Saturday, February 27, 2016

L'omelette de Marie~

First you need eggs..preferably eggs that are in your family..

Just kidding..but our son-in-law had just given us some beautiful eggs from his girls..and Marie had just posted a recipe that looked so good..
I made it for lunch on that cold Valentine's Day we  had.
You can find Marie's recipe here..and below..

I had extra I used them also..and my garlic scape chives..geesh they freeze so well all chopped always have some on hand!

La Recette

Courtesy of Marie at The English Kitchen

Here's what I did because of the extra ings..

6 rashers of bacon
as many mushrooms as you want I had about 1.5 cups
salt and pepper
3 eggs
1/4 cup milk
garlic chives

some sharp cheddar cheese..

Start by partially cooking the bacon in  water.. Bring water to a boil in your omelet pan..and cook bacon..drain water..cook bacon longer until crisped up..
Remove from pan..cook sliced mushrooms until well done and burnished;)  Not boiled.:)Season them.
Remove..drain fat..add 1 tbsp of butter ..heat the same pan..
meanwhile you have whisked up your eggs w/ the milk...season..add garlic scape chives if you have..
Put the mix in the hot pan..and cook..lifting up around the omelet so that the omelet will cook,
When omelet is golden brown and done..lay the bacon on one side.. top with the cheese and the mushrooms.
Fold omelet over and serve.
One omelet is perfect for Jacques and I..I cut it in half.
I love a good omelet;)♥

It's been miserable here weather wise..winds..freezing rain..power outages..

I keep busy..

I am so grateful for busy and still grateful for winter..just not for power outages..

a vintage cigar box came in handy today..

Since I aquired this WN travel set..maybe 3 years ago..I have ..
disliked it a lot.
You rarely  hear me say that.
It was hard to open..every aspect was hard to open..and the water bottle?
Ripped the corner on the water bottle the first time I opened not even out of the proverbial gate and the bottle leaked.
So I have hated it .
Nothing worked well in my kit..
and seeing the bottle wrapped in Saran..bugs me.always.
So I put it aside..FOREVER.
It's the Field Box plus and I think I got a lemon.
Love lemons..;) just not in a paint kit..

and then I found the cigar box...  and put the WN kit in it..with brushes and papers ..and a little easel type thing to hold paper up..little cups for water..and eraser..a Micron..etc..

Just looking at it..makes me much happier. And I don't smoke.

I love things..that make other things seem so much better.
A cigar box can do that;)
It hides Saran Wrap well~:)

Windy Saturday night for a change here..;)

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Meet Philomena~Or I seem to have a lot to talk about these days:)

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice..That's what little boys are made of..
and now I know this to be true.
Because of..the Alphabet Boys♥

This is Philomena..she flew here from Texas..arrived safe and sound and ready to brave our cold winters..she has a special spot on my windowsill..that way the sun can warm her.

She was not frazzled.. nor tired,nor jet lagged..
She traveled extra baggage..unless cuteness would have counted.
She is tiny enough that she could have  lots of room in her first class seat.
She enjoyed the best French Cheese and a spot of wine.
She read her favorite books..and requested Ratatouille as her movie.

I am going to take such good care of her..

I loved baking those shortbreads with her..the recipe was courtesy of  here..we loved munching on them w/ tea and honey..
I took out cups a lovely client gave me..they were his mother' sweet was that?  He and his wife came for dinner and he noticed I loved old things..and old china..the next time I saw him..he insisted I have they did not use them.his lovely wife agreed.
Years ago.Seems like 100 actually..and other yesterday.

Many people have collections..I seem to have comfortably ...serendipitously... and happily.. fallen into the cookie stamp/cutter collection category withouth knowing what hit me.

A new always thrilling.

Damn it feels good to be a baker comfy  w/ sharing the spotlight w/ Philomena.
Generous of heart:)
Like Custard Cream..and the French ones..and the Home Made..And Love You..and Linzers..Starbucks..Ricardo,Christmas and Valentines ones..Easter and Halloween..Minions ..Star Wars have been relegated to the Littles..the list goes on and on...Brigitte..remember?

Je te remercie Sarah:)
Un coup de coeur pour moi.

You may remember Philo in our gardens too:)Philo was in a clients garden..when she moved..Philo came home w/ me.
Is it just me or has winter..flown by..well  .. is flying by..?
I think I talk more in winter..because we partially hibernate.

