Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

Christmas in Atlanta.  Judy, me, Nell, and Santa.  This was taken about 1954, notice Judy's dog tag.  We were going to school at Mary Lin Elementary.  The next picture is of Catherine and Susie in 1976.  This was taken in Hinsdale, Illinois.  The next Christmas card is Michael and Lara, taken in 1987.               


Thursday, December 18, 2008

Turtle Soup and Fried Rabbit

No, there are no recipes, but, there are stories.  Dad loved to bring home strange food, and would find the recipes for Mom in Gourmet.  One time, there was a snapping turtle.  I don't know how Papa got the turtle, but there it was, and he wanted Mom to make turtle soup.  Dotsy remembers that the turtle hung on the clothes line to dry out; I can see Dad now, getting the older brother to help him hang the turtle on the clothes line.
  We wish we could remember more about the turtle, but one thing for certain is that we did not name it. One can never eat anything one names. Mom made the turtle soup for Dad, and that was the only time, unless it came out of a can.  I finally tried turtle soup a few years ago and it was wonderful. It was at Commander's Palace, for a rehersal dinner for cousin Janie's daughter, Elizabeth. 
Annie Mae, who worked for Mom and Dad for at least 30 years, was a wonderful Southern Cook. At least once a week, usually on a Saturday, she would fry a couple of chickens.  The chicken would be left on the stove until dinner was ready. (Dinner is at noon, Supper is always the nighttime meal).  One afternoon, Judy came home and saw the chicken on the stove and was eating a piece, or two, and loved it.  She says it was the best she ever ate.  Dad told her it was fried rabbit. From then on, she was careful to ask if it was chicken or rabbit.
Frying should be done in a well seasoned cast iron skillet, with peanut oil.  The chicken or rabbit should be served with greens, collard or turnip, and cornbread and pot likker.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Happy Birthday Mike

Happy Birthday Mike!   When Mike was born, Nannie wanted Peaches to name him after Papaw.  So, Peaches did:  Blanchard Iles Oakes, but at the last minute, put Michael in front of all the other names.  

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Ella Bella

Today,  Lara sent a picture of little Ella in a beautiful hat and scarf Ella's grandmother Elaine knitted.  I have to have the directions for the hat.  The picture also got me to thinking of how all of the grandchildren had such special memories of Peaches.  Lara told me about Peaches teaching her to climb the railing, on the house on Walton Circle, up to the mailbox.  When she was little it seemed to be so very tall, and she was so proud to be able to do it.  Peaches would encourage the children in all kinds of things. 
In the eighth grade, Lara had to bring in a recipe, and the food, for a project.  That was right up Peaches' alley.  They put together a delicious chicken cordon bleu type meal. Peaches made up the recipe, and named the dish "Chicken al la Lara". 
Mom was famous for her wonderful parties and fabulous food. One of her best recipes was for "Prune Cake".  When asked for the recipe, she always left out some crucial ingredients, and ladies could never understand why their cake was not as good as Mom's.
Next week is book club, and Peaches Prune Cake is perfect to serve for a large group.
Peaches' Prune Cake:
1 Cup chopped nuts     3 eggs 1 1/2 cup sugar 1 cup Wesson Oil 1 cup buttermilk 2 cups flour 1 teaspoon soda 1 teaspoon almond flavoring 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 teaspoon nutmeg 1 teaspoon cinnamon  1 teaspoon allspice 1/4 teaspoon salt   1 cup chopped prunes Mix together Cook at 325  for 1 hour.
  • Icing: 1 Tablespoon white Karo 1 cup sugar 1 stick oleo 1/2 cup buttermilk 1/2 teaspoon soda 1 teaspoon vanilla  Cook 7 minutes
This is exactly how Peaches gave this recipe to me in the 70's.  There may be a few who don't know what 'oleo' is, so, ask your Mothers!

Sunday, December 7, 2008


Today is Michael's birthday.  Michael was about a week old when he developed jaundice.  He was rushed to Emory and given a complete blood trasfer.  Now look at him!  Peaches wanted to name him Pearl, if, he had been a girl!  Happy Birthday Michael.  

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Judy and me 1967

  Judy had the best friends:  Amelia and Brenda.  I always wanted to tag along with them.  They were always having such fun and seemed so worldly!  Here we are when Judy was a first year teacher. She had the most fabulous car, an MGB, and, wasn't it British racing green? or Black?  it was to die for.  My sister was always one of the best teachers Walton County ever had.  She has a natural talent for teaching.
   When we were growing up, lots of times we would walk up town to the Kirkland Theatre to see a show, and Older Brother  would run ahead of us on the way home and jump out to scare us! OH! My! How it worked. I wonder what happened to Mr. Kirkland.  OB never scared him, as far as I know.
For one of the matinees, Lash LaRue was on stage.  I had an autographed 8 x 10 glossary of him for the longest time.  
I remember wanting to go to a horror show with my brothers and sisters and Mom saying that we/I would have nightmares.  Well, she was right.  I think it was about some watermelons that would split open and people would come out looking just like someone else.  Then, of course, there was the Blob.  Ah, Steve McQueen.  That was really a great horror show.

