Saturday, March 29, 2008

Sunny Days

I feel like I'm treading water here... literally! On these sunny warm afternoons, I've been enjoying the swimming pool. I do emails in the morning, after my walk, my breakfast, my shower, and whatever other morning stuff beckons. Then I may play a game of USA Today Sudoku, and, before I know it, it's 3pm! That's the way things have gone since Dave left, at least. Before he got here, I was busy many days with the play, with the deck, and with clubs.

I'm starting to get nervous about leaving, as I always do. I have a bit of agoraphobia anyway, and this year it's compounded by the whole idea of returning home to our house. I don't really even want it to be my house; it's too full of us. Of course, I'm eager to see my sister (Nana Net in the Comments) and her family, to see my Louisville family (including my Merrill guy and my accountant), and to see my Bloomington and Indiana friends.

So I've begun putting together a to-do list....

Friday, March 28, 2008

Heating up

Yes, things are heating up here in Tucson. It's just 10:40 am, and it's already 71°! It's heading up to the mid 80's again today.

It'll be a shock to all us northerners when we head back to our various summer homes soon. I was reading my old blogs yesterday, and reminding myself what April and May are like in Bloomington. In any event, I'm going to miss the pool, the parties, and the partnerships I've enjoyed here this winter.

You know how I've been bragging on Dave's new book that's coming out at the first of May. Miracle Myx is the name of it, and it's a murder mystery that has some very different and delicious twists. Here's the trailer that Kunati just published for Miracle Myx:

How cool is this? Having read the book, I can tell you that the Kunati artists did a fine job of "getting" the book and putting together images and sounds that give a good sense of the book. I'm so excited for Dave!

Yesterday's Foto Fun meeting went very well. Ione had put together an assessment sheet to garner more ideas and feedback on the projects that we did for this year. It was agreed unanimously that we liked the structure of how things were, and , with a few organizational changes, we'll continue in a similar vein next season.

John got his new leather recliners yesterday, and they are beautiful! They are taupe and Lazy Boy, wall-huggers, and scrumptiously comfortable. He thanked me for helping him to shop, telling me that, without me, he would have ended up with just a $400 couch from another store. (The pieces he got totaled $2700.)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Pics from Milagroso

I took just a few pictures ydy at Milagroso, and even fewer than that were worth a look. So here are just a couple from the hike:

Today is wonderfully warm, with sunshine and a temp of 82 now, at 2:15 in the afternoon. I went out this morning, did my walk, and then had granola with strawberries out on my little front patio.

After that, I changed into my painting duds and finished off the 2nd coat of the painting on the lower deck. It looks good now. I still have to do the upper part and the railings and steps.

Next, I got out my "new" bike. I don't know if I mentioned it in here, but Pam found me a bike at someone's patio sale -- $60 road bike, new tires, and it has 21 gears. I had not ridden it yet, because the seat needed to be adjusted. Pam's husband Mike did that for me yesterday, and so I'm in business.

I rode around the park a little, after Pam and Bob taught me how to stop properly.. and I wore my helmet! I have the beginnings of blisters on my hands from operating the brakes; I'm going to need to get gloves. But no crashes, and no falls, and no almost falls. All is well. I still have my 2-speed (go and stop) coaster-brake park bike, and I'll probably always love it.

Pool time!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Hiking Picnic

Today was hiking day! We hiked the Milagroso canyon hike, and it was beautiful, with flowers in bloom and ocatillo in full leaf. I learned what an aster looks like, saw a cat's claw mimosa, and learned the name of the pretty orange tall flower is called -- Globe Mallow. The hike was challenging, but not horrible for me. I think I'm getting stronger! :)

After the hike, we returned to Agua Caliente Park, where the Hiking Club had assembled our food we'd made (and bought). John brought mine -- the Fresh Strawberry Pie! Everything was delicious, and particularly my pie. I was happy that I did get a piece of it, so I could report on how good it was! My pet peeve at potluck dinners like this is when people buy something to bring. It hardly seems fair that they are eating food that other people actually worked on.

The day was beautiful, and the park, to which I'd never been, was wonderful -- a cool relaxing place with a lake and ducks, lots of picnic tables, and tall, tall trees!
I'm relaxing this afternoon at home. It's reading 86° here today at 4pm, and that's warm. I am about to head over to the pool.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Music Poolside

Today is an orange day. :) The sun shone brightly and warmly, with our temperature into the 80's. Even now, at 8:30 pm, it's still 75°! What that means is that people will be flocking out of here soon, back to their summer digs.

I took advantage of the morning's coolness to enjoy a bowl of cereal and another of strawberries out on my deck. Then I worked on email for awhile, before heading out for ingredients for a strawberry pie.

The pie looks great. I hope that it's similar to the one that I made for a party a long time ago-- the pie that Annette and Lisa loved. I really think it is. After I cut into it tomorrow at the Hiking Club picnic, I'll let you know. Here's the recipe:

Fresh Strawberry Pie

Start with a pre-made larger-than-normal graham cracker crust. I like Keebler.
Wash and hull 2 quarts of strawberries. Reserve a few for garnish.
Arrange half the berries in the pie shell.
Mash the other half in a large saucepan.
Add 1.5C water to the pan and turn on the heat.
Stir together 2 C sugar and 6T cornstarch.
Stir the cornstarch mixture into the berries in the pan, gradually.
Heat to boiling, and boil till thick, up to 10 minutes.
Pour the heated berry mixture over the berries in the pie pan.
Top with whipped cream and garnish with some extra berries.


So after the pie was safely tucked into the fridge, I went to get some more paint for the deck. The part that John and I had stained needed some touchups. The colored stain came only in gallons.

John got a start on this painting, while I took off to the pool. (Don't ask. LOL) The water in our pool is set to 87°, so it's like bath water. I love floating around in there, treading water, or even swimming! But the main thing we do is just hang out and talk.

Today, Harold and Pete were there with guitars and they serenaded us! It just doesn't get any better than sing-alongs with Harold and Pete.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Testing.. testing... 1... 2...3

This font is the very same color as the sky this bright Easter morning in Tucson! Maddy and I went for our walk by the Pantano Wash, and enjoyed the 51° sunshine. It'll warm up to the 80's today, in all likelihood.

The time that Blogger says that I post my blog seems odd to me, so I'm testing to see how far off it is. I'm posting this at 9:12 am MST, which is 12:12 pm EDT. (Arizona doesn't go on Daylight Saving Time.)