Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Goodbye August, Hello September

Thank God Its Monday and, as such, #HappyMonday to everyone! I personally look forward to all Mondays because they’re my 52 Chances a year, in which I get to share Memories of My Mom with you!


This week we say goodbye to August and hello to September, which begins on Friday. Friday is also the start of Labor Day Weekend – the unofficial end of summer and beginning of fall. September is said to be one of the most temperate months of fall. However, technically, fall is only during the last week or so of the month. So not a fair assessment.

September is also known as the harvest month. Thus, farmer’s markets and harvest festivals are in abundance throughout the month. By the way, did you know that September’s Harvest Moon is the fullest moon of the year?

The kids go back to school the day after Labor Day if they haven’t already. Regular season football begins next week. The days are getting noticeably shorter, as we inch closer to the fall equinox. The nights are getting cooler. Many of us will soon be packing away our swimsuits, shorts, and tank tops as we pull out our blue jeans, corduroys, flannels, and sweats.

Little bits of color changes have already started to pop here and there among the trees in Michigan. But more color is on its way, throughout the month. Oktoberfest celebrations will soon begin, too (Americanized to a September observance because the weather is nicer then). By the way, National Drink-Beer-Day is September 28th.

September also observes, among other things, Better Breakfast Month, National Blueberry Popsicle Month, National Chicken Month, National Courtesy Month, National Honey Month, National Italian Cheese Month, National Library Card Sign Up Month, National Mushroom Month, National Potato Month, National Rice Month, National Sewing Month, National Self-Improvement Month, and National Whole Grains Month!


As seen in…

Gloria Pitzer’s Mixed Blessings – Recipes & Remedies (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; March 1984, p. 23)


…THROUGHOUT UPSTATE MICHIGAN, the roads borough through tunnels of green trees for miles and miles. There’ll be light traffic on these curving two-lane highways with single cars spaced two blocks or so apart coming toward you.

There was the quaint and very unique Settling Inn at the Village of Northport, the most northern point of M-22. Farther south there was the Sugarfoot Saloon at Leelanau, near the Sugarfoot Mountain Resort. It was quiet country, secluded but refreshing, compared to sophisticated urban activity.

At County Road 669, a sign announced ‘Sleeping Bear Dunes’ straight ahead on M-22. The road curved like a long licorice ribbon up and down the hillsides of densely grown white birches, Scotch pines, maples, oaks and poplars. Suddenly we were conscious of how clean the air smelled.

The city wasn’t like this! What a lovely contrast! What a splendid memory! The first time we saw the Traverse Bay area, in upstate Michigan, we fell in love with it. It was Labor Day [weekend] and summer was still at the peak of its promise.

Six weeks later, we went back to the bay area to feast our eyes on the glorious, fiery colors of fall. There was a crisp, clean chill in the air. Those long, straight, two-lane roads through the peninsula still lay like licorice ribbons on the slopes and hills of the Old Mission region.

The side roads were cut like corridors through a series of canopies in brilliant orange, red, and yellow; where the trees were all standing like military sentries in full dress uniforms, crossing their branches above the roads like honor guards with their swords raised high.

It was a trip back into another time zone – peaceful valleys and wooded hillsides abundant with sturdy hedges of tall trees framing well-manicured cherry orchards, acres upon acres of them, as well as apple groves in great abundance everywhere!

Here and there a farmhouse and a weather-worn, well-kept barn reminded you that it was a populated and prosperous region, after all. The prosperity appeared to represent hard work, a practical living style and simplicity of needs, unlike the atmosphere of city dwelling.

There really aren’t any “traditional customs” for observing Labor Day. Yet, there are so many different ways to celebrate it, including family and community picnics, parades, outdoor concerts, festivals, fireworks and even shopping; as retailers always offer huge Labor Day weekend deals and discounts to move the rest of their summer stock.

Below is a picture of me, my siblings, and 2 neighbor-boys, standing in front of the Algonac Lions Club trolly that was in all of our local parades. I think this was from Labor Day weekend, 1970, and we got to ride on the trolley, with Dad, during the parade.

How do you celebrate the unofficial end of summer – one last vacation, a day at the beach, or a barbeque in the backyard? Mom liked to celebrate right at home…

Decades ago, when my siblings and I were kids, I think the only reason Mom celebrated Labor Day was because it meant that we were going back to school the next day and she could start her vacation! Pictured below is one of Mom’s syndicated editorial columns, from August 1971 – she called it School Begins and so Does Mother’s Vacation.


As seen in…

Gloria Pitzer’s Mixed Blessings – Recipes & Remedies (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; March 1984, pp. 178-179)


FOR A LONG TIME now, I’ve had trouble sleeping at night. For one thing, my love snores like a Yamaha, going uphill in second gear and coming down again. It’s not his fault, mind you, over which he has any personal control. He simply breathes loudly when he’s deep in sleep.

