Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Gold In Them Thar Hills !!

Phewwww...this is a busy time of year !!! So very fun, but too little time in the day. Sunday was a relative day of rest. We had a leisurely waffle breakfast then headed off to Coloma for a 1849 California Christmas celebration. Coloma is a very tiny town and State Park about 20 miles from us down on the South Fork of the American River. It is the site were James Marshall discovered gold in California and started the massive Gold Rush. It's a beautiful setting and always a pleasant day to go there. This Sunday, however, we were there so Jim could play with The Dry Creek Rounders who were providing wonderful entertainment for all the visitors. The band is so good, so fun to listen to and , of course, such awesome people that it's always fun to hang out in their sphere !
I've been looking at a lot of houses with Molly,but so far everyone that she's interested in is sold before she can get in an offer ! We saw a cute possibility this afternoon and now she can't get ahold of her realtor to check out the interior. Sooner or later the right combination will come along, but it sure is frustrating !!
The weather is staying very un-Xmas like. Cold up here , but sunny and warm in the valley and the prospect for a white Xmas this year looks bleak ! Maybe the weather is why I'm having trouble organizing myself ......baking, shopping , gift wrapping , etc, .......this year. I'll just panic next week and power through it all !

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Xmas Tomatoes !

Look at this ........we just picked these tomatoes and ,if you can read my little Xmas countdown board , there are only 21 days until Christmas ! We've occasionally harvested tomatoes in the first part of November, but certainly never in December ! The plants of course are long gone......brown, shriveled and dead, but the little tomatoes just hang on to the vines and eventually turn red. Very strange weather so far this Fall/Winter season.
Just as I was settling in to watch a little football and nurse along my llama injured leg.......I got a phone call from Boyce. Tess had fallen up on their ranch ,broken her wrist and was on her way into surgery !! It was the same wrist she'd broken in Thailand and if she was going to break something that wrist was a good thing to break as it was never set right in Thailand and had given her trouble ever since. Still.......no fun to break a wrist !!! They inserted some pins to hold all the pieces in place and hopefully it will heal well and be better than ever.
Yesterday I spent the day with Molly looking at houses. She hopes to buy one soon to take advantage of the low prices and great interest rates. She's been pre-approved for a loan and so is good to go. She found a sweet little house up in Colfax that she loves......so after work tomorrow she'll take another look with Ross and maybe think about an offer !
Still no rain or cold weather in the forecast for next week.......guess we'll have to grin and bear this great tomato weather !

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Four Fab Days !

A near perfect Thanksgiving weekend !! Although the day was wet and cold, the power stayed on and everyone made it safely "up the hill" on Thanksgiving Day. It was a cozy, often hilarious day.........full of love and abundant food !
Friday Molly, Ross and I did a little mini Black Friday excursion. Ross got a great deal on a big screen TV and Molly and I just had fun being out and about. I hope their new TV fits in their living room......they may have to cut a hole in the wall !
Yesterday Jim and I went down to Lodi to watch the Foresthill Wildfires play in a championship game. Brrrrr......it was cold and foggy down there, a condition we fortunately don't get up here. The game was a bit disappointing .....the Wildfire lost 6o to 6 !! Well, better luck next year !
We took the chance to do a little exploring since we were down in unfamiliar territory . We found lots of beautiful country and quaint little towns all along the southern foothills. When just about home we stopped in at a great little Chinese restaurant in Cool and picked up some dinner to take home. We actually watched two movies on our Roku while we enjoyed our dinner.
Today was all about working outside.....it was such a gorgeous day. I got lots of pruning done and even put up the outside Xmas lights. Oh...... Boyce texted me this afternoon .......the infamous llamas are in the trailer and on their to their new home at Tess and Boyce's Stoney Oak Ranch !! They even sent a video to prove it ! I guess I'm about ready to forgive Buster......the mean llama..... even though my leg got pretty badly infected by his mauling of my leg.......it's finally about healed and all is forgiven !

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

So Much to Be Thankful For !

