Monday 25 December 2017

Wishing You a Blessed Christmas

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. 
And this shall be a sign unto you; 
Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. 
Luke 2:11-12

Love and Hugs
Phoebe x

Thursday 21 December 2017

Thrifty Thursday... and Yorkshire Puds

Hubby is on his way back from his work trip to Texas...and no more work for 6 days so our Christmas can officially start. While he was away I kept myself busy with Christmas prep. I also managed a quick trip to Goodwill and picked up a couple of bargains
This pretty China plate for 50 cents
And this cute little house for $1. 
I put a couple of  Christmas lights inside and it looks really pretty

We have also decided that after having such a huge turkey for Thanksgiving we are going to have a change for Christmas. We have a small turkey breast ...but for the big day itself ...we have a nice piece of beef. Of cant have Roast Beef without Yorkshire today I made a batch and I have frozen them so they can be reheated when needed. I have shared the recipe before... but here it is again, Its a recipe passed down from my mother, grandmother....and possibly great grandmother... and it never fails

Nana B's Yorkshire Puddings

1 cup (140g) plain flour
200 ml milk
4 eggs
salt and pepper
Vegetable oil for cooking

  • Heat the oven 230C/ Gas 8
  • Pour a little oil into into a 12 hole non stick muffin tin
  • Put in the oven to heat until sizzling hot
  • Put flour into mixing bowl
  • Beat eggs into milk and add gradually to the flour
  • Beat until there are no lumps, add salt and pepper to taste then pour into a jug
  • Remove tins from oven and carefully pour batter into holes
  • Cook undisturbed in the oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown 
  • Serve immediately or if you leave them to cool they can be frozen for later use
Love and Hugs
Phoebe x

Monday 18 December 2017

Meal Plan Monday.... Kinda!

Its the week leading to Christmas! Anyone else excited? Mind you..I have the spirit of Christmas in my heart already.

This weeks meal plan.. quite frankly.. is not much of a meal plan at all!. Tomorrow hubby flies to Texas for three days with his boss to check out new machinery for the plant he works in (jealous much??). Im not going to cook much just for me.. probably just my fave go to.. poached egg on toast.. or maybe some homemade soup that I have in the freezer. Who knows? The skies the 

When he gets home he dosnt have to go back to work til two days after Christmas.. so he says he has a few surprises planned. Seriously...this guy is a keeper. So I have a looong break from cooking dinner til Christmas Day.. though Im sure his fave breakfast eggs ( with ham, cheese, onions, jalapenos and olives) will be on the menu every day.

And for the first time in many years... we will be out with friends on Christmas Eve. A very informal get together.. with a truck load of food and lots of laughter. It should be fun

So this week..I can make sure I have everything done so when he gets home.. our Christmas can start in full

Ohhh.. I so love this time of year

Have a great week everyone... Merry Christmas

Weekly Plan - or should I say Non Plan - 18th December 2017
Spaghetti Bolognese, Garlic Bread

Tuesday              No Kitchen Duties

Wednesday         Another Day Off

Thursday            And Yet Another Day Off!

Surprise Day Out with Hubby

Saturday             Day out with Hubby and Bank Cards

Christmas Eve    
Dinner and Get together with friends

Saturday 16 December 2017

Stitching for the Season

I'm still designing and sewing my little hearts...
and making them a bit festive
 with stars...
and with snowflakes and sparkles.

