Tuesday, November 11, 2014

It's that time of the year AGAIN!!

The title of the blog is referring to CHRISTMAS!!

Yes I know Thanksgiving is not here yet.  But is y'all look at the calendar you may be surprised to notice that the Christmas season is quite short this year.  The dreaded "Black Friday" is November the 28th.  Do the math folks, y'all got a lot of work to do before the company shows up.

 I say all of this for a reason......................my dear husband and I have managed a Christmas tree lot in Southern California.  We have done this for the past 7 years.  And in spite of the very hard work managing a Christmas Tree lot entails we love doing this.  

So suffice to say we won't be around much here on this blog.  I might post some photos if time permits.

So time to get ready, find all the decorations then wait for the trees to be delivered.

Oh I forgot to mention............we are going to be in Agoura  Hills this year

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Family.............it's what it's all about!!

So family came to visit.  Had an absolutely wonderful time.  Of course there was food involved.  There always is food discussion and enjoying  when we get together.  More about that later.

We did a bit of wine tasting.  We are in the beautiful Santa Ynez Valley of some pretty spectacular grapes.  More about that later.

We did a bit of sightseeing.  The La Purisama Mission is just a short drive down the road from us.  Family enjoys history and some photo taking  so it was a perfect morning venue.

A couple a senior citizen donkeys

Beautiful old structure
love the bells.................top bell is wooden
I promised a flower and these are a favorite

Friday, April 25, 2014

When the temps reach 101*

Ya pack up and get outta town.  And that is exactly what we are going to do.  Woot!!  Woot!!

We absolutely love being in Southern Arizona.  However  once the temps reach 95*, ya step out the door and it feels like Mother Nature left the oven on it is time to move on.  This is our home for a few months during the winter.  We will miss the fine folks here but we shall return.

But where we are spending the summer is an area to die for REALLY!!  When I tell you I know y'all will be jealous.   OK picture the Santa Ynez Valley and one of those beautiful communities is a town called Buellton. 
See you are just green with envy.  I know I would be.  Take a minute and read about the area.  What's not to like 12 wineries, one gaming casino, a ton of farmers markets and a Trader Joe's reasonable close as well as an In-N-Out.
See I knew you would be sporting a bit of envy.

We shall enjoy our summer  and like I always say

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Mother's Day

Do you celebrate.  Or do you maybe honor a Mother that has passed.  We do the honor thing because both of our Mothers have passed.  I always enjoyed Mother's Day because we would sometimes venture out for a big meal at a fancy restaurant.  And on the drive to our destination I would remember all the flowers that had popped up along the way.  And then arrival at the restaurant the flowers were always in abundance on the tables.  So Mother's 
Day is a fond memory of spending time with my Momma and a reminder that it's spring.  

We always got our Momma something special for Mother's Day but I know her fondness for cards.  She loved getting cards from her girls.

I found a great shop on Etsy by a terrific artist. She makes the sweetest cards.  Go take a look  here

Now maybe you might find that smell good stuff suits your Mothers taste.
Check out this shop here  or here  or here.

I am not a Mom but boy I would enjoy any or all of the above.    

 If I run across any more ideas I'll be happy to share.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Something tasty for you

I don't often put recipes on this blog.  Sister, niece and I have a food blog.  Or actually had a food blog as our lives have become so busy food blogging is not at the top of our list.

Having said that I am posting one of the most delicious crust less quiches I have ever made and or eaten.

This is how it started with this recipe I found while poking around.  That's how I find all these marvelous recipes.  It's almost like an adventure.  And like some adventures you can make a wrong turn.  But not with this recipe.  Find it here

Give a huge shout out to Beth over at Budget Bytes for this recipe.  First time I made this I made it exactly like her recipe.  This week, now that asparagus is everywhere you look I thought hmmmmm.  And I'll add some mushrooms.  I'll use cheddar and jack cheese.  And a small amount of cream cheese.  Here's my method.  And I'll tell you right now this was so good husband said "can we have this again soon".

First of all I used a small, non-stick quiche pan that I liberally sprayed with cooking oil.

