Monday, November 30, 2009

Jackie's Jewels

Every once in awhile I will be channel surfing and I'll come across the Jacqueline Kennedy Collection show on QVC as I did last night. All the reproduction pieces are accompanied with fascinating stories of how she came to own the pieces. Many are from JFK who as it turns out designed many in her collection and would plan his gift giving months in advance.

This ring's story is especially poignant.

It is Kunzite and JFK had 20 diamonds set around the main stone. 10 for the Christmas' they had shared together and 10 more for the Christmas' yet to come. He designed the ring in Oct. of 1963 and had asked his secretary, Mrs. Johnson, to put it in the drawer of her desk. When the assassination occurred she didn't know what to do with it so she gave it to another staffer who was a close friend of both Jackie and JFK. He asked Jackie if she still wanted the gift. She said absolutely and although she vowed not to wear any jewelry for her year of mourning, she would put on this ring upon returning home as soon as she took off her gloves. The ring accompanied her to bed at night where she also wore it. Years later she would wear the ring still predominately on her left hand's ring finger along with her wedding band. Even when she married Onassis she wore her wedding band from JFK and was buried with it.

The gentleman who presents the jewelry shares a wealth of information about her life. All the pieces that are shown are accompanied by photos of her wearing the piece which is interesting to see how her style had evolved over time.

It really is a fascinating program for the tidbits alone.
The next is scheduled for Dec. 26th.
You can go to program's guide and sign up for a show reminder.

Sounds like the perfect holiday TV veg fest while heating up the leftovers.

Life Over The Last Week

3 big dinners two of which I hosted.

The Mad About Plaid Family Lowland Games Day After Thanksgiving Extravaganza
were a smashing success.
Why didn't I take pictures??

Hearing from son2 before he left yesterday to go back to school...

"Thanks mom for making my first trip back home so wonderful. The food was so good and you made the house look so cozy with all the decorations. It makes it hard to leave." I sent with him 4 sandwiches and a piece of the last pie and received this text a few hours later... "The pie is the best thing I've had to eat up here."

It warmed my heart so.

After much thought son1 has decided to turn down a good offer with an oil company for a job upon graduation and pursue grad school. This was a big decision but this company was putting undue pressure on him by only giving him 2 weeks to decided (school procedure dictates companies that participate in on campus recruitment give 4 weeks so they are not complying by the rules already and would not give him an extension- this didn't make any of us feel good. Where are the ethics here?)

A relative of a relative of a relative who is a sensitive came for dinner and told me I have a "peaceful presence" in my home of protection and thought it was my mom.

I have found the perfect pink martini recipe and will post it for the holidays.

I hope you all had loving, comforting and interesting things happen for you over the holiday.

Now on to the next holiday preparation!

Have a magical day!

Addendum ~ "Oh, Helen of Troy!"
How could I have not included the victory of my beloved
USC Trojans over UCLA?
I guess it just happens so regularly I took it for granted!!
USC ~ 28
UCLA ~ 7

Not a stellar game but victory is still as sweet as ever!

Friday, November 27, 2009

I Know Nothing.

WESTWOOD -- Someone has vandalized UCLA's beloved bruin bear statue ahead of Saturday's football game against rival USC.

The vandals cut through a protective tarp and dumped red and yellow paint on the mascot, which is poised in the center of the Westwood campus. Suspiciously, USC's colors are cardinal and gold.

Police say the prank is being treated as a felony vandalism investigation.

Workers were seen attempting to remove the paint Wednesday morning. It was not immediately known what time the vandals did the dirty work.

The bruin statue was protected with an anti-paint coating for situations such as this.

Over at the University of Southern California, students were seen camping out by the Tommy Trojan statue, which was wrapped in duct tape or plastic to protect it from such an attack.

The Trojans and the Bruins face off at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Coliseum.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009



This goes way back.

Long before I was an espadrille wearin', Bermuda bag totin', ever lovin' Tri-Delta Row Goddess, UCLA would make the trek from the west side over to south central and douse Tommy with a couple cans of blue paint and swipe his sword. For a couple weeks before the game in the Coliseum, a guard hovered 24/7 over our bronze campus god.

Sometimes UCLA beat us to the punch.

Game week was big doin's.
There was the mid-week bonfire where a stuffed teddy bear was tied to the stake and a nice toasty bonfire ensued while Coach Robinson introduced the players and talked tough.

Fight On!

There was also some creative trash-talk goin' down. One group on campus sold bruin blue buttons with yellow UCLA script lettering. This button was verrrry special. It had another letter strategically placed before the 'U'. Although humorous in that shocking way, I couldn't bring myself to buy one. I could never wear it of course, but when I was a senior I knew my days were numbered and I thought perhaps years down the road I might regret not having it as part of my collegiate memorabilia.

