Southern Honeymoon

Submitted by Christi

Okay, no more wedding pictures today (I think). If I were going to show you a wedding picture it would be of my wonderful and talented friend, Denise White, who sang The Lord’s Prayer at our wedding and also had a wonderful time singing with the Jack Mitchell Big Band at the reception. I even joined her for our signature Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy rendition, that we always sing when we get together.

Okay, the last of the Anniversary pics for now!

Today, I’m going to show you some of the fabulous honeymoon pics. Remember, that I traveled (a lot) back in the day. We travelled from Fayetteville, Arkansas to New Orleans, where we spent a couple of days, and then on to Jamaica, for a glorious 10 days and then back to New Orleans for a final three days, first class, round trip for  – $29.00 yes that is twenty-nine dollars. Thank God for frequent flier miles. I should have known all that travelling would pay off somewhere.

We stayed at Sandals – Negril. This was the view outside our door!

Sandals Negril Jamaica

Sandals Negril Jamaica

We had a sunset toast every evening.

Sandals - Negril

Sandals - Negril, Jamaica

Sandals - Negril, Jamaica

Sandals - Negril, Jamaica

Sunset in Jamaica

Sunset in Jamaica

We had a wonderful time in Jamaica. It was fun after New Orleans. We arrived in the late evening in Negril. We made our way to the nearest restaurant where we ordered some of the delicious local seafood. We requested a bottle of Chardonnay. The waiter asked us if we wanted red or white! We knew we were a long way from New Orleans, the home of some of the best food and wine in the world!

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It’s a three-for Tuesday! Join these great blogs for more recipes and great ideas.

Balancing Beauty and Bedlam’s Tasty Tuesday

Blessed with Grace’s Tempt My Tummy Tuesday

The Gypsy’s Corner’s Three or More Tuesday

Today’s Lagniappe: Creole Onion Soup
This is a wonderful recipe from Brennen’s New Orleans. It is a great soup to have in the cooler months of the year!

(8 servings)
1?2 c. (1 stick) butter
1 large onion
1?2 c. all-purpose flour
2 quarts beef stock
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 t. white pepper
Salt to taste
2 tsp. eggshade or yellow food coloring (optional)
1?4 c. freshly grated parmesan cheese

Melt the butter in a large pot, and sauté the onion until tender, about 5 minutes. Blend the flour and cook the mixture over medium heat another 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the beef stock, Worcestershire sauce, and pepper. Adjust the seasoning with salt to taste. If desired, add the food coloring. Reduce the heat and simmer until thickened, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with Parmesan, then serve.

Southern Anniversary

Submitted by Christi

Okay, it’s here! October 12th is my 12th wedding anniversary. When we were looking for places for the ceremony and reception, of course, I took pictures and after the wedding, then, I had before and after pics! I would love to share some of them with you for the wonderful Monday Metamorphosis hosted by the very talented Susan at Between Naps on the Porch.

Here is a picture of the empty chapel that I took months before the wedding. We knew the minute we entered the chapel that this was where we wanted to get married.

Thorncrown Chapel

The picture above was taken months before the wedding. We knew the minute we entered Thorncrown Chapel that this was where we wanted to be married.

Thorncrown Chapel

Thorncrown Chapel

Here is the chapel the night of the wedding. Can you see us there at the alter?

Thorncrown Chapel

Thorncrown Chapel

The chapel looks very different, although still beautiful with wonderful people in it.

Basin Park Hotel Ballroom

Basin Park Hotel Ballroom

The picture above is of the ballroom at the Basin Park Hotel. Actually, it has been completely redone since then, but this was what it looked like over 12 years ago.

Basin Park Hotel Ballroom

Basin Park Hotel Ballroom

Here is the ballroom with the Jack Mitchell Big Band. They were fabulous. The drummer is Jack Mitchell. They played all Big Band music which we just loved (that is why we chose them, after all).

Basin Park Ballroom

Basin Park Ballroom

And, of course on the other side was the table with the cakes. There were tables along the side wall with lots of food and lots of yummy champagne and punch were served by the wonderful wait staff.

