Monday, December 29, 2014

Enjoying Family

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I have been busy enjoying these sweethearts! I am so blessed!

My whole family together for Christmas was a huge blessing.


Happy New Year to all!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Grateful Giveaway Recipient

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Last Christmas,  I was pleasantly surprised to be the winner of a great giveaway from Mary@ Home is Where the Boat Is. The giveaway was a sixteen piece dinnerware set of Mikasa Antique White Holiday Berries.  It is a beautiful pattern and although Mary is a hard tablescape act to follow I am giving it a shot to show my appreciation as the grateful winner. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Reflections on Previous Thanksgiving Meals

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As I started thinking about Thanksgiving coming up I realized I made pics last year and never posted them. Hope you will enjoy viewing our family meal and the pics might jumpstart your planning and decorating. My mind now is in the challenge mode of coming up with something different for this year's table. 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Hotel Deau ~ Beaune, France

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Hotel Dieu~Beaune, France, the capitol of Burgundy. The exquisite burgundian tiles are spectacular.  Hotel Dieu was founded in 1443 by Nichols Rolin, the chancellor of the Duke of Burgundy, to help the needy. It was a small hospital until 1971. This medieval hospital is now a museum.

Friday, October 24, 2014

What do you know about persimmons?

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The 2014 calendar for Fine Cooking intrigued me to learn more about persimmons.

Sharing from Fine Cooking calendar....They may look like tomatoes, but persimmons are sweet and versatile in their own way. They can have custard-like fruit with banana and mango flavors, or be firmer with apricot notes. Try them in anything from puddings and cookies to salads and salsas.

Not far from my house several persimmon trees caught my eye.
I stopped and talked to the owners and asked if I could make pictures of their trees.

They were gracious and shared persimmons with me. I wish I had made notes and could remember all they said about the variety, how old their trees were, etc.

From Fine Cooking:

Persimmons are part of the genus Diospyros, which means “fruit of the gods” in Greek, persimmons are tree fruits grown in many countries, including China, Italy, the United States, and Japan (where they are considered the national fruit). They are in season from fall through winter and are an excellent source of fiber as well as vitamins A and C.
Persimmon varieties are divided into two categories, astringent and nonastringent. Astringent varieties, such as the acorn shaped Hachiya, are tannic and sour when underripe; they should be eaten when very ripe and jelly-soft. Fuyu is the most common nonastringent variety; shaped like pincushions, they are smaller than Hachiyas and have fewer tannins, so they can be eaten both underripe and soft. The Fuyu has a subtle, crisp flavor reminiscent of apricots, while the Hachiya has tropical fruit notes and is very rich and sweet.

how to choose:

Look for fruit that is plump, heavy for its size, and vibrantly colored, with glossy skin. Avoid those with bruises, blemishes, or cracks.

how to prep:

Remove the core for both eating and cooking. The skin is edible, though you may want to peel it, because it can be a little waxy. Cut the fruit into wedges, slices, or cubes. Ripe Hachiyas are often the persimmon of choice for sweet dishes. The firmer texture and subtly sweet flavor of Fuyus make them a good variety for savory preparations.

how to store:

Keep the unripe fruit at room temperature, preferably in a brown paper bag, to help it ripen. If persimmons are already ripe and soft when you buy them, eat them right away or store in the refrigerator for no more than two days.
Source: Fine Cooking.com
Persimmon pudding sounds interesting. 
These pics were made several years ago but when I read my Fine Cooking calendar I decided to blog about persimmons. I must confess I didn't taste them because we were going out of town. I gave them away because I didn't want them to spoil. Now, I am intrigued how they taste and wish I might have another opportunity to broaden my horizons trying this fruit.
Do you have any recipes or experiences with persimmons? It is amazing how my calendar has intrigued me about persimmons.

For recipes, visit FineCooking.com


Another use for persimmons is decorative.
This was my fall blog header a few years back. The arrangement was made by a member of my garden club using persimmons. Persimmons make me think autumn. This variety has been imported from Japan. The indigenous persimmon tree fruit in our area is much smaller. I have a male tree and the leaves display a beautiful fall foliage.