The last day they were being sold I caved to the rivalry. For the rest of the year it hung on my bulletin board in my west wing room in the sorority house.

Since 1979 it has been stored in the 'college box' and hasn't been seen since but I know it's there and it warms the cockles of my Trojan heart like a big bruin bonfire of love.

Covert Trojan Action
Guarding Tommy 1959

Tommy Today
Sheets and Duct Tape


Monday, November 23, 2009

The Tracks Leading Home To Pecan Pie

Tuesday will be son2's first trip home from college.
I wonder what he will feel coming home again.
Will he melt into his own bed and sleep for 12 hours in a room that looks smaller than what he remembered?

And in the between world will he stir for a moment and wonder where he is then smile in recognition drifting back into familiar security and softness?

Will he put away the pictures left on his desk in August of a high school romance that has taken its natural course?
Will he want to spend any time with us just talking and hanging out at home or with his friends who are making the journey too?

I know. That was wishful thinking.
When his group reunites I would love to hear the exaggerated stories of freshman life from the Class of 2009.

I can imagine the chest thumping of the silverbacks!
He is exerting his independence by choosing his means of transportation. His journey begins at 3 AM by taking a bus a couple hours then hopping on the train for the remainder of the trip. So much for a peaceful night's slumber until I know the train has pulled out - with him on it - going south.
The premier pilgrimage home is like no other and the revelations only happen once. There is added importance as what was last seen through the eyes of a child will be viewed with more mature perspectives and often times added appreciation. Something as simple as comfort food and what dorm pickings have deprived them of is part of it.

I've had three food requests. It reads like a last meal ~ sushi, pecan pie and more pecan pie.
Here is our favorite pie recipe that my men will not let a holiday go by without it gracing our table. After the first and second helpings the knife stays in the pie plate chipping away at the delicacy with each pass of traffic in the kitchen. It quickly dwindles by small slivers or huge pieces. Then it's gone by lunch the next day ~ the second pie.

The recipe is by David Rosengarten who used to have one of the first shows on the Food Network called "Taste." He was charming, funny and darned cute. The pie is also memorable for its own attributes. :)
Note: Since this post was written, I prefer Martha Stewart’s Pate Brisee recipe for pie crust.  It is fool proof and wonderful.  Although David’s recipe for pie crust is also very good, I feel Martha’s stands up better to lower temperature baking.  So here we are four years later since when I first posted this recipe, I’ve decided to replace David’s pie crust recipe with Martha’s.  Everything else remains the same.
Also here is a link to make a decorative pie crust.

Deep Dish Pate Brisee – Martha Stewart

3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
3/4 pound unsalted butter (3 sticks), cut into small pieces
3/4 cup ice water

In a food processor, place flour, salt and sugar. Process to combine. Add butter and process until mixture resembles course meal, about 20 seconds worth of pulsing. Add 1/4 cup water at a time in a steady stream through the feed tube with the machine running just until the dough holds together. Test the dough after adding 1/2 cup total. The dough has enough water when it holds together when squeezed in your hand. If it is still crumbly, add more water.

Turn dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap. Press into a flattened circle and wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before using.  Makes enough for two pie shells or one double crust pie.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a round 1/8 inch thick and fit it into a deep dish 8" or 9" pie plate. Decorate the edges* or crimp. Chill 1 more hour or wrap and freeze until needed. If frozen, thaw in refrigerator until ready to use.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into a round 1/8 thick and fit it into a deep dish 8" or 9" pie plate. Decorate the edges*. Chill 1 more hour.
Preheat oven to 400 F. Prick bottom and sides of shell, fit it with a round or parchment paper or foil and weight it down with rice or beans. Bake shell for 15 minutes. Remove paper or foil liner and weight and bake for an additional 10 minutes. In a small bowl whisk together the egg yolk with 1/4 tsp. of water and brush sides of shell with mixture. This will keep your crust from becoming soggy. Return shell to oven and bake for 2 minutes more.

Pecan Pie

6 Tbls. unsalted butter
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1 Tbl. vanilla
1 cup finely ground pecans
1 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 275 F. In a bowl set over simmering water melt butter. Remove bowl from heat and whisk in sugar, salt, eggs - one at a time, corn syrup and vanilla. Return bowl to heat and stir until mixture si shiny and warm to the touch. Add finally ground pecans and chopped pecans. Pour into the crust. Bake for 50-60 miuntes or until center feels set, but still slightly soft. Cool at least 4 hours.
* Try these pastry cutters from Williams-Sonoma.

