More Holiday Recipes!

As I’ve mentioned before – LOTS of great sounding holiday recipes are pouring into my emails so, of course, I JUST HAVE TO SHARE THEM! Enjoy –


Crockpot Zucchini Cake w/Cream
Cheese Frosting

2 C. flour
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. baking powder
3 large eggs
2 C. sugar
1/2 C. vegetable oil
1/2 C. unsweetened applesauce
2 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. grated lemon zest
2 C. grated unpeeled zucchini
(about 2-3 small – squeeze to
remove moisture after grating)
1 C. chopped pecans or walnuts
1/2 C. golden raisins

Cream Cheese Frosting:

6 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick
cooking spray. In medium bowl whisk
flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, nutmeg
& baking powder. In another medium bowl
whisk eggs, sugar, vegetable oil, applesauce,
lemon zest & vanilla until well combined.
Add dry ingredients to wet in three separate
batches, mixing until well combined before
adding more dry ingredients. Stir in shredded
zucchini, pecans & raisins to batter & stir with
a spatula or wooden spoon until all is well
distributed into batter. Pour batter into crockpot
& spread batter evenly. Place a double layer
of paper towels on top of crockpot, under the
to prevent condensation from dripping onto
cake. Cover & cook on High 2-3 hours (check
cake at 2 hour mark & cook for additional time
only if necessary) or until a wooden toothpick
inserted into center of cake comes out clean.
Once cake is cooked, remove lid & paper
towels – lift stoneware crock out of base &
place cake in crock on a wire cooling rack –
allow cake to cool to room temperature before

While cake is cooking add softened cream
cheese, powdered sugar, lemon juice &
vanilla to bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a
whisk attachment. Mix on slow speed until
powdered sugar is incorporated into cream
cheese. Turn mixer on medium-high & whisk
3-5 minutes until frosting is light & fluffy.
Spread frosting on cooled cake.
Serves 12

Grilled Greek Pork Chops
(8 hour or overnight recipe)

3 T. olive oil
6 tsp. lemon juice
1 1/2 T. Worcestershire sauce
3 tsp. dried oregano
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp. black pepper
3/4 tsp. ground mustard
6 boneless pork loin chops
(3/4″ thick & about 4 oz, ea)

In large ziplock bag mix first 9
ingredients. Add chops; seal
bag & mix well until all chops
are coated. Refrigerate 8 hours
or overnight.

Remove chops from bag & discard
marinade. Grill chops, covered,
over medium heat, 4-5 minute per
side until internal temperature
reaches at least 150 degrees F.
Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Serves 6

Crunchy Ramen Taco Salad

1/2 C. Ranch salad dressing
1/2 C. hot sauce
2 T. fresh lime juice
2 (3 oz., ea) pkgs. ramen noodle soup
1 (14 oz) pkg. coleslaw blend (cabbage
slaw mix)
1 C. frozen corn, thawed
1 C. (15 oz) canned black beans,
1 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 C. coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

Mix dressing, hot sauce & lime juice
until blended. Break ramen noodles
into a large bowl (discard seasoning
packet – or reserve for another use).
Add remaining ingredients & dressing
mixture to noodles; mix lightly.
Serves 15 (2/3 C. each)


Super Supendous Potato Salad

1 clove garlic, peeled
3 lb. small red potatoes, quartered
2 T. cider vinegar, divided
1 1/2 tsp. salt, divided
6 hard-boiled eggs, divided
1 C. mayonnaise
1/2 C. sour cream
1 T. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. paprika (plus extra for
garnish – optional)
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 medium sweet onion, finely chopped
2 ribs celery, finely chopped
2 T. minced fresh parsley

Skewer garlic with a toothpick (to make
it easier to find after cooking). Place
potatoes, 1 T. vinegar, 1 tsp. salt & skewered
garlic in Dutch oven. Add water to cover &
bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer until
tender, 10-12 minutes. Drain, reserving
garlic – remove skewer & crush garlic. Chop
5 hard boiled eggs. In a large bowl whisk
together mayonnaise, sour cream, mustard,
paprika, pepper, garlic & remaining vinegar &
salt. Stir in potatoes, chopped eggs, onion &
celery. Refrigerate 4 hours until cold.
Just before serving, slice remaining egg &
arrange on top of salad; sprinkle with parsley
& additional paprika (if using). Serves 12

BLT & Bow Tie Pasta Salad

1 (16 oz) pkg. bowtie noodles
1 (16 oz) pkg. bacon
2 grilled chicken breasts, chopped
2 pints grape tomatoes, sliced
1 head romaine lettuce, chopped

1 C. mayonnaise (not light)
1 1/3 C. milk
3 1/2 T. (dry) ranch salad dressing mix
8 T. Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper

Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions;
place cooked pasta in a strainer in sink &
run cold water over it until it cools down.
Cook bacon accordg. to pkg. directions;
place on a paper towel & dab off all grease
from top of bacon. Allow to cool then
On a large serving platter with a lip
(or in a large serving bowl):
Place pasta, bacon, chicken, tomatoes &
lettuce – cover & refrigerate at least 1 hour
(& up to 3 hours).
In large glass measuring cup place all
dressing ingredients – stir well to combine.
Refrigerate 1 hour.
When ready to serve: Pour dressing over
top of salad & toss to combine.
Serves 12


Baked Mac & Cheese

2 1/2 C. uncooked macaroni
2 1/2 T. flour
1 1/4 tsp. salt
pepper, to taste (about 1 tsp.)
4 T. butter, cut into thin slices
3 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 C. whole milk

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray oven-safe bowl or dish* with
nonstick cooking spray. Cook
pasta accordg. to pkg. directions;
drain. Mix all dry ingredients together.
Place half of cooked macaroni in
prepared bowl. Sprinkle half of flour
mixture over top & top with half of
butter slices. Sprinkle 1 1/2 C. cheese
on top – repeat. Pour milk over all.
Cover with foil & bake 35  minutes.
Remove foil & bake 10 more minutes.
Serve hot.

*You can make this in a 9 X 13″ or
large oven-proof bowl.


Picnic Fried Chicken
(can be overnight recipe)

1 broiler/fryer chicken (3 lb) cut up
3/4 – 1 C. buttermilk*

1 1/2 – 2 C. all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 T. paprika
1/4 tsp. ground sage
1/4 tsp. ground thyme
1/8 tsp. baking powder
oil – for frying

Pat chicken pieces with paper towels;
place in large flat dish. Pour buttermilk
over chicken; cover & allow to soak
at least 1 hour or overnight in fridge.
Combine coating ingredients in large
ziplock plastic bag. Add chicken pieces,
one at a time, shake to coat well. Lay
coated pieces on waxed paper 15
minutes to allow coating to dry (will
cling better in frying).
In Dutch oven or other deep skillet,
heat 1/2 inch oil over medium heat
to 350 degrees F. Fry chicken, uncovered,
7-8 minutes per side until coating is
dark golden brown & meat is no longer
pink, turning occasionally. Drain on
paper towels. Serves 6

*If you don’t have buttermilk – pour
1 T. lemon juice or vinegar into a 1
Cup measuring cup. Add enough  milk
to reach desired amount (recipe calls
for 3/4 – 1 C. buttermilk). Stir mixture
& let stand 5 minutes – now you have
buttermilk (sour milk).

Balsamic 3-Bean Salad

2 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed/
cut into 2″ pieces
1/2 C. balsamic vinaigrette
1/4 C. sugar
1 clove garlic,minced
3/4 tsp. salt
2 (16 oz, ea) cans kidney beans;
2 (15 oz, ea) cans cannellini beans,
4 fresh basil leaves, torn

Fill a large pot or bowl with ice water.
Fill a Dutch oven 3/4ths full of water –
bring to a boil. Add green beans – cook,
uncovered, 3-6 minutes until crisp-tender.
Drain & immediately drop into ice water.
In large bowl whisk vinaigrette, sugar, garlic &
salt until sugar is dissolved. Add canned & green
beans – toss to coat. Refrigerate, covered, at
least 4 hours. Stir in basil just before serving.
Serves 12 (3/4 C. each)


Southern Pineapple Cake

2 C. flour
2 C. sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 (20 oz) can crushed pineapple
with juice

1/2 C. butter
2/3 C. evaporated milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 C. sugar
1 C. chopped pecans or walnuts
1 C. coconut flakes

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl mix flour, sugar, baking soda,
eggs, vanilla & pineapple (with juice).
Beat until well combined – pour
into prepared pan & bake 40-45
minutes until golden brown.
(while cake is baking)
Heat butter, evap. milk, vanilla &
sugar in medium saucepan until it
begins to boil over medium-high heat.
Stir in nuts & coconut; continue cooking
on medium heat about 5 minutes,
stirring constantly. (mixture will thicken
slightly). Remove baked cake from oven &
poke holes all over the top using a wooden
chopstick or tines of a large serving fork.
Spread topping evenly over top of warm
cake & allow to cool.



Supposed to be a super hot day today:
sunny & high near 94 (heat index as
high as 105 degrees F.) – not planning
on going anywhere or doing anything
strenuous so I’ll be (happily) inside my
air-conditioned house knitting/reading/
playing computer word games or napping!
(Ah, the strenuous life of a retired grandma!)

Hope you have a COOL, relaxing day!




Almost Holiday time!

You can always tell when a holiday is coming by the amount of RECIPES I get sent to my email! Since the Fourth of July is coming up quickly, I thought I’d start posting recipes for those of you who might be holding picnics, pot lucks, cookouts, etc.


