Of Veterans, Vireos and Variety

Today, as you know, is Memorial Day – that space in time when we stop to remember and give thanks to all those who have served, are serving or have given their lives in service of our great country. No matter how long or short, their service is remembered for, without it, we would not be enjoying the freedoms we, as Americans are afforded. Freedom is NOT free – it costs and I am grateful for their service this day.

This morning my middle son went outside, then quickly came back in to tell me to quietly go look on our porch. There, sitting in our child/car seat was a bird – specifically, a Vireo. This is a small, finch-sized bird with beautiful yellow-green coloring  and bright RED eyes! (actually, this kind is called a Red Eyed Vireo). Why he was on our porch, I have no idea-we have an open area where he probably flew in; my husband gently coaxed him into a bucket and took him outside (we’re not exactly sure if he could fly, he didn’t appear to have a lot of strength). I don’t recall ever seeing one of this particular bird before, but it was nice to see it upclose – sure hope he pulls through.

  As to the ‘variety’, that title goes to my ‘creative’ chicken salad concocting. These past few days have been a smorgasborg of foods for our family, ranging from grilled chicken breasts, tacos and BLT’s. Nice foods to have in your fridge as leftovers BUT . . . they need to be used up, too. That brings me to my ‘variety’ – got up today saying to myself: “What are we going to eat for dinner?” I had 3 large cooked chicken breasts, some leftover chopped green pepper  & onion (tacos), some celery (just hangin’ in the chiller drawer, needed to be used) and came up with the idea of chicken salad. Well, upon viewing the contents of our Miracle Whip jar and knowing there might be more BLT’s in the very near future, I came up with the idea to ‘modify’ it some. Mixed about a cup of sour cream with about 1 1/2 C. of Miracle Whip, then mixed in about 3 T. Kraft horseradish sauce (for zip), some salt, pepper, garlic powder and minced dill and stirred it all up. Cooked up a 1 lb. box of macaroni and threw it all together – it’s now chillin’ in the fridge for later. (I must admit – it’s pretty tasty!) Also made a small batch of brownies – I very rarely make up sweets for the guys, so I thought perhaps it being a holiday, I’d go for it. Dinner will be a smorgasborg of leftovers. You could have: a BLT, some coleslaw (made that a few days ago), some chicken salad, or tacos! Kinda strange foods to go together, but around here, with 3 guys – it works!

The temperatures are climbing, sun’s out brightly (87 degrees F.) and youngest should just about be finishing up our local Township parade. He’s carrying the high school band banner (it’s what he’s done for 3 years now and loves it). Afterwards the color guard group are going to one of the member’s houses to swim in their lake for the afternoon – typical TEEN-type summer activity (and sounds like fun to me, too). The rest of us are just ‘chillin’ – I’m going to work on ‘the green baby blanket’ again and maybe put in a little more time on the embroidery. A lady from my church gave me two chemo caps she knit using my pattern – that brings the total donated caps to 61 now. (sort of reminds me of when I was doing the Ghana Project afghans – somehow you just get ‘into’ keeping count, sort of a little ‘personal goal’ thing.)

For those of you who might still be looking for recipe inspirations, here you go:


 Pepper Slaw



6 C. shredded cabbage

2 C. red or green peppers,

thinly sliced

1 1/2 C. thin sliced celery

1 C. onion, thinly sliced

1 C. shredded carrots

1/2 C. vegetable oil

1 1/2 tsp. celery salt

1 tsp. cracked black pepper

1/2 tsp. celery seed

2 T. sugar

3 T. cider vinegar

1 T. dry mustard

Toss vegetables together in large

mixing bowl. Combine remaining

ingredients; pour over vegetables-

toss to mix. Refrigerate several

hours or overnight to blend flavors.

Serves 10-12

Comment from poster:

“This recipe can be taken to

outings and not worry about

keeping it cool; it even

gets better as it sits”

(recipe: Shirley-justapinch.com)


Grilled Pita Breads
4 pita breads
2 tsp. fresh rosemary
2 T. olive oil
1/3 C. coarsely crumbled feta 
2/3 C. coarsely chopped mushrooms
1 T. fresh oregano

Place large piece of foil on
grill rack. Crush rosemary into
the oil. Place pitas on foil, 
brush liberally with rosemary
oil, top with cheese, mushrooms
& oregano. Grill on low heat with
cover down until cheese melts. Cut 
into sections, like pizza.

(recipe: carolsrecipes77-
Marys Recipe Exchange)
BLT Pasta Salad
8 oz. dry penne pasta, uncooked
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes,
1/3 C. mayonnaise
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1 (6 oz) pkg. refrigerated
diced oven roasted chicken
10 slices fully cooked bacon,
heated & chopped
2 C. baby spinach leaves,
coarsely chopped

Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. 
directions; drain & rinse under
cold water until cool. Stir
together drained tomatoes, 
mayonnaise & garlic salt in
large bowl. Add pasta, chicken
& bacon; toss to combine. Add
spinach & gently toss. Serve
Serves 6 (1 1/3 C. each)

(recipe: readyseteat)
Sauteed Zucchini & Tomatoes
1 T. cooking oil
4 small zucchini, sliced
1 (14.5 oz) can stewed
tomatoes, undrained
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper

Heat oil in large skillet over
medium-high heat. Add zucchini;
cook 7 minutes or until tender,
stirring occasionally. Add 
undrained tomatoes, salt &
pepper. Break up tomatoes with
spoon; cook 2 minutes more
or until hot. 
Serves 4 (3/4 C. each)

(recipe: readyseteat)
Pan Roasted Corn
1 T. cooking oil
1 (16 oz) frozen whole
kernel corn
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. salt

Heat oil in large non-stick
skillet over medium-high
heat. Add corn, cook 10-12
minutes or until corn starts
to brown, stirring occasionally.
Stir in chili powder, salt &
Serves 4 (1/2 C. each)

(recipe: readyseteat)
Bacon Stuffed Eggs
12 large eggs
4 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled
1 (3 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
1/4 C. mayonnaise
2 tsp. prepared horseradish
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. pepper
(chopped chives - garnish,
if desired)

Place eggs in a large saucepan,
add water to depth of 3 inches.
Bring to boil, cover & remove
from heat. Let stand 15 minutes.
Drain & fill saucepan with cold
water & ice. Tap each egg firmly
on the counter until cracks form
all over the shell. Peel under
cold running water. Slice eggs
in half lengthwise; carefully
remove yolks. Mash yolks with 
mayonnaise in bowl; add bacon
& next 5 ingredients; stir
well. Spoon yolk mixture into
egg whites. Garnish, if
desired. Makes 24 servings.

(recipe: RDJ 05/10/12)
Oreo Mint Chocolate Chip Freeze
26 Oreo cookies, crushed
(2 crushed Oreos - set aside)
1/3 C. butter, softened
1/2 gallon mint chocolate chip
ice cream
1 small jar fudge topping
1 container Cool Whip

Mix 26 cookies & butter together;
pat into 9 x 13 pan. Spread
ice cream onto cookie mixture.
Spread top with fudge topping,
then Cool Whip. Sprinkle the
2 crushed oreo's on top of
Cool Whip. Freeze 2 hours.
Serves 8

(recipe: Victoria-justapinch.com)
Tuscan Vegetable Potato Salad
2 lb. small new potatoes, 
quartered (about 6 C.)
1/4 C. water
1/2 lb. green beans, cut into
2 inch pieces
1/2 lb. carrots, diagonally
1 small red onion, cut into
1 C. Italian dressing

Place potatoes & water in 
3 quart microwavable casserole
dish; cover. Microwave on High
10 minutes. Add remaining vegetables,
microwave 10-12 minutes or until
vegetables are tender; drain. Toss
vegetables & dressing. Refrigerate
several hours or overnight.
Serves 8

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Orange BBQ Chicken & Grilled
1/2 C. (Kraft) barbecue sauce
1/2 tsp. orange zest
2 T. fresh orange juice
4 small boneless skinless chicken
breast halves (1 lb.)
1 zucchini, cut lengthwise in half
1 yellow squash, cut lengthwise in
1 red pepper, cut into quarters
1/4 C. zesty Italian dressing

Heat grill to medium heat.
Mix bbq sauce, zest & orange juice
until well blended. Grill chicken
6 minutes, turning after 3 minutes.
Brush with half of sauce. Add
vegetables to grill; cook chicken
& vegetables 9-12 minutes or until 
chicken is done (165 degrees F.) 
and vegetables are crisp-tender, 
turning occasionally & brushing
chicken with remaining sauce &
vegetables with dressing.
Serves 4

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Creamy Mediterranean Spread

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese,
1 (7 oz) jar roasted red
peppers, drained & chopped
1 (4 oz) pkg. crumbled Feta
1/2 C. chopped kalamata olives
(about 40)
1/4 C. balsamic vinaigrette
2 T. chopped fresh parsley

Spread cream cheese onto bottom
of a pie plate. Combine remaining
ingredients; spoon over cream 
cheese. Serve with crackers.
Makes 3 C. or 24 (2 T.) servings

*substitute Greek vinaigrette dressing,
if desired

(recipe: Kraft foods)


Grilled Curry Chicken Breasts
w/Spinach Rice
1 C. white rice
2 1/2 C. baby spinach
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
4 boneless, skinless chicken
breast halves
2 T. canola oil
1 tsp. curry powder

Preheat grill. Cook rice accordg
to pkg. directions; fluff with a
fork. Stir in spinach, 1/2 tsp. 
salt, pepper & cumin. Cook until
warm. Coat chicken on both sides
with oil. Mix curry powder & 1/2 tsp
salt in a small bowl; rib into 
chicken. Grill chicken over medium
with lid closed for 10 minutes,
turning once, or until cooked
through. Serve with rice. Serves 4

(recipe: newspaper flyer)

Enjoy your holiday and give thanks for
our freedoms.





