Saturday, December 18, 2010

Kris Krinkle

Who knew that when my dearest friend, Cameron, gave me some homemade Christmas treats that it would turn into my latest addiction. They are called Molasses Crinkles, a heart-warming cookie that is good for the soul. I decided to give it a go and try making them and am sure glad I did! As I smell them baking now, my thighs are plumping and my bum is widening. Ah! The joys of Christmas!

You will need:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg (room temperature)
granulated sugar for coating

Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and salt. Set aside.
Combine the brown sugar, shortening, molasses, and egg in a mixing bowl and mix until blended.

Mix in the flour mixture.

Cover and chill in the refrigerator (you can chill for a few hours or overnight)

When ready to bake:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Shape the dough into 1 inch balls and dip the tops in granulated sugar.

Arrange the balls with the sugar side up on your greased baking sheet.

Sprinkle each with 2-3 drops of water.

Bake for 10-12 minutes or until light brown.
(I bake right at 10 minutes and then take them out and set on the stovetop for a few minutes to warm!)

(by the way, my pan looks super nasty, but I swear it is clean...) I like to call this look, "distressed."

I like to take them out earlier, while they're still soft, and put them on top of the hot stove to warm there. I also give them a tap with the spatula to flatten them.



Merry Christmas!

I'm off to run these crinkles off.......

**Recipe courtesy of Cameron Scott Stimson, via the Junior Auxiliary of Jonesboro, AR; Rendezvous on the Ridge cookbook.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Jack in the Boxty

I wasn't planning on blogging another post tonight, because my rear is getting numb from sitting for so long. But I got wrapped up in looking at old pictures on my laptop. Do you ever do that? Start looking at photos and get lost in them all? Well, I do it often - I love remembering what was going on in the photo and how I was feeling when the picture was taken.

I opened up the file folder from my trip to Colorado back in September. I never posted any of the pictures from our day trip to Pueblo. Dad took me up to the HARP (The Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo - Emily was headed back up to Denver that day - but she joined us for a little fun. The Riverwalk is amazing, it is in the historic downtown of Pueblo. The Arkansas River runs right through the middle of downtown. All sorts of fun shops and stores run alongside the river. Emily and I sought out a coffee shop right away! Here are some photos:

Me and Emily enjoying yummy coffee on the Riverwalk.

Me and Dad on the bridge, looking over the river.

Soon after all of the walking we did, we got hungry! Dad said he knew of an Irish pub he'd been to that was tasty. We made our way the the Shamrock Brewing Company in downtown Pueblo.

It was way too early for a beer. Instead I had my first Boxty... what is a boxty? My thoughts exactly. I usually don't branch out on foods that I am unsure of, but the description was intriguing:

"Boxty: Irish potato pancakes, or Aran Boct Ti, has been around almost as long as the potato itself. A part of a unique tradition in Irish food. Our boxty are stuffed with some of the freshest Irish ingredients and topped with unique sauces."

And unique my boxty was ... I ordered the Vegan Boxty, which contained artichoke hearts, roasted peppers and spinach; topped with sundried tomato pesto cream. I keep kicking myself for not taking a photo of the beautiful boxty, but found a photo online that looks pretty similar to what I had that day...

I'm fairly sure that boxtys did not look or taste this good back in the days of the Irish potato famine. So next time you step into an Irish pub, I hope you order a boxty - at least you'll know what they are.... all 2 of you who read this ;)

Rolling in the Dough

Since I've been out of school and had a lot of time at home, I decided to get into my susie-homemaker outfit and start baking! When I was out in Colorado in September my sister, Emily, made some amazing homemade pizza - dough and all! I have been dreaming of that pizza ever since. I decided today was the day...
The dough recipe is courtesy of Emily Conley, super easy and super fast!

Click on the link for the full recipe:

The dough right after mixing ingredients. Put in the microwave to rise...

It had RISEN!

Added the toppings: sauce, pepperoni, bell pepper, artichoke hearts, and shrooms!

Mmmm the delicious product!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Long Time, No Post...

I just can't hardly believe that it is December 7th and 2011 is right around the corner!

My, how time flies when you are busy...

I haven't posted anything in so long, so much has been going on. This Fall season has been trying on our family, but we just hold onto each other and keep going.

