About the writer

Writer, blogger, photographer, breast cancer survivor. I write about whatever strikes my fancy as I meander through life.

pen & pencil

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It started innocently enough. I wanted an answer to a question I had.

As a parent, I am newer to the game that a lot of people out there. And I am a step-parent. My instincts are good, but I simply haven’t been at it as long as other parents.

I had noticed even last year with our child that I didn’t feel the teachers had kids using a pen enough. Of course, the only basis for comparison I have are what I see my friends’ and family’s children doing, or my own personal experience. And my personal experience is different because I spent most of my life going to private school. I was using pens in fourth grade to learn calligraphy – of course I am dating myself here because that was back when there was actual penmanship still!

I asked my child what the deal with pens versus pencils was and he said “all the kids his pencil.”

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I asked a mom I know who had a child in my child’s class and she shared with me that even her child who was older and farther along in high school still basically used pencil for everything.

pie plates

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Yes I roll out my own piecrust. I don’t like a lot of the modern pie plates. I use vintage pie plates.

Yes, here again is my pitch for the vintage kitchen: The glass pie plates that were made by Pyrex and Anchor Hocking are terrific . I have a bunch that were probably produced in the 1950s and 60s. One was my grandmother’s.

My favorite of these pie plates are the deep dish variety – the edges are sort of ruffled and the pie plates have little handles. I also have the plain glass ones that are more shallow, and a couple of the Wear-Ever aluminum pie plates. And you can find them in different sizes too.

These pie plates are everywhere. Thrift shops, church sales, barn sales, your neighbor cleaning out their kitchen cupboards.

These pie plates are not expensive, and I think pies bake better in them. I know pies look better in them. You can easily put a pre-made roll out piecrust into one of these plates as well if you don’t make your own crust.

I tend to pick these up when I find them because a lot of times when I take pies to other people’s homes for dinner or holidays the pie plates don’t come back. I have been finding a lot of these pie plates at the Smithfield Barn in Downingtown. I also found one last year at Angel Fest at St. Paul’s in Exton which is coming soon! (See this link for further information)

Anyway, I am really not a 1950s housewife in disguise. It’s just that some of these vintage kitchen items are better made than what we have today. Besides, a little kitsch in your kitchen never hurt anyone!

Enjoy your day!

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vintage kitchen linens

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One of the things I love to have in my kitchen are fun and sometimes funky linen kitchen towels. They aren’t for display, I use them.

I prefer the vintage kitchen towels because often the material is a better quality than you will find today and the price is right. I generally don’t go above five dollars a towel.

I find them at church sales, barn sales, garage sales, and so on. If they are stained or have holes I don’t bring them home, but you will often find these towels in miscellaneous linen piles. A lot of times they were purchased as souvenirs on trips or were hostess gifts which were never used.

They are fun and colorful!

coffee talk: gourmesso

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So I am an Espresso maniac. I make it old school in the stove top pot, but I do love my Nespresso machine. I am a purist and I do not drink flavored coffees or espressos. The flavored coffees and espressos leave a metallic taste in my mouth. I like the straight bean varietals.

What I do not like about my Nespresso machine is how expensive the name brand Nespresso capsules are. So I have been trying different brand compatible capsules again. I have discovered yet another brand. It is called Gourmesso.

Gourmesso describes themselves as “Italian passion for coffee, combines with German Ingenuity”. At first that made me giggle as I had visions of an Alpha Romeo with a Mercedes Benz engine. However, I had their espresso yesterday for the first time and oh my, it’s not just good. It’s excellent.

The capsules arrive in little boxes and are vacuum packed in little foil packets, a few to each packet. Yesterday I had “Bolivia Pura Mezzo“. My first cup was a straight shot of espresso (pictured above). It was deep and rich and smooth and flavorful. It had that real espresso taste.

And the Gourmesso capsules fit the machine well. I had a second cup that was more my normal Café au lait or cappuccino style – I admit it I have a milk frother and warmer too- Nespresso Aeroccino Plus. (Normally I only have one cup of coffee, this coffee is good enough to tempt me to two!)

I haven’t decided what flavor I am trying this morning. You can order straight from their website www.gourmesso.com and their capsules are on Amazon.com as well. Their capsules start at around $0.45 per capsule. That is a much better deal than Nespresso brand capsules which start at $0.65 per capsule for the traditional capsules.

Ok well I am off to find coffee! Try Gourmesso and let me know what you think!

Thanks for stopping by!

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political turn-offs

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All yes the season has arrived. Not fall, but the season where we open our mailboxes to far too many political mailers. There is no subtlety involved as it is an almost daily barrage from both parties. My position is, save a tree don’t flood my mailbox. I also am of the mindset that I prefer not to get my email inundated either.

Today we received a giant expensive multi–page glossy mailer mailer from the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee. For Manan Trivedi.

Now I have met Dr. Trivedi, and I found him to be a very nice person, but he’s not the person to represent me. I did not feel when I lived in Montgomery County that a man who was from Berks County could really represent my interests in Congress. I still feel that way as a Chester County resident.

I also want to rid myself early of all the glossy mailers that are going to clog up my mailbox and recycle bin. So since it is September and this is my first one I called up the campaign number listed on the glossy mailer. The lady who answered the phone at 484-329-7907 could not have been more pleasant. But some guy who must’ve been her supervisor decided he wanted to speak to me. I’m not going to publicly shame this person because everybody deserves a chance and I respect people that want to work on campaigns and I know it’s tough. But I will say that somebody else should take calls from now on, this gentleman should not be on the phone.

