1. Beat 6 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup sugar in mixer bowl until well blended. Add corn syrup, egg and vanilla; blend well.
2. Set aside 1/2 cup peanut butter chips for glaze. Place remaining chips and remaining 2 tablespoons butter in medium-microwave safe bowl. Microwave at MEDIUM (50%) 1 minute; stir. If necessary, microwave at MEDIUM 15 seconds at a time, stirring after each heating, until chips are melted and mixture is smooth when stirred. Blend into butter mixture.
3. Stir together flour, baking soda and salt; add peanut butter mixture, blending well. Refrigerate 30 minutes or until firm enough to handle.
4. Remove wrappers from peanut butter cups. Heat oven to 350°F. Shape dough into 42 balls (about 1 inch each); roll in sugar. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.
5. Bake 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown around edges. Cool slightly; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Place peanut butter cup upside-down on center of each cookie so that bottom of peanut butter cup can be seen. (Do not press cup into cookie; heat from cookie will melt peanut butter cup enough so that it will stick when cool.) Cool completely.
6. Place sheet of waxed paper under cooling rack. Prepare PEANUT BUTTER GLAZE. One cookie at a time, completely cover top and sides of peanut butter cup with about 1 teaspoon glaze, allowing glaze to run onto brim of cookie hat Use small knife or spatula to evenly spread glaze on cookie hat brim. (If glaze begins to get too thick to easily use, heat in microwave at MEDIUM several seconds to soften.) Allow glaze to set. Decorate as desired. About 42 cookie hats.
PEANUT BUTTER GLAZE: Place remaining 1/2 cup peanut butter chips (reserved from cookie) and 1/4 cup milk in medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at MEDIUM 1 minute; stir until smooth. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract. Gradually add 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar, beating with whisk until smooth. Add additional milk, 1/2 teaspoon at a time, for desired consistency. 1 cup glaze.
Coconut Marshmallow Nests Recipe
1/2 teaspoon water
3 to 4 drops green or other food color
1-1/4 cups MOUNDS Sweetened Coconut Flakes
2/3 cup miniature marshmallows
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon butter
HERSHEY'S Candy-Coated Milk Chocolate Eggs
1. Combine water and food color in small bowl or small jar with cover or re-sealable plastic bag. Add coconut; toss with fork or shake closed jar or plastic bag until coconut is evenly coated.
2. Microwave marshmallows and butter in medium microwave-safe bowl 30 seconds at HIGH (100%); stir. If necessary, microwave an additional 15 seconds at a time, stirring after each heating, until mixture is melted and smooth when stirred. Stir in tinted coconut.
3. Line tray or cookie sheet with wax paper. Drop coconut mixture in 12 equal mounds onto prepared tray. Shape coconut mounds with moistened fingers into small nest shapes. Cool completely. Allow to air dry until slightly hardened. Fill with milk chocolate eggs. 12 candies.
Every morning I head outside to my garden to fill the doves’ seed dishes and on my way back I pinch off a few bits of parsley from bush that is copiously growing at my back door. The other day I thought to take a peek at just how healthy parsley is.
Parsley is an amazing medicinal herb, is delightful to the taste and agreeable to the stomach. It is a very versatile plant to aid the body in regaining health. The root contains calcium, B-complex vitamins, and iron, all of which nourish the glands that help regulate the uptake of calcium. It is a source of both magnesium and calcium, and especially potassium.
Parsley is high in vitamin A, beta-carotene and vitamin C. As a wholesome organic-food it is also a good choice for bone health with vitamin K (536 mg in an average serving).
Traditionally, parsley has been used for congestion and inflammation of the kidneys and bladder, gravel, stones, and urine retention. The root and leaves are excellent for the liver and spleen. It is also one of the best reliefs for edema, helping when other remedies have failed; parsley is a very reliable diuretic remedy often ignored today. Parsley root and seeds contain ingredients that help produce a pain relieving benefit to relax stiff joints.
Many people use parsley root tea to make stiff and unmanageable fingers work again. Pour a quart of boiling water over a cup of firmly packed fresh parsley and steep for 15 minutes. Strain and then refrigerate.
Parsley works on the gall bladder and will remove gallstones if used properly by taking a pint of the tea daily. Parsley is a specific for the adrenal glands, is powerfully therapeutic for the optic nerves, the brain and the sympathetic nervous system.
