Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Happy Easter

Wishing Everyone a very Happy Easter!!!!

Ukrainian Pysanka - aren't these gorgeous eggs -

I would love to be able to do this exquisite old world craft.

A Mid-Week Posting

GR&DF not too much going on here in Bagdad by the Bay. I did want to thank you for the comments and think I can answer some of them...

Cindy asked about the header snap - Yes, they are all things I stitched and have yet to get framed. I chose things that were sort of the same size and just folded them over and fanned these out to make a wave like pattern. I can not take credit for this as I saw it over on Margaret's blog first and really liked the way it looked. (go check out her blog she does beautiful stitching and has just finished up a gorgeous sampler!!)

Addie asked about stitching reproduction samplers - and what my thoughts are about whether or not to stitch in the original makers name/initials and date or to stitch in my name and date. I think it depends on the reason for the stitching of the piece. If you are trying to create a reproduction of the original then to include the original makers information will make the piece, however it is your piece and I think stitching in any initials or dates you wish to make it your own are just fine. Again it all depends on what you are stitching it up for. For me I usually change up the piece so much that it no longer is a reproduction - anywho - so I just stitch in my name/initial and dates. Ultimately it is your piece and you should do your own thing.

Berit pointed out my little smack at NPI silks - I went back and read what I wrote and it does come off a bit harsh. I should amend that to say .... I do like NPI for stitching as it stitches a dream - I must like them as I stitched up the whole of VoHRH in NPI and I have kitted up the Shores of HRH in NPI and those use a ton of silk and a pretty big stitching commitments - NPI is very serviceable and the colours are nice - I just prefer the over dyed floss for the interest it brings to a piece of stitching. I think I prefer stitching with silk over cotton - but prefer cotton over dyed to solid colour silk - I guess it would have to be how or what the piece is and what I wanted it the end piece to look like. I still don't think I am being clear.
For me and my stitching - the only floss I do not like is linen floss and will never ever if I can help it ever stitch with a linen floss again- ever!! Now, that was clear.

I wanted to have a clip on today's post and so I found this one of Alice Faye and so I am putting it up - It is from "On the Avenue" - 1937 - a movie I talked about a few days back.

Just a reminder I will not be posting nor emailing until next Wednesday/Thursday. I am taking a break from my regular life and doing some fun stuff - not sure what exactly but there are some things lined up and I am sure others will follow. So do not worry as I will return.

Thank you for stopping by and for your kind comments - I do appreciate them!!!

Take care,

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

S.A.B.L.E. my Favorite "FUR"

GR&DF thank you so much for your kind comments about my Dad's sampler. It is a super piece and well worth the time to stitch it up. When I look at older samplers and read the lines stitched I often wonder about the stitcher and what they where thinking or why they where stitching that particular verse or the words. I so enjoy family samplers or pieces meant to be given away - or should I just say I love samplers!!

Last night I was working on an upcoming exchange piece. In addition to stitching I was stash diving as I have shifted my whole brain and thoughts about my next piece - Alpha Birds Sampler by Sheepish Designs. I had originally thought when I first got all bothered about stitching this piece, that I wanted to shift the floss to Belle Soie. At that time I pulled the DMC conversion to see the colours that where recommended. I liked the BS choices but I not very excited. So last night I hauled out all the WDW, CC and GAST I have and started to rethink the floss for the piece. I ended up pulling GAST and CC floss and am very happy with my colour choices. Now I need to decide on the linen. I am sure this will be a start on my upcoming vacation. I am determined to finish my exchange piece first!! As you know I really love BS, and I think it was that the colours just weren't hitting me just right for this piece - it is also charted for NPI - but NPI is not a favorite of mine and I would much rather stitch using an over dyed floss and be happy with the colours. Talking about upcoming projects - over the weekend we ran to Joanne's and I got all the different DMC's - so that I can see the colours for the next project on my list after the Alpha piece - the Mary Beale Sampler Wreath - this will be a great piece!! It always amazes me that with all the DMC bobbins I already have that I always seem to need so many more!!

Since I am talking about samplers.... yesterday I got two packets in the mail of some charts I got from eBay and a stitcher who was de-stashing - hence the title.... here is snap of what came...

two OOP Sheepish Designs, two OOP Chester County charts and a Mary Beale card of ornaments also OOP - These OOP are just killing me at how unavailable everything I want is turning out to be!!!!!

