Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Dream A Little Dream of Me - Boho Leather and Clay Necklace

 Stars shining bright above you
Night breezes seem to whisper, I love you
Birds singin' in the sycamore tree
Dream a little dream of me

 Say nighty-night and kiss me
Just hold me tight and tell me you'll miss me
While I'm alone and blue as can be
Dream a little dream of me

Sweet dreams till sunbeams find you
Sweet dreams that leave all worries behind you
But in your dreams whatever they be
Dream a little dream of me

Find this necklace and details at Simply Sheryl's

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Valentines Boho Necklace

It's been awhile since I've had a moment to share my goings on. Life has a way of taking us on a roller coaster ride on occasion, but fortunately for us, it hasn't been a bad ride. Now that we've finished with the Christmas rush, we can sit back and enjoy family, friends and what the season is really all about, love and giving. Interestingly enough, Valentines is just around the corner, another day to show that special sweetheart in your life how special they are.
Here's a bit of trivia regarding Valentines Day.
Saint Valentine's Day, also known as Valentine's Day or the Feast of Saint Valentine, is celebrated on February 14 and  is celebrated in many countries around the world, although not a holiday in most.
St. Valentine's Day began as a liturgical celebration one or more early saints named Valentinus.  A popular account of Saint Valentine of Rome states that he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians. According to legend, during his imprisonment, he healed the daughter of his jailer, Asterius. An embellishment to this story states that before his execution he wrote her a letter signed "Your Valentine" as a farewell.
The day was first associated with romance in the circle of Geoffery Chaucer in the High Middle Ages,  when the tradition of courtly love flourished. In 18th-century England, it evolved into an occasion in which lovers expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering sweets and sending greeting cards (known as "valentines"). In Europe, Saint Valentines Keys are given to lovers "as a romantic symbol and an invitation to unlock the giver’s heart".

You can give a one of a kind Valentine this year, hand crafted with love and attention to detail. You will find this piece in my etsy shop at Simply Sheryl's  

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Gingersnaps for a Tasty Tuesday

Years ago, when I was a wee one, Mom would make all sorts of cookies. One of my favorites were what the C&H Sugar Co. called gingersnaps. I suppose they would snap if you cooked them long enough, but regardless, these are chewy, spicy, yumilicious. I did a little experiment with the recipe because well, I just wanted to. So I traded flaxseed meal for the egg, and added 3 T. water. The texture was wonderful, and Nature Guy says they are "too" good, probably because we are both trying to shed a few pounds and cookies are not a diet food. That's okay, we just need to not inhale the whole batch in one sitting right? So I will give  you two versions of the recipe and you can decide which you like better. The mixing and baking is the same for both recipes.

Gingersnaps    Bake at 350 degrees   Yield 4 dozen

1#  Original Recipe
3/4 c. shortening       1 c. sugar        1/4 c. molasses        1 egg          2 t. ginger      1 t. cinnamon           1/4 t. salt        2 t. baking soda      2 c. flour  

#2  My Recipe
1/4 c. coconut oil       1/2 c. butter       1 c. sugar         1/3 c. molasses       1 T. flaxseed meal+ 3 T. water     1 T. ginger        2 t. cinnamon       1/4 t. ground cloves       1/4 t. salt        2 t. baking soda
1/2 c. whole wheat flour        1 1/2 + 1/3 c. flour    

 In a medium size bowl cream fats, sugar and molasses until light and fluffy. Add egg or substitute (flaxseed meal and water) and blend well. Sift together dry ingredients and stir in until well mixed. Chill for one hour. In a flat bowl add about 1/2 sugar. Pinch off part of dough to make a quarter size ball and roll in sugar. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees.  Enjoy!                                                                

Monday, October 6, 2014

Halloween Fun and Goodies

 Not wanting to steal the thunder of our Witches of Giggleswick Blog Hop, I am post my ebay and etsy items for the time being over here. I linked the give away to the above blog hop so click on it and see what you can win.
So this handsome fella is available on ebay right now. Just click on HUNGRY JACK

This cute little hand sculpted candy cup can be found at ETSY

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Spicy Mixed Veggie Relish

Look at all that veggie goodness! pickling cukes, carrots, celery, onion red and green bells and roasted peppers all soaking up a delicious syrup of sweetness and spices. 
As usual I didn't follow the recipe, mostly due to lack of all the right veggies, but hey, I had surplus of things that needed to be used so it's all good. I doubt that anyone will be picking the relish apart....lol.

