Saturday, December 27, 2008

Flitch Recipe

Since several people have asked for it, and a few folks have stumbled across my site looking for the recipe for flitch, I thought I'd share it with you here.

Flitch
1 small white potato, boiled and cooled
1 box of powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla flavoring
Creamy peanut butter (You can also use Nutella hazelnut spread)

Place potato in med bowl; remove skin, mash and add vanilla. Mix in enough powdered sugar to make firm dough. (It will be watery at first...so use plenty of powdered sugar). Roll dough out onto waxed paper sprinkled with powdered sugar. It is a good idea to place another piece of waxed paper between the dough and the rolling pin. Place rolled out dough, sandwiched between waxed paper, in the freezer for 10-15 minutes so that it's easier to work with. Carefully remove the top piece of waxed paper and spread peanut butter onto dough. Next, roll up like a jelly roll. Wrap roll with waxed paper and freeze or refrigerate for at least one hour before slicing. Note: This candy is extremely sweet. It can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer for several days.

Flitch is very rich, like fudge. My husband showed me how to make this not long after we married. So I give him the credit as his family in Pennsylvania made it a lot on Christmas, but of course you can make it anytime. Hope you enjoy this.

Christmas 08


I hope you all had a great Christmas holiday. We did. I felt like it was too short, but we enjoyed the time we had. We had planned to be at my parents' house from Christmas day until Saturday so that we could visit with other relatives. But Friday morning, Matthew woke real early whining, "Mom...I don't feel good." I said, "Do you feel like you are going to throw up?" He said, "Yeah." So off to the bathroom we went, and this went on for several hours. We finally decided to go home, in case he needed a trip to the doctor. We had started him on a stronger dose of his ADD meds on Christmas Eve, and the first day, although quieter, he was fine, except that I noticed he had an extremely difficult time going to sleep. And it wasn't just because Santa was coming. The next day at my parents' house, my dad commented about how his eyes were so fixed. He would look at you and barely blink, almost zombie-like. Well, that evening, he again had a terrible time going to sleep. Then the vomiting started early morning. I wasn't positive it was the meds. I mean, this time of year, it could be stomach flu or virus. So we left to come home. About a half hour into our three hour drive back, we stopped and got him a ginger-ale, which was his first by the way. He LOVED it. (I've never seen a kid get so excited about a drink!) He never vomited again, and he even ate a 3-inch sub for lunch. By 1 PM, we couldn't even tell he had been sick. So we deduced it was the meds. I didn't give him any meds yesterday or today, so that his little body can begin to feel normal again. Tomorrow I'll start him back on his old dose. I hate having to give him any drugs. Poor thing! But this medicine has helped him focus so much better at school this year!
Okay...back to Christmas. Ed took the trash to the recycling/dump this morning, and he said we had 17 bags of garbage! Geez! Matthew and Jonathan were happy with everything Santa brought, and my hubby got me a new lens for my camera, a 55-250 mm telephoto lens. It takes great photos. See below for some I took on Christmas Day. The best part of Christmas was celebrating Christ's birthday and sharing the great food and laughs with family. And I plan to enjoy these last few days of the kids' break from school. Hope you enjoy your break as well.


Kim's Grandparents
Andy, Kim's parents' schnauzer
Thank you hugs for Grandpa and Grandma

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Events

I mentioned in my last post that we were going to the Mark Harris Family Christmas concert. Let me tell you, it was everything I thought it would be and then some! Mark Harris is such a talented man, and he's a nice guy to boot. The event was held at a local church where they set up a room with tables, covered with table cloths and slices of pie at each setting. We had pie, coffee or tea as we listened to Mark perform songs not only from his latest Christmas EP, but also from when he was a part of 4 Him. They only sold 500 tickets so as to keep the atmosphere small and cozy. After the concert, we got in line, bought 3 CD's, and then we jumped into another line to meet him. Below is a photo Ed took of me and the boys with Mark Harris. And if you're listening to my playlist, scroll down to hear one of his songs. What a great night!

