Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Hanukkah!

Every Hanukkah Mrs. Goldberg bakes apple cakes for her friends at her Temple.  She saves the best one for her two favorite Rabbi's. 


She wraps the cake in festive paper, ties it with a bow and heads for the Jewish Home for the Aged.  Almost every afternoon Rabbi Shapiro and Rabbi Bettelheim can be found in the big recreation room kabitzing.

Tonight and for the next 7 nights the Rabbis will have a piece of apple cake with their glass of Manischewitz and give thanks for their families, the wonderful lives they've led and their friendship.


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Sharing Happy Thanksgiving Thoughts!


Come on in!!

I'm all decorated with all my turkeys-live and fake!!

Have a seat...

I do not like to think of myself as a  "traditional" lady.  I like to think I am an "outside of the box" girl BUT when it comes to holidays I go as close to tradition as the Easter Bunny, the Wicked Witch, the Pilgrims, Mrs. Santa, etc.  You get my drift...  

Every year for many years I was in search of the perfect chestnut recipe.  I tried just about everything and had some real disasters.  Then, a few years ago I came across a recipe that I liked and stuck with it.  Here it is:

Soak the chestnuts in a bowl of water for about an hour.  Take them out and pat them with a paper towel to get off the excess water. Cut an X in the middle of the flat side.  Place them in a baking pan and bake at 400 degrees for about 15-20 minutes.  You can tell when the're done because the cut edges will curl a little.  If you are adventurous, when they come out of the oven sprinkle them with red wine.  I like to serve them warm as an appetizer with drinks so I make them a little before and allow enough time for them to cool before eating.  If you make them ahead of time, wrap them in foil and put them in the oven with the turkey for a little while to warm them. 

The chestnuts will be served in this turkey basket.

Now,  let's talk Turkey!

I came across this post in my Craft Gossip email last week.  I think it's useful and I'm keeping it out for the big day.  If I'm not too frazzled maybe I'll use some of these great tips!


by PRINCESS LACEY on NOVEMBER 21, 2013| 569 Pageviews
1. Butter it up: Rubbing butter under the skin will help baste and keep in flavor with the turkey is roasting
2. Show it off: Opposite of what you might think..don’t cover your bird while roasting. When you cover it it steams the meat and makes the fibers tough.
3.On the flip side: Cook the turkey with the breast side down for at least the first half. This way the breast is getting more of the juices.
4. No Poking:  Resist the urge to slice it open to see if it’s ready. Piercing the meat will release juices. If you need to flip it over do it without piercing it.
5. Patience is Key: After the turkey is done let it rest outside of the oven for at least 30 minutes before carving it. Put foil over it to keep it hot. This way the juices get to settle in and prevent them from escaping when it’s sliced.
During the month of November this wall hanging is on the inside of my front door.

Happy Thanksgiving Everybody!!  Christmas is around the corner!!!  Just the blink of an eye...

Don't stress the small stuff over the holidays.  It could be worse.  You could have the room where your family lives demolished with no idea how to put it back together!!!  With all of our house renovations through the years I can honestly say we always had a memorable holiday with lots of love and good food so I guess you can "weather" anything as long as you are with your loved ones...

 I'll keep you posted!!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Leaves, Leaves and More Leaves!

Halloween week the foliage was at it's peek in New England and it was beautiful.  Two weeks later the leaves are falling fast and we're not so happy about raking...


you're Prince Flip Johnson!  He loves to go outside, play in the leaves and watch his mom and dad tend  their beautiful yard.

Here are some fun ways to bring some leaves indoors.

  This fabric leaf is traced from the leaf pattern below.  I found it on the Internet but you can trace a real leaf or leaves for different shapes.  

Cut out the leaf  pattern leaving extra fabric around the pattern and sew on the trace line.  Trim seams and clip corners.  Turn inside out.  Use an accent color to machine sew veins on the leaves.  I like to use 2 different fabrics for the top and bottom.

Here's another idea

 These jars are so decorative with faux votive candles.  Choose real leaves that are not too dried out and crinkly.  Glue them on Mason Jars (Walmart has tons of them this time of year) using Mod Podge or Gesso .  Let dry.

Now treat yourself!!

  I needed a quick dessert for a party and asked my friend Kim if she had any ideas.  I was amazed when she remembered she had tasted this pumpkin dip at a party and never forgot it!  I should have known better because she saved my daughter Kristen this summer when she had to find a recipe for a camp bake sale.  Kim thought of making easy easy "to die for" Oreo Truffles.  Stay tuned, she promised to share some Christmas recipes.  If they are anything like this dip we are all in for a treat!

This is the easiest recipe I have ever made!  I've made it twice so far and will make it again before the season is over!

1 can pumpkin 
1 package Jello Instant Vanilla Pudding mix
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (I added a little more for extra flavor)
1 16 oz. container of Cool Whip

Mix pumpkin with dry vanilla pudding mix.  
Add Pumpkin Pie Spice
Fold in the whole container of Cool Whip.

I carved out a small pumpkin and filled it with the dip to make it look festive.  Dip with Ginger Snaps, Graham Crackers, fruit or use  your imagination.  Decorate with Candy Corn and a few spiders.  A 16" disc from I-Party (under$1) and covered with black and orange tissue paper served as a tray.

Back soon!!