Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Photography Not My Forte?

I hope that photograpghy isnt a catagory listed under Domestic Goddess, because it would crush me. I can do many things.....but apparently, not this!
I have been getting Ginger ready to go north to smooch up the grands. Its been 32 days since I did so. ( Christmas) I can only go so long ya know? I had a rough day but brought it under control, and made a plan.... Plan A... we shall see. Pitiful I say. I spoke to some friends, and my girls. Hell I even bugged the son in law. I told him that I decided that he should have a superbowl Sunday party. He happily agreed! What a good son in law eh? So once again, I will motor on up, about 900 miles round trip and see all that I can from Auburn to Manteca.... Want me to bring the camera?

Monday, January 26, 2009

Blago Exclusive!

Am I the ONLY one he didn't set up an EXCLUSIVE interview with? I just needed to come on here and YELL that at you peoples. Every station? Now Larry King? Did you hear that he entertained appointing Oprah as Senator???? I am resigned to watch the Simpsons because i have no speakers??

No one asked the only thing that I REALLY want to know???

Mister Blagojevich, What kind of shampoo do you use???? I have no interest in you otherwise.

Pismo Clam- M & M's

G' Morning:)
I think I have talked about our painted clams rocks in Pismo havent I? For every season or holiday they are painetd to depict whats happening in our area. Right now our Monarch Butterflys are here, just hangin out in the trees, on patios, rooftops, local groves. They should be here til the end of February. Come see!
I think our next paint job will be four leaf clover clams... I love the central coast!!
We had quite a busy week end and it looks like the same for this work week.

Happy Birthday to my BFF Ronda who is younger at heart than any birthday could commemorate.
Happy Birthday Woman!!

Marvelous Mondays include.................

* The Pismo Clams
*deep fried clam strips at the Little Hut
*Marshalls who ALWAYS has cute new shoes for me!
*My little lap top not being blown up!
*New quilt patterns to ponder!
*companionship, in many forms

Friday, January 23, 2009

Friday Thoughts

It's raining here today. But the good news that I'm going home to Pismo area to run errands, so rain just isnt so bad. Besides, I hear that we need it. I'll hit the quilt shops and a few stomping grounds, grab some lunch and get a manicure....ahhhhh My diet isnt doing so well even though I'm hungry all the darn time. THAT chaps my hide. I think the stubborn belly fat is hanging on for dear life screaming HELL NO WE WONT GO! Must be the age. I decided that the heavy walking plan isnt a good idea if I'd like to stay out of the hospital. You know what I';d like to try? One of those punching bags that hang from the ceiling. Yeah really! I could kill 2 birds with one stone...(OMG who made that up, horrible!) I could work out anger issues while being in cardio, strength training! 3 birds! The aggressive walking is hell on my knee, so maybe punching wont tax it so bad. I have yet to make the appointment for my new titanium knee, cause frankly, I dont relish the thought of going through all of that pain again! ( I've seriously had it up to THERE with pain.) I have mucho sympathy pains going to Oregon for Rondas knee surgery this week.
I hope to catch a movie this week end, I enjoyed The Curious Case Of Benjamin Buttons, and as I said before, Clints new movie was OKAY, but I expected more. Now I need to see Frost Nixon as I hear that its brilliant. And I guess I should go and see Slumdog eh? I really had no interest until I saw the Golden Globes..hmmmmm
I'm doing fairly well with emotion control. Journal ling everything and I think that SAMe is really helping out. The joint stuff Bioflex, is not! I have done plenty of research on the SAMe and it may just be the ticket as I cannot tolerate prescription meds at all. I'll keep you posted.
I get to order my new eyes today too! My Sarah Palin frames finally made it in, and I for one am excited to try frame less frames! My DG frames will be missed, but maybe I can make a spare pair. I find it so handy dandy to have Dolce & Gabanna as my Dear Gina initials! Woohoo! SCORE. As a side note, I used DG perfumes long before I figured out that we shared the initials:)I think it was when my Walt got me that fabulous DG wallet and I bought peed my pants when making the connection...lol :::I am easily amused:::
On the quilting front, I have 2 to bind and plenty to quilt next week, so I need to go down and not come up!! Enough ramblings for today...non productive blogabout huh? Have a great week end, chat soon:)

**Happy Birthday to my pal Bettyanne** Have a wonderful dinner tonight, and I'm thinking about ya!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Clam Chowder Day

Its going to rain here, so the Soup Nazi comes out in me:) We have now enjoyed over 3 weeks of beautiful sunny and warm weather, so I guess its our turn.
Just one time I'd like to say " No Soup For You!!" But I know that I never would. I keep a beloved sign on my counter that says Be Nice Or Go Home! Its more true to my kitchen, but the soup Nazi makes me laugh. Did you peoples try the Seafood Chowder in December? This is my Old School Clam chowder, and I will put it up against ANY here on the central coast. Maybe cause its the kids favorite too. Maybe like the Poem at the inauguration, its my Praise, Song of the day? Could be its just that song... "Proud". I know! Its just damned good Soup!
*remember* She fed her family, and she feels full.

