Friday, November 30, 2007
Oh Christmas tree, oh green Christmas tree?

Oh Green Christmas Tree... that's exactly what we did on Sunday right after the company left. We went for a most wonderful family fun time again, to pick out our own Christmas Tree at the Christmas Tree Farm! Locally owned, grown, and picked out by my very own sons. It was a nice crisp day. The farm had so many fun activities, festivities and even a little Santa's Elf Shop of goodies. We were quite content with our own find - the best Christmas tree ever. The hot chocolate could have been a lure except that we had just had a nice Italian dinner out that really hit the spot for all of us. I loved "The Lil' Shaker" that got our tree ready for the living room. It is the cutest and coolest Christmas tree tool out there - ok, other than the fact that they net and tied it on top of our car/van :) for us. Here's what Yahoo had to say about 'going green' and using the real stuff! Read it and make your own enviornmentally friendly choice. Believe me, you will not be disappointed in that lovely aroma in your own home.

Oh Christmas tree, oh green Christmas tree?
By Trystan L. Bass | Posted Mon Nov 26, 2007 1:21pm PST

Nothing says "Christmas" like the smell of pine in your living room on a winter morning! But is that smell really "green" or is it bad for the planet? Is it more environmentally responsible to buy a fake tree and use it year after year? What about keeping a live tree for Christmas? Let's look at the options one by one.

If you want a tree for the holiday, the experts at Grist and TreeHugger say it's actually better to buy a cut real Christmas tree than an artificial tree.

Why? In a word, plastics. Fake trees are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Producing this type of plastic creates a lot of pollution, and PVC is difficult to recycle.

Plus, lead has been found in PVC. According to a report (PDF) in the Journal of Environmental Health, lead levels are higher in older artificial trees. You've probably heard about lead in children's toys, so just imagine the kiddos hanging around lead-tainted branches of your fake Christmas tree. Not a merry scene.

Farmed Christmas trees are ultimately a renewable resource. Growing trees absorb carbon dioxide, and after the holidays, the trees can be recycled into mulch. Check Earth 911 to see where to take your dead tree after the 25th.

What about a live tree? This is often promoted as the ultimate eco-friendly holiday option. Well, it's not that simple. First, you have to live in the right climate to plant a tree after Christmas. If the ground is frozen outside, you can't do it.

Then, you can only keep a live tree indoors for a few days, either 4 to 10, depending on the type of tree. You can't have this tree up after Thanksgiving and around till New Years, or you'll kill it.

Some types of live trees can be kept outside in containers for a year or two. Others grow fast and must be planted in the ground sooner. Either way, this isn't a long-term solution to your Christmas decorations -- what do you do the following year? Pretty soon, the tree won't fit in the house.

Also, you must carefully consider how much space you have in your yard to plant trees. Remember, these trees may grow up to 60-feet tall.

So, the most practical solution for earth-friendly folks who celebrate Christmas is to look for a locally grown tree. Ask if the farm uses integrated pest management instead of tons of chemicals.

If you can, find a cut-your-own Christmas tree farm. It's good family fun too.

Thursday, November 29, 2007
Blessed By These
Thanksgiving still has me savoring the past year. Savoring the joys of each day. Family, friends, health, happiness, sunshine, rain, time well spent - whether with my Creator, sweet husband, my own Cherubs, or enjoying a family gathering. Our Christmas card last year wished everyone a year full of life. Thankfully, we can say this year life has been full. I am thankful for that blessing. Now into the Season of the Giver of Life.


Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Still Enjoying The Blessings of Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving was bountiful and blessed. 
The day reflected lots to be thankful for again - family, a wonderful year, great food and friends. 
We hosted friends from our old neighborhood.  It was delightful.  We truly had
an old-fashioned, family-fun, Thanksgiving.
Our menu was traditional with a twist.  We love the tried-and-true family recipes of old.
And yet we always like a little update and something new.  A new version of a good thing.
A more healthy, more time-efficient way, or a down-right tastier version.  This year with
entertaining other friends, we were very successful with the adaptation of a new take on an
old original Thanksgiving Dressing.  Happily, I report that my shining moment ;) came with
the final product, our lovely Thanksgiving Day Turkey. :)  I say that with a sacred tone simply 
because after slowly emerging from almost 14 years of vegetarian-ism culminating this year 
with me cooking a Turkey.  Well, I wanted it to all go well.  And let's just say I have not had
the past fourteen years of Thanksgiving experience at it.  
After much reading on the wide world of internets, I went with my husband's reminder of the one
time we did make the turkey for my family and we successfully used my brother and wife's 
'receipe' and it was loved by all.  This year was the best-ever turkey.  After a little pinch for time
and sticking with my instincts of providing for a table of eight - I went with a kosher ten pound - yes,
you heard me - 10 .lb turkey from Trader Joe's.  No preservatives, no false hormone growth, no 
brining - I'm just saying TJ's always pulls me through.  I mean how could I go wrong with Joe's behind
me.  And the little voice in my head reminded me that my husband's one request was not two weeks
of turkey sandwiches left over. :)   I did peak at Martha and get a little trick to add to my brother's
famous fool-proof recipe.  Since most of the family wants to know the recipe, I'll post later.  However,
I do have other things about Thanksgiving to report besides the food.  So next post up.


Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Cajun Thanksgiving Dressing
On this Eve of Thanksgiving, we have been readying ourselves to host Thanksgiving. Everything is going well except I just discovered I have gotten too comfortable in my abilities to take on the roll of Southern Martha Stewart. Or Paula Dean. I have done this about half of the Thanksgivings in our married life so I thought simple, just take each step. Until tonight, I am in the kitchen finalizing my Dressing as we call it. You know, so it can really merry the flavor overnight.

Now that I'm backing up, maybe I started the decline when I ventured off to please everyone. Let me explain. With a North Carolina mother and a New Orleans lawyer Daddy, I got Southern dressing for Thanksgiving Dinner. That being dressing with cornbread and oysters and pecans. (p-cahns! yes!) I got really close to duplicating my mother's classic best dressing in those early newlywed years of hosting my family. My mother securely passed along the recipe walking me through each step. It was about time after she continued hosting Thanksgiving for 25 years. She lost a little steam the year we unexpectedly lost our Daddy.... I'll fill you new readers in again once I can introduce you to him properly.

This year since our guests are New Orleans, the same ole French Cajun background, and French Canadian. I was pleased to discover Thanksgiving Dressing by my new friend, Ree @ We can actually possibly have a happy medium on the dressing cause - one dressing for all. Ree uses half french (get the theme here! :) and half cornbread dressing. It's a win-win situation and especially if you go look at her pictures. I so wanted to be Ree Pioneer Woman tomorrow with my new dressing. Herein lies the problem. I took a short cut. And a true Southern girl does not take a short cut on Thanksgiving Day. Yikes. What was I thinking! I was so sold on the organic nature of the Trader Joe's Cornbread "mix." It would have gone unnoticed except - it added sugar - right there on the ingredient list. I know better and I didn't think to look until tonight at 11:30pm after I tasted my final product and it tastes more like a dessert. And that is not a good Cajun Thanksgiving Dressing.

Well, not only is the day about Dressing but I hope tomorrow will carry a hearty helping of grace as everyone discovers my "sweet" dressing. Otherwise, we're set to have a Happy Thanksgiving! A thankful one as we savor the past year. Blessings to you all.


Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Thanksgiving & Friends
Well here's one, I have not been in posting position due to a house full of dear family and friend coming and going. Thanksgiving has been our hosting month extraordainaire! We love it. We're busy. And our dear old neighbor friends are due here tomorrow night for the big Thanksgiving Feast and weekend. We're happy about that. And mamma's scurrying around to ready the nest. And the kitchen! My mother's shoes are hard to fill as for hosting the Thanksgiving meal. She taught me to love it and do it well. So we're off to give it our best Girl Scout pledge.
Blessings to you all as we savor the past year and look on to the new one.


Wednesday, November 07, 2007
The Woods Fall 2007


We love the outdoors. Here are a few candids of us just hiking around, chasing deer and playing.

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately and see if I could not learn what it had to teach." Henry David Thoreau


Sunday, November 04, 2007
Southern Women
Southern women appreciate their natural assets: Clean skin. A winning smile. That unforgettable Southern drawl.

Southern women know their manners:"Yes, ma'am." "Yes, sir." "Why, no, Billy!"

Southern women have a distinct way with fond expressions:"Y'all come back!" "Well, bless your heart." "Drop by when you can." "How's your Momma?"

