Great Day!


I had a little grocery shopping to get done today – went to my local store, then remembered that I had one more ‘free’ large pepperoni pizza slip in my purse. (This store ‘was’ giving away a slip for a ‘free’ pizza ( you have to pay the 30 cents tax) if you bought over $100.00 in groceries. Over the past few months I’ve used up two of them and today was #3. Got done with my shopping and thinking about remembering to pick up the pizza at the Deli counter when my cashier said: “Here you go!” and handed me a bunch of fresh flowers! I was amazed! I totally forgot to ask what that was about – just asked her (politely as I could) if I could exchange the screaming pink carnations for a bunch of light lavender Freesia – she said yes. Coming home thinking: “Free pizza AND free flowers – what a day!” I’m still not sure if the flowers were for their Weds. “Seniors Discounts” day or what BUT right now I don’t care – just enjoying looking at the beautiful flowers!

Next up (in the next 5 minutes) is a trip to my OB/GYN to get a Bone Density Scan done. This is an ‘interesting’ event: my OB/GYN says I don’t need one until 2020 BUT my main cancer doctor wants one done NOW. I’ve kind of ‘put-off’ the cancer doctor for a year, knowing what OB/GYN said, but now it’s time. I called OB office and presented my predicament: the scan has to be done in THEIR office so that they can compare my previous scan to the new one (cancer doctor has a different type/kind of machine which would make it difficult to compare apples to apples – get it? Anyway – I let the two doctors ‘duke it out’ – OB’s office was objecting so I told them to call the cancer doctor and argue with HIM! About two weeks went by and finally I get a call from OB office saying they’re scheduling the test. Apparently the OB would NOT write the order to authorize the test so the cancer doctor DID. Now . . . OB’s office said they’re hoping that Medicare & my Blue Cross will cover the cost ($175.00) but they’re not sure BECAUSE of the way the cancer doctor wrote the order – don’t get it but I’ll let ya know more later – gotta get going NOW!

Bone SCAN Done! A quick 15 minutes, really nice tech lady – enjoyable trip. Today really surprised me – when I walked outside to my car it was 65 degrees out! Warm, sunny & breezy – carried my coat, rolled down the car windows and ENJOYED!

ADDENDUM: It’s now Thursday – it got a little busy/crazy when I got home and never got the time to finish this post so am doing that now, 4:35 p.m. THURSDAY! (Halloween day). We never get any trick-or-treaters here, so I’m not worried. It’s now POURING rain, grey & gloomy – feel sorry for the little kids who will be going out in this!  Husband & I went to take my car in for routine check up and went out to the only place we knew of ‘near’ the car dealership: Culver’s. Neither of us had been to a Culver’s before so we were able to take our time – we were the first customers, so the employees took their time chatting as well. We both tried the “Butterburgers” (Culvers is famous for them): I had the original, husband had a double – we both said they were good (for me, a bit greasy). Can’t say as I was impressed by them – better than McD’s, but I still think the Whopper is the best (except for a bar burger and it’s been a ton of years since that happened – there aren’t any bars around here famous for their burger – besides, I don’t go to bars, anyway!) Managed to get quite a few rows crocheted on the baby blanket when we returned to the dealership – all totaled, it was 2 hr 15 minutes for our car.


Pumpkin Pie Dip

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
1 small box instant vanilla pudding
1 (16 oz) container Cool Whip, thawed
1 T. vanilla
1 T. pumpkin pie spice
1 T. cinnamon

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients.
Stir until well blended. Cover & refrigerate
at least 1 hour before serving. Serves 24

(recipe: Facebook)

Roasted Sweet Potatoes

3 sweet potatoes, peeled & cut into
bite-sized cubes
2 tsp. olive oil
1 T. butter
1 T. brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
pinch ground ginger
sea salt, to taste

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Coat a small baking dish with
nonstick spray. Place potatoes in
baking dish; melt butter in microwave
& pour over potatoes along with olive
oil, brown sugar, spices & salt. Add more
sugar or cinnamon, if desired; toss to
coat evenly. Bake 60 minutes, stirring
once or twice during roasting.

(recipe: Facebook)

Bacon-wrapped Smokie Sausages
(party appetizers)

1 lb. bacon, cut into thirds
1 lb. Lil’ Smokies (small sausages
1 stick butter, melted
2 C. brown sugar

Preheat oven 375 degrees
Wrap each smokie with one bacon
strip. Place wrapped smokies in single
layer in 9 X 13 baking dish. Mix melted
butter & 1 C. brown sugar together, mix well
then pour on smokies & bacon. Sprinkle
remaining 1 C. brown sugar evenly over
smokies & bake 15-20 minutes, then turn
heat up to 400 degrees & bake 5 minutes
longer, until bacon becomes crisp.

(recipe: Facebook)


1 (18oz) can pumpkin (or fresh equivalent)
1 box yellow cake mix (2 layer size)
1 C. sugar
1/2 C. melted margarine or butter
1 (13oz) can evaporated milk
(not sweetened condensed)
3/4 C. chopped pecans or walnuts
3 eggs
3 tsp. cinnamon

Thawed Cool Whip or
Whipped Cream for topping

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Beat eggs and milk together; add pumpkin,
sugar and cinnamon. Mix until well blended.
Pour into a 9×13 greased pan. Sprinkle dry cake
mix over mixture. Drizzle with melted margarine.
Sprinkle with chopped nuts. Bake 50-60 min or
until done. Serve (warm or cold) with Cool Whip or
whipped cream.

(recipe: Facebook)

Spiced Pumpkin-Raisin Cookies

1 C. flour
2/3 C. old-fashioned oats
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
3/4 C. sugar, plus more for
1/2 C. canned pumpkin puree
1/3 C. vegetable oil
1 T. maple syrup
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. raisins

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Position oven rack in center of oven.
Line 2 heavy, large baking sheets with
parchment paper. In medium bowl, combine
flour, oats, cinnamon, baking soda, salt &
allspice; blend well. In large bowl combine
sugar, pumpkin puree, oil, syrup & vanilla;
whisk to blend. Using rubber spatula, gradually
stir dry ingredients into pumpkin mixture; stir
in raisins. Drop 1 generous tablespoon of batter
onto prepared baking sheet, spacing mounds
about 1 inch apart. Using moistened fingertips,
flatten each to a 2-inch diameter round; sprinkle
each cookie with a bit of sugar. Bake until brown
and a bit firm to the touch: 17-20 minutes. Using
a metal spatula, transfer cookies to rack & cool
completely. Makes 23-26 cookies

(recipe: Giada-Food Network)

Creamy Baked Pumpkin Risotto

5 C. chicken or vegetable broth
2 C. arborio rice
2 C. pumpkin or butternut squash, small dice
1 1/2 C. canned pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
1/2 medium yellow onion, minced
1/2 C. finely chopped fresh basil
1/4 C. finely grated Parmesan cheese
2 T. mascarpone cheese
2 T. olive oil

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.; arrange oven rack
in middle of oven.
Combine broth, rice, squash, puree & onion in 3 qt.
baking dish; season with salt & freshly ground black
pepper; stir to evenly combine. Cover tightly with
aluminum foil; bake, stirring occasionally, until most
of water has been absorbed & rice granules are puffed,
about 35-30 minutes. Remove from oven, stirring in
remaining ingredients, season to taste & serve. Serves 6

(recipe: Food Network)

Pumpkin Apple Cider Soup

2 apples, peeled & diced
1 small yellow onion, peeled & finely
1 tsp. kosher salt
6 C. chicken stock
3/4 C. apple cider
1/2 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 tsp. finely chopped fresh thyme
2 (15 oz, ea) cans pumpkin puree
3 T. light brown sugar
1/2 C. cream

Place a large, heavy bottomed pot over
medium heat. Add olive oil, onion, apple
& pinch kosher salt. Saute 5 minutes until
onions are soft & translucent. Pour in chicken
stock, cider, thyme & pepper; bring to boil
1 minute. Add pumpkin, stir ingredients
together until smooth. Let cool a little then
pour into blender (in batches); process until
smooth. Return soup to pot; stir in cream &
sugar until sugar is completely dissolved.
Simmer soup about 10 minutes until heated
through. Serve warm. Serves 7

(recipe: Kraft Foods)

Crockpot BBQ Shortribs

4 lb. beef short ribs
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1/4 C. flour
1 C. barbecue sauce
1/4 C. honey
1 T. yellow mustard

Place ribs in crockpot; top with onions,
then combine remaining ingredients. Cover
& cook on Low 6-8 hours or High 3-4 hours.
Remove ribs from crockpot; cover to keep
warm. Skim excess fat from sauce; return
ribs to sauce. Stir gently until evenly coated.
Serves 8

NOTE: Good served with mashed potatoes
or over hot, cooked noodles.

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Cheesy Potato Skins

6 Russet potatoes
olive oil
coarse salt
10-12 slices bacon, cooked & chopped
2 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 C. butter, melted
scallions or green onions, chopped
sour cream or ranch dressing

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Wash & dry potatoes, pierce with fork. Rub
olive oil all over potatoes & sprinkle with
coarse salt. Bake 1 hour or until potatoes
are tender when pierced with fork. Remove
from oven, let cool about 10-15 minutes. Cut
potatoes in half, lengthwise; scoop out potato
into a large bowl, being careful to not scoop
too deep into skins. Line a baking sheet with
parchment paper; place potato skins on sheet
with cut sides down. Brush outer skins with
melted butter; bake 15 minutes. You want
skins to be crispy. After 15 minutes, turn skins
over & fill with cheese & bacon. Bake 5-10
minutes longer until cheese is melted & bubbly.
Remove from oven, sprinkle with scallions & more
bacon. Top with sour cream or ranch dressing.

(recipe: Facebook)

Chicken ‘n Dressing Casserole

4 chicken breasts, cooked & cubed
1 pan prepared cornbread, cooled &
4 eggs, boiled & chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
2 C. chicken broth
1 can cream of mushroom soup

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine all ingredients & place in
9 X 13 baking pan. Bake 35-45 minutes
or until set.

(recipe: Facebook)

I still have a few more pumpkin recipes but will be posting them soon as people are still using pumpkin during Thanksgiving, too.

I must admit: right now I’m deep into PROCRASTINATION! I know that I have to get going to finish my special needs group’s next 2-month newsletter, and yet: (1) read all my emails (2) checked out all I’d missed on Facebook and now (3) am finishing up this blog post – I’m B-A-D! Oh well, there’s always tomorrow! (Now I sound like Scarlett O’Hara from Gone with the Wind!)

Dinner tonight is spaghetti with meatballs & homemade garlic bread – it’s a big favorite with the guys here. Youngest’s truck is still holding up – he’s happy and I’m SUPER happy I don’t have to go out in weather like today – I can just sit here on my friendly little computer, happily typing away while sipping on lemonade!

Guess it’s really time for me to get off here and get busy with the newsletter.

Enjoy your day/night! Happy ‘candy-hunting’, if you’re so inclined!



