Love Getting Inspired!


Last night was Knit/Crochet Night and we had a rousing group of 19 – lots of laughter; a great night. Just before we started, a lady who was a member probably 6 years ago came bringing me 3 1/2 ‘kitchen sized’ garbage bags full of YARN! YAY! (Yes, I’ll admit – I’m like a kid at Christmas when it comes to free yarn!) My friend has been living between Michigan & Florida for all these years and is now selling her Michigan house & moving to Florida permanently. I was thrilled with her yarn gifts – she’s an expert knitter; in one of the bags was an almost totally finished long sleeved, turtle neck cream colored sweater (I know one of my expert knitters will seize that with glee – it only needs the sides sewed up and the hem finished. NO, I’m not a sweater knitter and this one would fit a large man). There was almost an entire bag of BABY yarn and the really exciting part for me was, there was about 6 small skeins of the exact same white terry-looking yarn I’m working with for the crocheted granny squares! Another bag held lots of heavy weight dark grey yarn – someone will like that (good for a heavy afghan, or a sweater/scarf). I kept out a few bits of yarn (cream/tan/dark brown) to make another scarf for the homeless shelters. I thought it was so sweet – my friend said: “I want YOU to get first choice on all the yarn, keep it ALL if you want to, because I know you will make something beautiful with it.” She knows I mostly knit charity items. In amidst the yarn was a totally finished (very pretty) white knit baby blanket – it only needs a border. In her yarns were 4 small balls of baby green yarn which I plan on using for a border – another blanket for the Detroit Vets Baby shower! Speaking of that event; went to Salvation Army yesterday after my cancer doctor check-up (I’m fine). Found two almost brand new crocheted baby blankets – plan on putting those with the other blankets for this next event. One I’d like to make just a little larger (it’s very vibrant: kelly green, bright yellow and the center is white). I’m thinking of making another border in white – simple Granny Square pattern, so it shouldn’t take much to finish it. Oh, and I got it for half-off: $.99! The other one is a pretty various pinks crochet – rather large, for $2.99 – I bought it for two reasons: (1) for the baby shower & (2) to find the PATTERN for this! (I love learning new things). Took me awhile but I finally located the pattern; it’s called “Block Crochet”


and the site I found has a step-by-step tutorial on how to do this!


Mediterranean Pasta Salad

4 C. rotini pasta, uncooked
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes,
3/4 C. mayonnaise (or Miracle Whip)
3/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 C. sliced black olives
1 (6 oz) pkg. pepperoni
1 zucchini, sliced thin

Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions,
omitting salt; drain. Mix tomatoes & mayo
in large bowl; add cooked pasta; toss to
coat. Reserve 1/4 C. cheese; add remaining
ingredients to pasta mixture; mix lightly.
Refrigerage at least 1 hour before serving.
Sprinkle with reserved cheese just before
serving. Serves 10

(recipe: kraftrecipes)

Bruschetta Chicken Baked
foil packets

1 (6 oz) box stuffing mix for chicken
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes,
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 small boneless skinless chicken
breasts (1 1/2 lb)
1 tsp. dried basil
1 C. shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Combine stuffing mix, tomatoes &
garlic just until stuffing mix is
moistened. Place 1 chicken breast on
center of  each of 6 large sheets heavy-
duty foil sprayed with nonstick spray.
Top with basil, stuffing mixture & cheese.
Fold foil to make 6 packets; place on
rimmed baking sheet. Bake 30-35
minutes until chicken is done. Cut slits
in foil to release steam before opening.
Serves 6

(recipe: Kraft recipes)

Key Lime Cloud Squares

1 1/3 C. graham cracker crumbs,
1/4 C. butter, melted
3/4 C. boiling water
1 (3 oz) pkg.
lime flavored Jell-O
1 C. ice cubes
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
3/4 C. lime juice
2 C. Cool Whip, thawed

Reserve 1 T. graham cracker crumbs.
Mix remaining crumbs with butter; press
onto bottom of plastic-wrap lined 9″
square baking pan. Refrigerate until
ready to use.
Add boiling water to Jello in small bowl;
stir 2 minutes until completely dissolved.
Add ice; stir 2 minutes until thickened.
Remove any unmelted ice. Beat cream
cheese in medium bowl until creamy.
Gradually beat in milk, then lime juice.
Add Jello; mix well. Whisk in 1 C.
Cool Whip & pour over crust. Refrigerate
6 hours until firm. Cover with remaining
Cool Whip just before serving; sprinkle
top with reserved graham cracker crumbs.
Use plastic wrap ‘handles’ to remove
dessert from pan before cutting into
squares. Serves 16

(recipe: Kraft recipes)

Greek Tomato Salad

4 fresh tomatoes, chopped
1 cucumber, peeled & chopped
1 green bell pepper, cut into
1/2″ pieces
1/2 C. chopped red onion
1 T. red wine vinegar
1 T. balsamic vinegar
1 T. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
1 T. chopped fresh oregano
1/4 C. kalamata olives
1/2 C. feta cheese, crumbled

