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Friday, December 23, 2011

The rush of the holiday

So I started the day with the lofty goal of cleaning my entire house, prepping all Christmas day food, doing all the laundry and also finding time to start my jewelry contest project. 

So far, I'm pretty happy with what I've accomplished . . .  I started my day with a 9am hot rock massage.  Then went to the grocery story for the 90th time this week (feels like it anyway).  Took the older kid to the doctor for what appeared to be an ear infection (wasn't, thank goodness) and got an ice pack for the younger kid who managed to take a header into the corner. .. her shiner is looking much better now.  The 2nd load is in the washer and the house is still a wreck.  I think I'll treat myself to a dirty floor for Christmas.  The dogs will just be tracking mud in anyway, as we still have no snow in my part of Michigan!

So far I've manged to prep the spinach artichoke dip, the cold spinach dip (the one you serve with pumpernickel bread), a cheeseball, some cream cheese & salsa dip, my nearly world-famous bean dip, some salmon spread and the crab rangoon filling.  And I managed to squeeze in dinner of a bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin and some homemade cheese scalloped potatoes.  All that really remains for Sunday is the cocktail sauce (which I ever buy, I'm a girl of Polish heritage, we Pols need our fresh horseradish . . that store-bought stuff is never horseradishy enough for me!)

Spinach Artichoke Dip:
1 block cream cheese (fat free is just fine if you're diet conscious)
handful of shredded mozarella
1/2 C fresh grated pamesean
handful of fresh spinach, roughly chopped
1 can artichokes, drained & chopped
generous scoop of sour cream (fat free is just fine)
garlic powder until is smells garlicy enough for you (somewhere between 1/2 t and 1 T or 4-6 fresh cloves, mashed to a paste)

Place all ingredients in an oven-proof casserole dish.  Bake at 350 for 30-45 minutes, until slightly browned and bubbly.

Bean Dip:
1 can refried beans
1 can black beans
1 jar salsa (any variety)
1 T each: cumin, cilantro, onion powder, garlic powder

Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth.  Heat in an oven-proof casserole dish at 350 for 30-45 minutes, or in a crock pot or on the stove top or in a microwave until heated through.

Mixture also freezes wonderfully.  I often make a double batch and then freeze half for a rainy day.  Can be mixed with taco meat or cooked chicken for burritos or enchiladas.  Also makes a great nacho topping.

These are the only recipes I can think of off the top of my head.  If anyone is interested, I will look the others up and post them as well. 

I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas, if that's what you celebrate - otherwise, have a good weekend.  We have been jokingly having a Festivus Celebration today - in preparation for the Christmas get together. 

Friday, December 2, 2011

Let's get this started . . . . .

So I joined a jewelry contest.  Part of the rules were to share our construction photos and ideas for our piece by putting stuff on our blogs.  So now I have a blog. 

I'll admit, I read a few blogs. . . but never really had the desire to start one of my own.  I'm funnier in person than on paper . . . so who would want to read that? 

I'm an amazing cook, but rarely write the stuff down (I'm one of those annoying people who measures by handfuls and pinches and how it smells or looks). 

I do a lot of crafty things - mostly jewelry, but I also work on other odd projects.  Metal forming, glass fusing, some beadwork, etc.  I am attempting my first "real" sewing project this Christmas season - so that could very well turn up on here. 

So welcome to my world.  I'm hoping this will be more of a crafting and cooking thing . . . but who knows what this will end up being! 

Have a great weekend!