Monday, November 30, 2009


So, one of the reasons I like going OUT for Thanksgiving dinner is that there's no preparation and no clean-up. There's plenty of time to visit with cousins, aunts, uncles, etc. One of the reasons I DON'T like going out for Thanksgiving dinner is that there are NO LEFTOVERS! Of course, I could have gone through the buffet line at the Club with my Tupperware© container, but that would have been too tacky. It's just not the same as raiding your auntie's refrigerator.
On Friday morning I took myself to the market to see if there were still some turkey parts left in the butcher section. Yes! I bought a 1/4 breast and 2 legs. So, on Friday, Saturday AND Sunday, Larry and I had our very own Thanksgiving feast. In addition to Von's, my good ol' buddy, Trader Joe helped immensely with our dinner.We had turkey, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce, creamed spinach. For dessert I tried this online recipe for pumpkin cheesecake pie (bleah) didn't quite taste as I'd expected. I did make a batch of Perky Turkey cookies though and they saved the weekend!O.K. I'm REALLY tired of turkey now. The last of the turkey will be diced up along with vegies tonight for a stir-fry with brown rice.
How much turkey did you eat over the weekend? Got any great recipes for leftovers?

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Friday, November 27, 2009

Family, Food, Fun

We had our family Thanksgiving feast at Del Rey Yacht Club yesterday. It was really nice. There's a big dining room at the was packed. We were in a separate, smaller dining room right near the buffet!!!

The Big Dining Room

The food was great! There were all the usual T-giving choices, turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, yams, green beans, grilled vegies, filet of sole, lamb w/ mint jelly. There was a table of beautiful salads.

Our Small Dining Room

THEN, the dessert table was faboo...pumpkin pie, pecan pie, apple crisp, fresh berries and more. Wow!
We had around 30 people in our little dining room. My Mom brought beautiful balloons for the tables. Aunt Mae hosted all of us for the evening. She always sets the tables with candies and nuts....just in case there isn't enough FOOD!!! Oy!
I always have fun hangin' with my cousins. It was a wonderful evening. I hope you had a great celebration too! Of course, when we were done with dinner, all of the kids pulled down the balloons and pierced them so they could inhale the helium and run around sounding like Alvin and the Chipmunks. Yeah, that's what family is all about.
More T-Giving 2009 pix here.

Oh! It's vintage photo Friday! Well, you'll just have to refer to last week's VPF for our family Thanksgiving in 1956. We've add quite a few people to our family in the past 53 years!

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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Day of Thanks

One knitted, one crocheted red scarf

On this day of Thanksgiving I wanted to let you all know that the Orphans Foundation of America needs MORE RED SCARVES! I completed two red scarves to donate to this worthy cause. From the website: In 2005, OFA launched a unique initiative to warm the hearts (and necks) of college-bound foster youth. We began taking donations of handmade red scarves to put into our Valentine's Day Care Packages.
Well, the OFA is short for this year's batch o' scarves! I know what I'm doing today....making another red scarf!! The deadline is December 15th. You can mail your scarves here:
Orphan Foundation of America
The Red Scarf Project
21351 Gentry Drive
Sterling, VA 20166

There are other ways to donate to the OFA if you do not knit or crochet. Check out the website AGAIN!
Happy Thanksgiving to all of my family and friends. Have a wonderful day....try to help someone not as fortunate as we are.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Quickie Cooking you have to prepare a last-minute Thanksgiving feast for just a few people? Or, like us, do you eat Thanksgiving out and long for leftovers? All 30 of my family members will be meeting up at the Del Rey Yacht Club for our annual feast. By Friday or Saturday, Larry and I will be longing for another round of turkey and stuffing.
Here are a few of my hints and tips for an easy turkey-fest for just 2 people.
I'll run over to Von's AFTER T-Giving and pick up some turkey parts. We like the breast and drumsticks. Don't laugh, but Stove-Top stuffing is really delicious. If you want to add diced vegies, go ahead..get fancy. I have this divine cranberry jello recipe that I made last year. I also really love Ocean Spray cranberry sauce from the can...yum. My vegie fave to go with turkey is creamed spinach. This is really easy to make. Just take a package of frozen spinach, drain it well, mix it with a 1/2 can of cream of mushroom soup, heat and serve. You can add diced mushrooms if you'd like. Candied yams...another recipe from Grandma.
Grandma Freda thought that canned food was the BEST invention! She was correct. Open up a can of yams, pour them into a baking dish, top with a bit of butter, brown sugar and some tiny marshmallows. Bake for about 30 minutes.
For dessert, I like pumpkin ice-cream. You can usually find it this time of year at most supermarkets. I like to melt down a bit of the ice-cream and pour it into a graham cracker pie crust (you can buy prepared ones), re-freeze the pie and serve it later with whipped cream. Of course, the Perky Turkey cookies are really fantastic too!
There you have it....easy T-giving dinner for a small group or even for one person!! Enjoy your leftovers!

