Tuesday, September 30, 2008


At last Kraft has made it easier to use Carmel Candy in our Fall & Christmas baking or candy making...
Look at that package...It says UNWRAPPED CARMEL BITS!!!!!
Now part of the work making my Carmel Krispies is done for me...

I noticed when I started to post this, that it is my 51st post....Thought it would take me longer than this to get there...
In honor of this I am going to tell you how to make your own....
Prim Linen Spray:

You can make this spray for ironing, to freshen sheets and towels in the linen closet, on old textiles to freshen them, as an air freshener or as I like to do, spray onto my prim items I have made...For this I use a scent that goes with what I made...

4 ounces of distilled water (tap water will cause it to become cloudy and over time plug up the sprayer)
1 ounce of 100 proof rubbing alcohol (DO NOT USE ISOPROYL)
10 drops of an non staining essential oil
5 ounce spray bottle

Mix the essential oil into the alcohol, the alcohol will take on the scent of the oil...Slowly add the distilled water, stirring constantly...Fill the spray bottle..
Store in a cool dark place and shake the bottle before using....You might want to test on an inconspicuous spot before spraying...
Use these non staining essential oils for the linen sprays..
You can use regular candle scents for your prim items...Just don't spray them and then put them in the oven, as the heat will make the smell evaporate....
If you want your item to appear like it has rust spots on it, then after spraying sprinkle on some cinnamon and spray again and let dry....Then it really smells good and your customers will love the smell

Monday, September 29, 2008

Peach Dump Cake....Easy & Ummm Good!!!

This is for Pam....She doesn't like apples and wanted something made with peaches....


1 box cake mix (yellow cake mix or white cake mix)
1 can of chunky yellow cling peaches, drained
1 can of crushed pineapple, drained
1 stick of butter
1 - 1 1/2 cup of crushed nuts of choice (walnuts or pecans)
1/2 cup brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350.
Lightly grease (bottom only) of a cake pan (13x9).
Melt cubed butter in microwave and set aside.
Open canned peaches, drain and dump into cake pan. If desired cut peaches into smaller pieces, no need to do this prior just cut them while they are in the pan.
Sprinkle entire (dry) cake mix on top of peaches.
On top of cake mix add crushed drained pineapple
Sprinkle desired nuts on cake mix.
Pour butter evenly over nuts.
Sprinkle brown sugar over the top
Bake for 45 mins to 1 hour.
Cake will appear wet and uncooked but once cooked it is delicious, almost cobbler in nature. It is especially good served warm a la mode

Sunday, September 28, 2008

An Apple A Day!

Here's a handful of ideas to make use of autumn's abundance of apples..

Sprinkle thin slices of apple lightly with sugar, then saute in butter for 5 minutes, until golden...Fold into mashed potatoes.

Cut small cubes of apples and celery, then combine with walnut pieces...Toss with mayonnaise and season with chopped parsley, salt & pepper...This is a great salsd.

Substitute chopped apples for chopped celery in tuna salad..

Instead of lettuce, thinly slice apples on a turkey or ham sandwich..Top with mayonnaise or honey mustard.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Tis The Season For Apple Pies!! Yes By Golly It Sure Is!!

Apple Pie!!
I do very little baking now days, but every once in a while I'll bake an Apple Pie…
I make a pretty good pie crust, but I'm usually making a crust for a savory dish. I had a whole bag of apples, so it seemed like a good time to bake an apple pie...

This is my favorite pie crust....I use to make so many pies, (14 pumpkin pies for Thanksgiving) and this one was so fast, easy and turned out perfect every time...


1 c. flour, plus 2 tbsp.
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 c. oil
2 tbsp. cold water

1 3/4 c. flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 c. oil
3 tbsp. cold water
Mix and roll between wax paper.


