Saturday, 31 July 2010

CIJ - day 31. Last day of CIJ





Yep, it's the last day of CIJ. I'll have to take a break of Christmas planning because Halloween is coming up! Boo!




Recipe for today: Christmas tree pizza





Ingredients
1 package frozen, chopped spinach
Yellow, red, and orange bell peppers
Olive oil
Cornmeal
Pizza dough for one 12-inch round pie
1 cup tomato sauce
1/4 to 1/3 grated Romano cheese
Feta cheese (or why not bocconcini?)

Instructions
Heat oven to 450 degrees. Cook the spinach, drain, and press it to squeeze out excess liquid. Set aside.
Use tiny cookie cutters to shape circles and stars from the peppers. Set aside.
Coat a 12-inch pizza pan with olive oil, then sprinkle on the cornmeal. Roll the dough into a circle and place on the pan, pushing the edges to the rim.
Spread the tomato sauce on the dough and sprinkle on the grated Romano cheese. Top with the chopped spinach and then drizzle olive oil over the spinach. Sprinkle the crumbled feta over the spinach and arrange the pepper circles.
Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the bottom of the crust is browned. Cut the pizza into triangular slices and then trim the crust to form a trunk. Finally, top each slice with a yellow star. Makes one 12-inch pizza.




Craft of the day - Christmas napkins


Some vintage buckles and ribbons for the napkin rings. old vintage napkins and a fine-tip Sharpie and simply write a recipe (a gingerbread recipe, cookie recipe, ...) on each napkin.

Beautiful! and can be reused.



Joke of the day:

T'was the week After Christmas...
T'was the week after Christmas, and all through the house,

Every creature was hurting-- even the mouse.

The toys were all broken, their batteries dead;

Santa passed out, with some ice on his head.


Wrapping and ribbons just covered the floor,

whileUpstairs the family continued to snore.

And I in my T-shirt, new Reeboks and jeans,

Went into the kitchen and started to clean.


When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,

I sprang from the sink to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash,

Tore open the curtains, and threw up the sash.


When what to my wondering eyes should appear,

But a little white truck, with an oversized mirror.

The driver was smiling, so lively and grand;

The patch on his jacket said "U.S. POSTMAN."


With a handful of bills, he grinned like a fox

Then quickly he stuffed them into our mailbox.

Bill after bill, after bill, they still came.

Whistling and shouting he called them by name:

"Now Dillard's, now Broadway's, now Penny's and SearsHere's Levitz's and Target's and Mervyn's -- all here!!


To the tip or your limit, every store, every mall,

Now chargeaway-chargeaway-chargeaway all!"

He whooped and he whistled as he finished his work.


He filled up the box, and then turned with a jerk.

He sprang to his truck and he drove down the road,

Driving much faster with just half a load.


Then I heard him exclaim with great holiday cheer,
""Enjoy what you got ... you'll be paying all year!"


Submitted by Kenneth, Shropshire, England


Friday, 30 July 2010

CIJ day 30th





Recipe for today - this looks good! - Crescent wreath



Ingredients

2 (8 ounce) packages refrigerated crescent rolls

1 cup shredded Colby-Jack cheese

2/3 cup condensed cream of chicken soup

1/2 cup chopped fresh broccoli

1/2 cup chopped sweet red pepper

1/4 cup chopped water chestnuts

3/4 cup cubed cooked chicken

2 tablespoons chopped onion



Cooking Directions

Arrange crescent rolls on a 12-in. pizza pan, forming a ring with pointed ends facing the outer edge of pan and wide ends overlapping.

Combine the remaining ingredients; spoon over wide ends of rolls. Fold points over filling and tuck under wide ends (filling will be visible).

Bake at 375 degrees F for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Yield: 6 servings









Joke of the day


Would you look at that?? They're making a baby right in the front yard!

It's disgraceful.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

CIJ day 29




CIJ today will be for guys!

