Indefinitely Definitely

Its no secret that Savannah and me are like this (imagine intertwined fingers squeezing each other purple). So, when I arrived in Savannah on Friday, my Tuesday departure was looming. But its Tuesday… and I aint goin’ no wheres.

savannah1

My Atlanta morning pavement walks are substituted with an sea breeze stroll along live oak lined roads. My afternoons lying out with my water snake in my backyard are replaced with soaking in the pool with the new Chelsea Handler book. And instead of driving my car where I need to go… well, I will get there by water.

savannah2

This is my accidental vacation and ‘by george… I am going to enjoy it. I hope that everyone had an awesome Memorial Day weekend!

Best Pork Chop I Have Ever Made

I haven’t made porkchops since we got Oinky back in Thanksgiving (except for once for a dinner party). Shoo… those were some good chops. But, to make Oinky’s departure a little more of a positive note, I thought that I would make myself some nice porkchops for supper… without any special occasion at all.

Now, I will go ahead and tell you that these are the best pork chops I have ever made. I’m serious. I loved the Pepper Topped Porkchops I made a few months ago. I thought that they were the best. But, alas, I was wrong.

Here is what you need:

1/2 c. honey or brown sugar

1/4 c. dijon mustard

1/4 c. lemon juice

1/4 c. soy sauce

2 garlic cloves

4 1 to 1 1/2 inch center cut bone in porkchops

cracked black pepper

The ingredients are simple enough.

Let’s get crackin’

First you want to combine the honey (or brown sugar), mustard, lemon juice, soy sauce and garlic in a bowl. Stir until the sugar dissolves.

Place chops in a large resealable plastic bag and dump marinade all over the chops.

You will want to marinade the pork from 4 hours to overnight.

Make sure that you move the contents of the bag around every few hours to make sure that the marinade is getting to every bit of meat.

After the porkchops have marinaded, get your grill ready to a medium high heat. Slap the porkchop on the grill.

And crack some fresh black pepper.

Let the porckhop cook for about 7-9 minutes per side. Be careful not to burn. Flip the chop and pepper the other side.

Pour the rest of the marinade on top of the chop and continue to cook that side for 7 to 9 minutes.

When the cooking is complete the inside temperature should read about 15o degrees. Remove chops to plate.

After I removed my chops, I realized that I should have reserved some of the marinade at the beginning for a sauce. So I whipped up a small batch before eating.

I served it alongside some summery green beans.

This is a simple summer delicious porkchop. Sometimes simple is best. You know what this would be good for? MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND!

If you and a few friends (or hell, a whole lotta friends) are cooking out, this is a great recipe to try.

I will be getting my tan on at the beach with a nice Miller Lite and some fire works. I hope you have a great Memorial day weekend!

Oh beautiful for spacious skies for amber waves of grain… for purple mountains majesties… above the fruited plains!

Oinky Update II

We all know that Oinky is gone. I still miss him and think about him, but I know he is in a better place. He is with a family that loves him, that is tolerant of his behavior, and that has another pig who has fast become Oinky’s best friend. When I receive a picture like this it does nothing but reaffirm that we gave him to the right people.

OMG. Isn’t that the cutest thing that you ever did see?! AWWWWWWWWWWWWWW! Oinky + Sunny = forever. I read a long time ago, when we first got Oinky, that pigs need other pigs. I never really believed it until I saw this picture. They belong together.

Ps: I still miss you Oinky, but I hope you are happy in Tennessee.

Fish Fry Sammy

Who doesn’t like fried food?

Who doesn’t like fish?

Who doesn’t like fried fish?

Well, maybe you… but I have a soft spot for fried fish. I can’t help it. My favorite fried fish sammy in the world is at AJ’s on Tybee Island in Savannah.  Their fried flounder sandwich makes me smile. I was thinking about their fried flounder sandwich and thought that I would whip up my own fried fish sammy.

Immediately, there were problems.

1. Publix didn’t have flounder that day.

2. Refusing the go anywhere else, I went with catfish.

3. Catfish isn’t quite the same as flounder, but is still delish.

4. I was in the mood for something spicy.

5. I scraped the idea of making my sammy like the one at AJ’s and made something totally different.

Sooo. That’s my story.

I got out my ingredients:

1. flour

2. bread crumbs

3. one egg

4. Tony Chachere’s

5. Cayenne

6. Lemon

7. Fish

8. Bun

9. Mayo

10. Dill Pickles

I started by making my tartar sauce which is 1/3 lemon juice, 1/3 mayo, 1/3 pickles + cayenne pepper

Then I battered my fish in a flour + bread crumb bath, dunked it in egg, and back into the flour + breadcrumb bath. Then  fried them up in vegetable oil until they were nice and brown.

Yum! Yum!

Next, I let the fish fillets cool/relinquish some of their oil onto some paper towels, while I toasted my bun in the oven.

