Monday, August 1, 2011

New Blog - Diverted to Distraction
I started this dinnerbook blog as a place to keep track of recipes that I made that we liked and were easy.  It was a place for keeping them so that I could easily find them to make again.  But just the way I can't stay focused on one thing during the day my blog couldn't stay focused either.  It became a place for me to keep track of my life in general.  When the day was over I barely remembered what I did only that I was really busy.  I hardly even have time to keep this blog updated.  

So whether this is a really a blog, or just my diary, since I don't think anyone ever looks at it aside from Laura every now and then, and maybe Larry too to see if he missed anything in our life I decided to organize it. Organizing is one of the things I'm really good at or at least one of the things I like to do.  I'm always cleaning up or organizing something.  You'd never know it by the looks of things but it is one of my ongoing "hobbies?".

When I lived on Mt Airy and one of my friends or daughters asked me what I was doing that day, 9 times out of 10 the response would be "cleaning my room:. So now I'm cleaning my blog and organizing it.  I've renamed it to something more appropriate, that goes along with me and my blog and it's called Diverted to Distraction. I was going to import this blog into that one but for some reason Blogger doesn't let me do it.  I keep getting an error message so there is a link on that blog menu back to here and one from here to there.  Also, on the Distractions page are links to specific topics that pull from this blog such as "more recipes" or "more projects".


Friday, July 29, 2011

Photobook from Inkubook

After two months of on and off working on it, I finally finished my Cancun photobook.  Feel free to browse through by clicking on the arrows under the book.  After I get my book I'll give my final decision on the site.  I bought a variety of photobooks from various sites from Groupon over the past few months so now I have to use them.  Many of them give you a year to create your book.  Inkubook just four months and I bought two of them so one down, one to go by September 24th.  I was happy with the options available for designing the books.  A lot of page layouts, backgrounds, and fonts.

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Friday, July 15, 2011

Kayak and Lunch

We'd like to do "Kayak and Koffee" or "Kayak and Kocktails" but for today it was "Kayak and Lunch" (no alliteration).  Audrey, Lila, Mary Beth and I went kayaking over to the Bayside for lunch.  It was a beautiful day, a little breezy on the bay, but a perfect day for being outside.  I was glad I didn't have to work today.

 Look at how perfectly in sync Mary Beth and Lila were and I love the orange and yellow combination of the paddles.

This is how far away from them I was when I took the picture, you can't even see them. If you click on the picture it will enlarge and you can see them as a spec in the distance. 

 Audrey in her fast kayak

 We went down to check out the lily pads, not too many

 Here we are at lunch

And we were joined by a swan and her baby.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Amy's Tuna Mac

I made Amy's tuna mac for the first time this summer today.  I couldn't find the recipe so I wasn't sure whether I got all the ingredients, but after I made it and I wanted to figure out the PointsPlus value, I realized that I had posted it on Weight Watchers in my recipes last year.  And I remembered all the ingredients.
According to Amy the "key" ingredients are the specific pickles, Heinz Premium Dills.  I have never found them here, but we can get them in Pittsburgh when we go to visit Larry's daughter.  And Amy can get them from her brother in New Hampshire.  And the other necessity is Miracle Whip, not Mayo, but Miracle Whip.
Amy's Tuna Mac
12 oz pasta cooked al dente
3 - 6 oz. cans tuna
1 1/2 cups chopped onions
1 1/2 cups chopped celery
3 cups chopped Heinz Dill pickles
1/2 cup Miracle Whip
Salt and Pepper to taste
 Chop, chop, chop and combine all the ingredients.

Before I added the Miracle Whip I took some out so it wouldn't be as fattening but much to my surprise, when I calculated the points, it turns out that Miracle Whip only has 1 PointsPlus per tablespoon. 

1 cup of pasta salad - 4 PointsPlus.

Monday, July 11, 2011

My Book is on Squidoo

Just out of curiosity, I googled myself this morning.  Just another way to spend time when I should be doing the more productive things I have on my list, more about that list some other time.  Actually, Larry and I went out for a walk this morning and were home before 8:00 AM so that was productive, but here it is after 11:00 and I can't say I've accomplished much since then except watch The Big C that I recorded last week and fix some greeting cards I made.  

