annie blog

February 10, 2015
by annie
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What’s Up, Daffodil?

Doesn’t really have the same ring to it as, “What ‘s up, Buttercup?” It is, however, more accurate around these parts.

These have been springing up everywhere.

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I can’t adequately express how happy it makes me to see them.

Basically, big-time happy.

I told my mom the other day that our yard is going to be like a box of chocolates. We never really know what we’re going to get, since this is our first Spring in this house.

Looking forward to it!

So, February in Mississippi means daffodils. It also means Mardi Gras is coming right up.

If you want to make a king cake, and I think you totally should, by the way, then this is totally the best one. I say this after many years of king cake recipe searching. In fact, this recipe is so good that I’ve been known to make it at other times of the year. So check it out. (my only modifications to the recipe are that I omit the maple syrup and the pecans and tick the sugar of the filling up by just a tad.)

Speaking of Mardi Gras, I heard a song the other day that reminded me of it.

I really like this song! It’s by JD McPherson and is called, aptly, Let the Good Times Roll.

I first heard it on the way to school in the morning and thought it was some great old rockabilly tune that I had somehow never heard. And, if I’m being perfectly honest, I was sort of mad that I had never heard this great song. Well, wrong, Annie. It’s like new, spanking brand-new.

Give it a listen here.

Happy Tuesday, y’all!

October 3, 2014
by annie
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Songs for your Friday

I don’t know what happened, but I seem to have misplaced my hustle. I hate it when that happens.

This is a the sort of day day I would want to skip school, if I had to go to school, which I don’t. I have a long list of activities, of course, along with an overwhelming desire just to chuck the lot for today and go prowl through the Dirt Cheap. I won’t go though, because even though my hustle is on the lam, my priorities and the responsibility I feel to get stuff done is omnipresent.

So, I’m going to employ music in a bid to regain the misplaced hustle.

Sounds like a plan, right?

1. This guy, Paolo Nutini, sounds a lot like a young Al Green. Which makes perfect sense, since he’s Italian-Scottish. What?

2. Louis Prima: Hey Boy! Hey Girl!

3. Handle With Care by The Traveling Wilburys. Woohoo! An ’80s video! You know you want to sing along…

4. The Devil Ain’t Lazy by Pokey LaFarge and the South City Three. . I saw them perform the song in St. Louis, in front of a magnificent museum, in the middle of a beautiful park, on the prettiest night in June. Good memories.

5. Xander Cardinale: Made for You.. Kind of a basic song but I like singing along (really loudly) on the chorus.

Ok. My hustle still hasn’t returned. I’m off on a hustle hunt.

Tally ho! And, happy Friday, y’all!

October 2, 2014
by annie
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Pank Slaw

Just an explanation of the title — it’s a joke of mine and my sister, Deana, to not say “pink” but “pank”. Similarly, we also say “wranks” instead of “wrinks” (short for wrinkles) but that’s another story for another day.

Back to the subject at hand: slaw.

Jon and I absolutely love it.

I make lots of different kinds, but lately this is the one that I’ve been making.

It’s good.

It’s PANK.

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Ingredients:

– Half a red cabbage; cored and sliced thinly
– A quarter of a cup pickled Pepperocini pepper slices
– Half of a thinly sliced red or yellow onion
– 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
– two glugs red wine vinegar
– four gulgs extra-virgin olive oil
– juice of a lime, optional
– salt-and-pepper to taste

Instructions:

Thinly slice cabbage and onions.

In a medium bowl, combine mayonnaise, vinegar, olive oil, and salt and pepper, and optional lime juice. Whisk until combined. Toss with cabbage, peppers, and onions.

Serve and enjoy!

Happy Wednesday, y’all!

September 29, 2014
by annie
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Lycoris Radiata

I distinctly remember the first time I really noticed the surprise lily, or Spider Lily, as they’re generally known here in Mississippi. I’m pretty sure that I had seen them before in my life, but I hadn’t really noticed them until they began popping up in the front yard at the farmhouse where Jon and I lived our first year of marriage.

We rented the house from a great old farmer, Mr. Blocker. I have no idea how old he was back then, I’m assuming mid to late 70s. He was still actively farming, but I think he was also interested in what the newlyweds were up to, and so he sometimes turned up on weekend mornings.

Anyway, to have dozens of these gorgeous, red-orange lilies pop up in my yard was unexpected and delightful occurrence for me. One Saturday morning, Mr. Blocker came along to find me joyfully picking an armful of them. I was so happy about it, in fact, that he playfully accused me, saying, “What you so happy about this mornin’? You been up drinkin’ margaritas or sompthin?”

