Jun 30, 2011

Preserving the past for those who cannot say: I, too, was here

My aunt Linda and my cousin Bill sent me a bunch of old family pictures.  Since I have been working on my genealogy for nearly all of my life, I was thrilled. But what does one do with all of the old pictures besides put them in an album and hope that you can remember who they are even if you labeled it?  Over the Winter and Spring, I discovered scrap booking.  I didn't want to do just any kind of scrap booking but I wanted to beautifully tell my family's story.  My friend Tammy, who works with me, helped me to create my very first page.

I had an idea of how I wanted it to look and then we put it together.  The night before we were to get together, I bought a book of old fashioned paper and a few other supplies. I was thrilled with the final product, which is the picture above.

I look at the pictures that I have put together and try to get a feel for the person in the picture.  Then I start creating. I make my own labels and use inexpensive decorative items. A $2.00 pair of paper edger scissors and doilies do the trick.

Scrap booking can be expensive if you let or not.  I used my bonus money from work to get me started.  Now I only buy things that are on sale or I use a coupon.  Try to use non-conventional items in your book. Be creative.

The ribbon on this page came from my neighbor.  I made the tags and the butterflies were about $2.00 on sale.  The memories are ...priceless.

Jun 28, 2011

Until Death or Citizenship, Whichever Comes First

How does one know that they are being taken advantage of in an internet love\romance situation?  You ask all of the right questions and believe in your heart that someone is honest.  Thinking that the other person has integrity like you do. You open up your heart and allow someone from across the ocean to come into your life.  Often they come to the one (you)  who has the most to offer, such as: home, car, job, etc..But what are the warning signs?  My brother and I have a question that we ask each other whenever something arises that is questionable. What color is your red flag?  Sometimes we ignore the warnings. 

1.  If he\she declares love\devotion within the first few weeks after meeting on line. Remember these people are desperate and will do anything to make a better life for themselves.  Just think of them as prostitutes because they are selling themselves for a green card or citizenship.

2.  They want to you come to their country to meet them right away. They will say it is impossible for them to get out of their country.  It is said in a way that makes it seem like they are being held prisoner there.

3.  Is there a big age difference? Muslims marry their own kind usually and a prospective bride must be from that country, Muslim and must be able to have children. You are an infidel - a dog - for them so you are so disposable and you don't know this till it happens.  Having a child is of utmost importance for a Muslim.  The man will divorce his wife if she cannot conceive.  

4.  They insist on getting married right away, even when your meeting them for the first time.

5.   They don't want to help you learn their language.  The less you know the better for them to accomplish their plan.

6.  Upon arriving in the spouse's country, they tell no one they are married at work or school or wherever. You are not invited to the company party. You are not on their Face book page or any other like website. You don't exist.

7.  He/she will be good to you until it is time for them to leave the marriage. I.E. green card or citizenship has been obtained.  Immigration always asks if it was a good marriage.  The scammer has been given advice from others as to what to do and how to get away with the fraud. The victim never thinks that it will happen to them.

My advice, and I am talking to myself, keep your eyes at home.

Please watch the video below.  I wanted to watch the entire show but it is not available in the U.S. yet. 

My divorce is final today.

Jun 26, 2011

Strawberries and Cream

When my father was still alive, he would eat strawberries with milk and sugar.  I never tried it with cream until a few years ago.  What a difference the cream makes.  It is like silk on the tongue.  This is the time of year when strawberries are in season and oh so good.  Try this and tell me if you like it.  I sure do.

Jun 25, 2011

The Scent of Lavender

Ever since I was a little girl, I always wanted to grow lavender. I wanted to have lavender soap, shampoo, and the scent bags to put in the dresser drawers.  Now, I have the joy of growing it in my garden. Sometimes, I like to rub my fingers on the leaves and then inhale the wonderful scent.

If I am lucky and diligent, I will dry some this year and enjoy the fragrance all winter.

Jun 24, 2011

Help from the Evil Eye

We've all been there.  You know what I mean.  Throwing salt over your left shoulder, once it has been spilled, or is it the right one?. Not walking under a ladder. Bad luck on Friday the 13th or breaking a mirror.  Have you ever heard of any of these?  I think we all have.  They have been passed down through the generations without explanation or reason.  "Just don't do it", is what we have been told, "or you will have bad luck".  The Turks came up with their own protection from the "evil eye" of others.  This amulet is really called the Nazar Boncugu in Turkey, which literally means "evil eye bead". The Nazar Boncugu deflects the negative energy that is being directed towards a person onto itself, dispersing its powers or it could be the belief that the blue color holds the real shielding power and absorbs the negative energy. Have you heard the saying, "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth"? I just don't see that many people with teeth hanging around their necks or hanging outside their doorways.  If you see me with eyes and teeth hanging around my neck, just don't say anything.  I may be in one of those superstitious moods.

