Thursday, February 28, 2019

February Goodbye

It's time to say goodbye to another month and to share this month's Kevin Dodds calendar page. I've enjoyed February's picture but after two months of horses, I'm ready for the unique homes Mr. Dodds does so beautifully. 

I'm more of a house lover instead of a horse lover. Our granddaughter Nora, on the other hand, is madly in love with horses. But then, aren't most little girls?

Speaking of granddaughters, here was my kitchen shelves decorated with our granddaughters' Valentines, and an old snapshot of my sweet mother in her kitchen.

The girls' Valentine to their PawPaw was a Star Wars, May the force be with you one! I should have put it here for a pic too.

Now the shelves are featuring an invitation to a very special birthday for one son and a beautiful picture another son took of Spaceship Earth at Epcot. 

I love changing around the kitchen shelves constantly.

RH just brought about an amazing change in our kitchen by taking care of a little project outside. He pruned back two huge hollies, one of which had totally blocked the smaller of the two kitchen windows.

We hated doing it because the birds love to nest in it and the bees love the flowers but it was driving me batty having a black hole at the end of my kitchen.

Here's a picture from Christmas showing the dark hole.

See what I mean? Sunshine at the large window and a few feet away a black hole. 

It has made such a difference! I know some people would have cut down the whole bush but I love having the cardinals nest in it and peek in the window at me. One red male pecks on the screen when it's past his dinnertime.

I'm mesmerized by having the sun shine on things in that end of the kitchen. I know this is a lot of kitchen pics but I took a ton of them and will try to do a kitchen post at the other blog soon so couldn't resist using some here.

Remember my beautiful pink amaryllis that was in the silver champagne bucket at my kitchen sink all through the holidays? I moved it and the beautiful grasses that grew up through the moss into our living room.

It will get moved outside when the night temperatures get up to at least 50 in spring. And now I'm searching for something else to put in the bucket by my sink.

Come the first week of March that pine cone pitcher and other winter things will be put away and tender spring green colors will come out. Winter lover that I am, I admit to being ready for that!

First we have another blast of winter heading our way--I should be ashamed of even calling it that when my blog friends from the north have really been having winter.

And I understand we have more rain heading our way after four days of glorious sunshine. 

More rain? Here's how high the pond got after our last week:

Very full and I was thankful we lived uphill not downhill from it.  And I was happy to stay inside and cocoon, which always includes cooking.

I had been craving real honest-to-goodness homemade rice pudding studded with raisins and made Ruth Reichl's rice pudding, recipe here.

But I used all the leftover egg whites to make a meringue for it after seeing this picture in an old rice pamphlet I've had a long time.

No cherries on top but it was delicious and I'm sure Ruth wouldn't mind I added the meringue. I'm sure she also wouldn't mind that I used a couple of tablespoons of Calvados brandy to macerate the raisins in overnight.

See that smile? That's the smile of a girl who would appreciate a little Calvados in the pudding, don't you think?

We turn the calendar page tomorrow and I'm almost giddy with the thought of it! 

Are you?


Friday, February 15, 2019

I dreamed I wore a pink raincoat.

I dreamed I wore my new pink Paris raincoat for a walk to the pond with the dogs. I let the day's drizzle fall gently on my face as I gave thanks for being blessed with an English rose complexion.

The rain did not frizz my pale blonde hair. 

Storm clouds gathered but held off until I leisurely strolled around water's edge.

Eventually I walked back to the house, whistling for the dogs, my mind full of plans for writing the final chapter in my latest book, the aroma of a perfectly roasted hen, redolent of rosemary and lemon and garlic coming from the kitchen.

I knew that a chilled crystal bowl of creamy potato salad waited in the refrigerator and a bottle of Maison Veuve Clicquot was on ice in the silver champagne bucket.
A late lunch for two at a beautifully laid table was waiting only for RH to wash his hands after pruning the  English roses in the garden.

Into your baskets, BreeBree and James Mason! 

Hurry, before Mama wakes up!

[my raincoat-wearing alter ego from Harper's Bazaar, February 1936]


Thursday, February 14, 2019

Happy Valentine's Day, Burns!

In my opinion you should have won Best of Show at Westminster, you handsome dachshund, you!

