Convos With An Addict, A Food Addict

Shhhh.  Quiet. My fantasy is about to come true.

I’m lifting the triangular tip of my slice of pizza right up near my mouth, slowly. It’s always the anticipation that makes it so exciting. The savory smell of the tomato sauce and oregano, garlic,starts wafting in the air, that smell that draws you in, the one you’ve longed for. You breathe in the luxurious scent with one long breath, you moan with happiness and then, finally, you pick it up and feel the rough, grainy texture in your hands that you stroke with pleasure.

I lift up the heavily anticipated slice (or 2 or 3) of pizza, blow on it gently, I want warm pizza not too hot to burn me, a little spicy, adding extra garlic salt and I open my lips and taste that first amazing bite.

This is only the first slice of pizza of the two or more I will eat tonight, my husband and I have looked forward to this night for days. We only use one pizzeria in town even though there many other options. But, this one, is our favorite and we have tried every one of four or five places, sampling each, several times.

In the past we ordered a slice of Sicilian pizza and a regular slice for each of us of us but I’m not sure which direction we will go tonight. We’ve taken chances on the Sicilian slices before, sometimes it’s a bit too doughy and the ratio is wrong.

I know what you are thinking there is no such thing as too doughy yet when it comes to Sicilian pizza there needs to be a balance and sometimes from this place, the balance has been off. It depends on our mood, we are never disappointed with their regular slices, plain or mushroom, I have a feeling I know what we will do.

I lick my lips in anticipation. They also serve (sorry if this is a bummer for pizza enthusiasts) the most amazing salad, (stick with me here) with kinds of lettuce, craisins, goat cheese and slices of avocado .Believe me I am not a salad lover but this seems like it should be outlawed it is SO good. It comes with some sort of silky raspberry dressing and we are not counting calories here.

This was yesterday’s dinner, I would happily eat the same thing today. This is one of my favorite (and most comforting) meals. It speaks to me of my youth and happiness, and Dani’s House of Pizza and André the Pizza maker and of course, the owner, Dani. It was a tradition when we were old enough to walk from school and go there for lunch. For one dollar we got two slices, a drink (grape, no ice) and had leftover money for candy.
Just thinking about it makes me nostalgic and very, very hungry. Maybe I will have the same meal again, Saturday.and toast to the old times when we were young and life was easy and uncomplicated.

 

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Glorious Food: North (Armonk, NY)

Sunlight coming in through the window, I lie back in my warm bed and close my eyes. My WindowFeb14left hand is stroking my red dog’s fur, if she could purr she would. So would I. Half of an apple cinnamon muffin with a sugary crumb topping melted away with my strong cup of coffee. A wonderful start to the morning after an even better evening.

I do believe that my calling in life is to go out to restaurants and review them or watching television shows and rating them.  Last night we treated ourselves going out for dinner at a restaurant called North in Armonk, N.Y.

It is something we have not done in months. With no income our dinners have consisted of scrambled eggs, toast, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, home-made chicken soup and pizza. We never complain. Last night was an exception to perk us up.

It worked. We were delightfully grateful that every mouthful “danced on our tongues,” our greatest compliment. From appetizer(s) Flatbread “pizza” with mushrooms and cheese, and bacon, apple, fennel salad, every bite was amazing.

I do not eat fish, usually. It is rare for me to find a fish dish that is acceptable I am definitely picky. I ordered monkfish, in a lemon-butter sauce with tiny grape-size potatoes. I swooned. My husband had swordfish which was almost as good but I definitely won. Though I tasted his swordfish and I even liked it. (That’s never happened before.)

After we finished the meal I felt sad that we weren’t starting it. Sad. Our lovely friend and waitress, Maria, was there, a sweet smile on her face, animated, knowledgeable and sincere. Her helper, Rebecca, was as charming and helpful.

