Friday, May 29

flickr faves, the backyard and what not.


1. descending, 2. Salem., 3. Untitled, 4. 5, 5. 23, 6. 20, 7. nina's silhouette - coney, 8. raincoat, 9. appreciation, 10. ranunculuses on blue, 11. Orchid, 12. Libero a metà, 13. Untitled, 14. Untitled, 15. survey, 16. Untitled

(Created with fds flickr toys.)

I've been slacking on the Friday Flickr Faves. It's just been so hard to spend any length of time at my computer lately. I seem to be on my computer a lot in five minute intervals, but anything longer than that, well, the weather's just too nice to be shut up in my office. We've done so much work on the yard, I have to say it's looking quite wonderful, and so I want to be outside. Enjoying the yard.

Which I am doing right now because I asked Will if I could try his laptop out here. And lo and behold, I think the internet connection is actually better out here than it is in the back of the house. It's quite lovely to be sitting in the shade, a strong breeze blowing, Simon at my feet and my husband alternately manning the grill and playing the guitar. Can't get much better. (Rocky's manning the grill as well. He likes to eat the ashes that fall out. Oh so tasty.)

This week was one of those weeks that requires running errands every single day. If I don't have to drive out to some store on Cerrillos Road for the next week or so, I'll be a happy woman. But shit has to get done and sometimes that involves constant errands. I finally got decent curtains for my office and the utility room. And we got a table and chairs for the new patio area. Wood for the bookshelves that Will is building. Lunch at Osaka one day. (It wasn't half bad and it turned out that we knew the waiter through some other friends of ours.)

I also finally got all the seeds in the ground. If they all take, we are going to have a bazillion zinnias which is going to be awesome. I don't know what's going to come up though. For some reason I fee like I did a shoddy job of planting. Planted some sunflower, poppy and cosmo seeds as well. I'm feeling so pleased about the yard. Oh and the lettuce is growing like mad. Who knew? So excited about having greens from the garden later this summer.

So, happy about the yard. Not so happy about some other aspects of my life, but you know, right now, it just couldn't be much better. Sitting in the backyard with my husband and the cats is the best thing ever.

P.S. You should check out the Polaroid Gallery over at the New York Times. There's some incredible stuff up there.

Wednesday, May 27

Cooking with Quattrone

If you don't check in over at Brah from time to time, you probably should. Leah (aka Bloody Powers) has some great posts related mostly to Pittsburgh and/or rock. I heard about "Cooking with Quattrone" a few months ago and, well, here it is. Check out the Brah blog for Leah's post about it. And you should really look for all her posts, they're super entertaining. I'd link to some of my faves, but the Brah blog doesn't allow for such things. So click through the past posts and see what you can see!

Flowers, inside.

I never get tired of peonies.

The second bloom.

The poinsettias are still blooming.  In May.

Tuesday, May 26

Anniversary Dinner.

At long last, I am getting to our anniversary dinner. Of course now that almost 20 days have passed, the old memories are getting rusty and I don't remember some of the fabulous details. But I'll give it my best shot.

First of all, the whole evening was incredibly dreamy. We went out to Encantado last summer for the ribbon cutting and I fell in love with the place. It's so gorgeous out there. We didn't end up spending a night there, although in retrospect, we really wish that we had. Maybe next year. (It is rather pricey.) But we did make to dinner, as I had so hoped we would that lovely August summer evening last year.

So we got gussied up and naturally I had to take numerous photos.

Including one with our Game Day faces. (Our thoughts are never too far from football.)

And then off to Terra we went. It wasn't crowded when we arrived so we had our choice of tables. It was such a lovely evening, we decided to sit out on the patio. That ended up being rather hot with the sun shining directly on us, but in the end, once it cooled off and we watched the sunset, it was the perfect choice.

I love having leisurely dinners, particularly at higher end restaurants. And Terra pretty much let us set the pace which was wonderful. The service was absolutely impeccable. Our waitress was patient with all our questions and desire for chit chat and provided stellar recommendations. We started off with a nice, crisp Chardonnay and if I'd written about this immediately, I'd remember the brand. We decided to start out with salads. I ordered the Arugula and Hydro-Cress Salad (w/ beets, prickly-pear dressing, Cabrales blue and piñon-nut clusters) which was so incredibly good. Will had the Grilled Hearts of Romaine Caesar (w/ masa croutons, white anchovies and shaved Spanish Manchego), also excellent, and the masa croutons were to die for. Yum. And before they brought out the salads, they gave us a lovely complimentary treat of salmon and caviar.

I don't remember exactly what the waitress called it, but it was tasty. For our second course we had the Oxtail Ravioli (w/ tomato marmalade, Parmesan broth and parsley oil) because I can never resist anything with oxtails. It was not disappointing. At all.

