It was a gorgeous fall day here in Cincinnati: near 70 degrees and sunny, a bit breezy but it made the swirling leaves really interesting.
Diamondqueen and the Hooligans decided to hang out at home, so Mom and I made plans for a restaurant and activities that we normally can’t pursue with Hooligans in tow. We decided on lunch at The Grand Finale in Glendale, preceded by a visit to a nearby needlework store, Stitches. (As I was getting out of the car, my old friend Holly drove up, which was a pleasant surprise for both of us.)
I’ve been looking all fall for certain patterns of black fabric. I’ve been working on a cross-stitch picture in three panels of the Headless Horseman; when it’s done I’m thinking of making it into a kind of art quilt, maybe even something with a headstone motif at the top. So I’ve been hunting for black fabric that’s marbled with gray and has a some movement. I purchased a few fat quarters on our recent trip to Holmes Co. in the quilt shops up there, but I still wasn’t satisfied.
I found what I was looking for at the Stitches shop, plus I bought a bag of pearl cotton skeins in various colors. Then, on to lunch!
I have a favorite dish at Grand Finale – chicken ginger, a pounded chicken breast, marinated, with a walnut and ginger topping; a salad with house dressing (their salads always taste so fresh); and a spinach crepe on the side. I’m tempted by other dishes, but I know this is the only place I can get this particular meal, and we seem to make it to Grand Finale only about twice a year, so it’s hard to break out of my pattern.
We got to sit in the main dining room, where antiquity and Victorian opulence are abundant, in one of the small window tables that overlook the street and window boxes full of pink geraniums and, oddly, some wine bottle corks. (If you look at the photo on the bottom left of the restaurant’s website, our table was the last one along the windows before the glass room divider with the painting hung in front of it and the big stained glass piece just beyond.) Mom always orders the chicken ginger as well, and the servers always joke that we’re making it too easy for them. We certainly enjoyed our meal.
After that we drove up to Moeller High School for an antique show. Some days you just can’t stop spending money. I bought several old crochet hooks with very tiny hooks (one had to be even smaller than a size 14), two little metal Christmas bells just like the one I got for St. Nicholas when I was in second grade (and completely cherished), a big metal wall hanging of a horse head inside a horseshoe for Mom for Christmas (yes, I showed it to her first, so I’m not ruining a surprise), and a large Ziplock bag filled with vintage needlework items: spools of thread, old buttons, crochet cotton, and other goodies.
It was the kind of can’t-beat-it day that makes you say, “Life is good!” and mean it.