Saturday, You’re Here!

Well, here’s to the beginning of a 3-day weekend for most (for me, it’s just another day – see what happens when you’re retired?). Slow, easy start to the day, cooler temperatures – the thermometer shows 68, but it’s grey and lightly raining – great for flowers, not so great for those who might be having cook-outs, garage sales, graduation parties or weddings – but, that’s Summer, right?

Still plodding along on the baby afghan; I don’t remember if I ever really explained the ‘why’ of this project: one of the ladies in my knit group recently visited our Detroit Veterans Hospital on business. While there she spoke to someone who mentioned they had just held a baby shower for returning women ‘vets’ and she also mentioned they could always use more baby afghans for this project. My friend asked if this sounded like a good cause that we, the knit group, might want to knit/crochet for. I thought it sounded good and started, that day, working on one. I haven’t, as yet, mentioned it to the group as I’m still ‘gently encouraging’ them to knit or crochet dishcloths for the historical society event coming in four weeks. (I’ve learned, with them, don’t overwhelm them with ‘good causes’ as they just sort of ‘shut down’ – to use the old expression: “All things in due time”.) Here’s the blue afghan so far – I found the pattern on line and decided to shrink it for a baby afghan, also tweaked it a bit. My version will have a  white crocheted border (that will also help the ‘curling’ at the bottom). What I didn’t mention is: this is actually mint green – it photos as baby blue. (Too bad I don’t know how to adjust my camera to have the colors come out more ‘true’ – it’s a Kodak $100 digital, so not alot of ‘bells & whistles’ to work with).

Since we’re heading into the holiday weekend, lots more recipes to share with you! There are a few I’ve gleaned from a newspaper insert called: “Pure Michigan”:


Zehnder’s Heirloom Applesauce Cake
(Zehnder’s is a well-known restaurant in
Frankenmuth, MI – well known for their
WONDERFUL fried chicken dinners!)

2 C. flour
1 1/2 C. sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 C. vegetable shortening
2 C. applesauce
2 eggs
1 C. chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Sift flour & sugar with salt, baking
powder, soda & cinnamon; add
shortening & applesauce. Beat at
medium speed with elec. mixer for
1 1/2 minutes. Add eggs; beat 2 more
minutes; fold in walnuts (if using)
Pour batter into greased & floured
9 x 13 bakingpan. Bake 35-45 minutes
or until a toothpick inserted into center

comes out clean. Allow to cool. Sprinkle
top with powdered sugar, if desired.
NOTE: When using a glass pan, cook
for a shorter period of time.
(recipe: circa 1920’s from files
of Exec. Chef John Zehnder)

Michigan Sour Cherry Pie
(my all-time absolute favorite!)

Pastry for double crust 9″ pie:

2 1/4 C. flour
4 oz. lard (shortening), chilled
1 oz. unsalted butter, chilled
pinch of salt
ice water

Pie Filling:

4 C. sour cherries, pitted
1/4 C. tapioca (Minute brand)
1 C. sugar
1/2 tsp. almond extract 1 egg, beaten

(for top of pastry)

Preheat oven 400 degrees &
place one rack on lower third level
of oven.


In food processor, combine flour,
lard, butter & salt until it resembles corn

meal. Add 5-6 T. ice water. (flour
will be dryer in winter and moister in summer.

 Adjust ice water accordingly)
Mix on Low until just combined. Divide
into two equal discs, cover with plastic
wrap, chill for at least 15 minutes.


Mix together cherries, tapioca, sugar &
almond extract. Roll out one disc of
pastry onto a floured surface to 11 inches.

Gently place in a 9-inch pie pan; set aside.

 Roll out second piece of pastry
to the same size. Brush pastry in pie
pan with beaten egg. Pour in filling;
cover with second piece of pastry.
Turn over edges and crimp. Brush top
with remaining egg; sprinkle 1 T. sugar
to make a great glaze. With a sharp
knife, score the top crust to make
steam vents. Bake 45 minutes. You
should hear the pie ‘bubble’ when
you take it out of the oven.

(recipe: William Gruden of
Reese, Michigan, a Michigan
Sugar Co. contest winner)

Tex-Mex Chicken Casserole

2 C. (16 oz) penne pasta, cooked

accordg to pkg directions

2 C. chicken, cooked & chopped

1 (14.5 oz) can black beans,

rinsed & drained

1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes

with juice

1 C. fresh or frozen corn

salt & pepper, to taste

1 (16 oz) jar salsa verde

3/4 C. sour cream

1 C. shredded Pepper Jack cheese

1/2 C. shredded Mexican Blend

cheese (Kraft)

lightly crushed tortilla chips

1/4 C. cilantro, finely chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

Spray 9 x 13 pan with cooking

spray. Place cooked pasta, chicken,

black beans, tomatoes & corn in

dish. Season with salt & pepper;

toss to mix. In another bowl, combine

salsa & sour cream; pour evenly

over chicken mixture. Sprinkle top

evenly with both shredded cheeses;

cover with foil, bake 15 minutes.

Remove foil, bake another 15

minutes or until cheese is melted

& bubbly. Sprinkle top with

crushed tortilla chips & cilantro.

Serves 4-6

(recipe: HomeMadeSimple.com)


Black Bean, Mushroom &

Cheese Enchiladas

1 T. olive oil
8 oz. white mushrooms, stems
removed & chopped
1 T. ground cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1 (15.5 oz) can black beans,
rinsed & drained
1 (4.5 oz) can diced green
1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
plus more for topping
1/2 C. shredded Monterey
Jack cheese, plus more for
1/4 C. sour cream plus more
for topping
1/4 C. chopped fresh cilantro,
plus more for garnish
salt & pepper, to taste
8 large flour tortillas
1 (10 oz) can enchilada sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 x 13 pan with spray, set
aside. Heat oil in large skillet
over medium-high heat. Add
chopped onion & mushrooms; saute
until just soft, about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat, stir in cumin &
chili powder. Let cool slightly,
stir in black beans, diced
green chilies, both cheeses,
sour cream & cilantro. Stir until
well blended. Season to taste
with salt & pepper. Divide
mixture between the 8 tortillas,
placing filling just off center
of each tortilla. Roll into
loose cylinders. Place, seam-
side down, in prepared pan. Pour
enchilada sauce over top & 
sprinkle with additional
cheese. Bake until bubbly & 
lightly browned, 15-20 minutes.
Let stand 5 minutes before
serving. Garnish with 
additional sour cream & chopped
cilantro. Serves 4-6

(recipe: HomeMadeSimple.com)
Cheese, Beef & Potato Bake
1 1/2 lb. ground beef
1 medium onion, diced
1 medium stalk celery, diced
32 oz. can tomato sauce
4 oz. mushrooms, sliced
1/2 C. water
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. pepper
3 medium potatoes, thinly sliced
4 oz. Mozzarella cheese, shredded

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Cook beef, onion & celery in 
large skillet until browned.
Stir in tomato sauce, mushrooms,
water, salt, sugar & pepper. Heat
to boiling; reduce heat to low.
Cover & simmer 5 minutes. Spray 
9 x 13 baking dish with nonstick
spray. Spoon 1/3 of mixture into
pan, arrange 1/2 of potato slices
on top. Repeat, ending with ground
beef mixture. Cover dish with foil,
Bake 1 hour or until potatoes are
tender. Remove from oven, remove
foil, sprinkle top with cheese,
bake until cheese melts.