Tomorrow is my last day of student teaching and I couldn't be happier - it has been a long road, with a few bumps along the way, but I am almost there! I presented my final portfolio about 3 weeks ago and received an A in my final portfolio class at Christian Brothers. After tomorrow I will be hoping for a job... I have interviewed with the county school system and am hoping something pops up! If nothing pops up, I can always substitute and that will definitely keep me busy. With a lighter work load in the recent few weeks Greg said he feels as if he has his wife back.

Christmas will be here before we know it. Mom will fly in from Colorado in a couple of weeks and we'll all enjoy Christmas here (although Em & Kevin will stay in Denver and Dad is still in Afghanistan, so we'll be missing them!!) Greg and I are both going to be off the whole week between Christmas and New Years, so we are looking forward to some down time and relaxation. Dad will arrive here in January for a short R&R from Afghanistan, looking forward to that.

The picture I posted is of me and my sweet, precious nephew - Aidan. Have y'all seen him before? I don't know if I talk about him enough or show you enough pictures (ha!)...

This picture was taken last weekend at the Arlington town square, the train was passing by and Aidan was amazed, as you can tell. Happy Christmas, here is to more posting...

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Pumpkin Love

The cuteness ...

Zucchini Love

Here is the first fruit of my earth box labor.
While away to Colorado, Greg took care of the plant and when
I got home Monday evening this was waiting for me!
I can't wait to make some zucchini bread :) Yum!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Colorado in September

Last Thursday I headed out to Colorado to visit my Dad, while on his R&R from Afghanistan. Emily (sista) and Kevin (hipsta) visited from Denver and we had a great time! This was one of the greatest trips I have had out there, although it would have been better if Mom, Greg and the rest of our family had been able to make it... maybe next time! On Friday, Em and I went to Walsenburg to check out some of the antique/junk stores and found some killer $4 rings - best buy of the whole trip! Then we headed to Cuchara with the boys and ate at the infamous Dog Bar, did a little shopping, and then drove up to the Cuchara pass to look at the beautiful Aspen leaves changing. Saturday we headed to Antonito, CO to catch the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad Train to Osier where we ate lunch and headed back. Along the way we saw Aspen trees, deep gorges, transvestites, holey sweatpants, and sut. All in all, it was a 6 hour trip that was amazing! Some photos are below. Sunday was the day Em and Kevin headed back to Denver (sad!). Kevin headed back on his bike while Em followed Dad and I to Pueblo, CO where we walked the Riverwalk and found a local pub to eat lunch. If you've never had a boxty from an Irish pub, I suggest you try one.... delish! If it hadn't been before noon, I would have tried one of their brews... maybe next time! Later that day Dad and I did some shopping at Lowe's where I saw my first ever "unisex" labeled bathroom... still pondering that one.
We had a grand visit in a short amount of time. Hope to get Greg out there with me next time... but someone has to work around here!
Enjoy the photos below...

Dad and Kevin on the Cumbres & Toltec Railroad Ride through the mountains.

View of the Aspen changing from the outdoor train car.

Shamrock Brewing Co. in Pueblo, CO.

Laverne and Shirley ... oops,
I mean Katie and Emily getting on the train.
Most often we find ourselves dressed alike.

Me and Dad at the bridge in Cuchara, CO.

Me and Em up at the Cuchara overlook, breezy...
Hilariously striped sisters.

Em's attempt at the Titanic pose...


Me, never wanting to leave!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Sad Bird

Do you think Birdie is sad I'm leaving?

Heading out to Colorado tomorrow morning to visit my Dad while he is home on a short break from Afghanistan. I will also get to see my sister Emily and Kevin while I am out there! Looking forward to a break from school and student teaching - a breath of fresh mountain air will do me good. Wish I could squeeze Greg and Birdie into my carryon...

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Massive Zucchini

An updated photo of our HUGE zucchini plant that is growing in an Earth Box on our deck. There are two separate plants growing and they are out of control. There are 4 baby zucchini that have developed and we'll get to eat the fruits of our labor before too long!
Zucchini and Katie (please disregard our distressed deck!)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

New Favorite Recipe

Need something quick, easy, and healthy?
I found this recipe on the Weight Watchers website...
only 4 points per serving.
The recipe makes 4 servings.

They taste as if you've fried up some chicken - but it is the opposite!
Here is the recipe below, try it out and let me know how you liked it!
The husband was speechless and satisfied :)


2 Tbsp honey mustard
2 Tbsp buttermilk
1/2 cup(s) dried bread crumbs
1 pound(s) uncooked boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 12 equal strips
6 Tbsp barbecue sauce, hickory-flavored preferred


  • Preheat oven to 450ºF. Place a large baking sheet in the oven to preheat.

