Having FUN!!!

Middle son took husband & I out for a birthday breakfast today (Green Apple – my choice). I have not eaten there before but know that places like that usually have good food – had a great breakfast omelet & hash browns – YUM! Son insisted he get a picture of us to ‘remember the day’ so here we are – me in all my 71 year old glory & husband in his 67 yr old glory. It was a beautiful, sunny day (SO NICE – it’s been gloomy & rainy before today) – great day to get out. You KNOW it’s a good restaurant when, at 10-something a.m. the parking lot is FULL – think we got the LAST spot! When I’m out & about I make a point of saying Hi to our local Police & Firemen – I figure they get enough ‘crap’ in their day that maybe a friendly “YAY, WATERFORD!” might make their day. We saw firemen when we first came in and policemen on our way out. On the way out there was a group of about 8 older gentlemen – you could tell they probably did this ‘breakfast’ thing regularly but one passed us as he was going to his car – he had on an old NAVY cap so I made sure to tell him “Thank you for your service!” Again – a few kind words to people who MORE than deserve it – doesn’t take but a minute and might just make their day. He was so gracious: “Thank you, young lady!” – he smiled as he went his way.



Extraodinary Apple Lasagna

12 lasagna noodles
2 (21 oz, ea) cans apple pie filling
2 C. (8 oz) shredded Cheddar
1 C. Ricotta cheese
1 large egg, beaten
1/4 C. granulated sugar
6 T. flour
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
3 T. butter
6 T. light or dark brown sugar
1/4 C. quick oats
dash ground nutmeg

*Optional: Cool Whip,
thawed, for topping

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large pot of boiling water cook
noodles to desired doneness; drain
& set aside. Spray a 9 X 13″ baking
dish with nonstick spray. Layer
4 noodles on bottom of dish; spread
1 can pie filling on top (slicing any
extra-thick apples); layer 4 noodles
over apples. In large bowl mix Cheddar
cheese, Ricotta cheese, egg & granulated
sugar; spread evenly over noodles & top
with remaining 4 noodles. Spoon
remaining can pie filling over noodles.
In small bowl crumble together flour,
cinnamon, butter, brown sugar & quick
oats; sprinkle over pie filling. Bake
45 minutes. Let stand 15 minutes then
slice into serving-sized pieces – serve
warm or cold. (Serve with Cool Whip
on top, if desired.)

(recipe: mrfood.com)

Broken Lasagna with Zucchini/Tomato

kosher salt
2 large zucchini (about 1 3/4 lb),
coarsely grated
12 oz. lasagna noodles (not the no-
boil kind) – broken into bite-sized
3 T. unsalted butter
2 C. cherry tomatoes (1 C. whole,
1 C. halved)
1/2 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
fresh ground black pepper
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese plus
more for topping
1 small bunch chives, cut into 1-inch

Bring large pot of salted water to a
boil. In a colander set over a large
bowl toss grated zucchini with 1/2 tsp.
salt. Let stand 10 minutes then gently
squeeze out excess moisture. Add
pasta to boiling water & stir vigorously
to prevent sticking. Cook until al dente
about 12 minutes. Reserve 1/2 C. cooking
water, drain pasta. Heat butter in a large
skillet over medium-high heat. Add
tomatoes & cook until blistered & slightly
softened, about 4 minutes. Stir in zucchini
& lemon zest. Cook, lightly crushing tomatoes
with a wooden spoon until zucchini is
crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Season
with salt/pepper. Transfer zucc/tomato
mixture to a large bowl. Add pasta & cheese –
toss. Stir in half of chives & about 1/4 C.
reserved cooking water, adding more to
loosen, if needed. Season with salt/pepper
& divide among 4 bowls. Top with more
cheese & remaining chives. Serves 4

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)

Taco Pasta Casserole

2 C. (about 5.3 oz) uncooked medium
shell pasta
1 lb. ground beef
1 (16 oz) jar taco sauce or salsa
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of chicken
soup, undiluted
8 oz. diced Velveeta cheese
1 C. (4 oz) shredded Mexican cheese blend

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 11 X 7″ baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray.
Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions. Cook
beef in a Dutch oven over medium heat until
no longer pink; drain. Stir in taco sauce, soup &
Velveeta – heat through. Drain pasta & stir into
meat mixture – transfer to prepared pan.
Sprinkle top with shredded cheese. Cover &
bake 20 minutes until cheese melts.
Serves 4

(recipe: theseasonedmom.com)

Crockpot Summer Chicken
(serves 2)

2 chicken leg quarters (8 oz, ea), skin
3 T. ketchup
2 T. orange juice
1 T. brown sugar
1 T. red wine vinegar
1 T. olive oil
1 tsp. minced fresh parsley
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. cornstarch
1 T. cold water

Using a sharp knife, cut leg quarters at
the joints & place in 1 1/2 qt. crockpot.
In small bowl combine ketchup, orange
juice, brown sugar, vinegar, oil, parsley,
Worc. sauce, garlic salt & pepper – pour
over chicken. Cover & cook on Low 3-4
hours until meat is tender. Remove
chicken to a serving platter & keep warm.
Skim fat from cooking juices; transfer 1/2 C.
juices to a small saucepan & bring to boil.
Combine cornstarch & water until smooth;
gradually stir into pan & bring to a boil.
Cook & stir until thickened, about 2 minutes.
Serve with chicken – if desired, top with
fresh parsley. Serves 2

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

Easy Pepper Steak

3 T. cornstarch
1 3/4 C. beef broth or stock
1 T. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. garlic powder (or 1 clove
garlic, minced)
1 lb. boneless beef sirloin steak,
3/4-inch thick, cut into very thin strips
1 large green or red bell pepper, cut into
2″ long strips (about 2 C.)
1 medium onion, cut into thin wedges
1 C. long grain white rice, cooked accordg.
to pkg. directions (without salt) – about
3 C.

In a small bowl stir cornstarch, beef broth,
soy sauce & garlic powder until mixture
is smooth. In a 10″ nonstick skillet stir-fry
bee over medium-high heat until well
browned, stirring often. (drain any fat).
Reduce heat to medium; add pepper & onion.
Stir in cornstarch mixture & cook, stirring,
until mixture boils & thickens. Serve beef
over cooked rice. Serves 4

(recipe: campbells.com)

Spicy Italian Salad

2 hearts of Romaine lettuce, washed/
4 oz. deli ham slices, chopped
4 oz. deli sliced spicy salami, chopped
4 oz. deli sliced spicy capicolla, chopped
4 oz. deli sliced provolone cheese, chopped
1/2 C. jarred spicy sliced pepper rings,
1/2 C. roasted red bell pepper strips, drained/
patted dry with paper towels
1/2 C. sliced black olives

Creamy Italian Dressing:

1 C. mayonnaise
2 T. zesty Italian salad dressing mix
1/3 C. white vinegar
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
2 T. lemon juice

In a large salad bowl combine lettuce,
ham, salami, capicolla, provolone, pepper
rings, pepper strips & olives.
Combine Dressing ingredients in small
bowl & whisk until smooth; keep
refrigerated until ready to serve. Serve
salad with dressing. Serves 6

(recipe: iwashyoudry.com)

Shrimp/Watermelon & Avocado Salad

1 lb. shrimp, cooked/peeled
4 C. watermelon, coarsely chopped
1 medium sweet white onion, thinly sliced
1/2 C. cilantro, chopped
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded,
finely chopped (optional)
2 avocados, peeled/coarsely chopped
juice of 1 lime
1 tsp. honey
3 T. olive oil
3/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

In large bowl combine shrimp, watermelon,
onion, cilantro, jalapenos (if using) &
avocados. In separate bowl whisk lime
juice, honey, oil, salt/pepper. Pour dressing
over salad & toss gently. Set aside 10 minutes
to allow flavors to blend. Serves 4-6

(recipe: geiuskitchen.com)

Lemon Ice Box Cake

2 boxes lemon pudding mix
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
3 C. whole milk
1 (16 oz) pkg. graham crackers

Lemon Frosting:
1/2 C. (1 stick) butter, softened
2 C. powdered sugar
2 T. milk
2 T. lemon juice

Line a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
parchment paper or foil, cover
completely with one layer of
graham crackers (breaking some
as needed to fill gaps). In large
bowl combine pudding mix, Cool
Whip & milk; pour half of mixture
over crackers. Add another layer of
graham crackers; top with remaining
pudding mixture & one final layer
of graham crackers. In separate bowl
combine all frosting ingredients. Start
with 1 C. powdered sugar & add more
until frosting is at desired consistency.
Spread frosting evenly over cake, cover
& freeze at least 4 hours or overnight.
Remove from freezer, slice & serve.
Serves 8-12

(recipe: 12tomatoes.com)


As birthdays go, this one ‘was’ kind of poopy BUT-
things are looking up greatly! My car was in the
shop (on my birthday, Tues.) so I couldn’t go anywhere;
had read all my library books – really didn’t feel like knitting.
Was going to bake myself a cake BUT we didn’t have
any frosting (sigh) – I was just in a ‘funk’ – to say I was
cranky was an understatement. I decided to get out
of that mood by doing something for someone else.
Middle son works a lot of hours and his laundry was
SUPER backed up so I got it all done (even matched up
his socks – he lives by the motto: “Life’s too short to
wear matching socks!” (drives me nuts!). Got our
laundry caught up also & made Pork steak &
Alfredo noodles for dinner – that got me in a much
better state of mind. The next day (Weds. – my Knit
Library day) another friend/knitter who lives in my
neighborhood picked me up so I didn’t miss that.
I’m not usually one for ‘feeling sorry for myself’ but
this year it hit me a bit. 71 is not a big deal, I have
lots of friends who have done that age and are going
along in life JUST FINE! Oh well – I’m OVER all the
FUNK! It’s a gorgeous day – I’m in great health, I have
lots of great friends & family that love me – WHAT’S
to be in a funk about, anyway, right?
(OR – to say to myself what I’ve said to my sons at
times: “Suck it up, Buttercup!”)

Hope you are having a GREAT (or at least GOOD)
day! Life’s too short to go around grumpy, right?



A little bit of this ‘n that . . .

Today is another of those ‘lots of things going on’ days – example: just got off the phone with our local newspaper’s Delivery department. I’m usually not one to complain but sometimes ya just gotta! Felt bad calling in AGAIN but this makes 5 times in 2 weeks they’ve screwed up our newspaper delivery! I’ve called it in, they say “We’ll send you out a copy of the missed paper TOMORROW!” OK!!! Never comes – finally today was kind of the ‘last straw’ – Yes, I got a ‘paper’ – this one was the Community News section TWICE – also all the ‘ads’ for various stores – no REAL PAPER; no front page or sports section – just 2 copies of the Community News & lots of goofy ad/flyers! UGH! Spoke to a very nice gentleman who gave me $$$ credit for 5 missed papers, looked over my account AND said he’s submitting it to the District Manager to request I get a NEW carrier! YAY! FINALLY vindication! We’ll see how this goes. We’ve been receiving this paper since the 1970’s so I’m no newbie.

On another GREAT NEWS note: I have a HUGE PRAISE THE LORD! report. I have to see my general doctor every 3 months (due to being a previous cancer patient). Three months ago they took blood & the report came back with high red blood cells; Dr. said “Drink lots of water & we’ll check it again in 3 months, it could be a fluke in the test.” Went, again, last Thurs. – they drew blood (I get the results via email) – this time it showed high/elevated WHITE blood cell counts! This got me worried because the doctor mentioned that I might have to go back to the cancer doctor – sometimes after receiving radiation, the body will go a little wacky and the bone marrow starts OVER-producing red blood cells. The mention of going back to the cancer center kind of freaked me out – it’s been 5 1/2 YEARS since I’ve been cancer-free s0 you can understand my worry. (YES, I prayed about this BIG TIME!). My doctor said: “When you get the test results email, call the office & leave a message to have me review your labs.” I did that – Friday, Monday, Tuesday – only to hear he’s on vacation until NEXT FRIDAY! UGH! Today I got a call from another doctor covering his patients and she reviewed the labs & said EVERYTHING IS NORMAL! (I said: “But what about those 3 HIGHs in the white blood cells part?”) She said that was .1 % elevated – no big deal – could be caused by allergies. YAY! What a relief!!! For a few days now I’ve had thoughts of what it was like when I went through the cancer treatments – not a pleasant thing – makes you start to REALLY realize just how precious EVERY DAY is – especially with your family. TREASURE your families – make sure they KNOW you love and care for them – we only have THIS TIME to do that, tomorrow is not a given thing.


