Sunday, August 1, 2010

Weekend Field Trip Part II

Jimmy 4 wm.jpeg

Tra, la, la.   Flying or floating into Dallas…

g 13 wm.jpeg So, this is why you have to go hungry if you’re going to Fm 1410 B(see previous blog).  Jimmy’s is on the same corner and they have the best sandwiches! And just like the sign says, they have all kinds of imported goodies: fresh meats, sausage, pasta and entree’s to take home.  But if you can’t wait till you get home- order a sandwich.  Jimmy’s was voted “Readers Choice”, Best Sandwich in D Magazine this month.  Our favorites?  We love the Jimmy sandwich with spicy sausage and peppers.  They have a great Muffaletta and a lovely Prosciutto Panino too.  The latter is served with thick slices of fresh mozzarella, thin slices of prosciutto, basil and sliced tomato.  Both of these sandwiches are huge and a small can easily serve 2 people.  All the sandwiches are served on wonderful bakery bread and not some kind of Wonder Bread fluff.  Grab a bag of chips and select a drink from their vast selection of sodas and vino.  You can then sit outside or at tables at the entrance of the store.  Or, our favorite place is in back.  Way back.  Pass the restrooms, back.  It’s kind of a secret and you’ll probably feel conspicuous the first time, basically, walking through the kitchen and into the back to a “secret” room.  There are tables, paper plates, napkins and plastic ware for your convenience.  Bring your laptop or your friends as this is the Starbucks of the sandwich world. 

Jimmy 6 wm.jpeg



Here’s Lovey enjoying the nice weather last spring.  The view is “interesting”. (this is downtown Dallas, mind you)  But this is forgivable for the “we’re not in Texas anymore” experience and the food.



You can pick up some great imported foods like these crackers.  These little cracker Diva’s are a favorite and fly off the shelves and are out of stock till Mike can get them in again.  Apparently they come from some far away place, New York or Italy, and people buy them by the box.  Curse them when they don’t leave any for us!Jimmy 1 wm.jpegYou know what they are?  Really, they’re just  saltines with olive “flakes” on them.  Sounds simple enough but they’re so tasty.  And inside the above package are individual packs so you can pop them into your purse or backpack for a “little taste of Italy”  anytime.   I think I’ll christen them the 2010 version of “Calgon, take me away!”.

Jimmy’s Food Store is located at 4901 Bryan at Fitzhugh in Dallas.

Jimmy 7 wm.jpegPhoto of a pretty door in Dallas.

Shouldn’t you be gone already?!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Weekend Field Trip

I remember one of my first fieldtrips in kindergarten.  We went to the fire station. It must have been close to the school as we walked there.  Every one had a “buddy” that we were partnered with.  We all held hands with our buddy and walked down the sidewalk two by two. 

I remember my kindergarten teacher too.  She wore frosted lipstick and had a platinum, perfectly coiffed, beehive up do.  She was so shiny.  She wore dresses and sensible heels and looked like she stepped right off the “Cakes and Pies” page of a 70’s Betty Crocker cookbook. 

It was probably a great fieldtrip.   There’s this one thing, though, which I remember more than the red fire trucks, awesome fire pole and real life firemen.  That “one thing” was the kid who was my buddy.  He was the boy in our class known for nose picking.  This boy was also my hand holding buddy.   Icky.

I still love field trips and these days, since I’m all grown up, I get to pick my buddy.  Me and my buddy’s (Lovey and the youngest and eldest Chilie) took a fieldtrip into Dallas last weekend and found ourselves at  FM 1410 B.  Tommy “Spiceman” Spicer sells an eclectic assortment of veggies and herbs to local restaurants.  He even grows some of them himself in a garden out back in the shadow of downtown Big D.   He’s a Delta swamp musician too and impromptu melodies from his custom, self-made “guitar” are an additional treat. 

He’ll sell you a bag, half a pound or so, of a beautiful  assortment of mushrooms for $10 cash.  He’ll also give you some ideas for preparing them if you ask. 


(I’m back from a brief interlude to catch and liberate the cicada that was bouncing off everything in the kitchen.  Momma Cat brought it in and you could hear it pinging off the hanging copper pots and ricocheting off the ceiling fan.  It was like magic gone mad in a scene from Nanny McPhee.  Whew!)


Here are the beautiful mushrooms, haricots verts (French green beans), fettuccine and tomatoes.

g 9 wm.jpeg

We like the mushrooms prepared simply. 

Sauté sliced garlic in olive oil just till fragrant.  Add  a couple tbsp.’s  of butter and heat till melted.  Add a glug of white wine.  Add the mushrooms and sauté momentarily.  Add the sliced tomatoes and sauté just till heated through.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Serve over prepared fettuccine.  Serve good bread to sop up the sauce.

The verts were sautéed in butter with orange slices (orange zested and pith cut off), zest and toasted pine nuts. Salt and pepper to taste.

g 10 wm.jpeg

Beautiful food - simply.

