Friday, July 30, 2010

2 Stops, some Stash and Summer Supper

GR&DF today I will share both the stop we made on Wednesday and the stop we made yesterday on the way home in the late afternoon.

On Wednesday we stopped on 24th Street - in the Mission - and picked up some fruit at our favorite stand. I didn't get any at the Farmer's Market as it seemed that the fruit I kept seeing was all very ripe. Rico likes fruit on the unripe or green side so everything was to far gone for his taste, and when things are not too soft they tend to last until I can get to another market for some more. While we stopped for fruit we also ran into our favorite Bakery - La Victoria - and of course I got some shots of the pastries there -

some great macaroons....

There was a ton of delicious looking cupcakes....

Here are some the treats we picked up.....

Yesterday on the way home we went through the Castro and stopped at the little nursery/plant shop there called Hortica - 566 Castro Street. They have a really nice selection of things. I got a few shots of the back garden....

There was a large selection of beautiful Geraniums...

I was trying to get a snap of the butterfly's - you can't really tell but there are some in this shot...

just a nice shot of the overall back garden..

It is such a nice space in the city, and the small patio restaurant right next door always has the nicest music wafting across into this back space.

The mail brought some current stash I had to have - from two of my favorite designers....

I figure I would get them at some point so why wait! I love the PS chart releases - they are so very cute - and I even like the 2010 Santa card. The BBD #6 is a beauty - I am so liking this series and cant wait to have them all so I can get a start on this great sampler.

Dinner last night was a very reminiscent one from my past - of course I got a snap - you know me and the silly pictures I am always taking....

I sauteed some summer squash and onions, made some jasmine rice and fried up a mess of chicken and delicious okra. Rico had a single piece of the okra and poo pooed it - just more for me!! I made enough that there is leftovers for lunch today!! Ruth asked how I fry up my okra and chicken - well, I do the okra first. I cut the tip and the top off and then slice the pods into pieces. These pieces I throw into a bowl of butter milk (if I have it in the house) I didn't last night so I made some fake buttermilk - I curdled some milk with vinegar. I then dredged the buttermilk soaked pieces in a dry mix of flour, cornmeal, some Cajun spice stuff ( Tony Chachere's) and pepper. Then drop these pieces it in the hot grease and cook until brown. The chicken I do a bit different - I take the pieces and soak them in buttermilk and again last night it was a fake curdled milk soak. Then the dredge for chicken is - just all-purpose flour only spiced up with cumin, garlic salt, pepper, cayenne and a bit of curry powder - or whatever I can put my hands on in the spice cupboard. I dredge each piece in the dry mix and let these sit for a few mins to dry off a bit then fry individually in the hot grease. - Very simple cooking, but mighty tasty!!

There you go sports fans. Thanks for dropping by and do come again!!

Take care,

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Farmers Market Snaps

GR&DF yesterday was my weekly visit to the Civic Center Farmers Market and I got a bunch of snaps to share -

Walking over there I pass the Orpheum Theatre and I always take a moment to admire this great old building - built in 1926 it is a grand old space.

This is a snap pf the ceiling on the outside space you walk through to go inside.

I usually start at the Market Street end and work my way towards City Hall - looking past the tents of things I was amazed to see.....

...the UN Fountain working - this fountain is more often not going than going - and yesterday in the bright cool sunshine it was splashing and shooting merrily along. If you go HERE you can read a bunch of stuff about the Civic Center/Tenderloin Area.

.. and the flower guy had some beautiful flowers....

... there was just piles of corn - it seems almost like a bumper crop this year!!

... I picked up some of these lovely tomatoes and cukes.....

... these where just calling out for a snap- the mix of yellow and green was striking..

.. and at the other end a flower guy there had some great sunflowers...

... how could I pass this pile of red peppers without getting a snap!!

I also picked up some string beans, ginger root, lemons, Brussels sprouts and some okra. Tonight will be a fried chicken and veg dinner!! Totally a summer menu from my childhood!!

