Sunday, November 29, 2009

53 memories on my 53rd birthday

On my birthday a few years ago, back when I had the time and the mental energy and creativity to do such things, I wrote a memory for each year of my life.  I’ve decided to re-post those memories and add a few more today, on my (gulp!) 53rd birthday. 

Fifty-three used to seem so old until now, suddenly, it doesn’t seem so old at all.  Although I must admit, this 53rd year has aged me, both physically and emotionally.  I do, however, expect a full recovery!

So. On with it:

Age 1: I arrive 10 1/2 months after the birth of my brother. Guess who was a boo-boo?

Age 2: My oldest brother was pulling me around the garage in a wagon. Something caught his attention and he let go of the wagon, sending me down the steep sloped driveway and into the street, right into the path of an 18-wheeler, narrowly missing it.

Age 3: I became a big sister. I wanted a sister, but I got another brother. That made three boys and me.

Age 4: I started kindergarten, along with my brother who, at 5, was still young but a more appropriate age than me. I've always assumed Mom wanted us both in school ASAP. I can't believe they let me start school that young!

Age 5: Ricky, a family friend, gave me a ring from the Elmwood Dime Store and asked me to marry him. The "sizing" on the back of the ring pinched my skin so I took it off.

Age 6: My baby brother and I went to live in Sacramento with my aunt and uncle while my mother took my older brothers to Germany. Dad stayed in Berkeley. I later learned that Mom had an affair with a family friend in Germany, unbeknownst to anyone at the time.

Age 7: My second 2nd grade teacher (of course I ended up paying for starting school too young by repeating a year!), Mrs. Burnett, insisted that I hold my pencil way up by the eraser. Or at least that's how I remember it.

Age 8: I had an African-American third grade teacher, who I adored. I think she was the only African-American teacher in Berkeley, certainly the only one in our very white school, even though integration was on the horizon.

Age 9: I remember looking down my dress while the teacher was reading a book to us. 'I'm sprouting something,' I thought to myself. The teacher yelled at me, telling to get my "head out of my dress." I felt ashamed and embarrassed.

Age 10: I started my period waaaay too young (I thought), in 4th grade. That day, Mom announced it proudly to my dad and brothers at dinner. I was mortified!

Age 11: I'd wake up early and sneak into my brother's room to steal not one but TWO white t-shirts from his dresser. They hid my bra strap under my white see-through blouse. Are you catching that I resisted my budding womanhood?!

Age 12: I was a serious flautist and very much into classical music. Just a typical 7th grader. NOT. I existed for Peter Jaffe, who never even spoke to me! My first thought when my parents told me that we'd be moving from Berkeley to the Peninsula, was that I'd never get my chance with Peter -- and I was right.

Age 13: I received my first kiss from Ken Johnson. (Many years later the story of that kiss was published by the Seattle Times, and also won a contest here.)

Age 14: My teen rebellion took the form of being very straight-laced and conservative because that was the most dramatic way I could rebel against very liberal Berkeley parents. Think Alex(a) Keaton!

Age 15: In continuing teen rebellion, I tried out for the varsity cheerleading squad at school (a high school extra-curricular activity -- how American!). When I made the squad, my first thought was that'll show them that I'm no hippie!

Age 16: Because I repeated 2nd grade years before, I was the oldest in my class, thus the first to get my driver's license. This was very cool!

Age 17: I joined Young Life asked my parents for a Bible for my birthday -- (organized religion -- how rebellious!).

Age 18: I graduated from high school in the Bay Area and started college in Santa Barbara. The beach and sun every day? And cute boys too? This was bliss!

Age 19: I met Tom, my husband, when he was an Resident Assistant in my dorm. He used to think it was funny to stuff me in cabinets and drawers. I think it's funny (looking back) that I fit in them! Lost of giggly girls had crushes on Tom, but I was definitely most persistent.

Age 20: I went to Disneyland for the first time, even though I'd lived in California all my life.

Age 21: I was taken out for my first legal drink at a restaurant called "1129" on my birthday, which falls on the date 11/29. I always felt a kinship with that restaurant on State Street in Santa Barbara and wonder if it's still there.

