Sundays are for… well, lots of different things

I want to thank all my friends on Facebook for the many topic suggestions. I’ve got a lot of work ahead of me. You guys are the best.

I’ve been getting a lot of reports regarding credit card credit limits. As I said in my post about changes in terms of service, make sure you open every piece of mail from your credit card companies. These companies are now sending notices reducing credit limits.

If you have a $5,000 limit and pay down your balance to $3,800, you may receive a notice stating that your limit has been reduced to $4,000. This can cause a lot of havoc to your credit score since part of your credit score is based on available credit. Overnight, your available credit can go from $1,200 to $200 through no fault of your own. Now is a good time to make every effort to pay down your credit cards and get debt free. As your credit score goes down, your interest rates can go up. With the economy getting worse by the day, make sure you have your financial house in order.

I can’t believe we are 11 days from Christmas. I’m trying to get my Christmas gifts together without spending a ton of money. I’ve made a lot of gifts. Being a knitter saves me a ton of money each holiday. Plus, it’s incredibly theraputic. I’m also going to be making cookies and candy as last minute gifts. I’ve started trying out different recipes. Last night, I made sugar cookies. I just buy sugar cookie mix (on sale with coupons of course) and colored sugar. You can make cookie dough from scratch if you wish. After making the dough, I roll teaspoon sized balls. Put colored sugar in a plastic container and drop in a ball of dough. Swish it around until covered well and bake according to package directions. Pack the cookies in a plastic bag then wrap them in tissue paper with pretty ribbon. It’s a nice hostess gift or last minute gift. Kids love them, too. If you have a party to go to, bring a plate of cookies. People will love them!

This morning, I tried my hand at making toffee. I love toffee and homemade candy makes an awesome gift. Plus, it’s so easy to make, as long as you use the right equipment. Here’s what you need:

  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 2 sticks of butter
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1/2 chocolate chips

Melt the butter in a heavy sauce pan (2qt). Don’t use a huge pan or the mixture just won’t come together correctly. Add the water and sugar. You need to keep stirring this the entire time. A candy thermometer is a necessity. Bring the mixture to a boil on medium heat. Make sure you use a heat proof spoon or spatula. My first batch was ruined at the last minute because my spatula melted. You’ll see the mixture become lighter and almost the consistency of marshmallow. Then it will start to darken and become the color of caramel. You are just about finished. This process will take about 10 minutes. When the toffee gets to 300 degrees (I take it off a few degrees early), pour your toffee onto a cookie sheet covered with aluminum foil. Top with chocolate chips. After about a minute, the chocolate will have melted enough so you can spread it over the toffee. If you wish you can top the chocolate with finely chopped nuts. After an hour, break the toffee into smaller pieces and package it up. Awesome, inexpensive gift that will really impress people. Who makes candy anymore? WE DO!

Do you make home made gifts? I want to hear what you’re making.

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