I don't know if you have read or heard, but Kathy Barrick will be closing the doors over at Carriage House Samplings. A very sad announcement but I am sure she will go on to bigger and better things. She will slowly close out with continuing to sell to shops and distributors until July 1, 2010, then will sell the remaining stock at her etsy shop until December 31, 2010 and close permanently on January 1, 2011. This means that if there is any chart you are wanting to get you better get it before they also turn OOP.

I wanted to leave you today with a snap from the top of our hill where we walk the who-hounds...

This is looking east out over the Mission and towards the Oakland hills - our hill is covered at the moment with these lovely yellow flowered bush/trees.

There you go sport's fans!! Thank you again for your comments and for stopping by! Do come again!!

Take care,

Monday, March 29, 2010

Another SF Weekend!!

GR&DF - well, another weekend quickly over and once again we sit on the precipice of the week. I am sitting here looking at only a three day week. A three day week - why that's crazy you say... ahhh, but it isn't as I have taken off Thursday and Friday and next Monday, Tuesday AND Wednesday. The reason being is that I took no time off but the few days around Christmas last year and my PTO (Personal Time Off - we don't call it Vacation any longer) is stacking up. If I don't take some of it then it will cap off and will stop accruing. So all I could think of was to wrap some "days off" around the Easter weekend - and even though I had planned to barricade the door and sit and stitch for a week the time is already getting eaten up by outside forces beyond my control!!

Over the weekend I did accomplish the finish of the Memorial sampler - I actually had to stop Friday night and put it down so that I could finish it on Saturday. Here are some snaps.....

2-4-2010 / 3-27-2010
Memorial Sampler - Midsummer Night Designs
36ct LL Vintage something - using the rec. GAST & CC Floss

Sorry about how wonky this piece is. I took these in the middle of the afternoon yesterday and still can't seem to get a decent snap!! I am also not as happy with the word spacing at the bottom - as the space is a sort of squeeze and I wish I had started two thread higher...I still may go back and frog all the words..... but then again I might just leave it - I haven't decided yet.

On Saturday we ran around to quite a few Estate/House sales - we even stopped in on some friends who where having a sale - they are moving to NY so everything was for sale!!
We picked up this -

Our friends who where selling up actually had two of these but by the time we got there one had already sold. They gave some killer parties and would serve both red and green Margarita's!! This will be a super addition to any festive occasion!! I also picked up a few other bits at other places...

Here is the haul - 3 old frames, a book I wanted to read, a nice older pamphlet about the California Missions, a nice little Italian Icon, an old tomato, a cute little china Teapot pin cushion, a Mason's "Vista" farmers cup, a great older sock egg and another super linen tea towel of the attractions in London.

Yesterday started off with breakfast at our usually GS (greasy spoon) place - Eddy's.
Outside was this sweet puppy...

This is such a dog friendly city you see this many times all over!!
This puppy was totally sweet and of the non-barky variety!

After breakfast we then ran over to the little farmers market on Grove and I got these snaps...

We picked up some of these tulips - and they are just lovely!!

here is snap of the other things we got...

The honey is really delicious and is from sage flowers around Turlock down in the Valley - it is a beautiful pale colour. We got the bread at the liberty Cafe over in Bernal Heights - I turned the cauliflower into this..

a tasty Gratin of Cauliflower - from a recipe of Julia Child's.
Over at the Liberty Cafe I got these snaps...

We parked the car and walked past this display of colour - the guy that was selling these was sitting in his van with his bong and was totally enjoying the lovely day!! Outside of the cafe is a patio area and there are these....

...beautiful wisteria everywhere - I love these flowers and even though they are a very destructive vine - the floral display is magnificent!!! I also got this snap of other goodies inside the cafe...

I'm not sure what these are but they were really great looking in the case.

Well, my dears I have droned on enough today and will let you go. Thank you so much for stopping by and do come again!!

Take care,

Friday, March 26, 2010

Chica Chica Boom Chic!

GR&DF such wonderful comments and emails - am I bursting with a big heart of love or what!!! Choking me up on a Friday is not fair - but I do appreciate every single comment, email and good thought sent my way. I know that the email has been completely eradicated by a super group of friends out there - and as Marnie put it "Mean People Suck."
Enough of that we are moving on....

