Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Blueberry Season

It's been blueberry season here for quite a while. There is a little corner of property down the street that used to be part of a farm. The state/county bought this triangle for whatever they need little random pieces of property for - transformers, weigh stations, etc. But they only needed a tiny section and they have left the rest - about 1/2 acre of blueberries. Everyone in this area who knows, comes to pick free blueberries. When I first moved here, I thought people were going fishing in a small creek nearby - I always saw the cars parked along side the road at this spot.

We've had more rain this year and the blueberries are more plentiful - unlike last year. The bushes have a lot of little bushes coming up all around them. We are thinking of digging up a few and trying to have 3 or 4 bushes in our back yard. Not sure if it will work, or if we'll still be living here by the time they would be big enough to have enough berries for a pie, but we might try anyway. The little bushes are all getting trampled and choked out by the big, untrimmed bushes anyway.

Here's a recipe for Baked Blueberry French Toast. It is modified from a friend's recipe - I've tried to take some of the calories out and add a few ingredients that we like. It's a good "company" recipe or a nice holiday recipe because you can make it the night before and pop it in the oven the next morning. Amounts of ingredients are flexible - put more of what you like, less of what you don't like! Happy Blueberry Season!

1 cup Blueberries, washed
3 or 4 slices of French bread, toasted (or any bread you'd like to use)
4 oz fat free creme cheese
2-3 Tablespoons of light butter
2 eggs, beaten with 1/2 cup lowfat or fatfree milk
dash of salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
sugar - 1/4 cup or to your taste (you can also use Splenda or other substitute)

Tear toasted bread in bite sized pieces and place in baking dish. Add blueberries. Cut cream cheese in chunks, or spoon the soft kind around the dish. Cut butter and place around the dish. Add salt, cinnamon and sugar to the beaten eggs and milk. Pour over the dish. Bake 350 degrees for 30 minutes. This will give 4 of us a nice serving. Double or Triple for a crowd.

PS - I forgot to mention, yesterday, that we use a little maple syrup over the finished product (or sugar free syrup) - just like you use for regular French toast!

Friday, July 25, 2008

16th Anniversary

We are celebrating our 16th wedding anniversary this weekend. Rich brought me some beautiful sunflowers yesterday. Had to display them on top of the TV because the cats found them very tasty!!! We are wondering if we can save some of the seeds and try to grown some next year.
Rich couldn't do with one flower arrangement - he brought me two! These were a pretty spring mix, but the cats wanted to eat them too, so they had to go on the kitchen counter!

The boys made us a special truck as a gift - it has our initials and #16 on the top.

I gave Rich a new piece for his model train set up. It is a Halloween train station that lights up and flashes and has spooky music. "All aboard for the Phantom Station - the end of the line!" It will be cool to display at during Halloween. We had a nice dinner and I made Rich's favorite - Chocolate Pie. We will continue our celebration tomorrow and go see "Mamma Mia" and listen to all the old ABBA music!

Growing Kittens!!

I realized today that the kittens were almost as big as our grown cats!!! Theodore Bear (Teddy) likes to lay on my table next to my chair - he suns under the light! I have given up trying to put anything on the table - it just ends up on the floor.
Tiger Lilly likes to sit on the floor near Rich - he is her person! She thinks that she is camouflaged if she lays near the couch cover!

Finally Rain!!

Yes, it does rain in Georgia!!! Just not much or often! But we finally had a LONG downpour a couple of days ago and our gutters couldn't dispose of it fast enough, so it poured off the front porch in sheets!
The water ran down the street so fast that our drive entrance caused it to fly up and pour over like a waterfall or like water going over a rock in a river rapids.

Coming of Age

Tony took the Coming of Age class at church this year. It teaches him about all religions and how to get along with others. He has a mentor (Chris, shown with him at the COA dinner). They did service projects together - Atlanta Food Bank - and Tony hung out with Chris, who plays in the band at church.

Tony is reading a statement about what he learned and got from his COA class. Each child got a chance to stand up and speak to the group. They talked about their experiences. Tony got to do an overnight trip where he spend the night in a cave and had a 4 hour spelunking adventure through the caves. He also got to do an overnight ropes course where he walked across ropes and did a 75 foot zip line jump!

There was a celebration at church for all COA graduates. They had to do community service hours, church service hours, plus several retreats. Participants were allowed to join the church and sign the church book if they wished after completing the course.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Birthday Girl!

Our niece, Erin, celebrated her birthday with us last week! She's the beauty of the family and we love her very much! (Her ol' man ain't bad either!) Happy Birthday Erin!!!!

Food Fear Factor

The boys went to a library function - Food Fear Factor - where they competed for prizes! They had six rounds of competition. First round they ate spaghetti-os with syrup and chocolate on them. Second they had lime Jello with olives. Next was a strange baby food mixture - I think it was lasagna and another sweet food. Then they at baby food meat with raisins. Following that was chocolate covered larva and crickets. Finally, the last dish was a timed event - plate licked clean - of a mixture of all the first 5 foods! Yum!! Damien bowed out of the last round. Tony ate up and won a certificate to a restaurant. One poor kid barfed in his plate on the last round. Everyone had a pretty good time, except for the barf-ers- poor things!

Monday, July 21, 2008

July 4

We had a fireworks battle on our front drive. The boys built ships and forts, etc. and had fireworks all set in them to go off. Pappa supervised and all had fun setting them off!


We went to Southern GA over spring break this year. Becca looked at Columbus U. and Valdosta St. U. as possible schools. Stopped in Plains, GA to see where J. Carter lived. Had a nice country lunch there. Stopped at the Fish & Pig on the way home - another nice meal! Here's some pics!

Hot Kitties!

Hi! It's HOT! 97 in the shade! Trying to get this to work! Here's a pic!