For those who know me I could not leave without dessert, my husband and I are genetically programmed to NEED dessert. Even though we were bursting out of our outfits we, of course, had to look at the menu and decided to share a huge chocolate chip cookie (served in a frying pan) with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Let me say this, I applaud this restaurant because when I ordered a Diet Coke (feeling a bit guilty) they told me that they do not serve anything with artificial ingredients but they asked me if I would like to try a natural soda sweetened with agave. Bravo! This speaks to me, it is the CVS (phasing out cigarettes) of restaurants.

The evening was divine, our date was heavenly and a real treat. After paying and saying goodbye we lovingly clutched the apple crumb muffins they give to each patron after we paid the bill.

If that’s not heaven, what is?

*PS For those who are unfamiliar with my blog this could be the start of another “Gazpacho Chronicles” from last summer.

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FWF Kellie Elmore: Junior High

English: View of Davey Elementary School in Ke...

English: View of Davey Elementary School in Kent, Ohio. The building opened in 1922 and was first home to Theodore Roosevelt High School until 1959 before serving as Davey Junior High/Middle School until 1999. It was renovated from 1999-2000 and reopened in 2000 as Davey Elementary School. Originally uploaded 3 February 2007 to English Wikipedia. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On my first day of Junior High School I was nervous, excited and scared.  I walked from my apartment building with a friend, up the steep hill, passing the red brick elementary school I had graduated from and the gray cemetery that lurked on the right side. It was at least a 25 minute walk to our bus stop which was in front of the big, smoky subway station.

I was overwhelmed by the sensory overload in the morning: noise and stimulation, many people bustling about, headed to trains or buses, to the coffee shop, The Pastrami King, the pharmacy, or the courthouse. Everybody walked so quickly, rushing to their destination.

Finally, our bus came and we piled on pushing and shoving trying unsuccessfully to save a seat for a friend. There were four seats in the last row where the “tough” kids sat smoking and blowing their smoke in our direction.

There were smells on that bus from an array of  both food and people: tuna fish sandwiches, the sugar sweetness of  French crullers, sweat, body odor and smelly feet, potato chips. There was always one “bad kid” in the neighborhood and of course he was there ready to make himself known as if we had forgotten him after six years of elementary school.

We passed the bank clock and it was always 8:32 am, every single day, in bright large numbers, in yellow-orange against a black background, that always cheered me up.  I marveled at the accuracy of the bus each morning. That was the highlight of my day. It was, after all,  Junior High School, you were almost required to be moody and miserable, it’s just the one thing they didn’t pass a handbook out for.

The real change was recess which was not held in the comfortable basement of our school like it was in elementary school but rather outside in a cold, cement area marked with high wired fences. It looked like a prison. There were no trees in the back, not a blade of grass or flowers.

It was the first time where we changed teachers for different subjects, moved with the same students, from class to class. It was fascinating and new, odd and strange. Junior High School is not a great experience for many people, probably due to our age. It’s an awkward time, the guys and girls wearing acne, boys’ voices were in the middle of changing, the girls were in a huge range of maturity and we were all uncomfortable and self-conscious, everybody hated how they looked.

Socially, it was a new world, new girl friends, a larger and diverse crowd than elementary school. I hung out with a new friend who introduced me to smoking menthol cigarettes while chewing gum and drinking Fresca soda on a huge rock that we scrambled up in the big, bright park after school. Her name was Susan and after my phase of trying to be bad, I gave it up shortly.  Judy, was my best friend with bright red hair and a twin and we sat next to each other in class, trying to desperately hide our laughter. We had a horrible teacher who made angry spots on the blackboard with his chalk and every time he did it we would burst out in hysterics. At the same time I stared at a classmate who picked at her hair for an entire hour and a half. I couldn’t stand to look yet I couldn’t look away.

It was a world unknown and new yet very stressful and depressing. It was on the very same bus, going home, that I heard one of my friends, since childhood, had committed suicide. She overdosed on drugs after her mother remarried a classmate’s father. I couldn’t stop thinking about that, I never forgot about it either.

