Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, crab apple jelly, and red Georgia clay

Photo on wall in Georgia

Photo on wall in Georgia

New Year’s Day, 2014.

I eat toast slathered with translucent red crab apple jelly that glistens like a stained glass window through its home in a tiny mason jar.  It’s a Christmas gift from a daughter who found it in upstate New York and mailed it four states away because the red jelly gleamed so beautifully in the sunlight.

Will the sun shine here today or will the cold North Wind lock it away behind a cell of bitter gray clouds?  It’s been cold for days and days and weeks and weeks and soon we’ll whisper “months and months” as our lips slowly turn blue and our feet freeze in our heavy winter boots.

New Year's love

New Year’s love

OK, OK, I exaggerate, but only because one week ago we luxuriated in 55 (12 C) mid-afternoon temperatures on the red clay soil of Georgia.  We fished out lawn chairs from the garage at Barry’s parents’ house and turned our faces toward the sun and remembered the joys of Vitamin D and uplifted sun-kissed spirits.

We counted fifty robins, escapees from the North Wind, who all flew to the Drue backyard and celebrated Christmas in relative warmth.  We delighted in the brightest of chippy blue birds who sang of New Year and hope and possibility.  We admired gray squirrels, and flickers, and a pileated woodpecker who clinked  his beak against a southern yellow pine and dined on burrowed insects for his holiday dinner.

In which I take a "selfie" since I know what this word means now.

In which I take a “selfie” since I know what this word means now.

We did not see–but heard tales–of a full-antlered buck who guarded lady-does in the backyard as they rested, pregnant, on that deep red Georgia soil, which is not the same color of red as the crab apple jelly which gleams up from my toast.

I roasted chestnuts in our wood stove on Monday, oh yes, the day after our plane landed back in Hancock on an icy runway with wind blowing sideways and the thermometer grinning evilly at 2 (-16 C) degrees.  Have you ever roasted chestnuts in an open fire, as the holiday song croons?  I have never, and so bought the sack of hard-shelled brown chestnuts at the Keweenaw Co-op, and among teasing, scored them, wrapped them in aluminum foil, and awaited their pop-pop-pop as the shells loosened their grip upon the inner yellow smoky core.

Brown chestnuts with shells, peeled chestnuts, shells

Brown chestnuts with shells, peeled chestnuts, shells

Of course, I did not hear pop-pop-pop because the wood stove motor hummed too loudly, but some time later retrieved the chestnuts and shelled them while injuring two fingernails.

Musing:  if the wood stove is closed, can one insist they roasted chestnuts on an open fire?  Perhaps it would be more accurate to say the chestnuts roasted in a fire.  Period.

Minced roasted chestnuts into teeny tiny pieces and added to brown rice laced with salt and we ate a soothing Monday-night dinner (with fresh green salad) attempting to balance the last three weeks of celebratory merry-making with some simple fare.

It proved much work, this chestnut roasting.  Perhaps it’s traditionally accomplished during the holidays with family members around to participate together in the shelling and tattered fingernail fun.

A santa and snowman stole a peeled and unpeeled chestnut and merrily ran off with them.

A Santa and snowman stole a peeled and unpeeled chestnut and merrily ran off with them.

Whilst in Georgia, our daughter-in-law, Seunghye, (and her sous-chef, our son, Chris) created the most delicious Korean dinner for the crew to sample.  I shall show you a family photo.  (Barry, too, will print this family photo is his newspaper column this week about our traveling adventures. The adventures involved dire weather-related forecasts which attempted to thwart every step of our plane flights, but never succeeded.)

Family enjoys a wonderful Korean dinner created by our daughter-in-law in Georgia

Family enjoys a wonderful Korean dinner created by our daughter-in-law in Georgia

As for resolutions, my only resolution (she said, resolutely) is to not make resolutions.  I want to celebrate the wild creativity of life itself!  To open this heart in compassion to whatever presents itself.  To not close down in fear or nervousness or sadness.

OK, those sounded suspiciously like resolutions.  Let’s back up and try it again.  I want to celebrate the wild creativity of life itself!  Whether it comes in the red of crab apple jelly, a Korean feast, freezing cold, the red of red Georgia clay,  icy runways or chestnuts roasting in an open fire.

