Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Barb and John's spice life

Barb emailed me after I admitted I didn't make The Mansion soup. Get ready for this:

I read your blog and want you to know we have a lifetime supply of saffron. John's daughter sent us a $50.00 gift certificate to Zingerman's a few years ago and John spent the whole amount on SARFFRON! We can gladly spare a 1/4 teaspoon! You know you can always count on us for strange and unusual ingredients!

Only Barb. I'm going to call her and pick up some saffron tomorrow on the way home from Mom's. What do you bet she's made the soup and on to other recipes already.

You know Mother has dementia, but old memories are good for her. So I'll be telling her about trying out the recipe now that Barb's giving me saffron.

First I'll get the look. Then I can tell you her response, "My Darling Lottie Kate, you've tried and tried. You have absolutely not talent for cooking. Bob doesn't mind that you don't cook. Your child managed to grow up healthy on McDonald's happy meals. Your aunts and I can't figure out why you don't leave a good thing alone? It would be best for all." How sad is that?

But Bob is not that lucky and for some reason I keep trying. One of Bob's best friends always give me cooking lessons when we visit him in Malibu. His motto for me is, "If you can weld, you can cook." Well, not yet, Daniel. Guess we need to come out for another visit/cooking lesson.

Here's a picture of Load #2 pea gravel I had to unload today and spread in the area Andie wants my new fountain. She and Cynthia came over at 7:00 this morning to meet my yard guys and tell them where to move stuff. I could hardly get out of bed after all the shoveling yesterday. Then Miss Bubbly Morning Person shows up and even calm sweet Cynthia had had her java and was happy. I hate happy bubbly people, but I really hate happy bubbly people at ungodly hours like 7:00 am. When they FINALLY left about 7:00 I went back to bed and stayed until 11:00. Thank goodness tho I'm married to a morning person he's quiet. He even sends out early emails with no sound. What a prince.


Monday, September 28, 2009

I didn't make the soup

I had the ingredients, the recipe and the pots. No guts, not glory. Just didn't seem worth it when I knew it would be terrible. So I cooked scrambled eggs. Same results, terrible, but at least I know Bob will eat terrible scrambled eggs. I pushed them around my plate.

Spent the day with Andie. Can you say world wind? She let me borrow the Mad Cow truck so we could go get me some pea gravel. She bailed when it came to shovel the pea gravel out of the truck and into the hole in the ground that use to be our hot tub. My arms hurt so bad I can barely type.

So I'll say night night.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Soup is smooth perfection

Two out of three times when Barb serves one of her creations at her house or brings something to a gathering we all go crazy over it and ask about the recipe. Sometimes she'll say, "got the recipe out of the newspaper".

This Thursday's paper had a corn and saffron soup from The Mansion sous-chef, Eric Brandt. Sounds delicious, Bob and I love soup and we had the tiny weeny cold snap, so I decided to try the recipe.

To Tom Thumb. We have shopping choices, but where is anyone as nice to us as Tom Thumb? Plus, Starbucks is almost next door, a perfect excuse to get the pumpkin frappicino with extra whipped cream they only serve this time of year.

I asked several people about a couple of ingredients - saffron threads and poblano pepper. Got the pepper, no problem, but couldn't find the saffron threads. Went back one last time to seasonings and a lady was stocking the seasonings and of course knew saffron threads.. She found it and went, Whoa! Before you take it, it's $18.95. The jar looked like it had two are three little sprigs of ??? inside. Nope. Well, of course this why it's a Mansion dish. Going to try it tonight - sans saffron threads.

I happened to have the TV on earlier. Jan told me Julia Child is on PBS on Saturdays so I searching for Julia Child. She and I are becoming so close. Would you believe she was making soups with that little guy and she put in saffron threads? Did I tell you we're buds?

For the recipe go to: Dallas Morning News and type in - Soup is smooth perfection. If 3 or 4 of us do this we could split an $18.95 jar of saffron threads.

