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Making the Right Decisions for our Future


very day we make decisions of varying importance as they regard our family, business, finances and even politics, to name a few. This year we will have to make yet another major choice concerning the future leadership of our nation – the upcoming 57th quadrennial U.S. Presidential election, which will be held Nov. 6, 2012. The 112th Congress ended its first session much the way it started, struggling to resolve economic and fiscal issues that dominated legislative action and left the government at the brink of shutting down. Targeted bills on clean energy, renewable energy standards, nuclear generation, energy efficiency, electric vehicle technology and cyber security came to light, but none reached floor votes. And it’s highly unlikely that energy policy bills will pass this year in the partisan atmosphere of the elections. During this year there will probably be heated debates over how to find a balance among responsible uses of resources, guaranteeing a reliable supply of power and keeping electric bills affordable. It’s hard to predict the future, but one

thing seems certain: added government regulations increase the cost of doing business, which in turn, impacts the consumer’s cost. While CAEC is committed to keeping members informed about policy changes that will impact your electric bill, I encourage you to stay engaged and focused on industry topics by reading Alabama Living, because throughout this year, we will feature articles on candidate discussions regarding energy. In fact, we start on the adjacent page with a feature on climate change. I also encourage you to reach your own conclusions by researching the candidates and their views on energy policy and any proposed legislation that will ultimately affect you, the consumer. In other words, don’t be swayed without verifiable facts. So as we begin a new year and the national discussion on energy continues, you have an opportunity to become more involved in influencing our elected officials to make the right decisions when it comes to the future of reliable and affordable electricity. d

Tom Stackhouse, President/CEO

YOUR BOARD Chairman Chase Riddle, Prattville Vice Chairman Jimmie Harrison, Jr., Maplesville


Patsy M. Holmes, Wetumpka

Terry Mitchell, Stewartville

lo c at ion s Prattville Headquarters 1802 U.S. Hwy. 31 North (334) 365-6762/(800) 545-5735 Outage Hotline: (800) 619-5460

Secretary/Treasurer Ruby Neeley, Jemison

David A. Kelley, Sr., Rockford

Clanton Office 1601 7th St. North Rockford Office U.S. Highway 231

C. Milton Johnson, Statesville

Van Smith, Billingsley

Wetumpka Office 637 Coosa River Pkwy.

Mark Presnell, Sr., Wetumpka

Charles Byrd, Deatsville

CAEC Mailing Address: P.O. Box 681570 Prattville, AL 36068

| JANUARY 2012 | Alabama Living

Energy Issues:




limate change is one of the fundamental issues in current political energy debates. On one side of the argument, the belief is that human activity is a significant cause of climate change, and therefore, drastic and expensive carbon reduction measures should be enacted to decrease that effect. On the other side, the argument is that while human activity may contribute to carbon emissions (CO2), it is not the main cause and the money/effort spent to reduce CO2 emissions will not change the temperature enough to notice – meaning the endeavors are not worth the cost.

Methane is released during the production and transport of coal, natural gas, oil, as well as from decay of organic waste in landfills and from livestock and some agricultural practices. Although water vapor is the most abundant greenhouse gas, its atmospheric concentration is not directly affected by human activity.

3. What do scientists think about climate change? Scientists agree that greenhouse gases warm the Earth and are accumulating in the Earth’s atmosphere. However, there is considerable disparity in scientists’ findings about the impacts of greenhouse gases on the Earth’s climate.

The question then becomes: what is climate change and how does it affect you as an end user of electricity? Climate Change: The Top Questions…Answered

1. What are climate and climate change?

Climate refers to the average weather— temperature and precipitation, among other variables—over a long period of time. The Earth’s climate is always changing, and natural climatic changes may occur over seasons, decades and centuries. A summer drought is an example of climate change on a shorter time scale.

2. What are greenhouse gases and how are

they produced? Greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide, methane and water vapor, are chemical compounds that trap heat from the sun in the Earth’s atmosphere. This is known as the greenhouse effect, the natural phenomenon that warms the Earth’s surface. Carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere when forests and fossil fuels, such as oil, natural gas and coal, are burned.

4. What does climate change have to do

with me as an end user of electricity? While the largest source of carbon emissions is naturally occurring, generating electricity is the single largest source of manmade carbon dioxide emissions in the world. If additional measures are taken to reduce CO2 emissions in the U.S., then the cost you pay for power will increase – simply put, regulations raise costs.

While engaged with the Presidential election this year, listen closely to where the candidates stand on energy issues and make sure their goals for energy match yours. As for electric cooperatives, we are urging lawmakers and candidates to keep in mind that electric power is not a luxury – it's a necessity. Maintaining the affordability and reliability of electricity is the principle against which electric cooperatives will judge all climate change and energy legislation. d

Alabama Living | JANUARY 2012 |


2012 Board Election Timeline March 27 Trustees appoint Nominating Committee (Article IV, Section 4.05 of Member Bylaws). April 12 Nominating Committee meets (Article IV, Section 4.05). May 11 Nominating Committee posts slate of nominees for Districts 3, 7 and 8 at all CAEC customer service centers and on CAEC’s website, (Article IV, Section 4.05). May 22 Nominations by petition must be received by 4:30 p.m. (Article IV, Section 4.05). June All nominations by petition will be verified and posted at CAEC customer service centers and our website, (Article III, Section 3.03). July Alabama Living magazine will include all candidates names and the mail-in ballot. August Magazine will include CAEC’s 2011 Annual Report. If you choose to vote at Annual Meeting, please bring your registration form to the meeting. August 3 Deadline for mail-in ballot to be postmarked (Article III, Section 3.03). August 10 Annual Meeting, Prattville headquarters, U.S. Hwy. 31, north of Prattville. (4 p.m. registration, 6:30 p.m. business session) Election results will be announced.

High School Seniors: CAEC Scholarship Forms Available!


ollege scholarship applications are now available to high school seniors graduating this spring. Two $500 scholarships will be awared by the Electric Cooperative Foundation, Inc. (ECF), which provides scholarships for post-secondary institutions. Applicants must be dependents of CAEC members. The scholarship will be paid by ECF directly to the educational institution for credit to the student’s account. Applications are available at, any of our service centers or by calling (334) 351-2213 or 1-800-545-5735, ext. 2213 to have an application mailed to you.

Deadline is March 16

CAEC Offices will be closed Jan. 16 for the Martin Luther King/Robert E. Lee Holiday 6

| JANUARY 2012 | Alabama Living

Safety at Home . . . with Darren—

Finding a

Qualified Electrician Throughout the year, Darren Maddox, CAEC’s Training and Safety Coordinator, will share safety advice for your home. Maddox is responsible for overseeing the co-op’s company-wide safety program.


t’s natural to assume that when we walk into a room and flip a switch, the light will instantly illuminate. But what do you do when your lights don’t come on? Most of us would call an electrician, and finding a qualified electrician is important for any electrical job; ranging from the smallest installation of a new light fixture to the complete rewiring of a house. Working with electricity can be very dangerous and you want to make sure your electrician is experienced and certified for your own safety and the protection of your family. Faulty wiring poses several hazards, especially a potential fire. Like many other contractors, electricians specialize in a specific field. Some do construction sites, others go out only on service calls and some focus on commercial property work. Electricians who concentrate in remodeling have mastered techniques for wiring existing homes and additions, such as snaking wires through finished walls, assessing the capacity of existing circuits and evaluating whether to install an additional service panel (where the circuit breakers are located) to handle increased power demands.

Although you can assume a certain level of competency when an electrician shows you his/ her state license, there are two levels of proficiency to consider. A master electrician has passed a standardized test and has at least two years of experience. This type of electrician is knowledgeable of the National Electrical Code and its modifications. Areas of expertise lie in planning, designing, installing and maintaining an electrical system for a project. A journeyman electrician is one who has not qualified for a master’s license, but is licensed by the state, and by law cannot design systems but can install wiring and equipment. Some states, including Alabama, require journeymen electricians to work with a master electrician. For recommended electricians, you can check with your local homebuilders’ association or call (800) 745-4222 or an electrical-supply business in the area. And when you do decide on an electrician, be sure to see a copy of his/her state license and proof of insurance, making sure both are current. In addition, check references concerning previous jobs. Identifying a qualified electrician to address your specific electrical needs may be difficult, but in the end it is worth the effort – having peace of mind that your family and home are safe. d

CAEC Rate Information Access + Distribution + Charge Charge/kWh

Wholesale Power





Small Power Service




Small Commercial




Rates are designed to recover the cost of purchasing wholesale power, operating expenses and a margin level required by our lenders.