Lemon-Blueberry Cake

1 (18 oz.) box vanilla cake mix
plus ingredients to prepare cake
juice & zest of 1 1/2 lemons,
divided plus more zest for garnish
1 3/4 C. fresh blueberries, divided
3 T. flour

1 C. (2 sticks) butter, softened
2 1/2 to 3 C. powdered sugar
1/4 C. heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla
pinch kosher salt
2 thin slices lemon, for topping

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray three 9 inch cake pans
with nonstick cooking spray &
line with parchment paper. Prepare
cake mix accordg. to pkg. directions;
stir in juice & zest of 1 lemon. In
small bowl toss 1 C. blueberries &
flour until completely coated (to
keep blueberries from sticking).
Gently fold blueberries into batter.
Divide batter evenly among pans
& bake 18-20 minutes until a
toothpick inserted into centers
comes out clean. Let cake cool in
pans 10 minutes then invert onto
wire rack & cool completely.


In large bowl using elec. mixer
beat butter & 2 1/2 C. powdered
sugar. Add remaining lemon juice
& zest & heavy cream – beat until
combined then beat in vanilla &
salt. (add remaining 1/2 C.
powdered sugar if desired for
texture & flavor).
Place a dab of frosting on a cake
plate (to keep cake in place). Place
one cake layer on plate & top with
frosting – repeat with next 2 layers –
frost sides of cake. Garnish top
with remaining blueberries, lemon
slices & zest. Serves 8-10

(recipe: delish.com)

Honey Balsamic Grilled Chicken
&  Summer Veggies

1 1/2 lb. boneless skinless
chicken cutlets, sliced thin
3 T. pesto
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
juice from 1/2 lime
2 T. olive oil
3 T. balsamic vinegar
1 T. honey
kosher salt
1 lb. (bunch) asparagus, ends
2 medium zucchini, sliced 1/4″
1 red bell pepper, seeded/sliced
into strips
olive oil cooking spray

Marinate chicken with pesto, garlic,
red pepper flakes, lime juice &
1/2 tsp. salt at least 1 hour or
overnight. Mix oil, balsamic vinegar,
honey & 1/4 tsp. salt in small bowl.

Heat grill to medium-high heat – make
sure grates are clean & well-oiled to
prevent sticking.

Place veggies on 1 large grill tray or
2 smaller trays (or cook in batches).
spray with olive oil cooking spray,
season with salt/pepper & cook-
turning constantly until edges are
browned, about 6-8 minutes.
Remove from grill. Cook chicken
4-5 minutes on each side until
grill marks appear & chicken is
cooked through. Transfer to
platter with veggies & pour
balsamic dressing over all.
Serves 6

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)

Greek Hummus-stuffed Mini

12 assorted mini sweet peppers
(orange, red, yellow)
1/2 C. plain hummus
1/4 C. crumbled Feta cheese
1/4 C. chopped cucumbers
2 tsp. chopped chives

Cut off tops of peppers; remove
& discard seeds. Combine
remaining ingredients in a bowl
& stuff ingredients into peppers.
Serve. Makes 4 servings

(recipe: Kraft.com)
Capellini Caprese (salad)

1/2 lb. capellini pasta, uncooked
1/2 C. (Kraft) Tuscan Italian salad
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 C. halved grape tomatoes
1 C. shredded mozzarella
1/3 C. fresh basil, thinly sliced

Cook pasta as directed on pkg,
omitting salt. Heat salad dressing
in large nonstick skillet on medium-
high heat. Add onions & garlic; cook
& stir 2 minutes. Add tomatoes; cook
5 minutes until heated through,
stirring occasionally. Drain pasta; add
to tomato mixture & mix lightly. Sprinkle
with cheese & basil – serve.
Serves 4 (1 1/2 C. each)

(recipe: Kraft.com)

(Grill) Foil-Pan Grilled Sea Food
& Rice

3/4 C. (Kraft) sun-dried Tomato
vinaigrette salad dressing
1/2 C. chopped onion
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes,
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
1 1/2 C. long-grain white rice,
1 C. loosely packed fresh
3 cloves garlic
zest of 1 lemon
1 lb. cod fillets, cut into
1-inch chunks
1 lb. uncooked deveined/
peeled medium shrimp
1/3 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Heat grill to medium heat.
Combine salad dressing & onions
in deep 9 X 13″ disposable foil
pan; place on grill grate. Cook &
stir 4 minutes until onions are
crisp-tender. Stir in tomatoes, broth
& rice – bring to boil. Cover pan with
foil; reduce heat to Low. Close grill
lid & grill 20 minutes until almost
all liquid is absorbed, stirring every
5 minutes. In food processor, place
parsley, garlic & lemon zest – pulse
until just blended. Add cod to rice
mixture & cook 5 minutes. Stir in
shrimp – cook 4-6 minutes until cod
flakes easily with fork, shrimp turn
pink & rice is tender. Remove from
grill – stir in parsley mixture & top
with cheese. Serve warm.
Serves 8, 1 C. each

(recipe: Kraft.com)

3-ingredient S’Mores Cookie

6 graham cracker sheets*
6 large marshmallows
12 Hershey’s Kisses, unwrapped

Heat broiler & place oven rack
on lowest level

Break graham cracker sheets in
half; cut each half into a circle
using a 2 to 2 1/2 inch round
metal cookie cutter. Using
clean scissors, cut each
marshmallow into 2 halves.
Place graham circles in center
of large baking sheet, about
1/2 inch apart. Centering them
on the sheet allows even broiling.
Top each circle with a marshmallow,
cut sides down. Place under broiler
& watch very closely – toast until
golden, rotating pan. Once golden
immediately remove from oven
& gently press one Hershey’s
Kiss into center of each toasted
marshmallow. Serve warm.
Makes 12

*Poster says you can also substitute
Saltines or Ritz crackers for grahams.

(recipe: thecomfortofcooking.com)

Mini Zucchini Pizza appetizers

1 large zucchini (about 11 oz),
cut into 1/4 inch slices/rounds
1/8 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
1/3 C. pizza sauce
3/4 C. shredded mozzarella
1/2 C. miniature pepperoni slices
minced fresh basil

Preheat broiler. Spray a baking
sheet with nonstick cooking spray
& arrange zucchini rounds in single
layer on sheet. Broil 3-4 inches
from heat just until crisp-tender,
1-2 minutes per side. Sprinkle
tops with salt/pepper & top with
sauce, cheese & pepperoni. Broil
until cheese melts, about 1 minute.
Sprinkle tops with basil & serve.
Makes about 24 rounds.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
Easy Homemade (no churn)
Ice Cream

2 C. heavy whipping cream
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed
food coloring, if desired
1 C. fresh raspberries, pureed or
1 T. vanilla

Combine sweetened cond. milk &
vanilla in large bowl; stir in pureed
fruit & food coloring (if using). In
another bowl using an elec. mixer
on medium-high speed, whip heavy
cream until stiff peaks form. (Do
NOT use Cool Whip). Fold whipped
cream into berry/milk mixture &
pour into a 9 X 5″ loaf pan or 2 qt.
freezer container. Cover & freeze
4-6 hours until firm.
Serves 6

(recipe: thebakingchocolatess.com)


In light of all that’s been happening
health-scare wise, today I called two
of my close lady friends (we’ve all
known each other since High School
and all go to the same church) and
got together a “Ladies Out” lunch
date next week. We’ve been saying
we need to do this again but never
quite got it organized – well, now
that’s in the works! I need to realize
or, in Latin: Carpe diem:

A shortened version of the original Latin phrase
Carpe diem quam minimum credula postero”
meaning “seize the day, trusting as little as
possible in the future

Our weather is back in the high 70’s,
sunny & breezy; time to take my
knitting outside!

Hope you are enjoying this lovely
summer weather – it won’t be around
for much longer (unless it stays
warm through September – I wish!)





After waiting 2 days, I finally got to hold him! Days were hectic and I am not one to impose myself on others, but last night oldest son texted me the baby was up & active, did I want to come over & hold him? OF COURSE! Picture is a little blurry (son was trying to use my camera and the flash had been shut off, plus baby was fussing a bit – at first). I had a great time just chatting with his parents and holding him while he slept – for THREE hours! Both parents kept saying they’ve never seen him so relaxed – told them it’s the Grandma Touch. Many years ago, at another church nursery, I was always the person they gave the fussy babies to – don’t know what I did/do, but it seems to work. I had a great time!


Cappuccino Magic Cake

6 T. unsalted butter
3 large eggs, room temp,
3/4 C. granulated sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon (more for serving)
1/8 tsp. salt
1 1/2 C. milk
5 tsp. instant expresso powder
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

powdered sugar, for dusting
whipped cream/Cool Whip,
for serving

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Place oven rack in center of oven.
Line a 8 X 8″ baking pan with a
12 X 8″ piece of parchment paper,
leaving an overhang on 2 sides.
Melt butter in small microwave-
safe bowl, about 1 minute. Brush
parchment paper with some of
butter; flip paper over & press
back into pan – brush other side
& sides of the pan with butter.
Whisk egg yolks & sugar
vigorously in large bowl until
pale, creamy & thick (1-2 minutes)
Pour in remaining butter & whisk
until incorporated. Add flour,
cinnamon & salt; mixing until
completely combined. Heat milk
in microwaveable bowl or
measuring cup until warm, 1
minute. Whisk espresso powder &
vanilla into milk until completely
dissolved. Slowly add milk mixture
to egg yolk mixture, whisking
constantly until well combined
(batter will be thin). Beat egg
whites & cream of tartar in another
bowl using elec. mixer on medium
speed until stiff peaks form, about
2 minutes. Scrape whites into yolk
mixture, gently breaking them up
a little with a whisk. Using a whisk,
gently stir & fold mixture a few times
to coat the whites with liquid while
keeping as much volume as possible
(batter will not totally come together).
Pour batter into prepared pan & gently
smooth top with a spatula. Bake until
top is browned & puffed & cake is
mostly set with a slight jiggle in the
center, about 1 hour. Let cake cool
completely in pan, about 2 hours.

To Serve:
Dust top of cake with some powdered
sugar & a little cinnamon. Run a small
spatula or thin knife around edges of
pan to loosen. Use parchment paper
overhang to lift cake from pan – place
on a cutting board & cut cake into
9 squares – serve topped with whipped
cream or Cool Whip. Makes 9 servings.

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)

Mongolian Shrimp & Broccoli

3 T. soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, grated
1 ginger, grated
3 T. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1 1/2 lb. shrimp without tails,
1/3 C. cornstarch
canola oil
1 large head broccoli, cut into

Cooked rice to serve 4

In small bowl combine soy sauce,
garlic, ginger, brown sugar & pepper.
In medium bowl season shrimp with
salt & mix with cornstarch until well
coated. In large skillet over medium-
high heat, add 1 T. oil & cook broccoli
until tender, 2 minutes. Add soy sauce
mixture & cook 1 minute. Add shrimp
& stir until cooked through & broccoli
is slightly charred. Serve immediately.
Serves 4

(recipe: delish.com)
Skinny Texas Cheese Fries

4-5 medium Yukon Gold or Russet
2 T. olive oil
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 C. Cheddar cheese, grated
1 T. bacon, cooked/crumbled
1 T. cilantro, chopped
1 T. green onions, chopped

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Wash potatoes; slice into 1/2 inch
strips. Lay potato strips face down
in 2 piles; slice each pile into 1/2
inch strips. Place them in a bowl
& drizzle 2 T. olive oil over top.
In small bowl combine chili powder,
seasoned salt, paprika & garlic –
sprinkle seasoning over top of
potatoes & toss, using tongs,
making sure all slices get covered
with seasoning. Generously spray
2 large cookie sheets with nonstick
spray. Lay potatoes out evenly, making
sure none overlap. Bake 25 minutes.
Test with a fork to be sure they are
soft in centers. Remove from oven &
sprinkle tops with salt. Using a spatula,
place all fries into a deep 9 X 9″ casserole
dish (or deep dish pie plate). Sprinkle
with Cheddar cheese & bacon crumbles.
Place pan in oven & allow cheese to melt,
2-3 minutes. sprinkle top with chopped
cilantro & green onions & serve.
Serves 6

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)

Crockpot Anything Goes Sausage Soup
(cooks for 9-10 hours)

1 lb. bulk pork sausage
4 C. water
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of
mushroom soup, undiluted
1 (10 3/4 oz) can condensed
Cheddar cheese soup, undiluted
5 medium red potatoes, cubed
4 C. chopped cabbage
3 large carrots, thinly sliced
4 celery ribs, chopped
1 medium zucchini, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
5 chicken bouillon cubes
1 T. dried parsley flakes
3/4 tsp. pepper
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk

In large skillet cook sausage over
medium heat until no longer pink;
drain & transfer to 6 qt. crockpot.
Stir in water & soups until blended.
Add vegetables, bouillon, parsley
& pepper. Cover & cook on Low
9-10 hours until vegetables are
tender. Stir in milk, cover & cook
30 minutes longer.
Serves 15 (4 qts)

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

Homemade Guacamole

2 ripe Haas avocados
4 T. minced red onion
1 tsp. (or more) hot sauce
2 T. minced cilantro
1 tsp. lime juice
1 T. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt
few grinds black pepper
1/2 of a ripe tomato, seeded/
skinned & diced

Crackers or chips, for dipping

Run a knife around outside of
avocados from top to bottom &
back to top. Cut down to it; using
a twisting motion, twist avocado
halves apart. Tap pit with the edge
of a knife so that knife partially
goes into pit – turn knife & pit will
come out. (be careful not to swing
too hard & hit your hand). Run a
soup spoon between avocado pulp
& skin – place pulp in a medium
bowl; mash slightly with a fork,
leaving large chunks.
Add all other ingredients (except
tomato); adjust seasoning as needed.
When ready to serve, sprinkle
diced tomato on top. Makes 2 Cups

NOTE: If, after preparing the guacamole,

when ready to serve, place the PIT in the

middle of the guacamole – it will keep it from

turning brown.