Age 22: I graduated from college with a degree in psychology and absolutely no clue what to do with it, except that I knew that I wanted to work with kids.

Age 23: I went to Germany alone for 8 weeks and fell madly in love at first sight. The romance lasted almost two years; the friendship has lasted a lifetime.

Age 24: I went to grad school at Stanford and got a Masters degree in education with an emphasis in educational media. This is still my "chosen field."

Age 25: I had my first career job, at Walt Disney Educational Media Company (WDEMCO), producing stuff like educational filmstrips and comic books for kids.

Age 26: Tom and I got married at the Wayfarer's Chapel in Palos Verdes, CA.

Age 27: Elisabeth was born! It was a crowded weekend at the hospital with something like 30 babies born over the long Memorial Day weekend, and OUR baby was voted "cutest on the ward" by the nurses! Cutest, yes. But they voted her fartiest, too (Some things never change!)

Age 28: Surprisingly (since I had a new baby at home), this was one of the most productive years of my career. I designed and/or produced three games with Sierra Online, two with Looking Glass Software, and TEN with Panasonic. The Panasonic games never saw the light of day because the company decided not to go down the personal computer road. We still have the prototype keyboard under Aleks' bed; it weighs a ton!

Age 29: We live in a rented house in Westchester, CA, less than a mile from LAX. The cadence of our conversations allowed for 747s to pass overhead -- talking, silence/waiting, resume... repeat. We thought $150,000 was just too dang much to spend on a tiny house that was built in 1946, so we didn't buy. (We also didn't buy because we didn't have a down payment.)

Age 30: Peter was born. Unlike Elisabeth, who was feisty, active and verbal, he was calm, quiet and reflective, right from day one.

Age 31: I opened my own business, Sandcastle Designs, and created games for The Learning Company. But mostly I was a mommy -- and absolutely loving it!

Age 32: We bought a house in the 'burbs and moved from LA to North San Diego county. I quit all work and immersed myself in the joys of motherhood, from Mommy and Me classes to swimming lessons.

Age 33: After a crazy pregnancy, Aleks and Kat were born on the exact day and the exact moment that the Berlin Wall came down! Now we have four kids under the age of five!

Age 34: I have no clue. It's all a blur. But I do know that this was the beginning of being completely out of touch with popular culture -- music, fashions, TV shows, all of it. I did mommying and little else -- and I adored every minute of it, even in the throes of it all.

Age 35: I had surgery (an abdominoplasty) to repair the abdominal damage due to the twin pregnancy. They removed a bunch of skin, repaired the muscles, and stole my belly button, replacing it with a fake one. I had looked 6 (or more?) months pregnant until the surgery.

Age 36: We went camping at the beach with all four kids. I remember coming home completely exhausted, vowing never again. It took four days to pack and four days to unpack and do laundry for a two-day trip. (Think camping gear plus an incredible amount of kid gear, from clip on high chairs to cribs to strollers.)

Age 37: We moved from San Diego (sun, water, palm trees) to Eastern Washington (tumbleweed, dust, extreme temperatures). We buy our dream house, which we love, but when we open the door, we're greeted by -- well, by tumbleweed, dust, and extreme temperatures. Tom hated working at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, where his masters degree in Environmental Engineering was touted and shown off to federal officials, but he actually did nothing and was bored stiff.

Age 38: I studied to become a Certified Childbirth Educator and I taught childbirth classes at the local hospital.

Age 39: We moved from what Tom calls "the armpit of Washington" (the dry Eastern side) to the lush, green Western part of the state. As soon as we closed escrow on our new house, Tom fell victim to a company wide lay-off at the consulting firm that had just hired him. Two weeks later a huge tree from two properties over fell on our house, rendering much of it unlivable and totaling both cars in the driveway, one of which contained all the kids' Christmas presents.

Age 40: I went back to my educational media career, working at Edmark, and designed a cute game called Carnival Countdown.

Age 41: I taught childbirth classes at the very progressive local hospital and certified to become a doula with esteemed educator and writer Penny Simkin (I'll bet she wrote the textbook for your childbirth class!), who was also on the board of the hospital's Family Maternity Center.

