Thursday, July 30, 2009

It's Thursday!



Outside my window... A sunshine filled morning.  A huge storm roared through the area last night.  Lots and lots of rain, thunder and lightening.


I am thinking... About ordering one last set of books for our little schoolroom, school will start (continue)in September!

From the learning rooms... Oh no...still not done!  My student and I are plugging along.  We have arrived at the letter T and the number 13 and we'll finish when we arrive at the letter Z!  Only a bit more.

I am thankful for... Too much!

From the kitchen... hamburgers and french fries tonight, cooked outside, so as not to heat the house too much!

I am wearing... gray capri's and a pink and orange sleeveless blouse and white tennis shoes.

I am reading... A mystery set in England about a murder that happens at a convention for authors of mystery fiction.

I am hoping... I hope for lots of things all the time.

I am creating...  I am hemming two pairs of slacks for my manly man and putting two buttonholes and buttons on the fly of a denim skirt that HAD to be laced up like tennis shoes, too weird!

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I am praying... that time passes quickly.  ((Haven't I said that before?))

Around the house...I got some new candles at Cabela's last week and they smell HEAVENLY.  The one I have burning right now is called Grandma's Kitchen and is a spicy clove scent.

One of my favorite things... Cuddling in bed, reading and drawing with my youngest.  It's sweet.

A few plans for the rest of the week... I think my manly man has a date to go fishing, in a boat, with a man from church on Saturday.  He will be taking #2 son with him.  What an adventure!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...

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((My two best campers... posing!))


Monday, July 27, 2009

Menu Monday


It's time for Menu Monday once again.  I often wonder why I love food so much.  It just makes me smile sometimes to think of menu planning and cooking.  I am happy folks enjoy my cooking!

Yesterday we enjoyed a wonderful pork lion roast with mashed potatoes and gravy, sauerkraut, green beans, cream corn and for dessert we had mixed berry shortcakes with ice cream.  Yummy.  There is still a little bit of the berry shortcakes left over today, maybe not for long!

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Monday~   Pulled pork burritos , black beans, rice

Tuesday~  Spaghetti, garlic sourdough toast, green salad

Wednesday~   Pineapple teriyaki burgers, french fries, oriental cabbage salad

Thursday~   Chili Dogs with onions, cheese and Fritos chips, cole slaw

Friday~   Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches

Saturday~   baked potatoes and green salad


Rosie the wiener dog goes home sometime today.  She settled into our home very nicely.  My manly man made the comment yesterday that he was starting to get attached to her!  She has taken over all of Banjo's things, toys, stuffed animals, bones and even his crate!

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Not too much planned for this week.  I need to organize for my fall homeschooling.  I need to make lesson plans and maybe purchase some other charts and things.  Got a bit of organizing to do in the schoolroom.  We are on the letter S and the number 12.  My student has surprised us recently by recognizing numbers over 20 and into the hundreds!  He is also learning how to sound out words!  I am so proud of him!  He is such a different student than my older son.  #2 just loves to learn and seems so hungry for it!

Still working on the camping laundry.  I've got two more sleeping bags to launder.  They barely fit in the machines here so I baby them along and they eventually finish.

Oh, did I tell you that #1 son searched all summer long for a job,  it looks like he got one!  He is working for a restaurant called 5 Guys Burgers and Fries.  He started training last Friday, this particular store opens tomorrow, he'll be cooking burgers and hot dogs to start, and works the closing shift 4-9 pm. They've got 60 new people but will fill the positions with only a select few.  He's waiting to see if he gets the axe or not!

That's all for today friends.  Have a blessed week!


Friday, July 24, 2009

Camping was Fun!


  Rausch Creek Off Road Park

Rausch Creek, Pennsylvania

Our campspot for two nights.  Camping during the week does have its advantages.  We learned that LONG ago.  We avoided the crowds and met a nice father and son to do our riding with.  The Toyota performed beautifully.  My manly man was very pleased.  The only thing that came loose was some bolts on the steering that we noticed acting funny on our way to our next campsite.

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Rich and Patrick our off road riding buddies!

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Up a hill.  Their Jeep.

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Through the mud puddle.  Our Toyota.

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Trying to impress a potential sponsor!

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Twinkies were not meant to be a snack for a 4x4 adventure!

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#1 son gets to drive!

