Blogging about X-Stitching, the Flickers and my life here in San Francisco.....
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Monday, April 29, 2013
A Quaker Finish
Gentle Friends I am so happy that you enjoyed my little "walk" through my neighborhood. That was only the first few blocks, it goes on quite a ways, down into the Mission... so there will be more "walks" to come.
Over the weekend I finished up Miss Elizabeth - here's a snap... sorry it has such a blue cast to it, this was taken with daylight streaming in....
Scarlet Letter - "Elizabeth Sheppard - 1820"
LL 36ct Vintage Magnolia
2/23/13 - 4/27/13
Converted DMC 3803,934 & 3031 to
Gloriana "Dried Pink Roses," Elizabethan Green" and Belle Soie "Briar Patch"
You can see I decided to leave off her name and original date and put in my initials and this year. It was a really fun piece to stitch and I really took my time and enjoyed the work.
I did start something else but at the moment I am less that thrilled with the linen I am using and will probably switch it out for something else... I am waffling between a light vintage and a great piece of meadowlark..... I think just writing that I have made my decision... I'll get a snap up in the morning.
Thanks for stopping by, do stop again.
Friday, April 26, 2013
Buying a Lemon... PHP (Picture Heavy Post)
Gentle Friends I don't think I have ever just taken some snaps around my bit of the City. I am really lucky that San Francisco is such a easy to walk in city with lots of little neighborhoods. I live in an area called Noe Valley and within a 5 minute walk is 24th Street, the main shopping thoroughfare for the Valley. We have had such lovely warm, breezy weather this week, that the other day I took my camera along with me... so here we go... just down the street from me before I turn the corner to walk down the first of two hills is this great little shingle style house and their rose bush has been just blooming to beat the band for the last month or so....
That's an abalone shell nailed to the fence. On the opposite side of this little yard is a fig tree that is just starting to leaf out for the summer.
Walking down Castro Street a few blocks I turn another corner and am on 24th Street...
This is looking East on the South side of 24th, and this great little flower shop is always so pretty. Then you have a super bakery and next to that is a shoe shop and next to that is a foo foo chocolate shop. It is nice that the shop has kept the great old shoe sign up. A little further on is this bulletin board to see what is going on in our little area...
Walking down a little more I crossed over 24th and on the north side of the street I took this snap...
The shop "Just for Fun" is a large local stationary, and gift shop.
All along the street are these flowering pink trees, and they are going full blast this spring.... It's great when a gust of wind blows through as it picks up the little pin petals and creates a really lovely pink "snow storm" effect..... here's a close up...
Yes, I stuck my head up in a tree to take this picture... the looks I got where interesting to say the least. I know people though I was just some nut taking pictures!!
I made it to my destination....
I bought my lemon and while standing in line - next to a wall of chocolate from all over the world - I picked up a treat for me. On the way home I stopped off for a cup of coffee and trotted back up the two hills to my house. Here's what I went out for...
The chocolate was my treat. I was totally sucked into the dark chocolate with honey - and it is/was totally delicious!!! What, you may ask did I need a lemon for??? We were going to have quiche for dinner and I was going to steam some fresh asparagus and you can't have steamed asparagus without a squeeze of lemon... so there you go, some snaps of Now Valley.
That's about it for today and sort of wraps up the week. Thanks again for stopping by, do stop again! Have a great weekend!
Thursday, April 25, 2013
Bake A Coffee Cake
Gentle Friends I did remember to bring the recipe this morning. Which also allowed me to find the original on line. The recipe comes from "Sally's Baking Addiction" a great place for some really wonderful recipes.
ready for the oven......
You can click on over for the actual recipe - I do have some suggestions... use a 9 inch pan, I only could find an 8 inch pan and so I had to extend the baking time a bit to get it done in the middle - which made the cake come out browner than I would have liked. Although I had a package of almond slivers, I forgot them until the cake was already in the oven baking and I was cleaning up - oh, well, it happens! I also greased the pan instead of a quick spray with Pam - I wanted this cake to come out clean.
just out of the oven.....
