A few shortcuts that I have used over the years of having guests in my home. Perhaps, with all of your busy schedules, these simple tips may be helpful to you.
~Sweetened Sour Cream
Add 3 tablespoons of brown sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla to 1 cup of sour cream. Stir and chill until ready to serve. This recipe tastes like cheesecake without the extra work. I added crushed gingersnaps on top, and serve with a tray of ginger snap cookies, fresh fruits and small chunks of pound cake. It can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
~For an easy, more "elegant" dessert, make a pan of brownies; as soon as they come out of the oven, place Thin Mints over the top. When these melt, drag a knife through the mints in a zigzag fashion. A nice design results, dressing up a plain brownie for company.(and they taste so good!)
This is a simple favorite dip recipe
1 cup finely grated carrots
1 cup real mayonnaise
1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
Mix all ingredients together. Place in a small, ovenproof dish, and bake in a 350 degrees oven for about 20 minutes. The dip will get bubbly and brown. Serve with your favorite crackers .
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons sugar
Saute' the onion in olive oil and sugar over low heat for about 20 minutes or until soft, thickened, and translucent. Use on top of hamburgers, pizza or a roast. Delicious addition.
A package of tiny Christmas bulb ornaments that my daughter purchased for me, from the Hobby Lobby store...
...which happen to add a touch of color to these small packages of mini milk chocolate chip cookies that I wrapped in clear cellophane. I will freeze these as is, until the last few days before Christmas, at which time I will thaw and give out as a token of sharing Christmas joy.
I use simple shortcuts at this time of my life because, I want to have extra minutes in my weekly schedule, to once in a while sit and have "play tea parties" with two very special little girls. These little girls are a small part of a very busy household, with a young, creative, energetic(at times) mother who just happens to be my oldest daughter. Her down-to-earth, quite humorous, and exceptional ability to be able to communicate her life happenings ...can be found at her beautiful blog...thecoffeecottage.blogspot.com/