The past few days have been a mix of steamy temperatures and sudden downpours, one of which eventually got to the dancing chicken. We ended up having to move it into the oven to finish cooking, but it was still delicious (despite eating dinner at 10pm LOL). Other eats have been this white bean, sausage and escarole soup and a caprese salad to take advantage of our oregano surplus.

According to our neighbors, Gladys lived to be 102 in this house, and would doll herself up in a fancy hat and gloves to go out for lunch right until the end. She loved hydrangeas and had 12 different varieties of them planted around the yard. I am still getting acquainted with the yard and am an absolute novice gardener, but take so much delight in Gladys’s plantings. Something beautiful always seems to emerge with the changing seasons: the spring lilac and forsythia, the peonies, butterfly bush, roses, and hydrangeas. And then in the late fall, a set of leafy goodness by the fence that looks pretty nondescript during most of the spring and summer reveals gorgeous burnt gold and red branches in the late fall. Almost feels like mid-summer this morning — the sun is out and 80 degrees is on its way! Have a wonderful spring Sunday!
Wow, check out these beauties from the Victorian Bakery!!! Twelve summers ago, A and I moved to town about two weeks apart. We sat next to each other at the fall faculty orientation and had a spat about whether we believed people could or could not change. That set the tone for the next twelve years, where the two of us have loved nothing more than to debate an idea to death, fly down conversational rabbit holes, and basically just enjoy jawing off to one another about all matters large and small. A introduced me to the Victorian Bakery, which originally was run out of the basement of a home in the neighborhood we both were living in at the time. The smell of warm dough would waft out of there when you’d walk by in the mornings. A told me that if you called a day ahead, they would bake you this amazing
chocolate double-layer cake. Finding this out was one of those special little secret things that I liked so much about living in this city.

A loves chocolate cake (for a long time he said it was the only thing he knew how to make), and would occasionally call them up and order one to eat, piece by piece, throughout the week. So for the past couple of years, I have tried to remember to order him a Victorian Bakery chocolate cake for his birthday. But given that this year we’re celebrating socially-distantly, I also threw in a last-minute order for a few cupcakes for JB, Min and I to enjoy while sitting across the yard from A. Couldn’t believe how pretty they were when I opened the box, so had to post a pic of them here! A absolutely abhors any kind of photographs and social media so I won’t post the awesome photo I have of him with the cake. But A, if you’re reading this:

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!