Friday, September 30, 2011

The Friday Dog Blog

Friday, lovely Friday....The weekend is almost here and I am sooooo happy!  I can't lose my head and forget the Friday Dog Blog, though....Here is a cute one for your viewing pleasure....

Sofi the Talking Schnauzer loves to chase birds and ducks, and pull out tailfeathers when possible, much to the dismay of her human companions.  When around water, she is always on the lookout for a lazy duck or a lolling goose....

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Some Nice Ways To Handle Stress, Part 1

Hello and happy Wednesday!  With all of the bad news, disasters, crazy politicians and diving stock markets these days, some of us may be dealing with more stress than usual.  A friend of mine recently sent an article (thanks, Vicki!) that had some practical and easy ways to ease your stress levels.  Here is part 1....

1.  Get up 15 minutes earlier.
2.  Prepare for the morning the night before.
3.  Don't rely on your memory - write things down.
4.  Repair things don't work properly.
5.  Make duplicate keys.
6.  Say "no" more often.
7.  Set priorities in your life.
8.  Avoid negative people.
9.  Make copies of important papers.
10. Ask for help with jobs that you don't like.

Aren't those easy?  Try them out today and see if they work!

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Monday Recipe Blog

Hello, and happy Fall Monday!  How about a recipe?????

This blog features Lois Elaine Mueller's recipes every Monday. Lois' heyday was in the 1950's and 1960's, and her children swear she was the best cook that ever lived. Many baby boomers will remember these mouth-watering recipes, and these dishes are just as tasty today as they were in the sixties.

The Muellers were German, not Italian, but Lois Elaine wasn't stuck in a rut. She tried all kinds of recipes, and a family favorite was her Lasagna.  She actually got this recipe from her sister, Clarice.  Today we are featuring Lois Elaine's (and Clarice's) Lasagna recipe.....

Lois Elaine's Lasagna:
1 1/2 pound ground beef
2 cans tomato sauce
1 can tomato soup
onion flakes
sweet basil

1/2 package lasagna noodles
1 pound (large container) large curd cottage cheese
1 egg
parsley flakes
mozzarella cheese (1 package)
parmesan cheese

Brown the beef and add the other sauce ingredients plus a little water.  Let simmer while you are preparing the other ingredients.

Cook and drain the noodles. In a small bowl, mix cottage cheese, egg and parsley flakes.

Lay it all out in a large cake pan. Start with a layer of 1/3 of the sauce, 1/3 of the noodles, 1/3 of the mozzarella cheese,  1/3 of the cottage cheese mixture and a little parmesan cheese.  Do this until the ingredients are gone, but leave enough sauce to end with it.

Bake at 375 degrees for 1 or 1 1/2 hours, until everything is nice and bubbly.

Friday, September 23, 2011

The Friday Dog Blog

Hello, and what a great Friday we are having!  Here is a pooch for your Friday Dog Blog....

We asked Sofi the Talking Schnauzer to give us her best and cutest pose with a great smile.  Here it is....

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Do We Applaud Executions Now?

A couple of years ago I published my first post lamenting how rude our country had become.  This was during the infamous Town Hall meetings, where red-faced, screaming people disrupted the meetings and shouted down everyone who disagreed with them.  Unbeknownst to me, this was only the beginning of the decline and fall of our good sense.

The Tea Party arose, thanks in large part to the Town Hall meetings.  This is not a political blog, but sometimes things are intertwined, as is the case with our losing our humanity and politics.  The political arena has given a pulpit and excuse for people to express their "anger", and those angry people are the ones given a voice on the local and national news. 

The Town Hall meetings led to very large Tea Party rallies, where citizens were empowered to tote large signs with shockingly racist pictures and commentary on the President of the United States.  Some also encouraged violence and a takeover of our country.  I believe that most of the Americans who watched this just shook their heads, at least I hope so.

Over the months, things have gotten worse.  Watching the recent Republican debate, it was sad to hear the ovation when a candidate from Texas was asked about the fact that Texas executes more humans than any other state in the union.  That's how low we have finally sunk - applauding the death of others.  At a later debate another question received cheers - this one was whether a candidate would allow a young person to die if he was required to buy insurance but didn't.

