Broccoli cauliflower salad

Needed something light to add to Thanksgiving dinner this year. I started searching Pintetest for recipes and ideas.

I found several recipes for Broccoli salad nothing that I liked totally

I didn’t want to add nuts or seeds, I didn’t like the idea of vinegar dressing so I hit the drawing board and tested my very own recipe

This is a bit of a risk, I mean what if it doesn’t turn out? Well it doesn’t turn out then… I have pretty much gotten okay with that fact!

Here is my recipe

Broccoli cauliflower salad

Recipe by The Closet CookCourse: SaladsDifficulty: Easy


Prep time




  • 1 package of prepared broccoli florets (in salad section in a bag)

  • 1 package of prepared cauliflower florets (in salad section in a bag)

  • 1 medium onion diced

  • 1 small package of dried cranberries

  • 1 cup cheddar cheese

  • 1 tsp of each; garlic powder, ground mustard, salt, pepper

  • 2 cups of homemade ranch(the recipe I used makes 1 pint) start with 1 cup add a cup at a time until you get it the way you like


  • Wash veggies
  • Cut broccoli into bite size florets
  • Cut cauliflower into small diced pieces
  • Dice medium onion
  • In a bowl mix all veggies and onions
  • Add seasoning and stir to incorporate
  • Add cheese and toss to mix
  • Add bag of dried cranberries toss to mix
  • Add dressing 1 cup at a time you want everything coated you dont want it drowning in dressing.
  • Refridgerate 1 hour before serving
  • Enjoy


  • the veggies, cranberries, cheese, seasoning, onions could be tossed together the night prior
  • Do not put dressing over the salad until 1-2 hours prior to serving
  • This does not keep longer than 1-2 days as the veggies lose their crispness

Did you try this recipe? Let us know below in the comments below

The great Toilet paper shortage

So here we are in November now 11 months into this pandemic and we are seeing a second wave of toilet paper shortages??????

I am still at a loss as to why this is… I mean you would think COVID was a GI virus instead of a respiratory virus.

Maybe it is like in the winter when the weatherman says its going to snow and everyone rushes to the store to get milk, eggs, and bread(I never understood that either) anyway I move on

Well when life gives you lemons… make lemonade i have always been told

So I created some pretty adorable little ornaments that have been listed in my ETSY shop I mean it is a memento a Keepsake if you will from this year

Handmade with love in my home craft studio

Toilet paper ornaments

Oh my goodness I think it is the sweet little face that makes this so darn cute!!!

This sweet roll is 2.5″ created by layering cardstock (making it thick and durable) features a metal eyelet and bakers twine!

Two options available

  • Without glitter($2.50 each)
  • With glitter($2.75 each)

The ornament can definitely be used as a gift tag or gift decoration or definitely as an ornament!

I hope this brings a smile to your face

We will always remember the year with no toilet paper



Thanksgiving menu series

I was so excited I mean when food, eating with family, and cooking for others is your favorite thing Thanksgiving is AWESOME and although it was a bit different it was still so great!

I have a fairly large close knit family however there was just 4 at my dinner table today everyone else took it to go which worked well too!!!

I made a couple of brand new recipes and my favorite(mac and cheese) here is our menu

  • Turkey
  • Ham
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Macaroni and cheese
  • Sweet potato casserole
  • Deviled eggs
  • Broccoli salad
  • Stuffing
  • Green beans
  • Corn
  • Gravy both turkey and ham
  • Rolls
  • Cranberry sauce
  • And for dessert; pecan pie, pumpkin pie, sugar cream pie, turkey cake

Recipes coming soon the next 3 days

I hope each of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!!!



Thankful…Grateful… blessed

Yes we truly are blessed and I am thankful everyday I just need to start being more active about it…. I mean I need to let people see my gratitude I need to live my gratitude outloud!

For the month of November we have had a series of sermons at church titled the same “living out gratitude outloud”

The Lord has done so much for me I would be here all year telling you what I am thankful for… but seriously in a year with so much hopelessness, so much sickness, so much negativity so much hate and so much division I am thankful for

  • my family- I know that everyone says they have been blessed with the best but seriously I have been I see so many families that barely speak to one another much less do anything together, my family is pretty close and for that I am thankful… not to mention my mom yea I have the BEST one☺
  • Thankful for my health and my families health… this Covid virus is nothing to joke about or not take seriously and God has been good to us, but not only COVID but other illnesses too health has been at the top of my thankful list this year for sure!
  • My job, in the middle of this pandemic many lost their jobs and I am thankful I was able to keep my job, work from home
  • My God is bigger than all these problems bigger than all my fears God is bigger than anything… I am thankful that God is in control
  • Thankful for kind people, in a world where you can be anything… be kind! It isnt that hard, really. I was always taught if you didn’t agree with someone it was okay to have your opinion and for them to have theirs and you move on. This has not been happening this year at least with people I know and it saddens me. It takes way more energy to be hateful just smile and be friendly.
  • Thankful for my church and church family, at the beginning of the pandemic it was horrible not being able to be at church
  • Thankfuk for pastors and leaders who figured out how we can gather safely and have church!

