Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Making Ice Cream on a diet day is like....


Let us say it is like washing windows or your car, when it is raining!  Not a good idea.  But, when the peaches are ripe, the peaches are ripe!  Get to it.



What about the diet day you might wonder?  Well, in an effort to slow down the "muffin top" an  unanimous decision was made, let's try the Five - Two Diet plan.  A good idea we thought, as the one who loves to cook is cooking too much:-)  That one is moi!



Therefore, while I was trying to fill the freezer with Peach Ice Cream ... batch after batch... unable to lick a dribble, a paddle or a spatula, I felt like I was extremely tough!  And strong!  I was!



Yes, that peach tree in Maria's garden produced another bumper crop.  Last year not so much.  She has been busy making jam and peach butter along with a load or two of the frozen treat mentioned above. Personally I stuck to the sinful stuff the photographer loves so much.  No wonder the waistline expands.



Perhaps it is a GOOD thing that I don't have more freezer space?
Now, we are in for a period of wonderful produce from that same garden.



Garbo and I were there for a play date with Buddie and Gemma the other day and brought home green beans, fresh corn on the cob, and cantaloupe juicy and sweet.  There have been  many variations on zucchini lately as well.  Zucchini Lasagna, Zucchini Gratin, Grilled Zucchini, not forgetting a quite heavenly Zucchini Chocolate Chip Bread, to mention just a few things.



If one needs to walk for five minutes to burn up the calories in one wedge of cantaloupe, I wonder how long a walk would be required for a slice of that chocolate chip bread.  On second thought no, I don't think I want to know.



It has been a busy time lately.  The living room has been rearranged.  Always fun with a bit of change.
The Seattle branch of our family was here for a weekend visit.  Zucchini Boats were on the menu and I had some help in the kitchen.  The "Zucchini Growers" joined us for dinner and we had lively conversations about some of the current top topics in the news.  The photographer was not present as he had to work, but that did not stop us (at least not me) from some wild discussion.  Here, in America, other than news of the Israeli Palestinian Gaza Iraq Afghanistan Syrian Russian Crimean Ukrainian conflicts, the list is so long, yet the now BIG news story here  is about a few thousand children at the Mexican border sent here illegally by their families most likely to save their lives, in an effort to get them away from the violence in their home countries such as El Salvador, Guatemala .... how much they cost to house and feed and we must send them BACK!



The fact that Europe is coping with "boatloads" of people every day, arriving from Israel Palestine Gaza Iraq Afghanistan Syria and AFRICA among other places is, I fear, not something people here are so aware of.  So to me, these few kids at the border of Mexico creating such outrage seems odd. Ideally yes of course,  every refugee should arrive legally... but if you are fleeing for your life,  you are fleeing for your life and it might not be possible to get the correct paperwork together.



Watching the news from Sweden yesterday via SVT Play, there are  now busses filled with refugees from Syria, arriving in the province of  Dalarna (Dalecarlia).



During our dinner here there was also talk about the minimum wage, much lower here in the US than in many of the counties in wester Europe.  We touched on an article "The Pitch Forks Are Coming" dealing with the consequence of the wealthy having so MUCH and so many others  so little.  Birth control being denied women via private medical insurance these days, while Viagra for men is quite OK.



These were our topics of conversation.  It was wild and woolly and fun!  The Peach Ice Cream almost melted before it was on the desert plate next to the Peach Cobbler.



I wonder what hot button items we can cover during our next gathering?  I want to know  where the Tomato Worm comes from and how on earth  I  can send those back!  Maybe that is a subject of "slower" or lower concern.  Betting we can find something to talk about to heat things up!

 ..and a few pictures of Garbo and her friend Love at the Morgan Hill Dog Park....

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Hollister July 4, 2014 Annual Motorcycle Rally

It was a great fun time for all.

Telling war stories.

Cruiser Bikes

Dressing up.
Bands of all ages playing to the crowds and having a great time.  I loved it.




The usual suspects riding together and having a great time.



Promoting the Indian Motorcycle.

Downtown Hollister












I loved this band the best.  They were great and the crowd loved them.





Nice Cruiser Bike




We will be back next year.

Garbo is a BIG GIRL now


turned one year old the 7th of July!  She is busy


and social,


charming


and silly!


Loves people and dogs... cats and kids!
We adore her!

Happy Birthday to Garbo!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Bourbon Whiskey in a Glass


It is remarkable how some of the things we have around us, items we look at every day, things we touch and use, wash and put away, how much feeling there is in them.  How many deep feelings these items can convey.  Various dishes I prepare can have the same effect, even preparing a certain food or food items can dredge up  the most tender or memorable moments.

The photographer received a hand blown glass, created in a small glassworks called Ulva Kvarn outside the city of Uppsala in Sweden, several years back.  A gift from Monica and Richard, my "big" sister and her husband.



The photographer and Richard have always had a very special relationship.  A kindred kind.  An easy and uncomplicated friendship.  They laugh together, a lot.

 It is unclear to me if the glass is of special importance due to the relationship or because of the gift giving gesture.  Probably both.  This glass comes out of  the cabinet on special occasions.  On an evening when the photographer feels he deserves an extra treat.  Or a special reward.  Sometimes because he is contemplative.  This glass is never used without  references of the two persons who sent it, always with  a bit of special emphasis on Richard.  This glass means a lot.



Sometimes it contains some very good gin, but more often a wee dram of Bourbon or two.

A couple of weeks ago, a late afternoon, that glass was filled.  The photographer snapped a picture, printed a card, gave it to me and asked me to send it off to the gift givers.  I am the one who enjoys sending cards with hand written notes, far and near, after all.....  The photographer takes pictures, prints cards for me to use, then I spread them all over the globe.  This particular card is still here!  Before it gets stashed away, never to be found again, I better get on the stick!



There are  many items here, that when used set off a string of thoughts, triggers memories and makes us think of various people, reflecting on, not only the past, but all sorts of  situations.

Treasures!  Our treasures!  Not because of monetary value..... but worth their weight in gold.
With Mid Summer Celebration upon us, perhaps that glass will be used this weekend again, lifted in honor of this years longest day and shortest night.... I will be happy to sip some wine, using one of my Mothers glasses.



There will be herring, potatoes with dill, eggs, smoked salmon and such...

 Cheers!:-)

..and oh yes, I better get on, writing a note on that card!