Thursday, September 30, 2010

Market Shots and PIF Participants

GR&DF the weather finally broke yesterday and it was like the air-conditioning had been turned back on. We are so blessed to live in this perpetually cool city. I shouldn't complain about a couple of days here and there of heat - I know there are places that are still in triple digit heat. In the comments yesterday Maggie O mentioned a really great movie - " Mr Blandings Builds His dream House" - 1948 - a post war film if there ever was one!! Starring Cary Grant, Myrna Loy and Melvin Douglas. This super film has the NYC living Blandings moving to the quiet of the country to build a house - easier said than done. I can not recommend this film highly enough - great performances and a super story!! great choice Maggie!! Here is one of my favorite Myrna Loy scenes from the film....

Yesterday was my mid week Farmers Market visit - and the bounty was everywhere with Fall harvest pouring in for sale. Of course I got a few snaps.....

I usually don't see green tomatoes - but I was in luck and found this box full of them - I picked up some for delicious fried green tomatoes - yummy!!

These beautiful grapes are from the Valley - juicy and sweet!!

This mushroom stand always has some great variates. Along with my green tomatoes, I picked up some mushrooms, heirloom tomato, red grapes, plums and onions. It was a nice day at the market.

I had 9 wonderful stitchers want to take part in my PIF - and I would love to include them all, but I know that would be a a bite I would not be able to chew...... so I had a mini drawing to narrow the field down to 3. My PIF participants whom I will create each a piece to receive and who will set up their own PIF on their blogs are..... Deborah - over at "Cranberry Samplings" - Kielrain - over at "Kielrain's Stitches" - and, Maggie - over at "Stitching Devotee." I will get out follow up emails this morning - thank you all for wanting to participate. I really enjoy PIF's. These three ladies will be setting up PIF's so that opens up 9 more places to get involved.

I think that about wraps it up for today. A reminder for HOE and HOE II members - today is the last day to sign up for the Fall Exchange, partners will be assigned tomorrow. Also we are coming up on my Birthday Hobbit Gift-a-way Drawing - to throw your name into the BOD for this drawing you will need to post a comment on this POST only.

Thanks again for stopping by, do come again!!
Take care,

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Movie Posting

GR&DF - oh my goodness - I am humbled by the PIF Stitching - I will take the names and do a drawing this evening for the 3 PIF Participants - Thank you so much!! Sharon asked a question about finishing, and how I learned. One of the best finishing sites has got to be Vonna's over at Twisted Stitcher - she runs her own finishing business and does a beautiful job, but she also has an area of Finishing Tutorials that is great. You will have to click under "My Other Blogs" to find the tutorials - they are clear and have pictures.

There have been quite a few flicks lately - some good, some not so good and a couple of really bad ones. I think I will talk about three pretty good ones..... the year is 1934 - early for many stars but the cameras where rolling and Hollywood Magic flowed to the masses.....

First up is "365 Nights in Hollywood" - 1934 - starring James Dunn and Alice Faye. Now you know I love me some Alice Faye - I think I have seen everything available with her in it - some of her early films come off a a bit creaky and stilted but her musical performances are top notch and lovely. "365 Nights" is one of the more creaky and stilted story lines and some of the acting is wooden, but there are some shinning points. It would seem that there is a single print left of this film and it is not as good as it could be - a bit grey and streaky. The story line is car hop makes good in film industry, while exposing a rigged acting school - in a nut shell - For all the film is the high points are the musical numbers - here is a really nice one from early in the film -

As I said the picture quality is not very good, but production value is great for 1934.

Next up was a DVD from Netflix that I didn't know would turn out to be a double feature. On one side I found "Little Miss Marker" - 1934 - starring Adolphe Menjou, Dorothy Dell, Charles Bickford and Shirley Temple. Notice who had 4th billing. A really cute Damon Runyon story about a very negative bookie who falls for the always effervescent Shirley Temple. The story plays out and there is a happy ending.

