December

December

April 30, 2014

ALFRESCO DINING.....ENJOY THE SPRINGTIME

Sometimes words can stand out in your memory.
The word "celebrate" defines for me a joyful occasion to mark some happy event...
those special times in your life that may mean marking a triumph,
 a bit of success someone you love experiences or just a reason for togetherness.
 
I love planning dining experiences out of doors.
The food tastes better, people are more relaxed and the conversations flow easily.
There is not a place I would rather be than in the kitchen
creating memories of wonderful dishes.  
I can remember my sister and I giving tea parties for our friends
 trying to imitate our mother and the beautiful table settings she created.
The Divine Miss M carried on this girly imaginary play when she was a little girl.
 
Springtime is a time for worldly renewal.
It's also a time for spiritual renewal as our thoughts turn to Easter and 
where everything is reborn.  
 













 April showers bring......parties!
Springtime themes  will set the stage for making you a most beautiful hostess!

I am joining Miss Roxy at her blog today!
Enjoy other posts at Living From Glory to Glory!
http://livingfromglorytoglory.blogspot.com/
 

April 29, 2014

CATS! THE DATING GAME!

Conversation with sister........
 
Sister: "I'm going to lunch today to meet Camille's new friend. Actually, I think Camille casually invited him to join us for lunch since she and I had already planned a day of shopping and meeting at Jackson's  for a relaxing lunch.
 
Me: "Well! That should be interesting. Are you going to feel like a third wheel? I mean, she really has only known him a few weeks and they are in the early stages of getting to know each other."
 
Sister: "I can't say I'm actually looking forward to it. I have never met him and I don't know what her feelings are about him yet. You know "dating" in your seventies takes on a whole new meaning!"
 
Me: laughing hysterically........." Whoa baby, I cannot even imagine! But hey, good for them. It's companionship probably.....going to the symphony, out to dinner or the movies.....since they met at church, it's a good place to start, don't you think?"
 
Sister: "I suppose so. I won't really know what to talk about. Should I just sit there and keep quiet and let them just talk to each other? I would feel so silly just keeping quiet and not joining in the conversation!"
 
Me: "Relax....just see how it goes. But.......DO NOT give this guy the third degree. You do that when you get nervous! You're not dating him, Camille is. So give them a chance to get to know each other and don't grill him about his politics, his religious beliefs, his family dynamics, etc......that's all very personal. You will scare him away and he'll walk away thinking you're a nut job!"
 
Sister: "Well, do you think it's OK if I find out if he likes cats?"
 
Me: "Oh, absolutely!!! That would be my number one question! Call me and let me know if he passed the test! If he answers NO.....we know he's chicken dinner and can ease on down the road!"
 
 
 
People I have loved........and no wonder!
MUST LOVE CATS!

Vivien Leigh

Vivian Vance

Janis Joplin

Carole King

 Truman Capote
 
Steve McQueen
 
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
 
Butterfly McQueen

Imogene Coca

Ernest Hemingway

Dame Maggie Smith

 Elvis...Be Still My Heart


 
Have a Great Week!

April 28, 2014

TURQUOISE...BRINGING IT TOGETHER!


Perhaps, it is beach inspired! But our love for turquoise seems to be first and foremost for the warmer months of spring and summer. Shades of blues and greens blend together creating the beautiful watercolor shades of seaglass. I know one of my daughters-in-law is crazy in love with anything turquoise! So, with this as our inspiration, it's fun to keep your chosen color scheme in mind, when shopping for home finds, decorating your outdoors or adorning yourself with jewels!



A sweet and cheery apron can put you in the mood to play some music and
 dance around your kitchen!


What a lovely place setting this dinnerware could create! Yellow would be a perfect accent color for this gorgeous shade of turquoise! I would find this ideal for a ladies luncheon or a seafood buffet featuring some wicked good Maine Lobstah !


I have always had a fondness for creamers and petite pitchers.
Now, I have something in mind to shop for a estate sales and trade days!


I am going to have to purchase a set of turquoise ball jars! I gave one set to Jenn,
so these would be perfect for ice cold lemonade during the summer months!


Distressed and antiqued turquoise kitchen cabinets! How old world! Love this look!
 

I love this delicate cake stand! I need a trip to Home Goods! I so would love to have this!