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)

30 Minute Chicken Cordon Bleu Pasta
(uses rotisserie chicken & oven-proof

1 (12 oz) pkg. bowtie pasta
2 T. butter
1 C. chicken broth
2 C. Half & Half
2 (10 oz, ea) cans cream of chicken soup
1 tsp. honey mustard
1/4 tsp. onion powder
salt/pepper, to taste
3 T. sour cream
2 C. cooked rotisserie chicken, chopped
2 C. deli ham, chopped (or leftover ham)
8 slices Swiss cheese
1 1/4 C. Italian Panko bread crumbs*

Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions. Heat
butter in medium skillet over medium-high
heat. Add chicken broth, Half & Half & both
cans soup – whisk to combine. Add honey
mustard, onion powder & salt/pepper – stir
& bring to simmer, stirring occasionally. Allow
to simmer 4-5 minutes until slightly thickened.
Add chopped chicken, ham & sour cream to
skillet then drained/cooked pasta – stir together.
Lay slices of Swiss cheese on top of mixture then
sprinkle bread crumbs on top.
Turn on broiler
Place under broiler & cook until golden brown –
just a few minutes; watch so you don’t burn it.
Remove from oven & allow to cool a little before
serving. Serves 6-8

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)

Crockpot Mexican Beer Chicken

6-8 bone-in/skin on chicken thighs
1 bottle dark (Mexican) beer
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder

Mix all seasonings in a small bowl;
sprinkle each thigh with blend & place
in crockpot. Pour in beer*. Cover &
Frozen: 4-6 hours on High or 8-10 on Low
Thawed: 3-4 hours on High or 7-8 on low

*Poster said she pours the beer down the
side of the crockpot so as not to wash all
the seasonings off the chicken.

(recipe: bobbiskozykitchen.com)

Sugar Cookie Apple Crisp

2 T. butter, melted/cooled
1/4 C. brown sugar, packed
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. allspice
1 pinch nutmeg
pinch salt
6 medium apples, peeled/
cored/chopped into bite-
sized chunks
1 (14 oz) pkg. refrigerated
sugar cookie dough, broken
into chunks
1/2 C. rolled oats

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 9″ casserole or
deep-dish baking dish with
nonstick spray. In large bowl
combine butter, sugar, lemon
juice, cinnamon, allspice,
nutmeg & salt. Add apples &
toss to coat. Scrape sides of
bowl with spatula & transfer
to prepared dish. Using a food
processor (or blender), add
cookie dough & oats – pulse
several times until mixture
resembles coarse, wet sand.
Use your hands to sprinkle
mixture on top of apples.
Bake 20-25 minutes until
topping is lightly browned
& apples bubble. Let cool
slightly before serving.
Serves 6

(recipe: food.com)

Our weather has been a bit goofy – if you
read the weather reports we’re supposed to
be getting COLD weather, but each day it keeps
getting warmer (for example: woke up & it was
35 degrees F. – a few hours later it’s almost 55!)
I can definitely take this weather but having
grown up in good old Michigan, I KNOW we will
probably get some snow before or during Easter –
wouldn’t be the first time.

Nothing much new going on (except the baby, of
course) – gas prices keep fluctuating between
$2.19/9 and $2.29/9 – not sure just why but as
long as they stay in that range, we’re good.

Tonight is Knit/Crochet night – still working on
both baby blankets – slowly plodding along.

Have a GREAT day!




Lots more recipes!


Another sunny day – temps almost to 46 degrees F. which is a GOOD thing! Today is a ‘mixed bag’ – finished the blue & brown baby blanket for my friend (I’ll photo later, probably after I knit a hat & booties to go with it); baked 2 loaves of Banana Nut Bread (the really easy kind using cake mix), did a load of laundry, spent a considerable amount of time attempting to locate a photo from 2005 of my brother & I. It took me awhile to realize that the reason why I can’t seem to find it on a disc is because that was before I had a digital camera! That means that NOW I have to try to locate negatives – oh, brother. I’ve looked (& cleaned out a small cupboard) & looked (cleaned out all the drawers in my desk AND the miscellaneous box next to the desk) and looked (dragged down at least 4 bags of varying sizes full of little photo/negative envelopes from upstairs) but – nope – can go back before 1994, but not find 2005! My house is such a rabbit warren that WHO KNOWS where they could be? Oh well – I’ll just keep looking.


Enchilada Chicken Wings

Cilantro Dip:
1 C. sour cream
1 C. cilantro, loosely packed
2 cloves garlic, grated

2 1/2 lb. chicken wings, separated
at joint, tips removed
2 tsp. taco seasoning mix (Old El Paso)
oil, for frying
1 (10 oz) can enchilada sauce

Combine sour cream, cilantro & garlic
in small food processor or blender;
process until smooth. Season with
salt, refrigerate until serving.

Preheat oven to ‘warm’ setting & place
a cooling rack on top of a baking sheet.
Heat large, heavy skillet with about 1 inch
oil, to 350 degrees F. Sprinkle taco
seasoning on both sides of wings. Working
in 2 batches, add wings to oil & fry until
cooked through, about 5 minutes on each
side. Use tongs to transfer cooked wings
to cooling rack & place in oven to keep
warm. Once wings are cooked, toss in
bowl with enchilada sauce; stir to coat.
Serve immediately with cilantro dip.
Serves 4

(recipe: tasteandtellblog.com)
Zucchini Pizza Bites

1 T. olive oil
2 zucchini cut into 1/4″ thick rounds
kosher salt
fresh ground black pepper
marinara sauce
pepperoni slices (optional)
shredded mozzarella or provolone
fresh chopped parsley

Preheat broiler to 500 degrees F.
In a large skillet over medium-high heat,
heat oil. Working in batches, cook
zucchini slices about 1-2 minutes per
side until golden brown; season with
salt/pepper & place on a foil-lined
baking sheet. Top each slice with a
dollop of marinara sauce, 1 slice
pepperoni (if using) and sprinkle
tops with cheese. Broil until cheese
melts, 1-2 minutes; remove from
oven & garnish with parsley.

(recipe: hipfoodiemom.com)

Chocolate-Peanut Butter Sheet Cake

2 C. flour
2 C. sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 C. water
1/2 C. butter, cubed
1/2 C. creamy peanut butter
1/4 C. baking cocoa
3 large eggs
1/2 C. sour cream
2 tsp. vanilla

3 C. powdered sugar
1/2 C. creamy peanut butter
1/2 C. milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. chopped salted (or unsalted)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick spray. In large bowl
whisk flour, sugar, baking soda &
salt. In a small saucepan combine
water, butter, peanut butter &
cocoa; bring to a boil, stirring
occasionally; add to flour mixture,
stirring just until moistened. In
small bowl whisk eggs, sour cream &
vanilla until blended; add to flour
mixture, whisking constantly; pour
into prepared pan. Bake 25-30 minutes
until a toothpick inserted into center
comes out clean.
(While cake bakes) In large bowl
beat powdered sugar, peanut butter
milk & vanilla until smooth. Remove
cake from oven & place on wire rack.
Immediately spread frosting on cake &
top with peanuts. Cool completely.
Serves 15

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

Fried Chicken Nuggets

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 C. ice water
1 egg
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 C. flour (plus another handful)
canola or peanut oil, for frying

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Get ice water ready.
Heat oil(a few inches) in large skillet
to 375 degrees F. Cut chicken into
1″ pieces & pat dry using paper towels;
toss chicken with a handful of flour.
In large bowl whisk egg & ice water
together. Add 3/4 C. flour, salt, pepper
& baking soda; stir until almost all
of flour is incorporated. Add another
1/4 c. flour & ONLY stir 2-3 times. Dip
each chicken piece in batter, tap it
against side of bowl to remove any
excess batter & place in oil. Fry until
pieces are golden brown; transfer
to a cooling rack or paper towels.
Lightly salt (optional)

(recipe: souschefs.blogspot.in)
Bacon-Tater Snacks

2 C. tater tots, frozen & thawed
to room temp
1 oz. sharp Cheddar cheese, cut
into 1/4″ squares
4 slices bacon, quartered
1/4 C. brown sugar
1 T. chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Line a baking sheet with parchment
paper. Starting with a bacon piece,
lay one tater tot in center of bacon,
top with cheese & roll up; secure
with a toothpick. Roll tots in brown
sugar & place tots, seam
sides down, on prepared sheet.
Bake 20-25 minutes, turning once
halfway through baking time. Garish
tots with parsley (if using) & serve

(recipe: homemadesimple.com)
30-Minute Buffalo Chicken Salad

3/4 C. mayonnaise
1/4 C. sour cream
2 T. hot sauce
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3 C. cooked, diced chicken
3/4 C. celery, diced
1/2 C. sweet onion, diced

8 dinner rolls, split (poster
used potato dinner rolls)

In large bowl combine mayo,
sour cream, hot sauce & seasonings
until well mixed. Stir in chicken,
celery & onion; mix well. Fill
rolls with chicken mixture.
Makes 8

(recipe: gooseberrypatch.typepad.
Crockpot Spinach Dip

1 (20 oz) pkg. frozen spinach
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, cubed
2 C. Parmesan cheese, grated
1 pkt. dry onion soup/dip mix
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 C. sour cream
4 garlic cloves, minced

tortilla chips, slices of a
baguette or cut fresh

Place frozen spinach in a
colander; run warm water
over spinach until it thaws.
Using a few thick paper towels,
thoroughly blot water off the
spinach; place spinach in bottom
of crockpot. Add cream cheese
cubes, Parm. cheese, dry onion
soup mix, Worc. sauce, sour cream
& minced garlic to crockpot; stir a
bit. Cover & cook on High 90 minutes
to 2 hours; stir until creamy. Serve
with tortilla chips, slices of a
baguette or cut fresh vegetables.
Serves 10-15 servings

(recipe: 365daysofcrockpot.com)
Bacon-Horseradish Dip

8 slices bacon, cooked/crumbled
1 T. canola oil (or 1 T. bacon fat)
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1 (3 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 C. sour cream
1 T. prepared horseradish
1 1/4 tsp. stone ground mustard
1/2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
1/4 tsp. salt

Cook onion & garlic in 1 T. bacon fat
(or oil); cooking over medium heat
3-4 minutes. Place mixture in a bowl
with bacon. Stir in cream cheese, sour
cream, horseradish, mustard, pepper/
salt until well blended. Refrigerate
at least 2 hours to blend flavors.
Serve chilled or at room temp (dip
spreads easily at room temp).

(recipe: palatablepastime.com)

Easy Blender Chocolate Mousse

1 (12 oz) pkg. semi-sweet chocolate
1/2 C. granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 C. milk, scalded

whipping cream or Cool Whip,
for topping

Add choc. chips, sugar & eggs to a
blender; pulse about 30 seconds
until ingredients are mixed & choc.
chips are cut into smaller pieces. Pour
in scalding hot milk & blend on medium
speed until mixture is very smooth &
choc. chips have melted completely.
Pour into small serving glasses &
chill until firm. Top with whipped
cream or Cool Whip for serving.
Recipe filled 10 small dessert

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)


A little earlier this house was filled with
lots of (in good fun) teasing/yelling/
groaning as two of my sons and one
of their friends were practicing to go
to a “Super Smash Brothers” tournament.
The guys are all in their 20’s and were
having a great time attempting to beat
each other before heading off to the
gaming. I told them “You head out like
Warriors and return as Winners!” (I
hope). I love hearing them have a good
time together – you never get too old
to enjoy the sounds of laughter in
the house!

Hope you’re enjoying your day!



Great Night!


Last night was our Knit/Crochet & Yarn Swap night – we had 23 in attendance, some who haven’t come in a LONG time! I admit I’d been a little trepidacious about people bringing yarn, but I was VERY wrong! We had tons of yarn, needles/hooks, some books and a few other craft items; the ladies were happy and I ended up picking up enough white, lavender & dark purple yarn to make another baby blanket for the Detroit Vet’s Baby shower! There was enough ‘leftovers’ for me to have a large bag to take to our local Seniors center – they have a knit or crochet group there that might be able to use the yarn. My friend who’s expecting in June came & I was able to give her all the baby items I’d made for her. Finished the hedgehog, too, and when she saw it she said: “Everyone KNOWS I love hedgehogs!” (well – I didn’t but was SO glad I made it & she liked it.)