I have them and they are great.
When you press the button on the top of the cutter not only is the shaped released but the pattern is imprinted. Definitely worth a trip to the mall this week.

Costco has 2 lbs. bags of pecan halves for $8.29. Bargain.

Have a wonderful holiday with your friends and family.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Life According To Mitch Robbins

One thing I've learned:

I need to stay off the computer when I'm having a bad day.

A couple weeks ago I had one of those 'procedures' (hello? 50's) and between the lingering effects of the anesthesia and severe induced PMS in pill form I went straight into a downward spiral with the worst being last weekend. I have almost fully recovered, am off the temporary meds and am starting to feel like my old self again. Whoever the guest blogger was who wrote such a downer post will not be asked back again! (if you didn't read it, don't bother, but it was me).

That was my blog on drugs!

I love my girlie pink-a-licous, sometimes frivolous blog. I love lamenting about the mysteries of life. I will always be out there, honest and open because it's who I am. I love connecting to this wonderful community (never in question). Eventhough I still don't know what surprises my life's transitions hold for me one thing is for certain, I much rather be associated with this quote from another Billy Crystal movie ~

"I'll have what she's having."

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Monogrammed Baking Boxes For Less

With holiday baking soon to begin and inspired by Hopsy and her darling monogrammed green toile boxes, I began to search for boxes to use this season.

I found what looks like to be the same supplier for
Williams-Sonoma's French Pastry Boxes

but for a lot less.

20 sheets of 20" x 30" patterned waxed paper.

with more patterns to choose from.

Monogrammed Cookie Boxes 7" x 5" x 3"

Williams-Sonoma 6 for $29 10 for $23
10 for $17.25 without monogramming

Gotta love the cupcake boxes too ~

Williams-Sonoma 4 for $29 (yikes!) 6 for $23
6 for $17.25 without monogramming
(much better)

Other sizes available.

Happy Baking!

Thursday, November 19, 2009


I borrowed this photo from another blog and archived it. It is just too good not to share but I can't recall where it came from. I will gladly give credit when I figure it out unless someone knows.

Monday, November 16, 2009

When I began blogging late one night last January my heart raced. I had no idea where I was going. I just knew I had to begin the journey. That is one thing I believe we share, the excitement of creation in our own journalistic world.

People often express quite eloquently what blogging has meant to them and I easily follow the template laid before me. Perhaps because I am trying to find a new place in my life and purpose on a daily basis I am looking at it with more introspection than I normally would or when I first began.

This is what has been bubbling up for me: I find writing for public view can make me feel very exposed at times as I tend to be free with my thoughts and words. It is an insecurity I think must be present in everyone who gives a piece of themselves, their soul, for scrutiny, praise or intentional revolution whether in the written word or another art form.

Sometimes I am very pleased that I am able to convey my thoughts through the venue of writing and photography. Sometimes I am amazed I can learn a new technical trick by myself. Sometimes I am embarrassed by being too open with my emotions and personal information and that I am willing to share this with people I have not met face to face and sometimes I find myself concerned what these people must think of me for doing so. Sometimes I feel I must give a disclaimer and a light apology when telling others about my blog before they read it for all its 'girlie pinkness' and frivolousness which I know at times it can be. Sometimes I regret telling certain people about my blog because we have lost touch and although they can still access my life online the sharing is not reciprocal.

Like anything in life that has genuine worth and value there are checkpoints that let you know that it is. Learning a new way to navigate and express oneself should be filled with self-exploration or at least I hope it is for me. A part of me wants to go in a new blogging direction. Another part wants to stay where I am and continue to evolve here.

I still have no idea where I'm headed but I do know I have to continue with the journey and I have valued being part of yours and loved you being part of mine.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Fabulous Sugar Doll Blogger Award!

I am always appreciative that someone would think enough of me and my blog to pass along a special recognition so I'd like to thank LPC at her Privilege blog for tagging me with this award.  Apparently, I should also thank Sugar Daddy Ken for bringing us together.  I have recently become acquainted with this intelligent woman's writings who is a fellow empty nester and who surprisingly is on the same time zone as I.  For a slice of the upper crust visit her blog for a sophisticated serving.
Thank you again, Skye Peale!

The tag specifies to list 10 things about me that my readers might not know.  I feel I am pretty much an open blogging book and if you have been reading my blog for even a short while you'll know this but I'll give it my best shot to add some tidbits I haven't included before and perhaps a 'wow' factor or two.
No promises though.  :)

I was once a guest of Steve Allen and Jayne Meadows and partied with them in my PJ's.  Steve looked dashing in his smoking jacket and Jayne had curlers in her hair while doing KP duty.

