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2015 Board Election Timeline JANUARY 2015

Central Alabama



Seizing Opportunities Looking Back & Moving Forward


Sharing the Load How CAEC's Peak Shaving Program Works

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ON THE COVER: Happy New Year!

Central Alabama Electric Cooperative P.O. Box 681570 Prattville, AL 36068 www.caec.coop Advertising and Editorial Offices: 340 TechnaCenter Dr. Montgomery, AL 36117-6031 1-800-410-2737 E-mail: jjohnson@areapower.com National Advertising Representative: National Country Market 611 South Congress Ave., Ste. 504 Austin, TX 78704 1-800-626-1181 www.nationalcountrymarket.com Alabama Rural Electric Association: Fred Braswell, AREA President Lenore Vickrey, Editor Allison Griffin, Managing Editor Mark Stephenson, Creative Director Michael Cornelison, Art Director Jacob Johnson, Advertising Director Mary Tyler Spivey, Recipe Editor Brooke Davis, Advertising Alabama Living is delivered to some 420,000 Alabama families and businesses which are members of 22 not-for-profit, consumer owned, locally directed and taxpaying electric cooperatives. Member subscriptions are $3 per year; nonmembers are $6. Alabama Living (USPS 029-920) is published monthly by AREA. Periodicals postage paid at Montgomery, Ala., and at additional mailing office.

Quick and easy Payment Kiosks



Peak Shaving Program


You voted!


Comfort food

Working together to keep wholesale rates stable for everyone.

9 Spotlight 28 Alabama Gardens 30 Outdoors

The votes are in and we’ve got the winners in our latest “Best of Alabama” contest. Did your favorites make the cut?

Don’t look for any frozen or processed food at this meat ‘n’ three diner, where fresh ingredients and traditional lunches are a staple on the menu.

34 Cook of the Month 46 Alabama Snapshots

POSTMASTER send forms 3579 to: Alabama Living, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124-4014. USPS 029-920 ISSN 1047-0311

When you see this symbol, it means there’s more content online at www.alabamaliving.coop! Videos, expanded stories and more!

Printed in America from American materials

Alabama Living

JANUARY 2015 3

Seizing Opportunities Board of Trustees Chase Riddle

Chairman, Prattville (334) 365-3648

Jimmie Harrison, Jr. Vice Chairman, Maplesville (334) 366-4338

C. Milton Johnson Statesville (334) 412-2843

Mark Presnell, Sr. Wetumpka (334) 567-2689

Patsy M. Holmes Wetumpka (334) 567-8273

Terry Mitchell Stewartville (256) 249-3128

David A. Kelley, Sr. Rockford (256) 496-0160

Van Smith

Billingsley (205) 755-6166

Charles Byrd Deatsville (334) 361-3324

Contact Us Toll Free: 1-800-545-5735 Outage Hotline: 1-800-619-5460 www.caec.coop Prattville Office: 1802 U.S. Hwy. 31 North Mailing: P.O. Box 681570 Prattville, AL 36068 Clanton Office: 1601 7th St. North Rockford Office: 9191 U.S. Hwy. 231 Wetumpka Office: 637 Coosa River Pkwy.


s we say goodbye and reflect on the year that was, we often find ourselves anticipating what the New Year will bring. And while we may not know exactly what will happen over the next 365 days, we can be assured there will be challenges as well as opportunities. Our responses, especially to those issues that affect you, our members, are critical to the opportunities we have to serve you effectively. Reflecting on 2014 brings to mind one of CAEC’s more noticeable accomplishments: the start of construction on our new Prattville headquarters to replace our current 47-year-old facility. As part of our long-term and ongoing infrastructure upgrade plan, the new building will open this year and offer better service for our members with improvements such as a drive-thru, as well as additional tenant space to aid in job recruitment and economic development in the area. If you drive on U.S. Highway 31 and see the external improvements being made with the new headquarters construction, what you won’t see are some of the internal changes we made in the last 12 months to better meet member expectations. Last January we implemented a more efficient call center. By examining trends and working with existing personnel, this enhancement has reduced call-hold and wait times for our members. Additionally, we improved self-service payment opportunities with kiosks at our Clanton and Wetumpka service centers, with plans to install a kiosk in the new Prattville building this year and the Rockford office in the future (you can learn more about the kiosks on pages 6-7). Efforts from 2014 will also bring about change in 2015. As we move into our new headquarters, the land and facilities we currently occupy will be sold, bringing jobs and economic growth in the area. Due to this activity, we will be moving our 2015 Annual Meeting and Member Appreciation Day to the new location of our West Operations Center in Chilton County. More information about this move will be shared as we draw closer to the event which is scheduled for Aug. 14, 2015. Your co-op also enters 2015 with plans to increase reliability through infrastructure upgrades. Our new Ray substation in Coosa County will go online in May, improving service for 628 active meters. Later this year, we will also begin construction on the Burkville substation in Lowndes County to improve service for those on the farthest part of our service as we strive to deliver the highest quality power for all of our members. Many projects were accomplished in 2014, all with the goal of enhancing our service to you. As we welcome a new year, may any challenges we face become opportunities for exceeding your expectations. A

Tom Stackhouse President/CEO


2015 Board Election Timeline March 24 Trustees appoint Nominating Committee (Article IV, Section 4.05 of Member Bylaws). April 10 Nominating Committee meets (Article IV, Section 4.05). May 15 Nominating Committee posts slate of nominees for Districts 3, 7 and 8 at all CAEC customer service centers and on CAEC’s website, www.caec.coop (Article IV, Section 4.05). May 26 Nominations by petition must be received by 4:30 p.m. (Article IV, Section 4.05). July Alabama Living magazine will include all candidates' names and the mail-in ballot. July 24 Record date for voting (Article III, Section 3.07). Must be a member by this date in order to vote.

High School Seniors: CAEC Scholarship Forms Available!


ollege scholarship applications are now available to high school seniors

graduating this spring. Two $1,500 scholarships will be awarded by the Electric Cooperative Foundation, Inc. (ECF), which provides scholarships for post-

August Magazine will include CAEC’s 2014 Annual Report. If you choose to vote at Annual Meeting, please bring your registration form to the meeting.

secondary institutions.

August 7 Deadline for mail-in ballot to be postmarked (Article III, Section 3.03).

directly to the educational institution for credit

August 14 Annual Meeting, CAEC's West Operations Center, 74 CR 578, Verbena, one-half mile west of Exit 200 on I-65. Election results will be announced.

any of our service centers or by calling

Applicants must be dependents of CAEC members. The scholarship will be paid by ECF to the student’s account. Applications are available at www.caec.coop, (334) 351-2125 or 1-800-545-5735, ext. 2125 to have an application mailed to you.

Deadline is February 27

A New Convenient Payment Option


ur lives can be quite hectic—between work, family and extracurricular activities, we often find ourselves in need of more hours in the day. Our schedules are as unique as we are, and for this reason CAEC offers a variety of ways to pay your bill and manage your account—from online and mobile app access to bank draft and phone service, we do our best to accommodate all of our members. With this in mind, we added a 24-hour, self-service kiosk to allow members to pay on their account 365 days a year. Currently available in our Clanton and Wetumpka service centers, the kiosk allows you to receive your account balances and make payments with cash, check or a credit/debit card. After each transaction, accounts are updated within a few minutes of completing the transaction and you are provided a printed receipt. The process is quick, simple and done using a touch-screen with instructions in both English and Spanish. “The kiosks really help us efficiently serve members by allowing them to quickly access their account if there

CAEC Member Jana Miller takes advantage of the payment kiosk located at the Clanton Service Center. The kiosk allows her to make a payment around her schedule.

6  JANUARY 2015

is a long line waiting to be served at the front counter,” said Senior Customer Service Representative Kim Bavar. “It’s also a wonderful way for members to make payments as their day allows, even when the office is closed.” To utilize the kiosk, members must have their account number. After that is entered, the easy to follow instructions walk you through the process. If a cash payment is made, the machine does not make change or return cash, but any overage will be applied to your account. For member Jana Miller of Jemison, the kiosk is a very welcome sight to the Clanton office, where she regularly pays her bill. “This is so convenient and very simple to use,” Miller said. “As a home-health nurse my daily schedule varies. Knowing that I can simply run by, any time of day, it really makes my life so much easier.” Miller also appreciates the easy-to use touch screen. “It’s very easy to read, simple and there are no small buttons to press.” In addition to providing another convenient payment option for our members, the kiosks reduce congestion in the offices and are a less expensive method for collecting payments. The implementation of such technology, in an effort to provide effective customer service, is part of CAEC’s continuous strategic planning process. “As our membership grows and changes, so do the methods by which members wish to interact with us,” said Vice President of Customer and Energy Services, Chuck Billings. “By embracing new technologies we can offer more efficient options while meeting their needs.” Kiosks were installed in Clanton on Nov. 4 and Wetumpka on Nov. 13 of last year. A kiosk will be installed at the new Prattville office and will be available at the Rockford office in the future. A

CAEC Customer Service The payment kiosk allows members to make cash, check or credit/debit payments 24-hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Below are some sample screen shots to walk you through the simple process.

1. The User Agreement gives permission to send your payment to the appropriate biller (CAEC). You must click Accept to proceed with your payment through the kiosk.

3. Select a payment option. The kiosk accepts cash, check or credit/debit cards. It will not make change, so any cash over the payment amount will be credited to the account.

2. You will be prompted to enter your account number or scan the barcode on your bill. Additional screens will ask for the last name on the account as well as a phone number and either the last four digits of the Social Security Number or birthday.

4. After the payment is submitted, a screen will display the amount credited to the account. Once the transaction is finished, you will receive a receipt.

CAEC Programs

Strength in Numbers: CAEC's Peak Shaving Program


art of my job is to help inform our members of the many programs CAEC offers to help you use energy more efficiently and to help save your energy dollars. One of these iniCindy Browder tiatives is the Peak Shaving ProEnergy Services gram, which we’ve offered since Representative implementation in October 2007. Currently, this program targets electric hot water heaters, which account for approximately 18 percent of a home’s annual electricity usage. To help reduce the amount of electricity consumed during peak times, a peak shaving device (PSD) is installed on a member’s electric water heater and reduces energy usage during peak times by delaying the reheating cycle to non-peak times. You still have hot water when you need it while helping to reduce the system’s peak energy needs. Peak demand is when consumers collectively use the most electricity.

