I thought the magic was in the Crisco~ my attempt to make Southern Fried Chicken

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Yesterday, I felt like Ceelia Foote from The Help when she was trying to make Southern Fried Chicken for her husband. See, I get my fried chicken from a box…..Churchs or KFC suits me just fine, but my Southern husband asked me a few weeks ago that he would love for me to learn how to make fried chicken.

So I gave it a shot……but any old recipe wouldn’t do, so I asked my friend Lisa if she had a Southern Fried Chicken recipe that would knock my husbands socks off!!  “Yes Ma’am” she said. She even said that her recipe was simple enough that even I could do it. After reviewing her recipe I noticed that Crisco was in order, uhmmmm Crisco……I had visions of myself standing in front of a cast iron skillet with a big glob of Crisco melting while I prepare to drop in the chicken to be fried.

(Crisco, check- flour,check-butter, check-chicken, check)

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imagesWell, to my surprise this recipe didn’t require a cast iron skillet or having to dodge splatters of hot Crisco, her recipe called for me to bake it……..but to put in a couple globs of Crisco and butter in the metal baking pan. I needed the “fat” to get all nice and hot before putting my chicken in its home for about an hour.  My only question was “if its baked how does it turned fried?” but I kept my question to myself, I wasn’t going to ask Miss Lisa some stupid question that she will only shake her head and think “Poor little California girl”. So, I just followed her recipe step by step …… somehow some way my chicken will be fried. The trick must be in the Crisco!!

(season the flour, flour the chicken, then put it in the pan–check,check,check)

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I waited the 25 minutes before I had to turn the chicken over, I didn’t peek because again I didn’t want to screw it up……but when the buzzer when off and I opened the oven, I didn’t see fried chicken. “Shit I screwed up” I grabbed a bowl, melted more crisco and butter in the microwave, removed the chicken….poured the melted “fat” concoction in the pan…..and placed the chicken back in. “This should fry it”.

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As the chicken was cooking, I started up the butter beans that my husband requested, along with some mashed potatoes. “Do you know how to make Sawmill gravy?” he asked. “sawmill what??” I asked.  He informed my nonsouthern self about this gravy and tried to explain how to prepare it. Sounded easy enough so I was going to try it.

Let me just say…… he never got his sawmill gravy, because I was just exhausted. I ended up pulling out a package of gravy mix and prepared that on the stove. I finished sprucing up the potatoes, poured the butter beans in a bowl and was about to pull out the chicken. *crossing my fingers* I said out loud “please oh please be fried”.

It wasn’t “fried”, I googled baked fried chicken……and then saw that what I was cooking was considered “Skinny fried chicken”….. “well, I think I blew the skinny out of it with all the crisco” I said to the furkids.

I plated the chicken…..and hoped that he wouldn’t be disappointed that it wasn’t FRIED CHICKEN, like he had wanted.

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Like the Southern gent that he is, he said the chicken was very good. “What’s wrong” he asked.  “I’m tired, this southern cooking wore me out!!! but I was hoping it was going to be FRIED….I thought the magic was in the crisco?”.

Dinner was very good though, but next time ….. I’m busting out the cast iron skillet, the tube of crisco and will attempt to make fried chicken!!

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Lily, you have mouse breath!!

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In the last couple weeks I have found a few dead mice in our yard, without squealing like a little girl while Sami (our cat) looks at me for praise….. I smile, pat her head while mumbling something on the lines of “Good girl Sami, now I appreciate the kind gift but a gift card would be better than a dead rodent” . I wait till she goes into the house before I grab the shovel from the shed, scoop the furry vermin up and hurl him through the air back into the woods .

Late last night around 9pm, my husband took our furkids outside to go to the bathroom. I walked outside shortly afterwards, I noticed that Lily and Dart were sniffing in one specific area……I assumed they were tormenting a frog with their wet noses ….BOY was I wrong, I wish it were a frog.

“Lily come here”, I demanded. Dart came instead. I walked over to Lily to see what she was so interested in….. “Lily what do you have?”. Miss Little Diva raised her head and in her mouth was a mouse and not a tiny itty bitty mouse, this mouse had some meat on its bones.

“Oh my gosh, LILY GET THAT THING OUT OF YOU MOUTH THIS INSTANT” I squealed like a little girl. “Spit it out, DROP IT!” I demanded.  She drops it back on the grass and looks at me like “whats the big deal you praise Sami”.  I went back inside, grabbed the flash light…..marched out to the shed to grab the shovel. Dart was right beside me, he’s my shadow….plus he loves chasing the light from the flash light…crazy pup!!

