.....and other random stuff......

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

You're Welcome!

Who knew???? 

These are mine.....they actually get crispy! 
I'm in BIG trouble......

Friday, August 26, 2016

Faces Faces Everywhere

I know we are genetically programmed to see and recognize faces but geeze….this is getting ridiculous and slightly disturbing…..lol.
I never really looked closely at the tile in the boy’s bathroom. I mean, I chose it when we remodeled their bathroom but I never used their shower so I was never ‘up close and personal’ with it, until now.

Today I stepped into the shower and came face to face (literally!) with this: 
Do you see it?

By the look on his/her face I’m not sure who was more surprised…..
(ba dum tish!)

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Bologna Roll-Ups

There is a time in your life when all your friends pair up and there seems to be a glut of weddings to go to. You know how it is. It was during this time my then fiancĂ© and I spent a great deal of time at the ‘huge wedding venue’ in our town. It was a gargantuan place catering to all the needs of a bride from the tacky chapel (where they actually had a cloud effect for the bride to enter, complete with dry ice vapor and colored lights!) to crystal chandeliers at every turn.

They had enough rooms to cater multiple receptions at one time. It was a great way to comparison shop, so to speak. We used the cocktail hours to slip from our invited party to crash some of the other receptions, just to see what they had to offer. (I would have liked to have sampled their entrees too but that would have required more duplicitous shenanigans than just mingling with the crowd during the cocktail hour!)

It was during one of these reconnaissance missions that I was introduced to a canapé that was so perfect in its simplicity I immediately knew I needed to reproduce it at home. It was just a slice of salami rolled around a sweet baby gherkin, cushioned by a dab of cream cheese but the juxtaposition of the sweet and salty was perfection!

I tell this story as the prelude to this:
I made them when the boys were little. It was the perfect finger food for little hands. But one day I didn’t have the required ingredients so I improvised and I invented ‘Bologna Roll-ups’! (I’m pretty sure I didn’t really invent them but I’m taking credit anyway!) 
It’s just a slice of bologna rolled around a sliver of cream cheese. It was a hit! They liked them better than the salami version so it became a staple in our lunch repertoire.

And to this day, when I’m feeling nostalgic, (or when I’m just jonesing for some bologna) I still treat myself to a few….

They may not look pretty but they sure taste good!  Right guys? 

Monday, August 22, 2016

Punny Monday

It was an emotional wedding. Even the cake was in tiers.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Friday, August 19, 2016

I LOVE the Smell of Sulfur in the Morning……

Eggs are versatile little things aren’t they? They can be scrambled, fried, poached, baked, coddled, boiled, even eaten raw (yuck) their versatility is endless.
I always have eggs on hand and I almost always have some hard boiled eggs in the fridge to grab for lunch.

So, yesterday as I was doing my morning chores I saw I needed to make some. No problem, I grabbed a pot and a few eggs, ran some water over them, set them on the stove, started the timer and continued on with my morning routine.

A little while later, as I sat at my computer, I heard a strange POP.
Hmmm…….. that was an odd noise. Then I started to smell something.....peculiar …..
Husband was making bread in the machine and my first thought was maybe something had gone awry and it was popping circuit breakers. Then I heard another POP, and another, and the smell was getting stronger so I got up to investigate.

I entered the kitchen just in time to watch in fascination as a white blob arced across the room!
Oh, SHIT!!! I TOTALLY forgot about the eggs!!
I was so distracted by what I was doing I didn’t even hear the timer when it went off!


I quickly grabbed the pot, threw it in the sink and ran cold water over it but it was too late.

I have to say I have never seen burned egg SHELLS before………. 
I sometimes worry I will run out of things to post about…..
I see that may not be the real problem here…..lol

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

It’s Pink And I Am In Love!

My friend Annie is a fiber artist. She has an eye for composition that I admire and envy. She can put together scraps of fabric in such a way that tells a wonderful story!
Recently she posted these pictures of a piece she was working on and I immediately fell in love! 
It was wonderful!

I studied the pictures, looking at every little detail and wishing in my heart of hearts it was mine.  

Fast forward to the day we met up for a visit. When I saw her walking into the shop with a bundle tucked under her arm my heart skipped a beat! 


It now resides on the Big Red Chair, and whenever I sit there I caress it and cuddle it and smile.
Thank you so much Annie!!! You will never know how much I love it! 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Punny Monday

Smaller babies may be delivered by stork but the heavier ones need a crane.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Throwback Thursday con't.....

