Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!!!

Here is a little peak of what our evening will look like...

Wishing everyone a safe, happy and wonderful New Year's Eve!
May all your dreams come true in 2011!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

2010 Year in Review

My Closet, A True Sanctuary!!!
Weekends~I live for them.
~Strawberry Bruschetta~
Kitchen Make~Over= Bliss
Roasted Caprese Salad
Peanut Butter And Jelly Bars
I loved showing you my make-up addiction
My All Time Favorite Cupcakes
Pineapple Fried Rice
My First Post
I have had the most wonderful 6 months of blogging. Seems
like, I've been doing it forever. I look forward to the upcoming
year. I have so much to share with you, all. I just want to thank
each and everyone of you who stops by and spends some time
with me. Hugs~Val

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Winter Salad

I don't know about you, but this time of year...I start to
crave salad's. My body longs for healthy greens. This salad
is anything but boring. It is one of my favorite's and if
you try will be one of your's too.

Winter Salad
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1-2 chicken breasts, cooked & diced
1 large bunch of spinach
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese-or your favorite
1 pear, diced
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 avocado, peeled, pitted and diced
2 tablespoons, red raspberry jam ( with seeds)
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/3 cups olive oil
salt and pepper

1) Preheat oven to 350* Arrange walnuts in a single layer
on a baking sheet. Toast in oven for 5 minutes.
2) In a large bowl, toss together the spinach, walnuts, pear,
chicken, cranberries, blue cheese, avocado and red onion.
3) In a small bowl, whisk together jam, vinegar, olive oil,
pepper and salt. Pour over salad just before serving and
toss to coat.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Gumdrop Fudge

Goody, goody gumdrops. How cute are these?? Not only
are they cute, but they are so good. I love gumdrops and
only eat them around the this recipe is just
perfect. Enjoy and share.

Gumdrop Fudge

1 1/2 pounds white candy coating, coarsely chopped
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups gumdrops, chopped

1) Line a 9 inch square pan with foil, set aside. In a heavy
saucepan, combine the candy coating, milk, and salt. Cook
and stir over low heat until chips are melted. Remove from
the heat, stir in vanilla and gumdrops.
2) Spread into prepared pan. Cover and refrigerate until
firm. Using foil, remove fudge from the pan. Cut into 1 inch
squares. Store at room temperature.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Taco Bites

I love to entertain and have a full house of family and
friend's. I get great pleasure out of making other's
happy! I live for it. I always put SO much pressure on
myself. The one thing I've learned over the years is to
keep some thing's simple and appetizers have to be
easy and delish.

Taco Bites

1 pound ground turkey or beef
1 onion, finely chopped
1 envelope taco seasoning
3/4 cups water
1 1/4 cups shredded Mexican cheese, divided
2 packages miniature phyllo tart shells
taco sauce or salsa
sour cream

1) In a skillet, cook meat and onion over medium heat
until meat is no longer pink, drain, Stir in taco seasoning
and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer, uncovered
for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in 1/2 cup cheese.
2) Place tart shells in a baking pan. Fill with taco mixture.
3) Bake at 350* for 6 minutes.
4) Top each shell with sour cream, taco sauce, Cheese and
chives. Enjoy!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Coconut bonbons

If there is one thing you should make for the holidays,
it should be these highly addicting and beyond yummy
bonbons. I boxed these little beauties up in decorative
boxes with bows and handed them out to friends. Try
them...your won't regret it!!

Coconut Bonbons

2 2/3 cups flaked coconut, chopped
2/3 cup confectioner's sugar
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup finely chopped almond, toasted
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon shortening
colored jimmies or coarse sugar, for sprinkling

1) In a small bowl, combine the coconut, confectioner's
sugar, milk, almonds, butter and vanilla. Cover and
refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
2) Roll into 1 inch balls, place on waxed paper-lined
pan. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
3) In a microwave safe bowl, melt chocolate chips and
shortening, stir until smooth. Dip balls in chocolate,
allow excess to drip off. Return to waxed paper-lined
pans. Sprinkle with jimmies. Chill until firm. Store in
an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Love I love this child!! She owns my heart and makes
everyday a good day. I'm truly thankful and blessed.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Festive Blondies

Baking for the holidays? If so, you must make these!!
You probably already have all the ingredients. I love
how festive they look. I just had one for breakfast with
my morning coffee. I'm thinking I might have one for
lunch too.

Festive Blondies

2 sticks unsalted butter, plus more, for pan. room temp
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1) Preheat oven to 350*. Brush an 8 inch square baking pan
with butter. Line pan with parchment paper, leaving 2 inch
overhang on two sides. Butter paper.
2) In a large bowl, whisk together butter and sugars until
smooth. Whisk in eggs and vanilla. Add flour and salt, stir
just until moistened. Transfer batter to a prepared pan and
smooth top. Arrange candies in 12 rows ( 2 rows per color)
on top of the dough.
3) Bake until top of cake is golden brown and a toothpick
inserted in center comes out clean, about 45 minutes.
Using parchment overhang, lift cake from pan and transfer
to a cutting board, cut into 16 squares.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

$50 Pottery Barn Giveaway!!!

This is my first giveaway. I just wanted to thank all the
great people who have stopped by my little blog and
showed me blog love. When I first started blogging it was
for me to have a creative outlet and for my children to
maybe one day look back at our lives and see all the things
we have done and recipes they can carry on.

The one thing I never expected was the friendship's that
would come along because of blogging. I'm grateful and
you have made my heart bigger. The Giveaway is my way
of saying, Thank you. Whether you have been with me
from the start or just today.

All you have to do to win is....You must follow my blog to enter
and just leave me a comment and let me know what your favorite
holiday food is..... A winner will be chosen one week from
today. Good luck. I know we all LOVE Pottery Barn!!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Holiday Stuffing

Holiday Stuffing aka Pineapple Stuffing. This dish is on
every holiday table we have. I love it best with a Spiral
ham. The combo is magical. Confession, sometime's I
will even eat it cold the next day for breakfast.

Holiday Stuffing
6 slices of bread
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
4 eggs
1 ( 1 lb 4 ounce) can pineapple, drained

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cube bread. Cream butter with
sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time. Stir in pineapple. Fold in
bread cubes. Place in a greased 1 1/2 quart casserole. Bake,
uncovered for 1 hour.

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