Best Ham ever!!!

Okay… just to let ya know what you are seeing in the pic, on the top is the croissant, next row is flat green beans and mashed potatoes, last we have corn, ham, and baked beans… 😛 but for this post we are focusing on the ham (or any oven back meat really)

The secret to fall apart meat? lower the temperature and up the time!!!

For the Ham, I put the oven on 275 degrees (which is about the temp I usually use, but the rule is half the temp.) I went a little above half for my temp because cooking below 275 seems insane to me, but you are welcome to try.

a Ham is a good meat to start your experiments with.. most of the holiday Hams come pre-cooked. In fact, some people just cut and serve (which I would never do. I like to up the taste)

Getting a cookie sheet, I place a disposable aluminum pan on the cookie sheet. Placing the Ham inside, I am ready to start.

                 Ingredients: for a smaller ham, can double if needed
              Ham (I use superior tavern ham)
              can of Pineapple slices (as many as you want)
              juice from Pineapples
              1/2 cup of brown sugar (I sometimes use sugar-free)
              1/2 stick of butter
              Diet coke (about half a can)

With toothpicks, I arrange pineapple slices around my ham. I half a dozen slices to a full dozen. Basically, I used different numbers depending on the size of the Ham. Some times I also stab into the Ham so that the mixture will soak in more.

Melting my butter, I then add in the pineapple juice and sugar, and stir well. Last I pour in my diet coke and mix a little before pouring over my Ham.

Using aluminum foil, I pull off two pieces a little longer than the pan. Placing them on top of one another, I fold the edges over a few time so that when opened there is an extra wide piece. I then place the foil over my Ham and secure the edges tightly. This gives a cooking bag effect (pressure cooker).

Finally, making sure the shelf in the oven is on the lowest level, I cook my Ham for 7-8 hours. The longer you cook the Ham, the more you increase the tenderness of the Ham. I learned this technique from my aunt, after eating a Ham she cooked that was so tender it was falling apart.

The end result is definitely worth the longer cook time. And on the plus side, any leftovers can be frozen to eat on their own, or used in things like white/brown bean, vegetable soup, etc… use your imagination!

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Okay… this is a pinterest pic, mainly because I forgot to take a pic when I made this dish for mom… she was in a faze where she wanted to (I think the restaurant was called Max & Erma’s but not sure)… the point is, every week she wanted to drive up to Huntington (an almost hour drive) to have a bowl… so I decided??? I’ll just make it myself… after looking through some online copy-cat recipes on the internet, I settled on this one. Enjoy

 In a large stockpot combine and whisk together until smooth: 
 1 can each of the following Campbell soups: cream of mushroom, cream of chicken soup, cream of celery soup, and 10 oz of Salsa Con Queso Cheese dip (I use the medium).
 2 cans (15 oz ) chicken broth
 1/2 - (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes
 1/2 cup Pace brand medium salsa
 1 (4.5 oz) can Ortega green chiles (I only used half but then it wasn’t hot enough so I added some more.. really this is up to you)
 1/2 medium onion, chopped
 2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
 1/2 tsp. red chile powder, more or less to your taste
 salt and pepper to your taste
 Bring to a full boil, reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour.
 2 cooked chicken breasts, cut into small chunks (then shred… I didn’t like having bite size pieces, but again it is your call)
 Simmer another hour.
 While soup is simmering, make your soup toppings:
 Cut 1 pkg. flour tortillas into small thin strips and deep fry in hot oil until lightly browned. (mom liked fritos on top, also the grocery sells tortillas toppings in salad aisle )
 Shred 1/2 lb. longhorn style colby cheese (package sharp cheddar works too)
 To serve: 
 Ladle soup into bowls, top with shredded cheese and fried tortilla strips. Yummm 

Sadly, I am hit for miss with this recipe… with mom my only taste tester… lol… I think I screwed up the second time by shredding the chicken instead of just cutting it up bite size… hope you enjoy

I Wonder of the Day

pinterest pic
 <!--  /* Font Definitions */  @font-face {font-family:"Cambria Math"; panose-1:2 4 5 3 5 4 6 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:roman; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:3 0 0 0 1 0;}  /* Style Definitions */  p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-unhide:no; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman",serif; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman";} .MsoChpDefault {mso-style-type:export-only; mso-default-props:yes; font-size:10.0pt; mso-ansi-font-size:10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size:10.0pt;} @page WordSection1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.25in 1.0in 1.25in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.WordSection1 {page:WordSection1;} --> 
 “I wonder of the world”
 By T. Clark
 I wonder of the world 
 That happens all the day
 The innocent abyss
 That comes when children play
 I wonder how they stay 
 In their place and time 
 While climbing the mountains
 Or swimming the ocean wide
 I wonder if they know 
 There’s no one really there
 I wonder if they see 
 Their friends are made of air
 I wonder if they feel 
 Their mountain is a hill
 Or that the ocean blue
 A rocky shore that’s still
 I wonder what they see 
 When in their jungle hut
 Or how they learn to tame 
 Their wild jungle mutts
 I wonder of this world
 That happens all the day
 I wonder how I lost 
 My innocent days of play

Fun Swag Crafts…

soooo … I have been doing a Blog Block Party with RRBC (Rave Reviews Book Club)… great post by bloggers, authors, and all manner of peeps… and I wanted to offer something new as a prize this time… over course I have some of my bracelets and earrings to pick from, but I wanted to add some new fun swag…


