Tuesday, December 21, 2010

I have not been abducted by aliens

It's true - I'm still on lovely Planet Earth.  I'm not sure why I decided I needed a break from blogging, but I did and still do.  I'm in the middle of remodeling my new apartment and it's taking a bit longer than anticipated.  I hope to be in my new digs in January, complete with a new kitchen!  Yay!

Speaking of new digs, I've just started setting up a new blog, which you can find here.  I'm not sure when the first post will show up - right now, I'm attempting to remember how to use Blogger!  Yes, it's been that long!  I also set one up at WordPress and may go over there eventually, but trying to figure it out now was too much for my little brain.

I wish you all a happy and healthy Solstice and Yuletide season.  See you in the new year!!

~Image is from PhotoBucket~

Friday, September 3, 2010

A new man in town

Steamy, hot, sultry
A new man in town ~ he says:
Hi, my name is Earl.

Once upon a time, there was a quiet little village in the French countryside, whose people believed in Tranquilité - Tranquility. If you lived in this village, you understood what was expected of you. You knew your place in the scheme of things. And if you happened to forget, someone would help remind you. In this village, if you saw something you weren't supposed to see, you learned to look the other way. If perchance your hopes had been disappointed, you learned never to ask for more. So through good times and bad, famine and feast, the villagers held fast to their traditions. Until, one winter day, a sly wind blew in from the North... 

Well, the wind that might blow into town isn't Johnny Depp playing Roux in Chocolat, a movie I enjoyed.  The wind that's blowing, weakly, is Earl - Hurricane Earl, that is!   He's made NJ into a hot house and, with the chance of rain this afternoon, will most like ramp up the status of hothouse to extreme hothouse!

I'm not sure if that picture is from Chcolat or not.  Doesn't matter - it's easy on the eyes!  

It's Haiku my Heart Friday - be sure to head on over to Rebecca's place to taste some delicious  morsels of haiku!

Image of Johnny Depp from Photobucket

Friday, August 27, 2010

Haiku my Heart Friday

'Fridge nearly empty
Pasta, shrimp, garlic, white wine
Dinner last evening

Yes, it was true - the 'fridge was nearly empty last night, but I managed to eat well!  Amazing how a few ingredients can make such a great meal.  Add a little fresh basil, lemon and some Grana Padana cheese and it was sublime.  

Happy Haiku my Heart Friday!  For more delicious offerings, head on over to Rebecca's place for a sampling - you'll leave feeling quite satisfied!

No, that picture isn't mine, but it does look like what I made - image is from Photobucket.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Cat lover extraordinaire

Since this is the last day of Leo, I thought that this video would be appropriate.  The relationship that this man has with lions and other big cats is truly amazing and inspirational.  I believe that the more we strengthen our bond with the natural world, the more human - and humane - we will become.  The video will probably view better over at You Tube than here.

Happy Birthday to all Leos!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Haiku my Heart Friday


butterfly dancing,
dainty feet tickle flowers....
caterpillar dreams.

I remember reading "Illusions" by Richard Bach so many years ago...one of the passages he wrote went something like this:

"The mark of your ignorance is the depth of your belief in injustice and tragedy.  What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls the butterfly."

I also recall the Gary Larson cartoon of 2 caterpillars inching along on the ground.  They happened to look  up and saw butterflies flitting about.  One of the caterpillars looked at the other and said, "You'll never catch ME up in one of those things."

Well, change greets all of us, whether we are prepared for it or not....

Me?  I feel as if I'm in my chrysalis, about ready to break through and pump my newly formed wings.  An interesting place to be at this age....

It's Haiku my Heart Friday.  Won't you participate?  To see more offerings, head on over to Rebecca's place.  You won't be disappointed.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Haiku my Heart Friday

Pretty green parrot ~
White eye looks into your soul.
Her sharp beak draws blood.

Ah, Millie - she is a Maximillian Pionus parrot who is sweet sixteen - we've been together since she was 4, when her owner decided to give her up for a dog. Now, I had 2 dogs at the time and couldn't bear the thought of her going to a place she didn't know - or worse, a place she didn't survive.  So, she came to live with me and has done - well, whatever she wants for these past 12 years!

Millie came across country with me on the plane from California - a real trooper, surviving the "inquisitors" that made sure that her little travel cage didn't have explosives - you know, 911 and Code Orange and stuff.  We were separated when my Gypsy jewelry set off alarms and we went in two different directions:  she headed down the moving thingy and I had to be patted down by the security "agents."

