Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Cooking & playing games

I am a true outdoors gal but I do love my indoor activities too at the log cabin. Cooking and playing games ranks right up there. I love finding new recipes - especially from other bloggers and sites such as allrecipes.com. I recently made this cheesy artichoke dip that my guests raved about (or maybe they were just being kind!) Now that I'm getting over the flu, food is starting to sound good to me again.

I've listed the recipe at the end of this blog post in case you would like to try this!

Here's a bite just for you!

Now, after I've loaded you up on some appetizers, let's play some games.

Sequence is one of our favorite board games. You work with your partner(s) to build a sequence on the board with the playing cards you have in your hand. Jacks are wild! I've listed the game link below on Amazon.

We also like to play scrabble and boggle too. What games do you like to play?

Cheesy Artichoke Dip - from http://www.allrecipes.com/
1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained
and chopped
1 (6 ounce) can marinated artichoke
hearts, drained and chopped
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chile
peppers, drained
1 cup mayonnaise
1 (4 ounce) package grated Parmesan
1 (8 ounce) package shredded mozzarella
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
In a medium bowl, mix artichoke hearts, marinated artichoke hearts, green chile peppers, mayonnaise, Parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese.
Spread the mixture in a small baking dish. Bake in the preheated oven 30 minutes, until lightly browned and bubbly.

Monday, December 29, 2008

I miss my log cabin

I miss my log cabin. Had the flu not knocked me off my feet, I would be there now with the hubby, stepson and Marvin the cat. I am anxious to put one of my Christmas presents in there (an electric fireplace from my dad!) So I'm laying in bed, daydreaming until I am back there again.

I miss my black squirrel despite him getting into the bird's food all the time. Check out the snow on his face!

I miss the chickadee's curiosity.

I miss the barking call of the red-bellied woodpecker. They always announce their arrival.

I miss snow shoeing through the woods.

And I miss the views of the snow covered lake.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Get your flu shot!

I was hospitalized with flu complications the past few days. I have to say this was the worst flu I ever had in my life and made me wish I had gotten my flu shot this year. I was so dehydrated that they went through 8 bags of IV solution to get me rehydrated. I am home now resting. I will catch up with all of you in the next few days. Next year I am definitely getting my flu shot. Did any of you get yours this year?

Friday, December 26, 2008

Exploring our town

I love to go exploring every nook in our log cabin town. I will drive down side streets, back roads, dirt roads...all in my quest to discover interesting houses, small lakes, wildlife and new trees. When I went driving down this snow covered road and watched this solitary man walking down it and occasionally looking up at the trees, I felt this photo captured the true essence of Northern Michigan - the place I love so much.

"Winter, a lingering season, is a time to gather golden moments, embark upon a sentimental journey, and enjoy every idle hour. "

- John Boswell

Snowy drive

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas to my blogger friends!

"May you have the gladness of Christmas which is hope;
The spirit of Christmas which is peace;
The heart of Christmas which is love."

-Ada V. Hendricks

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas is coming to the log cabin!

Christmas is a coming and Marvin is getting fat! I mean the geese are getting fat! Me too if I don't stop eating those cookies! I am making up decorative gift boxes filled with homemade goodies for some of my family members - fudge, coconut macaroon cookies, sugar cookies, banana sour cream bread - you get the idea! By the way, if you're looking for some good cookie recipes - check out Mom of 2 Good Boy's recipe site! I think I need to make those Russian tea cookies too! What are you making for Christmas?

I love having these 3 tiered plate stands for entertaining. They're great for displaying and serving appetizers or Christmas cookies!

We're driving up to the log cabin the day after Christmas. Can't wait to get back up there!

Here's a view from the loft.

Do you see my Christmas moose?

Greg and I love to camp - so I couldn't resist this ornament!

I've always wanted to see a snowy owl!

Looking good! Marvin the cat hasn't broken any ornaments yet!

