Hello Hello

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Chelsee's on Trade Street

The oldest and I are trying to decide which is better, my delicious apple cake (shown above) or the incredible pineapple cake he chose. It's a toss-up, so I'm glad we got both.

Chelsee's

ATTN: Local Library Scofflaws and Miscreants

During the entire month of January all Library customers can pay their overdue fines with non-perishable food items at any Library location.

For every item donated, one dollar in fines will be forgiven.

Remember, only non-perishable food items will be accepted. Also, please make sure all donated food is within the printed expiration date.

All food items collected will be donated to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest North Carolina to help fight hunger throughout our community.

Credits do not apply to replacement cost of new materials.


And a reminder: all branches are closed New Year's Day, Friday, January 1st.

Forsyth County Public Library
Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest North Carolina

Local Resolution Rec #3

In The! Year! Twenty! Ten!, resolve to clean out the attic/garage/spare bedroom/closets/whole house.

Then pack up your unwanted but still serviceable clothes, furniture, and household items, and take them to one of the 37 Goodwill collection sites in or near Forsyth County. Goodwill donations traditionally slow from January to April, though the demand for services and training does not. Your items act like a local lifeline.

Then resolve to stay organized: head to the Space Savers on Stratford Road to grab some organizational items. Space Savers headquarters their company right here in Winston-Salem, and their prices are very competitive.

Goodwill Industries of Northwest NC
Space Savers

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Seven years ago today

My mother died. My sweet, fabulous, funny mother.

Spring 1974

I'm OK, just a little weepy and wondering if I'll ever be able to look at the date "December 29th" without thinking about losing her. Probably not.

The youngest's post-therapy lunch destination choice is...

Dairi-O, where everybody eats (including Esbette, who came with!)

Local Resolution Rec #2

Resolve to throw a get-together in The! Year! Twenty! Ten! Then resolve to party with a purpose.

The idea: Have fun and raise money to provide hot, nutritious meals for homebound senior adults in need Forsyth County all at the same time!

The background:
Edible Evenings is a grassroots fundraising campaign for Meals-on-Wheels of Senior Services, Inc. Since 2003, people of all ages and backgrounds have joined together with friends, families, club and church members to host an Edible Evening fundraiser and to help make Winston-Salem an exceptional place to live!

The way it works: You bring people together for any occasion you desire and provide the usual food, music and merriment.

In return your guests bring a donation for Meals-on-Wheels. You can suggest an amount or let your guests decide how much to give - it's all up to you!

Edible Evenings
Meals on Wheels

Monday, December 28, 2009

How Lucky

Clementine is one of my favorite girl names ever. Also one of my favorite fruits. Also the name of one of the two guinea pigs available for adoption at the county shelter right now.

We had a guinea pig once when I was growing up. His name was Lucky, because he had a ring around his middle like a lucky stone. When Lucky's luck finally ran out, it was the dead of winter, and so my mother wrapped his little piggy body in aluminum foil and put him in the big freezer out in the garage until the ground thawed the following spring and we could bury him in the backyard, among all the other unluckies. A few weeks after Lucky's demise, my parents went out of the country, leaving my brother and me in the care of a single woman from church. My mother had the menu for the week all written out but told the woman she was welcome to change it up as she liked, that my brother and I were by no means picky eaters and there were plenty of extra cuts of meat out in the freezer in the garage.

You can see where this is going.

Yes, it's true; we got to see Lucky one more time, his little frozen face nestled in tinfoil like a baby in a bunting, lying on the kitchen floor where the shrieking woman dropped him unceremoniously. We did not, however, ever see the woman again after my parents returned a day or so later, she deeming the Lucky episode unforgivably scarring.

The End.

Anyway, if you're in the market to adopt a Clementine (shown above, photo credit FCAC) or a Darling or even a rabbit named Snuggles, you're in luck.

"Other" animals at the Forsyth County Animal Shelter

Beginning and ending at the boathouse

Anyone have any idea how long the Reynolda Gardens loop is? I'm guessing about a mile.

Reynolda Gardens

Get married in K-Vegas!


My husband and I were married twelve years ago this coming Sunday in our family parish in Georgetown. If you ever get up to DC, go have a peek; it's incredibly lovely and wildly historic.

Magnolia Manor
Town of Kernersville

Enquiring Minds Want to Know

"Mommy?"

"Mm."

"What do you think they'll look like?"

"What what will look like?"

