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Monthly Archives: May 2018

Hot and Smoky Baked Beans with bonus Recipe by Leah

Leahs New Logo

 

Way back when, I used to work in a dental office.  I worked for wonderful doctors and with wonderful people and hey, free dental care.  But you know the best part of working there?  Magazines!  Dental offices always have lots of magazines and this office was no exception.  Every Friday we’d get a stack of new ones and we’d all grab our favorites to borrow over the weekend.  Can you guess which magazines I grabbed? People, of course, and Bon Appetit!  Oh, how I loved that magazine.  So much beautiful food!  So many tips and techniques!  I tried a lot of new things just because I’d seen them in that magazine.  This recipe for baked beans is from those days and I’ve been making it ever since.  It’s wonderfully savory and leaves people clamoring for the leftovers.

These make frequent appearances as a side at barbecues, but when I serve it as a main dish I like to serve braised cabbage with vinegar and cornbread.

 

Hot and Smoky

 

 

Hot and Smoky Baked Beans

© of Bon Appetit Magazine™

yield: 8 to 10 servings

 

INGREDIENTS

6 bacon slices

1 1/2 cups chopped onion

1 1/4 cups purchased barbecue sauce

3/4 cup dark beer

1/4 cup mild-flavored (light) molasses

3 tablespoons Dijon mustard

3 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon soy sauce

4 to 6 teaspoons minced canned chipotle chilies*

6 (15- to 16-ounce) cans Great Northern beans, drained

Chopped fresh parsley, garnish

 

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Cook bacon in large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer to paper towels and drain. Transfer 2 1/2 tablespoons bacon drippings from skillet to large bowl.
  2. Finely chop bacon; add to bowl.
  3. Add onion and next 7 ingredients to bowl and whisk to blend.
  4. Whisk in 4 to 6 teaspoons chipotle chilies, depending on spiciness desired. Stir in beans.
  5. Transfer bean mixture to 13 x 9 x 2-inch glass baking dish. Bake uncovered until liquid bubbles and thickens slightly, about 1 hour. Cool 10 minutes.
  6. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

 

*to taste, since these can be a bit too spicy for delicate palettes.

***

This cabbage dish also comes from my dental office days.  I like to serve it with baked beans because the vinegary tang  compliments the heat and smokiness of the beans.  It’s a beautiful side dish with rich purple tones.

 

Braised Red Cabbage with Vinegar

yield: 6-8 servings

 

INGREDIENTS

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 cup chopped onion

4 garlic cloves, peeled, crushed

1 2 1/2-pound red cabbage, quartered, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch strips

1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds

1 1/2 cups low-salt chicken broth

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

 

PREPARATION

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Add cabbage and caraway seeds; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss until cabbage is wilted, about 4 minutes. Add broth. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 15 minutes. Add vinegar. Cover and cook until cabbage is tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

I’m Getting More Techy

Gaming Logo

 

Well, I finally did it.  I uploaded SL pictures to my Flickr account.  Although I started it years ago, so I could look at vendor posts and lately SL photographer pictures, I decided that it was silly that I have a ton of SL pics in my computer that I don’t share.  I know only a small portion of you are following for the SL side of my life, and I absolutely love sharing it, but wanted to give you the option to check out the tons of pics I don’t post on my blog.

 

So, look to the right and see my dandy little new Flickr widget!  *grin* I didn’t know if more than two would be distracting and bog down users, but I thought that was more reasonable.  If it sits on a bloody Harley Quinn picture if I did a single picture, that might disturb some people.  *laugh*  I am disturbed, but try to limit showing it on here except for the occasional slip ups.

 

I’m super excited to be uploading pictures to albums in Flickr and finding another outlet for my creativity.  I’ve really gotten into SL photography lately, although I have a lot to learn.  It’s been really enjoyable during a time when I’m restless and have little interests in my usual activities.  Anyway, if you haven’t noticed it and are interested, there are around a hundred loaded so far with a lot more to come soon, once I dig them out of my archives.  *grin*  I hope you enjoy and have a wonderful day!

Neighborhood Watch

Gaming Logo

 

It was a rare night that most of us were able to be on at the same time and hang out.  I’m known for having really weird things in my inventory that I’ve collected over the years (I’m ancient in SL time) and the habit of collecting creative items has spread.  Instead of playing a game or something like that, we found funny animals to ride around the property on.  

 

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Sis’s snail is new, but I bought all of us dinosaurs to ride at an Arcade event nearly a year ago, and we decided to check the new landscape via our critters.  By the way, the dinosaurs truly do make little huffs and grunts like you’d imagine.  So I (Bre) am on the Raptor on the left, Z is on the blue Triceratops, and Sis is on the funny as all get out snail.