(recipe: Sue - RDJ -04/13/12)
Luscious Grape Salad
1 (10 oz) tub Kraft
Philadelphia original 
cooking creme 
1/4 C. packed brown sugar
4 C. each: seedless green &
red grapes, halved
2 C. fresh pineapple chunks*
1/2 C. slivered almonds,

Mix cooking creme & sugar in
large bowl. Add remaining
ingredients; mix lightly.
Serves 12, 1 C. each

*can substitute chopped
apples for pineapple

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Quick & Easy Taco Dip
1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese,
3/4 tsp. taco seasoning mix
1/3 C. salsa
1 (8 oz) pkg. shredded Cheddar

In medium bowl, mix cream cheese,
taco seasoning mix & salsa. Spread
mixture into shallow serving
dish or an 8 inch baking pan.
Top with Cheddar cheese & chill
1 hour before serving.

(recipe: Mary Free-Marys
Recipe Exchange)
Blue Cheese Burgers(grill)
1 1/4 lb. ground chuck
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/2 C. crumbled blue cheese
1 red onion, sliced
1 T. olive oil
4 sesame seed hamburger buns
1/2 C. baby spinach

Preheat grill. In a bowl, mix
ground chuck, Worcestershire sauce,
& pepper. Form into 8 thin patties;
put 1 T. cheese on 4 patties &
sandwich each with remaining patties
(makes 4 burgers, 2 patties each).
Brush onion with oil & sprinkle with
salt & pepper. Grill onion & patties
over medium 8-10 minutes, turning
once, until onions are soft and a 
meat thermometer inserted into center
of each patty registers 160 degrees F.
Line bottom of 4 burger buns with
spinach; place burgers on spinach;
top with remaining blue cheese, grilled
onion & bun top. Makes 4 burgers.

(recipe: newspaper flyer)
Grilled Parmesan Vegetables

2 each: zucchini & yellow
squash, cut into 1/2 inch
thick slices
2 each: green & yellow
peppers, cut into 1 1/2
inch wide strips
1/3 C. zesty Italian dressing
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Heat grill to medium heat.
Grill vegetables 10 minutes or
until crisp-tender, turning
occasionally. Place in large
bowl, add dressing-toss to
coat. Sprinkle top with cheese.
Serves 8

(recipe: Kraft foods)

It's raining again; a few days ago
I bought a new sand box for our
grandson. Husband just went out to
shovel out the old sand to use as
a base under the new box.(Why? Because
old sand had been wet too many 
times and had grown a green 'top',
guessing it was a type of algae?)
In the next few days we'll go visit
our local hardware store for four 50-lb.
bags of play sand to fill the new box.
I'm sure it will be well-used this 

Enjoy your day, even if it's raining!




It’s SNOWING! . . . no, wait . . .

it’s snowing COTTONWOOD!

cottonwood ‘cotton tufts’ on a branch

 Don’t know about your neck of the woods, but here, every year at just about this time, the air (cars, lawns, etc.) get totally filled with little white fluffy ‘balls’ of cottonwood. I looked out the window earlier and it really did look like we were having a snow storm, it was flying around that thick! Strange stuff, this cottonwood – the fluffy little ‘balls’ contain a seed (God’s way of carrying on the plant & it’s growth, I guess) which floats on the wind, then lands and takes root. Not sure just why, but we’ve never had a cottonwood tree grow in our yard – Lord knows why, as the grass gets totally covered in the stuff!

Spent some time yesterday working on the (new project) baby afghan. It’s a very simple pattern, only 4 rows, but somehow while chatting with my sons and knitting, I managed to increase by 2 stitches! That was ‘fun’ . . . NOT! Took me about a half hour to rip out a few rows, re-knit, then finally decide to just knit 2 stitches together at the end of the row to end up with the required number of stitches. Sometimes EASY isn’t always that easy. It’s an interesting pattern, sort of a take on another pattern I have which is sort of a ‘mock’ cable stitch (meaning you don’t have to take stitches off onto a THIRD needle, then re-knit them into the row). (had this great idea to post a photo of the pattern, but alas – Ravelry won’t let me ‘copy & paste’, even if it’s in my ‘library’ of patterns.) Sorry . . .

The weekend is quickly coming – do you have any special plans for cook-outs, picnics, etc? We’re probably going to do the same thing we do every year – stay home. Haven’t planned any special menu for the holiday – need to go to the grocery store and just can’t seem to get motivated – sigh. Youngest might be marching in our local Waterford Township parade along with his school’s band; he hasn’t exactly decided yet (he’s done it the past two years).


Marinated Hamburgers


3 T. lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp. seasoned salt

1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 T. soy sauce
1 T. A-1 sauce
1 T. oil
1/2 C. beef broth
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. vinegar

Mix above ingredients together. Take 1 1/2 lb.

hamburger & shape
into patties. Place patties in
covered container & pour
marinade over hamburgers; cover
& refrigerate 12 hours or overnight.

Remove from marinade &
sear over high heat to seal in

(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe

Summer Zucchini Salad 
4 small zucchini, sliced 
1/2 C. sliced red onion 
1/4 C. shredded Parmesan cheese 
1 T. cooking oil 
1 T. lemon juice 
1/4 tsp. dried oregano 
1/4 tsp. salt 
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper 

Toss all ingredients together 
in medium bowl. 
Serves 6 (2/3 C. each) 

(recipe: readyseteat) 
African Chicken Stew  

1 tsp. cooking oil 
1/4 tsp. salt 
1 1/4 lb. boneless skinless 
chicken thighs, cut into  
1/4 C. creamy peanut butter 
1/4 C. water 
1/2 tsp. garlic powder 
1 (10 oz) can Ro*Tel diced 
tomatoes & green chilies, 
1 lb. (2 medium) sweet 
potatoes, peeled & cut into 
1 1/2 inch pieces 
2 C. frozen bell pepper &  
onion strips 

Spray inside of crockpot with 
nonstick spray. Heat oil in 10 
inch skillet over medium-high 
heat. Sprinkle salt over chicken 
& add to skillet. Cook until  
browned, stirring occasionally. 
Stir in peanut butter, water, 
garlic powder & undrained 
tomatoes; cook until mixture 
is blended & chicken is coated. 
Layer sweet potatoes & frozen 
vegetables in crockpot. Top  
with chicken mixture; cover & 
cook on Low 7-9 hours or 
until chicken & vegetables 
are very tender. Gently 
stir to mix. 
Serves 6 (1 C. each) 

(recipe: readyseteat)
Quick German Potato Salad 
1 pkg (20 oz) refrigerated 
diced potatoes with onion 
4 slices bacon, cooked to 
crisp-tender& crumbled 
3 T. light mayonnaise 
3 T. cider vinegar 
3 T. sliced green onion, 
tops & bottoms 
1 T. firmly packed brown 
1 tsp. spicy brown mustard 

Spray large skillet with non- 
stick spray; heat over medium- 
high heat. Add potatoes & 
cover; cook 15 minutes or until 
tender, turning occasionally.  
Combine mayonnaise, vinegar, 
onion, brown sugar & mustard 
in medium bowl. Add potatoes & 
bacon to mixture & mix lightly. 
Serves 6 (2/3 C. each) 

(recipe: readyseteat)
Frozen Lemonade Pie
(overnight recipe)

2 C. graham cracker crumbs
1/4 C. sugar
7 T. unsalted butter,


2 C. heavy cream
1 (14 oz) can sweetened-
condensed milk, chilled
1 (6 oz) can frozen
lemonade concentrate
(DO not thaw)


1 C. blueberries
1 C. raspberries
2 T. sugar
1 T. fresh lemon juice

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In medium bowl, combine 
graham cracker crumbs, sugar,
& melted butter. Press firmly
onto bottom & up sides of 
9 inch pie plate; bake 7
minutes, cool completely.

In a cold medium bowl, whip
cream until stiff peaks
form. In another bowl, stir
condensed milk & frozen 
lemonade together. Gently
fold mixture into whipped
cream; pour filling into
crust; freeze overnight.
About an hour before
serving, prepare topping.
Toss berries in medium
bowl with sugar & lemon
juice; set aside. Allow
pie to come to room 
temperature for 10
minutes before cutting.
Top each slice with berries.

