The “Day After”

Today is now the “Day After” – after youngest got home from Band Camp and middle son is now slowly recovering from Tonsillitis. It was interesting around here last night listening to the groans and moans. Youngest was exhausted (as were all of the kids who went to camp – guess they didn’t get much ‘down/rest’ time) and complaining of sore muscles and fatigue; middle son just got home from work and was really still feeling sick and very tired (manager kept them way after closing to finish cleaning/readying the store for the next day) – it was a very good thing they both were too tired to argue/fight with each other because they were both VERY testy! Ah, the fun of being a Mom, eh?

It’s now 11:15 a.m. – youngest is still in bed sleeping, middle is up watching tv, drinking green tea and eating a bagel w/ cream cheese. After calling around to get him a follow-up doctor check up, turns out the earliest we can get one is Sept 14th! He & I both decided that we’d make the appointment and, when that date gets close if he’s feeling a LOT better, we’ll just cancel it. I know that sounds strange but he has NO insurance and is too old to still be on the family insurance, so doctor visits for him are very expensive (not looking forward to the bill for the emergency room visit!).

Last night was the “Parent’s Bar-be-cue” for the Band kids & their families; afterward was their first actual performance for the families. The food was good (hot dogs/hamburgers, potato salad, tossed salad, chips), the performance was really good, considering these kids had only actually been together as a group for two and a half weeks! Come Monday practice officially starts Mon & Weds, 6-9 p.m. – lots of groans were heard when that was announced – you could tell the kids were really tired, but it didn’t show during the performance!

Today will be a ‘getting back to normal’ around here – tons of dirty laundry to be done (which now resides in an army duffel bag) from Band Camp. Later on I will be able to cook an ACTUAL DINNER for the family! That sounds weird, but with youngest gone and middle son sick, my husband just decided that we’d ‘finish off the leftovers’, so I haven’t actually COOKED a MEAL since Saturday! (Yes, some of you are thinking: “And that’s a BAD thing?”). I don’t know about you, but sometimes I just have this need to ‘take care of my family’ – which usually comes out in the form of cooking. Tonight is chicken stir fry with rice and tossed salad & fresh veggies; been wanting to cook that for a week now!

Speaking of food, here’s a few ‘yummy sounding’ recipes for ya!



3 pounds red creamer potatoes, scrubbed and rinsed well
2 cups ranch dressing
3 ounces bacon crumbles or pieces
2 cups grated cheddar cheese
4 scallions, sliced

Place the washed potatoes into a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer until knife inserted in center of a potato comes out easily (20-30 minutes, depending on the size of the potatoes). Drain potatoes and cool. Dice potatoes and place into a large bowl. Toss with remaining ingredients and refrigerate.Makes 8 servings. (Trish 1_Comfort_Foods)


Chicken Deli Casserole (crockpot)

1  (32 oz)  can sauerkraut-rinsed and drained
1 C. low calorie Russian salad dressing
6 boned and skinned chicken breast halves
1 T. prepared mustard
1 C. Swiss cheese — shredded
fresh parsley

Place half the sauerkraut in a 3 1/2 quart electric slow cooker.
Drizzle on about 1/3 cup of the dressing. Top with 3 chicken breast
halves and spread the mustard over the chicken. Top with the
remaining sauerkraut and chicken breasts. Drizzle another 1/3 cup
dressing over the casserole. Refrigerate the remaining dressing until
serving them.

Cover and cook on the low heat setting about 3 1/2 to 4 hours, or
until the chicken is white throughout and tender.

To serve, spoon the casserole onto 4 or 5 plates. Sprinkle 3 to 4
tablespoons of cheese over and drizzle about 1 tablespoon of the
Russian dressing on top. Serve immediately, garnished with parsley.

Recipe By : The Best Slow Cooker Cookbook Ever
(Comment from another poster about this recipe: “I used pork instead of chicken because the chops were defrosted. Simply magnificent. We now have a new favorite.”)

