Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Tea Stands for Tuesday - 12/31/19

Here we are at the end of another year and another decade.  

I lift my cup this morning in toast to Elizabeth who has brought us all together for a party.  All are welcome at Altered Book Lover.  

I haven't been able to post as frequently as I once did but I still think of all of you as my online friends.  I wish you the very best in the New Year.

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Merry Christmas 2019

Happy Holidays to all my friends

a talisman made with bits of rubble

Monday, December 2, 2019

Second on the second - Tea Stands for Tuesday - 12/2/19

Bringing this back for a second look and another cup of tea.  it was summer last time I posted.  This morning we have cold rain so tea it is for me.  Visit here to see what others consider worth a second look.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Tea Stands for Tuesday - 8/9/16

Today is the day Elizabeth invites us to a Tea Party at her place.  You can bring any drink and come along and join the fun.


As I mentioned yesterday, I've been at the River House.  The weather was quite warm so I was drinking lots of water while creating this and that.

Here's another project accomplished.  It is an idea I had in mind for some time.  I am sure I saw something similar somewhere but it was ages ago and I don't remember where it was.  I'd be happy to credit the idea if I could.  I don't even know what to call the end result.  Maybe a Rose Light?

I started with this.  A glue gun, glass bowls and a cheap stem of roses.  I seem stuck on roses these days.  Sketching them, stenciling them and  now this.

The roses were torn apart and the petals glued onto the glass bowl

I found s bit of tulle in my scraps and cut a few petals to stick in here and there just to add a little depth and dimension.  Here's a close up , see the  petal with texture?

When finished I put a little tea light inside. It was a bit hard to photograph with the light on.  I used one of the l e d type lights but you could use a real tea light.   I was pleased with the end result.  It makes a nice night light.  I can also imagine several on a dining table, maybe in the patio.

I hope you had a great week, I did.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Today's bake

Up early this morning so decided to bake cranberry walnut muffins  for breakfast.

I know many of you are getting things ready for tomorrow's big day.  We'll be with family so I don't have a whole lot to do.  It is kind of nice after years of cooking the turkey and hosting the party.  I'll miss the leftovers though.  How about you?  Doing it all?  Going out? 

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Tea Stands For Tuesday - 11/26/19

Hello to all of my tea party friends.  I'm happy to be able to join everyone at Elisabeth's blog party this morning.

Pinterest photo

I brought hot chocolate to share this morning.  Anything in a pretty cup would please me though.

We will be with family on Thanksgiving but we hosted some friends over the weekend.  Not the traditional meal, just a pot luck of desserts.

I made the traditional Libby's Canned Pumpkin pie.  I tossed in a few extra spices but otherwise it is unchanged over the years.   

My other old fashioned dessert was a skillet pineapple upside down cake.  I left out the bright red cherries in the center of each pineapple ring.  We don't eat them.  I kind  of miss them when I look at the cake though.

Hope you are well and happy as we near  the last month of the year.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Veterans Day

Lifting my cup to all the veterans out there today.  

Thank you for your service.

Friday, November 1, 2019

Art for Dia de los Muertos

This was created some time ago and may have been shown before.   I pulled the talisman out for a bit of seasonal decoration and thought I would share it this morning.

Día de los Muertos is widely celebrated in the Latin community here.  I made a talisman to recognize the day in my own way.

I think if you click on the picture you can enlarge it.

l used a  tin can lid, pull tabs, scrap paper and some beads. I actually found this string of beads in the gutter - maybe it was originally a bracelet. Anyhow, I knew I wanted to use them in some way.

Have you found anything interesting laying in the street lately?

Monday, October 28, 2019

Flight Behavior - book

As a longtime fan of Barbara Kingsolver's writing, I was surprised to find I hadn't read this book.  It deals with a number of contemporary issues including climate change and the difficulty of the poor to change their lives.  I highly recommend it.

Goodreads review says:

Flight Behavior takes on one of the most contentious subjects of our time: climate change. 

With a deft and versatile empathy Kingsolver dissects the motives that drive denial and belief in a precarious world.

