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  • So yesterday I decided I needed to feed my family. One of those impulsive things that strikes you when you need to see everyone is all right and make sure they are eating well. It's a Parent thing, I'm sure you understand.

    So this morning I told the kids to make sure they were up and at the house by 10 am. When they arrived, a few minutes early I might add, we all sat down to a Sunday breakfast of Biscuit and Gravy casserole. For those wondering, it is a mixture of country sausage gravy, soft scrambled eggs, and biscuits baked for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. It is not as dish I make often, as it is labor intensive and requires a large mixing bowl, 2 large skillets, and a large baking dish to prepare. This means you have one load of dishes before you are ready to bake the dish, and another after you're done eating. With eight people, this can be the very definition of dish pan hands all by itself.

    But having eight people around the breakfast table eating and chatting and being comfortable with one another is a blessing in itself, so it is all worth the effort.

    As you can see, Crystal, Torry and Jennifer all prefer to sit at the dining room table and chat afterward, while Ricky prefers to stand after he eats. Sandra was about to sit back down after setting up the items she needed to make her stacked salad for the afternoon meal (we'll get to that), and Skip was just coming in to sit and talk with them. (Rabecca managed to elude my camera by escaping up the stairs to recover from her late night with her father and cousins playing video games on the X-Box).

    (continued)
  • After completing my preparations for our evening repast (A 3 pound pork loin roast marinated in brown sugar, cinnamon, maple and molasses rub on a bed of stuffing with chopped bell peppers (red, yellow, orange, and green), celery and sweet Vidalia onion prepared in my smoker set on medium heat and smoked with hickory chips for around 4 hours), carried the roast, chips and water dish out to the smoker and turned it on at about 11:45. I'll check it around 4 pm.

    But while I was out there, I was pleasantly surprised to see the Peonies were in bloom and there were several other flowers standing up, so I decided to share with you.
  • Both the red and the pink peonies are opening in tremendous full blossoms, there are lilies afoot in the garden, and the irises in all colors are beginning to open. The peach irises are particularly pretty, and the yellow and purple variety are also beautiful. Hopefully before the end of the week, my dark purple irises will be open, along with white and pure yellow ones as well.

    Oh, and the last shot is the veggie garden. Quite a change from a couple of weeks ago, but we have had some awesome rain and I do water lightly on the days we do not with a mixture of water and Miracle Gro. If you look closely, the cherry tomato plant is beginning to sprout the little yellow blossoms which will become tomatoes. (Bets are still being taken on how many of these actually make it into the house. The odds are not favorable.)

    My purple sage is going crazy in the corner of the wildflower bed.
  • Well, there is my day so far. In a few moments, after posting, I'll be in the kitchen to chop a few items for Sandy, then get dressed and head out to cut and trim the lawn. In the dining room I hear the laughter of family as they sit and talk and play Uno. Not a game I particularly enjoy. Later on, after the yard is finished, will be several games of penny ante poker (more my style) and later a dinner together.

    This is the definition of a blessed day.

    ~Fred~

    A little CSN&Y for all you fans of the classics. Be blessed today.
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