Sometimes LIFE is just CRAZY!

The above photo is not one I took BUT – today I went to Kroger to shop and was totally amazed/appalled, etc. at the TOILET PAPER aisle – it was totally bare of ANY product! I know people are going crazy about the virus and have ‘heard’ about the ‘hoarding’ but this is ridiculous! Last week when checking out at Kroger my friend the cashier said the minute she saw me: “At least YOU didn’t tell me we have NO bottled water!” Good Grief, people – GET A GRIP! I can understand a panic if it were a huge snow storm barreling down on your area (‘maybe’ – maybe you need a few staples to get by) but REALLY! Just WHAT are they doing with all the toilet paper? Making MASKS from it? I kind of understand the hand sanitizer (a bit) and maybe the masks (if you’re in China!) but TOILET PAPER? Just plain weird! (Ok…stepping off my soapbox now . . . )


Turtle Cookie Bars

2 C. flour
1 C. firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 C. butter, softened

Second Layer:
1 C. pecan halves (or chopped)
2/3 C. butter
1/2 C. firmly packed brown sugar
1 C. milk chocolate morsels
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl combine crust
ingredients using elec. mixer,
beat at Medium speed until
blended. Pat mixture firmly into
ungreased 9 X 13″ pan; arrange
nuts over crust.
In a saucepan combine 2/3 C. butter
& 1/2 C. brown sugar – bring to boil
over medium-high heat, stirring
constantly. Cook 3 minutes, stirring
constantly – pour over nuts.
Bake 15-17 minutes until golden
brown & bubbly. Remove from oven;
sprinkle top with choc. morsels. Let
stand 2-3 minutes until slightly melted.
Gently swirl chocolate using a knife,
leaving some morsels whole (do not
spread). Let cool on wire rack at
room temp. until chocolate is set. Cut
into squares.


Lasagna-stuffed Chicken Breasts

2 chicken breasts
1 C. whole milk ricotta cheese
1 egg
3 tsp. Italian seasoning, divided
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp. salt
2 C. shredded Mozzarella cheese,
1 C. marinara sauce
salt/pepper, to taste
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Lightly spray baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
Cut each chicken breast horizontally
almost all the way through (you
are butterflying each) & place in
prepared pan. In small bowl stir
ricotta cheese, egg, 2 tsp. Ital.
seasoning, garlic, salt & 1 C.
mozzarella cheese. Spoon about
1/4 C. marinara over half of each
chicken breast; spread ricotta
mixture on top of sauce on each
breast & fold chicken over to close.
Drizzle remaining sauce over chicken
& top with Mozz. cheese. Sprinkle top
with remaining Ital. seasoning & season
with salt/pepper. Bake 25-30 minutes
until chicken reaches an internal
temperature of 165 degrees F.
Serves 4

NOTE: recipe can easily be doubled or tripled


Red, White & Blue Mashed Potatoes

2 lb. red new potatoes, quartered
2 cloves garlic, smashed
5-6 strips bacon
1/4 lb. Gorgonzola cheese, room temp.
1/4 C. heavy cream, room temp.
1 T. butter, room temp.
salt/ground black pepper, to taste

In medium pot add potatoes & garlic – fill
with enough water to cover potatoes by
an inch. Season with salt & bring to boil.
Reduce to simmer & cook about 15 minutes
until potatoes are soft. Fry bacon in a skillet
until crisp; place on paper towel to drain then
roughly chop. Drain potatoes & garlic; place
them back in the pot with the Gorg. cheese,
heavy cream, butter & chopped bacon. Roughly
mash, adding more cream, if needed. Season
with salt/pepper, to taste. Serves 4


Crockpot Ranch Pork Chops

4-6 boneless pork chops
1 stick butter (or margarine)
1 pkt. dry ranch (salad dressing) mix

Place pork chops in crockpot (they
can be frozen). Place butter on top &
sprinkle dry ranch dressing on top.
Cover & cook on Low 6-8 hours (or
High 3-4 hours). Once cooked, serve
with sauce over chops. Serves 4-5


