Friday, December 30, 2011

Spaghetti Sauce

It sure does smell yummy in our house right now.  Today I made a batch of homemade spaghetti meat sauce.  This is my second time to make the sauce.  The first time I followed my dear friend Jodi's recipe, but today I made some changes as I seem to do with all recipes.  The following is what I did:

2 large onions
1 bunch of celery
2 green bell peppers
5 cans of mushroom pieces
4 large cans of tomato sauce
1 large can of diced tomatoes
3 lbs. ground beef
3 pkg. of homemade spaghetti seasoning mix

Chop onions, celery and bell pepper in food processor--saute.  Brown meat and drain grease.  I combined everything into my big roasting pan and cooked all afternoon--I just turned it off. 

Homemade spaghetti seasoning mix
1 T dried minced onion
1 T cornstarch
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 T dried parsley
1/4 tsp garlic powder
red pepper flakes to taste
1/4 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp sage
1/4 tsp marjoram
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp basil

Mix all together.  Makes one pkg. 

Once my sauce cools I will be putting it into quart freezer baggies.  I would love to can the sauce in glass jars it would be better for the environment, but I can't justify buying all the canning equipment just to can sauce.    This summer I would like to make this recipe again with fresh tomatoes from the farmer's market and fresh mushrooms if they have any.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Proud Mommy

Do you ever wonder if your parenting is good, or if your kiddos hear anything you say?  I sure do. 

Last night the boys and I had a moment where I felt like I was doing something right.  As I was putting the boys to bed I asked each of them what was their favorite thing about Christmas this year.  Jeffrey said, "giving you my present."  Jeffrey gave me a ring ($9.99 from Target) this year.  He has been so excited about the gift all week and kept wanting me to open it.  How awesome to know that my little four year old gets that it is not about getting, but giving.  Jackson answered my question with, "getting together with family."  He didn't say the Hotwheel race track from Uncle Matt and Aunt Liz, but he realizes as a six year old that seeing grandparents, uncles and aunts is more valuable than "stuff." 

Don't think my kiddos are perfect because they are not.  We differently had some bad moments during this Christmas season.  I love my boys during their good and bad moments, but I treasure the good moments because it sure does make me a proud Mommy. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011


"And this is the testimoney: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.  He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life." 1 John 5:11-12

Do you have life?

Friday, December 16, 2011


This morning I attended a funeral service for a man in our church.  That makes two funerals in four months--no fun at all.  Any death makes me think of Jamie and well it still hurts a lot. 

Anyways, earlier this week as the boys and I were praying I prayed for the Alvarado family.  Afterwards the boys asked why.  I said, "remember I told y'all Mr. Alvarado was in the hospital."  They nodded.  I continued, "he died and is now with Jesus, but his family is really sad so we need to pray for them."  Jeffrey said, "when someone is going to die just take a picture and write their name on it so you won't forget."  I laughed a little and told Jeffrey you could do that as I thought you never know what a 4 year old will say.  And I didn't think anything else of his comment till today.  When you die do you want people to remember what you did, what you said, how you looked and your name?  Or do you want people to remember the love, joy, peace, & grace that flowed through your life from God?  When others remember my life I want them to think of God's love and the name of Jesus.  Isn't that what life's all about? 

This also makes me think of Christmas.  When your children are grown and think back to their childhood Christmases do you want them to remember all the gifts or that you celebrated Jesus's birthday?  We do several different things to keep the focus on Christ.  We bake a birthday cake for Jesus.  This year Jackson decided with a little help from Jeffrey that we would bake a chocolate round cake with white icing and sprinkles with a baby Jesus on top.  We read scripture each night during Advent.  We give the boys three gifts just like Jesus received.  We read the Christmas story for the book of Luke on Christmas morning.  And we talk a lot about why we celebrate.  Our carpool buddy (4 yrs. old)  now gets in the van saying I already know why we celebrate Christmas because she knows it is going to be talked about.  These are simple things that help your kids and all of us remember Christ.  It is not to late to change your focus from "stuff" to Christ.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Lost Mittens

Both boys this week lost their gloves.  No surprise from Jeffrey this is his second pair this season, but Jackson never loses anything.  The night both gloves were missing Jackson said, "Three little kittens lost their mitten and didn't have pie.  Three little kittens found their mittens and got pie."  So, I said if you find your gloves I will make a pie.  They both found them on the same day--so we had pie.