Monday Amusements


Well, now it’s OFFICIALLY Winter in my area! We went from a light dusting of snow last week to SNOW on the ground (about an inch) and temperatures very close to ZERO! Wind chill is certainly NOT helping things out any – VERY COLD & NIPPY out there today! The forecasts are calling for snow, on & off, all week and super low temperatures (oh, goody) – sigh. Sure makes you think twice about any ‘quick trips’ you might be wanting to make to the grocery store, drug store, library, etc. (Now is when you ‘bundle’ trips so that you’re only out there a short time).

Yesterday was middle son’s 26th birthday; yes, he’s the one who was very sick & in the hospital over 2 weeks. He’s doing VERY well – decided he wanted his favorite birthday fare: frosted chocolate brownies, so that’s what he got.101_0118

He’s really proud of his full beard – used to be he couldn’t grow a full one, but now he can! His older brother called today to say that his work could use him if he wanted to come in tonight; I’m glad that he held his ground and said that he needed about a week more to heal – he hasn’t done any long walks, work outs, etc. and preparing to work 8+ hours standing on his feet is NOT a good idea, just yet (in my “Mommy” opinion).  We’re still super glad that he’s getting his strength back, eating well and slowly recovering. Praise the Lord!


Lots of new recipes coming in:

Jalapeno Popper Burgers

1 lb. hamburger
salt & pepper

Jalapeno Cream Cheese
1/4 C. cream cheese
2 T. plain Greek yogurt
1/2 jalapeno, seeds/ribs removed
+ extra for topping
1 clove garlic

4 hamburger buns
4 slices cooked bacon
shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

In large bowl season ground beef with salt/
pepper; mix well & divide into 4 equal
patties. Press center of each patty with your
thumb  to make a slight indent – helps with
even cooking. Prepare jalapeno cream: place
cream cheese, yogurt, 1/2 jalapeno & garlic
in food processor; pulse until well combined.
Grill burgers to desired doneness then place
on buns; top with jalapeno cream, Cheddar
cheese & 1 slice bacon each. Serves 4

Cheesy Spanish Rice

2 T. butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 C. chopped onion
1/4 C. chopped red/orange or green
bell pepper
2 C. rice (poster used short grain)
1 (6 oz) can tomato sauce
3 1/2 C. chicken broth*
1/2 tsp. cumin
salt & pepper
1 T. butter
1 C. shredded Mexican-blend cheese

Heat large deep skillet over medium-high
heat; add 2 T. butter & melt. Add garlic,
onion & bell pepper – cook 5 minutes
stirring occasionally until onions are
translucent. Add rice; stir & allow rice to
cook a little (need it turn a little brown –
let some of the grains turn brown, not
all – be careful not to burn).  Add tomato
sauce, chicken broth & cumin & stir.
Reduce heat to medium-low; cover pan.
Allow to simmer about 12-15 minutes
until rice has absorbed liquid & is no
longer crunchy. Sprinkle with a bit of
salt & pepper; add another T. butter;
stir to combine. Turn off heat & sprinkle
Mexican-blend cheese over top; cover
pan & let sit 5 minutes until cheese has
melted. Serves 8

*poster used 3 1/2 C. water & 3 1/2 tsp.
chicken bullion mixed in

Italian Tortellini Soup

1 lb. hamburger
1 1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1 onion, chopped
salt & pepper
3 (14.5 oz, ea) cans Italian stewed
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
8 C. water
8 tsp. beef bullion
1 green pepper, chopped
1 C. chopped carrots
1 C. fresh or frozen green
beans, chopped
1 can kidney beans
1 C. chopped zucchini
salt & pepper
1 pkg. Good Seasoning Italian
Salad dressing mix (dry)
1 can tomato soup
1 (20 oz.) pkg. cheese tortellini
(refrigerated or dried)

Brown hamburger in large skillet
with onion, garlic, salt & pepper. Add
canned tomatoes to a blender; blend
30 seconds. Place meat mixture, blended
tomatoes & all other ingredients except
tortellini & tomato soup in large soup pot.
Bring to boil; cover & reduce heat.
Simmer 20  minutes. In separate medium
saucepan, cook tortellini accordge to pke.
directions. Be sure not to over cook. When
it’s done cooking, drain water & add to
large soup pot. Stir in tomato soup; simmer
5 minutes. Serves 12


Ice Cream Sandwich Cake

ice cream sandwiches*
hot fudge sauce
Cool Whip, thawed
(crunchy topping of your
choice – see below)

*size of cake is your choice;
poster used a 9 X 13 pan which
required 16 ice cream sandwiches.
Layer sandwiches in bottom of pan.
Pour a layer of hot fudge sauce over
top, then spread a layer of Cool Whip,
top with crunchy topping of your
choice. Refrigerate dessert 1 hour
before serving.

(crunchy topping suggestions:
Heath English Toffee bits, oreo cookies
crumbled, chocolate chips, chopped
nuts – you name it).


