Monday, November 30, 2015

Substitute Teaching 1st Grade Religion Class This Week

This week I am substitute teaching a 1st grade religion class. We are going to learn about Advent. But I also thought it would be fun for them to learn about Mother Teresa and St. Nick. And I made little crafts and snacks to reinforce the lessons.

Each child will get a Mother Teresa coloring sheet. 

I made each child a little Mother Teresa peg doll. And we are going to learn some fun facts about Mother Teresa.

She will be canonized in September 2016. We are also going to learn about how one becomes a Saint.

Each child will also get a St. Nick coloring sheet. We will also learn some fun facts about St. Nick.

Everyone will get a St. Nick candy bar. I found the St. Nick candy bar wrappers on the on the it is a fantastic website with craft ideas for all ages. 

I printed the candy bar wrappers to use on snack sized Hershey bars.

I simply cut the little wrapper out and taped it arounf the Hershey bar.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Cornicopia Treats for Religion Class

I made some little cornucopias for the 1st grade Religion class.

The sugar cones are filled with carmel corn, mini pretzels, Cheese-its and the fall colored m&m's.

The cones were packaged into cone shaped cellophane bags and tied with and orange polka dot ribbon.

I made some little tags that say "Give thanks to the Lord for he is good."

I tied the tags on with twine. And I also brought my turkey lollipop holder.

The class loved the little treats!

The Thankful basket is perfect for this little treat!

Monday, November 16, 2015

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Nuts

I make these nuts every year right before Thanksgiving. Since they are made with a Pumpkin Pie Spice they are perfect for a Thanksgiving party favor or hostess gift.

They are so easy to make and can be packaged in jars or cellophane bags.


3 egg whites

3 tablespoons of water

2 cups lightly salted peanuts

1 cup pumpkin seeds

1 cup sunflower seeds

2 cups walnuts

2 cups pecans

2 cups cashews

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of sugar

3 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice

1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

3 teaspoons salt

Note: just use 10 cups of your favorite nuts ( you might want to omit the cashews and use almonds instead).


Line 2 large cookie sheets with foil and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a very large bowl whisk the egg whites and water until the mixture is frothy.

Start adding the nuts into the bowl and toss until all the nuts are coated. Then add the sugar, pumpkin pie spice, cayenne pepper and salt to the bowl and stir until the mixture is combined.

Divide the mixture on to the 2 foil lined cookie sheets.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes - stirring every 10 minutes. 

Let the mixture cool and package it into jars or cellophane bags.

Some dried cranberries would look nice sprinkled into the nuts. I think I will try the dried cranberries next year.

While the nuts cooled - I punched out some brown circles and wrote my labels.

Using double stick tape I adhered the labels to the top of the jars.

The final step is to tie the jars with a pretty piece of ribbon. The nuts can be used in a salad, on oatmeal or ice cream. They also make a great snack!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Some of my favorite things to make when the weather starts to get a little chilly - soup and pies. Okay, who I am I fooling I make pies all year round!

Last night I made Chicken Tortilla Soup - I even have leftovers to heat up for dinner tonight. Yah me!


1 tablespoon canola oil

1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped

1 tablespoon of minced garlic

2 jalapeños, seeded and finely chopped

1 (32 ounce) carton of chicken broth

salt and pepper to taste

3 cups of shredded and chopped rotisserie chicken

1 red bell pepper, finely chopped

3 roma tomatoes, finely chopped

1 cup of milk

1 can (15 ounce) black beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup fresh or frozen corn

Garnish Ideas:

shredded cheddar cheese

sour cream


diced avocados

tortilla chips


Heat canola oil in a large pot over medium heat. Once the oil is hot add the onion and jalapeño and sauté for a few minutes. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds. 

Add chicken broth and salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat to low and add chicken, tomatoes, bell pepper and black beans. Add milk, black beans and corn. Bring mixture to a low boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 15 - 20 minutes.

This is a really pretty soup. Put the soup in bowls and add desired garnishes.

I garnished the soup with tortilla chips, sour cream, cheddar cheese and avocado chunks. I had cilantro but I forgot to use it!

My husband likes his food a little spicy to he added a little hot sauce to his soup.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Candy Bibles for Religion Class

I made a huge stack of little candy Bible's for the 1st grade Religion class that I have been substitute teaching. They were so easy to make and would be perfect for any religion class or even an adult Bible study.