Love and Hugs
Phoebe x

Friday 15 December 2017

Another Week of Favourites

Its Friday... so its an opportunity to look back over the week with Suzanne at Living to Tell The Tale.  I'm grateful for everything in my life..but here are five that stand out

Nativity Plays

Its that time of year again and I'm so glad that schools (well some) still remember the Reason for the Season. All my children appeared in Nativity Plays growing up. I remember MrJ was a particularly good Joseph one year.. MrM was a fabulous shepherd and MissC was a superb shining star. All these years later,  the baton has been passed to my grandson Little H who was a rather splendid Roman soldier.. who sang his little heart out. For me ...this is one of the things that makes Christmas so magical

Christmas Music
Staying on the subject of the Nativity...I was in the Dentists office waiting for MrD and this came on the radio. I don't care where I am..but every time I hear it my heart swells and I fight back my tears. I am so grateful to have the Saviour in my life.. this song just fills me with joyful emotion. It has to be one of my favourite Christmas songs

Christmas Cards
In these days of the Internet and emails, its so nice to receive hand written mail... especially this time of year. I love getting Christmas cards. They are so personal... and its heart warming to know someone took the time to read the verse..choose the card and write the sentiment. I will always send cards this way.
Happy Anniversary
This fabulous..and adored couple are celebrating their 54th wedding anniversary today. Heavenly Father brought my dear aunt through her recent heart scare so she could spend more wonderful years with my uncle. They are the glue that keeps our extended family together. I love them very much

Happy Anniversary...Part 2
And talking of Anniversaries... MrD and I celebrate our third  this weekend. This man is my tower of strength.. my voice of reason and my biggest supporter. The love and respect he shows me knows no bounds. Every day has been happier than the last. I am so blessed to be married to my soul mate

Love and Hugs
Phoebe x

Thursday 14 December 2017

Long Distance Baking.... and Gingerbread Men

Whats the best thing about Christmas cooking? To me its always been making cookies with the kids... but being so far away from them..its difficult. Not this year though. This morning.. Miss C and I made some cookies together ...via Skype! It was the first time she has made cookies herself and she was nervous... The whole business of being a grown up and running your own home can be nerve racking. She says she wants to show MrP that she is a good housewife. Seriously...she keeps a lovely home so she needn't worry.
She attempted to make our traditional Cranberry and White Chocolate Cookies. After a shaky start.. she did really well. She said they were delicious and brought back memories. Im so pleased for her

Ive already made a couple of batches of that particular cookie...which as usual hubby takes to work to share.. so I made a few gingerbread men....and ladies. I used an recipe given to me about 30 years ago..and it has never failed me. The decoration seemed to turn out well even with a very shaky hand. And the best part.. its beginning to smell a lot like Christmas..

Gingerbread Men...and Ladies

1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup molasses
1 large egg
2 tablespoons water
2-2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. 
  • Beat in molasses, egg and water. 
  • In another bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients 
  • Gradually beat into creamed mixture. 
  • Divide dough in half. 
  • Shape each into a disk; wrap in plastic. 
  • Refrigerate until easy to handle, about 30 minutes.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll each portion of dough to 1/8-in. thickness. 
  • Cut with a floured gingerbread man cookie cutter. 
  • Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets.
  • Bake  for 8-10 minutes. until edges are firm
  • Remove to wire racks to cool completely. 
  • Frost as desired.
Love and Hugs
Phoebe x

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Bye Bye My Little Pal

Everything is quite strange since Scruffys passing. I know I know...he was only a cat but seriously... the house feels quite empty now. He was such a good, clean boy.. never went on the kitchen counters.. and was always ready for a fuss. He turned up on MrD's doorstep in 2004...and decided to stay. At that time the vet giving him his shots estimated he was between 5 and 7 years old. So he really was quite old. For the last week had stopped eating..could hardly drink  and was just slipping away. When he started having seizures we took him to the animal hospital. But we knew it really was his time to go. We were heartbroken and  we miss him so much
I miss the way he used to wait for us at the door when we came home...
sharing the occasional spoon of ice cream...
how he gave us evil looks after his bath...
and last year he even read his Christmas card from my daughter
This year we have had a different card in the mail.. 
from the thoughtful staff at the hospital where he died
They were so good with us.. and eased the pain of Scruffys passing..
even putting a little sign on the door to our room
RIP Mr Scruff