I waited until it was cooled down quite a bit to cut into. It was a really tasty cake and went well with a cup of coffee.
ready for serving.....
That's about it for today sports fans. Thanks for stopping by, do stop again.
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Some Weekend Thrifting
Gentle Friends since I was a total scatter brain this morning and left the coffee cake recipe on the counter at home, I will skip talking about that today and talk about Saturday thrifting instead. I hit the usual spots and a couple of Estate sales and came away with some fun junque.....
In a single snap you can see some of the things I am totally interested in... if there had been a movie something and some sort of stitching it would be a complete picture of "edgar interests"....... but we can't have everything can we!!
Starting from the left.. I found this great silver basket, beautifully hand cut and engraved, a super piece made in Schwabish Gmund, Germany by Gebruder Kuhn ca. 1890-1910 at a Goodwill store - The marks a clear as day and they didn't have a clue where it came from or the silver content..... along with the basket I found the silver salver/tray (a Golf trophy from 1956), they were both filthy black with tarnish, and now after a bit of elbow grease, they are just beautiful again. I also picked up there the two late 19th century Gorham salt cellars (again filthy with tarnish)
- so it was a good silver day at the Goodwill's!!
The Moche frog stirrup pot I picked up at an estate sale. I almost missed it - and here's a short story to go along with it.... another buyer had her grubby hands all over it and just wouldn't make up her mind to either buy it or not - I just hate that. She kept asking Bill ( the guy who was running the sale, and an acquaintance of ours) all about it, when he wasn't as forth coming as she wanted with info - she then started to gripe about the price - I know she didn't have a clue about it or what it is - and the minute she put it down into the case by Ernie (one of the Bill's helpers) I snatched it right up. It is a super example of a Moche stirrup pot, a total repro, but so well done and not a flake or chip or nick anywhere it was so worth the pittance they were asking!! In fact Peru, the ancient home of the Mochica and Chimu civilizations is on my bucket list of places I want to visit one day!! The little duck ocarina was another estate sale find, raku fired it is in great condition and still plays - I am just fascinated by ancient Latin America cultures - and the museum I worked in in Florida (The Appleton Museum in Ocala) had a great collection of things from meso and south America I really enjoyed.
And, last in the haul is a pretty extensive biography of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, a couple - one royal and one not so royal - I have always been interested in reading everything I can about them and their lives - this was a super thrift store find.
That's about it for today sports fans, thanks again for stopping by, do stop again!
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Stitching Elizabeth and Bakin' a Cake
Gentle Friends the weekend by the Bay was just about perfect. The temps where in the upper 70's just about 80 with a slight breeze, and lots of sunshine, no fog or it would have been perfect. I did my usual therapeutic running around and thrifting - and I'll will post tomorrow those bits, today I wanted to show an update of Elizabeth. Since last Thursday the stitching has been slow but steady - and with a few frogs....
I would have been through the large open bit that will have two birds in the middle, but I was off a single thread with that design that has the rose in it - and it was throwing things off far too much so I had to frog a butt load of stitching and then restitch - it happens.
I am so waffling on what to start Santa's Village on, I don't want to start to light, then the snowflakes will not show, and I don't want to start too dark - I have on order a couple of pieces of linen and I "bought it now" a piece on the "bay of evil' so I will wait it out to see what I like best.....
Sunday afternoon I made up a coffee cake.......
Super easy and I talk about it in the morning.
That the quick news today sports fans, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Elizabeth Update and a Little Thrifting
Gentle Friends, I thought I would bring you up to speed with Elizabeth. I am still stitching along on her, and here's a snaperoo..
There's still quite a bit of white space left and that little pink acornis a bit odd, but she's still lots of fun to work on.