 

 

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Z took off on his own for a bit, so I got out my new snail and the Sarcastic Sisters let our snails mingle while we chatted and laughed.  I’m thinking that we should take a stroll on one of the SL roadways and see what kinds of reactions we get.  Once we learned that Z had taken his Dino into the kitchen to eat the pastries I so neatly rezzed in there, we activated our neighborhood watch.

 

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Sis had also won a wandering snail that she gifted me, so we grabbed it to make the last stand as Z and Blue came out of the house.  It might not be the most intimidating neighborhood watch, but it’s the most unique you’ll ever see!!  Never fear, the Regulus Watch is here!

 

 

Grilled Pork Chops Recipe by Leah

Leahs New Logo

 

Pork chops were a frequent dish in my home growing up.  My mom would lay a bed of sauerkraut in a casserole dish, lay the chops on top, and then pour sauce on top of that before baking.  It seemed we ate them weekly though I’m sure that’s an exaggeration.  Nevertheless, I was raised with a love of pork chops.

These chops were some I tried only a few years ago.  I saw someone post about them on Facebook and thought they were so simple they must be delicious.  They are!  They’ve been both a company meal (served with Fuji Apple Salad and Crispy Smashed Roasted Potatoes with Dill Aioli) and a weeknight meal (with applesauce and mashed potatoes).  Though I always make these out on the grill at home, I have also made them with great success on my mom’s indoor electric grill.  In fact, those are the pork chops pictured.

 

 

Ab

 

 

Grilled Pork Chops

INGREDIENTS

pork chops

olive oil

honey

kosher salt

fresh ground pepper

fresh or dried thyme

PREPARATION

  1. Rub pork chops with olive oil and a drizzle of honey.  Sprinkle with kosher salt, pepper and thyme.
  2. Grill on high flame, just 3-4 minutes per side.  Don’t overcook or they will be tough.  They should be soft, like a steak.

GoFundMe

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Well, I made the incredibly difficult step of starting a GoFundMe campaign to help on our adoption journey. The legal costs are minimal, but due to our matches being national, we will have to do some unexpected traveling.  We all ready spent a lot on all of the renovations we did last year, getting her room ready so she can move right in and then change it to her heart’s content later, and starting to gather school supplies.  Since we always figured it would be a local adoption, we didn’t expect to have travel expenses.  We will also have additional school supplies and may have to buy a wardrobe for Kiddo, since we have no idea if the foster family/facility will be able to send much along with her.  So, we set aside our pride and started the campaign, since providing for and bringing home Kiddo are the most important things to us.

 

We created three puzzles that have inspiring adoption phrases for Kiddo and any donations will be written on the back of the puzzle pieces.  Later on we will get double sided frames, so she can see not only the phrases, but how many people worked to bring her to her forever home and show her how much she matters.  She will not be “one of the forgotten”. 

 

First Puzzle Lid:

puzzle 1

 

 

Second Puzzle Lid:puzzle 2

 

Third Puzzle Lid:

puzzle 3

 

 

We’re fundraising locally for $10 USD per puzzle piece, but we appreciate any donation and any forwarding of our campaign information.  I’m notoriously bad about not being on Facebook, so if you are willing to share the information with your contacts, that would also mean the world to us. 

 

We have a match as far away as Georgia (thoroughly ironic, right?!), so we truly don’t know what to expect.  According to our new Social Worker, it sounds like we might be at the next step with one young lady that is thankfully closer, so please cross your fingers or say a prayer for us.  It would be amazing to spend the summer getting to know our daughter.  I created a static site page for the campaign and will put the updates on the campaign on there, so you won’t hear much about the fundraising again, unless you look at that page.  This blog wasn’t made with this in mind, and wasn’t even in the realm of my thoughts for a blog post actually, so I want to keep the blog my version of normal.  *laugh*  I’ll still post adoption updates themselves, because even if it falls apart and shatters me, I’m going to go all Mama Bear and yell from the hills if we get far enough to meet one of the girls soon!  

 

So, for the fun facts…Our GoFundMe campaign is www.gofundme.com/adopting-future-cornelison.  My site page for additional details and updates is www.georgiaspampering.com/fundraising-for-future-cornelison.  Again, we are so thankful for your time reading this, any sharing of this to your social media or people or churches you know, or any donations.  The support and encouragement has been such a help all ready, when we hit forks in the road, and lost our hope.  We have the most incredible support system and we appreciate each of you.

Without You

I found this pose on SL a few days back and couldn’t resist, since I’ll be able to use it for a lot of other purposes and change things up with different windlights. For now, though, during this season of life, it tells two parts to the same story, for me.

