Warming An Old Lodge

Charlie and I had to make a quick overnight trip to upstate New York.

The library is a cozy room with a large fireplace.

We stayed in a large private lodge with fabulous fireplaces.

A huge stash of logs is kept on the left of the fireplace,

The logs are about 4 feet long.

The dining room seats 22.

There were roaring fires in all the fireplaces except the dining room.

The fireplace in the entrance hall has been converted to a woodstove.

The main hall has a roaring wood stove.

Do you like a wood fire, gas fire, no fire?


ABC’s of Me

Here’s my A to Z list of things I like and don’t, including some personal insights.

  1. Age: Old enough to know better
  2. Bed size: King

    Love a king-sized bed.
  3. Chore you hate: Cleaning bathroom
  4. Dogs: No animals yet but if I had one it would be a dog, actually a long-haired dachshund
  5. Essential start to your day: doppio cappuccino

  6. Favorite color: Blue
  7. Gold or silver: Silver (the color, not the metal)
  8. Height: 5’ 5”
  9. Instruments: Alas, no longer. Once upon a time cello, guitar, banjo, piano and bells

    Still my favorite instrument.
  10. Job title: Executive Administrator
  11. Kids: 1
  12. Live: Maryland
  13. Mom’s name: Betty June

    left to right: me, grandmother, mother.
  14. Nicknames: Jo Jo, Babe
  15. Overnight hospital stays: Surgery
  16. Pet peeve: The phrase “I feel badly.” It’s grammatically incorrect.
  17. Quote from a movie: “Do or do not, there is no try.” Yoda

    Jedi Master
  18. Right or left handed: Left. That’s right, I’m cool.
  19. Siblings: 1 sister
  20. Time you wake up: around 5:15 a.m.
  21. Underwear: Jockey or Victoria’s Secret

    A load of new lingerie
  22. Vegetables you dislike: Coconut, is that a veggie?
  23. What makes you run late: Charlie is my only hold-up.
  24. X-Rays you’ve had: Left and right knee, left and right shoulder
  25. Yummy food you make: Baked mac and cheese
  26. Zoo- favorite animal: Don’t like animals in the zoo.

What’s on your list?

Musical Gifts

My sister is a wonderful gift-giver.  She always seems to give the perfect thing.

The tacky little lamp was our only music light over the piano and the bench cushion was not very attractive.

We have a piano between the dining room and the living room that can be seen from almost every room on the first floor.

Charlie received this piano bench cushion in 2016 for Christmas.

In 2016 my sister gave Charlie a tapestry cushion for his piano bench. It was a huge improvement and he really appreciated it.

19-inch piano map illuminates at least two music sheets.

This year she sent a beautiful piano lamp. (We had been using a lamp from WalMart that I had spray painted.)

Sometimes the lamp might want to be dimmed.

Her research had led her to a dimmable model.  When the lamp arrived it worked but wouldn’t dim.

The lamp worked but wouldn’t dim.

Since the dimmer was an extra little box with a dial that fit between the power cord and the lamp base, we were hoping that replacing it would fix the issue.

The new piano lamp is sleek, functional, and dimmable.

The Cocoweb company replaced the dimmer for free and now it works. Tra la.

Do you have dimming lights?

My Style Profile

I took a quiz about my style and here are the results.

This survey really describes my style.

I am a traditionalist at heart with an eye towards more eclectic looks.

I have furniture including two Bergère chairs from the 1950s that have been passed down in my family.

I like classic looks and coordinated pieces in my home but like to add some energy and personality with a few more eclectic pieces. I may like a more antique look or gilded accents or just tailored lines, but I prefer a look that is mostly uniform and balanced.

I .  .  .

  • want my home to be stylish and that is a reflection of me and my overall tastes.
  • like to include pieces with a classic look such as antiques or items with a sense of history to them.

    The kitchen island was made from my mother’s antique breakfront.
  • want my home to be comfortable and inviting and that is a reflection of me and my lifestyle.
  • want my home to have a bright, cheerful look.
  • I love the brightness of the conservatory.
  • see my home as an expression of my personal style.
  • like classic modern pieces.

    I like the cleans lines of a glass coffee table.
  • like ethnic accents and a “worldly” look.
  • like your space to look somewhat dramatic.
  • like cool colors.

    The master bedroom is the coolest of blues.
  • like bright pops of color or colorful accents.

    I like bright pops of color in the usually cool rooms.
  • like to use some traditional gilded or wood accents in my  home to give it a sense of timelessness.
  • like the look of natural materials in my home.

    Rattan bench adds a casual touch to the more conservative furniture.

This is definitely my style.

What’s yours?

Galette des Rois

After looking at a few here is the recipe I chose to make a Galette des Rois, Kings’ Cake.

Galette des Rois

Sug and I worked together to make 2 Kings’ Cakes.

Sug rolled out puff pastry that I bought frozen.

We used frozen puff pastry and had to roll it out just a little to make it large enough to cut a round using a large frying pan lid as a pattern.

Chopped orange peel.

In addition to almond flour, butter, eggs, and sugar the seasoning included almond extract, vanilla extract (instead of the recipe’s suggestion of rum) and orange zest.

The filling is fluffy and holds its shape.

Filling is put on the bottom round with a margin which is them brushed with water so the top and bottom pastries will stick together.

The top pastry is carefully fit over the filling.

We put the cakes together with the filling inside and refrigerated them overnight so we could serve them warm the next day at our party. I cut a design into the unbaked dough with a sharp knife.

Both Sug and I tried our hands at crimping the edges as described in the recipe.  Nothing leaked out.

Just before baking I glazed the pastry with egg yolk/milk carefully avoiding the edges so they would puff up.

The top is glazed with an egg yolk and mixture.

This recipe is subtly delicious.  I could eat it every day with coffee if I had to.  Delicious.  Like an almond croissant in Paris.

A seriously elegant recipe.

We made 2 galettes and  only have a few pieces remaining. I’ll make this again.

Do you have a favorite pastry? Do you buy it or make it?

Forcing Quince

Flowering quince shrub in spring.

Last week I brought in a few quince branches from our large bush in the yard.

Pink blooming quince.

When this bush blooms in spring the flowers are pink.

Branches from the same bush are blooming white this winter.

The flowers that bloomed inside this week were white.

White flowers are actually my favorite.

Flowering quince are a nice reminder of spring on frigid winter days.

What is your reminder of warmer weather?

Number 1 on my 101 in 1001

When I was a teenager I had a long-haired dachshund named Princess.  As a young married I had a miniature long-haired dachshund name Max.

Princess looked a lot like this beauty.

I have been talking about getting a dog for awhile now so I finally contacted a breeder and put my name on a waiting list for a red-haired miniature long-haired dachshund expected to be born early in February.  I’ll take either a boy or a girl.

My favorite breed: long-haired dachshund.

I hope to get one of a litter whose mother looks a lot like my former dogs.  The take home date will be early in April.

Do you like big or little dogs?