Monday, January 31, 2005

Herbal Neck Pillow Posted by Hello

Making Herbal Neck Pillows

Supplies for Herb Pillow Posted by Hello

paper pattern
Dried Herbs:
1 part Lavender buds
1 part eucalyptus leaf
1 part rosemary
1 part lemon grass
1 part peppermint leaf
1 part spearmint leaf
5 parts flax seed
5 parts wheat
5 drops lavender essential oil

My neighbor and I made these herbal neck pillows for the ladies in our bible study. They smell So Good!! These turned out great- Thanks to my neighbor who is wonderful at sewing.
Keep in mind the sewing instructions might not make sense--I don't know what I am talking about! I was in charge of mixing the herbs and filling the pillows.

Make a U shaped pattern out of newspaper-make it large enough for the pillow to rest on your shoulders and to fit comfortably around the neck. Next, Pin the pattern to two layers of fabric and cut it out. You will have 2 pieces of fabric for each pillow. Now, place wrong sides together and sew the long side of the pillow and the inside of the neck side, leaving the outsides unsewn. Turn right side out. Iron the pillow. Make pencil marks across the length of the pillow at about 2 inch intervals. Sew along these pencil marks. These spaces will hold the herb mixure. Mix up the dried herbs and add the essential oil. Using a funnel fill the spaces with the herbs. Pin each row when finished to keep the herbs from spilling out. When the pillow is full, sew all of the rows shut. To use the pillow warm in the microwave for 1 minute.

I purchased the herbs and the essential oil at

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Pierogi with Cheese and Potato Filling

Today we spent the afternoon trying to cook something new. We had never made Pierogi before. It was a little messy but fun since we were cooking together. I made the filling and Scot made the dough. We kind of combined a couple of Pierogi recipes that I found on the internet. It turned out great, but we will make the dough a little thicker next time. I think it would be fun to have a Pierogi -making dinner party. Have a few fillings (made up ahead of time) for your guests to choose from. Guests could assemble their own Pierogi and help make dinner. With a little bit of wine to drink while cooking, this could be lots of fun.

Pierogi is a classic Polish food. They are a dumpling -like ravioli, shaped in a half circle, filled with different fillings, and not served with sauce.


1 pound or 3 cups all purpose flour
2 eggs
a few spoon fulls of water


2 pounds peeled Yukon Gold potatoes cubed
1/4 cup half and half
1 T butter, melted
1 onion chopped
olive oil
8 ounces shredded cheese

To make the Filling:
1. Boil the potatoes in lightly salted water. Drain. In a large bowl, mash the potatoes with the butter and the half and half.
2. Saute the chopped onion in olive oil or butter. Combine the onion with the mashed potatoes and the cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside or chill while making the dough.

To make the Dough:
1. Place the flour , salt, and eggs in food processor. Process until dough comes together in a ball.
If dough is too dry add a small amount of water. Knead the dough on a floured surface until smooth, then let rest 10 minutes, covered.

2. Roll the dough out thin, similar to making fresh pasta. We used our manual pasta machine to roll out the dough. Do not get the dough too thin. Cut out circles from the dough. We used a 31/2 inch round cookie cutter, but a glass would also work.

3. Place 1/2 Tablespoon of filling on one side of each dough circle. Fold the dough over the filling (this makes a half circle) and seal by pressing with the tines of a fork, making sure none of the filling comes through the edges. The Pierogi should appear slightly overstuffed and plump.

4. In small batches, drop the pierogi into boiling water, stir to prevent them from sticking together, and cover loosely. When they float to the top, uncover the pot, and boil 2-3 minutes longer. Remove with a slotted spoon.

5. Serve with a cooked ground beef, sour cream, or with sauted mushrooms.

Friday, January 28, 2005

Birthday Cake, Look at all those candles!!!! Posted by Hello

Rich Chocolate Layer Cake
source: January 2005 issue country living

This is a very moist chocolate four layer cake.

1 box devil's food cake mix
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 cup mayo, Hellmann's
3 large eggs
1 cup water
Chocolate frosting: recipe follows
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut, toasted
1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted

1. Make the cake: Heat oven to 350. Lightly coat two 8 inch cake pans with shortening. dust with flour. Beat the cake mix, 1/4 cup cocoa, mayo, eggs, and water with electric mixer on low speed. Increase speed to high and beat for 2 more minutes. Pour batter into prepared pans and bake until done 35 minutes. cool cakes in pans on wire racks for 20 minutes. Remove cakes from pans and return to racks until completely cool.

