Friday, December 29, 2017

I Feel Pretty: Funny Friday

Today’s post is this month’s Funny Friday, a regular feature published on the last Friday of every month. Funny Friday is a collaborative project. Each month one of the participants submits a picture, then we all write 5 captions or thoughts inspired by that month’s picture. Links to the other bloggers’ posts are below, click on them and see what they’ve come up with. I hope we bring a smile to your face as you start your weekend.

Funny Friday:a multi-blogger challenge, one picture, five Captions,  | | #MyGraphics

 Here’s today’s picture. It was submitted by Jules of The Bergham Chronicles.

Funny Friday, a multi-blogger picture captioning challenge. Picture by Jules of The Bergham Chronicles | Featured on | #funny #laugh

1. Little girl, looking into the camera: Yes, folks, just one turn on my magic machine and you too can look like this. Get in line, and have your $10 ready.

2. Workout lady to the little girl: Are you photo-bombing my work out video?
Little girl: Well, this is a public park. But I'll be happy to move for the low low price of twenty bucks.
Workout lady to the little girl: Does your mom know where you are?
Little girl: Who do you think sent me here?

3. Little girl at the park (singing at the top of her lungs): I feel pretty, oh so pretty, I feel pretty and witty and bright . . .
Lady working out (singing to herself): I feel sweaty, oh so sweaty, I feel sweaty and gritty and tight . . .

4. Little girl to her mom (who's working out): Hey Mom, I'm almost done playing here. I have a great idea, why don't we go get donuts?
Mom (under her breath): I have a great idea, why don't I try to keep all these swear words from leaking from my head and out of my mouth?

5. Little girl to her mom (who's working out): I'm getting hot mom, can you get me my juice box. And my hat. Oh, and my sunglasses?
Mom: Kinda busy here honey, it's all on that picnic table over to your left. 
Little girl: But I'm busy too. I'm posing.
Mom (gritting her teeth): Ask Dad.
Little girl: But Dad's busy too, he's taking my picture.

And now for something yummy, an appetizer perfect for New Year's Eve: 

Vegetable Bites, vegetables are steamed, chopped, breaded and pan fried for a delicious appetizer bite | Recipe developed by | #recipe #appetizer
Vegetable Bites

Click on the links below and let some other bloggers make you smile:

Bookworm in the Kitchen
    Cognitive Script 
The Bergham Chronicles
Southern Belle Charm

Baking In A Tornado signature/logo | | #MyGraphics

Vegetable Bites

Ingredients (makes about 18):
2 1/2 cups steamed, finely chopped broccoli and cauliflower florets
2 green onions, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup flour
3 TBSP olive oil, divided
2 TBSP butter, divided
3/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs

OPT: sour cream or ricotta cheese for serving

*Mix together the chopped broccoli and cauliflower, green onions, salt, pepper and eggs. Mix in the sharp cheddar and flour.
*NOTE: You can make this right away, but I find it easier to work with if you refrigerate this mixture from a few hours to overnight before frying.
*Place the seasoned bread crumbs into a plastic bag. Form the vegetable mixture into about 1 inch balls with your hands. Roll in the bread crumbs.
*Heat 2 TBSP of the olive oil and 1 TBSP of the butter in a large saute pan over medium heat until hot. Place the vegetable balls, about 9 at a time, into the pan. Using a spatula, flatten.
*Once they start to brown, lower the heat to medium and cook until the bottoms are browned. Gently flip over, fry the other side until browned, then remove to drain on a paper towel. Repeat with the remaining vegetable balls. You may need to add the remaining 1 TBSP olive oil and 1 TBSP butter.
*OPT: Serve with a dollop of sour cream or ricotta cheese. 

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

No Place but Up

When you spend the Saturday before Christmas at a laundromat, there's no place to go but up. I guess that's the good news.

It's that time of year again. When we nostalgically (well, if we're lucky) look back at 2017 and gingerly (when we've been unlucky of late) approach 2018 with some level of hope.

