A little bit about Robin

I was born in raised in Alabama and am proud of my Southern roots. I love to write and share life experiences, thoughts, and crafty ideas about interesting things past and present. Welcome to my neck of the woods. Sit down and swing a while.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Politics: My Up Close But Not Too Personal

I tend to keep my beliefs close to my heart. Most of the time I stand by the etiquette that one should never talk about religion, politics or money in mixed company. I am always fearful I will offend someone or be wrongly judged. At the same time I am working on not judging others.

Most recently, during this political year, I have zipped my lip at work, social functions and resisted the urge to post my political opinion on my Facebook page. I guess I feel that if I share my viewpoint with the world I would in some way be pressing my beliefs on others. I still struggle with candidness in regards to politics. I would never survive on The VIEW.

Over the years I have grown into my beliefs and feel that my political decisions made in the past were true representations of my lifestyle at the time. I have voted Democrat and Republican. I have been a feminist, a conservative, a liberal and independent. I stand by a principle that sometimes our country moves too far to the right, and sometimes too far to the left. Somewhere in the middle is where I stand, and I vote accordingly.

My political rant is usually saved for my husband and extended family. I know they will offer reassurance if they agree with my opinion, and an enlightened debate if they do not. This blog is probably the closest I will ever get to publicly stating my political outlook. I think both candidates do have our best interests in mind. I also think my choice for President is the best choice for me.

I hear intolerable comments all the time in regards to our presidential candidates and political parties. Some are laughable, some just plain ignorant. Like Anne Frank I truly believe that despite everything, people are really good at heart. Beyond the debates, Sarah Palin’s wardrobe, Main Street, health care, tax cuts, Joe the Plumber and the CEO… the winner of this election is what we get. Like it or not.

The message I want to put out there before November 4th is: Be more open minded while remaining true to your self. Make educated decisions. We as individual Americans should be personally accountable for our own actions on both sides of the ticket. If who ever comes out on top is not your choice, try and find the good in him. Say a little prayer for him. He is going to need it.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Out Of The Loop

I've been out of the Loop. This gal has been trying to make it through the last two months of school. The kids have gone hog wild.

Lots of great news has come my way in March. I have a friend in Atlanta (Meredith) expecting. Two of my friends got engaged around St. Patty's Day (Avie and Manders). My Brother and Sister-In-Law welcomed their second little girl, Molly Elizabeth May. My mom and I went for a visit to San Fran to meet Molly and hang with her big sis, Piper Quinn.

Life is busy. Check out what has been up, down and all around for the May/Seale family.

The Birmingham Botanical GardensStarts Blooming!
The daffodils are my favorite! Michael and I made a visit in March.

Baby Molly Comes Out Smiling.
Here she is 9 days old. Molly's Blog

Aunt Robin learns table etiquette from Piper.

Mom and I finally made it to the San Francisco Ballet! They did Tribute to Jerome Robbins Mixed Repertory. The SF Ballet performs at theWar Memorial Opera House, an amazing building. The red dress opera scene from Pretty Woman was sceduled to film there, but they had to pick another location due to renovations from the 1989 Earthquake.

David Seale, Micahel's oldest brother started playing at Cafe Ciaoin English Village. We go there to listen when he plays, and eat fried green tomatoes. Their FGT's are not the best in town, but quit tasty I must say!

Cinco De Marriage round 2008.

Avie accepts a proposal from Thorn Himmel at theHorseradish Grill.Let the games begin. These two won't be walking down the isle during the SEC football season. Summer09 is their GOAL post. This photo is Avie at my bachlorette party last September...foreshadowing of what was to come???

Meanwhile back in the Windy City, Sean Patrick Brady pops down on one knee over green beer. Her ring is magically delicious! In this pic you see Manders and I at my wedding. Checkout their wedding page Mandye and Sean 2008. Congrats to both the lucky brides!!!

That raps it up for March. More to come in April.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

When I Am Famous and They Make a Movie About Me....

…I want Ann Hathaway to play me. It used to be Sandra Bullock, but now I kind of dig Ann. She is classy, has style and seems down to earth. I like to think I embody those qualities. She played Jane Austen. I love Jane Austen. Works for me. She might need to practice her Southern accent a bit, but I think she could pull it off.

Oh come on!!!! Think I am crazy? We all have thought about our perfect star double at some point. I even have present day stars picked out for some of my friends when they get famous. Yes, this is what I do when I can’t sleep at night.

Sarah, KIRSTEN DUNST. Redheads. Smart and cool, calm, collected but with an edge.

Susie Swanson–KATE HUDSON. Young, beautiful, can pull off Channel in flip flops...green cutting eyes.

Manders-SANDRA DEE. Had to use a blast from the past, they don't make'um like Manders anymore. Classy and bubbly.

