Friday, December 31, 2010

Goals for 2011

I don't know about you, but at the beginning of the year, I like to reevaluate my life and decide where I need to tweak things and make improvements. So I thought I would put in my blog the areas of my life where changes need to be made, goals I am setting for myself, areas that need more consistency, etc. Maybe this will inspire and motivate you to do the same. I've heard it said that new year's resolutions go in one year and out the other. Let's not let that happen this year.


I want to create a warm and loving atmosphere in my home. That starts with my attitude. I've been too whiny and complaining of late. I want to begin using kind words, be an encourager, pay attention, and lighten up.

Make a cleaning schedule in an attempt to keep the house in visitor worthy shape in order to avoid the mad rush to get the house clean from top to bottom before holidays and overnight visitors. We did the mad dash several times this year, and it isn't fun.

Get daughter in on this action - she is old enough to be helping her mom and dad keep the home picked up and clean. I am going to make her a chore chart in an attempt to help her help me.

Continue to declutter and give to our favorite local charity. We decluttered quite a bit this year, some left the house, but a lot of it is still in the garage.

So, clean the garage!

Retile entrance from garage into basement. Paint basement bath. Do a little redecorating in there.

Replace toilet in master bathroom. Look for marked down new vanity top for master bath. Ours is showing little cracks in the sink bowl near the drain. I am afraid it may leak. This could be pricey, so I am going to look at local salvage stores for this. We have brushed stainless faucets to be installed but a vanity/sink top should go in first.

Paint master bedroom and bath.

Continue to purge no longer needed or wanted books and sell to McKays for extra dollars.

Sell items on eBay or Craig's list for extra dollars.

Clean and organize master bedroom closet. I've put this off for too long.

Take down outside lamps on front porch and deck and spray paint a nice oil rubbed bronze color.

Paint front door. Touch up outdoor trim paint.

Pressure wash deck and fencing. Stain deck. Plant pretty flowers in my deck planters.

Consider and pray about selling home and downsizing to a home in order to eliminate a house payment.


Consider doing new things together as a family. We really do enjoying sitting on our butts in front of the telly together, but a little variety might be nice!

Institute more family nights - game night, movie night with theme dinners, etc.

Be more consistent with family devotions at meal time. We like taking turns reading from our devotion book at the dinner table.

Sit at the table together as a family for at least one meal a day. We are spending too much time in front of the tv in the den eating our dinner. This is okay on occasion but I do not want it to become a habit.

As a family, we need to eat more healthily and incorporate more fruits and vegetables into our diet. That is my responsibility and I need to be more consistent in this area. I plan our menus and do most of the grocery shopping.

I would like to start baking our own bread. I used to make sourdough bread and it was so good. I could substitute half of the bread flour for whole wheat to make it healthier for us. Bread in the store is getting to be very expensive. Especially, the healthier natural bread.

I want to grow a vegetable garden again this year. I didn't do it in 2010 because I was having so much back trouble in the spring. Homegrown veggies are so good. I really enjoyed my zucchini, green peppers and tomatoes in 2009 and need to do this again. I want to add summer squash, green onions, and leaf lettuce. Maybe even more. We'll see.


I have a goal to get daughter caught up on her school work and I want to be an encourager to her to want to learn and read more for pleasure. I love to read and loved to read when I was her age. In today's age of modern technology, I am finding it hard to "hook" her on reading for fun.

I need to take a more hands on approach to her schooling. I think, as an only child, she finds homeschooling on her laptop to be sorta boring and lonely. I need to be present more and assist her with her lessons.

I have a couple of bible study books I want to do with her this semester. How to Study Your Bible for Kids by Kay Arthur and God What's Your Name by Kay Arthur.


Generally, I need to take my vitamins and exercise more consistently. More vegs and fruits are also needed in my diet. I have a very nice treadmill sitting in my den that makes a nice purse/handbag holder! On those beautiful days, a nice brisk walk could be just what I need. It will lift my spirits as well as exercise my old body!