  • In a shallow dish, whisk together mustard and buttermilk. Place bread crumbs in a separate dish. Add chicken to mustard mixture; turn to coat. I let the chicken sit in the liquid mixture for a few minutes while the oven preheats. Transfer chicken to bread crumbs and turn to coat.

  • Remove the hot baking sheet from oven and coat with cooking spray. Place chicken on baking sheet and bake 6 minutes; flip and bake until golden brown and cooked through, about 6 minutes more.

  • Serve chicken fingers with barbecue sauce on the side. Yields about 3 chicken fingers and 1 1/2 tablespoons of barbecue sauce per serving.

Monday, September 6, 2010

A Note

I get tons of letters and art work every day from my sweet 1st graders.
I've only been in this class for 4 weeks but have enough artwork and notes to last a lifetime!
I wanted to share this one, as it melted my heart when I read it.
I translated below if you are unable to make out some of the words!

It reads:

"Mrs. Clemits | I love you | you love me |
I will miss you when it is the end of the yaer (year)
but you will be in my Gratfull hrat (grateful heart)."

We're working on complete sentences this week :)

Vacuum Fried Snack

A favorite new snack I was introduced to by my Aunt Les who found these at Fresh Market. I have to share them on here because they are fantastic! The beans are vacuum fried (resulting in less fat than traditional frying methods) and lightly salted for the ultimate snacking sensation! They have a salty and sweet flavor. I'm in love!

They also offer okra prepared in the same way - and they are just as great.
If you're ever near a Fresh Market, try them out!
They have been husband tested and husband approved.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Much Needed Words from a Friend

Yesterday was my first day of full-time teaching at my school. Last week I had 3 subjects that I taught, this week I have picked up all of the subjects. I was pretty nervous yesterday knowing I had the class all day, teaching every minute! When I walked into my classroom yesterday morning, my cooperative teacher had a card with a bag of M&M's on my desk (she knows how to get to my heart!). I opened it to find a precious and encouraging card that she had made. I had to take a picture and post it; the card really sweet and thoughtful. The card couldn't have come at a better time. It is just what I needed as I headed into my 4th week of student teaching. I have been blessed with such a wonderful mentor and friend as my cooperative teacher, she is fabulous!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Mine grows organically, in a box! Yes, that is correct - an EarthBox Growing System. My agricultural-intelligent father discovered this wonderful method of growing vegetables, fruits, and flowers. I ultimately control what goes into our bodies by growing plants in our Earth Box.

I recently inherited my grandparent's Earth Box. As I was unsure what to do with this empty box, I quickly emailed Dad. He was able to tell me exactly what I needed; he even went as far as ordering the products for me: Growing Media, Fertilizer, and Dolomite. I sat down last Sunday evening in our screened in porch and put the Earth Box together. See below:
Soil, Dolomite, Fertilizer, EarthBox, Seed

If you notice, there is a black tube in the top left corner of the EarthBox - this is the tube you put water into the planter and it keeps a water reservoir at the bottom of the box for the roots of the plants. The black cover is a mulch cover that prevents fertilizer from being washed away.

Once I completed the setup of my EarthBox, I planted my zucchini (Squash Sure Thing hybrid) seeds.
I only planted a few seeds on one side of the planter. I have seed for spinach, but am going to wait until my zucchini plays out to plant the spinach - it is more of a Fall vegetable anyways. In the meanwhile, I have some Poppy flower seeds to plant to add some color. I am hoping they'll produce well so that I can have some homegrown flowers in the house!

Drum roll please....

For the exciting news - I planted the zucchini less than a week ago and I saw the first sighting of the plant today!
You may be asking what happened to the bottom right
hand corner of my EarthBox... her name is Birdie.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Fire Hazard

Just another day at the firehouse...
Saving lives, one passy at a time!
Aidan James Howard, August 2010

Sunday, August 22, 2010

She is...

This post is dedicated to my strong, amazing, and nurturing mother.
I wouldn't be the person I am today if it weren't for her, I love her.
She has had a year of changes, pain, and happiness - and she is still as beautiful as ever.
I love you like the rock...