I used brown and white sugar and a combo of cider and white vinegar and added a pinch of cloves to bring the flavor level up and wow, it's good! (I'm practicing showing confidence. How am I doing?)

With all that being said, I will share the recipe I found and my changes. Either way, I think this recipe is a winner for hotdogs, burgers pulled pork sandwiches, tuna or potato salad. Anyone else getting hungry?

Spicy Mixed Veggie Relish


For the Relish:
  • 8 large cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced (about 2 quarts diced) (I used pickling cukes and minced celery, about half and half)
  • 2 cups of chopped onion
  • 3 green bell peppers, chopped ( didn't have all the peppers I needed so I minced some carrots to make up the difference.)
  • 3 red bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 large can of pimento, drained and chopped, optional ( I didn't have this on hand but had some Anaheim peppers, 6 to be exact, that I roasted, peeled and minced)
  • 2 tablespoons of kosher salt
  • All told you should have about 3 quarts of finely chopped veggies.
For the Syrup:
  • 1 quart of white or cider vinegar (I did half and half)
  • 4 cups of granulated sugar (I used 1 1/2 c white sugar and 2 1/2 c dark brown sugar)
  • 2 teaspoons of finely minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of mustard seed
  • 2 tablespoons of celery seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes, or to taste, optional (I used 1/2 t. )

In a large glass or plastic bowl, mix together the cucumbers, onion and peppers; toss to mix well. Add salt, stir, cover and refrigerate; let stand 6 hours or overnight, stirring occasionally. Drain well, but do not rinse.

In a large pot, mix together the vinegar, sugar, garlic, mustard seed, celery seed, and turmeric. Bring to a boil, stirring regularly until sugar is dissolved. Add in the drained vegetables and red pepper flakes, if using, return to a boil, reduce to medium and simmer for 30 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer relish into sterilized jars and top off with syrup. Seal, refrigerate, or process for canning. Makes about 6 pints.

To Process for Canning: Sterilize jar and lids. Prepare a hot water bath. Pack hot pickles and liquid into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace.  Remove air bubbles. Add lids and rings and process for 15 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Multi Grain Rye Bread for Autumn

Look at all that whole grain goodness, side by side with rich molasses and yummy sweet honey! Flaxseed meal, corn meal and whole oats were the start of what turned out to be a great bread for sandwiches as well as a great dunking bread for soup.
 The not so secret ingredient is rye flour, which rounds out the flavor in this dense but soft and filling bread.

I experimented by using coconut oil in place of canola oil. I always cut my oil measurement in half by adding applesauce, which has pectin that helps the dough rise and be soft and moist. This recipe will make two, and if you need to you can freeze one for later. 

Multi Grain Rye Bread

2 1/2 c. potato water, or tap water warmed up to about 100 degrees
2 T. yeast
1 c whole oats
1/4 c each corn meal, flaxseed meal and honey
3 T each coconut oil, applesauce, and molasses ( you can use 1/3 c oil in place of coconut oil and applesauce)
1 1/2 t. salt 
2 c rye flour
3 c each whole wheat and white flour

In a large bowl combine the warm water, yeast, oats, cornmeal, flaxseed meal, honey and molasses. Stir lightly and let sit for about 5 minutes, until the yeast starts to foam. 
Add the coconut oil, applesauce, molasses, salt and rye flour. Stir and then add 1 cup each of the whole wheat and white flour.  Stir again and then add the rest of the flour a half of a cup at a time, kneading as you go, until you get a nice smooth dough, about 10 minutes. Place back in the large bowl and then let rise until double in bulk. Punch down and form into two loaves. Place into large bread pans and let rise again until about an inch above the edge of the pans. Bake for 35 minutes at 375 degrees. Enjoy!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Huckleberry Muffins

 We took a nice drive out Lostine Canyon the other night.
  Along with seeing gorgeous scenery and a herd of elk, we took a stroll down a path that led us to a huckleberry patch. What a great find! So we picked enough to come home and make some yummy treats such as huckleberry pancakes and muffins.
Here's my recipe for Huckleberry muffins. Enjoy!