Many times, I’m asked if the installation of a PSD will help lower a home’s power bill, and while you may not directly see a decrease in your monthly bill, you and all other Peak Shaving Program participants are in fact helping to control future power costs. How? By following the old adage that “there is strength in numbers.” Each day when thousands of households begin the morning routine of showering, making coffee and break8  JANUARY 2015

fast, checking email, watching the morning news, and again in the evening when returning home and switching on appliances simultaneously to prepare dinner, start the dishwasher or wash a load of clothes, everyone is contributing to energy usage known as peak demand. This peak demand is when electricity consumers collectively use the most energy. And even though this excessive quantity of energy is not needed throughout the day, electricity providers, such as our generation and transmission provider PowerSouth, are required to have the resources available whenever consumers need it. This leads to the necessity of building expensive peaking plants just for those short time-frames of high usage. By joining with other cooperatives, we work to help PowerSouth offset some of this high demand by shaving (reducing) peak energy use. The objective of the Peak Shaving Program is simple – if CAEC’s system demand usage can be reduced during peak times, then we can lower the effect of our wholesale power cost. So while you may not see the savings directly on your bill today, keeping our wholesale power costs down helps keep rates stable for all our members. How does the program work? • Let CAEC know you want to participate in the free Peak Shaving Program. Call (800) 545-5735, ext. 2118 or fill out the form on page 42 and mail it in or drop it by one of our service centers. • Those who participate also qualify for an electric water heater rebate. • The PSD is installed by a licensed electrician at no cost to you. • You still have hot water when you need it; the reheating process is just delayed to off-peak times. If you have questions about CAEC’s peak shaving program or would like to help keep our wholesale power rates low by signing up, call (800) 545-5735, extension 2118 or email cbrowder@coop.caec.com. A

Spot Light

In January

JAN. 1

‘Polar Bear’ parties at the beach Prepare to take a frosty dip in the Gulf at the 5K and Family Polar Bear Dip on New Year’s Day at The Hangout in Gulf Shores. The party starts at 11 a.m., with the dip at 12 p.m. Prizes given for dippers in costume by the Kiwanis Club of Gulf Shores, which sponsors the event. Not to be outdone, the Flora-Bama in Orange Beach will have its own Polar Bear Dip beginning at noon. The bar provides the traditional black-eyed peas, cornbread and ham for those who take the plunge. Log on to www.gulfshoreskiwanis.com and www. florabama.com


Keep your eyes to the skies for eagles Study the bald eagle, one of our country’s most magnificent symbols, during the Eagle Awareness Weekends at Lake Guntersville State Park. Each weekend in January and February, there will be live bird demonstrations, programs by notable speakers and guided field trips to view eagles in their natural habitat. This marks the 30th anniversary of this family-friendly educational program. For more information, log on to www.alapark.com or call 800-548-4553. JAN. 30-31 JAN. 1

Remembering a music legend The Hank Williams Museum in downtown Montgomery will be open New Year’s Day on the 62nd anniversary of Williams’ death. The country music icon was just 29 when he died en route to a show in Canton, Ohio. Come out for a wreath laying at Williams’ gravesite in Oakwood Cemetery at 10 a.m.; then head downtown for live music at the museum until 2 p.m. Black-eyed peas will be served; admission is $10 each. The museum is located at 118 Commerce St. Log on to www.thehankwilliamsmuseum. net or call 334-262-3600.

Hear the magic of the spoken word Come listen to some of the country’s top storytellers at the Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival, which kicks off on Friday night with supper and stories at the We Piddle Around Theater in Brundidge, and continues with three storytelling concerts at 10 a.m., 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Trojan Center Theater on the Troy University campus. The concerts feature preshow music by popular old-time music groups. Admission for supper is $25, and the concerts are $10 each. For more information, log on to www.piddle.org or call 334-735-3125.

Want to see more events or submit your own? Alabama Living

Visit www.alabamaliving.coop to submit an event and view our calendar or email an event to events@alabamaliving.coop.

JANUARY 2015 9

Power Pack

Ring in the new year with a COLA Happy new year from Social Security! Put down the champagne and ring in the new year with a COLA! And we don’t mean the soda. In 2015, nearly 64 million Americans who receive Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) will receive a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) increase to their monthly benefit payments of 1.7 percent. The average monthly Social Security benefit for a retired worker in 2015 is $1,328 (up from $1,306 in 2014). The average monthly Social Security benefit for a disabled worker in 2015 is $1,165 (up from $1,146 in 2014). For people who receive SSI, the maximum federal payment amount

Letters to the editor

In praise of lard Dear editor, I could not believe it when I picked up my Alabama Living and came across your article on lard. Just a week ago my family was here for Thanksgiving and the granddaughters and I were making biscuits. First question, “What is that, grandma?” Well, you know it was lard. Their dad was surprised that lard was still available at the grocers, and thank goodness. I have never mastered piecrust with lard, but a biscuit would not be a biscuit without it. Thanks for the memory. Maybe I’ll try piecrust again. Myrna Monroe Atmore and Orange Beach

Myrna Monroe makes biscuits with granddaughter Madison

Dear editor, I just read the article on lard in Alabama Living (December 2014). I love it and totally agree! Last January I decided to try the Daniel Plan to change my family’s eating habits. About half way through the 400day plan, I realized this wasn’t exactly the

10 JANUARY 2015

increased to $733 (up from $721 in 2014). Other Social Security changes in 2015 are also worth noting. For example, the maximum amount of earnings subject to the Social Security payroll tax will increase to $118,500 (up from $117,000 in 2014). A worker will earn one credit toward Social Security coverage after paying taxes on $1,220 in earnings in 2015 (up from $1,200 in 2014). As a reminder, eligibility for retirement benefits still requires 40 credits (usually about 10 years of work). Information about Medicare changes for 2015 is available at www.medicare.gov. The Social Security Act outlines how the COLA is calculated. To read more about the COLA, please visit www.

socialsecurity.gov/cola. To learn more about other changes in 2015, read our fact sheet at www.socialsecurity.gov/news/press/factsheets/colafacts2015.html. A

healthy, natural foods I could live on for the rest of my life. The plan took most of the sugar out of your diet but replaced it with agave and stevia, which is not a natural substitute I could live with. It also banned all pork. Let’s face it we live in the South and we must at least eat ribs a few times a year. Also, the only oil it recommends is olive oil and grape seed oil. This is fine for some food, but not all. I started searching the internet for a more natural way of life. I came across the blog 100 Days of Real Food. Bingo! All natural, no processed foods and as much organic as possible. Just the way my grandparents ate. I began the learning process in February and we have not looked back! My only problem is that I cannot find lard. I have searched Tuscaloosa County and Jefferson County. Where do you purchase your lard? Thank you so much for this article. I will pass it along to the unbelievers who keep telling me I am not eating healthy. After all, I have only lost 62 pounds since February. My blood pressure is once again normal. I am not on a diet. I just cut out all processed and unnatural foods in my diet. Oh, and one more thing - I did replace most sugar but not with agave and stevia. I replaced it with 100% maple syrup and local honey. I also want to mention that I love, love, love (Hardy Jackson’s) book - The Rise and Decline of the Redneck Rivera. It brought back so many good memories.

Hardy Jackson replies: You should be able to find lard at a small town independent grocery that sells other pig-parts or a market where “foodies” shop for natural foods. Failing with that, you might just have to render some yourself.

Denise Mitchell Northport and Gulf Shores

Kylle’ McKinney, Alabama Social Security Public Affairs Specialist, can be reached in Montgomery at 866-593-0914, ext. 26265, or at kylle. mckinney@ssa.gov.

Dear editor, I a l m o s t d i d n’ t r e a d G a r y Smith’s column on “What are they saying?”(December 2014). (I am) Most fortunate that I did. It’s amazing that most of the people that you quoted are living their lives based on too many Disney cartoons, or the nonsense spouted by Karl Marx, etc. Let’s appropriate Mr. Strong’s billions and have him live like most people did back in the 1840s or so and see how he would like living in a log cabin, using an outhouse, growing his own food and traveling by foot or horseback to destinations. For further reading, check out The Creature from Jekyll Island by G. Edward Griffin. Sincerely, James Mayton Wetumpka Let us hear from you! Write us at letters@ alabamaliving.coop or through our website, alabamaliving.coop, or on our Facebook page.


Control triggers to reduce asthma episodes Asthma is recognized as one of the most common chronic diseases in the United States. The good news is that although there is no cure for asthma, it can be controlled through appropriate medication use and environmental awareness. Asthma is a long-term, inflammatory disease that causes the airways of the lungs to tighten and constrict, leading to wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness and coughing. The inflammation also causes the airways of the lungs to become especially sensitive to a variety of asthma triggers that make asthma worse. The particular triggers and the severity of symptoms can differ for each person with asthma. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that asthma affected 7 million children and 18.7 million adult Americans in 2010. According to the 2011 National Vital Statistics report, there were 3,388 primary asthma deaths in the United States in 2009. This is equal to nine American asthma deaths daily. One out of every ten school-age children has asthma, and it is the leading cause of school absenteeism due to a chronic condition. Asthma typically begins during the childhood years, but it can be difficult to diagnose. I know because it has affected

my own family. We learned that one of my sons had exercise-induced asthma only when he passed out at school after running a mile. Beginning with that experience, he started carrying an inhaler and is now an adult doing fine. Remember that children cannot always control their own environment, and may need you to advocate for them. When people come in contact with an asthma trigger, it can cause a sudden worsening of symptoms. The American Lung Association has made the following suggestions to help reduce environmental asthma triggers for children and adults. Do your best to avoid respiratory and sinus infections; get a flu vaccine every year. Discuss any medicines or food allergies (such as peanuts and shellfish) you may have with your health care provider. Control sources of indoor air pollutants; avoid all types of smoke. Limit time outdoors during high pollen times of the year (spring and fall) and in extreme temperatures (summer and winter). Control animal allergens; vacuum and damp dust weekly and keep pets out of bedrooms. If prescribed, use quick-relief medicine

15-30 minutes before physical activity and monitor air quality if exercising outside. Control cockroach and pest allergens; reduce exposure to dust mites. Choose fragrance-free perfumes, deodorants, and cleaning supplies. Clean up mold and control moisture. Finally, stress can be a significant trigger of asthma flare-ups. Emotions such as laughing or crying too hard, feeling anxious, angry, fearful, and yelling can trigger an asthma episode. Your health care provider can help you recognize what makes your asthma worse and help you find solutions. A

Jim McVay, Dr.P.A., is director of the Bureau of Health Promotion and Chronic Disease of the Alabama Department of Public Health.

Down memory lane with Pages from the past Skiers still head to Cloudmont in north Alabama In the January 1985 pages of Alabama Living, Alabama’s only ski resort, Cloudmont, was featured. Today, 30 years later, the resort remains, as its slogan proclaims, “the southeastern most ski resort in the U.S.” Cloudmont, located atop Lookout Mountain in Mentone, was described as the perfect place for a snow skiing vacation close to home. “Even if you’ve never been on skis before, a few hours of expert guidance from one of the instructors is all it takes,” the article stated. Alabama Living

Since 1985, the resort has expanded to include two 1,000-foot, beginner-intermediate slopes and two lifts that take skiers to the top of the slopes with an elevation of 1,800 feet and a vertical rise of 150 feet. The snow machine starts cranking up when temperatures drop to 28 degrees or colder, according to its website, cloudmont.com. The resort also now includes Saddle Rock Golf Course and Shady Grove Dude Ranch. The resort is open daily during ski season from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., on weekends

and holidays, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays, and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., daily, weather permitting. Check ski c ond it i ons on the website at www. cloudmont.com JANUARY 2015 11

By Allison Griffin

You voted, and the winners are… Here at Alabama Living, we’re always looking for ways to highlight some of the places, people and products that make Alabama great. We’re continuing our “Best of Alabama” contest for the second year, and included a questionnaire last summer to get your opinions. We wanted to go beyond “best product” or “best state park.” Instead, we asked you for the best advice for a newcomer moving to Alabama; for the best place to get married; for the best random roadside attraction; and for the best thing about living in Alabama, among others. Thank you to the hundreds of you who responded. Read on to see if you agree with the winners! Advice for a newbie: Pick a team!


t’s no surprise when we asked the question, “What’s the best advice for a newcomer moving to Alabama,” the majority of responses were football-related. Of course, it might be due to the timeframe -- we asked readers to respond to our “Best of Alabama” poll during the football months -- but we think the outcome wouldn’t change. What we did find interesting: Out of just more than 250 online responses, 31 were “pick a team,” “pick Auburn or Alabama,” or some variation. So at least 12 percent of you were thoughtful enough to offer an answer that didn’t favor either team. But get this: 13 responses were “Roll Tide” or some University of Alabama variation. Auburn, however, received no votes at all. Troy University’s Trojans garnered one vote. Now, the Alabama fans on our staff might interpret this to mean that the majority of our readers pull for the Tide. But we’re definitely not that scientific! College football did top our “best advice” question, but we received all kinds of responses to this open-ended question, some of them very humorous. The second-highest vote getter was our crazy Alabama weather, coming in with 39 various responses. 12 JANUARY 2015

