Monday, February 27, 2017

A Saturday Filled with Favorite Foods...and Favorite Kidnicks

 Our County 4-H Office hosts a Favorite Foods Day each year. 
SPF and another member from our club have participated for the last two years and his Mom and I believe this will be an annual occurrence.  
Depending on the member's age, each is to create a menu, a table setting as well as one food item from that menu. 
Menus should reflect the USDA's requirements for the food groups.
 Both of our members also chose to be interviewed which is a great experience for them. 
In addition to entering the Food portion, members can enter a separate table setting,  a decorated cake and a preserved food. 
After the interviews, while the scores are being tabulated, members can participate in several activities that have been set up for them.
Identifying 34 different veggies from photos, decorating cookies, planting beans and identifying spices.

SPF and Mr. N both entered a favorite food and table setting.
SPF created a table setting that she revolved around the Belle character in Beauty and the Beast. 

Her menu and decoration included books for Belle the reader...the deteriorating rose as well as a yummy sounding French menu. 

She won a Grand Champion award. 
Mr. N also won Reserve Grand Champion for his place setting!
Mr. N made a brownie in his food category and placed first in desserts. 
SPF placed first with her main dish of Chicken Pot Pie. 

Before the awards are given out, the room is opened for all to see. 
There seemed to be a wonderful number of youth who participated this year. 
It is fun to see how creative these young people are and to realize that the art of cooking is not dead. 

It might even be making a comeback through programs like this.
I am one proud Mama and Leader to be even remotely a part of it.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Sunday Truism

Cooking is one of the oldest arts and one which has rendered us the most important service in civic life.
~ Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

Thursday, February 23, 2017

A Wet Weekend

President's Day weekend allows our girls to each have 4 days off from school. 
Just not the SAME 4 days. 
Last year, LPP met us in Pismo with two friends and we had a great time. 
They got the tour of the Central California Coast in a few days.
  This year, one of the same friends came with LPP, but it was during one of the worst storms the Central Coast has had in recent memory. 
I was tracking the first of the storms on Thursday afternoon so that I could time my drive over between weather cells.
.  We were very lucky and nary a drop of rain fell on us until we arrived that evening.

 The original plan for Friday was that the girls would drive up from Santa Barbara after their classes mid afternoon and Hubby would arrive about the same time from home.
As I watched the rain fall and the winds literally blowing semi trucks over on the highway, I told the girls to stay put and we'd figure transportation for them the following day. 
Mudslides, downed trees and power poles, oh my!
As much as they wanted a break from campus, it just wasn't safe.
Hubby even had to turn back and try the following day because of road closures.
This was all decided while sitting in the car, with the seat warmers on while charging my phone because our power was out most of the day as well.
I must say watching this girl play in the rain is fun stuff.
She adores it.

 Saturday dawned brighter, albeit not clear and the knowledge that my sweet friend's son and daughter in law had offered to bring the girls to us on their way further north was icing on the cake.
Once they arrived, a visit to the pet store to hold and love on this girl was just what everyone needed.  German Shepherd/ Aussie mix. 
She was a cutie.
With a not so cute price tag.
She stayed.
We left.

 This weekend at the coast is usually a very busy one for campers in the dunes. 
Turns out with the storms in the forecast, all reservations were cancelled by the powers that be to keep everyone safe.
Seeing the beach, I say is was a good call.
 Looking back at all that we were able to do last year and the home bound people we were this year, I hope the college girls enjoyed themselves.
I think a change of scenery is what they had needed.
And that they got.
And a duck visit.

SPF missed school on Tuesday as we returned them to campus and home we went. 
Again, stalking the weather channel's radar, we were fortunate weather-wise on the way home as well.
I love looking at the valley on days when you can see for miles. 
The farmland looks like a patchwork quilt.
And I must say, the stunning green hillsides are a site for drought sore eyes.
 Home again.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Sunday Truism

The foolish and wicked practice of profane cursing and swearing is a vice so mean and low that every person of sense and character detests and despises it.
~George Washington

If there is anything that a man can do well, I say let him do it.
Give him a chance.
~Abraham Lincoln

Wednesday, February 15, 2017


At a certain age, the remark, "I need to get my glasses" while at a party takes on a new meaning.

No longer is it looking for lost is searching for your readers. 
To see the oven temperature....
to look at pictures....
to see the CD remote.
I'm there

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Last Hurrah

 The final birthday surprise for my Hubby was last weekend and as anticipated, laughter abounded all night long. 
We had both been talking separately with a friend about getting together for dinner for years.. for her birthday, for Hubby's birthday, for our anniversaries, etc. 
As often happens, it never happened.
They have two kidnicks about SPF's age and with work and activities, it just never occurred. 
BUT, this year, I made a bold move.
I asked K#1 to invite another friend K#2 (both Kelly's and a bit confusing at times) to choose between a couple specific dates and we'd potluck a dinner at our house. 
It was agreed that secrecy would be a fun twist as well. 
K#1's kidnicks would join us and have their own pizza and movie night in the other room.
Hubby had been asked to be clean, home and ready to have fun  and that's it.
Obviously, he knew people were coming over, but not who...for sure.
I set up a table with craft paper and markers and the kids seemed to have fun along with watching movies.

The table was set with words given to me by the guests with wine to match.
And snacks to nosh on before dinner.

I did not even panic when I learned a couple hours prior that the guest bringing dessert couldn't make it at the last minute.
I simply pulled out  some peaches I had prepped last summer, added an extra set of helping hands and we soon had fresh Peach Cobbler.
And the surprise?
It sounded just like I imagined it would.
It was a perfect evening with dear, and dare I say old, friends.
Love these people!

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Sunday Truism

"Don't ever mistake my silence for ignorance,
my calmness for acceptance,
or my kindness for weakness."
~Carson Kolhoff