Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009 Christmas Gifts

I decided to document what I got for Christmas this year. I know 1 year from now I probably will not remember what I got, heck probably 6 months from now I won't remember. So now I can look back at my blog and see everything I was blessed with Christmas of 2009.

I received this beautiful damask apron from my daughter Callie. This is the first apron I've ever owned!

I got Lancôme La Laque Fever Gloss Set from my daughter Aubrie (awesome, I hate having naked lips)

She also got me a bra and panties from Victoria's Secret (of course she remembered the animal print...good girl!)
This bra, but mine is red.

My brother & sister in law got me a much needed shoulder/neck wrap. I have had whiplash twice so I often have upper shoulder & neck pain, so this is a neccessity for me to have! Thanks Joyce & Rick! (mine is green...favorite color)

Hubby got me stuff for the kitchen that I wanted.

Pizza Stone & Peel (can't wait to try it out)

Kitchen Aid Pizza Wheel (cutter)
I saw this recently on a cooking show and had to have this! It's a fat seperator.
Do you have one?
This is a chicken roaster made out of pottery. Just pour wine or beer in the resevior, place chicken over it and bake...yum! Beer chicken without the can!

Hubby & I bought a 32" Flat Screen Tv for a gift to each other for our bedroom. He just mounted it on the wall and we are loving it!
My mom got us a set of new 600 thread count sheets in white.

See the pretty detail!

Ok that's what I was blessed with Christmas 2009. What did you all get?


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

New Year's Centerpieces

Before you put away all your Christmas ornaments, take a look at what you can do to create a stunning New Year's centerpiece with ornaments. Just use what you have.

Go gather your clocks and make a timely statement!
Champagne glasses with small easy, yet so elegant!

So pretty & festive!

Hope this helps stir up some ideas for you!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

For Unto Us a Child is Born...

And his name will be called...
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Saltine Crackers in Candy??

I made the most incredibly yummy decadent candy last night using Saltine crackers. I know, sounds wierd, but oh so yummy! I just had to share the recipe with you.


1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) butter,

divided 35 to 40 soda crackers

1 cup packed dark brown sugar

1 can (14 ounces) NESTLÉ® CARNATION® Sweetened Condensed Milk

1 1/2 cups (9 ounces) NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels

3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts

PREHEAT oven to 425° F. Line 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan with heavy-duty foil. MELT 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter in medium saucepan. Pour into prepared jelly-roll pan. Arrange crackers over butter, breaking crackers to fit empty spaces. MELT remaining butter in same saucepan; add sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in sweetened condensed milk. Pour over crackers. BAKE for 10 to 12 minutes or until mixture is bubbly and slightly darkened. Remove from oven; cool for 1 minute. SPRINKLE with morsels. Let stand for 5 minutes or until morsels are shiny; spread evenly. Sprinkle with nuts; press into chocolate. Cool in pan on wire rack for 30 minutes. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes or until chocolate is set. Remove foil; cut into pieces.

Enjoy! (I know I am!)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Another Homemade Gift

Need another inexpensive gift made with love?
If so, consider making this fudge. It's not the traditional's Gumdrop Fudge!
Doesn't it look so festive?! And it only takes 20 minutes, but makes you look like you are a gourmet candy maker!

1-1/2 pounds white candy coating, coarsely chopped
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
1/8 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups chopped gumdrops
Line a 9-in. square pan with foil; set aside. In a large saucepan, heat the candy coating, milk and salt over low heat until coating is melted. Remove from the heat; stir in vanilla and gumdrops.
Spread into prepared pan. Cover and refrigerate until firm. Using foil, remove fudge from the pan; cut into 1-in. squares. Store at room temperature. Yield: about 3 pounds.

Have a Blessed Day!

Monday, December 21, 2009

An Easy Handmade Gift

I think the best gifts come from the heart and what usually comes from the heart is something homemade. My most memorable gifts I've given and recieved were not expensive by any means but so meaningful! Wouldn't it be great if we all learned that it's not about "things" it's about sharing & showing LOVE! After all it is the Greatest Commandment...Love One Another As Yourself!

So anyway...Come on in to my kitchen and see what I made to show some love to my family.

I found this amazingly easy and super yummy recipe on a blog that I follow and had to try it. This will be PERFECT on our Christmas biscuits!

Cinnamon Honey Butter

2 Sticks Softened Butter
1 Cup Powdered Sugar
1 Cup Honey
2 Teaspoons Ground Cinnamon

Using the whisk attachment in your mixer, blend all ingredients until it is smooth and has an even consistency. Occasionaly scrape down the sides of the mixer with a rubber spatula to ensure even mixing. I just put mine in empty glass jelly jars, but if you want to give this at gifts you can buy small quilted Ball jars at Wal-Mart.

Heather doubled the recipe and it made 9 small jars. She recommend doubling it because it's so tasty and everyone loves it. I agree! Had some this morning on an english muffin....yummy!
I am participating in "Make it for Monday" linky party over at Cottage Instincts, so head on over there to check out what others made.
Make it a Great Day!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

A Christmas Blessing for You!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Creative Christmas Card

This is a custom snowman rug and I thought it would make the perfect Christmas card for all of blog friends. We appreciate you all so much and wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

God Bless You!

Ron & Darlene

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Christmas Cookie Recipe Party

It's the final day for the Christmas Cookie Recipe Party since Christmas is next friday. Can you believe the big day is almost here...boy the time sure flew by!

Here is my Cookie Recipe for today...yummy!

Chocolate + Peanut Butter=heaven!

