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Showing posts from March, 2017

Mama Kat Thursday: That Went Well

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My Hubby is the sort of guy who, whenever he gets an idea of something funny to say, he just blurts it out. Recently we went to our local Air Force Commissary, where we go weekly, and we passed a woman employee unloading boxes of Reese's Easter Egg Chocolates into a Easter display and had a grocery cart full of empty Reeses Egg boxes. This woman also happens to be a cashier we've met in line while checking out for many years. But all Hubby sees is all those empty Reeses boxes in the cart and with a big grin, says, "You must have eaten all those!" He didn't even think about the fact this lady happens to be a short, plump woman. For a split second she just stared blankly at Hubby, not immediately sure how to take that. I'm standing there beside Hubby feeling like this GIF of Jim Carey! Then, a another second later, she broke into a smile. She got the joke. She laughed. Hubby laughed and it was all good. As we walked away, I whispered to Hub

Garden Pic Wednesday: Spring Border Clean Up!

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Cleaning up this border above the block wall was one of my tasks this week. I like to put my potted plants here for summer because it's shady with a touch of sun at certain times of the day. I put down a layer of wood mulch just to make this area look nice this year, then put out my various indoor plants: Aloe (red container), a red velvet Echeveria (blue container) & Christmas Cactus (yellow container). I noticed the mulch helped the clumps the Aspargus fern stand out. My yard is lower then the herringbone property at this point, thus the need for the pretty block wall.

Good Eating Monday: Eat Like a Samoan!

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We have an Air Force girl in our Bible study, named Hope, who's originally from American Samoa, which is a Pacific Island. As you might guess from the name, it's an American Territory, like Guam. I invited her to share native Samoan food with our group on Sunday night and she made Samoan Chop Suey ( Sapasui ) and Green Banana in Savory Coconut Sauce (Fa'allifu Fa'i ). She explained that the Green Bananas in Savory Coconut Sauce is a  Samoan meal stable---it's their starch, like potatoes.  Funny thing, these hot bananas in coconut milk  actually tasted very similar to potatoes. They weren't sweet at all and had absolutely no banana flavor. Being green, they were quite firm and not mushy at all. To make it, she baked the bananas in their skins, then sauteed sliced onion, combined it with unsweetened coconut milk, added salt & pepper then poured the hot sauce over the hot bananas. (photo is the actual dish she made) It was good, but my taste buds

Mama Kat Thursday: The One Good Day

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The Mama Kat prompt I'm doing today is, "Share a Memorable Day at Work." I worked at a flower shop for many, many years. I was a floral designer (the person who makes the arrangements). I have to say that I remember more bad days, then good, but there was one really extraordinary day when a lady came into the flower shop on a day I happened to be working, looking for fresh flowers for wedding reception table arrangements. As Mother-of-the-groom, buying the flowers for this was her contribution to the wedding. She told me the wedding colors were "teal and brown," and she wanted to know if it was possible to get any "brown colored" flowers? Well, I can safely tell you there are not many fresh flowers that come naturally actually brown. What's called brown is often a bit more on the light tan-orange side. Then I had an idea. I remembered we  had a chart of Gerbera Daisy colors available from our local flower wholesaler and one of them wa

Garden Pic Wednesday: First Dutch Iris!

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I can smell the scent of fresh made bread-maker bread wafting through the house! I was working on mowing & raking yesterday and cleaning up the back corner bed. I needed to dig up all the Cannas back there or least most, because I have a set of new bulbs coming with leaves that are variegated  with color in them. Everything in Florida is so green. It's nice plant other sorts of green or contrasting color in the garden! I did save a several of the healthiest looking old Canna's to plant elsewhere, but I have to admit the majority weren't looking that good, but they're quite old. Todays Garden Pic is the First Dutch Iris bloom for spring 2017! Known for their purple-nearly blue color, Dutch Iris are bulb based, easy to grow and multiply readily.  They also perform okay in a vase, but actually the bloom lasts longer outside. I like the this color, but they come in a wide range of colors!

Good Eating Monday: Classic Magic Cookie Bars!

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Today's recipe is a childhood favorite--the original Classic Magic Cookie Bars! This is the vintage recipe from the 70's. Photo is a pan of my own I made. Classic Magic Cookie Bars Ingredients 1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted (1 stick) 1 1/2 cups Graham Cracker Crumbs 1 cup chopped Walnuts 1 cup semi-sweet Chocolate Chips 1 1/3 cup Shredded Sweet Coconut 1 can of Eagle Brand Condensed Milk  (regular, low-fat or non-fat) Directions: 1) Pre-heat oven to 350 and grease a 10 x 13 pan with oil cooking spray, 2)  In a small bowl, stir Graham crumbs & melted butter together with a fork until crumbs are all moist, then spread over bottom of 10 x 13 pan and pat down to form a crust. 3) Sprinkle chopped walnuts evenly over graham crust. Sprinkle chocolate chips over that and finally sprinkle coconut evenly over nuts & chips. 4)  Drizzle evenly with the condensed milk, tilting can just enough so a thin stream comes out. Work back and forth i

Mama Kat Thursday: Top 5 1974 Hits!

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I was well into my teens before I first started really listening to popular music on the radio. That was around 1973-1974. Those were the days of vinyl records and D.J.'s still were polite on the air. I didn't really have any favorite artists. Still don't. I just don't have a mind that remembers artists by name, but I do remember songs. That was 43 years ago, however, so I had to review a Top 100 Hit List for 1974 to recall exactly which songs where hot that year and attach an artist to them! So here's my nostalogic list of my favorite radio hits from 1974: #1)   The Streak by Ray Stevens A hilarious song making fun of a trendy 70's craze to strip then run through a public place or event butt naked, called "Streaking."  I remember a seeing photo in the Indianapolis newspaper of a naked white guy "streaking" the Indianapolis 500 track back then. #2)  Tubular Bells by Mike Oldfield This was a fabulously beautiful, yet still

Garden Pic Wednesday: Spring Beds!

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I was working on a "first" mow today to pick up leaves and pine needles before applying weed & feed, so it can penetrate the dirt. Actually, the lawn mower can't do it alone--I had to get the flat rake out and mound the needles--then the mower can pick them up. Only got 1/3 of the back done today. It was chilly, too. High today was 56 and tonight upper 30's. Today's Garden Pic's views of the new Hydrangea bed and other front beds I've gotten mulched so far. In the deep South, where it gets so hot and dry during summer, mulching helps keep the moisture in and tenacious weeds out. Periodically, the beds need a good layer of wood mulch, which makes grass and leaf clippings I add more effective. The New Hydrangea bed The bits of green in the middle are Easter lilies. This area is directly opposite the Holly Tree in the next picture. Front Corner Bed The sidewalk and driveway form a right-angle and that right angle is filled w

Good Eating Monday: Hawaiian Fried Rice!

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Happy Monday!  I decided today was the day I was going to conquer organizing a  box full of typing paper packages sitting on top of the filing cabinet. It's a ream of paper = a box of 10 individually wrapped packages of white typing paper. Probably enough paper to last us 10 or 15 years.  A friend of ours gave us this box of paper probably a year ago and he had 4 or 5 more at his house of his own and it's sat waiting for me to figure what to do with it. So today is the day I finally made a decision about where I wanted to store that paper, so I unloaded the box and stacked the packs in the storage closet where's it's accessible, but not in that box, so the box is gone and the filing cabinet is finally clear. Whew! That's done.  Today's Good Eating Monday recipe is Hawaiian Fried Rice! What makes this fried rice special is the tasty soy sauce & sesame seed oil favor stirred into this mix of rice, red Bell pepper, ham & pineapple & gre

Friday Finds: Breath Better!

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Today, we're talking diaphragmatic breathing & how to do it. Call it "belly breathing," if you like. It's a method of deep breathing where you fill the lower portion of your lungs with air FIRST.  Belly breathing helps lower stress or anxiety and sends higher levels of oxygen throughout the body, the lymph system & the brain. I first learned the  diaphragmatic or "belly breathing" technique through a anxiety workbook I did. The author pointed that as newborn infants we all automatically breathing diaphragmatically and I've seen my share of fresh newborns as a Air Force medic and it's true. They do.   It is only as we grow older we start "chest breathing," with our upper lungs. Of course, some athletic training & sports re-train proper breathing techniques and  certainly Yoga does.  Learn to Belly Breath: #1) To begin, either lay down comfortably or sit comfortably. #2)  Place one hand on your chest and place

Garden Pic Wednesday: New Plants!

