For Dragonflies And Me

  (Snover, Michigan)
Enjoy the everyday life I love to live!
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Mountain Pie Suppers, Homemade Napkin Rings, Cute 'Cookie' Packaging, Taylor's Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies!

Spring is here and how I just love to be outside~ especially where entertaining is concerned.  Nothing is as enjoyable to me as having my friends over for a lovely evening of food & fellowship... listening to the gobs of children running and playing and laughing... Spring and summer come to an end much too quickly for me, so I try to take advantage of my outside time as much as possible.  Our family really enjoys Mountain Pie suppers- in Canada we call them Hobo Pies.  Our children think this is so fun because they get to 'make' their pie just as they want with what they want.  Some of you may be saying, "what in the world is a Mountain or Hobo Pie?" Well you can purchase the pie irons at most big box stores and at all the hunting outfitters out there.  The are simply called 'pie irons' on the package.
*How to get started: First build a good camp fire and get a nice hot bed of coals with very little flames- you will need to keep it going though.
*Supplies you will need: Organic non-spray & bread. Have a table set up with all the toppings on where all guests can make their pies; make sure you have a board or something 'melt' proof to place the hot irons on when they are ready to come out.
*Toppings can be anything savory or sweet.  Here are a few ideas
    ~Sweet- Nutella & Banana, PB&J, any kind of fruit pie filling
    ~Savory toppings can include: pepperoni, cheese, mushrooms, bacon, ground beef regular or seasoned, ham, sausage, tomatoes, sweet &/or hot peppers, pineapple, olives or onions.
    ~Use pizza sauce, ranch dressing, mayo or any other dressing/sauce that goes with your combo!
*How to make: Be sure to spray both sides of the pie iron; place a slice of bread in each side; put your sauce on first and then layer on the toppings of your choice; carefully close iron and latch; put on the hot coals turning often, check the bread by opening the latch and carefully lifting to see how things are coming.  When toasted to perfection take iron out of the fire, place on prepared area and carefully open iron and remove the 'pie'.
Enjoy one after another and watch your guests have one of the most enjoyable meals they'll ever have!

Charming Homemade Napkin Rings...
When I entertain I love to add special touches. In many of my previous entries I have described table settings, special dinner ware and other little touches.  I often use linen napkins, they are just extra special. Here is a really cute idea to make an already special touch sweeter.  We all have extra buttons and now is the time to round them up and put them to use as charming clasps on napkin rings.  Use several different ones for an eclectic and wistful look.
*You will need to use 'shank' type buttons- buttons with a loop on the back, not holes.
* Choose a theme for your set, such as flowers, mother of pearl types or seashells.
*Decide on how many you want to make- I would say at least eight.
* I would recommend your buttons be at least 1 1/2" to 2 1/2" in size.
*Next thread a 12" length of cording through each shank, and tie its ends in a knot.  Secure knot to shank with a needle and tread so that it will stay hidden behind the button.  Wrap cording around a folded napkin, looping it back over the button to secure.

Giving gifts is so much fun, especially food gifts~ and cookies are always well appreciated!  Here is the cutest and simplest Cookie Packaging idea I have ever heard of, so I wanted to share it will all of you.
*First purchase a package of paper C.D. envelopes with a window- yes you are reading correctly!
* Next create a label- (a good size would be an Avery 5198 or a label about 3.5" wide by 1.67" high)- with what ever you want it to say- Happy Birthday, Happy New Year, It's A Boy/ Girl or whatever the occasion is!  Add a cute graphic to the label and you're all set.
*All you need to do is put your cookie inside the envelope and seal- you get to see how yummy it looks through the window!
*Adhere the label so it's center is on the top of the envelope so half is in front and the other half seals the back down.
These make great party favors as well!

We have growing boys in our house and after school snacks are a must have around here.  One of the favorites around here is Taylor's chocolate chip cookies.  Some people say to use semi sweet or dark- but forget that, nothing makes a cookie like Milk Chocolate!  Enjoy one of families favorites,
Taylor's Best Ever Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies!

1/3 cup shortening
1/3 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup raw organic sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)
3/4 cup mini Milk Chocolate Chips

1.  Preheat over to 375 degrees.
2. Mix shortening, butter, sugars, egg and vanilla will.  Measure flour by dipping method or by sifting.  For a softer, rounder cookie, add 1/4 cup more flour.)
3. Stir dry ingredients together and blend in; mix in chips and nuts if adding.
5. Drop rounded teaspoons of  dough 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
6. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until delicately browned.
Cookies should still be soft.  Cool slightly before removing from pan!

Happy Day,
Jean

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