Baked Shrimp in Tomato Feta Sauce
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 14.5-ounce cans of diced tomatoes
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
1 Tbsp minced fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried dill
1 to 1 1/4 pounds medium sized raw shrimp, peeled and deveined (can leave tails on), thaw if frozen
Pinch of salt, more to taste
Pinch black pepper, more to taste
3 ounces feta cheese (about 2/3 cup, crumbled)
1 Preheat oven to 425°F. Heat oil in a large, oven-proof skillet on medium high heat. Add the onions and cook until softened, 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds more.
2 Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer, reduce heat and let simmer for 5-10 minutes, until the juices thicken a bit.
3 Remove from heat. Stir in the herbs, shrimp, feta cheese, and salt and pepper to taste. Place pan in oven and bake, uncovered, until shrimp are cooked through, about 10-12 minutes.
Serve immediately. Serve with crusty French or Italian loaf bread, pasta, or rice.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Posted by Judith at 1:32 PM
Sunday, November 29, 2009
I just have to tell every one that the tree you see in my living room is a FAKE!
I do not condone, or will I NEVER, kill a live tree to decorate my living room!!!!!
How could I call myself a witch, and kill a living tree???
I don't care if they are raised for chopping down/or if someone else cuts them down!!!!!!.... maybe if less people buy live tree's they would be free to grow and live!!!!
Sorry, my opinion, everyone does what they want, but in my mind and heart, I can't kill something that's alive and green!
I will gather branches that are in the way and have to be pruned, or have fallen off, to decorate or make wreaths...
Hence, why I gather pine cones to fill the house with the Christmas smell.
Posted by Judith at 12:29 PM
Saturday, November 28, 2009
What to do with all those Holiday leftovers?
I made two big meals for the "boy" coming home... one was the stuffed cabbage, and then the roast pork with veggies.
Now, he did a good job on finishing almost everything off. Kid can eat!!!!
But I had like 1 1/2 heads of cabbage (just the smaller parts I didn't use for the stuffed cabbage, since I only use the bigger leaves) and the Juice from the cooked stuffed cabbage that he so conveniently left in the fridge.
(figured that out when I tried to find a stuffed cabbage in the juice, and they were all gone!)
So, what I did was chop up the cabbage and put it all in a big pot. I added 2 cans of stewed tomatoes, the left over juice, the left over carrots and celery from the roast, covered it all with water, and cooked, and simmered, it on the stove for about 2 hours.
Result. Rich hardy cabbage soup, that I can freeze in portions just big enough for me!
It'll be nice, when the weather turns colder, to have some hot soup for my dinner. I never waste anything! While a man will almost never use up the leftovers, I made enough out of it to last me almost all winter!
Posted by Judith at 5:07 PM
Friday, November 27, 2009
I went with a smaller tree this year. The big one took up too much space, and since I'm not planning any holiday parties... I figured I would go with the smaller one.
Though I did notice the star is sliver, and the rest of the tree is in tones of gold... so I'll go get some spray paint and fix that next week.
The pine cones I gathered a month ago, I put in a basket and added some Holiday flowers... the pine scent is filling the house!
My Ugly frog Santa cookie Jar! Barb got me this last year, he's kinda scary looking, but he's a real sweetie! GIGGLE
It's a little hard to see....but that black lump under the tree is Merlin! He doesn't mind that it's not a real tree.... it's HIS tree! Every year he fights me putting the presents under the tree... he thinks only his furry butt should be there!
Posted by Judith at 3:40 PM
Posted by Judith at 6:47 AM
My daughter posted some pic's of the girls, and I wanted to share them with you.
Since the only picture you've seen of Morganna is when she was in the hospital after the stroke and surgeries.... here's one of her (on the left) now!
Doesn't she look FANTASTIC?? The little sweetie next to her is my other granddaughter Lizzy!
What a difference a few months, and lots of physical therapy can make!
In the far background is my grandson Sabation...the only one missing is Joshua the baby
Posted by Judith at 4:24 AM
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving.
Now, I normally don't celebrate, cause.... well, can't eat Turkey or potatoes... so what's the use?
But Matt's home, so I dug out a Fresh Pork picnic ham and I'm going to cook that up. If you want the recipe, I posted it in July on my blog, so you can look it up.
I'm roasting it with lots of garlic and rosemary, and carrots and celery in the pan.
I'm also making some sauerkraut with European dried mushrooms... to sort of make up for the lack of potatoes. And that's it.
And since I couldn't resist, I got the Cranberry sauce...
