Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy Reading in the New Year!

I started 2013 in Idaho with three of my nieces and nephews, so it is fitting that the chapter book of this year end the same way.

Much could be said, and may, eventually about this year...

But for now,
from our reading pile to yours,

May your 2014 be filled snuggles, adventures, excitement, good books, library trips, arts and crafts, travels, and quality time with friends and family.

Happy New Year from Auntie Nettie's Attic and her trunks full of books, yarn, and beloved nieces and nephews.


Sunday, December 29, 2013

Winter Wonderland

Cache Valley, Logan, Utah ~ Sunday, 12/29/13, 9:30 am ~ 0 degrees

Just a bit of Valley fog and Hoarfrost

I was wearing tights, a dress, slip-on shoes, and a light fleece with no gloves-not realizing how cold it was! Totally not dressed correctly and in a hurry to go and pick up a great aunt for Church. 

I haven't been in the Valley in winter since 1980. I forgot how cold it can be. It was also eerily beautiful, like a scene out of the new movie Frozen.

What I wished I had captured on "film" was the herd of horses in the next pasture. Out of the mists, I heard the thunder of hooves and turned to see first a black colt followed by pinto, bay, dun, and dappled mares and geldings slipping through the icy fog and twinkling trees in their meadowy enclosure. What a magical moment out of time.


Friday, December 27, 2013

Happy 46th Anniversary!

Some 46 odd years ago, two fresh faced kids took advantage of a short Christmas Navy leave, travelled West from the docks of Virginia to Utah, and got married in the land of the Utes snow. Then they travelled to sunny sands of southern Utah for their Dixie honeymoon. (We once asked why Dixie*... The "pause" for the answer was embarrassing to their teenaged kids--but we figured out ALL the whys ...later.)

Many many decades would pass and back to a Dixie-area they would fly again.
Somewhere along the way the crazy started.
They blame the kids and grandkids, but I have a feeling they were always crazy....
In love with each other, despite it all.

(But they wonder where we get it from?)

Happy Anniversary, you crazy kids!


Art by Ms. T-- for their 40th; US Navy "glamour" shot; Wedding dress by Grandma Ollie, studio shot and veil <I think and will probably be corrected as soon as Grandmary ever reads this.>

Grumpa and Drew c. Christmas 2013

Grandmary and some weirdo on the Cape in a rental c. October 2013

*not the name of the actual town, but the region

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Signs of vacation

These are the signs of vacation:

I need smore smores and smore zzzzzzzzz.

Photos: parents; target (2); michael's crafts

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

My Presence and My Presents

Traveling, stress, expense...,
How can you measure?
When the gifts are such as these?
Time passes in the blink of an eye
Or the swipe of the mouse.

Thanks to family for forwarding these to my in-box.

Their presence were my presents this week.

And soon I will reciprocate.

On the road again.

Miles to go before I sleep...

 For more than 4 hours at a time.


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Mother Nature's Christmas Present

More snow...just what I need the day before I fly....

What is the return policy on this gift? 

Via cellphone camera (old school)

The Xmas tree lot outside the local Starbuck's on the Upper West Side this afternoon.

Editor's note: Look at that! 

Please note: This post was drafted on the iTouch on the train when I was not connected to wi-fi! I am running out of non-blogging excuses.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Modern Era Mobile Test

Hey there,

This is a test of blogging from my iTouch.
I am running out of time before I leave for vacation, so I am trying out this new fangled technology to see if it will let me try and manage to document my life on the run! 

Don't like the touchpad but it's better than nothing!

Wow, look at me finally catching up to 5 years ago!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

And the Rest is Cylon(s)

Apologies if you have come here for some of my normal babblings. It's that time of year when the time streams collide, I need to clone myself, all the projects are due, the Christmas to-do lists aren't shrinking, the end-of-year pushes, packing, and utter holiday madness coalesce into one cranky jam-packed just-push-through-to-survive  Nettie Zombie Drone mentality.

On top of that there are behind-the-scenes life issues being addressed, there are parties to bake for, there are neighbors TO LOATHE, and there is a) first a migraine-related bout of something, and b) NOW, a weeklong head-cold/sinus infection/flu thing to kick --- all before we fly in less than a week to climes that are colder than New York itself. I need another dose of The Doctor to head back in time, so I can better prepare. Or take yoga. Or again, CLONE myself.