Over the weekend we hit a few Thrift/Consignment stores and a couple of Estate Sales, and all I can say is that it was sort of a bust. But, that's how it is sometimes, and I always think "there's always next weekend." Here a snap of the bits I picked up....
.... a couple of books and some movies. All fun stuff!!
That's about it for today sports fans, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
Gentle Friends although it may look difficult to make I found that Baklava was a totally easy treat to make. If everything is set up and ready to go it's a breeze!! As usual I went to the Internet and did a search for a recipe and found one at my stand by place for recipes... AllRecipe.com. I used this Bakalava Recipe posted by Neonwillie. I made a couple of small changes - they were to add a few scrapes of a nutmeg to the nut mixture, I also added some lemon peel to the syrup and I used three different nuts, Walnuts, Pistachios and Pecans.
Here is everything all put together and ready for the oven. I think the hardest part of the whole process was cutting the uncooked phyllo dough/nut layers - the top layers of dough kept wrinkling up, and I had to keep patting them down.
Here is my syrup simmering away while the baklava is baking.
Straight from the oven just before pouring on the syrup, it does look very dry.....
After pouring on the syrup and now the waiting period for it to cool down enough to serve.
Now, ready to eat!!
There you go - Bakalava. I used equal parts of each of the nuts, and chopped them up in the food processor. Since I don't have a scale in the kitchen, and the measurement is 1 pound "of nuts", I just used 1 cup of each nut, easy peasy. The amount of nutmeg I used would be around a teaspoon, but since it is not called for you can certainly leave it out, the same with the lemon peel, however, I think next time I make this - a combination of lemon, lime and orange peel in the syrup would be fantastic and add to the over deliciousness of the pastry.
That's about it for today sports fans, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!
Monday, April 15, 2013
And Winner and a Greek Treat
Gentle Friends we had a lovely weekend here by the Bay. Great weather, brisk wind and lots of sunshine.
I had the Hag Claw drawn a name from the PDoD (Pickle dish of Destiny) The BoD was so big I went with a smaller container - a bright cut pickle dish of my GG grandmothers - I now have a stack of these things in different sizes from my mom's stuff that I had sent out here ....
..... drawing the name......
... it is Janet from over at Caribou Crossing Chronicles, thanks to everyone for entering!! I will be having another Gift-a-Way soon so stay tuned!!
Yesterday I popped on the old baking Toque and got to making one of my favorite things - you do see that each weekend the stuff I am making are things I like and have never made before, and Baklava is one of things I had never tried to make, but just love!! ..... and here is the result....
I'll go into more detail tomorrow.
That's about it for today, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!
Friday, April 12, 2013
RIP Jonathan Winters
Gentle Friends, last night passed a top comedian of the 20th Century -
One of the great funny men of our time he was known for and got his start in TV. He was also a superb actor in Films - One of his best films was the classic 1963 ensemble piece "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad Mad World." The cast was full of big names and is a fun film to see. He was also a writer, produced and recording artist and a painter... he will be missed.
A great quote of his.... "If your ship doesn't come in, swim out to it."
A Couple of Fun Films
Gentle Friends I thought I would leave you with some film thoughts today. Since I watch lots of different films from all periods and styles I think these two films, which have absolutely nothing to do with each other (except I viewed them recently) would make for some nice viewing for others...
First up will be the Noir Classic "Gun Crazy" 1950 - directed by Joseph Lewis, original called "Deadly is the Female" - starring Peggy Cummins and John Dall.
The film is about the life of a man we see grow from a child to an adult obsessed with guns... then guns and a woman!! Not only obsessed but willing to do anything for his beautiful but "bad girl" turned wife. His willingness to please and do anything turns into a crime spree for the gun-toting husband and wife team.
The second film is a much newer one - "Rise of the Guardians" - 2012 - a 3D computer generated film from the books by William Joyce.
