Southern Wild Turkeys

Submitted by Christi

When we lived out by the lake, every now and then, we would see a beautiful wild turkey pass by our house. Now that we live in town, we don’t see much of the wild turkeys.  I miss that. Turkeys are fascinating to watch. The males “strut” for the females with their feathers puffed out, looking very handsome.

Isn't he handsome?

Isn't he handsome?

How about this beauty? Don't you love that red neck?

How about this beauty? Don't you love that red neck?

Here are some "rednecks" sizing up the competition (Ha, ha)!

Here are some "rednecks" sizing up the competition (Ha, ha)!

Beautifu colors

Beautiful colors

This guy seems to be saying "who me?"

This guy seems to be saying "who me?"

As you may have guessed, I’m not much into hunting. I guess I wouldn’t be a good farm girl. I love eating turkey, but I don’t want to have anything to do with the getting them to the grocery store!

Benjamin Franklin preferred the turkey as the national bird over the bald eagle. From wikipedia:

The idea that Benjamin Franklin preferred the Turkey as the national bird of the United States comes from a letter he wrote to his daughter, Sarah Bache on January 26, 1784 criticizing the choice of the Bald Eagle as the national bird and suggesting that a Turkey would have made a better alternative.

For my own part I wish the Bald Eagle had not been chosen the Representative of our Country. He is a Bird of bad moral character. He does not get his Living honestly. You may have seen him perched on some dead Tree near the River, where, too lazy to fish for himself, he watches the Labour of the Fishing Hawk; and when that diligent Bird has at length taken a Fish, and is bearing it to his Nest for the Support of his Mate and young Ones, the Bald Eagle pursues him and takes it from him.

With all this Injustice, he is never in good Case but like those among Men who live by Sharping & Robbing he is generally poor and often very lousy. Besides he is a rank Coward: The little King Bird not bigger than a Sparrow attacks him boldly and drives him out of the District. He is therefore by no means a proper Emblem for the brave and honest Cincinnati of America who have driven all the King birds from our Country…

I am on this account not displeased that the Figure is not known as a Bald Eagle, but looks more like a Turkey. For the Truth the Turkey is in Comparison a much more respectable Bird, and withal a true original Native of America… He is besides, though a little vain & silly, a Bird of Courage, and would not hesitate to attack a Grenadier of the British Guards who should presume to invade his Farm Yard with a red Coat on.

This letter to Franklin’s daughter was written after Congress spent six years choosing the eagle as the emblem of the newly formed country. Franklin’s disapproval with the choice of the Bald Eagle appears evident but may have been ironical, it is not apparent that he ever officially advocated for the turkey.

Actually, I think Mr. Franklin makes a pretty good case for the turkey. Maybe he should have officially advocated for the majestic bird!

Also, we can’t let the day pass without saying:

Happy Birthday Marine Corps!


And . . .

Happy Veteran’s Day


Don’t forget to click on the Valour IT link (on the left) to help out our wounded troops with technology that helps them heal. The Valour IT Project fundraiser will end on Veteran’s Day, November 11.

Today’s Lagniappe: Turkey x 3
A couple of Thanksgiving cocktails made with, what else, Wild Turkey and a crockpot turkey recipe.

Thanksgiving Cocktail

* 1 1/2 oz Wild Turkey
* 1/2 oz Applejack
* 1 tsp Rose’s sweetened lime juice
* 4 oz Cranberry juice

Mixing instructions:

Fill Collins glass one-half full of ice, add ingredients and stir. Garnish with a lime wedge, if desired.

Turkey Trot

* 2 cups Cranberry juice
* 2 cups 7-Up
* 1 cup Wild Turkey

Mixing instructions:

Mix with a stirrer in a pitcher then pour over ice into glasses.

Crockpot Turkey with Garlic

* 1 1/2 pounds boneless turkey thighs, skin removed
* salt and pepper or lemon pepper to taste
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 6 cloves garlic, left whole
* 1/2 cup dry white wine
* 1/2 cup chicken broth
* 1 tablespoon chopped parsley

Season turkey with salt and pepper or lemon pepper. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Add turkey thighs; brown for about 10 minutes.