One thing cheered me this past week - the video showing a group of people lifting a burning car to rescue a young guy who was thrown off his motorcycle after a wreck.  These people put themselves at risk to save a stranger's life.  Yes, there is still some compassion, courage and bravery left in America.  It's not in the political blogs, it's not at the debates, it's not at the Tea Party rallies.  It's within ordinary citizens who, like most of us, are sick and saddened by seeing the daily parade of hate on the internet and television.  Whether courage and compassion can defeat hate and anger in the battle for our country is yet to be seen.  I know which side I'm on....

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Monday Recipe Blog

Hello - I love September.  Still hot, but at least there's a promise of cooler weather to come....It's Monday, so it's time for another Lois Elaine recipe!

This blog features Lois Elaine Mueller's recipes every Monday. Lois' heyday was in the 1950's and 1960's, and her children swear she was the best cook that ever lived. Many baby boomers will remember these mouth-watering recipes, and these dishes are just as tasty today as they were in the sixties.

If your garden has survived this sweltering summer, it is probably only producing squash by now.  If you planted zucchini, you more than likely have it running out your ears.  A favorite way to get more healthy squash into a family's diet is to put it into delicious bread, which is actually more like delicious cake.  Lois Elaine was no different in the 1960's, and she used this recipe for Zucchini Bread.....

Lois Elaine's Zucchini Bread:

Makes 3 loaves....

3 eggs
1 c. oil (vegetable, canola, etc)
1 t. salt
1 t. baking soda
2 c. brown sugar
1/4 t. baking powder
3 t. vanilla
2 t. ground cinnamon
1 T. molasses
1 t. pie spice
4 c. flour
3 c. grated zucchini
1/2 c. walnut meats

Pour into 3 oiled loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.  (Wrap and freeze the loaves that you aren't going to eat immediately).

Friday, September 16, 2011

The Friday Dog Blog

Hello - We are finally turning the corner on a long, hot summer and hoping for no more weather records broken for a long time!  Here are two very terrific dogs for your Friday Dog Blog...

Princess Leia, the 10 foot tall poodle from Poteau, is on a mission.  She has decided to challenge every dog she meets to a footrace in an effort to prove that no one is swifter than the Princess.  Here she is in action, racing against another hapless victim.  Like Secretariat, she took charge in the final turn.  The Princess ended up beating the brown pooch by 14 10-foot-tall poodle lengths!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

They Didn't Have That Green Thing Back Then

Hello - Hope you are having a great Wednesday!  I am providing a You Tube link today, hope it works....

This video drives home the point that we do much more damage to the environment today than our parents and grandparents did.  It's pretty shocking the difference in the way of life between generations!

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Monday Recipe Blog

Hello, we are headed toward autumn, and not a bit too soon.  We are also headed toward another great recipe!

This blog features Lois Elaine Mueller's recipes every Monday. Lois' heyday was in the 1950's and 1960's, and her children swear she was the best cook that ever lived. Many baby boomers will remember these mouth-watering recipes, and these dishes are just as tasty today as they were in the sixties.

How about a cookie recipe today?  This recipe card looks a little different than most of Lois Elaine's, and the writing is different as well. Obviously this recipe came from a friend or relative whose identity is forever lost to time....

Lois Elaine's Molasses Cookies:

3 c. shortening (or butter or butter substitute)
4 c. sugar
1 c. molasses syrup
4 eggs
4 t. baking soda
2 t. salt
1 t. ground cloves
1 t. ground ginger
4 t. cinnamon
8 c. flour
powdered sugar

Combine ingredients.  It's best chilled overnight.  Roll into balls and roll in powdered sugar.

Bake 10 minutes at 375 degrees.

You can put jelly, nuts or a raisin in the center of each, if desired.

(Note from me:  I haven't tried this recipe, but I have a feeling it makes a LOT of cookies!  You might try cutting it in half unless you are feeding an army.)