Recipe - gift in a jar: BBQ spice rub


1 part each: onion powder and cumin1.5 parts each: brown sugar, paprika and chili powder.5 parts each: coriander and garlic salt

Anotherversion too:
1 part each: chili powder, paprika and kosher salt1.5 parts of brown sugar

From : http://whatscookingblog.com/2009/11/19/making-homemade-gifts-from-the-kitchen-with-kids/

Craft: Nuts & bolts Santa, snowman & angel


Get the instructions here:
http://www.favecrafts.com/Ornaments/Nuts-and-Bolts-Christmas-Ornaments-from-Inspired-at-Home

Joke - Dear Darling Son
Dear Darling Son (and That Person You Married),
Merry Christmas to you, and please don't worry. I'm just fine considering I can't breathe or eat.

The important thing is that you have a nice holiday, thousands of miles away from your ailing mother. I've sent along my last ten dollars in this card, which I hope you'll spend on my grandchildren. God knows their mother never buys them anything nice. They look so thin in their pictures, poor babies.

Thank you so much for the Christmas flowers, dear boy. I put them in the freezer so they'll stay fresh for my grave. Which reminds me -- we buried Grandma last week. I know she died years ago, but I got to yearning for a good funeral so Aunt Viola and I dug her up and had the services all over again. I would have invited you, but I know that woman you live with would have never let you come.

Well son, it's time for me to crawl off to bed now. I lost my cane beating off muggers last week, but don't you worry about me. I'm also getting used to the cold since they turned my heat off and am grateful because the frost on my bed numbs the constant pain. Now don't you even think about sending any more money, because I know you need it for those expensive family vacations you take every year. Give my love to my darling grandbabies and my regards to whatever-her-name-is -- the one with the black roots who stole you screaming from my bosom.

Merry Christmas.
Love, Mom

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

CIJ day 28



Recipe - gift in a jar

Curried lentil soup
Ingredients
· 2 ( 1 quart) jars with tight-fitting lids
· 1 pound(s) red lentils
· Salt
· 6 tablespoon(s) minced dried onion
· 2 tablespoon(s) curry powder
· 1 teaspoon(s) garlic powder
· 1 pound(s) green lentils
· 1/2 package(s) (5-ounce) dried apple rings, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
· 2 tablespoon(s) dried parsley leaves
Directions
1. In bottom of each glass jar, place 8 ounces red lentils; top with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, 3 tablespoons dried onion, 1 tablespoon curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 8 ounces green lentils, 1/2 cup apple pieces, and 1 tablespoon parsley, in that order. Seal jars and store at room temperature up to 1 month.
2. Prepare labels with cooking instructions; attach to jars. Add these cooking directions to each label before giving as a gift: Place lentil soup mix in 3-quart saucepan with 7 cups water. Heat to boiling on high. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Makes 8 cups soup.
http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/recipefinder/curried-lentil-soup-december-recipes

Craft of the day:


No instructions but pretty self-explanatory. Georgous!

Joke of the day - Holiday Eating Tips
I hate aspects of this time of year. Not for its crass commercialism and forced frivolity, but because it's the season when the food police come out with their wagging fingers and annual tips on how to get through the holidays without gaining 10 pounds.
1. About those carrot sticks. Avoid them. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. In fact if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they're serving rum balls.
2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. Like fine single-malt scotch, it's rare. In fact, it's even rarer than single-malt scotch. You can't find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not as if you're going to turn into an eggnogaholic or something. It's a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It's later then you think. It's Christmas!
3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That's the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.
4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with skim milk or whole milk. If it's skim, pass. Why bother? It's like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.
5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other peoples food for free. Lots of it. Hello? Remember college?
6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Years, You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.
7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa. Position yourself near them, and don't budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They're like a beautiful pair of shoes. You can't leave them behind. You're not going to see them again.
8. Same for pies. Apple. Pumpkin. Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or, if you don't like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert? Labor Day ?
9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it's loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean have some standards, mate.
10. And one final tip: If you don't feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven't been paying attention. Reread tips. Start over. But hurry! Cookieless January is just around the corner.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

