Yesterday I talked a little about prepping the freezer for our hectic holiday season. Well, the freezer hasn't been the only thing being prepared. With so much cooking taking place during the holidays I try to think of things that I always seem to have to "make a run" to the store for. Cream of chicken, cream of mushroom, pudding mixes, refried beans, ranch dressing mix, cake mixes, brownie mixes, cookie mixes, hot cocoa, marshmallows, country pepper gravy, and the list goes on. To date I've made my own mixes which are much healthier than the store packages with all of their preservatives. I even made a huge batch of the Faux McDonald's Mocha Frappe powder that turned out amazingly identical to the real deal. The marshmallows are a must for the grandkids and their hot cocoa so I bought the mini marshmallows, cut them in half and dehydrated them. With most of these mixes I can also reduce the sugar content drastically since DH is diabetic. I've begun putting together alot of soup mixes using dehydrated or dried beans and veggies and seasonings. It then becomes a matter of emptying the jar into a slow cooker or soup pot with water and the meal is done. Now is also the time to dehydrate those oranges, lemons and apples for fall wreaths/potpourri/decorations. For those of you without a dehydrator, this can be done in a conventional oven as well or out in this intense summer sunshine. Get your thinking caps on friends. What seasonings/spices/mixes do you use often during the holidays that can be prepared now?