Clam Chowder

3- 8-ounce bottles clam juice
1 pound russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces(1 large russet)
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
4 slices bacon, chopped small
2 cups chopped onions
1 cup chopped celery with leaves, (about 2 stalks)
½ cup minced carrots
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 bay leaf
1/3 cup all purpose flour
3- 6 1/2-oz cans chopped clams, drained, liquid reserved
3- 6 ½ oz cans minced clams, drained, liquid reserved
1 1/4 cups half and half
1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce(like tabasco) ( I ONLY serve this on the side, for Walt)

Bring bottled clam juice and potatoes to boil in heavy large saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat.Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until bacon begins to brown, about 8 minutes. Add onions, celery, carrot, garlic and bay leaf and sauté until vegetables soften, about 6-8 minutes. Stir in flour and cook 2 minutes (do not allow flour to brown). Gradually whisk in reserved juices from clams. Add potato mixture, clams, half and half. Simmer chowder 10 minutes to blend flavors, stirring frequently. Remove and discard bay leaf. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated. Bring to simmer before serving.) Be mindful of scorching.

Serve with a crusty french bread, or a sour dough bowl!!, OK, and wine. ( what? You didnt think that I would forget that did you?)

My Notes:

You can also get the large tins of clam juice, and/or clams at smart n final, just be sure to get liquid measurements correct. The reasons for the 2 different kinds of clams is basically size and texture in every bite. In testing, using both are best.

DO NOT use a maple bacon, your taste will be “off”, also, be certain to chop finely so that your bite is a clam, not the bacon, and crisp up but not to lose the bacon fat. It’s the best foundation for this soup.

This is even better the day after, so for a holiday you can make it the day before and its out of your hair!
Can be increased several times

Monday, January 19, 2009

Good To Have Gone, and M & M's

OK, I admit it. I was very hesitant about going to Road. I thought that I would be bad company. I know that I'm not myself. I can rarely find my smile. HOW could I go and be Ms Bus Mom?
I was so wrong! ( again) sheesh I hate that. I cant even put into words how good I felt being in a familiar place with familiar peoples.
On the way there it seemed that I was about to win an Oscar for the academy award winning performance I was giving on the bus. Cheery, happy and helpful was I. Part way thru the 6 hour ride it occured to me that it wasnt an act. THIS was who I was. I Am. Geez that felt good. I so smiled inside! SO, I let it happen, and I smiled for the next 48 hours. My face is sore::::snicker:::: I must tell you that it almost felt like a guilty pleasure. Yep yep yep. I felt guilt for feeling good. I pondered that while walking through the rows and rows of drop dead gorgeous quilts. While I chatted with strangers and friends alike. Lynn, so good to see your smiling mug! I'll expect you for dinner soon! Sharon, fun time GF! Thanks for the side trip to M & L !! Renee, Elaine, you sure got it going on! To all of my colleagues, thanks so much for the warm hugs. Man I gotta get out more!
While I purchased supplies for my favorite UNJOB in the world, I also planned a hundred new quilts.. We even sang great songs on the way home about ti! Wow, sitting here typing this I cannot find good enough words to convey the normalness happy place I was at. Can I go do it again?????? I am so glad that I went, and so grateful to have been able to go monetarily speaking, since times are indeed unstable.
Can I go again?????????????????? OK, I'll calm down now.
I must tell you that I think its wierder than wierd that my lil pocket camera failed to work and that I have no photos for you. It was ready to go, and didnt work!!! WHY NOT???? Was it meant to be a quiet memory? ::shaking head::
I bought some yummy threads, a few very cool patterns, and some (Im sure) Ronda approved stencils. No fabrics to speak of, but mucho business cards collected. One delicious new book to learn a new applique technique, and the hopes of getting the author to come hold a class with me and a couple dozen colleagues:) These shows are truly inspiring and I believe them to be invaluable to any quilter to hit at least 2 per year! I am busy trying to plan another for the spring! ( MQX)
My diet went to hell in a hand basket, but hey, I walked at least 10 miles? GRUNT
I am a grateful girl :)

*For Walt helping me to get to road
* For the girls pushing me to actually go
* for that yummy new book!! OMGGGGG
*One more time..............CROC Flops!
* A good battle buddy
* Good Bus Driver, didnt scare me too much:)
*living here

Friday, January 16, 2009

Road Trip

I'm a little excited to see all of the winning quilts tomorrow!!! I am hearing results coming in all over the place! Congratulations to all the winners! I will report on THAT later! Today I am busy preparing to make 40 quilters on a bus..... HAPPY? I've got their games, prizes, water bottles, and goodie bags. I am armed and dangerous, all I need is charm eh? Man I sure hope I don't lose anyone. Not that they would care being left at ROAD huh!
My week has been good. I am so sore that I dont want to discuss that. Suffice to say that I did O.K. Not certain if I can WALK today at all though...LOL
I feel bad posting warm pictures when you are all freezing out there. Walts says it warms you all up for a few minutes... is this true? The good thing about the walk is people watching. I get the biggest kick out of pondering peoples. Where do they hail from? Are they East of I-5? Why are they walking over here? Why in the world would they walk an ugly dog? Oh sorry... bad girl.
I would love to go on these walks with Rudy. I really would. He would have a blast people watching with me. When we were RV-ers, he was the residant screen porch beach bather spotter. Wolf whistling at all the girls. He was safe and happy in his little patio. If he was on my shoulder I'm sure that wouldnt be the case. I would spend all of my time stooping to pick him up off of the ground. Anything at all freaks him out! You should see the show when the broom comes out! When I bring out the vacuum I actually have to go to him, have an "it's ok" chat before I turn it on. He STILL sits atop his perch and shivers while I'm working. When I finish, he makes a whistling relief and starts to sing Pop goes the weasal.. Only nowadays he changed it up to the same tune, only says...." Papas con Chorizo". My Mother did that. She told him thats how she sung it as a child, so of course, he picked it up... along with Hey Ruth! He really is a good pal.
In a few years, when we are settled again, I'd like to add another feathered friend to our family. A Mini Macaw. Maybe he/she would like to roam with me. Ginger is my walker for now, and she is one nutbar of a dog. She wants to visit everyone and everything. She chest bumps me when she sees the lead come off the hall tree. If I had her energy I could walk anywhere! If she could speak like Rudy does, she would be a fast talking happy ass chatter.
Now that I have rambled through my breakfast, about I dunno what... I should go start my roadtrip bus list. Its goodie bag time! Have a great week end, I know I will be in 7th heaven at Road2Ca! Hey Sheena! You should be here!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Morro Walk

Yes , I did the 2 miles ( in 45) I feel like crap! Shoulder blades, knee, owwwwwwwwwwwww But, it was gorgeous, 80 degrees, ad I did it.. so thats what counts.. Enjoy the walk................
Tracy and Gracie

SurfersOtters at at playA Clam Digger?EEL catch of the dayA NON Surfer


Forget Jello Legs, how about shoulder, hip, knee, $$$ pain? So maybe it was a little too ambitious a start? It wasnt meant to be a tough walk, I am just typically a brisk walker. Walt is always telling me to slow down, but I just go places quickly? Its probobly little girl syndrome. Thats it.. little legs, short strides, move fast. I used a calorie counter that 2L sent on, and I am surprised that I was still at 1300 calories, BEFORE 2 glasses of wine! CHIT! Now what?
I woke up at 5:15, moaning. Yep yep yep.. stuck to the pillow, stoved up to beat all from my neck all the way down. How in the heck will I do it again today? The top of my morning list says.... ADVILL, HOT SHOWER. Im working on quilt bus games, so I will make this short. Maybe IF I make that walk I'll have new pictures for you. Glad everyone is enjoying, thanks for the extra emails stating so! I just love this lil Olympus pocket camera! I need a new one, updated, and sandless. BBL! Wish me luck... or... just say GO GIRL GO?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Cambria Cliff Walk

Log me in for 2 miles!!! It took me 45 minutes but hey, I did it! I'll try and shave that down it at least a 15 minute mile soon. Its a beautiful walk if you;re in the area. I walked with much wildlife at my side. Blue Heron, sea Otters,deer, squirrels, BIG squirrels just enjoying the view while nibbling. Ginger thought she was hot stuff for the first mile pulling me along. Mile 2 on the way back, she thought it might be a good idea to heel. I got a few shots for you and hope that they arent blurry cause I didnt stop for fear I'd jello leg to the ground!
I think that we truly live in the most glorious place on the planet. It was great to ponder a great many things while pounding the trail. If I can walk tomorrow, I'll do it again here near home, and try to catch some dolphins or whales for ya:):::maybe::::

My Favorite Lil Pasta Dish

Mornin... Well... I didn’t walk last evening:( I did well all friggin day on foods until... I made a Ahi tuna steak, split it with walt.. and then I made this little pasta dish with red peppers and garlic? I portioned out 1/2 cup, ate it.. then went back for another cup ful!!! I think I better not cook anymore:(( damn it.
I drank a slimfast shake, and my coffee.. Im going for a Cliffwalk in a bit with Ginger. I ll wrap my knee and Pray that I don’t overeat at lunch at the bar and grill a friend and I are meeting at. THIS isn’t easy, not by a long shot, but I think I better quit weighing every morning.. its making me mental!!! I need a personal trainer too!!!

