Day in L.A.

 

Hi friends– Tomorrow is our anniversary– #42!  (Yikes! Where did all those years go?)  We celebrated last weekend with a 14 hour vacay- a little art, a walk along the beach and of course, breakfast, lunch & dinner!  Here’s our day:

Breakfast at my new favorite restaurant–Republique

    

Spent a tranquil morning at LACMA– (wonderful Reformation special exhibit from 3 German museums)

    

Lunch at Joan’s on Third–deli & market

There was an afternoon walk along the beach at Santa Monica.

And a stop for gelato on a stick  before we headed up to West Hollywood for dinner at Shake Shack.

Thank you Larry for walking through all the ups and downs of 42 years together.  It’s been grand–   looking forward to all we have ahead…

Italian Chopped Salad

 

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Hello all-  Took this salad to dinner with a table full of friends on Valentines Day.  A big Italian feast.  Jill made us all wear large heart name tags (ala Julia Child) and Tim was ready with the go ’round questions after dinner–
What’s the most romantic things your spouse has ever done??
What about you, most annoys your husband/wife??
If your spouse were famous, what would he/she be known for??

It was a a delightful evening, 12 old friends, most of us married around 40 years, and I appreciated my Larry all the more by the time the evening was over.

And– we had this bright salad–full of a lot of my favorite tastes.  It’s hearty enough to be dinner on its own– or just part of a big festive dinner with friends!

ITALIAN CHOPPED SALAD

Salad:
6 cups chopped green leaf lettuce*
1/4 pound hard salami, thickly sliced & chopped
3 oz. feta with herbs, crumbled
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1/3 cup bell pepper, chopped
14 oz. can garbanzo beans, drained & rinsed
1/2 cup good mixed cured olives

Dressing:
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tab. white balsamic**
1 tsp. honey
3 tab. parmesan romano
salt & freshly ground pepper to taste

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Spread the greens in a large salad bowl and top with the other salad ingredients.

In a container with a closed lid, shake together the dressing ingredients until they are thoroughly blended.  Pour over the salad just before you are ready to serve and do just a bit of tossing to coat all the salad.  (This amount makes 6 servings)  Enjoy!

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Valentines Day

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Happy Valentines Day All– It’s around the corner and I’m thinking it’s big fun to make cheery cards for kids and grand-kids.  (maybe it’s the old elementary school teacher in me –Valentines cut & paste crafts!!)   But who doesn’t like to pass out candy and little heart shaped notes to people they adore??!

And to help celebrate the day here’s a favorite little love poem:

Because we do all things together,
All things improve, even weather.
Our daily bread and meat taste better,
Grass is geener, rain is wetter.
–anonymus

Hope your Valentines Day includes a little chocolate, a lot of hugs and time with  people you love.  xox

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Bittersweet Thanksgiving

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Hello friends– I’m wondering about your Thanksgiving.  Was the turkey tender, the cranberries tart?  Did you eat too much pie and was there a baby or two to pass from lap to lap?

We had a sweet day with our kids in San Francisco and all our son-in-law’s extended family –with a new baby, some memorable pecan pie and an after dinner walk up the hill to see the sunset over the ocean.

But this week we also had an alarming health scare in the family.  Hospital stays, anxious nights and prayers for God’s love and mercy.  The difficult side of life.  I’m hopeful for a good recovery and thankful to be back home with my mom tonight.

Here’s a few of my favorite memories of the week up north (grand-kids, grandparents and that pie!) :
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Thankful Ani & Brian for the days with you and that baby Lois.

The Wonder of Thanksgiving

d99090“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”
–G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936, British writer, poet, philosopher)

I’m hoping to lose myself in wonder this Thanksgiving, recounting all the tender blessings of God in my life.  I wonder that he calls me his child, at the blessing of our much loved family and dear trusted friends that surround us.  I wonder at the beauty of the maple trees in the yard and the tin hands of baby Lois.  And I wonder at new friends, who read here and start conversations back and forth.   Lost in the wonder of God’s goodness– so thankful.

and thanks to silhouette design store for the graphic.

30 Days of Gratitude

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Hello Friends– It’s November 1st.  When our kids were small, it was the day we posted “The Thankful Heart Chart” on the fridge so they could draw pictures (donuts and dads, dancing and dogs…)  all month to show how they were thankful. I have well over 20 of those precious charts folded and tucked away in a file.  Love them.

But now our kids are grown and out, I need to continue daily thanks this month of Thanksgiving.  So I have a little list.  My plan is to answer one of these questions a day– just writing a word or two on my calendar until I have a whole month of thankfulness accrued.  I thought you might like the list too…

So here’s a list of 30 questions, one a day, to urge our hearts to be a little more grateful.

#1. What made you smile today?
#2. What is the thing you love the most about the person closest you?
#3. What is some comfort at home you are grateful for?
#4. What accomplishments in your life have brought you the most happiness?
#5. What has changed in the last year, that you are grateful for?
#6. What is the best part of autumn for you?
#7. What is something a family member did this week that gave you joy?
#8. What is something beautiful you saw today?
#9. What is something that was hard for you, but you did it anyway?
#10. What made you laugh today?
#11. What was your favorite family outing you went on this past year?
#12. What is your biggest talent?
#13. What gift did you love receiving this year?
#14. What is something that you love in nature?
#15. What is the sweetest thing that happened today?
#16. What is your favorite family tradition?
#17. What is one kindness someone did for you this week?
#18. What do you love about your parents/grandparents?
#19. What do you enjoy about the place that you live?
#20. What do you love about one (or more) of your friends?
#21. What trial or challenge has strengthened you?
#22. What is a dear memory from your childhood?
#23. What is the best part of your job?
#24. What freedoms are you grateful for?
#25. What occasion have you enjoyed with friends this month?
#26. What thing in your life gives you strength?
#27. What have you read/heard this year that made a difference in your life?
#28. What things in your days give you quiet and peace?
#29. What day in the last year brought you pure joy?
#30. What can I do to express your thanks for all these things?

All this thankfulness from my heart goes to the God is good and merciful and faithful in his immense love for us.

“Many, O Lord my god, are the wonders you have done.
The things you planned for us no one can recount to you;
were I to speak and tell of them, they would be too many to declare.”
Psalm 40:5

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thank you margeretbergart.com for the graphic.

Raspberry Scones

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Hello Friends– Hope you had a marvelous 4th of July.  Happily we had Ani & Brian down from San Francisco for the weekend.  We spent one good long morning in the huge M&L Fabric store rustling up ingredients for a new baby quilt (loved that!)  and yelped up a new favorite mom & pop Mexican place for lunch. We sat over long breakfasts and cups of coffee and on the 4th we all made the trek up to Ojai for the local Independence Day parade with Micah, Jodi and the grand-girls.  It was just great.

Sunday morning breakfast included hot raspberry scones.  I think you’d like them too…

RASPBERRY SCONES
2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tab. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
2 eggs
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 cup (about 6 oz.) raspberries

Glaze:
1 cup powdered sugar
2-3 tab. cream

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In a mixing bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.  Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or with 2 forks until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Then mix in the eggs and whipping cream.  Finally carefully fold in the raspberries (they will break up a bit).

Turn the dough out onto a floured counter and shape it into a disc about 2″ thick.  Cut about 20 small circles with a cookie cutter and set them on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray.

Bake the scones at 400 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes until they are nicely browned around the edges. While they are baking, whisk together the powered sugar & 2 tablespoons of the cream to make the glaze. If it seems a little dry, add the 3rd tablespoon of cream.  When the scones are all baked,drizzle on the glaze and they are ready to eat still warm from the oven!!

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Parade watchers in Ojai, our post parade picnic– and 3 enthusiastic flag wavers!
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