Monday, July 10, 2017

My Mom's 88th Birthday and Meeting Michele

 I recently went to Ohio to celebrate my Mom's 88th Birthday.  That's my sister, Amy, on the left with my Mom and I.  We took her to the Morgan House, and had a wonderful lunch. 


Isn't my Mom so cute?  She bought this pretty dress to wear for her birthday lunch, and then before I left for home, she gave it to me!

 Here's a picture of my chicken salad, with a side garden salad with a fresh strawberry dressing.  We each had a pot of tea, and I chose Blackberry Sage, Mom had Apricot, and Amy had Wild Blueberry.

Look who showed up to meet us!!  My friend, Michele, from The Nest at Finch Rest, surprised us!!  I had texted Michele to tell her where we were going, hoping that she could come by.  Michele and I have always wanted to meet in person.  Of course, we already knew each other well from blogging, but meeting in real life was such a treat.  My Mom and sister loved Michele right from the start, and she stayed and had a pot of tea with us.   Michele was too kind and brought my Mom a gift that she had made, with the instructions to open later. 

Here's Mom at home,  opening her gift from Michele.

The gift was a darling pitcher (which my mom collects) with a pretty floral arrangement.  Wasn't that sweet of Michele?  I placed it on my Mom's nightstand.

 My Mom always wants me to make her an angel food cake with her favorite Speedy Meringue Frosting.

Singing Happy Birthday to this sweet lady!  

My Mom and I had a day to spend together because my sister had to work.  I was down in the basement doing some laundry and this quilt and sham set was calling to me.  I brought it up to see if mom would like to change out her quilt on her bed, and she did.  It gave her a pretty summery feel to her room.  The green quilt at the foot of the bed was found down in the basement, too. Yes, it was such fun shopping the house! 

One evening we did the fun tiles that my son, Mike, and I had done this summer with the grands.  My nephew, Shane, joined in for the fun project.  He was so sweet and asked to create one together with his grandma.  the bouquet of flowers behind Shane were a gift from him to his Gram.


Happy 88th Birthday to my beautiful Mom, sitting on her pretty patio.  I was so happy to be able to share her birthday with her!

Now I am off to Breckinridge, CO, to vacation with my youngest son, Kevin, DIL, Kristen, and granddaughter, Harper.  

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Monday, June 26, 2017

Campfire Cookies


 We were busy at Cooking Camp this week and made Campfire Cookies.  I thought I'd have a little treat with some  ice tea in my late Beloved's camouflage mug, and used my oldest grandson, Connor's,  Fisher Price lantern from when he was little, as some fun decor.

 

 Here are three of the kids busy at decorating.  Yes, it gets messy in my kitchen, but don't those smiling faces look like they're having fun?


 We let Harper decorate some cookies at the little table.

 She's so careful in putting those sprinkles on her cookies, too.

 Here's Riley with his plate.

 Caiden looks quite pleased!

Cissy is ready to take hers home, and enjoy them later.

To go along with our campfire theme, the bigger kids used the wood burning tool, with a safety guard that my son made, and did a great job on their magnets.  The "Too Spicy" was done by my son because little Harper always puts up her hand and says "too spicy" when she doesn't want to eat something that she doesn't like!

 My other two granddaughters, Ella and Avery came over the next night and were able to make some campfire cupcakes.

 They tried their hand at creating some of the tiles that we did the week before, and loved doing that, too.  Ella is clutching her little Amigurumi bear that I crocheted for them, with the requirement that when they look at their them, they remember  that I love them.

Yield: 24

Campfire Cookies

I saw these cookies in a picture and thought how fun they'd be for the kids to make. You can make your own recipes or use store bought. We don't judge!

INGREDIENTS:


  • Sugar Cookies, homemade or slice and bake or pre-formed and baked
  • Vanilla buttercream, homemade or store bought, tinted green
  • Mini Tootsie Rolls, for the logs
  • Malted Milk Balls, crushed for the dirt
  • Gummy Bears, in red, yellow, orange, white, for the flames
  • Mini Pretzel Sticks, for the sticks for the marshmallows
  • Mini marshmallows

INSTRUCTIONS:


  1. Bake your sugar cookies, and let cool on wire rack.
  2. Tint the buttercream a green color for the grass, and spread on the top of the cookie.
  3. Crush the malted milk balls to be used as dirt, and sprinkle around the outside edge of the cookie.
  4. Place three Tootsie Rolls in a triangle on top to be used as the logs.
  5. Place some of the cut up Gummy Bears in the middle of the "logs" to resemble the flames.
  6. Add a mini marshmallow on the end of three mini pretzel sticks. At this point, you can actually toast them, or just leave them un-toasted. Place them around the logs.
  7. Enjoy your Campfire Cookies!
Created using The Recipes Generator


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Monday, June 19, 2017

Cookies and Cream Ice Cream and a Craft


 We had an ice cream party with our favorite chocolate covered cookie balls at Nana's Cooking Camp this past week.  It was too hot to take a picture outside of  the ice cream for fear of melting all that yumminess.  I decided to use a pretty teacup for serving! 