Hay, it's not just for Turkey you know.... tastes fantastic with fresh pork!
Posted by Judith at 10:02 AM
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Well the "boy" has been home 3 days now.
And so far he's gone through 3 bottles of my iced tea (make it myself, lasts almost 2 weeks) 1 bottle of my tang, half of the food in my freezer.... Has interrupted me 5 times during my TV time... with prattles about Calculus and Arabic (this is the 2nd language he's taken, Chinese drove me nuts)
And Merlin was ecstatic to see him.... he's now over the "boy" and wants him to leave him alone, and give him back his bed. giggle
Plus, he comments on all my phone calls, cause there is no where in the house I can go that he won't hear me on the phone (why? good hearing I guess) And he's sat on Merlin's "Blankie" that did not go over well with Merlin. LOL
Soooooooo looking forward to driving him back to school on Sunday!!!!!!!!
I want my privacy back!!!!! giggle
Posted by Judith at 11:24 AM
Monday, November 23, 2009
Posted by Judith at 6:58 PM
Sunday, November 22, 2009
There are millions of ways to make stuffed cabbage. My mom was a busy mother of 2 but she did it the hard, long way.
When I started making it I had 3 kids, and I figured out a way to get the same taste as hers, but much shorter making time..... so here's MY way of doing it.
1 large head of cabbage
3 cans of Campbell's cream of tomato soup
1 rack of spare ribs, pork (cut in sections of 3 or 4 ribs)
1 large can of sauerkraut (gotta be the can, the large one, brand doesn't matter)
1 onion (chopped up in bits)
1 1/2 lbs of meat loaf mix.... beef, veal, and pork mixed together (you can use regular beef, but the outcome is hard, using the mix makes the insides soft and yummy)
In a large pot, put the pork ribs, cut up in sections, on the bottom of the pot. (these are the thin ribs with the bones, that's important since the bones get soft and you munch on them for the healthy marrow)
Take a sharp knife and core the cabbage, then put it in the microwave, and heat on high for 10-20 minutes.
(take out after 10 min. and remove softened leaves, and put back in again till more leaves are just soft enough to fold without breaking, they don't have to be cooked all the way) Keep doing this till you wilt all the leaves
In a bowl mix the meat loaf meat with salt, pepper, chopped onions. (no I don't use rice!!!)
Lay the wilted leaves of the cabbage down and put a good amount of the beef mixture at the bottom, roll the leaf, then tuck the edges in, and finish rolling.
Place each filled leaf on top of the ribs, seam side down
when you finish doing all the leaves, add the can of sauerkraut, fill with water to cover, and about 4 inch's over them. (also add any extra cabbage, chopped)
add the cans of tomato soup (un-deluded) Just pour on top, when it comes to a boil the soup will mix with the water.
Allow to boil at least 1/2 hour, then lower to a simmer, and keep cooking for 2 hours.
The hardest part is micowaving the cabbage, since you want nice whole leaves to wrap the meat.
There you have it, and be grateful, some of my mothers recipes are even harder to understand... like her Easter cheese, that simply says,
"put cheese in bag, put rock on top" That one took forever to figure out! GIGGLE
Posted by Judith at 4:44 AM
Saturday, November 21, 2009
UGH! Vacation.... the word that sends shutters in each and every mother!!!
It's Thanksgiving vacation, and the "Boy" is coming home!!!!
It's just for a few days....but I have soooooooooo gotten used to the peace and quiet of an empty house!!! Now he's going to be here today, and the noise and talking, and blaring TV, and the mass consumption of foods, will begin!
Sigh, I'm such a bad mother.... but it was so nice here!
I just have to keep repeating my mantra..."It's only for a week, it's only for a week, it's only for a week.........."
I just had to add, that I felt so guilty about not wanting him home,,,, I'm making his favorite food... stuffed cabbage with ribs and sauerkraut.... takes for EVER to make, so I think that is enough penance! giggle
Posted by Judith at 4:46 AM
Friday, November 20, 2009
Of course, that picture above isn't ME!!! I swear it isn't!!!! Well, maybe it is...but I was FORCED to wear that costume....DRUGGED... yes, that's it.... they drugged me!
I'm trying to contain my enthusiasm.....since it's like 8 MONTHS to my Star Trek convention in July!!!!
But, I think that because I missed the one this summer, I am over excited about going to he next one! And seeing the new star trek movie didn't do anything but make me MORE EXCITED!
