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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Paper money (2)

The first printing of $2 bills was in 1862, just one year after the U.S. Treasury began printing paper money. Initially, the bill featured Alexander Hamilton, but in 1869, the first Secretary of the Treasury was replaced with Thomas Jefferson, whose portrait still graces the tender

 and the back has Declaration of Independence.

The seeming rarity of a $2 bill can be attributed to its low printing numbers as a Federal Reserve Note. Hoarding of the series due to lack of public knowledge of the $2 bill has resulted in very few bills seen in circulation.
Today, there is a common misconception by the general public that the $2 bill is no longer in production. According to the Treasury, it "receives many letters asking why the $2 bill is no longer in circulation". In response, the Treasury stated: "The $2 bill remains one of our circulating currency denominations... As of April 30, 2007 there were $1,549,052,714 worth of $2 bills in circulation worldwide."

Here is a interesting tidbit....Heather McCabe runs a blog, Two Buckaroo, where she documents the reactions of unsuspecting cashiers when she uses $2 bills in everyday transactions. I checked and her blog is still up and running if you are interested.

I believe hubby and I have a few of these put in the safe, how about you?

Friday, August 11, 2017

Tues night dinner

I seem to have gotten behind on my Tues night dinners so this is week before last....
I fixed it all just like the picture

Salisbury Steak
Makes 4 servings

I pound ground beef
1 egg
1 tbl. tomato paste
1 tbl. yellow mustard
2 tbsl. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 dry breadcrumbs
1/2 tsp pepper
salt to taste.

1 large onion diced (about 2 cups)
2-3 tbl. flour
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 1/2 cups beef broth
1 tbl. soy sauce

Combine all of the first ingredients and mix well. Form into four steak like patties. Melt butter in frying pan and brown well on each side (four or five min.). Remove and place on plate covered with foil.
Add the chopped onions to the pan and cook until caramelized, stir to coat. Sprinkle the flour  and cook another few seconds. Add the broth gradual stirring until thick. Add the meat patties back and heat till all is warm.

There is plenty of gravy for the mashed potatoes and the peas add just a smudge of sweetness. 

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Paper money

There is such history in our paper money that if you are bored one day you can just start looking it up and I guarantee you will be  captured for some time. Especially how the value's changed but I want to focus more on the actual notes for my adventure.
We will start at the beginning of course...

Well actually,the first bill tenderer was in 1862: issued as Legal Tender note with a Portrait of Salmon P.Chase, the Secretary of the Treasury under President Abraham Lincoln and many other designs came along until 1929 when all bills were made into a smaller design and this became our one dollar bill. You can read more about this here.

The portrait of George Washington on the current U.S. one-dollar bill is actually an unfinished work by the artist Gilbert Stuart.

Stuart painted several portraits of the first U.S. president, but the one that is on today’s one-dollar bill was commissioned by Washington’s wife, First Lady Martha Washington. In the course of painting, George Washington passed away.
This so-called paper money is in fact a cotton and linen blend, with red and blue minute silk fibers running through it. That is why if you wash it,you can dry it and use it again as it is actually material. The life span of a one dollar bill is approximately 4.8 years. Worn out money is shredded and recycled.
Have you ever wondered how the Presidents were chosen to be on our money?
It requires a Act of Congress,  Secretary of Treasury on the advise of the Engraving Office. After the design is chosen, it's reviewed by Fine Arts Commission. There was talk a while back about President Obama being put on a bill but only dead top leaders get their portraits on currency so this probably won't happen in our lifetime.

On the front you will see the United States treasury seal....

The green seal stamped over the word “one” to the right of Washington’s portrait is the United States Treasury Seal, which contains balancing scales to represent justice, a key (the symbol of office authority) and a chevron with thirteen stars to represent the 13 original states. This seal is found on all denominations of bills. All the other things like the K and the numbers represent different things and you can read up on it if you are interested but the back on the one dollar is far more interesting.

" In God we trust" was as added in 1957 to the back of all our bills. The pyramid....

The pyramid on the dollar bill represents strength and duration. Some interpret the missing top as a sign that the country wasn’t finished yet. Similarly, the western face of the pyramid is in a shadow while the front is lighted, which some say indicates that the nation hadn’t explored the West or figured out what it would do for Western civilization yet but When Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and John Adams gathered to design the seal (they were the first of three committees to make suggestions), they didn’t suggest a pyramid, but they did discuss an eye. They wanted the seal to have a symbol of divine providence, and the all-seeing eye shaped like the top of the pyramid is an ancient symbol of divinity.
In Latin above the pyramid reads “annuit coeptis,” which means “God has favored our undertaking and below the phrase “novus ordo seclorum,” which is interpreted as “a new order of the ages.” 