Back to my topic - - in Google I found myself listed under the normal things that I signed up for - Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and photo sites where I have pictures but to my surprise I found a link to my book, Letters to My Father on another site, Squidoo where the topic was about WWII letters

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Boat Ride

We finally got out on the boat today.  First time for the summer and it's already July 9th.  Wouldn't you know it, the temperature, wind and water conditions were not what I would call ideal.  I had my fleece on because it was only around 72 and moving out on the lake made it feel a lot colder.  The wind was out of the NW so that's never warm and even though there weren't any white caps on the lake it was still choppy.

But, it was a beautiful bright sunny day with blue skies and no rain in sight.  We rode around the lake for awhile, got gas and toured the bay and then back to the dock.  It was hot at the dock (relatively).  While there I fixed a tear in the vinyl with some duct tape.  Doesn't look beautiful but at least it should keep it from getting bigger.

Friday, July 8, 2011


I started off the day at 6:30 doing outdoor Yoga with Audrey at the Y.  It was so nice out there watching the clouds go by and not as cold as I thought it would be even though it was only 63° when we went.
At 9:45 Mary Beth joined us and we drove out to Fairport to the Erie Canal Boat Company to use our Groupon for a half day of Kayaking.  We had sit on Kayaks that turned out to be pretty comfortable with good back support.  They were easy to use and we had perfect weather.  We had the Riviera by Jackson.
Once I got home I checked on google maps for the distance and we paddled 2.5 miles each way.  If we wanted to go to Shoen Place for lunch, which was a thought we had, we would have had to paddle 6.6 miles in each direction.  Although the Erie canal is  East-West it is anything but a straight line.  Our paddle took us South.
 Once we returned the boats we needed some nourishment and discovered Whatcha' Got Cookin' practically next door where we were able to sit outside alongside the canal and have some delicious sandwiches. Thanks to Audrey for the next pictures.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Happy Belated Birthday

I like to think I have artistic takent or more likely I like to wish I had artistic talent.

Back in February I had a Groupon for one of the Paint Your Own Pottery places around here, Glaze and Glass. It expired at the end of the month and we were going away then too so I rushed in there to do something. I decided to make a birthday plate for Larry. His birthday is in May so when I didn't have time to complete it that day they said I could leave it there and finish it when I came back from our trip. 

Well we got back in April and I never had a chance to go over there. Then we went away again in May. Finally the end of June I got over there and finished my plate and gave it to Larry today. Only a month and a half after his birthday. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Blueberry Muffins

I had loads of blueberries so thought I would make some blueberry muffins.  I found a recipe that had great reviews and decided to make it.  The original recipe is at the AllRecipes Site but I changed it a little and that's what I'm including here:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1 cup fresh blueberries
2 tablespoons sugar or enough to cover

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease 10 muffin cups or line with muffin liners.
  2. Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt and baking powder. 
  3. Place vegetable oil into a 1 cup measuring cup; add the egg and milk. 
  4. Mix this with flour mixture. 
  5. Fold in blueberries.  
  6. Fill muffin cups 2/3.
  7. Sprinkle with sugar.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until done.

The original recipe called for making 8 large muffins and they had a crumb topping.  I eliminated the crumb topping and increased the muffins to 10 and it was still 6 PointsPlus per muffin.  But they were good.  I ate one before I calculated the Points.

The Galloping Gourmet's Cauliflower with Carrot "Cheese" Sauce

Saw this on Rachael Ray this morning and definitely want to try it. I used to love watching The Galloping Gourmet back in the day. That's where I learned to make clarified butter which I would never use today.


  • 4 cups cauliflower florets
  • 3 carrots, peeled and sliced into ½-inch rounds (yield 1 ½ cups)
  • 1/2 cup evaporated skim milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch cayenne
  • Pinch cumin
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Dusting of smoked paprika
Yields: Serves 4


Steam cauliflower 18 minutes or until tender but not mushy. Set aside.