We decided not to get a bottle of red wine as we thought that would be too much for us. Instead, we went for a half bottle which limited our choices a great deal. We ended up with a Merlot, and again, I don't remember the brand, but I didn't love it. But no matter, these things happen. It didn't take away from the enjoyment of the meal.

Moving on, for our entrees, Will had the Three Little Pigs which is grilled tenderloin in adobo, crispy belly with edamame purée and braised jowl mole-style.

I sampled the crispy belly and dear lord, it's one of the richest things I have ever tasted. Intense. He loved it, a perfect choice for him.

I have a tendency to order duck when we go out and that's what I chose that evening. Roasted Duck Breast served with wild nettles and oyster mushrooms in a cassis sauce.

Delicious. Although if I remember correctly, my greens were fiddlehead ferns, not the wild nettles.

After our entrees, the Executive Chef came out and introduced himself. We were feeling quite heady at that point and the fact that we met the chef made it all the more dreamy. I figured he said hello to everyone, but no, he did not visit all the tables. I guess these fancy resort places definitely know how to make a couple feel special.

We studied the dessert and after dinner drinks menu for quite some time. I'm not so good with straight alcohol so really can't do single malt scotch or anything like that. I considered getting an amaretto but thought it might be too sweet. The waitress recommended Lillet which I've never had. She offered to bring out a small sample and I accepted. In the meantime, we also ordered dessert and Will ordered a single malt scotch of some sort. Before she made it back with our order, the maitre d came out with two glasses of complimentary champagne.


So sweet of them, but I was so conflicted. If you know me at all, you probably know that I generally cannot drink champagne unless it is the very first drink that I have. If I mix it in later, it usually leads to bad hangovers the following day. But how could I refuse their anniversary treat? Not to mention that it was quite good champagne. And we had other drinks on the way. This is when we really started wishing we had reserved a room!

I ended up drinking the champagne and fortunately it did not kill me the next day. I also sampled the Lillet which was almost too much for me, but sipping on it seemed to work. I may try it again sometime.

As for dessert, Will partook of their homemade ice creams.

Rocky Road, Guinness and Hazelnut Mocha. He was in ice cream heaven.

I chose the flan which was served with Mexican chocolate ice cream. I don't recall the other details.

It was fantastic and again, so sweet of them to acknowledge our anniversary celebration. The cookie was some sort of amaretto cookie and quite good.

We were so pleased with our whole experience there. Excellent food and service and amazing atmosphere. Loved it. I am dying to go back to eat at the bar and watch the sunset. (The bar menu is more affordable.) Our experience there also prompted us to recommended Terra as a choice for my mom's 70th birthday party and it looks like that's going to happen. Yum.

Oh, and last of all, on our way out, I had to make a stop in the ladies room and couldn't get out before snapping some "mirror in the bathroom" photos.

It was a helluva nice bathroom.

Monday, May 25


I ran 4 miles.

I planted zinnia seeds in the sandbox
and sunflower seeds near the fence.

I counted all my indoor plants and found that I have 46 of them.

I took some Polaroid pictures and got stressed out because
both my SX-70 cameras caused me to lose about 5 shots.
One camera eats film sometimes,
the other has a mirror that locks up.
My film supply is not endless.

I brought home cut peonies from mom and dad's garden. I love peonies.

I went downtown with Will to see my mom in the fashion show at the new museum, but we missed it because the line to get in was so long.

I did laundry.

I finished knitting a small shawl for myself, made with the beautiful hand spun yarn that Sheryl gave me awhile back.

I knocked my bicycle over in the utility room and cursed a lot.

I organized the rocks in the back yard around the new paving stones. And I have to say, I did quite a nice job. It looks good back there.

I made guacamole for the first time in forever.

I spent $80 at Whole Foods. I'm so good at guessing what our groceries will cost these days just by eyeballing what we have on the conveyor belt. Today I said, "uggghhh, it's going to be eighty dollars." It was $80.95. Yes, we spend all our money on food.

Wednesday, May 20

Garden update.

Last week I worked in the yard for a few days and then between the lack of sleep and my overall foul mood, I had to take a break. I spent a few days knitting baby hats and watching movies. It was nice. Much as I love to garden, I seem to get burnt out more quickly these days.

Anyway, this week I had to get back to it. So I spent most of the afternoon planting vegetables. (Yeah, I know, it's really smart to work outside during the hottest part of the day.) I planted two tomato plants in the side yard again as they seem to do best there. We wanted a cherry tomato plant as well, but no more room in the side yard. And we didn't have much luck with vegetables in the back yard last year. So we decided to try a container cherry tomato plant. Hopefully it works out.

