Posts Tagged ‘Serenbe

14
Nov
13

11.14.13 … bourbon pecan pie …

 

 

The Hil, Serenbe, Bourbon Pecan Pie, Garden and Gun:  last week I went to the Hil and my meal was delightful.  Of course, less than a week later I spot this.  Why did I not  have dessert? 

Garden & Gun Magazine

Holiday recipes: From bourbon pecan pie to cornbread oyster dressing to the perfect Blood Mary, we’ve pulled together our favorite recipes to amp up your holiday spread. http://bit.ly/1aAAyTg

It’s hard to beat a fresh pecan pie, unless you add a little bourbon

The only tree nut indigenous to the South, the pecan has been used in the region’s cooking since the earliest colonists met Native Americans. But the rise of pecan pie—sometimes called Karo pie—came centuries later, commonly traced to a product-based recipe printed on jars of Karo corn syrup, circa 1930.

“That doesn’t surprise me,” says Hilary White, chef and co-owner of the Hil in Serenbe, a 1,000-acre sustainable community located in Georgia’s Chattahoochee Hill Country. “There was a day when family favorites were a mix of recipes clipped from the Sunday newspaper and Ladies Auxiliary books. Others came straight off the flour sack.”

While pecans grow throughout the South, Georgia has been the nation’s largest producer since the late 1800s. The state’s growers even donated enough pecan trees to create wood handles for more than ten thousand torches carried during the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. With peak harvesting months October to December, it makes sense that pecan pie became a traditional Southern holiday dessert, and the rich, nutty flavor matches the aromatic spices used in savory Thanksgiving recipes. “Every year my father’s parents would drive from Florida to Ohio, where my family lived at the time, stopping in Georgia to buy pecans,” White says. “I remember it was dark outside and we’d sit in the eat-in kitchen, picking them. My grandfather would use the nutcracker, and my grandmother and I would use the nut picks. It was delicate work because you didn’t want to crush the pecans but keep them perfect halves for the pie.”

White’s maternal grandmother contributed the piecrust, and like most inherited family recipes, it has a few “miracle” ingredients. The flaky tenderness comes from fresh white lard, testament to the recipe’s age. And the acidity in the vinegar enhances the workability of the dough, keeping it so pliable you don’t even have to rest it.

“Pie making is sort of a lost art,” White says, “and this is a good old recipe.” Though she did add one other miracle ingredient to her grandparents’ version: bourbon. “It has the same flavor nuances of the dark corn syrup and makes the pie even more Southern.”

via Bourbon Pecan Pie | Garden and Gun.

ice cream premium brands, Talenti, High-concept flavors and ingredient combinations, Sea Salt Caramel, Blood Orange and Sicilian Pistachio, BOGO:  I love Talenti, but it is so expensive I only buy it when it is BOGO.  

Talenti’s clear plastic pint package with a screw-on lid is more upscale than the traditional cardboard pint. And with flavors like Sea Salt Caramel, Blood Orange and Sicilian Pistachio, gelato commands a price roughly 25% to 50% higher than premium ice creams.

After all, the mark of a top-selling gelato, says Talenti founder Josh Hochschuler, is “something you want to eat a ton of.”

F. Martin Ramin/The Wall Street Journal, Styling by Jill Telesnicki (6)

High-concept flavors and ingredient combinations that once were considered niches—like vodka-flavored Limoncello and Montebianco, based on the Italian dessert made with roasted chestnuts and whipped cream—are going mainstream, as sellers of premium-priced gelato, sorbetto and ice cream cater to adult tastes and look to increase flat sales.

“We’ve seen an increasing level of interest in some of our more complex ice-cream flavors like rum raisin, bourbon praline pecan and peppermint bark,” says Cady Behles, brand manager of Häagen-Dazs, a Nestlé SA unit. Last month, Ben & Jerry’s, a unit of Unilever PLC, added “Ron Burgundy’s Scotchy Scotch Scotch” butterscotch ice cream, timed to the release next month of “Anchorman 2.”

via Premium Brands Hope Foodie Flavors Can Lift the $11.2 Billion Frozen Treat Industry – WSJ.com.

bikeshare programs, travel, adventure, Macs Adventure,  bikes, touring, Intelligent Travel:  I love touring by bike!

Macs Adventure

‘I don’t bike for biking’s sake. I bike because biking’s the best way to see a place. It’s more fun than public transit, quicker than walking and cheaper than taxis or renting a car – not to mention better for the environment.’

We couldn’t agree more. Biking allows you to access sides of places you wouldn’t otherwise see.

via Facebook.

Ten or 15 years ago, whenever I arrived in a new place, I’d ask where I could find the subway, a central plaza, or a DIY T-shirt shop. Nowadays — whether I’m in Ontario’s wine country or hopping off the train for a day in Denver – my first question has become “where can I get a bike?”

I don’t bike for biking’s sake. I bike because biking’s the best way to see a place. It’s more fun than public transit, quicker than walking (or horse cart, as I learned in Bagan), and cheaper than taxis or renting a car – not to mention better for the environment. What’s more, biking allows you to access sides of cities you wouldn’t otherwise see.

