Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Mother’s Pecan Pies, Mother’s Sweet Potato Pies and Virginia Watts’ Chocolate Pie The South’s best soul food comes from our Southern kitchens! Two of my favorites to bake are cookies (which you all know I love to bake) and pies. My mother loved to bake pies and would always roll out her own dough for
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Inspiration from God’s Word - God’s ‘No’ means a greater ‘Yes’

By Toni Ford Have you ever received a “no,” or maybe a “no, not now,” response from the Lord concerning a prayer you had been praying for weeks, months or even years? This past week, our family experienced an answer like that. And although that answer at that moment made us sad and full of
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Pious Bob - Dying for the Love of All

By Robert Halsey Pine “For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. Indeed, rarely will anyone die for a righteous person–though perhaps for a good person someone might actually dare to die. But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for
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The chaotic side of normal

 By Vicki Scott As the Scott house assumes the chaotic side of normal for us, there have been a few changes along the way. My husband Alan has started riding his motorcycles again and I have returned to staying with my mom in Dadeville during the week. Mom and I planned to track back to
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Southern Cooking: Cafeteria Macaroni and Cheese, Nancy Wood’s Corn Pudding and Vanilla Wafer Cake

By Andy Bedwell Once my family has decided what entrée we will have for Thanksgiving, the next step is figuring out what goes along with it. These are some of my favorites. Cafeteria Macaroni and Cheese 1 pound elbow macaroni noodles 4 eggs (4-ounces) heavy cream (12-ounces) milk (4-ounces) butter, melted (12-ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
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The Vagabond - Readers respond to Temple Beth Israel article

By Danny Crownover Last week The Vagabond wrote about America’s worst Jewish shooting or bombing (until recently in Pittsburg, Penn.) that happened here in Gadsden. It was also posted on Facebook on the “Welcome to Gadsden” group page. The response about the incident that happened at Temple Beth Israel in 1960 was unbelievable with over
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Pondering life with Pious Bob... Bearing God’s Fruit

By Robert Halsey Pine “Listen, I will tell you a mystery! We will not all die, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed…Therefore, my beloved, be
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Inspiration from God’s Word - Covenant, power and promises

By Toni Ford As I have been reading the book of Joshua this past month, I picture it being divided in three parts. The first part (chapters 1-12) is Joshua completing the first half of his commission. He had conquered the enemy and was now in control of the land and the cities the Lord
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"Yes, you can vote for Craig Ford and still vote a straight party ticket. Here’s how…" - Rep. Craig Ford

Several people have asked if it’s possible to vote a straight party ticket and still vote for me for State Senate. The answer is, yes! All you have to do is “Double Bubble.” First, you fill in the bubble next to your political party and then fill in the bubble next to my name in
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The Vagabond - Temple Beth Israel and the Jewish community

By Danny Crownover Jewish folks were living in Gadsden as early as 1900. Among these locals were Jacob and Bertha Nadler, Hugo Hecht, David Reich and Albert Hagedorn. By 1903, the entirety of the Gadsden Jewish population – roughly 10 families – decided to meet communally on Sunday mornings in order to provide a Jewish
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Southern Cooking: Cabbage Soup, Mexican Cornbread and Jane Cosby’s Banana Pudding

By Andy Bedwell I love walking into the kitchen on a cold and rainy day and smelling a warm and inviting soup simmering on the stove. I love all kinds of soups. Some are thin soups with rich broths, hearty soups that are meals by themselves and many other homey and soothing soups. I also
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Pious Bob - The Working Faithful

By Robert Halsey Pine “But someone will say, ‘You have faith and I have works.’ Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith.” (James 2:14-26 NRSV). I’ve heard this debated hour after hour and year after year. Does faith or works save us? The apostles
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Inspiration from God’s Word: What is your fragrance?

