Another Rainy Day…


It’s about 50 degrees F., gray and rainy – a great day to stay inside, curl up with your favorite afghan, something warm to drink and a good book (OR knitting/crochet)! This is the first day this week I haven’t had something to ‘go do’ so I’m still in my jammies at 10:50 a.m.! (Bad part is: middle son is planning a picnic (you heard me right) a little later and they ‘might’ be stopping in to use the bathroom. I have yet to meet new girlfriend, but son is really excited/happy with her so far. He decided (a few days ago) to plan a picnic for her – we have a neighborhood park across the street from our house – nothing special, lots of trees, a lake – nothing big; I used to take our dog there to throw a frisbee many years ago (before kids) but then they built a water treatment facility on the property so now it’s just ‘there’. He asked to borrow a plastic picnic table cover, a small cooler and a few golfing umbrellas. He’s going to Kroger to buy some take out sushi boxes, bottles of tea and maybe some mini cupcakes – I thought it was a really sweet gesture on his part (he’s my really ‘romantic’ son). Hope she sees his efforts and appreciates the gesture.

I’m also planning another “Knit/Crochet MOVIE Night” for next Tuesday night (our ‘off’ night for knit group. This time I’ve decided we’re doing a Taco Night – that should be fun, we haven’t done that theme in a few years (I’m doing the taco meat). We usually average about 12 people attending – I’m going to try to check out a movie I saw previews on: “Mom’s Night Out“: ” Hardworking mom Allyson has a crazy night out with her friends, while their husbands watch their children.” – sounds like it could be fun (it’s a 2014 movie, so maybe I’ll rent it, watch it first, then decide). The other ladies bring movies they think we might like, also, and then we lay them out on a table & vote which one we’re watching that night.


Gooey Apple Pull-apart Bread

12 frozen dinner rolls
2 Granny Smith apples, chopped
(peeled if you desire)
1/3 C. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
3 T. unsalted butter, melted &

1 T. unsalted butter, melted
1 T. brown sugar
1 T. milk
1/2 C. powdered sugar

Spray 8 X 4″ loaf pan with nonstick
spray. Place frozen rolls on a plate
& cover with plastic wrap; thaw
about 30 minutes until soft enough
to cut. In medium bowl mix apples,
cinnamon, sugar & 2 T. butter. Using
kitchen shears, cut each roll into 4,
roll into balls using your hands. Place
10 small balls on bottom of pan. Drizzle
about half remaining butter over rolls.
Cover with half apple mixture & repeat
layers until all ingredients are used up.
Let rise 1 hour or until rolls have
doubled in size.
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Bake 30-35 minutes until brown on top.
Mix butter, brown sugar, milk & powdered
sugar together & pour all over top of
bread. If too thick, add a little more milk &
stir before drizzling. If too thin, add a little
more powdered sugar, stir then pour.

NOTE: If loaf starts to get too brown on top,
cover loosely with foil & continue baking to
allow center to finish baking.


3-Ingredient Chicken

2 pkts. dry Italian salad dressing mix
1/2 C. brown sugar
6-8 chicken thighs (or any pieces)
skin on

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
Place brown sugar & seasoning pkgs.
in large ziplock bag & shake to mix.
Add chicken pieces, shake to coat &
place chicken on sheet, skin side up.
Bake 35 minutes for thighs, longer
for larger pieces until juices run clear.

(recipe: Courtney Luper-Facebook)

Chive & Onion Hash Brown Potatoes

1 1/2 C. Half & Half
1 (8 oz) tub spreadable chive & onion
cream cheese
2 T. dried minced onion
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 (20 oz, ea) pkgs. refrigerated shredded
hash brown potatoes
2 C. shredded Swiss cheese
3 T. minced fresh chives, divided
2 T. butter, cubed

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
In Dutch oven combine first 5
ingredients; cook & stir over medium
heat until blended; stir in potatoes.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
spray. Layer one third of hash brown
mixture on bottom & 2/3 C. Swiss
cheese; sprinkle with 1 T. chives –
repeat layers. Top with remaining
hash browns & cheese – dot with butter.
Bake, covered, 35 minutes. Bake,
uncovered, 10-20 minutes longer until
edges begin to brown & potatoes are
heated through. Let stand 10 minutes
before serving. Sprinkle with remaining
chives. Serves 12 (3/4 C. each)


Spinach & Mushroom Pasta Casserole

1 (8 oz) pkg. uncooked penne pasta
2 T. vegetable oil
1 C. sliced portobello mushrooms
1/2 C. butter
1/4 C. flour
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 tsp. dried basil
2 C. milk
2 C. mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen spinach, thawed,
squeezed dry
1/4 C. soy sauce

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick spray. Cook pasta
accordg. to pkg. directions for al
dente; drain. Heat oil in saucepan
over medium heat; add mushrooms
& saute 1 minute – set them aside.
Melt butter in saucepan; whisk in
flour, garlic & basil. Gradually mix
in milk until thickened. Stir in 1 C.
cheese until melted. Remove pan
from heat & stir in cooked pasta,
mushrooms, spinach & soy sauce.
Pour mixture into prepared dish
& top with remaining cheese.
Bake 20 minutes until heated
through & cheese is melted.
Serves 6-8


Almost Stuffed Pork Chops

4 pork loin chops (1 1/4 –
1 1/2 lb. each) 1 inch thick
2 T. lime juice
3 2/3 C. coarsely crumbled cracker
crumbs (about 4 oz crackers)
6 oz. fresh mushrooms, finely
chopped (about 1 C.)
3 scallions (green onions), chopped
1 T. Dijon mustard
1 T. dried parsley flakes

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
spray. Brush both sides of chops with
lime juice & place in dish. In medium
bowl combine remaining ingredients.
Mix until well blended & spoon evenly
over chops. Bake 40-45 minutes until
chops are cooked through. Serves 4


Corned Beef Hash

1 1/2 lb. russet potatoes, peeled/
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 T. cooking oil
1 tsp. fresh thyme
8 oz. cooked or leftover corned beef,
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
eggs (optional, if you want poached)
1 T. vinegar (if making eggs)

Cook potatoes, onion, thyme, garlic,
salt/pepper in cooking oil in large
skillet. Gently turn occasionally about
20-25 minutes until potatoes are
cooked through & browned, adding
corned beef last 5 minutes – it only
needs to heat up, you don’t want it
breaking up too much.

