Thursday, April 30, 2009

Derby Weekend

It's Thursday and the official beginning of Derby Weekend for the B&B. Our guests won't arrive until midnight but their rooms are ready. Waiting in each room is a Derby tote bag, Derby glasses, a Derby pin, a one-pound box of Louisville Cookies, a bouquet of red roses and a stocked refrigerator.

We're looking forward to meeting everyone!

psst - we'll be making Mint Juleps for you all weekend.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

What's for breakfast 4.25.09?

This morning's guests chose from:

Banana pancakes
with homemade caramel sauce

and Sweet Corn Cakes

Hot Oatmeal
with brown sugar, dried fruit
and 12 grain toast

choice of juices

coffee, tea

Thursday, April 23, 2009

A new front yard

Several weeks ago we went to the Home, Garden and Remodeling Show. While there we looked at new countertops, outdoor lighting and talked with a landscaper. You see, our front yard was just overgrown. The plants had outgrown their original spaces, and not in a good way, some plants had died and been replaced over the years, and it just looked like a hodgepodge. I had wanted to do a particular type of landscape when we moved n twelve years ago and let the landscaper talk me out of it. Well, not this time. So we went to a display at the Show and I asked,

"Can you do an edible landscape?"

Seriously, the guy looked at me like I'd just beamed down from Mars.

What's crazy about an edible landscape? Didn't Michelle Obama just dig up 1100 square feet of White House lawn for a kitchen garden? My philosophy is if you're going to plant it and take care of it, you should be able to eat it.

So, not being able to find anyone to design this for us, we just decided to take matters into our own hands and design it ourselves. It's not quite done yet, but it's close. Some plants we kept, some we moved.

The front line, which once was shrubs, is now alternating red Double Knock Out Roses (OK, so you can't eat those) and currants. Around the statue birdbath is rhubarb, and to the side are three half high blueberries. Behind the metal sculpture is a semi-drawf Bartlett pear.

The dwarf red maple is from the original landscape plan and we love that tree. It took a little damage from the ice storm, but has recovered and looks to be fine. A red Double Knock Out rose is on the corner. If you aren't familiar with Knock Out roses, they are the roses that are planted in the right of way at a lot of Metro intersections. In other words, they don't require much attention and bloom like crazy. Here's a closeup.

So, now I think we're going to add some Rosemary. And I'm looking everywhere for a gooseberry bush. Every nursery center seems to be sold out for the season. If you find a couple, let me know. And I want big plants.

"Kitty TV"

So, we've always referred to the dining room window as the "Kitty TV."
"Why", you ask?

Well there are all sorts of interesting things to look at out there.

Here, a squirrel is enjoying some leftover toast from a Gallery House breakfast. (12 grain toast)

Carrot Cake Waffles

This is another new recipe for us here at Gallery House. We figured that nearly everyone likes carrot cake, and most people like waffles , so why not Carrot Cake Waffles? These were served with a side of vanilla poached pears and real maple syrup.

"Guest approved."

Bye Nat and Maxine

Nat and Maxine had a fabulous time visiting friends in Louisville. It was hard to keep up with all the places they were going. I remember that one day was a "bourbon tour" thru Bardstown - the Bourbon Capital of the World - with a stop at Heaven Hill, Jim Beam and lunch at the Old Talbot Tavern. They enjoyed Mayan Cafe for dinner, and Maxine even let everyone talk her into trying the lima beans. Seriously if you're ever in Louisville, have dinner at the Mayan Cafe and get the lima beans. Even if you don't like vegetables, get the lima beans. And if you don't like lima beans, be sure to get the lima beans. Trust me.

Soon Maxine will be the proud new owner of this umbrella. She saw mine, and had to order one. And would you believe it - two days before they were scheduled to leave town, a catalog comes in and that marvelous umbrella was on sale. "Meant to be!"

Nat and Maxine even attended the Taste of Derby Festival. And evening of food and (ahem) beverages from all of Louisville's best. Gallery House participated with our Louisville Cookies which were quite a hit! Taste of Derby Festival is a fundraiser for Dare to Care. You should attend next year! It's a great event for a great cause.

"It's a small world"

Every innkeeper experiences the "small world" phenomena frequently. When the Maesrk Alabama was hijacked by Somali pirates we had a guest staying with us who was in Louisville to present a class in international law. He also co-presents with another attorney who is an expert on maritime law. The breakfast discussion included a lively discussion on international waters, the law of the sea and the sorry state of Somalia's government.