LOL see, I have no life!!!! The convention is so far away, I shouldn't even been thinking about it, but I did reserve the room at the hotel two months ago! Getting a room at Shore Leave (that's the convention..http://www.shore-leave.com/) is sometimes almost impossible! The hotel sells out really fast, so I moved like a striking snake an grabbed a room. giggle
And one of you gals.... you know who you are...http://spiritofhalloween.blogspot.com/.... is not helping me at all!!!
I gave her a idea for a costume at her Star Trek con.... and now I'm thinking....
I haven't been in the "masquerade" contest at my Star Trek con in like 15 years!!!!! Maybe I should steal the idea I gave her and enter the contest myself!!!!
And on top of that, I found myself rooting in my closet for my Trek clothing!
You see I have a special place in my closet where I put new outfits that I don't want to ruin by wearing...(hanging my head in shame) so that I can have them in pristine condition for the Convention!
I refuse to wear star trek tee shirts and take on the unwashed, grungy persona that some people look at the conventions
And I insist on wearing NICE, NEW, AND CLASSY clothing! Short skirts are optional, but V necks and push up bra's are a must! GIGGLE
So, I'm going to try and calm down now, no need to check out clothing, or to think of costume idea's.... is there? I mean, how much of a geek can I be?
Posted by Judith at 7:09 AM
Posted by Judith at 3:05 AM
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I was reading a nice Lady's blog...http://moontides-mxtodis123.blogspot.com/... and she was talking about becoming a crone and becoming the "invisible woman"
She's quite right, we do tend to become invisible as we get older, but I think it's more in our minds.... and transfers to our body's.
Now I have noticed, once or twice, that that seems to be happening.... but I'm not one to take such things lightly.... and I needed to shake up the bottle and see where it spirts!
I've never been the "normal" one in the group. I've been chubby since my son was born, and I'm not too tall.... so sometimes people look past me, instead of at me... AND I DON'T LIKE THAT!
So I checked myself out, and notice that I've changed!!!!!
I'd stopped wearing high heels (my poor tired feet) and stopped wearing makeup, and I let my hair go gray.... and I had just sunk into the (normal) depression that older women get.
Oh, and worst of all... I stopped wearing my V neck tops to show off my bounteous bosom!!!
Once I took that ,I said....FUCKING NO WAY!!!!!!
I've always prided myself in looking younger then the people I grew up with, and here I was letting MYSELF down!
I don't give a fig what others think of me, but my sinking into "Cronehood" was of my own making.... how rude of me!
dyed my hair, even though I liked the gray, I started checking my appearance when I go out.
First I started off by having my morning coffee........ then putting my makeup on! Doesn't matter if I'm going out or staying in, I slathered the makeup on... and I started feeling perkier.
Then I took out the shoes with the heels and left them out! I may walk around the house in my slippers....but if the doorbell rings, or even if I just go out to get the mail...the heels go on!!!
Or my sneakers with the skull and cross bones on them! Love those Goth sneakers!
Another thing I noticed is that I stopped wearing all my silver jewelry!!! Why? I have no idea, just seemed like too much work to get it out and put it on.
So today I took it all out and "adorned" myself!
I noticed it most today when I went to wall mart. I no longer had to wonder around to find someone to help me. I walked tall, and every time I stopped at a department, help came right up to me.
Like I said, I don't like to go unnoticed.
And yes, I'm tired, and I have a bad back and a bum hip and knee....but I'm not going to let others see me hobble around. It may just be make believe, but when I'm out I'm TALL and PROUD, AND SEXY AS ALL GET OUT!
Take THAT, my inner old crone! I'm not giving into you anymore! :P
Posted by Judith at 6:32 PM
Being an older woman, who actually watched the first ever episode of Star Trek, and became a fan right there and then.....
I was very Leary of watching the new star trek movie. I loved my old guys, and never actually got in to the other star trek spin off..... so I figured that move would never be ""STAR TREK""
BOY WAS I WRONG!!!!! LOVED, LOVED, LOVED IT!!!
If you haven't seen it, watch it!
Posted by Judith at 2:47 PM
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Posted by Judith at 6:02 AM
Monday, November 16, 2009
I guess the new moon is affecting me badly this month.
I am not comfortable in my own skin. Really! I itch all over, I'm moody, and pouty, and all together not happy!
Like everything around me is just slightly skewed!
I feel like I need to be somewhere....FAST! But, don't have a clue where I'm supposed to be or where I should go.
It's very aggravating.
My old fantasy keeps coming into my mind, that after my operation when I was 8, I fell into a coma...AND AM STILL IN ONE!
Like all this is a dream.... and not the best dream either! GIGGLE
Weird huh? Well, I'm hoping it's just the new moon, and will pass. Cause this is very nerve wracking.