IF you want poached eggs:
Heat 2 C. water in small saucepan with
1 T. vinegar until it just simmers. Keep
it at a simmer (little bubbles coming
up from bottom, not quite boiling).
Break eggs singly into small dishes.
When water is simmering, use a spoon
to swirl water around into a whirlpool.
While water is still swirling, bring egg
dish close to water & very gently tilt
it so egg goes in without a ‘plop’. Keep
a close eye on water & do NOT let it
boil. Turn it down if it tries, poaching
time should be 2-4 minutes. To gauge
doneness of your egg, put a spoon
beneath the egg & lift it just a little
bit – give it a little jiggle – how much
the yolk wiggles will let you know how
soft it is. A bit of jiggling for runny yolks,
less for a more cooked egg. When done,
lift egg out using a slotted spoon, onto
a bed of hot hash. (if you don’t use a
slotted spoon you’ll get water on your
plate). Serves 4-6


Asparagus/Roasted Pepper Frittata

6 eggs, lightly beaten
Half & Half, or cream (a splash)
2 T. butter
1 small red onion, sliced into half moon
8 oz. fresh asparagus spears, trimmed/
1 T. snipped fresh chives
1/4 C. hot water
1 roasted sweet red bell pepper, sliced
6 T. ricotta cheese
2-4 T. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Heat butter in 10 inch skillet; add onions,
cooking until they wilt. Add asparagus;
season with salt/pepper & add chives.
Cook 1 minute; add 1/4 C. hot water &
continue cooking until water evaporates,
about 2 minutes. Add pepper slices &
pour beaten eggs evenly over vegetables
in skillet. Add 6 dollops ricotta cheese,
evenly spaced*. Sprinkle top with Parm.
cheese & place skillet in oven. Bake 25
minutes until set. Allow to cool in pan
10-15 minutes then loosen sides if needed
before sliding frittata onto a platter. Slice
into wedges & serve. Serves 2-3 as a
main meal, or up to 6 as part of a breakfast

*No need to measure the cheese


7-Layer Dip Dessert

4 C. milk
3 bananas, sliced thin
1 lb. strawberries, sliced thin
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip,
1 C. honey-roasted almonds
1 C. pretzels, crushed
1 (5 oz) pkg. instant chocolate
pudding mix
1 (5 0z) pkg. instant vanilla
pudding mix

Vanilla wafer cookies
graham crackers

In small bowl whisk 2 C. milk with
vanilla pudding; in separate bowl
whisk 2 C. milk & chocolate pudding –
refrigerate both bowls & let set.
After pudding is set, add ingredients
in this order in a 9 X 13″ baking dish:

-chocolate pudding on bottom
-sliced bananas
-crushed pretzels
-vanilla pudding
-sliced almonds
-sliced strawberries
Spread Cool Whip over top evenly –
you can top with more almonds, if
Refrigerate & keep cold until ready to
serve. Serve with vanilla wafers and/or
graham crackers, for dipping. Serves 20

NOTE: You can use fresh fruit, or
more pudding instead of Cool Whip
and/or: a layer of chocolate chips,
if desired.



Had a fun night at Knit night Tuesday, one of my
friends from church had asked if I would mind her
9 1/2 yr old daughter joining us – she had just
taught herself how to knit and wanted a little
help. She came for about 1 1/2 hours and we had
a great time; she’s home schooled (very bright)
and ‘held her own’ sitting with two of our expert
knitters. I wasn’t too sure what they’d think about
having a young girl asking constant questions but
when she left they said they probably wouldn’t
have been as outgoing and confident when they
were her age – they were impressed. I know she
had a good time and her Mom was thrilled –
it all adds a little more ‘spice’ to our gathering!
We also had two other new ladies join us – both
nurses (one retired, one active). The older lady
said she used to knit socks and would need a
‘LITTLE’ help remembering – well, I sat her with
another expert SOCK knitter – after she left I was
told the lady hadn’t knitted in a good 20 years
and had a very old copy-of a copy- of – a copy
of a pattern which was actually unable to be
read. My friend gave the lady HER beginners
sock pattern and got her back on track. I gave
my friend a big HUG for all her efforts – you
just never know . . . some say they know how
to knit/crochet and really don’t…others just
need a little guiding help but in the end:

Not much else new around here; still working
on the two baby afghans. Monday I had to make
a quick trip to Office Depot for printer ink and
in the same shopping center is JoAnns – I ended
up buying 3 skeins of yarn on sale for $3.00 per
skein (YAY!) – they’re baby yarn in a variegated
bright blue, bright green & white. I’m thinking of
doing a pattern I’ve done before, using this yarn
as the ‘in between’ colors and a solid white for
the main pattern:

Hope your day is going well – remember to
smile a little – it helps exercise your face
muscles AND it just might lighten your
mood and the moods of others!



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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Beautiful pattern on the blanket Lady Jane. If I ever get this place I might be able to attend one of your knit club days.

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