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[tweetmeme] From The Classic Zucchini Cookbook: 225 Recipes for All Kinds of Squash I decided to try out

Tomato Zucchini Soup

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, minced
1 Small fennel bulb or 2 celery ribs, minced
1 carrot, minced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 ounce ham, minced (optional)
4 cups chicken broth or vegetable brother
2 cups diced and seeded tomatoes
2 cups grated zucchini
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium heat.  Add the onion, fennel, carrot, garlic, and ham.  (if using)  Saute until the vegetables are soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes.

2. Add the broth and tomatoes.  Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes

3. Add the zucchini and salt and pepper to taste.  Simmer until the zucchini is cooked through, about 15 minutes.

4. Serve hot.

Serves 4

I modified things a bit…

  • I used butter instead of olive oil
  • I opted to use 5 stalks of celery instead of the fennel or 2 celery ribs
  • I forgot to buy a carrot…
  • I used about 10 cloves of garlic
  • I didn’t use ham
  • I probably used about 6 cups of chicken broth and could probably use a bit more due to all the extra stuff I added – most of it absorbed the liquid….
  • I used a 24 oz. can of diced tomatoes
  • I used about 6 cups of zucchini
  • I added a 10 oz. container of sliced mushrooms
  • I also mixed in a pound of mini shell pasta

It came out really really yummy!
I highly recommend….

Do any of you have any good recipes that use ingredients from your garden?
I’d love it if you shared.
If you enjoy cooking, please feel free to join Rose’s Recipe Group over on Facebook.

Please comment and subscribe.

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One Year of Everyday with Rachel Ray for $4

Since I know so many of you enjoy cooking, I thought I’d pass this along to you!!

Right now you can get a 1 year subscription to Everyday with Rachael Ray for $4

The price is listed at $23.99 but use promo code FOOD and the price will drop to $4
I selected the 2 year option and it gave me the discounted price as well!
Thank you to Who Said Nothing in Life Is Free for passing along this great deal!!


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[tweetmeme] The Weekly Re-cap: I shared pictures of Giraffes and The Brooklyn Bridge that Michael took while we were in NYC last week. I showed you the new hard wood floor that my friends helped me install.  I shared a post I had written for the On The Edge blog called My Daughter The Chi-A-Poo.  We talked about uses for baking soda and I told you how you can enter to win a 40″ Flat Screen TV!!

The Weekly “oh crap!!”: My motorcycle tire is worn down to the cords (or would it be chords??) 😦

The Weekly Food: Zucchini, mushrooms, chicken and pasta – chicken alfredo – and a BFS Little Italy Sub.

The Weekly Amazing Fact: An adult giraffe’s kick is so powerful that it can decapitate a lion!!!

The Weekly Birthdays: Jessica Westervelt, Melinda Race Myers, Jen Swartz Lawrence, Angelos Tzelepis, John Striffler, Jeremy Kenny, Faith Barr, Jeff Filby, William Pillon and a HUGE Happy 30th Birthday to Avari Tears!!  I hope you all had wonderful birthdays – leave a comment to let us know how you celebrated your special day.

The Weekly Activity: Working on the poker run – route ideas, and donations oh my!!

The Weekly new people I’ve found on Twitter: BurtsBees, CarolinaPad, RozInCP, FamousFootwear, Ivan_Temelkov, and WebPartners

The Weekly Charity I’m Pimping: No Destination’s Poker Run to benefit The Ronald McDonald House

The Weekly Countdown:
Dutchess County Fair – 3 Days
No Destination Poker Run – 7 Days
Labor Day – 16 Days
Sons of Anarchy – 17 Days
Breaking Dawn Movie Premier – 454 Days

Do you have any big plans for this weekend?

Please comment and subscribe.

