Archive for the ‘Birthday’ Category

Saturday’s Simple Recipe Page 12 Lasagna

October 9, 2015

This week I’m a day early with your weekly recipe. Today we are going to College Station for a Letterman’s get-together of the guys who played on the first team Gene Stallings coached at Texas A & M. Needless to say there will be many embellished stories going around the next couple of days. It will be fun.

Yesterday I spent the day making another garment to wear at Fall Market and Quilt Festival. Fabric manufacturers and pattern companies, who exhibit with us, are happy to give us their new fabric line and pattern line for us to make and wear.

My latest garment is made from Vintage Modern fabric designed by Amy Barickman for RJR Fabrics. The pattern is Over the Top Tunic from Indygo Junction by Amy Barickman. Our Education staff will also be wearing a garment of their choice made in this same fabric line and color way. It will be easy to identify us on the days we wear them. Look for us on the third floor of the George R. Brown Convention Center. That’s where all the classes are held for 10 days. Come visit me in room 340AB. I would love to see you.

tunic

Over the Top Tunic Front

tunic

Over the Top Tunic Back

I have been sewing and creating since I was a little girl. Every where we have lived I have found friends who also love to create with their hands.

The recipe this week came from Emily Waldron, (from her grandmother) my best friend while Tommy was going to graduate school in 1969-71 in Boston. We each had a young son and did not work outside the home. We got together once a week, alternating our homes while our husbands were in school. We each had only one car so the husbands would come to the house where we were for dinner, and then we’d go home after dinner. It was always a fun day making crafts and dinner together while our sons napped and played with each other.

Best Ever Lasagna

Makes two 9″ X 13″ casseroles

Instructions

Brown 

2 lbs. ground meat

4 crushed garlic cloves

Add

12 oz. can tomato paste

28 oz. can tomatoes diced with juice

½ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. pepper

2 tablespoons Oregano

Cover and simmer 30 minutes until slightly thickened.

Cook

1 lb. Lasagna noodles. Drain.

Mix 

3 eggs

dash salt and pepper

¼ cup dried parsley

30 oz. Ricotta cheese

Fill casseroles with alternate layers of 

Meat sauce

Noodles

Egg and Ricotta cheese mixture

Cheeses (2 pkgs. Grated Mozzarella and 2 pkgs. Parmesan)

Start with a thin layer of meat sauce. End with sauce and cheese. Cover with foil. Bake at 375 degrees for 1 hour. Remove foil last 20 minutes of baking.

This is a great recipe to make for a group of 12. Serve with a green salad and chocolate dessert.

It’s my birthday this month, and I plan to celebrate every opportunity I get. My chemo treatments are working, and I’m thrilled to have another birthday.

birthday

Happy Birthday to Me

Lots of love, hugs and kisses until next week, Judy

 

 

 

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Saturday’s Simple Recipe Page 5 Cocoa Cake

August 22, 2015

Tonight we are going to a Sunday school party at the home of two of our members. We have a fun group of about 25 who gather together to socialize once a month. Our lessons on Sunday mornings are Bible based. Right now, we are studying You Will Get Through This by Max Lucado. Tommy and I always enjoy his books, our class for study and socializing.

Sunday school

Sunday School Party in Our Back Yard

The parties are pot luck. We are taking a dessert, which I will make after I finish this blog post. Even though it’s a Greek theme, I have chosen to make my Chocolate Sheet Cake. This has been a favorite with this group, and it’s easy to make.

My sister, Joanie, gave me this recipe. In San Antonio in the 1960’s, people called  it “Sheath” cake. Did we not understand? No matter. I’m glad I received the recipe from my kind sister, Joanie Olafson McDonald, before she died in a car accident on June 1, 1989. Try not to eat too much of the icing before it’s on the cake. It tastes like yummy fudge.

ingredients

Ingredients for Cake and Frosting

Cake

Sift together in mixing bowl 

2 cups flour

2 cups sugar

Put in sauce pan  

4 rounded T cocoa

1 cup water

2 sticks margarine or butter (1 cup)

Bring this to a boil. Pour over sugar mixture. Stir well.

Add  

2 eggs, slightly beaten

1 heaping teaspoon cinnamon

1 tsp. vanilla

½ cup butter milk to which has been added ½ tsp baking soda

Mix well. Pour into well greased and floured 8” X 12” cake pan.

Bake at 350 degrees 30 to 35 minutes.

Ice cake in pan while it is still hot.