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Iles Girls

Sunny, Peaches, Dottie.  I think this photo, above, was taken at Linnie's wedding.             
This was probably taken in 1925 or there abouts.   Dottie, Sunny, Nanny, and Peaches

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Recipe and Pictures

Pictures:  Lemon Souffle Pie, Thanksgiving 1969, and Peaches about 1940.

This recipe is too good not to share.  It comes from cousin Linnie and is: 
 Sweet Potato Casserole with Praline Topping.  
  1. Casserole:  5 lbs sweet potatoes  1 stick butter, softened, 1 cup sugar 2 eggs, beaten 1 teaspoon vanilla 1/3 cup whole milk Bake and mash sweet potatoes, puree in food processor.  Mix in butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla and milk.  Pour into casserole.
  2. Praline Topping: 1/2 cup Heavy Cream 1 Cup light brown sugar 1/3 cup melted butter 1 cup chopped pecans. Bring cream to simmer in sauce pan.  Add brown sugar and stir until it dissolves.  Cook over medium heat and stir until it reaches soft boil on candy thermometer.  Remove from heat and beat in butter and pecans. Pour over sweet potatoes and bake at 350 until hot, about 35 to 40 minutes.  Serves 8.   

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Harry Arnold

Today, Mom and I drove down to Tyler to shop and go to Sam's.  Mostly Sam's.  On the way, I asked her if everyone called Harry Arnold, Sr.,  Puss or just she and Dad.  Mom said that our cousin, Judge Frank Holden, had been in WWI with Mr. Arnold, and that's what Frank called Mr. A.  What a small world.  Frank was a Federal Judge in Atlanta, and lived in the Buckhead area, I believe. It was a beautiful, beautiful neighboorhood.  Frank and his wife Grace would visit us in Monroe every so often, and Frank would line us up and say  "whose turn is it for a silver dollar".  Dad saved them for us, and I  still have one.  Papa would punch a hole in them and put a wire through the hole.  I guess he would attach our names to the wire.  We always loved to see Frank and Grace.  Frank, Jr. had a camp just north of Atlanta, and one summer, Dotsy went to camp there and mostly worked in the stables taking care of the horses.  Frank was a cousin on Dad's Mother's side,  Nona Corry Oakes . Nona was born in Siloam, GA in 1887, and died in Atlanta in 1947.  Her father was Eugene Reid Corry.
Frank was born in Crawfordville, GA, 1894, died Atlanta, in 1975.  He was married to Grace Pope of West Palm Beach, FL.  There is a small book of WWI that Frank wrote, called War Memories, published in 1922.  This book has been digitized by Google Books.  Search for War Memories by Frank A. Holden.   Frank graduated from the University of Georgia and was a member of  Phi Delta Theta.  He practiced law in Athens with his father.  Frank's father, Horace Moore Holden, was also a judge on the Federal bench in Atlanta. Frank's mother was Mary Emma Corry, half sister to Eugene Reid Corry.  Their father was William Alexander Corry.   Mary Emma's mother, William's second wife, was Mary Matilda Stephens Reid...  I was always puzzled by the relationships, but with the help of a wonderful book, Willian Corry and His Descendants by Mildred Seab Ezell, I've been able to piece this together.                                                                                                                                                                                          

Monday, December 1, 2008

Sweet Apple

All of the grandchildren loved to visit Papa at the hardware store.  I can still see Papa holding Catherine, when she was about 3, in front of the store on Broad Street.    When Papa moved out to Davis St., he planted a field of zinnias next to the store.  He painted the store a beautiful red and had a refrigerator in the back for watermelons.  Papa could frequently be found on a stool at the front of the store, reading his newspaper, with his glasses halfway down his nose.  When niece Lara was just a little girl, her Mom had dressed her in a blue and white striped outfit with an apple on it, and a worm coming out of the apple.   Lara remembers running into the store and throwing her little arms up and saying "Papa! Papa!"  He always called her 'Sweet Apple' after that.
When Papa had the store on Broad St., W.R. Weaver rented a small space in the front.  W.R. would do watch and jewelry repair, and sometimes wait on customers, when Dad needed a little extra help.  I think W.R.  was there probably for 25.  until Dad moved to Davis St..  Julius Adcock worked for Dad for forty years.    When I would go into the store to get a hammer, or nails, I would say to Julius, "put it on my account, please!" and, he would say "that NO account!"   In the fifties, everyone in town closed on Wednesday afternoons.  Saturdays  downtown were very busy.  People could hardly walk down the sidewalk.  It was only a few years after we moved to Monroe that there was a terrible fire down the street from the hardware store.   Aycock Brothers  caught on fire and burned to the ground.  At the time, it seemed like a like a huge department store, wooden floors that were oiled, men's, women's, and children's clothing, and various sundries.  Aycock rebuilt, and was a very fine place to shop.  When I was in high school, they were still charging to hem girl's jeans, but not men's.  Puss Arnold still had his barn on the block behind Broad St. until the 60's, I think.  When we were little and would walk by, we could see the animals in there.  Mrs. Arnold was a wonderful lady, and sang in the choir.  Mr. and Mrs. Arnold had a beautiful antebellum home, just off of Walton Street.