Among our other favorite responses: “Don’t EVER put up your summer clothes.” “Learn to say ‘y’all.’ We are hospitable and Southern to the core -- embrace it!” “Be sure to try sweet tea.” “Don’t expect ‘fast.’ Life is slower.” “When in Rome, do as the Romans do. Do not try to change us.” “Don’t ever say, ‘That’s how we do it up north.’” “Smile and wave. It’s the Southern way. Don’t be alarmed.” “It is OK when people are extra friendly here.” This response sums it up for us: “Alabama has evStatue of Bo Jackson standing erything. Enjoy!”

outside Jordan Hare Stadium. PHOTO BY ALLISON GRIFFIN


Clockwise from bottom, Priscilla, Joy, Elisabeth, Hannah, Caroline and Jonathan Doggett take a selfie at The Hangout in Gulf Shores. PHOTO BY MICHELLE ROLLS-THOMAS

Best advice for a newcomer moving to Alabama: Pick a football team Best city/town with unique or funny name: Slapout

More formally known as Holtville, the casual nickname for this small Elmore County community near Lake Jordan got its name from, according to lore, a general store that existed there around the 1920s. The store would occasionally be “slap out” of goods, and when asked, the storekeeper would say, “I’m slap out.” Just last year, the town got an unexpected boost of publicity thanks to native Jessica Meuse, who made it to the finals of season 13 of the Fox show “American Idol.” Runners up: Burnt Corn in Monroe County, and Lick Skillet, near Hazel Green in Madison County

Best all-time athlete, past or present: Bo Jackson

The former Auburn University standout and multi-talented athlete from the 1980s won this category by a large margin. Born in Bessemer, he led Auburn to the Sugar Bowl and qualified for the U.S. Olympic track and field team; he started his MLB career in 1986 with the Kansas City Royals, and later played for the Chicago White Sox and California Angels. He signed with the NFL’s L.A. Raiders in 1987 a n d played f o u r years of pro football before he was sidelined by injury in 1991. Runners up: Joe Namath, quarterback for the Alabama Crimson Tide and the NFL and AFL; and Jesse Owens, four-time Olympic gold medalist from Oakville. Alabama Living

JANUARY 2015  13

Best location in Alabama for a selfie: Beaches

Check out our cover shot for an illustration of this cell phone phenomenon, shot at The Hangout in Gulf Shores. Runners up: Vulcan in Birmingham, Cheaha State Park in Clay and Cleburne counties

Best Alabama export: Cotton

The state’s largest row crop has strong roots in Alabama’s economic development history. The search for land to grow it brought the state’s first settlers to Alabama’s river valleys; its production created two dominant labor systems (slavery and sharecropping.) Although it is no longer a “king” of Alabama’s agriculture, the state’s farmers planted nearly 460,000 acres of cotton in 2011, according to the Alabama Farmers Federation, and the crop is grown in 59 of Alabama’s 67 counties. Runners up: automotive products, peanuts

Best movie about Alabama: “Sweet Home Alabama”

The 2002 hit romantic comedy starred Reese Witherspoon and Josh Lucas (both Southerners in real life, but not Alabamians) and was filmed primarily in the South (but not in Alabama.) Critics praised Witherspoon’s charm, and the movie eventually grossed more than $120 million at the box office, but it wasn’t universally admired: Critics also panned its preposterous story line and lack of true comedy. Runners up: “Forrest Gump,” “To Kill a Mockingbird”

Best statue or historical marker in Alabama: Vulcan

Watching over Birmingham is Vulcan, the Roman god of fire and forge, an appropriate symbol of the city’s iron origins. At 56 feet tall, it’s the world’s largest cast iron statue, according to its website, and was designed by Italian artist Giuseppe Moretti and cast from local iron in 1904. An educational park complex helps interpret Alabama’s industrial history for visitors and residents alike. Runner up: Boll Weevil Monument, Enterprise

Best place to get married: The beach (including responses of Gulf Shores, Orange Best place to go on a first date: The beach

A caveat here: You gave us nearly 100 different responses to this open-ended question. And you’ll see Alabama’s beaches show up in several other categories, so be prepared for some repetition. But the sugar white sands and famed restaurants along Alabama’s Gulf Coast are undeniably attractive, so it’s easy to see why they garnered so many votes for this question. Runners up: an Auburn or Alabama football game, the Fairhope pier

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Beach and “the beach”) Again, winning with 30 percent of the vote, are Alabama’s beaches. Baldwin County was also the choice for the state’s newest “it” couple, former Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron and model Katherine Webb: They were engaged at a restaurant in Gulf Shores, their rehearsal dinner was held at the FloraBama Yacht club, and the couple married at an Orange Beach church in July. Runner up: Gorham’s Bluff, near Pisgah in Jackson County, northeast Alabama


Best place to get muddy or play in the mud: Boggs and Boulders, Andalusia

This off-road adventure park and campground is set on more than 1,000 acres in the little town of Brooklyn south of Andalusia. The park features a spring-fed pool, caves and lakes and dry dirt trails, according to its website. Runner up: Stony Lonesome OHV Park in Cullman

Best annual event: Iron Bowl

Best place to retire: Beaches

Probably not a surprise that the beaches scored well in this category: Alabama as a whole offers several advantages for retirees, including a low overall cost of living (even the more expensive beach towns, when compared to pricier areas like Hilton Head and Boca Raton, compare favorably), a warm climate, top-quality golf and assisted living and nursing homes that cost significantly less when compared to the national averages. Runners up: Fairhope in Baldwin County (in above photo), lake areas

Best outdoor annual festival: Shrimp Festival, Gulf Shores

Held on the second weekend of October, the free Shrimp Festival draws an estimated 250,000 visitors and features more than 300 vendors. A sand sculpture contest, 10K/5K run and an “American Idol”-style singing contest for young people are all featured events, but the focus is, of course, on the shrimp and seafood, and chefs challenge each other to create the festival’s best dish. Runner up: National Peanut Festival, Dothan Alabama Living

Few contests inspire the heated passions of the annual Alabama/Auburn game, played for many years at Birmingham’s Legion Field (hence the name, a nod to Birmingham’s industrial history.) Now the game alternates between campuses, and is considered to be one of the most heated collegiate rivalries in the country. The first meeting of the two teams was in 1893. Runner up: Shrimp Festival in Gulf Shores, the World’s Longest Yard Sale along Alabama Highway 127

Best outdoor adventure destination: Gulf Shores

Again, the beaches win, with fishing, parasailing, hot air balloon rides, scuba diving and dolphin cruises. Several outfitters and vendors in Orange Beach and Gulf Shores stand ready to take you on your next adventure. Runner up: Little River Canyon, which has rappelling and rock climbing excursions, canoe and kayak rentals and hiking trails.

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Best cook-off event: Alabama Wildlife Federation Wild Game Cook-offs

Local chapters of the AWF host annual wild game cook-offs all over the state, giving backyard chefs a chance to show off their culinary skills using wild game in three divisions: fish, fowl and wild game. Winners at the local level move on to the state finals, held at Lanark Pavilion in Millbrook. Some past winning dishes: Grilled Dove Breast, Smoked Venison with Cajun Wild Rice, and Flounder Stuffed with Shrimp and Crab.

Best Alabama-grown produce: Peaches

The sweet summer fruits were an easy winner in this category. Peaches are Alabama’s leading commercial fruit, and the state ranks 18th in peach production in the U.S., according to statistics from the USDA’s National Agriculture Statistics Service. In 2012, growers produced 7 million pounds of peaches, according to the Alabama Farmers Federation. Most are produced in Chilton County. Runner up: tomatoes

Best seasoning, sauce or condiment made in Alabama: Dale’s

Its bottle proclaims that it is “delicious on all meats, fish, fowl and vegetables,” and obviously you agreed. Dale’s Seasoning was first bottled in Birmingham in 1946, according to the company’s website, as the house marinade for the steaks at Dale’s Cellar Restaurant. As the popularity of the seasoning grew, the family-owned operation began to bottle and sell it, first at local outlets and then to bigger chains. The recipe is top secret, unknown even by the employees at the Brundidge bottling plant. Runner up: Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q sauces and rubs 16 JANUARY 2015

Best Alabama dish to serve out-of-town guests: Shrimp and grits

We’re not sure that Alabama can lay claim to this popular dish -- it may have originated in the Low Country of Georgia and South Carolina -- but its popularity is undeniable. Virtually every Southern chef seems to offer his or her own spin on it, from upscale eateries to down-home fish camps. Runners up: Barbecue (including all types of barbecued meats and restaurants), fried green tomatoes


Best place to take a Sunday drive: Northeast Alabama

Counting together the responses for Little River Canyon, Lookout Mountain, Mentone and “northeast Alabama” put this scenic area over the top. Of course, even the most picturesque car trip needs a stop for legstretching and picnicking, so if you decide to take that Sunday drive, check out the Little River Canyon National Preserve, which features the 45-foot Little River Falls; not far away is DeSoto State Park, which features several of its own beautiful waterfalls and hiking trails. Runner up: Bankhead National Forest, in Lawrence and Winston counties in northwest Alabama

Best thing about living in Alabama: The people

This one wasn’t hard to predict. But we were impressed with the diversity of answers: everything from the mild weather to the state’s natural beauty to a slower pace of life all received votes. Of course, it wouldn’t be Alabama without college football showing up a close second. (And a shout-out to the vote received for Alabama Living!)

Best random roadside attraction: Peach Park, Clanton

This area is known by several names, judging from your responses: “the big peach,” “Peach Park,” “Peach Tower” and, curiously, “the big orange in Clanton.” Whatever you call it, Clanton’s big peach, just off Interstate 65 at exit 212, is a highly visible landmark: It towers 120 feet above the ground and holds 500,000 gallons of water, according to RoadsideAmerica.com. Runners up: Ave Maria Grotto in Cullman, Huntsville Space and Rocket Center

Best Alabama-made product to send home with out-oftowners: Pecans

This category was a little more difficult to tally, because some responses were generic (“socks” versus “Zkano organic cotton socks,” which are made in Fort Payne.) But the tasty nuts, grown in Alabama since the early 1900s, won by a small margin. Alabama ranks about sixth nationally in pecan production. Runners up: Conecuh sausage, peanuts JANUARY 2015 17

Best non-chain breakfast place: Waysider Restaurant in Tuscaloosa

Boasting a breakfast like grandma used to make, patrons come craving the made-fromscratch biscuits topped with red-eye gravy and other breakfast fare. Opened on Feb. 8, 1951, this out-of-the-way eatery is painted red and features plenty of Alabama football memorabilia on the walls -- and you may even see a coach or player or two. Runner up: Busy Bee Cafe, Cullman

Best historic cemetery: Magnolia Cemetery, Mobile

This historic city of the dead, shaded here and there by old oak trees, was established in 1836 on 36 acres of land in what was then outside the city limits; today, it’s in the heart of historic Mobile and contains 80,000 grave sites. Adjoining Magnolia is a national cemetery containing the graves of more than 6,000 veterans and the cemeteries of Mobile’s two Jewish congregations. Runners up: Coon Dog Cemetery in Colbert County in northwest Alabama (featured in the October 2013 Alabama Living), and Oakwood Cemetery in Montgomery (where country music icon Hank Williams is buried)

Best article, feature, photo or helpful tip you read in Alabama Living in the past 12 months: Recipes

We’re well aware of the popularity of our reader-submitted recipes each month, but we were a little surprised to see them win by such a large margin -- more than three-to-one over the next closest answer. But we’re glad to see that you also enjoy our monthly “Worth the Drive” features by Jennifer Kornegay, and “Around Alabama,” which lists events and festivals. We’re planning a similar reader opinion contest for 2015, so let us know any suggestions for categories you’d like to see! Contact us at agriffin@ areapower.com.

