Tom's 70th birthday

Tom's 70th birthday
50 years of marriage this year September 2017

Sunday, December 26, 2010

HAPPY NEW YEAR/2017




A very happy and blessed New Year to you and your family.    It's so hard to believe another year has passed and that we're all the way up to '2017'!   

The past year held many different and new things for us.  Our family continues to grow.  2016 increased our fold again, and  Joe and Ashley had Emilia Rose our 3rd great grandchild.     The grandkids continue to keep busy with their sports and singing and dancing and getting their licenses and driving.   Yikes. 

I pray that this new year brings good health and happiness for everyone, not only our family, but for yours as well.   There were many who lost loved ones and others whose family is suffering from many different physical and emotional situations.  We know that none of us is ever exempt from sadness or loss---but with the Lord at the helm of our lives, He can make it bearable and He can receive the glory.    My favorite verse is "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."   And, yes I can----and ONLY through and with Him!!


What are YOU going to do for Jesus this coming year?  Only use Him in emergencies, or will He definitely become the LORD of your life??   Don't go another day without Him.  He loves you so much. 



Following is a devotional for the new year from one of my favorite daily devotional books, "Springs In The Valley" by Mrs. Charles Cowman.   I'm sure it will be an enoucouragement and blessing to you, too.


 JANUARY 1, 2017

"For the LORD thy God brings thee into a good land, a land of  brooks of water, of fountains and depths that spring out of valleys and hills;  A land of wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig trees, and pomegranates; a land of olive oil, and honey; A land wherein thou shalt eat bread without scarceness, thou shalt not lack any thing in it; a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills thou mayest dig brass.   When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the LORD thy God for the good land which he hath given thee."  (Deuteronomy 8:7-10).

We are entering upon a new year---surely we cannot but believe, a new age.   If we have rightly learned the lesson of the past, there lies before us a heritage of unspeakable blessing, which none of these vivid metaphors can too strongly describe; infinite sources of blessing, for the fountains and water brooks are but the figures of God's illimitable grace.   For WITH HIM is the fountain of life.

A FOUNTAIN FED BY ETERNAL SPRINGS!

They tell us of boundless supply:  "Bread without scarceness,"  the olive oil that speaks of the Holy Spirit, the honey that tells of the sweetness of His love, and pomegranates that are the seed fruit which speak of a life that reproduces itself in the blessing of others.

They tell of the "nether springs" which flow from the depths of sorrow, in the hard places, in the desert places, in the lone places, in the common places which seem farthest from all that is sacred and Divine.

How delightful it is to have His gladness in the low places of sorrow, and to be able to glory even in tribulations also. They tell us of pleasures that come out of the very heart of trials, treasures wrung from the grasp of the enemy.

How precious the springs that flow into the places of temptation, for there is nothing in life so trying as the touch of Satan's hand and the breath of the destroyer.  Oh, how sweet it is, even there, to find that the light is as deep as the shadow, and heaven is nearest when we are hard by the gates of hell, so that we can COUNT IT ALL JOY WHEN WE FALL INTO DIVERSE TEMPTATIONS, and can say, "Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.

Springs in the valley are very unusual; but He will give us both the upper and the nether springs.”





Monday, December 20, 2010

GEORGIA'S KITCHEN MENU AND RECIPES FOR CHRISTMAS CELEBRATIONS


Menu and Recipes For CHRISTmas Eve Open House AND For CHRISTmas Dinner


Christmas Eve


Baked Ham with cheeses (for sandwiches)
Taco Salad Dip
Party Potatoes
Creamy Cheeseball(Served with assorted snack crackers)
Salami Rollups
Smokies in Barbeque Sauce
Party Pizza
Skyline Chili Con Queso Dip
Bacon Squares
Buffalo Chicken Dip
Deviled Eggs
Vegetable Tray with Dip
Pickles, pepperoncini,black and green olives
Potato Chips, Pretzels, Peanuts
Assorted Cookies, Breads, and Candies
Georgia's Party Punch
Assorted  Flavored  Coffee and Assorted Teas