Parsley juice is an excellent tonic for the blood vessels, particularly the capillaries and arterioles. But remember that raw parsley juice is a most potent juice and should never be taken alone in quantities of more than one or two ounces at a time unless it is mixed into a sufficient quantity of carrot or other juices. Parsley can help with expelling watery poisons, excess mucus, flatulence (gas), and reducing swollen or enlarged glands.
My healthy living suggestion today is to get yourself a parsley plant, place it where you visit every day and snip off a few pieces to enjoy a healthy refreshing munch or sit back and enjoy a peaceful moment with some parsley tea. warning: It is best to avoid large amounts of parsley if you are pregnant, especially the use of the volatile essential oil.
Recipe For Homemade Parsley Tea
Ingredients: (makes 2 cups of tea)
2 cups water
2 tbsp chopped fresh leaves
2 cups water
1½ tbsp dried parsley
Fresh: Add the freshly chopped leaves to a cup and pour on some boiled water. Let steep (sit) for 5-10 minutes before serving. You can drink the herbs.
Dried: Use like you would loose leaf tea leaves and do the same as above. Or, add the dried herb to a teapot and pour in some boiled water.
Let steep (sit) for about 5-10 minutes before pouring through a strainer.
Spring- the time of renewal, changes, and new beginnings… a time to “relearn” how to have fun in its purest form…
As adults, we often get so caught up in "grown up" business that we can forget how to have pure fun. This isn't the kind of fun that comes from doing a specific kind of activity or being in a specific mood for fun. Rather, this is the fun born from the state of pure being. You see this kind of fun in small children who are so busy being fully present to their lives and in their own bodies that the glow of fun radiates from them just because they are alive: the delight that flashes across the eyes of a child who discovers that water flows with the turn of the tap knob or the squeal of pleasure from a young baby whose tongue is being tickled by cold ice cream; then there's the full, infectious laughter of a child watching the same hat trick for the fiftieth time.
Back when we were children, this experience of pure delight didn't have to come from a heightened, heady event in order for us to feel like our day had been made; and it can be that way for us again - if we are willing to remember and reconnect with that part of ourselves that knows how to be in the flow of fun. You can begin this process by reminiscing on what was fun for you as a child. Think about what caused you to giggle in delight or wriggle in pleasure or burst into endless laughter that you couldn't sit up straight no matter how much you wanted to. Try to spend a few moments with each memory, and really feel what it was like to be in those experiences - allowing that feeling of pure fun to wash over you. It lives, in you - that feeling. It can't be bottled, manufactured, or sold. You just have to call it back up in order to experience it again.
Approach your life today with the knowledge that pure fun isn't something that is given or done to you; rather, it is something that you allow yourself to experience.
this spring ~ begin a new or strengthen an old plan to live each moment as pure delight.
A project this spring… Decoupaged, hand-blown eggs … which are a delicate art craft that are beautiful for Easter and spring decor. They look lovely nesting in a crystal bowl, on a small silver platter, in a faux bird's nest, in a small basket sitting on a coffee table. Get the eggs ready
Use the simple tiny hole on the ends and blow method to empty the eggs. When done, wash them with soapy water and then rinse; try to get the water to run through the egg. Let the eggs dry for a few hours. Don't worry if the whole is a touch too big, you can cover it with your decorations.
You can use a natural dye process to give the eggs a little color or just leave them white (because the decoupage will be the main color and decoration to the eggs). If you want a subtle, base hue, think about putting carrots, blueberries, grass or coffee into boiling water and then straining the contents to tint the eggs. I personally will keep the eggs white or brown so that there is contrast with the images that I apply.
Decoupage the eggs
Decide what images you want on your eggs. Look for small images in magazines. For a seasonal look, choose bunnies, chicks and other spring images or my favorite, spring fabrics. Cut the images out with nicely trimmed edges.
Next, pour four tablespoons of white glue into a bowl and add about a teaspoon of hot water to thin the glue a little. Use as much glue as you need depending on how many eggs you want to make.
Dredge the paper image through the glue, making sure that it is coated on both sides and then apply it to the egg. While it is wet, you can move it around to make sure it is in the right place. Add other images to make a collage on the egg. Because of the shape of the egg, you will have some creases in the image. That's OK. It gives the egg collage some character and texture, I think. Just add more glue and press lightly until it is as flat as it can be.
