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Thursday, June 30, 2011

Sliced Avocado and Turkey Sandwich

I told my friend, India, that I sliced an Avocado and put it on a turkey sandwich.  She told me to try this yummy sandwich.  Take Ciabatta bread, place turkey on one slice, slice Avocado and place on top of the turkey (Mayo optional), top with another piece of Ciabatta, and place on a Panini press.  She says the Avocado melts and is scrumptious.  I am going to try this tonight, for sure. I bought Avocados today at Costco (cheaper than anywhere else).  Also, here is a tip for you:  Once you slice your Avocado, take any left overs and rub on your face, hands, wherever.  It makes the most fantastic moisturize.  A lady at Costco told me today that the pumice or seed in the Avocado can be used to exfoliate along with Avocado pulp.  Don't waste, use any leftovers on  your skin.  You know, that little bit on the back of the peel, rub it all over your hands.  Great for the skin.

Lash Discovery by Maybelline - Waterproof Mascara

I absolutely love Lash Discovery by Maybelline - just received a complement on my lashes today from my friend, India.  This is what I use.  You can get it at Wal-Mart or Walgreen's Drugstore.  A friend from Australia was visiting and she bought loads of it to take back with her as she cannot buy it there.  That is how I discovered this wonderful product.


http://www.amazon.com/Maybelline-Discovery-Waterproof-Mascara-Black/dp/B000T5NCTW

Maybelline Lash Discovery Waterproof Mascara, Black - 1 Each

Great Places to Bargain Shop

Some of the greatest places to shop, especially for women's clothing are Ross and Kohl's.  My daughter-in-law, Linda, turned me on to the great bargains at Ross.  I found a dress for my Mother-in-law to wear to a rehearsal dinner for $14.  And, it was very nice.  While I was looking, I found a dress that I bought a Macy's for no telling how much, right there on the rack at Ross's.  It was $39.  Also, Ross has great brand name shoes such as Nine West and Guess.  I was also looking for peasant blouses as they are quite the thing now.  Guess where I found them?  You got it!  Right there at Ross for $12.  You have to sometimes really look, but you never know the bargains that you will find at Ross.  They also have name brand purses as well.
Kohl's on the other hand, has great deals to especially in children's clothing.  Love shopping their children's department.  They have cute long dresses for summer and that is the fashion thing right now.  If you are into Vera Wang (I am not) she designs for Kohl's.  She does have some cute shoes.
Of course, my favorite place is Marshall's especially if I am on the market for shoes.  I bought 4 pair of shoes at Marshall's for less than $80.  They have many styles in the new wedge sandals.  I found a pair of pink wedge sandals for $12.  And, I have bought Kate Spade shoes at Marshall's.  Found a Tory Burch purse and a Kate Spade purse there as well. 
And, then, if you really want to shop, there is Off Saks Fifth Ave.  That is my favorite store.  They have great bargains, especially when they have sales.  They do have Tory Burch shoes at a good price sometimes.  The Off Saks Fifth Avenue in Hilton Head is the best one that I have found.  They always have great shoe selections.
And, then of course, there is the old faithful - Target and Wal-Mart.  I think Target is over-priced; however, you can usually find great knock-offs at Target.  I found all of my Twilight t-shirts at Wal-Mart for $5each.
So, there you have it, folks!  Looking for anything special?  Just ask me where to find it.  I just might know.
Oh, Yes, Yes, I was about to forget my favorite place in the whole wide world!!!!!!!!!!!!  UNCLAIMED BAGGAGE - Scottsboro, Alabama.  I bought about 10 pairs of shoes the last time I was there.  I love that place.  Love, love it!
Happy Shopping!!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Aspen Trees - Oil Painting

I am trying to create an oil painting of a photo taken in Aspen, Colorado of the beautiful Aspen trees.  In fact, while in Colorado, I got lots of photos to use as references for some terrific paintings.  However, this first painting is giving me a bit of trouble.  I should have primed the canvas first, or painted in a little blue sky to peak through the trees.  The photo that I am using as a reference is above.  Any suggestions???  No, you do not want to see the canvas just yet.  I just completed a portrait of a co-worker and her two dogs.  Unfortunately for her, the dogs look better than she does.  I mean, she is a beautiful girl, but I did a better job of the cute little doggies.  That is my deal, animals..according to Matthew and David, at least.  They say that I am better at painting animals.  I think they are right.  Should stick to panda bears, dogs and cats, maybe.    Fiddle-dee-dee.  I placed an Amazon link to an Aspen tree poster so that you can see the beautiful trees, although the poster is in the fall..gorgeous, huh?

Over Forty and Loving It? Well, Rock it! en pleine floraison

To the over forty population -  are you tired of seeing those glamorous twenty year-olds in magazines displaying their skinny bodies, toned muscles, boobs under their chins and rocking five-inch heels?     Why don’t they show pictures of the over forty, over fifty, over sixty, seventy and eighty crowd?  Can we not look glamorous, classy or chic at that age?  Do the editors of these magazines not understand who has the purchasing power?  Do they not care?  Obviously, they do not care and they do not need to care.  Well, we are going to change that!  Seldom do we pick up a magazine and see photographs of people of age. 
 And, what really set us off is an article on an online major network.   It read, “Swimsuits for women over  forty”.   We immediately clicked on the article and there was not one two- piece swimsuit.  They were all one- piece granny type swimsuits.  So, is that saying that we shouldn’t wear a two- piece? 
Well, we say, if the shoe fits, wear it.  And that shoe (the article) just does not  fit.  If we want to wear a two- piece and we think that we have the body for it, who is to stop us?  Who is to say that we cannot wear whatever we feel most comfortable and look our best in?
We are going to revolt!  A hairdresser in Atlanta  at least ten years ago, told one of us to stop wearing blue eye-shadow  as that blue shadow should not be worn by women over forty. He recommended a light shade of brown.  Well, he should have been told to concentrate on hair and not the color of one's shadow.
And, those six inch heels, if we can walk in them and if they are comfortable, we wear them.  Don’t try to put us in a pair of lace up shoes and a granny dress.   And, don’t tell us  that we cannot wear a short dress, at our age.  If we want to wear a short dress, we will.  Case in point, one of us walked into shop in an Atlanta mall recently.   The sales clerk asked if she could help.  She was asked about a cute mandarin orange dress.  The color was gorgeous.  She said, “I need to point out that the dress is short”.   Duh,  “so?"
We think clothing should be worn tastefully, but we don’t agree that women or men should be tossed aside just because they are over a certain age.   We decide what is tasteful, what we want to wear, what we think we should wear and what we do not wish to wear.   Society doesn’t make those decisions for us.  We are not our mothers,  we do not wear our daughter’s jeans; however, if we are so minded, we will.  In fact, skinny jeans are quite cool and leggings are quite comfortable.
The moral of all of this is:  Shame on all of the magazines that toss all of us “oldies” to the curb.  There is one thing to do about that:  Stop buying the magazines.  And, while we are on a role, don’t tell us that our opinion doesn’t matter  and don’t hide us in the middle pages of some magazine or newspaper.  We want the front cover, baby! And, more importantly, we want our voices heard.  Our opinion does matter.
So, here is to all of you out there over forty , fifty, sixty, seventy, eighty and even ninety!  Have a cosmopolitan enjoy life.  If you can rock it, wear it.  If you cannot, you might want to think twice about it.  Your decision, you decide.  For us, we are not going down without a fight!  As long as we can swing it, we will sting it.  Sting, baby, sting! 
 We know a lady who is eighty-eight years young and she is known to have a Cosmo with her girls and daughter-in-law.   Here’s to you, Joycie - It's Five O'clock Somewhere!  Rock it Girl!
In closing, we leave you with inspirational words from an era gone by, "Flower Power and Stay in the Zone" for you have the freedom to do and be as you please. More to come, pass this on to your friends and family.  All comments welcome.
en Pleine Floraison,   (In full bloom)
BC

