Saturday, December 17, 2011

Rave Reviews Corn Soufflé

I'm running pretty behind this holilday season--lots of wrapping to do (AND shopping still to do!), and a stocking to make, and an early, full-swing Christmas gathering --What?!  Move Christmas UP?!  How 'bout BACK?!

But my recipe for corn soufflé is SO EASY and SO DELICIOUS that I simply have to share it with you so you can use it for your holiday gatherings.  This is a foolproof recipe, and I don’t think I’ve ever served it/taken it to a party where I wasn’t asked for the recipe.

It's this easy--these are all the ingredients!
You can bake it in the dish where you will serve it, to make it even easier
if you're transporting it, or bake it and transfer the
soufflé to a prettier serving dish when it's done.

Spray the dish with non-stick spray.
Mix them all in your baking dish, bake, and you're good to go. 
I've made it in a deep bowl, and I've made it in a large, 3" deep dish, depending
on the quantity.
This recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, and quadrupled.
The bowl in the pictures is the liner of an old crock pot.
It almost held a tripled recipe.

Oven:  375o
 Bake for 45 minutes to one hour, until the top is a lovely light golden brown.

Ingredients:
1 box Jiffy Corn Mix
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 stick softened butter, add in slices
1 can whole-kernel corn, drained
1 can creamed corn
8 oz sour cream
2 tbsp sugar (can be adjusted)
Optional:  Chopped fresh or canned jalapeño to taste (I use 1 for a single recipe)

About halfway through baking time stir to fully distribute the sour cream and butter.



Ready to go in the oven!
The small one with  jalapeño, the large without.
I made a triple recipe here, and scooped some out into the small bowl, then added the jalapeño.



Done!
Nice and lightly browned.
Ready to transport in my Longaberger basket to our family's Thanksgiving gathering.



Transporting corn souffle in Longaberger basket, Chickadee Home Nest
Ready to go!



This is how the smaller one went to the party~
In the small Longaberger mixing bowl and in a smaller Longaberger basket.



Since the mixing bowl has no lid, I inverted this pretty little dish that came in a box full of stuff
from an auction—it was my big, pleasant surprise!  I LOVE this little dish!



Tied it with a fall ribbon to keep the "lid" in place, and it was ready to go too!


I LOVE my Longaberger baskets for transporting food to parties!  The women in our family know that when we take something we take everything--the serving bowls, serving utensils, etc.--so the hostess doesn't have to scramble to look for these things when we arrive.
Do  you have Longaberger baskets?  How do you use them?

¡Buen provecho! (bon appétit in Spanish, which is what we say at our house before every meal.) 

Thanks for stopping by.  Please leave me a comment to let me know you were here—I read every single one of them, and they encourage and inspire me.  And if you like what you see a lot J, maybe you’d like to +1 this post too!  Thank you!

I’m joining the following parties; please visit me there so you can see other great stuff!
Totally Tasty Tuesday at http://mandysrecipebox.blogspot.com/
Transformation Thursday at http://www.theshabbycreekcottage.com/

I haven't done many recipes on my blog yet.  This is where I usually party, and if the recipe fits the party, I'll be here too!
 Open House Party Thursday http://nominimalisthere.blogspot.com
 Feathered Nest Friday at http://frenchcountrycottage.blogspot.com/
 Inspiration Friday at http://www.atthepicketfence.com
 Show and Tell Friday at http://romantichome.blogspot.com/
 Five Minutes Just for Me at http://5minutesjustforme.blogspot.com
 Homemaker on a Dime, Sunday at http://www.homemakeronadime.com/p/link-parties.html
 House in Roses Show Off Your Cottage Monday at http://houseinroses.blogspot.com
 Amaze Me Monday at http://dittledattle.blogspot.com
 Newbie Party on Monday at http://debbie-debbiedoos.blogspot.com


From my Chickadee Nest to yours~
    Zuni

 

Friday, December 16, 2011

Our Crazy Quilt of a Tree

I wanted to share our Chirstmas tree before it gets too late in the season...Will it serve as inspiration, or give ideas to some who are a bit behind?  I hope so.