I could, I found, sleep through a thunderstorm and not hear a crack all night, providing I once slipped into a cozy, peaceful mind and then drift off dreamily into a lovely landscape of the lazy fifth dimension of rest that my memory can call upon, whenever I choose to summon the scenes I’ve once found serene…

I tried to rest on those thoughts and images that gave my mind tranquility. I would recall all of the pleasant places I had ever visited, to which I wished again to return. I would find again in my memory chambers, every corner of my world that made me feel relaxed and then relish in revisiting these mentally.

I would walk the beaches around Saginaw Bay. It would be late August, again, on the movie screen of my mind. The lake was lapping at the beach where I walked through the soft, summer warm sand.

In August, the lake never ‘rushed’ in to meet the shore. It would wash in, and just as easily slip back again like sheets of silk, blue and gray with sprays of white foam writing each tumbling wave.

There was an instrumental rhythm, like crushing pieces of tissue paper in the music of the water as it caressed the sand and returned to itself like slippery, shining satin and bolts of silk, pulled smoothly over a pillowed featherbed, on which the wooded bluffs rested.

These were those pathways of peaceful places where I had been before and wish to return without having to pay rent or make improvements on property I couldn’t afford! I could see the beaches line with the birch trees and long needle pines.

I listened and I heard in my memory’s echo chambers, the soothing swishing of the waves on the peaceful shoreline of the quiet Bay. The water was winking impudently in the sunlight while the wind bulldozed the small dunes and, off in the distance, a lighthouse wore a halo of seagulls.

I was there once again in my memory album of restful visits. This must be ‘the house built without hands’ that John Ruskin wrote about. Listen! I can hear the water on the beach again. I can see the gulls, gliding to make an occasional swoop at the lake for a fish they’ve spied.

The air smells of the water, clean, wet and cool. Look! Down the road from the beach! The poplars and the maples are golden green, like new corn when it’s just ready for picking. Their branches barely stir because the breezes are subtle and seldom.

The late afternoon sun begins to slip right into a lovely blue horizon, where only occasional puffs of soft, innocent clouds move lazily across the Michigan sky. The scene can change, as I will it to, according to what records my memory has made of such visits there.

I can choose to see the gulls glide into the foam-capped waves, or the clouds moving carelessly across the blue August sky and the sun in mid-afternoon, golden, brilliant and later slipping, a little now, a little then, into a Western hillside horizon as the day descends into evening time.

To be there again, as we were that pleasant summer day, gives me reason to rest, putting me softly into the mood that invites peaceful rest. I can nestle down into the pillows and draw the thick down comforter up around my shoulders and chin and close my eyes.

I hear the fog horns of the ships further out on the lake, and the picture fades while I slip dreamily off into a much-needed sleep. I rest well with these soft thoughts, recalling my most loved memories of a favorite place…


In addition, September is also known as National Americana Month. Americana is a nostalgic culture of an idealized, patriotic, small town, Norman Rockwell lifestyle. According to, Americana encompasses not only material objects but also people, places, concepts and historical eras…”

Norman Rockwell depicted the simple, small-town, middle-class lifestyle of Americans as humble, God-fearing people who enjoyed a strong and prosperous family life – with Americana-styled elements like community pride and patriotism, Coca-Cola memorabilia, blue-collar workers, white-picket fences, denim, baseball, football, chocolate brownies and apple pie.


In honor of August, still being National Brownies at Brunch Month, here’s Mom’s copycat recipe for Aunt Jenny’s Brownies; as seen in her self-published cookbook, The Original 200 Plus Secret Recipes© Book (Secret RecipesTM, Marysville, MI; June 1997, p. 4).


P.S. Food-for-thought until we meet again, next Monday…


The month of August observes, among other things… National Dog Month, Family Fun Month, Get Ready For Kindergarten Month, Happiness Happens Month, International Peace Month, National Back to School Month, National Catfish Month, National Goat Cheese Month, National Golf Month, National Panini Month, National Sandwich Month, and Romance Awareness Month!

Today is also… National Thoughtful Day, National Red Wine Day, and National Cherry Turnovers Day!

Tomorrow is… National Chop Suey Day and National Lemon Juice Day!

Wednesday, August 30th, is… National Toasted Marshmallow Day and National Beach Day!

Thursday, August 31st, is… National South Carolina Day and National Trail Mix Day!

Friday, September 1st, is… National Chicken Boy’s Day and National No Rhyme (Nor Reason) Day! Plus, as the first Friday in September (for 2023) it’s also… National Lazy Mom’s Day, National Food Bank Day, National College Colors Day, and National Chianti Day!

September 2nd is… National Blueberry Popsicle Day! Plus, as the first Saturday in September (for 2023), it’s also… National Tailgating Day! Additionally, the first Saturday of EVERY MONTH is also… National Play Outside Day! According to, the first Saturday in September is unofficially International Bacon Day! [NOTE: National Bacon Day is December 30th.]

