Friday, August 11, 2023

Cheese Money and an Old Lady Purse: Use Your Words


Hash Brown Dinner Casserole | recipe developed by Karen of | #recipe #dinner

Today’s post is a monthly writing challenge. If you’re new here, this is how it works: my friend Diane and I picked 4 – 6 words or short phrases to submit to each other to craft into a post. All words must be used at least once. Both posts will be unique as we each have our own set of words we're working with.

At the end of this post, you'll find the link to Diane's post, be sure to check it out, see what words I sent her and how she used them.

I'm using:  ambitious ~ ambiguous ~ anatomy ~ arc ~ anything

I had a dream recently. I don't know if I don't have them often, or I just don't remember them. I haven't woken up aware of one for a very long time. This time I did, and what I could recall, was odd. To say the least. 

I've been thinking about it for a few days, trying to make sense of it. I'm not sure why it bothered me, it was a dream after all.

And yet, I really wanted to make sense of it.

I had absolutely no intention of writing about it today, but I saw these words Diane sent me and "ambiguous," "anatomy," "arc," they all brought back the dream.

I know it's ambitious, to try to analyze a dream to begin with, but especially since they are so ambiguous. Not only do we wake up without the puzzle put together, we don't even have all of the pieces.

Cheese Money and an Old Lady Purse | graphic designed by, featured on, and property of Karen of |#MyGraphics #blogging

Here's what I remember, not just what I saw in my mind's eye but what I was thinking, and my impressions, once awake, of what I hadn't been (but maybe should have) been thinking.

I had climbed up a rounded flight of stairs in a very old building. The floor below, I knew, was bustling with activity, an indoor space like at Faneuil Hall in Boston, artisan shops, florists, prepared foods, and a farmer's market.

I get the sense that I was in my late 30s, but I was dressed like an old lady. I wore a dress, belted at the waste, nylons, and sensible shoes. I was holding what I can only describe as an old lady purse. You know, black, wider in the bottom, tapering off to a smaller flat top with handles on either side. The purse was being held by the short handles, no over the shoulder option. It was flat, as though there wasn't anything in it, yet I knew I had, at least my wallet and money.

At the top of the stairs was a long thin hallway, shaped in an arc, with doors along the left side only. The hallway was just shaped like a half circle, but it arced up as well, each door higher than the last. All the way up to the middle, where the hall declined to another set of stairs, even with the ones I had climbed, going back down.

I got the sense that each door was an apartment, and I was to visit each one before heading back down the other staircase. 

On the first door, there was a picture, it looked like it was cut out of a magazine, of an arm. I wasn't curious, didn't knock, and walked right in the door to a bedroom. I chatted for a short time with the person on the bed and moved on. I was entering the third room when I became aware of a few things: all rooms were the same, inhabited by a different person, dressed, appearing healthy, unconcerned that I walked right in and willing to chat, and they all had a picture of a different part of the anatomy on the door. The pictures seemed to correlate to nothing, and were not discussed in our short superficial chats.

I walked down the second set of stairs, intending to purchase broccoli and onions for my dinner casserole at the farmer's market on the first floor.

Hash Brown Dinner Casserole | recipe developed by Karen of | #recipe #dinner
Hash Brown Dinner Casserole

When paying, I realized I didn't have my purse. I looked over to the little wooden table where I'd sat before going upstairs. The purse wasn't there, but 3 snack size string cheese logs that I had apparently left on the table were there. I went over and grabbed the cheese, which was luckily exactly the amount I needed to pay for my groceries. I hooked the plastic bag over my wrist and started walking away from the cashier.

And woke up.

Cheese Money and an Old Lady Purse | graphic designed by, featured on, and property of Karen of |#MyGraphics #blogging

So . . . help me out here, what is my subconscious mind trying to tell me?

A) Instead of reading mysteries, I should write one: The Case of the Missing Old Lady Purse.
B) Don't spend too long in rooms with strangers unless you really want to know about that whole body parts thing.
C) I need to be buying my groceries with string cheese more often.
D) Sleep at your own risk.
E) All of the above.

Or maybe you have your own interpretation you'd like to share?

Use Your Words, a monthly group writing challenge | developed by and graphic property of | #bloggingchallenge #MyGraphics

Here's the link to Diane's Use Your Words post:

Baking In A Tornado signature | | #MyGraphics

Hash Brown Dinner Casserole

1 1/2 cups broccoli florets, cut small
2 cups cooked chicken
1 bag (20 oz) potato shreds
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 can (10.5 oz) cream of potato soup
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne
2/3 cup crushed potato chips
3 TBSP butter, melted
1 tsp paprika

Steam the broccoli in the microwave for 1 minute. Chop the chicken.
*Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8 X 11 baking dish.
*In a large bowl, mix together the broccoli, chicken, potato shreds, onion, cheese, soup, sour cream, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Pour evenly into the prepared baking dish.
*Sprinkle with the crushed potato chips, drizzle with the melted butter and sprinkle with the paprika.
*Bake for 25 minutes, covered. Uncover and bake for another 20 minutes.


  1. I don’t know, but maybe cheese is not a good idea for a snack while watching Murder She Wrote. That’s all I got,I’m old and I’ve got to go find my old lady pocketbook. You described it perfectly, did you see it? Donna.

  2. No theories on your dream, but wanted to let you know your recipe sounds like something I can use for Staff Lunch at work! If I had to bulk it up a little bit to serve seven people would you recommend adding more chicken or broccoli?

    1. I would personally add more protein, then add more vegetables through a side salad. Let me know how it goes!

  3. I have heard some people say eating cheese before bed causes weird dreams but I don't know, what I do know is I have many weird dreams often waking and thinking what the hell was that all about.

    1. I can't even remember the last time I remembered a dream, LOL.

  4. Maybe it's a good thing we don't use cheese as money because can you imagine a purse that smalls like old cheese? (Sorry)

    1. Yeah, that could be a problem. And I'd imagine we'd attract bugs, and animals.

  5. How did that happen? Did my comment publish or did I reload the page? I know I didn't finish typing, I was trying to correct something.

    Anyway, I'll be back to see if the first one actually went through. Technology, ach!

    1. Ahh, the old magically disappearing comment. This is the only one that showed up.

  6. I used to write my dreams (Nightmares) down in a dream journal until I showed it to my therapist and she wanted to bring in a college professor to talk to me about them. lol I keep them to myself now. Maybe I should write a book? lol

    That casserole looks good.

    1. Now I want to know why she wanted that professor to talk to you about your dreams.

  7. Cheese money! I love it! If you can't find a grocery, you can just eat your money. Brilliant!
    This dream is hilarious. Now I, too am wondering about the body parts.
    And your old lady pocketbook. If you do find it, be careful upon opening...

    1. We will never know what those body parts were all about, nor what's in that old lady pocketbook.


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