CAEC and its wholesale power generation partner, PowerSouth, have been able to keep rates relatively stable over the past couple of years. PowerSouth, through its long-term fuel purchase agreements, has averted sharp increases in generation fuel costs while CAEC has utilized best practices and technology to gain productivity efficiencies. These efforts, combined, will allow CAEC to maintain your current rate as 2012 begins. On page 8, read about how you can partner with CAEC and PowerSouth to help further cost savings.

CAEC’s Peak Shaving Program—

Impacting Wholesale Power Cost Will Benefit Members


he cost of electricity can fluctuate dependHow does the program work? ing on many factors, including how many people use power at the same time each day, • Let CAEC know you want to participate in such as in the mornings when everyone is getting the free Peak Shaving Program. Call (800) ready for work or school and in the afternoons 545-5735, ext. 2118 or fill out the form on when families return home. This high usage page 34 of this magazine and mail it in. of electricity during certain hours of the day is • Those who participate also qualify for a water known as “peak demand” hours. heater rebate. During this peak demand when electric con• The PSD is installed by a licensed electrician sumers collectively use the most electricity, it genat no cost to you. erally causes the cost of electricity to be higher. • You still have hot water when you need it; To help offset some of that cost, CAEC offers a the reheating process is just delayed to offPeak Shaving Program to members that impacts peak times. CAEC’s wholesale power Understanding base load, intermediate load and peak load rate by shaving peak CAEC has a fiveenergy use. year goal of having Implemented Oct. 5,000 water heater 1, 2007, the program PSDs installed; and currently targets water with your participaheaters, which use aption, we can achieve proximately 14 percent this objective. With of a home’s annual the PSD installaelectricity usage. A tions to date, CAEC’s peak shaving device wholesale power (PSD) is installed for a costs have already member’s electric wabeen offset by more ter heater and reduces than $400,000. energy usage during Other cooperatives peak times by delayof PowerSouth (our ing the reheating cycle wholesale power to non-peak times. provider) are parYou still have hot ticipating in the peak water when you need shaving program as it while helping to rewell, and the overall duce our peak energy goal is to have 50,000 needs – which cost millions of dollars to fulfill. water heaters in the program by the year 2016, The objective of the Peak Shaving Program is possibly eliminating the need to build one peaksimple – if CAEC’s system energy usage can be re- ing plant, which can cost at least $200 million! duced during peak times, then we can lower the If you have questions about CAEC’s peak shavimpact of our wholesale power cost. Peak energy ing program or would like to help us reach our can cost two to three times more to produce than goal by signing up, call (800) 545-5735, ext. 2118 off peak power, but this program offers a way or (334) 351-2118. You can also fill out the form to manage electricity use at the most expensive on page 34 in the back of this magazine and mail times. Keeping CAEC’s wholesale power costs it in or drop it by one of our service centers. d down helps keep rates stable for all our members.


| JANUARY 2012 | Alabama Living

Spot Light

In January

January 8

January 11

Football in Mobile

Tour D’Italia Cooking

Sun Belt Conference champion Arkansas State and the Mid-American Conference champion Northern Illinois will compete in the Bowl Jan. 8 in Mobile. Kick-off will be 8 p.m. at Ladd-Pebbles Stadium. january 10

Navigating by the stars

A two-hour class will be held Jan. 10 in Fort Payne with a basic introduction to navigation by the stars. Learn how to navigate without the use of a compass or GPS with the same rules used for almost six thousand years. Three-person minimum. Meet at True Adventure Sports Training Center. Class fee is $20 per person.
For more information, call 256-997-9957.

For more Alabama Events, visit page 29.

Led by Chef de Cuisine Miguel Figueroa of the Ariccia Italian Trattoria & Bar in Auburn, the Tour D’Italia cooking classes will highlight traditional Italian foods from different regions of the country. Attendees will get hands-on experience working with the Ariccia chefs and will learn how to prepare a variety of Italian dishes. Attendees will receive a take-away basket containing fresh pasta, basil pesto (made with basil from the Ariccia herb garden), Ariccia’s traditional tomato sauce, a small block of cheese from the featured region, and a signature Ariccia apron. Classes are $100 per person and attendees will be able to sample their creations. To reserve a cooking class, please call Hayley Grimes at 334-321-3179. Reservations are required because space is limited.

Support Our Troops Taxpayers can demonstrate support through the Alabama Military Support Foundation for Guardsmen and Reservists by making a contribution by using a check-off box on the bottom of the Alabama State tax form. The mission of the foundation is to educate employers on the active role played in the defense of our nation by Guardsmen and Reservists, and to inform them on their legal rights and responsibilities. Funds donated to the foundation will be used to educate and recognize outstanding employers who go above and beyond to support employees serving in the Guard and Reserve.

Alabama Living

january 2012  9

Special to Alabama Living


Year of Living Cooperatively Alabama’s electric co-ops join a global celebration of memberowned businesses during the International Year of Cooperatives


s it possible to change the way people eat a fruit? Could cheese unite communities? Can electricity transform the future of a country? It’s possible... with a little cooperation. The United Nations General Assembly designated 2012 as International Year of Cooperatives (IYC 2012), under the banner “Cooperative Enterprises Build a Better World.” The 10  JANUARY january 2012

resolution recognizes the vital role cooperatives – democratically governed businesses that operate on an at-cost, not-for-profit basis – play in the economic and social wellbeing of communities and encourages countries to foster cooperative development as a way to generate local wealth, employment, and marketplace competition. “At a time when folks are losing faith in big corporations, International Year of Cooperatives 2012 offers us a great opportunity to showcase the many ways the consumer-owned and member-controlled cooperative form of business benefits a community,” says Alabama Rural Electric Association CEO Fred Braswell. “It gives us a perfect venue to contrast how we differ from profit-driven companies.”

Co-ops are everywhere

were only eaten by the slice. By the end of World War I, however, Sunkist’s “Drink an Orange” push had increased the average per capita serving size from one-half an orange to almost three.

If variety is the spice of life, co-ops are a zesty bunch. Every day, more than 29,200 cooperatives supply essential products and services to American consumers, touching our This pioneering co-op tradition continues in many ways lives in almost every way. Tomorrow at breakfast, check your morning paper. Many today: • Credit unions fought off the destructive cycle of payday of the articles may be labeled “Associated Press” or “AP.” loans by creating salary advance loans with low rates Those stories were written by individual reporters but disthat placed part of the borrowing into a savings actributed by a cooperative news organization. count– helping members escape a cycle of debt. If your breakfast includes freshly squeezed orange juice, • Marketing cooperatives added food nutrition labels to it may be from a Sunkist product. Sunkist is a cooperative products long before it was required by federal law. formed by California and Arizona citrus growers. • Electric cooperatives lead the way in smart grid imIn fact, one out of every four Americans claims memplementation. Close to half have installed advanced bership in some type of cooperative, including 91 million metering infrastructure (AMI), with 30 percent integratserved by credit unions and 42 million connected to more ing AMI or automated meter than 900 electric cooperatives reading devices with various in 47 states. One of every four Americans claims software applications, such as Although many in number, cooperatives differ from membership in some type of cooperative outage management and geographic information systems. “typical” businesses in one big way: they are organized for the benefit of their members, not single owners or stockholders. Some electric co-ops are already sponsoring joint coop“Co-ops are established when the for-profit, investorerative initiatives. For nearly three decades electric coopowned commercial sector fails to meet a need, either due to eratives in the Yellowhammer State have linked arms with price or availability of goods and services,” explains Brasthe Alabama Council of Cooperatives to hold a three-day well. “The co-op business model works in housing, utilities, statewide youth leadership conference, called Co-op Boot and in both rural and urban settings. Co-ops empower Camp, for more than 50 high school students. people to take control over their own economic destinies. Last July the event was chaired by Chellie Phillips, com“When you’re a member of a co-op, you have a real say munications and marketing coordinator for Troy-headin the direction of that business. That’s critical – it helps the quartered South Alabama Electric Cooperative, and Laura co-op rapidly respond to changing conditions. As an exThornton, community relations specialist at Ozark-based ample, a number of electric co-ops have branched out into Pea River Electric Cooperative. other pursuits beyond electricity to meet pressing consumer “We highlight all of the different kinds of cooperatives and community requirements.” found in our state: banking, farming, dairy, and electric,”

Group studies

On the cutting edge Odds are you have orange juice in your refrigerator. But before a 1916 advertising campaign by Sunkist, oranges

says Phillips. “Our biggest challenge is incorporating the co-op message while keeping students engaged and active. We strive to balance educational aspects with recreation and fun times.” A

America’s 29,200 cooperative enterprises build a better world by: • Providing 2 million jobs with annual sales of $652 billion. • More than 900 electric co-ops deliver electricity to 42 million consumers in 47 states. • Electric co-ops own and maintain 42 percent of the nation’s electric distribution lines that cover 75 percent of America’s landmass.