Cook the carrots in the evaporated milk and water, covered, in a medium saucepan, 10-15 minutes or until very soft. Place the carrots and cooking liquid, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and lemon juice in a blender, and whiz for 2-3 minutes or until smooth and glossy. Add the salt, cayenne, and cumin, and whiz to mix.

Place the cauliflower in a small baking dish. Spoon the carrot sauce over the cauliflower and scatter the Parmesan cheese over the top. Brown under a preheated broiler 4 inches from heat and serve, garnished with a dusting of smoked paprika.
Per serving: 92 calories, 2 g fat, 1 g saturated fat (9% calories from saturated fat), 13 g carbohydrate, 6 g protein, 3 g dietary fiber, 356 mg sodium. Exchanges: 3 Vegetable, ½ fat
Graham Kerr, Growing at the Speed of Life – page 111

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Meat Loaf and Chicken Salad

With a painful neck there isn't much to do that is any fun that doesn't involve creating more pain in my neck so I pretty much have been listening to books and doing some cooking.  I like to cook when I have a good book to listen to since I can multi-task.

I made Larry's favorite, meatloaf, so he could have it tonight while I went to work.  I'm not a meatloaf fan so it is always good for a night when I'm not home.
I used the recipe from a previous post but I never had a picture with it.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Leftovers in an Omelet

I must be trying to get rid of everything in the refrigerator.  Tonight we couldn't decide what to have for dinner.  Was it going to be leftover pork tenderloin, AGAIN or another salad.  Then I thought, what about an omelet.  I took everything I could find and put it all together and we had a delicious omelet.

The ingredients I had on hand were:
Baby Portobello Mushrooms
Green onions
Red, Orange and Yellow Peppers

I sauteed all the ingredients first and then added beat up eggs mixed with some water.  When the eggs were almost set I added freshly shredded Parmegiano Reggiano and then sprinkled some Parmesan & Romano grated cheese over the top after the shredded was melted.
It was almost like a frittata but I didn't have any potatoes.  I'm so much better at creating things at the last minute than having to plan a meal.

Parker Visit

My neck was bothering me again after I pulled something playing golf last Monday so I wasn't fit for doing any kind of fun things outdoors. We finally bought some plants to put in pots outside and also got some sunflowers for in the house.

We went to visit Marge, Darren and Parker on the 4th.  He's one month old now.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Kitchen Sink Salad

When I was a kid my brother had a birthday party at Jahn's Ice Cream Parlor in the Bronx and we got the "kitchen sink" which served everyone. It had all the flavors and toppings you could want.  Here's a link to an article in the NY Times about the last remaining Jahn's location.

I felt like the salad we had for dinner tonight was like that too. Larry had his with leftover pork tenderloin and I had mine meatless.  They not only tasted delicious but I though looked good enough to eat.

Greens (spinach & field greens)

Green onion
Goat Cheese
Sunflower seeds

Friday, July 1, 2011


I'm totally amazed at the number of creative and talented people in the world and why I'm not one of them.  I want to create a new website and actually keep it active so I'm trying to think of a good title.  In doing so, I've been looking at other websites and blogs on the web.  So far I have killed an hour doing this, no wonder I never get anything done, and haven't a clue but have found some interesting websites in the process.

Dear Photographer is interesting
People send in a picture from the past taken in front of the same scene in the present.  I don't know if I would be able to find my past from a picture now but it would be fun to try.

Here's another cute posting on a website:
Which led me to the creators website where you can see all the pics.
What would your refrigerator say about you?

Guess I should make some coffee now and start my day.  Think I'll take a picture of my refrigerator too :)
 Maybe I should have cleaned it and organized it first??

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hurd Orchards

Twelve of us went to Hurd Orchards today.  It was a beautiful day, although it was so windy that they needed to close the doors of the barn near our table so we wouldn't get blown away during lunch.  Before lunch there was the requisite shopping.  How can you not buy some of their breads when you can smell them baking as soon as you get out of your car in the parking lot? 
I got a strawberry bread and a rhubarb bread.  I would have gotten the cherry bread too but I remembered that Larry doesn't like cherries and he's the one who has to eat them - such torture I inflict upon the man.