(Sorry, seems my computer is ‘doing it’s own thing’ when it comes to size of font/Bold or not . . . sigh)

Monday Musings


Here it is, almost the end of October! It’s noon and 50 ‘balmy’ degrees – sun shining, lots of leaves blowing around and a clear Fall day. Early this morning found me racing to the Secretary of State’s office to get the title transferred on youngest son’s (new to him) pickup truck. I have learned, from many past experiences at said place, you MUST get there BEFORE they open at 9 a.m. on either a Monday or Friday – otherwise you can stand to wait AT LEAST an hour or more – sigh. We were the first in line and accomplished our task in 5 minutes – $29 lighter (son’s wallet, not mine) we were on our way to pick up said truck. (If you’re familiar with ‘street language’ – it’s a hoopdie) that means it’s a ‘beater’ – let’s just say my first view of it was a bit of a surprise: ignoring some rust, apparently it was originally a electric blue BUT someone decided to spray paint it a dull black – lovely (especially with bits of electric blue peeking through where the black wore off . . . sigh). The person he bought the car from was not there (he was at work) – it took son & I about 20 minutes to get the truck started AND when we did, huge plumes of white came bursting out of the exhaust pipes – REEKING of burnt plastic! Let’s just say – I’ll be surprised if this vehicle lasts a week, it’s THAT bad. Youngest son INSISTED he wanted to do this deal – so it’s all on him. Even middle son said: “Why didn’t he learn from MY past car mistakes! WHY would he buy a piece of junk like that?” Oh well . . . I followed him the 40 minutes home, really praying that it wouldn’t conk out at a light because we hadn’t had time to even sign it up for AAA – so any road service assistance would have been non-existent. We made it home OK; my husband is grumbling under his breath about this piece of  . . . ., it’s all I can do to keep my mouth shut – it’s ALL on youngest son; it was HIS decision. I’m just hoping he doesn’t lose his $500 he saved up for this truck.

I was just thinking: “Hey! I don’t have to structure my day today on HIS work schedule – I can do anything I want!”  (within reason, that is). A little later I’m going to throw together a stew. I had taken a frozen package of meat out of the basement freezer (with some freezer ‘ice’ on it) – package said something like Beef Round Steak Strips. Funny-never seen BEEF look like CHICKEN strips before! (I wonder, now, what I was thinking when I bought this!???) Anyway, guess we’re going to have CHICKEN stew instead of Beef – ought to be interesting! (I’d love to make chicken dumplings with it, but husband doesn’t like the texture of them . . .sigh). A little later on I need to start comping up the next special needs group’s newletter for Nov/Dec. – that will be due to mail out before Oct 30th. (yes, I’m overdue – I know . . . )


Beef & Pumpkin Shepherd’s Pie

1 large Russet potato (about 3/4 lb), peeled
& cut into chunks
1 (15 oz) can 100% pure pumpkin, divided
1/2 C. shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
1/2 tsp. salt, divided
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper, divided
1 T. vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 large carrots, peeled & chopped
3/4 lb. ground beef or turkey
1 T. flour
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 C. beef broth
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

Place potato chunks in medium saucepan;
cover with water & bring to boil. Cook, over
medium-high heat 10-15 minutes or until
tender; drain. Return potatoes to saucepan;
add 1 C. pumpkin, 1/4 C. cheese, 1/4 tsp. salt
& 1/4 tsp. pepper; beat with hand-held mixer
until smooth; cover.
Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.
Add onion & carrots; cook, stirring occasionally,
5 minutes or until carrots begin to soften. Stir in
ground beef , flour, garlic powder & remaining 1/4
tsp. pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3-4 minutes
or until beef is  no longer pink. Stir in broth, remaining
pumpkin & Worcestershire sauce; bring to boil. Cook
stirring occasionally, 2-3 minutes or until mixture has
thickened slightly.
Preheat broiler
Spoon beef mixture into ungreased 9 in. deep-dish pie pan
or other broiler-proof casserole dishhh (1 1/2 – 2 Qt).
Spoon pumpkin-potato mixture evenly over beef filling
spreading gently. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 C. cheese.
Broil 5 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned.
Makes 8 servings

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Impossible Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

1 C. Bisquick baking mix
1 C. sugar
3 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 C. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1 2/3 C. hot water

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Grease 8 inch square pan.
Mix Bisquick,1/2 C. sugar & 3 T. cocoa powder.
Stir in milk & vanilla until blended. Pour into
prepared pan. Sprinkle evenly with remaining
sugar & cocoa powder; pour water over top –
DO NOT STIR. Bake 40 minutes or until top is
firm. Dust lightly with confectioner’s sugar, if
desired. Spoon into dessert bowls while hot.

Note: tastes great with vanilla ice cream or
whipping cream

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Anti-Vampire Garlic Dip

1/2 C. milk
1 C. cottage cheese
2 small garlic cloves, minced
2 T. chopped parsley
2 T. chopped chives
1/8 tsp. paprika
1/8 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. onion salt

Blend all ingredients together in
blender until smooth.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)


1 (18oz) can pumpkin (or fresh equivalent)
1 box yellow cake mix (2 layer size)
1 C. sugar
1/2 C. melted margarine or butter
1 (13oz) can evaporated milk
(not sweetened condensed)
3/4 C. chopped pecans or walnuts
3 eggs
3 tsp. cinnamon

Thawed Cool Whip or
Whipped Cream for topping

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Beat eggs and milk together; add pumpkin,
sugar and cinnamon. Mix until well blended.
Pour into a 9×13 greased pan. Sprinkle dry cake
mix over mixture. Drizzle with melted margarine.
Sprinkle with chopped nuts. Bake 50-60 min or
until done. Serve (warm or cold) with Cool Whip or
whipped cream.

(recipe: Facebook)

Crockpot Cashew Chicken

2 lb. boneless skinless chicken thigh
tenders or chicken breast tenders
1/4 C. flour
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 T. cooking oil
1/4 C. soy sauce
2 T. rice wine vinegar
2 t. ketchup
1 T. brown sugar
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. grated fresh ginger
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 C. cashews

Combine flour & pepper in large Ziplock bag.
Add chicken; shake to coat. Heat oil in large
skillet over medium-high heat. Brown chicken
about 2 minutes on each side. Place chicken
in crockpot. Combine soy sauce, vinegar, ketchup,
sugar, garlic, ginger & pepper flakes in small bowl;
stir up then pour over chicken. Cook on Low 3-4 hours.
Add cashews & stir. Serve over rice. Makes 4-6 servings.

NOTE: If you like the sauce & want to have some to pour over the chicken & rice, double sauce ingredients.

(recipe: Facebook)

Ham and Cheese Biscuit Cups

1 tube refrigerator biscuits
1/2 cup cheddar or Swiss cheese
1/2 cup ham cut in small pieces
2-3 eggs
Salt and pepper
Cooking spray/butter/oil

Preheat oven 375 degrees.
Grease muffin tin and press biscuits flat
with your hands then press them into the
muffin tin cups. Fill biscuit cups with ham
and cheese. Whip eggs in a separate bowl
and fill cups evenly with egg mixture.
Season with salt and pepper. Bake
20-25 minutes, until eggs have set and
biscuits are golden brown.

(recipe: Facebook)

Cheese Dip

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese
2 C. grated Cheddar cheese (or Jalapeno Jack)
1 C. mayonnaise
1 small red onion (or green onions) chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place all ingredients in shallow baking dish
(9″ square or round quiche). Microwave on
High 2 minutes or until ingredients are melted
enough to stir together; stir until combined.
Bake 20 minutes or until lightly browned.
Serve with wheat thins or Frito Scoops

(recipe: Facebook)

Healthy Spinach Dip

1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen chopped spinach,
thawed & juices squeezed out
1-2 (5 oz) cans sliced water chestnuts, diced
1 (8 oz) container 1% cottage cheese (blend
with blender until smooth & creamy)
1 packet dry ranch dressing mix

Mix all ingredients together & enjoy.

(recipe: Facebook)

Shortcut Chicken Manicotti

1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 C. water
1/4 lb. (4 oz) Velveeta, cut into 1/2 in. cubes
2 C. frozen broccoli florets*
12 manicotti shells, uncooked
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts,
cut into thin strips
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In medium microwaveable bowl, heat
soup, water & Velveeta on high 3 minutes
or until Velveeta is completely melted &
mixture is well blended, stirring after
2 minutes. Spread 1/3 mixture on bottom
of a 9 X 13 pan; add broccoli to remaining
soup mixture; mix well. Stuff pasta shells
with chicken; place in baking dish. Top with
remaining soup mixture & Parmesan; cover.
Bake 45-50 minutes or until pasta is tender &
chicken is done. Serves 4

*You can substitute your favorite frozen
vegetables for the broccoli

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Sesame Noodle Salad

3 T. crunchy peanut butter
3 T. warm water
1 T. sesame oil
1 tsp. ground fresh ginger
1 tsp. chopped garlic
1 tsp. honey or sugar
3 tsp. soy sauce
1 lb. pasta
chopped scallions

While pasta is cooking, mix all
other ingredients in large bowl. When
pasta is done, drain & mix with sauce.
Chill a few hours before serving. Garnish
with scallions just before serving.

(NOTE: salad best when served cold)

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Well, friends – that’s about ‘it’ for today.

Enjoy your day – relax a bit, rest a bit and don’t forget to SMILE a bit, too!



Thoughts on a Sunday Afternoon


It’s been another kind of busy week here; Grandson came (to our house) home not feeling well – turns out he has an ear infection which meant no flag football yesterday for him, his Dad OR us (as spectators). Next Saturday is the final game of the season – hope it will be somewhat warm. Our weather’s definitely beginning to show signs of the upcoming Winter – we’ve had two small (5 minutes each) bouts of hail in the past week! Now we’re only talking tiny hail, but come-on! I’m NOT ready for the white stuff yet! It’s 49 degrees F. today, a little sunny (on & off) and clear; lots of yellow leaves everywhere. I managed to take a really neat photo (using my cell camera) of a bright red Maple leaf with dark red veining. (I’d show it to you, but I don’t have a cable to hook up to my cell to ‘share’). All around us there are people/stores selling pumpkins – I love the colors of them, PLUS there are a good amount of pumpkin recipes coming in, too!


Pumpkin Sheet Cake

1 (15 oz) can canned pumpkin puree
2 C. sugar
1 C. vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt

1 (3 oz) pkg. cream cheese
5 T. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1 3/4 C. confectioner’s sugar
3 tsp. milk
1 C. chopped walnuts

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In mixing bowl, beat pumpkin, 2 C. sugar,
& oil; add eggs – mix well. In another bowl,
combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon & salt.
Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture; beat
until well blended. Pour batter into greased
15 X 10 baking pan. Bake 25-30 minutes or
until cake tests done; cool.
In mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, butter &
vanilla until smooth. Gradually add 1 3/4 C.
confectioner’s sugar; mix well. Add milk until
frosting reaches desired spreading consistency.
Frost cake; sprinkle top with nuts.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Quick Cheddar Chicken & Noodles

1 T. vegetable oil
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into
1″ chunks
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
1 (6 oz) pkg. egg noodles, uncooked
1 (14-16 oz) pkg. frozen broccoli, red pepper,
onion & mushroom mix (or favorite veg. mix)
1 T. Italian seasonings (optional)
7 oz. shredded Cheddar cheese

In 5 qt. skillet over medium heat, heat oil.
Sprinkle chicken with garlic powder; cook in
oil until no longer pink, about 5 min., turning
occasionally. Add broth; heat to boiling then
add uncooked noodles & froz. vegetables. Stir
to coat noodles with liquid (add Ital. seasonings
if desired). Heat to boiling; reduct heat, cover &
simmer 10 minutes or until noodles are tender,
stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in
cheese until melted.

