Monday, December 28, 2009

Chanukah Latkes ... huh?!

hey y'all!

question: how much leftover cornbread dressing and mashed potatoes can one girl eat before she swells up like a balloon and blows away in the wind? or more like sinks like the titanic?!

false. the answer is ... oh never mind. it was rhetorical. my point being, i'm getting mighty damn sick of the leftovers. they are good, check. they are EASY, check. they are available and plentiful, check check.

but please. enough is enough!

i think at this point it's the old "don't waste food" philosophy of my mother and my mother's mother.

ANYways, christmas is over (thank God. don't get me wrong ... i love and adore and worship the baby jesus. really.) but the food won't. go. away.

i tend to make too much food. but then, everyone loves my dressing. seriously. people come from far and near (almost like they can see a bright shining star above my kitchen) to get a taste of my dressing.

and yes, it is that good. i'm not bragging ... it's my mom's recipe. and probably her mom's and her mom's.

i'd love to share it with you, but i can't because it's a family secret. okay, i could. but then i'd have to kill you. and that would get all messy and icky. who wants that during the holidays? exactly. not me.

but here's a lil hint: make a big ol' batch of cornbread from scratch (none of this pansy boxed mix stuff) and then you're gonna add lots of chicken broth.

you'll need to find one husband (this is the trickiest and most difficult part of the recipe) who is willing to chop and cut up all the veggies (celery, green onions, parsley) and boiled eggs for you.

saute all veggies in a pound or so of pure butter (NOT oil, NOT fake butter, NOT any substitute), add yummy spices such as your garden variety salt and pepper, garlic, onion, sage (rosemary and thyme? no.).

this was like a mini-christmas miracle this year! in prepping the celery for dear hubby to chop, i whacked off (ahem) the stems all together. i nearly cried when i saw the pretty rose that it made! funny how the little things can make us happy.

and well, before you know it, you have a big ol' pan of cornbread dressing. you do need to bake it (after smushing all ingredients together) for a couple of hours, covered. you should have enough to feed a small third world country. or, your family. with lots and lots left over to eat forever. and ever. hallelujah.

but enough about dressing. i did something insanely absurd today. i had a plethora of potatoes (mashed) left over and a crazy ass creative streak ... at the same time. so being a southern baptist (born and bred), it only made sense to whip up a batch of latkes using all those mashed potatoes.

okay, right there we had our first problem. you don't make latkes (NOW i know this) from mashed potatoes. you grate the potatoes and fry them up immediately. but apparently, a non-jewish texas gal, who doesn't have the sense to google a recipe before she tries it, uses mashed potatoes.

it finally occured to me that my potatoes needed something to hold them together. doh! i added egg and milk and flour and that pretty much did the trick

fry them in canola oil (because hell, we want this to be healthy, right?!) until they're crispy or light brown. flip them once. or twice if you're OCD and need to do things in even numbers.

take a quick break to boost your energy levels ... a reese's peanut butter cup has lots of protein to get you through all this cooking. OR ... you could "drink your gin and tonic-ah, and smoke your marijuan-icah." ~~adam sandler

drain the latkes on paper towels. mine came out mighty greasy. one roll of bounty should do it.

they didn't turn out too bad. some were crispy, some were soggy. some fell apart, some stuck together. some were bland, some were spicy. kind of like how a family is when we're all together at christmas. a little bit of everything all smooshed up together.

latkes, sitting pretty on a vintage rose plate

serve up the latkes (as if i know) with a big ol' bowl of fresh fruit!

hope y'all had a wonderful christmas and that your new year is full of love, hope, peace and good health.

love and hugs,
terry lee
i got another baby for christmas! a pink lady thingy. thanks tara!

a shot of our almost white christmas. stop laughing, you yankees! :-)

Monday, December 21, 2009

We Need a Little Pink-mas!

hey y'all!

against my better judgment, i went out into the wild world of holy holiday hell, also known as The Mall. okay, it really wasn't all that bad because we (the FAGs) were there to see a movie ... after a little treasure hunting at the temple GW bargain barn (let me add here that it's an honest-to-goodness building with heating. not an actual barn like some of the others).

