Styx!

As much as we sometimes hate having an empty nest,  we have been having fun lately doing whatever our randomness brings.  Last week we went to a St. Louis Cardinals game. We found a great bargain on tickets on one our local Facebook swap groups, and 12 hours later we made the three hour drive to Busch Stadium to watch my boys of summer. 

When I found out that Styx would be preforming locally (and good music locally is rare) I expressed to my hubby that I’d love to go.  2 days later he surprised me with tickets.

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Hubs and I parked at the venue

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What an amazing show! If you get a chance,  go see them.  They play the classics as well as more recent music.  I forgot how very talented they are! A mixture of electric and acoustic guitar Here is the link to their 2015 touring schedule.

Rock on dudes!

Christmas Ringtones

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I have a new phone and lost all my ringtones. Since I like all kinds of music, and I think outside of the proverbial box. I got busy making some new ringtones. I thought I’d share them with all of you.

If you like the ringtones, you’ll love the complete songs, and in most cases, the entire albums.

Here are some links to their music:

Pentatonix

Celtic Thunder

Bob Rivers Comedy

Bing Crosby

Gaither Homecoming

Mariah Carey

Here is the list of ringtones:

  • 12 Pains of Christmas
  • Angels We Have Heard On High
  • Carol of the Bells
  • Hershey’s Kisses – We Wish You A Merry Christmas
  • I’m Gettin’ Nuttin’ For Christmas
  • Joy To The World
  • Little Drummer Boy
  • All I Want For Christmas Is You
  • Mary Did You Know
  • Sleigh Ride
  • The True Meaning Of Christmas (Linus from Charlie Brown Christmas)
  • White Christmas

These ringtones are ready to load on Android devices. If you have an iPhone, you will need to download and convert them in iTunes before they will play on your iPhone.

You can download these ringtones at this link.

Christmas wreath on a budget

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My daughter wanted a silver and gold Christmas wreath for her front door. She went shopping with her mother-in-law and didn’t like the retail prices she found.

Luckily, Hobby Lobby was running a half-off sale on all their Christmas items. I bought a 24 inch frame for $5, and two 9 foot garlands for $5 each. I also purchased 2 rolls of wired ribbon for $5 each, and each roll had 90 feet of beautiful ribbon! I have plenty left for other projects

After wiring the garland to the frame, I went to my local Dollar Tree store for inspiration. I found plenty of silver & gold bling to accessorize the wreath. I spent $36 including glue sticks and floral wire to finish the project.

I love the battery operated candles! There were 2 of them in a package for only $1 at Dollar Tree! Wiring them to the wreath was very easy, too.

I spent $61 total making this wreath, and I’ve seen this size wreath sell for $200 and up.

My next project is decorating a vintage wooden sled for her front porch. We purchased it at a flea market about 15 years ago, and she enjoyed using that old sled for several winters.

I’ll post pics of that project when I finish it. I have a 10 day stretch at work coming up, so it will be after Thanksgiving when I begin to tackle that one.

Canberry White Chocolate Cheesecake – Quick & Easy

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Crust:
1 sleeve Graham crackers crushed
2 Tbls sugar
1 stick unsalted butter melted
Combine and press into deep dish pie pan or spring form pan
Bake at 350 for 5 minutes and cool completely
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Filling:
Combine 1 can sweetened condensed milk and 1 8oz pkg room temp cream cheese. Blend until smooth. Add 1 Pkg white chocolate pudding mix. Blend til smooth. Add 1 package Craisins or off brand dried cranberries. Fold in 8oz cool whip.

Spread in cooled crust and chill. Before serving sprinkle with a few cranberries and grated white chocolate

Easy Cinnamon Rolls

Easy Cinnamon Rolls

Dust off your bread machines. Don’t have one? I see them barely used at garage sales all the time for under $10 but usually around $5. This recipe can be dumped into the bread machine on the “DOUGH” cycle the night before and prepared the next morning.

INGREDIENTS:

1/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla
pudding mix
1 cup warm milk
1 egg, room temperature
1 tablespoon white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 cups bread flour
1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 (8 ounce) package cream cheese,
softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons milk
DIRECTIONS:
1. In the pan of your bread machine, combine water, melted butter, vanilla pudding, warm milk, egg, 1 tablespoon sugar, salt, bread flour and yeast. Set machine to Dough cycle; press Start.
2. When Dough cycle has finished, turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a 17×10 inch rectangle. Spread with softened butter. In a small bowl, stir together brown sugar, cinnamon and pecans. Sprinkle brown sugar mixture over dough.
3. Roll up dough, beginning with long side. Slice into 16 one inch slices and place in 9×13 buttered pan. Let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
4. Bake in preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes. While rolls bake, stir together cream cheese, softened butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and milk. Remove rolls from oven and top with frosting.

Super Easy French Grilled Chicken

My love of summer foods is based on 2 things: garden fresh veggies and charcoal grilling.  One of my family’s all time favorite is French Grilled Chicken.  So easy and absolutely deliciius.

You CAN use the IQF boneless, skinless chicken breast, but I have found that the fresh boneless, skinless breast absorbs more of the marinade and flavor.

I horizontally split 3 pounds of fresh boneless, skinless chicken breasts. In a bag or covered dish add:
1 bottle of Wishbone Sweet & Spicy French Dressing
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1 tablespoon worchestershire sauce

Mix marinade well, cover and let marinade overnight, shaking or stirring occasionally.  If you don’t have overnight, marinate at least 4 hours.

Lightly salt the chicken when you put it on the grill.  Don’t overcook or the chicken will be dry.

If you have leftovers, make sandwiches on hoagie rolls with fresh spinach and Thousand Island salad dressing.

Note: I’m not a brand name snob, but in this case the Wishbone brand and the Sweet & Spicy French formula is the best for this dish.

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“See Ya Later” Mama Ruth

A dear family friend passed away this morning.  The tears I shed are selfish ones, because the suffering for her is over.

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“Mama Ruth” Maahs is on the right, my own mama is on the left.

About 10 years ago, I accidentally wrote a song when I found out my brother had terminal cancer. The composition is courtesy of one of my dearest friends, Tony Baggett and is appropriate now for Mama Ruth.

The lyrics are below, and the MP3 file can be found here.

Our time together is soon to be no more
But you see, it’s only temporary.
Because Jesus is our Savior, of that we are sure
We’ll meet again, you and me
 
And we when again get together
The angels will hush their singing
Shouts of joy forever will have Heaven’s walls ringing
 
I can’t say goodbye because it won’t be forever.
Wait for me at Jesus’ feet until we are together.
Show me ’round that city, the paradise you’ve found
Tell me of the glory as we walk around.
No more tears where eternity begins
Your journey here is over
But your memory never, ever ends
And while our hearts are heavy
It’s not goodbye we say, but
We’ll see you later.
 
While together here we traveled a road
We laughed, we cried
We shared life’s loads.
Someday soon, we will hurt no more
In the presence of perfection
There’s glory in store
 
Sing with angels, we’ll worship together
Around His throne, forever and ever
The world behind us, then perfectly complete
Pain and sorrows gone, no more grief.
 
I can’t say goodbye because it won’t be forever.
Wait for me at Jesus’ feet until we are together.
Show me ’round that city, the paradise you’ve found
Tell me of the glory as we walk around.
No more tears where eternity begins
Your journey here is over
But your memory never, ever ends
And while our hearts are heavy
It’s not goodbye we say, but
We’ll see you later.
 
See you later…….
 
See you later.