The blue tree was identified not only by Alison but by a friend here at work - he is a minor horticulturalist and yard designer/gardener type and it is a Ceanothus - they come in three very distinct sizes - Tree, Bush and low growing spreading vine - all have this vibrant blue flower or they can also be white. Many folks thought it might be a Jacaranda - but this tree the flower shape was a bit less bell shaped and more cluster like.
So many things I don't know - keeps life interesting!!

The mail brought a wonderful exchange package from the group of us doing the Easter exchange. It came from Cathy and totally made my day yesterday!! Here is a snap of everything...

Cathy stitched a super "chickie" mattress pin cushion and "chickie" fob - aren't they totally sweet!!! The package included some super treats - a beautiful piece of "Earthen" linen from PTP, a skein of Gloriana silk, a carrot of chocolates and two really cute Easter decorations - a super thoughtful parcel for Easter. Here is a close up the stitched lovelies...

The pin cushion is stitched on 40 ct Antique white using DMC floss. the chart is PS #107 "Just Hatched." The finish piece is surrounded by a lovely pink ribbon - this couldn't be cuter!!!
Thank you so much Cathy!!!

The mail also brought another eBay purchase
- this very inexpensive 4 chart booklet of antique samplers -

These are really nice samplers and yet the person who charted DMC conversion must have been colorblind - as they are all very brightly charted - I know, I know, that originally they would have been bright and maybe that was what they were going for - but you know me and my mantra "Grey, Beige, Brown and Black" - extra dingy!! I am certain I can rechart the colours for a more beat up and aged look!! :)

The flickers last night were a double feature of Carmen Miranda - that Brazilian Bombshell!! The first film was "Something for the Boys" - 1944 - starring a bunch of character actors from 20th Century - Carmen Miranda, Phil Silvers, Vivian Blaine and Michael O'Shea. This was one of the handful of films that Carmen did and as in all her pictures she was once again a singing and dancing dynamo - who tore through the English language with a machete for laughs. The second film was "If I;m Lucky" - 1946 - starring the same group of actors but this time without the technicolor. It was another light film with musical numbers but the major difference was it was without the benefit of color and a Black and White Carmen was very different. After the war 20th Century didn't know what to do with her and they did less and less and nothing in color and Carmen needs the color to pop - I enjoy these films for the 40's and would recommend them to anyone for just an entertaining romp and some great musical numbers by both Carmen and Vivian. Both films feature a very young Perry Como and his voice in both is deep and silk another reason to see them. Corinna mentioned a film from the other evening on TCM "Stage Door" 1937 - a film I love and was also watching!!

Here is a compilation of Carmen film clips - both color and B&W - with a hip shaking recording of her singing "Chica Chica Boom Chic" - I dare you to try and sit still!!

I think that's about it for today sports fans. Thank you again fro your support and comments - have a great weekend and do stop by again!!!

Take care,

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Is that a Blue Tree???

GR&DF once again your very kind comments are making my morning!!! AND I opened up the mails this morning to one very sweet email from a non-blogger from Pittsburgh - Hi Cindy - that was very sweet!!

I do love getting email and nice email is the best. Last week I did get an EVIL email - but after much mulling over and a quick delete button I am not going to even go there - but rise above such slings and arrows. Rico thinks I shouldn't and that I should call them out... and usually I would just let loose... but I want to keep this a nice Blog and if an individual is gonna be like that then what can I do - moving on!!

On the way home yesterday I thought I should get a snap of this tree....

How great is this - a blue tree. There are a few of them along a ridge up on Diamond Heights above the city. Near to our Safeway grocery store. These blue flowers last a long time so it will be there for quite a while. Yesterdays pink flowering tree I think has been identified by Sharon in St Louis - as a flowering crab apple - and that works for me as these do look like apple blossoms. I wonder what this blue one might be? Any guesses? It is rather bushy so It might just be some way over sized shrub- no fragrance at all - or none that my schnoz could discern.

Last night the flicker was an action packed "entertainment" only kind of flick - "2012" - starring a bunch of stars.... John Cusack, Amanda Peet, Chitwetel Eiofor, Oliver Platt, Woody Harrelson (very funny and sort of made the film for me) Danny Glover ( a wonderful actor that was total underused and wasted) and a sort of bit part for George Segal. This was a too long movie with lots of pieces/stories strung together on nail biting explosions and packed with "close call " moments. With all that said - I really enjoyed it and for just CGI efforts alone they should get an award. So, for a total popcorn film and shear entertainment - not much story, or I should say not much of a believable story it is a winner. I did love how LA kind of slid into the Pacific - can't wait for that to happen!! :)

That's about it for today sports fans! Thanks again for your comments and kind emails!!