I planted pepper plants today too. There wasn't a great selection at Home Depot or the local nursery which was kind of disappointing. I like different types of sweet peppers, but they mostly had green bell peppers which I did not want at all. We had way too many of them last year after planting pepper plants that had been mislabeled. We did find one sweet yellow pepper plant, but alas, when I got it home, I discovered that it was actually a yellow banana pepper plant. I also ended up with some cubanello peppers and jalapeños. It's funny, in Pittsburgh, my jalapeños grew like crazy, but the past two years here in Santa Fe, no luck at all with them. Hoping that this year will be the year. I make a tasty guacamole with fresh jalapeños. Oh and of course I put in eggplant again. That's one of my faves from the garden. I would love to plant more, but we just don't have the space. As it is, I know I have everything planted too close together, but whatever, we'll see what happens. I may have to try to squeeze in a sweet pepper plant somewhere.

Last week I planted some greens for the first time. Romaine lettuce, some other lettuce and collards. No idea if they'll take or not. On the flower front, I transplanted my echinacea to a different spot and added a few more plants. Echinacea is one of my faves and does well in this climate. Filled the two front beds with zinnias. Put in some dahlias near the coyote fence, more echinacea in the back yard bed that nothing does well in, and a nice little herb garden outside the back door. I also transplanted one of my lilac bushes and yarrow. Both are looking a little sad, but I think they'll make it.

All I really have left to do is get the seeds planted and hopefully that will happen tomorrow. Although now that I think about it, if it actually rains tomorrow, all the seeds might get washed away. Perhaps I should wait. Any thoughts? I think the yard is going to look fantastic this year, it's just so much work.

My tiredness is taking over now and I can't focus on this big screen anymore. Plus I still have to water. Looking forward to the two hour finale of Criminal Minds.

How's your garden coming along?

Tuesday, May 19

Looking good at 33.

The Birthday Boy

The birthday boy photo from last week. Yes, I am behind on everything. That's what happens when insomnia strikes. My productivity levels drop pretty drastically. I have decided to blame the lack of sleep and all the other recent frustrations on Mercury being in retrograde.

Thursday, May 14

And the saga continues.

I know some of you are waiting to hear about our anniversary dinner and I swear I will get to it, but I just don't have the energy right now.

Sleep? Not my friend lately. Totally avoiding me.

Actually last night, out of desperation, I took a sleeping pill. A whole one, not half like last time. Slept from 9:30 until 4:00am when Simon threw the gate opener on the floor and woke me up. I felt totally woozy but managed to get up and let the cats out. Fell back asleep until 6:00am when my alarm went off. I could barely peel my eyes open. My legs felt like rubber and I could not think straight. I thought maybe it would wear off after awhile, but nope, I felt like crap. I felt just as bad if not worse than when I don't sleep at all. Tired, dizzy, nauseous. Awful. I basically had an emotional meltdown and have been surly all day.

So sleeping pills? Not my friends either. I didn't really want to be friends with them anyway, but I thought maybe I could use them as needed.

I think sleeping pills are bunk. What's the point of getting eight hours of sleep if you still feel like crap? I don't get it.

Here's hoping I sleep tonight.

On the Encantado front, we went out there with my dad for a meeting with a party planner. We're going to have my mom's 70th birthday party there in August. I just love it out there so much. The party is going to be fabulous. I also can't wait to go back and eat in the bar which is along the lines of the Rio Chama bar prices but has much better views.

We grabbed lunch at Tune Up before running some other errands and it was excellent. We shared a BLT and their steak sandwich special. Both were amazing and way better than Flying Star. And I see that they are open for dinner now. Excellent!

Right now I can barely keep my eyes open. I'm awaiting Will to arrive home with the dry mustard that I need for the cole slaw. We're having hot dogs and cole slaw for dinner. And then sleep for dessert. And more sleep. Please.

Tuesday, May 12

The cats are skating on thin ice.

And it's getting thinner every night. Rocky cried from 1:00 AM until about 4:00 AM when I finally gave in and let both cats out.

I just about lost it. Seriously.

I just need some goddamn sleep.

Monday, May 11

Wrapping it all up.

The cats are going to be shipped off to reform school. Seriously. Simon just came in here and scratched the hell out of my arm because he wants to eat breakfast NOW. They are so bad.

Here are the rest of my fave submissions to Spring 'Roid Week.

[Allium on Artistic TZ]

[Ranunculus is one of my favorite flowers. And I can spell it now!]

My love.
[My sweet husband on our anniversary. And mom's lilacs which are in full bloom right now and so beautiful. I love lilacs too.]

[Fifth anniversary.]

Anniversary sunset.
[Sunset while having our anniversary dinner at Terra Restaurant.]

I have to work again today, but hopefully I'll find some time to tell you about our dinner.