"The new ones."

"The new what, honey?"

"Hands."

"I'm sorry. I'm totally lost. Whose hands?"

"The Winston-Salem Dash ones. The ones we wear." The youngest waves exaggeratedly.

"Oh. The giant, foam fan hands?"

"Uh-huh."

"Sweetie, I have no idea."


...and thanks to the comments of anonymous & anonymous, now we do
The Winston-Salem Dash

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Resolution Rec for Residents of the City of the Arts

In The! Year! Twenty! Ten!, resolve to buy a piece of art or ten.

Conveniently, there are some in the new local etsy love that went up this morning at the top of the lefthand column.

Thank you for supporting local artisans.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Bisou for Mizu

After devouring the beef teriyaki shown above at lunch today, the oldest declared Mizu his second* favorite restaurant.

Mizu is located at 3374 Robinhood, next to Lowes Foods in Sherwood Plaza


* His first favorite is the Italian restaurant in Epcot, which declaration I laud heartily. The spinach gnocchi alone are worth stabbing someone for.

To everything, turn, turn, turn

He still had his head when I left for the 8:30 cult service (SueMo and I were introduced to hymns!) this morning. Still, a week is pretty good in these parts, and someone told me we may get more snow New Year's Eve.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas, peeps

I'm eating turrĂ³n and wearing new sock monkey slippers.

I'm very, very happy.

I hope you are, too.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

God bless them all


Somewhere in the world tonight, a small child with a fear of the dark is sleeping in the dark.

Somewhere in the world tonight, a family is embracing a foster child fiercely and wholeheartedly.

Somewhere in the world tonight, a man who woke up married is going to bed a widower.

Somewhere in the world tonight, a woman is giving birth to a baby she knows she cannot keep.

Somewhere in the world tonight, a grandmother is learning how to read.

Somewhere in the world tonight, a person is holding another's hand, keeping a stranger from dying alone.

Merry Christmas to heroes the world over.

Fourth generation

"Salem Square 1800" by P.B. Gray (Pauline Bahnson)

Some of my favorite seasonal decorations are small, framed Christmas cards of Old Salem collected by my grandmother, the original Lucy Cash. She herself was born in the 1800s, a fact which boggled my young mind in the 1970s.

Three generations later, my children love looking at them, recognizing landmarks (the water pump, Mommy!) and pointing out little details like the snowman at the right edge. And one day the oldest's grandchildren will themselves boggle at the fact that he was born in the 1900s.

Old Salem

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Local Loss

Errol Milner Clifford died in his mother's arms with his father at his side surrounded by his beloved family at 4:45 pm on Wednesday, December 23.

Errol

In! The! Year! Twenty! Ten! of course

In mid/late January, this former Peak Fitness on Robinhood will open as a sparkling, new YMCA. If you join it between now and January 15th, you'll save $75 off the New Member fee.

Robinhood YMCA

Local Auto Pride

University Boulevard

Speaking of clean cars, our favorite local firefighter is also a bail bondsman, has a giant turkey leg concession, and owns an auto detailing business. He's like the most multi-taskiest person ever. (Hi, Mr. C.J.!)

Anyone?


Help!

Shown at right is the youngest's gift for his brother.

I need to know where I can find a pre-sized frame for an 8.5" x 11" piece so it can go right on their wall.

I do not want to toodle all over town in search of it, so I am ever so hopeful one of you has seen one in the last few days and can tell me where.

PS: Sorry to be such an utter Mommy-blogger the last few days.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Takes care of ants in the pants

Open Bounce @ BounceU, $9/kid/session, parents bounce free
socks mandatory, reservations strongly recommended

Holiday Open Bounce Schedule:
  • WEDNESDAY 12/23: 10:30-NOON, 12:30-2 PM
  • THURSDAY 12/24: 10-11:30 AM, NOON-1:30 PM
  • CLOSED FRIDAY 12/25
  • SATURDAY 12/26: 10:30-NOON, 12:30-2 PM
  • SUNDAY 12/27: 2-3:30 PM
  • MONDAY 12/28: 10-11:30 AM, 1:30-3 PM
  • TUESDAY 12/29: 10:45-NOON (AGES 5 AND UNDER ONLY), 12:30-2 PM, 4-5:30 PM, 6:40-8 PM
  • WEDNESDAY 12/30: 10:30-NOON, 1-2 PM
  • THURSDAY 12/31: 10:30-NOON
BounceU, Lewisville

Surprisingly, we were in and out in ten minutes

Me: You worked really hard in therapy today. We can go wherever you choose for lunch.