  • Sauteed  a package of mushrooms until they were nicely browned and just toward the end I add a small pat of butter.
  • Asparagus up next.  I think I used about a dozen spears.  Trimmed the ends and cut into one inch pieces. Saute till almost cooked as the aspargus will continue cooking in the egg mixture
  • Next up the eggs.  I used four eggs I wisked untill well mixed with 3/4 cup of  whole milk.  I also added a few splashes of Frank's Hot Sauce just to give it an extra kick.  
  • Three quarter cup of shredded cheese of your choice.  With this mixture I used extra sharp cheddar and jack.
  • Now assemble.  Spread the mushrooms on the bottom of your dish.  On top of that put the asparagus.  Next put a few spoonfuls of cream cheese just a few dollops here and there.  Don't worry it will melt into the egg mixture.  
  • Combine the cheeses you are using with the egg mixture.  Then gently pour that on top of the veggies.  Make sure the shredded cheese is spread evenly.
  • Place the pan on a cookie sheet and put in a 375* oven after fifteen minutes turn down to 350* and cook till a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  about 50 minutes total.  Now please remember all oven are different and cook differently.
I served this with a tomato, finely chopped cilantro and avacado salad  with a lime vinegarette.  

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

A collage of my kitty Bogart!!

Turn the heater on I need a nap

I'll just go get on my pillow

and take a mid day snooze

Friday, March 28, 2014

Why do these things happen to me

So every summer it seems I break a toe.  I cannot say whether it is because I am accident prone, a klutz or just plain careless.   

Well this broken toe is NOT my fault!!!

Here's what happened.  Yesterday while out and about running errands I decided I would treat myself to an iced carmel macchiato at Starbucks.  Get to the entrance hold the door open for the elder lady coming out.  Right behind her is her husband.  He is driving a motorized wheel chair thing.  Well he came screaming out that door right behind the wife.  Ran over my  sandal'd foot and nearly knocked me on my  keester.  I hollered "hold it".  Elder wife turned around and said  "oh Robert who have you run into now"?  Seems old Robert is new to this fancy, schmancy machine he's piloting and hasn't mastered the technique of not running into objects including people.

They were lovely people in spite of the fact that  Robert was a terror on wheels.  They were both concerned about my well being and the fact that I wasn't hurt.  What's a broken toe?  Hey I got nine more.  

Well today it's an odd color and it is splinted with two popsicle sticks and some bandages.  No I didn't go to the Dr they wouldn't do anymore than I have done.  Remember I'm quite experienced in the broken toe department.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Some random thoughts..............

Things that just pop into my head.  I knew, from experience, hernia surgery is a bit awkward to bounce back from.  But for a male it's a big pain, really big pain in the nether region.  And when a male who has never had a headache or pain meds, when he pulls up his pj top so I can look at his stitches and he sees the bruising  well the poor guy goes into a state of decline.  Trust me he will mend.  It;s just going to take longer than what he thought.  I dearly love my husband but he is far from accustomed to any pain even in his advanced years.

So on to another thought.  This thought came from our cat Bogey  "where the hell are all the birds"?  Bogey is quite used to sitting at the big window  gazing out, tail swaying side to side, bit of purring can be heard checking our those feathered creatures.  There ain't no birds in Yuma.  He has no form of entertainment other than the yarn balls sister made for him.  Oh and he confiscated the felt rooster my niece gave me.  Need to import some birds for the poor cat.

Now to Yuma itself.  Happy birthday Yuma you are now/almost 100 years old.  Guess we will be seeing you on Willard Scotts birthday list. Due to the surgery mentioned above we just might be around for the celebration.

But prior to the centennial/birthday celebration there is Midnight at the Oasis
What a spectacle this is for the city, the residents and the snowbirds.  If you are in the area buzz on over this weekend.

I have a lot more thoughts than this but my patient requires attention.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Refried Beans

Now I know they are not everyone's favorite.  But maybe it's because they opened the can and just heated them up. Don't ever do that again.