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Here in Florida it's time for spring yard work, even though snow is still falling elsewhere! We got a few bedding plants from both Lowe's & Walmart last weekend. Garden Pics today are some of the new purchases: Pictured below are Million Bells (pink flowers to left) and a   new Mexican Heather (to right) I'm particularly fond of the Million Bells. One of these is already planted in the large container garden out front. I had to add a new day lily to that same container this year and it has a orange-pink tone, so I thought the pink Million Bells would be a nice change. And New Hydrangeas! The photo really doesn't do justice to the beautiful range of pink to purple to dusky blue these heads are! I have just blue or just pink, so these will be different. If you remember, I mentioned two Azaleas out front died and I intended to replace them with Hydrangea's? These are them.  So Hubby dug out the dead Azalea roots for me, which were on eith

Good Eating Monday: Graham Cracker Fluff!

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This is a simple"Icebox Cake" made with just Graham Crackers layered with Cool Whip. We call it "Fluff," because it turns into the most delicious, moist goodness over-night in the frig! There was a local Chinese buffet we used to go to before it changed hands that used to serve a wonderful deep dish version of this and that's where Hubby got the idea to re-create his own.  It's his  specialty dessert and I've shot a photo series of him making a pan of it! His is  in a 9 x 13 pan, because it's dessert for a bunch of Army guys on Wednesday, but really you could make a smaller amount in an 8 x 8 dish if you wished. It's very adaptable. This has been a dessert favorite for our Sunday singles group for years! Ingredients 1 Box Regular Honey Maid Honey Graham Crackers  ( not low fat) 1 12oz Cool Whip, any type Directions: Step #1:    Layer 9 x 13 pan with 7 1/2 graham crackers, as you see pictured. Make sure the crackers lines

Friday Finds: Green Flowers!

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Since I used to be a florist, I thought for "Friday Finds" today, I'd introduce you to varieties of "Green Flowers," you can request in a bouquet for St. Patricks Day, whether for table arrangement or a gift of wrapped flowers! Green flowers do run a wide variety of green shades ranging from dark to light, including a lime tone citron. I've organized these from least expensive to more expensive. These are all naturally green in color. None are dyed. Green Button Mums: Fugi Mums: Carnations:  Gladiolas: Bells of Ireland: Green Hypericum  Nickname is "Coffee beans" in floral business. These are actually St. John's Wort berries. Green Hydrangeas A pricier option, these are young heads that haven't colored yet. Green Anthuriums If you want something more expensive & tropical Green Roses: Also a pricier option, these are usuall

Mama Kat Thursday: Throwback Thursday: The Unwanted Squatter

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This weeks Mama Kat prompt choice is to "share something I was writing about last February." So here's one of my favorite amusing posts from that month last year: The Case of the Unwanted Squatter The definition of "Squatter," is someone who takes up residence in a home or property they do not legally own, without authority or permission to do so. In spring 2015, I remodeled this old, dilapidated bat-house into a nice nesting box suitable for a medium bird, such as a wood-pecker. I designed it with a hinged wood flap on the bottom that's wired shut on one-side, so I could open it later in the year and clean it out. Being it's for wood peckers, I had also added a generous amount of wood-shavings, so they wouldn't tear up the box making a nest. About the end of January in 2016, I decided to empty it in preparation for spring.  So, Hubby got out the step ladder and spotted for me as I dutifully climbed up to drop and released the hatc

Garden Pic Wednesday: Spring Snowflakes!

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Today's Garden Pic is one of my favorite spring flowers:  Spring Snowflakes! It's an old-fashioned Southern garden flower with little white bells dotted with green. Snowdrops are it's Northern cousin and both members of the larger Amaryllis family. I look forward to seeing their little blooms every spring!