Friday, August 23, 2013

Sweet Potato Fries

Preheat oven to 450F degrees
Take four sweet potatoes

Peel off the skins

Cut and slice the potato into uniform pieces

Pour the slices in a large bowl and add about 2 tbsps olive oil and combine

then add the spices, salt and pepper and combine once again

Place on a wire rack over a cookie sheet.  Try not to crowd to prevent the fries from steaming instead of coming out crunchy.  As you can see mine were a bit crowded as we don't mind our soft and tender.  Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes, flipping them once halfway through.

These were worth making just because of the aroma coming from the kitchen.  It smelled sooo good.

This is my first attempt at making Sweet Potato Fries.  Hubby has ordered them several time when we go out to eat so I finally decided to make our own since he bought a whole batch from Sam's Club.

I'm not crazy about sweet potatoes but these ended up being really tasty much to my surprise.  Tasted like a spicy french fry with a tad of sweetness.  Not bad!!

Have a great weekend and savor every moment!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Peach Crisp

Recipe by Anne Burrell

Preheat oven to 350 F degrees.

For the filling:
Toss the peaches in a large bowl with the zest and lemon juice.

Add the rest of the filling ingredients

and stir to combine

Divide the filling evenly between the ramekins.  In my case I had to use three medium sized individual serving baking dishes.


Combine all the ingredients in a food processor except the water.  Pulse until combined.  Add water 1 tablespoon at a time . . .

until mixture is crumbly.

Top each ramekin (or baking dishes) with the topping.  Be sure to loosely sprinkle the topping and do not pack down.

Place the ramekins (or bowls) on a sheet tray and bake in a preheated oven for 20-25 minutes (I had to bake them for 35 minutes because I used three bigger baking dishes)

or bake until brown and bubbly. Set aside to cool or serve with ice-cream.

I love my sister.  I miss my sister.  She's hundred of miles away and I know she would have enjoyed this dessert.  I will think of her with each bite.

Hubby and I enjoyed and shared one of these dishes.  Every flavor jumped out like the peaches, tart lemon, the brown sugar, the crunchy almonds and oats.  What a delicious way to celebrate the almost end of summer.  I'm so done with summer and can't wait until it's gone!

Have a great week!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Land Beneath the Trees

What a wonderful vacation we had to Northern Michigan and South Bend, Indiana.  Many, many hours spent in the car.  We are refreshed and oh so blessed to have had the opportunity to go visit my sister and her family, my ancestral roots where I was born and then to knock off my bucket list a long time dream of touring the Notre Dame Football Stadium.

My siblings and I as well as our children belong to a Native American Indian tribe in Northern Michigan.  Hubby and I stayed at the resort belonging to our tribe and what a blessing it was.  The facilities were top notch although our only complaint was that since it's connected to the casino, cigarette smoke infiltrated the first floor resort section, blechhh!

Picture on the right in the above collage picture is from the resort courtyard.  Beautiful gardens and serene atmosphere. 
Top right picture is the courtyard once again where I spent time having my devotions.
Bottom right is a picture of my sister and I at a popular bistro/restaurant in Interlochen, MI.  Visit their website here at  It's was a really cute fun place to stop for a potty break, coffee and gift-souvenir shopping on our way to Mackinaw, MI.

We took a tour of the historical, Victorian town of Manistee, MI.  This is the area where our Native American Indian tribe settled back in the 1800's.
Left picture is of me in the trolley just before our tour around Manistee.  I had that song in my head the whole time from Judy Garland in Easter Parade - "Clang, clang, clang goes the trolley".....
Top right picture is of my sister's home on a modern day Native American Indian reservation.  She has it decorated so clean and so cute and so homey :)
Bottom right picture is of a nearby lake.  Crystal blue fresh water, with a flock of swans.  That's right, swans.  Not geese, not ducks but swans :)

I had my hubby take a pic of me on our last day at the resort by the indoor water garden.  Such a beautiful place.

Left picture is of my hubby and I being silly as we wait for the ferry to take us across the bay to Mackinac Island, MI.  
Top right picture of "BUDS" in Interlochen, MI.  
Bottom right is my sister, myself and my hubby.  My sister was being silly and making me laugh, poor hubby just had to bear with us "giggly school girls".

