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Let’s Talk Turkey

28 Nov

It’s been almost a week since Thanksgiving and I still have leftovers chilling in my fridge.  Actually, they may no longer be chilling.  They may be actively growing hair and fingernails.  *cough*  Ahem.

How was your Thanksgiving?  Ours was low-key and laid back.  Just like I like it.  I only had to make the dressing and a pie which made life a lot less complicated.  The dressing was my Great Grandmother Ocee’s recipe which is delicious and perfect in every way.  The pie was a Lemon Chess Pie which was amazing.  Traditional?  No.  Delicious and Lemon-tastic?  Oh, yes!  I am fiend for any dessert that is lemon flavored.  But really, who isn’t?  It wasn’t too strong or overly filling and seemed to pair well with the Pecan Pie my husband’s Grandmother made.

 

As you can see the weather in Central Oklahoma was mild on Thanksgiving.  Thankfully the kids played outside while the women finished up cooking in the kitchen.  Nothing sets tempers on edge more than children under foot when a hundred things are being prepared simultaneously.

Of course once the camera came out, Jaden and Fisher were ready to cheese for me on cue.  Look at the size of that Sycamore leaf!  This Sycamore tree is amazing if not a little smelly at times.

What the heck…why not make a quick photo shoot out of a few minutes of play?

And if we’re going to have a photo shoot, we might as well make faces at the camera for a few minutes.  It’s for the sake of  posterity after all.

The best part of our Thanksgiving was eating off of these sweet place mats that the kids made.  There were eight total, but these two were my favorites, mainly because they are morbid.  Those poor turkeys.  One is about to be run through with a sword and another is being hunted by a girl dreaming of turkey ribs.  Creepy!

I hope you all had a fantastic Thanksgiving!

Let Them Eat Cake

15 Jul

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It’s that time again.  Time for another cake!  Oh my goodness, I love cake.  (Just ignore me when I’m actually decorating a cake.  The wild hair and fangs are only temporary.  They disappear once the stress of decorating is gone.)  Did I say stress?  Is it possible to love something but to also be stress out by something?  I’m a complicated lady.

This one is for my Father-in-Law’s birthday. It’s hard to find a simple yet masculine design for cake, thus I plaid it safe with plaid.  You can’t go wrong with plaid.  (Unless it’s paired with polka dots and zig-zags.  Then it might be too much.)  ;]

Passing

28 Oct

My husband’s grandfather passed away this morning.  It is a great loss to the family and has deeply saddened us all to lose such a wonderful Grandfather, Father and Husband. 

Regular posts will resume on Monday, November 1st.

A Thin Slice of the Past

26 Oct

The day after the kayaking trip/news extravaganza I got to take a tour through part of my childhood. My maternal grandmother used to live on the banks of a creek in my hometown. The house sat just off the road on a wooded lot beside one of the larger creeks in the area. It was a fantastic place at which to grow up and I was sad to see her sell it a few years back. Thankfully, she has remained close friends with the couple who purchased the home and they were willing to let our family stop by for a quick tour of the house and property.

It was thrilling. I imagine that it would compare to the sensation one would feel if they were to wake up from a dream to realize that the dream was reality.  (If only that were possible.) I don’t know how many times I’ve dreamed of the memories I made there as a child.  I’ve literally had adventures at that house in my dreams.  The upstairs attic was one of the more magical settings for me.

Together with my children, mother, grandmother, cousin, husband and sister we took a tour of our past.

The best part of the visit was realizing that the house had not changed in the least. It was exactly the same right down to the goose-print, lace curtains in the kitchen. I must confess that it made me a little misty eyed to see those curtains still framing the bay window overlooking the creek. It was such a tangible part of my childhood, one that I never thought that I would experience again.

My grandparents had planned and built the house together. To think that the house had stood the test of time as well as two major floods was awe-inspiring. You could see them everywhere you looked. My grandmother in the wallpaper and curtains, my grandfather in the work shop and it’s custom-made shutters. Sadly my grandfather passed away when I was just four.

The only part of our visit that rivaled those memories was seeing my children running about the yard, playing the same games that I had played just twenty years ago. I am glad to know that they got a chance to experience that place, even though it was just for an hour. Some of the landscape had changed due to the floods; the strawberry patch on the side of the house was gone along with a peer that used to jut out across the creek. However, other memorable attributes remained the same. Like the wagon wheel that hung suspended on a beam by the creek. It was one of the last things my grandfather did around the yard before passing away.

As well as the secret room that wrapped around the upper part of the chimney stack.  Oh the fun and mischief that was had in that room.  My cousins and I would have to suck in our chests as much as possible and squeeze squint-eyed past the brick stack.  On the other side lay a tiny room with a window looking out over the front lawn.  It was our room.  The adults were too big to squeeze their way in and it made us heady with the thrill of it.  How many children could claim ownership of an adult-free room?  None that we knew and it made us feel grand.

After running about the property and along the creek in a giddy frenzy, we finally slowed down to say our goodbyes.  We thanked to the gentleman who was kind enough to invite us in and took one last look the house. His generosity had made my first trip back home extra special. I would have never guessed that I would get to drive back to Oklahoma with fresh memories to match my childhood.