The mothers

The mothers

Here is a picture of the mothers. My mother, Carrol, is on the left. My husband’s mother, Miss Iola, is in the wheelchair and the dear lady who we dubbed an “honorary mother” is Norvelle Turner. She lived with my husband’s family for nearly 45 years before her death from cancer. She loved my husband like a son; and he her like a mother. His mother died 2 months to the day after her death. Though Norvelle was Miss Iola’s housekeeper, she was loved like a member of the family, and, in fact, my husband took care of her ’til her dying day.

The happy couple

The happy couple

And, here we are, the happy couple then and the happy couple now. I am very blessed to have married this wonderful, Godly man whom I love even more now, 12 years later.

THE peace of God, which passeth all understanding,
keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God,
and of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord: And the blessing of God Almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost,
he amongst you and remain with you always.

Amen.

Today’s Lagniappe: Mint Chocolate Truffles
Okay, other than the shrimp, I don’t really remember what was served at my wedding reception. I’m sure I didn’t get around to have anything. We were too busy having the time of our lives! Anyway, there had to have been chocolate. I like this recipe and think it would be great for a wedding reception.

  • 1/3  cup  semisweet mint-chocolate morsels
  • 4  ounces  Neufchâtel cheese, softened
  • 1  (16-ounce) package powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1/4  cup  unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/4  cup  sifted powdered sugar
  • 2  tablespoons  semisweet mint-chocolate morsels

Preparation

Place 1/3 cup morsels in a medium glass bowl, and microwave at HIGH 1 minute or until morsels are almost melted, stirring until smooth. Let cool.

Add the cheese to melted morsels, and beat at medium speed of a mixer until smooth. Add 1 (16-ounce) package powdered sugar to cheese mixture; beat until well-blended.

Press mixture into a 6-inch square on heavy-duty plastic wrap, and cover with additional plastic wrap. Chill at least 1 hour.

Remove top sheet of plastic wrap; cut mixture into 48 squares. Roll each square into a ball, and place on wax paper. Roll half of balls in cocoa; roll remaining balls in 1/4 cup powdered sugar.

Place 2 tablespoons morsels in a heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag, and microwave at HIGH 1 minute or until morsels are softened. Knead bag until smooth. Snip a tiny hole in corner of bag; drizzle chocolate over balls rolled in cocoa. Serve at room temperature.

Southern Sunday Favorite

Submitted by Christi

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Sunfav

Join Chari at Happy to Design for Sunday favorites and Charlotte and Ginger at Blogger Spirit for Spiritual Sunday and enjoy your Sunday!

Philippians 4:6-7
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything,
by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving,
present your requests to God.
And the peace of God,
which transcends all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds
in Christ Jesus.”

This post was originally published on April 6th:


easteregghunt


Early this year, I wrote a post about my 2009 predictions. One of them was that with the economic down-turn, people would get back to basics. This week is a good opportunity to do just that by enjoying the beauty of Easter.

Just this past weekend, our city held an Easter egg hunt in the park. The kids had a great time and it was free. We enjoyed a Palm Sunday service and remembered how we celebrated this occasion when we were kids and we were reminded of the significance of this week in the life of the church and in our own lives individually. This is the week that led to our Savior’s death and resurrection on Easter Sunday. How blessed we are.

I hope all of you will join me in getting back to basics during this Holy week and that we will all receive the wonderful blessings of eternal life through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Here is a link that I found for how to make a cross out of a palm leaf. My husband told me how they did this when he was growing up.

Today’s Lagniappe: How to Make Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs
Just in time for decorating for Easter

  1. Place eggs in single layer in saucepan.
  2. Cover with at least one inch of cold water over tops of shells.
  3. Cover pot with lid and bring to a boil over medium heat.
  4. As soon as the water comes to a full boil, remove from heat and let stand.
  5. Large soft-cooked eggs: let stand in hot water 1 to 4 minutes, depending on your tastes.
  6. Large hard-cooked eggs: let stand in hot water 15 to 17 minutes.
  7. When cooked to desired level, drain off hot water.
  8. Immediately cover with cold water and add a few ice cubes.
  9. Soft-cooked eggs: let stand in cold water until cool enough to handle. Serve.
  10. Hard-cooked eggs: let stand in cold water until completely cooled. Use as needed.

