Monday, November 26, 2012

Thankful for Trusty Recipes

We didn't do much special for Thanksgiving. We went over to the neighbors for a bit, then came home to roast a turkey breast and watch football.

Of course, I couldn't show up at the neighbors' cabin without bringing anything, so I made these little handheld cranberry pies. Aren't they lovely? It was my first attempt at making homemade pie crust (Mixed by hand, mind you, not by food processor! Take THAT, Pioneer Woman!) I have to say, I impressed myself. These tasted like little gourmet Pop-Tarts, only way better. And yes, they are all gone now. And yes, I'll be making them again.

P.S. Not a day goes by -- OK maybe one, but not two -- that I don't tell Mason how much I love my new kitchen.

P.P.S. I really hold nothing against the Pioneer Woman. Just seething jealousy perhaps. (Mason can't stand her, though, for what it's worth.)

P.P.P.S. And, yes, it was tank-top weather here last week.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Boots and More Boots

For those who've visited, you know that I have traded in all my nicer footwear and now live almost exclusively in Wellies. You know, rubber boots. I wear them on hikes and walks, while gardening or even just walking the paths around the house when I first wake up in the morning -- surveying my empire. 

In the nearly two years we've lived here, I've gone through four pairs. Amazing, I know.

I've been partial to the dusty pink ones from Tractor Supply, but they do seem to wear out quickly. See those cracks across the top of my arch? Not so good when wading the local creek or watering plants or digging in dirt. (Not to mention they lose their snake-proofness.) So this time 'round I forked over an extra $10 for this brown "kids" pair from the Sportsman's Warehouse. Oh good lord. I can still remember those days when I shopped at Nordstrom and Banana Republic. How far I've fallen ... or is it how far I've come?!

I sure do love me my boots. So when I was in Texas, I picked me up some I can wear into town. I found these red boys' cowboy boots at a thrift store. I thought they were a bit pricey at $15, but lemme tell you, I can't wear them into town without getting a compliment on them. They're nothing special, except to me, maybe.

Unrelated notes: See that sunshine in that top photo? It's been gloriously lovely here lately. Supposed to hit 70 on Thanksgiving. Now there's something to celebrate! Enjoyed that sunshine thoroughly while planting 100 daffodil bulbs the other day.

Monday, November 12, 2012

My Amazing Friends

When I left Minneapolis, I had a tearful goodbye hug with a group of co-workers. That's because they were so much more than co-workers. These women had been incredible friends -- and they continue to be! And one of them came to visit yesterday: Courtnay!!

This gorgeous woman, her husband and their adorable boy Bodhi braved a night on Flat Top en route to Atlanta to see family. See how conveniently located the cabin-at-the-end-of-the-world is? (That's what our insurance man called it ... and he's a local.)

But seriously, I never EVER thought so many of my Minneapolis friends would make the journey here, and I just feel so lucky. AND LOVED!

It was a whirlwind visit, but we made the most of it, despite an inch of rain and Nick the Dog's undesirable desire to herd Bodhi (which meant Nick spent most of the visit leashed to the couch).  We're hoping a little of our hyper-relaxed psyche rubbed off on them, getting their well-deserved vacation off to a good start.

So those other Minneapolis women? They got wind that I may have complained about not having enough bowls, so they sent an early Christmas gift via Courtnay: a box full of bowls! They each picked one out, without consulting one another, and each one absolutely reflects the woman who picked it out. I LOVE THEM -- the bowls and the women.

Look, they even each came with their own lovely card! Seriously people, these women spoil me.

Courtnay also spoiled us with our greatest-ever haul of old magazines, the perfect pastime for rainy and lazy days up here:

And she also gave us another gift: a lovely photo of us on our walking trail that I'm thinking I may just save for the annual Christmas newsletter, so you'll just have to wait for that one.

Thank you Courtnay, for everything!