Chocolate Eclair Cake

16 oz. pkg. graham crackers
2 (3.5 oz) pkgs. French Vanilla instant pudding mix
3 cups milk
16 oz. Cool whip
8 oz. chocolate syrup

In a 9×13 pan, put in one layer of graham crackers. In a large bowl,
mix the 2 pkgs. pudding mix and the milk and beat together with a
fork until thick. Add half the cool whip. Spread half of the
pudding mixture on top of the crackers. Add another layer of
crackers, then layer the remaining pudding mixture on top. Pour a
thin coat of chocolate syrup on top. Add another layer of crackers
on top of the syrup. Refrigerate overnight. Layer the remaining
cool whip on top before serving.


Well, that’s the ‘goings on’ around here lately; the weather has been (to me) AMAZING! Chilly at night (got down to 45 degrees last night! BRrrrrrrr!); sunny and warm during the day (79 yesterday). THAT’S what I call a good day/night! Warm enough to enjoy the day without roasting, cold enough at night to get a good sleep in! (Youngest has a really dark tan on his face from all the marching in the sun, day after day – almost didn’t recognize him last night! That, and he had his hair spiked up stiff on top; he doesn’t usually wear it that way and informed me that he’s going to be doing that for all performances in the future. Guess the guys in the band decided to ALL do that…sigh)

Enjoy your day and evening – hope YOUR weather is really good!



Published in: on August 27, 2010 at 10:44 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , ,

Finally – a Good Report!

After spending part of the morning and afternoon driving middle son to several medical treatment places, I can breathe a sigh of relief! Let me back-track a bit: he’s been having fevers for going on 5 days now, they range from 99.5 to this morning’s 102. I should insert here that he’s a 21 yr. old MAN (by his thinking, anyway) and doesn’t think he needs to go see a doctor – “It will just go away.” He’s also been having a constant headache, muscle aches, etc. Finally, after trying to convince him YESTERDAY to go see someone, he agreed today. Because he has no medical insurance, we opted to go to the CVS “Minute Clinic” – they’re fast, not too pricey, etc. We got there, she asked a few questions and the next thing I know she’s asking me to PROMISE to take him immediately to an emergency care facility! With my mind racing through all sorts of questions like: “could it be…meningitis?” we went to Emergency. About 1 1/2 HOURS later, it turns out it’s tonsillitis! Thank you, Lord! “Here’s a prescription for amoxicillin.” I vaguely remembered a friend saying that some pharmacies around here charge a very low fee for penicillin drugs so I called Meijers. YAY! Turns out it’s FREE! YES- you read right – FREE! WOW! I’m really impressed. (Now, mind you, I’m SURE that the bill for the Emergency room will be way more than we thought, but getting free meds. is good, too!) They also asked that he get a follow-up at his family doctor (he only has/had his Pediatrician!) I just called there to see what they would charge for this (no insurance) – answer: It starts at $40-$100″…OUCH! Called the MinuteClinic – thye charge $69! Guess we’ll figure that out later, but for right now I’m just very grateful it’s only tonsillitis!

Youngest is still at Band Camp and will be returning tomorrow evening; it’s been a very quiet week until today. Told middle son that I guess he thought it was too dull and he needed to spice it up a bit!

Hope your week is coming along nicely;



Published in: on August 26, 2010 at 8:37 am  Comments (1)  

34th Wedding Anniversary

Pam & Earl, 34 years!

Went out for Chinese dinner to celebrate. 34 years and still going strong!

Published in: on August 20, 2010 at 7:58 pm  Comments (3)  

Thursday Ramblings

It’s already Thursday and I find myself thrown into the beginnings of the new school year – today was Registration for my youngest (11th grade). 8 a.m. found us (and probably about 100 other kids & parents) following the many lines which ran us through the process called Registration. Get your forms, get the Student ID photo taken, another line – another request: “Getting a yearbook this year? ON SALE today for only $65! (will cost more later in the year). Any book fees/fines from last year? Can’t get fully registered until they’re paid! (this year we lucked out . . . yay!) One more day of band practice for youngest then it’s get ready to pack and be up and fully ready for the 7:30 pick up Sunday morning. Band camp: Sunday – Thurs., then arrive at school (for students), eat lunch, practice more, then greet parents at 5:30 for the Parent/Student Band BBQ dinner and their first ‘show’! This Saturday will find me painting props for the band (I volunteered – have to get 10 ‘Parent Hours’ in for the year); not exactly sure just what they ‘are’ or how they’re ‘used’, but I’ll be there painting them! This year youngest will not only be in the two choirs but also the Color Guard, which means he will be attending all football games (not sure about basketball) and then there’s what’s called: Winter Guard! Don’t exactly know what that is, but he wants to be in that, too…sigh. Yep, gonna be a really BUSY year coming up very soon! (Our school doesn’t start until the day after Labor Day).

