Chloe's 11th Birthday, Birdeye

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

This is the Mother's Day card Chloe made
for me, it's the sweetest thing ever!
Cathy Helton can make some cakes!  This is Biscuit and
he tasted delicious! 

His head, this looks just like him!
Anne Quessenberry passed away the week
before we went to Brooklyn, we couldn't change
all of our reservations without paying twice for
the trip!  So we went on to Bechtel's wedding, this
is Jackie's cousin John Dalton who stayed over
the next week at his mother's house next door.
Here he is teasing Chloe about gettin in her secret
money jar.....she's not impressed!
Chloe's very proud of the fact that she
invented a secret place to save her money...
it is in two shoe boxes, a giant pickle jar and
in a secret place.....
Chloe loves opening gifts....
Happy Birthday
I had to take this photo of my cookbook case...needless to
say, I don't need any more cook books!
Monday, May 14, 2012

Another singing of the song.....:)

Here's my precious mom, lighting the candles on this slim
cake only to have her fingers nearly burned...meanwhile
the boys, Matt and Jackie are out on the terrace talking...

I just love a Baskin Robin's cake....love it...delicious

Have ya'll heard me mention that we have this mix ready
for adoption....Junior, 10 weeks and ready for a forever home...
And he's on the rug mom gave me for my birthday...I
absolutely love this rug and don't intend to have a humane
society ruin it out here....but he does look gooooddd on it! :)
Today is Chloe's 11th birthday, I cannot believe it!  What a gift she is.  We were still unpacking our bags today but we had a fabulous party with Mazzio's and a fabulous cake made by Cathy Helton.  Chloe asked that I surprise her with a cake design and all I could come up with was Biscuit.  So Cathy made this cake and it was great and delicious!  Chloe had a great time opening her gifts.  She got some cash this year and she brought out her secret hiding place for her savings which is two shoe boxes with a jumbo pickle jar inside.  Now we all know where to get her stash, except I won't tell where she keeps the boxes....:)  Happy Birthday Chloe, you are fun, so so kind hearted and a joy to be around!

And we celebrated another partee this past weekend in Little Rock where mom and Gary had a skeet shoot in Little Rock at Blue Rock.  They brought their RV over and we had a great time opening presents from matt and meme which included a swimsuit, flip flops, outfits, swim bag, towels etc etc...she's set up for the summer! And a shout out to them for celebrating her birthday a week late and we had a late Mother's Day partee too to mix with it!

Oreo, Birdeye

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Oreo is darling, he weighs about 20 lbs.

He's submissive and is a very quiet dog

He's house trained and great with other dogs, cat and kids
Friday, May 18, 2012

Oreo is 1-1/2 years old and was adopted last May.  He showed up at the vet clinic on our front porch today....he's house trained, great with kids and super quiet, he's not like the pointer we have who is very active.

He does have heartworms but is on Advantage Multi so I hope in a few months he'll be negative.  He's neutered and adorable with kids.  Chloe has had a great time with him.  He's very laid back and good with cats too.

Spay/neuter people!  Have I said that before?  :)

Magic, Birdeye

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Here's our latest Birdeye stray...Chloe named her "Magic"
which totally cracks me up.  Harmon thinks she's 3 ish,
heartworm negative, skinny, skinny, leash trained and
good with Chloe so far....spay/neuter people come on!
Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Well, I thought pulling Junior Pretzel Smith outta a farm implement was my duty recently but this purebred came up to the fence on Sunday as we were unpacking from the Brooklyn trip. She's 3ish, a German Shorthair Pointer, heartworm negative and leash trained and a great dog....I hope to be sending her up to Maine soon.  She's super needy, likes to be petted and not left alone.  She's got a good personality other than barking in her dog pen.

I'm preaching to the choir, but spay/neuter people!  It's a small investment in the dog or cat but it pays off down the line when you have to find homes for a litter of 8-12 puppies every 6 months....and in just 6 years, along with her offspring, an unspayed female dog can theoretically produce 67,000 puppies...that's NOT a typo, 67,000.....and a male cat can sire 2,500 kittens in just one year....that's staggering!  Wouldn't it be something if there was a spay/neuter clinic to come once a month to do free spays/neuters no questions asked to anyone who needed that stray cat or dog fixed?  That's something to hope for! :)

iCi, Brooklyn

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

This is our charming apartment in Brooklyn
(it was awesome!)