Heres the recipe for you, it hails from my friend Blima who does this a bit differently than I do. You can really experiment with different combinations of vegetables. My favorite posted below. Admittedly, she sends me this bag from Canada, ( this is my last one Blim, send!!!) I have been told it CAN be found here, but I havent yet and I do look everywhere!
I shouldnt make this anymore as it is hazardous to my health! I'm so happy to have a gas stove this week! Wow!
1 bag pasta ( Israeli Couscous)
1 Tblsp Olive Oil
1 small red onion, chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
1 red bell pepper, cut into slim strips
1 Tblsp chopped Italian Parsley
2 cups HOT chicken broth
Salt & Pepper to taste
Saute onion and garlic in olive oil until golden brown. Add Pasta and red pepper and stir until brown. ( not dark). Add parsley and broth, cover and simmer 10 minutes.
*Again, experiment with favorite vegetables, I have done with tomato and zucchini, mushrooms, u name it....this is a fabulous dish!
High in protein, and unfortunately, carbs. cholestrol free, fat free, sodium free too! ( til I screw it up with my stuff eh?)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Some Sun Pondering

I wonder if I suffer from SADD. That seasonal affliction? No really....listen.... Putting all of life's changes, and my own personal grief ride aside. Morro Bay, (read MORBID) is naturally a very grey beachy, sun deprived kind of bedroom/retirement community. BUT, for the past few weeks, and especially the past few days, we are having some sort of record breaking heat wave! Sun all afternoon, and temps in the 70/80's. NOW..... Notice the blog posts. Despite all of the crap STILL going on she manages to smile through it? Add Vitamin D deficiency to the grief ride, then perked up by a few weeks of sunshine?HMMMMMMMM I can also add Walt into the equation and either call it the same, or sympathy pains. ( happy wife is a happy life)
From May to January its been drippy, dark, depressingly NOT typical California weather that I am accustomed to. Its a mind blower, and I am pondering it today. I will return to Pismo for the day for errand running and quilt shop stop. I'm liking that. Theres even MORE sunshine there! I'm gonna drop the top....Maybe I will walk the ole beach! We went on a walk last evening, uphill, bad knee and all. Painful, and worth it. I have GOT to get into ortho soon. GRUNT
I'll try and post some pics tonight, cause I see that the blog is lagging in that department:)
On another note, have you caught the premier of 24?? WOW!!!
Tonight is American Idle kick off, come over, lets have an AI party. We can laugh and groan a lot.
Geez! I just heard todays weather report! 83 today! OMG!! My Jamie would be in the water for sure!

Monday, January 12, 2009

The List of All Lists!

Ever try to inventory everything that is plugged into your home? Get model numbers , replacement costs? I only finished 3 rooms today! This is unbelievable for sure. The crappyier news is how much they will depreciate my stuff! And............... WHY didnt I keep receipts!!!!! Lesson Learned.
Rudy is doing better and has stopped plucking arbitrarily. He has even spoken a few times, nothing happy schmappy as usual, but he is coming around. Me? Well, I couldnt even blow dry my hair! Its just freaky trying to figure out how we lived without power, let alone the internet! I am so very thankful for a coffeemaker and ONE computer up and running! A persons got to know their limitations eh?
I have done well with making "myself" a priority today too. Altho... it is wine 30... wish me luck. I guess I just wanted to switch from the best buy site to the blogger site and Kvetch a bit... thanks::Wink::

New Normals and M & M's

Is this morning ritual of the new normal for the big FIFTY decade?

I remember the good ole days of just gemme cooffee and nobody gets hurt!

Now.... I have to put MEDS on my daily list! Ya got your BP, hormones, cranberry, knee juice, SamE to juice up my mood, and not pictured here is a Acai Berry bottle in the fridge I get to SHOOT an ounce a day of. PFFT... I just want my coffee thanks. I actually must put this mess on my list to remember it!

