Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Fall Catch-ip

As I write this, we are experiencing yet another power outage expected to last 4 hours, better than 4 days as some of our other outages have. Still it is cold and dark and I want to wash myself but as we are on a well, no water

As previously stated, I hadn’t blogged since August so I am going through the highlights. As I write it is dark and dead outside and I miss color so much.  Above is a family outing to Northville with my sister in law from Washington State missing Naomi and Maya

Tessa took up cross country running. When I was a kid it was believed that running more than 600 yards was harmful to women. Thinking has changed 
Lots of pretty sunrises on my bike rides
Some of my harvest. Not pictured are zillions of peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers 
Our library 
At an art fair I bought this repurposed French horn as a speaker. I had a close friend who played French horn and it reminds me of him
When the grandkids come, they draw, drink Izzy’s and eat pocky sticks. This is one of Allie’s creations age 9
September blooms 
Lots of praying mantis 
A good year for hibiscus 
Late fall bouquet 
In October went to LA to visit friends helping one take care of dogs and grandchildren 
She was a sweet husky
Also took some bike rides along the ocean
Visited the art museum on Loyola Marymount campus. We had a personal tour by this young woman 

Interesting art deco building near where I stayed 
Bike ride to a great enchilada place in Hermosa Beach
Me helping one of my charges putting together a puzzle
Plane ride over the Colorado River
A salad I made for my Chosen Sisters with some of my harvest

Good year for hydrangeas 
And nasturtium 

Burning bush
Maya and Tessa 
Colors were delayed this year
Melting skittles 

It was a crazy summer. Usually May is rainy but we had a drought but record rains in August when it usually is dry 
We had a mast year, when all the oak trees decide to make lots of acorns. Along with a bumper crop of walnuts the squirrels didn’t need to come raid the bird seed but now that’s it is January they came back 


Friday, January 5, 2024


Pateis de nata. The national treat
I loved the varied architecture in Lisbon
Every square had a unique pattern of tile work
rossio square
The Santa Justa Elevador. Lisbon is very hilly. To get to one neighborhood from another, there are elevators and trams galore. This one is more than a hundred years old and very popular 
Love art nouveau 
The main square facing the river
They like big ham sandwiches 
Beautiful Christmas lights all over
Huge ball you could go inside

Well it’s been a while. When I started this blog 15 years ago upon being diagnosed with cancer, I faithfully had a post everyday. I did have short blog before that when I stayed in Italy for 6 weeks. 

But after I seemed to survive the cancer, I posted less plus I got into trouble for oversharing, especially of others peoples business. Also this blog is much harder to use since the app has been deleted. I do like to take photos so I turned this into a photoblog 

But I haven’t posted since the summer and the longer I didn’t post, the harder to start

So basically I’ve been doing OK. We seem to be healthy. I try to run or bike every day, harder now that it’s winter. I get slower and slower. I see the kids and grandkids as often as I can

highlights of the last few months: a visit from my SIL, a trip to LA, and our recent trip to Portugal

I have taken thousands of photos as I have seen beautiful things

We have been planning to go to Portugal for a while. it is much cheaper in December as it it is colder and rainier plus I was able to get a few discounts making the trip possible. In anticipation I tried to learn Portuguese though it was the Brazilian variety with a different vocab and pronunciation. I can read signs and simple sentences but the pronunciation is very difficult for me. We did spend a day in Salamanca Spain and I could understand the natives so much easier

The plan was to stay in Lisbon 2 days and nights in a hotel more or less going out on our own, take a bus to Porto stopping halfway in Coimbra and then get on the boat for a week on the Douro River

We stayed in a suburb but across from a metro station. With a 6.50 euro transport pass, good for trams, buses, funiculars, streetcars elevators and of course the subway for 24 hours, we had little trouble getting around. We did use the hotel shuttle too when our pass ran out 

We lost 4 hours due to a very late plane but at least it didn’t rain every minute as forecasted

There were fancy Christmas lights all over. Although we had hardly any sleep for 48 hours, we strolled through downtown Lisbon late into the night as the second night, rain was forecasted. We drank ginja, their cherry bandy and glue went n in the Christmas markets. 

I will show much more in the next few days 

Sunday, August 6, 2023



The house at dawn
I planted the peppers and tomatoes in patio pots to keep an eye on them. Since I was gone on vacation during planting season, things had a late start but I have harvested plenty of yellow squash, Swiss card, zucchini and cucumbers. I made tasty refrigerator pickles with the latter

Some seeds I save year to year like zinnias orange cosmos and nasturtium 

Inside of a poppy

A new plant for me: the popcorn plant. Its leaves smell like popcorn 

This is a closeup of one of my orchids. I think it looks like an eagle

As you can tell, I have a lot of gardens and much time is spent keeping it relatively weed free and trimmed. I lost a lot of plants over the winter. Also I learned that I should never grow fennel and dill near each other as they cross pollinate yielding something that smells like neither. pulled out a trash bag of these mutants

I also spend lots of time biking and running getting slower and slower. I will talk about more fun things in another post


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