Monday Pictures…Our East Texas Farm. Just a Trace of Sunshine!

Farm L

When we were at our farm this past weekend, I thought that it would be fun to take some “beginning of the summer” pictures to place on my blog. Not really a good idea at all!

 

SUN! GREAT!

 

As soon as I got out the door ready with my camera…

 

HARDLY ANY SUN AT ALL!

 

This happened time after time. 

When I heard thunder in the distance, I went in the house and had a snack or three or four. So frustrated! As it turned out, a tornado hit about 35 miles away. The clouds certainly don’t look serious in any of the pictures. Texas weather can be very deceiving!

 

My not so great pictures…with just a trace of sunshine!

 

 

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4

 

 

10

 

 

Farm B

 

 

Farm D

 

 

Farm I

 

 

Farm H

 

 

Farm N

 

 

 

 

 

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/trace/

 

Looking For A Cricket…I Guess. I Hope.

LizardConcretePoemWhite

 

I know for sure that summer has made it’s arrival…and it is not even June 1st. Yikes! Does that mean that the 102 degree weather is just around the corner? If so, I need to leave Texas until September.  I am thinking that Alaska would be nice.

 

The real reason that I may leave for Alaska…I have seen my first lizard of the summer! Staring at me from it’s hiding place on a tree. Waiting to chase me across the yard. Does the lizard in the tree want to catch a cricket…or me? 

 

My encounter with the lizard in the tree occurred as I was getting into my car. In one of the trees close to the driveway, I saw what looked like a stick moving down the tree trunk. Slowly moving. This behavior is quite abnormal for me…I walked over and took pictures of the lizard. The lizard immediately was frozen in place. Turns out the lizard was scared of me…imagine that! That lizard is bound to jump on my arm next week.

BACK OFF, LIZARD!

 

imageimageimage

 Not close. Closer. Too close.

Way too close!

 

One-Pot Cooking…Dinner by 7:00? No Problem At All!

GLORIOUS ONE-POT COOKING…A COOKBOOK BY ELIZABETH YARNELL

A unique one–pot cooking method.
Measurements and guidelines for composing Glorious One-Pot Meals for maximum nutrition.
Over sixty recipes that demonstrate a range of flavors and ingredient options.
Advice on ingredients to have on hand for the ultimate convenience foods.
A guide to weekly grocery shopping.
Instruction to bring out your creativity in the kitchen.

infusion three

OVERVIEW OF GLORIOUS ONE-POT MEALS FROM BARNES & NOBLE…

“Elizabeth Yarnell developed her revolutionary infusion-cooking method to avoid often mushy slow-cooker results and to make cooking and cleaning up after dinner a breeze. Now anyone with too many tasks and not enough time can use her technique to get dinner on the table in an hour or less, with no more than twenty minutes of hands-on prep work…and just one pot to clean. All it takes is a Dutch Oven and a few basic fresh or even frozen ingredients layered…never stirred. Glorious One-Pot Meals provides the most convenient method yet of serving highly nutritious, suppers every night of the week.”

infusion five

Honey and Spice Pork

Ingredients:

1/2 to 3/4 pound pork tenderloin

sea salt and ground black pepper (amount to your liking)

1/4 cup honey

3 tablespoons Dijon or Cajun/Creole-style mustard

1/3 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

6 to 8 small new potatoes

2 carrots, sliced in coins

15 to 20 green beans, trimmed or 2 cups frozen

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Spray the inside of a cast iron Dutch Oven and lid with canola oil. Put the pork in the pot and lightly season with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, mix together the honey, mustard, ginger, cinnamon and cloves and pour over the pork. Slice the potatoes in half and add to the pot, then scatter the carrots and green beans over the potatoes. Cover and bake for 45 minutes. Serve immediately!

ENJOY!!!

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/infuse/

Share the Link Of Your Favorite Blogger!

Share the Link Of Your Favorite Blogger!

Reblogged from Dream Big, Dream Often

Dream Big, Dream Often

share_logoTom Slatin sent me a great idea via Twitter and I am going to do something a little different while on vacation. Here is the basic idea for this link share post:

  • I want you to leave a link to the blog which you love the most (not your own page!)
  • Reblog this post to help spread the love.
  • Leave a brief description of the page you love and why you love it!

This should be a ton of fun and is a great way to selflessly help another blogger.