I am busy creating new normals. I joined a support group to lose weight because I refuse to add one more pill to this daily regimen above. My poor Walt has a dresser full of vitamins, nutrients and supplements to take daily, and frankly, its difficult for the both of us! ( yeh, and they stink too) I am in hopes that my group of BFF's can help keep me on guard, cause whats the goal here peoples?? Dont let Walts weight pass me the hell up! ( the other way )

Its true. I have to get a handle on myself, and for the first time in my young life, Im not sure how to go about that, but darned if I dont try everyday. I pray that I never "LOSE" that part of my character. Today is no different.

Made my list, checking it twice. PG & E is going to get THEIR list too.. I didnt even have an alarm clock this morning! We used our cell phones! One iron of 2 was sparred, so that helped? ::Thank God my coffeemaker works!!! Its just amazing to me how difficult it must have been with no electricity. I dont understand how some things were ok, and others just blown up? Anyone know a good deal on a bazillion surge protectors?

Have a Marvelous Monday, and if anyone has any ideas for games for my quilter bus girls, send em on! LYG!

*cell phone alarm clocks!

*The lone laptop

*Getting out last evening to see Gran Torino ( Go Clint!!) It was very good, but I had bigger expectations so I was a little bummed.

*70 degree afternoons! ::ducking::

*Candles all over, when I needed them

*Marshalls, man I love to hunt a good buy!

*Gas stoves

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Life Is A Bowl Of Cherries!

Cause I said so, and I have a quilt the prove it. GRUNT.

This is for my KareBear, however I bet a quarter that Aviana is wrapped in it this week end as she is very sick. Her Christmastime cold turned into pnuemonia, and she is on breathing treatments at home. We talk often, thru her nonni's latest crisis, and today she sounds perkier. Get well Lovee....

Here We Go Again

They say that lightning never strikes twice in the same place. Who said it? I need to pay them a visit and Bop em on da head! Now, during my 3 days of absolute insanity trying not to go postal on the Charter cable company, it occurred to me.. well it didnt really occur to me, Walt said it... There are 2 ways of looking at this. One is OMG it happened again and we are so screwed... OR: Dude, Happy 2009! We get alot of new appliances, electronics, and maybe move!!! I think I will run with the latter, thanks.
Remember the cable co surfer dude guy coming over to change out our tv box and blowing up the entire office a couple months ago? Well, they were responsible enough to reimburse us for the equipment lost and with the exception of all of the footwork, life went on and I came out with a new Smokin Hot PC. We were so very grateful that the Gammil didnt go down, or anything else. When did that get hooked up? Just a few days ago eh? Ironic.
Scheduled to replace the box again on Friday, I was a bit nervous when the cable dude appeared...longish hair, 20 something, goofy grin. ( I was having a flashback.) I warned him as he began to unplug things. I told him the whole story while I calmly read posts on MQR. He sorta laughed me off like I didnt know what the heck I was talking about. He assured me that he was a professional and knew exactly what he was doing. He ran downstairs to check his splitter. I warned again. Now why the heck I didnt warn MYSELF and go unplug the entire house is beyond me. Blind faith in the fact that lightning really doesnt strike twice in the same place? Hmmm
I smelled it. I saw flickers. I heard the dishwasher growling. Rudy flung himself to the floor in instinctual bird fear. I leaped from the chair and unplugged my new computer as I dialed my own personal 911 number.. (Walt) I ran to the deck to see Dan Dan the blow up man in his truck on his phone as well. I eves dropped enough to hear that he indeed was shocked and sparks were flying all over the studio side of our home. OMG He came up eventually and explained that it wasnt his fault, our home must not be properly grounded. WHERE have I heard that before? I swear I cant believe I didnt hurt the poor boy. I wanted to. I really did. I pleaded with him to FIX what he had done and he told me it wasnt his field. OMFG ITS GROUND HOG DAY AT G's HOUSE!!!!As the scared kid called the TEAM out, I was busy assessing the damages. So far, dozens of light bulbs exploded, my microwave, fridge and bedroom lights were out. The entertainment center, out. I was way too afraid to go downstairs to check on Greta, I feared the worst, and to be learned the next day, my fears were correct.
Within an hour the Calvary appeared. Walt, our electrician, and 5 more cable dudes. Not a one of them could figure out what was going on. All of them tracking down lines for shortages, furniture all over the place, Broken glass... and me. A knock on the door proved to be the guy who saved the day. PGE guy, Joe. I like Joe. I didnt at first, but I warmed up to him hours later. As joe entered our home he announced that he was condemning the building. Walt yelled to me up top to go get emergency supplies, STAT. Condemned Im yelling? While I was at Rite Aid with a grocery cart full of flashlights, candles and camping lanterns, the TEAM at home was working hard to figure out the mess. That means everyone was scratching things while looking at Joe on a 100 foot pole in the middle of the night. Long story, less long, Joe found the problem was corrosion causing current to travel back into our ground, producing electricity 24/7 into anywhere it could travel. Even water. (OMG no wonder the bills were through the roof!!!) He cleaned it all up during the night, restored our power, gave us claim forms and told us to fill out as many as we needed, and dont forget the hired electricians fees, as PGE was indeed at fault here. Hows that for a full moon? More importantly, Dont I owe the poor cable guy a huge apology for "wanting" to rip his head off and store it in the fridge! We thanked Joe profusely, asked Dan for forgiveness, and began the clean up. Committee only of 2. Me & Walt, a broom, clorox wipes, and a claim form.
It isnt pretty, and if I kept going I think I might freak out again. I will say that I am now convinced that we do not belong here. My fears are now peeked. I'm still hopeful... it very well may have been a good thing...we shall see. In the meantime... I'm very happy that microwaves really arent that necessary to me. Oh yes, and that we havent been electricuted, blown up, or spontaniously combusted in the 8 months that we have been here.
Tomorrow I shall tell you about my 50/50 journey... cause I'm all about journeys these days.

