Getting Things Done!


Beautiful Summer day – mid 70’s & sunny – the kind of day to relax . . . or not. Middle son came over today after church and we had a ‘chat’. I had suggested he move back home either Monday or Tuesday, but I was leaning more to Tuesday to give me a little extra time to get his room straightened/arranged. While we were chatting he told me he already had paid the rent for this month and there really wasn’t a rush – we could do it more towards the end of the month . . . WHEW! I had envisioned frantically attempting to move/store/re-place things in his room to make room for the large amounts of clothes, mostly (do you remember the 5 garbage bags of clothes I washed for him just before he moved back in in December?). I guess I just have to ‘put it out there’ – we are a family of PACK RATS. We have things stuffed in closets and any other open space – things from when the boys were little: toys, games, books, audio tapes of stores, etc. In his room, presently, is a rather large bookcase STUFFED with kids books & audio tapes – I just never felt the need to either get rid of them or pack them away! My ‘plan’ for the next few weeks is to dig into the closet in his room and remove/move up stairs 4-5 sleeping bags, some old toys, extra pillows, etc. Hopefully that will give me the room I need to move about 7 board games (the very same ones my grandson LOVES to play when here). I’ve said it before: we have a small house – that leaves NO ROOM for anything extra. Oh well – I’ve got my work cut out for me – thank heavens it doesn’t have to be done in ONE DAY!

Dinner tonight was roasted turkey breast and stuffing (good deal on the turkey) – not exactly sure why but I’m sort of on a ‘cleaning’ thing today. Got the laundry done, cleaned the fridge, rearranged both the upstairs and downstairs freezers (making a list on the fridge of what I have, meat-wise, in both freezers). I’m mentioned that middle son can REALLY EAT! I’m attempting to use up the meats in the freezers so that I can purchase more. With just my husband & I eating we don’t go through the food like we used to when I was cooking for five. Makes me feel good that the fridge & freezers are ‘in order’ now – easier to see what’s available if you’re hungry.

Worked on some more baby hats today in the car back & forth to church. I like making them – they take very little yarn and knit up quite quickly. Haven’t touched the last baby afghan since last Tuesday (knowing I have until the end of August to finish it  – a bit of a prevaricator, I’d say). Speaking of putting things off, I haven’t felt the urge to go pick any more wild blackberries lately. I can see from my kitchen window that they are in full ripeness right now; I suppose I ‘could’ pick & freeze them but I’m just not inspired to go get scratched & bit by mosquitoes anymore. I learned last week that Grandson will be spending Fridays at a day camp through the first part of August, so there’s no one who really desires to eat them – guess the birds & critters will be happy with what’s out there, eh?


Chili Relleno Casserole

2 (7 oz, ea) cans whole green chile
peppers, drained
8 oz. Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
8 oz. Longhorn or Cheddar cheese,
2 eggs, beaten
1 (5 oz) can evaporated milk
2 T. flour
1/2 C. milk
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick spray. Lay half of chiles
evenly in bottom of dish; sprinkle
with half of both cheeses & cover
with remaining chiles. In a bowl
mix eggs, milk & flour; pour over
top of chiles. Bake 25 minutes;
remove from oven & pour tomato
sauce evenly over top. Bake 15
minutes more. Sprinkle top with
remaining cheeses & serve.

Note; Poster added cooked ground
turkey: layer of chiles, then turkey,
then cheeses, etc

(recipe: Courtney Luper-Facebook)

Jalapeno Cream Cheese Circles


1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/4 C. minced jalapenos (or 1/2 can,
1 tube regular refrigerated crescent

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray a cookie sheet with nonstick
spray. In small bowl combine cream
cheese & jalapenos; mix well. Open
cresc. rolls – do not separate. Open
roll of rolls & separate long-ways at
perforation so you have two long
sheets of crescent rolls with 4 rolls
each. Pinch remaining perforations
together on each of the 2 sheets to
make two continuous crescent roll
sheets. Divide cream cheese mixture
& spread evenly over both sheets.
Roll up both rolls from short end.
Cut each roll into 12-16 pieces. Place
each piece on prepared cookie sheet
& bake 11-13 minutes.


Thomas’ BBQ Potato Salad
(from Thomas Pit BBQ in
Madison County)

1 (32 oz) pkg. cubed frozen hash
4 eggs, hard boiled/chopped
1/2 C. diced onion
1/2 c. chopped sweet pickles
1 C. mayonnaise
1/3 c. sweet pickle juice
1 heaping tsp. yellow mustard
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper

Place hash browns in large pot & cover
with water. Bring to boil over medium-
high heat. Once boiling, cook 10 minutes
until tender. Drain & place in large bowl.
Mash potatoes with potato masher but
leave lumpy. Place chopped sweet
pickles & chopped onion in a blender;
pulse a few times until very fine, almost
like a relish. Place mayonnaise, pickle
juice, mustard, minced pickles/onions,
salt/pepper in bowl with potatoes. Stir
until well mixed. Stir in chopped eggs.
Cover & refrigerate several hours until

Blueberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

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

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

1/3 C. powdered sugar
1/2 C. blueberries

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cream together butter & sugar
until light & fluffy; beat in egg &
vanilla. Add sour cream & milk;
mix well. Add flour, baking
powder & salt; mix just until
incorporated. Spread evenly into
greased 9 X 9″ cake pan*. Spread
1 1/2 C. blueberries on top.