Since CJ asked me if my father kept in touch with his army buddies I thought I'd add this:

Historical Wonders: Elkan Park Community

Post-WWII cul-de-sac off Palmer Avenue thrives today.

By Katherine Ann Samon

One block past Central Elementary School, take a right turn onto Elkan Road, and enter Elkan Park, a housing community where families are as connected with each other today as were the original families in 1947, when the neighborhood was built.
Indeed, on a recent Sunday morning, a reporter taking photos of the circle formed by the cul-de-sac, drew families out of their houses in a way that was reminiscent of photos from the late 1940s.
Linda Filby, whose daughter Brianna was biking around the circle, has lived in Elkan Park for four years. "When parents pick up their children from play dates at my home, they're always surprised that there's this hidden gem of a neighborhood right off Palmer."
Elkan Park, which has a Larchmont address, is in the unincorporated Town of Mamaroneck.
In the circular park is a flag pole and plaques to the WWII veterans who built the hamlet, and to a couple named Benno and Madelon Elkan.
Paul Chateauvert is co-president, with wife Sue, of the Elkan Park Association.  "What's important to me is the story of Mr. and Mrs. Elkan," he said. "That they were of German descent, and the generosity of what they did for Larchmont's veterans coming home from WWII."
Paul and Sue are long-time Larchmont residents who graduated from Mamaroneck High School. They've lived in Elkan Park, where they raised two grown sons, for 12 years. In fact, they live across the circle from the house Paul grew up in when his family moved from New Jersey in 1969. A different young family lives there now.
They're also the current keepers of two thick photo albums that tell the story.
Post-WWII housing shortage
Servicemen returning home from the war encountered a historic housing shortage, finding themselves living with their families, in-laws, or in furnished rental rooms.
The shortage was also felt in Westchester.
Larchmont ingenuity
In February 1946, ten Larchmont servicemen founded Larchmont Veterans' Building Corporation with the goal of building homes for themselves.
Former Army Capt. John C. Merritt, the group's president, suggested building "cluster housing," meaning that some of the 50 houses, or "units," would be attached. This would allow them to save on land costs, and building in mass meant they could build high quality houses at $10,000 each, which was the mortgage obtainable through the G.I. Bill.
The group expanded to 50, with each investing $600, giving them  $30,000 for land purchase. Combining their housing benefits, they secured a $500,000 construction loan.
Looking for land
On Richbell Road, two acres fell through because the owner wanted them to purchase additional  six. Next was land at Boston Post Road and Mayhew, but the multiple-family design met strong opposition.
 "The local newspaper dubbed the project 'Foxhole Acres,' which did not help in getting the property rezoned," wrote Thomas Carl Thomsen in his 1999 autobiography, "A Walk Around the Square." He had served in the Air Force and was one of the of the group members.
The calvary: the Elkans
Benno and Madelon Elkan immigrated from Germany in 1906 when Benno opened a branch of a Frankfurt metals company.  They moved to Larchmont's Prospect Avenue in 1918.
Mr. Elkan became a governor of the Commodity Exchange of New York, and a U.S. advisor during WWII.
Their daughter had served in the war. Hearing about the plight of the veterans, the Elkans sold a rocky 5-and-a-half acres facing Palmer Avenue, valued at $42,000, to the vets. Some reports have the sale price at $30,000, another has it at $25,000.
Building begins
The veterans got the land zoned, and convinced the town to install an access road, sewer system, and utilities.
They broke ground in November 1946. Larchmont architect Gerald J. O'Reilly donated his services to design 12, two-story Colonial-style buildings of the highest quality, built in brick with slate roofs and copper flashing. Inside were oak floors and plaster walls.
Three buildings faced Palmer Avenue, with nine along a dead-end road that would wind around a small circular park. By varying the amount of attached homes, or "units," per building, the structures would have somewhat  individual appearances. While one building had two attached units, eight had four units, two had five, and one had six. Each had two bedrooms, one-and-a-half baths, a living room and dining room, cellar, attic, and garage.
Each unit would be individually owned, responsible for its separate taxes, utilities, maintenance, etc.
Judith Doolin Spikes, Larchmont's Official Village Historian, wrote about the group's efforts to buy in bulk to offset costs. Told that the cheapest bathtubs were at a New Jersey business, Merritt transported two at a time in his Jeep, requiring 25 trips. "The only problem came the day it rained…The Jeep broke down under the load because someone had put a plug in a tub and it filled with water."
When the project was complete in August 1947, the Elkans, impressed with veterans' efforts, refunded their $30,000. 
Thomsen wrote the following about the Elkans, "The community was named Elkan Park in memory of their son who had not survived the war. It seemed fitting that 50 survivors should build a memorial to one who had not survived."
Other sources claim that the group had intended to name the project Foxhole Acres, and changed their mind in gratitude.
In Elkan Circle, a flag pole was erected in conjunction with a plaque that reads, "A community planned and developed by World War II Veterans with the help of others who shared their beliefs. May 30, 1948."
When Mr. Elkan died in 1960, a plaque in memory of the couple's efforts was added. In 1969, Mrs. Elkan established a 20-year Capital Improvement Fund. She died in 1971.
Elkan Park today
"At one point in the early years, there were over 50 children in the Park under six years of age," reads a passage in the handbook that every incoming owner receives, about the young GI families.
These days, the population is a mix of couples of all ages, single-parent families, older residents, and returning Elkan Park residents. Though families with children are still prevalent, due in part to being walking distance to schools, and the affordability of the homes.
The units are not condos or co-ops, and so have no common charges. But Elkan Park Association, originally set up by the veterans, includes all homeowners and contains guidelines on subjects such as on remodeling to preserve the look and spirit of the neighborhood.
Some pooling of resources continues. For instance, when it's time for maintenance such as gutter cleaning, residents come together to get a group rate.
Socially, the enclave continues a 60-year tradition of  yearly block party.
"Because of the design and layout of the buildings," said Sue, "we have the benefit of individually owned  homes and a close, community feeling."
And a legacy of groundbreaking, affordable family homes that lives on.
My father was one of the original founders of the association....and apparently a member of the softball team! 
 (top row, far right) Dig those team shirts!! (methinks it was really the bowling team.....)