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Hamming it up!

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We are dog sitting this week  Our new charge, Rosie LOVES to go for rides and LOVED the Toyota.  We parked for the night and she'd go and stand by the Toyota in hopes of getting another ride.  She liked this particular spot to look out from.  Banjo on the other hand is petrified of the Toyota.  His eyes dilate really big, he drools uncontrollably.  It backfired once on his first ride in it ...(back in Alaska...I guess he never forgot that!)

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"Should we go in that big hole guys?  Looks like someone else has been in it AND made it back out...?  Guys...guys?"

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The view from the top of the mountain.  Beautiful.

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All done!  We rode for about 5 hours and it was so much fun!

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Camp cook before her beauty treatments of the day.  Breakfast anyone?  Pancakes with blueberries we just picked!

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This next picture is our solar shower.  It didn't work so great.  It was too cloudy for the water to heat.  The first mornings shower was COLD.  But the second morning I heated water to pour in the shower and it felt good to take a warm shower!


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On Tuesday we drove to another area we've been through before.  Dingmans Falls area of Pennsylvania.  We were not the only campers here but the campground was pretty empty.  We had our camping area pretty much to ourselves and felt secluded.  It was just starting to rain when we arrived.  We set up tents and cooked dinner to a light rain coming through the trees.  It rained all night long!  When we woke on Wednesday morning the underside of our air mattress was laying in a puddle of water.  We spent part of Wednesday morning at an area laundromat drying a few things out.  Thankfully, Wednesday turned out just gorgeous!  We spent the afternoon down on the Delaware river wading, looking at fish and inspecting rocks.

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This is Banjo looking out to see all his boys in the swifter current.

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Even Rosie went swimming!

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This was our camp sight.

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I slept pretty good the first night.  Lulled into peaceful dreams with the sound of rain on the tent.  My husband woke me up once in the night thinking he heard bear coming near the tent.  I think it was Rosie snoring in her sleep!  But before bed on Wednesday evening I took #2 son and Banjo on a walk down by the farmers cornfield and spotted a huge pile of bear poo full of aluminum foil and candy wrappers.  So that night I woke up during the night and listened to the twigs breaking in the woods and gravel crunching all around our tent!  Bear?  Maybe...


Friday, July 17, 2009

Quick News


Not sure how much posting or if any posting will be done in the next week.  We are going to head to Pennsylvania early Monday and attempt to camp.  We haven't been camping since we were in California in 2006.  Wow...  way too long!  Pray for us as my manly man wants to take his Asian lady friend...

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on this outing and make her the star of the show.  He wants to go off road with her!  We'll have to drive her all the way there and back as we don't have a trailer for her.  It's probably close to 2-3 hours each way.  We're taking two vehicles in case she gets fickle.  She's never driven that far since she had her extreme makeover.

We're pretty excited to get out of the city and enjoy some time with just us.  I'll write updates when we return, next Saturday.





Friday's Flashback


I'm not sure if I've posted these pictures before.  If I have, Oh well, you get to look at them again.

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#2 son enjoying his quad ride up and down the driveway at our home in Kodiak, Alaska 2008

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Great friends Randy and Sandy and #2 son enjoying a break from riding in Kodiak, Alaska. 2007


Enjoying Friends


We enjoyed dinner with friends form church last night.  We were invited over to talk about Costa Rica and practice our Spanish.  I took a huge green salad and leftover brownies from my tea party.  Our dinner was excellent and the fellowship was wonderful!

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(The children...most of them, were inside playing so there are four bodies missing from this picture!)


What I Did Yesterday

I went and saw my friend Alison yesterday.

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Something sweet and beautiful has taken place at her house in the last week.

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Her name is Ariya Grace.

I was blessed to hold her for over an hour and she didn't even make a peep.  We kept trying to get her to open her eyes and she refused.  I can't wait to get some more cuddles in and continue to watch her grow! 


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Book Recommendation


We usually head to the library once a week for books and movies to enjoy here at home.  I love to check out recipe books to get ideas for meals or dishes to make.  We love to try new recipes!  I have a book recommendation!

The Dinner Doctor

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This was a great cookbook.  Using things that may already be in your pantry or something quick, like roasted chicken from the deli.  How you can make a dish from these simple things.  Great, Great book!  According to amazon books, she has a few more cookbooks as well.