The theme for our lunch was Juneberry Jam and Watercress Soup

We started with wild grape leaves stuffed with bourin
cheese.  The cheese was homemade and very creamy.
No wonder it didn't taste like what I buy at Wegmans.

The tea was cherry and rose petal

This is the watercress soup with a dollop of sour cream.
All the plates, bowls, etc are lovely and different.
We were served honey oatmeal bread, blueberry
muffins and juneberry and strawberry jams

Here we are
(click on a picture to see it larger)
I'm in the picture below that I took from Audrey's Facebook photos.

Thanks Audrey!!

The main course consisted of a salad with the most delicious chive
blossom vinegar dressing and a ham puff pastry that had parmesan,
gruyere and creme fraiche and a side dish of fresh cherries.
Dessert was Williamsburg pound cake with fresh
strawberries, blueberries, a mound of delicious

whipped cream and topped off with a cherry and mint sprig.

It was a lovely afternoon with a group of wonderful ladies. We are all lucky to be neighbors. And it was Sandy's birthday, what a nice birthday lunch for all of us.  We missed those that couldn't make it but we're planning on doing it again.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

5x7 Folded Card

Picture In Landscape 5x7 folded card
Create cute birthday cards, valentines and more at
View the entire collection of cards.

Monday, June 27, 2011


I've made a few different seasoning blends but I bought an Herbes de Provence that I have never used and the container didn't itemize out what was in it so I looked it up.
I'm going to include all my recipes right here for future use.  I found it very handy to tape the ingredients for each mixture on the jar when I make it so I never have to wonder where I put the recipe but this will be a handy spot too.

Emeril's Herbes de Provence
2 tablespoons dried savory

2 tablespoons dried
2 tablespoons dried thyme
2 tablespoons dried2 tablespoons dried basil
2 tablespoons dried
2 tablespoons dried fennel seed
In a small mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients together. Store in an air-tight container. 

Blackened Seasoning
2 tablespoons ground paprika
1 tablespoon ground cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dfied basil
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

Mix all ingredients together and store in air-tight container.

Emeril's Essence
5 tablespoons sweet paprika
1/4 cup salt
1/4 cup garlic powder
2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons onion powder
2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 tablespoons dried thyme
Combine all ingredients in a small mixing bowl and blend well.  Store in an airtight container in your spice cabinet for up to 3 months.

Italian Seasoning
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Combine all ingredients and store in airtight container.


I keep buying strawberries because they taste so delicious and the 2# package is such a good deal but I'm running out of things to do with them that aren't fattening.  So we eat a bunch, then I cook up a bunch to use on oatmeal or pancakes and slice some for over cereal.  When I'm at a total loss I just freeze them for use later in smoothies or for cooking.  
I came upon these two recipes when looking at the Driscoll site that both look really good, even though I wouldn't consider them dietetic they would be great to make for company so I'm posting them here as a reminder.

Grilled Berry Pizza with Goat Cheese

Goat Cheese and Strawberry Bruschetta

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Off to OG

I left Nadine's around noon on Friday after we skyped with Gerry.  It was such a great visit, can't wait to do it again.  It was Nadine's birthday and I can't remember when we last spent any time together on her birthday, probably not since she was 12 or 13.  

Now I was going to Greta's and Laura was arriving about the same time.  Needless to say, this was a very different type of visit than the one I just had with Nadine.  From laid back and lazy to on the go every minute.  I got there before Beverly got home with the boys.  Myles was at a playdate and Hunter was supposed to have a Kindergarten event at the beach at 4:00 but just a few minutes before that the skies opened up and the rains came.  Laura arrived during the downpour and after Greta got home we did have a lazy evening.  

On Saturday it was entirely different.  In one day we went out on the boat

and then went to Myles piano recital and this is one of the three pieces he did
and then to the Bloomberg Summer Picnic

In my next life I want to work at Bloomberg in NYC.  Not only do they take over all of Randalls Island for their family summer picnic, but an employee gets 2 to 4 terminals on their desk in a beautiful building in New York City, at least in the areas I've seen.