Peppermint Nostalgia

Candy canes are as synonymous with the Christmas holidays as Christmas trees, stockings, and Santa Claus.  But you’re not likely to find those crook-necked confections in my household.  No, when I buy peppermint it has to be King Leo stick candy.

Originally made by the Standard Candy Company in Nashville, TN, King Leo has been a regional favorite for over 100 years.  Indeed it has been a tradition in my family for several generations.  Those trademark blue tins with the lion were permanent fixtures in the homes of my grandparents and great-grandparents–not just during the holiday season, but year round.

One time, when I was in elementary school, I found a King Leo tin in my grandparents’s garage.  Anticipating that soft, chalky peppermint perfection, my mouth watered as I pried open the lid.  Imagine my disappointment when I found nuts and bolts (of the metal variety, not the edible variety) instead.  Oh well, at least they repurposed the container.

My fondest memory associated with King Leo is that a tin was always within arm’s reach of my great-grandfather.  He smelled of peppermint and chewing tobacco, and every time I see that familiar logo I recall my sweet Granddaddy.

If you happen to see King Leo when you’re out and about this holiday season, consider giving it a try.  Those soft sticks are great for garnishing baked goods, using as stir sticks in hot chocolate, or simply on their own.


These Shoes Were Made for Running





Loads of thanks to all who have offered words of encouragement, training tips, etc.  My circle of support and accountability just keeps growing!  Official training kicks off on January 7, 2012.

    “The greatest temptation we have to overcome is the temptation to give up!”

– Anonymous

A Feast for the Eyes

Image via

Thanksgiving is less than a week away.  Are you ready?  It snuck up on me like a ninja, so I am eternally thankful that I’m not hosting this year.  There just wouldn’t be enough time to do it up the way I’d want to  – which means not only planning a menu that will please everyone, but creating a nice tablescape (to please me, if no one else).

Even though I got a pass on hostess responsibilities this year, I found myself browsing through some ideas on the internet the other day.  My simple searching quickly spun out of control.  One minute I was grazing Thanksgiving décor – the next, I was gorging myself on the most fabulous fashion and interior design. I felt like Augustus Gloop in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory when I found this site:
Simple Everyday Glamour is simply captivating – a feast for your eyes.  And I think the Halloween post is wickedly cool.

Thank goodness I have a good month to plan the Christmas feast.

Decisions, Decisions

Riddle:  Three crows were sitting on a fence.  One decided to fly away.  How many were left?

Answer:   Three.  The one crow decided to fly away.  Just because we decide to do something doesn’t mean we always follow through.

For the last nine years, I have helped raise funds for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation through participation in the Nashville Great Strides walk.  Last year I considered raising those funds by joining several fellow CFF supporters in our local marathon / half marathon (keyword = considered).

A couple of weeks ago, I started mulling over the idea again and I have come to a decision.  I am going to train for the Country Music Marathon & ½ Marathon which will be held on April 28, 2012.  I have decided; now all I have to do is follow through!

Staying motivated and inspired will be keys to help me make good on my commitment.  Now that I have declared this online, I am certainly motivated.  You readers will help keep me accountable, right?

As for inspiration, there are many sources.  These three were foremost in my mind when I came to my decision:

  1. My brother Andy and the fact that April 24, 2012 will be the 10th anniversary of his passing.
  2. A new CF friend who received a lung transplant this summer will be training for and running in the marathon as well.
  3. Kevin Dwyer, a 38 year old CFer who completed the New York City Marathon on November 6, 2011.  Please take a few minutes to check out his blog.

At this rate, there is no telling how this will go down.  I’m intimidated by the idea but I’m going to put my best foot (or should I say feet?) forward.  Wish me luck and stay tuned!

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