Saturday, July 27, 2013

At the groomer

We had a great time at the groomer's yesterday.  Well, I had a great time.  Stella could live without it to be frank.  But look at this cast of characters!  It was Big Dog Day until this little guy showed up.

Bearded collie.  

                                                    Sweet Bernese.  There were two of these big babies.

                                                                                Husky Chow.  Look at that face!
Last but not least.  Miss Thing.  She couldn't get off that table fast enough. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Hot enough for ya?

So delicious, so easy and so very refreshing.  You have to make this soup!  The recipe is adapted from Gourmet but I left out the the fancy shmancy gourmet business where you julienne the zucchini and then blanch it to use as a garnish.  Too. Much. Trouble.  It's sort of a blank canvas, so add croutons, some shaved parm or feta...or even the julienned zuke if you must.  I promise if you like zucchini or even barely tolerate it,  you will love this.  Nothing better than cold soup on a blazing hot day.

Zucchini Basil Soup
serves 3-4, from Gourmet, July 2008

2 pounds zucchini, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 Tbsp. olive oil
3 cups water
1/3 cup packed basil leaves

Cook onion and garlic in oil in a 3 or 4 heavy sauce pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add chopped zucchini and 1 tsp. salt and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes.  Add 3 cups water and simmer, partially covered, until tender, about 15 minutes.  Puree soup with basil in two batches in blender.  Or use an immersion blender.  Easier with much less mess.
Refrigerate until chilled.

Season soup with salt and pepper.  Serve in shallow bowls.  That's it, folks!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013



Still at it.  Still obsessed.  Still addicted with no hope for rehab.  I went bead shopping in NY recently and did a decent job of controlling myself but it's day by day, ya know.

Stretch bracelets are much easier on the old carpal tunnel and really fun to make and wear.  They look pretty mixed with charm bracelets and anything else you can get your hands on.  I am working on necklaces and earrings too so stay tuned!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Our garden

Isn't it lovely?  We are finally happy with our garden.  And just only took twelve years!  Steve would like it to look like a wild English garden but that depends on what the deer have in mind.  I have seen them lurking and I suspect they have already sampled a few things.  Or maybe not.  The guard dog we employ can't be out here 24/7 much to her dismay.  She goes ballistic at the mere scent of deer but they like to dine at night so it doesn't much matter.
Here she is on duty.  She is SO happy when keeping an eye on the street and anything that moves.  It's a dog thing.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Has it really been a whole year?

All I meant was to take a short break from this blog.  Really.  And now we are here one year later on June 18, the year of our lord 2013.  I have heard about time flying but this is crazy.  Anyway, I am back and am happy to share some pretty shots from our weekend walk in the woods.  It has also been a while since we trekked there and we all have really missed it.  Stella is now twelve which is damn geriatric in the large dog world.  She looks good, doncha think?  Still...we can't overdo it with her.  Arthritis, cataracts and other senior issues abound.  It seems we are all in this pot together.  So, here goes...enjoy.

Sunday, June 17, 2012


It has been a while since my last post.  Excuses include: sick dog, trip to LA, too busy with other stuff and general malaise and laziness.  However, I have recently come across this old photo of my dad and since it's Father's Day, I feel the need to share and say a few words about him.  The photo was taken in July of 1943.  There is an address written on the back of the photo of a house in Millbourne, PA.  I mapped it, found the street view and I am sure it's the place in the photo.  What was he doing in Millbourne in July, 1943?  On furlough from the army?  Visiting friends?  And why is he dressed up like that?  He looks so dapper there relaxing on a fine forties wicker sofa, cigarette in hand.  And who took the picture anyway?  I want to know!

He has been gone for such a long time that most of what I remember is pretty foggy.  Of course I remember that he was funny and gregarious and whistled all the time.  He could jump in the air and click his heels which always thrilled me.  He loved model trains, fiddling around with electronics, tooling leather goods and was a ham radio operator among other things.  He could take anything apart and put it back together.  And I remember going to the hardware store with him - his idea of heaven on earth.  As a little kid I couldn't understand how someone could just stand and stare at a wall of different size nails and find that interesting!  We always say that if he had lived he would have been one of those computer hobbyists hanging around Radio Shack back in the seventies.  As I sit here typing, snippets of memories are starting to bubble up but I think I will just leave this as it is.  And maybe soon he will wander through my dreams again like he does every so often.  Happy Father's Day!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Turkey and white bean chili

I love really easy and delicious recipes.  Who doesn't!  So when I come upon a really good one, I like to share.  I have no idea where I got this recipe so cannot give credit but it is really just a riff on basic chili.  The big difference is the turkey tenderloin instead of the usual ground turkey.  Oh, and fire roasted tomatoes.  I found a nice six-pack of Muir Glen at Costco.   I have done it with kidney beans, pintos and black beans too so whatever you like is good.

1 tbsp. olive oil
1 med. onion - chopped
2 garlic cloves - minced
1 lb. turkey cutlets - 1" pieces
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 15oz. can white beans
1 14.5 oz. can fire roasted tomatoes
1 C. chicken broth
fresh parsley - chopped or not

Saute onions 5 minutes.  Add garlic and saute for another minute.  Add turkey and spices, cook and stir until no longer pink.  Add beans, tomatoes, juice and broth and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or so.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Garnish with parsley.

So easy it's ridiculous.  Enjoy!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Eleven years old!!!

She LOVES the front window.  The only thing better than the front window is actually being outside on the front grass.  I have no idea what is so fascinating out there unless it's that piece of paper blowing down the street.  Or the trash can lid that shouldn't be there.  Not good.  Of course other dogs, bunnies, kitties, squirrels and deer occasionally wander by too.  That's when it gets interesting.  Sometimes she dozes by the window and I have to smile at her snoring.  And at her lapping water out of her bowl.  And munching on her food.  And how she goes into a trance when eating a milkbone.  And how she can seem to be fast asleep but I know she is watching every move I make.  I can see her eyebrows going up and down!  Why is this all so funny to me?  Anyway, Stella is eleven years old today.   It seems like I just posted the tenth birthday photo a few months ago!  Happy birthday, big girl!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

March madness without basketball

 Cherry blossoms
 Flag football.  I think.
Little tiny blue flowers
Beautiful magnolias
Peggy with dogs
For over two weeks we have been having weather and temperatures that are much more common to the month of June.  Or maybe even July.  In March.  I have never seen forsythia, daffodils and magnolias all blooming at the same time.  So many people are out taking pictures, walking, playing and having a lovely time of it.  And yet, most people we meet are saying the same thing.  It goes like this..."I am not complaining but this is really weird.  What is going to happen in July and August?"  And the truth is, the planting zone for northern Ohio has been changed from Zone 5 to Zone 6b.  I know that my parsley is back and my rosemary never really went away.  It's all very curious.  Meanwhile, look how pretty!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Beautiful Irish music

This is from The Long Black Veil, a gorgeous album of Irish music by the Cheiftans and many wonderful others.  I particularly love this tune.  Happy St. Paddy's Day!