Hope everyone has enjoyed this lovely weekend. Lots of fun on this end!
Friday night started off with a bang! My son, Roman, who works doing the cue cards for Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show and SNL, had a nice surprise for me. He had his first-ever written joke televised. Here’s a pic of Jimmy Fallon doing the “Thank You Notes” from his show. Roman wrote the Activia joke which garnered quite the loud laughs from the audience. Proud Mom Moment for sure! I just wanted to share without sounding braggy!
I’m so proud of my son’s first-ever televised sampling of writing! *sniff* *sniff*. I hope it is the first of many more!
On Saturday, Bonaparte and I were invited to a gathering at my new boss’s home! It was a delightful time, and I was extremely happy to be included in the festivities. I have to say, as new hire, that small gesture of an invite meant a lot to me. It was a form of acceptance—and who doesn’t want to be accepted? Right? It was nice!
I made Momofuku Milk Bar Corn cookies to bring to the party—and a trip back to NYC is needed because my supply of dehydrated corn powder is running low!
A perfect batch. Nice, big and chewy….
I even placed the cookies in nice boxes and tied with a red, white, and blue ribbon!
You know what I also did? I made ice cream. Actually, it was an attempt that proved to be successful. Bonaparte was complaining, as is the nature of his Frenchness, about the sub-par quality of the brands that he gets in the supermarket. He loves ice cream and can enjoy it without worrying about his waistline! Anyway, I made two kinds: Banana and Dulce de Leche. I followed no formal recipe but here’s what I did:
Dulche de Leche: I poured about two cups of heavy cream into a heavy pan that I placed on the stove. Into that I poured about a 1/2 cup of almond milk, two egg yolks, some vanilla and about a cup or a bit more of brown sugar. I cooked it, stirring constantly, but stirring very slow, until it bubbled and thickened. I poured the hot mixture into a plastic Tupperware container and cooled completely before covering and placing in the freezer. The result? Dense and creamy and flavorful ice cream.
Dulce de Leche. The little flecks of vanilla made the flavor more intense. It turned out so creamy and delish!
Banana: I followed the above steps. HOWEVER, I used regular granulated sugar instead of brown sugar. I also mashed up two bananas and added it to the other ingredients then proceeded to cook. The result? Not as “creamy” as the other, but still, extremely dense and flavorful. I have to play with this recipe. Bonaparte loved the dulche de leche and liked the banana. All in all, a success!
Not as dense, but nonetheless, nice banana flavor and very light! But–room for improvement!
Early yesterday morning, a short time after our morning coffee, Bonaparte made a bee-line for the deck. Not a cloud in the sky. The sun, hot but not stifling. All in all, a beautiful morning to just relax, soak in the sun (with sunscreen, of course) and wear off the slight hangover from mixing Kir Royales and red wine of the previous evening’s dinner.
Bonaparte is extremely content to laze on our deck on a dopey looking mattress. The kind you place over those over-priced wicker chaises. He throws a towel over an eye-sore of a padded mattress and basks in the sunshine. (In these summer months I should be referring to him as Le roi-Soleil The Sun King).
Bonaparte, the Sun King. He was not ” ‘eppy” with my snapping this pic but that mattress and the towel. Ugh!
Oh. And he drags this monstrosity to the shore. Yes. He does!
As for me? No can do the mattress on the floor of the deck. We have deck chairs, and we have those folding chairs that we bring to the beach. I’ll throw a towel on the sand, and I’m fine. The pliable sand can conform to my body’s many curves. But, on regular land, I need one of those folding chaise lounges. We didn’t have any.
So—I decided to run to Walmart to buy one. At 9:00 on Sunday morning. The second I got into the car, I realized that Target is just up the road. I figured I could get a nice chaise at Tar-zhay. I was wrong. After heading to the “outdoor” furniture section I was welcomed by empty racks and shelves. Barren of most of their summer items, the area resembled the infamous Lilly Pulitzer roll-out after the first five minutes. And you know what that was like!
Remember THIS from the infamous Lilly Pulitzer for Target rollout? Their summer furniture department resembled this scene! No chaise for me–so onto the chaise chase!