Southern women know their summer weather report:Humidity Humidity Humidity

Southern women know their vacation spots:The beachThe rivuhThe crick

Southern women know the joys of June, July, and August:Colorful hi-heel sandalsStrapless sun dressesIced sweet tea with mint

Southern women know everybody's first name:Honey Darlin' Shugah

Southern women know the movies that speak to their hearts:Fried Green Tomatoes Driving Miss DaisySteel Magnolias Gone With The Wind

Southern women know their religions:Baptist Methodist Football

Southern women know their country breakfasts:Red-eye gravy Grits Eggs Country ham Mouth-watering homemade biscuits with momma's homemade jelly

Southern women know their cities dripping with Southern charm: Chawl'stn
S'vanah Foat Wuth N'awlins Addlanna

Southern women know their elegant gentlemen: Men in uniform. Men in tuxedos Rhett Butler

Southern girls know their prime real estate: The Mall The Country Club The Beauty Salon

Southern girls know the 3 deadly sins: Having bad hair and nails Having bad manners Cooking bad food

More Suthen-ism's: Only a Southerner knows the difference between a hissie fit and a conniption fit , and that you don't "HAVE" them, you "PITCH" them.

Only a Southerner knows how many fish, collard greens, turnip greens, peas, beans, etc., make up "a mess."

Only a Southerner can show or point out to you the general direction of "yonder."

Only a Southerner knows exactly how long "directly" is, . as in: "Going to town, be back directly."

Even Southern babies know that "Gimme some sugar" is not a request for the white, granular sweet substance that sits in a pretty little bowl in the middle of the table.

All Southerners know exactly when "by and by" is. They might not use the term, but they know the concept well.

Only a Southerner knows instinctively that the best gesture of solace for a neighbor who's got trouble is a plate of hot fried chicken and a big bowl of cold potato salad. If the neighbor's trouble is a real crisis, they also know to add a large banana puddin!

Only Southerners grow up knowing the difference between "right near" and "a right far piece." They also know that "just down the road" can be 1 mile or 20.

Only a Southerner, both knows and understands, the difference between a redneck, a good ol' boy, and po' white trash.

No true Southerner would ever assume that the car with the flashing turn signal is actually going to make a turn.

A Southerner knows that "fixin" can be used as a noun, a verb, or an adverb.

Only Southerners make friends while standing in lines, ... and when we're "in line," . we talk to everybody!

Put 100 Southerners in a room and half of them will discover they're related, even if only by marriage.

In the South, y'all is singular, all y'all is plural.

Southerners know grits come from corn and how to eat them.

Every Southerner knows tomatoes with eggs, bacon, grits, and coffee are perfectly wonderful; that red eye gravy is also a breakfast food; and that fried green tomatoes are not a breakfast food.

When you hear someone say, "Well, I caught myself lookin'," you know you are in the presence of a genuine Southerner!

Only true Southerners say "sweet tea" and "sweet milk." Sweet tea indicates the need for sugar and lots of it -- we do not like our tea unsweetened. "Sweet milk" means you don't want buttermilk.

And a true Southerner knows you don't scream obscenities at little old ladies who drive 30 MPH on the freeway. You just say,"Bless her heart" ... and go your own way.

To those of you who are still a little embarrassed by your Southerness: Take two tent revivals and a dose of sausage gravy and call me in the morning. Bless your heart!

And to those of you who are still having a hard time understanding all this Southern stuff, ... bless your hearts, I hear they are fixin' to have classes on Southernness as a second language!

And for those that are not from the South but have lived here for a long time, all y'all need a sign to hang on y'alls front porch that reads "I ain't from the South, but I got here as fast as I could."
Southern girls know men may come and go, but friends are fahevah !

Now...... Shugah, send this to someone who was raised in the South or wish they had been!
If you're a Northern transplant, Bless your little heart, fake it.We know you got here as fast as you could. Amen!

Thanks to It's A Mom Thing for passing this on from for this. I love it! Love the verse about the "Northerners - you got here as fast as you could." Now if you're going to make fun ya'll, just mosey on up north of the Mason Dixon Line. Otherwise, have fun, join in and enjoy ya'll!


Clicky Web Analytics
Read my VisualDNA Get your own VisualDNA™