(sort of has a fox face here)


Husband said his nose is a little too long, but . . . oh, well – SHE liked it! Maybe if I make another one I could tweak it a little bit; as it was I ended up making the body longer – he was about 12 inches long.


Strawberry Icebox Cake

3 lb. strawberries, sliced
1 (14.4 oz) box Honey graham crackers
3 (8 oz, ea) tubs Cool Whip, thawed

* Each Cool Whip layer uses one entire
(8 oz) tub (besides the first thin layer).
* Each strawberry layer uses about 1 lb.
of sliced strawberries

In a 9 X 13″ pan spread a thin layer of Cool
Whip just to coat the bottom. Lay 5 graham
crackers across the center of pan, then 2
more, breaking them as needed to fit around
the top & bottom edges. Spread a thick
layer of Cool Whip (just use remaining Cool
Whip from first step) over grahams & top with
a hearty layer of sliced strawberries. Place
graham crackers on top of strawberries, then
Cool Whip, then strawberries. Repeat layers
one more time (3 times total) – you should
reach the top of the pan. Finish with a layer
of sliced strawberries. Refrigerate at least
4 hours or overnight until graham crackers
have softened completely. Serve chilled.
serves 16-20

(recipe: sprinklesomesugar.com)

Honey BBQ Brisket

1 brisket (4-5 lbs)
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika (optional)
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 1/2 C. honey BBQ sauce
1/3 C. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cornstarch
salt & pepper, to taste

Sprinkle brisket with salt & pepper. Mix
onion & garlic powders, smoked paprika,
cumin & cayenne pepper in small bowl.
Dry rub both sides of brisket with mixture.
Stir together honey BBQ sauce & brown
sugar; pour half of mixture into bottom of
crockpot. Place seasoned brisket, fatty side
up, in crockpot. Cover brisket with remaining
sauce. Cover & cook on Low 8-10 hours or
until fork tender. Remove from crockpot &
let cool, then slice.
In small bowl combine cornstarch & water
until it’s completely smooth. Pour mixture
into bowl of sauce & stir to combine, then
pour on top of sliced meat. Place meat &
sauce back in crockpot for 30-60 minutes
to melt flavors.

(recipe: crockpotmoms)

Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Peppers

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
cut into bite-sized pieces (or 3 C. cooked)
salt/black pepper
1 C. corn
1 C. cooked brown or white rice
1 C. (packed) fresh chopped spinach
2 heaping Cups sharp Cheddar cheese,
4-5 bell peppers

2 T. butter
2 T. flour
1 (14 oz) can chicken broth
1 (14 oz) can Ro*Tel diced green chiles &
4 oz cream cheese
1/2 C. sour cream, plus more for serving

Add 1 T. olive oil to large skillet over medium
heat; season chicken with salt/pepper & cook,
turning to brown on all sides. Remove to large
bowl & mix with rice, corn, spinach & 1 1/2 C.
cheese. In medium saucepan melt butter over
medium-low heat. Stir in flour & cook 2-3
minutes, stirring often. Whisk in chicken broth
& bring to simmer 3 more minutes, stirring
often. Turn heat to Low & mix in Ro*Tel; add
cream cheese & sour cream to a medium bowl;
add a ladle of hot broth to bowl & stir with a
spoon, then add another ladle of broth, stir then
add to sauce (this prevents curdling). Whisk
until it is completely combined; remove from
heat & allow to cool to lukewarm.

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray a large roasting pan with nonstick spray.
Wash peppers & cut off tops; remove seeds &
white centers; place in roasting pan. Season
sauce to taste with salt/pepper. Mix about 1
C. sauce into chicken mixture to start, adding
more if needed. You want it well coated but
not swimming in it. Spoon stuffing into peppers,
top with remaining cheese. Spoon or slowly
pour remaining sauce into bottom of pan.
Bake 35-40 minutes until peppers are tender. If
tops start to brown too much, cover with foil.
Let stand 5 minutes before serving. To serve,
spoon sauce onto a plate or dish then top with
a pepper & a dollop of sour cream. Serves 4

(recipe: cinnamospiceandeverythingnice.com)

One Pan Mexican Quinoa

1 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, minced
1 C. quinoa
1 C. vegetable broth
1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed/
1 (14.5 oz) can fire-roasted diced
1 C. corn kernels
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cumin
kosher salt/ground black pepper,
to taste
1 avocado, halved/seeded/peeled &
juice of 1 lime
2 T. chopped fresh cilantro

Heat olive oil in large skillet over
medium-high heat. Add garlic & jalapeno;
cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant,
about 1 minute. Stir in quinoa, vegetable
broth, beans, tomatoes, corn, chili
powder & cumin; season with salt/pepper.
Bring to boil, cover & reduce heat to
simmer. Simmer until quinoa is cooked
through, about 20 minutes. Stir in
avocado, lime juice & cilantro. Serve
immediately. Serves 4

(recipe: damndelicious.net)
Yellow Squash Casserole

2 lb. yellow squash (about 4 C.)
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed
(about 35)
1 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
2 eggs
3/4 C. milk
1/2 C. butter, melted
salt/pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
LIghtly steam squash & onion in
steamer basket about 5 minutes;
drain & set aside. In medium bowl
combine cracker crumbs & cheese.
In large bowl add drained squash &
onion; gently fold in 1/2 cracker/
cheese mixture. In small bowl whisk
together egg & milk then add to
squash mixture. Add half of melted
butter to squash mixture; mix &
season with salt/pepper. Spread
mixture into a greased 9 X 13″ baking
dish. Top with remaining crackers &
pour remaining butter over dish.
Bake 25 minutes until lightly brown.

(recipe: Nancy Miller/Facebook)
Crab Cakes with Chipotle Aioli

1/2 C. mayonnaise
1 (14.5 oz) can (Red Gold) petite diced
tomatoes with chipotle, drained
1 (6 oz) box cornbread stuffing mix
1 C. boiling water
3 eggs, beaten
2 (6 oz, ea) cans crab meat, drained/flaked
salt/pepper, to taste
3 T. olive oil

Combine mayonnaise & tomatoes to make
Chipotle Aioli – set aside.
Place stuffing mix in large bowl; add water &
stir to just moisten – let stand 5 minutes. Add
eggs, crab meat, salt/pepper to stuffing mix;
stir to combine – shape into 6 patties. Add oil
to skillet & heat over medium heat – add patties
& cook 5 minutes per side until lightly browned.
Serve with Chipotle Aioli on top of each cake.
Makes 6 cakes.

(recipe: redgoldtomatoes.com)
Amish Broccoli Bake

1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of mushroom
1 C. mayonnaise
1/2 C. chopped onion
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 (10 oz, ea) pkgs. frozen chopped
broccoli, thawed
1 c. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1 (6 oz) box herbed stuffing mix
1/4 C. (1/2 stick) butter, melted/

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 3 qt casserole dish with
nonstick spray. In medium bowl
combine soup, mayo, onion, salt/
pepper; mix well and gently stir
in broccoli. Place half broccoli in
dish; sprinkle with half the cheese
& half the stuffing mix.
Pour half the butter & half the
soup over stuffing; repeat layers
one more time. Bake 35-40 minutes
or until hot in center.
Serves 8

(recipe: mrfood.com)

New York Crumb Cake

4 C. flour
1/2 C. sugar
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 large egg, slightly beaten
1/2 C. milk
2 T. vegetable oil
2 tsp. vanilla

Crumb Topping:
1 C. light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 C. (2 sticks) butter, melted/cooled

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Grease & flour 9 X 13″ baking dish. In
medium bowl combine flour, sugar, baking
powder & salt. In separate medium bowl
combine egg, milk, vegetable oil & vanilla;
fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients
using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula.
Spread batter into prepared pan, smooth
out batter. In medium bowl combine
topping ingredients; crumble topping
over cake using your hands, leaving some
of the crumbs large. Bake 35-40 minutes
until a toothpick inserted into center
comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.
Serves 15-18

Store covered & use within 2-3 days

(recipe: lovebakesgoodcakes.com)


Our weather is still holding at chilly temps, a
little rain & cloudy – not to worry Friday it’s
supposed to get up to 73 (BUT) also 60%
chance of showers likely – hey, it’s Spring!

Gas prices are still holding at $2.46/9 –
OK, but not great but what can ya do?

Tonight is my special needs group’s
Music/Birthday night so I’d better
conserve some energy for that. We
have a great time singing the various
Christian songs they know, having a
small devotion, prayer request time
and then it’s CELEBRATE! Each month
we have this for the kids whose
birthdays fall in that particular month
but EVERYBODY gets cupcakes, so they
love the evening. I’ve been with the
group now since Oct., 1993 and I never
tire of being with them and enjoying
their enthusiasm at life and their love
for the Lord – it doesn’t get any better
than this!

Enjoy your day!




Of Cops and Coupons


Today was my day for getting things done; started by baking 2 loaves of gingerbread and a dozen blueberry muffins (for our 3 neighbors) – that went well. Next was a trip to Kohl’s – a store I rarely shop. They have great deals and I still needed a few more presents for the guys so I went. I always make sure I (1) know where I parked and (2) always – ALWAYS lock my car! The shopping took about 45 minutes plus a good 35 minutes just standing in line to check-out. Got all done, walked out to the parking lot and couldn’t find my car! I knew EXACTLY where I parked – walked the entire lot twice, praying all the way: “Lord, please find my car!” (Side note here: husband & I spend about 2 1/2 – 3 hours yesterday moving all of middle son’s belongings from his apartment – almost all of that ‘stuff’ was in the back of my car – believe me, I was more panicking for HIS belongs than my car.) Finally I called my husband who told me to go inside the store and wait for him; meanwhile he called the local police for that area. I waited a good 20 minutes, easy – no husband, no police. Husband had called me back to say that the dispatcher asked if I knew where my car was, “Are you sure she didn’t go out another exit?” (I was SURE – I KNEW where I parked it!). While just standing and waiting a thought kept inkling in my brain: “Are you REALLY sure?” Finally I asked the next woman who came through the doors if the road out front was M-59? She said, No and pointed to the right – OH BROTHER! Believe me – I sprinted around the corner of that store and hit the PANIC button on my car (I had done this numerous times before and not heard that beep,beep from my car – that’s why I was sure it was stolen!) Yep – you guessed it: “Beep! Beep!” Oh my goodness was I embarrassed. I spotted the police car in front of the store and he was walking up to me while I was walking up to him. I yelled: “I found it!” He said; “I found it, too!” Of course, I apologized tons to him – he said they get numerous calls every day from people who do that – go out another exit of a store and can’t find their car. What a relief, though! You better believe I told the Lord TONS of times how grateful I was.  Crazy – eh? (husband arrived after the policeman had left, so we sat in husband’s car while I de-stressed (read that: cried/bawled my eyes out in relief), then we both headed for home. All I could think (at the time) was this has been a very stressful Christmas time already with son in hospital, but to add a stolen car & contents to it – impossible!

After calming down I took a trip to Walgreen’s drug store; I know I’ve told you before how visits to drug stores can reap you bargains in grocery items (today peanut butter, Miracle Whip, garbage bags). Finished up almost all of the stocking stuffers; because this year has been so stressful and I’ve been a little more scattered than normal, I found out I totally forgot 4 of my ‘teen helpers’ for my special needs group! I usually get them something little, just as a thank you; I was glad to pick up some nice things at Walgreen’s to finish that off (I already told them that I’ll give them their presents when we return to the group January 7th).

How are your gas prices lately? Earlier today I drove by my regular Clark station and their lowest price was $2.19/9 – about 2 hours later I drove by again and it’s at $2.14/9! Pretty nice! Add the low gas prices to our weather really being great and those are two blessings I’m very happy to receive since we’re driving back & forth to the hospital every other day (about 60 miles, one way).


Spiced Pudding Squares

1/2 C. butter, melted/cooled
1 egg
1 (2 layer) pkg. spice cake mix
1 (3.4 oz) pkg. vanilla instant pudding mix
1 C. cold milk
1 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 C. Cool Whip, thawed
2 T. toffee bits

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Mix first 3 ingredients just until blended;
press onto bottom of 9 X 13 pan sprayed
with nonstick spray. Bake 15-17 minutes
or until toothpick inserted into center comes
out clean; cool completely. Beat dry pudding
mix, milk & spice in medium bowl with
whisk 2 minutes. Stir in Cool Whip until
blended; spread over crust. Refrigerate
2 hours. Sprinkle top with toffee bits
just before serving. Makes 24 servings

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Crockpot Queso Dip

3/4 lb. ground beef or sausage,
2 lb. block Velveeta cheese
2 chopped tomatoes & jalapenos*
1 (7 oz) can diced roasted chiles,
canned or fresh
diced onions
diced green peppers (optional

Corn chips, tortillas, etc. for

Saute onion & green peppers in
a little oil in a skillet until lightly
brown; spoon into bottom of (mini)
crockpot or dish you will prepare
dip in. Spoon cooked meat into
crockpot. Cut Velveeta into large
cubes; add to crockpot. Top with
chopped tomatoes, jalapenos &
cook on Low heat until cheese has
melted & ingredients are well
combined – stir occasionally.

