Sunday, July 10, 2011

Happy Birthday, America!

Happy Birthday, America!  We have much for which to be thankful on Independence Day.  In celebration of this special day, we visited with family and friends across the land – well, at least parts of south Georgia and our corner of Alabama!

Our patriotic weekend began at the Fort Mitchell National Cemetery.  The cemetery reminds visitors that many individuals serve our country during their lifetime; it is a visible and meaningful representation of service to our country.  During our visit on Friday, July 1, 2011, we paid last respects to my uncle, Peter Soukup.  Uncle Pete was married to my dad’s oldest sister Frances Parkman Soukup for more than 50 years and was father to five of my first cousins.  He served the United States of America with his military service, retiring as Colonel.  The site of the American flag draped over this former soldier’s casket was poignant.  In spite of temperatures in the upper 90s, chill bumps covered my arms during the 21-gun salute and playing of Taps.

Going on now for a decade, an annual Independence Day tradition includes a trip to see the Hornsbys in South Georgia.  Angie and Payne Hornsby host us at their comfortable lake house on the Spring Creek branch of Lake Seminole.  Look for an upcoming post dedicated to our kayak trip down Spring Creek.

Hornsby and Smith kids at Lake Seminole

After leaving Lake Seminole, we drove to Lake Eufaula to see Mammy.  Of course, we miss Papa being there.  He sure loved all the food and fixings that comes along with the 4th of July – barbeque, corn, potato salad, Brunswick stew, and more!  We visited with Mammy and ate lots of delicious food.

Mammy, Ben, and the kids at Lake Eufaula
We wrapped up our weekend in Parkmanville at Mama Ann’s house.  She fixed a family favorite – homemade ice cream!  So cool and creamy, we were all ready to enjoy a big bowl.  The ice cream recipe originated from my mom's mom, Georgia Pharris Dudley; we called her Mama Georgia.  The ice cream is easy to prepare and is a staple recipe for summer get-togethers.

Mama Georgia’s Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream
  • 2 cans condensed milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 T vanilla
  • milk, 2% or whole (Mama Georgia used whole milk; Ann uses 2%.)
Beat eggs.  Add condensed milk.  Stir in vanilla.  Pour into ice cream canister; add milk to the “fill line" of ice cream canister.  Place in ice cream maker; pack with ice cream salt and ice.  Ice cream is ready when motor stops turning ice cream canister. 

Mama Ann enjoys homemade ice cream with the kids.

1 comment:

  1. The ice cream sounds divine! I'll take a scoop, please!