Well as luck would have it  a friends mother made us a dozen of the very best tamales I have ever eaten.  Perfectly spiced and the masa was not thick.  Damn scrumptious!!

So what do you serve with tamales.  I like refried beans but up until now I was just adding a bit of milk and green chiles to pump them up a bit.   Not anymore.  My friends mother told me to add  about a quarter cup of chicken stock, sour cream to the desired consistency.  Then add your green chiles and/or hot sauce.  Finish off with shredded cheese of your choice.  You will thank me I promise.

She did say thru the translation of her son, "sometimes I add chopped onion, or jalapeno peppers chopped or even salsa.  Depends who is sitting at my table.  This lady is an amazing women comes from a very small town outside of Guadalajara.  Speaks very  limited English but she knew when I told her how good her tamales were  because a big smile broke out.

No no photos....................we ate them ALL!!  Will order some before we leave to freeze and take with us.

Do you do this?

Denim—Wash less (or not at all)

Yes, that’s right, don’t wash your jeans. I was kind of grossed out at first but you’d be surprised how many people do this! Washing and drying jeans cuts their lifespan in half, and if you’re buying nice jeans this can really add up! The trick is to spot treat any stains and when they are starting to feel dingy you fold them up, put them in a ziploc bag and put them in the freezer for a few days. The low temperatures kill bacteria, remove any stink, and somehow, make them feel freshly clean. Try it for a couple months and see how it works for you, I’m betting you’ll love it!

Since I don't pay a lot of money for my jeans I don't see the need to do this.  But I do know people that do.

BTW I found this on a blog recently and if my computer hadn't crashed I would give her credit.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Olympics

Have been amazing!!  That is my humble opinion of course.  I'm sure if you were a Russian fan your heart is broken.  And you are hoping the team doesn't get sent to Siberia to live.  For those readers that don't know or care I'll explain.  The head Russian, Putin is pretty pissed the Russian hockey team did not even medal.  Look out for the Russian team in the next Olympics which is in Seoul South Korea.

Now the women USA hockey team are about to play those meanie Canadian women for the gold medal.  So I'm about to cut this short and watch the USA women play.  Hopefully, fingers crossed and with their skill level and this great coach they have I will come back here and talk about the game.

The Olympics on the other hand have been terrific.  Not because USA has won so many medals but the amazing athletes that are able to do the most difficult things in cold weather while it's sleeting, foggy and rainy.

Go Team USA Women's Hockey!!!

Well I'm back to tell ya it was a disappointing  finish for the USA Mens hockey.  It wasn't that they didn't play well it that they didn't play every minute of the game.  Much like the women.  But the women were fortunate to receive a Silver Medal.  

Being I am married to a Canadian I know Mr is secretly quite happy the Canadians won.  He says when a Canadian team wins he always says "lets take that Cup back to Canada where it belongs"!!!  I say pffffffffffttt. 

Can't wait to talk about the Winter Olympics in Seoul South Korea. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Dust if you must..............

The poem goes on....

Dust if you must.
But there is not much time
With rivers to swim and mountains to climb!
Music to hear, and books to read,
Friends to cherish and life to lead.

Dust if you must.
But the world’s out there
With the sun in your eyes,
the wind in your hair,
A flutter of snow, a shower of rain.
This day will not come round again.

Dust if you must.
But bear in mind,
Old age will come and it’s not kind.
And when you go, and go you must,
You, yourself, will make more dust.

...and is attributed to Mrs Rose Milligan from Lancaster. The poem was first published in the September 15th – 21st edition of The Lady (magazine) in 1998.

 One day I'll illustrate it all! (and nicely!)

What do you think of these wise words? Agree wholeheartledly or yearn for a tidy house? ; )

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

What is your personality type?

Take your test here          http://www.ipersonic.com/test.html

Mine is below

Harmony-seeking Idealists are characterized by a complex personality and an abundance of thoughts and feelings. They are warm-hearted persons by nature. They are sympathetic and understanding. Harmony-seeking Idealists expect a lot of themselves and of others. They have a strong understanding of human nature and are often very good judges of character.

