November 2014 Archives

Guest Room

Go-To Rigatoni with Spicy Tomato Sauce, Kalamatas and Two Cheeses

By Charlotte on November 26, 2014 5:16 AM | Read More

By Betty Rosbottom, author Sunday Casseroles

This is my "go-to" casserole for potlucks, for suppers for my husband's college students and for weekend company guests. It can be completely assembled in advance, serves a crowd and has bold, striking flavors. The name says it all--tube-shaped pasta are coated in a tomato sauce with an extra kick of heat from red pepper flakes, while creamy Havarti and Parmesan cheese add a luscious smoothness, and slivered olives provide a salty accent.


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Daily Distraction

Polite Protest

By Bob on November 25, 2014 4:24 AM | Read More

She put the "civil" in civil disobedience.

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The List

The List: Top 8 Holiday Recipes

By Charlotte on November 24, 2014 6:37 AM | Read More

Our holidays got off to a rocky start last year. Bob and I were meeting our New York son Cole at the beach house in Alabama. I never get to cook for him anymore so I was really looking forward to fixing all his favorite foods.

But about the time we got to Shreveport, I realized we'd forgotten the little, white notebook with all my go-to recipes. Sure, there's always Pinterest but I'm talkin' about tried-and-true ideas perfected over more than three decades of marriage. My understanding husband (who has a weakness for a certain Chocolate Pie) saved the day by driving four hours back to Dallas so I could pick up my notes. Then turned around and drove another 11 1/2 hours to the beach. Yes, he is a keeper!

Since then, I've been putting more and more of our holiday favorites on the site so that never happens again. Here are eight top picks that must be our table both Thanksgiving and Christmas:

Texas Turkey

While I focus on appetizers, sides and desserts, Bob works magic with the main course. His easy recipe gives us up a moist, perfectly seasoned bird with a Texas kick. Yum!

In about 3 1/2 hours, you'll be licking your lips.

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Don't Try This At Home

Ladder Day Saints

By Bob on November 24, 2014 2:37 AM | Read More

This is the time of year when every homeowner gets to unleash his inner Griswold. Some of our neighbors wait all year to string light strand after light strand from every conceivable gutter and gable.  The rest either hire someone to do it, or skip the whole exterior lighting escapade.

I fall into that category. 


Lemme 'splain. Ladders and I still aren't on speaking terms. Sure, I still own one, but we haven't gotten along since Sept. 25, 2005.

When Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse.

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That was the day I extended my 12' aluminum ladder as far as it would go and PROPPED IT UP ON A BENCH to reach even HIGHER. No, I wasn't getting an early jump (make that, fall) on putting up my Christmas lights. I was doing a little home improvement project that would "only take a minute".

That minute took me two years, two surgeries, 12 titanium screws, three titanium plates, assorted wire and two bone grafts to overcome. 

You're in real trouble when the morphine drip doesn't cut the pain.

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Playing Favorites

Hateship Loveship

By Bob on November 20, 2014 5:35 AM | Read More

Kristen Wiig is an actress plenty of people can either take or leave. You might have loved her in Bridesmaids and hated her in her many character roles on Saturday Night Live. Regardless of your feelings, one thing you can say is she's a formidable comedy talent.

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Why Weight?

4 MORE Secrets for a Longer Life

By Bob on November 19, 2014 4:30 AM | Read More

Living longer is something we're all interested in. But what good is longevity if you're not healthy enough to enjoy it? Here are four tips that'll help you live longer AND have the health you need to make the most of it.

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Daily Distraction

No! I Said Windowsill

By Bob on November 18, 2014 4:20 AM | Read More

NOT windowGRILL!

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Comfort Corner

Comfort Corner: Easy, Cheesy Hash Brown Potato Casserole

By Charlotte on November 14, 2014 6:31 AM | Read More

It takes some juggling to please everyone at our holiday table. Our son Cole's not crazy about cranberry sauce. My stepfather Ken doesn't eat broccoli or almonds. My mom Patsy's not keen on pumpkin. Then there's Ashley. Let's just say the list of what my precious niece likes is MUCH shorter than what she avoids.

But this Easy Cheesy Hash Brown Potato Casserole is one side they all adore. I guess that's why it's been part of our holiday celebrations for almost 40 years. My mom made it for many a family gathering when I was a teenager. Then when I married Bob, his mother Jo taught me a yummy variation. Her secret was using frozen Potatoes O'Brien with onions and peppers already mixed in instead of the plain Jane version. That's a great way to cut chopping time!

This Easy, Cheesy Hash Brown Potato Casserole makes a super side for Thanksgiving, Christmas or any festive get-together.