*Ro-Tel works well for this

(recipe: myfridgefood.com)

Chocolate Chip Cream Cheese Cookies

1 can seamless crescent rolls
1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, room temperature

1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

With your hand mixer, beat sugar, cream cheese and
vanilla together until smooth in a medium sized bowl.
Unroll the crescent roll sheet. Stretch dough out slightly.
It should be in the shape of a rectangle. Spread cream
cheese mixture over the top of the crescent sheet,
leaving a gap at the edge about 1/2 inch. Sprinkle
chocolate chips on top of cream cheese. Roll the
crescent sheet up tightly and wrap in cling wrap.
Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.

When chilled preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper to prevent
sticking. Slice the crescent roll into 1/4″ slices. Bake on
prepared cookie sheet for 12 -14 minutes until crescent
roll appears golden brown.
Transfer to wire rack; eat warm or room temperature.

(recipe: Facebook)

Mock Pizza Casserole

2 lb. meat: ground beef, Italian sausage,
ham, pepperoni (your choice)
2 (24 oz, ea) jars spaghetti sauce
24 oz. PLUS – Mozzarella cheese (how
ever much YOU want)
1/3 C. Parmesan cheese
Veggies: green pepper, onion, olives,
mushrooms, spinach,or your favorite
pizza toppings
1 (1 lb) bag noodles (bowtie, macaroni,
etc. your choice)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Boil noodles to al dente. Cook all meats
(except pepperoni). Grease a 9 X 13 baking
dish. Divide cooked noodles, sauce & cheeses
into thirds. Layer #1: noodles, sauce, cheese,
1 meat & veggie Layer #2 noodles, sauce, cheese
1 meat & veggie Layer #3 noodles, sauce, cheese,
1 meat & veggie. Bake 40 minutes; let rest 15
minutes to set up, then serve. Serves 8

(recipe: Mary-justapinch.com)

Cranberry-Orange Pork Roast

2 T. oil
1 flat boneless pork loin roast (4 lb)
1 (14 oz) can whole berry cranberry sauce
1/2 C. Catalina salad dressing
1 T. soy sauce
1 T. cornstarch
1 tsp. zest and 1/4 C. juice from 1 orange

Heat oil in large skillet on medium-high heat.
Add meat; cook 4-5 minutes on each side or
until browned on both sides. Transfer meat to
crockpot. Mix cranberry sauce, dressing & soy
sauce; pour over meat & cover with lid. Cook
on Low 4-5 hours. Remove meat from crockpot,
reserving liquid. Cover meat to keep warm. Whisk
remaining ingredients in small bowl until blended;
stir into liquid in crockpot. Cover & cook on High
10 minutes or until liquid is thickened. Slice meat;
place on platter. Drizzle lightly with sauce and serve
with remaining sauce. Serves 16

FOR BEST RESULTS: Do not cook meat on HIGH

(recipe: Kraft foods)
Coconut Balls

14 oz. sweetened condensed milk
1 stick butter
14 oz. coconut
2 C. chopped nuts
2 lbs powdered sugar

Ghirardelli Chocolate Candy Making Block
(or your choice) (I only melt half at a time)

Mix all ingredients except chocolate. Chill
& roll into balls. Let stand 1 hour in refrigerator
after rolling into balls. Dip each candy into
melted chocolate.

(recipe: Facebook)
Braised Paprika Chicken

3 1/2 lb. bone-in chicken thighs/
drumsticks/and, or breasts) skin
3/4 tsp. coarse salt, divided
1/2 tsp. ground pepper
2 T. cooking oil
1 T. butter
4 C. finely diced onions
pinch of sugar
1 C. diced red bell pepper
2 T. tomato paste
2 T. sweet paprika (Hungarian)
1 tsp. crushed red pepper
1 tsp. dried marjoram
1 c. chicken broth
1/2 C. sour cream
1 T. flour
2 t. finely minced fresh parsley, dill and/or

Pat chicken dry with paper towels; season with
1/2 tsp. salt & pepper. Heat oil & butter in large,
heavy casserole or Dutch oven over medium heat.
Add onions & sprinkle with sugar; cook, stirring
frequently, until onions are very soft & light brown,
10-15 minutes. Stir in bell peppers, tomato paste,
paprika & crushed red pepper. Add chicken & stir
gently into onion mixture. Sprinkle with marjoram &
add broth. Cover with tight-fitting lid & simmer over
medium-low heat until chicken is very tender, about
50 minutes. Just before chicken is done, whisk sour
cream, flour & remaining 1/4 tsp. salt into a small bowl
until smooth. When chicken is done, remove to a plate.
Stir sour cream mixture into sauce; return to simmer &
cook, stirring, until sauce coats the spoon. Reduce heat
to low, return chicken to sauce & reheat, about 1 minute.
Serve garnished with parsley, dill and/or chives, if desired.

* If you are using a combination of thighs, drumsticks and
breasts, cut each breast in half crosswise to make pieces
about the size of a thigh. And if you buy whole legs,
separate the drumsticks & thighs. When pieces are about
the same size, they’ll cook at about the same rate.

NOTE: You can prepare this ahead of time. Prepare through
to “JUST BEFORE CHICKEN IS DONE, cool to room temperature
& refrigerate up to 1 day. Finish recipe before serving.
Serves 6

(recipe: diabetic connect/Facebook)

Cheesecake-Stuffed Strawberries

1 lb. large strawberries
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
3-4 T. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
graham cracker crumbs

Rinse strawberries & cut around tops;
remove tops & scrape out part of
insides (some may already be hollow
inside) – to hold filling. In a mixing bowl,
beat cream cheese, powdered sugar & vanilla
until creamy. Add mixture to a piping bag or
ziplock back with corner snipped off. Fill
strawberry insides with cheesecake
mixture. Once they are filled, dip top
of berry in graham cracker crumbs.
NOTE: If not serving immediately, refrigerate
until serving.

(recipe: Peg – Marys Recipe Exchange)
3-Ingredient Lemon Crumble Bars

1 box yellow cake mix
1 (1/2 C.) stick unsalted butter,
1 can lemon pie filling

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13 pan with nonstick spray.
In a bowl, combine softened butter with
dry cake mix; mix until crumbly. Measure
out 1/2 C. of mixture; set aside. Using rest
of mixture; press into bottom of prepared
pan. Spread it out evenly and pack down
with your hands. Spoon lemon pie filling
onto crust; spread out evenly. Sprinkle
reserved crumb mixture over top. Bake
20-25 minutes; top will start to turn very
light golden brown. Cover & store in

(recipe: the countrycook.net)

Turkey Meatball/Spinach Tortellini Soup

10 oz. ground turkey
2 T. seasoned breadcrumbs
2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
2 T. chopped parsley
1 large egg
1 clove garlic, minced
1/8 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 T. unsalted butter
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled & chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 (14.5 oz, ea) cans chicken broth
1 small Parmigiano-Reggiano rind (optional)
9 oz. refrigerated spinach cheese tortellini
fresh ground black pepper, to taste
3 C. loosely packed baby spinach
fresh grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, for

Combine ground turkey, breadcrumbs, egg,
parsley, garlic, salt & Parmesan in bowl.
Using your hands, gently mix all ingredients
well until everything is combined. Form into
small meatballs, about 1 T. each – it will make
about 20-22 meatballs. In large nonstick pot or
Dutch oven, melt butter over medium-high heat.
Add celery, onion, carrot & garlic; cover & reduce
heat to low; cook 8-10 minutes until vegetables
begin to soften. Add chicken broth & parmesan
rind; increase heat to medium-high & bring to
boil. Season with black pepper, to taste. Reduce
heat to medium & gently drop in meatballs; cook
about 4 minutes. Add tortellini; simmer until cooked
accordg to pkg. directions, about 7 minutes. Once
cooked, remove Parm. rind (if using) & add baby
spinach. Stir to combine & serve topped with
freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano. Serves 6

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)


Breakfast Biscuit Bake

10 eggs
1/2 C. milk
1 (16 oz) tube refrigerated breakfast
biscuits (Pillsbury flaky)
4 green onions, chopped
1 C. shredded extra sharp Cheddar cheese
4-6 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled
(and/or cooked sausage, crumbled)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mix eggs & milk in large bowl. Cut each
biscuit into fours (use kitchen shears); add
to bowl.* Add all other ingredients to bowl;
mix well; pour into greased 9 X 13 pan.
Bake 30 minutes.
*poster adds biscuits to bowl while cooking
meats, to let biscuits absorb more egg/milk.

NOTE: Can be made the night before; leave
mixture in bowl, refrigerated & covered with
plastic wrap. Morning of serving; stir well,
then pour into prepared pan & bake.

(recipe: Facebook)


Well, that’s my tales for today – crazy,
happy and everything in between. Our
son is still improving – today he started
on milkshakes! It is all in the Lord’s hands
and He’s healing him day-by-day.

Hope you have a wonderful day!



PS: Always remember to keep in mind
that there might be more than one
entrance to a store! Hehehehe!


Time is FLYING By!!!


With 1-hour each way trips to the hospital to visit middle son and all the other ‘regular’ holiday stuff – I feel like I’m on a marathon run! Visited son yesterday – he’s improving greatly each day, much to the amazement of the doctors & nurses (of course, you know – I owe it all to the Lord!). He’s got Jell-O now and clear soups; it’s funny – it takes THREE doctors to agree on an upgrade in his foods/intakes – IF they agree, next it’s milkshakes & Ensure – but we’ll wait & see.

Last night was my special needs group’s Christmas Gathering; there were not as many people attending as the lady doing the organizing expected (200) – I’d say maybe 90? (let’s just say there was food leftover!). It was a great night, I got to see some people who rarely come, some caregivers, too – a great night. After the hospital visit, about 45 minutes to ‘rest’ in between, and then the party, I was pretty exhausted when I got home.

Today was go get middle son’s belongings at his apartment and bring them home (until he’s well and can move in with his older brother). What I thought would be a quick thing took about 2 + hours, as the room was a total mess (he’s 25 and not a ‘neat freak’, for sure!). All his ‘stuff’ (except his big TV) are packed in my van for now; his older brother & a friend are going to pick up the tv later tonight (it’s a 2 person job plus it’s up a flight of stairs). I have FOUR 39 gallon garbage bags of his clothes – am going to run them all through the washer, a little at a time, since I’m not exactly sure what’s clean and not.

Today I also tagged “Turkey Day” as I had a 21 lb. turkey in the freezer that was about to expire (and, no we didn’t want turkey for Christmas), so it’s now happily roasting in my oven. I can always cut it up & freeze most of it, or give some to oldest son. Turkey is such a great sandwich food!

Speaking of food – I have lots of recipes for you; am trying to sort through some of the holiday ones, but (I’m sure you understand) I’m behind. (Last night I felt really goofy when I realized that I totally forgot our 4 teen helpers – I usually buy them something little, so I promised them that when we re-convene, I’ll accommodate them with gifts. Just a little overwhelmed at the moment.)


Spicy Sausage Dip

1 lb. Italian sausage
8 oz. sour cream
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 (10 oz, ea) cans Ro*Tel original
diced tomatoes & green chiles

Tortilla chips

In a skillet cook sausage until browned
& cooked through; drain. Combine
sausage, sour cream, cream cheese &
Ro*tel in crockpot. Cook on Low
3-4 hours, stirring several times during
cooking process. Serve with chips.

(recipe: julieseatsandtreats.com)

Crunchy Fudge

1/4 C. butter
1 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/4 C. light corn syrup
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 C. powdered sugar
2 C. Rice Krispies cereal

In saucepan combine butter, choc.
chips, corn syrup & vanilla; cook over
very low heat, stirring occasionally
until smooth. Remove from heat.
Mix in powdered sugar; add in Rice
Krispies; stir & press into greased
square pan. Refrigerate until set then
cut into squares. Serves 12

(recipe: 365daysofcrockpot.com)

3-Cheese Corn Casserole

2 eggs, beaten
1 (15 oz) can cream-style corn
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen whole kernel
1 (8 1/2 oz) box corn muffin mix
1/2 C. sour cream
1/8 tsp. cayenne
1 (8 oz) pkg. (Kraft) Three Cheese
with a touch of Philadelphia, shredded
cheese, divided
4 green onions, sliced
4 slices cooked bacon, crumbled

Heat oven 375 degrees F.
Combine first 6 ingredients in medium
bowl; stir in 1/2 C. cheese then pour into
a 2  qt. casserole dish sprayed with nonstick
spray. Bake 40 minutes. Combine remaining
cheese, onions & bacon. Top casserole
with cheese mixture; bake 15 minutes until
lightly browned. Serves 12, 1/2 C. each.