Hearty Navy Bean Soup

1 1/2 lbs. (3 C.) dried navy beans
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes,
1 large onion, chopped
1 meaty ham hock (or 1 C.
cooked/diced ham)
2 C. chicken broth
2 1/2 C. water
salt/pepper, to taste
minced fresh parsley – garnish
Rinse & sort beans – soak accordg. to
pkg. directions. Drain & rinse beans,
discarding liquid & place in a large
Dutch oven. Add tomatoes w/juices,
onion, ham hock, water, salt/pepper &
bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover &
simmer about 1 1/2 hours until beans
are tender. Add more water if necessary.
Remove ham hock & let stand until cool
enough to handle – remove meat from
bone (discard bone). Cut meat into
bite-sized pieces – return to soup.
Serve (garnish with parsley, if desired).
Makes 2 1/2 quarts.

NOTE: For a thicker soup:
Cool beans then puree some of them
before adding to Dutch oven.


Dump & Bake Sloppy Joe Casserole

1 (16 oz0 pkg. uncooked rotini pasta
2 (15 oz, ea) cans Manwich original
sloppy joe sauce
3 C. water
16 oz. fully cooked miniature,
bite-sized meatballs (if using frozen, make
sure they are completely thawed before
1 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

optional garnishs:
sliced tomatoes, diced avocado, sliced
green onions
Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl stir uncooked
pasta, Sloppy joe sauce, water & meatballs.
Pour into prepared dish; cover tightly with
foil & bake 35 minutes.
Uncover & stir (check pasta – make sure it’s
al dente: firm but just about finished cooking.
It it’s still too hard, cover & return to oven until
pasta is al dente.
Uncover, sprinkle top with both cheeses & bake,
uncovered, 5-10 minutes longer until cheese is
melted & pasta is tender. Garnish with
optional toppings before serving. Serves 8


Crockpot Molten Mocha Cake

4 large eggs
1 1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. butter, melted
1 T. vanilla
1 C. flour
1/2 C. baking cocoa
1 T. instant coffee granules
1/4 tsp. salt

vanilla ice cream & fresh raspberries
Spray insides of 1 1/2 qt. crockpot
with nonstick cooking spray
In a bowl whisk first 4 ingredients. In
another bowl whisk flour, cocoa, coffee
granules & salt – gradually beat into egg
mixture & pour into crockpot. Cover &
cook on Low 2 1/2 – 3 hours, until a toothpick
inserted into center comes out with moist
crumbs. Serve warm. Serves 6
If desired, serve with ice cream & raspberries.

NOTE: If there are any leftovers – place them in
a dish & refrigerate (if left in crockpot & refrigerated,
it will stick).



I finally managed to finish the knit dark green scarf
for my friend – I will be giving it to her tonight. Today
at my Library knit group I finished the mint green baby
blanket. NOW MY ‘dance card’ is OPEN – to new things
to knit! I have a simple blanket that I started awhile
back – that will be used for my Panera & Library knit
groups – it’s a really simple pattern and I can talk &
knit without worrying about losing stitches or my place.
On a ‘back burner’ is another crocheted Granny Squares
baby blanket – not sure just why, but I find it relaxing
creating those little squares (also knowing I’m able to
use up little bits of yarns). I’m thinking, for now, I’ll
just keep those two projects to do, with the occasional
pair of baby booties for variety. After finishing TWO
complicated knit items, I’m grateful to just cruise a bit
with simple things. (We’ll see how long this lasts – I
do have a tendency to get ‘bored’ with ‘simple’ . . .
just sayin’)

Our weather has been great for this time of year;
most days it’s clear & sunny. Temps are bouncing
a bit from the mid-20’s up to mid 50’s, but I’m not
worried – sunny & clear is JUST FINE for me! (we
‘were’ supposed to get rain & snow today but I just
checked the weather report again and there’s NOTHING
on their report like that! YAY! Sunny & clear with a little
rain Thurs.)

Hope you are all in GOOD health – it’s a sad state of
affairs when the Health Department has to remind
people to WASH THEIR HANDS! Golly! Such a simple
thing – oh well . . . stay healthy if you can!



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