Monthly Archives: July 2008

What I’m Watching…

What am I currently watching on television? Well, not much on network television that is! My cable channels of preference are the Travel Channel, TV Land, The Food Network and Home & Garden Television (aka HGTV).

This summer both the Food Network and HGTV have been running “reality-type” shows. On the Food Network it’s been “The Next Food Network Star”, where contestants are picked from thousands of applicants, come to New York City to compete for their own show on the Food Network. This past Sunday night was the finale for this season! If you’ve been following the show, you know that they had three finalists that came back to New York to compete in the final showdown. My votes went to Adam, from Philadelphia. I liked him from the beginning, his humor, and how he did in the finale with his “show”. The finalists had to create their own show, with the help of Food Network staff, and then went on air! From this they were judged, and the winner declared. Aaron, from Camden, NJ came home the winner, with his show “Big Daddy’s Kitchen”. I can’t wait to see the show as it premiers this coming Sunday at 1:30 pm. Good luck Aaron!

Following the “Next Food Network Star” came HGTV’s “Next Design Star”, where again, a number of contestants from across the country descended on Nashville, TN to become the star of their own HGTV show. This week the two remaining finalists were flown to New Orleans, and their challenge was to rebuild and design the kitchen, dining room and living room of two families who lost everything in 2005 hurricane. It was touching to hear the stories of the homeowners, and to see their rooms go from bare studded walls and floors to beautiful new rooms! Each designer is very deserving of being the next design star and having their very own HGTV show! I don’t know who will be the winner — Matt or Jennifer! It’s very hard to vote! We find out next Sunday who wins!

Perhaps my all-time favorite television show from childhood through adulthood is “I Love Lucy”. Those that know me are fully aware of my fascination with this classic t.v. show! As a child I vividly remember watching this program on a black and white television and having a blast discovering the antics of Lucy and Ethel and how they exasperated Ricky and Fred each week! Back then, these shows in reruns, were “new” episodes for me, ones I had never seen before.

As years went by I would watch them over and over, and today, I am sure I’ve seen many of them dozens of time! I even know the dialogue in many of the episodes! Over the past several years I have been fortunate enough to acquire the entire series on high quality DVD’s! Lucy will be around for many years to come!

What is my favorite episode? Well, you may think the Lucy and Ethel in the chocolate factory episode, but the one I think is classic Lucy is when she discovers new neighbors moving into an apartment in the building (at 623 E 68th Street, which is upper Manhattan, but this address does not exist as I’ve found out through research – it was fictitious – but I do have a photo of a street sign taken along E 68th Street from a trip to New York City in 1996), and Ricky forbids her to go “visit” them. When did Lucy every take Ricky’s advice?!? She sneaks into the apartment to “just look around” and discovers the tenants are about to enter. Quickly, in true Lucy style, she heads to a closet and attempts to figure out a way to escape! Soon we see Lucy as a “chair” — she’s put on a slip cover and transformed herself into a chair!! It’s hilarious to see Lucy, hidden underneath the slip cover, in one of her best comedic performances!

I’d be interested to hear what you favorite Lucy episode is! (Do you know what the Ricardo’s phone number was? Murray Hill 5-9099. What was their apartment number, the one with the window? 3-D).


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Posted by on July 29, 2008 in Just for Fun!


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Weekend Worship

Hello friends — it’s another “worship weekend at church”. When I picked up my music packet last Friday I quickly had to see what songs were selected for August 2/3. This was another God-ordained moment, the songs were ones I’ve come to love and have taught me about His almighty power and goodness. Among the music charts was the old hymn “Praise to the Lord, the Almighty”, one of my all-time favorites. The scriptures tells us to “Praise Him for His acts of power; praise Him for His surpassing greatness.” Psalm 150:1-2. The book of Psalms has so many uplifting and encouraging words – many have been set to hymns and chorus’. I’m thrilled that we will be worshipping with this hymn!

I have found a new web site called “Cyberhymnal” – check it out of you long for the old hymns! Another great find is RUF Hymnbook Online.

Come worship with me this weekend! We have a slight “adjustment” to schedules at Salem Alliance Church. Saturday services are 5:00 pm only; Sunday remains the same with services at 8:00, 9:30 and 11:00 am. There are no Cedar Hall services. This is for the month of August only.

Psalm 37:4

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Posted by on July 29, 2008 in Church Life


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Dale’s Famous Carrot Cake

I’ve often been asked what my favorite dessert is that I enjoy making. Well, there are many but I have to say it’s probably my Carrot Cake. Here’s my recipe, complete with the “secret” ingredients that make this recipe stand out from others.

2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
4 medium eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons good vanilla extract
3 cups grated carrots
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine the sugar, oil, and eggs in a large bowl and blend well. Thoroughly mix together the dry ingredients. Add the vanilla and dry ingredients to the egg mixture. Stir in the carrots and nuts. Pour the batter into a 9″ x 13″ baking pan and bake for 40-45 minutes. Frost with your favorite cream cheese frosting.

This is easy to make and doesn’t take a lot of time to put together. Enjoy!

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Posted by on July 26, 2008 in Just for Fun!


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Mom’s Fruit Cocktail Cake

This is one of my mom’s all-time great desserts! She made it for church potlucks, and many other occassions. It’s easy to make and tastes great! Enjoy!

