Recipe for a New Year

Recipe for a New Year

                        Take 365 days, trim off all the old memories of hate and discord. Soak and wash thoroughly in plenty of love and courage. Cut these days into 12 parts, cooking only one day at a time. Be sure the fire is hot with enthusiasm and your kettle is bright with hope. Season each kettle with some kindness for others and add patience, for small trials that come up every day. Add a little earnestness and willingness. Serve with smiles, praise and plenty of heartwarming joy, with your chin up.

                                       Author unknown

Happy New Year to all!!! It’s been an amazing journey this year and I am thankful for each and every one of you. You make my writing and blogging so much better by your comments and suggestions. A special thanks to my authors: Denise, Paul, Marybeth and of course “G”. Keep tuned – next year’s journals will be coming soon.

Peace, love and joy,


Do you collect cookbooks?

Dear Fellow Journalers,

Do you collect cookbooks for a certain cuisine, chef, ingredient (pasta), diet (low carb), item (bread) or a myriad dish like Betty Crocker? I found this topic interesting while doing research on the topic of food journaling. Apparently some people collect cookbooks like some of us collect Christmas Ornaments and for much of the same reasons.

Some people I have talked to about this subject indicate that years before they collected everything from civic organization sponsored cookbooks, Pillsbury pamphlets to “coffee table” glossy paged high-priced cookbooks. Some collect Betty Crocker cookbooks and some collect books with pictures of the finished meal for what they say is inspirational.  Some like cookbooks by certain chefs like Rachael Ray.

Some people collect cookbooks for their value. That reason really surprised me. For instance, it seems that a Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook can bring a price range between $10-$450! A trip to the local book shop confirmed my suspicion that there were hundreds of different types of cookbooks and that if one was to start a collection, they would have to narrow the field considerably and say. only specialize in a single genre or chef. The demand for a rare, good condition cookbook is fueled by the fact that once they go out of print they become increasingly difficult to find. Some astonishing facts from a web site called lists a first edition of Julia Child’s “Mastering the Art of French Cooking Vol. 1 & 2” for the staggering price of $7500!! and the “Joy of Cooking” by Irma Rombauer’s 1931 first edition at $4000!!

Happy Hunting through your kitchen, attic and basement and remember, check the pages for handwritten notes by your ancestors. You might find a hidden treasure that is priceless.

Happy Cooking and crafting,


Prize-Winning Fudge

     In my humble opinion, you must have fudge for the holidays. I have made this fudge for over 40 years and still get raves!


4 1/2 cups sugar (the real kind, not Splenda)

1 (12 oz) can Carnation evaporated milk

3 (6 oz) packages of Chocolate chips (or 1 (12 oz and 1 6 oz) I use Nestle

1 (10 oz) package mini marshmallows

1/2 cup butter

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups chopped walnuts (optional)


     Pour sugar and milk into large pan – I use a Dutch Oven). Mix well. Bring to a rolling boil over high heat, stirring occasionally. This mixture tends to bubble a lot so be sure to stay near the stove to avoid disaster! Let boil on medium heat for 8 minutes. Remove from heat and add chocolate chips, marshmallows and butter. Beat until chips and marshmallows melt. Mix in vanilla. Spread in 13″ x 9″ pam-sprayed pan. Cool and cut. I place the pan in the refrigerator to harden.

 The Best Oatmeal Raisin Cookies


1 cup butter 2 sticks
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1-1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups Quaker Oats (quick or old-fashioned uncooked
1 cup raisins or walnuts or both

350 degree oven. Beat butter and vanilla. Mix all dry into butter mixture except the nuts and raisins once mixed then add them. Ungreased cookie sheet but I use parchment paper. Bake 10-12 minutes.


Merry Christmas!

Dear Fellow Journalers,

May you have a very Merry Christmas!



Recipe for Life


Recipe for Life

          1 cup of Determination

          1 cup of Courage

          2 cups of self-awareness

          Dash of hope

     Bake in your heart and sprinkle with faith. Store in your soul.