Tips:

  1. Never boil eggs. It makes them rubbery.
  2. Use older eggs. Fresh ones won’t peel properly.
  3. To keep eggs from cracking while cooking (before placing in water), pierce large end with a needle, which will also make them easier to peel.

Southern Wedding

Submitted by Christi

For my 12th wedding anniversary, which will be next Monday, October 12th, Ive been looking back at the big occasion this past week. I’ve been hooked on my own wedding!

The rehearsal dinner was held at the beautiful (and some say haunted) Crescent Hotel

The rehearsal dinner was held at the beautiful (and some say haunted) Crescent Hotel

The wedding took place at 6 p.m. at Thorncrown Chapel in Eureka Springs, Arkansas

The wedding took place at 6 p.m. at Thorncrown Chapel in Eureka Springs, Arkansas

A beautiful place

A beautiful place

My brother Jay walked me down the aisle

My brother Jay walked me down the aisle

Jay was a wonderful brother. My daddy died of cancer in 1992 (he was 54). My brother Jay (pictured above) died in 2001. So happy to have shared this wonderful time together.

My beautiful friends, sisters and niece

My beautiful friends, sisters and niece

Starting from the left is my sister Linda, then my best friend since 7th grade Jay (who died of breast cancer in 2005), me, my wonderful and dear friend Julie and my other sister Tammy. Aren’t they all beautiful? My little niece Taylor was my sweet little flower girl. My bouquet is gardenias, white roses and stephanotis.

The reception was held at the Basin Park Hotel

The reception was held at the Basin Park Hotel

The music was provided by the Jack Mitchell Big Band. They were fabulous. My sweet and talented friend Denise, who sang at the wedding, and I joined them for our version of Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy. We met when we were both in a singing group in college and have been friends ever since.

Cutting the cake

Cutting the cake with my wonderful husband, Joe B.

The cake was delicious!

The cake was delicious!

I’ve said it before, and still say that my wedding was the most fun wedding I have ever been to! We had such a wonderful time celebrating with our friends and family. Such a blessing to have all of them with us, we were truly blessed, and we knew it. We are still very happily married and are still very blessed.

Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast,
it is not proud. It is not rude,
it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered,
it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil
but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts,
always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.

1 Corintians  13: 4-8


Today we are joining: Hooked on Fridays at Hooked on Houses and Foodie Friday at Designs by Gollum.

Today’s Lagniappe: Catfish Pecan Meuniere
Along with the beef tenderloin (see yesterday’s post), this fish was served at the rehearsal dinner.

1 cup flour
4 teaspoons creole seasoning
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup milk
4 catfish filets
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 stick butter
1 cup pecan pieces
4 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne

1. Combine the flour with 2 teaspoons of the creole seasoning in a shallow bowl. In another shollow bowl, blend the eggs and milk together. Season the fish with the remaining 2 teaspoons of creole seasoning.

2. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Dredge the fillets in the flour, coating evenly. Dip the fillets in the egg mixture. Dredge again in the flour. When the oil is hot, but not smoking, lay the fillets in the skillet. Panfry for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, or until golden. Transfer to a warm platter.

3. Discard any oil remaining in the skillet and wipe clean with paper towels. Return the skillet to the stove. Over medium-high heat, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter. When the butter foams, add the pecans and stir constantly for about 1- 1/2 minutes, or until lightly toasted. Add the parsley, garlic, lemon juice, Worcestershire, and cream. Stir with a whisk for about 15 seconds and remove from heat. Add the salt, cayenne, and remaining 6 tablespoons butter, broken into small chips, and stir until the butter melts completely.

4. Spoon the sauce over the fillets to serve.

Christi’s note: I usually cook the fish in one pan while I am making the sauce in another pan. This does mess up two pans and takes a little bit more effort with the timing but it cuts the preparation time down.

Southern Wedding China

Submitted by Christi

As I told you yesterday, next Monday, October 12th is my 12th wedding anniversary. I remember so well picking out my wedding china. My wonderful groom went with me and we picked it out together. We wanted something that was classic and would stand the test of time. We decided on Lenox Citation Gold. The crystal we chose accented it beautifully (in my opinion) and we also chose an Onieda pattern as well. I set the table on the porch with the wedding china. I didn’t have red as one of my colors, but I thought this accented the china beautifully.

