Thoughts and Quotes: Motivating gets you going and habit gets you there. Make motivating a habit and you will get there more quickly and have more fun on the trip.Zig Ziglar
Strange what motivates us, isn't it? When I was at the library, I wanted to buy some of the donated or discarded magazines to cut up for making cards and envelopes. They're only 10 cents, so a good source of materials. Katie had just donated some Victoria magazines, so I bought them as they usually have some pages which are made up of one photo and no print, so great for making envelopes.
But when I started going through them, I felt the sap rising and I wanted to jump up and redecorate the house, relandscape the yard, book a flight to France, and make dinner with all new recipes and a beautiful table.
Obviously, I still have the magazines intact, but didn't even finish the first one, because I had to get busy and at least tidy up the house, since redecorating is not on the horizon. By the way, if you haven't seen a Victoria lately, Hoffman Publications has really taken it up a notch. I might even renew my subscription, though I swore that I wouldn't have but one subscription, which is Tea Time, also published by Hoffman.
Gee, see what happens when I miss a post? I get really blabby.
Thank you: To my friends and family for offers of soup and can I bring dinner or anything else you need, and calls to check on me. An especially big Thank You to Joey, who didn't call to see if I wanted chicken soup, but to tell me she'd already made it and was bringing it over.
Now, let's get caught up.
Tasting: The Lunch Out gang went to Hula Hawaiian Kitchen, and we were all very pleased with our food. It's tucked away in a strip mall, and not fancy, but cute. And, yes, they have Spam on the menu.
Tea comes in giant cups
They serve a Kim Chee appetizer while you're waiting for your order. Oops! almost gone.
Linda and I had Teriyaki Chicken
Joey had Huli Huli Chicken (pineapple)
Bill had Mango Loco Moco Chicken
But Robert was the winner with his Chicken-Fried Steak (but instead got chicken)
We're going to Koriya (Korea) on Tuesday, but will be back at Hula the following week. Here's the LINK. For sure I want to go on Valentine's Day next year. I just found out that if you're single, you get 15% off and a big hug from the chef, and he looks very huggable.
Tasting: And if that didn't tempt you to go out for lunch, how about a cheesesteak sandwich? Bill and I went here the next day.
I've never had a Chicago-style sandwich, I always opt for Philly style.
One order of fries will feed two.
Nothing fancy here, but just good old greasy food and friendly service (order at the counter). Here's the LINK, and when it opens, wait for the photos to change to see some yummy-ness.
Time for Others: I was Bev's minion preparing food for her Bunco group. She did tons of prep work the day before, so we mostly just had a fun girls' day. She's so creative.
Deviled egg owls and toadstools
Veggies and dip train
And I was rewarded by the gift of this cake pan - love it
Thought you might like to see some of her prior creative offerings
I remember the day we cut these marshmallows and dipped them in colored sugar to make flower cupcakes. Sticky!
Tips: If you have lots of photos on your smart phone, and you haven't loaded them into your computer, be sure they're in a safe mode on your phone. Bill had over 500 photos on his phone, and then suddenly he had 37. Something went awry with the disk and the photos were lost forever. When he checked with his service provider (T-Mobile), they showed him how to save them so that it doesn't happen again. You might want to check yours.
Thank You: To Katie for her card class and for this darling individual teapot for my collection.
We made a cute masculine card
This Week's Mystery: Sometimes I get 21 page views of my blog in one day from Russia. They always come 21 at a time (once 63, so 21 X 3), but this week I've had more page views from Russia than from The United States.
Dear Russians: Welcome, and thank you for visiting my blog, and I'd love to know you. If you read this, please leave me a comment or email me at email@example.com and tell me abouit your group.
Tidying: I've been looking for kitchen rugs to replace these dreary things for ages, but no luck.
Then I ran across some new thick sponge rubber kitchen mats at Aldi. What a difference.
I thought that since they're mats (you just wipe them clean), and not rugs, maybe Pepper wouldn't like them, and I could work without a kitty under my feet. No such luck. Notice the black blob in front of the sink.
Tales: I finished another McNally book. When Vincent Lardo replaced Lawrence Sanders as the writer of these books, I couldn't believe that it would ever be the same. If I didn't already know in advance, I couldn't tell you where Lawrence left on and Vincent began. All I can say is, "Read one - you'll read them all". The library collects them under the Sanders name, even if written by Lardo, so check the S's and not the L's.
Tidbits: I ordered some Giant Allium seeds and they came all the way from China in this little tiny plastic envelope no thicker than a regular paper envelope. How did it keep from getting lost? Let's hear it for the postal services of the world.
Things That Grow: These daffodils were supposed to be pink, but they look peach to me.
I brought the last of my tulips in to enjoy before the next bout of rain ruins them.
I found these at Aldi for only $5.99. I don't know if they'll live in the yard, but I'll try, and pray my thumb will some day go from brown to green, since it certainly gets enough water, if dishwater counts.