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Jewelry Tree

My sister Amy had a grand idea. She is what I call my "jewelry" sister, whereas Emily is my "design" sister. I wonder what they call me?

It's probably best if I didn't know...

For keeping Aidan this coming Friday, Amy bought me this gift. Not sure why she feels she has to buy me a gift to do something I absolutely love, but I wouldn't want to hurt her feelings. This originally was made to hold photographs from Pier 1 Imports. But she, being the creative jewelry sister, decided it'd be great to hang jewelry!

I love the idea. Here is a picture of some of my duds hanging from it. Much better than the shoebox I had my jewelry in, getting all tangled.

Thanks sis!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Pepsi is Good, But Coke Rocks

Greg told me a very interesting story yesterday; a story I thought was a joke at first. For those of you who do not know, Greg works in sales at Pepsi. Friday he went on a few special missions; one of which could have turned out very bad. He arrived to a certain store around 7:30am, near Pendleton and Lamar. Now, if you're from Memphis - you probably just cringed. If you are not familiar with Memphis - just picture the show 'Cops.'
So, anyways, he arrives to the front door of this "convenient store." I use the quotations because the only convenient thing about this store was that it was attached to a run-down house. It was something he had never seen before, but knew he had to get this done for a guy who was out of town. As he walked to the front door, he noticed a padlock. He knocked a few times then finally looked in the window and tapped to get anyone's attention. All of the sudden he saw this head pop up slowly from behind the counter. Greg pointed to the Pepsi logo on his polo and said he was with Pepsi. No one really seemed to care.
Greg went around to the side of the building - well, make-shift store - and found a door that looked ajar. He was a bit hesitant but creeped the door open and made it known he was there - not to scare anyone. Before he knew it, the door hit a pair of feet that were poking out of a sleeping bag. Once his eyes got past the sleeping (or dead) man he had hit with the door, he realized there were 8-10 people sleeping on the floor behind the store's counter. One of the men poked his head up and said, "is you da po-leece?" The dude looked like he was high as a kite. Greg said people were poking up like wack-a-mole! He quickly turned around and said forget it. They definitely needed more than what Pepsi could offer.

Imagine if he'd gone in saying he was the Coke guy ...

" you da po-leece?"

After further investigation - the owner of the store had forgotten to lock the door, allowing several squatters to come in and sleep that night.

Soap Opera

I like to share items that I buy and am super happy with...
This is a MUST buy from Target - a great kitchen hand-soap.
It smells delicious and is so soft on your hands.
I find myself washing my hands over and over at the kitchen sink.

CALDREA Olive Oil Hand Soap
Made with Natural Essential Oils of Coriander and Cedarleaf

Saturday, July 31, 2010


Last night Greg and I went over to Amy and Clay's to enjoy some good eats, some baby lovin', and our cousin Justin. Justin recently moved back to the Memphis area - after finishing his Bachelors at Mizzou & his Masters at Emory in Atlanta. He has grown up so much into such a handsome & smart young man! Wanted to share this photo of the cousins on the Yancey side (we're missing 3 cousins in this photo). Nothing like good family and food!
Justin Yancey, Amy Howard, Katie Clements

Sunday, July 25, 2010

My Criminal Mind Follows Me

Well I made it to Martin and back and finished my last two Praxis exams! The past few days feel like another life or something. I ended up going to Martin alone - Greg got a better offer for the weekend and I told him to take it. What fun would I be... studying, waking up at the crack of dawn, and testing for 4 hours. And not to be a downer, but there isn't much to do in Martin. The campus is the best part of the town. It's has the friendly, small-town feel but Greg would have definitely been waiting for me at the local Pizza Hut or La Cabana Mexican Restaurant all day and not sure the businesses would appreciate it. So, it all worked out well.
I didn't sleep very well, I was staying at the Days Inn, which has (as I call them) "outdoor" rooms. The doors go straight to the outside. These always scare me a bit because people know what room you're staying in because you're parked right outside the window. And it didn't help that I was one of three people staying at the hotel (or is it motel? I always get those confused) Plus, the window covering never quite covers the window all the way. Instantly, my Dateline NBC and 48 Hour Mystery mind kicks in and the wheels start churning. I thought about parking on the other side of the Days Inn to trick any potential unsubs (again, I watch too many Criminal Minds). But then I thought, that defeats the whole purpose of hitting my car's panic button and scaring off the unsub. I kept reminding myself I was in Martin, TN - what could possibly happen (in a Dateline Keith Morrison voice). Thank goodness for my small travel fan. Sitting right next to me on high. For some reason I think if I can't hear anything, nothing will happen. It's a good mantra I live by.
Anyways - wow, where did all that come from.... see what Greg has to live with? Wowzer...
I slept okay and was up bright and early, showered, ate my graham crackers, and headed out to take the tests. I arrived super early, as always, and waited FOREVER. The first test began at 8:30am, ending at 10:30am - just in time to get in the registration line for my second test that started at 11:45am and ended at 1:45pm. By 2:00pm I was heading out and coming back home. My brain was on overload and was ready to relax to some tunes and drive for a while.
All in all, Martin is a nice little town full of great people.
I guess I'll see in 4 weeks if I passed the darn tests, and if I didn't - I'll be sure to register at a location closer to home!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Photo Picnik