I took part in a medical study during an annual exam and received $25 in theater gift certificates from my Dr. whose office was participating in the study.  They were looking for volunteers so I thought if I could help advance medicine I would be very happy to do so and it might even be interesting.  If a new procedure for cervical cancer detection becomes available as easily as taking a picture during your visit and pap smears become obsolete, I am taking part of the credit for reducing the anxiety of millions of women so we no longer fear the words,
"just scoot down a little further, no, come on down, juuuuust a little more".

I won a bet with my best friend in college, although I can't remember what the bet was I remember the stakes were high.  He presented me with a funny gift on the steps of Bovard Auditorium at USC of which I still have tucked away in a drawer somewhere.  The exact location where I received the gift can be seen in the movie Legally Blonde where Elle is pronouncing to the girls that David gave her the greatest pleasure she had ever known.
Must be something about those steps.

  My personal home office is painted lavender.
It's the one room where I can be girlie to my heart's content.

  My sterling pattern is Rose Point by Wallace and I only have 9 place settings and 6 serving pieces.  My intention was to always complete the set but it doesn't seem as important now.

  Upon arriving in Hollywood to make films in the 20's, my uncle was kicked out of the Hollywood Presbyterian Church for apparently 'womanizing'.  Aren't family skeletons in the closet fun?

I am a close personal friend with a member of Congress who is squeaky clean but a party animal when you get him going at home.  I've had the best and silliest times at his casa where Mr. P.M. and I are constantly laughing when we get together.  He's awful at bocce ball but I will say he makes the best, damn Mai Tais I have ever tasted!! 

  I received two honors from my home town when I was a 16.

I have worn my hair in a ponytail only once in my life that I can recall.

I have a fringe tie to a Real Housewife of the OC but please do not hold that against me.  I know a cast member from Little League daze and she helped me out when I got into a fender bender when she heard the crunch and came down to the street to see if she could help by calling the Highway Patrol.  This was years ago.  Although she might recognize my face I doubt she would even know my name and I like it that way.

I tag Rebecca June!
With her keen sense of style and her photos from a recent trip to Paris, this gal has got it goin' on!

Saturday, November 14, 2009


Do I need one? Not really. But I am thinking about it. I am.

This is totally new territory for me and I would like to know if you have one and what you feel are the pros and cons.

I have always loved the sensory experience of cracking open a new book, the smell, the feel ~ everything.
So you might wonder what is appealing to me about Kindle?
I'm surprised to say many things are piquing my interest.

Did you know...'s only a third of an inch thick and it is 10.2 oz and wireless?

... you can read it in the sunlight without glare and there is no back light like a computer?

... you can read more than books on it such as newspapers and magazines?

... you can adjust the text size, write comments in the margins, bookmark pages, access the built in dictionary with your cursor (the best reason of all) and wiki?

It also has a 'read to me feature' and you can hook up your MP3 player and listen to background music.

It also instantly finds your place where you last left off!

I am also thinking of the green effect of using less trees or recycled processing and having less clutter in my house.  The last novel I bought - The Lost Symbol (which I give a 'B' rating) will now sit on my shelf until I donate it.  I don't do the library.  Ever.  (Somethin' 'bout those crackly cello book covers and worn, dirty pages.  ick.).

I think in the long run I will read more because I can sample the first few pages of the text and it's convenient to take along with me if I know I'm going to be waiting somewhere.  It also has a battery charge of 14 days!  Then there are the costs of books compared to a Kindle download. Most books on Kindle are $9.99.

Of course I had to research and find out if I could accessorize properly.
I found these two covers but there are tons of them out there from plain black to tooled leather ~

M-Edge Fuchsia Leather

Oh Wait! ...
there's my girl Kate

Jane Street Nook Cover $125
for the Barnes & Noble Nook
(now I'll have to research this device which debuts the end of this month!)

front ~ "she kept her nose in a book"
(I just love that!)

back ~ "and her head in the clouds"

and everything in between ~

A friend of mine swears by her Kindle for her sojourns from OC to DC.
Originally, I scoffed at the notion, but now... especially with kate beckoning me...

So what do you think?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Come To Mama

Headed to South Coast Plaza today to visit the Henri Bendel store.

Just window shopping. Really.

I am weakening...


Good luck today on this Friday the 13th!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

philosophy NEW!

Love this time of year when philosophy jingles it's way into the holiday season with new scents.

Here's a couple in the lineup and some seasonal favorites.

QVC exclusive until Dec. at an intro price

Philosophy's shimmer lotions are truly lovely to wear.
Find it at (above link).
I looked at Sephora and Nordstrom last night and they did not have it.

