Falling Behind


Just happened to notice that I haven’t written a blog post in awhile now – sorry, no particular reason. Finished reading an interesting book – “Time Lottery” by Nancy Moser – a rather gripping story about three people who were given the chance to go back in time for a week (any time they chose, as long as it was during their lifetime) and possibly change things. It was so interesting that I checked the local library to see if there were any more books by her and was pleasantly surprised to see she wrote a sequel: “Second Time Around” – I have it on Hold. I’ve knit a few more baby hats, attended my special needs group – nothing spectacular going. Sometimes ‘nothing exciting’ can be a GOOD thing – it means that nothing BAD or earth-shattering has happened. One thing that’s different: I discovered “The Oregon Trail” game – the boys used to have it many years ago, but now it’s out for laptops. I must say – it’s definitely a ‘time User-upper’! (but fun)

How are your Gas Prices lately? I’ve noticed ours slowly creeping up: first they were $3.69 a gallon for almost a week, and now today they’re up to $3.79/9 – I’m guessing it’s for the upcoming holiday weekend. Of course! RAISE the prices when people will be traveling the most! What a GREAT idea! (NOT!!!)

I also have a good supply of ‘last of the summer’ recipes for you:


Roasted Red Potatoes for a Crowd

17 lb. red skin potatoes*, unpeeled, cut into
irregular 2 inch chunks (or left whole, if small)
1 lb. 8 oz. jar olive oil
2 oz. salt
1 T. black pepper
1 oz. garlic, minced (optional)

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Place potatoes in large bowl; pour olive oil
over potatoes & stir to coat. Drain any excess
oil from potatoes. Sprinkle salt, pepper & garlic
over potatoes; stir to coat. Spread potatoes
in a single layer on oiled baking sheets. Roast
until tender & golden brown, 30-35 minutes.
Makes 50 servings.

*You can also use whole new potatoes.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Peaches ‘N Cream Pie

48 ‘Nilla wafers, finely crushed (about
1 1/2 C.)
1/3 C. butter, melted
3/4 C. boiling water
1 (3 oz) pkg. orange Jello
2 C. ice cubes*
1 1/2 C.  Cool Whip, thawed
2 fresh peaches, peeled & chopped

Mix wafer crumbs & butter; press onto
bottom & up sides of a 9 inch pie plate.
In medium bowl, add boiling water to
jello ; stir 2 minutes until completely
dissolved. Add ice cubes; stir until jello
is slightly thickened. Remove any
unmelted ice. Add Cool Whip; stir until
blended; gently stir in peaches. Refrigerate
15 minutes or until jello mixture is thick
enough to  mound; spoon into crust.
Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm.

*For best results, do NOT substitute
cold water for ice cubes

Substitute: You can substitute 1 C. coarsely
chopped fresh strawberries & strawberry
jello OR 1 (11 oz) drained can of mandarin oranges
and orange jello

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Bacon-Wrapped Hot Dog Bites

9 slices bacon, cut in halt
6 hot dogs, cut into thirds
1/3 C. packed brown sugar
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Mix sugar & pepper together in
shallow dish. Wrap 1 bacon piece
around each hot dog piece; roll in
sugar/pepper mixture to evenly coat.
Place, seam-side down, in foil-lined
rimmed baking sheet. Bake 22-24
minutes or until bacon is crisp and
golden brown, turning after 12
minutes. Makes 18 servings.

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Midwestern Potato Salad

2 lb. whole tiny new potatoes or 6
medium red potatoes
1 C. thinly sliced celery
3/4 C. mayonnaise or salad dressing
1/2 C. plain yogurt
1/3 C. chopped onion
2-3 T. coarse-grain brown (Dijon-style)
1 T. snipped fresh dill or 1/2 tsp. dried
2 tsp. lemon juice or vinegar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 C. fresh* or frozen whole kernel corn,
cooked & cooled

Quarter new potatoes or cube red ones.
In large covered saucepan, cook potatoes
in boiling salted water 12-15 minutes or
until tender; drain & cool. Peel, if desired.
In large bowl, combine celery, mayonnaise,
yogurt, onion, mustard, dill, lemon juice
(or vinegar), salt & pepper. Add potatoes &
corn; toss gently to mix. Cover & chill 3-24
hours. Makes 10-12 side-dish servings.

*To cook fresh corn, remove husks & silks.
Rinse, then cut kernels from cob. Cook,
covered, in small amount of boiling water
4 minutes; drain.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Zucchini, Black Bean & Rice Skillet

1 T. cooking oil
1 1/2 C. zucchini/ quartered, & sliced lengthwise
1/2 C. diced green pepper
1 (15 oz. ) can black beans, rinsed & drained
1 (14.5 oz) can Fire-roasted Diced tomatoes
with garlic (Hunts), undrained
3/4 C. water
1 C. instant white rice, uncooked
1/2 C. shredded Cheddar & Monterey Jack
cheese blend

Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add
zucchini & bell pepper; cook 5 minutes, stirring
occasionally. Add beans, tomatoes & water; increase
heat & bring to boil. Add rice; stir well. Cover &
remove from heat. Let stand 7 minutes or until
liquid is absorbed. Sprinkle with cheese before
serving. Serves 4

(recipe: readyseteat.com)

Dijon Chicken Wings

vegetable oil (for brushing)
4 lb. chicken wings, split at the joints, tips
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
3/4 C. Dijon mustard
1/2 C. honey
3 T. mustard powder
1/2 tsp. finely grated garlic

Position racks in upper & lower thirds of oven;
preheat to 450 degrees F. Brush 2 large baking
dishes with vegetable oil. Pat wings dry; sprinkle
with 2 tsp. salt & 1/2 tsp. pepper. Spread in the
dishes & bake, rotating halfway through, until
golden, 40-45 minutes.

