Saturday, 16 July 2016

Eat Your Vegetables

Our summer garden has been quite fun for our little guests from Finland!

They run outside, fill their watering cans and make sure that all the plants get wet/soaked.

Before dinner there is the ritual of 'what is ready to pick' ----- carrots, cucumbers, mint, tomatoes, squash, peppers?

Still waiting for those darn strawberries to grow.

Then out comes the hose to rinse their harvest.

Appetizers consist of sliced raw vegetables, mint-infused water for the little ones and sprigs of rosemary for the adult gin and tonics.

Eating out of the garden, one of my favorite summer rituals!!!

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Who Ya Gonna Call?

Went from Wait List to Priority a week before taping!

Friends in front.
El Capitan Entertainment Center in the back.
Free tshirt was tossed into the crowd by the warm-up comedian!

Waiting in the back alley for the stars to depart.

If you live in Southern California it is a given that at some point you will see/meet/speak/photograph a celebrity because so many stars of television and film live here.

If you have friends visiting from the East Coast it is super fun to take them to a taping so that they can see celebrities up close and find out what goes on when a show is taped.

If you are lucky, you will get Priority Seating (which means you will get inside the studio and even if you land in the back row it is still a good seat as everything is much smaller than you would imagine).

If you are incredibly lucky, you will see the cast of the new Ghostbusters walk out and sit on Jimmy Kimmel's couch --- Melissa McCarthy! Kristen Wiig! Kate McKinnon! Leslie Jones!

If you are lucky beyond your wildest expectations…….halfway through the segment the original cast will join the gals on stage --- Bill Murray! Dan Aykroyd! Ernie Hudson! Annie Potts!

Akyroyd played harmonica and sang with Jimmy's band while Bill Murray danced with Kristen Wiig. It was amazing. The entire studio audience was on their feet screaming and clapping for the rest of the show (I lost my voice for days afterward and my girlfriend burst a blood vessel in her hand from clapping so hard).

What a night……who you gonna call ?

Here is the link to get tickets.

Friday, 27 May 2016

Bonfire at Moonlight Beach

One of the few San Diego beaches that still has fire pits. 

Who doesn't want to build a fire, watch a sunset, eat some dinner and watch the flames dance in the darkness.

We went old school with wood from fence posts and tree limbs, a couple of matches, twigs and some newspaper.

 And it worked out fine.

And the sunset was beautiful.

And the fire really took off when it got dark.

Nearby, were little kids in pajamas, a large group of high schoolers and a couple of families.

And just off to the left of us, there was a group that really meant business.

They carried a gallon jug of gasoline down the hill.

And one of the longest pallets I have ever seen at the beach.

There was shock and awe and screams of "I think the fire department might be coming by."

So for fun and fire and entertainment, check out Moonlight Beach, it is never boring!

Monday, 23 May 2016

Meat Cupcakes with Mashed Potato Frosting

I have a sweet tooth. Or perhaps sweet teeth is more apt.

I like chocolate and cake and candy and ice cream and all things sweet.

I have never understood people that don't have a sweet tooth.

Which brings me to my brother. Who always passes on dessert. Doesn't matter what kind. 

So for a milestone birthday, one has to be creative.

Hence a meat dessert.

That has an air of celebration about it.

Bake your favorite meatloaf or meatball recipe in individual portions in a cupcake tin (skip the liner, it will just get greasy). Bake, remove from pan and set them to cool on a wire rack.

Place on a pretty plate, platter or cake stand.

Whip up your favorite mashed potatoes and scoop into a piping bag (once they are cool enough to handle or use a kitchen towel to hold the piping bag).

Frost (realizing that it would have been wise to whip out all the lumps ahead of time).

Sprinkle/push in diced colorful bell peppers and thinly sliced scallions into the mashed potato frosting (in lieu of chocolate sprinkles).

Top with candles.

Light and sing Happy Birthday!

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Paper, Cotton, Leather, Linen……Garage Door

Anniversary gifts by the year --- 1 is Paper and 60 is Diamond.

There is a chart of gifts listed for all the years in between.

Like 13 is Lace.

The first of this month was our wedding anniversary and apparently we have made it to the 'sculpture' anniversary.

We have never followed the chart but I think this year we accidentally somewhat followed the etiquette of correct gift-giving:

  1. 1.
    the art of making two- or three-dimensional representative or abstract forms, especially by carving stone or wood or by casting metal or plaster.

As we had our new 'Happy Anniversary' garage door installed on April 1st.

Romance is alive and well.

Friday, 25 March 2016

Spring Planting

A trip to Pearson's in Vista to fill the trunk with herbs, vegetables, fertilizer and a few flowers for aroma and pollination purposes.

Love this place, see last year's post.

Filled two of our garden boxes with the following:

Tomorrow the tomatoes, zucchini, squash, lavender, bush beans, strawberries and pink flowers will find a home in our backyard.

What are you growing in your garden?

Wednesday, 23 March 2016


This morning I had the privilege of attending a swearing-in ceremony in downtown San Diego.

There were 724 people from 77 countries.

Stand up if you are from Afghanistan and on and on …... Sweden and Syria and the United Kingdom and Uzbekistan.

The largest groups represented Iraq and Mexico.

They all took the pledge and became U.S. Citizens.

Then we stood up (hundreds of family members and friends in the balcony) and all the proud new Americans in the Grand Hall below.

With our right hand over our heart.

And even for those of us who have repeated these words over and over since grade school, it meant something, it really meant something.

"I pledge allegiance to the Flag
of the United States of America,
and to the Republic for which it stands,
one Nation under God, indivisible, with
liberty and justice for all."

During the ceremony, there was a taped message from President Barack Obama welcoming the new Americans. We all chanted about the importance of registering to vote and then actually voting.

But what touched me the most was the speaker from the Department of Labor who reminded us that the group in front of us was what made America great and he went on to describe his own Thanksgiving tradition that was a mix of turkey and Chinese dumplings that reflect his heritage.

Reminding the crowd (and I am paraphrasing here) that although there is a lot of divisive talk and political speeches regarding immigrants right now, we are a country of immigrants and that is what makes us special and great.

Let us not forget that.