I bought Calendula seeds..I forgot last year and they didn't self seed..
I missed only really miss something when it's gone~
I was reminded all summer~

Friday, February 19, 2016

Cara's Cookies~

My daughters had 2 sweet baby sitters when we moved to the country..but their favorite..was Cara..Cara lived across the street and she was the kind of babysitter you would want your son to come with as his sweetheart.
She was a sweetheart.
Her nana is the one who had knit all those beautiful Barbie clothes for our girls..some items were knit w/ toothpicks..she is long gone..and Cara is a mom herself now.
Sometimes Cara would bring cookies and we eventually started making them:)
I think I have shared them before..but years and years ago..and they are worth repeating I recently made them for bus duty..and Jacques said..keep some here too okay?
Actually they were a bigger hit w/ Jacques:)

We had such beautiful glitter days recently..the trees and gardens sparkled to bits.
Have I mentioned I love winter?
I confess..I do.

I was cleaning up my craft be precise..the day before my birthday..that picture frame is in my craft room..
I made it in 1981..the date is at the back..a fun little ceramics class I took back then..I loved the fun times in that class..everyone was so..copacetic..very much like my art class was many years later.

anyways..the foto of me has been in that frame untouched since then..
as I took it off the craft room bureau..the photo fell out and I saw this at the back ..Belle Chérie.

I never ever get feelings of my mom being here like some are lucky to feel..

but when I saw and read this.

I welled up with tears and still am writing's as if she was wishing me a happy birthday in her own way..from up above.

This would have been in 1955 when I was 1 1/2..
my parents had 2 sons then..and had lost a daughter  of 5..before I was born.
She had beautiful handwriting.
She had beautiful everything♥.

I have no handwritten notes from her..very little photos..tangible momentos meant for just me..things are different now..and even 
when my girls were little..we kept baby books..etc..which they now have and the books are filled with loving words..

Keep writing to your Littles..give them some tangible things to remember..

Funnily enough this past week I was explaining to Oli in French what  calligrams are..and a message is..a note to someone..
So after the little exercise in his book..
I wrote him a note (message)..had him read it..and he tucked it in his pocket..
he then said he wanted to write me a note..
it was on note paper w/ my name at the bottom..Monique..
the Littles  sometimes forget our real's nana and grandad and that's it.

Oli wrote this..
Monique te le plu jelio eau mond
de Oli.

Oli is 6..grade 1..he reads so well..his spelling will improve:)
But to me..this spelling is extraordinary♥

That's a great message/note.Write notes to your Littles and Bigs.
Real ones.

The recipe could not be easier..

La recette~

1/2 cup margarine..Becel for me
1 cup sugar
1 egg
 vanilla of your choice..I used my vanilla sugar

Cream the margarine and sugar until light and fluffy..add egg and vanilla and combine well

add 1 1/2 cup flour that you have added 1/2 tsp baking soda and a pinch of salt
Combine well
With a spatula now..or wooden spoon ..add 2 cups Rice Krispies,6 ozs of chocolate chips..and 1 cup of raisins.
Mix well
Drop by tablespoons..flatten just a bit..
Bake in a pre-heated 350 F oven for 12 mins.

Perfect w/ a cup of tea..or coffee..or milk!

Now be forewarned..Oli picked out all the raisins..he loves raisins..just not w/ choco chips in cookies..Max tried to pick out the raisins..ended up eating them leaving a few raisins on the side:)
Lucas ate them all..
It's what you are used to..
No one made spaghetti sauce like my mom..until my daughter made it even better;)

Bon Weekend.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

As my friend Susan says:"So stinkin' cute~"

I was browsing around for something or on Pinterest..(which I never found a cute watercolor that mentioned a watercolor watch..the cute art work led to a site and a video..

I wanted to make it then and there.
That was late yesterday..
Today's snowglobe pretty morning turned into a mess of freezing rain and rain.
so I retreated to the craft room..
And began..

I knew I had a very vintage piece of Velcro..from when my daughters were small and you know how old they are;)
I wondered during the night if it was long enough.
I also wondered what I would use..and thought of a small flip top container that was pink that came in a $ store travel necessity bag.
So many items could and would be perfect.Just opening my girlie drawer of make up and things..little round blush compacts would be ideal too..and of course more beautiful ornate things..
so I was stuck w/ a pink box and an old cream sort of velcro..most probably discolored white..
I looked at my fabrics and what would go w/ hide the ugly Velcro..then I cut the fabric to glue onto the strap.
I made a little round label..w/ World Labels template..and a digital download of a flower from and We lived happily ever after.
A craft punch..and glued the label to the see through pink container..filled it w/ small samples of watercolor..they suggest you paint the lid white to mix your colors..
A water brush..small journal..good to go:)
F U N.
How nice was that artist/photographer and daughter to share this?
Hope you find it fun too.