Place turkey in slow cooker; add remaining ingredients. Cook on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours, or until turkey thighs are cooked through. Remove garlic cloves from pot. Mash a few and return to the slow cooker, if desired. Serve turkey with juices.

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.

All photos via Flickr!
Steve Voght

Southern Thanksgiving Inventory

Submitted by Christi

As I have mentioned in previous posts, my family is coming here for Thanksgiving. I have not hosted Thanksgiving since 2000. Our circumstances have significantly changed since then but, what hasn’t changed is the love we have for our family. We have less now, but, we are even more thankful for what we do have. That may be a bit of metamorphosis in itself. It is not that we were not thankful before, we are just more thankful now for everything!

In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
I Thessalonians 5:18

Metamorphosis Monday

Metamorphosis Monday with Between Naps on the Porch

Last week, I showed you the cute little Thanksgiving turkey made from a pinecone and an acorn for Metamorphosis Monday.

Pinecone Turkey

Pinecone Turkey

Today, I started taking inventory of what I have on hand to decorate for Thanksgiving. In the next couple of weeks, I will be really gearing up and transforming the entire house to welcome my family for Thanksgiving. I am really looking forward to seeing everyone. This metamorphosis will be ongoing. This week, it will start with seeing what I have to begin with.

Some of the things are general fall decorations and some are more geared to just Thanksgiving. You have seen a lot of the fall things already.

Some of the things that are general fall decorations include:

Lots of pumpkins

Lots of pumpkins

More pumpkins and some faux fall foliage.

More pumpkins and some faux fall foliage.

Then there are the Thanksgiving type things:

I love these little pilgrams

I love these little pilgrims

The Thanksgiving turkeys (the smaller ones are candle holders)

The Thanksgiving turkeys (the smaller ones are candle holders)

A cornucopia and even more pumpkins (can you tell which one has been sitting in a plant?)

A cornucopia and even more pumpkins (can you tell which one has been sitting in a plant?)

And then there are a couple more items:

Lots of these fall picks

Lots of these fall picks

Look at this tree outside the front window! No hope that it will last as long as Thanksgiving but itsn't it beautiful?

Look at this tree outside the front window! No hope that it will last as long as Thanksgiving but itsn't it beautiful?

Okay, that is part of what I’ve got to work with. Stay tuned these next couple of weeks to see what happens.

By the way, this coming Wednesday is Veteran’s Day! Don’t forget to see what you can do for Project Valour IT or for our brave men and women who were injured at Fort Hood this week.

Soldiers’ Angels is assessing the needs and with our founder currently residing in Texas, we will be standing by to offer physical and emotional support to our heroes and their families.

RIGHT NOW: Collecting encouraging cards and NEW stuffed animals for the families and children of the injured/killed. Please send cards and stuffed animals (and anything NEW that may brighten the life of a child) to:
Soldiers’ Angels
4408 PanAm Expressway
San Antonio, TX 78218

A Valour IT Update: Project Valour IT, so far, has raised over $72,000 to help wounded soldiers with technology to help them heal!

Project Valour IT is still going on (through November 11). Many of our military who are wounded receive comfort by way of technology. The Valour IT project is a fund raising effort to help provide the purchase and shipment of laptops and other technology for severely wounded service members. If you would like to donate to the help and comfort of our military, please go to the Wharton blog and click on the Valour IT link on the top right.

How else can you help? Join the effort yourself by posting about this on your blog. Help us get the word out. This fund raising effort runs from October 26 through Veterans Day, November 11!

Today’s Lagniappe: Caramel Corn
An easy, tasty snack for Thanksgiving munchies

* 7 quarts plain popped popcorn
* 2 cups dry roasted peanuts (optional)
* 2 cups brown sugar
* 1/2 cup light corn syrup
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 cup margarine
* 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Place the popped popcorn into two shallow greased baking pans. You may use roasting pans, jelly roll pans, or disposable roasting pans. Add the peanuts to the popped corn if using. Set aside.
2. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C). Combine the brown sugar, corn syrup, margarine and salt in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring enough to blend. Once the mixture begins to boil, boil for 5 minutes while stirring constantly.
3. Remove from the heat, and stir in the baking soda and vanilla. The mixture will be light and foamy. Immediately pour over the popcorn in the pans, and stir to coat. Don’t worry too much at this point about getting all of the corn coated.
4. Bake for 1 hour, removing the pans, and giving them each a good stir every 15 minutes. Line the counter top with waxed paper. Dump the corn out onto the waxed paper and separate the pieces. Allow to cool completely, then store in airtight containers or resealable bags.