Love and Hugs
Phoebe x

Monday 11 December 2017

Meal Plan Monday

It turned out to be a very sad weekend. Our beloved cat Scruffy passed away at the ripe old age of 20. He was such a good boy and a faithful companion who was at my side throughout my chemo. His passing has left a hole in our hearts. MrD is particularly quiet as he has lost his little buddy. Its incredible how attached we get to our pets. But hes at peace now

This week we have a couple of medical our menu reflects that. This afternoon I have an appointment with Dr Phan for the the results of my blood tests. Its just to make sure the cancer is staying away. A stew simmering in the slow cooker means dinner will be ready when we get home. Thursday MrD has his final dental work done so a soft dinner is on the menu for that evening. Mind you...I think he would eat breakfast for dinner every day, Saturday is a surprise day out with hubby...not the same as last Saturday apparently..which was postponed because of Scruffys passing. It will be our anniversary weekend its very exciting.

The days are flying by and Christmas is getting closer by the second. I'm ready...are you? Don't stress and try to enjoy every moment. It really is the best time of the year

Have a great week everyone..

Weekly Plan - 11th December 2017
Beef Stew

Tuesday              Tacos

Wednesday         Pork chops

Thursday            Breakfast for Dinner


Saturday             Day out with Hubby

Roast Chicken, Roast Potatoes, Roasted Veggies ..

Saturday 9 December 2017

Do's Tree

My mum loved Christmas and always made it special for us..even when times were hard. She died in December 2004..and her funeral was just before Christmas. Every year since then... my Auntie Jan back in Wales puts up a tree..affectionately known as Do's her memory. 
This may not have lights because of the heavy snowfall.. but Heavenly Father sure has given it some beautiful decoration, Happy Christmas Mum,

Love and Hugs
Phoebe x

Friday 8 December 2017

Not A Bad Week....

Its Friday... so its an opportunity to look back over the week with Suzanne at Living to Tell The Tale. Its been a bit of a mixed bag..but all in all its been a good one which I'm grateful for 

Baby Shower
Last weekend was my daughters and Mr P's Baby Shower with their friends in Wales. Unfortunately the Internet connection let us down and I couldn't join in the party but it was lovely seeing all the photos afterwards. So much pink! It was wonderful

The Bishops Wife
I absolutely adore Christmas movies.. especially the old black and white ones. The other afternoon I settled down with the cat and a hot chocolate to watch one of my favourites.... 'The Bishops Wife' starring David Niven, Loretta Young and the fabulous Cary Grant as Dudley the Angel. At the end of the movie the Bishop stands in his pulpit and gives his sermon.. the story of  An Empty Stocking. It touches my heart and brings a lump to my throat every time I hear it

Fish n' Chips
Fish and chips are synonymous with the British..Indeed, growing up it was the Saturday night treat to go to the local 'chippy' and have Fish and chips with lashings of salt and malt vinegar.. all wrapped up in newspaper. Over here its not that big of a deal.. so I have only had it once in three years. However... last weekend we went out to dinner with friends... and there it was on the menu. So of course I  had to try. Well.. the chips wernt big and chunky... and there was coleslaw not mushy peas.. but the battered fish was delicious and did taste like home. Definitely my favourite meal of the week

Cooler Weather
Its snowing back home in  Wales.. and I miss it. This was the view from my window a few years ago. Although its not on the same scale as other parts of the country.. its nice that the weather here is getting cooler. When I went on my walk yesterday morning it was 42..although it did reach 80 in the afternoon. As a lady of a certain age..its a blessed relief to go out and about without 'glowing'.  And I can sleep comfortably at night again. 

Uncle Pete
And finally... I cant really say this was a favourite part of my week...but its definitely one of my favourite people. My dear Uncle Pete died this week. He had a massive heart attack that he didn't come out of. I guess as Ive got older... I have forgotten that other people get older too. It was really upsetting to hear..and its sad that I cant be at the funeral. But.. it is a blessing to know where he is and that one day we will meet again.. And I'm guessing he and Dad are having a good old time catching up. Love you Uncle Pete... Until we meet again x

Love and Hugs
Phoebe x