Koala image from: http://www.zanyimages.com/Have%20a%20Great%20Weekend/
Birthday Cake Image From: http://lyvvielimelight.blogspot.com/2008/05/this-is-shortys-4th-birthday-today.html
Twitter Bird Image From: http://gigglepotz.com/

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I’d be so happy about a floor!!!
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When I bought my house about 3 years ago, I reserved the extra bedroom as an office.   Within a couple of weeks I had the ugly 70s rubber-backed carpeting pulled up.  What a mess it made!  Whoever designed that type of carpet should refund everyone who has to deal with removing one!!  Michael scraped up as much of the dry rotted rubber as he could.  He was working at it for days.  It was quite a job.  Eventually he got around to painting the room, and then it sat… and sat… and waited… and wanted….  Until this weekend when finally the hardwood floor was installed.  I was cranky and impatient for 3 years because I wanted my office to be finished.  Trying to work in my sun-room isn’t the easiest thing in the world.  Well, take a look – I think it was worth the wait!!

A HUGE Thank You goes out to my friends Kevin & John for helping me get the job done!!  They even put up the molding for me!  They’re truly awesome!  And I’m so glad they had fun while they were doing it!  They made the job pass so quickly!  Good humor goes a long way!!

Isabella checking things out

While we were laying out the floor Michael said “A tree gave it’s life so you could have a nice floor.”  LOL!

This floor feels a little different....

Oh – before I forget – To Gail (Kevin’s wife) Kevin really really really wants an air nailer.  You should have seen the HUGE smile he got on his face when he started using it!!  I think he was sad when I had to return it to the rental shop!!  LOL!

"I don't have much traction...."

So, now that the floor is in – do any of you have ideas for office furniture? I can be picky, but here is the main criteria:

  • Can’t look like college dorm furniture
  • Needs to have file drawers that are deep
  • Needs to be STURDY and have good sliders on the drawers
  • Preferably wood and not laminate
  • Economical Price
  • Large desk surface space

I’d love for a company to come along with an office setup product review right about now 🙂
I hope you all had a wonderful weekend – the weather was beautiful for most of it!

Leave me a comment if you have any office furniture ideas and also while you’re at it, tell me if you did anything fun this weekend!

Please comment and subscribe.

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The basil was fresh out of our garden 🙂

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Today was one of those days where I was running around like crazy trying to get a lot of things done.  So I decided to make a meal that will last us for a couple of days.  We can probably get 10-12 servings out of this so we definitely have leftovers whenever we make it and it’s so easy to make.

What you need.

1 1/2 to 2 pounds of ground beef.  I used 93/7
2  packages of mushrooms (I think they were 10 oz. packages)
Butter
1 large can of whole peeled tomatoes
1 pound of pasta (I used rigatoni)
8-10 leaves fresh basil
Garlic Powder
Salt
Pepper
Shredded Mozzarella Cheese (optional)

Prepare pasta to directions on the box.  I make mine al dente.
Brown the beef in a deep frying pan.  Drain out any excess grease.

Sauteing The Mushrooms

In a separate pan I saute up the mushrooms in a couple teaspoons of butter.
(I cut the mushrooms into quarters.)
While sauteing, I add salt, pepper, and garlic powder to the mushrooms.


Next I put the can of tomatoes in the pan with the beef and carefully split the whole tomatoes with a spoon.
(Be careful, they’ll squirt all over your stove if you’re not gentle)
Once the tomatoes are heated, I add the mushrooms to the pan.


Tear up the basil leaves and add them along with some salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
Combine with the pasta and enjoy.
(I like to sprinkle some shredded mozzarella on mine)

I hope you enjoy it.
Please feel free to join Rose’s Recipe Group over on Facebook.
Do you have any great recipes you’d like to share?

Please comment and subscribe.

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I got this email from a friend of mine today.  I’m not sure if it works or not, but it’s worth a try!!

UPDATE: SNOPES

Apparently it doesn’t work, but does anyone know tricks that DO work??

How to Kill Mosquitos

I can’t wait to try this in the summer!

