Search Results for 'p allen smith'


Well, here we are at the beginning of 2015. The time when many bloggers roll the highlight reel from 2014. (Much like the paper your teachers used to make you write every year on the first day back from summer vacation.)

Okay, I’ll play along. WordPress is so nice to send all the “best of” stats at the end of the year.

Most of the posts that were popular this year were not even from this year. I guess that is a good thing.

#1-Christmas Party Food is a post from 2011. It features a Snowman Cheese Ball, a Christmas broccoli appetizer, and a Turkey Cranberry Ring.

#2-I Say it Every Year-an adorable Nutcracker gift box craft from 2012.

#3-Banana Pudding from 2013. If you haven’t tried this yet, put it on your things-to-do list for 2015!

#4-Apple Slaw (2011) Ironically, this was a dish that my crew was not super wild about. I guess the pictures grabbed some attention. Hey, that is why I tried it!

#5-DIY Placemats (2013) I love this craft tutorial. I have used this method several times. I have some candy corn fabric I plan to try at some point.

So, those were the overall top five posts here at Pork Chop Tuesday.

Curious about 2014?

The busiest day around here was the day I posted my Project 180 photography project. It was so gratifying to work on something for so long and see it to a successful completion. Please go check it out. I really enjoyed it!

Ecclesiasties3

I did a series of posts about my trip to P. Allen Smith’s Moss Mountain Farm. It was a lot of fun with lots of opportunities for photography practice. You can check out the series below. I think my favorite was the Rose Garden.

There was actually one more Moss Mountain post–a post-series post.

DIY Notecards

selection of notecards

Lasagna Cups was a fun, new recipe to try. We all liked these! I need to make them again–soon!

Lasagna Cups

We enjoyed trying out some new restaurants, well, new to us. Green Leaf Grill and The Root Cafe to name a couple.

Rounding out the year were Bananas Foster with friends and the Thanksgiving 101 series.

Most of the folks who visit Pork Chop Tuesday are from Pinterest or Facebook-along with folks who are subscribers.

To all of you, I say…

ThankYouNote

Thank you for visiting my little corner of the internet.

Subscribing to Pork Chop Tuesday is easy. Click the home button at the top of the page or here. Go over to the right. You will see a box with “Email Subscription” on it. Just click on the “sign me up” button!

You can also follow along on social media. Sometimes I post things there that don’t get on the blog. Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest are the social media outlets I use.

Thanks for all the comments and support in 2014. I hope to hear from you in 2015.

 

 

 

 

 

Finally time for lunch. I had grown quite thirsty on our Moss Mountain Farm tour. I was starting to get a little hungry, too.

Our tour group was led into the barn for lunch.

barn

Each reserved table was set with lovely white roses.

white roses table arrangement

We sat with some nice folks from Little Rock, Conway and Fort Smith, AR as well as Atlanta, GA.

The barn holds some of Allen’s paintings from his Squash series.

squash paintings

It felt pretty fancy for a barn! If only I could get our shed cleaned out, I’d have a place just like this. HA! Okay, maybe not JUST like it.

barn lighting

I love how  antique farm tools were used as decoration.

antique farm tools

Lunch was a bed of fresh, mixed greens topped with tomatoes, cucumbers, and grilled chicken.

salad with grilled chicken, grape tomatoes, and cucumbers

I have a confession to make. I don’t like tomatoes. Tomato sauce, salsa, tomatoes cooked in soups I’m okay with all that. Well, as long as they are chopped up really small. I think it is a textural thing. When the plate showed up with all those beautiful tomatoes I got a lump in my throat knowing I was going to have to eat them. I tried not to turn my nose up too noticeably. Here I was, a food blogger, at a fancy farm! I’m supposed to love all vegetables, right? Sorry.

I decided to be a big girl and try my first grape tomatoes. Guess what–I kinda liked them! There was not as much slimy surface as on a slicer. I found them to be a little on the sweet side. Believe it or not, I ate almost all of them! I must say, I was proud of myself.

grilled chicken

I also felt like I HAD to eat my salad before I dug into my dessert!

pie

Buttermilk Pecan Pie with fresh whipped cream!

Here’s a closer look. Try not to drool on your screen, please.

buttermilk pecan pie

YUM!

As we finished our dessert, Laura, our guide, answered questions from the crowd while we waited for Allen to arrive from Little Rock.