Happy New Year to you! What are your new year thoughts, resolutions or stories?

Christmas cactus blooms yet again

Christmas cactus blooms yet again

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
This entry was posted in January 2014 and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

85 Responses to Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, crab apple jelly, and red Georgia clay

  1. Beautifully written! I love those red clay hills of GA! The feast looks wonderful and the company all happy and bright.
    (The comment box was located hiding in plain sight :). ..) only because you had asked.

    Happy New Year….and no, I never roasted chestnuts and there are no New Years resolution.

    • Kathy says:

      Linda, just imagine all the things that are hiding in plain sight that we can’t even see! Thank you for reading and enjoying the writing. Wishing you all the best in 2014 and beyond.

  2. Elisa says:

    i am cackling merrily at the snowman and santa with the nuts!! They excite me!! I clapped, sitting here in my chair. I suppose I’m not to share such undignified and immediate reactions. Ha! E got to go to NYC and ate at a Korean and then a Thai restaurant. The man at one remembers all of the family’s orders and then, adds in, telling them what they will eat, (uhm and often HOW they will eat it, sometimes it is snatched away stirred and handed back–“Now, you eat.”

    I still like my, perhaps, romantical views on things, however, E said that I would probably hate NYC, because there is NOTHING living, piles of cups on corners cause people just throw them down, dirty dirty sewage and buildings so high there is no sky. I cannot imagine such a Hell!! And to think that all of these years, I thought there was something defective about me that I hadn’t been able to go. (I am still hanging onto the miracle of visiting the library and MOMA and so on, as portrayed in Rosemary’s Blog.) Maybe a day trip some time.

    I generally do not resolve, though people probably think I do, once I decide I can stamp my foot loudly in proclamation! I think that I will continue to explore ideas and expectations, dreams and realities, the merge of desire and fullfillment. Until I’m done, anyway! I think I would like that jelly just so that I could see through it.

    • Kathy says:

      I am smiling ear-to-ear that you delight so much in those little ole Santas and Snowmen, Elisa! It’s interesting what E said about NYC. I saw what she saw, too. Dirt and garbage and fear lurking around corners. But I also saw Life crackling in multi-colored scarves, dancing in Central Park, and peeking out between buildings. A family of raccoons climbed a fire escape and winked inside. I had to look differently to see Presence showing its creative self in the midst of the city filled with library books and whizzing subways and…well, I shall quit typing now. May we continue to explore ideas and expectations and everything else you said! And may you find some translucent red crab apple jelly to spread on your toast. Amen.

  3. ” I want to celebrate the wild creativity of life itself!” Amen siSTAR!

    (Kathy, I started reading this post without my glasses. As I was reading about your toast slathered in “translucent red crab apple jelly,” I saw the next picture and thought, “OMG! Her toast is in the shape of an angel!”

    • Kathy says:

      Ha ha ha ha, Laurie! Your awareness without glasses conjured up an angel among that red crab apple jelly. I love creativity! You never know how and where it shall birth next…

  4. Happy New Year to you, Kathy! I love lists, and am usually big on resolutions this time of year (less adept at keeping to them, I might add). One year I made a list of one hundred! By their sheer numbers, it took a while for them all to drop by the wayside! This year, I am doing it differently. I have three: Pay Attention; Do No Harm; Rejoice! That…and if I could just possibly make it to Zumba class now and then….

    • Kathy says:

      Good New Years Day, Cindy! I love your new list; how wonderful. Pay attention; Do No Harm; Rejoice! P.S. If you can’t make it to Zumba class all you have to do is pay attention to your deeper intent, not harm your body by choosing differently and rejoice that life has offered you a new creative possibility. Ha ha, Zumba to you!

  5. debyemm says:

    Happy New Year, Kathy !! I did roast in our oven Chestnuts in the shell for Thanksgiving Day stuffing. The stuffing was very good and infinitely intriguing but my right hand has still not recovered from numbness brought on by the strenuously difficult work. No wonder the recipe suggested jarred, shelled Chestnuts, which I could not find at the time. It was a worthwhile experience never-the-less; but I need not repeat it, all sentimentality aside !!!