Her absence, in Junior High School was far more memorable than any day I sat in class. I can still picture her face, her long black eyelashes, the intense blue of her unwavering stare. This is in memory for you, Lori B.

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Employment Application, 2013

So freaking delicious, from my favorite restau...

So freaking delicious, from my favorite restaurant Le Madeline 🙂 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dear Hiring Manager:

Wanted: Full or Part-time Job involving food, writing or any combination of the two. Traveling with car service a must: ( I have NO sense of direction and that is an understatement)  It is NO joke. It is NOT covered by the ADA but  why isn’t it?  Mode of transportation:  Airlines: Private jet or first class preferable, business class necessary, economy, okay..if I must. Stand by: Been there, done that.

Interests: Food, Special Interest: Dessert, Food TV shows, Favorite all time dessert: Sacher Torte: Original or Fake, German or Austrian or American from Kew Gardens, Queens at the Homestead Gourmet with raspberry jam.I had it every year growing up for my birthday and I miss it. RIP Teddy.

Special Skills: Having traveled (for free) in my childhood I am extremely knowledgeable to rate hotels in addition to their restaurants and room service if you would like me to do that. I do not shy away from extra assignments, in fact, I just offered a very, informative link to the hotel industry. Can someone call ‘The Hilton’s’, please?

Proof of Expertise: Reading my blog, references, and restaurant owners in the area. I wrote a review of “The Flying Pig” for the local newspaper, it is not my fault they closed the restaurant, we still miss it, I assure you. Receipts upon request.

Good Points: Very amicable, charming, an excellent communicator, doesn’t like alcohol. Does not consider sorbet a dessert, perhaps as a palette cleanser and no weird flavors like octopus or lizard. Prefers cakes over pies, ice cream in addition to the cake never in lieu of the cake. Fresh fruit on request, ha ha ha ha ha. For a special occasion our family went out to a fancy restaurant and our daughter, the vegetarian, ordered blueberries and strawberries for $12 or $15 dollars and we said “no.” She was beyond furious even after I offered to make her some at home. Cookies: any time, all the time, but if you don’t want to make them, that’s fine, go to a bakery instead, Just sayin’…

Bad Points: I confess, favorite comfort food is still Kraft American cheese slices on soft bread (not Wonder bread. Anymore.) with light spreadable “butter and a chocolate related drink, this could include hot chocolate, Yoo-Hoo or chocolate egg creams. Diet Pepsi/Coke/Root Beer acceptable too. There are certain food items and beverages that go together well. Something salty would go with this dish, chips, pretzels, nothing special.

Additional Experience: Watching TV shows with my husband on our couch while eating our dessert not to be confused with Pre-D which immediately follows our meal but is a predecessor of the real “D” (which as you may have figured out is: Dessert. Ice Cream, pastry from French bakeries, even an occasional cupcake will do if we have nothing else. (Okay, maybe a Twinkie) and Baklava, yum, (another post on Baklava is also a blog post.)

Market Reach and Development: I need to be the first person or close enough to TRY NEW PRODUCTS, that is a natural field for me, I spy them on the shelves, I immediately buy them. Case in point: “*Candy Cotton Grapes.” I did not stop until I found them, it took 3 stores but I HAD TO HAVE THEM. I excel at wanting, finding and buying new products, my mother said I’ve been like that since I was 5, haven’t stopped. (see the entry “Cotton Candy Grapes” on my blog.

Cooking Skills: I make a mean chicken soup, I can roast a chicken with lemon and love, my baking skills are superb but limited to Banana Bread with the following options (plain, chocolate chip or chocolate chip and raisin) The latter being my son’s absolute favorite and the one thing he actually brags about (and hoards) from his friends.  I can also bake Pumpkin bread with or without raisins (without for my daughter who doesn’t like the texture of raisins and many other things) Oh, I knew I would forget something an award-winning Pea Soup. (Okay not a real award but it deserves one.) I learned how to make Chopped Chicken Liver when I was ten by a neighbor…

Excellent Writing Skills: To summarize the meals, service, attention to detail and I interact beautifully with all levels of  employees. Note:  I believe that you need to be kind to everyone and yes, it’s hard but at least try. Karma is karma, I’m not perfect, neither are you.

