Sunday, November 29, 2009


We began with setting the table. Our wedding china, wedding crystal, and silver that all Southern Belles must have and use at major meals. FYI pictures are taken by my Palm. And as we know they are not as good as with a real camera. More silver, china, and crystal A year after we married we found out the china pattern was discontinued. We have never broken a thing, knock wood. That is good since it can not be replaced. Crystal was made behind the Iron Curtain, some stores would sell it, but wouldn't display it. Marty made the ruby plate in the left corner.

Marty is making yeast rolls for dinner.

He is cutting out the rolls and they will rise one more time.

Food is finally on the table. Did you know when you brine a turkey it takes longer to cook? Neither did we. Hot rolls, cranberry salad, turkey, corn pudding, hard dressing and soft dressing, AWFUL green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, giblet gravy, cranberry jelly. Not the huge feast we sometimes have, but a huge amount of food. Oh and a lovely wine.
Many calls from family and friends around the country.

Still talking.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Wednesday I had 9 weddings. That really isn't a big rush except 7 of them showed up after 3:00. I was there until 5:00. The building closes at 4:30. Remember they have to be punched in by 4:00. When they come that late it is hard to do the weddings nicely. I just want to get them done and move to the next one. But I do try do do a good job. And I think they all feel special after the wedding.

Weddings 5 and 6 were in the Coast Guard and were friends. One of the brides was only 18 and he was 19. So young, I can only hope that it lasts.

Couple 8, the groom was from France. His parents were here from France for the wedding. The bride had a lovely taffeta dress and a bouquet of orchids, calla lilies, and fiddle head ferns. He had a boutonniere of small orchids, they looked liked tiny cateleyas. Lots of family at the wedding. One of his brothers thought our backdrop was ugly, and made some very rude disparaging remarks. My American heritage came rushing up and I carefully explained to him and everyone else: the backdrop is a very expensive piece of art duplicating the Double Wedding Ring Quilt Pattern from the early 1800's. Hey, it really is! Don't mess with a Mountain Woman you snippy French men.

My last wedding (couple 9) was so great. I looked at the guests/witnesses. I had just married two of them. They were wedding couple 8 and their friends. Couple 8 was about 19 years old. Wedding couple 9 was older. They were in their 50's. The bride was in long ecru lace dress. He was in a fancy shirt and dress slacks. He had his own vows to say to her. Very sweet, very personal, very touching. First he asked God to bless their union. Then he talked about her importance to him. It boiled down to she is his guardian angel. She is there when he needs her. Very sweet. After the wedding he wanted to give couple 8 and friends money for being their witnesses. They all refused the money. They said being at the wedding was too important to take money. It was a sweet moment. Young kids refusing money out of sentiment. I loved it.


I have lots to share and it's way too much for one blog. Plus this is a really busy weekend. I did 9 weddings yesterday afternoon, today lots of cooking going on. Tomorrow we put up the tree and decorate the house for Christmas. Saturday and Sunday we begin Open Studios, we are number one on the list and the map.

I will write about the weddings sometime soon. And I am taking pictures today of the great meal.

Open studios, maybe pictures of the demos.

Stayed tuned.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


And you wonder, how do you do 1/4 wedding? Was there a runner, did someone say I don't? I do a lot of 1/4 I just haven't called them that before. This is when I go out for the couple and then I start asking questions, is this your name, do you have rings, is everyone here? And for an answer I get a stare. They need an interpreter. No one really speaks English. The clerk should figure that out and not give the couple to me. Oh well.

There were more weddings than we have been doing lately. The first one was just beautiful. Everyone was in traditional Indian dress, including the groom. He had on a light red tunic, matching slacks with sandals. The bride hands were hennaed, her sari was red with heavy gold threads running through it. She even had part of the sari pulled up over her hair. And of course a zillion dollars worth of gold and diamond bracelets. This was a love match and not thank goodness an arranged wedding.

One weird one as always. This was a couple in their late 30s, (so not a forced teenage wedding). The groom is in a tux, she has on a lovely white dress with a black tulle underskirt. Lots of family. We get in the room and I am getting bad vibes. Great coolness between the couple. And then she vanished from the room. I asked where she was, and they said she left something in the car. She was gone 10 minutes. I was ticked because I had others to marry and also worried she wasn't coming back. They did marry, but no eye contact, little touching. Cold.

