Monday, June 28, 2010


"DESTINY'S STAR" third in the Palins trilogy by Elizabeth Vaughan.

Yay! Vaughan takes us back to the land of Warprize but only after somewhat impatiently wading through the first two books; Dagger-star (Red Gloves and Josiah) and White Star (Evie and Blackhart). Now sometimes publishers get to have their way in naming books or a series of books, same word being "star". Hah! for that. I would love to know how pissed off Jude Devereax was over her "Velvet" series.

Ok back to the books. The main characters in each of these books are strong women and impossible men whose relationship would best be described as yeah IMPOSSIBLE. The third book deals with a strong woman warrior and the slave she purchased for a copper. He had been beaten, starved, has had his tongue cut out but she saw something in him. He turned out to be a damaged story teller and he held wild uncontrollable magic. Together they must travel to the Heart of the Plains to battle with the warrior priests of all the tribes of the plains. This is a battle of cultures as well. The City Dwellers versus the Plains people who are very, very dangerous. They have elaborate ceremonies only during which personal questions may be asked that might otherwise get them killed.

I am also pleased that Vaughan will be writing about Kier and the Xy Princess' son who has his own adventure with an impossible women coming in 2011 "War Cry" Yes!!

Oh and I would have named the first book "Redgloves" and the second book, "Lady in White". The third book should have been named simply "Destiny".

Saturday, June 26, 2010


During the drive home, Phil and I were discussing (politely of course I just liked the picture) the Power Ball lottery. I told him I had purchased a ticket for 20 games and would play a single number.

He said he preferred Quick Pick. Then I wondered out loud what the odds were between a Quick Pick number and my series of 20 plays with one number.

He said that my method would yield more multiple winners for the prize.

Hmmmm. Really.. I did not know that.

So today I Googled "Odds" and was given my choice of a site that tutors in probability. I asked the basic question; where the odds of winning greater with either method or purchase?

So, I got a very polite answer from the tutorial site and they wanted to tell me all about math and science and help me with my homework. I excused myself and searched again.

Next choice was a probability calculator. Calculating the odds involves having a calculator, a ticket and knowing how many tickets will sell, then you divide all of the numbers you have picked by...some damn thing.

So the argument is this, can anyone out there convince me to use a different method to select lottery numbers? Waiving all arguments against purchasing a lottery ticket in the first place.

I purchase 20 tickets using one quick pick number and then I just check the numbers on line every once in a while. So far I have hit a couple 3 and 4 dollar power balls. Not retirement worthy but something to justify firing up the computer.

PS: Phil, the Naval History book weights 7.5 lbs. Husband thinks it is heavier than a gallon of milk.


Husband went shopping yesterday and as he walked into the house he exclaimed,

" I hope I didn't waste my fifty cents!"

He had purchased a ten pound bag of potatoes for fifty cents. The produce manager explained that they were sprouting.

"Put 'em in the fridge I will do something with them, thanks!"

I boiled 5 lbs of potatoes after scrubbing and observed that while they were not exactly sprouting they were going a little soft. I very carefully boiled them for 15 minutes so they wouldn't turn into mush.

I hard boiled four eggs and selected eight potatoes. I let everything oool and then peeled and chopped.

I did not have any onions, but did have some mini dill pickles, I chopped up eight of them. I had an almost empty jar of Mayo, squired in some mustard, sprinkled in salt, pepper, celery seed, red pepper flakes and some garlic. Shook the jar very hard and poured into bowl.

Put lid on ancient but still useful Tupperware bowl and shake vigorously to mix.

See? Worked just fine and saved washing a spoon.

Husband just reported that if I had not told him that there were no onions in there he would not have known.

Now I have to figure out what to do with the remaining boiled potatoes, perhaps some country fries, need onions and red and green Bell peppers for that or maybe a fritatta. OOh I have eggs, and lots of cheese and.....


Gale made sour dough pancakes while I was visiting and I determined to make some myself after we went out for breakfast at the Blue Ribbon Cafe that boasts sour dough hot cakes. Sorry, Blue Ribbon, you folks should just stop advertising because your sour doughs AIN'T SOUR.

I fired up the sourdough it has been almost a month. I neglected to use WARM milk in the mix however I let it set out all night and it got good and bubbly.

The picture below is an example of a PERFECT sour dough pancake just before flipping it over.

Oil the pan very lightly with some veggie oil soaked into a paper towel, swipe the towel in the pan. I have never used teflon pans but they would work well until they becomed abused and scratched up.

Set pan at a bit above medium until a water droplet sizzles, pour in batter and let cook for two to two and a half minutes. Allow bubbles to form AND POP around the edges before flipping.

Flip over and finish cooking 30 seconds to one full minute.

If the pancake browns too much for your taste, turn down the heat a bit.


PS: I make a full "Small" batch and have four left over pancakes, which are going to work with me. I am having sour dough pancakes for lunch and it will drive the other associates nuts. I am evil.

