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My Latest Obsession: Sam Hunt

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People who read this page often may have figured out by now that I like to listen to a variety of music. I like pop, alternative, 80’s country, and white boy rappers (see my past posts on Kid Rock and Vanilla Ice).

But I usually am not that interested in current country music. Once Garth retired and I discovered Good Charlotte and Kid Rock, country pretty much fell off my radar entirely. I knew that I liked Joe Nichols, purely because many of his early songs I kept mistaking for George Strait. But I figured the King wouldn’t sing a song called “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off.” And since when did George become the King anyway? He was just another artist (albiet the awesomest one) when I was still listening.

Last fall I found an affection for Luke Bryan’s “Play It Again”. And I played it again and again. But I didn’t search out any of this other songs.

This spring, I was lucky enough to be invited to a Garth Brooks concert. It reawakened my love of the country I grew up on.

While removing wallpaper with pink roses on it (a very long process), I tuned to a country station. I realized they played the same songs and artists over and over again all day long. But that forced me to begin to recognize the voices of Blake Shelton and Florida Georgia Line. I became familiar with some of Tim McGraw and Brad Paisley’s previous releases.

Sam Hunt

Sam Hunt

But there was one song that didn’t fit with the others. Because it was better. And many of the lyrics were talked, rather than sang.  It got stuck in my head. I heard the artist’s name, then instantly forgot it again. I can still only remember it by thinking of how it rhymes with a swear word.

The song was “Take Your Time” by Sam Hunt.

I watched the video, which is powerful, but doesn’t specifically match the lyrics of the song. I learned that Sam is hot. And I can’t believe they let guys with weird Macklemore hair have hit songs on country radio nowadays. My, how times has changed while I wasn’t paying attention.

Doing a little wiki research on him, I learned he is a pretty accomplished songwriter. I found out that his influences include R&B, but he wanted to write about the themes of where he grew up in Georgia, which led him to country. While I believe “Take Your Time” works on country radio, I thought to myself that it could be played on adult-contemporary as well. And then I found an article where it appears that exact thing is happening in some markets.

I am still mining through his songs on YouTube, but one called “Speakers” is particularly edgy and sexy.

“You Can Leave The Night On” is another good song of his. “House Party” and “Raised On It” are kind of generic to me. I think he excels when he embraces his uniqueness. I realize being different is a big risk in any music genre…but it is also the one that can pay off the most.

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The Bounty of My Garden

Most people garden and grow a plentiful bounty of vegetables that make their way onto their dinner tables and into their stomachs.

Our garden? Eh, not so much.

Gourd collection on the front steps

We got gourds. Lots of ’em. And they are large too. I, personally, don’t know anyone who eats a gourd. But they are pretty. And it saves us money on Halloween decorations. Did I mention we have a few small white pumpkins as well?

This started last fall. After Halloween last year, when the decorative fruit started to get squishy, my husband threw our white pumpkins and gourds into the corner of the backyard we call our garden.

We call it the garden, but no matter how many times he rototills the ground, grass insists on growing there. Which is super humorous, because we can’t get grass to grow in the rest of our yard at all!

This spring my husband planted sweet corn. But, surprisingly, the gourds came up as well. My husband almost mowed off the vines, but I knew what they were from having unsuccessfully tried to grow pumpkins year after year growing up.

Our Garden

So, the corn grew and the gourds grew. We called it my husband’s garden and I left it up to him to care for it. But as it became clear that we are in a drought, I took pity and watered it when I remembered to. He forgot to thin out the corn. And he forgot to harvest it, or rather, kept waiting for the ears to get bigger. (They never did.)

Meanwhile the vines for the gourds and the white pumpkins crept through the chain link fence and tried to climb the neighbors’ tree–multiple times. It grew out through the chain link fence toward the street. It grew every which way in our backyard, increasing the size of our garden by three-fold. It was like something out of The Great Green Turkey Creek Monster.

We started harvesting the fruits of our labor last month. We got most of them to shelter before a freak hailstorm hit. Only a few were damaged. What do you do with a butt-ton of gourds? A few years ago when we grew them (similar seeding process), we tried to sell them. (I think my mother-in-law may have been the only customer, bless her heart.) This year I gave a couple to my mom. The rest, well, we will use them to decorate.

More gourds

And re-seed for next year.

Now, to get rid of those corn stalks. Ooo! Maybe I could get my husband to bundle them up for decoration as well!

Yes, we have a very bountiful garden. What do we grow? Oh, exterior harvest decorations, of course!

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A Love Letter to Deviled Eggs

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There was a farewell potluck at the church for the Pastor’s family. I asked my asbestos friend what I should bring. Being that I live 20 minutes away, it is a pain to bring something warm and attempt to keep it warm and/or try not to spill it. My asbestos friend suggested I make deviled eggs. And that made me happy.

Work Station: 1.Peel 2.Cut 3.Yolk 4.Whites

I find making deviled eggs relaxing. I know, you are probably thinking I am crazy. How can peeling one (or two) dozen eggs be relaxing? If you use brand new eggs, I have to admit, they are almost impossible to peel and can cause endless frustration. But if you use eggs that have been in your fridge a week or two, they peel better when boiled. And standing at my kitchen counter doing endless manual labor gives my mind a break.

Another relaxing thing about deviled eggs is that I don’t need to use a recipe to make them. Maybe people have a lot of dishes they can make by heart. Deviled eggs would be my only one. I don’t measure ingredients either. I just feel how much should go into each batch with my soul.

Because I enjoy making deviled eggs, I often make them for large groups, like showers or family gatherings. I have two deviled egg storage containers, which hold 35 eggs total. (Whoever invented a deviled egg container which holds an odd number of eggs should be shot. Probably a man.) When my mom made deviled eggs, she used to smash up the yolks with a fork. But then again, she was only making eggs for three people. I have found the most useful tool to use when making a large quantity of deviled eggs is a pastry blender. It is meant to be used to cut (blend) shortening into dry ingredients. I would have no idea what it was if I hadn’t been told in middle school Home Ec class. It works very well to efficiently smash lots of yolks in no time flat. (Ha, flat!)

I am not going to give you my recipe, because it is my secret recipe. And pretty unimpressive. But I will say that I do not believe the school of thought that says bring your eggs to a boil, then turn them off and let them sit for 20 minutes. I believe in BOILING my eggs for 20 minutes. I am a big advocate of food safety. I don’t want to take any chances with my eggs.

Also, if I want to fancy them up, I can put the filling in a Ziploc bag, cut the corner, and fill the egg whites as you would take a pastry bag full of frosting to a cake. But I don’t often do that, as I feel you leave valuable yolk stuff stuck behind in the Ziploc bag. I always top with paprika, although I don’t really believe it has much taste.

Finished Product (I recently melted the blue try, so I had to buy a new one. Ya! No more odd numbered eggs!

And, that is pretty much all I have to say about deviled eggs. I like to make them. They make other people happy. Hey, is it wrong to take “DEVIL”ed eggs to a church function?

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