Youngest: I just want a snack.

Me: We can do that. You're probably not very hungry yet since you ate breakfast later than you usually do on a Tuesday. Where would you like to go? We can go wherever you want.

Youngest: To the mall! To buy a salty pretzel!

Me:

Youngest: Mommy, you said wherever.

Hanes Mall

El Blingo


Today's timekiller for bored, antsy kiddos:

Look! Faux Mexican tin ornies!

1. Break out the aluminum foil and the colored Sharpies.

2. Underneath: cardboard from the recycling bin

3. Finished with: scrap ribbon, taped on


¡
Feliz Navidad!

Monday, December 21, 2009

You! Go mail something!

Even with a line out the door, it was still only a 15 minute wait.

Next up: bacon, cheddar, and chive

We're still awful at shaping, but we're having fun experimenting with flavors; these are whole wheat with butter and cinnamon.

I put his life expectancy at 'Tuesday'

His huge and ugly* sibling is in the front yard of course.


* it has sticks and leaves sticking out of the mammoth snowballs

Shop Local, a last grouping

Numerous alert LiF readers emailed to point out to me that Friday's and today's Shop Local features failed to post. I looked into the matter and would love to tell you it was a Blogger/Google error, but alas, it was my fault.

I am soooo excited for The! Year! Twenty! Ten! that I am apparently already dating items as such. You should probably avoid taking a check from me until after January 1st.

In any event, there being only a few days left before Christmas, Hannukah being over, and Kwanzaa calling for handmade gifts, a fact I gleaned from being called upon to read Santa Kwaz to two kindergarten classes, I am doing one last grouping of Shop Local items, here and now.


1. Woodcraft Construction Kits!


These are very cool for design nuts, engineers, architects, older kids who love Legos or models... anyone.

They come in a variety of models and start at a mere $3.50. The two I've shown are $5.00 (peacock) and $10.00 (Eiffel Tower).

Find them at Designed by Snooze, 535 Trade Street, Winston-Salem.

2. Art Card Games and Sticky Notes!

Give your favorite cubicle prisoner or wannabe artist some inspirational fun!

Art Card Games are $7.50. Sticky Notes are $5.

Find them at Edward McKay, 115 Oakwood Drive, Winston-Salem. (While not truly a solely local business, they are fervent supporters of the local community and local businesses.)

3. Ponytail holders!

These upscale beauties from Ollie Sang will lend culture to your coiffure, hipness to your hair, sass to your style.

Available in a wide range of fabrics, each set of two is $9.99.

Find them at The Museum Store, Reynolda Museum of American Art, Winston-Salem.

4. Zipper Fobs!

Each fob is crafted by hand and completely unique. Find one as individual as the person for whom you're shopping.

$10 apiece.

Find them at the Associated Artists giftshop, 301 W. Fourth, Winston-Salem.

5. The Avo-Saver!

Quite possibly the most perfect gift ever for guacamole fiends, the Avo-Saver allows one to use only half an avocado and store the other half neatly with minimal spoilage.

$4.95 apiece.

Find it at The Golden Apple, 3458 Robinhood, Winston-Salem.

-----

This concludes the 2009 holiday edition of Shop Local. Look for more items in The! Year! Twenty! Ten!

Wanted: Local Groomer

Meet Lady, Esbette's betrothed's pup, who is in desperate need of a bath, a groom, and a de-mullet.

I suggested a call to Reynolda Vet, who ably handle my herd, but Esbette and Future Mr. Esbette are concerned that this level of bedragglement may be beyond RV's capacity.

I offered up Barkley Manor, whose mobile pet spas fairly haunt Buena Vista, but Esbette and F.M.E. are concerned that such lush pampering might be beyond their budget, given the upcoming nuptials.

Accordingly they asked if I would ask YOU for suggestions for good, local groomers on the cheap.

In other local dog news, Pep ate an entire, unopened package of mini-marshmallows this morning, bag and all. Raise your hand if you're surprised. Anyone? Anyone? Yeah, I didn't think so.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

We'll let you know how Pennsylvania turns out

We took out The United States Cookbook from Central Library. We're fixing to try some Yankee cooking.

Hrm

Hypothetically speaking, if you burned yourself pretty severely, and the hypothetical burn was still leaky a hypothetical week later, what would you hypothetically do?