• Two million farmers are members of nearly 3,000 farmer-owned cooperatives. • More than 7,500 credit unions offer financial services to 91 million consumers. • Approximately 233 million people are served by insurance companies organized as or closely affiliated with co-ops.

• About 50,000 families use cooperative day-care centers. • Roughly 1.2 million Americans in 31 states are served by 260 telephone cooperatives. • More than 1.2 million families live in housing owned and operated through cooperative associations. A

Alabama Living

january 2012  11 JANUARY

Hands-On Education Alabama teachers explore the great outdoors through Legacy workshops


By David Haynes or most of my adult life I’ve explored this beautiful state of Alabama, first with cameras, canoes and kayaks, and later by motorcycle. From the Gulf beaches in the south to the Appalachian foothills in the north, and I thought I knew the Heart of Dixie fairly well. Until last fall when I discovered just how little I really knew about the place we call home. I was invited to attend the “Down Under in North Alabama” workshop sponsored by Legacy, Partners in Environmental Education, where I saw Alabama in a completely new perspective: from below ground in the caves of Jackson County. The workshop is one of several presented each year by Legacy, where teachers from around the state learn by doing, seeing and touching their environment, with thoughtful instruction from top experts in their fields. The goal is for these teachers to bring the lessons learned back to their classrooms, and help to make environmental subjects come to life for their students. The site for this workshop was Estillfork in the northeast corner of the state, just a stone’s throw south of the Alabama-Tennessee state line. This area

12  JANUARY 2012

of the state is home to one of the largest concentrations of underground caverns in the world. Those of us in the workshop would learn about these magnificent natural features from recognized experts on everything from cave-dwelling bats to the geological forces that set in motion the process that over millions of years created the caverns. A safety team of caving enthusiasts from the area were also were involved to ensure the inexperienced participants (like me) didn’t hurt themselves. An hour after arriving the workshop began in earnest with classroom lectures from Legacy Program Director Toni Bruner, bat expert Vicky Beckham Smith and earth sciences guru Jim Lacefield. Cavers Randall Blackwood and Sabrina

Simon gave a brief talk about safety gear and the caves the group would visit later in the four-day workshop. Lacefield, who along with his wife, Fay, are both longtime educators, operate their own nature preserve near Tuscumbia – Cane Creek Canyon. Lacefield’s book “Lost Worlds in Alabama Rocks” is recognized as the definitive guide to the state’s dim and distant geologic past. He explained that when he was a high school teacher with a master’s degree in biology, he had only a cursory grasp of Alabama’s geology. But when he found himself as “the” science department at his school, he had to expand his geology knowledge. “Everything I could find was about Continued on Page 16

Alabama Living

january 2012  13


Legacy Teacher Workshop S c h e d u l e

Mouth of the South: The Mobile-Tensaw Delta

June 3-6 - Dauphin Island Sea Lab, Dauphin Island Immerse yourself in the Mobile-Tensaw Delta as you explore the bays, coastal forests, estuaries, watersheds, wetlands, and diverse wildlife that make up this unique environment.

From the Mountains to the Gulf

June 18 – June 24 – A Journey Across the Great State of Alabama Three leading scientific experts, Dr Jim Lacefield (Lost Worlds in Alabama Rocks), Dr Bill Deutsch (Alabama Water Watch and AU) and Dr George Cline (JSU), will guide 20 teachers throughout the state of Alabama, sharing their collective knowledge of the waters, geology, flora and fauna to help teachers make connections for their students back at home.

Left, experienced cavers accompanied the group. Below, unfurling the Legacy banner

Left and above, workshop participants learn simple climbing skills.

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Exploring Alabama’s Grand Canyon

July 10 – 13 – Desoto State Park, Fort Payne Explore the natural wonder of Alabama’s Little River Canyon by navigating unfamiliar wilderness, paddling Terrapin Creek, hiking and other canyon-specific activities.

Fascinating Flora & Fauna

July 18 – 20 – Camp McDowell Environmental Center, Nauvoo Explore the beauty of Alabama’s flora and fauna and learn about native and invasive plants, tree identification, organic gardening and composting, sustainable agriculture, native wildlife and outdoor classrooms.

Down Under in North Alabama

Sept. 21-24 – Estill Fork Join spelunking experts on an exciting adventure exploring caves and learn about the biodiversity of North Alabama’s karst topography from one of Alabama’s leading geologists Dr. Jim Lacefield. All Legacy workshops require a nonrefundable application. Applications can be downloaded from the Legacy Website at Contact Toni Bruner at 1-800-240-5115 or for more information.

Below, Program Director Toni Bruner

Jim Lacefield lectures extensively during the workshop

Alabama Living

january 2012  15

Lacefield holds class inside

A young cave bat

Hands-on learning

Continued from Page 24

cal reef inhabitants millions of years old. Each one required only a quick glimpse from Lacefield to identify. Later in the day, after lunch at nearby Cathedral Caverns, another developed cave now operated as a state park, we donned helmets and other gear we were told to bring to the workshop to explore Stephens Gap, an absolutely gorgeous vertical shaft cavern nearly 150 feet deep. After a half-mile hike we came to two entrances into the cave. Cavers Sabrina Simon, Michelle Edwards and Randall Blackwood rigged rappelling ropes to descend from the higher, vertical shaft entrance. However, we mere mortals went in through a sec-

a mist pierced by their helmet lights. It was a view of an Alabama scenic wonder I’d never seen or even considered previously. I learned later that one of the cavers, Sabrina, actually had held her wedding inside the cave. The couple exchanged vows on a pedestal-like rock halfway down the shaft. Amazing! I think everyone in the workshop was as wowed by this experience as me. Legacy Program Director Toni Bruner, a human dynamo with an adventuresome spirit, made her first rappelling descent there, even stopping to unfurl a large banner showing the “Get the Tag” Legacy license plate, sales of which help to fund the group’s workshops and other projects. At dinner that evening everyone was still buzzing about what we’d seen during the day. The highlight of the evening was a slide show featuring dramatic cave photography by Sabrina and fellow caver Nathan Williams. The following two days workshop participants explored other wild caves and took a tour of Cathedral Caverns, where the opening to the cave is large enough to drive a tractor-trailer through. Legacy’s workshops are free to Alabama educators accepted after making application to attend. The group also sponsors a variety of other environmental education efforts, including the annual EnviroBowl, a question and answer competition for high school teams, grants for educators as well as a wealth of instructional materials. Funding comes primarily from the sale of Alabama’s “Protect Our Environment” license tag. Other money comes from the partnership program, donations, corporate sponsors, in-kind donations, grants, and special events. A

the Grand Canyon or somewhere else far away, not Alabama,” he says. So he began an intense and lifelong study of Alabama’s geological origins to better help his students relate to their home state. This would become the genesis for his book. It was not until he was with Fay collecting fossils, however, that something clicked in him to make the link between a time millions of years ago and what we see in Alabama today. “When I held that fossil in my hand, could feel it, it became real,” he tells us. Lacefield explains that eons ago what is now Alabama had been a shallow tropical sea. Millions of years of corals living, dying and depositing their skeletons on the seabed is where the limestone of north Alabama originated. The unique blend of limestone and other rock, as well as the location of Alabama as continents collided and wrinkled the earth’s crust, is the reason why valleys and mountains here look as they do. The characteristic of these limestone deposits to be eroded slowly by water is why so many caverns are located in this part of the world. Immediately after the classroom session and a quick lunch, the group loaded up for a trip to Russell Cave National Monument, a developed cave operated by the National Park Service. There we learned that this cave has provided shelter for humans for nearly 9,000 years, which makes it one of the longest and most complete archaeological records in the country. Day two started with a fossil dig at, of all places, a busy U.S. Highway 72 at a point where the road cuts through a mountain. Almost immediately workshop participants began finding remnants of the state’s prehistoric past where limestone, exposed to rainwater erosion, released fossils of corals and other tropi16  january 2012

Fossils found along the roadside

ond entry point to the side that required only a careful scramble over an inclined boulder field to a ledge about midway into the pit. This entrance we were told was actually created when the roof of the cave collapsed thousands of years ago. Although we wore helmets, boots and headlights, this cave was never completely dark as light filtered in beautifully from the two large entrances. From the midpoint ledge I was able to capture dramatic photos of cavers dangling like spiders on a web from below. Behind them waterfalls rushed, creating

For information on Legacy and its workshops or other activities, visit

Alabama Living

january 2012  17

Consumer Wise

A Clean Fireplace Professional inspections and regular maintenance can prevent chimney fires – and save lives

This illustration shows the common problems with masonry chimneys

James Dulley is a nationally syndicated engineering consultant based in Cincinnati.

