Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Gossip or Gobble

Thanksgiving has always been a big holiday for my family. Once my parents passed on things changed. We no longer went "home" but became separate. Three siblings going three different ways. But then two households began disagreeing on life, the universe, and everything... now I'm expected to pick a side. It's nothing new really. It's been a family tradition to disagree for decades about everything, but I've grown especially tired of it all.

I know many families that never seem to have a problem. Their holidays sound glorious and everything is perfect. So when it came time for me to decide if I wanted a perfect holiday or contention, I chose to spend the time at home. No more stressing over what everyone wants. They're certainly not going to stress over what I want,  and what I want is peacefulness. I cannot change them - yet I love each of them, no matter what.

A month ago I bought a turkey and planned to cook it while watching one of the Thanksgiving day parades. I figured by the time the parade was over the turkey would be done. Great plan! Then five days ago both parties called with an invitation. I've flipped this back and forth a thousand times, but in my heart I know staying home is the best decision for me. I haven't celebrated a single holiday with either, when there wasn't the usual gossip. I'm done.

Thursday morning I will proceed with my plans. I think the parade starts at 8:30 a.m., so the bird has to be in the oven just before then. Yep, and maybe some scrabbled egg biscuits, a little coffee, and let the show begin.

A couple of neighbors will be over later and we'll laugh over leftovers. Charles is bringing his coveted broccoli casserole and ice cream (to go with the apple pie I'm planning). Lisa is bringing potato salad and maybe some leftover mac 'n cheese. This is my family. Then - I'll probably listen to each tell the family nightmare from this year's Thanksgiving day... but at least I won't have a sad tale to add. That's peacefulness.

Your turn!
Is there a Thanksgiving celebration where you live?
If so, do you gossip or gobble around the bird? (smile).

Monday, November 24, 2014

a blustery day

It's a blustery day. The sun is playing peek-a-boo with the clouds. A little spot of grey and then, wham(!) a bright spot of yellow, and here comes the sun.

Leaves are swirling, dancing among the trees. Like a sky full of butterflies, they flit, flit, flit, then spiral to the ground, landing ever so softly.

Swaying trees, shaking their limbs toward me, how do you do? Bending low, sending forth a flurry of golden-red leaves to mix with the brown that have already jumped.

A slight chill but then a warm spot of sunshine on my shoulders. A whipping wind slips around me, then suddenly it's gone. I resist the urge to step inside and miss all the fun of this blustery day.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Who's Rafting Now?

Long ago and far away I met a man of interest.
He introduced me to his wife, and later on his mistress.
Now I don't mind a joke or two and surely love to laugh,
But one day he was caught with me inside his private raft.

We sailed along a line of clouds and watched the birds soar by.
The sun did make it's way along, caressed by every sigh.
Until the rain came pouring down, it sending us below.
Forget the raft, forget the man, it's time for me to go.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Birthday cake

My favorite cake! Sunday is my birthday and I'm having my favorite cake. I hope you can tell from the photo it is German Chocolate Cake! I've included history for those who partake of trivia. But for now let's talk about this wonderful, baking-in-the-oven as I type, cake. It's chocolate and that always makes me smile. No I don't have a recipe - this is Duncan Hines ~ signature ~ moist cake. I don't have to have one made from scratch to make me smile.

Oh the aroma is wafting down the hall to my studio. In just a few short minutes I'll remove my special birthday treat to the counter to cool. I've already sampled the icing ~ no problems anticipated. My happy spatula is there by the cooling tray. Charlie the chicken timer will give a holler once it's ready. Toothpicks, oven mitts, and anything else needed is soooo ready!!

This might very well be the last year I count. (Hahaha, you say?) It's a terrific number and one I shall never regret having met. And no - I won't tell you. I was once told, "a woman who will tell you her age will tell you anything." Okay I have no idea what that means - but I'm playing it this way. Oh wait... I hear Charlie ~ right on time. Before I go the trivia is below Charlie. I'm coming Charlie!!! ~"Happy birthday dear Dixie, tomorrow-but-we-can-have- cake-today ~ happy birthday to me...."

Contrary to popular belief, German chocolate cake did not originate in Germany. Its roots can be traced back to 1852 when American Sam German developed a type of dark baking chocolate for the American Baker's Chocolate Company. The brand name of the product, Baker's German's Sweet Chocolate, was named in honor of him.

On June 3, 1957, a recipe for "German's Chocolate Cake" appeared as the "Recipe of the Day" in the Dallas Morning Star.[2] It was created by Mrs. George Clay, a homemaker from 3831 Academy Drive, Dallas, Texas.[2] This recipe used the baking chocolate introduced 105 years prior and became quite popular. General Foods, which owned the Baker's brand at the time, took notice and distributed the cake recipe to other newspapers in the country. Sales of Baker's Chocolate are said to have increased by as much as 73% and the cake would become a national staple. The possessive form (German's) was dropped in subsequent publications, forming the "German Chocolate Cake" identity we know today and giving the false impression of a German origin.[3][4][5]

The recipe still remains popular to this day and has been adopted by baking companies. June 11 is National German Chocolate Cake Day in America.[6] Wikipedia.