Age 42: I was the Lead Educational Design Consultant for the Blue's Clues computer games. Possibly as a result of working on such fun, youthful games, I was carded at Rite Aid! (Never mind that the sales woman wore glasses as thick as a Coke bottle... )

Age 43: I'm caught up in the Seattle start-up frenzy, hired over lattes and promised fame and fortune. In one year, I work for three different start-ups, each promising more than the last. In the end, I come out with nothing but worthless stock certificates and an unemployment claim.

Age 44: My mother and I plan a trip to Germany, just the two of us. It's the first time I'd leave my family for more than a few days. Two weeks before we're to leave, Mom is diagnosed with ovarian cancer. We postpone the trip, saying we'll go next year. I secretly don't believe we will.

Age 45: Mom goes into remission and we go to Germany and have the most amazingly fabulous, wonderful time. We feel like sisters. I start work as a producer and product manager at a local health education non-profit.

Age 46: At my brother's wedding, a dear friendship from my childhood is rekindled and Luki and I share a wonderful e-mail correspondence. My husband thinks it's fine and supports my old/new friendship; his wife, however, forbids him to communicate with me in any way. I still miss him.

Age 47: I am the Executive Producer of FUEL, a DVD series for teens about body image, self-esteem and the media, as well as nutrition, activity and positive activism. My kids, teens by now, help by telling me what's cheesy and what works. It wins awards and I'm proud.

Age 48: FUEL's sister product, CHILL, which addresses teen stress, wraps production. I feel completely in my element and love producing. Who cares about the 2+ hour daily commute?!

Age 49: The non-profit decides to eliminate their product development department to focus on a new non-product-oriented venture. I am laid off and heart-broken.

Age 50: I work a contract job as a Program Manager at Microsoft. Odd place! Now that the kids are almost adults, we decide to take a family vacation to Hawaii. We have a blast! 

Age 51: After a short stint as a Senior Program Manager with a Gates Foundation partnership company, the year is spent mostly unemployed.  In spite of it, Tom and I decide to go to Germany together for the first time.  Great decision!

Age 52: I land a job as a Senior Project Manager for a Microsoft agency, working typical (insane) Microsoft hours.  Now solidly out of kids’ media, I’m a bit of a fish out of water, but attaining very marketable skills.  Aleks and Kat graduate from high school and Tom and I are officially empty-nesters.

Age 53: Tom is laid off.  I take a stupid fall on our front walkway and break/tear everything in my left ankle.  I assume the 8-hour surgery and 4 days in the hospital are the end of the ordeal, but they’re actually just the beginning.  The injury and the lay-off impact everything for most of the year.  Just in time for the holidays, Tom gets a job and I (will) have my hardware surgically removed! So things are looking up.  Stay tuned…!

Stumble Upon Toolbar

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Happy Apple Cup game day!

With Peter at Washington State University and Aleks -- and  now Kat! -- at the University of Washington, this is the parental equivalent to “I don’t like either of your drawings better.  They’re both beautiful for different reasons!” 


May the best team win!

Stumble Upon Toolbar

Friday, November 27, 2009

Extra-super-duper-fantabulous news!

I’ll just come right out and say it because I can’t keep it in any longer:


As you might recall, Tom’s career – while always centering on environmental something – has been just a bit topsy-turvy over the past nine years. 

Tom was laid off from his job as an Environmental Engineer at a large local aerospace corporation shortly after 9/11.  Just a few months previous to his lay-off, Tom had begun taking a few digital art and animation classes at the local community college.  Although he had a masters degree and 20-plus years’ experience in the field of environmental engineering, Tom wanted to explore his always-present but always-dormant artistic talent, and the lay-off, combined with my secure job provided him that opportunity. 

(There are only two people I know who have such a distinct dichotomy -- the mind of an engineer and the soul of an artist: one is my father; the other is my husband.)