CHRISTMAS DAY MENU                   

Ham
Party Potatoes
Corn
Green Bean Casserole
Sweet Potato Casserole
Deviled Eggs
Vegetable Tray
Relish Tray
Rolls and butter
Assorted Holiday Cookies
Banana, Nut, Pumpkin Breads
(A lot of this is left over from Christmas Eve, that is if there’s any leftovers)



SPICY CHICKEN WINGS

Ingredients:
4 or 5# bag disjointed chicken wings (small better)
Assorted seasonings and spices (to your liking)
Optional sauce:>
Hot sauce
1 stick margarine

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  On a VERY large cookie sheet, spray with spray margarine (I Can't Believe It's Not Butter) and then place all the chicken wings leaving little space between each.  Lightly spray the wings with the margarine so seasonings will stick and wings will crunch better.
According to your taste, sparingly or plentifully, sprinkle desired seasonings on top of the wings.  I prefer seasoned pepper, seasoned salt, garlic powder, crushed parsley leaves, a touch of cayenne pepper and anything else I have in the cupboard.
Bake in oven for at least 30 minutes.  Check them periodically to be sure they are beginning to brown.  Bake an additional 30 minutes, at which time, you remove the pan and using a metal spatula loosen the wings and turn them over.  You may want to add additional pepper or garlic salt.  It's up to you.
Return the pan to the oven for another 30 minutes.  This is where the eye is better to discern than the clock.   The wings should begin to look crunchy and brown on top as well as bottom.  If needed, turn them over again and return to the oven when you know they are just about ready and put the broiler on (watching carefully) and brown the tops of the wings.
You may need to use the metal spatula again to remove them. Place them on another cookie sheet that has been covered with paper towels to absorb the grease.  Although these are still high in fat, you do NOT have the additional fat that you have fried them in. 

If you desire to have a sauce to dip them in, mix about 4 ounces of hot sauce (Frank's Hot Sauce is best) along with 1 stick of melted margarine.  Heat together in the microwave and stir.. You may pour this on top of your wings or use the sauce to dip them into.  Either way.. or just plain... you will have the best tasting "low fat" wings you've ever tasted

TACO SALAD DIP
 (This is a double serving, but makes a huge platter of dip)

Ingredients:
2 - 8 oz. cream cheese, softened                                                            
1 c. Sour cream
2 T. Chili powder
4 T. Mayo
Bunch of green onions
Lettuce (vegetables are all chopped)
2 tomatoes
Black olives
12 oz. Shredded cheddar
Salsa
Tortilla chips

Mix cream cheese, sour cream, mayo, chili powder, a couple shakes of garlic salt, and the white bottoms of the green onion chopped together and mix well.    Spread evenly on the bottom of the tray.   Layer with chopped lettuce, tomato, and the green onion tops.  The black olives are optional, but pretty.  Finish with the shredded cheddar.  Serve and scoop up with the tortilla chips and add salsa if you like.



CHEDDAR CHEESEBALL

Ingredients:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
8 oz. mild cheddar
4 oz. sharp cheddar (cheeses should be shredded)
1/2 medium onion finely chopped
A few green olives

 When the cheeses are all softened thoroughly, mix well with an electric mixer until pretty smooth.
To this, add the onion and olives and a shake of garlic salt. Mix again well. Refrigerate until it is firm enough to handle and form into a ball. Serve plain or decorated with sliced olives or shredded chipped beef.



CREAMY CHEESE SPREAD

Ingredients:
2 - 8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
4 – 6 oz. French onion dip
2 green onions, chopped
3 oz. real bacon bits
6 oz. shredded sharp cheddar
½ roma tomato chopped very fine (opt.)
Any variety snack crackers

Mix all well together until smooth and blended. Put spread into an appropriate sized bowl.  Wrap and cover to keep fresh and serve with crackers.




