Merry Christmas..


Christmas vacation is officially here..
and I am so excited about it..  I love Christmas!
I wish you all a Very Merry Christmas!


Holiday Tradition..

Holiday Traditions..

We try to get a new ornament each year, and we finished getting them picked out
over the weekend.
Here are the 3 we chose to add to our collection this year..

Happy 12th..

HAPPY 12-12-12

Hope you have a wonderful 12th day,
of the 12th month,
of the year 2012!

Apple Pie Crisp..

We did something totally different for Thanksgiving..

Apple Pie Crisp

We used a store bought pie crust (deep dish),
Canned Apple Pie Filling that I made earlier this year from the apples we bought
from a local Orchard, (yum) and then made a quick crumble to put on the top.

(The Crumble that we put on top was made from Butter, Quick oats, brown sugar, and a little

Oh boy, it was good!


Are you ready for Thanksgiving?
I know I am.. 

Lots of cooking to do.. and I think I will start today,
so I can enjoy more family time tomorrow!


Happy Thanksgiving!


Dearest Friday..

It is just about time you got here..
It has been a great week, in fact a wonderful week..
but I must admit to you..   that I am ready for the weekend. :0)

Why I will never do this again.. :0)


I made an Angel Food cake today..
and I thought to myself..

I will just use my handmixer this time so I don't have to get my big Stand Mixer out of the cabinet and so on....

 Big Mistake.. I stood there what seemed like hours mixing those egg whites.. trying to
get those medium peaks to form in the frothy foam..  Let me tell you, the first sign of any kind of peak on those things I was done!!! Done I tell you! :0)

Don't get me wrong - I am very happy with my kitchenaid handmixer..
it definately serves a purpose.. mash potatoes and so on.
But as far as Angel Food cake goes..  I will get my big Kitchenaid Mixer out from here on out! :0)

Oh, and the Angel Food Cake turned out great.. (completely edible) so no harm done.. ha, ha.

Something new..

 I wash my hands what easily seems like several hundred times a day..   
Well, since I have never actally counted how many times, let's just say many, many times a day.. that is more accurate. :0)

Anyway, this time of year my hands start getting dry from all that washing.. 

So I decided to try a new bar soap..
(Liquid hand soap is great - but I like to always have bar soap available as well)

So looking at bar soap.. so many choices..
This one says it "gently exfoliates", and says it is "with natural oatmeal to soothe dry skin"...

Sounds good to me..

Result:  I do think it is a keeper..
I actually like the scent of it as well.. Not too soapy, if that makes sense.


Do you have a favorite bar soap or handsoap that you recommend?
(*Please know that this company knows nothing about me,  just my own personal opinion on a product that i purchased)

Pink Glitzy Tipped Nails..

I decided to go Pink, and Glitzy..

I started with a pink basecoat,  tipped my nails with a pink glitter polish, and then painted a stripe of silver glitter...

Too cute!

(pink - sally hansen "solid as a rock" / pink glitter - Nicole by O.P.I in "wear something sparkylie"
and Kiss Nail art Paint striper: silver)


I thought I would share just a little on how I organize my 'coupons'.. and coupon.

Why do I use coupons?
Basically, I enjoy saving money for my family when I can...
on the things we would be buying anyway.
(Things we need and use.. I enjoy a good deal.. but, I don't get a good deal for the sake of getting a good deal)

When I started using coupons.. I actually use to carry a big binder with all my coupons extremely organized.. into many specific categories. However, after a few months.. I realized it took way too much of my time! Live & Learn!
So I stopped that.. :0)

You have to find what works for you.
I just found it was taking too much of my time to keep it organized and up to date.. so I found another way.

I use a small organizer that my mom actually gave me.. I think it was intended for photo's.. but it works great for me.

I use general categories.. such as: Dairy, Household, Snacks, Frozen.. etc.

It has a closure and fits great in my handbag..
so if I see something that I may have a coupon for.. I have them available to look through and only
takes a minute to check.

I like to have it on hand for those 'just in case' deals.. :0)

I actually plan my shopping trips in advance with the Store sale ads, and
I use my planner for this. (which also is small enough to fit in my handbag)

I check out the sales, figure out a menu for the week, see what coupons I have available or what 'deals' are mentioned on the couponing websites that I check out, and then I get my list and coupons together based on all of the above. :0)

My list goes in the back of my planner, and the coupons go right beside my list in a little transparent folder.

