Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Happy Campers...

James popped in on Mom and Dad for
lunch yesterday... from Houston!

The visit produced two Very happy
campers. Yea, James... I love Happy Campers!

The glowing Rose

When I walked into the Kitchen this afternoon I was blinded by
this Rose he brought in from the garden. I have never seen
a rose that Glows! It's incredible. Smells great too!

And, the Double-delight next to it isn't bad either!

Have you ever Smelled a double-delight? If you have, you
know what I'm talking about. If you haven't, go Find one and
smell it. I guarantee you will Never want to live without them

Ah! Looks like he found a Spot for it... I meant to show this to you Last weekend
but I forgot. It's a find from Payne's English stained glass in Pittsboro. Just a random
piece out of an Estate in England's Nottinghill, said Kurt Payne. I knew the moment I saw
it that it was coming home with me. It's a needlepoint done over 100 years ago, and I love it. I
wonder if the woman who crafted it could have ever Imagined it would end up being enjoyed here
one hundred years later. Kurt said some lady that visited the shop a few months ago spotted it and
couldn't stop going on and on about the type of Material that was used on it or the special colors. I'm
by no means an Expert on needlepoint so I have no idea what that might mean. All I know is that I feel
fortunate to have it. The back of the Frame gives away its age - Fortunately, someone cared enough
to keep the two intact and away from direct Sunlight as to not allow it to fade. It was marked at
$100, but since we took home Five pieces of his English stained glass, Kurt agreed to part
with it for only $75. I think it was a Fabulously fair trade! What do you think?

I'm just a sucker for a Knight and his fair Maiden!
Now, if I could only get, you-know-who to let me
replace that Ugly little lamp he picked out. I have a
feeling it might soon accidentally Topple off the table...

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

This one is Perfect!

Dashed over to Williams-Sonoma at lunch
to pick up the 90th anniversary edition Kitchenaid
stand mixer they agreed to hold for me!

Honestly, I have to agree with my friend, CH... Those women at Williams-Sonoma are
absolutely Horrible! Imagine all the Snobby-girls you knew in high school together in one
room. That's my Williams-Sonoma too! I dropped $573 there this afternoon and you would
think Purchases like mine happen in their Store every five seconds! I'm not asking for a Parade,
but Geez! How about an apology for being Out of the catalogs, instead of Telling me, you order
your catalogs on-line. And, how about Not rolling your eyes at me when my card-swipe didn't
work because You didn't complete the transaction at the register terminal properly? Oh, and for
the record, I don't care that asking you to Unpack my mixer so I could inspect it first, distracted
you from Answering the phone. I mean, I did show you the Photos of the damaged mixer I was
there to replace - So your comments about how all the mixers sent to the stores aren't even
shipped Inside another box didn't really do anything for me. Or make my damaged mixer any
less real. I also guess that a little Sympathy for a customer that spent an hour last night cleaning
up Broken glass and paint flecks because the mixer she ordered arrived damaged was too much
to expect too. I mean, Really! If I wanted to be ignored or engaged in Catty conversation, I
might have attended a certain high school Reunion held last weekend. Now you know why
I sometimes prefer to catalog shop. Every dime I pay for home delivery is Well worth it!

All that aside... There is lots of Good news here! Not only did I get a Perfect
new mixer... It clears the upper Cabinets too. So it Fits on the counter!

Which is what I've always wanted in this kitchen!
Unlike another stand Mixer I know, which doesn't fit on my counter,
and shall remain nameless... But not to worry! I still have the new ice
cream maker attachment I bought through Williams-Sonoma, and
cannot wait to use it. So this new mixer will Still get plenty of use!

This is for YW-S. She sent me an e-mail earlier telling me how Excited she is
about her discovery of Foil sheets! I want her to Look for these pop-up kind I use. I've
been using these for at least 15 years. They pop-Up and out of the box like Kleenex...
Before we left Monterey California I bought 20 boxes because I wasn't convinced
I would find my Beloved foil sheets in North Carolina. Silly girl! While we don't have
a Smart and Final, we do have a store exactly like it, called, Chef's Smart that sells them! It's
kinda like Carl's Jr in California is called Hardee's here. So, my dear friend, I recommend that
you buy one Box and revisit the need in a year or two. Because unless the good Lord lets me
live to be 145 years old, I'm afraid they'll be selling boxes of Foil sheets at my Estate sale!