The trip to the laundromat is just the latest in a very unlucky and expensive end to 2017.

But that day also was the realization that we're all good at some things and we're all not so great at other things. Lately what I've been good at is having bad luck, and apparently I suck at laundromat. Who knew? But then again who wanted to know? Not me.

No place to go but up, a new year a new chance for good luck | | #MyGraphics #humor

I said on FB and I'll say it again. If your dryer is going to die, especially in the winter months, it should let you know before you wash your clothes. I was not afforded that kindness. So there I stood, on a Saturday when I was determined not to leave the house to fight the holiday traffic, with a dilemma. I had planned it out, doing my errands during the week and leaving all the holiday cooking and baking for the weekends.

What's that old saying about the best laid plans?
So much for trying out my new Pizza Party Boat recipe this afternoon.

Pizza Party Boat is fun to share, an Italian loaf stuffed with pizza ingredients. Bake, slice and share | Recipe developed by | #recipe #snack

Pizza Party Boat

But that's the kind of luck I'd been having. In July we lost our a/c and had to replace our heating and cooling units. After that came the nail Hubs ran over with his car. His tires, taking a lesson from the Ark apparently, had to be replaced in twos, of course. Then came his trip to the dentist ending in his need for a crown. Insurance pays to fix a crown but a new one? That's on us. What next. . . oh yeah, my car needed either expensive repairs or to be replaced, PurDude ended up in the ER (just a little FYI: don't require IV fluids on the weekend when the school clinic is closed unless you have a spare $3000 laying around you want to get rid of), Hubs' cell phone died (and mine only works on "speaker"), my laptop died (but then I go through a few of those a year). The only thing piling up as fast as the bad luck was the bills.

And now the damn dryer. I don't know whether to laugh or cry. What I did was to google laundromats, since I have no idea where any might be. I went all McGyver on the laundry basket situation, since I don't have one, and emptied the pool toys out of an old beach bag, shoved all my wet clothes inside, took a deep breath and went out to fight my way through the . . . dum, dum, dum (insert dramatic sound effect here) . . . dreaded holiday traffic.

Seven hours later (I might possibly be exaggerating a tad bit) I had made the 10 mile trek and arrived with fumes left in my gas tank. I shlepped my bag of soggy clothes inside and looked around like I'd landed on Mars. I found the dryers and although I had hoped they'd take my debit card, it was change only. And I didn't have any. Of course. Fortunately there was a corner of the store for dry cleaning with a very sweet woman working there. She showed me where to find the change machine. 

All I had was a $20 bill. I needed $1.25 so I figured I'd get $5 in quarters and $15 back in bills. Ummm . . . nope. Can you guess what happens if you a $20 bill into a change machine? I'll tell you. You get 80 quarters. 80. And I looked around but apparently they don't give you one of those cups to put them in like they do in Vegas. Turns out initially that was the least of my problems. It seems that 80 quarters in that little change retrieval slot block the door you need to push open to get those quarters out. If a public tug of war with a coin machine had ever been on my bucket list, I can now cross that sucker off.

Door now shoved open, where the hell was I going to put 80 quarters? PS: cross off yanking and tugging a 500 pound purse across the less-than-clean floor of a laundromat too. BTW, anyone want to buy a pocketbook? Bottom is a little scuffed but other than that it's in good shape. And it's big enough to hold a wallet, sunglasses, lipstick and 80 quarters.

Finally got my clothes into a dryer and sat down with my Kindle. But people watching turned out to be just too interesting to concentrate on my book. There were two people sitting in stools in one row of washers the whole time I was there. With them was a dog the size of a horse. I'm guessing that row of washers was their territory. Even if I had clothes to wash, I wasn't going near there. In fact, like a lion in the wild, I made sure not to make eye contact with that animal.

There was an older couple sitting close together, viewing something on a cell phone and speaking softly to each other. It warmed my heart to watch them, in their later years doing errands together. I had made up a whole love story in my head. And then she took something out of a washing machine, they walked out the door, got into different cars and headed in opposite directions.

