Friday, April 23, 2010

Here I Am

Montestigliano...50th B-day setting 2009

Break's over. Computer burn out over. I'm back. Just in time to wish a fabulous female a fantastic 40th...WOOHOO for Laura at "Piece of Cake". Among my most favorite blogs. She got me at hanging a turd on the Christmas Tree. Check it out. You'll be a follower.

Sooo, what's been going on in my little world? OK, here goes:

1. Took a beautiful hike with a group of singles. Through the woods, by a river up to double water falls. Not an easy one and this group are real hikers. Like with good equipment and everything. Me...I rocked the mom jeans. Sneakers my footwear. So not cool but I didn't care. Nature's beauty made me forget. Then the guy who kindly drove the shuttle scolded me like a bad little girl when I got dirt on his car floor. That's a post in itself. I'll work on it.

2. Quick trip over the mountains for a quick visit with my fabulous sister. God I love time with my sister. More please.

3. Rendezvous with dinner club ladies, and others at piano bar to hear one of our tribe play piano. Really fun. I even flirted with a guy. Thought it went well. Until I heard from another today that he thought the piano player was cute. (and she is) I want to be cute. I am transported back to High School. Guys always hitting on my friends. I am a double standard. I am only attracted to cute ones. They are not attracted to me. Sucks, really.

4. Wasband thinks he is entitled to claiming son as his dependent on income taxes. Exhale. Here we go again. Does this man have no shame? Apparently not.

5. Fabulous dinner with my favorite travel partners (prepared by one of the best chefs I know). Seed planted for 2011. Finally have a trip on the horizon to look forward to. And a half case of yummy Pinot Noir in the cellar (aka laundry room). Let me know if you can come over and taste.

6. Celebrated the beginning of spring with mint mojitos: my drink of 2010. I will have it perfected soon. Fresh mint from the patio for just such a thing. Impromptu Friday evening on the deck. I love having the place where people love to gather on the deck. Who needs to flirt with men. I am over #3 above.

7. Helped a special little seven year old celebrate her birthday. Five seven year olds getting manicures. Natalie is amazing and just learning how to use her eye-gaze computer to communicate. She was full of smiles. No trouble communicating happiness!

Sunday I am trying something new: Seattle Scramble. A sort of scavenger hunt/navigation adventure. I hope my feet are ready by Sunday. Went for a long walk at lunch in the wrong shoes. Spuds fish 'n chips was the lure.

Peace out.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Packed it In

This is a really, really good book. It was passed along to me in Italy last summer by a friend on the trip. A clever story, beautiful prose, amazing character development. Strangers coming together in a cooking class, each with their own story.

This evening I had the pleasure of going to a reading and talk by the author, Erica Bauermeister. Fascinating. What I loved most was how she talked of the characters. How they made herself known to her and told her their stories that she put down on paper. This is how great writing happens. When the fiction becomes real in your head. It's only happened for me a few times but I am inspired by her talk to work more on noticing those characters and stories that grow in my head. I believe there may be a novel or two in there just waiting to be made known.

Peeps sushi was not made in the cooking class in the book. It was however made in my kitchen this weekend. Something I shared with my friends at Easter brunch. Along with some more edible food. Enjoyed fellowship with wonderful women. I also surprised them with an Easter egg hunt. It was fun to see the inner children come out to play! Brunch followed my early rising to attend the 6 AM sunrise service at the downtown park. No rain. Hooray. Ran into a friend there and we went out to coffee before going home and showering and getting ready for brunch.

After recovering from brunch I got to go to the Bunny Bash, a fun fundraiser for Seattle Brain Cancer walk. This event was arranged by Deb's daughter who has moved out here to be nearby as her mother faces this disease. The "Easter Bunnies" were a talented and entertaining group singing original and cover songs. An exciting raffle followed the Bunnies (I scored a four hour housecleaning from the raffle: WOOHOOOOOO!!).

Then Million Dollar Mile came on. Another very talented local band. They bill themselves as an environmentally conscientious Blue Grass band. Though their music included some banjo, mandolin and washboard playing, it was more contemporary than traditional blue grass.

Their own music: clever playing around contemporary issues like health care, cell phones, organic food, etc. A real kick in the pants.

The weekend also included a book signing and visit with Mariel Hemmingway. She's really a sweetheart. Not overly keen on her cookbook: lots of special ingredients to pull off her gluten free, sugar free recipes. But the pictures are good and she writes some interesting things about food, eating, entertaining, etc.
I also squeezed in a dinner out with Jill to catch up. The weekend was good and full. No time for recovery at work this week though. Lots of stuff to do. I'm planning on taking Thursday off to hang with Jill and the kids who are on spring break. Will be helping with a group of seven-year-old girls on an outing to celebrate Natalie's b-day.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Liquid Gold

I am feeling very rich. And blessed.

Deliverance came in the form of a friend baring the best damn olive oil I have tasted in a very long time. Maybe ever. Better even that that experienced in past trips to Italy.

I have a mason jar full of this liquid gold and it makes me smile to see it on my refrigerator shelf. Oh, the things we'll do together. Thank you, Judy.
And thank you for sharing a few of these and some really good conversation. Olive oil, the gift of conversation and some fresh mojitos. Sweetness.