Sunday, September 3rd, is… National Welsh Rarebit Day and U.S. Bowling League Day! Plus, as the start of the first FULL week in September (for 2023) it’s also… National Waffle Week!



…35 down and 17 to go!

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Happiness Happens With Family Fun

Thank God Its Monday again and, as such, Happy Monday to one and all! I really look forward to Mondays because they’re my 52 Chances a year, in which I get to share Memories of My Mom with you!




Hand-in-hand with Happiness Happens Month, August is also Family Fun Month – because, obviously, happiness happens when you’re having family fun. August is the most popular month for so many enjoyable summer events. as well as going on one last vacation before the kids go back to school.

Some of my happiest childhood memories are of the fun, summer activities we did as a family like fishing, swimming and boating; plus, our family vacations to Cedar Point (Sandusky, OH), Sea World (Aurora, OH), Tahquamenon Falls and Soo Locks (U.P. of MI), Niagara Falls (Ontario, Canada), Mackinaw City and Mackinac Island (MI).


Mackinac Island, Michigan is a very nostalgic place – the summer vacations that I spent there with my family, as I was growing up, are among my most memorable ones. Especially when we just happened to be staying at the Grand Hotel when the filming of “Somewhere in Time” was going on.

We had seen Christopher Reeves from a distance a couple of times, but we actually got to meet and talk to Christopher Plummer and Jane Seymour between scenes! I remember a couple of other family fun vacations, going to see some of our relatives who live in other states.

We had a family fun vacation visiting some of Dad’s side of the family in West Virginia, where there was a family fun reunion, as well. Another year, we went to see some relatives from Mom’s side of the family, in the Los Angeles area – and had additional family fun, visiting Universal Studios and Disneyland (Mom made a copycat version of their fudge, too).

I aspired to make happiness happen with family fun and wonderful summertime memories for my own children, when they were growing up. We often went camping, as well as to backyard barbeques, beaches, water parks, community carnivals, state fairs, art and car shows, outdoor movies and concerts, the zoo, and so on. Happiness happens with family fun!

One summer, we drove through Chicago on our way to Wisconsin, where we visited a friend of mine in Madison and another in Green Bay – seeing things we’d never seen before. Then we drove through Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to go home. Along the way, we stopped to visit Mackinaw City and Mackinac Island.

I loved sharing my summer childhood memories with my own kids, first hand, while creating family fun memories for them, as well. We also went to big amusement parks like Cedar Point (OH), Boblo Island (Ontario), and Kings Island (OH). One time, we drove through Niagara Falls (Ontario) and stopped for a day of sightseeing, on our way to “upstate” New York.


As seen in…

Gloria Pitzer’s National Home News (National Home News, St. Clair, MI; Vol. 5, No. 9; September 1978, p. 11)

AT HOME – A Back-To-School Barometer For Veteran Mom’s

SOME MOTHERS ARE GIFTED at retaining certain pieces of information that they can tell you in the second week of June the exact date, time and hour of the day in September when school opens again.

Others rely on newspaper headlines, the calendar, their neighbors, but the best of all barometer for deciding when it’s time for the kids to go back to school is a series of events in the lives of mothers who know that the family that plays together gets on each other’s nerves… After a while!

You know it’s time for the kids to go back to school when you’re 13-year-old passes up a phone call from a boy to voluntarily wash the dishes because she’s bored. You know it’s time for the kids to get back to school, when the sound of a child licking a postage stamp gives his mother in the next room a tension headache.

When the city declares your backyard a dangerous intersection because of excessive mini-bike traffic through your flowerbeds, you know it’s time for the kids to go back to school. When you’re 16-year-old prefers to take out the garbage to lifting weights because he doesn’t have anything else to do, the vacation has out-lived its original purpose.

You know it’s time for the kids to go back to school when your own mother calls to apologize for not having had the children at her house for a few days but mentions something about Christmas vacation being just around the corner.

You know it’s time when the words to a record album your teenager has been playing all summer begin to make sense to you. It’s time for the kids to go back to school when you read in the paper that the teachers in your area still haven’t settled their contract with the school board.

You know it’s time when even the neighborhood kids start to call you ‘Mother’ and you discover you like it. It’s time when you find six of them even walking AROUND your newly planted bushes rather than THROUGH them.

Most mothers can tell when it’s time for the kids to go back to school when they see Christmas merchandise being marked down on the counters of their favorite store and all the Halloween favors have already been sold, and it isn’t even Labor Day yet!

Mothers can tell when it’s time by the number of Kool-Aid stains on the living room rug that begin to take on the interesting arrangement of a free-form art exhibit.

You know it’s time for the schools to open when the 15-year-old, who wouldn’t wear shoes all summer, suddenly takes an advance on his allowance to get himself six peers of socks and a haircut without being told to.