Do you want to go on a fieldtrip to see Tommy?  Look for this place, FM 1410 B, in the corner shopping center of 4901 Bryan at Fitzhugh in Dallas.

g 11 wm.jpeg

The boys will greet you at the door.

g 12 wm.jpegThat’s just the kind of place it is.

And make sure you go hungry.  I’ll tell you why later…

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Monday, Monday on Tuesday

We’re going to skip all the chatter and go right to a few of my favorite things in the backyard…

Hummingbird at the Cypress Vine.

g 2 wm.jpeg

Red ladybug, pink rose

g 3 wm.jpeg 

g 6 wm.jpeg 




Hungry Swallowtail caterpillars filling up on parsley






Baby Anole lapping up a water droplet                               

g 7 wm.jpeg

                                * * * * * * * * * * * * *

“The fragrance, my friend, that floats to you this moment, streams from the tent of the secrets of God."      - Rumi

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Wishing on a Christmas star in July

Notice the pretty Christmas button to the right?  This would be the project I mentioned last post.  I saw this opportunity and thought “Why not?”.  Can you imagine?  --a crew of Christmas elves arriving in Santa’s sleigh or Matthews van (sans red velvet and fur collars due to the Texas heat) and decking the place out?  Joy to the world!     

So I sent in my photos.  Just 5.  They wanted to see collections. We’ve got those a plenty. And a mantel.  Santa visits ours and fills the stockings every year.  Furniture pieces that can be decorated.  Do we have too much?  Windows.  Windex to the rescue.   And a clean and fresh place.  Lovey and I captured and relocated all the dust bunnies and pronounced the place pretty cheeky –or fresh.  Also wrote about some of our family Christmas traditions.  Now we wish upon a Christmas star that we will be chosen!.

We think we have good house decorating “bones”.  What do you think?

Here’s the 5 photos I submitted:

House 5




Living room




Copy of House 4.jpeg









House 6.jpeg




Break-fast area













House 2.jpeg




Dining Room





I wanted to send these photos too:

Remember (June post) the newly decorated, Holiday “altar” in the foyer?

hb 5 WM.JPEGAnd I redid all the shelves in the den. House 1wm.jpeg




Right side shelves and Momma Cat







House 3 wm.jpeg




Shelves and Mantle




Another dining room photo with Pan (in the corner on the phonograph) wearing his party hat. 

House 2 wm.jpeg

I guess that’s it. 


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Things that happened in June

A couple of messages asking me where I’ve been (Thank you friends!)and why there’ve been no recent updates have prompted me to put together a random photo collage of June happenings.

In no particular order or relevance here is what June looked like:

Found some glowing mushrooms and planted them in the garden.  Love this.

June 14 wm.jpeg Watched a sunset or two.

June 5wm.jpeg

Was very successful growing Patty Pan’s that I didn’t even plant and don’t want to eat.  Hoping they’re like zucchini which you can make yummy bread out of and which I do like to eat.

June 2 wm.jpeg

Took a photo of this butterfly just for you.  I really did.

June 11 wm.jpeg

Bleached number 2 son’s hair because he let me.  It was a little orangey so we called him Dragon Ball Z, or DZ for short, till I got hold of more bleach to bleach it again.  Scary.  He didn’t mind.

June 10 wm.jpegPut these dried sunflowers outside and they looked so pretty there I decided you needed to see them too.  Pretty little dead things.

June 12 wm.jpeg Went to several outdoor concerts.  This is Sara Hickman rockin’ out with Mr. Skinny Red Pants.  Did you know that she succeeded Willie Nelson as the Official State Musician of Texas this year?  Why, yes she did and is.  She’s a neat person too that does a lot for children and women.

June 6 wm.jpeg She will make you laugh.  Especially when she takes off her hair mid concert.  She had us believing that her “I Dream of Jeannie” ponytail was real.  You’ll just have to see her for yourself.

June7 wm.jpeg She gave us hugs and told us funny stories.  We love summer concerts and Sara Hickman.

June8wm.jpeg Did lots of “picking” and “finding” of goodies.  At one garage sale I found 3 things I adore:  a pretty floral English tin to add to my collection… and inside… vintage Birthday candle picks!  Just look at them.  Why do I love them?  I don’t know (said in a high, squeaky voice)!  And look at that Anthropologie towel with little crocheted black and white chickens!  It still had it’s $18 price tag.  Fifty cents, people.


Came home one night to cupcake shaped Rice Krispie treats (with sprinkles, we luv sprinkles) made from limited edition Cupcake Rice Krispies.  Double whammy.

June 15 wm.jpeg Saw this growing and knew it had to be shared.

June 13 wm.jpeg And last, last, last, the very last thing I did in June was eat some Banana Pudding that I think has the potential to change the world or at least bring happiness to a big chunk of it.  I will have to get you the recipe.  Not now though.  This is just a back-blog.

