I Love YouTube!


Yep, it’s STILL really cold!

Remember yesterday I mentioned having an abundance of baby yarn all looking almost the same (white with little blue/pink/green flecks in it)? Got the inspiration last night to do another baby blanket/afghan using that but doing it in my dear friend Mary’s (Momma) pattern – commonly called: Diagonal Box Stitch (crochet).

Diagonal-Box-Stitch-SquareNot the best photo of it, but you get the idea: basically it’s little squares that are going in two directions (looks complicated, but once you figure it out, it’s not!). I haven’t worked this pattern since way, WAAAAAAY back when I used to work all-nights at the phone company and Mary was my boss (we’re talking over 35 years!). It’s one of those patterns that you start at one corner and increase until you get it as wide as you want, then decrease back down to one square (all I remember is the ‘decrease’ part was a little hard to get the hang of). ENTER: YouTube! Thank heavens for YouTube videos that show you, step-by-step, exactly how to do various things! I had printed out the on-paper directions for this pattern and got to about Set # 3 before going: “Huh? What?” so YouTube was just what I needed! Now I’m doing baby hats and this afghan – keeps me out of trouble!

Had to run a little errand today and stopped at Kroger’s for a few items. Had a discussion with oldest son (who’s the chef) on buying various mixtures of hummus when he piped up and said: “Mom – WHY are you BUYING hummus when it’s SO EASY to make – and MUCH cheaper!” We talked (I didn’t tell him I tried doing that waaay back before he was born). While shopping I thought: “OK, guess I’ll give it another try” – middle son is a hummus ‘hound’ and devours whatever is in the fridge (used to be it was JUST MY hummus – no one else touched it). Picked up 4 cans chick peas (son makes his with BAGS of chick peas – but then, he’s cooking for a restaurant), and went looking for Tahini (ground sesame seed paste). Took me a while but finally found a jar (probably about 12 oz, just guessing) – NO price on bottle or shelf – stuck it in the cart. Got to check out and asked her to scan the price of that bottle: $6.99 – let’s just say I asked her to return it, no sale (and gave her the 4 cans of chick peas, too). Granted, you only need a LITTLE tahini to make a batch, but this bottle would have made TONS of batches – and I’m not into doing that (not sure how long it would stay ‘good’, either, once opened, even IF refrigerated). I guess I’ll just stick with buying my already-made hummus and be happy (for now, any way!).


Brownie Cookies

2/3 C. vegetable shortening (Crisco)
1 1/2 C. light brown sugar, packed
1 T. water
1 tsp. vanilla
2 large eggs
1 1/2 C. flour
1/3 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 (12 oz) pkg. semi-sweet chocolate

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
In large mixing bowl, combine shortening,
sugar, water & vanilla; blend well. Add eggs
& beat just until combined. In separate bowl,
combine flour, cocoa, baking soda & salt.
Gradually add dry ingredients to shortening
mixture on low speed. Add chocolate chips &
mix to combine. Drop dough by rounded
tablespoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheet.
Bake 8-9 minutes or until cookies are set (they
will be soft, but not gooey). Remove cookies from
oven & let cool on sheet for a few minutes, then
remove to cooling rack. Makes 36 cookies.

(recipe: Peg- Marys Recipe Exchange)

Beef Lo Mein

1 (8 oz) pkg. cooked spaghetti
1/4 C. soy sauce, divided
2 tsp. grated fresh ginger, divided
1 lb. lean flank steak, cut into 1″ slices
1 T. sesame oil
1 C. fresh snow pea pods, trimmed
1 C. broccoli florets
1 C. shredded carrots
2 green onions, chopped
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 T. sesame seeds, toasted

Bring salted water to boil in large pot
& cook spaghetti accordg to pkg. directions.
Combine 2 T. soy sauce & 1 tsp. ginger; toss
over steak. Heat sesame oil over medium-
high heat in a wok or large nonstick skillet.
Add steak & stir-fry 4 minutes on each side
or until browned; drain & remove from pan.
Stir-fry snow pea pods & next 5 ingredients
in pan 2 minutes. Stir in remaining soy sauce,
ginger, steak & cooked noodles. Remove from
heat & sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.
Serve immediately. Serves 4

NOTE: If you have time, you can sprinkle the
soy sauce & ginger over the steak & let it set
for several hours

(recipe: laurasleanbeef.com)

Crockpot Cheese & Tortellini Soup

1 lb. pork sausage, cooked & drained
1 (19 oz) pkg. frozen cheese tortellini
1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen spinach
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans diced tomatoes
2 (15 oz, ea) cans chicken broth
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, cubed

Add all ingredients to crockpot. Cook,
on Low, 5 hours, stirring at least twice.
Serves 6-8

(recipe: crockpot ladies.com)

Savory Chicken Breasts

4 chicken breast halves
ground black pepper, to taste
4 slices Swiss cheese
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/4 C. milk
1 C. dry bread crumbs
3 T. butter, melted (or margarine)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place chicken in 9 X 13 baking pan.
Season with pepper; top each breast
with a slice of cheese. Mix together
soup & milk; pour over chicken. Sprinkle
bread crumbs on top & drizzle with
melted butter. Bake, covered, 30 minutes.
Uncover & bake for another 20 minutes
or until golden brown. Serves 4.