Jackie and I walked the High Line between West 20th and
West 30th.  It just opened and we loved seeing all the kids
and visitors on it, it was about 10 am and it got busier later
on.  There was also a greenway on it where kids had their
shoes off enjoying the grass.

The original railroad is seen off and on throughout the trail

I loved seeing different varieties of flowers along the trail

After lunch with my youth minister from
Oklahoma City, we went to Soho and I googled
thrift stores and besides taking us to Melet Merchantile,
which is a vintage showroom by appointment only (so
you can imagine what it was like to walk through it noticing
price tags of $200 plus and then a beautiful woman working
there asked us if we had an appointment and we quickly left)
So my phone took us to Cure, a mile north from Melet.
When we got there I was pleasantly surprised that all proceeds
go to cure diabetes.  And I found a great jacket there....Joy
Shepherd has turned me on to thrift stores and Aimee McMillin
and I found a great thrift store just blocks from our Brooklyn
apartment.  She's also a big thrift store buyer, how fun!

This was taken on Friday night at a bar that Bechtel reserved
so we could all get together....here's Heather & Mitch Light,
Mark Bechtel & fiance Elana, Aimee & Zack McMillin,
Amy & Bill Trocchi and Jackie

Mitch took this classic photo...that's Bechtel bending over
to avoid taking another photo...Amy made this photo her
Facebook profile pic, cracks me up!
Thursday, May 10, 2012

WOW!  Amy Trocchi booked a fabulous apartment for the weekend on Lafayette in Brooklyn.  We shared the apartment with the Trocchi's and McMillin's for Bechtel's wedding.  It was great as was this Mediterranean restaurant around the corner.  We had reservations and met another Vanderbilt classmate there for dinner.  The restaurant touts itself as "fresh, seasonal, local" and if you read my blog, you know that is what I am all about.  Here's an excerpt from their website under the label, "inspiration":

At iCi, we are convinced that the best-tasting food is naturally grown and harvested in ways that are ecologically sound and socially responsible by people who are taking care of the land for future generations. 
We develop menus that change with the seasons, using exclusively fresh, naturally grown ingredients of the highest quality from the local farms and markets. These ingredients are put together in a way that does not mask the natural flavors or strip the food of its nutritional value.
iCi's seasonal menu of modern classics is complemented by a list of rare and unusual wines from small, natural, dedicated, and often fanatical growers who work their vines and make their wines with honesty, passion and humor. Our wines are made with the least intervention possible: no selected yeast, no enzymes or other additives, low yields, low to no sulfites. 
This philosophy of winemaking differentiates these wines from the standard, monolithic tastes of many wines, and offers us what wines should: mystery, romance, and adventure.
A truly natural restaurant that emphasizes quality over spectacle, iCi brings people back to the fundamentals of good casual organic dining.

We had an appetizer orderer in our group and that was Clay Hensley, who ordered the Artisanal Cheeses $8 and fresh made Ricotta Bruschetta that featured duck prosciutto $11 as well as (yes there were three appetizers) Chicken Liver Mousse $8 with shallots and grilled bread.  I had a taste of the duck and mousse and they were delicious even though our table was overwhelmed with dishes.  For dinner, Aimee and I both toyed with the house made Ricotta Cavatelli with greenmarket vegetables $24.  I ordered this and loved the homemade pasta and lightness of the dish.  I wouldn't dare order a side but I really wanted to try the Marinated Beets $8 with goat cheese, dill and horseradish and the Grilled Scallions $8 with dressing and breadcrumbs.  I believe it was Clay and Zack that ordered these and I got to try a beet and it was outstanding.  I had a delicious cup of coffee here (and I totally took a photo of because of the cup size, I am a total dork for doing so) for dessert.

I really loved iCi.  It was a great catching up with Zack and Aimee and meeting Clay Hensley and his fiance Joyce, who swam for Indiana University.  Great food, great conversation and a green restaurant all make for a wonderful evening.  You'll have to go to iCi when you're in Brooklyn.  We loved it!

iCi, 246 Dekalb, Brooklyn, NY 718-789-2778 http://www.icirestaurant.com/  Check out their awesome website!

Cycling in Brooklyn and New York City

The Brooklyn Bridge, I have no idea why Blogger
uploaded these pictures in this order...

I wish the stranger photographer with my camera had asked
me to pull my shorts and tshirt down...just sayin...

This is a shot of the middle of the bridge, notice the crowd
grows at 10 am

The OTHER side of the bridge, into Manhattan

Headin to the Hudson River Park Trail

This was a market just a block from the Hudson River Trail
filled with children and parents...

