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Thursday, July 29, 2010

A Very Important Day

Yesterday, was very important because I accompanied, at his request,  My Special Man (yes, he has regained his special title) to his routine cardiology appointment.

You see, seven years ago, he had two heart valves, the mitral and tricuspid,  repaired because of symptoms of congenital heart valve defects. His appointment went well and I learned more about his current status in regards to his heart. From what I understand, the surgery was performed as an emergency surgery and basically saved his life because of the expeditiousness of the doctors.

Since our trip to Germany, he has independently initiated some major life style changes that certainly can aid in his longevity. The doctor was extremely pleased.  His managed  heart health along with his five year cancer survivor status continues to amaze me. In no way does he act or look like a man of his age. When we first met, I thought he was a least 10 years younger.

Does this look like an eighty-two year old man with a heart condition? This photo was taken in June of this year after we came  down on a tram from Zugspitze, the highest point in Germany. The summit is at an elevation of 10,000 feet and is a border crossing between Austria and Germany.

On the way up - - - taken from the tram.

We enjoyed some Apple Strudel at the summit restaurant, Deutschlands Biergarten. It was delicious!

Since my photos of our Germany trip are limited due to very difficult circumstances,  I will try to incorporate little snippets of Germany here and there in my blog.

Wishing you a Healthy Day.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

How Gorgeous Is This

I am so impressed with the talent that goes into doing such beautiful handwork. And, this is the work of a friend of mine that I met in blogland as a result of my blog. She lives in Czech Republic and contacted me several months ago via email after reading my blog. A lot of our interests are similar. We exchange emails and photos and she reads my blog. Even though she does not speak English, she does a wonderful job of writing emails in English. I guess you could say, it is like a modern-day pen pal. 

I marvel at the loveliness of her embroidery and handwork.

Thank you friend for sharing your friendship.

I wish special friendships for everyone.


Monday, July 26, 2010

Another Day At The Plant


Not much to say today except that I finally got out in the garden to do some severely needed "catch up activity". Much to my slight distress, there were/are many different kinds of weeds that I have not seen in my garden for a long time. So, along with raking up "stuff" from all the many trees on my property, I pulled some weeds as I was raking and hand watering. Here are a few of the kinds of weeds that I will have to aggressively approach in the near future or they will be taking up permanent residency in my garden!

Weed Cinquefoil
Dandelion Weed
Wild Sweet Pea
Weed Ground Ivy

I worked in the shade and there was a very slight breeze which kept me comfortable. During the few hours that I worked in the garden, I realized just how much I miss working in my garden. Gardening has been a part of most of my life and has always given me comfort - - - especially the amazing beauty of effort put forth.

This lovely Casablanca Oriental Lily that recently started blooming is a perfect example of why I enjoy gardening.
I hope you have a Happy Day.


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Finished A Knitting Project

Simple, simple, but it is finished and I am glad. The yarn was bought in Munich, Germany but I did not knit on it very much while away. The weather was unbearably hot and there was very little air conditioning. And, we were very busy being tourists. By the end of the day it was time to "fall into bed". Anywaaaaaaaaaaay. I like the finished scarf. It is a summery color and the yarn is very soft around the neck.The 80% cotton and 20% nylon make is a nice summer yarn to work with as well as to wear.

These are the other colors I soon will be working with. I'm not quite sure where the creative juices will take me. But, it is time for some new ideas that are quick and easy. The summer heat does not beg for big heavy projects!

Are you knitting any little quick projects? Any ideas for me?

Wishing you a pleasant Sunday.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

I Have One Too

If you look at Google front page today, this is what you will see. Quite nice Doodle - don't you think?

Google's Doodle of the Day - - - - - - - - ALPHONSE MUCHA
Posted by Seth Weintraub
July 24, 2010 10:09 AM

"Born on this day 150 years ago, the Czech painter is being celebrated on Google.com.

Alphonse Maria Mucha (24 July 1860 – 14 July 1939), a Czech Art Nouveau painter and decorative artist was known for his distinct style and his images of women. His work has widely influenced modern art in a wide range of fields.

His designs were influential to Hapshash and the Coloured Coat, designers who, in the 1960s, created posters for rockbands like Pink Floyd. His work also influenced artist Paul Harvey whose subjects have included Madonna and Charles Saatchi amongst others. Even Japanese Manga, fantasy, and comic book artists were influenced by his Art Nouveau style. Heavy metal band Soilent Green even used his work as the cover of their album Sewn Mouth Secrets.

In addition to being an artist, he is also credited with re-establishing Czech Freemasonry.

Check out the Alphonse Mucha foundation gallery for much more of his work."