Lenox China

Lenox China

I loved the cup of the coffee cup saucer

I loved the cup of the coffee cup saucer

The engagement pitcher

The engagement pitcher

I got this little cream pitcher at the site where my wonderful husband proposed. It was in the heart of the beautiful Ozark Mountains near Jasper, Arkansas, at the top of a tower.

The crystal

The crystal

The crystal candlesticks are in the same pattern as the crystal stemware

The crystal candlesticks are in the same pattern as the crystal stemware

A glass frame with a picture from our wedding reception

A glass frame with a picture from our wedding reception

I was singing along with the big band and my wonderful friend Denise White who was singing "You Made Me Love You"

I was singing along with the big band and my wonderful friend Denise White who was singing "You Made Me Love You"

Here is a closeup of the Oneida flatware

Here is a closeup of the Oneida flatware

Wonderful memories of a wonderful time

Wonderful memories of a wonderful time

Join Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for some lovely tablescapes.

Today’s Lagniappe:  Emeril’s Homemade Worcestershire Sauce
We made this for our wonderful chef at the Crescent Hotel to serve with the beef tenderloin, which was one of the choices at our rehearsal dinner. It was delicious! The other choice was Trout Meuniere.

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 cups coarsely chopped onions
  • 4 jalapenos, with stems and seeds, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
  • 4 (2-ounce) cans anchovy fillets (or an 8-ounce can), drained of oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 whole, medium lemons, skin and pith removed
  • 4 cups dark corn syrup
  • 2 cups 100 percent Pure Cane Syrup (recommended: Steen’s)
  • 2 quarts distilled white vinegar
  • 4 cups water
  • 3/4 pound fresh horseradish, peeled and grated
  • 3 pint-sized canning jars

Combine the oil, onions and jalapenos in a large stockpot over a high heat. Cook, stirring, until slightly soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic, pepper, anchovy fillets, cloves, salt, lemons, corn syrup, cane syrup, vinegar, water and horseradish and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the mixture barely coats a wooden spoon, about 6 hours. Strain into a clean container.

Worcestershire Sauce may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 month, or processed as directed below and kept for up to 1 year.

Sterilize 3 pint-sized jars and their metal lids according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Spoon the hot mixture into the jars, filling to within 1/2-inch of the rim. With a clean, damp towel, wipe the rims and fit with a hot lid. Tightly screw on the metal ring. Place, without touching, on a rack in a large, deep canning kettle or stockpot of rapidly boiling water; water should cover the cans by 1 inch. Boil and process for 15 minutes. Using tongs, remove the jars, place on a towel and let cool completely before storing. Test the seals and tighten the rings as needed. Store in a cool, dark place for at least 2 weeks before using. After opening, store jars in the refrigerator.

Yield: 3 pints

Southern Reds

Submitted by Christi

So many wonderful red things to see these days. This past Saturday, there was a hot air balloon event on the local campus of ASU (Arkansas State University, Mountain Home).

Up, up and away!

Up, up and away!

Glowingly happy face against the night sky

Glowingly happy face against the night sky

A lot of people are decorating with fall mums. I love the red ones with the yellow centers.

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Red mums

The pyracantha (fire thorn) berries are turning red.

pyracantha

My neighbor’s red gazing ball and red geraniums.

Red gazing ball

Red gazing ball

Sometimes in the fall it looks like the world is on fire!

Starting tomorrow will be a special time. Next Monday is my 12th wedding anniversary and I will start the celebration with a table setting with my wedding china and will continue looking back with recipes of dishes served at the rehearsal dinner, the wedding reception and even some from the honeymoon! Hope you will join me for my special trip down memory lane.

A little outdoor red for Outdoor Wednesday with A Southern Daydreamer and Rednesday! with It’s a Very Cherry and today’s lagniappe is a great idea for Crockpot Wedneday with Dining with Debbie.