My wish for a birthday cake! Here is my inspiration to create something beautiful and yummy!!!


How fun to create such a cool looking and colorful outdoor serving table!
I love that cake stand too! Oh my....so much to shop for!

 
How can it be possible to fall in love with Salt and Pepper shakers?


I love everything about this! Don't you?


Is this not gorgeous? One normally sees wrought iron fences in black,
but I love whoever thought to create such a lovely garden space surrounded by turquoise!
 

 
 Day Dreaming........


Romantic Ruffles

 


 
Beauty Sleeping
 


What a Girl Wants
 

Simply Beautiful...just the way you are

April 27, 2014

BRANDIED APPLE BUTTER

Easy like Sunday Morning.........
 
 
 

 ESTELLE’S BRANDIED APPLE BUTTER
1 (12 ounce) frozen apple juice concentrate, thawed
½ cup apple cider
4 lbs. McIntosh apples, peeled, cored and chopped
¾ cup brown sugar
(Estelle’s recommends using Dark Brown Sugar)
1 cup of Apple Brandy
1 t. cinnamon
1 t. ginger
¼ t. ground cloves

 
Bring apple juice, apple cider and McIntosh apples to a boil in a stockpot. Reduce your heat to low and simmer for about one hour. Apples should become very soft and can be easily matched. Mix brown sugar, apple brandy, and spices into the apple mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered for two hours. Mixture will thicken. Transfer to sealed, sterile ball jars and cool completely before serving!

April 25, 2014

EASY CHICKEN PIE



 
There are some dishes that everyone should know how to make. Chicken Pot Pie is one of them.
I can make this dish with my eyes closed, as I have been preparing this recipe for the last forty years.
When anyone was sick or feeling feverish, I knew this recipe could restore them to good health!
It is adapted from one of my favorite cookbooks from Madison, Mississippi and was purchased for me at the Canton Flea Market. If you have never experienced the Canton Flea Market, held twice a year, then you should make plans to attend. It's the market to end all markets. We would always spend a day in October browsing the square in Canton.
 
 

I like to make this rather rustic. I use chicken thighs because they add better flavor and moisture to your recipe. I prefer the vegetables to be rather chunky, than finely chopped. And peas....oh honey, a chicken pot pie is not the same with a can of peas! And...yes, it does use a can of mushroom soup..it's a southern staple. Talk about comfort food......your family will know they are loved when you serve this one!


 
 
Easy Chicken Pie
~Madison County Cookery
Four boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup chicken broth
2 cups small carrots
6-8 new potatoes, unpeeled and sliced in half
1 can green peas, drained
1 small onion, chopped
½ cup celery, chopped
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Dash of Tabasco sauce
1 t. rotisserie chicken seasoning
1 t. black pepper
1 t. garlic powder
3 hardboiled eggs
Biscuit mix
Milk

 Season chicken thighs with seasonings and drizzle with olive oil.  Surround chicken with carrots, potatoes and onion. Pour chicken broth over all. Bake at 300 degrees F. for 1 ½ hours, covered. Remove from oven and add Worcestershire sauce, cream of mushroom soup, tabasco sauce, chopped boiled eggs. In a mixing bowl, combine 2 cups of biscuit mix with enough milk to make it a thick pouring consistency. Bake at 350 degrees until browned.


Estelle's is part of Foodie Friday today....hop over for fabulous recipes!!
 

April 24, 2014

HISTORIC OAKLAND IN THE HEART OF ATLANTA

Margaret Mitchell (Author of Gone With the Wind), Morris and Emanuel Rich (Rich's Department  store), Governor Joseph E. Brown (Georgia's only four-term governor) and Julia Carlisle Withers (known as Atlanta's First Baby) are a few among the 70,000 souls laid to rest in the historic Oakland Cemetery.
 
The Divine Miss M, Luke and I paid a visit to this most beautiful green space in February. Spring was just beginning to make an appearance on this day and we wanted to tour Atlanta's oldest landmark.
 
Oakland was established in Atlanta in 1850. There was a need to lay 7,000 Confederate soldiers to rest so six acres of farmland were purchased to accommodate this need and many original interments were moved to the new Oakland. Oakland now covers 48 acres, which is only five blocks east of the State Capital. It is in the very midst of urban and commercial developments.
 