I had lived in New York City a decade before I took a bike up the Hudson River Park Bikeway. I saw things I didn’t know existed, like out-of-view softball fields, riverside anglers, and a little red lighthouse tucked below George Washington Bridge. What’s more, I was reminded, after years lost in Midtown skyscraper canyons, that New York down deep is a river city.

via Are Bikes the New Tour Bus? – Intelligent Travel.

 American Girl Dolls, kith/kin, history, parenting: My daughter forwarded this to me.  she is a current college student majoring in history and believes that the AG Dolls fostered her  love of history.  Very sad. 

 

You grow up with your dolls and through your dolls (or action figures, or stuffed animals, or whatever is your drug of choice). You use them to navigate miniature worlds. Limiting the range of their canonical adventures to the present-day, first-world problems of these little girls who are Just Like You is a big mistake. Sure, maybe you picked your first American Girl doll because she resembled you – actually a lot has been written on this – but the whole point was to give you an entry point to history. Felicity or Samantha or Addy reminded you that, during the Civil War and the Revolutionary War and all the fascinating important times of history, there were Girls Almost But Not Quite Like You. You could see yourself in history! You could engage with the biggest moments of the past!

Dolls Just Like Us. Is this really what we want? The image is embarrassing — privileged, comfortable, with idiotic-sounding names and few problems that a bake sale wouldn’t solve. Life comes to them in manageable, small bites, pre-chewed. No big adventures. No high stakes. All the rough edges are sanded off and the Real Dangers excluded. It’s about as much fun as walking around in a life vest.

Yes, I know there are plenty worse toys out there. Still, it pangs. These dolls were once a stand-out.

Of course, that’s history. We’ve moved past that.

via Even more terrible things are happening to the American Girl doll brand than you thought.

Providence and Queens Harris Teeter, grand openings, shame on you:  I am sorry, HT but your beautiful store is way out of scale for the neighborhood.  You ought to be ashamed.  

Harris Teeter plans to open its new, expanded grocery store at Queens and Providence Roads on Nov. 20, two years after the company first announced plans to demolish and replace the old Harris Teeter Express at that location.

The two-story, 42,000-square-foot Harris Teeter will be one of the larger grocery stores in the area. Its design mirrors many of the houses and buildings in the neighborhood nearby. As one of the company’s architects put it in a statement, “The building reflects the sophistication of the neighborhood fused with the excitement of shopping in a dynamic environment featuring food.”

The building features a Starbucks, an outdoor patio and expanded prepared food and produce sections. Building permits show Harris Teeter spent more than $9.1 million on the new store.

via What’s In Store: Providence and Queens Harris Teeter to open Nov. 20.

Mexican Coke  taste test, The Billfold:  I saw Mexican Coke in my local HT recently.  I think I will get some and have the kids do a blind taste test over Thanksgiving.  🙂

It really might be the experience of drinking the soda from a glass, at least according to Mexican Coke lovers. A commenter from the story argues:

Most of the “better taste” factor with MexiCoke comes from it being in glass bottles instead of cans or plastic. Bring back glass!

I have to admit that I too have always thought that the cane sugar in Mexican Coke made it taste better than the high-fructose Coca-Cola Classic bottled in the plastic in the U.S. The sweetness of American Coke is cloying, I’ve thought, perhaps, incorrectly. A grocery store near me sells both versions. Perhaps I’ll have to do a side-by-side taste test to find out for sure.

via Does Mexican Coke Really Taste Different From Coke Produced in the U.S.? | The Billfold.

4. ”If you want to hide a secret, you must also keep it from yourself,” wrote George Orwell in the novel 1984. That is coincidentally the year that Coca-Cola made the switch to high fructose corn syrup, rolled out New Coke (conspiracy theorists insist it was a diversion), began their denial of the flavor disparity, and started hiding miniature video cameras in their bottle caps.

11. If you get a Mexican Coke in Mexico, where they call it ”non-American Coke”, you won’t see any nutritional information sticker — those get slapped on when the bottles make their way up here. Maybe they should think about it, though: they recently surpassed us as the most obese country in the West!

via Mexican Coke Facts – Pure Cane Sugar Coke – Thrillist Nation.

 10.21.13 … supposedly they sell the real thing, Mexican Coke (aka non-American Coke) at some WalMarts in Atlanta, a a premium … Life doesn’t get much better than low country shrimp and grits … Perfect! … | Dennard’s Clipping Service.

11.5.13 … “Remember, remember the fifth of November when gunpowder, treason and plot. I know of no reason, why the gunpowder treason should ever be forgot!” … | Dennard’s Clipping Service.

 

Banksy, followup: A few things to think about … 

On the side of the old brick building that houses a thriving optical business, there are now two geishas, one with an umbrella, strolling over a “bridge” formed by one of the basement window arches. At the bottom of the arch is a spreading tree. It is beautiful.  But whether we like it or not, my sisters, father, and I have suddenly found ourselves in the position of being responsible for this notable piece of public art.

Should we preserve it immediately? Do we have a public duty to do so? How does one preserve a piece of art like this? How do we control the crowds with gawkers and fans of the elusive artist, many of them foreign tourists, who were suddenly standing outside the building? Will it make us money?

