Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Inhaling Springtime

Good Luck!

If you devour as much Asian food as we do, you've been over-exposed to Good Luck plants. Joe and I both like them. 

They are usually quite prolific, but growing in teeny-tiny pots. After a while, they begin to yellow; and then what? Well, I went in search of the answer and it seems that rerooting and/or repotting are in order.  So, I took a viable piece of bamboo-like stem and gave it a shot. The directions said to seal off the cut top with wax - DONE - and give it three months to sprout - DONE. Yes, almost three months to the day, a little nub appeared. YIPPEE! On the same day I noticed the action, Joe walked in with a new heart-shaped baby, fresh from the sushi store.
Gotta love it... and him. Thanks, Honey.
Good Luck to All.

Musical Interlude... More Richie Havens... Guitar Man

Vicki, you'll love this!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Click, Click

Rough-riding with Gramps and sewing for Ella (post below) can be exhausting. Not to worry. While Aubs was creating, Gav found a solution. What do YOU see in this picture? A little boy chillin'? Moi? I see a man-child, practicing for his later-life Lazy Boy, clicker in hand. 
Even eight-year-olds need time out and a man cave, eh?? :-) 
Driving is FUN!

Move Over, Vera Wang!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Taking A Break

The weather has finally turned gorgeous, so Joe, Mambo and I took a break to enjoy nature's gifts, yesterday afternoon. The over-the-mountain view from the patio shall soon disappear, as bursting foliage fills in the gaps and creates our cocoon. But for now, little birds are busy and large raptors lurk.
While engulfed in the shadow of wings, we spotted our resident hawk swooping... changing his mind... and landing in a tree. I guess he was taking a break, too. Joe thinks we might have saved a chickadee.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Real Time - Goldfinch Perched

Cute Movie

"The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" came recommended by a friend, whom I thank. 
It's a relaxing, sweet movie (**if you want it to be**), especially apropos if one is in serious "Downton Abbey" withdrawal and simply cannot get enough of Maggie Smith and a few others. :-) Or...

(1) If thoughts of one's golden years seem threatening, it speaks to power of suggestion for alternate thinking. 

(2) If youthful rebellion or young love are issues at hand, it delivers strong doses of differing opinions/goals/solutions from mother and son. 

(3) If ideas of travel to chaotic India are lingering in your gray matter, it portrays the ropes of reality with some clarity.

But then, you might be especially analytical and find yourself thinking about the **different ways a person can find themselves enslaved,** with life slipping by and desires unmet. Keep me posted on your interpretations, please...

But not to worry, 'cause there's lots of British humor to lighten up your thoughts. Cheers!


It shall soon be for sale in poster size, with all funds going to ONE FUND. A "must-have", to honor, memorialize and support. Read about it here.

It's The Cable Guy's Fault, Nicole!

Prettiful - Like Nicole!

No photo for my blog... is it any wonder, with all the confusion yesterday morning? 
It looks like NIK, Joe and I shall have to rely on wedding pictures, in July. For now, though, we want to extend our thanks for the fab visit. How sweet of you to go out of your way to incorporate us into a first business venture. 

We love you and miss you, already! Hurry back...

And don't forget to hug your Cable Guy. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

BARBRA - Congrats to a Favorite Bossy Woman!

Internet Photo

It's great to see two of my most-admired women mentioned on the same page. Gotta love bossy women! From YahooNews:

NEW YORK (AP) — "Ever since I can remember," Barbra Streisand told a crowd at Lincoln Center Monday night, "people have been calling me bossy and opinionated."
She continued: "Maybe that's because I am. Three cheers for bossy women!" The crowd roared.
Of course, the crowd — which included the singer's friends, Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton, was roaring at pretty much anything connected to her all evening, as the legend of song and screen was honored for her film career with the 40th annual Chaplin Award from the Film Society of Lincoln Center.

Richie Havens - Too Brief A Moment Of Time

We first shared space in 1969, at the most famous music festival of all. "Freedom" rang through the wet air, becoming an anthem for all time. We reunited on the same grounds in 2009 for a fantastic shared concert with Arlo Guthrie. 