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Visit to the Colorado Springs Mountain Zoo








Rocky Mountain High




Well, I now have a great appreciation for John Denver - at least to the lyrics of the songs that he sang.  Just got back from a trip to Colorado and what a state.  The mountains are just beautiful.  The Colorado River is also amazing.  We drove from Aspen to the Continental Divide.  What a view.  I am posting pictures from the trip.  From the streams to the Aspen trees, the rocky mountains and the snow-filled mountains - it was all breathtakingly beautiful.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

.John Denvier = Oh my goodness. Rocky Mountain High

Just visited Colorado and I  hava knew appreciation for John Denver. He is the best.  I cannot believe that  people all over the world love John Denver.  I had no respect for him until I visited Colorado.  I know what he sung about.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Paula Deen's Cheesecake Recipe with Praline Sauce

Picture of Cheesecake with Praline Sauce Recipe

 

 

This is one of my favorites...if I can make it, you can too.

 

Ingredients

Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted butter

Filling:

  • 3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups sour cream
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Praline Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup dark corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

For the crust, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter. Pat this mixture into the bottom and sides of a 9-inch spring form pan.

Make the filling: In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese and granulated sugar. Beat in the eggs, 1 at a time, and then beat in the vanilla. Pour the filling into the crust and bake for 1 hour. Remove the cake from the oven and cool for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the topping: In a bowl, mix the sour cream, sugar, and vanilla until well blended. Spread this mixture over the warm cake and return to the oven for 4 minutes. Let the cake cool to room temperature in the pan, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. At serving time, use a table knife to loosen the cake from the pan. Remove the sides of the pan and place the cake on a platter, leaving it on pan bottom. To make the praline sauce, in a small heavy saucepan stir together the brown sugar and cornstarch. Stir in the corn syrup and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the nuts and vanilla. Cool slightly. Serve the cheesecake, passing the sauce in a bowl with a small ladle. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.
http://www.amazon.com/Best-Cheesecake-Recipes-George-Geary/dp/0778800547

125 Best Cheesecake Recipes

Irish Creme Brulee Recipe from All Recipes

Irish Cream Creme Brulee Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons Irish cream liqueur
  • superfine sugar as needed

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Place 6 ramekins on a towel set in a roasting pan at least 3 inches deep.
  2. Stir together cream and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, and cook until very hot, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Whisk together egg yolks, vanilla, and Irish cream until combined. Slowly add 1/3 of the hot cream, whisking it in 2 tablespoons at a time until incorporated. Once you have incorporated 1/3 of the cream, you can stir in the remaining hot cream without fear of the mixture curdling.
  3. Pour custard into the ramekins, then fill roasting pan with boiling hot water to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake in preheated oven until set, 50 to 60 minutes.
  4. Once the custard has set, place ramekins on a wire rack, and allow to cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. Cover, and refrigerate until cold, about 4 hours. Custards may remain refrigerated until ready to serve.
  5. Unwrap the custards, and sprinkle about 1 teaspoon of superfine sugar onto each. Gently shake the custards so the sugar coats the entire top surface, then tip the custards to a 45 degree angle and shake off excess sugar.
  6. Using a small hand torch, melt the sugar by making short passes over top of the custards with the flame not quite touching. Continue melting the sugar until it turns deep brown. Once the sugar has melted and turned to caramel, the cold custard underneath will harden the sugar into a crispy crust. Serve immediately. Alternatively, the sugar-dusted custards may be browned underneath the broiler in the oven.

Creme Brulee Recipe

 

My husband says that I can tell a good Creme Brulee from a mile away.

Ingredients

  • 1 quart heavy cream
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 1 cup vanilla sugar, divided
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 2 quarts hot water

Directions

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Place the cream, vanilla bean and its pulp into a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, cover and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean and reserve for another use.
In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup sugar and the egg yolks until well blended and it just starts to lighten in color. Add the cream a little at a time, stirring continually. Pour the liquid into 6 (7 to 8-ounce) ramekins. Place the ramekins into a large cake pan or roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake just until the creme brulee is set, but still trembling in the center, approximately 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the roasting pan and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.
Remove the creme brulee from the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes prior to browning the sugar on top. Divide the remaining 1/2 cup vanilla sugar equally among the 6 dishes and spread evenly on top. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top. Allow the creme brulee to sit for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Molten Lava Cakes - Paula Deen Recipe

Picture of Molten Lava Cakes Recipe

 

 

Ingredients

  • 6 (1-ounce) squares bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 (1-ounce) squares semisweet chocolate
  • 10 tablespoons (1 1/4 stick) butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons orange liqueur

Directions

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Grease 6 (6-ounce) custard cups. Melt the chocolates and butter in the microwave, or in a double boiler. Add the flour and sugar to chocolate mixture. Stir in the eggs and yolks until smooth. Stir in the vanilla and orange liqueur. Divide the batter evenly among the custard cups. Place in the oven and bake for 14 minutes. The edges should be firm but the center will be runny. Run a knife around the edges to loosen and invert onto dessert plates.