The last film is the flip side of the "Little Miss Marker" DVD - and a Shirley film I had never herd of or seen before called "Now and Forever" - 1934 - starring Gary Cooper, Carole Lombard and Shirley Temple. Gary Cooper and Carole Lombard are at their gorgeous best BTW. An interesting story and an odd vehicle for Shirley Temple - early in her career as she was just starting to make it big. This really is an adult film focused around Cooper and Lombard's characters that happens to have Shirley in it as the catalyse for the adults to go "straight."

There you go sports fans - remember to throw in your name for the Birthday Gift-Away Drawing - click HERE to add a comment and be included.

Take care,

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Blacksheep's PIF and some Cookies

GR&DF thank you for stopping by and I am very happy that you enjoyed the snaps on yesterdays posting. It was a different kind of Saturday from the usual Estate Sale/Thrift Shopping and we really enjoyed it immensely.

I also wanted to announce a PIF - Lana over at "It Seams to be Snow" started the PIF, then Patti join hers. Patti listed the PIF over at "Tapestry of Dreams" - that's where I joined - now here is my call for people to take part in a PIF....

Blacksheep's PIF

Here's how it works - the idea is that 3 of you join my "Pay if Forward" and then I will send a hand made gift (made with love!!!) to each one of my THREE participants within the next 365 days!
Then, those 3 people must also agree to host a PIF on their Blogs and ask for 3 people to join their PIF's - To Pay it Forward! So this is me, asking for 3 people to join my PIF - just leave a comment on this post only! That's it... no Catches!! If I have more than 3 stitchers interested then I will take those interested and have a little BOD drawing of 3 to take part in my PIF. Now.... I only need three - who wants to be my Three??

That's basically what Lana wrote and as with Patti I think that it explains it very well so I lifted it from Patti who lifted it from Lana. I was part of a PIF a year or so ago and really enjoyed taking part.


The cookie recipe is very easy - I got the original from All Recipes - but of course I tweaked it a bit - so here is my version.......

7 Layer Cookies

3/4 c unsalted butter
2 c graham cracker crumbs
1 c semisweet chocolate chips
1 c butterscotch chips
1 c chopped walnuts
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1 1/3 cups shredded coconut

1 - Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2 - Line a 13x9x2 pan with foil. Butter the foil
3 - Melt the 3/4c butter and mix with cracker crumbs. Evenly press the buttered crumbs into the bottom of the greased pan. Put the pan in the preheated oven for about 5 mins to set the crumb base.
4 - On top of the prebaked crust sprinkle evenly the chocolate chips, then the butterscotch chips, then the walnuts. Pour the can of condensed milk over the nut layer as evenly as possible. Then evenly sprinkle the coconut over the milk layer.
5 - Place the pan in the oven and bake until the edges are golden brown - about 25 or so minutes. Let cool.

It was a warm day and I let the cookies cool in the pan about a 1/2 hour - then took the entire thing by the foil out of the pan and cooled it for a couple of hours in the fridge before cutting.

These tweaks came from the comments attached to the recipe and worked for me quite well. I think this recipe could take many adaptions, white chips, dried fruit, whatever - Enjoy!!

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

Take care,

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Busy Saturday - with lots of snaps......

GR&DF this past weekend we had some really glorious weather - warm and sunny both days!! Not just SF warm where it hovers in the low 70's but honest to goodness warm weather - in the low 80's.

Rico's mom and his nieces came up for a city visit. We decided to go to the SF ZOO. They had been a long time ago, but I had never been. We had a great day - and you know I had my camera.... After walking in we started over in the African area where we ran into this great looking bird!!

He shared his area with these zebras....

and these large horned animals. (they where far away) Most of the animals throughout the park where lounging about in the bright sunny weather or hiding in the shade - smart animals!!

Isn't this a great looking duck!!

Moving away from the African Savannah we then came to the Gorilla enclosure - they where mostly just sitting around - with the exception of the baby who really wanted to play. This is one of the larger males who was sort of moving from shady spot to shady spot.

There was some beautiful reticulated giraffes.

This is a large pool of very playful penguins - I liked how the cool spray of water created a lovely rainbow. The penguins where swimming around and jumping in the spray.

There was a lovely black swan....

and some more ducks....

There is a great South American Rain Forest exhibit and these where a stand out pair of colourful birds...