Tom spent 2002 as a full-time student and by 2003 he had earned an AA in Digital Graphics and Animation, working at least as hard for that degree, in my opinion, as he had worked to earn his Masters in Engineering almost 20 years before.  During the semester before he graduated, he was lucky to land an unpaid internship with a local gaming company and upon graduation he was extra lucky to be hired as an Environment Artist at the same company. 

So he’d made his way from Environmental Engineer to Environment Artist.  Convenient!

After six years as a Digital Artist, Tom was again victim to a company-wide lay-off, this time fueled by the catastrophic economy rather than by catastrophic world events. 


After much thought and discussion, Tom decided to try to make his way back to environmental work.  Or rather, to work in the field of Environmental Science and Engineering as opposed to Environmental Graphics.  The political and social climate had become more attune t0 environmental work and his hope was that jobs in the environmental arena would be easier to come by now than they were nine years ago.  And although he enjoyed his stint as an artist, he missed the more professional world. 

Besides, with three kids in college full-time (well, four – but Elisabeth’s post-graduate work is up to her to cover), it felt like a more responsible move to try to get back to the field in which he had more experience… a field in which the money is also invariably better.

Long story short, Tom will go back to his previous job in his previous department and his previous company early next month!  Except for the learning curve of getting back up to speed after nine years away, it will probably begin to feel as if he’d never left.

I am thrilled for him, relived for our family, and newly hopeful that we can now face both the multiple-kids-in-college years and the saving-for-retirement years with a bit more hope and confidence.

In a word, PHEW!!

(Yes, we did some celebrating when it was all finalized:

IMG_1965 IMG_1968 IMG_1973 IMG_1977 IMG_1983

Stumble Upon Toolbar

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Our Thanksgiving celebration in 99 photos or less

Family, friends and food – what could be better?

The Preparation:

 IMG_2072 IMG_2080 IMG_2085 IMG_2088 IMG_2091 IMG_2123 IMG_2150

The Friends:

IMG_2037 IMG_2038 IMG_2051 IMG_2076 IMG_2117 IMG_2129 IMG_2161 IMG_2166 IMG_2223 IMG_2235 IMG_2242

The Family:

IMG_2044 IMG_2045 IMG_2048 IMG_2070 IMG_2074 IMG_2094  

The Fun:

IMG_2032 IMG_2115 IMG_2154 IMG_2237


The Food:

IMG_2039 IMG_2097  IMG_2104 IMG_2151 IMG_2173 IMG_2174 IMG_2183 IMG_2185 IMG_2187 


The Aftermath:

IMG_2118 IMG_2193 IMG_2195

Hope you had a festive and fun-filled Thanksgiving! 

And to my dear friends and co-workers in Mumbai who don’t have us to bug you and boss you around for two whole days/nights, this post is dedicated to you! 

Stumble Upon Toolbar

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Mr. and Mrs. (via Skype!)

My dad and MaryLou got married this afternoon! Unfortunately, we weren’t able to make the trip to Ashland, Oregon because of kids’ school schedules, distance constraints and other factors that made our presence there impossible. But thanks to Skype we were almost as good as there, lighting a candle with family and friends and toasting to the happy couple.

It was a brief and beautiful ceremony. Dad and Lou each read the same poem to each other (Rilke, I think) – Dad in German and Lou in English. I’ve rarely seen my dad choked up, but he definitely was! I’m sure that what goes through an 81-year-old groom’s and a 77-year-old bride’s mind during their wedding ceremony is vastly different than what goes through 20-somethings’ minds. They’ve done this before – both relatively successfully – and they know what marriage means in ways that no young couple could ever know!

Dad and Lou, I love you both and wish you continued bliss for many years to come!

Stumble Upon Toolbar

Monday, November 23, 2009

Guess who’s a Husky!


No, not Boo (who is perfectly content in any position he’s held in… can you say easy-going?!). 

Persistence has paid off for Kat!  Her application to the University of Washington for this coming Winter quarter was her third application process – and this time she rocked it!  As of January 4th, Kat will be joining her twin brother at UW… and Tom and I will be back to empty-nesting it.

Congratulations, Kat!  You are now a Dawg!

