Playin’ Around

I finally was able to make contact with the lady in charge of the Detroit Veteran’s Hospital Baby Shower (YAY) and we had a very nice chat; managed to work out all the small twists in when she will receive all of our knitted & crocheted donations. While chatting I mentioned knowing there’s another church who also donates items for this event. She mentioned that they received something they’ve never got before: baby headbands. That, of course, got me to thinking: “Wonder if I could make those?” Here ya go:



They’re not hard, take about an hour altogether – a little knitting on the band and crocheting on the flowers; I always love a new challenge.

Today has been a nice, quiet day – got some running/shopping done and was home within an hour. Middle son stopped over for a quick visit (or, as he said: “I came to eat your food, tell you I love you and then ‘BYE’!) – love that kid!

Picked up grandson from the bus stop yesterday; I guess I didn’t realize his DAD would be picking him up later. That’s a GOOD thing, as it gives us a chance to SEE our oldest at least once a week!

Our weather is FINALLY acting like SUMMER – today it got up to 96 (right while I was driving youngest to work – good thing my car has AC!) About an hour ago we had a small thunderstorm (temps before storm, about 92 – after around 85). Right now (9 p.m.)  72 degrees F.


Butter Cream Chicken

4 chicken breasts
1 1/2 sleeves Ritz crackers,
crushed into crumbs
olive oil
1 C. chicken broth
4 T. butter
1 C. plus 2 T. Half & Half, divided
1/2 tsp. thyme, dried
2 T. cornstarch
salt & pepper

Cut chicken into chunks using
kitchen shears; place pieces in
a ziplock bag & seal. Pound
chicken flat using a meat mallet.
Pour cracker crumbs into a
loaf pan. Press each chicken
piece into crumbs, being sure
to coat both sides generously.
Place each coated piece on a plate.
Heat large skillet over medium-high
heat. Once skillet is hot, pour about
5 T. olive oil in pan. Let oil heat about
30 seconds then put chicken carefully
into pan – do not crowd- you will
need to cook the chicken in 2 batches.
Let chicken cook about 3-4 minutes per
side, turning with a fork. Remove to
separate plate & cook second batch,
adding another few tablespoons oil
to pan before adding chicken. Once
done cooking chicken add 4 T. butter,
1 C. chicken broth to pan, allowing
butter to melt. Whisk mixture, scraping
bottom of pan to break crispy pieces
loose. Add Half & Half, dried thyme &
whisk to incorporate & allow to come
to a boil. In small bowl pour 2 T.
Half & Half and 2 T. cornstarch, stir
until smooth. Pour cornstarch mixture
into pan & stir with whisk; allow to
return to boil. It will thicken as it heats.
Remove from heat, taste & adjust
with salt & pepper. Place chicken on
a platter, serve with cream gravy.
Serves 6


Peach Coffee Cake

1 (18 1/2 oz) pkg. yellow cake mix
3 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. lemon extract, divided
1/2 C. chopped walnuts
1 (21 oz) can peach pie filling, cut
into smaller pieces
1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. flour
1/4 C. butter, softened

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl, combine dry cake mix,
3ggs, 1/2 tsp. extract, walnuts & pie
filling; stir until well blended. Spread
in greased & floured 9 X 13 pan; set
aside. In separate bowl, mix sugar,
flour, butter & remaining extract with
a fork or pastry blender until crumbly;
sprinkle evenly over batter. Bake 40-45
minutes, until center of cake springs
back when touched. Serves 12

(recipe: Marys Recipe Exchange)

Crockpot Taco Dip

2 lb. Velveeta cheese, cubed
2 (13 oz, ea) cans chili
2 lb. ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
1-2 pkgs. Taco seasoning mix
2 T. chili powder
Tabasco sauce, to taste

Brown ground beef & onions;
drain. Add to crockpot with
remaining ingredients. Cook,
on Low, 2 hours or until
Velveeta is melted.

(recipe: Crockpotladies)

Green Beans with Cherry Tomatoes

1 1l2 lb. fresh green beans*
1 T. butter
3/4 tsp. garlic salt
1 T. sugar
1/2 tsp. basil
salt & pepper
1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, cut
in half

Cook beans in water until tender.
In a skillet melt butter & add garlic
salt, sugar, basil, salt & pepper.
Place cherry tomato halves in skillet
& cook until barely soft & heated,
but not squishy. Add drained beans &
mix well.
*You can use drained canned green
beans & canned stewed tomatoes
instead of fresh cherry tomatoes. Add
canned vegetables to butter/basil mixture
& heat through.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Cilantro Lime Rice

2 C. uncooked rice
1 T. butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 chicken bullion cubes
1 tsp. lime zest
4 C. water
2 T. lime juice
1 T. sugar
3 T. fresh cilantro, chopped

