Tuesday, July 17, 2018

A favorite summer supper -- Chef's Salad

Photo is from Pixabay.  You don't really think I'd remember to take a photo, do you?
 Last night we had one of our favorite summer meals -- a nice chef's salad.  During the dog days of summer, it's one of the best suppers I can think of, and my hubby is always happy to see it on the menu.  I did a search here and discovered I've apparently never posted this recipe ... which is really more of a formula, I guess.  So here goes:

CHEF'S SALAD

*Leafy greens enough to feed however many folks are at your table -- I like the baby leaf lettuces from Little Leaf Farms
*Chopped green, red, or yellow peppers to taste, if you like
*Tomatoes, cut in wedges, or grape or cherry tomatoes, halved, to taste
*Thin sliced swiss or provolone cheese, cut in strips, to taste
*Thin sliced deli ham, cut in strips, to taste
*Thin sliced deli chicken or turkey, cut in strips, to taste

And you could certainly add other things like olives, chopped green onion, avocado cubes, sliced hard-cooked eggs, or whatever you might like in a salad like this.

Layer the ingredients in a large salad bowl.  I like to make two layers so that the ingredients are well distributed when the salad is tossed.

I always use a thousand island type dressing with this salad, as it's what was suggested with the recipe I found years ago.  Here is what I combined to make last night's dressing:

DRESSING FOR CHEF'S SALAD

*3/4 cup mayonnaise
*1/2 cup barbecue sauce
*1 Tablespoon sweet pickle relish
*2 Tablespoons milk, to thin the dressing to your taste

Serve in a bowl alongside the salad, so diners may add dressing to their personal taste.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

July 11 Hodgepodge


Lovely Scripture graphic by Abby at Little Birdie Blessings
 Yes, it's Wednesday again, so it's time for the Hodgepodge with Joyce and friends at From This Side of the Pond

Why not join in this week? Just head on over, copy the questions, then paste and answer them on your own blog.  Go back over to Joyce's to link up, and you're done!   Here are this week's questions: 

1. What's something in your house you'd like to get rid of but can't?

The awful musty odor that our old furniture takes on only when it's hot and humid outside.

2. When is the last time you experienced a sense of nostalgia? Elaborate.

Every day this week as I've been working on Christmas in July posts for my Christmas blog, I've found myself wallowing in nostalgia for the 1950s and 1960s.  Several of the posts have to do with memorabilia I've been finding as I sort and sell items from my childhood home.

3. You're only allowed three apps on your smart phone or tablet...which three do you keep?

I don't have a smart phone and have only a very few apps on my tablet.   There are really only two apps I would not want to be without: Pinterest and Instagram.  I use my jigsaw puzzles app often, too, but I could do without it.

4. July 11th is National Blueberry Muffin Day. Who knew? Do you like blueberry muffins? If you were going to have a muffin would blueberry be your choice? What's the last thing you baked?

I do like blueberry muffins (especially made with fresh blueberries and warm from the oven) but they are not my top favorite.  

If I were going to buy a muffin I would choose the raisin bran or the gingerbread variety from our local supermarket bakery. 

If I were baking muffins I might choose a banana muffin with chocolate chips, an almond joy muffin, or a raspberry almond muffin.  Here's the link for the first one: Gluten free chocolate chip banana muffins.  You can find the others in this post, along with a bunch of my other favorite breakfast recipes.

The last thing I baked was a pan of brownies last Thursday morning, to take to an event at church that evening.
Almond Joy Muffins
5. What's the biggest way you've changed since you were a child? In what way are you still the same?

Biggest and most complete way I've changed: becoming a different person since trusting Jesus as Savior.   A few of the smaller ways: I can eat eggs now (though the whites need to be mixed in); I can deal with bullies without crying; I can't walk on hot asphalt in bare feet as I used to then; I still like to read but my nose is not always in a book.

How I'm still the same -- I know I'll forget many ways, but here are a few: I still love color and beauty and nature -- only now I know Whom to thank.  I still love Christmas (only now I understand what it's all about!) and family traditions.  I still love lakes and still wish I had a cottage on a lake shore.  I still love long walks, music, wildflowers, cooking and baking. 

6. Insert your own random thought here.

If you haven't visited my Christmas blog this month,  you might like to visit for Christmas in July.  I've been busily writing and scheduling posts, and just barely staying ahead of the game.  There are all sorts of ideas that might interest you.  Later in the month I'll be announcing a Christmas in July sale at my Etsy shop, too.

So ends another Hodgepodge.  Happy Wednesday!

Monday, July 09, 2018

A delicious and easy summer side dish


I've been meaning to share this one for a few  weeks: Summer Squash and Potato Saute.  I may have blogged about this recipe in a previous summer.  It's a good summer side dish to know about -- great with fish, chicken, or even a grilled burger or steak.

Recently, though, I tried a spin on this recipe that makes it even easier.  I had purchased some yellow summer squash and zucchini, and had thought to make this side dish with them.  But I also had on hand some microwave-ready potatoes in the Savory Herb flavor from the Little Potato Company.  So I decided to incorporate them into the saute.

I just sauteed the sliced squash in olive oil until crisp-tender, then microwaved the potatoes according to package directions.  When the standing time had elapsed, I stirred the potatoes into the skillet with the squash and heated the mixture through quickly.

It turned out to be quite an inspired idea.  I liked the saute even better with the small whole potatoes than with the sliced red potatoes which the recipe calls for.  And the savory herb flavor was wonderful with the squash.   I have since tried the Garlic Parsley flavor in this recipe and it is also delicious.

