Friday, March 27, 2009

Pleasing to my eyes

I liked the colors and pattern on this tote bag I saw at WalMart the other day. (I didn't like it enough to buy it. I just wanted to take a picture for future reference, in case I could use that kind of design or color scheme.)

A small explosion of light purple flowers at the arboretum. I have no idea what it was. It had no

This is what the buds look like just before they open.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Some baby stuff

I made this little digital card last month when Jerry's cousin had her 3rd baby.

Then, one of his co-workers became a grandma for the first time. I used some of the same pieces, but made something different.

After I made the blankie page for Emma, I decided to try to make a more typical page layout using an actual picture of baby Emma. I like this one even better.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Random shots

In spite of my efforts over the past few days to weed out as many as I can, I still have over 25,000 images in my computer. Most of them are of plants and bugs, either from around here, or on one of our little jaunts. I decided to post of few of the miscellaneous stuff that I took pictures of, but never blogged (that I know of), and don't really know why I kept them:

Well, I know why I kept this one. It was for future reference, so I could check this tree the following spring and see if there were mantids in it. (I never did.)

I was serious about it at the time, though.

Aww, look... it's Boomie back when he had 4 legs. And that's me at the kitchen sink. Good thing I'm kinda far away in this picture, because I hate seeing pictures of my butt.

Exhibit "A" for having a big butt.

Marley keeping watch over her balls.

Roadtrip! Driving through a wind farm.

A doomed romance: A smooth, snakelike plant that has entwined itself around a cactus-like plant. From the arboretum.

Junk on my fireplace hearth.

Tendrils. How I love their curls! Might explain why I have a fascination with my garden hose.

I sometimes take pictures of the plant signage at the arboretum.

I really liked this old barn. I shot it out the window as we drove by.


I made this sign several years ago for the bathroom. It's pretty much self-explanitory.

A favorite landmark on the way to Death Valley.

My dad made this mosaic in the early '60's, I think. Can you tell what it is?

I used to park in front of this house when I picked up the boys from high school. I called it the Cactus House.

The hair of the dog is upon us. Always.

After Eleanor died, we went around taking pictures of everything in her house, because we knew everything had to go, and we wanted to preserve the memories. This was her chair.

This was her kitchen. The banana stickers were stuck there by Jerry's dad, starting way back when bananas first started having stickers on them. Nobody ever took them off that post. Not even after he died. Not even after Eleanor died. They tore the house down a few years ago, stickers and all.
And somewhere in all that kitchen clutter is a little treasure that I kept.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Bean mosaics

What I've been doing with the kids in Mrs. W's class this week:

I've got lots of beans and stuff leftover. I'm going to make a big pot of soup next week, and bring some to school for the kids to taste.
I also want to try this recipe with the red lentils. (They're the bright orange ones.)
After that, there will still be enough beans leftover for me do play around with: art, food, whatever inspires me.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Old Bisbee Roasters

(This is not an advertisement. It's just a friendly recommendation.)

I don't drink coffee. Never acquired a tasted for it. Jerry does, though. We used to buy coffee beans by the pound from local coffee places that roasted them right on the premises. Unfortunately, it's been years since those small businesses have disappeared, leaving only the likes of Starbuck's, Peets, Coffee Bean, and other big coffee corporations. According to Jerry, their coffee is just OK. Not great. And since it's not roasted in the stores, when you buy a bag, it doesn't have that fresh-roasted taste.

So he combed the internet for a better way to get his coffee, and he found Old Bisbee Roasters.
Located in the small town of Bisbee, Arizona, they roast your beans to order and ship the same day. He has tried several different flavors and has been very satisfied. I just thought I would pass along a recommendation to the handful of people who read this and might be interested. Below I have copied their "About Us" page just to tell you more about the company:

We support family-owned farms and co-operatives that produce The finest tasting varieties in the coffee-growing world.
If you are new to Old Bisbee Roasters, you are in for a treat. Small farm coffee is rare, delicious and unusual. Our goal at Old Bisbee Roasters is to allow you to experience small farm coffee "roasted to taste" and delivered fresh.

You will taste the pride, love and devotionof our coffee growers in every cup.

Whenever possible, the coffee growers family or farmer's co-op name is printed on the label, as well as the growing region and country of origin. We roast these intense and unusual coffees by taste, not to color or brewing style. For this reason, you will find there are no "French Roasts" at Old Bisbee Roasters, only the roast that develops the most flavor from each bean.

Roasting "to taste" allows you to experiencethe joy of small farm coffee.

We are passionately devoted to quality, and find the best coffee is often available in very short season. Please be sure you are receiving the "Coffee News from Old Bisbee Roasters" newsletter in your email to stay up to date on new coffee available for roasting each month.
Our newsletter is published the day we receive and cup new green bean, often every three weeks.

Our website is updated twice a day, the coffee you seeis the coffee available for roasting.

Orders received before 1:00pm Arizona time, are roasted and shipped the day we receive them, Monday through Friday. As we run out of stock quickly, it is not possible to place orders in advance, or reserve an order for a future date.

