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Annie in Austin
Welcome! As "Annie in Austin" I blog about gardening in Austin, TX with occasional looks back at our former gardens in Illinois. My husband Philo & I also make videos - some use garden images as background for my original songs, some capture Austin events & sometimes we share videos of birds in our garden. Come talk about gardens, movies, music, genealogy and Austin at the Transplantable Rose and listen to my original songs on YouTube. For an overview read Three Gardens, Twenty Years. Unless noted, these words and photos are my copyrighted work.
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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Cookies for My President

In a few hours it will be Inauguration Day, and in a small, domestic way I'll witness and celebrate the Inauguration of Barack Obama, our 44th president. There will be floral trumpets!

Annieinaustin,amaryllis Red Dragon
There will be special cookies. Today I picked a Meyer's Lemon from the little tree in the breakfast room...Annieinaustin, Meyer's Lemon
...using the microplane to get all the zest. Lemon and orange zest, amaretto and cake flour are some of the ingredients in Michelle Obama's Shortbread Cookies. The recipe was in Family Circle Magazine. Annieinaustin,Obama shortbread
Instead of using regular white sugar I decided to sprinkle the cookies with Hawaiian sugar. They are fabulous. Annieinaustin,Obama wreath
And there will be red, white and blue decorations. This homemade grapevine wreath won't win any awards but I like the starry blue ribbon and the gold glittery stems poked in to represent fireworks. And as a gardener I also had to tuck in a few green leaves. Representing hope.


  1. It is an historic day, I'm going to follow it on CNN later today. It is so exciting.
    Happy celebrations/ Tyra

  2. Oh, those cookies sound gooooood!

    Happy Inauguration Day! Sadly, I won't be able to watch it live, but I'm sure I'll be catching up on YouTube later in the evening. Despite my happiness about it, I'm still weirdly nervous and hope everything goes well.

  3. You are a true patriot Annie. I won't be able to watch it live. I will be at work. Even my boss said she probably wouldn't be in today due to the fact she wants to watch it. That just doesn't seem fair. Ha... So it goes when you are a worker bee. I will have to watch the aftermath when I get home. The stations will all be showing the highlights during the news.

    Those cookies look delicious. Have fun...

  4. Ooh those cookies look good. So does everything else!

    I have to admit to being in the dark about Hawaiian sugar, though.

  5. Wonderful tribute and boy oh boy do those cookies look good. What is Hawaiian sugar?

  6. I love it! The cookies and the wreath are just perfect for this amazing day. I will definitely be watching, and then I'll watch it again later with my husband.

    Happy Inauguration Day! (I've never wished anyone a happy Inauguration Day before---but it really does feel like a holiday this year :-) )

  7. Annie,

    Hope...isn't that the perfect word for this historic day! Hope that this new president and his advisers will usher in a better tomorrow. The cookies look scrumptious; lemon cookies are my favorite cookies.


  8. Happy Inauguration Day from MI! The air here is very cold, -13 wind chill this morning, but full of so much hope. We are ready to roll up our sleeves and do what needs to be done!

    I love your wreath and the cookies look delicious. You have covered everything! Enjoy this day!

  9. Hi Annie, what a glorious fabulous day it is. I love that you made M. O.'s cookies and the wreath too. And our sleeves are rolled up too, well said.

  10. Man, those cookies look awesome! For my part, I'm headed to Scholz Garten to watch the inauguration. :)

  11. As I write this comment the ceremony is going on at Capitol. It is a momentous occasion, naturally for you and all the Americans, but somehow Obama has that appeal, that charisma which makes him popular all across the globe. Never before have I seen such excitement in my country on the swearing in ceremony of a US President, but this time many of my friends, including me, are hooked to CNN watching the event.
    May the future hold great promises for America and the whole world. And already a sweet beginning has been made by you with those delicious looking cookies.

  12. Oh, Annie, I'm a soggy happy mess up here, reading posts like yours and watching history be made. Sharing in your joy and hope and pride today, and wishing you all the best in the days and months to come.

  13. Annie, what a nice tribute! I'm getting all teary-eyed again, but not too teary-eyed to go look up the cookie recipe ;-)

    This feels like such a special day!

  14. It was exciting to watch it live, and the musical were excellent too. Lets hope for a rejuvenetaed and happy era for America!

  15. Those cookies look so good. I will have to try that recipe.

  16. Oh Annie. I think your wreath would win an award. What a lovely post. I'd better get into the kitchen and get busy with my special Inauguration dinner. I think I'll pick a lemon too as it's such a special day.

