Archive for May, 2013

One day, while watching a Lexington, Kentucky news broadcast, I saw a commercial that really caught my eye.  It was for Springhouse Gardens which, come to find out, was a nursery in Nicholasville, a nearby town to Lexington. 

I mentioned seeing this ad to my aunt and Nanny so we decided to take a little road trip to visit and it was well worth it!  Nicholasville is about 2 hours from where we live so we started out early one morning just a couple of weeks ago.  It is so worth it to take the scenic route up Highway 68 through Lebanon, Perryville and Harrodsburg.  The view up the Kentucky River when you cross is breathtaking!  I wish there was a place to stop for photos at that location, but there really isn’t.  The huge limestone walls and forests along the banks of the flowing river is absolutely beautiful!

We arrived at the nursery after passing some manicured horse farms and we weren’t disappointed.  Since they are located in a more upscale area, the prices reflected that a bit, but they weren’t too bad.  I bought an “American Hero “ hosta and Nanny purchased something I had never seen before…a non-vining Clematis which will make a shrub instead. 

If you are looking for some specimen trees or shrubs to add to your landscape, then I highly recommend going to Springhouse Gardens.  They had things I had never seen before, including a weeping redwood that was out of this world.  I didn’t even know you could grow redwoods in Kentucky.

Would you like to see a few photographs from that day?  I thought so…I’ll be quiet now and just let you bask in the beauty of Springhouse Gardens.  Oh, one last thing…the owners were there that day and they are just delightful.  Let them know if you are from out of town and they will have you sign a guestbook.





Yes, we are in horse country.







Beautiful Japanese Maple trees:


I loved the tree they trimmed to look like a flower:



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Since I didn’t get to make any candy last Christmas, I decided that it didn’t have to be a holiday to make it.  Why not make fudge any old time of the year?  This recipe from Buns In My Oven that I found on Pinterest looked so yummy that I decided to try it. 

I usually like the classic fudges the best such as chocolate pecan and peanut butter, but I have to say that this one is right up there with them.  Of course, being chocolate-flavored helped a little! The only problem I had was that my chocolate chips wanted to melt a little in the warm mixture and Ms. Buns’ has perfect little chips in each piece.  Thankfully, it didn’t hurt the taste, just the appearance a little.


For the cookie dough:
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons half and half
1/2 cup all-purpose flour

For the fudge:
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup butter
pinch of salt
1/3 cup half and half
4-5 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips


Line an 8×8” baking dish with foil leaving a little overhang and spray with non-stick spray.

For the cookie cough: beat the butter and white sugar until they are light and fluffy which takes about 3 minutes. Add the brown sugar, vanilla, salt and half & half and combine. Stir in the flour and set aside.



Now make the fudge base:

Combine the brown sugar, butter, salt, and half and half in a medium saucepan over low-medium heat.  Warm and stir until the butter is melted and the brown sugar is dissolved. 


Remove from the heat and slowly add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time. Stir in the vanilla and then stir in the cookie dough.  Mix in the chips and spread it in the prepared baking pan. 




Chill for at least 3 hours.  It was a little humid when I made mine so it took more time to set up.  Cut into small pieces and enjoy!


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Thanks for joining me today for Book Beginnings hosted by Rose City Reader.  The book I am spotlighting is “A Clash of Kings”, the second in the series by George R.R. Martin.  To call these books “epic” is something of an understatement.  They are long and detailed with many characters with unusual names.  There are many times when I had to go back and re-read a few sentences to make sure I had all of the players straight!

“The comet’s tail spread across the dawn, a red slash that bled above the crags of Draonstone like a wound in the pink and purple sky.”

Was the comet a sign?  Is Dragonstone an important place?  You will just have to read and find out.  I hope to eventually read the rest of the series, but I may have to take a break from it for a little while.  Usually reading relaxes me and I can do it anywhere, but these books take a lot of concentration to keep up with all of the action.

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Another week has passed so it is time for another weekly menu plan.  I don’t know about you, but the days just go by faster and faster.  Just think, next Monday is Memorial Day ALREADY!!  Why do pretty days seem to last half the time dreary days do? 

Speaking of dreary days, this weekend has been a little damp for us around here with scattered showers both days so we spent most of our time indoors taking it pretty easy for a change. Hopefully we will have some nice evenings this week to get out and enjoy. 

Cheesy steak sandwiches with oven fries (2 nights)

Easy deep dish pizza casserole (new)

Shredded beef taco roast (didn’t get made a couple of weeks ago so it is still new.)

Pizza night

Cinnamon roll cake (new)

Please join me at I’m An Organizing Junkie for Menu Plan Monday.  Have a great week!

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A little while ago, C’s family hosted a baby shower for his cousin and wife who now have a precious baby boy so, of course, I offered to bring a sweet treat.  I had been wanting to make this beautiful fruit trifle from Chef In Training and this was a great opportunity.

