TIE-DYE EASTER EGGS

Using ordinary materials (vinegar, food coloring and whipping cream) you probably already have on hand to decorate gorgeous Easter eggs is so easy and fun too! You will want to wear gloves so as not to dye your fingers.

TIE-DYE EASTER EGGS
INGREDIENTS
Bowl of Vinegar
Whipped cream
Food coloring
Hard-boiled eggs

  • Boils eggs and cool to room temperature.
  • In a bowl large enough to hold all the eggs (or work in batches) place the eggs in the bowl and cover with vinegar for 20 minutes. The vinegar allows the dye to adhere to the egg shell better.
  • Dry the eggs and set aside.
  • In a large baking dish fill it with a thick layer (about 1 inch deep) of the whipping cream.
  • Generously dot the cream with various colors of food dye coating most of the surface fairly close together.
  • Drag a skewer or chopstick through the cream to create a tie-dye design, kind of like you’re making a marbled cake.
  • Place a layer of paper towels on a cookie sheet and set aside.
  • Put on gloves to protect your hands from the dye.
  • Gently place an egg on the surface of the whipped cream.
  • Slowly roll the egg over the surface to coat the shell.
  • Place the egg on the cookie sheet and repeat with remaining eggs. DO NOT WIPE ANYTHING OFF!
  • Let dry 20 minutes.
  • Fill a large bowl with water. The water will remove the excess cream leaving the design on the egg.
  • Gently submerge the egg and then GENTLY dry with paper toweling. DO NOT RUB HARD as you might rub off the design.
  • Store eggs in refrigerator.

NOTE: This can be done substituting shaving cream for whipped cream, but then they are for decoration only and NOT edible!!

LINKING WITH:  CELEBRATE YOUR STORY, CRAFTASTIC MONDAY, DISHING IT & DIGGING IT, NIFTY THRIFTY SUNDAY, SHOW & TELL, SUNDAYS AT HOME, SUNDAY’S BEST, THAT DIY PARTY, JCOOKING & CRAFTING WITH J&J, INPIRATION MONDAY , INSPIRE ME MONDAY , MADE BY YOU MONDAY, MAKE IT PRETTY MONDAY, MELT IN YOUR MOUTH MONDAY, MERRY MONDAY, MIX IT UP MONDAY, MOTIVATE ME MONDAY, PROJECT INSPIRED, SHOW AND SHARE, TUTORIALS & TIP , DIY TUESDAYS, LOU LOU GIRLS FABULOUS PARTY, THE SCOOP, TREASURE BOX TUESDAY, TUESDAYS AT OUR HOME, TUESDAYS WITH A TWIST,CREATIVE INSPIRATIONS, SHARE YOUR CUP , WINTER BLUES WEDNESDAY, WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY, SHOW ME WEDNESDAYS, WOW US WEDNESDAY , CREATIVE CIRCLE, DAGMAR’S PARTY, HOME SWEET HOME, FAVORITE THINGS, GRACE AT HOME, HOME MATTERS, PIN JUNKIE PIN PARTY, TALK OF THE TOWN, BLOGGER’S PIT STOP, HANDMADE HANGOUT, PRETTY PINTASTIC PARTY, SHARE IT ONE MORE TIME, SWAY SHAREFEST, WHAT TO DO WEEKENDS PARTY, BOUQUET OF TALENT PARTY, INSPIRE-BE-INSPIRED, RAE GUN BLOCK PARTY, I’M LOVIN’ IT, THIS IS HOW WE ROLL THURSDAY, FULL PLATE THURSDAY, FOODIE FRIDAY

HAPPY HOMEMAKER & MENU PLAN week 1 of 2018

May 2018 be what 2007-2017 were supposed to be!

Honestly, I’m looking forward to better things in the days to come. 

I’m not going to dwell on the past, BUT I am certainly going to focus on making 2018 the best year yet!

OUTSIDE MY WINDOW & THE WEATHER OUTSIDE

It’s 22 with the wind chill and I’m staying inside!  Highs this week are only supposed to be in the 30’s before wind chill so I’m avoiding the outside except for my follow up with the surgeon later this week.