And I feel like my nerve's are down to a thin coating, and I can feel everything!!!! Even the air moving across my skin.
Having had this before, and pretty sure that I'm NOT still in a coma from that operation.... I know this will pass in a few days.
So, I'm going to eat junk food, sulk on the sofa while watching endless crap on the TV, talk to my cat a lot more then he likes, and in general try to stay away from people!!!! Sigh
Posted by Judith at 11:18 AM
Sunday, November 15, 2009
I have a large "lamp post planter" that I got a few years ago. It's actually two planters that fit together around a lamp post or any kind of pole, and makes it look like one solid planter.
Over the years it has had a lot of different flowers in it. Mostly Cosmo's. I love their color. And a large Sedum has taken over one side of the planter.... and that's cool with me.... nice colors, and greenery! What more can you ask for.
This summer I had Chives and cosmo's in the front side, looked good, but I wanted to try something different.... so I planted chionodoxa bulbs in the front part this morning.
bluish/purple flowers with white centers. They say they are really early bloomers, before the leaves come out on the trees.... so it should look good there in the early spring.
I have to admit not having a talent with bulbs. (except for tiger Lily's)
Any other type of plant thrives with my care....but bulbs seem to flower once, and disappear! Not that I'm complaining since every thing else does fantastic.... I don't mind having a black "Pinkie" where bulbs are concerned. So lets hope we get at least one flowering out of these guys!
Posted by Judith at 10:57 AM
Saturday, November 14, 2009
The holidays are here again – time to think up some fun gift ideas for your friends and family members. Why not consult the stars this year? Considering the astrological birth signs of those on your gift list is a great way to get your gift-giving in gear!
Aries (March 21- April 19)
Active Aries is always looking for ways to stay in shape, particularly during the holiday season... so athletic equipment is usually a good choice. People born under this sign are also fond of the color red, so a cranberry scarf or a scarlet hat could win their favor. If romance is in the air, let Aries know that you put his or her needs first. Buy tickets for two to a sporting event you loathe... or a CD by an artist you can't stand... to win big points with your favorite Ram.
Taurus (April 20 - May 20)
Taurus appreciates any gift that appeals to his or her sensual side. A box of gourmet chocolates, a richly colored tapestry or a soft cashmere blanket are all great options for Bulls. This sign also enjoys having money to play with, so a gift certificate to their favorite store is a welcome option. Always remember that quality is more important than quantity – Taurus would rather have a small bottle of expensive cologne than a carafe of the cheap stuff.
Gemini (May 21 - June 20)
Quick-witted Geminis enjoys gifts that appeal to their sizable intellects. A challenging book is always welcome, as is a magazine subscription. This sign rules the hands, so some scented hand lotion or a sparkling ring might delight. Geminis also love to entertain, so a set of glassware might fit the bill. If you want to splurge on a special Twin, give them the latest cell phone or PDA, so they can keep in touch with their gazillion friends.
Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
Sentimental Cancer loves gifts that have personal meaning. Handmade items always delight, whether it's a finger painting, angora sweater or mincemeat pie. This sign also has a special affinity for silver – a monogrammed hand mirror or picture frame would be very well received. Since Crabs have an affinity for liquids of all kinds, a special bottle of wine, a fancy cappuccino maker or a shiny tea kettle are also good possibilities. And don't forget that these Moon children love the domestic arts – a cookbook specializing in comfort food is another sure winner.
Leo (July 23 - August 22)
Lions love gifts that make them look and feel terrific. Hair accessories, cosmetics and grooming items are all good choices for this image-conscious sign. Leos love drama, and enjoy presents that involve a bit of flair. Opera tickets, gold jewelry or animal print lingerie are right up this cat's alley. Leos also love to gamble, so a sheaf of lottery tickets or a weekend getaway to the casino could make them purr with delight. When shopping for clothing, remember that Lions have a special affinity for red, gold and purple.
Virgo (August 23 - September 22)
Virgins love practical gifts...so avoid dust-catching baubles. A bread-making machine or a power drill would be equally welcome. These folks are also known to pride themselves on their impeccable appearance. Scented soaps, lotions and shampoos made by an earth-friendly company might be just the ticket. Virgos are also incredibly organized and might appreciate a good watch or a leather-bound date book. Or try a health-conscious basket of organic foodstuffs.