Broccoli Ham Ring

2 (8 oz, ea) tubes refrigerated
crescent roll dough
1 1/2 C. (6 oz) shredded Swiss cheese
1/4 lb. boneless fully cooked ham,
2 1/4 C. chopped fresh broccoli
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 C. minced fresh parsley
2 T. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. lemon juice

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Unroll crescent dough & place
triangles on a 12 inch pizza pan,
forming a ring with pointed ends
facing outer edge of pan & wide
ends overlapping. Lightly press
wide ends together. In large bowl
combine remaining ingredients;
spoon over wide ends of rolls. Fold
points over filling & tuck under wide
ends (filling will be visible). Bake
20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
Serves 6-8


Cheesy Crockpot Cauliflower

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1 can condensed Cheddar cheese soup
1 (5 oz) can evaporated milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/4 C. finely diced onion
2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

Grease inside of 3-4 qt. crockpot.
Place cauliflower florets in bottom. In
medium saucepan combine remaining
ingredients. Heat over medium heat,
stirring constantly, until cheese melted.


BBQ Ranch Chicken Layer Salad

1/2 C. ranch salad dressing
1/2 C. BBQ sauce
2 heads Romaine lettuce, washed &
cut into 6″ pieces
3 C. cooked/cubed chicken
1 can black beans, rinsed/drained
1 can corn, drained
1 C. cherry tomatoes, halved
1 red pepper, chopped
1/2 C. pitted black olives, chopped
2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

Whisk BBQ sauce & ranch dressing
in a bowl; set aside. In a 9 X 13 dish,
arrange half of lettuce across bottom
of dish, overlapping slightly & making
sure the entire bottom of the dish is
covered. Evenly spread half chicken on
lettuce, then add 1/2 of each remaining
ingredient: beans/corn/tomatoes/red
pepper & olives. Spread half of dressing
on top then sprinkle half of cheese on
top. Layer remaining lettuce & second
half of remaining ingredients again, ending
with cheese. Wrap tightly with plastic
wrap & chill overnight in refrigerator.
Cut into squares and serve cold.
Serves 6


Cheesy Bacon Corn Dip

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese,
1/2 C. mayonnaise
4 oz. sharp Cheddar cheese,
4 slices thick sliced bacon,
cooked & diced
1 heaping C. grilled corn*
kernels (from about 2 ears)
1 tsp. dried basil (or 1 T.
chopped fresh basil)
chopped tomatoes, for
topping (optional)

your favorite crackers or
cut fresh veggies, as dippers

Beat cream cheese until smooth.
Add mayonnaise & continue
beating until well combined. Add
remaining ingredients & stir
together (except chopped
tomatoes.) Chill until ready to
serve. Place mixture in a bowl,
top with chopped tomatoes &
serve crackers or fresh veggies
as dippers.

NOTE: If corn isn’t in season,
you can use frozen corn; steam &
let it cool before adding to dip

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Cannoli Cones

2 3/4 C. ricotta cheese
3/4 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
zest of one lemon
1/2 C. miniature semi-sweet
chocolate chips, divided
12 sugar ice cream cones
assorted sprinkles or chopped

Beat ricotta, powdered sugar,
vanilla, cinnamon & lemon zest with
a elec. mixer on medium-high until
fully incorporated & smooth. Fold
in 1/4 C. choc. chips & transfer
mixture to a large zip-top bag.
Refrigerate at least 30 minutes
while preparing cones.

In microwave-safe bowl, heat
remaining 1/4 C. choc. chips in
30 second intervals, stirring until
melted & smooth. Dip wide end
of ice cream cone into melted
chocolate chips, tap off excess
& roll in either sprinkles or nuts.
Place on sheet of waxed paper
to set.

When chocolate has set, remove
filling from refrigerator & cut a
small opening in the corner of
the bag. Pipe filling into each
cone & serve immediately.
Makes 12 cones

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Gas prices continue to fall in the area;
lowest I’ve seen so far is $1.76/9 – I’m SO
happy it’s below $2.00! YAY!

Have you taken down all your Christmas
decorations yet? Me, neither! Was happy
when shopping at our local drug store today
to purchase a very large roll of Christmas
wrapping paper (normally $5.99) for $1.49 –
yay – bonus!) I think we only used one roll
of paper this year, so that was a nice replace-

This is our first ‘regular’ week back to ‘normal’ –
tomorrow is Knit Night, Wednesday is my
special needs group and this Saturday is the
other knit group – time flies when you’re having
fun – right? Still working on knitting baby hats
and attempting to complete the two knit
scarves I started months ago for the other knit
group (remember they give all their items to
4 local homeless shelters). It’s not that I don’t like
knitting them, it’s just they are heavier-weight
yarn which tends to make my hands tire quicker.
(I hear ya – whine, whine, right?) Will be glad
when they’re done – and it’s MY fault – I chose
the yarn! Actually found both big bundles in
one of my yarn tubs – don’t remember where
or when I got them but they’re useful for this
type of thing).

Going to close for now – gotta start dinner:
ham, probably either macaroni & cheese or
mashed potatoes & tossed salad. The hungry
men in my house are calling!




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