Wednesday, December 9, 2009

So Much . . . In So Little Time

As promised, here's the beginnings of our little snow village. The people move around the lighted Christmas tree. Every now and then, I catch Katie playing house with the pieces. I can't get on to her too much because I did the same thing when I was her age. The only difference is the pieces that I played with when I was a child were plastic. I remember playing house with a plastic Nativity scene, wax candle lamp post and other miscellaneous figurines like a candle snowman and plastic Santa Claus. She hasn't played with it lately, maybe the new has wore off.

After a few hair pulling, sleepless, drooling days, Colton has finally cut his top front tooth. This tooth makes number 3. You can see the fourth tooth, but it still hasn't broke through yet. Poor baby, his gums are all swollen, red and he seems to be in pain. I'm hoping it won't be long before it breaks all the way through.

2009 SEC Championship Video - Bama vs. Florida Gators -
Hear Saban's speech to the team,the players getting motivated before the game and clips of the game. According to Doug, it's an awesome video.

Our First Fall Snow Day

We really were not expecting any snow this day because chances were so slim, but we got a delightful surprise the next morning. Katie stayed the night with Peggy and Millard. I knew the snow wouldn't last long, so I called Peggy and see if they had the same white stuff. Sure enough they did, but Katie was still in bed. After I hung up, they went ahead and woke her up to see it. Would you believe, she told her grandma and paw-paw that she didn't want to go outside? Little stinker.

We've had some crazy weather the past few days. Yesterday, we had some storms with a lot of wind roll through here. The highs were 65 degrees. Today the high was around 47 degrees and they are saying it will be 27 degrees in the morning. It's so wacky that Colton has caught another cold. Honestly, I think it's my fault because I cover him up with his big blanket to go to the car. Once we get in the car, I'm still afraid he might be a little cold, so I leave the blanket on him. I think he get's too warm and begins to sweat. I'm learning now to keep the blanket down around his feet and not cover him up.

Natalie's Ball Game
Last weekend, we had a chance to go see Natalie play basketball before the big SEC Championship game between Bama and Gators. We were glad to see Nat play a little college ball. I was so busy watching Katie that I forgot to look at the final score, but I do know that Wallace State won. By the way, Doug and I are both Wallace alumnus.
Katie loved watching the girls play basketball, but she was making me a nervous wreck because it was a big drop off right in front of us.
The lion was going around, greeting the kids. Katie kept a close eye on him because she didn't want him to come up to her. Doug thought they could have picked a better costume because this lion costume was too scary.

Reese Cup Cookie Recipe

I made these for the Horton Christmas. It's such an easy recipe and so good.

1 box Peanut Butter Cookie Mix
1 Large Bag Reese Cups (miniature size)

Mix up cookie mix according to directions on box. Roll up a ball about 1 inch round, put in mini muffin pan mash down and put a thumb print in middle. Bake according to directions on box, while hot put a reese cup in cookie. Cool some before you take it out of the pan.

I'm also planning on taking to the party: My grandmother's Apricot-Pineapple Salad, Sugar Cookies, Cake Bon-Bons and rolls. I'll post pictures and recipes at a different time.

Katie's World
Well, I've given you the latest activities for Katie's school. Today, her class made their Christmas t-shirts. She told me this morning, she wanted to paint Mrs. Claus on her shirt. When I picked her up from school, she was disappointed that she didn't get to paint Mrs. Claus. Instead, they made reindeer from their handprints. I remember my nieces and nephews doing that when they were in elementary school. I haven't seen the shirt yet.

I think I've gotten in over my head with Christmas goodies. Katie's suppose to bring cupcakes, $5 ornament and socks for the elderly on Christmas party day. I thought it would be a neat idea to make all the children little goody bags from Katie. It's nothing much: pencils, homemade ornaments (Katie & I made), holiday poppers, Snowflake sugar cookies and Christmas candy. I haven't made the cookies yet because the party isn't until next week. I really hope I'll be able to make them.

