I always loved music boxes when I was a kid. I had several and even had the innards from a couple of broken ones I inherited from a teenage neighbor who had over wound hers. I was never above dismantling them to retrieve the cylinder and the little toothed comb that created the music. Even though they would no longer wind I could coax music if I maneuvered it manually. Childhood left and I grew up, but my fondness for the sound of music boxes never did.
Years ago I started collecting Christmas music boxes. I wanted only whimsical ones and my only stipulation was they must be porcelain or ceramic (no metal, plastic, or resin for me) and they had to play different tunes. After accumulating 9 variations on a theme of Santa, 2 angels and 1 creche I decided enough was enough. I place the Santas on the den mantle which acts as a nice sounding board and increases the volume of the music. When I am here alone I wind them up, let them go and enjoy the sweet sounds.
I also have not put the lights in the fake greenery yet, mainly because I can't find my command adhesive strips. I know where the actual hooks are, just not the sticky stuff and I refuse to buy something I know I have here__somewhere.
The Santa picture in the middle was once a painted canvas I bought at a garage sale for 50 cents. I can't buy canvases nearly that cheap, so with a little gesso, a little paint and a little effort I had a Santa picture. Since I already had the gesso and paint I was only out half a buck and an hour or so of time.
2 cups browned ground beef, drained well
1 onion diced
1 can seasoned pinto beans, drained
1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can hominy or whole kernel corn, drained (yes I used hominy because I had no corn. No clue why I had hominy though)
1 medium can whole chilis, cut in slices
1 tablespoon chili powder (I used half regular and 1/2 chipotle because we like heat)
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 package corn bread mix, prepared according to package directions.
Grated Cheese for the topping (I used about 2 ounces because that is all I had in an opened package)
In a large oven safe bowl mix all the ingredients except for the cornbread mixture and the cheese. Blend it well then smooth the top to make a relatively even surface. Spread the cornbread mix over the top of the beef/vegetable mixture and smooth with a knife so it is a uniform thickness. Pop in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 35 minutes, until the inside is bubbling and the cornbread is fully cooked. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the cheese on top of the cornbread. Serve it piping hot. It would have been great with a salad, but I have not been to the grocery store since we returned from Oregon, so the cupboard is kind of bare.
This is tasty, filling and best of all it can be thrown together in 5 minutes and bakes unattended while you finish wrapping presents, decorating, or just sitting and listening to music boxes.
Only Eartha can do justice to this song Enjoy!