Orange Beach resident is contest prize winner Miranda Dodgen of Orange Beach wasn’t sure how she and been a member of Baldwin EMC since 2012. was going to pull off getting Christmas gifts for friends and Not surprisingly, many of her answers reflected her love of family last month. That is, until she got the call Alabama’s Gulf Coast. “I’ve been going to the from Alabama Living that her name was drawn beach all my life with my family,” she said. “ I as the winner from all the entries in our “Best was taught how to catch blue crabs in the surf at of Alabama” contest. a young age by my mother. It has been a favorite “You have made my day!” she exclaimed after pastime of mine ever since. One night we netted being told the news that she’d won the $500 cash 52 crabs and had a crab feast!” prize. “Thank you so very much!” At her job at the Michael Kors store at the Miranda was one of several hundred Alabama Tanger Outlet in Foley, Miranda is able to share Living readers who entered the contest, voting on her enthusiasm for the state’s beaches: “I have Miranda Dodgen categories from best place to take a selfie to best the opportunity to meet people from all over the place to get married in Alabama. “I think I’ve world on vacation on Alabama’s Gulf Coast!” told every single person I’ve encountered about this!” Miranda A graduate of Troy University, she enjoys touring Alabama’s said. “It has really made my Christmas.” historic homes and learning about Alabama’s history. – Lenore Miranda, who grew up in Ozark, has lived in Orange Beach Vickrey

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Alabama Department of Archives and History is the oldest state-funded archival agency in the country. PHOTO BY MARILYN JONES

Alabama Trivia:

One interesting fact after another By Marilyn Jones


hat do Jan. 4 and Mardi Gras have in common? Well, Jan. 4 is National Trivia Day, and the first Mardi Gras in America was held in Mobile starting in 1703. That’s 15 years before New Orleans was founded and a bit of trivia Alabamians might like to know. That’s the fun of trivia: Interesting little factoids important to some, but not always readily known by many.

sources needed to make steel. It is also the largest supplier of cast-iron and steel pipe products. In fact, Birmingham was established in 1871 at the anticipated intersection of the North & South and Alabama & Chattanooga railroads. Nearby mineral deposits of iron ore, limestone and coal made Birmingham a natural location for iron smelting.

Alabama’s famous sons and Industry and innovation daughters Just about everyone knows AlaIn 1902 Dr. Luther Leonidas Hill bama workers built the first rocket performed the first open heart surto put humans on the moon and gery in the Western Hemisphere by that Huntsville is known as the suturing a stab wound in a young rocket capital of the world, but did boy’s heart. The surgery occurred in you know the world’s first electric W.C. Handy’s home in Florence. Montgomery. streetcar system was introduced in W.C. Handy, the “father of the PHOTO COURTESY ALABAMA DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM Montgomery in 1886 and ran down blues,” was born in a log cabin, now Dexter Avenue? restored with a museum nearby, in Florence in 1873. And Alabama is the only state with all the major natural reBaseball legends Hank Aaron and Willie Mays and famed 20 JANUARY 2015


boxer Joe Louis were born in Alabama. Tallulah Bankhead, star of stage, screen and radio during the 1930s-1950s, was born in Huntsville in 1902, and singer and entertainer Nat “King” Cole was born in Montgomery in 1919. Actress Kate Jackson, author and actress Fannie Flagg, and Oscar-winning actress Louise Fletcher all hail from Birmingham, as did Betty Lou Gerson, a voice actress who brought Cruella de Vil to life in Disney’s “101 Dalmatians.” Oscar-winning actress Octavia Spencer is from Montgomery, and actor Channing Tatum is from Cullman. The author of Forrest Gump, Winston Groom, grew up in Mobile.

national wildlife refuges and two national monuments: Little River Canyon National Preserve and Russell Cave National Monument.

The Confederate flag, the “Stars and Bars,” was designed and first flown in Alabama in 1861. The Alabama state flag was authorized in 1895.

State stats Alabama became the 22nd state on Dec. 14, 1819. It is 30th in size at 52,423 square miles. Montgomery was the birthplace of the Confederate States of America and its first capital. The capital was moved from Montgomery to Richmond, Virginia, on May 24, 1861.

Share your knowledge Alabama is a state of interesting people, places and events. Thousands of little known facts are just waiting to be discovered. What unusual piece of trivia can you share with readers? Send your trivia to agriffin@areapower.com for possible inclusion in a future issue of Alabama Living. A

Mt. Cheaha is the state’s highest point above sea level.

Museum facts and finds The Alabama Department of Archives and History is the oldest state-funded archival agency in the nation. The agency was organized in 1901 and housed in the capital building until 1940 when it moved across the street to the War Memorial Building. Adolf Hitler’s typewriter survived from his mountain retreat and is exhibited at the Hall of History in Bessemer. Geography At 2,405 feet, Cheaha Mountain is Alabama’s highest point above sea level. Alabama’s geographic center is located in Chilton, a community located 12 miles southwest of Clanton. The state has four national forests, 10

Alabama’s state flag is a crimson cross of St. Andrew on a field of white.

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Worth the Drive

Southern Comfort: Traditional favorites made with the freshest ingredients By Jennifer Kornegay


hat’s in a name? At Southern Comfort in Hope Hull, of him, too. Soft shreds of yard bird come off the bones clean, a lot. The moniker is a spot-on description of what and the pepper and vinegar punch of the mayo-based condiment you’ll find inside: Southern food, including Alabama- (one of our state’s most famous claims to barbecue fame) amplistyle barbecue, and comfort, from the delicious preparations of fies the subtle flavor of the smoke-soaked meat. the dishes you grew up with to the friendly service. Other standouts include fried chicken (Tripp believes they’ve Walk past the pig logo on the front door and a sincere “Wel- got some of the best anywhere), country-fried steak, fried okra, come home!” from one or more of the wait staff greets you be- collard greens and pulled pork, which you can dress with one fore you’re quickly seated. Drinks come out fast, and if you know of several homemade barbecue sauces. The one dubbed “spicy” what you want, an attentive server will take your order in a jiffy. packs a hint of heat that plays perfectly with the sweetness. The But this is no time to rush, because while you’ll probably rec- Dirty Fries (crispy potato slivers smothered in gravy and cheese ognize everything on the menu, this is not your average meat ’n sauce) are a necessary indulgence. And Tripp’s twist on beanie three lunch place. Southwienies will spark childern Comfort’s owner hood memories. Tripp Mauldin is a clasTripp is also using his sically trained chef. The barbecued meats in some Montgomer y native refreshing ways, adding graduated from Johnson them to classics from re& Wales University’s culigions even farther south nary school in Colorado than central Alabama. and cooked in San FranTry the barbecue Cuban cisco and Napa Valley, sandwich or the barbeCalif., before returning cue chicken quesadilla. home and opening the And since no self-rerestaurant in early Nospecting Southern lunch vember 2014.  would be complete with Don’t worry. That out dessert, Tripp whips doesn’t mean he’s messup several sweet treats ing around and “fancying A tender smoked chicken quarter is drizzled with a tangy white sauce. for his guests. The baPHOTOS BY JENNIFER KORNEGAY up” your favorites; his nana pudding is everybackground mainly influences his ingredient choices. “I wanted thing you’d expect but presented with a little extra flair, nestled to do Southern staples, but I wanted to do them with the best, in a mini-Mason jar under a cloud of real whipped cream. freshest ingredients,” he said. “And to make everything from In keeping with the Southern traditions the restaurant is honscratch, here in-house.” oring with its food, Southern Comfort is a family effort; Tripp’s There are no frozen or processed foods lurking in the kitchen parents are co-owners, and his mom Morning is usually there at Southern Comfort. Sauces and dressings don’t come from a with him, serving her son’s dishes with a smile. bottle. The barbecue is smoked in the pit out back. And you can Next time you’re in need of some home cooking and the taste this attention to detail on every plate. warm fuzzy feelings that come with it, grab a table at Southern Tripp is especially proud of his barbecue, and after a few bites Comfort. You’ll be fulfilled (and filled) by the familiar dishes ofof his smoked chicken quarter with white sauce, you’ll be proud fered and elated by Tripp’s expert execution of them. A

Jennifer Kornegay travels to an out-of-the way restaurant destination in Alabama every month. She may be reached for comment at j_kornegay@ charter.net. Check out more of Jennifer’s food writing, recipes and recommendations on her blog, Chew on This at www.jenniferkornegay.com.

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For a closer look at Southern Comfort, go to alabamaliving. coop and click on “videos”

Hope Hull

Southern Comfort 210 Wasden Road, Hope Hull, AL 334-280-0012


Alabama Living

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Energy efficiency and the ‘tiny house movement’ By Thomas Kirk

A “tiny house movement” has gained national attention as some individuals are looking for extreme ways to save energy and be more efficient. But what are the factors that determine how much energy a home consumes? PHOTO BY BONEYARD STUDIOS


“tiny house movement” has gained attention nationally as a reaction to the increased construction of larger homes. Popularized by the documentary “Tiny,” a television show, and other media coverage, these homes typically measure less than 1,000 square feet – a far cry from the typical American home. In 1973, the average U.S. home measured 1,660 square feet. Since then, U.S. homes have grown by over 60 percent to reach an average size of 2,598 square feet in 2013 – despite a slight dip in 2008 through 2010. But do smaller homes actually use less energy? What are the factors that determine how much energy a house consumes? As the size of homes increases, so do the energy demands on it. There’s additional space to be heated or cooled, more lighting is required, and it’s likely that the number of appliances will increase as well. Examining only a home’s size will show a strong positive correlation between the square footage of a home and its energy consumption. To look at an extreme case, homes that measure over 6,400 square feet (the top 1 percent of homes) use two and a half times as much electricity as home sized at 1,600 square feet; but this isn’t the whole story. Other factors such as the age of the home, climate, income and behavior influence energy consumption as well. Energy Information Administration (EIA) data shows that homes built after the year 2000 use only 2 percent more energy than homes built before 2000 even though the newer homes are on average 30 percent larger and contain more electronic appliances. There are several reasons for this equilibrium in energy use despite the greater building size. First, homes are becoming more energy efficient. They are lit with CFLs and LEDs instead of in-

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candescents and use more efficient appliances. For example, an older refrigerator can use about twice as much energy as a newer model of similar capacity. Second, homes are being built with more energy-efficient features. This includes better building shells, modern windows and more insulation. Larger homes in particular are more likely to include these types of energy-saving features. These changes are due not just to technological advances but policy changes that tightened building codes and raised the minimum energy efficiency standards for appliances. Programs such as EnergyStar have helped to educate consumers about the efficiency and costsavings of their products. Lastly, more Americans are moving south to more moderate climates. This means that less energy is used on space heating, and although the southern migration has resulted in a 56 percent increase in energy used for air conditioning, it’s not enough to offset the space heating reduction. What this ultimately means is that the amount of energy a home uses is not pre-determined by its size. While moving into a tiny home may not be practical or possible -- they are often not allowed under current zoning regulations and only make up around 1 percent of homes – realize both large homes and small homes have the potential to be efficient or inefficient. Rather than moving into a tiny home to save energy, consider looking into energy-efficient retrofits and contact your electric cooperative for ways to save. A Thomas Kirk is a technical research analyst specializing in energy efficiency and renewable energy for the Cooperative Research Network (CRN), a service of the Arlington, Va.-based National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.


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Alabama Gardens

A garden of reading delights to wile away the winter


anuary may not be the best month for gardening outside, but it is a great time to curl up with some good gardening reads. If you need a little garden inspiration flavored with humor, introspection and soulfulness, check out a newly released collection of columns and essays produced by GreenPrints, “The Weeder’s Digest.” GreenPrints is a quarterly print and ejournal that took root 25 years ago when its founder, Pat Stone, left a job as a garden editor at Mother Earth News and, along with his wife Becky and a small but dedicated staff, launched GreenPrints as a little black-and-white magazine that focused on the human, not the how-to, side of gardening. Since then, GreenPrints has published stories showcasing the heart, soul and art of gardening, earned the adoration of many subscribers and won two Best Small Garden Magazine in America awards. It just published its 100th issue filled with stories from the likes of Mark Twain, fantasy writer Garth Nix and other less famous but exceptionally gifted writers.

Katie Jackson is a freelance writer and editor based in Opelika, Alabama. Contact her at katielamarjackson@ gmail.com.

