Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

WHAT BETTER WAY TO WELCOME THE NEW YEAR THAN WITH A NEW BABY? I MET LITTLE ELAN FOR THE FIRST TIME WHEN SHE VISITED ANANDA & NATHAN'S HOUSE ON DECEMBER 15 - SHE ALREADY LOOKS SO MUCH MORE GROWN UP THAN THIS. YOU CAN CLICK HERE TO VISIT ELAN'S BLOG FOR THE LATEST PICTURES.

I WISH YOU ALL A WONDER-FILLED, PROSPEROUS AND PEACEFUL 2009!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Winter Wonderland Weekend

WHAT TO DO ON SUCH A SNOWY WEEKEND?

COOK LOVELY POTATOES, OF COURSE! I MADE THE CURRY STUFFED ONES AGAIN, FOR A PARTY ON SATURDAY EVENING.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Oh Christmas Tree!



BETTIE AND I BOTH LOVE THE CHRISTMAS TREE. I'VE BEEN COLLECTING ORNAMENTS FOR YEARS. SO MANY OF THEM HOLD MEMORIES OR SPECIAL MEANING. IT MAKES DECORATING THE TREE A TENDER EXPERIENCE.
I HOPE YOU WILL HELP KEEP THE LIGHT ALIVE IN THE DARK TIMES!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Welcome to the Snowflake Palace



THESE THREE WINDOWS ARE STACKED NEXT TO MY FRONT DOOR. I'VE BEEN BUSY FILLING THEM WITH PAPER SNOWFLAKES. I LOVE THE SWEET SIMPLICITY OF FOLDING AND SNIPPING THE SCRAP PAPER, AND THE SURPRISE OF THE PATTERN AS I UNFOLD THE DELICATE, LACEY PAPER. I CAN'T FILL THE SPACE ON THE BOTTOM WINDOW - THAT'S WHERE BETTIE SITS TO LOOK OUT UPON THE FROSTY WINTER WORLD.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Early Morning Winter Window

THANKS TO CAMILLA ENGMAN FOR POSTING A PAPER SNOWFLAKE TUTORIAL AT STUDIO VIOLET. I HAD A LOVELY TIME MAKING SOME LAST NIGHT. IF YOU HAVEN'T MADE ANY SINCE CHILDHOOD, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT!

Monday, December 15, 2008

That's a Big Kitty!




YOU NEVER KNOW WHAT YOU'LL SEE IN NEW YORK . . .
THESE HUGE BRONZE SCULPTURES BY TOM SACHS, ON DISPLAY OUTSIDE OF LEVER HOUSE AT 390 PARK AVENUE, WERE QUITE A SURPRISE.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

December City Lights


I'M STARTING TO GET IN THE CHRISTMAS MOOD . . .
I HOPE YOU ARE ENJOYING YOUR HOLIDAY PREPARATIONS.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Curry Stuffed Potatoes

BOIL OR BAKE SOME POTATOES UNTIL THEY'RE COOKED THROUGH, BUT FIRM - NOT TOO SOFT.

WHILE THE POTATOES ARE COOKING, SAUTE A CHOPPED, LARGE ONION, SOME GARLIC AND GINGER (I LOVE GINGER PEOPLE MINCED GINGER - SO EASY!) IN OLIVE OIL. WHEN ONIONS ARE COOKED THROUGH AND SLIGHTLY BROWNED, ADD SALT, PEPPER AND HOT PEPPER SAUCE TO TASTE. THEN ADD A FEW TSP. OF CURRY POWDER. IN INDIAN COOKING, THIS SORT OF MIXTURE (ONIONS, GINGER, GARLIC & SPICES, ETC.) IS KNOWN AS A MASALA.