Ours has been "up" (as in the tree stand) for almost two weeks, but it took us one week to finish it!   Even though it's technically done, I'm still looking at other beautiful blogs with beautiful Christmas trees--never hurts to see one more, get one more idea to either tweak this year, or save for next year, right?

We use the multi-color lights because our tree is never a theme tree.  It's a conglomeration of US--what we love and cherish.  So in the past we've thought that the multi-color lights looked better.  But we use white lights outside, and when I saw our tree with the multi-color lights from outside, I wondered if I would prefer white inside too.  What do you think?

So here it is! 
Pretty full, isn't it?  We love to load it with ornaments that are all dear and precious to us.
My husband and I buy a new ornament each year, and we now also buy them for our grandbabies, but they
go on our tree, so they'l have the memories of their being on our tree.  Plus we have many ornaments
from those early years when you buy them to start your first trees.
And our Black Beauty... She's an antique.  We bought her right after
Chickadee was born, for her and others to come, and they've all loved to ride her.

Some special ornaments: 
I bought this Reed and Barton silver ornament in 1982.  As you can see by the pictures on the right, the bottom
comes off and you removed the rolled green paper inside and wrote down the memories of that Christmas season.
It was a s-t-r-e-t-c-h at the time, believe me--I was a young, single mom with two little boys,
but because I had those two precious babies I wanted to have it for them.
Now, as I read my notes, I am ever so glad that I bought it.
 
It's our Crazy-Quilt Tree
The ornaments range from Wedgwood and Radkos to school crafts from when our babies were in pre-school--
Gguess which are the most treasured?  :)
This one is a snowman (you could tell, right?) with only one arm left, with a poem about building a snowlady.
I love that this crazy assortment of ornaments tell so much about us:
We're a mom and a dad--no doubt about that.
We're a grandmama & grandpapa--no doubt about that.
I love sunflowers.
We love our memories of a wonderful trip to Paris.
We love Santas--the fat, old-fashioned kind with soft, round, rosy cheecks.
We love palm trees, the beach, summer.
And we love our history--together and individually.  We have ornaments on our tree from
the year my husband was born, and because I came to the USA at age 8, we have
no ornaments from my early years, but we DO have two ornaments
from our first tree in the US.

Here is one of the two ornaments from our first Christmas tree in the US:
Isn't it the sweetest thing?  The "propeller" inside moves when you blow on it--the children have all loved them, of course.  I'm glad I have two--one for each of my boys and their families someday.
These ornaments represent not only the obvious memories, but also the kindness of the people
who helped us when my parents, little brother, and I arrived from Cuba with little more than
the clothes that fit in a suitcase in 1961.  They even had Christmas ornaments for us to start our new lives!


Our 2011 ornament.
Isn't it interesting?!  It's made of strips of cardstock.
Has anyone done a tutorial on how to make these?  It looks relatively easy; I'd love to make more!


The picture of our grandbabies is actually last year's Christmas card.
They're wearing matching Lanz of Salzburg jammies--so cute!


How about that palm tree?!  Is that not the coolest?!
We bought it at FantaSea at St. Armand's Circle outside of Sarasota.
(Beach lovers: be sure to find a FantaSea! Lots of cool stuff!)
You also see a handmade snowman, an apple, candy, etc.


 
Old and new...
The ornament on the left is circa 1965, from when my MIL and FIL lived in Venezuela, where he worked
for an American company.
The one on the right, the precious NEW.

 
Significant Family Events...
Our son and his lovely bride, at their wedding in October of this year.
Above that, my stepson's little thumbprint ornament, from 1982.


The Lenox pitcher and bowl ornament is a gift from one of our sons, because we also have the
Lenox Holiday china.  And the beautiful Santa?  From my MIL. 
The thoughtfulness of others.

A Fitz and Floyd reindeer our little Chickadee loves.
She just turned 4, but when she saw it this year she said, "I remember that."
We're making memories.

