Monday, January 23, 2012

Chi Chi Chi

(Chipotle Chicken Chili)

1 pkg. Johnsonville Chipotle Chicken Sausages, cut into bit sized pieces
1 pkg. Birdseye C&W brand Ultimate Southwest Vegetable blend
1 can diced tomatoes
1 pkg. chili seasoning mix
or your own chili seasoning to taste

Mix and heat thoroughly. Easy and yummy. Serves 4.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Sausage and Bean Fiesta

1 pkg. Johnsonville Chipotle Chicken Sausages, sliced
1 can Bush's Grillin' Beans Black Bean Fuesta
1 can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped onions, bell pepper and celery.

Mix all ingredients in two-quart pot and heat thoroughly. Quick and easy and wonderfully tasty. Serves 4.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


©2012 by Laurie Kay Olson

I had dropped into bed early that night, too tired to dream. Sleep had come almost instantly, but it was not to last. Hours later something was wrong. I was flying by night, no longer safely asleep in bed. I looked out of the plane at the dark, snow-covered fields below. We wouldn’t be in the air much longer. We wouldn’t reach Colorado Springs. Jim was fighting to keep her aloft, swearing mightily under his breath. Strangely I became very aware of my tennis shoes. They no longer seemed connected to me.
The crash seemed to take forever. The impact, the dirt and snow spraying, the wrenching sound of tearing, dying metal – everything passed nightmarishly slow. Just as suddenly it all stopped, leaving an equally deafening silence. For long seconds nothing happened.
I lay in the wreckage staring at the night sky though the ripped fuselage. Dead? Alive? I wasn’t sure. I heard Jim sitting up, testing his limbs, standing. I couldn’t move. A cold realization that I was going to die struck me. That which I feared most. Perhaps I already was dead and just hadn’t yet departed my former corporeal home.
Jim stood looking out of the wreckage, then bent to see if I was still alive. I could feel his cold fingers pressing into my neck, but I couldn’t feel an answering thump against them. I tried to urge him to go for help, but I couldn’t speak. There just wasn’t enough of me left. He had to save himself, my life was already forfeit. I wouldn’t be here when he returned. I knew that now. I felt a sob lodged in my chest. Or was it my final breath?
He hesitated a moment, then climbed out and dropped into the snowy field. I listened to his retreating footsteps crunching through the snow, certain now that he would be safe. I would wait for death alone in the cold.
I jerked awake, still held captive by the dream, my heart pounding, a cold perspiration clinging to my skin. There had been a plane crash. Somehow I knew it had really happened. I tried to sleep, but couldn’t. In the cold gray dawn I crept shivering from my bed into the living room. The morning news might return me to reality.
I curled up on the couch under the old crocheted afghan and started to doze until the voice of the news anchor brought me back. I bolted upright. There had been a plane crash just north of Colorado Springs, not far from the Air Force Academy. The pilot had climbed out and gone for help, flagging down cars on I-25, while the passenger had died in the wreckage.
Somehow I had died in the night and yet hadn’t. I pressed my face into my hands and shuddered. What now? I considered bailing on work, to drive down to the Springs, to walk into the pilot’s hospital room like a crazy woman and try to find out if I was somehow connected to the one who had died. But even if I could get through, would it do anything more than terrorize a man who had already been through so much? I leaned back into the couch with a huge sigh.
The memory of an old gypsy woman who had gazed into her crystal ball for me came rushing back like a tidal wave. I had never understood her words. Now they held an eerie clarity for me and they seemed to echo in my head. “You are a dream-walker, child, you like to travel at night.”

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Year in Review

Okay, it's my birthday again. I'm not going to dwell on how many years. Just over the last year. It was quite a year. I was finally working full-time hours again. Then I fell and hurt myself on the steps at work. I hurt my low back and broke and cracked my right thumb. So I was off of work for awhile. The story of how this happened is a story for another time and will probably appear later in this blog. I gardened the summer away as usual. I spent the month of November writing a novel. Small pieces of it can be seen under Succotash County on this blog. And in December I was laid off from my job the week before Christmas. So a year of ups and downs and some serious upheaval. I hope that the year ahead will prove to be fruitful and happy.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Croonin' Country

(c) 2009 by Laurie Kay Olson

You jist cain’t sing a cowboy tune
You gotta know the way to croon
Settin’ on the back o’ your horse
With your trusty guitar, of course.
You gotta find yourself a twang
Like the cry of the wild mustang.

You jist cain’t croon a cowboy song
It’s too easy to get it wrong.
Rememb’rin' sad tales you’ve told’ll
Help you to master your yodel.
If you have serious talent
Add a touch of a hick accent.

That’s when you should be good to go
Into the saddle for the show.
Then wail about some tumble weeds,
Winding trails and pale ghostly steeds.
Sing about those ol’ jingling spurs
Like your shorts was full of burrs.

You’ll know if you have done it right
If you start a proper bar fight.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Local Woman Faces Drunk Driving Charges

 (c) 2007 by Laurie Kay Olson

Well, just about everyone ‘round these parts
Knows how our ol’ cow Bessie can be.
She’s had the wanderlust ever since she was a calf.
An’ her momma took her off to see the Wilfey’s tree farm
That one Christmas years an’ years ago.
Eny-who, she went missing on one o’ her weekly jaunts
AN’ I followed her trail out back o’ the hay barn,
‘Round the back forty, and acrost Idjit Creek.
It was an easy to trail her, mind you,
Since her bowels were loosened up by
The free sample of Ex-Lax she are when she
Stopped by the drugstore earlier this week.
She had gone through the woods down where all
The teenagers go to watch submarine races
Least ways that’s what Earl an’ me used it for way back
When we were young an’ sufferin’ in love an’ such.
Boy if that ol’ Ford pick-up truck could talk.
Eny-who, after I cared several kids outta a year’s growth
As I tried to sneak past their cars, but forgot meself
An’ gave Bessie an extra loud holler to come home.
I ended up comin’ out behind ol’ Doug Miller’s place
In the clearin’ where he has his still goin’ night an’ day.
It was there that I saw ol’ Bessie standin’ with her back to me,
Swayin’ back an’ forth, an’ I’d swear she was hummin’ to herself.
But maybe that was just the sound of the still.
It smelled like ol’ Doug was makin’ up a big batch
O’ his special butterscotch scotch.
That’s the stuff that’ll get you drunk an’ give you
A sugar high all at the same time, not to mention the hangover from both.
Ol’ Bessie turned ‘round an’ give out a big ol’ snort right in my face.
The fumes coulda peeled pain, if there’d been any paint to peel.
She’d been chewin’ on the leftover fermented grain
An’ was drunker ‘n’ a skunk eatin’ stink berries in the fall.
I eased a halter over her head as she tried to kiss me.
Least ways she was a happy drunk.
With a large measure o’ pullin’ , pleadin’ an’ cajolin’
I managed to git her out onto County Road 8 ¼
With her headed toward home swingin’ and a swayin’
Then ol’ Harlan Tucker in his patrol car come by at the wrong time
An’ nearly hit head on when he zigged an’ ol’ Bessie zagged.
He musta already been in a het up mood, ‘cause he arrested me
Right on the spot for drunk drivin’ an’ took me in.
He aint’ get a leg to stand on though.
Once we talked to the judge he pointed out that the law
Specifically states the drivin’ of a vehicle, not farm animals, while impaired.
The judge looked at Sheriff Tuttle over his glasses an’ suggest
That he try arrestin’ the cow for public intoxication an’ see how that went.
That is if he didn’t mind bein’ a bigger fool than he’d already made o’ himself.