I just got done making the ginger cookies for the "big day", the rolls are made .....so tomorrow will be the Jello salad [it's my oldest tradition], three pumpkin pies and tearing the stuffing up . Thanksgiving Day itself will be a piece of cake.....I want plenty of time to enjoy each and every person who shows up at our table.
I'll take a few minutes here to catch you all up on the last week which was really fun one ! Last Friday night Jim and I headed up to Foresthill High School to watch our UNDEFEATED football team, The Wildfire. It was about 33 degrees, windy and alternately rain and sleet.........and the place was packed !! Everyone toughed it out and were rewarded with a big win ! It's on now to the conference championship game....this Saturday down in Lodi. Not bad for our little school with a population of around 80 kids!
Saturday we had planned to go up to Tess and Boyce's to help wrangle their new llamas into a trailer to take up to their place. But.......it was not to happen ! When I got up that morning and came downstairs something seemed not quite right. I opened the door that goes out to the garage and saw what it was ! Our water heater had given out and the garage was flooded with an inch of water. What a mess !!! And we'd had such a fun day planned together ! So sad....... Jim lined up a plumber for that afternoon and I took off to do what I could to help with the llamas. Well....I got up to Oroville about noon and off we went to pick up Buster and Lady , the new llamas. It was a beautiful day in a beautiful place, but the llamas were ugly mean ! There were 5 of us there and we were never able to get those stubborn animals in the trailer ! We finally gave up when Buster ran over me , slicing my ankle up . It started to swell and has not stopped yet.....it must have bruised a bone or tendon. Whatever is wrong, it is not fun and I miss having two good legs !! Tess and Boyce felt terrible, but I would not have missed all the fun for the world !
Sunday was spent on the sofa with my leg propped up on a pillow......I minded not a bit, there were some great football games on all day.
Tomorrow my Molly has the day off so we'll spend the day together. One of my favorite traditions of all.....last minute grocery shopping for Thanksgiving together. Does that sound like a lame tradition? Believe me.....it's one that I cherish.
I wish that Jilly and Josh were here to join us on Thursday.......I love you both so very much and you will be in my thoughts all the day long.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Monday, Monday........

Kind of a disjointed day......even for a Monday ! I was just getting ready this morning to bake some bread to take to Amanda's mom and dad's house for dinner tonight when my phone rang . It was Peg, Amanda's mom, ......dinner tonight was cancelled. Molly had texted me earlier letting me know that she was sick and wouldn't be able to go and I guess about that same time Peg heard from Amanda that she was sick also ! We'll try again sometime soon.....it's so difficult to find a day when everyone can make it.......but I'm sure we'll all find a way to be together soon. In the meantime........get better soon Molly and Amanda .
Oh.......today Tess started her new-old job !! She and her boyfriend, Boyce, have moved out of Humboldt and have started setting up their homestead about 70 miles from here. Putting in a well and bringing in electricity .....not to mention building a home....all require a bit of money ! Therefore.....Tess is back in San Francisco working at a job she had a few years ago. She was very good at it and they were very happy to have her back. To save money she'll be living with her dad and Susan during the week and then heading up to her and Boyce's ranch during the weekend. I'm so glad she'll be closer and look forward to lots of fun times with her !

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Buckwheat....Over a Quarter of a Century !

My youngest baby is 26 years old today !!! Impossible ! Molly is still the adorable, sweet girl she's always been and I'm so lucky to be able to spend time in her life with her. I see her usually about once a week and always enjoy each and every minute of it . Today I went down to drop off her presents and give her a few hugs. Ross joined us and we went to Tsudas......a great deli in Old Town....and enjoyed some great sandwiches, homemade potato chips and lively conversation. We then headed off to check out some of our favorite junk shops. No luck with treasures,but still a lot of fun.
Sorry about this photo....I wanted to find one of Molly all by herself, but apparently I've given her the photo book that has all her photos in it ! This one was taken when we lived in Idaho, Molly was probably about three and it was on a Xmas tree cutting expedition. Big brother, Josh, stands by......always Molly's fiercest defender !

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Lazy Autumn Weekend !

It's cold, wet and dark.........Fall must be here ! We can't complain, it's been beautiful for a long time and my pastel flowers really do clash with my Thanksgiving decorations......yes, it's time for a change in the weather !
Yesterday was a burn day......meaning we were able to have a large bonfire of various trimmings and cuttings that had piled up over the summer. I guess I'll never outgrow my fascination with fire......the large burn piles are one of the great perks of life in the country. Always fun and exciting days.
After the pyrotechnics were over I headed down to Auburn to meet Molly and do a little thrift store Xmas shopping. Lots of people had the same idea ! The store was packed and the treasures were little.......kind of disappointing ! We headed over to Target.....which never disappoints .....and picked up a few things. Xmas will be a little different this year...... fewer gifts and littler gifts with more cash involved. Sounds confusing ? It is ! Molly's helping guide me through the process.....the challenge is, how to keep Xmas morning exciting for less money !

Today is , of course, devoted to football......go Niners !

Monday, October 31, 2011

Witchy Woman !