Crockpot Brownie Pudding Cake

1 C. flour
1 1/4 C. sugar
1/4 C. baking cocoa
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 C. oil
1 T. vanilla
3 large egg whites
2 large eggs
1/4 C. milk chocolate chips, melted
garnish – powdered sugar

In a bowl mix together flour, sugar,
cocoa & salt. In a separate large bowl
stir oil, vanilla, egg whites & eggs
until well blended. Gently pour flour
mixture into egg mixture – stir until
completely combined. Stir in melted
chocolate. Spray insides of crockpot
with nonstick cooking spray; pour
batter into crockpot. Place 3-4 paper
towels over top of crockpot & place
lid on. Cook on Low 2 hours (sides
should be set, middle should be soft).
Leave lid on, turn off heat & let cake
stand about 30 minutes. Serve
sprinkled with powdered sugar.
Serves 8


Bacon/Avocado Salad

3/4 C. olive oil
1/4 C. red wine vinegar
4 tsp. sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 bunch romaine (about 12 C.)
3/4 lb. bacon strips, cooked/crumbled
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 medium red onion, halved/thinly
3 medium ripe avocados, peeled/cubed
2 T. lemon juice
1 C. crumbled Gorgonzola or Feta cheese

Place first 6 ingredients in a jar with a tight-
fitting lid; shake well until blended –
refrigerate until ready to serve.
In large bowl combine romaine, bacon,
tomatoes & onion. Toss avocados with
lemon juice & add to salad; sprinkle with
cheese. Serve with dressing, shaking to
blend again if needed. Serves 10


Patio Pinto (beans)

1/2 lb. bacon strips, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 (15 oz, ea) cans pinto beans,
4 (8 oz, ea) cans tomato sauce
2 (4 oz, ea) cans chopped green chilies
1/3 C. brown sugar, packed
1 tsp. chili powder
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium
heat until crisp, stirring occasionally. Remove
with slotted spoon; drain on paper towels.
Reserve 2 T. drippings in pan (discard the rest).
Add onion to drippings; cook & stir over
medium heat 6-8 minutes until tender. Add
garlic; cook 1 minute. Stir in beans, tomato
sauce, green chilies, brown sugar & seasonings.
Sprinkle top with bacon. Bake, covered,
60-70 minutes until heated through.
Serves 10

NOTE: Freezer option:
Freeze cooled bean mixture in freezer
containers. To use: partially thaw in
fridge overnight. Heat through in a saucepan,
stirring occasionally & adding a little water,
if necessary.


Spectacular Overnight Coleslaw

1 medium head cabbage, shredded
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 C. chopped green pepper
1/2 C. chopped sweet red pepper
1/2 C. sliced pimiento-stuffed olives
1/2 C. white wine vinegar
1/2 C. canola oil
1/2 C. sugar
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. celery seed
1 tsp. mustard seed

Combine cabbage, onion, peppers &
olives in a large bowl. In large saucepan,
mix remaining ingredients & bring to boil;
cook & stir 1 minute. Pour mixture over
vegetables & stir gently. Cover &
refrigerate overnight – mix well before
serving. Serves 16


4-ingredient Sweet & Sticky Ribs

3 lb. pork baby back ribs
4 C. apple juice
1/4 – 1/2 C. apple cider (OR)
apple cider vinegar*
1 C. BBQ sauce

Remove membrane that covers
underside of ribs – cut slab in
half. Pour apple juice & vinegar
into crockpot. Place ribs in liquid,
meat side down. Cover & cook on
Low – cook 8-10 hours (or High
5-7 hours). Remove ribs to a
baking dish & cover on both
sides with BBQ sauce. Place under
broiler 5 minutes until sauce is
bubbling & starts to caramelize.
Serve immediately. Serves 4

* If you don’t want to add the
vinegar, replace it with more apple


Warm Tomato/Mozzarella Dip

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 C. (Kraft) Olive Oil Vinaigrette-
1 1/2 C. cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 T. chopped fresh thyme
1/4 C. finely shredded Parmesan cheese
32 flatbread crackers

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Mix cream cheese, mozzarella & 2 T.
vinaigrette until blended; spread onto
bottom of 9″ pie plate. Top with tomatoes &
drizzle with remaining vinaigrette – sprinkle
with thyme. Bake 13 minutes until tomatoes
are softened & dip is heated through. Sprinkle
top with Parmesan; bake 2 minutes until
melted. Serve with crackers.
Serves 16 (2 T. dip & 2 crackers each)

Spinach Pasta Salad

2 C. spinach, broken into pieces
or chopped
1 C. cooked, chopped ham (or
any meat you want)
1/2 C. chopped green onion
1/2 C. chopped/peeled cucumber
2 boiled eggs, chopped
1 1/2 C. uncooked pasta (cooked
al dente, accordg. to pkg. directions &
1 large tomato, chopped


1/4 C. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 T. white vinegar
1 T. white granulated sugar
1 tsp. dried basil (or 1 T. fresh,

Mix together salad ingredients in large
bowl. Combine dressing ingredients &
mix with a spoon – toss salad & dressing
together. Serves 6-8

NOTE: You can also add other ingredients
like: corn, peas, carrots, peppers


Campfire S’More Nacho Grill Packets

6 whole graham crackers, broken into

pieces (6 whole = 2 C.)

1 1/2 C. miniature marshmallows
1 1/2 C. crumbled fudge brownies
3/4 C. milk chocolate morsels
nonstick cooking spray
1/3 C. creamy peanut butter
Reddi-Whip spray whipped topping
(or Cool Whip or whipped cream)

Preheat gas grill for medium heat.
Stir graham crackers, marshmallows,
brownies & morsels in large bowl.
Place one 18″ X 18″ piece of heavy
duty foil on counter; spray with
nonstick cooking spray. Place mixture
in center of foil; drop dollops of
peanut butter evenly over top. Double
fold top & ends of foil, leaving space
for steam to gather. Place packet on
grate & cover grill. Grill 5 minutes until
marshmallows & morsels melt. Carefully
open packet & top with Reddi-Whip or
other topping. Serve immediately.
Serves 6

NOTE: You can also bake packet in oven:
400 degrees F. place packet in a shallow
pan & bake 10 minutes until marshmallows
& morsels melt.



I tried to copy the photo from our local
newspaper (from Log Cabin Day) but
although I can copy to an email, I can’t
copy to my blog site (will have to ask
my husband for help with that one).

Our weather is getting much warmer
AND much wetter! It rained, on & off,
all day yesterday; it’s supposed to be
clear today with a high of 85. Starting
Friday it’s highs of 91, 96, 90 and 87 –
glad I won’t be OUTSIDE on those days!

Not much going on around here; it’s nice
to finally have a ‘nothing special’ week
for a change.

Hope you are enjoying your day!



The Day AFTER!

Today is my ‘rest & recuperate’ day (or was supposed to be) – ended up babysitting from 11:15 – 2:30 (NOT bad, actually). My sweet 1 yr 4 mo. old grandson never took a nap – nope – NEVER! He had lots of fun playing & wrestling with Grandma but no nap. Oh well – not my problem now, right?

Yesterday was Log Cabin Day and it finally turned out nice – the beginning of the event was filled with rain to the point where my friend (the President of the historical society) moved me from under a nice big pine tree to a nice DRY tent where the Local Authors were located! In all TEN lovely ladies from my group showed up to knit/crochet & chat – I was very happy with those numbers considering the week before I had only expected it to be me and one other lady! Gave out a few business cards for my group and chatted with lots of lovely people. Our local newspaper took a photo of me with my friend (and local author); had had asked me if I would be willing to take a few photos of him in his World War I flyer’s uniform in front of an antique train and it’s station. As we were walking back the photographer stopped us and wanted to take our photo (so far it hasn’t showed up on line, but if it does I’ll post it here).  I brought my camera but totally FORGOT to get it out and take any pictures! UGH!


Crockpot Chocolate/Peanut Butter
Lava Cake

1 C. flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 C. milk
1/4 tsp. salt
2 T. melted butter
1 tsp. vanilla
3 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 C. brown sugar

Lava Sauce:
3/4 C. brown sugar
1/4 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 C. creamy peanut butter
2 C. boiling water

Spray inside of crockpot with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl mix flour,
baking powder, cocoa & salt. Mix in
brown sugar, milk, melted butter &
vanilla – mix until combined (batter
will be thick) spread on bottom of

Lava Sauce:
In a bowl whisk together peanut butter
& boiling water; add in cocoa & brown
sugar – whisk until smooth then pour
on top of batter – DO NOT STIR
Cover & cook on Low 2 1/2 hours until
set. Center will be slightly puffy. Remove
crock & let cake stand 15-30 minutes
before serving.
To serve: scoop cake from pot then top
with peanut butter lava sauce.
Serves 6


Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

4 oz. uncooked macaroni
4 oz. smoked ham, diced
1 1/2 oz. mild Cheddar cheese, diced
1 C. diced fresh pineapple
1/2 C. diced pimientos
1/2 C. diced red onion
1/2 C. diced celery
1/2 C. mayonnaise
2 T. sweet pickle relish
1/2 tsp. dried ginger
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
salt/black pepper, to taste

Cook macaroni accordg. to pkg. directions;
rinse & drain. Stir remaining ingredients
with cooked macaroni & refrigerate
several hours before serving. Serves 8


Roasted Party Potatoes

1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 1/2 lb. red skinned potatoes,
washed/cut into 1-inch chunks
2 T. vegetable oil
3/4 C. French-fried onions

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray large rimmed baking
sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
In small bowl combine paprika,
garlic & onion powders, salt/pepper –
mix well. In large bowl toss potatoes
with oil. Add spices & toss until
potatoes are well coated. Spread
potatoes in single layer on prepared
sheet. Bake 45-50 minutes until fork-
tender, turning potatoes occasionally.
Place potatoes in a serving bowl &
toss with French-fried onions. Serve
immediately. Serves 5


Grilled Steak & Pineapple Wraps

3/4 C. pineapple juice
1/2 C. soy sauce
1/4 C. vegetable oil
1 tsp. fresh ginger grated
or finely minced
2 cloves garlic, grated or finely
2 tsp. red chili paste
1 lb. beef flank steak
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
1 green bell pepper, seeded/
cut into quarters
1 red bell pepper, seeded/
cut into quarters
1 medium onion, sliced into 1/4″
thick slices
4 slices fresh pineapple,
1/4″ thick/peeled
8 (6 inch) flour tortillas, warmed
chopped cilantro (optional)

In medium bowl combine pineapple
juice, soy sauce, oil, garlic, ginger &
chili paste (reserve 1/2 C. of this
mixture for grilling). Place steak
in ziplock bag & add marinade.
Refrigerate 3-4 hours.

