Friday, November 29, 2019


Yesterday I cooked the turkey carcass on low heat from the after meal clean-up, through the night, until noon today. What's for lunch? A big bowl of super rich turkey broth with pilot crackers. So good after all the overindulging yesterday. And the biggest payoff is 3 quarts of broth for the freezer.
Happy loosening the belt day!

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Just For Today

Thankful today and everyday for all the blessing in my life, including a wonderful group of blogging friends.  Wishing each and every one of you a Happy Thanksgiving or Happy Thursday (depending on your location) Y'all are the best! Now get off the computer and go eat some turkey!

Sunday, November 24, 2019

It's That Time Again

Once again I am coordinating a Holiday Card swap among our blogging community. If you would like to be included please email me at (This is the email I use only for the  card exchange each year)

The rules are pretty simple. You will mail three cards to other bloggers and will receive 3 cards. You can make your own or buy them or do whatever you wish as long as you extend the greetings. This is open to all of you since I sincerely believe the world needs a little more kindness right now.

If you are interested just let me know. Leave your name, blog name (or blog reader name) and a mailing address. I will let you know who you are to send the cards to, and hopefully we can all enjoy the interaction.


Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Hark, How the Bass!?!

A friend of Son3's is releasing a Christmas Album on December 6. I personally have no idea why they are still called albums. I am old enough that I have a decent collection of the old vinyl albums, complete with scratch induced white noise and pops. Those are albums! Digital releases are something entirely different in my way of thinking. Nonetheless, Dan Chmielinski is a very talented bass player and a sincerely nice guy. Follow the link which will lead to a sample song link.  I ordered a copy since I love Christmas music and am partial to jazz. Give it a listen. I don't think you will be disappointed, and if you feel inclined order, and support young musicians.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Whatsa Been Happening

As usual I make some sort of meal plan for the week. Somedays we have a variation of the planned meal and some days we go in a very different direction. This was no different!

Last week I decided to get everything I had planned, out of the freezer and put into the meat drawer of the refrigerator on Monday. It is a good thing I did! The smaller packages thawed by Wednesday, but the pork tenderloin is still icy this morning. I guess the meat drawer might be a little too cold.

These were the possible meals:

And these were the actual meals we ate:

Monday:Things happened and as usual I started the day with Mom. I don't think there was anything eventful but I honestly don't remember.
Stuffed acorn squash, coleslaw, stewed apples (TheHub) keto cornbread

Tuesday: Ditto for Tuesday. Additionally I rounded up all the Christmas presents I have bought throughout the year and got everything nicely wrapped and tagged. I still have a more shopping to to get done, but it is nice to have this much ready.
Smoked brisket, broccoli and cauliflower medley, mashed potatoes (TheHub)

Wednesday: I start the day out at Mom's, then go to class every Wednesday. Next I go to the store and buy whatever she needs for the week. It was kind of cool so I changed plans from the intended taco salad.
Taco soup

Thursday: Had a longer than normal Dr. appointment with Mom. She had to have a protracted EEG and when the technician told us she would be in the test for about 1 1/2 hours, T, her daytime caregiver and I went to Aldi and wandered around for almost an hour. We both might have bought several things from their Aisle of Shame. After I got Mom back home I ran a few more errands. Meanwhile TheHub called and suggested we go to the wine tasting at ThePig then to The Red Pearl for dinner. I am never going to argue with a man who wants to take me to dinner.
Out to eat  (basil chicken, with sides of spinach and mushrooms

Friday: It was a day like most days!
Mississippi chicken over noodles (TheHub) or caulirice, cucumber slices, tomato wedges

Saturday: Ball game day here! TheHub and I got up and got dressed for game day. I was nice and made him a huge breakfast
Leftover chili with corn chips (TheHub), turkey, coleslaw, pepper slices and pickles (me)

Sunday: We went to see "Midway" and afterward we I did not really want to cook
Doggie bag from Chinese restaurant (TheHub) Repeat of Saturday night (me)

Now on to meal possibilities for this week ( in no particular order):

1. Pork tenderloin, caulitato salad, collard greens, keto cornbread
2. Hot dogs, tater tots (TheHub) coleslaw
3. Chicken in mustard cream sauce, tossed salad, caulimash, brussels sprouts
4. TheHub is on his own. I am having a little surgical procedure Thursday and he can get whatever he wants. Since I can't eat until afterward I am saying to Hell with keto for the day and having ice cream.
5. Vegetable beef soup with keto cornbread
6. Spaghetti sauce over noodles or zoodles, french bread or keto rolls, tossed salad
7.  Grilled cheese (TheHub) and leftover soup with salad (me)

Hope everyone has a wonderful week, doing whatever makes your week wonderful!