Back outside there where some pelicans...

and this a majestic bird -with his great comb and large waddle!!

It was getting very warm by the time we made it over to the Kangaroos - and here they are enjoying the sunshine.

We saw lots of peacock's walking about and strutting their stuff.

In the Zoo is a section called the Children's Zoo - where there is a great prairie dog colony .....

... and some really cute meercats....

The meercats where fun to watch - as they wrestled about then settled into a lump'o'cat to soak up some sunshine.

and watching over all the meercat fun was the "watch" cat - looking out for danger.


After we left the Zoo and we headed to a small Pow-Wow on the other side of the city. Here are some snaps from this awesome experience...

All ages dance - these where the younger boys competing...

even at the smaller Pow Wow's the regalia is extremely elaborate

Notice the leather shield with the Sioux National Colours.

There where two groups of drummers - here is the main group in action.

These are the older boys in competition dancing.

And here is a snap of the "All Nations" Dance - not part of the competition but an all inclusive dance with those in regalia and those in street clothes.

Sunday was a much more quiet day - all I accomplished was to make a pan of 7 Layer cookies....

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

Take care,

Friday, September 24, 2010

Another Week Ends

GR&DF wrapping up the week - woohoo!! Two days to sleep late and do nothing. Although "nothing" should really say "no work." I have a couple of things on the agenda this weekend, but if they fall through it will be no big deal. The weekend her in San Francisco is a Leather Fest Weekend - culminating on Sunday "South of Market" - with the the Folsom Street Fair - which for those not in the know is an internationally famous leather and bondage Fest of the kinky kind. I wont put a link to it, but if you are at all interested you can Google it and read about all the festivities in glorious detail. As with all the street fairs in the city, and there are many through out the year - HERE is a link - , they all are about the same with various tweaks on the different or sponsoring themes. The Folsom Street Fair is not on my agenda - I think the last time I went was about 10 years ago and that was under duress - we had some friends in town for it specifically - so we all went.

Not much else since yesterday - after work we where out by the pool for a good long while. it was very sunny and a light breeze was blowing so it couldn't have been nicer.

Thanks you all for your sweet kind comments for yesterdays post - April Michelle mentioned a heating pad to keep the hounds warm - and we usually wear out at least one of them year. It stays going most of the time and the who-hounds are usually in a tussle as to who will get it or be right in the middle of the pad and be Queen hound!!

Only a week or so left to sign up for the Hobbity Birthday Gift-a-way Drawing - click HERE to post a comment to enter.

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

Take care,

Thursday, September 23, 2010

A Picturesque Wednesday....

GR&DF - Happy Thursday!!! Only one more day until the weekend. I think we all deserve a pat on the back for making it to the end of the week - almost there. Yesterday was a very snappy day for me and my camera. I wanted to start off with a mistake I made in yesterdays post - the silk is not HDK by HDF - Hand Dyed Fibers - by Vicki Clayton - I think I read and reread a post before posting and there are still mistakes. Last night I started to pull together the silks for my next biggish project and it will be a mix of silks I think. Because so far I have a few HDF's and a few Soie d'alger's. I am also thinking I will shift some of the colours to Belle Soie (Miss Sharon is releasing 3 lovely new BS colours at Market - must have them!!). I worked some more on the outline of the next square on Shores - no snap.

I did make it to the Farmers Market yesterday and have some snaps of my little visit....

A pile of beautiful peppers

I love marigolds and thought this picture with the purple flowers was nice.

These gigantic piles of mild bell peppers reminded me that there are only 93 more days until Christmas - it is certainly sneaking up on me this year!!

I am thinking these are some of the last watermelons of the season.

Another lovely mix of late summer and fall vegetables.

We love a potato at my house - and the fingerling's and purple Peruvians are great roasted in the oven with a little olive oil and salt.

On the way home I got a hankering for a cup-cake so we stopped off in the Mission. We had to park a block or so away from where we normally do and this little "Delicatessen" sign I thought was very clever.