Of course, what I really want to do is have the girls over for lunch and put these on the table with my peach dishes.
I love azaleas, and I love the color orange in all hues.
Peter put some lovely photos of our local Botancal Center in his newsletter today, and he gave me permission to share them.
Teaching and Learning: You can't teach an old dog new tricks. Oh, yeah?! Well, Brandon is certainly trying. He's the Library Specialist at our Ozark library. We had a one-on-one session on Blogger.
Did you notice the new drop-down tabs in my header? Pretty soon you'll be able to search my recipes by category and click to go to the week it was posted. I might change my titles to read Week 53 etc. instead of Year 2, Week 1 to make this an easier task. I have lots of work first, compiling the raw data, so I won't be meeting with him again until after Easter, but hang in there, it will happen. So thank you, Brandon, my new hero, for your patience and your knowledge.
Of course, all that work made us hungry, so we had to do some -
Tasting: Carol told me that Cafe L reopened for lunch on Thursday and Friday, so we had to go see. It was, and we're doing the Happy Dance. Such good food, such friendly ladies, so creative in their menu and their presentations. And iced tea is free with your lunch, and then they make you one for the road to sip while you drive.
Brandon had a Deconstructed Gyro
And I had Carnitas Tacos
On Fridays they serve Out-Of-This-World Brisket (my name). They call it a Brisket sandwich, but that's like calling Buckingham Palace a house.
And now to business -
Theme Dining: I finished I'm Going Green.
The Party Favors (Green Pepper Jelly at each plate)
WISCONSIN SPLIT PEA SOUP
Taste of Home Magazine
1 pound dry split peas
2-1/2 qts water
1 meaty ham bone
1-1/2 cups chopped onion
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced potatoes
1 tsp dried parsley flakes
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp dried marjoram
Salt, if needed
Put peas, water and ham bone in large pot and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat, cover and simmer for two hours, stirring occasionally.
Stir in remaining ingredients and bring back to a boil.
Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
Remove ham bone, remove meat, chop and return to pot.
OVEN FRIED CHICKEN
4 chicken boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup butter, rough chopped
1/2 cup milk
1 cup flour
1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1-1/2 tsps paprika
Heat oven to 350°.
Put butter in a 9” X 13” baking dish and place in oven to melt.
Put milk in small bowl (for dipping the breasts).
For coating, mix flour, Panko, and spices in a plastic bag large enough to hold one breast.
Dry chicken thoroughly, dip in milk, shake off excess, and shake in coating. Place in baking dish.
Bake 45 minutes.
Taste of Home
1 yellow cake mix
1 3.4 oz instant pistachio pudding mix
1 cup club soda
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Heat the oven to 350°.
Mix all but the nuts on low speed for 30 seconds; then on medium for two minutes. Add nuts.
Pour into a greased and floured tube or Bundt pan.
Bake for 40-45 minutes. Cool for ten minutes before removing from pan. Frost and garnish with more nuts, if desired.
I used pecans in the batter and chopped pistachios for garnish. I frosted the cake with Pudding Frosting, using pistachio pudding.
1 small instant pudding mix of your choice
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 cup milk
8 oz Cool Whip
Add powdered sugar to pudding mix in large mixing bowl.
Whisk in milk.
When pudding is set, fold in Cool Whip.
Refrigerate cake after frosting.
This will cover a 9” layer cake.
1 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup cold 2% milk
1 small instant pudding mix of your choice
2 tsps powdered sugar
Mix all on high speed until stiff peaks form.
Hooray!!! This finishes March, right on schedule. April is looking good.
Tablescapes: All finished.
(St. Louis Cardinals - my favorite baseball team, and the season opened today; also time for the dogwood to bloom).
A Lady Lunch
Dollar Tree Leaves
(At the Dollar Tree, everything really is $1. I bought the plates, mugs, and glasses there).
Theme Dining: April in Paris is almost finished. I didn't get a decent photo of the soup, the menu needs to be redone to remove the date, and some recipes haven't been input into the computer.
The second April theme meal will need a replacement, as I've removed the holiday theme meals. This means invitations, menu, table, food, recipes, and party favors. I'll probably do A Celebration of Citrus. We'll see.
All in all, a fairly easy month, so I'm taking next week off from working on the books. I'm going to concentrate on yard and cards. Remember the fairy tale where the vines grew over the palace (Sleeping Beauty)? My weeds must have read about it and thought it would be fun to emulate the vines and see if they could cover my yard and house.
Besides, I'm quickly earning the reputation of an ingrate, because I'm way behind on thank you cards. And Easter is just around the corner, so lots of cards to make.
ENJOY THE BLESSINGS OF SPRING
BUY SOME TULIPS
TAKE A WALK IN THE APRIL SHOWERS
THANK YOU FOR SHARING MY LIFE