The burn is hypothetically small but inconveniently located for keeping hypothetically sterile. Let's say, hypothetically, it's on your right hand.

It's not hypothetically infected that you, hypothetically not an actual doctor, can tell, but it's not hypothetically healed either, in spite of a hypothetical slathering of aloe the first two days.

(On a hypothetical happy note, the gingerbread cookies you were hypothetically baking when you may or may not have burned yourself were hypothetically awesome.)

Saturday, December 19, 2009

With authority

video

Sled? We don't need no stinkin' sled.

We tried out various non-sled sledding options this morning as a courtesy to readers who may not have sleds at their disposal. This snow isn't powder, so we suggest packing down a snow track first. Once you've done that...

Heartily recommend:
Snow bibs (technique shown above)
Boogie boards (the oldest can almost board standing up!)
Sterilite container lids (with exterior side down)

Disappointingly not worth breaking out:
IKEA bags

I remember with fondness sledding on:
Metal trash can lids
My mother's cookie sheets

Friday, December 18, 2009

Squee!

Yikes, the roads are icing up early

We've made our way home from school and placed our snow catchers outside. Snow Cream, here we come!

(While I wait, I'm trying to calculate the over-under on what time one of the yahoos flying down my street like it's the Autobahn wrecks.)

UPDATE, 10 AM Saturday:

Breaking news update from SueMo

Accumulation starting downtown!

Best Late Night Phone Call Ever

Good news: Someone's engaged to be married.

Better news: THEY'RE SETTLING DOWN HERE. IN WINSTON.

I've been smiling madly while simultaneously on the verge of tears ever since the phone rang at the late hour of ten-something.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Local Ice Awesome

Public Skate hours for the next two weeks
Joel Coliseum

My blasted superpowers are out again

I spent today grousing mightily over my lack of the following abilities
  • teleportation
  • time freeze
  • ability to be in more than one place at the same time
And it kills me that the way I made my ridiculously overscheduled calendar work without majorly dropping the ball (so far as I know) was to put off going to the grocery until after my meeting after school today.

Because now I'm going to go up there and buy, among other things, bread and milk, which items we legitimately need weather notwithstanding, and everyone's going to think I am one of The Wintry Mix French Toast Posse.

Boooooooo.
-----

..WINTER STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FROM NOON FRIDAY TO 7 PM EST SATURDAY...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN RALEIGH HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM WARNING FOR A MIXTURE OF SNOW AND SLEET...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON FRIDAY TO 7 PM EST SATURDAY. THE WINTER STORM WATCH IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.

BASIS...AN AREA OF LOW PRESSURE IS EXPECTED TO DEVELOP OVER THE GULF OF MEXICO TONIGHT... THEN TRACK NORTHEAST ALONG THE CAROLINA COAST FRIDAY NIGHT THROUGH SATURDAY.

PRECIPITATION TYPES AND ACCUMULATION...SNOW AND SLEET ACCUMULATIONS OF 3 TO 5 INCHES ARE POSSIBLE WITH LOCALLY HIGHER AMOUNTS POSSIBLE. WITH THE STORM SYSTEM STILL IN THE INITIAL STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT...THE LOW PRESSURE TRACK REMAINS UNCERTAIN. THE SMALLEST DEVIATION EAST OR WEST THAN THE CURRENT MODEL TRACK...COULD RESULT IN HEAVIER OR LESSER AMOUNTS ACROSS THE WARNING AREA.

TIMING AND DURATION...PRECIPITATION WILL BEGIN AS SNOW ACROSS THE NORTHWEST AND CENTRAL PIEDMONT...INCLUDING THE PIEDMONT TRIAD REGION FRIDAY AFTERNOON. THE SNOW WILL CONTINUE THROUGH THE EVENING AND OVERNIGHT HOURS... POSSIBLY BECOMING HEAVY AT TIMES. THE SNOW MAY BECOME MIXED WITH SLEET LATE FRIDAY NIGHT AND DURING THE DAY ON SATURDAY...BEFORE TAPERING OFF SATURDAY EVENING. THERE IS ALSO THE POTENTIAL FOR A THIN GLAZE OF ICE FROM FREEZING RAIN ACROSS THE WARNING AREA.

