Thursday, October 29, 2009
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Monday, October 26, 2009
The following is my top 10 list of items you can give that cost very little but will mean so much...
- Homemade Coupon Booklet - My parents love these. We include items like wash the car, fix a meal, clean house, mow the lawn, be creative and present it in a creative way.
- Scrapbook of Memories - My sister-in-law gave scrapbook calendars out a few years ago and my Mom loved it.
- Homemade Jewelery and Crafts - Now don't fall into the "I'm not a crafter trap" making jewelery and crafts is very simple. Its just like ever other adventure in your life, you have to teach yourself to become crafty. If you go to the craft store and ask they are happy to show you or you can take a class for just a few dollars. If you can tie a knot, you can create a beautiful piece of jewelery. I love the button broaches. Glue old buttons to a scrap of felt or a cut out shape, layer with your favorite buttons, glue a pen backing and your done. Easy but what a great gift, especially if you're creative with your buttons maybe use buttons from your child's dress or your Grandmothers nightgown. Again, be creative you can do it! Go here for more great button crafts from Martha Stewart. Make sure when you're creating a craft, its something YOU would want and not just junk that will end up in the trash or on the worst Christmas gift list!
- Homemade Play-dough - Recipe: 1 cup of flour, 1/4 cup of salt, 1 1/2 tsp of vegetable oil, 1/3 cup cold water, 7-10 drops, Gallon Zip Lock Bag. Mix flour, salt and oil mix well and set to the side. Next add food coloring with water. Now, add water to flour mixture and put in a gallon zip lock bag. Knead. Store in Refrigerator. You can put several colors in small containers, decorate with stickers, put in a basket with some cookie cutters, some wiggle eyes, pipe cleaners and some plastic knives and you have a great gift that any child would love! I bet they will get hours of fun out of this gift!
- Good Books - Did you know the local thrift shops sells used books and cookbooks? I find good books all the time and many of them are brand new! Just last week I purchased 12 children's hardback books for just $7.80. Four of the books sold new for $16.99 each. On 12 hardback books I I saved $139.00!!! All but 2 were brand new. When I get a book I always look to see if there are pages missing and I make sure there is no writing on the inside. This would make a great gift for anyone on your list.
- Homemade Goodies - I don't know about your parents, but my parents never really ask for anything. When I was little I would ask Dad what he wanted for Christmas and he would always say, "Oh, just a hug and a kiss." Now that I am grown he still says that but I like to give him more then that. My Mom always says she likes service gifts. Gifts to help her in daily life. A few years ago I froze and vacuum sealed three week of meals and gave them to her for Christmas. She was thrilled to have three weeks of meals to fill her freezer. Look in you're cookbooks, I bet you have something yummy you could make that would brighten the recipients day.
- Family Cookbook - We all have those cherished recipes that will be forever gone if they don't get written down and passed from generation to generation. I know my husband would give his right arm (well, maybe not is right arm but definitely his left arm) to have his Grandmas Vegetable Soup recipe but it was never written down so its gone forever. A few years ago I made a Family Cookbook. I did not have a fancy cookbook program so I just typed it in Word took it to the office supply store and had them bound. For just a few dollars each everyone had a family cookbook. I gave them the cookbook in a basket with a few supplies they would need to make a particular recipe, a loaf of homemade bread (yes, I cheated and used the frozen self rising bread dough in the grocery freezer section - It was only $1 a loaf and its so good) and a jar of jelly. It cost me less then $20 per family but made a beautiful gift. I found the baskets at the thrift shop and basket filler at Dollar Tree. I still use that cookbook and need to update it again.
- Homemade Greeting Cards or Stationary - One year I made everyone a stationary kit complete with personalized address labels which I printed from my computer. I purchased a clip art disc for $5 and made each family their own personalized labels. They were so cute!
- Music CD's - A few year's ago Mark's Mom sent us 6 CD's of music she downloaded she even created a homemade label for each one. We love them and still listen to them today. Many songs were songs Mark used to sing with his Grandma and the songs from her funeral. They are really special to him.
- Jar of Memories - What a special gift this is. It takes time to create, but what a gift. Take small pieces of paper and write memories or notes to a loved on. Place in a jar and put a note on the jar like "Daily Encouragement" or "Gratitude Jar" or "Know You Are Loved" or "Thanks For The Memories". This is fun to do each year at Christmas then the next Christmas you can read them. Save them year after year and they will become more precious as time passes by.
So, do you have any gift giving ideas for Christmas? Come back next Monday for another top 10 list. I would love to hear your ideas too!