"Little Angel" school ornament next to Lenox, next to a tin Santa...perfect.

I told you about this nest HERE, when I had it in the china cabinet.
But as I explained, this nest appeared in our tree one year with a very nice {small} gift in it.
So, being the wise woman I am, it's back in its proper place now :).
I hope none of the chickadees or cardinals on the tree decide to take up residence
there, because it needs to be empty till Santa arrives!


My sons' First Year ornaments...1977 & 1978.
Yes, they've been on our tree every single year.

And, although these are not on our Christmas tree, for Chirstmas Vacation fans...
Can you believe there are people out there crazy enough to have these in their homes?!
The scene where Clark and Eddie "enjoy" a bit of eggnog is one of my husband's favorite scenes,
so one of our sons found these for him.  Every Christmas since, he wants to make sure they're out
(and we don't even like eggnog!)

 I wish you all a very happy and blessed Christmas.  Thanks for stopping by.  Please leave me a comment to let me know you were here—I read every single one of them!  They encourage me and inspire me.  And if you like what you see a lot J, maybe you’d like to +1 this post too!  Thank you!

I will be joining these fun parties; please stop by to see all the great things there!
 Inspiration Friday at http://www.atthepicketfence.com
 Show and Tell Friday at http://romantichome.blogspot.com/
 Five Minutes Just for Me at http://5minutesjustforme.blogspot.com
 House in Roses Show Off Your Cottage Monday at http://houseinroses.blogspot.com
 Amaze Me Monday at http://dittledattle.blogspot.com/
 Motivated Monday at http://becolorful.typepad.com/  
 Newbie Party on Monday at http://debbie-debbiedoos.blogspot.com/
 Tabletop Tuesday at http://astrollthrulife.blogspot.com/ 
 Wow Us Wednesdays at http://savvysouthernstyle.blogspot.com/ 
 Open House Party Thursday http://nominimalisthere.blogspot.com

From my Chickadee Nest to yours~
    Zuni

Monday, December 12, 2011

Gingerbread House for Little Ones

I've never made a gingerbread house, have you?  Those beautiful, elaborate ones we see in magazines and the White House require incredible decorating talent and patience and time--all in short supply around here!  But I found a GINGERBREAD HOUSE KIT that made it soooo easy, and the finished product was so cute.

Our baby granddaugher (yes, the Chickadee), is four, and I thought she would LOVE to do a gingerbread house.
I'd seen kits for around $10, but had elected to leave them.  When I found this one at Aldi for $6 or $7, I couldn't resist.
But...
I was skeptical about a kit and if it would be as easy as promised.

I wish I'd taken a picture of the contents--it was all perfect and foolproof.
A tray with a "foundation" to help keep the house square, perfect pieces for each side of the house, complete with design outlines, plenty of ready-to-use icing, and plenty of candy, all sorted in their own little packages.
A thing of beauty in and of itself.

I "built" the house and did all the outlines before she came over, because in her case,
patience is not a "birdshoe" (that's what she heard when I said "virtue," LOL!).
So it was ready for decorating.
(Note:  If you're going to do the preliminary decorating, I suggest that you leave the icicles for the very end, after applying the candy, so they don't interfere with decorating the windows and wreaths.)

We pretty much followed the suggested design, so it was also educational, because she was
looking at the box then finding the right candies to apply.

The "model" didn't have a sidewalk, though the platform for it does, so we smoothed icing on the "walkway"
and added crushed gingerbread cookies I happened to have from a dessert I'd made earlier.

Ta-dah!  Her masterpiece is complete!
Now, a tip of you're going to do this with a little one: She's four, and she was a bit more intersted in
eating the candy, but she was quite pleased with the end result.


 Aren't little hands at work {precious}?



I wish you all a very happy and blessed Christmas.  Thanks for stopping by.  Please leave me a comment to let me know you were here—I read every single one of them!  They encourage me and inspire me.  And if you like what you see a lot J, maybe you’d like to +1 this post too!  Thank you!

