Saturday, May 16, 2015


Linnea is far right.

The parents of Linnea set out this morning driving across country to Providence, Rhode Island.  Linnea, our granddaughter, is graduating from Johnson & Wales University with a degree in culinary  arts and food science.

Big brother holding Linnea

For me it is impossible not to look back!

We, the photographer and I, will do our best to care for the dogs, the horse and the homestead in their  absence.  Wishing the entire time that we too could be there to witness the event.  However, we will follow the trip, and the special day in pictures and stories, texts and phone conversations.

Now contemplating, remembering and reflecting on a bright young life that seemingly just started "yesterday!"

For us, the old guard, time seems to pass with lightening speed.  A feeling most likely not shared with our third generation.

From the very moment this child was born there was a special sensibility about her.  A light!  A joy! A frilliness!  She revelled in pinks and purples from the get go, much to her a bit "tomboyish"  Mother's consternation!  She loved animals from the start!  Liking nothing more than horseback riding from the age of one!  Dogs, cats, calfs and goats, not forgetting feathered friends and of course people.

Now she is all grown up!

Ready to take on the world!

She is a "cowgirl", a mixologist, a barista, a world traveller, a great friend, a sister,  a cousin, a "foodie", an agility competitor,  she is talented,  beautiful, a girlfriend and a delight!

The world is her oyster!

Keep spreading that infectious smile! The world needs it!

Go get 'em Linnea!! Congratulations!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Thank God for flush toilettes!

Yes, as I go through my days the silliest, the most poignant and the most ridiculous thoughts pop into my head.
There is so much to be grateful for and often, quite often, I stop and think about how truly lucky we are.

Is it because I have lived a long life and have seen so many changes?  Having lived in situations where there was no in house WC, washing machine, dishwasher, or refrigerator?  No tumble dryer or automatic garage door openers.  Who knows?  The point is, I am thankful every day.

With family near by, friends in our neighbourhood, incredible weather, Garbo to love, Mister Cat to smile at, plants and herbs to tend to, food to cook, guests to entertain, the Photographer to share a life with, well; life is good!  So, these are some of the thoughts that flutter in and out of my head as I move through our day.

This morning when I got out of bed Garbo and the Photographer were out for a morning walk. While  I got to sleep late.   Fixed breakfast so it was ready when the two of them returned home.  Yes, Garbo ate an egg too!

The latest updates from Casa Palos include Garbo "graduating" from the Beginner Class in Rally. Where Tiffanie Moyano of "Dog Logic U" has so patiently guided both Garbo and her rather untrainable owner through the first segments of behaviour in the sport. Our instructor cheering us on with never ending praise and encouragement!  Garbo now owns a certificate to prove it!  We will soon start the next session of classes.  Garbo and her "Mom" really like the challenge, no matter how silly we might look out there!  Garbo is a Pyr not an Aussie.  Garbo's  owner is not Laura Pryse.  :-)

Last weekend I had the pleasure of hosting a Ladies Lunch for a few of the "girls" on our street.  What a fun group of women!  We ate, drank, and were merry!  Talked about everything from soup to nuts, our  world and politics.  Imagine that!

Looking forward we have the "future Chef's" graduation coming up in the end of May.  Her parents are presenting her with a car as a graduation present.  She will need it, as she will be working as an intern at the FDA in Baltimore for the next three months.  Let us see where life takes her after that?

Linnea is bottom center
We, who have watched her grow, all wonder where the time went?  How can it have gone by so fast?

In June we look forward to having guests from Getinge, Sweden for a few days.  Photographer Maria Berg of Allt Kan Grönska is bringing her family to the US on a discovery tour!  They plan to visit  various parts of the country with San Francisco as one of the cities of interest.  What a thrill it will be to have them here.  We hope they can squeeze in a lot of memories.

Tomorrow we celebrate Cinco de Mayo!  Time for some Margaritas and a Mexican fiesta!

Saturday, April 4, 2015


It was time for another road trip!  The Photographer loaded the car, prepared the backseat with Garbo's hammock and off we went.

Mister Cat promised to "hold down the fort" with help of the soon graduating culinary students Mother.

It just so happened that Saga, the Future STAR, was performing in yet another musical production,  so the timing was close to perfect!

Yes, our talented little ten and a half year old had been invited by the West High Theatre Department in Torrance California, to sing and dance in the high schools Spring Musical.  The name of the play was "BROADWAY .. a class assignment."  There were five performances for this production at the Scarlata Theater in Torrance.  Pretty exciting we think.  Four other fifth grade students from various elementary schools were also invited along with Saga to be members of the "Junior Ensemble" to sing a solo.  Yes, I am bragging!  Yes, I am!