Icing

Melt and bring to boil 

1 stick margarine (1/2 cup)

3 rounded tablespoons cocoa

6 tablespoons sweet milk or butter milk (scant ½ cup)

Remove from heat, beat and add

1 box powdered sugar (16 oz.)

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup broken (not chopped) pecans

Mix well. Pour over center of cake in pan. It will melt to the sides.

cake

Chocolate Sheet Cake

And now for a lagniappe…a little something extra.

This week was Tommy’s birthday. We celebrated Thursday night by going to a Skeeters game with our daughter and her three children. They came to our house after the game for birthday cake, singing and lots of laughs.

For many years Tommy requested a cake mix for Boston Cream Pie for his birthday. It’s a cake, so I’m not sure why it was called a pie. The cake mix hasn’t been available for a long time. Recently I found a recipe on Pinterest for Boston Cream Poke Cake. It taste just like his old favorite. So I made it for his birthday cake. So here’s your lagniappe…the recipe I used.

Boston Cream Poke Cake

Ingredients

1 box Betty Crocker Super Moist Cake Mix (plus ingredients on box)

2 small boxes (3.4 oz.) Jello Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix

4 cups whole milk

1 container Duncan Hines Classic Chocolate Creamy frosting

Instructions

Prepare cake in 13″ X 9″ pan according to box directions. Let cool in pan.

Use wooden spoon handle to poke many holes evenly across the cake.

Combine milk and pudding mix and whisk until well blended.

Pour pudding over cake making sure it gets down into the holes.

Refrigerate cake for an hour to allow pudding to settle and set up.

Open frosting container and remove foil seal.

Microwave for 15 seconds and stir. Repeat this until frosting is pourable.

Pour over pudding layer and spread with spatula to cover completely.

Refrigerate for at least another hour.

happy

Happy Birthday, Dear Husband

And a Happy Birthday to all of you, my dear friends, whenever your special day arrives. I hope someone makes you a cake. Have a good week until we meet again. Hugs, Judy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Put Me In Coach

May 3, 2015

“God has given me this day to use as I will. I can waste it or use it for good. What I do today is very important because I am exchanging a day of my life for it.” This is a quote from Bear Bryant (1913-1983) who was an American college football player and coach. He was best known as the longtime head coach of University of Alabama’s football team.

Team sports have always been a part of my life. Growing up in the 60’s, girls were not encouraged to play sports so I was never on a team, but attended  my brothers’ football and baseball games. Their games were always a family occasion. My high school sweetheart, Tommy Murrah, whom I married, played high school and college football. He didn’t stop there, but played softball on adult recreational teams for many years. Once our children were old enough to play team sports, he coached their teams.

Now, all five of our grandchildren have tried their hand at playing baseball or softball including our three granddaughters. Two of those girls have chosen their teams on stages rather than on the field. We have spent a great part of the spring attending activities that involved our grandchildren.

Lindsey Huebner turned 12 years old the end of March. Our three grandchildren who live near-by traditionally get a day of shopping and over-night at Grammy and Granddaddy’s house without their siblings for their birthday. After we attended one of her softball games, she came to our house for the Easter week-end.

Lindsey on Jaguar softball team

Lindsey ready for a game on the Jaguars

After our day of mall shopping and a chair massage, we began cooking for ten family members coming for Easter lunch.

Lindsey loved the chair massage

Lindsey’s first chair massage

I hadn’t set the table or decorated it for Easter, so Lindsey did most of it. I love teaching our granddaughters the things Grammy does. I hope they will remember when they have their own homes. What a precious time it was to have her with us for fun, work, and church service.

Easter Table Set

Easter Table Set

After lunch it was Easter egg hunt time in our backyard. Our egg hunters ranged from 7-17 years old.

Easter Baskets Full

Easter Baskets Full

Our younger son and his wife, Michelle, live in Long Beach, California. She is expecting their first baby this month. Baby “T” will make six grandchildren for us. We are so blessed. Since they could not come to us, we went to see them for four days of loving them and fun. We attended a baby shower on a gorgeous California Saturday in the park. The hostesses outdid themselves with a beautiful array of all kinds of Tea Party treats for the “T” party.