This version of Peter Yarrow's "The Great Mandala" remains an all-time favorite. In this ever-spinning wheel of life, it is sad to lose such a gracious talent... done way too soon.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Real Time

It's Earth Day, Again...

With Earth and Arbor Days nearly colliding, this week, what better way to celebrate than to plant a tree or perennial garden...
Propagate the Idea... Propagate Life...
Watch what you plant propagate itself! 
Plant daffodil bulbs and be amazed. 
Plant a male and female Holly tree and watch babies spring up in nearby woods. 
Have fun, while you do the Earth a favor.

Music To My Ears - Billy Joel, Maybe??

Hot off the ROLLING STONE press:

Billy Joel performed his first full concert in over three years this weekend at the Stone Music Festival in Sydney, Australia. He stuck largely to the hits, though he did break out the album cuts "The Entertainer," "Zanzibar" and "Don't Ask Me Why." The 19-song set ended, of course, with "Piano Man." Though very few of the performances are on YouTube, someone did capture the vast majority of "She's Always a Woman."
Joel is contemplating a return to the road, and he's using the Stone Festival and his upcoming New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival gig as a test run. 
"I'm putting my toe back into the water to see how performing feels," he told Rolling Stone earlier this month. "That doesn't mean I'm going to walk away right after if I don't like how they go, but if I do like how they go, I'll probably end up booking some more gigs."

Sunday, April 21, 2013


Through the Windshield - SAD FLAG ncs'13
A visit to Cousin Maria's in Dingman's Ferry revealed that Pennsylvania is ahead of us,
with regard to what's blossoming. Flowering crab apple and cherry trees abound. 
But regardless of the gorgeous colors of Spring, flags flew at half mast... 
reminders of the tragedy that befell the nation, just last week. 

During the return trip, it felt fantastic to spot an eagle soaring high in the sky -
ever symbolic of hope and freedom... or, is it hope IN freedom?
Through the Windshield - HOPE SOARS ncs'13

Friday, April 19, 2013

"It's been a tough week."

Tonight, President Obama expressed the sentiments of most Americans, as he praised law enforcement for their successful capture of the second bombing suspect. Reality TV has been redefined. 
Sleep easier, Boston. 

The Power of a Musical Interlude

It's no secret, here on CMI, that Neil Diamond has played a ginormous part in the soundtrack of our lives. But who would expect his music to have such impact on a country full of citizens in shock and disbelief - a rhetorical question. Yes, the sporting world has decided to adopt the BoSox practice of partaking in Mr. D's Sweet Caroline
Here's what Neil thinks:

Update: Guess who showed up at Fenway Park, the day after I posted this??!! 
Yep, in a surprise appearance, he led the crowd in song. 
Kudos, Mr. D.

Musical Interlude... Fantastic Fantasia on IDOL... "Lose To Win"

Seems as though I joined Joe and tuned in to IDOL just in time, 'cause last night's performance by Fantasia was one of the most stellar I've ever seen, comparable to Heather Hedley and others on Broadway. If you're interested in some idle IDOL history, watch from the beginning. If time is of the essence, pick up the vid at 2:35 to see for yourself. 

Beyond-Belief Boston News...

We've become a war zone. Tell me it's not so. Praying hard for Massachusetts.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

The Food Fix

And so, it's back to the table with
Parsley Pesto 'n' Pasta Salad - 
(link) you know what to do

I'm excited, today. Christian is breezing through town and has time for lunch. Bri is working locally and is available, too! Joe will be home. The last four-of-us-together time was spent in a hospital room. We need to seize the day... fire up the grill... know when to be happy... know when to break bread and say...


Giving Thanks

To Appreciate A Sunrise

Real Time
Does it seem frivolous to enjoy a sunrise, when such pain exists just a few hundred miles away? This week's mega-blow to Boston, so soon after Sandy Hook, was further compounded by the neglect of the Senate. Neglect to listen to the masses. Neglect to display even an ounce of respect to so many too many wounded souls. 