Overall summary: Delightful person with excellent communication skills and a love of food (junky or refined), enthusiastic, funny, silly, and a charming dinner companion. This applicant plays no games, she can’t wear high heels because they hurt her feet, although she would try fancier flats if necessary, she is willing to adapt. She has dancing green eyes and brown curly hair and only wears lipstick which her mother has bugged her about for the last two months. She is thinking about being dragged to one of those fancy stores like Nordstrom (which I used to call Nordstrom’s before my daughter corrected me for the 19th time ( with the ever so charming and obvious eye roll to the sky) for a make-over. Plus, I need new clothing too.

This candidate, I can assure you, will never, ever be late. She will always, unless there is a natural disaster, be early because she had/has  European parents and there WAS no other option. She is honest, she can keep secrets and is always reliable.

Take a chance. At the very least, bring her in for an interview.

Pretty please with rainbow sprinkles on top?

Yours truly,

Me.

PS: If you call my friend Maureen she will tell you that at times I do eat pizza with either grape or strawberry jam on top. I do not deny this one bit. In fact, I am proud of it.

Dear Hillary,

Official portrait of Secretary of State Hillar...

Official portrait of Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I want to start by saying that I know I should use your formal title because I do, very much, respect and admire EVERYTHING you have done. I just feel we, as in “we the people” know you” so please forgive me. I want you to know that your friends, fans and neighbors are all worried about you and you are in our thoughts every day. I’m not just saying this; it’s true.

I’ve never been one to focus much on the health of any political figure before but now I find myself waking up in the morning and checking the news for an update about you, in fact checking several times during the day and of course at night, before I go to bed. As a mother myself, I cried when I saw a photograph of Chelsea’s “anguished” face as the newspaper described it. Granted, she could have just spent a harrowing time with the paparazzi or gotten an old, limp salad in the cafeteria but my bet is that Chelsea is worrying about her Mom. I didn’t see a photo of your husband, President Bill Clinton, exit but I can imagine he is very concerned as well.

We all are but I want you to know THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ANYTHING POLITICAL NOW OR IN THE FUTURE.  I don’t care about 2016, I only care about today. I want you to be well enough for your doctors (we share one of them, by the way) to release you so that you can go home. Home to New York or Washington, wherever you choose. Your only prescription now is for rest and relaxation. Think of it as a Hillary cruise. If you want red tulips, you will get red tulips, if you feel like pizza, people will deliver whole pies to you. An egg sandwich in the morning, well, we all know what deli that will be coming from!

I just wanted you to know that all of us are thinking of you, praying for you (those of us that pray) and keeping you in our thoughts. Get well Madame Secretary of State, because we really and truly miss you.

P.S. Not to belabor a point  but I still believe that you are OWED a great big apology and a HUGE bouquet of flowers and dark chocolate for at least a year from those uncivilized idiots (should I have not said that?) that did not believe you were sick in the first place. I’m a Libra and we believe in fairness, that they haven’t apologized, to me, is utterly shameful. You are a better person than I am. This is why we need you! Come home soon.
With great fondness and admiration,

Laurie from Hibernationnow.worldpress.com

Plinky: Who Was Your Favorite Teacher?

  • Best Teacher
  • Apple For The Teacher
    Timken Roller Bearing Co., calendar, September 1950, teacher at desk Her name was Mrs. Diner and she was a teacher in Kew Gardens, Queens at PS 99. She was my sixth grade teacher and I remember her kindness and her warmth. I remember how she looked based on a very old photograph of us that someone took. I don’t think she did anything extraordinary but being a teacher was important to her; she made her students FEEL important and loved. Mrs. Diner was a teacher to remember, she inspired us all. Thank you, Mrs. Diner.
    P.S. 30 years later my mom met her on an airplane and Mrs. Diner remembered me. I was absolutely thrilled!