Here we are in Mackinac Island.  
Picture on the left is of my hubby being silly.  He took that Liberty flag everywhere we went.
Top right pic is one of many pictures I took of the front lawn floral gardens. These people must be able to have a green thumb in order to have a home here on the island.  These gardens were heavenly!
Bottom right picture is of the Grand Hotel, the closest we got to it from our horse wagon.  
If you want to learn more about Mackinac Island, visit a bloggie friend of mine, Sweet Pea at:
She did a fantastic job with her post on Mackinac Island.  Lots of pictures and stories, you'll love it!

A long time dream of mine has been to visit Notre Dame, preferably on a gameday but I am not complaining.  Since we were kinda sorta in the vicinity of South Bend, Indiana home of the Fighting Irish, hubby decided to surprise me and made plans for us to take a guided tour of the ND Football Stadium on our way back home.
Left picture is my hubby walking down through THEE tunnel.
Top right is the Notre Dame football locker room.
Bottom picture is one of the gates around the stadium with a football design in it.  Can you see it?

Lake Michigan - just a couple miles from my sisters home.
Some of you may know, but I am not a "beach" person. The  last place I ever want to go on vacation is to a beach. We went to Myrtle Beach one summer and it left much to be desired. Too touristy, dirty and way too hot and muggy for me. Give me the mountains, cabins, lakes anytime was my motto. Coming up to Michigan was a dream come true. It gave me my mountains, cabin living and lakes but it also opened my eyes to a different kind of beach. The beaches up in Michigan are clean, sugar sand (meaning it's so fine like sugar) and the water is fresh, not salty, a well kept secret off the shore of Lake Michigan. I fell in love with it immediately. I am only converted to these kind of beaches.

and finally, the last few pics of the end of our tour at Notre Dame.
Left picture is of me touching the sign all the football players touch just before they head out through THEE  tunnel and out to the stadium
Top right is of hubby and I outside THEE tunnel
Bottom right is a picture of me with the Knute Rockne statue, just outside the stadium.  There's a gate and statue dedicated to each head football coach who won a national title while at ND. I had to take a pic of myself with Knute Rockne, it feeds my passion for vintage football.

As many places we visited and enjoyed every minute the best memories I will cherish forever will be spending time with my sister and her family.  It was so hard leaving her, we don't see each other often enough and we both needed this mini reunion in many ways.  I am so proud of her and I want to give her a BIG SALUTE.  She is studying for her Master's in Social Work, she's on one of the committees for our tribe and doing some good things up there.  I'm so proud of you SIS!!!

Life has brought many, many changes these past two years in my life.  Some I've welcomed and some not.  I've come to depend and rely on my only source of encouragement, comfort and strength and that would be my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.  He has blessed my life and my family in so many ways. He is also showing me how much I need to depend on Him to make it through these trying times.  His love and care for me never fails.  I visit daily and do my devotions with the Proverbs 31 website led my Lisas Tyrkeurst at  A great source of encouragement for me these past few years.  
Visiting my sister and learning so much about our Native American ancestors has refreshed my purpose in life.  I'm learning they were a tenacious people and never ever gave up in wanting to repossess the land they lost to the Americans and because of them we are enjoying the fruits of their labor.  I hope we do them proud!

"Naaminitigong ndojeb"
"I am from the land beneath the trees"

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Friday, August 9, 2013

Curbside Table Makeover

On our way home from church, on our street, once again I couldn't believe this sweet piece of furniture was set out by the curb.  I yelled for hubby to stop!  I'm amazed by the pieces of furniture that I find on our street.  Here are the others:

All the pieces we have found are solid wood finds.  No pressed wood, no plastic but solid wood.  I painted it an expresso brown using Rustoleum's Spray Paint, Satin Walnut.  Annie Sloan does not make an expresso brown color otherwise I would have used it.

Much to our surprise, this table opened up into what seemed to have been at one time, a sewing machine table

It seemed that at one point, the inner platform was poorly replaced by this pressed wood platform.  Overall the rest of the table was in great shape.  All I wanted was a table this size for my special spot.

The hardware only included two handles.  I painted them using this fast drying gilders paste

I wasn't sure exactly what I needed to do with these except just wipe them down with a clean cloth and set them aside to dry before I painted them

This is what they looked like the next morning after I painted them the evening before

and here they are, back on the newly painted table door

and here she is in all her glory

I had a round table (you know, the ones that we're big in the 80's, 90's?) before in this spot and I was never crazy about it.  The past two years I looked and looked  for the right table, I almost purchased a half moon table at IKEA but I decided against it only because I still wasn't ready to pay the $60-70 for it

I firmly believe that good things come to those who wait . . . . and it was FREE!!!
I love my street :)

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