But he does like to chew on the garland I've put on the stairs! Bad kitty! Santa is watching!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Odds & Ends

Here are some odds and ends photos of some more Christmas decorations and ornaments at the log cabin. I put a little tree in our shoe cube corner decorated with bird houses. I picked up this green star lantern light that I think I'll just keep up year round - what do you think? And I had to post a few more of my favorite ornaments - of course one involves a log cabin! The other is made out of an egg and represents the town of Grayling, Michigan where my in-laws have a cabin. I purchase the new egg every year for me and my mother-in-law. I still feel like I have so much to do to get ready for Christmas! Monday is going to be a power baking day once I get home. How about you? Are you ready???

Saturday, December 20, 2008

My snowplow man is going to be rich!

The snowplow man is making good money off us at the log cabin! We've had our driveway plowed 2 times already this week and it looks like after Sunday's predicted storm, he will be getting our business a 3rd time. It does look so beautiful out here with blankets of clean white snow on the trees and ground. Today it is 10 degrees and partly sunny. There are already ice fisherman out on our lake. I'm still a little hesitant to walk on it with my snow shoes. I have visions of going through the ice. I'll wait till January and then I think it'll be really frozen!

A Christmas wreath to greet you! Watch out for the icicles!

I put garland and red ribbons all around our deck. The chickadees love perching themselves on it until it's their turn at the birdfeeder.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Made it to the log cabin

It's 18 degrees and partly sunny today. The snow is piled high and it's nice and snug in the log cabin. A storm front is suppose to blow through tonight so we'll see what happens. (Besides more shoveling!) I hope all of you are staying warm!

Majority of blog readers rules! I added the lights to the garland and I think it was the crowning touch!

Here's Marvin with the moose ornament he snagged off the Christmas tree. I didn't have the heart to take it from him when he's all cuddled up with his moose baby. Awwww!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Driving in the snow

I am guessing our drive to the log cabin today will be simliar to the one we took last week. Snowy and slow! The picture below was of our drive last week. I'm so glad the hubby has decided to take some time off so we can spend 5 days at the cabin. We have friends coming to visit for a couple days and there are talks of going sledding!

Thank god for 4 wheel drive!
One of our favorite restaurants is Jac's Place at Marsh Ridge Golf Course. They also rent snowmobiles in the winter. I daydream that the couple in the photo is Greg and I heading back to our snowmobiles after dinner. (No, we don't have snowmobiles....not in the budget yet)

I had the clam strips last time at Jac's and they were so tender and good! Look how beautifully this is presented.

Greg had this pecan encrusted walleye with this outstanding sweet sauce - it was outstanding! I think I'm going to ask Greg to take me there on Friday...

Everyone have a great rest of the week! I'm hoping I can post and check everyone's blogs (that's if our DIAL-UP internet service is working up there. That's another story!)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Winner of a Few of My Favorite Things! (and 2 runner ups!)

Time to announce a winner and 2 runner ups (I just hate having only 1 winner!) Criteria for the winner was the funniest gift that made the hubby laugh out loud. The 2 runner ups were by random drawing and will receive a pair of those cozy socks I love so much.

Anyways, our WINNER hands down -is Jen from Unglazed. Jen's granny panties from her mother-in-law still has our house in hysterics!

Via random drawing, My 2 runner ups:
  1. Dawnie from Dawnies Life if by the sea
  2. Michele from New Beginnings
Ladies, please email me your addresses to shelleyupnorth at gmail dot com. Thank you! And thank you everyone for participating and visiting! These were great fun to read!

CHRISTMAS in Bloggyland Tour!

**Special note to those who participated in my "Favorite Things" Giveaway. I will post the winner and 2 runnerups tonight after 10 p.m. Thank you!**

Welcome to "A Christmas in Bloggyland Tour" hosted by Muse and a few of her bloggy friends. If you would like to visit other participating bloggers on the tour, please be sure to stop by Muse's blog . She will have the links posted for all the paticipants!