This play was entirely performed, directed, choreographed and arranged by the students at West High.  Costumes were designed by the students as were most of the set designs, construction and lighting just as they were in the "The Jungle Book"; the last musical our grandchild was involved in.   I, for one, am totally "blown away" by how professional these productions are.  Impressive!  Fabulous!

The talent these young people possess is both inspiring and awesome.  Sitting in the audience watching these students sing, dance and perform it was impossible not to be emotionally moved.

Impossible not to reflect on how much better the world would be if ALL children and young people had the opportunity to use their various talents in this creative fashion.  It pains me to think of all the schools that no longer provide a curriculum including music, band, chorus and the arts due to financial constraints.  These young talented kids so full of energy and creativity made me forget what ails the world!

These kids sang and danced their way through some forty songs from Broadway plays from both the Golden Age, The Rock Rebellion and all the way through the more contemporary musicals.

Educating not only themselves about the various styles in both sound and "style" but all of us.

What a treat for both ears, eyes and the heart!

May they continue to be inspired. May they continue to inspire.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Awesome ARIZONA!

Neta, Rose Mary, Stephenie, Geri, Lucille, Elaine
Let me start by saying that Arizona is oooh so Arizona, with its mountain ranges, the amazing cactus and great architecture,  setting it far apart from any other State! I love Arizona.

There we were, some of my former coworkers and I, actually taking off from San Jose International on route to Scottsdale-Phoenix!  Never had I thought this was actually going to happen.  Yet, dreams do come true.  Obviously!

We, "The Perfectly Pitched H-P Purchasing People" did it again.

Beautiful downtown Scottsdale

Not long after David's and my return from Sweden we had our 1st Annual Get Together here in Hollister.  We, or many of us, had not met for close to 25 years!

It was quite a gathering, with Elaine, Arlene, Lucille, Rose-Mary, Geri, Steph and myself.
Event number 2 was immediately planned and hosted by Lucille early last summer.  Featuring an incredible Italian Feast.  Sadly Arlene was not able to join us, nor did she this 3rd time.  We reminisced about "Gladys".... missed her a lot.


Parting at Lucille's the two Arizona "transplants" suggested :  "Next Time Arizona!"
Sure, I thought..... When Pigs Fly:-)

Then towards the end of 2014 it was seriously suggested we all start thinking about our 3rd Annual Event.  Yea, time flies!

Again, we were all invited to Arizona.  We have room they said!  Just come!  Let us find a suitable timeframe?  With the Photographer working I thought perhaps an "overnighter" was a possibility for me.

The month of March became a focus.  A month when the temperatures in AZ are comfortable it was suggested by the "natives", then like magic dates were set.  At this point David had stopped working!
That was NOT the end of the MAGIC!  Nor the end of the MIRACLES... Oh NO!

Stephenie sent us all an email, letting us know that she had "use them or lose them" accumulated air miles due to some pretty significant time soaring high in the sky.  She wanted to treat us to the tickets.
How generous was that?  Lucille, Geri, and I; gratefully, thankfully, and full of marvel said:  Yes.  Thank you so very, very much!  WOW!  This was like winning the lottery!

We were gone for not an "overnighter" but for four days!  Being treated to days full of fun and adventure!  Put up in luxurious surroundings.  Stuffed full of fabulous food!  We went shopping and Bar Hopping.... yes, Stephenie was right.  While at a very quaint wine bar, where the music was so loud we had to shout to communicate, she quipped:  "I know why I do not do this anymore"!  I agreed!  I also did some quibbling about "tip money" shame on me:-(

At the baseball game.

We went to see a baseball game!  A practice game between the SF Giants and the Cubs.
There was sightseeing in both Sedona, (a place that is totally magical) and Jerome, an old mining town located in the Black Hills, more than 5,000 feet above sea level, with a spectacular view of the Verde Valley.

Those were some jam packed days let me tell you!
Maybe Pigs do Fly?

Thank you Elaine and RoseMary!  Thank you Stephenie!  Thank You All!  Thank you from the bottom of my heart for a trip that will never be forgotten.


Where do we go next?
New York City?
Las Vegas?
Fäviken, Sweden?
Hotel Dagmar,  Ribe, Denmark?
Stockholm, SE?
We better start planning:-) NOW!