After an early Easter dinner for some family members that can’t make it tomorrow, I took a stroll around Magnolia. Where is Magnolia, you ask? I have been asked this many times and usually answer, “In the middle of Nowhere and an hour and a half from Everywhere.” Tucked away off I55 South, close to the Louisiana line, this small town is the center of a cross that’s relatively 90 minutes from Baton Rouge, LA, Natchez, Jackson, and Hattiesburg, MS.
Magnolia is the county seat of Pike County and as I write this I realize that I neglected to take a picture of our courthouse. The grounds are quite pretty with lots of azaleas and magnolias.
Here are 3 of the churches in Magnolia: Episcopalian, Presbyterian, and United Methodist. There is also a Catholic and a Southern Baptist Church.
Down the block and around the corner is the Magnolia post office. Built in the 30’s, the architecture is very pretty and you step back into a less busy era when you walk through the front doors. Three murals painted by J.H. Fyfe depict rural life of nearly 200 years ago. The dark stained wood work in the foyer is remarkable for a little town like Magnolia. It’s worth a day trip to come and see.
Magnolia Post Office
Another block and you’re at the old depot. It was completely renovated a few years back and is now the town hall.
The park in the depot is planted for Springtime and the Magnolia trees are all in full bloom.
City Hall is now in the depot.
At the opposite corner of the depot grounds and catty-corner across the street is Handy Hardware. This old fashioned hardware store lives up to its name. From live crickets for fishing to plumbing supplies; You need something, they’ve got it. And in the middle of West Railroad Ave a new consignment shop has opened up. The Me’lange Market has some interesting pieces. And like Handy Hardware you’ll be pleased with what you find in this shop. Another staple and anchor in Magnolia is the Corner Drug Store. It started out on the other end of Railroad Ave, but was moved quite a while ago to its current location.. It has been in business well over 100 years. Their slogan is ‘right on the corner and right on the price’. I clerked there as a newlywed 30 years ago and now college man works there in the afternoons. Go by and tell him, “Hi!”
Corner Drug Store
I continued my walk and returned home. The huge ancient live oak greeted me in the early evening.
Magnolia, MS is a nice place to take a respite in Nowhere, while traveling from Everywhere else. Stop and get a bite to eat at one of our restaurants, fill up your gas tank , and enjoy the slower pace.
Blessings from the Exile’s Kitchen for a Happy Easter.
One chimney is out of the farm house. Friday sand mortar was shoveled into buckets and dumped into the driveway. The old bricks were thrown out a bedroom window: I’ll deal with them later- September, maybe. I kinda felt like Cinderella, cleaning out the old fireplace, until I saw the nest complete with mummified mouse! I screamed like a girly-girl!
Saturday the rain drizzled off and on all day. Not complaining. We’ve had a two month drought and the rain was most welcomed. That morning also brought able hands to hang sheet rock in two bedrooms. I am so thankful they work cheap. A slow cooker of chili, homemade cornbread and honey pralines were their payment.
The rain has continued. What to do on a rainy Sunday evening? With work, church activities and farm house renovations, I am up against the clock. But my family will be expecting Christmas cookies. The Hallmark Channel playing in the background, I busied myself in the kitchen.
I made two batches of cookie dough. Recipes on the back of toffee and chocolate chip bags are excellent and easy. Here’s a time saving tip: lightly coat big squares of parchment paper with vegetable spray, divide the batches of cookie dough onto the paper and press and roll the dough into logs. The vegetable spray keeps the cookie dough from sticking, of course. It’ll be a sinch to remove the dough from the parchment, when it’s cookie baking time.
Mark the outside of the cookie dough rolls with precise descriptions of what is in the cookie dough. (I have a nephew with food allergies and I try to be very careful in what I make, when I know he will be coming to visit.)
Five rolls of cookie dough went in the freezer for baking later in the month: Two Peanut Butter Heath Toffee and three Ghirardelli Chocolate Chip-sans nuts.
The day after Easter is National Peeps Day, dedicated to those sugar coated marshmallows shaped like chicks and bunnies this time of year. I had bought several packages in different colors, thinking I’d have a weekend with my granddaughter and we would make those cute little bunnies-in-Twinkies-with-chocolate-dipped-miniature-pretzels-for-steering -wheels-and-halved-tiny-sandwich-cookies-for-wheels-race cars. You can look on Pinterest and find them. So, I had all of these bunny peeps; what to do with them?
Well, it’s coffee time. Floating a few on top is cheering, after a long day at work. Waste not want not goes the old adage. Of course, I don’t believe Peeps ever really go bad.