Appetizers - Chicken Livers, Bacon and Waterchestnuts

I used to make this appetizer a lot.  Really liked it although you will think that it sounds gross.  Here goes. 

Chicken Livers - 1 box (about 30)
1 lb. bacon - cut in half
1 can of water chestnuts

I always par boil the chicken livers - then drain on a paper towel.  Cut chicken livers in half (or if that seems like a lot of trouble you can skip).  If you cut the chicken liver in half, place a water chestnut in between the two halves.  If not, just use whole chicken liver and a water chestnut.  Wrap with a piece of the 'half' bacon and secure with a toothpick.  Broil for about 5 minutes on each side or until bacon is crisp.  Serve while warm. 

More "Me and Carol" stories

I had a lot of comments regarding my Best Friends story about Carol and myself.  We have so many stories.  We had so much fun growing up.  My Mom says that we were always giggling and laughing and being just plain silly.  Carol was and still is a beautiful girl and has a body to boot.  I always say that she looks as if she walked out of a fashion magazine. 
We were always trying to get attention (me...she always got plenty of attention from everyone).  So, one day, we came up with a plot.  I was feeling sorry for myself.  No one loved me.  I had a boyfriend.  One of those kind of sort of things. So, we schemed.  Carol went to school and told all of our friends that I had the big C. Yes, cancer.  Now, back then, you rarely heard of anyone having cancer.  She put on her sad face as she spun her tale.  The morning routine was to meet your friends in the auditorium and chit chat before school.  Well, I walked in the morning after Carol had shared my fate with everyone.  I got pitiful looks and all of our friends just scurried away.  So, this went on for a week or so and all I got was a little bit of sympathy but nothing big.  I cannot recall who found out about it, but someone did. The story got back to Carol's grandmother who told Carol's grandmother.  Finally, the story made its way to one of Carol's neighbors.  She was a funny lady who had a South Alabama accent.  She came over to talk to Ruth (Carol's Mom).  Carol's Mom told her about my sad situation.  So, this lady says, "They, Lord have mercy.  I was just over there (talking about my house) and Boots told her to get her lazy buns off that couch and wash the dishes." 
Well, they couldn't figure out what in the heck was wrong with my Motherfor talking to me like that since I was on my dying bed. This lady kept shaking her head thinking my Mother had gone off of her rocker.
 Ruth looked around and saw Carol in the hallway bent over laughing so hard that she was crying.
Yes, we nearly got a good, old fashioned beating for that one.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Country Strong - Movie with Tim McGraw and Gwyneth Paltrow

  I thought this was a good movie partly because I think Gwyneth Paltrow has a great voice.  The movie was great and I thought that she and Tim were really great in the movie.  She played a sassy character although sad..but when she performed in a concert in the movie..she nailed the part.  The soundtrack is great as well.

Best Friends Forever - Carol and I

I have had a "best friend" for along time now.  I am trying to recall how we met.  I do not remember although we were in the same room one year in elementary school.  She was in the 4th grade and I was in the 3rd grade and both of classes were together in one room.  (Yes, I know, but those were the days in LA Elementary and LA does not stand for Los Angeles).  My friend is also my cousin.  We were together constantly and had so much fun growing up together.  We were often referred to as "Little S...ts" by some.  I have blogged about her Mom, Ruth before and her marvelous chocolate gravy.I don't know how our mother's lived through our years of growing up.  I have so many stories that I could share.  I love her dearly.  In fact, yesterday, I called her on my way home from work.  I kept listening for the ringing sound from my cellphone when suddenly I heard someone say, "hello, hello".  It was my friend.  She was calling me at the same time.  Imagine that.

Growing up, we were always primping and putting on make-up.  We got our summer sun-tans from the cotton field - yes, chopping cotton in short shorts.  It's a wonder that my granddaddy didn't have a conniption fit.  And, if her Mom or mine had caught us leaving home in those shorts it would have been "Katie bar the door."  Sometimes, we would just roll them up to our pantie line. 

My friend ---yes, Carol, you know I am talking about you---was also my "personal" hair dresser back in the days of teased hair.  She "fixed" everyone's hair.  She would nearly pull me ball headed at times.  But, she could put my hair up in the prettiest french twist and she used enough "Aqua-Net" spray that not a hair on my head moved for days.  One time, I recall, I wanted my hair to be blonder.  Carol had a great idea.  We got into Memma's or someones food coloring and she used a bottle of yellow food coloring on my hair.  It looked very nice, yawl, yes indeed it did.  Until about noon that day in class when someone came up to me in school and touched my hair.  They showed me their fingers.  Green.  Yes, indeedy, my hair was green.

One summer, we "borrowed" someones car that lived in LA.  This guy had to have been a little nuts, but heck, Carol could drive anything from a log truck to a tractor (and she did).  We told the poor guy that we were going up to Boxes Cove to see my Grandmother who lived there.  Well, that is exactly where we went.  Coming back; however, we saw a huge rattle snake in the road dead as a doornail.  Carol stopped the car and said, "I bet we could get our picture in the paper with this snake."  We had seen other people proudly displaying a rattle snake that they had killed.  In fact, the paper printed several pictures that summer.  "Why not us," we asked as we scoured around for a big stick.  We scooped the snake up and put it in the floorboard in the back of the car.  We got to Carol's house and went inside to call the Daily Sentinel.  They kindly informed us that they had seen one to many snakes that summer and it wasn't newsworthy.  We took the snake out and threw it under her Mom's rose bushes.  After all, we had to take the car back to the guy who let us borrow it.  We could not take it back with a snake in it.  Well, Carol's Mother came out to work in her yard.  She always had beautiful flowers.  (I have to admit a saw a post on FB by her grandson, Lee, about Ms. Latham's beautiful flowers and was reminded of this story )--so decided to tell it.  Anyway, Ms. Latham (I always called her Ruth as she did not mind and was the best) came out, saw the snake and almost had a heart attack.   Carol and I were walking up in the yard about that time and we ran up to assure her that the snake was dead.  I don't know how she kept from skinning us alive.  And, there are many other stories about the two of us.  Another day, another time.

But a true friend is forever and that is what Carol is to me.  And, now you know, some of the story.

