Archives for December 2016

(Jean’s) Venison Chow Mein

Once upon a time my Christmas’s were comprised of a long drive to a small town, and a weekend gathering with my “in-laws”. It was a wonderful tradition that started with Jean’s famous Christmas Eve Chow Mein dinner. She made the best Chow Mein. I never asked her for her recipe, but I spent years trying to replicate the amazing taste I recalled from those special years. It broke my heart to learn she had passed.  Although her son and I were avid bowhunters with venison galore, I know that’s not what she used. This Christmas Eve, I dedicate to fond memories of Jean and my best try at her amazing Chow Mein—just a little bit on the wild side.

1 lb Ground Venison

4T Soy Sauce

4T Dry Sherry

4 stalks celery sliced at a 1/4“ diagonal

2 onions, chopped

8 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced thin

1 green pepper, chopped

1 8 oz package fresh bean sprouts


1 C Beef Broth

2 T Corn Starch

3 T Oyster Sauce

3 T Beef Bouillon

2 C uncooked white rice

  • Combine soy and sherry in a cup and divide.
  • Place half the mixture in a glass bowl, add the ground venison, 1 T of EVOO, and mix well. Cover and let stand at least 1 hour.
  • Prepare the rice in the rice cooker.*
  • Chop up all the veggies as needed.
  • Heat 2T EVOO and stir fry onions 1 minute in a large fry pan or wok. Add in the celery, green pepper, mushrooms and sprouts and stir fry until the veggies begin to soften—about 2 minutes, then remove from the pan.
  • Blend the broth, oyster sauce, bouillon, remaining soy and sherry, and cornstarch in a 4 cup glass measure and stir until the cornstarch is lump free.
  • Brown the burger in 2T EVOO (about 5 minutes should do it).
  • Turn the heat up to medium.
  • Stir in the liquid mixture, cover and simmer about 15 minutes until it becomes a thick gravy.
  • Uncover, add the veggies back into the pan, and cook on low, stirring occasionally, until everything is heated through and tender.  

Serve with hot rice, Chow Mein Noodles and Soy Sauce. Makes enough for 6 – 8 people. Merry Christmas!

*if you don’t have a rice cooker, place the rice into a 3 quart saucepan or soup pot. Add 4 cups water, 1T EVOO, and 1t salt. Cook over high heat until it is brought to boil, then cover pot and simmer about 25 minutes (check after 15). Let the rice stand for about 5 minutes before fluffing and serving.


Thank you for reading my post. Does this recipe sound yummy? If you try it out let me know what you think! All comments are greatly appreciated. Check out more great recipes under my Killer Cookin’ blog category, and if you like what you see, please let me know by “liking” my website. You can even join my tribe to automatically receive new postings ‘hot off the press’. There’s a place to do that right on my home page. As always, please feel free to share my information with others who may find interest and value in PR Brady AdVentures! Thanks again!



Creepy Crawley Christmas


This past autumn has been so very hard. Missing Jack. Unable to go hunting. Watching the leaves turn from my back yard instead of from endless woods full of birds and bucks.

My hunting season has been reduced to closing my eyes and remembering past experiences. Just not the same thing.  Temperatures hovered at unusual highs in early November, offering me many opportunities to escape to a warmer, friendlier place.

But I couldn’t leave. Health problems were stubbornly hanging onto me in defiance. I couldn’t drive.  I couldn’t go.

I had to accept the harsh reality that I’m likely not going anywhere warm any time soon. Life is changing for me, indeed. And ohhh, to have to face a Minnesota winter.

It’s been so long!

Winter without palm trees and beaches and warm sunny skies.

What is there left to do but make the best of it?

One morning, with great reluctance I finally stepped into the cold wintery outside and made my way to the side of the trailer, unlocking the door. My Toy Hauler was dark, creaking and freezing inside, so I quickly jumped in, dug out my Christmas tree and decorations, and carried the whole works into my living room.

Yup, I’m setting up my tree.

With a heavy sigh I carefully transported several light boxes of delicate Christmas baubles to the front window area, then began pulling my dainty “toy hauler size” tree out of its box. It was cold and stiff.  It’s little artificial branches were hugging tight to the trunk, not very willing to open up into place.  I pulled and separated the 3 sections onto the floor, then fit the base sections into their slots so the tree would stand freely.  This brave little tree has not known cold.  It has traveled the country with me to warm weather destinations, standing proud amidst the palm trees and tropical plants in 60 and 70 degree temperatures, never complaining.  As I fit the middle to the base, then the top to the middle, I recalled the strange feeling of our first Christmas in Florida.

In a tent. On the east coast.

Yes, many precious memories with this tree. I began fussing with the flattened branches to open them up and breathe some life into my little tree. Finding the plugs for the lights, I spun the sections to line up plugs, then tested out the lights.  All working perfect!  I returned to opening up branches, looking into the clusters of squished boughs for any sign of wear or breakage.

