Sunday, September 20, 2020

Happy Fall, Y'all! Our Autumn Bucket List


Can you believe fall weather is here? It was such a hot and humid summer with temps in the 90s for weeks on end. The cooler temps are going to be a blessing with all that we have going on. Troy and I have been invited to join our blogger friend, Leslie at Once Upon A Time And Happily Ever After in creating an Autumn Bucket List for 2020. 

Here is what we have planned:

LSU Games - We will be watching the games from home and will not be able to tailgate but it will be exciting to see how LSU does this year. We will certainly miss Joe Burrow but Myles Brennan has a lot of potential to win a championship game this year!

Engagement Party/BBQ Couple Shower - Someone in our family is engaged to be married next year. We received an invitation and RSVP'd to attend their party/shower next month. It is the first gathering we will attend since Covid.  

Company is Coming! - My sister will be visiting from Texas in October and we are excited to see her. The last time we were able to visit in person was Christmas of last year. 

Celebrate a Birthday - It's hard to believe that our youngest daughter will be 25 in October! We will celebrate this milestone with her next month.

Visit our Granddaughters - We had planned to visit our oldest daughter and her family over Labor Day weekend. But the hurricane changed our plans. It will be good to see them again because we have missed them so much!

Hunting Season Begins - Troy will be making plans to go deer and duck hunting very soon. He will probably ask our son and brother in law to join in the action. There will probably be some Fall fishing trips thrown in the mix, too.

Ladies Night - I plan to attend a ladies gathering later this month. We will have a outdoor picnic on the patio. 

Celebrate more Birthdays! - We have lots of November birthdays in our extended family, including our son, my Mom and yours truly. I can't believe I am turning 50 this year! Age is just a number, right?

It will be a wet and rainy week due to the new storm in the Gulf, "Beta." I have big plans to make a homemade chili for us. I have been wanting to enjoy some Chili Fritos; but, it has been way too hot. Hope y'all have a great week!

Happy Fall, Y'all!


 


Sunday, September 13, 2020

Labor Day Weekend

We spent Labor Day weekend in one of the best places to fish in the state of Louisiana; Grand Isle.  Such great memories of wonderful times spent at a family member's camp, right on the beach of Grand Isle. The weather was warm and we spent a lot of time on our boat. We explored the Gulf, the Leeville marsh and some Fourchon area marshes.

Anne made sure to take some pictures of some of the camps and scenery to share with you. In Grand Isle, camps can be anywhere from small getaways to large, beautiful showplaces.

Beach View from the Balcony of the Camp


Colorful Camps overlooking Caminada Bay


Three Pastel Colored Camps in a Row



Most camps have unique names. Here are a few:
Sea La Vie
Therapy

Beach Blessing

A couple places to visit would include the local sno-ball stand and the popular restaurant Hurricane Hole.


We caught plenty of fish but many were undersized. Here are some of the types of fish we caught:

Gafftopsail Catfish

Spot Approving of the Release

Undersized Mangrove Snapper

Spotted Seatrout aka Speckled Trout

Ladyfish

Black Drum

Speckled Trout

The Obligatory Shark

One of the mornings we were returning from fishing, there was a huge Trump parade of boats. There were hundreds of boats organized for a ride and it was something we had never experienced. Nearly all were decorated with American and pro-Trump flags.

Trump Boat Parade

A Boat Getting Ready to Join the Parade

Three Ladies about to Join the Parade

Grand Isle is such a wonderful asset to South Louisiana. Here are a few beautiful photos of a coastal sunrise, sunset and some storm clouds on the horizon.

Morning Sunrise from near Fourchon, LA

Sunset from Caminada Bay

Storm Clouds in the Distance from Grand Isle's Caminada Pass




Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Easy Peasy Fried Shrimp

 Last weekend we had some beautiful sunny weather so we took the boat down to Cocodrie, LA and did a little fishing. The fish were biting but unfortunately, all undersized so it was a catch and release kind of day.  On the way home, we stopped and bought some fresh, 16-20 count shrimp to bring home.  Troy loves fried shrimp and I made sure to take pictures of the steps to share with you. It's very easy and tastes great!