We stepped out on the drive for our meet and greet time. Allen is such an expressive person, it is hard to grab a good picture of him.

chattiing with P. Allen Smith

I looks like he is telling us a fish tale here. More than likely he is telling us about his chickens and their “poultry palace”.

P. Allen Smith

Next, it was time for photos and autographs in the gift shop.

Mom and I still had to see the chickens, roses, and vegetables in a matter of about 30 minutes! We made a dash to be first in line. Fortunately, Mom had made her cookbook purchases when we first arrived at the farm.

Moss Mountain Farm gift shop

Mom with P. Allen Smith

We zoomed down to the end-of-the-earth to see the chickens.

They were chickens.

Poultry Palace at Moss Mountain Farm

It was interesting to see all the different varieties. It was dark, so that made it difficult to photograph.

rooster

red, white, and black

poultry in black and white

farm baby

I liked the chickens. I just was anxious to see the Rose Garden before our time was up.

We trudged back up the hill toward the rose garden. Allen was finished with autographs, so we stopped for one more picture. Earlier, I had only taken pictures of Mom. I decided I wanted one too.

Looks like navy gingham was a good choice!

with P. Allen Smith

 

On to the roses!

The gardens on the back side of Moss Mountain Garden Home are just lovely. They called the area we toured next something specific like the South garden or something like that. For the life of me I can’t remember that name. Whatever it was differentiated this garden from the vegetable garden and the rose garden. I’ll share those with you soon.

Here is a view of the back of the house. I love the two-story screened porch.

screened porch

In this photo we are standing on a path between the Summer Kitchen and the Art House. (I failed to take a picture of these.) These facilities were not part of our tour, but we were allowed to peek in the windows.

Here is one of the water features on the property. If you squint at the middle of the picture you can see the Arkansas River. Remember, it was overcast the day we went.

garden fountain

The plants and flowers were lovely. I really enjoy touring gardens. I think I like it because I have a bit of a brown thumb. Seeing someone else succeed in that area is inspiring.

A couple of years ago my friend, Cathy, gave me some herbs to plant. I actually had success! I even planted more this year. There is hope for me yet!

Being the “green” gardener that I am, I am not 100% sure of all the names of the plants. I tried to look them up on the internet. You know, if it’s on the internet it must be true! wink wink

I believe this is called Allium. I really like the height and shape of these. The looked great in the kitchen.

allium

Lamb’s Ear always remind me of when my oldest was little. We would often stroll around the neighborhood after dinner trying to wear her out for bedtime. One of our neighbors had Lamb’s Ear around the mailbox.  Megan would always have to stop and pet the fuzzy leaves.

lamb's ear

The pink roses with the purple “whatevers” layered in front was stunning.

pink and purple flowers

This is Mrs. Big Fig, the huge fig tree in the middle of the path.

 

fig tree

I never knew this is what asparagus looked like in the garden!

asparagus

The lilies in my yard are no where near this tall.

lillies

There was a large variety of irises. I love the smell of irises. For some reason the smell reminds me of the taste of those marshmallow candy eggs we used to have at Easter when I was a kid. You know, the ones no one but Dad liked? Maybe the association has something to do with hunting Easter eggs while irises bloomed in the yard and I chowed down on candy! Dad wasn’t actually the only one who liked those things. The yellow ones were my favorite.

orange iris

purple iris

yellow iris

More irises around another water feature.

rock fountain

Some of the plants were ones I had never heard of or seen before…

…like Nicotiana. What a unique looking flower. I almost looks like a sea urchin.

nicotiana

Smoke Bush was a new one to me, too. I understand the textural difference in the landscape. However, I found myself wanting to bring this one into sharper focus for some reason.

smoke bush

I don’t know the name of this flower. It was just so tiny and cute, I had to include it.

tiny flower

Our guide showed us the way to the Rose Garden and Vegetable Garden, so we could tour on our own after lunch.

On our way to lunch, we visited the swans, Fred and Ethel. I saw on the P. Allen Smith Facebook page the other day that Fred and Ethel will be proud parents soon.

You can click on the gallery below to see these pictures better.

 

On to lunch–thank goodness!

rock wall

How about you? Do you have a green thumb or a brown thumb?

Are you a Master Gardener or a novice gardener?

 

For my birthday this year, my Mom promised to take me to tour P. Allen Smith’s garden home at Moss Mountain Farm.

sign

I have had the opportunity to meet and miss Allen several times. Click here.

Having seen my blogger pals talk about going to Moss Mountain on many different occasions, I was very excited to finally get to go for myself!

