Thursday, September 30, 2010

Recipe of the Week: Morning Glory Muffins

We affectionately call them "Everything-but-the-Kitchen-Sink-Muffins."
I usually put raisins in them, but since I was depleted in my stock, we substituted with Craisins, which were a mighty fine substitute.
These take a little time to put together since you have to peel and dice/shred the apple and shred the carrot. But then it makes a huge batch that freezes beautifully and will be good for several meals. I froze half of this batch and plan to get them out today to have with some soup.
Morning Glory Muffins
4 cups flour (I use 1/2 whole wheat)
2 1/2 cups sugar
4 tsp. baking soda
4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
2 cups oil (I use a bit less)
6 eggs, lightly beaten
4 tsp. vanilla extract
4 cups grated, peeled apples
1 cup raisins
1 cup flaked coconut
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup chopped walnuts
In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. In a separate bowl mix the oil, eggs, and vanilla. Stir into the dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in the apples, raisins, coconut, carrots, and nuts. Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center of the muffin comes out clean. Makes 3 dozen.
Samuel approves. :)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Fun week with Joy

Well, I'm back and rested, and even caught up around the house. I/we had a very good week. I spent it with Joy and her family, while the insurance man enjoyed a few days with his parents in Burns, before coming to pick me up. We spent our days with 2-year-old Macy, scrap booking, watching cartoons, and going to kid events. That mainly consisted of Kendall's games. She is playing 8th grade volleyball for her school, fall softball with a Vancouver team, and soccer. Each game was fun, and I was so glad to get to see her play.

We did manage to slip away one day by ourselves, and went to Bonneville Hot Springs Resort on the Columbia River. After a relaxing morning in the spa and around the pool, we enjoyed a quiet lunch together. On the way home we drove straight to an Outlet Mall, where we did some shopping for Macy's birthday, and a few extras : )
Kory getting a kiss from Macy at a volleyball game!

Our little girl turned three last Saturday, and Joy had a big family barbecue and party. These three years have just flown by, and it was special to spend the week with her.

Kendall is getting so tall now too. She is about to turn 14, and is already for school in the photo. I have three lovely granddaughters in this household, and am enjoying all of them! It was truly a great week.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Sweetness From My Son

Someone found a heart-shaped rock and turned it into sweetness for his mom. :) Doesn't that just brighten your day? It did mine.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Evidence Not Seen

A friend recommended this book to me and loaned it. It took me a while to get to it, but I have been very blessed by it, now that I have taken it up. It's a missionary biography with an unusual turn of events, as she ends up in a Japanese prisoner of war camp. It's very moving and convicting to read her humble account of the circumstances she endured, God's presence and sustenance for her, and her faithful, godly responses to the crushing difficulties she faced.
Reading something like this is a marvelous tonic for the self-centered way we tend to view our lives. Just what I've needed.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Recipe of the Week: Buried Cherry Cookies

I recently made several dozen cookies for a wedding and I thought I'd post the recipe for this delightful, fool-proof cookie.There's three steps: 1) Make the chocolate cookie dough in mixer and roll into small balls.
2) Push a maraschino cherry into the center of each ball.
3) Spoon on a teaspoon of frosting to cover the cherry.

Aren't they pretty?

I think they might be a bit prettier before they are baked, but the final, baked cookie is a lovely reward.

What I liked about this recipe: 1) The dough was seriously easy to roll. So many recipes ask you to do something that is near to impossible. This dough is nice and stiff and dry, not sticky. Easy.
2) The frosting is 2 ingredients. Even though there is dirtied dishes involved in putting these together, overall I think they are easy to do.
3) They're special. I think they make a nice special occasion cookie. I love the hidden fruit in the center.
Recipe: Buried Cherry Cookies (From the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book)
1 10 oz. jar maraschino cherries (42-48)
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 egg
11/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 6 oz. package (1 cup) semisweet chocolate pieces
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1. Drain cherries, reserving juice. Halve any large cherries. In a medium mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add the sugar, baking powder, baking soda and 1/4 tsp. salt. Beat until combined, scraping sides of the bowl. Beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in cocoa powder and as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in remaining flour.
2. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place balls about 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Press your thumb into the center of each ball. Place a cherry in each center.
3. For frosting, in a small saucepan combine chocolate pieces and sweetened condensed milk. Cook and stir over low heat until the chocolate is melted. Stir in 4 teaspoons reserved cherry juice. Spoon 1 teaspoon frosting over each cherry, spreading to cover. (Frosting may be thinned with additional cherry juice if necessary.)
4. Bake in a 350 degree oven 10 minutes or until the edges are firm. Cool 1 minute on cookie sheet. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Makes 42-48 cookies.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Last of the glads and dahlias

