Archive for the ‘Community’ Category

Soup Swap

November 23, 2011

I had read about soup swaps in a past issue of Edible Seattle, and couldn’t wait to round up half a dozen of my soup-loving friends.  Our first swap was this last Sunday.  Everyone brought six – one quart containers of a favorite homemade soup, and we left with six future dinners to store in our freezers for the busy, winter nights ahead.  In between, we had pumpkin hot toddies and cake, shared more info about the soups we made, and enjoyed each other’s company.

Our haul of soups included:

  • halibut cheese chowder with poppyseed parmesan croutons
  • chicken and black bean enchilada
  • split pea with cheesey crostinis
  • carrot and ginger
  • corn, wild rice and sausage
  • coconut red lentil
  • Albondigas (Mexican meatballs)

We are already looking forward to our second swap in January.  My Thanksgiving started early with this wonderful celebration of sharing food and friendship.  Hope your Thanksgiving is wonderful as well!



August 17, 2011

Here’s a snapshot of our most recent neighborhood shindig.  Once a month we have a potluck dinner in the middle of our cul de sac.  We all moved here within a few months of each other, and instantly bonded into a community of neighbors.  And we discovered right away that we like each other’s cooking, as well as company!

I volunteered to do the dessert for our last feast.  I made this Pavlova (it’s a meringue that you bake until it’s chewy instead of crisp), layered with homemade lemon/lime curd, whipped cream and berries.  There were no leftovers.

Free Piano

June 16, 2011

Our antique piano needs a new home.  It is the most sentimental thing I’ve had to part with, as it came over on the boat with my family in the early 1900’s.  I inherited it when I was 16 years old, and have moved it to each of the  three houses Raoul and I have lived in.  There is no room for it in the fourth (and last).  We don’t play, and our sons have no need and/or room for it.

The piano is free. 

It needs a major tune-up, and is really heavy.  We need it picked up (from Mill Creek) by June 28.  Sooner is better.

If you are interested, please leave a comment on my blog.  If there is more than one taker, I’ll put the names in a bowl and pick.  Thanks!

A Good Library Morning

June 13, 2011

I am continually putting holds on books through our wonderful King County Library system.  Two gems were waiting for me today.  And the morning bonus was finding this tree, outside the front entrance, transformed into a whimsical piece of art.

The two gems I get to borrow are:

I never tire of borrowing books from the library – four whole weeks to soak up all the good ideas and visual stimulation.  (Every once in a while, after test-driving a book, I will decide to buy it.)  But usually I can let the book go, without adding another book to our stash.

Petite Retreat Spring Boutique

May 4, 2011

Here’s something really fun to add to your weekend calendar (besides visiting our Mill Creek Garage Sale bright and early on Saturday, the 7th at 7:30 a.m.)  I’m sure you can fit both things in!

This is the debut of Deb and Bob Kennedy’s latest creation, the Petite Retreat Boutique.  You’ll find Retreat original furnishings and accessories, as well as a selection of handmade, vintage and antique wares from other wonderful vintage industry vendors.  For more information, please visit this link.

The Curious Nest & Friday Fun

April 25, 2011

I hope you all had a grand Easter weekend.  I sure did.  The fun started on Friday with a play date with friend Caroline.  We decided to visit The Curious Nest, a gem of a shop located just north of Univesity Village in Seattle.

Here’s owner Andrea working on some of her enchanting jewelry while tending shop, and being so warm and welcoming to all of her customers.  Her handsome French husband, Laurent, was in France buying more French antiques!

Besides French antiques, The Curious Nest has a treasure trove of vintage found objects and local art.

An incredible collection of antique French mourning art.  The largest portrait has been named Charlotte.

My favorite pieces are Andrea’s heavenly jewelry creations.  This necklace just makes me swoon!

Caroline and I forced ourselves to say goodbye, and left with a few new souvenirs.  It was on to U Village for lunch and some chatting.  And literally – window shopping/ogling.

Anthropologie’s displays are always fetching.

A close-up and window shot of these great garlands of cork.  I’m feeling more love and less fear with my camera.  I’ll save the pictures of Ravenna Garden’s colorfun/colorful displays for tomorrow.

Bartering Is the Best Bargain

March 24, 2011

For a bargain lover like me, bartering is the best.  It’s a win/win for everyone.  My friend Dawn admired a lovely vintage sofa we no longer needed.  Dawn is a talented landscaper with an abundance of plants she has acquired from various jobs.  I would love more plants for our new garden.  So here is our sofa loaded up in Dawn’s truck on its way to live with her.  Next week I’ll be loading up my car with free plants from Dawn’s house.  And you might remember how much plant material my trusty Subaru can hold!

Another barter I’m enjoying is with my friend Julie.  She suggested that I could be her gardening coach, and in return, she would be my photography coach.  We recently spent a fun morning at a nursery finding some interesting yet low maintenance and drought tolerant plants for her garden.  In this photo, I’ve brought a surplus of a lovely grass I have, carex ‘Ice Dancer’, and showed Julie how to divide it up with one of my favorite gardening tools, the Hori Hori.  Regular hands work well too.  Julie is a natural when it comes to propagation.   

Next up was my first photography lesson, and I got my camera off of the automatic setting!  I am really encouraged to start taking better pictures.  Stay tuned for my DIY photo studio (aka the guest bedroom) reveal.

Charm Swap Fun

March 18, 2011

Twice a year, I host a very fun charm swap for 25 or so friends.  We’ve been enjoying this special tradition since 2007.  Everyone brings 25 hand-crafted charms to trade with everyone else.  The presentations are as terrific as the charms.

After we all select our new beauties, we hear how each charm was created, and share all sorts of jewelry-making hot tips.  Usually the jewelry you wear to this swap gets passed around for show and tell as well.  There’s food and friendship galore.  And when its all over, you have the best pile of new jewelry jewels!


March 14, 2011

I am so grateful for all the positive and joyful people in my life.  Here’s a great shot of a special friend, Christie – my playmate and helper extraordinaire for last month’s Ruffles and Rust show.  And a special thank you to Amber of Tres Birds Photography for this happy pic.