Gingerly Made: December 2010

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Taking a Break

Hello everyone,

With Christmas and New Year's right around the corner I'm sure everyone is going to be getting busier. Busier with family as kids get out of school, busier with spouses as they are taking Christmas vacation time, cooking, wrapping presents, finishing buying Christmas presents, and with family coming in town or traveling to see those out-of-town family members. At least, I sure am.

We actually have our first visitor coming in this week. And hubby had enough vacation time to combine with his work holidays to take two straight weeks off! Whoo hoo! So, I am going to take a little break from blog land. I feel like it would be better for me to take a break than post sporadically during this time.

So I wish everyone of you a very Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and I'll be back in January with some great new posts for you!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Friday, December 10, 2010

From-Scratch Dressing Recipe

If you have been keeping up with the recipes I've posted, you may have noticed, I love Food Network! Well, just before Thanksgiving, I found another great recipe. This time it was for dressing or stuffing, whatever you call it. That yummy bread dish that we all love.

For our normal during the week meals, I used to just open a box of Stove Top. Not any more!!! The Country Bread and Sage Dressing is infinitely better tasting. Although it does take more time and little planning because I have to make an extra loaf of bread, it's so worth it. I just wish I had taken a picture at Thanksgiving when I made it.

I'm not going to attempt to put the recipe down here. It's just easier if you click on the link above and follow Bobby Flay's directions. He's a much better coach and chef than I am.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Advice Needed - Kitchen Grease Disposal

I have been wondering for a while if there is a better way to dispose of my kitchen grease and oils. You know, the grease from browning up some hamburger meat or bacon, or left over oil after you make french fries, etc. I usually put it in a glass jar and then throw it away. But there has to be something better to do with it. I know not to put it down the drain.

That jar could be recycled. And since I have been making more food from scratch, I have less glass jars to toss. Usually the jars came from store bought spaghetti sauce jars, but it has been months since I've bought any. And that's a good thing. I just don't know what to do with these kitchen leftovers now.

So, please tell me what you do with that grease and oil. Is there something productive you can do with it?? Or if not, how do you dispose of it?

Thanks!!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Free Projects for Kids at Home Depot

I'm not being compensated in any way for this post. I just wanted to tell you about it because as a mom, I'm always looking for something fun for Caitlin to do.

Eric is making a Christmas present for me. I am SO excited. He is building custom shelving for the laundry room. Anyway, we had to make a trip to Home Depot on Saturday so he could get some more supplies. And as we were standing in the check out lane, we saw several kids go by wearing orange home depot aprons and carrying cute handmade picture frames. And we realized they were having a Kid's Workshop.

Home Depot's Kids Workshops are so cute. They have them on the first Saturday of every month and best of all, they are free! Whoo hoo! I'm all about some free fun for kids! Although the projects are geared for kids ages 5 - 12, with some help, Caitlin could do this one.

It was a picture frame with cute stickers to put on the edges. We actually took the project home with us and put the frame together while Caitlin was playing. Then we let her put the stickers on where she wanted them. Isn't she so cute in her little work apron??

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

My Little Helper

Having a toddler means having a little copy cat. They watch and imitate everything mommy and daddy do. And our little girl is no exception. She loves to help mommy do whatever it is I am doing. Sometimes that's really hard for me because it's something she can't help me with like cutting up vegetables or sew or knit. But most of the time, if I just slow down, Caitlin can help me with a lot of things around the house.

She puts paper in the trash and wipes up messes with a washcloth, and she tries to sweep the floor, but her favorite thing to do is help me cook. She especially loves making bread or cookies. It's so cute to hear her say "I pat, I pat". So I let her pat the dough into a ball.

Here's some pictures of Caitlin helping me make pizza.

I let her pour the flour into the mixer,

pat the dough after it was finished kneading,

roll it out onto the pan,

and she even 'helped' me put the pepperonis on by squishing them down into the dough, sauce, and cheese.

I'm having so much fun with my little helper!!!

Monday, December 6, 2010

SNOW!

Saturday we had our first snow. And living in the middle of North Carolina, that's pretty unusual. We don't normally get any snow until February, and it's rarely more than an inch or two. So, when we do get snow, it's time to play! Even though we only got enough to lightly dust the ground.

We took Caitlin out in in and she loved it! She kept holding out her hands to catch the snow. So cute! Unlike me, she is pretty warm bodied and didn't mind the cold outside. Of course, I had her bundled up pretty well too.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Combatting the Call of Consumerism


This Christmas season I am realizing how strongly consumerism affects me. I have all of my Christmas shopping done now, but with almost a month left before Christmas, I still feel compelled to purchase something for someone. Being a frugally minded person, I usually try to buy things when they are on sale. But this is the time of year when everything is on sale, so I feel like I ought to get it now since I can get a deal on it; even if I don't really need it.

It may seem silly, but I find it really hard to contain myself. Not just this year, but every year. I guess part of it is the fact that shopping and collecting things, whether for yourself or someone else, is fun. I don't know of anyone who really hates shopping. You may not like to shop for clothes, but you do like to shop for kitchen gadgets, or something else that peaks your interest. And I think that's why so many people go into debt and spend half the year trying to pay off what they spent during Christmas.

I have a budget and that helps me to control those impulses to buy, buy, buy. I already wrote a post on how I use a Christmas budget spreadsheet. Now, I just have to fight the desire to buy something when I see some commercial or ad. Does the urge to shop til you drop ever go away?? I hate feeling torn between gratification and sensibility. Thankfully, sense is winning out.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

2010 Top Green Living Blog Award

I am honored to be picked as on of Massage Therapy's Schools 2010 Top Green Living Blogs! Massage Therapy Schools says:

As a website dedicated to help those consider a career in massage therapy, we only provide the best information available. Whether it's a resource that helps provide suggestions to maintain a diet, or fitness ideas to keep your body healthy, we provide them for those seeking to obtain this information. This is why we've featured your blog, as it is one of the best to teach our readers.

Thanks you for this unique honor!


 
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