‘My how this tree has toughed out the last few years. It still looks pretty good.’

Picking at the branches accidently bent over in transit, my attention was split between the tree, and wondering about dinner, when suddenly, about half way up the tree, right next to my left hand, appeared without warning………a….

SPIDER!                !

Instantly, with feet peddling a mile a minute, I was rocketing backwards. My reflexes automatically reached for something (the tree) to stop me (from falling) realizing I was too late (and hit the floor) landing hard and still scrambling to get some distance between me and that creature infested tree! I pushed myself away so fast that I took down a box of ornaments from the chair, causing shiny round orbs to roll all over the floor.  OH did I mention that I was pretty much screaming the whole way down?

That spider was mega huge.

I went from the desperate attempt to place distance between me and the tree, to frantically brushing myself off and shaking my head to release any other potential critters that were hiding out in those fake branches waiting to attack me, crawling away as best I could.

I made it to the other side of the room—without crushing any of the escaped ornaments. Out of breath and out of sorts, I stood up and did a little pacing in the dining room, trying to get my composure back.  I need to dispatch the spider.

Relax. Take a breath.

I grabbed the broom and cautiously approached the tree, peering into its branches from a safe distance. Didn’t see anything moving anywhere.  Thinking maybe it’s on the underside of the tree, I tried erecting the tree back up with help from the broomstick—causing the base pieces to fall out of place.

‘OH no, I have to get under the tree and fix the stand!’

I tipped the tree to lean into the window, fixed the base pieces, and the tree fell into it’s proper place again. I peered intently into the tree—looking for signs of life.

ARAGHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THERE IT IS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I ran back to the dining room screaming.

You have to realize, this isn’t your every day run of the mill spider. No, this is a Florida spider—they can close up a walking path with a web in a matter of hours and catch unsuspecting birds and animals in it….some of them can carry a small child away…well maybe now I’m being a little melodramatic….but still!  That thing was huge!

I creped back over to the tree, just out of arms reach and peered again into the bristly branches. There it was. I stared, and stared, and stared at the hairy legged beast, waiting for it to make it’s move.  I rustled the tree with the broom just a little bit.

Hmmm, is that a broken leg?

Hmmm, is it missing a leg?

It’s just sitting there.

OH my God how many more are in my trailer.

Um….is it alive?

I shook the tree again, and it took its first lunge for me. It headed down the tree and hit the floor.

OH MY GOD IT’S ON THE FLOOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And I ran into the kitchen screaming.

By now, both of my dust mop dogs are highly curious about what’s happening. Sunny Girl is wandering closer and closer to the tree with a metal ornament stuck in her tail hair.  From across the room I cry out for her to get away as she gets right up close to the spider.  I have to rescue my little girl, so I dash in and scoop her up and away.

The spider didn’t move.

It’s just right there on the floor.

Beginning to think it’s actually not alive.

Beginning to feel a tad silly.

Ah yes, the rugged outdoorswoman.

Oh it’s times like these I’m glad there are no witnesses.

After a thorough inspection from a distance, I reach the conclusion that nope, the spider is not alive. I surveyed the mess I made trying to get away from the dead spider.  Wow.  I wonder how long that thing was able to stay alive in the box?  When did that thing get into the box?  I have more boxes…..oh dear.  I mustered up the courage to scoop that monstrous being onto a piece of newspaper, then placed him on a metal tin for “show and tell”.

Needless to say my tree decorating efforts came to a complete halt for the rest of the day. Finally got the tree trimmed that night, while keeping a sharp eye out for anything moving that shouldn’t be.  Have had several false alarms, thinking I saw something in the tree…or on the floor….and have had a couple dreams that I’d like to un-dream.  It’s one thing to have keepsakes of places you’ve been to that you’d like to remember.  It’s a whole different matter to have  fond memories of a Creepy Crawley Christmas!


Words from Wild PR Brady AdventuresThank you for reading my post. What are you most passionate about? What makes your soul sing? I’d love to hear about it!  All comments are greatly appreciated.  For me, it’s any time I can be immersed in nature! I love to ‘get wild, rugged, and dirty’, so to speak.  You can get up close and personal to the great outdoors through many of my observations and experiences in my blog category, “Words From The Wild”.  If you like what you see, please let me know by “liking” my website. You can even join my tribe to automatically receive new postings ‘hot off the press’.  As always, please feel free to share my information with others who may find meaning and value in the outdoors from this outdoorswoman’s perspective, and PR Brady AdVentures. Thanks again!

Merry Christmas To All

Facebook is quite a tool. It’s a great way to share news, and find out what’s going on with your friends and family instead of actually spending time with them.  It’s a great way to read between the lines and find out more about someone.  At times, there’s no need to read between the lines—some posts can be un-mistakenly clear.

