Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Spiced Pecans - Happy Halloween!

So, the baby boy and his chick are moving home for a couple of years.  They are going to attend the University of Alaska and live with us.  We have always told our kids they can live at home for free if they are going to school, and with a tuition waiver for the baby, it is a wonderful way to finish his bachelor's degree! (this is a little gift from God, for the baby and for me)

To say I am a little excited is an understatement!  Feel very sorry for my husband - and my co-workers.  I do tend to perseverate on things and with my excitement, I do believe I am almost unbearable. (no, I am not sending a picture every day to the baby, counting down until they get on the ferry, that is someone else hijacking my phone) Ahhhh, it is what it is - it's what you do with it that counts.  So I am trying to be quiet (and just perseverate in my head), and I'm taking my co-workers a Halloween gift.

We had a busy weekend, Dave cleaned out the playroom and put together shelving.  I am moving ALL my dishes onto two units and cleaning out the back bedroom closets (yes, they all were full of dishes, don't judge I know it is an illness).  He is also moving some of the DILs treasures we were storing in the back bedrooms and organizing his hunting/camping gear on some other shelves he put together.
The playroom after Dave cleaned it out (it used to be a garage)

The start of shelving - Dave working in the garage

This is Dave's "stop taking pictures of me or I'll break your camera" look.

Shelving in the playroom a.k.a. the dish room
One closet emptied of dished, three to go...

The back two bedrooms are now known as 'the duplex' since the kids are moving home.  One room is the bedroom for the kids, the other room we've made into a t.v. room for them.  That way if they want to play a video game, have friends over, or just get away from us they have a place to go.  Dave can watch football on Sundays and BB (baby boy) can play games if he wants.  If we all want to be together we can, in the family room.

I know having kids back in the house after 4 years will be an adjustment for us and for them.  They have been on their own and now they are back home (And the poor chick!  She is leaving her family to come here.  Talk about change in environments).  I'm trying to think of ways to help all of us with this transition...any suggestions?
Two of the finished gifts for work.

So, back to the nuts (not me, the treats).  We were very busy all weekend and I wanted to make a treat so I made spiced nuts.  They are an easy, quick, delicious addition to salads, tops of muffins, a cheese tray, or just by themselves.  The perfect little gift.

Spiced Pecans
Adapted from Taste of Home, November

1/3 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 inch piece gingerroot, peeled and sliced
1 Tbsp. water
2 tsp. hot pepper sauce, I used Franks
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
3 cups pecans
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. kosher salt

Preheat oven to 325°F.  Grease a foil-lined 15x10 baking pan.  In a large saucepan, combine the first seven ingredients; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer 2-3 minutes or until syrupy, stirring occasionally.  Remove slices of gingerroot.

Add pecans, stirring until completely covered with syrup.  Pour onto prepared baking pan and spread out in single layer.  Roast for 20-25 minutes or until toasted, stirring several times.

In the meantime, mix 1/4 cup sugar, 2 Tbsp. cinnamon and 1 tsp. kosher salt.
Remove from oven and sprinkle with sugar/cinnamon/salt mixture.

 Cool completely.  Store in airtight container.
Happy Halloween!

October 30, 2013   Daylight  8 hrs. 1 min. 13 sec.   Temp. H 32/ L 21°F

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