Seussian Gingerbread Houses

Seussian Gingerbread Houses

Being inspired by live-action version of The Grinch and the incredible setting of Whoville, I decided that the best thing to do would be to “embrace the imperfect”, intentionally making everything wonky and crooked. The process takes a fraction of the time. Hardly any measuring is required and there is no need for trimming to be sure everything fits perfectly. Read on to find out how to make these fun confections.

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The REAL Kringle

The REAL Kringle

For those of you familiar with Kringles and the Wisconsin bakeries that crank them out every day, you may wonder why I bother if the process is so intense. Well, it’s because “necessity is the mother of invention”. I wanted some diabetic versions for my mom but the mail-order company would only sell them in sets with flavors she didn’t want. Not to be defeated, I Googled how to make them and ironically, the recipe that showed up was from the same bakery. I adjusted it to accommodate Mom’s dietary needs and a tradition was born. So, for those who either want to make something really special for a gift or want to start a new Christmas breakfast tradition, here is how I make Kringle. By the way, the recipe makes two and I make six batches at once.

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French Onion Soup

French Onion Soup

As promised, here is my favorite French Onion Soup recipe. Years ago, when we lived in South Africa, I found it in a magazine. The author of this deliciousness was Della Smith. Also, since I have not made it in a while, I decided to use the picture from the original publication. Unfortunately, I don’t know what that was. So that is as much disclosure as I can give.

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Bootleg Instant Pot Beef Burgundy

Bootleg Instant Pot Beef Burgundy

I just made a bootleg version of Beef Burgundy in my Instant Pot and it tasted so good I just had to share it. The original recipe came from Pinterest. But I adjusted it a bunch to suit what I felt like doing and my ingredients on hand. Full disclosure; mine was very soupy. That could have been remedied by using more flour. But it didn’t really matter to me since the mashed potatoes absorbed the liquid. It was the perfect meal for a cold, rainy night. Bon Appétit!

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Pillows & Cocoa Wrap-Up

Pillows & Cocoa Wrap-Up

In preparation for the holidays, we used Christmas trees as the motif. Ahead of time, everyone chose between three background colors: red, green, or black. That way I could have the fabric pre-shrunk and cut for them. Then once they arrived, they chose the material for their trees, which I had already ironed Wonder Under onto.

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Pipe Shelving

Pipe Shelving

Pipe fittings can be expensive when you need several. I discovered three-piece versions at Home Depot for significantly less that if I were to buy everything separately. The down side is that they come in one size. But for my needs in this area, where paint cans and supplies will be stored, they were perfect.

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The Best Punch Ever, Hands Down!

The Best Punch Ever, Hands Down!

Many years ago, my mom, Mama Gabe, did a reception for my cousin’s senior piano recital. (The man has mad skills.) Anyway, she made this punch. TO DIE FOR! I have never been a punch person because it all has soda and I am one of a tiny minority of people who cannot stand carbonation. But this recipe had so much fruit in it that I could eat the “mash” (non-soda part) by itself, like Italian ice. This is no three-ingredient wonder, not that there’s anything wrong with those kinds. But oh my goodness, is it worth the effort. It is now a staple of our Yuletide season and I will never make another.

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The Garage Shed Part 3- Storage

The Garage Shed Part 3- Storage

For those just joining us, we have been transforming our garage into the Chics With Tools Makery. The most recent project was building a shed inside the garage. Okay, some people may call it a closet but since it is about 40 square feet, I am sticking with “shed”. You may ask why we are doing this. Well there is a lot of ugly that goes into most garages, such as lawn mowers, dirty tools, and blowers.

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