When I was young, I was fairly certain of 2 things:
1. I was really displaced English royalty; someone lost at birth who would be ultimately restored to their rightful place in aristocratic society.
2. I could easily be Laura Ingalls Wilder.
Both of these notions had their roots, of course, in literature. I was The Little Princess of Frances Hodgson Burnett and Laura from the author of the same name. It’s easy to lose one’s grasp on reality when a good narrative tickles your fancy. That is the standard for excellent literature – the ability to move you to a different place, time or situation.
As an adult, I think I have given up my hope that I’ll have tea brought to me by servants who curtsey. Yup, pretty sure I’ve abandoned that notion….. Sigh, a girl can dream, can’t she?
But as to the Little House in Bellevue, that one remains firm. Yes, I have in earlier days raised chickens, my sister made me a bonnet, I drink raw milk and get my meat from a local rancher and doggonit, I’ve fulfilled another LIW (Laura Ingalls Wilder) goal. I have begun making cheese! Continue reading
Last weekend I was the only one up, so being gracious, I eschewed vacuuming in my loved ones’ dreams. Instead I turned on the TV in the family room quietly and was drawn in [pun intended] by a familiar yet departed face. Bob Ross was painting some happy little trees, and he managed to keep me enthralled with the magic with emanated from his brushes and knives. How *did* he do that? RIP Bob. You are a wonderful memory to a lot of people!
Another lovely, but too soon departed soul is Jeff Smith, known on television an in his books as the Frugal Gourmet. A local with a knowledge of all things food, he inspired a generation of cooks to not only cook well, but cook with intelligence and thrift. Continue reading
General rule: if you’re going to make something special for your family, don’t take cheap and sleazy shortcuts. That’s my rule, and I’m going to stick by it. That doesn’t mean I never cut corners, but doggonit, if I’m going to make something which says, “I really care about you,” it won’t have non-dairy whipped topping out of a plastic tub. The exception to cutting corners is Chili Cheese dip, which is a football tradition.
So this morning, being St. Patrick’s Day, I was sent a recipe for Irish Chocolate Trifle. My husband doesn’t like chocolate, but with enough liqueur, even he might be tempted. I clicked through to the proffered recipe and said, “ewwwwww.” I’m posting the link if you want the dumbed down version. There you go. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
So let’s take a good idea and do it right, OK? Continue reading
One day, you’re sitting in your easy chair, wondering if you move slightly, whether you might find any loose change stuck in between the cushions, when out of the blue you are blindsided by the very silly notion that life would be ever so much better if you just had your furniture in a different place in the room, right? You begin the joyous process of a new look and a new functionality, only to have people later ask, why did you move that? Now I don’t have the right light/can’t see the TV/hate change … Continue reading
To leap playfully
I used to have a book about funny words, which my mother had given to me to read to the children. I don’t remember most of it, but one picture sticks in my mind — several lambs around a table with cards, poker chips and other accoutrements of betting. The sentence was, “Lambs gamboling on the lawn.”
Gambol means to frolic, in case that doesn’t immediately strike you as funny. Continue reading
The building before the one where they filmed High School Musical
I learned to love football in high school. The games were right after school on Fridays, so almost the whole school would traipse out the backdoor, onto the field and cheer on our beloved men in red and white. Later in the evening on home games we would also have a dance (be sure to read my sister’s spot on analysis of that event).
When I chose a college I had 2 requirements: 1) it couldn’t be in my home state and 2) it had to have a good football team. I landed at the UW during the Don James era. Bliss!
And so it is Super Bowl Sunday. The kids are away, so no need to pile it on. They are not football fans, but will sit with me obediently through at least part of the game, provided the snacks are good. Their favorites are the Chili Cheese dip and silly good guacamole. Continue reading
We passed the Mayan Apocalypse and the Internet is still here, so clearly the Mayans were wrong. If the Internet ever dies or WordPress goes away, my recipe collection is in serious trouble.
Matt wanted “New Year’s Tea.” That’s what we called it growing up. It was originally called Russian Tea, if I’m not mistaken, but we always had it for New Year celebrations, hence the name.
You can cheat and use bottled juices, but I admonish you to try it with the fresh fruit. It’s always better fresher! Continue reading
I was born in a time when the miracle of all miracles had been invented. Alexander Fleming is credited with discovering what is called penicillin, a drug derived from the Penicillium fungi; health from mold. What a concept.
Had this drug been available earlier, things like the Black Plague may never have made it into the history books, and consequently left us devoid of plague monuments throughout Europe. STD’s like syphillis and gonorrhea would have become diagnoses, not death sentences, and leprosy, the scourge from the beginnings of recorded history, would have deprived Jesus of walking among the physically outcast from society. Continue reading
We here in the Pacific Northwest are an odd weather lot. With an average year round temperature of 54, we get picky about things like too cold or too hot. We are closet rain lovers, whilst putting up a good whiney front when it’s too wet.
It happens every year, a chorus of “where’s summer?” from May until mid-July. When my kids were younger, we had a bench mark of 72 degrees before we could go to the beach for swimming. They would glue their eyes to the thermometer in the car whenever we went out, hoping it would shine the magical numbers which meant fun in the water. Continue reading
I went to the high school where the “High School Musical” installments were filmed. Yes, it’s supposed to be set in New Mexico, but the building is on 13th East in Salt Lake City. When I was a student (circa the Pleistocene era), it didn’t look as it does currently. That is a pity; it was a grand old building.
So I say Salt Lake, and the follow up question is always, “Are you Mormon?” It’s like peanut butter and jelly, bacon and eggs or bread and butter. The answer is no, I am not. My father had three employment possibilities when he received his doctorate. He knew nothing about any of the cities, so he pulled a Doctor Dolittle and chose Spider Monkey Island. Actually, he chose Salt Lake. My parents fell in love with the beauty of the state and live there still. Continue reading