Friday, December 28, 2007

Monday, December 24, 2007

Happy Birthday, My Sweet Boy

We love you so much and thank God for you every day!
God bless you, my Son!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Daring Bakers Challenge #2!!

Yes, it's a Yule Log and the cookie sheets in the oven are holding the meringue mushroom pieces. I've got to say, I'm pretty disappointed with the picture quality, but company was over here (to help us eat it) and I didn't have too much time.

For those of you interested, I made 1.5 recipes of this cake so it would feed all of my company. The cake itself was a genoise, I filled it with chocolate mousse and the icing was espresso~ mocha buttercream. I colored the icing brown so it would look like a log, but I didn't want to dilute the coffee flavor with any chocolate. The "snow" on the log was white chocolate shavings.

Friday, December 21, 2007

And the winner is...

(Drumroll please)

Rebecca N from Renaissance!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Rave for Vision Forum

Just a note or two while my cakes bake and my other ingredients for this weekend simmer away.

First, My contest ends tonight. Anyone is eligible to enter and I know that some of you faithful blog checkers have not yet entered.

Second, Vision Forum is having a great deal online. If you buy a gift certificate online of $50 or more before midnight tonight, they will give you a $25 free! Check it out!

Thirdly, I've been listening to the B.C. lecture series from Vision Forum downstairs while on my treadmill lately and I must tell you they are spectacular! I've only heard the first two cds in the series and I've listened to them both twice. I simply cannot absorb all the information once or twice. It is fascinating history from a solely and thoroughly biblical perspective at the beginning of creation going until the time of Christ. As a homeschool mom, this is an invaluable resource. I cannot say enough about it.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Prep Week

As I mentioned the other day, we're having company this Saturday and a mini birthday party for David on Sunday after church. I've been trying to put together a few menus for my guests. I would definitely be open to suggestions if you have any! As you can tell, Sunday will be more informal and casual. Lately, we've been trying to have a little bit of a Sabbath celebration on Saturday nights, preparing for the Lord's Day ahead, so it will be fun to incorporate guests into that. Be watching on Saturday for the Daring Bakers Challenge reveal- I'm serving it to my guests. Hint: I've always wanted to make one of these and yes, it has to do with Christmas.

Saturday's Menu

Rosemary Polenta Wedges
Green Beans
Crab-stuffed Shells with Peas and Leeks
Parker House Rolls
Mashed Sweet Potatoes (maybe?)
Coffee and mini chocolate almond biscotti
Super Secret Daring Bakers Dessert
Peppermint ice cream
Flourless Chocolate Cake

Sunday's Menu

*Sausage and Pepperoni * Ham & Pineapple
* Vegetable * Margharita
Hot Chocolate and Homemade Marshmallows
Chocolate Birthday Cake
Peppermint Ice Cream

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

What I want for Christmas

As you know I am incredibly blessed, but I thought of a few things I could use for Christmas...

My whole family to live closer~ yes, everyone
A Post Office with a drive through window
A Post-Baby Instant Weight-Loss pill
A Bottomless Pantry
A Saturn Outlook
A printer that will never run out of ink
Hypnotic cleaning instruction for my children
Apple, Banana, and orange trees for the back yard
A wildly successful home business for Tim
A wildly successful home business (that requires minimal time) for me

Monday, December 17, 2007


Over the course of next weekend, we are having a total of 30 people to our house. (! But that's another post for later today...) However, I realized that we only have 12 place settings of silverware. "Hmm", I thought. I've been trying to stay away from plastic and paper things lately. I'd have to buy plastic forks and spoons anyway, and why not make a tiny investment for something you can use for the rest of your life? Of course, If you know me at all, you will know where I went to resolve this dilemma. Yes, friends, Goodwill to the rescue! I found a beautiful pattern for~ Guess! $1 a piece? .50 a piece? NO! $0.15 a piece!!!! The other problem was that now that I have a few pieces, I have no idea of the pattern name, only that it was made by "Rogers". After quite a bit of sleuthing online, I've discovered that Rogers was taken over by Oneida and the pattern is Summer Rose. So many sellers on eBay go to estate sales and find silverware and they themselves don't know the pattern name and list it as "Rogers flatware - 4 pieces" which helps no one. The missing link I finally found was here. You have no idea how many pages I had to sift through to find it!

Also, how is it that I've had 1350 hits since October 1st and only 5 contest entrants?

Friday, December 14, 2007

Contest Time Again!

But this time, it's my contest! Yep, I'm having a Vision Forum giveaway! "The League of Grateful Sons" DVD, to be exact. You can read info on this wonderful DVD here. On December 20th, at 8:30 PM (mountain time) one of my children will be pulling the name of the winner out of our stockpot and I will announce it to the world. However, to enter you must comment to this post and leave at least your first name (yes James, your real name) and at least one thing you are thankful for. To make it fair, only one entrant per family and no Giedds are eligible to win. Please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery. Merry Christmas Everyone!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie...

As we were decorating the Christmas tree, I came across our "1st Christmas Together~ 2003" ornament which led me to...

Dabney's First Christmas ornament ~2004
which led me to...

David's 1st Christmas ornament~ 2005
Which led me to...

Joshua's first Christmas ornament ~2007
They all reminded me of my first Giedd Christmas (not that long ago), when my brother and sister in law got me my beloved ice cream maker, which made me want to make my Chocolate Fudgesicle Ice Cream. (Did I mention it's fat free and sugar free?)

Snowy Sunday

Guess what I finally made!

Yes! They're marshmallows!
I've been wanting to make homemade marshmallows seriously, for about 10 years. My family thought I was nutso to want to make them myself, but they're really easy! I tried to dip them in fudge and I may try it again, but I won't douse them in powdered sugar first. We just ended up eating the fudge separately ~ and my family loved it.

Marshmallows (adapted from The Martha Stewart Show)

* Nonstick cooking spray
* 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
* 2 cups sugar
* 1/2 cup light corn syrup
* 1/2 cup hot water
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 2 large egg whites
* 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* 1 cup cornstarch (I used powdered sugar)


1. Lightly spray a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Sprinkle gelatin over a small bowl filled with 1/2 cup cold water; let stand to soften.
2. In a heavy bottomed saucepan, mix together sugar, corn syrup, hot water, and salt. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring, until sugar has dissolved. Continue cooking, without stirring, until mixture reaches the soft-ball stage, about 240 degrees on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat and add gelatin mixture; set aside.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites on high speed until stiff peaks form. With the mixer running, slowly add sugar mixture. Add vanilla and continue beating for 10 minutes until the mixture looks like marshmallow.
4. Transfer marshmallow mixture to prepared baking dish and spread evenly. Spray a piece of parchment paper with nonstick cooking spray and cover marshmallow. Let stand overnight.
5. Remove parchment paper and invert marshmallow onto work surface. Trim 1/4-inch from edges of marshmallow. Cut marshmallows into 1 1/2-inch squares. Pour cornstarch (or powdered sugar) in a bowl; working in batches, gently add marshmallows and toss to coat.

Playtime for Josh

I can't believe my baby is big enough to play in the exersaucer!

Sweetie Pie

Lemon Progress

I think there is a lemon meringue pie in our future...

Monday, December 03, 2007

Cookie Boys

That's her "magnifying glass" look.

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