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

I Made the Right Decision

[Okay, let me preface this post by saying I am a traditional girl who likes square rooms. I know and understand  90° angles in a house.]

This house is contemporary.  I guess that means the design calls for asymmetry. To that end the architect designed it with all sorts of odd walls that come together at unusual angles.


For example, in the laundry room the wall suddenly turns a corner and forms a small triangular space they made into a counter top. It’s next to the sink so I guess it does serve a function but they put a regular square cabinet under the sink wasting all that space under the counter.
I suppose they did this because it backs up against the master bath. And the master bath is a plethora of odd walls at all sorts of strange angles.
We took down the plant shelf (that was so 1980’s) and that has helped quite a bit.

Which finally brings me to the point of this post……...

In taking down the plant shelf Husband had to open up part of the wall. When I happened to look inside the first thought that popped into my head was, “OMG!!!  Look at that rat’s nest of two by fours! I was certainly right when I decided against becoming an architect. All that math would have killed me!!”

Monday, August 8, 2016

Punny Monday

The experienced carpenter really nailed it, but the new guy screwed everything up.

Friday, August 5, 2016


......is dirty business!!!
On the UP side....it gives me an excuse to not have to clean!!! 
(like I need an excuse....lol)

Tuesday, August 2, 2016


When Son1 was little there was a time he was having ‘issues’. He was sleep walking, had night terrors…..something was bothering him but he wouldn’t talk about it. We tried to get him to tell us what was wrong but he clammed up like a….well, clam!
Until one night when I was tucking him into bed.
We did our usual nighttime ritual, read the stories, said goodnight to all his ‘friends’ i.e. his stuffed animals, including Wolfie.
Wolfie was a puppet. A cherished member of the window seat gang.
I don’t know what came over me but as we said goodnight to everyone I grabbed Wolfie and started talking to Son1 in what I thought was a comforting Wolfie like voice.
And to my surprise he responded as if Wolfie was alive and a separate entity. Not just Mommy with a puppet on her hand!
So I went with it. I, or rather Wolfie, asked him what was bothering him. And Son1 spilled the beans!

I don’t remember now what the problem was or how we resolved it but I do remember that for a long time after Wolfie was part of our night time ritual.  Every night Son1 would tell Wolfie how his day had been and if there was anything going on he would ask Wolfie for advice. 
I guess it worked out okay. Son1 isn’t too badly screwed up.
But at the time I remember how terrified I was!!!I had no idea what I was doing!!! There’s a HUGE difference between a background in Early Childhood Education and a degree in Psychotherapy!!!   

Monday, August 1, 2016

Punny Monday

Atheism is a non-prophet organization.