The others were fun, all were dressed up in suits and lovely dresses. One bride had a rich brown dress with material that looked like flower petals all over it. Just lovely. One couple was in their early 60's and so so in love. He had on a good looking suit and she had on a creamy pant outfit. She glowed with happiness and even though she was the oldest bride, she was by far the most beautiful.

But the best one made me tear up. Lovely couple, she in a gorgeous white taffeta dress and a bouquet, he was in a silk suit and a boutonniere. They had their own vows. He had written a beautiful poem telling her that she is his light. She lights his way through the tough times. Her vows were funny and sweet. She promised to handle changing her oil, she would drink beer with him when his team lost, and she would serve beer to him and his friends when the team won. And then she told sweet nothings to him.

It was a fun day. Five of the weddings came after 3:00, so it felt more rushed than it was. Wednesday we are expecting a crowd. The county is closed for Thanksgiving and on Friday. We shall see.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


This is why our marriage has lasted 42 and counting years. I hate, hate to go to the grocery. Marty seems to really enjoy it. Doesn't that work out well?

Today we sat down and planned Thanksgiving dinner. We pulled out recipes and checked to see if we had all ingredients. And we made our list.

Marty was going to pick up the glass he made yesterday. He said he would hit the grocery on the way home, unless I wanted to go. Hell no I didn't want to go. He shopped, I napped. Seems like a perfect Sunday afternoon.

And why did I need a nap you ask? The last couple of nights I have had very little sleep and ended up spending the night in the recliner. Someone takes ALL the cover and my pillows, sleeps in 3/4 of the bed, and pushes me out of bed. I am just a little tired and cranky. Grocery shopping is a nice I am sorry.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

". . . not that the rest of your life isn't fascinating. . ."

The above title is a quote from a friend's email. She sometimes sends me reminders when she feels I neglect the weddings. Do you think as I do that perhaps Miss Noemi is just a little sarcastic? That's OK, I love sarcasm. So for Noemi:

Wednesday's Weddings
I performed 5 weddings yesterday. Not a whole bunch, but enough so I didn't have a boring afternoon. One wedding the couple had her 5 year old daughter and his father with them. They used a cell phone for pictures. Well, the man tried to take pictures. He was having trouble. It wouldn't take, he took too long and the screen went dark, etc. The daughter stuck her hand out and gave him a look of just give it to me, I know how to do it. So he did. And she did.
The next wedding the couple had no witness and the clerk asked me if the bride's son could be the witness. I asked how old he was, 7 in second grade; and could he write his name in a little tiny place? Mom replied he could write it if he saw it. (Notice, I was asked. The clerk did not know that as long as you can sign your name, you can witness.) A second grader shouldn't need help with his name. But we went for it. During the whole wedding their new born screamed because it was feeding time. We just plowed through. As soon as the wedding was over the baby was fed. I gave the son a paper with his whole name printed out. Then the little boy signed his name. He copied it beautifully on the two documents. He was a very proud little boy.
One wedding was sorta weird, but very loving at the same time. The groom was 54, never been married, and dorky. He was a nervous wreck. The bride was very calm, a beautiful woman in her late 30's. She had never been married. They really were a love match. But the weird part, She was dressed like a 10 year old from 1955. She had on a white Chesterfield coat, a white baby doll dress with black trim at the hem, white leggings, and black Mary Jane's. Does anyone else think this was a strange look?
edit: I know there should be paragraph breaks. But blogger will not accept them today. Sorry about that.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Tonight Marty and I had dinner with our Wine & Dine group from our church, First Christian Church, Concord. Yes, we are a fun church. This group has met once a month for over 20 years.

Tonight one of the men passed around a card he got from Time Magazine. It informed him he had overpaid his renewal subscription by $o.o1. He has the choice of extending his subscription for one week or they will send him a check to cover the overpaid amount. We figure just sending the card cost the company $20.00, postage, time and trouble.

Now the extra week of the magazine is worth way more than the check. BUT we all decided he should ask for the check for $o.o1 and frame it with the card.

Aren't huge corporations just ridiculous? How do they make a profit?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Marty and I are outraged! Dancing With the Stars audience vote elimanated the second rated dancers, Joanna Krupa and Derek Hough. That left Mya (who is excellent and rated #1), Kelly Osbourne, and Donny Osmond. Donny is not real good, Kelly is better. Either one could have gone home and no big difference.

