When comrades seek sweet country haunts,
By twos and twos together,
And count like misers, hour by hour,
October's bright blue weather.
- Helen Hunt Jackson, October's Bright Blue Weather
Friday morning I took the girls grocery shopping with me while Mark and Ryan stayed home. It was a beautiful mid-morning and promised to be a lovely afternoon as well. I had the bright idea that we should spend time outdoors so I called Mark from the store to see if he'd be interested. We decided to wait til Saturday and head north to the Yamboree, a local festival celebrating that wonderful cash crop of the 1930's, the Sweet Potato, which is really not a yam. The Yamboree is one of the oldest folk festivals in Texas just behind the Tyler Rose Festival and the Jacksonville Tomato Festival.
We watched the Queen's Parade, ate some fair food, rode a huge ferris wheel, gawked at the crowds, visited the exhibit halls, the ag barns and all the other things most people do at festivals. Ryan found several of his friends in the ag barns with their livestock so he was busy socializing while the girls, Mark and I petted pigs, goats, calves, and bunnies. I think Sarah would have brought a baby cow home if she could have, or a goat! Then we hit the vendor area but didn't end up finding anything we couldn't live without. One of the exibits we especially enjoyed was the junior art and photography division. There are some very talented young artists in east Texas! Amy and Sarah are wanting to enter the drawing category and maybe photography too for next year.
As you may have noticed, there are no pictures. I decided to take a break from the camera this trip. Its a big, clunky thing and I did not feel like wagging it around all day. You'll have to imagine the dappled sunlight on the courthouse lawn, the chilly breeze, the greasy food smells, laughter, screams from the scary rides, and the sound of fiddles playing. You are off the hook as far as imagining the lovely livestock smells.
On our way to the car, we stopped at the monthly flea market across from the exhibit areas. Patricia, my homeschooling friend had a booth there promoting her business, Herbal Grace. She sells mineral make-up, organic teas, soaps, and much more. I left with a new eye shadow color(nutmeg) and some fantabulous organic seasoned salt. Her soaps are to die for too, LOVE them, and we use several of her other formulas.
We also nabbed a huge bucket of sweet potatoes for $4. Wooo hooo! Could have got a bushel for $13 but I didn't think we'd eat that many. How wrong I was...
Several days ago I came across a blog post featuring sweet potato fries and Hungry Girl had mentioned butternut fries not too long ago as well. I googled to get a good idea of what to do and went for it!
I preheated the oven to 425, sliced up our two largest "yams" into french fry sized pieces, layered them on two baking sheets(it is best if they don't touch and have space between each fry). I sprayed them with butter flavor cooking spray and sprinkled them with the new seasoned salt mixed with cayenne, onion, and garlic powders, and paprika. They went into the oven on the middle and lowest racks for 15 minutes. I stirred well and switched their places on the racks, baking for another 15 minutes. We scarfed them down with ketchup and there were no more. They are woooooonderful!!!! With a texture like a steak fry, creamy and soft on the inside, but not starchy(gritty) like regular fat fries, along side frizzled spiral ham and a spinach salad, these made a wonderful meal.
Today I'm working on our bedroom. We decided to try the bed under our window but I don't know if it'll work with the kitties wanting to be in the sill at night. I've swept and thrown away a whole bagful of garbage. Mark turned off the Cowboys game, too painful to watch. He's washing his car now and Sarah's got Dirty Jobs on.
Later we'll have more ham in some form, maybe a quiche or something. I'm not sure yet. Meanwhile, back to the room for me!
Sunday, October 19, 2008
When comrades seek sweet country haunts,