IMPACTS...TRAVELING WILL BECOME TREACHEROUS ACROSS THE WARNING AREA FRIDAY EVENING THROUGH THE DAY ON SATURDAY...WITH SLICK ICY SPOTS LIKELY TO DEVELOP ON ELEVATED SURFACES...INCLUDING BRIDGES AND OVERPASSES. SOME SCATTERED POWER OUTAGES ARE POSSIBLE DUE TO THE COMBINATION OF FREEZING RAIN AND STRONG WINDS OF 20 TO 30 MPH.

How to tell your grandmother you love her

For a few years beginning when I was seven, I sent my grandmother original and incredibly awful poems I wrote just for her. While my mother ironed in the laundry room, I'd sit at the little desk just outside and type them on the old, black typewriter, the one you didn't even have to plug in.

My grandmother kept them all, of course. And when she died a few years later, my mother found the sheaf of them inside the hutch in Ocala and brought them home with the dishes she'd grown up with, her little silver mirror, and all her childhood photos.

One snowy afternoon when I was in my twenties and visiting, she made us Irish coffee and brought out the photos to show me, picture after picture of my beautiful mother before she was my mother. And then we found the poems again, and so we began to read them as best we could through laughter that left us in tears.

The worst stanza, which became a refrain of sorts, used regardless of lack of relevance whenever one of us wanted to make the other start laughing again:

When a woman grows old,
And she cannot be saved,
Do her bones grow cold,
As she lies in her grave?
-----

The Story Hatchery was founded to give children and young adults a place to explore and tell their stories. We seek to help them learn to write through an organic, nourishing experience so they develop positive associations with the craft. We remove focus from a final grade, competition, and test scores.

The Story Hatchery, 1020 Brookstown Avenue, Suite 3

Shop Local


Today's gift: razzle dazzle! These oversize "jewels" will bring style to any stocking and dazzle to any desktop. Fair warning: it's impossible to resist picking them up. Available in a variety of colors; put together a bling bouquet for someone you love!


$2.50 each at the Museum Shop at SciWorks

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Local Need

Urgent Request for the Children’s Home

As you know, renovations are underway at “My Aunt’s House,” the home that will house pregnant, homeless teens. They are at a place in the renovations to have some indoor painting done and it needs to be completed as soon as possible. They are working within time constraints with the contractor and would like for the painting to be completed before the carpet is installed. There are 20 accent walls to be painted, and the Children’s Home will provide the paint. They need crews from 4-5 people up to 20 people to make this happen.

Please share with your groups. Please contact Linda Coleman at 721-7699 or email her at lcoleman@tchome.org if you can help in any way. Please respond quickly!


You can also help out by purchasing items from the "My Aunt's House" registry at Babies R Us, #79863281. (Go to Find a Registry, then use dropdown menu to select Search by Registry #.)

The Children's Home

Trade between Fifth and Sixth

I was Mystery Guest in the youngest's first grade classroom today. They've been studying "holidays around the world", so I talked for a few minutes about how lucky we are to live in such a culturally rich area as Forsyth County. I don't think it ever occurred to them that kids in other American cities don't grow up with Moravian stars, lovefeasts, and luminaries lining the roads.

Holla!

KT sends a shoutout to all her fans. Here she strikes her best crimefighting pose outside WEC, where we enjoyed ridiculously tasty sandwiches.

West End Cafe

Local Sam

I love spotting Sam The Dot Man pieces around town. They just make me smile. There was a house on Wellington recently with a For Rent sign he'd done, and I was so sad when it rented and the sign came down.

Anyway, this is a detail of a long bench near the Computer Learning Center at Central Library. I'm here stocking up on exciting (but easy) cookbooks for the kids and I to try recipes from next week.

more local Sam goodness

Central Library

Shop Local


Today's gift: a sachet! These little lovelies have dainty ribbon loops so you can hang them on a hanger between clothes or coats, but they're so pretty you may just want to hang one from a dresser knob instead. Assorted colors and graphics; I was unable to find two exactly alike.


$7.99 apiece at the Museum Store, Reynolda House Museum of American Art

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Local Eco-Friendly

During this time of the year especially with the economy more people are coming to Freecycle hoping to fill their NEEDS. The thing is Freecycle is/was not created as a needy site. It was created as a means for people to keep usable items out of the landfill.

If you have NEEDS then you need to contact an agency prepared to help the needy. You can ask for wants and you can make offers, but lets keep it simple leaving out the Christmas wants & wishes. The sad stories are not needed here.