 Even my 13-year-old grandson, Riley came to participate!  


 My son who is the kids'  Uncle Mike , joins in and heads up the art part of the camp.  Little two year old Harper came to spend the day with us.  We like to start them out early in cooking and crafting!  Harper loves the cookie balls!


 We did this super fun project that I found on Pinterest.  You use 4x4" tiles (16 cents!!) from the home improvement store and you color on them with colored Sharpies.  After that you use rubbing alcohol and a dropper and drop  droplets onto the tile and see what happens.  It's very exciting to watch!  If you don't like your design, you can wipe it clean with rubbing alcohol and a paper towel. 

 Here are the two that my son and I did.  After they're dry, you spray them with a clear spray to protect them.  The kids loved doing them, and so did we!!


start

Yield: 5-6 servings

Cookies and Cream Ice Cream

My grandson, Caiden, suggested that we make cookies and cream ice cream, and so we did just that. It was a big hit!

INGREDIENTS:


  • 1 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla

INSTRUCTIONS:


  1. In a medium bowl, use a hand mixer on low speed, combine the milk, sugar and salt until the sugar is dissolved. Stir in the heavy cream and vanilla. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours, or overnight.
  2. Turn on the ice cream maker (or follow the directions for your particular ice cream machine); our the mixture into the frozen freezer bowl and let mix about 15-20 minutes. At this point, the kids and I added the broken chocolate sandwich cookies, and let the machine mix it for a brief time. The ice cream will have a soft, creamy texture. If a firmer consistency is desired, transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and place in the freezer for about 2 hours.
Created using The Recipes Generator


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Monday, June 12, 2017

Snickerdoodle Donuts/Donut Hole Muffins

 School is out and we had our first Cooking Camp by making Snickerdoodle Donuts and Donut Hole Muffins.  If you don't have a donut pan or mini muffin pan, no problem!  Just use a regular muffin pan and bake the muffins a little longer.  


 Look at these cute grandkids, who are brother and sister, enjoying some baking time in Nana's kitchen.

 They are enjoying their baking accomplishments and even had some to take home to their family.



yield: 24 donut hole muffins or 4 donuts and 12 donut hole muffinsprint recipe

Snickerdoodle Donuts/Donut Hole Muffins

These were a big hit at our first Cooking Camp! I had so much of the sugar coating leftover that I cut that part in half for an improvement to the recipe, and for less waste, for when I make another time, and there will be another time...these were so tasty!!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • Coating: 1/2 cup butter, melted, 1/2 cup sugar, 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 24 cup miniature muffin pan, or a 12 cup regular muffin pan. Be sure to spray the pans over the kitchen sink!
  2. Stir together sour cream, oil, egg, vanilla, and 1/2 cup sugar.
  3. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium bowl.
  4. Whisk sour cream mixture into the flour mixture. Spoon 1 tablespoon batter (we used a small cookie scoop) into prepared pan, keeping batter rounded on top.
  5. Bake in a preheated oven until golden and springy when lightly touched on top, about 10-12 minutes. Cool in pan for 5 minutes. Remove from pan to a wire rack; cool completely, about 15 minutes.
  6. Prepare the coating: Place melted butter in a small bowl. Whisk together the sugar, and the spices in another small bowl. Dip each muffin in butter; immediately dredge in sugar mixture, and place on a serving platter.
Created using The Recipes Generator




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Monday, June 5, 2017

Popovers

 I told you before how my daughter, years ago,  won a shopping spree at Neiman-Marcus, and she would treat us to lunch in their restaurant.  That is where we discovered our love for the best popovers ever!  They serve their popovers with strawberry butter, which is so luscious.

 I had some homemade raspberry jam and decided to mix a little of that into some butter, and put it into this pretty dish. I bought these little jam/butter dishes at the Mikasa outlet before they closed their stores, and use them all the time.



yield: 6 large popoversprint recipe

Popovers

I adapted this recipe to make 6 popovers, because that's the size pan that I have.  You can see how big the popovers are in comparison to my teacup! You must have the eggs and milk warm before mixing, and to let the batter sit for an hour before baking. Serve with butter that has some fruit preserves mixed in...yum!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 and 3/4 cups milk
  • 2 cups flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees (or plan on doing this halfway when the batter is resting for an hour).
  2. Place the milk in a bowl and microwave for about 1 minute, or until warm tp the touch.
  3. Sift the flour, salt, and baking powder together in a bowl. (I'm lazy and just whisk the ingredients together with a wire whisk.)
  4. Crack the eggs into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a wire whisk and beat on medium speed for about 3 minutes, until foamy and pale in color. Turn down the mixer to low and add the warm milk. Gradually add the flour mixture and beat n medium speed for about 2 minutes. Turn the mixer off and let the batter sit for 1 hour at room temperature.
  5. Spray a popover pan generously with nonstick spray. Fill the popovers cups almost to the top with the batter and place the popover pan on a cookie sheet. The popovers will rise about 3-4" so make sure your oven racks are spaced properly.
  6. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Turn down the oven temperature to 375 degrees and bake for 30-35 minutes longer, until the popovers are a deep golden brown on the outside.
  7. Turn out the popovers and serve hot.
Created using The Recipes Generator






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Monday, May 29, 2017

Strawberry Whipped Sensation Pie

 I'm having a slice of this Strawberry Whipped Sensation Pie that my darling granddaughter and I made the other day, when I picked her up after school.  I have more in the freezer, if you'd like to stop by.

