Category — Linda
While riding our bikes home from Lisa’s Cinco de Mayo party a couple Sunday’s ago, we spotted a neighbor’s “trash” on the side of the road. Amy, Scott, Ronnie, Dave, and I made a u-turn on our snazzy wheels to check it out.
There was a big screen television, a satellite dish, four Adirondack chairs, a bunch of boxes and toys… and a rustic outdoor couch. We moved the TV to the street, piled onto the couch and snapped a photo of our intoxicated selves. What can I say… that tequila punch was really potent… and tasty!
Then we rode our bikes home and Scott and I went back with my car, because I needed that couch! Either Dave was too tipsy or more likely, too embarrassed, because he wanted nothing to do with my dumpster diving ways.
Note: Drinking and driving don’t mix… this house is in our gated community, no intersections or major streets were involved in the excursion… it is only two cul-de-sacs away.
As a point of reference, in the photo above, I am standing in my backyard looking across at Ronnie’s house. The “trash pile” was in the next cul-de-sac – just behind her house. The big trash pick-up was the next morning. Please forgive.
When we drove around the corner, we were aghast! There was another car there, picking up stuff. They better not lay their grubby hands on that couch of mine! Alas, all they wanted was two of the Adirondacks.
We loaded up my couch, I dropped Scott off at home, and then forced Dave to help me unload it. He begrudgingly obliged.
May 14, 2013 5 Comments
Wishing each and every one of you a joyous weekend!
And for those of you celebrating Mother’s Day, may it be wonderful. Hallmark holiday, or not… You deserve it.
I’ll be spending mine with my son and husband and missing my daughter, but knowing that I am in her heart.
I know this, because she always goes out of her way to make sure I know and feel it.
May 10, 2013 6 Comments
May 4, 1985 was our wedding day.
That’s a long time! I’ve been married more than half my life. Several more years married than years that I was not married. That’s weird!
I’m pregnant with Marissa in this 1987 photo. The start of our beautiful family.
Life is good.
May 4, 2013 8 Comments
That means it is once again time for some funnies.
Can you relate to any of these?
Which is your favorite?
My favorite, this week, is the last one.
April 26, 2013 3 Comments
It seems as though most of you really enjoyed the Friday Funnies that I posted a couple of weeks ago. In fact, some asked that I make it a regular feature. I’m not sure I can do that… but I do have more for today.
Sad, but oh so true!
YES!!! It does!
… and on their arms and hips too!
This one is posted for my sweet girl, Marissa! But, it’s more than OK – I love getting calls from her, no matter when or from wherever! <3
This happens to me waaaay too often!
March 29, 2013 4 Comments
Happy Birthday to two of my dearest friends. Two women whom I adore.
Their birthdays are only two years apart, but I won’t reveal who is older or their exact ages.
Let’s just say that one is a tiny bit more than decade younger than me and the other is just less than a decade behind me.
Yeah, they’re young and they are both gorgeous, inside and out!
You may not be able to see, but they are both in the image above. You can easily see that I am cooking with Tram Mai on the old Valley Dish. We are making Amy’s Famous Taco Soup. Because it is Amy’s recipe, I’d brought along a framed photo of Amy and her family… you can barely see it down in the lower right corner of the image. Can you see it?
Since then, Amy and Tram have been together at my house a couple of times, but unfortunately, I’d never gotten a photo of them together, so until I do, this will have to do!
Before our mutual friend, Lori, moved to Chicago, we used to celebrate Amy (on the right) and Lori’s (center) birthdays together.
Happy Birthday, Amy! I love you!
This fun photo was taken in August 2010 when Tram invited me to cook with her on stage at Phoenix Cooks. Good times!
Happy Birthday, Tram! I love you!
March 21, 2013 6 Comments
At the January Sweet Salvage sale I spotted something “fabulous” as I was standing in the check out line. It was something very similar to a thing I’ve been dreaming about for months now. I looked at the price, looked at all the stuff I already planned to purchase, and knew I could not have it all. I let the “fabulous thing” slip away.