Eventually, we were reunited, made the trip to Newark and have survived here since 2003.  She does well with Kylie, the border collie - in fact, she goes "walk about" when I fall asleep on the sofa after a couple of glasses of wine, bypassing Kylie and all obstacles in her way to explore whatever she wants.  One day, she decided to do this while I was doing dishes in the kitchen - when I felt "something" on my feet and let out a gasp, I'm sure she was cackling to herself about scaring her mom!

We've had a tempestuous relationship, but I think it's getting better - we're both older and a bit wiser. Or more tolerant.


For more Haiku my Heart, please visit Rebecca here. You won't be disappointed!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Ruby Tuesday - again!

Yum!!  Strawberries and blackberries with vinegar....Balsamic Vinegar!  Delicious!  I thought it sounded quite horrible when I first saw The Barefoot Contessa make it - but, I was brave and decided to try it a few weeks ago.

O. M. G.  Was it delicious!!

I bought some organically grown strawberries and blackberries the other day and decided to do both of them with the Balsamic Vinegar....it was so worth it.

Wash, hull and slice the strawberries; wash the blackberries.  Toss them with about a tablespoon plus a bit more sugar - I almost used Agave Nectar, but passed on it this time around.  Make sure you put a PINCH of salt into the fruit - it just makes the fruit taste better.

Since I had lots of fruit today, I took half of it and put it into another bowl while it marinated in the sugar; then tossed the other half in about 2 tablespoons of the Balsamic Vinegar plus a few turns of the pepper grinder.  I let it sit for about 30 minutes while we ate*.  I served it in some pretty glass bowls.

Really - give it a try.

Happy Ruby Tuesday!  For more offerings, please visit Work of the Poet!

*Dinner was salmon on the stove top grill (marinated in some EVOO and Kosher salt), steamed Basmati rice and grilled tomatoes, broccoli, garlic and lemon zest with fresh herbs (oregano and thyme) tossed in some extra virgin olive oil and Kosher salt.


It was GOOD.

Try it.

Happy Ruby Tuesday, everyone!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Dogs, Dolphins and Love

What could be better?  Not much for me!  This video is best watched over at You Tube rather than the small screen here.

Forget that the language isn't English and that the video runs 11 minutes - just enjoy the story and the photography.  I don't think you'll be disappointed.

Oh - I needed a couple of tissues while watching...just a warning!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Haiku my Heart Friday

Sultry steam bathing,
cool dressing on exposed flesh ~
Potato Salad!

I have no idea why I cannot write a serious haiku!  All that goes through my little brain on Thursday evening or Friday morning is silly stuff for haiku - today it's potato salad, because I made some yesterday and just had a small bite of it.  The haiku demanded to be exposed!

My recipe is simple and delicious - at least, I think so!  

Steam your favorite kind of potatoes - I used the small California whites, but have done this with small red potatoes or even Yukon golds.  Don't over steam them - you want the shape of the potato to hold up when mixed with the other goodies!  Of course, you can also boil the potatoes if you're more comfortable with that method - I just like steaming them.

After they're done to perfection, let them cool.  You can either skin them or leave the skins on, your choice.  I've done both.

Cut them into chunks, put into a big bowl and salt with Kosher salt, to taste.  Add all of the following to taste:  chopped celery, chopped fresh dill, chopped fresh Italian flat leaf parsley, freshly ground pepper, finely chopped or grated onion, good mayonnaise and a bit of apple cider vinegar.  Toss, chill and enjoy!

It's Haiku my Heart Friday!  For more haiku offerings, head on over to Rebecca's place and enjoy!

Top image is from Photobucket

Friday, July 30, 2010

Haiku my Heart Friday

Biting the apple
New knowledge flooding through me...
iPhone is way cool!

I've been preoccupied with my new iPhone and MacBook - so much so that I feel like I'm in computer class most of the time!  I'm sure this obsession will pass and I'll be back to some sort of routine that isn't geared around these sorts of Apples!

Happy Haiku my Heart Friday!!  For more offerings, head on over to Rebecca's place!

Image is from Photobucket

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Lullaby for a Mouse

Love comes however She wants, whenever She wants.  A very sweet YouTube for a special love.

This is what was written about this little guy:

Zeus, our beloved Duirmouse, May 12, 2009 - June 20, 2010. Abandoned by his mouse mommy at one day old, he crawled out from under our washing machine and lived, despite the odds. I fed him every two hours and took to carrying him in my pocket or in my sports bra, which became his home. Our adventure mouse not only survived but thrived, taking a hot air balloon ride over the Rio Grande, riding in three cross country road trips, hiking through the Sangre De Cristo mountains and ultimately walking me down the aisle at my wedding in May 2010. He was extraordinary in every way. Still is. This is his lullaby. ::::Goodnight, my love. Goodnight::::

Friday, July 23, 2010

Hummingbird don't fly away....

