Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Adding a bit of light and sparkle to my life, a great thrift store find! Silver Teapot and Coffee Pot Lamps!

There is a few thrift stores I frequent where I live and each is special to me for a different reason. I often will go to the thrift store when the "spirit moves me" or when I get a few stolen moments.  I get a thrill when I find a treasure, often an inexpensive tea cup and saucer, small knick knack  and I don't often spend more than a few dollars, however it is my birthday month and well the find I got last week had me going over my thrift store budget but I think you can see why I simply had to have these and you may want to make your own! I found both a Silver coffee pot and tea pot that had been turned into lamps!!!

Other than having to polish these beauties I could not believe a reason someone would want to get rid of these treasures but I am very glad they did! At $25 each, these working lamps truly spoke to me.
With a tiny bit of silver polish and cloth I made short work and brought these beauties back to life. They are now in my bed room and the perfect bedside reading lamps. The hospital thrift store I purchased them from benefited from my purchase and whomever thought to give these a new life, certainly brightened mine.
If you would like to learn how to make your own I found this youtube video that might get you inspired to try making your own.

Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a great thrift store find!
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at

Monday, April 8, 2019

Karen's White Bean and Spinach Soup A Left Coast Crime Gala Dinner Copycat Recipe

I am still honestly in awe from the Left Coast Crime Conference that was held in Vancouver last month at the Hyatt. I was as impressed with the venue as I was with the amazing talented room of writers I shared the evening meal with on the Saturday evening.  The gala dinner and lefty awards were hosted in the ballroom of the Hyatt and the 4 course meal was outstanding. I had the vegetarian meal and it was something I am still dreaming about.

The sit down meal I fully enjoyed and the dinner conversation as well. One of the items that stood out most for me was the soup that was served to us upon sitting. I asked what it was and was told it was a white bean cream soup.

It was the oddest shade of green, buy something I fell in love with as soon as it hit my tongue. I regret not asking for another bowl! I found it hard to concentrate on the conversation at the table as I was trying to deconstruct the soup in my mind so I could make it again. This past Saturday I did just that, in my own way. I am sharing the recipe with you on the chance you might also enjoy it as well. I know I will make this soup again.

Karen's White Bean and Spinach Soup
2 cans of 19 oz white kidney beans
1/2 a frozen package of chopped spinach
1 lt of Chicken Stock
1 cup of water
1/2 a large white onion
2 stalks of celery
2 tsp garlic
2 tablespoons of butter
Salt and Pepper to taste (I added Slap yo Mama Spice instead)
1 tsp thyme
*1/2 cup sour cream (I used lactose free) as a garnish or blend in the soup

In a large pot, with 2 tbsp of butter melting over medium heat place 1/2 of a finely chopped onion and 2 chopped stalks of celery.  Saute over medium heat three to 4 minutes until the onions and celery start to turn translucent. Add your 2 tsp of chopped garlic and stir until evenly distributed and continue cooking for another 1-2 minutes. Add your chicken stock and water, Bringing the broth upto a boil, add your 1/2 package of frozen spinach. Boil over medium heat until all the spinach is combined, stirring and breaking up the spinach as you go. Turn off heat and use an immersion blender (or regular blender)   once the beans, broth and spinach are combined spoon into bowls and serve with a dollop of sour cream.
I loved making and eating this soup, I hope you will too.
I even used my childhood bunnykins bowl to eat from.

Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a recipe today I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Karen's Easter Potatoes and a bit of family history and mystery...

It is just a month since my father passed away and like all survivors, those of us left behind have the responsibility to go through the material items that are left behind. If you are new to my blog my dad passed away in March and my mother before him in September of 2010.

My sister and I were going through his worldly possessions and this overwhelming task was made somehow a bit lighter in finding one of the many notes my father would leave my mother everyday of their marriage.  My father would often leave before my mother and leave her a quick note in the most beautiful handwriting, on the table beside her book so that it would be the first thing she saw when she sat down. These were sometimes scribbled on scrap paper, the back of receipts or envelopes and often discarded at the end of the day, so how in the midst of my sadness and grieving this one particular love note survived not only the passing of my mother, but also my father and ended up in a box of photos destined for my place.  As I flipped through the old family photos this one particular note caught my attention, I smiled at the memory of note, and as I unfolded it I found a recipe of mine, in my mother's handwriting on the back for Easter Potatoes.  I don't think I had made them since 2005 when the recipe was copied down by my mother after a telephone call we had.
Having this once loved recipe was a particularly exciting find, how it ended up in the box is a mystery but one I am happy to have stumbled on. So I made it again and thought I would share with all of you....
 Karen's Baked Easter Potatoes

1 package of thawed frozen shoestring potatoes (I used two boxes of dried that I got a costco and rehydrated them)
1/2 a white onion
1 cup cream cheese
2 cups sour cream
2 cups of grated medium cheddar
1 can of cream of chicken soup
2 cups of corn flakes
1/4 cup Butter
Salt and Pepper (*I have since discovered Slap ya Mama spice so I used that instead)

Preheat oven to 375
Thaw or rehydrate your hashbrowns and add to a large metal bowl. Use a box grater to grate half a large white onion and add that to the bowl. Use a spatula to add and combine cream cheese and sour cream. Mix well until evenly distributed. Add one cup of the cheese and combine. *Add some of salt and peper Open the can of cream of chicken soup and stir that into your mix.  In a 9X13 baking dish that has been sprayed or greased spread out your potato mixture. 
In a medium sized bowl place your cornflakes and the remaining cheese. Melt the butter in the microwave and add to your cheese and cornflake mixture. Stir until combined and place on top of the potato mixture and spread evenly. 
Place your baking dish into the oven and bake one hour or until the potato mixture is golden and bubbly. 

Thank you for joining me today for a cup of tea and a recipe. I look forward to sharing more with you again soon. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

May Day Murder by Jennifer David Hesse

I read May Day Murder in January and with all that had been going on in my life I realized only this morning that I had yet to review it. Jennifer David Hesse, is one of my most favorite Paranormal Cozy authors. The Wiccan Wheel Mystery Series Main character is Attorney Keli who tries hard not to announce her religious faith to the world, preferring the life and freedom of an solitary witch, yet somehow no matter what seems to happen it is her faith that she calls upon or is called into question to help solve murder mysteries. In May Day, Keli is put to the test almost immediately and when Keli is made a person of interest the web gets more and more tangled. Keli finds herself questioning everything including her faith. This is a great read and one I know that many of you will truly enjoy.

Spring is in the air, but for Edindale, Illinois, attorney Keli Milanni, murder is the only thing blooming . . .  Keli’s looking forward to Beltane, the time-honored Wiccan holiday that celebrates life with feasting, ceremonial dancing, and ancient Celtic rituals. But since recently leaving her law firm and opening her own practice, Keli has more on her plate than simple abundance. Still, she always has time for a friend. Erik, a Druid from a neighboring town, has had a run of bad luck he blames on a curse cast by his ex-girlfriend Denise, a practicing witch whose expertise in the dark arts can’t save her from her own deadly end. When Keli finds herself a person of interest in the investigation, she begins to wonder if she herself might be cursed. With a little help from her friends, including her devoted boyfriend Wes, Keli aims to find out who poisoned Denise. What she uncovers is a witch’s brew of spells, hexes, and black magic that raises questions about her own Wiccan worldview. As the community gathers for the May Day festivities, it’s up to Keli to stop a killer from springing ahead to another murder . . .

This Kensington release is out now and waiting for you to pick up and enjoy. I am not an Amazon affiliate, and you can find it on Amazon by clicking here. 

Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cozy mystery I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at