More consistent time in God's Word and prayer. I read from Genesis through Isaiah this year and then some. But I would like to completely read the Bible from cover to cover this year. Our church has made this a challenge for each of us and they are even going to post our daily readings on Facebook. Isn't that great.

I also have several books with study guides that I would like to read and do. Many of them have to do with women's issues as wives and mothers.

I would like to read more books this year. I have started reading at bedtime while my melatonin kicks in. I was doing crosswords every night but now I am finding reading before sleeping to be quite enjoyable.

On that note, I have been attempting to get to bed earlier and would like to be in bed by 10 or 11 at night. That would allow me a little time to read before going off to the land of Nod. I have set 7:00 a.m. as goal for getting up and starting my day.

I would like to improve my crocheting skills. My favorite teacher moved away. Now I must try to teach myself or find a new friend with crocheting abilities.

I would like to get caught up on my scrap booking. This is fun and I enjoy it. But with hubby being unemployed, printing photos just hasn't been in our budget. I have plenty of scrap booking supplies from my time as a Creative Memories consultant, so that is not a problem budget wise. My craft room also needs some cleaning and organizing.

Psalm 51:10

10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

I'm taking advantage of my leftover ham this week and incorporating it into several of my meals.

Monday, 12/27:

B-Ham and Cheese Muffins

Ham and Cheese Muffins

2 c. self rising flour
½ t. b. soda
1 c. milk
½ c. mayonnaise
½ cup finely chopped cooked ham
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese

In a large bowl, combine flour and baking soda. Combine remaining ingredients; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups 2/3 full. Bake 425 deg. 16-18 minutes or until muffins test done. 1 dozen

L-Minestrone Soup, Cheese and Crackers

Minestrone Soup
8 servings, 1 cup soup and five crackers each

2 cans (14-1/2 oz. each) reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 can (16 oz.) no-salt-added stewed tomatoes, undrained, coarsely chopped
2 cups cooked kidney beans (prepared without salt)
1 pkg. (16 oz.) frozen mixed vegetables
1/4 cup shell macaroni, uncooked
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. dried basil leaves
PREMIUM Unsalted Tops Saltine Crackers
COMBINE all ingredients except crackers in large saucepan. Bring to boil on medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low.

SIMMER 20 min. or until macaroni is tender.

SERVE with the crackers.

D-Freezer Meal- Cavatini, Salad, Texas Toast

Tuesday, 12/28:

B-Ham and Cheese Crescent Pizza, Fruit

Ham and Eggs Crescent Pizza

8 oz. pkg. crescent rolls
¼ c. onion, chopped
1 T margarine, melted
1 c. finely chopped cooked ham
1 c. shredded Swiss cheese
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
½ c. milk
½ t. salt
¼ t. pepper
1 T chopped fresh or frozen chives

Unroll crescent rolls and place in ungreased 13-x 9x2 pan. Press ½ inch up sides to form a crust; seal perforations. Bake 375 degrees for 5 minutes on lower rack of oven; set aside. Cook onions in butter in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring constantly until crisp tender. Stir in ham and mix thoroughly. Spoon mixture over dough. Sprinkle with shredded cheese. Combine eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Pour over cheese. Sprinkle with chopped chives. Bake 350 degrees 25-30 minutes or until set.

L-Leftover soup

D-Gen. Tso Chicken, Asian Rice and Veggies, Egg Rolls

Wednesday, 12/29:

B-Eggs, Sausage, Toast

L-Grilled Cheese, Veggies and Dip

D-Pork Filet (make in crock pot), Mac and Cheese, Green Veggie, Rolls

Thursday, 12/30:


L-Egg Sammies

D-Ham and Broccoli Bake, Salad

Ham and Broccoli Bake

2 cups cooked macaroni
1 1/2 cups blanched broccoli
2 cups cooked ham -- diced
1 can cheddar cheese soup
2 Tablespoons dried onion flakes
1/2 cup water -- (1/2 to 3/4)
1 cup fresh bread crumbs
2 Tablespoons melted butter