I tried to explain to this guy why Dr. Trivedi was not a candidate for me. I also tried to explain to this guy why I don’t want to receive these mailers. I did say to him however if he really wants his candidate to have a good showing in Chester County, a public position on things like the Sunoco pipeline and eminent domain would be of interest to Chester County voters.

He then tells me how they went to a couple community meetings and they were “looking into it.” Since March, no less. I said what is there to keep looking into? I asked if his candidate was in favor of eminent domain? Does his candidate understand our fears about these pipelines and what they could do that legitimately terrifies residents out here? I asked if his candidate understood how a lot of us were on wells and how scary an idea that is when somebody’s talking about fracking and putting pipelines through communities along with potential dangers to all natural water sources and wildlife?

If you want a topic that has grabbed hold of Chester County residents regardless of political party this is it, right? He decides he then wants to tell me all about Ryan Costello and Ryan Costello’s flaws.

I didn’t call them to debate the other candidate. I also don’t like to be talked down to by a campaign office. And I completely abhor people who use poor grammar on the telephone and tell me that they are a Montgomery county resident and he understands how I feel. I live in Chester County, you couldn’t possibly understand how I feel as a Chester County resident, so unfortunately that attempt at political empathy fell far short.

I did tell him that I feel sorry for political candidates because of the gerrymandering which has occurred in the 6th Congressional District of Pennsylvania over the past years. But when push comes to shove, I want someone more local to me to represent me in Congress if I can get it. And while I might find someone to be a very pleasant person, it doesn’t that I find them to be the best candidate for the job to serve my needs as a Chester County resident.

I will be blunt, I also find Obamacare a hot mess. I feel the last few years of national politics have been embarrassing at times for any American no matter what political persuasion you are. When it comes to Federal level politics, you very rarely get the opportunity to vote for the “local” guy. And my local guy is Ryan Costello. And I will vote for him gladly. But because I think Dr. Manan Trivedi is a nice person, I think his campaign offices need an education.

I see no problem with people being excited and very supportive of their particular candidate for whom they are working. But they need to adopt more of a “the customer is right” attitude. They need to learn the subtle art of turning people to their position without getting irritated on the phone. After all, there are quite a few weeks between now and election day. And I won’t be the only phone call their offices receive.

I have decided that one of the things that is going to make me decide on candidates this fall is what kind of a position do they take about pipelines and gas companies like Sunoco in Pennsylvania? How do these candidates feel about eminent domain? In mid-September, a candidate’s political office should not still be saying that the candidate is looking into something. They should have a position and be able to clearly state it for the candidate. The Wolf gubernatorial campaign, for example, is very clear on where they stand about pipelines. And I can tell you quite honestly, I can’t good conscience vote for Tom Corbett a second time. Especially given all the donations he gets from oil companies, right?

I might be a Republican, but I do believe in a two-party system. I am also an inveterate ticket splitter. But a two-party system in Chester County is also about 17 shades of ridiculous once again thanks to the infighting of the Democratic Party of Chester County. Truthfully, to that end, I actually feel sorry for the Trivedi campaign because as a Democrat candidate he and other Democrat candidates may very well be tainted by the same brush that is the in-fighting in Democratic politics right now in Chester County.

Thanks for stopping by today. Save a tree by asking candidates for political office not to send piles of glossy mailers out. And if you are a Chester County resident, please ask your candidates offices where they stand on pipelines and eminent domain.

kimberton/phoenixville barn sale sept. 19 and 20

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I know nothing about this sale or the folks throwing it, I just saw it posted on Chester County Community Online Yard Sale on Facebook and decided to share.

Again, not my sale, just looks like fun!

Here is what they posted – and they did NOT post a house number, so I guess you drive and look for signs. This road is off of Cold Stream Road, which is off of Charlestown Road.

BARN SALE
Friday September 19 from 12-5
Saturday September 20 from 9-3 Vintage~Antique~Household Vintage beds~Double four poster bed & iron full sized bed
Vintage wicker~ rockers, head board, cupboards, lamp
Vintage furniture~wooden church pew, wooden rocker, occasional chairs, 2 sets of dining room chairs, woven table, magazine holder, inlaid table, hutch, youth chair, children’s chairs & more furniture
*****
Vintage Linens & Quilts
Vintage Silver plate pieces
Antique Andirons & Lighting
Vintage Suitcase, Royal typewriter
Brass Lamps~ Milk Glass Lamps
Lighting by Design Antique Brass Pendant Lamp
Milk Bottles, Irish Pottery
Vintage Cast Iron Skillets, Muffin tins, Pots
Milk Glass, Old Bottles, Pyrex, Anchor Hocking
Vintage Hummels, sets of Dishes, & individual China
*****
Gallery Collection~ Wine Rack & Inlaid Table
Japanese Porcelain Cala Lily Mirror
Gallery framed Paintings & Prints
LLadro collectables, Franklin Mint
Vintage Sword
*****
Collectibles~Teddies & Native American Dolls
Large Collection of vintage Niagara Falls items
Baskets~ vintage & new including Longaberger
Sterling & costume jewelry
*****
Brand new large Delsey Rolling Suitcase
New glass side table, art books, coffee table books
Waldorf dolls & other children’s items
Christmas decorations, needlepoint pillows
Lovely items gathered from multiple homes
Follow signs back to our barn and park there
We will have signs out front
Hares Hill Road in Kimberton
(to map: use Phoenixville 19460)
Rain or Shine

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