Preheat grill for medium heat. Remove
steak from ziplock bag & season with
salt/pepper – add steak to grill & cook
7 minutes. Turn steak & cook 5 minutes
or to desired doneness. Brush peppers,
onion slices & pineapple with reserved
marinade. Add to grill, cook about 4
minutes per side or until tender. Baste
with reserved marinade as desired.
Remove from grill; let steak rest 5
minutes, covered.

Cut steak, peppers, onions & pineapple
into thin slices. Slice steak against the
grain when cutting; remove the core
from pineapple (if desired). Divide
steak, peppers, onion & pineapple
evenly between tortillas – garnish with
chopped cilantro, if using & serve.
Serves 4


Parmesan Garlic Grilled Corn

1/4 C. margarine
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper
4 medium ears fresh sweet corn,
husks removed.
3 T. grated Parmesan cheese

Spray cold grate of gas grill with nonstick
cooking spray. Preheat grill for medium
Combine margarine, garlic salt & pepper in
small bowl. Grill corn 12-15 minutes until
tender & browned lightly, turning
occasionally. Remove corn from grill &
brush with margarine mixture; sprinkle
entire ear of corn with Parm. cheese & serve.
Serves 4

Frozen Strawberry/Lemonade Dessert

1 quart (approx 4 C.) strawberries, hulled
1/2 gallon (approx. 8 C.) vanilla ice cream
1 (12 oz) container frozen lemonade
concentrate, thawed

Blend strawberries in food processor or
blender until pureed. In large bowl mix
pureed strawberries, ice cream & lemon-
ade – mix until well blended. Pour into a
freezer-safe container with a lid. Cover &
freeze at least 2 hours before serving.
(If desired, serve topped with whipped
topping)  Serves 6



The good thing about this week is: I don’t have
anything special (out of the regular) going on!
I’m almost finished with another library book;
working on 2 baby blankets – other than that,
I’m FREE!!! YAY! I don’t mind doing special
events or going to extra events/things but it’s
nice when I look on my calendar & find it mostly
EMPTY for the week!

Enjoy your day!



It’s getting closer!

This coming Sunday is LOG CABIN DAY! Just got home from the location after asking a lot of questions. In years past (as I explained in a previous post) the event was 2 days, 10 – 5 p.m. but, due to lack of any volunteers to man/help out, they’ve had to cut it to ONE DAY 12 – 5 p.m. Sad, but what can ya do!? Because of the changes quite a few presenters/demonstrators refused to participate because it takes a lot of time to set up/take down their things (like the Civil War Presenters who came in cloth tents with all the ‘old fashioned’ camping equipment. Just found out today that the Surveyor who used to be right next to our location is not coming this year – that would leave just our little group all by ourselves under a pavillion – more an ‘after thought’ than a part of the event so I went to ask if we could move ‘closer to the action’. We will now be under a HUGE pine tree – there’s enough room for 6-8 (maybe more) folding chairs (they have the lower branches cut so you can stand up under it). I’m hoping that will work for enough shade (I burn terribly in direct sun) – we’ll see. Had to ask a few other questions for a few of my friends about parking/handicapped parking, etc. All looks like it’s going well: FORECAST for SUNDAY:

Partly cloudy, high 76 so that should work (plus we get a good breeze there, too!)


Crockpot Chocolate Caramel Brownies

1 (18.3 oz) box brownie mix
1 (16 oz) tube chocolate frosting
3/4 C. caramel ice cream topping,
1/2 c. chopped walnuts (optional)

Spray crockpot insides with nonstick
cooking spray. Mix brownie mix accordg.
to pkg. directions & spoon into crockpot,
spreading evenly. Drizzle a little less than
a 1/2 C. caramel topping over top & swirl
in with a knife. Cover top of crockpot
opening with a few paper towels (to catch
moisture). Cover & cook on High 2-3 hours.
Let cool. In a microwave-safe bowl mix frosting
& remaining caramel topping. Heat 45 seconds;
stir & drizzle over brownies. Sprinkle walnuts
on top (if using) & serve. Serves 12

NOTE: If you don’t have a microwave-you can
just stir the frosting & topping until smooth in
a bowl & spread over cooled brownies gently.


Minty Watermelon-Cucumber Salad

8 C. cubed/seeded watermelon
2 English cucumbers, halved
lengthwise & sliced
6 green onions, chopped
1/4 C. minced fresh mint
1/4 C. balsamic vinegar
1/4 C. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper

In large bowl combine watermelon,
cucumbers, green onions & mint. In
small bowl whisk remaining ingredients;
pour over salad & toss to coat. Serve
immediately or refrigerate, covered,
up to 2 hours before serving.
Serves 16 (3/4 C. each)


Cabbage & Sausage Foil Packets
(grill or oven)

1 lb. Polish Sausage, cut into 1″ pieces
(or your favorite smoked sausage)
1/2 head cabbage, cut into 1/2″ wedges
20 small potatoes, quartered
1 small onion, sliced
garlic butter – store bought or home made
salt/pepper, to taste
4 ice cubes

sour cream, topping, if desired
NOTE: If you are concerned that your
foil packets may leak, double wrap
them in foil & seal

Preheat grill to 400 degrees F.
Cut four 18″ X 12″ sheets foil – spray
well with nonstick cooking spray.
Divide cabbage, potatoes, onion onto
foil sheets – add 1 ice cube to each
mound. Evenly divide sausage between
packets & top with 1-2 T. garlic butter,
per packet – salt/pepper, to taste
Seal each [packet well & place on grill;
Grill 50 minutes, flipping packets every
15 minutes. Allow to rest 10 minutes
before serving. Serve with sour cream,
if desired.
Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Prepare packets as described above & place
in oven 35-40 minutes until potatoes are
fork-tender. Potato sizes can vary, you will
want just over 1 C. diced/cubed potato per
serving.  Serves 4


Macaroni Coleslaw

1 (7 oz) pkg. macaroni
1 (14 oz) pkg. coleslaw mix
2 medium onions, finely chopped
2 ribs celery, finely chopped
1 medium cucumber, finely chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, finely
1 (8 oz) can whole water chestnuts,

1 1/2 C. Miracle Whip
1/3 C. sugar
1/4 C. cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Cook macaroni accordg. to pkg. directions;
drain & rinse under cold water. Transfer
to a large bowl; add coleslaw mix, onions,
celery, cucumber, green pepper & water
chestnuts. In small bowl whisk dressing
ingredients – pour over salad & toss to
coat. Cover & refrigerate at least 1 hour.
Serves 16 (3/4 C. each)


Cold Corn Dip

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sour cream
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 (8 oz) pkg. Mexican-style finely-
shredded Four Cheese (Kraft)
1 1/2 C. fresh corn kernels
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chilies,
4 green onions, chopped
3 T. chopped fresh cilantro

Mix first 4 ingredients in medium bowl
until blended. Add remaining ingredients;
mix well. Refrigerate 1 hour until chilled.


Chicken Enchilada Bake

4 1/2 C. shredded rotisserie
1 (28 oz) can green enchilada sauce
1 1/4 C. (10 oz) sour cream
9 (6 inch) corn tortillas, cut into
1 1/2 inch pieces
4 C. shredded Monterey Jack

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Layer
half of each:
chicken, enchilada sauce, sour
cream, tortillas & cheese – repeat
layers. Cover with foil & bake
40 minutes. Uncover & bake until
bubbly, about 10 minutes. Let
stand 15 minutes before serving.
Serves 8-10

Prepare casserole – cover with foil &
freeze (unbaked). To use: partially thaw
in refrigerator overnight. Remove from
fridge 30 minutes before baking. Preheat
oven 375 degrees F. & bake casserole as
directed above, increasing time as
necessary to heat through & for a
thermometer inserted into center to
read 165 degrees F.


Eggless Potato Salad
4 C. potatoes, boiled & chopped
1/4 C. chopped dill pickles
1 T. chopped fresh basil
1 can sliced olives
1/2 C. chopped celery
1/2 C. chopped onion
1/4 C. chopped radishes
2 C. sour cream
1 T. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. fresh horseradish
1 T. chopped anchovies (optional)
Place all vegetables in large mixing
bowl. Add mustard, sour cream, horse-
radish & mix together. Break up 
anchovies & mix into salad (if using).
Chill at least 1 hour before serving.
Serves 8-10

Crockpot Brown Sugar/Pineapple
Pork Roast

6 lb. pork shoulder butt roast
1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks
1/2 C. brown sugar, packed
Place roast in crockpot, fat side up.
Pour pineapple chunks & juices over
roast. Sprinkle brown sugar over top.
Cover & cook on Low 4-6 hours, making
sure roast is fully cooked before serving.
Serve with cooking juices. Serves 8

No-Bake Oatmeal Caramel Pudding

2 C. sugar
3/4 C. butter
2/3 C. evaporated milk
2-3.4 oz. pkg. instant caramel
pudding mix
3 1/2 C. old fashioned oats
1/4 C. mini chocolate chips
1/2 C. chocolate toffee baking bits
Line a flat rimmed baking sheet
with parchment paper. In a 
saucepan, melt butter, sugar & milk;
bring to boil then remove from heat.
in large bowl whisk oats & pudding
mix. Add butter/sugar mixture & 
stir to coat. Let mixture stand & cool
8-10 minutes then stir in choc. toffee
bits. Drop dough by tablespoon onto
prepared sheets; sprinkle tops with
mini chocolate chips. Refrigerate
cookies 30 minutes - 1 hour to set.
Keep any leftovers refrigerated.
Makes approximately 24 cookies

Hope you are enjoying the beginnings of Summer-
it's a bit overcast today and around 67 degrees out
(at least it's not sweltering!).