Across the bottom bricks of the pyramid are the letters “MDCCLXXVI.” These letters are the Roman numerals for 1776, the year America declared its independence.

Eagle's Shield

In front of the eagle—a uniquely American bird—is a shield, which is unsupported to signify Americans should rely on their own virtue. The horizontal top bar of the shield symbolizes the federal government, and it holds together yet is supported by vertical bars that represent individual states (13 at the time it was designed).
It’s no surprise that the stars over the eagle represent the 13 colonies. But what’s surrounding them? The official description says it’s glory “breaking through a cloud” above the eagle, but current versions have a cloud surrounding the rays.
The eagle holds an olive branch (representing peace) in its right talon and arrows (symbolizing war) in its left talon. But on silver coins from 1801 to 1807, the eagle held them in opposite talons. European diplomats and journalists claimed putting the arrows in the eagle’s dominant talon was a symbol of aggression, and called it a reason to start a war, so America decided to switch the peaceful symbol to the dominant side on the dollar.
Note: The number 13 is very unpopular due to the belief that it is bad luck and in fact many hotels have no number thirteen room yet isn't it interesting that here on the dollar bill the number 13—the original number of American states—appears many times. There are 13 arrows, 13 olive branch leaves, 13 olive fruits, 13 stars above the eagle, 13 steps of the pyramid, and 13 bars on the shield.

Our dollar bill is becoming as insignificant as our pennies these days but I hope that now, like me, you will never look at one quite the same.
Stay tuned for paper money 2...............................

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Tues. night dinner

Made a simply recipe.....

One pot pork dinner
2 large pork chops
Butter enough to brown chops in
1 large potato (sliced)
1 large onion (sliced)
2 carrots (sliced)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup water and milk
Shredded cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper to taste.

I seasoned the pork chops with garlic salt and then browned them in the butter.
Note: I used a mandolin to slice the vegetables so that they were all the same size.
Mix the soup and milk together and layer the veg. with the soup mixture ending with the pork chops on top and more soup. Add the 1/4 cup water and cover and simmer for 20 min or until cooked through. Sprinkle with the cheese and cover till it melts. This is easy and good and you can use pork, chicken or beef of your choice. Can also you can layer with the cheese if you like it more cheesy.

Tried this new recipe as our side dish:

It is yummy!!!!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Escaping the heat

Hubby and I made a little trip to Washington State for 5 days and thought I would share our trip with you.

My plan was to spend all our nights in the Silver Cloud Inn which is right on the Puget Sound. We spent one night and although the view was nice the train across the street that was required to blow its whistle many times every time it crossed the train crossing kept us awake most of the night. Hubby informed me in the morning.....we were moving! Had no idea where but I had planned on driving up to Gig Harbor just for a nice drive so we checked out and away we went.....

This is a map of the west side of Washington and as you can see there are many towns around the Puget sound.
We drove and drove and stopped in a little town called Poulsbo. We had been there before many years ago and I really like it because it had a Scandinavian feel to it. It has become much more commercialized but still a pretty place.
Can you read Poulsbo on the top of the clock?
A fitting mural.

Off we went and headed all the way up to Port Townsend at the very top and these were our views all along the way...............................................

So pretty and cool and more trees than you can even imagine.

We arrived at Port Townsend and out of frustration I told hubby just pull over right here so I could get the gps working and lo and behold it was a cute little Bistro so we went in and had a wonderful lunch. I asked the bartender if she could recommend a hotel that had a restaurant and bar and we went with the second one she mentioned called  The Old Alcohol Plant back down in Port Ludlow (about six miles south from where we were). Oh my did we hit the jackpot on this one. Out of the way, so quiet and unique and pretty...Originally built in 1910 it ran 24 hours a day sending all its alcohol to San Francisco servicing many ships but eventually went belly up and stood abandoned for 65 years when it was then turned into this lovely hotel. However it closed in 2011 and I do not know when it re-opened but I sure hope it is able to stay open for years to come.

Lots of little sitting areas

The restaurant
How about our vase on our table..
and oh the view....

There were very few people here so we got super service and had freshly caught halibut for dinner that was to die for. I tell you I was in heaven here but of course there was more to see so after a fantastic free breakfast of made to order bacon and eggs we decided to go all the way around the end of the state and take a peek at the Pacific ocean.