(recipe: Food Network)
Onion-Apple Pork Chops
2 boneless pork loin chops (4 oz, ea)
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1/4 tsp. lemon-pepper seasoning
2 tsp. olive oil
1 medium apple, peeled &
thinly sliced
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1/3 C. chicken broth
2 T. maple syrup

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Sprinkle chops with garlic salt
& lemon-pepper. In large oven-
proof skillet, brown chops in
oil. Remove & keep warm. Stir
in broth & syrup; bring to a
boil. Reduce heat, simmer, 
uncovered, 5-7 minutes or until
liquid is almost evaporated.
Return chops to pan; cover &
bake 15 -20 minutes or until
a thermometer reads 145º
Serves 2

(recipe: Peg-Marys Recipe
Exchange-via Taste of Home)
Pineapple Chicken Wings
2 1/2 lb. split chicken wings,
tips removed
2 (8 oz, ea) cans pineapple
tidbits in juice, undrained
1 C. barbecue sauce

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Place wings in 9 x 13 pan
sprayed with nonstick spray.
Bake 30 minutes. Drain
pineapple, reserving 1/4 C. 
juice. Mix barbecue sauce,
pineapple & reserved juice;
add to chicken, stir to
evenly coat chicken. Bake
30 minutes or until chicken
is done & sauce is thickened.
(serves 15)

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Crockpot Blueberry Dump Cake
1 (21 oz) can blueberry pie
1 box yellow cake mix
1/2 C. butter, softened
1/2 C. chopped walnuts

Place pie filling in crockpot.
Combine dry cake mix & butter;
sprinkle over pie filling then
top with chopped nuts. Cover &
cook on low 2-3 hours.

(recipe: carolsrecipes-Slow
Cooker digest)

That's about it for today - enjoy the
warmer weather (hopefully you ARE enjoying
warmer weather!); our temperatures have 
climbed and husband is now fiddling with
the air conditioning (of course, I'm 
FREEZING!) - ah well, the 'sounds' of
summer: "I'm FREEZING!" - (him: "It's
79 degrees out, how can you be freezing?")
"Maybe because it feels like 50 degrees in
this house!" Oh well - enjoy your day!



Will You be Grillin’?

After looking at many holiday recipes for this coming weekend I realized that it’s time to get out the GRILL! With great recipes coming in from my various recipe sites, it’s time to start sharing them with you so that you will be prepared to cook up some fantastic meals for Memorial Day!


Grilled BBQ Chicken Wraps

1 lb. boneless skinless
chicken breasts
3 T. Italian dressing
1/2 C. barbecue sauce,

4 (10 in) flour tortillas

1 C. shredded mild Cheddar
1 tomato, chopped

Heat grill to medium heat.
Brush chicken with dressing;
grill 6-8 minutes on each side,

or until done (165º F.)
brushing with 1/4 C. sauce
for last few minutes; cut
into strips. Spoon remaining
sauce down centers of tortillas,
top with chicken, cheese &
tomatoes. Fold in opposite
sides of tortillas; roll
up burrito-style. Grill,
seam-sides down, 8-9 minutes
or until golden brown,
turning after 5 minutes.
Serves 4

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Cheese-Stuffed Bacon Burgers 

1 lb. ground beef 
1/4 C. A1 steak sauce, divided 
4 Kraft singles (Amer cheese) 
4 hamburger buns 
4 lettuce leaves 
8 slices cooked bacon, 
broken in half 

Heat grill to medium-high heat. 
Mix meat & 2 T. steak sauce;  
shape into 8 (1/4 in thick) 
patties. Fold each cheese 
slice into quarters; place 
on 4 patties. Top with  
remaining patties; pinch 
edges together to seal 
Grill 5 minutes on each 
side or until done (160ºF) 
placing buns, cut sides 
down, on grill grate the  
last 2 minutes. Fill buns 
with lettuce, burgers,  
remaining steak sauce & 
Serves 4 

(Kraft foods) 
Sesame-Ginger Coleslaw 

1/3 C. Miracle whip dressing 
2 T. Kraft Asian Toasted 
Sesame dressing 
2 T. fresh lime juice 
6 C. finely shredded cabbage 
1 C. show peas, diagonally 
cut into 1 inch pieces 
1 carrot, coarsely chopped 
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced 
2 green onions, finely chopped 
1/4 C. chopped fresh cilantro 
1 T. minced ginger 
2 T. sesame seed, toasted 

Mix first 3 ingredients until 
well blended; combine all  
remaining ingredients except 
sesame seeds, in large bowl. 
Add dressing mixture; toss 
to coat & top with sesame 
seeds. Serves 8, 1 C. each 

(recipe: Kraft foods) 
Grilled Vegetables w/Cheese Sauce 

1 zucchini, cut diagonally into 
1/2 inch thick slices 
1 yellow squash, cut diagonally 
into 1/2 inch thick slices 
1 red onion, cut into 1/2 inch 
thick slices 
1 each: red & yellow bell pepper, 
cut into 2 inch wide strips 
2 T. olive oil 
1/2 C. milk 
12 Kraft singles, chopped 
(American cheese slices) 

Lightly brush grill grate 
with vegetable oil before 
preheating to prevent 
vegetables from sticking.

Heat grill to medium heat. 
Toss vegetables with oil; grill 
4-6 minutes or until tender, 
turning after 4 minutes. Micro- 
wave milk in small bowl on High 
1 minute. Stir in chopped 
Amer. cheese, microwave 1 
minute or until completely 
melted & sauce is well  
blended; stirring every 30 
seconds. Serve vegetables 
topped with sauce. 
Serves 12 - 1/2 C. each 

(recipe: Kraft Foods)
Orange BBQ Chicken & Grilled
1/2 C. barbecue sauce
1/2 tsp. orange zest
2 T. fresh orange juice
4 small boneless skinless chicken
breast halves (1 lb.)
1 zucchini, cut lengthwise in half
1 yellow squash, cut lengthwise in
1 red pepper, cut into quarters
1/4 C. zesty Italian dressing

Heat grill to medium heat.
Mix bbq sauce, zest & orange juice
until well blended. Grill chicken
6 minutes, turning after 3 minutes.
Brush with half of sauce. Add
vegetables to grill; cook chicken
& vegetables 9-12 minutes or until 
chicken is done (165 degrees F.) 
and vegetables are crisp-tender, 
turning occasionally & brushing
chicken with remaining sauce &
vegetables with dressing.
Serves 4

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Easy "Baked" Tomatoes 
(grill or oven) 

4 large tomatoes, cut in half 
1/4 C. balsamic viniagrette 
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese 

(Option: can sprinkle tops  
with chopped fresh basil or 
parsley before cooking)

Heat grill to medium heat. 
Place tomatoes, cut side up, 
in disposable foil pan. Drizzle 
with dressing, sprinkle tops 
with cheese. Grill 15 minutes 
or until tomatoes are soft and 
cheese is lightly browned. 

Preheat oven 350 degrees F. 
Place tomato halves, cut sides 
up, in 9 x 13 baking dish. 
Top with dressing & cheese; 
bake 15-20 minutes or until 
tomatoes are soft & cheese 
is lightly browned. 

Serves 4. 

(recipe: Kraft foods) 
Chewy Cherry Almond Bars

1 C. butter, softened
2 C. packed brown sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 egg
1 tsp. almond extract
2 C. flour
2 C. regular rolled oats
1/2 c. sliced almonds
1 (12 oz) jar cherry preserves
(1 C.)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line a 9 x 13 baking pan with
foil, extending foil over edges
of pan. Grease foil; set aside.
In a large bowl, beat butter with
elec. mixer on medium-high speed
30 seconds. Add brown sugar & 
baking powder. Beat until 
combined, scraping sides of
bowl occasionally. Beat in egg
& almond extract until combined.
Beat in as much flour as you can
with mixer. Using a wooden spoon,
stir in any remaining flour, the
oats & almonds. Remove 1/2 Cup
of dough and set aside. Press
remaining dough evenly into 
bottom of pan. Spread with 
preserves; crumbled remaining
dough evenly over preserves.
Bake 35 minutes or until
lightly browned. Cool 
completely in pan on wire
rack. Using edges of foil,
lift the uncut bars out of
pan. Cut into bars; makes 36 
(recipe: Peg-Marys Recipe

It's a rather quiet day here and a bit chilly-
although the thermometer says 73 degrees F., it's
not sunny and I'm wearing a sweater. Had to get up
a bit early today as youngest didn't wake up in
time, so I drove him to school (at 7:15 a.m. it
was 55 freezing degrees - and I forgot to grab
a wrap so I was shivering!) Not much planned
yet for the day; tonight's Knit Group - I 
never really know how many people to plan for.
I have a website for our group and it provides
'signing in' to say if you're coming or not;
still people don't sign in. I usually try to
set up tables for about 10 people, then we 
can always add more chairs if more come. 
With the summer and more activities, our
group seems to thin a bit; tonight's the
night to remind the ladies we only have
four weeks until Log Cabin Days and any
knitting/crocheted dishcloths to be 
finished for the Historical Society.
(Wow-that never ceases to amaze me -
Log Cabin Days always seems to sneak
up on me, even if I KNOW it's coming!)
Right now I'm about 1/4th into another
Clive Cussler spy/mystery book, this
time it's "The Spy"; it came highly 
recommended by a friend from church
who keeps telling me: "You'll REALLY
like this one!" (hope so, right now
it's rather boring and I'm just plugging
ahead because of his recommendation).

