Life is good in the trailer hood!

Archive for December, 2012

Countdown…New Year’s Eve

Well, Christmas day has come and gone, and now we are counting down to the New Year and thinking about resolutions!

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After our first white Christmas since 1975, the year my daughter was born, I am not complaining that we are snowed in! I love the snow, and as I don’t have anywhere to go, we are just enjoying a lazy day… all snugly and warm.

Now it is time to think of the new year. Resolutions are made, and in my case, forgotten on January 2.  This year, though, I do have one year that I want to make sure I do.

RACK is Random Acts of Christmas Kindness (I prefer Random Acts of Christian Kindness!)  I have just challenged my Facebook friends to join me on the page I created to share ideas! Wouldn’t it be amazing, the  number of acts of kindness that would be performed, if we just did one a day, every day? Come join us!

Lots of people have traditions for this holiday, too!  Some people go out and party, others stay in and celebrate with the family. For my sisters and I, and our guys, we have always enjoyed turning on the karaoke machine and singing our little hearts out, between lots of breaks for snacking! Check out my Pinterest boards here for yummy appetizers and desserts!

Lime in the Coconut Macaroons ...I thought I would pin my own cookie recipe I baked for this past weekend. Several have asked for the recipe, so I thought I would share with my followers, too. @Pat McGowin @Vicki Shaw..You wanted it, you got it! Evie!

If you don’t have a karaoke machine, you can sing for free online from your computer at this website. They have many songs to choose from!

Some people think they must eat black-eyed peas for good luck!  Here’s a recipe that sounds yummy I found it at Pauladean.com!

Black-Eyed Pea Dip

Photo belongs to Pauladean.com!

I found these cute cookies over at Annie’s Eats!

Over at yesterdayontuesday.com blog, links to some really clever ideas for New Year’s party will inspire you to celebrate the good times. Check it out here! Countdown to New Year’s Eve

So what are you planning for New Year’s Eve, and do you have any resolutions? Please share with me!

Thought since it we are, again, counting down the days, someone might get some use from this post! Merry Christmas!

Evie's Gardens

School is out for the rest of the year, and it’s cold outside!

What can you do while the kids are home, and impatiently waiting for the ‘big day’ to arrive?

I adapted a Pinterest pin and we made Rudolph Hot Chocolate Mix. (We made ours for the kids’ teachers.) Makes great last-minute RACK (random acts of Christmas kindness) gifts for the neighbors, friends, and family.

This is an easy craft and the children can help!

For each Rudolph you will need:

1 Wilton decorating bag

2 Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate packets

Handful of miniature marshmallows

Small handful of chocolate mint M and M’s

2 googly eyes (attach with Tacky glue)

Curling ribbon or any tying material

1/2 metallic red pipe cleaner for nose

1 metallic red pipe cleaners for antlers

Directions for Rudolph Chocolate Treats:

Empty packets of hot chocolate mix in bag.

Next drop in marshmallows, followed by…

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Prayers for Newtown Connecticut

Prayers for Newtown Connecticut

How to Store Leftover Pasta

Yesterday I posted a recipe for the  spaghetti sauce we served in our restaurant…

which got me to thinking about noodles…

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then time savers and saving money.

I know…

I am random!

If you are short on time during the holiday season, (or anytime) you can save some valuable meal time by preparing a spaghetti meal ahead of time!

Spaghetti sauce is better the next day, no matter what recipe you use. Mine makes several gallons, although you may have a recipe you love with less servings.

Or you can grab the spaghetti sauce recipe and can some, it will save a lot of time when you need it later!

Same thing with noodles, cook them ahead of time. This should work with any kind of pasta.

After cooking your spaghetti noodles al dente, immediately stop the cooking process by immersing in ice-cold water. This will stop the breakdown of the starch, and the pasta won’t get gummy and  stick together.

Cook and store in the fridge in a container of water just covering the pasta. It will keep for a good while.

To reheat noodles…

  • Immerse in boiling water until noodles are hot, then use a colander to drain or a slotted spoon.
  • Or drain noodles and heat it in the microwave on a plate.

Throw together a quick salad, or open a packaged bag of salad, grill some garlic bread and you are good to go! (The kids can help do this!)

Try it and let me know what you think!

Share your kitchen time saving tips!

Have a great Christmas season! ~Evie

Spaghetti Sauce Recipe For A Crowd

spaghetti sauce

This photo is property of public domain.

Need spaghetti sauce for a crowd, or for canning?

Several years ago we ran a small restaurant, the owner of the building (RIP) shared his know how with me for spaghetti sauce and some of the best chili ever (in my humble opinion!)

Several of the women over at the Canning Granny blog requested the recipe, so I thought I would share with you all!

Even if you don’t want to can it, it makes a large amount, and can be made ahead of  serving time for large gatherings!

The ingredients:

  • 5 pounds ground beef
  • 1 gallon stewed tomatoes
  • 1 gallon tomato sauce
  • 1 or 2 Tbsp Italian Seasoning
  • 1 Tbsp oregano
  • few bay leaves
  • 3 bell peppers, chopped
  • 6 onions, chopped
  • 2 large cans (8 oz.) mushrooms (stems and pieces)
  • 2 packages spaghetti sauce mix (to thicken)
  • 4 Tbsp. minced garlic (or garlic powder)
  • paprika (to color)

This is how he showed me to make the sauce. You will need a  three gallon stock pot or something of similar size.

Chop peppers and onions. Add all  ingredients except for the ground beef in a stock pot. (It doesn’t matter what order.)

Tear chunks of the ground beef about 3/4 inch to an inch in diameter and drop into the sauce.

Cook until the meat is thoroughly cooked.

Remove bay leaves.

I would love your opinions on canning this, because as I said, I have only prepared it for the restaurant.

I wonder about omitting the mushrooms, possibly using another thickener, with some tomato powder.

This at least will give you an idea of quantities and seasonings.

Would love to hear what you think!

Hope this helps!

Have a blessed day! ~ Evie

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