Outside of the Mexica-tessen they have a couple of tables on the sidewalk - I like that about San Francisco, there are usually tables and chairs all over and near little cafes to sit and enjoy the world passing by - The great mural is just more of the out door art that decorates our city.

Once again I needed to take a snap of the little cakes.....

There was a tray of my favorite cup-cakes - this is the first time I have ever seen signage, but with or without a sign a pineapple filled, frosted goody is always welcomed!!

Here is a tray of some wonderful pan de huevo - egg bread - this is the yellow topped kind, which is vanilla flavoured sugar on top. This bread also comes white topped, and chocolate topped.


I so enjoy this neighborhood of stitching - the Blogs and friends I have come to know over the years have been both kind and generous. These kindnesses that have been done to and for me I try and pass on to others - so when I am asked about something I might have in my stash or something I am stitching, if I can I lend, trade or pass on these things. I think of it as my way of giving back to the greater whole that is our community. I was approached by another stitcher, Vera, about my "Ellen Birdseye" chart that I stitched a while back - knowing how hard this OOP chart is to locate it was my pleasure to loan it to her to stitch. Yesterday I got back my chart and some unexpected treats. Here is a snap -

Along with returning my chart Vera sent me a darling Fall pin cushion with our initials and a great wooden Spurtle. Knowing how I love wooden kitchen utensils this was a new one to me. It is of Scottish origins and dates back to the 15th century. Used primarily for the stirring of porridge's and soups. How super is this!! I am bowled over by the unexpected kindness - thank you so very much!!

I will leave you with one extra snaperoo - I did a couple of loads of laundry last night while watching "The Choir" on BBC America. (how great is this show!!) - and if you remember that Lolly likes warm clothes from the dryer. I brought the clean tub of clothes into the house, put it down for a second and turned back to start folding and found this looking back at me....

How cute is that!! I had to get this stuff folded and put away so I picked her up and pulled a totally hot sweatshirt from the bottom of the tub and wrapped her up like a burrito - she was very happy until it cooled off - at which point she crawled out looking for another warm sweat shirt to roll up in. By that time everything was folded and put up.

There you go sports fans another Wednesday done and gone. Thank you all so very much for stopping by and taking the time to comment!!

Take care,

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A Low Key Tuesday -

GR&DF here we are at the "hump" of the week. Looking forward to the weekend. I am putting off the finish on my exchange piece until the weekend - for no other reason than I am a total lazy butt and procrastinator. Last night stitching was focused on Shores - just the outline blue of the next square - I did move on to square 3 - I guess I am doing them in order. I also started to pull together my next start. I have all the DMC floss for the piece and got all 34 of those suckers on the little bobbin things - but I am really feeling the need to do it in silk. It is an older pattern so the only colour key is DMC - the silk conversion will take a bit of doing. I really like HDK silks and they are so affordable, but I have so many NPI silks now from doing the HRH pieces - what to do??

We got home yesterday - after stopping off for haircuts - to find Liza Minnelli on the Oprah show. It is amazing to see Liza still out there doing her thing and going strong after all these years of performing!!! Brava!!

We also got in some pool time - which was relaxing, even with the fog rolling in and the cold breezes blowing. At 8pm we where perched in front of the "Tube" to catch the season premier of GLEE - and how super was the first show!! Sue Sylvester is still a super character and so evil!! It looks like another super show!! i could do without the dozens of commercials!

The movie last night after Glee, really wasn't a movie, but movie related - "Hidden Hollywood" - 1997 - hosted by Joan Collins - this film was a collection of deleted clips from films - deleted not because they weren't superior but often to shorten up films or for less noble reasons. Some top quality pieces with big stars - worth a look for the movie fan. These clips are only from the 20th Century Vaults and no other studios. With this little taste of the "lost" and "hidden" pieces of film makes one wonder at what else is just piled up and locked away!!

I am sorry that I didn't mention in my little review yesterday about the songs in "Hole in the Head" - here is the Academy Award winning song from the film -

The Garden of Eden Hotel is in the background.

If you haven't entered yet remember to get your name thrown into the BOD for the Birthday Drawing on October 4th - you need to click HERE to post a comment.