- 8oz Cream Cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup Rance Salad Dressing
- 1/2 cup Hotsauce
- 1/2 cup Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
- 1 can (12.5oz) White Can Chicken Breast in Water, drained
How To Prepare
- Heat oven to 350 dergees
- In mixing bowl stir cream cheese and ranch dressing until smooth
- Add hotsauce, cheese and chicken
- Bake 20min or until mixture is heated through, stir
- Serve with Tostitos Scoops, Celery or Ritz Crackers
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Sunday - BBQ Chicken Sandwiches, Mom L Potatoes, Corn and Salad
(Go here to check out the way I cooked this meal - so quick and soooo easy)
Monday - Slow Cooker Minute Steak, Scalloped Potatoes & Mixed Vegetables
Tuesday - Chicken Noodle Soup & Grilled Cheese
Wednesday - Baked Spaghetti, Garlic Bread, Green Beans & Salad
Thursday - Red Beans & Rice with Corn Bread
Friday - Tacos
Saturday - Party Food and Family Over (menu to follow)
Go here to see more great menus at Menu Planning Monday with .
Then added the 1/2 bottle BBQ Sauce, 1/4 cup Grape Jelly and Seasoned Salt
I pulled the bag out of the bowl, mixed it together by squeezing the bag (gently) and set it to the side.
Then added one more bag to the bowl, filled it with frozen corn, a few pads of butter and a little sea salt. Removed it from the bowl, gave it a little mixing and set it to the side.
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
This evening I was listening to a woman speak and she talked about how God chose to take her 17 year old son home to be with the Lord just two months ago. She talked about how just three days prior to him going home with the Lord she called and left him a message on his phone telling him how much she loved him and how he was such a blessing to their family. It brought tears to my eyes as I thought back to the young man I saw earlier in the week and wondered if anyone told that young man he was loved, if anyone put their arms around him and told him how proud they are of him. Then I began thinking about myself and wondered how many times this week I got angry or fussed for really no reason. How many time did I tear down and not build up. Have I been an encouragement to my children this week? Have I been a encouragement to my husband this week? The verses that we teach our children have been going through my mind…
And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.
Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.
This is the day which the LORD hath made; we (I, Rachel) will rejoice and be glad in it.
Go here to print another $10 off any Yankee Candle product purchase of $25 of more! Just a hint on a good deal....keep an eye on Cracker Barrel's clearance section. Last time while on a trip I found a set of summer candles for pennies! They were $25.99 marked down to $9.99 used my coupon and just had to pay the tax! That was a good deal.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
Sunday - Sloppy Joes, Baked Beans & Veggies with Dip
Monday - Left-Overs
Tuesday - Eggs, Bacon, Biscuit & Gravy
Wednesday - BBQ Chicken, Apple Glazed Sweet Potatoes & Green Beans
Thursday - Shrimp & Corn Chowder with Sun-Dried Tomatoes & Garlic Toast
Friday - Homemade Pizza (our boys are having a sleepover-this is their choice)
Saturday - Chicken Lo Mein & Eggs Rolls
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Having two boys who like the Disney movies and who are just getting into Monopoly I was excited to find them this Pixar Edition on clearance here from $34.99 to just $14.99! They will be excited to get this for Christmas and I'm sure it will bring some good family memories!
Friday, October 16, 2009
I could eat Mexican food everyday, okay maybe not everyday but at least every evening! This recipe came from a cookbook we received when we were married. It was from our church Cook Baptist Church in Ruston, Louisiana. Its one of those recipes that I have changed several times but this is the final recipe that my family loves. When I make it, I always make a double batch. I make one to eat and one to freeze for a later date. Its also a great recipe to make in mini loaf pans. I like to do this too and give a few to my Mom and an elderly couple in our neighborhood. I hope you enjoy it too!
1 pkg Flour or Corn Tortillas (taco size)
2lb Ground Beef (cooked and drained)
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Chili Powder
1/2 cup Water
2 pkg Taco Seasoning Mix
3/4 cup White Onion (chopped)
1 can Ro-Tel Tomatoes
1 can Pinto Beans (undrained)
1 can Black Beans (undrained)2cups of Cheddar Cheese
Note: In this photo I made it in the slow cooker. Just add your slow cooker liner then layer in cooker like you would in baking dish. Top with cheese and slow cook until ready to serve.
Serve on a bed of fresh lettuce, topped with sour cream, salsa, chopped onion and fresh tomatoes. I like to serve with tortilla chips, salsa and a slice of avocado.