The advice came fast and furious. “Don’t tell people who you are,” a neighbor told me on the street. “They’ll try and kill you.”  “Put up plexiglass,” another told me.

via I’m the Accidental Owner of a Banksy — Daily Intelligencer.

 

Banksy did at least one admirable thing during his monthlong New York City residency: He bought a $50 landscape painting from a Housing Works thrift store, added a Nazi, and returned it to the organization as the now very valuable The Banality of the Banality of Evil. On Halloween, Housing Works, which uses donations to fight homelessness and AIDS, auctioned off the piece for a reported $615,000. Like Banksy, the buyer’s identity was a something of a mystery — he went by the screen name “gorpetri” on the auction website he used to make the winning bid. And, (arguably) like Banksy, he did not live up to the hype. Today, the New York Times and Talking Points Memo report that gorpetri “immediately shirked” on his pledge, leaving Housing Works to scramble to find another buyer.

The charity contacted the auction’s other high bidders and found another anonymous person to take it off their hands for an undisclosed amount on Wednesday. As for the gorpetri? “We are still looking into why he defaulted, and we reserve the right to sort of see what we’re going to do with it,” Housing Works COO Matthew Bernardo told TPM on Friday night. But, he told the Times, “We were happy with the [second] sale. We were happy with the process which we closed with, and it’s at a very good home.”

via Original Buyer of Banksy’s Nazi Painting Bailed — Daily Intelligencer.

 

 

Guggenheim Museum, UBS MAP Global Art Initiative:  Interesting … 

 

 

The Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative fosters cross-cultural interaction between artists, curators, and audiences via educational programs, online activities, and collection building. It focuses on three regions—South and Southeast Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East and North Africa.

via Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative.

Las Vegas NV, Lemon Drop Martini, “I’ll have what she’s having”:  I met a friend for drinks in LV.  I did a “I’ll have what she’s having” and I think this is what we had.  It was very good.  🙂

Jenny McCarthy’s Lemon Drop Martini

Makes 1

Juice of 3 lemons, plus a lemon wheel for garnish

2 tbsp. sugar (use 1 tbsp. for a more tart cocktail)

2 shots (1.5 oz.) vodka

1 sugar-rimmed martini glass

Mix lemon juice, sugar and vodka in a martini shaker filled with ice. Shake well and pour into sugar-rimmed martini glass. Garnish with a lemon wheel.

via Donnie Wahlberg, Jenny McCarthy: ‘Watch What Happens Live’ Cocktails.

The drinks

Wonderfully handcrafted cocktails are served, all with seasonal fruit, house-made mixers and freshly squeezed juices. We enjoyed two delicious examples: my friend had a Sunset Sangria ($15) with Pierre Ferrand Dry Curacao, Absolut Tune, rhubarb and strawberry shrub. I went for a refreshing London Cooler ($15) with Oxley gin, fresh lemon, Mr. Q Cumber and fresh cucumber.

There’s a “Social Hour” from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. every day featuring draft beer and half-price martinis. There’s also a “Night Cap Hour” from 10:00 p.m. to midnight with half-price coffee cocktails. PRESS also features Lavazza espressos with some serious baristas behind the counter and organic, fresh-squeezed juices. The wine list is deep and they are currently featuring wines from women winemakers.

via PRESS at Four Seasons Las Vegas – a Delicious Oasis – Yahoo Voices – voices.yahoo.com.

 

 

The Women of the Supreme Court,  the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery, Washington D.C. ,  female justices, Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan, Sandra Day O’Connor

The women of the Supreme Court are the subjects of a new painting unveiled at the Smithsonian\’s National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. on Monday.

The portrait features the high court’s current female justices, Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan, as well as Sandra Day O’Connor, who retired from the bench in 2005. O\’Connor made history in 1981 when she became the first woman ever named to the Supreme Court.

via The Women Of The Supreme Court Now Have The Badass Portrait They Deserve.

 

 

 

Frank Lloyd Wright’s ‘Usonian Home’,  74 Years Ahead Of Its Time, architecture

The work of Frank Lloyd Wright needs no identification. Unless, it\’s one of the hundreds of structures the legendary architect designed that never saw the light of day.

If you aren’t familiar with Wright’s work, you could head to the famous Guggenheim museum in NYC, or check out photos of the legendary Imperial Hotel in Tokyo. Or, you could take a stroll through the campus of Florida Southern College, which boasts 18 Wright structures, the most Wright-designed projects in a single site. That’s where the latest Wright design has come to pass — a single-story house that Wright designed 74 years ago.

Designed in 1939 as part of his middle class-friendly Usonian House series, the house features a flat roof, small kitchen, overlarge living area, and airy, plain-jane, aesthetic, as Curbed describes it.

According to design site Dezeen, the house is one of 60 created for in the Usonian style, “a kind of family residence that is free from ornamentation, intended to represent a national style whilst remaining affordable for the average family.”

Inside the house, which makes up part of the Sharp Family Tourism and Education Center, furnishings also keep Wright’s vision alive with its reproduction furniture designed by Wright specifically for use in his Usonian homes.

via Frank Lloyd Wright’s ‘Usonian Home’ Was 74 Years Ahead Of Its Time (PHOTOS).

Daylight Saving Time, helpful info, fyi, TIME Explains | TIME.com:   Very helpful info … watch the video, too!