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Krispy Kreme Keto Knockoff

Sunday we went to see Motherless Brooklyn. It was only showing at the theater we like to use the most at one time on Sunday, 12:10, so we went prior to lunch. Popcorn is NOT keto and I knew I would not be eating it and TheHub did not want that much for just himself. By the time the movie was over  we were getting hungry and the vegetable soup in the fridge was calling our names. I personally love it when all I have to do is ladle and nuke something. It was close to four when we ate lunch so we decided to skip dinner__almost.

I had been craving something sweet and, though he is not keto, TheHub is watching his sugars also. I kept seeing this recipe for keto Krispy Kreme doughnuts and thought I would give them a try. I never think any keto  dessert recipe is going to taste exactly like it is supposed to, but occasionally they do taste pretty good, even though they are nothing like the original. This was one of those very pleasant surprises.

The doughnut
2 tablespoons coconut flour
6 tablespoons almond flour
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons monkfruit sweetener
2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
2 beaten eggs

Preheat oven to 350. Mix all the dry ingredients well, add the eggs and the coconut oil and stir like mad. The mixture will be thick. Pack it into a pastry bag or a zip lock bag with one corned snipped off. Squeeze the dough into a doughnut pan. (I imagine squeezing it onto a parchment lined cookie sheet in a doughnut shape would work as well) and bake for about 16 minutes. This makes 4 doughnuts.

The glaze
1/4 cup monkfruit sweetener
1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons coconut oil

Begin this when the doughnuts go into the oven. In a shallow pan mix the monkfruit sweetener and the water. Cook on medium for a minute or two stirring constantly then add the coconut oil. Continue stirring and lower the heat to medium low. When you take the doughnuts out of the oven remove the glaze from the heat but keep stirring. As soon as the doughnuts can be handled (but while they are still very warm) dip them in the glaze mixture (top and bottom). Set on a cookie sheet to dry and repeat with the remaining doughnuts.

Instead of dinner, we each had a doughnut and coffee (me) diet drink (TheHub). We won't make this a habit, but it is nice to know it satisfied the yearning for a dessert. I have all the weird flavorings that came in the collection when I bought the cornbread extract, so next I might try blueberry doughnuts, or pumpkin spice, or even carrot cake.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Eating, Eating, Eating

This is what I had decided might be our meal possibilities for the week. As usual what I thought might happen and what actually did were two entirely different things, but it was all good and we were fed every night.

1. Spaghetti, salad, garlic bread or keto roll
2. Smoked sausage, cabbage, new potatoes (TheHub)
3. Veggie soup, keto cornbread
4. Mississippi chicken, coleslaw,  squash casserole
5. Stuffed bell peppers, pear and kale salad
6. Seared scallops, tossed salad, new potatoes
7. Out to eat at our favorite local restaurant (delayed anniversary celebration, the earliest reservations we could get) Absolutely will not be a Keto meal and this is why!
Monday: I spent the entire morning with Mom and My Beloved Sister, who took a day of vacation to go with me, to Mom's new neurologist. Her former one had the unmitigated gall to die right before her scheduled 3 month appointment, which meant we had to find a new one.  I  found someone Mom agreed to see and it took 3 months to get a "new patient" visit. In addition to filling out an insane amount of new patient paperwork, she had/has to go through a myriad of tests that we had already done with the previous neurologist.  I have no idea why her records were sent from the former doc to the current one if they were going to be totally disregarded. Anyway Mom's appointments for the month of November through December seem to be piling up.
After the protracted office visit, I had to go get groceries for Mom along with a few other things she needed, then run a few errands of my own. I got home shortly before TheHub was leaving work and needed a quick meal. Since I am drowning in cabbage had plenty of produce and some sausage in the fridge I managed to make our favorite 15 minute meal.
Smoked sausage with cabbage, new potatoes (TheHub)

Tuesday: Had my usual morning with Mom, went shopping (again for her) come home and treated myself to a little reading time. Then it was time to put on a very happy face and some grown up clothes for our  delayed anniversary celebration. Though this looks like a lot, TheHub and I split everything except drinks.
Martinis, farm lettuces, baked grits, grilled duck breast (me) grilled snapper (TheHub) basque cake, and coffee (The only thing keto was the coffee. Worth. Every. Bite.)