Someone sent this to me in today's mail.  It is a short You Tube video of the Nature program on Hummingbirds and it is astonishing in its photography.  Scenes were shot in high definition, so if your computer has high def, you are in for a treat!  It is worth the 9+ minutes to view these incredible birds.

I know Abi loves hummers and so does Inanna - hoping you both enjoy this!  You might want to watch the original over at You Tube where the screen is larger than what is posted here.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Haiku My Heart Friday

Morning symphony...
Robin, Cardinal ~ then, Jay.
Mockingbird solo!

These birds are just amazing!  There is one who sits on the antenna across the street and sings. SINGS!  At just about 4 pm daily - every song. The entire repertoire.  So beautiful.  So amazing.  How can this be improved?

It's Haiku My Heart Friday - again!  I hope it is a great one for all of you!  

To see more offerings of Haiku My Heart, go on over to Rebecca's place and check out what everyone is haiku-ing!

In the meantime, I'll try to find the picture that goes with Haiku My Heart Friday.


I know it's here somewhere!!

Image from Cornell's wonderful site about birds.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Happy Ruby Tuesday!

Aren't they both adorable?  Neighbors from the old 'hood - both he and his wife took in baby squirrels and raised them until they were ready to be released into the wild.  This little guy is named Joe - the other one (they actually had the courage to raise 2 of them!!) was named Ross.  Both boys wreaked havoc in the house at times and, at others, charmed everyone.  Including me!

I didn't run this by him to see if it was okay to post it - hopefully, I won't have to pull it.  Perhaps, I should put black tape over both of their eyes??

Happy Ruby Tuesday, everyone!  For more offerings, go see Mary here.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Haiku My Heart Friday

Sweet Gardenia ~
Foregoing the holiday...
Billie sang the blues.

I just got my computer back from the Apple store and I can't find the downloads file for the Haiku my Heart icon....sigh.  This is what it is this evening...I'll try again in the morning and see if I can figure out what is going on.  Been gone for too long...

To see more haiku, go on over to Rebecca's place and savor the offerings!

Happy Haiku My Heart Friday!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Haiku My Heart Friday

This image made me laugh because I tend to read words backwards just to see if they spell something different.  I blame it on my mother as she used to do that.  For example, Dunkin' Donuts became Stunod Niknuds in her world.  One of my pastimes when riding the bus in NJ prior to moving to California was to pick the longest word on any advertisement and see how many words I could find in that one word.  Kept my mind from being immensely bored or my being bus sick!

I'm reminded how much I love words and spelling.  Which, of course, brought to mind a long lost acquaintance who contacted me via Face Book earlier this year.  We went to school together - grammar school through high school.  We actually lived a few doors down, but I never really got to know him well as he was very quiet and shy.  I did not keep in touch with him, so 40+ years later, I was surprised to hear from him.

One of the memories that he recounted from 8th grade was his loss to me in a spelling bee and being mad about it.  He even remembered the word that he incorrectly spelled, which made me laugh.  So funny and interesting what any of us remembers from the way back time machine!

So without further ado, here is the haiku that was inspired by this Face Book connection:

8th grade spelling bee
You're still mad at me for this
word:  intoxicate.

For more haiku offering, go to Rebecca's site.

Posting early as my computer is going in to the Apple place for replacement of a part that is causing problems and for doing the mind meld from my old Mac.  I'll be off line for a few days - see you when I get back!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Luminous Tease


Change yourself in the way you want everyone else to change
Love your enemies in case your friends turn out to be jerks
Avoid thinking about winning the lottery while making love
Brainwash yourself before someone nasty beats you to it
Confess big secrets to people who aren't very interested
Write a love letter to your evil twin during a lunar eclipse
Fool the tricky red beasts guarding the Wheels of Time
Locate the master codex and add erudite graffiti to it
Dream up wilder, wetter, more interesting problems
Change your name every day for a thousand days
Exaggerate your flaws till they turn into virtues
Kill the apocalypse and annihilate Armageddon
Brag about what you can't do and don't have
Get a vanity license plate that reads KZMYAZ
Bow down to the greatest mystery you know
Make fun of people who make fun of people
See how far you can spit a mouthful of beer
Pick blackberries naked in the pouring rain
Scare yourself with how beautiful you are
Simulate global warming into your pants
Stage a slow-motion water balloon fight
Pretend your wounds are exotic tattoos
Sing anarchist lullabies to lesbian trees
Plunge butcher knives into accordions
Commit a crime that breaks no laws
Sip the tears of someone you love
Build a plush orphanage in Minsk
Feel sorry for a devious lawyer
Rebel against your horoscope
Give yourself another chance
Write your autohagiography
Play games with no rules
Teach animals to dance
Trick your nightmares
Relax and go deeper
Dream like stones
Mock your fears
Drink the sun
Sing love
Be mojo
Do jigs
Ask id

~Rob Brezsny~

Huichol Sun and Moon, image from Photobucket

Saturday, July 3, 2010

See you in a bit! With an update...

