Friday, January 29, 2016

Beautiful and delicious, small world and ironwork

- These heirloom naval oranges produced by a small grower, Rising C Ranch, in California are the best oranges I've had for years.  They smell so sweet and they are delicious.  And beautiful, I think.  I love that this husband and wife team live among their groves.

- I won this book on facebook by signing up for online event alerts from Andalusia Farm, the home of the late writer, Flannery O'Connor.  When the visitors services manager, Ross, emailed to tell me I won, I mentioned that I grew up a couple of miles away from Andalusia.  Turns out he was a "yard man" as a teenager for various people in my parents' neighborhood.  Small world.

- Will I ever find a good place in my home to hang this thing?  It's some kind of piece of decorative ironwork that I picked up at an antiques store, because I liked the intertwining vine pattern.  Right now it graces the top of a stack of magazines, which is fine for now. 

You can tell when it's been a quiet week - when I start photographing things around my home.  Quiet is good, I think!  I hope you have a great weekend!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Let it snow, a novelty and feeder action

- Someone at my church's preschool had the foresight to decorate the bulletin board at the entrance with a "Let it snow" theme.  We got less than 1" of snow.  Woo hoo!  But it was fun to go home early on Friday just in case it got bad.  The mayor of Atlanta (a cautious man) sent a robocall to all of the businesses in the city that said to vacate by 3pm. 

- And here it is - Saturday morning.  It didn't even stick to the sidewalk.  :)  But I stepped outside around 11pm on Friday night and loved watching the flakes fall.  It's very rare for our area, so it's a novelty when it happens.  I feel for the people in the northeast - it's hard to imagine dealing with snow like that.

- My late mother's bird feeder got lots of action all day on Saturday.  They probably wonder what the heck happened and why didn't they just go to Costa Rica!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Be still my heart!, floral and plaid and back to moving

- Spotted on facebook - recent studies show that dark chocolate might be more effective than codeine for relieving a cough.  Be still my heart!  I have a cough that has lingered, so I am happy to test that study.  Ghirardelli vs. Delsym - a no brainer.  :)

- After 20 years of using the same duvet cover on my bed during winter, I finally splurged and got a new winter comforter.  I try not to celebrate material things too much, but I adore walking into my bedroom and seeing the floral and plaid.  It's called Cape Cod (I guess the plaid suggests that - maybe Snaggle can shed some light on that.)

- I haven't exercised since November (head cold, holidays, lazy, etc.) and started back last Saturday.  A friend challenged me to one of those Fitbit  "Workweek Hustle" challenges.  Thank goodness it is over at midnight tonight!  I'm just competitive enough that I want to win this steps challenge.  Current steps: 48,275. Competitor: 47,230.  I'll let you know how it turns out.  Meanwhile - I like to give myself a sticker on my home office calendar when I exercise.  A pretty good week, even if I don't win.  :)

Hope you have a nice weekend, my friends!  I'm behind on blog visits - it's all that exercising (excuse), but will be by today or tomorrow. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Geese on the field, chocolate biscuits and friends for life

- Saturday morning was pretty dreary for a walk, but we went anyway, to a park in the community of Mountain Park, named appropriately enough, Mountain Park Park.  It was so soggy that the game fields were closed to all but feathered creatures (click to enlarge), who looked as if they might like to start kicking a soccer ball around.

- And much to my chagrin, my grocery store has started carrying McVitie's Digestives.  I adore them so much.  And I had just told friend Laura that the sweets had to go.  (After these are gone.)  These remaining few went nicely with a second cup of coffee for my morning break.

- Niece Amanda gave me this notebook as part of a Christmas present, saying that it made her think of me when she saw it.  I am so honored to be compared to grace, hummingbirds and flowers, but most of all that she's turned into such a good friend.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Almost home, grinning from ear to ear and recipe of the month

- Around 6pm Thursday evening and on my way home - I had so much time to sit at this red light that I marveled at how beautiful those bare, winter trees are against the darkening sky.

