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Monday, July 24, 2017

Escaping the heat

Hubby and I made a little trip to Washington State for 5 days and thought I would share our trip with you.


My plan was to spend all our nights in the Silver Cloud Inn which is right on the Puget Sound. We spent one night and although the view was nice the train across the street that was required to blow its whistle many times every time it crossed the train crossing kept us awake most of the night. Hubby informed me in the morning.....we were moving! Had no idea where but I had planned on driving up to Gig Harbor just for a nice drive so we checked out and away we went.....


This is a map of the west side of Washington and as you can see there are many towns around the Puget sound.
We drove and drove and stopped in a little town called Poulsbo. We had been there before many years ago and I really like it because it had a Scandinavian feel to it. It has become much more commercialized but still a pretty place.
Can you read Poulsbo on the top of the clock?
A fitting mural.

Off we went and headed all the way up to Port Townsend at the very top and these were our views all along the way...............................................


So pretty and cool and more trees than you can even imagine.

We arrived at Port Townsend and out of frustration I told hubby just pull over right here so I could get the gps working and lo and behold it was a cute little Bistro so we went in and had a wonderful lunch. I asked the bartender if she could recommend a hotel that had a restaurant and bar and we went with the second one she mentioned called  The Old Alcohol Plant back down in Port Ludlow (about six miles south from where we were). Oh my did we hit the jackpot on this one. Out of the way, so quiet and unique and pretty...Originally built in 1910 it ran 24 hours a day sending all its alcohol to San Francisco servicing many ships but eventually went belly up and stood abandoned for 65 years when it was then turned into this lovely hotel. However it closed in 2011 and I do not know when it re-opened but I sure hope it is able to stay open for years to come.


Lots of little sitting areas

The restaurant
How about our vase on our table..
and oh the view....

There were very few people here so we got super service and had freshly caught halibut for dinner that was to die for. I tell you I was in heaven here but of course there was more to see so after a fantastic free breakfast of made to order bacon and eggs we decided to go all the way around the end of the state and take a peek at the Pacific ocean.

A peak is about all we got on our long drive as there were trees all along the way. We spent the night in a place called Ocean Crest Resort which was down above the 101 sign on the map and in the first point. The only thing I really liked here was the flowers along the walkway...


This one is taken from underneath as the flowers hung down.


It was a nice enough place but rather snooty and very overpriced for what they offered. I didn't take any pictures of the ocean because it was so depressing. The tide was out and I mean like a long way out and it was very dark and dreary. Not like the pacific coast that you would think of with big rocks and crashing waves.


Next morning we refused to eat breakfast at the hotel again and drove till we found an old fashioned McDonalds:) in a little town called Ocean Shores. Our next and last stop was at Little Creek Casino Resort just above Olympia. This place was huge and we stayed in the new section which had only been open 1 month! The best part was dinner. They had a little place called "The Seafood bar". It was a really small bar setting in the shape of a "u" and this was the menu..
Best sea food ever!!! and very friendly people.


Too soon it was time to go home and I snapped this picture as we were leaving..

See the raven on the top of the fountain? He was eating a clam:)


Made it home safe and sound and it was only 104 when we arrived instead of 120 and today (Mon.) it is only 94. We are having our monsoon season.....a treat if it includes rain and not dust:)


 










Thursday, July 13, 2017

Tues. night dinners


Kielbasa and Cabbage Skillet
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • • 2 pounds fully cooked polska kielbasa, cut in half lengthwise, then cut into 2 inch pieces
  • • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • • 1 head cabbage, coarsely chopped
  • • 1 large sweet onion, cut into large pieces
  • • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • • 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
  • • 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Directions
  1. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick sauté pan over medium-high and add kielbasa. Cook, without stirring for 1 minute. Then stir occasionally for about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate with a slotted spoon.
  2. In the same pan with some of the rendered kielbasa fat, add the cabbage, onion, garlic, sugar, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and cook for about 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Mix in the vinegar and mustard; add the kielbasa back to the pan and cook for another 2 minutes to heat through. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.

This was very good but I added more oil to the cabbage and onion and covered it and let it cook until the cabbage was soft and then added the kielbasa back.


Sliced avocado rounded out our dinner.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Just sharing...

I recently attended a funeral for a friend of my husband and I and first off it was held on a Sunday. That was unusual for me but the most unusual thing was there was not one prayer said or one verse read from the Bible. Only praises for the man himself and the accomplishments of his life. He was a very nice man but this has left me with a heavy heart. Has anyone else attended a funeral like this?