It’s time when a mother has made so much lemonade and spread so much mustard on sandwiches, that she can’t see the color yellow without feeling sexually attracted to a school bus! It’s time for the kids to return to their little red schoolhouse and their little reading books when they start leaving the house WITHOUT slamming the screen door!

You know the time is right if you have a high school senior, who for three years enjoyed every chance he had to get OUT of school but develops a sudden nervous rash when he hears school might not open if the teachers strike. In fact, show me a mother right now who isn’t glad to see the kids go back to school and I’ll show you a TEACHER!

Even after Mom and Dad became “empty nesters”, they continued to make happiness happen with their own version of family fun getaways (as families can be only two people). Mom loved to write about these trips and share her stories with her family of readers. Joining the Good Sam [RV] Club was among their happiest experiences.

It was a great source of wonderful friendships and memories for both of them. Mom kept scrap books of photos and special keepsakes from their many fun trips with Good Sam’s Michigan and Ohio chapters. They especially looked forward to Good Sam’s big “Samboree” events!

Sometimes Mom would give lectures at these events, regarding her copycat and short-cut cookery concepts, such as those published in her Mostly 4-Ingredients cookbook. She often wrote about her and Dad’s fun trips in her newsletters – from the new restaurant dishes they tried to the beautiful sights they saw and to all the great people they met.


As seen in…

My Cup Runneth Over and I Can’t Find My Mop (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Dec. 1989, p. 100)


FRIENDS ARE A TREASURE and, when we count our blessings, we count our friends twice! It’s not possible to have a full and happy life without others to share with, to help when help is needed, to be helped when help is offered…

Since our camping experiences with the national RV organization, Good Sam, we have truly adopted their slogan… ‘In Good Sam there are no strangers – only friends you haven’t met yet!’ How very true.

What would we have done had we not been blessed with meeting Irv and Helen Henze [or] Helen and Chuck Mogg? How much we miss Chuck since he passed away. Friends are those people who know everything there is to know about you, but like you anyhow!

NEEDLESS TO SAY, I can’t wait until we can begin our ‘motor-home camping’ again with our Good Sam friends. It’s our weekend vacation pleasure, May through October. Becoming part of the Good Sam organization is the best thing that has ever happened to us, where we could both enjoy mutual friendships and activities. Wonderful, caring people, who constantly remind us that ‘there are no strangers in Good Sam – only friends we haven’t met, yet!’ – Gloria Pitzer [As seen in… “GOOD SAM – CARING AND CAMPING”, from Gloria Pitzer’s Secret RecipesTM Newsletter (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; May-June 1987, 126th issue, p. 3)]

TO THE GOOD SAM RV CLUB (MI & OH Branches): Thank you for giving me the opportunity to meet with and talk to people from all over the country, relative to their recipe interests and food needs… Since our camping experiences with… Good Sam, [Paul and I] have truly adopted their slogan, ‘In Good Sam, there are no strangers – only friends we haven’t met yet!’ – Gloria Pitzer (1989)


Memories are made, families have fun (even when there’s only two of you), and happiness definitely happens in August! But we’re getting closer and closer to the Labor Day Weekend, which is the unofficial end of summer – just as Memorial Weekend is the unofficial start. Merchants are already gearing up for the fall and winter holidays.

Stores are loading their shelves and racks with candy and decorations for Halloween and the fall harvest season. Are you ready for fall and Halloween, yet? That’s okay… Neither am I. Let’s continue enjoying August’s Family Fun Month a little longer. We still have a couple weeks before Labor Day arrives!


Once again, in honor of August, being National Sandwich Month, here are TWO of Mom’s copycat recipes for Beef Feeder [aka: Sign of the Beefcarver] Style Beef Roast & Rye Rolls; from her self-published cookbook, Eating Out at Home (National Home News, St. Clair, MI; September 1978, p. 22).



P.S. Food-for-thought until we meet again, next Monday…


The month of August observes, among other things… National Dog Month, Get Ready For Kindergarten MonthInternational Peace Month, National Back to School Month, National Brownies at Brunch Month, National Catfish Month, National Goat Cheese Month, National Golf Month, National Panini Month, and Romance Awareness Month!

Today is also… National Spumoni Day and National Senior Citizens Day!

Tomorrow is… National Be An Angel Day, National Bao Day, Never Bean Better Day, and National Pecan Torte Day!

Wednesday, August 23rd, is… National Ride The Wind Day, National Sponge Cake Day, and National Cuban Sandwich Day!

Thursday, August 24th, is… National Maryland Day, National Peach Pie Day, and National Waffle Day!

Friday, August 25th, is… National Park Service Founders Day, National Whiskey Sour Day, National Kiss and Make Up Day, National Secondhand Wardrobe Day, and National Banana Split Day! Plus, it’s the start of… Be Kind to Humankind Week (always the 25th to 31st)!