Happy Halloween ! Still one of my favorite holidays even though it's not nearly as fun as the days of old ! I miss my little witches and ax-killers......so much anticipation and excitement as darkness came on ! I do have on an orange tank top today and down at Raleys they gave me a free piece of candy ! I'll light a few candles tonight and we'll finish off the pumpkin pie I made on Saturday, but other than that........business as usual !
This weekend was an excellent one ! Saturday Molly and I met my mom at Taylors .....an old fashion hamburger joint in Loomis. It was a beautiful day and so we were able to sit outside in the sun. We split a burger and splurged on conversation......a really fun afternoon. Yesterday we headed down to Molly and Ross' for a few hours of pickin' and singin'. Jim really enjoyed the afternoon and ,of course, I did also ! It was so warm down in Auburn, but by the time we got back up here it was downright chilly. We warmed up with a dinner of Chinese noodle soup . Earlier in the day I had switched our bed from summer to winter.......off with the lightweight quilt and on with the down comforter......it was incredibly cozy and warm.
Sounds like we'll have a day ,maybe two, of nice weather then snow later in the week......I guess I'm ready !

Friday, October 21, 2011

This One's for You, Jill and Molly !

Early last summer while Jill and family were here visiting we decided to "set up " the deck. It was a super late start to the warm weather and I hadn't gotten around to putting up the umbrellas or putting on the new outdoor tablecloths that I had purchased. I was so excited.......excited that Jill was here, excited that summer was here and excited with my new tablecloths ! Well, we got up the umbrellas , washed all the chairs off and took the tablecloths out of the bag. .............Molly and Jill did not like them !! Said they looked way too "Fall-ish", not the right colors for summer. Bummer........I had to agree and so retrieved the old ones from a box in the garage. The deck looked great.....summery and inviting with the old, but brightly colored tablecloths. Last weekend as I was again cleaning the deck furniture I remembered the rejected tablecloths .....found them in the garage and they were perfect for Autumn celebrations ! Anyhow....Jilly and Molly....everytime I look at them I remember our laughter filled afternoon and I am so happy I have such wonderful.....but picky.....daughters.
It's getting dark so early these days.....only 5 o'clock and already getting dark. Earlier in honor of longer nights and cooler days I devised a new soup recipe. Super easy and very delicious.......I know all my kids will love it......curry has always been a family favorite. Therefore, I'll share the recipe here ......for the 6 of you !

Curried Chicken and Rice Soup

In large pot saute 1 large onion, sliced thin, 2 sliced carrots and ,if desired, 3 stalks of celery,chopped, in 3 TBSP butter. Saute about 10 minutes. Add 2-3 TBSP curry powder and 1 TBSP sugar.....cook 1 min longer.
Add 6 cups chicken broth and 1/2 cup Jasmine rice. Salt to taste.
Great served with corn bread with just a bit of curry added.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Fall Birthday Bash !

A wonderful day yesterday up here......the house was full of family and friends. It was sunny and warm......smiles on every one's faces! It was of course.....the Gathering of the Elders....otherwise known as The Fall Birthday Bash. Photos above are of the birthday honorees.....Mom, Denny and Jack.... and the other is of Tess, Boyce and Betty [Boyce's mom]. Betty had flown out from Florida and it was so wonderful to meet her. I understand where Boyce gets his great smile and warm personality......please come again, Betty.....you're part of the family now !
I also want to thank my long time buddy, Belle, for driving up from Berkeley....it was so special to have you here. And thanks also to all of you awesome family members who showed up....you make my life so wonderful.
We had a little after-party going on last night as Jack and Donna spent the night. Late night for us old folks....I think we were up until at least 10:30 ! We all slept in until about 8:00....leisurely ate our waffles and sat around the table until they left about 11:30. A wonderful visit.....as always.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Granny's 89th !

I know, I know......I've been MIA for the last few weeks. Some excuses......nothing I'll go into now , but I'm back now ! Since I last posted Autumn has arrived here at Lupine Hill. Several large storms .....about 5 inches of rain so far this month. The leaves are beginning to turn and my ....and Jenny's....energy level has shot up off the charts !!
Yesterday was my Mom's 89th birthday ! These photos are of her and the new coffeemaker we gave her......it's a way cool addition to her kitchen. Last year we started a tradition of taking a little road trip on or near her birthday. Last year was a wonderful day on the coast......this year , due to time and weather constraints, we headed up tho Chico. Mom has an old friend , from the 50's, who is living up there . We met her up there and had a wonderful lunch and visit. Molly was able to join us since she had parent conferences and so was done teaching early. It was a rainy, windy day , but still a beautiful drive. Anyhow.......Happy Birthday again ,Mom.....you amaze and delight me !
Today was spent turning apples into apple pies.....they're starting to stack up in the freezer. I also found a delicious sounding recipe for a salsa using green tomatoes so I suppose that will be my next project. Oh !......I also decorated for Halloween today ! I love the Halloween decorations.....silly, since it's only Jim and me.....and Jim could care less !.......but, it sure makes me feel good !