I find cemeteries fascinating and Oakland is full of history and stories to be told. There are gardens of beauty, notable architecture and symbolism. The City of Atlanta owns and is responsible for the roads, paths and public grounds. Two-thirds of the cemetery belong to private lot owners who are responsible for the maintenance of their lots. Due to the fact that some of these private lots are family owned and so aged, explains why some lots are in such a sad state of disrepair. There are no longer family members to care for the headstones or the overgrown brush. Oakland serves as a history museum, botanical garden and arboretum, Audubon wildlife sanctuary and active city park.
 

We began our tour here
"Tweet" The Mockingbird was one of several beloved family pets buried at Oakland.
The grave has a lamb for a headstone because the stone carver could not depict a mockingbird.
 


Luke placed a bright yellow flower on this old, old headstone to show that he visited



Part of the original six acres
Symbols were often used as a form of shorthand.
They represent a complex idea or form of emotion.
Symbolism was very popular during the Victorian era.


These were the largest Magnolia trees I had ever seen.....
magnificent against the skyline of Atlanta
 

Miss M and Luke touring the original six acres and observing all of these beautiful Magnolias
 

This was so ornate...they must have loved their mother a great deal


This is an entire family


The view of their family plot from the front


 
 Lovely Camellias
 


One of the many family Mausoleum's
 
 
Camellias


Showing the way to the Marsh family.....Margaret Mitchell's final resting place
Margaret was born in the nearby Old Fourth Ward of Atlanta
and often rode her pony Nellie, through the grounds of Oakland


A visitor had placed a red heart box of Valentine's chocolate on their headstone
 


Another family.....


This part of the cemetery is unbelievably ornate and majestic
 

A baby boy....
of the 70,000 stories residing within Oakland,
50% of these belong to the children
 

Signs of Spring


This area is aged and very close to the Slave Square
Between 1852 and 1877, over 800 African-Americans were buried in part of the original six acres.
 In 1877 the Atlanta City Council ordered the bones and bodies of these people be removed and reburied in the "colored pauper grounds".
Their plots were then resold to whites.



The Bloomfield family plot honors four young sisters, ages 2,4,6 and 8, who died within a 10-day period in 1863 of Diphtheria. Ivy on the cross symbolizes fidelity and friendship, a rose garland represents love and beauty.


I placed this dried Hydrangea on this marker....it looked so lonely to me




The Confederate Memorial grounds. 16 Union soldiers are also buried here.
There are 3,000 soldiers who are unknown...their headstones are marked "Confederate Soldier"...
no name, no birth or death date


This is the Lion of Atlanta
He guards the unknown soldiers
He was erected in 1894 by the Atlanta Ladies of Memorial Assoc.
He depicts a lion mortally wounded by a broken spear,
clutching the Confederate flag.
He was patterned after the Lion of Lucerne in Switzerland
 

I was extremely interested in learning about the Jewish sections of Oakland. These parcels were purchased in 1878 by the Hebrew Benevolent Congregation, The Temple which was primarily a German congregation. There is also an area of mainly Russian and Eastern European heritage and noted differences in land usage and symbolism. We ran into this man and his Golden Retriever who happened to work at Oakland and was kind enough to give us a most interesting history lesson.


A portion of the Jewish section.
They did not believe in flowers on the gravesites or any waste of land,
hence the monuments are very close to each other.



This was a good example of a very aged marker where the family has died.
There is no one left to maintain the family owned property.
Rather unnerving to see this.


This is the Austell Mausoleum, 1883 Gothic Revival
It was built by Alfred Austell, 1814-1881, who was a prominent banker and
founder of the Atlanta National Bank (now Wells Fargo).
It is the highest spot in Oakland and cost $16,000 for construction


Oakland holds special evens to support the Historic Oakland Foundation.
There are private group tours, special topic tours and special events.

LOVE STORIES OF OAKLAND
PHOENIX FLIES
 (celebrating the architecture, landscapes and significant buildings)
THE RUN LIKE HELL 5K: PUSHING UP DAISIES
TUNES FROM THE TOMB (a weekend of music and spirits)
SUNDAY IN THE PARK, A VICTORIAN FESTIVAL
CAPTURING THE SPIRIT OF OAKLAND HALLOWEEN TOURS