A few years ago when I started to redecorate a bathroom off of the master bedroom, I selected a Mucha print with the theme of Sarah Bernhardt for a wall hanging . This is it - - - -

About that time I had an interest in reading about Sarah Bernhardt as well as Alphonse Mucha.  You see, I was able to combine my interest in the two unique individuals.

"Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923), reputedly the greatest actress who ever lived, was an exceptional character in every way. She was unconventional to the point of eccentricity, ahead of her time in her social and intellectual attitudes, creative to the extent that she also became a find sculptress and painter. In short, Sarah was driven by energies and insights which eventually made her great."   This quotation is from the book, The Incredible Sarah by Alan Arnold.

The book "Memories Of My Life" by Sarah Bernhardt copyright 1907 was a great read.

Have a Wonderful Day and pick up a book, if you can. I wish I had the time.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Cooking Dinner After A Busy Day

Yesterday was such a busy day - - - and the weather was very hot until it finally started to cool down in the early evening. We are suppose to have cooler weather for the next day or so and then it will return to high 90's. Anyway, after I finished some of the watering in the garden, a friend stopped by at 9:30 AM for coffee (I made iced coffee) and we visited until 11:00 AM. 

I  had just enough time to jump in the car and pick up a friend that I had not seen for awhile and we went a few towns away to Mokelumne Hill for lunch at a new restaurant called Bob-B-Que Barbecue Pit. The owner's name is Bob. The food was great and very reasonably priced. I am sure I will be returning to eat some more of the very moist and tender bar-be-que. The menu was quite extensive. After eating, we stopped at some thrift shops and poked around for something that we "could not live without".  Believe it or not we both came home empty handed. 

By now, it was 4 PM and I needed to get home to prepare something for dinner because I asked "the man" to come over at 6 PM for dinner. I had hoped to do some prep work on my dinner in the morning, but that did not happen. And, I really did not know what I was going to do with the boneless chicken breasts that I wanted to use. So it was time to think about what I could make using what was in the kitchen cupboards. This is what I came up with. I think I will call it - - - 

 Mushroom Chicken With Creamed Lime Sauce

I dipped the chicken in a beaten egg and then in dried bread crumbs that I seasoned with Lawry's seasoned salt. You   know the salt, the one that has been around forever. Brown both side of chicken in a  buttered skillet. Set aside.

I added the juice of one big lime to canned cream of chicken soup that I had thinned with about a half cup of 2% organic milk.

I sautéed about 10 ounces sliced mushrooms in a little butter and  whole fruit Persian Lime olive oil that I buy locally at Marisolio Olive Oil  Tasting Bar.

Then put the soup mixture in the bottom of a casserole dish and place the browned chicken breasts on top followed by the mushrooms, and then a slice of lime on each chicken breast.

I baked it at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes.  It looked pretty and IT WAS GOOD!

I served it with some fresh sliced squash from the farmer's market and chicken flavored rice. We topped it all off with some fresh peach shortcake (home made) for dessert. It really was a quite easy summer dinner to prepare.

As my blog indicates, we eat out a lot and even though it takes some time to prepare, I really like eating at home and just simply being home. Don't misunderstand, I enjoy being out 'n' about, but I am trying to find a "happy medium".

Wishing you Good Eating and Lots of Fun.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Sitting In The Prunella

Look at that Prunella ground cover. It has really flourished this year. The growth is so high it is coming through the seat of the chairs. It reminds me of the lyrics of the song "Oklahoma",  "The corn is as high as an elephant's eye".

The purple flowers look so pretty.

Needless to say, I have not been able to spend very much time in the garden. But, none the less, the flowers are doing their best at continuing to give me joy with their continual bursts of color.

It looks like I interrupted this "little guy's" nap when I was taking the garden hose from the hose rack. I am sorry "little guy."

Wishing you a beautiful Summer Day and maybe even a little nap.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Restaurant Critics

The way this blog is starting to look, I think we ought to become Restaurant Critics? I think I have been in more nice restaurants in the past 5 months than I have been in during the past 25 years. Yes, that means that we eat out a lot! It is quite amazing to me that we have been able to maintain our weight without gaining.

We enjoyed steamed mussels in a lovely tomatoe based sauce with great garlic bread at one of our favorite restaurants - Alchemy - in our little town at lunch time on Sunday following church services. Oh, I guess I have to confess that we had Apple Walnut Bread Pudding and Double Chocolate Mousse for our desserts. If we have dessert, we usually share one dessert, but not this time!

It looks like we will be going back to the same restaurant on Tuesday night. Before our trip to Germany, we joined another friend every Tuesday night for dinner at Alchemy. It is within walking distance of my home.

 Stay coooool.  It is very hot here in the Sierra Nevada Foothills.