Libra (September 23 - October 22)
Librans have a special affinity for music, and always appreciate a good CD to add to their voluminous collection. If you want to do something really special for a Libran friend, splurge on a two concert tickets – this sign hates to do anything alone. Born beneath the sign of the scales, they also need plenty of balance in their lives, so a pair of candlesticks or bookends might appeal. If you're still stumped for ideas, have a lavish bouquet of red roses delivered accompanied by a loving handwritten note.
Scorpio (October 23 - November 21)
Scorpions are secretive by nature and enjoy gifts that obscure their appearance in some way. A pair of designer sunglasses, a filmy scarf or a slouchy hat are all great choices for this sign. These mystery-lovers also enjoy moody, atmospheric stories. A collection of film noirs on DVD are sure to go over well with your favorite Scorpion. The rumors concerning this sign's sexual appetite are happily true, so seductive lingerie would get plenty of use. Since Scorpions also like to get beneath the surface; a gift certificate for a deep-cleansing facial will be appreciated.
Sagittarius (November 22 - December 21)
As far as Archers are concerned, half the fun of getting gifts is ripping them open! If Sag doesn't like a present, though, he or she will tell you outright. Avoid awkward scenes this holiday season by giving this outdoor enthusiast some camping equipment. Hiking boots or a water-proof parka would also be appropriate. These animal lovers adore any gift associated with their pets. A calendar filled with pictures of dogs or horses is sure to elicit a big smile. Finally, you can always feed this sign's wanderlust with a comprehensive atlas.
Capricorn (December 22 - January 19)
Career-oriented Capricorn always enjoys gifts that will boost their job status. A leather laptop carrier or monogrammed briefcase would be welcome. Contrary to popular belief, though, Goats aren't all work and no play. This sign is blessed with a wicked sense of humor, so try the BBC's "The Office" series on DVD. Capricorns also love luxurious presents they'd never buy for themselves, like a silk bathrobe.
Aquarius (January 20 - February 18)
You never know what this unpredictable sign will be doing from moment to moment – one week it's skydiving and the next it's yoga! Still, this quirky sign always appreciates technological gadgets, whether it's an all-region DVD player or an iPod Nano. If you'd like to choose something a little more personal, why not make a photo album detailing all of your exploits with the Water-Bearer? Aquarius may not show it, but they harbor a special fondness for their friends. Still stumped for ideas? A basket filled with brand new socks is both weird and practical enough for this sign, which rules the ankles.
Pisces (February 19 - March 20)
These mystics love gifts of all kinds, but especially ones that help them escape the harsh realities of life. A bottle of champagne, a kaleidoscope or a book of fairy tales will appeal to your Fishy friends. And because Pisces is a Water sign, it's a good bet they'll appreciate bath salts, foaming cleansers and shower gels. If you'd like to give something really special, a digital camera will make a bit hit with this natural-born photographer. Looking for a romantic gift? Choose a gilt-edged volume of love poetry.
Posted by Judith at 4:05 PM
Thursday, November 12, 2009
I couldn't decide on a color, so this "Old Dog" went with what I used before.... same color....
I couldn't get a picture with my camera (my arms aren't long enough!) so this is a picture from last year..... Just picture my hair really short!!!!
Same color, but much, much shorter. If I can find someone to take a picture... I'll show one with the shorter hair.
Posted by Judith at 1:45 PM
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Yesterday was warm but the wind was blowing, and it was the perfect day to winterize my house!
First thing I did was close all the doors and windows. Then I lit a candle (regular candle, not one in a jar) And I walked around the house watching the flame!
when I noticed the flame flickering or blowing, I tracked the source, and fixed it.
Always check the track on your windows before closing them for the winter: dirt and debris build up in the track and prevent the windows from closing properly, allowing air to come in. (I've found durt, bugs, crickets, and seed pods in there!)
I washed out all the window tracks and then closed and locked them again, and checked with the candle. No fluttering flame!
Then I checked around the doors.
Stepping back from the closed door I checked if I saw any light coming around the edges. If you do, buy some vinyl foam weatherseal. Long foam strips, that are self adhesive on one side. Open the door, and stick the weatherseal around the inside frame of the door where you saw the light..... close the door and check again to see if you can see any light, and if you do, repeat in the area.
My front door was horrible!!! the weather seal had fallen off and the breeze thru that door was strong! So I replaced the seal, and not a flicker on the candle!
Now, I CAN'T sleep with my bedroom window closed!!! I'd rather freeze then have no air flow around me. Also I open the kitchen sink window a lot in the winter.... just to air out the house a bit... but I try to do this on warm days, and I make sure the heat is off before I do it. Hay, can't waste energy!
