Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Vacationing in New England

This summer I was lucky enough to be invited to spend a week with a dear eBay friend who lives in New Hampshire and whose family has a summer camp in Maine. I spent the week of July 15-22 with Sue and her family at their camp enjoying the beautiful New England scenery and weather. The photographs in my slideshow below tell it all!

Sue and I were joined by two couples who are also friends of ours from eBay. We have all been chatting almost daily for over five years and it was such a treat to finally get to meet everyone in person! The weather was so nice...we had a few rainy days, but I think I wore a light jacket every day I was there.

In some of my photos you will see some of the U.S. troops who were returning home from the Ukraine. Their plane stopped to refuel at Pease Airport in New Hampshire and the troops were met there by a local group called the Pease Greeters. The Pease Greeters welcoming committee was formed as a way to welcome and honor our troops both coming home from and on their way to serve in the war against Iraq. I was honored to be able to accompany Sue and her mother on this trip to welcome our troops back home to the U.S.A. To read more about the Pease Greeters, go to this website: http://www.seacoastonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070612/OPINION/706120434/-1/rss04

Many of my photos were taken at a private beach on the coast of Maine called Parson's Cove. Since it isn't known to most tourists I was lucky to have a "local" to take me there. It was so beautiful and quiet! Sue taught me to hum to snails....I had no idea if you hummed to a snail he would poke his little head out of the shell. Every time Sue hummed, out he came, but every time I hummed, back inside he went again! Guess he didn't like my Southern accent!!!

My photos also show my dinner date, Fred the Lobster.....he was scrumptious! I did feel a little bad when Sue plunged him headfirst into his hot tub, but before long he was nice and red and tasty. Maine lobster REALLY is wicked good!

I hadn't flown in about 15 years, but my flights both going to Sue's and coming back home were very nice and relaxing. I had reserved window seats so I got a good view of the New York skyline on my trip down.....saw the Empire State Building among other things. Coming back I was able to see the Boston Harbor area which was beautiful too. It was such a peaceful feeling flying along the coast!

Now I'm back home in Arkansas and while there's really no place like home, I think I could be easily convinced to trade a week of hot, humid Arkansas weather for another week with friends in the New England area!

Recipe of the Week - July 31, 2007

Easy Chili-Cheese Enchiladas
Recipe courtesy of Brittney Evans - Guy, Arkansas.

Fill small flour tortillas with shredded cheese and 1 tsp. of jalapeno juice. Roll them up and place in casserole dish sprayed with Pam spray. Spread canned chili over top and sprinkle with more shredded cheese. Baked at 350* for about 20-25 minutes.

Note: I'm going to try serving these topped with sour cream, chopped lettuce, tomato and onion, and a side of guacamole.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007



1 head Romaine lettuce, washed and dried
1 pint sliced fresh strawberries
1 small Vidalia onion sliced thin

½ cup mayo
2 T. white vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
¼ cup milk
1 T. poppy seed

Layer the lettuce, strawberries and onion. Add dressing and toss when ready to serve.

Recipe compliments of: Lois Bopp, Somersworth, NH, July 2007.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Our pretty hibiscus plant

Our hibiscus buds began opening last week and the burgundy colored blooms are the size of a dinner plate....the combination of rain and heat this summer must be just what it needed!

Hibiscus Trivia.....did you know?

***The hibiscus is a good source of Vitamin C.
***The hibiscus is commonly called the "mallow" and was one of the ingredients in the original marshmallow that we use to make 'smores.
***In Jamaica, a red hibiscus flower behind the left ear denotes the desire to find a lover, behind the right means she has already found one.
***The hibiscus is a relative of the okra plant.

The ongoing saga of the "ragged" lap quilt......

At last.....the "ragged" lap quilt is finished....*big smile* ! Once all of the "X"s were sewn on the squares, sewing the squares together went rather quickly...then it was trimming the edges evenly and washing and washing and washing and drying and drying and drying the quilt to get the "ragged" effect. This was a fun project, but probably not one I'll do again. To those of you who make "ragged" quilts on a regular basis....I salute you!

Recipe of the Week

Tropical Poke Cake

1 yellow cake mix
20 oz. can crushed pineapple
3 eggs

Mix these three ingredients together well and pour into a greased and floured 9x13 pan. Bake at 350* for 30 minutes or until done.

Remove from oven and poke holes in the cake about 1 inch apart with the tines of a fork. Pour a can of sweetened condensed milk over top of hot cake spreading evenly. Top with 1 cup shredded coconut and 1/2 cup of chopped pecans. Place under broiler for about 2 minutes to toast the coconut and nuts. Watch closely so the topping doesn't burn. Let cool and enjoy!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Independence Day!!!

The following article is courtesy of J's Magic (http://jsmagic.net/)

"Independence Day is the birthday of the United States of America. It is celebrated on July 4th each year in the United States because it is the anniversary of the day on which the Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Continental Congress.

By the middle of the 1700s, the 13 colonies that made up part of England's empire in the New World were finding it difficult to be ruled by a king 3,000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean and they were tired of the taxes imposed upon them. But independence was a gradual and painful process. The colonists could not forget that they were British citizens and that they owed allegiance to King George III.

A "tea party" and a Massacre" were two events that hurried destiny along. In 1767, a tea company in India, owned by England, was losing money. To save the company, England levied a tax on tea sold in the colonies in 1773. Partly as a joke, Samuel Adams and other Bostonians dressed up as Indians and dumped a cargo of the India Company Tea into the Massachusetts Bay. King George III did not think it was funny, nor did he lift the tax on tea. In the Boston harbor, British soldiers were jeered and stoned by colonists who thought the soldiers had been sent to watch them. The soldiers fired into the crowd and killed a few citizens. The colonists exaggerated the number killed and called it a massacre.

Virginia took the first step toward independence by voting to set up a committee to represent the colonies. This First Continental Congress met in September of 1774 and drew up a list of grievances against the crown, which became the first draft of a document that would formally separate the colonies from England. George Washington took command of the Continental Army and began fighting the British in Massachusetts. For the next eight years, colonists fought fervently in the Revolutionary War.

In the meantime, a war of words was being waged in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. On July 2, 1776, the Second Continental Congress presented and debated a second draft of the list of grievances, and John Hancock, the president of the Second Continental Congress, was the first to sign. The document, called the Declaration of Independence, was deemed to be treasonous against the crown and the fifty-six men who signed it were in danger of being executed.

Independence Day is celebrated on July 4 because that is the day when the Continental Congress adopted the final draft of the Declaration of Independence. From July 8, 1776, until the next month, the document was read publicly and people celebrated whenever they heard it. The next year, in Philadelphia, bells rang and ships fired guns, candles and firecrackers were lighted. But the War of Independence dragged on until 1783, and in that year, Independence Day was made an official holiday. Ultimately, in 1941, Congress declared the 4th of July as a federal holiday and it has been celebrated as such ever since..."

I wish each of you, my readers, a safe and very happy 4th of July!

HATS OFF TO MY READERS.............photo gallery!

Summertime, and the livin' is easy...........and it's also time to pull out your sunbonnets and keep your noses freckle-free! The photos below were submitted by my readers and my family.

Sue looking very Vogue

Tara's sister

Ashley stylin'

Debbie and Jill in our 70s sunbonnets

Jasper ready to ride the green range

Jill in her tam

Deb of Barberry Field wearing a hat designed by Dianne of Mama's Pocketbook

Cindy of Angel Heart Designs in her summer hats

Sunday, July 1, 2007

New Slide Show

Hello everyone,

I just added a slide show of my cottage shop to my blog page. You can find it by scrolling way down to the bottom of this page. Enjoy looking and feel free to leave a comment or rating.