A peak is about all we got on our long drive as there were trees all along the way. We spent the night in a place called Ocean Crest Resort which was down above the 101 sign on the map and in the first point. The only thing I really liked here was the flowers along the walkway...

This one is taken from underneath as the flowers hung down.

It was a nice enough place but rather snooty and very overpriced for what they offered. I didn't take any pictures of the ocean because it was so depressing. The tide was out and I mean like a long way out and it was very dark and dreary. Not like the pacific coast that you would think of with big rocks and crashing waves.

Next morning we refused to eat breakfast at the hotel again and drove till we found an old fashioned McDonalds:) in a little town called Ocean Shores. Our next and last stop was at Little Creek Casino Resort just above Olympia. This place was huge and we stayed in the new section which had only been open 1 month! The best part was dinner. They had a little place called "The Seafood bar". It was a really small bar setting in the shape of a "u" and this was the menu..
Best sea food ever!!! and very friendly people.

Too soon it was time to go home and I snapped this picture as we were leaving..

See the raven on the top of the fountain? He was eating a clam:)

Made it home safe and sound and it was only 104 when we arrived instead of 120 and today (Mon.) it is only 94. We are having our monsoon season.....a treat if it includes rain and not dust:)


Thursday, July 13, 2017

Tues. night dinners

Kielbasa and Cabbage Skillet
Serves: 4
  • • 2 pounds fully cooked polska kielbasa, cut in half lengthwise, then cut into 2 inch pieces
  • • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • • 1 head cabbage, coarsely chopped
  • • 1 large sweet onion, cut into large pieces
  • • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • • 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
  • • 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  1. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick sauté pan over medium-high and add kielbasa. Cook, without stirring for 1 minute. Then stir occasionally for about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate with a slotted spoon.
  2. In the same pan with some of the rendered kielbasa fat, add the cabbage, onion, garlic, sugar, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and cook for about 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Mix in the vinegar and mustard; add the kielbasa back to the pan and cook for another 2 minutes to heat through. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.

This was very good but I added more oil to the cabbage and onion and covered it and let it cook until the cabbage was soft and then added the kielbasa back.

Sliced avocado rounded out our dinner.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Just sharing...

I recently attended a funeral for a friend of my husband and I and first off it was held on a Sunday. That was unusual for me but the most unusual thing was there was not one prayer said or one verse read from the Bible. Only praises for the man himself and the accomplishments of his life. He was a very nice man but this has left me with a heavy heart. Has anyone else attended a funeral like this?

Friday, July 7, 2017

Piggy Bank

Where did the Piggy Bank come from?


The piggy bank made its debut in Western Europe between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries, and replaced the clay jars that once housed spare change.

People named the pig-shaped bank after the orange clay, "pygg," from which it was crafted.

The bank retained its name long after artisans stopped using the clay to produce pottery, and eventually the name "pygg" assumed the name "pig bank," and then the name "piggy bank."

The individual who formed the first lump of "pygg" into the shape of a pig either had a sense of humor, or saw symbolism in using the pig as a model. One school of thought insists that the piggy bank is fed the "leftovers" of a ones money until it is fat enough to be smashed, and the money harvested.

Years ago, in German speaking countries, craftsmen gave their apprentices piggy banks to reward them for years of learning their respective trades.

This is my hubby's piggy bank as a little boy

This is a piggy bank my folks had and I am tempted to break it because these penny's would be pretty old but imagine what they will be worth to the grandkids or great-grandkids.

Years ago I had a big bottle in our family room where we put in penny's and you would be amazed how it adds up.

Anyone have a piggy bank?

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Just a little fun....

They used to use urine to tan animal skins, so families used to all pee in a pot. Once a day it was taken and sold to the tannery.
If you had to do this to survive, you were “piss poor.”

But worse than that were the really poor folks who couldn’t even afford to buy a pot. They “didn’t have a pot to piss in” and were considered the lowest of the low.

The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt. Hence the term, “dirt poor.”

The wealthy had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on the floor to help keep their footing.
As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until, when you opened the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entrance-way.
Hence, “a thresh hold.”

Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf, the family got the middle, and guests got the top, or the “upper crust.”

Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky. The combination would sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days.
Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial.
They were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake up.
Hence the custom of holding a “wake.”

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Tues night dinner

Wanted to hurry and post this recipe I used this past week because I know there are some of you enjoying home grown tomatoes and this is awesome!!