Daylight Saving Time is one of the universe’s great mysteries, like the afterlife, or who really killed JFK. It was one of the things you assumed you’d never understand. But it’s time for TIME to break down Daylight Saving Time.

First of all, it’s this weekend (Saturday night going into Sunday, to be exact). And since we spring forward and fall back, we’ll all be setting our clocks back Sunday fall morning to get an extra hour of sleep.

Daylight Saving Time dates back to the good ole’ days when we did everything based on when we had sunlight. It got more serious when Benjamin Franklin decided to be “that guy,” suggesting we all get up earlier to save money on candles. Thanks, Benji. It was a major blow to all the unhappy, unhealthy, and unwise people who love to snooze.

The practice wasn’t formally implemented until World War I, when countries at war started setting their clocks back to save on coal. Daylight Saving was repealed during peacetime, and then revived again during World War II. More than 70 countries currently practice Daylight Saving Time, because they think it saves money on electricity (in the U.S., Arizona and Hawaii have opted out).

But studies show that Daylight Saving Time actually results in a one percent overall increase in residential electricity. And that it messes with sleeping patterns. Oh, and also it may cause heart attacks, according to the American Journal of Cardiology. So it’s no surprise that more and more countries are reevaluating whether to hold on to this relic from the past.

But like all great mysteries, the answers only beget more questions: Does your iPhone automatically update for Daylight Saving Time?

Actually, yes, it does.

via Daylight Saving Time: TIME Explains | TIME.com.

I-85 HOT lane toll, record, http://www.ajc.com, Peach Pass

The cost to drive the 16-mile stretch of “HOT” express lane on I-85 southbound in Gwinnett and DeKalb County soared to a record $8.50 Tuesday morning, eclipsing the old mark by 50 cents.

The High Occupancy Toll lane’s cost is set on a sliding scale depending on the level of congestion on I-85 and in the HOT lane.

According to the State Road and Tollway Authority website, “when HOT lanes become too congested, the price increases and this in turn reduces the number of cars entering the lane.”

The website says the authority’s goal is to keep traffic in the HOT lane moving at an average speed of greater than 45 mph during peak hours.

The maximum toll has been gradually climbing since the lanes opened on I-85 northbound and southbound 25 months ago.

Mark Arum in the AM750 and 95.5FM News/Talk WSB Traffic Center said the cost to drive the entire 16 miles hit $7 for the first time on June 26, and first hit $8 on Sept. 10.

via I-85 HOT lane toll hits record $8.50 | www.ajc.com.

Student Health Advisers, student stress, The Davidsonian, Davidson College, kith/kin: Nice article, PB!

Stress is such a given part of our lives that it doesn’t even seem like a problem. Too happy to be prisoners to our planners (or our procrastination), we constantly find ourselves working into the wee hours of the morning, anxious, worried, strung out on Union coffee, the glare of a computer screen burning our eyes. To make things worse, often we survive the week only to spend the weekend doing more work or lying about in a hung-over daze, perpetuating the cycle of sleep deprivation.

And yet Davidson is by no means a mill of torture and toil; a walk through Davidson also reveals students practicing on sports fields, reading out in the sun, laughing over meals and engaging each other in meaningful conversation. Still, it is important to remember the importance of breaking the repetitiousness of our weekly routines.

So what can we do? People suggest yoga, encourage us to get more sleep or manage our time more effectively, but in the end the result is often the same: less sleep than we would like, more work than we would like, erratic sleep cycles, embattled immune systems, quick tempers and naps that replace classes––none of which are good for our health.

Breaking the routine, even if it is writing a page in a journal, playing a game of FIFA, going for a run on the (fabulous) cross country trails, building a nap into your routine, getting off campus for an afternoon or a weekend, doing that one thing you love that you’ve convinced yourself you don’t have time for, is crucial to staying sane and keeping stress at bay.

For those who drink, it is easy to forget that drinking is not the only way to relieve stress; in fact, drinking excessively often creates more stress and leads to less sleep. It’s also time to think seriously about expanding the health center into a space dedicated to student wellness, with more space for programming (blenders? a zen garden? acupuncture?) or simply space to wind down and relax. A more regular bus to Charlotte would also be a helpful step, allowing students to change their environment more readily and easily.

Telling students to get more sleep is like telling a gambler to step away from the baccarat table: we would if it were that easy. We should all remember that Davidson is a community with plenty of helpful resources: walking into Georgia Ringle’s office and contacting a health advisor are great ways to discover different resources and opportunities.

There is no need to sacrifice our standard of academic excellence on the altar of complaint; but neither is there reason to sacrifice our well-being.

via Health advisers focus on strategies to reduce student stress – The Davidsonian – Davidson College.

11
Nov
13

11.11.13 … “Lord, teach me to be grateful, for others, and to You. Uncover all I have not noticed, and nurture in me a thankful heart.” …

Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Thansgivukkah, holiday mashup: “Home cooks have been doing that for centuries, and this year’s supercollider is an invitation to make something new that lasts.”

But on Nov. 28, there will be three candles ready in the menorah by the time the turkey leaves the wood fire. (Hanukkah starts on Wednesday at sundown, so depending on how long this meal lasts, we’ll probably be lighting candles for the second night around the time the pie comes out.)