It’s Monday! (and I’m now officially SEVENTY! WOW!)

(He,hehehe – my guess on what 70 looks like!)

My cousin just called me – he & I share the same age – he’s 2 weeks older than I am. He & I grew up as ‘only’ children, his family lived in Iowa so every Christmas we’d get a card with a photo of him on a sled, or next to a snowman with the caption: “Here’s Dougie on his new sled”after which MY parents would do the same: “Here’s Penny with her new sled” – UGH! Anyway, he’s like my brother – we keep in close touch so I call him first to wish him a Happy Birthday, then he reciprocates 2 weeks later! Husband & I are trying to solidify just when we are going out for my birthday dinner (at oldest son’s girlfriend’s restaurant) – our older grandson’s 12th birthday is this Saturday and now I’m hearing THEY want to do a birthday dinner for him Thursday night (that was the day I was hoping husband & I would be able to go out . . . oh well, we’ll see). My prime rib might be delayed a bit.


Strawberry Pie w/ Chocolate Crumb Crust

1 pkg. (about 14 oz) Oreo cookies
3 T. butter, melted
2 T. corn starch
3/4 C. sugar
1 3/4 C. water
1 (3 oz) pkg. strawberry Jell-0
2 pints fresh strawberries, washed/halved
Cool Whip, thawed (optional – for serving)

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Place cookies & butter in a food processor –
process until fine crumbs form. Pat mixture
into bottom & up sides of a pie plate. Bake
10 minutes – let cool.
In small saucepan, bring corn starch, sugar &
water to a boil; remove from heat & stir
in Jell-O until dissolved. Arrange strawberries
in cooled crust. Pour strawberry Jell-O mixture
over strawberries. Cover pie & refrigerate
at least 1 hour until set. Top with Cool Whip
& serve. Refrigerate any leftovers. Serves 8

(recipe: Kroger flyer)

Best Ambrosia Salad

1 (29 oz) can fruit cocktail, drained
1 (8 oz) can pineapple tidbits, drained
1 (11 oz) can mandarin oranges,
1/2 C. maraschino cherries, drained/
1 (1 oz) box cheesecake-flavor pudding mix
8 oz. sour cream
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
1 C. miniature marshmallows

Drain all fruit (if fruit is packed in syrup,
rinse in cold water & drain.) Combine
fruit cocktail, pineapple, mandarin
oranges & cherries in a large bowl. Sprinkle
top with cheesecake-flavored pudding mix
& stir to coat. Add in sour cream & Cool
Whip – stir well. Fold in marshmallows.
Chill at least 1 hour before serving.


Sweet ‘n Sour Glazed Pork Chops

32 oz. bone-in pork chops (3/4″ – 1″
kosher salt/ground black pepper
2 T. unsalted butter
1/4 C. balsamic vinegar
3 T. honey
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes

kosher salt/ground black pepper
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Season chops with salt/pepper, to taste.
Melt butter in large oven-proof skillet over
medium-high heat – add chops & sear on
both sides until golden brown, 2-3 minutes.
Place in oven & roast 8-10 minutes (until an
internal temperature of 140 degrees F. is

Sweet n’ sour glaze:

Combine balsamic vinegar, honey, garlic,
oregano, basil, thyme & red pepper flakes
in a small saucepan over medium heat.
Season with salt/pepper, to taste. Bring
to a boil; reduce heat & simmer until
slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
Serve chops immediately with glaze.
Serves 4


Cheesy Bacon/Yellow Squash

4-5 medium yellow squash, sliced
into round pieces (unpeeled)
4 slices bacon, cooked crisp/
crumbled (*save drippings)
1/3 C. olive oil
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried basil (or 1 1/2 tsp.
fresh, chopped)
1/2 tsp. dried parsley (or 1 1/2 tsp.
fresh, chopped)
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
2 tsp. sugar
1 T. bacon drippings
1/4 C. chopped onion (poster
used purple – can use white or
green onions)
1 C. cracker crumbs (could use
Ritz/crushed or Cheese-it’s/
1 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
(or your choice of flavor)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 2-3 qt. baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Place
sliced squash in a bowl. In
another bowl combine & whisk
olive oil, black pepper, salt, basil,
parsley, garlic, sugar, bacon drippings
& chopped onion – pour over squash
& toss to cover all squash. Spread a
layer of squash in prepared dish; sprinkle
on half the cracker crumbs, half bacon &
half shredded cheese. Top with another
layer of squash & repeat layer. Cover with
foil & bake 50-55 minutes until squash
is done. Serves 6-8


Avocado, Orange & Spinach salad

1 (10 oz) can Ro*Tel diced tomatoes &
green chilies, drained
2 T. honey
1 T. seasoned rice vinegar
1 (9 oz) pkg. baby spinach leaves
1 orange, peeled & chopped
1 medium ripe avocado, pitted,
peeled & chopped

Combine drained tomatoes, honey
& vinegar in small bowl; mix well.
Toss spinach with tomato mixture,
orange & avocado in large bowl.
Serve immediately. Serves 4

(recipe: readyseteat)

Crockpot Taco Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 (29 oz) can black beans, drained/
1 (16 oz) jar salsa
1 (10.5 oz) can tomatoes w/green chilies
(like Ro-Tel)
2 T. taco seasoning mix
8 oz. cream cheese cut into cubes

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick spray. Place chicken in bottom
of crockpot; add beans, salsa, tomatoes
& taco seasoning on top of chicken & stir
to combine. Cover & cook on Low
6-8 hours. During last 30 minutes of
cooking time add cream cheese & cover.
Cook until cream cheese is melted.
Serves 4


Homemade Ice Cream in a Baggie

2 T. granulated sugar
1 C. Half & Half (or light cream)
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. coarse salt/canning salt (or table salt)
gallon-sized zip lock bag
pint-sized zip lock bag
Mix sugar, Half & Half & vanilla together. Pour
into pint-sized ziplock bag, make SURE it seals
tight. Fill gallon-sized ziplock bag halfway with ice;
pour salt over ice. Place cream-filled bag into ice
filled bag & seal. MAKE SURE BAG IS SEALED
TIGHTLY. Start shaking; shake about 5 inutes
(or 8 minutes if you use heavy cream). Open the
gallon-sized bag; check to see if ice cream is hard;
if not, keep shaking. Once ice cream is done, quickly
run the closed pint-sized baggie under cold water
to quickly clean the salt off the baggie. Open baggie,
insert spoon & enjoy!

(recipe: Facebook)
I don't have any real plans for today - got notified
grandson's baseball game is this evening at 6 -
it's really REALLY hot out (90 degrees F. with a
heat index of 99 degrees F). Husband wasn't
happy to hear we might be sitting outside (we
might not end up going, depends on husband's

Am planning on making a big meatloaf for dinner.

Our gas prices are jumping around AGAIN:
A few days ago they were at $3.09/9 and 
now they're back to $2.89/9 - YAY! Crazy.

Was SUPER tired of working on one of the
yellow baby blankets (yarn was heavy,
which made blanket in my lap VERY heavy) -
decided yesterday I'd had enough so I 
finished it (early). It's wide enough to use the
width as the length, so that's what I did:

Hope you have a GREAT day - stay COOL &
remember to drink lots of liquids - stay




Today is my: “Well Earned REST!” It’s been a VERY busy/crazy/hectic week and I’m SOoooooo glad I don’t have anything else to do today except rest & recuperate! Brief summary of yesterday (just as an example): Ended up doing an un-planned babysitting from 9:15-12:30 for starters (son had a good reason/job related, so I said OK); run home & grab husband – we drive an hour to the store where we bought my electric piano, to buy a BETTER foot/sustain pedal (the one that came with it was really cheap plastic – very light – it kept sticking to the bottom of my foot when I played!), left there & went to lunch at a local coney place (we used to think they were really good but after yesterday have changed our minds – they were mediocre, to say the least). Got home & had to chop 2 big onions for the upcoming (in 2 hours) last special needs group Gym Night. Rested for a very short time, drove there – (let’s see, make this short): cut a huge watermelon, cooked hot dogs to feed about 40 people, helped serve/also served ice cream, cleaned up & drove home – got home around 9:30 VERY TIRED! SOoooo glad today is free of anything but cooking dinner!

Tomorrow is Father’s Day so I’ve put together some recipes that might help out for that event:


Millionaire’s Pie

1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks,
drained & blotted dry on paper towels
1 C. chopped pecans
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
2 T. fresh lemon juice
2 C. Cool Whip, thawed
1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker
pie crust

In large bowl combine pineapple, pecans,
sweetn’d cond. milk & lemon juice; mix
well. Gently fold in Cool Whip & pour
into prepared crust. Freeze at least 6
hours or overnight. Allow pie to thaw
about 5 minutes before serving then
freeze any leftover pie.  Serves 6

NOTE: You can top the pie with extra
pecans & a drizzle of caramel ice cream
sauce for an ‘extra millionaire’ presentation.