My Father's Daughter by Gwyneth Paltrow

Gwyneth Paltrow has a cookbook out that has a lot of recipes that her father shared with her.  It is a very good book.  Delicious pancake recipes, too.  Gwyneth Paltrow also has a blog that sometimes has great recipes as well as a lot of interesting articles.  You can check it out at http://www.goop.com/
If you haven't seen the movie, "Country Strong" with Paltrow and Tim McGraw, I recommend it.  I thought that she was exceptional in this movie.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Mimi's Corner: Water Balloons and Entertaining the Little Ones

Mimi's Corner: Water Balloons and Entertaining the Little Ones: "Sometimes the simple things in life can thrill the daylights out of little ones. Late one afternoon, Papa told Taylor, our nearly five year..."

Water Balloons and Entertaining the Little Ones

Sometimes the simple things in life can thrill the daylights out of little ones.  Late one afternoon, Papa told Taylor, our nearly five year-old granddaughter that he had one more trick up his sleeve.  He filled balloons with water and we went out into the backyard and yes, I got blasted by both of them.  She giggled and laughed and thought having a "water balloon" fight was the greatest thing in the world.  I think she actually thought that Papa invented game.

Another thriller for little ones are lightening bugs or fireflies.  We sat on the patio and I remarked, "there are tons of lightening bugs next door, but none in our yard".  I think they heard me as it wasn't long that they were flying all around the rose bushes.  Reminds me so much of days gone by to see those beautiful lightening bugs flitting around.  Memma always provided all of us kids with a canning jar with holes punched in the lid so that we could keep all of our "caught" treasures.  I loved to see them "lighting up" in the jar.  Of course, if one didn't let them out of the jar, they would be dead as door nails in the morning.

Summer, there is nothing like it.  I remember sitting outside under a tall old tree, eating a big slice of watermelon.  Granddaddy would always buy a huge watermelon for all of us kids.  We sat out on the bench of the picnic table with watermelon and yes, a salt shaker.  Memma spread a newspaper on the table.  And, yes, we did spit the seeds across the table at each other.  That was part of the fun of eating a watermelon.  My favorite meal is Publix fried chicken and a slice of watermelon.  And, for those of you leaving near a Costco check out their watermelon.  I have had several from Costco this summer and they are so sweet.

The lazy days of summer.  Gotta love it.  We just had a storm here in Atlanta and things have cooled off a bit.  However, I am so sure it will be hot again tomorrow.  I have no complaints.  I love summertime.

Do-It-Yourself Anti-Aging Skin Care

I have been mixing and making my own skin care products for a couple of years now.  Not to say that I do not break down and use other products, but I do love making my own scrubs, etc.  Olive oil can be used to remove make-up.  Light vegetable oil is good for preventing those pesky little wrinkles around the eyes.  Plain yogurt also can be used as a cleanser.  It contains lactic acid which is a natural alpha-hydroxy benefit. Sugar scrubs are good for removing dead skin cells.  You can use a sugar scrub once or twice a week.  Simply mix white or raw sugar with an oil such as oil oil or grapeseed oil.  Any oil will do.  Avocado Mask is great for your face.  Simply mash an over ripe Avocado and mix in a little honey.  You really don't even need the honey, but honey adds extra moisture.

Lemon rubbed on age spots will lighten them.  Rub lemon on the spots two or three times daily. 
Mix olive oil with two or three drops of vitamin E oil and use on face and neck before bedtime.  This will act as a wrinkle fighter.

You can also make your own Vitamin C serum ---You can use dissovle 1 tsp of Pure L-ascorbic acid with 2 tsp distilled water, mix in a glass container - then add 1/2 tsp glycerin.  Put in a brown or glass bottle and shake.  Note:  Vitamin C can become oxidized so make it as you use it.  This is why when you purchase over the counter Vitamin C serums..you really do not know what you are getting.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Ava and Will - Painting - Oil

I loved the photograph of little Ava G. and Will so much that I did an oil of them.  They are so cute and so much bigger now.  But, not bad for someone who doesn't do portraits that often.  I need to learn to take better pictures of my paintings.

Painting of Leo as he Battles Snow Storm with a Shovel

Hi, this is a painting that I did from a photograph of the snow in Upstate New York.  My father-in-law, Leo, prepares to battle the snow pile.  Isn't he just the cutest?  He had his 90th birthday in March!

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Help Movie will be out in August

I am going to be waiting in line to see The Help by Kathryn Stockett.  That book is one of the best books that I have read.  Cannot wait for the movie.

Stephanie Bond's Body Movers

Stephanie Bond just informed me on Twitter that she has a new book (mini maybe) sequel to those great Body Mover's books.  The setting for the Body Mover's is in Atlanta and it is hilarious.  She has a lot of great books, but Body Mover's series is my favorite.  I hope that a movie will be made! 

Marissa's Butterfinger Cake for my Birthday

My daughter, Holly, made Marissa's  Birthday.  It was so delicious.  However, a funny thing happened.  She brought butterfingers home and my little Granddaughter ate one of the Butterfingers, no knowing that they were for the cake.  So we had half Butterfingers and half Reese's Peanut Butter Cups on the cake.  Loved it!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Mini Mac and Cheese Cups from Good Morning America

Mini Mac & Cheese Cups

Ingredients

  • 1 favorite pie dough or prepared pie dough

  • 2 ounces finely grated Longhorn Cheddar or yellow cheddar cheese (for tops)

  • 1 pound DeCecco brand mini Penne Rigate or other small

  • 4 cups half and half

  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter

  • 6 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika, plus more for garnishing

  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

  • 4 ounces gruyere cheese, grated, best-quality

  • 16 ounces extra-sharp Longhorn cheddar or white cheddar cheese, grated, best-quality

  • 6 ounces Fontina cheese, best-quality

  • 2 ounces grated real Parmesan-Reggiano cheese


  • Special Equipment:

  • 2 inch Biscuit Cutter

  • 2 mini muffin tins


  • Cooking Directions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.
    Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook at a rolling boil until just tender. Drain, rinse under cold water, drain again and set aside in a large bowl.
    Bring the half and half just to a boil in a heavy saucepan and set aside. Meanwhile, melt the butter in another heavy saucepan. Add the flour, and whisk over low heat for 5 minutes. Do not brown. Remove from the heat. Add the hot liquid to the flour mixture, and whisk well. Add the paprika, season with the salt and pepper, and return the pan to a low heat. Add half of all of the cheeses and stir until combined . Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens; about 5 minutes. Add cheese and stir until it all melts. Add sauce to the pasta. Toss well to coat completely. Let cool to room temperature.
    Meanwhile, roll out your dough and using a 2-inch biscuit cutter, cut circles of dough from crust. Place crust in a mini muffin time and prick the bottom. Place another mini-muffin tin lightly over the crusts -- this will prevent the dough from shrinking. Pre-bake the crust in oven for 7-10 minutes or until set. Let cool and spoon the mini Mac & Cheese into the cups. Sprinkle the tops with the yellow cheddar. Re-bake Mac & Cheese cups in a 350 F oven for 10 minutes or until brown on top and cheese sauce is bubbly.