MEATBALLS AND JALAPENO DIP
Ingredients:

2 pounds ground beef
2 eggs
2/3 c. dry bread crumbs
1 med. onion, chopped
1/2 c. milk
2 tsp. worcestershire sauce (opt.)
1 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. pepper

 Heat oven to 400 degrees. Mix all ingredients and shape ground beef mixture into 1 and 1/4 inch balls. Place meatballs in baking pans. Bake uncovered until light brown, about 20 to 30 minutes. Drain. And put aside until you add to dip.

Dip:
 1 package 16 oz. Velveeta (cubed)
1 can Rotel (tomatoes with chili peppers)
2 cans Campbell’s nacho cheese soup
1 can Campbell’s cheddar cheese soup
1 or 2 jalapeno peppers (opt.)  chopped fine

Dice the peppers and add and mix with the melted Velveeta and tomato mixture.. Heat until the mixture is hot and not scorched. Add meatballs to this and stir carefully.  Preferably, put this into a crock pot and keep on low heat for about another hour before serving.
Meatballs can be served and eaten with toothpicks while the cheese sauce can be dipped with tortilla chips.



KOLBASSI CHUNKS (or Hillshire Farms Smokeys) IN BBQ SAUCE

Ingredients:

3 pounds Hillshire Farms Polska Kolbassi (or your favorite)
 1 bottle favorite BBQ Sauce

Cut kolbassi into nice sized chunks. Place in a crock pot and add bbq sauce and toss until mixed well.  Put on lid and cook at medium high heat for 3 to 4 hours or until the flavors have mixed.



SALAMI ROLLUPS

Ingredients:

1/2 pound thinly sliced hard salami
1- 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese

Spread  1/2 tsp. of cream cheese mixture onto the slice of salami and roll up.   After you complete them all, put on a plate, covered with plastic wrap and chill.  A really neat and quick addition to any party!!


PARTY PIZZA (or Hanky Pankies)

Ingredients:

2 loaves light party rye
1# roll sausage (hot) - browned and drained
1/2 onion, chopped and cooked with sausage
1 pound Velveeta
1 T. Worchesershire sauce
 1 tsp. Oregano
 Dash garlic salt

After sausage and onion are cooked, tender, and drained, add the cut up velveeta into  frying pan and stir until melted.  Add the remainder of ingredients. Spread on party bread slices. Place on cookie sheet and cook at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes. Take out and serve hot. (This also can be made ahead and baked when needed).



BACON SQUARES

Ingredients

1 c. Mayonnaise
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. Garlic salt
2 c. Shredded cheddar cheese
8 slices bacon, crisply fried and crumbled
4 green onions, sliced
14 slices white bread

Heat over to 400 degree. Mix all ingredients together. Spread about 2 -3 Tbsp. Over each slice of bread - end to end. Bake on ungreased baking sheet 10 minutes or until cheese is melted. 


Cut each slice into quarters with pizza cutter.  Serve hot. (Can be made ahead and frozen and then baked when needed).  Makes 56 appetizers.


GEORGIA'S POTATO SALAD

Ingredients:

5# potatoes, boiled, skinned, and cubed
3 eggs, boiled and cut up                                                          
32 oz. jar Mayonnaise
Italian dressing
Yellow mustard
Green onions (bunch), chopped
Carrots (baby), about 5 cut up
1/2 stalk celery (including leaves), chopped
Garlic salt
Ground black pepper


Cook the potatoes and after they are cool (or easy enough to handle by
hand), peel the skins and cube and place into a large bowl.  Add the cut
up hard boiled eggs at this time.   Sprinkle approximately 4 oz. of Italian
dressing and a large squirt of yellow mustard on the potatoes.  Shake
and mix and let sit for at least a half hour (enough time to cut up veggies).

In the meanwhile, chop all the vegetables (not too fine) and mix very
carefully with a heavy duty spoon (preferably wooden).  Start with about
two cups of mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon garlic salt, and 1 heaping teaspoon of
black pepper.  Again mix very carefully, but thoroughly.  You want to be
sure to mix all the flavors, but not to mash up or break up the potatoes.

