Saturday, 25 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 25 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 25

CIJ day 25 / jour 25
Christmas Enjoy jar.  I would include a throw, a Christmas cd or a Christmas movie, holiday flavored tea or coffee, an ornament, Christmas scented candles, Christmas themed socks, snowman soup (hot cocoa), christmas mug, reindeer dust, a letter from Santa, Santa key, an Elf, mini-usb lightbulbs to put around the computer screen (but some at target last Chrismas for 5$) etc….

Friday, 24 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 24 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 24

CIJ day 24 / jour 24

Hot Fudge Sauce

Yield: A heaping 2 cups
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes


2/3 cup heavy cream
½ cup Lyle's Golden Syrup, or light corn syrup
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
¼ cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
¼ teaspoon sea salt
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped, divided in half
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


1. In a 2-quart saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the cream, syrup, brown sugar, cocoa powder, salt and half of the chocolate to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low or low (enough to maintain a low simmer), and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining chocolate, the butter, and the vanilla extract, stirring until smooth. Let cool for 20 to 30 minutes before using (it will thicken as it cools). Store in a jar or airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. To reheat, microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute until it's pourable but still thick.

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 23 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 23

CIJ day 23 / jour 23
Homemade (crockpot) apple butter
Slow Cooker Apple Butter
Yield: 4 pints
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 12 hours

6 1/2 pounds apples - peeled, cored and sliced
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1. Place the apples in a slow cooker. In a medium bowl, combine sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg cloves and salt. Pour the mixture over the apples and mix well.
2. Cook in slow cooker on low for about 10 hours, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is thickened and dark brown.
3. Uncover, stir in vanilla and continue cooking uncovered on low for about 2 hours.
4. Use an immersion blender to puree the apple butter until smooth.
5. Spoon the mixture into sterile containers, cover and refrigerate for up to two weeks or freeze.
6. Serve on breads, muffins, pork chops or just eat it with a spoon.

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 22 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 22

CIJ day 22 / jour 22
Christmas activity jar.  Write down ideas on a piece of paper and choose a paper when you want to have some Christmas fun.
·         Make a Gingerbread house
·         Make Christmas cards
·         Bake cookies
·         Decorate the Christmas tree
·         Make ornaments
·         Drink cocoa
·         Watch a Christmas movie
·         Sing Christmas songs
·         Donate Toys for tots
·         Take a ride to look at Christmas lights
·         Make salt-dough ornaments
·         Visit Santa
·         Make popcorn and cranberry garland
·         Write a letter to Santa
·         Go on a sleigh ride
·         Eat candy canes
·         Go to a holiday parade
·         Make orange and clove pomanders
·         Make hot chocolate balls ( )
·         Make paper snowflakes
·         Dry orange slices
·         Read a Christmas story
·         Make snow ice cream
·         Camp out under the Christmas tree
·         Host a cookie swap
·         Eat a Christmas meal with friends and family


Monday, 20 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 20 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 20

CIJ day 20 / jour 20

1 Cup Instant Tea (unsweetened)
2 Cups Tang
1 Cup Lemonade Mix (Countrytime, etc)
1/2 tsp Ground Cloves
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon

Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl or large sealing bag; mix well.
Serve 2 TBS mix in a mug of hot water.

Instant Vanilla Chai Mix (Source : )
1½ cups instant unsweetened tea powder (I use Nestea.)
2 cups granulated white sugar
1 cup non-fat instant dry milk powder
1 cup plain non-dairy creamer powder
1 cup French vanilla or vanilla non-dairy creamer powder
1 tablespoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
½ teaspoon ground black pepper (This is optional, but makes the chai spicier.)
¼ teaspoon grated nutmeg
⅛ teaspoon ground cloves

Add all of the ingredients to a large mixing bowl and whisk until evenly combined. Process 1 cup at a time in pulses in a blender or food processor until it is a fine powdery consistency much like powdered sugar. Wait until the dust in the blender or processor dies down before removing the lid, then spoon into airtight containers for storage. Repeat until all of the mixture has been finely powdered.
Tightly covered, this mix is good for 6 months to a year, stirring every so often to prevent clumping.