Perusing my many recipe lists and their offerings, I began to notice I was having a tendency towards Summer-fresh offerings (even if they’re not all Main course menu stuff):


Killer Marinated Tomatoes

6 large tomatoes, cut into wedges (or equal amountof

halved cherry, grape, or pear tomatoes)

3 T.fresh parsley, chopped
2 T. fresh basil, chopped
1 T. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1 1/2 tsp. seasoned slat
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
3/4 tsp.  dried thyme
3/4 C. canola oil
1/2  C. red wine vinegar
3  scallions, sliced

Whisk everything but the tomato wedges together in a bowl. Add the tomatoes and stir to coat. Marinate at room temperature for at least 2 hours; stirring every  now and then.


Texas Crab Grass (appetizer)

10 oz  pkg. frozen spinach
1/4 lb butter
1/2  C. onion, chopped
6 1/2 oz  crabmeat
3/4 C. Parmesan

Preheat oven to 350º F.
Thaw spinach. Squeeze water from spinach and set aside.
Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add

spinach and onion and saute until onion is translucent, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Add crabmeat and Parmesan, stirring well to blend. Transfer spinach mixture to 1-qt casserole and bake 15-20 minutes. Or transfer mixture to crockpot to keep warm, stirring occasionally. Can be served hot or cold with crackers. Makes 1/2 cup per “serving”.


Spinach, Tomato and Red Onion Salad With Warm Bacon Dressing

8 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 T. balsamic vinegar
Salt and ground black pepper
2 T. olive oil
10 oz. (about 15 cups) pre-washed baby spinach (wash it again, use a salad spinner)
1/2 medium red onion, sliced thin
1 C.cherry tomatoes, halved and lightly salted

Fry bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crisp, about 7 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon. Drain on paper towels, reserving 1/4 cup of the warm drippings. As bacon fries, mix mustard, vinegar, and a large pinch of salt and pepper in a small bowl. Whisk in oil, then set aside.

Place spinach, red onion, tomatoes and bacon in a large bowl. Whisk warm bacon drippings (reheat, if needed) into dressing. Add dressing to salad; toss to coat. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary, and serve. Serves 8.
(Trish    1_Comfort_Foods Digest)


Butter Pecan Squares

1 box (18.25 ounces) Butter cake mix
3 eggs
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cups chopped pecans
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Pre-heat oven to 350º F.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the cake mix, 1 egg, butter, and pecans. Mix well; press into a greased 9×13 pan. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together cream cheese, 2 remaining eggs,
and powdered sugar until well combined. Pour over crust and
bake for 45-50 minutes or until top is golden brown and center is set.
It should be gooey, but not runny. Cool completely before cutting, 1-2 hours. Store in the refrigerator.


See what I mean? My tastes are either Fresh/Summer or Summer/SWEET!!! Oh, speaking of sweets (which I shouldn’t

be, but…) I just wanted to mention my newly found ‘treat’:  Nutella.

If you’ve never tried it (or heard of it) it’s a Hazelnut and chocolate ‘spread’ – I LOVE hazelnuts (or some people call them Filberts), so to combine them with a cocoa-based chocolate-tasting spread is really THE BEST! It’s been suggested that you can dip pretzel sticks in it, or fresh fruit (but honestly… I just love about a T. of it, by itself! WICKED-GOOD! On that note, happened to spot the following recipe:


Chocolate Caramel Ice Cream Pie

1 cup Nutella (chocolate hazelnut spread)
1/2 pint dark chocolate ice cream, softened
1 9-inch dark chocolate cookie crust
3/4 pint caramel (dulce de leche) ice cream, softened
1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts, optional
Caramel sundae syrup

Place unopened jar of Nutella in a pan of hot water and 
let sit 10 minutes (or heat 1 cup in a bowl in a 
microwave set on high for 10 to 15 seconds). Spoon 
chocolate ice cream into cookie crust and use a spatula
to smooth surface. Drop teaspoonfuls of Nutella 
(about 1/2 cup) on top of ice cream. Place in 
freezer for 15 minutes. Spoon caramel ice cream
over Nutella and return to freezer for 15 minutes.
 Drizzle remaining 1/2 C. of Nutella over top of 
caramel ice cream. Top with hazelnuts, if
desired. Freeze until firm, 3 hours or overnight.