The sickening argument that "... criminals won't undergo background checks, anyway..." makes me want to strangle someone. Ah, yes, violence spawning more violence. Is it possible that a check might reveal a potential criminal? 

 The sun'll come up...

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


Former Representative Gabrielle Giffords, who was severely injured in the Tucson shooting, wrote in a Twitter message: “Senate ignored will of the people & rejected background checks. Im not giving up. Constituents will know they obeyed gun lobby and not them.”

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Time Out to Pray

Yesterday's posts, ranging from a food-related one about pâté to the harsh entry regarding Boston, seem to typify the roller-coaster world we live in. It's my belief that simple pleasures are gratifying to most, but they are sometimes hard to grasp. 
Especially when... 

Mother Nature is pissed off, judging by her recent deliveries of natural disasters. The general public is further pissed because of the economy - losing a home will do that to a soul who just wants to make ends meet. Rampant common criminals are perpetually pissed and don't need reasons to murder, rape and rob. Most of all, though, radical terrorists - homegrown or not - are pissed to oblivion, ready to take down the masses within their weapons range. 

Once again, I think of (link) Chandra Levy. Coincidentally, there's an article about her, nearly twelve years to the day of her disappearance, in yesterday's (link) HUFFINGTON POST, right alongside news of the marathon tragedy. An endless cycle; and yes...

We've all seen the horrific images; there's no need to post them here. But at the very least, so many more innocent victims sure need to be kept in our thoughts and prayers.
Yesterday in Boston

Monday, April 15, 2013


Getty Image

LIM - Jambut Pâté

This is not the first time I've thought, (link) "Jambut," here on CMI. Today's version came together in a refrigerator clean-out. You know the deal - little bits of this and that, but not enough of anything to make a simple sandwich. So, with the help of my trusty food processor, I somewhat finely chopped batches of leftover turkey, chicken, potatoes and onions, tossing everything into my favorite Glidden mixing bowl, as I progressed. Next in was fresh celery, the only item left in the veggie cooler. Last, but most certainly not least, came the dressing... Chobani plain/fat-free, a heap of spicy mustard and freshly squeezed lemon juice. A hit of parsley flakes finished off what is now a boatload of pâté. Just remember...

Anything goes. It upsets me to first save and then end up tossing the little-bits. This is a much more satisfying solution.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Rasta or Fiesta? You Decide...

This post is for my pal, (link) Zu, who'll be very interested to know that two ginormous bags of "Lotta Loops" by Harrisville Designs yielded this 14 by 5 1/2-inch basket. Cost - $30 total. There are cheaper products available, but reviews are quite poor for them. I'm hoping for a sale that allows me to stock up, 'cause this is one fun and useful project! I've dubbed it a "Fiesta Fruit Basket", in anticipation of summer fare's arrival. And...

Herein as well is a sneak preview of this week's kitchen facelift... loving my new countertops and hoping they'll inspire many a delicious, colorful :-) meal.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

An Anniversary Of Sorts

On our way to a West Point wedding, circa 1995
The Weeping Crabapple Tree in this photo has a long history, here on Stacey. One bitter cold winter's night, we returned home after a great dinner with friends to find it uprooted, unable to stand under the weight of heavy snow. A neighbor came to its rescue, the following morning. Employing his tow truck and winch, he righted the tree and helped to stake it. It remained as such for a couple of years, till its roots strengthened. Each Spring, we await its gorgeous pink blossoms. 
And so it goes and so it goes... there's an analogy to be made.

It's a month, today, that Joe experienced the frightening heart attack that put him out of commission for a while. But by the grace of G-d and good docs, we joyfully await this year's flowers. We've a very long history together, and just the thought of what could have transpired sends shivers through my spine. I am so very grateful to be...

Giving Thanks.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Kid Rock - He's Not Just Whistlin' Dixie!