ON THE BREAKFAST PLATE

Green Tea and Banana

AS I LOOK AROUND THE HOUSE / WEEKLY TO DO LIST & HOUSE PROJECTS

  • LAUNDRY… quite a few loads this week, towels, bedding and clothing
  • LIVING AREAS… hubby is planning on doing a deep clean today and tomorrow – I can’t wait until I can do it again (the way I like)
  • KITCHEN… pretty clean
  • STUDIO… is mainly storage these days so nothing going on there
  • YARD… nothing much after the weekend storms, just too wet to do anything
  • BLOG… some recipe updating, future post planning and holiday post planning

CURRENTLY READING & TELEVISION / DVR

  • BIG BANG THEORY, YOUNG SHELDON
  • THE GOOD PLACE, AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE, GREAT NEWS
  • MACGYVER, SCORPION, BLINDSPOT, ORVILLE
  • NCIS, NCIS NEW ORLEANS and NCIS LA, CRIMINAL MINDS, S.W.A.T.
  • MADAM SECRETARY, DESIGNATED SURVIVOR, WISDOM OF THE CROWD
  • CHICAGO FIRE, CHICAGO PD, CHICAGO MED
  • BRAVE, VALOR, SEAL TEAM
  • LAW & ORDER SVU, BLUE BLOODS, HAWAII 5-0
  • Z NATION, WALKING DEAD, FLASH, DC LEGENDS, SUPERGIRL
  • THIS IS US, ONCE UPON A TIME, THE GOOD DOCTOR
  • GUY’S GROCERY GAMES, BEAT BOBBY FLAY, BOBBY AND DAMARIS, BAKED IN VERMONT, KIDS BAKING CHAMPIONSHIP, WORST COOKS IN AMERICA
  • WHEN CALLS THE HEART

MENU PLANS FOR THE WEEK

LOL, I get to “switch” diets midweek, but I have to tell you there isn’t much difference between them.  And honestly I’m (well, my body) NOT ready for regular food despite the cravings for it.

SUCCESSFUL RECIPE LINKS FROM LAST WEEK

HEALTH & BEAUTY TIPS

HOMEMAKING/COOKING TIP

ON MY MIND / THINGS THAT ARE MAKING ME HAPPY

On Christmas eve at a party we go to every year that has tons of scrumptious food that I couldn’t eat, a friend asked me if I had hit the depression yet. I just stared at her for a few minutes and thought what are you talking about?  Then it hit me, what I’ve been feeling is a form of PTSD, especially after the hospital stay from hell starting with a recovery nurse that deserves to be fired – I did speak with the patient liaison about the major mistreatment that occurred.  But, the reality is MY life was completely upended while I slept through surgery. Decisions were made I was not a party to and when I woke up from surgery and was told EVERYTHING about how I lived would be completely different for the rest of my life I have to admit I didn’t even know how to process that information.

Fortunately, I refuse to get depressed.  There are some bad days, but I am coping and will continue to think positively, take it as a challenge and adjust.

FAVORITE PHOTO FROM THE CAMERA

Hubby set Ava up to guard the stockings on Christmas Eve. 😀

INSPIRATION

Be sure to link up with Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom for Happy homemaker Monday, Terri at Darling Downs Diaries and with Laura at I’m an Organizing Junkie for Menu Plan Monday.

DAY 25 ~ BLOGMAS 2017 ~ MERRY CHRISTMAS

From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics.

It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of their church. Each element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality which the children could remember.

  • The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.
  • Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.
  • Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.
  • The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.
  • The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.
  • The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.
  • Seven swans a-swimming represented the seven fold gifts of the Holy Spirit–Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy.
  • The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.
  • Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit–Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control.
  • The ten lords a-leaping were the ten commandments.
  • The eleven pipers piping stood for the eleven faithful disciples.
  • The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles’ Creed.

Merry (Twelve Days of) Christmas Everyone – and, remember, the Twelve Days of Christmas are the 12 days following December 25th. The Christmas Season runs until Epiphany, January 6.

CHRISTMAS COUNTRY CHURCHES

These are 2 of my favorite country churches from Michigan.  I took these pictures in 2011 at Christmas time ON THE SAME DAY. That’s how fast weather changes with lake effect snow!



I JUST LOVE OLD CHURCHES! The bottom 3 pictures was a REALLY neat stone church in the middle of town.



But, my favorite country church is from a teeny tiny little town called Mansfield. It was once a growing little town until there was a mine disaster.  Now all that exists is the monument to the disaster, the church and a few random homes.

DAY 24 ~ BLOGMAS 2017 – CHRISTMAS EVE – DO YOU KNOW WHERE SANTA IS?