"Share a memory about the house in which you grew up……"

Kids From Kew Gardens, Queens

apartment building

Not everybody is lucky enough to grow up in a house (Plinky) We grew up in an apartment building and not knowing anything else, for us, it was perfect. Imagine living in a world where you could walk down two flights of stairs where your best friend lived whose mother and grandma baked home-made vanilla crescent cookies and surprise cookies (I still dream about these) that had a Hershey’s chocolate kiss inside. I can still taste the crushed hazelnuts in the batter. Imagine going up a flight of stairs to babysit for someone you considered your pretend baby sister anyway and getting paid for that. This little, lost girl longed for attention and for someone to love and I was her older friend. I bought her candy bars with my money that her mother wouldn’t allow, I sat with her while her mother cooked two chicken legs in the toaster oven or when her mom stayed in her bedroom, under the covers for days. I watched that family from one flight of stairs away, practically living inside their house and I watched them unravel as well. A tragedy. My very first best friend growing up was a boy and he lived three flights down and we spent the first years of our lives together; our moms met in the maternity ward of the local hospital where we were born and yes, I am mere hours older than he is but a whole day. He had a gray, barking schnauzer but to us, he was Lassie. His mom made me my first milkshake, I ate at his house probably as much as I ate in my own. To this day, a mere fifty-fife years later than when we were born I am proud to still call him my friend, my oldest friend; I call him Brian and we both laugh.

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The Flying Pig Restaurant, Mount Kisco, NY

I’m sad tonight. The realization that my most favorite restaurant is probably closing at the end of the month is becoming a reality. Always a dreamer, I wouldn’t let myself feel that the one place that I have NEVER been served a bad meal was going out of business. This can’t be happening, this just wasn’t any old restaurant, it was “The Pig” as we affectionately called it, where we had family dinners; it was like home only it tasted so much better.

For the many hundreds of you who have read and enjoyed my previous article“The Best Thing I Ever Ate” (Food Network-Holiday Edition please read this. As you know, I love me some GOOD FOOD and yes, we all know I have a soft spot for the sweet stuff. Believe me, I won’t disappoint you here. I promise.

I don’t think Chef Lesley Sutter likes the thought of saying good-bye any more than I do so our great hope is that she will open another restaurant in the near future in the same area soon. I will let you know as soon as I know or check out The Flying Pig’s Facebook Page.

I have never been to a restaurant like this one before, one where no matter what I ordered “I never had a bad meal.” I’ve been talking to other customers lately, sharing our grief and a woman I sat next to said the same exact thing to me. That “it was a restaurant you could count on for having a great meal every time you came.” The salads and sandwiches for lunch are sublime, in particular I loved the Mediterranean Flatbread Sandwich (minus the olives but that’s just me) an incredible blend of hummus, lemon, feta cheese, cucumbers and arugula layered on soft flatbread. The portions were enormous; I always had a big piece left to take home for my daughter. It was a tough choice to choose between that and the local goat cheese sandwich with avocado, celery, walnut pesto, on home-made bread, or a pulled pork sandwich or a veggie burger. You want variety?  There’s ALWAYS variety here! Sometimes I was in a salad mood and would pick from one of their many specialty salads, (chopped salad which included lentils (yum) and blue cheese-if you wanted it, caesar, cobb, salmon etc. always non-fussy but perfectly put together and if you don’t like a certain ingredient, you can ask them to hold it, no one will hate you for it, they are more than willing to oblige. I LIKE that.

Dinner, oh dinner. Once a week like religion, our eyes were trained to read the list of specials they had on the menu every night. Look no further, you couldn’t go wrong if you tried. Some specials included: fish and chips ( I don’t eat fish anywhere but here, it’s light, delicate and served with a wonderful remoulade/tartar sauce),  a vegetarian pasta dish with cauliflower and capers, and other veggies, fresh from the farm, crunchy and not overcooked. There’s a fabulous steak dish, a chicken dish, fish (all types) and heaven help us, sometimes there are braised short ribs. Individual pizzas are also on the menu for lunch and dinner. Say no more, they melt in your mouth. One suggestion: leave room for dessert.