Living our gratitude outloud… asking God for something and Praising him outloud with strangers and friends alike… God is so so good because_____!

Yes we can be thankful but if we don’t express it (grateful) it is kind of a waste

Thanksgiving is a day on the calendar a great time to reflect at what we are thankful for but we should live everyday with grateful hearts!



Loaded Taco Baked Potato

Forget about Taco Tuesday you are going to love loaded taco baked potato

So I am redefining left overs once again

I absolutely love tacos I think they are my favorite!!!!

But you can only eat so many taco left overs right?

Well I had taco meat, black beans and all the fixings and thought what if I loaded up a baked potato.

So here is what I did

  • Grab a nice size baking potato
  • Wash them thoroughly
  • Cover in olive oil
  • Season well with salt, pepper, garlic
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 450⁰ until soft
  • warm your left over meat, beans
  • Gather your toppings… butter, sour cream, salsa, cheese, meat, black beans…
  • Build your potato
  • Enjoy

Did you try the loaded taco baked potato? How did you like it? Let us know below



Taco taquitos

Need something quick and easy for busy weeknights? Need something that is family approved?

Look how further than right here… taco taquitos the crunchy cheese saucy taquitos are perfect!!!

You know if you have been following me that I am not the biggest leftover fan and anything I can do to get out of eating leftovers I will try at least… when I started redefining my left overs I love left overs now!!!!(I am sure your family will too)

What you will need

  • the small taco size soft tortillas(2-3 per serving)
  • 4-6 (1 tbsp for each)tablespoons of taco meat left over or you can make it fresh if you wish
  • 1 cup of rice… Mexican, white… whatever you like
  • 2-3 tablespoons refried beans
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Salsa
  • Sour cream
  • Hot sauce
  • Queso/quacamole whatever else you have left over that you want to use

Put the taquitos together

  • Spread refried beans(these need to be warm to spread easy) over the tortilla
  • Place 1 tablespoon taco meat on one end of tortilla
  • Place 1 tsblespoon of rice on top or beside taco meat
  • Sprinkle with cheese
  • Roll up tortilla tight
  • Place on baking sheet
  • Repeat until all taquitos are made
  • Bake in a 425⁰ oven until golden brown
  • Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes
  • Serve with your favorite toppings
  • Enjoy!

Try these easy taco taquitos let me know below in comments



Support handmade

I have always loved crafting

Greeting cards is where I started, I always said you spend a great deal of time picking out the “perfect” card for that special occasion/Birthday party, you are so excited when you find The Card.

Showing up to the event and you realize 2 maybe more also thought your card was the “perfect” card this is not a fun feeling.

I decided to start making my own greeting cards because of this, and everyone kept telling me…”sell these cards”, “you could sell these cards” I finally gave in and opened an ETSY shop(before it was cool)

I sold some cards, then I added jewelry, I added charms, I added crochet projects, I added vinyl projects, I added home decor and then I became very overwhelmed.

Then I switched careers(I LOVE my day job, really my dream job) with my career switch came less time to craft, then I started grad school to get my Masters Degree in Public Health and this left me with no time to craft.

My ETSY shop had to go on the backburner.

I have graduated since and now am very used to my new career with 2020 safer at home I have found i have more time to craft

I forgot how relaxing it is to sit down and play with glue, get my scissors and cut and build layered paper diecuts.

I have made the decision to ReBrand my shop and have a Re-Grand opening

This time around I will be more focused by offering greeting cards and gift tags

Consider supporting handmade instead of buying from a box store generic greeting card.

Since it is Christmas season this is what I will begin listing… keep on mind my cards are limited to 1-2 designs meaning you will be able to give the “perfect” card that no one else will get you will get unique designs with every purchase!

I have a blog dedicated to my crafts and my new ETSY shop it is linked above under the creative closet.

I hope you will join me for my Grand Re-opening this month

ETSY shop link

Creative Corner blog link

Sneek peek

Taco Tortellini

Who can’t stand left overs? I am one that really would rather not eat left overs bit I also don’t want to be wasteful

What if we could redefine our left overs?

We can this is what I did today with left over tacos

So here is what you need

Taco Tortellini

Recipe by The Closet CookCourse: MainDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time



Redefine your left overs with this Italian-Mexican fusion!


