Saturday, April 29, 2017

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Saturday, April 29, 2017

What the Beck???

My new neighbors - the Barnett Family

L - R  (Denise, Emily, Billy, Danielle, Abby, Grant)

Easter with the Barnett Family

Abby, Emily, and Grant fill a plate. 

 Brayden and JT, Danielle's boys, hunt for Easter eggs.

 This is Zeus.  He was the dog who dislikes wheels,
and really hated my rental car.
Now, I know he is a real sweetheart.

As usual, the wind was a blowin' as
we try to remember how many eggs
we actually hid in the yard.

      I have been blessed throughout my life to have the best neighbors. It began with the Burgers, Stopkas, Potters, and Johnsons.  I have made so many friends as I moved through my first three homes. It was very hard to leave the Serpicos, Mansours, Colemans, Connollys, Chevals, and Bowen families and others.

   Once again, I have found people who will be great friends. I want to thank the entire Barnett family for making me feel supported by offering friendship. I definitely have a shining star over my new home.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Thursday, April 27, 2017

What the Beck???

Recipe Review

Today’s Recipe and Location: Cherry Almond Crisp
Found in: The Pioneer Woman blog

I figured out that there are 455 calories, if 8 servings are made. (Please note that the calorie counts vary depending on the specific brands of ingredients that you choose to use.)

     This is a scrumptious dessert. I absolutely loved every bite. We served it with ice cream and it was great. I did not make it in individual ramekins, even though I have many of them. Since it was a family Easter Party, I decided to make it in a 9 x 13 inch pan. This one is easy to make and a true showstopper.

These are the ingredients that I used to create this recipe.

I began by making the crumb topping. 
I began with the flour...

and added in the granulated 

and brown sugars.

I put the cinnamon in the bowl

as well as the salt

and nutmeg.

After I mixed the dry ingredients, I
added the cold butter and cut it in to the dry ingredients.

The final ingredient was the almonds. The recipe
called for slivered almonds but I only had sliced
so that is what I used in this recipe.

Now, on to the frozen cherry mixture.  I put them in a bowl
and added in the granulated sugar,


almond extract and stirred it.

I dumped the cherry mixture into a 9 x 13 inch pan.

After smoothing it out, I added
on the crumb mixture.  Unfortunately,
I didn't have my camera with me, so I don't
have a final picture.  Darn!!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

What the Beck???

Recipe Review

Today’s Recipe and Location: Fruit Salad with Spiced Honey and Thyme
Found in: The Pioneer Woman blog

I figured out that there are 95 calories, if 8 servings are made. (Please note that the calorie counts vary depending on the specific brands of ingredients that you choose to use.)

     I tasted this, but the pineapple makes it a "no no" for me. I really loved the flavor!  This is a great refreshing salad for the summer!  I could not find any honeydew melon, so I just added additional fruit that was already in the recipe.  I also could not locate an anise pod.  I did have some anise seed, so I added a little to the recipe. I was supposed to strain it out but the seeds were so small I couldn’t even find them! Denise texted me to let me know that the anise flavor came through more the second and third days, and she liked it.

 These are the ingredients that I used to create this recipe.

 I began with pineapple chunks.

 I added in the cantaloupe.

 You can already tell that this is going to 
be a colorful summer salad.

 The green and red grapes are added.
I put in a little bit more of all of the fruit,
because the grocery didn't have honeydew melon.

 Now, on to the coating.
I heated the honey and water over the stove.

Here is where I made a mistake.  The recipe said
to cool the mixture, and then add the anise pod and thyme.  
As you can see, I added the anise seeds as it cooked.
OOPS!  I never located an anise pod so I substituted seeds.
It didn't appear to cause a problem with the dish. 

 It formed a foam which slowly
went away as it cooled.

 I put the thyme sprig in as it cooled.

The final salad.
Mmmmmm Good!!!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sunday, April 23, 2017

What the Beck???

Recipe Review

Today’s Recipe and Location: Salad on a Stick
Found in: The Pioneer Woman blog

I figured out that there are 125 calories each, if 12 skewers are made. (Please note that the calorie counts vary depending on the specific brands of ingredients that you choose to use.)

This is an extremely pretty item to serve. My frustration came when I tried to cut iceberg lettuce into cubes.  It just wouldn’t work because the head just fell apart. I then decided to roll the lettuce, so I could skewer it. It was frustrating, but it worked. At first I did not want to make it again, but every single skewer was eaten, and I heard many complements from the Barnett immediate and extended families.  Who knew? I will make it again, after all.

