A Family Favorite

When I was in Tennessee at Christmas, my brothers and I were going thru the last bit of stuff from my dad’s estate that we hadn’t sorted thru. It was a few boxes that we knew were mainly photos and things we wanted to hold on to. One of the things we came across was my mom’s Sour Cream Pound Cake recipe. We each have a three-ring binder with most of her recipes, but finding this was like finding that thing that you didn’t know was missing until you found it.

I planned to make it as soon as I got home, but I kept putting it off. Partly pure procrastination, but largely because I didn’t want to make it and be disappointed. Because what if I found one of the staple cakes of my childhood disappointing?

Earlier this week I finally stepped up to the task. And the results did not disappoint. I like to think that the fact that I used  the mixing bowls and Bundt pan that were always used to make this helped.

Sour Cream Pound Cake

2 sticks butter, salted
3 C. sugar
6 eggs, separated
3 C. flour
¼ t. baking soda
8 oz. carton sour cream (go all the way, don’t use light!)
1 t. vanilla

Separate eggs, beat whites until stiff, set aside.
Cream butter and sugar. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Sift flour and soda together, add alternately with sour cream.
Fold in stiffly beaten egg whites and vanilla.
Bake at 350 for one hour in greased stem pan.

[For high altitude baking, I made the following changes: reduced sugar by 3 T. and increased oven temperature to 375.]


Shirley Delta Blow, the new Miss Queen of Aces

Had barrels of fun last night helping my friend, Stuart, with his costumes for the Miss Queen of Aces drag pageant. It was a joy to see him be so in his element as a performer during the evening, and in the weeks of preparation leading up to the big night. And it was fantastic to see so many (like, a lot) of our church community come out to support him on a cold and snowy night. I think everyone had a blast. Who couldn’t love the highlights of Steel Magnolias, told in three minutes with Barbie Dolls? And it was a packed house. More photos here.

grown-up end table

You know how sometimes you walk into a place and see the exact right thing that you have been searching for? Garage Antiques (8th and Inca) has opened a new space on the corner of 8th and Santa Fe. Mostly mid-century pieces. I’d been looking for the right end table for my den for several months. In no hurry, content to wait until I found the right piece. And I found it last night at Garage Antiques. It does have a bit of a funky stain which I will sand down and redo come warmer weather. But so happy to have found it! Here’s before and after pics of the space. Still some accessorizing to go. I’d like to find a table lamp and use that floor lamp somewhere else.

thinking of a backyard makeover

There’s ice and snow everywhere and I’m starting to envision a backyard makeover. Thinking of moving a few things around, doing square-foot gardening right, and making my backyard the place I want to spend my time come warmer temperatures.

My yard backs up to a business building which is several feet higher than the level of my backyard. There is a chain link fence with some lattice work to hide the lovely chain-linky-ness that runs the full width of the yard, at the very back.

While at the First Friday Art Walk tonight Jim and I walked out onto one of our favorite patios behind some galleries. I’d forgotten how this particular space had the back wall covered in a patchwork of old doors. We began to talk about what if we did that to my back fence. And that excites me to no end. So I may start hoarding old doors.

The picture above really doesn’t do this space justice. In the summer, with trees for a lush, green canopy and white lights running criss-cross overhead, it’s a lovely place to be.

the life in those eyes

Yesterday, as part of my job responsibilities, I had to meet with an adorable elderly couple at their home regarding their claim. In short order we took care of the details that were the reason for my visit.

I finally succumbed to their insistence that I have a cup of coffee and stayed a few extra minutes to finish it. Turns out the husband grew up in a small town in rural Alabama that I am familiar with. We shared stories back and forth of growing up in the rural south in different generations. The wife began to tell the husband about how I reminded her of his youngest sister. Then she exclaimed, (referring to me), “Just look at the life in those eyes!”

Granted, the relationship building is the part of my job that I truly enjoy. And knowing that someone actually saw past my ‘insurance professional’ exterior just made my day.