Welcome to Southern Comfort!

Hi, I'm Elizabeth and I invite you to grab a glass of sweet tea and join me as I (along with my husband, John) renovate our love nest. We're both born and raised in the south and love to share with you some of our favorite recipes, stories and our life. We hope you'll come back often!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Tomato Pie

Do you ever have moments where you need something to take to a friend, a picnic, or a brunch and have no idea what?
I know I've been there.
This recipe will save the day. It's quick. It's easy. And it's delicious.

Tomato Pie

Using a deep dish pie pan. Makes 1 pie.

Ingredients:
3-4 medium or 1-2 large tomatoes peeled and sliced.
*-10 basil leaves
1/2 C. chopped scallions (using only the green part)
1. C. Mayonaise
1 C. Shredded mozarella chesse
1 C. Shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 Box rolled pie crust (found in refrigerator section. each box contains 2 pie crusts)

Bake 1 pie crust according to package directions.
Peel and slice tomatoes- let them drain.
Chop basil and scallions
When tomatoes are no longer draining, layer them in the cooked pie crust. Salt and Pepper to taste.
Spread basil and onion over tomatoes evenly.
Mix mayo and cheeses together. Spread evenly over tomatoes.
Place uncooked pie shell over pie and bake 30 mins @ 350 or until browned.

*If you're looking to be a little more ambitious, you can substitute the pre-made pie crusts for your own home made version. I would even venture into adding a little extra cheese on top of the crust, but you know, I'm an overachiever and lover of cheese. 

I am a true believer in sharing recipes and wonderful food. That being said, I'm sorry I don't have a picture to go along with the recipe. But it's too good not to share, and I thought that was more important. :) 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Fall Around the House

 Over the past few weeks I've really enjoyed getting the house looking like Fall. I must say, one of my favorite places to decorate is our mantle. I've never had a mantle to decorate until we moved into this house. I never get tired of playing with it. Last year we were in the midst of our wedding so all the decorating was put on hold until the Thank You notes were written and mailed. So finally, here's what I did for Fall this year.

I love how simple it is. Simple and warm. I threw some pillow covers over our existing pillows. This way I dont' have a ton of extra pillows everywhere, but I still get to change them out for the seasons.
 This is the FIRST ever picture of this window on the blog. I hated it until a week ago when we cut down the size of the hardware and bought a new valance. Before this, it looked horrible. I had been trying to make my own valance, but it looked horrible. So I took it down. Then I tried to make a roman shade, but it looked worse. So it stayed up for about 4 months until I took it down. If you've come over and seen it, I apologize at how horrible it looked. See, I just got stuck. I didn't know what to do about this window. I didn't know what I was going for and I couldn't get out of my rutt. So the ugly stayed. It stayed until JCPenny had a sale 2 weeks ago. And my problem was solved with $12.00 on the debit card, free shipping and 4 days of patiently waiting. The ugly window is no more! It's been such an ordeal with this window.. like 15 + months or ordeal. sigh. I am so proud to be able to *finally* share it with you. And just so you know, I bought 2 valances that day. This one for a neutral color and a red one for the winter months. I can't wait to show you in a few weeks :) yes, christmas is around the corner. shhh. Don't tell John. He's likely to attack you at the mention of the "c" word right now. Until the Halloween candy is gone, it can not be mentioned in our house without a hissy-fit.

Anyways...

Now, beause I've never shown you the window, this little desk was never pictured either. My Dad refnished it and gave it to John and I as a christmas gift 2 years ago. I just love it. The lamp I found at Goodwill and recovered a drum shade with some muslin I had on hand. It's the perfect place for Trick-or-Treat candy our dessert bowl before all the kids come to eat steal it on the 31st.

Please ignore the box of crap under the desk. It's the Goodwill box. No judging.
Here's another look at the room from the viewpoint of the fireplace. Again, ignore the wreath on the staircase. I have run out of 3M command sheets to hang it on the door. It's there as a reminder for me ;) That's how I roll.


The table was decorated using a card a made at one of my stamping events. I just popped it into an old frame. The leaf I tore off from one of the garlands and put it in a frame too.



