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Heirloom Recipe: Colonial Queen Cakes   1 comment

fourth generation farmgirl

I found this recipe for tea cakes in a cookbook called Southern Cakes.  It features some of the most delightful and delicious desserts associated with Southern baking:  Everything from sweet potato pound cake to red velvet cake.  Reading this cookbook and admiring the lovely photographs of beautifully baked cakes so reminded me of Grandma Rieley.  My grandma was a wonderful Southern cook, and she loved to bake.  She also appreciated a well-baked cake.  I can still hear her saying what to do or not do for a cake to turn out just right–not too dry, but perfectly moist with good texture. Watching and helping Grandma Rieley bake was one of my fondest memories.  I think she would have approved of these small, elegant tea cakes.

According to Southern Cakes, Colonial Queen Cakes were enjoyed in Virginia homes during Colonial times.  Popular long before baking soda and baking powder debuted…

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Posted April 8, 2020 by kenneturner in Information

Sometimes With Love, You Just Don’t Know Where To Start — John Prine, RIP   Leave a comment

Alabama2006-11-13-47 Lincoln House This Old Porch B-W blog“Old House” — Image by kenne

“I am an old woman named after my mother
My old man is another child that’s grown old
If dreams were lightning, thunder were desire
This old house would have burnt down a long time ago”

— from Angel from Montgomery by John Prine

I’m not unlike a lot of Prine fans, most of us have had one of his songs become
identifiable with a memorable life moment. I have a lot, so I won’t begin to list them. 

However, there is one that has become more profound because of the coronavirus.
During this time of shelter-in-place, I’m doing less hiking and a lot more walking through
the neighborhood. When I walk I shuffle through my iTunes songs, many of which
are by John Prine. One that is on my shuffle list is “Taking a Walk.” 

Taking A Walk


Taking a Walk

A man came to our house
I believe it was yesterday
I would have invited him in
But I didn’t have a lot to say

His anticipation of me opening the door
Outweighed my apprehension as it never had before
And drove my concentration
Right through that hardwood floor

Oo-oo a-ha
I’m taking a walk
I’m going outside
I’m taking a walk
I’m just getting by

There’s a girl in the white house
I don’t even know her name
Her disheveled appearance
Speaks volumes of shame

It’s an embarrassing situation
But a situation just the same
The way she walks on others
And never takes the blame
Upsets my constitution
Beyond its mortal frame

Oo-oo a-ha
I’m taking a walk
I’m going outside
I’m watching the birds
I’m just getting by

Found a card in the pocket
Of my worn out overalls
From a girl in Cedar Rapids
Now residing in Idaho Falls

I wish you could have been there
When she opened up the door
And looked me in the face
Like she never did before
I felt about as welcome
As a Wal-Mart Superstore

0o-oo – a-ha
I’m taking a walk
I’m going outside
I’m taking a walk
I don’t need a ride

I’m watching the birds
Flying so high

— John Prine

“A true national treasure and a songwriter for the ages.”

— Bruce Springsteen


Hiking In The Age Of Social Distancing   1 comment

Social Distancing Hiking-B@W-72Hiking In The Age Of Social Distancing — Image by kenne

I Am Much Too Alone in This World, Yet Not Alone

I am much too alone in this world, yet not alone
to truly consecrate the hour.
I am much too small in this world, yet not small
to be to you just object and thing,
dark and smart.
I want my free will and want it accompanying
the path which leads to action;
and want during times that beg questions,
where something is up,
to be among those in the know,
or else be alone.

I want to mirror your image to its fullest perfection,
never be blind or too old
to uphold your weighty wavering reflection.
I want to unfold.
Nowhere I wish to stay crooked, bent;
for there I would be dishonest, untrue.
I want my conscience to be
true before you;
want to describe myself like a picture I observed
for a long time, one close up,
like a new word I learned and embraced,
like the everday jug,
like my mother’s face,
like a ship that carried me along
through the deadliest storm.

Rainer Maria Rilke

2006 Abstract   1 comment

Abstract I 6-11-09 II Angel In The Vortex-2-Edit-1-Van Gough-72Angel In The Vortex — Abstract by kenne
Van Gogh Colors On The Original Abstract, 2006 

 “Life exists only at this very moment,

and in this moment it is infinite and eternal,

for the present moment is infinitely small;

before we can measure it, it has gone,

and yet it exists forever….”

— Alan Watts


Mexican Jay — Photo-Artistry   Leave a comment

Green Mountain Trail Mexican Jay-3110-72-2-Edit-artMexican Jay — Photo-Artistry by kenne


A Teacher’s Teacher: Ellis Marsalis, RIP   3 comments

Ellis Marsallis-72A Teacher’s Teacher: Ellis Marsalis (November 14, 1934, April 1, 2020) Image Source: Chicago Tribune 

All of us reach an age when it seems like every day someone of our generation dies, even more now with the COVID-19 pandemic. Sadly, on April 1, a giant in education and jazz became one of the numbers in the current pandemic. 

In the 1980s, Ellis Marsalis, with his sons, became the fresh new face to a resurgence of jazz in the last decades of the 20th century. “My dad was a giant of a musician and teacher, but an even greater father,” Branford Marsalis said in a statement. “He poured everything he had into making us the best of what we could be.”

Ellis Marsalis had a light and graceful touch at the piano, allowing his enter fellings to pour out like a gentle flowing mountain stream. He had held a weekly gig for decades at Snug Harbor, one of New Orleans’s premier jazz clubs, before giving it up in December. 

The New Times critic, wrote: “Sticking mainly to the middle register of the keyboard, the pianist offered richly harmonized arrangements in which fancy keyboard work was kept to a minimum and studious melodic invention, rather than pronounced bass patterns, determined the structures and tempos.”


One of my favorite Cole Porter songs done superbly by Ellis and his son Branford.

Cutleaf Evening Primerose   2 comments

Kickback Rock 07-30-12Cutleaf Evening Primerose (Sabino Canyon) — Image by kenne

I leave my shelter

Communicate with nature

In the bright sunlight.

— kenne

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