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Could the solution of credit card hacking be solved

by just using our index finger or an eye print?  The problem with ANY of this is the information has to be stored somewhere and that somewhere must have a keeper of the gate.  And that gate keeper must be knowledgeable in keeping out the bad guys read  teenage boys in Russia. 

Sorry Russia I do not mean to cause ill will but you are housing and keeping under wraps a fellow who hacked his way into a lot of trouble.

Just heard on the NPR leave your computer at home and don't use your phone for anything important like banking etc.  Guess the hackers are out in full force.  Sure sounds to me like the hackers that are working overtime.  Terrorists without guns.

BTW I am not to fond of Microsoft right now.  On my way to Best Buy to have Windows eight removed because of all the bugs and replaced with Windows 8.1.  Hoping the guy that invented Windows 8 has gotten 40 lashes.  Boy are a lot of people PISSED!!

Monday, February 03, 2014

Words of wisdom.................

I do not have the temperament to be idle......
doing nothing makes me itch!!

Well that and the fact that we haven't had a drop of rain here in Southern Arizona.  Shea butter is my new best friend.  And it seems I'm using more this year than ever before.  Wonder if it's my old skin.  Now I'm not complaining because Southern Arizona is on an aquifer.  There is  water underground everywhere in this area.  That makes good growing for this lettuce belt.  Sunkist and Dole have unbelievable fields of vegetables. They call this area the lettuce bowl.   I wrote about it here.  So many find it hard to believe in this dry dusty desert this area would be second to Imperial Valley in California for growing.    If you are ever in this area stop by and spend sometime.  Not a cosmopolitan city by any means but during the winter months there is a ton of happenings.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Wonder how he knows

Our cat, Bogey is a quiet unassuming kinda feline  He is not aggressive in the least.  Has standoffish moments as well as some fleeting sweet, loving  moments.  But like most cats there aren't many of those. 

We rescued this sweet black kitty from Desert Hot Spring Animal Shelter.  He was about five months old and adjusted quickly.  Mr Doodles and I made a pledge that the new little guy, Bogey would not get any human food at all.  We have lived up to that promise.  All animals need treats tho.  So we decided twice a week he would get a small can of wet food.   Yes I know dry food is better for him  and also wet food stinks to high heaven.  That's  why I made Mr Doodles in charge of treating the furry creature.

Here's the part that puzzles me....................How does he know what days he gets his turkey and giblets  or his turkey and gravy or the roast chicken with gravy.  On Wednesday a.m. and Sunday a.m. the beast jumps up on the bed roots around, purrs as loud as a lion cub and sniffs noses.  Where do you keep your calendar Bogey?

He is quite helpful tho
He does keep us entertained in other ways also by playing catch with a little ball made of yarn my sister made for him.  Yes he can catch the ball when thrown but when tires of that activity he will hide said ball when he is ready to play again.  Careful Bogey don't be bringing that ball to our bed.  He also does an odd thing when you sit on the couch he will get on the back  and comb your hair.  He's quite gentle I just think of it as a cat massage.  And for some strange damn reason he enjoys that.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

An annoying scenario

We all know that people talk on their phones while driving and walking.  Therefore those folks aren't paying attention to their surroundings.  That goes without say DUH!!

So here's my problem............................... picture this scenario;

I am driving down the main aisle in front of my favorite grocery store.  I reach the front of the store and folks are walking out in front of my BIG A** truck.  They are on their phone probably talking to Millie asking her what she wants to bring to the pot luck.  Well could ya have done that when you were still sitting in your car.  Nooooooo your gonna get out of the car, punch in Millie's number all doing this while walking in front of my truck and not even looking.  Oh and the moron behind me is honking his horn,  Trust me buddy I would love to have smacked the lady but no I was being POLITE.

Now Millie's friend was/is not the only humankind that does this.  Just walk out of the store you were just in or going in to, just walking, on the phone or not, walking willy nilly  without a care in the world. My truck is kinda hard to miss.

Now yes I know there is a crosswalk in front of stores for people to go in and spend their hard earned money. 