(recipe: Sunday newspaper flier)

Crockpot Broccoli Cheese Soup

1/2 C. onion, chopped
2 T. butter
1 (10 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 C. milk
1 lb. Velveeta cheese, cubed
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen chopped broccoli

Saute onion in butter. Combine all ingredients
on Low in crockpot 3-4 hours. Do not add

(recipe: Facebook)

Tomato Bacon Rolls

8 slices bacon
1 tomato, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
3 oz. mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 oz. Parmesan cheese, shredded
1/4 C. mayonnaise
1 tsp. dried basil
1 can refrigerated crescent roll dough

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Cook bacon in skillet over medium heat
until evenly browned. Drain & place bacon
on paper towels. Crumble bacon into small
pieces in medium mixing bowl. Add tomato,
onion, cheese, mayonnaise & basil; mix well.
Unroll dough; place a spoonful of tomato
mixture in center of each roll. Roll up each
piece with mixture inside. Place on ungreased
baking sheet & bake 11-14 minutes or until
golden brown.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Garlic, Cheese Meatball Rolls

1 can Pillsbury Grands Jr. Golden Layers
refrigerated buttermilk or flaky biscuits
20 frozen, cooked Italian-style meatballs (about
5 oz), thawed
4 (1 oz, ea) sticks string cheese, each cut into
5 pieces
grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tsp. garlic powder or salt
1 C. marinara sauce, heated (optional, for dipping)

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Separate dough into 10 biscuits. Separate each
biscuit into 2 layers; press each biscuit layer into
3 inch round. Place one meatball & 1 string cheese
piece in center of each dough round. Wrap dough
around meatball & cheese, pressing edges to seal.
Place balls, seam-side down, in ungreased 8 or 9
inch round cake pan, in single layer. Sprinkle evenly
with Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning & garlic
powder. Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown
and no longer doughy in centers. Serve with warm
marinara sauce for dipping. Makes 20 balls

(recipe: Facebook)

Spiced Apple-Butternut Squash Soup

2 T. butter or margarine
1 onion, chopped
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 butternut squash* (2 lb, ea), peeled, chopped
(about 6 C.)
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled & chopped
3 (14.5 oz, ea) cans vegetable broth
1/2 C. cream cheese spread

Melt butter in large saucepan on medium heat.
Add onions; cook 4 minutes or until crisp-tender,
stirring occasionally. Stir in nutmeg; cook 1 minute.
Add squash, apples & broth; stir & bring to boil.
Cover & simmer on medium-low 50 minutes or until
squash & apples are tender, stirring occasionally. Cool
soup slightly. Add, in batches, to food processor or
blender. Cover & process until smooth then return
to saucepan. Cook on medium-low until heated
through, stirring occasionally. Ladle soup into 8
serving bowls. Top with 1 T. cream cheese spread each;
stir gently to swirl.

* Can substitute chopped peeled pumpkin for butternut

(recipe: Kraft foods)


Pumpkin Corn Muffins

1 1/4 C. flour
1 C. yellow corn meal
1/3 C. granulated sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 large eggs
1 1/4 C. 100% pure pumpkin (Libby)
1/3 C. evaporated milk
1/4 C. vegetable oil
1 (11 oz) can whole-kernel corn, drained

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Grease or use paper liners in
18-muffin cups. Beat eggs, pumpkin,
evaporated milk, vegetable oil & corn
in medium bowl until combined; add
to flour mixture, mix thoroughly. Spoon
batter into prepared muffin cups. Bake 25-
30 minutes or until wooden toothpick inserted
into centers comes out clean. Serve warm.
Makes 18 muffins.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Italian Roasted Vegetables

1 medium zucchini, sliced 1/4″ thick
1 medium yellow summer squash, sliced
1/4″ thick
1 medium red onion, sliced 1/4″ thick
1 T. cooking oil
1/4 tsp. dried basil
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Combine all ingredients in large bowl;
toss to coat. Spread vegetables in single
layer in shallow baking pan. Bake 12 minutes
or until crisp-tender, turning once.
Serves 4 (3/4 C. each)



Tomorrow I will be going on a ‘trip’ I’m not looking forward to making: to the Secretary of State’s office to get youngest son’s truck registered, etc. We have all the paperwork in order, but going there on a Monday OR Friday is a nightmare – the wait is almost always an HOUR or longer! The lines are crazy-long! I was really hoping they opened at 8 a.m., but no – (of course not!) it’s 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.  The ‘fun’ in this whole endeavor is: #1 trip to Sec. of State THEN a good 40 minute drive to where the truck is located. Hopefully the man he’s purchasing it from will have the BRAKES FIXED like he promised! This entire ‘truck purchase’ has been crazy: first son didn’t get the needed monies together until a week later than planned, then said owner couldn’t FIND the title! Then, he found it only to inform us he’s ‘been busy and hasn’t got around to fixing the brakes yet!” SIGH!!! Son has asked his boss for a re-arrangement of his hours tomorrow in order to get all this truck fiasco done! He usually works 1-9:30 p.m. but tomorrow she’s allowing him to come in 3:30 – midnight (hopefully that will be more than enough time IF he has the brakes done!). Son said to me just as he was hopping out of my van at work: “See, Mom – this will be your last time of having to drive me to work!” (I’m thinking . . . not if you follow the same craziness your brothers did – old vehicle, probably a break-down some time in the near future – but let’s not jinx it!). Yes, it WILL be nice to be able to arrange my OWN schedule instead of my schedule revolving around HIS work schedule! Oh well . . . such is life, right?

I’ll close this missive now and let you get back to whatever you WERE doing before stopping by here!  Enjoy your day – stay warm- do something YOU like doing! (my on-going mantra to you these days!)



Published in: on October 27, 2013 at 1:33 pm  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , , , ,

Just checkin’ on some things


For starters, we just signed the paperwork to have a new roof & gutters put on our house – YAY! That’s one project that’s LONG overdue! Called Hanson’s (yes, THAT company with the irritating commercials); both of us are very happy with our choices – they should commence measuring Oct. 31st.

Have you ever had a situation where something just sort of sits in the back of your brain/mind and every once in awhile sort of stabs you with: “Hey, whatever happened to . . . ?” Well, that’s me, today. To boil this down some, I officially turned 65 in June which allowed me to finally apply for my retirement pension (for 16 years service with good old Michigan Bell Telephone Company.) I phoned the company, stated my case and they sent me out a huge packet of paperwork to be filled out. I did so, they said: “Six to eight weeks” before you get your first check. I waited – nothing. Finally called them and they mailed me out ANOTHER packet, this time one of the papers had to be notarized – did that at our local bank and mailed it back immediately.(that was sometime in July). Today that niggling thought hit again: “Wonder whatever happened to that check?” Just called good old AT&T AGAIN – turns out they NEVER received the notarized paperwork – have to start the process ALL OVER AGAIN! BIG SIGH . . . The representative just faxed me over the papers I have to sign and mail back (guess, this time I don’t need the notary – so she said). What a PAIN! Good thing I’m not desperate to LIVE OFF THAT CHECK, eh?

Gas prices around here keep going lower – YAY! Now they went from $3.39.9 to $3.33/9 – that’s great! Youngest son is purchasing an older truck this Friday – that should (hopefully) lighten up the amount of driving I do in a week. Hope, this time, that he’s able to keep the truck for a long time with no accidents/etc. He’s 19 – who knows? (I remember his older brother going through quite a few cars his first few years of driving – not fun.)


Pineapple Nut Cookies

1 (8 oz) can crushed pineapple
(packed in juice)
1/2 C. butter or margarine
2 C. flour
1 C. brown sugar (firmly packed)
1 egg
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla
1 4/ tsp. baking soda
1/2 C. chopped pecans

Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting:

2 T. cream cheese, softened
1 T. butter or margarine
1 T. reserved pineapple juice
1 1/2 C. powdered sugar

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Grease cookie sheet; set aside. Drain
pineapple, reserving juice for frosting;
set both aside. In large mixing bowl,
beat butter with elec. mixer on medium-
high speed, 30 seconds or until softened.
Add half of flour to butter, then add
brown sugar, eggs, baking powder, vanilla &
baking soda; beat until thoroughly combined. Beat or stir in remaining flour; add drained pineapple & nuts; mix well. Drop dough from rounded teaspoon 2 inches apart on prepared cookie sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Remove cookies from sheet; cool on wire rack.Makes approx. 42 cookies

In small bowl beat cream cheese, butter &
1 T. reserved juice until well blended. Gradually beat in 1 1/2 C. confectioners sugar. If necessary, beat in an additional 1-2 T. reserved juice to make frosting of spreadable consistency. Makes 3/4 C.frosting.

NOTE: Cookies are even better the next day –
store in refrigerator


Creamy Avocado Bacon Dip

1 (ripe) avocado
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/3 C. sour cream
1/4 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. hot sauce
2 T. bacon, cooked & crumbled
1/4 C. cucumber, finely diced
2 sprigs cilantro, or 2 sprigs fresh basil
(for garnish – optional)

Peel, pit & mash avocado with fork; place
in a bowl. Mix in lemon juice, blending
well, then add sour cream, mix well. Add
in rest of ingredients, blending well. Garnish,
if desired. Cover & refrigerate. Makes 4 servings.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Stuffed Pepper Soup

3 C. cooked brown rice
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 C. chopped green bell pepper
1/2 C. chopped red bell pepper
1 C. finely diced onion
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans petite diced tomatoes
1 3/4 C. tomato sauce
2 C. chicken broth
1/2 tsp. dried marjoram
salt & pepper, to taste

In large pot or Dutch oven, brown ground
beef on high heat; season with salt. Drain fat,
reduce heat to medium-low. Add peppers, onions
& garlic; cook 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, tomato
sauce, chicken broth, marjoram & season with
salt & pepper, to taste. Cover & simmer on Low
30 minutes. Serve about 1 1/3 C. soup and top with
1/2 C. cooked brown rice in each bowl. Makes
about 9 1/2 Cups.


Crockpot Chicken Taco Chili

1 onion, chopped
1 (16 oz) can black beans, rinsed & drained
1 (16 oz) can kidney beans, rinsed & drained
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen corn kernels
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans diced tomatoes w/chilies
1 packet taco seasoning
1 T. cumin
1 t. chili powder
3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
chili peppers, chopped (optional)
1/4 C. chopped fresh cilantro

Combine beans, onion, chili peppers, corn,
tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder & taco
seasoning in crockpot. Place chicken on top &
cover. Cook, on Low 10 hours or High 6 hours.
A half hour before serving, remove chicken &
shred. Return chicken to crockpot; stir well.
Top with fresh cilantro. Serves 10

NOTE: You can also add shredded cheese and/or
sour cream.


No Bake Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies

1 1/2 C. white sugar
1/2 C. brown sugar
3/4 C. butter
2/3 C. milk
1 (3.4 oz) box instant pumpkin spice pudding mix
(if you can’t find, substitute vanilla pudding and
1 T. pumpkin pie spice)
3 1/2 C. quick cooking oats
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. vanilla

In saucepan, combine sugars, butter &
milk; bring to boil – boil 2 minutes. Remove from
heat; add in pudding mix, stirring to combine
completely. Add pumpkin pie spice, vanilla &
oats. Stir to combine; let stand 5 minutes. Drop
by rounded tablespoonfuls onto waxed paper;
allow to cool completely. Store in airtight

(recipe: Facebook)

Cheesy Ham Bubble Bakes


1 (6 oz) pkg. smoked ham, chopped
3/4 c. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 (12 oz) can refrigerated buttermilk
biscuits (10 biscuits)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine chopped ham & cheese in large
bowl. Cut each biscuit into 4 pieces; add
to ham mixture; mix lightly. Spoon into
8 muffin cups sprayed with nonstick spray.*
Bake 20 minutes or until puffed & golden
brown. Cool 10 minutes before removing
from  pan. Serve warm. Makes 8 servings

*Instead of using muffin tins, you can spoon
ham mixture into 8 mounds on baking sheet
sprayed with nonstick spray, bake as directed.

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Black Magic Cake

1 3/4 C. flour
2 C. white sugar
3/4 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1 C. strong brewed coffee
1 C. buttermilk
1/2 C. vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Grease & flour two 9 inch round
cake pans or one 9 X 13 pan. In large
bowl, combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking
soda, baking powder & salt. Make a well
in the center – add eggs, coffee, buttermilk,
oil & vanilla. Beat 2 minutes on medium speed;
batter will be thin. Pour into prepared pans. Bake
30-40 minutes or until toothpick inserted into
center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes, then
remove from pans & finish cooling on wire rack.
Frost as desired.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

3-Ingredient Chicken

1 whole (or cut up) chicken
packet dry Italian seasoning mix
1/2 C. brown sugar

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mix Italian mix & brown sugar; coat
chicken on all sides. Line pan in foil
because dressing/sugar will caramelize.
Bake until golden brown – 25 minutes on
each side.

