Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing
My sister and I both love The Big Bang Theory. Fans of the show will recognize "Soft Kitty" and understand why G is singing it for her Aunt Rachael with the broken ankle!
Alright, well the pic of Brandon Flowers is definitely for my own personal viewing pleasure. I love his music and he is pretty easy on the eyes as well (okay, VERY easy, and, yes, we're both married so I shouldn't be looking anyway, but...
Tristan Prettyman released My Oh My yesterday on iTunes and I snapped it right up and have downloaded it into this mix. Love it.
Recently my sister posted a few summer songs she's enjoying and I liked seeing what she's got in her current music rotation. I make a new music mix every so often, load it onto my iPod and enjoy it until my mood shifts. I find that the seasons play a role in my mood for music. This summer I've been drawn to mellow music - probably due to the overwhelming heat.
Flower - Amos Lee
My Oh My - Tristan Prettyman
I Won’t Give Up - Jason Mraz
If I Ever Get Around To Living - John Mayer
Never Go Back - Grace Potter and the Nocturnals
Sweet Inspiration - Derek Trucks Band
The Longer I Run - Peter Bradley Adams
Seven Story Mountain - Railroad Earth
Harvest Moon - Neil Young
Sweeter - Gavin Degraw
Glory Bound - Wailin' Jennys
Sail Away - David Gray
Waterbound - The Fretless (featuring Ruth Moody)
Family lore has it Liss was desperately trying to come up with a well-balanced, yet quick and easy meal one night and was limited to the ingredients she had on hand (life is not always easy for a single mom with two little ones only 20 months apart in age). This was the end result. :o)
4 small cans tuna, drained
2 cans Cream of ________ soup (Liss uses celery, we use mushroom and cheddar)
1 medium yellow onion, diced
10 oz frozen peas
1 soup can of milk (I know, I know, sounds weird, but we use the can so we can get the dregs of the soup out)
1/2 cup mayo
1 bag egg noodles
Colby cheese to taste
While you boil water for the noodles, sautee the onion until just soft--this allows them to cook fully when baking. When noodles are cooked and onions are just soft, mix everything together and pour into a greased casserole dish. Top with shredded cheese and bake at 375 for 45 minutes.
(Mom, Jess, this is right, right? I didn't forget anything?)
Simple, inelegant, delicious. :o)
I loved to cross stitch, and completed a couple of larger pieces when I was in college. Then, I got married and discovered this amazing thing called the "Internet" and the next thing I knew, I no longer had time for cross stitching (husband, children, my internet addiction) and my flosses and patterns languished in the closet. Feeling sorry for them, I found a friend who cross stitched and gave her every last one of my cross stitching goodies and bid them a fond farewell.
Who knew I would be desperately needing them 10 years later? I'm unable to do anything other than sit with my foot elevated at the moment and I'm getting BORED! My lovely friend Robin suggested I pick cross stitching back up as I was tired of the 'net and couldn't focus on reading anything.
Just let me tell you, cross stitching is obviously not the "in" thing any longer. I had a miserable time trying to find a pattern I would enjoy doing and have some use for, I couldn't find a hoop to my liking, and there was no Fray Check to be found anywhere!
Leonid Afremov is a Mexican painter I stumbled upon via Pinterest. I immediately fell in love. I like very dramatic color contrasts as I prefer bright, sharp, vivid color to muted shades. His ability to capture glowing light with a pallet knife impresses me.
I don't know the first thing about "good" art. I know when I go to art museums or galleries and I see "art" that I could personally make that I am unimpressed. Four pieces of plywood painted in various shades of paint scream "The Emperor's New Clothes" to me. But what do I know - I have no art work hanging in a professional art gallery. I know what I like and that is that.
I first saw a painting by Leonid Afremov titled "Where Dreams Come True" and I knew immediately that if I could find a large enough print of it I would buy it. I had no luck of finding it. The pallet knife creating the colors in the trees is really compelling to me. I found another painting of his called, "Stroll In the Fog" that I liked very much as well and I was able to buy a print of it in a gallery wrapped canvas. I now have it hanging over my fireplace and I cannot express the pleasure I get seeing it every day.
As my sister just seriously broke her right ankle and had surgery on it yesterday and my mom is there helping her out for the next couple weeks, I think I'll be holding down the fort over here at FYB. My niece's 5 year Heaven Day is on Thursday this week, so the entire family is already feeling pretty emotionally raw anyway. My sweet sister needs not one more bad thing to come her way in any July for the rest of her life. And can I also just add Syria, Syria, Syria. Oh, and this colossal heat wave (...climate change anyone ?) that is making me stir crazy inside with my kids which is sacrilege for summer. Anyway, I thought a post about my yearly planting failures would fit right into the general mood I've been carrying around with me.
I'm no expert gardener but I've messed around enough with various plants that at this point I typically expect plants to behave as advertised if I am giving them at the minimum the care conditions and appropriate watering that they need. That means if the tag reads, "full sun, sandy or clay soil" I expect the plant to be pretty carefree. This has not been the case with May Night Salvia. What kills me is that I see this growing in plenty of other places in which I know no one is taking any care at all with it and it looks beautiful.
