Welcome to Wishing for Christmas

This blog will have recipes and decorating ideas that hopefully some of you can use while your family and friends gather in.I wish you all the best for the season!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Storing an artificial tree

There are lots of us that use artificial trees. Don't you just hate it when you pull the tree out each year to put it up and you have to sort through the branches looking for the same color coded paint. Well you know that a lot of that paint gets worn off from year to year and doesn't that make it even more hard to tell which goes where? Sometimes the length can be hard to tell apart too. Here's a little trick my husband and I started doing a few years ago and it works really well. When you take the tree down this year, remove one row at a time. Flatten those branches down like you normally would. Now bundle them together with string, yarn, a strip of fabric, whatever you have. Each row gets separated as it's taken down. Next year when you pull the tree out to put it up, you won't be playing the guessing game. Hope this tip helps.

Overflow of ornaments?

Have you gathered way too many ornaments over the years ? Too many to put on the tree, and tired of looking at some of them even though they are still in excellent shape? You probably are like me and could easily say yes to these questions. If you have some that are in good shape and you know you will no longer need them, place them in a basket near the front door. We all have guests that pop in during the holidays. Send an ornament from the basket home with them on the way out. You'll be passing them on without throwing them in the trash, and your guests will appreciate the gesture.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Recycled brown paper bag gift tag

Here is an idea to make a gift tag from a brown paper bag.It's easy to do and gives a country/ prim look to a package.

Brown paper bag
white gift tissue

1. Cut two tags exactly the same from a brown paper bag. I used a Cricut Expression to do this so they would be exact and I wouldn't have to punch a hole in them, but you can do this without one.

2. Glue the printed sides together. Let dry and punch or poke a hole in the top.

3. Take a white piece of gift tissue and cut a small snowflake from folded paper. Remember doing this in kindergarten? I had a piece of white with silver glitter on it and it worked great.

4. Glue the snowflake to the tag, let dry. Loop a piece of string through the hole and tie the ends together. You can write the 'to'and 'from' on the back.

Have fun!

Christmas Tea

Ok, that's just the name. There isn't any actual tea in this recipe.This is a favorite of our family's and we serve it every year.

Christmas Tea

1 small can frozen lemonaide
1 small can frozen orange juice
Cranberry juice cocktail
About 1 cup sugar (adjust to taste)
1/2 cup red hots
3or 4 cinnamon sticks
7 or 8 cloves
1 1/2- 2 cups water

Using a crock pot, add all ingredients together . You probably will not use all of the cranberry jouice as it probably won't fit in the crockpot.I usually have about 1/3 of the bottle leftover. That's ok, there will be plenty added for flavor. Sugar and water can be adjusted to increase or lessen the tartness. Heat on high until sugar and red hots have melted. Reduce to low and leave on low to keep the drink hot during your holiday get-together. Enjoy!

Quick disguise

Ok , here is a quick disguise that is pretty much a no-brainer and maybe not even worthy of posting. We all seem to accumulate a pile of papers and other stuff that we don't know where to go with it. We've been busy , and now with the hustle and bustle at this time of year, we sure don't have time to sort through it.

Grab a basket or suitable container big enough to accommodate the size of the pile. Place contents inside and add bowl fillers (or whatever you can find that looks decorative that would work )on top .It's a quick way to disguise when you've run out of time to organize before a party.It's also a quick way to straighten things up when you've gotten a last minute call from family or relatives that they're coming by for a visit. No one will be the wiser!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Cinnamon Simmer

Need a little quick Christmastime aroma in the air? Try mixing a little cinnamon, cloves, and vanilla and some water in a teakettle or small saucepan and simmer on low on the stove. The house will smell great . Be sure that you don't let it 'boil' dry!

Christmas tree decoration tip

Here is a little tip for lighting an artificial tree. This will require an extra set of lights. When you have the middle pole all put together, wind an extra set of lights around the pole and then add your tree boughs, then decorate as usual .The extra lights add a little extra sparkle and helps the tree come alive.

Marinated Chicken Legs


2 lbs. chicken legs (or breats)- skin legs
12 oz. bottle of Zesty Italian dressing

Put chicken in a large bowl and cover with dressing. Make sure to cover all the legs with dressing. Place in refrigerator over night.

Bake on a flat sheet at 350 degrees for about 90 minutes or until done.

Sausage Balls


1 lb. pork or turkey sausage
2 cups Bisquick
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

Mix , shape into balls the size of a small walnut. Bake at 325 degrees for 25 minutes.Serve warm.

( I have made this recipe a few times . It's quick, easy and a great crowd pleaser. Makes a great appetizer for parties and family get togethers. My guys like them for their little Super Bowl party)

Unbeatable Pecan Pie


2 teaspoons butter
1 1/2 cup chopped pecans
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup real maple syrup
1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 purchased unbaked pie crust

In a heavy skillet, melt 2 teaspoons butter over low heat. Add nuts and stir about 5 mintues, or until nuts begin to color.Let cool for 10 minutes. Mix together beaten egg, maple syrup, sugar, 1/3 cup better, vanilla, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir in nuts. Pour filling into crust, the pecans will float to the top as it bakes. Bake for 45- 50 minutes , or until filling is set, in a 350 degree oven.Transfer pan to a wire rack and cool.

( this is a super recipe and has a good flavor with using the maple syrup instead of corn syrup.It's the best pecan pie I ever tasted! If you like pecan pie, it's a must try recipe.)