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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Reunion Committee

Beverly Hills High School

I'm coming up on a BIG high school reunion next year. I'm on the reunion committee. It has been fun getting together with old friends, remembering our youth. Last night was our second meeting. The meetings are like organized chaos. After we've gossiped a bit and settled down, we start discussing all of the tasks to accomplish in order to put on a great reunion party. It's a ton of work! Of course, most of the discussions end up in side-discussions which end up in chaos again. I was exhausted last night after our meeting!

Our school mascot is "Joe Norman"
The architecture of BHHS is likened to Normandy, France
painting by Gary Priester

Since I sit at my computer all day, I volunteered to try and find our old friends. This is not as difficult as it was for past reunions. We have the internet now! Once I find someone's e-mail address or locate them on Facebook, I e-mail them and tell them all about our upcoming reunion and direct them to our alumni website. Many of our classmates live in Europe, China and other faraway places. Most, however still live in California. A surprising number live right here in the Los Angeles area!

BHHS Reunion Committee - October 2009

We had a class of 538 graduates. We're hoping for at least 200 to show up at next year's reunion. Have you attended your high school class reunion? How was it? What special entertainment or activities did your party have? Inquiring minds need to know. We NEED hints and tips!

BHHS Reunion Committee - November 2009
we look pretty good for a group of old people!

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Monday, November 23, 2009

"Fork" in the Road

Mary Jo, the Knitter/Consumer
A few weeks ago I met up with Mary Jo for lunch in South Pasadena. I wanted to see her before she left on her trip to Turkey. M.J. has been keeping us posted thru e-mails, her blog and her flickr account about her journey. It sounds like she's having a fantastic time.
We met at Abuelita's knit and needlepoint shop on Mission Avenue. Our friend, Regina was teaching a knit clas while we browsed thru the yarns, magazines and books. After chit-chatting with Regina for a bit, we wandered down the block to Buster's Coffee and Ice Cream Shop for lunch. Mary Jo told me that Buster's carries Fosselman's ice cream. Fosselman's in Alahambra is famous. One day, I'll get over there, but I was glad I could try their ice-cream at Buster's. We split a yummy sandwich and each had a scoop of ice-cream. Delish!
Fosselman's Mint Chip & Chocolate Ice Cream
A couple days before going to South Pasadena, I'd heard about this fork sculpture on a traffic island in South Pasadena. The story of the fork is here. We drove up Pasadena Avenue and just after Glenarm at St. John Avenue, there's a fork in the road, literally! I hope Pasadena keeps the fork. I love it!
Fork in the Road, Pasadena
What's your favorite bit of city sculpture?

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Friday, November 20, 2009

Vintage Photo Friday

This is the Thanksgiving edition of Vintage Photo Friday!
At the head of the table, Grandpa Sam, Aunt Mae (standing), Grandma Freda, Cousin Marilyn, Cousin Janet, Uncle Bob, Aunt Celia, Mom (closest to the camera), Me, Cousin Carolyn
Every year since I was a tiny girl, my Aunt Mae and Uncle Marvin have hosted our family Thanksgiving. Aunt Mae is my Mother's older sister. Here we are in 1956 at Mae's and Marv's duplex on Spalding Drive in Beverly Hills.
After Dinner!
L-R: My brother, Ken, Dad, Grandpa, Uncle Bob
Our family has grown substantially over the years. We no longer fit into a normal-sized dining room. This year, 30 of us will be celebrating at the Del Rey Yacht Club. I do miss the home-cooked meal and leftovers. We always had deli-style appetizers before the traditional meal. There was chopped liver, herring, the obligatory relish tray with onion dip and more. The actual main meal was very traditional: Turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes with marshmallows on top, green beans, cranberry sauce. We always had pumpkin pie and mince-meat pie with whipped cream for dessert. Yum!
What special family dishes do you serve at Thanksgiving time?

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Thursday, November 19, 2009


There's toooooo much to do this weekend. I'm still in cleaning and clearing mode at home, so I don't know how many activities we'll actually attend! Maybe you can squeeze in a few hours for the following:
The Great Los Angeles Walk is held on the Saturday before Thanksgiving. My friend and fellow blogger, Mike Schneider from Franklin Avenue has been organizing this event for the past few years. I really like his route this year....I hope to catch up with the walkers at some point, near my neighborhood to cheer them on!
Bob Baker's Marionettes Holiday Spectacular shows are on the schedule right now. Even if you think you're too old to see a puppet show, go anyway. The shows are charming!
The annual Beverly Hills Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony will be held Saturday at 7pm. BH is my hometown. I've never been to a tree lighting ceremony before. Our big excitement when I was a kid was when we saw the Santa in his sleigh with reindeer being strung up across Wilshire Blvd. at Beverly Drive!
Downtown on Ice starts this weekend. If you're interested in seeing bright sunshine melt the ice rink in the middle of Pershing Square, come on down! There are many shopping and restaurant opportunities in the area.
There's a Neon Cruise offered this Saturday at the Museum of Neon Art, downtown. The cruise is in one of those British double-decker buses. It's a great way to see the lit sights of our beautiful City!