By the way, you may have noticed that I have added a some ads to A Southern Life. In this economy, we can use all the help we can get. If you are planning to order from any of the sponsored ads, I would greatly appreciate it if you would consider going through A Southern Life to get to the sites that are posted. If you order from sites that are not posted and I can possibly post them from this site, let me know what they are and I’ll see what I can do. Thanks so much for all of you who visit and enjoy this site. I hope you will understand the need for the ads and, if you can, will contribute to the cause!

Today’s Lagniappe: Crockpot Red Beans and Rice
Even something red to eat and man is it yummy!

1 lb. red kidney beans
1 ham bone (with meat) or 4 ham hocks
1 bay leaf
1 tsp. cayenne (more to taste)
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 lg. stalk celery, chopped
1 lg. onion, chopped
2 tsp. sugar
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cumin
Rice, cooked
Fresh chopped parsley

Wash beans in cold water and pick out rocks and bad beans. Cook in 3 quarts of water in large pot for 1 hour or in crock pot for 2 hours. Add all other ingredients (except rice) and cook for 2 or 3 hours in crock pot or 1 1/2 to 2 hours on top of stove. To serve, put beans in bowl and cover with hot rice.

Southern Quick Bits

Submitted by Christi

Yesterday afternoon, I was expecting a visitor for a quick business meeting. Of course, as a Southerner, you can’t have anyone cross your threshold without offering at least a drink and preferable something to drink with a bite to eat.  Since I had less than an hour and didn’t have time to go to the store, I had to find something quick and easy to make with what I had on hand. As it happened, I had a can of apple pie filling sweetened with Splenda and some biscuit mix. I found this recipe and substituted my canned apples for fresh (I actually have some fresh apples, but didn’t have the time).

French Apple Pie

French Apple Pie

French Apple Pie

Filling
3 cups sliced peeled apples (3 large)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup Bisquick
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, softened
2 eggs

Streusel
1/2 cup Bisquick
1/4 cup chopped nuts
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons firm butter or margarine
1. Heat oven to 325ºF. Grease 9-inch glass pie plate. In medium bowl, mix apples, cinnamon and nutmeg; place in pie plate.
2. In medium bowl, stir remaining filling ingredients until well blended. Pour over apple mixture in pie plate. In small bowl, mix all streusel ingredients until crumbly; sprinkle over filling.
3. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes. Store in refrigerator.
High Altitude (3500-6500 ft): Heat oven to 375ºF.

Monster Eyes

Monster Eyes

While I was looking for recipes, I came across this picture on Southern Living that I thought was so cute and, of course, I have given you a recipe for the sausage cheese balls before, so all you have to do to this is add the olive before you bake. If you aren’t going for the eyeball look, you could always wrap the olive in the sausage ball mixture and bake. Here is the sausage ball recipe that I have posted before.

Sausage Cheese Balls

2 cups Bisquick
1 pound hot sausage
1-1/2 cup medium or sharp cheddar cheese, grated

Mix all ingredients in a bowl with your hands. Roll mixture into balls a little smaller than a golf ball. Place on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F. for about 20 minutes.

Christi’s note: I like to add garlic powder, a couple of splashes of Worcestershire sauce, a dash of cayenne and sometimes a little dried parsley to this mixture.

That recipe would be another quick easy bite for impromptu visitors. By the way, go over to the Southern Living site and check out their really cute and yummy looking Halloween appetizers.

Okay, one more easy appetizer. I mean, you know, you never know when someone might drop by.

Olive Feta Pinwheels

1    can (8 oz)  refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
2    tablespoons cream cheese spread (from 8-oz container)
1/4    cup crumbled feta cheese (1 oz)
1/4    cup chopped pitted kalamata olives
2    tablespoons chopped fresh oregano or parsley

1.    Heat oven to 350°F. Spray cookie sheet with cooking spray.
2.    Unroll dough; separate into 2 long rectangles. Press each into 12×4-inch rectangle, firmly pressing perforations     to seal.
3.    Spread 1 tablespoon cream cheese spread over each rectangle. Sprinkle evenly with feta cheese, olives and oregano.
4.    Starting with one short side, roll up each rectangle. With serrated knife, cut each roll into 8 slices; place cut side down on cookie sheet.
5.    Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet. Serve warm.

