Monthly Archives: August 2014

Food, Family, Friends and Laughter


Just a quick blurb. Before my daughter returns to college, I wanted to fix her favorite comfort foods. The problem was, no air conditioning, lots of humidity and temperatures around 85. But my name is mother and I aim to please as best as I can. After 4.5 sweltering hours, while everyone else had the God given sense to go window shopping and have lunch at a local pizza parlor -with AC, this was my product (yes that is sun tea and further down, that is BBQ meat).



My accomplishment, family memories to add to my life story. My family and friends were speechless. But I enjoyed their gratitude -priceless.

PS… always add a little cream or milk to your cob corn and do not boil the corn. Bring the water to a boil. Turn the stove off and add the corn. Cover and let corn steep for 30-45 mins. After the water has stopped boiling add the cream and butter. Oh and yes, fresh corn is always best but try to get it locally. Your farmers will love you. Now advice for deviled eggs. Do not attempt to make them in a hot kitchen without putting the filling in the refrigerator FIRST! Lol!


The T-shirt Memory Quilt


My pastry chef is heading back to college soon to finish her senior year. Going through drawers we found 22 t-shirts she no longer wore or were saving because they were special to her. We decided a quilt would be the best way to preserve those memories and make that stack of T-shirts useful.

After gathering the shirts, we began to cut the fronts from the backs, as logos are often on both sides. Then we cut the emblems or logos or screen print in 12″x11″ sections and smaller ones 6″x6″ sections. We then use 911ff type of fusible webbing to stabilize the fabric and keep it from stretching too much.




We bagged the sleeves and neck of the shirts and folded the bottoms and backs that had no screen printing. These will be used later in this quilt and leftovers will be saved for another project. I am sure I will think of something to remake with them 😉.


After the squares are all fused, then we laid them all out and placed them how she wanted to be arranged on the quilt. She then decided that she did not want sashing but the whole top from t-shirts. She also decided no wadding or middle but instead a brown minky backing. Are you confused about this? I was too but customer satisfaction is what I do. The progress continues…

I thought this next picture was just a tad bit funny. My daughter kept telling Chloe (our handy dandy canine) not to walk on the quilt as it is laid out in the hallway upstairs. But what is she doing? I LOVE LIFE AND FAMILY AND ALL IT BRINGS.

BTW, this was done in one day so far. I will continue and hope to get it done within three days if my back cooperates. I would love to see how you are being creative and making old things new.



We have been without AC for two weeks and I hurt my back last week. No idea how I hurt it; probably something strenuous like -breathing 😉. Last year while driving, I came to an unprotected intersection (no lights or traffic signs). I looked left, then right, the left again. It was upon that second left that I felt something pop in my neck and then came the pain! Yes, I strained a muscle in my NECK according to my pcp (primary care physician). Anyway, I am on the mend and playing catch up.

So many gardens in our area have done well with tomatoes and I am grateful they shared with us, so I decided to make some fresh salsa this morning.


What’s a little bending over to chop tomatoes, onion, celery, bell pepper, jalapeños, cilantro, celery while I am on the mend from a pulled muscle in my back. I’m a little on the tall side and often have to stoop or bend slightly to wash dishes or utilize the counter tops. The average sized people in the house don’t have this problem. Ok. Moving on. The salsa came out wonderful as usual. I try to save containers I get from stores to re-use and to keep from buying more plastic container -my portion of lessening my footprint on the planet.

After everything was cleaned and put away, I made some eggs over medium, sprinkled with cheddar and salsa. Hmmmm…brunch.


I love life in my 40’s!


My Fridays always begin early. After my devotions, I head to the sewing studio and I am still not fully alert. My husband brings my coffee upstairs to me because I do not go downstairs until lunchtime. This is my way of trying to be disciplined as I work from home. Well today I was hungry early (no breakfast. Bad. I know I know). Went down to the kitchen to heat up a bowl of soup. After the soup is heated, I decide to make another cup of coffee. I opened the cabinet for a coffee cup -albeit the wrong cabinet. This is when I discovered my mid-40s mom moment

Yep! Soup went to the cabinet instead of back to the fridge. My 20 and 21 year old are staring at me when I declare -‘just think about it. I will have to live with you one day’! I got a continual blank stare! I’m thinking that means I’m headed to a facility instead. Lol!

I have a rooster theme in my kitchen and parlor. One of my rooster wall plaques sums the morning perfectly.

But on another note, I did complete this order this morning for my military wife customer before she heads back to Bahrain with her family.

This is my 40s Friday so far and it’s not even noontime!!

Tasty Thursdays


So the intent was to write Tasty Thursdays -on Thursday evenings. Later that day we drove to Williamsburg,Va, a mere 60 miles from Virginia Beach, and returned late; and of course there was traffic.

So here we go…
A dear friend’s father grows an awesome garden and shares his hard work and labor of love with us. We made zucchini bread (used a few tsp of lemon juice and added a lemon glaze) to share with friends and neighbors. We made home chicken noodle ‘creatively’. We added tomatoes and grated zucchini and to disguise the zucchini we infused orzo pasta. That’s to keep my husband and other picky eaters from declaring the age old phrase -“eewwwweeee” 🐏🐑 (as close as I can come to a sheep).