Before serving, allow pie to sit at room temperature 10
minutes. Cut slices with a large knife dipped in 
water and dried with paper towels. Drizzle a small 
amount of caramel syrup on dessert plates and
top with a slice of pie. Serves 6.

CALORIES 585 (1% from fat); FAT 34g (sat 11g); 
 337mg; PROTEIN 7mg; FIBER 3g
(Recipe du Jour)
Haven't tried it, but it sounds really good!
Ok, my blog server is starting to give me trouble
now so I'll close.
Published in: on August 19, 2010 at 11:40 am  Comments (1)  

It’s HOT But…I’m still Baking

Tomorrow is my ‘turn’ at Sunday School class snacks; I thought I’d avoid the ‘hot kitchen & baking’ but didn’t quite accomplish that. Bought a really nice-looking pecan coffeecake from Kroger (really good deal: $3.99!) and sliced it into serving-sized pieces; then proceeded to bake up 36 cranberry-orange mini-muffins, but still that didn’t seem ‘enough’ for our class of 40-50 (depending on the day). That sent me back to see what else was in my cupboards – lo and behold: Pumpkin Bread mix! So now baking in my oven is a loaf of Pumpkin Bread to go along with the mini muffins and coffee cake – think THAT will be enough. (I should state here that my husband likes it when there’s ‘leftovers’ to bring home – a little ‘treat’ after church.)

Along with heating up the kitchen baking, I’m learning to operate a new (to me) device: a small laminating machine (donated by my good friend Michelle!). For as complicated as the directions were, it’s actually very simple to use. Place item to laminate into lamination ‘sleeve’, slip into machine (it sort of grabs it mid-way) and wait for it to come out the other side! Presto-chango you’re done! (except for trimming). Pretty ingenious, if I do say so myself! The machine takes about 15 minutes to warm up and about a minute to do it’s job – not bad.

Don’t know about you, but I certainly will be glad when this HEAT WAVE breaks – it’s not just the outside heat, it’s the awful humidity! I’m sitting here in shorts and a light top and sweating my little buns off (Oh, pardon me: Men sweat – women ‘glow’!) At this point in time, I’ve just about reached RADIANT! It’s now 2:55 p.m. with the inside-house temperature of 84 degrees, with 73% humidity – AIR CONDITIONING where are you??? (sorry for the rant).

On a lighter note, here’s a few cool-sounding recipes:


Italian-style Tacos

1 lb. Italian sausage, casings removed
1   green pepper, chopped
1 jar (15 oz.) spaghetti sauce
12   TACO BELL® HOME ORIGINALS® Taco Shells, warmed
1-1/2 C.  shredded Mozzarella cheese
3 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
1 tomato, chopped

Cook sausage and peppers in large skillet 8 to 10 min.or until sausage is done, stirring occasionally; drain.

STIR in spaghetti sauce; simmer 5 min. or until heated through, stirring occasionally.

FILL taco shells with sausage mixture and remaining ingredients.

Serves 6

(Kraft Foods)


Cream Cheese Brunch Bars

2 tubes crescent rolls
2 (8 oz.) pkgs cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar, divided
1 egg, separated
1-2 teaspoons cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350º

Spread one tube of the crescent rolls in a 9 X1 13 baking pan,patting edges together to make a solid crust.  Whip the cream cheese, one cup of the sugar andthe egg YOLK (save the white for later). Spread on the crust.  Top with the other tube of rolls; you can leave these separate if you want or squeeze together to form a solid top.  Glaze with the beaten egg white.  Mix together the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and the cinnamon.  Sprinkle over the egg white and
bake at 350 degrees F for about 20 minutes.


That’s it for now; stay cool and remember to relax when you can!



Published in: on August 14, 2010 at 2:25 pm  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , ,

Still Hot ‘n Humid…sigh

(Like the thought!)

