Sunday, March 20, 2011


Rose Garden at Descanso

Lilac Garden at Descanso

Green Street Bridge in Pasadena

Rose Bowl Swap Meet!

Vintage Catalina Poster

Catalina Non-Vintage-:)

I'm a bit homesick these days.  Yes, I was raised in New Mexico and live in Colorado, but I consider Los Angeles my home.  People think I'm absolutely crazy to miss being there - they cite traffic, smog, too many people - but I loved it.  Above are some of my favorite places.  Yes, the Rose Bowl Swap Meet is one of them!  Nothing like that here and I love digging up a good flea market find. 

If I had my way I would have a tiny house on Catalina and live there.  But of course buying a garage on the island costs about a million right now, so it's doubtful-:)

Also, I love Descanso Gardens.  We would go there every season and there was always something to see.  It's a beautiful garden, but not as formal as the Huntington which is maybe why I liked it so much.  And I miss Lilac Season.  True , lilacs grow here and have a longer blooming season, but it was sort of an early spring ritual to visit the gardens and see all of their lilacs.

I think I might be homesick because it's been sunny.  I'd love to go for a visit but not in the cards this year.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I'll have what she's having...

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Birthday gifts

Gifts one and two and three...
Gift four...

And Gift five.

My birthday was this past weekend and it was just lovely.  I had lots of lovin' and lots of gifts.

Gifts one and two are our dear friends, Edgar and Dora.  They took the RD (gift three) and me out for dinner to an institution in Denver, The Buckhorn Exchange.  The restaurant was established in 1893 and proudly displays liquor license Number One in Denver, CO.  Theodore Roosevelt's train stopped there and the walls are lined with memorabilia from the famous who have come through the doors, as well as a very large number of game heads from back in the day.  The Buckhorn specializes in exotic meat and so for my dinner I selected grilled Yak at the suggestion of Edgar.  Edgar, who is a chef at the establishment, has a beautiful way of describing food and by the time he was finished, I was sold!  It was great to have him guide me through the differences in the various types of meat.  But I did have to laugh when he said some people come in and ask for a vegetarian platter.  No offense to vegetarians, but the Buckhorn is the very last place on the planet you would go for veggies-:). 

Dora and Edgar are two gifts brought to us through the network of our boys.  They play, go to school, go to religious ed. and do scouts together.  So we are all TOGETHER a lot.  It's so nice to find people you enjoy being with, especially when your kids like each other.

Gift four is my new puppy!!!!  His name is Mercer, named after Johnny Mercer, lyricist extraordinaire.  He is part Dachschund and part Shepherd or Collie.  Just beeeutiful and sweet as can be.  At five months old he is such a tiny puppy who sleeps a lot.  Gershwin (that would be our 13 lb. Doxie/Chihuahua) just wants to play with him.  But I must admit, Gersh.  is just a tad jealous of the little one.  Today they had some sort of break through while we were away.  Must have had a conversation in the mud room and agreed to be pals, because Mercer happily trotted after Gershwin most of the afternoon.  Ella (our 9 yr. old Shepherd/Collie) is still young at heart and enjoys running after them.  So I'm quite happy that they all get along!

And of course, my best and last present was the CO Boy.  He did his best on Saturday to honor the idea of my birthday and kept telling me that we could do whatever I wanted to do because today was my special day.  It's so funny to watch him be deliberate about stuff like that.

Now I'm off to bed - that is if I can find room in the bed with three dogs, one boy and the RD!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Will he dance?

Angel Corella formerly of the ABT
class at ABT
I've been telling the Roping Dummy for quite a while that I suspect one of the CO Boy's big passions is dance.  Rewind for a bit of backstory:  I love dance.  Wished I could still dance.  Introduced CO Boy to ballet at a youngish age (he was probably the only kid in the theater who actually knew the story of the Nutcracker).  He loves watching dance of any kind, but seems to gravitate to ballet.  When we watch the Gene Kelly movies some of his favorite dances are the ballet sequences.

Last night he and I were watching some dancers on Youtube and he was captivated.  This morning the RD asked him if he would like to dance and he said he would. 

You know, you make every effort to expose your children to different experiences in the hopes that they will find something to light their passion for life.  The problem with this child is that he loves just about everything, so I sort of have to use my own intuition with him.  And my intuition tells me he may want to dance.  At least for now. I say he might want to dance for now because later on, the pressures he might face as he gets older will become difficult.  Once upon a time, all you had was teasing and name calling.  Now kids get abused for being different.  And I worry.  We all know how Americans view male dancers - they must be gay or very unmasculine at best.  However, if any of them caught sight of Angel Corella in his street clothes, they might think twice! 

There is a great Boys Ballet program in a nearby suburb but the scheduling won't work at the moment.  Perhaps this summer.  I'd like to give him the opportunity to at least see if he enjoys it.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Book Love

The Postmistress was somewhat of a dissappointment, I'm sorry to say.  The payoff wasn't big enough at the end to justify the build up, so I wouldn't really call it commercial fiction.  But the prose didn't really jump off of the page in a way that would break your heart or make you want to re-read sections again, so I wouldn't really call it literary fiction either.  Sort of a middle ground.  Either way, I found myself rushing through pages to get to something else.  I picked up the book because of the endorsement on it from Kathryn Stockett (The Help), and I really wanted to like it.  And while I wasn't crazy about it, I liked her writing well enough to want to read another of her books, Grange House.  We'll see if that one flies.

I like biographies and this one is fascinating.  I don't know a lot about the Captains of Industry who brought us U.S. Steel, Standard Oil and the like.  Titan is quite readable and Chernow does an admirable job of making you see why JDR was both greedy and philanthropic. 

This one is more like an act of praying for me.  I am not a gardener but I would like to be.  I think one of the problems for me is the ambitious nature that takes over when you go to the garden store in April and get all these fabulous ideas.  You buy the stuff and then you realize you don't have the time to plant/care for all the things like you thought you would.  This is my problem.  I'm hoping to make a small foray into the gardening world with this idea of square foot gardening.  From what I've read, it makes a lot of sense.  If later this year, I'm able to post of picture here of a bunch of Swiss Chard, we'll know it turned out well. 

Royal Flush is the third book of the series and I'm just now ready to crack it open.  It's so much fun to read these.  Rhys Bowen is so great at creating characters.  Two of my favorite characters in the book are Binky (Georgie's brother) and his wife, Fig.  They're so funny and uptight.  I've already cast Colin Firth as Binky and Harriet Walter as Fig. 

Tonight I have Cub Scouts so perhaps I can sneak in chapter one before bed time!