Last night, we had our small group's Christmas party at our house. We had a great time. We ate festive finger foods, had a birthday cake for Jesus, had a small white elephant exchange, and finally played Christmas Pictionary. What a great time! Unfortunately, I never once pulled my camera out! Sorry!
Well, here's hoping you've gotten all of your shopping done and can sit back and enjoy your families this week! Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas traditions


I can't believe there are only 6 more days until Christmas because I STILL have some shopping to do. I'm not done with hubby's yet, and there are a couple of little last minute things I need to pick up.
Yesterday, I submitted a recipe to our favorite radio station, WAFJ. They are doing a recipe "swap" on their morning page. I submitted my husband's family recipe for Flitch, or "potato candy." The DJ, John Bryant, E-mailed me and asked if he could call and talk about it while taping to get it on air. So if you were listening around 6:23 this morning, you heard the interview. It was fun! Ed is gone now, delivering a batch to the DJ's.
The flitch got me thinking about all of our Christmas traditions. Here are a few of ours.
  • Put up the Christmas tree the weekend after Thanksgiving

  • Visit a live nativity

  • Buy a new ornament for the kids (which they will take with them as adults), and one for Ed and me.

  • Make flitch

  • Send Christmas cards with photos and a letter

  • Place the smaller nativity scene on the coffee table in the living room and the large one in the front yard

  • Open presents that are not from Santa on Christmas Eve

  • Attend Christmas Eve service at church

  • On Christmas morning, open presents from Santa, eat breakfast, and head to my parents' house, where we eat lunch and open more presents

  • Host our "Life Group's" Christmas party

  • Host our church's scrapbooking Christmas Crop

  • Leave milk and cookies for Santa

Usually, I attend the ladies' ornament party at church, but this year, Jonathan's band concert was the same night. And usually, we bake and decorate sugar cookies, but this year, we'll probably not do that, since none of us need the extra calories....not even Santa! I think it's okay to skip some traditions and add a new one or two once in a while. It keeps things fresh and interesting! Well, I'm off to get ready for another busy day. After some shopping, we are attending the Mark Harris Family Christmas concert tonight. Should be a lot of fun! Hope you all have a Christ filled, blessed weekend!

Oh..and the tree doodles at the top are by Stephanie at Homegrown Hospitality.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Need another gift idea?

Tuesday, I went to another mall. Gasp! While I was there, I picked up this little book.

As a teacher, I thought it had some great ideas; never mind that they've been around quite a while. This has some cool mnemonics in it and is a wonderful book to share with your older kids. I highly reccomend you check it out!
On the way home, I was noticing all of the Christmas decorations in the yards I passed. I am of the opinion that in some cases, less is more. If we're talking those holiday inflatables, less is definitely more! Geeez...when they are deflated, it looks like trash has blown in your yard. Okay...if you have these inflatables in your yard, I hope you are not offended, and that your day is off to a good start anyway!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Random holiday stuff

Whew! Time flies when you're busy, doesn't it? I just finished sending out 30+ Christmas cards. And let me tell you. I wish I would've had this tip beforehand. On Becky Higgins' blog, she said her husband sealed their envelopes by using a wet foam craft brush. What a great idea!
I also just finished wrapping and bagging 5 teacher and 2 therapist gifts. I would like to think I know what teachers like, since I taught for 8 + years. And I would like to think I know what they don't like. If I were still in the classroom, I would not want a hundred more "apple" themed gifts. Those are great for first year teachers, but after that, it gets kind of old...unless it's something really unique and cool. This year, I went simple, since I had so many gifts to get. For my kids' teachers, I got cool Christmas socks, a cool, red jingle bell ornament from Hallmark and some M&M's (repackaged). The M&M idea and the tags I used with it came from Stacy Julian's blog and Big Picture Scrapbooking. Aren't they the cutest things?
On Sunday, we went to the mall. Believe it or not, we go there only once or twice per year. It's just not our thing! But while there, Matthew enjoyed the Christmas decorations and seeing Santa. See his village... Merry Stuff, huh?
After the mall, we went to the Jackson Christmas parade. It was definitely parade weather...cloudy and cold! (You'd never know it now. The highs have been in the upper 70's this week here...Yikes!) Here are some highlights from the parade.

Below is the middle school band. The director told Jonathan as he passed, "You'll be here next year."

I loved this Subway entry. They had "elves" passing out coupons for free yummy Subway cookies and tossing plastic Subway water bottles to the crowd.
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And below is ole Santa himself atop one of the fire engines! Ho! Ho! Ho!

And here's the real reason my kids love to go to this parade every year. Look at the amount of candy...and that was just HALF! One lady tossed this cute Santa doll (above) to Matthew.