Layer macaroni and broccoli in 9 X 13 baking dish. Heat soup with onion flakes and enough water to make the consistency of thick cream. Stir ham; heat through. Pour evenly over macaroni and broccoli. Blend crumbs with butter. Sprinkle over top. Bake at 350 until hot through and brown on top. Serves 4

NOTES--I use whatever kind of soup I have on hand. I mix all the ingredients except the bread crumbs together and put it in a freezer bag. I put the crumbs in a separate bag. Freeze. When ready to use just let it thaw and put it in a baking dish. Put the bread crumbs on top and bake at 350.

Friday, 12/31:

B-One Eyed Sailors, Fried Bologna

L-Leftovers or Sammies

D-LF Spinach Lasagna, Salad, Garlic Bread

Low-fat Spinach Lasagna

2 cups fat free cottage cheese
3 cups reduced fat mozzarella cheese, shredded
½-1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
10 oz. frozen chopped spinach
27 oz. jar spaghetti sauce
¼ cup water
6-9 uncooked lasagna noodles

Mix cottage cheese; mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese in bowl; set aside. Cook spinach according to package directions; drain. Heat spaghetti sauce and water in saucepan; add spinach and simmer 15 minutes. Spread 1/3 in 9 x 13 inch dish. Layer ½ of uncooked noodles, cheese mixture and remaining spinach sauce; repeat layers. Bake covered with foil 325 degrees for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake 15 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. 6-8 servings.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

B-Cinnamon Rolls

L-Freezer Meal - White Chicken Chili, Cornbread

D-Freezer Pizza, Veggies and Dip

Sunday, January 2, 2011

B-Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

L-Mixed Beans, Fried Potatoes and Onions, Fried Cabbage, Cornbread
D-C.O.R.N. (Clean Out Refrigerator Night)

I've already decided to change my menu. I'm going to switch Saturday's lunch with Sunday's lunch and I'm going to add a collard greens recipe that I just found by looking at other menus. Here it is:

Smoked Sausage and Collards


* 1 lb sausage (smoked or kielbasa) cut into coins
* 2 large bunches of collards
* salt and pepper to taste


Rinse the collards three times. Three shalt be the number thou shalt rinse, and the number of the rinsing shall be three. Four shalt thou not rinse, nor either rinse thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then. . .

Sorry, I got carried away. Once the collards have been rinsed tear from the main stem and into bite sized pieces. Discard the tough woody stems.

In a large, non-aluminum pot heat the sausage , covered over medium heat until browned. Add the collards. Cover, stir occasionally until they have reached their desired tenderness. Season to taste.

I like mine with hot sauce.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Master Bedroom update

My retreat is coming right along. I am washing and drying the mattress pad cover and sheets as I type. The room has been completely defuzzed and cleaned. My cat, Tabby, came up and explored. She gave her approval. She especially likes that I put the dust ruffle on the bed. It makes a nice hiding place for her where she can jump out and scare her brother Toby.

My husband was a big help in getting this room "spring" cleaned. I told him we shouldn't wait so long next time to deep clean. But it was really low on our list of priorities. I think if I do a better job of regular cleaning, the deep cleaning won't seem so bad. Now, I haven't gone through all our dresser drawers or closet. I will do that after the holidays and get those all sorted and organized then. You have to eat an elephant one bite at a time.

As soon as the sheets are dry, I'm going upstairs to put the bed all together. I even pulled out my micro suede duvet from the linen closet and put it over the shabby comforter. This will have to do until we have the money to buy a new outfit for the bed. At least it is all clean. The curtains match the duvet and they are nice and clean and look much better without all the dust across the tops of them. Hubby is going to hang my decorative plaques from Southern Living above the headboard tomorrow. I think they will look really good there.

