A Lot to be Thankful For

I am sorry the only message you got from me last week was one of discouragement and frustration. That is not me, well not normally anyways. I just wanted to show that not everything is perfect around here, (if anyone even thought that when I am always saying how imperfect I am anyways).
This time however is a time to reflect on the many blessings we have been given and all that we are Thankful for. I mean that is the name of the Holiday we will be celebrating tomorrow, isn’t it? Thanks-giving. In recent years, this time of year has become too commercialized and focused on getting the best deal as soon as you can for as cheap as you can. People have even died over the issue. That seems beyond ridiculous to me.
This year we are setting apart Thanksgiving Day, as a sacred day.  A day for family, excellent food, and football (a tradition brought from my husband’s side of our little family). We are going to reflect on the things we are thankful for this past year and look to the future with all of its brightness with our hopes and dreams. And if we do any “black friday” shopping we will be doing so at local small businesses, to help boost our local economy.
So my invitation to you is that when you have a few moments in between the hustle and bustle of the next few days take that time to be thankful, to recognize the blessings that are before you whether they be family, friends, good food, or just life in general. We all have been truly blessed, isn’t it about time we start recognizing it?

From our Family, to Yours… With love and Thanks-giving this Holiday season!
What are you thankful for this time of year?

Dinner in Fifteen Minutes!!

If you know me at all, you know that I say “Come over at 6:30 for dinner.” But in all actuality dinner won’t be ready until at least 7, so you know to eat a small snack before you come if you’re starving, it might be a while. And though I try to plan and prepare as best I can, it seems that I can’t avoid this. (It’s one of my goals to somehow master the clock and have dinner done when I want it to be.) But anyways this last week while home for Thanksgiving, I found that I learned this skill from my parents. We had my in-laws, brother-in-law and nephew, and a family my parents knew over for Thanksgiving Dinner and told them to be there at 2. We didn’t eat until 3:20. Crazy, I know. So I discovered this is a learned flaw. Hopefully, it can just be unlearned.

That’s why this post is so amazing. My husband and I came home from shopping and I was starving. We unloaded the groceries and then he sat down to play his baseball game on X-Box 360, knowing it was going to take a while because I was going to make dinner. We had stocked up on all the great deals for Thanksgiving, as I’m sure you have too, and for some reason I was really craving stuffing, potatoes, and gravy. Basically the whole Thanksgiving meal, but I just didn’t have the time, plus I was starving. I wanted meat, but it takes so long to cook. What to do, what to do. Then it hit me and being inventive I threw together a delicious meal. And whats even better was that is was in fifteen minutes! These were the star players: Stove Top Cornbread Stuffing, Canned Chicken, Potato Pearls (any instant potatoes will be fine), Valley Fresh Steamers, Instant Brown Gravy Mix, and Rhodes Warm-N-Serve Soft Dinner Rolls.

The Timetable

15 minutes to go: Sprayed a cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray, layout the rolls on the cookie sheet and pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees. Heat up 1/4 c of butter on the stove, in a pot and when it is warm add the chicken to warm it.

14 minutes to go: Grab a pan and pour 1 c of cold water in with the gravy mix and stir with the burner on high. Then grab another pot and heat the correct amount of water on high to reconstitute your potatoes. Stir the gravy.

13 minutes to go: Stir the gravy.

12 minutes to go: Stir the gravy. When the oven is pre-heated add in the rolls, they need 8-12 minutes to cook (mine took 10).

11 minutes to go: Stir the gravy.  Add in 1-1/2 c hot water to the chicken and butter, and heat on high to bring to a boil.

10 minutes to go: Stir the gravy.

9 minutes to go: Stir the gravy. Grab a plate and lay down the Valley Fresh Steamers on it to be ready to microwave it.

8 minutes to go: Stir the gravy. Add the Valley Fresh Steamers to the microwave and cook  for 6 minutes.

7 minutes to go: When the gravy is boiling, stir for one minute, until thickened, and then remove from heat and cover.

6 minutes to go: Add the stuffing mix to the boiling water, butter and chicken and stir together well. Cover and remove from heat.

5 minutes to go: Add the potatoes to the boiling water and stir together. Remove from heat and cover.

4 minutes to go: Check the rolls, remove from the oven if finished if not leave in the oven for however much longer is necessary. Set the table with plates, cups, spoons, napkins, and forks, the potatoes, gravy, and any drink you want.

3 minutes to go: Check the rolls. Finish setting the table.

2 minutes to go: Leave the Valley Fresh Steamers in the microwave for 1 minute. Remove the rolls from the oven and set on the table.

1 minute to go: Fluff the stuffing with a fork and put on the table. Grab the Valley Fresh Steamers from the microwave (be careful it’s hot!) and pour onto the plate. And set on the table.

0 minutes to go: “Honey, dinners ready.”

Some of my favorite responses from my husband include, “What?!”, “This is awesome!”

It was super easy, and it was very good. The next day my husband ate the rest of the leftovers for lunch. It’s not the healthiest meal out there, but sometimes it’s good to have fast food, still be “homemade”.

Thanksgiving

I apologize to everyone, that I haven’t posted in a while. The hubby and I have been out-of-state, with our family for Thanksgiving. It also hasn’t helped that I have what seems to be a never-ending cold. There was a couple of things that we’ve done to help keep Thanksgiving the focus and as a pre-courser to the Christmas season and Spirit. I believe that there is a reason that Thanksgiving comes before Christmas, to promote a season of Thanks to be Thankful for the reason for the Christmas season.

 

I took an idea from this site, and we Mod Podged fall leaves onto Hurricane Glasses.  It’s not hard to do at all! Just takes a little patience. We went out and picked leaves from some trees. They then need to pressed in a book for 24 hours. I would recommend trying to have them be a little curved, but either way it will work. Then you lay out the leaves and paint the Mod Podge the area where you are attaching the leaves. Then you paint on the Mod Podge onto the back of the leaves and then paint over them to help them stick. Have patience it will take some time. But other than that it is easy and fun!

The hubby and I are still trying to work out what traditions we as a new family will have.

What are some of your traditions that your family does? I hope you all have a Happy Thanksgiving!!