Monday, February 27, 2012

The Perfect Day

It's cloudy and rainy today.
A very light rain.
The perfect day for a cup of tea and reading!

Ladies Tea

I have green tea in my Blue Willow teacup by Churchill.
I think my mother started this Blue Willow set when it was sold in the grocery store.
Remember those days?
Remember the days when you bought laundry detergent to get the glass bowl inside?
Or the tea towel?
Aging myself!!!

Ladies Tea

I have lots of books to pick from, 
but I decided to start my reading with the March 2012 Southern Living Magazine,
especially when I saw this article:
"The New Ladies Lunch":
with the pretty rose teacup.

"Inspired by the South's most beloved department store restaurants, we developed a classic lunch-with-the-girls menu, complete with tea sandwiches, chicken salad, and hold on to your napkin, honey -- 
the dessert cart."

What memories this article brought to mind!
It mentions the dining room of Dallas' flagship Neiman Marcus, 
that was built in the 1940's. I remember my grandmother and my aunt
taking me to lunch there. We had to dress to go downtown ... hat, gloves, the whole works.
I had the pimento cheese sandwich.
I can almost taste it! 

The article includes the recipe for Neiman Marcus Cheddar Cheese Biscuits
and I'm sharing it with you today.

Makes: about 2 1/2 dozen
Hands-on Time: 20 min
Total Time: 1 hr, 40 min.

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 Tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 cup vegetable shortening
1 cup (4 oz) freshly shredded sharp Cheddar-cheese
1 cup buttermilk
Parchment paper

1. Whisk together first 3 ingredients in a large bowl. Cut in shortening with a pastry blender until mixture resembles small peas and dough is crumbly: stir in cheese. Add buttermilk, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened.

2. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead 3 to 4 times. Place dough in a bowl; cover and chill 1 hour.

3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Pat or roll dough to i-inch thickness, cut with a 1 1/2 inch round cutter and place on parchment paper lined baking sheets.

4. Bake at 350 for 20 to 22 minutes or until golden brown.

Note: Unbaked biscuits may be frozen up to 1 month. Bake frozen biscuits as directed for 26 to 28 minutes or until golden brown.

This article also includes recipes for Tomato-Basil Bisque, Tarragon Chicken Salad, Cranberry-Strawberry Salad; Tea Sandwiches like Ham Salad, Curried Shrimp, Cucumber and Strawberry,
Goat Cheese and Pecan, Orange and Cranberry, Egg Salad.
There's a recipe for Caramelized Onion Quiche and last,
the dessert cart that includes:
Banana Pudding Cheesecake, Lemon-Orange Chiffon Cake, Lemon-Orange Buttercream Frosting, Vanilla-Buttermilk Tarts, Chocolate-Espresso Pots De Creme.
And, did I mention the photos are lovely?!!!
Well done Southern Living!

Wishing YOU well, a JOY filled week and a Wonderful cup of tea!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Blooming in Musashi's Garden!

According to the calendar it isn't Spring yet.
Tell that to my roses!

Double Delight Rose

They have really enjoyed the rain and the cool one day and warm the next day weather!

Double Delight Rose Mosaic

This is the hybrid tea rose Double Delight.

Double Delight Rose Mosaic

From bud to full bloom.

Double Delight Rose Mosaic

At full bloom the flower is a good 5 inches across.

Double Delight Rose

  "Lemon ice dipped in strawberry sauce" is one of the ways it has been described.
 It also has a wonderful scent.

Thank you to Mary for being our hostess for Mosaic Monday.

Wishing you WELL and a JOY filled week!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

The Great White

The Great Egret (Ardea alba), 
also known as Great White Egret, 
Common Egret, or Great White Heron.
 Photographed in the Japanese Garden, Hermann Park, Houston.

The Great White Egret

Great White Egret

Great White Egret

Great White Egret

I'm joining Misty for Camera Critters.

