Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss ( and lucky, lucky me)


One Cupcake Two Cupcake

Chocolate or Vanilla

I will almost never ever turn down a cupcake or a slice of cake, most of my family knows this, and chances are if I do, I am sick. So when I went to the Susquehanna Valley Preschool on Wednesday for a Dr. Seuss birthday party and was offered a cupcake I gladly said yes, and I was even more glad after I tasted it that I said yes. They were very cute cupcakes to begin with, complete with a marshmallow cat in the hat hat on top. Then I took my first bite….and after that I consumed it like a vacuum cleaner in a dust factory. I don’t really remember much in the minutes following that, I was sort of in a cupcake bliss state of mind trying to get all the crumbs off the wrapper I possibly could. The frosting and cupcake almost melted in my mouth in a state of perfect harmony with one another, complimenting each other, not struggling for dominance, but working together to create the perfect cupcake. I want to repeat that again, The Perfect Cupcake !  They were so good I had to email the school this morning to find out where they came from. All I can say is that is one lucky preschool class, a student’s mother runs the Bella’s Bliss Bakery in Lewisburg, and boy does she know what she is doing. So, with that said, on a scale of 1 to 10, I give those cupcakes a 13, that’s how good they were.


Valentines Day Dinner ( a bit late)


Ok, first, I realize this post is a few days late, but I only cooked the dinner on Sunday because of our work schedules and general life craziness, an

d before you ask, yes, I checked with my wife first that it was ok that I cook the big Valentines Day dinner on Sunday first so I would not get in trouble. (plus I bought her some jewelry earlier in the week for Valentines Day) So with that s

aid, knowing that she was getting a good dinner later in the week it gave her something to look forward to and help her through her week.

I wouldn’t tell her what I was cooking, after being married for a few years there are little surprises left for couples so I cherish them when I get the chance. Knowing how much she likes lobster, and how rarely she gets it ( I won’t eat it, and yes, I have tried it) I had decided ahead of time to shell out and get a live lobster from our grocery store. Never before had I actually cooked a lobster by myself. When I was a kid growing up a uncle of mine would bring them from Long Island and I would play with them with a drumstick I had, but that was a long, long time ago. To go with the lobster I cooked up mashed sweet potatoes, another first time, homemade corn bread, and for desert, a homemade blueberry pie with a homemade flaky pastry dough crust, and yes, that was my first time making a blueberry pie as well. 

Now I realize that most of that stuff is pretty hard to mess up unless you forget a ingredient, like serving the lobster without cooking it, or something like that (my mom once forgot to put in the baking soda into some biscuits and they were so hard we could use them for hockey pucks). But my point is, I never cooking any of that meal before, was still able to pull it off and get kiss and a big smile afterwords from my wife in thanks, not to mention a good laugh when I did plate up the lobster and my youngest daughter said, “look, there’s spiky”. Apparently they named him that while in the other room. So just like life, take a chance sometimes, go big, go daring, you just never know what you might get out of it, and for me, a kiss was well worth the work.



Peach Cobbler


ImageSo I have a confession to make, I had never, ever had peach cobbler before I went to South Carolina last week. I realize that is probably a sin to some people, but it never was something I felt compelled to try, I was always an apple pie kind of guy, and boy was I stupid. Now it probably helped that I was in the south and peach cobbler is a main stay dessert down there, or maybe it was just that I was really hungry, either way, it was fantastic. The peaches were sweet, juicy, and bold in their flavor, the crust was flaky but not dry, and it was warm, but not burn your mouth hot.

You see, sometimes I can be a chicken when it comes to trying new foods, even if they look terrific. My wife always, well, not always, but sometimes gives me a hard time about it, especially if the kids have to eat you better believe I have to, but it’s not a bad thing really. We only get a short time on this planet, and we should want to experience as much of it as we can, and that especially means food. Now I am not saying go out and eat everything you can lay your hands on (although that is tempting to do sometimes) but you shouldn’t be afraid of food either. I can’t say that means I am going to start eating onions (ugh!) or trying some of the crazy dishes out there, but I will at least consider ordering something other than the usual off the menu, and you should to.

I give the Parris Island Marine Corps Base Peach Cobbler 4 out of 5 peaches.

