Friday, July 31, 2009

Another one bites the dust.......

The little chica lost another tooth tonight. After much encouragement, she finally got the little thing out and into the jewel box so she can get some tooth fairy moola.
Not sure how long the one next to it will hold on because it is quite wiggly too!

The kids had some pizza for dinner and the remnants are still on her face. Oh well......

Field Trip to Whole Foods

Yesterday ( before the tornadoes ripped through the area) I took a mid-day field trip to Whole Foods to get some salad for lunch and some produce to last until we can get to the farmer's market. I have been there before......but it still is like going to Disney World every time.

The produce is gorgeous....I got a quart of blueberries ( already half gone) and 5 lbs of black plums ( might last through today.) The cherry tomatoes were very nice, and since my daughter eats them instead of grapes, I got her two pints so that maybe I will have some for a salad later today.

I didn't really get to spend a lot of time browsing, but I did get some sweet potato baby food to put in pancakes and biscuits, and some greek yogurt to eat as is. ( 13 carbs per container, so I can have it) They had some lovely fresh cheese and spinach manicotti ( 11 carbs per) so I got that too. Goat cheese - in the basket. I felt the need to make some chicken Bryan this weekend since I have box wine from Publix still on hold in the fridge especially for that purpose. I have had almost nothing but seafood or other fish and veggies for about a month, so chicken sounds pretty good right now. ( ok, some of that stuff was fried - take points off my score for that).

Since Whole foods is all about being healthy, there was no DIET soda in there anywhere. I was searching in particular for DIET creme soda, which only seems to exist in places other than where I am. We couldn't find it in Pensacola/Orange Beach/Gulf Shores and it is not to be had here in the tornado zone. Jones has it on their web site for 18.00 plus shipping for 12.....not real sure if it is worth that. As time goes on without it, we might be forced to get some.

On a final note....I had to buy TWO new canvas bags when I was there because I did NOT have one in the car. I have a Trader Joe's one that I just can't bring myself to use because if it tears up I will have to go to Nashville to replace it. Anyway, the point of the canvas bag is to take it in and reuse it....not buy new ones every time. They were only 1.99 and are burgundy with giraffes screened on them, so naturally, had to have. They are smallish, but that doesn't matter...they are so cute I can deal with small. Is it PC to use a bag from one store to go into another? I am thinking it would be fine to take a walmart one into target, because that shows you are stepping "up", but an Whole Foods bag to Aldi...might not be so good. Opinions?

addendum: FYI- client told me yesterday that Trader Joe's is coming to MEMPHIS........ soon. We are at the top of the list, according to someone he knows who is in the company structure or something....anyway....we gettin' one.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Old is NEW!

Here's another blast from the past for you......Castile Soap. It is really a great cleanser for skin, hair and even clothes. I had actually been looking around town for it and had not found it, but there it was at Publix this weekend, so I got a couple ( ok, 6) bars to use at home. It was really cheap too, so that was a real bonus.

It makes a nice foamy lather and can be used on anything dirty. It does need to be rinsed thoroughly , though. I have a recipe for making shampoo from it, however I think that calls for the LIQUID form, which would involve buying it in a plastic bottle. That defeats my purpose of trying to be better about plastic disposables. I am gonna try to make some liquid from a bar and use that to make the shampoo. If all of us replaced just our liquid body wash with a bar of soap, just think how many bottles WOULD NOT have to be made or disposed of. It can also be used to make the laundry detergent described in past posts, so maybe we'll try that too!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Big Dinner at the Blue Marlin

Friday night we ate at The Blue Marlin on scenic HWY 98. It was so dang good! Above are the incredible fried mushrooms......they serve them with Ranch, but I can say that they woulda been better with some WOW! sauce.

We ordered fried pickles too ( I know......don't say it) and they were monster good as well.

The whole flounder ( my favorite) dinner was really good too, but not quite as spectcular as I thought it would be. It was a little bit more "fishy" than I was expecting, of course it is a fish, so I can't fault it for that. I still think the best I have ever had was at the Longbeach Fish house in Biloxi ( before Katrina ripped it off the beach) . Overall, the food at the Marlin was good, the service excellent and prices reasonable. It is very kid friendly , and we enjoyed watching the family with a two year old next to us who was eating crab claws as fast as they handed them to her. Reminded me of a certain little Coconut back home!
If you are in the Foley/Fairhope/Gulf Shores area....go to the Blue Marlin. You will really enjoy it!


We can't leave the coast without bringing home some shrimp on off to Billy's Seafood because Jeremy( Lauren's husband) says they have the best. Ok, it all comes from the same place and the same day, so how could it be better? We went there anyway and bought enough for the family when we get home.
Billy said "Park on the Cement".....well....there wasn't enough cement for more than two cars and Billy was busy cause the boats just came in, so we had to park on this....

Which is busted oyster shells. Can't do any barefootin' here.

Billy has more shrimp that Bubba from Bayou LeBatre. It smelled reelllly good in here......

He has fish too....these were right outta the water. There were a few nice flounder in there that I would have loved to fry up, but we don't live here, so guess we'll have to wait til we are here in a condo with a kitchen.

Here are a couple of the boats that had just dumped time I am here, we are going to be sure and bring the little peeps down to buy their own shrimps.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Grand Opening Week of the New Publix in Fairhope!

