Saturday, October 29, 2011

Snow??? In October ???

Stuck inside for the day.. there were predictions of 60" of snow this winter in the Pittsburgh area, but still didn't think it would start this early... Yuck!!
The leaves are still on the trees, haven't put away the lawn furniture yet or carved our pumpkin.. Double Yuck
Latest update.. still haven't sold our house.. The new one is coming along,. have the outside siding on, but we're really getting discouraged.. It's gonna be a long winter and the real estate market is sluggish.. Patience!!
Planning to go to our daughters house in St Louis for Thanksgiving.. Didn't work so well last year as the flu followed us there and we all dropped.. one by one.. I think it'll be a family get-together as our son from Aspen is coming and our other son and family.. from right around the corner .. will stop by on their way home from Colorado Springs where her family lives.. Complicated ?? yeah.. we always are, but seem to work it out..
I'm gonna make bourbon balls and take with me.. but i think i'll use brandy instead.. nothing like bourbon balls to lighten up a family gathering :=)
I brought yarn back from our visit to Ireland. It's one big ball and had no idea how much was in it.. Found a yarn shop in a village nearby that weighed it and I found out I have almost enough for a sweater.. so found a pattern that had a patterned yoke of differet colors and hope I'll have enough.. It'll keep me busy anyway..
I know i've been busy, but can't figure how.. Hockey season has started and we share our tickets with another family.. Have gone to a few games and it's always fun.. Our Pittsburgh Penguins!! They're pretty good..
I'll try to post a few pictures.. And maybe my bourbon (brandy) ball recipe..

Monday, October 3, 2011

Yummy Carrot Cake and Cream Cheese Frosting

Preheat oven to 350' for 3 8" round pans or 325' for 9 x 13 pan

Mix in order given:
2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/4 cup oil
3 eggs
2 t vanilla
2 1/4 cup flour
2 t cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg
1/4 t allspice or cloves
2 t baking soda
1 t salt
2 cup shredded carrots
2 cups shredded coconut
8 oz crushed pineapple
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup raisins

Bake in either 3 8" round cake pans at 350' for 40 to 50 minutes or 9 x 13 pan at 325' for 60 minutes.

Cream Cheese Frosting

12 oz cream cheese
1 t vanilla
up to 1/4 cup milk, added gradually
3 to 4 cups confectioners sugar

Cool cake completely, then frost

Thursday, September 29, 2011


See, I'm trying to be more regular here.
Its almost hockey time.. Our Pittsburgh Penguins are back for another year... Love it
Was kinda a bad girl last night :=) We share our season hockey tickets with two other families.. one i've never met.. they are co-workers of a long-time friend of mine.. So arranged to meet my friend and give her the tickets they had bought.. Can't do this just anyplace, so met for Happy Hour at a nearby restaurant for half-price bottle of wine and half-price appetizers.. Why did I think we could get out of there in an hour??? did our exchange, then settled down to finish the wine and yummy apps(my favorite kind of dinner)..
An aside... Just got a new phone and its so great!! But, at my age, I'm not the speediest to learn how to use it.. It's a droid(??) of some kind.. Which means it has all kinds of applications, and that means you can download all sorts of things like the Weather Channel, Facebook, scrabble word games to play with friends (I'm addicted to that already.. have 5! games going at the same time), has GPS capabilities.. and so much stuff i haven't figured out yet.. It took me days to figure how to answer the phone!!.
Anyway, you can put on Facebook where you are.. so I did that and a young friend of mine (K) stopped in to see us. So we got another bottle of wine!!.. Then my friend left and K and I stayed and had another bottle of wine!! Oh dear, life is kinds slow today.. Poor K had to get up at 6 for work.. She's dragging today.. But I've still got the stamina.. always good to know :=)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I'M BACK !!!!!!

