Archive | April, 2020

Wednesday:) What’s Cookin’ Miss Toni? (With Bernard’s Gourmet Salsas)

30 Apr

“When the world gives you lots of leftovers, have a lot of fun making tasty meals.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


I love to cook, and when I have leftovers, it’s fun to see what I can create that’s easy and tasty. I had some leftover chicken tenders, and I was able to make three or four different meals with it.

I diced and sautéed the chicken and half an onion. Monday, I made quesadillas with some of the mixture using pepper jack cheese and Bernard’s habanero salsa. Yesterday, I made flour tortilla tostadas with the chicken mixture and black beans, cheese and spinach, more salsa, of course.

Today, I made a couple of corn tostadas with the chicken, black beans, cheese, and spinach. I used those already pre-made shells that are so good and inexpensive. You could feed a family of five with these 27 small shells.

I grabbed a small ziplock of avocado from the freezer earlier, (yes, you can freeze avocado with a little lemon) mushed it up, snipped off a corner, and drizzled on the baby spinach topping the shells. I just happen to love spinach instead of lettuce.

I popped them in the toaster oven a couple of minutes to warm the shell and melt the cheese, then put a couple of teaspoons of Bernard’s Tomato y Red Pepper Salsa, some spinach, and little avocado.

Delicious! The problem is… I still have enough leftover for another meal. 🤦‍♀️

Luckily, you never get tired of tasty tostadas.

Tuesday:) Toni’s Tedious Tip of the Day

29 Apr

“For every minute spent organizing, an hour is earned.”

~Benjamin Franklin


Here’s my organizing tip of the day… Before you tackle a huge organizing project, make sure you have an unlimited amount of time to commit. Guess what folks, I have an unlimited amount of time on my hands.

I’ve been working on organizing my “crap room” upstairs for a couple of weeks. To be honest, it looks worse than when I started, because I’m literally pulling everything apart and going through every box and bin and bag. Oh yes, I’m also busy admiring every painting, sketch, drawing, photo, and craft while I’m shuffling things around. (Believe me, it’s a lot worse than it looks.)

What I didn’t expect was to spend about an hour just sorting one bin of paint brushes. Did you know that those little throw away foam brushes actually disintegrate after a couple of years? Yes, they do, and they make a big dusty mess.

Remember this mess because this room will be so organized somewhere around Christmas, if I’m really diligent. Maybe not this Christmas, maybe next year.

“For every minute spent organizing, an hour is earned.” If this is true, by the time I’m done, I will have earned about 20 years. Wish me luck.

And for a pleasant surprise at the end of my day, my friend Karen stopped by and left a bouquet of sunflowers on my front porch. Yes, I’m very blessed.

Montage Monday:) A Week in a Quarantined Peek

28 Apr

“The only difference between my activity level now and being in a coma is… wait, not much difference. Never mind.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Well, that may be a humorous quote, but not far from the truth. If it wasn’t for my daily walks, FaceTime with friends and family, and a lot of television, I’d be in a coma. I’m finding it harder and harder to get motivated enough to get dressed every day. If it wasn’t for an evening walk, I’d stay in my pajamas all day. Do you think anyone would notice if I walked outside in my pajamas? I doubt it.

A week in a quarantined peek…

I did get a few more steps walking outside today than usual today.

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff~ Quo Vadis

27 Apr

You can’t really know where you are going until you know where you have been.

Maya Angelou


Well, another Sunday going to church in my pajamas, tucked under my covers with a nice cup of green tea. I’m getting awfully lazy. It took me a few minutes to get the live streaming going because the Facebook page wasn’t working, so I had to get to the St. Gabriel website. I miss my greeting of friends, and hugs, and smiling children. I can’t imagine how long it will be until we can gather again.

Today’s Gospel was the story of Jesus joining some disciples on the road to Emmaus, but they didn’t look up nor recognize that it was Jesus. As they talked, Jesus asked about their discussion. They said that people were talking all about how Jesus was sentenced to death and crucified, yet two days later, the tomb was discovered empty.

When they got to the village, they asked the stranger to stay and eat with them…30 Now while he was with them at table, he took the bread and said the blessing; then he broke it and handed it to them.

31 And their eyes were opened and they recognised him; but he had vanished from their sight.

32 Then they said to each other, ‘Did not our hearts burn within us as he talked to us on the road and explained the scriptures to us?’

My take on it…. sometimes the truth or the obvious is right before our eyes and we don’t recognize it. Remain strong and faithful and all will be revealed to you.

Today, the theme of the Third Sunday of Easter is Quo Vadis, translating to where are you going? That’s a very good question, isn’t it? That’s a good question to ask ourselves today and every day. Where are YOU going on this journey we call life?


After my tedious adventures of getting to church on time, I checked my emails and Facebook a little, then rolled over and went back to sleep. Now, that’s pretty lazy. I lolligaggled and dillidallied for a couple of more hours, then did my meditations before starting my day.

