Good Morning from somewhere between Cleveland, Ohio and Wilmington, NC!

It sure seems we are making up for the time we lost for the entire 2020…all in the span of 2 months! We are on our way home from a delightful wedding weekend! Our hearts are full knowing that two really good people found each other and are embarking on a wonderful life together. I learned that my husband is a really good toast giver! In fact, I’m open to hiring him out if someone you know needs a fantastic wedding toast.

We really enjoyed the time we spent in Cleveland this past few days, although Terry would never take me to The Christmas Story museum! Just joking…I think he would’ve taken me, but we just didn’t have time. I really feel the need to see the original leg lamp!

I am feverishly writing lists of what still needs to be purchased and what still needs to be made for our Thanksgiving celebration in 3 days. I’ll be busy, but I’m confident I’ll get it all done. Terry knows he’s being enlisted for errand running, potato peeling, and whatever needs to be done.

  • We are fully into soup season, which makes this new recipe very timely. Not only is this 15-Bean Soup so easy to make, but I swap out ham hocks for leaner Smoked Turkey Legs and Wings for a healthier, lower fat, and lower sodium soup. It has received rave reviews from my testers… hope you enjoy it too. AND, if you do smoke a turkey over the holidays, it’s a great way to use up those leftover wings or legs.
  • Looking for an easy Christmas craft to add a festive touch to your table or to give as gifts this holiday? These Stamped Christmas napkins are an easy and economical craft that also make great gifts or additions to your Christmas table.
  • Along the same lines, make these mulling spices for you or pair a jar of the spices with a mulling ball for a great gift.
  • The linen stitch and half-linen stitch are two of my favorite knit stitch patterns. This lovely blanket, with a faux fur trim, uses the half linen stitch for a little stitch interest.
  • Favorite Holiday Baking Recipes and a Baking Plan
  • Seems I am always making this Jalapeño Cheese Appetizer! It makes quite a bit, but it is a great appetizer and snack to have on hand.
  •  I imagine that many of us will be baking more than usual over the next several weeks. Several years, I ago I purchased a silicone pastry mat to make my pies.  But since then, I use this mat whenever I am rolling anything on my counter. I still lightly flour the mat, but I find I need much less flour which helps prevent whatever you are making from getting tough through the addition of excess flour. In addition, I use one of my silpats or silicone mats on top of the dough, running my rolling pin over the mat.  Once again I very lightly flour the top of the dough but use much less flour than I would without the mats.You could roll right onto the Silpat that you will be baking your treats on and just pull off the dough that you don’t want to bake, leaving the cutouts on the mat.  Then, just pop your Silpat or silicon mat right on to your baking sheet.I also love that using my Silpat is more eco-friendly than using parchment paper once and then throwing it away. I have used my one Silpat HUNDREDS of times. My daughter loves and uses hers religiously as well. If you are interested in learning about how to be greener in the kitchen, check out these other eco-friendly products and ways to have a sustainable kitchen. Note to the wise: Don’t cut with a sharp knife on your pastry mat.
  • This is one of my all-time favorite projects! It was one of those last minute, bee in my bonnet projects that, thankfully, worked out well. By the time we chat next week, it will have been hung in my kitchen!

Well my friends…for all of you in the US, I hope your Thanksgiving is filled to the brim with good food and good friends.

I am leaving you with the benediction that the priest quoted at the end of the wedding service this weekend…it is lovely and really stuck with me.

“Life is short, and we do not have much time to gladden the hearts of those who make the journey with us. So, be swift to love, and make haste to be kind.” 

Henri Frederic Amiel

Thanks for making my day by SHARING!!


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