Sunday, February 28, 2010


Well a worn out welcome to the last day of the month to you! How are you doing today? Me… well I’m tired really… very sore and tired but let me tell you I had one of the best times yesterday! I always have a good time when I am with my parents. I gotta say my mom is my best girl friend (above only my daughter!)… as long as we don’t live together LOL! I finally told my daughter why I haven’t been feeling real well and then I broke down and cried in her hug. I feel like I let her down. She says not but I did scare her… understandable. I promised her I wouldn’t ever do that again. And for this family… the “P” word is a BIG deal… you do NOT say it unless you will keep it!

Ok, so I told you yesterday that my parents and I were going to the BIG Farmer’s Market in Houston right? Granted my parents have been to that one, but I never have so it was very exciting! (Oh and BTW Thank you Hazel for the sweet comment. I try to make all my outings fun… not just shopping. But we did have a blast and its something I wish all my followers and friends could do! I would love to meet some of you guys and gals one day! That would be awesome!) It was definitely an adventure let me tell you… I floated all day! I know… you are thinking that I am a super weirdo for being made happy by fresh produce, but when you love cooking like I do, well what can I say LOL!

Here I am outside the front entrance to the biggest Farmer’s Market I have ever been to! OMG it was huge… my mom made joked about the size of my eyeballs when we first walked in and she was right LOL! I was in heaven! Oh the things I could do with all that produce!

Here I am again LOL (Everyone is lucky… I normally HATE pics of myself taken, but I wanted you all to see my adventures LOL). This time you see me picking out this HUGE 10-15 yellow onion! It was at least 1 pound by itself I swear… bigger than a softball if you can imagine it! I mean look at it in my hand! I have HUGE hands LMAO!

This is my Dad… everyone say HI Dad! LOL… I took this picture right before we had the coolest experience! Ok, so I was talking to Dad and explaining about the yummy Chili Rellenos with the HUGE poblano peppers (while I am grabbing them LOL). Ok so this older lady is standing next to me and I thought I was in her way… so did my dad LOL. We went to move and I apologized for being in her way and she was like “Oh no dear I’m listening to you!” I was like OH Ok lol and kept with my “cooking lesson” LOL. Before I know it I had a group of people standing around listening! I got 15 minutes of fame. I was important and people were truly interested in what I was saying! Oh it was the coolest feeling! I wore a huge grin and swore I was floating on air the rest of the day LOL. My parents just laughed!

This is my mom… the mastermind behind MY mastermind (cooking, sewing, you name it! This lovely wonderful lady taught me everything I know!). In this picture, she was browsing some of the wonderful produce from the individual sellers booths. We found some HUGE and very yummy produce from the individuals for great prices. Softball size avocados, 18 in. tall pineapples, you name it. I even found a plant (I can’t remember what it was called) but it was like Spanish Broccoli. It was interesting and if I could remember what it was called, I could research it and maybe try it the next time I go! But look at all the beautiful food around my mom!

Here is my Dad and I outside the Spice Market. OMG this place is like the super duper spice house! Outside you can find ceramics and such. It’s on the corner of the road- across from the farmers produce area and next door to the fresh bakery! I think my map says that you can find this building at the intersection of OMG and WOW!LOL!

And here I am (acting goofy LOL) in spice heaven! OMG there was nothing but walls and walls of spices! Anything you can possibly imagine! Things you can find everywhere and things you can’t hardly find at all… like my SMOKED paprika! OMG and my chili fruit powder! YUMMYYYY!! So I got a scoop of each! Trust me I could have got more, but I was practicing restraint! LOL… This could easily be a C-note shop… oh yea baby! So many new meals could come out of this little corner of heaven!

This is the pretty load I ended up with. The potatoes were bigger than my hand, huge onions, tall pineapples, the monster head of cabbage I got for around $1.30 (it was a 4 pd. Cabbage!), the huge zucchinis, you name it! Oh my brain was going 90 to nothing walking around this gold mine of greenery! As I walked through the aisles, I was getting new ideas of things to try!

After our day at the city blocks full of food, we set off on the adventure to find 2 of these salvage grocery stores. Well we found the first one in a very unattractive area of town, so we decided to go to the other one on our side of town. OK… found it, so let’s look. Inside was a migraine producing mess of mainly expired stuff! They had a few things of soon to expire, but for the most part I was so not impressed. I bought a few things, but not many… and we left. I won’t be recommending or visiting those 2 locations anymore! My mother-in-law tells my husband that the one up by her is an absolute awesome place… but I am not going all that way for a few groceries that I can find locally.