 

 This Roy Kirkham teacup is one of my favorite summer ones.  It's called Alpine Strawberry and I love the bees that are on the cup and the saucer.


 Here's Cissy busy squeezing the lemons.  I had lots of lemons, but I would never judge, if you'd like to use bottled lemon juice.  In fact, we used a shortcut and used prepared crusts for our pies.  Making things easy for kids is a good idea.  We also doubled the ingredients and actually got three pies.  I have one to take to a friend that recently had surgery.


Happy Memorial Day!  xo

yield: 1 pieprint recipe

Strawberry Whipped Sensation Pie

I tried this as a dessert from Kraft, but decided that it was easier, and less messy in pie form. It's really a perfect, cool, easy summertime recipe.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups fresh strawberries
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tub (8 oz.) frozen whipped topping, thawed and divided
  • 1 Oreo cookie crust (or make your own)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Mash 2 cups berries in large bowl.
  2. Add the sweetened condensed milk, lemon juice, and 2 cups of the thawed whipped topping.
  3. Pour into the pie crust. Frost with additional whipped topping. Cover and freeze for 6 hours.
Created using The Recipes Generator






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Monday, May 22, 2017

The Best Oatmeal Cookies

 I've been down in the dumps for awhile and I decided to have a feeling blue pity party for myself and bake my very favorite cookies in the whole wide world.  I'd ask you to stay and share a cookie with me, but I'm so sorry, I ate BOTH of them. Oh yes, I did!

 Maybe in  Just a Matter of Thyme my pity party will end, the blues will go away, and all will be well with my soul.


 I do remind myself that I have FAITH, HOPE, and LOVE, which my son, Mike, stenciled for me onto these rocks.  I love the way a beam of sunlight is shining on the LOVE!


My sweet sis sent me this pretty teacup from Grace's teaware awhile back, and I thought it was fitting for my feeling kinda blue tea. 

In order to keep my mind busy, and besides making these favorite oatmeal raisin cookies, I also made another favorite, which are found here.  After that, I decided that I needed a project and I defrosted my upright freezer that is in my garage.  My late Beloved would be horrified to see all the ice that had built up in it.  He always took on that task, and I had avoided defrosting it way beyond when it should've been done. It took me hours to defrost, and I took out enough icebergs to my garden that could've sunk the Titanic!   Did baking and taking on this icy project help?  It kept my mind and body busy, but all I can do is pray and trust God.

Thank you for coming to my feeling blue, pity party tea.  Hopefully next time, I won't eat all the cookies! 


yield: 30 large cookiesprint recipe

Best Oatmeal Raisin Cookies Ever

I am not a shopper at Neiman-Marcus, but I love their food! Years ago my daughter won a $1,000.00 shopping spree there and she spent some of it at Horchow Finale and took me to Neiman-Marcus to eat quite a bit. Oh, how we loved their lunch menu, but they also have a cafe, where you can go up and order a quick lunch. It was there that I discovered the best oatmeal raisin cookie that I had ever tasted. I must confess unashamedly that am a connoisseur of oatmeal raisin cookies, because I try them whenever I have a chance. I have made America's Test Kitchen's recipe and loved that, but I have never tried another recipe since eating this one! I asked them for the recipe and they gave it to me, only in a huge amount, which I had to cut down to a manageable size.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 cups oatmeal (I use Old Fashioned)
  • 3 cups raisins (can be a combo of dark and golden)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Place the butter and sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer, with the paddle attachment. Beat at medium speed for about 30 seconds, until fluffy.
  2. Turn down the mixer to low speed and add the eggs and vanilla and almond extracts. Beat for about 30 seconds longer, until well combined.
  3. In an another bowl, sift together the flour, salt and baking soda. Add to the mixer, while beating on low speed for about 15 seconds, stopping to scrape down the sides of the mixer with a spatula.
  4. Add the oatmeal and raisins and mix for about 15 seconds.
  5. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Using an ice cream scoop, drop the cookie dough onto the parchment paper about 3" apart. Gently press down the cookies to spread. At this point, refrigerate the dough, or I like to freeze the balls of cookie dough and then transfer them to food safe storage bags.
  6. When ready to bake, bake the cookies in a preheated 350 degree oven for 12-15 minutes. Frozen cookies may take a little longer.
  7. Enjoy these wonderful, comforting cookies!!
Created using The Recipes Generator



This sweet granddaughter, Avery, turned 10 this past week, and I was able to take her out for dinner to celebrate her!  She loves desserts and she ordered the chocolate molten cake.  She also got the scoop of ice cream for free and we added that on top of the cake, too.

Thank you for your visit!  xo

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