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Their stories about Barbie flower fairies, hummingbirds in hand, duck-invaded gardens and many other topics are a delight and the illustrations are as beautiful as the words. To get a copy, go to www. greenprints.com or call 800-569-0602. If you’re in the mood for more literary reading, get a copy of Working the Dirt: An Anthology of Southern Poets, a collection of poems about gardening and farming edited by Alabama poet, freelance writer and educator Jennifer Horne. This lovely book actually came out in 2003 but it remains one of my go-to favorites, especially when I crave a moment of reflection or want to be inspired in my own writing and gardening. It’s available in paperback online or at local bookstores. And if you want to turn your reading time into learning time, the Alabama Cooperative Extension System has information on all things gardening, most of which is available (often at no charge) through its county offices or at www.aces. edu. A new ACES book that is only available on iBooks at the moment is also fabulous. Gardening in the South uses Master Gardener training and university research to provide detailed information, tips and tricks on successful Southern gardening, all enhanced with great illustrations and videos as well as quizzes at the end of each chapter. Search for it in the iTunes store. If you want to fill your calendar with reasons to celebrate gardening and the

January Gardening Tips  Make a year-long list of monthly

yard and garden projects to tackle.

 Clean up limbs, leaves and other trash from the garden and yard.

 Plant dormant trees and shrubs,

roses and spring-flowering bulbs.

 Sow seeds for early spring vegetables.

 Keep newly planted landscape plants watered.

 Attend gardening workshops, short courses and events.

 Look for more winter deals on

gardening and outdoor equipment.

 Test your soil.  Keep windows and houseplants clean.

 Feed the birds.  Plant a kitchen herb garden. great outdoors, check out the National Day Calendar website at http:// nationaldaycalendar.com/. Here you’ll find monthly lists of national and international celebrations, from the traditional to the quirky, such as National Weed Appreciation Day (March 28), National Water a Flower Day (May 30) and National Johnny Appleseed Day (Sept. 26). A


Around Alabama JANUARY Decatur, One Woman Quilt Show and Sale. A one-woman quilt show by award winning quilter Annette Woods Byrd will be on display at the Decatur Public Library beginning January 2. Fourteen quilts of varying sizes, colors, styles and themes will be on display until the end of the month and will be available for purchase. Quilts will be on display during the Library’s regularly scheduled hours: Mon.-Wed. 9 a.m.-8 p.m.; Thur. 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; Fri. and Sat., 9 a.m.-5p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.-5 p.m. www.decatur.lib.al.us.



Theodore, Winter Wednesdays at Bellingrath Gardens. This year’s topics will focus on Bellingrath Gardens and Home, gardening, local history and nature. Gardens admission for non-members unless otherwise : $12.50 for adults and $7.00 for children ages 5-12. Call 251-973-2217 ext.110 for reservations.


Mobile, Practical Tools and Solutions for Sustaining Family Farms Conference at the Mobile Convention Center. The 24th annual Southern SAWG conference is for serious organic and sustainable producers, farm to school participants, urban farmers or those interested in creating more vibrant community food systems. Schedule available at www.ssawg.org.


Evergreen, Conecuh County Relay for Life Kick-off Concert at the Reid State Technical College Auditorium. Featuring Chris Golden (formerly of the Oak Ridge Boys), Highway Home, the Gospel Melodies and Paul Tillman. It’s a night of bluegrass music, family-friendly country and gospel music. All tickets are general admission with a minimum donation of $10. Contact: Sharon Salter, 256-654-8783 or Terri Nobles, 251-327-8431.


Foley, Gold Coast Coin and Currency Show at the Foley Civic Center. Saturday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday 9 a.m.- 3 p.m. The show will have two categories: youth ages up to 17 and adults ages 18 and up. Visit www. foleycoinshows.com for additional information.


Muscle Shoals, The Shoals Flea Market at the North Alabama State Fair Grounds every third weekend of the month. Open Sat. 9 a.m.-7 p.m. and Sun. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. The indoor/outdoor market features crafters, antiques, collectibles, boutique apparel and more. For information, email shoalsfleamarket@aol.com or visit www.theshoalsfleamarket.com.


Greenville, Frozen Foot 5K at Confederate Park. The course is a scenic route through downtown Greenville and offers both runners and walkers a challenge to start the morning. Registration will begin at 8 a.m. with the race beginning promptly at 9 a.m. $20 Breast Cancer Awareness Registration, $25 Preregistration fee, $30 Late registration (18 and under save $5).


Dothan, Gala Art Auction and Exhibit. 188 North Park, Saturday at 6 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. Admission is $10. Call for information: 334-792-5001.


Elba, Songs and Scenes from Broadway Classics. Elba High School, 7 p.m. Ten star-struck performers arrive in the Big Apple looking for their big break on Broadway with their new-found book, “How to Succeed on Broadway.” Popular scenes and songs from Broadway include: “Legally Blonde,”“Mary Poppins,”“Mama Mia,”“Evita,”“Hello Dolly,” and more. Advanced tickets: $25 adults, $20 students; at the door: $30 adults, $23 students. For information, call 334-4062787 or visit www.CoffeeCountyArtsAlliance.com.


Opelika, The State Symphony Orchestra of Mexico at the Opelika Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 p.m. Returning for its first American tour since 2008, The State Symphony Orchestra of Mexico plays an all-Spanish program including Manuel De Falla’s shimmering masterwork for piano and orchestra, “Nights in the Gardens of Spain.” Visit www.eastalabamaarts.org for more information.


Montgomery, Judge Frank M. Johnson and the Law, Montgomery, 1961: The World the Freedom Riders Stepped Into. The Frank M. Johnson Building, 2 p.m. Join historian Jack Bass, Judge Myron H. Thompson, and attorney Peter Canfield and find out how Dr. Martin Luther King and Johnson gave “true meaning to the word justice.” Information: www.freedomridesmuseum.org.


Gulf Shores, Glow in the Park Run. Each participant will be given everything they need to glow: glow bracelet and necklace, LED finger lights, glow paints, and a race t-shirt that glows under blacklight. There will even be volunteers throwing neon powder and spraying UV glow water. Race day packet pick up and registration is 3 p.m.-5 p.m. with the race beginning at 5:45 and an after party from 6-9 p.m. For information and registration visit www.glowintheparkrun.com/gulf-shores2015.

To place an event, e-mail events@alabamaliving.coop. or visit www.alabamaliving.coop. You can also mail to Events Calendar, P.O. Box 244014, Montgomery, AL 36124; Each submission must include a contact name and phone number. Deadline is two months prior to issue date. We regret that we cannot publish every event due to space limitations.

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JANUARY 2015 29

Alabama Outdoors

New year, new waters! Try fishing new lakes for the adventure of it this year By John N. Felsher


lthough old familiar waters run do professionals quickly master new wa- tips and photos about their favorite lakes. deep with memories, many an- ters and consistently catch fish under all With a click of a mouse, anglers can glers love to fish new lakes, if for conditions? Before ever launching a boat, also view internet maps and detailed nothing else than a change of scenery. professional anglers develop a game plan. satellite photos for no cost. Viewers can “If somebody fishes every weekend Developing a game plan begins with frequently zero in on a particular shoreat the same spot with the same bait, it research. Talk to guides or anglers who line or cove to find channels, tributaries, gets old,” remarks Gary Klein, a profes- fish the chosen area regularly. Call local hidden backwaters and other places that sional bass angler. “Force yourself to try bait and tackle shops. Talk to the state might hold fish. Satellite photos might new lures and new techniques. even reveal deep holes, humps, It’s fun to do something different. sandbars and underwater strucIt’s adventure. Go, learn and push ture. Some websites even give GPS yourself. You’ll become a better coordinates for selected points. fisherman.” Using this technology, anglers can With so many good lakes and eliminate marginal waters to avoid rivers all across Alabama, anglers wasting time. don’t need to travel 3,000 miles to “Anyone can eliminate 90 pervisit an entirely different habitat cent of the water before they ever type. From any point in the state, get to the lake by knowing seaanglers can find new adventures sonal patterns and weather conafter just a short drive in any direcditions,” explains Denny Brauer, a tion. From the cold, clear trout waformer Bassmaster Classic chamters of the Sipsey Fork below Lake pion. “That means a good fishLewis Smith to the massive delta erman needs to search only 10 David Bruce of Ranger, Ga., shows off a catfish he caught while percent of the water to find that estuary near Mobile, anglers find fishing on the Alabama River at Selma. many diverse habitats and species magic one percent that fish are all across Alabama. utilizing. Then, that angler needs Professional anglers like Klein might biologist for that area. The Alabama De- only to figure out how to catch them in fish a tournament in a steaming brackish partment of Conservation and Natural that one percent of the water.” tidal delta one day, a deep glacial lake a Resources publishes good information Of course, internet browsing cannot week later and a rocky desert impound- about fishing across the state at www.out- match time spent on the water. On a large ment or swift, rain-swollen river following dooralabama.com. lake, anglers cannot possibly learn everythat. Even anglers who fish the same wa“I try to gather enough information thing they need to know in a short time. ters every weekend for years can’t possibly from local sources to know what the fish- Pick a cove, creek channel or shoreline learn everything about an area, so how ing is like,” recommends Ken Cook, a for- and study it. Remain in that area and remer Bassmaster Classic champion. “At this sist the temptation to fish all over the lake. John N. Felsher is point, I’m not interested in where to fish. I Technology and a good plan can help a freelance writer just want to know what the fishery is like. anglers find likely spots, but can’t make and photographer I want to know what to expect.” who now lives in fish bite. Find out what the locals use or Semmes, Ala. He To update an old telephone book slo- start with proven, time-tested lures and co-hosts a weekly gan, “Let your mouse do the crawling.” tactics that worked elsewhere under simioutdoors show that is syndicated to stations The internet provides an almost inex- lar conditions. Try to mimic the size or in Alabama. For more haustible source of information. Anglers color of dominant natural forage in that on the show, log on to www.gdomag.com. can find articles from local newspapers, lake at that time of year. Contact him through sporting magazines and other websites. “Keep in mind what fish should be dohis website at www. JohnNFelsher.com Many guides regularly post information, ing at that time, depending upon the sea30  JANUARY 2015


son,” Brauer advises. “Water temperature dictates which baits are most productive. Once anglers start getting bites, they can usually establish a pattern.” People wishing to explore an unfamiliar lake might book a day with a licensed charter captain. By hiring a guide, anglers avoid a lot of guesswork. Good captains keep up with fish movements and activity for their areas. Most captains provide the proper baits and equipment. Some captains even provide food and refreshments or clean the catch. Paying a guide for a day of fishing costs money, but anglers who only fish a few

Jimmy Mason, a bass pro from Rogersville, shows off two smallmouth bass he caught on an Alabama rig while fishing at Pickwick Lake near Florence. PHOTOS BY JOHN N. FELSHER

Alabama Living

times a year may actually save cash by hiring a captain instead of buying a boat. While a boat sits idle, owners must still make note and insurance payments, not to mention perform maintenance and repairs. Before fishing, boat owners buy fuel, bait, ice and other items. Add up all those expenses and anglers might buy three or four charter trips a year and still save money. Before fishing any waters, set a simple goal – just to have fun! If nothing else, a little change of scenery occasionally can’t hurt. Enjoy yourself on the water this year. A

Tables indicate peak fish and game feeding and migration times. Major periods can bracket the peak by an hour before and an hour after. Minor peaks, half-hour before and after. Adjusted for daylight savings time. a.m. p.m. Minor Major Minor Major

JAN. 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

08:01 09:16 10:16 11:01 11:31 07:01 07:31 08:16 08:46 09:31 03:16 04:01 01:31 06:46 08:46 10:01 10:31

04:01 04:46 05:16 05:46 06:31 12:01 12:46 01:16 02:01 02:31 10:01 10:46 11:31 04:01 04:46 05:16 05:46

