First November Monday


Hello! How’s your day going? Mine has progressed nicely; managed to get some chores (that I’d put off) finished – like doing & folding laundry, checking the freezer for ‘what to bring up’, unloading/loading the dishwasher – stuff like that. Woke up to middle son (7: 45 a.m.) faxing his work papers in the kitchen – nothing like the ‘lovely’ sounds of a VERY LOUD fax machine to wake you right up!  Why, you ask, was he doing this so very early? He has to have his reports in BEFORE 8 a.m. Mondays – sigh. Went for a quick doctor’s visit then stopped at the local Salvation Army in that area. I’d just come in the door and was looking over their ‘board’ (they post, each day, which color tags are ‘marked down’) when I thought I heard my oldest son’s voice. Look over at the check out area and, sure enough – it’s him! He’d stopped in to pick up a few hoodies for our grandson; he told me grandson is growing like a weed. “He put a hoodie on this morning and the bottom of it was to his waist!” Glad good old Salv. Army comes to the rescue! I really love this location – it’s in a little bit of an ‘up scale’ area, about 1/2 hour from our house, the clothes are very nice and barely worn. I ended up coming home with 3 sweater tops and 3 turtle neck tops for under sweaters or suit coats – I was happy! OH! Forgot to mention – when I came in the door a lady met me with a green paper ticket; it appears any shoppers coming in between 9 and 10 a.m. today got them – they were good for 50% off ALL items purchased today! Pretty neat, eh? Who needs a sale when you’ve got that idea?!  Glad to see oldest son (he’ll be dropping off grandson bright & early 10:30 tomorrow – it seems there’s no school – some sort of teacher thing. Great grandma (on the other side) is going on a ‘gambling junket’ with some of her friends, so we’re watching him – ALL DAY until around 4 p.m. when the other grandma picks him up. Ought to be a LONG, busy day for me!!!

Weather-wise, it’s typical Fall in Michigan: lots of leaves changing colors and dropping to the ground – our front yard is full of them. Yesterday we got in the car to drive to church and the thermometer said: 27 degrees F.  BRRrrrr!!! Right now it’s a little after 4 p.m. and 49 degrees F.  we’re  moving into colder weather, for sure. I’m still holding out for some Indian Summer! For those of you not familiar with that term, we have an interesting ‘happening’ here – sometimes. Sometime between the beginning of the cold weather and before it really gets cold we (sometimes – not every year – it’s unpredictable) will get 1-3 (rarely more than that) days of unseasonably WARM weather – we’re talking t-shirts & shorts weather – in the 70’s! I LOVE that (if we get it); it doesn’t last long but it always buoys up my spirits for a short while (I don’t like cold weather).

Recipes? Yesterday a friend brought in a tasty treat for our Sunday School snack: Pumpkin Pecan Crunch. It’s a ‘not very sweet’ dessert – I liked it!


Pumpkin Pecan Crunch

1 box yellow cake mix
1 (15 oz) can pure pumpkin
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
3 eggs
1/2 C. sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1 C. melted butter (or margarine)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mix pumpkin, milk, eggs, sugar, cinnamon
& salt in medium bowl. Spray a 9 X 13 pan
with nonstick spray. Pour mixture into pan.
Sprinkle entire box of dry cake mix over
mixture – evenly. Sprinkle top with chopped
nuts. Pour melted butter over top & bake
55 minutes.

Oven Frito Pie!

1 lb. lean ground beef
1 can (16 oz) chili beans
1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce
1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes
1 envelope low sodium taco seasoning
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (2% fat kind)
3 1/2 cups corn chips (Fritos)
1 1/4 cup fat free sour cream

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cook ground beef until meat is browned; drain.
Stir in beans, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes,
taco seasoning mix and 1/4 c. of cheese. Sprinkle
1 Cup corn chips in bottom of 8×8 baking dish;
cover with chili. Bake 20 minutes. Spread sour
cream over chili. Top with remaining corn chips
and cheese. Bake 4-5 minutes longer.

