Sunday, April 1, 2018

Happy Easter to all!

I watched the Miss Potter film this week. Twice. It's the story of the lovely, creative, and somewhat eccentric Beatrix Potter, who created of all the darling Peter Rabbit and friends books. I have to say after viewing the film, that Beatrix was one hell of a woman. I deeply adore her passion and commitment and have most definitely invited her to my dinner party in heaven... whenever I get there. (The list is getting longer every year, I am going to need a large table!)


Sunday, March 25, 2018

Room Interiors— #2

I love a sunny, yellow living room. This is the 2nd in a series watercolor sketches of room interiors. My own living room walls just happens to be yellow, but not nearly this formal, or as spacious. The yellow on yellow colors in the living room remind me of one of my favorite paintings, The Yellow Scale, painted by Chezk painter František Kupka. Aren't the colors in his painting divine?

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Hello Spring!

There's more snow in the forecast, but the calendar
insists that it is spring!

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Room Interiors— #1

Inspired by the pages of Veranda, Elle Decor and Traditional Home magazines, here is the first in a series watercolor sketches of room interiors. I am always so enchanted by slick pages of generously spacious rooms filled with interesting furniture, various colors and textures and gorgeous artwork, which is far from my small and cluttered little "Mouse House! A girl can dream, can't she?

Back in 2009 I made 365 little watercolor paintings of chairs and journaled them on my blog called Chair Du Jour. Click here for the link! I am not quite that ambitious these days to do a daily watercolor sketch, so I will have to settle for an occasional room interior, when the mood strikes. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Daydreaming of spring

Three wicked New England Nor'easters in less than two week's time has me day dreaming of the glorious spring ahead. Here is how the wisteria that covers our pergola looked yesterday in a snowy blizzard—its branches, a nasty Medusa like tangle—and below is how the wisteria looks in May.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Frank + Marie's buffalo chicken soup

Here is a quick and tasty soup. Actually, it's a flavor explosion of a soup, with big, sassy flavors. It's spicy, creamy and delicious. Here is how you make it.

1 tsp. oil
2 tsp butter
1 package of Al Fresco brand buffalo chicken sausages (browned and sliced into rounds)
1 medium onion, large dice
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/3 cup of Frank's Hot Sauce (it's gotta be Frank's brand)
1/4 blue cheese dressing (such as Marie's brand)
2 carrots, peeled and cut into thin rounds
1 stick of celery, cut into half moons
1 can of canellini beans (drained)
salt and pepper to taste

To top, when serving
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese 
1/4 cup baby spinach leaves

In a saucepan, brown the sausages in a dash of the veg. oil and remove. Pull out the sausages and set aside. Add onions and garlic to the saucepan and simmer until clear. Pull out onion garlic mixture and set aside. Add the butter into the saucepan and melt, then add in 2 tsp flour. Stir for about a minute to cook the flour, then add in the the chicken stock. Bring to a low boil and whisk continuously for several minutes until the sauce is smooth and thickened a bit. Add in 1/4 cup of Franks's hot sauce and 1/4 of blue cheese dressing. Whisk again. Add the cooked onions, garlic, chopped carrots, celery, canellini beans and sliced sausages. Add salt and pepper to taste, and stir. Simmer for about ten minutes.

To serve
Ladle into bowls. Top with baby spinach and crumbled blue cheese.


Thursday, February 8, 2018

Mon dieu—Paris under snow!

Medici garden in the Jardin du Luxembourg 
(our secret magical place)

As if Paris wasn't beautiful enough—imagine Paris under a freshly fallen blanket of snow? Apparently snow is pretty rare in Paris, but this year it's gotten several magical dustings of the white stuff. One of these years Dan and I will travel to Paris in the wintertime, but for now these photos will have to hold us over.

The tree-lined Cours la Reine

Sacré Coeur, looking particularly enchanting

la tour eiffel

Monday, January 1, 2018

Happy 2018!

The month of January is named after the Roman god Janus. He had two faces so he could see both the future and the past. He was also the god of doors, and so my New Year’s wish for you all is that many doors open for you this year—let the joy in!