Mmmmm…. Donuts


Let me just get this out of the way, I LOVE Donut Day. Now with that said, I am not talking about Dunkin Donuts or Krispy Kreme, although I do like them, I am talking about those hand made, old fashioned, morsels of soft, moist, so tasty you can’t just eat only 2 or 3 of them and if you’re not careful you might eat 6 or so, donuts that are made at churches and fire companies on Fat Tuesday.

I picked up my dozen around 8:30 this morning from St. Peter’s United Methodist Church and had two gone almost before I left the parking lot. I ate two more a bit later this morning on my way to my first assignment, and have been struggling not to eat any more and have actually given some away so I won’t eat them all myself. Some people might find the taste of them a bit plain, but to me it’s not just about the sweetness of them, but a combination of the moistness in them, the flavor of them, and then the sweetness on top of that.

My grandmother when she was alive used to make old fashioned donuts out of actual potatoes and they were out of this world good, and these are the only kind of donuts that come close. A word to the wise for next year, find a place that is making them and get your order in early because they go quick. I heard a rumor that the Beavertown Fire Company sold out of their 775 dozen the Monday night right before Donut Day, and if that doesn’t tell you how good they are, well, I sure won’t be able to convince you.

I give them 5 out 5 Donuts.

Sweet Tea Southern Style


Location….Parris Island….

Mission….Consume mass quantities of Sweet Tea….

Status….In progress

I am writing this currently from my hotel in Beaufort South Carolina while covering the Educators Work Shop at the Parris Island Marine Corp base. It is currently 21:38 and I am coming down off of a incredible sweet tea sugar buzz after consuming 4 and 1/2 glasses of it in a perior of a couple hours.

This is my second trip down here for this workshop, and the first time I came and tasted that nectar from the gods I was hooked, instantly. Ever since that first trip 8 years ago, I couldn’t wait to come back to get my fix. You see, all the sweet teas and iced teas you can get in PA from any store or restaurant just doesn’t compare in not only sweetness, but flavor as well. It can’t just be sweet, it has to have that good tea flavor as well, no if and or buts about it. I don’t know how they do it, lord knows I have tried to duplicate it at home and failed miserably, just ask my wife, but there are no substitutes for real sweet tea brewed fresh in the south.

So with only a couple more days left here, I plan on getting as much of it as I can, to hopefully tide me over until the next time I can get down here for it, although most likely I will probably end up curled up on the plane ride home going through withdrawal symptoms from the lack of sugar in my blood stream. So, South Carolina Sweet Tea gets a 5 out of 5 star rating in my book any day.

Would You Like A Turkey Joint?

ImageIf anyone ever asks you that question, your immediate response should be yes please, followed by, may I have two please?

Probably not many people around here know what I am talking about, and a few may be scratching their heads as well. A Turkey Joint is not some delicacy from a turkey that no one knows about, nor is it something that you might smoke late at night on a college campus. Rather, its close to one of my favorite treats I have ever, ever had. Really, I am not sure if it falls into the dessert category or the candy, or if it transcends that all together and is on another, higher level.

I am originally from Central N.Y. which it seems to me, the only place you can find these delicacies. The story goes, or so I am told, that a old lady used to make them in her house, and you had to be lucky enough to catch her at the right time to buy them from her because they went pretty fast. Now they are made commercially, but are still just as good. What are they you ask? Well, I will try and do my best to explain them in a way to do them justice.

Picture this, if you can, a creamy, rich, milk chocolate center, with a few brazil nuts mixed in, then, wrapped in a fairly thin coating of silvery sweet ribbon like candy, about 6 inches long and the thickness of a thumb, and that, is a turkey joint. They are not perfect in appearance, some are a bit knobby, some are straight, some a little thicker than others, but their taste is other worldly with their perfect combination of flavors.

The first time my parents gave these to my wife (fiance at the time) as a gift, she looked at them funny because she thought they were dog treats, and well, she didn’t have a dog. After she tried them, well, lets just say I didn’t get many of them.

So, here is their website, https://www.turkeyjoints.com/catalog/ , go ahead and treat yourself to a jar, today, and if you see me on the street somewhere, feel free to share one, although I wouldn’t blame you one bit if you didn’t. ( I recommend the original variety)