In large skillet combine rice,
butter, garlic, lime zest, bullion
cubes & water; bring to boil &
stir well. Reduce heat to Low;
cover & simmer 20-30 minutes.
In small bowl combine lime juice,
sugar & cilantro; pour over top
of hot cooked rice; stir. Makes
about 4 C. cooked rice


Crab Cakes with Spicy Mayo

1 lb. crabmeat, picked free of
1 C. panko bread crumbs
3 green onions, finely chopped
(green & white parts)
1/2 C. finely chopped bell pepper
1/4 C. mayonnaise
1 egg
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. dry mustard
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. salt
dash cayenne pepper
1/2 C. peanut oil
spicy mayo (recipe below)

Mix egg, mayo, onion, bell
pepper & seasonings in a bowl
until combined. Add crab & half of
panko crumbs; mix. Do not overmix-
you want the crab to remain in chunks.
Form mixture into cakes; coat in
remaining panko. Place cakes on a plate
covered with waxed paper. Cover & place
in fridge at least 2 hours. This lets them
solidify a bit & makes them a lot easier
to fry them.
Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat.
When oil is hot, carefully place crab cakes
in batches, in pan & fry until browned,
about 4-5 minutes. Carefully flip cakes
& fry other side until golden brown, about
4 minutes. Serve warm with spicy mayo.

Spicy Mayo

4 T. mayonnaise
few drops olive oil
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
few dashes tabasco
1 clove crushed garlic
1 tsp. lemon juice.

Mix all ingredients & serve
with crab cakes, on side.


Golden Summer Squash &
Corn Soup

1 T. olive oil
1 medium shallot, chopped
2 medium summer squash,
(about 1 lb) diced
3 tsp. chopped fresh herbs:
such as thyme or oregano,
1 (14 oz) can chicken or
vegetable broth
1/4 tsp. salt
1 C. fresh corn kernels
(from 1 large ear*)
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/4 C. crumbled feta cheese

Heat oil in large saucepan over
medium heat. Add shallot &
cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add
squash & 1 tsp. herbs; cook,
stirring occasionally, until
squash starts to soften, 3-5
minutes. Add broth & salt; bring
to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer &
cook until squash is soft & mostly
translucent, about 5 minutes more.
Transfer to a blender & puree until
smooth. Return soup to pan & stir
in corn; bring to a simmer over
medium heat & cook, stirring
occasionally, until corn is tender,
3-5 minutes more. Remove from
heat, stir in lemon juice. Serve
garnished with remaining 2 tsp.
herbs & feta cheese. Serves 4
(1 scant Cup each)

*To remove corn from cob, stand
an uncooked ear on it’s stem end
in a shallow bowl. Slice kernels
off using a sharp, thin-bladed knife.
If making a soup, after cutting off
the kernels, you can reverse the
knife & use the dull side to press
down the length of the ear to push
out the rest of the corn & it’s milk.


Ranch-Bacon Chopped Salad

6 C. torn lettuce
1 large tomato, chopped
1 zucchini, chopped
1 C. frozen corn, thawed
1/4 C. bacon bits
1/2 C. Ranch salad dressing

Toss lettuce with tomatoes,
zucchini, corn & bacon bits in
large bowl. Add dressing just
before serving; toss to coat.
Serves 4,1 1/2 C. each

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Strawberry Banana Cheesecake Salad

1 bag miniature marshmallows
1 (16 oz) tub vanilla yogurt
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
1 pkg. no-bake cheesecake filling
1-2 containers sliced fresh strawberries
3-4 sliced bananas

Stir together first 4 ingredients; fold
in fruit. Other fruits can be added or
substituted. Best served chilled and
the same day (due to banana dis-

(recipe: Facebook)


Not much going on so far this weekend;
Sunday starts back to singing in the
choir and choir practices at 4:45 p.m.
before evening church 6-7 p.m. I really
LOVE singing in the choir – not to show
off my voice, but I love the challenge
of learning new music, challenging
myself to see if I can actually hit the
really high notes (or not – thank heavens
we have two ladies in the choir who
really CAN hit the high notes ON KEY!).
It’s nice to share the experience with a
great group of people who are all
doing the same thing: trying our very
best to sing praises to the Lord and to
help the congregation join in the praise.
We have a great choir director and his
wife (she plays piano and organ); they’re
a great team with lots of enthusiasm – it
really makes the entire experience a lot
of FUN!

Hope you’re enjoying your day (or night);




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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Love the baby bands, really cute, and I bet you will make a few more of those. I said I had a junk drawer and you said you had a junk house. Well I can beat you===My house is full of junk and is a soup bowl besides!!!!!

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