- On Tuesday evening - arriving at my volunteer place, Georgia Public Broadcasting, a young man in a bright blue t-shirt was taking a selfie at this spot with Cookie Monster, grinning from ear to ear.  It took me a minute to figure that was he, since he has fruit in front of him, not cookies.

- My baker's rack, full of cookbooks.  When I bought this thing, several years ago, I had to donate a box full of cookbooks that wouldn't fit (vowing to put them all in this one place.)  My niece and I were talking about this - we both print out recipes a lot (you can see some crammed in there if you click to enlarge).  So my new vow is to cook something out of each of those books at least once a month and I'll post about it here.  I'll start with Alice Waters's Chez Panisse Vegetables there on top and report back!  I told friend Leisa, when we had dinner this week, that vegetables are my favorite thing, so that's a perfect place to start.

It's Friday!  Happy Friday.  Have a great weekend, y'all!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Inside visitors, lentil stew and missing him

- Our temperature lows are in the 20s this week (fahrenheit) in north Georgia, so the outside plants had to come in again.  They'll be in all week.  I kind of like seeing them there, even though they are in the way.  :)

- The cold descended upon us over the weekend, so I was inspired to make the ingredients for this "soup" (which seems more like a stew to me.)  It's a recipe I've been making for a few years now, found on the Smitten Kitchen website (she adapted it from a recipe from Gina DePalma - see note below). Delicious!  It's called Lentil soup with sausage, chard and garlic.  This time I actually bought chard to put in it (usually opting for whatever leftover greens I have.)

Note:  I was reading Adam Robert's "essay" post from January 6, in which he pays loving tribute to the originator of this recipe, Gina DePalma (referred to above), who has passed away.  He made this soup with her a few years ago and described it as being "hugged with soup."  It does feel like that and what a gift that recipe has been!

from Google images 

- I felt my heart wrench a little when I heard that David Bowie passed away on Sunday.  I heard this song that he wrote on the radio this morning, "The Man who Sold the World" - covered by Nirvana.  It's a favorite song and I had no idea David Bowie wrote it.  Another reason to miss him.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Steam engine, snoozing and they're on a roll

More good things from Christmas Day in northern Florida...

 - My sister and I were traveling from one farm to another on a Christmas Day visit, when we passed this steam engine displayed in Madison, Florida.  I love to read historical markers, so we pulled over.  It was used for cotton and peanut processing until 1919.  Cotton and peanuts are still the major crops in that area.

 - Hank, watching over my sister and brother-in-law's house in Monticello, Florida.  He loves to visit the grandparents here, so he can roam freely or just sleep on the porch. 

- When I asked niece Abby what I could get great nephew Monroe for Christmas, she said he loves PAW Patrol.  They are cartoon characters from a show of the same name on Nick, Jr. network, who go on high stakes rescue missions and solve problems through teamwork.  I like that, so I got Monroe the action figure set for a gift.  Chase, Skye, Marshall and Zuma are represented here - Rubble and Rocky were around somewhere, probably solving problems.  We all smiled when Monroe opened his present and shouted out the PAW Patrol slogan:  "No job too big, no pup is too small!!!" 

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Moby St. Nick, wren visitors and satsumas

- My sister and I took a golf cart tour of their farm property in northern Florida on an 85 degree (f) Christmas Day.  Their dog, Moby, who is really getting up there in age, loves to go along on these rides.  My brother-in-law takes him at least twice a day.  He was born on Christmas Day and his full name is Moby St. Nick!

 - Carolina Wrens at my feeder on New Year's Day.  A couple of weeks ago, on a night it was dipping into the 20s in Atlanta, I was bringing the plants in and one of my wren visitors flew inside the condo and retreated to the back bedroom.  After some wringing of hands, the solution:  I opened the front door, closed all of the other doors (except where the bird was), turned off all the lights and it made a break for the front door.  I wish I had a video of it sailing up the hallway. 

- Satsumas at Whole Foods Market.  I love how the lighting inside makes it look like an outdoor farmers' market.  I texted this photo to my sister in Florida - she had a satsuma tree in her yard in the first home they lived in.  We don't see these for sale that often around here.  Beautiful (and delicious.)