After a year of serving this to Bob once a week, I'll feel comfortable enough to invite Barb and John over for a bowl. Check out Barb's blog to learn more about her giant cucumbers.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Nuns at the Fair

So sweet Juli stays with me till the very end tonight. Only two signs left to place are for my guitar pieces at the Women's Museum garden. Sweet Juli drives me there in her car. We put the sign up while lots of women exit the museum. See here's one of Texas' great flaws. They don't make nuns dress up like penguins like they do in South Louisiana and Europe. When we're in Europe, Ronnie, knowing I'm afraid of nuns, always says out of the side of his mouth, "Penguins on your left flank". I glance over and see black and white coming towards me and turn and run.

Tonight when we were told they were all nuns, I wanted to run. Even tho raised Methodist in New Iberia, on Tuesdays mornings we had catachism (sp?) during public shool hours. Not the best behaved student, my knuckles took about a week to heal from the rapping and then catachism (?) class again. The Methodist may have been a boring lot, but no one every rapped me.

Anyway, Juli wants to explain to the nuns how much they love her. I'm like screaming in my head, GET IN THE CAR JULIE, they probably have hidden rulers in their pockets. She starts to tell them again and I did scream GET IN THE CAR JULIE. Then she wants to tell me about her and the nuns, not knowing my phobia. I love her, but I'm going to have to make her a list of things that scare me and explain - we don't stand our ground when I'm scared - WE RUN.

A dear friend once told me, we can blame all that religion swirling together when we were little on the way we turned out. I really like that.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Dallas County Master Gardeners

Guess What Guess What???

Katrina, neighbor and garden club girlfriend, is on the Dallas County Master Gardeners tour and she asked if she could borrow my big dragonfly for the tour. The name of her garden is "Dragonfly Cove". Is this too cool for school???????

Read more: http://www.examiner.com/x-15499-Dallas-Gardening-Humor-Examiner~y2009m9d23-Fall-art-and-garden-events

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Cool weather during final installation

Thank goodness we had cool weather today. Maybe fall will really happen? Sometimes during the 100 degrees I truly don't think it will happen.

Much fun today during installation. Everyone telling everyone how great they are. Check out my website for today's slideshow: www.lottieminick.com.

These two are so much fun, no wonder they just met and are already laughing together.

This is Wayne, Staci's brother in law. Wait till you see his pieced. Big Tex's Rolex. Fabulous. Course I can say that about all of them.

Juli's tree, like all of them, you've got to see in person. You won't believe it.

Two days and counting to the Great State Fair of Texas.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Installation day at the State Fair

We installed a bunch of artists today. Most who needed forklifts were installed last week. Totems were the art of the day. Had big time fun. Last year was different because we had all 45 artists show up on one night. Because I email to me and bcc all the artists everyone was excited to see artists they didn't know were participating. Of course this year, we have only 3 artists who couldn't make it and the new artists most everyone knew. So though there wasn't the surprise, there was the fun. Some installed easily and some had problems and frustrations, but all got installed and we are looking fabulous.

I took 53 pictures. Spent way too much time finally getting them in an album on my website. I know there's a way to put a slide show or album on Examiner.com, but Miss Computer Stupid can't figure that out tonight. So check my website www.lottieminick.com for cool pictures on the last page of the site - Albums 2.

Cynthia and Andie, my Installer Queens got there early since I had an Arboretum meeting. Everything was under control when I got there. Oh, those efficient Queens.

Rebecca, a dear as always. Saw a flash of Rusty. Guess he knew we had it under control, or knew Rebecca did. Tomorrow we get everyone else installed and State Fair of Texas, here we come.

Here's my piece - Tic Tac Heart - located in the museum fountain across from the Old Mill Restaurant. Really should be called the Bob Minick fountain. As Cynthia, Andie and I were leaving it was all lit up with the twinkle lights. Bob's designed a lot of great things at the State Fair and other amusement parks, but I love that fountain best, especially at night.