Now you tell me where/when  did common courtesy go out the door.


Disclaimer here dear readers I am far from perfect we all have our moments but the above scenario is happening all the time and I am getting damn sick of it.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Sharing a recipe

We usually have a Super Bowl gathering at our place. They gather here cause we have a TV outside.   Friends have asked for this dish to be served again this year.

I am about to share one of the better chili recipes I have come across.  I wrote the original  entry  a few years ago. Since then I have found this recipe that's a pretty good replication of the ever popular Wendy's chili.

1 pound ground beef
1 - 14.5 Oz. can tomato sauce
1 - 14.5 Oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 - 14.5 Oz. can kidney beans (with liquid)
1 - 14.5 Oz. can pinto beans (with liquid)
1/2 cup diced onion
1/4 cup diced green chilies
1/4 cup diced celery
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 teaspoons cumin powder
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon black pepper
   salt if needed
1 cup water (instead of water I use beef broth, gives the chili a richer flavor)

1. Brown the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat; drain off the fat.
2. Using a fork, crumble the cooked beef into pea-size pieces.
3. I sauté the onion & celery instead of putting it in raw.
4. In a large pot, combine the beef plus all the remaining ingredients,
and bring to a simmer over low heat. Cook, stirring every 15 minutes,
for 2 to 3 hours.
For extra heat I will add a few dashes of Frank's hot sauce or a small can of Hatch red enchilada sauce.

Makes about 10 servings.

Most of the time I make this I double the recipe because it's usually for a crowd...........your choice cause it does freeze well.
Now follow this  next part and you will thank me later.

This is one of my favorite go to dishes for a cool lazy Sunday evening.

Start by making your favorite chili recipe.....................now follow the photos and you'll end up with a delicious dish.

start off with a burger patty in a bowl suitable for chili

next ladle chili over the burger
follow that with some diced onion and grated sharp cheddar
There ya have it.........my old standby go to meal when you want something hearty, warming and comforting. Add some toasted sourdough bread and a beverage of your choice, just remember to make enough because seconds will be requested I'm thinking.


Monday, January 20, 2014

Not Hatch

and certainly not 25 lbs. as I have tackled in the past.  But tasty none the less.
Now I shall come up with some tasty recipes to use with these peppers

Monday, January 06, 2014

Shame on me ...................

It has been a long time since I have posted here.  Seems Christmas goings on gets in the way.  Tree lot was really busy this year.

Lot's of happenings let's see if I can remember some of the..................

First of all congratulations to my dear sister for selling some of her art work.  It is just the very best feeling knowing that someone else likes your work.  And liking it is one thing but paying good, hard earned money to own it is another.  So dear sister keep up the good work as you shall prevail.

Speaking of selling things, dear Mr Doodles has sold several of his beaded bracelets in the last month or so.  Once again someone is forking out some cash for a piece that you made.  Good job Mr Doodles.

Some good friends got a job down in Texas, on the Gulf.  They are managing a quite fancy RV park that is right on the water.  And they don't even fish.  Well maybe they will once they get settled.  Funny we will be spending the 2014 summer on the beach in California.

A good friend became a Grandmother for the first time this past October.  This could be the only one so look out this child will well attended to. 

Our Stepmother finally sold her condo and will be moving on to bigger and better things I'm hoping.

My dear brother-in-law got another reprieve and his bladder cancer  test came back good.....YEAH!!

I start a new Yoga class next week.  We'll see how that works out.

There are some new places in Yuma to visit.  Good to see the town does not stagnate while we are all gone.  There is a cooking class I want to attend during the Lettuce Days Fiesta.

I was surprised by Mr Doodles with a Christmas gift a bit belated but a lovely gift none the less.  He ordered my a new Ninja mixer.  Not a Vita mixer which I would never agree to as the $$$ is over the top.  He told me he read all the reviews and heard of some problems after a few uses. My present blender was not doing my smoothies the way they should be made.   No matter I'm happy it will soon arrive and give my Ninja review here.

Happy New Year to all......................here's hoping 2014 is less turbulent in  many ways.