Saturday, August 26th, is… National Dog Day, National Women’s Equality Day, and National Cherry Popsicle Day!

Sunday, August 27th, is… National Pots De Creme Day and National Just Because Day!


…34 down and 18 to go!



By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… Gloria Pitzer’s Cookbook – Best Of The Recipe Detective (Balboa Press; Jan. 2018, p. 188). [A revised reprint of Gloria Pitzer’s Better Cookery Cookbook (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; May 1983, 3rd Edition).]

The Denver Sandwich was a lunch-hour specialty at the Woolworth’s dime store [diner] on Woodward Avenue in downtown Detroit back in the day of saddle shoes and bobby socks, the Kern’s clock and streetcars that took you as far as the state fairgrounds – even up to 6 Mile and Palmer Park.

How the Denver Sandwich came to be a Detroit favorite, I will never know for certain, except that you can overdose on these and develop a strange side-effect that causes you to walk bow-legged, as if you’re nursing a saddle sore!


3 eggs

3 TB milk

2 TB each: chopped onion and diced green pepper

a dash each: season salt and black pepper

3 TB butter

2 slices buttered toast

1 slice Swiss cheese


In a small bowl, beat eggs with milk until frothy. Add chopped onion and diced green pepper – plus season salt and black pepper. Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Pour egg mixture in skillet, stirring it until it is slightly scrambled, and turning it only one time, and briefly at that, to keep the center soft. Slip it out of the pan and onto buttered toast. Add cheese and the top slice of buttered toast. Cut it into 4 triangles and serve it piping hot! [Makes 1 sandwich.]


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Happiness And Radio

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Happiness And Radio

Thank God Its Monday, thus, #HappyMonday to all! I look forward to every Monday, as they’re my 52 Chances a year, in which I get to share Memories of My Mom with you!




Next Sunday is National Radio Day and, for Mom, happiness happened whenever she was on the radio, talking about her copycat recipes! I’ve written several blog posts about Mom’s harmonious relationship with radio because radio filled her life with so much joy!

“The Recipe Detective” was the name given to her, in the mid-1970s, by a local radio audience because she investigated the secrets of the food industry, coming up with workable recipes for imitating their signature dishes and grocery products.

Mom always said that – of all the TV shows she was on and all of the newspaper and magazine interviews and stories about the Secret Recipes DetectiveTM, since her fast food recipes business began – she honestly preferred radio over all the others.

For the first three decades that Mom and Dad were in business, full time (1974-2004), not a day went by without a generous amount of mail or phone calls, expressing an enthusiastic interest in the recipes they developed and published, as a kitchen table enterprise. A couple years in the middle were overwhelming!

Under Dad’s talented direction and full-time management, they went from a hand-operated mimeograph machine, in our laundry room, to a full-fledged office – staff and all – then back, again, to the simplicity of a home office and a two-person (for the most part) operation.

Mom’s friend, Dick Syatt, at RKO-Radio in Boston, once told her, in regard to the tremendous response they received from her FIRST appearance on The Phil Donahue Show, in July 1981: ‘Hell is God giving you what you thought you wanted!’

They liked it better when it was simple – from the means by which they distributed and publicized their books and newsletter to the eventual exclusiveness of working with radio. They “had it all”, once – enough to know that’s not what they truly wanted.

Mom had been invited to do QVC and videos but, she learned, the filming of her recipes wasn’t as essential to their success, as production executives insisted. Mom proved that, too, when she lent her work to the Braille Institute and Books for the Blind – Talking Books. The way in which she described and presented her recipes made pictures redundant.

Radio felt like home to Mom. The audiences felt like close friends and the shows’ hosts felt like family. As a matter of fact, she had so many great things to say about her radio experiences – here are just some of those…

My Cup Runneth Over and I Can’t Find My Mop (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Dec. 1989, pp. 57-59)


ADVERTISING WITH BOB Allison’s ‘Ask Your Neighbor’ radio show, which we later came to do, brought us the kind of audience that made all of the work worthwhile. We had only developed one book at that time. The [ad] spots we bought on his show were quite expensive for our limited budget, but the results were so rewarding that we later even increased the number of spots we took.

At the same time, I was placing ads in ‘Grit’ magazine, ‘Family Weekly’ (based in Pennsylvania) and with all of the Tower Press magazines, advertising the 200 recipes on our 4 x 6 cards and the books. We began to grow and increase our subscriptions nicely, at a rate that we could comfortably handle.

The five kids were all still in school and living at home as this developed. Paul was working as a purchasing agent for the Willey Sign Company, where he had been for nearly 20 years. The time he was then giving me, to help me fill orders, was after he came home from his own job at the sign company.

He also devoted every weekend and his two-week vacation to helping me with the recipes. So I was not surprised when he decided he would have to give up the sign company job in order to devote full attention to our recipe business.