He's coming back to Bethel Woods and we sure do hope to be there (link) again, 'cause the 2011 show was a blast. And he's on a mission, this tour, to scalp the damned scalpers, who have long been responsible for casting a pall over any ticket-buying experience. 
Good Luck, Bob Ritchie - you have our support, as well as our best wishes for your new relationship with the real Dixie. :-)

Thanks to Bri for hooking me up with this vid:

Birthday Duo...

When I came across these adorable pictures, I just couldn't resist combining Vicki's 36th-4/11 and Keith's 18th-4/7 birthdays and extending one ginormous good wish for happiness always. Clearly, the message comes with boundless love   and instructions to...


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Family Interest - Good Libations

Thought to post this for Bri, Christian, Kim and Vick. I know they'll get a kick out of seeing their spirited and gorgeous Grands, way back when. They might also be interested in meeting the Maller Twins. On the very left is honorary "Uncle" Benny, Dad's lifelong friend. Center photo is Dr. Bernie, our family's physician for many years and a kind-hearted friend who sat with Aunt Vee, trying to comfort her in her final days. On a happier note...

 It just so happens that Christian and Uncle Benny share a birthday. I vividly recall his saying during my pregnancy, "Nicki, have the baby on my date and there'll be something special in it, for you." He did present me with a lovely locket, upon Christian's birth. Ah, memories... clearly, they are made of this... and...

Here's to good libations. Next time you indulge, think of this bar scene.

Monday, April 8, 2013

I Know, I Know... And I Apologize!

Sure, y'all have heard about Gran's bowl, ad nauseam. What can I say, except please just suck it up and come in for one more round. There are still things to be uncovered, amongst Mom's possessions. Don't forget, she was the keeper of Gran's treasures, too. So...
See this picture? See Gran to the right? See what she and her sister, Mamie, are leaning on? Okay, that's it, except to say that Gran was one hot momma. Check out her red nail polish and lipstick. And be sure to notice her and G'pa Nicholas, my namesake, in what I believe to be a portrait taken at a child's wedding, hanging on what I think was (my Godmother/Mom's sis) Aunt Vee's wall. The bowl did the rounds, after my Grandfather passed and Gran broke up her home. First, it resided at my Aunt's, then with us in Jamaica/Massapequa, then with Mom and Dad in Kiamesha, then Mom in Rock Hill and ultimately, here at The Old Homestead. 
I've selected the next Keeper, but she's presently unaware :-).

For the record, I'm guesstimating this shot to be late '50's or very early 60's, as Great Aunt Mamie died in 1963. This I remember because she died while Gran was on her once-in-a-lifetime trip to Italy, previously spoken of on CMI. My parents were under the influence of relatives who thought Gran should return home. I was quite vociferous in my opinion for them to silence the sad news, allowing her to fulfill a much deserved dream... and she did.

It's not the tangible bowl I love as much as the thought of the touch I share with Gran.

Real Time - Top Of The Mornin' To Y'all

Sunday, April 7, 2013

"FaceTime, G'ma?"

Gavin cracks me up. He's so danged BUSY... doesn't know what to do first and trust me, his room reflects his varied interests. In his own words, as he FT's me around it:
"I know, G'ma, it's a mess." 

Thing is, there's no time to be orderly, in his high-energy world. Sooooo, when I get a call to FaceTime, regardless of what I look like, curiosity always gets the best of me and it's imperative to see what's up in the moment. When he suggests taking my screen picture in the wee morning hours, I just quickly drop his view to the tile. Here, I laugh aloud, thinking of what Nicki F-W said to me: 
"The kids are just so uninhibited, Nicki... they don't even consider their appearance, the way we do."

 It's true! And I'm happy for them. 'Tis as it should be, in a world way too hung up on outer beauty... 
this diatribe with a hidden face and as I follow directions to capture his precious smile. :-)

Eight years old and a Whiz Kid. A Mischief Maker. 
Absolutely full of joie de vivre.
Demonstrating Dance Moves to a Captive Audience

Thursday, April 4, 2013

It's A Grand Day ♡

The thought for today was to write a few words in honor of Gran's birthday and then link to a past post or two. When I searched CMI for "Gran", though, the number of results surprised even this author. Who can choose?? Clearly a major influence in my life, memories seem to become more vivid, over the years. How can that be? Rhetorical question, really.
 I digress...