In walks a woman with a trash bag. She kinda resembled me when she first entered, mimicking a deer in the headlights. She looked around and finally settled on a washer and emptied the contents of her trash bag into it. She started putting quarters into the machine, and then more and then more. She looked around, found the change machine, got more quarters and went back to feeding the washer. Another trip to the change machine and more quarters went into the washer. She finally started her laundry, turned and walked out. Most likely headed to the bank to take out a second mortgage on her home to afford her laundry.

OK, I'm nosy. I admit it. I nonchalantly sauntered over to the washing machine section (not the aisle with the horse-dog though) and checked out her machine. $7. Are you kidding? Let me tell you right now that if my washer dies I'll be grabbing a washboard and heading to the nearest stream.

Finally back home again with dry clothes but still no dryer, I'm hoping that 2018 will be a better year. And wondering if I can pay for a new dryer with quarters.

Baking In A Tornado signature | | #MyGraphics

Pizza Party Boat         

Printable Recipe

1 loaf Italian bread
1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp garlic powder
6 slices provolone cheese
1/2 cup marinara (my Homemade Marinara recipe HERE)
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 TBSP grated parmesan cheese
10 slices of pepperoni
2 TBSP ricotta
1/2 tsp dried parsley

*Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Lightly grease a baking sheet.
*Cut the center out of the Italian loaf, leaving about 1 inch of crust around all sides and on the bottom to form your bread boat. Place on the baking sheet with the top beside it, crust side down
*Mix together the olive oil and garlic powder. Using a pastry brush, brush about half of the seasoned olive oil into the bread boat and onto the top.
*Place the provolone cheese sliced into the loaf. Cover with the marinara, then the mozzarella, then the grated parmesan, then pepperoni.
*Mix together the ricotta and dried parsley. Dollop onto the top of the parmesan.
*Bake for 10 minutes. Remove the top from oven but continue to bake the loaf for another 10 - 15 minutes. Allow to sit for 5 minutes, place the top onto the loaf if desired, slice and serve.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Turkeys and Bobbleheads: Fly on the Wall

Welcome to a monthly Fly on the Wall group post. Today 8 bloggers are inviting you to catch a glimpse of what you’d see if you were a fly on the wall in our homes. Come on in and buzz around my house. At the end of my post you’ll find links to this month’s other participants’ posts.

Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

I got a new car. And considering all the years I've had cars, and all the different cars I've had, you'd think I'd know how to do something as simple as close the trunk by now.

But this SUV has a hydraulic trunk opener. It's pretty easy to open, you just press the button on the key fob. So the discussion was how to close it. Let me set the scene: trunk is open, and around it stands Hubs, College Boy and I.

Me: Well you must close it by just pressing the button on the key fob again (presses the button, nothing happens).
Hubs: I bet you gently press on the trunk and it closes itself (gently presses the trunk, nothing happens).
Me: Maybe you press and hold the button on the key fob (presses and holds the button and the panic alarm wakes the dead . . . and all the neighbors).
College Boy: See on the lip of the trunk, that 4 inch long button lined in red with a picture of an open trunk on it? 

College Boy presses the button and the trunk closes, shakes his head and walks away. 

OK, he made us feel like idiots, but on the positive side, we could STILL be standing there looking at the open trunk.

Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

If you're a regular reader, you know that I talk all the time about trying to get College Boy to write me a guest post. He's intelligent and thoughtful and about certain topics, quite passionate. It's almost become a joke, me asking him when he's going to write me a guest post and him making up excuses as opposed to just saying "never". But this time, he brought it up himself.

College Boy: I'm going to write you a guest post. I can't promise when, but I'll do it.
Me: {{blink, blink}}
College Boy: What's that weird face you're making?
Me: I'm laugh-crying.
College Boy: Laugh-crying?
Me: Yeah, I'm laughing 'cause I know you're not going to do it, and I'm crying 'cause . . . well . . . I know you're not going to do it.

Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

Hubs is outside moving some of the wood from the wood pile into the garage so it's easy to get at and it stays dry. I'm in the house, being me.

Hubs (running in the house): What's going on? Are you OK?
Me: Fine.
Hubs: I thought I heard screaming.
Me: That was me.
Hubs (looking around): Who were you screaming at?
Me: Purdue.
Hubs: The school?
Me: The basketball team.
Hubs (heading back outside): Carry on.

Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

PurDude was home for a few days over Thanksgiving (yay). Apparently his being away so much of the year doesn't diminish his eye-rolling "my mom is nuts, just gotta accept it" mentality. He walked in the house and found me in the kitchen holding a lit match over a bowl of food.

PurDude: What are you doing?
Me: Do you really want to know?
PurDude: Nope.

Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

I was making my THE Best Pumpkin Pie. It puffs up in the oven, then deflates on the counter. I had just shut off the oven and when I looked over at the pie, it was slowly starting to settle.

Me: Look, it almost looks like the pie is breathing.
College Boy: Your food always pulsates.
Me: Huh?

College Boy walks away.
Me (yelling after him): Come back here and tell me what that means.

Me (to Hubs): What the hell does that mean?
Hubs (grabbing his keys): Gotta go. Meeting a client. Don't want to be late. Be back later.
Me (yelling after him): Coward!

Spicy Chicken Roll Ups, little sandwich bites with a kick. Serve as an appetizer or for lunch | Recipe developed by | #recipe

Spicy Chicken Roll Ups

I had been sitting at my desk in our home office working for what seemed like hours. I was adding new payees to my bank website, getting my new car added to our insurance, paying bills, all that boring stuff. Every time I thought I was done, I remembered something else I needed to take care of.

I finally got up from the office and walked into the kitchen.

Me: Ouch. My ass hurts.
College Boy (who scared me since I didn't realize he'd come in the house while I was working): Really Mom? Is it necessary to share that?
Me: Oh, did I say that out loud?

Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

I was preparing the turkey for Thanksgiving when we started to talk about the turkey who used to live in the back yard.

College Boy: I miss that turkey.
Me: Me too, he was like a friend.
Hubs: Yeah, remember when he'd come up to the front door, see himself in the reflection and think it was another turkey.
College Boy: When really he was just seeing Mom.

You've heard me refer to him as "smart ass" before right? Well that happens pretty often.

Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

I had been speaking with Hubs before PurDude came home for Thanksgiving and said that it was possible that PurDude may have gained a lot of weight since we'd last seen him. He moved into a house with a few friends and not only was eating fast food for dinner every night, but was spending a ton of time at the library and may not have been able to keep going to the gym regularly. 

PurDude walked in the door and he looked great. He had clearly been able to make time to keep working out.

Hubs (to me): He's not fat. He looks great.
Me (looking at Hubs with shock): You do know he's standing right next to you, right?
Hubs: Well you said he was going to be fat, he looks good, very fit.
Me (to PurDude): So you may have noticed that Dad lost his mind while you were gone . . .

 Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

PurDude hasn't been home in 6 months. I always see him every other month or so, but since he did an internship this summer, he hadn't been home since May. When I really got a chance to look at him (meaning stopped hugging him long enough to step back for a minute) I noticed that he'd really beefed up and broadened his chest. 

Me: You're spending a lot of time at the gym.
PurDude: I always did.
Me: Since you're always eating on the run, I'm glad you're exercising, but you need to be careful, you don't want to be a bobblehead.
PurDude: bobblehead.
Me: You know, your head doesn't stays the same size. You don't want your chest and shoulders to get too big, you'll look like a bobblehead.
PurDude: So I see you too lost your mind while I was gone . . . 

Fly on the Wall, a multi-blogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

Hubs was going to Best Buy and I knew PurDude was looking for new headphones so I asked Hubs not to go without him but PurDude was sleeping. 

Hubs: He's sleeping and I need to go soon.
Me: Wake him up.
Hubs: I don't want to do that.
Me: He's been sleeping for 12 hours, it's fine.