7 tart apples, peeled and cored
1 cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, or to taste
1 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon corn starch
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
salt to taste
2 recipes unbaked pie shells
1 tablespoon butter

1.Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
2.Cut the apples into 1/4 inch slices.
3.In a mixing bowl, combine sugar, cinnamon, flour, nutmeg (or apple pie spice), and salt; mix thoroughly. Pour the spice mix over the apples and stir until the apples are coated.
4.Line one crust in a 9 inch deep dish pie pan. Place the apples in the pie crust. Dot the apple filling evenly with butter. Fit the top crust over the apples. Press the crust down gently and cut 3 or 4 slits in the top crust to allow steam to escape while the pie bakes
5.Bake in the preheated oven 50 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. Check the pie after the first 30 minutes of cooking: if the crust is already browned reduce the heat to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) to allow the apples to cook without the crust burning.

Baking Apple Pies!!
Baking apple pies is a rather straightforward technique, but a few tips can help to make your pies come out looking and tasting perfect.

1. Preheat the oven to the temperature the recipe you are following recommends. Most apple pies bake at a temperature of between 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Some recipes call for baking the pie in a 450 degree F oven for the first part of baking, then turning down the oven to about 350 degrees F. This helps set the shape of the crust in recipes that contain a lot of fat; it can keep your crust from slouching.
2. To add a richer color to a double-crust or lattice-topped pie, brush the top crust with milk or lightly beaten egg before baking.
3. Baking a pie with a raw apple filling will take about an hour. Always bake pies on a baking sheet to prevent spillovers in the oven. Apple pies cook for approximately 45 minutes. When using a pre-cooked filling, pies can bake at a higher temperature for a shorter period of time, just enough to thoroughly bake the crust and heat the filling.
To check the doneness of the filling, insert a knife into the center of the pie. If it meets with little or no resistance, the pie is done. If the pie is not quite done but the top or edges are becoming too dark, loosely cover the top of the pie with aluminum foil to shield it from the heat. A glass pie dish is a great way to ensure the bottom crust is fully baked; using a baking stone or pizza stone is another trick. Baking on a stone ensures that the bottom crust on even the juiciest apple pie will be done when the top is brown.
4. For shine and sparkle, thin a quarter cup of light corn syrup with very hot water. When the pie is done, brush the thinned syrup over the top of the crust. You can add granulated sugar or decorative sugar at this time. Return the pie to the oven for two to three minutes to let the glaze dry and set. Once the pie is done baking, carefully remove it from the oven. Let the pie cool to room temperature before slicing to allow the filling to set

Friday, September 26, 2008

Corn Tassel Wreath Anyone!!!

I just have to post this, so if you can get the tassels you can make your own...Isn't it just Prim Beautiful!!!...You will find how to make it by visiting Four Fifty Three Blog .....

My Soothing Waterfall & Pond!!!!

My soothing noise maker......I love the sound of the waterfall!!
When I am in the gazebo I can see and hear the falling water...The gazebo has a hanging chandlier and there are lights on the pond, so sometimes I am out there late at night enjoying my books, music and the waterfall!!!
I will also enjoy talking to my friend Carla, in WV as she is a night owl just like me...One of the nice perks of living in a small town....
You can see that fall is here and of course here in Minnesota the pond plants and fish must be brought inside so they don't freeze....
I have my tank set up and ready for the fish to be brought inside....The plants will be clipped back and then put into plastic bags and stored in a small room under the basement steps.....I drain the pond, catch the fish and then fill the pond back up and put a pool mattress into the pond and a blue tarp over that, to keep the fall & winter debris out of the pond....Dakota, my lovable Lab, will do you know what there, when it freezes and this keeps her off that area....It is just closer for her than going to the back yard....I
t looks so bare when the gazebo and pond are done for the summer...and it also brings thoughts of shoveling snow...My granddaughter's husband Kevin keeps my driveway plowed during the winter...such a nice guy!!!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

My Gazebo That Brought Me So Much Pleasure!!!!