Jun 21, 2011

My Version of Pizza Rolls

I discovered a very tasty recipe for Italian flat bread. This bread could be used as a pizza crust and that is what I used it for, well, in a way. The bread is soft and crispy and it reminded me of the Pizza Rollers from Pizza Hut. 


3 cups of all purpose flour
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fennel seeds, optional
1/4 cup of vegetable or olive oil
2 tsp yeast
1 to 1 1\2 cups of very warm water, add 1 cup of water and then add more water if needed
1 cup of mozzarella cheese, shredded
1-2 Packages of Pepperoni
Parmesan cheese to sprinkle on top

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and knead for about 5-10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.  Add a little oil to the palm of your hand and smooth over the dough. Next, place the dough into a greased bowl and cover, put in a warm place for 1 to 1 1\2 hours or until double.  Heat oven to 425 degrees.  Grease 2 cookie sheets.  Punch down the dough and divide into 6-8 balls.  Shape each ball into a triangle, rectangle, or square, whichever shape you like.  The dough should be about 1\4 inch thick. Cover the top of pieces with pepperoni and then sprinkle the cheese on top.  Roll the pieces starting at the largest end.  I would suggest making these as a triangle because they are more crispy than the rectangles or squares, but any size is good because I have tested them all. Brush each one with vegetable oil and place on a cookie sheet. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Serve with a salad.  Enjoy!

Jun 17, 2011

I, too, am here: Embarks on learning belly dancing

I have embarked on a great exotic adventure.  I am now taking my second 10 week class in beginning belly dancing in hopes to make it to the next level. We have to take 20 weeks of beginning belly dance in order to move up.  I enjoy this dance so much.  It is provocative, exhilarating and just plain fun.  I can move my hips in the most sensuous ways and it feels wonderful.  Of course that doesn't mean that I haven't come home feeling sore from working muscles which have been dormant for a long time. 

I love this video and the music is wonderful.  Look at the girl with the green skirt.  I want to move like her.

Picture came from live strong.com

Jun 15, 2011

Still More on the Campbells

Did you ever wonder why you looked the way you do?  Why is my temperment so bad?  Where did my big ears come from?  I enjoy looking at old pictures and try to imagine myself living during that time period.  We all come from somewhere. 


These two are my relatives as well.  They hail from clan Campbell, but I just don't know who they are.  The man is very handsome but the woman, well, lets just say she could use a bit of help.

The man looks like my great grandfather Elbert with his children.

Yet another picture that is a mystery to me.  Do you see the boy in the back standing in the middle? I have a picture of him as a man.

What is it with the big ears?  Is the above man the same as the one below?

The young wife is so lovely

Jun 13, 2011

Calling all Campbells in Northwest Georgia

I come from a long line of the Campbell family. Most of my relatives live in Catoosa and Walker counties in Georgia right now. Some say the Campbells came from Scotland, while others think that they came from Ireland. My interest was piqued when I was in my early 20's by a letter that my Aunt Joye Bolden sent me with details about her husbands side of the family.  But it wasn't until I was in my late 30's before I began my search.  It has been a very interesting journey. 

This is my Great Grandfather William Elbert Campbell.  He married Amanda Elizabeth Massey and they had nine children.

 Uncle Ernest Campbell

Zadie Campbell Green

 Thomas Walker Campbell whom I consider very handsome 

William Campbell playing the cowboy

Then here is my Grandfather John Wesley Campbell with his wife Azzie Lee Bolden.

And finally my Mother, Margie Imogene Campbell Smith, daughter of John Campbell and Azzie Bolden.  As you noticed I didn't put pictures for all nine children, because I don't have them all. There is B.F., Hardie, Earnest and Jessie. If however, you are related, I would love to hear from you.

Jun 11, 2011

Japanese Shibori or Better Known as Tie-Dye

Just recently, I came across some silk scarves at a natural fiber day at Salomon Farm.  These scarves were dyed with a Japanese technique called Shibori on silk. Who doesn't like silk?  It is one of my favorite fabrics.  I talked with Ronia Marie Kreig, the artist, for some time about her scarves.  She told me that if I wanted me to see more of her work to go to the Museum of Art, some of her items are on display there.  Wow! I was impressed.  I raced to the museum and this is what I saw.