(recipe: Facebook)

Pumpkin Dump Cake

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin PUREE
1 (10 oz) can evaporated milk
1 C. light brown sugar
3 eggs, slightly beaten
3 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 box yellow cake mix
2 sticks butter, melted
1 C. coarsely crushed graham crackers or
chopped pecans or walnuts
1/2 C. toffee bits (optional)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13 baking pan with nonstick
spray. In large bowl combine pumpkin,
evap. milk, sugar, eggs & pumpkin pie
spice; stir to combine then pour into
prepared pan. Sprinkle entire box of
dry cake mix on top, then nuts or graham
crackers & toffee chips. Pour melted butter
evenly over top. Bake 45-50 minutes until
center is set & edges are lightly browned.

Serve with ice cream or whipped cream.

(recipe: Facebook)

Let’s see – what else is happening around here? It’s a ‘balmy’ 47 degrees F. outside, sun brightly shining and fall leaves covering everything. (Hey, it’s better than gloomy & raining!) I actually think that this weekend is only slated for grandson’s flag football game – Wow! That’s a first (for the past 3-4 weekends). Sometimes it’s just nice to have a minimum of ‘scheduled’ events/appointments – know what I mean? (Now – the trick is: seeing if we actually DO get to only have one event! We’ll see . . .)

Hope you’re enjoying your day – find a good book to read, enjoy a nice sweet, crisp fall apple, take a walk and enjoy the changing colors of Fall. Whatever you chose – do something YOU enjoy!



Typical Fall Day


Sitting here contentedly WARM and INSIDE while it’s mid 40’s outside, grey/gloomy and lightly raining. Yes, I know we have to have days like this as a precursor to Winter, but I really like SUNSHINE! and, Yes, the golden & red leaf colors ARE beautiful along with all the oranges of the pumpkins – sigh, just don’t want to admit cold weather is coming!

Lots of great Fall/Winter recipes coming in; planning on making Enchiladas for dinner. We like them because they’re filling AND because they can be used as leftovers for several days. The trick, this time, is making LESS of them! I’m so used to making about 15-18 of the really big burrito-sized tortillas; ought to be interesting to see how I down-size!


Kentucky Apple Cake

2 sticks margarine
2 C. sugar
2 large eggs
2 1/2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/8 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
3 C. finely chopped apple
1 C. chopped walnuts
2-3 T. milk

3/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. margarine
1/4 C. buttermilk
1 T. light corn syrup
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Grease & flour a 9 X 13 baking pan.
Cream together in large bowl margarine &
sugar. Add eggs; mix well. In separate bowl
combine flour, baking powder, baking soda
salt & cinnamon. Add dry ingredients to
first bowl; mix well. Mix in apples, walnuts &
milk. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan and
bake 50 minutes to 1 hour, or when a toothpick
inserted into center comes out clean.

Combine all glaze ingredients except vanilla, in
medium pan. Stir & cook to rolling boil. Remove
from heat; add vanilla; mix well. Pour & spread
glaze over HOT cake as soon as cake is removed
from oven. Let cake cool completely before
serving. (The longer it sets, the better it gets).


Baked Spaghetti Squash & Cheese

5 1/2 C. cooked spaghetti squash (about 2
1 T. butter
1 T. olive oil
1/4 C. minced onion
1/4 C. flour (or 2 T. corn starch for Gluten Free)
2 C. milk
1 c. chicken broth (or veg. broth for vegetarian)
8 oz. shredded mild Cheddar cheese
salt & pepper, to taste
4 C. baby spinach (about 4 oz)
1/8 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Cut squash in half lengthwise; remove & discard
seeds. Place squash on baking sheet; bake until
tender, about 1 hour. Separate the strands of
squash with a fork; place strands in medium bowl.
(discard shells/leave oven on). Heat butter & oil in
large saucepan over medium heat. Add onions; cook
2 minutes. Stir in flour; reduce heat to low & cook,
stirring continually 3-4 minutes. Add milk & chicken
broth, continue whisking, raising heat to medium-
high until it comes to a boil & becomes smooth &
thick, about 2 minutes stirring. Season with salt &
pepper. Remove from heat, add Cheddar cheese; mix
well until cheese is melted. Adjust salt & pepper, add
cooked spaghetti squash & baby spinach. Pour into a
baking dish & sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese. Bake
25-30 minutes until bubbly & golden. Makes 7 Cups.


German Meatballs & Gravy

1 large egg
3 1/2 C. milk, divided
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 C. finely shredded uncooked
peeled potatoes
2 T. finely chopped onion
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
1/8 tsp. black pepper
2 lb. ground beef
1/4 C. butter, cubed
1/4 C. flour
hot mashed potatoes, optional

In large bowl combine egg, 1/2 C.
milk, Worcestershire sauce, shredded
potatoes, onion, salt, nutmeg, ginger,
allspice & pepper. Crumble beef over
mixture & mix well. Shape into 48
meatballs. In large skillet over medium
heat, cook meatballs in butter in batches
until no longer pink; remove & keep warm.
Stir flour into drippings in skillet until
blended; gradually add remaining milk &
bring to boil. Cook & stir 2 minutes or
until thickened. Return meatballs to pan;
heat through. Serve with mashed potatoes,
if desired. Makes 8 servings.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Chile/Cheese Spirals

4 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1 C. (4 oz) shredded Cheddar cheese
1 (4 oz) can diced green chiles
3 green onions, sliced
1/2 C. chopped red bell pepper
1 (2 1/4 oz) can chopped ripe olives,
4 (8 inch) soft taco-size tortillas
bottled chunky salsa

Combine cream cheese, Cheddar
cheese, chiles, green onions, bell
pepper & olives in medium bowl.
Spread 1/2 C. mixture on each
tortilla; roll up. Wrap each roll in
plastic wrap; refrigerate 1 hour.
Remove plastic wrap; slice each
roll into six 3/4-in. pieces. Serve with
salsa for dipping.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Chicken Florentine Soup

2 medium boneless, skinless chicken
1 T. olive oil
2 T. butter
1 large shallot or 1 small onion, diced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 large carrots, peeled & chopped
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
3 T. flour
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (or, to taste)
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
4 C. chicken stock
1 C. Half & Half
3 C. fresh baby spinach*

Cut chicken breasts into bite-sized
pieces; season with salt & pepper. Heat oil
in 2-3 qt. saucepan. Add chicken & cook until
no longer pink. Remove from pan with slotted
spoon; set aside. Add 2 T. butter to pan, onion,
carrots & celery. Cook 5 minutes until onions
are translucent. Add garlic, thyme, cayenne,
salt & pepper ; cook 3 minutes more. Add flour
to vegetables; cook 1 minute longer. Add chicken
stock slowly to mixture; cook 20 minutes or until
vegetables are tender & soup thickens. Add
Half & Half; cook & stir until thickened. Add chicken
& spinach, cooking another 5-10 minutes. Check
seasonings, add more salt/pepper/cayenne, to
taste. Serves 4

* Can use frozen spinach – thaw, then squeeze dry,
add 2 C.


“Roast” Pork & Apple Dinner in a Pan

4 bone-in pork chops, 3/4 ” thick
2 C. sliced fresh mushrooms
1 onion, sliced
2 T. balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing
1 1/2 C. instant white rice, uncooked*
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
1 C. water
2 McIntosh/ Granny Smith/ Rome Beauty
(your choice) apples, sliced
1 tsp. dried thyme leaves (or 1 T. fresh)

Cook chops in large nonstick skillet sprayed
with nonstick spray, on medium-high heat
4 minutes on each side, until evenly browned.
Add mushrooms, onions & dressing; cook 2
minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients; simmer on
medium-low heat 15 minutes or until chops are
done (145 degrees F.), rice is tender & liquid
is absorbed. Remove from heat; cover. Let
stand 3 minutes before serving. Serves 4

*Can substitute instant brown rice – let
finished dish stand (off heat) 5 minutes before

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Parmesan-Herb Biscuit Bread

1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 T. chopped fresh oregano*
1 (16.3 oz) tube refrigerated biscuits,
cut crosswise in half
3 T. butter, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 5 loaf pan with nonstick
cooking spray. Mix cheese & oregano in
medium bowl until well blended. Dip
biscuit pieces, one at a time, into butter
then cheese mixture, turning to evenly
coat each piece. Place in prepared pan.
Bake 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.
Cool 10 minutes; remove from pan to wire
rack; cool slightly. Makes 8 servings

*NOTE: you can substitute chopped fresh dill
for oregano

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Salted Chocolate Pecan Pie
(sea salt brings out the flavors in this

1 ready-to-use refrigerated pie crust
2 tsp. flour, divided
3 eggs
1 C. light corn syrup
1 C. sugar
2 T. butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C. pecan halves
2 oz. Semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely
1/2 tsp. sea salt

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Unroll pie crust; sprinkle with half flour.
Turn; sprinkle with remaining flour; press
firmly onto bottom & up sides of 9 inch pie
plate; flute edges. Whisk next 5 ingredients
until blended. Stir in nuts; pour into crust;
sprinkle with chopped chocolate. Bake 15
minutes. Reduce oven temp. to 350 degrees F.
Continue baking 30-35 minutes until top is
puffed & lightly browned. Cool completely,
sprinkle with salt after 15 minutes.

(recipe: Kraft foods)


Books: Have finished reading almost all the books I can find by Pittacus Lore (the “I Am Number Four” series). It’s surprising to me that I’m having this much difficulty FINDING them! Went on Amazon and was able to (sort of) figure out the entire list of books – it’s very strange. One commenter said that the ‘author’ is fictitious – it’s a book FACTORY, meaning the story line is thrown out to various writers and whomever wants to, grabs the story and continues it – WEIRD! I have one more book on ‘hold’ at the library and I know it’s not the LAST book. The other ‘goofy’ thing they’ve done with this series is: the latest of this book series are ONLY available on KINDLE books! That’s NOT fair to those of us who DON’T have those machines! Am I right?

Anyway, stepping off my soapbox now – our gas prices are staying the same: $3.44/9 for cheapest (Clark) – that’s a GOOD thing! Also glad the government is finally back Up & Running – goofy thing, politics! (I’m promised myself I WILL NOT post political views here, so you can relax).

Haven’t been doing anything ‘new’ in the crafting scene; just working on chemo caps, baby hats and attempting to finish the crocheted baby blanket (still have about 1/4 more to go before I run out of yarn and END this blanket!) Still haven’t decided whether to take back up the tatting; I like the fact that I’m able to DO this craft, but it takes so VERY long to create such a very small object (I know – quit whinning!). For now, the ball of thread and my tatting needle just sit on my computer ‘waiting’ for me to decide.

Enjoy your day – remember to: (A) Stay Warm (B) Do something YOU enjoy doing (C) Rest when you’re tired (D) Have some FUN!!!



‘Nother Quiet Day


It’s a bit warmer out there (66 degrees F) and sunny with cool Fall breezes ruffling the (MANY) leaves in our driveway, on the front and back lawns, etc. Today was supposed to be ‘pick up grandson’ day, but his Mom texted that his other grandmother is getting him – apparently they have somewhere to go together.

Got a pleasant surprise on my emails today – if you read yesterday’s post, I posted a site from Facebook where a lady was knitting a huge project on really big needles. I left a comment on her blog and she wrote me back! I wondered how big the entire project was and she said:

“Oops! I should have mentioned the size of the panel! It was 1.5 meters wide (about 59 inches), 4 meters long (a little over 13 feet). I knitted the first 3 meters and had to pass it off to a friend for the last meter (my arms were killing me!) The yarn was purchased by the client straight from a mill, so I wouldn’t know what thickness it measures to, but safe to say it was double-bulky at the least! Thanks for sharing the story.”