Mix together vinegars, oil, salt &
oregano; add other ingredients &
toss well. Refrigerate several hours
to allow flavors to blend. Serves 6


Oven Roasted Potatoes with Bacon

1 T. olive oil
1/2 lb. hickory smoked, thick-sliced bacon
3 1/2 lb. potatoes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 C. Parmigiano cheese, grated
fresh parsley, chopped

Peel & wash potatoes; place in a large pot
of salted water & bring to boil; cook 12 minutes
or until potatoes are tender.
While potatoes are
cooking, cut bacon into pieces & cook until
browned (not crunchy).
Use a fork to
pierce potatoes to see if they re tender; drain
& let cool completely.
NOTE: Freeze bacon 15-20 minutes before
cutting – will be easier to cut.

Preheat oven 425 degrees F
Once potatoes are cool, peel & cut in half or
quarter if potatoes are large. Brush baking
sheets with 1 T. olive oil & half the bacon
drippings. Place potatoes, cut sides down, on
pan & sprinkle with salt & pepper.  Bake
35-40 minutes, rotate potatoes halfway
through baking time to ensure even baking.
Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees F.
Turn potatoes over & sprinkle with bacon, garlic
& grated cheese; return to oven & bake an
additional 15-20 minutes or until potatoes
are evenly browned & cheese is melted.
Remove from oven; sprinkle with fresh
parsley. Serve immediately.
Serves 4-6.


Golden Squash Casserole

2 lb. (about 7) yellow summer squash,
cut into 1″ chunks
3/4 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese,
1/4 C. mayonnaise
1 egg
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray a 2 Qt. baking dish with nonstick
spray. In large saucepan add squash with
enough water to cover; bring to boil. Reduce
heat to medium & cook 8-10 minutes just
until squash is tender; drain well. In large
bowl combine squash, 1/2 C. cheese, mayo,
egg, salt/pepper – spoon into prepared dish &
sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 30
minutes until golden & heated through.


Sunday Night Noodles

1 (16 oz) pkg. medium egg noodles
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen chopped
spinach, thawed/drained well
2 C. cottage cheese
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 (16 oz) tub sour cream
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 T. butter, melted
1/4 C. dry bread crumbs

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick spray. In large pot of
boiling salted water cook noodles
accordg. to pkg. directions; drain.
In large bowl mix spinach, cottage
cheese, Parm. cheese, sour cream,
salt/pepper, Italian seasoning. Stir
in noodles then spoon mixture into
prepared dish. In small bowl combine
melted butter & bread crumbs; sprinkle
mixture over noodles. Cover with foil
& bake 45 minutes until heated through.
Serve immediately. Serves 6


Mock Chinese Soup

2 C. water
1/2 C. canned mixed Chinese vegetable,
1/3 C. canned cut green beans, drained
1 tsp. chicken bouillon granules

In small saucepan combine all ingredients;
bring to boil. Reduce heat & simmer,
uncovered, 10-15 minutes until heated
through. Serves 2


Blueberry Cream Cheese

1/2 C. butter, room temp.
1/2 C. sugar
1 large egg
1/4 C. sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla
2 C. flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 C. milk
1 1/2 C. blueberries

Cheesecake topping:
8 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1/3 C. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 large egg

Final topping:
1/3 C. powdered sugar
1/2 C. blueberries

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

Cream butter & sugar until light/fluffy.
Beat in egg & vanilla; add sour cream
& milk – mix together until incorporated.
Add flour, baking powder & salt; mix
just until incorporated. Spread evenly
into a greased 9 inch cake pan (can use
a springform pan). Spread 1 1/2 C.
blueberries on top.

Cheesecake topping:
Beat cream cheese with sugar until
incorporated. Add vanilla & egg; spread
on top of coffee cake layer

Bake 45-55 minutes until a toothpick
inserted into center comes out clean.
Allow to cool completely before serving
Sprinkle powdered sugar over dessert
then sprinkle blueberries & serve.
Serves 10


Well, our weather finally ‘broke’ – we
had some pretty heavy rain last night.
The good thing was: it started while
we were at Knit Night and stopped
before we went home! It’s a little
cooler today with a pretty good breeze,
69 degrees F. with a 60% chance of
thunderstorms tonight (sure hope not-
our special needs students really freak
out with thunder).

Have to get gas today and not looking
forward to it; gas prices are still stuck
at $2.75/9 – BUT I do have a 30 cents
off a gallon coupon for Speedway that
I got after shopping at KMart so that
will definitely help!

Hope you have a GREAT DAY!




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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. I have printed the new pattern and will attempt it. You are lucky to have the gas coupon. I have been putting off buying gas but I’ll soon have to bite the bullet!

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