Mine don't look like this because they have withered and died. Mine are brown and shriveled. They were planted in sun, in leaf compost, well mulched and are watered slow and deep every 3 days on a drip system. I simply have no idea what happened here.
Next are the Golden Jubilee tomatoes I tried this year. I have grown lots of varieties over the years, most I've started from seed myself. This year with my husband traveling an insane amount for his job (read M-F) while homeschooling my oldest and taking care of my 4 and 2 year olds, I decided to just buy seedlings and hope for next year. I bought 8 seedlings, Golden Jubilee being one of them. She actually got lucky enough to be planted in an Earth Box. So calcium or uneven watering should not be an issue at all. Somehow this lady has given me loads of tomatoes and every single one has the most pronounced blossom end rot I've ever seen on a tomato plant. Sure, I get a little every year here and there and never like this. I'm almost ready to pull the plant and just dump it. Nothing is usable on the fruit. Ack. So frustrating!
My father in law and husband are big wine aficionados, and during the 12 years I've been married I've learned to appreciate and enjoy wine as well. I have had Angeline Pinot Noir on several occasions that my in laws have hosted and it is superb. Even better it is well priced.
I prefer very dry white wine. I was happy to find an Angeline Sauvignon Blanc at Wegman's the other day. We paired it with garlic and butter dressed scallops over pasta and a light salad of tomato and cucumber tonight. It is a fresh, crisp wine that is very enjoyable. Highly recommend.
I love living in a small town. And there is little better than a small town parade, the kind of parade where anyone who wants to can join in. Today I braved the 90-degree weather to attend Blacksburg's annual Fourth of July parade. I found a shady spot, sat down and enjoyed myself thoroughly.
Blacksburg is home to a large research university with 28,000 students. But, in the summer most of the students are gone and we are just a homey little place. During these months we bump into all our friends and acquaintances as we make our way downtown. Whether it is a movie (with free popcorn) for $4 at the Lyric on Monday night or having a bite to eat at the Cellar, I am guaranteed to run into someone I know The same cannot be said the rest of the year.
So, friends, here are a couple of photos that illustrate the small town America is still alive and well.
Yes, yes, I know, I know, I owe you two more batches of daylilies. But, I got distracted! As most of you are aware, summer is not my most favorite season. I loathe the heat and humidity, the soaking in sweat the minute you walk outside, the mosquitoes, the blistering heat of the seats in the car...I could go on and on.
However, I've been trying to embrace the heat and misery and simply enjoy the moment and being in it. It's been a struggle, but I'm working on it. ;o) We went out for ice cream tonight and I didn't even think about the fact it was so hot the ice cream was dripping faster than we could lick it. I swear! Everyone around me was mentioning it, but I was simply enjoying my ice cream. :oP
I was thinking of my extreme dislike of summer and decided to try to find things to enjoy about summer, and lo and behold, I came upon Michael Franti & Spearhead and their song "Say Hey (I Love You)".
Holy smokes is it catchy and pop-y and so summery. Then, I found "The Sound of Sunshine".
Again, another summery fun and bubbly song. I'm sure I'm so late to the game with these guys, but when I find something fun, I have to share. :o)
And, speaking of summer, tomorrow is July Fourth. We're having a family picnic with Nana and Pop and I was put in charge of dessert. Have I mentioned it's hot here? I mean, really really HOT? No? Well, it is. Trust me. :oP Sooooo, I wanted a light, cool, refreshing dessert and immediately went to Lemonade Cake. Here's the recipe:
1 box yellow or lemon cake mix (since I'm a citrus junkie, I go for the lemon)
1 box instant lemon pudding
3/4 cup water
3/4 cup veggie oil
1 small can lemonade (I typically use a regular size can)
3/4 cup granulated sugar (I double it--see above)
Preheat oven to 350. Combine the first five ingredients. Pour in greased 9"x13" pan and bake for 45 minutes or until done.
Mix lemonade and sugar and microwave for one minute. Pour over cake while hot. (I typically poke some holes in the cake before pouring on the lemonade, and don't use all of it when I use the regular can.) Serve chilled.
I cannot express how quick and easy this cake is, nor how delightfully refreshing on a hot day. :o)
Enjoy your summer! I would LOOOOVE it if you would share your quintessential summer songs and recipes as I'm trying to do my best to make the most of this most miserable time of year. ;o)
And, as many of you know (and are probably experiencing), we are ROASTING here on the east coast. It was HOT Friday morning. But, that didn't deter us. We arrived, got our free daylilies (Miss Tinkerbells for Lissie, Lil and me, and a Sparkling Orange for Beanie) and began touring the grounds. I could have looked all day they were all so beautiful. Truly.
However, given the heat, and the fact we were there with a six year old and a two year old, alas, our visit was only about an hour and a half long. I snapped as many photos as I could of all the daylilies that caught my (or Liss's) eye. I find that I'm really drawn to corals, oranges and reds, and also like pink-ish ones. I'm not as fond of a startling eye zone, and really like blooms that are full and ruffled along the edge, preferring blooms that are about 5"-7". Here is the first batch of daylilies I loved.
You know what, I could make comments about all of these guys, but I think I'll just let the flowers and photos speak for themselves. :o)
I'll post batch two tomorrow. :o)