Many hours are spent in the Kitchen and, for this reason, we feel that it is really important to make that space not only very practical, but also comfortable, and cheerful. We are firm believers in the fact that things can be both practical and beautiful at the same time. One is not exclusive to the other – in fact, one doesn’t do well without the other, in our minds! Read more
We have some new additions to our family. Back in October Bianca, Colette, Edith, Fiona and Giselle joined us. You will probably hear about them from time to time, they are the feathered members of our family….our chickens. They arrived via the US Postal Service from My Pet Chicken when they were just about 24 hours old.
I believe that there comes a point in every life where there is, if only for a fleeting moment, a sense of completeness. For me it came as I stood by my grandmother’s hospital bed, holding her hand as she left this world and went on to the next.
The profoundness of birth and death give definition to our lives, which seem otherwise often to be just so many ordinary days strung together like a sentence and punctuated by a few very high and low moments.
Eat your vegetables! Most people have either heard or said those words because we all have parents or are parents ourselves. Our parents said them to us, and we in turn have passed on this dreaded edict to our offspring. The sad part is, it is almost always said in response to a child who has declined to even taste something from the vegetable category of the food pyramid.
I grew up a native of Los Angeles, a fourth generation Angelino on my father’s side. The roots of my soul however, grow deep in a place that I have never actually lived. My mother, and her side of my family tree, originated in the South, and thus those were the lessons I learned of food and family and fun times. Read more
As the night for the Academy Awards approaches, we promised to give you some ideas for your Oscar party. Today we want to share with you two of our favorite recipes, Deviled Eggs and Hot Artichoke Dip.
Deviled eggs are one of those foods that conjures up happy childhood memories of family gatherings. They’re a simple food that you eat with your fingers at picnics or barbeques or maybe on Easter. So, years ago, as we prepared for a cocktail party, it seemed a stretch to serve such an “ordinary” item on a buffet that wanted to be…….not stuffy……but maybe a little bit elegant. Still we needed one more item to round out the menu and fill a gap in the buffet table, and what we had in abundance were eggs, so why not try them, along with the other dishes being prepared and just see how they were received? Read more
Synonymous with Two Chums is love, joy, and abundant living. We have found that there is nothing stopping anyone, at any time, from feeling love, joy and enjoying an abundant life. We can feel love by loving and have joy by being joyous. An abundant life comes with having an abundant thought. Read more
“What do meatloaf and butterscotch pudding have to do with each other?” you may well be asking yourself. Unless you are me, the answer is most likely, “Nothing.”
The year was 1977 and I was married less than a year, pregnant, and horribly sick. I did not have morning sickness that lasted the usual first 3 months when one is expecting. I had all day and all night, constant, unrelenting nausea and vomiting, which I have since learned was due to something with a weird name that basically means I was highly allergic to being pregnant. Not to my precious daughter, Sara, but to whatever hormones my body was making to keep the pregnancy going. I was a mess.
Over the years, some very well known and glamorous people have leapt to their feet and taken the stage when hearing this familiar phrase. Though most of us will never be in their situation, we can all identify with the excitement of being acknowledged for a job well done. In the film industry, Oscar is the icon synonymous with excellence.
There are many stories floating around as to how Oscar got his name but one legend has it that Eleanor Lilleberg, a Norwegian-American, who was the Executive Secretary to Louis B. Mayer exclaimed when viewing the statuette, “It looks like King Oscar II!” Before leaving for the day, she asked, “What should we do with Oscar? Put him in the vault?” and the name stuck.
Oscar, today, is made of gold-plated britannium on a black metal base. During World War II, with a desire to support the War effort, the statuettes were made of plaster, and later, traded in for gold ones when the War ended. Oscar is 13½ inches tall and weighs 8½ pounds. He is actually a knight designed in the art deco style, holding a crusader’s sword, while standing on a reel of film with five spokes. Each of these spokes represents a branch of the Academy: Actors, Writers, Directors, Producers, and Technicians.
