Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Xanthous

xan·thous
(znths)
adj.
1. Yellow.
I did not know this word, but when I looked in the dictonary and found that it is the root word for many yellow things, I was hooked.
Once upon a time I did not like yellow, now it is one of my favorite colors to use in my home. It is so cheerful and happy that I will always have something yellow or xanthous in my house.
Please stop by Jenny Matlock's http://jennymatlock.blogspot.com, for Alphabe Thursday, we are almost finished, only 2 more letters!

7 Layers of Goodness

There are recipes that are the rage....everyone makes them, they are at every party and then they fade into recipe heaven. This is one of those recipes, the 7 Layer Mexican Dip. Since hubby was watching World Cup Soccer yesterday and a friend was coming up, I thought this would be the perfect snack. It's almost like a meal
I started with this plate, it's from Mexico, how appropriate!
1st layer- refried beans, I would have cooked some pintos myself but did not have time. Notice they are fat free, I am not a fat free kinda girl but I thought since there was going to be so much fattening stuff, I could use these. Besides this was all I had in my pantry and I was NOT going to the store!
2nd layer- meat cooked with all sorts of spices, onions,and homemade tomato puree
3rd layer- grated sharp cheddar cheese, not very much, just enough to separate the layers
Hubby is my guacamole maker, he has been trying to eat avocado everyday to lower cholesterol and we had 4 that were very ripe and needed to be used, that was also the inspiration for this snack.
This Fire King bowl is one I inherited from Hubby's mom and I love it. Especially the handle that you can hold on to while mixing. Look how fast hubby is mixing!
4th layer- I almost forgot the sour cream....believe me this is not fat free, I think that stuff tastes nasty. Use the good stuff, just not as much as the recipe calls for.
5th layer- Hubby spreads the green goodness
6th layer- fresh tomatoes, I could eat these juicy bites all day long!
7th layer- A little more cheese, this time it's Monterrey Jack. I am kinda a stickler about grated cheese, I have an old hand grater that I use. I think that stuff in the plastic bag tastes like the plastic bag. Can't help it, if I need grated cheese, I do it myself, besides it's so much cheaper!
8th layer- green onion tops, for a little color and taste. I know it says it's a 7 layer dip but I put cheese in two places, I know, I always change recipes!
I put this out for the guys with chips, blue corn and yellow, and some soft drinks, not your usual ones, in fact the Barrilitios is a Mexican soda. We got them so I can use the bottles for my hummingbird feeders.
You might want to try this yummy dip, it's delicious !

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

What I Made

Remember those little black orbs of sweetness that we picked on Sunday? Well this is what I did with them. Hubby took this terrific photo of the berries in a darling little milk glass candy dish? that I won from my new friend Linda at: ljm-alacarte.blogspot.com
She has a wonderful blog and I was a winner in her giveaway, check her out!
First was blackberry crumble.....hubby can't have flour products so cobbler is a toughie for me. I like the crunchy topping with pecans and brown sugar. This stuff is addictive, a little now a little later and suddenly it's all gone.
Here's my little dish and an antique silver spoon that hubby purchased. Is that not one of those desserts you dream about?
This was my first attempt to make preserves in a long time. I got 5 pints, which is a start. I have the blackberry fever now and if I can get all this from about 2 hours picking think what I can do if I go out and pick 4 hours......
The temperature is supposed to drop below the 90's this weekend and can you guess where i will be????