Take care,

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Couple of Films

GR&DF - I am so pleased that so many are taking part in my upcoming Birthday Drawing!! Thank you so much!! There is still lots of time to enter - just click HERE and post a comment to enter - so easy.

Not very much going on - I finished up the stitching for my Hallowe'en Exchange piece, now I need to "finish" finish the piece and off it will fly to its new home.

I wanted to mention a couple of films that I have recently seen. First up would be "Blood on the Sun" - 1945 - starring James Cagney and Sylvia Sydney. I liked this review of the film from IMBD so here goes..... "Jimmy Cagney is like a firecracker in this movie, set in pre-WWII Japan. In some ways it's a cross between Casablanca and the Maltese Falcon and sometimes its silly (e.g. white actors in Japanese makeup), but its one of the most entertaining movies of its era. It reminds you how much of a talent James Cagney was - he carries the picture. There are also excellent character performances by Wallace Ford and Porter Hall. Even Sylvia Sydney as an unconvincing half Chinese vixen has some good moments."

The second film is "A Hole in the Head" - 1959 - starring Frank Sinatra, Edward G Robinson, Eleanor Parker, Carolyn Jones, Thelma Ritter and Keenan Wynn. I had never seen his film before getting it through Netflix - and was pleasantly surprised at how nice it was. Being completely character driven was nice and the performance's where very good. The movie is set in a less than perfect hotel in Miami Beach called "The Garden of Eden." This hotel is run by a dreamer, Sinatra - who is about to loose the place due to lack of funds to pay the mortgage. He goes to his wealthy brother played by Robinson - who will give him the money with conditions - either give up his 12 year old son or at least "get married to nice quiet little woman." Directed by Frank Capra you have a nice ending without to much schmaltz.

There you go sports fans. Thank again for stopping by, do come again!!

Take care,

Monday, September 20, 2010

Misty Weekend - and the 3rd Annual Birthday Hobbit Drawing

GR&DF we start another week - and the "rain" ends today. The "rain" this weekend was not much to speak of at all. It was very damp yes - but not drops from the sky wet, but misty clouds of foggy grey dampness. Just enough to make the streets very slick!! Riding up and over the hills out of Noe Valley yesterday going to breakfast was a slip, slide kind of ride that I do not enjoy. After eating and stopping off at the little Farmers Market we headed home and stayed in for the rest of the day. I stitched almost exclusive both days on my upcoming Halloween exchange - and I must be doing something right as I had to nice compliments from Rico about the piece. I am using his High School colours so I think that makes it more attractive.

On Saturday I ran around with Dale to some estate sales and thrift shops. Here is a snap of the few bits I picked up -

I picked up some nice books - including a Deviled Eggs cookbook - we love us some Deviled Eggs and there is a blue cheese and bacon version that sounds delicious!! I also picked up a nice old copy of "Through the Looking Glass." There was also a heavy brilliant cut little vase I picked up for a $1 - how could I pass on that! I also found a great old paperweight with a picture of Windsor Castle, a Native American Tarot deck of cards for Rico and a Foley grease strainer. I picked up the strainer not so much for the strainer part but for the great painted handle that is in super condition.

I also did the laundry - which is a weekly thing - and the funniest thing that happens every single time I bring in the warm stuff from the dryer is Lolly gets all perky and bouncy. She can almost not stand to wait until there is something for her to cuddle up on.... so I have gotten into the habit of throwing a towel or sweatshirt or something - even a pile of underwear down, just so long as it is warm and available. Well, I though I needed a snap of that cuteness.....

She just can not be warm enough and is a total cuddle bug when there is a chance a spot might be warm and toasty!!

Yesterday we had a visit from our neighbor Brian - and look what he brought over -

Now he did not name this delicious thing but I can describe it - sitting on a pecan type cookie/shortbread base is a layer of dark chocolate pudding covered in whipped cream laced with more pecans and then drizzled with more dark chocolate with pecans dusting the entire top. I am a big pudding fan and this was just super delicious. He also makes a great peanut butter pie and we have been on the receiving end of those also. The funny thing about his dessert making is that his wife will not eat any kind of dessert at all. He really shouldn't be eating anything like this either as he is training to do an Iron man Triathlon in Napa Valley in a few weeks. This was such a big piece that we only had half last night and will finish it up tonight - ahhhh the kindness of neighbors!!

