Cherish Yesterday...Dream Tomorrow...Live Today

Monday, December 12, 2011

Neck Pillows and Tasty Toasted Cheese

Good morning and happy Monday!  I am scrambling to get finished with handmade gifts, finishing touches, holiday baking and scheduling my last couple of get togethers to exchange gifts.  Also, I have to send a gift to California this year now that a dear friend has moved so I have to get that in the mail(note to self!).  This is such a wonderful time of year but it is easy to feel a little hectic. 

I have pictured above the two neck pillows I made for my co-workers.  I love mine so much, I thought they would make awesome and practical gifts.  I was able to make these with 2 fat quarters a piece and some matching ribbon and fiberfill.  So far I have made four of them, all with quilter's cotton.  I wonder if they would be better with home decorator weight fabric.  I will have to make one and see.  At any rate, they make reading in bed or watching tv on the couch so much more comfortable.  The girls loved them.

  I also had to share a new take on a classic.  I was watching tv and saw a show that featured toasted pimento cheese sandwiches.  I had to try them so I headed to the grocery store, trying to remember what was in them.  I am only able to tell you what I used.  You can play with amounts because I did not follow an exact recipe.  I used shredded pepper jack cheese, shredded mild cheddar, a jar of chopped pimento with the juice, a dash of Green Tabasco, a dash of cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and mayo.  I mixed it together and toasted it between sliced bakery Italian bread.  It was awesome.  I served it with tomato soup.  I love how gooey it got and it had a little kick.   You could always substitute plain jack cheese for the pepper jack to tone it down slightly.  It is a keeper for sure.  This would be perfect for a Christmas brunch.  It really takes grilled cheese and makes it ready for prime time!

I hope everyone has a great week.  Today my grade level is throwing a "frost and decorate your own Christmas cookie" party.  I hope my co-workers enjoy themselves and remember the days when that was an important part of Christmas.  It signalled the beginning of the holiday for me when I was a kid.  Take care.  Nancy

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Gift Swap and a Crazy Good Pizza

Happy Sunday everyone and can you believe how fast this month of December snuck up on us?!  I can't wait to share my gift swap goodies with you.  I joined up with the Craftaholics Anonymous gift exchange party again this year and really enjoyed it.  I met a great partner named Kim and we chatted back and forth by way of emails and exchanged hand made gifts made with each other specifically in mind.  Pictured above is what I made her.  Green is her favorite color so I made her a scalloped bag in many fun patterns in green.  I also threw in a wooden snowman pin I painted and crafted and two chenille characters, a Santa and a gingerbread man.

In return, I received a beautiful tote bag, made with amazing attention to detail.  She even included my cat in it!  She put so much thought into it.  She said she thought I could use it to take things back and forth to school.  That is a perfect idea!  I love that she has some hidden pockets in it and the handles are bow ties. 
Mickey couldn't wait to see her likeness on the bag!  She had to get in the picture.  Thanks Kim, I love it. 

To finish up tonight, I want to share an amazingly yummy and crazy easy pizza.  It is a Reuben pizza.  Just take a Boboli or Freschetta pizza crust and top it with a small amount of Thousand Island Dressing.  Top with a can of sauerkraut drained and rinsed.  Pile on deli corned beef cut in strips.  Top with shredded swiss cheese.  Bake as the crust package instructs you to and-ta dah-that's it!  I served it with more TI dressing and we all loved it.  It couldn't have been easier(or tastier).

I hope everyone has a wonderful week.  Take time to smell the roses because this month can overtake you and before you know it, you're burnt out before Christmas.  Take care of yourselves and happy crafting.  Nancy