Don't miss my last article on examiner.com:


Installation Queens

First there were the Grouting Queens and now the Installation Queens. Cynthia and Andie called and asked when I'd be ready to install yesterday. I said, "Four o'clock, no problem." They arrived at 4 on the dot and I was still cleaning the hearts. They came back at 5:00, Cynthia with her SUV packed with her piece and Andie with her empty cow truck. I filled up the truck, my car was already packed with more and off we went. We were installed in two hours. Today The Installation Queens and I install most of the artists at the State Fair. Gonna be a fun day.

Here's the girls with Cynthia's fabulous piece.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Grout Queens.

The Grout Queens came over to save the day today. Cynthia has offered dozens of times to help me finish my two pieces for the State Fair of Texas. Miss Big Shot always said, "No I can handle it." Even after being outside until 4:00 last night.

The Grout Queens called and said they were coming. They knew I wouldn't call them. Thank goodness they barreled their way over. Within 3 hours they were done. I hung around bringing buckets of clean water. Wrapping the pieces in newspaper to keep grout off. Bringing the queens water and ice tea. I offered them some ibuprofin tablets. I've been eating them like candy, but they declined. The hearts were beautiful when they finished grouting. Lynn said, "Grout is your friend." I said, "Grout is not my friend, I have rely on The Grout Queens."

I really can't believe these pieces are nearly done. They told me to go to Home Depot and by a special grout sealer. They left me some 0000 steel wool to clean the glass tiles, then I spray on the sealer, then scrub again. That's tomorrow morning.

Elizabeth is now working for Lynn on Fridays doing estate sales. Let's me make a plug for Lynn's company, Just Let Lynn Do It. She moves people to assisted living centers and other moves, plus wonderful estate sales. Everyone loves her, she let me listen to a voice mail of a customer singing her praises. She will certainly move me. That won't be easy since she'll have to dynamite me out of this neighborhood.

Need I say again, both sisters are The Grout Queens. As Lynn put it so sweetly, "We came in and saved you last year, now it's a tradition." True - but still so appreciated.

We went to Starbucks after, my treat. I had a $100 bill, no purse and no other money. Starbucks couldn't break it. Would you believe the Starbucks girls said, "Just bring us money when you can." How lovely. Course Lynn said, "It's not like they don't know you here." True I am an addict, but still nice. Sissy could change my hundred so I walked back in and paid. What a sisterhood day!

Then Lynn told me about a little turtle who needed a home. Do I have someone for this turtle? Remember Bobbi, the turtle lady? I've already emailed her she has a new baby.

Read about Bobbi and her turtles again:


3:00 am rants

It's 3:00 am and I'm waiting for a process to dry a bit before going back outside to my shop and more work. While I'm working I'm figuring out excuses for why I'll be the only person on the list of artists who doesn't have a piece in the sculpture show.

I'm a blithering idiot. I know the State Fair of Texas begins the last week of September. Happens every year no matter what. February is perfect welding weather. Am I out there making a piece for the Fair? Nope, putzin' around day dreaming while rummaging through my metal, pretending I'm cleaning up my shop and the back yard. Not.

This year I planned to do 3 pieces. I did finish one. But Bob was out of town and instead of waiting for his return to ask him out to make this piece move I decided to plow ahead. It moves, a little. Here's the cute part, you can lift up the moving part and take it home with you as a parting gift from the Fair. Had Bob been home and I asked him how to make this piece move, he would have figured out how it could move. But Bob would think ahead and design the piece someone walking by could NOT lift up and take home. So scratch that piece for the Fair.

The other two pieces I kept putting off finishing because of the rain. Like metal melts? Like I melt?