Wednesday: I am not even sure what happened. I know I began the day at Mom's because I start every day going there. I have class on Wednesday so I went there too. Afterward I ran to a different town about 12 miles south of my burb mainly because they have the biggest Walmart in the metro area and I have been looking all over creation for a small crewneck white sweatshirt  for Mom. It must also feel perfect to the touch, even though I am a little uncertain what perfect to the touch feels like) No dice with that search,  but I could find every other size. So I struck out and then headed for Aldi to buy Mom a poncho they had advertised. When we were at the doc's earlier in the week Mom froze and I thought the flannel poncho would be a good thing for us to have every time we go to any doctor's appointments. She freezes every time and one less thing that upsets her is a bonus for me.  I am seriously impressed with my purchasing ability because this is 2 times in the past 2 months that I have bought something for her and  she actually found nothing wrong with either of tham. Score! Additionally I got home early enough to actually cook.
Stuffed bell peppers, squash casserole, coleslaw, stewed apples (TheHub)

Thursday: The Misfit box arrived this afternoon. It was by far the best one yet, but I am still on the fence about continuing it or not. I think I might like buying what I want when I want it better than just getting random produce then having to incorporate it into meals. Keto and apples are not friends, and TheHub only likes Honeycrisp apples. I have cooked apples with the ones from the prior boxes and today 3 more came. I might make an apple cake to take to Mom's just to get rid of them. I made pear butter to use the pears, and am looking for a way to use 4 pomegranates. Today 2 more large squash came, along with another head of cabbage. It is a lovely head of cabbage but I still had 1/2 head in the fridge from last time. Lots of veggies to use with little or no plan to use them only meant one thing.
Vegetable beef soup. french bread or keto rolls

Friday: I honestly have no idea what happened Friday other than we ended the day with  an early dinner before I put on flannel pj's and we settled in to a home date night watching a very strange movie with Amazon Prime.
Spaghetti sauce over pasta or keto bread ( no zucchini for zoodles__oops!) tossed salad.

Saturday: Ball game day! Roll Tide (They lost and LSU won but it was a good game to watch) DIL2 and Shelby the dog were here with me having a watch party while TheHub and Son2 went to the game. They came home after the game and we ate together before they went home to their house.
Chili, green chili, charcuterie platter 

Sunday: For the first time this week I had a Mom free day. It was wonderful! TheHub and I went to see Motherless Brooklyn and it might have been Edward Norton's finest performance. It is kind of a film noir gumshoe detective tale but was so well played. Also there was a jazz band playing in a couple of scenes and I looked at TheHub and asked if that was Russell Hall on bass, a friend of Son3's. I stayed and watched the credits and lo and behold it was.
Because we went to an early movie we did not eat lunch and came home after the movie to eat lunch/supper combo meal.
Leftover veggie soup and french bread or not.

And now on to possibilities for the upcoming week:

1. Smoked beef brisket (from the freezer) green beans, mashed cauliflower, rolls or keto rolls
2. Mississippi chicken (from the freezer), rice or caulirice, tomato cuke and onion salad
3. Taco salad, corn chips (or not)
4. Seared scallops, tossed salad, roasted veggies, new potatoes
5. Stuffed acorn squash, coleslaw, stewed apples
6. Out to eat. We seem to go at east once a week so I might as well include it.
7. Roasted pork tenderloin, collard greens,  caulitato salad keto cornbread

         I thought I might include a little snippet of Russell Hall on bass for your listening pleasure

                 Hope you all have a wonderful week filled with fun, food, and fellowship.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

This Week in Chow Town

These were the meal possibilities I thought might happen this past week. I do like calling them possibilities rather than a plan, because if they are just possibilities I don't feel like a failure when it changes.