(There are a lot of good couponing sites online that will show you the best deals, and for the stores you shop at)

That is basically how I coupon.
That is what works for me, and while it does take some time to match up deals with coupons and so on..
It makes it all worth it when I see that total dropping lower and lower at the end of a transaction.
Yep, gotta love that.. :0)

Sweet & Salty Snack (easy!)

Super Simple n Crunchy Snack.. (sweet & salty)
(I think this is usually called Puppy Chow.)
Well, here is my version of "Puppy Chow"..
I just call it a simple snack. :0)
8 cups Corn Chex Cereal (or a generic brand of it)
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter (creamy)
1/4 cup butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
Melt butter, peanut butter, vanilla, and choc. chips in microwave safe bowl for approx 45 seconds.. until smooth/creamy. (microwave time may vary)
Pour over Cereal and mix thoroughly until it is well coated.

Place coated cereal mixture into a large zip lock baggie with powdered sugar, and shake it around til it is all coated with the sugar.
Then I divide it up into snack size portions (small zip lock bags) and throw in some pretzels as well.
I placed some in the fridge in our "lunchbox drawer" and the extras into the freezer..

Fast, Crunchy, Salty, and Sweet snack!


When I took my dog out early this morning,

The sky was so beautifully lit up by the moon..
so I grabbed my camera and tripod and took a quick photo.


Looking forward to fall..

I am so looking forward to Fall..
Cooler days and cooler evenings,
Hot chocolate,
Hot apple cider,
and all those beautiful and colorful Fall decorations..
and of course getting out the hoodies.  I do love my sweatshirts. :0)
I really enjoy all the seasons.. but I enjoy moving from one season to the next as well,
especially fall.. because I love fall decorations. 
The colorful leaves, sunflowers, pumpkins,
 and the cute scarecrows sitting around.
Also, because it means it is almost time for Christmas decorations.
Yes, I am one of 'those' people that start decorating for Christmas extremely early! :0)
Love that time of year.

Homemade Instant Oatmeal (packets)

Homemade Instant Oatmeal..

Uh, Wow..You can find a ton of recipes for homemade instant oatmeal on the Internet..
For the most part they are all very similar.
  A few differences here and there.
Since I had everything I decided to use on hand, I gave it a try.

Ingredients for each 'baggie':

1/4 cup whole wheat quick cook oats,
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon powdered milk
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt

You just get your ingredients out, and put them in a baggie, close em up.. and there ya go..
so easy! (I keep ours in the fridge.. not sure if ya have to - it's just what i do.)

The result..

To cook..
Get out a baggie, pour it in a microwave safe bowl,
add a little water or milk (approx. 1/2 cup give or take - depends how thick you like your oatmeal),
(you can always add to it - can't take it out...) :0)
stick it in the microwave.. cook for a minute or so (depends on your microwave)..
For us, we add 1/2 cup water.. cook 1 minute..
in my opinion.. it is kinda bland,
but that is where the fun comes in.. you can get creative and add whatever you want to it..
fruit, raisins, honey, more sugar, more cinnamon, whatever you like.. :0)

Super simple.. :0)


"Exercise?  I thought you said Accessorize."

My daughter and I were in the store and she found this picture..
So funny!

Evening stroll..

I have been going on walks every evening for the past couple of weeks now,
so I guess it has become a habit..
and of course, it's good for me and my dog.. :0)

(isn't he cute?)

Most of the time my family goes with me as well.. so it is a fun time!

Last night there were some beautiful clouds climbing in the sky, so I got out my cellphone
and took a photo..

Not the best photo but you get the idea..  :0)

glimpse of fall...

We are getting a slight glimpse of Fall this morning.

It is in the low 60's and it is so nice out.
We have had SO many over 100 degree's days.. and the low's have been in the mid to upper 70's..
so it almost seems chilly out right now!
It will be in the low 90's later today, but I am going to enjoy the
cooler temperature while it lasts.

Almost makes me to want dig out my sweatshirts! :0)

My buddy..

We have added a couple new critters to our ranch lately..
Here is one of them..

Here is my new buddy..