I broke out my tools, added some keychain rings and some chain…. and wha-la…


so far I have five keychains with various charms… I just need to add sayings in the bottle cap charms…


so that has been my art project this month… if you guys want a chance to win a keychain or bracelet/earrings, I am scheduled as one of the stops on the RRBC block party on the 29th, over at my book blog Finder’s Keepers Series … I will have a character interview with Marin from my Finder’s Keepers Series… Makayla (also from the books) did an interview on the 5th over on my author site Finder’s Keepers – Author Tracey Clark …

Blog Party 1

but I’m not the only one will cool prizes and posts… check out the RRBC Block Party line up… there are stops every day this month… alright guys… that’s all for now…

make your own booklets



booklets are easy but time consuming… and a bugger to figure out the first time… so here is a cheat sheet for your first… 😛

you need a printer, some printer paper, staples, and a paper cutter…


you need to have your paper turned to the landscape view, and the first time around, set your desired margins and grid… (two rows and four columns) put the first chapter (maybe first two chapters) teasers, author bio, cover, buy & author links, etc… and print out your four pages (front and back printing)… this  is not your booklet… this cheat sheet shows you what info/wordage goes in each cell ….

next you put use this guide to put what goes in cell one, in one… in cell 20, in 20… etc… (on the computer you have four pages in landscape mode, but use two-sided printing so you end up with two pages)

28 : 5  / 26 : 7

32 : 1  / 30 : 3

back of page (pg 2 in computer)

8  : 25 / 6  : 27

4  : 29 / 2  : 31

this is the front and back view of the first page… once you use your paper cutter you have four pages of your booklet… you can either but the cover in cell one *(1) or just start out with your chapter … and print out covers later… if you choose to do the covers later, then you have …

back pg / cover / back pg / cover

back pg / cover / back pg / cover

instead of numbers, you follow the back pg/cover method… otherwise your cover is in cell one and the back pg is in the last cell…

and this is the front and back of the second page… or page three and four on the computer before printing…

16 : 17 / 14 : 19

12 : 21 / 10 : 23

on back (*pg 4 on computer)

20 : 13 / 18 : 15

24 : 9  / 22 : 11

make sure to print out and save your cheat sheet… the one with the cells numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, etc… so that you can easily check to see if you have the correct info in your cell… otherwise, just cut and paste from your saved cheat sheet to your booklet… good luck and happy wordage, tracey

Best Earrings Yet…


these things are sooooo dang cute… by far, my faves…. they have a hoop of beads with a dangly flower in the middle… mom suggest I do this with some of the baby bling… I immediately pictured one of the strollers dangling in the middle… like  rock-a-bye baby earrings… 😛


most of ya have probably seen what I needed to make these earrings, but I thought I would throw it in here again for anyone new dropping by… you need wire (not too soft), wire cutters and rounded pliers, charms & beads, and the post of your choice… woo who…

see ya later guys, tracey

more ear bling :P

I am loving these dangly earrings with charms… they are adorable… now the piece I was working on that was more complex…. welllll… I have dismantled it… lol… I was too heavy, and that was when I was halfway through…

I thought that if they felt too heavy, in my hand, they would kill a person’s ears… I think I will either turn the charm (a splitter like thing so you can have three things/charms/beads hanging from the charm) into a cute pendant for a necklace, or a different type of design… I thought of a different way to use it in an earring design that might not be so heavy…

I really hope my new earring design isn’t too heavy… in my head, it looks really cute… lol… we’ll see when I finally get it put together… fingers crossed…

okay… later guys… tracey

Fairy Lanterns

how cool is this… my aunt sent this to me, and I love it… you can do it with just about anything… if you’re not a fairy person, I see so many other things you can catch in your jars… very cool…


I hope these links work for you, so you can check out the tutorial, but if not… just type Fairy Lantern Tutorial into your computer, I found it immediately …

anywho… here is the Facebook page and the YouTube site … good luck guys… I would love to see what you all come up with… personally, I want to see if I can trap lightning and sprites in my jars… muhahahah…

Preggo Bling… :P


I am still working on (@$#^%^@W%#$ – its a secret… muhahaha) but I wanted my cuz Erin to have some Preggo Bling so I came up with these… there are some really cute baby charms out there… but these are two of my faves…


if you look hard enough, and price shop, you can find just about anything … I tend to get sucked in, with no hope of ever stopping, when I start searching for charms… lol…

okay… this is a short one… check out the Ear-ring post to see how I made these… it is easy if you have patience and a steady hand… two things I usually have trouble with… later guys… tracey



making these dangly earrings was both hard and easy… the concept is simple enough… it is the steady hand and patience that might make you want to scream… okay…. make me scream…


first you gather up your tools and materials… you need wire (not too soft), wire cutters and some rounded needle nose pliers… pick out the type of post you want to use, and some charms … and I added some beads…

I did my best to make the wire tight when is circled/knotted through the circles of the post and the charm… and wow was that a pain in the arse… but if you have time, a steady hand, and the ability not to get aggravated… you can make your own jewelry, no matter what type of pretties you want to accent your outfit… even better, you can find post in different shades of metal, and (not 100% sure) I think you can find gold/or gold plated posts… very cool….


I have another piece in the works, one that is a little more complex, but it isn’t done yet… I may have to finish it next week… right now it is driving me crazy…

later guys, tracey…