COOL THE POTATOES OFF IN COLD WATER. DEPENDING ON THEIR SHAPES, EITHER CUT THEM IN HALF OR CUT OFF THE TOP EDGE. THEN SCOOP OUT THE INSIDES (USE AN OXO MELON BALLER - IT'S A GREAT KITCHEN TOOL!), KEEPING A 1/4" OR SO MARGIN AROUND THE EDGES OF THE SHELL.

MASH THE POTATO INSIDES. MIX TOGETHER THE MASALA, MASHED POTATO AND SOME COTTAGE CHEESE. FILL THE POTATO SHELLS WITH THIS MIXTURE.

PUT A THIN SLAB OF PEPPER JACK CHEESE ON TOP OF EACH STUFFED POTATO.
BAKE AT 350 F FOR ABOUT 20 MINUTES, OR UNTIL CHEESE IS MELTED, AND POTATOES ARE HEATED THROUGH.

PUT UNDER BROILER FOR A FEW MINUTES TO BROWN THE TOPS. YUMMY!
IF YOU USE FINGERLING POTATOES, THESE MAKE A GREAT HORS D'OEUVRES! USE LARGER POTATOES FOR A MAIN DISH.

THIS IS MY FAVORITE CURRY POWDER BLEND, OF LATE.

BY THE WAY, IF YOU GO TO SEE THE PIPILOTTI RIST EXHIBITION MENTIONED IN THE PREVIOUS POST, MAKE SURE YOU SIT IN A COMFORTABLE POSITION WHILE ENJOYING THE SHOW. I WAS A FOOL! AFTER SLUMPING IN THE SLIPPERY TRAIN SEATS, THEN SITTING ON THE FLOOR, SLUMPING AGAINST THE BIG ROUND COUCH AT THE SHOW, AND RIDING (SLUMPED! DUH!) THE SAME SLIPPERY TRAIN SEATS BACK HOME, MY LOWER BACK WAS A HORRID MESS. THAT'S WHY I HAVEN'T POSTED IN A WHILE - I WAS HOBBLING AROUND FOR DAYS, THEN TRYING TO CATCH UP ON ALL I'D LEFT UNDONE WHILST HOBBLING. TAKE CARE OF YOUR BACK! :-)

Monday, December 01, 2008

Pipilotti Rist at MoMA




FRIDAY AFTER THANKSGIVING WE HOPPED ON THE TRAIN TO MANHATTAN - BACK TO MOMA FOR THIS REMARKABLE SHOW. CLICK HERE TO SEE A SHORT VIDEO OF THE ARTIST TALKING ABOUT HER WORK. TRIPPY!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Corn Bread Stuffing - Step One

THIS THANKSGIVING, I'M MAKING CORN BREAD STUFFING. I JUST MADE THE CORN BREAD USING A GREAT SOUTHERN STYLE RECIPE FROM "THE BEST RECIPE" COOK BOOK. I SUBSTITUTED YOGURT FOR THE BUTTERMILK, AS I ALWAYS DO. THE RESULT IS A DENSE, MOIST CORN BREAD. THE ONLY FLOUR IN THIS RECIPE IS CORN MEAL - NO WHEAT FLOUR, SO IT'S GLUTEN FREE. I LOVE IT WHEN I FIND RECIPES THAT ARE NATURALLY GLUTEN FREE! NO ADJUSTMENTS TO BE MADE, NO EXPERIMENTING!
NOW IT'S CUT IN SMALL CUBES AND LEFT OUT TO GET STALE SO IT WILL BE NICE AND DRY FOR MAKING THIS STUFFING (CLICK HERE) ON THURSDAY MORNING.
WHAT ARE YOU MAKING FOR THANKSGIVING THIS YEAR?
OH, AND HERE'S A LINK TO A REALLY LOVELY BLOG CALLED "11286": CLICK HERE.

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Color of Cranberries


I ADDED SOME GINGER AND ORANGE ZEST TO THE BASIC CRANBERRY SAUCE RECIPE. IT'S QUITE ZIPPY!
ISN'T THAT COLOR SOMETHING?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Yet Another Variation!