When we got back from dinner ( post on that will follow) we passed a BRAND NEW Publix which just happened to be having their grand opening. Just look at these mangos and kiwi fruits.
Even the fresh greens were smiling and happy.

Look at how they are all lined up! There was a guy walking around policing the produce.

Lauren liked the canary melons.

Have you ever seen such a selection of nuts???

Everything in the store was lined up with precision.

They had all sorts of interesting pasta, not that pasta is on my menu anymore.

...and every kind of international cooking sauce you can think of.

Falafel flavor? I really have to wonder how much of this will sell in South Alabama.

Ha! Juice boxes for grownups. Funny, there was no straw attached.

Not sure what this means.
Lauren was so excited about her Jone's Cream Soda and a HUGE can of Goya sardines. The sardines are for Jeremy......
The trip to Publix was fun. I found some Castile soap and some low carb-hi fiber wraps that I might be able to tolerate. If anyone from Publix reads this, PLEASE COME TO OUR AREA!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Mysterious Giraffe Bumps

Ok, just so y'all won't lay awake worrying about TallBoy's head bumps, I have looked around and found other giraffe's with the same sort of things. They probably are normal. I still don't have a name for it, but I have seen enough pictures now that I don't think it is anything unusual.
This one is from the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo and I just lifted the picture from Picasa .

Tupelo Buffalo Park

Today we took a little field trip to the Tupelo Buffalo Park. This tired fella is catching a snooze in the shade of a bus.......

These are some happy campers taking a look at a few reptile specimens. Wonder why they would have a cage full of guinea pigs in there. Hmmm.

Two pretty chicas. These are some campsites in the park. You can stay there if - if you dare. I don't think I would be afraid of the animals, but the mosquitos would definately be a consideration.

This guy was just lookin for some nice grass.

This is TallBoy ( original, no?) . He's a reticulated giraffe and smells awful. I had no idea that they smelled that way. I had noticed an odor at the giraffe exhibit in the "Big Zoo", but never aquainted it specifically with the giraffes. This is a really nice close encounter with something other than a goat. The kids actually fed them by hand and his tongue really has a mind of it's own and wraps around the feeder's wrist. It is sort of slimy too....real fun.

He looks like he has hives. I am gonna have to research this, since it is only on his head and the female and baby didn"t have them. Might be normal.

On the tour trolley, there is a feeding area where the people unload and put food into some bunks for the animals to eat so that the city folk can get a close look at them. Today, fishin was poor and all we got were a bunch of donkeys and mules.

Looks like a Borax ad, huh? ( Y'all know how much I love Borax)

This poor fella evidently foundered at some point in his life - he hobbled up very slowly, but then dove in for his fair share. All four feet looked clubby, but he seemed to be happy enough.

Then this tremendously fat guy barged in. He is so fat, he has a butt roll like a lot of cocker spaniels I have seen.

Oops....didn't mean to put that one on there. Back to the animals......

He is an Asian water buffalo named "Cheech". The tractor driver didn't say anything about his age, but I assume he is probably old enough to be out of warranty. His horns are messed up something fierce. Doesn't seem to bother him, though. I would just be sure to keep the grub flowing in his direction!

Is it a camel or a rabbit?

Inquiring minds want to know. "Hey, ya think I could get you to get me the hookup for some Invisalign?"

Here are the legs of the zonkey "Zelda". She's half donkey, half zebra.

The girls were fascinated with hand wash station.

There is a cool fort with all sorts of ladders and lookouts. Not my favorite part.

We had a lovely day at the Buffalo Park, then headed back toward home....we stopped on the way and ate way too much seafood and now.....gotta rest up for new adventures tomorrow.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Yummy Broccoli Salad

Broccoli Salad

This is is one of those recipes that's been around for so long, no one knows for sure where it came from, but everyone loves it.

5 cups chopped fresh broccoli
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
2-3 tablespoons splenda
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
12 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
3/4 cup sunflower seeds (I often substitute pecans for the sunflower seeds)

Toss the broccoli, raisins and onion in a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar and pepper. Toss the dressing with the broccoli mixture. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Just before serving, toss with the bacon and sunflower seeds. Serves 8 as a side dish, 5 or 6 as the main course.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Stuffed Tomatoes

The other night we had crab melts and I had some of the crab/cheese/onion mixture left over. I'm certainly not sure how that happened, but the recipe made a whole lot. Tonight I was here alone at dinner time, and there was a little of "the crab stuff" left over, so I decided to try something a little different. I mixed the crab stuff with a little cornbread stuffing mix, a little chicken broth, and an egg and stuffed it in a big tomato, then baked it at 350 for about 20 minutes. While that was going, I cooked the last green tomato , which is the perfect side for anything in summer. Looks great, doesn't it? Believe me, it was.
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Fun on the Fourth

Our church had a big Independence Day Hoot-N-Nanny complete with water slides and dunking booth. We watch the city fireworks after dark in the "back yard" of the Y next door.
The water slide is so much fun, but the ground all around it became a grassy, muddy , mosh pit.

Sometimes, hand-me-down bathing suits just won't......

.........stay down.

The dunk tank had two to throw the ball and one to be the dunkee.

Just look at all these bony little backs. All too soon they will be all muscly teenagers.

This pretty little dunkee is our neighbor.

There was tons of fun, and the burgers were excellent too!