Take care,

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Warm Weather Treats

GR&DF thank you for your kind words about Rico's floral endeavours. Being able to pick out and put together a bunch of flowers is something I have never been able to achieve and he accomplishes this with such ease. We are very lucky to have access to the Flower market. Especially since they will allow the public in to buy. Some flower markets require you to have a buying badge to be able to buy, but this one doesn't. I do know you get a discount with a badge and it has it tax breaks - but the badges are meant for flower retailers and decorators. I think the Flower market is especially nice in the fall leading up to Christmas - there are just piles and piles of beautiful winter flowers, plants and greenery.

It has gotten very warm here in San Francisco and so with warm weather we get to have local treats!! Which include the lovely flowering things around town. For the past few days we have passed these on the way home and I have wanted to stop and get a few snaps.... well yesterday I did.... and here a couple of pretty pictures -

They are short and stumpy little trees - but just a profusion of gorgeous spring flowers.... They are also a buzz with little honey bees a buzzing and working each flower. I stood up in the middle of the branches and tried to get a snap of a bee - but what I got was....

a pretty picture from inside the floral mass - there is a sweetish smell - not very strong, but very pleasant when you get close to these trees. A really wonderful harbinger of spring!!

We stopped to get tree pictures after making a stop at a local tradition we enjoy -

Mitchell's Ice Cream - since it was warmish we got in the mood for some of this creamy deliciousness!!! I even got a snap of one of the cases where the already packed flavours are...

We ended up getting -

It is/was simply delicious!! All creamy and butterscotchy!! We don't stop too often but when we do it is always delicious!!

The stitching last night was on both and exchange and on the Memorial sampler - I do thank you for your kind words about the way this sampler is coming along. I was just realizing last night that the 7th anniversary of my fathers passing is this Saturday - so I am going to try and finish it on Saturday - it might just happen!!

The flicker last night was a precode Depression Era downer - "Faithless" - 1932 - starring Tallulah Bankhead , Robert Montgomery and Hugh Herbert. In "Faithless" she plays an enormously rich girl that has no idea that she is draining her bank accounts with her outrageous spending - so she of course she goes broke while all the time running to and from Robert Montgomery. After having to sell everything and being totally broke and homeless she becomes the mistress of a man with money but not of her class. Eventually she ends up back with Robert Montgomery - but things go sour and she has to "Hit the streets" to get some money - this was pretty racy for 32 and was trying to show to just what lengths one will go to for one they love. This seemed like a Warner Brothers gritty film of the the time but was made over at MGM. After this film did not do very well Tallulah went back to NY and the stage where she was enormously popular. She did not return to Hollywood until 1944 when she played in Alfred Hitchcock's "Lifeboat" a really wonderful film!! If you like gritty period pieces this might be a film you would enjoy. It was very nice to see a young Tallulah but she was not very believable in the role - Constance Bennett or Kay Francis would have been much better - but hey, the picked Tallulah.

I got a bit of stash in the mail yesterday - I have been shopping on eBay -

Just some nice older sampler charts - I was running low :) dont'cha know!! and I even picked up a great chart of the Ponce Inlet Light House. This lighthouse is in Daytona Beach and I have never seen a chart of it. I am thinking this would be nice for my mom for Christmas - its never to early to get a jump on Christmas stitching!!

There you go sports fans. Thanks for stopping by and for taking a few moments to leave a comment - I do appreciate them!!

Do stop by again!

Take care,

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Stitchin' an Angel

GR&DF you are really the best - and such nice words about the Easter Basket exchange. I was lucky to find the Longeberger basket - they are really nice and wonderfully handmade, dated and signed. I think this one was dated 1988 - if I remember correctly. Sometimes my ideas do not turn out, but I think this one worked nicely.

When I got home yesterday I thought about the lack of snaps from the party - and the big flower arrangements are still there so I took a snap of the one on the dinning room table - It is holding up rather well - and you should have a peek at Rico's handiwork....

Not the most neat of snaps - with some of the silver still sitting out, leftover beer and a bowl - but look past that stuff and get a eye full of the blue and lime colours we went with for this party. We usually pick a different colour for each party - that way we don't get bored with the way things look - and it mixes it up for our guests - and we get to try all sorts of different flowers and plants.

On the stitching front I worked some more of the Memorial Sampler so I thought I ought to get a snap for you to see - it has been a while....