As I walked back to where the mouse laid, Lily ran straight towards it and without hesitation she put’s it back in her mouth. “WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING LILY….YOU’RE A GIRL!! PUT THE MOUSE DOWN RIGHT NOW!” . Sami comes sauntering over, looks at Lily almost saying “Really? you think SHE thinks you killed it? Yeah right” and walks away …plops down on the cement and starts cleaning herself, never giving Lily or I a second glance.

I scooped that sucker up with the shovel, managed to secure the flashlight in my hand so the light shined on the furry “hopefully dead” mouse and walked on over to our fence.

Honey, make sure it doesn’t run up the handle and on to your arm” my funny husband yells out.

“Funny…ha ha ha”

Honey, make sure you toss the mouse OVER the fence and not INTO the fence”

This man has jokes…..

I placed the flashlight down and with a good heave hoo that mouse went flying over the fence.

Once back inside, I grabbed Miss Lily and a wash cloth and wiped her mouth clean and gave  her a little bit of peanut butter. There was no way I was going to smell mouse breath all night long while she lays next to me……….peanut butter is bad enough but I will take that over mouse breath any day!!

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This is Miss Lily

What the heck is that!!

I haven’t had much to share regarding interesting things coming into our backyard for quite sometime….until now….no, there hasn’t been any snakes visiting Thank GOD or creepy things popping up in our lawn that resemble some alien creature!!! …..but I nearly jumped out of my skin when I almost stepped on this.

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“What in the world is that?” I crouched down to inspect it a little closer, I never seen anything like this in the zoo!! I wondered if it was some sort of mini porcupine or a hedgehog…….

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Dart wanted to get close but I shooed him away…I was afraid this thing would attack if it felt threatened. “HONEY come here!!!  I have never seen anything like this before” ……he comes over looks down at it, looks at me and starts to laugh. He bends down to grab it and still laughing he says “It’s a seed, see those trees….the birds try to grab them but they are too heavy they drop them”.

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yes I admit it…..this made me jump!!! TOTAL CITY GIRL!!!

Last night my hubby came in from outside, grabbed his phone and said “honey come with me….but don’t scream”.  Great!!! it must be something big and disgusting………maybe a snake??  Nope ….. I saw this.

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“I was just sitting right by that window, how could I not have noticed that!!!” this thing was huge …..and of course I sent the picture to my co-worker who has helped me figure out what type of country critter I was staring at…..but I forgot that my co-worker is deathly afraid of spiders, so she didn’t really enjoy my pictures!! Needless to say, this spider isn’t deadly…..well only to wasps,flies and other insects. She was still there this morning, I named her Charlotte!!

This morning while trying to get ready for work, my furgirl Lily would not stop whining to go outside….she really became annoying and for the 4th time I let her out but noticed she was running straight to the back of the shed….so Dart and I followed. Great now what did she find,  as I rounded the corner expecting to see her  nose to nose with something dead or scary I was relieved to find out that she was nudging this….

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It was a turtle!!!  I always wanted a turtle to come visit!!  Dart (above) was quite gentle with it but Lily on the other hand just wanted to push it around with her nose……I placed the cute little turtle in a soft patch of grass hoping it will still be in our backyard when I got home.  “I’ve always wanted a turtle” I told my husband…..and of course he just rolled his eyes.

 

I wasn’t lying

Like my heading says “There’s like cows down the street from me”

Yesterday they were close to the fence so I grabbed the furkids and my camera and took a little walk down the block  to share what I get to see everyday!! Yes, to some they are JUST COWS…..but for a woman from Cali who was accustomed to smog, the desert heat and bumper to bumper traffic this is a very nice change!!

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lily and cow

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I love you honey, but can I shove this brick up your ass?

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Girls night out never happened…….well it did, but I decided not to join them and now I’m hearing all about it. In the first thirty minutes of sitting down in my office I have heard “I knew you would chicken out, I knew you really didn’t want to come, you missed out”. I was expecting it but I did give them plenty of notice that I wasn’t going to join them…..and as much as I was looking forward to going I wasn’t expecting my husband and our furgirl Lily to keep me awake with their snoring the night before and I didn’t think our reconstruction of our fire pit would kick my ass and render me useless once evening came.

