Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Foodie Friday

Welcome to Foodie Friday, hosted by Michael at Designs by Gollum. Please stop by her blog for lots of scrumptious food.


For this Foodie Friday I fixed a black bean taco salad in honor of Cinco de Mayo coming up next week.

Tablescape Thursday...Happy Cinco De Mayo!

Welcome to Tablescape Thursday, hosted by Susan at Between Naps on the Porch. Please visit her blog to see lots of tablescaping creativity!


Since May 5th is next week, I'm doing a Cinco De Mayo tablescape today.

Would you believe I found the plates and margarita glasses at the Dollar Tree? The glasses are even glass, too! $1 is cheaper than I've seen most plastic margarita glasses.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Tasty Tuesday ~ Taste of India

Welcome to Tasty Tuesday! Please visit our hostess, Jen at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam for lots more yummy food!


This past Sunday we went to a Taste of India festival in our area. There were lots of dancers performing and food galore.

Here's my son and his girlfriend checking out a food display.
My daughter loved the Indian ice cream.
This is Bhelpuri (lentil & rice snacks in mint and tamarind/date chutney).
This is Dahi Chat Papri (spiced potatoes and chickpeas with tamarind sauce).

This is Tikki Chhole (potato patties with garbanzo beans).
We didn't try these last two, so I didn't catch the names.

There was lots more food that we didn't try.


My son is vegan, so he loves Indian food -- lots of vegan choices for him. We have a really good local restaurant, Rajput, that has a mostly vegan lunch buffet on Saturdays and we frequent it often.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Metamorphosis Monday

Welcome to Metamorphosis Monday. Please visit our lovely hostess, Susan at Between Naps on the Porch, for more amazing transformations.

A while back I found an old, sturdy Ethan Allen hutch on Craigslist. I knew I wanted to paint it, but wasn't sure what color. In it's original state, it's so old-fashioned, but I knew it could be turned into something wonderful. Please excuse our slightly -- okay, extremely -- messy garage. It's a metamorphosis in the making too!

The old hutch was transformed into this:

And here it is loaded up with some of my pretties:

We had a piece of honed Calcutta marble cut to fit the top of the base.

Thanks to our lovely hostess Susan, I am now obsessed with the Herend Rothschild pattern. She posted about this a while back, and I knew I had to have some pieces in this. I had never heard of it before. For now I've got these four dinner plates, and several small pieces that I bought on eBay.

From the Herend, USA Website:

Rothschild Bird

Many connoisseurs consider this pattern, first created in 1860 for the Rothschild family of Europe, to be the epitome of hand painting on porcelain. Twelve different motifs portray a 19th century tale about Baroness Rothschild, who lost her pearl necklace in the garden of her Vienna residence. Several days later it was found by her gardener, who saw birds playing with it in a tree.

Some of my tureen collection:

I am so pleased with how this turned out. Mr. Maison did the painting and I've got to give him kudos. He did a great job! In case anyone is interested, the color is Benjamin Moore Fieldstone.

I hope you have enjoyed this Metamorphosis Monday. Hope everyone has a great week!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Pink Saturday

Welcome to Pink Saturday, hosted by Beverly at How Sweet the Sound. Please visit her blog for lots more pinkness!

I'm posting this sweet little pink bouquet Mr. Maison brought home to me yesterday.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Foodie Friday

Welcome to Foodie Friday, hosted by Michael at Designs By Gollum. Please visit her blog for lots more scrumptious food.

I made vegetable soup today, and had a wedge salad on the side.

Vegetable Soup:

Vegetable boullion cubes
Cannellini beans
Frozen mixed veggies
Salt & Pepper
Shell macaroni

Last week Nancy at Southern Lady posted a wedge salad, and it looked so good I decided to fix one too.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Tablescape Thursday

Welcome to Tablescape Thursday, hosted by the lovely Susan at Between Naps on the Porch. Please visit her blog for lots of fun tablescapes.

For this week's tablescape, I've done a simple spring setting.