So I just discovered the photo editing website ->
It is my newest addiction...
From what I can tell, it's free - and this is the editing program
Picasa Web Albums uses as well.
The boys, using the "1960s" spin on the photo.

Annie get your gun...

This is a picture of Birdie using the "posterize" effect.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Who Needs White Beaches and Sunsets

Ok, so don't get too jealous, but Greg and I are going on a one-night, no expenses paid vacation this next weekend to Martin, Tennessee. I know, I know... a little bit on a whim and a little crazy. We decided against the Bahamas or Hawaii and decided to spring for Martin, TN - oh but wait, there is a long explanation if you care to hear why - -

So to become licensed in Tennessee as a teacher, I have to take and pass several series of a test called Praxis. I have passed all sections thus far and have 2 more tests to take. I had registered for one of them to take this next Saturday at the University of Memphis (the only testing center that offers the Praxis exam in Memphis). Well, I then realized last week that I have one more to take and what if I weren't to pass it in the fall? Then I would not have enough time to re-take in order to apply for my teaching license when I graduate in December... are you confused yet? But there were no more openings for the 2nd test I needed at the Memphis testing center. So I had an infamous "Katie Catastrophic Clements Freak-out Moment." These do happen frequently, its just my style. I emailed several of my professors at school and even the licensing lady, I called the testing center to get help, I was freaking out! (just ask my classmate, Ashleigh-Brooke) What if I am unable to get a job because I didn't get this test completed?

So, to skip a lot of boring details - I ended up getting signed up for both tests back to back in Martin, TN because it was the only testing center close enough to Memphis that has openings for both tests. Of course the first test begins at 7:30am and I have no idea where I'm going. So, Greg and I are going up Friday and staying the night there. My parents actually spent some time at Martin in their younger years, so it will be cool to walk the same sidewalks as they did back when...Hopefully during the 5 hours while I'm taking the tests Greg will find something interesting to do in Martin... if you have any ideas on area attractions, please advise!
Moral of this story: prepare in advance

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Little Man

Just wanted to share this photo, I love it.
Amy and Clay, you make one heck of a baby!
When's the next one? Ha!
Thank you for our sweet nephew...

Aidan James Howard at our house.
July 4, 2010

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Slug Burger in Paradise

Greg and I had a chance to visit our dear friends, Kristy and Scott Kennedy, this weekend. They recently moved to Corinth, MS - less than 2 hours from our driveway. This weekend was the big Slug Burger Festival - which we were hoping to check out. Much to our dismay, the festival started later than we thought and we had to begin our journey back home to begin my beloved homework. We did, however, stop in Borroum's Drug Store before we left for a taste of the famous slug burger. There is a lot of history in this town, I really enjoyed walking in the streets of the old town. Between the food and laughs, we had a great visit.

Wait, you might be asking ... what IS a slug burger? During the Depression years, diner cooks soughtto stretch ground beef to get more burgers per pound. Originally these hamburgers were made using potato flour as an extender. Today, the beef mixture contains soybean grits. The slugburger is made into small patties, which are fried in canola oil. They are traditionally served topped with mustard, dill pickles, and onions on a small 5-inch hamburger bun.

Borroum's Drug Store. Est. 1865
Still operated by Corinth's first female pharmacist.
The fountain inside the pharmacy offers old-fashioned cokes and malts!

Slug Burger Festival flyer

I found this banner funny, posted at the gate of the festival.
Look closely at boy and girl in the picture, looking down there pants...
"There is a difference!"
(brought to you by The Urology Clinic: Corinth, MS)