Yep, we’re ‘roasty-toasty’ here again today. It WAS cooler earlier (it’s now 2:45 .m.) but gettin’ warmer…sigh. Grandson is due in about an hour so trying to catch up on crocheting the border on afghan #255. Still working on the baby blanket (about 4 inches done so far – it’s slow going at 152 stitches per row). Not much else on the horizon special; youngest has the day off from band practice today because there’s a parent/instructor meeting this evening – he’s glad for a small break. Checked out another knitting mystery at the library: “Skein of the Crime” –  it’s a rather ‘fluffy’ read) and read it in a day; finished the one before that: “Drop-Dead Stitch” last week.  The author is Maggie Sefton and she writes about her knit group and their various activities, so for those of us who like ‘fiber’, it’s a quick read.

Let’s see – need some recipe ‘filler’ here –


Sweet and Spicy Crockpot Chicken

1 lb. (about 2) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 (14-oz.) can petite or regular diced tomatoes, undrained
1/3 C. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

Place chicken in bottom of the crockpot.In a small bowl, combine  tomatoes, brown sugar and red pepper flakes. Pour over chicken. Cover and cook on high4-6 hours or low for 8-9 hours. Remove chicken to a cutting board and shred with two forks. Return to crockpot
and mix chicken with the juices from the tomato/brown sugar sauce. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve in flour tortillas or over tortilla chips with toppings of choice: lettuce, sour cream, cheese, avocados, etc. Serves 4



1 pkg. yellow cake mix
4 C. fresh or frozen chopped. rhubarb
1 cup sugar
1 cup whipping cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Prepare cake according to box directions. Pour into 9 x 13 greased pan; sprinkle rhubarb and sugar on batter. Slowly pour on the cup of whipping cream. Bake in a 350 oven 40-45 minutes. Can be served with additional whipped cream.


(Yes, I know the cake has to be baked = heat in kitchen, but this recipe sounded SO good, just couldn’t resist!)

Well, that’s the wrap-up for this day; hope you’re staying cool in whatever way you can.



I DO love the Internet (most of the time)

For example, today I’ve been perusing my various knitting books, trying to find a suitable knit pattern for the next upcoming baby blanket. I’ve ‘swatched’ (for you non-knitters, it means doing a small square using the pattern you want, to get an idea of how it looks, how it will hold up, etc.) at least 6 different patterns, but none to my liking. Yes, I’ve done many other baby blankets but each time I want to try to do a different one, even if the recipients will never see each others blankets. (Yes, I can be weird…) I even resorted to visiting my OWN web site (The Ghana Project) to see the photos I’d posted of the various stitches – still nothing. At last I decided to check out the ‘net – I’d already checked my favorite source: Ravelry (a knitting & crocheters site with tons of free patterns).  I had spotted a pattern in one of my books for a stitch that looked simple, but because I knit different than anyone I’ve ever met (I’ve discussed this before: I knit a variation of the Continental style BUT it’s enough of a variation that I can’t follow some patterns because of the way my stitches are made!).  TO THE NET! Lo and behold, there were TWO variations of the Star Stitch – both of which I can not only follow, but with great gusto! I’m psyched! It’s a fairly easy pattern, 4 rows, so it should go rather quickly (yes, I’ll post a photo when it’s all done). Once again, I plan on bordering this white afghan in a variegated ‘baby-colors’ crocheted border and will also probably knit several hats and booties. Also found an adorable knit ‘bunny’ – sort of looks like a small blankie with hands & face – that will be for my ‘if I have time’ project (see photo above). It’s been fun doing all these searches – I’m just glad I finally found what I was looking for!

It’s been a rather quiet weekend around here (for a change); middle son went on a camping trip and youngest (after his birthday celebration day) went on an all day group trip with his church Youth Group to “Michigan Adventures”, a amusement and water park near Muskegan, MI (that’s around 3 1/2 hours away). We were a bit worried because they were (I thought) due back at the church by 8 p.m. (someone goofed on the flyer – that was the time they planned on leaving the park!) so I got to, once again, practice my texting: “How is it going?” (answer: Good – we’re on our way!). After some more worrying on my part, he finally got home at 1:45 a.m.! We were all a little psyched up and had great trouble going to sleep, hence all were very groggy this morning for church! (Youngest & I both took about a 2 hr nap after church-hubby seemed no worse for the wear and just played his World of Warcraft on his computer). Tomorrow youngest starts Band Practice for their Color Guard, Mon-Fri 9-3 for the next 2 weeks, then Band Camp. Going to be the start of a very busy ‘end of summer’ for us.

