This Christmas collection of pretty pictures, delightful treats, and Christmas at home is a visual to you, from me gift that hopefully fills the eye and the heart with the most wonderful time of the year sights of the season.
Gathering together to feast, family, and friend during the holidays or just because on a Monday in cozy spaces with good food (fancy schmancy or crackers and can cheese) is rooted in connection, love, and celebration of relationship.
Speaking from years of experience, the kitchen is about to be a hot spot of holiday activity. Music is a must, quality kitchen tools and gadgets essential, organization the sous chef to friend, and the taste of Thanksgiving present and accounted for.
Louisianans do love to do delicious fried turkey when the weather turns cold and the good holiday times roll.
Country Living – Photography by Johnny Miller
1½ tbsp. kosher salt
1½ tbsp. smoked paprika
1½ tsp. garlic powder
1½ tsp. onion powder
1½ tsp. fresh ground pepper
1¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
1 (12- to 14-pound) whole fresh turkey
Peanut oil (about 3 gallons)
Stir together first 6 ingredients. Remove giblets and neck from turkey, and discard. Drain cavity well; pat entire turkey dry with paper towels.
Loosen and lift skin from turkey with fingers, without totally detaching skin; generously spread seasoning under skin. Carefully replace skin and secure with wooden picks, if desired.
Sprinkle and rub remaining seasoning inside cavity and on outside of turkey. Let turkey stand at room temperature while oil heats.
Meanwhile, pour oil into a deep propane turkey fryer 10 to 12 inches from top; heat to 350°F over a medium-low flame, according to manufacturer’s instructions (about 45 minutes).
Place turkey on fryer rod. Carefully and slowly lower turkey into hot oil with rod attachment.
Fry 35 to 45 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion of thigh registers 165°F (about 3 minutes per pound plus an additional 5 minutes. Keep oil temperature between 300°F and 325°F). Remove turkey from oil; drain and let stand 25 minutes before slicing.
Preheat oven to 350°. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil, and add asparagus. Top with canola oil, salt, and pepper, and brush evenly with basting brush. Bake until tender, 8 to 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, add water to a large saucepan, and bring to a simmer. In a stainless steel bowl, add egg yolks, lemon juice, salt, and cayenne. Hold bowl over simmering water making sure bottom of bowl does not touch water, and whisk vigorously until volume of egg mixture doubles. Slowly whisk in melted butter until sauce is thick and combined.
Remove from heat, and stir in crawfish. Serve immediately over asparagus.
Shall we never forget the fateful attacks against our nation on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 (9/11).
Has it really been 20 years?
I remember it like it was yesterday, and as time marches on my memories surrounding that day remain crystal clear.
Katie Couric relating to the viewers details too horrific to imagine, too grievous to ignore, too important to forget.
Shared phone calls of disbelief.
Telling Dave the Builder I knew the towers would collapse based on the knowledge of detonation practices learned from studying Las Vegas hotel implosions.
Discussions with other parents of how to explain the events of the day to our children in an honest yet measured manner as not to scare and upset their hearts and thoughts any further than the attacks in the name of pure evil this morning presented.
We revere 9/11 as a day of remembrance and reflection; a day Americans come together in reverent thought, solemn moments of silence, ringing of bells of remembrance and prayers for comfort and strength.
Life as Americans knew it up to that point forever changed on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 at 8:46 a.m. EST.
9:59 a.m.EST– Fifty-six minutes after impact the South Tower of the World Trade Center collapses in a mere 10 seconds. More than 800 people inside the South Tower and the surrounding area of the building perish.
10:03 a.m.EST– United Airlines Flight 93 crashes near Shanksville, Pennsylvania killing 40 people on board the aircraft.
The hijackers are not included in this number, and rightfully so.
Crisp air, nature’s bounty, and a hot glue gun is all the inspiration needed to get the DIY fall decor project ideas flowing.
The little apple candle wreath that could is falls into my PhD (Project half Done) studies.
Believe me, the faux apples are not as red as they appear in the images.
They’re red alright, but not quite as bright red as seen in some of the images.
If I could get the lighting right on both space and camera, I’d be dangerous.
DIY wreath projects need not be a complicated endeavor.
Where’s the fun in that?
For this particular project I chose a Styrofoam wreath form.
Remnants leftover from the umpteen burlap bags used for everything from placemats to gift bags came together to base wrap the wreath in order to cover the Styrofoam.
Hot glue gun used for this step.
Striving for a more polished look than that of the rustic burlap bags, I wrapped the entire form with burlap ribbon purchased from Dollar Tree, pinning the ribbon with a few straight pins to secure into place.
Grab a paper or download a Michaels coupon and let the DIY fall decor project ideas savings begin.
Simple elegance comes to a door or chair frame near you by way of a bag or two of potpourri, a grapevine wreath, your favorite color, texture, and pattern ribbon, and the usual wreath making tools and glue gun to hold fall fabulous all together.
Simple instructions of hot gluing potpourri pieces to wreath and topping off the look with a bow in your choice of ribbon.
Laura of Garden Answer posted another wonderful fall wreath how-to video giving us five different options to choose from.
How fall flipping cute is the owl wreath?
An assortment of fall leaves.
Small craft gourds.
Dried and/or fresh floral stems.
Decorative owl figure.
Laura uses echinacea, rose hips, hydrangea, clematis, sedum, vines, pine cones, autumn leaves, and a most darling owl.
Ringing out the old year and ringing in Happy New Year 2019 in style with a performance of Auld Lang Syne by the legendary Rod Stewart.
Talk about classic style!
Robert Burns’ Scottish poem written in 1788 and set to a Scots folk melody, Auld Lang Syne is the traditional musical ode to New Year recollecting events over the year, thoughts of old friendships, nostalgia, old times, and days gone by.
As seen in the video, the long standing Scottish tradition is to sing Auld Lang Syne just before the stroke of midnight with everyone sitting or standing in a circle holding hands, arms crossed so their left hand is holding the hand of the person on their right, and their right hand that of the person to their left.
Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians popularized Auld Lang Syne as it became the traditional song of New Year played immediately after the ball drop in Times Square.
My sister-in-law, a staunch New Year’s traditionalist, rings in the New Year with a Happy New Year phone call to us complete with Guy Lombardo’s version of Auld Lang Syne playing in the background.
Should old acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind? Should old acquaintance be forgot, and old lang syne?
For auld lang syne, my dear, for auld lang syne, we’ll take a cup of kindness yet, for auld lang syne.
Dave and I wish each of you a very Happy New Year 2019!
May New Year 2019 bring you joy, health, blessings, happiness, good fortune, inspired projects, and beautiful surroundings.
Rosemary is an aromatic evergreen of Mediterranean origin, an herb that pairs well with poultry, pork, lamb, fish, breads, vegetables, tomato based sauces, soups and infused oils. French and Italian dishes especially benefit from the robust seasoning. Rosemary plants thrive in hot and dry climates.
I am seriously entertaining the thought of using this carrot planter as the focal point of my indoor herb garden.
A search and source session for the hurricane lanterns Ina Garten uses came up empty handed, but look at what I did find.
Being born, raised and living the outdoor living life in Louisiana, the word hurricane typically is not equated with beauty, but this gorgeous hotel glass hurricane with rope and burned copper detail is a beauty!