My goal was to try and get up, showered, hair washed, and dressed before 5 pm. 🤦‍♀️ Didn’t make it today! It was about 5:45 before I got those goals accomplished.

Then, the highlight of my Sunday, FaceTime with my grand babies.

I celebrated my Sunday later with a toast to good health and happiness for all. It’s 5 o’clock somewhere. CHEERS!!!!🍷

If you’re starting to worry about me drinking too much during these trying times, don’t worry too much, it was cranberry grape juice in one of my pretty hand-painted wine glasses. CHEERS!

Saturday:) Some Special Friends and Shelf-Quarantined

26 Apr

“Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart.”

~ Eleanor Roosevelt


My life has always been blessed with special friends. I always say sharing is caring, and I like to share, but so do my friends. Just like the other day when Michele and David Bernard sent their son over to leave me a jar of their wonderful salsa.

Thursday, Kathy across the street asked if she could pick up me us up some dinner, and we sat out on my back patio and talked for hours,

Then yesterday, my friend Linda Grossman, “World’s Greatest Realtor, rang my bell and left a surprise at my door. She was caught on my doorbell camera.

What a wonderful surprise. An unexpected gift always says,”I’m thinking of you.” Oh yum!

Today, my neighbor Allison texted me and asked if I would like a freshly baked quiche. She had two, and wanted to share with me. How could I refuse?

See, I have so many special friends.

Now, for my SHELF-QUARANTINE story. Yes, you read it right, I am being shelf-quarantined. When all this self-imposed isolation started, I decided I was going to work on my “crap room.” I need to get organized and move a lot of things around. I ordered three plastic utility shelves and planned on taking the wooden shelves out and putting them into the spare room, creating a library. The boxes were big and heavy.

After I unpacked each box, I dragged each one to the base of the stairs, and using the head over heels method, I pushed them up the stairs. That was Step 1.

I emptied the first wooden shelf and tried to wiggle it out so I could drag it down the hall into the other room. I couldn’t budge it. I tried laying it down forward onto a big sheet, so I could drag it. I still couldn’t budge it.

The cool part was, that when I tipped the shelf down on the floor, a lucky dime fell from the top of the shelf. How did a dime get up there? A good sign.

I still couldn’t move it, so I pushed it back up and gave up, hoping I could get someone to help me move them.

A couple of days later, I was telling Mr. Mike my shelf story, and he offered to help, but he said he had some of those round plastic gliders for moving furniture. I said I’d give that a try first.

Tada! After several Herculean attempts, I moved all three heavy units all by myself. So, now I’m filling up these shelves with books and written materials and papers. I’m spending way to much time, putting pop-up books on one side in descending order of height. Art magazines got sorted by Christmas and other holidays and mediums. No, I didn’t alphabetize the books, but I was tempted. Way too much time on my hands. I’ll keep you posted on my “shelf-quarantining.” There is SO MUCH more to do.

Friday:) From Dust You Came, And From Dust You Shall Return

25 Apr

Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.

~ Pablo Picasso


Yesterday, I was inspired by my sister’s comments about her house being so dusty. She said that she dusted just last week, and everything was dusty already. That got me to thinking. I can’t remember the last time I dusted?

Then, it occurred to me that I never really noticed the dust because I never was home long enough to ever notice the dust. That, and having old eyes added to my dust indifference. Unfortunately, being home 24/7, I started to notice all the dust. Oh no! 🤦‍♀️

When I woke up, I grabbed my phone to check the time. Gosh, it was only 11:50 am, so I rolled over for another hour or so. Why get up, nowhere to go, nothing to do. When I finally got up and grabbed my phone on the night stand, YUK! It was SO dusty. How come I never noticed before?

I removed all the photos, keys, crosses, memorabilia, books, etc., and found all this dust.

But, I had to laugh because ‘neath all the junk, there was a lucky penny and feather waiting for me to say…”Good job! It’s about time!”

So, as I dusted each item and organized the clutter, I decided to go around the entire bedroom and dust every disgustingly dusty surface. I was in a dusting whirling dervish mood. (I tend to get carried away.)

While I dusted all the wood surfaces, I decided all the bed linens needed to be washed, including the huge king size comforter. How I got it to fit in my washing machine, I don’t know. But, I did. I’ll admit, the washer started walking across the laundry room and go “cachunk…cachunk” quite a few times.

Well, I hope this self-quarantine thing is over soon because I have a lot more dusty rooms to deal with. But, on the other hand, if we all came from dust and shall return to dust…. why bother? I should work on my art. As Picasso said, …Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.

Pablo Picasso

Happy Friday, my friends. Cheers!

Thursday Karaoke Night…”AT LAST”

24 Apr

“I never said I could sing well. Well, I’m gonna sing anyway.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


It’s Thursday night, and I’m missing my karaoke pals over at Delaney’s. I miss the laughter and the singing and the dancing. Oh, and I miss all the hugging. Most of all, the hugging. When this is all over, a lot of people are going to get squeezed to a pulp.”

