Easter Eggs!

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Easter Eggs!

I LOVE deviled eggs, and feel that they are crucial for Easter lunch. So simple and easy, but so delicious! Just be sure you have one extra yolk to add to the filling so that you have plenty – extra filling is always welcome! There is usually one egg that ends up getting a little mangled when you’re shelling them, too, so you can use those whites to scrape the filling bowl.

Can you tell I have had lots of practice maximizing my egg enjoyment?

Doggie Easter Egg Hunt!

Here it is – the doggie Easter egg hunt! (Or more appropriately, Peep hunt.) Call me crazy, but they had such a good time!

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These dogs are surprisingly bad at finding pieces of food hidden in the grass and flower beds.

The little one is Florence, a shi tzu-dachshund mix, and the larger one is Robbie, a Westie.

Here is Robbie relaxing after his Easter celebrations.

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My Cat Should Be an Ad Star

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My Cat Should Be an Ad Star

Doesn’t Walter just look like the perfect poster kitty for Pottery Barn?

(I must admit that the chair isn’t actually from Pottery Barn – it’s an old wingchair that my mother found at an antique store. The upholstery was in pretty bad condition, so she slipcovered it.)

C is for Cookie

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C is for Cookie

Cookies make a great accompaniment to afternoon tea, especially when they are my favorite Neiman Marcus cookies. The key to making them really special is in the chocolate chips. Be sure to use good chocolate, and put two different kinds in; this gives more depth of taste. These have both bittersweet chocolate and milk chocolate. I think these cookies are usually made with semisweet chocolate chips instead of the dark bittersweet chocolate, but I really like them better this way. The cookies have a richer taste as opposed to being overly sweet as is often the case.

Bottle Calves

Today I went to look at Ree Drummond’s site, The Pioneer Woman, and came across this post about the bottle calves they are raising. It made me think back to the calves we raised here. There were two of them, only a year or two apart. They were both red with some white facial markings, and their names were Buttons and Baby. Buttons’s mother died, and so it was left up to us to raise him. Baby was abandoned by his mother, who was really confused when she gave birth to twins, and I suppose panicked and was unable to care for them. Sadly, Baby’s twin didn’t make it, but we got to Baby in time and took him in. He was always a particularly small calf, I suppose because he was a twin. We always wondered if he and his twin were born a bit prematurely – calves just aren’t usually that small.

It was a pretty long time ago, but I still think back on the fun I had feeding those cute little things. Cows are really cute animals, and even more so when they are very small and friendly! I will have to try to find some old pictures of them to post.

Healthy Pie?!

I got the book Lessons from Madame Chic (Jennifer L. Scott) for Christmas, and as I devoured it over the next couple of days, I was fascinated by the descriptions of the French meals prepared by Madame Chic. It was like a description of paradise, right down to tarts for dessert every night, with the tart from the night before for breakfast.

Basically, this translates to lots of pie. Confession time: I love pie. Really the only kind of pie that I don’t like is chocolate, which most people think makes me certifiably insane, but still. I just prefer the lemon pies (remember my tarts?), the pecan pies, the apple pies, the peach cobblers, the fried pies – well, you get the picture.

The problem with pie, of course, should be obvious. There is usually a lot of butter or sugar or both involved, and while I believe that you can’t worry about every little calorie, you have to draw the line somewhere.

Therefore, you can imagine my excitement when I was watching Laura Calder one day and she made this Applesauce Tart. There is very little butter or sugar in the filling, and if you use a good old oil crust instead of a sweet crust, there won’t be any in that at all.

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This tart is delicious and completely addictive, and you don’t even have to feel bad about what’s in it. And you guessed it – I even had a leftover slice for breakfast this morning. It just goes to show that maybe you can have your cake – or rather, pie – and eat it too!

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Garden Wildlife

There are all sorts of creatures that lurk around in the out-of-doors. Every summer, a beautiful garden spider makes her home in the boxwoods by the back porch. We name her Charlotte, of course, and we leave her web undisturbed and she gives us a fascinating glimpse into a slightly different part of nature than that occupied by the furry animals that we call our friends.

Having a garden spider every year means that Charlotte must leave her progeny behind to take her place the next summer. We’ve left a small untrimmed area of a boxwood where she placed her egg sac last year. I can’t wait to see how the little spiders hatch and grow as spring goes on.

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