Thursday, March 16, 2017

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

I'm glad you stopped by Foodie Friday and Everything Else. The sun is streaming through the windows, but the wind is nippy, the kind that makes me want to drink hot, lemony tea and burrow under flannel blankets. Me, I don't like cold snaps. I have to continually remind myself about the Temperature of Happiness, so I'll throw off those blankets and step outside. 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Best in Show

We're dog people. 
My mother says that I was co-raised by dog--a blue Weimerainer named Cindy. This 60 pound beauty would gently prop her nose into my crib and make sure I was breathing. If I cried, Cindy would race out of my nursery and find my mother, who was usually hanging clothes on the line. Cindy would bite a corner of Mom's blouse and pull her into the house. I had Cindy on my mind when I drove over to Franklin, Tennessee, to see an AKC dog show. 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

I've set a place just for you at this week's Foodie Friday and Everything Else. On this spring-like day, we'll enjoy a light lunch, then wander out to the Adirondack chairs and wait for dusk.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

A Simple Spring Table

I need no prodding to enjoy an afternoon on the porch. In early March, the trees are still bare, and the view shows a wide sweep of sky and mountains. It's a view with an expiration date: soon we'll look into greenery, and one end of the porch will resemble a tree house.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

In my mind, I see you walking up the gravel path to the Foodie Friday and Everything Else Link Party. Under the string lights, food is set out on a long farm table. Red checkered napkins cover pans of lasagna, buttermilk fried chicken, salads, homemade rolls. Further down, bright bandanas are tied around Crock Pots, steam rising beneath the glass lids. At the far end of the table, on tiered plates, you'll find cupcakes, cake balls, and brownies. This talented group of ladies have also brought sewing projects, DIY ideas, printables, fashion, Easter and St. Patrick's Day ideas, homemade soap, decorating tips, greenery and fresh flowers, and food for thought. Beneath the starry sky, I hear girl talk and laughter: the music of our tribe.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

February Weather Journal

February Weather Journal
2/1/17-- The month begins with 58 degrees and clouds. Is it too much to hope for sun? The temperature is supposed to drop tonight, and rain is on the way. I am leery about this month, afraid it will be like January, nothing but a cold dungeon. I shouldn't complain because, so far, we haven't seen the pipe shattering temps of a polar vortex. I am determined to take at least one photograph a day, but a dark house creates challenges.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Old Fashioned Cornbread Salad

Winter's hearty stews and casseroles left me with a desire to lighten the menu...but not too much. With more spring-like weather on the way, I need a transitional dish, something that straddles the seasons. Nothing is more perfect than an old fashioned cornbread salad.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

February Frost

February gave a taste of simple, sweet, slow living, yet it broke all the rules. Warm, sunny days awoke the garden, setting off a premature blooming season. As I walked around the yard, white petals broke loose from the spirea and rose into the wind. Life was stirring in the butterfly bushes, too, dotting the branches with round green leaves--last year they hadn't sprouted until the end of April.  

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

I'm happy to see you at Foodie Friday and Everything Else. The arrival of spring-like weather caught us by surprise--70 degree temps, watery breezes, a swirl of daffodils--but I'm not complaining. My yard looks bedraggled, full of leaves and debris. The balmy temperatures might not last, so I'm sweeping away the cobwebs.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Creative Writing for Bloggers: Power Words

Ask any writer, and they'll name dozens of ways to hone a manuscript or post--weeding adjectives, eliminating unintentional rhyme, varying sentence length (and reducing the number of words that end in "ing"). Before I publish a post, I do a little trick. I tuck a power word at the end of almost every sentence. This is called "backloading."

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Tarragon-Apple Chicken Salad

When I look back on my girlhood, I don't remember dances or old beaus--I think about chicken salad. Even then, I was a bit obsessed with food, and my mother didn't have to cajole me to attend teas and luncheons. Nothing could compete with a buffet table: silver platters piled high with petit fours, lemon squares, pecan tassies, pastel mints, and tea sandwiches. An itty bitty chicken salad sandwich could make me swoon. At every event, I stood in line, imagining the first bite: the bread would be soft and barely there, but the salad would be cold, like touching your lips to glacial water, followed by warmth, comfort, and crunch, laced with mayonnaise and sweet bits of meat. One was never enough, but my mother was watching. Only uncouth, unladylike females reached for a second helping, and I tried to restrain myself in front of the chicken salad police. 

Monday, February 20, 2017

Ella's Flowers

On a cold, sunless day in January, I took down the festive holiday garlands and tucked away the woodland ornaments. The house looked off-kilter, bare in some places and cluttered in others. I rearranged tabletops and pushed furniture from room to room. An hour later, as I surveyed the scratched floors, I knew what was wrong: I'd lost my decorating mojo. 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

It's a pleasure to see your lovely faces at this week's Foodie Friday and Everything Else. You are a fun, talented group, and I adore playing with you. I'm still testing formats for our party, and I'd love to hear your opinions and ideas!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

A Heart By Any Other Name

When I think about the heart, I tend to be scientific, worrying about plaque and hardened arteries. But when trouble strikes, I put a steadying hand on my chest. Indeed, the ancients believed this organ was the center of human emotion, and poets wasted no time weaving their magic.

Monday, February 13, 2017

The Joy of Winter Flowers



"What a pretty bouquet," the check-out lady said. "Are you having a party?"
No, just brightening the house, I answered. Flowers always have a way of creating a little magic. As I walked out of the grocery, I held the flowers, the paper wrapper crinkling against my coat, feeling happy and festive, as if I were on my way to a wedding or other happy occasion.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

Welcome, welcome! It's time for Foodie Friday and Everything Else. I love that we don't have to leave our cozy nests to party. We can sit by the virtual fire and visit. Last week's party was amazing, filled with ideas for Valentine's Day, along with DIY projects, cold-weather recipes, and gorgeous tablescapes.