(Hint #1 – the “fabulous thing” is in the photo above. I swiped this image from the Sweet Salvage blog. Can you guess what it is?)
For the rest of the month, I regretted not putting everything else I had in my hands down and getting the “fabulous thing” instead. But I held on to a glimmer of hope that “fabulous thing” would not be sold and would still be there when I returned for the February sale.
Kim and I walked into the door on the Friday morning of the February sale, and I headed straight for where it had been the last month. And…
IT was still there!
(Hint #2 – the “fabulous thing” is also in the February Sweet Salvage photo above – this image is also swiped from their blog. Do you spot it yet?)
I was so relieved! After being filled with regret all month long, it was still there, a sure sign that I was meant to have it! At least that’s the ‘sign’ I read.
(Hint #3 – I’ve been dreaming of this fabulous thing ever since I first learned that such a thing even existed. I had seen something very similar to it on the blog of the talented person I love to stalk. A year and a half ago, I read THIS post on Heather Bullard’s blog and have been coveting the item ever since.)
March 7, 2013 2 Comments
On March 4, 1933, at his inaugural speech, newly elected U.S. President, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, uttered the now famous words, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself!”
That was exactly 80 years and 1 day ago, today! This past week, that idea has proven to been very true for me.
For many months now I have been afraid of letting others in on a very difficult decision that I made.
I was afraid of letting people down.
I was fearful of peoples’ reaction.
I was afraid of possible backlash.
Turns out I was only afraid of fear – there was nothing to be fearful of after all!
On March 1st, I sent out an email to my entire mailing list and also posted it on the “Classes and Summer Camps” page over there on left side, at the top, of this page.
March 1, 2013
Dear Parents and Students,
After 18 years of teaching summer classes for kids, I have made a very difficult decision – it is time for me to retire.
I have gone back and forth with this since the end of classes last summer. This decision has not come easily. It is like losing a member of my family – letting it and all of you go is difficult. I know there will be disappointed parents and kids, and that is why my heart is heavy and what has made this so hard for me.
I have so enjoyed teaching your children these past 18 years. It has been my honor and my privilege to open my home kitchen to each and every one of them over the years. My own children grew up taking the classes and then eventually working for me and assisting my students in the kitchen. Your support, kindness and patronage have meant the world to me.
That support and interest is was what gave me the push I needed to start my own cooking blog over three years ago.
I will always treasure the memories made here at Les Petites Gourmettes and will continue teaching adult classes at Les Gourmettes in Phoenix. I’ll continue posting recipes, nearly daily, at LesPetitesGourmettes.com. I hope you’ll drop by and visit me there, and that the blog will continue to be a cooking resource for you for many years to come.
Best wishes and Godspeed,
Backlash? Not at all!
Love and kindness is what my students and their parents gave back to me. So much so, that I want to share their loving words with you and give them my eternal gratitude for being so kind and understanding. I’ve sprinkled this post with a generous amount of images from these last 18 years.
Additionally, for a very retro news video of our 3rd summer – go to the “In The News” page – over there on the top left. When you open the page, keep scrolling down until you get to a photo that is labeled “Old School”. Directly underneath that photo is a link that says Fox 10 News 1997… Check that out, it makes me smile. Such fond memories.
And now for those wonderful emails….
March 5, 2013 11 Comments
Before I share more party details, I want to wish my dear friend, Karen Mock a very Happy Birthday!
Karen was a bridesmaid in my wedding. At the time she was pregnant with her first child, Nick. Dave and I are Nick’s godparents … so yes, Karen and I have been friends for a loooong time and I love her to pieces. Happy Birthday, Karen! I look forward to celebrating with you on Friday! xoxo
On to the party ….
Peggy arrived a little early so she’d be there to greet her guests, and I was actually ready to greet her and the guests too. That doesn’t always happen. More often than not, I’m still scrambling and getting ready at the very last second before a party at our house begins. But not this time, and here is why -
I had gone to Sweet Salvage the day before the party with my friend and colleague, Kim Howard. (after all the party posts, I’ll share with you what I got that day – it is so cool!)
