Saturday, December 18, 2010

Let's take a break from the holiday rush ...



... have a cup of coffee and chat about beautiful and absurd and fun and outrageous things.

In the holiday frame of mind, I've been curious why I am dreaming about taking these revolving seven-foot high crystal and gold pillar lamps and wrapping them with spirals of ivy and mistletoe and placing them beside the front entrance. Did I mention: they revolve?

Now some might find these a little over the top (as such a thing exists), but I believe I've figured out why I am so attracted to all that glitters and shines.

I had a deprived childhood.

No. It's true. All through my childhood, I begged (by which I mean screamed and cried and kicked my heels on the floor of the grocery) my mother to let us put Glass Wax stenciled pictures on the windows at Christmas time.She always refused. She always had some argument or other: they weren 't pretty; they wouldn't look nice with the other decorations; they would make too much mess; they were too expensive (yes! she even tried THAT, knowing full well that the person kicking the floor of the grocery was 15 years old and knew how much money 39¢ was!).

So is it any wonder that I am so warped and in need of extreme at the holiday time? It's my mother's fault. As is everything, of course.


Don't you just LOVE this photo of Yves Montand, lifting Edith Piaf for a kiss?! How short was she? Well, to begin with, he's not very tall - plus, notice her shoes? She's not even as tall as she appears to be! I do wish whoever Magic Marker'ed (is that a proper verb?) all over this photo hadn't done so.

Doesn't this look like a fun place to shop?! It's called Gypsy Honeymoon. I first ran across it online - but then they did an article about it in Bliss Victoria. If I'm ever in San Francisco - and I haven't been for ten years - but you never know! - I'm heading there directly from the airport!

How ticked off would you be if you had to be one of the damned swans? That really goes past being a mere runner up. That's like saying you had some cheek to even enter in the first place.

Ann Wood, one of my absolute favorite fanciful artists, has created a new series of charming papier maché and fabric boats. Isn't it gorgeous! I so want to have it soaring over the dining room table! See more of her work at Ann Wood Handmade.

Do you do special holiday baking? I'm not much of a baker - and living in a city (and a mere two blocks from the fabulous bakeries in Little Italy!) there's really no need to mess up one's own kitchen with flour in the air. But at Christmas time, I really do like to make some cookies. Nothing extravagant mind you. Just plain old down home cookies. Usually, after the holidays, I can always find a part-time job...

anyway. I always make chocolate chip cookies and oatmeal raisin cookies and chocolate cheesecake brownies and a few ice box "bar" cookies. I'm a regular baking crew all on my own!
My favorite of the cookies is the plain old everyday crisp-but-moist sugar cookies cut from big Christmas cookie cutters and all decorated with frosting and little candied - well - things. For the first time in the history of my blog, I'm going to share a recipe. (Geesh, the holidays have really gotten to me, haven't they?!) This is the never fail sour cream sugar cookie recipe that everybody loves. Give it a try!
Tristan's Sugar Cookies
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar
  1. Cream together 1 1/2 cups white sugar, butter or margarine, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and eggs. Add sour cream.
  2. Mix together 5 cups flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, baking powder and baking soda. Gradually add to the egg-sugar mixture.
  3. Cover and chill dough for 1 hour.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  5. Roll out on lightly floured surface to 1/4 inch thick. Cut out cookies. Bake on lightly greased cookie sheet for 10 - 12 minutes.
  6. To Make Frosting: In small bowl, with mixer at medium speed, beat together the softened cream cheese and evaporated milk until smooth. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/8 teaspoon salt and confectioners' sugar. Beat until well blended. Color as desired and frost cooled cookies.
Take care not to overwork the dough. Just mix it, chill it and roll it. Don't torture it. Make sure to cool on a rack. Be sure to wait until they're cooled completely before frosting.
Get ready for a host of Christmas hallelujah's after you've served them!


Doesn't this dear child look like she's going to be serious trouble?! She's just a mug shot waiting to happen.
Actually, it's a boy. I have no idea why he's dressed like that. He's just a mug shot waiting to happen.
What do you want to find in your stocking Christmas morning?

I really think I should have this 24k gold sleigh which once belonged to Ludwig, the mad king of Bavaria. And it would add to the holiday decor while it was waiting to be given to me!

Oh - this little swan pedestal flower pedestal would be nice, too. And not quite so much a commitment to the insurance company.
Who am I kidding. I'd be glad to have just the floral arrangement - even in a margarine tub.
Now that we've discovered the joy of Blu-Ray on a big plasma HD screen, I'm sure the very next step will be a small little unpretentious home theatre, much like this one. Nothing fancy, mind you. Simplicity is the mantra of my life.

Aren't these charming. I think they look so smart and modern in this photo. Of course, in my house, I think they would look like I hadn't cleaned up after a craft project. Still, they're pretty cool. You can see more such simple designs at Spidatter.

I'm such a huge fan of color, I can't imagine having an all-white house. But, if I did, I would hope it would look just like this. I would like it even more if it had a view of the Eiffel Tower - but I'd settle for just the design.

Hi-diddle-dee-dee
An actor's life for me
A high silk hat and a silver cane
A watch of gold with a diamond chain

Hi-diddle-dee-day
An actor's life is gay
It's great to be a celebrity
An actor's life for me

Hi-diddle-dee-dum
An actor's life is fun

Hi-diddle-dee-dee
An actor's life for me
A wax mustache and a beaver coat
A pony cart and a billy goat

Hi-diddle-dee-dum
An actor's life is fun
You wear your hair in a pompadour
You ride around in a coach and four
You stop and buy out a candy store
An actor's life for me!
Björk thought she was so original. Anna Pavlova wore her swan (Jack) long ago!

Some things are just too chic to be real, aren't they?! A Dior fantasy gown ...

I'm going to leave you with this poem which perfectly expresses my feelings about being a dog!

18 REASONS I WANT TO BE A DOG

1. I’d be fuzzy, like the essence of love.

2. I’d wag my tail and be at one with the universe. I’ve always wanted a tail.

3. My nose would be like a button on a sock puppet.

4. I’d know what I wanted, when I wanted it. I ‘d bark until I got it.

5. I wouldn’t have germ phobias. I’d welcome touch.

6. My tongue would be glorious.

7. I’d snarl and let the world know it.

8. I’d be enraptured much of the time.

9. I’d sleep whenever I wanted, as much as I wanted.

10. I’d keep strangers away. I’d be permitted to hate.

11. I wouldn’t have to know table manners.

12. I wouldn’t care what was on TV.

13. My hands and feet would be more alike. I’d crawl again

like I did before everything happened.

14. I’d amaze humans for my differences and similarities.

15. I’d love the thrill of the chase.

16. My dreams would not be overpopulated with strange cities

and people who like me though they do not exist

and I wouldn’t miss my bus stop, pulling and pulling the chord in fear,

or care if I were naked on 5th Avenue.

17. I’d belong to the earth. I’d roll in it,

luxuriate in it, eat its bitter wood,

offer it my piss and shit and puke up its grass

and the earth would give back, give back,

it would know me as no clothed human could.

18. I’d ride in the car with my head out the window

and the wind would lick my face.

Copyright 2010 by Jon P. Bloch


Thanks for stopping by for coffee and a chat! Now - go make something beautiful!

♥´¨)
¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan


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