Crockpot Chili Cheese Casserole

1 (9 1/4 oz) bag Fritos corn chips
2 (15 oz, ea) cans chili
3 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1 (16 oz) container sour cream
1/2 C. diced white onion

extra Fritos corn chips – for garnish,
if desired

Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick
cooking spray. Sprinkle 1 1/2 C. Fritos
on bottom of crockpot – spoon chili
over top. Sprinkle half onions on top
then half the cheese. Spread all of
sour cream on top & top with rest of
cheese & onions. Cover & cook on High
2 hours. Serve with additional Fritos on
top (for garnish). Serves 8

Crockpot Pepper Jack Chicken

3-4 lb. boneless skinless chicken thighs
or breasts
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. cumin
salt/pepper, to taste
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen whole green beans
1 bell pepper, seeded/sliced
8 oz. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/4 C. butter

2 C. shredded Pepper Jack cheese

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray.
Place chicken in bottom of crockpot &
season with garlic powder/onion powder,
cumin, salt/pepper. Layer green beans,
mushrooms & pepper on top  – season
again with salt/pepper & top with butter.
Cover & cook on Low 4-6 hours until
chicken is shreddable when stirred. Stir
chicken until shredded & top with cheese.
Cover & cook on High until cheese melts.
Serves 6


Summer Vegetable Cobbler

2 T. butter
3 small zucchini, sliced
1 small sweet red pepper,
finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T. flour
1 C. milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Biscuit Topping:

1 C. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3 T. cold butter
1/4 C. shredded Parmesan cheese
3 T. minced fresh basil
2/3 C. milk

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray 8 inch square baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray.
In large skillet heat butter on
medium-high heat. Add zucchini,
red pepper & onion – cook & stir
10-12 minutes until zucchini is
crisp-tender. Add garlic, cook 1
minute more. In small bowl whisk
flour, milk, salt/pepper – stir into
veggies. Bring to a boil, stirring
constantly; cook & stir 2-3 minutes
until sauce is thickened. Spoon into
prepared dish.
In small bowl whisk flour, baking
powder & salt – cut in butter until
mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Stir in cheese & basil; add milk, stir
just until moistened. Drop by rounded
tablespoonfuls over filling.
Bake 25-30 minutes until filling is
bubbly & biscuits are golden brown.
Serves 4


“Slider Casserole”

2 lb. ground beef
1 box dry onion soup mix
(comes with 2 pkgs – you will
use both)
2 (12 oz, ea) tubes crescent rolls
8-10 slices American cheese
mustard, to taste
dill pickles, chopped – to taste

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray. In a
skillet brown ground beef; crumble
& mix with both pkgs. onion soup
mix. Drain meat into a colander;
using paper towels, press down on
mixture & squeeze out as much
liquid as possible. Unroll one tube
rolls into prepared dish, flatten
slightly to seal seams & cover the
bottom – top with ground beef then
top with cheese slices. Top with pickles
& mustard (to taste). Unroll other
tube rolls over top, sealing seams &
covering contents in dish. Bake 15-20
minutes until top is golden brown &
cheese is melted. Cut into squares &
serve with additional condiments,
if desired. Serves 8


Bacon-wrapped Chicken Roll-ups

3 large chicken breasts (about 2 lb)
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese
22 strips pre-cooked bacon, divided
4 green onions, minced
3 mushrooms, minced
3/4 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 T. dried parsley

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large gallon-sized zip-lock bag
place 1 chicken breast. Seal bag
securely & pound chicken to
flatten (you want it to be as thin
as you can get it – about 1/4
inch thick). Cut breast in half &
repeat with other 2 breasts
(pound & cut in two). Cut 4
slices bacon finely. In a medium
microwaveable bowl place cream
cheese – microwave 30 seconds to
soften. Mix in green onions, minced
bacon & mushrooms along with
minced garlic, onion powder, parsley
& salt/pepper – stir to blend well.
Sprinkle a bit of salt & pepper over
each chicken breast; spoon about 2
T. cream cheese mixture onto each
flattened breast & roll up. Wrap 2-3
pieces of pre-cooked bacon around
each one. NOTE: if bacon is hard to
manipulate, place it on a plate &
microwave about 20 seconds to
make it more pliable. Lay chicken
rolls in prepared pan & bake,
uncovered, 30-40 minutes until
inside of chicken is cooked through
& is no longer pink. Remove from
oven & cover with foil. Allow to stand
5 minutes, then serve. Serves 6


Jalapeno Popper Pimento Cheese

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
8 oz. sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
2 T. hot pickled jalapeno peppers,
chopped well
1/3 C. mayonnaise
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
6 strips thick cut bacon, cooked/crumbled

In large microwaveable bowl place cream
cheese – microwave 30 seconds (it should
be mushy & stir-able, not melted – consistency
of mayonnaise). Add shredded Cheddar,
chopped jalapenos & mayonnaise – blend well.
Add cooked bacon & stir well. Store in tightly
covered jar – lasts 4 days refrigerated.


Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

1 1/4 C. sugar, divided
1 C. flour
1/2 C. cocoa, divided
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 C. milk
1/3 C. melted butter
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. brown sugar
1 1/4 C. boiling water

Whipped cream or Cool Whip-

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine 3/4 C. sugar, 1/4 C.
cocoa, flour, baking powder &
salt in a bowl. Add milk, butter &
vanilla; beat until smooth. Pour into
an ungreased 9 X 9″ baking dish. Stir
1/4 C. sugar, 1/2 C. brown sugar,
1/4 C. cocoa & sprinkle over top
of batter. Pour boiling water over top
& bake 35-40 minutes until center is
almost set (do not over bake). Let
stand 15 minutes. Serves 9
Serve with whipped cream or
Cool Whip



Ended up finishing one of the three baby
blankets and started a new one. New one
is using a multi-colored medium blue/white
twist – when knit it comes out almost looking
like light blue denim! 

Log Cabin Day is a week
(+ 1 day) away – my mind is still trying to wrap
around new things: moving my group to a new
location on the grounds (closer to the action),
taking less things with me (no longer transporting
our big sign, table covers, etc.) and hoping more
ladies will join me. I was getting a bit concerned
last week but now have seven ladies who have
said they’ll be there for either the day or part
of, so we’ll see.

Gas prices surprised me yesterday – was
expecting to see $2.89/9 (like the day
before) and was shocked at $3.09/9! Oh
well – not much choice, need it.

Hope you’re having a good day!



and here’s a NEW week – already!

I don’t know about you – but for me, time seems to be rushing by – EVERY week! Was able to attend a wedding on Saturday of my close friend’s granddaughter – it was lovely. Only one problem: it was raining, off & on all the way there! When I got to the church we were informed the bride REALLY wanted it to be an outside wedding, so we waited. (I didn’t know they had a gazebo all decorated and waiting). The rain let up and we walked this lovely garden path to the gazebo. Along the way there were people handing out clear garbage bags – they were to drape over our chairs because they didn’t have enough time to wipe them all down! HA! Got a few little drops during the ceremony, but for the most part, it went VERY nicely.  Reception decorations and food were on a “Country” theme – lots of lanterns, old window frames, tiny cactus plants on each table – food was totally ‘country’: pulled pork sandwiches, mashed potatoes, BBQ smoked pork & chicken, salad, corn muffins and something I hadn’t heard of before: mac & cheese with CORN in it! (they said it’s the ‘new’ thing – not for this woman…didn’t sound tempting). The cake was lovely – white with BLACK frosting flowers (another ‘new’ thing). Turns out the cake was flavored with Earl Gray English Breakfast tea & cream cheese frosting (not too sweet – interesting flavor). While we’re sitting there waiting for things to start (the actual EATING part) my friend (Bride’s grandma and her daughter) came over to say: “We heard you have some experience cutting cakes – would you cut the cake for us?” (ME??? Yes, I’ve cut MANY sheet cakes in my day for my special needs group – but not a multi-tiered cake!) I grabbed my other friend (leader of our special needs group) and told her she was going to be my “Plate Handler” – we got it done (cake was a little dry & kept falling apart as I sliced it, but people didn’t seem to mind – the cake was eaten!). That’s my interesting event for the weekend.


Easy Coconut Cream Pie

1 (rolled) refrigerated pie crust
(from a 14.1 oz pkg
2 C. milk
3 eggs
1 C. sweetened flaked coconut
1/2 C. sugar
6 T. flour
1 T. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1/8 tsp. salt
2 C. Cool Whip, thawed

Unroll pie crust & press into a 9-inch
pie plate – flute edges. Bake pie shell
accordg. to pkg. directions – let cool

In medium saucepan over medium
heat, whisk remaining ingredients
(except Cool Whip). Cook 5-7 minutes
until thickened – pour into pie shell.
Chill at least 4 hours or until set.
Spread Cool Whip over pie & serve
(OR) cover & keep chilled until ready
to serve. Serves 8

NOTE: You can also sprinkle 1/4 C.
toasted coconut on top of the pie
before serving.