That's about it for today - stop by tomorrow for some snaps of our 24th Street stop on the way home yesterday.

Thanks again for stopping by - do come again!!

Take care,

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Movie Wednesday

GR&DF, again I must thank you for your kind and supportive comments for yesterdays post. Coming in and opening up such nice words always starts off the morning so nicely!!

I think today I need to do a few movie reviews - as always there was lots of DVD's and TCM played on the Boob Tube -

Let's do them chronologically - starting off with a real classic Film Noir - "Key Largo" - 1948 - starring Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Edward G Robinson, Claire Trevor and Lionel Barrymore. I thought I had seen this flick a long time ago, but after getting part way through I realized that I had either wiped it from my brain or I had never seen it. The basic story line has some gangsters held up off season in a Hotel on Key Largo holding the owner, his daughter in law and a visiting army buddy hostage during a hurricane. There are some very subtle performances - especially Bacall's - very good without much dialogue. Then there is Trevor who plays Robinson's "drinking" girl friend - she was as good as it gets and won an Academy Award for this performance. Between Barrymore and Robinson there was very little left of the scenery after they chewed their way through every scene - good, effective, but sometimes a bit much. I enjoyed the film and at 100 mins well worth a look. It was the last of the four movies that Bogart and Bacall did together.

Here is the Trailer for the film -

The next film was a much more current piece - "How About You..." - 2007 - starring Hayley Atwell, Vanessa Redgrave, Joss Ackland, Brenda Fricker and Imelda Staunton. The film came from a short story by Maeve Binchy - a really wonderful story teller/writer. Revolving around a retirement home - most of the residents have left for the Holidays leaving the 4 worst when the owner must leave to take care of her mother. This leaves a single, new, young, inexperienced caregiver in charge - over the course of a few days they must all come to terms with each other and their pasts. A great little film with a good ending.

The last film for today I saw last night - "Percy Jackson & The Olympians:the Lightning Thief" - 2010 - starring Logan Lerman, Brandon Jackson, Pierce Brosnan, Rosario Dawson, Kevin McKidd and Uma Thurman. I had some really high hopes for this film - and as usual the Hollywood machine took an excellent book with a great story line and "adapted" it for the screen - what that means is they kept the title, and characters and a bit of the story and made a movie from that. I really enjoyed the books!! and what I saw was not the story from the books for the most part. There was some very good to excellent CGI and there was some nice acting - especially Kevin McKidd and Uma Thurman - top notch!!- It did seem a bit long for what it was - and if they hadn't added new story stuff and taken away existing story stuff it might not have seemed so long. This was a total "wait for the DVD" type of film and I am certainly glad I waited. If there is a sequel - there are 5 books in the series - I will again "wait for the DVD" and not bother to see it theatrically.

There you go sports fans - thanks again for stopping by, do come again!!

Take care,

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

"Garden Path" and some Commenting

GR&DF I am humbled by all the kind comments yesterday regarding my framing efforts. Warming this cold morning with such sweet thoughts makes this old Blog a real joy!! Thank You!

I wanted to start off with a new stitching snap - since I have focused most of my stitching attentions on exchange stitching there have been very few snaps of any current WIP. If you cast back your mind you may remember that I am working on "The Garden Path" sampler by Sheepish Designs - and here is a an updated snap of the progress -

This great little sampler is coming right along. I really enjoy samplers - the traditional motifs and the sometimes quirky bits make these really charming. I have really fallen for the Tennessee sampler charts that are out there and have collected a few to stitch. I was very excited to see the new issue of SANQ as there is a great article AND a charted sampler from Tennessee to stitch up. I will have to change out the tree colours since they are really bright.

I wanted to answer some questions from the comments -

Carol asked about the sampler hanging above Ellen - that is called "This is the Day" by Hands to Work and appeared in an issue of JCS a couple of years ago. A great piece to stitch. I changed up the floss colours from the recommended ones.