Supply List:

Black card stock 

1/8" wide red ribbon

Hershey's Chocolate Nuggets

Glue dots

Glue stick

Double stick tape


Address labels


Scripture Verse


Cut black card stock into 2" x 1 1/2" pieces.

Cut the red ribbon into 3" pieces. I used glue dots to adhere my red ribbon but you could also use a dab of white glue or glue stick.

Glue the red ribbon to the middle of the black rectangle.

Glue dots are really handy and easy to use.

The Hershey's Nuggets make the perfect Bibles because they have a curved top.

Using double stick tape adhere a Nugget to each side the red ribbon.

Use a generous piece of the double side tape.

I just used a mailing label to handwrite my scripture verse. In the past I have printed the scripture out on the computer. I usually start with a 10 point font and go down from there. The font size varies depending on the length of your scripture verse.

Bring the red ribbon around over the scripture verse. And adhere with a small glue dot, dab of white glue or small piece of double stick.

The kids loved the little Bibles! These would make cute party favors for a Baptism or First Communion. 

I found a little scripture verse similar to the "Golden Rule" which is something we have been talking about a lot. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Tissue Paper Leaves for Meals on Wheels

I made 50 of these tissue paper leaves for Meals on Wheels. They are just a little decoration for the Thanksgiving delivery.

They were easy to make and I thought they would make a beautiful fall garland or they would look cute glued on a place card for Thanksgiving dinner.

The supplies are easy to find and this would be a fun project for older kids while you are busy in the kitchen.

Supply List:

tissue paper in fall colors


white copy paper

modge podge

paint brush

large pieces of cardboard

leaf cookie cutter

black marker


fall colored rhinestones


Cut some of the tissue paper into little 1-inch squares.

Using Modge Podge paint strips onto simple white copy paper and lay down the little pieces of tissue.  Use pieces of cardboard to lay the Modge Podge papers to dry.

Then Modge Podge over the top of the tissues.

Let the Modge Podge dry completely.

Turn the tissue side face down and trace a leaf outline with a leaf shaped cookie cutter.

Cut out the leaves and lightly Modge Poge the top of each leaf. 

Once the leaves are dry - they can be decorated with stick on rhinestones.

I also bought some brown rhinestones.

Each leaf is decorated a little differently because in nature leaves always look a little different. 

A bunch of these would look fabulous sprinkled all over a dinning room table. Or glued onto a greeting card.

I might make some for myself this weekend I want to make a garland!

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Cucumber Tea Sandwiches

I make these little tea sandwiches all the time. They are so simple to make and everyone loves them. They are really easy to make and the perfect little snack. 

Layout some white bread on a cutting board.

Spread each slice of bread with a thin layer of cream cheese. Lay 4 slices of cucumber on the bottom slice of bread and place 4 thin radish slices on top of the cucumber slices.

Always cut the crusts off!

Cut each crustless sandwich into 4 small squares and pile them on a serving tray. I made these for after a tennis match last week. 

Friday, November 6, 2015

Chicken Corn Chowder

I had some leftover chicken and decided to make some Chicken Corn Chowder. It has been chilly in the evenings and nothing is warm and comforting like a bowl of homemade soup. 


1/4 cup butter

1 large red bell pepper. finely diced

1 medium yellow onion, finely diced

2 jalapeños, seeded and finely diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

6 cups chicken broth

3 medium russet potatoes , peeled and diced

salt and pepper to taste

2 1/2 cups fresh or frozen corn

3 cups cooked chicken, cut into bite sized chunks

1 1/2 cups half and half

Garnishes Ideas : crumbled bacon, diced red or green bell pepper, diced jalapeño, shredded cheddar or jack cheese, diced green onion


In a large pot melt butter and add the bell pepper, onion and jalapeños sauté until tender. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds. 

Stir in flour and slowly add in the chicken broth. Add the potatoes and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Bring the soup to a boil stirring frequently.  Reduce heat to medium/low and cook until the potatoes are tender about 15 minutes.

Add in cooked chicken, corn and half and half. Simmer uncovered for an additional 15 minutes. I used leftover chicken - but I have also used rotisserie chicken in this recipe.

While the soup is simmering you can start preparing the various toppings to garnish the soup.

Bon appétit!