Beautiful Table

Beautiful Table

We know Troy and Michelle’s baby boy’s name will start with a T, but Troy says he has to meet him and shake his hand before he’s sure what his first name will be. We know he will play sports because Troy has already checked-out the ice skating rink in Long Beach where they can play hockey. Troy has played one sport or another all his life. So the quilt I made for the baby is just that…all kinds of sports. I found a long arm quilter, Karen Shively, in my neighborhood,  who quilted it for me.

quilt

Quilt for “T” Murrah

When Troy and my husband are together you can be sure there will be a ballgame involved. We spent one afternoon at Dodgers Stadium which was a first for Tommy. Michelle did not grow-up going to ballgames, like our family, but she has adapted beautifully and seems to enjoy them.

game

Baby “T” at his First Game

Late last month we made a trip to Dallas to see our older son’s family. Madison Murrah played Alice in “You Can’t Take It With You” for her senior play. We loved seeing her perform one last time as a student of Ursuline Academy at Jesuit Theater.

Madison

Encore Madison

It was great to be with our older son, Todd, and his family for a couple of days.

todd

Todd Murrah and family

Tyler Murrah was supposed to play a baseball game while we were there, but it was rained-out. We’re so proud of him. He has played on the freshman baseball team at Jesuit in Dallas this year. The Freshman season is over, but he along with two other Freshmen, were pulled up to Varsity for the playoffs. He won’t get in any games but will get to keep practicing with them.

Tyler

Tyler Gets a Single

We spent much of yesterday with our daughter, Holly, and her family. Ashton, who is seven years old, is playing machine-pitch baseball. His coach is quite a motivator. The kids love his antics and team spirit.

Ash

Ashton & Coach Ron

Sydney joined us later in the day, after attending a birthday party. She tried baseball several years ago, but decided she likes the stage better. She is in competitive cheer and choir. Her spring choir program was this past week. I loved watching her moves. She has lots of fun singing and performing. She’s in the center with the sunglasses.

Sydney

Sydney Huebner

Yesterday, I also gave Holly a quilt I started for her after she graduated from Texas A & M in 1995. It’s made from her sorority t-shirts. Michelle Henson did a great job long arm quilting it for me. Aw, come on. I know you have lots of quilts that marinate before they are completely cooked.

holly

Holly’s Quilt

Tomorrow will be a red-letter day for me. I will start chemo therapy at MD Anderson Hospital. I was diagnosed with Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS) eight years ago. Luckily, I have not needed any treatment for my low hemoglobin until this past month. At that time I was given two pints of blood and had another bone marrow aspiration and biopsy. If the MDS goes untreated research shows that I’ll have AML in a year.

My oncologist, Dr. Guillermo Garcia-Manero, is a Professor in the Department of Leukemia at MD Anderson University of Texas. His main academic and clinical objective is to contribute to significantly better outcomes for patients with Myelodysplastic Syndrome. Dr. Garcia-Manero is the Chief of the Section of MDS in the Department of Leukemia at MD Anderson Cancer Center. One hundred percent of his research and clinical efforts are devoted to patients with MDS. So when he suggested I start a clinical trial taking Dacogen by capsule, my family and I agreed.

Tommy and I will be at MD Anderson very early tomorrow morning for at least eight hours. We’ll do the same each day through Saturday this week. The trial will last for three months and I will be closely monitored. I feel I’m in the best hands possible.

My blessings have been overwhelming as you can see by the joy our family brings to us. My prayer is that I’ll continue to see the growth of our loving children, their spouses, and children. If you could offer the same prayers for me, I’d be ever so grateful. Much love, Judy

coach

Put Me In Coach. I’m ready to play today.

 

 

 

Happy Birthday, Hubby

August 22, 2013

It’s August and it’s birthday time for my hubby.  So, the question is, what do you want for birthday lunch? His request is King Ranch Chicken and Yellow Cake with Chocolate icing. The cake is easy. It’s from a Duncan Hines mix. I don’t make King Ranch Chicken Casserole often because it’s a night- before process if you want it for lunch. It must have turned out really well, since just about everyone had seconds including Julie, our daughter-in-law. She doesn’t go for seconds unless it’s red Jello with fruit cocktail and bananas with whipped topping. It’s lunch time, and the first of our family start to arrive. Our oldest son Todd and family arrive from McKinney, Texas.

Todd and Family with Dad

Todd and his wife  Julie, and son Tyler, and daughter Madison with Tommy

Oh, here’s the King Ranch Chicken Casserole recipe, if you like.

Ingredients: 2 lbs. chicken white meat, 10 corn tortillas, one can cream of mushroom soup, one can cream of chicken soup, one can Rotel tomatoes, 1 cup chicken broth, 2-3 cups shredded cheddar cheese, 3 garlic cloves chopped, 1 onion chunked, 3 stalks celery cut into 3 pieces each

Instructions: Low boil chicken with skin on with garlic, onion, and celery added to water. Cook until chicken starts to fall away from bone. Remove chicken to cool. Strain onion and celery from broth. Puree in blender with 1/3 cup chicken broth. Refrigerate until ready to use. Strain 1 cup chicken broth and reserve in refrigerator. Discard chicken skin. When chicken is cool to touch debone chicken and cut into chunks.