I thought that this project was going to be a piece of cake!  I was supposed to remove all the bricks, place them in a nice little line on the side of the shed and then find all the round bricks that are lining the fence ( that kept creepy critters away) and place them by the pit. …..sounds easy, right?? What I didn’t take into consideration was the Arkansas humidity, the lack of sleep I had the night before and that I am a big baby when it comes to manual labor!!

Two hours in I was about to die…….the furkids pool looked mighty tempting, all I wanted to do was kick myself in the ass for agreeing to this stupid project!! The hubby kept checking up on me, which became quite annoying …. He had his own yard work to do and I didn’t need to hear how my bricks weren’t lining up, seriously who is going to see them anyways??

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“Why couldn’t we do this is the winter?” I mumbled to myself, not knowing he was around the corner…..shit did he hear all the other bitchin and moaning I was doing? He came up to me, kissed me and said “Thank you for helping out you are doing a great job, I know you aren’t use to working out in the humidity”…….ok so I no longer wanted to shove a brick up his ass…… “Thanks honey, I just didn’t get the Mexican worker gene”……he laughed “honey….no you didn’t, but I love you anyways”.

Needless to say, my honey did a great job with the fire pit……… I know if I was left in charge of putting the fire pit together it wouldn’t have turned out to be a circle.

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My next project will not take place out in the sweltering heat……it will be indoors. I am redoing the master bathroom…..first things first…. remove this hideous wallpaper!!  The previous owners picked out some horrendous wallpaper…..you should have seen the guest bathroom!! ICK!!

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Did you just give me the bird??

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Showing off my new riding gloves….I know, I’m stylin….hahaha

This past weekend my husband and I took a ride up to Jasper,Ar  the weather was perfect…..mid-eighties hardly any humidity, again PERFECT!!  The last time we attempted to ride up to Jasper, the whole town lost power and the yummy hamburger that I was craving had to wait for another time…..which I was able to finally sink my teeth into this past Sunday.

While riding with my husband I’ve noticed that there is a universal hand signal for bikers…..at first I just thought that when my husband was giving this signal that he knew the person that we had just passed, but after a while I realized that this couldn’t possibly be the case.  “Honey, I think it’s really cute that you guys give one another the peace sign when you pass”……”it’s NOT a peace sign” he corrected me…. “ok, the upside down… hello..hey how you doing..have a safe ride peace sign”.

The more I paid attention I noticed that there are different versions of the “hey how ya doing..have a safe ride..hello” sign. I attempted to take pictures of this during my ride but all I got were blurry pictures sooooo I found this .

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This is the typical sign…..but some don’t even bother with it…it’s like their too cool to say hello to a fellow rider, or you have those that will actually give you the peace sign because they don’t want to take their hands off the handle bars, then  you have the low rider… i’m too cool to give you two fingers I’m going to give you all five…..I was apprehensive at first, should I jump into this biker formality, I’m just a newbie, what if I do it wrong and flip them the bird instead? This Sunday I jumped right in and did my newbie version of the upside down hey how ya doin’ peace sign….which seemed to be well received.

I have really started to enjoy the days when we decide to go riding, it’s not for the thrill and my need for speed. I tend to close my eyes and yell obscenities  under my helmet while the Mister takes a curve way above the posted speed limit, but I have found that while being on the back of his bike I am able to open my mind and just let the creative juices flow…..now if I can remember half the things that I want to write about by the time I get home that would be amazing. What I need is a tiny notebook and jot down my thoughts but I would just look silly doing that!!  Sometimes though my thoughts get interrupted by the rumbling sound of a herd of Harley’s passing us by or they simultaneously rev up their engines while waiting at the light. Why must they do this?? ……. Why must those beautiful bikes be so loud?? I get that loud noise saves lives….but if your deaf from the loudness of your bike how can you possibly hear anything coming your way??  ………..but there I am trying to stay deep in thought, struggling over the noise, my ears begin to throb…..I swear I don’t know how they can hear after a day ride, ear plugs couldn’t drown out that sound.

To each his own I guess………

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U.F.I = Unidentified flying insect

It’s been very quiet in the country, there hasn’t been any strange crawdad things popping up in the grass or king snakes hanging out behind the fence. I’ve been able to just walk the grass without worrying of stepping on something that would make me squeal like a little girl!!!

well…until yesterday.