-general announcement, December 15th, Winston-Salem FreeCycle

See, this is why I just come up with "... And I mean EXACT" contests when I want to get rid of stuff. Speaking of which, someone asked me yesterday (hi, JB!) when those might start up again. The answer is In The Year Twenty-Ten!, which is how I've decided to refer to next year.

Winston-Salem FreeCycle

Local Lost

Reynolds at Warwick


more Local Losts

even more

Specifically oatmeal butterscotch

After working really hard in Occupational Therapy today, the youngest chose to get lunch at my office. It quickly became apparent that this was a ruse to get one of the delicious cookies.

Give the Gift of Life

Beginning this Friday, the Northwest North Carolina Chapter of the American Red Cross is hosting a winter blood drive at the Winston-Salem Blood Center (650 Coliseum). Please consider donating blood or platelets. Daily giveaways include WFU Women's Baskeball Tickets!

Blood Center Hours
Giveaways

... And if you want to be a real rockstar, ask to join the bone marrow registry while you're there.

NWNC Chapter of the American Red Cross

WFU Women's Basketball

Shop Local


Today's gift:
prolonged produced freshness! Give your favorite veggie muncher an adorable-looking BluApple set and give the gift of longer storage life for fruits and veggies!

From the BluApple website: Ethylene gas is given off naturally by fruits and vegetables as a signaling mechanism in order to coordinate uniform ripening. However, once concentrated in your refrigerator or other storage areas, the presence of ethylene gas continues to speed up ripening and hasten spoilage.

The BluApple is designed to provide effective ethylene gas absorption for three months in a typical home refrigerator produce bin or storage container. The active ingredient does not "wear out", but continues to absorb ethylene until it has reached its capacity.



$9.99 at Lowes Foods, which is indeed based right here in Winston-Salem. I found it at the Sherwood Plaza location.

Monday, December 14, 2009

shown: Ash, my fave character

2 energetic children
+ 2 hours shorter than usual schoolday
+ 0 recess
+ 1 husband working from home
migraine

Accordingly I popped three Advil in my mouth and two children in the car. The Grand had a 3:55 showing of The Fantastic Mr. Fox. It was, quite simply, fantastic.

The oldest, who recently finished an "old school animation" class at Sawtooth School, appreciated the stop-motionness of it. I appreciated the Roald Dahlness of it. The youngest just appreciated it period.

Catch it if you can.

The Fantastic Mr. Fox
The Grand Theatre
Sawtooth School for Visual Art

Local International

Children of Vietnam, based here in Winston-Salem, works to give Vietnamese children in need "good nutrition, life saving medical care, safe and secure housing, and access to education."

So far they've built almost 500 houses for these families.

And right now they're running a contest!

From the blog, where you can find more details:

Make a donation to help the 500th family in need with a sponsorship of a house ($1250) between now and January 5th; you will be entered into a drawing for a gift of a lovely framed piece of Vietnamese art created in the ancient town of Hoi An near Danang.

Children of Vietnam

Shop Local


Note: Apparently Shop Local decided to observe the official fog delay today.


Today's gift: pencil toppers! Some pencil wielders are better than others and deserve something special. Specifically, those pencil wielders deserve five assorted meat pencil toppers. Why? I have not the foggiest, but they do.


$3.95 a box at BrewNerds, 305 W. Fourth Street, Winston-Salem

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Female, age 5, pink, red, princess, fairy land, DRESSES SIZE 6

I saw it on the Angel Tree, and I grabbed it along with two other tags.

This evening found me wrapping my Angel Gifts: the sweaters for a little boy, the towels suitable for a set of brothers (plus washcloths, unasked for but I know how boys are).

And the dresses.

One a jumper and turtleneck set, suitable for cold weather. One a short sleeve dress suitable for spring in the Piedmont. These two I folded neatly and placed at the bottom of the box on sheets of tissue, side by side.

I added a fresh sheet of bright pink tissue, then laid the dress-up tutu on top. I folded the tissue over it, so when my angel opens the box and lifts the tissue, the first thing she'll see is a palest pink confection with layers of tulle and sparkling bugle beads.

I hope it fits.
I hope her parents forgive the impracticality of it.
I hope she feels beautiful in it.

Merry Christmas, Angel.

Psst

New local etsy love went up. In honor of the view from my window, this rotation features shades of gray.

FYI: Anytime you need or want to view previous local etsy love items, just click where it says LifeinForsyth within the etsy box.

