Popcorn Lovers

Here are two recipes for all of you popcorn lovers. One is for ‘sweet and salty’ popcorn and the other is a ‘spiced’ popcorn formula. Rather than head to the theatre for a bucket of their buttery goodness, head to the kitchen! Make a batch of your own variety and take it outdoors for thepopcorn1 evening. Head to the ball field. Watch the sunset. Look for meteor showers. Get outside and enjoy the beauty of summer!

Sweet & Salty

1/3 c. corn kernels

2-3 T. oil

4 t. sugar

1 spoon of water

2 T. butter

Salt to taste.

Begin to pop the corn as usual. While it is popping, in a small saucepan dissolve the sugar in the water over low-med heat. When nearly dissolved, add the butter and stir as it melts. Are you watching that popcorn? When it’s done, turn off the heat and leave the lid on the popcorn. When the liquid sweetness is ready, remove the lid from popcorn and pour the butter mix over it. Turn the heat on very low and toss for a few minutes (to dry the sugar mix on the popcorn). Salt to taste. Yummm. It’s very good!

Spiced Popcorn

½ c. popcorn kernels

2 t. chili powder

1 t. oil

½ t. garlic powder

¼ t. salt

Pop the corn. Mix the remaining four ingredients together in a small bowl. Pour over the popcorn and mix well to coat. Enjoy!


Strawberry Season

The season for all things red and scrumptious is upon us. Strawberries are absolutely delicious, any way you eat them! Plain. Dipped in chocolate. On your morning granola. On your lunchtime salad. Over biscuits for dinner.

Here are three quick and easy recipes that use these lip smacking fruits. Feast away!

Recipe # 1 = Patriotic Party Dessert

Here’s a simple & healthy red, white and blue dessert.strawberry1

In clear glasses or goblets, layer the following: blueberries in bottom, vanilla ice cream next, and strawberry pieces on top. Easy. Pretty. Wholesome. (And using those tasty strawberries!)

Recipe #2 = Strawberry-Rhubarb Gelatin

This is a recipe using fresh strawberries and some of that sour rhubarb your neighbor delivered yesterday. (You just can’t eat rhubarb alone, you know.)

For this delightful red jello, you’ll need: 1 c. chopped (fresh or frozen) rhubarb, ¾ c. water, 3 oz strawberry jello, 1/3 c. sugar, ¼ c. strawberry pieces (or strawberry jam), 1 c. pineapple juice, 1 apple diced, and ½ c. walnuts, chopped

Bring rhubarb and water to a boil. Cover and simmer for 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat.strawberry2

Add gelatin, sugar and strawberries. Stir.

Add pineapple juice. Chill until partially set.

Stir in apple and nuts. Pour in a coated 1 quart bowl.

Unmold onto a plate. It’s great!

Recipe #3 = Strawberry Salad Dressing

Lettuce salads are often a smashing success at summer-time cook outs. They’re easy to throw together (especially this time of year with all the fresh veggies readily available), full of beautiful color, and good for the waistline. Protein options include (but are not limited to) pecans, diced chicken, or black beans. Variety is the key!

The winning ingredient for that party salad this summer should be this dressing!strawberry3

Put the following 4 ingredients in the blender. ½ c. sugar, ½ c. oil, ¼ c. white vinegar, 2-3 strawberries

Drizzle over the salad. Toss. Store leftover dressing in the refrigerator.

Bed in Summer

Having a hard time getting your little one to fall asleep at a decent hour this summer? It’s tough to go to bed when it’s still daylight! Here’s a look from the other side.

BED IN SUMMER (by Robert Louis Stevenson)

In winter I get up at night

And dress by yellow candlelight.

In summer, quite the other way,

I have to go to bed by day.

I have to go to bed and see

The birds still hopping on the tree,

Or hear the grown-up people’s feet

Still going past me in the street.

And does it not seem hard to you,

When all the sky is clear and blue,

And I should like so much to play,

To have to go to bed by day?

Yard Sale Purchases

When my husband and I were still dating, we spent one summer day travelling around Northern Michigan enjoying the beautiful scenery and the abundance of yard sales along the lakeshore. We made lots of memories but made only one purchase. etiquette2An old hardback, first published in 1926, titled ETIQUETTE, Jr. (by: Mary Elizabeth Clark & Margery Closey Quigley), was the solitary acquisition. We read parts of it aloud as we drove along… and laughed heartily at different portions of this manuscript for the prepubescent.

I pulled that treasure off the shelf the other day and thought I’d share some of the wisdom housed within the musty pages. (Okay, quick question. How does one’s view of a book go from ‘hilarious’ to ‘wise’ in a matter of a 14 years? Oh… having kids of my own to teach this to??? Okay. I get it.) Here it is:

** Unpardonable performances that stamp one as unclean are: Blowing one’s nose without a handkerchief or tissue. Wearing soiled underclothing and stockings. Picking one’s nose. Odors of perspiration. Dirty teeth.

** Other obvious marks of being ill-bred are: Failure to be courteous to older people. Questioning the fairness of an award. Criticism of food. etiquetteTalking to one of two persons and ignoring the other.

**Actions that seem slight and harmless to the persons who perpetrate them, but which offend the beholder, are: Spitting. Coughing without covering the mouth. Walking in front of people. Walking on the streets in a bathing suit without a covering.

As the book details in its close, “…the most diligent follower of the rules is not a pleasant companion if he meets his obligations with resentment and contempt. Good manners presume good will, and as you’ve guessed, the underlying principle of all the do’s and don’ts in this chapter and throughout the book is sincere consideration for others.”

So that about sums it up. The lesson to teach this summer break: beware of yard sale purchases. Kidding! Rather, the theme of the season is sincere consideration for others. Sounds like the Golden Rule, doesn’t it? You just saved yourself about 25 cents! (Thanks, Yard Sale lady.)