Friday, September 9, 2011

The Friday Dog Blog

Hello and happy autumn Friday to you all.  Here is a feisty dog for your Friday Dog Blog....

Sofi the Talking Schnauzer has but one thing to say today....Go Sooners!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Ginger Is An Effective Treatment for Ailments

Hello, hope your Wednesday is going good.

Today we will look at the wonder spice - ginger - and its healing qualities.  Ginger is actually an herb, and its chemical structure has proved very effective in treating certain ailments.  It has been used in China and India for over 2,000 years, but we know it more as the principle flavoring in gingerbread, gingersnap cookies and the gingerbread coffee cake that you see on the left.

Ginger is readily available - it comes from fresh or dried ginger root or from distillation of the oil in the root by steam.  You can purchase ginger root in some groceries and health food stores, but you can make it easy on yourself and purchase ginger capsules or ginger oil at your favorite chain drug store.  If you do purchase the root, it can be prepared as a steeped tea, making it easy to consume.  Of course, it is a spice and can be purchased as such and used to flavor foods (also ginger ale), but be aware that when you eat one ginger snap, less than 1% of it is ginger.

The standard dose of ginger is between 75 and 2,000 mg per day, in divided doses, with food.

The best and most study-supported use of ginger is for stomach issues.  It is effective in combating colic, upset stomach, morning sickness, motion sickness, gas, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting after surgery, and nausea caused by cancer treatments.  It also reduces dizziness and there is some evidence that it may reduce rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis pain, but it takes months to begin its effectiveness in these areas.  There is also some evidence that ginger may protect against Alzheimer's by protecting brain cells.

Ginger helps stomach conditions by suppressing gastric contractions and stimulating the flow of gastric secretions, bile and saliva, and in this area, it is truly a wonder spice!

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Monday Recipe Blow

How is your Monday going so far?  Here is a recipe to make it even better!

This blog features Lois Elaine Mueller's recipes every Monday. Lois' heyday was in the 1950's and 1960's, and her children swear she was the best cook that ever lived. Many baby boomers will remember these mouth-watering recipes, and these dishes are just as tasty today as they were in the sixties.

Many of Lois Elaine's dessert recipes feature cherries.  Why?  The Muellers were from Michigan, which happens to produce some of the country's best cherries, so the family ate a lot of them.  This recipe, for Cherry Cheese Bars, calls for canned cherry pie filling, so you can make this recipe any time of the year, in any part of the world!

Lois Elaine's Cherry Cheese Bars:

1 c. walnuts, divided
1 1/4 c. flour
1/2 c. firmly-packed brown sugar
1/2 c. butter-flavored Crisco (or butter, or butter substitute)
 1/2 c. flaked cococut

1 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. sugar
1 egg
1 t. vanilla
1 can (21 oz) cherry pie filling

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottom of a 13x 9" pan.  Chop 1/2 c. of the walnuts for the topping. Set aside. Chop the remaining 1/2 cup of walnuts finely.

For crust:
Combine flour and brown sugar. Cut in Crisco until fine crumbs form. Add 1/2 c. nuts and coconut. Mix well. Remove 1/2 c. of mixture and set it aside. Press the remaining crumbs in the bottom of the pan. Bake 12 to 15 minutes.

Beat cream cheese, sugar, egg, vanilla until smooth. Spread over hot baked crust and return to oven. Bake 10 minutes longer. Spread cherry filling over cheese layer. Combine nuts and remaining crumbs and sprinkle evenly over cherries. Return to oven and bake 15 minutes more.  Cool and cut into 24 bars.

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Friday Dog Blog

Another Friday rolls around, and another dog rolls around....Here's a scaredy-cat dog for our Dog Blog....

Sofi the Talking Schnauzer is usually so brave!  Who would think that a simple dock on an admittedly very large lake in Michigan could make her flatten her ears and tuck her 1 inch tail?   She'll stand toe to toe with a bulldog twice her size, but cowers in fear at a little (well, a lot of) water.  Go figure!