Sunday, October 31, 2010

Amuck, Amuck, Amuck

Here at the Garlick Press, we are steeped in great traditions... and Halloween is no exception.  

Halloween sugar cookies are first on the agenda for the day.  The teenager likes to have lots of sprinkles with his frosting.  Evenings are spent watching classic films like Hocus Pocus, "I put a spell on you, and now you're mine." We can probably quote half of that movie.

barfing pumpkin is always a classic jack-o-lantern choice at our house.

Let me hear three cheers for The Saints who are playing the Pittsburgh Steelers on Halloween night.  

Luscious Halloween stew has been brewing all day filling the house with that rich smell of roasting goodness.  You should taste these freshly baked cheese scones for stew dipping.

Oh no, is that Cat Man Boo and Wanda Witch staring at you.

Wicked Witchie-Poo's best features are her stringy hair and lop-sided sagging chest.  Oh what an absolute riot Jill and I had making her a few years ago.  .

  Every now and then I like to create something new to add to our traditions.  This quilt hangs in the usual quilt spot to hauntingly say Halloween Hellos to all that enter.  

Excuse me...I'm Mr Beer Can Chicken.  I've been smoking on the Cuban (smoker) for dinner tonight on All Hallow's Eve.  Beer can chicken (minus the beer and actually cooked on a Dr. Pepper can with apple juice inside) is so tasty and tender.  Thank you Dean for bringing the Cuban home to expand our Sunday dinner menus so deliciously.  

 Newest tradition this year...our granddaughter Olivia, trick-or-treating as a little green dinosaur.  She is positively the sweetest part of the new Halloween traditions at the Garlick Press.   

HALLOWEEN! At the end of a delightful Halloween weekend a new treat...Creamy Pumpkin Custard Pie.  Will this pie be on the Pie Night Menu this year...stay tuned!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


The view from my window in between the first snowstorms of the season.

Since the first snow is here, happily the ski season will be close behind.  So here are the top 10 ways to prepare.

#10 Go to the closest McDonalds, stand in the longest line, order a     
       cheeseburger and insist on paying $10.00 for it.

#9   Buy a new pair of gloves and immediately throw one away.

#8   Ask your favorite grocery store if you can pay $90 to sit in the walk-in 
       freezer for an hour. Afterwards, burn a $50 bill to warm up.

#7  Fill a blender with ice, hit the pulse button and let the spray blast your 
      face. Leave the ice on your face until it melts. 

#6  Go to your closet, pile on 10 of your warmest, puffiest layers, and then go 

#5  Soak your gloves in water and store them in the freezer.

#4  Clip a lift ticket to the zipper of your jacket, get on a motorcycle and ride 
      fast enough to make the ticket lacerate your face.

#3  If you wear glasses or contact lenses, start wearing them with glue 
      smeared on the surface.

#2  Buy a pair of army boots that are 3 sizes too small for you, line them with 
      crushed ice, and then tighten a C-clamp around your toes. 

#1  Throw away a hundred dollar bill - RIGHT NOW!

The mountains are calling...

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Ready Or Not

There is something in the air...can you feel it?  Most everyone is talking about it... although not all are thrilled!  The forecast is calling for SNOW tomorrow. Dun dun dunnnnnn!

Ready or comes winter! 

It seemed that Fall had a tight grip on our little valley and just wouldn't let go.    

We have been soaking up the last colors of fall before they fade away into the many months of cold ahead.

The burning bushes in our front yard have exploded into crimson flames.

If you were waiting to get out and enjoy the Fall are most likely too late.  For I can hear Old Man Winter wildly throwing raindrops at my window and my toes are already cold!

Friday, October 22, 2010

A Fond Farmers Farewell

I can hardly believe it, but it's time to say farewell to our local little Farmer's market.  I don't know what we are going to do with our Saturday mornings...well until ski season...then we'll be busy!

 The winter vegetables have all been harvested and are tucked away for yummy soups and stews to warm the cold months ahead.

The Garlick Press is especially fond of this farmer's garlic selection.  He has varieties like Italian garlic and Red garlic.  

And sadly...there will be no more "Hip Mama's Lemonade"...blended with sweet cantalope or watermelon or freshly squeezed lime...with a lovely mint leaf!

And dear Flower Lady who makes a fresh bouquet of flowers special for us each week.  Early in the market season she asked us what we were doing with the bouquet we bought each week...we told her they were for our Jocie girl at the's getting easier to answer those questions.  Now she anticipates our arrival and gathers her favorites into a bundle that we'll love.  We will miss Flower Lady this winter...she is so colorful standing barefoot around her buckets of gorgeous blooms. 

 Papa looks like he is dodging the paparazzi or something.

Vibrant wool yarns spun from freshly shorn sheep woollen, makes me wish I was a I need another addictive hobby...somebody stop me!

And just like that it's time to put the Farmer's Market to bed...sweet dreams...we will be dreaming of your Spring Peas and Tender Lettuce until next year.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Olivia Says So

This past lovely October weekend, things were discussed...important things...and decisions were made.  This grandmother needed a name, and not just any name, a name that will roll off this baby's tongue like a warm bottle of Similac.  Olivia came to visit for the weekend so luckily we had plenty of moments to soak up her pinkness.