The challenge this year is to serve a meal that honors our traditions, makes room for fresh influences from our grown sons (both home cooks) and blends the best of both holiday menus into one epic feast. For help, we turned to the Dining section’s own Melissa Clark, who picked out the most promising notes in our family cookbooks and developed recipe combinations that pulled the meal together.

She suggested we add fresh horseradish to the matzo balls, a perfect nod to David’s grandfather, who liked to carve bits tableside from a huge, gnarly root. So festive. It was also Melissa’s idea to serve our Hanukkah brisket next to the turkey, as if she knew that David’s grandmother always served two kinds of meat at every holiday, a subconscious demonstration of abundance by a Holocaust survivor who understood privation.

We won’t be the only family crowding into the kitchen this year, mixing holiday flavors and inventing new customs on our feet. Home cooks have been doing that for centuries, and this year’s supercollider is an invitation to make something new that lasts. But not cranberry sauce with raisins.

via When Thanksgiving and Hanukkah Collide – NYTimes.com.

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, Audible, bookshelf: So I listened to The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry on Audible and I really enjoyed it.  But I quickly realized that I needed a map.

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

NANJING China, The Sifang Project, architecture, an architectural fantasy land in China:  This is really fascinating on many levels.

Wall Street Journal ‏@WSJ 39m

Take a multimedia trip to an architectural fantasy land in China: http://on.wsj.com/17dFayp

NANJING, China—China is famous for its warp speed of construction. The Sifang project near this ancient capital in southern China is a study in the opposite.

The construction of 24 uniquely designed buildings by various architects on 115 acres of land has been slow and extremely deliberate, even though 1 billion yuan (US$164 million) has been spent to date. So deliberate, in fact, that when this design fantasyland opens to visitors Saturday, only 11 of those 24 structures will be complete—a decade after the architects submitted their designs.

Scaffolding covers the recreation center, designed by late Italian architect Ettore Sottsass. Only foundations have been laid for a house by 2010 Pritzker Prize-winning Japanese duo Sanaa. Even some of the houses that are “finished” still appear to be missing details like electrical outlets.

Sifang Museum.

ENMESHED IN MID-AIR: THE NANJING SIFANG ART MUSEUM | 艺术界 LEAP.

China’s wealthy patrons like Mr. Lu’s family are underwriting a major cultural boom, spending billions of yuan on grand buildings to showcase impressive collections of art, antiques and other cultural rarities. Their largesse and ambitions echo American industrialists who sponsored the arts in the early years of the 20th century… — online.wsj.com

Recently in The Wall Street Journal, reporter Jason Chow interviewed real-estate developer Lu Jun and his son Lu Xun who finally opened the Sifang Art Museum for its first exhibition this past weekend in Nanjing, China after 10 years of construction.

Spearheaded by Lu Jun and curated by architects Liu Jiakun and Arato Isozaki, the $164 million project consists of 11 mixed-use buildings designed by an international mix of well-known architects including Wang Shu, SANAA, David Adjaye, Mathias Klotz, Steven Holl, and artist Ai Weiwei (the only non-architect). Three more buildings are expected to be completed within the next year.

During a rising cultural trend of private museums owned by China\’s wealthiest patrons, Lu Jun, his son, and some of the museum’s architects describe the doubts, challenges, and hopes in the construction and operation of the ambitious project.

via Sifang Art Museum – designed by 22 architects including Wang Shu, SANAA, Adjaye, Holl – opens its first exhibition | News | Archinect.

“Without money from the property development, how do you support the art? It’s unfair to judge us that way,” Mr. Lu said. “We’re not flipping art.”

U.K. art consultant Philip Dodd, who has organized private-museum forums in recent years to gather China’s budding patrons, says art museums have long been tied to the large egos and profits of businessmen, pointing to Andrew Mellon, the U.S. financier who died in 1937 and whose art collection was donated to establish the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

“I wouldn’t over-moralize this,” Mr. Dodd says. “Museums are often set up with sugar money.”

via Nanjing’s New Sifang Art Museum Illustrates China’s Cultural Boom – WSJ.com.

U.S. Postal Service,  Amazon packages , Sunday delivery,  latimes.com:  Interesting.  I’d like to see the numbers.

Giant online retailer Amazon.com Inc. is turning up the heat on rivals this holiday season and beyond under a new deal with the U.S. Postal Service for delivering packages on Sundays.

Starting this week, the postal service will bring Amazon packages on Sundays to shoppers’ doors in the Los Angeles and New York metropolitan areas at no extra charge. Next year, it plans to roll out year-round Sunday delivery to Dallas, New Orleans, Phoenix and other cities.

Getting packages on Sundays normally is expensive for customers. United Parcel Service Inc. doesn\’t deliver on Sundays, according to a spokeswoman. And FedEx Corp. said Sunday \”is not a regular delivery day,\” though limited options are available.

The deal could be a boon for the postal service, which has been struggling with mounting financial losses and has been pushing to limit general letter mail delivery to five days a week.

Spokeswoman Sue Brennan said that letter mail volume is declining “so extremely,” yet package volume is “increasing in double-digit percentages.”