A week or so later we hosted a couple from Germany who were in the States to visit their daughter. Other guests asked where they were heading next on their travels around the country. The Germans responded, '"To Savannah" and the other couple responded, "That's where we live!" All at a breakfast table in Louisville, KY.

Cue music - "It's a small world after all . . . it's a small world after all, it's a small, small world."

Thursday, April 9, 2009


We launched our new website a few minutes ago! It's the same url,, but it has a totally new look. Simpler to navigate, different pictures. We like it and hope you do too! And as always you can check the availability of a room and make a reservation right at the website. It's secure and easy. Go look!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Louisville Stoneware

If you're a keen observer you may have noticed that all the pictures of the breakfasts are on Louisville Stoneware plates. We have the Pear pattern which was originally called Harvest and is reportedly the oldest Louisville Stoneware pattern.

I won a service for 8, years and years ago in a cooking contest, and we've added to the set over time. Louisville Stoneware is handmade and hand painted - perfect for Gallery House! We do enjoy using these special dishes for our visitors to Louisville.

The Louisville stoneware factory is open for tours Monday thru Friday 10:30am and 1:30pm for $7 per person.

A family celebration

Several members of the Meeks family stayed with us while in Louisville to celebrate a QuinceaƱera! Congratulations senorita.

What's for breakfast 4.4.09?

Guests chose from:
Sweet corn cakes


Stuffed French Toast
with oranges and kiwi
and candied orange peel

Hot oatmeal
with brown sugar, almonds and dried fruit
with 12 grain toast

choice of juices

Coffee or Tea

Friday, April 3, 2009

A full house! What's for breakfast 4.3.09?

A full house last night meant early morning cooking for me. Fortunately I love to cook.

Gallery House guests' chose from the following menu this morning:

Spinach frittata
Smoky potatoes
12 grain toast


Pecan waffles with sliced bananas
and real maple syrup


Hot oatmeal
with brown sugar, dried fruit and milk
12 grain toast

choice of juices

Coffee or tea

Sunday, March 29, 2009

What's for breakfast 3.29.09?

Gallery House guests' chose from:

Governor's eggs
cinnamon apples

Lemon pancakes with blueberries
and blueberry syrup
(PS - we picked the blueberries ourselves!)

Hot oatmeal
with brown sugar, almonds and dried fruit

Choice of juices

coffee or tea

Friday, March 27, 2009

Pie. The hubby likes pie.

Gordon does love some pie. Pretty much any kind of pie.

He asked for Apple.

I felt like making Cherry Berry.

He didn't mind. :)

Cherry Berry Pie
1 pound bag of frozen sweet pitted cherries, thawed, juice reserved
1 pound bag of frozen mixed berries, thawed, juice reserved
In a saucepan combine:
3/4 cup sugar
reserved juice + enough water to equal 1 cup
3 Tablespoons cornstarch
Cook juice mixture until very thick. Combine with cherries and berries. Turn into prepared pie crust and top with top crust. Cut slits into top crust to let steam escape. Bake at 375 for 30-35 minutes.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

About those pineapple upside down pancakes

Pineapple Upside Down Pancakes were Gordon's idea. A month or so ago, he said "I like pineapple upside down cake, and I like pancakes. So you think you could figure out how to make pineapple upside down pancakes?"

hint, hint, wink, wink

So, for the next four mornings, I experimented and found out a number of things that didn't work. Like crushed pineapple. That doesn't work. But the end result is pretty yummy, if I do say so myself.

And in the words of our guests this morning, "Those pancakes were awesome!"

What's for breakfast 3.22.09?

Gallery House guests' chose from:

Pineapple Upside down pancakes
with pineapple syrup

Spinach and Parmesan cheese frittatas
smoky potatoes

Hot oatmeal
with brown sugar, almonds and dried fruit

choice of juices

coffee or tea

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A family 'meet up'

Barbara, Charles and Lesley checked in a couple of days ago. There was a need to exchange vehicles, but I think the family also enjoyed seeing Louisville and spending time together. They stayed busy! They visited the Louisville Slugger Museum, Glassworks, the J.B. Speed Art Museum and the Frazier International History Museum. Whew!

Barbara and I also shared some stories that involved attempted thefts and the "voice of God." Actually the voice telling the person not to steal the items came from above (a second story window in Barbara's story and a balcony in my story) and confused the thief (in a good way) so that the goods were not stolen! Come on over and I'll tell you the story.