1. Steak, new potatoes, tossed salad, grilled squash
2. White bbq chicken, caulitato salad, collards, keto or regular rolls
3. Veggie soup keto corn bread,
4. Hot dogs, tater tots (or not) coleslaw (We have had this every Halloween for the past 30+ years)
5. Chili, keto corn bread, some side vegetable tbd
6. Mississippi chicken over mashed potatoes or caulimash, tossed salad
7. Hamburgers, tater tots (or not) all the fixings that go with burgers.

Monday: Was up early to deal with Mom and then had a couple of appointments. I came home, did a few minor things (like laundry) then went back to see Mom again. TheHub called while I was sitting across the room from Mom watching her glare at me  visiting with Mom and suggested we cook something out since it was a gorgeous night. Win!
Steak, new potatoes (TheHub) caulirice (me) tossed salad, baguette (TheHub)

Tuesday: Morning with Mom who was sound asleep until the daytime caregiver came. Best. Morning. Ever.
Afterward I had to take care of some business, then my car veered into Ulta's parking lot. I had no choice but to get out and look at products I have absolutely no idea how to use what is new in the world of makeup. I did buy a set of false eyelashes (because one of the caregivers told me I have crappy eyelashes and need to wear them) and some black lipstick (Halloween). I must be some sort of peasant because I have no idea why anyone would need most of the products in the store. But then most people who wear makeup probably spend more than 5 minutes applying it. I tried to put on the eyelashes and afterward I thought my own nubby lashes were better than what looked like wooly caterpillars crawling across my eyelid about 1/8 inch above my lash line. Some of us just aren't meant to be beauties!
Forgot to allow for book club this week on the meal plan. Glad TheHub had leftovers.
Dinner out with gal pals. We did not mention the book once!

Wednesday: My Beloved Sister took the day off and went to Mom's for the gap this morning. Not having to go there for the morning was sheer bliss. In fact I did not go there once on Wednesday and the earth continued its orbit, though Mom called me (twice) to let me know I did not come see her. Maybe it was better when she did not remember how to use the phone. I used the day to do a little self care and it was wonderful. I had planned on throwing chicken on the grill, but the downpour of Biblical proportions  rain made it impossible. Dinner was mainly heating things I had cooked previously and frozen.
Sautéed chicken thighs with mushrooms, collard greens, keto mac and cheese (mac free made with cauliflower instead)

Thursday: Halloween! Had to get my spooky on and be ready for the treat or treat brigade. TheHub and I had the same meal we have every single year on Halloween night. It started when our older sons were young and needed to eat before they headed out for the Halloween candy tour. We have not had little kids in a long time, but we still eat our holiday meal like we always did.
Hot dogs (bun optional) with all the fixings, coleslaw, baked beans (TheHub)

Friday: Friday was a normal day, starting with going to Mom's in the morning, heading home and doing some routine chores, including getting rid of Halloween decor and gussying the foyer and dining room with a touch of Thanksgiving.

We have only been to the lake place two times since April and only stayed overnight once.  We needed to check on a few things and start the winterizing process so TheHub and I decided to go to the lake for the night. We thought spaghetti would be a good meal because I could make the sauce in advance, pack it, the fixings for a salad, then cook the pasta when we got to the lake. It would be virtually no effort, we could eat quickly then enjoy the sunset over the lake while sitting on the porch So I made it, and we headed to the lake.

Once we opened the door I noticed an unpleasant smell. Then I walked into the kitchen and found a couple of baskets on the floor. Though unusual, I could very well have left them unbalanced on the counter. We do have one lake neighbor with an incredible sound system on his boat and it does vibrate the house sometimes. It could have easily knocked them off. No worries, until I walked to the sink to put water in the pot for spaghetti. Hmmmm, glass was everywhere, the Moscow mule cups that live in the window sill were in the sink, along with my watercolor brushes that live in a glass jar next to the cups. Crap I knew then a critter had been in the house and I figured it was not a little field mouse. We started looking around the cabin and found a dead smelly squirrel in TheHub's "relaxing" chair. Fortunately it had not been dead long enough to start decomposing, however the stench might have killed the chair. After removing the critter we had to run into town for some cleaning supplies. While we were out shopping we decided the best thing to do was walk around in the night air for a minute to get the smell out of our brains (thank you bbq joint that was cooking pork over a hickory pit). Neither of us wanted to eat in the still smelly house so we went out to eat.