Linking to Foodie Friday.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

A few days in Burgundy

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Recently, my husband and I celebrated our anniversary with a trip to France. I am excited to share our travels with you. Paris was our first stop but I will save that for my last post. I will begin in Burgundy. This pic is our hotel, once an old farmstead in the Burgundy area outside Beaune, France.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Tempus Fugit

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  1. Tempus fugit
    Phrase
  2. Tempus fugit is a Latin phrase, usually translated into English as "time flies". The expression comes from line 284 of book 3 of Vergil's Georgics, where it appears as FVGIT INREPARABILE TEMPVS: "it escapes, irretrievable time". Wikipedia
Time has flown for me!!!!

I have missed reading your blogs for two months. Wow, it seems like yesterday. I have been knee deep in home repairs, planning a trip, packing and ENJOYING the trip. Yes, my husband and I have been to France. It was a fabulous trip. When we returned our children were visiting from Texas and North Alabama. Loved having our family together again after a year. Now, I am trying to catch up. I have read a few blogs and left a few comments but haven't scratched the surface. Because I love to travel and I love to read about travel I want to share our trip on my blog sometime soon. Right now I am tired and life doesn't stop but I am so grateful for many opportunities. Life is wonderful and full. God has richly blessed me.
 Here are a few pics of our life last week.

Making cookies with Texas grands.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Summer's Last Fling

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 Raise your hand if you remember these dishes from the seventies!  I know many of you were not born then but I bet you have seen them in antique shops. Well, I still have these and it was fun to use them again saying farewell to summer for Kathleen's Dish Challenge.


 My mother always grew zinnias. I love how happy they are. When we lived in Alaska, I kid you not the zinnias I grew were as big as bread and butter plates with the 24 hour sunlight in the summer. Wish I had made a picture.
 Ok, I didn't grow these zinnias since they are faux but the coleus I added are real. The peaches are about gone now but were delicious this year.
Are you noticing the corn pieces? They are 40's Shawnee I have been collecting.
I didn't use a tablecloth because I liked the airy plain look and I wanted to show you my oak table that has been painted with chalk paint. My chairs were originally black and are now painted white also.
Is anyone noticing something missing yet?


 Keep looking. Do you see that two chargers are missing? Lol!

In the seventies, it was stylish that all the accessory pieces matched. Here you see the salt and pepper shakers and in a previous pic you can see the  matching butter dish. I have the cream and sugar, casserole dishes and salad plates that all match too. Now, I like to mix patterns using older collectibles like the corn pieces instead of all the pieces matching.
The green vase is a vintage McCoy piece and the orange and yellow napkin used as a anchor for the centerpiece is also from the seventies. The corn casserole was my mothers and was the piece that inspired me to buy a few more Shawnee pieces. You can see the casserole dish better in an upcoming pic.


I remember fondly her serving sweet potato souffle in this dish. It has personality doesn't it?

The Shawnee pitcher and cream and sugar pieces were fun to find along the way at antique shops. I have overused these glasses in many tablescapes. They were wedding presents too, but I don't know their name.

Summer foods like homegrown sliced tomatoes, grilled corn on the cob, and fresh peaches have been great. Grilled salmon and green beans are nice all year. I would love to serve a plate for you.
 Summer temperatures are soaring here in the south and it will still be summer for a while. It is strange, however, we have falling leaves already. Will it be an early fall?  And....when will orange, yellow and green be back in style? LOL!!!

Linking to Let's Dish Wednesday and Tablescape Thursday.

Wanted to let everyone know things have been hectic at my house with long overdue home projects, company coming, etc. I will be taking a blogging break for a time. Please don't think I am ignoring you, just busy with life. I will be back but will miss all the blogland fun. Bonnie

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Daughter's New Garden

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This is the view outside my daughter's kitchen window. The deer love everything she plants so she is trying different things in this bed hoping the deer won't like all her choices. Read more about her new garden.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Weekend at Daughter's House

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We arrived at my daughter's in the rain. 
Couldn't resist this shot as she gathered fresh basil from her garden.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Appetizers galore

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 This post is a collection of mostly cheese appetizers I have served in my home or at my daughter's house. Simple brie, crackers and fruit come together easily and is always a welcome and easy appetizer.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Food on July 4th

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These appetizers were delicious. My friend, Charlotte made these yummy snacks.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Patriotic Reprise

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Happy Fourth of July 2014!!
Wow, time flies.  I haven't posted a  2014 July 4th post yet. In the meantime,view several former fourth celebrations.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Who can help me with a blog problem?

