Mardi Gras Repurposed

The original Mardi Gras beads were glass. A friend gave us these, and it turns out they make a beautiful tie-back for the new kitchen curtains.
beads

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Thanks Brennan’s

We borrowed an idea from Brennan’s this morning and made the cinnamon-sugar toasted French bread that they serve with their famous breakfast.frenchtoast

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Thanks Christian

Another beautiful picture by Christian Senger who stayed with us awhile back.christiansengerkitchen

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GraNOLA

GraNOLA
Get it? It’s the clever name for our newest breakfast offering, which is hand-crafted in small batches by two culinary entrepreneurs in the adjoining Bywater neighborhood. We chose their Louisiana Sweet version that includes organic oats, pecans, and candied Satsuma peel.

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Portents

buds and beads
Beads and buds have appeared on our fence. Signs that Mardi Gras and spring are almost here.

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Streetcars Return to the Marigny

We’re pretty darned excited about the news that after more than half a century, streetcars will be returning to our neighborhood.

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Mr. Okra

You can hear him coming. “We got okra! We got bananas! We got mustard greens!”

From loud speakers in his pickup the Okra Man summons his customers with the sort of sing-song delivery you’d expect to hear somewhere in the Caribbean. But our neighborhood is the next closest thing perhaps.

Street by street he combs the Marigny in a pickup full of produce, pulling over to meet the people who come out to the curb to buy.

There was a momentary crisis awhile back when his brightly painted truck broke down and was deemed irreparable. But the community rallied to his aid, and in the process Mr. Okra became something of a celebrity and the subject of a documentary.

The new truck is painted just like the old one, but doesn’t have quite the same character. No matter. The real character is behind the wheel.

Mr. Okra's Old Truck

Mr. Okra's Old Truck

Mr. Okra's New Truck

Mr. Okra's New Truck

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New in the Neighborhood

In the next block over the historic facade of a building on St. Claude Avenue built in 1926 has been rescued from beneath a nasty sixties-era metal facade, as the building nears completion of its transformation into the New Orleans Healing Center. Soon it will bustle again with folks arriving to buy organic groceries, take a class, do some yoga, get a massage or participate in any of dozens of other activities that fall into the facility’s mission to be “a holistic, safe, sustainable center that heals, fulfills and empowers the individual and the community by providing services and programs promoting physical, nutritional, emotional, intellectual, environmental and spiritual well-being.”

Pretty cool mission we think. And handy for us, since we’re directly behind. Here’s the colorful cubist view of the final construction that we get from our side as captured by our good friend and frequent guest Scott Ellis.

sunset-colors

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“Happy” Holidays

Last year Clara starred in our holiday card, this year it was Happy’s turn. Once we were able to keep her from shaking off the antlers long enough to take a picture!

2010xmascard

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Our Neighborhood Gallery Scene

In a recent interview about the upcoming Prospect 1.5 city-wide art exposition, Dan Cameron (formerly the senior curator of the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York for more than a decade, and now the New Orleans Contemporary Arts Center’s director of visual arts) had some cool stuff to say about our neighborhood galleries:

“A helpful way to think of New Orleans’ gallery system right now is by comparison to the New York gallery structure, pre-East Village. The mid-1980s saw a surge of new money in the art world, as well as a dramatic rise of interest in younger artists’ work, and the more established galleries were, as a whole, slow to respond to these developments. Within a 2-year period more than a hundred galleries opened in a completely different neighborhood, offering art by emerging artists at affordable prices, and the art world was never the same. On a smaller scale, that’s what happening today in New Orleans with the St. Claude Avenue co-op galleries, which are doing some of the best exhibitions in town, but most collectors still don’t know about. In short, there is a very positive shake-up happening in the established order of things here, and we want to be at the forefront of that change.”

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