If anyone has read the book I would like to hear what you thought.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Tea Stands for Tuesday - 10/21/19

Yes, it has been ages since I've participated in Elizabeth's Tea party on Tuesday.  I've missed everyone.  My very old computer decided it had enough and gave up.  People who know about those things tell me my data can be restored.  I hope so.  Meanwhile I'm using the computer that belongs to DH and trying to remember passwords.  So its coffee for me this morning.

I have managed to figure out Halloween is only a few days away.  Enough time to mail a couple of cards.  This is the first one going out.

Lets go visit the rest of the tea party friends over at Elizabeth's blog.

Monday, October 21, 2019

elotes chidos - (food)

Have you tried this?  Oh so good.  Here's a picture and description from the East Bay Express news.

La Santa Torta - food truck at various locations in Oakland

The elotes chidos, which translates to "cool corn," consists of a cup of hot, freshly steamed corn kernels topped with Flamin' Hot Cheetos, a drizzle of mayonnaise, a sprinkling of cotija cheese, lime juice, Tajín, and Tapatío. The combination of corn and Hot Cheetos created a fun contrast of textures, while the mayo and cheese helped tie everything together.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

The Address - book

I've been reading quite a bit lately.  I thought I'd pass on a few titles of books I enjoyed.  This one is 
historical fiction.  If you have any reading suggestions, please leave them in the comments.

After a failed apprenticeship, working her way up to head housekeeper of a posh London hotel is more than Sara Smythe ever thought she’d make of herself. But when a chance encounter with Theodore Camden, one of the architects of the grand New York apartment house The Dakota, leads to a job offer, her world is suddenly awash in possibility—no mean feat for a servant in 1884. The opportunity to move to America, where a person can rise above one’s station. The opportunity to be the female manager of The Dakota, which promises to be the greatest apartment house in the world. And the opportunity to see more of Theo, who understands Sara like no one else...and is living in The Dakota with his wife and three young children.

Review from Goodreads.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Celebrating the Autumn Equino

This is a great time of year here in Northern CA.  Hope you are enjoying fall weather where you are.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Unsheltered (Book)

Barbara Kingsolver always hits the spot for me.

Barbara Kinglolver

The Goodreads review says it well:  

"A timely novel that interweaves past and present to eplore the human capacity for resiliency and compassion in times of great upheaval,"

Monday, August 26, 2019

Tea Stands for Tuesday 8/27/19

Hello.  I've missed everyone but have been online very little of late.  I'm happy to see the party is still going on over on Elizabeth's blog.  Check it out here:  .http://alteredbooklover.blogspot.com/2019/08/t-stands-for-city-bites.html

I was out on my morning walk and happened to see this sign in a window. (BTW, I like their clothes.) I immediately thought I needed it for my Tuesday post.  I had picked up three pounds of coffee and a cup to go so I put those in the shot - and there you have my drink reference for today.

We spent a lot of time on the porch at the river house this summer.  The bench is one DH made and I got the rocker at a thrift shop.


Our daughter brought us this sign one weekend when she and her husband came to visit.

You are somewhat forced to relax when you are here.  It is largely and agricultural area and farm equipment is driven up and down the roads at its own - usually very slow - pace.

Hoping to catch up with everyone who makes it to the Tea Party this Tuesday.

Sapphire Grapes

I know I'm easily amused but ...  I did a double take in the produce shop and a big smile broke out on my face.

Sapphire Grapes

I bought a bag of grapes and when I got them home DH had quite a laugh as well.  They certainly taste like grapes, in fact they taste like very good grapes.  Maybe we are the last folks around who hadn't had them.

We really need to get out more.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Aztec Fast Food (recipe)

I posted this recipe years ago on my old blog.  I just recently made it and we enjoyed it so much I thought I would post it again.

1 large can (29 oz.) hominy
1/3 C smooth peanut butter
½ tsp garlic salt
2 cups finely shredded cabbage
1 ripe avocado, pitted peeled and sliced
About 1 cup thin sliced red radish
Lemon wedges

Drain hominy and pour 1/3 Cup of the liquid in a 2 - 3 quart pan. Add peanut butter and garlic salt. Stir until smooth. Add hominy and cayenne to taste (a bit hot). Stir often, uncovered, over medium heat until hominy is hot. Divide cabbage equally amount 4 wide salad bowls. Spoon hominy mixture onto cabbage and top with avocado and radishes. Season to taste with lemon and salt.