When we got back to the cabin we cleaned the upholstery then removed the offending chair to the screened porch.  Time will tell if it is a keeper or if we need to get rid of it, but at least it can not continue to foul the house. After removing it the smell was gone, so we did go ahead and spend the night, but left shortly after waking.
Mediterranean food in a small sit down place, chicken shawarma for me, kabob pita for TheHub  (No way we were taking it back to the lake place to eat)

Saturday: As I have said before, we are big fans of college football, particularly the SEC, and specifically Alabama (Roll Tide). There were some really good games Saturday even though Alabama was not playing. Since we left the lake early we thought we would go to the Russian food festival, eat and then get back in time to watch most of the Georgia/ Florida game on tv. The festival is at a Russian Orthodox  church in Brookside Alabama. It is a small town about 10 miles northwest of Birmingham in what was once a coal mining community. It seems that the town, at one time, was predominately a Slovak community (very much an oddity for Alabama, since most of the early miners were Irish or Welsh) . The Church is still active in the community, (relatives of the original occupants maybe?) and puts this festival on yearly. I had never even heard of it until last year and we could not make it then, so we set out to have a little ethnic treat.  Yep, us and every other person in Alabama. We parked a couple of blocks away and got in line very near to where we parked. After 45 minutes we had moved approximately 1/2 of a block with about 200+ people in line ahead of us. After timing how long it took for each person to get through the doors (no  idea how long the line was from the door to the food) we decided to bail. We calculated at the rate it was moving it would take us at least an additional hour just to get up the stairs and through the door.

While waiting we talked with a lovely young couple in line ahead of us about the various food festivals in our area. We mentioned how much we enjoyed the Brazilian festival and it turns out the man was from Brazil and had helped with the festival. He told us the Brazilian way of grilling a steak and even told us where and what kind of salt to buy. On the way home we stopped at a Latin super store to get bbq salt.  I had been there several times but it was a first for TheHub. We wandered around it for a while and bought much more than the salt. I think what I like best about this particular market is the way they have things organized. Different aisles have specific foods from different countries, and the produce sections is nothing like, Aldi, The Pig or Publix. For someone like me it was almost like being a kid in a candy store.  If the ball game had not already started, or if I were alone, I would have browsed the store for a couple of hours.

Because we did not get the much awaited meal, and were hungry after seeing all the different foods at Mi Pueblo, we stopped at Arby's near our house. What a let down after anticipating a delicious lunch.
It was later when we ate and we decided to skip a traditional dinner and watch the Auburn Ole Miss game while we snacked.
Roasted peanuts, cheese, chips (TheHub), Halloween candy (TheHub) Keto chocolate cup (not TheHub)

Sunday: Daylight savings time is in the rear view mirror and the nights are getting dark much to early for me. I do not really like to eat before dark, but with it getting dark so early it feels like the nights last forever and makes me want to eat earlier. The conundrum of it, is I generally do not start thinking of cooking until after 6, but now we will be eating about that time.  I will have to either start dinner earlier or have everything done in advance so I just have to rewarm and serve. I think I will opt for rewarming and serving since I never know what Mom the day will demand. Sunday was as good a day as any to do some massive prepping. 
Chili, keto corn muffins

I mentioned last week, I have subscribed to the Misfit boxes. It is a supposed rescue mission for odd shaped produce that is perfect except for its appearance. I have received 2 boxes now and am unimpressed and left with produce that I am allergic to or have no use for. (Keto and an abundance of fruit do not go hand in hand) Instead of throwing it away (minus the eggplant which I have a severe allergy to even though I love it, so I did toss that) I am having to do a lot of processing and freezing various fruits. I was produce heavy before the last box was delivered and now I am trying my best to incorporate most into my meals. It might not be something I want to continue during the winter. I will give it one more delivery and then I believe I will have a better feel for whether it is worth my time and money or not. Meanwhile I am adding celery to everything and making pear butter tomorrow!

Meal possibilities for the coming week:
1 Spaghetti, salad, garlic bread or keto roll
2. Smoked sausage, cabbage, new potatoes (TheHub)
3. Veggie soup, keto cornbread
4. Mississippi chicken, coleslaw,  squash casserole
5. Stuffed bell peppers, pear and kale salad
6. Seared scallops, tossed salad, new potatoes
7. Out to eat at our favorite local restaurant (delayed anniversary celebration, the earliest reservations we could get) Absolutely will not be a Keto meal and this is why!