Thursday, November 24, 2011

But A Thankful Heart Hath A Continual Feast...

The turkey's in the oven, Victoria is preparing chili lime sweet potatoes and the rolls and green beans are on the way.  We'll be topping it all off with our traditional pumpkin chocolate swirl cheesecake and pumpkin pie with fresh whipped cream.
I'll be taking a break til next week some time to get my Christmas plans in order.
I wish you all a warm, bright Thanksgiving with family and friends and time to reflect on the blessings around you:>)
Thanksgiving Day is a jewel, to set in the hearts of honest men; but be careful that you do not take the day, and leave out the gratitude. ~E.P. Powell

It is literally true, as the thankless say, that they have nothing to be thankful for. He who sits by the fire, thankless for the fire, is just as if he had no fire. Nothing is possessed save in appreciation, of which thankfulness is the indispensable ingredient. But a thankful heart hath a continual feast. ~W.J. Cameron

Monday, November 21, 2011

Pumpkin Coffeecake

Good morning! We are in the home stretch. Thanksgiving with all it's baking, family fun and  warmth is almost here. Are you counting the days and planning the meal with anticipation? I know we are! I just saw one of the nieces facebook status was "4 nights until cheesecake day". Not turkey day, cheesecake day. Earl has made pumpkin chocolate swirl cheesecake for quite a few years now and I am afraid it outshines even Mr. Turkey on the big day:>)  The recipe for the cheesecake can be found on my favorite recipes page, just under my header. 

Today I wanted to share a pumpkin coffeecake that is just perfect for Thanksgiving breakfast. Moist and delicious with a streusel topping and drizzled with browned butter glaze.  Make it the night before and you won't have to add breakfast prep to your big day.
You can find the recipe here. Don't you just love the Internet for finding great recipes?
I'm off to work now but I'm looking forward to checking in on everyones posts this week and seeing how you are preparing and decorating and anticipating:>)\

And one more thought....
What are you thankful for this week?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Veggie Lasagna

This mornings bright sunshine, coupled with a day off from work, made me want to be in the sunniest part of the house this morning. That would be the kitchen:>)  I whipped up some bread and decided that while it rose I would warm up the kitchen with my favorite lasagna.  I got this recipe from a friend years ago and I just hardly ever make lasagna with meat anymore. I have served this to many people and never failed to get rave reviews!
I love to cook and bake from scratch, I think it's healthier, but it's also messier.  So when I have potatoes or carrots to peel, I lay down a layer of newspaper so I can roll it all up and toss it when I am finished. It really keeps the mess off the counter!

Veggie Lasagna

32 oz jar of pasta sauce
2 eggs
1 lb. cottage cheese (or ricotta if you prefer)
1/2 lb lasagna noodles (uncooked)
2 cups mozzarella cheese
1/2 tsp. salt
10-12 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 cup thinly sliced,or chopped, parboiled carrots

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, spray a 9x13 glass pan with cooking spray and add enough of the pasta sauce to spread a thin layer on the bottom of the baking dish.

Parboil the carrots, I microwave the sliced carrots with a little water for about 5 minutes, then drain them.

In a bowl stir together the cottage cheese, eggs, salt, spinach, and the rest of the pasta sauce.

In the pan arrange a layer of uncooked lasagna noodles in the bottom of the pan, add half the cheese mixture and 1 cup of mozzarella.  Add another layer of noodles, filling and cheese, cover with tin foil sprayed with oil so it doesn't stick to the cheese, and bake for 50 minutes covered. Remove foil, and bake an additional 10 minutes to brown the cheese. Yum! The lasagna noodles come out nicely al dente without the fuss of precooking.
Nice warm vegetarian lasagna takes the chill off these blustery, cool November days:>) Enjoy!

Monday, November 14, 2011

This and That

Between my full time job and wanting to fall asleep every night at 6 pm,( because it's DARK for Pete's sake!) I don't have a lot to write about lately. Anyone else lose their energy with the shorter days? Note to self, must try to stay awake past 9 p.m.
I wanted to show you this, I still have roses blooming. I'm sure that's not a big deal for my friends in the south, but mid November in Michigan? It's fairly unusual.  I cut this iceberg rose a couple days ago just to be on the safe side and I have another bud getting ready to bloom outside. I love this rose because it is one of the first to bloom in the cool springtime and it clearly can stand a mild frost or two.
 Last week after work, Earl and I had an impromptu date. Out for pizza and a stroll through Pottery Barn and William Sonoma just to get out of the house. I love looking at stores, even when I don't buy. PB was full of Thanksgiving goodies and Christmas decor at the same time.  The two best holidays both at the same time? How can you not love that?
 I loved the mix of clear and mercury glass candle holders, and how easy would it be to wrap some inexpensive white candles with old sheet music?
 I also spotted this cute burlap lampshade. I'll be honest, I am not usually a big fan of burlap in the home, it has an unpleasant odor and it tends to shed. But as a lampshade? It was beautiful. The light shone through the burlap in the most appealing way and I am pretty sure I have some old lace or doilies that I could sew in the center like this for a sweet knock off.
I am pretty lucky that I have a husband who enjoys pizza and shopping as date time. After 31 years together we still date regularly and I think it keeps us close.  But after 31 years I'm looking for some new ideas for dates! They have to be cheap and we aren't into sports.  Truthfully we are both homebodies at heart.
 So do us a favor, tell us, what is your favorite cheap date?

Saturday, November 5, 2011


Yesterday was my day off. It was a perfect fall day, full of sunshine and cool temps. I just wanted to show you one of my Works In Progress. I have been working on this quilt for the past few months. All of my quilting is a stop and go process. I make the squares, get busy with something else, forget about the quilt for a while, do a little can take what seems like forever to get one done. Some quilters can whip one of these out in a few days. I can't seem to work that fast.
I think I'm in the home stretch for this quilt top. Once I start putting the squares together it lights a fire under me and I pick away at it a little bit faster. I plan on hand quilting this over the winter while I watch t.v. We'll see how it goes.
How about you, any works in progress that you plan on picking away at over the coming winter months?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Best Apple Cake

 Isn't that just the truth? *sigh*
Of course I'm always willing to share the joy. I found this apple cake recipe on Pinterest and with a huge harvest of apples from my mom-in-love I needed something to use them in, right?
This cake is wonderful, it made the house smell great and the brown sugar, vanilla and cream glaze on the top tastes like caramel. And just so you know, I took most of it to work and shared.
You can find the recipe here.  Do a little daydreaming of your own while you have a piece:>)