18  january 2012


I use my masonry fireplace often during winter to cut my utility bills. The draft seemed to be getting weaker. What chimney problems should I look for when I inspect it and how can I reduce creosote? Tens of thousands of chimney fires occur every year due to creosote buildup and other problems with chimneys. In many cases, the entire house ends up burning down and many lives are lost. These thousands of chimney fires result in as much as $200 million in property losses each year. Since you have noticed reduced draft up the chimney, schedule an appointment with a professional chimney cleaner. If you are lucky as I was when my fireplace demonstrated the same draft problems, the screening in the chimney cap was just clogged with soot. This blocked the air flow up the chimney. Just tapping the screening with a rubber mallet was enough to knock the soot loose. I later replaced the chimney cap with one with a more open mesh. If you are not as lucky, there may have already been a creosote fire inside your chimney. The heat from the fire can cause the tile liner to crack and fall from the masonry wall. When this happens, the broken tile may restrict the air flow up the chimney reducing the draft. You should be able to see a broken loose tile when looking down the chimney with a bright light. A chimney fire can also cause the creosote to puff up. It expands and feels somewhat like plastic cooler foam. If you can run a brush down the chimney, some of this puffed creosote may fall down into the firebox. If you find either a broken tile or puffed creosote, your chimney will definitely need a professional cleaning and inspection with a camera. If repairs are needed, get estimates from several chimney maintenance


companies. In my own case, one chimney company found puffed creosote and claimed the tiles were also loose. They gave me a quote of $7,000 to repair my chimney. Another company cleaned and inspected the chimney with a camera, but found no broken tiles. For $200 total, they also sealed the chimney crown and my fireplace has worked fine for years now. There are some things you can do to reduce creosote buildup. First, use wellseasoned wood and do not try to choke off the combustion air too much to extend the burn time. Special fireplace logs are available which contain chemicals to reduce creosote formation in the chimney. Using these periodically can help keep the chimney clean. You can clean the chimney yourself on occasion if you do not mind getting a little dirty. This does not, however, eliminate the need for a professional inspection. A local chimney supply store should carry a brush to fit your chimney. Always wear a high-quality breathing mask so you do not inhale the fine dust particles. Seal the fireplace opening into the room with plastic film and duct tape. Also, put a large drop cloth on the floor in front of the hearth. No matter how well you try to seal it, some black dust seems to always get through. Go up on the roof and run the chimney brush up and down many times. Wear a safety harness and tie yourself to the chimney when on the roof and always have someone nearby to call for help if needed. It might be overkill, but Continued on Page 33

Send your questions to: James Dulley Alabama Living 6906 Royalgreen Dr. Cincinnati, OH 45244

You can also reach Dulley online at

Alabama Living

january 2012  19

Power Plants

A Green 2012 Start your year with a month-by-month checklist of garden chores By Katie Jackson


new gardening year has begun and, following the suggestion of one of our readers, I’m starting 2012 off with an organizational theme: A month-by-month checklist of garden chores along with ways to find more extensive to-do lists just for Alabama. January may be the toughest month for avid gardeners who are held hostage by winter weather. Overcome that sense of aimlessness by planning for the coming year (or years, if you’re a long-range planner) and choosing seeds and plants from catalogues for the spring. It’s also a fine time to plant trees, shrubs and roses and to test the soil in your lawn and garden areas. February, also a hard month for gardeners because it often taunts us with warm bouts of weather, can still be productive, especially on those warmer days. Many shrubs can be pruned this month and it’s a good month for planting strawberries, starting spring vegetable seeds in cold frames and getting garden beds ready for the coming year. As March blows in, the gardening pace picks up. Continue to prepare garden soil, adding nutrients and organic matter based on your soil test recommendations. Begin planting spring vegetables once the threat of a hard freeze is past. It’s a good time to start fertilizing lawns, trees and some shrubs. It’s a good time to start weeding and watching for insect and disease problems. April is the month to prune those spring-flowering shrubs, but only after they have finished blooming! It’s also the time to divide many tender perennial plants and begin planting in earnest many spring and summer vegetables. May may be the month when irrigating becomes important, so keep an eye on lawns and gardens to ensure they are getting enough moisture. Continue to fertilize lawns and garden plots but make sure

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you don’t over-use fertilizer and follow those soil test results to make sure you are applying the proper amounts. Keep planting those summer vegetable crops as well. June is a busy month with lots of upkeep chores, such as mowing, weeding and watering. Finish planting most of those summer vegetables in the garden and keep a close eye on roses as they start to bloom and watch for insect and disease problems that may begin to crop up.

July should be a rewarding month of harvesting some of those summer crops, interspersed with lawn care, weeding and deadheading flowers so they will keep blooming throughout the season. Try to keep cool in the process! August is a great month for planting irises and starting seed for fall crops such as collards, broccoli and Irish potatoes. Harvesting of summer vegetable crops continues this month. Try to harvest early in the morning and it may be time to start taking out spent vegetable plants and thinking ahead to the fall garden.

Katie Jackson is associate editor for the Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station. Contact her at

September is the month to put transplants for fall crops in the ground and prune roses, fruit and nut trees and shrubs. It is also a great time to divide bulbs and start collecting seed catalogues for the coming year as well as take stock of how this year’s garden has grown and what you may want to do differently next year. October offers a chance to clean-up gardens, landscapes and orchards and is the month to start seed for those leafy greens (turnips, for example) and put out onion sets. As leaves begin to fall it is also a chance to add to compost piles and make leaf mold. And this is also another great time to soil test, so you’ll have results in time to add amendments to your soil. November marks the beginning of the winter tree and shrub planting season and to continue the planting of spring-blooming bulbs. Add mulch around landscape plants, prepare lawn equipment for winter storage and bring in any potted plants that can’t take winter weather. Which brings us to December, another great month for planting (and giving) spring-blooming bulbs, shrubs, trees, roses and shrubs. It’s also the time to sow seed for lettuce and cabbage in cold frames. For more detailed lists of seasonal chores check out the book “Month-byMonth Gardening In Alabama” by Bob Polomski (edited by Southeast garden expert Felder Rushing). A concise to-do list is also available through the Alabama Cooperative Extension System’s Alabama Gardener’s Calendar, which can be found at ANR-0047.pdf. You can also do a Web search for information but keep in mind that broad searches may land you on a site that is not sensitive to Alabama’s specific needs, so make sure you use tips targeted to our state. A

Garden Tips: January 3 If a warm snap has caused your spring bulbs to send up green shoots, mulch these to protect them from future freezes. 3 Feed the birds! 3 Plant apples, peaches, grapes and pears as well as other shrubs and trees. 3 Apply dormant sprays and prune most deciduous trees and shrubs. 3 Clean the foliage of houseplants with a damp cloth or by running them under a water tap. Keep an eye out for signs of insects on houseplants and treat as needed. 3 Set out cabbage plants this month and plant hardy annuals as well. 3 Plant spring-flowering bulbs. 3 Keep newly planted shrubs and trees (even those planted last fall), well watered, especially if the weather is dry. 3 Turn your compost heap.

Alabama Living

january 2012  21

Safe @ Home


Ground fault circuit interrupters could save your home and life By Michael Kelley

A GFCI receptacle fits into a standard outlet box and protects against ground faults for whatever is plugged into the outlet and outlets “down stream” in the circuit.

Michael Kelley is a certified manager of Safety & Loss Control for the Alabama Rural Electric Association.

22  january 2012


ertain things go together well, like peanut butter and jelly, but some things don’t go together well at all – like electricity and water. To help keep you safe in areas where the two might meet, such as in bathrooms, basements and the outdoors, make sure you have protection through ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs). GFCIs can provide protection against shock from an electrified appliance, equipment in contact with water, and from a damaged or defective appliance. GFCIs are inexpensive electrical devices that can be installed into a home’s electrical system or built into a power cord to protect against electrical shocks. A GFCI constantly monitors the flow of electricity through a circuit and will shut the circuit down if it senses a groundfault. The Consumer Protection Safety Commission (CPSC) defines a ground-fault as an unintentional electrical path between a power source and a grounded surface. Under normal conditions, current flows in a circuit, traveling from the source, through the device it operates and then back to the source. If an electrified appliance or piece of equipment contacts water or is damaged or defective and is no longer protected from unintended contact, your body could provide a path to the ground for the electrical current. This could cause shocks, burns, or electrocution.

