Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.

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Fried Chicken 4th

It’s nearly Independence Day, already! They’re even doing 4th of July weather reports, so we know it’ll be here in a matter of days. How’d that happen?

That means it’s time to buy a few chickens and haul out the cast iron skillets. Why? you ask. Because, in the Shay household, 4th of July means FRIED CHICKEN!

mom's chicken pan


I put flour, salt, pepper and a little garlic powder in a bag (paper or plastic) and shake my chicken up in it (a few pieces at a time) then fry the pieces in canola oil. With the heat on about medium, I cook the chicken with a lid on for a few minutes on each side, then take the lid off and turn the heat up a little to give the chicken a good color and great crunch. I’m not the best chicken fryer in the world (can’t be, since I only practice my magic one time a year) but nobody complains while they’re chowing down. LOL.

I’m not sure when it started, but sometime in the distant past, I started frying chicken one day a year. Only on the 4th of July. One of the first Fried Chicken Fourths I remember, the kids were all fairly small. (grade school/middle school age.) I fried up a few chickens and we loaded up and went to Oklahoma City. We found Thunderbird Park, which had old military equipment (tanks, jeeps, helicopters, planes) for the kids to play on, and some picnic tables, and had our lunch.

okc imagesO1XZL3TY

There was a military museum nearby, the 45th Infantry Museum, and since our family never saw a museum we didn’t love–at least that’s what our kids thought– we had to check it out!


Since G-Man’s dad was in WWII, our boys had a great time.

okc imagesYW0MT0Z9This is not a picture of Gary’s dad. LOL.

Finally, after our fried chicken and a stroll through history lesson, we all went to the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden.


Since we had three little boys in tow, you can probably guess how much time we spent in the Botanical Gardens. LOL. But we had a great time at the zoo. Especially when we found the Tiger Cage. (C-Town and Pryor Creek Tigers! Yay!!!)


I have some great memories tangled up with our fried chicken. Times when Mom and Dad came up for chicken, and afterward we parked on the Salina Bridge to see the fireworks, and times when we took our Party Barge out on the lake for tubing and chicken. I’m SO looking forward to grandchildren and the fun time we’ll have with them eating my fried chicken on the 4th! (And possibly any time they want it.)

Loving the Fried Chicken 4th!

Do you have any traditions you practice on the 4th that you can share? We might want to add them to our chicken. 😀






Love and Hate in Okieland

The weather has gone back to normal here in Okieland. 😦

I was hoping for a cool summer, like the one back when I was single when we had to build a big fire at the lake to stay warm on the 4th of July. But I don’t think that’ll be happening.


Even though the temps were mild this a.m. when I spent a few quiet moments on my deck, that bright spot in the pic is going to heat up my world. *sizzle*

We’ll be in the mid-to-high nineties today.

So, as per usual, we’ve skipped the long spring and zoomed right into summer. I wish I loved the heat. (I don’t.)

But I have friends who do. They enjoy the beams bouncing off their toasty brown skin. Love sweating out. Enjoy taking a breath of super-heated air. They attack the weeds in their yards, cut down trees and haul it all away without the hint of a whine.

(I’d need an entire wheel of cheese with the big whine I’d be doing.)

When it’s Hot, I really want to Hibernate. Hide out. Have a ton of quality TV time. But if I do that, everything I’ve worked so hard to plant will croak. And that’s just mean.

Are you a warm Summer Lover or a Heat Hater?

Terminally Curious wants to know.