Sunday, January 1, 2012

Friday, July 23, 2010


Originally uploaded by bbryan
I have finally come to terms with the squirrels eating the birdseed from my feeders. But this is not OK. Just a little while after I took this, this particular squirrel had unscrewed the bottom and emptied one of our hummingbird feeders. The next time we looked, all three of the feeders had lost their bottoms.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

About Time?

It has been a very long time since I have posted anything on this blog. Life has taken a turn so that I'm usually too tired to think of anything to write about, plus I just don't think I have anything to say that would be of any interest to anyone. All this said, however, I felt so inspired to post something today. I decided to write about what we will be eating for supper. Most of you know that my husband grew up in Wilmington, NC. One of his favorites from growing up was Shrimp Creole. I got his mother's recipe a few years ago, and we've made it several times. Thursday night, we were surprised when Liz came over for a quick visit and had dinner with us. She mentioned that we hadn't had creole in a while and how good it would be. Thus, shrimp creole tonight, and Liz is coming back! Two times in a few days is awesome! Here is my mother in law's recipe. It's a good one.

Shrimp Creole

4 tbsp butter or margarine
1/2 C diced celery
1/4 C chopped onion (or more)
1/3 C chopped green pepper (I always leave this out. Green peppers are always optional in my opinion.)
2 cans tomatoes or tomato sauce
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
3 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/3 tsp paprika
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp minced parsley
3 tbsp flour
1 tsp celery seed
2 bay leaves
2 C cooked and peeled shrimp (I usually use at least a pound and sometimes more)

Saute celery, onion and green pepper in butter. Add parsley and flour. When well blended, add tomatoes and seasonings. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, 20 - 30 minutes. Add shrimp. Cook 5-10 more minutes, serve over rice.

One more thing, I usually don't pre-cook the shrimp. I add them at the end, and cook until they are done. And also, because my family likes things spicy, I sometimes add either ground red pepper or cayenne pepper.

If anyone is still lurking around out there, I hope you give this a try. It's quite yummy.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Sunday, May 31, 2009

A Day At The Beach

Donald and I left Raleigh at 6:45 and made it to Linda and Keith's house by 9. We were on the water before 10.

As soon as we got to the island, we set up camp.

Donald and Linda don't get much time together anymore, so it was nice to catch just the two of them. I wonder how many times they've gazed at the water just like this?

Donald and Keith were friends long before Keith and Linda ever started dating. As a matter of fact, I think Donald is the one that introduced them.

From where we were sitting, you could see the north end of Wrightsville Beach. That's Shell Island Resort in the background.

The egrets were out feeding.

All good things must come to an end, and in this case, it was the tide coming in that brought an end to our perfect morning. You can see how the water is filling in the marsh that was behind us. It wouldn't be long before we'd lose the little island we were sitting on.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Duck Egg Experiment

To tell this story I have to go back in time. Way back in 1996 I started getting horrific headaches. I pretty much had one continuous headache for about 6 months. Some days it was better than others, other days it was pretty bad. We later found out that my headaches were migraines, and they were most likely caused by food. As it turns out, I had a lot of food allergies, one of which was to eggs. I eliminated all the "bad" foods from my diet and the headaches went away, not to mention I lost around 15 pounds. For all this time, I have avoided anything with eggs in it. This means cakes, pies, cookies, etc. I also can't have mayonnaise, nor can I take the flu shot. The interesting thing about food allergies is that just because I am allergic to chicken eggs, that doesn't mean I can't eat another bird's eggs. Thus began my quest to find duck eggs. Finally, last Wednesday at our new Farmer's Market, there was a farmer selling duck eggs! The first thing I made was mayonnaise! It was pretty good, but it's been so long it seemed a little rich on my sandwich.

The second experiment was a scrambled egg.

Here we have the egg. Looks pretty much like a chicken egg. You can't really tell from this picture, but the shell has a grayish tint.

Cracked and in the bowl. The white part is much thicker than a chicken egg, and supposedly has more protein in it.

Scrambled and waiting to be cooked. If you didn't know, could you tell?

The cooking process.

And finally, a turkey sausage and egg biscuit! I wound up taking the sausage off and just eating an egg biscuit.

The verdict? It was absolutely delicious! Today I will be making a pound cake.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Greatest of These is Love

Those of you that know me, know that my Mother In Law had a massive stroke on March 25. She's 81 years old, and while she's making progress, it is extremely slow. Her left side is useless right now, and her eyes don't track past the midline going to the left. She's in a rehab facility where she gets 3 hours of therapy a day. Donald, his sisters and I have been focused on taking care of Mrs. Bryan. He has one sister that lives in Wilmington. She goes every day during the week and takes Mr. Bryan with her. Donald and I trade weekends with his other sister, who lives here in Raleigh. To say we are all tired is an understatement.

We've been so focused on Mrs. Bryan, that we haven't really thought about how Mr. Bryan must feel. They were married in December, 1947. If you're good in math, that makes 61 years. For all this time, they've spent almost every day together. And since retirement, they hardly spend an hour apart from each other. Mr. Bryan is completely lost without her. But this isn't about making you feel sorry for Mr. Bryan. This is a love story.

Last week, Donald's sister in Wilmington called with this story. When she went to pick up her dad to take him to the facility, he had a beautiful arrangement of flowers. He doesn't drive, so when Linda asked him where they came from, he explained that he had gone out in the yard and clipped some of the flowers from her garden. Flowers have always been an important part of her life. In the arrangement, he had azaleas, irises, and blossoms from red tips. He carried it very carefully into the facility and when he got to the room, he said, "I wanted to bring the yard to you, since you can't go to the yard right now."

Isn't it wonderful that after 61 years, he still loves her with all his heart?