Composing the collage and pressing down the images will take some patience and time. When you have achieved the look you want, set the egg down on wax paper. While you are working on another egg, keep coming back to the first ones that you made, adding a little more glue and pressing some more. This gets all of the air bubbles that will pop up and coats the egg thoroughly with glue.
When the eggs are covered in images, let them air-dry overnight, turning them from time to time, if possible.
Add some blown-egg bling
To give your eggs some sparkle, spread a little more glue on the entire egg or just on the images and shake on very fine glitter. You can also buy clear glue that has clear fine glitter in it. I used clear, white, very pale pink or very light blue glitter so that it wouldn't overpower the images on the eggs. You also could add some tiny rhinestones here and there for extra egg bling. Use craft glue to adhere them onto the egg. A friend of mine has had some eggs she made over 20 years ago, she says they will last a lifetime.
Why not celebrate with a wonderful ambrosia salad filled with the colors of spring. Everyone knows Peeps, those overwhelmingly sweet little marshmellow critters that appear every Spring in the grocery store. Put your upcoming Easter Peeps to good use this day and make them into a delicious ambrosia salad! For the most colorful results, use yellow and pink Peeps.
Peeps Ambrosia Salad
12 marshmellow Peeps (chicks & bunnies)
2 cans mandarin oranges
2 cans pineapple tidbits
1 jar maraschino cherries
2 chopped bananas
2 C. shredded coconut flakes
1 16-oz tub cottage cheese
1 8-oz tub of Cool Whip or other dessert topping
Dice the Peeps into small pieces. Drain the juices from all the fruit. Mix all ingredients together, and allow to chill in the refrigerator for a few hours. Serve. __________________
where did Peeps come from?
In 1953, the Just Born candy company bought the Rodda Candy
Company. Rodda produced a handmade candy marshmallow chick and Bob Born of Just
Born loved the way the marshmallow chick looked. A year later in 1954, Bob Born
had a machine made that would mass-produce marshmallow chicks, which he
Just Born soon became the largest Marshmallow candy
manufacturer in the world. In the 1960s, Just Born started manufacturing
seasonally shaped Marshmallow Peeps. In the early 1980s, Just Born released the
Marshmallow Peeps Bunny.
Until 1995, Marshmallow Peeps were only produced in pink,
white, and yellow colors. In 1995, lavender colored Peeps were introduced; and
in 1998, blue Peeps were introduced for Easter.
In 1999, vanilla flavored Peeps were produced and a year
later, a strawberry flavor was added. In 2002, a chocolate Peep was introduced.
As spring arrives, our gardens begin to bud and eventually bloom. For hundreds of years, the plants that we grow have been used in health and medicine. Flowers in particular are often connected with a variety of uses. Now that spring is here, keep an eye out for some of these flowers around you - to test your gardening savy... can you name these springtime medicinal flowers. [answer at bottom]
Sunday began this week with St. Patrick ’s Day, then on wednesday we will greet the First Day of Spring, the vernal equinox, Ostara; and finally end with Easter Sunday. Say hello to springtime- with so much going on this week I think I will dedicate it to the celebration of spring- a time for all things to renew.
Spring comes when the earth, coaxed by lengthening days and warmer temperatures, begins to awaken from her winter slumber. She stretches open to receive the rain that gives drink to flower buds and seedlings. She takes a deep breath, and on her exhale the leaves on trees unfurl like tiny flags heralding her revival as baby animals tumble forth, trumpeting the good news to all who will listen. Rebirth and repopulation fill the void of winter with flurry and fury as what appeared to be gone forever comes into being once again. Even though it happens this way every year, we stand in awe, our insides trembling sweetly like the legs of a new foal as we too are reborn.
This is when speak without thinking, say yes to things we would normally refuse. It becomes more difficult to say no when the whole world around us appears to be an astounding affirmation of the resilience, richness, and plain, perfect beauty of life. We may find ourselves feeling several years younger and 10 pounds lighter without changing a thing. We may feel the urge to cleanse our bodies with a new pattern of eating, clearing our kitchens of cold-weather comfort foods and filling them instead with lighter fare and fresh fruits and vegetables. We may clear our closets of old clothes or cut our hair to express a new facet of who we are, and who we might become.
the Spring equinox- Mar, 20, 2013 when day and night are in balance
Springtime inspires us to believe that, along with the earth, we too might change, release the past, and give birth to new ideas, new relationships, and new perspectives. In honor of spring, we could make a list of the many possibilities we envision for the future and bury it in the earth, surrendering the fertile seeds of our imaginations to the nurturing soil. In tune with the season, we can then watch in wonder as the last of the snow dissolves into the rich brown earth, and stark winter gives way to green possibility.
