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Showing posts from September, 2015

Cows Outstanding in Pumpkins

I didn't know cows ate pumpkins. I wonder if they might like pumpkin pie.

Moooooooooooo. 


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Finding Order in Chaos

Yesterday afternoon, procrastinating me started thinking about my flower arrangement entries for the fair, which are due on Wednesday afternoon.

I opened one of the kitchen cupboards and staring boldly at me, obviously begging to be in the fair, was an Eiffel Tower martini glass.  "I'm for the A Touch of Glass dry floral arrangement," it proclaimed. 

"Okay," I said. "Let's go." We went to the office where I set the Eiffel Tower martini glass on the drawing board, into which the poor Husband keeps bumping as he goes in and out of the office.

Before I knew it, the dried green moss called out from its basket on the floor, "Hey! Hey!"

Bammm! A handful of moss planted itself in the glass, draping itself whatever way it wanted.

The tiny blue straw flowers I bought the other day made a noise, "Me! Me! Me!"

Bammmm! The tiny flowers stood proudly in the moss.

"Yoooo-hoooo!" The fake pearls waved from its box. "Eiffel …

Day 73 with Tilda-Hilda

Hurrah, I went beyond the neighborhood today. Tilda-Hilda and I pedaled 3.33 miles in about 18 minutes. Going up slight inclines was a challenge, but, oh so good for me. 

We stopped at Sunnyslope School for a picture. That's where I went to 4th and 5th grade. The door on the right was my 4th grade classroom, where I suddenly went from being one of the tallest kids to one of the shortest ones.

The door on the corner opened to my 5th grade classroom. I loved going into that door. So much imagination went on in there for me. I was introduced to writing make-believe stories and buying my own books through the monthly Scholastic book club. Mrs. Patterson, our teacher, calmed us down from lunch break by reading to us. Freckles, The Girl from the Limberlost, Anne of Green Gables, and The Secret Garden were the ones I recall. My world opened up in 5th grade.


Days 61 to 72 with Tilda-Hilda

I have no photo of Tilda-Hilda and me, but I give you one of me pretending to race on a bike rack in Half Moon Bay. The Husband took it on our day out celebrating our 19th wedding anniversary, which I wrote about yesterday.

Tilda-Hilda and I are still pedaling about, mostly around the neighborhood. Sometimes once a day, sometimes twice. We go as fast as we can, always stopping at the Godmother Pat's house. Remember, she had a horrible work accident in which the tips of her thumb and middle finger blew off. After nearly three months, she's doing as well as can be. She and the Mama come from one amazing generation of stalwart women.

I'm ready to go further distances with Tilda-Hilda. The Husband and I drive down country roads and I see Tilda-Hilda and my spirits pedaling on the shoulders. Maybe once the high temperatures give way to regular autumnal weather, we'll be out there again.

A Special Wandering

September 23 was the first day of Autumn. It was also the Husband's and my 19th wedding anniversary. And, yes, it doesn't seem like it was that long ago we turned right at the xerox machine to get married. (For that story, head over here, if you like.)

Our day began with breakfast at our favorite coffee shop in San Juan Bautista—Vertigo Coffee. That's one of the few places I'll allow myself to drink coffee. The Husband had himself a mocha latte, which is an occasion in itself. Until yesterday, he hadn't drunk coffee in over two years.


We also ate BLT with soft scrambled egg panini sandwiches. Yummm! Using coffee stirrers as chopsticks to pick up the eggs that kept falling out of our sandwiches made the meal even more fun and special.


We drove over to the coast and headed north on Highway One. Roadwork was going on, but that didn't bother us. We were after all in no big hurry to get anywhere. We saw a lot of pampas grass growing alongside the road and hills. D…

Signs of Half Moon Bay

Okay, I have 3 minutes to post something for today. Two minutes now. One minute.


Okay. I cheated. I published this post, and have now come back to write more. Simply had to make sure I didn't miss my daily post.

Oh, these are signs that I saw in Half Moon Bay, about 25 miles south of San Francisco, which I'll write a bit more about in tomorrow's post.


Random Scenes: The Train to Florence

Minutes before three o'clock in the morning, I ran along the train platform towards an open door. My host ran beside me. "Have fun," he said. "Come back with no money."

I hoisted myself up the train steps.  "Boungiorno," I said to the waiting conductor, then turned and thanked my host. "I'll see you tonight."

"I'll be here." he said. "Don't worry about a thing."

The train to Firenze started. I began my unsteady walk through the darkly lit train in search of a place to sit. For the first time in many years, I was alone traveling in an unfamiliar place.

Experimenting with My Diet

You know how sometimes you wake up one morning and you decide to be good about what you eat. That was this morning for me. I haven't analyzed the why-fors. Maybe I won't. I just went with the mood. Not that we have a lot of junk food in our refrigerator and pantry. The "worse" is a half bag of potato chips and a bunch of blueberry cheese pastry bits. The latter is the Mama's, which the Husband and I help consume, otherwise they go stale.

This morning, I chose to forgo my usual breakfast selections -- peanut butter and jam sandwich or peanut butter, apple, and raisins rice bowl. Peanut butter, processed grains, and food loaded with sugar could be contributing culprits for my eczema flare ups. Hence, none of those foods for awhile.

What did I eat for breakfast then? I made a salad out of organic baby spring lettuces, leftover roasted sweet potato rounds, and a handful of almonds that I topped with balsamic vinegar. Someone told me that the sweet potato satisfies th…

Molly the "Cheshire" Cat

“Alice asked the Cheshire Cat, who was sitting in a tree, “What road do I take?”

The cat asked, “Where do you want to go?”

“I don’t know,” Alice answered.

“Then,” said the cat, “it really doesn’t matter, does it?” 


~ Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Pretty in Pink

The Mama loved to sew dresses for me in pink when I was in elementary school. I didn't care too much for the color, but because I wasn't interested in looking at fabric back then, she bought what she liked. Long story short, once I got to a point where I began choosing materials or ready-made clothes, I avoided pink.

Then somewhere in my late 40s, I thought the color pink is fresh. It's bold. It's got pizazz. It's joyful. It's happy. Again, long story short, I think I'll put some pink in the tunic I am going to sew soon.


Putting Things in Perspective

Lately, I find myself whispering, "I'm an old person."

I snicker. I chuckle. I laugh out loud.

I shake my head. Am I not dreaming?

I shake my head. I am in awe that I'm actually old.

I shrug it off. I put it in perspective. The Mama is over 30 years older than me.

And, you know where she is right now. Playing in her garden.



Rancho del Oso

A couple months ago I had a hankering to be by the ocean and the Husband wanted to be in a forest, so we drove to Rancho del Oso, the western portion of Big Basin Redwoods State Park in Santa Cruz County.  The entry point is across from Waddell Beach on State Highway 1, where you can see surfers and kiteboarders having fun.


It was our first time to visit Rancho del Oso, which translates to Bear Ranch. Once upon a time, the Grizzly Bear roamed the area. Thankfully, we did not meet any bears, but we did come across jack rabbits, squirrels, butterflies, lizards, and an occasional human.


We hiked over a couple of miles, the first half going up and along a mountain side and the trip back on a nice flat fire road. Unfortunately, my left knee flamed up on the way back, so it took us longer to get back to the car. On a positive note: We got to enjoy being under the redwoods longer.






It's the letter R at Alphabe Thursday, the weekly ABC meme hosted by the lovely Jenny Matlock. To read oth…

Waiting to the Last Moment

"I seem to be doing everything at the last moment," I said to the Husband, while we stood in line at the post office. I was sending a gift for a baby shower happening on Saturday.

"Why is that?" he asked.

I shrugged. "I don't know. I'll probably die at the last moment."

"They'll ask you 'What happened?'" said the Husband. "'You should've been here last week.'"

What can I say? That's life.


Haute Hippie Couture

I walked into a woman's boutique shop in Santa Cruz to check out a very cute East-Indian style top that I saw in its window. It was similar to ones I wore when I was a very young thing. I thought if the cost was right it was going home with me. I was even willing to pay $45 for it, although I thought it was worth $20 bucks.

I have no sense of how much clothing are worth these days. Twenty bucks was how much I paid for eccentric stuff, which the the parents called hippie clothes, at import shops when I was a very young thing.

The East-Indian tops of yore were made of a thin cotton. This modern version was made of a smooth, rich-feeling fabric that turned out to be rayon. Not being silk, I figured the top would be very affordable.

Then I finally found the price tag.

One hundred ninety-eight dollars!

Shall I say that again: $198.00!!

Seriously.

When I got home, I looked up the designer online. Maybe I'd find the top for cheaper.

Ha!

$218.00!!!

I saw several other tops on t…

Peppers & Persimmons

Sounds like a nice title for something -- Peppers & Persimmons. Or, perhaps, Persimmons & Peppers. Maybe without the ampersand, and italicized: Peppers and Persimmons;or, Persimmons and Peppers.

The pepper plants have been kind to us this year. Three of four fruits every couple of weeks.

The persimmons are slowly ripening on the tree. We're going to have an extra good crop this year. 

See you tomorrow.

Success!

Hurrah!

The Husband and I found a market yesterday in Santa Cruz that sells beef liver and beef soup bones that I can trust. The Mama has been wanting soup-bone soup lately, too.

We bought three half-pound frozen containers of liver. Two containers went into the freezer, while the liver in third one was cooked with onions, garlic powder, salt, and soy sauce for the Mama's and my dinner last night. The Husband does not eat liver, no matter how much I tell him I cook so he'd think it was steak. He won't bite. So, he got leftover Chinese food to eat.

This morning, I asked the Mama if she liked the liver. "Yes," she said. "I feel stronger." 

Yay!

Cat Food, Liver, and Beads

Molly the Cat is about to run out of food. That means we need to drive over to the coast today. Yay! It'll be a bit cooler. We've had two days of 100+ temperatures. Today is supposed to be the same. The weather guys say we may have a thunderstorm this weekend, possibly without the rain.

Since we're over there, we'll also go on a quest for grass-fed beef liver for the Mama. Her doctor has been monitoring her blood count for the last few months. Yesterday, he finally got worried and has referred her to a blood specialist, which got Mama wanting to eat liver. She's willing to eat beef liver from any market. Not anymore for me.

If we have time, I would like to stop at a Goodwill or another thrift shop to check out old, funky jewelry. I haven't found the beads I want for my county-fair bracelet entry. What kind of beads, the Husband asks? I shall know when I see them.

Off we go!

A Quiet, Quaint, and Quirky Place

San Juan Bautista, with an estimated population of 1,800, looks like your ordinary, move-along-nothing-to-see very small city. At least, from the highway that runs along it. Wrong! Lots to see and lots to do if you're into California history, California missions, antiques, thrift-shopping, art galleries, walking, eating, coffee, Hitchock's Vertigo, bicycling, architecture, organic farms, wine tasting, and simply zenning out at any of the patios of the various eating and drinking establishments. Oh, and earthquakes, as in the San Andreas Fault.


I find it hard to believe more people haven't discovered this quiet, quaint, and quirky friendly town. We live about 10 miles to the east in Hollister. I've know San Juan Bautista my whole life, but it's only in the last decade that I have come to appreciate the mission city, which some people call it because of Mission San Juan Bautista, one of the 21 California missions that the Franciscan missionaries established long ago…