If you are going to add fabric.. make sure you lift the watch to tuck the fabric under w/ glue.
What else?
My wrist is so small..I needed much less..and still cut have to leave one part..unfabric..ed..for the 2 velcros to join.
Once that container is stuck on the is STUCK..don't even think of moving it;)
I did..and it did not work.But luckily the measurement divas were with me..and all was well.
Let the paints dry..perfectly before closing up shop:)/Watch.
PS forgive the tint in my's as dark as anything w/ the rain..I went to a window..but you know..
I wish I would have had a different Velcro and do it a little better..but it was a nice starting point.
I know Susan would not mind me stealing her line for this;)
Below.. what my peony garden can look like when it's not under snow and's hiding you the paints in the watch:)

Sunday, February 14, 2016


As I mentioned ,our youngest daughter's birthday is February 21rst..39 years old..
I still remember bringing her home from the hospital..a little heat lamp directed on her bare bottom in her crib at home..she had developed a bad rash and they suggested we not put a diaper on when we got home..but to keep her clean and was so easy as she slept on her tummy..(back then ..they did..)..w/her tiny feet tucked under her like a tiny little frog..
I remember those days so clearly..

we had two cribs..because Mylène  was only 18 months old..and one of my favorite French singers..Michel Delpech (sadly ,recently passed away..) had a song called..  Chez Nous.....I know for certain it was on my LP..but I can only find it by H spoke of home and that it smelled of soup and a baby did..our home had the most divine baby smelled cozy and wonderful to me.I was 23..and had had a pretty tough 2 yrs 19-20.. but 21 blessed us w/ our eldest daughter..and then 18 months later..another.
There was nowhere else I wanted to be..they were perfect and fun and cute..and I played house w/ them..I made clothes w/ velcro and some of our outfits matched.
I didn't miss university or work..I had all of a sudden no other aspirations than to just be there loving every minute of playing with my dolls:)♥
Now..I play with their dolls:)

So getting back to my post..we celebrated her birthday,yesterday, Valentine's weekend..
you saw the furry friends..the heart cookies..I made linzers..I adore linzers..
I froze one disk for future linzers..
This time I used an old Gourmet magazine recipe..

For her cake I used one of Heather's recipes..Heather has a BEAUTIFUL blog I LOVE..Curly Girl Kitchen..I find myself sometimes looking back to her posts from her early days..I have no clue how I found her..but I never miss a post..her wedding..she did everything herself..the cute things..ideas..her home..her husband..everything..her photography is just spot on perfect.
A cake is a lot for J and I..but for our's great..
I made her vanilla bean latte cake..
I froze my 3 layers and frosted it the day of the celebration.
It was probably - 40 outside w/ the wind chill factor.
The day before I had frosted the kids cupcakes imagining perfect rosettes as I know how..
Eeeeek..nothing was working..the buttercream..I kept adding stuff..oh lala.. nothing worked..
looked like spaguetti when I was done..
I could not figure out what I did wrong..Next morning..I frosted the cake.. I even reduced the butter etc..

as I went on..I knew why..the fireplace was making the great room so nice and warm..but the kitchen was too chilly for buttercream!!
Especially by  big bright windows.

EEK butter..would not stay supple.
All I can say is thank Goodness I had made chocolate words..had the cupcakes:) And had bought the banner.
I would have LOVED to make Heather proud..
I did learn an invaluable not attempt buttercream on Siberian days.

You can find the recipe for Heather's Vanilla Bean Latte Cake and her beautiful blog and gorgeous

The cute card my daughter made..she loves to make her cards now..she finds art she likes..this one is a reproduction of Liana Hee.
She coud easily just do them on her own.
She inherited my mother's talent and hair:)
We had Indian food and their home was beautifully decorated..look at her fireplace..she made all those..and big flowers like that hung over the dining to make people feel special.
The bookmark/hanging hearts with one of my fave sayings and the vintage Valentine were a special delivery from an overseas friend who bakes and cooks incredibly well;)

I love vintage valentine's,home made art......
tulips in February..and I enjoyed a movie this weekend called..Summer In February.A friend recommended it for the scenery..and right she was..and the ART....the easels..AJ's studio..then Florence's..and seeing Matthew....just a lovely Friday night movie..true,sad story.
Or a Valentine's Day movie.