01:16 02:16 03:16 04:01 -12:16 01:01 01:46 02:46 09:16 10:46 --12:31 01:46 02:46 03:31

09:16 10:01 10:31 11:16 04:46 05:31 06:31 07:16 08:16 03:46 04:46 06:16 07:31 08:46 09:31 10:16 10:46


11:16 11:46 -07:01 07:31 07:46 08:16 08:31 02:31 03:01 03:46 02:31 07:46 09:01 10:01 10:46 11:16 -07:01 07:31 08:01 02:16 02:46 03:16 01:31 04:16 09:16 10:01

06:01 06:31 06:46 12:16 12:46 01:16 01:46 02:01 09:01 09:31 10:01 11:01 03:46 04:16 05:01 05:31 06:01 06:31 12:31 01:01 01:46 08:31 09:01 09:31 10:16 11:31 04:31 04:46

04:16 05:01 12:16 12:46 01:16 01:46 08:01 08:46 09:46 11:46 --12:31 02:01 03:01 04:01 05:01 12:01 12:46 01:31 08:16 09:16 10:46 ---01:16 02:31

11:16 11:46 05:31 06:01 06:46 07:16 02:16 02:46 03:46 04:46 06:01 07:31 08:46 09:31 10:16 11:01 11:46 05:46 06:31 07:16 02:16 03:01 04:01 05:16 06:46 08:01 09:01 09:46

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28

JANUARY 2015 31

Alabama Literature

ALABAMA BOOKSHELF Each month, we offer a summary of recent books about Alabama people, people with Alabama ties, and/or written by Alabama authors. Let us know about any books you’ve read recently that meet those criteria by emailing us at bookshelf@alabamaliving.coop. Tinsley Harrison, M.D.: Teacher of Medicine, by James A. Pittman Jr., M.D.; NewSouth Books, January 2015; $45 Tinsley Harrison – a physician, teacher, researcher and writer – is one of the most important medical figures of the 20th century. He edited the first five editions of Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine, considered an essential medical text; he also served as the dean of three different medical schools, including the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Author Pittman studied with Harrison and spent six years interviewing him at the end of his life. Martin Luther King Jr., Heroism and African-American Literature, by Trudier Harris; University of Alabama Press, November 2014; $49.95 This book is a study of how the character and persona of King, one of the most revered figures in American history, is captured and reflected in works of African-American literature. King has been one of the strongest influences upon the creative world of generations of writers of varying political and social persuasions. The Historian Behind the History: Conversations with Southern Historians, edited by Megan L. Bever and Scott A. Suarez; University of Alabama Press, December 2014; $49.95 This collection of interviews with leading Southern historians, conducted over the course of a decade, will be of interest primarily to graduate students and professors. But the themes covered in the interviews – antebellum and African-American history, Reconstruction, civil rights, the Depression, the New Deal and Jim Crow culture, among them – may interest an audience beyond academia. The A.G. Gaston Motel in Birmingham: A Civil Rights Landmark, by Marie A. Sutton; The History Press, November 2014; $19.99 Traveling in the South in the 1950s could be difficult for AfricanAmericans, as many hotels and restaurants didn’t open their door to minorities. But in Birmingham, black entrepreneur A.G. Gaston created a first-class motel and lounge that became a symbol of pride for the community. This book chronicles its history as a headquarters for the civil rights movement and a place of rest for famous entertainers and activists. 32 JANUARY 2015

Alabama Living

JANUARY 2015  33

Soups Alabama Recipes

Cook of the month: Carissa Pittman, Age 12, Joe Wheeler EMC Harvest Delight Soup 2 pounds carrots 7 cups vegetable stock 1/4 cup powdered milk  (use powder only; do not add water) 2 large potatoes

1 11/4 1/2 1 1/2

cup green beans cups corn cup celery tablespoon cornstarch teaspoon pepper Dash of thyme

Cut the green beans and celery. Peel and slice the carrots, and peel the potatoes.  Cut the potatoes into about 3/4-inch pieces.  Steam the carrots and potatoes.    Prepare the vegetable stock. When carrots are finished steaming, put them on a cutting board.  With a fork, mash the carrots well.  In a blender, blend the mashed carrots until smooth. Pour the mashed carrots into a pot.  Add the  vegetable stock and stir.      Stir  the milk  powder and cornstarch  into the soup.  Add the green beans, corn, celery, and potatoes.  Add the pepper and thyme; mix well.  Place the soup on the stove on medium heat until thoroughly heated.  Ladle soup into bowls and serve.  Garnish with whole wheat Club Crackers if desired.

Chicken and Dumplings 3 3-4 1 3 1

quarts of water large chicken breasts tablespoon salt chicken bouillon cubes can cream of chicken

1 large can evaporated milk 1/2 stick of butter 12 large flour tortillas torn into pieces (some small and some big pieces)

Boil chicken until done and tender. Take chicken out of water; let cool and shred chicken. Put last four ingredients into water and bring to a boil. Put pieces of tortillas into boiling water, stirring often, careful to not let stick. Add shredded chicken. Add water for thinner soup or more tortillas for thicker soup. If you let it sit, it will be better. Donna Gilliam, Tombigbee EC Happy 2015! Did you make a new year’s resolution? I try to come up with something easy every year so hopefully I don’t end up doing it only for a month or so. This year I hope to limit the amount of time I spend looking at my phone/tablet at the end of the day. It’s always fun to keep up with social media, the news and emails, but I know I spend too much time on those things and I want to spend more of that time with my family. I hope you enjoy these soup and chili recipes. Thank you to our cooks who share their special recipes for us to share with our readers. Submit your recipes online at alabamaliving.coop and check us out on Facebook for updates throughout the month.

Mary Tyler Spivey is a graduate of Huntingdon College where she studied history and French but she also has a passion for great food. Contact her at recipes@alabamaliving.coop.

34 JANUARY 2015

You could win $50! Upcoming recipe themes and deadlines are: March April May

Peanut butter Cookies Mom’s Best Dish


January 15 February 15 March 15

online at alabamaliving.coop email to recipes@alabamaliving.coop mail to: Recipes, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124

Editor’s Note: Alabama Living’s recipes are submitted by our readers. They are not kitchen-tested by a professional cook or registered dietician. If you have special dietary needs, please check with your doctor or nutritionist before preparing any recipe.

Want to see recipes, feature stories, and other Alabama happenings during the month? LIke Alabama Living on facebook and don’t miss anything!


Black-Eyed Pea Gumbo 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 medium onion, chopped 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped 5 stalks celery, chopped 2 cups chicken broth 1 cup brown rice 4 15 oz. cans black-eyed peas with liquid

1 10 oz. can diced tomatoes and green chilies 1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes 1 pound sausage, cooked and cut into bite-sized pieces 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, and cook the onion, pepper, and celery until tender. Pour in the chicken broth, and mix in rice, black-eyed peas with liquid, diced tomatoes and green chilies, diced tomatoes, sausage and garlic. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes, or until rice is tender. Add water if soup is too thick.

Easy Peasy Cheesy Potato Soup 4 cups diced peeled potatoes 1 cup diced onion 1 cup diced celery (optional)

1 can cream of chicken soup 1 can of water or milk 1 can green peas (drained) 1/2 pound Velveeta cheese

Cover potatoes and onions with water and boil until tender. Add remaining ingredients and mix.  For thicker soup, dissolve 1 tablespoon cornstarch to 1/4 cup water or milk and add to soup mixture. Enjoy with cornbread or corn chips!   Mary F. Haga, Arab EC

Cynthia Rodgers, Southern Pine EC

Chicken Corn Chowder 1 tablespoon butter 1 8-oz. package sliced mushrooms 1 medium onion, chopped 2 14.5-oz. cans chicken broth (99 percent fat free) 1 16-oz. package frozen shoepeg corn or a can of shoepeg corn 2 cups cooked chicken breasts (or rotisserie chicken from the store) 1 10.75-ounce can condensed cream of chicken soup

1/2 cup orzo (found in pasta section) or use instant rice Several fresh rosemary leaves or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary 1 tablespoon sugar or sugar substitute 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon black pepper 1 cup milk 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour or cornstarch

Melt butter in a large dutch oven over medium heat; add mushrooms and onion, sauté 5 minutes or until tender. Add chicken broth and all other ingredients except milk and flour. Simmer 10 minutes or until orzo is tender. Stir together milk and flour (or cornstarch) in a small bowl until well blended. Gradually stir into chowder and simmer 5 minutes. Earnestine Pace, North Alabama EC

Shrimp Bisque 1 can cream of mushroom soup 2 cans cream of potato soup 1 can whole kernel corn, drained 1 pint half and half

4 oz. cream cheese 1 pound shrimp 1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon red pepper Tony Chachere’s seasoning salt, to taste Scallions as desired

Put all ingredients in a crockpot and cook on low for four hours. Terasa Driggers, Joe Wheeler EMC

8 Can Taco Soup 1 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed 1 15 oz. can pinto beans, drained and rinsed 1 14.5 oz. can petite diced tomatoes 1 15.25 oz. can sweet corn, drained

1 12.5 oz. can white chicken breast, drained* 1 10.75 oz. can cream of chicken soup 1 10 oz. can green enchilada sauce 1 14 oz. can chicken broth 1 packet taco seasoning

* I use shredded rotisserie chicken for a meatier soup. Mix all ingredients together in a large pot. Simmer for about 30 minutes. Serve with tortilla chips. Garnish with sour cream, cheese, cilantro or red onions. Dotty Thomas, Baldwin EMC Alabama Living

JANUARY 2015 35

Cobbler recipe wins crockpot contest


endra Lausman started using crockpots years ago when she was working full-time and raising four teenagers. Now retired, she still likes coming up with creative crockpot recipes, though she’s had to downsize the amount of food she makes. Lausman, who lives in Montgomery, won $500 in the “Crockin’ It! with Alabama Living” contest at the Alabama National Fair in October. Lausman’s Berry Delicious Crockpot Cobbler took the top honors in the field of 24 dishes, judged by a panel that included several Alabama Living staffers. Lausman says she has at least 300 cookbooks at home, and over the years each one has grown to include her handwritten notes and ideas. “I just keep experimenting until I get the taste I want.”

She didn’t expect to win, and was genuinely surprised when her name was called as the winner. “Everything that could go wrong did,” she says. But the judges like the creativity of her recipe, and the flavors of the berries meshed well with the cookie dough, which made up the dough part of the cobbler. Recipes were required to include at least one Alabama product. The magazine also sponsored “Alabama’s Best Cake” competition, which drew nine entries. Olivia Belle’s Southern Pecan Pie Cheesecake, made by Gretchen Loftin of Prattville, won first place and $125. We hope to continue our partnership with the Alabama National Fair in the coming years and will continue to share the winning recipes. – Allison Griffin

Crockin’ It with Alabama Living winning recipes Berry Delicious Crock Pot Cobbler Kendra Lausman, Montgomery First place 21 oz. strawberry pie filling 12 oz. frozen blackberries 12 oz. frozen raspberries 21 oz. blueberry pie filling 1/4 cup V8 Fusion strawberry/banana juice 1 tablespoon strawberry extract 1/4 cup Alaga Yellow Label syrup 1/2 cup cornstarch 1 16-ounce package Pillsbury sugar cookie dough Butter-flavored cooking spray Optional: fresh berries and powdered sugar for topping Spray butter-flavored cooking spray into large crockpot. Add strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries. Add pie fillings, V8 juice, strawberry extract, Alaga syrup and cornstarch. Mix well. Place sugar cookie dough over the top evenly. Cook on low for 5-6 hours until berries are thick and the topping is crispy. When cool enough to serve, garnish with fresh berries and powdered sugar. Can also serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream. 36 JANUARY 2015



Alabama’s Best Cake

Crockpot Chocolate Raspberry Mason Jar Brownies Nicole Penn, Montgomery Second place 1/2 cup butter, sliced 2 1-ounce squares unsweetened chocolate 2 eggs, beaten 2/3 cup sugar 1/4 cup Alaga Yellow Label syrup 1/3 cup + 6 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 3/4 cup all purpose flour 1/4 teaspoon baking powder 6 half-pint Mason jars Non-stick cooking spray Garnish: Fresh raspberries, whipped cream, finely chopped walnuts Melt butter and chocolate together in a saucepan on low. Remove from heat and stir in sugar, 1/3 cup of jam, vanilla and eggs. Add flour and baking powder, combining well. Divide batter among sprayed jars and add 1 teaspoon each of the remaining jam to tops of each jar. Cover each jar with foil and place in slow cooker. Pour enough water into the slow cooker until it comes about halfway up the jars. Cover and cook on high for 3 hours or until a toothpick comes out clean. Serve warm with whipping cream and fresh raspberries.

