April 2023 Monthly Letter

Dear Friends,

Hooray for Spring! The rebirth from the darkness. The azaleas are in full bloom. Everything is coming back to big, bold, beautiful brightness! I just hope the weather behaves and everyone can enjoy a lovely spring.

I was looking at some of my previous letters. Three years ago we were in the dark ages of COVID. At least that dark cloud is behind us. But it sure would be nice if we had no more surprises.

Most of you know I am a news junkie and the news hasn’t been great. There is turmoil, treachery, and just a whole lot of bad going on. It’s hard not to let it get the best of you. I try to turn it off, but it’s addicting. I had a conversation with a friend the other night who said she was feeling depressed. There was nothing in particular, but she felt weepy. I told her to stop watching the news. Maybe I should take my own advice. Ha. But it’s true, my friends. If the only things we hear about are horrible, then we’re going to feel horrible. Don’t get me wrong, there is a lot to feel horrible about, but I’ve said it many times, when you get up each day, think about something that makes you happy. Even if it’s just one thing. And then be thankful for it.

It’s my pet menagerie that keeps me sane. I imagine them having a conversation about what stunts they’re going to pull while I’m asleep. Just like the commercials:

One says, “your turn to unroll the toilet paper.”

“But I did it last month. Let me play with the remote!”, says the other.

All this from the mind of a crazy cat lady.

April is a month of holidays. We have Easter and Passover. I know I mentioned it in the past, but did you know why Easter is different every year? It’s the first Sunday after the first Full Moon after the Equinox. So if you want to know when Easter will fall next year, look up the day of the Equinox and the full moon that follows. The Sunday after will be Easter. You can bet your chocolate bunny on it!

On to book news: On The Line is finally available and the reviews have been wonderful! My appreciation to everyone who has taken the time to read it and the time to review it. It means so much to me when I know I did my job. My job to entertain you. To transport you. To give you hope, laughs, and a mystery to solve. Plus, there are some wonderful recipes in it too!

I wish everyone a blessed holiday no matter what you practice as long as you practice kindness in the mix. Be well. Be safe. Be kind. Keep your sense of humor. Keep reading, and cooking!

All the best,

April 2023 Recipes

Food for thought….and for eating:

Chicken Marsala – Easy and good for company

  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour for coating
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 4 medium skinless, boneless chicken breast halves – pounded 1/4 inch thick
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • ½ cup Marsala wine (cooking wine is fine)
  • ¼ cup cooking sherry


Mix flour, pepper, oregano, salt in a shallow bowl.

Coat chicken in flour mixture.  Sometimes I will dip chicken in egg whites before I coat it with the flour.

In a large skillet add butter and olive oil, and heat.  Do not let the butter turn brown.

Add the coated chicken and cook for 3-4 minutes.  Turn and cook other side for 3-4 minutes.

Add mushrooms, sherry, and Marsala wine.

Cover and simmer for about 10 minutes until mushrooms are soft.

Serve over linguine.


Kielbasa with potatoes and peppers – another quick and easy dish

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 (16 ounce) package smoked kielbasa sausage, diced (or any smoked sausage you prefer)
  • 6 medium red potatoes, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 small onion, diced


Heat oil in a pan over medium heat.

Place kielbasa and potatoes in the pan. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender, about 25 minutes.

Mix bell peppers and onions into the pan, and continue cooking until peppers are just tender, 5 minutes.

Toss a sprig of parsley to make it pretty.

Serve with crusty bread.


Now for some dessert: – QUICK AND EASY

Pineapple Fluff

  • 1 package Jiffy yellow cake
  • 1 box instant French vanilla pudding mix
  • 8 oz. cream cheese (I use low-fat)
  • 1 large can crushed pineapple, strained
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (I use walnuts, but any kind will work)
  • 2 cups milk
  • 16 oz. tub of Cool Whip


Mix yellow cake mix according to package.

Pour into 9” x 13” greased pan.

Bake 15 minutes. Cool.

While cake is cooling:

Whip these together until it thickens:

  • 1 box instant French vanilla pudding
  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 2 Cups milk

Pour over cooled cake.

Sprinkle pineapple on top of pudding.

Spread 1 large carton Cool Whip over pineapple.

Sprinkle chopped nuts over Cool Whip.

Keep refrigerated.