Avie- RACHEL RAY. If there was a movie based on Avie's life, it would air on the Food Network. EVO anyone?

Alison-KELLY RIPA. This woman knows what she wants!!

Meredith-BRIDGETTE MOYNAHAN. Hey, Bridgette hooked up with Tom Brady. Who can complain?

Kristin-KEIRA KNIGHTLEY. Both are tall, thin and mysterious.

I have so many star worthy friends, I could go on for pages. This blog might have to be continued until the next time I can't sleep...

Later, my peeps.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Village Finds

Where we live in Mountain Brook there are three little Villages all within a mile of each other. Mountain Brook Village, Crestline Village and English Village.

On the weekends I work at a really nice baby store located in Crestline Village, Once Upon a Time. The clothes there for baby are to die for and the linens so VERY nice. I love working there becasue everyone who shops is so upbeat and positive. The pregnant women are so cute and fun to help out. I can't wait until I am one of those women, all plump and jolly. One day.

Once Upon a Time also does monogramming and I take full advantage of the service!!! For a wedding gift I got some really nice chocolate brown towells. I never got the matching set, and when I went back to Dillards to close out my registry, they were all sold out. I did not see the use in returning the towells because we always need extra. I decided to have monogramming done on the one set I do have, and use them for guest towels. I chose an ivory thread. I have the white matching set my mom bought me recently waiting for me in Huntsville. When I pick those up I plan on using the same ivory thread so the mongram looks muted and more subtle. I realy like the way the "S" for "Seale" turned out.

Here are the towells:

The sweet angel candle in the picture is from one of my favorite stores in Mountain Brook Village, Amano. I got the candle on sale right after Christmas. I think angels are appropriate all year, not just Christmas time. We always need an angel on our shoulder guiding us in the right direction.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Work Out Tunes

This time of year is always tough for me. Still Winter, not quit Spring yet. Some days I need a little pick me up. Exercise always does the trick. I have a WORKOUT file on my ipod. I change it up a couple times a month. Using songs that inspire me to get off the couch is key. If I am not walking down Euclid Avenue in my neighborhood, you can find me at the JCC (Levit Jewish Community Center http://www.bhamjcc.org/).

The JCC is the BOMB. I love to swim laps there in the summer.

We are lucky to be so close to the J.

WORKOUT Songs this week are:

Warm Up:
Ireplaceable, Beyonce
Baba O'Riley, The Who

Work out:
All these Things I've Done, The Killers
Under Pressure, Queen and David Bowe
Sexyback, Justin Timberlake
Gimme More, Britney Spears
No One, Alicia Keys

Cool Down:

Friday, February 1, 2008

When I Was in Sixth Grade

In this picture I am in sixth grade with my mom, the teacher. These days I am a teacher. I work every day at Mountain Brook Elementary School as their permanent substitute. I never know who I am going to be or what grade I am teaching half the time. I play math teacher, librarian, art teacher, music teacher, mother for a day and hall monitor just to name a few. Most of all I strive to be a friend to all the wonderful children in my school, especially the 6th graders.

Today I was in 6th grade math and I noticed the teacher had a passage about her life in sixth grade posted on her board. I thought it was neat that she was letting the children see the world through her eyes when she was their age. What a bright way to connect with your students. It inspired me to write about my sixth grade memories. The world according to a twelve year old 20 years later…

When I Was in Sixth Grade
By: Mrs. Seale

When I was in sixth grade I had braces. My mom finally let me get bangs.
My best friends(depending on what day it was) were Mandy Morgan, Alison Hopper then Lauren Doyle and Sarah Merritt.
My brother was a sophomore in College.
I had a crush on Robby Rowan.
My favorite book was Sweet Valley High.

My favorite thing was my RED Liz Claiborne purse.
My favorite subject was reading. Favorite Teacher, Mrs. Battle the English teacher. Mrs. Battle's husband was a judge. I was a pre-teen model.

My reading teacher had us read one chapter from "To Kill a Mocking Bird". The chapter in which Atticus kills the wild dog.
In Library the next week I checked out “To Kill a Mocking Bird” and wrote, “Robby Rowan is fine" on the back cover. In 8th Grade I coincidentally checked out the same copy and forgot to return it before 8th grade graduation. I have it on my bookshelf today. Somebody who had the book before me wrote the word “How” in pen above the title.

In 6th grade I took ballet and celebrated my 6th year in the Nutcracker dancing in the role of a MOUSE.
I was a swimmer and the last leg swimming freestyle on the Piedmont Pool 11-12 girls medley relay. I was the fastest freestyle swimmer in my age group that summer.

In 6th grade I cried for two days because I did not make cheerleading, but two of my best friends did.