Margaret asked about the frames I got - I will usually buy a frame or frames either because I already have a piece that might work already stitched and waiting - or more often than not just because the piece is a great price and I might at some point stitch something that may fit. The past weekend was a total fluke that both frames fit something I already had. I hadn't framed anything in the longest time and I was getting antsy to get something thing framed - so I just lucked out. I use the pin around the edges method - I like this method much better than lacing.

Lisa M and Rachel S asked about the two pieces that the frames had in them when I got them. I still have them, but what to do with them I haven't a clue. The medical piece is stuck to a slim piece of card board and the little flower print is loose. Suggestions??

Donna asked about the Bison- there is actually a herd in the paddock. If you look very closely you can sort of see them huddled up in the Bison Hut. It is very dark up in there so it is very hard to see them.

Also over the weekend we ran out to dinner at Chevy's - we had a guest in town and they like Chevy's. While out at the Mall we went in the Hallmark store - big mistake - they have out, not only some totally cute Halloween stuff but have started to put out the Annual ornaments. Resistance was running on low - for both of us and Rico caved and got his annual "Doorways Around the World" -

This year it is Italy - another great doorway - I of course am a great fan of the Noah and the Ark Bible story - and of course this piece totally popped....

I picked this up and put it down, then picked it up again, then put it down.... Rico picked it up, rolled his eyes and bought it for me - how sweet!! There are a few others that we might get - like we need anything else for the tree!!

There you go sports fans, again thank you for stopping by and for the kind comments!!!!

Take care,

Monday, July 26, 2010

Monday rolls around again....

GR&DF I am now in the mood for some delicious okra - and will certainly be getting some on Wednesday.

The past weekend was low key - with the usual stuff -

On Saturday Dale and I ran around to some Estate/Yard sales - Here is a snap -

I got two great old frames - the large black and gold frame dates to 1905 - since the black backing paper had never been disturbed and the certificate is 1905 - I figure that's the date - and the lovely walnut and gold shadow box frame that dates to the last quarter of the 19th century. I also picked up an old little sewing tomato, an older hoop, a china/bisque lady figure that I think is the top to a pin cushion - and great old church key. I usually have a tape measure with me but of course I left it home and just took a chance on the frames - they where totally cheap and in great condition - the large black one had a couple of nicks and scratches - but a quick swipe with some black shoe polish et voila - c'est perfect!! So above the before picture and now here's what I did on Saturday afternoon after getting home....

I got Ellen into the shadow box one - like a glove, it fit so nicely - and.....

I popped that Medical certificate out and slid in my CHS Alpha-blocks - again like it was made for the piece. I am really happy about getting these out of the "to be framed" pile - and up on the wall. Here is a dark and crappy snap of the stairway needlework -

and here is a close up of the two shadow box frames...

I think they look very nice together - I couldn't be happier about the way the "wall " is shaping up.

Also on Saturday we ran through Golden Gate Park and made a quick stop at the Bison Paddock - with all the Bison stuff in the news I was curious - here are a couple of snaps -

Here is a shot of the "Bison House" and the lone Bison out grazing around...

.... leaning against the fence and zooming in - I got this snap - It was a cold mid 50's day so I guess it was too cold to wander around.

I also whipped up a pan of brownies -

They are pretty tasty and are going very nicely with my morning cup of coffee here and I type out today's post.

There you go sports fans another weekend of fun. Thanks for stopping by and do come by again!!

Take care,

Friday, July 23, 2010

Short Friday Post

GR&DF thank you for all the kind comments for yesterdays post. I have such a hankering for some fried okra now. I might have to make some this weekend. I've also been thinking "brownies" ... so that might be something else I have to whip up.... with pecans - you can't have a brownie without pecans.

So we made it to the grocery store last night and after that fun fest in a cart - we got home and the fun continued as I got some laundry done. By getting most of the laundry done a put away - means that I wont have to do it this weekend - freeing up the time to stitch.

