Archive | November, 2010

The Owl and the Pussy-Cat

28 Nov

This is one of my favorite books from childhood. My version was published in 1968, and I remember staring at the illustrations forever. I still adore them.



22 Nov

I love them. Writing out a list calms me; it makes me feel like I’ve got a handle on things. In the last month or so, my list making has been revolutionized by this free, “simple, designy to-do app” called TeuxDeux. I’m so high tech now!

It’s also one of the reasons I’m sort of holding out for an iPhone with Verizon. TeuxDeux only has an app for iPhones, but Verizon seems to have the best service down here in the swamp. (The iPhone app is 2.99)

A friend told me about TeuxDeux awhile ago, but it didn’t really do it for me. Since then, they have done some updates, and the second time around, it’s just about perfect!

The Fall Meal

22 Nov

When it starts getting chilly, I get so excited to make this meal to celebrate. I usually have to wait ’til November down here in the south, and I get psyched. I’m serious.

I first had this soup at some friends’ house, and they did not have a copier, so I hand-copied the recipe from a magazine…maybe Gourmet. What a pain! But that’s how good it was. When I made it at home the next year, I thought it would be nice with pumpkin bread, and I’ve made them together ever since.

Kale, Kielbasa and Tortellini Soup

2 TB olive oil

12 oz kielbasa, thinly sliced

1 onion, chopped

1 c. chopped fennel bulb

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp thyme

1/2 tsp dried crushed red pepper

10 c. chicken broth

4 c. chopped kale

15 oz can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

9 oz package cheese tortellini

1 c. grated or shaved parmesean

heat oil in a big, heavy pot over medium-high heat

add next 6 ingredients and saute until veggies are soft, about 12 minutes

add broth and bring to a boil

stir in kale and beans

reduce heat to low and simmer until kale is wilted

add tortellini and simmer for about 5 min, or until tortellini is cooked

serve with cheese separate. sprinkle cheese on top to taste.

My pumpkin bread recipe has no added fat (unless you count eggs)…I’d rather make it that way and then put some butter on it. Yum.

Pumpkin Bread

1 c. sugar

1 c. canned pumpkin

1/2 c. applesauce

1/2 c. water

2 eggs

1 2/3 c. flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

3/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp cloves

combine first 5 ingredients and beat well

combine the rest of the ingredients in a separate bowl

gradually add the dry mix to the pumpkin mix and beat well

grease a 9×5 loaf pan

bake at 350 for 60-70 min. cool 10 minutes in pan.

Coming home from making groceries…

15 Nov

Did I mention that I love signs?

Repurposed, even!

This one is so fine. Such a complicated shape, and neon lights, too.


8 Nov

I usually think of ratatouille as a spring dish, but when I walked into the grocery store the other day, there were local eggplants and zucchinis sitting right there next to each other, and I needed rat-a-tat-touille!

This is one of my favorite recipes, but I’ve had it written out on an index card for about 20 years so I’m not sure where it’s from. I’ve simplified the steps somewhat- why cook each thing individually when it’s going to all end up together in the end? And I don’t do the thing where you salt and drain the eggplant to reduce its bitterness. And I use canned tomatoes! The easy version tastes just as good to me.


2 TB olive oil

2 onions, cut into 1″ chunks

2 or 3 green peppers, cut into 1″ chunks

3 medium zucchinis, sliced not too thin

small to medium eggplant, cut into 1″ cubes

large can tomatoes, including the liquid- use diced, or deseed and coarsely chop the whole ones

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 tsp thyme

1 tsp basil

bay leaf

1 TB parsley

pinch cayenne

salt and pepper to taste

swiss or gruyere to put on top

Heat the oil in a large pot. Add onions and cook about 5 min, stirring frequently. Add the green peppers and zucchini one at a time and do the same.

Add the rest of the ingredients except the cheese, then cover and simmer gently for about 30 min, or until all the veggies are cooked soft. Stir frequently.

Put it in bowls, and top with grated or sliced cheese. Put them under the broiler if you want the cheese extra melty and browned. Yum.

My cat fetches

8 Nov

Someday, I’m gonna learn to edit video and I’ll make a super action video of jumpin’ and fetchin’, but for now, here is one good fetch ’ems.

More from the woods

5 Nov

Driving to the Amicalola Falls State Park, Shelby exhibits some exciting ear action. The park has an 8.5 mile approach trail to Springer Mountain, the southern end of the Appalachian Trail.


And we liked this truck that tumbled down a mountain and got stuck a long time ago.


I officially love the Blue Ridge Mountains in fall.