Southern November

Submitted by Christi

A quick item before the regularly scheduled post:

Are you wondering what to do with all that LEFTOVER Halloween candy? ANSWER! Soldiers’ Angels will ship it to the troops for you

After Halloween has come and gone: the costumes are put away, the kids have come down from the sugar high, the jack-o-lantern is starting to wilt… and there are still pounds and pounds of candy all over the place! What to do?

Our military men and women deployed around the world always enjoy candy in their care packages, and this is the perfect time of year for shipping chocolate–the cooler weather means it’s less likely to melt! Patriotic kids and parents can send extra Halloween candy to Soldiers’ Angels, who will make sure it brightens the day of a service member far from home.

Soldiers’ Angels asks all Angels to spread the word and get their community involved in sharing their Halloween candy to give our troops a taste of home.

If you live east of the Mississippi, please ship your Halloween candy to:

Soldiers’ Angels
112 Greenhill Road
Ramseur NC 27316

(Dropoff avail. M-F, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

If you live west of the Mississippi, please ship your Halloween candy to:

Soldiers’ Angels
914 Tourmaline Dr
Newbury Park, CA 91320

Isn’t that a great idea to help our troops?! Even if you gave away all your candy, your kids may want to share theirs or, you may want to got get some that is marked down after Halloween is over to share. Whatever way you choose, it is a great idea!

Okay, back to our regularly scheduled post:

How do you turn a pinecone into a turkey?

Metamorphosis Monday

Metamorphosis Monday with Between Naps on the Porch

This year, I have the blessing of having my family come to my home for Thanksgiving. It has been nine years since I had it last and I am looking forward to having it again. I always love the holidays. When the days get short, it is so great to have so many wonderful celebrations to enjoy!

My husband’s Aunt, Robbie Holt, showed me the cutest little pinecone turkeys that she had made and I decided last time I had Thanksgiving to make some myself for each guest place setting at the table. I had fun gathering the pine cones and acorns to make the turkeys. The pics I have of the turkeys now are missing the cute little acorn hat.

Mr. Pinecone Turkey

Mr. Pinecone Turkey

He's ready for his closeup.

He's ready for his closeup.

What a cutie.

What a cutie.

These were easy to make and added a fun touch to the Thanksgiving table. You can find instructions for making your own here. These instructions actually use real feathers but as you can see, I just made one big fan. It would be a fun craft too if you have kids to help you with it.

I’ll be sharing lots of Thanksgiving prepartations with you in the coming weeks. Today, I’ve spent outside cleaning out the garage (ugh!). Oh well, it must be done and making turkeys is the fun part that will follow!

Reminder: Project Valour IT is still going on (through November 11). Many of our military who are wounded receive comfort by way of technology. The Valour IT project is a fund raising  effort to help provide the purchase and shipment of laptops and other technology for severely wounded service members. If you would like to donate to the help and comfort of our military, please go to the Wharton blog and click on the Valour IT link on the top right.

How else can you help? Join the effort yourself by posting about this on your blog. Help us get the word out. This fund raising effort runs from October 26 through Veterans Day, November 11!

Other needs you can help with:

One-time Care Packages
We have nearly 2,000 heroes waiting to be adopted!  Would you consider sending a one-time package to help in the interim while we work on getting these soldiers adopted? If you are able to help us with this request, please send an email to

Adopt a Military Family for Christmas
As the holiday season is just around the corner, we are starting our Operation Outreach for the holidays.  This program involves adopting a military family for Christmas.  If you would like to help make a military family’s Christmas a bit brighter, please send an email to

Sweats for Military Hospitals
All Combat Support Hospitals and military hospitals are in need of SWEATS.  Sizes needed are Medium to XXL with tan or olive drab for the Marines and tan or black for the Army.
If you would like to help with this request, please send an email to or if you would prefer to send a monetary donation or a gift card, please send to:

Soldiers’ Angels
1792 E. Washington Blvd.
Pasadena, CA  91104

Today’s Lagniappe:  Easy Chicken Enchiladas
Something yummy to start out November.