I love fruit and dip and this is just another pretty way of having that.  I kept the types of fruit pretty close to the original, but you could use any that you like.  It is a very versatile recipe



Green grapes

Red grapes

Pineapple chunks (fresh or canned)

1 1/4 cups milk

1/2 cup sour cream

8 oz. crushed pineapple

1 3.25oz box instant banana cream pudding


Layer fruit in a large bowl or trifle dish.


Whisk the remaining ingredients together to form the topping.  Pour this mixture over the fruit and use a little leftover fruit to make a pretty design on the top.



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For today’s Thoughtful Thursday post, I would like to tell you about two garden centers in my area that I love to visit.  When my mom was living, she ran a small garden center with my aunt and grandmother and, on my days off, I would go with her to pick up wholesale flowers.  I loved these trips and enjoyed seeing all of the beautiful things offered by these businesses.  Thankfully, they also sold retail and now I return every year to purchase my flowers from them.  Please excuse the phone pics…I didn’t have my big camera with me.

Mammoth Cave Transplants is located in Edmonson County, Kentucky,  just a short distance from Brownsville.  The owners are retired school teachers who have this wonderful business right beside their home.  If you are near, please stop in and have a look around.  There are many greenhouses packed tight with blooming beauties along with trees, shrubs, garden art and vegetable seeds.









While you are there, take a second and pet the resident nursery cat, Smoke, who has been there for YEARS!


The second business is Greenleaf Nursery in Glasgow, Kentucky which is only about 30 minutes from where I live.  This was the main place we bought flowers when I was a child and I remember going here with my mom every year.  I have loved gardening from an early age and always enjoyed looking at all of the pretty plants and wanting to try them all! C & I stopped in a couple of weekends ago to pick up a hanging basket so I grabbed a few phone photos while we were there.  It was a nasty wet day but the bright cheery flowers made it worth the stop in the rain.









Greenleaf had some beautiful displays set up to give people ideas of how to decorate with their flowers.  If it had not been so rainy, I could have spend hours just wandering around looking at everything!

I hope you enjoyed this short virtual tour of two of my favorite places to shop.  If you are in the area, please stop by and support these two long standing Kentucky businesses.

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Please join me and other menu planners at I’m An Organizing Junkie for today’s edition of Menu Plan Monday.  Welcome to the start of another week and I hope my work schedule is a little calmer than last week.  We had court three days and played catch-up the other two from those court days.  All of us at the office were beat on Friday afternoon and were ready for a weekend of R and R.

C & I made it to the grocery Friday night and to Lowe’s, where we purchased 3 more Compacta holly shrubs and a dwarf Alberta spruce tree to finish up the front retaining wall landscaping.  They were planted Saturday and we also installed 4 new landscape lights in the back garage flowerbed.  Now all of we have to do is get a load of landscape rock to finish up then we can start on some new project.  I don’t think we will ever call our house done because there is always something we want to do.

I am keeping this week’s menu pretty simple because I hope we get to get outside and enjoy our evenings.  Hope everyone has a great and blessed week!  See you next time!

Bubble up pizza

Grilled pork chops with oven fries

Sausage bake with salad

Slow cooker saucilious pork chops (new)

Take out pizza night

Honey bee cake (new)

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Because of some unfortunate circumstances, I was not able to cook as many dishes at Easter that I had planned.  In fact, I just cooked one: this tasty baked ham recipe that I saw on Trisha Yearwood’s show on the Food Network.  Her show is one of my favorites because all of her dishes are fairly simple with ingredients that you will find in any grocery store.

When I saw this recipe, I knew it would be a perfect holiday main dish and it didn’t disappoint.  I love using honey in recipes especially since my father-in-law and his first cousin have hives and process their own honey.  The little bees that made this honey buzz around in my own backyard.


1 spiral sliced ham-Mine was approximately 10 pounds

1 cup honey

2 cups brown sugar

Adjust your oven racks to accommodate the ham and preheat to 350 degrees.  Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place a rack on top of that. Spray both with non-stick spray.  You will want a large baking pan with sides to catch the extra basting liquid.

Place the ham on the rack and cover the ham with foil as well.  Place it in the oven and bake for half the estimated cooking time (about 20 minutes per pound).


When you are close to the halfway mark, heat the honey and brown sugar in a medium pan until the sugar dissolves.


  Pour this over the ham and continue to cook, basting occasionally with the juices.  Allow the ham to stand for a few minutes after it is done then slice and enjoy!





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Happy Friday, everyone!  The weekend is almost here and that means it is time for another Book Beginnings post.  After you read mine, jump on over to Rose City Reader who is the gracious host of the literary link party.  There you will find a link to my post and other book loving bloggers.

Today, my beginning lines come from “A Game of Thrones” by George R.R. Martin:

“We should start back,” Gared urged as the woods began to grow dark around them. “The wildlings are dead.”

Ooh, doesn’t that sound ominous? Who are the wildlings and how did they die?  Is that who Gared was looking for or did he just happen upon them?  So many questions!

I picked up this book while my dad was in the hospital and I needed some way to pass the time.  This is not a story for the faint of heart.  It is full of action, violence, love, hate, and every other emotion you can think of.  I enjoyed it and have read the second book of the series. 

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