Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Vibrant colors of the outdoors, are brought inside to brighten up an ordinary rec room and kitchen

The palette of color in the Spring is breathtaking, as you can see by this picture I captured,
while driving on Sunday afternoon.

My sister-in-law is so gifted that she can even turn church fellowship hall tables
into visions of beauty, as she did at our family Easter celebration. 

Lavender and burlap fabric, along with a few nature touches, and
the room came alive with color.

My sister added touches of blue and white at a recent dinner.  Blue hydrangeas look good
in candlelight, and with them, a kitchen table can become a masterpiece.

Another kitchen table has it's moment in the sun, jelly jars and all:)
Remember the simply decorated jars from a previous post?
A bouquet of fresh flowers from the grocery store, placed in a glass
vase, add more touches of color to the table.

Tiny tin pots, purchased years ago, hold small potted pink Asters, and
serve as table favors.  Tags from Michael's Store.

But, better than any colors of nature added to the tables, are the ones that grace the seats
of those tables.  Here my daughter and her thirty year old cousins and friend,
spend rare time together, catching up with happenings in their lives and celebrating three
milestone birthdays.

Thank you for stopping by today!

Sunday, April 27, 2014

"Today is unique!  It has never happened before, and it will never be repeated.  At

midnight it will end, quietly, suddenly, totally.  Forever.  But the hours between now

and then are opportunities with eternal possibilities."  ~Charles R. Swindoll

It is Sunday morning.  I wish you beauty and new opportunities today!

"A quiet morning with a loving God puts the events of the upcoming day

into proper perspective."  Janette Oke

Friday, April 25, 2014

A few jelly jars from the Dollar General Store...
Along with some decorated plastic spoons...
A role of fancy tape...
All inspired by a pretty Hallmark card.

I am hosting a birthday brunch for my middle daughter next week, for a few relatives and friends.
One of her requests, was for fresh fruit and yogurt.  I thought this simple, quick idea would work
in her pink and green theme.  I was inspired by this attractive Hallmark card.  Actually, I think it
is one of the prettiest Hallmark's cards that I have ever seen!

All that was needed for this project...
A bag of inexpensive flower buttons from the Walmart craft section.
A cold glue gun.
Plastic spoons.
Colorful tape added to the ridged section of each jar.

A dab of glue on each button and placed on the top of each plastic spoon.  The variations of this
project, are endless, but for this brunch, this will work.

The jars will look better with the colorful fruit and yogurt in them, but I thought I would share
them with you ahead of time, just in case you want to jazz up some of your jelly jars:)

Another way I might serve the jars, would be to place some vanilla ice cream in each one,
and layer the ice cream with chocolate Oreo crumbs, ending with the crumbs as the top
layer.  This would give the appearance of dirt.  The spoon with the flower, stuck into the dirt,
might give the appearance of small pots of flowers.

These pretty little pink and white muffin cups, were the perfect way to bake some pumpkin
muffins for the brunch.  I was given these for a gift, and always like baking in them.

A few months ago, my husband and I ate at a very special pantry restaurant.  Before our meal,
the server brought us a warm loaf of bread.  We both thought it tasted amazing, and I asked
the server if I could possibly have the recipe.  She said, "sure, you can buy our cookbook",
and I did.

So, now because I like you all, I will share it with you.  When I first saw the recipe, I
thought they made a mistake and eliminated the eggs.  But no, eggs are not needed. 
I sprinkled a bit of my cinnamon/sugar mixture on top of each muffin before baking. 
For our family, these muffins remain a favorite!

That is it for this post.  A touch of color to jelly jars, and a recipe that I feel is worth

Thank you for stopping by today, and like the Hallmark card above states, "you do
make a difference", in all the lives you touch each day.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Last evening was a lovely Spring evening.  We were on our way to our friend's home.

But, as we drove to our destination, we could see the storm clouds rapidly forming.

Storm clouds that were rapidly blocking out the sun, which only minutes before, lit up the
evening sky.

As my husband and I drove along, we were amazed at the transformation above us.  And yet,
despite the dark storm clouds taking over, the sun's rays continued to shine.

Before long though, darkness took over the evening sky. 

The storm was about to hit. 

Then the wind, the rain, and the hail took over with furry.

Within minutes, the sun came back out, and along with it, a double rain-
bow, producing beauty even greater than before the storm.

Isn't that how daily life can be?  All can be going along somewhat smoothly in our lives,
but suddenly, one can sense storm clouds gathering.  The unexpected storms can hit, and
everything changes.  One phone call can change everything.  That is exactly what happened
to our friends at church.  Their family had celebrated Easter together, enjoying each other's
company, only to receive a phone call within hours, that their father and father-in-law had
suffered a major heart attack.  Talk about unexpected storms hitting.

