Ten Things of Thankful – Through Tears

Thankful, no matter what.


The shootings in Florida had a profound, sad effect on me, on all of us.   Horrific, devastating, heartsick, grief-stricken, despair.  All words to describe it, and many more to try and explain it.  Where have we, as a society, failed?

My hope, in this very sad situation,  came from the young students who will not let this incident define them.  They want social and political change and I have faith they will help us change the tide of how we deal with violence and mental illness.

Through the tragedy, that one hope inspires us to look for the positive, and share gratitude and compassion with others in our lives.

Continue reading “Ten Things of Thankful – Through Tears”

Six Sentence Story Smoke

A Man and His Meat


Jim carefully placed the briquettes inside the bowl shaped barbecue grill along with a metal container of hickory chips for just the right infusion of flavor.

The tomahawk steak had been aging with pepper in the fridge overnight and he was just getting ready to take in out and dust it with kosher salt let it get to room temperature.

These two steps were essential for insuring that the giant hunk of beef rib would be tender and seasoned perfectly.

Jim’s mouth was watering as he dropped the steak on the grill, searing each side at a very high temperature, until the outside was crusty and caramelized and the grill marks were burned into the flesh.

He transferred the steak to the opposite side of the grill, where it would cook indirectly for about forty minutes, the juices properly sealed, ready to absorb the flavor from the wood chips.

All that was left was to adjust the vent at the top of the grill, letting just enough air in and smoke out to keep the fire smoldering.


Join us for some six sentence fun, at Uncharted.


Love and Cheesecake

A Valentine Dessert for Your Love

Cheesecake 013


Dessert gets a bad rap around our house these days.  We love it but we know it is not healthy.  But a special occasion like Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to indulge in treat.  I’m happy to be sharing this recipe with you, as well as the love story that goes with it.

My mother swore it was this cheesecake that sealed the deal between her and my stepfather.  She was a widow with three children, he was a widower with five.  On the night the they decided to make it a blended family, this cheesecake was on the menu.  If you believe the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, this might just be the ticket.

PicMonkey Collage


1 double package of shortbread cookies*  (The original recipe specified Lorna Doones).

2T butter

2 8-0z. packages of cream cheese

½ cup sugar

¼ tsp. salt

2T flour

1t vanilla

4 eggs separated

½ pint heavy cream

1 large can cherry pie filling

*I make my own shortbread cookies and crumble and use them (1 cup flour, ½ cup butter, ¼ cup brown sugar)


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Crumble the cookies with the butter and press into the bottom of a 9″ spring-form pan.
  3. Cream together the cream cheese, sugar,  and salt.
  4. Add the flour and vanilla.
  5. Separate the eggs and add one yolk at a time, beating in between.
  6. Add the heavy cream, stirring in by hand.


  1. Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.  Fold into batter by hand.  Mixture will seem a little lumpy.
  2. Pour over crust.
  3. Bake for one hour.  Then turn off the oven and open the oven door a crack and leave in there for another hour.
  4. When cake is done, take out of the oven and cool completely. You can put it in the fridge.
  5. When cool, top with cherries or desired fruit.


The top of the cake has a tendency to crack.  You can try cooking it in a water bath, or loosening the edges with a knife after you turn the oven off.  It really makes no difference, as you will be topping the cake with canned cherry pie filling.  I’ve tried using light cream cheese and half and half instead of heavy cream, but it is not the same.

Cheesecake 012
Cherries on top are festive for Valentine’s Day, but strawberries, pineapple, blueberries would also work.


My whole family agreed that they had a tingly surge of happiness when they ate a piece.  Maybe it was the sugar, but maybe, just maybe,  it was Cupid’s arrow.


Ten Things of Thankful – Better

Gratitude is good for your health.


Happy Birthday this week to Josie, our host of this very special Ten Things of Thankful bloghop.

