October 2022 Monthly Letter

Dear Reader,

Thank you for visiting my website.  I want to start by saying my thoughts and prayers go out to the victims of Hurricane Ian.  We got hammered in South Carolina.  I spent 2 hours sitting in the shower due to 80mph sustained winds.  The storms are getting fiercer, and there is nothing we can do about them except be prepared as best we can.  Makes me want to build a bunker, but it would probably get flooded!  I always worry about a power outage because you don’t know how long it will last.  I have a generator,  but that won’t keep the wind from blowing off the roof.  Yep.  Scary stuff.

The kitty squad is up to their usual tricks like turning on the TV in the middle of the night.  I have to remember to hide the remote, except I forget where I put it.  Need to leave a post-it, but I’m sure Mz. Boo will figure out a way to hide that too!   And then there’s her ability to turn on the faucet.  I swear they have a meeting as soon as I go to bed to decide what havoc they’re going to wreak.  But I have to admit they always make me laugh.  I suppose I’m an enabler.

There’s lots of book news to spread holiday cheer:

FALLING STARS – Hardcover On Sale Now

SPIRIT OF THE SEASON – On Sale Now with new packaging

SANTA CRUISE – Paperback on Sale Oct 25.  I must be psychic because I wrote this 2 years ago and there is a new “REAL” LOVE BOAT show airing this month, too!

People are starting their holiday shopping now because stores have too much inventory from the supply chain backlog.  So be careful out there.  The craziness is about to begin!  It seems like we’ve been living in the spin cycle of the washing machine for a couple of years.  Please try to be patient and kind as you traverse the holiday mania.

This month’s contest is a collection of books including FALLING STARS.

Be well, be safe, be kind, and try to have some fun.   Trick or Treat!

All the best, Fern

October 2022 Recipes

Let’s no forget Halloween!  Below is a fun treat that I just l-o-v-e, love!

Peanut Butter Treats

1 small jar Jiff peanut butter, 1 can of Duncan Heinz cake frosting (vanilla or chocolate)

Microwave peanut butter 90 seconds.  Microwave frosting 60 seconds.  Mix and pour in baking pan lightly greased and refrigerate until solid.  Cut and EAT when set.  OMG, I ate half the pan.

And with the cold weather approaching, here is one of my favorite one-pot recipes

Short Ribs – Crock Pot Recipe – You can make two different dinners from this

  • 2 lbs. short ribs
  • 1 lb. mushrooms – washed and sliced
  • 1 large leek (or onion) sliced thin
  • 3 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups dry red wine (don’t worry the alcohol will evaporate)
  • 8 oz. broth (bone is the best but you can use chicken or vegetable)
  • 1 tsp. ground savory
  • 1 tsp. dry oregano
  • 1 tsp. thyme
  • Pinch of salt
  • Fresh ground pepper – to your taste

Brown the short ribs in the olive oil.  Don’t overcook. Remove and set aside.
Brown the leeks and garlic in the same pan.
Pour the wine and broth into the crock pot and add savory, oregano, thyme, salt & pepper.  Stir together.
Add ribs and top with the mushrooms.
Cook 6 hours on high or 8 hours on low.

The meat will literally fall off the bone, that you can discard.
First meal is the beef.  Serve with mashed potatoes.

Second meal (which is the best part for me)

Pappardelle pasta.  Those are the long flat ones that are about a ¼ inch thick.  They usually come in spirals. Depending on how many people you are feeding you can decide how much pasta to make.  Cook pasta according to your liking.
Heat leftover mushroom sauce and serve over pasta.
Garnish with fresh basil, grated parmesan, or pecorino cheese.
If you’re like me and you want to give it a kick, sprinkle crushed red pepper.

Buon appetito!