Have you tried the products from Little Potato Company?  I had actually never heard of them until a few years ago when I won a giveaway featuring them.  I haven't tried all of the available products, but I can say that the microwave-ready potatoes with seasoning pack are absolutely wonderful. 

Of course, you can make this recipe as originally published.  But if you want a quick and easy side dish that will use up some of that zucchini and summer squash, you may like to try this variation as well.  I don't think you will be disappointed.


Wednesday, July 04, 2018

A blessed and glorious Fourth of July to you!


Lovely photo and graphic by Abby at Little Birdie Blessings
Wishing all of you a most blessed and glorious Fourth of July!

May we all take time to thank the Lord today for the blessings that are ours living in a free country, and to pray for those brave and committed men and women who are serving right now to protect our land and keep our nation free.  May we take a moment to pray for our country, so deeply divided and so much in need of the healing that only God can truly bring.

Do you pray for our nation regularly?  I take some time every Thursday to pray for some specific requests.  (Of course, I pray for America on other days too when the news is particularly bad or there is an urgent need.)

I begin by thanking God for the blessing of living in a free country.  I thank Him for the freedom to worship, the freedom to share my faith with others, the privilege of voting, and the privilege of living in a country with so many natural resources and such natural beauty.    I then pray for our president and other leaders, our men and women in the military, our judges and courts, and my state and governor.

The printed page you see across the bottom of my prayer journal is from a pdf titled How to Pray for America.  It's a free download at Revive Our Hearts, and I have found it very helpful in praying for our country as a whole.  If you are not in the habit of praying for America, may I encourage you to do so?

Later today we will be attending a Fourth of July gathering at the home of friends.  There will be food, fellowship, and very likely fireworks as well.  Hope all of you will also enjoy a blessed day celebrating with family or friends!  Happy Fourth of July!

Monday, July 02, 2018

July goals

In Elko, NV last summer
So it's a new month, and time to set some goals for July:

* Continue with my Bible study of Colossians
* Memorize at least 4 Bible verses and review some older ones.
* Add 4 to 8 pages to my "What Do I Know About My God?" Scripture notebook
* Continue study for Sunday School -- A Woman Who Reflects the Heart of Jesus
* Get to bed by 9 pm each night  
* Limit sugar and red meat.
* Drink enough water each day.
* Walk and/or exercise each day.
* Keep up with Flylady's homemaking zones of the week.
* Do something creative each day
* Post in my Christmas blog daily this month for Christmas in July
* Post in this blog at least twice weekly if possible
* Continue working on several UFO craft projects
* Continue planning for family birthday gifts and crafting any handmade ones
* Continue stocking my Etsy shop and continue selling vintage items
* Write at least 4 encouraging notes to friends and family
* Send lengthy email to a friend
* Call faraway friends to chat
* Learn more about cultured foods and begin making more of them
* Declutter and reorganize my closet
* Declutter and revamp computer room
* Help and encourage my local daughter as I'm able
* Continue to encourage and support my hubby as he works through a pastoral search for our church
* Clean church and set up for fellowship time
* Help with a meal for a college music team at our church for a concert
* Attend a wedding in Maine
* Hopefully meet up with a blog friend while in Maine
* Spend time with faraway friends who are in our state for a few weeks
* Sort out and declutter my dad's house; work on estate
* Possibly plan an overnight with my hubby
* Plan meals with a greater emphasis on healthy eating

JULY'S HEALTHY HABITS:  Drink enough water/exercise/eat healthfully
WORD FOR 2018: Settled
 🍓    🍒     🍉     🍃      🌻     🎈      🍓     🍒     🍉     🍃    🌻    

And here is how June went:
* Continue with my Bible study of Colossians -- done!
* Memorize at least 4 Bible verses and review some older ones -- done!
* Add 4 to 8 pages to my "What Do I Know About My God?" Scripture notebook -- done!
* Continue study for Sunday School -- A Woman Who Reflects the Heart of Jesus -- done!
* Get to bed by 9 pm each night -- not done
* Limit sugar and red meat -- not done consistently
* Drink enough water each day -- not done consistently
* Walk and/or exercise each day -- think I managed about 20-24 times
* Keep up with Flylady's homemaking zones of the week -- not done
* Do something creative each day -- done!
* Post in my Christmas blog at least once or twice this month -- done!
* Work on posts for Christmas in July -- -- done!
* Post in this blog most weekdays if possible -- not done
* Continue working on several UFO craft projects -- done!
* Continue planning for family birthday gifts and crafting any handmade ones -- done!
* Continue stocking my Etsy shop and continue selling vintage items -- done!
* Write at least 4 encouraging notes to friends and family -- done!
* Send lengthy email to a friend -- done!
* Call faraway friends to chat -- done!
* Learn more about cultured foods and begin making more of them -- not done
* Declutter and reorganize my closet -- not done
* Declutter and revamp computer room -- not done
* Help and encourage my local daughter as I'm able -- done!
* Continue to encourage and support my hubby as he works through a pastoral search for our church -- done!
* Clean church and set up for fellowship -- done!
* Sort out and declutter my dad's house; work on estate -- not done consistently
* Possibly plan an overnight with my hubby -- not done
* Plan meals with a greater emphasis on healthy eating -- done!

JUNE'S HEALTHY HABITS:  Drink enough water/exercise/eat healthfully
WORD FOR 2018: Settled