Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Veteran's Day

The day Rick qualified for Submarines aboard the Lee with Captain Butler.

The National Parks Service has a Veteran's Day gift to all Veterans and Gold Star families. And it's a good one. A FREE Lifetime pass to all our National Parks, this pass known as the America the Beautiful pass also waives lots of other public land fees. I teared up a little watching the video put out by the Park service, it is indeed a beautiful thing to honor our Vets this way. 

My heartfelt thanks go out to all that have served our Nation, it is a sacrifice that doesn't go unnoticed 
by my family. We love our Vets and our National Parks.
The fam hiking in Lassen National this year.

I married Rick Stewart in 1978 while he was serving in the United States Navy. We moved to Vallejo where he was stationed at Mare Island, then on to Pearl Harbor where our daughter was born. Three days after she was born Rick had to board the USS Robert E Lee and bid us goodbye for 3 months. This is in no way a huge sacrifice in Military terms but I gained an understanding of the service of our Nation coming before all else. Those that serve put our greater good first every. single. day. God bless em. 
Aboard the USS Robert E Lee, Rick and a very pregnant me :)

Today our town will have a parade at 11am. Ever wonder why Veteran's Day is celebrated on 11/11 with most festivities at 11 am? Here is the official word from the VA:

"World War I – known at the time as “The Great War” - officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, in the Palace of Versailles outside the town of Versailles, France. However, fighting ceased seven months earlier when an armistice, or temporary cessation of hostilities, between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. For that reason, November 11, 1918, is generally regarded as the end of the war to end all wars."

Thank you to all those Hometown Heroes that have served. God bless. Thank you to the National Park Service for recognizing them with this gift. 

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Lassen, Plumas National Forest reforestation!

Rick in PNF

My husband always says "the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago, the second best is now", he probably didn't say it first but that's where I heard it so he gets the credit. The Monticola Club is looking to plant a whole LOTTA trees, acres of trees in Plumas and Lassen National Forest. Each acre will only require a $68 donation. Crazy right? Monticola is collecting donations for a local Penny Pines project, here's a brief description of Penny Pines from the USDA website:

" the plan is this. Under a Conservation Agreement, you or your organization contributes $68 toward the cost of planting seedlings on about one acre of National Forest land in California. Using your donation together with Federal funds, the Forest Service will do the planting on the National Forest nearest you or the forest of your choice." 

Hog Flat LNF

Penny Pines was started by a women's sportsman club in 1941, back then $68 bought 10 acres of trees with the seedlings costing about 10¢ each. And I thought $68 was a bargain.  I read on a National Geographic page that cones are taken from each national forest to harvest the seed, good seeds are put in cold storage until an order comes in, they are sown about a year before being moved by a refrigerated truck to the plantation area. The same article had this:
"Placerville Nursery cold storage room is the only Forest Service seed bank in the state and holds 70,000 pounds of seeds representing every national forest in California."

That's right, Placerville! Who knew. 

Our LoCaL Monticola does so much for the community from pool beautification to scholarships, there's even a book documenting their history in Susanville.  We'd like to thank Monticola for all they do!

Susanville Super currently has jars on the check stands if you'd like to be a part of this wonderful reforestation project. 

Monday, September 28, 2020

Bakery Manager Kailie

Please join me in congratulating Kailie on her promotion to Susanville Supermarket Bakery Manager!

Kailie was hired back in 2007 as a deli counter clerk, at 17 she wasn't even old enough to use the slicer. She was an antsy one. Just to keep her busy enough her manager would schedule her for bakery AND deli. One night Kailie saw the donuts being made from scratch and wanted to learn that also. Our cake decorator chose Kailie to train as a back up decorator, as many of you know, Kailie's cakes are incredible! If she sees it in a magazine (they still have those)  or on Pinterest she can do it. 

Lots of changes going on over there;  Dakota, such an artist when it comes to making the Best Donuts on the Planet, is training a back up for himself so he can spend more time baking. Cortney, formerly a sous chef, is now making scones and breads and anything else we need. Hannah is showing her talents in decorating daily, giving Kailie a little more time to focus on all those new items you see on our table plus instead of only baking at night we now are baking FrEsH all day long! 

We are so Hometown Proud to have another long term team member work their way up to management!

Congratulations Kailie! 

Friday, August 7, 2020

Constantia. Mom. Bacon. Trust me it will all make sense.

Photo credit Tim Purdy's Blog

If you follow local historian Tim Purdy you know Lassen County used to move a whole lotta buildings. Homes, churches, barns, businesses have been relocated.. I was surprised to learn in Tim's recent blog that the adorable little chapel in Doyle was moved there in 1904. It had previously been in Constantia since being built in 1898 ish. How the heck do you move an entire building? No idea. BUT I do know that the previous generations really understood reduce, reuse, recycle. Nothing that could be used went to waste. We used to roll our eyes at our parents and grands using the cottage cheese container instead of perfectly matched tupperware that was in the cupboard. Now my husband and I discuss, actually discuss, how we might 
use the empty container. It happens.