Friday, June 25, 2010

ENCHILADA.......PIE yeah, that's the ticket!

I had to do something with that two pounds of sliced top sirloin and I did not feel like making Tamale some ingredients in my kitchen:

2 pounds half inch dice top sirloin
1/2 very large onion, chopped
1 can jumbo olives,quartered
1 can enchilada sauce
1/2 jar smoked red peppers chopped
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cumin
salt, pepper
half bag sliced Tillamook cheddar cheese.
12 corn tortillas torn into bite sized pieces.

Saute chopped onions in vegetable oil until some browning occurs.
Add meat, stir, cook until a little pink shows in the exposed bits.
Add chopped red peppers.
Stir in enchilada sauce.
Stir in olives.
Stir in cheese.
Stir in tortilla pieces.

Pour into two casseroles and bake in 350 oven for 30 minutes.

The recipe (the one on the enchilada can) did not call for any of the ingredients other than the tortilla's, however there is something about the combination of cumin and cinnamon that I have always liked.

Tastes pretty good. Will taste even better tomorrow.

I also fired up the sour dough starter, will have a couple pancakes tomorrow.
I'll try to take a picture showing the thickness and bubble texture.

Get some rest, it's going to be a busy day tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


Um...are these made out of real fingers?

While in Idaho during Cherry Festival, town was impossible to drive through so we all ran away to The Triangle for dinner, one evening. I decided to have the Finger Steaks and they were delicious...even if the coating had a tendency to fall off.

I got home and decided to google a recipe for finger steaks and found one from The Torch home of the finger steak.

Recipe called for ingredients I did not have
(Of course)
Due to a sadly lacking spice cupboard I ignored the recipe
(Of course)
and used instead marjoram, oregano, garlic powder, salt and pepper
And I also did not have Worcestershire sauce so I substituted Soy Sauce
(..well they are both dark and salty)
Mix 1 and 1/2 cups milk with spices and 1 and 1/2 cups flour.
Mix well,into a thick batter and cool in fridge for 2 hours
(Nope I used it right away)
Cut up 3 lbs of top sirloin into fingers size bits.
Dredge in batter, cook in small batches
in 375 degree hot oil. Allow oil to come back up
to temperature between batches.
I am afraid that I didn't let the oil get hot enough, so
the batter slid right off the first batch.
The second batch fared much better.
The batter fell off quite nicely.
(Of course)

I also cooked a cauliflower bloom.
Steam one whole cauliflower for ten minutes.
Top with a mixture of bread crumbs, butter and shredded parm.
Bake in 350 oven until cheese either melts or gets brown.

Serve with finger steaks and 98 Chenin Blanc

or Grapefruit Tangerine juice. Delish!

I forgot to mention the dipping sauce, it is
supposed to be a mixture of catsup and horseradish.
I used Ranch dressing with a tablespoon of horseradish.

Husband manfully ate a sample and said with a
perfectly straight face that it was delicious.

Unfortunately I have about 2 lbs of uncooked
finger steaks left. So later on this week I
plan to make a very luxurious tamale pie...with OLIVES!!!

Monday, June 21, 2010

BOOKS REPORTS...did she just say Books report?

Uncle Paul gave me a whole box of 76 Zane Gray books, this adds to a great section on Westerns. Now I need to go back and obtain all of the Tony Hillerman books.

Jody had pulled out a lot of books for me by the time I dropped Phil off in Elkton. About 56 books, a lot of self help and management and a great big old toe breaker of a book that probably weighs ten pounds on Naval History. I am weak on histories of any kind and pitiful on self help.

Gale tossed in several books and Richard and Cathy gave me a mystery box sealed with duct tape. When I got home and opened it there were 51 books and the best was a complete set of 13 Terry Goodkind books. Wizards and adventures and stuff.

Also found a lovely selection of Romance that were not currently in the collection.
I now have almost 2000 books. I need about 8000 more unless I get brave and take a lot of trade for credit when I open a store. No immediate plans to open a book store, I am obviously going about this ass backward but I am thinking of a name; Coquille Books or Bookity Boo. Also need a business plan, that encompasses such things as expenses, taxes, rent, insurance, office type stuff. Book shelves, need more book shelves. I have already decided that the lovely collection of reader digest will make a rail. I crack me up.


Doughnut french toast

Looks good,doesn't it?

Too bad it is still soggy in the middle, I slid it back in the pan on low for another 10 minutes,turned off the pan, let it sit for another ten minutes and slid the toast onto a plate and let it age in the oven.

Still soggy.

I watched the Cooking Channel (stay hungry...hmph I'm STILL hungry!)

A lovely British chef named Nigella Lawson was making the Doughnut tasting French toast. Very easy recipe, beat two eggs, stir in half cup whole milk, add 4 teaspoons of vanilla extract. Dip day old white bread, soak on each side for five minutes, cook in frying pan until golden and scorched! Then dip in granulated sugar, viola! Doughnut French toast.