After the Salvage Grocer, we headed back towards our area of town. We stopped for lunch at Red Lobster and had a lot more laughs and fun. We also had a great meal as well. I thought my Dad was going to pass tea and clam chowder through his nose at one point LOL. I had him laughing about I couldn’t take home food because it was evidence LMAO. He said the “smell of shrimp and crab might give me away” LOL So I said no it won’t… watch this! I squeezed the lemon over my hands and began rubbing them together LOL! Then he started giggling so I said LOOK perfume! And I rubbed the lemon slice behind my ears and on my wrists LMAO! Both my parents were laughing so I was happy. They laughed a lot yesterday and that was the best part. They deserve that… to have fun and be happy!

Alright ladies and gents, its time for The Bucket List! As you know, the last few days I have been working on my list of “life goals” ever since my mom showed me the March issue of Texas Monthly. I told ya’ll that I would make a list of 100 things (cause I would like to think I still have quite a while to fill it LOL!) I want to do before I kick the bucket. At first, the ideas came easy… I thought I would finish it in no time flat right? NOPE… Six hours after I had started it, I was only on #50 and it stayed there until Saturday! WOW… it also made me realize what a boring person I have been… and so much of a hermit! LOL Then I looked at the list I had made so far and said… OMG I like some weird stuff! LOL. But the weird and unusual normally makes for extraordinary memories! And that’s what I want ya know? When I was diagnosed with Cancer and the doctor I had at the time said some rather “harsh” things to me, I remember going out for a walk just to clear my head. At that moment I actually noticed that the world had color! I mean how blue the sky was, green of the grass, and even the rainbow of colors in the trash on the side of the road! Somehow, since being in remission, I have lost those colors again and perhaps this bucket list is what I needed to help bring them back! As, Phil Keoghan, the host of the television show, “The Amazing Race,” said, ditch the excuses...seize the opportunity... to live life now! With no more shoulda, coulda, or woulda… so that’s what I am gonna do… TRY to live each day like it’s my last… or at minimum, like the day of my diagnosis. But I think I’m gonna stick with 50 right now and when I cross something off, I will add another… If you have ideas, by all means let me know. I know some will say “What about skydiving or swimming with dolphins, etc.) but ya know this evaluation of myself has made me realize I’m not really into those kinds of things. But I WILL listen to all your ideas! So without further ado… here is Renee’s Bucket List (Not necessarily done in this order! LOL)!

1. Sip a Dublin Dr. Pepper at the factory in Dublin.
2. Take in the River Walk at Christmas in San Antonio.
3. See the Marfa Lights.
4. See the King of Rock and Roll in Los Fresnos.
5. Spray Paint a Car at Cadillac Ranch near Amarillo.
6. Eat a Chicken Fried Steak at Mary’s Café in Strawn, TX.
7. Visit the LadyBird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin.
8. Enter a Chili Cookoff.
9. Visit Graceland in Memphis, TN.
10. Visit the World’s Largest Wooden Nickel in San Antonio.
11. Visit the World’s Largest Cowboy Boots in San Antonio.
12. Visit the Milk Bottle Building in Corpus Christi.
13. Visit the Tee Pee Courts in Wharton, TX.
14. Visit sites in San Antonio- the Alamo, Seaworld, Ripley’s, etc.
15. Visit the World’s Largest Fire Hydrant in Beaumont.
16. Take the kids to Disneyland or Disney World.
17. Visit Ground Zero to properly pay my respects.
18. Mescalero Apache Indian Reservation in Mescalero, NM.
19. Shop a Farmer’s market in France.
20. Visit at least 1 city/town in each one of the 50 States.
21. Write and publish a book.
22. Own stocks in a Fortune 500 company to leave to my children.
23. Own or build a restaurant.
24. Visit the World’s Largest Oatmeal box in Oatmeal, TX.
25. Experience Mardi Gras in New Orleans, LA
26. Meet Paula Deen and Emeril Lagasse.
27. Help build a Habitat for Humanity Home.
28. Live a 75% Green life (If not more)!
29. Visit the Titanic Wreckage aboard a submarine.
30. Buy at least 1 thing on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.
31. Go on a wildlife photography safari.
32. Attend the Culinary Institute of America in New York.
33. Visit the Great Pyramids of Egypt.
34. Visit the World’s Largest Saxophone in Houston, TX.
35. Ghost Hunt on the U.S.S. Lexington in Corpus Christi.
36. Go to a Broadway stage show in New York.
37. Visit the Beer Can House in Houston, TX.
38. Spend a weekend on Bourbon Street/French Quarter in LA.
39. Design/Build and live on a farm/ranch- complete with animals.
40. Visit the Little Eiffel Tower in Paris, TX.
41. Visit the 7 Wonders of the World.
42. Take a picture in front of the Big Strawberry in Poteet, TX.
43. Eat and attend a show at Medieval Times.
44. Go to see “Old Sparky” at the Texas Prison Museum.
45. Visit the World’s Largest Rattlesnake in Freer, TX.
46. Shop a Farmer’s market in Italy.
47. Plant a Pecan Tree.
48. Visit Las Vegas at night.
49. Conquer my fear of heights.
50. Break a World Record.