Alabama Living

Olivia Belle’s Southern pecan pie cheesecake Gretchen Loftin, Prattville First place Glenda Yarbrough, director of the fair’s Creative Living Center, congratulates the winning cooks, from left, Kendra Lausman, Nicole Penn and Dennis Itson.

Cream cheese, Havarti and corn fiesta dip Dennis Itson, Montgomery Third place

32 oz. cream cheese, softened 2 cans Rotel tomatoes 4 cans whole kernel corn, drained 8 oz. Havarti cheese 11/2 stick butter 1/2 cup Barber’s milk Golden Flake tortilla chips In a crockpot add cream cheese, Rotel, Havarti cheese, butter and corn. Start the pot on low until the key ingredients melt. Mix well, then turn on high to thicken right before serving. Add milk to taste and if it seems to thicken too quickly. Dip with Golden Flake tortilla chips.

Crust: 13/4 cup vanilla wafers, crushed 1/4 cup brown sugar 1/3 cup melted butter Pie filling: 1 cup sugar 2/3 cup light corn syrup 1/3 cup melted butter 2 eggs, beaten 11/2 cups chopped pecans 1 teaspoon pure vanilla Cheesecake: 24 ounces cream cheese, softened 11/4 cup brown sugar 2 tablespoons plain flour 4 eggs, beaten 2/3 cup heavy cream 1 teaspoon pure vanilla Garnish: Caramel Toasted pecans Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For the crust, combine wafers and brown sugar. Add butter, using a fork to blend. Press into a 10-inch spring cake pan, pushing crust mixture up sides of pan. Place on baking sheet and bake for 6 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. Turn oven down to 325 degrees. To make the pie filling, combine those ingredients above in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then turn down to simmer, stirring constantly for 8-10 minutes to thicken. Pour into crust. To make the cheesecake, slowly mix cream cheese till creamy. Add sugar and blend. Add eggs one at a time blending after each. Add flour and blend. Stir in heavy cream and vanilla, then pour on top of pie mixture. Bake for one hour on 325 degrees and do not open the oven. Turn off oven, leaving cake in for an additional hour. Remove from oven and let cool completely. Place in fridge overnight. Remove from pan. Drizzle with caramel and sprinkle with toasted pecans. JANUARY 2015  37

Market Place Miscellaneous

How To Place a Line Ad in Marketplace

Closing Deadlines (in our office:

March 2015 – January 25 April 2015 – February 25 May 2015 – March 25

ORANGE BEACH CONDO, 3BR/3BA; 2,000 SQ.FT.; beautifully decorated; gorgeous waterfront view; boat slips available; great rates - Owner rented (251)604-5226

APPALACHIAN TRAIL – CABINS BY THE TRAIL IN the Georgia Mountains – 3000’ above sea level, snowy winters, cool summers, inexpensive rates – (800)284-6866, www.bloodmountain.com

FINANCIAL HELP LINES FOR AL FAMILIES BANKRUPTCY ADVICE FOR FREE - (877) 933-1139 MORTGAGE RELIEF HELP LINE - (888) 216-4173 STUDENT LOAN RELIEF LINE - (888) 694-8235 DEBT RELIEF NON-PROFIT LINE - (888) 779-4272 Numbers provided by - www.careconnectusa.org A Public Benefit Organization

CABINS – BANKHEAD NATIONAL FOREST - $75 / Night Up – (205)913-1164 or highergroundcabins3@gmail.com

PIGEON FORGE 4 BEDROOM HOUSE – VRBO RENTAL 556992 – (256)717-8694, (256)717-9112

METAL ROOFING $1.79/LINFT – FACTORY DIRECT! 1st quality, 40yr Warranty, Energy Star rated. (price subject to change) - (706) 226-2739

WEISS LAKE, CENTRE, AL – BAY SPRINGS COUNTRY INN & CAMPGROUND – Great place for vacation, reunions, meetings, retreats and birthday parties. Many amenities included.  Check us out at www.bayspringscountryinn.com, (256)927-3618. 

18X21 CARPORT $695 INSTALLED – OTHER SIZES available - (706) 226-2739

WALL BEDS OF ALABAMA / SOLID WOOD & LOG FURNITURE / HANDCRAFTED AMISH CASKETS $1,599 / ALABAMA MATTRESS OUTLET – SHOWROOM Collinsville, AL – Custom Built / Factory Direct - (256)490-4025, www. andyswallbeds.com, www.alabamamattressoutlet. com AERMOTOR WATER PUMPING WINDMILLS – WINDMILL PARTS – DECORATIVE WINDMILLS – CUSTOM BUILT WINDMILL TOWERS - CALL Windpower (256)638-4399 or (256)638-2352 KEEP POND WATER CLEAN AND FISH HEALTHY with our aeration systems and pond supplies. Windmill Electric and Fountain Aerators. Windpower (256)638-4399, (256)899-3850 FREE BOOKS / DVDS – SOON GOVERNMENT WILL enforce the “Mark” of the beast as church and state unite! Let Bible reveal. The Bible Says, POB 99, Lenoir City, TN 37771 – thebiblesaystruth@yahoo. com, (888)211-1715 USED PORTABLE SAWMILLS – BUY / SELL. CALL Sawmill Exchange (800)459-2148 or 713-sawmill. USA & Canada – www.sawmillexchange.com LUMBER FOR SALE: CIRCULAR SAW RED & WHITE Oak, Hickory, Ash - $1.20 BFT; Heart Pine - $5.00 BFT – 5” Treated Round: One Side Flat Fence Post 8 FT Long $9.50 each - Loring White (334)782-3636 (Tallapoosa)

Business Opportunities PIANO TUNING PAYS – LEARN WITH AMERICAN Tuning School home-study course – (800)497-9793

Vacation Rentals GULF SHORES RENTAL– GREAT RATES! (256)4904025, (256)523-5154 OR WWW. gulfshoresrentals.us TOURIST CABINS FOR RENT BY OWNER - (865) 712-7633. Year Round Specials GULF SHORES COTTAGE – WATERFRONT, 2 / 1, pet friendly – Rates and Calendar online http:// www.vrbo.com/152418 GULF SHORES PLANTATION - GULF VIEW, BEACH side, 2 bedrooms / 2 baths, no smoking / no pets. Owner rates (205)339-3850

GATLINBURG – DOWNTOWN LUXURY CREEKSIDE CONDO – 2BR / 2BA, sleeps 6 – aubie12@ centurytel.net, (256)599-5552

PIGEON FORGE, TN: 2BR/2BA, HOT TUB, AIR hockey, fireplace, swimming pool, creek – (251)3631973, www.mylittlebitofheaven.com GATLINBURG TOWNHOUSE ON BASKINS CREEK! GREAT RATES! 4BR/3BA, short walk downtown attractions! (205)333-9585, hhideaway401@aol. com PANAMA CITY BEACH CONDO – OWNER RENTAL – 2BR / 2BA, wireless internet, just remodeled inside and outside – (334)790-0000, jamesrny0703@comcast.net, www.theroneycondo. com GATLINBURG, TN – FOND MEMORIES START HERE in our chalet – Great vacation area for all seasons – Two queen beds, full kitchen, 1 bath, Jacuzzi, deck with grill – 3 Night Special - Call (866)316-3255, Look for us on FACEBOOK / billshideaway WWW.HIDEAWAYPROP.COM – CABINS, PIGEON FORGE, TN: Peaceful, convenient location, owner rates – (251)649-3344, (251)649-4049 HELEN GA CABIN FOR RENT – SLEEPS 2-6, 2.5 baths, fireplace, Jacuzzi, washer/dryer – (251)9482918, www.homeaway.com/101769, email jmccracken@gulftel.com DISNEY – 15 MIN: 5BR / 3BA, PRIVATE POOL – WWW.ORLANDOVACATIONOASIS.COM, (251)504-5756 PIGEON FORGE, TN – 3 BEDROOM, 2 BATH HOUSE – Walking distance to parkway, light# 1 - $85.00 / night – (256)309-7873, (256)590-8758 GULF SHORES GULF FRONT – 1BR / 1BA, Seacrest Condo – WiFi, King Bed, Hall Bunks, pictures and rates vrbo# 435534 – amariewisener@ gmail.com, (256)352-5721 BEAUTIFUL PANAMA CITY BEACH CONDO – SLEEPS 6 COMFORTABLY, MANY AMENITIES onsite – Joy (256)878-0211 CABIN IN MENTONE – 2/2, BROW VIEW, HOTTUB – FOR RENT $100 / NIGHT OR SALE $199,000 – (706)767-0177 GULF SHORES PLANTATION CONDOS – BEACHVIEW SLEEPS 6, BEACHFRONT SLEEPS 4 – (251)223-9248

FT. WALTON BEACH HOUSE – 3BR / 2BA – BEST buy at the Beach – (205)566-0892, mailady96@ yahoo.com MENTONE, AL – LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN – BILLIARD table, Jacuzzi, spacious home, sleeps 14 – www. duskdowningheights.com, (850)766-5042, (850)661-0678.  

Real Estate Sales NICE 3 BR, 2 BATH FISHING, HUNTING & RETIREMENT HOME on river in Dallas Co. - Recently remodeled with hard wood floors & ceramic tile, metal roof and new A/C unit, large high lot - E-mail smerrill05@bellsouth.net, Cell (850)582-7633 Home (850)939-2054

Travel CARIBBEAN CRUISES AT THE LOWEST PRICE – (256)974-0500 OR (800)726-0954

Musical Notes PLAY GOSPEL SONGS BY EAR - 10 LESSONS $12.95. “LEARN GOSPEL MUSIC”. Chording, runs, fills - $12.95 Both $24. Davidsons, 6727AR Metcalf, Shawnee Missions, Kansas 66204 – (913)262-4982 PIANOS TUNED, REPAIRED, REFINISHED. BOX 171, Coy, AL 36435. 334-337-4503

Education WWW.2HOMESCHOOL.ORG – OPEN YEAR Round K-12 enrollment. Contact Dr. Cerny (256)653-2593 BECOME AN ORDAINED MINISTER correspondence study. Founded in 1988. Free info. Ministers for Christ Outreach, 7558 West Thunderbird Road, Ste. 1 - #114, Peoria, Arizona 85381. http://www.ordination.org FREE BIBLE CORRESPONDENCE COURSE – WRITE to P.O. Box 52, Trinity, AL, 35673

Critters CHIHUAHUA PUPPIES. REGISTERED, guaranteed healthy, raised indoors in loving home, vet records and references. (256)796-2893

Fruits / Nuts / Berries GROW MUSCADINES AND BLACKBERRIES , HALF dollar size – We offer over 200 varieties of Fruit and Nut Trees plus Vines and Berry Plants . Free color catalog. 1-800-733-0324. Ison’s Nursery, P.O. Box 190, Brooks, GA 30205 Since 1934 www.isons. com

Ads are $1.75 per word with a 10 word minimum and are on a prepaid basis; Telephone numbers, email addresses and websites are considered 1 word each. Ads will not be taken over the phone. You may email your ad to hdutton@areapower.com; or call (800)410-2737 ask for Heather for pricing.; We accept checks, money orders and all major credit cards. Mail ad submission along with a check or money order made payable to ALABAMA LIVING, P.O. Box 244014, Montgomery, AL 36124 – Attn: Classifieds.