I was fortunate tonight, because my neighbor across the street, Kathy, called today and asked if she could pick us up some dinner. She wants to reciprocate for all the food drop offs from the past. So, she picked up Chicken Express, and we sat on my back porch, 6 feet apart, of course, and talked and ate and talked well into the darkness. About 4 1/2 hours later, we came in, shocked that it was after 10pm. It was nice.

I checked Facebook and saw that Bob sang another beautiful song for us. “Don’t Let the Sun Come Down on Me.” He’s an amazing singer. I sang along, alone on my sofa. Hmmm? My sofa sing-along.

The song I’ve always wanted to sing and have loved forever is “AT LAST.” And when I think about the words… At last, my love has come along… I thought of the perfect loves in my life. My two sons, my family and friends, but most of all, my two beautiful granddaughters.

My daughter-in-law sent this amazing photo of the girls. It just melted my heart. To love and laugh with a child’s beautiful innocent heart.

My heart sings…

50th Anniversary of Earth Day~Love Your Planet

23 Apr

“In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.”



Earth Day is an annual event observed on April 22 in order to promote awareness about the environment and teach people to embrace nature. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the celebration which was founded in 1970 by Gaylord Nelson, a senator from Wisconsin.

This year’s theme is climate action.


The best way to celebrate Earth Day is to appreciate your little part of the planet every day. Everyone can pitch in by recycling, picking up trash, planting trees, flowers, vegetables, etc, but most of all… appreciate what Mother Nature has to offer.

I thought I’d share a few pictures of my little corner of the world. I marvel at every sunset, and I rejoice in every songbird.

Happy Earth Day

Tuesday:) Toni’s Tip of the Day

22 Apr

“Don’t let a single sunset slip past you unnoticed. Appreciate each day as if it was your last. You never know?”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


It was just a gorgeous warm sunny day today. This afternoon, after my daily meditations, I sat out in the back. my face bathing in the sun. Something about morning meditation makes you all calm and zen-like, at least for a little while.

A few phone calls and messages later, it was time for a nice long hot shower. I was looking forward to driving over to Miss Pat’s to do a curbside pic-up of food. About once a week, one of the girlfriends makes dinner for “the gang,” and the others add a dessert or side dish. Then, those who live further away, well, we can do curbside pickup. I go and pick up food for me and Jerry. I drop off Jerry’s dinner, then come home for my feast. Today was Taco Tuesday.

Today, Miss Pat outdid herself with homemade taco salad, and there was strawberry short cake and her world famous cookies. I haven’t been eating much dinner lately, but I devoured the whole thing. Except for dessert. That’s for later. Maybe tomorrow.

Thank you Miss Pat!!!

TIP #1- When you make friends, make friends that like to cook and bake.

After I ate, it was time for my walk. Woa! Not so easy to walk on a really full tummy. But, I love my evening walks. It was really cloudy this evening, so there was no spectacular sunset, but that’s OK. I saved my photos from last night. Last night the sunset was SO amazing.

TIP#2 “Don’t let a single sunset slip past you unnoticed. Appreciate each day as if it was your last. You never know?”

See those spectacular colors! Those are the actual colors, no adjustments, apps, or photoshop.

My Marvelous Manic Monday

21 Apr

“Just when you think your day is going to be one big boring maleficent mess, your doorbell rings with a surprise.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


I was having another lazy morning when I received a text from my neighbor. He asked if I could stop over at his house to take in a package that arrived while he was at work. Wow! A purpose, a goal, an inncentive to get out of my jammies before 5pm. Yay! I walked over and grabbed the package and put it in his house, then continued to walk about two miles. All this before noon! Wow!

When I got home, I sat on the sofa (I think there’s a big dent in my spot) and made some phone calls and checked Facebook, with the rest of the day looming gloomily ahead. Then, the doorbell rang.

By the time I got to the door, a young man was walking away and there was a small shopping bag at the door, and the young man waved and walked to his truck. I looked at the bag wondering what it could be, as I didn’t order anything. OH!!! It said “Bernard’s Gourmet Foods.” It was a beautifully wrapped jar of salsa and a lovely note from Michele and Davis Bernard, saying how much they appreciate my sharing there Facebook posts and videos.

I’ll be honest, if it wasn’t the WORLD’s BEST EVER SALSA, I probably wouldn’t be sharing. It really is wonderful. We have been friends since way back when David and Michele were just making salsa at home for us fortunate friends that used to come for visits and parties. Now, they have their salsas at HEB stores and several other stores and shops. They are famous!

Chef David has been making these wonderful videos on Facebook, sharing some of his wonderful recipes with their salsa with the rest of the world.

So, I decided to make my own video. It was such a coincidence because I was planning on making this yummy grilled sandwich using my salsa mixture tonight for dinner. Coincidence or karma?

My sandwich was fantastic. I was going to make another one to share, but I changed my mind. I’m having another one. 🤦‍♀️

Thank you Michele and David…you ROCK!