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The Option To Survive Despite Trepidation.

survival five

Fear and struggles in life can leave a person empty. No doubt about it. Sometimes, the smallest struggle can seem monumental. Sometimes, the smallest fear can seem monumental. We have all felt this way. Worry about small happenings can border on behavior that considers only ourselves. In light of recent occurrences in our world, I think that we need to broaden our scope. 

 

survival six

 

Take the time to look at the big picture. Think of a way to help someone in need. Most likely…there are families in your own town that are struggling to survive.

 

survival two

 

Find them. Help them. Talk to them. Survival can be a gift. A gift from you. 

survival three

 

Share a message of hope…just one step towards a sense of peace. What else can we personally do at this moment in time? Take the first step.

 

survival four

 

 

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/survive/

Your Actions Reflect Who You Really Are. So…Why Not Make A Good Impression?

charm school five

Charm School was an important class for twelve and thirteen year old girls in my hometown. We grew up knowing that Charm School was most likely going to be a part of our middle school years. The class was not associated with our regular school classes at all. Charm School was taught so that we would know how to make a good impression on others…to know what is right and what is wrong…to grow up to be “proper”.

 

Now I know that many people needed and still need to learn how to be “proper”!

 

Charm School was just like taking tap dance or piano lessons. Only in Charm School, we were expected to be total young ladies at all times…not so easy when you are still playing baseball with all of the boys in the neighborhood! Plus…playing in the creek…the ultimate un-ladylike place in town.

 

charm school two

 

Poor, poor teacher…she had her work cut out for her with our group! The same lady had been teaching the class for years and she was the epitome of decorum. The teacher gave us a quote on the first night of our class and we repeated it every week. It happened to be a favorite quote that my mother told me many times from before I even started elementary school. She must have thought that I might need some assistance in the charm area someday! I had a big brother so I was going to stand up for myself…no matter what!

 

So…THE QUOTE helped!

 

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charm school seven

 

 

Our Charm School Quote…

 

The world is like a mirror

Reflecting who you are 

And what you do.

So give to the world 

The best that you have…

And the best will come back to you!

 

 

charm school six

 

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Words for anyone to live by…especially in  the world we live in today!

 

 

https://dailyprompt.wordpress.com/prompts/impression/

A Catalyst and A Catapult. My Teacher.

kindergartenknowledge.com

Fourth Grade four

Funny how you can remember certain moments in your childhood just like they were yesterday. I remember my entire Fourth Grade year at Pinewood Park Elementary in Longview, Texas. In my mind, I can see the classroom on the first day of school and my name in cursive on my desk.

I know who sat beside me (Jimmy) and who was in my reading group. I still know my friends and what has happened in their lives…Kathy, Barbara, Grace Anne, Georgia and so many more…some in my class and some in another class. I can still see my mother helping at the Halloween party and the ghost cookies that she made. I remember that I got to help put up the flag every day. I still know how to fold the flag and the rules to follow. I remember so very much.

Fourth Grade two

All because…

My teacher was fun. My teacher…

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A Catalyst and A Catapult. My Teacher.

Fourth Grade four

Funny how you can remember certain moments in your childhood just like they were yesterday. I remember my entire Fourth Grade year at Pinewood Park Elementary in Longview, Texas. In my mind, I can see the classroom on the first day of school and my name in cursive on my desk.

I know who sat beside me (Jimmy) and who was in my reading group. I still know my friends and what has happened in their lives…Kathy, Barbara, Grace Anne, Georgia and so many more…some in my class and some in another class. I can still see my mother helping at the Halloween party and the ghost cookies that she made. I remember that I got to help put up the flag every day. I still know how to fold the flag and the rules to follow. I remember so very much.

 

 

Fourth Grade two

 

All because…

My teacher was fun. My teacher told us how much we meant to her. My teacher made us feel smart and wise beyond our years. She called us her SHINING STARS. We believed her and she believed in us. 

 

 

Fourth Grade Six

 

My teacher was the important catalyst and the catapult that pushed us on to be what we needed to be…at that time and later on in life. I am thinking that all children truly deserve a teacher who loves teaching and truly loves children. When I began teaching school, I thought about my Fourth Grade teacher, but I was teaching the little ones in Kindergarten. Still…I decided how to teach by following her example. Later, I taught Third Grade and I started seriously thinking about my Fourth Grade teacher.

 

And then…I had the opportunity to teach Fourth Grade. On the first day of school…I knew what my teacher was able to achieve. She gave a class of talkative Fourth Graders a real idea of what school could be like…what education meant. She told us that she believed in us…she told us that we were her stars…she told us that we could be anything that we wanted to be.