1 2/3 cup white flour
1/3 cup whole wheat
1/4 cup each whole oats and flaxseed meal
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 1/4 cup almond milk (I used vanilla almond milk)
3 tablespoons butter, yes the real thing, melted
2 tablespoons oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl whisk together all dry ingredients. In another bowl, whisk together all wet ingredients, including the egg. Slowly stir the wet ingredients into the dry, trying not to over stir. The rule of thumb I learned in Home Ec, oh yes, that was ages ago, was about 11 to 15 good swipes around the bowl. It doesn't matter if you have a bit of flour here and there not stirred in, unless there's a lot. The idea is to not over beat the batter so your muffins come out nice and soft.
Grease or line your muffin tin with papers. I use a regular ice cream scoop to divide the batter. Yield is about 12 muffins. Bake for 25 minutes, or until golden on top.


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

New Earring Holders Using Re-purposed, Up-cycled Graters a Work In Progress

These graters have outlived their usefulness as such, but I hate to throw anything away, especially a vintage treasure. They were used for at least 60 years by the same person, and don't really grate well. Why not turn them into  fun and funky earring hangers, trees, holders, whatever you want to call them. I still have a few finishing touches for them, and will post later.

Monday, June 16, 2014

The Touch

 I just finished reading Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. It's a story that so startlingly mirrors what we are heading into today, that it makes you sit back and think. the similarities to the voice in the seashell bud in the ear, the walls that bring the "family" into the living room via screens with a scripted story people interact in. It brought to mind bluetooth ear buds, smartphones and Facebook with the hours we can get lost in chatting with people about things, but we don't really "do" anything.
The part that caught my eye the most was toward the end of the book where the story reads, "Everyone must leave something in the room or left behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you're there. It doesn't matter what you do, he said, so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that's like you after you take your hands away. The difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said. The lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime."

I love the gardener analogy so I've added here, a couple of photos I took with my dumb phone last night while out for a walk.  The hillsides here are covered with lupine and daisies and such in with wild abandon. The Creator must have delighted in tossing out the seeds of change this once naked earth needed to blossom and become the beautiful orb it now is. We see his hand in all the world around us, orderly in life cycles, yet given to asymmetric design.

More than that though, in the creative nature of the earth, is the living to touch the life of someone each day.

Each Life That Touches Ours for Good

 Each life that touches ours for good
Reflects thine own great mercy, Lord;
Thou sendest blessings from above
Thru words and deeds of those who love.

 What greater gift dost thou bestow,
What greater goodness can we know
Than Christlike friends, whose gentle ways
Strengthen our faith, enrich our days.

When such a friend from us departs,
We hold forever in our hearts
A sweet and hallowed memory,
Bringing us nearer, Lord, to thee.

 For worthy friends whose lives proclaim
Devotion to the Savior's name,
Who bless our days with peace and love,
We praise thy goodness, Lord, above.

 Karen Lynn Davidson

Today I hope to be more the gardener than the lawn cutter, the friend, the neighbor I should be.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Choosing the Future Father of Your Children

For years, since becoming an adult, I have thought that if I could choose who my real father would be, it would be Thomas S. Monson. From the first time I heard him speak in General Conference, I have looked to him as an example of what a real man is. So my dear Young Women, I am writing a letter to you today, in the hope that something I say will touch you as you grow up and find the future father of your children.

First off, let me say that the man you marry should be someone who can take you to the temple. We can all be assured that if Thomas S. Monson is our prophet, then he took his wife to the temple. This is not a step I would lightly dismiss, because if your future husband is truly worthy to take you to the temple we can be pretty sure, he is a great man already!