I slowly walked around the house and checked all the other doors and window. that done, I feel that my house is safe from errant breezes during the winter.
Before I close up for the winter I also do a good dusting (with a damp cloth) of all my furniture, the heating vents, window sills, and so on..... getting all the summer pollen and dust up, so the heat doesn't keep recirculating it all winter. The damp cloth traps the dust, and then you just rinse it down the sink.
I also do a very good vacuuming... making sure to get all those little edges (cat fur seems to hide in the edges of your carpet and corners of the room) I do the baseboards with the vacuum too, and if you have hot air heat... open the vents and put the vacuum hose down into them to pick up any dust pooled down there!
And last I take all the bedspreads and comforters outside and shake the devil out of them!!!! dust flys all over, but I know it's gone with the wind! GIGGLE
Now, I'm ready to start the winter in a dust free, cat fur free home. Let that heat recirculate the air.... It's actually clean!
Monday, November 09, 2009
Yule - Winter Solstice
Yule: the Winter Solstice, Yuletide (Teutonic), Alban Arthan (Caledonii)
December 20 - 23 Northern Hemisphere / June 20 - 23 Southern Hemisphere
This sabbath represents the rebirth of light. Here, on the longest night of the year, the Goddess gives birth to the Sun God and hope for new light is reborn.
Yule is a time of awakening to new goals and leaving old regrets behind. Yule coincides closely with the Christian Christmas celebration. Christmas was once a movable feast celebrated many different times during the year. The choice of December 25 was made by the Pope Julius I in the fourth century AD because this coincided with the pagan rituals of Winter Solstice, or Return of the Sun. The intent was to replace the pagan celebration with the Christian one.
The Christian tradition of a Christmas tree has its origins in the Pagan Yule celebration. Pagan families would bring a live tree into the home so the wood spirits would have a place to keep warm during the cold winter months. Bells were hung in the limbs so you could tell when a spirit was present.
Food and treats were hung on the branches for the spirits to eat and a five-pointed star, the pentagram, symbol of the five elements, was placed atop the tree.
The colors of the season, red and green, also are of Pagan origin, as is the custom of exchanging gifts.
A solar festival, The reindeer stag is also a reminder of the Horned God. You will find that many traditional Christmas decorations have some type of Pagan ancestry or significance that can be added to your Yule holiday.
Yule is celebrated by fire and the use of a Yule log. Many enjoy the practice of lighting the Yule Log. If you choose to burn one, select a proper log of oak or pine (never Elder). Carve or chalk upon it a figure of the Sun (a rayed disc) or the Horned God (a horned circle). Set it alight in the fireplace at dusk, on Yule. This is a graphic representation of the rebirth of the God within the sacred fire of the Mother Goddess. As the log burns, visualize the Sun shining within it and think of the coming warmer days. Traditionally, a portion of the Yule Log is saved to be used in lighting next year's log. This piece is kept throughout the year to protect the home.
The Winter Solstice has been celebrated for millennia by cultures and religions all over the world. Many modern pagan religions are descended in spirit from the ancient pre-Christian religions of Europe and the British Isles, and honor the divine as manifest in nature, the turning of the seasons, and the powerfully cyclical nature of life.
The Goddess is most often represented in the earth as a planet, the moon, the oceans, and in the domestic animals and the cultivated areas of the earth.
In many pagan traditions the Winter Solstice symbolizes the rebirth of the sun god from his mother, the earth goddess.
The Winter Solstice is only one of eight seasonal holidays celebrated by modern pagans.
One example of a Winter Solstice reading:
This is the night of the Solstice, the longest night of the year. Now darkness triumphs, yet gives way and changes into light. The breath of Nature is suspended: all waits while within the Cauldron, the Dark King is transformed into the infant light. We watch for the coming of Dawn, when the great Mother again gives birth to the Divine child Sun, who is bringer of hope and the promise of summer. This is the stillness behind motion, when time itself stops; the center, which is also the circumference of all. We are awake in the Night. We turn the Wheel to bring the Light. We call the sun from the womb of night.
1/2 bag fresh cranberries
3 lg stalks celery
3-4 large carrots
1 large orange
1 can crushed pineapples
1 cup chopped pecans (or walnuts, your preference)
1 large (or 2 small) box raspberry, or raspberry-cranberry Jello
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
Open can of pineapples and drain, saving the juice. Put aside. Mix the saved juice from the pineapples and 1 cup of cold water together.