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Baked Cranberry Jalapeno Dip

10 (3/4 oz) slices American cheese,
chopped into 1/4 inch pieces
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 T. jarred jalapeno peppers, finely
2 C. frozen cranberries
2 T. sugar

Baguette slices, toasted, for serving

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine cheese, cream cheese &
jalapenos in a bowl; mix well. Place
cranberries & sugar in another bowl;
toss to coat. Gently stir cranberries
into cheese mixture. Spread mixture
into 1 qt. casserole dish. Bake 30-35
minutes or until bubbly around edges.
Serve with baguette slices, if desired.
Makes 40 servings

(recipe: landolakes.com)

Caramel Apple Dump Cake

2 cans apple pie filling
1/4 C. caramel sauce
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 box yellow cake mix
1 C. melted butter
1/2 C. chopped pecans (optional)
1 C. heavy whipping cream
4 T. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13 pan with nonstick
spray. Add pie filling, caramel sauce,
lemon juice & cinnamon to pan; stir
then sprinkle top with dry cake mix.
Cover that with melted butter.
Bake 35-40 minutes and cool on a
wire rack.
Spiced Whipped Cream:
Chill a large mixing bowl. Add heavy
cream & whisk until it holds soft peaks.
Whisk in powdered sugar, vanilla &
cinnamon. Serve dump cake with
spiced whipped cream, a drizzle of
extra caramel sauce & a few pecans

(recipe: allfood.recipes)
Crockpot Apple/Bacon
Pork Roast

3-4 lb. pork roast
2 large apples, sliced
6 slices bacon, half cooked
1/3 C. brown sugar

1/2 C. brown sugar
1/4 C. apple juice
1 T. Dijon mustard or
grainy mustard
dash cinnamon

Slice pork loin into 1″
slices, about 3/4 of the way
through (roast will still be
connected at bottom). Place
roast in crockpot; place apple
slices in the slits. Lay bacon
slices over top of roast &
sprinkle with brown sugar.
Cover & cook 3-4 hours on
High or 6-8 hours on Low.
Slice & serve with glaze.
Serves 6-8

Blend all glaze ingredients in a
saucepan over medium heat.
Cook, stirring until mixture
comes to a boil. Remove from
heat & set aside.


Banana Pudding Squares

35 vanilla wafers, finely crushed
(about 1 1/4 C.)
1/4 C. margarine, melted
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. powdered sugar
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed,
3 bananas, sliced
2 (1 oz, ea) pkgs. vanilla instant
pudding mix
3 C. cold milk
1/2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate,

Line a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
aluminum foil, with ends of foil
extending over sides of dish. Use
foil ‘handles’ to remove chilled
dessert from dish before cutting
to serve.

Mix wafer crumbs & margarine; press
into bottom of 9 X 13″ pan. Refrigerate
until ready to use. Beat cream cheese &
sugar in medium bowl with whisk until
blended. Stir in 1 1/2 C. Cool Whip;
spread over crust & top with sliced
bananas. Beat pudding mixes & milk
with whisk 2 minutes; spread over bananas &
top with remaining Cool Whip & chocolate.
Refrigerate 3 hours before serving.
Serves 24

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Charleston Cheese Dip

1/2 C. mayonnaise
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/4 tsp. Cajun seasoning*
1 green onion, sliced
2 T. chopped pickles jalapeno
1 C. shredded sharp Cheddar
1 C. shredded Monterey Jack or
Swiss cheese
1 T. butter, melted
1/2 C. Panko bread crumbs
1/4 C. cooked, crumbled bacon

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In medium bowl, combine
mayonnaise, cream cheese &
Cajun seasoning until well
blended. Reserve a pinch of
green onion for garnish. Add
jalapeno, remaining green onion,
& cheeses; blend together. Transfer
mixture to a buttered glass pie
plate or small oblong shallow
baking dish. Toss Panko crumbs into
melted butter with a fork & sprinkle
over top of dip. Bake 20 minutes or
until heated through & top is golden
brown. Remove & sprinkle crumbled
bacon on top; garnish with reserved
green onion. Serve immediately with
crackers, chips or vegetables.
Serves 4-6

*Cajun seasoning: like “Slap Ya Mama”

(recipe: deepsouthdish.com)

Grandma’s Wilted Lettuce Salad
Serves 10-12

12 C. (8 oz) romaine lettuce
11 slices hickory smoked bacon,
2 1/2 T. diced onion

1/2 C. heavy whipping cream,
plus 2 T.
1/4 C. sugar plus 1 T.
1/4 C. apple cider vinegar plus
1 T.

Place salad ingredients into very
large bowl*. In another bowl add
dressing ingredients; stir to blend
well. Pour dressing, a little at a
time, over salad & stir gently to
combine. Mix dressing completely
into salad, and serve immediately.

*Poster uses a 13 C. Tupperware

(recipe: deepsouthdish.com)

No-Bake Peanut Butter
Cheerio Bars

1 C. white sugar
1 1/4 C. light corn syrup
1 C. peanut butter
2 tsp. vanilla
1 C. peanuts
6 C. peanut butter Cheerios

In medium saucepan mix white sugar &
light corn syrup; bring to boil. Add
peanut butter & vanilla; mix until
smooth. Place peanut butter Cheerios &
peanuts in large mixing bowl. Pour peanut
butter mixture over Cheerios & peanuts;
stir until combined. Spread Cheerio mixture
in 9 X 13 greased pan. Let cool then cut
into bars.

(recipe: julieseatsandtreats.com)

Crockpot Barbecued Ham
QUICK recipe!

2 1/2 lb. shaved ham*
1 (12 oz) bottle chili sauce
1/2 C. barbecue sauce
1/2 C. brown sugar
2 tsp. dry mustard
16 hamburger buns

Combine chili sauce, barbecue
sauce, brown sugar & dry mustard
in medium sized crockpot; mix well.
Add ham & gently stir until combined.
Heat until bubbly, then reduce heat
to ‘warm’ until ready to serve. Serve
on hamburger buns.

*Poster notes: she usually buys a
small whole ham and asks the butcher
to shave it for her in the deli – it’s
cheaper that way

(recipe: southyourmouth.com)
I’m hoping you’re all up to date
on what you’re planning/baking/
organizing, etc. I’m really ‘hoping’
to be able to finish my shopping
tomorrow, but there’s also another
possible ‘planned’ thing I might have
to attend, first. Still have to bake the
three Christmas breads for my
neighbors; hoping to get that done
tomorrow, also.

Hang in there – even if it’s NOT ALL
DONE – Christmas will come, anyway –
and THAT’S ALL RIGHT! Cherish
those you love, let them know that –
life is all about those moments.



I’ve also been able to do a lot of knitting
baby hats in the trips back & forth to the
hospital; at least I’m getting ‘up to date’
on something! Our weather has been

holding nicely – in the 30’s but no
snow on the ground! YAY! Makes
for much easier walking/driving,
especially on expressways.

Saturday Update


Here it is Saturday – it’s been a very stressful, hectic week but I’m here to PRAISE THE LORD, our son is steadily improving. He will have a very long road ahead, but the Lord is SO good – we are able to see small improvements daily. We (husband, youngest son & I) went to the hospital today to visit him; the town this hospital is located in is a COLLEGE town. During the week the streets are teaming with tons of pedestrians, bicycles, cars, etc. and if you’re not exactly sure where you’re going you can end up facing lots of One Way streets, to boot! We were VERY pleasantly surprised to find the the weekends are virtually EMPTY of people/cars/bicycles including the hospital! I was amazed! One person we met while doing the long walk to the parking structure said she thought it was because there are so many ‘out patients’ during the week – I don’t know why, but that place is PACKED with people – outside the hospital, in the town, etc. SO GLAD to have a nice, pleasant drive through town and walk inside the hospital. The great news is our son was moved from Critical Care to General Care yesterday – that’s a HUGE step forward! He’s going to be in there for quite a while, but we’re taking it a day-at-a-time. Husband asked to take the day off driving yesterday (it’s an hour drive one-way & add all the stress of going through town/dealing with all the people/walking, etc.) I didn’t blame him. After today he said he’s thinking of us going every-other day to visit; we’ll see. Husband and oldest son went Thursday while I watched our grandson. Poor little guy – he ended up with stomach flu (which his Mom had but we didn’t know about), so he stayed home Friday from school. I was very glad that, although I took care of him, I didn’t directly TOUCH his sweaty face or kiss him on the face – I’ve had my flu shot but certainly don’t want to carry that to son in hospital!

Yesterday, with our ‘off driving’ day I got the small fiber optic Christmas tree down and put it up in the dining room and added a few little decorations (nothing like usual, but it’s OK). When I told my grandson (in the car on the way home from his school bus stop) that I would probably only be putting up the small tree, he said: “But how will Santa know where to put the presents?” (little tree is on a small table – our other tree is usually on top of our baby grand piano). He’s 8 1/2 and very smart – I tend to forget that he’s still a little kid in his heart!

I’m thinking Monday or Tuesday I’ll bake the three loaves of bread for our neighbors (I do this every year). I told my husband that this year I’m not doing the big batches of cookies I usually bake – I’m probably going to Meijers (a large grocery/merchandise store in Michigan) and buy their bakery cookies already made up – this is NOT the year to dive into lots of baking. I ‘did’ get the stockings down and hung them on the fireplace (didn’t want the question from Grandson about why they weren’t up!). When I think back on how things have worked out, I’m very glad I spent time a month ago knitting up all those coffee mug warmers – this coming Wednesday is my special needs group’s Christmas party and those gifts are for all the helpers. Wednesday of this week I wasn’t sure if I had the gumption to go to my group’s weekly meeting, but finally went anyway. I’m glad I did – you can’t be ‘down’ around them, they always are so chipper!  It’s been a rough week, but the Lord (and lots of prayers) have carried us through so far.


Chocolate Peanut Clusters

2 (16 oz) cans cocktail peanuts
2 (6 oz) bars white baking chocolate,
4 oz. bar sweet German Baking
chocolate, chopped
2 C. dark chocolate chips
1 C. white chocolate chips

Spray inside of crockpot with nonstick
spray. Place all ingredients inside; mix.
Cover & cook on Low 3 hours. Turn off
crockpot; let stand 20 minutes. Stir
mixture until chocolate is smooth. Drop
by spoonfuls onto waxed paper. Melt
white chocolate chips in microwave;
drizzle over clusters. Let clusters
cool. Store in airtight container.
Makes 24 clusters

(recipe: julieseatsandtreats.com)

White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies

1 C. unsalted butter
1 C. brown sugar
1 C. granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 T. vanilla
3 C. flour
1 T. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 C. dried cranberries
1 1/2 C. white chocolate chips
1 C. chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven 325 Degrees F.
Lightly grease or line baking sheets with
parchment paper. In large bowl cream
butter & sugars until smooth. Add eggs &
vanilla; blend well. Slowly add flour, baking
soda & salt to creamed mixture, mixing to
combine. Stir in cranberries, chocolate chips &
nuts (if desired). Drop balls of dough onto
prepared baking sheets, about 2 inches apart.
Bake cookies until golden brown around edges
& set on top, about 12 minutes for small
cookies. Remove to rack to cool. Makes about
3 dozen.

(recipe: Marys Recipe Exchange)


Cheesy Spinach/Bacon Dip

1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen chopped spinach,
1 (16 oz) pkg. Velveeta, cut into 1/2″
4 oz. cream cheese, cubed
1 (10 oz) can Ro*Tel diced tomatoes &
green chiles, undrained
8 slices cooked bacon, crumbled

Microwave  all ingredients in a micro-
waveable bowl on High 5 minutes or
until Velveeta is completely melted &
mixture is well blended, stirring after
3 minutes. Makes 32 servings/ 2 T. each

Serve with tortilla chips or cut up fresh

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Simple Tortilla Pizzas
(comment from poster:

Do not need a recipe for these pizzas, but

here are the ingredients:

Flour tortillas (or pita bread)
cheeses: shredded mozzarella,
shredded Cheddar, goat, feta, etc
pizza sauce
tomato slices
sliced onions
olive oil
chopped parsley
any meats you might like

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Spread pizza sauce evenly across
tortilla, leaving 1/2 inch space
around edges; sprinkle with
cheeses & toppings. Bake
12-14 minutes until cheese is
golden & bubbling & edges of
tortilla are lightly browned. Slice &

(recipe: allfood.recipes)

Crockpot Chicken Curry

10 chicken thighs, (2 3/4 lb) skins
1 (16 oz) jar thick & chunky salsa
1 onion, chopped
2 T. curry powder
1 C. sour cream

Place chicken in crockpot. Combine
next 3 ingredients; pour over chicken.
Cover with lid, cook on Low 8-10 hours
or High 5 hours. Transfer chicken to platter,
reserving sauce in crockpot. Add sour cream
to sauce; mix well. Serve spooned over chicken.
Serves 10
(good served over cooked rice)

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

(from Sprinkles Cupcakes)

1 C. butter, softened
3 1/2 C. confectioners sugar
1 tsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/8 tsp. salt

In large bowl, combine butter, sugar & salt;
beat until well blended. Add milk & vanilla;
beat an additional 3-5 minutes or until smooth
& creamy. Makes enough to frost 12 cupcakes.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Cinnamon/Spiced Apple Bread

2 C. flour
2 C. apples (small-medium dice) –
Granny Smiths, approx 2 apples
3 eggs, room temp.
3/4 C. vegetable oil
3/4 C. granulated sugar
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla

1/4 C. packed brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Butter a 9″ X 5″ loaf pan. Mix
flour, cinnamon, allspice, baking
powder/baking soda & salt in
a large bowl. In small bowl mix
eggs, oil, sugars & vanilla; mix well.
Add egg mixture to dry ingredients &
incorporate well. Don’t overmix. Fold
in apples so they’re completly covered
& mixed in; pour batter into prepared
pan. Bake 45-55 minutes until golden
brown and a toothpick inserted into
the center comes out clean. Remove
to cooling rack; let cool. Run a knife
around the edge of the pan to loosen
the loaf; transfer to serving plate.
Makes 1 loaf.

