there is so much going on in a lot of my favorite blogs and the fact that i still cannot comment is making me crazy.  what is up with this?  am i the only one experiencing this?

kirstin of the fabulous faux fucshia fame is losing sleep and writing seething emails to her government officials in australia because of the inhumane treatment of cattle being sold to indonesia.  you can read about it here on her blog and get seething mad too.  maybe one day all this madness can stop and we can treat all animals the way they should be treated, with love and care.  k.d. lang said it best..."why do we treat some animals like pets and others like dinner?"  why indeed.

tabitha at bourbon and pearls wants to know what we won't wear which i think is such a fabulous question.  i'd love to leave a comment on her blog but i'm unable to.  so i'll tell you here that i won't wear skimpy clothing or big clunky platform shoes.  i won't wear a lot of things that i used to love because my body is changing.  things that used to be here are now there and well it's just sad so i'm  embracing my tomboy self more than ever, with red lipstick of course. 

here's a picture of the front of the house that i took yesterday.  also, alex came over yesterday and told me it would be a damn travesty if i paint the house white.   a damn travesty.  out of the corner of my eye i saw larry smiling.



this has been the weirdest week.  i'm still unable to comment on most all blogs i read.  when i'm stressed, as i am over melinda, i usually clean or organize.  today i switched the drapes from my bedroom to the dining room/living room.  i'm not sure if i like it or not but it is different.  i also put the parsons chairs in the basement and pulled out these antique frenchy type chairs that i got at an estate sale a long time ago.  again, i don't know if they look right but it is different.  i'm thinking about eating some goat cheese this weekend because of a recipe i came across.  i'll let you know if i do.  last weekend i saw the movie bridesmaids and loved it and this weekend i will see hangover 2 and report back.  i mowed the lawn today with the push mower and squeezed about 20 thousand oranges into fresh juice.  that's all i've got.  

have a good one.


5 early warning signs of ovarian cancer

The most common signs include bloating, pelvic or abdominal pain, trouble eating or feeling full quickly, and urinary symptoms, such as the need to go urgently or frequently.  my friend melinda had all these symptoms in one weeks time.  she also had shortness of breath, which is what led her to urgent care. 

read more about this silent killer...here.

melinda had a complete hysterectomy yesterday and is doing well.  she will begin chemo in about 2 weeks.

also, blogger is not allowing me to make comments on anyone's blogs which is frustrating.

roses for melinda

yesterday i learned that my dear friend has ovarian cancer.  i'm saddened beyond words. 
 these roses are for her.



she loves ralph lauren

this morning i woke up and had 5 emails from friends and readers of this blog telling me that ralph will be on oprah today.  i already knew that but it touched me that you guys know how much i love ralph.  i threw together a few of my favorite ralph looks as a tribute to him.  i wish i was interviewing him at the double rl ranch today, i think we'd get along great.


making bread*

i need to do a whole post on this bread recipe because of the questions and emails i got.  and i realized while going over the original recipe in the ny times, that i have a couple of shortcuts that make this insanely good and easy bread even easier.

so here is the original recipe

no knead bread

and this is how i make it, i stick to the recipe but skip the wrapping the dough in a towel part.  i'm sure there is a reason to do this but it's messy and it comes out just fine w/o that step.
so in the evening i combine...

 2 c whole wheat flour and 1 cup white flour (or any combo i feel like that = 3 c)
 1/4 t yeast
1 1/2 t real salt - not kosher
1 5/8 c water

i mix this up in a big bowl and put a towel over it and forget about it.

the next morning, after 15 hours or so i punch it down a couple of times and fold it over itself 3 or 4 times cover it with the towel again and let it rest another 2 hours.

1/2 hr before i'm going to bake it i put my baking dish (i use a le creuset casserole) in a 450 degree oven to heat.

after 1/2 hour i plop the mixture in, cover it and bake for 1/2 hr and then remove the lid and decide if it needs more baking by looking at the color.  sometimes it's done and sometimes it needs a couple more minutes.

that's it.  over the weekend we priced homemade artisan breads and they were $4-5 a loaf.

depending on where you get your ingredients this bread costs between 20-50 cents a loaf. 
plus you know exactly what's in it and it is so GOOD.

*no animals were harmed making this bread


i'm starving - spicy asian slaw*

spicy asian slaw salad

i was sitting around the other day starving for a crunchy salad.  i went on-line and found 2 or 3 different recipes that sounded good and that i had the basic ingredients for.  i combined the recipes and came up with this and now i'm addicted to it.  it is deeeeelish and good enough to serve to company.

i'm really watching my budget now because i want my house painted white and i need that awning too.  so this is how it goes...

4 c shredded cabbage (i used half red and green)
1 c shredded carrot
2 T chopped cilantro
1/2 c peanuts
1/2 c dried cranberries


in a medium sized mixing bowl wisk...