I didn’t exactly know what to expect from the tour. I knew there would be lunch and a house and chickens. I had no idea what the “dress code” for such an event was.  I decided to consult my ARWB friends for advice.

I’m going to Moss Mountain Farm tomorrow. It’s my first time. How should I dress?

  • Debbie Horton Arnold-Is it for one of their luncheon/tours?
  • Stephanie Crampton Buckley-Cute and comfy. Comfy because there’s a lot of walking around and cute because you will take a lot, and will want to be in, photos.
  • Sarah E. White-Rain boots since it will be muddy?
  • Debbie Horton Arnold-Cute but not dressy. I’ve worn nice jeans, cropped pants, and slacks before. Always with shoes you can walk around in a yard and garden with. (no heels) I hope you have a beautiful, fun-filled day. It’s a beautiful place. Take an apple for the donkey:)
  • Peggy Cox Bayer-Thanks, y’all. For my birthday my Mom bought us tickets for the luncheon/tour. We are just now finding/making time to go. Pray the rain holds off!
  • Peggy Cox Bayer-Thanks for the “donkey tip” Debbie Horton Arnold
  • Paige Ray-You ladies have fun today!!
    After all of that I was even more perplexed!
    That morning I thought I had the a perfectly cute and comfortable outfit picked out for the day. The weather man was calling for rain, so I knew rain boots were a possibility.
    light blue gingham with floral skirt
    Cute enough–but I felt all fidgety in the skirt for some reason. Perhaps a different skirt was the answer.
    light blue gingham with denim
    No. This just was not right.
    Then I remembered a springy green dress.
    green dress
    I wore this to take the kids to school. It really needed to be ironed. My white sneakers were not so white. I WAS GOING TO A FARM! WHY DID I WANT TO WEAR A DRESS?!
    purple gingham
    Next up was my purple gingham shirt with jeans. Jeans would be much more comfy if I ended up wearing my boots. That was it! I would wear my Converse sneakers and take my boots.
    Wrong!
    Don’t you HATE those days when nothing seems to be the right outfit?! UGH!
    I was running out of time AND patience. I knew the next outfit had to be “it” whether it was or not.
    I needed something on my arms because I tend to get cold. Apparently I was in a gingham mood, since I had already tried two gingham shirts.
    A gingham jacket was the winner! (I picked it up for 50¢ at Goodwill last summer.)
    gingham, converse, rain boots
    Hooray! Decision made. I wore the sneakers and threw the boots in the backseat.
    gingham jacket with converse

    As soon as we parked the car, my cute little sneakers went into my purse and on went the boots.
    I didn’t know if I would need to change shoes to go inside or not.
    stuffing shoes in my purse
    So, here is how I dressed to go to Moss Mountain Farm.
    arriving at the farm
    Jeans and rain boots turned out to be the perfect pairing for the day. No, they didn’t make me leave my boots at the door. I hauled my sneakers around unnecessarily. I was glad to have a jacket though.
    Stay tuned for more about the actual trip.
    Oh, in case you are wondering, I took all those clothing pictures days later. I wish I had actually taken a picture that day.  My bed looked like my closet exploded. I was not really planning to include a fashion post with my Moss Mountain adventures. However, when I relayed my fashion dilemma to my husband later that day, he got a huge kick out of it. I just thought y’all might, too!

One of my favorite activities at Blog Camp was getting to participate in 5K sponsored by New Balance.  The 5K came the morning after our delicious cupcake binge.

We were greeted bright and early by crazy people. Lisa and Ashley were way too perky and energetic for so early in the day. Runners-humph!

Really, they were lots of fun!

5k leaders

Since New Balance sponsored the run, all the New Balance wearers posed for a photo op.

New Balance in the 5k

Let me say this…I am not a runner. I walked the 5K. I walked the 5K with a big old camera draped around my neck. Now, THAT is exercise!

I didn’t have a planned partner for the walk. I ended up walking with Talya from Grace, Grits and Gardening. (Since I failed to get a picture of us together, I borrowed one from her website.)

talya

I’ve been following Talya for a while now, so I was really excited to get to know her! I love when she has musical pairings to go with her posts. Talya is a genuine gal. I really enjoyed sweating with her!

There were so many great sights to see along the race path.

Ferncliff Fog

We had a couple of challenges along the way. This was the only one I photographed. I was too busy sliding down a fire pole to take other pictures.