CIJ day 27



Recipe - Butterscotch brownies - gift from the kitchen


Butterscotch Brownies
Makes: 24 bars
Prep: 30 minutes Bake: 20 minutes Cool: 2 hours

Ingredients
· 1/3 cup butter
· 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
· 1-1/3 cups flaked or shredded coconut
· 3/4 cup chopped pecans
· 1/2 cup butter, softened
· 1 cup packed brown sugar
· 1/2 tsp. baking soda
· 1/4 tsp. salt
· 3 eggs
· 1/2 tsp. vanilla
· 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
· 1/2 cup chopped pecans
· 1/2 cup tiny marshmallows
· Caramel-flavored ice cream topping (optional)

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 13x9x2-inch baking pan; set aside. In a small saucepan melt 1/3 cup butter; stir in 2/3 cup brown sugar, the coconut, and 3/4 cup pecans. Pat evenly in prepared pan; set aside.
2. In a large mixing bowl beat 1/2 cup butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add 1 cup brown sugar, the baking soda, and salt; beat until combined. Beat in eggs and vanilla until combined. Add flour and beat until combined. Stir in 1/2 cup pecans and marshmallows. Spoon small mounds of mixture over coconut mixture in pan. Carefully spread to cover.
3. Bake about 20 minutes (mixture should be evenly browned; center may jiggle slightly when shaken). Cool in pan on wire rack. To serve, cut into bars. Drizzle with caramel topping. Makes 24 bars.


Craft of the day - Candy cane signpost ornament


Materials
Large craft stick (ours was 4 ½ inches long)
Acrylic paint: white, green and red
Craft knife
Permanent marker
Glue
Small green felt holly leaves
Red mini pom-pom berries
White glitter
5-inch piece of ribbon

Instructions
1. Coat a large craft stick (ours was 4 ½ inches long) with white acrylic paint and another with green paint. Let them dry, then add stripes of red paint to the white stick.
2. Use a craft knife to cut a 3-inch section from the green stick, notching each end to create an arrow shape, as shown. Write "North Pole" on the sign in permanent marker, then glue the sign to the red-and-white craft stick.
3. Next, glue on small green felt holly leaves and red mini pom-pom berries. If you like, add dabs of white paint, then sprinkle on white glitter for snow.
4. Finally, glue both ends of a 5-inch piece of ribbon to the back of the signpost for a hanger and let the glue dry.

Joke - 20 Uses for Fruitcake
1. Use as a doorstop
2. Use as a paper weigh
3. Use to clean your pots and pans
4. Use as boat anchor
5. Use as bricks in fireplace
6. Build a house with them
7. Use it to hold up your Christmas tree
8. Use as a pencil holder
9. Give it to the cat for a scratching post
10. Put it in the back yard to feed the birds and squirrels
11. Hold up your car when changing tires
12. Slice and use for poker chips
13. Use it to carve your turkey on
14. Use as replacement for Duraflame log
15. Take it camping with you...use it to weigh down the tent
16. Use it as a seat at a stadium event
17. Stand on it when you change a lightbulb
18. Put it in the back of your car/truck for snow/ice driving
19. Replaces free weights when you work out
20. Use as book ends at the school library

Can you guess I don't like fruitcake?

Monday, 26 July 2010

CIJ day 26


Recipe - gifts from the kitchen - Deep chocolate brownies


Deep Chocolate Brownies
Makes: 24 bars
Prep: 25 minutes Bake: 35 minutes
Ingredients
· 1 egg
· 1 cup butterscotch-flavored ice cream topping
· 2 cups coarsely chopped pecans
· 2 cups flaked coconut
· 3/4 cup butter, softened
· 1-1/2 cups packed dark brown sugar
· 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
· 2 eggs
· 2 teaspoons vanilla
· 2 cups all-purpose flour
· 1 teaspoon baking powder
· 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
· 1/2 teaspoon salt
· 1 12-ounce package semisweet chocolate pieces
Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Lightly grease a 13x9x2-inch baking pan; set aside.
2. In a medium mixing bowl beat the 1 egg with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy and light colored. Stir in ice cream topping. Fold in pecans and coconut; set aside.
3. In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Beat in brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in cooled chocolate, the 2 eggs, and vanilla. Stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; beat or stir into chocolate mixture. Stir in chocolate pieces. Spread in prepared pan; spread nut mixture over batter. Bake about 35 minutes or until golden and set. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Cut into bars. Makes 24 bars.