I was telling Kim about the party plans and she said, “Let me come help.” I resisted at first, because I’d already hired two servers and a bartender from Elite Events AZ. Kim insisted and I finally came to my senses and took her up on her generous offer. Kim and I work together at Les Gourmettes. When I teach my series of classes there, Kim works right beside me. We’re a great team and I knew that having her in the kitchen, finishing off the dishes, overseeing everything, and doing things exactly as I would do them – well I knew that I wouldn’t have to worry about a thing and I could really relax and enjoy my own party.
That is exactly what happened! Maybe I enjoyed it a wee bit too much, if you know what I mean! So, thank you Kim. Thank you Jana, Cami, and Jeanie from Elite Events. And thank you, to my adorable son, Connor, who was the lone man in the kitchen, there to help with whatever the ladies asked him to do!
Anne and I, giving Peggy her official birthday kiss.
Peggy with her darling parents, her brother, John, and her sister-in-law, Lorraine. Take note of Peggy’s pink crown and scepter. The Birthday Princess!
Anne and Dave at the appetizer buffet. The bar is in the background…
… thanks Anne for taking this picture of the bar, I can see your reflection in the window and I see myself in the kitchen. What am I doing in there?! I think I was cutting green onions for the mashed potatoes and talking to Kim about the recipes. This was prior to the guests arriving. Well, of course Anne was a guest too, but she was and is much more than that! She helped me so much in putting on this gala event. Love you girl! xoxo
Along with the full bar, we offered two signature cocktails…
The Pink Pear
1 1/2 ounces pear vodka
3 ounces mango nectar or pineapple juice
1 ounce cranberry juice
Lemon juice, for rim
Pink or gold sugar, for rim
Dip the rim of a clear “highball” glass in lemon juice, then dip into sugar. Fill glass with ice.
Gently layer the vodka, then the nectar, then the cranberry juice into the glass for an ombre cocktail.
Coarse pink salt
1 ounce tequila
1/2 ounce Grand Marnier
3/4 cup grapefruit juice
Grapefruit slice, for garnish
Dip the rim of a clear “rocks” glass in lemon juice, then dip into sugar. Fill the glass with ice. Pour tequila and Grand Marnier over ice.
Top with grapefruit juice and stir. Garnish with a slice of grapefruit.
Also on the bar, were bowls of the ever popular Ranch Oyster Crackers, also known as Crack Crackers. These are seriously addicting!
Another fun 50th birthday party touch was a little something else I found on eBay …
February 27, 2013 7 Comments
Before I continue to tell you about the party planning for Peggy’s 50th – I first have to say…
Happy Birthday, Peggy!
Today is her actual birthday.
One of the wonderful party ideas I found on Pinterest was to take a bunch of photos of the honoree and create a huge “50″ with them. I gathered photos of Peggy, scanned them onto my computer, edited each one into gray-scale, and printed them out.
Next, I taped sheets of newspaper to my marble fireplace and taped the photos to the newspaper.
I then carefully took down the numbers and placed them on a flat surface to trim the newspaper backing.
The “5″ was on the fragile side, so I reinforced the weak center area with a bit of cardboard on the backing.
This was all done about a week before the party, so into the garage staging area the numbers went to stay out of harm’s way until party time.
Underneath the photo collage you can see the linens I bought from THIS fabulous online site. It was so much more economical to purchase the linens rather then renting them.
I was able to buy two pink crinkle taffeta 117-inch round tablecloths, four pink crinkle taffeta 60×126-inch tablecloths, six gold organza runners, one embroidered chair slipcover, one fuchsia satin chair sash, 50 gold, pink, and fuchsia napkins, and one 90-inch gold organza overlay for only $107 – and that included the shipping! They all washed up perfectly too, no ironing needed. I could not have been happier with the linens.
Here is what the preliminary “mock table” looked like in my staging area.
February 26, 2013 9 Comments