Black Wednesday for Zune 30 owners

I saw this on a friend’s Facebook account and since I have a Zune 30, I checked it out. Seems that sometime around midnight last night, all Zune 30 players froze and stopped working. Anyone currently in possession of a Zune 30 is in possession of a non-operable mp3 player at the moment. I turned mine on and, sure enough, like every other Zune 30 owner, it’s frozen on the loading screen. Good work, Microsoft.

On the Zune support page is this message:


Customers with 30gb Zune devices may experience issues when booting their Zune hardware. We’re aware of the problem and are working to correct it. Sorry for the inconvenience, and thanks for your patience!

Oops. Kind of an expensive piece of equipment to have a problem like this, no?

There’s an article here

And here

Hash Brown Quiche

This is the second recipe I made to use up some of the leftover ham. As it happened, I had half a bag of refrigerator hash browns leftover from this past weekend, so it was a double whammy of using up leftovers. Since I used refrigerated hash browns (Simply Potato hash browns) and not frozen ones, it was even easier (no thawing and squeezing out of excess water needed). I tried this both right when I made it and again reheated the next day, and it was good. Excellent dinner or breakfast option. Also, this would be super easy to adapt and add different veggies or meats to it. Ours had a small amount of crumbled bacon added in.

My only note would be that with the ham, bacon and cheese, it was salty enough on its own, I don’t think it would have needed the seasoning salt. I’ll skip that next time and use other spices. I did add chives in with my egg mixture, because I love chives, and I doubled the egg mixture as well (I’m sure there was more than a cup of ham thrown in there). I baked mine in an 8×8 glass casserole dish because my pie pan is currently in use for a pecan pie and like I said, it was great.

Hash Brown Quiche

* 3 cups shredded hash brown potatoes
* 1/3 cup butter, melted
* seasoning salt to taste
* 1 cup diced cooked ham
* 1/4 cup chopped onion
* 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
* 2 eggs
* 1/2 cup milk
* salt and pepper to taste


1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
2. Press hash browns onto the bottom and sides of a 9 inch pie dish. Drizzle with melted butter, and sprinkle with seasoning salt. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until beginning to brown.
3. In a small bowl, combine ham, onion and shredded cheese. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, salt, pepper, and a little seasoning salt. When crust is ready, spread ham mixture on the bottom, then cover with egg mixture.
4. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C.) Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until filling is puffed and golden brown.

You can bake this quiche, and refrigerate for up to 2 days in advance, then reheat in the microwave. It also freezes well.

Ham and potato soup

Every year, Josh’s work gives them either a ham or a turkey for the holiday season. “A” ham actually is two hams. Big-ass hams, like 8 to 10 pounds each. So it’s a lot of ham for three people. I made one this past weekend but…did I mention it’s a lot of ham for three people? Leftovers. I froze part of it with the bone, so I can make ham and beans at some point, but last night I made Ham and potato soup. A super easy, really amazingly delicious ham and potato soup from If you look at the recipe, you’ll see by the ratings that I’m not the only one who thought so.

Most of you know that I usually change the recipes somehow, but this time I followed the recipe exactly (well, I put in more ham but that doesn’t count). But the recipe is perfect–and did I mention easy? as is.


* 3 1/2 cups peeled and diced potatoes
* 1/3 cup diced celery I lied. I changed this. Hate cooked celery. I omitted.
* 1/3 cup finely chopped onion
* 3/4 cup diced cooked ham
* 3 1/4 cups water
* 2 tablespoons chicken bouillon granules
* 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
* 1 teaspoon ground white or black pepper, or to taste
* 5 tablespoons butter
* 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
* 2 cups milk


1. Combine the potatoes, celery, onion, ham and water in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the chicken bouillon, salt and pepper.
2. In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour with a fork, and cook, stirring constantly until thick, about 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk as not to allow lumps to form until all of the milk has been added. Continue stirring over medium-low heat until thick, 4 to 5 minutes.
3. Stir the milk mixture into the stockpot, and cook soup until heated through. Serve immediately.

Free Kindle book!

It’s that time again, another free Kindle download from Samhain Publishing.

Now through January 4th, you can download Oleander House by Ally Blue free from Amazon for your Kindle. Download link here.

When Sam Raintree goes to work for Bay City Paranormal Investigations, he expects his quiet life to change—he doesn’t expect to put his life and sanity on the line, or to fall for a man he can never have.

Book One in the Bay City Paranormal Investigation series.

Sam Raintree has never been normal. All his life, he’s experienced things he can’t explain. Things that have colored his view of the world and of himself. So taking a job as a paranormal investigator seems like a perfect fit. His new co-workers, he figures, don’t have to know he’s gay.

When Sam arrives at Oleander House, the site of his first assignment with Bay City Paranormal Investigations, nothing is what he expected. The repetitive yet exciting work, the unusual and violent history of the house, the intensely erotic and terrifying dreams which plague his sleep. But the most unexpected thing is Dr. Bo Broussard, the group’s leader.

From the moment they meet, Sam is strongly attracted to his intelligent, alluring boss. It doesn’t take Sam long to figure out that although Bo has led a heterosexual life, he is very much in the closet, and wants Sam as badly as Sam wants him.

As the investigation of Oleander House progresses and paranormal events in the house escalate, Sam and Bo circle warily around their mutual attraction, until a single night of bloodshed and revelation changes their lives forever.

Warning: this title contains explicit male/male sex, intense violence, and graphic language.

What’s your favorite…

Cookbook, craft or other non-fiction type of book? I have some Barnes and Noble gift cards to spend, and I really don’t need to buy any more fiction books right now (though I do have a list that I’m eagerly anticipating for 2009 and will share this week). So I’m going to buy a new cookbook or craft book. Which I probably don’t need either (especially the cookbooks, I have quite a few of those, but I so love them). But I figure something non-fiction would be more useful and practical at this point. So what are your favorites?

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