Saturday, June 30, 2012

Where there is love.....

I've been ignoring this blog for a bit whilst I work out some housekeeping chores (web hosting, etc.).  I'd much rather write than housekeep.  But yet, everything that strikes me compels me to write about it.  Last night, Big Steve and I (and Pearl and Elsa) sat outside in the very late last rays of the sun, to thank God for His blessings, and to appreciate the fact that the lightning bugs were giving us a wondrous display.  Who needs fireworks when you have God's glory to soak in?

At any rate, I just went out to check my mail and was greeted with another blessing.  Earlier this year, due to a misunderstanding, Big Steve pulled out the hedge on one side of the house.  I had explained to him that our neighbor was concerned over the unsightliness of that portion of hedge.  He took it to mean that the neighbor wanted the hedge gone, and so he tore it out.  I was HORRIFIED!!!  And yet, we came up with a plan.  Now, here at the Haney Place we live a very low-budget lifestyle.  And so it was important to choose a replanting that would suit, and fit into a frugal budget.

So God heard our plea.  Big Steve was able to find a first year (small, early) rose of sharon.  I have always loved that rose of sharon, and dearly wanted one for years.  So in it went, with no fanfare, and not much thought to its after-care (all things considered, there is always a lot going on her).

So....considering it was planted in the city, on the street, without a lot of after-care....I present the blossoms on my rose of sharon!!!


Then I turn around, and am face to face with some sweet and wonderful morning glories...must have been planted at some time in history by Mrs. Newton (God rest her soul)...and again, I am faced with beauty in my world.

Finally, upon my return to the house, I take note that Pearl, one of the best dogs ever, was keeping guard, standing watch, seeing to her mommy's back.  I thought she was in the other room, chewing her ill-gotten tupperware and watching Dick Tracy on TCM....but no, she's ever watchful, always on duty...

So I'm surrounded, on this first day of my stay-cation, with life and goodness.  And I decided to thank God today that where there is love, there is life.  Even right here in the heart of a city.

Monday, April 2, 2012


So.........choke, choke, gasp.....we prepared some horseradish tonight after our day jobs.  After we got home, Big Steve dug up a few roots, and then while he was out procuring himself a chipper/shredder from Craigslist, I was cleaning, grinding said horseradish roots.

My batteries for my camera ran out, so I had to use my phone.  Ain't technology great?  At any gotta dig them there roots:

After you get those roots, you gotta peel and cut them up.  You need to grate them.  You can do this with a grater (only if you have a death wish --I kid you not) or you can do it in a Vita Mix blender like we did.  So you trim and grate those roots, and be DAMN SURE to add some white vinegar.  Those roots have a protective instinct, and when you cut or grind them, they give off something similar to the skunk in a protective nature.  I'm not kidding you.  If you don't believe me, just try it for yourself, you darned fool!

So............................grind it up real good and add some white vinegar/water.  You know when it's right.  BELIEVE ME, you'll know when it's right.  Then pack it all into jars.  And you've got yourself the freshest, most wonderful horseradish you could ever know.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Introducing Big Red!!!

I don't care how many people I spoke with this past week.  The response was always...?????....

So YES, we made a conscious decision some time ago to add to our family responsibly.  And we waited and waited for just the right addition.  Big Steve has repeated over and over again - I CAN"T BELIEVE I'M IN A HOUSE WITH TWO DOGS AND TWO CATS - I COULDN"T LOVE THIS SITUATION FOR ANYONE BUT YOU...  Ahhh...the love of a good woman...means the love extends to rescue animals, foster kids, but I digress....

I am so proud and happy to announce that today we added a most precious member to our family here at The Haney Place..BIG RED!!!  OMG - how awesome is that name, anyway?  At any rate, for those who are wanting more is tonight's video.  Mind you, it's our first night together...even so...

Bless him...I think he may have just attempted to unseat Big Steve...this is another video, lol!!!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Pineapple Angel Food Cake

This is the easiest cake recipe in the world.  It's moist, quick and barely even heats your kitchen in the warm weather.  Tuck this one away.  It's not my recipe -- I'm not sure where I found it.  But way before the internet, I made it for my kids when we lived up in the Adirondack Mountains.

Just two ingredients:

Angel Food Cake Mix
One Tall Can Crushed Pineapple

Mix together well (about 1 minute) with your electric mixer.

Pour into a 9x13 pan and bake at 350 degrees until it's done (you already know how to tell when a cake is done).

Moist, light, sweet but not too sweet.  Dessert as good as it gets.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Caramel Pecan Pumpkin Pie

Wow - we had this tonight, as the crowning glory to a wonderful meal.  Simmered country ham with home grown horseradish, potato pancakes, homemade applesauce, a lovely melange of green beans, wax beans and baby carrots, and finally the piece de resistance, a caramel pecan pumpkin pie.  Everything was freshly made from scratch, including that classic pie crust.  The pie took a few more minutes than I'm used to, but it was a day off from work after all, and the guys really seemed to enjoy it.

If you know me at all, you know I especially appreciate vintage recipes.  This one is from 1939, and I got it from Better Homes & Gardens All Time Favorites (1999).

1 single crust pastry
2 slightly beaten eggs
1 15 oz. can pumpkin
1/4 cup half and half or milk
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
1 tsp. finely shredded lemon peel
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp. ground allspice
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 Tlb. butter, softened.

Prepare pastry and line pie plate.

In a large bowl, stir together eggs, pumpkin and half & half (or milk).  Stir in the granulated sugar, flour, lemon peel, vanilla, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.

Pour pumpkin mixture into pastry lined pie plate.  To prevent overbrowning, cover the edge of the pie with foil.  Bake in a 375 oven for 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together the brown sugar, pecans, and butter until combined.  Remove foil.  Sprinkle brown sugar mixture over top of pie.  Bake for 0 minutes more or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean and topping is golden and bubbly.  Cool on a wire rack.  Cover and refrigerate within 2 hours.