  17. Annie, I had a small gathering at my home this morning to watch the Inauguration, where the most important decoration was available kleenex. I did,however, look for red/white/blue flowers and didn't find what I wanted, so I'll use yours vicariously. Those flowers are red, so you'll get ahead, man!

  18. You made it into a party! Today is my daughter's birthday, so we had a special dinner and dessert too. A good day all the way 'round!

  19. Cookies! What a great tribute.Sounds like you and MSS had quite a ball. What a great day it was, watching and knowing that hope springs eternal on this fateful day. Ours is a political household - my DH worked on the Clinton campaign and in the White House, and I ran campaigns and did national political direct mail for many years. Though I normally don't wear my politics on my blog, I felt empowered now, as well, posting my photo with the President taken almost 2 years ago. I'm looking forward with hopeful optimism. And I can't turn off the TV!

  20. I watched on the computer from work. I wish I had thought to make it a party like you did! That would have been fun!

  21. I like that... that as a gardener, you tucked in green leaves, representing hope. :)

  22. What a wonderful way to celebrate! I remember you talking about the Meyer lemons. I am so jealous that you have Amaryllus...mine are still just buds.

  23. I love the wreath.


  24. Hi Annie,
    I'm late to the party (what's new?), but what a party it was! Best tribute I've seen on the day ... have to admit I took time off work time to watch online for the oath and the speech. I left the MSNBC live chatter (after all, it was Keith O and Rachel M and gang) on during the afternoon as I worked though.

    We had the extra special pleasure of sharing it with our new pup as well, and she's glad to be an Obama dog! Yes, she got extra treats last night too. :-)

    Great post Annie!

  25. Just discovered your blog and have enjoyed your gardening comments and pictures. I live on sunshine Coast of Australia and we have a similar climate so grow similar plants here. We also enjoyed the inauguration of your historical new president down under where we saw it all on live TV. I have been to D.C. and Houston but not Austin. Look forward to your garden calendar and renovations.

  26. Hello, i´m for Portugal, and i like your blog, you are a lovely person.
    I like Obama too.
    Sorry my English.

  27. It was an awesome day, wasn't it, Annie! I didn't decorate or bake cookies, but I celebrated all the same:) To see so many people on TV with smiles on their faces and tears of joy was a wonderful feeling. You can just feel the optimism and hope enveloping our country right now.

    I will have to check out that recipe--amaretto would sure give them some punch!

  28. I hope so !
    What a wonderfull speech he did !

  29. Rock on Annie! What a beautiful blog and I was with you in spirit! I baked a black rye and wheat twisted bread that spelled the word HOPE and took it to friends for the evening! I was in tears off and on all day while I was kneeding and baking love into my bread! You can see the pics on my Facebook...are you on it?

  30. It was a good day, wasn't it?

  31. I think Michelle might actually cook unlike that recipe that Hillary submitted to...Better HOmes? way back when. I don't think that woman knows what flour looks like. How did they taste? Fresh and hopeful?

  32. Lovely tribute Annie and the most important ingredient you used was HOPE, because that's what we have now with this new president, don't we?

    BTW those cookies sound very scrumptious!

  33. Hi,

    I love the red flowers you have - such a rich colour!

    And Obama, I cried when he did his speech - amazing!

  34. renee (reneesroots)Fri Jan 23, 07:34:00 AM 2009

    A very fine post, Annie. I'm going to try those cookies.

  35. Thank you all for commenting!
    Tyra in Vaxholm - it is historic! Thank you for visiting from Sweden.

    Cake flour gives the cookies a delicate texture, Lori. Happy & nervous at once is real life in our time.

    That doesn't seem fair, Lisa at Greenbow! But with station repeats and YouTube, hope you didn't miss much.

    Hi Rurality and Tina - thank you! It's Sugar in the Raw, turbinado sugar from the island of Maui, Hawaii...golden brown and sparkly.

    It was a Happy Inauguration Day for sure, Colleen! I got to watch it with MSS of Zanthan Gardens.

    Wish I could send you a few of the cookies, Gail, but the texture that makes them delicious also means they won't ship well...kind of like the best tomatoes!

    Hello dear Flee! It's so good to hear from you. You're having quite a winter in MI - looks like temps are going down into the single digits this weekend, so rolling up your sleeves should be a mental attribute rather than a way to get frostbite ;-]

    It sure was, Faire Frances. Putting up that wreath felt like wearing my heart on my sleeve...before rolling it up!

