Monday, November 17, 2008

Yummy, Yummy Chocolate Pie

This really is an old recipe! It was my job for my whole childhood (seems like it, anyway...) to stand at the stove and stir the melting chocolate and marshmallow so it wouldn't scorch. I was so happy to find it a few years ago with modifications for the microwave! Now, this pie filling is a snap! And a total crowd pleaser. FYI - I checked on Google for this recipe, and at least in the first several listed, did not find any quite like this. Similar, but not the same crust for sure. I really like the traditional pie crust. It balances out the richness of the chocolate, in my opinion.

So, start by making your pre-baked pie crust. I like to make a homemade crust, but when I'm in a hurry, I prefer the Marie Calendar brand frozen crust. I always let it thaw enough to re-crimp the edge. Then at least it looks homemade! :)

1/4 C milk - whole is best, but 2% will do fine
1 1/2 C miniature marshmallows
8oz. (1/2lb.) Hershey milk chocolate candy bar- with or without almonds.
1 C (1/2 pint) cold heavy whipping cream
1 traditional pie crust pre-baked and cooled

1. After you've baked your pie shell, break up the chocolate bar. Notice the nice square pieces? Well, this is important - you get to eat two of them while you make this pie! Or, you can give them to your children who may be clamoring for some of that huge candy bar. Just make sure you remove two of the little squares because you don't need quite all of the bar. You need 7oz. specifically. 2. In a microwave-safe measure cup, pour in the 1/4 cup of milk. Then add to that the 1 1/2 cup mini marshmallows. Large marshmallows will only work if you cut them up. Microwave at HIGH for 45 seconds, then stir well. Now microwave an additional 15 seconds at a time, stirring after each, until the marshmallows are melted. It should not take long!3. Add the chocolate pieces to the hot milk and marshmallow. Just stir it up and the chocolate will melt - no more cooking is necessary. Now set this yummy stuff aside and let it cool to room temperature.
4. When the chocolate mixture is almost cooled, you can start beating the cream. 1 cup of heavy cream - not cool whip, or anything sweetened. Just a 1/2 pint of heavy whipping cream, in a medium sized bowl, whipped until it's stiff.

5. Then, with hand mixer on the lowest setting, stir in the chocolate. YUM! Dump it all into your pie shell, smooth it, and swirl it so it looks pretty! Lick the bowl, and your done! The pie needs to be refrigerated, and will be set in about 4 hours. Overnight is even better - it slices up firm, and really cold and fluffy.
We usually add the sweet cream toppings just before eating. You can cover the whole pie, or just dollop cream on individual servings. I make these pies the day before Thanksgiving, and I always have a piece for breakfast after I get the turkey in...don't tell my kids...

Have Fun!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Drawing Results - plus a chocolate teaser...

Drum roll, please...

The winner is - Julie! Julie has a wonderful blog, and sells darling things on Etsy. Hers were some of the first things I purchased on Etsy when I first discovered it. :)
The second winner is my friend, Lois. In a nutshell, she is amazing and beautiful.

Well, I wish could give everyone copies of this book and goodies...I do give you all
my best wishes! And, thanks for joining in the fun.
p.s. - If any of you would like to have a scrap shirt, just e-mail me! You can order that way, and pay through paypal, or mail me a check.

Proud Mama wants to share - look what Emmalyn made for her English project! She was asked to find her "golden line" (meaningful statement) from the book, "Great Expectations", and create a visual piece with it. I think it turned out just great!

I wish I had a picture to post of my other daughter, Colette, who performed all weekend in the school play, "It's a Wonderful Life". We saw it Friday eve - and really caught the holiday spirit!! She and the whole cast did an excellent job (we laughed, we cried...).

It's time to get out all the classic holiday films.

I'm grateful for my girls who are developing their talents and sharing them with others. :)

Tomorrow I'll post the recipe for this fabulous chocolate pie. This is a great recipe that was put out by the Hershey company over 40 years ago - they were promoting the Hershey milk chocolate candy bars. We've had these pies at Thanksgiving for my whole life. I'm the last in my family to make these every year. I have to make five, or so, of them because everyone (especially kids) loves them! YUM.

This is all you need for the filling, and it's made with traditional pie crust - not graham cracker.

So, get your ingredients and be ready to try out a new pie for the holidays!