Earlier tonight Bob said, "Take a break, perhaps clean up a bit and I'll take you to Mi Cocina." Great, except clean up a "bit?" - I needed someone to hose me down. The restaurant was busy, but we were seated pretty fast. When I squeezed the lemon for my ice tea every cut on my hands from days of cutting glass SCREAMED. The rest of the evening was lovely. Home and back to glass cutting. I spend nearly as much time cleaning up blood as cutting glass.

Now here I sit waiting. Do you know what's on TV at 3:00 am? Infomercials. What's scary is I think I really might need that weird curling iron with the red light inside it. Maybe I better go back outside. Night night

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Barb and Oprah

Barb called while I was out in the rain mosaicing my hearts. Then she emailed the following to the garden club. I've emailed it to the world.

Well, not Oprah herself but one of her producers called a while ago to ask me if I was the Barbara Michaels who grew the large Texas sized cucumbers! The article that Lottie wrote for the examiner a few weeks back somehow made it to the folks at Harpo! Seems they are thinking about doing a show about the Texas State Fair - they would come here and do the show onsite. She said they had heard that the fair was a lot of fun - she even knew about the fried butter. I certainly encouraged her to "come on down"!

She wanted to know all about our garden club and wanted to know if anyone else grew large vegetables. I had her call Mike Schmitt. Can you think of anyone else who had an unusual veggie this year? I think it is that Texas thing about growing the biggest! I told her about the sculpture garden at the fair and Lottie and about my blue ribbon for the relish. She asked how many times I will go to the fair and I said at least three times - with my grandchildren, my knitting friends, and my garden club! We will see if they show up. What fun that would be! Isn't the interent amazing????


Here is the famous article by Lottie if you haven't read it!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Women's Museum, sculptures in the garden during the State Fair

Kronda, from Green Meadows Landscaping has the gardens in front of the

got together and
Women's Museum. I went to meet Kronda there today. Rebecca suggested my pieces in Kronda's garden because during the Fair and I think a while after the museum features Girls That Rock Music Festival.

Kronda was asking me about the guitar/keyboard totem footprint in the garden, because she and her crew were ready to plant. I suggested I go get the totem and install so they could plant around it. OK. Brought my camera, but it stayed in my pocket. Then she showed me where she's going to put the guitar/keyboard sculpture. Right in front of the fountain in front of the museum.

Thank you, Rebecca, for thinking of my pieces for the front of the museum. Thank you, Kronda, for taking Rebecca up on her suggestion.

Monday, September 14, 2009


It's amazing to me that the area where we had Bob's old office is now "Uptown". Back in the day it was just coming out of grungy. Bob had to go to Agel for art supplies today. I talked him into waiting until after I slurried my hearts on my State Fair pieces so I could go with him. I love any form of cement.

Agel's always a several hundred dollar trip, so I may as well go along and get a few goodies.

After, we were looking for a late lunch place. Why bother discussing? Let's go to our old time favorite seafood place S & D Oyster. Bob and I love how the place never changes. I love how S & D looks like every upscale restaurant of my youth in New Iberia, New Orleans and surrounding cities. Talk about comfort food and comfort place. Delicious as usual.

Public Enemies and Cindi's

Bob and I went to see Public Enemies. I know we're a little behind in our movie going, but the rainy day said, "Go to the movies?" Noticed Public Enemies at the dollar movie. We even made it to the (3:45) which meant an actual dollar a ticket not $1.75 for the later movie.

I forgot to sneak in some packaged crackers and a drink. Refuse to pay movie popcorn and drink prices even when the movie is only a dollar. So after we were going thru our usual argument: Where do you want to eat - I don't care - Where do you want to eat - I'll go anywhere you'd like. And on and on. Then Bob suggested a pastrami sandwich at Cindi's. Perfect, but what if they close early on Sunday? We couldn't remember. Drive out there, while dreaming of their mouth watering pastrami sandwich and then the closed sign on? But no, the pastrami gods were with us. And the pastrami was the taste and texture one only dreams about.