Makes 4 servings

From: Sunset Magazine – many, many years ago.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

The Art of Disappearing

I seem to have taken this poem to heart.  My blog has become kind of a place holder.  I'm around, just quiet.

The Art of Disappearing

When they say Don't I know you?
say no.

When they invite you to the party
remember what parties are like
before answering.
Someone telling you in a loud voice
they once wrote a poem.
Greasy sausage balls on a paper plate.
Then reply.

If they say We should get together
say why?

It's not that you don't love them anymore.
You're trying to remember something
too important to forget.
Trees. The monastery bell at twilight.
Tell them you have a new project.
It will never be finished.

When someone recognizes you in a grocery store
nod briefly and become a cabbage.
When someone you haven't seen in ten years
appears at the door,
don't start singing him all your new songs.
You will never catch up.

Walk around feeling like a leaf.
Know you could tumble any second.
Then decide what to do with your time. 

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Happy July 4th

pen and ink with paper scrap

I always think of today as the beginning of summer although the calendar might not agree.  Hope everyone has a happy and safe holiday

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Tea Stands for Tuesday - Second on the Second - 7/2/19

Good Morning friends.  This month Tuesday falls on the 2nd so I'm bringing an old post up for a second view.  Be sure to visit Elizabeth's blog this morning where others will be joining in the kick off to July.


T stands for Tuesday - 1/21/14

Tuesday and time for Tea. Today I am drinking Marsala Chai. It takes a little more effort to make than my usual pot of tea but occasionally I make that extra effort. Thanks to Elizabeth for hosting T stands for Tuesday, and inspiring me to have a special tea this morning. 

Marsala chai

Chai is simply the Hindi word for tea and can refer to plain black tea.  I know the drink is sometimes referred to as Chai Tea here in the US but that is obviously redundant.  Marsala chai literally means mixed spice tea in Urdu. Marsala chai is a flavored tea made by brewing black tea with an assortment of Indian spices.  

Here is my method for making Marsala Chai

2 cups water

4 teaspoons black tea leaves

1 chunk ginger, minced
3 cardamom pods, open pod and use seed and pods in mix
1 inch or so stick cinnamon
3 whole cloves
4 whole black peppercorns

Milk (in my case almond milk)
Sugar to taste.  I like to use brown sugar

Crush the spices using a spice grinder or a mortar and pestle

Put 2 cups of water in pot, bring to a boil.  Add the tea and crushed spices, boil for about 15 seconds, let stand for one minute.

Warm the milk in a pot (or in the microwave)

Strain the above tea into cups.  Add warm milk and sugar to taste.  I like my chai about 2/3 tea to 1/3 milk so you might start with that and see what tea/milk ratio you like best.

Once in awhile I vary the spices and add a whole star anise, some fennel seed or part of a vanilla bean but the list above is my standard.

I don't use much regular milk but substitute almond milk most of the time except in cooking.  I think it works well with this tea although standard dairy milk is of course traditional.

Do you like Marsala Chai?  Have you tried almond milk?

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Tea Stands for Tuesday - 6/4/19


Now that we have the tea covered,  lets talk about dainty little tea party sandwiches.  The ones with their crusts cut off.

There seems to be something, especially popular in the Southern States called "Pimento Cheese" sandwiches. 

While searching around I came upon this.  I remember it (or something like it) from my childhood.  It then came in glass jars that were decorative and used as juice jars I think.  I didn't much like the cheese spread.

I'm curious.  Like so many things, the home made version probably tastes a lot different and a lot better.  I'm going to experiment.  Here's the recipe I have - handed down through a friend's family

4 oz good cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 (7 oz) jar of pimentos, drained

2 T. mayo (more or less to taste)
1 scallion, diced 
shake of garlic powder
1/8 tsp sugar

Using a mixer, combine all ingredients until smooth. You can mix by hand too, but it takes about 2 minutes and does not come out quite as smooth. You don't want to use the pre-shredded cheese for this, typically, it does not taste as good. 
There are a lot of variations on this, adding ketchup and Heinz chili garlic sauce and eliminating sugar makes it sweeter. Some like addition of a spicy ingredient like Tabasco. Some add a vinegar to make it tangy.