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Gratitude Giving...Again!


for today, for lessons learned yesterday, and opportunities tomorrow brings.

With a
heart you can overcome feelings of stress and worry.

Gratitude inspires feelings of


Gratitude gives you a sense of fullness and

Gratitude also inspires you to
that you'll continue to be supported on your journey

through this

You can
that gratitude will
give you a
and give your

Gratitude will make your life glow with

and true

The Give-away...
How about a scrap shirt?! You can choose which words you like best from all those above, and of course, this little book that I like so well. Please leave a comment here
today (Wednesday) through Friday. Say something you're grateful for today. On Saturday I'll draw the name of the winner. Yahoo!
(a little scrap shirt info...)

Paddywacks Scrap Shirts are womens' tee-shirts, and come in sizes S,M,L, and XL (I have a couple of them in 2XL also). They are one-of-a-kind, so the word you pick in your size may not look exactly like what is pictured here. :) Scrap shirts are made from re-purposed tee-shirt letters - each shirt is designed and sewn by me. :)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Gratitude Drawing Winner...

Daniel reached his cute fingers into this little cup and pulled out the winner. And the winner is.... Bethie!! Bethie is from Colorado, and has a darling shop called Chic Junque and a fun blog. Bethie, I'll be e-mailing you today. :)

Because Daniel couldn't stop at just one (he's two, remember), I decided to draw two names this time. The second winner can choose from the two goodies that remain after Bethie has made her choice. What fun....and the second winner is....Katie Nash!! Katie lives right here in my very own town, and her Dad is my very own big brother - well, what do you know?:) I'll convo ya, Katie!
Thanks for playing, everyone!!
Later today (after I snap some photos) I'll post about the next give-away drawing. This is so much fun...check in again tomorrow so you can enter your name! :)
Today I'm grateful for

This is our front door today. I'm really grateful for our home - it's our dream home, really. We've been working on our home addition for about two years, and it's several months behind schedule- not finished yet, not sure when it will be. I'm taking advice from the "Attitudes of Gratitude" book and living in the "moment" and realizing all the things I have to be thankful for today, even through the predicament of ongoing construction and quickly approaching holidays. My new house will be so spacious! We'll (someday) have every type of room we want. What a blessing. I'm so thankful for this... :)
Look at the houses I've lived in during my adult (married) life...
I really liked all of them, by the way, because I love the "cottage" feel.

Flagstaff, Arizona - this was an old carriage house.

Jackson, Wyoming - I lived at the theater where I performed nightly and managed the theater box office during the day. I lived upstairs...

Bloom Cottage - I had three kids in this tiny house. We had fun flower gardens!

This (below) is a 1920's bungalow that we renovated. Before we painted, the house was this horrible chalky black color - just like a chalkboard. So, we enjoyed drawing on it for quite some time...until it was painted a cheerful "butter yellow".
And, here is my home now, this morning.
The outside is mostly finished - everything to the right of the white van is new.
It's exciting to have lots of space, but that's not what makes a home wonderful....
I'm really grateful for my home, but mostly for the love and people that fill it up!
Home's not merely four square walls,
Though with pictures hung and gilded;
Home is where Affection calls-
Filled with shrines the Hearth had builded!
Home! Go watch the faithful dove,
Sailing 'neath the heaven above us.
Home is where there's one to love!
Home is where there's one to love us.
Home's not merely roof and room,
It needs something to endear it;
Home is where the heart can bloom,
Where there's some kind lip to cheer it!
What is home with none to meet,
None to welcome, none to greet us?
Home is sweet, and only sweet,
Where there's one we love to meet us!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Gratitude Give-away!

It's time for the great gratitude give-away! Just because I really enjoy this book, and I'm turning 40 in 40 days, and this is my favorite month. Who even needs a reason to give something away? It's just so much fun! I got my little box of fresh, new copies of this book yesterday in the mail - we are good to go!

I read this little book every year. It contains inspiring thoughts, and stories - and some angles on gratitude that I had never really considered. I love to read it this time of year because it gets my attitude set up for the holiday season. This book contains spiritual ideas, but is written for all denominations - so it's easy to make those spiritual thoughts apply to whatever your
religion may be. I just love it. :)

Give-away guidelines:

There will be three separate drawings - comments left today, Friday, 11/7, through Sunday, 11/9, will be used for the first drawing which will happen on Monday morning.