3 T peanut butter
 3 T rice wine vinegar
2 T agave syrup
1 T sesame seed oil (i honestly think you could get away w/using vegetable oil)
1 T soy sauce
1/2 - 1 t red pepper flakes - optional
1/2 t ground ginger - optional

and how about some fresh baked bread to go with...

  ever since meg from minimalist woman told me about this easy recipe i have been making my own.  this bread is so easy and it is delicious.  there are only 4 ingredients - flour, 1/4 t yeast, water and salt.   and no kneading.  all you need is time and since i have way more time than money, it's perfect for me.  it costs less than 50 cents a loaf to make. 

*no animals were harmed making these dishes

alex bought me this 70's silk blouse for mothers day and i thought i'd share it with you.

have a purty weekend


fresh white - pve

for 3 years i have spent countless hours wondering what this cottage would look like painted white.  and when i say countless, i mean countless.  the debate in my head has driven me to countless headaches too.  i wrote a post about it here where tara dillard gave me excellent advice.
i love red, the cottage has been red for at least 45-50 years.  so everyone knows this house as the little red cottage in the park.  redlands thrives on history and does not like change.  but from the moment i laid eyes on this house, i wanted to paint it white. 
well they better prepare themselves because i won this gorgeous sketch from
and my mind is made up.  to see her vision of my cottage is a dream come true.


i love everything about it, the color, the zippy awning, the way the landscape stands out.
patricia sent me the sketch yesterday morning and i immediately made it my screensaver.  sorry jack.  i stared at it all day long.  it's funny because now i know exactly what colors to use inside.  it has such a great  ralph lauren look to it.  while larry is glad that jack is off my screen, he's worried about just who is going to do the painting, as in him.   

thank you so much patricia for helping bring a dream come true.

what do you think?


potato, mushroom, spinach enchiladas* and other stuff

this is a super easy enchilada recipe and i can slip mushrooms in and larry doesn't mind. 
here's how i make them...

i microwave a large potato and while it's cooking i saute sliced mushrooms with a bunch of spinach.  then i add the cooked, diced potatoes and season the mixture with chili powder, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.  then i add about a cup of green enchilada sauce and let it reduce a bit.

in a separate pan i quickly heat the corn tortillas in vegetable oil one at a time.  i pour some enchilada sauce in the bottom of a baking pan and put a dollop of the mixture into each tortilla and roll them up.  after they are all lined up in the baking pan i pour the rest of the green sauce over the top and pop them into the oven until they are crunchy and brown.  this is not an exact science.  you can substitute vegetables, beans or rice, whatever you have on hand will taste good with the green sauce and baked. 
i normally garnish the top with avocado slices or guacamole but i forgot to add it before i took the picture. 

a spinach and orange salad compliments it really well.

happy cinco de mayo!

*no animals were harmed making these enchiladas

larry took this photo of me saturday before a picnic.
i was inspired by this photo...

i wonder if ron galella took this?
i just watched the movie
 smash the camera
which is all about him and his relentless stalking of jackie and other celebrities.  you can love him or hate him but without him we wouldn't have many of the gorgeous photos of jackie that we all love.
the movie is available on netflix instant watch.
i thought it was fascinating.


in case you were wondering...

the roses are still doing their thang.


fresh ideas

last week larry decided to give up his car for a week. and so i did too. we have walked and biked everywhere. you see so much more when you are out of the car, houses and gardens i've never even noticed.  work is only a mile away for me and larry works out of our home but he is biking 14 miles to the gym and back each morning which i think is nuts but he thinks it's great. we start week 2 today.


jule lorusso and her husband matt will be donating over $2000 to the japan relief fund.  isn't that exciting?  thank you to everyone who participated in their incredibly kind offer.  she told me more readers of this blog ordered jewelry than any other.  you guys are so awesome. 


today i will be starting my third week of sofa to 5k running program.  i first heard about it from paula.  it's officially called couch to 5k but i prefer the term sofa.  read all about it here and join me, summer is coming you know.  how awesome would it be to say...yeah, i run 3 miles each morning.  and how good would that feel?  yesterday was the first day i saw any progress and now i'm so excited i can hardly sit still.


also, i've been reading the blog zero waste.  check it out here.  at first i thought this was something i would not be able to do, but i've reconsidered and am making every attempt to cut down on our waste.  instead of thinking recycle we are now first thinking refuse.  walking through the market with thoughts on packaging is an eye opener.  we are being less lazy about composting.  check out this list of 


i fell in love with this frosting method last week.  i found it on the lovely blog called yummy mummy.  you can frost an entire cake like this.  pop over and just take a look, marina's looks 100x better, such a fresh idea and so gorgeous and easy.  you'll never frost a cake any other way.  my frosting was not very stiff and i still love the way they came out. 

do you have any fresh ideas for living this spring?

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