anyways, we all left the barn with trinkets, treasures and geegaws galore in our arms, happy but hungry. so after a not-so-quick discussion (!!) about where to eat, factoring in the time before the movie started, we finally landed ourselves at fuddruckers, inside The Mall.

eat. eat. eat. as i said earlier, we were hungry. hamburgers and fries around the table, except for tara (honorary FAG for the day) who ordered a healthy (!!) grilled chicken salad. hmmmph.

got to the movie in plenty o' time. that means early enough to have our choice of seats. now let me explain something. when we go to the movies, it's quite the ordeal. it's imperative that we arrive early so as to procure the "rail seats". and by rail seats i mean the ones on the front row of the upper section which have the rails in front of them. that way, we have something on which to prop our feet.

i mean, do you know how uncomfy it is not to prop your legs up during the movie?? and have you noticed how the people in front of you get real touchy if you use the back of their seats?! sheesh.

so we walk in (okay, with some slightly contraband snacks stashed away in our satchels ... shhh!!!) and to our surprise, this theater has no. rail. seats!! that's The Mall for you.

anyway, we adapt because we are the FAGs and settle in for the show.

an hour and a half later, i wake up and it's time to go home. heh heh. nah, not really. the movie was cute. honestly. but i was mighty tired after rummaging through the bargain barn bins and then eating a big ol' bacon cheeseburger with fries. oh, and a white chocolate chip macadamia nut cookie. and sweet iced tea. for the uninitiated, this is also known as fuddruckers world's greatest deal meal.

as a going-home treat, we drove through mickey d's and ordered small milkshakes for the four of us. it was, as always, a special time of sharing laughs, tears and love among good friends. good times ... good times. a very special future christmas memory for me. thanks, girls.

love and hugs,
terry lee
tara and jannetta at fuddruckers

bonnie and tara ... the light was too bright for bonnie. heh heh

The Mall's cmas tree and santa area. looks like loads of fun.

boop boop de boop! betty reigns supreme over the soda fountain at fuddruckers

the official FAG ring photo. FAGs RULE!

okay, here are my GW barn treasure finds ... first up, a sweeeeet pink blingy necklace for a whopping 50 cents!

gorgeous rose-trimmed plates!

four killer melmac saucers with pink roses on them. oh. my. gawd.

this sweet thing smells heavenly!! a cake candle that i got for 50 cents (this was found at a yard sale about a month ago)

but this lil lovely was at the barn, for a quarter. lovely blingy votive holder

okay, hang on tight 'cause i'm switching gears now. wanted to share a couple of my recent projects. y'all remember this old thing? ugh. found it at a yard sale for $1. i knew it had potential. it's very heavy and ornate. hated hated hated that icky red velvet center piece.

ta da! here's the re-do. painted the frame antique white, decoupaged victorian-esque pics on the background, covered the red velvet with some pink material and then blinged it all up. i rather like it now.

a close up of one of the small frames

i ditched the lil picture in this frame (didn't like it) and used this one instead (found on the interwebs).

i made this lil collage for my daughter tara. she really does dream in pink! :-)

she loved it.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Lydia, oh Lydia

hey y'all,

well, i've added a few more cmas decorations around the house but managed to keep it all under control ... and simple. that's not to say that it still won't be until valentine's day when i finally get them all down.

anyways, since i can't think of any funny, touching, silly or otherwise interesting stories to share today, i'll just get right to the pics.

enjoy! this is christmas on lydia (my house, not the tattooed lady!).

love and hugs,
terry lee
gorgeous vintage stocking from sue

fluffy pink cmas tree in front hall to greet holiday guests

underneath the tree, pretty scrolled music papers and a vintage picture of three young children (yes, it's all symbolism)

it's a marshmallow world! some of you miGht remember these lil Guys from last year. found them in salado and fell in love immediately. marshmallow snowpeople!!!! pink!!!