One last bouquet before rain and frost in the garden.
I will be visiting Joy and her family next week, so Julie will add a few posts. Have a great week!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A New Shelf

When my friend Nancy was over for the week-end, we decided to go and visit a new/old vintage store in my neighborhood. We had a great morning, poking around in the small space and making delightful discoveries. I found the above shelf amongst the clutter and found that it wasn't priced. I took it to the front counter, and the lady thought about it for a moment, then asked me if $6 sounded OK. I said yes, $6 sounded really good to me. I have never been in any specialty shops that only wanted $6 for anything. So my new shelf of roses came home, I found a lonely spot that needed it, and the insurance man put it up securely. A very good match.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Recipe of the Week: A Very Happy Daughter

I set a date with Amelia to finally do our first recipe from her own cookbook. We planned for Saturday and she picked Snowball Cupcakes.
Putting in the muffin papers. She loved this job.

Mixing dry ingredients.

Watching the mixer go round and round.

Later that afternoon...frosting...

...sprinkling coconut...

...and sprinkling sprinkles. Another favorite job of hers. :)

I haven't seen her so happy in a while. She proudly served them to "all the boys" after dinner for our Sabbath feast. Happy daughter.
I'm remiss in posting an actual recipe for last week. I'll be posting one in the next couple of days.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Gathering of Believers

We've been hosting again...another group from our church. As we sat around visiting after a wonderful spaghetti dinner last night, we realized how diverse our group was. Included in our group: one German, one Kenyan, one raised in Long Island, one raised in Mississippi, one a Navy child, growing up all over the world, two from northern Washington State and three from Oregon. We all had one thing in common: so great a salvation in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We got to wondering how so many from so many places could all end up in one room together on a fall evening in Bend, Oregon. Only by the grace and hand of God!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


And the winner of the 'Name That Dog' contest is: Calvin Jones!
Calvin's name for Doris's new puppy was JUNIOR.
Doris tried out all the guesses on the pup and the one he liked and responded to was Junior, so Junior he is.
By the way, Junior is growing by leaps and bounds.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Recipe of the Week- Bean Dip

For our staff party I fixed a couple of appetizers to enjoy while visiting and waiting for everyone to arrive. I tried out a new bean dip that is served hot, and it got rave reviews. So I thought that I would share that recipe this week, for those of you waiting for a good bean dip to serve with chips. I bought two really hot chili's (that did not get cut open) to put on top for color. The actual dip is mild.

One of our group can not have cheese, so I fixed a fresh guacamole dip for her, and served the blue and yellow corn chips along with some fresh tomatoes from our garden.

For one of our main courses, I made up a lasagna. I haven't made this in many years, but it was fun to do again and really hit the spot. I thought of my older daughter Joy, who always used to LOVE lasagna. When I told her I fixed a pan of it this week, she asked me to make one for her when I go to spend a week with her in September. So...I will be having some more wonderful tastiness.

Hot Bean Dip

1- 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 or 2- 16 ounce cans, refried beans
1- 8 ounce package shredded cheddar
1/2 package or recipe taco seasoning mix cheese
1 can chopped mild green chili's
1- 8 ounce pkg shredded monterey jack cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a medium bowl, blend the cream cheese and sour cream. Mix in the refried beans, taco seasoning, parsley, green onion, 1/2 of the cheeses. Transfer the mixture to an 8x12 baking pan. Top with remaining cheddar and monterey jack cheeses.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven 20-30 minutes, until the cheese is slightly browned and bubbly.

Serve and enjoy!

Have a wonderful Labor Day week-end, and enjoy the last of summer days.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Dahlia Time

Here I go with another flower post...but oh how I do love the flowers in my garden! Right now the glads are starting and the dahlia's are coming on strong. Each season during the flowering period, I see another kind of flower and think...that one is my favorite! I obviously have a lot of favorites. One of my long standing favorites is the dahlia. Partly because they are difficult to grow here, and so I put in more effort, but am so wonderfully rewarded.
Each and every bloom is an amazing work of God's creation.

We are entertaining again tonight, and hosting the staff and crew from the insurance man's office. It's a farewell to his partner that had to retire due to health issues, and a hello to a new partner. All I had to do for the centerpiece this week was to walk out into the dahlia garden, cut a few and add a few large daisies and baby's breath left over from last week. The dahlia above looks red, but it is actually a beautiful shade of purple-ish rose. It's called 'Fremont's Memory'.

One of the other sides of the bouquet....featuring 'Margaret Ellen'.

and the final side, featuring 'Lady Liberty' a fabulous white dahlia. What a great almost looks lit from within. Maybe it is?