The lovely model is the young lady who works at the museum.

Here is a close up view of the scarf I went to see. It is made of silk and was over 90 inches long.  Oh, how I wanted to take this home with me.  But, my friend the price was too dear.

Did you know that there were may ways to get the designs that you want?

You can create a pattern by binding, stitching, folding, twisting, compressing or capping, which is known as tie-dying.

There were circles...

and squares...

and a variety of colors in soft hues...

But which one shall I choose? 

If you are interested in any of these lovely pieces contact Ronia Kreig at rmkreig@frontier.com

Jun 8, 2011

Asparagus and Leek Quiche

I just found a wonderful recipe and this time of year it is perfect with a salad and a nice glass of ice tea.  It has been years since I have made quiche.  I just didn't know what I have been missing.

Here is the recipe:

1 deep dish ready made pie crust
1 lb if asparagus cut into small pieces
2 leeks, cut into small slices, use only the white and light green parts
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1-2 tbs butter
1 cup of cream or half and half
1 cup of shredded gruyere or swiss cheese
salt/pepper to taste
a dash of nutmeg
4 eggs

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat a skillet on medium heat.  Add the butter, leeks, asaparagus, and garlic.  Saute for a couple of minutes.  Mixed the eggs, cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg in a bowl.  Put the cheese on the bottom of the pie crust pan.  Next, add the leeks\asparagus mixture.  Pour the egg/milk combination over the top.  Place in the oven and cook for about 50-60 minutes or until the center is firm.  Let sit for about 15 minutes after you take it out of the oven. Slice into 6 pieces.  Enjoy!!

        I ate some of this because I couldn't resist. 

Jun 5, 2011

The Tongue

The tongue merely reveals the heart. 
Let the heart be bumped and the tongue will reveal what is in the heart. 
In controlling the tongue, you must control the heart. 
 If you want to change the words of the tongue,
 you must change the condition of the heart.

To Alpaca or Not to Alpaca

It seems that raising alpacas can be a very lucrative business.  They are raised for the meat and their fiber.  One of my co-workers has friends who raise them for a living.  They have just begun this adventure.  Alpaca fiber is used for making knitted and woven items. One of the local farms here in town had a natural fibers day and demonstrated using the spinning wheel and ladies who made yarn with their natural fibers from plants and animals.

This almost looks like hair for a wig

This is what the fiber looks like
 after it has been washed
 and is ready to be sold.
It reminds me of wool but softer.

The fiber is spun like cotton or wool.

Then the yarn is dyed the most lovely colors

And sold for an astronomical price ($15.00 a skein)

However, the touch was very soft, unlike wool.
 Did I buy any of this you make ask?  Oh no, I enjoyed looking. I haven't the patience for knitting or crocheting.

Jun 3, 2011

The Best Moroccan Seasoning I have found

I love to shop at a place called Marshalls.  It is one of those stores that has closeout items and sometimes you can find the best stuff.  I have found a few Moroccan items there and one of these items is a blend of spices which I just love.  It is by Victoria Taylor Seasonings.  What if you cannot find this where you live, you ask?  Well you can order it from here. It has paprika, cumin, ginger, and caraway seeds and a host of other spices in the blend.

My favorite way to use it is with baked chicken with vegetables.  This is what I do:  I take the skin off the chicken, I don't like it.  First I rub the chicken with vegetable oil or olive oil. Next, I sprinkle the chicken with salt, pepper, and the Moroccan spice blend to my taste.  I bake for about 30 mintues in a 350 degree oven.  Then I cut up my favorite vegetables.  I like to put in onion, celery, parsley, cilantro, garlic, turnips, carrots, potatoes, zucchini or any combination of vegetables that you like. Sprinkle a little more oil, salt, pepper and the Moroccan Spice Blend.  Bake until the vegetables are tender.  Oh my, what a wonderful dinner.  I like to eat it with cornbread, but you can serve it with any bread that you like.  Then light some candles, pour a refreshing drink and enjoy.

Jun 1, 2011

Chicago and Strange People

I live about a three hour drive from Chicago.  It is such a treat to go there. 

We saw a wonderful clock

Strange looking apartment buildings

Peaceful walkways with a good friend

A lovely view of the skyscrapers...

and silver people

not just one

 They were everywhere.