By Toni Ford Have you ever thought much about another person’s fragrance or noticed how the environment shifts when someone enters the room? According to Webster’s Dictionary, fragrance is defined as a “pleasant aroma or a sweet smell.” If someone were to ask us what type of fragrance we are, I wonder if most of
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Russian Rocks and Orange Slice Cookies I think I say this every October, but this really is my favorite time of the year. Along with the beautiful colors of fall, we have the pumpkin patches, cornmazes, and so many wonderful events that happens in Alabama. Of course, we have our football and hunting seasons in
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The Vagabond: Mary Elizabeth Counselman Vinyard and The Leota steamboat

By Danny Crownover The Vagabond recently was standing on the Coosa River boardwalk by where the Alabama Princess riverboat was once moored. The boat is no longer owned locally or docked at the location. But The Vagabond’s thoughts were about all the old riverboats that once plied the river. One of these original paddle-wheel boats,
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Coconut-Pecan Pound Cake, Mandarin Orange Cake and Chocolate Chip Pound Cake If you have any hopes of being a good Southern cook, you need to be a great cake baker. I did not say that it had to be a cake made from “scratch” (as we say in the South), but a tasty and moist one. As far as
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Pious Bob - Lame Excuses

“And a man lame from birth was being carried in. People would lay him daily at the gate of the temple called the Beautiful Gate so that he could ask for alms from those entering the temple. When he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked them for alms…But Peter
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How you vote in November could decide whether or not you get to vote on a lottery

By State Rep. Craig Ford The lottery has been talked about for decades in Alabama. There’s no question that the voters support it, but the state legislature has failed to pass a bill that would let the people vote. Two years ago, the lottery almost made it through the legislative process before it died in
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The Vagabond: The Gadsden Fault - an earthquake waiting to hit Gadsden?

By Danny Crownover This week, The Vagabond will discuss the Gadsden Fault, which follows part of the High Town Path around Gadsden. Over the years, The Vagabond often has admired the local stone formations that tell an exciting geological story. There are strange examples of wind and water erosion that have been carved during the
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Pondering life with Pious Bob... How Much Longer, Father?

By Robert Halsey Pine “Whoever listens to you listens to me, and whoever rejects you rejects me, and whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me. The seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, in your name even the demons submit to us!” (Luke 10:16-17 NRSV). One of the greatest feelings that a person can have
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Southern Cooking - Brunch Casserole, Eggnog Pancakes and Blueberry Monkey Bread

By Andy Bedwell Let’s do brunch! Brunch Casserole 10 slices of bread, cubed (I don’t remove crusts) 1 pound of Dean’s Sausage, cooked and crumbled 1 (8-ounce) package cheddar cheese, grated 8 eggs, beaten 4 cups milk salt and pepper to taste Put the bread cubes in a greased deep baking dish. (lazy me uses
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A Lifetime of Praise

By Toni Ford The last five Psalms – 146 to 150 – are considered “hallelujah psalms” that focus our attention on praising the Lord. Psalm 146 begins with a vow to praise God throughout life and is filled with hope as a result of all God’s promises to His children. In this psalm, we are
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Inspiration from God’s Word - Bring out in order to give

By Toni Ford Deuteronomy is essentially Moses’ farewell address to a new generation. In chapter six, we find Moses reminding this new generation that they must never stop teaching the meaning of the laws to their children and telling the numerous stories of how the Lord brought His people out of slavery. One of the
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The Vagabond: The 1823 journal of Lucius Verus Bierce through Etowah County

By Danny Crownover Many people have asked The Vagabond about the combined Creek Path and High Town Path that went up Penitentiary Hollow (up Fisher Creek from Cox’s Gap). This is the route Andrew Jackson used before he created a new route called the Jackson Military Trace through Highway 179 and today’s Ivalee community. Years
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Southern Cooking - Salmon Patties and Hoyt’s Biscuits

By Andy Bedwell I hope all of you are familiar with Hoyt Tidwell and his videos from his southern kitchen in Tennessee. Would you believe he and I talk on the phone about his recipes and his wonderful cookbook? Of course, we mention a few of my recipes. We southern cooks have to stick together,
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Pious Bob: In This Corner, Weighing...

By Robert Halsey Pine “Athletes exercise self-control in all things; they do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable one. So I do not run aimlessly, nor do I box as though beating the air; but I punish my body and enslave it, so that after proclaiming to others I myself should
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Why aren’t we paying our Alabama educators what they’re worth?