But, fortunately, eventually the storm does pass by, sometimes as quickly as it comes,
but, sometimes not so quickly.   Some storms can last a long time, before the sun appears

Last evening, we were fortunate to see the beginning and the ending of the storm, all within
a few hours time, and even better than that, we were treated to an extra special, refreshing,
treat by our host and hostess.  Angel food cake, with strawberries, blueberries, and a
dollop of whipped cream.  Oh, it tasted so good!

As for our dear church friends, they are still in the midst of a bad storm, and our thoughts and
prayers are going out to them daily.

Thank you for stopping by.

Monday, April 21, 2014

 Just a few "miscellaneous moments" on this Monday morning.

My husband and I were driving from a friend's home recently, and when we went around a corner,
this is what we found on the road.  Actually, there were four huge turkeys slowly walking on the
road.  First time in my life for such a scene.  We stopped and waited until they moved off
the road.  One never knows what one may find on the roads in our part of the country.  I guess
they felt safe knowing Easter was the upcoming holiday and not Thanksgiving:)

My talented sister-in-law is known for her delicious deviled eggs.  She is requested to bring them
to each family dinner.  This time though, she had three "peeps" in the top bowl.  I thought it
was such a cute idea and knew you might like it too. 

Speaking of good ideas, look how she did her carrot, in decorating the dip on the relish tray.
Another creative idea in jazzing up a plate of food. 

Our grandchildren took part in the Easter program, at their little country church.  My husband
and I enjoyed it so much!  Here our granddaughter in her role as an angel at the tomb of Jesus,
sang with two other friends.  I must admit, I was pleased at how beautiful the song sounded,
from the three pretty angels!

After the church service, I snapped this picture of my husband and his grandson, walking and
talking on the trail by the side of the church.  It seemed like they were intense in their
conversation, and I found myself wondering what they were talking about?  Rare, treasured
moments of life.

While waiting for dinner to be served, I watched my daughter and her daughter, playing
"hangman" together.  My thoughts were numerous yesterday, as I observed four generations in one
kitchen, my mother, me, my daughter, and her daughters, and thought of the many Easter
celebrations that we all went through together, over the years.  Another one of those treasured moments.

They had performed in their church Easter program, they had eaten the Sunday meal, they had been
running in the field, and then they had a small Easter egg hunt.  What a busy day for these
little ones.  Finally, time to inspect and taste their egg hunt finds.

Miscellaneous moments make up the days, hours, and minutes of our every week.  Some of them
stick with us for a lifetime, and some are forgotten soon after they happen.  But, today, as
my mind is reminded of the Boston Marathon bombing that took place a year ago on this
exact day, I want to be conscious of the people and the moments that make up each day, and
I never want to take them for granted.  Moments and those who comprise them, are all truly
gifts in the tapestry of our lives.

Let someone you love, know that they matter today.

You all matter to me!  Thanks for stopping by.

I close this post, with a quote from a book on my shelf,
titled, "If Only I Knew", by Lance Wubbels; 

"If Only I Knew...
that I was caught in a trap
of living for tomorrow
and a future that existed
only in my imagination,
I would have slowed my pace,
drawn boundaries around my work,
and taken time for the people I love."

Wow!  This sure spoke to my heart again today, and I pray for it to imprint my mind
throughout this coming week. 

Saturday, April 19, 2014

With little ones in my care at certain times of the week, we
have recently become a "Jell-O" home.
When they are here, they always ask to make more Jell-O.
With this being said, I wanted to make something for dessert, that would excite
them when they come for our Easter meal.
I took seven boxes of different flavors and colors, and went to work on
my simple project.

I took some of my old ice cream dishes, and some other old dishes and set them in a 9 x 13 inch
cake pan.  I would take one box at a time and make it, and then pour a layer in the dishes.  I would
place the pan of dishes in the refrigerator for 45 minutes, and then I would make the next layer,
and carefully pour on top of the previous layer.

It seems like this process would take forever, but it did not.  Throughout the evening, I would
do each layer in between my other kitchen projects.  I used one box of each flavor, and it made
all of these desserts.

As I was filling each one, I did not anticipate how good the layers would look in the unique glass
dishes.  It almost looks like I did the colors according to the ridges in the glass dishes, but I didn't
do that, intentionally. 

And, since they always ask for some of the "white stuff"(as they call it) on top, I will finish
each dessert with some whipped cream and a few colorful jelly beans.