This is Lilith, my new computer.  She's a MacBook Pro that I bought in March of this year and she's having some issues.  So we're off to the Apple store for a morning appointment to see what is wrong with her.  I'm also taking Evie, my first Mac, an IMac, in to have the information transferred over to Lilith - it will take a few days, I'm told, so we won't be around until Monday - I hope it's not later than that!

Have a wonderful 4th of July weekend, everyone!  See you soon!

Update:  Well, it seems Lilith's hardware has a glitch and needs a new part, which won't show up until next week.  Then, I will be without a computer for a few days while they Apple folks do the repair and do the mind meld from Evie to Lilith!

I can get online, but it sure does take a LONG time!  As in dial up slowed down to the pace of a turtle.  But, at least I can get online, so I am thankful for that!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Haiku My Heart Friday

Black and white streaks by
Leaps, pounces, growls, spins, then barks
"Throw it again, Mom"

More haiku offerings can be found at Rebecca's place - go visit!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Happy Canada Day!

I spent 3 glorious summers in Nova Scotia as a teen in the '60s and just adored it.  It was my first trip out of the country by myself, going to an all girls camp for the entire summer.  I really fell in love with Nova Scotia and the Bay of Fundy, whose tides came in like a speeding locomotive through the cove.  I remember rushing across that cove, mud squishing beneath my feet, in order to get back to shore before the water reached my knees!  I wrote about it here.

I also vacationed one year in British Columbia, loving that, too.  The ferries were a lovely way to get into Vancouver Island and high tea at the Empress Hotel.  I got as far inland as Penticton, where one of the places we stopped was the Okanogan Game Farm.  I will never forget seeing baby musk oxen and the sensation of them sucking on my fingers.  They were so adorable!  One day, I would love to see the interior of this beautiful country.

And who can not love their paper money with animals on it rather than stodgy old men!

Happy Canada Day!

From Wiki:

Official English

O Canada!
Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.
With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!
From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

Official French

Ô Canada!
Terre de nos aïeux,
Ton front est ceint de fleurons glorieux!
Car ton bras sait porter l'épée,
Il sait porter la croix!
Ton histoire est une épopée
Des plus brillants exploits.
Et ta valeur, de foi trempée,
Protégera nos foyers et nos droits.
Protégera nos foyers et nos droits.

O Canada!
Land of our forefathers,
Thy brow is wreathed with a glorious
garland of flowers.
As is thy arm ready to wield the sword,
So also is it ready to carry the cross.
Thy history is an epic
Of the most brilliant exploits.
Thy valour steeped in faith
Will protect our homes and our rights

ᐆ ᑲᓇᑕ!
ᓇᖕᒥᓂ ᓄᓇᕗᑦ!
ᐱᖁᔭᑏ ᓇᓚᑦᑎᐊᖅᐸᕗᑦ.
ᓇᖏᖅᐳᒍ, ᐆ ᑲᓇᑕ,
ᐆ ᑲᓇᑕ! ᓄᓇᑦᓯᐊ!
ᓇᖏᖅᐳᒍ ᒥᐊᓂᕆᑉᓗᑎ,
ᐆ ᑲᓇᑕ, ᓴᓚᒋᔭᐅᖁᓇ!

Uu Kanata!
Nangmini nunavut!
Piqujatii nalattiaqpavut.
Nangiqpugu, Uu Kanata,
Uu Kanata! nunatsia!
Nangiqpugu mianiripluti,
Uu Kanata, salagijauquna!