By Craig Ford Alabama State Superintendent Eric Mackey said last week that Alabama’s public school teachers are “overwhelmingly well-qualified.” His assessment came after the State Department of Education issued its latest report cards on the college and university programs that prepare our teachers. Our public school teachers do a great job; there’s no doubt about
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The Vagabond: Few know about three tribes in Etowah County

By Danny Crownover Many folks over the years have asked The Vagabond about what Indian tribes lived in å County. The most commonly known tribes are the Cherokees and Creeks. Yet few people realize that there was a third tribe, the Chickasaws. The Cherokee tribe was located in northern Etowah County. The Creeks were located
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Southern Cooking: Chocolate Cobbler and Banana Cobbler

By Andy Bedwell This week is Andy’s homemade cobbler week! My mother could make the best cobbler, and I think it was because her homemade pie crust was so thin and crispy. She would always say, “You can even make a good cobbler with a store-bought pie crust, plenty of liquid and good fruit, and
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Turning defeat into victory

By Toni Ford I believe it is safe to say that we have all experienced both defeat and victory at some point in our lives. If that is true, then how do we keep from staying in an attitude of defeat and how do we turn our mistakes into a victory? Henry Ford once defined
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Pious Bob - Worthy of Praise

By Robert Halsey Pine “Praise the LORD! How good it is to sing praises to our God; for he is gracious, and a song of praise is fitting.” (Psalm 147 NRSV). We expect a lot from God. He watches over us, He heals our broken hearts and His power and understanding is awesome. This psalm
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Cornbread Skillet Casserole and White Shoe Peg Corn Salad This week, I am going to feature some of my family’s favorite dishes and some of these are not in my cookbook. My son, Mac, comes home from Birmingham every Saturday and I always cook something that I know he enjoys eating. He specifically asked me to make this
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Pious Bob - Finding Your Role

“Then Paul answered, ‘What are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound but even to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.’” (Acts 21:1-14 NRSV). As a Warrior for God, Paul makes General Patton look like a sissy. Paul has his critics both
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Inspiration from God’s Word - God’s faithfulness to His children

I love the book of Deuteronomy. If you ever need reassurance of who God is in your life, read this book! In the first chapter alone, we see so many characteristics of God’s faithfulness to care and protect His children. Deuteronomy 1: 29-33 (NIV) says, “But I said to you, ‘Don’t be shocked or afraid
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Infamous outlaw came through Etowah County

By Danny Crownover – The Vagabond Reuben Houston Burrow was an infamous train robber and outlaw in the southern and southwestern regions of the United States. During the final years of the American frontier, he became one of the most hunted men in the Old West since Jesse James. From 1886 to 1890, Burrow and
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Pious Bob: A Laugh with the Lord at Paul’s Expense

By Robert Halsey Pine “Then all the city was aroused, and the people rushed together. They seized Paul and dragged him out of the temple, and immediately the doors were shut.” (Acts 21:27-36 NRSV). Paul was committed to preach the Gospel in the temples no matter how much he was rejected and no matter how
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Southern Cooking: Crusty Pound Cake, Wet Chocolate Cake and Quick and Easy Sour Cream Pound Cake

Let’s eat some more cake this week! Crusty Pound Cake 2 cups sugar 1 cup Crisco 6 eggs 2 cups cake flour 1/4 cup frozen orange juice 1 tablespoon vanilla Cream sugar and Crisco. Add eggs, beating well after each. Add flour, orange juic and vanilla. Put in a greased and floured tube pan. Place
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If Mississippi can pass a lottery, then so can we

By State Rep. Craig Ford Alabama can no longer say, “Thank God for Mississippi.” The Mississippi State Legislature recently passed a state lottery, and Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant has said he will sign it into law. This means that Alabama will now be one of only six states in the entire country – and the
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Southern Cooking: Queen Anne’s Lace Cake and Fresh Peach Pound Cake

By Andy Bedwell Let’s eat some cake! When we talk about the sleepovers that we used to have back in the early 1950s, a fond memory that my neighborhood friends still recall concerns my mother and her cooking. My mother made a great four-layer, freshly grated coconut cake with seven-minute frosting and freshly grated coconut
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Inspiration from God’s Word: The Prayer of Jabez

By Toni Ford The church I attend just completed a series on prayer, as well as our bi-annual 21 Days of Prayer. During this time, we are all encouraged to readjust our focus on the Lord and let prayer be our first response and not our last resort. Our church provides a simple prayer journal
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How the Phoenix Hotel became a house of disrepute - Part II

