Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Every once in awhile the sun and the stars and the moon are in a perfect place and something wonderful happens. They were recently lined up in San Francisco for 5 wonderful days. Trust me on this one. Aside from having the world's largest blemish on my face, the trip to San Francisco was beyond memorable. Family bonds were strengthened, hugs were shared, grandchildren were cherished and once again there was proof that friendship builds a bridge between generations.
We did the usual touristy things enjoying our way to the most amazing last days ever.
We went to China Town with Christopher the college student. I love China Town. The smells of shu mei and cha su bao permeated the air and the stores filled with trinkets and souvenirs are impossible to pass without looking inside and touching everything.
My darling Christopher. I know.....he is handsome.
After China Town, Christopher took us to the Palace of Fine Arts. Let me see how many words I can come up with to describe this place......stunning, breathtaking, beautiful, artistically unmatched, peaceful, full of nature, fine craftsmanship....well, just look at the photos; you will see what I mean.
That's some old lady that Christopher just had to hug.
Saturday my daughter and her husband drove up and we spent the day with Christopher being uber touristy. There's that old lady again with my daughter. She needs a new look in my opinion.
We visited with a few friends. I suggested they change their diet a bit because the breath on those critters is really nasty.
I saw this beautiful tall ship while I was eating a hot fudge sunday from Ghiradelli's.
Sunday morning we felt adventuresome. Did we take the Cable Cars some where? Umm, no we decided to walk...all uphill from our hotel back to China Town for dim sum.
It was totally worth the walk because we found a little closet of a place called You Dim Sum where everything was pretty much 3/$1.50. We ate like royalty all for about $7.50.
Yup, those are forks...no chop sticks because....."No chopstick, use fork."
We contemplated hopping on the Cable Car after lunch....but, we walked back because it was downhill this time.
Then Sunday afternoon......oh, Sunday afternoon. Madeline of Willow Grace , along with her husband Jimmy, drove over an hour from their home to pick us up and show us the real San Francisco. Madeline and I have been blog friends for several years and have shared emails as well. I love to read about her travel adventures, look at her amazing craft designs, and the photo transformation of their hide-a-way. Madeline is funny, caring, talented, up beat no matter the circumstance, and has a deep love of family. Madeline helped me through the crash of my first Kindle and Jimmy gave me much needed technical advice. She suggested what has become the best book I have read in years, The Art of Racing in the Rain. In short, we were good blog friends.
Then Sunday came around. I was worried I would be boring, that there would be those uncomfortable quiet times, that we wouldn't have much in common because I am old and she isn't. That friendship bridge I mentioned? It was right there the moment we hugged each other. Then....T.H.E.N.......typical Madeline, she gave us a gift...that's right, a gift. She made one of her beautiful photo albums and what was inside? Photos of our sweet Penelope. Yup, that's my friend Madeline.
Then we were off to see some of the most beautiful spots in San Francisco.
This was taken at Twin Peaks. Aren't they an adorable couple?
The Mint....Steve owns the whole left side....he collects Mint coins and bills.
Another shot from Twin Peaks.
This is the site of a former grand hotel and eatery. If I remember correctly the sectioned off part was the "baths." We took a short walk up to the USS San Francisco monument where I shivered off about 6 or 7 pounds....but I was brave and only complained a little bit......because I was stupid and didn't bring a sweater.
Another view at Twin Peaks. Yup, there we are; me and my BF Madeline. Seriously. Now, I have two good reasons to fly to San Francisco; Christopher and Madeline.
Enjoy a little music from Pier 39.
Friday, September 18, 2009
The flight to San Francisco was 2 1/2 hours late leaving.
We had the cab driver from hell take us to the hotel in San Francisco.
The city is beautiful from our room at night......we are on the 23rd floor.
Today our grandson is taking us sight seeing.
I have a huge zit on my forehead.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Never to be seen again in the history of our home......Fuzzy who hates Petey, Petey who is scared to pieces of Fuzzy and Violet who rarely shares the couch with anyone including me.
Basket sitting 101. Lesson according to Mimi Louise: Look and learn little girl.....cute isn't everything, you gotta have style.
Heard coming from behind Steve's office door...... sounds a bit like Fuzz: You stupid kittens, open the door....NOW!
I said NOW!
Wondering how Fuzz is doing given his diagnosis? He is holding his own, eating pretty well (he sleeps in Steve's office at night so the kittens don't steal his food) gets around OK and is still a lap loving momma's boy. He has defied the odds....the vet gave him only a few months at best but he is still here!!! He does have his not feeling spiffy moments, but they pass and he gets right back on the kitty treadmill of life.....you know; eat, potty, nap, take a small bath, eat, potty, nap, bath.
Monday, September 07, 2009
...a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck....a hug around the neck and a barrel and a heap....anyone remember this song??? If you do you're as old me.
Steve thinks we can save the world from starvation with this years garden crop of potatoes and peaches....and don't overlook those tomatoes!!! Aren't those potatoes the cutest things ever?
I'm thinking I'll have a Labor Day give-away and invite all the neighbors over to pick their own bushel and peck of whatever they like...weeds, or maybe dandelions, and they can fight over the two peaches left on the tree.
This is the smallest sunflower.....it is about 7 feet tall while the others are over 8 feet. The bees are having a love fest on them.