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves – boiled and shredded
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 (7 ounce) can chopped green chile peppers
  • 1 (1 ounce) package taco seasoning mix
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 cups cottage cheese
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pinch ground black pepper
  • 12 (6 inch) corn tortillas
  • 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 (10 ounce) can red enchilada sauce
  • To Make Meat Mixture: Heat oil in medium skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken, onion and green chile peppers and saute until browned, then add taco seasoning and prepare meat mixture according to package directions.

  • To Make Cheese Mixture: In a medium bowl mix sour cream with cottage cheese and season with salt and pepper; stir until well blended.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • To Assemble Enchiladas: Heat tortillas until soft. In each tortilla place a spoonful of meat mixture, a spoonful of cheese mixture and a bit of shredded cheese. Roll tortillas and place in a lightly greased 9×13 inch baking dish. Top with any remaining meat and cheese mixture, enchilada sauce and remaining shredded cheese.
  • Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Southern Monday

Submitted by Christi

What a great holiday weekend! A wonderful celebration of our nation’s independence. I had a wonderful weekend. I really enjoyed planning for this celebration.

In celebration, I transformed my outdoor table from this:


to this:


With the addition of a few flags, some red and blue twizzle sticks and a red, white and blue ribbon, this table was transferred from a garden party table to a festive, patriotic party table.

I love this idea and can see mums and pumpkins for Fall and lots of other ideas.

This past weekend, we also indulged in delicious Bluebell Strawberry and Homemade Vanilla ice cream. Bluebell Ice Cream (from Texas) is really, really yummy! Now it has been a few years since I lived in Texas, but, as I recall the slogan was, “We eat all we can and we sell the rest!” Who doesn’t love that? We rarely indulge in ice cream and even when we do it is usually the no-sugar variety. This was a wonderful, delicious indulgence!


Hope everyone has a great Monday!


Visit Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday and Smiling Sally for Blue Mondays. You will find wonderful and talented women with fantastic posts!

Hope everyone has a wonderful week starting with a fantastic Monday!

Today’s Lagniappe:  Blueberry Coffee Cake

2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. grated lemon peel
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup milk
2 eggs slightly beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. almond extract
3-5 tsp. milk

Heat oven to 375. Grease a 13×9 inch pan. In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and lemon peel. Using pastry blender or fork, cut in butter. Add milk, eggs and vanilla. Stir well. Pour 3/4 batter into greased pan.

Top with blueberries. Spoon remaining batter over blueberries. Bake for 35 minutes. Cool 30 minutes. In small bowl , blend icing ingredients. Drizzle over warm cake.

Southern 4th of July

Submitted by Christi

Happy Independence Day!

Wishing all of you a happy and safe 4th of July. Please take a moment to read the Declaration of Independence.

Of all of the text of this document one of my favorite lines is, “And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”

The courage of our founding fathers is evident in those words. They risked death to declare our independence. When Benjamin Franklin was asked, “Well, Doctor, what have we got – a Republic or a Monarchy?” He replied, “A Republic, if you can keep it.”* It’s up to us to keep it!

Here is the text of the Declaration of Independence:

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

John Hancock

New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry

Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott

New York:
William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris

New Jersey:
Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark

Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross

Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean

Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton

George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton

North Carolina:
William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn

South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton

Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

* ATTRIBUTION: The response is attributed to BENJAMIN FRANKLIN—at the close of the Constitutional Convention of 1787, when queried as he left Independence Hall on the final day of deliberation—in the notes of Dr. James McHenry, one of Maryland’s delegates to the Convention.

Southern 4th of July Tablescape

Submitted by Christi

After enjoying the Red, White and Blue Festival last week, my husband and I plan to have a quiet weekend at home this 4th of July. There are fireworks shows on both of the lakes (Bull Shoals and Norfork). We might venture out to see the show but otherwise we will be close to home.

