Thursday, May 31, 2012

5-31-12 Happy Anniversary to Mom and Dad!

44 years!

between poor planning and the last day of the month, I'm just getting this under the wire :)
(and then realizing the next morning, it didn't publish!)
Monday, May 28, 2012

5-28-12 Memorial Day trip

Five years ago this week, the three of us joined Bob and became a family of Coloradoans.

A couple of five year comparisons from one of our first outings in 2007 to Echo Lake, to yesterday:

It was slightly windier and colder yesterday!

I was layering my long sleeved shirt and my flannel and Bob says to me, "Are you sure you aren't going to be too warm in that?"

I looked at him and said, "Have you learned nothing in five years?"

Sure enough, my prodding for everyone to take a jacket or a hoodie, while met with rolled eyes, was much appreciated when we stepped out of the car at the lake.

We took the easy hike around the lake and up to the lodge for lunch. Some pictures:

Far side of the lake


The Loyal Order of Water Buffaloes Lodge, Grand Poobah and apprentice.

I've only actually used the top two.... so far.

Chicken Fried Steak Sandwiches comes with a boat of gravy (not pictured)

Buffalo chili / Chili Burger

these two go for hot apple pie with cinnamon ice cream

Sammi and I split the butterscotch (and the waitress, instead of refilling the cup I had, decided I needed a fresh warm one, so I could be a two fisted drinker.

looking back at the lake from the Lodge

red-tailed hawk on the road down

"share the road" means, if I'm a biker, what's mine is mine and what's yours is mine.

See the dragon in the clouds? 

Friday, May 25, 2012

5-25-12 The New Luggage

Sam is no longer an underclassman! As a celebratory start of summer, end of school, and just because we needed them, we went shopping Friday night and came home with a large suitcase and matching carry-on that will never be mistaken for anyone else's luggage, ever. Sam's first use comes as she's gone most of July to Oregon. I'll need the carry-on for my quick trip to Michigan in August. Then we'll have them for the California trip in October together, and she'll carry them to London, Paris, and Madrid this time next year. They have the wheels that allow them to swivel every direction and are hard-sided but surprisingly light. What Sam will have to discover on her own is that the wheels are no use in those tiny European hotels that have no elevators with very narrow, dark stairways you must hoist your own luggage up and down. We'll see how light she find that big one, then.

5-25-12 VJ Day 1945

It's not Memorial Day, but this is some spectacularly rendered 16mm film of VJ Day on Honolulu HI in 1945. Makes me wonder what our old home movies might look like with the right equipment.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012

5-23-12 28 Days

Not the Sandra Bullock movie.

The camping trip!

Silver Queen campground at Maroon Bells is calling.

This blog includes a shot from "our" picnic table at site #3 about halfway down.

5-23-12 the airfare mystery

Remember that scene in Sleepless in Seattle when Jonah is trying to get enough money together to get to New York and meet Annie because he can't get his father to listen to him? He asks, "How much is the flight to New York?" and his friend Jessica, daughter to the travel agent replies, "Nobody knows. It changes practically every day."

I've got that beat.

So the lunchtime emails included the Frontier version of Southwest airline's Wanna Get Away for the Memorial Day weekend sale and I still can't quite fathom how a flight to Colorado Springs -- one hour's drive from here -- will cost me $86 each way, but I can get to Dallas for $56. Ok, so you're going to have to fly out on a Thursday at 2:00 a.m. and back on a Sunday at midnight to porbably find a seat at that price, but still... in what algorithm does it make sense to advertise a destination an hour from your departure for more money than a flight 1000 miles away? Vegas for $64, New Orleans for $75, New York for $108, but Colorado Springs for $86. SMH. And kinda tempted by that NOLA fare...
Monday, May 21, 2012

5-21-12 Childhood Cars

We were standing in the toy department on Saturday and I found myself looking at the remote control cars fondly.

When I was maybe 8, mammammy had taken me to Toys R Us and let me pick out a toy. I don't remember the occasion. But I do remember what I wanted. It was a cherry red and black remote control car with a horse on the hood emblem. I didn't know a Ferrari from a Ford, but I knew I loved that car.

I started thinking about how many cars I'd loved on television. Remember the Rockford Files' Pontiac? Starsky and Hutch's Gran Torino? The Dukes of Hazzard Charger? The Knight Rider Car? Man, I do.

I think my first toy cars were actually my Dad's. They were toy sizes of Fords, painted red. MeMaw had a closet, stacked to the ceiling with boxes. On the floor, the very bottom box, she kept these cars that I would play with, right there in the closet.

One summer in Oklahoma I used all of my summer spending money to buy four little pocket cars from the toy aisle of the little pharmacy on Main Street in Antlers. Shan and I pulled them back and let them go to race over and over and over. They fit into the palm of your hand and had big tires so they could handle the outdoor pavement we used. My favorite was the silver Porsche.