My other favorite place to decorate is our buffet in the kitchen. Here it is after a little Fall love.


Everything looks better under glass doesn't it?
Check out that awesome pumpkin cake my mom made! She's where I get my wannabe baking skills from.


I love this little sign. I can keep it up all season long. It's another fun decor item I made at stamping class.



















What about your home? What have you done to bring fall in? 

I'm linking up with the DIY Showoff's Fall Festival Linky Party. Check out all the entrys and awesome inspiration!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Stuck in a Bind

Let me take y'all on a little journey with me. This is a journey of childhood, sibling rivelry, and things Mom didn't know.


It was the early 90's. I grew up in a ranch style house in a quiet neighborhood. Most of the houses were built in the 1960's. Large trees cover the roads, generous sized lots, and lots of hills. Kids were around to play with on the weekends and afternoons after school, but for the most part it was a quiet neighborhood in mid Raleigh. Our house was on a corner lot, and the back yard backed up to our elementary school. We had a pretty large yard. About 3/4 of an acre. Mom and Dad wanted us to have a large yard to play in, and we loved it. Large oak trees provided shade for the driveway and parts of the back yard. We had a swing set, sand box and a tire swing. Our black lab, Blackberry, would always romp with us. We had plenty of room to ride our bikes and run around like kids do. Later, it was also where our wedding reception was held.


 Every morning my brother and I would get ready for school, grab our lunch boxes and walk up the sidewalk to school. He would always walk a few steps ahead of me as the 'leader'. I suppose this is what big brothers do, they lead. Younger siblings follow. He always had to be first.


Once my younger sister, Annie, was in Kindergarten, I took over the roll of the leader. Evan, moved on to better things in middle school. With our school being so close, it made after school events and activities so much easier to attend, for us and Mom and Dad.


On this particular fall evening, Mom and Dad needed to attend a parent-teacher conference for Annie. It was the beginning of the school year, and Annie was so excited to show Mom and Dad her desk, her classroom and show off her new school for them.
Because Annie was the child involved, the older kids stayed home. Knowing our parents were just a few feet away, we felt comfortable with them leaving us for an hour. Just to be on the safe side, Mom agreed to pay Evan to watch me and she paid me to be good. A win-win.


So off Annie, Mom and Dad went toodling down the sidewalk. I, like any other 9 year old, decided to see what Evan was doing. I will say this in secret, I loved to pester him. And because I like to pester him, we fought. A lot. We wrestled, hit, poked, and body-slammed each other until one of the other cries (it was usually me) or got hurt (again, usually me). Well, on this particular night, Evan wasn't having a bit of it. He warned me, I didn't listen (as usual). He man handled me into the kitchen and got me in one of the kitchen chairs.
Next thing I know, out comes the Duck-Tape. Evan was the neighborhood yard mower and always smelled of gasoline, exhaust, greas and oil. I don't know how he got his hands on Duck Tape that quickly. Probably had it hidden in his pants for this very moment.
He wraps me up so tight in that chair, I can't move. He leaves. I am left in the kitchen. Awesome.
I thought he was playing a game and I knew in a few minutes he would come back and get me and we would continue our 'rough housing' as Dad put it. He came back. But he came back with his socks. His sweaty, grass-covered, exhaust smelling, nasy BOY socks. My hands were tied. I had no way of blocking it. I was doomed. He stuffed those things IN my mouth. Me screaming and writhing the entire time. I can still taste them to this day. He stood over me so proud, like I was some kind of creation he had built. Smiling.

I didn't cry, in my head we were still playing a game. A mean game, but still a game. I sat there. I'm sure giving him the best 'sad' eyes I could muster. Then he turned and went into his bedroom. Crap. Now I'm stuck. Stuck, bound, gagging and beginning to panic a little. I got MAD.
Really, really, fuming, mad. I'm sure I was a sight. Mom's going to killlll him once she finds out what he's done! I'm so tattling on his butt when she comes home.
So I sit. And wait. And wait. And wait. Not the fun evening I envisioned. At. All.
After waiting for seemed like forever. It was proabably no more than 30 minutes in real time, he came back for me. He knew the others would be getting home any minute. Since he didn't want to be getting in any trouble (which I had total intentions of!) he let me go.