Let's take a look at why I admire President Monson so much. First off, he is happy. His demeanor and countenance is cheerful and upbeat. While no one can be happy and upbeat all the time, when you think of the weight of being the leader of our church must be on his shoulders, and yet he comes in front of us to speak with love, affection and hope, then someone who can be happy and have hope, even in hard times is a man worth taking a second look at.

Another reason I look to him is that he honors his priesthood by serving others. Who isn't touched by his stories of visiting widows and such at the prompting of the spirit? If our men are going to be out and about, wouldn't we want them to be serving someone in need of help, rather than just hanging out with the guys while we wrestle with children, chores and bills? Here is a statement he made  -
“There are many out there who plead and pray for help. There are those who are discouraged, those who are beset by poor health and challenges of life which leave them in despair. I’ve always believed in the truth of the words, ‘God’s sweetest blessings always go by hands that serve him here below.’ Let us have ready hands, clean hands, and willing hands, that we may participate in providing what our Heavenly Father would have others receive from Him.” President Monson is a true example of that. A man who can set aside the pleasures of the world to do what is right is worth their weight in gold. 

Humility is another characteristic I love about President Monson. He is not afraid to admit that at times he has missed the mark, or made choices such as playing with matches around a dry field. We all do things we regret. Someone who can look at their shortcomings, admit them and work on them is someone who will be forgiving and loving to you as well.

If you study a list of his accomplishments, you don't see accolades for sports achievements and such, but you do see the many times he has been recognized for his public service. Yet he doesn't go out and look to be recognized, he just does what is in his nature to do, make the world, the country, the state, his community and his church a better place to be.

I have always been fascinated by women who can look at a man and like him based on his character, not just looks. In truth they see through the surface and see the "beauty" beneath. While you may think attraction is key to having a good relationship, I can promise you this, no amount of handsome can make up for selfishness and mean spirited behavior. A good looking man can quickly become "ugly" when they are ugly in spirit. The surface looks fade away to reveal the "monster" underneath. I can also promise you that if you meet someone who is good, kind, happy and humble, he will become your "prince" as you come to love the inside of him, what is in his heart.

Look to the heart of the man, his character, his courage to stand up for right, his faith in God, his goodness, kindness and willingness to serve, and you will find the future father of your children.  Think of who you admire in our general authorities, and ponder on why you admire them. Make your list based on what I've said. Don't sell yourself short, remember, you are a daughter of God, you have the right to a good life with a good man, and a happy family. Choose wisely dear daughters, your future and your future children depend on you. To you with love.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Dear Dad,

Another Father's Day is on the horizon, and I wonder if you are still alive. I tried searching for you after Grandma urged me to, but the internet was just in it's infancy, and I had nothing to go on but a name. With 54 men named Maurice Leblanc showing up in the search, and some of them not even close to where you would possibly be, although I tried, I didn't get very far. It was hard, because in the back of my mind lurked the possibility that even if you were found you would not want to talk to me.

So it seems I will spend another Father's Day wondering where you might be, and if you even care. It's been so long since I was conceived that you may have forgotten I'm even here. I try not to think about it too much as it would consume my life and I have a lot to live for. I grew up thinking another man was my father. That was hard as I grew up thinking he didn't love me because I wasn't pretty or skinny or whatever like my two sisters. It was frustrating because I tried so hard to be good and smart and it was never enough. If Grandma hadn't gotten upset with my stepfather about something he said, I might never have known about you. She actually did me a huge favor though, as it lifted the burden of feeling unwanted by my "Dad". He was given a raw deal though and so I can't really blame him for the way things turned out. I know you weren't given a choice as to whether you would be in my life or not, and that's sad. I hear you were angry and didn't react very well when Mom didn't want to marry you, and for that I'm sorry. It seems you both made a mistake, but you know, I don't feel like I am one. I also know you got married and had children with your wife, so I have other "halfsies" out there somewhere.

There was a time when I felt very strongly I should look for you. The window of opportunity was open and the push to look was so strong. That feeling has subsided, and perhaps I missed an opportunity to learn about a great family. Fear overcame faith, as I came to feel that you might reject me as other adults in my family have over the years. I can't change that, or go back and correct it. I hope you had a happy life, and are surrounded by those who love you. Heavenly Father has taken care of me by giving me an opportunity to have the true gospel in my life. It has been my life line and God has sent me many angels to lift me up during hard times. I hope I can live up to the gift He has given me, as I truly believe He loves and cares for all of us.