Potato Chip Cookies

1 C. butter, softend

1 C. sugar

3C. flour

2 t. vanilla

1 1/2 C. crushed rippled or plain POTATO chips

1 C. powdered sugar

Oven to 350 degrees.

Beat butter and sugar in medium bowl on medium speed with electric mixer until just combined.  Then on high speed Until light and fluffy 1-2 minutes more.  Add flour and vanilla until just incorporated.  Drop batter by teaspoonfuls 1" apart on cookie sheet.

Bake until light golden brown and tender in the center.  10-12 minutes.  Cool slightly before removing to wire rack to cool completely.  When cool sprinkle generously with sifted powdered sugar. 

Makes 48


Chicken Burrito Bake

4 C. shredded cooked chicken

1 C. green salsa

2 C. Shredded taco blend style cheese

8-10 flour tortillas

1 (20 oz.) jar prepared alfredo style pasta sauce

*Toppings**shredded lettuce, chopped avocado, cilantro, green onion, sour cream, green salsa

Oven to 375 degrees

Mix together chicken, 1/2 C. cheese blend and salsa in medium size bowl.  Stir gently to incorporate.  Fill the 8-10 tortilla's with equal amounts of chicken filling.  Roll and place seam side down in greased 9X13X2 pan.  Cover burritos with alfredo sauce and remaining cheese.  Cover pan with aluminum foil completely.  Bake 20-25 minutes.  Remove foil bake an additional 5 minutes.  Let cool 5 minutes before serving.  *serve with additional toppings*





Monday, July 13, 2009

July Recipes

July Recipes

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

Rinsed and dried strawberries (about 1 pint)

1 C. semi sweet chocolate chips melted in microwave 30-90 seconds stir once or twice until all chips are dissolved

Holding strawberries by stem, dip each in chocolate, leaving a little space uncovered near the stem.  Place dipped berries on wax paper covered baking sheet.  Chill about 15 minutes before serving.  These are best tasting served fresh.


Strawberry Scones

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

2 C. flour

2 t. baking powder

1/2 t. salt

3 T. sugar

6 T.cold butter

2/3 C. cream, 1/2/ and 1/2, or milk

1 C. fresh, washed, diced strawberries

(**1 egg and 1 T. water blended with fork to brush on top of prepared scones before baking)

In corporate all ingredients, except strawberries in medium size mixing bowl.  (I used a pastry blender (or two forks)) and incorporated together until mixture looked coarse.  Then add cream and blend until incorporated fully.  Knead a few times on floured board until mix is no longer sticky.  roll into a 9x9 square and cut into eight equal triangle shaped pieces. Brush with egg wash mixture.  Bake 400 degrees 18-20 minutes until golden and set in centers.

(I changed the recipe out and made two other types of scones as well.  Substitute chopped pecans and 1 t. maple extract for strawberries.  Substitute 1/2 cup chopped dark raisins and 1 t. rum extract for strawberries.)

Serve with Clotted Cream and Lemon Curd.


Turkey Salad  Croissants

10 mini croissants, cut in half, but not all the way through

6 cups shredded, and cut into small pieces oven roasted turkey breast meat

2-3 stalks celery diced fine

2 green onions diced fine

1/2-3/4 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup diced bread and butter pickles (or sweet pickle)

1 c. mayonnaise

1/4 c. sour cream

2-3 T. lemon juice

salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together in medium bowl (except for prepared croissants)  Spread mixture into prepared croissants.  You may add lettuce to sandwich as well if desired. 

This recipe may be suited to your personal taste adding more or less of any ingredient.  Chicken would work just as well as turkey!  This would also taste great with some kind of chopped nut or water chesnuts added as well.  Grapes may be substituted for dried cranberries.  I found the important part is the mayonnaise, lemon juice and sour cream really makes the turkey salad hold together well.


Peanut Butter Snowballs

2 c. creamy peanut butter

2 T. butter, softend

2 C. powdered sugar

2 C. crispy rice cereal

16 oz. pkg white (or semi sweet) chocolate

Blend peanut butter, butter and powdered sugar together.  Add cereal; mix well until all ingredients are incorporated well.  Shape into balls by full teaspoonfuls.  Set on wax paper covered sheet.  Freeze.  Meanwhile melt white chocolate on medium low heat in microwave safe bowl.  Stir well to melt melt fully.  Dip balls into chocolate.  Return to was paper covered sheet.  Chill until set.