After my bun was toasted, I slathered some homemade spicy tartar sauce right on top. Slathered is a good word for what I did… or maybe douched is better.

Oooo! I could add diced pickles to just about anything. I like them on my hotdogs too. Kosher baby dills can do no wrong in my book!

Then I topped it all off with some lettuce and tomato and some White American Cheese.

I definitely had a little dish of tartar sauce next to me too to dunk my sammy in. Boy, was it spicy. I have beach on the brain and this was a little taste of a sandwich from a beach shack close to my heart. Enjoy!

Sister Sister

Sometimes there are no better times that those spent with a sister. I am so lucky that I have two. I can change them out and use them as needed. What’s great about my sisters is that they are both excellent at makeup. And since Erin was in town…. and I needed my makeup done…. we got to spend some quality sister time together.

I look like a monster in many of these pictures. Forgive me.

Erin doesn’t look monster-like. She always looks purty.

Demon! Demon!

Ah! Demon! Demon!

“I will need more please…. to cover up the demon-ness.”

“Don’t forget to add it to turkey neck.”

I once tried to get my other sister, Emily, to move in with me in Atlanta. I weighed the pros and cons and one of the pros was… well, that she could do my makeup every day. I am sure that she would have loved that.

This was always one of the ways that we bonded. We could still sit around with piles of makeup, curling irons, straighteners today, just like we did in high school.

I miss my sisters.

Ol’ Mir is 53… I mean, 33

On Saturday morning, I woke up at 7:00 a.m. Yes, I did. I swear. All for the person who gave me life… and some really nice shoes last week… my mother. It is Ol’ Mir’s birthday today and we celebrated this past weekend with a nice dinner in Spartanburg. My sister, Erin, was driving up from Myrtle beach while Bf and I were driving over from Atlanta. See, my sister Erin and I are the good kids. We went home. Boo Ya Emily and Brady. Now Mom loves us more.

Just kidding. I only know that she loves me more.

My sister texted me at 11: “Where are you?”

I responded: “In bed. Too tired. I will be there around 5.”

To which my sister gave me a screen full of not nice letters and words.

To which I said: “Hehe. JK.”

To Which Then I sent her this picture:

Then I sent her this picture:

I continued playing on my phone for the next two hours until we pulled into my parents’ driveway. Thank the lawd for “Tiny Wings.” Usually when I walk into my parents’ house, we all hug “hello” and kiss each other on the cheek and talk about how excited we are to see one another…. but not this time. I shot my parents a high five and a “sup?” and made a beeline for their new dog Ruby. I also had just seen my parents the week before, so it was no big woop.

The girls went off to get their nails done while Bf and my dad went off to get some BBQ in what Bf referred to as “the most red neck place he had ever been with the best food he had ever had.” Well, that’s nice.

Once we got to the nail salon, we sat down for some girl talk.

And some major staring. I have a problem, I really do. I could people watch all day. I need no job… I just need people to say things like “eet may be clumpy ’cause eet’s dun been seeting een my truck fer ever.” Yep. Erin and I were happy as clams.

We both left the nail salon with electric orange toe nails. Erin swears they make her look more tan. I believe her. 

Don’t ya, Erin?

Jeez… don’t get angry. Its just nail polish and like I said before I believe you….

When we got back it was time for Mudder to open her gifts.

She got an iPad and asked “Which finger does this go on?” We all said “Moooooooooooooooom!” Then I taught her how to use it and now she says she “gets it.”

Ruby and Buster kept a close watch to make sure that everything was going ok and continued that way. 


Bf missed the gift exchange because he was at Walmart. That’s right. He was at Walmart. My parents have a little lake across the street and he just had to get a fishing pole. I thought that he was going to cry when he realized he had left his at home. He also picked up a plastic motor boat toy-thing. Boys. I just don’t get it. 


 Erin bought mom some card about a nursing home. She thought it was heeeelarious. 

All the while, Bf worked on getting his motor boat toy thing out of the tricky packaging. It was about 90 degrees outside so we all headed in. A few minutes later we look out to see Bf playing with the boat in my mom’s fountain. Jeez.

Don’t worry. Buster kept watch. 

We headed off to Greenville for a nice steak dinner to celebrate my mudder. 

The birthday girl was ready to party… albeit alone. 

Then my dad realized he should join her. 

I don’t like this picture. I look weird. Erin looks too pretty. Thanks Erin. 

There was pink champagne, great steaks, and the biggest french fries and onion rings I had ever seen. 

  

Like, always… there is something so great about going home.

Happy 53rd 33rd Birthday Mama!

Good Friends are the Best

20110521-114339.jpg

Only with good friends can you truly be yourself…. And take some really dumb (and hilarious) pictures.

20110521-114609.jpg

Have a great weekend and take some hilarious pictures with friends

20110521-115128.jpg

Yep those are bowls.