WELL, YOU MAY BE SICK OF PICTURES OF APPLE COBBLER, BUT I'M NOT TIRED OF EXPERIMENTING WITH MAKING A DECENT GLUTEN FREE ONE!
THIS ONE USES DOUGH LEFT OVER FROM THE LAST ONE. I SHAPED IT INTO A LOG, PLASTIC WRAPPED IT, AND STORED IN THE FREEZER. IT WAS JUST THE RIGHT AMOUNT FOR A MINI-COBBLER, USING ONLY THREE APPLES. REMOVED FROM THE FREEZER LAST NIGHT, IT WAS EASY TO SLICE THIS MORNING. AN UNCONVENTIONAL, COOKIE-LIKE APPEARANCE, BUT SO EASY. I'LL LET YOU KNOW HOW IT TURNED OUT . . .

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Nathan Schiel



PAINTER NATHAN SCHIEL HAS A NEW WEBSITE. CLICK HERE TO TAKE A LOOK!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Cobbler Redux

I'M STILL WORKING ON MY GLUTEN FREE COBBLER RECIPE. THIS WAS THE BEST ONE YET. (I'VE MADE THREE SO FAR.) PART OF THE TRICK SEEMS TO BE MAKING THE BISCUITS THIN. I'VE BEEN PUTTING A SCOOP OF IT IN THE MICROWAVE FOR BREAKFAST, AND UNLIKE WHEAT PRODUCTS, MICROWAVING ACTUALLY IMPROVES THE TEXTURE.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Shelburne Falls Shambhala Center

THIS IS WHERE I SPENT THE DAY YESTERDAY. IT'S SUCH A LOVELY PLACE TO PRACTICE. IT LOOKS LIKE SNOW ON THE ROCKS OUTSIDE, DOESN'T IT? IT'S NOT. IT WAS A RAINY, RAINY DAY.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

What Will I Find?

WALKING ON THIS FUNKY BOARD WALK OVER THE SWAMP I HAVE TO PAY ATTENTION TO KEEP MY BALANCE. THE BOARDS ARE WONKY IN PLACES. ONE FALSE STEP AND . . . I DON'T EVEN WANT TO THINK ABOUT IT!

OOOOH. OOOOH. OOOOOH.

CLICK HERE TO SEE AN AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL POST (10,000 LANTERNS = 10,000 WISHES) FROM JAMIE SINZ, FOUND VIA PRÊT À VOYAGER.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Path

THIS IS THE WALKING PATH THAT I RIDE MY BIKE ON TO GET TO THE BIKE PATH. AREN'T THE LITTLE BIRCH TREES SWEET?

IT'S A LITTLE SAD TO SEE THE ALL THE LEAVES ON THE GROUND, BUT THE VIEW HAS OPENED UP. THERE'S MORE SKY, AND OFTEN MORE SUN - SO WELCOME AS THE AIR COOLS.

THIS IS THE BIKE PATH - THE NOROWOTTUCK RAIL TRAIL. IT'S ONE OF THE GREAT ATTRACTIONS IN THE PIONEER VALLEY.

CHECK OUT THE FLICKR PAGE OF AKIHIRO FURUTA. HIS FAMILY HAS A LITTLE SHIBA INU THAT THEY PHOTOGRAPH A LOT! SO SWEET & FUNNY. FOUND VIA CAMILLA ENGMAN.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Oh Happy Day!

IT'S 11:03 PM, AND MY EYES ARE FILLED WITH TEARS. UNTIL I KNEW
BARACK OBAMA REALLY HAD WON THE PRESIDENCY, I DIDN'T REALIZE HOW MUCH SORROW I'D BEEN HOLDING THESE LAST EIGHT YEARS. I'VE BEEN STUFFING IT.
I FEEL FREE TO HOPE AGAIN!

