December 27, 2010

Tuesdays At The Table - Snow Stacks

Did everyone have a good Christmas?  I hope so!

In honor of the ginormous snowstorm here in the North East, I'm sharing snow stacks this week.  I've heard them called other things, but given that we've gotten almost two feet of snow - and that I had to hijack the computer at my parent's house because I don't have power at my house (and the fire department says not to expect it until at least mid-day tomorrow) - I'm just going to stick with "snow stacks".

Lovely Yellow Ribbons

Snow Stacks

2 Cups mini pretzel twists
2 Cups Golden Grahams
1 Cup Cashews
1 Bag White Chocolate Candy Melts (I use Wilton)

In a medium microwave safe bowl, slowly melt the white chocolate candy melts.  Mix in all other ingredients.  On a wax paper lined cookie sheet or tray - drop heaping spoonfuls.  (These spread, so leave plenty of room) Let set and eat!

What's cooking in your kitchen?

December 25, 2010

All That, And I Missed Christmas?!?!

Merry Christmas, everyone!  I hope Santa was generous and brought you everything you wished for.

My Christmas?  Well, let's say that it didn't go as planned.

Christmas morning, I showed up at my parent's house for presents.  Just as we were ripping into our stocking stuffers - Carmella decided to rip into Meadow's head.  Literally.  They are both alphas; so a tussle now and then isn't usually a big deal.

However...this time, I could see Meadow's skull, and it was time to make an emergency trip to the vet's.  Don't worry - my poor little pumpkin is fine.  She was heavily sedated, got stitched up and is now the height of canine fashion in her e-collar.

I was amazed (unpleasantly) by the amount of people that poured into the vet's office on Christmas Day.  We saw pups that had eaten chocolate; pups that ate poinsettia leaves; a cat that ate tinfoil; a dog that escaped and got stuck on a fence trying to return itself home. 

But what broke my heart was a little 7 month old border collie pup.  She got hit by a car and had her leg break clear in half.  Despite that, the sweet little thing was awake, alert and wagging her tail.  What happened next had me really upset.  The pup-daddy was the one that came in, got the consult and saw the vet's estimate.  I watched (and overheard; it just couldn't be helped) as he called the pup-momma and let her know how much it would be to operate to fix the sweetheart.  Pup-momma declared that she didn't a dog that was going to possibly limp all its life and ordered that pup-daddy have the dog put to sleep.  I anxiously observed as he fought to get his pup fixed.  I kept my eyes open as his wife again declared that he should "say goodbye" to his puppy.  And he did it.  He freaking did it.  He told the veterinarian to put that innocent, sweet, fixable puppy to sleep.

I wish I had the money and the guts to ask that man to give me his dog.  That I'd have her fixed.  My heart broke a little for that dog.  My heart broke a little that I couldn't jump in and help her.

I'll admit it.  I cried like a baby for a few minutes.

To keep an eye on a very drugged up Meadow, I had to skip the family dinner. Presents got sent home for me and I have been able to open my gifts from the people that I love and that love me.  Santa (aka my mom) was very generous and I got a Kindle!!  I can't wait to start playing with it.  Seeing as it's supposed to snow between 12-20 inches starting tomorrow, my Kindle should keep me good and entertained between trips outside to shovel.

December 22, 2010

Waiting for Santa Paws

Beckett's a freshy....  I told him he needed to wait a few more days until Santa Paws will show up.  He stuck his tongue out at me.

Brat.  Cute brat.  But still a brat. 
Santa Paws is watching, Beckett!

December 20, 2010

Tuesdays At The Table - Corn Mush & Christmas Memories

Merry Christmas!!! As I mentioned last week – I’m hoping that you’ll share a holiday food memory this week in addition to/instead of a recipe. So many recipes during the holidays are about family traditions, and a vast number of the recipes that I use now are passed down from generation to generation.

I’ve told you all before that my dad was a military brat. Each of the kids in my dad’s family was born in a different city – and the first two were born in Canada. You see, my grandma was from Bonavista, Newfoundland and she didn’t leave there until she had met & married my grandfather and his duty station changed. She grew up on a farm, and was the second oldest of 12 kids. It’s a story for another day – but she essentially raised the youngest seven of her siblings.

Anyway, as a kid I only got to spend Christmas with my dad’s parents every other year. I’m sure that’s true of so many other families too. It’s just fair that way! We would have these HUGE Christmas dinners with my aunts, uncles and a few dozen cousins – plus any of my grandparents friends of neighbors that weren’t feeling like cooking.

