Sunday, August 21, 2016

Week 35, 8-21-2016

Thoughts and Quotes: We can always choose to perceive things differently. You can focus on what's wrong in your life, or you can focus on what's right. But whatever you focus on, you're going to get more of. Creation is an extension of thought. Think lack, and you get lack. Think abundance and you get more. A hidden belief that many of us hold is that there is something wrong with being too happy. We have been taught that it's arrogant to think we're deserving of total happiness. If anything comes into our lives - love, success, happiness - which seems like it would be suited to a "deserving" person, we conclude it can't possibly be for us. We have been unable to accept joy because it doesn't match who we think we are, yet it is not only our right, but in a way, our responsibility to be happy.

                                                         Marianne Williamson, A Return to Love

Theme Dining (sort of): When Friend Joey and I were shopping at Bon Worth, we bought some multi-blue tee shirts. You can't beat their tops for comfort - they snuggle you. Later, Joey bought one for her Sister Kathy (my Friend Kathy). Then on a trip to Branson, Friend Katie Sue and I went to Bon Worth and she bought one. I thought it was time for a little get-together, so I took a photo of my top and made the invitations and christened us The Blue Belles.

This was a no-big-deal lunch, so I did a simple blue and white table. Katie Sue's place is different because she prefers hot tea to iced tea.

I made my go-to lunch, which can be done mostly in advance: Crunchy Chicken Casserole, Cranberry Salad, Green Beans, Parmesan Puffs (recipes on Week 2).

For dessert, I made another Earthquake Cake to have with vanilla ice cream.  My cake still overflowed a little, but I haven't given up yet. I'm going to try a different brand of cake mix. So you can try your luck, here's the recipe.


Non-stick spray
2 cups coconut
1 cup chopped pecans

1 box chocolate cake mix
Water, oil, eggs according to mix directions

1 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 stick butter, softened
3 cups powdered sugar

1 cup chocolate chips

Heat oven to 350°.

Spray a 9 x 13 baking pan with non-stick spray.  Sprinkle in coconut, then nuts.

Prepare cake mix according to the box directions.  Pour over.

Mix cream cheese, butter, and powdered sugar until creamy.  Dollop onto cake batter.  Do not cover the batter – the batter needs to bake up and around the cream cheese mixture.

Sprinkle chocolate chips on top.

Bake for 40-45 minutes. 

Note:  This cake would be better named Mind-Of-Its-Own Cake, because you never know what it will do.  I suggest a cookie sheet under the baking dish, just in case it overflows.

Katie Sue brought flowers, which I've been enjoying in my family room.

And this was her Thank You card, along with a "Just Because" card. She's so talented.

Tidbits: If you're ever feeling unappreciated, just remember that the things you do are appreciated long after the "thank you" at the time of the act. As I was cutting lemon for our lunch, I was thinking of my dear Friend Mim, who gave me this bamboo cutting board as a party favor at one of our Cooking Club lunches. I feel her love every time I use my little board. I have some orange measuring cups from Tupperware (remember those?), which Friend Kathy gave me back in the 1980's. They're my favorites, and I think of her with each use.

Time for Others: Our next five cards were finished, so we had show-and-tell.


Tasting: Friend Joey is looking for a few pieces of French Swirl pink glass dishes to finish her set, so we went to Spring Creek Tea Room, which is in a building with flea market booths.  We both had salads.  Hers was a Santa Fe and mine was the House Salad with a scoop of Chicken Salad and White Cheddar Strips.  Yummy!  

Spring Creek has wonderful desserts, but we were both good girls, and only admired them.

And we didn't find the pink dishes, but I was intrigued by this use of old Readers Digests.

Thrifting (upscale): Flea market prices don't compare to thrift store prices (and you have to pay sales tax), but the hunt for the pink dishes was on, and I found things I couldn't resist.

Individual size - $10.26

Regular size - $12.96

Eight sets - $21.54

Seven sets, but two chipped cups - $14.79

Handpainted pitcher with large mugs (iced tea size) - $15.12

Now I'll need to redo my Cabbage Patch table - $10.80 total

My only bargain (it's peach) - $4.27

We found only one pink small bowl for $16 - you've got to be kidding!  So the hunt continues until Joey finds her dishes or I go bankrupt, whichever comes first.

The Pepper Update: Poor baby lost his manhood this week. I didn't realize it was so simple for male kitties. The incision is so small, there aren't stitches. I took him in the morning and picked him up that afternoon. He was restless because the anesthetic hadn't worn off, but by morning, he was back to being himself. 

He got his first email from Cousin Tuxie, who lives with Aunt Joey:

Dear Pepper:
As your cousin, I felt I should offer you some comfort and Catly advice. First, the comfort: It really doesn't hurt that much.
Now the advice:
Play it up to the hilt!  Your new adoptive mother is probably feeling somewhat guilty for stripping you of your manhood (and lots of fun), so take full advantage of this opportunity. I did😼.
Want new toys?
Extra treats?
Lots of sympathy and attention?
Go for it!!

Love,  Cousin Tuxie

And he got his first card from Aunt Carol:

He wrote Dr. Hardy a letter to bring him up to date:

Dear Dr. Hardy,

I just wanted you to know that I am
doing well.  I’ve decided that I like
being a house kitty.  I have air
conditioning, maid service, room
service and ten square meals a day.

If Aunt Patsy gets down on the floor
at my level, I let her pet me.  She
dropped something on the floor the
other day, and I batted it from the
kitchen, around the corner and into
the living room.  Sometimes I had to
stop and lick my paw, because it got
cold and wet.  Aunt Patsy said that
it’s an ice cube.  I really liked it.

I’m being a good boy.  I don’t climb
on the furniture, I don’t scratch the
furniture, and I don’t try to get out.

My wounds are healing, and I’ll stay
in touch.

                Gratefully yours,


Day 85

Day 86

Day 87

Day 88 

Day 89

Day 90

Day 91




Leaf Peeking, Picnic in the Park, Corn Maze, Fall Festivals, Apple Picking



  1. I am thrilled the cat is doing so well, she is certainly settling in to her new environment. Great finds, love the cabbage set. Take care.

  2. Hi Sweetie! I'm still playing catch up since I took a little blog break for a bit. I caught up on your last post and so happy you shared the tip! ;)

    I love the Pepper reports - and so happy he's recovering well from his surgery. Your patience and love will go far in helping him feel more normal and be a sweet pet, I'm certain of it. All ya need is love, right?

    Such Gals after my own hearts - paper crafting cards, thrift store shopping - and like your last post dreaming on Fall! Love it all!!

    Keep up the great work in all areas dear Gal. Blessings on the week ahead. xoxo

    1. You are such a dear, sweet reader. Your comments inspire me to set higher goals.

  3. Ahhha...Now I know who Pepper is. I enjoy your writing style, I feel like I'm right in the room with you.

    1. I wish you were. You could meet Pepper, I'd make a pot of tea (no sweets), and we could have a nice chat.