Porcini Pot Roast- Lets call it Live-it

OK, so it really isnt so diety, especially when you set it atop some creamy Yukon Gold smashed potatos, but... I feel like cooking...grunt. I will portion control myself, promise.

Do you love the “nutty” flavor that mushrooms give to us? I do! This is the perfect Sunday dinner...I’m sending brain waves, see if THE FAM shows up:)


1 cup chicken or beef broth
1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms ( thanks Art)
1 4-5 pound boneless beef chuck roast, trimmed
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 celery stalks with some leaves, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
3 garlic cloves, smashed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram
1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, drained ( use fresh when in season)
1 cup dry red wine

Preheat oven to 300°F. Bring broth to simmer in saucepan. Remove from heat; add mushrooms, cover, and let stand until soft, about 15 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer mushrooms to cutting board. Chop coarsely. Reserve mushrooms and broth separately.
Sprinkle beef with salt and pepper. Heat oil in heavy large ovenproof pot over medium-high heat. Add beef and cook until brown on all sides, about 15 minutes total. Transfer beef to large plate. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon drippings from pot. Place pot over medium heat. Add onion and celery. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and sauté until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Add garlic, chopped marjoram, and reserved porcini mushrooms; sauté 1 minute. Using hands, crush tomatoes, 1 at a time, into pot. Cook 3 minutes, stirring frequently and scraping up browned bits from bottom of pot. Add wine; boil 5 minutes. ( reduce) Add reserved mushroom broth, leaving any sediment behind. Boil 5 minutes longer.
Return beef and any accumulated juices to pot. Cover; transfer to oven. Cook 1 1/2 hour. Turn beef and continue cooking until tender, about 1 1/2 hours longer.

Transfer beef to cutting board; tent with foil. Spoon fat from surface of juices in pot. Bring juices to boil; cook until liquid is reduced to 4 cups, about 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Cut beef into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Transfer to platter. Spoon juices over, serve.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Happy Birthday Sissy!

Yep, its her birthday today! She is blog challenged, or just doesnt wish to enter the blog world..lol But sometimes I can get her to come check us all out. She is an amazing sister indeed, who loves to laugh, love, and ok... play in the dirt gardening. ( grunt) This we do not have in common. However, in fairness, she doesnt sew! So we are a good team. Her home is in Auburn, CA. We dont get to hang out as much as we would like to. I tell her to move to the coast, she tells me to come pick a mountain top. Hmmmmm. Sisters?

Happy Birthday Kelly, we love you!

I am looking for a picture.. but frankly, Im lucky to have internet.. YEP YEP YEP Cable compay was here last night and blew us up again:( More on that later, right now Im trying to clean the mess, and NOT eat!!

Until I find a pic of sis, just pretend to see me 6 years younger, 30 lbs lighter, oh, and prettier too, and you will see my sissy!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Road To California

Bus trip! Want to come along? I flat out forgot, imagine that? I am once again the Bus Mama. That just means I talk your ear off, feed you, and corral you at various times. ::color me Sheppard extrordinaire::: ( or is that a cattle driving sheep dog?)
The LQS owner gave me a jingle to discuss snacks, games and rosters.. and I stood there on the other end of the phone, just incredulous as to what she was saying. Then it HIT me. RUT RO. So I guess I need to get a plan! January 17th-18, an overnight stay, come one come all. The bus isnt full yet, so call The Quilt Attic in Arroyo Grande and sign up!Its relatively inexpensive, and ya get cheap entertainment?::that would be me:::
I haven't a clue yet what I'm doing for games, but I am making a thread purchasing list for me? LOL. No kidding, it should do me good to get out and mingle with my Croc sporting, quilt show gal pals. Oh wait.. I don't know any of em yet? :::YET:::
If you come, I'll know YOU? How about it June? Dianah? BA? Ronda, book it!( I promise not to throw anything down any stairs if you come)
Hey! Heres a bonus! The Elephant Seals are home! You can meander up the coast and see!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Suffering a Loss