Wishing you WELL, JOY and a CRITTER filled weekend!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Some Joy

Red, Red Robin

1. While walking to my Village for lunch, I saw my first robin of the season. I stopped for a while and let him sing to me for a few minutes. Unfortunately, I didn't have my camera with me.

2. The college baseball season has started and my Owls are 4 - 0. It is so nice to see all my baseball buddies and to get back into the excitement of watching these talented and intelligent young men play baseball. 

3. I'm fortunate that people ask how I'm doing and I say "okay, thank you for asking". I'm sure many are nervous. They wonder what they should say to me. They wonder what I will reply to their question. I like the ones who say "I miss him, too". I take joy in knowing how many lives he touched.


4. I'm also learning that's it's okay to not be okay. I'm still standing and that's what's important. Thank you Tiny Buddha for your words of wisdom.

5. I love the sound of Cassie purring while she perches on my  chest and shoulder. She is so soft and loves being petted. She is definitely a Momma's girl.

For those looking for a postcard,
here's one that celebrates the coming of Spring.

Thank you Beth for hosting Postcard Friendship Friday!

Tulip Postcard

From the back of the postcard: 
"Fields of blooming tulips are the product of hundreds of years of accumulated wisdom, business savvy, and plain hard work.
Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm, Woodburn, Oregon"
The photograph was taken by Jon Gnass/Gnass Photo Images

Visiting the Pacific Northwest and some of the tulip farms is on my list!

Wishing you Well and a JOY filled weekend.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Valentine's Gift

Aren't these teacups wonderful?

Heart Teacups

They were a Valentine's Day gift from a dear friend.

Heart Teacup

We were shopping at Tuesday Morning when we found them.
I "clasped my hands with delight"!

Heart Teacups

They came in a wonderful storage box decorated with the heart and crown...
a cappuccino cup set called Royal Heart ...
large cups that will be perfect for tea.

**"Descending from his perch, he fell to unpacking it with great neatness and dispatch, while Rose watched him, wondering what was going to happen. Presently, out from the wrappings came a teapot, which caused her to clasp her hands with delight, for it was made in the likeness of a plump little Chinaman ... Two pretty cups with covers, and a scarlet tray, completed the set, and made one long to have a "dish of tea" even in Chinese style, without cream or sugar."
~Louisa M. Alcott, Eight Cousins

"Let us gather for a greeting
With our teacups filled with tea
And I'll tell you how important
Your friendship is to me."
~ Alda Ellis, Hats Off To Tea

"If man has no tea in him, he is incapable of understanding truth and beauty."
~ Japanese Proverb

Wishing YOU well, a JOY filled week and a Wonderful cup of tea!

** Quotes from 365 things Every Tea Lover Should Know

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Yes, They Do Whistle!

One of the joys of walking in Hermann Park is watching the ducks,
especially my favorites, the Black Bellied Whistling Ducks.

Whistling Ducks

They are so un-ducklike!

Whistling Duck Mosaic

They have long legs.

Whistling Duck Mosaic

And, they whistle.
They are so much fun to listen to ... especially when they are eating.

Whistling Duck Mosaic

They make me smile and it's hard to beat a smile!

Whistling Ducks

This fella took off just as I clicked.

I'm joining Misty for Camera Critters

And Mary for Mosaic Monday.

Wishing YOU WELL and JOY!

Friday, February 17, 2012

A Little Joy

What did you do this week that brought you joy?
Made you smile?
Brought you Peace?
Something you were grateful for?

Here are a few of my favorites from the last week:

Raindrops on Plumeria

1. It's been raining! YeeHaw! We are in a horrible drought and we've had rain almost everyday for several weeks now. Mostly a nice light rain. Not a lot, but enough to make my garden happy.


2. Biscuits and grits. A Southern girl can not live by Healthy Food alone! I had breakfast one morning with a dear friend at the Avalon Diner and I had a biscuit and grits. I can't tell you how good they tasted. 
Next time, I'm going to have two biscuits and gravy with grits!!!!!