Prepare Cheesecake Layer:
Beat cream cheese with sugar until
incorporated; add vanilla & egg;
spread on top of cake.

Bake 45-55 minutes until a toothpick
inserted into center comes out clean.
Allow to cool completely before serving.

To serve:
Sprinkle powdered sugar & blueberries
on top. Serves 10

*Poster uses a springform pan

Crockpot Green Beans

1 (14.5 oz) can green beans, drained
2 (14 oz, ea) cans chicken broth, season
with garlic salt
1 onion, cut into wedges (peel outside
skin off)
1/2 lb. bacon, cut into small pieces &

(save bacon drippings
for something else)
salt/pepper, to taste

Place all ingredients (except bacon
drippings) in crockpot. Cover & cook
on Low 8 hours or High 5 hours.

(recipe: Crockpot Moms)

3-Ingredient Peanut Butter/
Banana Mousse

(serves 1)

1 T. peanut butter
2 T. whipped cream
1 banana

Toppings: ice cream caramel sauce/
chocolate sauce (optional)

In bowl place peanut butter & whipped
cream; mix. Cut banana into slices. In
another bowl place half the banana,
half peanut butter mousse; repeat with
rest of banana & mousse. Chill 1 hour.
Top with toppings, if desired. Serves 1.

Swiss Fondue Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled,
thinly sliced
4 slices Swiss cheese
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of chicken
or mushroom soup
1/3 C. apple juice
1 C. dry herb-seasoned stuffing mix
1/4 C. butter, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
spray. Sprinkle chicken evenly on both
sides with salt/pepper; place in pan.Top
evenly with apple slices & place a slice
of cheese over each chicken breast. In
medium bowl combine soup & apple
juice; pour over chicken, then sprinkle
with stuffing mix. Drizzle butter over top.
Bake 30-35 minutes until chicken is no
longer pink in center. Serves 4


Crockpot Scalloped Potatoes & Ham

10 medium potatoes (about 3 lb), peeled
& thinly sliced
3 C. cubed fully cooked ham
2 large onions, thinly sliced
2 C. (8 oz) shredded Cheddar cheese
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of mushroom
soup, undiluted
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. pepper

In a greased 6 qt. crockpot, layer half
of potatoes, ham, onions & cheese.
Repeat layers; pour soup over top &
sprinkle with paprika & pepper. Cover
& cook on Low 8-10 hours or until
potatoes are tender.

(recipe: crockpotmoms-Facebook)

Hope you’re enjoying these lovely
Summer days – it won’t be too long
before we’re all saying: “I MISS those
warm days!”



I LOVE a Bargain!


My ‘church/dressy’ shoes have seen better days and it’s time to go shoe-shopping. Unlike most women, I’m NOT a shoe person; shoes, for me, are functional. They serve a purpose, not a fashion statement. I have 1 pair of black medium heels, a pair of white summer (dress) flats, several pairs of summer sandals and 1 pair of black winter shoes – no, I’m NOT a shoe diva! Today I received, in my emails, a coupon for Payless Shoes (granted, they’re not your ‘expensive’ shoes, but . . . ) for 40% off any pair of shoes (simply because I haven’t shopped there in over a year – they started the email with: “We Miss You!”). After quite a bit of looking/trying on, etc. I settled on a plain, very much like my old, black semi-heels (medium wedges, if you will). The checkout gentleman rang it up and said: “That will be $31. and some cents.” I said: “Not with 40% off, it isn’t!” He agreed – I got them for $19.07 AND, they have a survey for your purchase. When you go online and fill in the survey you also get $10.00 off any purchase at Office Max! It’s getting towards that time when I’ll have to comp up the next special needs group newsletter AND I’ll be needing printer ink cartridges; they usually amount to almost $50, so with the $10 off coupon PLUS my $37.00 credit (for turning in used Hewlitt Packard ink cartridges) those new cartridges should be almost FREE! Pretty neat, eh? Like I said: I LOVE a BARGAIN!!!

Our weather today is absolutely GORGEOUS! It’s what our August weather is usually like: Sunny, breezy, light fluffy clouds in a robin’s egg blue sky, temperature 80 degrees F. A REALLY nice day!