Stumble Upon Toolbar

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Northwest Ladybug’s annual Thanksgiving shopping list and recipe post

(A re-post that you might find helpful this week:)

For a few years now, I've been slowly committing our family's Thanksgiving menu, shopping list and recipes to "paper." It's been a slow process but, by jove, I think I might have it just about finished this year.

I've learned through experience that families often assume that favorite recipes will somehow be passed on through the generation -- but if no one takes responsibility to actually document those recipes, they can easily get lost over time. My father knew this and documented Mom's fingergolatschen and zimptsterne Christmas cookie recipes, but I know that many more recipes could easily get lost if we don't make a concerted effort to document them.

And hey -- why not share the joy?

So from our family to yours…


…here's our Thanksgiving dinner, presented as a series of lists -- menu, shopping and recipe how-to's. But within this simple list are memories, laughter, joy, and some amazingly wonderful family memories. Some of these recipes, such as the creamed onions and the green bean casserole, can be found pretty much anywhere. But some of the recipes, like my aunt Ulli's rolls (warning: they take all day to make!), Nana's pumpkin chiffon pie or Omi's raspberry cheescake, are dearly beloved and coveted recipes that have been passed on in the family for over 50 years.

Tom's delicious stuffing is absolutely adored by both sides of the family, but when I asked him to sit across from me and recite how he makes it (my mouth is watering as I type this!), his attitude was much like Mom's attitude about both cooking and learning German: "Das fuehlt man!" ("one just has a feel for it!"). "Just use what's around," he says. That's hard to put in a list, but take note!

So from our house to yours, Happy Thanksgiving week! ENJOY!

(Please excuse inconsistencies, formatting issues, typos, etc. This is NOT a professional document! Also, I adore linky-love, so feel free to share this post with your family and friends, but please respect the spirit with which it was posted and only share it with people you know.)

Our Thanksgiving Menu, Shopping List & Recipes

(Serves 10 – 20 people)


  • Hors D’eurves (Apricot brie & crackers, veggies & dip)
  • Turkey (and Tofurkey)
  • Tom’s Stuffing
  • Gravy
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Green Bean Casserole
  • Ulli’s Rolls
  • Creamed Onions
  • Betty’s Cranberry Mold
  • Suzie’s Caramelized Walnut and Pear Salad
  • Nana’s Pumpkin Chiffon Pie
  • Omi’s Raspberry Cheesecake

Shopping List:


  • Turkey
  • Tofurkey for vegetarians


  • Apples (2 - 3)
  • Orange (1 - 2)
  • Potatoes (1 sm. bag Yukon Gold)
  • Baby Greens (2 bags)
  • Green Onions (1 bunch)
  • Yellow Sweet Onions (3 large)
  • Cranberries (2 bags)
  • Celery (1bunch)
  • Baby carrots (1 bag)
  • Cauliflower (1/2 head)
  • Radishes (1 bunch)
  • Pea pods (some)
  • Cucumber
  • Lemons (1 - 2)
  • Baby pearl/white onions (2 pounds)
  • Fresh garlic (lots!)


  • ½ & ½ (1 quart)
  • Whole milk (1/2 gallon)
  • Butter (2 - 3 pounds)
  • Sour Cream (1-2 quarts)
  • Eggs (1 - 2 dozen)
  • Whipping cream (1 qt)
  • Brie with apricots (sold as a package)
  • Cream cheese (1.5 pounds)

Dry, Canned and Packaged:

  • Crackers for Brie (2 boxes)
  • Graham crackers or graham cracker crumbs (2 - 3 boxes)
  • Turkey stock (1 large can)
  • Onion Soup mix (1 box)
  • Olives (1 can)
  • Water Chestnuts (1 can)
  • French friend onion toppers (1 can)
  • Mushroom soup (2 cans)
  • Unflavored gelatin (2 envelopes)
  • Canned pumpkin (2 large cans)
  • Dark brown sugar (1 -2 boxes)
  • Raspberry Jello (1 large box)
  • Flour
  • Wondra flour
  • Pears (1 reg can, or better yet, fresh)
  • Craisins (1 package)
  • Raspberry dressing
  • Granulated sugar
  • Corn starch
  • Yeast (fresh?)
  • Raisins
  • Craisins