When I got home from work I took the furkids out so they could go potty….I headed over to our patio set  when I saw …..a BIG GREEN NEVER BEFORE SEEN (by me anyways) INSECT with wings laying on it’s back ….it resembled a crawdad, but green with wings…..I was in awe of this new country critter but also a little grossed out.  What the heck is this thing?? could it be a locust?? could it be that bug that squeals at night?? Lily and Dart finally came over to investigate….but of course I didn’t want them to get too close…..Dart was drawn to this thing, he wouldn’t leave this dang thing alone so I decided to do what I do best in situation like this……………put a brick on it!!

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but first I had to push it onto the grass……I used the brick to move it over and when I did something squirted out and hit my leg…..I think the cows down the street heard me scream. Once the UFI was secured under the brick we went inside.

My husband came home and I went into the UFI ordeal, of course he smiled and gave me that sympathetic  look of “you poor city girl”….while he was outside, I went over to the couch and pulled my laptop onto my lap to……well……satisfy my WordPress addiction. Then I saw it……it was crawling on the floor…..HOLY SHIT what is that!!!!  it wasn’t a beetle…..shit it has wings……I grabbed a slipper and tried to kill it……I moved the slipper away….shit this thing is still alive!! Now I have all three furkids around me trying to take a peek at this new finding…..I lifted up the slipper once more and it wiggled and started running straight for my toes…..I let out a loud scream and laid the slipper on the UFI…..my husband came in to see me, Lily and Dart on the couch ….I told him something strange was under his slipper and it wouldn’t die!!

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My hero came over to save the day ….he lifted it up to see ………… “ohhh honey that’s just a horsefly, they are big and you don’t want to get bitten by one of those because it will hurt”….. “A HORSE FLY, I thought a horse fly was just a bit bigger than a fly??”  he turned and stared at me “uhmmm honey this is bigger than a fly!!”

This is too much…..a horse fly?? I screamed like a little girl over a fly?? …………… I grabbed my Nook and decided to go back outside to read a little to calm my nerves…..what I really needed was a bottle of wine, but we don’t have any and “lucky me” I live in a DRY COUNTY!!

I removed the brick from the UFI (still have no clue what it is, my hero never inspected it) and it was no longer green…..it was dead.

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Dart is in awe of the critter while Lily is playing it safe just in case it comes back to life

Meanwhile……..

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Sami looked on while hanging out in the pool

My nerves began to settle down….I was into the story I was reading, enjoying the evening ……………..when I noticed that something was crawling on me………..it was big, black and had wings…….I jumped up and ran to the door……the pups followed but Sami…….she just stayed put in her pool giving me a look …I knew what she was thinking “Silly human, it’s just a bug”.

Cool,Calm,Collected …..this is my husband

That is definitely not me, well not this morning.  I’m trying my best not to stress out because Mr.Cool Calm and Collected is not  and if he was he is doing a great job not showing it.

It started last night when he brought home the riding lawnmower that we looked at on Sunday, he was outside riding around on it….testing it out……forty minutes later he peeks into the house and says “honey can you come out here and help me for a minute”….uhmmm ok, I quickly glanced down at my pink plaid pajama pants……I debated whether or not to change, but then again it was 8:00pm and who cares if my neighbors saw me in my pink plaid pajama pants…….it wasn’t like I was heading to Wal-Mart for an evening of shopping, I was just heading outside for a minute or two…..so I thought.

Once outside my husband told me that he needed my help to move the mower onto our side driveway because it was out of gas. We pushed and I steered, we pushed some more …… “honey get on it and steer”……”what?? You want ME on it while you push?”…..ohhh crap he’s going to have a heart attack if he tries to push this while I am on this thing!! Great!!! ……. It budged some but it wasn’t happening.  He decided to go get gas……long story short……..it wasn’t out of gas, something else is going on with it……maybe a safety sensor? Maybe something is wrapped around the blade which cut the engine off…who knows but he didn’t seem to be too worried about it…..I on the other hand was silently freaking out.

Meanwhile in my head:

Ohhh my God we just spent $750 on a lemon, but it worked when we saw it …he even tested it out at the guys house….just our luck the thing breaks less than an hour after we get it…..ohhhh no why isn’t he reacting? He must be in shock….ohhhh crap this isn’t good…..shit why isn’t he mad? Should I offer him ice cream?