This was the first part of the Hudson River Trail...
it's totally away from traffic except for some turn in's to
the piers along the way...

This is one of several families we saw on the trail and
in the farmers market....fun times! Chloe would love this!

This was a tennis court we went by...and yes, I took
most of these on the bike while riding, it was kinda
questionable at one point, but for being on the bike
from 10 am to 4 pm, it wasn't that bad and it was a
great workout, just sayin....

This was a chanting company of soldiers that ran by
on the Hudson Park Trail

This trapeze school reminded me of one of my favorite
episodes of Sex in the City

This building was on the edge of Central Park, home
to Time Warner...I didn't see a celebrity but we weren't
there for long.....

This is the lunch place we "happened upon", it had calorie
counts on the menu, very interesting and it was delish!

I believe this is Jackie telling me that it's safe to ride in
traffic with cabs because of the green lane to his right,
and well, he was right. Totally safe, yes, I was
worried that I did not have my big, orange flag on my
cruiser, just sayin....

We realized after a few blocks down the "designated"
bike lane on Broadway, that there was this long, long
flea market for many blocks and the closer we got to
Sean P. Diddy Combs on the Times Square Billboard, we
were ready to make a right and get back on the Hudson
River Park Trail and we did!

This is another view I took from behind Jackie when we
were at a stop sign...have I said it yet that 99% of my
photos were on my bike behind Jackie??

This was on the other side of Times Square just before
we headed back to the easy, Hudson River Park Trail

This was going on as we passed by, looks like Yoga..
good for them...what a fabulous, healthy choice!

Another close picture of Times Square

This is the one of the new towers being built...it sits on the
World Trade Center spot...the memorial is just blocks away

This is Trinity Church that withstood the 911 disaster
with little damage.  It's an Episcopalian church built in
1697, that's not a typo, 1697 is correct.  It was beautiful!

I cannot make tacky comments but I want to about the
GREED ON WALL STREET... I hope Chloe's college
money will be there for her 2019 freshman year...

Holy Smokes, my camera taking photos....


This was a dog park near the Manhattan Bridge on the
East River Park Trail....

Jackie asked me to stop and take a photo of this
First Chinese Presbyterian Church in Chinatown 

This is the bike trail over the Manhattan Bridge...an
easy ride back over to Brooklyn

This was Jackie's bike he used to cycle our 6 hour trip

My rented cruiser bike.....it was fabulous!  And from
Bike Brooklyn Bike Shop...who gave us GREAT
insight and tips. We loved ya'll!

This joker was in Brooklyn just blocks from our
FABULOUS RENTAL that was so affordable it
should have been a crime...I took this for Kyle....

The view of our fabulous street in Brooklyn....

This was the end of our Brooklyn trip
on the steps of our rental....

This is the view heading over the Brooklyn Bridge
at 10 am...

This was some sort of wedding coming across
from Manhattan to Brooklyn, we cracked up, the
lanes were not populated like later...BTW

The closer we got to the middle, the bigger the crowd
grew and at 10 am it looked like this crowd of people
were raising funds for a cause there.... I do love that...

This was a view from the Brooklyn Bridge over to the
Manhattan Bridge on our way to NYC...it was a great
photo and little did I know we would be in NYC all day!
The bike lanes were easy and absolutely fabulous and totally safe.
Have I mentioned yet that we had NO HELMETS ON?
They aren't required for adults in New York but kids under 13 they
are required.  Helmets are not required in Arkansas either
but they should be and in Cross County you shouldn't EVER RIDE EVER
without a helmet AND a flag....we have to get our drivers
educated that cyclists (and motorcycles) are on the road!
Saturday, May 12, 2012

Jackie and I were in New York for a wedding of one of his roommates from Vanderbilt.  Mark Bechtel and Elana tied the knot at the Brooklyn Historical Society.  They live in Brooklyn, which was absolutely awesome.  We toured around the city and had great times at many restaurants and stayed at a fabulous apartment on Lafayette Street. (More details to come)  The rental had a bicycle that we took over to the city.  I rented a cruiser from Bike Brooklyn and we spent 6 hours over in the city.  MapMyRide said we biked 23 miles.  It didn't feel that long because we were seeing the city.  What a great way to see the city and use the bike lanes all over town!  I took over 100 photos from the weekend and most of the photos I've shared on this post are from the bicycle behind Jackie.  Enjoy and get a bike, ya'll! :)