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Bubba's Birthday !

Today is Seth's 32nd birthday.......What !......how is that possible !!! Time passes so quickly.....he was just my baby boy not so long ago. This photo was taken when Seth was about 11 or 12 and the bike is one that he built from scratch.....an awesome accomplishment and a labor of love for him. He rode it in many mountain bike races in Idaho until it was unfortunately stolen off our front porch. All grown up now.......a wonderful man who makes me proud every day. Of course, he's off climbing somewhere today so I won't be seeing him , but maybe later this week. I sure can't blame him for enjoying the most out of this beautiful Fall weather.......it is a gorgeous day outside. Anyway......Happy Birthday, Seth..we love you.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

This is the Life !

So this is how the "other half" lives ! Days spent at beautiful vineyards ......days spent with good friends, great food and awesome music ! One could definitely get used to this ! Even though we're back up here today .......oh ,yes, we have it so tough......days like we spent yesterday are good for the spirit ! Ross' band ....The Dry Creek Rounders...played all day yesterday at a gorgeous winery outside of Auburn and my mom and I headed over there to join in the fun. Jim was there when we arrived and had already joined in the band. Molly and a bunch of her friends were there ......along with grapes, brie and crackers and, as I recall ,several bottles of wine were purchased and consumed !
A sharp change in the weather today.......cloudy and cold.......perhaps Fall has arrived. Fitting weather for football viewing.....and there's plenty of that to be had today......but days like yesterday.......I vow to make more time for .

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Bye, Bye Boots.....

Sad news to report ......one of our cats, Boots, disappeared a few days ago. We held out hope for a couple of days that he would resurface, but must conclude now that he's gone. He wasn't sick and had a great appetite so he must have fallen prey to one of the many predators that walk across our property every day. We had Boots for about 14 years and he did his job well as an "outside" cat. He and his sister, Guppie, have kept Lupine Hill free of rodents and snakes ......and all for a little occasional scratch behind the ears.......except when Anders is here......Anders is the family "cat-whisperer" and when he's here the cats bask in his attention. So.......goodbye Mr. Boots....we'll never forget you.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Second Coming !

The raspberries are back !! We had a brief showing early this summer while Jill was here.......barely enough for a hand full each, but the, always awesome, second batch is here now !! I wish we had some restraint so that we could go out and harvest a whole big basket full , but , no , we're kind of eat- them- as- they- show -up kind of people ............and they are delicious warm from the sun and oh so sweet !
The whole garden got a really late start , but everything is pouring in now. In the last couple of days I've been on a canning frenzy.........pickles, pickles and more pickles.......relishes and tomato sauce. I also have several large bags of sliced and frozen peppers in the freezer to use this winter. The apples are starting to trickle in, so soon the freezer will also be stacked with pies and we have almost 4 gallons of dried plums.....otherwise known as prunes.......and that's a whole lot of prunes !!!
The hottest weather of the entire summer continues....highs up here in the nineties. The nights really cool off , making it all bearable. Thunder and lightening predicted for the weekend......scary this time of year when everything is tender dry......we'll hope for wet storms with no dry lightening.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Bad Timing !