Makes 4-5 dozen


Almond Truffle Brownies

1 pkg. fudge brownie mix (13x9 pan size)

1/2 c. water

1/2 c. vegetable oil

1 egg

3/4 cup chopped almonds

1 t. almond extract


1 c (6 oz) semisweet chocolate chips

1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened

1/4 c powdered sugar

2 T. milk

1/2 t. almond extract


1/2 c. semi sweet chocolate chips

1/4 c. heavy cream

1/2 c. sliced, toasted almonds

In large bowl, combine the first six ingredients.  Pour into greased 13x9x2 pan.  Bake 350 degrees 23-25 minutes until just tests done.  Do not overbake!  Let cool on wire rack.

In microwave safe bowl, melt chocolate chips about 30-90 seconds; stir until smooth.  In separate medium size bowl, beat cream cheese and powdered sugar with electric mixer until smooth and fluffy.  Add milk, extract and melted chips stir well to incorporate.  Spread over brownies.  Refrigerate 1 hour until firm.

For topping, in small saucepan, melt chips and cream over low heat, stirring occasionally.  Spread over filling.  Sprinkle with almonds.  Refrigerate 1 hour before serving.

Yield: 1 1/2 dozen


Lemon Blossoms

18 1/2 oz. yellow cake mix

3 1/ 1/2 oz. instant lemon pudding mix

4 large eggs

3/4 c. vegetable oil


4 c. powdered sugar

1/3 c. FRESH lemon juice

Zest from 1 lemon

3 T. vegetable oil

3 T. water

Oven to 350 degrees.

Grease miniature muffin tins.

Combine cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, oil and blend with electric mixer until combined.  Mix will be thick.  Pour small amount of batter into each hole.  (No more than 1/2 full)  Bake 12 minutes.  Turn out to tea towel.

To make glaze sift powdered sugar into medium size bowl, add lemon zest, lemon juice, oil and 3 T. water.  mix until smooth.

Using fork or fingers, dip each lemon blossom in glaze until completely coated.  Remove to wire rack to set up.  May double dip for thicker coating.  Frost WHILE WARM!

Store in cool place, covered well.  These are great cold or just warm and freshly coated!


Olive and Pepper Pinwheels

1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened

1/3 c. each green,red, orange peppers diced fine

1  (2 1/2 oz.) can chopped olives

2 T. prepared RANCH dressing

(six) 6 inch flour tortillas

In small mixing bowl, beat softened cream cheese and ranch dressing with electric mixer until smooth; stir in peppers and olives.  Spread mix over all 6 tortillas.  Roll up jelly roll style; wrap tightly.  Chill 2 hours.  Just before serving, cut into 1 inch pieces.  Makes 3 dozen.


Friendship Tea Mix

1 jar (21.1 oz) orange breakfast drink (think TANG)

1 c. sugar

1/2 c. sweetened lemonade soft drink mix

1/2 c. sweetened instant tea

1 (3 oz.) pkg. apricot JELLO

2 1/2 t. ground cinnamon

Yield 50 batches.  Makes 5 cups total dried mix. 1 cup prepared mix plus 4 quarts water makes 1 pitcher full.  For individual cups... 4 1/2 teaspoons prepared mix with 8 oz. water (hot or cold) makes one mug full.


Crab Quiche

2 green onions sliced thin

4 large eggs

3/4 c. heavy cream

3/4 c. milk

salt and pepper to taste

1 t. lemon zest

dash nutmeg

1 T. dried parsley

1/4 c. crumbled, cooked bacon

1/2-1 cup Crab pieces  ( I have used real or imitation crab, with great results either way!)

1/2 cup shredded cheese (pepper jack, jack ,mozzarella, parmesan, swiss or cheddar cheese)

1 prepared pie crust for single crust pie

In medium bowl, beat eggs, cream, milk, green onion, salt, pepper, lemon zest and nutmeg with electric mixer on medium high speed until well combined.  Stir in cheese, crab and bacon.