In the midst of all of this holiday hustle and bustle, let's remember why we celebrate Christmas. The photo below was taken at an event called "Return to Bethlehem" put on by Grace United Methodist Church in North Augusta, SC. It's a great way to "show" your kids the story.
The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"—which means, "God with us." Matthew 1:23

Thursday, December 11, 2008

OT


Looks like fun, huh? This is what Matthew gets to do every Wednesday. Matthew has a condition called Sensory Processing Disorder, part of the developmental problems he has had, along with ADD. This obstacle course is part of his weekly therapy. It builds self-confidence, builds strength and helps improve muscle tone, as well as other benefits. The lady in the photos is a student therapist, but he works weekly with a wonderful occupational therapist who we are so blessed to have met! Here is an excellent link if you are interested in learning more about SPD and its treatment.



Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Sounds of the Season

It's getting busy around here, so if I don't post as often, I'm sure you'll understand why...as you are probably in the same boat!
Last night we attended Jonathan's first band concert. We were so proud! He plays trombone in first year "Beginner" band. They played only 3 songs, but I thought I would share one with you here to help get you into the holiday spirit (that is, if you aren't already)! I didn't take a better camcorder with me, so this was shot with my Olympus point and shoot digital camera. I apologize in advance for the picture quality and the lack of skill of the videographer! I hope you enjoy anyway. If you are wondering where Jonathan is in the video, the band director is standing directly in front of him, blocking my line of sight. Oh well...next time, I'll know where to sit! This, by the way, is my first time posting my own video on my blog! I love it! OH....and be sure to pause my playlist so you can hear!

video

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Counting Down to Christmas




Sorry about the lag in posting. We had a wonderful time visiting with family during Thanksgiving. Above are some of my favorite photos from the holiday weekend. I took many more, but there's not enough room here! Jonathan enjoyed playing his trombone with his cousin, Sam, who plays the saxaphone. They sounded great together! On Thursday night, my husband did his yearly thing of camping out in front of a store so as to not miss the bargains. This year, we got a great deal on a steam carpet cleaner and some other items that we almost didn't fit in the car for the trip home! LOL! The day after Thanksgiving was my traditional shopping day with my mom. We shopped at Gardenridge, Walmart, Family Christian Stores and Kohls. We had a great time together. But I have to say, I am FAR from being done with my Christmas shopping. When we got home, we actually got unpacked and managed to get the Christmas tree up on Sunday night.
Also, here are some photos of trimming the tree. Always a lot of fun, and Matthew just gets so excited about helping with the ornaments! We have no "theme tree," as ours is a hodge podge of ornaments with stories behind almost every one.
Oh, and remember several weeks back when I told you about my yard sale find for .50, and I promised I'd show you what I did with it? Well here it is....ready to hang in my dining room!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Giving Thanks

To me, it's easy to be thankful when things are going well. It's a bit more tough when you're going through difficult times....a shrinking economy, loss of a loved one, etc.... Here's what 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says: " give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." That isn't always easy to do, is it?

Psalm 100 says
1.Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth.
2 Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.
3 Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.
5 For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.

Those verses make the importance of thanksgiving pretty obvious. On a personal note, I am thankful for many things, but one thing I'm thankful for in particular this year is that we are going to be celebrating Thanksgiving Day with my Granny Margaret, who is 81 years old. She is still able and wants to cook the Thanksgiving meal for the family. She is awesome, and I thank God that my kids are growing up spending this wonderful holiday with their great-grandmother.
Yesterday, I spent some time with my son's first grade. All the first grade classes had Thanksgiving lunch together. They had all the fixings....turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, green beans, and rolls. The only thing missing was pumpkin pie (but hey...first graders prefer cupcakes--LOL)! I enjoyed spending this time with Matthew. Below are some photos I took (The smiling lady below is my son's teacher! So nice!)

“Each day we are given the gift of 86,400 seconds. Have you used one to say ‘thank you'?" William A. Ward

Friday, November 21, 2008

And the Silver goes to.....


Just had to brag on my boy. First of all, look how tall he's getting! Second, these are pictures from the PACT (Palmetto Achievement Comprehensive Test...I think) Superlative program and reception last night at his school. Jonathan took "Silver" for his achievement on this standardized state test. We're so proud of him! Bless his heart, there were only 2 who took "gold," and Jonathan could've been in that category, but for some reason, half his scores were missing. He scored advanced in Math, but they don't know how he did in writing and Reading. Presumably, he bubbled some identifying information incorrectly. Who knows? We're proud of his accomplishments and hard work anyway! Go Jonathan!

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