By Danny Crownover Last week The Vagabond wrote that back on Feb 16, 1909, Gadsden was to have another hotel at a neat new place on the southeast corner of Chestnut and 5th streets. The new place became known as the Phoenix Hotel and was run by Miss Theo Barry. She was related to the
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Pondering life with Pious Bob - Dealing with the Law and Our Sin

By Robert Halsey Pine “What then should we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet, if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet”…So the law is
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Local Revolutionary War sergeant had Civil War connections

By Danny Crownover The Vagabond recently received an e-mail from Sonny Stowers, a former resident of this area. He wrote: “Hello! I thought I’d send you a picture that was created for me, dealing with some of my Civil War relatives. I think it’s kind of interesting.  I thought you might like a story about
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Pondering Life with Pious Bob... Working on the Right Part

By Robert Halsey Pine “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God–not the result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand
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Southern Cooking: Shrimp Dip, Hawaiian Aloha Dip and Sad Cake

By Andy Bedwell Let’s get ready for some football with some snacks and goodies! Roll Tide and War Eagle! Shrimp Dip 8 ounces cream cheese 1 cup mayonnaise 1 (11-ounce) cream of shrimp soup 1 (4-ounce) can shrimp, drained 1 cup chopped onion 1 tablespoon lemon juice Combine the cream cheese and mayonnaise in a
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The Vagabond: The Phoenix Hotel in Gadsden became a house of ill repute

By Danny Crownover Back on Feb 16, 1909, it was announced that Gadsden was to have another hotel at a neat new place on the southeast corner of Chestnut and 5th streets. It was to be known as the Phoenix Hotel and operated by Miss Theo Barry. Miss Barry was related to Police Captain W.L.
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Lemon Blueberry Pie, Strawberry Pie and Coconut-Caramel Pies Let’s cool off this August week with some cool pies! Lemon Blueberry Pie 1 9-inch graham cracker crust or baked pastry shell 3 egg yolks 1 can Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk 1/2 cup real lemon juice 1 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind drop of yellow food
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Every school should have an SRO officer

By State Rep. Craig Ford Now that school has started back, a lot of attention has been given to the issue of school safety and security. Concerns over school safety and, particularly, the possibility of a mass shooting are nothing new. Though the Columbine massacre that happened nearly 20 years ago was not the first
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Pious Bob - Giving Up and Giving In

By Robert Halsey Pine “We do not live to ourselves, and we do not die to ourselves. If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord; so then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.” (Romans 14:5-12 NRSV). Most of us live too much
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New school year starting now but should be starting later

Rep. Craig Ford Remember when school didn’t start until after Labor Day? In a matter of days, students all across Alabama will start a new school year, and we’ll only be one week into the month of August! Instead of spending the last few weeks of August working summer jobs or on family vacations, teachers
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Tomato Pie, Stir Fry Garden Vegetables and Rice Pudding Deluxe Tomatoes, tomatoes and tomatoes! They are everywhere! Tomato Pie 9-inch deep dish pie crust 3 medium tomatoes, peeled and sliced thinly 6 strips bacon, fried and crumbled 1 cup cheese (cheddar, Monterey Jack, or Swiss) grated 1 cup mayonnaise Bake frozen pie crust five to
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Inspiration from God’s Word: Onesimus - A Story of Forgiving Love

By Toni Ford Paul was a prisoner in Rome, and his friend Philemon, who had been one of Paul’s co-workers in ministry and a dear friend, lived in Colosse. Along with his wife Apphia, Philemon led a dynamic and growing house church in Colosse. Although Paul had never visited the church in Colosse, the one
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Pious Bob - The Urgency of the Light

By Robert Halsey Pine “Jesus said to them, ‘The light is with you for a little longer. Walk while you have the light, so that the darkness may not overtake you. If you walk in the darkness, you do not know where you are going. While you have the light, believe in the light, so that
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Inspiration from God’s Word - Joshua: A Great Leader

By Toni Ford In the book of Joshua, we read about the story of God’s faithfulness to His people, and how by faith God’s people can overcome and experience life-changing deliverance. The book of Joshua is not only a fulfillment of God’s promise to His children but also an example of a man named Joshua
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Pious Bob - Having Truth In Our Love

By Robert Halsey Pine “Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action. And by this we will know that we are from the truth and will reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. Beloved, if
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Vidalia Onion Appetizer, Best and Easiest Dip Yet, Bacon/Tomato Dip and Easy Stir and Drop Cookies Vidalia Onion Appetizer 5 Vidalia onions, thinly sliced 1 cup water 1 cup sugar ½ cup cider vinegar 1 cup mayonnaise 16 ounces cream cheese, softened 1 teaspoon celery seed Place the onion in a large bowl. Combine water,
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Could we finally get a lottery passed next year?