Here are the ingredients that I used to create this recipe.

See - ya just can't wedge it, but this was good enough for me.
I was making 4 recipes to take to the Barnett's home
on Easter Sunday. Denise was gracious and let me
make a few yummy Pioneer Woman recipes.

Next, came a cherry tomato.

I loved adding the English cucumber and 
chunk of mild cheddar to the skewer.

I think they were quite beautiful.

The recipe made 12 skewers, but I made 18 because that
is how many I could make with the entire head of lettuce.

Now, on to the dressing.

I began by adding olive oil to a bowl.

The next ingredient was red wine vinegar.

Italian seasoning was then added as was

the salt and pepper.
I only held the containers like this
for the photo because I had already 
added them to the mix.

Whisk it together.
I served it in a small canning jar.
The recipe said to brush it on the skewers,
but we didn't have a brush so I just poured
a small amount over each skewer.

 Look at all of this yummy food!

 Miss Emily Barnett enjoyed the skewer!

She is such a riot!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Friday, April 21, 2017

Friday, April 21, 2017

What the Beck???

It has been since January 8th, 2016 that I posted my Bucket List.  I was so focused on the movies that I forgot about everything else on the list. Am I driven or what???
I updated it and happily crossed off some things I have accomplished!

My Bucket List

send greeting cards in a timely fashion
learn a new skill
invite my neighbor women to a tea luncheon
submit an article to a magazine
Host a family brunch
Talk a walk or dance in the rain
I want to create units for teachers to purchase
Write a book on organizing a home
Use my dogs to design a series of greeting cards
Plan my funeral
Spend a fun day with each of my nieces/nephews (Alaina has          volunteered to be first!)
Take a formal cooking class
Organize and host a Christmas Caroling Party
Watch the IMBd list of the best 250 movies
Vacation in Colorado
Create a list of home repairs
Prepare to teach a new course at Aurora University
Visit a Zoo and photograph the animals
Have absolutely no debt
Set up a schedule for next summer to visit area cities
Organize and purge the basement
I am going to learn as much as I can about large animals
Make repairs in each and every room of my home to prepare to sell
Research Hadrian’s Wall for visit to Scotland
Enter a quilt in a local fair
Write a book about school for parents
Host a game party
Purchase a new car or truck
I would like to learn more about fostering animals
Visit the narrowed list of Kentucky towns each for a weekend
Have a B.M.I. of 24.9 or lower
Return to Florida/Alabama and see old friends
Play tennis again
Learn to play bridge
Have an in-ground pool
Finish writing a book on the Scent Family
Save up enough money for a down payment on my Kentucky house
Research every town in Kentucky in hopes of relocating
Work on learning calligraphy and bettering daily penmanship
Begin making my own clothing using a mannequin
Volunteer at an animal rescue
Visit all 50 states
Take a photography course
Complete all of Mom’s and my scrapbooks
Go skiing again in Colorado
Meet the Duggar and Bates families
Watch every nominee and winner for the Academy Awards to date
Remodel my kitchen
Take piano lessons
Write 2 books for my great-niece and nephews
Travel to Wales
Travel to Scotland

Take an Alaskan cruise

Bucket List Movie Update
Academy Award Nominated Movies
(my goal is to have watched EVERY Academy Award nominated Best Picture nominee since the beginning of the Academy Awards in 1927)

2002     Chicago
starring: Taye Diggs, Cliff Saunders, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Renee                      Zellweger, Dominic West, Jayne Eastwood, Richard Gere
plot –   Velma, played by Zeta-Jones, is a husband killer being                         defended by Billy Flynn, Richard Gere. Roxie, Zellweger,                 is also sent to jail and will work with Billy Flynn, too.                     The women battle each other.
This was a very good movie. I never knew that Zeta-Jones and Zellweger were such outstanding dancer and singers. I was amazed.

1994     Pulp Fiction
starring:  Tim Roth, Amanda Plummer, Laura Lovelace, John Travolta,                   Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis, Eric Stoltz, Rosanna                     Arquette, Uma Thurman, Christopher Walken,
plot –     A crime story where Vega (Travolta) and Winnfield                           (Jackson) are hitmen. The story delves in to the lives of                 their boss, his wife, a boxer, robbers, and a lot of drug                   use.
I know this is a classic, but excessive drug use and killing people are not on my list of enjoyable movies. There were some funny moments, an I love to watch Travolta dance, but otherwise I will pass on watching this movie again.