First, peel and de-vein the shrimp. You can make quick work of this by removing the heads and then raking the prong of a fork along the back. This step will open the shell and remove the vein all at once. It takes a little practice at first.



Next, prepare your batter (I use the Oak Grove Chicken Fry).  Empty the contents of the mix into a Ziploc or paper bag. Then, whisk 2 eggs with one small can of evaporated milk into a bowl.  Place 10-12 shrimp at a time into the wet mixture then into the dry mix and shake until well coated.  Set aside until all of your shrimp are battered.

Once you have all of your shrimp battered and ready, add peanut oil into your Fry Daddy up to the fill line.  Heat to 350 degrees.  Once the light turns off, your oil is ready for the battered shrimp.  Place 15 shrimp at a time into the hot oil and fry until golden brown. 


The batter is crispy and slightly spicy, just the way we like it. We like to enjoy our fried shrimp with some Dat Ketchup.  Enjoy

In other news, this has been a wild week of storms for South Louisiana. We did not get much from Marco; but, we still are waiting to see what Laura will bring. Praying that everyone in Louisiana and Texas will stay safe!

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Cornhole!

He says...

I realize I haven't been blogging much, lately. Thanks to COVID 19, I have been putting in  more time at work. And, with the new-to-us boat, there has been a lot of upgrading/updating going on with it...stay tuned for more on that subject!

For Father's Day, the kids and Anne gave me a set of regulation size cornhole boards! They were unfinished which gave us the opportunity to "make them ours." We ordered a pair of custom, LSU themed vinyl wraps on Etsy. The wrap application required priming the wood. I applied a water based, semi-gloss clear acrylic over the bare wood. But, I have read where you can also use any basic paint primer like Kilz.

Semi-Gloss Acrylic Prime
Next, Anne helped me lay out the vinyl which required application using a heat gun....which, coincidentally, we had. Use of the heat gun "activates" the adhesive properties of the vinyl decal. Once adhered to the board, I used a metal straight-edge and razor knife to trim the excess vinyl from the edges and adjacent the opening.

Trimming the Excess Vinyl
The next step was protecting the vinyl. That was done by using the water-based, semi-gloss acrylic clear. We used up a full quart which included some light, hand sanding between the last couple of coats using 400 grit sandpaper. I think I will get another quart and add a few more coats in the near future. It still doesn't have that "stick your hand in it" look.

We next purchased four stainless steel window seal latches and installed two on each interior length of the cornhole boards. This allows you to reach inside each hole and secure the two boards together.
Window Seal Latches on the Inside of the Boards
Now that the two are latched together, we needed a convenient way to carry the set as well the individual boards. These cast aluminum drawer pulls with fleur de lis accents were the perfect choice. We used some stainless steel machine screws, washers and nuts to secure them into place; drilling through the side of the cornhole board.

Carry Handles

Finished Set of Boards, Joined Together
We added some stainless steel eye lag screws to the center front of each one where we could hook a small stainless steel snap hook with a length of braided line....where when attached to the eye bolts, places the two boards at their regulation 27 feet apart.
Finished Board with Eye Bolt & Snap Ring
The unfinished cornhole boards were supplied with a set of green & tan colored cornhole bags. That really did not go well with our LSU themed vinyls. Amazon has many color choices and that provided us the option to pick our colors for the cornhole bags. Naturally, we opted for the purple and gold bags filled with corn to regulation size & weight. They came with a nifty sling pack for carrying the bags.


Looking at these photos, I think I'm going to add some decorative stainless steel corner protectors to the opposite side of the handles. This will prevent any scratching/damage on the sides in contact with the ground....or as in the picture....the concrete driveway!

Stay tuned for a future blog about what we have been doing with the boat. I also plan to blog a hunting season primer which will basically be a recap of this past hunting season. Happy Cornholing to everybody!