Enjoy your day!



Good News in Small Batches

Sometimes good news comes in BIG batches and, sometimes in small – but I’ve learned that ALL good news is welcome. Today we got a phone call for my youngest to go for a job interview at Panera Bread Wednesday – YAY! We only put in the application a little less than two weeks ago and I spoke with their manager today (I’ve gotten to know him, as that’s the same location my knit group meets at). He told me that my son is on the ‘short list’ for applicants – that’s GREAT! I’m excited – the location is really close (5-7 minutes, depending on the time of day and traffic, maybe 12 minutes?). They are looking for part-time and that’s just what my son needs; they said they’re more than willing to work around school schedules (he will be starting summer school in a few weeks 7:15 a.m. – 12 noon). Really glad this opportunity is coming for him – hope he gets the job. The other good news is almost related to the first: just read today in our local paper that our Township is going to phase out the GED and extra high school classes for those who didn’t graduate – that will effect my son. I called about it and, yes, they are phasing out the GED part, but the alternative high school he will be attending in September is NOT in the cut – YAY! See what I meant about good news in small batches?

Our weather is now very summery – sunny, warm with not much of a breeze – 78 degrees. Not sure what we’re having for dinner; I got out chicken breasts but they’re not defrosted – we’ll see what happens with them later. Went through the refrigerator freezer this morning and sorted/pitched, etc. Just wanted to get an idea of ‘what’s available’ for quick meals. Noticed a ‘trend’ of sorts, not much beef – just fish, chicken & pork with one small beef roast; oh well – make due with what you’ve got, right?


Carrot Cookies w/Mascarpone




1 box Duncan Hines Decadent

Carrot cake mix

2 eggs

1/2 C. butter

1 C. very hot water

1 C. dry oats


1 C. sugar

1/3 C. heavy cream

1/4 C. butter

1/4 C. mascarpone cheese

or cream cheese, softened

1 C. powdered sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 C. chopped toasted

almonds or pecan halves

This cake mix comes with a

packet of cake mix and a

packet of dehydrated carrots &

raisins. Mix carrots/raisins

with the hot water; let sit

10 minutes. Drain & press out

all water; set aside.

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

Prepare cookie sheets with

parchment paper, or spray

with nonstick spray. Beat

cake mix & butter together.

Beat in eggs one at a time.

Stir in oats & drained

carrot/raisin mixture until

all is well mixed. Drop by

tablespoons onto sheets. Using

a spoon dipped in water to

prevent sticking, press each

cookie slightly flat. This

is important because the

cookies do not spread. Bake

13-14 minutes; remove from

pans, wait about 5 minutes

then remove to racks to cool.


Bring sugar, cream & butter to

a full rolling boil; boil 1 minute,

remove from heat. Stir in

mascarpone (or cream cheese) by

spoonfuls until all is melted

and combined. Stir in powdered

sugar & vanilla. Keep beating

by hand 5-7 minutes until it

thickens. To frost cookies,

leave cookies on racks with

waxed paper underneath. Spoon

frosting over cookies, about

1 tsp. per cookie. It will

spread out some and may run

down sides. If it’s too

runny, let it cool a little

longer before proceeding. Press

about 1/2 tsp. chopped toasted

nuts into frosting on each

cookie. (OR) press one pecan

half on top of each cookie.

Makes 2 1/2 dozen

(recipe: Susan-justapinch.com)


Taco Chicken

1 3-4 lb. chicken
1 onion, chopped
1 stick margarine
1 (10 oz) can Rotel tomatoes
with green chilies, drained &
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of 
mushroom soup
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of
chicken soup
1 C. grated Cheddar cheese
1 (7 oz) bag Doritos taco
or nacho chips

Boil or bake the chicken; remove
meat from bones; save 1 C. broth.
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large skillet, saute onion in
margarine; add tomatoes, soups &
broth. Heat & cook until thickened.
Crush 1/2 the chips and spread on
the bottom of a 9 x 13 greased pan, 
covering the bottom. Layer chicken
over chips, then pour soup 
mixture over top. Sprinkle remaining
chips over chicken and top with
cheese. Bake 30 minutes or until
bubbly around the edges.
(recipe-Sandy, Marys Recipe 
Round Steak & Rich Gravy

2 lb. round steak
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 envelope dry onion soup  mix
1/2 C. water

Cut round steak into serving
sized pieces place in crockpot. Add
rest of ingredients; cook on
Low 10-12 hours.
(recipe: 1_Comfort_Foods_Digest)
Swiss & Chive Spread

3 C. finely shredded Swiss
cheese (12 oz)
3/4 C. mayonnaise
1/4 C. chopped chives
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground white pepper

Mix cheese & mayonnaise in a 
bowl. Add chives, salt & pepper;
stir well. Cover & chill until
serving time. Serve with 

(recipe: Lynnda-justapinch.com)
Baked Potato Casserole

5 large baking potatoes,cooked &
6 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled
1 lb. shredded cheese
1 pint sour cream
2 bunches green onions, chopped &
sauteed in bacon grease
salt & pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Mix all ingredients together; pour
into casserole dish. Bake 30
minutes. Serves 6-8.

(recipe: Ramblinjodie-GNR
Simple Asian Slaw

4 C. coleslaw blend 
(cabbage slaw mix)
1 (11 oz) can mandarin
oranges, drained
2 green onions, thinly
1/4 C. (Kraft) Asian
Toasted Sesame dressing

Combine coleslaw, oranges &
onions. Add dressing; toss
to coat.
Serves 4, 1 C. each

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Mama's Lemon Custard Dessert

5 cans sweetened condensed milk
10 egg yolks
2 C. pure lemon juice
1 T. vanilla
2 boxes vanilla wafers
1 stick butter


Finely crush 1/2 box of wafers;
coarsely chop the remaining 1/2
of box. In small saucepan on low
heat, melt 1/2 stick butter. Using
a mixing bowl, mix crushed wafers &
butter together, then spread evenly
over bottom of 9 x 13 pan. Place pan
in refrigerator 15-30 minutes to allow
crust to set.


Open all cans of milk  & pour into a 
large mixing bowl. Add vanilla, gradually
stir in lemon juice until completely 
blended. Separate egg yolks from whites;
set whites aside, stir in egg yolks. 
Mixture should be slightly stiffening
up by now. Once filling is complete, line
sides of the 9 x 13 pan with whole vanilla
wafers (stand them on their sides, upright).
Pour lemon filling into pan; crush a few vanilla
wafers on top of lemon filling for decoration.
Cover with plastic wrap to prevent a film from
developing while chilling in the fridge. Place
dessert in refrigerator for 4-6 hours or until
set. Serves 6-8. 

(recipe: Cheryl-justapinch.com)

Hope you're having a pleasant day.
Remember to stop and smell the flowers - 
there are a LOT of them out there now!



Blue Scarf Done and Kindness Learned

Before Christmas, 2011 I knit another of this same pattern in a heavier-weight yarn in gold. This is the same “Lacy Waves” (dishcloth pattern) – as you can see, it’s pinned to a board to ‘block’ it, hoping that will cure the tendency of this pattern to curl (sideways). Just thought you might like to see the finished product; it’s long enough to wear the way the younger generation wears them – doubled in half, wrapped around the neck and the ends pulled through the loop that forms the ‘half-fold’. This is a graduation gift for a very nice young lady at our church who used to stand next to me in choir (now she’s got a full-time job and can’t get to practices, so she dropped out of choir; I’ll miss her!).


On a different note, just read in the local “Parade” magazine some interesting comments by Colin Powell, former Scretary of the US. This article is titled: “Kindness Works” from his new book: “It Worked for Me”. In one part of the article he quotes a elderly priest from his church: “Kindness is not  just about being nice; it’s about recognizing another human being who deserves care and respect.” Further along in the article he writes: “You can never err by treating everyone with respect, thoughtfulness, and a kind word. Every person in an organization has value and wants that value to be recognized. Everyone needs appreciation and reinforcement. ” He then goes on to quote an old saying: “To the world, you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world.”  Great words to think on.



Published in: on May 19, 2012 at 4:56 pm  Leave a Comment  

Saturday the Pammie Slept in!