Next week I have to pack up everything that is in the Gazebo....store for the winter and then take all but the frame down and store it till next April, or if the weather was like it was this spring, till May....
I hope my ferns live inside, but I doubt they will....I know as soon as the fronds start to lose their leaves and make a mess they will end up outside to freeze....
It isn't even down yet and already I am missing it.....I spent many a morning having my coffee, reading and watching the birds...Had a beautiful flock of Orioles eating the grape jelly and orange halves, they brought me so much pleasure.....Well they have been gone for over a month now, the geese are flying south, nuts and leaves are falling, the nights are getting cooler...so time to part with this bit of pleasure for this year.....Till next year..

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Pumpkin Facial Mask & Pumpkin Sugar & Spice Scrub

Autumn can play some nasty tricks on your skin with its winds and chilly weather,and since I am on this PUMPKIN streak I thought I would give you these great treats using pumpkin.
The perfect icon of the season, to help nourish your skin beautifully, sloughing off dead cells to reveal the fresh new skin underneath.
Pumpkin, after all, contains lots of anti-oxidant vitamins A and C, as well as zinc and beneficial alpha-hydroxide acids.
Here is how to make a nourishing facial mask and a sugar and spice scrub using Pumpkin!!!....

Pumpkin Facial Mask:

2 teaspoons cooked or canned pumpkin
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/4 teaspoon milk (or whipping cream, if your skin is very dry)
1. Combine ingredients and apply to a clean face with gentle circular motions, avoiding the area around your eyes.
2. Allow mask to remain on skin for 10 to 15 minutes, then rinse with warm water, pat dry, and apply your usual moisturizer.

Pumpkin, Sugar, and Spice Scrub:

1/2 cup cooked or canned pumpkin, pureed
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1. Combine ingredients in a bowl.
2. Stand in a tub or shower stall and use a damp washcloth to scoop some of the mixture up. Apply to body, starting with your feet and working your way up, but avoiding your face. Scrub gently using circular motions.
3. Rinse with warm water and pat dry

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


The onset of fall has got me on this pumpkin kick. So I was looking for different pumpkin recipes the other day and came across this one in the Country Living Magazine....Once I saw it I just had to try it. I've never even heard of pumpkin cornbread before, so my curiosity was definitely piqued.

Quick & Easy Pumpkin Corn Bread!

1 box cornbread mix (8.5 oz.)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 cup can canned pumpkin
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 8 x 8-inch square pan or 8-inch cast iorn skillet.
Mix the cornbread, following directions on the box.. Add vanilla then nutmeg. Mix together. Add pumpkin to mixture then pour into prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until knife comes out clean.
Makes 6 servings

Sunday, September 21, 2008


My good friend Renee, of Birch Berry Farms has opened a shoppe!! Three drum rolls please!!!!......This month she is featuring BURNISHED Sliver and has some exceptional pieces with great patina, to delight your eyes...Be sure to visit her shoppe...Just click on Birch Berry Farms to go there....

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


If you have enjoyed pumpkin butter from farms stands, and wanted to make your own, but thought it might be too difficult; guess again!
These step-by-step directions will make it so simple, anyone can make better pumpkin butter and at a much lower cost.

Now, with a crockpot, it's easy!

A side benefit is that your house will smell wonderful while it is cooking - much better than potpourri!


8 cups canned pumpkin
4 cups sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
6 tablespoons of lemon juice


Add the lemon juice to the pumpkin and spices.
Set the crock pot on low or medium heat.
Cover it loosely or use a large pot splatter-guard. It will spatter as it boils slowly, so I also cover nearby surfaces with towels. You don't want to seal it tightly because you want the steam to escape so it can reduce in volume and thicken.
Leave it to cook for 6 - 8 hours. How long depends on the size and power of your crock pot, and how thick you like it, If you want to stir it occasionally, that's fine but not necessary.

Spoon hot pumpkin mixture into sterilized, very hot, pint or half pint jars , filling to within 1/4 inch from top. Remove air bubbles; wipe jar rims. Cover at once with metal lids, and screw on bands.

This is like eating Pumpkin Pie on toast….

