Oct 202020
 

Teaser Tuesday Time

 

Listen to the Marriage: A Novel

Listen to the Marriage by John Jay Osborn

JoAnn reviewed this book and it sounds really good

FIRST CHAPTER:
“Is there anything practical that needs to be addressed right now?” Sandy asked.
Like a student, Gretchen raised her hand.
It had been a long time since one of the couples who came to Sandy had raised her hand before speaking.

TEASER: 
“That was a pretty lame conversation,” Sandy said.
There was more about Bonny, both of them knew it, both of them didn’t want to talk about it. Sandy decided to deal with it.

Oct 182020
 
Sunday Reflections

Reading…
The Other Side: A Short Story by Chevy Stevens (only 34 pages)
Poems To Live Your Life By (Chosen & Illustrated By)  by Chris Riddell

Listening To…
I Really Needed This Today by Hoda Kotb

Books Reviewed Last Week…
Anxious People by Fredrik Backman

Watched…
Fried Green Tomatoes (again, loved it)

In The Kitchen…
Slow Cooker Chicken & Dumplings
BLT’s
Taco Bell Chicken Power Bowl
Southern Style Baby Lima Beans

New To Me Stuff:
New kitchen appliances which I LOVE!

Today’s To Do List…
Relax and maybe take a nap

Looking forward to…
Receiving the items I bought from Pampered Chef 

A Favorite Bible Verse…
Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?
John 11:25-26

From the camera…

Image may contain: one or more people, people sleeping, baby and closeup

Jensen is sleepy! She’s 3 months old now.

Oct 172020
 

Chili Hash

1 pound medium potatoes, cubed
1/2 cup water
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1 can (15-1/2 ounces) chili starter
1 cup frozen peas
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1/4 teaspoon salt
Sour cream, optional

Place potatoes and water in a microwave-safe dish
Cover and microwave on high for 7 minutes or until tender
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain
Drain potatoes and add to the skillet
Stir in the chili starter, peas, parsley and salt.
Bring to a boil
Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes
Serve with sour cream if desired

Thoughts
I adapted this by adding a can of stewed tomatoes (I LOVE tomatoes), I used frozen cubed potatoes and frozen diced onions.

This was so good! The only thing I’ll do different next time is add a little chili powder.

This recipe is quick and easy, not expensive at all, and it tastes very good. I will definitely be adding it to my list of favorites.

Weekend Cooking

Oct 132020
 

Anxious People By cover art

Anxious People by Fredrik Backman
Narrated by: Marin Ireland
Length: 9 hrs and 53 mins
Release date: 09-08-20

Looking at real estate isn’t usually a life-or-death situation, but an apartment open house becomes just that when a failed bank robber bursts in and takes a group of strangers hostage. The captives include a recently retired couple who relentlessly hunts down fixer-uppers to avoid the painful truth that they can’t fix their own marriage. There’s a wealthy bank director who has been too busy to care about anyone else and a young couple who are about to have their first child but can’t seem to agree on anything, from where they want to live to how they met in the first place. Add to the mix an 87-year-old woman who has lived long enough not to be afraid of someone waving a gun in her face, a flustered but still-ready-to-make-a-deal real estate agent, and a mystery man who has locked himself in the apartment’s only bathroom, and you’ve got the worst group of hostages in the world.

Each of them carries a lifetime of grievances, hurts, secrets, and passions that are ready to boil over. None of them is entirely who they appear to be. And all of them – the bank robber included – desperately crave some sort of rescue. As the authorities and the media surround the premises, these reluctant allies will reveal surprising truths about themselves and set in motion a chain of events so unexpected that even they can hardly explain what happens next.

Rich with Fredrik Backman’s “pitch-perfect dialogue and an unparalleled understanding of human nature” (Shelf Awareness), Anxious People is an ingeniously constructed story about the enduring power of friendship, forgiveness, and hope – the things that save us, even in the most anxious times.

Thoughts
This is a very kooky book. and I absolutely loved it! The characters are all dealing with personal issues and that was a big part of the book and a big part of what made it so interesting.

The story is about a robber who tries to rob a cashless bank. And then it gets weirder. When he finds out he’s not getting any money, he runs out of the bank and into an apartment building where he takes a group of people, who are viewing one of the apartments during an open house, hostage.  One couple is expecting a baby, another is an older married couple who flip houses. There is also a bank executive, an elderly widow, and a man who is only wearing the head of a rabbit costume and his underwear. The police who investigate the crime and interview the hostages are father and son, who are also dealing with their own issues.