Some day, on the other side, we will meet. Some day I will know what it is like to have both parents in my life, and my children will get to meet both of their grandparents for the first time. I don't know why Heavenly Father loved me enough to give me the strength I've needed to survive this life so far, but I hope it will continue, and that I can be even partly worthy of the blessings I have.

The hardest part about all of this is that I have nothing to share with my children and grandchildren about you. Hair color, eye color, likes, dislikes, sports did you have a favorite? Your parents, siblings, and so on. I only know where you came from, and that your nickname was Frenchie. I don't know who you really are, except someone who spent enough time with my mom to be intimate with her. Mom never told me about you, as she probably thought I would think poorly of her, and she already hated herself. We didn't know that until after she died, she was pretty good at keeping up a good front, but then abuse victims have practice with that.

I am so not good at expressing my feelings openly. It's not easy to share when for so many years sharing meant running the risk of rejection. Now, it doesn't really matter so much, because I've come to know that with God, all will be okay in the end. Even if things get rough, or harder than I think I can handle, with God it will all be okay in the end.

So Dad, wherever you are, I wish you a happy Father's day. May the Lord give you the gift he has given me.

Your Oldest Daughter,


It's a Rainy Day in Paradise.....

A cool drizzle washed my cheeks as I turned to head back down the hill to Wallowa Lake. My lungs filled with fresh moist air as I faced into the slight breeze. Ahhhhh.... what a way to start the day! The valley is canopied with soft gray clouds, releasing thirst quenching liquid to the parched earth. A doe cautiously watches me as a black bird chirps and flutters over my head, both wondering if I am friend or foe. The doe goes back to nibbling on greenery as the bird lands on a boulder by what I assume is her nest.
I started my run feeling sluggish and slow, but found my energy build as I plodded up the road. My goal was to make the place where the river crosses under the road, and yet I was able to keep on trudging up the pavement and get to the top of the hill. I always say a mental, "Hi Mom!" as I reach the top, sometimes stopping at the Chief Joseph monument to walk through the little cemetery and try to feel her presence. Sometimes I feel her close, a comfort I've not often had since she passed. No, she's not buried anywhere I can physically see, but if God allows her to be close to us I feel that she would be up at the lake waiting for us to come home.
It's time to get breakfast together as my daughter has to work a split shift today and will need the sustenance to keep her going. I am contemplating making a nice creamy soup of sorts, and perhaps some crusty, savory rye bread to go with it. Oh, that will be for dinner... lol. Breakfast will be an egg scramble, using up the leftover baked potato I had the other night. Chopped red bell pepper and onion will go into the mix as well. Fresh fruit and toast will round things out. Have a great day, I know I will!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

God's Not Dead Movie Review

First off you need to know that we don't go to movies, but 2 times a year. My husband thinks it's more entertaining to watch me as I watch the movie, than the actual show itself. I talk to the screen and really get into what is going on often blurting out, "what a jerk" or some such other exclamation. I certainly did that a few times during this movie.

A story of faith, and defending the faith, is what I would call this movie. Our hero Josh is a young Christian gone off to college with his girlfriend. He has enrolled in pre law, and she seems to have a fairytale dream of what life is supposed to be like. When Josh won't sign a paper his philosophy asks the class to sign, "In order to get God out of the way and move on to more important things", Josh says no. So the challenge is given for him to prove God exists, in three 20 minute segments of class. He puts his college career on the line, his so called sweetheart dumps him, and yet he still goes forward. There are a couple of sub plots within the main one that all tie together in the end. I liked that it wasn't a rabid view point from either side, and actually portrayed how people can either be for or against God.