But Derek and Joannna, so graceful, so good looking, so professional in their dances. Boo, Baa Humbug. I am ticked. Marty is too, just a little.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Thursday afternoon I went on line to make an appointment for a routine mammogram. Usually appointments are a couple of months out. I clicked on next available and it came up Friday @1:45. I was surprised and grabbed it. Ladies, make your appointments if you are due. I have a dear friend who did a routine mammogram and they found a lump. She has had surgery, radiation and is now cancer free. Mammograms will save your life.

Saturday I called Direct TV because the Tivo box wasn't calling the satellite ( long boring story). Anyway, because of my "inconvenience" they gave me 3 free months of Showtime. That is 13 channels. So far there isn't much we want to watch. I asked if they had any senior citizens discounts, no. All they had were discounts for "NEW" customers. I told the rep that ticked me off. I have been a customer for 15 years, and why don't I get special treatment? So he is taking $10.00 off each month for the next 6 months. I will then call and ask what happened to my discount.

Why can't you find the H1N1 vaccine in the Bay Area? I talked to a friend in New Orleans today, they have plenty of vaccine. Here in the Bay Area, not enough to go around.

Marty and I were so domestic today. One major chore was to defrost the freezer in the garage. Of course it is full of food. We put the food in plastic tubs and wrapped the tubs in towels. Then he "walked"the freezer into the driveway and turned it off. We opened it up and turned a fan on it and let it melt. I then cleaned it inside and out, and he loaded it back up. We only found one thing that we knew we would never eat. So I threw away the fish sticks. The freezer is lovely, all clean, organized, and will last that way about a week. Then I won't be able to find anything again.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Today Marty and I worked a tour of spinal surgeon's wives at R. Strong Glass. Marty was assisting Randy and I worked in the gallery. I used Marty's camera, so do click on the pictures for details. They are way better than when I use my Palm.

Below is part of the glass gallery. We use lots of mirrors and glass shelving to show off the beauty of the glass.

When I win the lottery, this is the piece I want: The Guardian It is cast glass and took weeks to cool down. A companion piece is in the Louvre. I will never have the $1000s and $1000s needed to buy this. At least I get to work where it lives.
More gorgeous glass. The left display case has some of Marty's work. The huge piece on the right is Randy's. Click on the pix and see close up Marty's work.

See, I really was there, even if it is a mirror image. Lady in red, Susan, Randy's wife. Other mirror image is Flo, Randy's apprentice. Marty's work also shown,

Marty and Randy making a test piece. They are testing colors.

Marty is torching diachronic glass that Randy will pick up with the hot glass he is working with.

Randy at the glory hole, Marty still torching.

Randy reheating at the glory hole, Marty watching.

Marty is torching the picked up diachronic glass while Randy"paints" the vase with it.

Randy still painting and Marty torching.

Randy is using a steam stick to enlarge the vase. Marty is using a wooden paddle to prevent Randy burning his arm.

Randy is twirling the glass to stretch it. Marty has re-dipped the steam stick in water and has it ready for use.

Randy is jacking preparing to knock the piece off and place in the annealing oven.

Marty is torching the bottom of the vase after it was knocked off the pipe. This will smooth the rough parts and give it a polished look.

And that is how we spent Wednesday.

Monday, November 9, 2009


Ms.H asked me to come in today instead of Tuesday. She had a meeting Tuesday and a sub would be there. She didn't know the sub and felt maybe better if I wasn't there. Some subs don't do well with other adults in the room. So I worked today. I worked with them mostly one on one reading. Some are really good and some are really struggling. Several I stopped from reading, they were just too frustrated. Better to try another day.

There were only 4 weddings for me to do today. They were really spaced out. The last one kept me there 30 minutes over, but that was OK. One wedding was really sweet: groom 63 years old; bride 55 years old; he from North Carolina; she from Vietnam. They had maybe 20 people at the wedding. He was in a suit with a white rose boutonniere, she was in a lovely peach cocktail dress with a wrist corsage and bouquet of white roses. They were so serious until we started the vows and he got the giggles over her accent. She giggled and got through them. And then he cried. The man was so touched and moved. It was a beautiful thing. I noticed that she was taking his name. I said something and she asked why couldn't she have her maiden name put down as her middle name. I knew of no reason. She told me the clerk had said she couldn't. I checked with M, the marriage desk clerk. Downstairs clerk WRONG. M fixed the license and the couple thought M and I were wonderful.

