- What a wonderful Sunday Morning we had!! I spend probably too much time thinking about all the time we miss out on - exploring new things, tastes, talents, interests, opportunities, when we are just sitting at home avoiding the Corona. There doesn't seem to be many occasions for us to connect in a joyful bridging manner. The truth is that we like vastly different things, and that can limit us even in unCorona times.
Before Christmas, an event came across Facebook for a painting class. I had seen them before, but either hadn't liked the picture or didn't like the time frame of the class. I had seen this particular event, though, because my childhood friend - not even in the continental US had expressed interest in it. So I said that I was interested. Then I got a notification that my HUSBAND was interested in the painting class!! NO WAY!!!! I decided then and there that we were going to do it together and was excited and pleased to no end.
I purchased all the supplies that I didn't already have 3 weeks before the class started. That was how excited I was! Then I had to wait....
The class started on a Saturday at noon. I didn't think anything of it, because it was an on demand class and we could do it anytime we wanted for the next week. Apparently, Craig had told his sister that we were going to do it that night (wow!), I suggested the next day.
Then, Sunday, Craig told me he was setting up the garage for our painting class. WHAT?!? Where is my husband and what have you done to him I wanted to ask! Anyway, we had a few wonderful hours of time together, connecting in that preCorona virus way that I had missed so much. It just meant the world and more to me. Here are some of our pictures from that day. If you are interested in one of the classes, click here! Take a look at some of our progress from Sunday and let us know if you try a painting class!! And don't forget to send pictures!!!!
I made this shirt to remind myself that I don't have to like the way things are, but I do have to have the resolve to go forward. What a year 2020 has been! 2021, you will see me "Bucking it Up" and moving forward in (at least for me) exciting new ways. I have some great news that I am ALMOST ready to share with you! If you would like a shirt like mine, you can get it here See you soon!!
Okay, you guys. We are still going strong on this $20 ham we bought for our New Year's Day dinner. So let's go through what we've made with it.
New Year's Day Dinner - Plain ham with baked beans and Macoroni sides
Split Pea Soup
Ham and Cheese Hand Pies
Ham and Cheese Pasta Salad
Montana Scalloped Potatoes
but guess what?!? We STILL have ham left. Like half a gallon bag. I'm going to need your ideas now!!
This is another recipe that I am only going to show pictures of because you can literally do it however you want. If you use more or bigger potatoes, you'll want more rue. If you like things supper cheesy, you'll use more cheese. If you like more mellow, you'd change to mozzarella. If you are like my Rhett Buttler, you'd probably prefer hamburger to ham. You do you, boo....Just follow the basic guidelines and you will have a hit!!
Here is my initial ingredients - except that I forgot the onions. Don't like onions? Leave them out! Maybe don't use purple onions because they will turn black.
First, I cooked onions in butter for about 3 - 5 minutes, added spices. Then I added about 2 1/2 Tablespoons of flour. I cooked that for about 2 minutes over medium. I added 1 1/4 cups of milk and let it thicken, and then most of the cheese and let it melt.
In a casserole, I placed one layer of potatoes, then all the ham, and then the remaining potatoes. I poured the rue over it all, but it did not cover the potatoes, so I poured milk in until all of the potatoes were covered.
The casserole was covered with foil and placed in a 350°F for an hour. After an hour, I checked and the potatoes were not done. Cooked another 2 hours to have potatoes completely done and that nice black ridge around casserole that my husband loves.
Okay, I'm going to go and freeze the rest of this ham!! Let me know what your favorite ham recipes are for when I can eat it again!!
If You Give a Girl a Ham and Pasta Salad
The title of this article is a one off on If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by by Laura Numeroff. It can also go with the saying, "If you give a man a fish, he will eat for a day. If you teach a man to fish, he will eat for a lifetime". Well, if you give this girl a ham, she will be eating for at least a month. As well as....If you give this girl a ham, she will need some macaroni, cheese, onions, barbeque sauce, mustard, split peas, potatoes, biscuits, bread, and mayo.
We always have a ham on New Years because it goes good with beans, and everyone knows that you must eat beans on New Years in order to have good luck throughout the new year. Lord knows we need it more than ever this year, so I got a big ham to go with a lot of beans. Now before you all write and comment that it isn't beans but black eyed peas that bring luck, I need to let you know that I live in Montana, and I've never been in a restaurant or home that served black eyed peas, so we eat BEANS :)
This recipe is so easy, we can do it in only a few words and pictures. No measurements will be given. This is your salad, so you add as much or as little as you want! If you add anything new and exciting to yours, please let me know about it! I probably want to try it, too!
If You Give a Girl a Ham Pasta Salad
Add some onion to a bowl, then ham, then cheese, then a little pickle juice.
Then Salt and Pepper
Mix it up
Cool in the refrigerator for at least two hours.
I've also made Split Pea Soup and Scalloped Ham and Potatoes. I only have about 4 pounds left to find something else to do. I was thinking ham and cheese calzones. Do you have any ideas?