Cheesy tomato slices
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/4 cup mayo (real mayonnaise)
1 tsp. dried oregano
4 tomatoes
Slice the tomatoes into thick slices and place on a ungreased cookie sheet. Mix the rest of the ingredients together and spread on top of the tomato slices. Broil 3 min. until cheese is melted.
(hint....start with room tempt tomatoes)

Now as most of you know it is just me and hubby so I sliced the tomato as recommended and then just spread the mayo on them and sprinkled on everything else because I only used 1 large tomato. We will be eating this again:)      Also.......

This is my recipe idea that I also cooked....Two med.  zucchinis cooked in the microwave like a baked pot. with ends cut off and punctured. Cook until tender. Meanwhile sauté green onions and celery in the amount of butter that is recommended on a box of chicken stuffing mix. Slice the zucchinis and scoop out the insides and add to the butter/onion mixture. Add the recommended water and stuffing and let sit until all the water is absorbed. Then fill the zucchini shells and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bake or broil until all is hot.
Note: I used the whole box of the stuffing and froze what I didn't use for a up coming recipe  "Stuffed flank steak".


Monday, June 19, 2017

Tues. night dinner

I cooked "Open face chicken cordon bleu" for dinner last night but changed the recipe a bit.
First off I used only one chicken breast for the two of us and pounded it out to make it equal in thickness. Then drenched it in flour with salt and pepper before browning it on one side in butter in my frying pan. After turning it over I put the ham and then cheese on top and removed the pan covered from the burner and let it sit until the cheese melted. Was great!! No need to heat up the oven as it said to do since the meat was thinner and cooked quicker.

I also tried this...

It was very simple....canned pears, pepper, a small amount of miracle whip and cheese.
I didn't care for the miracle whip but did like the rest of it and it was a quick little side with all of it chilled ahead of time.

Also found a great lunch idea:
1 pkg. ramen noodle (flavor of your choice) with the seasoning packet.
1 pkg, frozen stir fry vegetables.
Bring two cups of water to a boil and add the above. Cook until veg. are tender and add soy sauce to taste. Yum!

Monday, June 12, 2017


Alexander Graham Bell wrote "When one door closes, another opens"

I have found that to be true in my life. As most of you know I knitted for "Babies in need" for a long time and the chapter here in my area closed so was in a turmoil as to what to do. I sold a few items on ebay but just didn't like it. I suddenly remembered a conversation I had with my daughter a few years ago and she talked about her friend having her mom in a rest home that was limited on many things so I decided to use up a lot of my yarn (not baby) and make slippers and lapghans and etc.  Here are a few that have been either knitted or crocheted...

and I used all kinds of scraps to make this lapghan

This is folded in half...

It has also come to my attention that care centers for dementia patients need twiddle muffs...
sample from Ravely:

and will try to make us some of these as well. Love being able to make things with just a little yarn.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Tues night dinner

Tried a new recipe and loved it!!!
Sheet pan shrimp boil which has not only shrimp but smoked sausage, baby potatoes, and corn.

I have never used old bay seasoning so had to buy that and it called for more garlic than I would ever use but I could have licked the pan lol. This is a very easy dinner and will be making it again. Just added some fresh fruit as a side dish and it was perfect.

Uplifting Wed. 29

Friday, May 26, 2017

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Tues night dinner

There were a couple of Tues. I didn't cook because of one reason or another. Last week I fixed some fried fish but the highlight was "homemade cauliflower with cheese sauce". We were licking the plates Hahaha.

Last night I fixed a new recipe and although it was not great it was good. Slow cooker creamy ranch pork chops.  I made home made mashed potatoes which were a treat and I am excited to use the left overs to make some lunches for myself. Think I will add some cooked rice, carrots and peas to the left over gravy which was good.
ps...I would add 1/2 tsp salt to the recipe.

Saturday, May 20, 2017


My daughter asked me what I would like to do for my birthday (May 16th) and I told her I wanted to go to the new OdySea Aquarium in Scottsdale. If you can imagine it is the largest aquarium in the southwest and holds more than 2,000,000 gallons of water and spans over 200,000 square feet and right in the middle of the desert! Go here for more information.

She picked me up and grabbed a picture before we left..
(I am so blessed to have her as my daughter)

Only a few pictures I took came out....

This beauty is a  Piranha

 Caught him sunbathing....

Who can resist turtles....

and these fascinating jelly fish...

Came home and she even brought a small cake, lit a candle and sang happy birthday to me!