"I told Lane we better do good because I don't ever want to leave."
Moving to Knoxville has afforded Layla Kiffin something that's very unusual in the world of football - being near family.
"For us to be here with my mom and Lane's dad and mom is just priceless. It's very rare in this profession to be with family," she said.
Her brother, David Reaves, is also in Knoxville, working with husband Lane Kiffin as quarterback coach for the University of Tennessee.
"I told Lane we better do good because I don't ever want to leave," she said.
"My kids are so happy here. They really are. We live on the water and we're on it almost every day."
The family has moved into a lakeside home in West Knoxville, and she said the couple's three children, Landry, 4, Presley, 2 1/2, and Knox, 7 months, love their new surroundings.
"My kids are so happy here. They really are. We live on the water and we're on it almost every day," she said.
Although tailgating isn't something she does often, she loves to entertain at home.
"Lane works so hard that when he's home and has time off he likes to hang out with family and close friends," she said.
She enjoys cooking for her family and said her children's favorite food is pasta.
"They would eat it breakfast, lunch and dinner if I would let them," she said.
Chicken Parmesan is her husband's favorite dish, which she acknowledges she's "pretty good at making." If her husband gets near the grill he can whip up a "mean chicken fajita."
"He loves to grill," she said.
When asked if she had a favorite family recipe, she smiled and said, "My mom is a wonderful woman, but one thing she is not is a cook. We used to call her Microwave Patti. So unfortunately, I have no family recipes to pass along," she said, quickly adding, "My mom made up for (lack of cooking) in other ways."
Kiffin was an event planner when she met her husband, and although she always wanted children, she never thought she would give up her career.
"I loved what I did and was really happy with the way my career was going. But since they have arrived I can't even imagine working. It's just not for me," she said.
She manages to juggle the family's schedule pretty well but said friendships with other coaches' wives are very important to her.
"We're raising the kids and doing it all by ourselves pretty much six months out of the year. So for me, I instantly attach myself to some of the other wives. We pretty much stick together."
"We're raising the kids and doing it all by ourselves pretty much six months out of the year. So for me, I instantly attach myself to some of the other wives. We pretty much stick together," she said.
Her children's personalities are still developing, but she's already discovered something about girls that she never knew before.
"I have brothers, so I never experienced the whole sister thing, but oh my gosh, the drama between those two can be ridiculous," she said.
She described Landry as having a "take-charge" personality, Presley as a "spitfire, but she's 2 years old, so the jury is still out," and Knox as being "very laid back."
"Our oldest is probably going to be the first female president. She is the spitting image of her dad," she said.
When asked if more children are in her future, she didn't rule it out.
"We've said we want more, but I don't know. I'm very happy with what I have right now," she said.
She's amazed at the attention she's received on the Web. Various sites comment on her attractiveness, but she said she has little time to worry about that kind of stuff.
"When my brother told me about being the No. 1 Googled name the day of Lane's press conference I was shocked and thought it was funny. I've heard about some of the Web sites out there, but I've learned not to pay much attention to stuff like that. I've got three kids under 4. I don't have time to worry about that sort of thing," she said.
She shares the following recipes.
Death by chocolate
1 (21-ounce ) package brownie mix, prepared
1/4 cup Kahlua
1 large tub (16 ounces or larger) whipped topping (CoolWhip recommended)
2 (3-ounce) packages instant chocolate pudding or 2 (6-packs) premade chocolate pudding
8 Heath bars, crushed
Prepare brownies as directed. Let cool. Poke holes in brownies and pour Kahlua into holes. Then crumble brownies with a fork. Using trifle bowl, layer half of brownie mixture with half of pudding, half of whipped topping and half of the crushed Heath bars. Repeat process, ending with crushed Heath bars over whipped topping. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight before serving.
2 cans black beans, drained
2 cans Rotel diced tomatoes and green chilies, drained
1 can corn, drained
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
Mexican cheese, to taste (optional)
Cilantro, chopped, to taste
Garlic salt, to taste
Salt and pepper, to taste
In large bowl mix all ingredients together. Place in refrigerator and let sit overnight. Serve with chips.
Melt-in-your-mouth pizza bread
12 sheets phyllo dough (in grocer's freezer section)
1/2 cup melted butter
3/4-1 cup Parmesan cheese
8 small tomatoes, sliced thin
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
Defrost phyllo dough according to directions on box. Grease large cookie sheet with cooking spray. Place one sheet of dough onto cookie sheet and brush lightly with butter. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Repeat the layering of phyllo, Parmesan cheese and butter four times. Cover fourth layer with mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle onions evenly over cheese and top with sliced tomatoes. Season with oregano, garlic salt, salt and pepper. Top with Parmesan cheese. Bake in 350-degree oven for 25 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.
Mary Constantine may be reached at 865-342-6428.