One wedding was really sweet. Hispanic families, bride in jeans and groom in torn (stylishly) overalls. I asked them if anyone was going to stand up with them. They said no at the same time her dad said I am. I looked at them and they said yes that would be great. During most of the wedding Dad had his arm around his little girl, and he had tears in his eyes. As soon as the wedding was over he put on his wrap around sun glasses. I am sure that was so no one could see the tears. Very sweet.

And on a different note: parking in Oakland. We have meter maids who are like vultures. They stand by cars as the meter counts down to the red flashing expired. They ticket you while you are getting the receipt from the pay machine. But you have to give them credit, they target everyone. Today one of our Alameda County Sheriff's Deputies got a parking ticket.

Saturday, November 7, 2009


We have had guests off and on this month. And I have cooked most of the time. I have made some really great meals, pretty to look at, and very tasty. I keep forgetting to take pictures. Tonight Marty cooked, I did clean up, and I finally remembered to take the pictures. I did make a tossed salad. Marty made a risotto with wild mushroom, asparagus tips, and large shrimp wrapped in prosciutto. He also made flan for dessert. Some of the pictures are out of sequence. Sorry about that. I am too tired tonight to delete and then upload again.
Marty checking if the risotto is ready.
The flam cooling on a rack.
Marty working away. I was having a little wine and watching Graham Norton (it was on Tivo)

Big pot contains chicken broth, little pot contains chicken broth and liquor from hydrating the wild mushrooms, weird looking pot has the risotto rice with my really cool stir chef (This runs on batteries and stirs the contents of the pot. If food needs stirring for 30 to 45 minutes it is a life saver, at least an arm saver.).

Finished product. I know this should be the last picture. I blew it.

Plating the risotto and the shrimp.

Shrimp fresh from the grill.

We had a lovely evening tonight. Good food, really good wine, and good company. Tomorrow it will either be leftovers or chili mac.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Several thoughts:

Monday as I left the house I was nearly run over by a speeding car. Trust me, I had looked before turning out of my driveway, no cars in sight. Then there she was. I turned right onto the next street (speed limit 25). I have just pulled out from a stop sign and the crazy woman passed me and went speeding down the hill (through a school zone). She blew through a 4 way stop and was out of sight when I turned on the next street. I hope where ever she was going was worth the laws she was breaking.

Monday I did 5 weddings between 12:50 and 2:15. I sat a while and then did 2 more. This is as close to busy as I have been in weeks and weeks. Today, 2 weddings. Very Very slow. They did none in the morning.

Tonight we had our San Diego friends, Richard and Luis for dinner. I wish now we had taken pictures. It was a really pretty meal. We served a tossed salad that had red cabbage, radishes, carrots, and the last tomato from our garden. Oh and there was lettuce too. We had rice with chicken divan; and tomatoes stuffed with sausage, onions, mushrooms, Italian breadcrumbs and sherry. The meal also tasted wonderful. Marty and I both cooked this meal. We both worked on the chicken dish. I made suggestions for the tomatoes and he prepared it. I made the salad. And Marty did the grocery shopping. We enjoyed this meal, we love to cook together.

Our wonderful Willows Theatre will be closing its doors in Concord. The recession has won in that area. The Theater will continue at its Martinez theater. But it will not be the same caliber plays. Great sadness here.

Tuesday the children were nutso at school. Ms. H never raises her voice, never loses her cool. Tuesday she was talking in a loud voice and pretty much ready to kill them all. They wouldn't even sit still for me to read to them. The school office manager explained the craziness of the day/week. "It should never happen the same weekend: full moon, Halloween, time change". She is oh so right,

Sunday, November 1, 2009


This week I posted on facebook that Marty tested my love for him. He asked me to take him to BART a couple of times. The one at 12:30 p.m. was fine. It was the one at 7:00 a. m. that was the test. I do not do mornings. But for Marty I was up and dressed and took him to the train. Then for two days I told everyone what a saint I am.

This weekend, he proved his love big time. He took my car and put gas in it, he thought the tires looked low and checked the air pressure, he went to the grocery, AND he washed my car.

He is the winner in the proof of love contest. Diamonds are lovely, roses are sweet. But buying gas, washing the car, and going to the grocery: this man is a keeper.

Back off ladies, he is mine!