The small choice before me was an overpriced chaise for $79.00. It didn’t even have padding. Much of the time spent at Target was browsing through items that I certainly did not need. A complete waste of time.
Back into the car for the five-minute drive to Walmart.
I arrived at the Walmart at approximately 9:35 AM
I headed to the outdoor section of the store. Abound with outdoor plants, barbeque sets of all sorts, lots of outdoor furniture, both higher end (for Walmart pricing) and affordable, I was confident that my purchase would be complete in no time.
Lo and behold, I found a display of beautiful and inexpensive chaises. I could not keep my eyes off of the one red, tan, and white plaid-ish, old school woven chaise. At $25.00 each, a great buy. I grabbed two. I also remembered that I needed some hair equipment. So off I went to the Walmart beauty aisles.
The very much recalled chaise. There were at least a dozen of them displayed on the floor. This was the only pic I could find. Can you believe this?
Items in cart, I sauntered over to one of the two cashiers whose registers were opened. It was now 9:55 AM.
Quickness is not part of the Walmart culture. After waiting on the line for ten minutes, the cashier, who was very pleasant, scanned my hair items and bagged them. She then went on to scan my chaises. Nothing came up except “Do Not Sell”. I mentioned that perhaps I needed to go to the outdoor area to pay for them. She yelled over to a passing manager. He explained that the chaises were recalled and could not sell them to me.
I told him I found them on display and that I really wanted them because they would match my “deck’s décor” and I promised I would not sue should I become entangled in the chaise.
He said, once again, they were recalled.
Stubborn as I am, I went back to the outdoor area. I may have had my hair items in tow, but I wasn’t leaving that store without my chaises.
I found two more and went on the ever-growing line at the outdoor cashier’s. Again. Quickness is not a part of the Walmart culture. By the time I reached the head of the line, I could have gone through menopause—TWICE!
As luck would have it, once more the “Do Not Sell” came up as Speedy Alka-Seltzer scanned the first chaise. The outdoor manager came over and gave me the same scripted speech that the indoor manager gave me.
Again, I asked “Why do have these on display if they are recalled?” Mr. Rhoades Scholar just gave me a quizzical look—as though I was not too bright for even inquiring.
I then asked, “Well, do you have any inexpensive chaises?” ” Ones that aren’t recalled, perhaps?”
He pointed to the back of the aisle.
In a pile, I found them. Two rather cute little low-to-the-ground chaises. Navy Blue fabric (which seemed more like rubber) with the word “Reserved” displayed in bright white lettering. Thank God those letters didn’t spell out “Recalled”! The steel body of the chaises was painted a bright white as well. Very cute. The pricing $19.96. I purchased two and was on my merry way.
FINALLY! I found two of these chaises that were not labeled “recalled”. Instead, they were labeled “Reserved”. A decent buy at $19.96 each!
What could and should have taken me a half hour tops, took me two hours. I arrived home at 11:00.
Enough time to enjoy an hour of sun time!
And that is how a small part of my Memorial Day weekend was spent!
So let me get move onto my summer essentials—or at least the ones I picked up at Walmart yesterday.
The hair essentials. We all know that summertime can wreak havoc on the hair. I try to pull my hair back and off of my face as much as possible during these heat and humidity filled months.
Tortoise shell clips (faux tortoise shell please!): I picked up this pack of four tortoise shelled clips. If I want to wear my hair down, I’ll still do a “pouf” atop the crown (with the small amount of hair that’s left). Was a time when these clips wouldn’t even hold a handful of my thick hair. Now—they hold plenty.
The faux tortoise shell is a great match for any outfit!
Small bobby pins: When I wear my hair “loosely” pulled back and to the side, these little babies are great for holding strands that would naturally fall from my hair tie in place. The grip is great! Also, and this is by no means something you should do. I happen to use these little pins for applying glue to my fake lashes. I “open” the bobby pin up and use the ends for application. Works like a charm!
A great bargain at $1.96 and more uses than just keeping hair in place!
Black fabric hair ties: I like these because they don’t “pull” on my hair. They are pretty much hair friendly and do a great job of holding the hair in a pony or a bun. The black ones are my favorite because they blend into my own naturally dyed black tresses!