You get to choose (from the three below) which Paddywacks Studio goodie you'd like to have with your book. Yahoo!

I'll post the info for the second drawing on Monday, 11/10. Keep checking the blog! :)
Here are the Paddywacks goodies you can choose from:

Planner cover! This cover fits well on three kinds of planners (about 4"x8") that are available at many places. I include a specific list of those planners. I personally use the Staples store brand monthly/weekly planner. Fun!

Inside of the cover...

Paddywacks "adorable apron". This is a men's dress shirt re-creation! You'll see many parts of the men's shirt in this apron. I wear mine all the time while I'm working around the house - I love the big pockets. :)

The last item is this little zippered and lined cosmetic pouch. It's lined with a nice blue color reclaimed tee-shirt fabric (all my Paddywacks words and letters are taken from, or printed on reclaimed tee-shirts).
There you have it!
Leave a comment. Don't be shy :)
Tell us something you're grateful for -
Tell me which goodie you'd like to have -
I'll post the results and get the address on Monday.
Have a wonderful weekend!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Spooky Wrap-up (and the give-away)!

Just thought I'd share a little Halloween fun, since I posted about costumes earlier. I got a camera worked out, so I was able to take some shots before everyone left for the weekend.
Colette was "Penelope", from the movie that came out earlier this year. What an easy costume! We got a piggie nose, and a jacket from my closet - done. It was a fun movie, by the way. Emmalyn was the Tooth Fairy. We made over an old formal - those shiny things on the bottom are big teeth shapes. You can't see the little wings sewn onto the dress in the was a great costume for a big girl wearing to school all day. She said this is her last year for costumes (wow- my little girl is really growing up).

Dawson really wanted to be Gandoolf. From Lord of the Rings - not sure how you spell that!
He was so cute in his get-up. People thought he was father time, an elf, etc. etc.
It was a crack-up! I made his costume (tunic and robe) from a king size sheet from the thrift, and a little bias tape. I think he's planning on sporting his beard again sometime at the end of December, with a red hat....this kid loves to pretend!
Dawson is really organized, too. He sorted out all of his candy. I told him that he can have only 5 pieces each day.

So he put 5 pieces each in little bags and got them all ready for the week.
That's my boy!

Daniel was a pirate. My Mom said that he kept his hat and eye patch on for a long time - wow.
I made his costume from an inexpensive sweat suit from Wal Mart. I like to use "real" clothes for the little ones that like to play in costumes for a few weeks after Halloween. His little coat is made with the sweat shirt inside-out and backwards because there was a silk screened image on the front of it. It worked great with red bias tape and brass grommets. I'm getting less and less afraid of cutting things up!
Hubby and I didn't go out of town (like we'd planned). We calculated all the furniture we could buy with the money we would have spent, and decided to go that route. Smart, we are. :)
We had a lovely time shopping together - working on our home addition.
Just another teaser for my first blog give-away!!
Love this book - so I'm actually going to give three of them, each with a Paddywacks Studio goodie. That's three separate drawings. Since I don't have that many readers, your odds are pretty good! Leave a comment...

Official give-away starts tomorrow - check in for pictures and instructions, then leave your comments
through the weekend.
Have fun! :)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

We Made Brownies...

Tonight I'm grateful for:
Our Blessed Land of the Free.
The chance we all have to vote.
The election is finally over.
So, we made brownies to celebrate this historic election.
No matter who your favorite candidate was, this is a very special time in history!
And...this is my FAVORITE month!!
Why? Holiday warm feelings, family, food, and fun times.
This month I'll be sharing recipes. My favorite carrot cake (above),
and my favorite chocolate pie (below).
These are seriously fabulous recipes! You must try them - so check in often!!

And, I've begun my annual reading of this book ...

I read this every November. It's a great little book - so inspiring. It's easy to read, with nice little chapters that you can jump around and skim, or read straight through and soak in.
I just really feel that focusing on gratitude is the very best way to overcome the worry we may feel during these unstable economic times. And, if the holidays are not quite as "care-free" this year as they were last year - well, more attention to an "attitude of gratitude" may be just the thing to bring in some sweet peace, and the warmth and love of the holidays.
In fact, to celebrate this month of gratitude,
I think I'll have my first give-away!!
A copy of the book, and.....wait and see!
Happy November. hehe