(recipe: 12tomatoes.com)

Friendship Casserole
(also known as Tater Tot Casserole)

1 lb. ground chuck
1/2 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (8 oz) can crescent rolls
1 (10.5 oz) can cream of celery or mushroom
1 (16 oz) pkg. frozen tater tots
1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 C. Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
salt & pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray baking dish with nonstick spray.Arrange
crescent rolls to completely cover bottom of
pan, pressing seams to seal. Brown onion & garlic
until just tender; add in ground beef, season with
salt & pepper. Cook until beef is no longer pink;
drain grease. Stir in soup; mix well. Spread mixture
into 9 X 13 dish. Top with tater tots & bake, uncovered,
30-40 minutes until bubbly & tots are golden brown.
Remove from oven & top with cheese. Return to oven
& bake until cheese has melted.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)
Calico Ham & Bean Soup

1/2 C. dry navy or Great Northern beans
1/2 C. dry black or kidney beans
1/2 C. dry lima beans
1/2 C. dry garbonzo beans
1/2 C. dry split peas
6 C. water

2 C. fully cooked ham, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 C. chopped onion
1 C. chopped carrot
1 tsp. dried basil, crushed
1 tsp. dried oregano, crushed
3/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 bay leaves
6 C. water
salt & pepper, to taste

Rinse beans; drain. In large saucepan, combine
beans, peas & 6 C. water; bring to boil, reduce
heat and simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes. Drain
& rinse beans. In 3 1/2-4/5 Qt. crockpot combine
ham, onion, carrot, basil, oregano, 3/4 tsp. salt,
1/4 tsp. pepper & bay leaves. Stir in drained beans &
remaining 6 C. fresh water. Cover & cook on Low
8-10 hours or High 4-5 hours. Discard bay leaves;
season to taste with additional salt & pepper.
Serves 8

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)
Pecan Pie Bars

1 can crescent rolls
1/2 C. chopped pecans
1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. corn syrup
2 T. butter or marg, melted
1 tsp. vanilla
1 egg, beaten

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Unroll dough, press in bottom &
1/2 inch up sides of a 9 X 13″
pan; firmly pressing perforations
to seal. Bake 8 minutes.
In medium bowl, mix remaining
ingredients; pour over partially
baked crust. Bake 18-22 minutes
more or until golden brown.
Cool 1 hour; cut into bars.

(recipe: Facebook)

Amazing Puff Balls

1 (8 oz) pkg. sliced pepperoni
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese,
2 (10 1/8 oz, ea) pkgs.
refrigerated crescent dinner rolls

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Remove rolls & separate into
individual triangles. Flatten each
triangle & slice so that it becomes
3 small triangles. Dice or chop
pepperoni into tiny pieces & mix
into cream cheese so that all
pieces of pepperoni are incorporated
into cream cheese. Spoon a small
amount of mixture in middle of each
triangle & pinch up all sides around
filling. Place on baking sheet & repeat
with rest of ingredients. Bake at
amount of time stated on crescent
rolls (usually 11 minutes). Let cool
before serving. Makes 48

(recipe: food.com)
Thank you for your prayers and concern; like
I’ve mentioned before, this will be a long
healing but we are trusting in the Lord and
HIS leading/healing/guiding for our family.



PS: We’re also thanking the Lord for the good
driving weather we’ve been experiencing this
past week – it’s been in the 30’s and chilly/cold
but not ice or snow to battle on the roads/

Look who came to visit!!!




Pretty exciting! I was thinking about why we would have deer (remember the female of a few days ago?) in our yard; (a) there IS a park across the street – just trees & a lake (b) we DON’T rake/mow our leaves (more natural setting – camouflage for them?) (c) we don’t have any animals like dogs/cats which would leave a scent – guess we’re now becoming a wild life sanctuary – NEAT! This deer is about 30 feet from our house – remember we live ON a VERY busy 5-lane highway (45 MPH speed) so I’m still in awe of having these creatures so close! (AND this time I was able to get good, clear photos!)

Just spent about 30 minutes on the phone registering for next years Medicaid program. This will be the first time I am NOT covered under my husband’s insurance (I’m 4 years older than him; he’s not yet Medicaid eligible), so that made choosing a plan for me all the more confusing. Thankfully, I had a very nice, patient lady who ran me through the plan that works best for me – I’m happy with what I chose (for now, anyway). I’ll tell ya – life just gets more complicated/confusing the older you get!


Gingerbread Oatmeal

1 C. steel cut oats
2 C. apple juice
2 C. water
1/2 C. brown sugar
1 T. molasses
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. ginger
1 tsp. vanilla

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick spray. Mix together
all ingredients in a bowl; pour
into crockpot. Cook, on Low
4-5 hours. Serve with milk.
Serves 6

(recipe: eatathomecooks.com)

Crockpot Pantry Chicken Stew

1 1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken
thighs, cut into 1″ pieces
1/4 C. flour
1 (8 oz) pkg. sliced fresh mushrooms
2 C. baby carrots
1 small onion, chopped
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
1 C. frozen peas, thawed/drained
1/2 C. (Kraft) Chive & onion cream
cheese spread

Toss chicken pieces in flour; place
in crockpot. Add all remaining
ingredients (except peas & cream
cheese); cover & cook on Low
6-8 hours (or High 3-4 hours). Stir
in cream cheese & peas; cook, covered,
30 minutes more. Serves 6 (1 C. each)

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Vegetable Casserole

1 T. olive oil
1 medium yellow onion,
diced fine
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium zucchini, sliced
into thin rounds
1 medium yellow squash sliced
into thin rounds
1 medium Yukon Gold potato,
rinsed & sliced into thin rounds
1 medium tomato, sliced into
thin rounds
1 tsp. fresh thyme, minced
1 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
salt & pepper, to taste
1 C. shredded Italian cheese

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Saute onion in skillet over medium
heat with olive oil until softened,
about 5 minutes. Add garlic & cook
until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Spray insides of a 8″ X 8″ square
dish with nonstick spray. Spread
onion & garlic mixture over bottom;
place thinly sliced vegetables vertically
in an alternating patter. Sprinkle
with salt & pepper, thyme &
rosemary. Cover with foil & bake
30 minutes. Remove foil; top with
cheese & bake another 15-20 minutes
until cheese is golden brown.

(recipe: 12tomatoes.com)

Fudgy Chocolate Quick Bread

1 1/2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 (4 oz) pkg. unsweetened chocolate
1/2 C. butter or margarine
1 C. granulated sugar
1 C. packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 C. sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C. finely chopped walnuts

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine flour, baking powder & soda.
Microwave chocolate & butter in large
microwaveable bowl on High 2 minutes
or until butter is melted; stir until
chocolate is completely melted &
mixture is well blended. Add sugars;
mix well. Blend in eggs, sour cream &
vanilla; add flour mixture & mix well.
Stir in nuts & spread mixture into
9 X 5 loaf pan sprayed with nonstick
spray. Bake 1 hour to 1 hour 10
minutes or until a toothpick inserted
into center comes out clean. Cool
in pan 10 minutes; remove from pan
to wire rack; cool completely.

(recipe: Kraft foods)

2 Ingredient Pumpkin Cake
w/Apple Cider Glaze

1 box yellow cake mix
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree

1 1/2 C. powdered sugar
3 T. apple cider
3/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place dry cake mix & pumpkin
puree in large bowl; using elec.
mixer, beat until well incorporated.
(batter will be very thick). Pour
into a greased 7″ X 11″ x 2″ pan.
(this is a small rectangular pan)
Bake 28 minutes until a toothpick
inserted into center comes out
clean. Do not overbake. Let cool
5-10 minutes in pan, then flip out
onto a platter.
Combine glaze ingredients in a bowl;
it will be thick but pourable. Add more
sugar or cider if needed. Pour over cake
while still warm. Reserve some to pour
over each slice when serving. Serve
warm or at room temperature.

(recipe: noblepig.com)

Crockpot Pork Roast w/Veggies

1 (3 lb) pork roast
3 T. olive oil
salt & pepper
5 Russet potatoes, chopped*
1 large onion, chopped
3 C. mini carrots
1 T. garlic, chopped
1/4 C. soy sauce
1/4 C. balsamic salad dressing
1/2 C. water
1/2 C. brown sugar

juices from roast
2 (.87 oz) pkts. dry pork gravy mix
1/4 C. water
1/4 C. milk
1 (10 oz) can cream of mushroom soup

Heat large skillet over medium-high heat.
Pour 3 T. olive oil in skillet; sprinkle roast
generously with salt & pepper on top &
bottom. Carefully place in hot pan; allow it
to get a golden brown sear on both sides.
Spray insides of a 3-4 qt crockpot with non-
stick cooking spray. Place seared roast in pot
& add carrots around roast. Top with chopped
potatoes & onion. Mix soy sauce, balsamic
salad dressing, 1/2 C. water & brown sugar in
a bowl; whisk ingredients together making sure
brown sugar gets dissolved; pour over top of
potatoes in crockpot. Add a dash of salt & pepper;
cover & cook on High 4-5 hours. When roast is
cooked through (temp 160 degrees F.), carefully
pour juices from crockpot into medium-sized
pan. Turn off crockpot & let meat rest inside,
with lid on 5-10 minutes before serving.


Add 2 pkts. pork gravy mix, 1/4 C. milk, 1/4 C.
water & undiluted mushroom soup to saucepan
with roast juices. Heat mixture to boiling over
medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Serve
roast & veggies with gravy. Serves 6-7.

*Make sure cut potatoes are uniform in size,
so they cook evenly.

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)

Mini Corn Dog Muffins

1 (8.5 oz) pkg. corn muffin mix
2 oz Velveeta, cut into 24 small cubes
4 hot dogs, cut into 6 pieces
1/2 C. honey mustard

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Prepare muffin batter as per pkg; spoon
into 24 mini muffin cups sprayed with
nonstick spray. Press 1 Velveeta cube &
1 hot dog sliced into center of each
muffin cup. Bake 10-12 minutes until
golden brown. Cool 5 minutes before
removing from pans. Serve warm with
mustard. Makes 24

(recipe: Kraft foods)

Roasted Tomato Soup

2 lb. plum tomatoes
6 garlic cloves, peeled & whole
1/4 medium red onion, chopped
1 T. olive oil
1 T. balsamic vinegar
2 sprigs oregano, remove leaves
from stem
3-4 basil leaves
salt & pepper
2 C. vegetable broth or 2 C. chicken
broth or 2 C. water
1/4 C. Parmesan cheese, shaved or
grated (optional)

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Wash & cut tomatoes, placing in a
shallow baking dish, cut sides down.
Add onion pieces, garlic, oregano &
basil to pan. Drizzle vegetables with
oil & bals. vinegar; season with salt
& pepper. Bake 45 minutes. Place
roasted vegetables in food processor
or blender & puree. Slowly add broth/
water until soup has desired consistency.
Continue blending until smooth. Serve
garnished with cheese, if desired.
Serves 6-8

(recipe: food.com)

Our weather is really nice: sunny,
slight breeze, temps: 45 (up to 55
later!). Tomorrow they’re calling for
rain (oh, great) but that’s typical of this
time of year, right?

Enjoy your day – hope you have an
‘unexpected’ blessing today!



Thursday Thinking –

lady in recliner

Today, I’ve decided, is my “Takin’ it EASY, day!” Originally I thought we wouldn’t be getting the grandson tomorrow, so thought FRIDAY would be ‘my’ day – that’s changed. Don’t get me wrong – LOVE my grandson, but he’s just like his Dad was when he was 8 – VERY smart and EASILY bored!

