Tuesday, January 30, 2018


Around 3:00 Thursday afternoon 
it started to snow.
  It lasted all of about
 two minutes 
and then the sun came out. 
 Once more, 
just before bedtime, 
it happened again.
As the big feathery flakes 
came down,
 highlighted by the light of the 
street lamps;
 not to beat a dead horse, 
it resembled a scene right off of
 a Christmas card.
The first snowfall 
 is always a memorable
 and pretty sight for me.

  The thought of going to bed
 and waking up to a winter wonderland 
is, in my mind, 
the ultimate dream.

yet again, 
the dream was 
short lived...

...and the morning news
 tells the
 whole story.

This was the scene 
at the Cottage in 2008. 
Such a pretty sight but
 doesn't happen very often.

 The majority of you 
who live in the part of the world 
where Old Man Winter
 bombards you each year 
are probably thinking: 
"What a mindless twit she is." 
for a girl who grew up in a beach town 
on the west coast of the United States, 
snow in winter, 
even after all these years, 
is something to 
get excited about.

But...life goes on...
and we took a ride 
to higher country 
where remnants of the night's snow fall 
were still visible...

...very beautiful views.


Of course,
 a day of shopping 
can cure many ills
 and this little battery powered light,
that fits nicely into 
the metal sphere hanging over the game table,
 was just what the doctor ordered.

 We've been looking for
 something other than a candle 
to put inside it
 and didn't want 
electrical wires to show.

  This turned out to be
 just the right thing and 
even though it doesn't give off 
very much light, 
it has just enough twinkle ability 
to make it noticeable. 
the sphere has a purpose.

Have you ever seen
 a more enchanting little rabbit
 in a cabbage patch? 

 Makes looking ahead 
to spring
 an important endeavor.



I want to thank everyone
 for the kind words about last week's post.
  I don't very often 
write about food,
 as I have said, my camera doesn't take
 very good photos of prepared food 
and since we are so simple in our tastes,
 I didn't think there would be much interest. 
 But, I had some asking about
 the mustard potatoes,
 so I thought I would share the full recipe with you here:

I am showing the full recipe,
 but would imagine
 just the potatoes and the sauce 
would make a great
 side dish.


6 pork loin chops, cut 3/4 inch thick

1 tablespoon cooking oil

1 10 oz. can condensed cream of mushroom soup

1/4 cup dry white wine or chicken broth

1/4 cup Dijon style mustard

1 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 teaspoon pepper

6 medium potatoes, cut into 1/4 inch slices

1 medium onion, sliced

1.  In a large skillet brown pork chops on both sides, half at a time, in hot oil.  Drain off fat.

2.  In a large mixing bowl combine soup, wine or chicken broth, mustard, thyme, garlic and pepper. 
 Add potatoes and onion, stirring to coat.  Transfer to a 3 or 4 quart slow cooker.  Place browned chops atop potatoes.  
 cook on low heat setting 
for 7 to 8 hours 
or on high setting 
for 3 1/2 hours. 
 Makes 6 servings.



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Tuesday, January 23, 2018


I am really having trouble 
thinking of things to
 write about lately.

  I went looking through my photos
 to see if something would 
jog my creative juices.

 There wasn't anything there 
that did just that, 
but I did find something 
that got my 
appetite flowing.

I have a habit of 
taking photos of the things that I cook.
if I think they look
 pretty and palatable.
  The only thing is 
that my little camera 
doesn't always make the food look 
as good as it does to my eye.
I point, click and then 
forget about it. 

...but today 
when I saw this turkey breast 
it looked pretty good and 
I remember that it tasted really good.

 now you will get the story 
of how that happened.

Every once in awhile 
one of those corny infomercials 
will catch my eye and 
no matter how I try to resist,
 I end up falling for it.

 It is a known fact in my family 
(namely my loving SIL) 
that I probably fall for it
 way more than I should.
This NuWave oven 
is one of those things.

 I have to tell you though,
 and even that naysayer 
has been known to agree,
 that it is one of 
the best appliances 
that we own.

We have cooked everything 
meat-wise along with roasted vegetables 
and they all cook to perfection. 
 Tender and juicy 
and in much less time 
than the conventional oven.
  It is very portable
 so it goes into the motorhome 
and it is a great thing for
 the summer kitchen 
as it doesn't put off any heat.

We like pasta. 
 Sometimes we have it by itself 
or as a side dish. 
 It is always good
 either way...

...and accompanied by 
garden tomatoes 
with a sprinkling of 
salt, pepper and fresh basil
it is unbeatable.

I made
 some fresh tomato soup 
the other day. 
 This time of year 
soup is just the thing 
and with a little slaw and garlic croutons
 it tastes wonderful.

I tried a new recipe 
for beef stew, 
loaded with 
potatoes, carrots, onions and mushrooms. 
 A healthy and filling dinner.

we are having pork chops
 with mustard potatoes. 
It is still cooking 
in the crock pot and 
smells really good.

We have been doing 
our grocery shopping at 
Trader Joe's 
for the past few weeks.

 Even though 
we have to drive a ways to get there,
 the price of the groceries,
makes up for it. 
we can feed ourselves really well
 for about two weeks 
compared to the price 
for one week of food 
from local grocery stores...

...and they have 
the most gorgeous display of
 cut flowers 
for really great prices.

Sitting down at the table 
with good food, 
pretty flowers and
 cloth napkins 
makes an evening at the Cottage 
very special.

Hope you are enjoying 
a special evening 
wherever you are.


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Tuesday, January 16, 2018


is already half over 
and the snowmen are
 making their annual pilgrimage 
throughout the Cottage...

...they are always welcome 
right after Christmas is all put away 
and this year 
that was not an easy task.

 There was something 
about this Christmas 
that seemed extra special 
and it was harder than usual 
to let it go.

I started packing up 
most of the decorations 
on New Year's Day 
but kept putting off
 taking the tree down.

With the exception of
 that icicle garland, 
there was something magical
 about this tree.

 When I took the first photo 
after decorating it,
the garland stuck out 
like a sore thumb to me 
but I didn't want to disturb
 the other ornaments 
so I just left it.

 The Captain says 
it looks like shark teeth!

As I said,
there was something magical
 about this tree.
It reminds me of 
a pretty lady
 dressed up in
 a ball gown...

 ...a scene from 
a child's doll house, 
or the setting for the ladies of
  Little Women...

...and when seen from
 our TV viewing spot at night,
 with the lamps lit
 and the candles glowing,
 it was a sight
 that I did not want
 to change.

But, finally, 
change it did, 
and about two weeks after Christmas
 the tree was taken down 
and packed away
 for another year.

  I think I am in mourning
 just a little bit.

For Christmas 
I added some sprigs of greenery 
and berries
 to this garland 
I bought at Michaels.

 After Christmas,
 I added these paper pom poms 
for a more "winter" feeling 
and will keep it up for
 awhile longer.

See the plant by the window
 on the pedestal?

 In April of 2017, 
I brought this China Doll home
 from the nursery.

 Notice that it reaches 
to the top of the floral painting 
at this stage.

 I thought it was pretty 
with its delicate foliage 
but since I have never had
 much luck with indoor plants,
 the saleslady 
had to talk me 
into it...

...and she was right.

  It just won't stop growing.
  I think I will have to 
trim it back 

I got this grape ivy 
about the same time
 and have had to trim it
 a few times.

 It looks like 
I might be nurturing 
a sort of a
 green thumb!

This has been
 a very slow news week 
at the Cottage.

 Hope everyone is having 
a good start to
 the new year and 
keeping warm and dry.


Please join me today at:


Thank you, ladies, 
for inviting me to 
join your parties.