Went grocery shopping this morning for the ingredients for another Chinese Coleslaw plus a dump cake dessert. Tomorrow is our Sunday School class Corn Roast and I usually bring two ‘sides’. Both recipes are really easy; I’ll be putting them together later on tonight (I’ll be busy early tomorrow with the bridal shower of a friend).

Worked on the last baby blanket yesterday and then just felt like working on something little; got out the baby yarns and knit another two baby hats for St. Joseph’s hospital. I’d forgotten just how much FUN it is to knit something quick and fun. I like working on them because I can be creative with little bits of yarn and still come up with a really cute hat. I had some apricot yarn left over from one of the baby blankets; knit a all white cuff for the hat, then knit the hat in apricot, but mid-way up, knit about 4 rows (Purled – which leaves a bumpy row outside) of the white, then finished with the remaining apricot. These little hats get rid of small bits of yarn that most people would throw away AND they give me an outlet for my creativity.



1 graham cracker pie crust
1 (3 oz.) pkg. cream cheese
2 C. powdered sugar
1 (8 oz) can crushed pineapple
2 medium bananas
1 (6 oz) box instant white chocolate pudding/pie filling mix
8 oz. Cool Whip, thawed
10 strawberries

Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar together until fluffy.
Spread evenly over bottom of crust.
Drain pineapple well and spread evenly over cream cheese.
Slice banana and cover pineapple with slices.
Pour on pudding mixture; top with Cool Whip.
Cover entire pie or garnish with strawberries, or other fresh fruit.

(recipe: Facebook)


Grilled Green Beans

8 oz. fresh green beans
1 T. lemon juice
1 T. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. kosher salt (optional)
pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese

Mix all ingredients except Parmesan cheese
in a large ziplock bag. Let flavors marinate
for 10 minutes. Put on a grill over medium heat,
turning frequently until crisp tender. About 10
minutes. Remove beans from heat, sprinkle
with Parmesan cheese.

NOTE: (Use one of those special grill skillets or a cast iron
skillet if you are worried about losing beans through the cracks.)

(recipe: Facebook)

Parmesan Meatloaf
(Low Carb)

2 lbs Ground Beef
1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
1/4 cup Dijon Mustard
1/2 cup Ketchup
2 T. Marjoram
1 T. dried basil
1 T. dried parsley
1 T. oregano
1 T. thyme
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup green bell pepper
1 small onion, very finely chopped
1/2 cup spaghetti sauce of your choice
1 T. olive oil
1 large egg, beaten (optional)

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, egg,
seasonings, and dressings in a bowl.
Put mixed beef, into a sprayed loaf pan.
Top meatloaf with pasta sauce & mozzarella
cheese. Place filled loaf pan on bottom rack of
oven and bake 45 minutes – 1 hour. Remove 
meatloaf from the oven and allow to rest for
5-10 minutes before serving/slicing. Garnish
with parsley if desired.

(recipe: Facebook)


Baked Cheddar-Broccoli Rice Cups

1 (10 oz.) pkg. thawed broccoli
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup white rice
1/4 cup Ranch Dressing
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup grated cheese (any flavor)
1/2 tsp. salt and pepper – to taste

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Boil rice. Move cooked rice to a bowl to cool for a minute.
Add all ingredients, but only use 1/2 of the cheese.
Grease a 8 cup muffin tray and shape mixture into
balls, then sprinkle rest of cheese on top.
Bake 25 minutes until golden and crisp.

(recipe: Facebook)



1 large head cauliflower
4 oz. cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup minced chives or green onions
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup crispy, crumbled bacon
1 cup Sharp Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cut out stem and core from cauliflower; cut
into small pieces. Cook in large pot of boiling
salted water until cauliflower is tender, but not
overly soft. Drain well and mash with potato
masher, leaving some chunks. Mix in cream
cheese, sour cream, most of the chives,
Parmesan, and most of the crumbled bacon.
Spread evenly in a small glass casserole dish.
Sprinkle with Cheddar cheese. Bake 30-35 minutes,
or until hot and bubbly. Top with remaining
chives and bacon.

(recipe: Facebook)

Country Apple Squares

2 C. flour
1 C. brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 C. butter or margarine
1 C. walnuts, chopped
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 T. milk
1 egg, beaten
1/4 C. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 C. apples, peeled & chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine flour, brown sugar & cinnamon. Cut
in butter to resemble coarse crumbs. Add walnuts; mix.
Measure 2 C. crumb mixture into a greased 9 X 13 pan.
Bean cream cheese & milk until smooth. Mix in egg,
sugar & vanilla. Pour over crumb mixture & top with
apples. Sprinkle top with reserved crumbs; bake
30 minutes.