This is a totally craptastic snap of this sampler, but with artificial light and a flash it is the best I could do last night. As you can see I have finished up the right side flower/bird part and the black for the most part is finished - except the handles on the urns. The little animal band is also completed and I started to work on the second angel towards the end the evening - he looks kind of odd at this point. I have the words all charted out and so there really isn't much left on this to do. I already have my list of the next four things I am going to stitching - and I am itching to get started, but I am gonna finish this first.

The flickers last night where two very different movies. the first was - "Eye of the Needle" - 1981 - starring Donald Sutherland, Kate Nelligan and Christopher Cazenove. This movie was adapted from a Ken Follett novel and was pretty good. Set in 1940 England Donald Sutherland plays a Nazi Spy. The story flashes forward to the eve of the Normandy Invasion and Sutherland's character is wrecked on an isolated island off the coast of Scotland trying to get back to Berlin with important invasion information. I enjoyed the movie and if you like the spy thriller type movie you might also. There where some slow spots but over all well worth a look. The second film of the evening was "On the Avenue" - 1937 - starring Alice Faye Dick Powell, Madeline Carroll, George Barbier and The Ritz Brothers. One of the first big musical pictures from the newly formed studio 20th Century Fox lead by Darryl F. Zanuck. A very realist movie that Zanuck insisted on - so that the movie goer would experience it like going to the theatre - very unlike the Busby Berkley extravaganzas over at MGM. The music was provided by Irving Berlin with six great new songs - one of the songs was a parody piece called "Slumming on Park Avenue" - and you knew I would have a clip... (not the best clip, but the only version I could find)

There you go sports fans. Thank you so much for your kind comments and for stopping by. Do come again!!

Take Care,

Monday, March 22, 2010

A Busy weekend and a Basket Arrives!!

GR&DF - well the weekend is over and I am still worn out. The party went on until way after 1 am - and then after everyone finally left I was still up later than that getting things cleaned up or at least washed out - I can not stand walking into a total mess and so I try and get some of the cleaning done before dragging myself off to bed. We were really busy all day with a run to the store, and a run downtown to the Flower Market - I forgot my camera which sucks because this place is just lovely - We usually make a run to the FM before a party as you can get very fresh flowers and the assortment is huge! I did get a snap of Rico putting together on of the arrangements -

.... and this was the only snap I got all day!! and evening!! I just got wrapped up in pulling it all together and forgot to take any pictures. My job for all our parties is to keep the table filled and make sure the auxiliary tables are also kept up. Rico is in charge of the liquor. We served quite a few things - main table - cheese platter with 5 different types of cheese, spinach dip, taquitos, two kinds of miniature quiche - Florentine and Lorraine, crab cakes, ham puffs, veggie and fruit trays and miniature egg rolls. Set up out on another table was a big bowl of Guacamole and bowl of salsa with white and yellow corns chips. On a further table was a big bowl of cashews. It was a lot of fun but also a ton of work that I paid for yesterday. After getting the house back together and cleaned up I just sat around being a big lazy lump recuperating for most of the afternoon and evening.

I saw on Tracy's blog that the exchange I sent had arrived. This exchange is a small group of us that are exchanging for different Holidays - this was an Easter Exchange and when I signed up I knew exactly what I wanted to make - some sort of Easter Basket - and spent weeks looking for the right kind of basket to use. Here is a snap of the piece I made...

This great older Longaberger hanging basket turned up at an Estate sale and worked out perfectly for this exchange. I stitched a pyn keepe from the PS Book April using the recommended DMC Floss. I filled the basket with some Easter treats. And here is a snap of the whole exchange I sent...

There you go sports fans. Thanks for stopping by - do come again!!

Take care,

Friday, March 19, 2010

A Friday Post

GR&DF welcome back to BSS for a Friday round up!! First let me say Howdy to all the new readers of the Blog AND Welcome to the new followers - I hope you enjoy reading my scribblings and blathering - that on many occasions go off in all sorts of different directions!!

I talked to my sister last night - and all she had to say about that scrumptious chili-cheese dog photo - was it looked like a heart attack on a bun - ahhhh yes, but so delicious!! I often will toggle back and forth between chili and cole slaw on a hot dog!! and I love me some cole slaw - especially on a BBQ sandwich you just can't beat it!! Can you tell I am about the food this morning. For some reason I am really ready for lunch already - and all I brought was some shrimp fried rice leftovers - and some fruit and a couple of cookies - not the best lunch and I am afraid I will be starving even after that meager repast.