I promise you this will all come together in the end.... I can absolutely say, without fear of contradiction, my Mom made the best Potatoes O'brien EVER. I have spent years trying to replicate the perfectly caramelized onions and peppers, the tender yet golden crispness of the potatoes. Mom used cast iron, got the oil hot then would salt and pepper the bottom of the pan (liberally) before adding her ingredients. I did ALL that. So what's the problem? Ihave even pre baked the potatoes so they just needed to be diced and browned. Still... not as good as Mom's.  Until now. 

Yukons OBrien

One Saturday morning I filled a sheet pan with bacon to cook in the oven, it's a super clean way to cook it. I like to cook a full pan, that way after breakfast the rest goes in the fridge to crumble over salads, make BLTs and such. Then it came to me! That old coffee can that was always on the counter, filled with her personally curated blend of bacon grease. Like I said nothing went to waste.  THIS was the secret. I did a little google search so I could create my own amber deliciousness. I poured the oil from my bacon through a sieve right into a canning jar and popped it in the fridge. Momma would be proud. It has been used to sear everything from eggs to halibut (that halibut was heavenly). A tablespoon of bacon drippings is like a 1/4 cup oil, no idea why, plus it adds a smoky/saltiness that you can't get any other way. I highly recommend ALWAYS having it on hand. Just. Like. Mom. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. NOTHING went to waste!

Oh bacon, how I love thee.
See I told you it would come together :) 

THE SECRET. That wasn't so secret.

Thanks to Tim Purdy for all the Hometown History. Thanks to all those Moms out there for all the good food~

Wednesday, July 1, 2020


I remember like it was yesterday. 20 years ago this adorable girl in her cute little glasses walked into the front office, was interviewed by Rick and hired on the spot. Little did we know. She has brought so much fun and enthusiasm and friendship to our lives. Crohns walks, Cancer walks, Search and Rescue, Bunco, IGA girls dinners, Patti shows up. You can count on her. Plus you never know what she'll do next!

A few of my favorite 'Patti moments' have been posted on our social media:
  • I just walked out of my office to see Patti telling the customer in front of her "Just remember, I've got a jar of pickles in my hand and I'm not afraid to use them".
  • It makes me nervous when I hear Patti in Express say things like "I can't get my leg up there". 
  • Todd told her to "take 10" once, she misunderstood and dropped to give him 10 push ups!
Thank you Patti for 20 years of bringing the Hometown Proud to Susanville Super <3

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Curried Chicken Salad

Boost your immune system! Reduce inflammation! Fight cancer! Reduce your heart disease risk! Battle Alzheimers! Plus ease digestion, lower cholesterol annnnnd kick up your metabolism!  It sounds like I'm pedaling snake oil here but these are some of the health benefits (claims) of curry. Even if only a wee bit of it's true I'll take it cuz the stuff is delicious.
I figure I can add to those claims by eating it outside where my outlook is better, mood elevated and I'm absorbing a bit of vitamin D from the sun. So yeah. Heathful and yummy. Curried Chicken Salad is pretty versatile too. Excellent in a wrap or on crackers but especially good on the Cheesecake Factory Brown bread we carry in the bread aisle. SOOOOOO good. 

2 12.5 oz cans chicken, drained
1/2 cup golden raisins 
1/3 cup diced onion
1/3 cup chopped cashews
5 or 6 oz plain Greek yogurt 
1/4 cup chutney 
2 tbs mayonnaise
1tsp curry powder

Mix well and enjoy!

Great traveling food, whether your headed to the chair on the porch or much much further. 

I encourage you to pack up a pic-a-nic basket and head out to discover and enjoy all that Lassen County has to offer. Check out one of the lookouts or petroglyphs, desert, mountains, lakes, we got it all. 

The photos are from the foundation of Dow Butte Lookout, described by many as 'Million Dollar' views, I think that is a huge understatement. The structure itself was moved to  Eagle Lake Marina for display in like '94. To see the foundation you're gonna need to navigate the backwoods. That just happens to be one of my favorite pastimes. 

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

High School Graduation 2020

My grand daughter is graduating from High School this year.  I know many kids are, we even have several working in the store. Whether they are the kids that would showboat across the stage or the ones with sweaty palms and a fear of tripping, I'm sorry they won't get to walk. Celebrations will likely have fewer people but that doesn't mean the accomplishment will go unnoticed. One of our team members received a special commendation on the recommendation of a customer and it was worded so beautifully;

"You were born when the world was grieving 9/11 and you are graduating as the world grieves a pandemic, although your two biggest launches into freedom have taken place in the midst of tragedy just know that the world is an amazing place and it is waiting for you with open arms. We grieve with you that your senior year is ending this way but we can't wait to see how you overcome and soar. YOU WERE MADE FOR THIS!" 

