Country Chatter Newsletter
March 2012                     

Welcome to the "new" Country Chatter







Calico Kitten Designs is so happy to welcome Country Chatter Newsletter to our website.
The newsletter is just my way of sharing my part of the world with everyone, and helping people with their businesses. I am hoping to make the world just a little bit better for a couple minutes, to bring a laugh or a smile to your face and just a way of saying thanks.

It has been a long time since Country Chatter has been around but it is time for the newsletter to come back.  I have missed my friends and want to keep in touch with everyone now.  So........ we are back.  If you do not want to receive the newsletter, please let me know and I will take you off the mailing list.

There will be some new features and a lot of the old ones.

We have a new member of the family, who we named Noel but........... Keith wants to change her name to Happy Feet.  We have not had a kitten with as much energy as this one, and she just dances around the house and jumps on everything.

Noel/Happy Feet

I have been working on the house, endless job and hoping to get it done this year.  If I would quit checking my mind about how I want it, I will probably get it done.  Besides just working on it on the weekends does not give you a lot of time to do anything.  Since I have gotten a new camera, I will share photos of things that are done.

Joanne and I went to Phoenix Quilt, Craft and Sewing Festival at the end of the January.  Once again, it was not as crowded as it has been in past years.  Lots of fabric, quilting stuff, and more vendors than there have been in past years.  I was doing the happy dance, there was a cross stitch vendor and I went crazy there.  The nice thing about there not being a lot of people there, was that we got to talk to the vendors and learned new ideas.

Claudia and I went to the Chocolate Festival in downtown Glendale, chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate and lots of people.  Once again there wasn't as many vendors as in the past but lots of chocolate and bands.  We ventured down to Cerreta's, we got to see them make chocolate strawberries and white chocolate pretzels, which they let us sample.

One of the best parts of last year was that some of my friends from Chicago were driving out to Los Angeles and made a stop in Phoenix just so they could see me.  You see back in the old days, I was at matchmaker, Judy and Mike were one of my success stories.  We all met in downtown Glendale at the Brick Oven Pizza and had a wonderful time.  They got to meet Claudia and see Morlene again and we talked and talked and talked.  Their son is becoming a movie producer out in Las Angeles, so I will let you know when he becomes famous.

Morlene and I went to New Mexico for four day to go to a wedding on the Navajo Reservation.  We drove there and there sure is a lot of empty land in Northern Arizona but sure is beautiful. The house are about 1/2 mile to  1 mile away from each other, and the Arizona side is real poor but when you get to the New Mexico side, the reservation improves.  The wedding was on the Reservation at a church that they built themselves, the bride and groom were in Native American Attire. The weather was beautiful, so the dinner was served in tent outside.  We drove up to Durango on Sunday for a Fine Arts Festival.  The town is nestled in the mountains with all kinds of old buildings but what was so wonderful, it was so green.  So different than here in the Valley.

Today was one of those days that you want to brag about, it started out with a yard sale at Claudia's Mobile Home park.  I got to see all her grandkids and her great grandkids, too and of course had to buy some stuff.  Then on to downtown Glendale, they were having a Paris Market in downtown and Catlin Court.  There was a Craft Fair going on and had to stop and check it out. It is only once a month, the first Saturday of the month and loads of crafters and vendors and once again had to get some stuff and talked to the vendors about the spaces and sales.  So............... am thinking about doing it in the Fall.

I have been quilting and cross stitching, and making things for the craft shows this fall.  It is so nice to have a big table in the dining room to work on.





Girlfriend Wisdom

Notice of Eviction

Deadline :  Today
Location:  Your own mind
Items for Immediate Removal

Things That Worry you
Things that are out of your control
Things that are none of your business
Thoughts that are on a loop-system in your mind and go
'round and round, and round

For Immediate Occupancy
Location:  Your own mind

Tasks that have been organized for completion in three to five steps
Time allotted for celebration of accomplishments
Laughter - telling yourself a funny story or viewing a sweet picture of a loved one.

Girlfriend Wisdom

Following the above actions will open your heart and mind for a more joy filled day
for both yourself and those around you..


Activities Around the Valley

This is for my friends who need a little reminder about what is going on around my part of the world.
Well, this is the time of the year that we all live out for out here, not to hot and not to cold, you need a light jacket at night.  So much to do, go and enjoy before it gets too hot.
Time to take a class or two at the Park District or your local craft shop

Spring Training is alive and well out here, with both The Cubs and The White Sox
playing here in the Valley.

And my favorite - The Farm at South Mountain is open again
Check it out at

Phoenix Community Farmer's Market
Located at 721 N. Central Ave. Phoenix
Hours - Every Wednesday 4pm to 8 pm
Every Saturday 8am to Noon
Worth the trip down to see it.

St. Patrick's Day - March 17th - have to celebrate - I had an Irish Grandmother

Sahuaro Ranch Park Historic Area -
March 24-25 - Glendale Folk & Heritage Festival

March 24-25 - Rubber Stamp & Scrapbook Expo
Glendale Civic Center - Downtown Glendale

Open Air Market - Historic Downtown Glendale
First Saturday of April - 9am to 4pm - 5734 W. Glendale Ave.


Crafter's Corner

If you are in the Phoenix area and are interested in any shows, please get in touch with the kittens, opps I mean kitties at and they will be more than happy to send you a list of shows.

