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Showing posts from January, 2010

Where Romance Is

Where is the most romantic destination you have visited? I've come across this question several times during the last few days, both in print and online. Some publishers say that if I write about it in a minimum number of words (usually between 100 and 200) or less and it gets published, then they would send me money. Easy, right? Writing about something in so many words is no problem. I may ramble, but I can edit unmercifully when necessary. But coming up with a romantic place, which I assume also means with my honey, well that's a bit more difficult. Sure, there was that bed-and-breakfast on the Kona Coast, where a guy named "Dude" answered when I called about reservations, which made me wonder if we really should stay there. The same place where I lost the husband on the highway that first night. We were driving back from dinner. It was so dark, we couldn't find the B&B's driveway. After several passes up and down the highway, the husband got out of the

A Sky Full of Moon

Tomorrow will be a full moon. According to some experts, this full moon will be the closest one to earth in 2010, which means that it shall be the largest. I was fortunate tonight in closing the blinds as the moon was rising over our neighbors' rooftops. Otherwise I wouldn't have gone outside running with the camera. The cosmos gives the best cheapest thrills around. By the way, the astronomy experts report that tonight the moon and Mars will be dancing brightly near each other. (Too bad it started to rain.) For more about the celestial pair, check out this page at Universe Today: "Weekend SkyWatcher's Forecast: January 29-31, 2010" by Tammy Plotner.

Saving Cents

This morning's frenzy was all about finding e-coupons for our weekly grocery outing. As far as I'm concerned 25 cents off something is 25 cents saved. Right? Until recently, I had been an inconsistent coupon user. Most times, I tore them out of newspapers and magazines and then forgot to bring them along or forgot what pile of papers they're under. Now I put coupons in a basket and check it before heading off to the store. Most times. Every so often the husband asks if I have a coupon for such-and-such product and I happily seek out the basket. I call that progress. Today, I decided to go online and find e-coupons for the products we buy on a regular basis. (Something I should've thought of much earlier.) I thought it would be easy to do. Ha, ha. What was I thinking? I was very specific in my keyword searches: entering "coupon" plus the brand of the product, such as coupons Special K .  I was surprised that not all company web sites blatantly offer e-coupons.

A Cooking Mishmosh Frenzy

I got out of bed this morning with an ambitious goal: Cook two—hopefully, three—days worth of meals. I enjoy cooking, but not all the time. Before the husband and I moved in with the mama (my mom), when I didn't want to cook, we went out. Unfortunately, the mama doesn't like eating out, although she's okay with us getting take-out. It's just as well since the restaurant choices in our town are limited. And, of course, we aren't made of money. I do my best to make nutritious, balanced meals that meet the taste preferences and dietary needs of us three. The husband limits his salt intake because of his high-blood pressure, the mama needs foods on the not-so-chewy side, and I keep tabs of foods that make me itch. The mama is also very particular. If she doesn't like something, she eats a few bites, shoves the plate aside, and says, "I'll eat this tonight (or tomorrow)." Then several days later, I throw it out or eat it on leftovers day. Another chall

Taking Off for the Present

For our Christmas present, the husband and I decided that we would take at least one day off each month in 2010. That is, go on an adventure! Because we are so good at letting things slide, we designated the 23rd of every month to be The Day . As January 23 approached, I did wonder if the husband would remember. And when he did, I wondered if we would actually do it. It's not that we don't like adventures. It's just all that pre-planning stuff: What shall we do? Where shall we go? If it rains, what then? and so forth and so on. Neither of us felt like doing the research, and neither did. The night before, we thought about the last place we wanted to check out and that's where we chose to go— Marina State Beach on the Monterey peninsula. We woke up to a bright sunny morning. Couldn't ask for anything more after a week of rain. Well, OK. Doughnuts and coffee for breakfast and lunch at a Korean restaurant. Yum. No straight routes for us that day. If we had, we would&

Still Waiting for that Martini

We bought a bottle of martini olives   so we could celebrate the coming of 2010 in the comfort and safety of our home. I make a decent gin martini, according to the husband. However, he's still waiting for that Happy New Year martini. This is the second bottle of olives that we bought in the past six months with good intentions of drinking ourselves silly. Who wouldn't with such cute martini glasses from which to sip. (Ha! No dangling prepositions by which to chide me, Husband.)  So, what are we doing with the martini olives? Mostly, I use it as an ingredient in what's-in-the-fridge concoctions. Because they're salty, I usually use one or two. Today the olives became part of a steak marinade. Here's what I did: First, I prepared and put these ingredients in my marinating bowl: 1 tablespoon red onion, diced 3 garlic cloves, minced 1 martini olive, minced 3 branches of Italian parsley, roughly chopped Next, I added these ingredients (Note: These are all "about&qu

Twelve Days Later

Dear Gentle Readers, I thought I'd let you gander at how my head looks today. :-) I really didn't think it would grow in this quickly. Here's how it looked the first day . It's funny how my head feels lighter today than it did on the day I cut it. Without the hair, maybe stuff in my noggin was able to seep through the skull and evaporate into the air. Poof. Hope it wasn't any of my smarts.

With Rain Comes. . .

Rainbows! All I had to do was look out my window, too. Gotta love that. The weathercasters say we'll be seeing rain in our area all week. I hope so.