We dachshund lovers are pretty burned up about it going to a wire fox terrier--for about the 1000th time. Sorry, King, you had a face I wanted to kiss and it's not your fault, but that trophy belonged to Burns.

I spent far too much time scrolling through every single Best of Show winner since the Ark landed and King's ancestors appeared over and over and over. 

Can we next time have a judge who's raised dachshunds for decades, please?

I must get over this insult that I and BreeBree and James Mason took personally. It is Valentine's Day and my heart should be filled with love towards all, I guess. 

I have Bolognese sauce cooking slowly for a candlelit pasta supper tonight so I'll think only of romantic things the rest of the day--like that scene from Lady and the Tramp where the darling couple are eating spaghetti and they each take an end of one pasta strand.

Isn't that one of the most romantic movies ever? I must see if Amazon has it where RH and I can watch it next Valentine's Day.

I hope Burns gets to dine on his favorite meal tonight and is being spoiled rotten this week so his mind will be kept off that rival wire fox terrier. 

In the meantime, RH and I will spoil our own champions...

One of whom is the same color as Burns!

Let's face it, it'll be a long time before I'm not mad at that judge. And from what I see, a lot of dachshund moms and dads feel the same way. 

Happy St. Valentine's Day, y'all!

And yes, most of my blogging problems got solved, with lots of help from my son, hours and hours of help. There are still some hair-pulling episodes happening every day as I try to sign in again to everything, changing passwords as I go, but I have a security system working so no more pop up ads, yeah!

Monday, February 11, 2019

Blogging Help!

Please help if you can.

I haven't been able to reply to comments left here or at my other blog today. 

And I don't think the comments I've left at other blogs have gone through.

I've searched all through online instructions and as far as I know I've done everything they say to.

If anyone can think of anything for me to try, please let me know in a comment or email.

Thank you so much,

 TUESDAY morning: Success! I can now comment and reply again! I signed out of blogger and signed back in, changing my password and that worked! 

Next I will have to try commenting at some wordpress blogs where I haven't been able to leave comments lately and see if that's straightened out yet.

As my dad used to quote Winston Churchill, "Nevah, nevah, nevah give up!" Or something to that effect!  

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Mandarin Orange Time

Thank you, California!

It's Mandarin orange time, my favorite February fruit!

Unbelievable sweetness and if you can believe this article here, so good for you.

I would love to leave them out on the counter in my pretty Red Wing pottery dish but they went into the fridge after they posed for their photo.

My life has been so uneventful this week that all I have to show you is one mini-project that happened.

The cabinet in the dry sink was a mess and Marie Kondo offered a simple solution on Tidying Up--baskets!

Sam's had a special on a pack of three lightweight baskets and I'm now a believer in baskets for corralling lots of loose packages.

All James Mason cares about is that he smells food in there somewhere. He's feeling lots better but is still on a med and being restricted from anything but gentle movements.

Ha! Tell that to a dachshund who wants to bark ferociously at every noise he hears and race his sister to the door when they hear Daddy coming home. 

We're doing the best we can. Neither of them are allowed to jump on the sofa anymore, it's barricaded off, and he finally got to start going out to his pen without being carried after RH built him a ramp to walk up and down the porch steps. 

Neither Jame Mason or BreeBree are happy about losing their sofa. 

Friday, February 1, 2019

Fantasy Fashion for a Daughter


What are we going to do with them?

A 1934 fifteen-year-old thinks she knows everything there is to know about fashion.

Here is what I want my Anne to wear to the Valentine's Day Dance at school...

Don't you love that fuchsia-purple faille taffeta evening frock?

The pale pink sash is so sweet and I know that her father would approve of the ruching around the neckline.

Anne looked as if she were going to cry when she tried it on.

"Mother, you wouldn't! 
I look about twelve in it.
Even if a boy asked me to dance if I wore this,
no one would cut in on him, no one."

That dejected look on her face went away when she tried on the one she chose.

At least she had not chosen a black dress but even in pink she immediately assumed such a sophisticated pose and world-weary face.

Where did that hand on the hip stance come from?

Is this my little girl?

Is she really old enough to wear slipper satin?

With that low d├ęcolletage?

Will she next think she is old enough to go to nightclubs?

And the most important question of all--

What will her father say?

[Gowns from Vogue magazine, Advance Retail Trade Edition, November 1934]