Um, here is what I would strongly recommend. Do not soak the bread for five minutes. Soak for two minutes maximum, fry gently in oil and butter until golden brown and delicious or to however much doneness you wish.

Maybe it is SUPPOSED to be soggy, in which case I will whole heartedly pass in future.


Sunday, June 20, 2010

The trip is finished.

Four of the seven siblings met at the Idaho Veteran's Cemetery at 11 o'clock on the 18th of June, 2010. Aunt Wanda and Uncle Paul came as well as Cathy, Justin and Jennifer. The attendant came and removed the marble cover and we rearranged the furniture. The new marble plate will simply state their names, YOB, YOD and will say "Shorty and Virginia". We chatted a while, enjoyed the sunshine and then left.

The rest of the two or three days were spent visiting as many relatives as possible.
This is a picture of Aunt Ollie.

I dragged her to Letha for a short visit and then we went to the Farmer's Market and oohed and awed over the various produce, then tottered home. Ollie will be 85 this year and she says that when we call her, it just makes her day.

Phil and I drove home today by way of Ontario, Vale, Prairie City etc. We passed the Cow Camp and Phil mentioned that Paul and Ollie actually stayed at the Cow Camp
for a few years after Tater and Fern. I will ask her how she did on the wood stove the next time I call.

Thursday, June 10, 2010


This is my back up plan...always have plan B just in case what ever you purchased WON'T FIT!

I have had this piece of material since Dillingham. I had purchased several lengths of goods thinking I would be doing some sewing...NAH.

So I decided to use this piece of red silk, it has bamboo leaf patterns in black and white and we will pretend it is similar to the pink kimono that she once owned as a young married.

I cut the material into seven pieces and sewed on each layer, one layer for each child. The last layer was sewn into a bag. The gold cording came off a Christmas package from last year. So we are all dressed up now.


A guy wakes up in the ICU unit. He is hooked up to all sorts of intravenous lines,
blood pressure monitors, heart monitors, oxygen mask, machine are beeping, lights are flashing.

He asks the nurse, “Are my testicles black?”

The young nurse is taken aback a bit and stammers,
“I’ll have to ask the head nurse, sir.”

The young nurse finds the floor supervisor and relates the conversation.

Floor supervisor goes into ICU and asks the patient if she can help.

He says “Are my testicles black?”

Floor nurse said, “Just relax, sir, and I will check for you."

She flipped back the blanket and sheet, turned up his hospital gown,
Looked him over and replied,”No sir, your testicles are not black.”

The patient looked at her, reached up and removed his oxygen mask and said,
“Are my test results back?”

Get well, Justin.

Saturday, June 5, 2010


Actually it is a turkey pot pie:

1 bag about 2 cups of frozen turkey stock.
1/2 chopped onion
2 small dice Yukon Gold potatoes
add 1 can chicken stock to cover veggies.

Simmer until potatoes are tender.

Add 1/2 bag frozen peas
Add 1/2 bag frozen cauliflower and broccoli.
Add about 10 fresh chopped mushrooms.

Turn burner off, add 1 cup of corn meal.
Add one beaten egg.

Pour into casserole. Top with pie crust.
Bake at 350 for 60 minutes.

Makes a nice firmly set up "pie" once cool.

I sprinkled in salt, pepper, chili powder, cumin, garlic.

Tasted pretty good.

Pairs well with ..... grapefruit tangerine drink.

SECONDLY, I have also been having a running battle with ANTS! I have tried going green but they just send more. So this morning I purchased 4 Ant cups and put than in strategic places under the sink and kitchen drawers. I am sick and tired of doing the Freaking ant dance of death. I have enough bleach and vinegar on my kitchen floors and cupboards that they SHOULD be pickled. Ewwwwwwwwwwwww.

THIRDLY, I got out the tape measure and both of the urns I have collected are NOT 9 inches tall, they are WAY over that. So my suggestion is this, since Mom sewed stuff for us, I suggest wrapping the package in some very pretty material. Besides I have kind of come to like the two urns and don't really want to turn loose of them.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


After a rather rancorous department meeting, I was quietly asked if I would mind swapping desks to help the peace movement. Lemme think it over and lets take it up with boss lady. Boss Lady had no objections. So we moved stuff and had it all taken care of in about an hour. Good to go,right? Until the other co-worker asked IT for a longer something or other cord. Good lord, you would think we had committed high treason. "Do not move those computers!" er, okay, won't do it again.

Upset someones apple cart something fierce and if we had gone through channels, don't know how long that would have taken. So I have a window now, and I can watch
the construction when it starts.

BOOK UPDATE: Got the last two boxes entered and the grand total is 993. That's not really enough books to open a store, a yard sale maybe. Found some Nancy Drew mysteries and a Ken and Barbie cut-outs book. Wonder what THAT would go for on E-Bay?