Posts made in August, 2014

Via dell’Amore

Posted by on Aug 29, 2014 in New | 1 comment

Manarola Dreaming

I promised him I would return...

♥ xococo ♥

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Make a Joyful Noise

Posted by on Aug 27, 2014 in Breakfast and Brunch | 0 comments

School began for Madelynne today;

how can she be a junior in high school?

Yesterday, I was thinking about my mother and her sweet Sour Cream Coffee Cake, which appeared when the “Church Ladies” reunited in September for Bible Study and prayer circles.








Her go-to sweet to share was a pantry staple of everything white; embellished with luxurious pecans. I am guessing the recipe traveled from her home in Ohio.








Combine the butter with sugar; add the eggs, and vanilla.








Plop in the sour cream and combine.








Scoop the dry ingredients but don’t over mix.








Lastly, add buttermilk around the edge of the rotating bowl.








Prepare the strudel topping. The recipe calls for granulated sugar, I perfer brown.








Spoon 2/3rds of the batter into a prepared pan.  Mom used a 9x13-inch dish; I divvied it into two pie dishes so one could go to the office with MP. The strudel is added evenly before dotting the remaining batter over all.























Serve warm








Mom, could you whisper into your great grandson’s baby sized ear and tell him it is time to make a joyful noise?

Sour Cream Coffee Cake


  • 1 cup butter (1 stick)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 cups flour
  • Strudel Topping
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 Tablespoons butter


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cream butter with sugar; add eggs one at a time; add sour cream, and vanilla;
  2. Sift dry ingredients together; add to creamed mixture; mix at low speed while pouring the milk around the edge of the bowl just until combined. Spread 2/3rds of the batter onto a greased 9 x13 inch baking pan.
  3. Make a paste of the strudel ingredients. Sprinkle strudel mixture over batter; dot with remaining batter. Bake 25- 30 minutes or until done. Cool and cut into serving pieces.


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The Long Gray Line…

Posted by on Aug 25, 2014 in New | 4 comments


Guest blogger, MP

Two years ago, Skylar moved in to our neighborhood. When we discovered she was a Junior Guard, she asked us about the Gray Lunde Junior Lifeguard Ironman. Her older brother and mother advised her to skip the event as too difficult, but we remarked that big tasks are all accomplished with small steps. At the Balboa, finish line a very weary but joyful Skylar announced that she had finished the Ironman. This year we received this note a week after the 2014 Gray Lunde Ironman. She is wearing the yellow cap in the photo."Just go through it."

So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God.

There we will receive his mercy,

and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.

Hebrews 4:16 (NLT)



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Waiting for a Baby

Posted by on Aug 22, 2014 in Breakfast and Brunch | 1 comment

My brother, Bill, and Cynthia are here to stay until their new baby grandson is born.

This morning while they were still sleeping I made scones to greet them.

What do you eat for breakfast when you are "on baby watch"?

Delicate and soft to the touch--just like a newborn.

♥ ♥ ♥


Rockabye Breakfast Scones


  • 1 1/3 cups flour
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup butter, diced and chilled
  • 1/3 cup currants
  • 1/2 cup chilled whipping cream
  • 1 large egg


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Using a pastry cutter, work butter into flour mixture until it resembles course meal. Mix in currants. Whisk cream with egg in a small bowl and incorporate with flour mixture. Transfer dough to a floured surface. Press into a 1-inch thick round. Cut into triangles. Place on a prepared baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
  3. Makes about 8 scones
  4. © Copyright 2014 Peggy Barrett Lunde
  5. All Rights Reserved

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Beck on the Deck 2014

Posted by on Aug 20, 2014 in New | 3 comments

Beck on the Deck, an evening of red checks, plentiful food, music, chatter, and belly laughs highlighted Bill and Andi’s, Carson Valley yearly rendezvous;















fragrant jade pastures and purple mountains frame glorious ranchland.

MP and I traded out our Tri-tip bar-b-que menu from previous years, and cranked up the challenge to include several smaller parties before the big bash on Saturday evening with Mike Beck.

Laced between







sandy hikes, reunions with old friends
























(~ a very special thank you to Jeff Lilliard for some of these amazing portraits)





























and new ones,







we set out







picnic platters, pizzas,




















baked pasta,













cookies and crisps, charcuterie and copious crudités.








MP's Wild Boar Pate...

Whew, that’s a lot of stairs.








Behind the story is a year of punctuated jibber-jabber between MP and me (we have a rather brash communication style) practicing meals which could morph into a hundred plates in another state.








MP would always say, “Let’s do this for the party this year.”

My frequent reply, “Are you joking?”

This is a close up of the dinner last week for 100 people, which morphed from Costa Mesa to Carson Valley—because we are willing take the scary stair challenge; blessed to be a blessing serving under the enchanting Gardnerville glow…








Classic Cesar Salad








Corn Rice and Bean Salad with Chile Lime Vinaigrette











Pinwheel Pork Loin with Pepper Jack, Aged Salami ~ Scallion Cilantro Stuffing








Roasted Pepper and Tomatillo Sauce








Sweet and Savory Pan Gravy








Thank you Mike for your gifts! You are the reason we get together for an extraordinary summer night.











‘until August...  Namaste





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