Of Birthdays and Beautiful Days

Yesterday was our youngest son’s 18th Birthday – sure seemed to go by quickly and now he’s OFFICIALLY an adult (still a kid to me). In the photo you see the infamous Dairy Queen Reese’sPeanut Butter Cup ice cream cake (yummy stuff!).  (Not sure why he didn’t want a full-on photo, but that’s the best I could get at the time). Yes, his lip is pierced, yes he now has a beard – sort of – (the kind that goes from your ears, around the edge of your jaw – not sure just what that’s called). For his birthday we gave him Segment 1 Driver’s Ed lessons and a new cell phone – I’m sure it wasn’t exactly what he might have been expecting, but I’ve always been one for practical presents for our sons – he’s never had driving lessons and his old cell is cutting in & out, so you see there’s a need for both. I also made his (and his dad’s) favorite dinner: Meat & Potato Pie & tossed salad – everyone was happy with that.

Today is a very gorgeous Tuesday – lots of sun, about 87 degrees, no clouds – the kind of day where (when I was younger) I would have spent it floating on an inflatable raft at our beach – nice, nice day for the beach. (Because of the cancer drug I’m on, I have to avoid the sun – besides: being fair skinned, red-headed & covered in freckles – I burn really easy).

Yesterday I visited the library as I had four books on hold. Ended up reading them all – one I’d already read but hadn’t recognized the title (ever done that?), another was a really light read, one I read cover-to-cover: light weight murder mystery and the last one I made it through 2 chapters before saying to myself : this writer can’t write a decent sentence! It’s like slogging through really thick mud – with no content! I go on-line with the library, type in a category then peruse the books there. If one sounds interesting, I put it on “hold” – that’s how I got the four I checked out. Oh well, that filled my need for a good read for a few weeks!

This is one of those rather ‘unscripted’ weeks for me: tonight would normally be my knit night, but it’s the ‘off’ week, so I’m free. Tomorrow would normally be my special needs group night but we had to cancel as the church we meet at is getting new carpeting installed in the hallway right outside our room – another ‘free’ night! Youngest son got a call today for a job interview tomorrow at Meijer – YAY! That’s REALLY close to our house – I like that, as I’m usually the one driving him. Not sure what their pay scale is or the job they’re interviewing him for – but we’ll see. He put in for about 4 different jobs there; I’m happy they’re calling him as he nas NO job experience (think that might have been why he wasn’t chosen for the other two places he did interviews at). Thursday night he has another interview at Family Video – another really close place; here’s hoping that one of them hires him – everyone’s got to start SOMEWHERE, right?

Lots more summery-sounding recipes! We’re going to a Sunday School picnic soon and I think I’ve decided to bring: Gordon Food’s Red Potato Salad and a peach cobbler. Why, you ask, would I bring commercially made potato salad? Simply because (1) I know it tastes really good and (2) it’s easy! I’ll probably (as my Mom used to say) ‘doctor it up’ a bit with a little more Miracle Whip, some chopped green onions and a little garlic powder then put it in a big bowl. As for the peach cobbler – that just seems to be what I’m craving lately! (LOVE that stuff, but never make it). They are going to be having homemade ice cream there, also, so I figured peach cobbler should go really great with that.


 Banana “Mess” Cake

1 box yellow cake mix

1/2 C. buttermilk*

3/4 C. oil

4 eggs

1 tsp. baking soda

1 C. coconut

3 bananas, mashed

1 tsp. vanilla

1 C. chopped pecans

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.

Mix all ingredients together

well; pour into three 9 inch

cake pans that have been greased

& floured. Bake until middle of

one layer springs back to the

touch (check cake mix box for

approx. time). Frost with

icing when cake has cooled.


1 box powdered sugar, sifted

1 (3 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened

1 stick softened butter

Mix ingredients together well.

Add enough milk to make spread-

able consistency.

* To make buttermilk:

Pour 1/2 T. white vinegar or

lemon juice in 1 cup measuring

cup, then add regular milk until

liquid reaches 1/2 C. mark.

Stir and let sit 5 minutes then

use in recipe.