Later today, I am going to finish cleaning the master bathroom. There is not one square inch on the double sink vanity that is clear or clean. I need to toss and put things away just so I can give it and both sinks a good scrubbing. We would like to replace the light above the mirror. We also have to replace our toilet. It's not working, and we have been using our daughter's down the hall. And as I mentioned in an earlier post we have new faucets to install as well. We are going to get to those projects after Christmas.

I will have hubby take a few photos for me and post them this week, as well as photos of our bathroom on the main that I have been promising you, my two or three faithful readers. lol Then in the spring when we paint and clean the carpet you will have a before and after to compare. I wouldn't dare have shown you a photo before this week. No way.

Back to the grindstone.


Sunday, December 19, 2010

Menu for week of December 20th

Monday, December 20

B-Bacon and Egg Pizza

7 ½ oz. can biscuits
3 eggs, beaten
1 T skim milk
1 t. dried onion flakes
¼ cup bacon bits
1 c. shredded reduced fat cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 12 inch pizza pan with buttered Pam. Separate and flatten biscuits onto pan to form a crust.

In medium bowl, combine eggs, milk and onion flakes. Pour evenly over crust, sprinkle bacon and cheese over top. Bake 16-22 minutes until crust is golden and eggs are set.

Let sit 5 min. and cut into 6 wedges.
6 servings, 4 pts. Each, 196 cal., 8 g. fat, 2 g. fiber

L-Soup, Cheese and Crackers

D-FM-Pulled Pork and Beans, Mashed Potatoes, Broccoli Cornbread

Tuesday, December 21

B-Blueberry Mini-Wheats

L-PB&J, Sliced Apple

D-Spaghetti Casserole, Salad

Spaghetti Casserole

(Makes 2 casseroles, 6 servings each)

16 oz. pkg. angel hair pasta
1 ½ pound ground beef (I use ground chicken or turkey)
26 oz. jar spaghetti sauce
2 cans (8 oz. each) tomato sauce
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup sour cream
2 c. shredded Colby-Monterey Jack cheese

Cook pasta. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, over medium heat, cook beef, drain. Stir in spaghetti sauce and tomato sauce. Remove from heat. Drain pasta. Combine soup and sour cream. In two 8 inch square baking dishes, layer half of the meat sauce, pasta, soup mixture and cheese. Repeat layers. Cover and freeze one casserole for up to 3 months. Cover and bake the remaining casserole 350 degrees 55-65 minutes or until cheese is melted.

To use frozen casserole: Thaw in fridge overnight. Remove from fridge, 30 minutes before baking. Bake as directed.

Wednesday, December 22

B-Sausage, Eggs and Toast
D-Hamburger Helper (use ground chicken or turkey), Green Veggie, Rolls

Thursday, December 23

B-Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

L-Soup and Grilled Cheese

D-Pizza night!

Friday, December 24

B-Overnight Crock Pot Oatmeal

Overnight Crock Pot Oatmeal

1 cup steel cut or regular oats (NOT Quick Oats!)
4 cups water
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 TBS butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon

Combine all in crock pot and cook on low for 8 hrs. Serve with milk & cinnamon sugar.

Mom and Dad's for Christmas Eve (taking Sausage and Cheese Balls, Chocolate No Bake Cookies, Red Velvet Cookies)

Saturday, December 25

B-Cinnamon Rolls

Christmas Appetizers, Sausage and Cheese Balls, Mock Brie, Pimiento Cheese Stuffed Celery, Shrimp, Wassail

Christmas Dinner-Ham, Honey Glazed Carrots, Broccoli Casserole, Stouffer's Mac and Cheese, Sister Schubert Rolls, Deviled Eggs, Watergate Salad

Dessert: Chocolate Bread Pudding, Pumpkin or Sweet Potato Pie

Sunday, December 26

B-Pineapple Banana Smoothie, One Eyed Sailors and Fried Ham

Pineapple Banana Smoothie

1 ripe banana
1 c. unsweetened pineapple juice
1 cup milk

Peel banana. Mash well with a fork and put in blender. Add pineapple juice. Blend. Pour in milk and continue to blend for a few seconds or until ingredients are blended. Serves 2

L & D - Leftovers!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Feeling more industrious today.