He could see that with a few hundred letters a day, six days a week, I could not handle it alone. The kids were pitching in after school, if only to stuff envelopes, lick postage stamps and assembled the newsletter; [then,] alphabetize the 4 x 6 cards after they had been mimeographed and allowed to dry on the dining room table.

It was quite a relief when we decided to take the 4 x 6 cards to our printer and let them lithograph them on the offset, instead of fooling around with the messy mimeograph, ourselves, any longer. This left me free to devote more time to developing new recipes that would imitate the franchise menu items, and there was a constant interest in such dishes from all over the country. Every day presented a new and exciting challenge!

Radio has become one of the biggest blessings in our work and my recipe visits came about as a result of my initial work with Bob Allison and his ‘Ask Your Neighbor’ show. Other broadcasts it became a tradition with us involved all of the stations listed here – and then some.

The contacts of most of these came as a result of the wire service carrying a story about our recipes from time to time, the biggest occurring after a write up in ‘Mother Jones Magazine’ in 1976 [when it first began]. Zodiac news service carried the story and from that we must have been contacted by 100 stations in less than a week.

Many of those have remained among our regular visits even today. Others have come to us from the publicity we have mailed out to several hundred stations that are listed in the national Radio Directory [found in many public library systems].

Putting together such publicity was a huge project and a 10% return of such contacts is gratifying. So, for that reason, many people back off from using direct-mailing publicity. The behind-the-scenes work, involved in making our contacts, entails days and days of putting one of these projects together. None of it ever just happened.

The favorite broadcasts that I have considered my home-away-from-home include KNX-Radio, in Los Angeles, where I first met Jackie Olden; and now, Mel Baldwin and Melinda Lee carry on the Food-News show [there]. You will note that I mentioned them frequently in our newsletters.

There was also my introduction to WHIO-Radio, in Dayton [Ohio], where Lou Emm first introduced me to his listeners – before Donahue, as that is where Phil originated his TV show years ago. The monthly visits that I now enjoy participating in are with Andy Thomas of WVOC-Radio, in Columbia [SC] and with Marty Kaye, on a weekly basis, at WIBA-Radio, in Madison, Wisconsin.

I was so sorry to see Ed and Sydney Busch retire from their ‘America Over the Weekend’ broadcasts, for I began broadcasting with them at WFAA-Radio, in Dallas, in 1976 or 1977 – and it was over that station that I met Colonel Sanders.

Many of the stations with which I have worked in the past 20-plus years have made me feel so much a part of their regular staff, and their family of listeners, that I have come to think of them as my home-away-from-home.

When I work with WHO-Radio, in Des Moines, and Jan Michaelson, it is like ‘family’; for I worked with Jan at a Cincinnati station for many years prior to his move to Iowa. I was made to feel right at home. The listeners also accepted me like ‘family’.

From other radio experiences, I have come to know and love the staff and the listening audiences of each of the stations, which include KSDO-Radio, in San Diego [and] WIBC-Radio, in Indianapolis with Jeff Pigeon; who, after talking to me for only five minutes, had so inspired his listeners to want to try our recipes that we received nearly 1000 letters within two days after the radio visit!

My other radio visits cover KLIF-Radio, in Dallas, with Kevin McCarthy; KSL-Radio, in Salt Lake City, with Bob Lee; and WJR-Radio, in Detroit, with Bob Hynes on late-night and Jack Mindy and daytime.

There is also a long and friendly relationship between Toni Harblin and her listeners and me at WTNY-Radio, in Watertown, New York; as well as, WBKV-Radio, in West Bend, Wisconsin and WKRC-Radio, in Cincinnati, with JB Miller. I first met JB when he was with a West Virginia radio station, perhaps 12 or 13 years ago.

KTAR-Radio, in Phoenix, is a long-time friendship that comes along during the holidays, when I visit with Preston Westmoreland or Pat McMahon. And there are regular visits with Mike Donavon at WSTV-Radio, in the Steubenville, Ohio area.

Kathy Keene, at WHBY-Radio, in Appleton, Wisconsin, has an enthusiastic following. There are so many others that I hope I haven’t forgotten to mention these wonderful friends and the story of how we have grown.

WSUB-Radio, in the New London, Connecticut area, is [where I visit] with my pal, Margie Kreschollek – The Micro Whiz – and is a new radio visit that I thoroughly enjoy. Margie takes my conventional recipes and converts them to micro cooking in no time at all!

Another outstanding experience I had recently was with Jim Warren and Prime Time America. Beth Albright and I hit it off like old friends on her show at WISN-Radio, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; where we had two hours with which to acquaint her listeners with my recipe secrets.

Tim Regler, of KLIN-Radio, in Lincoln Nebraska, and I found his family of listeners just like neighbors on our street – friendly and receptive. Another recent visit that has become a regular event with us is with WFIR-Radio, in Roanoke, Virginia.