(recipe: Facebook)

Impossible Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup evaporated milk
2/3 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line 12 cup muffin tin with silicone liners,
foil liners sprayed with cooking spray or just
spray the cups with cooking spray. Either of
these three methods will make it easy to take
the cupcake out after cooked. Paper liners
make it difficult to remove the cupcakes.

Mix pumpkin, sugar, brown sugar, eggs,
vanilla extract and milk. Add the flour, pumpkin
spice, salt, baking powder and baking soda to the
mixture. Fill each muffin cup with 1/3 cup of the
mixture. Bake twenty minutes and let cool
twenty minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan
and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. Top with
whipped cream and sprinkle more pumpkin pie
spice on top and serve. Makes 12 cupcakes.

(recipe: Facebook)

Light & Delicious Spaghetti Squash

2 T. olive oil
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 large tomato
4 C. baby spinach leaves
2 C. spaghetti squash
2 dashes salt & pepper

Cook spaghetti squash:
Make several holes in the squash using
a fork, then place in microwave for about
10-12 minutes (about 4-5 min. per pound).
Allow to cool for several minutes. Remove
from microwave; cut open lengthwise. Using a
fork, scrape out contents (it will be stringy)
into a bowl & set aside. In large skillet, heat
oil over medium heat; add garlic & cook until
just turning brown. Add tomato; sprinkle with
a bit of salt. Top with spinach leaves; cover &
cook about 2 minutes (spinach will cook &
reduce down.) Uncover, break up spinach with
wooden spoon; it will start to clump together
once cooked. Add spaghetti squash a little at a
time & stir in. Sprinkle with salt & pepper & serve.
Serves 2-3

(recipe: Julia –

Crusty Bread

3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon Instant or Rapid-rise yeast
1 1/2 cups water

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour,
salt and yeast. Add water and mix until a
shaggy mixture forms. Cover bowl with
plastic wrap and set aside for 12 – 18 hours.
Overnight works great.

Heat oven to 450 degrees.
Place a cast iron pot with a lid in the oven
and heat the pot for 30 minutes. Meanwhile,
pour dough onto a heavily floured surface and
shape into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and
let set while the pot is heating. Remove hot pot
from the oven and drop in the dough. Cover and
return to oven for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes
remove the lid and bake an additional 15 minutes.
Remove bread from oven and place on a cooling
rack to cool.

(recipe: Facebook)

Cheeseburger in Paradise
by Jimmy Buffett

1 lb lean ground beef
1 large onion (chopped)
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
dash Worcester sauce
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1 cup milk
1/2 cup Bisquick mix
2 eggs

Heat oven to 400€™°F.
Spray a 9 inch pie plate with non-stick
cooking spray. Cook beef and chopped
onion in a skillet over medium about 10
minutes or until beef is brown. Drain excess fat.
Stir in salt, garlic powder and Worcester sauce
and then spread in pie plate. Next, sprinkle
shredded cheese on top of beef. In a small bowl,
whisk together milk, eggs and Bisquick. Make
sure you try to get as many lumps out as you can.
Pour over meat mixture. Bake 25 minutes or
until a knife comes out clean.
Serves 4-5.

(recipe: Facebook)

Bacon-wrapped Cream Cheese Stuffed
Chicken Breasts
(makes one – double or triple, if desired)

1 boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 T. cream cheese
1 T. green onion, chopped
2 slices bacon, partially cooked

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Pound out chicken breast to about 1/4″ thick.
Mix together cream cheese & onions; spread
mixture over 1 side of chicken breast. Roll up
to conceal cream cheese. Wrap partially cooked
bacon slice around breast and secure with tooth
pick. Place on baking sheet and bake 30 minutes,
then broil about 5 minutes to crisp-up the bacon.