Your coffee will be custom roasted in a 10 lbs. drum,packaged with your name and roasting date on the label,and shipped while still warm by USPS Priority Mail. Almost all orders shipped within Arizona are delivered next-day, while orders shipped coast to coast within the US are delivered within two days.

If for any reason you are not 100% satisfied with your coffee, I will replace your order or refund the cost of your coffee.

I believe you will find nothing in this world compares to the taste of a truly good coffee from a small family farm.

As to the price, Old Bisbee Roasters is comparable to Starbuck's, et al, at least here in So Cal, even including the shipping cost. (and if you order more than 2 pounds, the shipping is free.)

So if there are any coffee lovers out there who want to greatly enhance their home coffee brewing, I encourage you to try Old Bisbee Roasters.

Monday, March 16, 2009

10 months

It's been 10 months since Boomer's surgery. Still going strong. This was taken over the weekend, in the back yard. He wasn't very photogenic this time, and I didn't feel like trying too hard, so this was the best shot.

At first glance, you almost don't notice the missing leg, but if you look carefully, you can also see that he has his rear leg perfectly triangulated between the front two. You can also see a large bulge beside his collar. That's a benign fatty tumor he's had for a few years.

You can also see Marley standing behind him. Poor Marley. Black dogs are so hard to photograph.
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Sunday, March 15, 2009

New sandals

Check out my new sandals. They're Keen. (That's the brand name) They're nifty too. (That's my adjective.) I know, they look tacky with socks, but too bad. In fact, I want to go out and buy some new colorful socks just because they'll be visible.

Here's a picture from online. I love the green color. Yeah, they're a little clunky, but so am I. I hope they last. They were pretty expensive. But I just don't do well in cheap shoes. That is not to be snobbish. I have messed up feet, and I need a well made, supportive shoe. So today, I've helped the economy and my feet.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Pretty in Pink

I just felt like celebrating this nice little flowering tree.

Monday, March 09, 2009

What season are we in now?

Nothing beats the beauty of a colorful leaf that falls in the almost-spring. This is from my nandina plant this morning. I'll take my beauty any way I can get it.

Nice drippage

These were still in my camera from last week.

Trader Joe's Video

My friend Kathi sent me this cute little video that pretty well sums up the Trader Joe's shopping experience.

Make sure you have your sound turned on. There's lyrics.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Where I am now.

Random updates, just because the title seems fitting after my previous post:

I got my half-barrel planters. I put tomatoes, peppers, and herbs in them.

Michael's hair is short again. He looks more mature this way, yet somehow he still looks like my little boy, only with a beard.

Marley barfed the other day. It cleaned up OK. Maybe too well. Now I have one really clean spot in what has been revealed to be a really dirty carpet.

At a comittee meeting at the arboretum the other day, one of the ladies brought cookies and Yogi Tea for everyone. I was reluctant to try the tea, but I did so just to be polite. It was really good, and I ended up asking where I could get some. And today I got some. I can hardly wait to make it and enjoy it with a cookie.

I have a package of Girl Scout cookies hidden in my underwear drawer.

We're going to Joshua Tree for spring break again at the end of this month. This time we're bringing Michael and Jessi with us.

I hate the never ending doom and gloom in the news, and I'm sick of hearing about the octomom.

I'm going to watch Waking Ned Devine on St. Patrick's Day. They have it on Hulu.

My springtime allergies are starting up. Time to get back on the Sinus Rinse regimen.

Where I'm from

I am from the shiny wood floor, from Mr. Bubble and tuna noodle casserole.

I am from the house that was painted too yellow, and then repainted a softer yellow, surrounded by a big yard full of multitudes of wonderful bugs.

I am from the desert, the little hardy plant that sprouted up from the cracks of a giant rock.

I am from holiday dinners featuring 3 different kinds of meat, and maybe one vegetable, and heart disease, from Grandpa Nat and Grandpa Harry, the Golubs and the Bernsteins.

I am from creativity too often squashed by the necessities of everyday life and from under-used brilliance.

From "Children should be seen and not heard," and "Don’t run through the living room!"

I am from a singular experience with the Easter Bunny and a few more with a “Hanukkah bush”. I was told that being a Jew is a biological trait, like eye-color, but beyond that, I was given no religious education.

I'm from Hollywood, California and Russia and Romania, meat loaf and mashed potatoes, and hot cereal made by Daddy on weekends.

From a blended family that nobody would bat an eye about in this day and age, but back then it was a secret too scandalous to tell, involving a failed marriage and a gay husband. Two strangers who became sisters. And from a plain but sturdy girl who dropped out of school at age 12 to go to work and help support her family.

I am from the top of the piano, draped with a shawl and covered with photos. From the ancient portfolio filled with slowly disintegrating drawings by a talented young artist who immigrated to this country almost a hundred years ago. Images of people long dead and places we will never be able to identify. And from the cardboard box that says Huntsinger Turkey 12 lbs, 8 oz. that is full of slide trays with hundreds (thousands?) of slides from several decades. That box and those slides have passed to me, and slowly they are being scanned into the digital age. Slowly.

I got this unusual meme from four little birds. It's kind of like Mad Libs, only you have to think a little more, and the results are less hilarious and more poetic.

The template for it is here.