I will be joining these fun parties; please stop by to see all the great things there!

 House in Roses Show Off Your Cottage Monday at http://houseinroses.blogspot.com/
 Amaze Me Monday at http://dittledattle.blogspot.com/
 Motivated Monday at http://becolorful.typepad.com/  
 Newbie Party on Monday at http://debbie-debbiedoos.blogspot.com/
 Tabletop Tuesday at http://astrollthrulife.blogspot.com/ 
 Wow Us Wednesdays at http://savvysouthernstyle.blogspot.com/ 
 Open House Party Thursday http://nominimalisthere.blogspot.com
 Inspiration Friday at http://www.atthepicketfence.com
 Show and Tell Friday at http://romantichome.blogspot.com/
 Five Minutes Just for Me at http://5minutesjustforme.blogspot.com

From my Chickadee Nest to yours~
    Zuni

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Christmas Vignettes

What would a home be at Christmas with no vignettes/only a Christmas tree?  The tree might be the central piece, but it's the vignettes that spread the warmth and holiday cheer throughout the house.

This Kneeling Santa is one of my favorite pieces, and maybe my most treasured Christmas decoration--Santa/commercialism bowing to Baby Jesus.  I love the reverence--he's kneeling, and his hat is off--and the acknowledgement that Christmas is not about Santa, but about God's gift to mankind.

Santa kneeling at Baby Jesus' manger
This is a numbered piece.  Friends of ours had one, and I searched until I found one at a wholesaler's close out--What luck!  It's bisque, not resin, and though I've searched high and low for more like it, I've never been
able to find it.  I would love to give such a beautiful piece to our sons and DILs, so their babies
have it in their homes.
Mother-of-pearl nativity scene at Chickadee Home Nest
This mother-of-pearl nativity scene is right up there as a favorite treasure...
My grandmother brought it back from the Holy Land in the late 1970s.
Feather trees and nutcrackers at Chickadee Home Nest
And my {real} feather trees...
They are made from goose feathers!
"The tradition of feather trees began in Germany in the mid-19th century, when the cutting-down of trees was banned to save German woodlands.  German immigrants brought feather trees with them when they sailed to the New World. Their popularity increased when President Theodore Roosevelt also responded to the diminishing supply of fresh evergreens in America by ordering that no live trees be used in the White House holiday decorations." (From http://www.feathertreekits.com/history.htm)

Nutcrackers, hydrangeas, and vintage ornaments at Chickadee Home Nest
Our son's nutcracker collection--in "storage" at our home for now, has been a constant in
our Christmases for many years.
The large apothecary jar holds three 1946 ornaments from my MIL--
can you imagine such fragile items lasting this long? 
They deserve a place of honor...apart from all the others.

Hydrangeas, and vintage Christmas ornaments at Chickadee Home Nest

Christmas staircase banister filled with stockings at Chickadee Home Nest
No mantel can hold all these stockings!
Many are handmade; our sons' are the original ones they've had since their first Christmases.
Christmas feather trees, snowman and pomegranates vignette at Chickadee Home Nest
A Christmas-y kitchen corner.  Both snowmen are gifts from my boys...
and the dish on the back splash--disguising an outlet (do you dislike outlets as much as I do?)--is
also a gift from one of them.
Santa Christmas vignette at Chickadee Home Nest
A rosemary bush--have been looking for one since fall, and finally found it.  Perfect for another
kitchen vignette.
The silver Revere bowl is filled with mixed nuts in the shell--my parents always had them at home
around the holidays, and we've carried that tradition on.
The homey candle holders are a gift from my SIL...have had them for years, and still love them.
The Lenox Christmas plate on the wall is also a gift from one of our sons.

Santa Christmas vignette at Chickadee Home Nest
Miscellaneous other vignettes...they're everywhere!!
  
I wish you all a very happy and blessed Christmas.  Thanks for stopping by.  Please leave me a comment to let me know you were here—I read every single one of them!  They encourage me and inspire me.  And if you like what you see a lot J, maybe you’d like to +1 this post too!  Thank you!

