Summer with Talbots

Summer Styles from Tuckernuck

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Hodgepodge for Swimmers

Hello, dear friends.  How is your summer going?  All is well here.  The weather has been great.  I just wish there weren't so many reruns on TV, though.  Oh well, that's my battle. 

If it's Wednesday, it's time for Hodgepodge.  If you hit the button, you can visit Joyce, who will provide other links to her thoughtful questions. 

1.  It's officially summer (in the northern hemisphere anyway).  Which summer month is best and why?

I love the first days of summer in June when the days are warm and the nights are crisp.  Nothing beats good sleeping weather. We lucked out with a beautiful June this year.

2.  Can you swim?  How did you learn?  June 27th is National Sunglasses Day.  How many pair do you own?

Looks like Saul sans the cross.

I took swimming lessons from a man called Saul at the Jewish Community Center when I was seven years old.  I was more fascinated by Saul than mastering the sport I was supposed to learn.  I had never seen such a hairy man before, let alone in a speedo.  I grew up with a pale, hairless dad that wore swim trunk two sizes too big.  Needless to say, I was never a candidate for the Olympics.

I own two pairs of prescription Rayban Wayfarers.  One pair is scratched and smudged and the second one is less scratched and smudged.  I always start out taking care of my sunglasses and keep them in a case (like the Mister).  That lasts about twenty minutes.   

3.  What characteristic do you judge most harshly in yourself?  How about others?

Unfortunately, I come from a long line of impatient people.

When my girls were growing up, I used to tell them that there will always be someone smarter, prettier, and skinnier so get over it and love yourself.  You'll be a lot happier.

4.  Robert Frost wrote the now well-known poem entitled The Road Not Taken.  What's a road (literally or figuratively) you've always wanted to travel, and where do you hope it takes you?

I don't know about the road not taken, but there have been a few roads that I wish I had skipped.  

5.  Popsicles - yay or nay?  If you answered yay, what's your favorite flavor?

Popsicles have never made my boat float.  My latest addiction are these dabs of deliciousness on a stick which are only 80 calories.  I can eat a whole box for under 500 calories!!  

Hello momkini season!

6.  Brexit - on a scale of 1-10 how knowledgeable are you on what's involved here?  (1 = knowledgeable 10 = what's Brexit)  Is this new you'll follow or is it something you think won't impact your life in any way shape of form?

The other night I heard a comedian say the Brexit sounds like a breakfast sandwich.  Now, every time I hear the word the above image comes to mind.

As far as my knowledge goes, let's just say I wouldn't choose Brexit as a category if I were a contestant on a game show.

It would be more like:

"Real Housewives for 200 please."

7.  Share a song on your summer playlist.

I love Justin Timberlake's new song so much ...

... that I can't help but get up to dance.  

8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

This is a picture of our little Chili and her brother, Alan minutes after they were rescued from the streets of Houston. 

We met Alan and his Mom and Dad on Sunday at a state park.  They live in Connecticut.  The two pups had the greatest time running the trails, and we enjoyed catching up with Alan's Mom and Dad. 

And as if that wasn't enough fun, Chili made her first voyage to her Mom's favorite store.

What's your favorite song of the summer?   

Until next time...

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Anatomy of a Book Club

Hello, dear friends.  I hope that you are enjoying your weekend.  We lucked out with picture perfect weather.  Today, we are off to a walking trail to visit with Chili's brother, Alan and his family.  You can read about our last meeting here.  

On Wednesday night, I hosted my Book Club.  The Mister took the day off to do all the work to give me a hand. 

The guests were due at 7 PM, so I had some extra time before they arrived to take some pics.

Eight lovely ladies were expected.

I put together eight of these little flower vases so that each of the ladies could take one home.

The Mister We decided to do some different types of crostinis.

Roasted tomato with garlic herb goat cheese, fresh sage, and balsamic cream.

Tiger shrimp with edamame and mint, hummus, grilled asparagus, and siracha mayo.

Zucchini ribbons with sundried tomato goat cheese, crumbled feta, and roasted peppers.

Espresso rubbed sirloin with apple fennel slaw, olive creme fraiche, and white truffle oil.

We offered wine and spiked and non-spiked Arnold Palmers.   

For dessert, the Mister whipped up individual servings of a buttermilk panna cotta with rhubarb jam, black fig, and fresh berries.  Also, a lovely lady by the name of Nancy brought the most delicious butterscotch brownies.  The bad new is I didn't get a picture because we inhaled them; the good news is Nancy was kind enough to send me the recipe which you will find at the end of this post.

The hostess selects the book, and everyone seemed pleased with my choice.  Sally Hepworth is one of my favorite authors.  She has a way of reaching into the souls of her characters and the hearts of her readers.  I highly recommend this gem of a novel.

Next month's book. 
Has anyone read it?

Non-Reading Reading Book Club 

Our illustrious founder is Mickey, standing second from the right.
I consider myself blessed to have the opportunity to see these wonderful women every month.  We may not discuss the book much, but it is always a guaranteed great time.

Warning:  this recipe should be kept in a vault.

Nancy's Butterscotch Brownies

2/3 cup butter, melted. (10 2/3 T.)

2 cups light brown sugar
2 eggs
1/2 tsp. Salt
1 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. Baking powder
2 tsp. Vanilla
2 handfuls chocolate bits

Melt butter in saucepan over low heat, then cool 10 minutes.
Beat in eggs, one at a time, followed by vanilla and brown sugar.
Combine flour, salt, and baking powder, then stir into saucepan.
Add chocolate bits.
Spread into buttered 9 x 13 pan
Bake @ 350 degrees for 26 minutes
(In my oven 26 minutes works well - I don't like them as well if overcooked)
Happy baking!

Thanks Nancy!