Of my Son.
Until now, I thought that is what I have been enduring. I was wrong. ( Jeez I hate it when Im wrong) It's really bigger than that. How in the heck can THAT be?
Loss can come in many forms don't you agree? Loss of a job, or in my case, business. Loss of a home, loss of a relationship. Loss of familiarity...ahhhhhh. Loss of any material items that one is attached to.Loss of body parts, not to exclude body fat! Yep, its a loss too! Maybe not one you'd like to re-find, but its a big change in your life none the less.. that fat was a part of you for many many years. Your hair, eyesight or hearing?Your retirement monies, savings account? How about loss of a pet? My Mom is grieving still over her Lucy. Loss, I think is a HUGE issue in any form, separated only by degree. That degree is only measured by the owner of said loss. Think about it. What do you feel when you lose your keys? Seems trivial to say, but all you have to do is keep multiplying that naked feeling to the degree in which the loss is. Now we, as mothers all agree that the height of loss is to lose your child....to anything.This is the unnatural truth. Period. When you break that all the way down, we suffer loss all of the time, it causes crumbling in your life. Many losses you can recover, some you cant, no matter what you do. So then what? Find what you can, mourn what you cannot? Grunt. Some problems aren't meant to be solved. I have a headache. I am suffering loss-es. I miss my son. I miss many things.I'm working it out, picking up the pieces I can find.
PS: man! why cant I just lose body fat?????

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Outlook Issues

If you will, please take a minute to drop me an email so that I will HAVE your email as mine seem to be missing in PST files of Outlook that I cant access:( I'm sure its user error, but its frustrating, so send me a YOU WHOOOO Ok?
Thanks You!

And PS: WHY arent any of you peoples commenting these days??? Jeez oh criminy I hope I am not depressing you :(

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Embracing Uncertainty

So that way, no matter the outcome, it cant hurt me... cause I already accepted it.
Pondering if I should buy into this mantra. I vaguely recall the positive energy that I have always used in the past and seek it out on a daily basis. I just cant seem to locate the damn thing.
There are so many more possible changes under foot, that the uncertainty is at an all time high level. I sometimes feel like I'm walking on eggs for the last 7 days of 2009. No really... I have high hopes, good attitude, but man oh man am I touching each moment softly. I still have the wierd feeling of wtf will happen next. I still feel like the ugly monster is fighting with an ugly monster! I want to be myself, but frankly, my SELF is scary at times! Do you remember the line in the movie Steel Magnolias where Sally field has an angry meltdown in the cemetery with her friends after having lost her precious daughter? I wonder when I wont be pissed off anymore.

Life right now needs to be easier for me. I guess I just need it. A smoother ride. Peaceful, and tender. I am trying to give it to myself on a minute by minute basis. Why? Because I wish to succeed, be whole, be happy. I am grateful that I even KNOW what it is that I need. One of the many perks that come with being middle aged. Thats right, I said MIDDLE.

So my friends I am off to embrass the uncertainty of the healing of my blephritus eyes, as I tenderly scrub them. Then I'll wrap my jacked up knee, for which I know not when the new titanium will be put in. I'll go down the stairs to work and peacefully ponder the home, job, relationship uncertainties...Kind of makes me laugh thinking how will I love up all of these...lol But I shall try! I need to go find this fabric too! Looks like a new quilt to me????

Monday, January 5, 2009

A New List!!!

I am playing that song about a gazillion time a day... "What Have You Done Today To Make you Feel Proud?" ( see earlier post) So I decided to write them down. ( cause I write, therefore I am) Now I know what you're thinking... Just what she needed, another list right? Well??? If it works??? WHATEVER WORKs!!! (work with me people) I looked at the list, and said to myself.. "those arent much of an accomplishment G".. and then it HIT ME. I FINISHED THE LIST WHICH IN TURN CREATED A NEW LIST! yep yep yep.... my regular TO DO list got finished, checked alllll over the place, so this means what? Finishing a list, made me feel proud! ( Im such a simple minded goof these days eh) But it worked!!! I bounced merrily down the stairs singing What have you done today to make you feel proud...lalalallalalalala
Now admittedly, I havent made dinner yet.. but I'm on it.. and I also added a few things like picking up my new PC at costco:::wink:::