Yesterday Jim and I decided it was a good day for a little exploring......these Sierras are full of little roads leading to much of nowhere ! Perfect for us since we seem to prefer nowhere places. We headed up our beloved Hwy. 49......a small two lane road that meanders North to South along the base of the high mountains. We even brought along Jenny .....such was our anticipation of a day of adventure ! Well, we really hadn't expected the Labor Day weekend to have had such a busy consequence.......although the road wasn't busy ...... everywhere we planned on stopping was jammed packed with people ! We finally found a decent spot for a little picnic and a place at least for Jenny to run around. Back in the car to look for a day of excitement! After a while we realized that we had worked our way to being somewhat near Tess and Boyce's place......Stoney Ranch !! Now to get to Stoney Ranch you need to find and follow some pretty obscure gravel roads and I really didn't have much hope for us ! I, of course, really underestimated Jim's navigational skills.....because after only a few wrong turns ..... there we were , parked at the gate of the ranch !! Yaaaa.....let's get out of the car !!!!! We hiked up the beautiful road/driveway to the temporary homestead.....I was sensing on the way up the drive that Tess and Boyce might actually be there......a long shot, but I was wishing. Nope, no one there, but it was a beautiful afternoon and we enjoying exploring around a little ........spent a lot of time being excited for them and a bit of time regretting that we weren't young enough anymore to strike out on such an adventurous way of life.
Before long we were back in the car ......deciding that there were still chores to do back home....so we turned toward Lupine Hill. About that time my phone did it's little text sound.......it was Tess and they had just left Stoney Ranch and were eating in Oroville !! Turns out we had missed them by about a half hour ! Bummer !! They were headed back up to Humboldt.......and we were headed for Chinese food in Auburn ! Sure would have loved to see them.......next time for sure.
Oh ya.......this picture ! I left this twig sticking up between two rocks that they had laid on an outdoor table....a sign we'd been there and that we love and miss them.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Dog Days !

wheww......it's hot today !! As soon as I stepped outside to walk this morning i could tell it was going to be a scorcher. I was actually a little surprised because when Jim left at 4:45 this morning we could tell it had rained during the night......not much I'm sure ,but enough to dampen the driveway. By 8:00 when I made it out to walk all the clouds had cleared and the sun was blazing. Temperature wise it isn't all that hot......about 85 degrees , but this time of year the sun seems so very intense......maybe because it's lower on the horizon ? I don't know , but by the time I got home from seeing my mom in Roseville I was more than ready to head for "Paradise"......otherwise known as the Doughboy ! It felt heavenly and I was able to do the evening chores and cook dinner with no worries ! Sounds like it will be hot through the weekend......maybe a lake or river day in there somewhere, but most likely Jim and I will get busy with one of the dozens of things that need doing around here and .......yep...I'll end up back in "Paradise"!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

August Ritual !

I'm up to my eyeballs in steaming kettles, pungent herbs and shiny glass jars........it's canning time ! Even though we had a late Spring and a mild Summer, the veggies have taken their cue and are rolling in right on schedule. I've already done several batches of dill pickles , a few jars of chutney and today I'm on my second batch of zucchini relish. I'm pretty thankful for the relatively cool weather this year, it makes my job in the kitchen ever so much more pleasant.......in fact , I haven't really been able to work up much of a complaint this Summer.....I know Jim considers himself fortunate !
It hasn't been all work today , however, .......I moved an old lounge chair of my moms out under the large cedar in the front yard......pure heaven ! I took my "lunch break" out there with a book and a large slice of watermelon and I'm thinkin'.....this may become another August ritual !

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Yes to Yarrow !

I have a new favorite flower.....the lowly yarrow. Yarrow is usually seen as "weed like", not too showy, kind of boring........but look what happens when you plant A LOT of yarrow in a barrel ! It has been blooming since June and the deer don't seem interested in it at all . Next year I will double the amount I plant,,,,,it will be everywhere ! By-the-way, I first saw yarrow planted this way at Sundance in Utah. It was quite a few years ago, but I finally got it together !
Tessy was here for a few days and just left evening before last . We had a wonderful visit and even snuck in a day of shopping. We spent one heavenly day at the river with Ross and Molly and had plenty of time for visiting out on the deck.
Yesterday Molly and I headed off to the Nevada Co Fair in Grass Valley. We had a great time checking out the donkeys !! I learned a lot about them and someday still hope to be able to put that knowledge to use. We also watched a dog agility show with Border Collies and some Aussie Shepards......which is what Jenny is. Fascinating and so much fun. Seth was working there so also was able to visit a bit with him.
Headed down to Auburn today with the recycling.....with some of the proceeds I treated myself to In&Out.......in anticipation of that I walked an extra half hour this morning, but I'm sure that hardly covered the burger and fries !

Monday, August 1, 2011

A Slow Withdrawal !

While Jill was here we all were on an In&Out binge......the kids love it , Jill and I love it .......and after all .....there's nothing like it in Norway !! I don't eat there very often during "normal" times and I thought I had eaten my fill for a long time. However.......I met Molly in Auburn today and what were we both dying for ????.........In&Out ! It tasted wonderful and now I think perhaps I can begin the long weaning process and once again choose salad for lunch ! We shall see !!
I got some groceries down in Auburn and it was kind of sad.......I actually like grocery shopping with kids......way more exciting. Molly came on up here , took a dip in the pool and is now out washing her car.
Jim had to work down at his office all weekend so it was pretty quiet around here. Yesterday , however , I took my mom down to mid-town to watch 2 of Ross' bands play at the Press Club. We had a wonderful time ......awesome music and great air conditioning !!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Has It really Been A Month ?