Pretty neat! The photos show the immensity of the panel but I wasn’t able to copy the photos onto this blog. If you’re still interested in seeing it, here’s the link:

Dinner tonight is making a sort of Beef Stroganoff from leftover pork roast – over rice. It works, uses up the extra meat AND we like it!


Tiramisu Trifle

2 T. instant coffee
1 1/2 C. water, cold
4 C. milk
2 pkgs. Devil’s Food chocolate
pudding (3.9 oz, ea)
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
24 Lady Fingers*
8 oz. semi-sweet mini chocolate chips
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip*
1/2 tsp. cocoa powder

Pour coffee granules into a glass
measuring cup with the water; microwave,
uncovered, 1 minute; let stand in microwave.
Mix milk, pudding & cream cheese in large
bowl on medium setting. Split Lady Fingers
in half, lengthwise, & place in bottom of
trifle dish, cut side up. Drizzle 1/4 of coffee
mix evenly over lady fingers. Spread 1/4 of
pudding mix over that, then 1/4 Cool Whip,
then sprinkle 1/4 of choc. chips on top.
Repeat this order 3 more times, ending with
Cool Whip. Dust top with cocoa powder &
cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate 6 hours
before serving.

*there will be some leftover after using on

NOTE: You can also use pound cake or angel
food cake if you can’t find lady fingers


Crockpot Pineapple BBQ Chicken

4-5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thawed
1 bottle BBQ sauce
1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks, drained

Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick spray.
Place chicken breasts in bottom & cover with
BBQ sauce. Empty can of drained pineapple
chunks on top. Cook on High 2-3 hours or
on Low 4-6 hours.

(recipe: Facebook)

Country-Style Fried Potatoes

1/3 C. shortening
6 large potatoes, peeled & cubed
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. paprika

In large cast iron skillet, heat shortening
over medium-high heat. Add potatoes &
cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes
are golden brown. Season with salt, pepper,
garlic powder & paprika. Serve hot.

(recipe: Mary Free-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Chicken with Apples

1 (2 1/2 – 3 lb) broiler fryer chicken, quartered
or cut up
1/4 C. butter or margarine
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 C. apple cider or apple juice
1 tsp. lemon juice
4 tart cooking apples, peeled & sliced (3 C.)
1 T. cornstarch
1 T. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

In skillet, brown chicken slowly in butter about 10 minutes, turning often. Remove from heat; drain off fat. Sprinkle chicken with salt & pepper. Add cider & lemon juice; cover & simmer 25 minutes. Add apples; simmer until just tender, 5-10 minutes longer. Remove chicken & apples to platter; keep warm. Skim fat from pan juices then measure juices; add water, if needed, to make 1 Cup. In saucepan, blend cornstarch, brown sugar & cinnamon. Stir in juices & cook, stirring, until thickened & bubbly. Season to taste with salt & pepper. Spoon some sauce over chicken & apples; pour remaining sauce into gravy bowl. Makes 4 servings.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Soft Frosted Pumpkin Cookies


2 C. butter, softened
2 C. sugar
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 (15 oz) can solid-packed pumpkin
4 C. flour


1/2 C. butter
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/4 C. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
5 C. powdered sugar
1 T. maple syrup (optional)
dash salt

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place 2 C. softened butter & 2 C. sugar
in stand mixer or large mixing bowl; mix
on Medium speed 2 minutes or until
light & fluffy. Scrape bottom of bowl using
rubber spatula so all ingredients are well
incorporated. Add 2 tsp. baking soda & 2
tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. cinnamon & 1
tsp. nutmeg; mix until combined. Add 2
eggs; mix until well combined. Add pumpkin;mix all together. (it will be a little clumpy). Add 4 C. flour, mix until combined. Spray a large cookie sheet with nonstick spray. Scoop dough into 1-2 inch balls & place on sheet.
NOTE: You can spray the inside of a cookie
scoop with nonstick spray – helps the balls
come out easier – dough is a bit sticky.
Bake 10-15 minutes until they spring back
when lightly pressed. Remove from oven; cool on cookie sheet or wire rack.

Place 1/2 C. butter & 1/2 C. brown sugar in medium
saucepan; melt butter & sugar together over medium-
high heat, whisking until smooth then pour into a
large mixing bowl. Add milk, vanilla, dash salt &
maple syrup (if using). Gradually add 5 C. powdered
sugar; mix until everything is well combined & glossy
looking. When cookies have cooled, frost. You can add apinch of cinnamon on top of frosting, if you wish. Store leftovers in airtight container. Makes 60 cookies


Baked Parmesan Tomatoes

4 tomatoes, sliced
1/4 C. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. chopped fresh oregano
1/4 tsp. salt
freshly ground black pepper
4 tsp. olive oil

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
Place tomatoes, cut side up, on
a baking sheet. Top with Parmesan,
oregano, salt & pepper. Drizzle tops
with oil. Bake until tomatoes are
tender, about 10 minutes.

(recipe: Facebook)

Deviled Eggs with Bacon

12 large eggs
1/2 C. mayonnaise
2 T. yellow mustard
6 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled
1 small onion, chopped fine
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. smoked paprika

Boil eggs, cool & peel. Split eggs, lengthwise,
& put egg yolks in large bowl; mash yolks with
a fork. Place egg whites on serving dish; set aside.
Add onions & bacon to yolks; stir well. Add wet &
dry ingredients to yolk mixture; mix well. Taste to
see if enough salt/pepper – add more, if needed.

Stuffing Eggs:
(Method #1)
Using a spoon, scoop yolk mixture to a zip lock
plastic bag. Cut off a small portion of tip of bag
then use bag to pipe egg mixture into egg whites.

(Method #2)
Using a spoon, scoop yolk mixture into egg whites.

Once filled, refrigerate 30 minutes before serving.
Makes 24.


Baked Spaghetti Squash & Cheese

5 1/2 C. cooked spaghetti squash (about 2
1 T. butter
1 T. olive oil
1/4 C. minced onion
1/4 C. flour (or 2 T. corn starch for Gluten Free)
2 C. milk
1 c. chicken broth (or veg. broth for vegetarian)
8 oz. shredded mild Cheddar cheese
salt & pepper, to taste
4 C. baby spinach (about 4 oz)
1/8 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Cut squash in half lengthwise; remove & discard
seeds. Place squash on baking sheet; bake until
tender, about 1 hour. Separate the strands of
squash with a fork; place strands in medium bowl.
(discard shells/leave oven on). Heat butter & oil in
large saucepan over medium heat. Add onions; cook
2 minutes. Stir in flour; reduce heat to low & cook,
stirring continually 3-4 minutes. Add milk & chicken
broth, continue whisking, raising heat to medium-
high until it comes to a boil & becomes smooth &
thick, about 2 minutes stirring. Season with salt &
pepper. Remove from heat, add Cheddar cheese; mix
well until cheese is melted. Adjust salt & pepper, add
cooked spaghetti squash & baby spinach. Pour into a
baking dish & sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese. Bake
25-30 minutes until bubbly & golden. Makes 7 Cups.


Pumpkin Pecan Bread

2 eggs
1 1/4 C. firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 C. Miracle Whip salad dressing
1/4 C. milk
2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 C. chopped pecans

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Beat eggs lightly in large bowl with
whisk. Add sugar, pumpkin, Mir. Whip,
& milk; mix well. Combine dry
ingredients; stir until just moistened.
Gently stir in pecans then pour into
greased & floured 9 X 5 loaf pan. Bake
55 minutes – 1 hour, until toothpick
inserted into center comes out clean.
Cool 10 minutes; remove from pan &
cool completely. Cut into 16 slices to

NOTE: be careful stirring: over-stirring
creates a dense tough loaf

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

That’s all the excitement I can muster for now, hope you’re enjoying a nice Fall day. Have an apple – that’s a great Fall fruit! (my favorite is Fuji)



A Quiet Fall Day – Lots to Share!


Today started out a bit gloomy, but dry – that changed (Of course! It’s MICHIGAN! The weather is ALWAYS changing!) Drove youngest to work then proceeded to get some grocery shopping done – it began sprinkling right away and is still WET out there – sigh. I noticed, while at Krogers, that it seemed a bit more busy than usual for that time of day – mentioned it to the cashier and she agreed. I’m wondering if, now that the government is “Open” again, people are feeling it’s safe to spend money; just a thought.

Our gas prices are going down a little – they were up to $3.59/9, now at $3.49/9 – that’s a ‘start’.

Last night was my special needs group – our ‘every third Wednesday person, a very lovely lady who’s been teaching children for probably over 20 years, comes to do the lesson for the group while my partner/other leader & I have a business meeting (required by our paperwork). Yesterday afternoon, around 4 p.m. I got a very sad call from my partner/leader: she had just returned from another eye doctor appointment. Apparently her cataract surgery did NOT go as planned. She’s been having trouble ever since a week ago: eye leaking fluids, she can’t focus/blurred & double vision, upset stomach, etc. Turns out her implant came un-attached as is floating around in her eye! She has to have another surgery TODAY to locate it and re-attach it. What a mess!Our ‘usual’ teacher (mentioned above) was late getting there which caused me a bit of panic – I was NOT prepared with a lesson! My last thought was: If all else fails, we’ll SING! They love singing and I love playing for them. My teaching friend arrived – BIG SIGH of relief! The night went by well – 32 kids.

I’ve finally managed to obtain the rest of the books in the “I Am Four” set from the library. It took me 3 MONTHS to get the second book in the set! (Apparently there was only ONE copy within the ENTIRE connected library grouping! That’s amazing!) Sped through reading # 3 last night and plan to finish up # 4 today/tonight. To say these books are a fast-read is putting it mildly – they really KEEP your attention! I’ve never been one for Science Fiction, but these are the exception! IF you might be interested, they start with “I Am Number Four” by Pitacus Lore. (the ‘author’ is somewhat of an enigma – as that name is also the name of the BIG HERO in the stories. Back of book jacket don’t give you any more help, either. (there IS a website, but I haven’t explored that yet). It’s considered ‘Teen” reading, but I’m really enjoying it.


Beef Pot Pie

2 lb. stew beef, cut into 1/2″ cubes
2 T. flour
1/4 C. vegetable oil
1 medium chopped & peeled onion
1 clove garlic, minced
4 C. water
4 beef bullion cubes
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1 1/2 C. diced potato
1 C. diced carrot
1 medium green bell pepper, seeded &
1 (8 oz) pkg. frozen peas, thawed/drained
2 (9 inch) ready-made pie crusts

Lightly coat stew beef with flour. Heat oil in
large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat
until a drop of water sizzles when dropped in
oil. Add beef & brown, stirring frequently,
about 10 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to
rain, then return to skillet to heat.  Add onion &
garlic; saute until lightly browned, 8-10 minutes.
Carefully stir in water, bullion cubes, salt,
Worcestershire sauce & pepper. Return meat to
skillet, reduce heat & simmer 1 1/2 hours. Add
potatoes, carrots & green pepper; simmer another
20 minutes, stir in peas.

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
Line a 9 ” pie pan with one of the crusts, letting the
edge drape over side; using slotted spoon, fill pie with beef filling. Add a little cooking broth to filling, if
desired. Top with remaining crust, fold bottom edge
up over top edge, crimp edge with fork & cut a few
small slits in top crust to allow steam to escape while cooking. Bake 10 minutes, reduce heat to 350 degrees F.; bake 30 more minutes.  Makes 8 servings.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Peach Cake

1 large can sliced peaches, drained & mashed
2 C. flour
2 C. sugar
2 tsp. baking soda

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Drain peaches and empty into a large bowl; mash
lightly. Add flour, sugar and soda; mix well. Spray
9 x 13 pan; pour in batter. Bake 35 minutes.