One box filled each glass dish, and with the remainder of the Jell-O, I filled some jelly jars for
another time.  So you can see, each box of Jell-O goes a long way in putting together this
fun, simple dessert.

I had to show you these two pictures from the boys stay here this past week.  They were so happy
to make the Jolly Rancher flavor.  They take the job quite seriously, as you can see by their
concentrated expressions.

Our world is full of color, and because of it, the world is
far more beautiful.

Sometimes, I find myself taking it all for granted in my daily life, but think what our world would
be like without color.

This Easter weekend, I wish you lots of color, and time to recognize it
and enjoy it.
Thank you for stopping by!
Thank you to the Jell-O company for adding
enjoyment to our grandchildren's stays here.
As the name of my blog states, I truly offer only " a little something" here:)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

"Happy Easter" to each one of you!

There is so much beauty everywhere I look now!  For some reason, I thought of the lyrics of this old gospel song by Jim Reeves.  His soothing voice made it a treat to listen to him sing.

"Flowers.  The Sunset.  The Trees"  recorded by the late Jim Reeves.
Written by Mattie O'Neal

"Each time I touch a rose petal
And breathe the sweet fragrance it brings
I know there's a God up in heaven
No human could create these things.
The dogwood, the oak and the willow
So gracefully wave in the breeze,
The dogwood I'll always remember
My Lord died upon one of these.

The sunset in its golden splendor

Such colors no artist can do

I know when I look on its beauty

Each page in the Bible is true.

No picture or painting can capture

The beauty of any of these

The handiwork of God is revealed

The flowers, the sunsets, and the trees."

What a beautiful and alive time of the year!
A holiday filled with promise, hope, and wonder...
Because God has risen!
Thanks so much for stopping here tonight.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

"It is called "Coconut Cashew Crunch".  I was first introduced to it's amazing goodness,
a few weeks ago, at my sister-in-law's dinner table.  It was served to me on top of a scoop
of vanilla ice cream.  I was smitten!  The combination was over-the-top in my book!
You remember of course, if you been visiting this blog for too long:), that I do not
profess to have a sweet tooth.  That being said, I was still smitten.

My sister-in-law found the recipe from a Taste of Home magazine, and she told me that it was one
of her family's favorites.  She told me that it makes a big batch of mix, and keeps well in the
freezer.  So, my friends, if you keep some vanilla ice cream in your freezer, and a large
tightly covered container of this crunch mixture, you will be ready for any unexpected, or
invited guests.  Isn't this so helpful? 

I made my first batch of the Crunch mixture on Saturday, and she was right, it does make
a big portion, and the recipe is not difficult.

I wanted to make a dessert ahead of time for dinner guests, so I took the cooled coconut cashew
crunch, and put a layer on the bottom of a 9 x 13 glass dish.  Then I took a half gallon box of van.
ice cream, removed it from the box, and sliced it in thick layers and laid each slice over the
crunch mixture.  I finished it by adding a top layer of the crunch.  I covered it tightly, and
placed it in the freezer.  When it was time for dessert, I cut individual squares, and placed it
on a saucer drizzled with chocolate syrup. 

I added a chocolate peep for color.  I took this picture, but it sure does not look
like those desserts the fancy restaurants serve.  Oh well, it sure did taste good!  And,
guess what.  There is still some in the freezer, in case you stop in:)

Actually, my sister-in-law gave me a some of this for my birthday, and I think it was a
special gift!  Now, that I made my own crunch, I will give some for needed gifts.  You
can give it in many ways.  I will use clear cellophane bags, or clear plastic cups with lids.
Your friends will really like you!  You can serve the crunch on ice cream, yogurt, or
just dip a spoon in and eat it as it is.

Now, if you are still reading this post, I will share the recipe with you, that she was
so kind to share with me;

Coconut Cashew Crunch

9 cups Rice Krispies
2 cups flaked coconut
1 (8 oz.) can salted cashew pieces
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 tea. vanilla
1/2 baking soda

In a large bowl, combine cereal, coconut, and cashews.  In a saucepan, combine
brown sugar, butter and corn syrup.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring
constantly.  Cook  and stir 5 minutes.
Remove from heat, stir in vanilla and baking soda.  Pour over the cereal mixture,
and toss to coat.
Transfer to foil covered 15x10 inch pans.
Bake in preheated 250 degree oven for 60 minutes, till golden brown,
stirring every 15 minutes.
Cool in pan, on wire rack.
Store in airtight container, freezes well.

Hope you like this as much as we do!

Thanks so much for stopping by on this cool, rainy, windy Tuesday!


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