Wow <<<< I've been offline for a long time ! I actually have hardly even turned my computer on since my " Month of Great Happiness " ! I'm referring , of course, to the last month when Jill and her family were here visiting. They just left yesterday and I already miss them so much.......we had such a wonderful time. A week of the time Jilly was here Josh and his family also visited........lots of swim time for all the kids , lots of cold drink and deck time for the adults ! I really slacked in the photo department and ,of course, now I regret it ! I should have documented the wonderful July 4th weekend........the late evening trips down to the city to watch Ross's band........and I certainly should have gotten lots and lots of pics of each and every one of our five beautiful grandchildren !! Should'a, Could'a, Would'a.........oh well......there's always next year !
I did manage to capture on film one very exciting day.......our trip up to the Oroville area to see Tess and Boyce's beautiful 10 acres. The highlight for the kids was learning to ride some small motocross motorcycles that Boyce has. Oh boy .......they will never forget that day.......soooo much fun ! For me the highlight of the day was seeing the beautiful land and to see Tessy so excited and happy with her life......oh, ya.....dinner at Shakeys Pizza made me pretty happy too !!
I also snapped a photo just as we were leaving for the airport yesterday......ohh, I can't wait until we all drive up the driveway next year.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Lumberjacks !

A beautiful Saturday.......sunny and about 75 degrees. I'm also so excited about Jill and family's arrival !! I spent the morning getting the boy's room ready.....a labor of love. Tomorrow we plan on getting the pool up and running.......never a real fun couple of hours , but well worth it .......it will soon be filled with smiling faces !
The big excitement of the day came around noon when the tree trimmers showed up. They're 3 "freelancers" that we've hired before to trim branches and to cut out mistletoe, but today we actually had quite a few trees that we wanted cut down. Some were dead of natural causes and others were ones that were a threat to the house when another big storm comes along. It was sobering this winter to see the damage done by the winds and heavy snows. We were fortunate that we didn't sustain any damage to the house from the falling trees and limbs. The guys just left a little while ago and now the debris cleanup starts.......good news is that we got about 3 cords of wood from the trees . We will have such a warm, cozy house this winter !
Time to start dinner....we're hungry ! Jasmine rice, shrimp and pea pods from the garden.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Deadwood Bonanza !

At last ! The snow has finally melted enough that we were able to drive up to our favorite firewood gathering place. We usually are able to get in around the middle of May.....this year we had snow at our house in the middle of May ! However.....those same storms that brought in all that cold and snow also blew down a lot of big oak trees on Deadwood ridge and so.........we are in firewood heaven !! This will be a year we'll talk about for decades to come .........I can see all the kids rolling their eyes !!!!
All was not actually groovy yesterday . We got a flat tire up there and it was not fun . The jack in the truck is under the back seat and the back seat was under a ton of firewood ! After unloading the wood , retrieving the jack, and putting on the spare tire .......we discovered the spare was flat ! We were miles from anywhere and ,of course, no cell reception. Luckily we discovered that we had our little air compressor with us , so we plugged it in to the lighter and after about 45 minutes we were on our way !! I STRONGLY recommend one of those little compressors for anyone that travels in remote locales !
I met Molly in Auburn today and we did a few errands and enjoyed the air conditioned stores.......it's in the upper 90's today. I dare not complain about the heat ......it hasn't been long enough yet since I was complaining about the cold !

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Heating Up !

Summer is here....at last !! Today for the first time this year the temperature is over 80 up here ! It actually feels good to me ......maybe I can refrain from whining about the heat this year. With this warm day I can actually imagine that it's only 2 weeks until Jill and family are here ...........very exciting !!
Today I drove down to Auburn for a haircut and lots of giggles with Shanti, the woman who cuts my hair. She's a real character and I like her so much. I also really needed the cut and it feels so good to be "light headed" !
I should be out planting or weeding right now ,but it feels so good to be sitting here under the ceiling fan. Just a little while longer.....seems like I've waited a lifetime to be able just to sit in the middle of the afternoon !

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Just Peachy !