Hubs goes upstairs and comes back down.

Hubs: He's really fast asleep, I'm not waking him up.
Me: I don't want you to go without him, I want you to pay for the headphones.
Hubs: You go wake him up, he'll take it better from you.

I'm no fool, I know Hubs just wants me to wake him up and be the bad guy. I go up to PurDude's room to get him up.

Me: Honey, wake up. Dad's going to Best Buy and I want to get you those headphones. Dad wanted to go without you but I wouldn't let him.

After this many years of marriage, Hubs should know who he's dealing with. Who's the bad guy now?

Now click on the links below for a peek into some other homes:

Menopausal Mother 
Searching for Sanity
Spatulas on Parade
Never Ever Give Up Hope 
Bookworm in the Kitchen 
The Blogging 911
Go Mama O

Baking In A Tornado signature | | #MyGraphics

Spicy Chicken Roll Ups        

Printable Recipe

1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tsp sriracha sauce
1/8 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/2 green onion, chopped
1 small can chopped black olives
4 medium sized tortillas
8 slices deli chipotle chicken 
1/2 cup Chipotle Ranch salad dressing

OPT: additional sriracha sauce for serving

*Mix the mayonnaise, sriracha, cumin, paprika and garlic powder. Spread onto the center of the tortillas, leaving about a 3/4 inch border.
*Sprinkle with the green onion and chopped black olives.
*Cover with 2 slices of the deli chicken. Roll up tightly.
*Slice the rolled tortillas into about 1 inch slices. 
*OPT: drizzle with additional sriracha sauce for extra spicy.
*Serve with Chipotle Ranch salad dressing for dipping.  

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Never Have I Ever

You've seen them, haven't you? Even played along? I know I have. They're all over facebook, those lists of daring activities and life experiences turned into a game. Have you ever ridden in an ambulance? Been arrested? You give yourself a point for each one you've never done. Add up your points then do the comparison to your friends. Who's more daring? More interesting? 

More honest?

Been sky diving? Have tatoos? Forget all that, lets play "never have I ever", mom style. Give yourself a point for any situation you have not been in. No cheating.

Never have I ever:

* Cleaned food off the ceiling.
* Pushed the clock an hour ahead to bedtime.
* Pretended to listen.
* Repeated "I will not cringe, I will not cringe" to yourself while your child was singing.
* Said if they didn't stop  --> insert behavior here <--  the police would arrest them.

Never Have I Ever, the mom version. | | #funny #MyGraphics

* Faked being on the phone.
* Taken credit for something that dad actually did.
* Hidden snacks.
* Secretly stolen candy from one kid's Halloween bag to give to the other because you know they're going to count, and they damn well better be even.
* Lied about whether they were going to get a shot so they wouldn't scream and cry until we actually got to the doctor's office. 
* Tried to sell cleaning up as a fun game.
* Gagged while changing a diaper.
* Blamed the dog (even when you don't have one).
* "Lost" a loud toy.
* Threatened to kill Barney.
* Told the kids that McDonald's is closed on Tuesdays. 
* Hidden vegetables in a favorite meal.
* Refused to go back home until calling the babysitter to be sure the kids were asleep.
* Claimed to have made something that was bought.
* Drank alone during their nap time.

Holiday Snowflake Cocktail, a thick vanilla milkshake spiked with holiday cheer | Recipe developed by | #recipe #holiday #cocktail
Holiday Snowflake Cocktail
Holiday Snowflake Cocktail, a thick vanilla milkshake spiked with holiday cheer | Recipe developed by | #recipe #holiday #cocktail

Zero? You too? I'm shocked. Just shocked (not!).

Moms rule.

Baking In A Tornado signature | | #MyGraphics

Holiday Snowflake Cocktail       

Printable Recipe

Ingredients (makes 4 - 6):
1 1/2 quarts vanilla bean ice cream
2 TBSP white chocolate cocoa powder
1/4 cup whipped cream flavored rum
1/4 cup vanilla flavored rum
3/4 cup white chocolate liqueur

*Place the ice cream, white chocolate cocoa powder, rums and liqueur in a blender. Whip until smooth. 
*Place the blender in the freezer for at least an hour. Scoop the drink into 4 to 6 glasses.