The DVD for the evening was the fourth disc in "Edward the King." This ongoing series is still a top notch piece. Last night the three episodes on the Disc covered the scandals of the 1870's and 1880's, the death of Queen Victoria and Edward ascending the throne. Tonight I think the mail will bring the final Disc with the 1901-1910 - Edwardian Period.

The stitching last night was almost nonexistent as I got some Floss Away bags in the mail yesterday - so I spent the time separating my silk for the SoHRH. Now I can finally get a start on this piece. I didn't want to start with all my silk in a jumble in a bag and these floss aways really keep the silk separate and in order - IMHO. After I finish SoHRH I still have - Houses, Christmas and Autumn at HRH - to do, so there is plenty of stitching of Hawk Run to keep me busy.

This will be a short post today - have a great weekend and do stop by again!!

Take care,

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Picture Perfect Wednesday - Lots of Snaps

GR&DF today's picture heavy post will certainly make up for the lack of snaps in yesterdays post. As it was a Farmers Market Day and we had a dinner out - lots of visuals accompany today's post. I do like to have a picture or two in a post as it does make the Blog a bit more interesting.

Lets start off with some Farmers Market snaps - It was a grey, cool and windy day so the light was a bit off- I did go back and kick up the bright and contrast so that the pictures pop a bit - I don't think it even got to 60 yesterday temperature wise. I think we are going to get a bit warmer this weekend - but I will believe that when I see it!

There was lots and lots of typically summer things in abundance -

This guys booth is where I usually get all my onions - always a little better price - and yesterday he had a load of delicious melons. If there wasn't half of one in the fridge right now I would have gotten one of these - and you can see the piles of onions he always has in the background.

There was lots of okra out also - I never buy the stuff as Rico wont eat it at all, but I love it!! Boiled, stewed, fried, pickled - I love it all ways. These where on the big side, but other booths has some really nice small pods.

and of course there was lots of corn.

Here is a snap of my purchases - I usually just get what we can use until the next visit to a farmers market - which I think will be on Sunday.

Last night we were meeting a friend and going out for Chinese. We got there a bit early - it is only about 4 mins from where we live so we had some time to shop around some of the stores there on Church Street.

The Noe Valley Pet Co. is the greatest little pet store - so well laid out and cute. If you look closely in the doorway you can see the cutest little puppy. He was in total dog heaven with all the stuff to sniff in the store. We picked up some chew things that the who-hounds like and some ear wipes for the Pete.

Independent Nature is the the greatest little plant shop. On YELP they get very nice reviews. The location they are in used to be a consignment/antique shop. Now the owner of the space has split the space into two small spaces - IN is in the right side. If you walk all the way through the shop to the back patio area there are some super plants.

I love geraniums and there was a pile of the scented ones - which I think are just great -chocolate, lemon and rose - so unusual and beautiful. Always loved them and now may have to get some for the balcony.

I climbed up some steps I don't think I should have to get this shot of Rico and the tiny space that is the back garden. It is very small be just crammed full of some very interesting and beautiful plants. Rico ended up getting a lovely little rose bush called sea mist or sea foam - pale pink flowers that look like old fashioned climbing roses (with all the pictures I got I did not get one of this rose). After putting the purchases in the car we headed across the street, yes I got me some perfect parking.......

Where we ordered some avocado egg rolls - no snap - the are great rolls full of delicious avocado and served with a vinegar type sauce - yummy!!

For the main course we got three different dishes -

chicken with black and white sesame seeds - succulent bits of chicken in a savory sauce -

this wonderful dish of mushrooms, water chestnuts and snow peas - and-

a dish I always order - walnut prawns - this is probably the least Chinese/Asian dish on the table, but I really love it!!

There you go sports fans - just another day in big City. Tonight will be much less fun - a trip to the grocery store and then home to do a load of laundry - can we get a less than enthusiastic - woo, hoo.