I received a note from Grammy asking where I was.. OMG, it's been so long I was embarrassed to show my face, but she inspired me to come back.. Grammy, thanks for your support!!
Where to begin... to start, no we haven't sold our house yet.. I mentioned before it is one-of-a-kind.. In-law suite, dirt road, older house, but I am disappointed because we remodeled to make it perfect for our family, and had hoped there was someone out there with the same needs!! We're not gonna give up, but its a bit discouraging.
We had kind of a quiet summer.. road trip to visit our long-time friends (the ones we visited in Ireland) in upstate New York.. Had lots of fun, went gambling.. always fun but not very productive :=). They go so much that they had 2 free rooms at a lovely resort nearby so we did stay overnight and enjoyed.
We had a weeks vacation all planned the last week in August with son and family to Hatteras Island.. Outer Banks.. absolutely favorite beaching!! Do you watch the Weather Channel?? Well, then you remember Hurricane Irene that came ashore at Hatteras Island at that time!! Yes, that was us!! Last minute maneuvering and we were successful..We were scheduled to go there Aug 27th and landfall was predicted Aug 28th!! Not the place you want to be!! So on Aug 26th, I found a 3 bedroom rental beachfront!! in North Myrtle Beach (at an Irene bargain $500/week!!)and off we went!! Stayed overnight in Mt Airy, NC (while Irene was landing in Hatteras).. Next day stopped in Charlotte, NC and had lunch with my niece and nephew and on to a perfect week at the beach :=) See, when you're old, you learn to be flexible!!
This weather stuff is becoming familiar remembering our 2 weeks in Paris because of the Icelandic volcano, the tornado and subsequent week power outage here while we were in Napa Valley, the 40" snowfall here while we were cruising, the Good Friday tornadoes while we were visiting St Louis. I know they're signs, I just don't know what they mean!!
What's our latest?? Surviving (barely) without my Jeep, 1 car is the pits!! We'll see what winter brings on our dirt road..
Continuing to enjoy the social perks of our retirement community.. swam a lot this summer, went to several parties there.. all while watching our new patio home taking shape.. Its frustrating..
Going to their end-of-month party Friday.. it's a tailgate party..I'm talking hubby into wearing his letter jacket from our college days.. Is that appropiate?? I think its great. Signed up to bring Carrot Cake.. do have a great recipe I'll share..
That's about it..
See, nothing much.. Looking forward to visiting Jenn and Adam for Thanksgiving again.. Hope we all survive better than last year!! Did I talk about the flu bug we brought with us?? Each of us went down for a few days, totally no food consumed the entire weekend.. it was tragic :=)
If you finish this thanks for staying with me and I will keep this up regularly
Thanks :=)

Friday, July 8, 2011

Keeping Up with the Kids

We're enjoying a small lull in the extended visit of our daughter and son-in-law.. Last Friday, we went to Hooters in town to see our nephew help broadcast Kenny Chesney's radio show.. As I said before, he graduated this June with a degree in Sound Engineering and immediately got a job with the famous country singer.. He's been touring with him all summer, and has some amazing stories to tell.. Just riding the charter bus thru the heartland of America has been a thrill for him:=)
So, we visited with him, then that night my daughter, SIL, and dog arrived.. The dogs get along beautifully (they were introduced during our tornado-ravaged vist to St Louis Easter)
Saturday, we took them to see our new community (god-willing!!) and swim at the clubhouse pool.. They naturally loved it and thought it would be a perfect move for us..
Sunday I had made rservations for the Ducky Tour of the city and rivers.. SO MUCH FUN!!! They have a World War II landing craft outfitted with seats and they drive off the road and right into the river!! Since it was both Regatta Weekend and Fourth of July, the rivers and town were packed with people having fun.. So that was the third day in a row of holiday reveling!! We ate lunch, then drove across the river to the Casino where we played and had fun for a few hours..
Monday, the fourth, we had all the in-town family over for a picnic.. Our poor grandson 5, picked up a bug the Tuesday before and Monday the Fourth was the 7th day of a fever..getting as high as 105' on several occasions!! Dr said it was going around and will eventually run its course!!?!! 105!! He was so wiped out, but now is starting to get back his strength.. Poor little guy
Tuesday the kids went to visit friends in Philly, then on to NYC for 2 nights ( us old folks needed the break :=).. Arriving home tonight then on to Pirate-Cubs game tomorrow.. The team is better than its been in years, so its once again fun to go to the ballpark.. Daughter and SIL met and lived in Chicago for several years, he has Cubs season tickets, so they're all excited to see the Cubs play the Pirates tomorrow :=)
So only a couple more days to keep this frantic pace, then back to normal!! And you know I'll really miss them when they're gone :-(

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Waiting For the Fourth!!!