    Each year I make a “release list” of goals (what I want to accomplish), wishes (things I want to manifest) and resolutions (behaviors, attitudes and practices); and then, put it away until the end of the year. It in interesting to take it out at the end of the year and see how things turned out. It is a no stress method of setting some intentions and letting them simmer within.

    Our friend, Laurie Buchanan, suggested a “focus” word. Mine for this year is “receptivity”. I think it really isn’t different than your statement. May your year prove worthy of gratitude in hindsight, Kathy, when its end comes in 12 months.

    • Kathy says:

      Well, Debby Yemm, I am utterly thrilled that someone else has experienced what this *chestnut fun* is all about. You understand totally. How interesting to read about your release list. To state your intention and then to see what falls away… I, too, pondered a focus word but all I can come up with is a feeling that can’t seem to be articulated. It’s a resolution of sorts, or an alignment of sorts, but am simply feeling it quietly instead of allowing it to bubble up to the lips. (Although it may bubble up there in the next moment, you never know.) Happy New Year to you!

  6. Beautiful first post for 2014, Kathy, thank you. Roasted chestnuts are a traditional meal in my family after grapes harvest. Either outside (in a pan with holes we put on a fire) or at home in the oven. Both ways are delicious. As for my first resolution of the year – and I promise you and others I will keep it – is to contact friends when you think of them, a call, an impromptu visit, a note, anything to let them know you think of them. Two days after Christmas a very good friend of mine passed. Suddenly. She barely had time to read my Holiday Season’s card where I wrote how much I missed her and how great it will be to meet again in January. A great shock but a deep gratitude that our paths met for several years.

    • Kathy says:

      Isa, how I would love to experience roasted chestnuts in a traditional meal with your family after the grape harvest. Just writing that sentence made me happy. It would be fascinating to see how a “professional” accomplishes it. Your resolution is so vital. How awful to lose a treasured friend like that–so quickly. Our time on this planet is limited indeed. Wanting also to be more grateful for each each passing soul.

  7. The one and only time I tasted a chestnut was at a party where Chestnuts were were roasted over an open fire. They were delicious! Now I’m hankering for some because your meal of chestnuts in brown rice with a salad sounds delicious and I want to try it.

    This time of year I love eating fruits that were ripened in the sun, especially red fruits; I enjoyed your description of red jelly gleaming in the sun; great way to start a new year! Filled with sun-ripened redness and more sun! This past summer I was blessed with a plethora of raspberries that I’ve put by in the freezer and enjoyed quite a few in last night’s dessert. Thinking of sun, warmth and ripening berries I’m eating from the past harvest keeps me warm and hopeful.

    I’m still working on a resolution I made some years ago; to remember that it’s always possible to be kind. Seems like enough and covers a lot of ground and takes a lot of work to fulfill. I do have a resolution this year which is to rejoin the gym.. This seems do-able.

    A Happy New Year to you and yours!

    • Kathy says:

      Gretchen, it was a very simple chestnut and brown rice dish. However, my husband requested some more for tomorrow (we still have leftover chestnuts) so it must have worked. I enjoyed reading your comment. The word “plethora” is a wonderful image. And to think of sun-ripened berries meeting a winter’s dessert is lovely. Hope you enjoy joining that gym and running on the treadmill or pedaling on the exercise bike. I’ve pondered that–briefly–as a possibility. Happy New Year back to you!

  8. it counts as chestnuts roasting on an open fire to me! Happiest of New Years Kathy!

  9. Heather says:

    Your Georgia celebrations sound just like our time down there in the winter 🙂 Just lovely.
    Now I’m thinking of making toast (have you tried coconut oil and made it Texas toast style? My new favorite!) and dreaming of chestnuts. I’ve never roasted chestnuts, but I’d tear a few fingernails for a bite!
    Happy 2014.

    • Kathy says:

      Hey, Ms. Heather, happy 2014 to you! OK, how do you make coconut oil Texas toast style? Should I Google it or do you just lather it on crunchy bread? (We have some in the cupboard.) Wishing we could send you some roasted chestnuts, but someone who is enterprising enough to make a quinzee should try it for herself. tee hee!

      • Heather says:

        You spread the coconut oil in a thin layer on bread and then brown it in a pan. It makes the bread perfectly crunchy and almost melt-in-your-mouth. On second thought, perhaps you should stay away from it 😉 (Like me and the chestnuts!)