(recipe: Sandy-Marys REcipe



Sauteed Squash Medley

1 medium zucchini, cut in
half lengthwise, sliced
1 medium yellow summer
squash, cut in half length-
wise, sliced
1/4 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper
2 T. margarine
Spray large skillet with cooking
spray; heat over medium-high
heat. Add zucchini, yellow
squash, Italian seasoning, 
salt & pepper - cook 5 minutes
or until lightly browned, 
stirring occasionally. Remove
from heat, stir in margarine.
Serves 4 (1/2 C. each)

Option: can add 1/2 C. chopped
onion before cooking.

(recipe: readyseteat)
Sweet, Buttery Baklava

1 package phylo dough
1 lb. chopped walnuts or pistachios
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 C. melted butter
1 C. water
1 C. sugar
1/2 C. honey
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Butter bottom & sides of 9 x 13
baking dish. Mix chopped nuts with
cinnamon; set aside. Unroll phyllo
dough (cover unused dough with
dampened cloth to keep from drying
out as you work). Place one sheet
dough in pan, thoroughly brush with
butter; repeat until you have used 
8 sheets, layered. Sprinkle 2-3
T. nut mixture on top; top with
two sheets phyllo dough, butter, nuts,
layering as you go. The top layer 
should be about 6-8 sheets deep.
Don't forget to butter the top 
layer. Using a sharp knife, cut
into diamond or square shapes all the
way to the bottom of pan. You can
cut into 4 long rows, then make
the diagonal cuts. Bake about
50 minutes until baklava is
golden & crisp. Prepare sauce
while baklava is baking:


Boil sugar & water until sugar
is melted. Add honey & lemon
juice; simmer about 20 minutes.
Remove baklava from oven and pour
syrup over as evenly as possible;
let cool. 

(recipe: Julie-justapinch.com)

Coca Cola BBQ’d Chicken

4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
(can put them in frozen)
1 lemon, quartered
1 onion, quartered
1 (20 oz) bottle BBQ sauce of your choice
1 can Coca Cola

Peel onion, cut into quarters. Cut lemon into
quarters. Place chicken breasts in crockpot;
put onion & lemon quarters on top. Pour
entire bottle of BBQ sauce and entire
bottle of Coca Cola over all. Cover & cook
on Low 6=8 hours, or High 3-4 hours.

(recipe: 6 Sisters Stuff – website)

Brats & Potatoes



6 bratwurst links
1 medium onion, chopped
6 medium Idaho potatoes
3 T. cooking oil

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Remove Bratwurst filling from
casings; brown in a pan with
cooking oil. As meat is browning,
add chopped onion & season to
taste. Cut potatoes into bite-
sized pieces; add to meat
mixture. Cook on high until
the outside of potatoes are
lightly browned. Place potato/
meat mixture on a baking sheet;
bake 30 minutes. When potatoes
are tender, turn on broiler &
brown about 5-8 minutes.
Serves 4-6

(recipe: Michelle – justapinch.com)

Roasted Red Pepper Dip



2 red sweet peppers or one 7 oz. jar

roasted red sweet peppers, drained

1 fresh red chili pepper or 1-2 tsp.

bottled chopped red jalapeno pepper
8 oz. cream cheese, softened & cut up

2 T. olive oil

1 T. honey

1 clove garlic, quartered

2 T. snipped fresh rosemary, basil or

oregano (OR 1 tsp. dried & crushed)
Vegetables for dipping: small carrots,

broccoli florets, zucchini slices and/

or tortilla chips

Roast fresh sweet peppers & fresh

chili pepper according to directions



To roast peppers:

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.

Cut peppers in half lengthwise; remove

stems, seeds & membranes. Place,

cut sides down, on large foil-lined

baking sheet. Bake 15-20 minutes

or until skins are blistered & bubbly.
fold up foil on sheet around peppers to

form a packet, sealing edges. Let stand

20 minutes to loosen skins. Peel

peppers; cut into pieces.

(NOTE: when working with chili

pepper – cover your hands with

plastic bags so that the oils in

the pepper don’t burn your skin).


In a food processor bowl or blender,

combine roasted sweet peppers, roasted or

bottled chili pepper, cream cheese, olive

oil, honey & garlic. Cover & process

until smooth. Add herb of your choice;

pulse until combined. Transfer to a

serving bowl. Serve immediately or
cover & refrigerate up to 2 days.
Makes 1 1/2 C.

