My New Old Cookbook.

I grew up in Louisiana. Gumbo, Okra and Tomatoes, Jambalaya, Etoufée, Fried Turkey, Couvillon, Bouillabaisse, Crawfish, Shrimp, Snapper, Catfish, Pistolettes, PoBoys, Muffalettas, Crêpes, Sun Tea and more were just a regular part of life. One of the first things I remember doing as a kid was serving as my mother’s sous chef, along with my sisters. I also took home economics in junior high and high school so I picked up a lot of information that I still use, now to teach my children to make healthy choices for themselves now that they are almost grown. One of the first cookbooks I remember reading in my mother’s collection was the Betty Crocker Cookbook. Recently I found a copy at a used bookstore. I expected to have to tweak most of the recipes, but a lot of them are still useful and nutritional the way they are. Thanks Mom.

Let the Sun Shine In

Mom was telling me this morning that one of her friends was complaining about the rain in Louisiana and she thought they should come to Washington sometime. We have had a bit less than we usually get this year, but when it rains, it still pours. For the next five days we are supposed to get sunshine. I can’t wait! I wish it could last longer, but the rain keeps things green around here and in light of how things have been going in places like California and Texas, I won’t complain.


This is one of my other collages. It is done – for now. I almost ran out of matte medium, my collage adhesive of choice these days. I use mod podge for most of my 3-d decoupage projects but the matte medium works better for me with the journals. I have started on my latest Inspiration Wednesday and I know I will have fun with it because I always do. I saw a couple of interesting prospects for craft projects while I was out and about yesterday, but my mind is still open.

Inspiration Wednesday: Mardi Gras, Rainbows and Dry Wall Tape

There is no shortage of color inspiration in Louisiana, especially during Carnival season. Last week, the kids and I went to a ball in my sister’s honor and it was a feast for the senses. From the decorations to the costumes to the beads, I should be in the craft zone for months to come 🙂



This is phase one of my latest Inspiration Wednesday. I found myself at Home Depot picking a couple of things up (I had no idea they stocked Mod Podge – when did that happen?) There is a pretty good chance you will not recognize it when I’m done, but that’s the fun of art, isn’t it?

Surviving History.

Rev. Dr. Harry Blake
Rev. Dr. Harry Blake was brutally assaulted by mounted officers in Shreveport, Louisiana in 1963. The event launched the North Louisiana Civil Rights Coalition.

Yesterday, I spoke on the phone with my mother. I asked what she had been up to and she told me how she has been busy attending events in celebration of the 50 year anniversary of the North Louisiana Civil Rights Coalition. It was a pivotal point in the Civil Rights movement in Shreveport, Louisiana.  On September 22, 1963,  a nonviolent march had been planned in response to the bombing of a church in Birmingham, Alabama. SCLC field secretary Rev. Dr. Harry Blake tried to call off the march after then police commissioner George D’Artois had threatened to throw anyone participating in the march in jail. Policemen rode into the sanctuary on horseback beating people and made their best effort to beat Blake to death. The savagery of the beating and the disregard by the Shreveport police of the sanctity of the church led to the formation of the coalition. Great strides have been made, but Shreveport did not get it’s first mayor of African descent until 2006. Some would say better late than ever.

Meanwhile, back in the Pacific Northwest, my husband and I got the opportunity to see Lee Daniels’ The Butler. The film had good butlerposterperformances and had a lot of story elements that i could identify with and recall my parents relating to me about in terms of the era of the beginning of the dismantling of Jim Crow. Eugene Allen was the butler, on whose life the film was um, based. He worked for the White House for 34 years, from Truman to Reagan and never missed a day of work. He was born to sharecroppers in Virginia (not Georgia like the movie) and was married to Helene (not Gloria) for 65 years. He got to meet Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Duke Ellington, flew to Europe with President Richard Nixon and had his birthday celebrated with President Gerald Ford. He also declined an invitation to President John F. Kennedy’s funeral (in order to serve those who had attended) and accepted a VIP invitation (and marine escort) to the inauguration of President Barack Obama.