Monday, June 28, 2010

Blackberry Sunday

What would cause me to awake at 6 o'clock on a Sunday? We do go to the early service at our church but we don't get up until 7 for that.
Blackberries
Those luscious, juicy bits of wonder that magically appear at our farm each year. It's not a huge farm, a little over 10 acres, but yields vast amounts of the stickeriest (I think I made that word up!) blackberry bushes I have ever encountered.
We are picking pros, get up early before it's too hot, wear loose fitting clothes so the brambles don't get your skin, gloves to protect your hands, sunscreen and insect repellent because there are ticks and chiggers, as well as a good supply of buckets.
My buddy Ruth has been picking with us before and when I called to ask if she and Paul wanted to go, she just said what time...we will be there!
Paul would discover the sweet spots, and blaze the trail for us.
Do you see how tall those plants are? You know the sweetest berries are always in the middle of the patch and you must work you way in. Hubby picked and then was so kind as to document our adventure. We stopped picking around 9:15 and then headed down to the Huddle House for breakfast. All that picking made us hungry. We got all that food that is bad for you like, pecan waffles, french toast, omelets, bacon but it was yummy. I just love to pick blackberries!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Saturday Cenus: Looks are Deceiving

Today is the 8th Saturday Cenus at Jenny Matlock's wonderful blog, jennymatlock.blogspot.com
There is a prop and you must write a short story using only 100 words. This week my hubby was asked to provide the prop, it's in bold print.I know the story behind it but I came up with my own, very original tale that I think you will enjoy.......


Looks are Deceiving
It’s the second day of summer in-service, I thought teachers were off summers! As we left, a co-worker said, “Did you notice Elizabeth in class this morning and how forlorn she seemed?" Perhaps I will write her a comforting note, I thought.
Elizabeth was a new teacher at our school and I know how overwhelming these workshops can be. I decided to write a sweet note and gather some teacher supplies, but World Cup was on and I forgot.
The next morning I sat down next to Elizabeth and started chatting. “I know this is stressful, are you doing alright, you seem so tense.” Elizabeth turned to me, her eyes twinkling, “ My husband got me a special 50th birthday present, botox treatments, and my face feels frozen.” We both laughed because looks can be deceiving!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Family

My sister and her kids are here from Alaska. My niece just graduated from culinary school in Chicago. She got a fantastic job as a pasty chef!! Then they hopped in the van and drove to Tennessee.

They are all sooo cute, this is Morgan and Spencer, Morgan is going to be a senior in high school this year. Spencer is a sophomore in college.
a whole herd of cousins
the guy in the green shirt is Noah, he is such a sweetheart and I only hope that someday they will all move a little closer so we can see them more!
My sis works very hard and has done a great job raising 5 kids as a single mom, way to go Karla!
This is Elizabeth, she is Noah's twin. She is a doll as well. We had so much fun talking and laughing and taking photos. It is so nice to see family that you haven't visited with in a while. Take a minute, think about someone in your family that you haven't spoken or seen in a while and make that call, send that e-mail, or mail that card. We need to celebrate our families, flaws in all, and realize that we need to slow down and take time to make those connections.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Wishing for Winter Weather!

I am wishing for winter weather.......you know, that time when you wear colorful sweaters, leggings, boots, mittens, and hats. I love those clothes! Look how clear and crisp the sky looks, look how cool and sparkly the ice looks hanging from the limbs.
As I have stated many times, I DO NOT like the hot! There I have said it...I do not like the skimpy clothes, my body is far from skimpy. I do not like how the minute I go outdoors my make-up melts and my hair begins to frizz. I do not like to sweat.
I like spring, it's still has a nip in the air. But brothers and sisters, this is only June and it is in the high 90's. Please give me a break......we will have hot weather until September! August is always our hottest month, my poor students fight to sit under the slides so they can be in the shade.
Notice how I am writing about the evils of summer in between these lovely photos of winter. Ah, can you feel the cold breezes blowing?
Autumn is also a favorite of mine, I love the vivid colors and the wonderful changes this season brings. going to the pumpkin patch, lighting the gas logs with a push of a button, the cool breeze.
Even my house is happier in winter, it's poor AC does not have to work itself to death! In the winter we keep the heat at 68, oh wonderful 68. I keep my AC on 73 because I could only imagine and cringe over my bill if I kept it any cooler.
How serene yards look, undisturbed and smooth. Now I can barely walk through my beds without being attacked by killer weeds. It's so hot I sure don't want to be outside pulling them up!
The only time I feel cold is when I get out of the shower, before I dry off. For just a moment in time, it's winter! But then the shower water starts to evaporate and I am brought back to reality.
I dream of the time when my fountain is frozen and not filled with green-colored water.
I wait for the time when I turn on the t.v. and the morning show says no school, it's a snow day! I am wishing for winter weather....what about you?
Check out Alphabe Thursday at: http://jennymatlock.blogspot.com/
There are so many interesting people, come on over!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Mimosa Trees

Some people do not like Mimosa Trees, they are non-native to Tennessee and grow almost like a weed.