Friday, July 7, 2017

Piggy Bank













Where did the Piggy Bank come from?


 


The piggy bank made its debut in Western Europe between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries, and replaced the clay jars that once housed spare change.


People named the pig-shaped bank after the orange clay, "pygg," from which it was crafted.


The bank retained its name long after artisans stopped using the clay to produce pottery, and eventually the name "pygg" assumed the name "pig bank," and then the name "piggy bank."


The individual who formed the first lump of "pygg" into the shape of a pig either had a sense of humor, or saw symbolism in using the pig as a model. One school of thought insists that the piggy bank is fed the "leftovers" of a ones money until it is fat enough to be smashed, and the money harvested.


Years ago, in German speaking countries, craftsmen gave their apprentices piggy banks to reward them for years of learning their respective trades.


This is my hubby's piggy bank as a little boy

This is a piggy bank my folks had and I am tempted to break it because these penny's would be pretty old but imagine what they will be worth to the grandkids or great-grandkids.


Years ago I had a big bottle in our family room where we put in penny's and you would be amazed how it adds up.


Anyone have a piggy bank?




Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Just a little fun....









They used to use urine to tan animal skins, so families used to all pee in a pot. Once a day it was taken and sold to the tannery.
If you had to do this to survive, you were “piss poor.”


But worse than that were the really poor folks who couldn’t even afford to buy a pot. They “didn’t have a pot to piss in” and were considered the lowest of the low.






The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt. Hence the term, “dirt poor.”


The wealthy had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on the floor to help keep their footing.
As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until, when you opened the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entrance-way.
Hence, “a thresh hold.”




Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf, the family got the middle, and guests got the top, or the “upper crust.”




Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky. The combination would sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days.
Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial.
They were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake up.
Hence the custom of holding a “wake.”

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Tues night dinner

Wanted to hurry and post this recipe I used this past week because I know there are some of you enjoying home grown tomatoes and this is awesome!!


Cheesy tomato slices
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/4 cup mayo (real mayonnaise)
1 tsp. dried oregano
salt
4 tomatoes
Slice the tomatoes into thick slices and place on a ungreased cookie sheet. Mix the rest of the ingredients together and spread on top of the tomato slices. Broil 3 min. until cheese is melted.
(hint....start with room tempt tomatoes)


Now as most of you know it is just me and hubby so I sliced the tomato as recommended and then just spread the mayo on them and sprinkled on everything else because I only used 1 large tomato. We will be eating this again:)      Also.......


This is my recipe idea that I also cooked....Two med.  zucchinis cooked in the microwave like a baked pot. with ends cut off and punctured. Cook until tender. Meanwhile sauté green onions and celery in the amount of butter that is recommended on a box of chicken stuffing mix. Slice the zucchinis and scoop out the insides and add to the butter/onion mixture. Add the recommended water and stuffing and let sit until all the water is absorbed. Then fill the zucchini shells and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bake or broil until all is hot.
Note: I used the whole box of the stuffing and froze what I didn't use for a up coming recipe  "Stuffed flank steak".


 

Monday, June 19, 2017

Tues. night dinner

I cooked "Open face chicken cordon bleu" for dinner last night but changed the recipe a bit.
First off I used only one chicken breast for the two of us and pounded it out to make it equal in thickness. Then drenched it in flour with salt and pepper before browning it on one side in butter in my frying pan. After turning it over I put the ham and then cheese on top and removed the pan covered from the burner and let it sit until the cheese melted. Was great!! No need to heat up the oven as it said to do since the meat was thinner and cooked quicker.




I also tried this...

It was very simple....canned pears, pepper, a small amount of miracle whip and cheese.
I didn't care for the miracle whip but did like the rest of it and it was a quick little side with all of it chilled ahead of time.



Also found a great lunch idea:
1 pkg. ramen noodle (flavor of your choice) with the seasoning packet.
1 pkg, frozen stir fry vegetables.
Bring two cups of water to a boil and add the above. Cook until veg. are tender and add soy sauce to taste. Yum!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Changes

Alexander Graham Bell wrote "When one door closes, another opens"


I have found that to be true in my life. As most of you know I knitted for "Babies in need" for a long time and the chapter here in my area closed so was in a turmoil as to what to do. I sold a few items on ebay but just didn't like it. I suddenly remembered a conversation I had with my daughter a few years ago and she talked about her friend having her mom in a rest home that was limited on many things so I decided to use up a lot of my yarn (not baby) and make slippers and lapghans and etc.  Here are a few that have been either knitted or crocheted...


































and I used all kinds of scraps to make this lapghan


This is folded in half...