There you have it 3 quick and easy things to whip up when you have someone dropping by on short notice and you want to show them a little of your Southern hospitality (whether you live or are from the South or not)! 🙂

Today’s Lagniappe: Pumpkin Fritters
Miss Joan on the What’s for Supper board at SL posted this recipe and I thought it sounded so yummy!

4 cups mashed cooked pumpkin
2 eggs
1 cup flour
Salt
1 tsp. baking powder
2 Tbs. sugar
Oil

Combine pumpkin, eggs, flour, and salt to taste, baking powder and sugar, making a soft batter.

Fry spoonfuls in shallow oil until both sides are lightly browned. Drain on paper towels. Serve warm with cinnamon-sugar or caramel sauce, if desired.

Serves 4-6


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It’s a three-for Tuesday! Join these great blogs for more recipes and great ideas.

Balancing Beauty and Bedlam’s Tasty Tuesday

Blessed with Grace’s Tempt My Tummy Tuesday

The Gypsy’s Corner’s Three or More Tuesday

Southern Gifts

Submitted by Christi

liqueur

It’s the time of year to start thinking about transforming simple ingredients into fabulous Christmas gifts. Start making your  homemade liqueurs now and they will have a wonderfully delicious flavor by the holidays.

So, what do you need to make your own liqueurs? A few simple ingredients, some jars and some pretty bottles. You can use pretty glass water bottles, wine bottles or whatever pretty bottles you can find. Be sure to sterilize your bottles and jars with boiling water before using them.

Okay, here are a couple of recipes:

Coffee Liqueur
1 (2 ounce) jar instant espresso coffee powder
3 1/2 cups white sugar
2 cups boiling water
1 pint vodka
1 whole vanilla bean
Mix coffee and sugar. Add boiling water and stir until dissolved. Cool.
Add Vodka and pour into two 26 ounce empty bottles. Split vanilla into 4 pieces and add to bottles.
Close bottles tightly and keep in a cool dark place for one month.

Fall Spice Cordial

1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 1/4 cups apple juice
1 tsp real vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp dried, chopped orange peel
1 cup white brandy
1/2 cup 100 proof vodka

Bring brown sugar, white sugar and apple juice to a boil over medium-high heat. Add cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, allspice and orange peel. Boil for 4 minutes and remove from heat. Let stand until just warm. Transfer to a clean 1 qt aging vessel. Add vanilla, brandy and vodka. Cover tightly and let stand for 1-4 weeks. Filter out solids before bottling.

Almond Liqueur (like Amaretto)

1 cup water
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 cups vodka
2 tablespoons almond extract
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Combine water and sugars in a saucepan over medium heat. Heat until the mixture is boiling, and all of the sugar is dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat and let the mixture cool for 10 minutes.
Stir vodka, almond extract and vanilla extract into the mixture. Store in a sealed bottle.

bottles

Put these homemade liqueurs in pretty bottles. Tie them with a decorative ribbon and give for a welcome gift.

met monday

So, we changed some simple ingredients into gifts for the holidays. Y’all go over and visit Susan for Met Monday and see what everyone else is up to!


Today’s Lagniappe: White Russian
This is a yummy drink that can be made with the coffee liqueur.

1 part vodka
1 part coffee liqueur
1 part cream

Place all the ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake until combined and cold. Serve in a chilled highball glass.

Southern Sunday Favorite

Submitted by Christi

bloggerspiritsidebar

Sunfav

Join Chari at Happy to Design for Sunday favorites and Charlotte and Ginger at Blogger Spirit for Spiritual Sunday and enjoy your Sunday!

Now that Autumn has arrived, I’m reminded, yet again, that “to everything there is a season.” This post is from April 24, 2009. I was putting in my garden for the summer:

Genesis 1: 11-13

“Then God said, ‘Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.’ And it was so. The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening, and there was morning – the third day.”

garden-hoe

This is the weekend I put in my garden – starting today. I’ve planted my seeds, tended the seedlings, transferred them into bigger pots and now, I’m ready for the real deal.

I will be tilling the plot, getting rid of the grass and weeds, amending the soil, making rows, then TA DA!!!, planting the vegetables and flowers. This is a pretty labor intensive way to save money, but, it is a labor of love. And, it is well worth it.