4:30am…. this morning

You know when you are in a deep sleep dreaming of God knows what but it gets interrupted by some noise that doesn’t quite fit with what you are dreaming of only to slowly wake up to the sound of a squealing noise……well this was the case for me this morning while I was dreaming of saving the world from some high breed new species (the book I am reading obviously had to seep into my dream world).  It sounded like a siren a loud siren, laying in bed dazed and confused I figured out that it wasn’t a tornado siren so there was no need to grab my pink pajama pants and rush to safety……..hubby was still asleep……..dogs were snoring……how could they NOT hear this annoying sound?…..hmmm I look up at the ceiling fan, that couldn’t possibly be the source of the sound…it wasn’t. I got out of bed sniffing the air, could it be the fire alarm? Nope.I followed the sound and as it got louder I realized it came from the air conditioner vent…….OHHH NOOO not the A/C…..it’s summer…..the beginning of my freak out was beginning. Stay calm. My husband half asleep asked what that noise was and I told him, it took a couple of times for him to hear me over the noise but finally the thing shut off. He went to inspect it, I let him be and headed back to bed. There was no cussing, no freak out….he went about his normal morning routine….coffee,smoke,bathroom and then more coffee.

I finally got out of bed at 6:00 am to see him sitting on the couch, we said our good mornings and I headed outside to let the dogs outside…… hmmmm, he showed no signs of worry, how could that be?  What are we going to do if our A/C is broke? I was about to freak out  ……. after a while he told me very  calmly that he thinks it the fan and he would call a guy to come look at it. Still no distress showed…..how can he not be concerned or worried or over analyze the situation or jump five steps ahead and come up with ten different scenarios to our current situation…….you know why? because he’s cool,calm, collected he has told me time and time again not to stress out over something you don’t know what the final outcome will be…….true…..I get it…….but stressing has been my nature for years, money was always tight and something was ALWAYS happening so I was always jumping to several different scenarios while crying at my desk thinking “what’s next”!!!…..but this isn’t the situation anymore, now I have a man in my life who has shown me that there isn’t a need to stress out every time something bad happens.

meanwhile in my head….

I wonder if I should call him? I wonder if the A/C is working now? ……..naaaa I don’t want to bug him…….he’ll call or text me if something comes up…maybe he won’t because he knows I will worry. I hope Lily and Dart don’t bother the A/C man. urgh

Manual labor and I don’t mix……I don’t want to see a rake ever again!!

I felt like a slacker this weekend ….a blog slacker, granted it’s hard to blog from the back of a bike but I had every intention to write yesterday but I was so tired that all I did was read up on some of my favorite must read blogs…..I felt guilty that I couldn’t just manage to type up a quick weekend in review but I was just too busy trying to down a litter of water and prevent heat stroke, ok it wasn’t that bad……but I was hot, sweaty and covered in grass.

I spent yesterday morning raking grass because our lawn boys’ dad bought one of those zero turn mowers that don’t have a bagger and left our grass looking …….well I will just say it…..it looked like crap. I would have thought he would have raked the grass up, but no he didn’t. So, I got up early and started raking……how hard could it be right??  Let me just say this……manual labor and I don’t mix. I was totally in over my head……..it wouldn’t have been so bad if it wasn’t humid, eighty-five degrees and climbing at seven-thirty in the morning. About an hour in I just wanted to collapse……shit this was one stupid idea, I thought to myself!!!  I took a couple breaks in between and was happy when all the raking was done but now I had to put those piles of grass into a wheelbarrow and toss it in our fire pit……….that shouldn’t be so hard, right??….WRONG!!!!  ohhh sooo wrong.

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This was just the beginning of the piles…ohh and the picture just shows half of our back yard

By the third pile I was ready to go grab the lawn boy and tell him to finish his job!! All the bending and squatting and then raking up the small pieces of grass was just a flippin work out!!  After the second trip to the fire pit I just wanted to call it quits!! It was now ninety degrees outside and the heat and I weren’t becoming friends anytime soon…….and now my head started to pound, great a headache!!  I decided to go inside for a little while to cool down, my husband told me that I he didn’t want me to finish outside and that he wanted me to just relax “I have to finish what I started” I told him……plus I was almost done……..twelve more piles to go (out of a hundred….ok more like thirty). Hubby informed me that he found a guy who was selling his riding lawn mower (with bag) and that he was waiting for the guy to get in touch with him, he stated that we (ME) weren’t going to spend the morning raking again. ……THANK GOD!!  He stated he would buy some man tools (weed eater, edger and one more thing) at Home Depot tomorrow and if all works out we would get the lawn mower to!!

Long story short………….we saw the lawn mower and it will be picked up tonight……..and right now I am sore, I am walking like a little old granny……I worked out muscles that I never knew I had!!!….I think I will stick with Pilates and Yoga………who am I kidding, I don’t do that either!!