Taco Stuffed Zucchini Boats

4 medium zucchini, cut in half lengthwise
1/2 C. mild salsa
1 lb. ground turkey (or beef)
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. kosher salt (or, to taste)
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 small onion, minced
2 T. bell pepper, minced
4 oz can tomato sauce
1/4 C. water
1/2 C. Mexican blend shredded cheese
1/4 C. chopped scallions or cilantro,
for topping

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Bring large pot of water to a boil. Place
1/4 C. salsa in bottom of a large baking
dish. Using a small spoon or melon baller,
hollow out the center of the zucchini
halves, leaving 1/4 inch thick shell on each
half. Chop the scooped out flesh into small
pieces & set aside 3/4 C. to add to taco
filling (squeeze excess water with a paper
towel), discard the rest or save to use in
another recipe. Drop zucchini halves into
boiling water; cook 1 minute & remove from
water. Brown meat in large skillet, breaking
up pieces as it cooks. When no longer pink
add spices; mix well. Add onion, bell pepper,
reserved zucchini, tomato sauce & water; stir
& cover. Simmer on low about 20 minutes.
Using a spoon, fill the hollowed zucchini boats,
dividing the taco meat equally, about 1/3 C. in
each, pressing firmly. Top each with 1 T. shredded
cheese. Cover with foil & bake 35 minutes until
cheese is melted & zucchini is cooked through. Top
with scallions & serve with salsa on the side.
Serves 4


Fettuccini, Chicken & Tomato Dinner

1 (16 oz) pkg. fettuccini, uncooked
2 large boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 medium onion, chopped (large dice)
4 zucchini approx 5 inches long & 1 -1 1/2
inches in diameter
4 yellow zucchini -same size as above
2 cans diced tomatoes with Italian seasoning
1 tsp. dried Italian seasonings
1 T. minced garlic
1 T. oil
1/4 C. water
1 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Prepare fettuccini accordg. to pkg. directions,
cooking until al dente; drain & set aside. Cook
chicken on medium-high in nonstick skillet until
done. Set aside to cool; dice chicken into pieces.
Slice both zucchini into 1/4 inch medallions (may
have to cut some of the squash in half at larger
end). In same skillet over medium heat, saute onion
in oil. When almost translucent add zucchini &
water. Add garlic, & dried Italian seasonings. Cook
until zucchini are desired tenderness. Add both
cans tomatoes & continue cooking until heated
through. Add cooked fettuccini to skillet; toss to
blend. Sprinkle top with Parmesan before serving.
Serves 6-8.


One-Pot Chicken & Vegetables

1 T. olive oil
1 C. sliced zucchini
1 C. sliced or shredded carrot
1/2 C. sliced green onions or red onion
1/2 C. sliced celery
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 lb. cooked, diced chicken
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper
2 C. cooked brown rice, hot

Heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat.
Add zucchini, carrots, green or red onion &
celery; saute 5 minutes, stirring
occasionally. Add diced tomatoes & lower
heat. Simmer 5 minutes. Add chicken &
seasonings; simmer 3 minutes. Serve
chicken & vegetables over cooked rice.
Serves 4.

(recipe: Carolsrecipes77-Marys
Recipe Exchange)

Chicken Tortilla Soup

6 corn tortillas (6 inch), divided
1 1/2 tsp. oil, divided
1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts,
cut into bite-sized pieces
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans chicken broth
1 C. thick & chunky salsa (medium)
1 C. frozen corn
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Cut 2 tortillas into strips; toss with
1/2 tsp. oil. Spread in a single layer on
baking sheet & bake 10-12 minutes or until
crispy, stirring occasionally. Finely chop
remaining tortillas. Heat remaining oil
in large saucepan on medium-high heat.
Add chicken; cook & stir 5 minutes. Add
chopped tortillas, broth, salsa & corn; bring
to a boil. Simmer on medium-low heat
15 minutes. Serve topped with cheese &
tortilla strips. Serves 6 (1 C. each)

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Chocolate Buttermilk Pie

2 unbaked pie shells
2 sticks butter, room temp
3 3/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. flour
1/3 C. cocoa powder
6 eggs
1/4 tsp. salt (optional)
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 C. plus 2 oz. buttermilk*

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine sugar & butter; mix until
well blended. Beat in eggs; mix well.
Combine flour, cocoa & salt until
mixed, then add to butter mixture.
Add buttermilk to mixture; stir until
well combined. Pour into pie shells.
Bake 45 minutes; cool before cutting.

NOTE: 2 oz. is equal to 4 Tablespoons


Well, now that I’ve made myself drool over some of the above recipes, guess it’s time to get off here and start dinner. Dinner tonight is a meatloaf – one of my husband’s all-time favorite dinners. I’m thinking of doing baked potatoes with it and maybe a tossed salad – we’ll see.

Hope you’re having a really great day – remember to do something for yourself, no matter how little (even a 5 minute ‘rest/nap’ counts!).