I also got some baking in yesterday. I made up a batch of Walnut-Date orange Bars. Something I had not made before but they turned out pretty tasty!!


It is once again time for my Annual - Hobbit Birthday Drawing - where, for my Birthday I give a present to a lucky person drawn from the BOD. So if you would like to enter the Drawing all you need do is comment on this post only. Anyone from anywhere may enter. For this Drawing I think I will change it up a bit - For a single comment on this post you will have One entry, if you mention it on your Blog then you will get another entry and if you become a follower then you will have another entry - so you can have up to Three entry's in the drawing. If you do post it on your Blog or become a follower or are a follower already please let me know when you comment so that I can make sure that the proper number of chances are in the BOD at drawing time. So easy to do - get one, two or three entries- it's up to you. Now, I am still putting things together fro the actual gift so it will have to be a surprise. I am doing the drawing on October 4th, my Birthday, so you only have a mere 2 weeks to comment for entering. I will close out the comments on Monday morning October 4th at about 7 AM PST- I will have the drawing in the evening and announce the winner on October 5th.

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

Take care,

Friday, September 17, 2010

An Exchange Arrives and Commenting on Comments

GR&DF thank you again for the warm words and kind thoughts in the comments. This morning the rains are here - though lite and drizzly - it is wet in the city. Tomorrow and especially Sunday we are to have some true rain. Hopefully the city will get a good wash.

Yesterday I heard from my exchange partner, Berit, that my package had arrived. We had taken part in a small private Autumnal Exchange. Here are a couple of snaps of the piece I made and sent -

I stitched up part of the "November" sampler from Prairie Schooler. In picking the chart to work up for the exchange I knew how much Berit loves Foxes, so I made it a point to have at least one in the design. I used the recommended DMC floss on a piece of over dyed mystery linen. The box started off plain, but I wanted some more colour and so I went to the store and got me some paint - I was totally nervous about how it would look and even bought an extra box in case I screwed this one up. I am very pleased with the results and the paint was a winner.

The inside of the box I lined with a padded piece of Fallish fabric - I included a few extra goodies. I am so happy that Berit likes what I sent - making this another super de duper Exchange!!!

I did get some questions in the comments so I think I should take a moment to answer them - The Halloween RR in yesterdays post was stitched on 36 ct Birds of a Feather "Meadowlark" linen. I am stitching SoHRH on the recommended 36 ct LL "Autumn Gold." When I eventually made up my mind about what linen to stitch Shores on I ordered the "special cut." I was petrified that what would come would be super yellow or some odd weird shade that would make me crazy. What came was a lovely muted piece of linen that I am so happy about getting. So I was sweating it out for nothing. Sue mentioned a RR going "missing" - this happened in my first RR - where 3 pieces went "Missing" - it pissed me off but good. But I couldn't dwell on the negative - and we just restitched our pieces. That stitcher who dropped out with our "missing" linen is still out there and posting elsewhere, but she knows who she is!! AND Karma is a BITCH!!!

Faye mentioned getting back to her SoHRH - I was so like that in trying to plan stitching a block a month. I did that with VoHRH - and that took two years of mostly not stitching to get it finished. So now I just think it takes what it takes to finish something - this is supposed to be my relaxing and fun hobby, so I do not stress on a finish, unless it is for exchanges, which thank goodness have a mail date!! I keep saying to myself - this is "fun" and I am "relaxed."

- and - Peggy Lee made some of the Peanutty Brownies - success!!

The cupcake I chose was a favorite of mine they make - there was only a single one of them and I had already taken it when took the snap - I know not fair, I'll get a snap of one late on -as I am sure we sill be back for another visit. What I like is a kind of spiced cake with pineapple filling and covered in cream cheese frosting and sprinkled with toasted coconut. Probably my next favorite they make, if they are out of my first, would have to be the red velvet cupcakes - so delicious!!

I think that about wraps up the week - hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!! Do stop back next week!!

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...