Not too much going on at all - no stitchy snaps and it was a Western evening on TCM - I did catch "My Darling Clementine" -1946 - starring Henry Fonda, Victor Mature, Linda Darnell and Walter Brennan. Now, you know I am not a fan of the Western Film genre - but there are a few of them that I really like and this is one of them - a true classic piece of celluloid with top notch direction by John Ford. Beautifully shot -with great panoramic exteriors and intimately lit interiors. Highly recommended - you should make the effort!!

The last few days we have been getting the house ready for a cocktail party tomorrow night - and you wouldn't think it would be that much trouble..... just getting the regular stuff that sits around all the time put up and out of sight is not much fun. We made a trip to Bev-Mo for the liquor on the way home yesterday. Tonight is the trip to CostCo for the eats/snacks. Sunday will be a clean up day and after that I am gonna sit around like a tired lump -

Here's hoping you have a great weekend! Thanks for stopping by and as always I do thank you for your kind comments!!

Take care,

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Thursday Hounds

GR&DF - Yes - it does seem that as we get older that ...... it is one great toboggan ride to the grave.... I just love that!!! Thank you Marjorie!!

Last night while I was trying to stitch and not just pass into a comatose state with needle in hand -I looked over and there where two of the who-hounds all sweet together.... and of course my camera was at hand.......

It has taken all these weeks for these two to get to the point of touching. With the Peach it is another story.... she has gotten over the "no touchy" phase - to a point - and will at least let Lolly brush against her or give the all mighty butt sniff - so important for every occasion, but that is about it - no snuggle, no share, no love - she can be very stubborn!

I did make it over to the Farmers market at lunch yesterday. I picked up so more asparagus, fingerling's, lemons and krack-korn - but passed on taking any snaps - as there was really nothing new to see. I did however stop on the way back to the office and picked up a chili-cheese dog -

and thought I would share this culinary miracle with you all - in the back you can see I had some delicious crunchy Cheetos to go with the dog - such a well rounded lunch!!

The flickers last night where on TCM and it was the 2nd installment of the Ginger Rogers Month Long Tribute. The flicks focused on the year 1933 when she was in 10 movies!! Let one of the pampered "stars" of today try and accomplish that!! The first one was "42nd Street" - 1933 - starring Ginger Rogers, Guy Kibee, George Brent, Una Merkel and Dick Powell - The film is about out of work hoofers looking for a job - finding an "angel" to back a show - when at the last moment the star gets hurt and one of the chorus is elevated to the star position and the show is saved - great film with some wonderful musical numbers. The second film of the evening was "Gold Diggers of 1933" -1933 - starring Ginger Rogers, Joan Blondell, Aline MacMahon, Ruby Keeler, Dick Powell and Guy Kibee. Another depression era theater film with a group of out of work hoofers trying to get into a show. A film with some wonderful musical numbers - the first big number opens up the film - it is big Busby extravaganza of a number that is pretty famous - with Ginger Rogers wearing a load of gold coins singing "We're in the money" .......

There you go sports fans!! Thanks for stopping by. Do come again.

Take care,

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A Wednesday Post

GR&DF I am very happy that you enjoyed the snaps yesterday - I do love visiting the Farmers market and seeing what is available - as the seasons change and the year rolls by (faster and faster the older I get I notice!!) the fruits and vegetables that are in season are so much better than things trucked and flown into the Supermarkets. - Oh well, today the Farmers Market will get another visit at lunch time so there may be more snaps tomorrow - I know we need lemons, and some more asparagus - I think I will try that roasting method.....and some more little fingerling potatoes - and of course some more crack-korn!!

I heard form Leeanne that the mail art I made has arrived. For the life of me I can not find a single snap of that sucker on my camera or in my albums - being a ding sometimes I forget to get a picture - so I will have to snag one from the Blog after she posts - I got really worried as it took that thing more than 10 days to arrive - oh well better to get there than not!

Stitching was still focused on exchanges last night.

Both Donna and Marial asked about the earthquake out here - was there one? I am clueless. We usually have many and I mean there can be dozens in a 24 hour period - small to moderate quakes daily and unless I am sitting still and feel the house swaying - I am oblivious to any quakes going on - we are fine and all is well.