[]

I was at a deck party awhile back, and the bugs were having a ball biting everyone. A man at the party sprayed the lawn and deck floor with Listerine, and the little demons disappeared. The next year I filled?a 4-ounce spray bottle and used it around my seat whenever I saw mosquitoes. And voila! That worked as well.. It worked at a picnic where we sprayed the area around the food table, the children’s swing area, and the standing water nearby. During the summer, I don’t leave home without it….

[]

OUR FRIEND’S COMMENTS: I tried this on my deck and around all of my doors.

It works – in fact, it killed them instantly. I bought my bottle from Target and it

cost me $1.89. It really doesn’t take much, and it is a big bottle, too; so it is not

as expensive to use as the can of Bug-spray you buy that doesn’t last 30 minutes.

So, try this, please. It will last a couple of days. Don’t spray directly on a wood

door (like your front door), but spray around the frame. Spray around the window

frames, and even inside the dog house.

Now these are Good Mosquitos!!!

[]

Do you have any keep mosquitoes away or kill mosquito strategies?

Please comment and subscribe.

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Today in my inbox I got a link to The Worst Father’s Day Gifts Ever from the Huffington Post.
This particular item caught my attention.  How many people are just horrible with dates?
You can buy them 100 calendars and mark all the important dates in them and they’ll never open the calendar.
As the Huff Post captions it: “Oh Dad.  You’re always drinking on the go and forgetting people’s birthdays.”

I hope all the Dad’s out there had a Happy Father’s Day!

Do you have a system to remember important dates?  If so, what is it?

What is the worst Father’s Day Gift you ever received?

Please comment and subscribe.

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A friend of mine forwarded this to me today and there seems to be a lot of good tips.  I figured I’d pass this along!

Do you have other household tips to share??

  • Take your bananas apart when you get home from the store. If you leave them connected at the stem, they ripen faster.
  • Store your opened chunks of cheese in aluminum foil. It will stay fresh much longer and not get moldy.
  • Peppers with 3 bumps on the bottom are sweeter and better for eating. Peppers with 4 bumps on the bottom are firmer and better for cooking.
  • Add a teaspoon of water when frying ground beef. It will help pull the grease away from the meat while cooking.
  • To make scrambled eggs or omelets really rich, add a couple of spoonfuls of sour cream, cream cheese, or heavy cream, then beat them up and cook as usual.
  • For a cool brownie treat, make brownies as directed. Melt Andes mints in a double boiler and pour over warm brownies. Let set for a wonderful minty frosting.
  • Add garlic immediately to a recipe if you want a light taste of garlic and at the end of the recipe if your want a stronger taste of garlic.
  • Use mini snickers bars to make a delicious dessert. Simply chop them up with the food chopper. Peel, core and slice a few apples. Place them in a baking dish and sprinkle the chopped candy bars over the apples. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Serve alone or with vanilla ice cream. Yummm!
Reheating Pizza
Reheat leftover pizza in a non-stick skillet on top of the stove; set heat to med-low and heat till warm. This keeps the crust crispy. No soggy micro pizza. I saw this on the cooking channel and it really works.

Easy Deviled Eggs
Put cooked egg yolks in a zip lock bag. Seal, mash till they are all broken up. Add remainder of ingredients, re-seal, keep mashing it up mixing thoroughly, cut the tip of the baggy, squeeze mixture into egg. Just throw bag away when done. Easy clean up.

Extending Frosting
When you buy a container of cake frosting from the store, whip it with your mixer for a few minutes. You can double it in size. You get to frost more cake/cupcakes with the same amount. You also eat less sugar and calories per serving.

Reheating refrigerated bread
To warm biscuits, pancakes or muffins that were refrigerated, place them in a microwave with a cup of water. The increased moisture will keep the food moist and help it reheat faster.

