Saturday, December 28, 2013

Christmas and all things wonderful

Christmas one of my favorite times of the year.  In our house it is all about spending time with the family, eating great food, watching the expression of our son open his unexpected gifts and playing with them all day.

The routine is that Christmas Eve we have the Cisco Kid open all of his Christmas stocking gifts.  My husband and I stay up very late and wrap all the gifts that evening.  Of course I spend a lot of time setting the gifts up under the tree.  I like that big WOW moment on Christmas morning when The Cisco Kid gets his first look at the gifts and I can capture that photo moment.   

It is always a pleasure to have my Mother in-law and Father in-law come in town to spend the holiday with us.  This year we had a special treat when my brother and my two nephew's joined us for the day.  It was great to watch the three boys get along so well.  My 16 year old nephew was so kind to play with The Cisco Kid who is only 10 years old.  Their playtime was all about the Nerf Guns & riding the Dune Buggy.  A typical boy thing.

First things First
Every year I make about 700 cookies and mail them out to relatives and friends.  This year is not any different.  I spent three day baking up a storm. 

Christmas Eve. 
Christmas Morning!

 We can't leave our Cat out.  This is the first Christmas we celebrated with our furry family member. 
The Cisco Kid asked for a new bike for Christmas.  We had no intentions of getting him a new bike because I knew he would be totally floored to get a Dune Buggy instead.  We gave The Cisco Kid a gift that had three hints of what his present was.  I took advantage of him thinking he was going to get a bike by wording the hints in that direction.  The first hint was.....Since he has gotten so big, this present is too large to fit under the tree. The second hint was....The present has tires.  He immediately said, Its A Bike!   The Third hint was the remote control to the garage and the clue card said..... You can ride this and you have to be very responsible.  Take the remote control and open the garage door too see what is waiting for you. WAIT FOR US!!!!!!    
The Cisco Kid loves Twinkies.  So of course Hostess makes a Twinkie maker.  We had to try and make some.   
 They tasted good but the cake was on the heavy side and the cream was not as fluffy.  The amount of sugar in these thing was crazy. But of course, he totally loved them.

We had so much fun Christmas day.  Thank you My Brother for coming over. 

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. 

Monday, December 16, 2013

Merry Christmas!!

It was hard getting our Christmas card out this year and I was starting to get panicked.  Since there was only three weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas it made it very hard to get everything together. 

Because there was only three weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas, I put up the Christmas trees just before Thanksgiving.  It was a little strange for me since all the fall decoration and Christmas decorations were up together. Right after Thanksgiving I jumped into shopping mode.  Thank goodness the Chief did all the toy shaping because I went into Dune Buggy Shopping mode. I still had 1,000.00 cookies to make. YES!!! 1,000.00 cookies. It is not a typo.    

 I am Room Coordinator and Key Communicator for The Cisco Kids Class this year.  The Key Communicator takes care of relaying all the information from the PTA and Teacher to the class parents.  The Room Coordinator takes care of all the parties, any charity drives and coordinating Teachers gifts.  Then I still have all the things I do for Cub Scouts.  I am still the Den Leader, Event Coordinator and Camp Master. 

As a Den Leader I must make sure my Den is prepared for the Boy Scouts.  My den still has to do the Handyman award, Cyber Chip award Nova Award, Supernova award and the Swing award.  These must be done before February 27th.  On March 1st they will be crossing over to the Boy Scouts. 

We campout one weekend a month and I schedule the campsite.  We usually have between 60 to 85 people campout.  I have to make sure there is enough food and drink for everyone.  So not only do I shop for all the food but I cook and prepare for two breakfasts, a dinner and Smores for two evening around the campfire.    

As for the Event Coordinating,  I coordinate the beginning of the year party, the Christmas party, Pinewood Derby as well as the Blue and Gold Banquet.  I reserved the National Guard Armory for the Blue & Gold Banquet. I am in the process of making the Cub Scout Year Book, I have to get the food catered,  get decorations, coordinate the photographer and design and print tickets.

Now you can see why I was starting to get panicked.  I did a quick picture of The Cisco Kid with his cat under the Christmas tree and sent it off to Walgreens.  I had them in one hour and mailed them off right away.  Glad to get that checked off my list. 

Friday, November 29, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Stuffed Mushrooms

Delicious Stuffed Mushrooms
15 large mushrooms caps with stems removed
 1 pound of lean ground beef
2 tablespoons of Mrs. Dash tomato basil spice
1/8 cup of pine nuts
5 cooked slices of bacon crumbled.
3 tablespoons of Sun Dried Tomato Pesto
black pepper to taste
salt to taste
1/2 cup of milk
3 slices of white bread.
Blend the bread & milk together, then add all other ingredients and mix well. 
Take the mushroom caps and fill with mixture.
Bake for 40 minutes at 350 degrees. 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Baked Zeti

This is a quick and easy meal. 

1-16 oz. box of Ziti macaroni, cooked in boiling water to desired tenderness.
6 cups of your favorite tomato sauce.  I use my home made sauce. (See recipe)
1 pound of lean ground beef
8 mushrooms diced and sautéed
1/2 large onion diced and sautéed
2 cloves of garlic diced
8 oz. mozzarella sliced
2 tablespoons Mrs. Dash, Sundried tomato basil spice

After everything is sautéed, line it up and layer it in a baking dish. 
start with some tomato sauce on the bottom, then some noodles, sprinkle the onions & mushrooms, layer the beef on top of that, ten put about 5 or 6 slices of cheese on the meet.  Start the layers all over again until you get to the top of your baking dish.  for the final touch add some cheese to the top and Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees.

 Layering your ingredients!

Antapasta Salad

I only make this salad a couple of times a year and Thanksgiving is one of those times. 

It's so delicious and can be a total meal all by itself.  No more words are needed to describe this salad, just look at the pictures.

Antapasta Salad
1/2 cup of olive oil
5 leaves of fresh basil cut into strips
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
2 tablespoons of Mrs. Dash Tomato Basis spice.
1/2 onion, diced
2 stalks of celery, diced
1 small jar of mushrooms cut in half
6 large green olives sliced in half
10 large black olives sliced in half
3/4 cup of roasted red peppers, diced
8 artichokes cut in half
2x3 inch cube of mozzarella cheese cut into smaller cubes
2x3 inch cube of Feta cheese cut into smaller cubes
2x3 inch cube of Monterey jack cheese cut into smaller cubes
2 ham slices 1/4 inch thick, diced
8 thick slices of peperoni cut into fourths
8 thick slices of salami cut into fourths
2 cloves of garlic diced

Put the olive oil, Mrs. Dash spice salt and pepper in a bowl and mix.  In a separate large bowl, add all other ingredients, and mix in the dressing. 


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