  • Pumpernickel
  • Sourdough
  • Cornbread
  • Other breads for stuffing, as desired
  • Bread crumbs (1/2 c at most) for creamed onions

Herbs, Spices & Nuts:

  • Chopped walnuts (1 bag)
  • Cinnamon
  • Ginger
  • Allspice
  • Garlic
  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Oregano
  • Sage
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Basil
  • Parsley
  • Bay leaves
  • Salt (including sea salt) & pepper
  • Juniper berries
  • Vanilla


  • French Green Beans (2 bags)
  • Raspberries (2 bags)


  • Red & white wine
  • Beer
  • Sherry
  • Etc!

Other Liquids & Drinks

  • Coffee beans (regular and decaf)
  • Sparkling cider
  • Pop/Soda
  • Juice
  • Bottled Water
  • Chicken broth (you can hardly have too much!)
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Soy sauce
  • Olive oil


Brining & Cooking the Turkey:

Brine: Use any aromatic spice or herb you like: rosemary leaves, bay leaves, sea salt, dried apples, juniper berries, lemon peel, garlic, rosemary, thyme, black pepper, and bay leaf. On Tuesday night, soak rinsed turkey in bring ingredients, mixed with water in an ice chest, cover for 24 hours.

Turkey: ½ to 1 pound per person, cook as directed after brining.


Combine dry ingredients: Pumpernickle, sourdough, & corn bread, cubed and dried.

Combine: Sliced black olives, celery, cubed apple, raisins, Craisins, walnuts (if desired), water chestnuts.

Combine: chicken broth, red wine, soy sauce, garlic, onions, Worcestershire, at least 1 stick butter, thyme, oregano, rosemary, sage, basil, salt and pepper to taste (be careful with salt!), olive oil, etc per “feel” (das fuhlt man!”).

Mix together in big VAT until it feels right. Loosely stuff some into turkey and put remainder in casserole dish. Bake till done.

Pan drippings
Wondra flour
Chicken broth

Use the pan that the turkey cooked in. Drain excess fat. Place pan over two burners, set on very low heat. Slowly (very slowly!) add Wondra to soak up pan drippings, scraping drippings from side. Slowly add chicken broth as needed to add volume, keeping the gravy thick. (Warning: It’ll thicken further, even after removed from heat.)

Mashed Potatoes:

(12 servings)

  • 5 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, cubed
  • 2 (3 ounce) packages cream cheese
  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cube butter, softened
  • 2 teaspoons onion salt
  • ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

Place potatoes in a large pot of lightly salted water. Bring to a boil, and cook until tender, about 15 minutes.

Drain, and mash.

In a large bowl, mix mashed potatoes, cream cheese, butter sour cream, milk, onion salt, and pepper. Transfer to a large casserole dish. Store in fridge a few days, if desired.

Let stand at room temperature, 30 minutes. Cover, and bake for 50 minutes in the preheated oven.

Green Bean Casserole:

  • 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 4 cups cooked green beans
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/3 cups French fried onions

Mix soup, milk and pepper in a 1 1/2-quart casserole dish. Stir in beans and 2/3 cup of the fried onions. Bake for about 25 minutes at 350 degrees F. Top with the remaining 2/3 cup fried onions and bake about 5 more minutes, until onions are lightly browned.
Serves 6.

Ulli’s Rolls:

  • 2 cups milk, scalded and cooled
  • 1/4 cup butter, dissolved in hot milk
  • 2 cakes fresh yeast, dissolved in 1 T lukewarm water
  • 1 T sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 4-3/4 cups flour

Beat the eggs, add sugar and salt. To beaten eggs and

sugar add milk mixture and dissolved yeast. Then add the

flour. Beat well. It will not be a very firm dough. Let

rise. To make the rolls, you have to keep your hands

well floured, or the dough will stick badly. Pinch off

pieces of dough, roll into a ball, roll in melted butter

and arrange in angel food pan. Let rise. Bake at 400°

for 30-45 minutes.