I felt a little more industrious today. It was warmer. I think it may have reached the 40's today. A heatwave. So off flew the fleece throw and laptop and up the stairs I climbed.

I worked in my bedroom for a few hours today. It's embarrassing, but my dresser was covered in dust bunnies. There were dust bunnies on top, down the sides, underneath and behind the dresser. The dresser was covered with stuff until there was no room for anything else to be piled on. I had taken a ton of mismatched socks up there sometime back and today I finally tried to match them up. Worn out ones were used to dust with and then tossed. I pulled the dresser out and sucked up all those dust bunnies in the back as well. Whew. What a mess. It looks so much nicer now. I can even see myself in the mirror!

I proceeded to the opposite corner of the room and went through a bunch of books. Some are going to be sold, some going to our reference shelf, some I'm keeping, you know, that kind of organizing. Most are still in neat little piles but I'm going to finish that task tomorrow.

A couple more days of defuzzing my room, cleaning the windows, washing the curtains and rehanging them, and then I'm headed to the closet to declutter and clean in there. Then it's on to the bathroom. Hubby is going to replace the toliet in there and our bathroom faucets. We've had the faucets for a while. It's been on the honey-do list but hubby would like my dad's supervision when he replaces them. That means I need to go stay with my mom for the day while my dad comes here and helps hubby. We just haven't gotten around to doing that yet.

Slowly, but surely, my room is starting to look like the retreat it should be. Come spring, we are going to paint it and clean the carpet. I have a set of plaques that I bought from Southern Living that I want to hang above the bed. I've had them so long, I've forgotten what they look like. They are still in the box. I think they are an antique copper look. I also have new towels for the bathroom once it is painted. I've had the towels for a while too. I'm a big planner. I'm just now following through on my plans. lol

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Baby it's cold outside!

We have had single digit temps here in East Tennessee. I'm keeping warm by the fire. I love building fires in our fireplace. Hubby doesn't like it much because he's the one who has to bring in the wood and take out the ashes. But I'm the one who builds the fire.

We have been going to bed earlier and rising earlier just as planned. I have been doing my daily bible reading, but generally the only thing getting done around here the last few days is loading and unloading the dishwasher, hand washing dishes, cooking meals, and doing laundry. It's just been so cold, I haven't wanted to attack any projects. I've mainly been staying under a fleece throw, laptop on my lap, fire in the fireplace and watching the telly. Hubby even did the grocery shopping for me this week. Isn't that nice?

Stay warm.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Something needs to change around here.

I'm talking about my home. You see, my family is not very disciplined. Myself included. So, with a husband out of work for a couple of years, a daughter being homeschooled, me, being a sahm mom, we really don't have a schedule we stick to and it shows. We often run around in our jammmies at all hours of the day, meals are sometimes when we get hungry. Often breakfast is very late, which pushes lunch up into the day and then dinner is at dark forty. Our house seems to be in constant disarray, hence the name of my blog> So something has got to change.

After a family discussion last night, we have decided to institute a bedtime of 11:00, most nights and to wake up at 7:00 most mornings. I was up about 7:30 this morning. It's after nine and hubby is still in bed. So much for that! No, actually he fell yesterday in the street retrieving our mail and is feeling very sore this morning. In any event, we are going to do our best to adhere to this schedule.

I am hoping for my weekdays to look more like this:

7:00 rise and shine
coffee and Bible time
7:30 prepare breakfast
8:00 or so, shower time
8:45 treadmill treading
Then on with my day, laundry, KP duty, general picking up and what housework or project is on my agenda for the day and supervision of homeschooling.
9:00 dd should be dressed and doing her homeschooling by this time.
Later, I will check blogs and email, Facebook and the like. We need to limit our computer time in the house. We seem to go in spurts. Lately, we seem to be online too much. I don't play games, but do visit a lot of blogs and read the news and play with my recipes and menu playing on my laptop. Dd likes the games and has her daddy doing some of them too to benefit her.
We want to eat dinner in the dining room most every night and have family devotions. This month we have been doing Advent readings.
Evenings are generally spent together as a family and lately, watching Christmas programs on TV.
11:00 bedtime

I am hoping the earlier bedtime and rising will motivate us to accomplish more around our house so I can change the name of my blog from "Can't Have Anyone Over Cottage" to "Come on Over!"