Ground fault circuit interrupters come in several different forms: w Receptacle – this fits into a standard outlet box and protects against ground faults for whatever is plugged into the outlet and outlets “down stream” in the circuit. Consumers with adequate knowledge can install this type of GFCI or have a qualified electrician install it. Many homes now have plastic drains and water pipes. If you’re installing a GFCI near a sink, make sure it is grounded to insure proper function. w Portable – these are designed for locations where there is not a permanent GFCI installed. Some plug into the receptacle, and devices can then be plugged into the GFCI. Another type has the GFCI circuitry built into an extension cord. Both types plug into an outlet like any corded device and require no installation. w Circuit breaker – a circuit breaker with a built-in GFCI can be installed in a panel box to add protection to the circuits it supplies. This type of GFCI requires installation by an electrician. If GFCIs are not already installed in your home, contact a qualified electrician to install them in the following locations: w Bathroom; w Kitchen; w Garage; w Laundry room; w Outdoors; w Crawl spaces. a

Send your questions to:

Home Rules Alabama Living 340 TechnaCenter Dr. Montgomery, AL 36117 334-215-2732

Alabama Living

january 2012  23

Outdoor Spirit

A Snipe Hunt? Really? No joke: Snipe hunting is the real deal – and challenging, too By Alan White


ne of my favorite nieces was only about 7 years old and I was a teenager when we convinced her to go “snipe hunting” one night. Joanne inherited every ounce of Irish blood that ever coursed through the veins of my ancestors. She not only inherited her share of it, she took most of her siblings’ share of Irish temperament too. That’s probably why, even though she’s now 37 and has a degree in environmental science from Australia, we still talk about that night. Her face still gets as red as a boiled shrimp when

Alan White is publisher of Great Days Outdoors magazine. To learn more, or call 800-597-6828.

24  january 2012

she’s reminded of the prank. Her eyes get that glazed-over look and you can almost see faint wisps of smoke coming from her ears. Everybody should know what I’m talking about, especially if you were raised in the South. Snipe hunting is a prank played on the young or even perhaps on our slower Yankee friends where you send someone out in the woods at night with a sack and instruct them to hold it open, make certain noises, and wait for the snipe to run blindly into the sack. The unfortunate victim is left in the woods for as long as it takes for them to figure out it was a hoax. They usually come back angry. It was years later that I learned that indeed, a creature actually exists called a snipe. And it’s a bird not only worth learning about, but great fun to hunt. Common snipe, formerly known as Wilson’s snipe, are migratory and abundant. They breed in Canada and the northern United States. Common snipe migrate to marshes and soggy crop fields across the South each winter. They arrive on the Gulf Coast by midOctober and stay until April. They are small birds weighing only a few ounces. In the Mobile-Tensaw Delta, hunters can be seen walking across mud flats in line abreast from one another, spread out of shotgun range, in search of these speedy flyers. Hunting equipment is simple. It requires only a reliable scattergun with improved cylinder or open choke, a pocket full of No. 8 or 9 shot shells, and rubber boots. Snipe can be found in soggy marshes and wet meadows throughout Alabama. They thrive in damp soybean fields and Continued on Page 33

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 03:46 10:16 - - 05:46 16 01:01 11:01 - - 07:16 17 06:16 03:31 12:01 08:16 18 08:16 04:31 01:16 09:16 19 09:46 05:16 02:16 10:16 20 10:31 05:46 03:16 10:46 21 11:16 06:16 04:16 11:31 22 - - 06:46 12:01 05:01 23 07:16 12:01 12:31 05:46 24 07:31 12:46 01:01 06:31 25 08:01 01:16 01:46 07:01 26 08:16 01:31 07:46 02:16 27 08:46 02:01 08:31 03:01 28 02:16 09:01 09:31 03:46 29 02:46 09:31 11:16 04:46 30 02:31 09:46 - - 06:16 31 - - 10:31 - - 07:31 FEB. 1 - - 11:46 - - 8:31 2 9:01 5:16 1:16 9:16 3 9:46 5:16 2:31 10:01 4 10:31 5:31 3:16 10:46 5 11:01 6:01 4:16 11:16 6 11:31 6:16 5:01 11:46 7 - - 6:31 12:16 5:46 8 7:01 12:16 12:46 6:31 9 7:31 1:01 1:31 7:16 10 7:46 1:31 8:16 2:01 11 2:01 8:16 9:16 3:01 12 2:31 8:46 10:46 4:01 13 3:16 9:16 - - 5:16 14 1:31 10:01 - - 6:46 15 3:46 11:01 - - 8:01 16 8:46 4:31 1:01 9:16 17 9:46 5:01 2:31 10:01 18 10:31 5:16 3:31 10:46 19 11:01 5:46 4:31 11:16 20 11:31 6:01 5:01 11:46 21 - - 6:31 12:01 5:46 22 6:46 12:16 12:46 6:31 23 7:01 12:46 7:01 1:16 24 7:16 1:16 7:46 1:46 25 1:31 7:46 8:31 2:16 26 1:46 8:01 9:16 2:46 27 2:01 8:16 10:31 3:46 28 2:16 8:31 - - 4:46 29 - - 9:01 - - 6:16

Alabama Living

january 2012  25

Alabama Recipes

Going Vegetarian

Cook of the Month Greek Veggie Pitas

Dowe Foreman, Sand Mountain EC 1 lb. water packed extra firm tofu (such as NaSoya). Freeze tofu overnight, thaw, rinse and drain. Squeeze moisture out with hands, then place between flat weave towels (like a flour sack) and squeeze until most of the moisture is gone. Cut into small cubes. Place in large bowl. Add: 2 cups broccoli cut in small pieces In smaller bowl combine: ½ cup olive oil 1½ teaspoons salt 3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 cup thinly sliced red onion 3 cloves garlic finely minced

1½ tablespoons sweet basil 1 tablespoons oregano

Mix thoroughly then pour over salad and toss. Chill overnight. Before serving add: 2 cups chopped roma ½ can green ripe olives tomatoes (app. 5) ½ cup crumbled feta cheese 1 pack whole-wheat pitas Cut pitas in half, toast lightly, open pita (so it won’t close as it cools) and fill with salad. Enjoy! I love veggies so much I almost forget to prepare a meat with them. It drives my husband nuts. He loves a traditional meat and three, but veggie plates are enough for me! I wouldn’t say I was a vegetarian, though, because I do love a great steak every now and then. This month we are featuring different vegetable recipes so I hope you get some inspiration to make a new dish for the new year. I want to remind everyone how to enter our recipe contest: First, legibly type or print out your recipe including the ingredient list, directions, and any notes or tips. Be sure to include the name of your cooperative and contact information. Sometimes I might have a question about a recipe so please include your telephone number, as well. We are blessed with so many contributions to our recipe section through the year, and I want to thank you for your participation. Your recipes are great and we love sharing them with our readers so keep on submitting your favorites. Recipes P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124 Or email: 26  january 2012

Spinach Spaghetti (A Peruvian recipe)

2 8-ounce packages Athenos brand Chunk Traditional Feta Cheese  1 11-ounce package baby spinach 1 5-ounce can evaporated milk

1 package fresh sweet basil Salt Walnuts Vegetable oil Angel hair or vermicelli cooked noodles

In blender add evaporated milk, and 1/2 package of feta cheese cut into chunks. Blend until smooth. Add 1/2 package of spinach and continue to blend until smooth. Keep adding 1/2 packages of feta cheese in chunks (while blender is running), the remaining 1/2 of spinach, handful of walnuts, 16-18 basil leaves (include big and small),  5 dashes of salt and blend until smooth. Heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in medium saucepan on medium-low then add sauce. Cook on medium-low for about 20 minutes, stirring often, until sauce is dark green in color. Do not overheat or it will curdle. Top cooked noodles with sauce. Carol Zambrano, Baldwin EMC

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.