I had a pretty cool collection of Hot Wheels, but I kept them in a Matchbox carry case that was plastic with light blue racks that would hold a dozen and stack on top of another dozen. Because mom was an only child and dad had one sister who was 12 years older than him, I only had two cousins, Walt and Christi, who were both teenagers by the time I was a little kid. So I have almost no memories of playing with them. But I do have one very vivid one with Walt. We'd driven up to Brenham to visit Aunt Dot. If I was 7, that would make Walt 19. He was home. They always talked in whispers about Walt, who generally hung out alone in his room playing the guitar the few times I was ever there at the same time as him. He was a mystery to me. But this one time, I guess he took pity on me, a very bored kid who'd already roamed around Aunt Dot's house five times and found nothing to play with. He went up into the top of his closet and brought out the most awesome race car set I'd ever seen. It ran on something like half a dozen D batteries. We set it up in the front room, giant long stretches of orange plastic for the track, running through the Super Charger house that had spinning gears with rubber runners around them. The thing sounded like a lawn mower. The car fit through the opening, got grabbed by the runners, and shot out the other side hard enough to loop the entire track before hitting the house again. He sat across from me, cross-legged and skinny, sick and haunted, and he played with me for at least an hour. When we left, he sent home the entire race track and a bunch of cars with me that got a special place of honor in the top rack of the carrying case.

Maybe it was the next Christmas, or maybe a year after that, that the big Christmas present was the glow in the dark electric set by Tyco, which was very cool, ultra quiet, and it glowed in the dark for pete's sake.

But I still loved that Super Charger set the most.

5-21-12 Signs

There are exactly two half days left in Sam's school year and today is not one of them. They have the day off for graduation.

So, finally, Sam remembered to set up a way to keep her forgetful mother from 

1. waking her up because she forgot there was no school


from peeling out of the house 2 minutes late for lunch pick-up when she isn't at school!


5-21-12 wonderful gifts

So after a month off thanks to the kidney infection and then long round of two antibiotics with crazy side-effects, I was back at the gym this morning. And after that, Evan and I took a half hour walk around the neighborhood, so I managed to keep the heart rate up for over an hour. Then I drank my first cup of coffee in the swing and threw the ball 50 times for my oh-so-dependent, seriously goofy, darling border collie who gives new meaning to attachment parenting. According to Bob, he was a depressed mess for the one night I was away. But seriously, who could say no to that face?

When Mom and Dad visited yesterday it was with gifts from Santa Fe, including the amazing Piñon Fudge from Señor Murphy.

And a close-up of my lovely flowers, with plenty of blooms waiting to spring open over the week.

And my new Tevas

And Mom and Dad also brought me a pair of earrings from their Santa Fe trip from the Santo Domingo artists, whose card I was trying to take a picture of with the earrings...

However, Bruiser had other ideas. 

Frisky kitty bats and rolls on everything to get my attention until I'll play.

So we play and chase string, over and over.

And, eventually, you can see the light switch go off.

And then you can take pictures of your earrings without much interruption.

5-21-12 Wouldn't Let Me Love You

Since this blog seems to have its own sub-genre, aka "I Love Richard Marx"...

Sunday, May 20, 2012

5-20-12 Another lovely weekend

After the Saturday morning laziness during the rain, I set out for Manitou Springs for a girl's night with Deana. When I hit Castle Rock, I found myself in a complete dead stop on the highway. The Smart phone was able to show me the traffic map, with its solid black line directly where I was sitting, and the length of the standstill, but not why. And, true to form, it was another phantom traffic clog -- no broken down vehicle, no wreck, no cones or roadwork. We just all must have collectively decided to take a time out on the highway for 5 miles. And then we started again. During that 20 minutes, I did get to witness the existence of a bumper sticker I'd only seen online and never believed anyone would actually put on their car, but we were just starting to get going and I couldn't get a picture of it. Dear Mr. "Don't Re-Nig" anti-Obama dude: you make me weep for humanity. I also passed a bumper sticker with the Texas flag and the words "Mis-placed Texan" on it, with Colorado plates. I just shook my head.

Anyway, I managed to still stop in at Patsy's for a little white bag of non-pariels and get to Deana's only 20 minutes behind schedule. Amazingly, the rain had driven most of the day-tourists away and I scored the parking space right next to her house. By the time I got inside, it had started to hail again. 

We grabbed our umbrellas and enjoyed the walk down to the Loop for dinner. After dinner the rain had let up and everything was fresh and shiny in the evening dusk. 

Purple foxglove

The unknkown blue flower that was also not pictured in my Book of Blue Flowers (boo). It seems closest to blue ginger, but not with the white centers.

We also hit up the grand re-opening of a little shop that has just doubled its space and had live entertainment, wine, and cheese. All the alcoves in the shop were arranged by color. This was the purple corner, with purple grape lights that I now feel I must incorporate somewhere in my decor. They also had green ones!

Playing around in the red room...

The Strawberry Rhubarb Pie was awesome!
After some window shopping and a score of some new Tevas for me, we hung out at Swirl, the great little wine bar with seriously friendly staff and the most comfy chairs around and chatted with the owner, Sharon, for a bit.

We moseyed around Manitou, past the irises in the dark, on the way back to Deana's for movie night

Back at D's Boo showed off his bone chewing skills while D Jiffy-Popped over the fire while we started up our movie for the night.

D's rock collection on the porch.

A perfect first cup of coffee on the porch with a favorite book and some amazing cool breezes.

At Adams Mountain Cafe with their Orange Almond French Toast. Drool.

Raw brown sugar and the little pot of honey Pooh would have been delighted with on the table. 

Outside the cafe, waiting patiently...

Peonies and Poppies in bloom

Up in the gardens of Miramont Castle

Interesting orb of light caught from the morning sun.

And then it was back home to try Mother's Day, take two.

Nick, looking so much healthier than this time last week...

Bob at the grill

Tori at the griddle

Most everyone at the table... with the Mothers Day part 2 flowers

Lovely weekend, all around.