Is pimento cheese a staple at your house?  Have you even tasted it?Any comments or suggestions would be much appreciated.

Meanwhile, lets go to Elizabeth's blog and see who else it at the Tuesday Tea Party today.

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Second on the Second 6/2/19

On the second of each month Elizabeth suggests we bring an older post back up to the top for a second look.  Mine is a bit long this time but I hope you enjoy it.  I found it interesting that Elizabeth and I both posted about a book and she was the inspiration for my book in the first place.  Please check here to see what other people have offered for a second time.

TUESDAY, JUNE 25, 2013

Finally! The book revealed

A couple of months ago Elizabeth posted a recycled journal that intrigued me.  You can see it here.  Elizabeth is a wonderful and prolific mixed media artist and often an inspiration.

My book was created with recycled greeting cards, some junk mail, some papers I stamped with my hand carved stamps.  Nothing was purchased in the making of this journal.

The cover and spine of my book (cardboard and junk mail) being glued to recycled newsprint that I stamped - I posted a picture of that sheet earlier

The outside of the cover when finished.  Note the pull tabs that I'll use for the closure.

Recycled cards, all but one have been decorated to cover the original card and also the inside page if there was a message.

Preparing to tie cards to the spine of the cover

Assembling the pages

Finished book

Here is a little video my GD helped me with.  Something else I learned in this process, how to take a video and post it.  The quality is poor but I think you can get an idea about the finished book.

This turned out to be much  lengthier process than I anticipated but I learned a lot along the way.
.  Have a "theme" in mind for the book, easier to coordinate the layout
.  Save greeting cards - I didn't have a huge selection and most were thin shiny paper
.  Tie the pages in very tight - a couple of mine are a little wobbly.
.  Each card basically has 4 sides, that is a whole lot of decorating.

I don't know if I will make another book of this sort.  A lot of my desire to create art is about the Process and not the Product.  I like leaning "how" better than doing it again.

How about you?  Do you work with an idea over and over, improving it along the way?  Do you ever just want to try something to see how it is done?

Saturday, June 1, 2019

June is National Pride Month

We are celebrating Pride Month at the river with our very own rainbow over the garage.

Have a great month.

Friday, May 31, 2019

The last day of May

The May Fairy among the Dogwood. By Cecily Mary Barker.

Days fly by.  I've been unable to post lately for a variety of reasons.  
Our spring season has been cooler than usual and it is hard to 

imagine summer is just around the corner.  Wishing everyone a

great day.  Go do something fun.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Thoughts on Friday - 5/17/19

pen and ink, scrap paper

‘If you have never been called a defiant, incorrigible, 

impossible woman... have faith... there is yet time’ 

Clarissa Pinkola Estes 

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Tea Stands for Tuesday 5/14/19

Tea and roses.  What could be better?  Of course I'm going to join the great people at Elizabeth's place for Tuesday tea this morning.  Why don't you join me?

Earl Grey is my go to tea.  I also prefer loose tea.  A pretty cup never hurts either.

I've been looking at roses when I go out walking.  Isn't this a pretty pale pink?

Or maybe you prefer apricot.

I keep looking because I'm trying to learn to draw them.

Hope you see some roses today.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Happy Mother's Day

Wishing everyone a happy Mother's Day.  Some of us are mother's in the traditional sense, some of us offer mothering to others or four legged friends.  Whatever you do, enjoy your day.

collage on 8x10 board - created some time ago

A daughter
is a little girl
waiting to grow up
and be
a friend

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Second on the Second 5/2/19

I went back to my old (closed) blog this time to find something to bring back for a second time.  Elizabeth hosts this 2nd/2nd event ever month.  Be sure to check her blog.

I made quite a few so called "Sketchy Ladies" and really enjoyed them.  Bits of paper and a pen is all it takes.


Artist's Play Room 8/1/12

This time Jenn at the Artist's Play Room has challenged us to do a SERIES.  I decided to do a series of Sketchy Ladies with quotes.

3x5 cards, pen, paper scraps. dabs of ink

Here they are individually so you can read the quote written on each one.

I don't remember where I got this list of quotes, I just found them to be amusing.  Sorry the pictures have shadows, unless I can go outside in the full sun I don't seem to be able to take photo's without this happening.