The pastry chef, Shelly Smedberg  first delighted my family with her home-made pop tarts which endeared me to the restaurant forever. I’m not talking your junky variety out of the box pop-tarts, ladies and gentlemen, but home-made equivalents made with fresh fruit and delectable icing on top. I hope to see these babies somewhere, sometime soon because I already miss them. Her home-made pop-tarts are to die for, they are as good as it gets; I ALWAYS want them. Since they are not on the menu all the time (and I don’t know why they aren’t) you can satisfy your sweet tooth with all the varieties of sweet, (love the texture) bread puddings or Classic English sticky toffee pudding, or S’mores to name a few. All, like heaven in a frothy cloud of sweetness.

There is a quality about The Flying Pig I can’t quite describe, it’s the sense of community, the friendliness of the people that go there, the kindness of the people who work there. This restaurant is a group effort, not to mention, it’s  farm-to- table organic, sustainable food restaurant. I have eaten at many high-end, good quality restaurants and I have enjoyed them; they all seem to be missing one simple ingredient that The Flying Pig on Lexington has; I thing that ingredient must be a hefty heaping of pure love.

The Tree Of Life – Movie (Pop Cop)

"Tree of Life"

Image by Will-travel via Flickr

What does Jurassic Park, LSD and The Discovery Channel have in common?  They’re pretty much all in the movie called The Tree Of Life. I know, some people are oohing and ahhing over this film like it’s the second coming of The Sound of Music but frankly, it is not. It’s one weird ass long film and even though the effete intellectual snobs are calling it magnificent, I must disagree. A little. I have to say that part of it is magnificent in a visceral way.

Yes, the images and photography are fabulous but there are so many of them one after another, you get lost. And after about an hour I was looking at my watch which is NEVER a good sign. The movie opens with chanting in the background or angels singing or music you might hear in church. Don’t get me wrong, it’s melodic and beautiful and with it come quick images of molecules and lava, sperm and egg, church windows and creation of life images. They are amazing to look at and even though the movie is really long, part of me wanted to watch it in slow motion to savor each image but that would have taken the entire day and night.

Images of brothers, butterflies, baseball and bubble baths abound. The story takes place in the 1950’s in the Midwest where Brad Pitt stars as the stern, mean father. Jessica Chastain  is the nurturing mother and of all characters, I would have liked to see her character developed. I never did see Jessica Chastain before this movie but I’m impressed. Where has she been all our lives? With her beautiful red hair and her ivory skin she is amazing. I think now that this movie is out she has catapulted into stardom. One might say that there is no more character development for a mom in the 50’s but you want to know more about her other than that she is the fun parent, dancing, whirling and nurturing her children. She will go far, if she hasn’t gone far already.

Was I supposed to know that the big dinosaur beating down on the little dinosaur was supposed to portray the father beating down emotionally (physically too?) on his son(s). Was I to infer that the people on the beach (or wherever they were) in the end was meaningful and significant in a clear-cut kind of way? Heck no.Where exactly were they? The beach, heaven, Honolulu? It’s one (pretty) question mark after the other with very little dialogue and not much character development.

Yes, it’s pretty. It’s beautiful to watch ( for the most part.) Not always easy to understand. Pretty does not a magnificent film make. I’ve heard stories of people leaving the movie theaters during the movie and demanding their money back and I’ve heard of people who think this is the best movie ever made, that it was brilliant in every way. I would put it right in the middle.

In my audience, an artsy theater with plush red seats, no one said anything. When the lights were back on people looked at each other with question marks on their faces. The last person out of the theater was a middle-aged couple;  the woman turned to her husband and asked “what did you think?” He said “good!” She turned back to him, laughed, and said “You really didn’t understand a thing, did you?” He guffawed and admitted he did not; luckily she did not either.