How about you? What works for your family?


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Menu for week of December 13th

Monday, December 13

B-Cereal and Toast
D-Hearty Bean Soup and cornbread

Hearty Fiesta Bean Soup

1 - 15 oz can chicken or vegetable broth
1 - 16 oz can fat-free refried beans
1 - 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 - 15.25 oz can corn, drained and rinsed
1 - 10 oz can tomatoes and chilies

Put the broth and refried beans into a soup pot and heat, while whisking together, until the beans have incorporated fully into the broth.
Add the rest of the ingredients and heat, while stirring until the soup is boiling.
Serve with a variety of toppings: fresh cilantro, shredded cheese, light sour cream, or Tabasco.

Tuesday, December 14

D-Freezer Meal-Pizza Pasta Casserole, Salad

Wednesday, December 15

B-Blueberry Oat Muffins
L-Sammies, Veggies and Dip
D-Turkey Burgers and Fries

Thursday, December 16

B-French Toast and Sausage
L-Soup, Cheese and Crackers
D-Mr. Food's Chicken Kiev, Mashed Potatoes, Broccoli and White Cheddar Sauce

Mr. Food's Chicken Kiev

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup butter
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon parsley
1 teaspoon chives
3 tablespoons bread crumbs
Salt, to taste

Flatten the chicken breast pieces inside a plastic bag by pounding. Sprinkle with garlic powder, parsley and chives. Place a pat of butter onto the center of each breast and roll up. Stuff each rolled up breast into a greased muffin tin with the sides neatly tucked into the tin. Sprinkle with salt and bread crumbs. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes. (edited to add that it takes these breasts much longer to cook. I cooked mine, fresh, for 30 minutes and they still needed a lot more time. So check your oven and allow for extra baking time. The breasts were large but I did pound them out but once rolled up and put in the muffin tins, they are very dense. So just remember to allow for that.)

TO FREEZE: Just freeze the chicken in the muffin tin, then pop them out after frozen and into a Ziplock bag. Label, date, seal, and freeze. When ready to cook, put them back into the muffin tins.

TO SERVE: Defrost and continue with the above directions.

Friday, December 17

L-Freezer Pizza, Veggies and Dip
D-Cowboy Bake and Salad

Cowboy Bake

1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 T olive oil
1 lb chicken breast, cubed
1 10.oz can tomatoes
1 C frozen corn kernels
pinch of chili powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 C of your favorite cheese, grated.

For topping:

1 8.5oz package of corn muffin mix

Preheat oven to 350. Coat a 9 inch pie pan with cooking spray. In a large skillet, saute onion and garlic for 2 minutes in oil.

Add chicken and brown, then add tomatoes, corn, chili powder and salt. Cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour into the pie pan.

If serving, same day:

Top with grated cheese. In a mixing bowl, prepare muffin mix according to package. Spread evenly over chicken mixture and bake for 30 minutes.

If freezing:

Reserve cheese in sandwich bag and do not mix corn muffin mix until the day you serve. Label, freeze with baggy of cheese. To serve, thaw, top with mix and cheese and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Saturday, December 18

B-Omelets, Biscuits
D-Freezer Meal- Dump Cranberry Chicken, Green Bean Casserole, Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Sunday, December 19

B-Coffee Cake
L-Tacos (using ground chicken)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Week of December 6th

Monday, December 6

B-French Toast, Sausage
L-Lovely Leftovers
D-Easy ABC Soup, Cheese and Crackers

Easy A-B-C Soup

2 c. cubed, cooked chicken or turkey
2 c. frozen mixed vegetables
1/2 c. chopped celery
1/4 c. chopped onion
1/4 tsp. thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
6 c. chicken broth
1 c. alphabet macaroni (or you can use the little rings if you can't find the A-B-C pasta.)
salt & pepper

In 4 qt. Dutch oven combine chicken or turkey, frozen veg., celery, onion, thyme, bay leaf & broth. Bring to boil. Reduce heat & stir in macaroni. Simmer 12 - 15 minutes or 'til veg & macaroni are tender. Remove bay leaf. Season to taste.