I harassed the owner of Cindi's for years to open in Casa Linda. Now we have The Broken Egg which is nice, but no pastrami sandwiches. She missed out, but we all missed out more.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Just finished The Big Rich. Great book. Years ago I read The Three Families of H.L. Hunt. Pretty fascinating. I got both by requesting them from the Dallas Public Library. Requesting the latest books or any book is such a treat. I once requested a book by a lady in waiting to the last Czarina of Russia. The book had been out of print for years. Took a while, but the library found it. Another great read. I'm especially fond of biographies.

Now I'll start reading James Lee Burke's Rain Gods. One of my favorite all time authors, again a Dallas Public Library requested book.

But I'm worried. With the city cutting back the library hours they are obviously cutting back on funds for new books, too. I requested John Sandford's latest, Rough Country and Michael Connelly's latest, Nine Dragons. They showed zero of zero available. Not good.

Requesting books is such a treat. I hope the library funds are the last to be cut. Maybe someone will start a petition.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Pretty Gardens

Happened to be in the Preston Hollow area of town last week and had my camera. Stopped to take a picture of the this house's beautiful landscaping. Both pictures are of same house. I wonder if they do "Yard Of The Month" like we do here in Forest Hills?

Don't forget to check out Lottie Logic by clicking on a couple of my articles on Examiner.com.


Friday, September 11, 2009

Forest Hills Garden Club

The Forest Hills Garden Club kicked off the new year at Barb's house last night and we look fabulous as you can see here. Barb and Abbie provided delicious food including Barb's recently won State Fair of Texas blue ribbon salsa made with her giant cucumbers like the one Judy's holding. This was Cynthia's first meeting. I know she wants to be a member, but it didn't hurt her first meeting was at Barb's. She's been hearing about John and Barb's house forever. I graciously invited John to come with me to give the tour of his house. John is only official Garden Club Guy.

After business part of the program Barb explained how she preserves flowers and leaves and showed us examples of her framed and in progress pieces. She even makes cards with pressed flowers. One, a large caladium leaf looks almost antiqued.

Maggie, first on the left, visited because she wants to start a garden club in her neighborhood. along with our Animal Alert program, I guess we are becoming a prototype for garden clubs, too. As Barb, our heart of the garden club says, "We're not your mother's garden club."

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Friday Plant Of The Week

Don't miss Friday Plant of the Week on Examiner.com

Of course, there's a mention of the upcoming State Fair of Texas sculpture show

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Mac Attack

Is the postman bringing you Mac magazines, Mac catalogs, etc? (We have the nicest postman in Dallas. Kathleen and I talk about him all the time.) Is a speech by Stephen Jobs more interesting than the President's on the same day. They you're Apple people like us.

James Randall got his iphone today and I didn't bring my camera. He brought friends for the occasion. We were a group at the AT&T store.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Dallas Arboretum's Southern Artisan's Market

Today I'm writing about the Southern Artisan's Market because Joy asked me to chair the show at the Dallas Arboretum. How exciting for me. Scheduled for Saturday and Sunday October 10 and 11th, maybe just maybe we will be having tolerable or even cool weather. Let's not get crazy and just hope for tolerable.

The Arboretum only gets better and better as these pictures show. And here's some pictures of artist's work. Mark your calendars. You can attend this even though it's during the State Fair of Texas.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Fabulous Dallas houses

I'm reading The Big Rich, by Bryan Burrough, The Rise and the Fall of the Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes. Really good read. The Three Families of H.L. Hunt is next.

Front Burner blog keeps me up to date daily. Today I noticed the 100 most expensive homes in Dallas listed and clicked looking for a Hunt House. Wouldn't you love to get invited? Bob and I attended a soiree at the Baron House a while back. I tried to pull a picture off their website for you, couldn't. One of the powder rooms is wallpapered in little tiny shells. I said WALLPAPERED - the little outer room and the powder room itself. I like to mosaic, but that commission would have put me in away. Simply beautiful. I went back 3 times without worrying what people thought about my bathroom habits.