  • small package of tortellini (4 servings)

  • 1 pound Velveeta cheese cut up

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 1 can enchilada sauce

  • 1 cup taco meat from your left overs

  • 1/2 cup black beans

  • garnish with; sour cream, salsa, shredded cheese, green onions


  • In a medium saucepan melt butter add cubed cheese stir constantly adding enchilada sauce
  • warm up your taco meat
  • Add taco meat and 1/2 cup black beans to the cheese sauce
  • Cook tortellini according to package directions
  • Serve in a bowl, put tortellini in the bottom, laddle sauce on top, Sprinkle cheese, spoonful of salsa, sour cream, green onions
  • enjoy!!!

I hope you enjoy this meal and if you decide to redefine your left overs let us know in the comments below



Never Forgotten

When tragedies happen or even big events(happy events) we remember where we were, who we were with, what we were doing when we heard the news.

50 years ago this very day the greatest sports tragedy in the US happened.

50 years ago today my Alma mater lost its football team(the better majority of it) the entire coaching staff along with community members, fans and supporters!

Our Thundering herd football team played their hearts out and lost the game to East Carolina, it was a close game.

The East Carolina team celebrated their victory that night after the game.

The Thundering Herd never made it home.

It was a rainy dark evening the airplane crashed into the hillside on the way to airport in Huntington WV.

This was and still to this day the greatest sports tragedy in US sports.

I obviously was not around 50 years ago… I am just 34, but my connection to Marshall is strong as well as this date.

My dad was a professional photographer and my mom tells me the story of them watching TV that night when they broke into regular programming with BREAKING NEWS of the crash… then the phone rang, it was the local newspaper calling to see if my dad could come to get some photos of the crash site.

Herald Dispatch File photo

Mom says she recalls him packing his camera bag as he rushed out the door… he didn’t talk about what he saw there that night.

herald dispatch file photo

He turned all of his photos into the paper for them to use. Not 100% sure if these photos are his but I am pretty sure as I know my dad didn’t want any credit or recognition for the photos and there were not that many photographers then.

Herald Dispatch
Herald Dispatch
Herald Dispatch File Photo
Herald Dispatch file photo

Several years later a movie was made “we are Marshall” fun fact this was filmed while I was a student at Marshall, I received my undergrad at Marshall University.

So on this day each year we stop and we remember.

My favorite line that opens the movie ” We Are Marshall” is…

“In the middle of Huntington WV there’s a river. Next to this river is a steel mill. Next to the steel mill there is a school. In the middle of the school, there’s a fountain. Each year on the exact same day, at the same exact hour, the water to this fountain is turned off. And in this moment once every year, through out the town, through out the school, time stands still.”

November 14, 1970

We Are Marshall

We have not and we will not forget

This year is special it has been 50 years and this year the football team and a few others will be getting honorary degrees, how special this is! Because of Covid these ceremonies are by invitation only, so many won’t be able to attend in person but we will all join virtually if we can.

November 14,2020 we are playing East Tennessee at home, every year when we play on the 14th or at least around this date we wear special jerseys and it is considered our “blackout game”

Our team have a 75 memorial sticker on their helmets and they take a trip to the cemetery the team is buried, many buried there together as they could not be identified.

Our school, our town has forever been affected by this tragedy and although the early years of Marshall football was not the best but, from the ashes we have rose and we have played the very best for them we win for them because WE ARE MARSHALL!!!!

The 75 remembered

Welcome to the village

Do you put out a Christmas village?

I can remember each year my mom would put out a village on our old fashioned radio(you know the one that took up thr entire wall) sometimes shr would put them in our bay window.

Never anything too extravagant but still we would set out the ceramic houses and people.

This year it is my goal to make our house the most Christmas ever!!!!

Yes, it is just the first of November but I have already begun decorating.

Christmas is probably my favorite time of the entire year… the whole season which starts November 1st with Thanksgiving up to New Years!!!

So putting my village out this year in the middle of my two main trees

I do have 2 trees…. why because I have 2 windows

I used a step stool I bought at Hobby Lobby in the wood section, I use as a photo prop… this gives me the top 2 levels… then I used a box my ring light came in for the 3rd level then 2 small boxes jewelry came in for my 4th level and the floor finished off my 5th and final layer

These houses are vintage Dickenson village

I have a town square with three kids having a snowball fight

I have a caroler in front of the town church

A couple walking through the deep snow

Santa visiting the town on his way to the town square for the tree lighting ceremony

A family building a snowman in front of their cottage

A sweet couple outside the grocery store

I love this little village and putting it together giving it a story!

If you have a village, do you still put it out?

Merry Christmas