3/4 C. sugar
3/4 regular sized can of evaporated milk
1 stick butter or margarine
1 C. coconut (I used a little more than a cup of coconut)
1 C. nuts, chopped

Boil everything but  nuts on top of  stove until thickens, remove from heat, stir in nuts and spread on cooled cake.

(recipe: Facebook)

Chicken Taco Bake
(only 6 ingredients!)

3 C. chopped, cooked chicken
2 1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
2 C. mild salsa
2 C. whole corn kernels
1 pkg. taco seasoning
15 (6″) corn tortillas

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine chicken & taco seasoning;
toss to coat. Mix chicken, salsa, corn &
2 C. cheese together until well blended.
Cut 3 of the tortillas in half & layer
4 whole tortillas & 2 halves into bottom
of a greased 9 X 13 baking dish, making
5 tortillas total per layer. Spread half
chicken mixture over tortillas & top with
5 more tortillas; 4 whole & 2 halves.
Layer with remaining chicken mixture &
corn tortillas on top. Sprinkle with last
half cup of cheese; cover tightly with foil.
Bake 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes
before cutting.

(recipe: Facebook)

Baked Potato Casserole

5 large potatoes, cooked & diced
6 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled
1 lb. ground beef, cooked & crumbled
1 lb. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 pint sour cream (2 C.)
2 chopped green onions
salt & pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mix all ingredients in greased casserole
dish. Bake 30 minutes.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe

Crockpot Corned Beef

2 1/2 – 3 1/2 lb. corned beef brisket
1 medium onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled & shredded
1 clove garlic, minced

Place corned beef in crockpot. Top with
pickling spices (comes in bag with
corned beef), onions, carrot & garlic.
Add enough water to cover meet. Cover
& cook on Low 8-9 hours until meat is
tender. Remove meat from crockpot
& slice.

(recipe: Francine-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Applesauce Bread

1/2 cup of softened butter
1 large egg
1 1/2 t baking soda
3/4 t nutmeg
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
1 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t kosher salt
1 1/2 cups applesauce
1 t of pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, first blend together butter,
egg, & sugar. Add flour, baking soda,
spices, & salt. After it starts to form a crumbly
dough, pour in applesauce; mix together.
I used two small loaf pans, pouring mixture evenly
into both. I sprayed my pans with cooking spray
first or you could use parchment paper, depending
on the dish you choose to bake them in. Bake about 40 minutes.

(recipe; Facebook)

Pan-Fried Asparagus

1/4 C. butter
2 T. olive oil
1 tsp. coarse salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb. fresh asparagus spears, trimmed

Melt butter in skillet over medium-high
heat. Stir in olive oil, salt & pepper; cook
garlic in butter 1 minute but do not brown.
Add asparagus; cook 10 minutes, turning
asparagus to ensure even cooking. Serves 4

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Bean-Cheese Taco Dip

1 (10 oz) can bean & bacon soup
1 (8 oz) carton sour cream
1/2 (8 oz) pkg. cubed Velveeta cheese
1 (1 oz) pkg. taco seasoning mix
1 tsp. minced garlic

In large saucepan combine soup, sour
cream, Velveeta, taco mix & garlic; cook,
on Low heat, stirring constantly, until
cheese melts. Serve warm with chips.
Makes 1 pint.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Caramel Corn Crunch

15 C. popped corn, unpopped kernels removed
2 C. brown sugar, firmly packed
1 C. butter
1/2 C. light corn syrup
1 tsp. kosher or sea salt
1 tsp. baking soda

Preheat oven 200 degrees F.
Place popped corn in large, ungreased roasting
pan or divide popcorn between two 9 X 13 baking
pans. Combine brown sugar, butter, corn syrup &
salt in 2 Qt. saucepan; bring to boil over medium
heat, stirring occasionally. Cook 5 minutes, without
stirring. Remove from heat, stir in baking soda &
mix well – mixture will become foamy.
Immediately pour caramel mixture over popped
corn & quickly toss to coat (OR divide evenly
between the two pans). Don’t expect all corn to
be coated, that will happen in the coarse of baking.

Bake 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Remove from
oven, immediately turn out of pan(s) onto a foil-lined
counter top & break up slightly. Cool & store in
tightly sealed container. Makes 16 (1 C.) servings

NOTE: If you don’t have a large roasting pan, you can
use those extra-large disposable aluminum roasting
pans. These can be used more than once

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Saw a very interesting article on Facebook today; a lady was asked to knit a VERY large piece of paneling for a project (I don’t believe she actually stated the finished size). She began by having her husband turn a very LARGE dowel into 2 needles, having another friend sand and smooth the wood. Here is the link to her blog:

She did not mention the size of the ‘yarn’ either – but hopefully you will get some idea of it’s immensity if you view the blog. (I was unable to ‘copy & paste’ the photos I’d copied from her blog. The needles were AT LEAST 4 feet LONG! Amazing!


On another note, just saw a post on Facebook for a friend of mine: Dan Smither, who is a missionary in Durban, South Africa. (If you’re a long-time reader of my blog, you will remember I made quite a few afghans for his ‘kids’ there). Dan & his wife, Rachel and their four daughters have been there for a good 6-7 years now. Rachel has put together a children’s choir and they will be coming to Michigan in December to perform! I’m SO excited for all of them. These children live in extreme poverty – AIDS is rampant, many of the children are parent-less. Dan & his family and other helpers work to get these children food/clothing/shelter and also help them acquire the much-needed documents required by the state for them to go to school. Dan is first and foremost a missionary and he preaches the Word not only through his lessons but also through his daily work with the children and those in the villages. I’m SO excited they are able to have this opportunity to minister to people here! If you might be interested in attending their concerts, their schedule is found here:

I have known Dan and his family ever since he was a young boy attending the same Christan school as my boys. He is a fine, upstanding adult who knows his purpose in life and is living it – in Durban, South Africa.

Well, that’s about all I’m ‘sharing’ today (it was a LOT!). Hope you are having a good day.

Enjoy your day and remember to SMILE a little, too!



Quick Post


Hello, Everyone!

I was noticing that I haven’t been writing as much as I used to, so thought I’d throw together a quick post. It’s Tuesday – Knit/Crochet night very soon; I always like going to that – you never know who’s coming and what they’ll be sharing idea-wise, or just in conversation – makes for a fun night.

Weather-wise it’s getting a bit cooler – right now it’s 64 degrees & a bit grey out – but then, it’s almost 5 p.m. and our days are getting shorter QUICKLY!  Leaves are turning, our driveway is covered in yellow leaves and tons of hickory nuts; back yard is covered in fallen (and still falling) black walnuts – the squirrels are in ‘High Alert’ trying to gather them all in before the snows fall.

Gas Prices – How are yours? A few days ago I decided to get my tank filled, as the price was $3.36/9 a gallon – today I’m VERY glad I did! The prices jumped 22 cents a gallon OVER NIGHT! I was quite shocked driving by my usual gas station (Clark) and seeing $3.89/9 a gallon today! Crazy . . .

Quick venture into a sort of ‘political’ comment: What are your thoughts on our government being ‘shut-down’? Are you concerned about this Debt deadline coming Oct 17th? I can’t believe the govm’t cut off the poor people from WIC – (Women/Infants/Children) – it’s a government funded food program for people who really need it. Personally, I can’t imagine being in that state and suddenly realizing you have NO FOOD! Scary stuff! Yes, I’ll give you that there are probably people on the program that really DON’T need it – but still – having young children and no food – not good. (Off my soapbox now . . . you can relax).

Recipes – getting lots of them; having trouble sorting through them all as it seems like there are tons of pumpkin or apple recipes. I ‘try’ to post some desserts, main courses, and veggies – just to be ‘well rounded’ (just in case you noticed . . . hehehe)


Pumpkin Crunch

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
1 1/2 C. sugar
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1 box yellow cake mix
1 C. melted butter
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine pumpkin through
cinnamon, pour into greased
9 X 13 pan. Sprinkle dry cake
mix over all, then pour melted
butter on top. Bake 1 hour 10

(recipe: Facebook)

Rueben Pizza

1 roll Pillsbury thin crust pizza dough
thousand island salad dressing
thinly shaved corned beef
sauerkraut, rinsed & drained*
10 squares sliced Swiss cheese

Prebake crust according to pkg directions.
Spread salad dressing on cooled crust. Top
with sauerkraut, corned beef & sliced cheese.
Return to oven; bake 6-10 minutes, to melt the

NOTE*: Make sure sauerkraut is well-drained so
that pizza doesn’t get soggy.

(recipe: Facebook)

Oven-baked Tacos

1 lb. ground beef
pkt. taco seasoning
refried beans
1/2 can tomato sauce
hard corn taco shells
shredded Cheddar cheese
shredded Mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Brown meat & drain grease. Add
taco seasoning & water (accordg to
pkg); when thickened, remove from
heat. Stand taco shells up in a casserole
dish, fill with some refried beans, then meat.
Sprinkle tops of tacos with both cheeses. Bake
10 minutes.

(recipe: Facebook)

Baked Potato Casserole

5 large potatoes, cooked & diced
6 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled
1 lb. ground beef, cooked & crumbled
1 lb. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 pint sour cream (2 C.)
2 chopped green onions
salt & pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mix all ingredients in greased casserole
dish. Bake 30 minutes.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe

Spicy Sausage Pizza Dip

1 lb. bulk Italian sausage
1 small onion, chopped (1/3 C.)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (7 1/2 oz) can tomatoes, cut up
1/2 of 6 oz can tomato paste (1/3 C)
2 tsp. dried oregano, crushed
1 1/2 tsp. dried basil, crushed
1 tsp. sugar
1/8 tsp. ground red pepper
1/4 C. chopped black olives
2 T. grated Parmesan cheese

(Dippers: breadsticks, breaded
mozzarella cheese sticks, green
sweet bell pepper sticks, carrots)

In large skillet cook sausage, onion &
garlic until meat is browned & onion
is tender; drain well. In 3 1/2 – 4 qt
crockpot combine sausage mixture,
tomato sauce, undrained tomatoes,
tomato paste, oregano, basil, sugar &
red pepper. Stir all ingredients together.
Cover & cook on Low 6-8 hours or High
3-4 hours. Stir in olives; sprinkle with
grated Parmesan cheese. Serve with
desired dippers.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe

Apple-Walnut Salad

1 large Granny Smith apple, cored , chopped
(1 3/4 C.)
1 large Gala apple, cored, chopped (1 3/4 C.)
1/2 C. golden raisins
1/2 C. plain yogurt
1 T. sugar
1 T. fresh orange juice
1/2 C. chopped walnuts, toasted

In large bowl, mix apples & raisins. In small
bowl, mix yogurt, sugar & orange juice; pour
over apple mixture & stir to coat. Serve or
refrigerate. Stir in walnuts just before
serving. Serves 7

NOTE: Orange-flavored or regular sweetened
dried cranberries can be substituted for raisins.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Crockpot Apple Oatmeal
(overnight recipe)

2 cored/peeled & sliced apples
1/4 C. brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
pinch salt
2 C. oatmeal
2 C. milk
2 C. water

Place apples, sugar, cinnamon & salt
in bottom of crockpot. Pour in oatmeal,
milk & water – DO NOT STIR. Cook,
overnight on Low 8-9 hours.

