Monday, August 13, 2012

Celebrating: Visiting Cousins!

Celebrating: Visiting Cousins!: Not much going in my little world these days, so it was a great treat to have relatives from Iowa, Tennessee and Mississippi this past weekend

On Saturday night my mom hosted us all for dinner - 14 in all . Our guests from Iowa included my cousin Deb, her husband John and my Aunt Mona aka "Aunt Moner." (who lives in Buford, GA)  Aunt Mona is my Dad's sister and Deb's Mom.  Deb was a little over a year older than me and my "idol" growing up!  I commend her for putting up with her "pesty younger cousin" on some of those days! We lived about a block from each other growing up, and I think I was at their house as much as mine.   Many a happy memory of days gone past, that is for certain!  I'll never forget one of her birthday parties - we had a "dress-up" party.  But we didn't have a costume box with princess dresses and plastic sequin shoes. No sir, we were authentic Dress-up girls, wearing our Mom's clothes and jewelry, down to their several sizes larger high heels, which, I probably walked in better then than I can now!  After we were outfitted, we did a neighborhood promenade decked out in all our glory! 

My Aunt Mona is hoot!  She is so talented!  When she was younger, she  danced in a small group, along with Broadway Star Barbara Cooper that backed up Dick Van Dyke! She and my Dad and my Dad's brother Uncle Freddie loved to dance (I did not get that gene passed to me, BTW).  I remember many nights they would start dancing the jitterbug and other popular dances of the time.  I can still envision them "cutting the rug" in Aunt Mona's basement!  Aunt Mona also took Debi and I to see The Beatles when I was in the 4th grade.  Yep, the real Beatles!  It was a night filled with ear piercing screams, fainting girls and "Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs"!  I actually still have my "I love the Beatles" banner.

Our other guests included my cousins from Collierville, TN, Ann and Alvin.  Alvin is my Mom's oldest sisters, oldest child.  They were both born and raised in New Orleans, but moved to Collierville shortly after Katrina.  I did not get to see Alvin much growing up.  Just the occasional visit when we both happened to be visiting my grandmother in Mississippi at the same time.  However, for the last 10-15 years, the visits have happened much more frequently, as they both have the "travel bug."  I have really enjoyed getting to know both of them. We have had the opportunity to spend a couple of Florida mini vacations together and I can tell you...I finally have met my match with shopping!  Ann is a great shopping buddy!  Ann and Alvin came back Sunday evening for a visit before heading to Gatlinburg on Monday.

Aunt Ruby and Uncle George stopped by Monday on their way to Gatlinburg and spent the night with Mom.
A. Ruby and U. George  stayed with Mom on one condition...that she not cook!  So Mom relented and we got our favorite Chinese take-out, Mr. Egg Roll. My Aunt Ruby is one of my Mom's younger sisters. Aunt Ruby and Uncle George are just about the finest role models for Christians that I know.  Their knowledge of the Bible is staggering and their love for God is so evident in their life.   It is truly inspiring to be with them.

And, as usual, Saturday night looked like Thanksgiving, except for a Pork Roast instead of a Turkey.  I've said it once and I'll probably say it over and over again... my mama is the best cook and the best hostess ever! I am so in awe of her everytime I sit at her table.  She fills my plate and my heart with love!

Today's featured recipe is just one that Mom is famous for...Her Rum Cake.  She makes it in mini loaves and there is no telling how many of these little goodies that she has made and given away!  It has such a pretty presentation and they make perfect little hostess gift or for Christmas gifts.

Liz's Rum Cake

1 cup chopped pecans                                                  4 eggs
1pkg, yellow cake mix                                                 1/2 cup water
1 sm, package vanilla instant pudding                         1/2 cup butter
                                                                                      1/2 cup rum

Sprinkle nuts over bottom of pan (sprayed with oil) Stir together cake mix, puddig mix, eggs, water,butter and rum.  Pour batter over nuts,   Bake 35 minutes at 325.  (I use small pans)
cool 10 minutes.


1/2 cup butter                        1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar                            1/2 cup rum

Melt butter, sugar and water.  Boil 5 minutes.  Remove from heat, stir in rum.  Brush glaze evenly over top and sides of cake.

Ya'll come back!

May the Lord bless his people with peace & happiness & let them CELEBRATE!
Psalm 64:10

*Originally posted October 21, 2011

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