"Smudge Pot" panorama by Josh Agle

Our buddy, artist SHAG is having an opening at the Corey Helford Gallery. The title of the show is "Autumn's Come Undone."

There's a Oaxacan Bazaar at the Autry National Center for the American West, near Griffith Park. It's always fun going to the Autry. You can sneak a peak at the L.A. Zoo, across the way too.
Of course, you could forego doing any of the above and ready your house for the great Thanksgiving feast next week!

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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Quick Gift - Headband!

Headband seen @ Portofino Tanning Salon, Beverly Hills - $85

My co-worker, Jessica came to work last week with a photo of a headband she'd seen in the boutique at Portofino Tanning Salon in Beverly Hills. The headband was priced at $85!!!
I took this as a personal challenge! I could knit and crochet that headband in less than an evening for a fraction of the cost, including labor!!! It took me about 2 hours, total to
knit the band, sew it together, crochet the flower and sew it with a button to the headband. The yarn was scrap acrylic, hangin' around the house.
Ellen's Copy of Portofino Headband

I'm a major headband devotee. I've made many for myself over the years, usually with lots of crocheted flowers on top to match certain outfits. These headbands give me a colorful, Latin/Frida-esque look which I really like.
Mardi Gras Headband

Over the summer, we were on the Santa Monica Pier for a concert. I spied this granny-type headband made from sock yarn. I've been meaning to give this style a
try too.
I'm thinking these little headbands would make great stocking stuffers for the goils! What are you knitting and/or crocheting for holiday gifts this year?


Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Just in case you haven't figured this out, I'm a big fan of Noro yarn. The color combinations that Mr. Noro comes up with just blow my mind. I also really like the long color runs vs. variegated color in most Noro yarns.
I have crocheted countless shawls using Noro yarns. I found a bit of leftover Noro Silk Garden sock yarn in my stash and decided to whip up a little scarf. I was thinking of giving this as a holiday gift, but I like it too much. Yet another orangey, reddish scarf added to my collection!


Monday, November 16, 2009

The Gold Line

Empty Red Line
On Sunday, Larry and I hopped on the Red Line Metro near LACC and zoomed down to Union Station. Sunday was the opening of the Gold Line extension to East L.A. If only we'd started earlier in the day. The Red Line was empty, but as soon as we arrived downtown (around 1pm), we saw and heard the crowds and crowds of people waiting in line to catch a free ride on the new Gold Line.

A Long, Long Wait to Get on the Gold Line Train
Metro Employees, Maintaining Order?
Larry and I thought it might be an excellent idea to transport ourselves up the block from Union Station to Philippe's for a nice, French-dipped beef sandwich, where we proceeded to wait in yet another long line for our lunch.

Waiting for Sandwiches @ Philippe's

It was totally worth the wait!

We will re-schedule our ride on the Gold Line train at some future date for our trip to East-Los.

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Friday, November 13, 2009

Vintage Photo Friday

75 years and still a wonderful place to visit. Yes, that's our favorite, neighborhood hang, the Original Farmers Market. "Meet Me At 3rd and Fairfax" is the slogan that we keep saying over and over again. We call the Farmers Market the VORTEX of Los Angeles, because eventually, everyone gets sucked into the place!
Below are a few vintage postcards from the Market's past.Before The Grove shopping center was built on the land where the Farmers Market outer buildings existed, there was an entire north side of stores and even little shops in the middle of the parking lot. Above is the famous Basket Shop.

I'm at the Market almost every Thursday night with my West Hollywood Stitch 'n Bitch Group. We meet in the upstairs dining area, above Kip's Toyland from 7-9pm. This gives us an opportunity to visit, knit and eat dinner! I've become addicted to some of the treasures found at the Market, like Little John's perfect honeycomb candy, Magee's yummy, fresh almond butter and Bob's doughnuts. No one said everything was healthy at the Market, but there are also some wonderful fruit and vegetable stands. You can read more about the history of the Farmers Market here.
More VPF.
Have a great weekend! Maybe I'll see you at the Original Farmers Market tomorrow? I'll be in the upstairs dining area from 10am to noon with my knitster/crochet friends! Join us!

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Hiren's BootCD
hard drive recovery