1998     Shakespeare in Love
starring:  John Madden, Gwyneth Paltrow, Joseph Fiennes, Geoffrey                     Rush, Colin Firth, Ben Affleck, Judi Dench
plot –    The movie focuses on Shakespeare as a young man, who is                   struggling to succeed until he meets a woman. He is                     then able to write a great play.
I usually hate anything related to Shakespeare, but not this one. It is probably because it was not spoken in verse. I enjoyed this one.

2000     Gladiator
starring:  Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Oliver Reed,                 Richard Harris
plot –    Maximus, was chosen to lead, but lost the power to                           Commodus. Maximus now leads a horrible life until he                   becomes a great gladiator and sees Commodus again.
This was a really good movie and won the Academy Award in 2000. The storyline was excellent and I understood the violence, even though I don’t ever like it.

1990     Ghost
starring:  Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore, Whoopi Goldberg
plot –    Sam (Swayze) needs to solve his own murder. He also tries to                 connect with his wife, Molly through psychic, Goldberg.                 Once Sam accomplishes these two things he can go to              Heaven.
This was a fabulous movie. Swayze, Moore, and Goldberg were amazing in their roles. I had so many emotions and reactions. I was happy to see the couple’s relationship, yet sad when he died. Goldberg brings humor to this story. This is a movie that everyone should see. You will love it.

1957     Sayonara
starring:  Marlon Brando, Patricia Owens, James Garner, Martha Scott,                   Milko Taka, Red Buttons
plot –    The love story of an Air Force Major and his Japanese                         girlfriend. They eventually fight all opponents to marry.
This was a pretty good movie. I am a sucker for a love story that has obstacles trying to undo their love.

1946     Henry V
starring:  Laurence Olivier, Leslie Banks, Robert Newton, Renee                         Asherson, Leo Genn
plot –    Olivier was the producer, director, and star of the film. This                   is the story of King Henry the Fifth during the Hundred                 Years’ War. He is trying to take over France.
This was an okay movie. I looked at it as another movie about British royalty.

2000     Traffic
starring:  Benicio Del Toro, Jacob Vargas, Andrew Chavez, Michael                     Douglas, Don Cheadle, Michael Saucedo, Tomas Millan
plot –    The president hires a judge to tackle the rising problem of                   drugs. The judge’s own daughter is an addict, which he                 was unaware of at the time. 
A pretty intense movie.

I have now watched 474/527 movies, and have only 53 to go,

That is until I add the new ones for 2016! Unfortunately, the Aurora library is out of the ones I need, so I am now on the hunt in Bardstown, Kentucky. 

There were 9 movies nominated this year so my ratio is now 474/536. I now need to watch 62 movies to reach my goal and cross it off of my list

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

What the Beck???

I'm trying out new headers this week, so stay with me as I try many out. This one was taken at my new beauty parlor, True Bliss.

Recipe Review

Today’s Recipe and Location: Butterscotch Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Found in: The Pioneer Woman blog
why isn't this lit up?????

I figured out that there are 178 calories, if 39 cookies are made. (Please note that the calorie counts vary depending on the specific brands of ingredients that you choose to use.)

     You have to love butterscotch to love these cookies.  I adored them and they really reminded me of my Dad who loved all things butterscotch. I made so many cookies that I delivered three bags to the City of Bardstown Tech Guys and the other two bags to my bank. 
     These were to thank them for helping me get started in the town of Bardstown. People here are very kind and thoughtful and I am so blessed!

 Here are the ingredients that I used to create this recipe.

 I began by mixing the dry ingredients.
In went the flour,

 baking powder,

baking soda,

 and sea salt.

  I whisked it all together.
I use my mini whisk so it all stays in the bowl
and not all over me or the counter.

 Set the bowl to the side.
Using a pretty bowl makes me happy.

  I put the butter into my stand mixer bowl,

 and added in the brown sugar

 and granulated sugar.

 I'm ready to mix it up.

 I will never make cookies without a stand mixer again!


 It is time to add in one egg at a time.

 Once the eggs are mixed in, add in the vanilla.

 Now, slowly add in the dry ingredients.

 The luscious butterscotch chips 

 and rich chocolate chunks.

 The dishes are done and it's time to bake the cookies.
I have to change buildings, because the propane
is not in the yard yet, so I need to go to the cottage
to bake'em up.

 They are rolled and placed on a Silpat liners.
If you have not yet invested in these liners 
get out and buy them a.s.a.p.

 Hot out of the oven.

The closer you get, the better they smell!