This is the first year in 11 years of living here full time that we have ever eaten anything from our garden....seriously, ever.
Friday, September 04, 2009
The doorbell rang 452 times yesterday and the dogs barked 455 times just to be sure we knew the relief UPS guy had left a package.
What we found was a letterbox that held a gift from our daughter Christine. She had designed and made a book for us about our Peteylove.
It's a lot longer than these few photos pages, but you will get the full flavor of her love for Petey, Violet and us. There are times when the love I feel for Chris is overwhelming. Everyday her thoughtfulness and tenderness is with me in large size and then she goes and jumbos these qualities.
Petey has brought so much joy and love into our lives and we wouldn't have him if it wasn't for Chris. Kiss, kiss my sweet girl.
Wednesday, September 02, 2009
Once upon a time in the Valley of Selle there lived a nice generational family....ummm, let's call them the Wonderfuls. There was a matriarch and most of her children and they all lived on the same street. Then, another family moved to the same street....let's call this new family....ummm, Thegrandparenttypes, known as TGTs hereafter. There was only a man and a woman in this family. TGTs house was right next door to (but acres away from) one of the Wonderful children. There was a Wonderful dad, mom and two Wonderful children in this family.
TGTs loved the Wonderfuls and in particular their small children. TGTs liked the sound of the Wonderful children playing in the forest, watching them ride their bikes up and down the street, and watched with a bit of fright and awe as they pulled one another in the snow on a trash can lid attached to the back of an ATV.
There was a path cut between the Wonderfuls and TGTs property so the children could easily visit TGTs. The path was kept open all year round. One winter the TGTs lady had these children over every week to make crafts and gifts for the Wonderful parents. It was a special time in the Valley of Selle......almost magical.
Nothing stays the same; everyone knows that. Eventually the Wonderful children grew up and didn't visit the TGTs as often....they had friends their own age and were turning into an outgoing, adorable young man and sweet, beautiful young girl. TGTs understood and enjoyed hearing the stories the Wonderfuls parents told them about the children.
Then the sad thing happened. The Wonderfuls decided to move into the hamlet of Sandpoint. The children were going into middle and high school and the family wanted a more versatile way of life....sniff, snork. The Wonderful house was put up for sale in the summer.....it was a lovely home surrounded by tall forest trees, wildlife and a special area landscaped with native plants, flowers and shrubs. The house sold quickly.
The Wonderfuls told TGTs that another family with two children (both boys) would be moving in by October. TGTs had hope that they would again hear the sounds of children laughing and playing and even visiting once in a while.
TGTs met the woman and two children that first summer and they seemed OK. Let's start out calling them the Notoptimalneighbors, known as NONs hereafter. TGTs went over to visit and brought cookies. The woman answered the door, took the cookies and said thanks......then she closed the door. That winter the children were heard in the forest but they were screaming loudly. The path was plowed, but no one came to visit TGTs. The next summer the NONs father came over to talk to TGTs man and asked if he would mow the NONs lawn because they didn't have a mower. TGTs man said sure. The assumption by TGTs man was that the NONs man would help. As TGTs man arrived on the riding mower at the NONs home, the NONs were all leaving with their boat to go to the lake......the NONs man yelled Hey, thanks.
The grass was full of weeds and at least 3 feet tall in most places. TGTs man ran over a toy truck and a bag of trash and messed up the riding mower.
Additional information over the years about the NONs goes like this: The children scream all of the time no matter the season, the weeds have taken over the yard and are 5 feet tall in places and those native plants are dead, their door mat says LEAVE, the oldest boy has been banned from the school bus, he was seen by TGTs woman hitting (as in beating the crap out of) his younger brother, they leave trash eg: soda cans, chip bags etc. on TGTs trails (that's an assumption because they have not been seen leaving said trash, but have been seen on said trails as they cross TGTs property to go home, the oldest boy accused TGTs of stealing their cat because said cat sleeps in TGTs pole barn, has it been mentioned that they have two viscous dogs that pinned Penelope down when they escaped their kennel and left Penelope with puncture wounds?, when TGTs said hello to the NONs at a local Mexican restaurant only the NONs man said hello, the NONs man has come over twice to ask if TGTs man would mow the lawn again and was told no, the NONs man asked TGTs man to plow their driveway and TGTs man did it once but never again because the NONs man told TGTs man that he didn't do a good job by the garage door.....and so much more information that TGTs decided to call this family Theneighborsfromhell, known as NFH for ever more.
Last weekend the matriarch of the Wonderfuls had her annual neighborhood gathering....this was the 11th year TGTs had attended. While the Wonderful children were not there....they are young adults now.....the Wonderful parents were there. TGTs were so happy to see them the TGTs lady almost cried....they all hugged and there was a lunch planned but TGTs lady went to the dentist and her mouth is screwed up so it is just postponed for now. The NFH were not at the gathering. TGTs lady said a small prayer of thanks because had they been there she might have slapped someone.
See? See? Here are the Wonderfuls children in 2001. Wonnerful.
The 2008 Christmas card.....still wonnerful just all grown up. Big sniff and 3 snorks.
Note left for TGTs lady by the Wonderful boy in the lady's Sudoku book. TGTs lady says she never cheats when doing puzzles.
There will be no photos of the NFH yard, children or the viscous dogs because ......well, they are the NFH. In all fairness, the Wonderfuls are an impossible act to follow.