I will be joining these fun parties; please stop by to see all the great things there!
 Homemaker on a Dime, Sunday at http://www.homemakeronadime.com/p/link-parties.html
 House in Roses Show Off Your cottage Monday http://houseinroses.blogspot.com
 Amaze Me Monday at http://dittledattle.blogspot.com/
 Motivated Monday at http://becolorful.typepad.com/  
 Newbie Party on Monday at http://debbie-debbiedoos.blogspot.com/
 Tabletop Tuesday at http://astrollthrulife.blogspot.com/ 
 Wow Us Wednesdays at http://savvysouthernstyle.blogspot.com/ 
 Open House Party Thursday http://nominimalisthere.blogspot.com
 Feathered Nest Friday at http://frenchcountrycottage.blogspot.com/
 Inspiration Friday at http://www.atthepicketfence.com
 Show and Tell Friday at http://romantichome.blogspot.com/
 Five Minutes Just for Me at http://5minutesjustforme.blogspot.com

From my Chickadee Nest to yours~
    Zuni

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Chickadee Christmas Table

Earlier this week I told you about my happy find--chickadee dishes for Chickadee Home Nest (HERE).  As in that post, I wanted my table to have a woodland but upscale feel, so there would be the contrast of rustic with shimmer.


The centerpiece says it all...
Christmas Blessings
to all who visit.
(Did you notice the candy cane in the goblet?  More on that later.)

And the chickadee dishes--LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them!
Perfect for Chickadee Home Nest, don't you think?
You notice the goblet is offset on the plate--that's to not obstruct the design.
I chose old, beautifully worn damask napkins, because they have a wonderful, soft
texture.  White?  For contrast with the tablecloth and to better show the texture brought
to the table by the napkin rings.

Silverplate chargers I've had for many years, and the flatware (Oneida King James, silverplate) add the
shimmer I wanted to add, and the silver goes well with the rim of the dishes.
Dishes - Global Design Connections/Kate Williams
Red goblets - Pottery Barn, a couple of years ago.

Remember I recently re-discovered Bombay Company? (HERE)  Bombay is now a department
at our local Kroger Marketplace.
You know how you can't go to the grocery store when you're hungry because you end up buying much more than you intended?  Well, I shouldn't go into Kroger Marketplace with Bombay when I'm dreaming and scheming about a tablescape either!  I'd seen this chicken-wire cloche, and in that moment of hunger weakness
I succumbed to my dreams.

These candles also were a gotta-have-them moment at Kroger--same trip...
The "candle holder"??  A piece of the trunk that was
 trimmed from our Christmas tree.
I saw these beautiful, natural rounds, and I knew they would be great as risers on my tables.
(If you do this, be sure to put wax paper or a dish under the trunks, as the sap will ruin most things.)

Earlier I asked if you'd noticed the candy cane in each red goblet.
Did you notice the stirrers in each of the clear ones?
They're tiny but precious.
The stirrers and candy-cane picks--
too cute to not take a good look at them.
My mother (yes, the one who feeds my dish addiction), gave me the stirrers
years and years ago, and though we don't make many drinks requiring stirring,
I never feel like it's Christmas and the decorating is done until they're out.
I usually put them in a pretty glass in the china cabinet.
The sweet candy-cane picks are from Pottery Barn a few years ago.
What do you think?  Do you like them as much as I do?
As the last picture I wanted to share the very interesting rims on these darling plates--
the rims look like twigs!
The salt and pepper chickadees are sitting on a little silverplate tray I recently got at GW,
and they're "nesting" in two napkin rings that are flexible enough to be reshaped as needed.

Thanks for stopping by.  Please leave me a comment to let me know you were here—I read every single one of them!  They encourage me and inspire me.  And if you like what you see a lot J, maybe you’d like to +1 this post too!  Thank you, and my very best wishes for a happy Christmas filled with warm and memorable moments.