Creating a Family Recipe Book

Dear Fellow Journalers,

A family recipe book is not actually a journal in the strictest sense, although it can be argued that your thoughts about preparing a special meal or memories of holiday cookie making marathons at your home can be a journaling experience. Either way, the creating of a family recipe book, like  Marybeth’s Treasure Box  is special.

About a year ago I started to clean out my recipe book. Actually I had to! I had received a small plastic sleeved book years ago when I was first married. It had over 50 small index sized sleeves and corresponding blank index cards upon which I had copied recipes. However, I now had over 20 cookbooks in my kitchen with various hand-written recipes placed in the pages. I needed to organize and badly! My family was growing up and I knew eventually I  would need family recipes as my daughter-in-law was always asking how I made my meatballs or salad dressing that my son liked.

I purchased a 3 ring binder with plastic cover and  a box of plastic pre-drilled 3 ring sleeves. I divided my recipes by type – meat, salads, soups etc. After deciding how many  genres I had, I decided on what color paper (from my stash) I needed for each type of food. For instance, I used red for meat, green for chicken, yellow for desserts etc. I gathered all my recipes together and proceeded to hand-write each one on lined paper. That seemed to take forever! But in the end, all of the recipes were in one place, easy to find and read, and most importantly safe from spilled ingredients! One day I went to Michael’s Craft Store for paper for a project I was working on, and found to my surprise, that the store was having a special sale on paper ” Buy 10 for $1! ” Always on the lookout for additional matte cardstock I checked out the sale. Lo and behold, there was a stash of cookbook paper! It had food words on it in various fonts – Apron, spoon, High Heat, Chicken legs, Meatballs  etc. I bought it without hesitation and one of the pages now adorns the cover of my cookbook!

If you decide that you want to try this, here are some suggestions:

Purchase a blank book with lined pages. If  you can find one with a spiral-bound spine it will be able to lay flat on a counter.

Ask your family for recipes. Read and adapt if you want. Also ask your relatives for photos and memories surrounding the recipes.

Write the recipes in your own handwriting.

Compose a forward. Leave a message in the first few pages for your family members to remember you.

Don’t limit your book to recipes only. Add kitchen tips or your opinions.

When setting up your recipes write a little description of the dish. See Denise’s comments about her salad in my December 7th post.

Write the ingredients down and instructions like a recipe. Estimate how many servings. Finish with serving suggestions ie: serve with red wine.

Happy cooking and creating!


Dinah’s Chicken

     Years ago, my husband had a good friend named Dinah. She made this dish one night and my husband raved about it so much that she finally sent me the recipe. It is a family favorite.


1 1/4# boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

2 tbl. margarine or butter, melted

1/8 tsp. garlic powder

2 tsp. dried parsley flakes

1/2 tsp. paprika

1/4 tsp. dried thyme

1 tbl. Dijon mustard- I use Grey Poupon (the one in the jar)

1 tbl. honey

Makes 2 servings. For 4-5 servings, multiply ingredients

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place chicken in Pam-sprayed shallow baking pan. Put all spices in bowl, doubling or tripling as needed. Melt butter/margarine in small microwavable bowl and add to mixture. Without rinsing, mix honey and mustard in same bowl and then add to large bowl. Mix well. Spoon over chicken. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Take off foil and re-baste with marinade. Bake again for 30 minutes. Serve over rice.

Previous Older Entries


December 2016

Blogging,crafting, journaling and writing

Uniquely Yours Cards and Crafts

Uniquely Yours Cards and Crafts ~ Celebrating all occasions with a handcrafted touch ~

A Part of Me to Share

~ a Writer's blog ~

Life Vest Inside

Listening to my heart, one journal step at a time.


Where Creativity and Imagination Creates Wonderful Ideas for Your Home!

Awaken Everyday

The Copper Beech Institute Blog

Meg Dowell Writes

Putting ideas into words.

The Daily Post

The Art and Craft of Blogging

Audrey Pettit Designs

Listening to my heart, one journal step at a time.

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