        • Kathy says:

          Heather, I’m not sure I dare try it. Knowing me…it would be lethally addictive! (OK, maybe some day…)

          • Heather says:

            I’m limiting myself! Fortunately, we don’t have bread around very often, so I should be mostly safe 😉 (Though I’m drooling thinking about what great French toast it would make!)

  10. bearyweather says:

    Cabin Fever is setting in over here … yesterday’s high was 18 below and this morning it was 32 F below zero (without wind chills factored in)… I think I will rename this “Hibernation Season” … brrrr. Like you, it has been frigid for weeks (unusual) .. heading into months because January is typically our cold month. Hoping 2014 brings warmth!
    Curious … what did the chestnuts taste like?
    Happy New Year Kathy.

    • Kathy says:

      Bearyweather, that weather sounds SO darn cold! You are so much colder than we are. I can’t even imagine it. Hibernation Season sounds like the right words. I decided to push myself outside today–it was a high of 4 degrees, after all–and was glad afterward. 32 below zero would burn so much wood, I can hardly fathom it. The chestnuts tasted–well, how do you describe taste? Smoky. Sweet. Soft. Not like most other nuts. They had their own unique flavor. Happy New Year back at you.

      • bearyweather says:

        Our Governor has cancelled school across the State for Monday … we are expecting 70 below wind chills. Temperatures are dropping today and will go down to the 30’s and not come back up for a few more days. I hope this does not move your way …

  11. How fun to be able to celebrate with Korean food! Looks like fun, my friend.

    I’ve been away from the blogosphere for nearly two weeks. We’ve had guests from the US and have been traveling around our new home country. We are at the airport getting ready to fly from Quito to Cuenca, at which time posting should return to normal. Sorry to have missed so many posts.

    Happy New Year, my friend!

    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

    • Kathy says:

      -Two weeks is a long time to be missing from the blogosphere Kathy–we’ve missed you! (I was gone for eight days and it felt so odd…) Glad to hear you’ve been traveling and entertaining there in your Ecuador home. Happiest of New Years to you as well!

  12. Susan D says:

    Oh, Happy New Year, my friend! What a lovely New Year’s blog complete with interesting, beautiful, warm, and fun photos. I am happy to read about what you’ve been doing and experiencing.

    I had roasted chestnuts one time only. It was in Florida, of all places, while I was in college. A boyfriend roasted chestnuts over an open fire (I swear) on an interesting contraption. And they were soooo good. You brought back a wonderful memory of a special time and fella. Thank you.

    It IS darn cold this winter, and you know I like the cold. When it’s too cold for me, it’s darn cold, darn it. I’ve made myself go out in it every day to blow off the germs and cooties. Ha!

    No resolutions for me — I know myself too well to make any. I have to make them everyday as I trip and dance along the many paths of this wonderful life. Welcome home, dear lady!

    • Kathy says:

      Good morning, Susan Dee! How I look forward to spending time–virtual and in physical contact–with you in 2014. Gosh, it is cold, isn’t it? Brrrr….glad to hear that it can get too cold even for you! Tee hee. Yep, that resolution-making thing doesn’t really work for me in the long run. Like you, it’s a matter of focusing everyday and they tripping and dancing. Love that analogy! Also delighted to hear you roasted chestnuts in the sunny south with a long-ago beau. Was it Nat King Cole?

  13. Dawn says:

    I love the red clay hills of GA too…because one sister lives there and because it’s next door to the red clay fields of AL where more of my family lives. And because it’s usually warmer than here.

    Love the idea of a Korean dinner in GA with family. Can’t get better..well it could if your daughter could have been there too. But still…really cool.

    One year my brother was here for Christmas and we did indeed cook chestnuts…though not over an open fire, I think we did them in a skillet on the stove. But it’s gas, so there was open fire. Sort of. I remember they were pretty darn good.

    • Kathy says:

      Dawn, so you very well understand the joys of traveling to the Land of Red Clay. The warm(er) land. Gosh, yes, it would have been wonderful if our daughter could have made it. Luckily, I got to spend time with her in Florida in November, though, with the other side of the family. Smiling at your chestnut adventures. I would count a gas stove as an open fire. We have a propane stove, too.