1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 16 oz. can fruit cocktail (do not drain)
1 egg

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Pour batter into a greased (I recommend a cooking spray) 8″ x 8″ baking pan. Sprinkle 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1/2 cup chopped nuts over the top.

Bake for approximately 45 minutes or until a toothpick of cake tester comes out clean when inserted in the center.

Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream topping! Yum!

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Posted by on July 25, 2008 in Just for Fun!


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Important Cell Phone Information

The other evening on the local news was a story on cell phones and the fact that we’ve programmed the numbers for our friends and family, but may be forgetting about some very important contacts that could get us out of a pinch. Here’s a list of the top 10 phone numbers we should have in our cell phone:

  1. Your credit card company(s)
  2. Your car insurance company
  3. Automobile Association (AAA)  or road-side assistance
  4. Locksmith
  5. Health insurance company
  6. Your doctor(s)
  7. Airline(s)
  8. Information – 411 or 1-800-GOOG-411 (this is a free call!)
  9. Coworker’s number
  10. Your home and work numbers

After hearing the story I realized the importance of each of the numbers, and why they should be in our cell phone address book. Why the airline number? If you’ve ever been stranded, missed a flight due to weather or mechanical delays, and to avoid the L-O-N-G line at a ticket counter or gate, if you have the reservations number of the airline you’re flying, you can call and get re-booked on another flight. And, if you’re a frequent flyer with premium or elite status (silver, gold, platinum, etc, depending on the airline) you will have a special toll-free number to call for customer service.


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Posted by on July 19, 2008 in Life in General



“Light the Night Walk” for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

You may not be familiar with this organization, but it is an important one helping to fight the blood cancers that people are stricken with. Known as the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, they hold the “Light the Night Walk”. This annual walk is an event to raise funds for cures. It’s the nation’s night to pay tribute and bring hope to thousands of patients and their families.

Funds that are raised through the “Light the Night Walk” support the work of hundreds of the world’s best and brightest researchers in their search for better therapies and cures for leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma.

Three years ago I became involved in the Portland, OR Light the Night Walk. It was thrilling to see the thousands of people, touched in some way by the blood cancers, come together. This was my first event of this nature and was deeply touched by the number of people who were walking in honor or in memory of a family member or friend.

It hit home how serious these blood cancers are. I lost my mother to lymphoma in 1999, and have set out to help raise funds for this important cause. There are several ways to get involved with the Portland, OR walk (which will be October 3, 2008). You can make a donation to support my goal of raising $300. Donations can be made on line at my personal web site that I’ve created. All contributions are tax deductible, and transactions are through a secured web server. Or, you can join me the night of October 3, 2008 in downtown Portland at the World Trade Center as a volunteer to help with set-up or registration; then walk with “Team Dale” as thousands of others wind through the city. The walk is not long, and is easy.

Please visit my personal walk site at where you can find more information. Please give me a call if you have questions! Let’s find cures for these blood cancers!

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Posted by on July 14, 2008 in Life in General


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Chocolate Comfort Food

If you are a chocolate lover, and enjoy comfort food, you’ll enjoy my recipe for “Collectors Cocoa Cake”. You will find the receipe (I think it is still printed) on the Hersey’s cocoa can. Anyway, try this oh so good cake sometime, for a special treat, special occassion, or just “because”. Treat yourself! This is good!



3/4 cup butter
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla (use good vanilla)
2 cups unsifted all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa (use a good cocoa)
1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cup water

Cream butter or margarine and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanila; beat 1 minute at medium speed with an electric mixer. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt, add alternately with water to creamed mixture. Pour the batter into 2 greased and floured cake pans. Bake at 350 degrees (pre-heat your over) for 35-40 minutes for 8 inch pans; 30-35 minutes for 9 inch pans. Cool for 10 minutes; remove from pans. Cool completely and frost with Chocolate Buttercream frosting.

6 tablespoons butter (softened)
3/4 cup cocoa (use a good cocoa)
2 2/3 cup unsifted confectioner’s sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla (use a good vanilla)

Cream butter in small mixer bowl. Add the cocoa and confectioners’ sugar alternately with milk, beat to spreading consistency (additional tablespoon of milk may be needed). Blend in vanilla. Yield: Approximately two cups frosting.

People ask me about making a cake from scratch, and whether or not if it is difficult. It isn’t that complicated to make this delicious, and oh so good cake! The secret? Don’t over beat the batter, and beat for the recommended time in the receipe. Often times people will beat a cake batter longer than it should and the cake will come out not so good!

You may remember, if you’re a baby boomer from the 1950’s, when mom made a chocolate cake for a family gathering, church potluck, charity event, etc…I make this often when I need to bring a dessert to a function. I am asked for the receipe and love sharing it with others! If you want to score points with a dessert, try this one! What I like to do is fill the layers with a really good jam filling such as raspberry or an orange marmlade! This lets you use a bit more frosting on the cake! Or better yet, lick the spatula or bowl. I remember hanging out in my mom’s kitchen when she frosted a cake so I could like the mixer beaters! Sunbeam Mixmasters had great beaters that held the frosting!


Chef Dale


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Posted by on July 14, 2008 in Just for Fun!


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