(NOTE: If desired, roast peppers ahead,

then cover & refrigerate up to 24 hours)

(recipe: Rhonda G – Marys Recipe

“Wallie” Salad


2 C. romaine lettuce, chopped
1 C. green cabbage, shredded
2 chicken breasts, cooked & diced
1/2 C. dried cherries
1 apple, diced
1/2 C. walnuts, chopped
1 C. white cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 C. balsamic vinaigrette

Toss together all ingredients in a large
bowl. Refrigerate. Serves 4.

(recipe: My magazine)

Chocolate Banana Bread



1/2 C. butter or margarine, softened
1 C. sugar
2 eggs

1 C. mashed bananas

(about 2 medium)
1/4 C. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 C. flour
1/4 C. baking cocoa
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/2 C. chopped nuts, optional

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large mixing bowl, cream butter &
sugar. Add eggs, bananas, milk & vanilla.

Combine flour, cocoa, baking
soda & salt; add to banana mixture;
mix until just combined. Fold in nuts
if desired. Transfer to a greased 9 x 5 x
3 inch loaf pan. Bake 60-65 minutes or
until a wooden toothpick inserted into
center of loaf comes out clean. Cool
10 minutes before removing from pan.
Makes 1 loaf.

(recipe: Moms2Moms site)

Homemade Refrigerator Pickles

(Recipe #1 – #2 will follow in a

few days)



4 C. water
1 T. fresh garlic, minced
2 T. Kosher salt
4 tsp. pickling spice
2 C. white vinegar
6 cucumbers

Pour water & garlic into large pot,
bring to rolling boil for 5  minutes.
Add salt & vinegar, return to boil
until salt is dissolved. Wash 2
quart jars, place 2 tsp. pickling
spice into each jar. Add cucumbers,
packing them in tightly. Pour hot
brine over vegetables. Let jars
cool to room temperature before
putting lid on. Refrigerate until

(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe

Peach Crisp for Two

1 (15 oz) can sliced peaches in juice,
drained, chopped
1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 C. granola without fruit
1 T. firmly packed light brown sugar
1 T. margarine, melted
Cool Whip

Spray insides of 2 medium micro-
waveable coffee mugs with nonstick
spray; set aside. Combine peaches &
cinnamon in small bowl, divide
evenly between mugs. In same bowl,
stir together granola, brown sugar &
margarine; spoon evenly over peaches
in mugs. Microwave mugs on High 4-5
minutes or until hot & bubbly. Top
each with Cool Whip before serving.
Serves 2

(recipe: readyseteat)


That about does it for today’s blog;

hope you’re having a good day. This is

the kind of day I will look back on when

the snows are flying and it’s about 15

degrees outside – remembering the

warm, sunny days – looking outside

to see if I can spot one of two baby

bunnies who frequent our yard, or the

chipmunk who’s here every summer.

(Yes, I’m sure it’s a different one each

year, but I like to think it’s the SAME

one!)  Looking forward to my little

‘treat’ later on tonight of a thin slice

of the birthday ice cream cake – so






Published in: on August 7, 2012 at 2:34 pm  Comments (4)  
Tags: , , , , ,

The URI to TrackBack this entry is: https://grammiepammie.wordpress.com/2012/08/07/of-birthdays-and-beautiful-days/trackback/

RSS feed for comments on this post.

4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Best wishes to your birthday boy, that cake looks good. Have had yet another dull and damp day here in UK, when are we going to get our summer? Off to bed soon. Hope to catch up tomorrow. Hugs, C xx

  2. Hey Pam, First of all I’d like to send a Happy Birthday to your son, I know that 18th birthday is so difficult for us and a milestone for them….I had twins so they both turned 18 on the same day, I had a double whammy!!! I am, or rather was, a Human Resources professional for over 30 years. Now that your son is 18 he can go to a staffing service like Manpower, Adecco, Kelly Services, etc and they will put him to work without experience. It’s a great way for him to get a start and get his foot in the door somewhere. A lot of places, not all, will hire temporary workers after 90 days. It may worth a try. Good luck!

  3. A big Happy Birthday to the youngest. Having a couple of nights off is good for anyone and you especially. Enjoy

  4. Interesting using cola!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: