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Another Idea for Turkey


For those of you who are still grappling with leftover turkey, here is another recipe that you might want to try. I think it is just about the ideal after-turkey-dinner recipe because it contains turkey, mashed potatoes, and green beans. I'm not sure where this recipe came from, but it's very tasty.

Green Bean and Turkey Casserole
2 cups cubed cooked turkey or chicken
2 cups fresh or frozen cooked green beans
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/3 cup milk (plus additional for moistening mashed potatoes)
approximately 2 cups cooked mashed potatoes (make extra the day of your feast)
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup French fried onions (from can or bag)

picture of casserole in the making

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix turkey, green beans, soup, and milk. Pour into a two quart greased casserole dish. (If you have a little leftover stuffing you can add this too.) Moisten mashed potatoes with a little milk and whisk to fluff them up. Spread on top of turkey/green bean mixture. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake about 25 mins. or until bubbly. Top with french fried onions and return to oven for about 5 more minutes. Enjoy!

picture of casserole done

Since Rob always gets to post pictures of our grandson Drew, I'm going to take advantage of doing a post to put out a picture we took yesterday while our little guy was napping with his friend (Curious) George - who makes a great pillow!

picture of Drew and George napping

Becka

Recycling Your Christmas Turkey


This is the first guest post by my wife Becka. Enjoy!
Rob

I have always wanted to make bread bowls. I saw a recipe in a cookbook years ago, but just never quite got around to trying them – until this year. A few weeks ago I saw a recipe for Stuffing Bread Bowls on the King Arthur Baker's Banter Blog. This is a wonderful web-site with many great recipes for all of you who like to bake. I filled the bowls with Turkey à la King using up some of our leftover Thanksgiving turkey. Nora, Rob, and I all really liked them, so I am planning to have them again this weekend to help with the remnants of our Christmas turkey.

So, for all of you who need ideas for leftover turkey, here is one you might like to try. The bowls would also be delicious with just about any type of thick soup or stew.

Stuffing Bread Bowls
1 1/4 cups lukewarm water
1/4 cup oil
3 cups bread flour
1/2 cup semolina (you could substitute cornmeal)
2 tsps. poultry seasoning
1 1/4 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 cup dry potato flakes
2 Tbsps. powdered milk
2 1/2 tsps. yeast
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds

Combine all ingredients in bread machine in the order given. Run the machine on the dough cycle.

After the dough has completed the cycle divide into 6 pieces. Round into balls.

picture of the shaped dough

Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and let rise one hour. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 mins. Let cool completely.

picture of the baked balls

Slice off the tops of the bowls and then carefully pull out the insides to form a "bowl". The bread that is removed can be dried in the oven and then ground into herbed bread crumbs.

picture of the hollowed bowls

Chicken or Turkey à la King
1 can (6 oz.) sliced mushrooms, drained
1 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup flour
2 tsp. chicken bouillon
1/4 tsp. white pepper
2 cups light cream or evaporated skim milk
2 cups water
2 cups cubed cooked chicken or turkey
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper (or about 1/4 c.pimentos from a jar of olives)

In a large skillet cook and stir the mushrooms and red pepper in the melted margarine for about 5 mins. Blend in the flour and pepper. Cook over low heat until the mixture is bubbly. Stir in the water, the cream or evaporated skim milk, and the peas. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil and stir one minute. Stir in the chicken or turkey. Heat through and serve hot. This was wonderful in the bread bowls, but is also good on biscuits.

How about you — any new ideas for using up leftover ham or turkey?

Whatever you will be eating on Christmas day or the days thereafter I hope you will have a blessed Christmas as we contemplate our Lord's sacrifice in coming to earth.

Becka

News Flash from the North Pole


picture of Bubba Claus

(The following is a note from Santa Claus.)

Dear y'all,

I regret to inform you that, effective immediately, I will no longer serve the States of Georgia, Florida, Virginia, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi, Texas, and Arkansas on Christmas Eve.

Due to the overwhelming current population of the earth, my contract was renegotiated by North American Fairies and Elves Local 209. As part of the new and better contract I also get longer breaks for milk and cookies, so keep that in mind.

However, I'm certain that your children will be in good hands with your local replacement, who happens to be my third cousin, Bubba Claus. His side of the family is from the South Pole. He shares my goal of delivering toys to all the good boys and girls; however, there are a few differences between us.

Differences that have been noted:

1. There is no danger of the Grinch stealing your presents from Bubba Claus. He has a gun rack on his sleigh and a bumper sticker that reads "These toys insured by Smith and Wesson."

2. Instead of milk and cookies, Bubba Claus prefers that children leave an RC Cola, pork rinds, and a MoonPie on the mantle.

picture of a Bubba Claus dog

3. Bubba Claus' sleigh is pulled by floppy-eared, flyin' coon dogs instead of reindeer. I made the mistake of loaning him a couple of my reindeer one time, and Blitzen's head now overlooks Bubba's fireplace.

4. You won't hear "On Comet, on Cupid, on Donner and Blitzen" when Bubba Claus arrives. Instead, you'll hear, "On Earnhardt, on Andretti, on Elliott and Petty."

5. "Ho, Ho, Ho!" has been replaced by "Yee Haw!" And you also are likely to hear Bubba's elves respond, "I her'd dat!"

6. As required by Southern highway laws, Bubba Claus' sleigh has a Yosemite Sam safety triangle on the back with the words "Back Off."

7. The usual Christmas movie classics such as "Miracle on 34th Street" and "It's a Wonderful Life" will not be shown in your negotiated viewing area. Instead, you'll see "Boss Hogg Saves Christmas" and "Smokey and the Bandit IV" featuring Burt Reynolds as Bubba Claus and dozens of state patrol cars crashing into each other.

8. Bubba Claus doesn't wear a belt. If I were you, I'd make sure you, the wife, and the kids turn the other way when he bends over to put presents under the tree.

9. Fun Christmas songs have been sung about me like "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town" and "Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer." This year, songs about Bubba Claus will be played on all the AM radio stations in the South. These song titles will be "Bubba Claus Shot the Jukebox" and "Grandma Got Run'd Over by a Reindeer."

Sincerely Yours,

Santa Claus

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As I did my exhausting research for this post, I was surprised that is Bubba Claus almost as famous as his flannel shirttail cousin Santa Claus, with all sorts of Bubba Claus items out there. I found a Bubba Claus knife by Schrade, Bubba Claus albums and CD's, and even a Bubba Claus quilt.

This post seems to be the perfect opportunity to share pictures of an incredible redneck Christmas tree sent to me by several people.

picture of redneck Christmas tree

picture of redneck Christmas tree

picture of redneck Christmas tree

picture of redneck Christmas tree

picture of redneck Christmas tree

And now the most amazing part - how beautiful a bunch of Mountain Dew cans can look...

picture of redneck Christmas tree

This will be my only blog post this week. Next week I'll post on Monday evening again with some fresh family pictures since our whole little family will be together here for a few days. In the meantime, here's a picture of our grandson Drew whose mom helped him make his first snow angel in the heavy snow they got a few days ago.

picture of Drew making a snow angel

Wherever your Christmas celebration is on the scale from redneck to elegant, may it be joyous! Here's a final greeting from Bubba Claus and his dawgs who will be visiting our (red)neck of the woods.

picture of Bubba Claus and his dawgs

quotation...

"God goes after the ones religious people think are unlikely and saves them." - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

Snowflakes are one of the most fragile things in nature, but just look at what they can do when they stick together.

Perspectives


Perspective is an interesting phenomenon. Two people can look at the same thing but not necessarily see the exactly the same thing, often because of their perspective. That was the case with the comments in my most recent blog post - the commentators added good insights from their own personal perspectives. The subtitle of my blog is "one French professor’s humorous and serious perspectives on life…." I often see humor where others see nothing but seriousness, and sometimes it's the other way around.

Today's blog post is 15 pictures that I've received since a post I did about two months ago called Can we believe what we see? You can tell that several of these were totally staged, but some are definitely interesting shots because of the angle or perspective, whether intentionally or serendipitously.

A young man keeping the Washington monument from falling...

picture with a certain perspective

A young lady eating the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem...

picture with a certain perspective

A player letting his basketball go to his head...

picture with a certain perspective

The rest I'll post without comment.

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

picture with a certain perspective

I always look forward to the comments on my blog because my readers are often able to add whole new insights since they're looking from a different angle. Many thanks to the many commentators! Some of your readers-only should enter into the discussions and add your perspective.

quotation...

"The reason our country is going the way it's going is not because we didn't get out the vote. It's because we're not on our knees praying for our people." - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

New Illinois State Motto: Illinois, where our governors make our license plates themselves

How to Plan an Inoffensive Office Christmas Party


picture of the grinch

How can you plan an inoffensive office Christmas party? Read on....

Those of you who have been reading my iv's for any length of time know that I try to provide the best in good, clean humor. But you also know that in doing that, I am often not "politically correct." In fact, I have real issues with the direction that the PC crowd is striving to drag our society. I think of that right now because each year the attempts to remove Christ from Christmas become more blatant. (Imagine people trying to make some sort of connection between Christ and CHRISTmas! - tongue firmly planted in cheek....) With that in mind, I'm posting a satirical series of e-mail memos about one company's first annual "Office Christmas Party."

DISCLAIMER: today's instant vacation contains several things that I do not personally participate in, but I post this because illustrates so well why we wouldn't want a politically correct, pure democracy, especially in today's increasingly fragmented environment.

FROM: Pat Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: Everyone
RE: Office Christmas Party
DATE: December 1

I'm happy to inform you that the first of what we hope will become the annual Office Christmas Party will take place on December 23, starting at noon in the banquet room at Luigi's Open Pit Barbecue. There will be plenty of eggnog! We'll have a small band playing traditional carols ... feel free to sing along. And don't be surprised if our CEO shows up dressed as Santa Claus! Exchange of gifts among employees can be done at that time; however, no gift should be over $10.00 to make the giving of gifts easy for everyone's pockets. This gathering is only for employees! Our CEO will make a special announcement at that time!

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Pat

========================================

FROM: Pat Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: Everyone
DATE: December 2
RE: Office Christmas Party

In no way was yesterday's memo intended to exclude our Jewish employees. We recognize that Chanukah is an important holiday which often coincides with Christmas. So we'll be calling it our "Holiday Party." The same policy applies to employees who are celebrating Kwanzaa at this time. There will be no Christmas tree present. No Christmas carols sung. We will have other types of music for your enjoyment. Everybody happy now?

Happy Holidays to you and your family.

Pat

========================================

FROM: Pat Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: Everyone
DATE: December 3
RE: Holiday Party

Regarding the note I received from a member of Alcoholics Anonymous, upset about the eggnog and requesting a non-drinking table ... you didn't sign your name. I'm happy to accommodate this request. But if I put a sign on a table that reads, "AA Only", you wouldn't be anonymous anymore. How am I supposed to handle this? Somebody?

Forget about the gifts exchange, no gifts exchange are allowed since the union members feel that $10.00 is too much money and executives believe $10.00 is a little chintzy.

NO GIFT EXCHANGE WILL BE ALLOWED.

Pat

========================================

FROM: Pat Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: Everyone
DATE: December 7
RE: Holiday Party

What a diverse company we are! I had no idea that December 20 begins the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which forbids eating and drinking during daylight hours. There goes the party! Seriously, we can appreciate how a luncheon this time of year does not accommodate our Muslim employees' beliefs. Perhaps Luigi's can hold off on serving your meal until the end of the party - the days are so short this time of year - or else package everything for take-home in little foil containers shaped like swans. Will that work?

Meanwhile, I've arranged for members of Overeaters Anonymous to sit farthest from the dessert buffet and pregnant women will get the table closest to the restrooms. We will have booster seats for short people. Low-carb and low-fat food will be available for those on a diet. We cannot control the salt used in the food, and we suggest that those people with high blood pressure taste their food first. There will be fresh fruits as dessert for diabetics since the restaurant cannot supply "No Sugar" desserts. Sorry!

Did I miss anything?

Pat

========================================

FROM: Pat Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: Everyone
DATE: December 8
RE: Holiday Party

So December 22 marks the Winter Solstice ... what do you expect me to do, a tap-dance on your heads? Fire regulations at Luigi's prohibit the burning of sage by our "earth-based goddess-worshiping" employees, but we'll try to accommodate your drumming circle during a break in the band music.

OK???

========================================

FROM: Pat Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: Everyone
Date: December 9
RE: Holiday Party

People, people, nothing sinister was intended by having our CEO dress up like Santa Claus! Even if the anagram of "Santa" does happen to be "Satan," there is no evil connotation to our own "little man in a red suit." It's a tradition, folks, like sugar shock from Easter candy or family feuds over the Thanksgiving turkey or broken hearts on Valentine's Day.

Could we lighten up?

========================================

FROM: Pat Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: Everyone
DATE: December 10
RE: Holiday Party

Vegetarians!?!?!? I've had it with you people!!! We're going to keep this party at Luigi's Open Pit Barbecue whether you like it or not, so you can sit quietly at the table furthest from the "grill of death," as you so quaintly put it, and you'll get your stupid salad bar, including hydroponic tomatoes ... but you know, they have feelings, too. Tomatoes scream when you slice them. I've heard them scream, I'm hearing them scream right NOW!

I hope you all have a rotten holiday!

========================================

FROM: Teri Bishop, Acting Human Resources Director
TO: Everyone
DATE: December 14
RE: Pat Lewis and Holiday Party

I'm sure I speak for all of us in wishing Pat Lewis a speedy recovery from her stress-related illness and I'll continue to forward your cards to her at the sanitarium.

In the meantime, management has decided to cancel our Holiday Party and give everyone the afternoon of the 23rd off with full pay. Thanks to our politically correct celebration of "diversity," we will not be able to enjoy a simple party together! We hope that this change does not offend anyone. If it does, GET A LIFE!

Happy Chanuk-Kwanzaa-Solsti-Rama-Mas! Whatever!

divider

Soooo... the way to have an inoffensive holiday party in some places is simply not to have one at all! Sadly, for those who get up every morning with a chip on their shoulder that they long to have someone knock off that day, that solution is what would make them truly happy - they're happy when no one's happy. Bah Humbug!

If you have some inoffensive or offensive favorite holiday traditions to share, please add your comment to this post. How do you handle those in your life who seem to be so eager to be offended?

quotation...

"True adoration comes not just from lips, but from lives." - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

Life is just a phase ... and you will get over it!