My favorite TV shows were Punky Brewster and Family Ties.
Favorite Song, Livin on a Prayer by Bon-Jovi.
My favorite game was spotlight; all the neighborhood friends played it.
My favorite place to eat was Mr. Gatti's Pizza.
My friends and I loved to ride our bikes to Dairy Queen and the Mall (both a mile from my house).

When I was in 6th grade my Dad went to London with the Navy for two weeks and brought back the CD Broadway Soundtrack Les Miserables. I listened to it just about every day until I was 16. I have the poster he also brought home framed in my living room today.

On the last day of school in 6th grade my dad picked me up and a six-week-old Siberian Husky was sitting in the passengers seat. He had one blue eye and one brown eye. Alison Hopper named him Mojo.

I loved sixth grade and I love my sixth graders today.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Throw It All In The Pot Chili

After the big snow Saturday, Michael and I thought it would be a great idea to make chili and cornbread. I used to have a great fiesta style chili recipe...but lost it. When we went to the Publix to get the ingredients, I just made the recipe up in my head and added things to the cart that looked like they might be good in our chili.

1 pound turkey meat(we always keep turkey meat in our frig. It is low fat and really good)
1 can black beans
1 can white beans kidney beans (or red if you prefer)
1 can diced tomatoes
1/4-cup salsa(I like medium, but HOT is great for that extra kick)
1 green pepper-chopped
1 red pepper-chopped
1 orange or yellow pepper-chopped
1/4 cup red onion
2 tbs flour(I l like wheat flower)
Sour Cream(fat free if your watching your weight)
Shredded Cheese(fat free option as well)
Texas Peat’s hot sauce
Chili powder

Place meat in mixing bowl and knead it with 2 tbs of flour. The flour keeps the meat from separating too much and makes the chili thick and less watery. Brown meat, sauté peppers and onions. Put peppers and onions on pot with meat. Stir a while and then throw everything else in. Season to taste with salt, pepper chili powder and hot sauce. Let simmer for 45 minutes. Garnish with sour cream and cheese. YUM!

Corn Bread is simple, just look at the back of the package on the cornmeal for directions. BUT, I like to add two teaspoons or sugar or Splenda for that sweet southern taste. If you really want your bread sweet, replace a 1/2 a cup of corn meal with white cake mix. Your muffins will be so fluffy and really GOOD!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Snow Day 2008

Today it snowed in Birmingham. We have not seen snow here in some time. It was beautiful!!! Michael and I went outside and enjoyed all two hours of the snow, until it melted. Folks were out and about with their dogs in our neigborhood! Snow just makes me happy. We went inside after a while and made turkey chili and corn bread. What a great way to spend a Saturday in January!

Michael enjoys the snow

Foxhall, our condo units, looks so pretty in the snow


Wilbur does not understand

Friday, January 11, 2008

Whole Wheat Banana Bread

My sister-in-law, Beth, has a mother named Mary. We all love Mary, she is swell. When the May family visits San Fran for Thanksgiving, Mary makes knots rolls. I love her knot rolls. The recipe came from Sunset Magazine. Sunset is the Western version of Southern Living. The magazine has been around for over 50 years and fantastic to look at. The recipes within are true to the region and a great contrast to the tasty Southern foods we are so accustom to here in the South. Check out the website here http://www.sunset.com/sunset/.

Mary knows how much I adore helping her make the knot rolls. One day she was in a used bookstore out in Cali and thumbed across an old Sunset Cook Book of Breads, published in 1973. In the index she found the recipe for her knot rolls and sent me the book! What a kind gesture.

I was flipping through the cookbook the other night and came across a recipe for Whole Wheat Banana Bread. If you have ever made banana bread, you know your bananas have to past ripe (bruised) so they mush better. In my kitchen there just so happened to be three neglected bananas living in my fruit basket. I could not resist! I sent Michael to the store to get me some whole-wheat flower. He likes to run errands for me, or at least pretends to like it. While he was out I set out all my other ingredients. The end result is below with recipe. If you have a chance to make it, ENJOY with a square of butter a big tall glass of milk!

See Below…

1/2-cup butter or margarine
1-cup sugar
2 eggs slightly beaten
3 medium size bananas (1 cup mashed)
1 cup regular all purpose flour
1/2-teaspoon salt
1-teaspoon soda
1-cup whole-wheat flower
1/3-cup hot water
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Melt butter and blend in sugar. Mix in beaten eggs and mashed bananas. Blend until smooth. Sift all-purpose flour with salt and soda. Stir in whole-wheat flour. Add dry ingredients alternately with hot water. Stir in chopped nutmeats. Turn into a greased 9x5 inch loaf pan. Bake in a moderately slow oven 325 degrees for one hour and 10 minutes.