Thursday, August 27, 2009

It's Party Time

This just so happens to be my 50th post, and I'm going to a party! A Rooster Party that it is! This lovely affair is being hosted by Barb over at Bella Vista.

Now I don't consider myself a collector, and I'm sure there are those who have many more than I do, but the roosters I do have seem to have found a comfortable place at my house. My decor isn't country, yet I think they fit in quite well......I didn't set out to collect them but they sort of made their way to me over the last few years, and now that they're here they seem to add a little something to my home that wasn't here before.

This little guy wanted to be first. He's made of tin and I bought him a few years ago to be part of a centerpiece at my husbands "Southern Fried Chicken Birthday Party" he loves a good party! I like to sit him in the middle of the breakfast table on bright sunny mornings.

This platter is one I've had for many years that is perfect when used as a breadbasket for hot biscuits or rolls.

I currently have these sitting atop one of my pantries along with several of my rooster cups from a favorite set of dishes.

This little rooster/spoon holder is probably my favorite. Besides being so cute it is actually very handy. It belonged to my mother-in-law and she always kept it in their winter home here in Phoenix. She passed away 3 years ago and my father-in-law just recently asked if I would like to have it.....well of course! :)

I also became the owner of her lovely cookie jar.

These two just naturally belong together so I have them sitting on my kitchen counter along side my glass canisters of staples.

Finally, just take a look at this guy! Isn't he handsome? He doesn't actually live here at our house but he's a local favorite. We visit him occasionally at Tolmachoff Farms right outside of the city here. We first met him a few Octobers ago at the Pumpkin Festival..........this would make a great print, wouldn't it?
Hope you've enjoyed yourself while you've been go on over to Bella Vista and continue to party!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Ham 'n Cola

It will be here before you know it.........that final holiday of summer.

This is what we'll be having over the Labor Day weekend. Since we're spending the time at home, puttering around the house, catching up on some projects, I think this Slow Cooker recipe is going to work out really well. It's just a little bit out of the ordinary, since we don't have it very often, making our holiday seem a little bit special.....and on top of that, it is so easy that I won't have to pay much attention to it at all. On Sunday of that week we'll be having the ham sliced, with potato salad and rolls, then on Monday the 7th we'll have ham sandwiches , with coleslaw and corn on the cob. On the Saturday before, the guys are making Fresh Peach Ice Cream .........hopefully enough to last the entire weekend.......using the recipe from the post here. So if we add lots of iced tea and lemonade I think we're all set to enjoy a very productive, end-of-summer favorite kind.

Ham 'n Cola

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 tsp dry mustard

1 tsp prepared horseradish

1/4 cup Coke

3 to 4 lb precooked ham

Throughly combine brown sugar, mustard and horseradish. Moisten with just enough cola to make a smooth paste; reserve remaining cola. Rub entire ham with mixture. Place ham in crock pot and add remaining cola. Cover and cook on high for 1 hour, then turn to low setting for 6 to 7 hours. * Note: a 5lb pound or larger ham can be used in the larger crock pots.....just use slightly more cola and add an hour or two to the low setting cooking time.


This post is linked to these delicious sites........just click on each one to enjoy!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Shrimp on the Barbie