Honey Mustard Chicken Salad

1 1/2 T. Dijon mustard
1 1/2 T. honey
1 1/2 T. cider vinegar
1 1/2 T. olive oil
1/4 tsp.
1/4 tsp. black pepper

1 chicken breast
1/2 T. oil
5 C. Romaine lettuce, roughly
10 cherry tomatoes
6 spears asparagus
1/2 ripe avocado, thinly sliced
1.5 oz. bacon, cooked/chopped

Place all dressing ingredients in a
jar with a lid & shake well.
Cut chicken in half horizontally;
sprinkle with salt/pepper – drizzle
2 tsp. dressing over chicken. Heat
a non-stick pan over high heat until
smoking. Add asparagus – cook 3
minutes until they are a little black
but still firm – remove from pan.
Add oil to skillet & cook chicken about
2 minutes per side until cooked through.
Transfer to a plate, cover loosely with foil
& let rest 5 minutes – slice thinly.
Place lettuce in a bowl; drizzle a bit of
dressing over lettuce & toss then transfer
to a serving platter. Top with cherry
tomatoes, asparagus, avocado & chicken.
Sprinkle with bacon & drizzle remaining
dressing over top. Serves 2


Smothered Green Beans

4-6 slices bacon
3 celery ribs, chopped
1 lb. fresh green beans,
1 onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded/
3 plum tomatoes, seeded/
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Cook bacon in large skillet until
crisp; remove & drain on paper
towels, reserving 2 T. drippings
in skillet. Crumble bacon. Cook
celery & next 3 ingredients in
hot drippings over medium-high
heat 10-12 minutes. Add tomatoes &
remaining 4 ingredients; cook 5
minutes until beans are tender,
stirring often; stir in crumbled
bacon. Serves 6


Crockpot Lemon Herbed Chicken
& Red Potatoes

4 bone-in chicken thighs
2 T. olive oil, divided
4 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 C. chicken broth
1 yellow onion, cut into
large chunks
1 lb. baby carrots
1 lb. red potatoes, cut into
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 T. dried oregano
1 tsp. lemon-pepper seasoning
3 T. fresh lemon juice

In large skillet over medium-high
heat add 1 T. olive oil. Pat chicken
dry using paper towels & place in
skillet. Let chicken brown 5 minutes;
using tongs, turn chicken over &
brown 5 minutes more on other side.
Remove & place on a plate. Add
garlic & saute 30 seconds; add chicken
broth. Place chicken in crockpot &
lightly salt/pepper it. Pour in juices,
garlic & browned bits from pan. Add
onions, carrots & potatoes. Sprinkle
with salt/pepper, oregano & lemon
pepper. Drizzle 1 T. olive oil on top
then drizzle lemon juice over. Cover
& cook on Low 4-6 hours until
chicken & veggies are cooked. Scoop
potatoes, carrots & chicken onto
serving plates. (NOTE: if you enjoy
crispy skin on chicken – stick chicken
under broiler a few minutes)
Serves 4


Tex-Mex Stuffed Peppers

1 C. instant white or brown rice,
cooked accordg to pkg. directions
2 tsp. olive oil
1/2 lb. ground beef
1 T. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1 (15 oz) can whole kernel corn,
1 (15 oz) can pink beans, drained/
1/2 C. sour cream
1/4 C. chopped fresh cilantro
4 large red or green bell peppers,
stem ends neatly cut out – seeded
(will be stuffing ‘standing up”)
1/2 C. shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray a shallow roasting pan with
nonstick cooking spray. Heat oil in
large skillet over medium heat; add
gr. beef & cook until no longer pink/
drain (about 5 minutes). Add chili
powder, cumin, oregano, garlic
powder, salt/pepper – cook 1 minute.
Add cooked rice, corn, beans & sour
cream – cook 1 minute to heat
through. Remove from heat & stir in
cilantro. Stuff peppers with beef
mixture & arrange peppers “standing
up” side-by-side in prepared pan. Top
with shredded cheese & bake until
peppers are soft & cheese is golden,
about 30 minutes. Serves 4


Fruity Spinach Salad

2-3 C. fresh spinach
1 C. strawberries, cut into
1 C. blueberries
1/2 C. walnut pieces
1 large apple, chopped
1 large pear, (cored)/

Combine all ingredients in large
bowl. (You can add a dressing
to salad or let each person
add their own dressing).
Serves 6

NOTE: You can add all kinds of
fruits & nuts: sliced kiwi, oranges,
bananas, almonds.

1-Pan Chicken & Summer Veggies

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken cutlets
2 tsp. dried basil
2 T. olive oil, divided

1 C. yellow squash, cut into 1″
1 C. green beans, cut into 2″ lengths
1/2 yellow onion, diced
2 ears corn-on-the-cob, cut off cobs
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 C. chicken broth
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
2 tsp. thyme leaves
1 1/2 C. cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 C. heavy cream
1/4 C. Parmesan cheese, shredded
pepper, to taste

Pat chicken dry & season each on both
sides with salt/pepper & dried basil. In
a large saute pan over medium-high heat
add 1 T. olive oil. Add as many cutlets as
will fit comfortably in pan without over-
crowding. Cook about 3 minutes until golden
brown on first side – flip & cook 2-3 minutes
more until just cooked through. Transfer to
a plate & cover with foil – repeat with
remaining chicken. After all chicken has
been cooked & removed from pan, add
yellow squash, green beans & onions to
skillet with remaining oil – reduce heat
to medium. Cook 3-4 minutes until soft
& beginning to brown. When veggies in
skillet are soft, add corn & garlic -cook
1 minute more, stirring frequently. Pour
chicken broth into skillet then stir to
scrape up anything sticking to bottom of
pan. Add salt, red pepper flakes & thyme –
cook 2 minutes until broth has reduced
by half. Reduce heat to Low & stir in
tomatoes & heavy cream; add cooked
chicken & any accumulated juice back
into skillet. Let simmer until chicken is
reheated & sauce has thickened to
desired consistency. Remove from heat,
sprinkle with Parm. cheese & black pepper –
serve immediately. Serves 4-6


Orange Creamsicle Pudding

1 (3 oz) pkg. orange Jell-O
1 C. boiling water
1 C. ice cold water
1 (3.5 oz) pkg. instant vanilla
pudding mix (reserve 1 T.)
3 C. heavy cream
3/4 C. powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla

In a large bowl combine Jell-O &
boiling water – stir until dissolved.
Stir in cold water & let stand 5
minutes. Beat in dry pudding mix
until thoroughly combined –
refrigerate 10 minutes. In large
bowl beat heavy cream, reserved
1 T. pudding mix, powdered sugar &
vanilla until stiff peaks form. Fold
half of whipped cream into Jell-O
mixture until thoroughly combined.
Divide half of pudding mixture into
6 parfait glasses or a serving bowl.
Layer evenly with remaining whippe
cream & top with remaining pudding
mixture. Refrigerate 1 hour until ready
to serve. Serves 6



One thing became apparent at the wedding –
it was overcast & chilly – I wore a light white
blouse (no sweater or covering). As I went
through the day I got to remembering a
shawl I knit about four years ago for a friend
who was getting married – maybe I could knit
one for me! I have a particular yarn in mind
(IF it’s still in my yarn stash – was gifted it
many years ago: very fine white – not sure
if it’s angora, but would make a very nice
shawl – if I still have it AND if there’s enough
of it!). I also began to peruse –
great place to find all kinds of handmade
items – YES, they have several very nice knit
white shawls for under $30.00 – we’ll see
where this is going. Don’t think I will be
needing it any time soon (no more weddings
this summer, that I know of!).

Today is very warm – 84 degrees F. and sunny;
middle son is considering going to the beach
to read & sun himself. (Yes, I could go, but being
VERY fair, I burn like a lobster after around 10
minutes in the sun WITH all kinds of sun blockers).
Years ago, when the boys were younger, people
would look at me like some sort of strange person
(YES – I’m strange, but in another way – hehehe)
because I would have a huge sun hat on, sun glasses,
my husband’s old white dress shirt with sleeves rolled
up a bit and a bit beach towel wrapped around my legs.
It worked for me! I’ve had enough very bad sun burns
in my day that I know better.

Hope you’re enjoying this mid-June day!



Every day’s an adventure!

Life never ceases to amaze me – last night was oldest grandson’s last Viola concert – on the way to the concert my husband pushed the button on my van for the automatic window to go down – button jammed/window now continually DOWN. Long story short: husband called Chrysler & they shipped/drove the part to our dealership – husband put in the part and now my window works! YAY! Along with that story is the fact that now I can attend a wedding tomorrow (using my car) – been looking forward to this one because it’s a close friend’s Granddaughter; I’ve known her all her life and I’m so excited for her – will be a great wedding.


 Lemon Cream Cheese Dump Cake

1 (16 oz) can lemon pie filling
1 (15 oz) box yellow cake mix
4 oz. cream cheese, cubed
1/2 C. (1 stick) unsalted butter,
very thinly sliced

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray a square baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray. Pour
pie filling into prepared dish &
spread to corners. Top with half
of dry cake mix. Place cubed
cream cheese evenly on top then
sprinkle remaining dry cake mix
on top. Place butter pats in single
layer on top, trying to cover as much
of surface of cake as possible. Bake
35-40 minutes until toothpick inserted
into center comes out clean. Remove
from oven & let cool 15 -20 minutes
before serving. Serves 8-10

Salmon Cakes

2 (6 oz, ea) cans salmon, drained/
remove bones (if desired)
2 eggs
10 saltine crackers, crushed
garlic powder, to taste
olive oil

In large bowl mix first 4
ingredients; for into patties.
Heat oil in large skillet &
fry patties on both sides
until golden. Serves 2-4

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

1 lb. uncooked macaroni pasta
4 T. apple cider vinegar
2 1/2 C. mayonnaise, divided
1 C. milk, divided
2 T. sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. black pepper

Optional add-ins:
thinly sliced sweet onion
diced celery
finely shredded carrots
chopped pineapple bits
chopped hard-boiled egg
cooked/crumbled bacon
cooked/cubed ham