Look what decided to make an appearance this year.......the first time in about 12 years !! We planted this beautiful peach colored iris 14 years ago.......it bloomed maybe the first two years and then disappeared for the last 12 . Every year I search for it amongst the other iris , but I'm never able to locate it. All of a sudden......I'm walking down the driveway and there it is .......right were I thought it would be ......and it's blooming it's gorgeous head off ! Worth the wait....it's so delicate and , well , delicious looking. I just hope I'm not 73 the next time it blooms !!
It was actually sunny up here today and warm enough that the clothes dried on the clothesline . Such a contrast from yesterday when I had a blazing fire going all day and the house still never got above 65 degrees inside ! It's supposed to gradually warm up for the rest of the week and we may break 70 up here by the weekend !
My Dad called today about noon and said he wanted to meet for lunch so I drove down to the "Monkey Cat" .......his favorite restaurant in Auburn. We had a wonderful lunch and he absolutely "glowed" ........ he's so excited to get back to his home in Kauai.......he leaves this Monday. He's getting back here for a brief time the end of July.....just in time to catch Jill and the boys before they leave.
Jimmy will be home in about an hour.......his favorite for dinner tonight .....spaghetti. He's a man of simple needs !!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A Wonderful Weekend !

I so enjoyed this weekend.....I was able to spend time with a variety of people who I love. Here's the social timeline : Friday Jack and Donna stopped by on their way home from Nevada. I've been missing them lately.....we hadn't seen them since Xmas ! We had a archery session......they're both very good !.......a lengthy gab session....and a chatty dinner. It was wonderful, as always, to spend time with them. Saturday afternoon I went down and met my mom at Chilis where we split one of our favorite salads. As always a wonderful visit.....there always seem to be lots to catch up on . That evening Jim and I went all the way down to Sacramento for dinner and a movie. We saw "Meek's Crossing" .......an independent film about pioneers lost in the West. We enjoyed it , but it certainly is not a "mainstream" movie. We had dinner at the "Tea Cup" restaurant , one of our favorite downtown Chinese restaurants. It was freezing cold when we got home and snuggled under the down comforter.
Sunday I headed down the hill again to meet my lifelong friend, Belle. Belle and I grew up in the same little culdesac and we were good friends from childhood through High School. We managed to always find a lot of mischief and adventure. Belle lives in Berkeley now and comes to Sacramento about once a month to visit her mom and so we always make it a point to meet . On the way home I stopped in Auburn at the High School where Ross, Molly and gang were all playing baseball. It was pretty hilarious !
Yesterday, Monday, Ross and Molly came up for a Memorial Day barbecue. It was windy and cold so instead of sitting out on the deck soaking up the sun we sat inside by the fire and played some games ! Always a great time to see them , wonderful couple !
Today is my Tessy's birthday. I've tried to call her and text her , but no luck......she's elusive that Tess ! Twenty-nine years old......Happy Birthday, Sweetheart......I love you so very much.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Look What We Found !

While roaming around the front yard a couple of days ago we happened across this never-seen-before iris ......growing in a spot we've never noticed iris growing before ! These photos hardly do it justice.....it's extremely delicate and the most beautiful shade of blue. I hope it comes back to visit next year , but it may take another 15 years before it shows up a again.
Yesterday I drove down to Roseville and met my mom at In-and-Out.......Yummmm. After we were absolutely stuffed we headed over to Lowes and ooohed and aaahed over the flowers. I also actually got some fertilizer for the flowers I already have and maybe........fingers crossed.......found some paint the will look ok in our bathroom. We've been trying to remodel it for well over a year now , but I've never been able to find a color of paint that I like and that will work with all the tile. Maybe, just maybe , the quest is over !
Today I packed up the 4-Runner with cans and bottles to recycle and earned myself $25 for my efforts ! A quick stop at the grocery store then home to work a bit in the garden. It was a beautiful day today, but the forecast calls for rain tomorrow........I don't think I believe it , but we shall see.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

In a Jam !

Woooohoooo........it's a sunny day and even somewhat warm !! I'll never again take -for-granted being able to walk outside with out shivering.......actually .....I'm usually shivering in our house lately too ! Jim's still home enjoying his week long "staycation" , and today we took a break from firewood cutting and spent the day around here , working here and there.
I found time to clean out my car .....it was turning yellow from all the pine pollen and then I got started on one of my favorite "chores" of spring.......making strawberry jam. It's just so beautiful ....ruby red...so easy and I know how wonderful it will taste come the middle of next winter . I barely got started when I ran out of sugar , but I just couldn't stand to get in the car and head to the store sooooo..... tomorrow I'll be off sugar shopping and hopefully squeeze out at least 10 more jars of jam !
Saturday we're all off to neighboring Placerville for a live performance of the awesome Dry Creek Ramblers.......really looking forward to the day.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

I Didn't Really Believe !