It has also come to my attention that care centers for dementia patients need twiddle muffs...
sample from Ravely:


and will try to make us some of these as well. Love being able to make things with just a little yarn.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Tues night dinner





Tried a new recipe and loved it!!!
Sheet pan shrimp boil which has not only shrimp but smoked sausage, baby potatoes, and corn.


I have never used old bay seasoning so had to buy that and it called for more garlic than I would ever use but I could have licked the pan lol. This is a very easy dinner and will be making it again. Just added some fresh fruit as a side dish and it was perfect.



Uplifting Wed. 29


Friday, May 26, 2017

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Tues night dinner

There were a couple of Tues. I didn't cook because of one reason or another. Last week I fixed some fried fish but the highlight was "homemade cauliflower with cheese sauce". We were licking the plates Hahaha.




Last night I fixed a new recipe and although it was not great it was good. Slow cooker creamy ranch pork chops.  I made home made mashed potatoes which were a treat and I am excited to use the left overs to make some lunches for myself. Think I will add some cooked rice, carrots and peas to the left over gravy which was good.
ps...I would add 1/2 tsp salt to the recipe.



Saturday, May 20, 2017

Birthday

My daughter asked me what I would like to do for my birthday (May 16th) and I told her I wanted to go to the new OdySea Aquarium in Scottsdale. If you can imagine it is the largest aquarium in the southwest and holds more than 2,000,000 gallons of water and spans over 200,000 square feet and right in the middle of the desert! Go here for more information.




She picked me up and grabbed a picture before we left..
(I am so blessed to have her as my daughter)



Only a few pictures I took came out....







This beauty is a  Piranha


 Caught him sunbathing....


Who can resist turtles....


and these fascinating jelly fish...

Came home and she even brought a small cake, lit a candle and sang happy birthday to me!

 







Saturday, May 13, 2017

Mazatlan


Hubby and I spent five days last week in Mazatlán, Mexico for a early celebration of our upcoming 50th wedding anniversary. We hadn't traveled since hubby's fall last year that left him with problems of being in closed spaces and to my relief he did great on the plane. No issues at all!! We neither are water people except to enjoy looking at it and listening to it and the view from our room accommodated both. I always forget that it is hot and humid in Mexico but if there is a breeze it is all okay.







We could people watch from our perch too.




and this is looking out from the swim up bar


Where we enjoyed these for lunch




One afternoon we made plans to go to the "Shrimp Bucket" (a famous restaurant we have been to several times) and part of the fun is to ride in the local taxi called a Pulmonia.
 If you have issues with the wind blowing your hair this ride is not for you but oh what fun it is going down the Golden Zone and the ocean so close by.  As it turned out the area of the restaurant was all under construction so we got a free back road tour trying to get to it only to find it was closed. I asked the driver if he would recommend a Mexican food place so he took us to one and trust me, it was the real deal. No one spoke a word of English but the food was pretty good. While eating chips and salsa my hubby said "I think I have a problem" ........His jaw had come out of alignment! His teeth weren't lining up like they were suppose to. I wanted to leave but he stayed calm and said lets eat what we ordered. After getting back to the hotel I googled all I could about it and it said it can just happen and that if you can relax it might go back in so he took a tranquilizer and we had some tequila laid down for a nap and when he got up it was back but sore. Isn't that weird?

 

Love watching the people and this couple just touched my heart...
They were watching the sun go down and Mexican sunsets are the best!



The restaurant is all open air and I noticed this flower right next to our table. How easy it would be to overlook it.....
 
This is looking back at our resort from the restaurant


We had been here before but things have changed. It use to be a resort that catered to gringo's but now it is family focused because so much of the travel dropped off when there was such uprising there. The thing that it affected the most was the restaurant menu. No fresh fish but spaghetti and such. However I did have shrimp one night and it was fabulous!




There is nothing like the ocean and the sound of the water. I tried to include a video I had taken but it wouldn't let me send it to my email so this will have to do.


We sat in this little area for a while and there was such a nice breeze as well as a pretty view.



Some guy saw me trying to take a selfie and offered to take our picture so here we are!
Yes he wears his hat everywhere, that's my man.