After picking up youngest son at 12:30 a.m. from his all-day Cedar Point trip/concert/event, I slept in until 10 a.m.! (that’s late for me). Have spent the last 2 1/2 hours leisurely/lounging at my computer with a nice hot cuppa coffee and perusing the internet, emails, web sites, etc. I must say – Pinterest has certainly got me hooked. There are all sorts (let me repeat myself ALL sorts) of interesting, intriguing, sometimes shocking/ideas/projects/tips/recipes – you name it, it’s there. I find myself wandering through almost like you’d wander through a store you really enjoy. For guys it would be a hardware store or auto parts store; for women perhaps a fabric/crafts store, or clothing/shoe store or even a greenhouse. Let’s see – today I found interesting/fascinating things: a really cute idea on how to make a baby mobile using yarn, felt & embroidery hoops (which would make a very nice baby shower gift), several really easy-yummy recipes (a recipe for ‘the best’ iced coffee homemade and one for a very easy throw-together cake using cake mix & pie filling), a few interesting/cute quotes, a very creative use for Mason jars which are then put together to make a hanging lamp (like for a kitchen). I’m sure there were others; much like when you wander in a store you like, your brain sort of goes to ‘mush-mode’ – you know, when you’re almost over-saturated with ideas/colors/creativity? I can definitely see where Pinterest could take up most of a day just to go through ‘some’ of what’s offered there. (don’t get me wrong – not everything on there I find worth investigating). The site has loads of photos – if you want to find out more about the photo, you click on it and that takes you to the location of the person who put the photo up – if, say, it’s a recipe and you want the recipe, then you click (again) the photo and that takes you to the actual site where the original recipe/idea/project came from and you can get the details of that particular thing.  Confusing, but you can easily get the hang of it.

Sitting here in my jammies, I’m getting the feeling it’s time to post more recipes! The weather is supposed to be really nice today; it’s now 78 degrees out with an expected High of 84 (WOW!) and the next few days look clear and warm until Tuesday (slight showers and 69 degrees) – looks like Summer is FINALLY coming! YAY! Two really pretty yellow iris are blooming in my yard – love seeing new blooms!


Chocolate Sour Cream Cake

& Sour Cream Frosting

1 C. flour

1 C. sugar

3 T. baking cocoa

1 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1 C. sour cream

1 egg

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

Coat 8 inch square baking dish

with nonstick spray. In a large

bowl, combine all ingredients;

beat until smooth. Pour batter

into prpared dish; bake 25-30

minutes or until toothpick

inserted in center comes out

clean. Let cool, then cut into

squares. Top with Cool Whip,

sprinkle top with confectioners

sugar or Sour Cream Frosting.

Sour Cream Frosting

1 C. sour cream

1/3 C. confectioners sugar

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 1/2 C. Cool Whip

In medium bowl, combine

sour cream, sugar &

vanilla; mix well. Fold in

Cool Whip; refrigerate until

ready to use. Yields enough

to cover a 9 x 13 sheet cake.

(recipes: Sandy-Marys Recipe



Asian-Style Chicken Bake

2 C. diced, cooked chicken
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 (8 oz) can pineapple chunks
1 (4 oz) can sliced mushrooms,
1 T. soy sauce
1 C. sliced celery
2 T. chopped green onions
1 (3 oz) can chow mein noodles,

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine all ingredients, except
chow mein noodles. Gently stir 
in 1 C. noodles. Spoon into
a greased 8 inch square baking
pan; sprinkle top with remaining
noodles. Bake 45-55 minutes until
hot & bubbly. Serves 4.
(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe
Cheesy Pasta Side Dish

2 C. egg noodles
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. paprika
3 t. margarine, melted
3/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Cook egg noodles in boiling
salted water accordg to pkg.
directions, until tender.
Drain noodles into a colander.
Place drained noodles in large
bowl. Mix melted margarine, 
paprika & Parmesan cheese
together in a bowl then add
to noodles; toss gently
to coat. Serve immediately.
(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe
Broccoli Salad

5 C. chopped broccoli
1/2 lb. bacon, cooked and
1/2 C. raisins (golden)
1/2 C. chopped walnuts (optional)
1/2 C. finely chopped onion
1/2 C. sunflower kernels
1 C. mayonnaise
3/4 C. white sugar
1/2 C. vinegar
1 tsp. fresh black pepper

Chop broccoli; just the florets 
(the tops)into bite-size pieces.In 
a large bowl, add chopped broccoli, 
bacon, raisins, walnuts, chopped 
onions& sunflower kernels.In a 
medium bowl, make  dressing:Whisk 
together mayonnaise, sugar, vinegar 
and black pepperuntil thoroughly 
combined.Pour dressing over salad
ingredients.Give it all a really 
good stir to combine.Can be made a 
day ahead;should be kept stored 
in a bowl with an airtight lid in 
the refrigerator.Stir again just 
before serving.
(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe
Mexican Stuffed Pasta Shells

1 box large pasta shells
1 lb. ground beef
1 (12 oz) jar picante sauce
1/2 C. water
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chilies,
1 pkg shredded mozzarella or
Monterey Jack cheese
1 large can French fried onions

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cook pasta shells, drain; set aside.
Brown ground beef; drain. Combine
picante sauce, water & tomato
sauce. Stir 1/2 C. of liquids into
ground beef along with green chilies,
1/2 C. cheese & 1/2 can Fr. fried
onions; mix well. Pour half of 
remaining sauce mixture on bottom of
10 inch round or 8 x 12 inch baking
dish. Stuff cooked shells with
ground beef mixture. Arrange shells
in baking dish; pour remaining
sauce over shells. Bake, covered,
30 minutes. Top with remaining
cheese & onions; uncover & bake
an additional 5 minutes.
(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe
Applesauce Bars

1/4 C. butter, softened
2/3 C. brown sugar
1 egg
1 C. applesauce
1 C. flour 
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 C. raisins (or craisins)
1/2 C. chopped nuts


1 1/2 C. confectioners sugar
3 T. margarine, melted
1 T. milk
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Grease a 9 x 13 pan. In 
medium bowl, mix together
butter, brown sugar & egg
until smooth; stir in
applesauce. Combine flour,
baking soda, salt & spices;
stir into applesauce
mixture until well blended.
Stir in raisins. Spread 
evenly in prepared pan. 
Bake 25 minutes (check
at 20 minutes with 
toothpick). Cool in
pan over wire rack. In
a small bowl, mix
together confectioners
sugar & margarine; stir 
in vanilla & milk until
smooth; spread over
cooled bars, sprinkle
top with chopped nuts
before cutting into

(recipe: Angie-justapinch.com)
Baked Jalapeno Popper Dip

2 pkgs cream cheese, softened
1 C. mayonnaise
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chilies
1 (4 oz) can jalapeno nacho rings
or jalapenos
1 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Mix cream cheese & mayonnaise
together until smooth. Stir in
chilies & jalapenos. Place in 
baking dish; sprinkle top with
Parmesan. Bake 30 minutes or 
until bubbly & browned. Serve
warm with crackers, chips or
whatever you'd like. It is 
also good at room temperature.

(recipe: Lindsey-justapinch.com)
Watermelon Salad

8 C. loosely packed torn
Boston lettuce
2 C. seedless watermelon
chunks (1 inch)
3/4 C. quartered cucumber
1/3 C. thin small red onion
slices, separated into rings
1/3 C. light raspberry 
vinaigrette dressing (Kraft)
1 T. (Kraft) mayo with
olive oil

Combine first 4 ingredients in
large bowl. Whisk dressing
gradually into mayo until
well blended. Add to salad;
toss to coat.Makes 8 servings,
1 1/4 C. each.

Note: Extra topping suggestion:
Cook 1/2 C. coarsely chopped
pecans or walnuts and 1/4
C. sugar in skillet on medium
heat until sugar is melted
& nuts are evenly coated,
stirring frequently. Spread
onto sheet of foil; cool
Sprinkle over salad just
before serving.

(recipe: Kraft foods

Last night's Gym Night went well but
we only had 24 people attend which meant
we had TONS of hot dogs left over! We
cooked 80, some of the kids ate 3, most
had 2 - that left my 'compatriot/leader' 
and myself with a good dozen each to 
take home AFTER we'd given away quite
a few to the church janitor and another
needy family. I can see warmed up hot
dogs on today's lunch menu for my husband
and sons.  Am going to get dressed (it's 
now 12:45 p.m. - wow, I really AM lounging!)
then go see about deciding whether to crochet
a border on the blue scarf (it was suggested
by another crafter that if I crocheted a 
border on the scarf, it wouldn't curl up -
we'll see; I think it's just because of the
nature of that particular knit pattern which
causes the 'pucker'). Nothin' like a relaxing
Saturday with no particular plans in the offing-
(there IS a book I might pick up: given to me
by a friend at church who also likes the author
as much as I do: "The Spy" by Clive Cussler - 
we'll see.)