Barbara, Charles and Lesley chose four really good things to do in Louisville.

The Louisville Slugger is the Official Bat of Major League Baseball. That's quite a statement. You'll tour both the museum and the factory, watch bats being born and at the end of the tour you get the coveted mini-souvenier Louisville Slugger bat. And in case you're wondering, the big bat is 120 ft. long and 9 ft. diameter at the base; 3 ft. 6 in. diameter at the handle with a 6 ft. 6 in. diameter knob.

Glassworks is dedicated to the art of glass; its magic, its mystery and its beauty. It offerss three working glass studios, two glass galleries, a walk-in workshop, daily tours and more. Don't forget to visit the Gift Shop!

The J.B. Speed Art Museum is Kentucky's oldest and largest art museum with over 13,000 pieces in its permanent collection, spanning 6,000 years of history. Be sure to visit the Kentucky Room to see works by native artists. Did you know that Gordon's a professor of art history? He spends a fair amount of time at the Speed, and organizes field trips there for his students.

The Frazier International History Museum presents 1,000 years of history in a100,000 square-foot, state-of-the-art museum encompassing three floors. At Frazier you can relive historical events that challenged our ancestors. You'll meet heroes, generals, and famous leaders of America and the world whose military victories –- and defeats –- changed history.

What's for breakfast 3.20.09?

Gallery House guests' may choose from:

Artichoke and potato frittatas
Orange yogurt parfait
12 grain toast

Chocolate waffles
with sliced strawberries
and strawberry syrup

Hot oatmeal
with brown sugar, almonds and dried fruit

choice of juices

coffee or tea

KY Derby 2009

The Kentucky Derby is always the first Saturday in May. This year, it's on May 2. You don't want to miss the "Fastest two minutes in sports"!

Louisville parties for two weeks prior to the Run for the Roses, with all sorts of races- rats, people, steamboats, balloons, servers carrying trays of wine glasses, beds and oh yes horses. In addition to the races, there'll be golf and volleyball tournaments, an academic challenge, a parade and of course the Chow Wagon. For a complete listing of events, click here.

You'll need a $5 Pegasus Pin for admission to most events and these can be purchased nearly everywhere in Louisville!

The Opening Ceremony of Derby Festival is Thunder over Louisville. If you haven't experienced it, you need to. It's the largest annual fireworks show in the country. It's quite spectacular.

Here at Gallery House, we're gearing up for Derby. We're helping guests with restaurant reservations (you should have your reservations by now), and ordering the souvenirs that our guests will find waiting in their rooms.We do our best to make sure that each guest has a memory-making Derby experience. We'll be making Mint Juleps in the evenings with fresh mint from our garden, serving a champagne breakfast on Derby day and packing a lunch for our guests to take to Churchill Downs on Derby Day. Every year we hear how our guests with their gourmet lunches were the envy of all those around them. :)

Gallery House still has one guest room available for Derby weekend, so if you're looking for accommodations, we're here!

What's for breakfast 3.19.09?

This morning's menu includes guests' choice of:

Migas with salsa fresca
Sweet corn cakes


Homemade pancakes
Cinnamon Apples
with real maple syrup


Hot oatmeal
Brown sugar, almonds and dried fruit

choice of orange, grape or apple juice

Coffee or tea

Bon Voyage Rebecca and Peter

Rebecca and Peter stayed with us for several weeks while getting their paperwork sorted out for a move to Jordan. Originally when they began their stay with us here at Gallery House, they thought they were headed to Saudia Arabia. You see, they're both English teachers (TOEFL) and have lived and worked all over the world. They reared their family in Argentina and most recently were employed in VietNam.

While here in Louisville, they were able to visit with Rebecca's family, then after a brief visit to Peter's family they start their new jobs in Jordan. By the time you read this they will be there! We had many interesting discussions on the merits of the American healthcare system compared to healthcare around the world, politics, the arts (Peter is a violinist) and of course cats. Our princess kitty Maggie was quite enamoured with Rebecca and Peter and Marlow was usually more than happy to entertain them by pouncing on various toys.

Gordon and I wish them a safe trip to their new home and know that Peter in particular will enjoy the warmer weather!

Gordon and I thank you again for the gift of the handcrafted wooden deer made by Rebecca's father. It's sitting on our mantel right now. And, really, he should open an etsy shop!

This is one of the best things about being an innkeeper - meeting people from all over the world!