Place pie crust in pie pan, flute edges of crust.   Cover edges of crust with aluminum foil strips to prevent burning.  Prick bottom of crust with fork.  Bake at 450 degrees for 5 minutes.  Remove foil edging. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake 5-7 minutes more until crust is a light golden color and not burned. Pour in egg filling mix into hot crust.  May cover edges again with foil to prevent over browning if desired.  Bake 325 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until quiche tests done.


Menu Monday



Monday-  Chicken Apple Sausages, Fried Potatoes with pepper and onions, Fried Apples

Tuesday-  Grilled Roasted Chicken, Grilled Potato, Corn on cob, asparagus

Wednesday-  Waffles, Scrambled eggs with cheese, Patty sausage

Thursday-  Dinner at friends house

Friday-  Hot dogs, Macaroni salad, Broccoli Salad

Saturday-  College graduation party at church...dinner undecided!

Sunday-  Grilled, roasted pork loin,  Mashed potatoes, Gravy,Creamed corn, Wilted Spinach Salad


School is done for the day.  We worked on Q and number review.  I need to clean up the house, put away laundry and clear off the dining room table.  (It has the leftover tea things that I didn't get put away yesterday.)  If I feel up to it I'll try to post recipes either today or tomorrow.  I am pretty tired after my party weekend!


Sunday, July 12, 2009

5-4-3-2-1 BLASTOFF!


Rockets, Rockets, Everywhere!

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(Chris and Beth)

 Blastoff SONG

Somewhere in outer space
God has prepared a place
For those who trust Him and obey
Jesus will come again
And though we don't know when
The countdown's getting lower every day.

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(#2 son wwaayyy back there!)

**CHORUS*: 10 and 9, 8 and 7, 6 and 5 and 4,
Call upon the Savior while you may,
3 and 2, coming through the clouds in bright array
The countdown's getting lower every day.


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( blast off! )

Jesus was crucified, suffered and bled he died,
But on the cross He did not stay
He made this promise true, I will come back for you,
The countdown's getting lower every day.


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(my manly man, #1 and #2 son and Chris)

Soon will the trumpet sound, and we’ll rise off the ground
With Christ forever will we be
Children where will you be, throughout eternity?
The countdown’s getting lower everyday!


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John 14:3   "And if I go and prepare a place for you,

I will come again,

and receive you unto myself;

that where I am,

there ye may be also. "

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It's a Hospitali-TEA!




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Hospitali-TEA Devotion


Hebrews 13: 1-2


“Let brotherly love continue.  Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”


Stranger = unfamiliar person, someone whom somebody does not know


All through the word of God we are encouraged to be mindful of our neighbors. Half of the Ten Commandments are written about our relationships with others.


to Entertain, is to be Hospitable, Kind


…some have entertained angels unawares… that statement implies that we may not know the people we are entertaining.  As a Christian this is a fruit that we should be growing for Christ.


The New Testament is full of verses to encourage us to get to know our neighbors.


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Romans 12:13

“ given to hospitality”


1 Tim. 3:2


“given to hospitality,”


Titus 1:8


“…a lover of hospitality,”


1 Peter 4:8-9


“And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves; for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.  Use hospitality one to another without grudging.”


By showing hospitality we can turn the strangers into friends!


By being hospitable with one another we can~

grow friendships

pray specifically for one another

encourage one another with nuggets from God’s word

and so much more…


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Some folks are blessed with the gift of hospitality.  Others have to put forth more time and effort into planning hospitality. 


Here are just a few ideas for some planned hospitality~

firepit fellowships

desserts and games


Sunday dinners

ice cream parties

quiet lunches


So I will close this devotion out by repeating that verse from Hebrews…

Hebrews 13: 1-2


“Let brotherly love continue.  Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”


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I had a great time hosting this ladies fellowship.  My sweet friend Sharon and her husband Chris were able to help  my husband and children in setting our tables up.  Sharon was a huge blessing in helping me get all the food laid out.  All the ladies in attendance said they had a great time.


We enoyed three flavors of hot tea, peach iced tea, Moka Java coffee and all the food I brought for tea.  I gave the ladies a Miss Manners Quiz that I formulated.  We had a teacup beauty contest and we did a "TEA" word search puzzle.  I also had some tea trivia I read to the ladies.  Did you know that bathing your feet in a bath of tea helps get rid of smelly feet?  My favorite item on the menu was the turkey salad croissants.  I'll have to post a few recipes this week!