  14. Dawn says:

    Chestnuts are a distinct childhood memory. Dad would slit them across the shell and roast them in the oven. They would be hot, fragrant and yummy. Those that escaped being eaten on the spot got put into our Thanksgiving stuffing. I am resolving to include more creativity in my life – and leave more space for the talents of others to enrich and inspire me.
    Happiest of New Years my long time blog friend. xoxo

    • Kathy says:

      Dawn, it has intrigued me tremendously to read comments from those who have actually roasted and eaten chestnuts. What a lovely memory of your dad cooking them and putting them in stuffing. They would make a marvelous stuffing. Wishing you a creativity and compassionate year, Dawn. Thank you for pausing back here at this doorstep and would you like another chestnut before you go?

  15. lucindalines says:

    Whatever you write sounds like poetry, such a talent. You should publish a book. Happy New Year, and enjoy that family time that is all you need for a resolution!!

    • Kathy says:

      Wow, that is such a lovely compliment, Lucinda. I do so like writing in this style. Maybe some day the Universe will nudge me to write a book. Hey, maybe that’s what the Universe is doing through YOU. Happiest of New Years back to you and your family!

  16. Pat says:

    Happy New Year, Kathy. 🙂

  17. Loved this post. Great writing as usual. Aways uplifting. I don’t make resolutions- never have and never will. Resolutions seem to be a pain. I just look for the goodness of everyday life.

    • Kathy says:

      Yvonne, thank you for enjoying the post and telling me so. I checked the other day to see if you’d written anything new and wondered how you were doing. I LOVE that you look for the goodness of everyday life. Who needs a resolution or six if that’s your core intent?

  18. Carol says:

    It’s so special to spend time with loved ones anytime, but during the holidays It is even more so. The new year brings with it many things I must take care of – a little now, a little then, but ultimately it will all be done. My resolve? To get things in order. To focus on the words of the year: simplify, harmony. Sent from my iPad

    >

    • Kathy says:

      Carol, I can’t even imagine all the little details of life that you must do right now to get things in order. And then all the nurturing of your weary heart and soul which will happen in the winter warmth of your home. May harmony and ease settle in with you under the afghan of your nurturing.

  19. Lori D says:

    Sounded like a lovely time in Georgia. I’d love those temps too. Stay warm my northern friend.

    • Kathy says:

      Lori, my mom and dad said it was in the 80’s in Florida. I can’t even imagine. Of course, I can’t even remember the mid-50’s in Georgia last week. Seems like it happened in a dream… This morning it’s zero. Barry said it actually felt warm when he started the car. I’m not counting on it when I start mine and go to the school soon.

  20. I’ve had chestnuts, but I’ve never roasted them myself.

    Wishing you a very Happy New Year!

  21. Brenda Hardie says:

    Happy, Happy New Year, Kathy! I’m feeling rather “left out” from the celebratory mood lately so am simply going through the motions, trying to keep up with everyone and everything. Had friends over yesterday and they are so in love and planning their wedding in May. My cousin is also engaged to be married and I am so happy for her. They got engaged on Christmas Eve. ♥ We are also anxious to have a belated Christmas with my oldest son, Ben and his girlfriend, Cassie. Ben was so sick over Christmas that they stayed home. So, now that he is better, we can finally celebrate with them. And we are in the final stages of the adoption of the little doggie, Dorothy–who we will rename Dodee. So, it’s puppy proofing time here! Busy, busy, busy!
    I have never had chestnuts roasted on an open fire but they sound delicious.
    I hope this new year brings you comfort, good health and enough joy to make you want to dance with delight! ♥

    • Kathy says:

      Brenda, Christmas can be challenging when we feel like we’re going through the motions. I would like to give you a big warm hug. Glad to hear that Ben is feeling better and that little doggie is headed your way–hopefully soon! Wishing you all the best in 2014 and beyond and beyond and beyond!