Thank you for supporting local artisans!

A Poem

Ice-wrapped twigs,
Freezing rain from grayest sky,
Flickering lights and power outages,
But no snow.
Thank goodness I went by Edward McKay yesterday.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Local Traditions with Local Friends

This is the fantastic ornament I gave MPB last year, a nod to Barnabas and Willa. It's by local artist Tanja Sova. The year before that I gave her a blown-glass bird from Piedmont Craftsmen.

By agreement, we exchange holiday decorative items in lieu of big gifts. I still haven't found this year's, though.

Tanja Sova
Piedmont Craftsmen

Local Contest

Share your inspiring holiday story and Support the Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC!

This holiday season, Dewey’s Bakery will be collecting your favorite holiday stories and is inviting you to share and inspire. Tell us about your favorite family traditions or someone in your world that inspires you because of the special deeds they do in our community or world.

Every week, Dewey’s will select a winning story that 107.5 “Murphy in the Morning” will read live on the air. Dewey’s will also make a $100 donation each week to the local Food Bank in the name of that winner – and we’ll send the winner a Dewey’s holiday gift basket, filled with an assortment of fresh baked Dewey’s goodies for the holidays.

Email your stories to share@deweys.com.


Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC
107.5 FM KZL
Murphy in the Morning
Dewey's

Everything looks better in candlelight

That said, Reynolda House is already gorgeous, so I cannot imagine how amazing it looks aglow with candles. It must be like The Magical Sparkle Manor of Swoontastic Happiness over there!

See Reynolda House by Candlelight for the First Time

Experience the holiday traditions of the Reynolds family with a first-of-its-kind guided candlelight tour of the 1917 Reynolds mansion.

As visitors approach Reynolda House, the gazebo and the entrance will sparkle with tiny white lights. Once inside, tour guides will share family anecdotes taken from letters and diaries and point out decorative highlights as visitors learn about the Reynolds family’s holiday traditions.

Tours, which last 50 minutes, will be offered on December 10-12 at 4:30, 5:30, and 6:30 p.m. each day.

Admission is $12 for members and students, $15 for non-members. Call 336.758.5150 for reservations.


Reynolda House Museum of American Art

Shop Local


Today's gift: upscale office supplies! These Vera Bradley binder clips put the fun in function and will cheer up anyone's boring paperwork. Give them to your favorite Type A. Each package contains 8 clips, 4 of each size.


$6 a package at Designed by Snooze, 535 N. Trade St, Winston-Salem

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Yaki Udon

I have always believed I would starve if ever someone took away my cutlery and told me I had to use chopsticks to eat all my food from now on.

Y'all.

Tonight I was like Edward Chopstickhands, a master of gorgery*, oohing and aahing at each mouthful. Apparently I just needed the motivation to learn, and I more than found it in the food put down in front of me this evening. I am telling you, I would have found a way to eat with one chopstick if I'd had to.

Get thee to Mizu, people. It more than lives up to its aromas.

Mizu is located at 3374 Robinhood, next to Lowes Foods in Sherwood Plaza.

* I made this word up.

Working for it

The oldest is paying for his gifts with his own money this year. No more picking out gifts and then picking my wallet -- he has worked hard to save up nearly $20 with which to shop.

"But I still don't have enough for anything good," he said gloomily in the store.

And so I taught him about building on existing possessions, about giving earbuds to the person who loves his iPod, about selecting puzzle glue for the jigsaw fiend. He listened carefully then headed purposefully for the aisle he knew would have just the right thing for his father. He picked out something thoughtful and within his budget, and I couldn't be prouder of him for it.

I remember the first gift picked out and paid for with my own money, money earned, I kid you not, selling seashells to tourists who visited my little beach. For Christmas the year I was nine, I gave my father an address book, a cheap, black, cardboard one with thin pages glued inside. I rode my bike all by myself to MacArthur Drug to pick it out. I thought it was beautiful with ADDRESSES stamped on the front cover in gold letters and gold edging on the pages. He used that book until the day he died, forgoing many prettier, leather ones he was given in later years, ones with heavy cream pages neatly stitched into them.

I have no doubt my husband will feel similarly about the gift the oldest has picked out. I can barely wait to see the box opened, to see the look of well-deserved pride on the oldest's face. It's another milestone reached, this one more sweet than bitter.

Hmm...

I've never actually had a Christmas Pudding. Are they any good? These are at Fresh Market.

Fresh Market