Nothing tastes better than home-grown vegetables that you have tended with your own hands. Not only do I get to have yummy veggies and lovely flowers, I get to have the pleasure of accomplishment, the gratitude for the blessing of the earth and a connection to generations and generations going back forever who have planted seeds to grow food and flowers for their homes.

Here is some gardening wisdom from Mary Anne Potter of Herban Renewal Farms of Ponca City, Oklahoma. She is an herbal gardener who wrote a lovely book called Herbal Pleasures. Her words of gardening wisdom are wise words for life as well.

Gardening Wisdom

1. Begin early. But it’s never too late to start.

2. If it doesn’t work, try something else.

3. Life is fragile. Protect it.

4. Life is enduring. Trust it.

5. Life is daily. Water it. Weed it. Prune it.

6. Life is indescribably beautiful. Enjoy it and say thank you.

7. Growth takes time. Be patient. And While you are waiting, pull a weed.

8. There’s something for everybody – different blooms for different rooms.

9. Pruning hurts. Pruning helps you grow.

10. Recycle. Reuse. Restore. Repair. Reduce. Redo.

11. Sometimes the tiniest flowers smell the sweetest.

12. To everything there is a season.

13. Dream big. But try not to let your joy turn into drudgery.

14. Grow what you love. the love will keep it growing.

15. Remember, never kiss by the garden gate. Love is blind, but the neighbors ain’t.

Isn’t that lovely? My mother gave me this lovely little book. Okay, off to the garden. I’ll take pics to show y’all next week.

Have a wonderful and blessed weekend!

Today’s Lagniappe: Garden Veggie Quiche

* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 cup sliced mushrooms
* 1/2 med. zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced
* 1/2 small onion, diced
* 1/4 cup red bell pepper, diced
* 1/3 cup shredded carrots
* 2 cloves garlic, crushed
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 5 eggs
* 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
* 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
* 1 9-inch pie crust

1. Heat olive oil in medium size pan.
2. Add veggies, garlic, and salt and saute until soft.
3. While veggies are cooling a little, mix together eggs, ricotta, and Parmesan until fully combined.
4. Stir veggies into egg mixture and pour into pie shell.
5. Cook at 350 for 25-30 minutes.

Southern Sweeties

Submitted by Christi

Yes, I’m hooked. I love my pets. I love other peoples pets. I’m hooked on my sweeties.

Bailey is my sweet dog. We got him from a shelter when he was 2 years old. It was his second time in a shelter in his short 2 years. We have had him for almost five years now. You may notice one of his eyes has a strange glow. That is from a cataract that was caused by his eye being poked and injured in his first two rough years.

Princess Grace Calli Cat (Calli for short) appeared from nowhere and was living under our house. She is a beautiful long-haired calico cat. She was spayed and her front paws had been de-clawed. I put a notice on our local radio station a couple of times and asked all around the neighborhood. Nobody ever showed up to claim her. She is ours now and is a joy. She was emaciated when she came to us and we had to feed her with a syringe for a good while. She finally snapped out of her funk when my husband gave her a bath. She started eating on her own and is now quite sassy. She has been with us for two years.

My sweet Llasa Apso - Bailey

My sweet Lhasa Apso - Bailey

Bailey - freshly groomed

Bailey - freshly groomed

Isn't she pretty?

Isn't Miss Calli pretty?

Sometimes she is camera shy

Sometimes she is camera shy

Bailey is laying on his towel. He is worn out after his bath.

Bailey is laying on his towel. He is worn out after his bath.

My sweeties

My sweeties

Of course, I have that other sweetie too. My husband! He is the tallest sweetie in the house!

Today’s Lagniappe:  Baked Acorn Squash
It even makes its own little bowel!

  • 2 acorn squash, sliced in 1/2, seeds removed
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Salt
  • 2 tablespoons  sugar

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Assemble acorn squash on a baking sheet. Place 1 tablespoon of butter and brown sugar in each half. Add 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg in each and season with salt. Bake until golden and tender, about 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes, basting flesh of squash several times.

Twenty minutes before the squash is done, sprinkle edges with sugar. Serve squash warm.

Today we are joining: Hooked on Fridays at Hooked on Houses and Foodie Friday at Designs by Gollum.