(recipe: Facebook)

Amish Cinnamon Bread

1 C. butter, softened
2 C. sugar
2 eggs
2 C. buttermilk
4 C. flour
2 tsp. baking soda

Cinnamon-Sugar Topping:

2/3 C. sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cream together butter, 2 C. sugar & eggs.
Add milk, flour & baking soda. Place 1/2
of batter (or a little less) into greased
loaf pans (1/4 in each pan). Mix, in
separate bowl, 2/3 C. sugar & cinnamon.
Sprinkle 3/4 cinnamon mixture on top of
the 1/2 batter in each pan. Add remaining
batter to pans; sprinkle with last of
cinnamon topping. Swirl with a knife.
Bake 45-50 minutes or until toothpick
inserted into center comes out clean. Cool
in pan 20 minutes before removing from

(recipe: Facebook)

Went to a very nice wedding Saturday – logistics of my time-usage were a bit ‘dicey’ – went to Grandson’s flag football game 1-2 p.m., raced home/changed clothes and drove to the wedding. I know I wrote about it last post – it was a VERY long drive involving a ‘Michigan Round – a – bout’ (that was crazy but I did it), and getting to church about 10 minutes LATE! The groom & bride’s Moms were both at the door (I’m friends with both of them) and they said: “No problem – go find a seat!”) Wedding was very nice, reception was at another location – Canterbury Village King’s Court Castle: very nice venue, very formal – great atmosphere. I was greatly surprised at the food – it was EXCELLENT! (Last wedding I went to 2 weeks ago there was almost NOTHING a diabetic could eat – tons of carbohydrates, some meat, NO VEGGIES!). This wedding definitely made up for that: tossed salad, steamed mixed vegs (green & yellow beans & carrots), mashed potatoes, noodles Alfredo, (some other pasta), beef rolled up, some sort of breaded chicken (ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL!) and rolls. Even the wedding cake was great! They had two different flavors: white cake with a rich chocolate ganash or carrot cake w/rich cream cheese frosting (I had that – BIG YUM!!!). The parents told the room: “Please feel free to be comfortable. Use this time like you were sitting down to dinner at our house – if you want seconds or thirds – GO AHEAD! Relax and enjoy yourselves, we are so very honored you are here to celebrate this wedding of our children with us.”  Great night (and I found my way home OK!).

Going to close for now as I have to grab my Knit Night stuff and get out the door!

Enjoy your evening and remember: Relax, stay warm and do something YOU like doing!




Published in: on October 15, 2013 at 4:17 pm  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , , ,

‘Nother Busy Week . . .


Once again life is squeezed between filled days; today is no different: Grandson’s flag football game 1-2 p.m., then rush home/change clothes/ and drive like a crazy woman to a wedding 20 miles away – making sure I get there BEFORE 3 p.m.! Then it’s drive from the wedding to the reception (here’s where it gets tricky – I’m not familiar with either the location of the wedding OR the reception – thank heavens for Mapquest!).Reception is 12 miles from wedding/church – I hope I can follow someone (just in case, I printed out the Mapquest directions!) As my husband would say: “You can get lost in a paper bag!” (that’s SO true!) I hate driving places I’m not familiar with; husband (in his older/retired state) doesn’t like going to ‘events’ (read that weddings/parties, etc) much, so I’m going ‘solo’ (again!). This is another young couple from our church – we know both families – ought to be fun!

Let’s see – what else is new? Not really a lot – just the same old RUNNING! It’s getting so that I almost need a Social Planner – almost every day has at least one ‘event’; mind you, I’m not complaining but it makes me long for days with NOTHING but ‘chilling’ in sight! I’m just very grateful that we have a car that runs well and is able to keep up with my constant driving; just cracked 50,000 miles on my van – we’ve had it about 2 years now (got it with 20,000 miles on it). Yes, I know – if I worked the mileage would have grown much quicker.


Jonny Apple-Seedy Crisp

6 medium apples, thinly sliced
1 1/2 C. quick-cooking rolled oats
1 1/2 C. brown sugar
1 C. flour
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
dash salt
1 C. butter or margarine, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Arrange apple slices in a greased
9 X 13 baking dish. Combine remaining
ingredients & spread over apples. Bake
35-40 minutes, until top is golden brown.

(recipe: Marys Recipe Exchange)

Tuna Cakes

2 (5 oz, ea) cans chunk light tuna in
water, drained & flaked
1 (6 oz) pkg. stuffing mix for chicken
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
3/4 C. water
1 carrot, shredded
1/3 C. mayonnaise
2 T. sweet pickle relish

Combine all ingredients; refrigerate
10 minutes. Heat large nonstick
skillet sprayed with nonstick cooking
spray on medium heat. Using a ice
cream scoop, make 1/3 C. portions of
tuna mixture, in batches, to skillet.
Flatten into patties with back of a
spatula. Cook 6 minutes or until golden
brown on both sides, carefully turning
patties after 3 minutes. Makes 6

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Hash Brown Quiche

1 (24 oz) bag frozen shredded hash brown potatoes
2 T. butter
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika, divided
1/4 tsp. seasoned salt
4 slices bacon
1/3 C. red onion, chopped
1/3 C. green pepper, chopped
5 eggs
1 1/3 C. Half & Half
1 C. sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.

Place bag of hash browns in microwave for
a few minutes to begin to defrost. Heat large,
deep skillet over medium high heat. Add 2 T.
butter & melt. Add potatoes, 1/4 tsp. smoked
paprika & 1/4 tsp. seasoned salt, add salt &
pepper, to taste; allow potatoes to cook through.
Make sure they are golden brown & crisp. In
separate skillet, fry bacon over medium high heat.
When cooked, place on paper-towel covered plate.
Discard all but 1 tsp. bacon grease from pan. Add
green pepper & red onion to skillet; saute over
medium high heat, stirring occasionally until tender.
Using a deep 9 inch pie plate, pour cooked hash
browns into pan, press down on bottom & up sides.
(you can use the bottom of a measuring cup for this)
In medium sized mixing bowl place 5 eggs & Half & Half;
whisk together with a fork. Crumble bacon & add to eggs.
Add sauteed green pepper & onion, 1/4 tsp. smoked
paprika, salt & pepper, 1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese; stir
to incorporate then pour into pie plate over potatoes.
Bake 45-55 minutes until center is set & top is golden.
Allow to sit 10 minutes, then serve. Serves 8


Crushed Cheese Cracker Pork

1 lb. pork tenderloin
1 egg, beaten
1 t. steak sauce
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 C. cheese crackers, finely crushed
2 t. vegetable oil, divided

Combine egg, steak sauce & garlic powder in
shallow dish. Place crushed crackers in another
shallow dish. Cut tenderloin crosswise into 1/2
inch thick slices; pound or flatten with heal of
your hand to 1/4 inch thickness. Dip each slice
first into egg mixture, then cracker crumbs, turning
to coat. Heat 1 T. oil in large nonstick skillet over
medium heat until hot. Add half of pork slices & cook
4-5 minutes per side or, until browned. Repeat with
remaining oil & pork slices. Serves 4

(recipe: National Pork Board)

(don’t know what happened to the font size on the recipe below-it’s acting goofy and I’m afraid if I try to change it it will totally get really illegible- sorry)

Creamy Cheesy Scalloped Cabbage

1 small head green cabbage
2 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 1/2 C. medium white sauce (recipe below)
1/2 –  3/4 C. fine bread crumbs, buttered
1/2 tsp. salt
1 T. butter

White Sauce:

3 T. butter
3 T. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 C. milk

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Cut cabbage into wedges; cook,
uncovered, until tender (about 25 minutes). Add
salt to water just before cooking is completed; drain
cabbage, add butter.

White Sauce:

In saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Add flour &
salt; stir to combine. Gradually add milk, stirring
constantly until thickened. Layer cabbage, cheese & white sauce in 2 1/2 Qt. casserole dish; repeat layers. Top with buttered bread crumbs. Bake 25 minutes or until bread crumbs are browned. Serves 6-8.


Sweet BBQ Chicken Dip

2 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese, softened
3 C. shredded cooked chicken
3/4 C. jellied cranberry sauce
3/4 C. chili sauce
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 T. cider vinegar
1 T. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 1/2 C. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 C. sliced green onions
assorted salted crackers (for dipping)

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spread cream cheese into bottom of
9 X 13 baking dish. Stir together chicken,
cranberry sauce, chili sauce, Worcestershire
sauce, vinegar, mustard & red pepper flakes
in medium bowl. Spoon mixture over cream
cheese in baking dish; sprinkle with cheese.
Bake 20-30 minutes or until heated through.
Sprinkle with onions & serve with crackers
for dipping. Makes 16 servings.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Pumpkin Fudge

2 T. butter
2 1/2 C. granulated sugar
2/3 C. evaporated milk
1 C. white chocolate chips
7 oz. marshmallow creme
3/4 C. canned pumpkin
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla

Line a 9 X 9 baking pan with aluminum
foil; set aside. In a 3 Qt. saucepan, heat
milk & sugar over medium heat; bring to
a boil, stirring occasionally with a wooden
spoon. Mix in pumpkin puree & cinnamon;
bring back to a boil. Stir in marshmallow
creme & butter. Bring to a rolling boil. Cook,
stirring occasionally, for 18 minutes. Remove
from heat; add choc. chips & vanilla; stir until
creamy & all chips are melted. Pour into
prepared pan & let cool. Remove from pan,
& cut into squares. Store in cool, dry place.

(recipe: Mary Free-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Creamed Corn

1/2 large onion, finely chopped
2 T. butter
8 ears corn, husks & silks removed
1 tsp. sugar
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 C. heavy cream
coarse salt & freshly ground pepper

In large saucepan, melt 1 T. butter on
medium heat. Add onions; cook 2-3
minutes until clear. While onion is
cooking, remove kernels from corn cob.
Stand a corn cob vertically over a large,
shallow pan (like a roasting pan). Using
a sharp knife, use long, downward
strokes of the knife to remove the
kernels from the cob. Use the edge of a
spoon to scrape the sides of the cob to
remove any remaining pulp. Add corn to
onions & butter in saucepan. Add 2/3 C.
water & remaining butter; bring to a simmer.
Reduce heat & cover; cook 10-15 minutes
until corn is tender. Add sugar, nutmeg &
cream to corn. Cook, uncovered, 5-6 minutes
stirring occasionally. Add salt & pepper, to taste.
Serves 6

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

No-Bake Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies

1 1/2 cups white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup butter
2/3 cup milk
1 (3.4 oz) box instant pumpkin spice pudding mix (if you can’t find sub vanilla pudding & 1 T. pumpkin pie spice)
3 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp vanilla extract

In a saucepan, combine sugars, butter and milk. Bring to a boil. Boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat and add in the pudding mix, stirring to combine completely. Add in pumpkin pie spice, vanilla and oats. Stir to combine and let stand for 5 minutes. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto waxed paper, and allow to cool completely. Store in airtight container.
Freezing Directions:

Follow directions above. When completely cool, transfer to gallon sized freezer storage bag.
Servings: 36 cookies

(recipe: Facebook)

How is your weather lately? Our’s is very much Fall-like BUT it’s been really sunny and warm! (right now would not be a good example: it’s 10:25 a.m. and it’s only 59 degrees out, BUT it should warm up later to 78 degrees! YAY!)

Gas Prices? Our’s have been a bit ‘strange’ – they were in the $3.49/9, then dropped to $3.44/9 – last night I saw they’d dropped further to around $3.39/9 – interesting! I’m not complaining! (especially with all the driving I have to do today!)

Health-wise, I’m doing fine. Been waiting to see how I’d feel after going off the cancer drug – so far it’s been 1 week plus 1 day – the joint pain is slowly decreasing (that’s a good thing!). Still have the occasional hot flash but that could just be hormonal; mood swings – haven’t noticed any. I’ll just be glad if I can sit down then get up and not sound like I’m 90 yrs old, grunting & groaning and barely able to make my feet & legs move at all – that would be a great thing! Even at 65 I still (mentally) feel a lot younger THEREFORE I’ve determined I’m going to still ACT a whole lot younger! (Yes, for those who know me personally – that means I’ll still be JUST as crazy/silly, etc. as I’ve ever been!)

Hope you’re having a GREAT day!



Another GOOD Day!

dancing woman

Doing another “Happy Dance”!!!