(recipe: Facebook)

Cinnamon Roll Cake

3 C. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 c. sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 C. milk
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. butter, melted

1 C. butter, softened
1 c. brown sugar
2 T. flour
1 T. cinnamon

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mix everything for cake except butter.
Slowly stir in melted butter & pour into
greased 9 X 13 pan.
Mix all topping ingredients together
until well combined. Drop evenly over
batter & swirl with a knife.

Bake 28-32 minutes.

2 C. powdered sugar
5 T. milk
1 tsp. vanilla

While cake is still warm, stir together
glaze ingredients and drizzle glaze
over cake.

(recipe: Facebook)

Crockpot Ranch Pork Chops

pkg. boneless pork chops
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 pkt. dry Ranch salad dressing

Layer pork chops in bottom of crockpot.
Add soup then sprinkle dry salad dressing
over all. Cover & cook on High 4 hours or
Low 6 hours.
Pork chops come out very tender & flavorful;
juices make a nice gravy for mashed potatoes

(recipe: Facebook)

Sweet ‘n Sour Green Beans

1 quart cooked green beans, fresh or frozen
1 medium onion, chopped
8 slices bacon, fried crisp & crumbled
1/2 C. vinegar
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 C. bacon grease

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place layer of cooked beans in a slightly
greased, flat casserole. Add a layer of
onion & bacon; repeat layers. Pour sauce
made of vinegar, sugar & bacon grease over
casserole. Cook, uncovered, 30 minutes, then
cover & cook an additional 30 minutes. Makes
8 servings.

Faster Version:
For each 10 oz pkg. frozen French-style beans,
cook 3-4 slices bacon until crisp. Saute a small
chopped onion in bacon drippings. Add 1/4 C.
vinegar & 1/4 C. sugar & pkg. green beans.
Separate frozen beans with a fork; cook,
covered, 5 minutes then uncovered over high
heat until all liquid is gone (about 5 more minutes).

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Pumpkin Pillows

12 caramels
1 tsp. water
1/2 c. sour cream
1 tsp. ground cinnamon, divided
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. canned pumpkin
1 T. brown sugar
1 tsp. flour
1/4 tsp. orange zest
20 won ton wrappers
1 egg white, slightly beaten
2 C. oil
1 T. powdered sugar

Microwave caramels & water in medium
microwaveable bowl on High 30 seconds; stir
until caramels are completely melted. Cool 2
minutes; stir in sour cream & 1/2 tsp. cinnamon.
Refrigerate until ready to use.
Whisk cream cheese, pumpkin, brown sugar, flour,
zest & remaining cinnamon until well blended.
Spoon about 2 tsp. onto center of each won ton
wrapper. Moisten edges with egg white; fold
diagonally, in half. Pinch edges together tightly
to seal. Heat oil in large saucepan on medium-high
heat. Add won tons, in batches; cook 2-3 minutes
or until evenly browned. Drain. Cool slightly; sprinkle
with powdered sugar. Serve with heated caramel
sauce. Makes 20 servings.

NOTE: you can make these ahead & freeze up to
2 months. When ready to reheat, place frozen
won tons on baking sheet (no need to thaw first)
Bake 350 degrees 15 minutes or until heated

(recipe: Kraft foods)

I tell you what – my recipe collection is OVER-FLOWING with desserts! Hope you don’t mind more pumpkin recipes – I figure Thanksgiving is on it’s way soon so you might be able to use some of these for your holiday. Hard to believe we’re towards the ‘end of the year’ already!

Youngest son’s truck is ONE WEEK old (here) today – still running great. I actually LIKE the fact that it makes a bit of noise when he’s driving it – that way, I can hear him drive in the driveway at night! He’s happy with it and I’m VERY happy to have some FREE time when I can actually plan out MY day without arranging it around HIS work schedule! Life is good!

Hope you’re enjoying your day (actually your Daylight Savings Day) – did you remember to set your clock BACK an hour? I usually waste my ‘extra’ hour watching TV or doing something silly instead of just going to bed and getting an extra hour’s sleep – hey, life’s short! Eat Dessert First!

 My parting shot for the day!




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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. It took me until Sunday night to start changing clocks.

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