(recipe: Mary Free-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Black Bean Salad

1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed & drained
1 1/2 C. frozen corn, defrosted (or fresh corn-
parboiled, drained & cooled)
1/2 C. green onions, chopped
2 fresh jalapeno peppers, seeded & minced
or whole pickled, minced (not seeded)
3 fresh plum tomatoes, seeded & chopped
1 avocado, peeled, seeded & cut into chunks
1/2 C. fresh chopped cilantro
1/4 C. fresh chopped basil
2 T. lime juice (about 1 lime)
1 T. olive oil
1/2 -1 tsp. sugar (to taste)
salt & pepper, to taste

In large bowl, combine beans, corn, onions,
jalapeno, tomatoes, avocado, cilantro, basil,
lime juice & olive oil. Add sugar, salt & pepper,
to taste. Chill before serving. Serves 6-8

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)


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 Tbsp. flour
1 Tbsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mix everything together except butter.
Slowly stir in melted butter and pour
into a greased 9×13 pan.
For the topping, mix all the ingredients
together until well combined. Drop
evenly over the batter and swirl with a
knife. Bake 28-32 minutes.

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

While warm drizzle glaze over the cake.

(recipe: Facebook)

Peanut Dressing
(serve as a sauce, dip or salad

1/4 C. peanut butter
2 C. orange-pineapple juice, heated
4 T. soy sauce
1 T. grated fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 T. chopped green onions

Place peanut butter & 1/4 C. orange-
pineapple juice in medium bowl & stir
to combine. Add rest of juice & all
remaining ingredients; whisk together.

(recipe: Marys Recipe Exchange)

Crockpot Jambalaya

12 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 1/2 C. chopped green pepper
1 medium onion, chopped
2 celery ribs, sliced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 (14 oz) can whole tomatoes
1/3 C. tomato paste
1 (10.5 oz) can beef broth
1 T. parsley
1 1/2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. Tabasco sauce
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1 lb. shrimp, shelled & deveined
3 C. cooked rice

Cut chicken into 1 inch pieces. Place all
ingredients (except shrimp & rice) in crockpot.
Cover & cook on Low 8 hours. Add shrimp
last 20 minutes of cooking. Stir in rice before
serving. Serves 6

(recipe: msclassylady-Slowcooker digest)


Taco Meatloaf

2 lb. ground beef
1 egg
1/2 C. sour cream
1/3 C. salsa
3-4 T. taco seasoning mix
salt, to taste
1 C. crushed tortilla chips
1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
sliced tomato
chopped black olives
chopped green onion
shredded lettuce

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl, whisk egg & add all
ingredients except beef; mix well.
Add ground beef; mix well. Shape
into loaf in baking dish. Bake
60-70 minutes. (time depends on
how thick you make your meatloaf)
While hot, place on serving platter.
Top with sliced tomato & grated
cheese; loosely cover with foil so
heat from meatloaf melts cheese.
Prepare any combination of shredded
lettuce, chopped green onion, chopped
black olives, sour cream & extra salsa
to serve on the side or on top of
meatloaf. Serves 4-6

(recipe: Holly – justapinch.com)

Gooey Butter Cookies

1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. butter, softened
1/4 tsp vanilla
1 egg
1 box Betty Crocker SuperMoist yellow cake mix

Heat oven to 375 degrees.
In medium bowl, beat cream cheese and butter
with spoon until well blended. Stir in vanilla and
egg. Add cake mix; stir until well combined.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in powdered
sugar to coat. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased
cookie sheets. Bake 11 to 15 minutes or until
set. Remove from cookie sheets to cooling

(recipe: Facebook)
Yesterday’s (husband’s) birthday dinner went over well – everyone said the Meat & Potato Pie was great as well as the ‘doctored up’ banana cake. (I thought the frosting came out too sweet) – I even added a little sour cream to tone it done, but just made it more ‘liquid’, so I had to put the cake in the refrigerator to set the frosting. Either way – they ate it!

Sure am glad I don’t have anywhere else to go today/tonight – while driving my car’s thermometer said it was 3 degrees F. but the wind chill was terrible! The minute you got out of the car your cheeks really stung from the cold; makes me think of those poor homeless people who don’t have a choice of how to stay warm. Makes me REALLY count my blessings: Thank you, Lord for my health, a house that’s warm, warm clothing, food for my family AND some to spare, a car that WORKS, and all the other ways You bless me and my family EVERY DAY!

Reminds me of the song we all learned as children: “Count your blessings, name them one-by-one; count your blessing see what God has done; Count your blessings – name them one-by-one; And it will surprise you what the Lord has done!”

Enjoy your day – stay warm!




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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I had started a project with that pattern a year or so back and then just stopped working on it. I guess I’ll do some ripping and try something else this time.

    • *My Dear Friend – have I got a site for you! (it’s free to join); I know you’ve read my posting about it before but it’s really a great go-to when you just don’t know what to knit/crochet – or need a new stitch idea: http://www.ravelry.com You go on the site, sign in and then you are able to look at 1,000nds of other peoples patterns/ideas/stitches, etc. You just click on ‘patterns’ and then it takes you to that part: you can choose knit or crochet/easy up to really complicated/anything you might want to make – just type it in (baby blanket/sweater/knit lace/crocheted slippers, etc) picture or not (I always chose picture, then you get an idea of what you’re wanting!), and make sure you check FREE for the pattern – you can peruse that site till the cows come home – it’s got TONS of great stuff to look at/ideas/patterns/techniques, etc. AND IT’S ALL FREE!!! you can check my ravelry account: just type in Grammypammie under friend search and it should bring up my account – you can look at all my projects (if you want) LOVE YOU! Thanks, AGAIN, for that crocheted pattern! Hugs; Pammie the productive (well, at least today that is . . .);-) *

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