Spring Fling

Newton Happenings – Music and Art and Literature

Newton Happenings – Music and Art and Literature

Without going out on a limb here, I think it’s safe to say we are all looking for signs of Spring. Haven’t seen crocuses in your garden yet? That’s okay – here are some events to bring on the Spring.

Spring into Swing

Spring into Swing

What: A community Jazz Concert and Reception to benefit Newton Public Schools Creative Arts & Sciences Programming – featuring Semenya McCord and her 6-piece jazz ensemble.

When: Friday, April 10, 7 -10 PM

Where: Newton South High School, 140 Brandeis Rd., Newton Centre, 02459.

Tickets: $35/person at http://www.newton.k12.ma.us/CASC

Ticket price includes light fare and open bar.  No one under 21 will be admitted. Proceeds from the event will benefit enrichment programming during the 2015-16 school year.

Creative Arts & Sciences began bringing enrichment program into the classroom in 1960. Fifty-five years later it continues to be is a part of every grade and middle school PTO and a vital part of Newton students’ education experience. Please attend! Please support Creative Arts & Sciences!



Newton Open Studios

2015 Spring Open Studios
Coming THIS WEEKEND: April 11-12,

Saturday & Sunday 11am to 5pm

Join the fun! Browse, explore, and buy art and beautifully crafted objects directly from over 150 local artists.

You’ll see painting, jewelry, photography, ceramics, sculpture, prints, wearable fabrics and much more.

NOS is one of the largest and longest running open studios events in the region! 50 pop-up exhibit/sales locations all across Newton have plenty of free parking, and many have handicap access. Red balloons mark the locations.

 One of my favorite places to get great food is L’Aroma Cafe and they are also one of the locations for Newton Open Studios. Bonus! I’ll take a soy latte and a spin around the upstairs where the following artists will have tables set up.
Upstairs at L’Aroma
15 Spencer St
West Newton

Inge Downing
Handmade Cosmetic
Bags and Pillows

Larry Grob
Pastel Landscapes/
Studio & Plein Air

Hog Wild Pottery
“Farm to Table” Pottery

Rebekah Lord
Painting, Books and
Works on Paper

Andrea Newman
Handmade Upcycled
Jewelry and Collage

Sharon Schindler
Fine Art Photography

Spring Fling

The always wonderful Newton Free Library Spring Fling on Saturday, April 11th featuring Barney Frank and Atul Gawande. A sure sign that Spring is around the corner.

Spring Fling 2015




Not your mother’s casserole – wild rice, chicken and mushrooms.

california wild rice -photo from california wild rice websiteThis is the wonderful chicken and rice dish that our hostess made for the Spring Fling lunch. The original recipe calls for leftover turkey and I am definitely keeping it on file for Thanksgiving leftovers.

I am making this today and will put up the recipe now. I will let you know if it came out as well as the original!

Many thanks, lovely hostess!

Wild Rice Casserole – (Chicken) Leftover Turkey

Feed 16 easily – we are having 8 people for dinner so I can easily cut this recipe in half.


  • 2 cups wild rice
  • 2 lbs. sliced mushrooms
  • 4 cups of sliced onions
  • 1/2 cup of butter
  • 4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground pepper
  • 6 cups cooked chicken (your choice of parts)
  • 1 cup sliced almonds (if any nut allergies, just leave this out)
  • 6 cans chicken broth (I use boxed broth – I think three are comparable to 6 cans – will confirm)
  • 2 1/2 cups heavy cream

Wash rice thoroughly and cover with water, bring to a boil and remove from heat and let soak for 1 hour. Drain. (I did this last night and put the rice in a covered container)

Saute mushrooms and onions in 1/2 cup of butter until brown. Add the chicken, almonds and broth (not all, save out a can) and cream. Mix lightly and turn into two 2-quart casserole dishes.

Dot each casserole with 2 tablespoons of butter and bake at 350 degrees for one hour. (You can use one larger dish but this will add to the cooking time).

You can freeze these to be cooked later, chill the casseroles in the fridge, then wrap, seal and  freeze. When ready to cook, place covered casseroles – unthawed – in a 300 degree oven and bake for 20-30 minutes. Take off foil and raise the heat to 350 degrees (now dot with the 2 TB. of butter) and bake for 1 hour more.


Return to work? School? Stay home? I want it all.

I have always loved libraries, the peace, the enforced quiet (sometimes I need to be forced to be quiet), and the books – so many books!  There is an application for Simmons college for an MLS degree in my inbox – it has been there awhile now and I almost don’t notice it anymore but I still think about it. 

I  get my library fix in a few ways these days, aside from just using it as the amazing resource that it is, I also volunteer for the Spring Fling, a wonderful annual fundraiser for the Newton Free Library (Tom Ashbrook of NPR as host)  for the Friends of the Newton Free Library (book and author lunch, book sales) and at my children’s schools (I do need that Stop Me Before I Volunteer Again button).  All of these groups are filled with lovely and intelligent women who are kind, supportive, level-headed and generous with their time and energy.  It is a pleasure to spend time with them.  There is a great (almost endless) supply of energy among these women. Whether it is a book sale, an author’s evening,  a school-wide fundraiser or Understanding Our Differences program, the dedication and talent of these women is remarkable.

That said, I am on the precipice of wanting to – gasp – Return To Work.  I know my skills are rusty or possibly non-existent, I know it is a horrible job market and I do value my time with my children at home (and volunteering) and still want to do that, too.  I also want to be paid.  I am glad that I have been home with my children and wouldn’t have missed it for the world (this is in no way a  judgement of moms who work outside of the home, it is just what worked for us).  But I still dream of those mother’s hours (10 am to 2 pm) and a fulfilling and financially rewarding career. Dreaming?  Unrealistic? How do you balance your life?  Let me know in the comment section.

Here are links to the Spring Fling, Friends and UOD




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