There were a couple of hokey scenes, one in which Josh's girlfriend of 6 years gives him an ultimatum right off the bat regarding defending his stand on God. She dumps him far too quickly. Again when the young woman finds out she has cancer and her boyfriend immediately dumps her when she tells him, was a bit too fast. Over all we got the idea though, first, that Josh's girlfriend was more interested in not having her fairytale dream of life disrupted by actually having to stand for right, and possibly have that dream get delayed. When the young woman tells Mark that she has cancer, it shows the shallowness of many of today's relationships in the way he summarily dismisses her as a "toy" that was fun to play with, but now that the "toy" is broken he is moving on.

The movie over all was well done, with fantastic casting on the part of the characters. I don't want to give away all the good stuff, so I will just say, go see it. As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints I  was pleasantly surprised at how the over all topic of defending the faith was handled. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Whipped Coconut Macaroon Body Butter

I have a camp leaders meeting in a few moments so no glamor shots of my cream tonight. I wanted to share though, as I am already loving this new recipe I found and of course tweaked to my own taste using what I had on hand.
We had a Spa night last night for our young women at church. One of my counselors has a skin care business, and we both love to use natural ingredients as much as possible for a variety of endeavors. So she taught them how to make their own foot scrub, and I taught the girls a simple recipe for body cream that smells much like coconut macaroons. This is just a basic recipe, to which you can add 20-40 drops of your favorite essential oils, or fragrance. I rather like it as is, except that now I want to make some cookies...lol. All ingredients you can find at your local grocery/ pharmacy stores, or go online if you prefer. I used some today after my shower, and didn't suffer from the itching I normally do when using store bought lotions or creams. This is a much easier to put together cream than my normal recipe, and much less time consuming. Have fun and let me know what you think!

Whipped Coconut Macaroon Body Butter

1/2 cup coconut oil. (Do not melt, it whips better if you don't and whips up easily)
1 T. olive oil, avocado oil, or hazelnut oil
2 T. aloe vera gel  (optional)
1 T glycerin

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and whip until all lumps or grains are gone. Add your essential oils or fragrance and whip until well blended.
*Note- You can use a hand mixer, or a Kitchenaide with the wire whisk attachment, either work well, but the stand mixer is faster. It takes about 5 minutes to whip this up.
If your home is a bit warm and you find this getting a bit soft, place it in the fridge. It will work fine.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Tasty Tuesday - Butternut Squash Bread

So I get a little crazy sometimes, and got a wild hair to put some squash in my bread. I've not made bread for a bit because of family stuff going on. Anyhew, let's get to the recipe because it turned out so awesomely wonderful, and even Nature Guy loved it so much he was asking for more.

Butternut Squash Bread

1 cup butternut squash, cooked and mashed
1 1/2 cups warm water
1/4 cup honey
2 T. molasses
3 T. each applesauce, and oil
2 T. yeast
1 cup oatmeal
1/4 cup flaxseed meal
1 1/2 t. salt
2 cups whole wheat flour
4-5 cups white flour

In a large bowl combine the warm water, honey, molasses, yeast, oatmeal and flaxseed meal. Let sit until foamy, about 5-10 minutes. Add the oil, applesauce and salt. Then add the whole wheat flour plus 1 cup of white flour. Stir well, then start adding flour a half a cup at a time, and when the dough starts pulling away from the side of the bowl put on a well floured counter, and start kneading. Knead for about 10 minutes until dough is no longer sticky and it forms a nice bounce ball. Let rise for about an hour and a half or until doubled in size. Divide in half to make two large loaves or make two medium size loaves and one small one. I turned the small loaf into cinnamon raisin bread, which is sooooo yummy. Grease your pans and form your loaves. Let rise until dough reaches the top of the pans and even an inch above. Bake in a preheated oven for 35 minutes for smaller loaves and 40 for larger loaves. Enjoy!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Meatless Monday - Cheesy Mexi Corn Casserole

Let me start by giving credit where credit is due, as I snagged the idea for this recipe from the Taste of Home Best Church Supper Recipes cookbook. The original one was submitted by Patricia Barkman of Riverton, Manitoba, thank you! As usual I couldn't leave well enough alone, as this looked like a great main dish idea with a few additions/changes. I didn't use egg substitute as we just don't use the stuff, and I think reduced fat sour cream is, well.... just yucky! I have my own way of making sour cream low fat that actually tastes much better. I didn't use low fat cheddar either for the same reason. I did add bell pepper and onion though and it was a hit! The corn is double the original recipe as well and I left out the two tablespoons of butter as it just didn't seem necessary to have them and I added the italian seasoning. I also dchange the name, because it isn't quite the same and spoonbread doesn't really describe my version which is more of a quiche or souffle type dish.