Even though I brought some plants inside yesterday , even though I made sure all the car windows were closed.....and even though I thought I was mentally prepared.......I did not really think it was going to snow !!!! As you can see........it did !
I was super sad when I woke up this morning and saw the snow in the trees and my sorrow deepened when I saw all my flowers buried under several inches . I've really been enjoying being outside all day lately , working around with the flowers ....watching the veggies grow and checking out all the hummingbirds. But, now we're back to winter ...sweatpants are back on , wood stove's back burning, even Jenny's curled on a rug inside .
One very bright point of this day however......it's my wonderful grandson Taige's birthday !! Taige is ....and has been from day one ..... a bright, sunny place in the universe. Happy Birthday, Taige.......we love you !

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Save the Flowers !

All the super vulnerable flowers are residing indoors today and probably at least through tomorrow ! All of a sudden it's gotten very cold and windy and the forecast is for snow here !! I'm pretty bummed ......just when I was getting used to the idea of summer ! I really fear for the flowers left outside, but there are just too many to bring them all in.......I just hope they're stout of heart !
Firewood getting season started up here this weekend .........at least in Tahoe National Forest ......which is where we live. We got four loads yesterday and a couple of more today. Many more trips to go as we go through at least 6 cords of wood in a typical winter. I really enjoy firewood trips.....always exciting to see what you'll find and though I walk a lot , I rarely workout my upper body and throwing firewood around does a good job of that !
We'd hoped to go down and watch Ross' band play in midtown tonight , but I think it's just too cold and we're just too tired ! So here on the home front it'll be curry and maybe a movie in Netflix !

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Spring ?........Summer ?

What a crazy year this has been , weather wise ! A ton of snow , lots of cold and now all of a sudden it's 80 degrees ! I'm such a weak woman that I just couldn't resist the local nurseries and their beautiful flowers. I may be very sorry when the next frost hits, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed !
There was a lot to do in the garden this year because of the snow and cold. We lost a lot of plants that had done fine in previous years , but were dead this year. One of the biggest loses was all the lavender we'd planted a couple of years ago. Instead of replanting it I decided to go with something different........wow.....what a surprise !! Anyhow......I'm back to my old whiskey barrel days , although they're now wine barrels.......much more Northern California ! They look very nice and I sure hope the deer leave the geraniums alone that I planted in them ! They also have a lot of yarrow planted in them and I know that the deer really dislike yarrow.
What's strange this year is that all the Spring plants are so late. Usually when I plant for Summer the lilacs and iris are long gone. This year they've just begun. I not complaining.......the yard has never looked more beautiful........flowers everywhere !
Oh ! I forgot to mention........the Kings are staying in Sacramento ! Whoooo- Hoooo!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Dry Creek Rounders !

Friday night was Jim's debut with the Auburn gang's band " Dry Creek Rounders" .......I think it was a whole lot of fun for him and I hope he'll do some more fiddlin' with them soon !! They played at Luna's Cafe in Midtown Sacramento , a very cool, funky little place and I think just about every seat was filled. The band sounded awesome and the crowd was most appreciative . Besides being talented musically , the "boys" in the band are so wonderful and make us old folks feel so welcome hanging out with them.
Today was a beautiful day and Jim and I made the most of it working outside. We accomplished so much and we're tired, but , you know , it's that good kind of tired !
Tomorrow we should hear whether or not the Kings will be staying in Sacramento.....the owners have until 2 PM to make up their minds......stay or go. I'm keeping my fingers crossed !!!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Sherwood Forest.....Hill !

For Jim's birthday this year I bought him a bow and arrow and this past Sunday .....Easter.... we finally got around to trying it out. In this photo I'm doing my best Friar Tuck impression , along with my Robin Hood and , of course, our band of Merry Men........otherwise known as Ross and Molly ! Molly was an awesome shot and won the entire "contest" and Ross and Jim were likewise real sharpshooters.......I, on the other hand, was not able to even hit the target......not once ! Any of you who have ever watched me play Buck Hunter may be quite surprised that I was unable to hit the target.........just kidding ....I am probably the worlds worst shot .....of any weapon known to man !!
In spite of my dismal archery skills we did have a lovely Easter ! Small crowd......Ross, Molly and my mom, but we really enjoyed the day. Of course, lots of food......a few games of Catch Phrase......and plenty of great live music.
Today it is finally sunny ....even a little warm. I bought a few plants, but I don't know if I'm brave enough to plant them yet. We had frost last night and so I think I may wait until this weekend....I can hardly wait !