I love every Backman book I’ve read, and I think this one may be my favorite. It kept me guessing who the robber was and every time I was wrong. When I finally found out who it was, I was shocked.

This is a very good book that makes you want to keep reading and makes you keep guessing. It had a little bit of everything, it was sad at times, funny, quirky, and had very interesting characters.

If you haven’t read this yet, you should give it a try. I loved it! I’d give it a 10*

Oct 032020
 
Sunday Reflections

Reading…
Beaches, Bungalows, & Burglaries: Book 1 – A Camper and Criminals Cozy Mystery Series by Tonya Kappes

Listening To…
Confessions on the 7:45 by Lisa Unger

Books Reviewed Last Week…
None (again)

Watched…
Troop Zero, a fun movie to get your mind off 2020

This Week’s Meal Plan…
I haven’t figured that out yet

New To Me Stuff:
A friend kept telling me to try the Snackin’ Bacon at Dunkin’ Donuts so I did this week…YUMMY!

Today’s To Do List…
I have the day off work (yea!) and I plan on making a meal plan for the week and relaxing

Looking forward to…
Taking some time off work for a much needed vacation

A Favorite Bible Verse…
The Lord's Prayer, Matthew 6:9-13 Bible Verse Postcard | Zazzle.com

From the camera…

Sep 272020
 
Sunday Reflections

Reading…
Off You Go: A Mystery Novella by Benjamin Blackmore

Listening To…
The Man On The Mountaintop by Susan Trott

Books Reviewed Last Week…
Side Trip by Kerry Lonsdale

Watched…
Selfie Dad Loved this Christian based comedy!

In The Kitchen…
Chicken & Gravy
Leftover Meatloaf that I froze, mashed potatoes, corn
Instant Pot Chili
Veggie Pizza

New To Me Stuff:
McCormick Gourmet Japanese 7 Spice & McCormick Gourmet Organic Chipotle Chile Pepper and love both of them

Today’s To Do List…
Going to watch Fried Green Tomatoes again, and having my son put a new rear-view camera in my car because the one I had was a stick on the windshield type and it kept falling off in the hot and humid Florida weather

Looking forward to…
We’ve been waiting to get our house painted for a few months but because we’re in our rainy season the painter is way behind, they finally came Friday and primed it so I’m hoping it doesn’t rain tomorrow and they can finish it

A Favorite Bible Verse…
Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
Romans 12:12

From the camera…

❤️❤️❤️  My great granddaughter Jensen ❤️❤️❤️

She ‘s 2 months old now

Sep 212020
 

Side Trip By cover art
Side Trip by Kerry Lonsdale
Narrated by: James Patrick Cronin, Sarah Naughton
Length: 9 hrs and 53 mins
Release date: 07-07-20

An unforgettable and breathtaking novel of love, loss, and the unexpected routes that life takes from Amazon Charts and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Kerry Lonsdale.

With her deceased sister’s Route 66 bucket list in hand, California girl Joy Evers sets out on a cross-country road trip to meet up with her fiancé, checking off the bullets along the way.

Singer-songwriter Dylan Westfield has a serious case of wanderlust and a broken-down car. Stuck at a diner between LA and Flagstaff, he meets Joy, his complete opposite. She’s energetic. He’s moody. She’s by the book. He’s spontaneous. She believes in love at first sight. He thinks love is a complicated mess. But Joy has a brand-new convertible.

They strike a deal. She’ll drive him to New York. He’ll pay for gas. Only three rules apply: no exchanging of last names; what happens on the road, stays on the road; and if one of them wants to take a side trip, they both must agree.

A heart-stirring love story that spans a decade, Side Trip explores what-if. What if Joy and Dylan had exchanged last names? What if he’d told her she made him believe love was worth the risk? And what if they hadn’t made that second deal when they couldn’t say goodbye?

Thoughts
I love road trips so this book really appealed to me, and I loved every minute of it… almost. I loved the way Joy and Dylan interacted with each other. I loved that their first encounter was a road trip and that if one of them thought of a “side trip” they wanted to take, they would have to see if the other person agreed to it, and of course they did. The side trips were the most interesting parts of the book for me.