Egg Roll Utopia Finely chop: 1 small head of cabbage 1 cup of fresh broccoli 1 bell pepper 1/4 of a white onion or 4-5 pearl onions 1/2 cup of artichoke hearts 1/4 of a cucumber 2 medium carrots 3 strips of wakame or other sea vegetable (optional) 2 tablespoons of chives or green onions

1 tablespoon fresh dill 1 teaspoon parsley 1 teaspoon tarragon 1 teaspoon ginger 1 teaspoon cumin 1 teaspoon mustard powder Salt & pepper to taste 1 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder (optional) 1 package of egg roll wrappers

Combine all ingredients except egg roll wrappers in large mixing bowl. Fill each wrapper with approximately 4 tablespoons of mixture, close wrapper according to directions on package. Fill as many rolls as desired for your meal and freeze leftover mixture. Heat enough oil to cover the bottom of a heavy Dutch oven  or skillet and cook until golden on bottom and turn, repeating until all sides are golden brown and transfer to paper  towel-lined cookie sheet to remove excess oil. Serve warm with soy sauce for dipping if desired. Optional: Add 1/4 to 1/2 cup cooked chopped chicken or tuna to mixture and follow all other directions.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Jasmine Goodlett, Cullman EC

Marinated Carrots

1 lb. pkg. carrots, thinly sliced 1 cup cooking oil 1 large bell pepper, sliced 1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce 1 medium onion, sliced

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 3/4 cup cider vinegar 1 teaspoon mustard 1 cup sugar Salt and pepper to taste

3 butternut squash, peeled, cut in half and seeded 4 tablespoons olive oil 1 medium,yellow onion, diced 1 tablespoon fresh, grated ginger

3 cloves garlic, minced 1 teaspoon salt 4 cups vegetable stock 1 tablespoon maple syrup Juice of 1 or 2 limes, to taste

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Peel squash with a potato peeler, then cut in half and remove seeds with a spoon. Coat halves with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and place cut side down on non-stick or parchment lined rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until squash are easily pierced with a fork. When squash are about 15 minutes from being done, sauté onions in remaining olive oil or about 10 minutes. Add ginger, garlic and salt and sauté for about 2 more minutes. When squash are ready, puree in a blender or food processor with broth and onions until smooth. Return mixture to a pot and heat through, add maple syrup, lime juice and serve. Serves 6. Donna Frazier,Tallapoosa River EC

Fried Okra

Peel and thinly slice carrots; boil for 5 minutes in salt water or until tender. Drain. Blend together the cooking oil, vinegar, mustard, tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, salt and pepper in a sauce pan over low heat until mixture is steaming hot.  Layer in a bowl the carrots, bell pepper and onion rings. Pour sauce over vegetables and store covered in refrigerator for 24 hours before serving.

Joe Davis, Baldwin EMC

Becky Rodgers, Covington EC

Alabama Living

1 quart okra, chopped 1 medium potato, diced 1 quart oil

½ teaspoon salt ¼ cup flour ¼ cup corn meal

Mix together the okra and diced potato. Add salt and flour and mix well; add the corn meal mix to the mixture. Heat oil and fry the mixture until well done.

Want to see the Cook of the Month recipe before the magazine gets to your door? Become a fan of Alabama Living on facebook.

january 2012  27

Spaghetti with Ricotta, Lemon and Spinach 1 pound spaghetti 1 cup whole milk ricotta 2 tablespoons olive oil 1½ grated lemon zest 1 ⁄8 teaspoon nutmeg

1 5-ounce bag baby spinach

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add spaghetti and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. In a bowl, stir together ricotta, olive oil, lemon zest and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper. Drain spaghetti, reserving 1 cup cooking water. Return pasta to pot and stir in ricotta mixture, spinach and ½ cup pasta cooking water. Toss well, adding more pasta cooking water 1 tablespoon at a time, if necessary. Serve immediately. Instead of spinach, try escarole, which has a slightly bitter flavor and more crunch than spinach. Chop, wash thoroughly, pat dry with paper towels and sauté in 1 tablespoon olive oil until it releases its water and then add to the paste. Cook’s note: You can use frozen spinach, if you prefer. Thaw a 10-ounce box, squeeze greens dry and add to the recipe as directed.

Warm Winter Lentil Soup

1 bag lentils, washed 1 small onion, diced 3 celery stalks, diced 3 carrots, diced

2 cloves garlic, diced 3 teaspoons olive oil 1 jar pizza sauce

Dice onion, celery, carrots and garlic and sauté in 3 teaspoons olive oil. Add pizza sauce and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer 3 hours until tender. Kimberly Lee,Wiregrass EC

Norma Jean Roberts,Tombigbee EC

Turnips in Dijon Sauce

2 medium turnips, peeled and sliced 1 medium potato, peeled and diced 1 carrot, diced 1 onion, diced

1 stalk celery, diced ½ cup mayonnaise ½ cup Dijon mustard 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice Freshly ground pepper

Steam the vegetables for 10 minutes or until tender. Combine the mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, lemon juice and pepper in a small saucepan and heat gently. Add the vegetables to the sauce and stir to coat the vegetables. Serve immediately. Maxine Day, Covington EC

You could win $50! If your recipe is chosen as the cook-of-the-month recipe, we’ll send you a check for $50!

Upcoming recipe themes and deadlines are: March Hot Off the Grill January 15 April Apple Dishes February 15 May Strawberries March 15

Please send all submissions to: Recipe Editor P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124 or e-mail to: recipes@areapower. coop. Be sure to include your address, phone number and the name of your cooperative. 28  january 2012

Cheesy Spinach Pasta Pie

1 (9-oz) package frozen creamed spinach, defrosted 6 ounces dry spaghetti, prepared according to package directions 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 6 large eggs 1 cup ricotta cheese

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese 1/2 cup half-and-half 1 ⁄3 cup chopped onion 2 ⁄3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley 1 teaspoon crushed dried basil leaves

Preheat oven to 375°F. Combine pasta, oil and 2 lightly beaten eggs in large bowl; press onto bottom and up side of 10-inch pie plate. Bake for 7 to 10 minutes or until set. Combine spinach, remaining eggs, ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, half-and-half, onion, Parmesan, parsley and basil; spoon into pasta shell. Top with remaining mozzarella. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before serving. Robin O’Sullivan,Wiregrass EC

Around Alabama

January 1-February 28,

Bellingrath Gardens, Mobile, Alabama • Winter Camellias • Admission Charged The colder months are a great time to visit Bellingrath Gardens near Mobile. The more than 65 acres are currently filled with many poinsettia varieties, camellias, narcissus, as well as a winter garden filled with ornamental kale, mustard and cabbages, pansies and violas, primroses, cyclamen, tulips, daffodils and hyacinths. There are several special winter events scheduled for February including Camellia Day and Mini Camellia Show Saturday, Feb. 5 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., as well as a rose pruning party Saturday, Feb. 12. The Mobile Rose Society visits Bellingrath and prune more than 2,000 roses in 75 different varieties. The event is open to the public and the Rose Society offers advice to attendees on rose cultivation. The gardens are open year-round from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. There are several admission packages offered and children under 5 are free. For more information and directions, call 800-247-8420.







28 • Pell City The Platters concert Pell City Center Tickets: $35 Contact: Center box office 205-338-1974

11 • Millbrook Mardi Gras Parade (family oriented) Village Green Park Festival at 9 a.m., parade at noon The largest Mardi Gras parade north of Mobile. Featuring Mardi Gras related food vendors, arts and crafts. Admission: Free Sponsored by MAX Community Credit Union, Hardees and Central Alabama EC Parade/art contact: 334-285-6847 Vendor space contact: Ken 334-285-3838

5 • Dothan A James Farmer Event Covenant United Methodist Church 10 a.m. and 7 p.m., recipe sampling 30 minutes prior to each session Tickets: $15 per session or $25 for both sessions (each session is completely different from the other) or $20 at the door For tickets: or 334-836-0179 For information: Carole Lee 334-792-6240

25 • Fairhope 12th Annual Ecumenical Ministries Inc. Chili for Charity Oak Hollow Farm, 14210 Greeno Road 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Admission: $10-adults $5-children ages 3-12 All proceeds benefit social service programs Contact: Sally Deane, 251-928-3430 18 • Dauphin Island Battle of Mobile Bay 5K Run Fort Gaines, 9 a.m. Contact: Port City Pacers 251-473-7223 25 • Mobile Girl Scout Thin Mint Sprint 5K Run 8 a.m. Contact: LRH Productions 251-401-8039


18 • Pell City Terry Padgett as “Elvis”-The Man Behind the Suit Pell City Center 6:30 p.m. Complimentary wine and cheese party, 7 p.m. Terry Padgett’s tribute to Elvis Contact: Pell City Center Box Office, 205-338-1974 Scan this code with your phone and join Alabama Living on Facebook.

Follow Alabama Living on facebook Follow Alabama Living on Twitter @Alabama_Living ®

To place an event, mail to Events Calendar, P.O. Box 244014, Montgomery, AL 36124; e-mail to calendar@ (Subject Line: Around Alabama) or visit 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.