3. The beautiful roses my DSD (dear step-daughter) sent me for Valentine's Day. It was a difficult week for both of us. We both miss her Dad so very much.


Tea House

4. Finding Peace  walking in one of my favorite places, the Japanese Garden in Hermann Park.

I'm joining Liv Lane for The Little Bliss List Link Party.

For those of you who might be looking for a postcard, I hope this one makes you smile!

Thank you Beth for hosting Postcard Friendship Friday!

Cat Postcard

Wishing YOU well and a FUN filled weekend!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine's Day Tea

Welcome to Valentine's Tea!
I love Emma Bridgewater and this year I added the heart mug
and the heart teapot ... perfect for a little tea love on Valentine's Day!

Mosaic Valentine's Day Tea

You might recognize the pretty little heart vase from last year.
My DSD (dear step-daughter) makes sure that I have roses each year
and each year, when I get the call from the florist, 
I walk into my Village and get the vase refilled. 

Valentine's Day Tea Mosaic

Believe it or not, I'm not fond of boxed chocolates
but I love the boxes! 
This heart box I filled with Dove hearts (cherry and dark chocolate).
A book, a cup of tea, a piece of chocolate, a few roses ...

Hearts and Flowers

Wishing you WELL, 
a JOY filled week,
 a wonderful cup of TEA
 and a Happy Valentine's Day! 

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Blooming in Musashi's Garden!

It's been raining.
We are still in a drought, but at least Mother Earth is wet
and my garden is happy!

Sun Flare Rose Mosaic

I zipped out into Musashi's Garden before the last rain.

Sun Fare Rose Mosaic

I wanted to make sure I photographed Sun Flare before the rain
messed with the blooms!

Sun Flare Rose Mosaic

Sun Flare is a floribunda rose, small and bushy.
Perfect in a container and it really likes Musashi's Garden.
Unfortunately, it has little or no scent and I like my roses to SMELL! 

My thanks to Mary for hosting Mosaic Monday.

Wishing YOU Well and a JOY filled week!

One Year Ago

One Year Ago Today
The LOVE of my life,
My Knight in Shining Armor
Left this earthly home and traveled on to the stars.


We would have celebrated 31 years February 1.
I miss him.

The Little Prince

Friday, February 10, 2012

I've Got A Feeling

I've got a feeling that these are the last Kiss reproduction vintage postcards
I'll be sharing with you this year for Valentine's Day!!!

They are both from a Box of Kisses published by Chronicle Books.

I've Got A Feeling For You

"I've got a feeling for you."


"What's a peaceful country scene,
With lovely cherry trees,
Without a pair of lovers keen,
To kiss and coo and squeeze!"

Thank you to Beth for being our hostess for Postcard Friendship Friday.

Wishing YOU well, a JOY filled weekend, and a 
Happy Valentine's Day!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

My World: Wear Red Day

Red Heart Dresses

National wear red day was Feb 3, 2012. The American Heart Association wants to uncover the truth about heart disease. More women die of heart disease than the next three causes of death combined including all forms of cancer. The Red Heart Dresses were photographed when I walked to my Village to have breakfast.

Red Heart Dresses

Thank you to the Our World hosts.

Wishing YOU well and a JOY filled week.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

January At A Glance

Time to look back at January with a few of the images
I shared with you.

January 2012 At A Glance

My thanks to Mary for hosting Mosaic Monday.

Wishing YOU well, a JOY filled week
and I hope YOUR team wins the super bowl! 

Friday, February 3, 2012

More Kisses!

I'm still celebrating the coming of Valentine's Day
with reproduction vintage postcards from
A Box of Kisses published by Chronicle Books.

Never Like This

Both of these cards are good for a giggle.

Love at it's Height

Thank you to Beth for hosting Postcard Friendship Friday.

Wishing YOU well and JOY filled weekend!