That sums up the film in so many ways. It’s beautiful, confusing, long, magnificent, boring and asks but does not answer questions about the creation of life or death. It creates questions that are never answered. Too many things about the family are left out. A line from the movie was: “the way of nature, the way of grace, you have to choose.”If you understand that, great. If you don’t, join the club.

ICD Jewelery Store – Meant To Be

This is a true story about how things sometimes work out the way they should. Oprah used to talk about that a lot.  Synchronicity, things happening because they are “meant to be.” Yesterday, I wrote a blog called “Saying Goodbye To Oprah” today I experienced what she has always talked about.

1) I had a new Doctor’s appointment and when I asked the new Doctor if she was ever in touch with the Doctor who had retired she said “in fact, I’m seeing him tonight.”  I asked her to please tell him about an article I wrote about the loss of my dear friend “Loving Dawn” that was published in a local magazine. She said she would but as I was about to leave I remembered I had copies in my trunk that I had just picked up from the editor the day before. I ran down and got the magazine, happy to show them.  No coincidence there.

2) I stopped by the florist to order my son’s girlfriend’s corsage, continued on to the library and decided to go to a shoe store.

3) I parked my car, (having no sense of direction whatsoever) where I thought the shoe store was. I couldn’t find it. It turned out that I parked in front of a store called ICD Jewelery. When I saw the name I remembered my son saying that he bought his girlfriend’s birthday present there. The door was held open and I decided to walk in and browse. In the past I had always assumed that it was just high-end stuff but it isn’t. It’s a wonderful combination of completely affordable jewelery AND beautiful expensive, sparkling pieces.

4) I  looked around keeping my daughter’s upcoming 17th birthday in mind, I even saw the lovely bracelet my son had bought. There were beautiful pieces in EVERY price range. After chatting with a nice woman named Sarah I softly said:  ” You are doing this store a disservice, you really should advertise more.” She smiled and said “can I repeat that?” I said “I guess so.” She called the owner over, an absolutely stunning and  beautiful woman (she should be a model) named Varda Singer and asked me to repeat my comment. I did, I asked where they advertised because I had no idea that this store sold things in all price ranges. I am the type of person that should live with focus groups. I try every new product, I can predict if something will work or not, I know “star” quality before others. If I really liked this store my friends would too. If I didn’t know about this store they probably didn’t either.

5) The owner, Varda, said “she pays so much in advertising in publications it’s sometimes not worth it.”  After talking with her about the jewelery, both high-end and inexpensive, she fell silent. She looked at me, took a gorgeous pink beaded bracelet off the display, handed it to me and said, “word of mouth: this is how I like to get people to the store.” Before I knew it she took the price tag off and presented the bracelet to me as a present.”If people like it and ask where you got it, you tell them.”  No one had ever given me a present like that and I was shocked.  I said “No, no, no, no… ” but she insisted and put it on my arm.

6) All she knew was that I was a mom window shopping for her daughter. She had no idea I wrote a blog.  We laughed and talked some more and out of the blue she threw in a Hebrew word that I recognized immediately.  The word “Beshert” it’s meaning:  “meant to be” or “destiny.”

7) I told them I wanted to blog about this experience (I am not a paid employee nor am I a sponsor or a PR agent and I am not getting any kind of kickback!)  I asked Varda if we could tie this special day in with my blog. If people read this blog and wanted to go to the store, perhaps they could get a $5 dollar discount? She thought about it, shook her head and said with a smile said:”please tell people that if they just drop by the store and mention your blog, they will get a free “bracelet” too.”

I will REPEAT THAT: Mention that you read this blog and get a free bracelet. Stop by there, look around, you won’t be disappointed.  They are located in the town of Chappaqua, NY, 75 South Greeley Avenue. You can reach them at 914-238-3646 or at ICDJLTD@aol.com. or visit:  http://www.icdjewelry.com/

Thank you again, Varda, for my pink bracelet.

My free gift from ICD Jewelery in Chappaqua, NY