Alabama Living

january 2012  29

Market Place Miscellaneous AERMOTOR WATER PUMPING WINDMILLS – windmill parts – decorative windmills – custom built windmill towers - call Windpower (256)638-4399 or (256)638-2352 CUSTOM MACHINE QUILTING BY JOYCE – Bring me your quilt top or t-shirts. Various designs offered – (256)735-1543 KEEP POND WATER CLEAN AND FISH HEALTHY with our aeration systems and pond supplies. Windmill Electric and Fountain Aerators. Windpower (256)6384399, (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@, (888)211-1715 SAWMILL EXCHANGE: North American’s largest source of used portable sawmills and commercial equipment for woodlot owners and sawmill operations. Over 800 listings. THE place to sell equipment. (800)459-2148, www. NEW AND USED STAIR LIFT ELEVATORS – Car lifts, Scooters, Power Wheelchairs – Covers State of Alabama – 23 years (800)682-0658 FREE CREATION SCIENCE INFO – WWW.CREATIONANDSCIENCE. NET – Adults, teens – Box 508, Fairhope, AL 36533 DIVORCE MADE EASY – Uncontested, lost spouse, in prison or aliens. $179.00 our total fee. Call 10am to 10pm. 26 years experience – (417)443-6511 WALL BEDS OF ALABAMA / ALABAMA MATTRESS OUTLET – SHOWROOM Collinsville, AL – Custom Built / Factory Direct (256)490-4025, www., www.

30  january 2012

Business Opportunities EARN $75,000/YR PART-TIME in the livestock or equipment appraisal business. Agricultural background required. Classroom or home study courses available. (800)488-7570, www. PIANO TUNING PAYS – Learn with American Tuning School home-study course – (800)497-9793 START YOUR OWN BUSINESS! Mia Bella’s Gourmet Scented Products. Try the Best! Candles / Gifts / Beauty. Wonderful income potential! Enter Free Candle Drawing - www.naturesbest. Vacation Rentals www.vacationsmithlake. com – 3BR / 2BA home w/ 2 satelite TV’s, gaslog fireplace, central H&A, covered boat dock $75.00 night – (256)352-5721, email PIGEON FORGE, TN: $89 - $125, 2BR/2BA, hot tub, pool table, fireplace, swimming pool, creek – (251)363-1973, www. GATLINBURG TOWNHOUSE on BASKINS CREEK! GREAT RATES! 4BR/3BA, short walk downtown attractions! (205)333-9585, GATLINBURG / PIGEON FORGE LUXURY CABIN – 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, home theatre room, hot tub, gameroom – www., www. wardvacationrentalproperties. com, (251)363-8576 PANAMA CITY BEACH CONDO – Owner rental – 2BR / 2BA, wireless internet, just remodeled inside and outside – (334)7900000,, 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 Day Special - Call (866)316-3255, www.

ALABAMA RIVER LOTS / MONROE COUNTY, AL – Lease / Rent – (334)469-5604 HELEN GA CABIN FOR RENT – sleeps 2-6, 2.5 baths, fireplace, Jacuzzi, washer/dryer – (251)948-2918, email PIGEON FORGE, TN – 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath house for rent $75.00 a night – Call Bonnie at (256)338-1957 GULF SHORES / FT. MORGAN / NOT A CONDO! The original “Beach House” on Ft. Morgan peninsula – 2BR/1BA – Pet Friendly, Non-Smoking – $695/ wk, (256)418-2131 ORANGE BEACH / GULF SHORES VACATION HOMES AND CONDO RENTALS – www.3palmsrentals. com for your next beach getaway. Great Rates! (251)980-7256 GATLINBURG CONDOS: BEAUTIFUL MOUNTAIN AND SKI SLOPE VIEWS – Book your Smoky Mountain getaway now. Call Jennifer in Scottsboro at (800)314-9777, www.funcondos. com – Non Smoking, Alabama owned 1 BEDROOM CABIN NEAR PIGEON FORGE – $85.00 per night – Call (865)428-1497, ask for Kathy FT. WALTON BEACH HOUSE – 3BR / 2BA – Best buy at the Beach – (205)566-0892, MENTONE, AL – LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN – billiard table, Jacuzzi, spacious home, sleeps 10 – www.duskdowningheights. com, (850)766-5042, (850)661-0678.   GULF SHORES RENTAL BY OWNER – Great Rates! (256)4904025 or GATLINBURG / PIGEON FORGE CABIN - Sleeps 8, full game room/ hot tub – (256)630-9122 www. vrbo/ GULF SHORES CONDO ON THE BEACH! 2BR/2BA - Beautiful

update at SANDPIPER - (502) 386-7130 GULF SHORES CONDO – 2BR / 1.5BA, sleeps 6, pool, beach access – (334)790-9545 SMOKIES - TOWNSEND, TN – 2BR/2BA, secluded log home, fully furnished. Toll free (866)4486203, (228)832-0713 GULF SHORES PLANTATION Gulf view, beach side, 2 bedrooms / 2 baths, no smoking / no pets. Owner rates (205)339-3850 GATLINBURG, TN CHALET – 3BR / 3BA Baskins Creek – Pool, 10 minute walk downtown, Aquarium, National Park – (334)289-0304 ORANGE BEACH CONDO, 3BR/3BA; 2,000 SQ.FT.; beautifully

How To Place a Line Ad in Marketplace Closing Deadlines (in our office): February 2012 – deadline December 25 March 2012 – deadline January 2012 April 2012 – deadline February 25 -Ads are $1.65 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 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.

decorated; gorgeous waterfront view; boat slips available; great rates - Owner rented (251)604-5226

- Rated A-Plus by the BBB - Jim Johnson  Broker #46880, Jim Johnson Realty #71809 - www., 256-602-4565 

TOURIST CABINS 4 RENT BY OWNER – Pigeon Forge / Gatlinburg – Call for holiday quotes (865)712-7633

HUNTING PROPERTY – BARBOUR COUNTY – 35 ACRES. Owner Financing. Call (813)788-5414

CABIN IN MENTONE – 2/2, brow view, hottub – For rent $100/night or Sale $239,000 – (706)767-0177 GATLINBURG – DOWNTOWN LUXURY CREEKSIDE CONDO – 2BR / 2BA, sleeps 6 – aubie12@, (256)599-5552 Camping/Hunting/Fishing CAMP IN THE GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS – Maggie Valley, NC –, (828)421-5295. Real Estate Sales/Rentals ALL YOUR COMMERICAL AND RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE NEEDS. Timber, Mining and Land Sales Consultant

Alabama Living

12.5 ACRE PECAN ORCHARD, COVINGTON COUNTY. Rolling terrain with ponds. Includes 30’x 60’ insulated metal building with electric and water. Approximately 90 miles from Gulf Coast beaches. $139,000. (703)754-2694 GULF SHORES – WHY RENT? Own a great condo 4.7 miles from Gulf beach – (251)948-8008, www. MOUNTAIN VIEW HOME SITES atop Sand Mountain. Protective restrictions, Travel CARIBBEAN CRUISES AT THE LOWEST PRICE – (256)974-0500 or (800)726-0954

Musical Notes PIANOS TUNED, repaired, refinished. Box 171, Coy, AL 36435. 334-337-4503 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 Education BECOME AN ORDAINED MINISTER correspondence study. Founded in 1988. Free info. Ministers for Christ Outreach, 7549 West Cactus #104-207 Peoria, Arizona 85381. http://www. FREE BIBLE CORRESPONDENCE COURSE – write to 23600 Alabama Highway 24, Trinity, AL, 35673 Critters ADORABLE AKC YORKY PUPPIES – excellent blood lines

– (334)301-1120, (334)537-4242, CHIHUAHUA PUPPIES. Tiny, registered, guaranteed healthy, raised indoors in loving home, vet records and references. (256)796-2893 ADORABLE SHI-TZU PUPPIES, AKC, non-shedding, home raised – average 7-9 pounds, some smaller – (334)391-8493, (334)272-3268 www.walkersdogcollars. com – FREE NAMEPLATE WITH EACH COLLAR – Printed and attached. Fruits / Nuts / Berries - 1 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

january 2012  31

Market Place

32  january 2012

Continued from Page 24 fresh or brackish marshes. They also will visit salt marshes. Snipe resemble woodcock, sporting long wings, a short tail and long bill for probing the soggy ground searching for insects, worms, snails and small crustaceans. The feathers are striped with flecks of brown, black and buff colors that provide excellent camouflage. Snipe hunters are rare. Most snipe are shot by duck hunters when they happen to fly by during a morning duck hunt. Snipe are, however, one of the most challenging targets a shotgunner can face. When they are “kicked up” by hunters, they are very quick with an erratic flight pattern, making it difficult to

hit for even the most experienced wing shooters. A real organized snipe hunt is a great deal of fun with a group of friends. Snipe generally freeze in cover, and flush at the last minute with blinding speed, giving the hunter a quick dose of adrenaline. They don’t fly for long, however, and you can sometimes watch where they land and flush them again. A good dog can help when snipe hunting because they are hard to find when they fall. Dogs in this type of hunting should be well trained to stay close to the hunter, otherwise they will flush snipe that are out of shooting range. Snipe season in Alabama is Nov. 14 through Feb. 28. No joke, snipe hunting is a real deal. A

