Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Laurie's Cobalt World Blog Has Moved

I've finally bitten the bullet to learn how to host my own blog. So I've moved it to my own website. Yikes! What an adventure.

For those of you who have subscribed to this blog as a feed, please take a moment to visit the new blog and subscribe to the feed there. Then you can delete the feed to this site.

If you haven't subscribed to the feed, now's a great time to do it. If you use Yahoo! or Google as your homepage, there's a simple button to push to get you started. It only takes a minute or so to set up. Then the titles to new posts will show up on your homepage just like the news or other items you have included in your customized homepage. You won't miss one that way and neither will you have to drop by just to see if there's something new.

There's also a more generic option available for those who use neither of these for their home pages.

The blog posts that were here have been moved to the new blog. New posting is already underway over there.

I hope that all of you will visit me frequently at


Thursday, April 10, 2008

Pamper Yourself At Breakfast

Yesterday, I was making myself one of my favorite breakfasts. I was enjoying the anticipation of having something delicious when disaster struck. Okay, that was a little overly dramatic for breakfast. Let me rephrase. I was disappointed to realize that I was out of a main ingredient.

I teach my children to read their recipe first and make sure that they have all of the ingredients before they begin cooking. I wish I could follow my own advice better!

One of my favorite breakfasts is steel cut oats with apricots and almonds. I was out of apricots. They really make all of the difference in this dish.

Laurie's Cobalt World Blog has moved. Finish this article at

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Family Night Helps Me Balance

I'm reading four books right now - a book on ecommerce, a book of etiquette, War and Peace (it's great!), and 91 Mistakes Smart Salespeople Make by Tim Connor, bestselling author of Soft Sell. The first third of the book is strictly about attitude and it applies to everyone, not just salespeople.

Mistake #20 is "Being out of Balance." The author divides our lives into eleven areas:

  1. family
  2. work
  3. finances
  4. friends
  5. social relationships
  6. spirituality
  7. self-development
  8. physical well-being
  9. personal interests
  10. career interests
  11. fun

Laurie's Cobalt World has moved. Finished this article at

Monday, March 31, 2008

Laurie's Cobalt World Moves To Mayberry

You remember the Andy Griffith Show don't you? I'm sure you do if you were born before 1970 and am reasonably sure even if you weren't. Mayberry is the fictitious town where Sheriff Taylor and his son Opie lived with Aunt Bea.

I love the way they lived life in Mayberry. They enjoyed meals together, sat on the swing after dinner, looked after each other, and got together for simple things like a talent show, playing music on the porch, or a school play. Ah, such a gentle life they led!

Laurie's Cobalt World has moved. Finish this article at

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Cocktail Tasting Party

Last evening we hosted an informal cocktail tasting party. I invited a small group over to help us test some non-alcoholic cocktail recipes. It was a lot of fun.

You might ask why I wanted to focus on non-alcoholic cocktail recipes. The answer is simple. There are many sources for alcoholic cocktails and many of those recipes are tried and true.

There are fewer resources for non-alcoholic cocktails. But there are many people for whom an alcoholic cocktail is not an option or is not preferred. Consider the following:

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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

I'm Planning An Afternoon Tea

I really must be a slow mover - at least in some areas. I've been thinking about hosting an afternoon tea in honor of my mother for several years now. This year, I'm actually going to do it.

I am so excited about it. It will be held on Mother's Day and the guests will include our local family.

Following the English example, this tea will include both male and female guests. We often think of matrons with floral dresses and large hats sipping tea, but teas were originally for everyone.

Laurie's Cobalt World Blog has moved. Finish this post at

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Announcing Our New Monthly Newsletter

In less than two weeks, I'll be sending out the first ever newsletter for Laurie's Cobalt World. I'm very pleased with how it is turning out. I hope that you will take a minute or two to sign up for the newsletter.

Just go to our special newsletter sign-up page and enter your email address. There are a few more questions that you can answer or leave blank. Answering them will help us build a better newsletter, but that's entirely up to you.*

Once you click "Subscribe To List," you will be sent

Laurie's Cobalt World Blog has moved. Finish this post at

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

In Praise Of Compote

“Compote” seems to be a word not well known among the younger generations, but it is well worth holding onto. Compote is a very versatile and very delicious dish, either served alone or with other equally delicious offerings.

Compote is a fruit dish, often served warm. Frequently it is a mixture of fruit rather than a single fruit, sweetened and perhaps flavored. Compote can be made sugar-free and/or fat-free. It can be made from dried fruit, fresh fruit, frozen fruit, or canned fruit. There are no hard-and-fast rules, but rather many choices and many successful combinations.

Laurie's Cobalt World Blog has moved. Finish this post at

Monday, March 10, 2008

End-Of-The-Academic-Year Gift Giving

May is just around the corner and with it comes a host of banquets, recitals, graduations, and every other kind of end-of-the-academic-year occasion you can think of.

Now is the time to plan for thank you gifts for teachers, scout leaders, coaches, piano teachers, dance instructors, and all of the people who enrich our lives with their personal services.

A small token of our appreciation can

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Friday, March 7, 2008

Getting A Large Family Meal On The Table - All At One Time

Easter is coming soon and many families will be having a large meal together. But will everything make it to the table at the appointed time? It’s a huge job to coordinate a large meal. Here are some ideas to help you bring it all together.


The first step is to visualize the end you have in mind. In your mind’s eye, look at the table, the people, the place settings, candles, and flowers. Do you have everything you need?

If you do not have enough of one type of china, think about

Monday, March 3, 2008

Love, Weddings, Cake, and Cake Stands

My brother married his childhood sweetheart. It's a sweet story, but doesn't sound all that unusual. What's unusual about the story is that there was a 25-year interruption between the time they were sweethearts and the time they got married.

When my brother falls, he falls hard. But their parents thought they were too young to be serious and broke off their relationship.

My brother didn't date another girl all throughout highschool. And he never forgot his first love.

Nearly twenty-five years later,

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Monday, February 25, 2008

Decorating With Cobalt Blue

You love the look of individual cobalt glass pieces. You are in love with a cobalt vase. You want cobalt dishes for your kitchen. But how do you bring it all together in your interior design scheme?

We're extremely fortunate in this modern and contemporary era not to be limited to specific colors.

Remember the 1970's?

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Thursday, February 21, 2008

New Items Get Us Excited!

I'm not sure who gets more excited when a delivery truck pulls up me or our Chihuahuas. They bark out their enthusiasm and run to the door. So do I - run, that is, not bark. I love receiving new cobalt pieces. It feels like Christmas. You'd think that I get to keep it all for myself!

Yesterday, we received two new items. My husband and I were delighted with both, but Andrew clearly favors the large coffee glass mugs. I think he exclaimed something like, "Now we're talking!" I don't drink coffee, so I can't really relate, but he was beaming and said he wanted some of them. I just loved the dark cobalt color and the feel of the mug in my hand.

Laurie's Cobalt World Blog has moved. Finish reading this post at

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Fabulous Gratin

A good number of years ago, my husband and I had the opportunity to host my family for Christmas dinner. Before that time and ever since, our tradition is to go to my parents' home for Christmas. Somehow managed to get the family to travel to Atlanta, where we lived at the time. I can't really remember how we did that.

We were very excited about this meal. I researched recipes for weeks in advance. We ordered a standing rib roast. I tried out recipes to be sure they weren't flops before the "big day."

When the time came,

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