***Prepared this way, the jars have a shelf life of 6 months in the fridge. Note that it should NOT be stored on the shelf, unrefrigerated!!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Halloween Came Early For Me...Just Look At What I Received Yesterday In The Mail!!

My good friend Renee, from "Birch Berry Farms" sent me this gorgeous knitted wool pumpkin, that she knitted and then needled felted, a bar of her Pumpkin Soap that she hand makes (check her soap out on Etsy), and some luscious smelling potpourri in a silver antique soap dish...It came wrapped in orange tissue paper and inside a large cellophane bag tied with raffia...I was so surprised when I opened it and saw this lovely gift from Renee....She is just the best....You can find her on Ebay, Etsy and of course the
..Be sure to look at her goodies and her soaps! You will be glad you did...Just click on the words Ebay, Etsy and WSOAPP SHOPPES to go there!!!!!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Butter, Butter, Butter; Apple Butter That Is!!!

When apples are plentiful in the fall it seems you can't find enough things to do with them! make a whole pile of apple pies for family get togethers, apple slices for the grandchildren, apple cake, apple cobbler, apple bread or jelly; but here is something old that is new again.....APPLE BUTTER!...What could be more fall-like than apples, sugar and spices slowly cooking all day long? So I made a big batch of apple butter! The aroma that this makes as it cooked away in the crock pot was amazing. It does’t take much to get lots of flavor, it is a mix of sweet, tart and spice all at once; I was also drying apples and my home smelled sooo good...All the neighbors came over to see what I was cooking;
This Apple Butter is so easy to make, using your crock pot!
Now if you don't have Apple trees in your yard or have an orchard nearby, check out your local farmer's market...This time of year they always have Apples & Pumpkins...I am lucky as we have about 4 orchards nearby..
This recipe makes a small batch, so you don't really need to give it a water bath...just store the jars in the fridge...or if you want to give as gifts, then you will need to give them the old water bath treatment for 15 minutes!

10 t0 12 large cooking apples (14 cups)...I used Winesap apples
2 cups apple juice or cider
3 cups white sugar ( I am diabetic so I used Splenda in one batch)
1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves


Core and chop unpeeled apples (bite size)
Combine with the apple juice or cider
Mix sugar (splenda) with the cinnamon & ground cloves
Add to the apples in the crock pot
Cover; cook on low for 10 hours or on high for 4 hours (the 10 hour one was better)
Remove cover and drain the apples
Put into blender or food processor and blend on high speed until smooth
Return apples to slow cooker
DO NOT COVER and cook on low for 1 hour or till it is the desired consistency
Mine took 1-1/2 hours;

Storage of Apple Butter:

While the mixture is very hot ladle the cooked Apple Butter into sterilized half-pint jars, leaving a 1/2" head space.
Put the lids on and then tighten the rings but not to tight.
Process in boiling water canner for 15 minutes
Remove from water bath and set on a dry cup towel till cool and lids pop closed..
Store in a cool dark place
You can just put into the sterilized jars, cover with the lids and rings, let cool and store in fridge...If you like Apple Butter this will go fast!
I got this recipe from Home Cooking and made a few changes;
Next I will do the Slow Cooked Pumpkin Butter and is that good.
Just like having pumpkin pie on your toast!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Another Great Give Away!

Char from The Pickled Pepper Patch is giving away this great medium sized breadboard, faux cinnamon rolls that she makes, two aged wooden spoons and a wooden bowel to the very lucky winner. I just love it!!! Stop over for a visit she will draw the name on September 15th. Her link is in my Favorite Blogs...She also has a great tutorial for making luminaries and some freebe graphic images...Be sure to check her out!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Take A Quick Look At My CLEAN Craft Room!!

Thank goodness that job is done..
Took me over a week to clean and rearrange everything..
Gave away twice as much fabric as you see here, but it went for good causes!!
Chemo Patients Caps were made from the knit fabric..
Somalian Women are being taught to sew..
A Women Church Group is making quilts..
and Disadvantage Kids are learning basic sewing...
My hat goes off to all these Women for giving of their time
and I have a nice clean work space!!