There have been quite a few movies over the past 5 days - Lets begin with two Kay Francis flicks - I really like her and her style of acting. At the time - the 1930's - she was the reining Queen of Warner Brothers and made tons of films - she was unseated by Bette Davis. The first of her films I saw was "Comet Over Broadway" - 1938 - starring Kay Francis, Ian Hunter and Donald Crisp. This was one of the later films that was less than stellar and was being used by the studio to oust her from her contract. Kay had a speech impediment and it was hard for her to say "R" words or words with the letter "r" in them. During the height of her career when she was making a bazillion dollars for the studio the would rewrite and fix the scripts so that she had fewer "R"'s to say but as her career waned they did this less and less and even wrote and rewrote the lines to make them harder for her to say. But, she was a trooper an forged ahead doing everything she was asked including this melodramatic tripe. Although Kay is great as always and very self sacrificing - it does become a bit silly towards the end.

The second Kay film was "Secrets of an Actress" - 1938 - starring Kay Francis, George Brent and Ian Hunter. Made the same year as the first. In this film she has a much better script with many clever lines - of the two see the second but both are worth a look just to see Kay.

The next film is a documentary called "Get Bruce" - 1999 - starring Bruce Vilanch - and a bunch of the stars he ghost writes for. Now, I had no idea what to expect as I usually find Bruce Vilanch a bit tiresome - but this film has thrown him in a whole new light - or at least to me. It is amazing how hard he works and how much he goes and if it weren't for him most if not all of the ceremonies that include actors and actress's would be really dull affairs - this film shows him working, working ,working always at work and on call to the Hollywood needy and greedy. They also interview his mother and she is totally delightful!! I would recommend this film for nothing but to see the back work to the working of Hollywood.

The next three films are all WWII films - and are all great in there own way - First up is "Patton" - 1970 - starring George C Scott and Karl Malden. What a superior film!! A tour de force for Scott as he seemed to nail the character of Patton and his living to fight and how he felt towards the men under him and the war itself.

The next two films where made during the war and it is interesting to see the difference in the interpretation of war and WWII specifically then and how Hollywood portrayed it in later films. First up is "Air Force" - 1943 - starring John Ridgely, Gig Young and Arthur Kennedy - the film is about a Bomber squad on route to Hickam Field on December 6, 1941.... flying into the aftermath of the attack on Pearl Harbor the squad scatters to emergency fields all over the Hawaiian Islands and is finally reunited at Hickam. Then the movie shifts to Mary Ann one of the bombers and her crew and their adventure trying to get to Manila via Wake Island. A very good if not great film about the crew and the war in the air!! The second and final film of the day (do I hear a sigh of relief out there??) was "Action in the North Atlantic" -1942 - starring Humphrey Bogart, Raymond Massey and Alan Hale. This film starts off with a bang and the sinking/ramming of a freighter!! Then the films shifts to a new Liberty Ship and the merchant marine corps who where the unsung heroes of WWII - most of the action takes place on the sea - and the bulk of the film is about a convoy of freighters -including the new Liberty Ship - and them running into a wolf pack of German submarines. An excellent film with top notch acting. The special effects are a bit weak compared to the films of today but for 1943 they are pretty good.

There you go sports fans -

Have a great St. Patrick's day!!

Thanks for stopping by!! Do come again.

Take care,

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A Bit more Weekend Stuff....

GR&DF I am glad that my cake catastrophe story gave all a little giggle - I can totally see the humor now, but on Saturday night I was less than jovial. What a good idea to make cup cakes - I wish I had thought of it - but at the time that idea never crossed my mind. As you can probably tell by now once my mind is set in a direction - I rarely, and I mean rarely - like never - veer off course, but just keep plugging along until either I have a total meltdown or whatever it is works like I want it to!! Pretty stubborn, I must say!

Our trip to the Farmers Market was very nice - Sunday turned out to be a beautiful bright and sunny day with a slight breeze. Here are some snaps.....

Here is our park of nub trees - I remember my first trip to Paris when I was in High School - it was early spring and many of the parks had rows and rows of trees that looked just like this - all nubbley and barren.

There where some lovely flowers for sale - these great red ones - and...

some gorgeous Hyacinth - the smell coming off these buckets was simply spectacular!!!

and the asparagus was just piled up everywhere - so we got a bunch and had it steamed with pork chops for dinner and it was a good as it looked!!

