Monday, January 18, 2010

Monday, monday....

So it's Monday. AGAIN.

Bonne peine, didn't we just do this last week? I mean, I'm sure that a life of perpetual weekend would get boring after a little while but sometimes I think I would really enjoy being convinced of that little thing. Anybody?

We really did have a lovely weekend. The BC and I had a good bit of snuggling-on-the-couch time, windowshopping-for-things-we-can't-afford-yet time, and even a little doing-nothing-at-all time. C'était si bon, while it lasted that is. Somewhere in the middle we had a visit with our good friends J & P and their kids, Thing One & Thing Two.

Now & think it's important to point out that these are two of our FAVORITE people. Ever. These are the folks responsible (inadvertantly, at least) for much of the happiness in our present lives. While BC has only known them for 5 or so years, they have been in my life now for almost 16 years. As an angsty teenager it was their couch I cried on, their children I baby-sat and played silly games with. Many were the nights I spent (as an awkward 15 year old) listening to music with J, dancing with P, watching movies with them and the Groupies, talking about nothing in particular... and feeling like someone (at last!) understood me. In so many ways this Dynamic Duo helped me learn who I was, who I wanted to be, and why that was OK. I owe them SO MUCH...

Plus, these are the same lovely people who introduced me to my hubby, and then kept prodding at us both until we finally figured out what they already knew: namely, what a perfect match we are. Needless to say, we like these folks. They know us! They sport the same brand of Goofy as us. They GET us... and that is why, when we finally got together on Saturday to open Christmas presents together (January, Schman-uary) I was delighted to find this in my hands:

A DVD of maybe the most beautiful movie I've ever seen. Now the cover might be a little confusing... it looks like a scary movie, right? Wrong! This is a movie about how we dream, how we love each other, what it means to be a parent, and SO much more. Granted, it has its moments of small creepiness, but nothing too severe (trust me, I'm a total wimp. If it was scary, I would tell you).

It is absolutely BREATHTAKING, and if you haven't seen it you should go Netflix it. NOW. No really, scoot over there and I'll wait. While you're at it, move it to the top of your queue.

Are you back? You won't be sorry... the cinematography, the story, the music (oh, the SOUNDTRACK! and did I mention the cinematography?) Everything about this is a real treat.

I can't wait to watch it again and again. Thank goodness for friends with good taste. :-)

Monday, December 28, 2009

It's a marshmallow world in the winter...

It would appear that I am not exactly proficient with the disciplined writing thing. In fact, when it comes to blogging you might say that I stink. And not like a good, smelly cheese stink. I just don't seem to be able to make myself sit down and find something (hopefully) interesting to say on a regular basis... probably because I'm too scatterbrained most of the time to remember that I'm supposed to do it. I'm not giving up, though. I just have to find a way to kick myself in the pants and get it done! So here we are, in December, with a new year just about to begin, and I find myself with the chance to make a new start, get the ball rolling, do SOMETHING. Something, something, something... oh my.

Right now there is a beautiful white blanket over my hometown, or rather, there is the ratty remains of a white blanket that still has some gorgeous spots hidden around here and there. Last Thursday morning, while I was working the dreaded Christmas Eve day, "aren't we done yet?" shift it began to snow. And oh boy, what a snow! Now, say what you will about the weather in the midwest, with all the included inconvenience and mess but I LOVE snow. Especially at Christmas, and this was a doozy. In 12 hours or so we got 4 inches, but with crazy winds that drifted snow over steps and curbs and trees, really giving it that "marshmallow" look.

Needless to say, my in-laws dogs had a BLAST rolling around in it... Nothing like a couple of 100+ pound dogs in 2 feet of snow. And while travelling was a little scary on Thursday, everyone got here safe and sound for a gorgeous White Christmas. My sister-in-law and I even made snow angels.

When there's snow at Christmas I don't know how anyone can help feeling like a child, in the most wonderful way. The christmas lights twinkling on the tree and houses and the glitter of snow, the absolute stillness that seems to fall over the world just like the snow that changes familiar landscapes... all of this lends an air of magic.

I love the hush of cold nights and the crunch of boots in the snow but even more I love the feeling that anything is possible. And let's face it... adults might grumble about the roads and the temperature but how many children do you know who don't appreciate the beauty and the wonder of snow?

Shouldn't we all maybe be a little more like that?

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The merry month of May...