    Strawberry Shortcake Cheese Cake Ice Cream and Cream Cheese Shortcakes

    2 1/2 cups half-and-half, divided
    2 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream, divided
    2 3/4 cups sugar
    2 8 oz packages cream cheese
    2 pounds fresh strawberries
    5 cream cheese shortcakes

    In a large sauce pan, whisk together, 1 1/2 cups half-and-half, 1 1/2 cups cream, 2 1/2 cups sugar , and eggs until combined.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently; remove from heat.

    In a large bowl, beat cream cheese at medium speed with a mixer until creamy.  Gradually beat in hot cream mixture.  Cover and chill completely about 2 hours.

    In a medium bowl, combine strawberries and remaining 1/4 cup sugar, tossing gently to coat.  Let stand for 15 minutes.

    Stir in remaining 1 cup half-and-half, remaining 1 cup cream, strawberries and crumbled shortcakes into mixture.  Pour mixture into container of an electric ice cream freezer, and freeze according to directions.  Ice cream will be soft.  You can freeze in a different container to make it more firm.

    Cream Cheese Shortcakes

    2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 tsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 cup butter
    1 3 oz pkg cream cheese, softened
    1/3 cup heavy whipping cream

    Preheat oven to 375 Degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar and baking powder and salt.  Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly.  Add cream cheese, stirring to combine.  Add cream, stirring just until dry ingredients are mositened.  On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 3/4 inch thickness.  Cut with a 2 1/2 inch round cutter, rerolling dough as necessary.  Place shortcakes on prepared baking sheet and bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned.  Cool.  Crumble 5 shortcakes; reserve remaining shortcakes for another use.
    http://www.amazon.com/Kuhn-Rikon-2216-Corn-Zipper/dp/B001UOCYLI

    OXO Good Grips Dough Blender

    Peanut Butter Cookie Cups with Chocolate Ice Cream

    This is easy as pie to make and yummy! 

    1 16.5 ounce pkg refrigerated peanut butter cookie dough (yummy I could eat this right out of the package)
    1/2 gallon of chocolate ice cream

    Garnish:  quartered chocolate-covered peanut butter cups (I use Reese's), choclate ice cream topping

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray 24 miniature muffin cups iwht nonstick cooking spray.  Divide cookie dough into 24 equal portions.  Press each portion into bottom and up sides (important...up the sides).  Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.  Let cool for at least 15 mintues.  Remove from pans and fill each cup with a scoop (small) of ice cream, garnish with Peanut Butter cup pieces and chocolate ice cream...serve immediately.

    Lord Have Mercy ----a Corn Zipper

    Why on God's green earth did I not invent this????  It is awesome!!!

    http://www.amazon.com/Kuhn-Rikon-2216-Corn-Zipper/dp/B001UOCYLI


    Kuhn Rikon Corn Zipper

    Summer Drink - Blackberry Tea

    1 quart water
    4 family size tea bags
    1 1/2 cups sugar
    1/2 cup blackberry syrup
    1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
    Garnish with lemons and blackberries

    In a medium sauce pan, boil the water; add tea bags, remove sauce pan from heatand let stand for ten minutes.  Remove and discard tea bags. Pour into a gallon pitcher.  Stir in sugar, syrup (you can get the blackberry syrup in the pancake section of the grocery store) and lemon juice.  Add enough water to make 1 gallon.  Cover and chill for at least 4 hours.  Garnish with lemons and blackberries.  Yummy!

    Spring Vegetable Salad with Radishes and English Peas

    I love this recipe.  I love fresh radishes and snap peas.

    2 quarts water
    1 pound asparagus, tough ends trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
    1 8oz pkg sugar snap peas
    2 cups frozen peas
    1/2 cup thinly sliced radishes (about 5)
    1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (light)
    2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
    1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
    1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/4 tsp ground pepper

    In a large sauce pan, bring the water to boil over medium heat.  Add asparagus and snap peas; boil for 2 minutes.  Add green peas; boil for 1 minute.  Drain mixture immediately; rinse with cold water until veggies are room temperature.  Add radishes; cover, and chill for 2 hours.

    In a small bowl whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, mustard, dill, salt and pepper.  Add olive oil mixture to veggies, tossing gently to coat.  Cover and chill for 4 hours.    Do not combine vegetables and dressing until 4 hours before serving.  Don't want them to get soggy.

    Brenda's Baked Brie

    Okay, here we go.  2 or 3 rounds of Brie (depending on how many people I am going to have over.  I like to use different Jams to spice things up a bit.

    Ingredients

    • 1 large sheet of puff pastry dough or 1 tube of refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
    • 1 round or wedge of Brie cheese (do not remove rind)
    • Raspberry Jam, or other sweet jam (cherry is really good)
    • Brown sugar
    • 1/4 cup of maple syrup
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
    2 On a stick-free cookie sheet, lay out the puff pastry or the crescent rolls flat; put brie round or wedge on top.
    2 Spread jam on brie, fold dough over top, cutting off excess dough. Drizzle maple syrup and place a handful of brown sugar on top. If you use crescent rolls, just make sure that you cover the brie with the rolls.
    3 Bake at 350ยบ for 25-30 minutes, pastry should be golden brown. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.
    Serve with crackers and apple slices

    Baked Brie

    Cold Brie Dip - Great for Parties

    Another Paula Deen recipe.  This actually looks really great when you serve it.  Very classy look and I love brie.

    2 heads garlic
    1 T. olive oil
    1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened
    1 cup sour cream
    1 (5 oz.) package creme de Brie
    1 T. Worcestershire sauce
    2 tsp. lemon zest
    1 tsp. seasoned salt
    1 fresh artichoke
    Blanched green beans, blanched asparagus, zucchini spears, crackers


    Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Remove white papery skin from garlic heads (do not peel or separate cloves).  Cut off top 1/4 inch of heads to expose cloves, leaving root ends intact.  Place garlic heads, cut sides up, on a 6" square of heavy- duty aluminum foil.  Drizzle each evenly with olive oil.  Bring corners of foil over garlic, sealing tightly.  Bake for 45 mintues or until garlic is soft.  Remove foil.  Squeeze garlic to extract pulp; discard skins. 