 

Thank you, Mrs. Pruitt for teaching me how to teach…long before I even thought about teaching school. You taught me that a child could learn and have fun at the same time.

 

 

Fourth Grade seven

I remembered that you let us paint at easels when we finished our work. I still have one of my paintings. The painting that I saved is the reason why I asked for an easel for my own Fourth Graders. Guess what! Your teaching method still works!

 

 

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/catapult/

 

 

 

 

Seemingly Adrift. Why?

 

Peaceful Ocean two

As the sea swirled untamed above the oblivious seaweed

Water engulfed every small crevice of the hidden coral reefs… 

Even though the wordless storms battered the wary Earth,

The reef’s ledge offered the assurance of tranquility and peace

To a world adrift in the seemingly illusive search for solace.

 

WHY?

 

Peaceful Ocean

 

 

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/adrift/

Tamale Pie & Green Chile Cornbread! Texas Style Home Cooking!

 tamale pie one

Tamales were sold on Friday afternoon at a bilingual school where I taught in Fort Worth. The school didn’t prepare the tamales...mothers of children who were students made them. Orders would be quietly taken earlier in the week.

 

Que tipo de tamale quieres? Cerdo? Pollo? Queso? Cuantos? Dos Docenas? Muchas Gracias!

 

We could hardly wait until Friday afternoon to get our tamales. One teacher (and surprisingly it was not me!) admitted that she had four tamales while driving home… just a little snack, you know! The principal of my school at that time didn’t approve AT ALL of the mothers selling tamales in the school. So…the tamales would be delivered right after the last bell rang and brought to the teachers by the children. There was usually so much chaotic talking and running after school on Friday that the principal never seemed to notice the sales transactions. Or maybe she was in her office waiting for her own tamales! Who knows?!

 

The tamales would be warm and wrapped in foil. The sheer anticipation of those tamales helped us to get through many a Friday! I still crave tamales on Friday afternoons!

 

I have never learned how to make my own tamales. One of the parents said that her church made tamales to sell at Christmas. She invited me to help out and in the long process…I could learn all the tricks of making tamales. Alas…we were going to be out of town that weekend. I really need to call the parent and invite myself to help next Christmas! Tamales take a long time to make and the following slow cooker recipe tastes close to the real thing! I found the recipe several years ago in an East Texas regional magazine!

 

tamale two

 

Tamale Pie & Green Chile Cornbread

***Ingredients:

8 oz dried pinto beans

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 lb. ground beef

1 cup diced onion

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon paprika

1 tablespoon chili powder

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons oregano

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 14.5 can diced tomatoes

1 cup frozen or fresh corn

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 recipe of Green Chile Cornbread batter (see recipe below)

***Directions:

Soak bean in 3 cups of water in a saucepan overnight. Add baking soda to pan and bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Skim and discard any foam from top. Drain beans; reserving 1 1/4 cups liquid and place into a 4-6 quart slow cooker.

Saute ground beef, onion, garlic, cumin, paprika, chili powder, salt, oregano and cayenne in oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until beef is cooked through. Drain drippings and transfer mixture to slow cooker, do not stir. Cover slow cooker and cook until beans are creamy and tender on high setting, for about 3 hours.

Add tomatoes and  corn to slow cooker, stir in tomato paste to combine. Top filling with cornbread batter (see recipe below). Cover slow cooker and cook until a toothpick inserted in center of cornbread comes out clean, about 1 hour on low setting. Top with cheese and chives, cover until cheese melts for (about 5 minutes).

Green Chile Cornbread

***Ingredients:

3/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

3/4 shredded pepper jack cheese

3/4 cup cornmeal

1/4 cup all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 cup buttermilk

1 egg

1 4.5 oz. can green chilies

2 teaspoons fresh chives

***Directions:

Combine cheddar and pepper jack cheese in a small bowl. Whisk together cornmeal, flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup of cheese mixture, buttermilk, egg, and chilies. Stir dry and wet ingredients until combined. Pour into slow cooker.

***Follow Tamale Pie directions above Cornbread recipe for adding the cornbread batter to the slow cooker. Remember to top with remaining cheese and chives after the cornbread cooks with the Tamale Pie ingredients for one hour. Cover and cook for 5 more minutes.

 

MUY DELICIOSA!!!!

 

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