Been another busy week :=) Played golf again.. Bought new balls, so I can afford to lose some more.. Only played nine because I was meeting a friend for half-price bottle of wine at a local bar/restaurant..
She's more than half my age, but I met her thru friends when I was working.. Shes a great person, but my daughter doesn't understand how I can have a friend her age :=).. Whatever.. Had a great time (we always do) laugh way too much!! She's a career girl, still very available, but absolutely enjoying herself every day.. We both wanted to see the singer that was on that night.. He's the regular that sings the National Anthem at all the Penguin games and has a small group that appears locally.. Always in good voice and very entertaining.. fun!!
We had an appointment to show the house today.. decided to take the dog and vanish for awhile.. Went to see the progress at our new community. got home and the agent never showed!!! wtf!! never called or acknowledged he wasn't coming.. that's why we should just wait around to see if they come.. I cleaned up for this guy 2 days in a row, as he had made an appointment yesterday, then cancelled.. Oh well, it'll only take one buyer!!
Daughter, husband and dog are arriving tomorrow for a visit..She hasn't been home in a year and a half.. They're bringing their dog cause they don't want to board him for that long..
We have an ambitious schedule for the next week.. We're going downtown tomorrow to meet our nephew.. the one that travels on Kenny Chesney's tour.. He's the sound engineer for the remote Serius radio that is broadcast from every staduim stop.. If we can wrangle tickets for Saturday nights show, he can get us to the front row.. So, we'll try.. Saturday gonna take the kids to our new place.. show them the models and swim at the pool..
Sunday, I got tickets for the Ducky River Tour.. It's an amphibious boat (like that old WW II landing craft) and a fun tour.. goes thru the city streets and in and out of the rivers.. Probably see other city sights and I'm guessing we'll end up at the casino!!!
Monday probably a cook-out at home with the kids.. Will be fun.. I'm always game for a trip downtown to watch the fireworks.. What a treat that is.. The Zambelli family is from here and their fireworks shows are the best.. And to make it so special, they shoot them off from a barge in the river.. the booms echo off the surrounding hills and the sounds are amazing..
Happy Fourth of July.. Enjoy

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Catching Up...

Our anniversary dinner was great!! We went to Grandview Saloon atop Mt Washington.. Gorgeous!! Didn't go overboard.. Couple drinks and great mushroom soup and crab sandwich :=) Excellent.. If I can download pictures, I'll post our view.. never get tired of it.. Then headed to the casino.. right across the river and on the way home.. Did just fine, thank you!! We both made a bit of money.. more than enough to cover dinner..
Been busy every night.. Went to a wine and cheese party last friday at our new "country club"! If we don't sell our house, we will have gotten a fun summer out of it!!
Played golf Wednesday.. lost way too many balls.. naturally had to stop at our favorite watering hole on the way home.. Staffed by lots of folks I had worked with.. Always get a good deal.. Lots of beers and 2 dinners.. $19.00!!
Friday we went back to the "end of the month" party.. Everybody brought a salad and bottle of wine.. seriously, I'm starting to wear down :=)
Daughter-in-law just texted.. we're gonna meet for a walk.. she'll be done eating.. we haven't yet.. Making Chicken Cachatori..(know that's not spelled right)
Here's another recipe.. Hope you like it..