Dennis Elliott, of WMFR-Radio, in High Point North Carolina, was another challenging broadcast that brought wonderful letters from his listeners. When Dan Leonard left WEBR-Radio, in Buffalo, I was honored to be one of his last guests. I’ll really miss him there.

But the second Tuesday of every month, if you are in the Oklahoma City listening area, please tune into KTOK-Radio in my regular visit with Carol Arnold and her audience. We promise to give you chocolate recipes if nothing else!



Once again, in honor of August, being National Sandwich Month, here’s Mom’s copycat recipe for a Denver Sandwich, Like Woolworth’s; as seen in… Gloria Pitzer’s Cookbook – The Best of the Recipe Detective (Balboa Press; Jan. 2018, p. 188). [A revision of Gloria Pitzer’s Better Cookery Cookbook (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; May 1983, 3rd Edition)].



P.S. Food-for-thought until we meet again, next Monday…


The month of August observes, among other things… National Dog Month, Family Fun Month, Get Ready For Kindergarten Month, International Peace Month, National Back to School Month, National Brownies at Brunch Month, National Catfish Month, National Goat Cheese Month, National Golf Month, National Panini Month, National Sandwich Month, and Romance Awareness Month!

Additionally, as the second week in August (14th-20th for 2023), it’s also… Elvis Week, which is always the week of August 16th!

Today is also… National Creamsicle Day!

Tomorrow is… National Relaxation Day and National Lemon Meringue Pie Day!

Wednesday, August 16th, is… National Tell a Joke Day, National Roller Coaster Day, and National Rum Day!

Thursday, August 17th, is… National Nonprofit Day, National Massachusetts Day, and National Thrift Shop Day!

Friday, August 18th, is… National Fajita Day, National Mail Order Catalog Day, National Ice Cream Pie Day, and National Pinot Noir Day!

August 19th is… International Bow Day, National Soft Ice Cream Day, and National Potato Day! Plus, as the third Saturday in August (for 2023), it’s also… World Honey Bee Day!

Sunday, August 20th, is… National Chocolate Pecan Pie Day!


…33 down and 19 to go!



By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… Gloria Pitzer’s Cookbook – Best Of The Recipe Detective (Balboa Press; Jan. 2018, p. 114). [A revised reprint of Gloria Pitzer’s Better Cookery Cookbook (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; May 1983, 3rd Edition).]


Archer Teacher Fish Batter (Below), using beer instead of club soda

½ cup Crisco

¼ cup margarine

Cheese sandwich (as prepared below)

2 slices buttered bread

Mayo and mustard, to taste

2-3 thin slices Monterey Jack cheese

1 slice Swiss cheese

2-3 thin slices tomato (optional)


Prepare one recipe of my Archer Teacher Fish Batter (see below) – but instead of the club soda, use beer. Melt Crisco oil and margarine in a 12-inch round skillet and get it hot without letting the margarine turn brown.

Prepare a cheese sandwich, buttering one side of each of the slices of bread; then applying mayonnaise and mustard, if you like, and slices of cheese, plus tomato slices – if you wish. Put the sandwich together securing it in 3 or 4 places with wooden toothpicks.

Dip it in the prepared beer batter on both sides to coat it evenly and lift it with a pancake turner into the hot oil mixture. Fry until golden brown and crispy on both sides. Replenish the oil and margarine as needed to maintain at least a 1-inch depth of melted oil mixture in the skillet. Serve it at once with a side of my shrimp cocktail or tartar sauce (see “Recipes” tab.) This is a favorite fast food of the Texas-Oklahoma area!

ARCHER TEACHER’S FISH BATTER (from p. 108 of same book)

[Combine as listed…]

1 teaspoon sweet basil powder

1/8 teaspoon each: oregano powder and sage powder

1 teaspoon pepper

½ teaspoon garlic salt

about 3 cups of boxed pancake mix

2 to 3 cups of bottled club soda [or beer]


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Happiness Happens



By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… Gloria Pitzer’s Cookbook – Best Of The Recipe Detective (Balboa Press; Jan. 2018, p.65). [A revised reprint of Gloria Pitzer’s Better Cookery Cookbook (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; May 1983, 3rd Edition).]


2 ripe avocados

4 teaspoons lime juice

1 large fresh tomato (seeded & chopped)

2 tablespoons dry minced onions

2 tablespoons finely-chopped fresh red onion

1 well-chopped (bottled) chili pepper with 1 tablespoon of the liquid in which it’s bottled

1 teaspoon powdered coriander


Peel avocados and remove their pits – reserve these. Place avocados in a bowl and mash to a chunky consistency; then, add the following [6 ingredients]. Beat it all together with an electric mixer on high-speed – or run the mixture through a blender – until pureed. Press the reserved pits into the mixture and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving. Remove the pits and discard when ready to serve. Makes 2 cups.