  22. Robin says:

    Happy New Year, Kathy! I have never roasted chestnuts (on an open or closed fire). I’m not sure I’ve ever eaten a chestnut. They look delicious. All of your images are beautiful, but I especially like the family portrait because love radiates out from it. I want to celebrate the wild creativity of life, too, but went ahead and made a few resolutions to keep me healthy enough to do that. I think I’ve been celebrating the wild without the creativity, and it’s time to find some balance. 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Ha ha, Robin, I must admit to a little celebrating the wild without the creativity, too. (That’s why we were eating such a simple meal of rice & chestnuts & salad.) I felt like it was high time to do something wild like roast chestnuts, just because how can you really know what those Christmas guys are singing about if you don’t discover for yourself? Perhaps you can roast chestnuts in your brand new sparkling gleaming amazing kitchen? Just a wild creative thought….

  23. Barb says:

    Hi Kathy, A great way to start the New Year – a post from you! I’m resolution-less, too. It’s so cold here and snowy – it could be the UP! I was thinking about roasting chestnuts when I saw a mesh bagful at market. I think I’ll just enjoy them vicariously though, through your adventure. If you visit my blog and see the pic of my Great Room, look to the left of the fireplace – the mysterious lady in the stone rests there.

    • Kathy says:

      Barb, it is so good to hear from you. I miss you when you’re on blogging breaks. (My blogging break lasted 8 days and felt like forever!) Shall scurry over to your Great Room now and look for the Lady in the Stone. Happy New Year!

  24. Stacy says:

    Ha – Norm picked some chestnuts from our tree (which we didn’t know was a chestnut tree until this fall) and I have been telling myself to search how to roast them. Thank you, again, Universe, for Kathy! We do this shelling thing with pecans every year and it does wreak havoc on the fingers, but so worth the pain.

    As for resolutions, mine is to NOT HAVE LIFE ENVY! (Oh, did I type that a little too loudly? My apologies!) Anyway, I want to be happy for others when I hear, read, or see their “perfect” life unfold – and to count my blessings, though they may be revealed to me in a different way.

    Happy new year, Kathy! I hope to visit with you often in 2014. ❤

    • Joanne says:

      Stacy, I read your comment after adding mine…isn’t Kathy a veritable well of information? I have a tip with your pecans too, clobber them gently but firmly with a small hammer first, it makes the shelling much easier. 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      I am grinning with ya, Stacy. Life envy is no-no-no good. Those who look like they’re living perfect lives are not showing or telling everything. (As we discussed in the Secrets We Don’t Tell or whatever the name of that blog was.) How cool to eat real pecans, even if you must suffer the pain. Perhaps that’s a metaphor for life? Living wreaks havoc on the fingernails, but it is SO worth the pain. 🙂

  25. Joanne says:

    Welcome home Kathy! I don’t want to think of anything else right now, your story of translucent red crab apple jelly, red Georgia clay, roasting chestnuts and family get-togethers are filling my mind with gladness to the brim! I will mention though that I have learned something of significance here; I once tried to roast chestnuts in my oven, but by the geeze it was hard to shell them! Here you tell me I should have roasted them in their shells! Well, there you go, who would have known? 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Thank you for the homecoming welcome, Joanne. I am still awaiting a certain piece of mail from across the continents. I am GLAD that this blog filled you with gladness. You may want to try roasting the chestnuts in the shells first next time, but, darn it, it’s still hard to shell ’em. It’s amazing that we figure out how to do things like this at all!

      • Joanne says:

        It hasn’t arrived yet?! I think the snails are extra slow delivering the snail-mail this year as yours isn’t the first to be slow in arriving. Next time I see chestnuts in the shops I’m going to have another go at roasting them, now I know how. 🙂

        • Kathy says:

          Well, I guess they don’t call them “snails” for nothing. Let’s think of the story of the tortoise and the hare and substitute snail. I’ll enjoy the delivery come mid-January, lol.

  26. Bonnie says:

    Happy New Year to you dear Kathy.

  27. Dana says:

    Interesting take on traditional resolutions, Kathy. We are led to believe that smart and wise souls always set resolutions for the new year, but could it be that those very resolutions limit us to certain experiences, feelings, and routines? “To not close down in fear or nervousness or sadness.” That line has really piqued my Deep Thoughts this evening. Off to ponder for a bit…

    • Kathy says:

      Yes, Dana, YES, I do believe it’s so! Every time I make a resolution (well, many times anyway) it feels like it’s too limiting in some way. The mind stages a revolt and insists on freedom. Instead, it feels utterly important to just stay present to whatever presents itself. Thanks for adding your input.

