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Saturday, March 20, 2010

Flatfootin', Green Boas, Beer, & Bling, and Chicken w/Pinot Noir & Cherries...

This is my absolute favorite photo from St. Paddy's night in Bluefield WV:  Chef Dan, The Other Dan, and Terry (a.k.a. BluefieldView), flatfootin' outside Gary Bowling's House of Art, to the banjo, guitar, & uke of the great George Robertson Band playing "Fox on the Run"...
We had a really fun evening, both at GBHoA and then at the Ramsey School Club, where we 'did the green thing': green beer, Dan's green sweater, my green feather boa (made possible by 50 Chinese chickens...), a little dancing on the bar (!), and Waaaaaaaay too much Jameson's Irish whisky!
For decades I have proclaimed (boastfully) what I learned from my mother: that Irish doesn't give one the hangover that Scotch does. And for decades it was true- at least for me. But it isn't any more. (!)
I spent Thursday "recovering" from the classic St. Paddy's Hangover From Hell, but now I feel fine. :-)

Prior to "indulging", Dan & I had ourselves Made Gorgeous at Hair Studio, the Aveda Salon & Day Spa in Princeton. Hair Studio is rather a Big Deal for me, as it was the first (and remains the only) salon I've been to in West Virignia that has stylists and colorists who KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING. This is truly no small thing. I will never, Ever forget sobbing and screaming in a parking lot after having Positively The Worst Haircut In The Known Universe at a mall in Beckley, and another almost-as-bad experience in another mall, where the stylist sneered at me and rolled her eyes when I tried to describe what I wanted- silky-smooth, glass-like blowdried hair- as opposed to the sticky, hardened mess of  "product" she had gummed me up with... And so Hair Studio remains Truly one of the great Good Things in my life. It's also the ONLY salon & day spa in our area that we send Elkhorn Inn guests to, because we KNOW they will be happy! My "Big 5-1" is coming up in about 10 days, and so it was time for me to get my hair properly cut and colored, and they did a grand job (as usual), totally disappearing the gray and giving me dramatic, shiny blond and red highlights & lowlights & a youthful, swingy cut. Dan didn't even fight me when I made an appt. for him to have his hair cut there, too! :-) I then did a Full Makeup, including, yes, Eyeliner, and we headed for the Mercer Mall, where Dan decided I simply Had to have the $9 Electric Kelly Green feather boa pictured above! Suitably decked out for St. Pats, we then headed out for our Night on The Town!

The only thing missing from my St. Pat's outfit, was, of course, a Big Green Rock, and when we got home I went to  DiamondNexus and found some fairly fabulous "emeralds"...  I love their Stephanie earrings with the emerald drops, especially in 14k yellow gold, and I can Definitely see myself wearing them- and not just on St. Patrick's Day!- BUT they're only for pierced ears (like most fine earrings, nowadays) and I don't have pierced ears! So... I kept looking amongst the emeralds and found they have my Favorite ring- the  "Nobility"  "Wisdom of the Heart" ring- the one that's hinged and opens up so you can engrave it inside- with a .30 round, brilliant cut emerald! I truly think their "Wisdom of the Heart" rings are The neatest things, and I'm pretty set on getting one to replace my engagement ring that got lost when I was doing laundry... I've showed it to Dan, and so far he isn't fighting me on it... :-)
Tonight Chef Dan did a "dress rehearsal" for our May 28-30 "Dueling Dining Car Chefs" Weekend, and I got to play "resident foodie"! Dan prepared "Chicken with Pinot Noir & Cherry Sauce" from James Porterfield's excellent cookbook "From the Dining Car"- and it was WONDERFUL! This will definitely be Chef Dan's entree for his menu for our gourmet railfan throwdown! James Porterfield is preparing his menu, as well, and as soon as both menus are finalized we will add them to the "Events" listing on the Elkhorn Inn's Facebook "fan" page 
The recipe calls for dried cherries, and since that's not something one can find in the grocery stores of southern West Virginia, we ordered Montmorency cherries from The Cherry Stop in Michigan (I Facebook & Tweet with them, too: @cherrystop).
The other thing I did this week was continue to research wines for our
May 14-16 "WV Wine Tasting Weekend", and from over 20 wineries throughout the state, we've already short-listed several really great ones!
And our Wine Weekend is now FEATURED on LocalWineEvents! Please check it out & give us a call
at 1-800-708-2040!

On a personl note, the Undisputed Sweepstakes Queen of Landgraff, WV won herself an amazing office chair from  As my loyal readers know, last week I got the fabulous Santana "shooties" I won from Princess Dominique's fashion blog, and hot on the heels of that win I got an email telling me I'd won the Posture Perfect Evolution Excercise Ball Chair which is a 55 cm diameter Anti-Burst Ball, that comes with a pump, locking casters, height-adjustable pegs, & a sturdy polyurethane base- AND the ball is removable "for use in a variety of exercises"! When I entered the contest this is the chair I told them I'd really like to try, because a) it looks SO cool, but b), and most importantly, it was created for dental techs who spend umpteen hours sitting hunched over the way I do at my computer, and I figured that if it helps Their back pain, maybe it will help mine! The Sitbetter folks have assured me that my bouncing baby ball chair is on its way, and I can't wait to get it! And after we pump it up, I obviously HAVE to get Dan to photograph me sitting on it in my "Shooties"! 

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