My darling Bob escorted the art girlfriends and me to another soiree at the Rachofsky House. (White house pictured.) The house is magnificent and the art inside and out incredible. If you like to get cozy and snuggle this is not the house for you.

The houses listed on d magazine's blog start at around 45 million and have thousands and thousands of square feet. One listing noted how much water the house used - made me think.

Sen. John Carona's house was listed. How can we get invited to a fund raiser at his house? Be worth it to wander around. OK, I admit I love looking in houses and going to open houses just to see inside. Mount Vernon's on my list, especially after visiting Bella Nora, directly across White Rock Lake. I'll carry your purse if you get an invitation. You'll need to be hands free for all the delicious hors d'oeuvres.

Don't miss Monday's article on Examiner.com. I have no idea what the topic will be, probably something made up in my head.

Check out www.lottieminick.com for last year's sculptures at the State Fair of Texas. Soon the new 2009 sculptures will be on.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Tic Tac Hearts

Here's the beginning of my State Fair piece I'm going to put in the Museum Fountain garden bed. You know I call this the Bob Minick Fountain because it's just one of Bob's wonderful designs at the Fair. I took them to Crosslink McKinney powder coaters and they colored my metal green, orange and purple. I'm going to put a mosaic heart in the middle of each tic tac toe and name the piece Tic Tac Hearts.
My totem is stacking tic tac toes like these.

One more piece will go in the Discovery Gardens where we had the butterfly release Thursday night.

While we were wandering around the Women's Expo I showed Andie and Cynthia this moving rock piece I'd love to make into a giant piece. I doubt if I can figure it out by Sculpture Show install date, but you never know.

Did anyone try those butterfly recipes I recommended last post? Who knew this could turn into a cooking blog.

Don't forget to go to Examiner.com for more Facts, Fantasy and Foibles on whatever shiny subject catches my eye. Go to www.lottieminick.com for last year's State Fair Sculpture Show pictures.

Friday, September 4, 2009

More Discovery Garden news

Another great view from the elevated walkway in the butterfly house. Then the butterfly farmer, Dale Clark, and the lovely lady with him. I've lost her card, but she use to run the Discovery Gardens and now coordinates all the various groups at Susan G. Komen. I'm sure I'll find her card as soon as I post this.

Here's the smiling faces of the wonderful volunteers with their cute t-shirts. They made the evening delightful.

Here's a few butterfly recipes. I don't cook, but I really can't imagine butterflies can be tasty?


Check out the following for more fun reading:





Thursday, September 3, 2009

Discovery Garden's butterfly house

Thursday, September 3rd at 6:00 pm the “swells” turned out for the VIP cocktail reception for the Rosine Smith Sammons Butterfly House and Insectarium presented by the Texas Discovery Gardens. After speeches, cocktails and hors d’oeuvres; the “swells” climbed the stairs to the three story glassed area where they all received their own butterfly in a small envelope.

On the count of three envelopes opened and Monarchs, Painted Ladies, Peacocks, Viceroys and Tiger Swallowtails flew. Butterflies landed on flowers, hands and noses. Only two known fatalities resulted from overzealous clapping.

The Discovery Gardens will also host sculptors participating in the State Fair Sculpture show this year. Don’t forget to walk through the gardens and discover the sculptures. You might find a fabulous mosaic flamingo by Fascinating Flamingo Artist, Staci Whitten. The State Fair of Texas opens September 25th.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

More Women's Expo Exhibitors

The Womens Expo had so many great exhibitors. You might want to check these two out. Beijo bags were beautiful and Touchstone Crystals offered more than just the products, opportunities. Click and find out.

And don't forget for more fun and fantasy always go to: Examiner.com and read my garden humor articles.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Go Sticky - Lint Rollers

More Women's Expo happenings. Here's the Go Sticky - Lint Rolls. The lady in the booth even had an extension so you roll your floor. How cool is that. There were so many products we all really should have.