Found a couple good-sounding simple recipes for ya:


Stuffed Zucchini

2 zucchini, , halved lengthwise
3 C cooked rice
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1/2 lb ground beef

Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Saute pepper and onion. Set aside. Brown hamburger and add to sauted pepper and onion. Mix rice in with beef and veggies. Scoop rice mixture into each zuchini half. Wrap filled halves in tin foil. Bake 30-40 minutes.


Mozzarella and Tomato Salad

2 oz. mozzarella cheese, cut into very thin slices
2 medium tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 T. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. dried parsley
1/4 tsp. dried basil
1/4 tsp. granulated sugar or the equivalent in artificial sweetener
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper

On a large plate, alternate slices of tomato and mozzarella cheese. Arrange slices so that the top half of each tomato is not covered with cheese. Mix red wine vinegar, olive oil, Dijon mustard, parsley, basil, sugar and black pepper. Drizzle the mixture over salad just before serving. Serve at room temperature for maximum flavor. Serves: 4.


Cobb Rollups
The combo of the turkey, bacon and crunchy broccoli slaw make this rollup a step above the rest. It’s got the taste of a cobb salad but it’s much more fun to eat!

1 pkg (6) sundried tomato basil wraps
6 T. mayonnaise
3 C.  broccoli slaw
12 deli slices (1 ounce each) smoked turkey breast
18 thin slices fully cooked bacon (can use turkey bacon)

Place the wraps on a cutting board. Spread 1 tablespoon mayonnaise over each wrap. Sprinkle 1/2 cup broccoli slaw in the center of each wrap; place 2 slices of smoked turkey over the slaw; top each with 3 slices of bacon. Fold in the sides of each wrap, covering half of the bacon. >From the end closest to you, roll up each wrap firmly, rolling away from you. Cut each wrap in half and serve immediately, or roll each in wax paper and refrigerate until ready to serve. Serves: 6


That’s what’s going on around here lately; the weather has been cooperating for the most part –  90’s but not the high humidity we were having. We’ve got the house fans running and it’s tolerable. Hope you are staying cool and enjoying your summer!



(got another afghan done: #254)

Another year -another Birthday boy!

Today our youngest turns 16; ah, the ‘magical’ age. He’s requested his favorite dinner: “Meat & Potato Pie” (basically a meatloaf frosted with mashed potatoes & melted cheddar cheese). He will be going to the beach with friends later and then home for dinner. On the menu, also, is his ‘other’ favorite: Dairy Queen’s frozen ice cream cake; very yummy.

Yep, it’s still hot here (been hovering between the high 80’s and low 90’s). Yesterday our in-house thermometer was registering 82 degrees with 75 % humidity (still no air conditioning). This kind of heat makes doing any kind of yarn projects almost a challenge. Finally finished afghan #253 and began sewing together 254; I was wondering why I managed to get so many done last summer and then remembered: we had ‘air’ last summer! Oh well – ya do what ya can.

Almost done with fuzzy, lace knit scarf #2 – will probably finish later today. That was definitely a challenge getting through 8 rows of constantly changing stitches; it was worth it – just hard to keep on track. One of my “Mega-Square Knitters” (Gwen) brought another 2 1/2 bags of squares today. I tried to gently ask her if she’d like to take a break from knitting squares for me and she said: “No Way! My friends are all complaining about having high blood pressure and stress – I tell them: ‘Take up Knitting!’ I don’t want to take a break!” (Wow – how’s THAT for devotion!?) I gave her another bag of donated yarn; it all works out in the end – people give me yarn, I pass it on to those who knit for me!

Hope you have a GREAT day!



Published in: on August 6, 2010 at 9:28 am  Leave a Comment  

New Technology!

