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I have a job where I walk through Richmond neighborhoods during the day and show off almost anything to unsuspecting folks. Friday I’ll be wandering The Fan in search of good food–not exactly a difficult task. Saturday I head to North Side to show off the eats available on MacArthur and Bellevue avenues. Don’t tell the restaurants, but as happy as I will be to introduce people to their joints, and as fun as it is that we’re starting the tour at my painter friend’s Sarah Master’s studio, I get absolutely giddy thinking about showing off backyard chickens in one generous person’s yard (almost legal, even) and then there’s the creme de la creme, alpacas in another woman’s backyard! In the city. I love this more than makes sense.

 

No eating alpacas on this food tour!

No eating alpacas on this food tour!

Tickets ($44.46) are available and must be purchased in advance here. I wonder how many restaurants on the tour are serving chicken? I do know we will answer the question, Which came first the chicken or the egg?

The egg doesn't come first on this tour.

The egg doesn’t come first on this tour.

Our visit to Little House Green Grocery will settle that!

 

 

I can’t tell you all the quirky offerings that will be on this Friday, March 15th’s tour, RVA Ink: Imprint & Impact, that we’ll debut in Richmond’s Downtown Arts District 12:30-3:30 p.m., but I’m perfectly fine with dropping a few tidbits to entice you.

It’s all about cool, artsy things going on downtown and includes lunch at Pasture. We start at Ghostprint Gallery and meet the co-owner and tattoo artist extraordinaire, Thea Duskin. Tattoos welcomed, but not necessary! Then we head to Art 180 which does amazing things with kids and art, then pop into Big Secret, a biz that does wild laser cutting and engraving, then lunch, then head  to Richmond Times-Dispatch, Library of Virginia for a special look at old newspapers and end at the Valentine to see their RVA tattoo exhibit before it closes at the end of the month. Ink in many forms. Creativity everywhere we turn. And I haven’t even mentioned the murals!
Pasture is creativity we can eat!

Pasture is creativity we can eat!

It’s quirky and creative, so it would be so fun if you could come! I’ll be leading it. Here’s the link for  RVA Ink. Should be good weather Friday, unlike today!

 

So here we are on a Sunday evening with no new Downton Abbey episode to look forward to. Life is harder than it looks–especially without all those servants and such. I suggest you don’t look at all. When one does, it’s not pretty.

It has come to my attention, especially when I am on the treadmill watching the morning news shows, that I have the answer to our unemployment troubles. Bring back the valets! There are just too many men on television who are in need of a good brushing off before they start spouting off.  I’m talking to you, Mike Barnicle! Tom Brokaw, too, I’m afraid. High Definition Television is doing no favors to those on TV and to those of us out in the hinterlands. I can see your dandruff. Your nose hairs, ear hairs, gunk in your eyes and spots on your sweaters. I don’t mean to pick on particular folk, and god knows I’d not do well under anyone’s scrutiny, but I avoid looking in the mirror early in the morning for good reason. I certainly don’t want to be subjected to visions on the television screen that are even more disconcerting. Thomas or Mr. Bates or even Mr. Molesley are what’s wanted ’round here! I get the point of their incessant shoulder brushing of Lord Grantham and Matthew Crawley’s suits and sport coats.

A valet in every house....

A valet in every house….

Think of the jobs there’d be. Especially if even the window guy at a big box home improvement store who has the unfortunate situation of an untamed mustache growing into his nose hairs–and vice versa–could get a valet. Be warned, once you start looking for unkempt men, the men in your own life might not look so bad.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all and to all some dark chocolate! I am not a traditionalist, so there will be no red roses today.

An orchid for Emily

Orchids are lovely. Sadly the pot is empty now. My bad.

 

 

IMG_2168

I made it myself only in the sense that my sister Mary Eileen wove the basket and my daughter made the heart magnet. I did purchase the Pantone postcards and put them in here though!

A chocolate for my thoughts?

A chocolate or 16 from Gearharts? Sadly these are not in my possession.

Heart be still.

Heart be still. It’s a beef heart from my heart throb. 

BaconHeart

BaconHeart

Whoopie!

Make some Whoopie!

impressive, no?

impressive, no?

that's all she wrote

that’s all she wrote

I wish I could show you what I’d like to show you on this auspicious occasion, but I can’t. Can’t even tell you why I can’t. It’s that crucial to the future of pie in Richmond. I will say that unless it’s a graham cracker crumb crust or the like, I don’t see the point of crust on and under pie. Not my thing.

Since it apparently is National Pie Day, I thought I’d be true to form for lunch and have my favorite thing–leftover homemade pizza. It also helped that we made a trio of pizza pies last night for dinner. BBQ Chicken w/ Caramelized Onions, Pesto w/ Chicken Sausage and a really good white pizza of my husband’s design with lots of stuff leftover from the other pizzas and mozzarella and such. Small pieces of the three, I swear.

Pizza Tonight Gluten free dough, FYI.

Pizza Tonight Gluten free dough, FYI.

