Hot Chocolate with “Spice”

Hot Chocolate with “Spice”

Want your hot chocolate with a bit of kick to it? There are several ways to bring zing to an old standard. Variations for the over 21 crowd are myriad, essentially hot chocolate or hot cocoa cooked the desired way and then “spiked” with one’s preferred alcohol. Possibilities include: bourbon, Kahlua, rum, whiskey, brandy, vodka, Bailey’s Irish… Continue Reading

French Hot Chocolate

French Hot Chocolate

French Hot Chocolate – called le Chocolat Chaud – is distinguished from traditional hot chocolate in that it is much richer and thicker, and less sweet. True French hot chocolate is always made from brick chocolate, the higher the cacao percentage the better, and never from cocoa powder. The texture is velvety smooth, a true “death by… Continue Reading

Hot Chocolate: A History

Hot Chocolate: A History

We are entering the cold weather where cuddling up by the fire with a steaming mug of something warm, such as hot chocolate, is an evening favorite. So here is a short history of this delicious beverage. Between 3,000 and 4,000 years ago, cacao plants were first cultivated in Mesoamerica by the Olmec, living in… Continue Reading

Tomorrow is Guy Fawkes day in the UK

Tomorrow is Guy Fawkes day in the UK

November 5th is “Bonfire Night” in the UK, the day when Britons everywhere set fire to massive piles of flammables, light fireworks, and host parades. Straw dummies representing Fawkes, as well as those of contemporary political figures, are tossed into the bonfire. Why, you may ask? Well, here is a bit of history– The beginnings ~ Guy… Continue Reading

Floriography ~ R and S flowers

Floriography ~ R and S flowers

Today I’m bringing the seventh installment in my study into Floriography  —  the cryptological communication through flower use or arrangement. Past posts can be read by clicking these links– Floriography history & A and B flowers Floriography C and D flowers Floriography F and G flowers Floriography H, I, and J flowers Floriography L and M flowers Floriography… Continue Reading

Floriography ~ N, O, and P flowers

Floriography ~ N, O, and P flowers

Today I’m bringing the sixth installment in my study into Floriography  —  the cryptological communication through flower use or arrangement. Past posts can be read by clicking these links– Floriography history & A and B flowers Floriography C and D flowers Floriography F and G flowers Floriography H, I, and J flowers Floriography L and M flowers    … Continue Reading

Floriography ~ L and M flowers

Floriography ~ L and M flowers

Here is the fifth installment in my study into Floriography  —  the cryptological communication through flower use or arrangement. Past posts can be read by clicking these links– Floriography history & A and B flowers Floriography C and D flowers Floriography F and G flowers Floriography H, I, and J flowers     Lily of the Valley… Continue Reading

Vocabulary Rocks! J is for…

Vocabulary Rocks! J is for…

Carrying on in my search for unusual words and origins, time to tackle the letter J. More fascinating history lessons in etymology and strange words for your enjoyment! For previous entries on this topic, a blog category search for “vocabulary” will bring up the archived posts. Search box is on the left. I LOVE vocabulary!   Java/Joe… Continue Reading

Card Racks

Card Racks

Gentlemen and ladies carried personal cards – often in highly decorative card cases – which they gave to friends and acquaintances. Personalized cards were presented as a matter of course when making a first visit to someone newly arrived in the neighborhood, when calling for the first time on newly weds, when paying visits of… Continue Reading

Georgian Era Coin “Love Tokens”

Georgian Era Coin “Love Tokens”

Two hundred years ago, love tokens offered an enduring and romantic means of expressing devotion to a cherished person, often but not always a lover. Acceptance of the token admitted a return of affection. One common practice was to personalize legitimate coins, usually by smoothing and engraving them (by hand) with a message or romantic imagery. Engravings were most… Continue Reading

Dashing David Lyon

Dashing David Lyon

I love this portrait of David Lyon. Isn’t he dashing? Possibly a bit Darcy-esque? He has the refined air, proud stance, slender musculature, and elegant, chiseled face we all imagine when envisioning Mr. Darcy. His richly nuanced clothes, from the fur lining his coat to the slim cane and dandyish handkerchief, the gentleman in this portrait screams high position and… Continue Reading

Floriography ~ H, I, and J flowers

Floriography ~ H, I, and J flowers

Continuing on with my study in Floriography  —  the cryptological communication through flower use or arrangement. For the first post covering A and B flowers, as well as a short history on the “language of flowers”, click HERE. For C and D flowers, click THIS LINK, and for F and G flowers this is the… Continue Reading

Vocabulary Rocks! I is for…

Vocabulary Rocks! I is for…

Moving along in the alphabet to the letter I… more fascinating history lessons in etymology and strange words for your enjoyment! For previous entries on this topic, a blog category search for “vocabulary” will bring up the archived posts. I LOVE vocabulary!   Illinois The state of Illinois is a French version of the name of… Continue Reading