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – The Recipe Detective Website



By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… Gloria Pitzer’s Cookbook – Best Of The Recipe Detective (Balboa Press; Jan. 2018) [A revised reprint of Gloria Pitzer’s Better Cookery Cookbook (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; May 1983, 3rd Edition).]


1 cup milk

½ cup Nestlé’s quick chocolate drink powder

3 cups slightly soft vanilla ice cream


Put ingredients in blender, using on/off agitation and blending until smooth. Stop motor occasionally to scrape mixture away from blades and repeat blending until creamy. Makes one serving.


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Love And Kindness



By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… The Original 200 Plus Secret Recipes© Book (Secret RecipesTM, Marysville, MI; June 1997, p. 42)

THE SECRET IS SIMPLE. You brown and crumble the beef and then put half of it into your blender with only enough liquid to cover the blades. Blend it until it is the consistency of cement mortar. Jack McCarthy of Detroit’s Channel 7 (WXYZ-TV) confessed to me, once, was the real secret to good, authentic, Greek style coney sauce.

He had come to our house on Christmas Eve years ago to do a film about us. Apparently, Jack was a gourmet cook and loved good food! When he traveled, he would take a lot of kidding, about carrying with him, what most people would think is a tennis racket, when it was actually a crepe pan in a tennis racket cover.

Don’t be overwhelmed by the number of ingredients! It is one of those everything-in-one-kettle type of recipes that can’t go wrong.!


2½ to 3-lbs ground sirloin

2-tsp ground cumin

Few grains cayenne [pepper]

½ tsp black pepper

1 tsp crushed oregano leaves

3-TB beef bouillon powder

6-oz can tomato paste

3 cups hot, black, strong tea

1 envelope onion soup mix

1 TB chili powder

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp garlic salt

3-TB packed brown sugar

1 cup ketchup

6-oz V-8 Juice

½ tsp Kitchen Bouquet (optional)


In lightly greased Dutch oven, on top of stove, over medium-high heat, brown the sirloin until all pink color disappears, crumbling it with a fork until it looks like rice. Add to it all but the hot, black tea. Put the tea in your blender with half of the sirloin mixture and blend briefly, until smooth, returning it to the rest of the mixture in the kettle…

Allow to cook at a low simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring often. Then turn heat to lowest possible point and cover kettle with lid, letting it heat gently about an hour before serving. To serve – spoon mixture into split hamburger buns or over grilled hot dogs in buns…


Add to meat mixture [above] 3-lb can chili beans, in chili gravy, and heat gently to serve… in bowls. Serves 8 and it freezes beautifully, in smaller portions, to use in a few months.


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Take The Junk Out Of Junk Food



By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… The Original 200 Plus Secret Recipes© Book (Secret RecipesTM, Marysville, MI; June 1997, p. 15).


1-qt ice cream, any flavor, in 2” balls, hard frozen

2 cups finely rolled pound cake crumbs or cookie crumbs

2 eggs, well beaten and combined with 4 TB milk

(in small bowl for coating ice cream balls)

1 pint/8-oz oil for frying


…Using [only a] few [balls] at a time, from the freezer, roll balls in crumbs and then in egg [mixture], back quickly in crumbs and into freezer one more time. Heat oil to 320°F and deep fry coated balls a few at a time from the freezer in hot oil only a few seconds, until slightly golden. Return to freezer again to serve either at once or icy cold later on with hot fudge sauce over them.


Melt [together] 5-oz Pet Milk, 5-oz white Karo, and 14-oz box Milk Duds until smooth and hot; without letting it boil, cooking and stirring often – about 20 minutes, just below the boil.


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Tourist Town Treasure




By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… The Original 200 Plus Secret Recipes© Book (Secret RecipesTM, Marysville, MI; June 1997, p. 5)


2 cups crushed pineapple, drained [and saved]

¼ cup maraschino cherries, halved

2 TB pineapple juice

½ cup sugar

¼ tsp grated lemon peel

1/8 tsp salt

1 recipe pie crust four double 9-inch pie shell

2 or 3 TB butter


Combine all but last two ingredients. Prepare pie crust and roll out 1/8-inch thick. Cut into 5×5-inch squares. Place each in greased muffin well. Put 2 to 3 tablespoons pineapple mixture in center of each and dot with a bit of the butter. Draw 4 corners of each square up and pinch to seal.

For bars: Roll half of dough out to fit buttered, oblong, 13-inch pan. Spread on filling. Top with rest of dough, rolled out to fit snuggly over it. Wipe top of dough in a little additional butter and sprinkle with a bit of additional sugar.

Bake at 425°F for 20 to 25 minutes. Makes 16 muffin tarts or 24 bars. Dust, either, while warm with powdered sugar. Add chopped walnuts to garnish top if you wish. Keep refrigerated to use in a week.


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Workaholics