 

In an unplanned pie day event, I ended up making a quiche. I use the ole Moosewood Cookbook recipe as my base and riff from there. It has never failed me though this one–in the oven now–certainly could. I used Swiss Cheese, sauteed onions and red pepper, added some leftover sage sausage that we had and, I’m embarrassed to say, pulled out some leftover greens from a container in the fridge and threw them on, too. I seem to recall their being a part of a meal in the not-too-distant past. Not sure what their mooshy-ness is going to add to the mess. Not to mention the mish-mash of flavors. Eggs and cheese cover a variety of mistakes.

Just Ducky

Would that I had my ducks in a row on this first day of 2013. Came upon something I wrote in early Jan. 2002 bemoaning the lack of organization in these parts and our manic undertakings to improve this that and the other. Ducks have two advantages that we don’t–no email or paper to drown in. I think it might take some walking on water to stay afloat!

 

So here’s the second installment of my Real Richmond gift guide from my Twitter feed. It’s a damned good list, if I do say so myself. I think it’s a good thing my children don’t follow me on any social media platforms.

Holiday Gift Guide #8 Gift certificate to a lovely #RVA B & B! Museum District B & B is near @VMFA. Maury Place &@gracemanorinn have pools!

Holiday Gift Guide #9 A membership in @falllinefarms for local-loving folks on your list. Year-round access to excess! http://ow.ly/fKTHB

Holiday Gift Guide #10 James River Park license plates for park-lovers on your list! #noDMVlinehttp://ow.ly/i/1bEls  http://ow.ly/fIa1y

Holiday Gift Guide #11 Burger bunch! Get gift certificates to@BelmontButchery @station2rva & @burgerbach for meat-lovers!

Holiday Gift Guide #12 Introduce someone to @relayfoods and give them the gift of local food & more time to themselves! http://ow.ly/fN2Tq

Holiday Gift Guide #13 French wine from @jemersonwine @Ellwoods@barrelthief + pass to French Film Festival @thebyrdrva http://ow.ly/fOAa8

Holiday Gift Guide #14 Nick’s on Broad sells the olive oil@StellasRichmond uses! Get chorizo and feta and other delicacies!

Holiday Gift Guide #15 Jewelry from Lynalise or Julia Dent at@bizarremarket at Chop Suey Books 

Holiday Gift Guide #16 #RVA =international! Gift certificates from  La Grotta Europa Stellas, Bistro Bobette, La Parisienne, etc. 

Holiday Gift Guide #17 @station2rva Get a Growler w/ purchase of $30 gift certificate. You don’t HAVE to give it away!

Holiday Gift Guide #18 Membership to @LewisGinter +tix to Gardenfest of Lights will put a shine to the whole year! #RVAhttp://ow.ly/gaHri

Holiday Gift Guide #19: beautiful baubles, pottery and other local#RVA delights at 43rd St. Gallery in Forest Hill.pic.twitter.com/3IXwWYMq

This is called cheating and I do it with a clean conscience since it is also multi-platform blah blah blah.

Here’s week 1 of my Holiday Gift Guide from my Real Richmond Twitter feed

It makes it awfully easy to participate in the Retail Merchants Association Think. Shop. Buy Local promo Saturday Dec. 8th, don’t you think? If you fill out the form at a participating retailer, you could win a $500 gift card from one of the afore-not-mentioned retailers.

Have fun and keep your sanity and your dollars in our community!

A recap of our gift guide:

Day 1 Holiday Gift Guide #1: #RVA books from @FountainBkstore or Chop Suey: First House; Come August, Come Freedom; Oregon Hill; Built by Blacks +

Day 2  Anything from @GearhartsRVA for the chocolate lover in your life! Caramels are my fave! #RVA

Day 3  #RVA ornaments (white or mirrored) from@modartifactsrva will glam up any tree! http://ow.ly/i/1b6HT 

 

Day 4 Chihuly tix from @VMFA (and treat yourself to a @wpabakery treat from Best Cafe!) #RVA #holiday

Day 5  Eliza Askin’s 2013 calendar. It’s a classic with some of our favorite spots in #RVA Find it @FountainBkstore

Day 6  Cool recycled bike gear even if you don’t bike! In @VMFA gift shop. Perfect for @richmond2015 http://ow.ly/i/1b6W9 

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Day 7  Holiday Gift Guide #7 Tix to #RVA theater! @firehouserva@henleystreetrva @virginiarep @richmondshakes From Madeline to Max, Will to Willy!

It will keep coming every day until Dec. 24th on Twitter.

and here is some of what I thought of it from an online piece for Richmond Magazine: Lincoln Premieres in RVA I’ll tell you more if you come on our Lincoln Legs: Brunch & Brushes with History tour tomorrow, Nov. 11th at 12:30 and we’ll brunch at LuLu’s in between following in Lincoln’s footsteps. I’ll also bring Dixie Donuts. I think Abe would approve. It is my dream to refight the Civil War using donuts, Dixie Donuts vs. Philly’s Federal Donuts. It is the only time I’d want the south to prevail. We’ll run Lincoln Legs again Nov. 25th, brunching at Arcadia then.

Lincoln is loved in VA

Rock, Paper, Scissors has never been my favorite game. I think right about now, with Sandy en route, I’d prefer the choice of Stone, Plywood, Drill Driver.

I wish….

I’m back!

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