January Wildlife Management Tips Plant fruit trees for wildlife. Early January is the best time to plant trees and get the best results. Make sure you plant them strategically in areas around food plots, fields, along roadsides and other areas that will provide adequate sunlight. Strip-disk along roadside, around old fields and in thinned pine plantations to enhance quail and turkey habitat. Strips 10-30 feet wide will stimulate natural desirable quail and turkey food like partridge pea and beggar weed. You should do this every other year. Fertilize selected roadside areas to increase nutritional value in native browse. Look for places where

Continued from Page 18 I always wear my bicycle helmet and a mountain climbing harness so I can lower myself down slowly if I lose my footing. Much of the hazardous damage to chimneys is caused by moisture entering from outside. This moisture can migrate through the brick and the mortar joints into the chimney. This is bad everywhere, but particularly so in cold climates with repeated freeze-thaw cycles during winter. Use a water- or solvent-based sealer on the chimney bricks and mortar. Alabama Living

honeysuckle, green briar and other wildlife friendly plants are growing. Apply at around 200 pounds per acre. Late winter is a great time for prescribed burns. Nothing helps more than controlled fire to enhance wildlife habitat. Make sure you obtain the proper permits. A

The crown of the chimney is another location for moisture to enter. Tap on it lightly with a hammer to locate any loose areas and brush them away. If the crown is still in good condition, coat it with a special elastomer crown repair compound. Check the condition of the mortar joints. Where you find loose mortar, fill in the gaps with a elastomer concrete-colored sealer. Also, inspect the flashing where the chimney meets the roof. Deteriorated areas can be sealed with a flexible flashing repair compound. a january 2012  33

Enjoy a Hot Shower and Help Control Costs at the Same Time


y having a CAEC Peak Shaving Device installed on your electric water heater, you’ll still have hot water when you need it, while helping the cooperative reduce its need to pay for peak-time power costs. If enough people join this effort, we can have a positive effect on our future rates. Will you join us? The peak shaving device for your electric hot water heater is free, and will be installed by a licensed electrician at no cost to you just by submitting the form below. To learn more about this program, visit our website,, or call (800) 545-5735, ext. 2118 or (334) 351-2118.

----------------------------------------------------------------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):____________________ Signature:__________________________________________ Mail form to: Central Alabama Electric Cooperative, P.O. Box 681570, Prattville, AL 36068


| JANUARY 2012 | Alabama Living

Recipe for Efficiency from CAEC Caulking


e all want our home to be energy efficient, and according to the U.S. Department of Energy, drafts are responsible for the loss of between 5 and 30 percent of a home’s

Utensils (tools): Standard Caulking Gun Scissors or Knife

Putty Knife Towel

energy. Keeping tight seals around your doors and windows is a simple and cost-effective way to help reduce power bills.

Ingredients (supplies): Latex Paintable Caulk

Directions: Caulking compounds vary in strength, properties and prices. For a long-lasting seal, choose permanently waterproof, flexible, shrink-crack-proof 100 percent silicone (specifically for doors and windows), and if you are painting, try paintable silicone. For this project, we will caulk around a door frame.



Before you apply the caulk, wipe down the surface with a damp cloth to remove any residue or dirt; then strip or scrape old caulk out of the gap or crack. Take the tube of caulk and cut the tip at a 45 degree angle.

3. Pierce the seal on the cartridge to allow the caulk to flow evenly.

4. Insert the tube of caulk into the caulking gun.

5. Start applying a bead of caulking to the areas you have prepared, squeezing evenly, and with consistent pressure and speed to control the rate at which the caulk leaves the tube.

6. Complete a section at a time and smooth out the caulking with the tip of your finger.

Note: The trick to a good caulking job is to hold it at a consistent angle and draw the bead continuously rather than in a stop-and-start fashion. Then release the trigger before pulling the gun away to avoid excess caulk oozing out.

Caulk forms a flexible seal for cracks, gaps or joints less than one quarter-inch wide. Making smart choices like caulking to stop air seepage throughout your home can help you save energy and money. d

Our Sources Say

How do you feel about 2012? It will take compromise, but we can find a way to success and prosperity

Gary Smith is President and CEO of PowerSouth Energy Cooperative

34  january 2012


s long as I remember, new years have been depicted as babies in diapers with smiles on their faces, and past years have been depicted as scowling old men. I am not usually optimistic, and the PowerSouth staff often refers to me as the pessimist in the group. As I look ahead, it is easier to think of 2012 as a scowling old man than a smiling baby. I can’t remember any time that people, including me, are as uncertain about the future as now. Tea Party members are concerned about taxes and government debt levels. Wall Street protestors demonstrate against the wealth that investment bankers have accumulated through the latest recession. Businesses question government-imposed regulations that have the prospect of limiting growth and investment. Environmentalists are concerned about the condition of the environment into the future. Politicians complain that the other political party is hindering their social reform. Consumers are concerned about their jobs and their ability to balance household finances. We have been through recessions and depressions. Things have been bad before. I am as concerned now about the future and prospects for people – especially the poor and those on fixed incomes – as I have ever been in the past. The economy refuses to pick up, regardless of the Federal Reserve’s lowering interest rates to historic lows and other government efforts to spark economic growth. Federal government debt continues to grow, and the stock market remains rather stagnant through volatile periods. Unemployment levels will remain high, new or better jobs will be more difficult to find and compensation levels will remain static without economic growth. Although gasoline prices have declined, increased social costs from government regulation are driving up the price of household necessities such as food, electricity and clothing. The price increases of those items reduce the amount of disposable income available for the average household. The reduction in available disposable household income reduces

consumer spending and tends to depress the economy. Government regulation, especially by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) continues to add increased cost to manufacturing and production by increasing the cost of material production inputs and electricity required for the production cycle. Even as the economy struggles, EPA continues to impose additional regulation that further stifles improvement in the economy. The government also proposes increased taxes, which may curb the growth of government debt but also further slows economic growth. Capital required for businesses to expand operations and for people to finance personal assets is becoming harder to secure as banks brace for fallout from the deepening European financial crisis and increasing European governmental debt. If European countries are truly bankrupt – and it appears that some are – can we expect those problems to find our shores and cause additional havoc with our economy? While regular people grope for solutions to their everyday problems like paying household bills, finding jobs, educating children and planning for retirement, politicians posture and preach about the opposing party’s unreasonable positions, and how if re-elected they can improve our lives. With all those problems, no clear social consensus and no easy solutions, it is difficult to view 2012 as a cute, smiling baby. However, I do. I think of the greatness in the country’s past and how we have overcome so many obstacles. I believe we can again find a way to success and prosperity. It will require sacrifices, social and political consensus, people working together for the good of the whole and – more importantly – compromise. I am confident that with a presidential election in the fall we will come together as a single people and work toward a common goal of making a great country and great society even better. I plan to have a great 2012, and I hope you do, too. A

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january 2012  37

Alabama Snapshots 1



Grandkids II

4 5


Submit Your Images! MARCH Theme:


1. Don and Magdalene Landers with grandson Ethan Bishop Moss submitted by Magdalene Landers, Town Creek 2. Red Odom with granddaughters Maggie and Zoe Forehand submitted by Kathy Odom, Gallion 3. The Hataways’ Grandchildren: Bottom row: Madison, Hayden, 38  january 2012

Andrew, Heath; Middle row: Gabriel, Holly, Johnna, Natalie, Noah; Top row: Heidi submitted by James and Elaine Hataway, Samson 4. Emily Barkway submitted by Steve and Joyce Barkway, Fairhope 5. “Kisses” submitted by Audrey Singleton, Chatom

Send color photos with a large self addressed stamped envelope to:

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. Alabama Living is not responsible for lost or damaged photos. Deadline for SUBMISSION: January 31

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Alabama Living’s latest cookbook containing recipes from four years of Alabama Living magazine. COOK BOOKS @ $19.95 each _____ CHURCH BOOKS @ $32.95 each _____ TOTAL: ___________ shipping included

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NAME: _______________________________________________________ ADDRESS: ____________________________________________________ CITY: ____________________ STATE: _______ ZIP CODE: ____________ o CHECK o CREDIT CARD PHONE NUMBER: _______________ Credit Card Number: __ __ __ __-__ __ __ __-__ __ __ __-__ __ __ __ Expiration Date: ______________________ CVV#_____________________ Signature: _____________________________________________________


A beautiful pictorial history of Alabama’s churches ranging from small rural churches to towering urban cathedrals.




Churches Alabama of


Alabama Living Central January 2012  

Alabama Living Central January 2012