The postal service’s Sunday package delivery business has been very small, but the arrangement with Amazon for two of the retailer’s larger markets, Los Angeles and New York, should boost work considerably.

To pull off Sunday delivery for Amazon, the postal service plans to use its flexible scheduling of employees, Brennan said. It doesn’t plan to add employees, she said.

Members of Amazon’s Prime program have free two-day shipping and, under the new deal, can order items Friday and receive them Sunday. Customers without Prime will pay the standard shipping costs associated with business day delivery.

via U.S. Postal Service to deliver Amazon packages on Sundays – latimes.com.

NASA, astronauts, Overview Effect:

Who would have thought traveling to outer space could be such a profound experience? OK, probably everybody, but these former astronauts really articulate it in a way that was just a little mind-blowing.

via Some Strange Things Are Happening To Astronauts Returning To Earth.

workforce, women in the workforce:

Why were women opting out, particularly the ones who looked like they should have the highest potential?”

via Mandy O’Neill: Why Do Highly Capable Women Not Always Realize Their Workforce Potential? | Stanford Graduate School of Business.

meditation, The Noble Eightfold Pat, bookshelf:  So I attended a intro session on meditation and this short book was recommended.

The Noble Eightfold Path: The Way to the End of Suffering by Bhikkhu Bodhi

via The Noble Eightfold Path: The Way to the End of Suffering.

labyrinths, Camus quote:

“Life’s work is nothing but the slow trek to rediscover, through the detours of art, those two or three great and simple images in whose presence one’s heart first opened.” ~ Albert Camus

On a recent trip to Serenbe, one of my favorite retreat spots in the Atlanta area, I walked the labyrinth. I remember feeling a paradoxical sense of peace and power, when I finally surrendered my need to ‘get’ some earth shattering insights.

Labyrinths are truly sacred places. The design itself is ancient, some say more than 4,000 years old. It combines the sacred geometry of the circle and the spiral into a meandering but purposeful path.

The ritual of walking the labyrinth silences the intellect and awakens your deep, intuitive nature. Walking a labyrinth is a metaphor for life’s journey, you will often discover parallels between your ‘walk’ and how you move about in the world.  As you navigate this sacred space, it awakens and activates your own sacred blueprint.

The labyrinth invokes your intuition, creativity, and imagination.  It is an invitation to adventure to the core of your Essence and come back to the world with an expanded experience of who you are.

via Walk the Labyrinth: Awaken Your Sacred Pattern, Activate Your Sacred Path – ADELA RUBIO.

Black Friday, Holiday shopping, Thanksgiving:  I would love to say I would do this, but even in the 70s I spent thanksgiving shopping. We would take all our holiday catalogs to Pineview and turn down the corners all afternoon. So, since I already shop on-line on Thanksgiving, I guess I can’t begrudge the brick and mortar stores for trying to get me back.  Well, I can, actually.

J.C. Penney now joining Macy’s and other stores that plan to open on Thanksgiving Day, prompting this pledge to circulate. No way do I want to shop that day – but maybe a lot of people will. What’s your position on this?

Add Macy’s to the list of retailers kicking off “Black Friday” and Thanksgiving Thursday.

Macy’s will open the doors at most of its 800 namesake department stores, at 8 p.m. on Nov. 28. The company said the shift was voluntary for workers and that the move was “consistent with what many rivals are doing.

Traditionally, retailers have waited until Black Friday, the day after the Thanksgiving, to start their end-of-the-year push for sales.

U.S. retailers have extended their hours on Black Friday, so named because it’s when most stroes go into the black, in recent years to get a jump on the holiday season sales.

via Macy’s latest retailer to open holiday shopping season on Thanksgiving – chicagotribune.com.

Georgia Bulldogs , 2012 College Football Team Valuations, Forbes, followup: Given my recent excerpt from an article on the highest paid officials in each state (11.4.13 … “When you raise a generation to believe that throwing a ball is more important than fulfilling their civic duty to make informed decisions, you allow charlatans to sell their lies to the public unchallenged.” … ), I thought this interesting.

5. Georgia Bulldogs

Current Value: $99 million

One-Year Change in Value: 10%

Football Revenue: $75 million

Football Profit: $52 million

Conference: SEC

Head Coach: Mark Richt

Georgia’s value to the SEC increased thanks to playing in the Outback Bowl, which brought $3.5 million in bowl revenue into the conference. The Bulldogs may see another bump in revenue next year thanks to hosting the Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate rivalry game against Georgia Tech and playing in the SEC Championship this season.

via Georgia Bulldogs – In Photos: 2012 College Football Team Valuations – Forbes.

08
Nov
13

11.8.13 … ahhhhh, be serene …

“Solvitur Ambulando” – It is solved by walking, 2013 Labyrinth Walks, Serenbe Community, Chattahoochee Hills GA, kith/kin, Driving Mamma Lindsey, The Hil, The Inn at Serenbe, Mary Mac’s Tearoom:

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I visited here for the first time in August. I knew I’d be returning.
This time I not only brought my mom, but I also brought my sister.
We first did the drive through the various “villages”…

It is a national model for the future of balanced development in the U.S.— focusing on land preservation, agriculture, energy efficiency, green building, walkability, high density building, arts and culture, and community living for multiple generations. With a projected 70% of future building occurring in the greenfield, Serenbe demonstrates how urban development models can succeed on the edge of a metropolis while preserving a vast majority of the greenspace. Serenbe’s ultimate goal is to demonstrate how development can accommodate the need for housing with minimal impact on nature—Serenbe’s land plan call for a preservation of at least 70% of the acreage, while accommodating as many or more people as traditional subdivision-style development, which would disturb nearly 80%.