THE HOLIDAY SEASON…

Usually the holiday season is an endless list of tasks and errands.  Christmas Eve is usually at our house and then Christmas Day many times too.  The last several years though the holiday season has been quiet, many times too quiet.  This year in particular was way too quiet.
Personally, I love the hustle and bustle of the holidays.  I’m a list writer and as a Virgo usually have my presents bought early and the Christmas cards ready to mail by Thanksgiving, many times they are even hand made.  Having all this done and ready made it possible for me to go to the malls, get a nice cup of coffee and just watch other people hustle and bustle.  Then I would go home and cook and bake and then bake some more!  I MISS that here!
I learned much of this from my folks.  My folks would have the majority of their shopping done before Thanksgiving and then because of their hectic schedules dad would sit me down with all the gifts, a card table, wrapping paper, tape, bows and tags on the day after Thanksgiving and that was where I would spend the Thanksgiving weekend watching Christmas movies, eating leftover turkey sandwhiches and wrapping gifts.  When the gifts were done, I would start on the Christmas cards.  Now this wasn’t an abuse of child labor laws, it was how I earned a chunk of money for my own Christmas shopping.  And dad was a generous employer.
Christmas Eve was spent at our house with the immediate extended family (grams and gramps, aunts, uncles and cousins and many times neighbors too). We would do a big buffet and then open all our gifts to each other and have a party.  We’d go to sleep happy and sated while waiting for Santa and then start Christmas day with stockings and brunch.  By afternoon the turkey and ham were smelling great and we were ready to start all over.  Oh it was the same bunch of people, but we would add a great aunt and uncle. Looney Louise, (okay we didn’t call her looney to her face, but it is what made her such fun) made us cornflake wreaths with red hots and fudge!  All us cousins would sit on the front porch waiting for them and for our wreaths!  It wouldn’t have been Christmas without them!
Looney Louise years before she made us our wreaths!
As always I’m looking forward to the next holiday season just after this one ends, but knowing that the next one will be spent around family makes it already more special.
It’s Christmas Eve and Santa Claus is coming to town tonight. If you have kids, or are just a big kid at heart, you can track Santa’s progress as he travels around the world on NORAD.

Merry Christmas everyone!

May Christmas bring you joy, happiness
and everything else you deserve!

DAY 22 ~ BLOGMAS ~ CHRISTMAS TREE AND DECORATIONS

How I decorate each year changes based on my mood, weather, etc… so it will never be the same twice! EXCEPT for the 1st picture the other pictures are Christmases past.  The remodel is almost done and at least we have a FULL tree this year.  As for us, we PREFER real trees, but last year we decided with the remodel to break down and buy an artificial tree.  SHHH don’t tell hubby, but I really love this tree. Next year we’ll have a real tree again.  We figure we actually saved money and can donate the tree to the women’s shelter too.

This is actually the back of the tree, but it was the only way I could get a picture of the whole tree with the star.
Snowman Family then above and snowman family now below.

We made candle yule logs for Advent craft night at church one year and they were a HUGE success and soooooooo easy to do.

These are a few of my new favorites.

My cousin that passed away in 2014 made this ornament for me.  From now it will always be hung by my shooting stars in her honor. That is after I get done being mad at her for leaving me this mess to deal with.
And our handmade ornament by the Design Chick.

LEBKUCHEN aka GINGER COOKIES

Do you have a recipe that calls for candied citron? Don’t know what it is? Well, it’s not candied lemon or grapefruit peel. Citron is an actual semitropical fruit that’s similar to a lemon but with a thicker skin. To make candied citron, the citron is blanched in water, boiled in sugar syrup, and dried. It lends a mild floral note to fruitcakes and other such confections. While I love candied citron know that you have other options. Each shines in a different way, but they can pretty much be used interchangeably in most recipes, so if you happen to have one kind on hand, try that in your recipe.

Photography by: Chelsea Cavanaugh

ORANGE SLICES (Top Left) – They’re great as a decorative flourish on top of cupcakes.
CITRON PEEL (Top Right) – Though the pulp is sour, the candied peel is perfect for baking into stollen or stirring into granola.
LEMON RIND (Middle Left) – Finely chop it and mix into muffins and pancakes for a bright flavor.
ORANGE PEEL (Middle Right) – Dip pieces in dark chocolate and serve as an after-dinner treat.
CITRON SLICES (Bottom Left) – Serve thin slices as part of a holiday cheese plate.
CLEMENTINE SLICES (Bottom Right) – You can also garnish cocktails with these.

Candied citrus is available at specialty stores (especially around the holidays) and online at stores like junetaylorjams.com, but you can also easily make your own at home. Either way, store it in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to a month.

LEBKUCHEN
Traditional Lebkuchen German Christmas cookies are a form of gingerbread descended from medieval times and taste spicy and nutty in flavor. They were typically a combination of spices, honey, and dried bread crumbs. They are often cut into “sugar” cookie shapes and ornately decorated. I made a super “simple” version this year for hubby since I am unable to make neighbor plates and do my normal holiday baking.

  • Prep time: 15 minutes.
  • Cook time: 10-12 minutes.
  • Makes 12 servings.