Cheesy Mexi Corn Casserole

3 large eggs
1 15 oz. can corn, drained
1 15 oz. can cream corn
1/2 c. each sour cream and plain non fat yogurt
1 c. grated cheddar cheese
1 4 oz. can chopped green chilies, drained
1/2 c. each finely chopped red or green bell pepper and onion
1/2 c. cornmeal
1/2 t. each italian seasoning and salt
1/2 t. worcestershire sauce
1/8 t. cayenne pepper

In a large bowl beat eggs, then add the rest of the ingredients. Stir until blended. Pour into 9 inch square baking dish, coated with non stick spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.  Yield 9 servings.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Meatless Monday - Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie

Before you say anything, this is vegetarian, not vegan. Just getting that out of the way. Don't ask....lol. I have been trying to  cut back on our meat intake, not totally cut it out, but cut way back because we really don't need it. Nature Guy is on board with me amazingly enough, as he is my hotdogs, hamburgers, fish and chips fanatic. Be that as it may, he has noticed that he feels better when we don't eat so many heavy meals. He has a weight goal that he is almost at, and wants to keep it that way. Me, I find the older I get the less meat I seem to need, and sometimes just can't tolerate. Enough of the chatter though and on to the good stuff! I found a recipe that I tweaked a bit, oh yes I did! Surprising I know.... I added lentils for protein, and lots of veggies, because I like them! I even made this recipe with less cheese and it has lower cholesterol per serving than the original because of the changes in cheeses and amounts. I hope you give this one a try, it's really delicious.

Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie

1/2 c. red or green lentils simmered in 1 c. water + 1 tsp chili powder
1 c. each diced bell pepper, celery, onion and mushrooms
1- 15 oz can diced tomatoes
1- 15 oz can dark red kidney beans, drained and  rinsed
1 -15 oz can corn, drained
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T olive oil
2 T Italian seasoning blend
1 tsp worcesteshire sauce
1/2 tsp sugar
8 oz can tomato sauce
1/2 tsp seasoning salt

Potato Topping

4 medium potatoes, scrubbed and microwaved in a bag for 8 minutes, diced
1/2 t salt, 1/2 t. basil
1 T each olive oil and butter
1 1/2 c. sharp cheddar, grated
1/4 c. Parmesan cheese

Simmer the lentils in 1 c. water with chili powder until just tender, about 20 minutes. While they are simmering, saute in the olive oil the chopped bell pepper, celery, mushrooms and onion until just tender. Add the garlic, and stir in, cook one minute more, then add the rest of the ingredients, including the cooked lentils. This may look a bit "wet" but it will all be absorbed during the baking process. Pour into 9" x 13" baking pan or dish.
Microwave your scrubbed potatoes for 8 minutes in a bag, then cool and dice. In your saute pan melt the butter with the oil. Add your basil and cook for 1 minute. Then stir in the potatoes and salt. Cook one more minute and turn off burner. Mash lightly then dollop the potato mixture onto the veggie mixture in baking dish. Top with the cheeses and bake in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Serves 8-10. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Arm Candy Bracelet for Valentines

To my love, a treat.... 
for one so sweet!
Carry my heart,
where ere' though art. 

See this piece at Simply Sheryl's

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Hand Crafted Artisan Broken China Heart Pendant Necklaces for Valentines

Oh my! Has it really been since November that I've shared anything on my blog? Wow, time flies when life gets crazy!
I've been working on a Queen of Hearts doll, among other things, and I've listed several pieces either on etsy or this one on ebay.

And this one on etsy.....

Or this one on etsy.... do you notice a theme here?

Or this one on etsy....
So with heart flutter I share these lovely pieces, hoping some lucky Valentine will gift a sweetheart a one of a kind piece of jewelry. Now I'm off to see what else I've been behind on. ....