Wednesday, February 27

Beautiful Beads

Thanks to my "Botany Photo of the Day" widget this lovely image popped up on my desktop this morning. Tortula muralis, or joint-toothed moss. How does something look so delicate and prickly at the same time? Tell me. Wow.

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Into the Kitchen: Thai Chicken Coconut Soup

What's up, dinner. You look fantastic. Maybe it's the coconut milk, or maybe the jalapeño....

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Monday, February 18

Find It on Film: Persepolis

I cannot wait to see this movie.

UPDATE: Go see it! The nod to paper animation techniques is just so resonant with the story.

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Sunday, February 17

Nebraska Poets on Sheldon Painters: On NET Radio

The final weeks for entering the Nebraska Poets on Sheldon Paintings Contest are here! And we found ourselves on NET Radio this weekend. The piece featured William Kloefkorn, Grace Bauer, Mary Birky, all talking about the project. Here's hoping for a successful submission period!

(Above painting is from the Sheldon Memorial Gallery collection: Georgia O'Keeffe, "New York, Night," oil on canvas, 1929. I've heard she painted her own car into the piece, the
little yellow number at the street corner just above bottom left....)

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Thursday, February 14

Sweet Find: Chlorine

Little-known fact: I have (and/or have started) a vintage evening purse collection. And lately I've been lusting after the clutches from Chlorine. They are--in a word--glorious.

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Wednesday, February 13

Great Book: Animal House

Loving this book by Catherine Ledner--color, candor, spirit, foxy-ness.... Loving it: Animal House.

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Monday, February 11

Saint Valentine's

Thinking about Valentine's Day: what if we kept Neruda's words in mind?

Laugh at the night,
at the day, at the moon,

laugh at the twisted
streets of the island,
laugh at this clumsy

boy who loves you,
but when I open
my eyes and close them,

when my steps go,

when my steps return,

deny me bread, air,
light, spring,
but never your laughter....

Happy Freedom to Marry week--h
ave a good one!

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Into the Kitchen: Peach Bellinis

With the gray, gray sky outside, I'm thinking ahead: peach bellinis.

A little tease for the warmer months:

1 ripe white peach, pitted but not peeled, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. simple
syrup (see related recipe at left)
2 cups Prosecco (an Italian sparkling wine), Champagne, sparkling wine or nonalcoholic sparkling wine

In a blender, combine the cubed peach flesh, lemon juice and simple syrup and blend well. Divide the peach puree among 4 chilled glasses. Gently pour in the sparkling wine. Stir to combine. Serves 4.

Check out the history of the drink
here. An ekphrastic refreshment? I say I love it.

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Sunday, February 10

In the Spotlight: LA Ciytzine

Get this: LA Cityzine is having a writing contest and entering is free. Yes, free. Check out the complete rules here. Plus, my best friend has a great article here. What more could you want? Enter, enter!

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Dreaming of Flowers

Kate French has some beautiful shots up. I love ranunculus. Unfortunately, they don't grow here! Regardless, I've got gardening on my mind. What seeds to plant this spring? I'm looking here and here.

And how about this be-pillowed chair? Looks like a dream and I bet it sits like one too.

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Tuesday, February 5

Sweet Find: Papel Picado

Is spring here yet? I'm ready for some papel picado. (Did you know you can even get them personalized?) Bring on the color and light.

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Next time you're planning a road-trip I recommend checking out What better way to chart your course than by these snapshot quickstops?

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Monday, February 4

Into the Kitchen: Linguine Bolognese

Snow's on the way! Tomorrow I'm thinking will be a day for slow-cooking which favorite bolognese sauce. The recipe doesn't look like much but, oh my goodness, it's the best and will treat us right until we can make it to this paradise of the delicious revolution....

Linguine Bolognese

2 strips of bacon or pancetta, diced (optional, I often just use a little olive oil instead for a lighter version)
1 1/2 cups of yellow onion
1 1/4 cups of shredded carrots, chopped (getting the bag of shredded carrots saves time!)
3/4 cup of celery, finely chopped
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 lb ground chuck
4 tsps white vinegar
1 1/2 tsps minced garlic
1/3 cup tomato paste
3 cups beef broth (the good kind, not bouillon cubes!)
3/4 cups milk
3/4 cups heavy cream
1/2 linguine (fresh is best)
Finely grated parmesan cheese

In a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat, cook bacon until crisp about 6 minutes. Add the onion, celery, pepper and cook, stirring frequently until soft.

In a separate pan, cook the ground chuck, stirring to break up clumps, until browned, about 5 minutes. Drain meat and add to sauce pan with vegetables.

Add vinegar, garlic and tomato paste, and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the beef broth and bring to a boil. Simmer, partially covered, for 15 minutes.

Combine the cream and milk in a bowl. After the sauce has simmered, start adding the cream mix little by little--about 1/4 cup at a time over 1 1/2 hours. By the end of the time, the sauce should be thick and creamy. Toss with pasta, grate a little parmesan and serve. Yum.

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Backyard Field Guide: Amazing Amaryllis

This winter we've decided to bring some of the backyard indoors....

fter months of waiting the amaryllis are here and I'm officially hooked on 'forcing' bulbs. The weather outside is so gray and murky and yet here are these enormous flowers and leaves in my living room. You can't really tell from the images but the stems are about three and a half feet tall. I love their Greek name too: 'hippeastrum,' horseman's star. I bought my bulbs from Brent & Becky's, growers I highly recommend. These plants almost make me happy for winter and somehow I'm already looking forward to the next....

UPDATE: The dog loves the flowers too...or is it the sunlight?

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