As fabulous as those dinners were – they never made the impact on me that breakfast Christmas morning did. My grandmother would start making the “star” of the show Christmas Eve. Canadian Corn Mush. I’ve learned that corn mush is pretty popular in the south too…especially in farm areas. Or maybe it’s just a farm thing no matter where you hail from?!?! As the oldest grandchild, I got to “help”. It’s probably because my brother and I were the only kids that didn’t get to see her all the time, but that time alone in the kitchen with her made me feel so special.

These days, I don’t make the recipe too often. But every time I do, I can still feel her in the kitchen with me.

Lovely Yellow Ribbons

Corn Mush

3 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 tablespoon butter
Hearty pinch of pepper

Flour to dredge (pre-frying)

In a medium pan, bring the water and butter to a boil.  Then, bring the heat down to medium and add in salt, pepper and cornmeal.  Stir constantly until the mixture get thick (oatmeal consistency) and pour into a greased 9x13 pan.

Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Cut the mixture into 1 inch fingers and dredge in flour - being careful to shake loose any extra flour.  In a skillet, melt butter and then fry each side on medium for 3-4 minutes, or until golden brown.  Serve with maple syrup. (I like these with some scrambled eggs, too!)

What's cooking in your kitchen?

P.S. I’ve yet to figure out WHY the U.S. Coast Guard had my grandfather stationed in Newfoundland, Canada. It’s one of life’s mysteries. :-)

December 18, 2010

We Need A Little Christmas

I can't believe that Christmas is a week away!!!  I think I'm as ready as I'm going to get.  How about you?

Here are a few of my favorite Christmas songs...

What's your favorite Christmas song?

December 13, 2010

Tuesdays At The Table - Pecan Praline Cookies

Happy Tuesday, ladies!  Can you believe that Christmas is right around the corner?  I can't!!  December is flying by.  I feel like I have so much to do before I'm ready for Christmas to arrive.

Next week  - in lieu of our usual recipes - I think I want to ask everyone to share their favorite holiday cooking memory instead.  Everyone cool with that?!?!  :-)

Lovely Yellow Ribbons

Pecan Praline Cookies

35 graham crackers
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup butter
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup chopped pecans

Place crackers on ungreased sheet cake pan, covering bottom. Bring sugar, margarine and cream of tartar to a boil. Add nuts. Pour mixture oven the top of the crackers. Bake for 10 minutes at 325. Cool for a few minutes, and remove from pan & cut into bars while still warm. 

What's cooking in your kitchen?

December 08, 2010

Photo Shoot Outtakes

Yeesh, it's hard getting Meadow and Beckett to hold still together for pictures. I get one sitting, and the other one wants to head for the hills. What am I complaining about?  I'm sure it's 10 times harder with kids!!

At least they gave me a few cute shots as outtakes.  :-)

Uh, 'scuze me mom...this would be a good picture if the date wasn't printed across my face.

 Meadow looks like a dork with the date across her face.  You funny, mom!

Make the flashy thing stop.  Isn't funny anymore, mom.

I don't waaaant to be on the Christmas card either.  Go away!

I did get some good shots and am happy with my Christmas card.  If you want to me on my Christmas card list this year, email me!

December 06, 2010

Tuesdays At The Table - Mexican Bean Dip

Happy Tuesday, ladies!!  I had Monday off and now think I'm really done with my Christmas shopping.  Who knows if a last minute gift will be needed...but I think I'm completely prepared for the holidays.  Time to start wrapping gifts! 

How are you doing with your shopping?

Lovely Yellow Ribbons

Last week a group of us went out to eat and we ordered a mexican bean dip.  It was so good!  This recipe is the closest I could find to replicating it.  YUM!  Even better; it's amazingly easy.

Mexican Bean Dip

1 Can Refried Beans (16 oz. size)
2/3 Cup Milk
1/8 tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 Cup of Salsa (Mild, Medium or Hot)
1 Cup Mozzarella Cheese
1 Cup Cheddar Cheese
¼ Cup of chopped green onion.
Sour cream to garnish

Heat the Refried Beans over medium-low heat until they become easy to stir.   Stir in Milk until mixture is creamy and add garlic Powder and Salsa.

Stir in shredded Mozzarella and Cheddar cheese.

Let Simmer over low heat for 5 to 7 minutes.

Pour Bean Dip in small bowl, and garnish with sour cream and a sprinkling of chopped onion.

What's cooking in your kitchen?

December 05, 2010

2010 Christmas Card

Snow Flurries Scarlet Christmas Card
Shop Shutterfly for elegant custom Christmas photo cards.
View the entire collection of cards.
I finally picked a Christmas card.  Act surprised if you get one in the mail, OK?

And if you want a Christmas card from me this year - email me!
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