Ready to Serve-600.jpgSince then, I've tweaked the recipe to lighten the ingredients. But it's as easy as ever. You just combine sour cream, canned soup, seasonings and cheese with frozen hash browns and bake.

You need only seven ingredients to make this company-worthy baked potato casserole.

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Remotely Possible

5 Things NOT to Buy on Black Friday

By Bob on November 13, 2014 11:32 AM | Read More

I know a lot of people who looove Black Friday. Me? Not so much. With me, Black Friday takes a back seat to Taco Tuesday, Enchilada Wednesday and the all-important Margarita Monday. 

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Guest Room

Holiday-Perfect Roast Turkey with Sage-Bread Stuffing

By Charlotte on November 12, 2014 6:07 AM | Read More

By The Best of Bridge Ladies, authors of Best of Bridge Holiday Classics

Turkey almost always has the place of honor when family and friends gather for holiday meals. It's perfect when serving a crowd. It's economical, too, and everyone loves it.

Best of all are the leftovers that get wrapped and placed in the fridge for hearty sandwiches the next day -- or even later that night.

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In the Mirror

18 Eye Makeup Heroes Starting at $8

By Charlotte on November 11, 2014 12:54 PM | Read More

Eye makeup is a big MUST for me. Just ask Bob. He knows we'll be hitting Taco Bueno's drive-through for lunch if I'm ever au natural. After all, you never know who you might run into inside!

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Daily Distraction

Why the Long Face?

By Bob on November 11, 2014 4:17 AM | Read More

Oh, that's why!

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Don't Try This At Home

5 Rules for Facebook

By Bob on November 10, 2014 3:18 AM | Read More

Now that the mid-term elections are over I've decided to come out of my foxhole. I'm telling you guys, from what I could see looking over this mound of dirt ...it's been BRUTAL out there. 

I'll just go on and say what we're all thinking. 

Some of you people are bat shit crazy. 

Thank GOD we've got social media to sort all this out. If it wasn't for the internet, I wouldn't have an opinion.

Why couldn't we have been adopted by someone with a decent Wi-Fi network?

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According to all of you I'm a blank slate (and BTW how did you get copies of my high school report cards? Damn you Edward Snowden!). Thank you from the bottom of my ignorant heart, for telling me HOW to vote...WHEN to vote...WHO to vote for...and most importantly, WHICH of the candidates were baby-killing Satanists. 

THAT was a HUGE help. 

We have two years until the next BIG political dustup, so Ima gonna save you some valuable time for the next time around. 

Hell to the NO...I'll do you one better. Ima gonna save you time every effin' day. A lot of you post tons of horseshit interesting information on Twitter, Facebook, Linked In and Instagram that I don't need to know. 

So, as a PUBLIC SERVICE, I'll give you 5 TOPICS YOU CAN STOP posting on social media right now. 


 Trust me - nobody cares what you think about...

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Daily Distraction


By Bob on November 4, 2014 4:13 AM | Read More

...but no cigar!

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Just Desserts

Just Desserts: Crockpot Cranberry-Apple Crisp

By Charlotte on November 3, 2014 6:22 AM | Read More

Since fall has finally arrived in Texas, Bob and I have been in the mood for apples. He picked up some wonderful fresh ones great for munching. I wanted to make an apple dessert but peeling those little darlings can be a chore.

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Red Thong Strong: Girlfriends Little Secrets to Smoothing Lifes Panty Lines
Guest Room

Diabetes-Friendly Chicken Burrito Bowl

ChickenBurritoBowlEverydayDiabetes 600.jpg

By Laura Cipullo and Lisa Mikus, authors of Everyday Diabetes Meals
Image credit: Colin Erricson

Prepare your own Mexican quick fix with this Chipotle-inspired bowl. Carbs are moderated by filling the bowl with beans, extra veggies and chicken. No need for rice, since the beans count as carbs.


If you love tomatoes, increase the quantity to 1/2 cup, but note that the carbohydrates will also increase.

If preparing this recipe for one person, cut all of the ingredients in half. Or simply prepare the full recipe up to the end of step 2 and store leftover chicken and vegetable-bean mixture in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Reheat in the microwave on High for 1 to 2 minutes, or until heated through, and continue with step 3.

Health Bite: The iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper and zinc in black beans help to keep bones strong and healthy.

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Playing Favorites

Windy City

It's been almost 18 years since Alison Krauss gave us a solo album, but the wait is over with Windy City. The release (her fifth solo studio album) features ten covers of classic songs (and some bonus tracks) she picked with producer Buddy Cannon.

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