I see the moon…

24 Sep

I see the moon and the moon sees me.

Yesterday was my Dad’s birthday.  (Well, and my Aunt’s…they’re twins.)  And since this was the first time I wouldn’t be there to celebrate with him, I called and expressed my regret over not being there.  It’s odd.  You go your entire life with the same routine when it comes to certain things.  You always celebrate your Dad’s birthday at his house, you always wish that Christmas was a tad bit cooler as you stand outside in a T-shirt, (thanks, SW GA), and you always forget to wear something green on St. Patrick’s Day.  It’s tradition.  Now I find myself missing out on all the usuals and attending someone else’s routine holidays instead. 

We talked for a bit about the weather, the kids and how by the time you get to be an adult, birthdays start to loose their sparkle.  I gloated about my gift selection for a bit, since it was a deviation from the usual button down shirt and/or tie that he’ll never wear.  (As a child, my sister and I gave my Dad ties at almost every holiday and now that I think back on it…I rarely saw him wear a tie.  Oops.) 

We wrapped up the conversation with tentative plans to see each other “soon.”  However, five minutes later, he was calling me back to ask me if I’d seen the moon lately.  My dad loves nothing more than to see a full moon low in the sky and a brilliant sunset in the evening.  As kids, we would sit in folding chairs in the middle of the back yard to watch just such scenes.  Of course I’d seen the moon.  It was awesome, especially here in Oklahoma with the flat, unobscured horizon.  It makes me intensely happy that he still calls me to point out a full moon or amazing sunset.  For a few minutes I feel like I’m a knobby-kneed kid again, sitting in a yard full of grass burs and pecan trees…and the occasional mosquito. 

And this morning the full moon was waiting on me.  So, this is for you Dad.  Happy Birthday. 

Here kitty, kitty…

16 Jun

  

Click to enlarge

 

Last night my sister and I, along with Jordan and the kids went over to my mom’s house for supper.  We usually eat with her every Saturday night, but this week we felt like mixing it up a bit.  Tuesday!  Oh yeah.   

We gorged ourselves on roast and potatoes.  And almost everyone inhaled the butter beans with okra…except for me.  Ever seen a cow sneeze?  Exactly.  I’m not eating boiled okra.  Much to my surprise, Fisher actually ate the okra.  I know…and pigs flew by the window just as he did!  It was a Christmas miracle.   

After okra fest died down, we all adjourned to the living room to chit chat and to let the kids pet the cats.  My mother’s house is a cat sanctuary.  No really…I’m sure that 15+ cats qualifies as a sanctuary.  If only she could get government funding….hmm…  *stroking imaginary moustache*  

Fake moustaches aside, the cats are the important element to this story.  The most infamous cat in the house is Opossum…name such since she rather looks like an opossum.  She’s a solid white cat with one blue eye and one green eye.  Both eyes slant up toward her ears at such an angle as to make her look evil….which she is.  Of course, my little niece hasn’t caught on to this yet.   

Chloe: *Gasp*  “Kitty cat!”  

Me:  “Yes, Chloe, a kitty.  Go pet it!”   

Everyone Else:  *Muahaha*   

Chloe: *Petting the evil cat forcefully*   

Evil Cat: *Swatting at Chloe for all she’s worth*  

Chloe: *Completely unphased and still smiling*  

Me: Aww…I mean, awww.  

In my defense, the evil cat never uses her claws.  She mainly just beats you up with her furry feet.  It’s hilarious and terrifying at the same time.  I just wanted Chloe to share in the excitment…that’s all.  ;)  

Opossum did not find the humor in it, though.  She may have arched her back like she wanted to petted, but her furry feet said different.  She’s such a girl.  

Weekend 1.0

2 Jun

Oh, is the Memorial Day weekend over?  Evidently my blog didn’t get the notice.  Or maybe it’s because I was too busy watching Grey’s Anatomy reruns to sit down and write a post.  I’m going to blame it on a lack of notice.  *wink* 

Either way, I’m a day behind.  I’m sure you’ll recover somehow.

So, my extended weekend was a busy one.  Three birthdays, a family cookout & a trip to the theater to see “Shrek.”  (Oh Shrek, your grotesque green face makes my day.) 

My step-dad kicked off the weekend with his birthday celebration.  (He’s turning 70…shh.  It’s a secret.)  As you can tell by picture above, he was okay with turning 30-40.  It just sounds better that way.

His birthday luncheon turned into a day-long event full of cake, presents and a plethora of Chuck Norris jokes.  (I’ll pause so that you can roll your eyes.)  Give Chuck a break…he can’t help that he’s awesome.

He’ll be rounding off his birthday festivities tomorrow night with a free meal at my house.  (We have birthday weeks in our family.)  There’s no sense in letting a restaurant cook for him when I can handle it myself.  Sure I won’t be covered in flair, but at least I’ll have clean hands.  (Although, a restaurant would probably give him a free ice cream sundae, whereas I will not.)  Hmm…maybe he should rethink this?  ;)