Yesterday’s Turkey Is Today’s Soup

My mother was a very good cook.  Not a chef mind you.  A cook.

I have her cookbook of all sorts of practical, yummy recipes.  Mom got most of her recipes from magazines and from the newspaper– then tweaked them.

Here is one of Mom’s recipes.  I have no idea of the original source, but do know that this makes a very tasty, rather healthy soup.


Split Pea Soup With Ham & Turkey

2 carrots (or more)

2 celery stalks

1 medium size onion

2 small turnips (or use cabbage)

1-16 oz. package of dry green split peas

2 Tablespoons salad oil (or less)

1/4 lb cooked ham, diced

2 teaspoons salt (or omit entirely)

1/4 teaspoon allspice

1 bay leaf

1/4 teaspoon cumin (more or less depending on preference)

8 cups water

1 lb cooked turkey cut into 1/2 inch pieces


1.  Dice carrots and celery.  Chop onion.  Peel and dice turnips (or chop cabbage if using that instead of turnips).  Rinse peas with cold water and discard any stones or shriveled ones.

2.  In pot with salad oil in it– over medium heat– cook carrots, celery, onion and turnips (or cabbage) until tender crisp.  Stir in peas, ham, allspice, bay leaf, cumin and the water.  Over high heat cook to boiling.  Reduce temperature to low, cover and simmer 45 minutes.

3.  Stir in turkey.  Cook 10-15 minutes longer to blend flavors.

Makes 6 main dish servings (huge) or 8 soup servings (normal size)


[FYI, when I make this recipe I use cabbage, half the recommended amount of salt, and triple the amount of cumin.  But you do whatever suits your fancy.]

[Also, in recent years I’ve made this soup substituting leftover rotisserie chicken from the grocery for the turkey.  I’m sure that Mom would approve.]

Something Fun To Do

Go here.  Fill in the empty block with words.  Make your words meaningful, if you so choose.  And when you hit your 100th word, you’ll get your very own cute kitten photo!

[Hey!  I didn’t say this was something valuable to do, I just said that it was fun.  And if you’re not the one cooking dinner, what else have you got to do?]





Top 5 Ways In Which I Am Not Like The 112th U.S. Congress

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#5The U.S. government does not pay my salary.  Taken one step further this means that: U.S. taxpayers do not pay me to do nothing.  I do nothing for free.

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#4I choose my friends wisely.  I don’t associate with insincere, deceitful, conniving corporations lobbyists dweebs.  I am able to find friends who are truthful, straightforward and clear about what matters the most in this life.

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#3I do not define myself by group affiliation.  I am a free spirit in suburbia.   This means that I do my own thing in a world known for its ordinariness.  I am not a slave to fitting in with others– and hiding behind any group’s rhetoric.

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#2I think for myself and do not need external validation to motivate me to keep going.  This means that I do not hold a press conference every time I burp, sneeze or fart.  In fact, I do not hold press conferences at all because I know that people do not care about how things are going for me– they care about what I can do for them.

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#1I get things done.  Yep, it’s a fact.  I see a problem…  I understand how the problem came to be… I define the problem… and then [this is crucial] I SOLVE THE PROBLEM.  I finish things before I take a vacation.  I do not whine about how difficult it is to do things.  I just git r done.  Like the grown-up that I am.

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… Can you say the same things, oh ye members of the 112th U.S. Congress?

Okay, Let’s Be Clear Here

I was shopping in the Lands’ End section of Sears last week.  Working in the section were two friendly woman who helped me find sizes and colors.  They were great.

Because of their help I found lots to buy– which meant that it took them a long time to take the shoplifter tags off my clothes, to fold the clothes, to swipe the price tags, to subtract the sale discounts, to re-calculate the total, and then to put the clothes into the shopping bags.

Naturally we got talking while all this was going on.

We agreed that Lands’ End 100% cotton tops– of all sorts– are just about the best thing ever.  I mentioned that most of my Lands’ End tops are for daily wear, but that I also buy a few larger ones to use a tops with flannel jammie bottoms.  I find that the turtlenecks, in particular, are very cozy in bed at night in the winter.

Well, both women began to laugh– and out came a story.

Earlier that day a customer had said the same thing that I did… and then she had gone on to explain in-depth why she liked to wear these tops to bed.  Apparently, she liked the Lands’ End 100% cotton tops because that meant when she got up in the morning she didn’t have to get dressed.