Isn't he a beauty?
He is a gentle giant, (and i do mean Giant!)
He is about 6 inches taller than our other horses,
and as sweet as he can be..

Balloon Wreath..

I saw this super cute idea for a wreath made using Balloons..
I used a styrofoam wreath, LOTS of the smaller water balloons since you can find
them about anywhere right now at a good price, and LOTS of flower U pins. (found in the floral department)
I have over 500 balloons so far.. still need to finish off the outside edge.. but i ran out of
the u-pins.. So until I get more, it is a project close to being done! ha..

Really such a cute project and can be used over and over!
To see the post and how they did it, click below:

  Check it out Here at Raining Hot Coupons

Dirt cake..

Dirt cake..
with uh...
gummy bears!

My son's birthday was yesterday and he requested dirt cake for his
birthday cake..

I couldn't find Gummy Worms - what is up with that?
Was there a big demand for gummy worms this week that i was unaware of??
Ha, ha..

Anyway.. :0)
We decided to get Gummy Bears..

Which was really funny.. and tastes just as good!
Worked out great.

Earring Holder..

My daughter and I went shopping, and I found this cute earring display holder.
It also has a tray around the base that can hold rings or whatever..
So cute!!

                  (from Jcpenney's)


Chair Makeover Project..

When we were visiting family members a while back we stopped in a fun
antique shop to look around..  They had this adorable Shabby Chic chair that I wanted
 for my computer desk/office area.
(I have a large leather type office chair, (boring!) and I have been wanting something different)
 Well, I hesitated on it and didn't buy it.
And of course, I have thought I should have bought it many times since.. Ugh! :0)

Since that town is a couple hours from here, we have been looking
 at nearby flea markets and antique stores that are closer to us to see what we could find.
After looking at several, and finding nothing... We finally found it!
A Heavy, Wood, Antique, & Unique Chair.. Perfect for a makeover!

Here it is:

I took the seat off and added new foam/fabric.. Painted it a light gray, Put the seat back on..

and Here it is now:

Perfect for my office area..
Plus, I had the fabric/batting/paint already so this whole project was.. $12.50!
(which is what we paid for the chair)

Gotta love that!

Cherry Jello Cake..

This is probably one of my favorite desserts..
(definately in the top 10 anyway) :0)
It is super simple to make, so that is a bonus!

I don't know what it is called, I believe I got this recipe from one of my sisters..
so I am just calling it Cherry Jello cake.. :0)
and I don't have an actual recipe, i just know it by heart i guess. ha..


1 boxed white cake mix (plus the ingredients for that)
1 cup water
1 pkg cream cheese
1 container Cool Whip
1 Pkg of Cherry Jello
1 Can of Cherry Pie Filling

Make the white cake as directed, let cool.
Poke holes all over the cake.
Heat water to boil, remove from stovetop, add jello mix and stir it until the jello has dissolved..
let cool a few minutes and then pour all over the cake.
(I then place it in the refrigerator..)
You will want your cream cheese at room temperature, mix it up with your handmixer/mixer and then add in the cool whip.  Mix those together until combined well.
Use your cream cheese/cool whip mixture to frost the cake.
Add your Cherry Pie filling on top of that.

and Enjoy.. Yum!

(Cake needs to be kept in refrigerator)

Freezer Cooking..

Freezer Cooking..

I like to do freezer cooking from time to time to stock up the freezer on ready to heat.. and eat :0)

Last night seemed like a good time to multi task..
So I got my bread machine started making a loaf of bread (homemade bread - yum!),
and decided to do some freezer cooking..
Breakfast Burrito style. :0)

You can make them however you like basically..
they freeze really well, and are a easy breakfast, lunch, snack and so on..

I use 2 pkg's sausage, eggs, shredded cheese, & tortilla shells..
oh, and picante sauce (I forgot to add that in the photo!)

This is how I do it.. I cook the sausage, remove it from the pan.  Then I cook the eggs (scrambled), then mix the sausage back in with the eggs, add the cheese and the picante sauce. When the cheese has melted, remove the pan from heat and add a spoonful (or so) onto a tortilla shell, roll it up and wrap in aluminum foil. 

You could also use ham, add onions, green peppers, Velveeta or whatever you like in your breakfast burritos..

There was enough for supper, and 23 of them wrapped up for the freezer!