Today’s tasks entail loading & running the dishwasher (oh, goody) – that’s about it! Got up today and decided to ‘get cracking’ on knitting the remaining 10 baby hats & get them delivered. No rush, really – it’s just that I’d like that done so I can sort of ‘take a break’ from them for awhile. I figure 50 Newborn & 50 Premie hats should keep both ‘baby’ departments at the hospital ‘stocked’ for awhile – yes? I almost forgot! Tuesday Knit/Crochet night brought two new people – one I used to work with over 40 years ago at Michigan Bell Telephone Co.; the other works at the hospital where I deliver the baby hats! While we were sitting there, she asked me what I was knitting, so I told her. She then said: “YOU’RE the one who knits those little hats?” It seems she’s seen them – they have them in a basket at the reception department in both baby departments (two different locations: one is regular/newborns, the other is the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) for the premies. She gave me some good input into them and said that they (the nurses) really liked a particular hat – that gives me more incentive to knit more like that one. It’s knit using Bernat Baby Jacquards yard – if you’re read this blog before, it’s the yarn that is self-striping/self-designing. This particular color makes little pink hats with a strip about 1 inch wide in white with little darker pink flowers & dark green leaves! (Makes me look like some sort of SUPER KNITTER!) The yarn does it all! They also have that yarn in oranges, blues and lilac, but those others don’t make the little flowers – they just make pretty stripes!


The yarn/hat I’m talking about is front row – third from left – see the flowers?


Raspberry Pie Squares

3 3/4 C. flour
4 tsp. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 C. _cold_ butter


2 C. sugar
2/3 C. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
8 C fresh or frozen unsweetened
1 T. lemon juice
5 tsp. heavy whipping cream
1 T. coarse sugar (for topping)

In large bowl combine flour, sugar
& salt; cut in butter until crumbly.
Gradually add water, tossing with
a fork until dough forms a ball. Divide
dough in half so that one portion is
slightly larger than the other; wrap
each in plastic wrap & refrigerate
1 1/4 hours or until easily handled.

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Roll out larger portion of dough between
two large sheets of waxed paper into a
17″ X 12″ rectangle; transfer to a ungreased
15″ X 10″ baking pan. Press pastry onto
bottom & up sides of pan; trim pastry even
with edges.

In large bowl combine sugar, flour & salt;
add raspberries & lemon juice, toss to coat
then spoon over pastry. Roll out remaining
pastry; place over filling; trim & seal edges
& cut slits in top. Brush top with cream &
sprinkle with coarse sugar. Place pan on a
baking sheet & bake 40-45 minutes or until
golden brown. Cool completely on a wire
rack then cut into squares. Makes 24

*If using frozen raspberries, use without
thawing to avoid discoloring the batter.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com

Country-Fried Pork Chops

8 bone-in pork chops (about 3/4″ thick)
2 eggs, beaten
few shakes hot sauce
1 C. flour
1 tsp. paprika
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 C. vegetable oil


3 T. flour
2 1/2 C. milk
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper

Set oven to ‘warm’ setting; place
a cooling rack over a baking sheet &
place in oven.

Mix eggs & hot sauce in shallow dish.
Combine flour, paprika, 1 tsp. salt &
1/2 tsp. pepper in large ziplock bag –
shake to combine. Season both sides
of chops with remaining salt & pepper;
dip each chop into egg mixture, letting
excess drip back into dish. Place chop
in flour mixture, shake to coat well.
Remove & set on plate; repeat with
other chops. Heat oil in large, heavy-
bottomed skillet over medium-high
heat. Place 4 chops (or however many
will fit comfortably) in hot skillet, frying
until well browned on each side, about
5 minutes. Remove from skillet & place
on warmed baking sheet (in warmed oven)
Repeat with remaining chops.


Add flour to pan drippings in skillet; whisk
to combine & let cook about 2 minutes.
Slowly pour in milk & whisk constantly
until mixture has thickened – about 3 minutes.
Add salt & pepper; season to taste. Remove
chops from oven. Serve gravy on top of
chops. Pour remaining gravy into a serving
bowl & serve on side with chops.

(recipe: tideandthyme.com)

Maple Breakfast Sandwiches

2 1/3 C. Bisquick mix
1/2 C. milk
3 T. maple-flavored syrup
3 T. melted butter
1 pkg. frozen sausage patties
3 slices American cheese,
cut diagonally in half

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Mix Bisquick, milk, syrup &
butter to form a soft, sticky dough.
Roll 1/2 inch thick on floured surface.
Cut biscuits using a cup or circle cutter.
Cook biscuits on ungreased cookie
sheet 10-12 minutes. While biscuits
are baking, cook sausage patties as
per directions on pkg. Cut warm
biscuits open & place 1 sausage
pattie/1 slice cheese & top with
other half of biscuit. Serve with
more syrup, if desired.

(recipe: Dorie-Marys Recipe Exchange)

BLT Salad with Vinaigrette

8 slices bacon
4 slices country Italian bread,
1 1/2 C. cherry tomatoes, halved
8 C. torn romaine lettuce
1/3 C. blue cheese crumbled
1/4 C. cider vinegar
1/4 C. olive oil
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. Dijon-style mustard
salt & ground black pepper

In large skillet cook bacon over
medium heat until crisp, turning
occasionally. Remove from skillet;
drain on paper towels. Break bacon
into 2″ pieces. Arrange on plates:
toast, romaine, tomatoes, bacon &
blue cheese.
_Using a screw-top jar, combine vinegar,
oil, sugar & mustard; shake well. Season
to taste with salt & pepper. Drizzle over
salads. Makes 4 servings

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe

Tex-Mex Chicken Tostadas

4 (8 inch) flour tortillas
1 lb. ground raw chicken
1 tsp. chili powder
1 (8 oz) bottle medium or hot salsa
1 (15 oz) can black or pinto beans;
rinsed & drained (reserve liquid)
2 T. diced pimiento
1 C. chopped lettuce
1/4 C. thinly sliced radishes
1/4 C. shredded Cheddar cheese (1 oz)
1 (2 1/4 oz) can sliced, pitted ripe olives
sour cream (optional)
2 T. thinly sliced green onion
avocado slices (optional)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place tortillas in single layer directly
onto middle oven rack. Bake 6 minutes,
turning halfway through baking time,
or until golden & crisp. (if they bubble
during baking, puncture the bubble with
a fork); set aside & cover to keep warm. In
10 inch skillet cook & stir chicken & chili
powder over medium heat 5-7 minutes or
until chicken is cooked through. Stir in salsa;
set aside – keep warm. In small pan, stir beans
over low heat until heated through. Using a
potato masher or fork, mash beans, adding
enough reserved liquid to make spreadable
consistency; heat through.
_To assemble:
_Place one warm tortilla on each dinner plate;
spread with thin layer beans; top beans with
some of the chicken mixture, pimiento, lettuce,
radishes, cheese, olives, sour cream & green
onion. Garnish with avocado, if desired.
Serves 4

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Chicken Ole

NOTE: Poster says: “You might want to double
this because it’s never enough”

12 corn tortillas, torn into pieces
2 lb. cooked chicken, coarsely chopped
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of mushroom soup
1 (7 oz) can green chili salsa
8 oz. sour cream
1 T. onion, grated
1 1/2 C. grated Cheddar cheese

Lightly grease sides & bottom of crockpot. In a
separate bowl, mix together soups, salsa, sour
cream & onion. In crockpot, arrange alternate
layers of tortillas, chicken pieces & soup mixture-
ending with soup mixture on top. Cover & cook
on Low 4-5 hours. Sprinkle top with Cheddar
cheese; cook another 20 minutes or until cheese
is melted.

(recipe: carolsrecipes77-Slowcooker Digest)

White Bean Dip

1 C. canned white navy beans,
drained & rinsed
4 cloves garlic
1/2 jalapeno pepper
2 T. lemon juice
3 t. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
2 T. fresh parsley, chopped
2 tsp. sesame seeds

In food processor or blender, puree
all ingredients except parsley & sesame
seeds. Transfer puree to a glass or plastic
bowl; add parsley & sesame seeds; blend
well. Refrigerate for at least one hour before
use. Serve at room temperature. Makes 1 C.

(recipe: Rhonda G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Cheesy Zucchini Rice

1 T. olive oil
1 C. long-grain white rice
2 c. chicken broth
2 T. butter
1 medium (or 2 small) zucchini, grated
1 C. shredded Sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
salt & pepper, to taste
dash of milk, as needed

Heal olive oil in medium saucepan
over medium heat. Add rice & stir to
coat. Toast rice, stirring often, until it
starts to turn golden. Pour in chicken
broth; bring to a boil, turn heat to Low
& cover. Cook, covered, 15-20 minutes or
until most of liquid is absorbed. Remove
from heat & add butter, grated zucchini,
Cheddar & garlic powder; mix well. Cover
& let set 5 minutes. Stir again & add salt &
pepper, to taste and a dash of milk if you’d
like to thin out the texture more.

(recipe: bunsinmyoven.com)

Strawberry Cheesecake Salad

12 oz. tub Cool Whip, thawed
1 (3.5 oz) pkg. cheesecake flavored
instant pudding mix
3 (6 oz, ea) pkgs. strawberry yogurt
1 lb. fresh strawberries, sliced
3 bananas, sliced (add just before
serving or they brown)
miniature marshmallows (add
just before serving

In large salad bowl stir Cool Whip,
yogurts & pudding mix. Place in
refrigerator at least 1 hour before
serving. Add strawberries, bananas
& marshmallows just before serving.
Keep refrigerated.

(recipe: foodietale.com)

Helen’s Favorite Hot Dish

2 to 2 1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 lb. wide egg noodles
2 (26 oz, ea) cans cream of mushroom soup
4 C. milk
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. salt
2 C. shredded cheese (your choice)
1/4 C. olive oil
1 lb. sliced, fresh mushrooms
8 hard-boiled eggs, sliced
1 onion, diced
4 stalks celery, sliced
2 C. bread crumbs
1/2 C. butter
1 tsp. salt

Slice chicken breasts in half, lengthwise;
poach in salted water 5 minutes. Place
breasts in work bowl of a stand mixer
fitted with a paddle attachment; turn on
medium-low to shred chicken to desired
consistency; set aside. In a 4 qt. saucepan
over medium heat add olive oil; add
mushrooms & onions; cook until mushrooms
have released most of their liquid, about
10 minutes; set aside. In large bowl, whisk
together soup, milk, garlic powder, pepper &
salt until mixture is combined & not very
lumpy. Add chicken, cheese, mushrooms &
egg noodles; stir together & pour into a large
roasting pan that has been sprayed with non-
stick spray. Lay sliced eggs on top, cover with
plastic wrap & refrigerate overnight.
The next day:
Remove roaster from fridge & take the chill
off an hour before you bake it.
Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Melt butter in small saucepan; add bread
crumbs & salt; sprinkle mixture over top of
dish. Bake on middle rack of oven 1 1/2 hours.
Remove from oven & allow to set 15 minutes.

(recipe: rossveback.com)

Skinny Chunky Monkey Cookies
(makes 30)

3 ripe bananas
2 C. oats
1/4 C. peanut butter
1/4 C. cocoa powder
1/3 C. unsweetened apple sauce
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mash bananas then add rest of
ingredients; stir & let set 20
minutes. Drop by teaspoonful
onto ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake 10-12 minutes.

(recipe: Facebook)


Wrapping up the ‘colonial costume’ ordering;
long skirt & apron are ordered, shoes are in
the mail, blouse arrived yesterday (love it-
just perfect), finally chose a yarn and today
ordered a snood. Yes, I attempted to crochet
a snood, myself, but am just not happy with
it. Here’s what I ordered:


(No, that’s not me in the photos)

Yarn color for the shawl is:


Ended up getting pure wool – wasn’t my
first choice, but the thickness, color AND
price were right – so I went with that. I think
it will go really well with the dark, forest
green skirt & white blouse.

Not much else new around here – got all
my ‘extra’ running done yesterday (extra
trip to library to pick up book on hold – turns
out I’d already read it – sigh!), quick stops
to bank, 2 grocery stores, drug store then
home. Last night was special needs group –
that went well until snack time. Usually we
get the snacks ready and the ‘kids’ come &
get their own. For some reason, last night
they didn’t (wouldn’t you know it – it was
one, very rare, night when we didn’t have
ANY helpers! Rushing around serving pop
& bowls of goldfish crackers to 28 ‘kids’
was a bit wearing. The funny part was:
they kept saying: “I didn’t get a drink!”
“I didn’t get WATER!” – then I’d run back
and fill their request. When I finally had
time to go around and say Hi to anyone
who came in late, I stopped at a table
of guys. One of the guys said: “More POP!”
I looked at the cup he was holding and said:
“You already HAVE pop!” He replied (in
typical fashion for our group): “But I
need MORE pop!” Love it! (We have to
stick to a kind of ‘rule’ – one pop, only
because if all 29+ kids decided they
all wanted more – we’d run out FAST!
One snack/one pop per person (Plus
some of them have ‘issues’ when they
drink too many liquids and the parents/
caregivers would NOT like it if we filled
them up for the car ride home! Gotta
love my group – they are truly unique!

Have a GREAT day/night – take a little
time to ‘smell the roses/flowers’ –



PS: Our weather is a nice, pleasant 80 degrees, a

little overcast, but pleasant- YAY!