Peanut Butter Brownie Cookies
Prep time: 45 min
Cook Time: 12 min
Yield: 24 cookies
1 (19.5 oz.) package Pillsbury® Classic Traditional Fudge Brownie
1/4 cup butter, melted
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 large egg
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup of Creamy Peanut Butter
1/2 can Pillsbury® Chocolate Fudge Frosting
Preparation Directions:
1. HEAT oven to 350°F. Beat brownie mix, melted butter, cream cheese and egg in medium bowl 50 strokes with spoon until well blended (dough will be sticky).
2. DROP dough by rounded tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets to make 24 cookies; smooth edge of each to form round cookie.
3. MIX powdered sugar and peanut butter in small bowl with spoon until mixture forms a ball. With hands, roll rounded teaspoonfuls peanut butter mixture into 24 balls. Lightly press 1 ball into center of each ball of dough.
4. BAKE 10 to 14 minutes or until edges are set. Cool on cookie sheets at least 30 minutes.
5. SPREAD thin layer of frosting over peanut butter portion of each cooled cookie.

Now it's your turn to share your Christmas Cookie Recipe. Remember we are doing this ever friday until Christmas. So get to baking!

Please link back to THIS post from your "Christmas Cookie Recipe" post, so that all your readers can get in on the party too. Be sure to add your permalink (the Christmas Cookie Recipe post url) and NOT just your blog link!

Please save the picture of the "Christmas Cookie Recipe Party button" and post it in your blog post. Please link back to the this blog, Our Creative Life. This is important because it helps those who are visiting your blog, find the other yummy Christmas Cookie Recipes that have been posted!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Make a Candy Tree

My 12 yr old daughter made a candy tree last year and it came out so cute that I thought I would do a repost of it.

I think this will be a fun mother/daughter craft project for the holidays!

Here is the candy tree my daughter made last year. Looks just as good this year! I did spray it with a polyurethane to seal it and put it away after Christmas in several bags...just in case the ants smelled the sugar. This year unwrapped it from all the bags and it was still perfect! Yeah!

I think this year she is going to make another tree using round green gummy rings. I'll show you as soon as she makes it!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas Cookie Recipe Party

Good Morning!

I am so glad that you came to my Christmas Cookie Recipe Party!!

I attended the Culinary & Craft School last weekend in Branson, Mo and we made these Apricot Nuggets. They were so easy and so yummy that I just had to share. Not a cookie, but I didn't think you would mind.

Apricot Nuggets

1 box (1 lb) powdered sugar
4 tablespoons melted butter
2 tablespoons orange juice or Grand Marnier
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
11 ounces dried apricots
1 cup pecans, fine chopped
Run apricots through food processor.
Mix sugar, butter, orange juice and vanilla extract. Put sugar mixture and ground apricots in a large bowl and knead until well blended. Form into 1-inch balls. Roll in chopped pecans.
**You can also dip these in melted chocolate to make them into truffles. I did that and it was heavenly! I used the candy coating called Almond Bark.
If you missed the christmas cookie recipe party last friday, don't worry you can check it out HERE.

Now it's your turn to share your Christmas Cookie Recipe. Remember we are doing this ever friday until Christmas. So get to baking!

Please link back to THIS post from your "Christmas Cookie Recipe" post, so that all your readers can get in on the party too. Be sure to add your permalink (the Christmas Cookie Recipe post url) and NOT just your blog link!

Please save the picture of the "Christmas Cookie Recipe Party button" and post it in your blog post. Please link back to the this blog, Our Creative Life. This is important because it helps those who are visiting your blog, find the other yummy Christmas Cookie Recipes that have been posted!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Creative uses for Pinecones

I have an over abundance of pinecones in my yard, so I was searching out some creative ways to use them in my Christmas decorating. Some I found I never even thought of before. Hope you can find some creative inspiration in these photos to do with pinecones that you've never done.

You will need pinecones of varying sizes for this one.
You could do this without the jewels. Just hot glue ribbon on the wide part of the pinecone and hang from a window. Saw this done at the Culinary & Craft House in Branson.

Just one large pinecone in an urn...simple, yet elegant. Spray the pinecone silver or gold or just leave natural.
Keep the kids busy making a pinecone garland!
Love the large pinecones by the hearth!

Pinecones make great ornaments...sprayed gold or silver, dusted with snow or left natural!
How about a pinecone placecard? Perfect for fall or winter!
Don't forget to use pinecones in your centerpieces.
This is the one idea I have not thought of and definitly will do! I have the perfect spot for it!
Branches of pincones to use on top a hutch or sideboard or anywhere for that matter!
Ah, don't forget to jazz up your gift wrapping with some nature!
The only place I've seen huge pinecones like this were in California. I should have gotten some when I lived there. Oh well. All you Californians can do this!

Ok, hope that inspired you all! I'm off to gather my pinecones now!

Don't forget to get your blog posts ready for tomorrow's "Christmas Cookie Recipe Party!"

See you soon!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Christmas In The Ozarks

The family and I just got back from a weekend getaway to Branson, Missouri. Branson is a beautiful place to go for Christmas. There are Christmas lights everywhere, Christmas shows everywhere and Shopping everywhere. Perfect!

The deer was even adorned with a wreath at Branson Landing (shopping)

The crowd of shoppers. Boy, was it COLD!!

Festival of Lights

The Angel Tree at the Sight & Sound Theatre

My Family

Musical Tree at Silver Dollar City

The whole park was aglow with Christmas pretty!

Culinary & Craft School (oldest daughter & I took a cooking class)
It was sooooo cold at Silver Dollar City that day, that we were happ to be indoors!

Debbie Uhrig is the instructor.

This is the kitchen at the culinary pretty!

My daughter in the culinary kitchen.

Here's Moi

This cabinet is over a window, great idea to still have storage, but not cover the sunlight!

See that backsplash?? It is woven copper and it was cool!

I will be sharing a recipe we made at the school this friday at the Christmas Cookie Recipe please come back friday!

Merry Christmas!


The Family

The Family