    I saw some footage of the crowd at Scholz Garten, Rachel in Bloom - and hoped to catch a glimpse of you but that place was packed!

    Thank you so much for this thoughtful comment, Green Thumb. New shows have told us that the world is interested in our new President, but that information is abstract. Comments coming from all around the world to my little garden blog make those warm wishes both personal and concrete. I second your wish, "May the future hold great promises for America and the whole world"!

    Sometimes it's good to be a 'soggy happy mess', Jodi! Thank you for sharing and for the good wishes.

    At many of the most emotional times in my life the feeling was expressed through baking, Entangled! Weird, but guess I'm just wired that way.

    I watched the We Are One concert on Sunday, too Nicole - hope you caught some of it!

    I read that the recipe was originally from the Obama daughters' godmother, Phillip - hope you like it!

    The wreath is still up, Lancashire Jenny - hope the dinner went as well as the day!

    Hi Robin at GetGrounded - sounds like fun! As to getting misty-eyed...glad I had the sense to not use eyemakeup on Tuesday.

    So every 4 years your daughter has to share with an inauguration, PamDigging? I wonder if this will give her an interest in government? Happy Birthday to her!

    Hi Diana - Wow, the photo of you and our new President is very cool. MSS of Zanthan also shook his hand when he visited Austin in 2007. Knowing both of you makes my degrees of separation closer! Woo,woo!
    Hopeful Optimism, yes.

    Hi Wendy from Arkansas - Your blogs look fun....I also love the idea of a First Mother-in-Law!

    Thanks, BlackswampKim - just had to do it that way.

    You know how to cook, ChuckB - go for it!

    All I did was water that amaryllis, Tabor - the flower could not wait to get out and be in bloom today.

    Thank you, Rachete. A compliment from a real artist is very sweet!

    It was wonderful Iowa Gardening Woman. Guess we should start practicing "Yes, We Will" as the answer to challenges ahead.

    Thanks, IVG - it was quite a day, and it was obviously special to you to have Hanna at your side. The timing for her arrival was fortuitous!

    Hello Lizzie from Australia. Best of luck with your venture into the world of blogging. One of the wonderful side-effects for me has been real-life meetings with other bloggers. I wish that joy to you, too.

    Thank you for visiting from Portugal, Manuela.

    It's amazing to think how many times TV has connected us to other people. PrairieRose wasn't it good to have one of those times of emotional connection be so positive and optimistic!

    Thank you for visiting and commenting, David from France.

    Hello ConsciousGardener - love hearing you also express yourself through flour ;-]
    Twitter has me addicted - think Facebook would be too much!

    Yes, Pam in SC, it was a good day.

    Whether or not Michelle cooks, Layanee, the recipe is something her family likes - good enough for me!

    Now I need to find a recipe that includes Energy and Endurance, Yolanda Elizabet - ingredients for the long haul.

    Thanks for visiting from Vilnius, Lithuania, Smile - and best of luck with your new blog and plans to stay classy and fabulous.

    Hi Renee of Renee's Roots - thank you.
    The recipe just said nuts or fruits. I used blanched almonds and think they work well with the amaretto.

    It was good to share this day with all of you.


  36. Annie,
    What a wonderful post. Thank you for taking the time to do it! I've posted a comment about it on my blog.


    Thank you again!

  37. What a unique way to celebrate - I hope you had fun. =p

    Lauri xox

  38. happy to come by and invite all to spread Healthy Wealth too,

  39. apt 1227 sends their love

    read out blog anne, we read yours and LOVE IT

  40. Annie, this is a wonderful "Annie" tribute to a good man and his wonderful family.

    I had a snow on Jan. 20 and could not take my eyes off the TV and I wept several times.

    I didn't make cookies or decorate so nicely as you, but I made some homemade chicken noodle soup. It's "feel good" soul food because that's how I felt all day.

    Thanks, Annie.


  41. I love that you went to such effort for such a cause. I could just about manage to risk incurring the wrath of my boss to watch it on my computer at work! It must have been an incredible day in America!

    We British are envious.



  42. GOBAMA.

    I want to eat one of those cookies.
    They look tasty.

  43. A cool way to celebrate. It was quite a day, wow.

  44. My Meyer Lemon wants to be just like yours when he grows up! I'm hoping our new administration can make us lots of lemonade, cuz' our country is bogged down with plenty of lemons! Fingers crossed!


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