April 23 is the fourth anniversary of my furbaby Sassy's death. We all still miss her so.

Here she is, fresh from a haircut, and feeling frisky.

Waiting for Daddy to scratch her chest.

With two of her favorite people, Young Maison and Ballerina Maison, when they were about six and two.

After Sassy passed away, I found a couple of poems that gave me comfort.
The Power Of The Dog by Rudyard Kipling

There is sorrow enough in the natural way From men and women to fill our day; And when we are certain of sorrow in store, Why do we always arrange for more? Brothers and Sisters, I bid you beware Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
Buy a pup and your money will buy Love unflinching that cannot lie-- Perfect passion and worship fed By a kick in the ribs or a pat on the head. Nevertheless it is hardly fair To risk your heart for a dog to tear.
When the fourteen years which Nature permits Are closing in asthma, or tumour, or fits, And the vet's unspoken prescription runs To lethal chambers or loaded guns, Then you will find--it's your own affair-- But...you've given your heart for a dog to tear.
When the body that lived at your single will, With its whimper of welcome, is stilled (how still!); When the spirit that answered your every mood Is gone--wherever it goes--for good, You will discover how much you care, And will give your heart for the dog to tear.
We've sorrow enough in the natural way, When it comes to burying Christian clay. Our loves are not given, but only lent, At compound interest of cent per cent. Though it is not always the case, I believe, That the longer we've kept 'em, the more do we grieve: For, when debts are payable, right or wrong, A short-time loan is as bad as a long-- So why in Heaven (before we are there) Should we give our hearts to a dog to tear?

Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable. All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind. They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster. You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart. Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together.... Author unknown...
As you can see from her picture above, I have given my heart to another dog to tear. I know she, too, will have to leave one day, but I couldn't imagine my life without her.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Metamorphosis Monday

Welcome to Metamorphosis Monday hosted by Susan at Between Naps on the Porch.

For my first Met Monday I wanted to post a hutch redo we did for our daughter's bedroom. Please excuse the extremely messy garage (that's a metamorphosis in the making too as we're trying to get it organized). I found this old Ethan Allen hutch on Craigslist, and since it was very sturdy, and the right size, I thought it would make great storage for my daughter's room.

We painted it black to match her new bedding and accessories. After this was finished, we started working on another hutch we bought for our dining room. That's almost finished, so I'll probably post it next week. It always amazing what a little paint can do.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Dance Competition

(Ballerina Maison is the first on the left)

My little dancer, Ballerina Maison, was in a competition at King's Dominion in Richmond, VA, a couple of weeks ago with her dance company. They did really well. They got a superior rating, which was the highest possible, and were First Place in line tap. They were Third Place Grand Champions of the entire day out of thirty-seven groups that participated.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Foodie Friday

Welcome to Foodie Friday. Please visit our hostess, Michael, at Designs By Gollum for lots of delish food.

Our family just returned from a spring break trip to the Cincinnati area to visit family. Whenever we get back that way, we love to hit up our favorite restaurants.

Our first stop was Skyline Chili.

Mr. Maison and I each got a four-way: chili, spaghetti, onions and cheese.

Mr. Maison also got a cheese coney on the side.

They even have a vegetarian version that has black beans and rice in place of the ground beef. Since my son is vegan, this is what he always gets.

Another of our local favs is White Castle. Yum...a little piece of heaven in a box!

My parents usually bring us cans of chili to satisfy our cravings in between visits and we make our own four-ways and coneys. My mom has had this old recipe for years for Cincinnati-style chili. I've never made it, but I'm thinking of making it with soy crumbles for my son.
Cincinnati-style Chili
2 pounds ground beef
4 medium onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 small can tomato paste
4 tablespoons chili powder
1 1/2 tablespoons vinegar
2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon allspice
1 quart water
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon cinnamon
4 medium hot peppers (put in whole)
salt & pepper
Cook for five hours. Add a little water as needed while cooking. Remove peppers after chili is done.

The ground beef in this chili is really fine and most recipes tell you not to brown it first; simply cook it in the water.