The Band of Guardians include Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman and the newest Guardian, Jack Frost - their mission is to protect the children of the world. The film revolves around their fight against Pitch, the Bogeyman. A really wonderful film, both visually and story wise. It seemed a bit intense at moments and I would not recommend it for really small kids, but for most kids I would think it would be fine.
Both of these are worth a look and both are on DVD so rentable. That's about it for today sports fans. Check in on Monday to see who is the winner of my Book Gift-a-way (see last post). Thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
A Sparkly Read...
Gentle Friends as with most new fangled inventions, I fight most of them tooth and nail until finally giving in... I am still fighting the "Book battle" and just refuse to accept a Kindle or any other plastic book.... I just refuse to give up my tangible, touchable, turn pageable books.
With that said, I finished up a really terrific paperback book at lunch today and thought I should pass it on. Called "Jewels: A Secret History" by Victoria Finlay, it covers in great detail 9 precious gems from the softest Amber to the hardest Diamond. Here's what the cover looks like......
So, if you would like to read this super "book" - let me know, I'll have a little drawaing over the weekend, leave a comment on this post of your interest and I will annouce the new owner on Monday.
A Quick Update on Elizabeth
Gentle Friends I think today would be a nice day to post a snap of the progress on Elizabeth...
Sorry that the dark green and brown really don't show well - I am leaving off the letters and date until the end, better safe than sorry - and - I'm not sure if I going to go totally down the repro road or not....... decisions, decisions!!
I am already eying my next new start, and it will be a totally Christmas one, Ho Ho Ho!!
Thanks for stopping by, do stop again!
Monday, April 8, 2013
Gentle Friends as usual I got a wild hair about baking something and thought to myself - "hey, self... you like palmiers so why not make some." So I spent about a millisecond on the Internet and found Ina Garten's super easy recipe for them. Don't you just love Ina, we do at our house. And, when she came to SF for a book signing you couldn't stir the crowd with a stick there were so many fans there!! But, back to the cookie...
So, I hauled it to the store and picked up some puff pastry (that's all there is to this) I already had the sugar - It comes frozen so I let it thaw out over night and made up a double batch of them yesterday. Here's some snaps....
... after rolling out the puff pastry on sugar and covering with sugar I sliced off pieces and they look kind of sad all pale and anemic on the baking sheet.
After about 2/3's of the baking time in the oven you flip them over to caramelize the sugar on the other side.... yes, they do stick to the flipper!! I found that tongs worked lots better to flip them.
After cooling off here they are - all crunchy deliciousness!! They go great with a cup of coffee. You can add a bit of cinnamon and nutmeg to jazz them up a bit or use Parmesan cheese instead of sugar for savory palmiers. You just can't beat a super easy cookie like these !!
That's about it for today sports fans - thanks again for stopping by, do stop again!
Friday, April 5, 2013
The Colours of India - a Picture Heavy Post
Gentle Friends I have wanted to post these snaps all week. They are from last weekend. Although it was a very low key three days of movie watching and doing our usual stuff around the house - we did make it out and downtown to Union Square. Why, you might ask did I, a non-shopping type, want to make a trek down to a shopping Mecca like Union Square..... it was to visit Macy's..
.... they were in full swing with their annual Flower Show....
This year the theme was "The Painted Garden" and was all about the lovely colours of India!!! All the front windows where just full of floral displays ....
This is a free event and the show is all over on the ground floor..... in the makeup, perfume, jewelry and handbag departments.... here are the snaps...
It is really hard to show in a few snaps the lovely flower displays and the impact they made - but - It was a super time and we'll be going again next year!
Thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!
Wednesday, April 3, 2013
An Elizabeth Update
Gentle Friends we had a great Holiday weekend and I have a bunch of snaps to show, but for now I am just going to post some stitching... I have been working slowly on Elizabeth and here is an updated snperoo...
I got this picture in daylight so that the pink and brown shows a bit better - as do the wrinkles in the linen. That's about it for today, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!
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