38  JANUARY 2015





24285 State Hwy 59, Robertsdale, AL 36567 Contact Danny Dyer or Philip Mitchell @ 251-947-1944 www.affordabletruck.com • affordable@gulftel.com

CECIL PIGG STEEL TRUSS, INC. P.O. BOX 389, ADDISON, AL 35540 cecilpiggsteeltrussal.com

30’ x 40’ x 10’ - $5,52000 40’ x 60’ x 12’ - $9,12000

Prices are subject to change • Top and Gable only • Price includes material, labor and delivery within 75 miles

WE SELL: Steel Trusses • Hay Barns Lumber • Equipment Sheds Building Material Packages Painted Metal • Work Shops Insulation • Kneebraces Galvalume Metal


256-747-8178 • FAX: 256-747-8760

Alabama Living

JANUARY 2015 39

Send your questions to: James Dulley

Consumer Wise

Alabama Living 6906 Royalgreen Dr. Cincinnati, OH 45244

You can also reach Dulley online at: www.dulley.com

New touch-control faucets save water and energy


My kitchen faucet has a very slow drip and the finish is worn. I want to replace it with one that is attractive and convenient to use. I often wash dishes by hand, so what is the most efficient design to purchase?

the water via the handle, the water flow can be controlled with the wave or touch of a hand. By not having to adjust the handle each time, water is not wasted by readjusting the temperature. This provides significant water and energy savings – particularly when rinsing during food preparation and when washing dishes by hand. For most people, using a standard faucet conMost people think of a kitchen faucet as just a simple sumes more water and energy when washing dishes by hand than valve to turn water on or off and to set the water tem- when running a properly loaded efficient dishwasher. With the perature. But the proper selection of a kitchen faucet touch-control feature, careful hand washing can be more efficient has a significant impact on water and energy savings, not to men- than the dishwasher. tion convenience, health and kitchen decor. Another advantage of this feature is the faucet handle is touched You should never ignore a dripping faucet, even if it less often with dirty hands, so the attractive finish lasts longer. seems to be leaking cold water. The leak Also, with all the health concerns today may actually be coming from the hot waabout diseases from cross contamination ter side, but it feels cold by the time it gets of foods, touching the handle less is a real to the faucet and drips out. Even a slow plus. Very few people wash the handle each leak from the hot water line can add up to time they have touched it. substantial energy costs over time. Keep in Of the two no-hands technologies, I use mind, heating water is the greatest home the type that senses touch from your body energy consumer following general home (hand, forearm, elbow, etc.). It detects the heating and cooling. slight electrical change from your touch to Although you will not see it directly on open or close a special valve. For example, your electric bill, using cold water conwhen I am rinsing dishes, I can hold several plates in each hand and just tap anysumes energy too. It requires a great deal A pull-down sprayer with a pause button of energy to purify, pump and treat. allows you to conveniently stop the water flow where on the faucet fixture with my elbow Two primary factors affecting water for savings. to start the water flow and stop it when and energy efficiency of a kitchen fauPHOTO COURTESY OF MOEN they are rinsed. cet are the maximum flow rate and the The other technology has a proximity convenience of controlling the flow and temperature. For many sensor on the top and in the front of the faucet neck. Waving a years, two-handle (hot and cold) controls were popular. Today, hand over the top sensor triggers the solenoid. This does require one-handle kitchen faucets are almost always used. In addition to one free hand. The sensor on the front of the neck senses hands defining your style and decor, the size and shape of the faucet may when they are in a typical hand-washing position. impact your overall water consumption. Tall spouts with a pull-down sprayer are convenient to use and The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has a listing for also result in savings. They provide a professional look, which is plumbing products, similar in concept to EnergyStar for appli- popular in today’s kitchens. Depending upon the under-cabinet ances, called WaterSense. To qualify for a WaterSense label, the clearance, select the tallest one you can. Some are as tall as one faucet must be 20 percent more efficient than standard products in foot. You will appreciate the height when you have to rinse a large a category. The industry standard is 2.2 gpm (gallons per minute) platter or fill a large pot. maximum water flow rate. Look for the WaterSense label. The pull-down sprayer increases the functionality of the faucet. The most recent, convenient and efficient feature for kitchen If you use the sprayer feature option often, select one with a pause faucets is the touch-control feature. Without having to turn off button. This allows you to stop the flow temporarily when moving utensils or rinsing various foods without having to wave over or touch the fixture. The following companies offer efficient kitchen faucets: American Standard, 800-442-1902, www.americanstandard-us.com; Delta Faucet, 800-345-3358, www.deltafaucet.com; Kohler, 800James Dulley 456-4537, www.kohler.com; Moen, 800-289-6636, www.moen. is a nationally syndicated engineering consultant com; and Pfister, 800-732-8238, www.pfisterfaucets.com. A based in Cincinnati.


40  JANUARY 2015


Starting at

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Alabama Living

JANUARY 2015 41

We Did Our Part We’re participating with other members in CAEC’s peak shaving program. Simply put, we’re allowing our co-op to delay the re-heating cycle on our water heaters. It’s a win-win program – we still have hot water when we need it, and the co-op avoids paying peaktime power costs. If enough of us join this effort, we can have a positive effect on our future rates – will you join us? The peak shaving device for your electric water heater is free, and will be installed by a licensed electrician at no cost to you.

----------------------------------------------------------------------Yes, I agree to do my part by joining CAEC’s peak shaving program. Name:_______________________________________Phone #(s):__________________________________ Address:____________________________________City:______________________St:______Zip:_______ Account #:_________________________________________ Email:____________________________________________


Number & Size(s) of Water Heater(s):____________________


Mail form to: Central Alabama Electric Cooperative, P.O. Box 681570, Prattville, AL 36068

Alabama Living |


Recipe for Efficiency from CAEC Pipe Wrap


ccording to the Energy Information Administration, water heating accounts for approximately 18 percent of your home's energy usage. To help save energy dollars, having an efficient water heater is only one part of the equation. You may be losing heat in the

distribution piping from your water heater (even an energy efficient one) to your home’s faucets. Wrapping the exposed pipes from your water heater will aid in keeping the heat in the pipes and will help save you money. Below are instructions on how to properly install pipe wrap.

Ingredients (supplies):

Utensils (tools):

Pipe Wrap


Duct Tape

Tape Measure

4. Open a slit in the insulation and slide over 1.

Remove any old pipe insulation.

the pipe. Continue steps 3 and 4 until the entire exposed pipe is covered.

2. Measure the

circumference of your existing pipe to determine what size pipe insulation you need. The measurement may be listed on the pipe itself.

3. Measure the length of pipe insulation that you need and cut to the proper length.

5. To secure insulation in place, tape the length of the slit.


Our Sources Say

Horse Trader


rowing up in a rural area in the 1960s, Horse Trader was one of the best reputations a person could have. By the time I came along, Horse Traders didn’t trade horses any longer, but they had good business instincts and were accomplished at trading, buying or selling many things. Horse Traders were good businessmen, understood the value of different things, had a great sense of human nature and knew how to structure a favorable deal. Horse Traders knew what was happening in their communities – what was needed and what was surplus. Horse Traders were both respected and feared. They were sought to help with deals and avoided when they were on the other side. You always wanted to know whose side a Horse Trader was on. Horse Traders were rarely out traded because they knew exactly what they wanted from a deal and knew what people on the other side could and would give. Horse Traders lived by their wits, abilities and hard work. They rarely lost a trade and never gave one away, because they were trading out of their own pockets. Just a few weeks agoLast November, U.S. President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping announced an agreement, described by the White House as historic, to limit carbon dioxide emissions. China, the world’s largest emitter of carbon dioxide, pledged to reach peak global carbon dioxide emissions and to reduce its reliance on non-fossil based fuels to 20 percent of its total energy by 2030. The U.S. agreed to start now and by 2025 reduce its carbon dioxide emissions 26 to 28 percent from 2005 levels. However, the agreement contains no benchmarks, no enforcement actions nor any sanctions for non-compliance. The U.S., which has reduced a greater amount of greenhouse gas emissions than any other country since 2005, agreed to more than double its carbon dioxide emissions reductions by 2025 and China agreed to continue to increase its carbon dioxide emissions year after year until 2030. China’s carbon dioxide emission graph line is almost vertical upward. The U.S.’s carbon dioxide emission line – already declining – turns more downward until 2025 and beyond. Supporters of the agreement point to China’s commitment to expand its non-fossil energy reliance to 20 percent by 2030 as a

Gary Smith is President and CEO of PowerSouth Energy Cooperative.

44 JANUARY 2015

significant concession. However, China continues to add a new coal plant without environmental controls every two weeks, and that pattern will continue through 2030. It is also adding nuclear power that will result in 20 percent non-carbon energy production by 2030, regardless of the agreement. Columnist Charles Krauthammer, who has long supported a comprehensive, global agreement to reduce carbon emissions, calls it the most one-sided deal since Manhattan Island was sold for $24 in 1625. Even if it is not that bad, the U.S. bargain is certainly not the work of a Horse Trader. Krauthammer writes, “…the radical environmental unilateralism advocated by climate alarmists would be not just economic suicide but economic suicide without a purpose. It would do nothing to reduce atmospheric carbon dioxide so long as China, India and other developing nations more than make up for our cuts with their huge and increasing carbon emissions.” While the substance of the agreement is suspect, the process behind the agreement is worse. What if the U.S. radically cuts its carbon emissions between now and 2025, and in 2030 China finds it uneconomic or inconvenient to meet its agreement? Apparently, we call them out for breaking a promise of a president long past, but there are no economic sanctions, and our economy is still damaged, our standard of living is lowered, and the cost of everything we produce is higher. The economic costs of U.S. carbon emission reduction are real, regardless of arguments by environmentalists. Energy costs are a part of every product and service. Increasing the cost of energy will simply increase the cost of every product and service we produce and use. Any other conclusion simply is illogical and wrong. The environmental benefits are speculative at best, nonexistent at worst. The Horse Traders I knew growing up would be ashamed of the U.S.’ agreement. Maybe President Obama is not a Horse Trader. Maybe President Xi is a real Horse Trader and traded us out of our pants. Maybe President Obama wasn’t trading with the Chinese at all. Maybe he is just using the agreement with China to set up a trade with all of us – the U.S. citizens – that would box us in and force us to reduce our carbon emissions regardless of what China does in 2030 and regardless of what it does to our economy, to our livelihoods, to our standard of living or to our children’s futures. If that is the trade, then President Obama is a real Horse Trader, and you always need to know which side of the deal a Horse Trader is on. I hope you have a good month. A


Market Place

Alabama Living

JANUARY 2015  45

Alabama Snapshots 2


1 7



Submit Your Images! MARCH THEME: “I’m in the band”



Photos, Alabama Living, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL, 36124 RULES: Alabama Living will pay $10 for photos that best match our theme of the month. Photos may also be published on our website at www.alabamaliving.coop. Alabama Living is not responsible for lost or damaged photos. DEADLINE FOR MARCH: January 31

46 JANUARY 2015

My Snowman 1. Olaf from the movie “Frozen.” SUBMITTED BY Madie Oliver, Fyffe. 2. Rick, Will Franklin, John David and Brenda. SUBMITTED BY Ricky Welch, Vinemont. 3. Shannah’ s frosty friend. SUBMITTED BY Hannah Bice, Vinegar Bend. 4. SUBMITTED BY Samantha Goodson, Foley.

5. Employees at Cullman Electric Cooperative. SUBMITTED BY Brian Lacy, Cullman. 6. Snow Bull. SUBMITTED BY Glenda Pigg, Addison. 7. Presley and Chloe’s sand snowman on Orange Beach. SUBMITTED BY Lori Hancock, Sylvania. www.alabamaliving.coop

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