One hour before serving combine in medium saucepan pureed mixture, soups, Rotel tomatoes, and chicken broth to make sauce. Heat to a slow boil.

In large rectangular casserole dish alternate layers of heated sauce, torn tortillas, chicken, and cheese. End with cheese. Bake uncovered in 350 degree oven for 30-45 minutes. It should be bubbling before removing from oven. Serve with green salad, tortilla chips, and salsa.

King Ranch Chicken Casserole is ready to take out of the oven, and Julie has made the salad. Yippee! Our second family arrives from Seabrook, Texas, and we can eat birthday lunch.

Holly and Scott

Our daughter Holly and her husband Scott Huebner

Lunch is finished and now it’s birthday cake delivered to Granddaddy by our FIVE grandbabies. We thank God for them every day. We are so blessed.

Birthday Cake with Grandkids

Blow out the candles, Granddaddy

Here are our boys…Tyler Murrah who is 13 and about to start the 8th grade and football plus Ashton Huebner who is the baby for now at 5 years old and starts kindergarten in a few days.

Our Boys: Tyler & Ashton

Our Boys: Tyler and Ashton

Our girls…so much fun for a Grammy in her sewing room. They are Lindsey Huebner, our softball player, who is 10 going into her last year of elementary school, and Sydney Huebner who would rather do cartwheels than anything else, but will start third grade and Madison Murrah who is 16 and thinking about colleges and her next theater performance as she starts her Junior year at Ursuline Academy in Dallas.

Our Girls: Lindsey, Sydney, & Madison

Our Girls: Lindsey, Sydney, & Madison

Lunch celebration is complete and Todd takes over the clean-up while I can visit with the girls. I love it when someone else cleans-up. Don’t you? Thank-you, Todd.

Mom cooked/Todd washed

Mom cooked/Todd cleaned-up

Dishes done and Todd was ready to take his Dad and son away to see an open scrimmage of their alma mater, Texas A & M in College Station. The  Huebner family had to be on their way to another birthday party, so the rest of the afternoon was spent introducing Julie and Madison to Downton Abbey. I don’t think I was able to make fans of them, however. How could that be?

Aggie Scrimmage

Tyler and Todd at Aggie Scrimmage

The next day, August 18, was Tommy’s real birth date. Todd and Julie took off, and Madison and Tyler stayed with us for a few days. They have spent a little summer time with us every summer, and we feel so fortunate that as teenagers they still think it’s fun to come for a stay at Grammy and Granddaddy’s house. They started the day with a little piano playing and singing for the birthday boy. Tyler still rides around the house on “Giraffey,” an inside riding toy we have had since Madison was a toddler. All five grandchildren drag it out of the closet each time they are here.

Entertainment for Granddaddy

Entertainment for Granddaddy

We took Granddaddy to the movie to see “Jobs” a movie all four of us highly recommend about Steve Jobs, the Apple creator. After a late dinner of Tommy’s bar-b-que ribs, we had ice cream (Yes, we are huge fans of Bluebell ice cream.) and cake again. Tommy got to blow out candles again on his “real” birthday with a little help from Madison and Tyler. He’s had lots of wishes come true in the last 9 months, but maybe there’s more in store. As we started our traditional Monopoly marathon, a Happy Birthday phone call came from our youngest son, Troy, who lives in LA. Now Tommy’s birthday was complete with good wishes from all three of our children.

Second round of cake

Second round of cake

There was still more fun for Madison and Tyler to have on their vacation with us. We spent several hours at Zuma Fun Center playing miniature golf, arcade games, and riding go-carts. We also saw “Sea Monsters” and they played Laser Tag. They are such fun-loving, happy kids that we were sorry when it was time for them to go back home.

Fun Day in the Sun

Fun Day in the sun

So it’s Happy Birthday to my hubby. We all hope it’s your best year ever.

Hot Rod Madison

Hot Rod Madison

We know it will be ever-changing with our growing family as the year zooms faster than we can imagine. As I’ve said before “Family is Best” and always will be at the top of our list. Love you all, and thanks for making Dad’s birthday such a happy one.

Happy Birthday to my friends out there when it’s your special day, too. Hugs and stitches, Judy


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