Drain fruit cocktail, pineapple chunks and cherries. Drain mandarin oranges separately.
Mix cream cheese (it's a lot easier at room temp or even you can put in micro-wave for 20 to 30 seconds to soften) with a spoon. Mix in cool whip with cream cheese gently. Add a couple of tablespoons of splenda and capful or so almond extract. (If you want to use sugar instead of splenda, that would be fine also)
Now, fold in cream cheese/cool whip with fruit cocktail/pineapple/cherries mixture. Add sliced banana’s if you want…..remember banana’s do darken on leftovers and are kinda ugly…..fold in mandarin oranges…they are very delicate and brake easily. Add a couple of cups of shelled walnuts. You can also add anything else you might think would be good in here….such as raisins, apple chunks or even marshmallows. Whatever sounds good to you! Put in bowl. I usually try to chill the bowl ahead of time (if I remember!!!) At this time I usually sprinkle a row of coconut around outer edge of bowl on top then a row of sliced almonds, another row of coconut, a row of almonds until I reach the center…if I remember to hold out 1 cherry. I put that in the center…
Now you cover with plastic wrap and put in fridge until you serve it/eat it…