Claytonia Perfoliata

Miner's lettuce! The husband and I found a patch of it growing in my neighborhood. What the heck is it doing here? It was just growing out in the open between a fence and the public sidewalk. No cover of trees, bushes, or anything, which to us was weird because we thought the wild plant can only grow in the shade. We also think of it growing out in the wilds. I was not really curious about it until today. So, gentle readers, here's what I learned: Miner's Lettuce is part of the purslane family. No kidding. It grows throughout the United States. Some folks also know the edible plant as Winter Purslane , Spring Beauty, or Indian lettuce. Claytonia perfoliata for those who like knowing scientific nomenclature. Claytonia perfoliata . That would make a great title for an Italian opera. Supposedly, the plant got called Miner's Lettuce in California because the gold rush miners ate the green to stave off scurvy . According to various sources on the Web, Miner's L

Cloth Napkins

I’ve been talking to the husband and the mama about changing to cloth napkins for almost two years. (Time flies quickly when you’re old. That is, older.) The husband and the mama had no objections. Cloth napkins are more economical than paper ones, as well as more than one tree would be saved. But any moves of finding and purchasing cloth napkins were going to come from me. My research was sporadic and disheartening. There weren’t, and probably still aren’t, many places to buy cloth napkins, nor were there a variety of choices of napkins. And I am very particular about shelling out money, between $4 and $5 per napkin, for something I could easily make, if I had the time. As for the mama, who is even cheaper than me, I imagined her hiding a paper napkin amongst the expensive cloth one and pulling it out to wipe her mouth when I wasn’t looking. A couple months ago, I finally did walk my talk. It was fun and a hoot putting my foot to the metal of my mom’s Singer treadle sewing machine

Homemade ASAP Tomato Soup

12:59 p.m. Drats ! Lunch time! I meant to start making lunch half-an-hour ago. 1 p.m. Race down the stairs, into the garage, and pull out a bag of frozen organic tomatoes from the freezer. Rinse the tomatoes, then thaw them in the microwave, on high, for 8 minutes. Next, wash and thinly slice 3 stalks of celery. Dice 1 white onion. Sauté ingredients until soft in a combination of olive oil and not-butter. 1:07 p.m. Run upstairs to fetch camera. Take picture of tomatoes in microwave. 1:09 p.m. Dump tomatoes into pot. Stir. Take a photo. Cover pot. 1:11 p.m. Finish cleaning and chopping half a bulb of garlic (10 large cloves in this case). Add to pot. With back of spoon, smash down tomatoes. Add in several mean shakes of black pepper straight from tin and 2 healthy pinches (probably 1 heaping tsp. each) of dried basil. When it comes to spices and herbs, I'm not subtle. Because the hubby must restrict his salt intake, I rarely add salt to the stuff I make. 1:14 p.m.: Carefully pluck


One of my latest projects is divesting myself of stuff. See the photo of the snake pen. It’s inkless. Shall I: a) throw it away? b) toss it into one of my boxes of mementos, which I’ll open another day to decide whether I’m ready to dump what’s inside? c) keep it forever and let my executor dump it after I’m dead? I bought this pen years ago when I was going through a period of “Ooh, how cute. I’m a snake, I must have it.” Fortunately, that was a short phase and I have only a meager collection of stuffed snakes, snake figurines, and picture books featuring talking snakes. No doubt, unknown readers, you understand my snake reference, one of the 12 signs in Chinese astrology. According to the Chinese web site , “…When it comes to decision-making, Snakes are extremely analytical and as a result, they don’t jump into situations....” Yep. This snake pen has been lying on my desk for several days, ever since I went through my cup of pens and threw away the inkless ones. But un

Letting Our Minds Wander

So, do you see Bart Simpson in that tree? How about a person in pants standing as he or she scratches his or her head? Perhaps, you see the back side of a deer's head as it gazes at the building. Or, do you see a mess of leaves that you're happy you won't be sweeping? That's imagining, too. (Click on the photo for a larger image.)

Wanna Do It?

It started by me asking the husband at the dinner table last night, “What’s the longest that your hair has ever grown?” “About halfway down my back,” he answered. “Me, too.” I said. “I could reach behind at my waist and touch it with my fingertips.” “Me, too.” “Have you ever gone bald?” I asked. “No,” the husband replied. “Me, neither.” “I’ ve thought about it.” “Me, too.” The question popped out of my mouth, “Wanna do it?” “Do you?” “How long do you think our hair can grow in one year?” “Dunno.” Throughout last night and this morning, we asked each other, “Wanna do it?” "Shall we?" "What do you think?" "No haircuts for a year?" When we went out this morning to shop for groceries, that’s all we planned to do. Really. Then we saw the hair salon next to the market. And, yeah, we did it. The Shorn Husband. . . and The Shorn Wife

La la la...blogging.

I've been thinking, wanting, and needing (yes, needing) to begin a new blog for several months, since the hubby and I finished our last writing project. I have been lagging in some tasks, such as updating my web site, because I was awaiting the start of this here blog. What has kept me from beginning is my vacillation about choosing the right title and the right look. That can also be another way of saying I’m simply mentally tuckered out from words. But, that’s if I was being myself. After all, the title did pop out of my cobwebby mind a couple months ago while gathering chestnuts. Really, I was. Gathering chestnuts that is, but that will be a tale for another day. So, here I am, a 56-year-old woman. There's nothing like blogging about this and that and about here and there to find my voice and rhythm. Again. Thanks for visiting. Please stop by often.