Great Finds
Doug and I have come across some great finds. Here's a couple of good ones, we found at our local Walmart.

Old Fashion Dinner Rolls

During a family get together, I found these rolls at Walmart and decided to try them out. They were really good. In fact, they are very similar to the yeast rolls I've made in the past called "Lighter-Than-Air Overnight Yeast Roll." I made these around Thanksgiving or Christmas time. I pretty much stopped making them as soon as I had Katie. I got tired of trying to find a warm spot to help my bread to rise. I had a difficult time because we like for it to stay around 70-75 degrees year round in our house. In order for these rolls to rise nicely, you need to get them up to 80 degrees. The one thing that helped me is placing them fairly close to the register. The bread still rises if you can't get your temperature up to 80 degrees, it just doesn't rise as nice. The rolls are so good, they melt in your mouth. Here's my recipe:

Lighter-Than-Air Overnight Yeast Rolls
2 (1/4 oz.) envelopes active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (105-115 degrees)
1 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup boiling water
2 large eggs
6 cups all-purpose flour

Combine: yeast & warm water in bowl. Let stand 5 minutes.
Place: shortening, sugar & salt in bowl. Add boiling water; beat medium speed until smooth. Add eggs & yeast mixture, beat low speed until blended; gradually beat in flour. Cover & chill 8 hours.
Shape: 1 inch balls; place 3 balls in each greased muffin cup. Cover & let rise in warm place (85 degrees), free from drafts, 45 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
Bake: 400 degrees for 12 minutes or lightly brown.
Makes: 3 dozen rolls

Dove Peppermint Chocolates

These are delicious! Normally, Doug doesn't like peppermint flavored chocolates, but he really likes this brand. They are a special edition, for the Christmas holiday. So don't waste time, go out to your local Walmart and pick some up.

More Recipes
Oh, I have to give you my Mexican Wedding Cookies recipe as well. I love these cookies, especially around this time of year. They are delicious and so easy to make. I got this recipe from Paula Deen and recommend it to anyone, who loves these cookies.

Mexican Wedding Cookies
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for coating baked cookies
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting hands
1 cup pecans, chopped into very small pieces

Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar at low speed until it is smooth. Beat in the vanilla. At low speed gradually add the flour. Mix in the pecans with a spatula. With floured hands, take out about 1 tablespoon of dough and shape into a crescent. Continue to dust hands with flour as you make more cookies. Place onto prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 40 minutes. When cool enough to handle but still warm, roll in additional confectioners' sugar. Cool on wire racks.

Guess Who's Going To Be In Concert
Man, I heard on the radio this afternoon that my favorite Christmas group will be in Birmingham on January 2nd at the BJCC. TSO aka Trans-Siberian Orchestra will be in concert again, without me. Oh, maybe one year Santa will be nice enough to leave me a ticket under the tree. They were in concert last year and I wanted to see them, but I was too sick. We were afraid that I would have been miserable, which I'm sure I would have been. However, if you are interested in going to the TSO concert, you'll have to check out the BJCC website.

Here's a snippet of this year's concert tour.

I've got so much more to share with you, so you'll have to check back at another time.



Laura said...

OMG!!! That video is AWESOME!!! If I had time this morning, I would play it again. Gotta show it to Wayne-o!! That guy biting his fingernails when the team walked out totally cracked me up!!

I make those Peanut Butter Tassies, too! I'm going to be baking ALL weekend if Wayne can keep Alise out of my hair and if I can start feeling better. Had to go to the doctor and get a shot yesterday. Just a bad cold.

The Thorsrud Family said...

I was looking at your recipes. I also made the pb cup cookies up for Christmas. The buns from walmart are easy, but probably have a lot of artificial ingredients and sweeteners in it. An idea on your bread dough rising: I have a hard time here too in the winter. It's easiest if you place a heating pad with a towel over it, and put your pan of rolls on the top with another towel over all of it. They will be snug as a bug and rise beautifully! And no artificial ingredients/sweeteners. Honey is substituted very easily in bread recipes if you do need sugar in it.