I will be joining these fun parties; please stop by to see all the great things there!
 Open House Party Thursday http://nominimalisthere.blogspot.com
 Inspiration Friday at http://www.atthepicketfence.com
 Show and Tell Friday at http://romantichome.blogspot.com/
 Five Minutes Just for Me at http://5minutesjustforme.blogspot.com
 The Lettered Cottage at http://theletteredcottage.net/
 Motivated Monday at http://becolorful.typepad.com/  
 Newbie Party on Monday at http://debbie-debbiedoos.blogspot.com/
 Tabletop Tuesday at http://astrollthrulife.blogspot.com/ 
 Wow Us Wednesdays at http://savvysouthernstyle.blogspot.com/ 

From my Chickadee Nest to yours~
    Zuni

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

China Cabinet Metamorphosis to Christmas

One of my favorite things to do while playing house is to change the china cabinet.  Now that it's December, it's time to shift from the fall decorations (HERE) to Christmas.  But this year I had special reason to get it done, and here it is!

Chickadee dishes!!

I had been thinking about "winter" dishes (I already have the Lenox Holiday china--that's another post :) )
but I felt like "we" needed casual winter dishes (now, do you think the other half of "we" thought we needed more dishes?) While at TJ Maxx recently I spotted ONE little bowl waaayyy under a display of pots and pans (I think--I was too excited to notice!).  I scoured the store
for the rest, but only found one more bowl
and
a prize:
These chubby guys--salt & pepper shakers.
They needed a home, and don't you think
Chickadee Home Nest
is the perfect place for them?
I LOVE the hunt Can I find what I need?
The happy answer, after many calls for a couple of days, is
YES!!! 

So here is the transformation, from fall to Christmas.


I didn't want to go too fancy; I wanted a woodland, casual feel, so I gathered lots of natural elements:
nests, pinecones (okay, some are silver and glittery), a grapevine sleigh my youngest son bought
for "Mommy" when he was very young.
But I also wanted contrast, so I added reds and whites, and silver, to complement the colors of the dishes.



I made this centerpiece several years ago, but it usually goes on the piano or the dining room table.  I'd never
used it on the china cabinet, but it seemed the perfect addition to the chickadee/nature scene.

And guess who made himself right at home, right out of the Christmas decorations?
The pinecones are lit with the nifty battery-operated LED lights with a timer that I wrote
about HERE.
Let's peak inside for some of the details.
PB goblets from a couple of years ago.


You might recognize the arrangement in the red votive.  It's one of two that I made last Christmas.
I used the other one in my Pomander Tutorial (HERE).
The sweet nest is a gift from DH.  He put it in the tree a few Christmases ago with
a very special gift in it.

The silver Revere bowl holds a PB candle that I'll probably never burn--do you do that too?  Buy a candle and not burn it because it's too pretty? 
Next to it is another favorite Christmas decoration:
One of my real goose feather trees.
And here they are again.  Can you see that the rim is raised and nubby and textured like a real branch?
My crystal trees were a gift from my mother many years ago.  Love and cherish them too.




Thanks for stopping by.  Please leave me a comment to let me know you were here—I read every single one of them!  They encourage me and inspire me.  And if you like what you see a lot J, maybe you’d like to +1 this post too!  Thank you!

I will be joining these fun parties; please stop by to see all the great things there!

 Amaze Me Monday at http://dittledattle.blogspot.com/
 Motivated Monday at http://becolorful.typepad.com/  
 Newbie Party on Monday at http://debbie-debbiedoos.blogspot.com/
 Tabletop Tuesday at http://astrollthrulife.blogspot.com/ 
 Wow Us Wednesdays at http://savvysouthernstyle.blogspot.com/ 
 Open House Party Thursday http://nominimalisthere.blogspot.com
 Inspiration Friday at http://www.atthepicketfence.com
 Show and Tell Friday at http://romantichome.blogspot.com/
 Five Minutes Just for Me at http://5minutesjustforme.blogspot.com
 The Lettered Cottage at http://theletteredcottage.net/

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