The very-young-Gran photo resided with Mom. Its star is obviously a Roaring Twenties beauty. Look at that gorgeous dress. And Gran with dark hair!  Thank G-d formal portraits were the rage, way back when, or we'd have very little by way of tangible memories. 

The amber beads Gran wore in the capture have been in my possession for quite some time. Though perfectly intact upon receipt, I decided to separate them with the intent of restringing smaller sets to be shared amongst several of Gran's girlie descendants. She would like that. 

Happy Birthday to a grand Grand Love... an amazing matriarch.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


No, no... it's not what you think... this is a family blog! I mean...

This morning, an old barrel was resurrected from the basement, headed for a fresh coat of paint.  It contained a loom with boatloads of stretchy loops. A couple years ago - OMG, it was (link) Loomin' Love, October 2010 - Little Missy had begun weaving a potholder but was not enjoying the craft. She quickly abandoned it in said barrel, where it stayed during a leave of absence from upstairs. I tossed the contents into the trash. 
Loomin' October 2010... Oh, my Goodness!
What could I have been thinking? Surely, those loops are useful for something. A quick save and five thoughtful minutes produced the idea... loop the loops together for a big ball of "faux yarn". Gee, I wonder what it's going to end up as. 
In a weak moment of wondering what would occupy today, Joe volunteered for active duty. All the while, he pretended to create his means of escape... it's been a loooong confinement. 
Ah, G-d bless his often-twisted sense of humor. 

"Is there enough to climb down the building?"


Autism Awareness Day

1 in 88 with
4-to-1 boys affected

Know your child. Early intervention is imperative. The stats are scary.

Suzi Noyes writes an incredible blog for the online Hampton Roads PILOT. I'd like to share  a recent (link) entry from
"Different Operating Systems".

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Sort-of Tofu Pesto Recipe To Try

Just got in a batch of my favorite tofu and found this new recipe on the side of the box. It sounds like a winner, to me, and is in keeping with my latest parsley pesto rage, don't you think? Of course, I'll play with it... no salt, lots of parsley in place of basil, and roasted-not-raw garlic. Whatever! Vicks, are you reading? xo
1/2 pkg. tofu
2 Tbsp. cider vinegar
2 Tbsp. apple or orange juice
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic
2 Tbsp. fresh minced basil 
1/2 tsp. salt (optional)

Place ingredients into food processor/Cuisinart for a whirl and enjoy.


Stopping Prime Time on Old Cape Cod 
While perusing hundreds of photos to score perfection for our "new" walls, I came across this favorite. It was taken during an off-season trip to the Cape, in October of 2010. We were looking at homes for sale on (link) Ocean Drive in Wellfleet, when we happened upon the perfect house with the not-so-perfect price tag and the better-than-perfect view. From high above other rooftops, we admired the sun, as it blazed its way through dense clouds, glistening on waters below and gifting me an exquisite silhouette.

Circa 2009
Time Flies!

This capture brings Cousin Nicole to mind. We've shared many a beach and photo op, on old Cape Cod. While I generally seek the brightest of sunrises and sets, Nic loves cloud-ridden stills. In her book, Old Sol is for the two S's - sleeping and sunbathing, as she dreams of encountering Jaws, up close and personal. But then, when dark and gnarly comes a-rolling in, it's time to snap a Kodak or two - with or without the big monster shark.

For the record, (link) AtomPrints did this enlargement for me. They will do any odd size you might require. Y'all might recall the wallpaper border I recently installed, also printed from a favorite Cape shot.

Here's to whatever floats your proverbial boat... beauty, after all, is in the eye of the beholder. 
Clearly, though, we can agree on the loveliness of Nicole!