Serenbe was the first hamlet built in Chattahoochee Hills, a 40,000 acre city with an overlay plan that calls for preservation of a minimum of 70% of the acreage. Serenbe’s founders, Steve & Marie Nygren and Rawson Haverty, have created an urban model promoting walkability and community living, with private residential homes (currently, approximately 170 residents), commercial space, art galleries, original shops, stables, and a 20-room inn with conference facilities. Serenbe has devoted 30 acres to farming—the Serenbe Farm is certified organic and biodynamic with a thriving CSA program and Saturday markets. The community is home to three thriving restaurants—Blue Eyed Daisy Bakeshop (the nation’s smallest Silver LEED certified building), The Farmhouse (which has received national critical acclaim in Gourmet and Bon Appetit magazines, and is consistently featured in local publications), and The Hil (owned by executive chef Hilary White, and has received national critical acclaim in Food and Wine magazine, and was named a Best New Restaurant by Atlanta Magazine and the Atlanta Journal Constitution).

via Serenbe Community.

 … and then proceeded to The Hil for lunch.  Lunch was perfect.  My sister and I shared our two items, mine a burger with pimento cheese and hers a crabcake fritter sandwich.  Both were excellent.  My mom enjoyed brocolli cheese soup and gourmet grilled cheese sandwich, also excellent.
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After lunch, we drove back toward the Inn and stopped by the labyrinth.  Although the setting is wonderful and it is a full 11-circuit Chartres, it is the Stonehenge of labyrinths.  it is way too large!! And because it is so large, the timing is all wrong.  The sacred geometry does not work, it is not sacred when the scale is wrong.  It is merely fun.
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Our last stop was to the Inn.   We walked in seeking info about the Inn’s Thanksgiving Day menu and availability.  The pastry chef was wonderfully attentive to every question.
As I walked out, I noticed that a cookbook from mary mac’s tearoom was for sale and the only cookbook for sale. Mary mac’s is a family favorite and my sister was actually eating dinner there that night.  I asked the connection.  I should have known that …

At Serenbe, we believe in the power of food.  Families bond over meals, friends are made, and true communities are formed. Serenbe founders Steve & Marie Nygren have a long history with food—Steve as a restaurateur and founder of the successful Peasant Restaurant Group; Marie as the daughter of Margaret Lupo, owner and chef of Atlanta’s famed Mary Mac’s Tea Room—and they knew that culinary arts should be at the heart of all that Serenbe has to offer. Thus, Serenbe has become a dining destination featuring authentic restaurants and some of the best talent in the South.

via Restaurants at Serenbe.

Blessings!
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09
Aug
13

8.9.13 … Driving to Serenbe … and a new labyrinth …

“Solvitur Ambulando” – It is solved by walking, 2013 Labyrinth Walks, Serenbe, kith/kin, Driving Mamma Lindsey:  So I have heard about Serenbe for several years now because of its great farm to table restaurant, The Farmhouse.  Although not open for lunch on weekdays my mom and I headed out on an adventure shortly before noon.

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I had no real expectations …

The three distinct hamlets are named Selborne, Grange and Mado.  Selborne is the center for arts (performing, visual and culinary), and is currently home to about 100 residents, the Blue Eyed Daisy Bakeshop, Studio, Swan Art Gallery, Goode’s For the Home, Gloriosa Style, and The Hil restaurant.  Here, you’ll find stunning attention to artistic detail, from the glowing streetlamps created by an artist especially for the Selborne hamlet to the iron bike racks, benches and even trash cans.  Grange, currently under construction, is the farm hamlet, given its proximity to the Serenbe Organic Farms and Serenbe Stables.  With hilly terrain and sweeping views of 50 miles of greenspace, the lake, and preserved forestland, homes here will feel as though they’re nestled in a mountain retreat.  Grange will also be home to a barbecue restaurant, a tack store, feed and seed shop, and arts and crafts studios.   The third community, which is in the planning stages, is Mado—named for the Creek-Indian word meaning “things in balance.”  Here, you’ll find the destination spa, an upscale boutique hotel, vegetarian restaurant, juice bar, traditional and holistic medical services, assisted living, and more.

via Serenbe Community.