Bon Dimanche!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

More ♥'s

Furry Friends~


Le Lionceau

Je t'aime.

Added sptinkles..the way to go w/ 4 Littles..more exciting..

Le Bisou~

Snow's mom captured this and she sent it to me;)

Noah and his funny friends:) In the snow..Michaela and Noah..are taking cooking classes together:)
She's so cute..that's her little brother Ben in the middle and there is a wee baby sister at home~ Abbie~
Littles and snow.. priceless.
You're looking at life ..that is normal for our girls liked being silly and my Littles like it too..
I look at blogs from far and wide w/ much more decorum..and think..
we have never really known that.

Speaking of decorum..Downton should hear my comments..:(
Jacques even laughs..

Mr.Carson?  Change now..or you have lost all my love.
Mrs Hughes? Bet you are wondering if you made a wise decision?
Daisy? Come on...Can you just let Mrs Patmore be..? After everything she has done for you? have my undivided attention and empathy now.
Mary..every episode you seem smaller and smaller to essence.
Do you love George? Ice cold mommy.
And I can tell there's no chemistry w/ your new beau.

The whole tour of Downton Abby and your ignorance of it's contents..all of you..
..shame on you.

I am so tough this week!

This guy..braves the winter the manner his mistress sees fit:)
Lord Grizzly..freshly

Every year sure as sugar,I come home w/ 4 furry friends for the Littles..for Valentine's day..and then Jacques and I think of which one goes better w/ which Little..this year we were polar opposites..
I let him choose...

Like our daughters names..we had a pact 42 yrs. ago..I pick the boys names ,he picks the girls..I never had a pick!
This's his choices..
I was ready to pick numbers

too complicated he said..
he is right.
I bowed out.

So meet the 4 that made the cut for this year..maybe the last.

I made  special cookies for the Littles....I bought this cookie cutter last yr..many many many days after Valentine' our one and only WS..a day's trip away..almost.. w/ pay tolls..and boring views..

but a great place for General that city mall area..IMHO..and fun shopping in a shopping city.
I used a recipe from Bake at's Bridget..
the recipe made enough for the 4 large cookies and the mini hearts ,that are in fact part of the cookie..

I have to give you tips re using these huge cookie cutters..see many may have Christmas I do..

So these cookies are BIG..and w/ all the cut outs..the makes them hard to lift when raw or just baked..

1.I rolled out each cookie on an ind.square of parchment ,so I could lift the cookie..on the parchment and place it on my baking tray..each tray held 2 cookies..and I baked the small hearts in another batch..because they are tiny and bake quickly.
2.I remove the small hearts before baking..I make sure that when I am pressing the cookie cutter..I stretch around each tiny  heart,well,so that every heart comes off..some still remain..don't lift the cookie ,lift the whole parchment and curl it back a bit to get that heart out..very few should remain..3 was tops on mine after I perfected my little method..
3.I put my cut out cookies in a screened in porch that has a cold outside temp..until they were stiff:)
4.Keep an cookies took longer than her recommended cooking time..maybe 10-11 could need less..

5.When done ,lift the whole parchment and place on cooling rack..let cool..  and THEN..gently slide a spatula to remove from the paper and leave on rack till cooled completely .

6.I thought the boys would like a bit more I put the Wilton the form of hearts and sprinkled the sprinkles..that do stay put ..where you placed the gel..
Place a waxed paper if you want to recuperate the sprinkles that don't make the cut..I forgot..I had a million sprinkles on my The Dirt Devil came in handy..then I sparkled everything..
I hope these instructions do not deter you from trying BIG ind.cookies..I know the Littles will be happy.

Chocolate cookie batter and I are not a match made in heaven..the cocoa powder..etc ..the batter..a chocolate mess..until all is well again.
Now that I know how easy these cookies can be..I look forward to ind.Christmas ones..I did make large Easter ones last yr..but not in chocolate.
Our youngest daughter turns 39 on the 21rst..we are celebrating this coming weekend..

Seems like yesterday~

I'll be working on a cake..and cupcakes...