Friday, December 15, 2017

Who you are in January: Use Your Words

Today’s post is a monthly writing challenge. If you’re new here, this is how it works: participating bloggers picked 4 – 6 words or short phrases for someone else to craft into a post. All words must be used at least once. All of the posts will be unique as each writer has received their own set of words. That’s the challenge, here’s a fun twist; no one who’s participating knows who got their words and in what direction the recipient will take them. Until now.

Use Your Words, a multiblogger writing challenge | | #MyGraphics

At the end of this post you’ll find links to the other blogs featuring this challenge. Check them all out, see what words they got and how they used them.
I'm using:  bingo ~ advent ~ mittens ~ children ~ chestnuts ~ tree
They were submitted by Dawn of Cognitive Script.

It's mid-December, arguably the busiest time of the year. And the most festive. There are just 10 days until the advent of Christmas, 11 days until Kwanzaa, not to mention that it's already Chanukah. Bingo, we've entered the vortex of celebration. Food, fun, family, parties, hangovers, excessive eating, decorating overload . . . there's something for everyone this season, whether you're adorning a tree, roasting chestnuts (which I do, but not over an open fire, in the oven) or have your own family traditions.

I'm a "happy holidays" person. I've talked about it on this blog before so I won't go all through it again. I believe that to wish people happiness in whatever they're celebrating does not in any way diminish what I observe. I'm fortunate in that I have been able to share friends' holiday traditions (love joining in the decoration of their trees) and had them participate in mine (we've played dreidel with more friends who aren't Jewish than who are). I'm angered, though, that in my neighborhood we're forced to pay dues, then some of that money is given out to the home deemed to have the best Christmas decorations. I've heard the argument that Christmas is being diminished, yet what I see is that theirs is the holiday that takes center stage in this country. We've come a long way, but we still have a ways to go when it comes to religious equality. 

But I digress. I said I wasn't going to talk about differences and I won't. I'd rather focus on some of the shared way we celebrate and most importantly, when that ends. 

There's a lot that happens in December, no matter your religion, that is so positive. We focus on family, friends and relationships. We give. We not only honor each other with the thought we put into gifts, but we often throw and attend parties together, bake for neighbors and coworkers.  

Cherry Lime Holiday Shortbreads, a shortbread cookie celebrating the colors of the season with maraschino cherries and lime candies | Recipe developed by | #recipe #cookies
Cherry Lime Holiday Shortbreads
Cherry Lime Holiday Shortbreads, a shortbread cookie celebrating the colors of the season with maraschino cherries and lime candies | Recipe developed by | #recipe #cookies

Charity is often in the mix. We're personally involved in one that feeds the needy in our town. And another where we "adopt" a child in a children's home and purchase them gifts from "Santa". No matter what else is going on in the world around us, this is the season for finding it in our hearts to reach out, to share, to ease the burdens of others. 

But what about the next season? When those same people still need food, clothes, a hand? I don't ask this question for myself. I ask for the children. No, not just those who have less, but those who have plenty. The little ones who are watching us, learning from our actions, emulating our behaviors. Do we tell them that we absolutely do care for others? And there's a season for that?

So in this month of giving, as I button up my cozy coat, put on my warm scarf and my fuzzy mittens, I'll be thinking not only of who I am in December, but who I want to be in January. And February. And March . . .  