COOKIES
½ cup honey
½ cup molasses
¾ cup brown sugar
1 LARGE egg
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2¾ cup flour, plus flour for dusting
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon each ground cinnamon, cloves, allspice & nutmeg
⅓ cup candied citron, diced (I prefer candied ginger)
⅓ cup hazelnuts, finely chopped

ICING
1 cup sugar
¼ cup milk
½ teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
½ cup confectioners’ sugar

GARNISH
Sliced almonds
Candied citron or ginger
Melted chocolate

  • In a medium saucepan, bring honey and molasses to a boil.
  • Remove from heat; stir in brown sugar, egg, lemon juice and zest.
  • In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda and all spices, and stir in molasses mix, citron and hazelnuts. Cover; chill overnight.

 

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • On a floured, hard surface roll out a small amount of chilled dough to ¼-inch thick. If dough is sticky, use more flour.
  • Cut dough in 2-inch rounds or shapes; transfer to prepared baking sheets.
  • Bake 10-12 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make icing by heating sugar and liquids in a small saucepan (do not boil).
  • Remove from heat; stir in confectioners’ sugar. If icing crystallizes, reheat and add a touch of water or milk.
  • Transfer cookies to rack and while still hot, brush with icing and decorate with almonds, citron, ginger or sprinkles; or, let cool completely and drizzle with melted chocolate.
  • Store in sealed container.

DAY 21 – BLOGMAS 2017 – OPEN OPEN OPEN

When do you open presents? This category has changed a lot over the years.  My family traditions of a BIG Christmas eve from when I was a kid carried on through college, but as we got older and got families of our own, parents passed on, blended families (with their own traditions) were formed, etc… getting together for both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day became harder and harder to do.  Eventually for me it became more and more Christmas morning only which is fine by me.

DAY 20 – BLOGMAS 2017 – FAVORITE CHRISTMAS TRADITION

This is a really hard category for me.  I LOVE Christmas!  There is nothing about this season I don’t like short of maybe crowds of rude people and Black Friday.  Being a military family on a tight budget I’ve always started shopping early (like in January) to work everything we want to do into our tight budget.
If I had to pick just one though, it would be putting up the tree as a family while eating leftover turkey (from Thanksgiving) sandwiches.  We usually put our tree up just after Thanksgiving and leave it until Kings Day, the Epiphany on January 6th.  For that reason we like to go cut our own tree so it’s fresh and lasts the entire time.  I use an apple cider/sugar mix that keeps the sap from forming on the cut area and keep the water cool and full.
When I was a kid we did a BIG family get together with a buffet of food and opening our family presents on Christmas Eve.  I just saw a few of my cousins and we were reminiscing about some of those holidays and LOL how horrible our wardrobes were back then.

Thankfully, I’m not in the bottom picture because I remember what I was wearing! But I love my brother’s plaid pants and Monica’s floral blouse. If you don’t hear from me for a few days I’m Sure it’s because one them found me LOL.

Then on Christmas Day we did Christmas morning and “Santa” with just the immediate family and then we would do a BIG turkey with all the trimmings including my dad’s stuffing and giblet gravy with all the family as well as extended family, which included crazy Aunt Louise and Uncle Herb. I replicated dad’s stuffing recipe a few years ago (Oatnut Sourdough Herb Dressing) and that is now a MUST for the Christmas meal whatever the meat is.

DAY 20 – BLOGMAS 2017 – FAVORITE TRADITION

This is a really hard category for me.  I LOVE Christmas!  There is nothing about this season I don’t like short of maybe crowds of rude people and Black Friday.  Being a military family on a tight budget I’ve always started shopping early to work everything we want to do into our tight budget.
If I had to pick just one though, it would be putting up the tree as a family while eating leftover turkey (from Thanksgiving) sandwiches.  We usually put our tree up just after Thanksgiving and leave it until Kings Day, the Epiphany on January 6th.  For that reason we like to go cut our own tree so it’s fresh and will last the entire time.  I use an apple cider/sugar mix that keeps the sap from forming on the cut area and keep the water cool and full.
When I was a kid, we did a BIG family get together with a buffet of food and opening our family presents on Christmas Eve.  I just saw a few of my cousins and we were reminiscing about some of those holidays and LOL how horrible our wardrobes were back then.
Thankfully, I’m not in the bottom picture, because I remember what I was wearing! But, I love my brother’s plaid pants and Monica’s floral blouse. If you don’t hear from me for a few days I’m Sure it’s because one them found me LOL.

Then on Christmas Day we did Christmas morning and “Santa” with just the immediate family and then we would do a BIG turkey with all the trimmings including my dad’s stuffing and giblet gravy with ALL the family as well as extended family, which included crazy Aunt Louise (the corn flake wreath maker) and Uncle Herb who always brought us each a silver dollar.