2. make frosting:

2 sticks butter
11/3 cups cocoa
6 cups powdered sugar
2/3 cup milk
2 tsp vanilla

To make the frosting. Melt the butter. Stir in the cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating on medium speed to spreading consistency. Add more milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla.

3. Make the filling:

Wisk the frosting, sour cream, and the vanilla together in a larger bowl. Transfer 11/2 cups of frosting to a medium bowl and stir in almonds and the coconut. Set aside.

4. Assemble the cake: Split both layers and brush away excess crumbs. Place one split layer on cake plate. Tuck strips of wax paper under edges of the cake to protect the plate. Spread 1/3 of the filling over the layer. Top with the next layer and spread another 1/3 of the filling over the top. Repeat with the third cake layer and the remaining filling and top with the final cake layer. Spread the frosting over the top of the cake smoothing out to the edges. Spread the remaining frosting around the sides and serve or store covered for up to 4 days.

Thursday, January 27, 2005


To My Dear and Loving Husband
IF ever two were one then surely we.
If ever man were loved by wife, then thee;
If ever wife were happy in a man,
Compare with me, ye women, if you can.
I prize thy love more than whole mines of gold
Or all the riches that the East doth hold.
My love is such that rivers cannot quench,
Nor aught but love from thee give recompense.
Thy love is such I can no way repay,
The heavens reward thee manifold, I pray.
Then while we live, in love let's so perservere
That when we live no more, we may live ever.
Anne Bradstreet

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Cardinal Cookie Basket Posted by Hello

Packaged Cookie Posted by Hello
Cardinal Cookies

I made these Iced Cardinal cookies yesterday for my nieghbors 50th birthday. She loves cardinals and also the color Red. I purchase all my cookie cutters and most of my decorating supplies at a place in Omaha called Kitchen Collectables .
They sell beautiful copper cookie cutters in almost any design you can imagine.
I couldn't resist purchasing a few new cutters. I bought a clown, a bird house, a robin, two hearts, a basket, and a bird that I used here. I should be set for all my Spring cookie making. I love to package my finished cookies in cellophane bags and tie them up with ribbon. This just makes them look more special.

Iced Cardinal Cookies Posted by Hello

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Cade's Card Posted by Hello

Completed Card Posted by Hello

Supplies  Posted by Hello


I was inspired by these valentines: Martha Stewart Hand-Stitched Valentines
These were very simple to put together and required supplies I had around the house. I cut hearts and rectangles out of my sons construction paper. I then used a large needle and stitched dental floss in an "X" on the hearts and corners of the rectangle. I pasted the rectangle in the center of a piece of folded card stock. I then arranged and pasted the stitched hearts on the front of the card. I added a bow to the front of the card by tying a ribbon through two paper punch holes. I will later add a photo of the boys and a hand-written greeting before sending them off to family members and friends. While I was busy making this card, my 6 year old son started creating his own Valentine to send to his grandparents.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Fun in the snow. Posted by Hello

My First Day of Blogging

Welcome to my Journal

I intend for this Journal to be a place where I can share the things I do everyday or week, if for nothing more, than for the feeling of accomplishment and self improvement. For the people who stumble apon this journal, I hope that I can express the love, peace, joy, and happiness that my simple everyday life is full of.

Here is some information about me, my life, my family…….

I apologize for the rambling on and on –or wait is that what a blog is for?????????
I am a stay at home mom of two boys ages 6 and 4. We live in Nebraska. I have a husband who works most of his hours from home. We have two dogs, a terrier and a standard poodle. I love to cook and bake. I have a passion for old cookbooks and love to try new things weekly. My husband often asks me if I ever make anything twice. His passion for cooking consists of home brew and now making Honey mead. I also love to garden and landscape or I should say help him landscape. My husband has built a series of streams and ponds stocked with goldfish and koi. Since I discovered winter sowing, I can satisfy my need to garden during the cold winter months in Nebraska. I think this journal will be a great place to share this hobby and record the progress. Our family loves nature, we spend a great deal of time in our yard or at the near by parks. I try to walk everyday and sometimes walk from our home and to the nearest park for exercise. I love to take pictures; but I don’t do it enough. I am hoping this blog keeping will encourage me to take more photos more often. And also use the Digital Camera that I begged for for so long. I love to do crafts by my self and especially with my children. I am always amazed at their eagerness and their creativity. I am trying to or want to learn to crochet or knit. I love aromatherapy, essential oils, herbs and making anything naturally. If I ever get brave enough, I want to make cold pressed soap- real soap from scratch- not the melt and pour stuff that I make frequently now. I could go on for ever it seems if I started listing all the things I want to do someday. So I will stop here, this is enough info for now.

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