    In the work bowl of a food processor, combine garlic pulp, cream cheese, sour cream, creme de Brie, Worcestershire sauce, zest and salt. Process until smooth (you can also put this in a blender).  Cover and chill for 4 hours. 

    Trim stem of artichoke so bottom is level.  Cut out center core of artichoke.  Spread outer leaves apart, and place a small bowl in the center.  Spoon dip into bowl. Serve with green beans, asparagus, zucchini spears, and crackers. 

    Pecan Date Cheese Wafers

    I love Paula Deen and I love her recipes.  This is one of her recipes and is great for an appetizer.  I love dates.  You can stuff dates (wtih almonds) or you can wrap dough around then (gotta remove that seed) or make the recipe below and enjoy with a glass of wine or good old sweet tea!

    1 1/2 cups butter, softened
    1 pound block sharp cheddar cheese, grated
    1 cup finely chopped pecans
    1 cup finely chopped dates (you can buy them already chopped..I always use fresh dates)
    1/2 tsp ground red pepper
    4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    Sugar

    In a large bowl, combine butter, cheese,pecans, dates and red pepper.  Beat a medium speed with an electric mixer until well combined.  Gradually add flour, beating until just combined.  Wrap dough in a plastic wrap, and refrigerate for two hours.  Preheat overn to 350 degrees.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper.  Roll dough into 1 inch balls.  Place balls 3 inches apart on prepared baking sheets.  Using a flat bottom glass dipped in sugar, flatten balls to 1/4 inch thickness.  Bake 10 to 12 minutes until lightly browned.  Let cool on pans for 2 minutes.  Remove and cool on wire racks ...OR JUST POP IN YOUR MOUTH AND BE DONE WITH IT!!!!!

    Thursday, June 9, 2011

    Memma's Down Home Country Cooking

    If you have read any of the blogs, then you know that my Memma was the light of my life.  I have collected a lot of her recipes and am trying to post as many as possible.  I feel like today, cooking is a lost art as well as canning.  I know that for me, personally, I am in traffic sometimes three hours a day and the last thing that I want to do when I come home from work is cook.  Publix fried chicken taste just fine to me.  However, I do sometimes feel a bit guilty.  I remember the great meals that Memma used to cook.  Seems that it took her no time to whip up supper. 

    I love baking and I will never forget the smell of spices in her kitchen espcially right after Thanksgiving.  That is when she started baking for Christmas.  I cannot wait to share some of my Christmas recipes.  Her Orange Slice Candy cake is divine.  I wish that I had a piece of it now with a good up of coffee.  Yum, yum.  I try to bake at Christmas more or less as a tribute to Memma.

    Memma's Down Home Cooking - Never Can Sweet Cucumber Pickles

    1 peck fresh cucumbers
    2 tbs salt
    2 boxes powdered alum
    5 quarts full strength apple cider vinegar
    10 tbs sugar
    1 box pickling spices

    Put whole cucumbers in stone churn or glass jar.  Dissolve salt in enough cold water to cover cucumbers.  Put saucer over cucumbers to weigh down then cover with cloth.  Let stand two weeks.  Remove cloth and saucer.   Slice as you wish.  Can be cut into chunks, slices or strips.  Put cut up cucumbers back into the churn.

    Dissolve alum in cold water - enough to cover cucumbers.  Let stand 24 hours.  Add vinegar.  Let stand 24 hours.  Pour off and throw away the liquid.  Put a layer of cucumbers and a layer of sugar ending with a layer of sugar.  Add spices last.  Let stand 2 to 3 weeks before eating.  Cover jar good and use pickles as needed.  They will keep in the churn/jar.  This makes about 2 gallons of pickles.

    Strawberry Salad

    1 cup water
    1 small can crushed pineapple
    1/4 cup sugar
    1 package strawberry jello
    1 cup whipped cream
    1cup chopped pecans
    1 pkg cream cheese

    Bring water, pineapple and sugar to a boil.  Add jello.  Let set until it begins to congeal.  Fold in whipped cream, pecans and cream cheese.  Chill.

    Creamy Hot Artichoke Dip - Seven Layer Dip

    I love this dip and if you are so minded, you can throw in crap meat (a small can will do).

    1 can Artichoke hearts, drained
    1 cup Hellman's Mayo
    1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
    1 clove garlic, finely chopped
    Combine all ingredients, bake uncovered at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes.  Serve with french baguette rounds or crackers.

    Seven Layer Dip

    1 can refried beans
    2 cups sour cream
    1 pkg dry taco mix
    1 lb hamburger
    chopped tomatoes
    lettuce
    avocado dip
    Shredded cheese

    Brown hamburger with the taco mix.  In a large dish (rectangular) spread refried beans, next spread sour cream, hamburger mix, chopped tomatoes, lettuce and avocado dip and top with shredded cheese (about two cups).

    Cream Cheese Dip, Sour Cream Dip and Cheese Dip

    Cheese Dip

    1 lb. Velveeta Cheese
    1 can of Ro Tel Queso (Diced tomatoes and green chilies)
    1 lb. cooked sausage
    1 can black eyed peas, drained
    Melt the cheese and stir in Ro Tel Queso, sausage and peas.
    You can keep this warm in a crock pot if desired

    Sour Cream Dip
    Mix one carton sour cream with 1 pkg Lipton onion soup mix....

    Cream Cheese Dip

    1 8 oz pkg cream cheese
    1 bunch of green onions, chopped
    2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
    1 pkg deli ham, chopped/diced
    Chop ham and onion (including the blades) until fine.  Mix into cream cheese.  Add worcestershire sauce.  Serve with crackers.

    Wednesday, June 8, 2011

    Walking the Railroad Tracks

    Have yawl ever walked the railroad tracks?  When I was growing up, me and my Granddaddy would walk the railroad tracks to Latham's Grocery store.  I remember walking down the railroad one day and just as we got in front of a neighbor's house who lived just off of the railroad tracks, she walked out and yelled at my Granddaddy.  He left me standing on the tracks and walked over to a gated fence in front of her house.  They were shooting the breeze and I stood on the tracks waiting patiently.   Granddaddy wasn't that far away from me.  A clap of thunder came out of no where.  Scared the daylights out of me and I started screaming and having a hissy fit.  Granddaddy bounded back onto the tracks to calm me down.  I thought the thunder was a freight train barreling down on me.  And, no, that wasn't the last time that I walked those tracks.  We used to lay pennies on the tracks and after a train passed, we would go back and look for the pennies. 