Instead, she just put on a large sweatshirt over her sleeping ensemble, added shoes and a coat– then went out the door on her daily errands to places like the grocery, drug store, post office.  In fact they told me, she said that winter was her favorite time of year because she could wear the same clothes for 24 hours straight!


People tell me lots of stuff, and usually I kind of have an inkling of where the story is going, but this one caught me unawares.  I started laughing wondering if these women thought I might be doing the same thing!  I couldn’t talk fast enough to assure them that I don’t wear the same Lands’ End 100% cotton shirt around the clock.

Nope, not me.  I, at least, keep my Lands’ End 100% cotton shirts divided between daytime wear– and nighttime wear.  ‘Cuz I’m classy like that.

[Hello FTC!  Long time no see.  As usual I want to assure you that I didn’t receive any monetary consideration for writing about something that I just happen to like.  So you need not concern yourself with me and my sweet little bloggy.  Okie dokie, then?]

Late Autumn

Over the course of this last week the colors have changed around here.

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There are a few last shots of color here and there.  God bless red roses.  I try to memorize the color so that during the bleak months I can remember it– and keep my spirit alive.  Do you do this too?

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This is what is left of our Happy Returns Daylilies.  I love these plants.  In the summer their lemony yellow flowers make me smile.  And now they remind me to have faith in the process.  Bright colors will return again.  Yes?

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The water on the glass-top green-rimmed table is doing a great job of revealing the bleakness of the woods beyond.  I love reflections.  What is real and what is imagined?

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And then there is the woods back of the house.  The leaves on the trees are all down now.  I like how easy it is to see the grayish brown trunks of the trees.  Very visual and organic.  There are no straight lines in nature, eh?

The Story Of How We Got A Color TV

Yesterday after I posted two b&w commercials, I got thinking about the events that lead up to my mother finally allowing us to have a color TV.  I don’t usually talk about my childhood, but just this once I’ll tell you more than you’ll probably ever want to know about me– and how it came to be that my mother allowed the two of us to have an extravagance such as a color TV.

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In May of my freshman year of high school we had unusually intense spring thunderstorms.  Very windy, very rainy, with lots of lightning.

Our house didn’t have cable so to get reception our TV had an antennae attached to it.  One night after Mom and I had gone to bed a bolt of lightning hit the antennae, came into the house, and went straight to the TV (which was off at the time).  In an instant, the old b&w TV caught on fire.

The burning TV sounded like someone making popcorn.  In fact, when I heard the popping sound I figured that Mom couldn’t sleep and had got up to make herself a snack.  Naturally, I wanted some of it so I hurried into the kitchen to get something to eat.

But what I found in the kitchen was my mother on the phone with our small town fire department.  They responded quickly and almost the entire fire department arrived to watch our TV burn up.  This was because most of the firemen had heard about how old TVs could catch on fire, but had never actually seen one in real life on fire, so this was a learning experience for them.

They dragged the TV outside into the rain and then axed it to pieces.  There was almost no damage to the inside of the house, but the old b&w TV was toast.

Weird as it is to say, the dramatic end of our TV got Mom and me laughing every time we talked about it.  The whole absurd thing was funny to us.

Already that year: 1) my dad had died after a lengthy illness;  2) I’d had major surgery on my knee;  and 3) while driving into the garage Mom had accidentally run over the family cat [who went on to live a very long and grouchy life].  So having your TV burst into flames seemed rather minor to us.  Just something to laugh about.  Endlessly.

Which was just as well considering that Mom had lots of bills to pay– and getting a new TV was not a priority.  So for the next twelve months we lived in a very quiet home with only the radio, playing cards, boxed games and books for entertainment.

Eventually Mom decided that it was time for us to get a new television.  She and I went to some local furniture/appliance store where we bought a brand-new top-of-the-line [Magnavox, maybe?] color TV.

Our first one.  Finally.

Which One?

When I was a little girl Saturday morning was for watching cartoons and commercials.  On a black and white television, of course.

[My mother refused to buy one of the “new” color TVs until our old one quit working.  Let me assure you that those old b&w TVs were very well-made.  But I digress… ]

I found the two commercials below on YouTube.  While I don’t remember either one, I’m putting them here as examples of what was on TV way back then.

[Or maybe a little bit before my way back then.  But you get the gist of what I’m showing you here, right?  Something in black and white.]

After watching both commercials I’ve decided that I prefer one of the characters over the other one.

So, how about you?  Are you on Team Sugar Bear [“Bet your booties, Granny”]?

Or are you on Team Trix Rabbit  [“Oh, rubba, rubba, dub”]?

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