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    Saturday, February 14, 2015

    For Valentine's Day

    Invitation To Love
    by Paul Laurence Dunbar

    Come when the nights are bright with stars
    Or come when the moon is mellow;
    Come when the sun his golden bars
    Drops on the hay-field yellow.
    Come in the twilight soft and gray,
    Come in the night or come in the day
    Come, O love, whene'er you may,
    And you are welcome, welcome.

    You are sweet, O Love, dear Love,
    You are soft as the nesting dove.
    Come to my hears and bring it to rest
    As the bird flies home to its welcome nest.

    Come when my heart is full of grief
    Or when my heart is merry;
    Come with the falling of the leaf
    Or with the redd'ning cherry.
    Come when the year's first blossom blows
    Come when the summer gleams and glows,
    Come with the winter's drifting snows,
    And you are welcome, welcome.

    Paul Laurence Dunbar was one of the first African American poets to gain national recognition.
    From Poem-A-Day.

    Sunday, January 25, 2015

    Two good scenes...

    ...from very different shows.

    In The Fades, two best friends combat ghost zombie apocalyptic warriors.  No, not all at once, in succession-it makes sense on TV planet.  In any case, there's a great scene that I'm not sure came from the writers, the directors, or the actors.  Two best friends are sitting on a bench eating ice cream, delivering some fairly mundane exposition.  However, what makes the scene cool is that they eat a bite, trade ice cream, and then eat a bite. Then they trade again.  It's a wonderful character moment to show that these guys have been friends since they were probably about two years old.  It's also a good  Pope-in-the-pool moment from "Save the Cat." Pope-in-the-pool means that if you have to deliver exposition, there better be something fascinating like the Pope swimming in a backyard pool to hold the viewers' interest.  These guys trading ice cream sure did the trick.

    Another one is more of a line reading.  In Empire, Terrence Howard as Lucius Lyon is the patriarch of a family of three sons and a hip-hop impresario.  When one of his sons begins to date one of the hot young artists, Lucius says to his girlfriend/Girl Friday "Let's keep them together." It's a tossed off line, but the result is chilling because it shows not only the extent of his power but how far he's willing to meddle in the lives of those he's purported to love.  Terrence Howard gives it no weight at all in his delivery, which is what makes it land so hard.

    Sunday, January 4, 2015

    Then and Now

    I was organizing in the kitchen (I know, don't fall over) and I had put a plastic whisk in the "get rid of box." Kenan came through and pulled it out.  "This was Conan's first baseball bat.  I'm going to hang it on the wall."  I had no recollection, but then Kenan found this:

    And here's a photo from a couple of days ago for comparison:

    Love that he still has the same haircut 10 years later.  And he started out batting lefty!  So proud of this dude.  I think Northwest Seattle Little League is going to have a big year this year.

    Thursday, January 1, 2015

    New Recipe for New Year Good Luck

    If I were to have a popular post, it would be my annual one about Black Eyed Peas.  Here's the original recipe I shared: 

    And here's last year's round the world look at why the tradition might have started:

    (Not sure about 2013, not going to do a detailed search.  Maybe I was too busy cooking in 2013.)

    Anyway, as I pulled out the Family Cookbook (my sister asked for recipes from all of us and put them in a decorative binder, so it really is a family cookbook) I happened to find a recipe from my mom that looks amazing!  I may have to abandon my tried and true and try her Harvest Hoppin' John.  Good thing I have 364 days to decide!

    Harvest Hoppin' John

    2 T. Olive Oil
    1 small red onion, diced
    1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
    1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
    1 1/2 C. long-grain rice
    1 tsp coarse salt
    2 tsp fresh thyme
    Freshly ground black pepper
    2 C. chicken or veg broth
    2 C. fresh Black Eyed Peas
    2 C. chopped collard, mustard, or turnip greens (packed)
    8 fresh basil leaves, slivered
    2 tomatoes, cored and chopped
    2 green onions, minced

    Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, red pepper, and jalapeƱo pepper and salute 5 minutes.  Add rice, salt, and thyme, and stir until the rice is coated.  Add broth.  Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer about 10 minutes. Add peas and greens and continue to cook, covered, another 10 minutes, until all the liquid is absorbed, peas are tender, and rice is fluffy.  Remove from heat and stir in basil and black pepper.  Serve warm, topped with tomatoes and green onions.  Serves 6.

    Calories 212
    Fat 4g
    Cholesterol 0g
    Protein 5g
    Carbohydrates 39g
    Fiber 4g
    Sodium 443mg

    Doesn't that look amazing?!