Indeed. You got this. This is the culmination of years of hard work, commitment and challenges met, both social and academic. Let me take this time to focus just on YOU. You deserve that. We are all so very Hometown Proud  and though we will miss seeing you walk I promise to keep you in my thoughts and prayers as you embark on the next stage of your life. 

To the graduating Class of 2020, Thanks for making us Hometown Proud, God Bless. 

Friday, May 22, 2020


Ken Loflin pictured with his draft orders
"I got lucky I guess. Somebody was looking out for me." Kenny Loflin. 

On May 9th 1968 Eagle Thrifty opened a brand new store in the building that is today Susanville Supermarket. 19 year old Ken Loflin was one of the first employees and would only work for a week before being drafted into the US Army. After completing Basic Training in Fort Lewis Washington and Artillery School in Fort Sill Oklahoma, Ken volunteered for Vietnam. The Army had other plans. Ken was a pole vaulter for the United States Army (he says this with a smile), that's what he means when he says "someone was looking out". Absolutely. Ken had been an athlete in High School so the Army had him pole vaulting and playing fast pitch softball competitively all up and down the East Coast. Ken did indeed get lucky. And so did we. 

Ken returned to Susanville 2 years later and with only a couple of interruptions has worked at this store ever since. That is 52 years of service to his community. He retired many years ago but still works in the store a couple days a week. We are fortunate to have Ken and several of our retirees still working in the store one or two days a week. Ken Loflin, Tom Berger and Debbie Oschner bring so much experience and knowledge to the table, we definitely got lucky too. 

Thank you to Ken for your service to our Country! Thank you to all our still working retirees for your continued service to our community! 

Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend everyone. God bless. 

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Mother's Day

I received the nicest gift from customer Beverly Clark. A signed copy of Joe Carcione's book, The Greengrocer. I grew up watching him on the evening news and was inspired to call my blog The Green Grocerette from that experience. This gift really touched my heart and brought back fond memories. Thank you so much Beverly!

As a tribute to Mr Carcione I'll give you a little grocery report. Then, cuz I like to, I'll throw in a recipe~

Berries~ BAM! They are outstanding right now, all of them. Fresh from the fields all varieties are holding up well in my fridge at home. Strawberries are on ad 2/$3 this week. Win. Win. Our Bakery will be whipping up some of their light as a feather Angel Food cake, pair that with berries and you're sure to be Mom's favorite!

Corn. Whoda thought it would be so sweet and juice this early? It is. And the pieces I've had didn't have a trace of starchiness. I add a smidge of sugar to the boiling water, someone told me once if you salt the water the corn can get tough. Boil for just a couple minutes then let set with the lid on while I get everything else ready. I like it crisp.

Baby Back Ribs! What more do I need to say, right? I have finally perfected my technique. First I sprinkle Spade-L seasoning for Pork on both sides, grill at about 425* on indirect heat. Start bone side down, turn after 35 minutes. Grill another 20. Slather bone side with sauce (I like KC Masterpiece), flip and slather meaty side, cook 9 minutes, slather that side again, cook 9 more minutes. Now they should be good and gooey. NOMMMMMM. Rick said he has traveled all over the States looking for the best bbq ribs and FINALLY had them right here at home. *Caution. You're gonna need to wash up and brush your teeth after, that's how you know it's goooooooood. 

Have a wonderful Mother's Day everyone. God bless all those Mommas out there. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Normal stuff

"Sometimes, when you don't feel normal, doing a normal thing makes you feel normal."~ George Burns, Oh God 1997. SUCH a great movie. Highly recommend for just a little escapism fun. This quote seems like sound advice right now so I'm gonna write about what I know and love, FOOD. Not just any food but my specialty, comfort food. 

I learned to cook in the 70s and still have a fondness for those one dish casseroles but without the heavy sauces, too much cheese (it can be a thing) and now I add a ton of bright fresh veggies. Chicken Pilau is an old southern favorite, chicken thighs, collards (don't be afraid), carrots, celery, onions and Aidells Mango Jalapeño sausage simmered with basmati rice.... so comforting and flavorful! If you use basmati the rice won't get sticky, just fluffy. 
Chicken Pilau
2 tbs olive oil 
1 1/2 lbs skinless boneless chicken thighs cut in chunks
6 oz smoked sausage, I like Aidells Spicy Mango Jalapeño, diced
1 cup diced onion
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped carrot 
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups chopped collard greens
3 cups chicken broth
2 cups uncooked basmati rice
red pepper flakes

Salt and pepper chicken cubes, saute in hot olive oil until done. Add sausage, onion, celery, carrot and garlic. Cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes. Stir in broth, rice and collard greens, bring to a boil. Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste. Remove from heat and cover, bake in 350* oven for 25 minutes. 

This makes plenty to share. I'm sure someone you know could use a little comfort too~

Maybe doing the normal everyday things is just what we need. 

Stay well. Stay kind. Stay Hometown Proud. ❤️

Featured Post

Veteran's Day

The day Rick qualified for Submarines aboard the Lee with Captain Butler. The National Parks Service has a Veteran's Day gift to all Vet...