  28. Erin Maclean says:

    Yum! A lone chestnut fell into my bag of fingerling potatoes the other day at the market. They were right next together and the chestnut came home with me. I still have it….sitting on the counter where I prepare food and it always brings the song to mind. I think I need more to join it and then see how this roasting on an open fire works.

    Happy New Year Kathy! No resolutions here except maybe to roast some chestnuts.

    • Kathy says:

      Erin, I love the words “fingerling potatoes”. They make potatoes sound so interesting. How fun that a renegade chestnut decided to visit your house. Perhaps it will whisper chestnut secrets for 2014 for you!

  29. sandiwhite says:

    I’m so glad you enjoyed your time in Georgia, I had my eye on the weather every day, hoping it would be a warm and sunny one for y’all. After a month, it seems of gloomy gray days, things lightened up and we got those Chamber of Commerce days. I’m glad the Stae of Georgia planned such a warm welcome for you!

    • Kathy says:

      Sandi, I just love the way y’all say ya’ll. *grin* Thank you for sending those Chamber of Commerce days! It was awesome. One of these Georgia trips perhaps we shall meet face to face. Wouldn’t that be something?

  30. lisaspiral says:

    Glad you had good weather in Georgia. Hope those memories (and the wood stove) keep you cozy in the cold months ahead!

  31. sonali says:

    I don’t know how the roasted chestnuts taste like, but it did remind me of the cashew nuts we roast in the open fire during the monsoon season.. That’s a different atmosphere, one needs to experience. Well, Kathy did you like the Korean dinner? how different was it from the typical US food?
    Georgia I heard is a nice place for holidays..

    • Kathy says:

      Oh, Sonali, it would be so cool to say you’d roasted cashews during the monsoon season. Funny how we’re both so intrigued with other cultures. I did like the Korean food. It is different from other Asian foods, although I can’t articulate how. It is VERY different from typical US food. One has to have an adventuresome palette to try it. You would do fine.

  32. Your post made me smile 🙂
    Happy New Year and all the best for 2014!

  33. msmcword says:

    Kathy:
    Happy New Year.
    I will be honest: I do not have any resolutions for the new year, and I don’t plan to make any. But I hope to get some new ideas for posts for my blog.

    And I liked your “selfie”-I am not able to take a selfie with the camera on my cellphone.
    Nancy

    • Kathy says:

      Nancy, I am sure you will find some new ideas to share on your blog this year. And thank you for liking the “selfie”–I really never knew exactly what that was until last month. Happy New Year to you!

  34. Karma says:

    What a wonderful sounding holiday. Ah to lift one’s face to the sun and take in that blessed vitamin D! Perfect. Despite all the hard work, did you enjoy the roasted chestnuts? I’ve never had them, roasted or otherwise. I talked a little bit about goals and such for the new year in my last blog post; I don’t know that I’d call them resolutions, as I’d prefer for it to be a lifestyle change. I’m hoping for 2014 to be as positive and good-feeling as possible 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Karma, I did enjoy the roasted chestnuts, but am not sure they’re worth all the work. Of course, it’s mandatory that we try to do these things at least once in life, yes? Lifestyle changes sound inspiring and I hope that 2014 is everything you wish for, my friend.

  35. Happy New Year Kathy! Love hearing about your holidays. The chestnuts (yum!) and the evil thermometer. Yes 2 degrees is a naughty trick! And do I remember Georgia Christmases with their balmy air. Hope 2014 is the best ever for you and your family. And me too – no resolutions – just moment to moment for me.

    • Kathy says:

      Patty, glad you enjoyed this little chestnut tale with a villain tossed in. tee hee. Ahhh, Georgia. I’ve already forgotten what it felt like, except in the vaguest sort of memory. It’s snowing sideways now and blowing and so darn cold one dare not open the front door. OK, I dared earlier, but am opting to stay inside until spring now. *grin*

  36. Lots of nice images Kathy–sounds like your holidays have been lovely. Happy New Year!

  37. Fantastic post! I just made chestnut crème, and am having fun seeing other takes on these fabulous little treats!

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