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I accidentally deleted my blog roll on my Blogger side bar today. I noticed that some of the blogs I follow were not updating. Then when I clicked on their blog thumbnail only html showed up. I thought I was removing one  blog to rename it  in layout and deleted all my blog roll. I am lost without it.

Does anyone know if it is possible to restore my list? If you don't know could you recommend someone that might? Thank you. Bonnie@livingwiththanksgiving.blogspot.com

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Provencal Tablecloth Inspiration

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Sunflowers are happy aren't they? I've wanted to use my provencal tablecloth from Avignon for a while. Since this is the sunflower season it was time.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Arranging Hydrangeas

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Hydrangeas are so easy to arrange. Ball jars are great grouped together and make a statement with just a few blooms. I like them in my vintage bird cage too.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Grandchildren are special

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Our daughter's children visited us recently. They posed sweetly right before church.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Mary Grace's Summer Garden

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 Mary Grace's summer garden is a treat that I am glad to share with you today. My pictures don't do my friends cottage garden justice. It was the wrong time of day to get good pictures but her talents shine through.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Sacrifice and Service

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A local church in our community displayed flags highlighting those that gave their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan. The display is both moving and humbling.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Flower Arranging at Garden Club

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 My garden club has a May luncheon and members bring arrangements they have made to share with nursing home occupants. For fun, judges are appointed to select a winner.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Peonies and Wedding China

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I love my wedding china, crystal and silver patterns just as much now, as I did forty-two years ago.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

I have Baby Bluebirds...... YAY!!!!

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Remember my post a while back saying I was yearning for Bluebirds? I am so excited to report I have a bluebird family in my box.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Monday, April 21, 2014

New Blooming Flowers in the Garden

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What is blooming in your garden? I have clematis, knockout roses, camellias, irises, columbines, hostas, and soon will have amaryllis blooming.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Pompeii, Italy

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Vesuvius in the background. Standing in Pompeii amid the ruins I was fixated to realize with my own eyes how close Vesuvius was and zoomed my lens to get a closer view. The terrible eruption of Vesuvius in 79 A.D. destroyed Pompeii, Herculaneum and Stabiae and all life in between.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Two Special Redheads

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My husband and I were blessed last week to spend the week with these two special redheads.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Time to Nest

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The birds are busy building their nests. There is an excitement in the air that nesting time is here. The air is full of bird songs. Come sit in the garden and have a cup of tea while we watch the birds and enjoy this beautiful spring day.

There are bluebirds, cardinals, mockingbirds, sparrows, woodpeckers, and sometimes bluejays. The robins are gone now but were enjoyed for a while.
The bridal wreath is blooming as are the azaleas in so many colors. The hydrangeas are budding out too. 
The new growth on the trees and shrubs are the most beautiful shade of green. As I am sitting here enjoying the gentle breeze and the occasional humming of a busy bumble bee I just remembered I saw the first hummingbird of the season today.
Spring is a time of renewal, rejuvation, and rebirth. You can learn so much about life in a garden.
Spring is a time to marvel at life and the splendor of creation that points us to the faithfulness and majesty of our creator.
Birds are mating and building their nests. Their nests are carefully and skillfully crafted. Each species have  specific types of nests and  building habits.
We'll have a light lunch later but for now we have nothing to do but relax, enjoy our tea, listen to the chirping of the birds and watch the occasional butterfly flying by.
There is a fragrance in the spring garden. Soon the confederate jasmine will delight us with its ethereal scent. How many birds can you identify and can you recognize their songs?

I've enjoyed listening to the birds and watching them go about their day. It was a sweet time to reflect on the beauty around me and learn from the birds about hard work, perseverance and loyalty. 


White Tea Set- Lenox
Blue Tray- Hobby Lobby
Demitasse spoons- World Market
Cut work tea napkins- Estate Sale
Embossed napkins- Philipines
Crystal-  Meadow Rose by Fosteria
Plates-Paula Deen
Silverware-Williams Sonoma
Birds nests and metal bird- gift shops