By State Rep. Craig Ford Alabamians have been asking for a lottery for years. It continues to be one of the most popular ideas polled year in and year out, yet we still don’t have a state lottery. But there’s a chance that could change next year. The Alabama Legislature won’t return to Montgomery until after
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Ice Cream Muffins 2 cups self-rising flour or baking mix 2 cups softened vanilla ice cream Combine the flour and ice cream in a bowl and beat until smooth, adding a little more ice cream if necessary to make a creamy mixture. Grease 12 muffin cups and fill thre-fourths of the way full. Bake at
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Pious Bob - Worldly Ignorance of the Holy

By Robert Halsey Pine “Immediately she rushed back to the king and requested, ‘I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptist on a platter.’ The king was deeply grieved; yet out of regard for his oaths and for the guests, he did not want to refuse her. Immediately the king
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell - Taco Salad Casserole and Mother’s Peach Macaroon Pie

Taco Salad Casserole and Mother’s Peach Macaroon Pie On a hot summer day in the south, a salad is so light and refreshing. This taco salad is a little heavier than most salads, but it is oh, so good. I enjoy making this for my family. I like to use the fresh tomatoes from our
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Pious Bob - Love Lots, Fear Not

By Robert Halsey Pine “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not reached perfection in love. We love because he first loved us. Those who say, “I love God,” and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who
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Inspiration from God’s Word - Four Creatures Small and Wise

By Toni Ford The Book of Proverbs is, “the book of wisdom,” and has often been referred to as a “collection of collections.” Full of Biblical wisdom, Proverbs also raises questions of values, moral behavior, the meaning of human life and righteous conduct. King Solomon, the wisest, wealthiest, and most powerful man in history, wrote
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell - Macaroni Goulash, Broccoli and Corn Casserole and Sinful Chocolate Cake

Thank goodness it’s summer! Macaroni Goulash 1 medium onion, chopped 1/2 green pepper, chopped 1 tablespoon margarine 1 pound ground chuck 1 can (1 lb. 4 ounces) tomatoes 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon mustard 2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked 1 cup sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded (4 ounces) In a
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Inspiration from God’s Word: The Journey to the Promised Land

By Toni Ford How many of you remember the story of Moses leading the Israelites out of bondage? Do you happen to remember who actually led the children of Israel into the Promised Land? It was Joshua, Moses successor. Moses led Israel out of bondage, but it was Joshua who took them into blessing. Moses
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Pious Bob - Out of our Mouths Come...

By Robert Halsey Pine “For every species of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by the human species, but no one can tame the tongue–a restless evil, full of deadly poison.” (James 3:1-12 NRSV). The tongue may be the greatest repository of sin in man. It is
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Blueberry Cream Muffins 4 eggs 2 cups sugar 1 cup Crisco oil 1 teaspoon vanilla flavoring 4 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon baking soda 2 cups sour cream 2 cups blueberries Glaze milk powdered sugar vanilla flavoring Grease 24 muffins cups or line with paper liners. In a large bowl, beat eggs,
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Food for Thought...

By David Williams Someone once said, “What the mind can conceive and the heart can believe, man can achieve.” I believe that statement to be true. The mind can be a very powerful tool. It was due to this belief that I once took a group of high school students to visit various colleges throughout
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Pious Bob - Determining Our Proximity to the Lord

By Robert Halsey Pine “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters. Therefore I tell you, people will be forgiven for every sin and blasphemy, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.” (Matthew 12:22-32 NRSV). They brought to Jesus a man possessed of the devil who
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Inspiration from God’s Word - The truth will set you free

By Toni Ford John 8:32 says, “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” As a believer, we know that Jesus, is the ultimate truth, the definition of truth itself.  Jesus’ primary mission on earth was to set people free by helping them see, know, and believe the truth! However,
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell - Chicken Vegetable Bake and More!