Prepare Jello according to directions, but where the directions call for 2 cups cold water, use the 1 cup cold water/pineapple juice mixture. Before you add the cold mixture to the hot, add the sugar to the hot Jello mixture, and dissolve, then add cold water/pineapple juice mixture, combine well and refrigerate. Be sure to put into a large salad or mixing bowl.
Shred the carrots finely - put aside.
Finely chop celery with a knife or food processor.
Chop or crush walnuts
Grate orange peel with fine grater (a cheese grater will do).
Peel orange and clean as much of the pith (the white stuff) away as possible, and section by hand.
In a blender put the cranberries, one handful at a time into the water and chop finely. Add the orange sections and chop more coarsely (using the pulse button on your blender). Add to the Jello mixture. Add all other ingredients to the Jello mixture and mix well. Refrigerate over night.
Topping for salad:
You may top with whipped cream or Cool Whip, or try this:
1 cup sour cream
1 cup real mayonnaise
Blend well and place by the tablespoonful on top of the gelled salad. Enjoy!! Happy Yule!
1 gallon apple cider
1 fifth Captain Morgan's Spiced Rum
2 sticks cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
cinnamon to taste
1 medium peice of ginger root
A piece of cheese cloth or a coffee filter
Tie all dry ingredients up in the cheese cloth or coffee filter. Put the rum and apple cider in a large pot and bring to a slow boil. Add the dry pouch and simmer for an hour. Serve hot.
1 dozen cooking apples
1 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons cinnamon
butter or margarine
3/4 cup boiling water
2 tablespoons sugar
Core apples and place in an 8 X 8 inch baking pan. Mix sugar and cinnamon, fill apples with mixture, dot tops with butter. Add boiling water and sugar to pan and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 to 60 minutes.
Posted by Judith at 7:16 PM
Sunday, November 08, 2009
The frogs and I are not amused... we are getting board, and it's time for a change!
That phrase usually send my friends screaming into the night. They have been known to hide, not answer my calls, and suddenly have bad back, or sprained necks... so they wouldn't have to help me move.
But, its OK, I'm not thinking of moving again...I SWEAR! I'm very happy here.... but as the seasons change, I feel the overwhelming need to change too.
Sometimes it's just simple things... coloring my hair, moving furniture around, panting a room, changing just one room with curtins and rugs.
Sometimes it's bigger things... like the time I removed those ridicules kitchen cabinets that were over my breakfast bar.
And yes, I admit, that a FEW of those times I moved, changing house's and states..... leaving the old behind for the new.
But this time, though it's pretty strong, I won't move!
BUT BOY AM I TEMPTED!!!! I've been here 7 years! Longer than any place I've stayed! But, no, I like it here.... it's just my LIFE that needs changing!!!
What should I do??? what do I want??? I haven't a clue, but I'm going to think on it.... and I'll let you know.
Posted by Judith at 6:53 PM
Saturday, November 07, 2009
You might be a REDNECK if...
...you've ever raked leaves in your kitchen.
You might be a REDNECK if...
...during your senior year you and your mother had homeroom together.
You might be a REDNECK if...
...there is a gun rack on your bicycle
You might be a REDNECK if...
...you've ever financed a tattoo.
You might be a REDNECK if...
...you prefer to walk the excess length off your jeans rather than hem them
You might be a REDNECK if...
...your coffee table used to be a cable spool.
You might be a REDNECK if...
...you've ever barbecued Spam on the grill.
You might be a REDNECK if...
...your baby's favorite teething ring is the garden hose in the front yard.
You might be a REDNECK if...
...you've painted a car with house paint.
You might be a REDNECK if...
...your brother-in-law is your uncle
You might be a REDNECK if...
...nailing an old tire to the front door is your idea of a Christmas Wreath.
You might be a REDNECK if...
...your Grandma is also your Great Aunt
Posted by Judith at 6:33 PM
Picture yourself near a stream.
Birds are softly chirping in the crisp cool mountain air.
Nothing can bother you here.
No one knows this secret place.
You are in total seclusion from that place called "The World."
The soothing sound of a gentle waterfall fill the air with
a cascade of serenity.
The water is clear and you can easily make out the face
of the person whose head your holding under water!
It's the person who caused you all this stress.
What a pleasant surprise!
You let them up.... just for a quick breath... then ploop!...
back under they go.
You allow yourself as many deep breaths as you want.
There now... feeling better?
Posted by Judith at 7:58 AM
Thursday, November 05, 2009
I GOT MY PRIZE TODAY!!!!
Wonderful lady at "Frog on the Pumkin" sent me a wonderful skull from leftovers at the Davis graveyard!!! If you want to check out her blog, it's on my side bar of blogs I follow.