Speaking of clones ... This year Grand Central decided to go and dress up like a frakkin' Cylon. I think to prove, once and for all, that the deus ex machina is going to get us. (That or the hordes of zombie commuters.)
It's good thing I have things to look forward to in Utah, Nevada, and Arizona, and Westchester, and then in the spring when HOPEFULLY, Mr. Simon can sing The Sounds of Silence to me.

Until then,
Blogging will be intermittent for the foreseeable.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Mother Nature is REALLY Mixed up!

c. Grumpa, December 8, 2013
 Dad reports SIX inches, church cancellations, the highways shutting down, etc.
You know it's serious when the Utah Mormons cancel church on a Sunday.
I think I better start praying for safe travels.

 I have a feeling I won't be wearing these and doing this when I visit in a few weeks.
 Or at least not in short sleeves.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Quote of the Day: Nelson Mandela

via the Twitters

"Death is...inevitable. 
When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, 
he can rest in peace."

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Photo of the Day: Mother Nature is Mixed up

c. Grumpa
This is a shot of the parents' house in St. George, UT yesterday morning. 
The desert of southern Utah, mind you.

Yesterday in NYC it was in the 50s.
Today, supposedly, it was in the 60s, foggy, and balmy. 
I never made it out of the office during the day, 
but I only wore my spring jacket on the commute.
Tomorrow it is to be also in the 50s.

Mother Nature is seriously mixed up!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

I Get By with a Little Advice from My Friend

"When you paint success pictures in your mind, you initiate an inner process whereby your attitudes, hopes, aspirations, and enthusiasm are elevated in response to an image of a more promising future. Every person who aspires must first sell themselves hope, the promise of a better life."

- U.S. Andersen - 1917-1986, Author of The Magic In Your Mind

"You must constantly ask yourself these questions: Who am I around? What are they doing to me? What have they got me reading? What have they got me saying? Where do they have me going? What do they have me thinking? And most important, what do they have me becoming? Then ask yourself the big question: Is that okay? Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change." 

- Jim Rohn

Thanks lovey.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Photos of the Day: Crafty Ladies

 Left: Mine for her 
Right: Hers

Just a couple of quick photos to document some of the crafty touches now decorating Christine's "crib."

Left: two of the crocheted, appliqued stocking I made for her beloved (and now sadly, late) pooches.
Right: two of the lovely wreathes she made with just a few of the corks that she's picked up in her travels. Let me stress here, for the record, she did NOT drink all that wine by herself. It would have been a whole different type of gathering if she did.

I like having crafty friends. Now, if I could only find time for us to do more arty things. Christine is also quite a fine fine artist. Get those pencils out again, girl!

photos via iTouch

Monday, December 2, 2013

Photo of the Day: Tree Skirt

Don't like that old tree skirt? Don't worry. 
Your weird friend may think it's actually better as a skirt next to your tree.

Thanks to Ms. Christine for letting me hang out all Thanksgiving weekend, decorate, laugh, eat, sleep, etc.


Saturday, November 30, 2013

Holiday Repeats: Cooking with Christine

I can't wait to spend lots of time hanging out with Christine watching her create culinary magic. I also can't wait to get more material for my imaginary Food Network screenwriter. Nettie needs some inspiration. She's been not using that side of her brain enough lately. (Which reminds me, as I create this post for future airing, where is The Shushing Librarian? She's been altogether too quiet lately.)

Also, given recent experience Food Network host's recent on-air finger slicing on live t.v., this just cracks me up more. "That's not in the script! We're live. THIS is why we pre-tape and EDIT!"

You know you've watched too much food t.v. when, you imagine things happened this way:
TRANSCRIPT/Editor's notes:

Scene: Cape Cod Kitchen

(fade from title shot, bring down theme music, and cut into full shot of kitchen set-up)

"Welcome back to Cooking with Christine."

(Audience cheers and applauds, fade audio down and out, cue host)
(cut to 3/4 shot of host)

Host: "I'm your host, Christine, and I'm pleased to present the second installment of Cooking with Christine. Today we're going to show how to prepare Emeril Lagasse's Chile Pepper Lobster."