And now for a little Bing! I found him Lounging out in the solarium
when I got home tonight. It is his room after all... Such a Rolly-polly kitty!

Big S-t-r-e-t-c-h!

I love this Cat!
I'll leave you to your lounging
now, Bing and get Back to my kitchen!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Did you get the License plate number?

Because my mixer has been in a Horrible accident
A hit and Run too... Oh, No!

Coming home started out well... Bing was in the Kitchen waiting
for me. As if he knew how excited I was about my new mixer!

I've been Excited to come home all day since he called this
morning to tell me my new Mixer was delivered. All day I've been
thinking... Will it fit under the cabinet on the Counter, or will I have to
make room for it up here, next to the last anniversary mixer Kitchenaid
put out fifteen years ago? I was so Hoping for the counter!

And, there it was!
Even the Box was pretty!

Ut-oh!

This didn't look good... But I was still Hoping the
damaged box wouldn't equal a Damaged mixer

But it did! Seeing all the chipped Candle-apple red paint
and Crumpled metal was almost too much to take. Kinda reminds
me of the 1968 Candy-apple red VW Bug I was driving the day
that Uninsured 17-year old driver rear-ended me in 1988  

I would have unpacked it Completely to test for under-the-Cabinet
placement, but the bowl is broken too so I can't move it around too much
more, lest I cut myself. It's bad... Even Bing looks devastated by this!

Although I think he's getting
over it more quickly than I am

No, no, Bing! It's not nap-time, we have a Mess to clean up!

Okay! Our poor, Wrecked mixer is back in the box, and Williams-Sonoma
said they will send UPS back tomorrow to pick it up. Looking at the box, I can't
help but think that Perhaps a FRAGILE sticker or three, on the box might have helped
avoid this tragedy! I just called my local Williams-Sonoma store and they are holding
a new mixer for me to Inspect tomorrow. I'm not Risking another home delivery! 

I also received another package today. I found these white,
vintage Fire King cereal bowls through e-Bay last week and just
had to have them. And, look... Not broken! Not these four...

or these Four! All eight bowls arrived in Perfect condition. If only
Williams-Sonoma could have done the same for me and my Mixer today!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

The End!

I hate the End of the weekend...

Why, oh why, must Monday come?

Oh, I remember now... Because we Love our jobs!

The End!

Why ever leave?

By the end of the Work week I'm usually ready for a little road-Trip. But
by Saturday evening, I'm ready never to Leave the house again. All it takes
is one look out of any Window in the house and I think, Why ever leave?
The peace and Quiet here just suck you in... Kinda like my hammock! After his
lunch he was supposed to get me for a Swim. But I guess this is as Far as he got!
Hard to believe it's almost August and the end of summer is just around
the corner. The size of the Hostas gives away  the time of year though
The same way this Flush of phlox and black-eyed Susan's do
There is a Bee for every bloom here! All I hear is buzzing...
As beautiful as the Bloomers and the gardens
are, this is still my Favorite spot outside!
Someone needs to get out of the Hammock and come play with me!
Until he does I'm just going to Float around and stare at the trees
Our trip Friday to Pittsboro reminded me why I prefer this
area of North Carolina more. It's all about the trees! The further
east you go, the Less you see trees like this. Out there it's all Pine trees
and sand. My part of the State is lush and green. The way I like it!
Yup! It's late-Summer... Here come the Stormy skies!
Thick clouds and rain drops Pushed us out of the pool so I popped
a quick coconut Bundt cake into the oven and took a shower. When I came
downstairs to remove the cake from the oven, someone was in the kitchen
unpacking groceries! We promised we weren't going to Leave the house today. For
any reason! His reason? He wanted to try the honey-Catalina salad dressing
he found in the pantry this morning and we were Out of lettuce  
I can't say I minded... Besides, I was in the
mood for my homemade Croutons too!