Okie dokie… now how cool is that! I have a bucket list LMAO! Ok, now for some delicious food… I was chuckling quietly on how my mother was so loving her meal she bought and dad was loving the flavor too. Red Lobster recently added Wood-Fire Grills to all restaurants nationwide. In addition, Red Lobster added several new menu items - including Peach Bourbon BBQ Shrimp & Bacon Wrapped Scallops. And that is what my mom had for lunch. The meal consists of skewered, wood-grilled jumbo shrimp and bacon-wrapped sea scallops with a sweet peach-bourbon BBQ sauce, over crispy onion rings. So guess what… Just for you mom! I found the recipe for my mother’s lunch INCLUDING the sauce! I know my mother enjoyed and I hope you do to! (This recipe was provided by Michael LaDuke who is the Senior Executive Chef at Red Lobster and is responsible for leading the culinary team in the creation of fresh, delicious seafood for their menu.)

Peach Bourbon BBQ Shrimp & Bacon Wrapped Scallops


24 each 26-30 count peeled shrimp
24 each scallops
4 each Bamboo skewers (soaked in water for 10 - 15 minutes) for shrimp
4 each two-prong metal skewer for scallops
Olive Oil
24 each Bacon
Salt and pepper to taste

Peach Bourbon BBQ Sauce

2 cups of your favorite BBQ sauce
¼ cup ripe fresh or frozen peaches (peeled, seeded and chopped), or substitute peach preserves
2 ½ Tbsp Bourbon


1. Place shrimp next to each other on a bamboo skewer, leaving room on either end. Make sure to cover the end of the skewer with foil so it doesn't burn.

2. Wrap one piece of bacon around each scallop and place scallops on a two-pronged skewer so they don't turn.

3. Brush both sides of the shrimp and scallops with olive oil and season with salt and pepper

4. Place the shrimp and scallops on a medium hot grill. Keep an eye on them because they will cook quickly and you don't want to burn them.

5. Grill shrimp and scallops for approximately 2-3 minutes per side. Take them off the grill when they are about 80 percent done.

6. Add the Peach Bourbon BBQ sauce during the last moments of cooking or when the cooking is complete for added flavor.

Peach Bourbon BBQ Sauce Instructions

1. Combine all ingredients in a small sauce pan.
2. Bring to a simmer while stirring for 8-10 minutes, allowing the alcohol to cook down.
3. Cool and blend in a food processor or blender until smooth.

Well, we’re to that part again where I tell you how I’m gonna get off here and go do something LOL but ya know… I’m not planning to do anything today LMAO! I’m am gonna be lazy and MAYBE piddle if I want to LMAO. If I get absolutely nothing accomplished, its not gonna bother me one bit LOL! I’ve been through and done a lot the last few days and this last day of the month I am gonna rest… just rest! If I want to nap at 3pm, then by golly I am gonna nap at 3pm! LMAO… So best wishes in whatever you set out to do today and I will see you again tomorrow! HUGS!!


  1. HI DAD LOL ,yes you look just like your father .
    Wow it looks like you had a great time and look at that produce .How nice to spend a fun filled day with your parents .
    I'm Canadian but I love crossing the border to USA at least once a month ,do you have a Aldi grocery store near you ,I can go over there and buy butter for 1.30 here in Canada its 2.99 and thats on sale ,normal price is at least 4.00 .
    Have a relaxing day , for myself I'm waiting for the Olympic mens hockey to come on ,in the mean time I'll do some hand quilting .Enjoy your day .

  2. yes, you do look like your dad! looks like a nice day.
    congratulations ,Hazel.... Canada just won.. even tho I am an American... I kinda wanted Canada to win as Hockey is so big up there..... so I got my wish.. great game.
    still sick here.... bummer