Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Oops...here is the rest

Sorry, I forgot to include the directions for packing the jar if you gift the jar! : /

Combine flour, baking soda and salt in medium bowl; stir well. Pour 1/2 cup flour mixture into 1 quart wide mouth jar with a tight fitting lid; pack down well. Add 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup flour mixture, cocoa, remaining flour mixture and remaining brown sugar to jar; pack down well after each layer. Add candies, nuts and raisins; pack down lightly after each layer. Seal jar.

Cover top of jar with fabric. Attach a gift tag to jar with ribbon. :) All done!

Down Home Cooking

You know you are doing some down home cooking when your recipe calls for two soup cans of water! It is literally my favorite about making one of my hubby's favorite dinners- chicken and rice. The worst part about it is the waiting period until the delicious dinner is ready!

Anyhow, today is electronic greetings day so I thought I would make sure to give a hearty hello and good day to all my blog friends out there. I hope your days have calmed down a little after Thanksgiving and you are getting a chance to sit back and relax a little before you get too involved in the Christmas bonanza! Don't get me wrong- I love the Christmas season. I love decorating the house, putting up the tree, making Christmas goodies and such. But more than all of that I love a chance to get together with people I love and care about.

With that being said I am going to try to include a holiday gift idea with each post this Christmas season. I am going to aim for something simple that could be given to just about anybody. So gift idea for today is going to be:
Chocolate Christmas Cookie Mix
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 cup red and green m&ms
1/2 cup salted peanuts (optional)
1/2 cup raisins (optional)

Now from here you can do one of two things, you can bake the cookies and present them to your loved one that way or you can gift the necessary ingredients in a jar and include the recipe for them to make whenever they are in the mood. I will let you in on the directions for both! :)

Other ingredients you will need to either bake or the person receiving will need to have:
2/3 cup butter, softened
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Beat butter in large bowl until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla until blended. (Mixture may appear curdled) Add contents of jar(or other dry ingredients if you are making them yourself); stir until well blended.
Drop dough by heaping tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 11 to 12 minutes or until almost set. Cool 2 minutes on cookie sheets; transfer to wire racks to cool completely.


Monday, November 28, 2011

Argh Mateys!!!

Happy birthday to my favorite four year old pirate Jack Garrett!! I miss you my sweet nephew and wish I could be there with you today!! Happy birthday to my big boy nephew and hope the rest of your birthday is just as amazing as you are! I love you sweet boy, aunt emmy misses you and so does Cash!!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

MMMMmmmm melting in your mouth

Saturday morning we made these bad boys!! They were absolutely delicious and DANGEROUSLY easy to make. You take canned biscuits and cut the hole out of the middle and deep fry it in vegetable oil. Then dip it in melted butter and coat in cinnamon sugar or other coating of your choice. We were in heaven and we will definitely be making these again!! If I keep introducing things like this to my hubby I think he will fall in love with pinterest the way I have...hey a girl can dream. At least he doesn't mind that I spend so much time on it anymore, with all the projects I have done and all the foods I have made so far! I will try to put up a Thanksgiving synopsis soon but just wanted you to know that you should try these if you are not afraid to get addicted! ;) YUMMMMMM!!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Hunker Down Hairy Dawg

I saw this picture posted on a friends wall on facebook and immediately wished I could have been there to see it in person. What a wonderful way to celebrate the life of Larry Munson, the voice of the dawgs. Larry Munson was an icon to the bulldawg nation and it just goes to show you how much he was cared for. I am incredibly thankful the red coat band took the time to learn this and perform it on our last regular season game. Thank you Larry Munson for being a bulldawg through and through and leading us through many seasons- good and bad. Run Munson Run!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Go for a Ride

Today is "Go for a Ride" day. Obviously, this holiday was thought of when gas prices were not quite so ridiculous. Still, I have to admit one of my favorite things about going somewhere with my honey is the drive.

Living in Germany does benefit you on those drives with beautiful scenery. My favorite scenery is all the little villages that in little valleys surrounded by farm land. There is something so quaint and refreshing to see that people here still live that way and makes you remember that life is simple, we are the ones who make it complex.

Another favorite part about taking those drives is being by the side of my hubby. We love to joke and tease each other when in the car about who is right more than the other about the times we have gotten lost since being here in Germany, which has unfortunately been one time too many! ;) However, riding in the car with my husband also gives us time to hold hands and talk and it takes me back to the days when we were dating and our riding time was our quizzing time where we would ask each other questions and just talk about how our days were. We don't take drives here in Germany very often because we don't need to drive very far for most things and we often take the short drive alone. I will be grateful when we are back home and more drives include both of us.