Thanks for stopping by do come again!!

Take care,

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Wednesday Post

GR&DF thank you so much for the kind comments - they made the morning.

Nothing, and I mean nothing is really going on. Life just moves along with the day to day business we all seem to get caught up with. The Netflix last night was the second disc of "Edward the King" I talked about yesterday. Still very good and moving right along with his story. Last night the action moved into the period of the long wait with nothing to do - and Edward found himself turning from lady to lady for entertainment. One of the more important women in his life was the beautiful Lillie Langtry. In EtK she is payed by Francesca Annis who does a wonderful job. She reprised her role as "The Jersey Lilly" in 1978's "Lillie." "Lillie" is another top notch period TV mini series that is absolutely worth seeing!! Here is a great little YouTube tribute to Lillie....

In the stitching department I was focused on exchange stitching - so no snaps.

Looking forward to dinner tonight - going out for some Chinese at "Eric's." One of our favorite places - and I don't have to cook it or clean up after!! That's what I like about eating out!!

Thanks for stopping by! Do come again!

Take care,

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

A Movie Post

GR&DF thank you for the very sweet words and kind comments for yesterdays post. Although when you read the litany of things that kept us busy over the weekend - it never once seemed to be strenuous or hard work or even a choosing to do something constructive over something fun - I always think to myself that if one stays a bit a head of the mess then everything is fine. That certainly does not apply to the dinning room table - which in my life has always been a sort of catch all space and piled high with "important" stuff - I just never seem to be able to throw or put everything away.

Yesterday was a doggie day-spa day - which translates into the who-hounds getting quick baths and some fine tuning on the sugar paws - (nail clipping). After the the sugar-paw treatment with bits of nail flying hither and yon - I hauled out the vacuum cleaner and ran the sucker around for the second time in as many days. So my question about that is why is there so much loose fur/hair and dust/dirt still there to be vacuumed up the day after I already pushed the vacuum around??!!! Its not like we are hauling dirt through the house, but I every single time I run the vacuum there is so much crap being lifted out of the carpet that I am just stunned - I wish I had wood floors. Lets derail that train of thought off....

I haven't really had a movie posting in a while so lets talk about three recent pictures -

First up "The Barbarian" - 1933 - starring Ramon Novarro, Myrna Loy, Louise Hale and C. Aubrey Smith. This film was a remake of the silent 1924 film also starring Ramon Navarro - called "The Arab." - The basic story revolves around Loy and Navorro. Loy plays a girl coming to Egypt to meet up with her fiance who is working in the country. Novarro plays a native Arab Prince who works the lonely female tourists for cash. He insinuates himself into being Loy's guide about town. The story expands to the desert and a kidnapping - eventually Loy realises shes in love with the brutal barbarian and off they ride into the desert. Beautiful cinematography, sets and costumes. Louise Hale as Powers get off some of the best lines written for this film. Very entertaining if a bit odd at times.

The second film I wanted to talk about is "Madame du Berry" - 1934 - starring Delores del Rio and Reginald Owen. A gorgeous film on par with the 1938 Marie Antoinette. del Rio plays the beautiful mistress of Louis XV - Mme du Berry - Although less fact and more fluff than I would like in an historical film - I totally enjoyed this film. I think that even if del Rio occasionally speaks with a more Hispanic accent at times - she certainly captured the spirit and frivolity of the times - enjoy the film more for the fan aspect than the fact presented.

Last night I started another TV mini series - "Edward the King" - 1975 -starring Annette Crosbie and Timothy West - The film is the story of the life of Edward VII. The first disc last night were the first four parts of the story from his birth to the death of his father, Prince Albert, from typhoid. This top notch piece is very interesting and well done.

I think that's about it for today - thank you for stopping by, do come again!