    We used to pick cotton beside the tracks and the conductors would go by and throw out a handful of candy to us little "cotton pickers".  Fun fun! 

    Of course, the railroad tracks weren't such fun for my Mom.  Years ago, she was going to work one morning.  There were no bars on the tracks that came down when a train came along.  It was just before daylight.  She said that she did not think that the train blew its horn and did not see the light from the train.  That train was right upon her.  It hit her car and totalled it.  One of the most frightening calls that I have gotten in my life was someone telling me that my Mom was hit by a train.  Of course, we left Atlanta and drove over to the hospital.  She had broken ribs, etc.  We went into the hospital room and it was so somber.  Poor thing.  She could barely move.  Everyone was in shock that this had happened to her.  My sister was almost in tears.  Well, the fact was that as soon as her ribs healed, she would be okay. She was one lucky person.  However, to break the mood, my husband started singing "Grandma got run off by a freight train", to break the mood.  Needless to say, that went over like a lead balloon.

    Tuesday, June 7, 2011

    The Tennessee River

    While driving down the mountain (Highway 35?) to the town of Scottsboro (home of Unclaimed Baggage) you will see the most beautiful site.  From Atlanta, you can drive down Sand Mountain (there are actually two sides of the mountain) and I always come down the Dutton side; however, there is the Section side of the mountain.  The views are spectacular.  All you see is the sprawling Tennessee River.  It is just a site for sore eyes.  I lived in Scottsboro for years and was oblivious to having that beautiful river right in my back door.  No wonder the group Alabama sang about it! 

    http://www.amazon.com/Tennessee-River/dp/B00137ZT7S

    Monday, June 6, 2011

    Don't Throw Away Those Orchids

    I bought a pretty orchid plant in Costco several years ago.  There was a tag on it that read, "When the blooms die just simply throw the plant away and buy another one.  They are so cheap."

    After the blooms died, the leaves were still a beautiful shade of green so I decided to enjoy the leaves until they fell off, died or do whatever Orchid leaves do.  A year later, I was still enjoying the green of the Orchid leaves and guess what?  You got it.  I saw a litt bud or two and by golly, that thing bloomed again.  And, my beautiful Orchid blooms each year.  How about that? 

    As my neighbor was preparing to move back to London, she brought over an Orchid plant and left for me.  It was in bloom and the same thing.  A year later, it is blooming again.  What a pleasant summer surprise.  I keep the plants on the ledge of the tub close to a bathroom window.  Never knew that I could be an Orchid grower!  I think that I will buy a couple more.  How neat will that be to have a room full of Orchids?

    Yawl come back now, ya hear...Never know what you are going to see on this blog.

    Storing Coconut Oil in the Summer

    Hey, guys, if you are using coconut oil for moisturizing your skin, take my advice and store it in a cool place.  You may also need to keep it in the refrigerator during the hot summer months.  I am either going to need to crank up the air or put mine in the refrigerator as it keeps melting on me.  You can still use it, but if it is melted, then it doesn't last as long. 

    Grease up!  Keep that skin moisturized.  Helps with that old devil crepe skin, don't you know.

    The Family Reunion - and Aunt Ilene's PB Cake

    We traveled to Alabama yesterday (six hour trip - 3 hours over and 3 hours back) and all I could think about was my Aunt Ilene's Peanut Butter Cake.  We got to Alabama early and as it was First Monday, some of our group had to go around the Courthouse Square to see all of the goodies on display.  Taylor and I spent some time in the garden at my Aunt's house.  We gathered fresh lettuce, washed it and ate some like little rabbits.  Then, it was off to Cousin Joey's house for the reunion.  Cousin Joey lives in my Great-Grandmother and Grandfather's house.  He has really fixed it up nice.  He farms there and has cows, etc so it was nice for the kids to get to see the farm animals.  Talk about food.  I knew that it would be impolite to just go for the PB cake right off the bat so I got in line and tired the fresh corn, green beans, cole slaw, home-made barbecue (by Charlene and Scotty).  They had everything from watermelon and canteloupe to 7 ingredient salad, sweet potato casserole, fried chicken.  I wolfed that down and went straight to the dessert table.  Well, I looked and I looked.  WHAT!  NO PB CAKE.  I politely got some of Marissa's Butter Finger Cake which was to die for, too, but I really wanted the PB cake.  Also, Annie had a delicious coconut cake.  And, then there was Red Velvet Cake, Italian Creme Cake, but no PB cake.  I thought maybe I missed it.  I went to the drink table and looked.  I looked under the table.  Fnally, I sat down and whispered to one of my Aunt's., "Where is the PB cake?"
    "She forgot it," she informed me.  I thought I would just pass out right then and there.  "I'll go back for it, " I informed her.  Well, I looked around and did not see Aunt Ilene.  Bless her heart.  She went all of the way back from Boxes Cove to Larkinsville to get that PB cake.  There was a happy ending to the day after all.

    Now, my family had a fit over Marissa's dessert.  Here is the Butter inger Cake recipe provided by Marissa.

    1 Box of yellow cake mix
    1 can sweetened condensed milk
    2 butterfinger candy bars
    Large container cool whip

    Bake cake as directed on box.  Let cool. Poke holes in the cake  with a fork and pour sweetened condensed milk over it.  Spread large container cool whip over the cake. Crush butterfinger bars over cool whip.  Drizzle with caramel.  Eat and enjoy!

    Yawl come back now, ya hear!

    Friday, June 3, 2011

    Remembering Aunt Carrie

    Does anyone from Larkinsville remember Aunt Carrie?  She lived down the railroad tracks from Memma and Granddaddy.  I remember her wearing a sun bonnet and an apron over her dress.  She wore black old timey shoes like my Aunt Nellie.  Most of been hard walking down the tracks to Memma and Granddaddy's in those shoes.  But walk she did.  She would come to see us every now and then.  I remember her sometimes bringing a chocolate cake that was simply delicious.  Sometimes, Aunt Carrie would visit on wash day.  Memma would have that old wringer washing machine in the middle of the kitchen floor and a chair would be pushed up against the washer.  The cane backed chair held a big old wash tub filled with hot water for rinsing.  After the clothes washed, Memma would "run" the clothes through the wringer and into the "rinsing" water.  Then back through to wring them out again.  Then, she had to hang them on the clothesline. 