(cut to audience wide shot)

(Audience oooohs and aahhhhs)

(cut back to wide shot of host and guest at kitchen set-up)

Host: I'm very pleased to have a special guest, The Shushing Librarian, or as we call her, SL, who is here today to learn about this labor-intensive, yet delicious recipe.

(cue 3/4 shot of special guest)

SL: Hey there, great to be here. So, Christine, can you tell me what all is in this recipe?

(cut back to wide shot of host and guest, show kitchen tabletop with prep)

Host: Well, SL, the full recipe can be found on our web-site. We've made some exceptions. We completely cut the two kinds of onions, and we added some chopped shrimp.

SL: So, to recap, Chile Pepper Lobster over Saffron Linguine usually contains the following:

(cue close shots of prepped ingredients as they are read off the notes/split screen with ingredient lists)


1 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons peeled, seeded, and chopped Italian plum tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped onions
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
4 turns freshly ground black pepper
4 servings Saffron Linguine
1 pound cooked lobster meat (from 3 live 1-pound lobsters), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup coarsely grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped green onions

(cut back to high shots of stovetop)

Host: That's right. First you, combine the oil, tomatoes, onions, cilantro, garlic, chili powder, red pepper, cumin, salt, and black pepper in a large skillet over medium heat and cook for 6 minutes. As you can see, we already started this process.

SL to audience: I wish you could be as close to this as I am. It smells delicious!

(cut to audience shot)

(audience applauds lightly and laughs)

(cut to long shots down countertop)

Host: SL, since I see you have an injured arm, hopefully you have a helpers on hand to chop the cilantro and seafood, so you can add the other ingredients and make sure they don't burn.

(cut back to host and SL 3/4 shot)

SL: I'm a better eater than chopper, so I'm glad you have helpers. What's next?
Host: Once the onions and tomatoes are ready, turn off the heat and allow the mixture to steep for 10 or 15 minutes.
SL: So during this, we should also be preparing our pasta?
Host: That's right. You should prepare the Saffron Linguine, and when finished, cover to keep warm.
SL to audience: Isn't the magic of television great?

(audience laughs knowingly, yet hungrily)
(cut to 3/4 shot of host)

Host: That's right. I'm so happy to have my kitchen helpers. They are working like "house elves" to prepare the seafood; prepping our pre-cooked, cleaned, and pre-shelled shrimp and lobster. No snacking now guys.

(Cut to shots of kitchen crew:
Ed note: Crop to tight shots of kitchen crew, no one needs to see them grimacing!)

(back to the wide shot of host and guest)

SL: Whoops! Things are getting hot in here!
Host: What's a little heat in the kitchen? Let's just turn the heat back up ON THE SKILLET, to high. When the mixture bubbles, add the seafood and stir.

(cut to overhead shots of skillet)

SL: I was going to grab a piece of shrimp, but it all got in the skillet! I guess I have to wait.
Host: No worries. It's almost ready. Continue cooking the sauce, shaking the skillet, for 3 minutes, and then remove from the heat.

(cut back to wide shot of host, guest, and table top)

SL: That looks and smells incredible! I could dive right in. I see in my notes that you varied the recipe from the original at this point.
Host: That's right. Usually, you divide the pasta into bowls and put the sauce on top. I think adding the pasta directly to the sauce adds flavor to the pasta and a new dimension to the sauce.
SL: Thank goodness for more television magic. This bowl just appeared in front of me, and the Parmesan is already melted into yummy goodness. Can I dive in?
Host: Go ahead. Let me just tell the audience that this usually serves about 4-6 as a main course. Many thanks to Emeril for letting me adapt the recipe and for my Kitchen Crew. I really couldn't do this without them. How's the pasta SL?

(cut to 3/4 shot of SL)

SL: (Muffled slurping, while nodding appreciatively as mouth is full, hand gesture)

(cut back to tight shot of host)

Host: Well, I just got the thumbs up from SL. I'm Christine, and this has been another episode of Cooking with Christine. Thanks for tuning in. I'm just going to .... try ... a ....little bit of this sauce.
(Host forgoes pretty prepared bowl of pasta and uses fingers to get every last bit of sauce out of skillet.)
(audience applause grows)
(Theme music fades up. Credits scroll over long shots of host and guest licking bowls and skillets)

The End.

Parts 1 and 2 originally "aired" in November 2011