I ran to the bathroom, closed the door and brushed my teeth like they would fall out if I didn't. I flossed, used mouthwash, the works. Anything to get that nasty boy sock taste out! Once done, I came out to find Evan waiting for me in the hallway. Great. What now? Atomic wedgie? Swirly?
Quietly he came closer to me. I was ready to run if need-be. He simply said, "if you want to get paid, you won't say a word".
He had me. I wanted my money. Mom would know I had pestered him into putting me in that chair if I said what he did. Then I really wouldn't get my money. But he wouldn't either.
I calmly brushed past him and went to watch TV. I needed to think about this. Not 10 minutes later did Mom and Dad walk through the door.
I never said a word.

It wasn't until 7 years later did the truth come out about that night. We were sitting as a family for dinner and talking about how we used to beat each other up. Evan said, "remember when I Duck-Taped you to that chair and stuffed my dirty socks in your mouth and left you there? That was awesome".
I thought Mom was going to come out of her chair, cross the table and wring his neck. Never had I heard her squeal like that.
Dad just chuckled.
I sure am glad I didn't tell her.I enjoyed him tattling on himself.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

1 Down

We spent this past weekend re-living our wedding as it was our first anniversary together. I must say, we milked it for all it was worth (because we'll never have another 1st anniversary again). In true anniversary fashion, we decided to keep with the traditional gifts each year.. and this year was paper.

I didn't have much of a problem coming up with a gift for John, what with my creative-ness and "out of the box" thinking. But my poor engineer husband, who needs to have order, structure and straight-forward-ness had a harder time. So what did we end up doing and receiving?

I gave John a picture book of our wedding and pictures. I had it made through Picaboo, as I got a steal of a deal for it, a free hard-back book up to 20 pages (I got the deal sent to me through my email.. otherwise known as spam. But who can resist that kind of spam?). So each evening I sat on our couch while we watched TV and edited, copy & pasted, and clicked my evening away for about 2 weeks. John just thought I was playing on facebook the whole time ;) I added several extra pages to fit everything I wanted to. Lucky for me he LOVED it. Now we can tote around our picture book to family reunions, get-togethers and such instead of lugging our wedding albums with us. It will make a wonderful coffee table book, and conversation piece for the rest of our lives. Sentimental, thoughtful, and paper = success!

John did manage to give me a gift that I will hold dear to me the rest of my life. He surprised me with a basket. Not just your run-of-the-mill basket, but a basket filled with paper (a subtle nod to our requirement). After looking closer, he had printed out the menu to where we were to have dinner that night, as he had prepared reservations for us at The Angus Barn. It was rolled up and wrapped with ribbon. He had also printed (and cut out and backed with coordinating card stock) the movie listings for our local theater. Who knew my John could be so creative?!? (my card making must be rubbing off on him.. hehe). Along with the other paper items in there, were hand written love letters and poems (also cut out and backed with card stock) So sweet!

We spent the day around the house and doing some piddly things. Dinner was wonderful and so special. Because it was our anniversary, they gave us a celebratory 8 inch pound cake to take home. So yummy! We had some time to kill before the movie, so we went shopping a little and walked outside enjoying the cool fall weather. We chose to see a scary movie, because last year after our wedding (we had a honeymoon at home), we chose to see a creepy film, so we decided to keep the tradition.

Sunday night we went to dinner at my parents house and celebrated with family and friends. Mom had the top of our wedding cake waiting for us for dessert as she had frozen it for us. I'll admit, we were both really sceptical about how good our cake would be a year later. We had visions of freezer burnt icing and dry cake crumbles, but to our relief it was AWESOME! We all agreed it was better than on our wedding day!
So there you have it. Our first anniversary. Sentimental, traditional, and perfectly us. I plan on keeping the sweet poems and letters John wrote and framing them for a wall in our house. Do you have any anniversary stories or fun things you do each year? I can't wait to hear!

Hmm.. now what to do about year 2. Cotton. Ideas?

**as a side note, today, John and I *finally* booked our honeymoon. We'll be living it up in the Mexican Riviera early next year!**