To serve, invert the angel food pan onto a platter. The

rolls can easily be broken off.

Creamed Onions:

  • 1 pound small white onions
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup heavy or whipping cream
  • chicken broth, milk, or onion cooking liquid to thin sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • Splash of sherry

Peel the onions. Cook in about 3/4 cup water until tender. Make white sauce. Melt butter in saucepan over medium low heat then stir in flour; gradually add cream and sherry, stirring constantly until thickened and bubbly. Cover with bread crumbs, if desired.

Betty’s Cranberry Mold:

  • 1 large raspberry or cherry Jello

Make Jello according to directions - add 3/4 cup sugar.

When Jello is half set, mix in:

  • 2 cups cranberries - raw and chopped
  • 1 small orange
  • 1 apple, chopped

Fill into oiled mold, refrigerate.

Suzie’s Caramelized Walnut and Pear Salad

(4 servings)
6 cups mixed baby greens/Romaine mix
1 cup Caramelized Walnuts (recipe below)
1 cup crumbled bleu cheese
2 pears, cut in 1/4-inch dice
1 cup thin strips of red bell pepper
1/2 cup Raspberry Vinaigrette
Pear slices and julienne red peppers, to garnish
In a large bowl, toss together the greens, walnuts, bleu cheese, pears
and red pepper in the Champagne Vinaigrette. Place mixture in a salad
bowl, then garnish with red peppers and slices of pear
Caramelized Walnuts
1/2 pound walnuts, about 1 3/4 cups
1 egg white
1/3 cup sugar
Preheat oven to 350º. Mix walnuts, egg white and sugar together in a
medium bowl. Place on sheet pan and bake at 350º degrees for 15 to 20
minutes. Let cool, then break into pieces if necessary.

Nana’s Pumpkin Chiffon Pie:

  • 10” pie shell (see ingredients below)
  • ¾ c milk
  • 2 ¼ c canned pumpkin
  • 1 ½ c brown sugar
  • 1/8 t salt
  • ¾ t ginger
  • ¾ t cinnamon
  • 1/3 t nutmeg
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • 1/3 c cold water
  • 1 ½ cups cream
  • ¾ t orange rind
  • 1/3 c sugar

CRUST (per crust):

  • 1 ½ c graham cracker crumbs
  • ¼ c sugar
  • ½ c melted butter
  • 1/3 t cinammon

Combine ingredients and bake for 5 minutes at 350 degrees.

Heat milk, pumpkin, sugar, salt and spices together over medium to low heat. Dissolve gelatin in cold water. Separate egg yolks from egg whites. Beat egg yolks and add to heated mixture, which is still over low heat. Heat until thickened. Remove mixture from heat and add softened gelatin. Cool mixture until further thickened. Whip cream and slowly add orange rind to cream. Chill.

While both mixtures chill separately beat egg whites and slowly add sugar until peaks form. Remove both pumpkin mixture and whipped cream from fridge and gently fold all three mixtures (pumpkin, whipped cream and egg white) together. Pour into baked pie crust(s) and chill.

Omi’s Raspberry Cheesecake:

  • 1 3/4 c. graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 c. butter, melted (the original recipe calls for margarine)
  • 1 1/4c. sugar, divided
  • 24 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract (I use 3)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 c. dairy sour cream

Combine crumbs, butter and 1/4 c. sugar. Press on bottom and 1 1/2 inches up side of 8 or 9 inch spring-form pan; set aside.

With electric mixer on high beat cream cheese, remaining sugar, and vanilla until creamy (this is a great time to taste it too

Beat in eggs, one at a time. Blend in sour cream. Spread in prepared pan.

Bake at 350* for 60-70 minutes, or until center is set. Turn off oven, leave door slightly ajar. Leave cheesecake in oven 1 hour to prevent it from falling to much. remove from oven and cool completely. Pour raspberry sauce on top!

Raspberry sauce:

  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp. corn starch
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • frozenraspberries

Cook all together.

Pour onto cooled cheesecake.


Stumble Upon Toolbar
Related Posts with Thumbnails