Well, good morning friends.  It’s deluging outside on this morning – a blizzard in rain.  I’m thankful that it is rain, and not snow.  The temperatures are in the 50’s; yesterday I saw 60 degrees.  A rare treat in the middle of winter around here.

Continue reading “Ten Things of Thankful – Better”

Listicle – 10 Things – Guilty Pleasures

Ten things that are better than anything –  except being in love.

When I thought about the things in my life that are better than anything, I thought of things like my granddaughter sleeping curled up in a bundle on my shoulder, the good feeling of giving to the important people in your life, doing good deed or works for strangers, or the feeling of security with your spouse of 33 years.    All these equate to great love which is better than anything.

So here is my list of things that are better than anything except being in love.  My guilty pleasures.  The preference order changes daily, hourly.

  1. Coffee – dark roast, early morning joy.

2.  Chocolate – Ghiradelli, please.

3.  Wine – red with (see above).

4.  Just the perfect shoes for the outfit.



5.  A great book that wrenches your emotions and gets inside your mind.  I most recently read A Gentleman In Moscow by Armor Towles.  A book to savor.

6.  Uncontrollable laughing, when you and your sister (Lucy and Ethel) embark on an adventure or a project that usually ends up in raucous, breathless, laughter.

7.  Binge watching an historical series – Downton Abbey, Last Tango in Halifax, Call the Midwife – I do like my English drama.

8.  Seeing a number I like on the scale somehow lifts my spirits and for the day.

9 and 10.  A day at the beach.

Sharing this list with you at the Finish the Sentence Friday blog hop brought to us by Kristi and Kenya


Six Sentence Story – Pitch

Rooftop musings.



Jim had found himself in difficult circumstances before, but tonight’s situation was both physically and emotionally challenging.

Here he was, dangling from the roof of one of the rehabbed Victorians in the rich part of town; his palms digging into the top line,  his feet dangling almost straight down with barely a foothold of support.

His work as, let’s call it, a Procurer or maybe Pilferer of Objects, a modern day Robin Hood, perhaps, had him in and out of the finest homes in the city,  each night.

His stomach was still churning from what he had seen in the attic of this one hundred year old beauty, which, in turn, had made him inattentive to the sounds around him, and forced him out the window and onto this roof, to make an expedient escape.

He had but minutes until dawn revealed his presence.

Jim waited until his rapidly pounding heart calmed,  let his hands open from their tight grip, crouched and slid unto the opposing gable,  and shimmied down the drainpipe and made his getaway across the back fence.


It’s a mystery what Jim saw in that attic.  What do you think it was?



Easy Recipe for Artichoke Pie

I am absolutely abuzz to share this awesome Artichoke Pie recipe with you.   It’s a great dish for a meatless Monday meal or a girl friends luncheon, but trust me, men like it too.    I got this recipe from my friend, Robyn, who also happens to be the mom of my daughter’s boyfriend.  

Articoke pie and cheesecake (Meredith) 008
The creaminess of the cheese and the heartiness of the artichokes all baked up in a bubbly pie will become a family favorite.
Artichoke Pie
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Serves: 6-8 
This is an easy 5-ingredient recipe that utilizes ready-made pie crust. If you are ambitious, by all means make your own dough. I prefer to use the pre-made dough and roll it out.
  • 1 9″ pie crust (I used a deep dish pie pan so the crust only came up to the top of the edge)
  • 2 can quartered articokes
  • 1 16oz block of mozzarella cut into chuncks
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 gloves garlic
  1. Place oil in saute pan with garlic. Cook a minute or two until fragrant. Add the artichokes and saute until they are soft but not browned.
  2. Meanwhile, cut the block of mozzarella into chunks. Drop eggs into a bowl and whisk a little, then add the cheese. Add artichokes into the pie crust with a slotted spoon. Pour the egg mixture on top. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes.

Serve with a simple green salad and light vinaigrette.    It’s rich, creamy and comforting, but most of all easy.