Here’s one for ‘older people learning new things!’ Youngest son and I just got back from the cell phone store – he needed one and I needed an upgrade. We’re now both new owners of MetroPCS camera/texting, etc. phones! Now, I realize a lot of you out there already know all about TEXTING – but this lady is just learning (and it’s the source of lots of laughs). First thing off the bat? I managed to take a picture of my knees! Why, you ask, would I need a photo of my knees? I don’t – I didn’t even know I did it! Ah yes – technology! Ain’t it grand! I’ve been a cell phone owner for many years, albeit not a ‘hip/groovy/with-it’ user – just your plebian, drab, dull ‘make only phone calls’ user but now it’s time to get into the next century (or something like that). Youngest was in great need of a cell and we’ve already gone through the TracPhone – they might be good for some people, but when you have a son who burns up minutes texting like it’s water, they’re not the plan for you! I checked out Sprint, Verizon, AT&T-all have good stuff, just not what I needed (OR could afford) at this time. I wanted 2 cell phones with unlimited texting and talk time (camera is good, but not needed), didn’t want the Internet browsing or all that extra stuff. We managed that for $80 a month – for BOTH phones! I thought that was really good. I needed a way to contact my son wherever he is – and it seems, these days, people don’t TALK on their cells as much as they TEXT each other. Starting this month he will begin a new regimen of ultra-activity with the beginning of band practice daily, Mon-Fri. He’s chosen to be a part of the school Color Guard and they practice all the marching, banner-carrying, etc. Along with that, at the end of this month starts our local area Renaissance Festival and he will be ‘working’ at that to earn part of the monies for their Band Camp. Since the Renn Festvl is about an hour’s drive from our house, you can see the need for a way to keep in contact should he need a ride or anything else. The cell phone became part of his 16th birthday present (his birthday is this Friday). He’s happy with the cell and is already texting all his friends (mine is happily charging it’s battery right now.) I can easily see me laughing my way through learning the in’s & outs of this new piece of technology. Since both of us have the exact same phone, I’m going to be making a cell phone charm for mine – just in case we accidentally grab the wrong one. (Hey, I’ve got tons of beads around here and they don’t look too difficult to make!).

That’s what’s happening around here; now I’m off to research how to change the ring tone to my old standard: from Handel’s Messiah: “The Hallelujah Chorus!”

Enjoy your day!



Published in: on August 2, 2010 at 2:50 pm  Comments (1)  

Here’s the Birthday Scarf!

(You cant see them, but there’s 2 rows of clear seed beads on the bottom hems of the scarf – a little extra ‘bling’!)

Very simple stitch, took me from Thursday to Sunday (on and off) to finish it. I actually think sewing all those tiny little seed beads to the hems almost took me longer than all that knitting. (Used the invisible thread – the clear plastic stuff- and the needle kept coming unthreaded – UGH!) Will pick up a box of mixed herbal teas to go with this and we’ll call it DONE!

Ran into another good-sounding Summer recipe you might like:


Creamy Shells with Peas & Bacon

1 C. whole-milk ricotta

1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese

2 T. unsalted butter, cut into several pieces

salt & pepper

1 T. olive oil

4 slices bacon, cut into 1/4 inch stripsp

1 medium onion, chopped fine

2 medium garlic cloves, minced

1 lb. small shell pasta or penne

2 C. frozen peas

1 T. lemon juice


Bring 4 quarts water to boil in large pot. Place ricotta, Parmesan, butter, 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper in bowl large enough to hold cooked pasta. Fry oil and bacon in medium nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp, 6-7 minutes. Transfer bacon to plate lined with paper towels. Add onion to empty pan and cook until lightly golden, about 3 min. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 min. Transfer onion mixture to bowl with ricotta mixture.

Meanwhile, add 1 T. salt and pasta to boiling water. When pasta is about 1 minute shy of  al dente, add peas and continue to cook for 1 minute. Reserving 1 C. cooking water, drain pasta and peas. Add 1/2 C. cooking water and lemon juice to ricotta mixture and whisk until smooth. Add pasta and peas to bowl and toss to coat, adding more reserved cooking water as necessary to moisten pasta. Stir in crisp bacon and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper to taste. Serves 4.

(recipe: “Cook’s Country” magazine, Charter issue)


Managed to lay out 6 more afghans to prep them for sewing together; looks like I’ve got my ‘work’ cut out for me! Now back to knitting the second white, fuzzy scarf – that’s my only ‘project’ at the moment. I discovered a few days ago that my (deceased) best friend Toni’s daughter is now expecting, so looks like there’s another baby afghan in the future (plus a few hats and booties) – but, for now, I’m only focusing on finishing white, fuzzy scarf #2! (All things in due time, eh?)

Hope you’re having a great day!