At this time, taste the mixture and see if the flavors have mixed and
if there is enough salt and mayonnaise.  If not, add more a little at a
time until the flavor and consistency match.

Cover and set in the refrigerator to chill at least two hours.  The longer
it sits, the better it tastes. 



PARTY POTATOES
Makes 8 to 10 servings

Ingredients:

5 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled, reserve 1 Tbsp. drippings
1/2 cup chopped onion
8 to 10 large potatoes, cook as for potato salad with skins on
2 cups (8 oz.) shredded cheddar cheese
1 (8 oz.) container French onion sour cream dip
1/2 c. milk
1 and 1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a small skillet, cook onion in drippings until transparent. In the meanwhile, peel the cooled, cooked potatoes and cube them.  Put into a large bowl all the ingredients, except 1/2 the bacon and 1/2 cup cheese.

Spread into buttered 13 x 9 inch baking dish and top with reserved cheese and bacon.
 Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until bubbly. Refrigerate leftovers.
*TIP: Can be made ahead...do not bake.. cover and refrigerate until baking time!



PUNCH BOWL POINTERS

Ingredients should always be chilled before mixing.  Carbonated beverages should always be added just before serving.
Ice Molds:  A ring or block of ice will keep punch cold longer than ice cubes will, as does freezing part of the fruit juice you will be using and adding it to the punch frozen.  And there will be no loss of flavor when the fruit juice starts to melt!
To unmold a decorative ice ring, dip it in warm water for a few seconds.  Almost any pretty container will do for an ice mold:  gelatin molds, metal bowls, ring molds or special occasion molds (trees for Christmas, hearts for showers of Valentine's Day)  Let your imagination be your guide.

Fancy Ice Cubes:  Use frozen cubes of tea, lemon, lime or orange juice for fruit punches, and frozen coffee or cocoa cubes for mocha punches.

Or try this: fill ice cube trays 1/2 full of water or juice and freeze.  Place a strawberry, raspberry, cherry, grape, melon ball, pineapple cube, lemon or lime wedge in each section: add enough very cold water to cover and freeze.  Once frozen, the cubes can be stored in plastic bags in the freezer.

TIP!!!!! Remember: When adding water at any stage to decorative ice molds or fancy ice cubes, the water should be very cold to avoid melting them.

SPARKLING HOLIDAY PUNCHES

STRAWBERRY SPRITZER

Ingredients:

3 - 10 oz. frozen strawberries
6 cups white grape juice
1 - 28 oz. bottle carbonated water OR
1 liter lemon lime soda

Keep strawberries at room temperature for 20 minutes.  Put 2 packages into a food processor and cover and blend til smooth.  Combine blended strawberries, grape juice and remaining strawberries.  Squeeze into this the juice of one lime.  Place into a punch bowl and pour the soda or carbonated water over and gently mix.  Makes 24 - 30 servings.




TROPICAL PUNCH

Ingredients:

6 medium bananas, ripened
12 oz. frozen lemonade
10 cups water
1 can frozen 12 oz. orange juice
1/2 c. sugar
1 - 20 oz. can crushed pineapple with juice
1 - 2 liter Lemon lime soda
Melons balls, 1 lime, 1 kiwi (peeled and sliced)

Process the bananas with lemonade in a food processor until smooth....Add the water, orange juice and sugar and mix well.  Freeze in loaf pans covered with plastic wrap until needed..When ready for party ...place this frozen, slushy mixture into punch bowl and slowly add the soda....stirring carefully....Place melon balls, kiwi, and lime on top to float...maraschino cherries also look very festive for Christmas....Yummy...
(Approximately 25 - 8 oz. servings)



GEORGIA'S HOLIDAY PUNCH

Ingredients:

1 - 46 oz. can of Hi C or Hawaiian Punch
1 - 12 oz. frozen lemonade, mixed with 3 cans water
2 - 2 liters Sprite or Squirt or 7 Up (depending on your taste)
1 - 20 oz. can crushed pineapple (don't drain)
1 small can mandarin oranges
1 frozen package strawberries
1 kiwi - peeled and sliced
1 lime - washed and thinly sliced
1 quart Rainbow colored sherbert

Empty all the cans and packages of fruit into the bottom of the punch bowl.  Add the diluted lemonade, Hawaiian Punch, and mix slowly.   Empty the container of sherbert on top of this and pour slowly the 2 liters of Sprite. Stir slowly breaking up the sherbert.  On top of this place a few of lime slices and kiwi and let them float.  I have a huge punch bowl and go through 5 batches of this for the night.  When  one batch is done.  I may not add quite as much fruit each time.  Experience will help you decide.



CREAMY PINEAPPLE ORANGE REFRESHER PUNCH

Ingredients:

1 - 46 oz. can of pineapple juice
1 1/2 pints vanilla ice cream
1 quart orange sherbert
2 liters gingerale

In a punch bowl, place the vanilla ice cream and orange sherbert.  Slowly add and stir in the pineapple juice and then the gingerale.  It's best to make punch in this amount for one batch and make more as needed for the size of your group.



PINA COLADA REFRESHER

Ingredients:
2 cups pineapple juice
2 - 6 oz. containers pina colada yogurt
1/2 cup cream of coconut
Pineapple tidbits/ maraschino cherries

In a blender, mix all the ingredients til smoooth and creamy. Place into tall glasses with crushed ice and top with pineapple tidbits and a cherry for decoration.  Serves 4 large glasses or 6 smaller ones.

           

RECIPES FOR CHRISTMAS DAY..

BAKED HAM
I usually buy a whole bone-in ham. The brand name that I use and just love is Cumberland Gap Ham.  I don't know if it's just in this area or nationwide, but it is the BEST ham. Even their boneless is great. Not watery, but nice and firm and tender and flavorful.
The only thing that I do is what my mom used to do.  Make a glaze of about a cup of brown sugar and add to this a couple hefty squirts of brown mustard and 1/4 cup of honey.  Mix well until it forms a thick paste. (If you need more mustard, then add to it). Score with a sharp knife in a diamond pattern making cuts 1/8-inch deep and one inch apart. Coat the ham all over with this paste after you have placed it into a shallow  foil-lined pan. Put ham fatty side up.  Do NOT cover the ham with foil or add water to the bottom.  If you seal the ham with foil and add the water, it will tend to steam the ham, which ruins the flavor.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Bake for 3 hours.  Add a little water to the bottom of the pan and then spoon glaze that has dripped into pan bottom over ham and bake for 20 minutes. At this time, place foil loosely like a tent to keep ham from burning on top.  Raise oven temperature to 325 degrees and glaze again. Bake an additional 20 minutes. Glaze once more and bake 15 minutes. Cool before carving into thin slivers.



GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE

Ingredients:

3-16 ounce cans cut green beans (drained)
1 can Campbell's Cream Of Mushroom Soup
4 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
Durkee Fried Onions (can)

In a 3 quart casserole dish, combine the drained green beans along with soup and shredded cheddar cheese.
Mix well and place into a 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes.  Remove from oven and sprinkle the fried onions on top til covered.  Return to the oven for an additional 25 minutes uncovered (so the onions will crisp up).



SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE

Ingredients:

3 cups mashed sweet potatoes
1 cup sugar
1/4 c. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. margarine
1 tsp. salt

Topping:
1 c. chopped pecans (walnuts)
1/2 stick margarine
1 c. light brown sugar
1/2 c. flour

Mix together the first 8 ingredients.  Spread in a 9 x 12 greased pan.  Mix the remaining ingredients and spread on top.  Bake at 300 degrees uncovered for 30 to 40 minutes until the top is crispy.