Take the set apart and give individual bottles as little remembrance gifts.
How perfect for your cookie exchange group!
The packaging is great.
At Nordstrom and Sephora too.

philosophy has lots of baking themed gifts sets.

Cute, cute, cute packaging and all scents are so yummy!

Love what's cookin'!

Check out Chocolate Layer Cake too!
OMGosh ~ smells just one baking in the oven!

philosophy is also having a contest every day...

Entering is as easy as entering your email address.
I've gotten close but so far, no cigar.
With a grand prize of $2500 worth of products I'm going to keep trying.

Good luck to you too! :)

2010: A Spaced Out Mother's Odyssey

2010. I am already there. I inadvertently cut up my old credit card with an expiration date of 9/10 when a new one came in for 9/14. 2014? Upon seeing puzzle pieces of plastic Mr. P.M. asked why I did this. I told him the card had expired. He asked me what year I thought it was.

My mind has been on 2010 for the last month beginning with booking our hotel room for son1's graduation in June from MIT. How can he be graduating from college already and be applying to PhD programs and interviewing for real life jobs that will not bring him back across the Rockies or even west of the Mississippi? My thoughts hadn't carried me to think this far into the future regarding the next convergence in his life. Wasn't it just yesterday we were picking out a blue plastic bucket for him to put celestial stickers on for his cubby in pre-school? I swear it was. Warp speed has a way of making it seem so.

Due to the Laws of the Universe and college commitments my precious planet has only orbited my solar system quarterly for the last four years and being like a planet in an astrological chart, resides in my house for a short time only to leave again on it's own charted course. I have tried to boldly go where all mothers have gone before with his initial launch in 2006 but with this new mission scheduled for June 2010 I am feeling the void more pronouncedly. It is a new world that is unknown and uncomfortable. I'm afraid my progress has now turned retrograde.

If I contemplate all this too long it makes my head spin. I get the same feeling when looking upwards into a clear night's sky contemplating my place in the universe. My head lightens when my mind takes to places of such vast wonderment. As a human, I don't have the capability to fully comprehend the universe. As a mother, I can't fully comprehend how we are no longer the center of his.

"Also Sprach Zarathrustra" ~ Richard Strauss

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

In Honor Of All Who Served And Walked The Line.

Thank you,
for a life disrupted to keep us safe.

Aunt Mildred - WAC nurse - Europe
Aunt Kathryn - WAV nurse - Europe
Uncle Weegar - Army - Europe
Uncle Royce - Air Force - Europe
Uncle Alex - Navy - Europe
Uncle Dick - Air Force - South Pacific & Europe
Uncle Bill - Army
Uncle Carm - Army - Europe & Saudi Arabia
Dad Art - Air Force - Stateside
Uncle Jack - Navy
Papa Hal - Air Force - Europe
Mom Jeana - USO - Los Angeles
Aunt Lorraine - USO - Los Angeles

Viet Nam
Brother Randy - Marines & Reserves
Cousin John - Marines
Kenneth - Air Force

Cousin Steven - Air Force - Greenland
Cousin Jen - Air Force - Vandenberg

Music: Military Marches - The United States Marine Band

Originally posted on 5/20/09

When One Small Classic Croc Apparently Isn't Nearly Enough

When did the classic subtleties of this...

morph into this...

to ultimately become this...

An 8 croc orgy of highly ostentatious style and taste.

Yours, for a feeding frenzy on the wallet at $165.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Kate Spade Sample Sale TODAY!!

Please find a good home for her so I don't have to.

I am weakening...


($5 shipping)

Terivs Tumblers and Scout Bags Team Up!

Totable Tumblers are here!

Tervis Tumblers (my fav glass du jour, filled to the brim with ice every du jour) has been paired up with Scout totes. The insulated tumblers are pink patterned on the outside and green patterned on the inside. If you click on to the site you'll be able to see a close up that I wasn't able to upload.

Now the only question is...

Large Tumbler Tote

Small Tumbler Tote

Love them both!

Monday, November 9, 2009

"All That Glitters... should be MINE!"

"Kate is out there, and I'm lovin' it!"

Gold Coast MaryAnn

Because I live on the Gold Coast of CA (well, inland a little, but just a tad) and I have a niece named Marianne.

Pink Sparkly Shoes

Puhleese. An obvious trick question!

Single Ball Earrings

Time Square's got nothing on these babies!
Happy New Year!

Disco Fever Link Bracelet

A sparkly cuff. My true love.
I cannot, should not, will not resist!

What things do you have that make you say,
" I cannot, should not, will not resist?"

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