5k jumping jacks

Ferncliff Cabin

Ferncliff Chickens

Ferncliff Goat Garden

I was so inspired by the AWBU 5K that I entered a local race a couple of weeks ago.

The Great 5K Pumpkin Fun Run is a fun event that supports the Open Arms Shelter. Follow the link for more information about the shelter.

I had some great supporters walk/run with me.

pre race 2 2

pre race 1 2

Look at all the wonderful pumpkins and gourds that were available to purchase. (These pictures were taken while I was on my walk the day before the race. That is why there are no people in the pictures.)

depot

colorful pumpkins

gourds

bumpy pumpkins

white pumpkins

pumpkins

All of these beauties came from our friends’ farm.

How cute is this house of pumpkins?!

pumpkin house 2

And look who was at the event sharing fall decorating tips…

gourd garland 2

P. Allen Smith! I did say hello! Unfortunately, I looked like this…hot and sweaty!

post race 2

The kids took off and left us right off the bat and had a blast. I did actually run bits and pieces of the 5K but walked mostly. Who knows, maybe I’ll do another 5K and actually run the whole way–someday.

Has it already been a week since I was at AWBU Foodie Friday? Wow! Time really gets by in a hurry!

Look at these adorable little recipe books that greeted us as we arrived. Julie from Eggs and Herbs made them for us! We each had our own blog name on our own notebook. Thanks, Julie. I know that was time consuming.

handstamped recipe books

After spending a bit of time socializing we started the program.

First we heard from Greg Patterson from Farm Bureau. You can find Greg over at Taste Arkansas.

He is also in charge of Front Porch Magazine. As a Farm Bureau member, I enjoy getting this magazine in my mailbox.

Screen shot 2013-09-13 at 5.41.17 PM

Next up was Chef Donnie Ferneau. You can read about his newest restaurant, Cellar 220, here.

Chef Donnie Ferneau

Chef Ferneau gave us some chefly advise:

•Buy fresh, in season, and local

•Practice your knife skills

•Planning-everything has its place. Do some pre-cutting to make your meal prep. go more smoothly.
• Menu-Choose your menu wisely.
•Cook everything at 500˚
Dr. Meenakshi Budhraja aka Dr. B talked about healthy eating.
Dr. Meenakshi Budhraja aka Dr. B
I loved how she said you choose your health. “You choose health or you choose disease.”
Big take-aways from Dr. B:
•Only drink water
•No snacks
•Cook at home with great recipes you read on Pork Chop Tuesday. Okay, I added some of those words.
Kelly Brant, food editor at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, spoke about some legal matters concerning recipes and food.
Kelly Brant-AR Democrat-Gazette
•ALWAYS give credit to the original source. Say something like “adapted from” or “inspired by”, otherwise you are plagiarizing!
•If using a cookbook, link to the author’s website or publishing house or a local bookstore.
•A recipe is considered a list. A list can not be under copyright protection.  Photographs ARE protected under copyright laws.
Liz Bray is a personal chef from Benton, AR. She was very fun and energetic. Plus she gave us some samples!
Liz Bray-Just Leave it to Liz
•FAT IS BACK! I know you are all glad to hear that! Gone are the days of “fat-free” this and that. Our bodies need fat!
•Flax seed, a natural laxative, is also helpful with keeping hot flashes in check. I think I’ll tuck that little tidbit back for later use!
•Extra Virgin Coconut Oil has the same healthy properties as breast milk. Hmmmm.
•She also had this fancy pressure cooker. Now, she was not selling these cookers. She just happened to be using hers for her demonstration.
It was at this  point I had to leave the Foodie Friday event. I had such mixed emotions about leaving. Perhaps that contributed to my nervousness. I really didn’t want to miss a minute of the conference. The Foodie Friday was a bonus event. The actual kick-off of the conference was that evening.
I missed out on getting to meet Stephanie from the Plain Chicken blog.
pen_logo
I have been stalking her blog for a while now. She gave a talk entitled “The Business of Food Blogging”. I hated to miss that!
I also had to miss the Big Event Challenge and the Kick-Off and reception with P. Allen Smith. That was a bummer. That makes TWICE I’ve missed hanging out with him. I did, however, get to meet him at a Blue Cross event one Saturday morning. He just seems like such a nice guy!
with P.Allen Smith
Why did I have to miss all this good stuff?
My daughter has the privilege of being the drum major of the band this year! That night was her very first game. There was no way I was going to miss out on that!
So, I drove an hour back home, then close to two hours to the away game. It was hot, so the band didn’t wear their full uniform.
I was so proud of my girl! I was also very happy she didn’t fall off the drum major stand!
drum major
So, Saturday morning I got up really early and drove back to the conference. I got to see a beautiful sunrise.
When it came time to go to the break-out sessions, there was one called “Being a Mom and a Writer”. I’m sure there was some fabulous information in that session. However, I felt like I had LIVED that experience the previous night.
Blogging is fun. I enjoy it. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll even make some money somehow. However, for now my family has to come first. Your daughter only has ONE first time directing the band. I wouldn’t have missed it for the world!