Craft of the day - Christmas ball


No-fuss kissing ball. Wrap a 4-inch Styrofoam ball in a 14-inch fabric square; secure with a rubber band. Thread the end of 1 1/2 yards of ribbon down through the band, around the ball, and up through the band's other side so ribbon ends match up (knot them to hang the ball). Wrap 14 inches of ribbon around the ball's other side (crossing first ribbon, as shown); tuck ends into band. Hide band with a shimmery bow and festive sprigs.

Joke :
To All EmployeesFrom Management
Subject Office conduct during the Christmas season

Effective immediately, employees should keep in mind the following guidelines in compliance with FROLIC (the Federal Revelry Office and Leisure Industry Council).

Running aluminum foil through the paper shredder to make tinsel is discouraged.
Playing Jingle Bells on the push-button phone is forbidden (it runs up an incredible long distance bill)
Work requests are not to be filed under "Bah humbug."
Company cars are not to be used to go over the river and through the woods to Grandma's house.
All fruitcake is to be eaten BEFORE July 25.
Egg nog will NOT be dispensed in vending machines.

In spite of all this, the staff is encouraged to have a Happy Holiday.

Sunday, 25 July 2010

CIJ day 25 - CHRISTMAS IN JULY!




Merry Christmas in July!!





Recipe - Christmas tree fruit brochettes

The "pine tree" here is a pineapple laden with colorful fruit-kabob branches.
Ingredients
Large pineapple
Small skewers (we used 50 6-inch bamboo skewers)
Assorted fresh fruit (we used grapes, strawberries, star fruit, and honeydew)
Instructions
To make the tree trunk, remove the top and cut 1 inch off of the bottom of a large pineapple, then peel it (all a parent's job).
On the skewers, thread three to five pieces of assorted fresh fruits.
Starting at the bottom, insert the skewers into the pineapple at a slight angle. Top the tree with skewered slices of star fruit. After the branches are eaten, don't forget to slice up the tree trunk.
(Source: Family fun)



Craft of the day - today is more like a viewing of a craft you could make or buy - a gingerbread tree.







Better viewed here: http://www.google.ca/imgres?imgurl=http://www.luv2craft4udesigns.com/epatterns/GBTreeLg.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.luv2craft4udesigns.com/epatterns/epatterns2.html&usg=__d07AVuCiNVcnHyIWMnOI1q4AQ8c=&h=681&w=366&sz=90&hl=fr&start=23&tbnid=GroIQiG7ASgzaM:&tbnh=139&tbnw=75&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dgingerbread%2Btree%26start%3D20%26um%3D1%26hl%3Dfr%26sa%3DN%26tbs%3Disch:1&um=1&itbs=1



Joke
As a little girl climbed onto Santa's lap, Santa asked the usual, "And what would you like for Christmas?"The child stared at him open mouthed and horrified for a minute, then gasped: "Didn't you get my E-mail?"

Saturday, 24 July 2010

CIJ day 24


Christmas-in-July Eve!