Chicken Vegetable Bake, Hawaiian Chicken and Butterscotch Yum Yum Chicken Vegetable Bake 5 chicken breasts 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon black pepper 3 tablespoons oil 1 can cream of chicken soup 3/4 cup white wine 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms 4 tablespoons chopped green onions 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper 1 can water chestnuts,
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Food for Thought...

By David Williams Have you ever taken stock of yourself? Where have you been and where are you going? Do you allow yourself time to just reflect on the meaning of it all and how you fit in? I often do that. It seems that I am constantly trying to understand all of this while
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Inspiration from God’s Word: A Touch of Heaven

By Toni Ford People who know me know how much I love worship music. If you were asked the question of what helps you enter the Lord’s presence faster than anything, what would you say? Some would say praying, reading the Word, taking a walk or listening to a sermon, but for me it is
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Pious Bob - Understanding that the victory has been won

By Robert Halsey Pine “Therefore, my beloved, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord, because you know that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15:51-58 NRSV). St. Paul ends his long discussion about life after death with these words of guidance and encouragement to the Corinthians.
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Aunt Sue’s Butternut Pound Cake, Pecan Pie and Caramel Corn This week I am continuing my series of my dad’s sisters, who were fabulous cooks. My aunt Sue Lankford and her husband Earl Lankford lived in Attalla for many years, and she was known for her fabulous cakes. I have never seen anyone who could
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Pious Bob - Becoming Faithful and Accepting Children of God

By Robert Halsey Pine “Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and through grace gave us eternal comfort and good hope, comfort your hearts and strengthen them in every good work and word…May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ.”
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Inspiration from God’s Word - The Blessings of the Beatitudes

By Toni Ford In the Gospel of Matthew, chapters 5-7, we read what is commonly known as the Sermon on the Mount. In chapter five, Jesus begins this sermon by introducing His followers to a superior way of living, which was a new way of the kingdom. Up until this time, the Jews primary standard
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Aunt Dot’s Pound Cake and Aunt Eva’s Cinnamon Crisp Cookies Last week, I talked about the little women of Eastside Presbyterian Church and what a wonderful influence they had been on my life and my cooking skills. This week, I want to introduce you to a few of my dad’s five sisters and their recipes
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Inspiration from God’s Word: Searching for Wisdom

By Toni Ford Due to various circumstances in my life, lately I have found myself searching for wisdom more than ever. My pastor has been doing a series recently on the Book of Proverbs, which reminded me that one of the topics often covered in this particular book is wisdom. Several chapters in Proverbs was
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Pious Bob - A Possible Mission in an Impossible World

By Robert Halsey Pine “He said to them, ‘Because of your little faith. For truly I tell you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to the mountain, Move from here to there, and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.’” (Matthew 17:14-21 NRSV). Jesus shouted out
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Southern Cooking - Oatmeal Lace Cookies and Egg Custard Pie

By Andy Bedwell Being a Presbyterian for 60 years means that I have been to more Wednesday night suppers, homecomings, Women’s Circle meetings and various other “eating affairs” than most food connoisseurs. At these gatherings, recipes are exchanged and cooking ideas are discussed. Most of my prize recipes originated from a little group of women who
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Pious Bob... Be Humble and Let Him

By Robert Halsey Pine “You have dealt well with your servant, O LORD, according to your word. Teach me good judgment and knowledge, for I believe in your commandments. Before I was humbled I went astray, but now I keep your word. You are good and do good; teach me your statutes…The law of your
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Alabama’s bridge to nowhere

By State Rep. Craig Ford You may have seen ads on television recently talking about a bridge project in South Alabama. If you hadn’t heard of this project before those ads, you’re not alone. Most people, including legislators, were not aware of the plans to build this $87 million-dollar taxpayer-funded bridge to nowhere that even
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Pious Bob - Faith, Grasping the Invisible

By Robert Halsey Pine “Now faith is the assurance of things not seen. Indeed, by faith our ancestors received approval. By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was made from things that are not visible.” (Hebrews 11:1-12 NRSV). Faith is our confidence in
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Food for Thought...