June 1wm.jpeg

Mmmmm.   Banana Pudding.

Promise to write again this week as I have just completed an interesting project.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Before and After

caterpillar 7 wm.jpeg

That is a big thought.

I wasn’t thinking of this today when I threw away a fuzzy caterpillar.  Not “away” away.  Just into the compost bin “away”. 

He was eating the lettuce in my garden.  The lettuce that I haven’t cared to eat.  The lettuce that has grown the size of Jack’s beanstalk.

caterpillar 8 wm

Then I read this little thought and had guilt.  Beanstalk size GUILT.  Butterfly guilt!  Who would ever throw away a butterfly?

I had to go and rescue the “butterfly” from the compost bin.  The compost bin is an interesting place.  Lots of live crawly things, and smelly things and composty things.  And me searching, searching for a potential butterfly. 

Luckily, we found each other.  He was rescued… and so was I. 

caterpillar 1 wm.jpeg

Because “butterfly guilt” is a serious, serious thing.  To almost be something, and then not be, for any number of reasons is serious indeed.  To miss your  potential, your butterfly life, is very serious business.

Then D.R. brought this home from school…

caterpillar 2 wm.jpeg“Before and After.”  Doesn’t that just sum up a caterpillar’s life?  

I’m trying hard to focus on my “butterfly life”.  Time to move on from the caterpillar-ness and be my “before and after”.

What about you?

Technorati Tags:

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A Predilection for Clocks

HB 4 wm.jpeg

I’ve run across several interesting clocks lately and chose to heed  the nudge and pick them up.  Perhaps with another Birthday in the rearview mirror I’ve got time on my mind.  Now I have to find them a home…

In my foyer there is a a piece of furniture I fondly refer to as the “Holiday altar”.  I usually decorate it for the season.  It’s in need of an update.  Magazines are my usual source of inspiration at these moments.  One of my fav’s is House Beautiful .  This months issue is the Big Advice Issue and it’s wonderful.  Look what I found:

HB 1 wm.jpeg

This is the bedroom of a designer out of L.A., Dan Marty.   Of particular interest is the long table.  The “gathered over time and travels” look is very appealing to me.  He calls it “British Colonial with a West Indies flavor and Napoleon III thrown in”.  Who knew I was so sophisticated?! 

Marty likes collections but says they need order.  “Here are some general rules.  You need harmony and balance, contrast, the right combination of elements and scale.  Symmetry and asymmetry.  Light and dark.  Group your collections - they look more important that way.  Like things with like things.  And don’t line objects up like they’re on a march.  Vary heights.  One more thing I do is stack a few antique books and put an object on top.”

I like him.  A lot.  So here’s the altar:

HB 2 wm.jpeg Using Marty’s pointers, I gathered up some stuff.

HB 7 wm.jpeg

I think this looks pretty good. But it needs just a little something else…

hb 5 WM.JPEG

A few extra details completes my foyer update!  Do you think Marty would approve?  Can you find the four “clocks”?

Here, again, is my inspiration picture and the completed foyer:

HB collage 9 wm.jpeg

“Thanks” to my older sister for the lovely, English, turquoise tin to add to my collection.  It mirrored the shape of the wicker,teapot basket and added balance and color. 

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

How does your garden grow?

garden update1 wm

The garden has been both interesting and frustrating.  I’ve found that just because you plant something doesn’t mean it will grow into something you can eat!  But I have harvested several salads in the last couple of weeks.

garden update 7 wm

There are several types of lettuce here and some cute, little radishes and 5 (count them!) sweet peas.  They were all delish and had the family hunting in their salads for the goodies. 

garden update 2wm.jpeg

Other results… the broccoli was all flowers and useless.  The cauliflower is looking pretty good, I’m guessing.  I went out today and it’s leaves were like Swiss cheese from the many perfectly camouflaged caterpillars that were calling it home.  I used natures pest remover, my fingers, and gave them a new home over the fence.  I hope none hit my son who was mowing on the other side!  The cuc plants are still pretty small but they have yellow flowers.  The radishes have really taken off and were planted from seed.  I’m on my second crop. 

garden update 4 wm.jpeg

Here is my one glorious poblano.  Hmmm, how can I stretch one  chile relleno to feed 6 people?

garden update 6 wm.jpeg

Oh, this is funny.  This is some kind of subterranean evil that has taken up residence in the yard.  It’s a mole or vole or whatever.  Lovey went all “Caddy Shack” on it last week with some smoke bombs.  I don’t think I ever got a straight answer on whether that business was organic.  We still have holes so I’m calling this one for the subterranean’s.  Holes, moles, voles.  Interesting.  There’s probably something to this.

Last picture…

garden update 5 wm.jpeg

Here is one of the seven different tomato plants.  They’ve all got flowers now and even a few baby tomatoes.  I hope the timing on the lettuces and tomatoes will coincide.  

That’s all for the garden update.  How does your garden grow?