Let's make Egg salad!

He's hungry and I have eggs I need to use, which
means only one thing... Egg salad!

The secret to Perfect hard-boiled eggs is this... Place fresh eggs into a pan. You'll know
they are fresh if they remain under Water. If they float, or one end Floats to the surface,
throw them away. Sometimes, checking the Sell-by date on the carton works too. Now, bring
the water to a Rapid, eggs-are-bouncing-boil, and then, turn the burner to Low. Allow to simmer
on low for exactly 8 minutes. Not seven, not 9 - Eight. Then move the eggs to your sink and
allow Cold water to run on them until the egg feels Neither hot, nor cold in your hand  

Fresh eggs are a Breeze to peel! I like to peel my eggs under cold Running water,
the same way I like to brush my teeth. Yes. With the water running! I know that makes
me a Horrible person. But I can't help it. The water must be running. It's the only way to
get Clean teeth and that minty taste! I place paper towels into the Sink to keep the egg shells
from ending up in the disposal. Why? Because I got the, "It's a dispose-some Janet, not a Dispose-
all, Janet" speech from him a long time ago. After I clogged the drain with egg shells. And, potato peels.

Dry your eggs and Grab the egg slicer. To me, the key to Perfect
egg salad is perfectly diced eggs. And, this is the Way to diced eggs!

Lay your egg down into the slicer, and...

Slice it!

Now, Lift the egg - not the slicer!

Holding the egg in one hand, open the slicer with your other and
lay the Egg back down. But this time, rotate it the Other way!

And, slice it again!

Now, lift the Egg (remember, Not the blade) up and off the slicer again...

After you have the Egg off the slicer, open the slicer and
lay the egg back down. This Time, lay it on the diagonal

After the Third slice, you'll have Diamond-shaped pieces of
egg. This last step is what turns my egg Slicer into an egg Dicer!

Now toss the egg into a Bowl

Toss right off the slicer. Don't try to lift the Blade
first. It'll never work and you'll end up cussing at me! 

Nothing to it! And, so much Easier than trying to
chop Eggs into little pieces. Now, if you can do it
without cutting your Fingers... Good for you! 

Perfectly diced Eggs makes perfectly consistent egg salad!

Add a pinch or three of Kosher salt to taste

And, some or a lot Fresh cracked
black Pepper... Man! That smells good!

Just remember to move away from the bowl Before you sneeze!

Now, reach for the mayonnaise. I use Hellman's because I am unaware
there is any other kind of Mayonnaise in existence. Please... Don't mess this
up with something Silly like miracle whip. Hellman's... It's the only real miracle!

Don't go Crazy here... Just add a Little to get started. How much you add is
up to you. Fortunately, we both like a little Mayo with our Egg Salad. If you
prefer a little Egg Salad with your mayo, then go for it. I won't judge you!

I learned a Long time ago it's easier to add
more mayo than it is to subtract too Much mayo!

Combine the mayo with the egg thoroughly... Fluffing a little with
a fork as you go. Not a spoon! Because, who fluffs with a spoon?

Combine until it's Just right! Now... If I were making my Famous tuna salad,
this would be the point where I would add a can of drained Tuna, some diced white
onion and a few chopped Dill pickles. It's really good! So good, in fact, that
the first time I served my tuna salad to one of T's friends right after we
were Married, he told me he wished he had met me first!

If this were for me, I'd toast the bread. However, since it's not, and he
doesn't care for Toasted bread unless it's with Jam for breakfast, I won't

It's important to get the Right amount of egg salad on the bread. You want
egg salad in Every bite. But you don't want it to Squish out and make a mess
Now, cut! Straight across or on the Diagonal... You decide!

a little fresh-from-the-vine this morning Veg garnish and we're done!

Perfect Egg Salad... Makes a perfect Sunday lunch outside on the deck!