However, being home doesn’t mean you can’t be festive!

A 4th of July table for 2.

A 4th of July table for 2.

You may remember this plant hanging from the shepherds hook in a previous post. Today, I've dressed it up for the holiday.

You may remember this plant hanging from the shepherds hook in a previous post. Today, I've dressed it up for the holiday.

Remember this from Monday? I added a silver charger and a red candle.

Remember this from Monday? I added a silver charger and a red candle.

Even the birds got in on the act with their Uncle Sam hats.

Even the birds got in on the act with their Uncle Sam hats.

A silver charger, white plate, red napkin and Spode Blue Fitzgerald plate on top make up the layers.

A silver charger, white plate, red napkin and Spode Blue Fitzgerald plate on top make up the layers.

Red cut glass goblets and two-toned flatware finish the setting.

Red cut glass goblets and two-toned flatware finish the setting.

A little fluted white bowl with blue trim for dessert.

A little fluted white bowl with blue trim for dessert.

Isn't he handsome?

Isn't he handsome?

We're ready to eat!

We're ready to eat!

Thanks for stopping by. Hope you enjoyed your visit. You can find lots and lots of great tablescapes by lots of great people over at Between Naps on the Porch.


Today’s Lagniappe:  Arkansas Sin
Who can resist this?

  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 4 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 8 ounces diced cooked ham
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 (1 pound) loaf round sourdough bread
  • 1 cup buttery crackers

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the cream cheese, Cheddar cheese, ham, onions and jalapeno peppers. Cut a circle out of the top of the bread, and remove the center leaving a 1 inch shell of bread. Fill bread with the cheese mixture.
  3. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven, until the dip is heated through. Serve with crackers for a wonderful taste experience!

Southern Festival

Submitted by Christi

This past weekend was the Red, White and Blue Festival here. What better thing to post this week for Outdoor Wednesday?

It was really hot so we had a fire truck that sprayed us to help cool us off.

It was really hot so we had a fire truck that sprayed us to help cool us off.

There were lots of free activities for kids.

There were lots of free activities for kids.

If you couldn't dunk 'em with a baseball, there is another way!

If you couldn't dunk 'em with a baseball, there is another way!

Kids had a great time.

Kids had a great time.

There were bands.

There were bands.

And then the fireworks!

And then the fireworks!

There were Civil War re-enactors there that shot off a cannon every hour, on the hour beginning at 5 p.m. Once it got dark, a choral group sang The National Anthem and then the cannon was shot and immediately the fireworks started. They were choreographed by computer to music. It was spectacular and everyone had a fabulous time!

Wish you could have all been there!


Today’s Lagniappe:  Independence Day Trifle

  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond flavoring
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 pint whipping cream
  • 1 angel food cake (store bought is fine)
  • 1 quart strawberry
  • 1 quart blueberries
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons almond flavoringDirectionsCream together cream cheese and confectioners sugar.
    Add sour cream, vanilla and 1/4 tsp almond flavoring.
    Set this mixture aside.
    In separate bowl whip the whipping cream and add to cream cheese mixture.
    Tear up angel food cake and mix in with cheese mixture.In separate bowl place strawberries and blueberries 3/4 cup sugar and 3 Tbsp almond flavoring.
    (You can mix the berries together or keep separate, for a pretty red, white and blue look,if separate divide sugar and almond flavoring between the two bowls).
    In a clear glass bowl alternate layers of the cream cheese mixtures and the berries.
    Garnish the top with berries.
    Refrigerate for a couple of hours.


Southern Memorial Day

Submitted by Christi


This is my first time joining the Blue Monday posts at Smiling Sally’s. Can’t wait to see what everybody is doing this Monday.

In honor of Memorial Day, today, I am posting Navy Blue.


Specifically U. S. Navy blue.

I want to tell you about my father-in-law, Dr. Joe B. Wharton Jr. Dr. Joe B., as he was known, was a Navy doctor during World War II. He served in the South Pacific. One of our treasures is the letters that he and my mother-in-law, Iola Holt Wharton, exchanged during his service in the South Pacific.