Cook pasta accordg. to pkg.
directions; drain well. Place
hot pasta into a large bowl &
sprinkle with apple cider vinegar,
stirring to coat. Let stand & cool
10 minutes (for pasta to absorb
vinegar). Whisk 1 1/2 C. may,
1/2 C. milk, sugar, salt/pepper
in a bowl. Fold in cooked/cooled
macaroni, stir to coat. Allow to
cool completely. Add remaining
1/2 C. milk & 1/2 C. mayo along
with any add-ins you might like;
stir to coat. Cover & refrigerate
at least 1 hour or overnight. Stir
before serving & adjust seasonings
as needed. Serves 10-12


Crockpot Cheesy Hashbrowns

1/4 C. butter
1 sweet onion, chopped
3-4 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 C. sour cream
1 (30 oz) bag frozen country-style
shredded hashbrowns, thawed
salt/pepper, to taste

Melt butter in a saucepan over
medium heat; add onions &
saute until transparent. Remove
from heat & mix in sour cream.
In a large bowl mix thawed hash-
browns & 2 C. shredded cheese;
salt/pepper to taste. Pour butter
mixture in & gently mix until mixed
well. Spread mixture in bottom of
6 quart crockpot. Sprinkle
remaining cheese on top. Cover &
cook on Low 6-8 hours (or High
3-4 hours).  Serves 6


Watermelon & Tomato Salad

1 pint grape tomatoes (about 2 C.)*
1 pear tomato, chopped
1 regular tomato, chopped
1 medium cucumber, peeled/chopped
1 C. chopped onion**
3-4 C. peeled/chopped watermelon
juice of 1 fresh lemon (or about 3 T.)
5 T. olive oil
1/2 tsp. dried basil (or fresh basil leaves)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
(Optional: fresh mint leaves – poster used
3-4, chopped)

In large salad bowl combine tomatoes,
cucumber, onion & watermelon. In
another bowl whisk lemon juice, olive
oil, basil, salt/pepper. (add chopped
mint leaves, if using). Toss salad
with dressing. Chill & serve.
Serves about 8

*poster cuts some in half & leaves
a few whole

**poster used sweet Vidalia


Creamy Sun Dried Tomato
Sauce Chicken

1/2 C. chicken broth
1 1/2 – 2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken
thighs or breasts (frozen is fine)
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 (14.5 oz) can crushed tomatoes
1/4 C. flour
1 (6.7 oz) jar sundried tomatoes
1/2 C. Half & Half or heavy cream
2/3 C. grated Parmesan cheese
2-4 T. chopped fresh basil (or more,
depending on preference)
Cooked pasta, rice or quinoa to
serve 8*
Add broth & chicken to crockpot;
sprinkle with garlic powder, Ital.
seasoning, salt/pepper. Mix crushed
tomatoes & flour together & pour
over top of chicken. Cover & cook on
Low 4 hours (for thawed chicken),
6 hours for frozen. Use a fork to break
up chicken. Drain sun-dried tomatoes
of all oil – chop & add to crockpot; add
Half & Half (or cream), Parm. cheese &
basil – stir. Serve by itself or with cooked
pasta, rice or quinoa. Serves 8

*Poster said she cooked 1 lb. pasta on
stovetop while chicken was cooking. She
stirred the drained pasta plus 1/4 C.
pasta water into crockpot with chicken &


Death-by-chocolate Poke Cake

1 box chocolate cake mix (plus
ingredients on box to make cake)
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed
1 C. semisweet chocolate chips,
chocolate candy bar shavings – garnish

1 C. butter, softened
2 1/2 C. powdered sugar
3/4 C. cocoa powder
2 tsp. vanilla
pinch kosher salt
1/4 C. heavy whipping cream,
plus more, if necessary

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Butter & flour 9 X 13″ baking
dish. Prepare cake mix accordg.
to pkg. directions & bake
26 minutes until a toothpick
inserted into center of cake
comes out clean. Using the
handle of a wooden spoon, poke
top of cake all over, making holes.
In small bowl mix sweet’d cond’
milk & melted chocolate together –
pour mixture into holes.


In large bowl using elec. mixer,
beat butter, powdered sugar, cocoa
powder, vanilla & salt. Beat in
heavy cream (adding more, by
tablespoon, until consistency is
creamy but can hold peaks).
Spread frosting all over cake,
smoothing top evenly then
sprinkle top with chocolate



Our weather is in the 70’s & sunny – perfect
SUMMER weather (in my opinion). Gas prices
are hovering between $2.99/9 and $3.09/9
I’m glad I got to my local Clark station when
it was still $2.99/9!

Been on the phone & also chatting with lots
of people about the two upcoming events
I like to participate in – both of the historical
society’s events. Not sure exactly why, but
both groups are really behind on asking
groups/people/presenters to participate –
very strange. I even sent out an email to
my knit group asking who would be joining
me at Log Cabin Day – so far 2 people
said they’re coming – going to be a VERY
THIN presentation from us – oh well.
Reminds me of the very first year I asked
our group to attend -I was the only one
there (no costume at that time) – just me
sitting in a folding chair, regular clothes,
knitting with a little sign saying:
“Waterford-Area Knitters & Crocheters”-
people walked by looking at me like I was
NUTS! We’ll see how this all shakes out –
I’m getting the feeling that both groups
are thinning out due to lack of getting
NEW volunteers to participate. This
generation is just NOT interested in history,
so why bother (not my idea). It’s very sad.

Hope your day is going smoothly – tonight
is Enchiladas for dinner – a favorite here.



It’s Wednesday – AGAIN!

Well, ‘life’ is finally getting back to ‘normal’ (I know: NORMAL is a setting on your dryer or a city in Indiana . . . hehehe). Went to both knit groups – lots of great chatting, sharing ideas, etc. One of my ‘helper’ adults in my special needs group has officially named me the “Logistics Manager” – that means I like to keep track of lots of little bits of information/details and have them IN ORDER! (that can also be explained as a “Type A Personality”). I’ve been attempting to get details together on both the Log Cabin Day AND the Oakland County Historical Society’s Ice Cream Social (not counting information on several new special needs students and several new knit group members). As to the two Historical Society events – I just learned last night that they are BOTH having problems with organizational details – one of my friends (who spins wool) will not be at either event – apparently they FORGOT to invite her and she now is booked for other events! WEIRD! I got to thinking – actually, if we’re analyzing details I/my group didn’t get an official invite from either society EITHER! WEIRD! I know that both groups are having difficulties with keeping volunteers to staff/man these events (their members are aging and there doesn’t seem to be very many young people interested in perpetuating these historic events!). I just sent out an email to my knit group asking them to please contact me as to how many will actually be attending/demonstrating for Log Cabin Day – so far I have ONE person…that’s sad. Because of the down-sizing, they also compacted presenters last year & moved things closer to the center of the location. As it stands, I (& my 1 friend) might be the ONLY presenters on the ‘other’ side of the bridge! Bad part is: I can’t even tell people where we’ll be located, as of right now I DON”T KNOW! WEIRDER! Oh well – just keep plugging (or, as Nemo said: “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming!”). It will all work out in the end – I just hope this will not be the last year for either event. (the Oakland County one is much larger/more people, etc. – would be a shame if either one discontinued…)


Strawberry Cream Parfaits

one 1 lb. bag frozen unsweetened
strawberries, thawed
2 T. sour cream
1 scant cup chilled heavy whipping
eight 2-inch vanilla meringue
cookies, coarsely broken (about
2 C.) plus 2 more, halved*

In medium bowl using a fork (or
potato masher), mash berries &
juices into a chunky sauce. Place
sour cream into a 1-cup measuring
cup – add enough chilled heavy
cream to fill cup completely. Scrape
cream mixture into a deep medium
bowl – beat mixture until thick & stiff
using elec. mixer – fold in broken
merigues gently. Divide sauce in half &
spoon into bottom of four serving
bowls (or glasses). Divide cream
in half & spoon on top of sauce.
Repeat layers using remaining
sauce & cream mixture. Top each
parfait with a meringue half &
serve immediately. Serves 4

*can be found in grocery store or
local bakery – place meringues in
a ziplock bag & break up – (they
can be rather sharp if using just
your hands.)


Fresh Vegetable Salad

1/2 C. sour cream
1/4 C. mayonnaise
2 T. white wine vinegar
2 T. jalapeno – seeded/finely
1 tsp. celery seed
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

4 ears yellow corn, cleaned/cooked/
cooled & cut off cob*
2 large tomatoes, seeded/chopped
6 stalks celery, chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1/2 red onion, finely chopped

In medium bowl whisk sour cream,
mayo, vinegar, jalapeno, celery seed,
salt/pepper until smooth. Set aside
at least 5 minutes for flavors to meld.
In large bowl mix all chopped veggies –
pour dressing over & gently mix
together until well combined. Serve
immediately or cover & refrigerate
until ready to serve – up to 3 hours.
Serves 10

You can leave out jalapeno if you
don’t like spicy foods.