First Marvelous Monday In 09

Isnt it? :::thinkin:::
OK, I'm armed with an MM list, along with a feel proud list... and the infamous TO DO list. Most wouldnt believe this site... Blima would laugh at me, and tell me to move my ass.... Heather would marvel at the co ordinated ink pen colors. Walt would have recommended an EXCEL sheet for the job. Grunt. A bit ambitious, but I am woman, hear me snore. Actually, I need a huge list pad entitled 2009 will be fine!
On the work front, its slim pickens, but my own fault so I must begin again. I have 10, count em 10 quilt shop samples to quilt for the month, and thats all.
On the new computer front..... I took back the Smokin hot giant screen HP and we shopped for a nice notebook that would fit the bill for travel and desk top. NO LUCK, so I am now PC less... THAT is really a bummer. ( if youre me). Vista isnt a fun change.. I want XP back and cant have that either. Often times of late I really feel like stomping my foot for the things that I cannot change... an operating sytem being the most ridiculous of all.. but it adds up eh? I never thought I was like this.. but I think me and "change" werent meant for each other.
On the Grand front, I MISS EM!!! I need to go.. I just need to get i the car and go, but I dont think I can make it up there until later in the month. SO girls send pictures!!
We did see a couple shows this holiday... The day the earth stood still re make, ( dont waste your money) And Benjamin Button... really interestingly cool concept, we enjoyed it. Walt likened it to a backward forrest gump.
Have a great Monday, I'm off to start mine:)
I long to accomplish a great and noble task; but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble. - Helen Keller

* New year beginnings
* computer choices
* sunshine
*photograph and memories
*Gingers unconditional love

Sunday, January 4, 2009

What Have You Done Today:::edited::::

To make you feel proud?

Yep, I hijacked it... but I was standing in the kitchen, cookie in mouth, feeling like crap.. and I heard this song, and of course, the tears began. ( because thats how I roll these days?) There isnt a soul on earth that doesnt wish to be proud of themselves each and everyday. So just like happines is a choice, so is the act of doing something to be proud of yourself. :::hmmm, hand in hand maybe?::::

It's easy enough to be proud of those that you love, not so all of the time with ones self eh? I can rattle off an entire list of those people, those triumphs in others I would beam about, but when pondering myself, not so easy these days. MY BAD.I've learned that it much easier to say, than to do. MUCH hard work.
Life's messy, clean it up. I'm on it.

ANSWER: I made this soup and packaged it up for neighbors and friends, even if they arent here. It's a feel good Zoupa, and its good for you too. I once lost a lot of freaking weight eating just this soup, Genoa french bread, and wine:) ( Leave out cheese, of course) Thinking about tomorrow.. thanks for thinking with me:)

Minestrone Rose

6 slices bacon chopped
1 tblsp crushed garlic
1 potato chopped
2 cup spinach chopped
½ head chopped cabbage
1 cup shell pasta
1 can kidney beans
½ tblsp oregano
1 bay leaf
1 onion chopped
½ c diced carrot
½ c diced celery
1 sliced zuccini
1 can green beans
½ tblsp basil
½ tblsp cumin
½ tblsp pepper
salt to taste
1 pound diced tomato
1 gallon beef stock
Fresh shredded parm cheese

In a 7 quart pot fry bacon until crisp, remove and reserve.
Fry onion and garlic in bacon fat until tender, scraping the pot. Return bacon to pot , add seasonings and stock. Heat to boiling and add all vegetables simmer 45 min, add pasta, simmer 15 min longer.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year Chant With Me

2009 will be fine... 2009 will be mighty fine... I'm doing it...I'll be fine in 09!!!! grunt.
Today was ok, made some calls, organized some things in the shop. I made Morracan Lamb Chops for dinner, although I must say that cooking is slim pickens these days. 2 lamb chop go a LONG way!
Aviana called on her way home from a day trip, to tell me that she ate crab num nums with butter and lemon, and it winked at her....., went down a crooked street, and was afraid of the big bridge. I laughed and said "Oh you are in San Francisco huh?" She was excited and tired. I want to see her and Heather so we may just jump in the car and motor on down to do just that tomorrow. (film at 11:00)
I was fortunate enough to recieve NOT the SHAM WOW that I asked for for Christmas, but instead a beautiful smokin hot new computer!:::You DO remember the cable blow up story right?::: So I have been busy learning the VISTA ropes. The moniter is 24 inches which is larger than our bedroom TV, and I am Sham Wow'd just looking at it! ::: I think I will order the shamwow and get it out of my system::::
I hope you all got some cool surprises for your Christmas, and are enjoying the new year too. I am in hopes of stability, security, smiles, serenity, and a HUGE list I have in the making over there......................
chat soon, LYG

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