I am the oldest of 5 children, then 2 boys, another girl, and last a boy. I would say that I was tomboy-like, I loved to cook and sew but I also like to play flashlight army and baseball in our front yard. I lived in the ideal neighborhood...You could count at least 25 kids either a year or two younger or older that lived within walking distance, and we played outside all day long in the summer.

Our next door neighbors had these Mimosa trees in their yard, lots of them in 2 or 3 rows. One day we decided to make a zip line, not like the kind you see now on all kinds of ropes courses. We had one rope as the walking line, and then waist-high were two ropes that you uses as hand rails stretched between the Mimosa trees. I remember one of my brothers trying to walk across the zip line and he started spinning round and round. It could have cut off the circulation in his legs if it got too tight.

I don't remember what happened to my brother or if I went across the zip line. I could ask my brothers but they would tell me some sort of tale that I would not know how much is true!
They are like that, stories from your youth, everyone remembers them in a different way.

When I saw these trees it reminded me of that zip line, my brothers, and how much fun we had playing all together outside in the summertime.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Fireworks

I'm like a kid in a candy store when it comes to fireworks! I just love to sit and watch them explode in the sky. We have a huge musical festival in Chattanooga called Riverbend....it used to be lots of fun but now the music is so-so and they try to sell thousands of pins and it is always soooo crowded. You get my drift, we have gone on nights that there are artists on small stages that we can get in and out without having to park and walk a mile. This year it was 95 degrees each day of Riverbend and I am not a girl that likes the hot, so we stayed home.

On Saturday night, the last night of Riverbend, there are wonderful fireworks. We went on the side of the mountain, set up our tripods, and waited. Hubby said we were at least 5 miles away.
I used my 18-200 lens and got lots of blurry, I think ugly, shots but hubby used his 50-500 lens and got these photos!
I think he did an excellent job. But next year, I am going to be closer to the fireworks and maybe even get shots of them as they sprinkle down on the "watchers".

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Laugh Out Loud!

Hubby and I watched one of the funniest movies I have seen in months!
It's Complicated

What a funny movie about people "our age". It's so refreshing to watch actors with some experience in a story that is so real. The main character, Meryl Streep, has been divorced for 10 years. Her ex-husband, Alex Baldwin, is nothing but a hoot! He is soooo funny but then he's sad as well.

In the movie, Meryl owns a wonderful bakery and has the most fantastic home and her garden is to die for! It is so rewarding to see a woman be successful. I laughed till my sides hurt........ I want to wait a bit, have a slumber party with a few girls friends, drink a little wine and watch this movie again!


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Vista Views


I just walked in the house 15 minutes ago from taking these photos of a place 5 minutes from my house.
It's called Sunset Rock and has some importance with the Civil War, I am not much into the Civil War....but the place sure is nice!
I have a thing about sunsets, I just love to watch the sun sink into the sky.
These clouds are amazing, just wish that we had some of the rain from all the thunder we heard. Someone got rain but not us! We sure could use some, it was 90 + degrees here today and I am sure that the humidity was just as high.

I am into the Ansel Adams looks, what do you think?
This might be my favorite, I could call it Silhouette of a Rotten Tree!
I do not have any trouble with heights but some of you that are a little squeamish might not be about to visit Lookout Mountain's lovely Sunset Rock.

Today is letter V at Jenny Matlock's Alphabe Thursday, stop over and read about a variety of V's!
http;//jennymatlock.blogspot.com/