Mix Dijon mustard, honey, mustard powder &
garlic in a bowl. Remove wings from oven & toss
with mustard mixture, then continue baking
until glazed, 3-5 more minutes. Serves 6-8

(recipe: Food Network)


1 1/2 lb. vine-ripened tomatoes, peeled/seeded& chopped
tomato juice
1 C. cucumber, peeled/seeded & chopped
1/2 C. chopped red bell pepper
1/2 C. chopped red onion
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded & minced
1 medium garlic clove, minced
1/4 C. olive oil
1 lime, juiced
2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
2 T. fresh basil leaves, chopped fine

Fill a 6 Qt. pot halfway full of water, set over high
heat; bring to boil. Make an X with a paring knife
on the bottom of the tomatoes. Drop tomatoes into boiling water for 15 seconds; remove & transfer to
an ice bath. Allow to cool until able to handle,
approx. 1 minute. Remove tomatoes & pat dry. Peel, core & seed tomatoes. When seeding tomatoes, place seeds & pulp into a fine mesh strainer set over bowl in order to catch the juice. Press as much of the juice through as possible, then add enough bottled tomato juice to bring the total to 1 Cup. Place tomatoes & juice in large mixing bowl. Add cucumber, bell pepper, red onion, jalapeno, garlic, olive oil, lime juice, balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, cumin, salt & pepper; stir to combine. Transfer 1 1/2 C. of mixture to a blender & puree 15-20 seconds on high. Return pureed mixture to bowl & stir to combine. Cover & chill for 2 hours/up to overnight.Serve with chopped basil on top. Makes 4 servings.

(recipe: Alton Brown, Food Network)

Strawberry Spinach Salad

2 T. sesame seeds
1 T. poppy seeds
1/2 C. white sugar
1/2 C. olive oil
1/4 C. white vinegar
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 T. minced onion
10 oz. fresh spinach, rinsed, dried &
torn into bite-sized pieces
1 Quart strawberries, cleaned, hulled &
1/4 C. almonds, blanched & slivered

In medium bowl, whisk together sesame &
poppy seeds, sugar, olive oil, vinegar, paprika,
Worcestershire sauce & onion. Cover & chill
1 hour. In large bowl, combine spinach, straw-
berries & almonds. Pour dressing over salad &
toss. Refrigerate 10-15 minutes before serving.
Makes 4 servings.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)


12 large navel oranges
2 1/2 C. freshly grated fresh coconut
(1 medium coconut)
3 T. sugar
31/4 tsp. salt

Using a sharp knife, peel oranges, removing
all bitter white pith. Working over a bowl,
cut in between the membranes to release
the sections. Squeeze the juice from the
membranes over the oranges in the bowl.
2-4 hours before serving, stir in coconut, sugar
& salt.

(recipe: Marys Recipe Exchange)


1-1/2 lb. bacon, cooked, drained,

2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
2 (8-oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sour cream
1/4 C. mayonnaise
1 C. Cheddar cheese (shredded)
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 T. mustard
2 C. chopped seeded tomatoes
1-1/2 C. shredded Iceberg lettuce
pepper & salt to taste

Toasted bread rounds, crackers, or pita chips.

Preheat oven to 350
Spray a 2-quart baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray. Set aside 3/4 cup crumbled bacon.
In a large bowl, combine remaining bacon, cream
cheese, shredded cheeses, sour cream, mayonnaise,
Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and
mustard. Spoon  mixture into prepared baking dish.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
Sprinkle chopped tomatoes, remaining 3/4 cup
crumbled bacon and lettuce over hot dip. Serve
immediately with toasted bread rounds,
crackers, or pita chips.

(recipe: Facebook)

Sweet & Salty Brownies

1 (4 oz) pkg. unsweetened chocolate
3/4 C. butter or margarine
3 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 C. sugar
4 eggs
1 C. flour
1 C. coarsely chopped dry roasted
peanuts, divided
25 caramel candies
2 T. milk

Heat oven 350 degrees F.
Microwave chocolate & butter in large
microwaveable bowl on High 2 minutes
or until butter is melted. Stir until chocolate
is completely melted. Stir in pepper; add sugar,
mix well. Blend in eggs; add flour & mix well.
Stir in 1/2 C. nuts. Spread half the batter into
9 X 13 baking pan sprayed with nonstick spray.
Microwave caramels & milk in microwaveable
bowl on High 2 1/2 minutes, stirring after 1 minute. Stir until caramels are completely melted & mixture is well blended; spread over brownie batter in pan. Cover with remaining brownie batter. (Some caramel sauce may peek through.) Sprinkle with remaining
nuts. Bake 25-30 minutes or until top is firm to the
touch. Cool. Makes 32 servings.

NOTE: IT is important to add ground red pepper (cayenne)
right after you melt the chocolate. This ensures that the
pepper is evenly distributed into the brownie batter.

(recipe: Kraft foods)

So – do you have plans to ‘get away’ one last time for the summer? We’ve never been ‘traveling’ people, so it looks like we’ll just stay home and enjoy spare ribs cooked int he crock pot (makes them ‘fall-off-the-bone’ tender!). Youngest son is ‘celebrating’ his One Year work anniversary at Meijers today; I’m glad to see he’s continuing with this job.

Enjoy your day;



(Our weather has been somewhat typical of this time of year – warm & muggy. It rained for a few days, on & off, and now it’s sitting at 84 and overcast.)


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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. We will be at home also so it is like any other day! Enjoy your ribs and your day!

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