Monday, February 25, 2013

Fly Away Monday

 
 
True, with all the things we've been balancing these past few weeks/months, it's now apparent that maybe we were just a small part of a bigger picture! It amazes me, it shouldn't, when things work out for the best. I run in circles most days, there's so much to do I really don't know what to tackle first. Everyone I know, their life is the same. We still manage to eat and sleep, but the rest is all work right now. I told my husband I am getting superstitious in my old age. Lately I've been wearing my Grandmother's wedding band and somehow it gives me strength for the day, super powers! I can just hear her laugh! Whatever the day holds we are making progress and there are many blessings. Hope your day is filled with some happy magic moments too!
 

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Happy Birthday Nadine!

These beautiful ladies are sisters. One of them is celebrating a birthday today. I'll give you a hint. She's model tall...oh that won't work, they are all tall and beautiful! She's a sharp dresser...that's not a very good hint either since they all love clothes! Ok, this is a good one...she grew up in Rea Valley, Arkansas. That would be Nadine on the right! Rea Valley is a beautiful area of Arkansas down on the White River.

Cotter Bridge- See, I told you! (Shared from Ondria Rorie Medina)

My MOTHERinlaw, Mom T. is the one in the middle. She is the matriarch, the oldest sister and her baby sisters marvel at her good health and her strength. She is able to do whatever she puts her mind to, her faith carries her through the hard days.


Joyce Burline (on the left), is known to my bloggers as the famous "Aunt B." Truth be told, she writes as many of the blogs as I do...thank you Aunt B.!


When they are together, they are children once again. Living down a dirt road, back in the "boondocks," their parents struggled during Depression years. They remember chopping wood with their Dad and being in the kitchen with their Mom, she was always in the kitchen with a large family to feed. They remember spying on each other when they had a date bring them home. Going swimming and walking to town together, riding on the tractor. When they talk there's a closeness that comes with time, between sisters that is unspoken. They could finish each others sentences but they listen and re-live the memories.



On the 36th anniversary of Nadine's 39th birthday (get out your calculators!)
her sisters recalled some wonderful memories of growing up!

From baby sister Joyce Burline...

"My sister, Nadine, was a perfect daughter and sister when we were growing up. She was pretty, smart, well-behaved and everything you would want in a young lady. I was just the opposite so I greatly loved and admired her. When we lived on a farm on Crooked Creek Rd. she and our Mother were going to Yellville. This required crossing Mill Creek which had a low-water bridge, just a slab of concrete. When shallow water was across the bridge you could not see where the concrete was and of course it was very narrow. She had not been driving very long so I am sure she was sort of uneasy about driving through the shallow water. Well, she drove off the bridge into the creek. No harm done to
truck or riders. The best I remember they walked back home for older brothers and a tractor to pull the truck out. This was so upsetting to Nadine she cried most of the day. I suppose when you are just about perfect and you make a error in judgement it just takes the starch out of you!"

From Big Sister Juanita, some pictures to take you back a few years...


Happy Birthday Pretty Lady!
(That's what husband Nelson calls her!)

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Chicken Dumpling Soup

I've made this many times since I ran this last year, it's one of our favorites! Today is shaping up to be another busy day so I have a chicken in the crockpot and when I get home late today I'll whip up a pot of this soup. Don't tell anyone it takes less than 30 minutes... it'll be our little secret!
 
I've had to go to the dealership twice this week for maintenance on the car, I hope I don't have to go back for awhile. Akin to setting in a doctor's office, you are at their mercy and a hour drags by as you set in the waiting room with coughing people, blaring tv and kids who are misbehaving. By the time I got finished there it was after 3 and I went to Wal-mart to pick up a few things. Bad idea since after 3 is when everyone else goes to Wal-mart, when the kids get out of school I guess. I had a list, but you know how that goes... you start lookin' and then you start reading and then the next thing you know, your cart is FULL! I hadn't planned on buying a new cookbook yesterday, until I saw this new paperback publication by Gooseberry Patch. Comfort Food 101, I know it doesn't say that, but that's what it is. Inside the covers are a primer for anyone who has to get a meal on the table in an orderly time frame. Quick to fix recipes that are down home good. As I was thumbing through, I see the Chicken Dumpling Soup that we had at Stone Mill this week. OH MY GOODNESS! The recipe, I hear Angels singing...


You won't believe how easy this went together. I got home at 4:30 and it was ready when Jerry walked in the door an hour later. His favorite food, in soup form was simmering on the stove. I think I'll be getting flowers or maybe a dinner out for this little magic trick...