DEVILED EGGS

Ingredients:

1 dozen eggs (hard boiled, cooled, and peeled)
Light mayonnaise
Yellow mustard
Ranch dressing
Garlic Salt
Pepper


Slice the eggs in half lengthwise.  Put the cooked yellows into a bowl and place the white halves on a plate.  After all the eggs have been cut and separated, mash and mix up the yellows until they are as fine and smooth as possible.  To this add about 4 heaping tablespoons mayonnaise, a hefty squirt of yellow mustard, and two tablespoons of ranch dressing.  With a mixer, blend these all together until smooth and creamy.  Add just enough garlic salt and pepper to taste.

With a teaspoon drop enough mixture into the center of the whites to make it look full and rounded (not flat).  For an added touch, (if you like, you may add a shake of paprika or some finely sliced green olives).   If not, just leave them plain, cover with plastic and refrigerate until needed.



CHRISTMAS COOKIES

RUSSIAN TEA CAKES(aka Wedding Cookies)


3/4 c. softened margarine
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 c. all purpose flour
1/2 c. finely chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all ingredients well and roll into walnut size balls.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 10 - 12 minutes.  Place an additional bowl of powdered sugar aside..and while the cookies are still warm, roll them in the powdered sugar and place on plate.....When totally finished....roll once more.  Let them totally cool before you store them in container.




HOLIDAY SHORTBREAD COOKIES

INGREDIENTS:


2 and 1/4 c. all purpose flour
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. margarine, softened
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/4 c. milk
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. vanilla

Add together dry ingredients.  Cut in margarine until mixture resembles fine crumbs.  Add eggs and milk, and vanilla and mix with fork. Roll 1/4" thick on a well-floured board.  With cookie cutters, make cookies and place on a greased cookie sheet.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 10 - 15 minutes.  Makes 2 dozen.


SLICED REFRIGERATOR COOKIES

INGREDIENTS:
3/4 c. margarine, softened
1 and 1/2 c. brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 egg
1  tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
2  tsp. baking powder
3 c. all purpose flour
1 c. finely chopped walnuts

Mix all ingredients well starting with the margarine, brown sugar, cinnamon, egg, and vanilla.  Then add the salt, baking powder, flour and walnuts.   The dough will be easy enough to mold into 2 or 3 logs.  Wrap in wax paper or plastic wrap and refrigerate.  This can be done days ahead and then you can bake them any time.

Bake at 350 degrees for ABOUT 10 to 12 minutes.  You slice them about 1/4 thick and place on lightly greased cookie sheet.  When you see the edges begin to brown, remove from oven and let cool about 5 minutes before you remove them from the sheet.
These are great cookies to eat with coffee, tea, or hot chocolate.  Almost like butter pecan... especially if you use REAL butter in place of the margarine.  They can be keep pretty long in a well-sealed container in a cool place.



FESTIVE FUDGE
  
Ingredients:

3 cups (18-ounce) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
Dash salt
1/2 to 1 cup chopped nuts, optional
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Line 8- or 9-inch square pan with foil. Butter foil; set aside.  Line medium-sized heavy saucepan, over low heat, melt chips with Eagle Brand and salt. Remove from heat; stir in nuts if desired and the vanilla. Spread evenly into prepared pan.

Chill 2 hours or until firm. Turn fudge onto cutting board; peel off foil and cut into squares. Store covered in refrigerator.

Yield:  about 2 pounds.

Peanut Butter Glazed Fudge: Omit nuts. Stir 3/4 cup peanut butter flavored chips in with vanilla. Spread in pan and chill as above. For glaze, in small saucepan, melt 1/2 cup peanut butter flavored chips with 1/2 cup whipping cream; stir until thick and smooth. Spread over chilled fudge. Chill. Cut and store as above.
Marshmallow Fudge: Omit nuts. Stir 2 tablespoons butter in with vanilla. Fold in 2 cups miniature marshmallows. Proceed as above.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Chilling Time: 2 hours