Take care,

Monday, July 19, 2010

Weekend Stuff

GR&DF thank you for stopping by and sharing a few moments with me and my Blog - I always appreciate the time and trouble you all take with commenting - thank you for Friday's comments. This past weekend was just beautiful here in City - it hovered in the mid 70's both days and there was a gorgeous cool breeze blowing in from the Ocean. I am always so grateful to be here enjoying this weather when I know that most of the country is just baking. We are surrounded with scorching temps - down in the central valley the temps where in the triple digits and stay there into the evening - on Saturday evening the fog rolled in and over Twin Peaks and I had to close the sliding door onto the balcony as it was actually getting chilly - and I was wearing sweats.

On the stitching front I got some more done on The Garden Path - here is a snap as it stood last night -

Sorry it is a bit wonky - I also got some more done on an exchange piece.

On Saturday we ran around to some estate sales and picked up a few things....

The gorgeous large mixing bowl is from the 50's as close as I can tell from the mark and is made by T.G. Green - the same company that makes one of my favorite kinds of pottery - CORNISHWARE - you never see Cornishware here in the states. It is a British product and if I had a pile of bucks I would have stacks of this stuff!! I really love the blue and white bands - go figure. Back to the bowl - it is in great condition and fits in so well with my pile of blue banded yelloware. The green pheasant is super de duper and probably from a California Pottery company and dates to around the 40's? The Madonna is Goebel and is also from the late 40's - so we did pretty well for a few dollars.

Also while running around we stopped for a visit at The Cathedral of St Mary of the Assumption. A newish building (and not my favorite) but the quite space that is the inside is really nice. I got a couple of snaps....

Looking straight up from where the congregation sits is this super giant space.

and here are the pipes for the organ - just magnificent. I always look for the organ and usually the pipes are hidden behind shutters or behind walls - but here they are right out in the sanctuary - Here is something you didn't know about me - I took years and years of organ and played at Our Lay of Lourdes church in Daytona - my organ teacher was a nun and music teacher there. I also played in my own church Christ Presbyterian in Ormond Beach. It was many years ago but I still love to hear organ music and always look for the organ in any church space I got to.

Here is a snap the jam I made this weekend - I may make one more batch as the peaches are just beautiful this year. I also....

.... made a batch of Rico's favorite cookies - peanut butter - also over the last couple of days..... vacuumed the house, picked up and dusted, did a bunch of laundry, hung out by the pool, took a nap, watched some movies, walked the who-hounds - just regular weekend stuff - nothing too strenuous.

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

Take care,

Friday, July 16, 2010

Weekend Plans

GR&DF the end of the week is here - and plans are coming together for a busy couple of days.

Top of the list is making some more jam - last Sunday I picked up a few pounds of rock hard, unripe peaches anticipating them ripening by this weekend ....

and I checked on them last night and they are right at perfect - so I know that I will get this bowl of fruit....

into these clean jars - a couple of hours of work but so worth it!!

I think we are also planning a run to the flower market. There are a couple of plants I want to replace in the house and we haven't been out there in the longest time - and - they have a great little restaurant out there so breakfast can be had at the same time!!

Last night I got together the stuff for another upcoming exchange - and was again flabbergasted that I could pull all the recommended fibers form my stash - me thinks I have too much! I also worked a little on the exchange I started the other day...... and I couldn't resist a little time on the Garden Path. I will have a nice shot of that piece on Monday.

The flicker last night was an older pick from the Disney Channel - an adaptation of Charles Dickens' book - "The Old Curiosity Shop" - 1995 - starring Peter Ustinov, Sally Walsh and Tom Courtney. I am a big fan of Dickens (as you already know) and try and see all the variations and adaptations out there of his work - and this was a very superior effort - great acting, great cinematography and it never seemed to bog down as some TV movies do. On a single DVD - this 2 part 3 Hour version is worth a look.

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

Take care,

Let's Stick to the 1840's

 Gentle Friends, I finished up Miss Sarah Barker 1840 here's an old snaperooo of how she looks... "Sarah Barker 1840"  from Ne...