Yes, Facebook sure can be a tool, and a weapon. A place to blast people that may or may not even know you, with criticism or judgement.  Once in a great while, I’ve put a big toe out there and chimed in on something personally important to me, only to have that toe snapped off by someone who disagrees—letting me know about it both barrels.

I’ve been holding out, and holding out, and trying to stay on that tightrope of not speaking out of turn so I can keep all my toes. Well, I guess today I felt like being offensive.  So here it is:





Ha! How’s that for being totally inappropriate and offensive?  Well, screw it, it’s Christmas and I’m celebrating a beautiful time of the year and don’t give a gnat’s ass who it offends!  You want somma this?  Come and get it.


I intend to stand tall and shout out:

“Merry Merry Merry Christmas to ALL!”


It is simply tragic that our country has allowed religion to be all about politics, judgement, suspicion, money, and who’s infringing on who’s rights. For the life of me I cannot understand or appreciate how our culture seems to be moving so very far away from allowing the expression of faith. NO matter WHAT a human believes, the origin of that belief stems from a human thought, communicated to another human.  Scripture can be interpreted in a good or bad light with any religion.  Yet, somehow the Christian faith is being called out on the chopping block.

Seriously… what? It’s not politically correct to say Merry Christmas anymore?

Tragic indeed. And, utter bullshit.

Intolerance of faith is simply intolerable.

Yup I’m here to say loud and proud———

Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas!

There was a time I practiced Existentialism. There was a time I practiced Buddhism, I studied Islam, embraced Judaism, Christianity, joined the ranks of Hinduism, Mysticism….my life journey has included walking many different paths, searching for a broader meaning in life, and believing in something greater than me.  Consequently it’s easy for me to appreciate that all faiths have merit—there’s room for them all.

At the same time, I keep in mind that the United States of America was founded on Christianity. The first settlers needed a blueprint to follow as a civilized society.  Giving thanks, showing respect, encouraging fellowship and stewardship.  What in the world is so dreadful with having just a smidgeon of that influence for a foundation? I disagree things need to be “changed” to represent the current times.  I am straight up grateful there’s still an outlet for the many, many people who still would otherwise have no blueprint, and am befuddled by those who would like to strip it away.  I am able to express my own faith without feeling somehow infringed upon by seeing signs of Christianity and the melting pot of other options out there– why can’t others?

Even though I am not a participant of organized religion, I support ‘Amen’. I support continuing the “In God We Trust” message.  I support allowing kids to recite the Pledge of Allegiance with hand over heart.  I support saying out loud “Merry Christmas!” and appreciating everything it stands for.  Why?  Because I am strong enough in my own beliefs to be gracious, understanding and aware of the need to offer a “starter story”.  Christianity has been a good story to believe in—and many people continue to need a story.  Without it, there may be no built in core belief system for countless lives, young and old, to turn to, to learn, develop and instill important building blocks that encourage healthy ethics, morals and values.  Christianity continues to be a worthy means to bring people together in unity.

At the end of the day, no religion, no spirit, no human, no anything is perfect. Not a one of us has the right to judge or define faith for all.  One of the great things about our country is that we do have a melting pot of religions and spirituality directions and the freedom of choice.  Personally, I feel like once you have a positive foundation, if one specific path doesn’t move you, there are always options.  We all have the ability to choose what we want to believe in as individuals, while still respecting others choices.

For me, the difference is that I firmly believe in the need for a basic core foundation to start with. Just take a look at the hundreds of people who reach out in their most desperate hour and enter into the MN Adult and Teen Challenge program. There’s no denying that embracing Christianity changes lives for the better.

If a person needs to believe in a God or Goddess or some supreme being in order to live right and do right, I’m all for it. If they can be a stellar person simply by believing in the importance of choosing good over bad, that’s great too.  If you find your path by meditating on a concrete statue of a fat belly bald guy, go for it.   If, like me, you find your faith in the middle of a quiet forest with nature, looking up at a grand pine tree, that’s simply fabulous.  If your God says Jesus is “just a guy”, well fantastic—maybe he was.  If your God tells you to cover your body in public, then wrap it up, baby!  If you are satisfied believing in “nothing” but free will, well, okay then.

But December is a very special time. It is Hanukkah, and the birthday of Jesus, the son of God.  It’s the time for Christians all around the world to celebrate belief in an amazing story of miracles, and hope.  A story that deserves to be shared openly, without apology, or fear of insulting someone.


Joy to the World,

Peace On Earth and

Merry Christmas to All!


Thank you for reading my post. Did it strike a chord for you or did it seem far and away from your own perspective?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!  All comments are greatly appreciated.  You can read about all sorts of ideas, opinions and feelings from the heart and soul of an outdoorswoman… there are lots of topics covered in my blog category, “Girl Outdoors”.  If you like what you see, please let me know by “liking” my website.  You can even join my tribe to automatically receive new postings ‘hot off the press’.  As always, please feel free to share my information with others who may find interest and value in PR Brady AdVentures!  Thanks again!