Friday, April 28, 2023

Our Avocados

 This is nothing yet everything. Mike buys avocados. He likes to eat one every morning. I don't buy avocados usually but I knew I was having some friends over earlier this week and I said " could you save me an avocado I want to put one in the salad I'm making for my friends.?" This morning I saw that someone on fb was eating avocado toast. That sounded appealing. I went to the fridge only to find the last avocado. A few minutes later Mike came to the kitchen from his office (one of the bedrooms is now his office space since working from home) and I told him that I didn't eat his last avocado. I said "YOUR avocado". Without hesitation he said "OUR avocado, they're our avocados, not MY avocado!" Somehow this struck me tenderly. It is the same feeling I get when he, without me asking, places a hot cup of tea next to me and says this is for you, or when I wake up to find the jigsaw puzzle we've been working on finished except for the last piece which he has saved for me to put in place. Like I said this is nothing yet everything.

Old Hippies


Thursday, April 27, 2023

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Tracie's Salad with Pears and Avocados



  • 1 head leaf lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces she used Mache Tjoes’
  • 3 pears - peeled, cored and chopped
  • 5 ounces Roquefort cheese, crumbled or bleu or gorgonzola
  • 1 avocado - peeled, pitted, and diced
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions or red onions
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup pecans or walnuts
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • fresh ground black pepper to taste

Directions  Note: I buy candied pecans from Trader Joe's

  1. In a skillet over medium heat, stir 1/4 cup of sugar together with the pecans. Continue stirring gently until sugar has melted and caramelized the pecans. Carefully transfer nuts onto waxed paper. Allow to cool, and break into pieces.
  2. For the dressing, blend oil, vinegar, 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar, mustard, chopped garlic, salt, and pepper.
  3. In a large serving bowl, layer lettuce, pears, blue cheese, avocado, and green onions. Pour dressing over salad, sprinkle with pecans, and serve.

Tips: I always double the recipe for dressing.



*I used 1 pkg. TJ salad greens, 1 pear, 1 avocado and 1 recipe of dressing mixed. Then added pecans, gorgonzola and green onions to plated salad. Served 5 perfectly  no left over.





Tuesday, April 25, 2023

A Gathering for "A Woman of Independent Means"


 Today I hosted a lunch for my sister Jocelyn and my friends Mitra and Marion.


A while back we had talked about a book by Elizabeth Forsythe Hailey titled "A Woman of Independent Means".  I had read this book long ago when my aunt Mary suggested I read it. It was published originally in 1978.  I loved the book then and after decades passed I reread it and loved it even more. I found out that a television mini-series was made from this book in 2008 so I bought the dvd and had wanted us all to gather to see the film version of the book. (It's 4 hours long).  Finally we were all able to be together and start to view the adaptation. It was fun to be together drinking cadillac margaritas 

and catching up on our own lives. 




 We ate lunch 

and celebrated Mitra's upcoming birthday with a Boston Cream pie that Marion had brought.


Making a wish...

May all your wishes come true dear Mitra-joon


Tre stagioni per sempre.


We were able to watch the movie for an hour. Now we will pass along the dvd for us each to finish on our own. What a wonderful day for friends to be together.  


Here is a short synopsis of the story: 

"At the turn of the century, a time when women had few choices, Bess Steed Garner inherits a legacynot only of wealth but of determination and desire, making her truly a woman of independent means. From the early 1900s through the 1960s, we accompany Bess as she endures life's trials and triumphs with unfailing courage and indomitable spirit: the sacrifices love sometimes requires of the heart, the flaws and rewards of marriage, the often-tested bond between mother and child, and the will to defy a society that demands conformity. "

Monday, April 24, 2023

Like Mother Like Son


Momma  Aria and Rocco

Momma Athena and Jude

Sunday, April 23, 2023

"The Best Cookie of My Life!"

The end of the school year is nearing. My daughter  sent me this picture of Sofia and Rocco enthusiastically eating. She said "The dining hall staff made these one pan chocolate chip cookies for them to take home and Sofia said it was the best cookie of her life! I think the picture says it all! 



Saturday, April 22, 2023

Celebrating Helen's "106th" Birthday


We spent a wonderful afternoon with Helen. She turned 106 on March 2nd but we delayed the celebration until today. We were able to celebrate Helen's birthday annually until covid hit in 2020 so we missed some valuable years together.  Last year in 2022 we were able to be together with her. Today we were able to spend a whole lovely afternoon with Helen.


 For the last couple of years she has been bedridden. She has stopped doing her beloved jigsaw puzzles but she does continue to love her Korean soap operas which she watches daily. 


 She lives with her daughter Jill and her son in law Bob. They have a care-giver with her as well. Helen is remarkable for her age. She is able to carry on lucid conversations and she is funny. She makes us all laugh. 



 We had a hearty laugh at Helen's bedside.


Vicente was wearing bermuda shorts and we were all standing around her bed. Vicente said, "Oh my God! My pants just fell down!"  He has lost so much weight since he last wore them that they just slid off. When he said that Helen didn't miss a beat and replied:    "If I knew that I would have jumped out of bed to see!"  She also said to Jocelyn about Vicente, "This may not be a very nice thing to say but I think he (pointing to Vicente) was wearing the same shirt the last time he was here."  We all laughed so hard.    (I went back to last year's visit and no Vicente was not wearing the same shirt) but wouldn't it have been something if he was. 

 At any rate she is,  at 106, still able to charm us all and gift us with her lovely, sweet presence. 

Here we are wishing Helen a very happy 106th birthday.


Randy and Barb
Vicente and Jocelyn
Barb with Helen's daughter Jill

Mike with Helen's son in law Bobby


We brought lunch (Hawaiian food) 


 and a cake to commemorate this special birthday.  



Riley, the family dog was waiting for some treats. 

We all had such a wonderful time being with Helen.

We kept saying:  "Helen, you are such an amazing person!"  She replied "No I'm not.  If I was really amazing I'd be up cooking dinner for  you all!"    

We love you. We cherish you. We wish you days upon days of  happiness always.  

"Happy 106th Birthday!"

Friday, April 21, 2023

Palm Springs Part 2

Friday morning at Pati and Stuart's condo

 views from the patio of my bedroom

Pati, Stuart and I took a walk around the condo area.

Monkeying around

At 11:00 we met up with Mike and Gary and Jocelyn and Vicente at "Spencer's" restaurant for brunch. It was a beautiful day to have lunch on the patio. Great conversations and lots of  nostalgic memories continued.


After a wonderful brunch we said our goodbyes and headed home. It was a short but meaningful trip to Palm Springs.

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