He's very handsome, younger them my other skull... I can tell... really.... giggle.... so I'm going to name him Maxwell!
Unlike a lot of people, I keep my witchy stuff out all the time!! So rest assured, Maxwell, will be out on the table.... getting ready to "scare the straights" all year round!!!!
Posted by Judith at 12:59 PM
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
1. Disinfecting and Deodorizing Sponges
Don't throw out the kitchen sponge that smells like last night's salmon. Soak it in water spiked with white vinegar or lemon juice, then heat it on high for 1 minute. (Use an oven mitt to remove it.) This will also disinfect any sponges you used to wipe up the juices from a raw chicken.
2. Cooking an Entire Dinner in Under 10 Minutes
Not just the TV variety. We mean braised salmon with green beans and mashed potatoes. Use the microwave for any recipe that calls for braising, poaching, or steaming. Just subtract about three-quarters of the cooking time. Remember to stir liquids often to redistribute the heat, and always take the food out a minute or two before it's completely done, since it will continue to cook.
3. Disinfecting Plastic Cutting Boards
Wash the board well, rub it with the cut side of a lemon, then heat for 1 minute.
4. Making Potatoes
While the microwave won't give you a baked potato with a crisp skin, it will cook the average russet in about 4 minutes. You can simultaneously cook as many as will fit. (The general rule for heating more food is to check for doneness every 30 seconds beyond the regular cooking time.) Prick the potatoes all over with a fork and cook for 2 minutes. Turn them over and cook for 2 to 3 minutes longer. For mashed potatoes, be sure to heat the milk in the microwave before adding it. (Cold milk makes for cold mashed potatoes.)
5. Softening Brown Sugar
Keep the sugar in its plastic packaging, add a few drops of water, and heat on medium for 10 to 20 seconds.
6. Decrystallizing Honey
Honey that has solidified can be brought back to liquid life by uncovering the jar and heating on medium power for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
7. Proofing Yeast Doughs
Yeast doughs that normally take an hour or more to rise at room temperature can be proofed in the microwave in about 15 minutes. Place the dough in a very large bowl and cover with plastic. Place an 8-ounce cup of water in the back of the microwave with the bowl of dough in the center, and set the power as low as possible (10 percent power). Heat for 3 minutes, then let the dough rest in the microwave for 3 minutes. Heat for 3 minutes longer, then let rest for 6 minutes. The dough will double in bulk.
8. Heating up Health Aids
You use a microwave to reheat your coffee, so why not use it to heat and reheat gel packs for headaches? (Don't do this with a metal-wrapped pack.)
9. Warming Beauty Products
Warming up a hot-oil conditioning pack for your hair takes about 10 to 20 seconds and feels marvelous, as does briefly heating up a moisturizing facial mask. (Stir the mask and test the temperature with your finger before applying to your face.) And if hot wax hardens when you're only halfway up your calf, reheat it in the microwave. It's much less messy than using a double boiler.
10. Roasting Garlic
It takes 45 minutes to roast garlic in the oven but less than 8 in the microwave. Slice off the top of the head to reveal all the cloves. Place the head in a small, deep dish, season with salt and pepper, and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of good olive oil. Spoon 2 tablespoons of water into the bottom of the dish, cover it with plastic wrap, and cook at medium power for 7 to 7½ minutes. Let stand for a few minutes before unwrapping.
11. Partially Cooking Foods for the Grill
To cut the grilling time of vegetables, cook them partway in the microwave before putting them on the barbecue. Heat new potatoes for 2 minutes (prick them first), and bell peppers for 1 minute. And why wait until your next campfire to make s'mores? Put the marshmallows in the microwave for 30 seconds.
12. Getting More Juice From Citrus Fruits
A lemon or lime taken straight from the refrigerator is harder to juice than one left at room temperature or warmed slightly. To get the most juice, microwave citrus fruits for 20 seconds before squeezing.
13. Toasting Nuts, Bread Crumbs, and Coconut
The microwave toasts them in a quarter of the time it takes in a conventional oven. Spread them out on a plate and heat on high for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring every minute. Keep in mind that they will continue to toast for about a minute after removal.
14. Cooking Vegetables
Still waiting for that cauldron of water to boil for your corn? All vegetables can be steamed in the microwave without adding water. Place them in one layer (if possible) on a dish, cover tightly with plastic, and cook on high. The timing will vary, but check tender items, such as spinach, mushrooms, and snow peas, after 30 seconds, and crunchy ones, like carrots, after 4 minutes.
Posted by Judith at 6:09 PM