Newspaper weeds-away
Start putting in your plants, work the nutrients in your soil. Wet newspapers, put layers around the plants overlapping as you go. Cover with mulch and forget about weeds. Weeds will get through some gardening plastic but they will not get through wet newspapers.

Broken Glass
Use a wet cotton ball or Q-tip to pick up the small shards of glass you can’t see easily.

No More Mosquitoes
Place a dryer sheet in your pocket. It will keep the mosquitoes away.

Squirrel Away!
To keep squirrels from eating your plants, sprinkle them with cayenne pepper (the plants, not the squirrels). 😉 The cayenne pepper doesn’t hurt the plant and the squirrels won’t come near it. (We found this works for deer as well to keep them out of our roses. Put some cayenne pepper in an old nylon stocking and tie the stocking to the rose bush. Saved the rose buds and we had beautiful roses last summer.)

Flexible vacuum
To get something out of a heat register or from under the fridge, add an empty paper towel roll or empty gift wrap roll to your vacuum. It can be bent or flattened to get into narrow openings.

Reducing Static Cling
Pin a small safety-pin to the seam of your slip and you will not have a clingy skirt or dress. Same thing works with slacks that cling when wearing panty hose. Place pin in seam of slacks and… ta da! Static is gone.

Measuring Cups
Before you pour sticky substances into a measuring cup, fill with hot water. Dump out the hot water, but don’t dry cup. Next, add your ingredient, such as peanut butter, and watch how easily it comes right out.

Foggy Windshield?
Hate foggy windshields? Buy a chalkboard eraser and keep it in the glove box of your car. When the windows fog, rub with the eraser! Works better than a cloth.


Reopening Envelopes
If you seal an envelope and then realize you forgot to include something inside, just place your sealed envelope in the freezer for an hour or two. Voila! It unseals easily.

Conditioner
Use your hair conditioner to shave your legs. It’s cheaper than shaving cream and leaves your legs really smooth. It’s also a great way to use up the conditioner you bought but didn’t like when you tried it in your hair.

Goodbye Fruit Flies
To get rid of pesky fruit flies, take a small glass, fill it 1/2 way with Apple Cider Vinegar and 2 drops of dishwashing liquid; mix well. You will find those flies drawn to the cup and gone forever!

Get Rid of Ants
Put small piles of cornmeal where you see ants. They eat it, take it ‘home,’ can’t digest it, so it kills them. It may take a week or so, especially if it rains, but it works and you don’t have the worry about pets or small children being harmed!

IMPORTANT INFO ABOUT CLOTHES DRYERS:
The heating unit went out on my dryer. The gentleman that fixes things around the house told us that he wanted to show us something and he went over to the dryer and pulled out the lint filter. It was clean. (I always clean the lint from the filter after every load of clothes.) He told us that he wanted to show us something; he took the filter over to the sink and ran hot water over it. The lint filter is made of a mesh material. I’m sure you know what your dryer’s lint filter looks like. Well…the hot water just sat on top of the mesh! It didn’t go through it at all! He told us that dryer sheets cause a film over that mesh and that’s what burns out the heating unit. You can’t see the film, but it’s there. It’s what is in the dryer sheets to make your clothes soft and static free…that nice fragrance, too. You know how they can feel waxy when you take them out of the box…well this stuff builds up on your clothes and on your lint screen. This is also what causes dryer units to potentially burn your house down. He said the best way to keep your dryer working for a very long time (and to keep your electric bill lower) is to take that filter out and wash it with hot soapy water and an old toothbrush (or other brush) at least every six months. That preserves the life of the dryer at least twice as long! How about that!?! Learn something new every day! I certainly didn’t know dryer sheets would do that. So, I thought I’d share!

Note: I went to my dryer and tested my screen by running water on it. The water ran through a little bit but mostly collected all the water in the mesh screen. I washed it with warm soapy water and a nylon brush and had it done in 30 seconds. Then when I rinsed it…the water ran right through the screen! There wasn’t any puddling at all! That repairman knew what he was talking about!

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