HERE IS THE POEM WRITTEN BY MAYA ANGELOU FOR THE CLINTON INAUGURATION. IT IS SO APT FOR THIS DAY.

On the Pulse of Morning
by Maya Angelou

A Rock, A River, A Tree
Hosts to species long since departed,
Marked the mastodon.

The dinosaur, who left dry tokens
Of their sojourn here
On our planet floor,
Any broad alarm of their hastening doom
Is lost in the gloom of dust and ages.

But today, the Rock cries out to us, clearly, forcefully,
Come, you may stand upon my
Back and face your distant destiny,
But seek no haven in my shadow.

I will give you no more hiding place down here.

You, created only a little lower than
The angels, have crouched too long in
The bruising darkness,
Have lain too long
Face down in ignorance.

Your mouths spilling words
Armed for slaughter.

The Rock cries out today, you may stand on me,
But do not hide your face.

Across the wall of the world,
A River sings a beautiful song,
Come rest here by my side.

Each of you a bordered country,
Delicate and strangely made proud,
Yet thrusting perpetually under siege.

Your armed struggles for profit
Have left collars of waste upon
My shore, currents of debris upon my breast.

Yet, today I call you to my riverside,
If you will study war no more. Come,

Clad in peace and I will sing the songs
The Creator gave to me when I and the
Tree and the stone were one.

Before cynicism was a bloody sear across your
Brow and when you yet knew you still
Knew nothing.

The River sings and sings on.

There is a true yearning to respond to
The singing River and the wise Rock.

So say the Asian, the Hispanic, the Jew
The African and Native American, the Sioux,
The Catholic, the Muslim, the French, the Greek
The Irish, the Rabbi, the Priest, the Sheikh,
The Gay, the Straight, the Preacher,
The privileged, the homeless, the Teacher.
They hear. They all hear
The speaking of the Tree.

Today, the first and last of every Tree
Speaks to humankind. Come to me, here beside the River.

Plant yourself beside me, here beside the River.

Each of you, descendant of some passed
On traveller, has been paid for.

You, who gave me my first name, you
Pawnee, Apache and Seneca, you
Cherokee Nation, who rested with me, then
Forced on bloody feet, left me to the employment of
Other seekers—desperate for gain,
Starving for gold.

You, the Turk, the Swede, the German, the Scot …
You the Ashanti, the Yoruba, the Kru, bought
Sold, stolen, arriving on a nightmare
Praying for a dream.

Here, root yourselves beside me.

I am the Tree planted by the River,
Which will not be moved.

I, the Rock, I the River, I the Tree
I am yours—your Passages have been paid.

Lift up your faces, you have a piercing need
For this bright morning dawning for you.

History, despite its wrenching pain,
Cannot be unlived, and if faced
With courage, need not be lived again.

Lift up your eyes upon
The day breaking for you.

Give birth again
To the dream.

Women, children, men,
Take it into the palms of your hands.

Mold it into the shape of your most
Private need. Sculpt it into
The image of your most public self.
Lift up your hearts
Each new hour holds new chances
For new beginnings.

Do not be wedded forever
To fear, yoked eternally
To brutishness.

The horizon leans forward,
Offering you space to place new steps of change.
Here, on the pulse of this fine day
You may have the courage
To look up and out upon me, the
Rock, the River, the Tree, your country.

No less to Midas than the mendicant.

No less to you now than the mastodon then.

Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister's eyes, into
Your brother's face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope
Good morning.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Crazy Spots


WHAT ARE THEY?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Look . . . look closer!

I NOTICED THE WAY THE RAIN PUSHED THE PINE NEEDLES INTO AN INTERESTING SHAPE . . .

. . . BUT WHAT'S THAT LITTLE THING IN THE MIDDLE?

HMMM . . . A FUZZY TRAVELER, MAKING HIS WAY IN CAMOUFLAGE.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Another Watery Walk



THE WATER WAS SO STILL TODAY, SO PEACEFUL.