Friday, December 31, 2010


Well it's Friday at 2:36 a.m. on New Years Eve morning. I and my neighbor have been making my 'famous dip.' She is havin g a big New Years Eve bash tonight and many of the Vegas entertainers who take tonight off will be there. I am having a small group in as well, some very close friends. I am lucky enough to be known for my cooking and baking and so many come to me for different recipes. So I have decided to give you all my recipe for "ha-cha-cha dip." I serve it with flour tortilla chips, or you can use corn chips as well.


2 cans refried beans
2 nice size tomatoes
1 bunch of green onions
1 package Hidden Valley Ranch mix
1 container sour cream
1 can pit free black olives
2 tbls. hot sauce (optional)
1/2 cup shredded mexican cheese mix


In a 6x9 pan smear refried beans on the bottom
In a bowl mix sour cream & ranch mix. Mix thoroughly, then spread onto the refried beans. Set aside!
Finely chop tomatoes, olives and onions in a separate bowl make sure to use the green of the onions. Mix well with hot sauce if using it.
Once mixture of veges is well mixed spread it evenly on top of Ranch mix.
Now sprinkle the shredded cheese on top of veges.
Wrap with clear wrap and place pan in fridge until cold, usually an hour or two.
Serve with Tortilla chips...

This is a pretty easy recipe and tastes so good there is never any left.

The police in Vegas are already patroling the streets on and around the strip and some won't get off shift until 6.00 a.m. New Years Day. I don't envy them or their familys. The men who set off the fireworks have been here for weeks on the rooftops where the displays are shot from, and it promises to be quite a show as usual. I can see the strip which is 5 miles uphill from my driveway and get a good show without any of the crowds piled in like sardines.

Well the new year is nearly upon us and I hope it is a better year for us all than 2010 was. I wish you all a very HAPPY NEW YEAR. I hope to see you all still following my blog next year!

Friday, December 24, 2010

My wish is for a. . .


to all of my BLOG readers and followers. . .

Friday, December 17, 2010


Those of you who read my blog and know me well know that my mother is still very much alive, 90 years old , lives in Indiana in a lovely Senior Community. Mother still drives, cooks, bakes for her friends, shops, goes out socially, and even babysits my Aunt, her 91 year old sister that lives with her son & DIL, when they go somewhere too hard to take her. The two sisters have a pajama party of sorts, make cookies, eat and play Bunco. It does the heart good to know they have such fun together still.

My Aunt, now a widow had three children, one daughter and two sons. Her family always seemed quite close and never moved from Indiana. After my Uncle passed away one son took his mother in where she is treated with the greatest respect and love. They all meet every Christmas Eve at one brothers home and celebrate together with all the other relatives in town.

My mother's question to me was: why don't my children get along with one another?
All except my son have moved away from Indiana to far away places. She wishes just once before she dies we could all be together in a loving way. Unfortunately my mother worked from the time I can remember. She worked from 3:00 in the afternoon until 10:00 p.m. at night. I would get home from school to serve dinner to my two sibblings that mother had pretty much prepared before she went to work. My dad worked three shifts in the Steel Mill, so was there only a part of the time. As trhe eldest, I became babysitter, missed after school activities and resented my sibblings because of it. They in turn resented me for being able to boss them around as they put it. But even worse; my parents hated one another, my mother was verbally abused, and my father was sick in the head with jealously, for no reason. We kids grew up with few expressions of love. None ever between our parents. I believe most children learn from what they are shown by their parents. Coldness breeds coldness, and then my other two sibblings (sisters) came so late in life. One nine years after the three of us, (brother, me & my sister) then another when I was married and pregnant. My baby sister was born four months after my own son. I never really knew her and we are basically still strangers. I moved away to Illinois then Las Vegas, my two younger sisters married and moved to Colorado. My one sister stayed in Indiana but passed away early in her life from complications from MS. My brother has Epilepsy and lived all his life with my mother until he recently got his own apartment in a building next to my mother. They have their own places but she still has to drive him everywhere and keeps a close eye on him. So my answer to my mother is that children mostly imitate what they see, and feel growing up. I longed to be closer to my mother like my girlfriends were with their moms but my mother HAD TO WORK. . .

The strange thing is I did exactly the same thing to my own two sons, work, work and work even more and now I am reeping what I have sewn, alone on the holidays; my sons in the same town but busy elsewhere. So you see history repeats itself and that is not always a good thing. Would my sons or sibblings be any different if circumstances had been different? I don't know, and guess I never will. . .


Friday, December 10, 2010


Here are some Surprising Facts about MISTLETOE. . .

I'm sure at one time or another in your life you either kissed someone or were kissed under the mistletoe! Well just so you know Mistletoe is much more than a cluster of berries that inspires the courage to kiss. Mistletoe is actually a parasite, yep it's true! It steals the nutrients it needs from the tree it grows on. It's berries can cause illiness, so be sure to treat real mistletoe you come in contact with with caution. Here are some other little known facts about mistletoe:

There are two types of mistletoe. The one we see most often around the holidays is native to North America and grows on trees in many parts of the U.S. The other type is of European origin.

A mistletoe infestation can kill the host tree. Some tree species though, seem to be resistant to the so-called charisma of this partial parasite. Bradford flowering pears, sycamores, redwoods, and cedar trees are rarely infested.

Druids used mistletoe as a charm. It was believed to offer protection from evil and was used to create cures called potions. In modern times midtletoe has been promoted as a folk cure for cancer. However, numerous studies have found no support for its efficacy against the disease.

The tradition of kissing beneath the mistletoe may arise from Norse mythology. Count your kisses because legend has it, you can steal only so many kisses beneath the mistletoe. For every smooch, you're suppose to remove one berry. Once all berries are gone so is the opportunity to pucker up. . .

Saturday, December 4, 2010


The New Year is right around the corner. Sure you could resolve to lose a few pounds or be better about saving money, or starting an exercise regime. This year though, why not try something completely different, something out of the ordinary for you. Here are some alternative resolutions:

Check out restaurants, parks, museums and other attractions in your area you've never visited.

Can't afford a trip to a far off locale? Read a book set in the country of your dreams. Always read the same type of books? Change, be different, if you love romance novels, try a good mystery. If you usually read fiction check out a best selling novel.

Get out and sample new unusual cuisines or vow to cook one new recipe each week.

Seasoned volunteers say their work is even more beneficial to them than the recipients of their time and labor.

Taking time to relax isn't lazy - you're merely recharging ytour battery.

Phones and social networking sites are great for connecting with friends far and wide, but nothing can replace a face to face conversation

Whether it's a foreign language or dance steps or computer skills, and you'll end the new year mentally richer.

Next week I am going to offer a quiz on Mistletoe. Lets see how much we actually know!!!