The ending was really sad and I paused to think things through before listening to the last little bit. And here is where the book took a dive, in my opinion. There was another alternate ending which was the complete opposite of the first one. Even though I enjoyed the book up until the end, I didn’t enjoy the dual endings at all.

Sep 182020
 

Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs

3 Pounds Chicken thighs, About 6-8
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Teaspoons Salt
2 Teaspoons Garlic Powder
2 Teaspoon Onion Powder
2 Teaspoons Italian Seasoning
1 Teaspoon Black Pepper
1 Teaspoon Paprika

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with foil for easy cleanup and set aside

Remove the chicken thighs from their packaging and pat them dry with paper towels

Arrange the chicken thighs on prepared baking sheet and drizzle with the olive oil rubbing the oil into the chicken to coat

In a small bowl mix together the salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning, and paprika

Sprinkle the spices over the chicken evenly

Bake chicken in preheated oven for 35-45 minutes

Adaptions
I only had 1 1/2 pounds chicken thighs so I cut all the spices in half and baked them in my Instant Omni Plus Air Fryer Toaster Oven using this air fryer calculator and did them at 370 for 28 min.

Thoughts
These chicken thighs were so moist and tender and the seasoning was very good. I also made Vigo Yellow Rice and fried green beans. The thigh recipe was so quick to put together. This was a very good meal, I’ll be making it again!

Weekend Cooking

Sep 152020
 

Teaser Tuesday Time

Anxious People Audiobook By Fredrik Backman cover art

Anxious People by Fredrik Backman

FIRST CHAPTER: 
A bank robbery. A hostage drama. A stairwell full of police officers on their way to storm an apartment. It was easy to get to this point, much easier than you might think. All it took was one single really bad idea.

TEASER: 
“Dad? The phone that we sent in for the perpetrator, where did we find it when we came in?” Jack suddenly asks.
“It was there on that little table,” Jim says.
“That explains it,” Jack sighs.
“Explains what?”
“We’ve been thinking about this wrong all along.”

Sep 132020
 
Sunday Reflections

Reading…
Make Something Good Today by Erin & Ben Napier
I love their show Home Town!

Listening To…
Anxious People by Fredrik Backman

Books Reviewed Last Week…
None. I’m still reading but  just not motivated to write reviews

Watched…
A friend recommended School Of Life, so I watched it Thursday, it’s a very funny movie

In The Kitchen…
8 Can Slow Cooker Vegetable Soup
Steak & Baked Potatoes
Johnsonville Smoked Beef Brats Links
Turkey wrap with mustard and colby jack

New To Me Stuff:
Nuthin’

Today’s To Do List…
The usual

Looking forward to…
My next Sat. or Sun. off so we can go for  another drive

A Favorite Bible Verse…
“Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.”
Luke 21:36

From the camera…

I haven’t seen this photo in many many years!

My BFF in Jr. High sent me a copy, I think it was 9th grade.

I’m next to last.

Sep 112020
 

Excuse the messy bowl, it was round two

8 Can Slow Cooker Soup

1 lb ground beef
1 can ro-tel tomatoes and green chilies
1 can whole kernel corn
1 can veg-all brand vegetables
1 can chili without beans
1 can chili with beans
1 can diced tomato
1 can campbell tomato soup
1 can campbell vegetable soup

Brown and drain ground beef
Add to large slow cooker

Add:
Ro-Tel tomatoes
corn
Veg-All
both chili’s
diced tomatoes
both soups

Stir

Turn Slow Cooker to low; may simmer all day if desired

Notes: I didn’t have any hamburger so I used Uncle John’s Pride Mild Country Sausage

Thoughts
I love soup and vegetables so I knew I’d love this. My son doesn’t like soup or vegetables but he said he’d try it. And he shocked me when he went back to get more! That’s why the bowl is so messy. He said it was really good.

This is so cheap, easy and quick to put together that I’ll definitely be making it again, especially since Anthony liked it so much.

Weekend Cooking

Souper Sundays

Sep 072020
 

Teaser Tuesday Time

Beaches, Bungalows, & Burglaries: A Camper and Criminals Cozy Mystery Series Book 1 by [Tonya Kappes]

Beaches, Bungalows, & Burglaries:
A Camper and Criminals Cozy Mystery Series Book 1
by Tonya Kappe

FIRST CHAPTER:
Chapter 1

“A campground?” I gulped back a good hissy fit because one could never underestimate the power of a good hissy fit, something I’ve tried really hard not to do in years. “As in, tiny little metal houses and porta potties?”

