Wednesday, February 27, 2013

My New Chairs

Last week I wandered - without a keeper - into The Very Thing, a local consignment store where I've been known to spend a couple of dollars here and there.

Ok, I've bought so many dishes there that I'm kind of known as the china lady.

So I walked in and there they were.  The chairs that we've been looking for.  The Wonder Chairs.

Look how pretty!!

See how beautiful??  Nice and tall and really comfy!!  And they were staged so nicely at The Very Thing.  It was all just so.

So we crossed our fingers and they were still there on Friday when Larry could go in and check them out and sit in them.  And he loved them.  

We took them home and I dug out the fancy purple pillows that I had extracted from Laura's cast off treasures and MY chairs looked just so.

Neve has great taste.

 Except that Neve thought they would look MUCH better with Ken.  Even so, I sat and marveled at my beautiful chairs - 

Then reality set in.

And I realized that no matter what I wanted, I had other beings in the house who had their OWN ideas about how to decorate a chair.

Like this:
Lucy and Sminky trying the chair out.

And sadly, like this:
Ellie resting

At least they let us sit on the Wonder Chairs occasionally.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Valentine’s Day Dinner and Night Out

Larry and I decided to ratchet it up a bit this year for Valentine's Day.  I had a Living Social certificate for a substantial amount off of a room at the Historical Rosemont Manor in Berryville, VA and we found an Inn down the street that had a Valentine's Day Dinner, so we were all set for a romantic Friday night.  

Larry got off work early and we got all dressed up and looking fine and headed out to Berryville.

They had the menu for the dinner on their website.  We had a blast pouring over it at home -trying to figure out what-in-the-heck some of these culinary goodies were.....

Valentine’ Day
At The Battletown Inn

Pre Course
Braised baby beet Carpaccio, 2 yr aged Danish Blue Affinea, grape
seed oil, aged balsamic candied pecans

OK, this was the most mystifying course of all.  What it turned out to be was a SLICE, a really THIN SLICE of beet. With about 1/4 teaspoon of Danish Blue Cheese and about a half of a pecan worth of candied pecans....

Crisp Belgium endive, smoked scallop Quenelle, wasabi tobiko,
garlic chive Consommé, Enoki mushrooms

This was a piece of endive with a rounded oblong of smoked scallop mousse - UGHHH!! The consomme was served in a mini ramekin with lots of parsley and was really good - once you got over the fact that the enoki mushrooms are really tiny and look just like sperm.....

Maple Leaf Farms Duck Confit, hand cut papadelle,
sweet peas, braised Cipollini onions & fine herbs

Before I booked the reservation, I called ahead and asked if I could get pasta without Duck.  They said sure and the Eagle Scout who was our waiter assured me that my portion was Duck free.  Larry said he didn't know why I was so worried - the amount of Duck in the minuscule portion that we were served amounted to about the size of a pinky.  At that point we reminded ourselves that we had indeed passed a Subway on our way to the Inn...

Certified choice dry aged boneless Lager braised
short ribs, roasted baby winter root vegetables,
parsnip puree & natural braising jus

This is what I chose and it was not bad at all.  The baby winter root veggies were carrots, onions and surprisingly green beans.

Naturally fed & local Roasted half chicken
with ragout of wild mushrooms, braised leeks &
rice pilau

This is what Larry chose and after consultation with the aforementioned Eagle Scout waiter, Larry was assured that it wasn't a Cornish game hen, but that organic chickens just don't get that big.
He said that it was the best chicken he ever ate.

Butter poached cold water Lobster tail,
Pommes puree, coral cream, micro greens

We didn't go there.

Fifth Course
“Triple Threat” Chocolate
Dark chocolate strata, Belgium Bitter sweet petit four and
Mochacino malted shake

I, of course went after the chocolate.  The Dark chocolate strata was like a little bitty frosted kinda dry brownie.  The petit four was about the size of a quarter, and the Mochacino was served in a tiny beer stein just a little bigger than a shot glass. Less is more was never a concept that I appreciated and there should've been more...