During Dr. Joe B.’s service, John F. Kennedy was injured on PT109. Dr. Joe B. was the doctor who attended him. John F. Kennedy and Dr. Joe B. had become friends before Mr. Kennedy’s injury and continued corresponding for many years after the war.

In 1961 The Saturday Evening Post wrote an article about John F. Kennedy’s adventures during the war. They ran the picture below.


Below is the full picture.


That is Dr. Joe B. on the left with John F. Kennedy. The dog had been adopted by JFK and the cat had been adopted by Dr. Joe B. As you can see, they were holding the pet that belonged to the other in the picture. The Saturday Evening Post contacted Dr. Joe B. for permission to use the picture with him in it. At that time, Dr. Wharton had a busy medical practice in El Dorado, Arkansas and never got around to getting back to them with permission to run the picture with him. They cropped him out and ran the picture without him.

There are several letters of correspondence between Dr. Joe B. and JFK during JFK’s presidency. These are archieved at the JFK Presidential Library.

On Memorial Day, we remember. This is just a small story from World War II that I wanted to share with you.

Hope you are all having a wonderful Memorial Day. Don’t forget to take time to honor those who have and continue to keep us safe!

Today’s Lagniappe: Red, White and Blue Salad

* 1 package (3 ounces) berry blue gelatin
* 2 cups boiling water, divided
* 2-1/2 cups cold water, divided
* 1 cup fresh blueberries
* 1 envelope unflavored gelatin
* 1 cup heavy whipping cream
* 6 tablespoons sugar
* 2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1 package (3 ounces) raspberry gelatin
* 1 cup fresh raspberries
* Whipped topping and additional berries, optional

In a large bowl, dissolve berry blue gelatin in 1 cup boiling water; stir in 1 cup cold water. Add blueberries. Pour into a 3-qt. serving bowl. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, in a saucepan, sprinkle unflavored gelatin over 1/2 cup cold water; let stand for 1 minute. Add the cream and sugar; cook and stir over low heat until gelatin and sugar are completely dissolved. cool to room temperature. Whisk in sour cream and vanilla. Spoon over the blue layer. Refrigerate until firm.
In a large bowl, dissolve raspberry gelatin in remaining hot water; stir in remaining cold water. Add raspberries. Spoon over cream layer. Chill until set. Garnish with whipped topping and additional berries if desired. Yield: 14-16 servings.

Southern Good Friday

Submitted by Christi


For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16

The past few weeks, Friday’s meant Frugal Friday’s around here but today is Good Friday. I want to wish all of you a happy and blessed Easter and thank you for sharing part of your day with me and my ramblings here at A Southern Life.

Today’s Lagniappe:  Hot Cross Buns
Something yummy to have on Good Friday morning. In many historically Christian countries, buns are traditionally eaten on Good Friday, with the cross standing as a symbol of the crucifixion. Take some to your friends and neighbors as a special blessing to them. I’ve found a shortcut method to making them that I hope you will like.

Makes 1 dozen

* 1  loaf frozen bread dough (1 lb.)
* 1/2  cup  golden raisins
* 2  tablespoons  brandy
* 1/4  teaspoon  ground nutmeg
* 1  large egg
* 3/4  cup  powdered sugar
* 1  tablespoon  milk


Thaw frozen bread dough following package directions. Place in a large bowl, cover, and let stand until pliable and no longer cold, 30 minutes to 1 hour.

In a small bowl, soak raisins in brandy for 30 to 40 minutes. Add raisin mixture and nutmeg to dough. In bowl or on a board, knead raisins into dough. With floured hands, divide dough into 12 equal pieces; shape into round rolls. Place about 2 inches apart on a buttered baking sheet. Cover and let rise in a warm place until almost doubled, about 20 minutes. In a bowl, beat egg with 1 tablespoon water. Brush buns with egg mixture (discard remainder). Bake rolls in a 350º oven until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let stand 10 minutes.

In a bowl, mix powdered sugar and milk. With a spoon, drizzle icing over buns in the shape of a large X.