I came home from my trip to see that our tree had been rodded and cabled. There's 2 rods. See the other one up in the crook of the tree? The wound is healing nicely and hopefully these rods and the associated cables will keep this big thing up for many years to come!
The guys tell me that as the tree grows - which will take years - the tree bark will sort of 'knuckle' over those washers/bolts/end of the rods, so they might disappear somewhat?
We didn't stop at just the Mrs. Claus ornament at the Christmas sale. We also picked up these deer bookends. They were in the Christmas section (marked half off) and are stamped Japan on the bottom, so they fit in with our other Christmas stuff. Nat tells me that deer are 'hot' in home decor trends these days, so it appears that these might not be destined to our Christmas collection, rather for either the Babe or the Bird's room for everyday use.
Earlier this winter, I wrote about the old Lou Malnati's menu and mentioned that as I was waiting around for my pie to finish up, I spied an old Chicago Tribune article posted on the wall that included the original Lou Malnati's Italian Salad Dressing Recipe. The Tribune reporter called it "prized". We were set to host a little pizza party over the weekend, so I figured I'd give it a shot. Here's the article as seen through my mobile phone's camera. I'm not a wine drinker, so the fact that the recipe called for Burgundy wine didn't strike me as odd. I went shopping at Angelo Caputos in Addison - a really incredible shopping experience - and when I got to the wine section I found Burgundy wine was carried ONLY in those HUGE jugs. And they were dirt cheap. The only issue is that needed just 4 ounces. We ended up with a whole-lotta-wine that Nat won't drink. I've taken the recipe and modified it a bit by eliminating the percentage
Late last week, I posted about the idea of building a 'garden nook' or a secluded area that draws you in as something that is 'on trend' this year and maybe something to consider for our backyard. In that same post, I made a reference near the bottom of Japanese Moon Gates . I included the moon gate as a way to potentially create a 'nook' but after looking around the Web, I now realize they're so much more. From this Old House Online story , you can find out the details of the structure: A moon gate is a circular opening, usually in a garden wall, which acts as a passageway. In China, where the gates were built in the gardens of wealthy nobles, various parts of the form and its ornamentation carry meaning. More generally, though, a moon gate is thought to offer an auspicious welcome or fortune to those who pass through. English gardeners borrowed the idea from China in the late 19th century. American gardeners immediately followed suit. A moon gat