Calico Kitten Designs is looking for crafters that would like to move into the website, if you are interested, please email me
and I will send you all the details -

I would still like to start a Quilting Club for quilters or anyone who would like to give it a try.  Since I am quilting again, I would like to get the club going, I know any quilter has tons of fabric just laying around the house.  I know I do, have told Claudia to hit me if I buy any more fabric except for backing material.  I want to start a mailing list of people who would be interested in doing this.  Each month, you will send to one person on the list, four 5 inch squares of fabric of one theme.   We will do this for 3 months with one theme and then choose another theme for the next 3 months.  At the end of the three months, please design something with your fabric and send me a photo and I will put it in the newsletter with your name and website.  If you are interested in doing this, please email the staff at and please put quilts in the message line.

Bear is in charge of link exchanges and was wondering if anyone would like to exchange links with Calico Kitten Designs.
You can get in touch with him at and he will be more than happy to sent you ours. One small note from Bandit, if you have any EXTRA Pringles (the original favor) he will make sure that you on the front page of the links.

Potpourri Pie

Baker's Clay
1 cup flour
1 cup salt
water to moisten
Mix together flour and salt, and stir in enough water to from a workable, but not sticky dough.  Shape into whatever
 you like.  Either cook baker's clay in the oven at 250 degrees for at least 30 minutes per side, or let it air dry.
You can also microwave it in a glass container or microwave baking sheet.  Spray container with cooking spray and microwave
baker's clay pieces at 30% power for 2-4 minutes, depending on size.  If pieces are not dry, continue microwaving at
30% for 2 minutes intervals.

To make pie, you will need
1 pie tin, in the size of your choice
cooking spray
Butter Knife
Prepare baker's clay and spray pie tin with cooking spray.  Preheat over to 250 degrees.
  Roll out baker's clay into large circle about 1/4 inch thick.  Cut circle,
just as you would for making a normal pie, and line pie tin with it.  Wrap up remaining
dough for later.  Cook pie crust for at least 30 minutes.  Let cool.
Filled cooled crust with potpourri.  Take remaining dough scraps, re-roll and cut into
 strips for lattice crust.  Arrange strips over potpourri, in the same way you
would make a normal lattice crust pie,  dampen dough to "glue" it down to already cooked crust.  Let top crust dry for 1-2 days. 
After pie is complete, add an
accent bow of raffia or homespun fabric for that finishing touch.















Each and every month, there will be a special section for them. 
This month we are featuring just some wonderful recipes

If you would like to have yours in
the next issue of Country Chatter, please email Bandit at
and he just loves samples.

Chocolate Grasshopper Cheesecake
30 fudge mint cookies, crushed (about 1 3/4 cups)
2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
4 oz. semisweet baking chocolate
3 packages (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
4 eggs
1/3 cup green crème de menthe liqueur
Topping and Garnish, if desired
Sweetened whipped cream
Crème de menthe thin rectangular candies for garnish,
 unwrapped, cut in half diagonally

Heat oven to 300 degrees.  Wrap foil around bottom and side of ungreased 9-inch
springform pan.  In large bowl, mix crust ingredients with fork until crumbly.
Press in bottom and 1 inch up side of pan.  Bake 12 minutes.  Cool 30 minutes.
In small microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate in High 45 to 60 seconds, stirring
once halfway through microwaving, until melted.  If necessary, continue to microwave
on High in 15-second increments, stirring until smooth.  Set aside.
In large bow, beat cream cheese and sugar with electric mixer on medium speed,
scraping bowl frequently, until smooth and creamy.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating
until smooth after each addition.  Stir in liqueur.  Pour filling evenly over crust.
Drop 8 to 10 tablespoonfuls melted chocolate randomly onto filling, allowing
chocolate to sink into filling.  With table knife or small spatula, cut through
chocolate and filling to swirl for marbled design.
Bake 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes or until set 2 inches from edge of pan.
Remove from oven; run knife around side of cheesecake to loosen.  Return to oven;
turn oven off and open door slightly.  Cool cheesecake in oven 1 hour.  Remove from
oven to cooling rack; cool at room temperature 1 hour.  Refrigerate 3 hours.
To serve, remove side of pan.  Spoon whipped cream into decorating bag with
large star tip, squeeze bag to pipe cream around top edge of cheesecake. 
Garnish with candies.

Chocolate Tea Bread

In a large mixing bowl, combine and mix the following ingredients with an electric
beater, about 2 minutes.

1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup applesauce
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup oil
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
Fold in:
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray bread pans or muffin cups with nonstick spray.  Recipe makes
one large loaf or two small loaves plus 12 miniature muffins.  Bake large load for 60 to 70 minutes
or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Bake small loaves for 30 to 30 minutes or until done.
bake miniature muffins for 10 to 15 minutes, and test for doneness.  Be careful not to overbake.
Cool in pans for 10 minutes before removing to cooling rack to cool completely.
If desired, sprinkle tops of unbaked muffins with a mixture of 1 tablespoon granulated sugar and
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon.


Well, I hope that you have made it down to this little part, I love talking about
Arizona, sharing this state with everyone.  I want to share a part of my world
with everyone and doing this newsletter is my way of thanking everyone for being a friend. 
Calico Kitten Designs will be joining Facebook this month and if I can figure it out we will have a blog, too.  Next month we will be featuring one of the shops in downtown Glendale and some recipes from a cookbook that I found that was my mom's during World War II.
Say a prayer for our Armed Forces and pray that they will be home soon. 
Wear some green on St. Patty's Day and enjoy some Corned Beef.
Happy St. Patty's Day/

Count your blessings, hug your family and friends,
thanks for being a part of Country Chatter

Cindy and the Kittens


Country Chatter
Cindy Kingren
(after 3 pm - pacific time)