“Well, I think they have a toilet in them,” said Stanley Shelton, my lawyer.

TEASER: 
Another woman stood up from a leather chair, which I found sort of odd in a laundromat. She held a book in her hand. She appeared to be in her late twenties, if I had to guess. She had her brown hair pulled up into a ponytail. “I’m Abby Fawn, Normal County Public Library librarian and part-time Tupperware sales associate.”

Sep 042020
 

 

The Hillbillies Meatloaf

3 lb. hamburger
3 eggs
13oz, bag Ruffles Cheddar and Sour Cream Potato Chips
2 bunches green onion
3/4 c. milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Ketchup (as much as you want)
2 spoons brown sugar

Put some butter in pan and saute onions
Crush chips & put in big bowl
Add milk
Add some salt & pepper
Add eggs
Add cheese
Add onions
Add hamburger
Mix well
Put in glass pan
Make loaf w/gaps on side for grease
Bake at 350 for 45 min.

While it’s in the oven:
Put ketchup in a bowl
Add brown sugar
Mix

When the meatloaf is done:
Spread ketchup/brown sugar mix on top of meatloaf
Put back in oven for 15-20 min.

Thoughts
When I first saw this recipe I thought “Ruffles Cheddar and Sour Cream Potato Chips in meatloaf? Yuck!” I don’t like cheddar or sour cream chips and thought that it would taste terrible but I thought I’d give it a try.

Adaptions: I used more brown sugar

The recipe was easy to make and not very time consuming. I was going to cut the recipe in half since there are only two of us but decided to not to and just freeze the leftovers, which will make two more meals.

I was very surprised that the meatloaf was so good! It’s one of the best I’ve ever had and I’m glad I didn’t cut the recipe in half. Now all I have to do is take a bag out of the freezer to thaw and then reheat it.  Will be making it again!

I love when I’m not sure about a recipe and it ends up being a favorite!

Weekend Cooking

Aug 302020
 
Sunday Reflections

Reading…
Still slowly reading Zoya by Danielle Steele & Laugh Out Loud: 40 Women Humorists Celebrate Then and Now…Before We Forget by Allia Zobel Nolan

Listening To…
I stopped listening to The Friendship List by Susan Mallery within the first 2 chapters and started Side Trip by Kerry Lonsdale which is ok so far

Books Reviewed Last Week…
Floating Twigs by Charles Tabb (I loved this book!)

Watching…
New show Tough as Nails with host Phil Keoghan

In The Kitchen This Week…
Trying to find recipes that are lower carb, have any that you love?

Question…
What is your favorite TV show?

Today’s To Do List…
No plans to go anywhere so reading, tv, maybe a load or two of laundry

Looking forward to…
Things getting better so I can go visit my family in Ohio

A Favorite Bible Verse…
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
Matthew 5:9

From the camera…

Jaspurr says that 2020 is giving her a headache

Aug 292020
 

Chicken Burrito Skillet

1 pound boneless skinless chicken
breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
2 tablespoons taco seasoning mix
1 -15 oz  whole Black Beans, drained, rinsed
1 can (10 oz each) Ro*Tel® Original
Diced Tomatoes & Green Chilies
1 cup water
1-1/4 cups instant brown rice, uncooked
1 cup shredded Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese blend
Chopped cilantro, optional: do not like cilantro so didn’t use

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat
Add chicken and cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally
Add onion and taco seasoning; cook 2 minutes more
Stir in black beans
Add tomatoes/green chilies & water; bring to a boil
Stir in rice, cover, reduce heat, simmer 7 to 10 minutes or until rice is tender
Stir in 1/2 cup cheese
Sprinkle top with remaining cheese and cilantro, if desired

Thoughts
This was really good. We don’t like cilantro so I didn’t add it. It was quick and easy to make and I only used one skillet, a spoon, a measuring cup and a measuring spoon. I bought chopped onions in the vegetable section (I recently started doing this because it saves time and I have chopped onions in my fridge for whenever I need them)

I will definitely make this again.

Weekend Cooking