[edit]Lyrical changes

Weir's original lyrics from 1908 did not contain any religious references and used the phrase "thou dost in us command" before they were changed by Weir in 1914 to read "in all thy sons command".[1][3][4][5] In 1926, a fourth verse of a religious nature was added.[6]
Toronto City Council in June 1990 voted 12 to 7 in favour of recommending to the Canadian government that the phrase "our home and native land" be changed to "our home and cherished land" and that "in all thy sons command" be partly reverted to "in all of us command." Also proposed, but ultimately rejected, was the alternate wording "thy sons and daughters stand." Councillor Howard Moscoe said that the words native land were not appropriate for the many Canadians who were not native-born and that the word sons implied "that women can't feel true patriotism or love for Canada."[7] Senator Vivienne Poy similarly criticized the English lyrics of the anthem as being sexist,[6] leading her to, in 2002, introduce a bill proposing to change the phrase "in all thy sons command" to "in all of us command." And, in the late 2000s, the anthem's religious references (to God in English and to the Christian cross in French) were criticized by secularists.[8][9]
In the Throne Speech delivered by Governor General Michaëlle Jean on March 3, 2010, a plan to have parliament review the "original gender-neutral wording of the national anthem" was announced.[10] However, there was a mass outcry with three quarters of polled Canadians objecting to the proposal,[11] and two days later the Prime Minister's Office announced that the government had decided to leave the national anthem alone.[12]

Image from Photobucket

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Garden dance

Garden Night
—Mitz Sackman, Murphys

She looks out the kitchen window
Her small garden a picture of stillness
In the fading light
She has worked hard this summer
Planting and harvesting
Been abundantly rewarded by fresh food and herbs
She reflects on the turning of the year
Solstice but a distant memory
The cross quarter day approaches
Her garden dance of thankfulness is due
She prepares carefully washing with herbs 
Donning her cloak, she steps out in the moonlight
Slowly dropping the cloak, she circles the garden sky-clad
She thanks the earth for its fruits
For her life and dreams

Image from Photobucket
Poem found at Medusa's place

Monday, June 28, 2010

It's Ruby Tuesday!

A blast from the past.

We're under a severe thunderstorm watch right now - it's hot, humid, the breeze is picking up.  It is the PERFECT day for some lime mango sorbet!

Lime Mango Sorbet


1 cup sugar
1 cup water
Zest of 1 lime (or more to taste)

3 ripe mangoes, about 2 1/2 lbs.
1/2 cup lime juice
Pinch of salt
3 Tbs. tequila


Heat sugar, water and lime zest in a small saucepan until sugar is dissolved. Let cool.

Cut flesh from that weird mango pit; peel, dice and put into food processor with lime juice and the pinch of salt. Process until the mango is a smooth pulp. Pour mango puree into mixing bowl and add the sugar water; use one of those immersion stick blenders* to combine them. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator until completely cold.

Mix in the tequila and pour into ice cream maker, processing according to manufacturer's instructions. Freeze in container - makes about a quart and a half.

NOTE:  The first time I tried this recipe, I put everything into the food processor and the mixture leaked all over the counter - messy, messy, messy. I decided there had to be a better way and using the immersion stick blender was it for me.

**I remembered! Found at Elise's place.

Happy Ruby Tuesday!!  For more offerings of RT, click here.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Lunar Eclipse

—Joyce Odam, Sacramento

(based on “Maiden Moon” etching by Elaine B. Rothwell)

Death is dancing with the maiden in the moonlight. 
He has made a ring of light for them to dance in. 

She lifts the hoop of light 
and dances away from him. 

He is left standing in the circle 
where he is powerless to follow. 

She has stolen the power of his intention 
with her refusal, and thus has transcended 

both light and dark. Death waits—and waits— 
until she is through dancing and will return to him.

Image from Photobucket
Poem found over at Medusa's place

Friday, June 25, 2010

Haiku My Heart Friday

Muchos besos means
rolling in the hay somewhere
A loose translation.

More haiku offerings can be found here.
Image is Klimt's The Kiss.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Swimming lessons

I love otters.  They are so funny and endearing with, it seems, endless amounts of energy to PLAY!  Someone sent me a link to this video and it is just adorable.  Watch Mom give swimming lessons to the baby, whether it wants them or not!  Notice how Mom grabs that back leg as if to say, "Oh not you don't buster!  Get back in this water right now!"  (You might enjoy the video better by viewing directly at YouTube - bigger screen than what I have here!)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

It's Ruby Tuesday!

I have become a real fan of grilled vegetables - these were some that I made the other evening:  red and yellow peppers, shiitake mushrooms, broccoli, red onion.  Cut them up, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, sprinkle some kosher salt and ground black pepper.  Heat the grill pan to screaming hot and throw on those vegetables - grill them separately and then toss them together in a bowl when they're all cooked.

I served them with sea scallops and couscous.  Simple and good!

Happy Ruby Tuesday, everyone!  For more RT offerings, go here.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Happy Summer Solstice!

Summer night -
even the stars
are whispering to each other.

~Kobayashi Issa~

Image from Photobucket 
John Waterhouse's "Midsummer Night"