Sewanee, Tennessee is one of the most beautiful places in the South. Although I’ve only left the South twice in my life, were I better traveled I’m sure I’d say it was one of the most beautiful places in the entire world as well. Every time Mama and I drive through this town or walk along the mountain trails its as if our daily stresses are leached directly from our souls.
There is a peace here that I’ve not found anywhere else. I think the town realizes the value of that peace in how they preserve the natural landscape, burrowing structures among the trees and hills rather than mowing them down to make more room. Even though the famous University of the South is located there, folks have still found a way to keep their heads on straight when it comes to tradition and values.
My first visit to Sewanee was over fifteen years ago. Mama and I try to go there once a year for a quilting retreat at St Mary’s, (although I’ve regretfully missed the last few years and will miss this one as well). We sit and sew, talking and chatting with friends and looking out the windows at what appears almost be too beautiful to be real.
There is also a labyrinth at St. Mary’s that I enjoy walking. The last time I walked it was when I was trying to decide if I should have a second child (Katy Rose is the outcome of that). Mama and I always take time to walk along the trails, often times ending up at the entrance to the convent or the Templeton Library (which has a fascinating history to it, ask any native when you visit for the somewhat tragic inside scoop).
We take time to visit our favorite gift shop in nearby Cowan, The Sampler, to pick up something pretty to bring back with us, and the little white tea room called The Corner House just across the street provides a perfect lunch. As we drive back up the mountain with its twists and turns we have to watch for the little turn off to go to a salt glazed pottery studio. I’m not sure if it’s still around but I think the name is Hallelujah Pottery. Mama has a beautiful vase she got from there and I hope to make it back soon to pick out a mixing bowl. From there we head on over to the township of Assembly once more to drive down the roads cut for carriages and visit the small community virtually untouched by time.
Our days in Sewanee are long, relaxing, and reflective. In Sewanee, we haven’t a care in the world. With no thoughts even for dinner. As each meal time draws close all we do is simply wait for a smiling lady to step outside the kitchen door and ring the dinner bell. It’s amazing how spoiled you can become in just a few days. St Mary’s cooks are known for their simple and delicious food. This is where Mama first had this tomato soup and brought the recipe back to me. I’ve tweaked it a bit but I’m sure you’ll enjoy the outcome.
I hope you try it soon and if you get a chance, do pay a visit to Sewanee.
(Surprisingly, this post wasn’t sponsored by them but just writing about my last visit has left me with a smile on my face and a calmer state of mind.)
You’ll need: A can of petite diced tomatoes, a little pesto sauce, and a can of tomato soup.
You’ll also need some milk. I’m using whole but you can use whatever is in your fridge.
Pour soup into a sauce pot.
Fill up the soup can with milk and add that.
Pour in can of tomatoes, juice and all.
Add a tablespoon of pesto sauce
Stir that up and heat over medium until heated through.
Serve warm. Make it a complete meal by adding a buttery toasted grilled cheese.
Take a deep breath and walk a mountain trail, if only in your mind.
Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.
~Confucius . Submit your quote here.