Enjoy your day - hope it's a sunny,
relaxing day for you, too!



PS: What'd I tell ya? Husband is heating
up hot dogs as I type! Hehehehe

Been Awhile – Quiet Week

Hello, Everyone!

Sorry I haven’t entered a blog in awhile, really not much to ‘talk’ about (that’s a good thing, right?). It’s a gorgeous day out today (66 degrees right now but it’s supposed to get up to 76 later). The sun is shining, slight breeze – youngest son is at Cedar Point, Sandusky, Ohio right now. Their two choirs and orchestra are performing (imagine that!); I should say that, by now, they will be done(10 a.m.). Once finished, they have the entire day to explore the park then come home by bus (3 hr bus ride-yuck) and we’re to pick them up at school at 12:30 a.m.! I’m pretty sure he will be one very tired young man. Monday I took him to our family doctor for the re-check on the ‘heart pains’ thing he had last month. Our doctor confirmed that he agreed with the ER reports: Costochondritis is an inflammation of the junctions where the upper ribs join with the cartilage that holds them to the breastbone, or sternum. (this FEELS like heart pain, but it isn’t). Apparently, in older people this can be a life-long pain-thing; the doctor said that he’s hoping with a otherwise healthy 17 yr. old it should clear up. Odd thing, eh? It comes and goes, sometimes causing so much pain that you feel like you can’t take a deep breath, then it will be gone for days or weeks, only to suddenly re-appear. Let’s hope that this time it goes away completely!

It’s been a quiet week – grandson’s Mom lost her job 2 weeks ago, so I haven’t ‘babysat’ him in that long a time period; haven’t heard from her as to how the job searches are going (she said she’d inform me when her schedule changes). Tonight is my special needs group’s Gym Night – hot dogs this time (I already chopped up a big onion for it; the other leader gets physically ill if she has to do it, so it’s become ‘my’ job). Like I said, not  much going on – OH! Yesterday morning I looked out my back window only to see a rather large white animal slowly sauntering through the grass – when it turned, it was an opposum (YES, I know – if you see one during the day light, they could possibly be rabid – this one just acted like it was confused or lost). My husband went out with a very long pole to scare it away (to the neighbor’s yard). That worked, for about 10 minutes and he/she was back – repeat ‘pole technique’ only to the other neighbor’s yard this time. It must have worked because it didn’t return (that I know of). It looked very healthy – all white with a black nose & ears. Oh well, never a dull moment, right?

Food-wise it’s been rather boring around here; for some reason the ‘guys’ don’t really feel like eating regular dinners any more. Made breaded pork steaks then enchiladas – it takes them a LONG time to finish off the leftovers! Tonight I’m making spaghetti & meatballs simply because I won’t be here for dinner time and, it makes great leftovers. OK – on to the recipes!


Berry Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 box strawberry cake mix (Duncan Hines)

1 egg

1/4 C. flour

1/2 C. oil

1/4 C. water

6 oz. chocolate chips

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

Mix all ingredients together in large

bowl. Drop by teaspoon onto cookie

sheets. Bake 10 minutes.

(recipe: Peg-Marys Recipe Exchange)


Spinach Fettuccine
1 (16 oz) box uncooked fettuccine
1 (9 oz) box frozen chopped spinach
1 T. butter
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 oz cream cheese, cut into cubes
3/4 C. chicken broth
3 T. flour
3/4 C. freshly grated Romano cheese
3/4 C. half & half
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
8 slices bacon, crisp-cooked & crumbled,
about 1 C.

Cook fettuccine in 5 qt. Dutch oven as
directed on pkg, omitting salt & oil.
Drain, reserving 1/2 C. cooking water.
Return fettuccine to pan, cover to keep
warm. Cook frozen spinach accordg to pkg
directions; squeeze dry. In non-stick
skillet, melt butter over medium-high
heat. Add garlic, cook & stir 30 seconds.
Add reserved cooking water & cream cheese,
stirring with whisk until smooth. In small
bowl, stir broth & flour with whisk until
smooth. Add flour mixture to skillet, stirring
with whisk until blended. Heat to boiling; cook
2 minutes, stirring constantly, until mixture
thickens. Remove from heat; add Romano cheese
stir until smooth. Add half & half, salt & 
pepper, stir in spinach. Add spinach mixture
to fettuccine in Dutch oven; toss to coat.
Divide mixture among 8 bowls; sprinkle evenly
with crumbled bacon. Makes 8 (1 C.) servings.

(recipe: Peg-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Sour Cream Chicken Rolls

4 boneless, skinless chicken
1 (16 oz) container sour cream
1 (6 oz) pkg. herb-flavored
stuffing mix, crushed
1 (6 oz) pkg. long-grain &
wild rice, cooked

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place chicken breasts between
2 pieces plastic wrap; pound to
flatten slightly. Brush sour
cream over chicken, coating
both sides well. Dip into stuffing
mix, coating both sides. (discard
any remaining stuffing mix). Roll
up chicken; secure each roll with
a wooden toothpick. Place in a 
9 x 9 baking pan sprayed with 
non-stick spray; cover with
aluminum foil. Bake 30 minutes,
remove foil; bake another 15
minutes or until chicken is
cooked through. Slice rolls
across into spirals & serve
over cooked rice. Makes 4

(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe

Texas Breakfast Casserole

(make ahead night before)

1 can refrigerated crescent rolls
16 oz. bulk breakfast pork
sausage*, cooked, drained &
8 oz. fresh mushrooms, sliced
12 oz (3 C.) Monterey Jack cheese,
grated (pepperjack works, too)
6 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1 can cream of onion soup,

Spray 9 x 13 baking pan with
nonstick spray. Line prepared
pan with the roll dough, sealing
perforations. Scatter sausage,
mushrooms & half of cheese over
dough. Mix eggs, salt & pepper 
with undiluted soup and pour
over casserole. Cover & 
refrigerate overnight. 

Preheat oven 350 degrees F. 
Remove from fridge 20 minutes
before baking. Bake 1 hour.
Makes 8 servings.

*Note: can also substitute
cooked, crumbled bacon or 
cubed ham for sausage.

(recipe: kaitsmimi-RDJ

Zesty Roasted Vegetables

1/2 lb. whole button or crimini
1/2 lb. baby carrots
1 onion, peeled, cut into 1/2
inch thick wedges
1 large yellow, green or red
pepper, cut into 8 strips
1/3 C. zesty Italian dressing
1/3 C. grated Parmesan cheese,

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
Line a 15x10x1 inch pan with foil;
spray with nonstick spray. Toss
vegetables with dressing and
1/4 C. cheese; spread into
prepared pan. Bake 28-30 minutes
or until vegetables are tender,
stirring after 15 minutes.
Top with remaining cheese.
Serves 8, 1/2 C. each

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Southern Fried Chicken
1 C. crushed corn flakes
2/3 C. flour
1 T. salt
1/4 tsp. ground red pepper
2 eggs
1/4 C. milk
2 lb. chicken wings or legs
1 1/2 C. oil

Heat oil in large skillet on 
medium-high heat until it
reaches 350 degrees F.
Mix corn flakes, flour &
seasonings in shallow dish.
Beat eggs & milk in separate
shallow dish. Dip chicken
in egg mixture, then in corn
flake mixture, turning over
to evenly coat both sides.
Add chicken to hot oil and
cook, in batches, 15 minutes
or until chicken is golden
brown and cooked through,
turning occasionally.
Serves 8.

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Layered Black Bean Dip
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese,
1 C. canned black beans,
1 (10 oz) can Ro*Tel diced
tomatoes & green chilies, drained
1 C. Mexican-style shredded

Spread cream cheese on bottom
of shallow plate; top with
remaining ingredients.
Makes 32- 2 T. each, servings.

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes
4 russet potatoes, sliced
into 1/4 inch slices
1 onion, sliced into rings
salt & pepper to taste
3 T. butter
3 T. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
2 C. milk
1 1/2 C. shredded Cheddar

Preheat oven 400 degrees F. 
Butter a 1 quart casserole
dish. Layer 1/2 of potatoes into
bottom of dish; top with onion
slices then add remaining
potatoes. Season with salt &
pepper. In medium-sized
sauce pan, melt butter over
medium heat; mix in flour & salt.
Stir constantly with whisk for
one minute. Stir in milk; cook
until mixture has thickened.
Stir in cheese all at once,
continue stirring until 
melted, about 30-60 seconds.
Pour cheese over potatoes;
cover dish & bake 1 1/2 hours.

