Long Weekend

Hey guys!

I am loving this long weekend; how about you? Every time I remembered yesterday that I had Monday off, I got ridiculously excited. Woohoo!

Saturday was an errand day. Dave and I went to Target for a few things, stocked up on mostly produce at Woodman’s, and hit up Cellcom to take a peek at smartphones. We both left with Iphones.

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I haven’t had a brand new phone in about three years (I had a used one last time I switched), so it was definitely time for an upgrade. I’m really excited about taking it on runs with me to track my pace, and the camera quality is amazing. But I still promise to never be one of those people that plays with their phone instead of talking to their friends. That’s one of my biggest pet peeves. Still, Dave and I have been playing with our phones a lot this weekend.

My mom and I have been discussing visiting my grandpa’s grave for several years now, and yesterday we finally did it. I find cemeteries incredibly fascinating. There are so many stories floating around in that plot of land, so much love and pain and anger and heartbreak and memories. I love to look at the gravestones and guess what kind of life the person had.

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I never met my Grandpa Bain, and being the family-oriented person I am, I miss him sometimes. I wish he would have been part of my life.

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My uncle is right next to him. He died when I was only three and, based on all the stories I’ve heard about him, I’m sure he would have been one of my favorite uncles.

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We spent quite a while walking through the entire cemetery. I was very excited to see a lilac bush, because they are one of my favorite flowers. I remember when I was sick once as a child, and my mom put lilacs in a vase next to my bed. I alternated reading and smelling the lilacs until I felt better.

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When we returned back to our apartment, Dave and I made good on a promise we had made to our Dad last July: to cook him a Low Country Boil.

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This is only the second time we’ve made Low Country Boil, but it is such a wonderful meal. I use Alton Brown’s seasoning recipe which is a little long but so, so good. It is the perfect amount of spice.

Low Country Boil (serves 10-12)

  • 4 lbs small red potatoes
  • 10 quarts water (last time I listed five, but based on the size of our pot, I have to use ten)
  • 2 lbs andouille sausage, cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks
  • 6 ears of corn, cut into thirds (we cut them in half last time, but I think I prefer the size of thirds)
  • 4 lbs of shrimp, uncooked, peeled, and deveined
  • seasoning (see below)

Add potatoes to large pot, then add 10 quarts of water and seasoning. Cover pot and heat to a rolling boil; cook 5 minutes. Add sausage and corn, and return to a boil. Cook 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Add shrimp to stockpot; cook 3 to 4 minutes or until shrimp turn pink. Drain

Low Country Boil Seasoning

  • 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon whole coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons whole cloves
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons whole allspice
  • 1 lb kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1 tablespoon dried dill weed
  • bay leaves, crumbled

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I think I ran out of most of my spices making this, but it was worth it. Before we put the Low Country Boil on the grill, Dave made some amazing corn fritters. I made cornbread to go with the boil last time, but these were way better.

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I had a few beers while we cooked, including this Alaska Summer beer, which I really enjoyed.

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Only a few members of my family showed up, but we still had a good time.

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Our apartment isn’t the greatest for cookouts, but we make do with what we have. There wasn’t a whole lot of activity in our complex last night, so I suspect most people went up north for the weekend.

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The chefs!

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One of the chefs who taught me!

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Probably the best one pot meal I’ve ever had. I added some cocktail sauce to my plate and dipped everything into it. Dave’s corn fritters went wonderfully with the meal. And even though I was full, I had to have a piece of angel food cake that I had sliced and thrown on the grill for a few minutes.

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With some whipped cream, strawberries, and blueberries on top, it was awesome. I highly recommend grilling angel food cake.

I’m looking forward to another relaxing day, but I’ll leave you with a picture of my niece Aurelia.

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