Thursday, December 31, 2015

Neighborhood Memories: Good Things Come in Threes

Over the winter holiday, mighty fine neighbor Mark,  fixed up this vintage three-wheeler for use as a Kid-Mover.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Cauliflower Renaissance at the San Francisco Ferry Building, Farmer's Market

Cauliflower Romanesco is a real fantasy vegetable
Read more about this darling crucifer
Cauliflower dates back to the 1600's. It was a favorite of Louis XV mistress, the Comtesse du Barry. the  Like broccoli,bok toy, and brussels sprouts it's a member of the cabbage family - often called the crucifer family.
Brassica oleracea var. botrytis
Purple CauliflowerRead more

Monday, December 14, 2015

Windy with Rainbows: Part 4 - Off-Leash - Legal- and on to the Golden Gate Bridge

We stumbled on Crissy Field Beach  having no previous idea it's a legally off-leash dog beach! Yes, you need to pick up after the pooch, of course. This meant a delay in reaching the bridge, naturally.

But we did make Fort Point, and back again. 

All in all, we walked 9.5 miles (not counting major romping time at the beach). You could make it much shorter by leaving out walking the other way to Ghirardelli Square, or by parking nearby the beach - where I actually saw parking.

Limited food access on a Sunday. We stopped off mid afternoon at the Marina Safeway, which was a few blocks from where we parked on Bay.

Windy with Rainbows Part 3: Along the Marina headed for Fort Point/Golden Gate Bridge

Wind and Rain as we walked along the Marina, headed for Fort Point under the Golden Gate Bridge,  got us in the festive spirit! 

Windy with Rainbows Part 2 - San Francisco Fort Mason along Marina Green

 View of the Golden Gate Bridge looking across Fort Mason - walking back from Ghirardelli Square
The Marina 

What's a Marina?

Festive Season along Marina Green

Windy with Rainbows Part 1- San Francisco Ghirardhelii Square

 Though it was a mighty wet Sunday, Jasper and I enjoyed a long day's walking. We started out, by parking on Bay above Fort Mason and walked through the park, down the hill (out on the wharf it was too rainy for photos - exciting for a pooch though!) and across the road to a festively decorated Ghirardelli Square. More trip  - next posting.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Holiday Planting and Beyond! Kalanchoe blossfeldiana Packs a Red Punch

Kalanchoe blossfeldiana is giving my succulent ball just the punch it needs for the holiday season - and beyond.

I got this lovely stuff - and quite a lot of the other succulents - at Succulent Gardens in nearby Castroville. It's a fantastic nursery - and right now they have free shipping. So guess who just ordered more of these darling little red guys?

Care and Prep - This time through I soaked my moss ball in fish emulsion (I think Braun makes these balls). Will see how that works out. Going to water between the plants with a spray bottle once or twice a week, once it dries out.

No, I'm not done yet!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Pismo Beach - Fall Camping with Cousin Martha

Cousin Martha and I camped for two nights at Pismo Beach in San Luis Obispo county, the week before Thanksgiving. Overwinter Monarch Butterflies, a very happy dog, and a heavenly beach,  made it a trip we're dreaming about repeating as soon as possible.

Jasper-The-New-Pooch had never seen a tent before. He's a little uncertain

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Pismo Beach Monarchs

Monarch Butterflies clustering in a grove of Eucalyptus in Pismo Beach
Monarch Butterflies
Overwinter along West Coast

* Pismo Beach - famous for clams - is in San Luis Obispo County
* This Monarch grove is right on HI 1
*During the year, these butterflies only live about six weeks, but the fall generation overwinter in clusters - entering into diapause, not eating and flying very little. When the weather warms up, about six months later, they'll fly off and live a normal six week life

Where to See Overwintering Monarchs

Saturday, November 14, 2015

My California Garden - Fuyu Persimmons (Eating and Recipe suggestions)

Fuyu Persimmon
Make prime smoothies and salads

Persimmons started out in China, but now they call themselves California natives - having lived here since the mid 1800's. This year we've had a prime crop. I'm partial to non-astingent Fuyu type, since they taste good either crispy - we eat them out-of-hand like apples or add chunks of them to our main dish salads. Then again, if they soften we scoop them out, freeze them, and make them into delicious smoothies - I throw the frozen pulp together with some pieces of frozen bananas, a little non fat milk and some vanilla - better than ice cream!

Do delicious persimmons grow where you live?

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Time Travel Portal - 1915 - CA Tower - (San Diego Field Trip)

Looking for a way back to 1915? Travel up the stairs of the California Tower in San Diego's Balboa Park. Back to the time of the Panama Pacific Exposition, when folks saw the world through a pair of rose colored  - Beaux Arte flavored - glasses, International was another word for exotic, and California drifted like an almost unexplored cultural island.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Monday, October 19, 2015

Halloween Trouble Doesn't Come Cuter!

The raccoon tribe have been slipping through the pet door flap again lately. Heard that the kits (baby raccoons) are likely growing up and becoming more demanding of their Ma. So perhaps that's why Mama has been chancing it coming to visit us early, before we block the door for the night. 

Monday, October 12, 2015

Saturday, September 26, 2015

California Asters In Bloom - Hiking Windy Hill

California Asters - Aster chilensis
Hey, Purple Asters!
Autumn pollen can be found
Though Windy Hill dry.

Following a Unicorn to The Cloisters (NYC - Field Trip)

I came hunting unicorns. 

Long ago, in a job far, far away, I'd heard unicorns resided somewhere here in Manhattan. But that was twenty years ago, in a life that sometimes seems like it was lived by another woman.

Had I not known that the ancient Unicorn Tapestries were here, somewhere, in the most populous of modern cities, I never would have sought out The Cloisters

And I would have missed a time travel adventure.

Secret enclosed pocket gardens filled with aromatic, medicinal, and lovely flowers compliment centuries old architecture.

Hidden chambers flow unexpectedly from a corner you didn't see when you entered the room, and have to look sharp to find.

Mystic arts ensure that ancient beings live on.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Grenwich Time - Walking Jefferson Market Garden (NYC Field Trip)

I went part way along with Rosalinda when she headed off to her graduate studies Friday night , then made an abrupt turn at Washington Square and headed for West Greenwich Village.  Yah, yah, I know they call it "the village" around here. I was in the mood for a walk that involved more than window shopping, and I found it when I stumbled on Jefferson Market Garden. The garden is one of those hidden gems I always hope I'll discover on a ramble.

Backed up by the gorgeous historic Jefferson Market Library building, this secret garden packs a floral wallop in a compact footprint. Even in September the roses are still blooming in the sunny spots, along with varied colorful daises.  Hydrangea, a variety of tuberous and wax begonias, and a plethora of shade-loving flowers and ferns gather close beneath a green canopy. There's an inspirational greenhouse and pond as well - complete with water plants. 

 Despite it's small size a number of people, pups and kids had all managed to find a bench and a place to hang out and companion each other. I could have stayed all day, but the Boheminian charms of the West Village were calling.