Grandma's Baked Beans

Boil 1 lb dry baby lima beans till tender
Fry 1/2 lb bacon till soft, drain grease
In bean pot, mix tender beans, not drained
1/2 C sugar
1 chopped onion
1 T yellow mustard
1 t. celery seed
1/4 C catsup
2 T hot sauce (or to taste)
Bake 4 hours at 300', checking and add more water if necessary

Monday, June 20, 2011

Seriously!!!! Married 47 Years

Yes, you read correctly!! 47 years ago today we were married outside Buffalo, New York.. Seems like a week ago :=) Small Church wedding, back then if you married a non-Catholic, you could have a ceremony, but not a Mass.. My, how times have changed.. I remember it was hot and sticky. Our reception after, for about 75 people, was held at the local country club.. Very ritzy.. Our wedding album was in black and white...
Our honeymoon was a road trip to Virginia Beach.. Even back then we were beach people..
We then returned to hubbys bachelor pad in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. That place was the pits. Front door opened to the bedroom thru which you went on to the living room, then kitchen.. Lovely... But, to be honest, we knew he was being transferred to Pittsburgh. So a month later, we found an apt in Pittsburgh, and 10 months later our first little bundle arrived!! So much for my budding career in Microbiology.. It's been a wild and crazy ride ever since!!
Going out to dinner tonight.. we always pick a nice place.. preferably with good seafood.. Think tonight we're going to Mitchells Seafood Restaurant.. Its down on the South Side with a porch on the river.. the Monongahelia.. fun... OR maybe, I just thought of the Grandview Saloon.. That place is amazing.. an outdoor deck overhanging the top of Mt Washington... If you've ever seen pictures of Pittsburgh from Mt Washington, that's the view.. No prettier city in the world!!
Check out the eagles.. The three of them are out of the nest, roosting on nearby limbs, getting up the courage to take the plunge... Fascinating!!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Favorite Recipes

I thought occasionally I'll give you some of our favorite recipes..Absolutely nothing special, but family favorites throughout the years.

Shrimp Jambalaya

3/4 lb Mexican chiroza sausage (its spicy!) or any bulk spicy sausage
1 C chopped onion
1 chopped red or green pepper
1 or more cloves garlic
2 T butter or olive oil
2 16 oz cans of chopped tomatoes
1 1/4 C chicken boullion
1 C plain regular rice (not instant)
1 t sugar
3/4 t thyme
1/2 t or more chili powder
1 bay leaf
2 lbs cleaned raw shrimp
10 oz can black olives

In large skillet, fry chiroza sausage, drain and add butter or oil. Add onions, peppers, and garlic. Cook till soft. Add tomatoes, boullion, rice, sugar, bay leaf, and spices. Cover and cook till rice is tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Fold in shrimp and olives. Cook just until shrimp curl and turn pink (overcooking toughens the shrimp).
Serves 8 to 10

Monday, June 13, 2011

Little Bit of Everything Today

Busy day today... I'm ready for a good night's sleep... We had agent tour today, so decided to play golf in the morning.. first time this season!!.. I never devuldge my score.. we only played 9.. I think the first drive was the my best shot.. It only gets worse :=).. Really, I didn't play badly.. Hubby had a 45, so would have broken 100 if we played 18.. See, we're not very good.
I found the best little ice cream stand last week when Chris and I were running an errand kinda far from home..and I do mean little.. 4 tables outside and thats it.. We both got Ameretta cherry ice cream... WONDERFUL!! my new favorite..
Today we stopped there for lunch and were delighted!! they had 3 pages of food items!! what a selection.. Was impressed .. I had a toasted sub ( those fresh hard rolls that are amazing and hubby got a foot-long dog and of course, Amaretto cherry for dessert
Picked Chris up and went home.. Very good agent turn-out.. 7 car fulls!! feedback was very positive.. Loved the new carpet, privacy, in-law suite, etc.. Oh, somebody just buy it!
Practiced his batting and t-ball swing.. then I took him to swim at our new community.. sure hope we don't wear out our welcome!! The water was hot, but wow.. 70' windy air is sure chilly!! Turns out Marguerita Monday was today.. not next week.. so i was stuck in the pool with the kid while everyone else was drinking :=(
Then back home to pick up hubby and dog to get out for a 7 pm showing !!!! Ate at Wendy's (so much for cutting back) althought they have a new berry strawberry grilled chicken salad that was almost as good as my new favorite ice cream!! That was my day, and here i thought we were retired :=)