Monday, July 19, 2010

It's Time For Refrigerator Jam

I really like making this Jam. It is almost like instant gratification because it is so very fast to make. On our way home from Santa Cruz Beach we stopped at one of the roadside stands that has fresh from the fields strawberries. They are oh, so good and sweet. And, the price is so much better than the grocery store.

Even though the recipe says to use 1 to 2 cup size jars, I made a few 1/2 cup size. I think they will be nice as a small favor any time I want to give "a little something" to a friend. It will be enough jam for a few scones or English muffins!

Look at these adorable labels for the jar lids. Aren't they just the "cat's pajamas"? I must admit that they are a tad bit extravagant but I could not help myself when I saw them on another blog. Sorry, I don't recall the blog name. But, if you want to order some, try checking out http://www.felixdoolittle.com/

The jam is oh, so good with a cup of coffee.

I hope you are having a Fabulous day.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Friday Night Date

Last Friday we went out to the movies and then to dinner. Isn't that what a typical date was in the past - a  loooooooooong time ago? Wait a minute. I guess it was dinner first and them to the movies. But, we are old  (I say that with tongue in cheek) and a  4 o'clock or thereabouts movie means that we can go to dinner and still get home earlier than midnight before I might turn into a pumpkin. Enough of that.

I wasn't to excited about going to a Tom Cruise movie but knew I probably would enjoy Cameron Diaz. Well, much to my surprise I really enjoyed the movie and Tom's performance. It was fun and had lots of action. Go see it if you can. 

Dinner at Talulah's Restaurant in Sonora was great. Even though we did not have reservations we were able to get seating. The place was very busy with tables filling as soon as they became available. We had eaten lunch at Talulah's in the past and knew we would be back for dinner sometime because we were very impressed with the small intimate ambiance and interesting artistic decor.

Dinner and a movie in places with air conditioning was a good choice for a day that was over 100 degrees and quite uncomforable. It seems as though across the United States everyone is having above average hot - hot - hot weather.

I hope you are staying cool with maybe a bowl of ice cream!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Through The Woods And To The Beach

This past Tuesday, we packed an overnight bag and the dogs hopped into the car and off we went to the beach.

Our halfway stop gave the dogs a chance to go for a  walk and then hang-out as we enjoyed some Sonic Burgers which we had never eaten in the past. It is like an old fashioned drive-in hamburger stop with a car hop on roller blades if you want to order from your car. You can eat in your car or at picnic tables. And, of course, you can eat indoors.  We were able to tie the dogs next to our picnic table. The food was good and it was fun for all.


Santa Cruz Mountain Highway

Santa Cruz Beach with Boardwalk and Amusement Park in the background.

We walked to the end of the wharf to check out a favorite restaurant of mine,  from many years past,  that serves the very best Clam Chowder. The wind was really blowing and it was quite cold! And, does he look happy? He tells me he is!

We decided to start collecting some ornaments to decorate our Christmas tree this coming Christmas, so it will be personalized as our tree.  Well, it was just eight days ago when we were in the grocery store line waiting to check out when I turned to look at the man in my life and he said to me "I am as happy as a clam". I didn't give it much thought other than the fact that I really liked what he said,  until I was in a shop in Santa Cruz looking for an ornament. And, much to my surprise, hanging on the ornament rack in front of my face was this darling ornament. I could hardly believe it. I bought it and returned to my man who was waiting outside with our dogs. I don't think I was in the store more than five minutes and we had our ornament.

In the evening we had dinner reservations for 7:30 PM at the Crow's Nest on The Santa Cruz Yacht Harbor. We had a window seat and the view of the lighthouse and many types of  boats was spectacular. 

We enjoyed steamed clams and I ordered the Hawaiian Opaka Paka with macadamia nuts in a soy ginger sauce. I topped it off with blueberry key lime pie. I had a happy tummy!

It looks like we liked the steamed clams.

The next day we enjoyed the sights of Capitola and had coffee and Cinnamon Crumb Cake at Mr Toots Coffee House.

This is some of the fun that was going on at the beach.

And, then there was this "eye catcher" of a vehicle in the parking lot.

We had a wonderful time.

We are continuing with our counseling and day by day our love for one another is being renewed - and getting stronger!

Have a great day and hug the ones you love!


Some Additional Special Photos


Mother's Day 2012

Mother's Day 2012

Happy Family (2014)

Happy Family (2014)
Grandma Pride

Valentine's Day 2013

Valentine's Day 2013

High School (1957) Friends Of Mine On The Left Live In New York and We Met In Canada In 2011

High School (1957) Friends Of Mine On The Left Live In New York and We Met In Canada In 2011

Bud Mietz

Bud Mietz
1928 - 2014