Isn’t that a cute bowl cozy for the soup? Shhhhh….. We made that too.

We also had crock pots of tortellini soup (store bought tortellini), and black beans to make our own version of ‘Chipotle’.

But early that morning, I went out and grilled some leg quarters to eat for lunch. Got a little reading done also.


Did I mention that a grill going at 8:30am really confuses the neighbors?!?😳

My Own Pastry Chef!


imageIt is hard to believe that three short years ago, this precious child of mine would be going out into the world to blaze her own path. Her father and I sent her to a math and science camp at a regional university each summer while she was in high school. Upon graduation she was offered a partial scholarship. Her major was going to be math and she was going to be a teacher. Our job as parents was well done in getting her feet planted in the right direction -or so we thought. One day while filing college preparatory paperwork. I noticed a Johnson and Wales and Culinary Institute of America packages in the mix. I pulled them out and asked her about them as I proceeded to toss them. She stated she was just curious and just wanted to see what they were about. So I gave her the packages and went about my merry way of dreaming of becoming a college student’s parent with stickers and mascots all over my car and heading up to football games.

A month or so later, a letter arrives in the mail from JWU stating that my wonderful has been accepted to the university with partial scholarships. So I asked her why was she perusing this if she was already set to go the school we have worked so hard to groom her to attend. Her reply was “I’m good at math but my passion is baking and creating”. Now I always thought that you find what you were good at and worked with it to become your passion. The problem with this case was that I had never seen my daughter bake or cook or show any interest in doing so.  She actually loathed being in the kitchen and could not stand to clean the kitchen on her days. As time progressed we noticed a marked decrease in her interest for our school of choice for her and more interests in creative schools. After lots of prayer, conversations and watching; we decided that the decision would ultimately be hers. We would bite our nails and eat ice cream way too late at night and grant her the freedom to choose her culinary school.  She was accepted to JWU in the Fall and CIA in the Winter. Since she was ready to leave our nest, she wanted to start that Fall and so it was off to North Carolina -6 hour drive to drop of our daughter to a culinary school although she did not know her way around a kitchen.

Three years later, this bright eyed and ambitious mature young woman has graduated with an A.S. in Baking and Pastry Arts and is just one semester from finishing her B.Sci in Food and Beverage Mgmt with an emphasis in Entrepreneurship. She works part time for a grocery supermarket in Charlotte, NC. While home visiting, she showed me a paper she wrote. The professor asked the students to tell about a person who was influential in their career. My daughter chose me -her mother 😭.  She stated the she watched me cook and sew for years and thought it a miracle when I would go into the kitchen where there was only a can of beans, four strands of spaghetti and a pack of crackers and come out with a gourmet meal (my son does not view this ordeal the same way!). She also mentioned of all the soups and cakes and pies I would make from scratch. This, she says, inspired her to use her imagination to create things. I am Jim Dandy proud of her accomplishments but cannot help but wonder if I missed her cues of wanting to be in the kitchen because I was and still am a kitchen hog! She took charge of cinnamon roll duty today. While I actually watched. image imageThese cinnamon rolls and yeast rolls are so light and fluffy. She made a topping for them that rivals Cinnabon but lighter. They are awesome but I must admit, -I am jealous! My powdered cinnamon and powdered nutmeg were substandard for her -she grated her own nutmeg and cinnamon sticks!!!! 😐

Making old things new!


As I was spring cleaning, I had a garbage bag full of old sheets and worn terry cloth towels. But for the holes, they were in good condition. Since I am newly into recycling and repurposing, I decided to hang onto them. Around Easter, we had family to come visit and I realized that I did not have the abundance of towels I was use to having. I decided to drop off all the clothes to the thrift store to clear the last of the clutter and head to the department store over pay for towels at the last minute. I always look around the thrift store (I call it the treasure trove) as I drop off things. It is usually when i am not looking for anything that I find something that is a great deal. That right, I found brand new white bath sized towels with labels and tags attached. For $1.00 each, I snatched them up and ran home to wash & dry them.

Later that evening I was vacuuming my sewing studio and noticed how full my scrap fabric box was. I took the bag of terry cloths and places them on top of the scraps. That is when my brain, that never shuts off, lit up with the idea of sewing fabric to the old terry cloth towels to make towels to be used in the kitchen and brightly colored fabric sewn to the ends of the bath towels to liven them up a bit. I like to have lots so small towels downstairs to catch spills, wipe the dogs paws and kids messes quickly. Here are few…







My guest all loved my towels and all asked for some, even after I told them how them came about. Almost everyone who comes to my kitchen asks about my dishtowels. So I finally decided to make some for those who wanted them. Best part of all, they are willing to pay! I did them all a favor bought new terry cloth though 🙂 this is the journey so far …


Who knows, perhaps some will make to my etsy shop 😊 you can check to see if I have actually put some up at