We greet you sweet Spring with joy and love in our hearts
Monday night at about 11:30pm MT- my equine friend, Babe, had her foal. What an achievement this was- 2 prior still births and one miscarriage… our sweet mare successfully foaled a filly. It was a difficult delivery but she was cared for by a terrific vet. Thanks Mike! The excitement at T & V stables and of course myself cannot even be described. This year Babe gets to hang with the rest of the Moms.
14 hours old... welcome precious one.
Babe is the first of the T & V group to deliver...there are more to come- ha! (however, Hope is the most exciting for me)
I was rummaging in my closet the other day and noticed the birch wreath I made for the winter solstice; it suddenly occurred that it could be used for any occasion and guess what... an occasion was just in a few days. here is my St Patrick's Day wreath.
St Patrick’s Day is nearing and I love corned beef and cabbage- nevertheless, many people do not. Well, friends, here is a simply delicious traditional Irish recipe that will help celebrate this festive day and fill your tummies with a comfort food delight. Also, and this is very important!~Be sure to have some nice cold Irish Beer handy.
Beer Braised Irish Stew and *Colcannon
makes 8 servings
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 (3 pound) beef chuck roast, trimmed of fat and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup coarsely chopped onion
1 cup coarsely chopped carrot
1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle dark beer
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
3 slices bacon
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
2 cups thinly sliced kale or cabbage
1/4 cup milk, warmed
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F
Heat the vegetable oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat until very hot, and brown the meat in 2 batches, stirring to brown the cubes on all sides. Return all the meat to the Dutch oven, sprinkle with flour, and stir lightly to coat the meat with flour. Stir in onion, carrots, dark beer, bay leaves, thyme, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, garlic, and Worcestershire sauce. Bring the mixture to a boil, and cover.
Place the Dutch oven into the preheated oven, and cook for 45 minutes; uncover, stir the stew, and cook until the beef is very tender and the liquid is reduced by half, about 45 more minutes.
Place the bacon in a large, deep skillet, and cook over medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Drain the bacon slices on a paper towel-lined plate. Crumble the bacon and set aside.
About 30 minutes before the stew is ready, make the colcannon: Place the potatoes into a large pot and cover with salted water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and allow to steam dry for a minute or two.
Place the cabbage into a microwave-safe bowl, and add 1 or 2 tablespoons of water. Cover and microwave on High for about 2 1/2 minutes; uncover (watch out for steam) and stir the cabbage. Cover and microwave for about 2 1/2 more minutes, until the cabbage is slightly tender but not mushy. Drain excess liquid, and set the cabbage aside, covered.
Place the potatoes into a large bowl, and add milk, butter, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Beat the potatoes with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Stir in the cabbage, crumbled bacon, and parsley until well combined.
To serve, place a scoop of colcannon onto a plate, make a hollow, and fill with braised beef stew.
Colcannon (Irish: cál ceannann, meaning "white-headed cabbage") is a traditional Irish dish mainly consisting of mashed potatoes with kale or cabbage. It is also the name of a song about the dish.
exxxxxercise--- a word that I particularly do not care for…at least until I am done with whatever exercise I need to do. Then, of course, filled with endorphins… I am jazzed and excited at what I did. Groups or aerobic programs…not really my cup of tea, at least until about 9 years ago I found out about Leslie Sansone’s Walk At Home routines. One word for this ~ EXCELLENT ~ you mainly walk in front of your tv or computer there are five easy steps and…it’s so easy to follow you’ll never feel out of sync or out of place. You can go faster than her or slower, you can go left when she goes right….and she doesn’t tell you which direction to go other than go the direction you feel.
I even get a workout on my abs when we do simple knee lifts -tuck in that tummy real hard and it feels like you are doing a sit-up, but easier. You walk in place or take two steps forward and two back. You do little kicks out in front, side steps, and kick back. The movements are so easy- set the pace you want or follow hers. Do the moves you like and not the ones you don’t, just substitute walking. There are many different routines from slow walking a mile- to very-very fast. Walking one mile up to four.