*you can also use 2 (15 oz, ea) cans
whole kernel corn, drained/rinsed
(but fresh tastes better)


Chicken Salad w/ Lemon & Dill

10 1/2 oz. cooked skinless boneless
chicken breasts (from 1 whole
rotisserie chicken)
2 T. fresh dill, chopped
zest & juice of 1 lemon
1 T. olive oil
1/4 tsp. kosher salt

Remove chicken legs, wings &
thighs from chicken & set aside
for another meal. Remove skin
from breasts & remove meat
from bones. Break chicken into
chunks using your hands or a
knife – place in a large bowl. Add
dill, lemon juice, lemon zest, olive
oil & salt – mix together & refrigerate
until ready to serve. Serves 3


Crockpot Biscuits/Bacon Breakfast

8 slices bacon, cooked/chopped
5 large eggs
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1/4 C. milk
1 medium tomato, chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, seeded/chopped
1 tube refrigerated biscuits (like Pillsbury

In a bowl mix bacon, eggs, cheese, milk,
tomato & bell pepper until well combined &
eggs are scrambled. Open biscuits & cut
each biscuit into 4 equal parts. Drop cut
biscuits into egg/milk mixture – fold into
mixture until biscuits are well covered.
Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick
cooking spray. Pour biscuit/egg mixture
into crockpot, spreading evenly over
bottom. Cover & cook on High 3-4 hours
until biscuits are cooked through & no
longer doughy & egg mixture is cooked
in center. Serve, topping each serving
with additional cheese, if desired.
Serves 8

Crockpot Pork Chop Cacciatore

1 1/2 .b pork chops
2 T. cooking oil
1 (15 oz) can Italian diced tomatoes
3 T. tomato paste
1 c. chicken broth
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 clove garlic, minced
1 small white onion, diced
2 C. sliced fresh mushrooms

Cooked pasta or rice to serve 4
Heat large, heavy skillet over
medium-high heat. Add oil & chops;
brown chops on both sides*

Add diced tomatoes, tomato paste,
chicken broth, garlic, salt/pepper,
thyme, oregano to crockpot – stir
until tomato paste dissolves into diced
tomato juice. Add onion & mushrooms;
stir again. Add chops into sauce. Cover
& cook on Low 6-7 hours WITHOUT
opening lid during cooking time.
Serve over cooked pasta or rice.
Serves 4

*Only brown chops, don’t cook
completely – crock pot will do that


Strawberry Cobbler

1 C. self-rising flour
1 C. sugar
1 C. milk
1/2 tsp. cinnamon (optional)
2 C. sweetened strawberries,
fresh or frozen
1 stick margarine

*1 T. sugar (last minute)

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Melt margarine (or butter) in a
2 to 2 1/2 qt. oven-proof casserole.
In large bowl mix all dry ingredients
– stir in milk until smooth & pour over
melted margarine in casserole dish –
do not stir. Pour strawberries in center
of batter – do not stir.* Bake 30-40 minutes.
Batter should be cakey, not soupy.

*Poster said: She always sprinkles
1 T. sugar over batter & strawberries
before baking.

Overnight Fruit Salad

3 large eggs, beaten
1/4 C. sugar
1/4 C. vinegar
2 T. butter
2 C. green grapes
2 C. miniature marshmallows
1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks,
1 (15 oz) can mandarin oranges,
2 medium firm bananas, sliced
2 C. heavy whipping cream, whipped
1/2 C. chopped pecans

In double boiler over medium heat
cook & stir eggs, sugar & vinegar
until mixture is thickened & reaches
160 degrees F. – remove from heat;
stir in butter. Cool.
In large serving bowl combine grapes,
marshmallows, pineapple, oranges &
bananas. Add cooled dressing & stir
to coat. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.
Just before serving, fold in whipped
cream & pecans. Serves 12-16



Our weather has turned a bit cooler –
today it’s in the low 60’s & sunny (we’ve
had a bit of rain lately but the days are
still nice – not too hot).

Also organizing my special needs group’s
last Gym Night until Fall – we’re having a
picnic (of sorts): hot dogs, chips, watermelon
& ice cream – a BIG treat for all involved –
that’s coming up Friday, June 15th. Life has
kind of swung into a Summer Whirlwind:
between knit groups & historical society
events, special needs group events, grandson’s
end-of-school year events and now a wedding
this Saturday, to quote an old expression:
“My dance card is all filled up!” (not complaining,
mind you!)

Hope you are managing whatever events &
happenings are coming your way – remember
to take a little time to ‘breathe’/relax – a quick
nap does wonders to revive the soul as well
as the body!



Sunday Evening

I feel like I’m ‘Back to ME’ again – had a great choir practice this evening followed by evening church and communion – I’m ‘fueled’ and ready to regain the land of the living – so to speak.

There are SOooooo many recipes to share, I’ve decided to keep on, especially since I always give the source of each recipe on this blog. Here goes:


Strawberry Cream Cheese Icebox Cake

2 lb. fresh strawberries, washed, tops
cut off & sliced 1/4 inch
2 sleeves graham crackers
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, room temp.
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
2 (3.4 oz, ea) pkgs. instant cheesecake
flavored pudding mix
3 C. milk
1 (12 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed/divided

Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray. Line bottom with graham
crackers. In large bowl combine cream
cheese & sweetn’d cond’ milk – using elec
mixer, beat until smooth & creamy. Add
pudding mixes & milk – continue mixing on
Low 4-5 minutes until it starts to thicken.
Fold in 2 C. Cool Whip until smooth. Pour
half of cream cheese mixture over graham
crackers. Arrange a single layer of straw-
berry slices over cream cheese mixture &
top with another layer of graham crackers.
Cover with remaining cream cheese mixture &
top with another layer of sliced strawberries.
Cover & refrigerate 6-8 hours.
When serving, top with remaining Cool Whip.
Crush remaining graham crackers & sprinkle
over top.

(recipe: Tasty Recipes)

Crockpot Cheesy Salsa Chicken/Rice

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts,
2 (10.75 oz, ea) cans Cheddar cheese soup
1 (16 oz) jar chunky salsa
1 1/4 C. water
1 1/4 C. uncooked long-cooking rice
(NOT minute rice)

Mix all ingredients in crockpot;
cover & cook on Low 5 hours –
(it’s done when chicken & rice
are tender). Serves 6-8


Chunky Gazpacho Salad

5 roma tomatoes, chopped into
1-inch chunks
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
1/2 English cucumber, chopped
2 green onions, sliced (green &
white parts)
1/3 C. fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 T. spicy vegetable juice
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 C. olive oil

Combine tomatoes, bell pepper,
celery & cucumber in a large
bowl with green onions & parsley.
In small bowl whisk vegetable juice,
vinegar, Wors. sauce, Dijon mustard,
salt/pepper. Slowly whisk in olive
oil until well combined; pour over
salad & toss mix well. Refrigerate
30 minutes to allow flavors to combine.
Serves 4-6


Grilled Maple Pork Chops

6 T. maple syrup
6 T. balsamic vinegar
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4/ tsp. ground black pepper
4 boneless pork loin chops (1 1/2
inches thicken & 12 oz, each)

In small bowl whisk syrup, vinegar,
salt/pepper until blended – pour
1/2 C. into a large ziplock bag. Add
chops – seal bag & turn to coat.
Refrigerate 1 hour (reserve
remaining marinade for basting)

Oil grill & bring to medium heat.
Drain chops (discard marinade in
bag). cook chops, covered, over
medium heat OR broil 4 inches from
heat 13-17 minutes until a thermometer
reads 145 degrees F., turning occasionally
& basting with reserved marinade during
last 5 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before
serving. Serves 4


Maple Baked Beans with Sausage

2 (28 oz, ea) cans Bush’s Original baked
1 lb. mild sausage
1/2 C. chopped white onion
2 T. brown sugar
1 T. McCormick Grill Mates
Smokehouse Maple
2 T. ketchup
2 T. mustard
1/3 C. maple syrup

Preheat oven 300 degrees F. Brown
sausage in skillet & drain. Combine
with all other ingredients in a casserole
dish with a lid. Bake 2 hours until
desired consistency. Serves 8-10


Chicken & Asparagus Quiche

2 (9 inch, ea) pie crusts
2 T. butter
2 T. olive oil
1 T. garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped
1 bunch asparagus, ends trimmed/
cut into 1-inch pieces
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts,
3 eggs, beaten
1 C. Half & Half
1 tsp. dry mustard
salt/pepper, to taste
2 C. shredded Monterey Jack
cheese, divided

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
Place pie crusts in two 9″
pie pans & bake 10-12 minutes
until lightly golden.

Reduce oven temp. to 375 degrees F.

In large skillet melt butter & olive
over medium heat. Saute
garlic, onion & asparagus 5-7
minutes until asparagus is
crisp-tender. Using a slotted
spoon, remove vegetables
from skillet, leaving as much
butter mixture as possible. Add
chicken to skillet & saute 7-8
minutes until fully cooked.
Remove skillet from heat. In a
bowl whisk remaining ingredients
(except cheeses). Sprinkle 1/2 C.
cheese in each pie crust. Layer
half of chicken in each crust,
followed by half veggies per
crust & half egg mixture into
each crust. Top with remaining
cheese. Bake, uncovered, 30-35
minutes. Makes 2 quiches, each
serving 4-6


4-Ingredient Almond Joy Cookies

1 (14 oz) bag sweetened shredded
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed
2 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips
2/3 C. lightly salted chopped almonds

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Line large baking sheet with parchment
paper. In large bowl combine coconut,
cond. milk, choc. chips & almonds –
stir until combined. Fill a small bowl
with a little warm water.Using a scoop
or tablespoon, scoop dough onto sheet.
Dip your fingers in the water & gently
pat down tops of each cookie to form
discs (or use the back of a spoon
dipped in water). Bake 14-17 minutes
until edges start to turn brown. Cool
on baking sheet a few minutes then
transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
Makes 3 dozen



Our weather this past week has gone from the
80’s/90’s down to the 60’s today with overcast
clouds & intermitant rain – it’s OK – all the beautiful
flowers & growing things need the rain.

I’m still plugging away at the three baby blankets
with a short pause to (once again) correct slight
mistakes in 2 out of 3…sometimes ya ‘got it’ and
sometimes ya just don’t! I’m determined to finish
all three of them.

OH! Gas prices dropped a bit from $3.?? down to
$2.89/9 – not great but better than into the Three
dollar range, right? Makes my little Scots heart
glad to see any drop in price!

Hope that you are having a good day/evening –