Posted in Count Down to the New Year

Reader’s Favorites of 2013

Here are all-time favorite recipes from the beginning of the blog:

5.  2 Ingredient Pumpkin Cookies  – Published 11/19/11

4.  Pumpkin Granola – Published 10/09/12

3.  Sausage, cream cheese, and Rotel dip – Published 03/09/12

2.  Peanut butter blossoms – Published 10/24/10

1.  Baked Spaghetti – Published 01/07/12

Here are my favorite recipes of 2013:

5.  Easy Slow Cooker Pot Roast

4.  Homemade “Shamrock” Shake

3.  Key Lime Smoothie

2.  Almond Butter Protein Pancakes

1.  Biscoff Mug Cake

Favorite recipes of 2012

Posted in Cereal, Holiday/Christmas, Ingredients, Recipes, Snacks

Candy Cane Peppermint Puppy Chow

I had leftover candy canes and Chex cereal left over from making Chex Mix, so when I found this recipe, I knew I needed to make it. It may be difficult finding peppermint baking chips. Look for them anyway because this recipe is delicious.

I decided to post it so I can put it on my Christmas baking and making page for next year.

Candy Cane Peppermint Puppy Chow

Daily Dish Recipes


Stars of the recipe:

  • 5 c. Chex cereal (rice or corn)
  • 10 oz. Andes  peppermint baking chips (red bag) or any other peppermint chips
  • 1 c. powdered sugar
  • 6 candy canes, crushed


  1. Place peppermint baking chips in a microwaveable bowl. Melt at 50% power in 30-second intervals, stirring each time, until the chips are melted.
  2. While the peppermint chips are in the microwave, place the Chex cereal in a big bowl. Pour the melted peppermint chips over the cereal.
  3. Stir until the cereal is coated with the melted peppermint chips.
  4. Put the powdered sugar and crushed candy canes in a gallon-sized bag. Add the cereal to the bag.
  5. Shake until all of the cereal is coated with powdered sugar.
  6. Store in an airtight container for 2 weeks.
  7. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

Posted in Menu planning

Mom, What’s for dinner? – Week of December 30

It’s the last week of December/the first week of January.  Crazy 2013 is almost done.  This year has been full of highs and lows.  The high was our vacation to Virginia, South Carolina, Atlanta, and Alabama.  The low was the loss of my father-in-law.  We knew my father-in-law was not in the best of health, but we didn’t know we would lose him so suddenly.  The vacation is full of memories with him that the whole family will cherish.  I’m so glad we went on vacation.

I’m now looking toward 2014.  We are planning our trip to Disney.  Todd and my fourth time as a couple and the second time as a family.  It’ll be the sixth time I’ve visited Disney.  However, I don’t think you would count one of the times because I was down there for four months as a college intern.

I don’t have any resolutions for the next year.  Actually, I do have one resolution.  My father-in-law played Santa for 45 years and was kind to family, friends, and strangers.  He would talk and really listen to others.  So I will be a Santa to my friends, family, and strangers.  Do you have any resolutions?

Onto the menu for this week:

Monday – Chicken veggie packets, rice, pretzel rolls, homemade strawberry jelly

Tuesday  – Mexican fish, warm bean salsa, left-over rice

Wednesday – Pork or sausage, sauerkraut, roasted potatoes

Thursday – sausage and sweet potato bake

Friday – Chicken broccoli soft noodles

Saturday – veggie chili

Posted in Chocolate, DIY, Drinks, Ingredients, Recipes

Hot Chocolate Mix

Here’s another easy gift idea.  Who doesn’t like a nice cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows?  Okay, maybe someone who doesn’t like chocolate.  Since it’s winter, this is a nice gift to help the recipient of the gift warm up on those cold days.

Hot Chocolate Mix

Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 c. dry milk
  • 1/2 c. cocoa powder
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. nondairy creamer (I used French vanilla.)
  • optional:  mini marshmallows, mini candy cane, or chocolate chips


  1. Combine all the ingredients except marshmallows, mini candy cane, or chocolate chips.
  2. When ready to make a cup of hot chocolate, place 2 to 3 heaping Tbsps. of mix in a coffee mug.
  3. Pour 6 ounces of boiling water over the mix.
  4. Top with either chocolate chips, marshmallows, or mini candy cane.
  5. Enjoy!

If you want to make a Mexican hot chocolate, add 2 tsp. Ground cinnamon to the mix.

If you will give it as a gift, place 6 Tbsp. of the mix in a bag and the marshmallows or chocolate chips.  If you give a candy cane, tape it to the outside of the bag.  Place the instructions: combine 2 – 3 Tbsp. Mix with 6 ounces of boiling water.

Printable Recipe

Posted in Dips, DIY, Ingredients, Recipes, Snacks, Yogurt

French Onion Dip Mix

Are you looking for an easy gift to give for Christmas or the holidays?  This is an easy mix to whip up.  Place in a fancy holiday bag with instructions and give to a friend or relative.  (Or be like me and put it in a snack-sized bag with the instructions.  I have an overabundance of sandwich/snack bags.)

French Onion Dip Mix

Grandma Loy’s Kitchen

Stars of the recipe:

  • 3/4 c. minced onion
  • 1/3 c. beef bouillon granules
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. celery seed
  • 1/2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. parsley


  1. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Store in an airtight container.
  3. When ready to make the dip, mix 5 Tbsp. Of the mix with 1 c. sour cream or Greek yogurt.
  4. Chill for an hour.
  5. Enjoy with your favorite veggies or chips!

Printable Recipe