So take a short or long ride today and savor the scenery and the conversation. If you ride alone, take the time to have a conversation with God instead. Enjoy your ride!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Getting Ready for Emma

My sweet friend who I have grown very close to over the past few months since getting back from home and being sick just had her baby girl, Emma. Before Emma made her grand entrance we had a chance to snap a few pictures for mom, dad, and Isaiah to cherish and remember how excited they were. Here are just a few of the ones we took. Forewarning: I do not claim to be a photographer by any means- I just like taking pictures so that is what these are!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Beautiful Day

I do not find it a coincidence at all that My sister-in-law's birthday falls on "Beautiful Day." While I will not be able to celebrate her 30th birthday with her I know she has many friends and family there to help make this day super special for her, not to mention my amazing brother who I know will treat her like a princess like he always does! I mean if Molly(the pup) gets her own cake and party then Lisa deserves one too right?!?! Lisa, thank you for making my big brother so happy and turning him into a big puddle of mush! haha I miss you both Happy Beautiful Birthday Lisa!!

On the project front I recently told you I was working on something involving a canvas, paints and a ribbon. Well the ribbon got wrecked in the process of trying to use it for a photo so I had to resort to simple yarn but I think it all worked out in the end. What do you think of my most recent project- our Christmas door decoration for this season!

This was yet another idea inspired by Pinterest. I am telling you that place has got to be one of the coolest things ever created. I had a lot of fun painting my canvas. I love the Christmas season and we have started early here at our house. Our Christmas tree has been up for almost two weeks now. My hubby started ordering Christmas presents online a few weeks ago that he said I could not open. I told him if he was going to do that, I got to put up the Christmas tree when the packages started arriving. He was forced to keep up that deal and we now have a lit Christmas tree next to me with about 5 wrapped boxes underneath it!

I had some extra time on my hands tonight before posting this and decided to go ahead and make this project I have been meaning to make for a while. We always seem to end up with papers and mail lying around on our kitchen counters so when I saw this very simple and cute way to keep that from happening I certainly had to jump at it! I saved the first cereal box we had after that. In fact I think I made it a point to buy some cereal the next time I went to the store so that I would have a box for it! This particular box used to be fruit loops. I took some scrapbook paper from a pack my mom sent and from a pack my sweet sis sent and covered the box and cut out the letter to spell out paper on the front. I do not have the proper heavy duty magnet clips to safely secure it yet so it won't hold anything for now but it sure did come out great.

Yesterday Jonathan and I went down to Ramstein to pick up a few things we needed. We had some friends who also needed to go so we all made a day of it. We stopped in a Mexican Cantina in Kaiserslautern for lunch which was quite yummy but I admit made me miss Mexicale Grille. Once we made it to the px in Ramstein we shopped around for random odds and ends we needed that our px does not carry. I snatched up a couple Christmas presents for the boys, my nephews. Then snatched up some string so I get started using my sewing machine I recently purchased. I am so excited to get started on so many projects I have in mind from pillowcases to quilts. Jonathan also did some wandering around and happened upon a very nice desktop. We have been discussing how the next kind of computer we would purchase would be a desktop computer since we have a couple laptops already. Although we have a couple laptops his is the only one that works fairly fast and such. So we bought ourselves an early Christmas present and got a new desktop. So we are very excited about that.

Well that is about all for now, I must go finish cleaning and getting ready for all our guest we will have in the next week. Our dear and sweet friends, the Greens, will be arriving Wednesday night to spend Thanksgiving with us and will be staying here until the weekend when we will have our other sweet friends baby shower to celebrate her baby girl that is due the first of January. It will such a fun and exciting week indeed!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Pat on the back!

Ok, so I am on a roll here recently. Next update, Christina's baby shower! The Sunday after we got back from the sea of rocks we had a baby shower for our sweet friend Christina! I have not finished editing the pictures from the shower much to her dismay but here is one I am giving myself a pat on the back for- her cake that I made. It was so much fun and turned out really great! I will also show you how I made the cake in case you ever have the need to make a butterfly cake for any reason!

Start with two round cakes

Cut each cake into a peace sign and then turn the top two

Repeat with second cake and stack, add mini cupcakes for body


Add butterfly cupcakes to the side and ta-dah!

