Friday Fare: 12/18/20

One of the most enjoyable interactions I had this week on social media had to do with a text my mom sent me:

As I state in my post above, my kiddos are kinda strange about what they eat. My oldest hates ice cream and frosted cakes, but if I haul out one of my great-grandma Florence’s recipes that includes things like molasses and walnuts, he’s all in. Of course, my youngest is the polar opposite and will eat EVERYTHING unless it has raisins or nuts. But when I let them take a bite of pecan pie this week, they were both fans.

So I texted my mom for her favorite tassie recipe and she came through with a picture and a text with an old Lutheran church cookbook recipe. In case you can’t see it on the post, here’s the recipe from Mrs. Clarence Sivesind:

Prize Tassies

1 c. butter (room temperature                                           2 c. sifted flour
2 (3 oz.) pkg of cream cheese

Cream these ingredients together. Roll into balls and press into mini muffin tins. Fill tin/dough balls 3/4 full with the following filling:

3 eggs (slightly beaten)                                                       Dash of salt
1 1/2 c. brown sugar                                                            1 tsp. vanilla
2 T. butter (melted)                                                              1 c. pecans, chopped

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Cool before lifting out with a fork.

Happy eating friends.

One of my friends left a comment on Instagram asking what tassies are. I basically think of them as miniature pecan pies, but according to the Interwebs, tassies are Scottish in origin and are miniature pies or tarts. I’ve always associated tassies with my Norwegian relatives (and the cookbook cited above comes from a VERY Scandinavian congregation), but apparently, I’ve been wrong about that for 40+ years.


Reading: I finished Laura Lippman‘s “My Life as a Villainess” (fantastic) and am still reading Kate Baer‘s “What Kind of Woman.”

Writing: A lot of people have talked about how challenging it is to be creative during a pandemic. I don’t think it’s necessary to add my voice to the fray, except to chime in that it’s been HARD. 🙂  But what I’ve been doing is taking advantage of opportunities to listen in on various writing-related webinars. But in writing … I have a project that I need to finish before the end of the year with a couple of my dear friends. I am going to be querying Dragonfly in earnest starting Q1 of 2021.

I think there’s a light at the end of the tunnel called 2020 and I’m hoping it’s not an oncoming train. But … be kind, be gracious, wear a mask, and don’t snap at grocery store workers, USPS/FedEx/UPS personnel, or any of those folx who are just doing the best job that they can under weird-ass circumstances.

AND … since the next couple of Fridays coincide with Christmas and New Years, I’m going to wish you my very best and will pick up Friday Fare on January 6, 2021!

– Shelley


What is Friday Fare? As a recap, on Fridays I post link love to the various bits of arcane shiz I discover on the Interwebs.  I liken it to a glimpse into my mind, but without the 80s song lyrics or mental cobwebs.


Friday Fare: 12/11/20

I have three friends … THREE! … who have books that came out this week. And I’ve said this on social media and I mean it – if I’m ever at a point in my life where I’m not in AWE of the collective talent of my friends and acquaintances, I’ve become too jaded for words.

So, huge congrats to my mentor and my beer drinking buddy Jerry Johnson for the release of his latest anthology of essays: Coot Dogs – An Anthology of Dog Stories by a Crazy Old Coot. I always tell Jerry that when I read his essays, I feel like he’s eavesdropped on every holiday conversation my father and his brothers have ever had. Ergo, Jerry’s work is the perfect holiday gift for that hard-to-buy-for male in your life. (And in this case, anyone who’s ever loved a dog.) Books are currently available on Amazon, but he’ll also have signed copies at Dragonfly Books in Decorah, Iowa.

Also – set down your coffee or whatever you’re drinking right now and click on this post from Jerry. This one was a balm in this dumpster fire of a year.

I had the absolute joy of beta reading Priscilla Paton’s latest book Should Grace Fail, book two in her Twin Cities Mysteries series. I adore the relationship between her main characters Detectives Deb Metzger and Erik Jansson. This book also has a memorable cast of minor characters. Signed copies of Paton’s latest will be available at Once Upon A Crime Books in Minneapolis, books are also available on Amazon.

Anthony W. Eichenlaub is a beloved friend of my family and one hell of a writer. His e-book Of A Strange World Made was released this week and is available through Amazon/Kindle. From his blog post: “… Welcome to the world of Sky, where the colony of Edge lives at the forward boundary of humanity and science. Ash Morgan doesn’t have a problem breaking rules, but things are getting ridiculous and she might not know where to stop.”


Listening: This clip has been a favorite constant over the past couple of months. I know that I’m a few decades behind the times, but I am OK with it.

Reading: I’m still working my way through Laura Lippman‘s “My Life as a Villainess” and Kate Baer‘s “What Kind of Woman.”

Writing: … locusts? Ha!

Wear your mask. Wash your hands. If you’re in a spot where you can buy local or give money to organizations who are helping others, please do so. Be kind to everyone you meet. – Shelley


What is Friday Fare? As a recap, on Fridays I post link love to the various bits of arcane shiz I discover on the Interwebs.  I liken it to a glimpse into my mind, but without the 80s song lyrics or mental cobwebs.


Friday Fare: 12/4/20

(Whispers.) It’s December.

I think we’re all on board when it comes to the reality that 2020 has been a brutally long year. And while I am not one to wish time away, the dawning of this decade can go eff itself.

Anyway … it’s December. I don’t have much to add to this, but if you head on down to my recap below, you’ll see that I haven’t totally been just moping around and drinking beer.


Miscellany: I’ve had two things happen recently that made me think “I want to blog about that!”  One is that we bought a treadmill and I’ve been trying to get into podcasts while I’m walking. Right now I’ve started Dana Kaye’s “Branding Outside the Box” podcast. Dana’s a publicist that I’ve gotten to know through the mystery world and it’s to the point where if I know she’s going to be facilitating an online class or conference, I’ll sign up. She’s just a fantastically organized human being. I’m two episodes in so far and I’m enjoying it.

Also, I finally finished all five seasons of watching “Boardwalk Empire”. It was well-acted and written, it was fairly violent, but it was a great distraction over the past few months.  Hubs and I also have made a Friday night date where we catch up on Disney’s “The Mandalorian” and watch a few episodes of “Schitt’s Creek.”

Reading: It took about two months, but I finally finished Cal Newport’s “Deep Work.” I will revisit it at some point to solidify what I read, but there was some good lessons there that could be applied to a non-pandemic world.

Also, a very strange trend in 2020 reading has been the number of vampire novels I’ve been consuming. I discovered Christine Feehan’s books – they were OK, but Jeanene Frost and Chloe O’Neill were the standouts of this genre.

I am also reading Laura Lippman‘s “My Life as a Villainess.” It’s a fantastic collection of essays that I’ve been savoring with my coffee.  Same with Kate Baer‘s debut collection of poetry “What Kind of Woman.”

Writing: … you can insert the sound of crickets here.

Wear your mask. Wash your hands. Get takeout from a local restaurant. Be kind to everyone you meet. – Shelley


What is Friday Fare? As a recap, on Fridays I post link love to the various bits of arcane shiz I discover on the Interwebs.  I liken it to a glimpse into my mind, but without the 80s song lyrics or mental cobwebs.