Yield: 10 (1 1/4c.) servings

Tuesday, December 7

B-Eggs, Toast, Fried Bologna
L-Lovely Leftovers
D-Baked Ziti, Salad, Red Lobster Biscuits

Baked Ziti

1 pound dry ziti pasta
1 onion, chopped
1 pound lean ground beef (I use ground chicken)
2 (26 ounce) jars spaghetti sauce
6 ounces Provolone cheese, sliced
1 1/2 cups sour cream
6 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add ziti pasta, and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes; drain.

In a large skillet, brown onion and ground beef over medium heat. Add spaghetti sauce, and simmer 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. Layer as follows: 1/2 of the ziti, Provolone cheese, sour cream, 1/2 sauce mixture, remaining ziti, mozzarella cheese and remaining sauce mixture. Top with grated Parmesan cheese.

Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cheeses are melted. Freezes well, cover with saran wrap then foil. Thaw in refrigerator.

Wednesday, December 8

B-Cinnamon Roll Toaster Strudel
L-Sammmies, Veggies and Dip
D-Pintos, Fried Potatoes, Cornbread

Thursday, December 9

B-One Eyed Sailors, Fried Bologna
D-Nuggets and Fries, veggies and dip

Friday, December 10

B-Cereal and Toast
L-Soup and Sammie or Leftovers
D-Freezer Pizzas, Veggies and dip

Saturday, December 11

L-Soup and Sammies
D-Chicken Noodle Casserole, Corn, Mayo Rolls

Chicken Noodle Casserole
(adapted from a recipe in Mama Dip's Kitchen)

1 package (8-ounces) noodles
4 cups cooked, cubed chicken
1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cream of chicken soup (I use Healthy Request)
1/2 stick butter, melted
2 cups milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4+ cup bread crumbs, mixed evenly with 2 tablespoons melted butter

Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain. Mix noodles with other ingredients, except buttered bread crumbs. Pour into a baking dish (I use a lasagna-size Pyrex) and sprinkle bread crumbs evenly over top.

Bake at 400° for 30 minutes.

Sunday, December 12

B-Snicker Doodle Muffins
L-Chicken Fried Chops, Mashed Potatoes, Italian Green Beans, Macaroni and Cheese, Rolls
D-C.O.R.N. (clean out the refrigerator night)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Why Jesus is Better Than Santa Claus

Why Jesus Is Better Than Santa Claus - Author Unknown

• Santa lives at the North Pole, but Jesus is everywhere.
• Santa rides in a sleigh, but Jesus rides on the wind and walks on the water.
• Santa comes once a year, but Jesus is an ever present help.
• Santa fills your stockings with goodies, but Jesus supplies all your needs.
• Santa comes down your chimney uninvited, but Jesus stands at your door and knocks.
• You have to wait in line to see Santa, but Jesus is as close as the mention of His name.
• Santa lets you sit on his lap, but Jesus lets you rest in His arms.
• Santa doesn't know your name, but Jesus knew our name before we did.
• Santa has a belly like a bowl full of jelly, but Jesus has a heart full of love.
• All Santa can offer is "HO HO HO," but Jesus offers health, help, and hope.
• Santa says, "You better not cry," but Jesus says, "Cast all your cares on me."
• Santa's little helpers make toys, but Jesus makes new life and mends wounded hearts.
• Santa may make you chuckle, but Jesus gives you joy that is your strength.
• While Santa puts gifts under your tree, Jesus became our gift and died on a tree.