/*from pinterest*/
Welcome to my new home on the web!

Welcome to my new home on the web!

I’ve almost figured out WordPress and I think I’m going to like it here. Hopefully, you found “my address” all right. Come on inside, have some eggnog, chat a bit.

And to help you with your Christmas shopping, I have put “On the Way to a Wedding” on sale for 99 cents until Sunday.

Do you have all your Christmas shopping done? Are you enjoying your eggnog?

image by Rolf Stengl – isn’t he clever?

Peeling Pomegranates 101

Peeling Pomegranates 101

Have you ever wondered about peeling pomegranates? Every December, the pomegranates show up in the grocery store. 
 
Here is how to peel a pomegranate without getting juice sprayed everywhere.

 

Do you like pomegranates? Do look forward to getting juice stains on everything? What is your favourite Christmas fruit?

pomegranate from photos.com #133986721

Simple Gifts – Poppycock

Simple Gifts – Poppycock

 For this simple gift, I am using a recipe I got from one of my favourite romance authors, Sheila Seabrook. Poppycock (or candied popcorn) is fun to make. Buy some festive tins at the Dollar Store and fill them with this treat!

Here’s how to make it:

Pop enough popcorn to make

  • 8 cups of popped popcorn
Heat oven to 300 degrees.
Using an ungreased cookie sheet, spread
  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • 1 cup whole unblanched almonds

Toast lightly.
Now mix the nuts and popcorn together in a large bowl.

In a heavy saucepan, combine
  • 1 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup margarine
  • 1/2 cup golden corn syrup
  • 1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
Stirring constantly, cook until the mixture forms a soft ball when dropped into cold water. This should take about five minutes.
 
Remove from the stove and stir in
  • 1/2 tsp. soda
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
Careful! The soda can make the mixture foam!

Now pour this goo over the popcorn and nuts and stir with a wooden spoon, until it’s all mixed up. Let the mix cool a bit, stirring occasionally to keep it broken apart. Then spread it out on cookie sheets, and let it cool more, and break it apart. Might as well let it cool overnight. Then fill your tins, and another simple gift is ready to go.

poppycock from photos.com #184002805

Simple Gifts – Tea

Simple Gifts – Tea

For this simple gift, you need:

simple gifts to make for Christmas

a pretty mug

simple gifts to make for Christmas

a selection of tea bags – foil wrapped are best – in different colours

simple gifts to make for Christmas

cellophane

simple gifts to make for Christmas

ribbon

  •  arrange tea bags in the mug
  • wrap with cellophane and ribbon
  • place under tree
Voilà!
 
mug from photos.com #87463086, tea bags from photos.com #95333148 cellophane from photos.com #450451147, ribbon from photos.com #157990364
Simple Gifts – Cookie Mix

Simple Gifts – Cookie Mix

Continuing from last week, here is another simple gift to make for Christmas. This week’s idea and recipe are from my cousin Katy. She got this from her friend Elizabeth as a shower gift. I know it will be perfect for Christmas too. Thank you Katy and Elizabeth!

ELIZABETH’S OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES

Makes 3 – 4 dozen

Preparation:

  1. Empty entire jar of cookie mix into large bowl.
  2. Mix thoroughly with fork.
  3. Add 1 ½ sticks butter softened ** (Note: a stick of butter = ¼ pound)
  4. 1 egg and 1 tsp vanilla
  5. Mix with hands
  6. Shape into balls the size of walnuts.
  7. Place on cookie sheets lined with parchment paper.

Bake at 350F for 9 – 11 minutes.
Cool 5 minutes on cookie sheet then place on a rack to cool.

Ingredients:
2 cups old fashioned oatmeal
½ cup white sugar
¾ cup dark brown sugar *
1 cup white flour mixed with:
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
3/4 cup raisins

Layer in 1 quart mason jar in order given, tapping each layer firmly down before adding next ingredient.

Both brown and white sugars can be reduced slightly. *
 

cookie mix in a jar

cookie mix in a jarSo what colour of ribbon should we put on this one?

cookie jar photos from Katy

Simple Gifts – Soup Mix in a Jar

Simple Gifts – Soup Mix in a Jar

Yes, it’s only the first week of November, but you may be thinking about Christmas gifts. “Soup Mix in a Jar” is a simple one that’s fun to put together, doesn’t cost a lot, and is pleasing to receive.
 

Layer in a 1 cup Mason jar

¼ cup red lentils
¼ cup dried onion
¼ cup wild rice
¼ cup pearl barley
½ tsp celery salt
½ tsp onion salt
½ tsp garlic powder
1 heaping tsp mild curry powder
(add the next item last – to cover the spices)
¼ cup split yellow or green peas

If you are weight watching, ¼ of the batch is worth about 4 points.

Note: the pearl barley has no bran husk but it may have contamination with wheat. So if you want completely gluten-free, leave out the barley and substitute with a different layer.

Print the following on a tag:

 

Soup Mix

In a large soup pot, combine this mix with
  • 1 litre chicken broth
  • 1 cup water
Bring to boil, then simmer 1 hour.
May add crumbled, crispy bacon & parmesan.
Ingredients: red lentils, dried onion, wild rice, split green or yellow peas, pearl barley, celery salt, onion salt, garlic powder, curry powder

 

And then

Loop a ribbon around the jar, attach the tag and you’ve made a little Merry.

Do you like homemade gifts for Christmas?