Luke is leaning against the door and represents the adoption process in general. The ones that walk away or don’t match, the ones who get chosen by their foster parents upon the declaration of interest; all those hard moments adoptive families face. While I’m touching the door, trying to keep some connection without fully losing this big piece of life. Until we get to the good part, now that we’re past that cheerful, exciting beginning stage, there’s time I just collapse, wrap an arm around myself to try to keep control, and feel like my future is right outside that door, but still lost to me right now. Not much different from a breakup, which is probably why this pose touched me so deeply.

Secondly, people don’t usually think about the toll it takes on a couple while walking through this journey. All too often we’re on different sides of the door. I can’t vouch for his feelings, but sometimes I feel so alone when that door is closed. He is more reserved and not as involved in the process. I can’t stop myself from loving some of these young ladies, their stories, at least a bit, and it’s devastating when it doesn’t work out. When we forget to work as hard on us as on everything else going on, we’re left on different sides of the door with very different feelings. We want to understand each other, but sometimes it just isn’t possible and so we just continue down the path, recommitting whenever we can. It’s so frighteningly easy to be holding the door or be the one walking away. Even a united front can end up on different sides sometimes, with different emotions and traumas caused by this whirlwind.

I thought the loss, the grief, and longing in the pose was the perfect representation right now. The middle of a beautiful story isn’t always pretty. But it’s still our story and we’re still reaching out, so that’s all that matters in the end.

Stormy Beach

Gaming Logo

 

When I’m restless I tend to lately get on in the wee hours and wander the places listed in the destination guide or where my favorite SL bloggers have taken pictures at.  One forever night I went to a recommended beach and it was so beautiful.  There are a lot of areas to the sim, Gale Storm Retreat, but after checking out the country fun areas, the beach called to me.  I haven’t been back to a beach since just before my 15th birthday, right before we moved from CA.  And I miss the call of that wild and beautiful ocean.  So this is just a “oh, pretty pictures” post.  At first I played with my windlights, since I generally leave it on CalWL, so that’s why it’s a little lighter at first.  Then I turned on local WL and my jaw dropped.  I turned up my graphics while hanging out and imagined myself into the storm.  If you’re in the mood for a very fascinating place, you must check out this sim.  Like I said, this is only the beach.  There’s a barn dance hall, some fun little buildings, and join the group (500L, but you get GG poses and more…); once you join you can rez vehicles to drive their roadway, which is the best scenic roadway I’ve found so far in SL since I became a mesh only snob.  If you’re into building your flickr feed as an SL blogger, I highly recommend you visit.  You’ll find so many themes to work with.  And on we go…

 

First, I found my first pose and started playing with WLs.  Although this is far from the best, there’s something magical about it, so I kept the picture.  Plus, check out that skirt!  I’m hardly out of it since Facepalm put it out.  Jean skirt top with a sheer skirt that is uber feminine.  As fun sized as I am, I’d need to be on Gene Simmons’ shoes to wear something this long and flowy in real life! *laugh*

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After the Red Moments WL I hit the dusky and that’s when I realized that there was a storm experience built into the sim.  Turn to local WL, turn up graphics, and turn up your ambient noises.  *happy sigh*  This is the realization pic that there is something awesome going on…

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I finally got everything set and was so mesmerized I forgot to change pose even.  *grin* Gives me a chance to show off the killer Letis Tattoo I found while cleaning inventory the other night.  I lost that for a few months.  Anyway, check out the lightning, the sun beams poking through, the birds flying around the little stilt house, and the crashing waves.

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Back to the left is a cute little seating spot (which I also happen to have at home), where you can see the ramp leading to the ocean, the start of the beach, and really get a good view out into the storm clouds.

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Down on the beach were several seating areas.  While listening and watching I felt a bit nostalgic for those annual trips to the ocean, plus, it kind of mirrored how my mind and heart have felt lately with all of the roller coaster emotions.  When I found this pose I sat back and did the same thing.  Closed my eyes, bowed my head, and listened.  I threw every fear, financial worry, and swirling emotions out into the raging storm, and I let them rage until the weight lifted.  Maybe that’s what I missed most from my youthful trips to the ocean.  I always sat and mentally threw my problems into the ocean, and let them be wild, and when I picked up the last of them at the end of the day my heart and mind would be calm again.  I forget to lay down my problems to The Maker and instead I pray for strength to keep managing or learn to control.  I forgot to turn over my emotions to Him and tried to get help to be a strong fighter, when we’re doing His work.  He is giving us the chance to find and love someone without a forever home, and is arranging for us to find her.  Thank you, Aunt Ina, for helping me remember.  I was blessed to learn about this sim at just the right time.

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Curled up in the chair with the storm raging in front of Bre and I, I found some peace.

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