Spiced Rum cake with a winterberry compote & Clove honey, champagne sorbet

This was Larry's choice and we were curious as to what winterberries were.  We were not enlightened.  The really really small piece of rum cake was tasty but Larry almost missed the tablespoon of sorbet.

All in all it was a great dinner!  Service was quick and attentive and despite our misgivings we didn't even need to stop at Subway on our was back to Rosemont Manor.

Our room at the Historic Rosemont Manor (the Einstien Room) was quite small but pretty.  We jammied up and hit the bed around 9:30 and the next thing I knew, it was 1:45 am and we were asleep on top of the covers with the lights still on.

We are nothing but a pair of romantic fools, I tell ya!!!

How as your Valentine's Day???

Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Bag of Books

My boss Laura is doing a tremendous spring-cleaning-in-the-winter.  They are downsizing and putting their house on the market and she is letting go of all kinds of treasures!!  And I have been lucky enough to snag a few odds and ends and make them mine.

(Audrey says one more thing comes in this house and she's going to have a serious heart to heart with Laura...)

One of the best things is this cookie jar!!  It is the happiest cookie jar ever made and I smile EVERY time I see it!!!

But of all the goodies that I've managed to sneak home (when Audrey wasn't looking) The books are my favorite!

Laura said she had some kids books that  she thought Grey and Neve might like, so I dragged the three bags upstairs and Neve and I started going thru them.

There were all kinds of great little kids books in there, but the biggest surprise of all, the ones that reduced me to tears, were the young adult books!!!!

There were Nancy Drew books.
There were Trixie Belden books,
There Donna Parker books.
These were books I wanted to read when I was younger and didn't get the chance!!
There was a set of Harry Potter books, and a set of Little House books !!!  (I've had that on my Amazon Wish list for ages!!)

I sat on the floor and looked thru my happy tears at the bounty of books spread out in front of me and all that I could think was - 

I am going to need some serious time off.

Just me, a cup of tea, and a little visit to my childhood.

I can't wait.

Monday, February 11, 2013

It's the Little Things

This morning I got up and staggered to the bathroom and came back to bed ABLAZE with a hot flash.

I was convinced that my skin was actually melting.

I got back into bed and Larry tried to put his arm around me 
and Scottie jumped up and curled up on her favorite spot - just under my chin.
"ARGHHH please don't!!  I am on fire with a hot flash." I wailed.

I am pretty sure that Larry was going to say something like -

"Oh Honey, is there anything that I can do for you?"  OR -
"Wow! Sucks to be you!!"  OR even -
"Geez, THAT'S why Adam didn't bite the apple first!"

What he DID say was "Ohmgffghh"

Because that is what you actually say when you have Scottie the feline turtleneck dropped on your non-hot flashing face.

Probably just as well.

I was in no mood to be trifled with.

What did I do???

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Mary's Wedding - Books We Love

We finally got the box of books that we used at Mary's wedding out of Audrey's car and then carried them upstairs from the corner of the washer and then dragged them out from under the basket of clean laundry in the sewing room to - finally - put them away.  

(The wedding was only 4 & 1/2 months ago.  We are not the sort of people who rush into things...)

We'd used the small sized antique books as bases for the table numbers.  We've been collecting these books forever and I was so happy when Mary asked to use them at her wedding.

Thank you Anita - Cool picture!!!

We used books that my granny gave me, books that Larry's dad read and passed on to us, little books we picked up at book sales, thrift shops, a few we inherited from Larry's Great Aunt Nellie, some from when my dad went to Officers candidate School, and this very special book - 

You can see where he penciled his name....

Mary's great-grandfather H.P. Turner used this book in 1917 when he was a 2nd Lt at Kelly Field in Texas.

It was great having these old book friends at the wedding - nice to get them out and see them stretch their legs - in a manner of speaking.

I have to admit that I LOVE my Kindle, and it replaces a lot of the books I read, but hmm... a stack of kindles on each table??

It just wouldn't be the same.