Happy Monday!

Sunday, May 10

My 'Roid Week

Hi hi hello. I'm totally behind on posting because I've been working at the shop and it doesn't leave me much time for the other stuff. 'Roid Week was great and I was quite pleased with most of my submissions to the pool. Here are a few of my faves from the first day or two.

[Me and my boy Rocky. And my awesome bicycle.]

[Finally the Artistic TZ films works for me!]

Let's go for a ride.
[Double exposures are always fun and I think this one turned out quite well.]

[Super pleased that my new SX-70 Alpha works so well without the ND filter.]

A few more tomorrow and then I still want to tell you about our magical anniversary dinner!

spring 'roid week, day five!


1. nothing on, 2. Trixie and Coco, 3. and finally..., 4. Where once was a wedding..., 5. Untitled, 6. A week in Polaroid, 7. Untitled, 8. our lady of the forsythia, 9. Untitled, 10. tree on friday, 11. catblur, 12. Through the Looking Glass, 13. Untitled, 14. Untitled, 15. Untitled, 16. Strawberry Shortcake, 17. mailboxes. las cruces, nm., 18. Untitled, 19. new-108, 20. heart flower star, 21. Untitled, 22. Hi there., 23. On The Last Day (No. 11), 24. Untitled, 25. Untitled



1. Untitled, 2. grass is greener, 3. ., 4. Liquorice pizza, 5. It's 'Roid Week!, 6. allineed, 7. red plus white, 8. i saved a seat for you, 9. violets, 10. For Roid Week 2009, No.14, 11. Polaroid Has It's Own Special Kind of Lightning, 12. hello........., 13. Untitled, 14. me, 15. Hens and Chickens, 16. Looking for an exit, 17. x2FruRubRe3T, 18. kaleidoscope, 19. camelia path, 20. Untitled, 21. **, 22. For Roid Week 2009, No.15 and out

Created with fds flickr toys.

The final count: 1,248 members and 3,635 Polaroid photos in the pool. I think that's pretty damn impressive. Last year's Spring 'Roid Week had 2,084 photos. This year brought over a thousand more photos in spite of the discontinuation and rising prices of Polaroid film. It blows my mind.

Now go take some more Polaroid pictures!

Tuesday, May 5

Dear Brett Favre,

I like you Brett, I really do. You've got a great arm and your antics are pretty damn hilarious sometimes. But you know what, you need to stay retired. You've retired twice now, let's make this one stick. Please oh please don't come out of retirement and play for the Minnesota Vikings. I mean, really, the fact that you are even considering coming out of retirement is ridiculous. You're done. Sit back and enjoy it. Hang out with the family. Start writing your induction into the Hall of Fame speech. Make some more commercials. Whatever.

No more football Brett.

spring 'roid week, day one!


1. 'roid week 1, 2. Saline Range, 3. Untitled, 4. Tori, in the garden, 5. Kirsty., 6. almost done, 7. Untitled, 8. My neighbour is sunbathing topless again..., 9. Bodie Trailer, 10. , 11. Untitled, 12. a good day to die, 13. Balloons, 14. Untitled, 15. second skin, 16. Small and sweet, 17. , 18. Untitled, 19. cloudy, overcast, colorful, 20. Untitled, 21. 46 / 365, 22. Untitled, 23. In the Sky, 24. Untitled, 25. A mystery that deepens, 26. Chimayó, 27. _, 28. purple posey, 29. -, 30. Thick Skin Cracks Too, 31. cherry branches & sky, 32. Bottles on My Windowsill, 33. furry leaves

Created with fds flickr toys.

Check out the 'Roid Week pool too! There are already 1,071 members and almost 900 photos. Absolutely amazing.

Also interesting, this post about the Polaroid House.

Monday, May 4

Starting the week

with a hangover is not such a good idea.

Well, in fact, it was never an idea that I had. It just happened.

I'm doing my best to push through it because I have a lot to do today.

Water outside.
Water inside.
Finish laundry.
Knit another bag for felting.
Take some Polaroid pictures.
Scan some Polaroid pictures.

It's not a particularly daunting list, but I'm moving slowly and not particularly focused.

Oh and I'm also going to be looking at pictures over here all day.

Happy 'Roid Week!

Sunday, May 3

Who knew bookmarks could be so fun?


I don't normally buy bookmarks, but I just couldn't resist the kittens on this one. They run forward and back when you move the bookmark. With the waving flowers in the background, it's kinda psychedelic. And totally mesmerizing. I love it.

I also love my instant love button that I am sporting on my new blue hoodie. My love for it is twofold. One, I love Polaroid and instant pictures (duh), and two, it reminds me of my friend Jami's first published book of short stories.

Get your own awesome buttons at lolabot!