We have been trying on several different names to see how they Mimi. That Grandpa guy informed us that in the Maori language it was not such a pleasant thing. The lawyer girl insists I embrace the name Damma...too bad you are in LA, Lawyer Girl and can't argue your case for that name.  Friends with an Italian background suggested Nona Lisa...think Mona Lisa...cute, but Mona Lisa looks way too serious all the time.  Since I love the movie "Gone With The Wind", Olivia and I discussed the name Mammy...

"I said I is gwoin' to Atlanta wit you and gwoin' I is."

"Yes'm you is, you's gonna eat every mouthful of this"

"I is told ya and told ya that you can always tell a lady by the way she eats in front of folks like a bird and I ain't aimin' for you to go to Mr. John Wilkes and eat like a field hand and gobble like a hog!"

I could go on for hours with quotes from this movie.

Oh Olivia likes that one! 

But still not quite right...the name needs to be just perfect!  Olivia and I sit down for a sofa discussion...she has a plethora of fabulous fashionable outfits...this one came all the way from the fashion capital of the world...New York City!

Baby girl is not afraid to dress it down seen in her favorite pair of jeans.  

The Momma Girl (Cass) thinks the name Grandma Lisa is just fine.

The man we keep referring to as Grandpa, suddenly informed us one day that he would no longer answer to the title Grandpa...he will officially go by Papa.  Not one of us argued with Papa on that one. 

Sadly, the weekend was coming to a close and over breakfast Olivia and I were discussing what a delightful time we had together. How fun it was to pick out her first pumpkin.  And then it just came out "Nana loves you Olivia."  Papa (the guy formerly called Grandpa) informs everyone that Nana means grandmother in Maori.  Papa should know, he spent 2 years in New Zealand a while back. Papa approves!

Olivia breaks from her breakfast bottle to give me a giant pink smile. 

Nana it is...Olivia said so. 

Oh, Nana loves Olivia, from her delicate soft fingers...

to her cute as a button, belly button...

all the way down to her pudgy pink piggies!

And for those critics who don't like the choice Olivia and I made...well fiddle-dee-dee as Rhett Butler says

"Frankly my dear... I don't give a bleep (tiny ears are present)!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Details of Her Day

Last Friday was the 3rd annual Jiggy Day Celebration.  Faced with a lifetime of October 8th's without her sister, Cass first envisioned this day as a celebration instead of a heartbreak.  She wanted her future children to one day be able to love and appreciate Aunt Jiggy and her legacy.

Jiggy Day generally begins early at Angie's Restaurant for breakfast with the girlfriends.  This year we had a couple girlfriends missing who weren't allowed to skip cheer practice on game day (we missed you Lindsay and Maren).  Dean also had to be out of town on business...very sad for us all.

All kinds of nonsense generally ensues when these girls all gather together.  They are such a treat to be around.  They can always make me smile.  

I can't imagine being their innocent young age and being plunged into such a heartbreaking circumstance losing a close friend.  I adore each one of them and the unique relationship we have developed.  I watch them closely, constantly, and love them deeply for what they have had to experience.  They amaze me!

This is Sir Francis Bacon (which also happens to be the name of an awesome set of powder skis made by Line). We had a great time making him out of balls of butter scooped off our French Toast. 

We never discuss what we will wear on this day, but we always end up in our Jiggy t-shirts.  The girls sometimes call me Mama G and I wear the name proudly!

I like to give them something fun and spontaneous to celebrate the day.  Last year it was a giant container of animal crackers, because they always left me animal crackers hidden all over my house.  This year it was a jar of Laffy Taffy to remind them of all the times she made them laugh.  

This was Olivia's first Jiggy Day and we couldn't wait to share it with her.  Cass prepared Olivia with stories about her Aunt Jiggy.  They started off their day with candy for breakfast...well just Cass.  Dione celebrated in Los Angeles with Cini Minis for breakfast and in Philadelphia Dean drank 2 Diet Cokes for breakfast in her honor.

On Jiggy Day, red shoes are a must!  Together, Olivia and I proudly show off our red shoes.

The cemetery is so peaceful for our family, it is a vital part of our healing... and has been since the beginning.  Cass was eager to bring Olivia to the cemetery for the first time and explain to her baby girl how our family feels about this special place.   

Olivia brought a beautiful bouquet of yellow flowers to honor her Aunt Jiggy.
We never know what items will show up at the cemetery or who brings them... from beautiful flowers and cupcakes to Diet Cokes and Butterfinger candy bars!  And check out those balloons you can almost see them from space!  We delight in all of it...right down to the Little Mermaid Pez dispenser.

At the end of the day I take one more trip to the sit and absorb the details of the day.  The crows fill the air with their piercing song. The sky has been cloudy and rainy most of the day.  As I start to drive away, the skies part and a streaming ray of light pierces through the gray clouds illuminating the ground below.  That familiar sting resonates behind my eyes, for I know she is near.