Sea of Rocks

Ok so I have filled in on all the fun fall festivities. Well, the following weekend- the first weekend in November (yes that is how far I am behind!), we had a chance to go on a short overnight trip to the Sea of Rocks here in Germany. It was such a neat trip. We drove up Friday afternoon, it was a easy and short drive for the most part which was encouraging so hopefully we will have a place to take family when they visit. Friday evening we got settled in our quaint hotel room. In case you were wondering quaint is one of those words you use to politely say the place was pretty small, not to mention we had "German" style beds.**INSERT RANT ON GERMAN BEDS HERE: Germans must not like to cuddle up at night time because the biggest size mattress you will find here is a full size mattress which is pretty much considered a single bed. So as a result if you want a bigger bed their solution is to put two twin mattresses together. This may not be such a terrible solution if the frame for the bed was bigger, but nope- they just push two twin frames together...uncomfortable couple party of two!RANT ENDS HERE**
Our separate beds!

After settling into our quaint room we all met up for dinner at a restaurant down the road from our hotel. The food was certainly not bad- once it finally got there. Luckily we had good company to keep us entertained and laughing while we waited for our food. I had some sort of chicken pasta and pommes (aka fries). After dinner we met up with some of our group and enjoyed a game of poker. I usually only play poker for fun but I had an itch to play this night so the hubby agreed to let me buy in as well. Low and behold we came in first and second so we basically won the money we had spent on our trip back that night. :) Go Rupard's!!

Our winnings!

The next morning we met up for breakfast and then drove to our destination, the Sea of Rocks. This is a very interesting place to go and granted I have never been at a different time of the year I think when we went was the perfect time to go! The trees were absolutely breathtaking with all their magnificent fall-like colors. I thoroughly enjoyed looking around more than anything. It is kind of hard to describe exactly what this place is like other than to say that it is basically like climbing up a lot of rocks on your way up a mountain. I know that is not the best description in the world and it sounds dumb but it is actually kind of fun- just check out the pictures!
At the beginning of the climb before getting all sweaty! :)
Pretty trees

My handsome man!

Getting closer to the top

This was about the half way point- aka where I stopped

Jon continued conquering LARGE rocks!

The beautiful scenery on the path down

After a wonderful day together!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Justice League!!

Well, as usual I am way behind in updating you in what is going on. Yesterday was an off day for me and it was spent cleaning the house and grocery store shopping for the next few weeks. However, I need to do some updating and I will start where I left out, the weekend of Halloween.

Monday night we had a company Halloween party with many festivities including a costume contest, cake walking, games for kids, pumpkin carving contest, and a haunted house. The kids had some great costumes from Mario and monkey to batman and spiderman.
Landon says, "Monkey see, monkey do!"
Let's not forget there were some creative and great adult costumes as well. Jonathan and I were a little too busy trying to finish decorating the cookies right before to think of any kind of costume idea so maybe next year! The adult costume winners were Sgt Johnson and her husband!

The spooky winners!
There were also a few carnival-type games for the kiddos that I unfortunately did not get any pictures of! Jonathan was chosen to represent his platoon, the Justice League, in the pumpkin carving contest. He did not win but he definitely should have because his pumpkin was awesome and very creative!! Check it out!!
Hard at work
Did this in less than 20 minutes!

I would love to tell you more about our party but I have to go get ready to go to the arts and crafts store with my friend Christina. We have some projects in the works that I will hopefully be able to post about soon! The project I am working on involves a canvas, ribbon, and paint...oh the suspense!!! ;)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Walk the walk, win the cake

Ok, so to update you on some of the more recent things that have been happening here recently. Last Friday the hubby and I enjoyed the final fall festival that the Mannheim community will ever see. It was not as large of a shin dig as it was last year but it was still a fun evening. I got to see a few of the kids from the class I have been working in as well as help out with our company's cake walk.

You got to see a picture of the Frankenstein cake I made for the cake walk. It went quickly as a friend of ours daughter wanted it. I hope they have had a chance to enjoy it and that it tasted as good at it looked. We had a great time walking around and enjoying what would be one of the final hurrahs of our small community. The housing office in Heidelberg has already begun to call people in our company to move to Heidelberg. We have not been called yet and we are kind of hoping that we do not get called for another little while since I am literally a three minute walking commute to work right now. I am not real sure the pay would be worth it to drive 30 minutes everyday so hopefully we will be one of the last ones called to move.

Here are a few pictures from the fall festival.
My honeybee!

Cake Walk cupcakes

Walk it out Christina!

Some girls who have kept me grounded lately: Christina and Yvonne

I promise I am still alive

Oh my goodness last weekend, this week, and this weekend have been jam packed and the craziness is not quite over so I promise tonight to have multiple post ready for you- with pictures!!