I guess I just cannot say enough about this program. And, thanks to Leslie, I was able to get a simple 15 minute workout to put on my blog for you to get an idea and try it out for yourself. 15 minutes…everyone can find 15 minutes in their day and the health benefit from that is worth 18 hours of life…trust me. I have also included a link to her website; some of the programs allow you to walk from 1 mile to 4 miles stopping where you want without feeling unfinished.
Do me a favor….check it out….your health is my concern too- for you are friends and I want my friends to be healthy and around for a long time. If you have bad knees, you can do this in a chair…yep! I did when I broke my foot a few years ago. It’s so easy you’ll be able to figure out how. (actually when I get to Colorado one of my snowed-in projects is to do some taping of variations of this style of exercise)
for now- have fun ~ it may take a couple of seconds for the video to load, you can also expand to fill your screen- sorry Email friends you will have to come to the blog for this one :) to Journey's Site
New 1 Mile Challenge Video
p.s.- sometimes Leslie gets a little chatty…turn off the sound and put on your own tunes. Works great with jazz, rock, the classics- anything with a beat that will give you your pace.
spring has always been my biggest time for divesting those items I no longer need although I have done so well the past couple of years I really haven’t anything that needs to go, except…. two really-really big things. along with all the other resources to sell items I decided to put a little “For Sale “ post on Journey with the hope that someone out there will see it and help me get the ball rolling… or shall I say… bike rolling out the door. ha!
Harley Davidson XL883 Hugger 2003 anniversary model
4115 miles, original owner – garage stored
Screamin’ Eagle pipes with Jet Pack
leather saddle bags, small front bag
this is a great bike driven only by me, however, it is time for a new home. Colorado is not my favorite place to ride, this is a California sunshine bike. :)
I have four harps and decided it was time to reduce my collection, this little gal named "Avalon" is a perfect choice. This particular design is laser-engraved and hand cut for depth and detail. The unique curved bottom of Avalon makes this harp easy to hold and adds volume to its voice or sound. I can include some beginning harp books and video tapes if you are new to this instrument or need some basic lessons. This is fun instrument that is easy to play~learning to play a harp looks hard, but it isn't, really- Shipping can be arranged.
Weight- 10 lbs
Range G up to C
Full set of Loveland Levers -flip
Fleece lined Carrying case
Full set of replacement strings & engraved tuning wrench
should anyone be interested…please feel free to email me and I will be happy to send along more photos and prices.
Deshka a new puppy over at Berntoak has arrived.... she is adorable, traveled by train all the way from spain.. to england- even got to go through the "chunnel" between france and england- wow am I excited
pop on over and see the cute video of Fizz and her new sister.
sometimes you just gotta splurge and have that high calorie-sugar blast’n treat. and if that time arrives… what better treat than a pecan pie. I know that is usually a holiday season treat, but both Steve and I thought March was an acceptable month for such a “forbidden” delight. I got this recipe off a Karo syrupbottle over 35 years ago and it still is my favorite.
1 cup Karo Light OR Dark Corn Syrup
3 eggs --slightly beaten
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1-1/2 cups (6 ounces) pecan pieces leave a few halves for top decoration.
1 (9-inch) unbaked pie crust recipe of your choice.
whipped topping of your choice- optional
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Mix corn syrup, eggs, sugar, butter and vanilla (most recipes say to use a spoon, but I use a mixer at slow speed- it is very-very important to have patience to stir long enough for the sugar to dissolve- if you have sugar granules you will have pockets of air and the filling will have a curdled appearance; flavor will still be yummie). Stir in pecans. Pour filling into pie crust.
Bake on center rack of oven for 50 to 55 minutes – done when knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool for 2 hours on wire rack before serving.
If pie crust is overbrowning, cover edges with foil—I use a “pie ring” during cooking.
NUTRITION TIP: To reduce calories, substitute new Karo® Lite Syrup for the regular Karo Corn Syrup. HOWEVER** this is not a diabetic friendly treat--- just have a smaller amount and eat early in the evening, maybe even a walk afterwards.
High Altitude Adjustments: Reduce sugar to 2/3 cup and increase butter to 3 tablespoons. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F. cook maybe 60 to 70 minutes- however, check at 55 mins.
VARIATION: I sometimes use walnuts substituted for pecans to make a walnut pie.