Saturday, June 20, 2020

A New Boat Needs a New Name

Happy Saturday, y'all!

In my last post, I mentioned that Troy was working on widening our driveway and gate for the new boat. He formed everything this week. This morning, he did the pour and finished the concrete. It was a hot morning for working concrete!

We bought a "new to us" boat, a used boat. It is a wonderful boat and just what we need. We had previously planned to have a bay boat built, but the builder was not able to build it. So, after patiently waiting for over a year, we decided to purchase "Simple Peddler" from an individual here in South Louisiana. We will need to give her a new name and could use some help. So far, our favorites are "Sea Green" and "Gulf Greens." Troy is very fond of having "Green" in the name. What do you think?

Our 24 foot long Gaudet Aluminum boat is a beauty and was custom built right here in our home state! It is powered by a 300 HP Suzuki outboard motor. We really like the dual console layout because we can put up the canopy and add the side curtains if we need additional protection from the elements. It's hard to find a dual console bay boat. They are almost a thing of the past. Most bay boats these days are center consoles. The benefit of a center console is that they offer more fishing room. Ultimately, we wanted the added comfort of the dual consoles. We think we have plenty of fishing room with this one!








This photo was taken by the original owner at a beach in AL.
 It was the photo he used in the listing; we were SOLD! 😍




Sunday, June 14, 2020

Shrimp burgers


Happy Flag Day, y'all! Hope you are enjoying some outdoor activities this weekend. We are working on widening our driveway for the new boat. It is a little larger than the one we had before so Troy is working on widening the fence gate and park pad.





Last summer, my sister found a great recipe for shrimp burgers on an episode of America's Test Kitchen.  I just so happened to have the cookbook (pictured below), and she prepared these burgers with some fresh, Louisiana shrimp. (If you don't have the cookbook, I'm sure you could also find the Southern Shrimp Burger recipe on their website). We are so blessed to have fresh and delicious Louisiana shrimp locally and it really made for a great burger!


The cookbook, recipe on page 572

Southern Shrimp Burger

We grilled the shrimp burgers, which makes for a nice crust.

Yum!

Some DAT Ketchup adds to the flavor of the shrimp burgers.

Hope y'all have a great week!  I'll come back and blog about some new boating adventures soon.
Anne




Sunday, April 26, 2020

In The Kitchen with Anne

Hello friends,

Hope you are all well and staying safe. Troy & I have been busy working extra hours these days so I have not been able to blog recently. But this weekend I found some time to spend in the kitchen and wanted to share what I've been up to.

A couple of nights ago, I made a quick and delicious supper with the help from Trader Joe's. I already had the ingredients on hand so that made for an easy meal, with the addition of a salad.  I prepared TJ's Lobster Ravioli along with their jarred Tomato Basil pasta sauce. I also had a mini loaf of their Ciabatta bread and it was perfect for just the two of us.


I sauteed some onion and garlic in olive oil; then, added the whole jar of red sauce.  Once the onions and garlic were cooked in the sauce, I added the ravioli to the pan and let it simmer for 10 minutes.  




While the ravioli was cooking, I made a Caprese salad with cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, fresh basil, olive oil, salt and pepper. (I also added some balsamic glaze once it was on my plate.)
It was an easy meal to make but tasted like I had spent all day cooking.

Another tip you might like to try is an easy way to add flavor to your water. Last summer, my daughter Kelsey & I went to the beach. Our hotel had a large dispenser filled with citrus infused ice water in the lobby near the pool area. We both had our insulated beverage cups with us and enjoyed the flavored water to keep hydrated and refreshed while in the sun. I re-created the concept at home without needing to pull out a beverage dispenser by juicing and freezing the citrus juice in ice trays. I really think I drink more water this way. Plus, we are adding a little vitamin C to our bodies doubling the benefit.




In other news, it is looking like our state might start Phase 1 out of the stay at home order on May 1st. I hope we can all stay safe while transitioning out of the quarantine. Take care and let me know if you try my tips and if you have any to share.