Who'd have a mind to disagree? I've travelled the world and the seven seas. Everybody's looking for something..... Oh, excuse me. I just got caught up in the song! If you are too young or just can't remember it - Here it is! Just notice that I change the words to suit myself lol!
This cake is definitely a dream. A super rich, decadent dream. Thank goodness for friends and neighbors, because I really should not eat the whole thing without worrying about getting diabetes. A super special treat is in order sometimes and this hit the spot. I hope that it will hit your sweet spot, too!
This is a basic "poke" cake - meaning that after the cake is baked and still warm - you take a straw and poke holes all over it and then pour the "sauce" on it. And after that comes the frosting! Oh, my lawd!! Save me now! Three layers of chocolatey goodness!
*Note to anyone not liking Baileys Irish Cream - replace with milk. Note that a downloadable, printable recipe is at the bottom :)
Let's get this chocolate show started!
You will need:
For the cake
2 Cups all purpose flour
2 Cups sugar
3/4 Cup cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup milk
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup Baileys Irish Cream, divided
1 tsp vanilla
1 Cup sweetened condensed milk
3/4 Cup semi sweet chocolate chips
Whipped Cream Topping
2 Cups heavy whipping cream
3/4 Cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
mini chocolate chips
I've waited for you for a good long 9 months!! The longest 9 months ever, anywhere. I have plans for you 2021. To bad all my plans start with a vaccine. But the vaccine will get around to the little people eventually, right?
My 2021 To Do List:
I love after holiday sales! My Rhett Butler (aka husband) says we should just give money for gifts to go after holiday shopping. It's a good idea, but I like the surprises, too, haha!
I'm not really excited about being in crowds of Corona Virus, so most of my post holiday shopping has been online. I did, however, wait for everyone to go to work Monday morning, and then made a quick dash to Hobby Lobby. Christmas was 75% off! AND some of the things they considered Christmas, I considered prized possessions for all year long!!
Each of these items were between $4 and $6! I'm thinking about hanging them on the empty wall in my kitchen....or not. They would all look great anywhere!
The basket shows the real items I went to Hobby Lobby for hee hee hee. I want to do an online paint and sip party with my husband on January 16th and went to Hobby Lobby to get the supplies for the painting we will be completing. If you want to do it with us, here is the link:
Free Paint and Sip Event
It is hosted by Jesse Robertson & Keep It Colourful Paint Nights and here is a picture of the painting we will be completing!
Isn't it beautiful!?! If you sign up, let me know!! I want to find out how yours turns out!!
My handsome husband let me in on a secret. He didn't want to get our fake tree down for Christmas. I'm not sure why but it begins with he's been really cranky and not in the Christmas spirit at all.
I, however, need the jolliness of Christmas to get me through the pandemic. So I need a tree. But I also need my husband. So we came to an agreement. He didn't have to get the tree down IF he would go look at people's Christmas lights with me. Wow! He agreed!!!! So I put up my own tree.
Now I just have to decorate it. And maybe get a cat. This tree would go great with a cat!!
Every year, we send family in Utah something to do on Christmas Eve. We've sent games, nerf guns, pajamas, Sunday toppings, all kinds of things. This year, I wanted to send the fixings for hot chocolate.
Now anyone that knows me knows that the wrapping is part of the present. I just love fun creative ways to give gifts. Hot chocolate really needs something to make it "pop". So here is what I did.
First I cut out these little treat bags on the Silhouette. They are an easy enough pattern that it would be simple enough to just cut with scissors and a paper punch if you didn't have some sort of cutting machine.
I found really cute glass ornaments at Hobby Lobby. Then I just made homemade cocoa mix - but I put it in the blender so that it looks more like commercial cocoa mix - and funneled it into the ornaments. I went ahead and put the ingredients on a tag because the family we are sending them to sometimes doesn't eat certain things.
Oh, they look so pretty all packaged up!! I want to keep one! For the hot cocoa toppings, the only thing I had to do besides repackage into cute little jars was chop up marshmallows. I chopped them in powdered sugar so they wouldn't stick together.
We do send regular gifts, too, but I can't tell you what they are. It would ruin the surprise! What are some things you do to put a little "pop" into the holidays?
Update to what was written below:
My son, Wilson was a close contact through work and had been home on quarantine since the 7th of November. He called me last week and asked if he took a test and continued quarentine - could he come home for Thanksgiving............Yes! So now we will need to add Grandmother's Famous Fruit Salad to the menu and I am so happy, I could just, oh gosh I don't know what I could do, but I'm happy!
Well, I'm not going to lie. We are downgrading Thanksgiving this year. We are hibernating at home trying to avoid the Corona so it will just be Craig and I. So, although I want an easier menu to cook, I do want to do some festive things like zoom friends and family and set a beautiful table.
After dinner, I am super excited about getting all the Christmas decorations out. Then the presents wrapped and ready to send. Then Hallmark movies and crafting. What a glorious long weekend! And the leftovers. Really looking forward to those.
What are your plans? How are you trying to make this year special with all of the limitations?
I am a recently retired small town librarian living the dream in Montana in my boujee yet redneck kind of way. Married to a mining engineer and mother to two wonderful young men.