What is a girl to do?! Be a good blogger and go the event for bloggers she signed up to attend? or Be a good blogger and go to get some GREAT blog material?

Yes, I chose the former.

I recently signed up to be part of a blogger network called Arkansas Women Bloggers.

It turns out, shortly after I signed up, I read that the annual meet-up was going to be in Little Rock soon. I was super excited! The whole reason I signed up on the network was so I could get to know some other local bloggers.

I committed to go.

Come to find out, the meet up was going to be on the same day that Chip had to work. He wasn’t just working working. He was covering the Salsa Party his company was sponsoring with P. Allen Smith, one of our local celebrities. You may have seen him when he was on the Today Show.

So, Chip and the girls went to the Salsa party and I went to blogger party.

The blogger party was held at the Historic Arkansas Museum. The museum even gave us all a 20% discount card to use in the gift shop–which, sadly, I forgot about until later that night when I was emptying my pockets.

These are the folks who came to the event. You know that first one!

Peggy Bayer – http://porkchoptuesday.com
Lisa Mullis – http://www.arkansasoutside.com/ and http://freneticfitness.wordpress.com
Tracy Knight – http://iheart-tknight.blogspot.com
Gina Knuppenburg – http://isogina.blogspot.com
Lindsay Irvin – http://arkansasbride.com
Kelcie Huffstickler – http://thisbeautifulinheritance.com
Blair Tidwell – http://littlerockfamily.com
Anne Weaver – http://crafty.littlerockmamas.com and http://sewing.craftgossip.com
Natalie Ghidotti – http://ghiodotticommunications.com
It was a good time, and I got to meet some really nice folks.
These ladies were our hostesses for the day. They are the ones who run Arkansas Women Bloggers. Left to right you have Fawn from Instead of the Dishes, Natalie Ghidotti from Ghidotti Communications (she was actually our guest speaker not one of the blog ladies), Stephanie from The Park Wife, and Julie from Eggs & Herbs.
I learned some great blogging tips. I hope to have time to test these out soon. Biggest tip, for blog life AND real life, be yourself! Don’t do things on your blog because you see some big-time blogger do them. Make your own footprint.
It was a fun time. I even scored some jam from The Park Wife. That will be in another post.
While I was at the meet up, the rest of the gang was at the Salsa Party. Fortunately, Chip was there to take pictures for the company.
Here are some of the highlights from their event.

You gotta have a piñata at a Salsa party!

Salsa dance instructors, Jeremiah and Mallory form Arthur Murray Dance Studio, were incredible to watch!

They even gave lessons.

Do you recognize the students?

There was even a Mariachi band! Oh, wait, maybe not.

Of course the whole reason for the party was to drum up interest in the company store. What better way than to bring in a celebrity!

P. Allen Smith talked about container gardening first.

The girls really enjoyed this part. They have their own container garden they are trying out this year. They had lots of questions.

I bet my friend, Cathy, had something to do with those Bonnie Plants! You may remember Cathy from my tomato basil soup post.

I had to put this picture in there because I liked the little flags in the background. Kristy and her crew did a great job with the decorations!

Now that everyone knows how to GROW the ingredients for salsa, they can all MAKE the salsa!

Yummy!

The recipe says to grill or roast  the tomatoes first. Interesting.

This is the recipe card that went with the salsa.

Blue Cross passed out these handy cutting mats as well.

Ah, yes, my family loves me. They know I do not care for cilantro. So, what did they do? They took a picture of it for me!

Yes, they do love me! They got me a signed copy of P. Allen Smith’s book, Seasonal Recipes from the Garden, for Mother’s Day. They are sneaky!

Mr. Smith was kind enough to pose with the company mascot, Blue Ann Ewe.

I did make it to the Salsa Party in time to see the dancers and do a little dancin’ myself.
It sure looked like a good time was had there.
We all had a great day!