pink poinsettias (from belinda) are sitting pretty!

yes. yes i did. i wrapped lights around rosita. she was feeling a little left out of the festivities ...

so i wound some cute lil pastel lights all around her, ummm, bust. bosom. whatever. she seems happy and it really lights up her bling!

sweet pink handmade wreath with a "joy" ribbon, hanging from an old wooden chair i found for $1.

another closeup of my silver baby

my mantel, all decked out (except i still can't find the stockings!!)

another view of tree, including the piano

a great turquoise ornie hanging from an even greater collage (by sue)

a box of "texas trash" waiting in lil gift baggies. if you've never heard of it, it's basically a chex-mix type combo, except you add whatever else you want to the mix (cashews, walnuts, peanuts, cheese its, twigs, oyster crackers, bugles, etc) and then mix it all up with bunches of oil (or butter) with salt and spices. bake at 250 degrees for 2 hours, stirring every 20 minutes. ack!! yeah, it's a lil bit o' work, but worth it! i add personalized gift tags that i create and print at home. makes great little gifts!

a lovely turquoise vintage bowl (thanks jannetta!) filled with vintage turquoise ornies. love this simple yet sweet look.

another view.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Oh by Gosh, by Golly!

hey y'all,

finally. the christmas tree is UP.

after quite a bit of searching, struggling, sweating and cussing (on my part), matt and i finally got the son of a ... er ... tree, erected and assembled.

and by erected, i mean jiggling and manipulating (!!! ... i know what some of you are thinking) the stand so that the tree would stay in place, semi-securely.

okay, let me back up. none of this was in the plans. not that i really had any plans, per se. except to forage in my garage for the pre-decorated and pre-lit christmas tree that i've used for the past few years.

but as i was foraging, i stumbled upon a silver christmas tree that i bought last year at the GW bargain barn, after christmas. funny how hoarders (hi sue!) forget what we've bought. out of sight, out of mind. at least in the case of my feeble mind.

anyhow, i do remember thinking it'd be fun to have a silver christmas tree because i was raised with one. it was the tree of my childhood christmases. and it was just standing there, begging me to take it home. for $3. so i crammed it into my camry, shoved it in my garage and promptly forgot about it.

until yesterday.

matt and i managed to get all the pieces in the house and honestly, i wasn't sure we could make it happen. i thought i remembered it all in one piece, but geez, what a frickin' mess we were facing.

i assigned matt the job of separating and organizing the branches by size, etc. while i worked on the damn stand. yes, it was damned. trust me.

it soon became painfully obvious WHY this tree was donated to goodwill. the stand was wonky and well, just wouldn't work. no matter how hard we tried or how much i cussed it.

we ended up using another tree stand that i had acquired this year from the yard sale of fellow FAG, jannetta. that's when i realized that it wasn't the stands that were wonky, but the tree itself.

however, with some ingenious resourcefulness and execution (think stuffed dishtowels, blocks of wood and lots of praying along with the cussing), we were finally able to stablize the tree. at least enough to finish assembling the branches and decorate the blasted thing.

why?? why??? why?!?!?!? i don't know. as i told matt when he asked me the same question, it started as a sweet sentimental project ... having a silver cmas tree again. but it evolved into a battle of wills ... the tree versus me. a matter of principle. okay, an obsession of not losing to a stupid, crazyass mess of silver and plastic and metal.


we WON!

evidence provided below. heh heh

love and hugs,
terry lee
yes, here it is, in all its alleged glory. honestly, i was pleased with the outcome. even though we still don't have a topper for it. but who says it needs one?! society?! i shall not bow to the pressure. unless of course, i find something simply perfect and yummy for it!!

do you see what i see?! yes! the vintagesue ribbons!!

they look precious as garland on the tree!

a touch of vintage yumminess adorning my tree (including the vintage pink ornaments!)

yes, i stuffed pretty pink roses in my tree. why not?

pinkness, vintageness, pearliness ... makes for a yummy tree. i guess it was worth it. :-)