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Showing posts from January, 2012


Get up from your computer and walk to the other side of the room. Watch her eyes follow you. She dares you to look away.

Food for Thought

“Nobody grows old by merely living a number of years. People grow old by deserting their ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up wrinkles the soul. ”

Douglas MacArthur (1880-1964); American general and field marshal Thanks, for this quote.

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Whole Wheat Oatmeal Bars

We're making things with chocolate again....although I stipulate that this recipe actually has some redeeming qualities to go along with all those calories.

This recipe actually had an earlier version that was good, but rather pedestrian. As you can see above, they were rather flat and uninspired. They tasted good, but I wouldn't make them again.

My new version is much heartier. Both were made in a 13 X 9 pan. The difference is that this recipe had twice the flour and oatmeal. Hence the greater density. The other difference, which I think really added to the bar's texture is the use of whole wheat flour instead of white flour. The whole wheat pairs very nicely with the sturdy oatmeal, as well as the addition of butterscotch chips mixed in with the chocolate chips. And finally, there's peanut butter, which makes everything taste better.

Here's the recipe:

1 cup vegetable shortening

1 cup dark brown sugar

1 Tablespoon vanilla

2 large eggs

1 1/4 cups peanut butter

2 c…

Mac and Cheese Inspired by Country Living Magazine

Last year I went through some sort of compulsive subscription frenzy brought on by Amazon's $5 magazine sale at Christmas and ordered about a dozen other magazines, all of which I've since let expire. This year, I'm just keeping the core.

My favorite magazines are: Southern Living, Country Living, Better Homes and Gardens, Good Housekeeping, and Oprah (of course).  These are my tried and true, been subscribing to them for a hundred years and will still be subscribing to them one hundred years from today.  (Thanks to sister-in-law Kathy for sponsoring my Better Homes and Garden subscription for the past two years).

As I flip through these magazines each month, I generally find inspiration for a new dish that I want to try. This month it was Country Living's Macaroni and Gruyere Cheese. Would you believe that I've never made mac and cheese before? I know. Strange.

Here's my version of it, in which I changed up some ingredients to use what I had on hand, as well …

Our Book Cover Finalists are Here!

Window Cover

White Flower Cover

Black Flower Cover

I love them all, but only one can be chosen.

Which best captures your interest as a reader?

Which best conveys a World War II story about two Hungarian sisters trying to save their abandoned niece from the Nazis?

Help Me Choose a New Cover for My Novel

I have completely revised my first novel, MRS. TUESDAY'S DEPARTURE. Turns out that was the easy part. I've spent the last few days tormenting my friends and family trying to decide on a new cover for the book which will be coming out as an ebook and in paperback.
Now I'm appealing to you.
Which is your favorite?

No. 1

No. 2

No. 3

No. 4

No. 5

No. 6

No. 7

No. 8
And just in case you're one of those sticklers who actually want to know what the book is about before's a brief synopsis:
Faith is the evidence of things not seen...
Hungary's fragile alliance with Germany kept Natalie and her family out of harm's way for most of the war, but as the F├╝hrer's desperation grows during the waning years of the conflict, so does the threat to anyone in its path. Natalie's sister, Ilona, married a Jewish man, putting both her and her young daughter, Mila, in peril. Natalie is hiding all of them, including her schizophrenic twin, Anna, under her roof, …

The Infamous Neiman Marcus $250 Chocolate Chip Cookie: My Version

The week before Christmas I was reading Jane Green’s wonderful novel, Promises to Keep. At the end of each chapter she provided a recipe that was relevant to the story. One recipe was a copy of the infamous Neiman Marcus ‘$250 cookie’, which we all know by now is an urban legend that is actually several decades old and has traveled as far as South Africa in its origins. That said, what intrigued me about the recipe was the use of ground oatmeal with the regular flour. I was also stunned by the enormous size of the batter the recipe would produce, given that it called for a total of nine cups of ground oatmeal/flour to a relatively lower proportion of butter in the traditional Tollhouse recipe. Since I wanted to send cookies to friends and family for Christmas, I decided to give the recipe a try with some tweaks on my part. My changes are the addition of the three different types of chocolate for the chips, a teaspoon more vanilla than the original recipe, and the use of sea salt. Urban l…

Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!

On this first day of 2012, I resolve to do and be better than I did in 2011 with the intention that I will progress closer to being the person I was created to be.

Please take a moment to watch this video. It not only makes me incredibly happy, it reminds me that we are capable of so much more than we ever imagined. If we'll only get out there and try.

God bless you and keep you throughout the coming year. May all your resolutions be fulfilled.