Welcome to the Friday 5ive, a weekly blog post about five things that caught my attention this week.
1) Sunday was Easter and this year for dessert I ordered a cake from Carousel Cakes in Nanuet, NY. One of my sons is not a fan of chocolate (I have no idea where he got that from), so this pretty vanilla cake with strawberry custard filling fit the bill. Not only was it pretty to look at it, it was tasty too. We ordered it from Goldbelly, and we have had such good luck ordering from there. If you're looking for a tasty treat to send to someone special, head to Goldbelly.com, they have all kinds of foods from all over the country, many from famous chefs and restaurants.
2) Continuing with the cake theme, my birthday was this past week, and we had a special dinner with our sons at Ocean Prime in midtown. I knew our older son would be there (he lives in NYC), but I was happily surprised to see our younger son from Boston sitting there with him when we arrived. It was such an enjoyable evening, and the guys even had these beautiful flowers waiting for me on the table. For dessert, they brought out two lovely little cakes- one chocolate and one carrot cake. It was a memorable birthday.
3) Another reason to love Dolly Parton is that she worked with Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams in Columbus, Ohio to create a new ice cream flavor- Strawberry Pretzel Pie. The cream cheese ice cream has strawberry sauce and pretzel streusel swirled through it. It sold out immediately, crashing Jeni's website. The best part (besides the heavenly sounding taste) is that proceeds from the sale go to Dolly's Imagination Library, a program that sends books each month to children from birth to age five. The program has gifted over 155 million books to children. I'm not sure any one person has done more for the cause of childhood literacy than Dolly Parton. Follow Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams social media for more information on the next release. I know I will.
4) We watched The United States Vs. Billie Holiday, starring singer Andra Day in her Golden Globe winning and Academy Award-nominated performance as Holiday. The movie tells the story of how in the 1940s, the FBI went after Holiday over her singing her powerful song, Strange Fruit, about the lynching of Black people. Day is astonishing in the role, and it reminded me of Bette Midler's amazing performance of a rock'n'roll singer (based on the life of Janis Joplin) in her Oscar nominated performance in The Rose. Holiday battled racism, drug and alcohol abuse, abusive relationships with men, and the FBI's constant harrassment. It is a performance not to be missed, the music is fantastic, and it's streaming on Hulu now.
5) I read two books this week. Wendy Francis' Summertime Guests is for those of us who love to people-watch. Set at an historic Boston waterfront hotel, when a woman falls (or did she jump or was she pushed?), the story of how that came to be is told by four different people- a young engaged couple, the hotel's general manager, a couple celebrating a birthday, and a middle-aged journalist whose last article has caused the mob to sue her newspaper. Who is the woman who fell? It's a mystery, and a good book to tuck in your bag when you head on vacation. My full review is here.
Patry Francis wrote a book years ago that has a place on my Favorites Shelf- The Orphans of Race Point. Her new novel, All the Children Are Home, tells the story of a couple who take in four foster children in the 1950s. The characters are unforgettable, including mom Dahlia, who is afraid to leave their home, hard-working husband Louie, older brother Jimmy who is protective of the younger children, Zaidie and her younger brother Jon who came to live with them when their mother died, and the youngest girl, Agnes, who suffered terrible abuse as a baby. How this family loves and supports each other in the face of disdain from neighbors and harassment from schoolmates is heartwarming, heartbreaking and hopeful. I read this book in one day and I will be recommending it to everyone. My review will follow soon.
Stay safe, socially distant, wash your hands, wear a mask and get a vaccine when it's your turn. (I did!) We'll soon be able to get back to some sense of normal if we all do our part.
This post was shared with Marg at The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader.