Monday, January 25, 2010

It's Good to Have Friends Bearing Gifts

What's the old saying?  Beware friends bearing gifts....not

If you have been traveling around the block blog this morning,
you will see the lovely post by my friend
She and her husband Greg joined my husband Kevin and me
for dinner on Saturday night.
We had a blast.
So much so, I totally lost track of time and
I even stayed up past my bedtime.

One of the best things
(well actually there were too many best things to pick just one)
  was the little package
Kris brought in with her...
no not the sushi...

Can you peek into the you see what's in there.
Obviously you can't see
what was in the wrapper...


So I shall go on record and say


Dinner with the Grovers
Lovely evening spent eating and laughing

  "Pink Flamingos" flocking to the table

And when "Pigs Fly"

I will confess to eating muffins and hope that
muffin confession equals no calories eaten.

Thanks Kris, for the best
oatmeal, banana, chocolate chip delicious scrumptious muffins

Dinner with the Grovers...priceless

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Julie and Julia

Julie and Julia

(In my world she is one and the same)

My bunco girls are a group of
great woman that I have the privledge to call dear friends.
As my dear friend Kris says, it feels like I have bunco
every week. 
I don't, only once a month, but
the girls always make it an event. 
bunco was no different.

January was Julia's bunco.  Julia also goes
by Julie, but her real name is Julia, which I love.
Her theme was Julie and Julia...and if you
have seen the movie (great movie) you
will get the gest of her bunco.

We were greeted at the door by Julia.... in her pearls
and 50's style hat.

and of course her great smile and a beverage.
As I entered her lovely home I was greeted by other women in pearls and 50's styled hats. This of course mad me loudly exclaim "Heellllloooooo"
in my best imitation of Julia Child
and I was greeted back with the same exclamations.

Well as you may have guessed... we all received a strand of pearls and could choose from an array of bygone era hats (about 15 or so) that had belonged to Julia's grandmother.

Shelley and Diana

Vivian... cheers (I think Vivian loved her hat so much she
may have taken it home)

Peggy... isn't she pretty?

The significance of the name tags was to symbolize 3, for the
number of women who wrote
"Mastering the Art of French Cooking"
and the French words for French Cooking School.

Here is Julia's sister Sally, who was visiting for Bunco.

The pearl ritual with Charissa

and the finished product, she did need
to change out the ball cap.

Patty... this hat
fit on no one's head but Patty, and
I thought I had a small head.

Julia bestowing pearls on Tammie

Princess Katina, in the hat saved especially for her.

A view of Shelleys from behind...we all agreed she was dressed the part too

Cynthia in her hat and pearls

And the last straggler....Lisa... joining right in.

Tammie and Julia

The whole gang in our hat and pearl glory.

Thanks Julia for an outstandingly fun time.
Bon Appetit

Friday, January 22, 2010

A Visit in the Night

Thanks Little Birdie

A little birdie came to visit me last night without me knowing….no not from my last tablescape.
My daughter Kristi came in the night and
gave me a new blog look.
She created this new background with my requests
for something pink and black for Valentine’s Day.
She created my last background…which I love too
and want back after February 14th (hint, hint)

Thank you Kristi…what a fun surprise I found this morning. I love it.


I found a second surprise this morning, not near as much fun as the first. As you may know I have always wanted to live on a lake with an old poop. Well the old poop is alive and well, and so it seems is my lake.

Kelley Lake

Do you see those palm fronds there?  They act as torpedo
bombs when
they hit the power lines outside of our house.
They were divebombing yesterday...and we were lucky not to have lost all of our electricity.

I took these from the front door, because if I venture out I am sure to melt.


The old poop (I mean hubster) ventured out though. He was much more prepared for the weather.

Thanks again Kristi for the new background.
Stay dry.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Tablescape Thursday - Bird in a Gilded Cage

Welcome to Tablescape Thursday,
hosted by the lovely Susan at Between Naps on the Porch.

My table is inspired by a birdie in a gilded cage and a gilded birdie
in no cage at all.  I have used the
colors of gold, cream and black.

Here is my birdie in a gilded cage

And here is my gilded birdie that has escaped his cage.... a little quail
(I love quail, and I don't mean to eat)

My quail was living in my Christmas tree and my gilded cage was living in my diningroom.
They both need to be packed back away but they wanted to stay up a bit later, like January.

I told them okay,
but back in the boxes by Valentine's Day. 
They agreed.

I started with my gold and black runner and brought
in some other wintery favorites.  I have a golden snowflake
that spent the holidays on my mantle, along
with the golden pinecones.
(I guess everyone is staying up late)

I was not quite ready to pack them away either so they remerged on my table. 
I used white tulips several times over the holidays...
and I wasn't ready
to say goodbye to them either.  I think I may have seperation issues.

So here they all are having a party on my table.

Where did those other cream colored birds come from?
They must have flown in from the other room for the party.

Oh well, the more the merrier.

A little candlelight...and crystal

Well it is getting late now and
I think Mr. Quail is ready to go to sleep until next year.

So I am off to get the packing boxes, to tuck everything away.

and then I will greet them again like old friends. I always
enjoy unpacking my Christmas things, but boy am I ready to
get the house back to normal afterward.

Thanks for visiting.

Now back to Susans for more Tablescape fun.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme ................

Welcome to Outdoor Wednesday.
Hostest by Susan at A Southern Daydreamer.

I haven't played in quite some time, but today I would like to share....
My Herb garden of sorts...