(recipe: Mary Free-Marys 
Recipe Exchange)
Easy Carrot Cake
1 (18 oz) box yellow cake mix
1 C. grated carrots
1/2 C. chopped pecans
1/2 C. raisins

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Prepare yellow cake according
to pkg. directions. Stir in
grated carrots, pecans & raisins.
Pour into large greased loaf
pan. Bake 50-60 minutes. Let 
cool & frost with cream cheese
(recipe: newspaper flyer)
Got a chance to see a 'classic' on Lifetime channel;
"Pride & Prejudice" (with Donald Sutherlund). That's
one of those 'need to see every few years' movies. 
Went to the local Parks & Recreation sale today-
let's just say 'somebody goofed'. For the past
few years they've had a sort of 'rummage/plant/
baked goods' sale, but this year they decided
to just make it plant/baked goods and very
few of those.I had a nice chat with one of 
the women there
who said she's hoping they go back to the old
method next year, as they haven't made very 
much  money this time (I can see why). Oh well-
not much else to mention except I finished the
blue scarf but will need to block it before
photo'ing it (it's curling up right now); up
to 58 chemo caps now and about 4 more inches
left to do on the embroidery (for the wreath
part, then comes the script; that should
take a good while as it's very tiny stitches).
Anyway, hope you're enjoying your day! Lots
 of pretty flowers popping up - especially
iris's (love them!)


Published in: on May 18, 2012 at 1:15 pm  Leave a Comment  

Quiet Day – No Complaints! (re-posting 5/17 – shows it was not published)

Here it is, almost 12:30 in the afternoon and the house is q-u-i-e-t! Husband is ‘watching the insides of his eyelids’ in the other room, middle son is off to work, youngest is hanging out with friends = nice & quiet, just the way I like it! So far today I’ve read about 3 chapters in another murder/mystery book, knit about 8 rows on another chemo cap, did my daily devotions – that’s about it (AND, I got up at 7:45 a.m.) – pretty lazy day, eh? No real plans for the day, have some organizing to do with my knit group paperwork, that’s about ‘it’.


Strawberry Cake w/Cream Cheese


1 box plain white cake mix

1 pkg. strawberry Jello

1 C. mashed strawberries with juice

1 C. vegetable oil

1/2 C. milk

4 large eggs

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

Combine all ingredients in large

bowl; beat on low speed 1 minute.

Strawberries should be well-

blended. Divide batter among 3

9-inch cake pans. Bake 28-30

minutes, until lightly browned.

Remove from oven, allow to cool

in pans on racks 10 minutes.

Remove from pans & cool, on racks

30 minutes


1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese,


1 stick butter, softened

3 1/2 C. powdered sugar

3/4 C. mashed strawberries,


Combine cream cheese & butter;

mix on low speed 1 minute. Add

sugar & fruit; blend on low until

sugar is incorporated. Frost

layers, top & sides of cooled cake.

(recipe: Linda N-Marys Recipe



French Apple-Raisin Breakfast
Sandwiches (French Toast

2 large eggs
1/2 C. milk
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
4 slices raisin bread
1/2 C. apple pie filling
1 T. butter
(powdered sugar - optional)

In a large baking dish, whisk
eggs, milk & cinnamon; set aside.
Make 2 sandwiches with the bread
and apple pie filling. Place
sandwiches into egg mixture;
let soak until egg mixture is 
completely absorbed into bread,
turning sandwiches once.(takes
about 3 minutes.) On a griddle
over medium-high heat, melt 1
T. butter. Cook sandwiches on 
griddle until brown & heated
through, about 4 minutes per
side. Cut each sandwich in half.
Transfer to plates, serve with
additional butter and top with
powdered sugar, if desired.
Serves 2-4.

(recipe: Estelle-justapinch.com)
Cheesy Chicken & Potatoes

1 large green pepper, chopped
1 lb. red potatoes (about 3)
very thinly sliced
1 tsp. paprika
8 small bone-in chicken thighs,
skin removed
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of 
chicken soup
1/4 lb. (4 oz) Velveeta
cheese, cut into 1/2 in. cubes
1 T. worcestershire sauce
1/4 C. chopped parsley

Spray crockpot with nonstick
cooking spray. Place peppers in
crock; top with potatoes. Sprinkle
paprika over chicken. Place 4 thighs
in cooker, cover with soup & 
remaining thighs; cover. Cook on
Low 6-8 hours or High 3-4 hours.
Use slotted spoon to transfer
chicken & vegs to platter; cover
to keep warm. Set crock on High;
add Velveeta & Wors. sauce to 
reserved liquid in crockpot;
stir. Cover with lid; cook 5 
minutes. Stir until Velveeta
is completely melted & sauce
is well blended. Spoon sauce
over chicken & vegetables;
top with parsley.
Serves 4.
(recipe: Kraft foods)
Bean Dip

1 (15 oz) can chili with beans
2 (8 oz,ea) pkgs cream cheese,
2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 lb. bacon, cooked, drained &
4 whole green onions, chopped
tortilla chips, for dipping

Preheat oven 350 Degrees F.
Mix together chili, cream cheese,
Cheddar cheese, bacon & chopped
onions in a large bowl. Spread
mixture onto a glass pie plate;
bake 20 minutes or until hot
& bubbly. Serve with chips.
(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe
Wet Burritos

2 lb. ground beef
2 T. minced garlic
1/2 onion, diced
salt & pepper, to taste
10 or 12 inch flour tortillas
1 can chili NO beans
1 can enchilada sauce
4 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 can refried beans

Brown ground beef with garlic;
drain & season with salt & pepper.
Add onion & cook over medium heat
until onion is tender. Add refried
beans; mix well and heat through.
Keep warm.
Combine chili & enchilada sauce in
saucepan; mix & heat over medium
heat. Heat tortillas in microwave
10 seconds. Spoon large amount of
meat onto bottom third of tortilla.
Sprinkle with a little cheese & roll
edge over meat, folding in sides.
Continue to roll; place on a plate,
seam-side down. Spoon sauce over top 
& top with lots of cheese. Place in
microwave 1-  1 1/2 minutes until 
cheese melts. Serve with tortilla
chips, diced onion, sour cream,
shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes,
salsa, etc.
(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe 
Citrus Salad w/Bacon &
Red Onion

4 C. packed mixed salad greens
4 C. packed baby spinach leaves
1 large navel orange, thinly 
sliced & halved*
1/3 C. dried cranberries
1/3 C. thin red onion rings
3 slices bacon, cooked & 
1/3 C. light balsamic vinaigrette

Combine all ingredients except
dressing; add dressing before
serving; toss to coat.
Serves 6
* Can substitute 1 (11 oz)
can mandarin oranges, drained
for navel orange
(recipe: Kraft foods)
Zesty Chicken Tortilla Bake

1/2 C. Miracle Whip dressing
1/2 C. flour
3 C. milk
1 (8 oz) pkg. shredded Cheddar
cheese, divided
1 1/2 lb. boneless, skinless
chicken breasts, cooked & cut
into bite-sized pieces
1/2 C. thick & chunky salsa
1/2 C. chopped fresh parsley
16 (6 in.) flour tortillas

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Whisk dressing & flour in medium
saucepan until well blended.
Gradually stir in milk; bring to 
boil on medium heat, stirring
constantly. Cook & stir until
thickened. Add 1 C. cheese; 
cook until melted, stirring
constantly. Reserve 1 C. sauce.
Stir chicken, salsa & parsley
into remaining sauce; spoon
1/3 C. down center of each 
tortilla & roll up. Place
8 roll-ups, seam-side down,
in each of two 9 x 13 pans
sprayed with nonstick cooking
spray. Top with reserved sauce
& remaining cheese. Bake
25 minutes or until heated
through. Serves 8
(Kraft foods)

Our weather has been grey & wet, but
that's OK - we need the rain to help
all the flowers & trees grow! Hope
you have a GREAT day - relax a little, 
it IS Saturday!


Published in: on May 18, 2012 at 12:24 pm  Leave a Comment  

Prom Night!

Tonight is Prom Night for our youngest son; he and his friends went there via a ‘party bus’ – here’s a photo of the entire ‘bus’ group:

Not sure just how many kids are attending prom. Here is our son, in a friend’s borrowed ‘fancy coat’, and with his date:


They were going to a country club park for more pictures, then on to the prom at a very nice establishment. I’m guessing we won’t see him until the wee hours. Just wanted to share the photos!


Pammie (aka: “Proud Mama”)

Published in: on May 11, 2012 at 5:10 pm  Leave a Comment