Here are links to all the other Use Your Words posts:

Cherry Lime Holiday Shortbreads

Ingredients (makes 2 dozen):
2 sticks butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
2 cups flour
1/2 cup maraschino cherries
1/2 cup lime skittles

1/2 cup white chocolate chips

*Beat butter. Mix in the powdered sugar incorporated and beat until smooth. Carefully beat in the flour and cherries. Mix in the skittles. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
*Chop the maraschino cherries well.
*Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cover cookie sheets with parchment paper.
*Remove cookie dough from the fridge, roll into 1 inch balls, place on the cookie sheets and flatten firmly with the bottom of a well greased glass. Bake for 15 minutes. 
*Remove from oven. Cool for 2 minutes then, using a spatula, push the melted candies up to the edges of the cookies. Allow the cookies to cool completely on the parchment paper.
*Melt the white chocolate chips in the microwave until completely smooth when mixed. Drizzle over the cookies. Allow to set.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

From the End to the Beginning: December Poetry

It's poetry time and as I hope you know by now, this is a monthly treat feature here on the blog. A few friends and I get together each month and choose a theme, then we all go off in our own corners and write.

There are some talented poets in this small group. I'm not one of them. I tend to write funny poems, and there's a method to my madness. I'm not one of those talented poets, yet I enjoy this challenge. What's a girl to do? Get you to laugh with me. Better than laughing at me. So I use humor and silly rhymes and hopefully I amuse. 

Here's today's offering. The theme is Endings.

Monthly Poetry Group, poems based on the theme Endings | | #poetry #MyGraphics

From the End to the Beginning

One year closes out,
new one will begin,
survived the last one,
hope the next is a win.

Time to take stock,
look both back and ahead.
It's a time for reflection,
and hope, not dread.

What didn't kill me,
made me stronger, they say,
Please, I'm strong enough, 
no more tests, I pray.

Yet with each circumstance,
under our belt,
our love for family,
became more heartfelt.

Children no more,
dinner table, empty seat.
A meal as a family,
is now a rare treat.

Chili Beef Pot Pie, a potato crusted pot pie full of beef, beans and corn cooked chili style. A hearty winter dish | Recipe developed by | #dinner #beef

Chili Beef Pot Pie
Chili Beef Pot Pie, a potato crusted pot pie full of beef, beans and corn cooked chili style. A hearty winter dish | Recipe developed by | #dinner #beef

Yet I wouldn't change it,
this year just gone by.
I may miss the past,
But my pride hits the sky.

So . . . 

A new year's beginning,
close out the last one.
Here's my wish to you:
much love, health and fun.

Thanks for stopping by. See you again next month. And if you're a blogger and you want to join this challenge, leave me a comment here or hit me up on FB or twitter. I'll hook you up. 

Before you go, click on over to more Endings poetry: 

Dawn of Cognitive Script shares The Meaning of the End.

Jules of The Bergham Chronicles shares La Fin

Lydia of Cluttered Genius shares The End is Here

Jenn of Sparkly Poetic Weirdo shares Endings, the New Beginnings

Diane of On the Border shares An Ending?

Baking In A Tornado signature | | #MyGraphics

Chili Beef Pot Pie

Printable Recipe

Ingredients (makes about 3, depending on the size):
1 TBSP vegetable oil
1/2 onion, chopped
1# lean stew beef
1 TBSP plus 1 tsp chili powder
3/4 cup beef broth

3 TBSP tomato paste
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp chili flakes
1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn niblets

2 large potatoes
2 TBSP butter
1 TBSP sour cream
1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar
salt and pepper to taste

NOTE: You can make the beef the day ahead, refrigerate in the pot and heat the next day to make the pot pies.
*Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion, cook and stir until it softens. 
*Add the beef and sprinkle with 1 TBSP of the chili powder. Cook and stir until browned. Mix in the beef broth, tomato paste, remaining 1 tsp chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, 1/4 tsp salt and chili flakes. 
*Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes, stirring now and then. Add the black beans and corn and continue simmering for another 45 minutes.
*While the beef is cooking, mashed cooked potatoes (I cook the potatoes in the microwave for this recipe) with the butter, sour cream, cheddar, salt and pepper.
*Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
*Spoon the chili into oven proof bowls or ramekins. Top with the mashed potatoes. Sprinkle with paprika.
*Place a baking sheet into the oven and put the bowls or ramekins onto the baking sheet. Bake for about 15 minutes or until the potatoes start to brown.