Sunday, November 23, 2008

Last of the Leaves

Yesterday we picked up the last of the leaves still left on the ground in our yard. There is one tree way in the back where the leaves don't fall until really late in the season. It was cold, but at least not snowing or wet. Last year winter came so quick the leaves stayed on the ground until April. I love how cute the kids look all bundled up!

How can you resist a smile like that!

"Holiday Happenings"

These are pictures of a table decorated by me and a friend last week for a Women's Ministry holiday event at our church. We also provided dessert for those at our table...Red Velvet Cheesecake and Pecan Pie Bars. The cheesecake is really rich, but oh so delicious and the colors make it a great fancy holiday dessert! Below are the recipes if you want to give them a try.

Red Velvet Cheesecake

1 1/2 c chocolate graham cracker crumbs
1/4 c butter - melted
1 T sugar
3 - 8 oz pkg light cream cheese - softened
1 1/2 c sugar
4 lg eggs -lightly beaten
3 T unsweetened cocoa - sifted
1 c light sour cream
1/2 c whole buttermilk
2 t vanilla
1 t distilled white vinegar
2 - 1 oz bottles red food coloring
1 - 3 oz pkg light cream cheese - softened
1/4 c butter - softened
2 c powdered sugar - sifted
1 t vanilla

stir together cracker crumbs, melted butter, cocoa and 1 T sugar
press into bottom of a 9" springform pan
beat 3 pkg cream cheese and 1 1/2 c sugar to blend
Add eggs and next 6 ingredients til fully blended
pour into prepared crust
bake at 325 degrees for 10 min
reduce heat to 300 degrees and bake for 1 hour and 15 min
or until center is firm
run knife along outer edges and turn oven off
let cheesecake stand in oven for 30 min
remove from oven - cool in pan on a wire rack for 30 min
cover and chill 8 hours or overnight
beat 1 - 3 oz cream cheese and 1/4 c butter with mixer til smooth
gradually add powdered sugar and vanilla - beat til smooth
spread evenly over top of cheesecake
remove sides of springform pan
garnish as desired

Pecan Pie Bars

2 c flour
1/2 c sugar
1/8 t salt
3/4 c butter - softened
1 c brown sugar
1 c karo syrup
1/2 c butter
4 lg eggs - lightly beaten
2 1/2 c pecans - finely chopped
1 t vanilla

combine flour, sugar and salt - add butter and mix til resembles fine crumbs
press into greased 9x13 pan
bake at 350 degrees for 17-20 min or til lightly browned
combine brown sugar, karo syrup and1/2 c butter in saucepan
bring to boil over med. heat - stirring gently - remove from heat
cool slightly - whisk into eggs - stir in pecans and vanilla - pour over crust
bake at 350 degrees 30-35 min or til set
cool and cut into bars

Monday, November 10, 2008

Welcome Drew

Our first nephew, Drew Daniel Ferwerda, was born on Friday, November 7 to my brother Dan and his wife Holly. He was born at 9 lbs. 1 oz. and 23 inches long. Everyone is doing great and they came home from the hospital today. I was sad not to be able to hold him myself because I had a pretty bad cold, but Josh and Jack sat together with Drew for a long time. For those of you who know Jack personally he has such a soft tender heart for a boy. It was so sweet how he was just getting down in his face and talking to him. He even put both his hands on Drew's cheeks and kissed his nose. Everyday I love to watch his big brother skills in action. Eleanor doesn't know how good of brother she has yet!

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Part 1...On Thursday we had a playdate/party with my cousins and a handful of other moms that we do regular playdates with. Usually we can get them all to at least stay in one general area for a picture, but getting them to look at the camera is another thing. "We have a frog on the loose!"

Great Grandma with all the kids

Part 2...On our way to Josh's brother's neighborhood for a little trick or treating.

You must be talking about someone kids don't pick their nose!
Fireman turned Ninja
The only thing Jack wanted from his treats immediately following were the cheese curls from the package Nana gave.
I think the funniest part of the evening was when the little girl of another couple we were with kept walking right up and into all the houses she was trick or treating at. It took her a while to get the concept of just staying on the porch and waiting for the treat.