My goodness... how can it be May already? And May 2009 at that!?! Sometimes I lose days the way I misplace my house keys, but this is just RIDICULOUS. I know most of you had probably written me off as a flake by now, but I do have excuses... don't want to hear them? Ahem, well... back to business then. A herd of turtles indeed. I seem to be awfully slow in the "getting with it" department. This is not exactly surprising, as I happen to be a gold medalist in Procrastination. If you are similarly, er, talented then you doubtless you will understand. In my defense there have been a few things going on around here. "Right," you ask, "but what ARE they? And why on earth haven't you been TELLING us about them??" Well, then...

My sweetie and I bought a house. Last JUNE. And I've been meaning to post this ever since, but I ran into one little hiccup, because after we bought our house, on the 4th of July... he proposed to me! (I know, I know... a little backwards, but what they hey.) So the last 9 or 10 months have been consumed by wedding, wedding, and more wedding. A month ago, on April 4th 2009 we were FINALLY married in the church where I grew up. It was one of the most wonderful days of my life... even the parts that went by so quickly that a blur was all I remember. So... now what? Well, we're getting to that part. For now, though, I think I'll just leave you with a little teaser picture of our house. Stay tuned for more....

Friday, May 16, 2008

Say yes to cheese...

Gorgonzola Dolce, image from

I. love. cheese. I really do, as anyone who knows me can attest. A few months ago I was having dinner with my sister in New York at the fabulous Otto pizzeria, one of Mario Batali's restaurants. The restaurant is just delightful, if a little crowded. Our server was knowledgeable and charming and they have one of the best wine lists in NYC, but the FOOD. Mon dieu, the food was absolutely incroyable! We did order the Olive Oil Gelato, which will change your life, trust me, but the highlight, for me, was the cheese plate.

My darling sister was in charge, and ordered the following:

Parmigiano Reggiano - Cow, EMI
Ricotta - Cow, CT
Fontina - Cow, VAL
Coach Triple Cream - Goat, NY
Gorgonzola Dolce - Cow, LOM

Oh, my. Oh, my my my. All of these were good, of course, but the Gorgonzola Dolce was absolute heaven. The sharp creaminess of that cheese stuck with me, and months later the thought makes my mouth water. It had a tangy flavor that got in your nose and a subtle sweetness that made me want to gobble up the entire piece without sharing AT ALL (of course I did not, but it was tempting). C'est magnifique, indeed. A very close second was the Coach Triple Cream. A creamy/crumbly mild cheese, sweet but not too sweet, rich and even buttery... Ours was served with black truffle honey, apricot confit and brandied cherries but this cheese would be great I think with a little spice to offset it. In any case, this is the cheese my sister says she will buy "even when she is poor." That's EXACTLY how I feel about it ($13 per wheel from but SO very worth it) and about the Gorgonzola Dolce.

Coach Farm Triple Cream, image from

The Gorgonza Dolce is one of my all time favorites and is, of course, a typically Italian cheese, but I'm not discriminatory. From salty Feta to Parmigiano Reggiano, rich Havarti to smoky Gouda, Camembert to good old Sharp Aged Cheddar... I have (almost) never had a cheese I didn't like. Which might be why I love my Sweet Baboo so much. He totally gets it... we say YES to cheese. Good grief, I love that man.

I sometimes think that my great love for Paris (and France as a whole) is largely due to the sheer abundance of CHEESE (and the hot, crusty baguette to put it on). Hollywood claims that the French have 452 official government cheeses, but many sources put the number somewhere closer 1,000. In any case, to quote Meg Ryan in French Kiss, "I'm saying, I LIKE the cheese."

Friday, March 28, 2008

Like a herd of turtles...

Ernest Hemingway wrote a collection of little stories, sketches really, about his life in Paris when he was "learning to be a writer". This literary gem is entitled A Moveable Feast and in it he describes the sometimes difficult task of writing, of disciplining oneself concerning putting words on a page, whether anything good comes or not. The book was published by his widow after his death, and it is one of my absolutely most favorite pieces of writing EVER. It is sweet and simple, but with a sense of mystery and almost a little melancholy in places. To me it feels like a good chat with an old friend every time I pick it up. In the spirit of following the dear man himself, I have decided that I need a little discipline in my life. Plus, my mother and sister are going to lose their minds if I don't "just write something already!"

So here it is, mes chéris: in the spirit of Hemingway and of familial sanity, my little blog. It will probably be nonsense more often than not... I am not promising you a rose garden. I mostly imagine that my life does not contain enough lovely things to be interesting to the outside world, but every time I have that thought I then turn and find that I am blessed beyond all belief, and then I begin to wonder whether someone else might think those blessings were charming, funny, poignant or bittersweet, if only I would set them down. Peut-être. Nous verrons...

And so, we begin. At the beginning, of course...

Photo by J.Highland... "Paris at Twilight"