Archive for the ‘recipes’ Category

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I have served this “special cake” at Christmas time for over twenty years. One modification I made for many years was using sugar free pudding mix for G. Often I made two cakes because so many people enjoy this cake. Our Grandson asks to take home the “left overs.” It’s my favorite winter treat.

Harvey Wallbanger Cake
1 pound cake mix 4 eggs
3.5 oz. vanilla instant pudding mix 1/4 cup Galliano liqueur
1/2 cup veg oil (canola) 3/4 cup orange juice

Grease & flour Crock-Pot Bread ‘n Bake pan and cover. Turn Crock-Pot on high to pre heat. In large bowl blend cake mix & pudding mix. Mix last 4 ingredients in separate bowl. Combine mixes & liquid and mix on high for two minutes. Pour batter in cake pan, cover, and place in covered Crock-Pot. Bake on High 2 to 3 hours. Check center for doneness with toothpick after 2 hours, continue to check until toothpick comes out clean.
Remove cake and lightly dust with powdered sugar.

Harvey Wallbanger Cake

We finally have cold weather, no snow but cold.

My best guess puts this Crockpot at over thirty years old. I have searched through the little recipe booklet for a date but can’t find one. This little old crockpot has provided us with many wonderful dishes. I took a photo of the booklet, maybe some knows the date it was printed. IMG_2452

Kansas hasn’t had a good snow in two years! Today there is about two feet on the ground.
All that snow will be good for my garden, the trees and bushes, and all the farmers in the area. The drought is in it’s second year and this snow will not be enough but I was in need of a good ole fashion snowstorm. This week has reminded me of my youth in the northern part of the United States.
Last sunny Sunday while shoveling snow off the back deck I had to remove my jacket and sunglasses were a must have. I am aware of how bright the early mornings seem with the snow cover. Hot chocolate with marshmallows is my favorite afternoon treat. I have made bread, soups and other comfort foods galore.

However, while watching the news coverage during the storms I noticed several stories with parents bemoaning being stuck inside with their children all day. I know some were without electricity at times but my retired teacher brain kicked into over drive and gave me this week’s Thursday’s Thirteen.


1. Begin with breakfast. Everyone helps make pancakes, french toast or a hot cereal, then do the clean up without the dish washer.
2. Give everyone a dust cloth and challenge them to dust the woodwork (doors, molding , tops of windows and doors) in all rooms. This one is courtesy of D, when I called to check/chat she was dusting to get some exercise.
3. Go out for 10 minutes – shovel or sweep the steps and walk, romp with the dogs, walk a crooked line through the yards. Serve hot chocolate after all coats are hanging to dry.
4. Make a simple soup. Egg Drop soup is easy – 4 cups chicken broth, 2 beaten eggs, dash of pepper, some green onions finely chopped. Heat broth to just below a boil, stir in eggs add pepper. Serve with green onions sprinkled over.
5. Change the bedding from the mattress up. Everyone helps turn the mattresses and complete the laundry.
6. Cut out snowflakes or snowmen to decorate the refrigerator.
7. Go through bed room closets and dressers organizing and discarding. I discovered some things I hadn’t worn since retiring. They are bagged and ready to go.
8. Play card games; war, crazy eights, gin, poker.
9. Read for 30 minute intervals in the morning, afternoon and evening. Kids love to have a story read to them.
10. Watch the game shows on TV (Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy, The Price Is Right). Figure out the players’ strategies.
11. Make, bake, eat. Jiffy cornbread, Martha White blueberry muffins, Betty Crocker brownies all come in 6-8 servings, require few add ins and are cheap.
12. Put on some music and exercise/dance. Anything that keeps everyone moving, even going up and down the stairs for 13 minutes.
13. Tossing games with rolled up socks. Set a large kettle in the center of the floor, on the stairs even the table. Try putting your self in different positions-sitting, kneeling or lying down.

Before the storm hit my favorite local grocery store had a great sale on asparagus, my favorite vegetable. I took a leap and made asparagus soup on Friday. I even made it with vegetable broth for meatless Friday. The picture doesn’t do it justice, it was delicious and comforting.

The sour cream slipped under before I got a good photo.

Asparagus Soup

The possibilities are endless. Enjoy your days!!