Monday, March 2, 2015

Inside Out Ravioli

I actually made a menu list last week!

Well, my best friend and I made one while I drove to the grocery. But it still counts, right?

I used to always do a menu list each week before making my grocery list, but somehow I've fallen off the wagon. The good news is, it does make cooking dinner A LOT easier. One of last week's meals was a favorite recipe I got from a co-worker when I lived in Memphis 25 years ago.

I like this recipe because it's hearty and filling, and it's a one dish meal, which is great for a cold winter night.

1 ½ pounds ground chuck
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz. can tomato sauce
2 10-oz. packages frozen spinach
8 oz. macaroni, or any small pasta
½ cup chopped onion
8 oz. shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 small can tomato paste
1 large jar spaghetti sauce
2 eggs
Parmesan or Mozzarella cheese

Cook spinach according to package directions adding ½ cup extra water. Drain spinach, reserving liquid. Cook macaroni, drain and set aside. Brown beef with garlic and onion. Drain. Add tomato sauce, tomato paste, spaghetti sauce, and ½ cup spinach liquid. Simmer 30 minutes. Beat eggs and add to spinach and grated cheese. Casserole can be layered: pasta, spinach mixture, meat sauce. Top with Parmesan or mozzarella cheese. OR Stir all ingredients together and pour into greased casserole and top with cheese of your choice. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Serves 6-8

Happy eating!

Linking up with Made by You Monday

Saturday, February 28, 2015

:: ten things

a reminder to be grateful for the daily things --

1:: a cup of tea

2:: my sweet Yaya

3:: yarn

4:: books and journals

5:: new projects

6:: comforting food

7:: opportunities

8:: good sleep

9:: happy things

10::  fabric

with thanks to SouleMama

Friday, February 27, 2015


I had a visit with myself yesterday. I went for a massage and opened my mind up to a conversation with just me. No input from anyone else. No worrying about the opinions of others. Just me, checking in with myself and God. 

What do I want? What does God want for me and from me? Forget everyone else and all the shoulds and shouldn'ts. As the masseuse worked out the kinks and knots in my muscles, I felt my mind and heart opening up. Putting aside everything else to really look at what I want. And it felt good.

There weren't any epiphanies, but there was peace. True relaxation, and the realization that I need these visits more often (the massage and the conversation). That means more quiet time. Maybe finding a new place to go for a bit of quiet meditation and journaling. 

I'm going to calendar in regular visits with myself. Because I can't follow God if I don't take time to listen for Him. 

linking up with Five Minute Friday

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Do You Believe in Magic?

When I was a little girl I wanted to be Samantha Stephens. From where I sat in front of the television on Thursday nights, Samantha had a perfect life. She was married to a successful business man, she had a nice house, she got to stay at home all day, her mother visited regularly (and wore REALLY COOL clothes), and, best of all, Samantha could do magic! 

She was a witch, now it would have been better if she'd been a fairy or an angel maybe, but clearly she was a good witch. She had everything I dreamed of including the icing on the cake. Sure she had to take care of the house, but she had magic as her backup plan. If things weren't quite right or the way she'd planned she could always finish up with magic. 

I think "Bewitched" ruined me for homemaking. Then again, television in general may have ruined me for homemaking. No TV home looked like mine did. Everything was always immaculate even when they complained about how messy the house was. (I am not saying my mother was a bad housekeeper. She wasn't. But we did live in the house and had lives and things to do, so it didn't always look like a sitcom set.) Sure, Samantha ran the vacuum, but she looked cute doing it, and the rug looked just as good before she vacuumed as it did after. 

I could use a bit of magic around here today, especially after 2 weeks of winter weather and a major injury that led to an ER visit. Where was my magic that day?

linking up with Writer's Workshop

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY . . . February 24, 2015

Outside my window . . . gray, cloudy skies (again!). We're in the mid-20s and not looking for much improvement. February has definitely staked its claim this year as the grayest month!

I am thinking . . . about ways to improve the mood and energy level in the house.

I am thankful . . . for my warm house and plenty of good food to eat. I know there are so many who are not that lucky/blessed. I'm trying to share what we have at every opportunity.

In the kitchen . . . well last night was pizza, because today is grocery day. I really need to get back into my menus routine as cooking as become haphazard at best!

I am creating . . . my afghan. I'm just about ready for a "Ta-Da" moment. Finished the rows yesterday and working on weaving in the remaining pesky tails today. Big reveal tomorrow, I hope :)

I am going . . . to therapy, the library, and the grocery store today. All definitely on the "needs" list.

I am wondering . . . about springtime. I'm so ready (along with everyone else). Sandals, flip flops, capris, shorts, and bike riding are on my mind right now.

I am reading . . . Rise of the Elgen (Michael Vey, book 2) by Richard Paul Evans. 

I am looking forward to . . . a massage and sauna treatment on Thursday. Hopefully it will lift my mood.

I am hearing . . . the dogs puttering around and a plane flying over my house.

Around the house . . . there are things that could be done, but nothing terribly pressing.

I am praying . . . for improved moods and energy around the house. Also for Lila (2 yo with cancer), and our houseguest who injured his foot last week. Looks as if he'll be having surgery in the near future.

One of my favorite things . . . spring. I am really ready for it this year!

A few plans for the rest of the week . . . errands with dd on Wednesday, the massage on Thursday, and then we will see what the weekend brings.

Here's a picture for thought I am sharing . . .
spring dreams

linking up with The Simple Woman

Monday, February 23, 2015

Cheese Muffins

We've been ice/snowed in for the better part of a week, followed up with torrential rains and winds. Getting out wasn't a reality and when it was, who wanted to? So I've been making do with what's in the house. I actually enjoy this kind of cooking. Kind of survivalist except of course my pantry, refrigerator, and full size freezer might negate my street cred. Anyway, I remembered these muffins my mom used to make, and baked a couple of batches for Room in the Inn last week. My husband was like, "Where are ours?", so this morning I whipped up a batch just because.

A couple of usual disclaimers. First of all, this is a Weight Watchers' recipe from the '70s. I know, right? But they're really good. Secondly, I've eliminated and substituted a bit based on what I had on hand and my dislike of certain prepared foods (e.g., butter flavoring and freeze dried onions). Also, I always keep bread crumbs in my freezer. I grind up the heels and dried out bits and let them accumulate until there's enough to do something with, or if I need bread crumbs for a casserole. I did thaw my crumbs before making these muffins. 

6 slices bread, crumbed (or 2 cups already crumbed)
6 eggs
4 1/2 oz. grated sharp cheddar cheese (or whatever)
1 1/2 oz. grated Parmesan cheese
2 T. butter, melted
1 t. garlic powder (I like the kind with parsley added)
1/4 t. salt
1 T. minced onion (optional, I left it out)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients until fully blended. Spray a 12 cup muffin tin and divide the batter equally into cups. Bake for 15 minutes. Allow to cool a bit and remove from pan. Serve piping hot, or save for later and serve at room temperature. (I've done these in mini muffin tins and served them as appetizers with great success!)

Serving size -- 2 muffins

linking up with Made by You Monday