For those of you who have been reading my blog for any length of time you know I live in the Desert Southwest where our summers are extremely hot. As you can tell from the Autumn Countdown widget on my sidebar, I am anxious for cooler weather to get here. That being said, I have to tell you that the other nine months of the year the weather is absolutely gorgeous here. That means that we use our grill virtually year round. We enjoy our share of grilled burgers, hot dogs, and steaks.......but there are so many other possibilities. Today I'm sharing quick and easy shrimp on the barbie.......some of you will pick up on that reference to the Crocodile Dundee movies from the eighties with Paul Hogan..... he was Australia's spokesman and the phrase "shrimp on the barbie" became the catch phrase for Australia's tourism adds for quite a while.
My husband is usually the one who does the grilling around here and is an all around great chef in his own right, so today this post is with much assistance from him. There are quite a few ways you can go with this dish, so just pick whichever one you want to try first. Or do several at a time.......these literally take only minutes and with the addition of your favorite sides you'll be having dinner in no time at all.
Shrimp on the Barbie
20 or so medium to large shrimp, peeled and deveined
Wooden skewers
Any of the spices and sauces shown below
First of all, and be sure not to skip this part, soak the skewers in water for about 15 minutes. (obviously this is to keep the skewers from catching on fire.....a great tip no matter what you're grilling ) . Lace the shrimp onto the skewers so that they kind of "spoon" each other. Three or four shrimp will easily fit on a sure to put them toward the top of the skewer and leave a little handle for yourself at the bottom. Brush liberally with any of the spice mixtures, then place on a medium heated grill .Grill 3 minutes on first side, turn them over, brush liberally with mixture again and grill for another 3 minutes. Don't overcook! Test for doneness by breaking one shrimp open; if the inside is completely opaque and no longer translucent, it's done. Grilling time may vary slightly depending on the size of the shrimp, but you want your shrimp to be tender, white, and flaky, not rubbery.
Here are some of the various mixtures to use on your shrimp:
1) 1/4 cup melted butter, juice of 1 lemon or lime, salt
2) 1/4 cup melted butter, finely chopped cilantro, juice of 1 lime, salt
3) 1/4 cup melted butter, 1/2 cup hot sauce (we like Cholula hot sauce),salt
4) 1/4 cup melted butter with favorite Cajun Seasoning, salt
5) Shrimp Seasoning to shake on after you've brushed shrimp with melted butter: 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, dash allspice, 1/2 teaspoon minced parsley.Mix ingredients and put in shaker.
6) 1/4 cup of melted butter, lemon pepper
7) 1/3 cup olive oil, 1 large clove of garlic, crushed, salt, juice of 1 lemon or lime
Finally, here are some sauces to "go with". The bottled Heinz Cocktail sauce is really very good and these other recipes are easy to whip up for some delicious dipping!
Remoulade Sauce
(from the Outback Steakhouse)
3/4 cup mayonaise, 5 teaspoons stone ground mustard, 4 teaspoons milk, 2 teaspoons minced celery, 2 teaspoons minced green pepper, 2 teaspoons sauerkraut, 1 teaspoon white vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper, minced fresh parsley
Make the remoulade sauce by mixing the ingredients together in a small bowl. Cover and chill this sauce until you are ready to use it.

Garlic Butter for Dipping
1/2 cup butter, 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon lemon juice (about 1/2 lemon), 1/8 teaspoon hot pepper sauce, 1 large garlic clove, crushed, salt
In a small saucepan, melt butter. Add remaining ingredients; heat for 1 minute. Serve with shrimp or other seafood.
The smoke from the grill really brings out the flavor in the shrimp so you may just want to simply brush them lightly with melted butter or olive oil and give them a dash of salt before putting them on the grill. They'll taste delicious no matter how you decide to prepare them.


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Pacific Shore

Today I'm linked to these lovely sites:

Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Perfect Kind of Peace

The Word has an amazingly simple solution for anxiety: trust in God, and find our anxiety replaced by a spiritual peace beyond anything we've ever experienced, or can even understand.

Think about this. Worry is actually prayer in reverse.

In Luke 12:6-7 it says to " Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your minds and hearts through Christ Jesus."

So next time we're tempted to worry and to be anxcious about anything in our lives let's take a look at a rose, such as this lovely Sun Flare rose from my garden, and remember this:
27"Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?" 28"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these." Matthew 6:27-29

Or anyone of us can just look out our back door, catch a glimpse of a sparrow anytime of the day and be reminded of this:
6 “Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God. 7 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows." Luke 12: 6 & 7 amp; 

Blessings for a "worry free week",

 For more inspiration for the week be sure to stop by Spiritual Sundays
And for inspiration from God's lovely world see Today's Flowers

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A Rare Summer Picnic

Since this week Jim and I will be busy celebrating our August 14th Wedding Anniversary, I will be AWOL from my computer the rest of the week. That being the case, I am linking to several other sites for this post and they are listed at the bottom.......please be sure to check them out! :)