By David Williams One of President Trump’s potential judicial nominees recently appeared before a panel to answer questions. She was asked about the U.S. Supreme Court ruling of Brown vs. The Board of Education. Her reaction said it all. She paused way too long. She stuttered, stammered, faltered and hesitated. When she finally found her
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Alabama’s Pre-K program leads nation but thousands of kids remain without access

By State Rep. Craig Ford When I was growing up, kids didn’t start learning the alphabet until they began kindergarten. Today, kids are expected to be able to write their names and read at least some words before they even begin kindergarten. The expectations are higher, and starting off behind everyone else in their class can
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Brickle Pecan Cookies and Apple Pie Cake I have always loved spending time in the kitchen and there is something very true about it being the heart of the home. I know it is the place where I am most comfortable with myself and the conversation and laughter flows a little easier. After all, my
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Food for Thought...

By David Williams “Fanaticism consists of redoubling your effort when you have forgotten your aim.” – George Santayana. I am of that opinion that this is what has occurred in our education system. There was a time when students who couldn’t pass were retained. Our biggest fear was looking at the back of that report
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Inspiration from God’s Word - Never Give Up

By Toni Ford Have you ever felt like giving up? I am sure we all have at some point in our lives. Depending on their situation, some people have had to battle this thought on a daily basis. In the Gospel of Mark, we find a group of men that were faced with this same
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Pious Bob - Alive and Well in the World

By Robert Halsey Pine “Then one of the seven angels…came and said to me, ‘Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.’” (Revelation 21:9-21 NRSV). We all belong to The First United Wife of the Lamb Church. The angel showed John the radiant “holy city of Jerusalem coming down out of heaven
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Real Mashed Potatoes, Squash They’ll Eat! and Macaroni and Cheese I believe the best cooking we can find comes from our mothers and is simple, fast, and good tasting! This week, I want to list some sides, or vegetables, as we call them, even though only in the South is macaroni and cheese  considered a
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Pious Bob - Humble Accountability

By Robert Halsey Pine “…For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted.” (Luke 18:9-14 NRSV). The tax collector in this parable prays, “God, be merciful to me, a sinner.” The Pharisee, of course, builds himself up, as he prays to God. Being humble before God is where we
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Baked Taco Casserole and Chocolate Chip Pound Cake Let’s do some quick, easy and good recipes! We Southerners love our comfort foods, and so many restaurants these days present “frilly” foods on fancy plates with swirling sauces for decoration that are almost too pretty to eat. My goal is to serve straightforward, good food in
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Food for Thought...

By David Williams We should seriously consider revamping the education system as we know it. It is common knowledge that many of our students are struggling. We are quick to inform our high school and college athletes regarding the low percentage of individuals who make it to professional ranks. Our desire is not to be
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Inspiration from God’s Word - The Blessings of the Righteous

By Toni Ford I am not sure if you have ever read many of the Psalms, but there are some incredible promises to the believer all throughout this book. Two of these beautiful psalms stood out to me this week, Psalm 111 and 112. Psalm 111 ends by admonishing us to fear the Lord and
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Pious Bob - The Greatest Plan Ever

By Robert Halsey Pine “So there will be one flock, one shepherd. For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I
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How We Can Make Our Schools Safer

By State Rep. Craig Ford Education is the most important service our government provides, and one of the top issues impacting education is school safety. Unfortunately, it seems like every conversation about school safety always turns into a debate about guns, and nothing ever gets done. But there are a lot of things we can –
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Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell

Italian Tomato Salad, Pretzel-Strawberry Salad and Taco Salad I can remember when salad was a wedge of lettuce and a cruet of dressing that set directly on the table. Now a salad can also include a cold congealed salad with marshmallows and cherries or a side of creamy potato salad. Salads have come a long
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Food for Thought...

By David Williams I’ve often been hypercritical about our region on certain issues. I don’t mean to be that way. When I’m researching and viewing things from a moral, historical or even political perspective, however, I sometimes can’t help myself. There are times when we lag behind in change or advancement. Call it tradition or
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Inspiration from God's Word - What does God hate?

By Toni Ford As I was thinking of a name for this article, I really didn’t want to use the word “hate,” mainly because it is such a strong word. This generation especially does not like to recognize that God has the capacity to hate. They would rather see Him as a soft-hearted God who
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Pious Bob - The Goodness of the Unseen

By Robert Halsey Pine “And he said, ‘I will make all my goodness pass before you, and will proclaim before you the name, The LORD…But,’ he said, ‘you cannot see my face; for no one shall see me and live.’ And the LORD continued, ‘See, there is a place by me where you shall stand on
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