America is in love with this, her favorite award show. We love to see the clothes, we love to hear the interviews, and we love to speculate on who the winners will be, most certainly, “Best Actress”, “Best Actor” and “Best Picture”.
The two people pictured here don’t represent, for most of us, the classic picture of love and romance. They aren’t the “beautiful people” we have come to associate with tabloid and magazine covers depicting the latest celebrity romance or breakup. They are two ordinary people who taught me an extraordinary lesson about real love. They are my maternal grandparents, John and Willie Ridgway, or Papaw and Nanner to me.
Their 66 year marriage was not what I would call an epic romance. It was a great love story. In their 66 years together they weathered the Great Depression, the tragic and sudden death of a 20 year old daughter leaving behind a 4 month old daughter of her own for them to help raise, a cross country relocation, multiple muggings after moving to California, and the other sundry challenges and hardships you might imagine that any two people who lived together for 66 years would have to encounter. Read more
My dear chum,
“To write a good love letter, you ought to begin without knowing what you mean to say and to finish without knowing what you have written.”
Printed cards that one buys certainly have their place, and sometimes say exactly what you are feeling, but hand written notes from the heart are probably the most cherished gifts one could receive. There is no better way to tell someone how you feel about them – start writing and just let it flow. It will be felt, deep into the soul of the receiver. Read more
Why red roses for love? As the story has it, the red rose was the favorite flower of Venus, the Roman goddess of love and, since then, the red rose has been associated with lovers. The tradition lives on. From timeless pieces of art and classical poetry to modern day music and media, red roses are seen depicting the message of love.
For most people, red roses simply mean “I love you” and that is why, in the United States, one hundred and ten million roses, the majority being red, will be sold and delivered within the three-day time period around Valentine’s Day. Amazing!
Robin and I do most of our flower shopping at the Los Angeles Flower Market in downtown Los Angeles. Read more
It seems quite fitting to us that our first entry as we establish our home on the World Wide Web would be on the subject of hospitality. It is what we are all about. Hospitality is one of those things that you may not have a snappy definition for, yet you know it when you see it, (or feel it), and when you don’t.
On the surface entertaining and hospitality can seem very much the same, yet they are really totally different. Entertaining is focused on drawing attention to the host or hostess, and how wonderfully and beautifully she (or he) can do things. Hospitality is focused on one’s guests, and doing things beautifully in order that they will feel special.
How many times have you heard someone on television, who was cooking or decorating or making something for a party say, “Now this will really impress your guests!” Our culture is bombarded by messages that we need to do things well so others will think more highly of us.
We all hear and read tips on entertaining. The shelves in the bookstores are full of books on the subject and there are endless websites that are dedicated to helping you entertain. We are not one of them.
Two Chums is all about excellence and doing things well, and when we extend an invitation, we want our guests to see that things are beautifully done, and much time has been given to preparation, because they are special and worth our time and efforts. As you visit us each day we will be sharing with you things we’ve learned along the way in our homes with our families about love, joy and abundant living that is within everyone’s reach. We will share about the parties and celebrations we are having, about home decor projects and things we’ve learned about the art of gift giving. And of course some thoughts from our hearts.
Mother Theresa said, “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” Making others feel wanted and welcome, showing hospitality, is one of those small things we all can do with great love.
So though you may never actually visit the houses where we live, we want to invite you to visit our Two Chums home everyday. We will do our best to prepare for you because we care, and we want you to know we think you are worth our time and effort.
Welcome to Two Chums!
The word “trifle” comes from the old French term “trufle,” and means something of little consequence. Had they tasted this trifle they might not have thought so! A proper English trifle is made with egg custard, cake, usually stale or left over cake, with a fruit syrup and sherry and topped with whipped cream.
We will give the recipe for each of the important components but obviously if you happen to have some stale cake lying about feel free to use it. Also we used fresh raspberries and Fresh Raspberry Freezer Jam but store bought jam or strawberries and strawberry jam are equally delicious.