I realized immediately that Serenbe reminded me of Tottingham Lane SA, the landscape and the cluster arrangement of the communities.
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We had lunch at the The Bue eyed Daisy Bakeshop  … very good cheese and broccoli soup and ham, local blue cheese and arugula sandwich.
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We continued to drive around the development which included an organic farm, artist colony, horse barn and Inn.
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And last but not least a …. labyrinth
It was a very large Chartres style labyrinth made of rocks with gravel, many of the rocks as large as 1′ x 8″ x 6″.
it was in a very sunny area so it was very hot in the sun.  The area was a  very natural wooded area overlooking a pond and a very funky gazebo.  This was the largest labyrinth I have ever walked.
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And a donkey BRAYING! That was a first for a labyrinth walk.
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Here is some additional info about Serenbe …

Serenbe is a 1,000 acre community located under 30 minutes from Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. It is a national model for the future of balanced development in the U.S.—focusing on land preservation, agriculture, energy efficiency, green building, walkability, high density building, arts and culture, and community living for multiple generations. With a projected 70% of future building occurring in the greenfield, Serenbe demonstrates how urban development models can succeed on the edge of a metropolis while preserving a vast majority of the greenspace. Serenbe’s ultimate goal is to demonstrate how development can accommodate the need for housing with minimal impact on nature—Serenbe’s land plan call for a preservation of at least 70% of the acreage, while accommodating as many or more people as traditional subdivision-style development, which would disturb nearly 80%.

Serenbe was the first hamlet built in Chattahoochee Hills, a 40,000 acre city with an overlay plan that calls for preservation of a minimum of 70% of the acreage. Serenbe’s founders, Steve & Marie Nygren and Rawson Haverty, have created an urban model promoting walkability and community living, with private residential homes (currently, approximately 170 residents), commercial space, art galleries, original shops, stables, and a 20-room inn with conference facilities. Serenbe has devoted 30 acres to farming—the Serenbe Farm is certified organic and biodynamic with a thriving CSA program and Saturday markets. The community is home to three thriving restaurants—Blue Eyed Daisy Bakeshop (the nation’s smallest Silver LEED certified building), The Farmhouse (which has received national critical acclaim in Gourmet and Bon Appetit magazines, and is consistently featured in local publications), and The Hil (owned by executive chef Hilary White, and has received national critical acclaim in Food and Wine magazine, and was named a Best New Restaurant by Atlanta Magazine and the Atlanta Journal Constitution).

via Serenbe Community.

and a connection to Mary Mac’s Tea Room and the Haverty family …

Founders What is Serenbe

Like-minded founders that thankfully found each other

Marie and Steve Nygren

Marie and Steve Nygren discovered the property now known as Serenbe on an outing to introduce their children to the Georgia countryside. They purchased the first 60 acres, along with the existing buildings, in 1991. Weekend visits for Marie, Steve and their young daughters literally transformed their lives and in 1994 they sold their Atlanta home and relocated full-time to Serenbe. In 1996, they turned the 1930s horse barn next to their house into guest rooms and opened the Serenbe Bed & Breakfast.

Marie grew up in the hospitality business. Her mother was the owner/operator of Mary Mac’s Tearoom, a well-known Southern restaurant in the heart of Atlanta. Marie attended Florida State School of Hospitality and Restaurant Administration before returning to Atlanta to manage the Women’s Commerce Club. Marie now oversees the kitchen and menu development at the Farmhouse and the Serenbe Chef Series Cooking classes.

Steve … opened the Pleasant Peasant restaurant, which grew to a corporation of 34 restaurants in eight states by the time of his departure in 1994.

Nan and Rawson Haverty, Jr.

Nan and Rawson bring to the Serenbe project a strong enthusiasm for this new vision of community, a longtime interest in the arts and their solid business experience.

Nan Haverty shares a wonderful family and a home both in Atlanta and at Serenbe with her husband Rawson and their two children.

Rawson has served on the Board of Directors of Haverty Furniture Company for over ten years. He joined the company in 1982 and was named Senior Vice President of Real Estate and Development in 1998.

via Serenbe Community.

And according to the proprietor at the gift ship Twig, “Serenbe” is nothing more than a play on “be serene.”
And on the road from the highway there was a large brick church with a tall white steeple at the end of a double tree-lined drive.   I had to find out what it was … The Georgia Baptist Children’s Home.
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Palmetto Campus.

For 141 years, Georgia Baptist Children’s Homes & Family Ministries, Inc. has been reaching out to hurting children and broken families. We couldn’t minister to these children and their families without your support. Thank you for helping us put the pieces together for all the children God sends our way.

via Georgia Baptist Children’s Homes and Family Ministries, Inc..

11
Jul
13

7.11.13 … Serenbe … “Sonoma for the New South” …

Serenbe, bucket list, Exploregeorgia.org: On my list … 

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Just off I-85, south of Atlanta and tucked into the serene shade of Chattahoochee Hill County is the incredibly beautiful land that makes up the Serenbe community. Buildings ooze farmhouse charm while maintaining a nationally recognized eco-friendly footprint that makes a trip to the community a must for any visitor to Georgia.

Only 30 minutes from Atlanta, visitors are greeted by fresh air, farm life and a village among the 1,000 acres, including renowned restaurants The Hil and The Farmhouse at Serenbe. Within minutes of your arrival at Serenbe, you’ll understand why the area has been dubbed the “Sonoma for the New South” by the New York Times.

Serenbe isn’t just a few farmhouses, a village and some great restaurants. It’s a community with schools, stores, festivals, a theater and a hotel.

via Just Off the Highway: Serenbe | Blog.Exploregeorgia.orgBlog.Exploregeorgia.org.

I’ve mentioned it before …




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