For Gift Giving:
Divide the powdered mix between small 4 or 8 ounce jars. Label jars with instructions on how to prepare the chai.

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 19 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 19

CIJ day 19 / jour 19

pint jar
3 cinnamon sticks
3 bay leafs
2-3 Tbs. whole cloves {these will cost you the most}
1 lime slice
2 lemon wedges
2 orange slices

Place ingredients in jar and fill with water.  Attach a label or tag that reads:  

Pour contents into saucepan on stovetop and simmer on low heat.  Add water as needed.  

Have a pot of this simmering on the stove during the holiday season.

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 18 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 18

CIJ day 18 / jour 18
Winter activity jar.
Put ideas on pieces of paper which you put in a jar.  Once a week or during snowdays you can choose an activity in the jar. 
For example :
·         Movie Marathon
·         PJ day
·         Make a snowman
·         Bake cookies
·         Decorate the house for winter
·         Make indoor s’mores
·         Drink hot cocoa with marshmallows
·         Sit by the fire and read a good book
·         Go ice skating
·         Have an indoor picnic
·         Take pictures in the snow
·         Carriage ride
·         Go sledding
·         Snow-shoeing
·         Snowmobiling
·         Snowball fight
·         Trivia game
·         Fondue
·         Tea party
·         Snow fort
·         Bundle up and go for a walk
·         Make paper snowflakes
·         Write a family newsletter
·         Snow angels
·         Create!
·         Invite friends over for a meal
Have fun!

Friday, 17 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 17 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 17

CIJ day 17 / jour 17

Rub jar recipes.  A few small jars with different rubs all wrapped together.

Herb-rub recipe (Source: ).  Full tutorial and printables on the site.

Homemade Savory Herb Rub

1-1/3 cups kosher salt or coarse sea salt
⅔ cup dried parsley (.4 oz bottle)
⅓ cup dried thyme
¼ cup dried rosemary, crushed
¼ cup dried shredded lemon peel
¼ cup coarse ground black pepper
2 tablespoons garlic powder
2 tablespoons dried minced onion

In a medium bowl, stir togethers salt, parsley, thyme, rosemary, lemon peel, pepper, garlic powder and onion. Divide mixture among ½ cup glass jars or gift tines, stirring occasionally as you spoon.
Cover and label jars or tins and add hang tags with directions for use.
Instructions for use as a rub: Lightly brush pork, chicken, lamb or fish with olive oil. Tub the herb mixture evenly over all sides of meat, poultry or fish. Let stand for 15 minutes. Grill or Roast.

This batch will make five 1/2 cup mixtures, with an extra 1/4 cup.

Carolina BBQ Rub

Prep Time:
5 Min
2 Tbsp salt
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp ground cumin
2 Tbsp chili powder
2 Tbsp black pepper
2 Tbsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp dried, minced onions
1 Tbsp cayenne pepper
1/4 c paprika

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix well; use as a dry rub on beef, chicken, or pork.

Makes about 2 cups
½ cup Paprika
¼ cup Kosher Salt
¼ cup Sugar
¼ cup Cumin
¼ cup Granulated Garlic
¼ cup Chili Powder
2 tablespoons Mustard Powder
2 tablespoons Ground Black Pepper
2 tablespoons Cayenne Pepper
In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients and gently whisk together. Using a funnel, spoon the mixture into 4oz mason jars. Cover and seal.

Rub steaks with Olive Oil then, generously coat with Magic Rub Seasoning. Marinate 1 hour before grilling.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Christmas in July 2015 day 16 / Noël en juillet 2015 jour 16

CIJ day 16 / jour 16

Relaxation jar.  Use the big ones for this.

I would include a cd or dvd, some fluffy socks, a small book or magazine, writing paper and nice pens, a mug, tea and/or coffee, some chocolate, bubble bath, scented candles .  I would also attach a throw to the jar.