Welcome to my log cabin located in Northern Michigan! I have a special surprise for you today. We are first going to take a sleigh ride in the woods so I can show you the beautiful north country!

First, please stop by the wine cellar and pick up a bottle to share on the ride! It'll help take the edge off the cold while we're on the sleigh. (Muse, did I just see you take 2 bottles?! Nevermind...)

Here's our sleigh! Please hop on! These horses are named Jack and Jake. Watch out for Jack on the left - he likes to nip on the hoods of winter jackets!

And we're off on our sleigh ride! The snow has stopped falling and it's about 29 degrees outside. Perfect for a sleigh ride!

Let's stop by my neighbor's place where he has a fenced in elk herd. This is Prancer. He has an impressive rack wouldn't you say?

Let's head deeper into the woods. The sun is starting to go down.

Watch out for this snow branch so that it doesn't hit you in the face as we go by in the sleigh! I think it's time to head back to the log cabin and get warm and have some treats.

Step inside to my cozy little log cabin. It's warm and I have Christmas music playing. The coffee is brewing (some of you had too much wine!) and I also have some hot chocolate and egg nog. By the way, does anybody actually drink egg nog?!

I have the candles lit. You can sit at this table, up at the bar or in the family room. Make yourself comfortable! I have some chocolate dipped coconut macaroons, apple and pecan pie for us to nibble on.

There's still some more cookies left on this plate, so please help yourself! Well the night is winding down and I'm glad you could stop by my log cabin. Bundle up and drive safe! Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Log Cabin made me do it

Since we've built the log cabin, I've changed a little bit. I've always loved the outdoors and wildlife as well as doing my part in conservation. One of my fixations is water. The hubby always laughed cuz I was always telling him that he takes too long of showers. And don't leave the water running in the sink while you're brushing your teeth! And the list goes on. But then the log cabin was built.....and it did something to me.

After spending a long day out in the winter snow, and as we are driving back to our log cabin, I am thinking about one thing......

My hot shower! I have to get in that hot shower! I want to look at my beautiful log walls and think about my log kingdom. And I'm going to take a long one to ease the aches and cold of skiing or snow shoeing that day. I want to run that water until the water turns to cold. I am evil I tell you!

Look at this showerhead! I have the rain effect in my shower and the water comes out nice and strong. Oh wait, the hubby is calling me.....wants to know when I'm going to be done. And hey, what about that rule about not taking long showers? Crap! All I can say is the log cabin made me do it!

Friday, December 12, 2008

"A few of my favorite things" GIVEAWAY!

In the winter, I relish putting on my cozy socks, drinking some hot chocolate, lighting some candles and listening to some Christmas music! Hey - that sounds like the making for a good Christmas Giveaway!!

I have put some of those snuggly slipper socks in the box (men - you can give them to your wife if you win), Gourmet hot chocolate with some peppermint sticks, Christmas floating candles, A Transiberian Orchestra CD that I burned and a couple other surprises tucked into this cute snowman gift box!

Rules to enter: Please post here the worst holiday gift you've ever received. My hubby has a secret criteria for picking the winner! Please put a link back to your blog. If you list my giveaway on your blog - I will give you 2 extra entries to increase your chances of winning. Just let me know that you did so. You must have a blog and be a U.S. resident to enter. Deadline to enter is midnight on Sunday, Dec. 14th. Winner will be announced on Dec. 15th.

Merry Christmas! Thank you for your visits and comments! I love them!

A Christmas in Bloggyland Tour!

My bloggy friend Muse Swings is hosting "A Christmas in Bloggyland Tour" on Monday, December 15th.

"Show your decorations, your memories, stories, pictures, recipes, music, art, poetry, nature - anything -whatever you like on your Christmas in Bloggyland post for the 15th." - Muse

If you are interested in participating, please visit her blog and sign up. Should be fun! I've got to get the log cabin ready! And remember - I like cookies and pies!