Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Ello, lovelies :)

Sending you a hunchback smile (named such by Twitter friend, @tpjost ) and 'Hello' to you!

Hope you are all well. Drop me a line and let me know what is going on with you!  I would love to hear.

Recipe from Twitter friend @musicheckher coming soon!!

~Thanks for stopping by :)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Dallas Arboretum & Botanical Gardens

Fall has such beautiful colors!How beautifully leaves grow old.  How full of light and color are their last days. ~ John BurroughsMirrored LayersFall Flowers :)
Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn. ~ Elizabeth Lawrence
Sparkle Fish
No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face. ~ John Donne

Fall Arboretum, a set on Flickr.

In November of last year, I visited the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens for, "Autumn in the Arboretum". This was my first visit to the 66 acres of lush horticulture displays. The arboretum was beautifully ornamented with fall colors including over 40,000 pumpkins and decorative gourds! I'm sharing my camera's view with you.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

My thoughts on, 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' (1945 film)

The film, based on Oscar Wilde's novel, 'The Picture of Dorian Gray', stars George Sanders, Hurd Hatfield, Donna Reed and Angela Landsbury.  Dorian Gray, youthful and naive, has his portrait painted, whereupon he is introduced to Lord Henry, a friend of the painter.  Shortly after hearing Lord Henry speak of his personal views of youthfulness and the enjoyments therein, Dorian wishes to keep his youthful appearance forever in exchange for his soul.  We soon learn that the portrait of Dorian will be a mirror, more or less, to his soul wherein, the portrait becomes more and more disfigured with each sin he commits.  Two things stood out in my mind at the completion of this film:  Firstly, Lord Henry, whom seemingly lurks and suggests wrongdoings to Dorian at key moments, reminded me of the role Satan plays in our lives.  Satan can and does tempt us, but we make our own decisions.  Decisions, good or bad, lead to outcomes.  We may make mistakes and learn from these mistakes to make better decisions in the future, but we are still left with the outcomes from those mistakes.  For example, when Lord Henry suggested Dorian "use" the girl he had otherwise planned to marry and Dorian did so, he was later sorrowful about his decision and had decided to marry the girl after all.  However, before he could make it right, he learned of her suicide.  Faced with the guilt of her suicide, it seemed to me, Dorian hardened his heart and gave up on himself.  The film implied he went from one bad act to another; I'm sure the novel would fill in the blanks better than the film.  The second thing that stood out in my mind, was the fact that Dorian's fate seemed set in stone, whereas ours, thankfully, is not.  As I said before, we may have to live with outcomes from our mistakes, but that should not stop us from righting those wrongs as best we can and trying to do better in the future.  Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail."  Also, don't be discouraged.  It's often the last key in the bunch that opens the lock.

I would love to hear your thoughts on the film! :)
Thanks for stopping by ~ Julie

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Broccoli/Cauliflower Cheese Soup Bowls

  • 3 cups broccoli pieces, chopped
  • 3 cups cauliflower pieces, chopped
  • 2 cups onions, chopped
  • 5 tablespoons tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 8 cups cups chicken broth, divided
  • 1 teaspoon teaspoon dried leaf oregano, crumbled
  • ¼ cup cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons tablespoons Dijon mustard
  •  teaspoon teaspoon pepper
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • 2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, more if you like your soup cheesy
  • dash of Worcestershire sauce
  •  salt and pepper to taste
  • Bread soup bowls (make your own, or buy them)
Cut florets off broccoli and simmer in lightly salted water (about a cup of water) for 2 minutes; drain (saving the water for the soup) and immerse in cold water to stop cooking then set aside.

Cut and chop broccoli stalks and cauliflower into small pieces. Chop onion.

Add chopped onions and 3 tablespoons of butter to soup pot; sauté over medium low heat for 5 minutes or till lightly brown. Add chopped broccoli, cauliflower and 4 cups chicken broth, Worcestershire sauce and oregano to the saucepan; simmer 20 to 30 minutes. Carefully process hot mixture in batches in a blender until smooth and add back to soup pot. Or blend with an immersion blender. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in saucepan; stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly, until smooth and bubbly. Stir in mustard and pepper and then gradually add the milk. Stir milk mixture into processed mixture and remaining 4 cups of chicken broth and water from simmered broccoli florets. Continue to cook, stirring, until mixture begins to bubble. Add cheese; stir until smooth and cheese is melted. Add remaining broccoli florets and heat through.

Cut the tops of the bread bowls off carefully and scoop out the insides and toast for croutons.  Don't add croutons until ready to serve.

**Fun for kids**  Make shaped veggies for dipping!  Choose large carrots, zucchini, bell peppers, etc. and use cookie cutters to cut into fun shapes.  Brush with olive oil and place on a baking sheet sprayed with olive oil spray and roast.  You may want to add another baking sheet on top for veggies that will curl, or simply use a George Foreman grille if you have one.

Thank you, Cyndee for this awesome recipe!  I look forward to trying it.

~Thanks for stopping by :)

Hello :) It's been a while!

I haven't written anything in a while, and seeing as my last post was left on a sad note, I wanted to let you know it was written for a friend who had lost her parents and was feeling a bit low in spirits.  I was thinking of her when I wrote the post.  Hope you have been well, Friends.  I have a recipe to share with you I received today from a friend.  I haven't made it myself yet, but it seems delicious and perfect for the cool weather we are having here!  I will post it next .... two posts in one day, that's a record for me! :)

~Thanks for stopping by :)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Reminiscent Of Loved Ones Gone But Not Forgotten ...

Farewell to Thee!  But not farewell 
To all my fondest thoughts of Thee; 
Within my heart they still shall dwell 
And they shall cheer and comfort me. 

Life seems more sweet that Thou didst live 
And men more true Thou wert one; 
Nothing is lost that Thou didst give, 
Nothing destroyed that Thou hast done. 
Anne Bronte 

When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth 
you are weeping for that which has been your delight.
Kahlil Gibran

We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.
Kenji Miyazawa

Although it's difficult today to see beyond the sorrow,
May looking back in memory help comfort you tomorrow.
Author Unknown

Psalm 30:5
Weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.

Psalm 34:18
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Psalm 46:1-2
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. 
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Julie :)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Spicy Tortilla Soup

A warm, velvety soup, filled with spicy chicken and zucchini squash, topped with shredded Monterey Jack cheese and a slice of avocado.

1 cup onion, shredded
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 medium zucchini, sliced and quartered
8 cups water
6 chicken breast
1 can stewed tomatoes
1 can Rotel
1 can 15 oz. tomato sauce
1 can 12 oz. can corn, undrained
3 tsp. cumin
4 cubes chicken boullion
2 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 bag of Tortilla chips
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese
2 or 3 avocados
To make broth, boil chicken breasts in 8 cups of water until chicken is cooked. Remove chicken, allow to cool, then shred. Add bouillon cubes to broth.  Add all remaining ingredients except chips, cheese and avocado to broth.  Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.  Spoon soup in bowls, add chips, cheese and a slice of avocado.

Thanks for stopping by!  ~Julie :)