    But, back to Aunt Carrie.  Her face was small and dark, almost the color of dark chocolate.  Thinking back, she might remind you of a walking Hershey's bar.  She was the kindest, sweetest lady.  I am not sure why everyone called her Aunt Carrie, but that is just who she was...Aunt Carrie.  She lived alone as her husband had been dead for along time and her children were grown.  I loved her visits and her chocolate cake.  Yummy.  Well, one day her sons decided that she shouldn't live alone and they moved her to town (Scottsboro) with them.  I was so sad.

    One Sunday, I was at Latham's Grocery with Granddaddy and a big, shiny car pulled up to the gas pump.  Aunt Carrie's son got out, all decked out in his Sunday best, and Aunt Carrie was sitting in the back seat.  She looked so frail.  She got out of the car and gave me and Granddaddy a big old hug.  I never saw her again.  But, I remember her kindness to this day. 

    Yawl come back now, ya hear!

    My Aunt Ilene - Quilting, Baking, Cooking, Canning - at 80

    My Aunt Ilene is one of the best cooks in the world.  I shared her Peanut Butter icing recipe on here awhile back.  She makes the best peanut butter cakes in the world.  I think I bragged about eating 1/2 of a cake last time I was home.  She loves to bake.  Maybe that is where I get my love of baking cakes from.  I love pretty cake platters, too.  Nothing like walking into a clean kitchen with a beautiful cake sitting on a pedestal cake plate. 
    Well, not only does Ilene bake wonderful cakes, but she embroiders beautiful designs and makes quilts.  She did a gorgeous State Bird Quilt. Ilene hand embroiders each square and sets together.  She is making each little girl in our family a doll quilt (really big enough to be a baby quilt).  I am so excited because little Taylor and Katie are going to get their quilts this weekend.  She also cans.  She spends a lot of the time during the summer breaking beans, shucking corn, and peeling tomatoes.  Yes, there is nothing like fresh vegetables from a canning jar.  And, this woman is ---well, maybe a little bit over 80 years young.  She doesn't look a day over 60!  She has always been one of my favorite Aunts.  She has a heart of gold and is very loving and kind.  She is so good to people.  Probably like my Mom...good to people to a fault.  But, she is another Jewel of the Nile from Larkinsville. 

    Wow, Larkinsville really turned out some good, good people many who are now smiling down upon us from heaven.  But, we still got a lot of precious people left.  Of course, we want to hold onto them forever!


    http://www.amazon.com/Southern-Cakes-Irresistible-Everyday-Celebrations/dp/0811853705l
    http://www.amazon.com/Godinger-Crystal-Freedom-10-Inch-Footed/dp/B0002XIQI8


    Yawl come back now, ya hear!

    Thursday, June 2, 2011

    The Rolling Store

    Way, way back in the day, a big, red bus looking apparatus used to come slowly rolling down the main drag of Larkinsville and go around the circle.  The town of Larkinsville fit inside that big circle.  There were no traffic lights and only a couple of stop signs.  Memma would always take me to "meet"  the Rolling Store.  We would walk from the farm across the railroad tracks to the main street and the Rolling Store would slow down and stop in front of Ms. Metcalf's house.  She was a sweet old lady.  Just loved her to death.  She would come out as well.  We stood and the driver would turn away from his duties as driver of the "Rolling Store" and face the window.  He would turn down a "counter top" and sit there and wait on all of his customers.  Memma usually treated me to a piece of penny candy.  I loved the penny candy because this was an extra reward for all of that cotton I picked.  Does anyone remember the Rolling Store?  Was it called the Gibson Rolling Store? 

    Yawl Come Back Now, You Hear?

    Wednesday, June 1, 2011

    To Walk or Not to Walk - "Three Little Birds" and "Old Alabama"

    Checked the temperature in Duluth....99 degrees...what is up with that?  It is so hot, but after eating a ton of mashed potatoes....hmm...I think I have to hit it.  Did you exercise today?

    Oh, and listened to a great song today..Bob Marley's Don't Worry, Be Happy...Did you know the actual name of the song is "Three Little Birds"?  Lady Antebellum sang this song on the benefit concert for the victims of the tornadoes..they did a fantastic job. 

    Also, have you heard Brad Paisley's song, "Old Alabama"?  Love the song and love it that Randy Owens actually sings on the record with Paisley.  It is a great song and a great tribute to Alabama.

    Days of the Week - Wash Day, Ironing Day, Cleaning Day

    Do you all remember growing up that everyday was a day for something?  I mean one day was wash day, one day was ironing day and there was a day for cleaning.  And, during the summer, everyday was canning day.  My Memma used to get out in that garden before it got so hot, and gather the fresh vegetables for canning and freezing.  I can see her now, bent over in the garden, bonnet on her head, apron tied around her waist, a bucket in one hand and the other hand busy picking beans – peas, green beans – squash, radishes, onions.  Lord, the list goes on and on.  Oh, let’s not forget the tomatoes.  Lord, the best tomatoes in the world are fresh from the garden.  I remember one year, (maybe fall of the year??) we even planted peanuts.  I loved helping in the garden.  When the garden started to “come in” as we Southerner’s call it, we would have fresh lettuce, radishes and green onions.  Memma used to make us a salad by taking lettuce, sliced radishes, sliced green onions including the ‘blade’ and she would fry up a batch of fat back and pour the grease over the salad.  That was to die for.  My favorite salad of all.  You have to make this salad, though when you have the fresh lettuce, onions and radishes just coming in. 

    So, yes, wash day, ironing day, cleaning day, clean the hardwood floor day, wax the darned hardwoods down on your hands and knees and during the spring, all of the mattresses and box springs went straight outside in the fresh air for a good airing out and cleaning.  Also, remember when sheets were ironed?  Dish towels were pretty, embroidered and ironed?  Pillow cases were ironed?  Oh, and let’s don’t forget those men’s  underwear were ironed.  Everything was washed in a wringer washing machine, hung outside on the clothesline to dry.  Yep, Memma used to make her own clothespin bags. 
    Those were the days, my friends, or …hmm.  Well, not sure about all of that ironing and stuff.   Both the days with Memma, those were the days, my friend.  I thought they would never end.