This table of greens was so overwhelming - and so green. We are coming off of winter and there where many open spaces where there should have been tents set up, but the crops are just not in yet. Here are some snaps of our purchases...

A bunch of asparagus, some great little fingerling potatoes and nice little cauliflower and my "crack" snack - Kettle Korn!! We also picked up..

A dozen organic, free range brown eggs - now in my pea brain I like the brown eggs better than white. I know there is absolutely no difference it is just my preference - and at only $2.50 a dozen you can't beat the price!!

The weekend stitching was focused on my Easter Exchange - that I got into the mail yesterday. I think it turned out rather nice and do hope my partner likes what I am sending her. I will post when I hear that it has arrived safely - which should be in a day or so.

Last night I was stitching on another exchange piece so no snaps of that - just yet -

There you go sports fans - I do thank you for you kind comments and for the time you take to leave them!! Stop by tomorrow if you get the chance!!

Take care,

Monday, March 15, 2010

More Weekend Adventures!!!!

GR&DF I do thank you for the kind words about my less than stellar snaps of SF. The Bay area is a really lovely place to live and there are so many really interesting things to see. Any suggestions of places you want me to visit and take some snaps of? I have lived here for the last 15 years and seem to always go and do the same thing - that which is comfortable is good - and the unknown is often odd. We try and get to different things but it just seems that we tend to do the same things over and over.

There is lots to post so I will do it chronologically.... starting with the mail on Friday - and sweet it was. A while back I helped out a fellow stitcher, Nicola, with a chart she was wanting. I feel we should always help where we can - I have a pass it on kind of attitude. I have gotten much help and wonderful things from folks out there in Blog land and I am truly blessed with some wonderful readers that have become friends - this makes me want to help and pass on things when I can...... so on Friday, totally unexpected a package arrived from the UK (and you know what a real Anglophile I am) I got really excited!! When I got home and opened it up I had been gifted a great tea towel for sending on a little bit of kindness -

Not only did Nicola send me this great towel but she also included and great skein of brown Needleworks floss - Thank you so much !!!! Also in the mail was some more stash.... I know I did need any of it, but wanted it!!!

I couldn't pass on the PS charts - and break up my ever growing set - and the Jenny Bean charts are too cute not to have this, the third in the series... and A flag with the state quilt blocks - I have wanted this for the longest time!! Yes, I know, all rationalized for my continued sanity, but hey, it works for me!!

On Saturday, we did our usual running of the errands - and not the sales - and in going from store to store, Rico mentioned how he would like a Pineapple Upside Cake. Now, this was a cake my Mom made all the time while I was growing up so I am very familiar with it, but I have made very few - and none since I moved out here, but hey how hard could it be.... famous last words! first I found a basic recipe - and then got together all the ingredients...

and then started the construction of "the cake mess from Hell!!!" Mixing the batter for the required 2 or so mins....

created a golden mix of delicious cake batter - I do love some cake batter!! Then melting the butter in the skillet, adding the brown sugar, stirring until I had a gorgeous brown slurry of sugar deliciousness - and then arranging the pineapple, cherries and walnuts I had the pan ready for the batter....

Then I started to pour the batter onto the prepared fruit... and ended up with this cake.....

Now, you are asking how did I get from a 12 inch skillet shaped cake to a 13x9 pan sized cake....
In my silly ignorance I had made a recipe for a 13x9 pan and not skillet size cake. Now here I am with a full skillet of cake that was sure to overrun and cause a mess in the oven AND what was I to do with the rest of the batter - as frugal as I am I certainly wasn't pouring it down the drain!! I ended up hauling out the 13x9 and melting more butter in this new pan and using what was left of the brown sugar to make the slurry - while the butter was melting in the new pan I carefully scooped out what cake batter I could from the skillet and then pulled out the pineapple and cherries and what was left of the brown sugar slurry - I eventually poured in to the new pan - this was a totally messy procedure and I had cake batter all over me, the floor and counter by the time I was ready to put the now new cake into the oven. It was ready in about 45 mins and not the hour it was supposed to take and then when I was popping it out of the pan about half the pineapple slices stuck so it isn't as pretty as it could be, but it is pretty tasty and in the end that is what matters!!

Yesterday started off with a nice breakfast at...

where I had - Huevos Rancheros....

and Rico had Chorizo and eggs...

From breakfast we went to the Civic Center Farmers Market.......

This post is going on a bit long today - so I will leave the visit to the Farmers market until tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping, do come again!!

Tale care,