Just got back from my first visit to a Urologist (thought to have possible kidney stones); turns out I was RIGHT! I had suspected that the entire problem of reoccurring infections was all due to the fact that I don’t drink enough liquids! I’ve never been one for liking to drink almost anything; coffee (1-2 cups a day, at most), maybe a cup of water in between, but that’s about it for liquids – NOT GOOD! Add to that my (former) cancer drug also dries you out and you’re a prime candidate for urinary tract infections. The odd thing to me is: why did I not get them sooner? (I’d been on the anti-estrogen/cancer drug for 1 1/2 YEARS!) Not complaining, tho’ –  the urologist said to take cranberry tablets, add lactobacillis tabs & water to my daily regimen and “see you in 6 months”! YAY! No big ultrasounds/kidney tests, etc. like I was expecting! Back in June my (new) cancer doctor had sent me for several tests, one being an ultrasound of my stomach area; unbeknownst to me, that also included a complete report on my kidneys. The urologist said I’m doing good! YAY! FEELIN’ GOOD, knowing I’m reducing the number of medicines/doctors/tests – that’s great!

How are your gas prices lately? Ours are steadily going DOWN! I filled up today at $3.32/9 – that’s the lowest I’ve seen in many years!!!

Report on Special Needs Group’s Harvest Party: I think I wrote before that the church we meet at decided to honor our group by throwing a Harvest Party for them, complete with food, games, prizes, etc. – that was last Friday. They did a great job of it – lots of food, games, prizes and some new people, too. The kids had a ball – and Lois & I (we’re the ones in charge of the group) had a good time ‘mingling’ – we so very rarely get to do that. I came home totally exhausted after 3 hours on my feet, but happy it all came together so well. The lady who arranged it is already excited about throwing a Hawaiian Luau in June for the kids!


LOTS of recipes coming in – so many that I haven’t had time to process all of them!


Butter Tart Squares


1 C. flour
1/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. butter (room temp, NOT melted)


2 T. butter, melted
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 C. brown sugar
2 T. flour
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. baking powder
pinch salt
1 C. raisins (optional)
1 C. chopped pecans (optional)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

In a bowl, combine flour & sugar;
cut in butter until crumbly. Press
into 9 X i greased pan. Bake 15

In a separate bowl, mix butter &
eggs; blend in sugar, flour, baking
powder, vanilla & salt. Stir in
raisins & pecans, if using. Pour
this over baked base. Bake 20-25
minutes, or until top springs back
when touched lightly. Let cool on
wire rack before cutting into squares.
Makes 12-18 servings.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe

Texas Jalapeno Spread

2 jalapeno peppers, seeded/finely chopped
3 green bell peppers, seeded/finely chopped
1 1/2 C. white vinegar, divided
6 1/2 C. sugar
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 (6 oz) pkg. liquid fruit pectin

cream cheese & crackers, for serving

In blender, combine jalapeno pepper,
green peppers & 3/4 C. vinegar; process
until pureed. Pour into large saucepan &
add sugar, 3/4 C. vinegar & cayenne pepper.
Bring mixture to boil & stir constantly.
Stir in fruit pectin & boil 1 minute longer,
stirring constantly. Remove from heat, skim
off foam & pour into sterilized jars. Makes
3 (1/2 pint) jars

To serve: spread cream cheese on crackers &
top with jalapeno spread.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

German Reuben Casserole

3 medium potatoes, cooked
1 (16 oz) can sauerkraut, rinsed
& drained
1/2 lb. smoked sausage/Polish
kielbasa, thinly sliced (pre-cooked)
1/2 C. Thousand Island salad dressing
2 T. chopped parsley
3/4 C. shredded Swiss cheese
1/2 green bell pepper, cut into strips,
about 1/3 C.

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Pare & cube potatoes; set aside.
Combine sauerkraut, potatoes ,
sausage, dressing & parsley. Spoon
into greased 10 X 6 glass baking dish.
Bake 25-30 minutes. Sprinkle top with
cheese & green pepper strips; bake
5 minutes more. Makes 5 servings

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Tex-Mex Cheese Dip

1 1/2 lb. lean ground beef, chicken or turkey
1 C. chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 (12 oz) jar chunky salsa
1 (16 oz) pkg. cheese spread with
jalapeno peppers, shredded

tortilla or corn chips, for dipping

In skillet, cook beef/chicken/turkey, onion &
garlic until meat is brown; drain well. Transfer
meat mixture to 3 1/2 – 4 qt. crockpot. Stir in
cumin, coriander & salsa. Cover & cook on
Low 3-4 hours or High 1 1/2 – 2 hours until
heated through. Stir in cheese; cover &
cook on High 5-10 minutes or until cheese
melts. Makes 6 cups

Dip may be kept warm in crockpot up to 2 hours
on low setting

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Crockpot Apple Crisp

5 medium tart apples
1/2 C. granulated sugar
1/2 C. brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 C. butter, melted
1 box “Betty Crocker” Super Moist yellow cake mix

Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick spray.
In large bowl toss apples, granulated sugar, brown
sugar & cinnamon; add to crockpot. In medium bowl,
mix melted butter & dry cake mix; sprinkle on top of
apples. Cover & cook on High 2-3 hours or until apples
are soft, removing cover for last 30 minutes of cooking.
Serves 6

NOTE: You can place 3-4 paper towels under the lid of
the crockpot to absorb some of the moisture while cooking;
this will keep the topping ‘crisp’.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Slowcooker Corn Chowder

3 C. corn kernels 2- (16 oz,ea) cans
2 medium potatoes
1 onion, finely chopped
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 C. chicken broth
2 C. milk
1/4 C. margarine
ground mace

Combine corn, potatoes, onion, seas. salt,
pepper & broth in slowcooker. Cover & cook
on Low 7-9 hours. Pour into blender or food
processor; puree until smooth. Cover &
refrigerate overnight. Pour into slowcooker,
stir in milk & margarine. Cover & cook on
High 1 hour. Pour hot soup & sprinkle bowl
tops with ground mace.

(recipe: Francine-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Lemon, Garlic & Basil Shrimp Skewers

1/4 C. lemon juice
2 T. olive oil
1 T. honey mustard
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 tsp. finely grated lemon peel
1 lb. peeled, extra-large shrimp
6 basil leaves, cut into julienne strips

In medium bowl, whisk lemon juice with
oil, mustard, garlic & lemon peel. Add shrimp
& stir to coat. Marinate, covered & refrigerated,
45 minutes.

Grease grill & preheat to High heat.
Thread shrimp onto skewers; sprinkle both
sides lightly with salt. Place on grill & cook
until shrimp are pink, about 1 1/2 – 2 minutes
per side. Remove, place on a platter & sprinkle
with julienned basil strips. Makes 4 servings

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Cannoli Bites

Cannoli cups:

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting work surface
2 1/2 Tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp cocoa powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 large egg white
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp apple juice or grape juice
2 Tbsp white wine vinegar (red wine vinegar
or plain white vinegar )
Vegetable oil cooking spray

Cannoli Filling

12 oz whole milk Ricotta cheese, strained
8 oz Mascarpone cheese
1/2 cup powdered sugar*
1/3 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
powdered sugar, for dusting (optional)

Optional toppings:
Melted chocolate, chopped pistachios, sprinkles,
toasted sweetened coconut

For the cannoli cups:

Add flour, granulated sugar, cocoa powder, cinnamon
and salt to a food processor and pulse until blended.
Pour in melted butter and pulse until well combined
then add egg white and pulse until blended. In a bowl
combine juice and vinegar, with processor running
slowly pour in juice mixture and pulse just until mixture
begins to come together. Divide dough into two pieces,
shape into balls and transfer to a resealable bag. Chill in
refrigerator 30 minutes – 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees during last 10 minutes of

Prepare filling.
In a mixing bowl, using a rubber or silicone spatula, blend
together Ricotta and Mascarpone cheese while running and
pressing mixture along bottom of bowl to remove any lumps.
Fold in powdered sugar. Cover and chill 30 minutes (or until
ready to use). Roll each chilled dough out on a lightly floured
surface (dust top with flour too) into a 14-inch circle, to about
an 1/8-inch thickness. Cut into circles using a 2 1/2-inch round
biscuit cutter. Transfer rounds to an ungreased mini muffin tin,
pressing evenly into sides and bottom of muffin well. Spray tops
evenly with vegetable oil spray. Bake in preheated oven 11 – 13
minutes until lightly golden (I liked these best crisp). Remove from
oven and transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely. Once
cool dip tops in chocolate if desired then into coating if using
(such as pistachios) and allow chocolate to set. Remove cannoli
filling from refrigerator, transfer to a piping bag fitted with a tip
or you can use a large resealable bag and cut the tip of the end).
Pipe filling into cups and sprinkle with chocolate chips and dust
with powdered sugar. For best results serve within 2 hours.
Store in refrigerator.
*You can add 2 Tbsp more if you’d like it a little sweeter.

(recipe: Pinterest)

It’s been a busy weekend with going to grandson’s flag football game (they lost), attending a retirement party for husband’s cousin who’s going to move to Hawaii!, and a few other activities. I’m grateful that now (as far as I know – youngest has today off, so my ‘leisure’ could change, since he doesn’t have a car) – I’m free to write a blog, peruse the recipes (and there are TONS!) and maybe knit or crochet a bit. Worked on a chemo cap (about 1/2 done – it’s been quite a while since I’ve done that), still working on the really easy crocheted baby blanket (since it’s so easy, I tend to get bored with it and not work on it – not a good thing . . . sigh) and am sort of eagerly looking for the next ‘fun’ knit project. IF you’re a knitter or crocheter, you KNOW what I mean: you always have more than one project going at a time.

Youngest is now pursuing purchasing a 1997 pick up truck; needs new brakes which the owner is going to change out (he’s a mechanic) and then son will probably purchase in 2 weeks (has to wait to earn enough $$$ to buy it). That will FREE ME UP some (I hope) to be able to stay home a bit. As it is now, I drive him to & from work every day and sometimes to friends or the mall (let’s rephrase that: HE drives TO work, I drive home. I drive to pick him up, HE drives home or to the mall, etc.) I’ve been diligent to make sure he continues driving and does not lose his driving ‘skills’, since he hadn’t had his license very long before getting in the accident that totaled his first car. Ah, life and it’s many ‘stages’: infancy, school, out of school, driving/job, etc. I’m still trying to absorb the idea that I’m now considered a SENIOR CITIZEN! I get the words mixed up (at doctor’s offices) between MediCARE and Medicaid – I have CARE, not caid. (Sigh)  Gettin’ old ain’t fun, for sure! I’m just VERY grateful I’m in as good a health as I am, for 65!

Well friends, this post is long enough – time to wrap it up. Hope you are enjoying this Fall weather. Today it’s 54 degrees, gloomy and wet (rained overnight) – definitely SWEATER weather, for sure! Bundle up, rest a bit and enjoy a ‘hot beverage’!



PS: Almost forgot – decided to try an experiment the other day: our yard has two hickory nut trees and this year has been a bumper crop of them – our driveway is loaded! I vaguely remember, as a small child, going with my babysitter for a walk down our road with buckets hanging around our necks. Our goal: to fill them with hickory nuts! For fun, I brought out the nut cracker & nut pick and gathered a few to see if I remembered how they taste. Well, since we do not spray our trees, I anticipated lots of bugs. Husband told me that’s what the hard bright green outer shell was for: to keep the bugs out! I gathered about 9 of them and, after cracking at least 6, finally found one that wasn’t already dried up! I was able to eat 3 – yep, they taste mildly like walnuts. (Husband had to do his computer search: they are in the walnut family). I even did the experiment with our grandson – he wasn’t that interested but ate 2, just to amuse me (sigh). All I can say is: those little buggers sure take a LOT of work to get that teeny, tiny meat out! (they look just like miniature walnuts inside, hence the need for a nut pick – it’s really hard getting their meat out!). Think I’ll stick to walnuts – much less work!