He was a hoot.

Fast forward twenty or so years, and I find myself back in Starkville, and guess what just came up in my yard?

Yes, spider lilies. And, the master gardener who lived here before us arranged them so well. Instead of popping up just willy-nilly in the front yard, they’re arranged on the edge of beds with beautiful plantings behind them.

I’ve always loved the color red-orange. Always. So, in this house that I have been painting for the past four months, I decided that I really wanted a red-orange room. Most of the rooms are white, because I really like that too, except for the boys rooms –which they all wanted to be blue. What is it with boys, and blue? Anyway, I finally settled on a color and I painted and painted — trying to use color to unite a room which, before, had borne five different wall coverings in all — real brick, fake brick, shingle siding, bookshelves, and pine paneling.

It’s a funny color. Sometimes it looks red, sometimes orange, and once at the very end of a day it looked to be a deep salmon pink. I didn’t really have a name for it, until now.

Now, I know what it is.

See? It’s spider lily red.

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Happy Monday, y’all!

September 8, 2014
by annie
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Jarekus Singleton’s Song for Monday

You know what, your Monday might need this song “Refuse to Lose”.

Why, you might say.

1. Well, he’s a Mississippi bluesman and his first nationwide album was released in April.

2. Lots of folks, like the Washington Post and England’s Blues & Rhythm have really nice things to say about his music.

3. Hmmm, oh yes, let us not forget that blistering guitar.

Enjoy it…and, if you want to hear more, there’s a good interview here.

Happy Monday, y’all!

September 8, 2014
by annie
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Well, I Never Thought I’d Say That

Number no-telling-what on the list of things I never thought I’d say:

(to Jon, while he was on his way to the bathroom yesterday morning…)

“Babe, just so you know, there’s a little gecko scampering around the bathroom this morning.”

And, as far as I know, he’s scampering in there still, hiding his fleshy little colored self amongst the 60s wallpaper with eagles and flowers.

He may take up a permanent residence. In fact, I know that he will if it’s up to me to catch him.

Because this gal, I do not do reptiles.

I hope y’all are having a happy, gecko-free Friday!

September 4, 2014
by annie
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Chili Cheese Fries

If you find yourself on a Thursday, suffering from an acute need of chili cheese fries, may I suggest that you visit here.

Because Joy the Baker, she has those fries covered.

Happy Thursday, y’all!

September 3, 2014
by annie
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Well, hey there, September

I feel like my summer got hijacked by a can (or 30) of paint.

Whew.

In May, I joked that I’d still have paint in my hair come September. Now it seems that was less of a joke and more of an accurate assessment. I might finish this month, though, if I don’t attack my kitchen cabinets that I really want to like but can’t.

My new mantra: when in doubt, paint it white.

I have listened to a crazy amount of music this summer. Indeed, at this point, if I don’t gave a paintbrush in my hand and the radio on I begin to feel a little lost. It’s nuts.

Anyway, I really like this song. It’s way country for me — I’m usually a more of the rock, alternative, R&B, or punk music kind of a gal, but I really love this for some reason.

It’s Sweet Amarilloby Old Crow Medicine Show.

Happy Hump Day, y’all!

June 13, 2014
by annie
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Magnificent, really

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You never know what gorgeous things are just around the corner.

And, here’s another shot, with my car remote to lend some scale to the image.

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Just amazing!

And, happy Friday, y’all!

May 31, 2014
by annie
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Waffles, Y’all!

Okay, here is the best waffle recipe ever.

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Now, I mean it, ever.

Also, it is the easiest ever, too, especially if you make the night before part of the mixture in your mixer bowl. Come morning, all you have to do is plunk in your two eggs and the smidgen of baking soda and get the waffle iron plugged in while the whisk on the mixer whirls away.

There is a funny mismatch going on here. While these waffles are super easy to mix together, their taste is very complex. And they are so light and crispy! It’s kind of unbelievable.

One more note before the link, yes, it is true that I, even I, Annie the (sort of) germaphobe, do exactly as the recipe says. I leave batter with milk and butter and yeast out on the counter overnight. I suggest that you do so, too (unless your kitchen is not air conditioned — in that case you’d probably need to refrigerate). The taste will reward you and you’ll no longer be concerned about silly little things like bacteria.

Here’s the link, y’all!

It’s from Smitten Kitchen, of course.

Happy Saturday, y’all!