Until next time...

Proudly linking up with:

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Favorite Things

Hello, dear friends.  Just checking in.  I have been in North Carolina visiting my #2.  There is a post in the works with plenty of pictures of the beautiful Tar Heel state.  

Tonight I am hosting my book club.  I am supervising the Mister as we speak as he is whipping up his magic in the kitchen.  

In the meantime, here are a few of my latest favorite things.

About a month ago, I was contacted by jimmyCASE asking me to review their iPhone case.  How could I say no?

First of all, it's a great looking case.  The core is mahogany, and there are a variety of great color choices for the elastic pocket.  It can hold up to six cards or even a car key and not stretch out.

My jimmyCASE arrived the day before I left for North Carolina.  I decided to give it a whirl on my trip.  I stowed my driver's license in the pocket so that I had my downloaded boarding pass and ID together.  Usually, it takes me 20 minutes to get my license out of my wallet.  You never want to be behind me in line.  My jimmyCASE made my security experience much more pleasant for me and those waiting in line behind me.

My jimmyCASE also came in handy at the hotel.  For once, my room key was not swallowed up in the Bermuda triangle in my purse.  

It would make a great gift for the high school or college student who needs to have their fake ID school ID with them at all times.  

I give my jimmyCASE two thumbs up.

This deliciousness in a bottle was one of my favorite things in 2014.  There are very few, if any, sunless tanners available containing SPF.  Ulta used to have one but discontinued it this year. 

I use Palmer's Sunless Tanner every day.  It contains SPF15, and it is the perfect protection for me running around town.  A lot of sunless tanners stink like dirty feet, but Palmer's is loaded with cocoa butter and smells like Summer.  An added bonus is that it is a rich moisturizer. 

Amazon used to carry Palmer's, but they have been out of stock for a while.  I finally found it on Walgreens online.  Added bonus:  it's only $7.99 and is delivered within two days.  

I received a sample of LaRoche-Posay CC Cream, and I really liked it.  If you have a lot of redness in your complexion like me, this CC Cream is for you.  It is light and blends easily and camouflages my a ruddy complexion.  It only comes in one color which is light so if you have a medium skin tone this probably won't work for you.  

An added bonus for all you fair-skinned girls is that LaRoche-Posay CC Cream is enriched with a 30 SPF.   

If you have been reading my blog for awhile, you know that I am very fickle when it comes to mascaras.  My new love has been a past love, and I am back to Benefit's Roller Lash.  I just love the fact that it is easy to apply, looks natural, and doesn't clump.

PS...I still love my heated eyelash curler.

I'm sure I'm late to the party on this one, but I love to put frozen grapes in my Chardonnay on warm Summer nights.  Not only do I appreciate the fact that my wine stays cold, but it makes me feel like a fancy girl.

That's it for now.

What's your latest favorite thing?

Until next time...

Proudly linking up with:
Thoughts of Home
Foodie Friday and Everything Else

Friday Favorites

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

A Lake Filled Hodgepodge

Good morning, dear friends.  I hope that you have had the same gorgeous weather that we are experiencing.  What a way to begin the Summer.

If it's Wednesday, it's time for Hodgepodge.


1.  If you could sit beside and/or jump in any lake in the whole wide world today, which lake would you choose and why?

The only lake I would be interested in is Lynchwood Lake at what was formerly Camp Tegawitha in Tobyhanna, Pa.  It would bring back so many wonderful memories of my camp days.


2.  What's you favorite 'fruity' drink?

I gave this question a lot of thought.  I could never turn my nose up to a good Bloody Mary.

Hotel Madeline
Telluride, CO

I'll take one of these and make it a double.

3.  I read a list here of thirteen things to do right now to simplify your life.  They were:  clean as you go, re-evaluate your relationships (cut toxic ties), unsubscribe (too many blogs and websites), de-clutter, write down your daily goals, reply to emails right away, forget multitasking, create a morning routine, re-evaluate your commitments (which hobbies and responsibilities are most important to you), say no, clean up your computer, and plan your day ahead.

Which of the tasks listed do you currently find most helpful in keeping life simple?  Which item on the list should you adopt in order to simplify your life this month?

Could you repeat the question?

My head still hurts from thinking about the last question.

4.  What did you do the summer after you graduated from high school?

I worked at Read's department store as a floater.  My favorite area was cosmetics.  I think I spent more time making up my own face than anyone else's.

5.  Are you a fan of podcasts?  If so, what's a favorite?

Thanks to my girls, I listened to Serial and enjoyed it.  I haven't listened to a podcast since then.

6.  Do you think today's fathers have it harder, easier, or just different than fathers in the past?

I think the same thing when I am serving my Mister dinner.

Now that women are major players in the workforce, it lessens the pressure of being the sole breadwinner for the man.  However, he needs to brush up his skills in the laundry room.

7.  Tell us one way you're like your father?  Or not at all like your father if that's easier?

My father considers himself the bon vivant of his assisted living facility.  I describe myself as a supermodel, trophy wife.

Would you be interested in buying a ticket into our dream world? 

8.  Insert your random thought here. 

Southern Charm followers:

I have never seen anybody go from 0 to 180 in less than 2 seconds like Thomas!  He had to have been mixing his alcohol with something.  If I were him, I wouldn't show my face in public ever again. 

On another note...
to balance out my trashy taste in TV.

The other night, I watched a very sad episode of Monarch of the Glen, and I still get teary-eyed thinking about it.  I positively adore this show.

What's the one thing you do to simplify your life?

Until next time...

After watching Monarch of the Glen, I told the Mister that I want to add a Springer Spaniel to our family so I can name him "Useless."  He told me we already have two that deserve that title.  
I told you, he's a regular Jerry Seinfeld.

J. Crew

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