Chicken & Dumplin' Soup  PRINT RECIPE
10 3/4-oz. can cream of chicken soup
4 cups chicken broth
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
2 (15-oz.) cans mixed vegetables, drained *I used a handful of peas and carrots instead
12-oz. tube refrigerated biscuits, quartered *I used Mary B's frozen Butter Biscuits, slightly thawed 
Optional: pepper to taste

Combine soup and broth in a 6 quart stockpot; bring to a boil over medium high heat, whisking until smooth. Stir in chicken and vegetables, bring to a boil. Drop biscuit quarters into soup; cover and simmer 15 minutes. Let soup stand covered for 10 minutes before serving. Sprinkle each serving with pepper, if desired. Serves 6-8

*This can't be improved on much, it's almost perfect! Cut the biscuits in smaller pieces since they puff up quite a bit. They are super tender and really, really good, I was a little skeptical of the whole biscuit thing! My husband ate two bowls, that's like a rating system at my house... 2 bowls is like 5 stars! If you buy rotisserie chicken or have leftover from another day, this recipe is on the table in less than 30 minutes.





Monday, February 18, 2013

Busy, Busy, Busy!

It's been nearly a month now since I took a break from blogging. I miss it but I wonder how I ever had time to do it the last few months. One thing I have learned that no matter what your day holds, you make the time for the things that are really important. I haven't been home much, we had a nice visit with our kids in Texas. Our youngest GRANDson just turned 6 and we stayed at a great cabin on Lake Texoma, out in the middle of nowhere. We did drive in to civilization one night to Chuck E Cheese! 
 
I came back loaded to the hilt with handbags and wallets. Amy is "Thrift Shopping Queen" and this time I listed some on Craigslist and Facebook, after all there is no way I can ever carry all the bags she gives me! I haven't had that many emails and txts ever, it was like wildfire selling them! Women love a good purse and we really love a good bargain!  It turns out that her shopping addiction may not be such a bad thing after all. I sent off a check this week in excess of $200 for her shopping pleasure..
 
The bulk of our time has been cleaning and selling my Mother and Father-in-law's things. Mom has settled in at Brookstone Assisted Living and Dad may be joining her there soon. We are working toward that goal! It's funny, even though I've been in their house a million times, I had never opened a single closet door until we started cleaning out the house. I'd never looked inside that hutch at the dishes Mom had saved for years, saved for us. Linens and tablecloths, napkins and doilies, the aprons that she wore when she fried chicken for us on Sundays. The house holds memories, good ones. When Mom comes with us to help she says it just doesn't feel like home anymore though, she has moved on with her life and is now making plans to have Grandpa join her at her new apartment. She already feels like it's Home Sweet Home, that's as good as it gets no matter how old are.
 
Till next time... Joycee
 
 
 

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Ole for Jose's Party Cheese Dip

It's Super Bowl Weekend and you know I'm gonna be sharing some of our favorites from local restaurants right here in the Ozarks! These recipes are hard to get your hands on, but I will tell you my secret...
 
 
The one and only... Party Cheese Dip from JOSE’S MEXICAN RESTAURANT in Fayetteville, AR.
2 Tbsp. plus 2 tsp. butter
¼ c. diced onion
2 Tbsp. plus 2 tsp. garlic, chopped
¼ c. flour
3¼ c. heavy cream
3¼ c. milk
2½ lbs. white cheese, grated
¼ c. jalapeno peppers, chopped
1 tsp. white pepper
1 tsp. cumin
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
½ tsp. hot chili powder
Directions:
Saute onions and garlic in butter until soft. Add flour and cook for one minute. Add milk and cream. Bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and add cheese slowly, stirring constantly until cheese is melted. Turn the heat off and add jalapeno peppers and remaining spices. Serve with fresh hot tortilla chips.
 
            Perfect for Super Bowl Weekend... from Boston Mountain Grille in Fayetteville, AR:

Razorback Layered Dip
6 oz. cream cheese
12 oz. black beans
12 oz. Rotel
6 oz. cheddar cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Press cream cheese firmly into the bottom of an oven safe dish. Mix the Rotel and black beans together with even parts and drain all juices. Spread evenly over the layer of cream cheese. Cover the Rotel and beans with shredded cheddar cheese. bake dish for 30 minutes or when all cheese is melted. Serve with tortilla chips.
Shared by Doug Mantan, owner

                      Super Bowl staple... Fresh Salsa from Jose's Steakhouse Batesville, AR:

1 gal. diced tomatoes with juice
½ c. lime juice
6 sprigs fresh cilantro
... 1 bell pepper
1½ c. red onions, chopped
½ c. green onions, chopped
1 Tbsp. garlic
2 Tbsp. cumin
1 can green chili peppers
½ c. jalapeno
1 Tbsp. garlic pepper seasoning
1 Tbsp. salt

Blend everything together, add cilantro last. Be careful not to add too much.
Shared by David Sours, chef

Spinach Artichoke Dip from FOREST HILL RESTAURANT in Eureka Springs, AR.

9 oz. cooked, chopped spinach
9 oz. chopped artichoke hearts
½ lb. cream cheese
½ c. minced red onion
½ c. diced black olives
¼ c. diced pimento
¼ c. chopped parsley
4 c. shredded Parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp. salt 1 Tbsp. pepper
1 Tbsp. garlic powder

Combine spinach and artichoke hearts. Blend with red onion, black olives, pimento, parsley and Parmesan cheese. Add salt, pepper and garlic powder to make a wonderful dip for any occasion. Serves 8.



 

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