These ribbon elastics are something I’m never without. I’ll even wear one around my wrist–just in case!
Thick hair bands: Also another great way to keep the hair from falling in your face during the hot weather. They are very retro-1960’s and look great when the hair is big and teased!
They also keep the sweat off the face!
Other essentials for summer that I’m not without:
Tight bathing cap: I know. That is so weird, right?—but hear me out. If I go swimming and stay in the water for a really long time, the products I use to cover my hair loss will eventually wash out and I’ll be left with my balding scalp not only for all to gape at, but for the sun to scorch. Putting a bathing cap on not only protects my scalp, but it does keep my hair dry. Trust me, my hair is so incredibly porous that even in the summer months, it takes forever to dry. I would rather be enjoying my time out and about than to be in a bathroom fussing with my hair.
It does protect the hair from the chlorine of the pool and saltiness of the sea!
Sun hat: I purchased this “Skin Cancer Foundation” approved hat shortly after my Mohs surgery. I’ve worn it ever since. It lends itself very well to travel due to its flexibility. It retains its shape after being packed in a suitcase, and it was less than $15.00 at Marshall’s. Hat by Scala. I love it!
I’ve had this for years and love it. Does a great job protecting my scalp and face!
Hair spray: That “halo” of frizz from broken ends surrounding my face and neck sometimes drives me crazy. Especially when I’m aiming for a smooth look with clean lines. Hair spray helps so much. I like it better than gel because you can just finger-comb the spray out. This brand, Lamaur, which I found at Sally Beauty Supply, is on par with El-Net and tons less expensive!
Excellent dupe for El Net.
Fake Tanner: Need I explain further? We all are familiar with my obsession with the fake tanners. Which reminds me. I need a new supply of TanTowels!
A sampling of my self-tanners. Might I add–Ocean Potion Ever Glow is fantastic. It smells like creamsicles!
Sunscreen/block: Fake tanners don’t protect from the sun. My supply of sunscreen grows from year to year. I like to have enough on hand just in case others may “forget” to bring theirs!
Sunscreen on parade! You can never have too much!
Deodorant: during the summer months, I truly like to carry a travel-sized deodorant in my purse. Those super-hot days—well, sometimes that morning application of deodorant just isn’t enough. Know what I mean?
A permanent fixture in my beach bag–and my summer purses!
My favorite beach bag: Oh boy. I’ve had this super-strength roomy beach bag for years. The beautiful madras plaid fabric used to be so vibrant and deep. However, the sun, the beach, the salt water has taken a toll and faded the fabric. This was probably the best purchase I’ve ever made from J. Crew. Ever!
As a sucker for madras plaid, I HAD to have this the second I spotted it. It has been used on a continuous basis. I LOVE this bag!
The flip-flops and slides: While I realize that a great many people think flip-flops are vulgar and disgusting, I’m a fan. First of all, my feet are always well-groomed and the narrowness of my feet (the only part of my body that is narrow) makes me a perfect candidate for this sort of footwear. Plus, it’s the next best thing to being barefoot! They are comfy and allow my feet to breathe and enjoy the great out-of-doors!
Some of my summer footwear……
..and more that I keep by the front door!
Summer is also a time that I don’t pile on the face makeup. I rarely wear foundation. Being in the sun (with sunscreen) brings out my freckles and I like them! I just do the brows, line the eyes, apply a couple of coats of mascara, wipe a clear gloss over the lips and I’m done.
Minimal makeup and my favorite summer hat. Do you like my hat? (remember that line from one of my favorite books of all time “Go Dog Go”?)
So here’s to the end of a fantastic and fun-filled first official weekend of the summer! And let’s not forget our servicemen and women who have fought to protect us and our country! Thank you veterans!
American cemetery in Normandy, France. I took this photo a couple of years back. It was a moving experience and I thank those who selflessly gave their lives for you and me!
Now that I’m in a grove with the new job, I’ll be posting, once again, on a regular basis! Thanks for your patience everyone! XOXOXOXOXOXOXO!
Here’s one of my favorite lazy summer songs–“Summer” by War! Enjoy!