Friday, November 21, 2014

Celebrate the Small Things - Warmth

Image source

This week I'm celebrating warmth.

1- Warmth - the kind I feel when fellow writers-boggers, crafters-artists, music-movie-buffs, d-i-y-ers, or foodies, come to visit and also choose to leave a comment. They don't have to but isn't it nice when they take a moment to do so? We all know that comments are optional.

2- Warmth - the kind I need in this season of cold weather. I flip a switch and the heat is on. Some are so less     fortunate. Our utility company has a program where I can "share the warmth."

3- Warmth - the kind I admire from people I meet at the stores and shops I visit. That cashier may be having a lousy day. Maybe the man at the dry cleaners just lost a son to cancer. A smile can be the beginning of warmth shared between two people. I'm glad I have the ability to return their smile. :)

This post is part of VikLit's blog hop, Celebrate the Small Things. To be part of this blog hop, all you have to do is follow the link and put your name on the Mr.Linky list, and then be sure to post every Friday about something you're grateful  for that week.  It can be about writing or family or school or general life.  This is the funnest and easiest blog hop ever! 

Linky List (switch over to HTML, insert link at bottom of post. Switch back to compose.)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Wrapping up the week - in 8 seconds!

Hang in there Teddy! We could very well win the 'Oscar of Colds' competition. Indeed! Should the International Press call we'll be here,  all wrapped up! No airport visit again, due to the ongoing cold... the sniffling kind. Going to the airport could be disastrous. Imagine a sneeze while being all wrapped up.

Last night Teddy and I stood out in the driveway watching two huge birds fly over the house. Yes, we are on one of the four flight paths that cross the city. Though we're some distance from the city's uptown area, we do get great views of the large metal beasts. These two birds particularly stood out as they were military planes - those rather plain, olive green colored ones? Even in the night sky we knew they were not commercial in nature. 

It was a frightening site! The two planes were at the same height, approximately 8 seconds apart! That means one is going to land and get the heck out of the way, so the second one can do the same. (What a night to miss being at the airport's public lookout!) Normally the timing between planes is 14 seconds. We can actually stand in the driveway and count off the time (between the planes) like an exact science... it's always 14 seconds between their landings. I can usually see the headlamps of one plane coming over my big field beside the house, while off in the distance I can see another plane coming into view. Not so with the military. They are always a tight knit group - whether two or eight planes - they are lined up across the sky. But I have never seen them so closely timed as last night... 8 seconds! By the way at my house they're less than 1000 feet over my head. 

Teddy and I are all wrapped up with no place to go. Might as well listen to some tunes. 

Olly Murs - All Wrapped Up

Frank Sinatra -Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams

Brad Paisley - Wrapped Around

Teddy's extra credit!
Garth Brooks on the Ellen Show!

See you on Friday for Celebrate the Small Things!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


Acrylic painting is something I really enjoy. Needing to distract myself from feeling under the weather, I chose to share one of my passions with you. For those who are professionals, please don't look too hard - I'm such an amateur. For those who would sing praises - welcome to my indulgence!

This first painting is done on a ten inch wooden sled. The top and bottom runners are not visible because I cut them off when photographing it. (I didn't say I was a photographer.) The friend who wanted this furnished a photo and the tiny sled. She changes up the whole house for the holidays and wanted something to fit in a very small space. This fit the bill. That's the sun behind a snowy cloud filled sky. Her focus was the big tree - and this is the result, named, "A Snowy Day."

The second painting is of a mountain ridge in Alaska. Here again, a friend sent a photo of the state she was born and raised in, and wanted a painting of a favorite location. It's painted on a 6" x 8" canvas. She displays it on a wooden easel in her entertainment center. It looks so cold. If I recall correctly, the place is called Lake Lorraine. I named it "Tranquility in Alaska."

The third and last painting is done on a 16" x 20" canvas. Aptly named, "The Pink Forest, " as that's what my nieces said when they drug me out of bed at the crack of dawn. "Aunt Dixie, you have to come see the pink forest!" They didn't tell me I'd have to climb up the side of a mountain to see it, but I did. I had pencil and a tiny drawing pad and sketched by "snow light." The colors were later guessed at because the mind does not register them permanently. But the girls agreed it was very close - good enough for me.

Well I thank for allowing me to indulge myself and share one of the best things I do. Indulging myself - not the painting - hahaha. So it's back to bed for me. Have a great day!