A Little Bittersweet…

Ok ok… it is just a teeny bit bittersweet. ‘It’ being the last day of school. I had a great class this year and is was a little hard to see them go. I am sure that I will feel better about it the first weekday that I wake up and don’t have to do anything other than watch “Maury.” I love that show.

Ah. She was very upset that episode. No lie.

Any hoo…

My 4th year teaching Kindergarten was great and I loved (almost) every minute of it… I am going to take a moment to reflect.

Ah… the beginning of the year.

Ah… the middle.

We went to the Aquarium this winter. This was my kind of field trip.

Don’t tell me those aren’t the cutest little legs you ever did see?! Uh. I am getting all misty eyed. I’ll be ok.

And then here is just a random picture from that day of the jelly fish. They are my favorite.

Well, the jelly fish are my favorite after  the penguins of course.

And then the end…

My room definitely looks bare.

I have a tradition at the end of the year. Its weird. It all started when back in Year #1, a friend texted me “What are you doing?” and I sent back a picture of my feet and my room all in shambles. Every year since, I take a similar picture. Of course I can’t find Year #1’s picture for some reason… so we will start at Year #2.

Year #2

Year #3

Year #4

You can also see the immense progress in camera phones over those few years.

Well, like I said… bittersweet.

Now……

Let’s party!

Better Than Christmas…

Yes, I uttered those words today. Tomorrow is better than Christmas. Way better. Like, doesn’t even compare better. I am singing this at the top of my lungs:

Yes, the sun certainly does come out tomorrow. Any teacher out there will completely understand. Well, probably even people that aren’t teachers must understand the magnitude of the words “last day of school.” I think I will get that phrase tattooed on me somewhere. That’s how much I love them.

I get to be Summer Me! It’s the best me there is.

Ah…. Summer has got me thinking about all of the things that I want to accomplish. Boy, once I put them on a list, I realized that I better hit the ground running.

The first thing I made a list of is all of the restaurants I want to visit this summer that I never get a chance to go to. I started this list after reading The Top 100 Things you must eat in Atlanta Before you die (via The Blissful Glutton). After I reviewed the list I realized that I had only had 2 of the things on the entire list. 2! Pathetic.

Shoo… I am sure that I will not be able to hit all of those places (at least I hope not) but I would like to go to as many as possible with my buddies.

Then I started thinking about the different dishes that I wanted to cook over the summer. The list wasn’t as long as I thought it would be.

Then, there was the most daunting list. The list of home repairs. I shutter at the thought. A lot of these were on my list last year, but I only got to painting 1/2 of the hallway… on the last day of summer. Geez, I am a bum.

I am tired already. I am really going to make these 10 weeks last.

First up (even though I know it is not officially Summertime yet) is Alive After Five in Roswell. We are going to hang out on this gorgeous afternoon and evening and hit up a new restaurant called Slate.

I am hoping to have as much fun this year as we did last year.

TOMORROW TOMORROW!!!! You’re only a day away!

Mushroom Salad with Yuzu and a Little Pig

I have been talking all Spring about different salads and sides that I have been experimenting with as a way to break up the shake up the season (see here, here, and here). I stumbled across May’s Bon Appetit and saw this recipe for Mushroom Salad with Yuzu (seen here) and I had to share. I love Yuzu Sauce but I usually use it when I made sushi. You may remember it from the tiradito I made a while ago. Its pretty simple, but with great flavors.
  • 1/2 cup grapeseed oil
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons yuzu juice
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 pounds assorted wild mushrooms (such as wood ear, maitake, enoki, chanterelle, oyster, and stemmed shiitake), thickly sliced
  • 1/4 cup sake
  • 1 5-ounce package baby greens

Whisk grapeseed oil, soy sauce, yuzu juice, and garlic in a medium bowl. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

Heat olive oil in an extra-large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, season with salt, and sauté until wilted and just beginning to brown, about 7 minutes. Add sake; stir to coat, then transfer to a large bowl. Add 5 tablespoons dressing; toss to coat. Season with salt.

Divide greens among plates. Divide mushrooms among plates, mounding slightly in center atop greens. Drizzle remaining dressing over greens and mushrooms. Garnish with chives and serve.

Yum.

I just love mushrooms.

You can also cheat and buy Yuzu Sauce, since it can be kind of hard to find Yuzu juice. I get my Yuzu Sauce at the Farmer’s Market but I am sure that you can get it in any Asian grocery.

Yuzu has such a fabulous flavor. Wikipedia says…

The yuzu’s flavor is tart, closely resembling that of the grapefruit, with overtones of Mandarin orange. It is rarely eaten as a fruit, though in the Japanese cuisine its aromatic zest (outer rind) is used to garnish some dishes, and its juice is commonly used as a seasoning, somewhat like the way the lemon is used in other cuisines.

Thank you Wikipedia.

On a totally different note:

I know you just said “AWWWWWWW!!!!!” outloud.