As many of you know I'm hooked on Scrapbooking.............
I've gotten several e-mails lately asking when I was going to post more of my scrapbook pages so I've decided to feature pages from a spur-of-the-moment picnic we had a short while back. Here in the desert there are virtually no picnics after Memorial Day or then again before Labor Day, primarily because of the heat. That's my world. Now picnics and BBQ's around backyard pools are an entirely different in Phoenix people live in their pools all summer. No, the kind of picnics I'm talking about are the" picnics- in- the- park" type of meal. Some years you can't even be sure it will still be cool enough by Memorial Day. Fortunately, in this particular year it was still relatively cool, and when we realized this we headed to Cortez Park at the last minute with a few friends.
As I've said before I now do digital scrapbooking exclusively. While I loved doing it the paper and paste way I found that with the volume of photos I want to scrap it was so time consuming that I would never stay caught up. I scrap chronologically with a scrapbook for every year. I keep each page fairly simple by arranging the photos with whatever clipart strikes my fancy at the time. I don't use this many "talk bubbles" every time but in this particular layout I wanted to use humorous conversation to move the story along.
We had a lot of fun with this insanely large frisby. None of us were used to doing this anymore so it was quite comical in itself.......a fact that was not lost on our teenagers!

You see? Teenagers.....gotta love 'em.

I create the layouts using Photo Shop, print each one out on my regular printer as an 8x8
page, then add to my 8 x 8 sized scrapbook. I also love the fact that I can make CDs of each years albums and keep them in a safe place as a back up "just in case".

The end of a long day......time for a nice siesta under the trees.

I'm leaving you today with a recipe that I took to that impromptu picnic that day...... Janie's Baked Beans. Now these beans are quick,easy, and definitely not baked. They can be prepared on top of the stove or in an electric skillet with not much effort. You can serve them warm, but I much prefer them cold. It's a good idea if you're taking them somewhere other than your own backyard that you chill them first, put in a plastic container and pack in your ice chest. These go so well with any kind of outdoor meal. Yummy and foolproof.
Janie's Quick Baked Beans
I call them this because this started out as
my baby sister's recipe a long time ago....
then I took it over :)


4 slices bacon, diced

1 chopped onion

1/2 bell pepper, diced

I can pork and beans (31 oz)

3 Tbs dark mollasses

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 tsp prepared mustard

1/2 tsp tabasco

1/3 cup Ketchup

2 Tbsp Worcester Sauce

In electric skillet or large frying pan saute first 3 ingredients until they are tender. Mix other ingredients in, cooking over low heat. Simmer until well seasoned. Serves 6.........but I often double, triple, or even quadruple this recipe for a large crowd. It is very can experiment with each of the ingredients until you get it just the way you like it.


@ Beauty & Bedlam @The Gypsy's Corner @Blessed with Grace

@ That's My World

And finally check out Hooked on Fridays @

Thursday, August 6, 2009

A Little Bloggy Housekeeping

There are a few little things I need to take care of today........

First I'd like to thank Geri for the "One Lovely Blog" award. I'd like to encourage all of you to go on over to her blog "Heart and Soul Cooking" and look around. This lady is one great cook. I'd even suggest becoming a follower of hers so you won't miss any of the delicious recipes she posts daily!

As a recipient of this award we're asked to pass on the award to 15 others. There are so many terrific blogs out there now but these are some of my favorites. There's a link to each of them so you can enjoy them too.

  1. Amy @ Home Acre
  2. 50's Gal @ My Year 1955

Also I would like to say thank you to Sarah @ Sarah Over the Rainbow

Just a short while before I took my Bloggy Break in the Spring I won one of Sarah's fantastic giveaways. Imagine my surprise! I'm really not used to winning things! I thanked her through e-mail but not publicly. Anyway, I won the loveliest book from her and I wanted to say a proper thank you here on my blog . Her place reminds me of a lovely snapshot into a young family's life.

Finally I want to say thanks to Mikki @ Here's What Let's Do .

She helped me identify the plant I was asking about here in my California Dreaming post from last week. Sure enough it's a "Chenille Plant" just like she thought. I've been trying to find out what it was for several I've even found an online nursery that sells them. Yoo Whooo! So thanks Mikki for the help!

Oh, and a quick shout out to all my followers. I've visited all of you who have blogs and you're all so incredibly interesting. I know I'd have fun meeting all of you in person. And anyone else who wants to follow I'd love to have you! :)

Hope you all have a lovely weekend!