I have been threatening to plant an herb garden for some time now. I always have fresh basil on my window sill but, I thought it would be fun to have a bit more variety. So yesterday I played in the dirt. I bought italian parsley, rosemary, cilantro, basil, oregano and garlic. I am sageless and thymeless as the stores are gutted and almost herb-free. I will enjoy adding to my collection though.

I had this cart that was a gift from my kids for Mother's Day several years ago and decided it would be the perfect herb garden. So I cleaned it up (it may need some paint and some cute herb signs...
but that's a whole other project and shopping day)

And here is my collection of herbs...

And my new and improved herb garden.
Just as I finished it started raining.
Luckily it's on wheels and I can monitor the amount of rain it gets.
I don't want soggy herbs on my first try.

and the good news is, I have room for more herbs.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Shaken not Stirred

Martini Tasting

What do you give a girl who's turning 30 for her birthday?
A martini bar of course.

Sheryl is getting ready to celebrate a milestone birthday (some of us thought 50 was a milestone) and her mom and dad are throwing her a party.
Since it is a martini themed birthday,
the task at hand was to see which martini was her favorite.
Bummer for us, We had to help her pick her favorite.
Sean came over to bartend and here's what
he found.

He immediately dug in and started to make some of his favs with the help of his little black book.

He had a plan and just needed a few
professional taste testers.

and of course a few empty glasses.
Oh, I do believe there is a lemon drop on the table,
or is it a kamakazee?  Hmmmm???

Only Cheryl really knew for sure.  And on a school night?
I think she really liked them all...who wouldn't?

Thanks Sean... I think we found a winner.

But we may need to keep it a secret until the party...
or not...

Sunday, January 17, 2010

7 Things you wish you didn't know about me.

Thanks Kristi... I am not ungrateful, I have just not
had much time to do this post.  I feel so special
getting a Beautiful Blog award.  I'm with Kris...I don't
know if anyone really thinks my blog is beautiful, but I do
because it contains all of my loves.
I would like to thank Kristi for awarding this Beautiful Blog award to me.

Like so many of you,
blogging has become a large part of my life.
I love the idea of journaling on a regular basis and
adding pictures of family and friends.
It’s almost like scrapping without the mess and cost (Kristi)

My blog was responsible for my request for a new camera, and thus opened up another hobby to my life (like I have time for any more hobbies in my life) and has opened up a new unlimited world of friends. I am amazed on a daily basis at the creativity, inspiration, talent, and humor captured on your blogs. I can never keep up.

Now … 7 things you may not know about me.

1.  I love the smell of dirt and freshly mown grass. The grass in the spring always reminded me of baseball and softball season which I loved when my kids were playing.  The dirt reminds me of gardening and crazy as it seems I love that smell too.

2.  I went to the Fashion Institure of Design and Merchandising (FDIM) and lived in downtown L.A.  for 2 years.  This would be a double huh? for  anyone who knows me. One because I am not much of a city girl and two, I am not much of a clothes shopper.  So why on earth did I pick fashion design?  I used to sew, alot.... so I was encouraged to take this route.  I think perhaps instead of the fashion end of the school I should have attended the interior design side.

3.  I love holidays and holiday decorations... okay so you all know this about me.  Do you know what my favorite holiday is?

4.  I would like to live on a lake like on golden pond with an old poop (oh I have an old poop) and I could take my boat out all by myself and search him out while he is fishing in some cove.  But that would be in the summer.  During the other times of the year I would be living on my vineyard watching my grapes grow, and maybe stomp out a bottle now and then.

5.  I love everything and anything old and with history. I would love to go to Europe and see castles, gardens architecture etc.  I have a fascination with days gone by and I attribute this to my father.  We always said he was much older than his years and that is because he was fascinated by things and events way before his time.

6.  I love movies and that is probably well known, however, sometimes I watch or love movies because of the scenery or house d├ęcor in the movie. The movie can be totally bad but I love the scenery, locale or just the house our hero lives in.  I have an infatuation with houses..old, new, large and small.  I once thought I should be a realtor just so I could go through houses.

7.  Okay, this one is a secret and don't get the wrong idea.  I would like to be a man for an hour.  I don't want to smell, scratch and burb...I just want to see how they think and how they feel.  I think it would be interesting to get the "other prespective".  But only for an hour (and I would like to pee standing up just once) Long term, I am more than happy to stay female.
Okay there you have it, I'm sorry if I shocked any of you but I have been known to be quirky.  Oh, that could have been number 8...I'm quirky..but you already knew that.
Thanks Kristi for the award, this was a lot of fun.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Chef Strikes Again

Wishes do come true.

A few weeks back I wished for a wife or the next best thing a chef.  Well wishes do come true,
sometimes.  I got a part time chef (sort of)

Sean is on a tear. He has decided to eliminate fast food from his diet and takeup cooking.
I have to say that’s lucky for me.
He has some time as he is
waiting for his degree to post, so he can substitute teach.
He has also sat for the LSAT and
will be applying to law school.
In the meantime however
I have gotten my wish….a chef. Sean has agreed to cook for us one day a week, as long
as I provide him with the ingredients and my new knives.

What is tonight’s delight?
I have never cooked lamb and have only eaten it once or twice. I was very surprised that I liked it.
Sean seasoned and cooked it to perfection.
He used a rosemary rub
and grilled it on the barbecue.
It was delicious.
His recommendation though, cover the bones before cooking because they catch on fire.  
If only I had gotton a picture of that.

Chef tasting his lamb to see if it meets his expectations.

The lamb was served with fresh green beans, grilled eggplant
and a lovely loaf of herbed bread.  Other than
the bread we kept it healthy.

My mom liked it so much she wants him to try
a boneless leg of lamb....

Thanks Sean. 
What's for dinner this week?

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