Recipe - Sandwich Christmas tree



Ingredients
1 16-ounce can whole-berry cranberry sauce
4 large (9- or 10-inch) spinach-flour tortillas or flat breads
Mayonnaise
3/4 pound thinly sliced Monterey Jack or American cheese
3/4 pound thinly sliced smoked turkey
1/2 head green-leaf lettuce
Toothpicks
Red and yellow bell peppers
cocktail onions, for garnish
Instructions
Spoon the cranberry sauce into a food processor and pulse it briefly.
Then lay the tortillas or flat bread on a flat working surface and lightly spread them with mayonnaise (a rubber spatula comes in handy for this). Now your kids can top each tortilla with a layer each of cheese and turkey. (Tip: When stacking ingredients, leave an inch margin along the top of the tortilla. Roll the bread toward that edge to keep the filling from falling out.)
Spread cranberry sauce on the turkey layers and cover them with lettuce. Snugly roll up the sandwiches, ending with the loose edges underneath.
With a serrated knife, cut each roll-up into 1 1/4-inch-wide pinwheels and insert a toothpick to hold each one together.
On a serving platter, arrange the pinwheels in rows to create a Christmas tree. Garnish with pepper-star ornaments (cut out with a small cookie cutter) and cocktail-onion lights
(Source: Family fun)

Craft of the day - fabric CandyCanes


No instructions... draw your candycane freehand in beautiful fabric & add ribbons, greenery & bells.

Joke:
Two young boys were spending the night at their grandparents. At bedtime, the two boys knelt beside their beds to say their prayers when the youngest one began praying at the top of his lungs.
"I PRAY FOR A NEW BICYCLE...I PRAY FOR A NEW NINTENDO... I PRAY FOR A NEW VCR..."
His older brother leaned over and nudged the younger brother and said, "Why are you shouting your prayers? God isn't deaf."

To which the little brother replied, "No, but Gramma is!"

Friday, 23 July 2010

CIJ day 23




Christmas Breakfast Casserole

Make-ahead casserole. 6-8 ServingsPrep: 10 min. + chilling Bake: 50 min. + standing
Ingredients
7 slices white bread, crusts removed and cubed
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
6 eggs
3 cups milk
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
6 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
Directions
In a greased 11-in. x 7-in. baking dish, combine the bread cubes and
cheese. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, mustard, salt and
pepper; pour over bread and cheese. Top with bacon. Cover and
refrigerate overnight.
Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake,
uncovered, at 350° for 50-55 minutes or until a knife inserted
near the center comes out clean. Let stand 10 minutes before
serving. Yield: 6-8 servings.
(Source: taste of home)

Christmas craft - Edible popcorn balls


Like decorations stolen from Willy Wonka's Christmas party, these ornaments are meant to be eaten. For a fun party activity, have children decorate their own. For homemade popcorn balls, try this recipe.

After sugar reaches the hard ball stage, it requires some speed in handling so the candy doesn't set. You may want to halve the recipes using cooked sugar the first few times you make them. If you make these balls to use as tree ornaments, be sure to pop some extra corn for munching.
Ingredients
6 cups popped popcorn (1/3 cup unpopped)
2 cups toasted oat cereal such as Quaker Toasted Oatmeal
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup water
1 tsp. vinegar
Instructions
In a large bowl mix the popped popcorn with the toasted oat cereal and set aside. In a heavy, medium-sized saucepan mix the sugar, syrup, water and vinegar. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture reaches 260 degrees on a candy thermometer, or until a bit of the mixture dropped into iced water forms into a hard ball.
Pour syrup over popcorn. Stir gently with an oiled wooden spoon until the popcorn is well coated. Allow to cool slightly, and when it is cool enough to handle, with buttered fingers press into balls.

To use as ornaments, wrap them in red and green ribbons. Makes around 18 three-inch balls.
Ingredients
Small popcorn ball (one for each guest)
Mini candy canes
Colored sugar
Frosting
Mini M&Ms
Instructions
You'll need a small popcorn ball for each person (ours are store-bought and about 3 inches wide). Use a wooden skewer to poke a small hole in the top, snap the end off of a mini candy cane to create a point, and gently press the sharp end of the cane into the popcorn ball far enough to make a loop, as shown.
For the sugar dots and lines, pour colored sugar onto a flexible paper plate (the flexibility makes it easy to pour the extra sugar back into the container when you're done). Fill a pastry bag with frosting, or scoop frosting into a quart-size plastic bag and cut off one corner. Working on one dot or line at a time, pipe frosting thickly onto the ball, then press the ball gently into the sugar so that only the frosting touches it. Use frosting to glue mini M&Ms to the ball.

Joke of the day:

Thursday, 22 July 2010

CIJ day 22




This is the recipe for the fudge I make every year.
http://whatscookingamerica.net/Candy/ChocolateFudge.htm



The only time I failed was when I used colored marshmallows.. warning.. they DO NOT melt!

Snowman soup craft
http://www.msgr.ca/msgr-2/Snowman%20Soup.htm







Joke:

Darn modern architecture!

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

CIJ day 21




Easy carrot cake bars

Santa Hat tutorial

Joke:
Why is it always cold at Christmas?
Because it's Decembrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

CIJ day 20


Craft of the day - Skating snowman (easy to make)




Recipe - almond-berries quickbread


Joke
Why did the snowman & his wife hang over the baby's crib?
A Snow Mobile!

Monday, 19 July 2010

CIJ day 19

Craft of the day - Mitten ornament tutorial


Recipe of the day: Bateaux aux endives-canneberges / Endive cranberry boats



Bateaux au poulet et aux canneberges

Préparation : 15 minutes
Cuisson : 0 minutes
Portions : 15
Ce qu'il vous faut
1 tasse de poulet cuit haché
2 oignons verts tranchés
1 c. à thé de gingembre frais râpé
1 c. à thé de zeste d’orange râpé
1/4 tasse de sauce Miracle Whip
15 feuilles d' endive
1/3 tasse de sauce aux canneberges entières
Ce qu’il faut faire
MÉLANGER le poulet, les oignons verts, le gingembre, le zeste et la sauce à salade.
DÉPOSER environ 1 c. à soupe du mélange de poulet sur chaque feuille d'endive. Garnir avec 1 c. à thé de sauce aux canneberges.
Servir immédiatement. Ou, couvrir et réfrigérer jusqu'au moment de servir.
Joke :
What do lions sing at Christmas?
Jungle bells!

Sunday, 18 July 2010

CIJ July 18



Recipe: Chocolate spoons
Prep: 30 minutes Chill: 1 1/2 hours

Ingredients
6 ounces semisweet chocolate pieces
20 to 24 plastic spoons
6 ounces white baking bar
Directions
1. In a heavy saucepan heat semisweet chocolate pieces over low heat, stirring constantly until the chocolate begins to melt. Immediately remove from heat; stir until smooth. Dip half of the spoons into chocolate, tapping handle of each spoon against side of pan to remove excess chocolate. Place spoons on waxed paper; refrigerate for 30 minutes to allow chocolate to set up.
2. In a heavy saucepan heat white baking bar over low heat, stirring constantly until baking bar begins to melt. Immediately remove from heat; stir until smooth. Dip remaining spoons into the melted baking bar. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to set up.
3. Place the remaining melted white baking bar in a small, self-sealing heavy plastic bag. Using scissors, make a small opening at one bottom corner of the bag; drizzle one or both sides of the chocolate-coated spoons with the melted white baking bar. Drizzle remaining melted bittersweet chocolate on white baking bar-coated spoons.
4. Refrigerate spoons for 30 minutes to allow chocolate to set up. Wrap each spoon separately and store in cool, dry place for 2 to 3 weeks. Makes 20 to 24 chocolate-covered spoons.
To Present This As a Gift: You will need matching teacup and saucer, coffee beans, gold-tasseled cord, cellophane bags, and thin gold ribbon.
Fill the cup with the beans. Place on the saucer. Place a pair of chocolate spoons on top of the cup. Arrange tasseled cord around the base of the cup. Wrap extra spoons in cellophane bags; tie with gold ribbon.
Also Try This: Wrap cellophane packages of spoons with gold curling ribbon to add even more cheer.
(Source: BHG)

Craft - Hanging mitten ornament

Joke of the day:





Saturday, 17 July 2010

CIJ July 17



Recipe - gifts from the kitchen - marinated olives & feta jar


Marinated Feta and Olives
Makes: 5 cups
Prep: 30 minutes Marinate: 4 to 6 hours

Ingredients
· 16 ounces feta cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
· 1 cup pitted kalamata olives
· 1 cup pitted green olives
· 1/2 cup bottled roasted red sweet peppers, cut into strips
· 1 red onion, cut into thin wedges
· 1/2 cup olive oil
· 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
· 4 cloves garlic, minced
· 1 tablespoon snipped fresh thyme
· 2 teaspoons snipped fresh oregano
· 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
Directions
1. In a large glass or stainless steel bowl, combine cheese cubes, kalamata olives, green olives, sweet peppers, and onion wedges.
2. In a screw-top jar, combine olive oil, vinegar, garlic, thyme, oregano, and pepper. Cover and shake well. Pour over mixture in bowl; toss gently to coat.
3. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 hours. Spoon into decorative jars or glasses. Cover and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Makes 5 cups.

Craft of the day - Candy cane jar


Just use your imagination... and scrapbooking supplies!
Joke - A Dog's Rules For Christmas
1. Be especially patient with your humans during this time. They may appear to be more stressed-out than usual and they will appreciate long comforting dog leans.
2. They may come home with large bags of things they call gifts. Do not assume that all the gifts are yours.
3. Be tolerant if your humans put decorations on you. They seem to get some special kind of pleasure out of seeing how you look with fake antlers.
4. They may bring a large tree into the house and set it up in a prominent place and cover it with lights and decorations. Bizarre as this may seem to you, it is an important ritual for your humans, so there are some things you need to know:
a. Don't pee on the tree
b. Don't drink water in the container that holds the tree
c. Mind your tail when you are near the tree
d. If there are packages under the tree, even ones that smell interesting or that have your name on them, don't rip them open
e. Don't chew on the cord that runs from the funny-looking hole in the wall to the tree
5. Your humans may occasionally invite lots of strangers to come visit during this season. These parties can be lots of fun, but they also call for some discretion on your part:a. Not all strangers appreciate kisses and leans
b. Don't eat off the buffet table
c. Beg for goodies subtly
d. Be pleasant, even if unknowing strangers sit on your sofa
e. Don't drink out of glasses that are left within your reach
6. Likewise, your humans may take you visiting. Here your manners will also be important:
a. Observe all the rules in #4 for trees that may be in other people's houses. (4a is particularly important)
b. Respect the territory of other animals that may live in the house
c. Tolerate children
d. Turn on your charm big time
7. A big man with a white beard and a very loud laugh may emerge from your fireplace in the middle of the night.DON'T BITE HIM!!

Friday, 16 July 2010

CIJ - day 16







Recipe - Pizza-pocket wreath


Ingredients
30 square wonton wrappers
Pepperoni slices
1/3 cup pizza sauce, plus extra for dipping
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 large green pepper, cut into thin strips
Small bowl of water
Vegetable oil

Instructions
Lay the wonton wrappers on a dry work surface. In the center of each wrapper, place a slice of pepperoni, 1/2 teaspoon of pizza sauce, 1/2 tablespoon of cheese, and 1 pepper strip.
Dip your finger in water and moisten all 4 edges of the wonton, then fold it in half, pressing along the edges to seal it.
Heat one teaspoon of oil in a large skillet over medium heat and cook the pockets until brown, about 2 minutes on each side, adding more oil as needed.
Remove the wontons from the pan and place them on paper towels to absorb excess oil. Arrange them in a wreath shape, and serve with extra sauce for dipping.


Craft of the day: Snowman placemarks




Using styrofoam balls - different size for body & head, assembled with toothpicks. Hats are made with metal-edged ribbon & fixed with a pin behind the head. Fold ribbon on top of head & add a small pompom fixed with a pin. The scarf is a length of pipe-cleaner. Books are white carton. Underneath is a square piece of foam or carton- Using 3 pins under fix the snowman.


Joke: Blondes Getting Christmas Tree

There were two blondes who went deep into the frozen woods searching for a Christmas tree. After hours of subzero temperatures a few close calls with hungry wolves, one blonde turned to the other and said, "I'm chopping down the next tree I see. I don't care whether it's decorated or not!"