Saturday, November 30, 2013

Sunset in the desert

Had a wonderful lunch on our patio today with our fountain burbling and watching hummingbirds coming to our feeder.

Beautiful sunset tonight…and listening to a Pavarotti special….some early footage…does it get any better than this!  At the moment an aria from Turnadot.  An opera we saw in Paris in 1972….we had "semi-visibility (partial view) seats we got for around $3.  We had a whole private box to ourselves but we had to strain our necks to see anything.  It began with a chorus of about 250 people and four horses on stage.   Our first trip to Europe and we were travelling light.  My most dressy outfit was a red hot pant  outfit and Jim had a golf shirt and khakis.  Everyone else was in formal dress….all the men in tuxes.

A few decorating details

We got the Matisse up and very pleased with it.  Also,  found that the little teak table is perfect between the two mid century chairs.   And I found this really cute little "Day on the Beach" set…(added the "Bandol") so now I have my beach along with my Mediterranean.  And I bought the mini Zen garden for the hall table.  I never had a dollhouse so am having lots of fun with these!

 I've set up my studio in the Master Bedroom…lots of light from this window and easy to move things outside to paint.

Jim's den is looking great!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Emperor Buffet

Wow…what a deal this is!  Lunch for $7.99 (and we can also get a 10% senior discount) and a bottle of chianti for ten bucks.  I was hesitating going there because it seemed so cheap but every item we tried was excellent quality.  They even had pizza and french fries (tried a couple…were excellent)  Also,  vanilla and chocolate soft ice cream and a large selection of fruit and pastries for dessert.

And we even got a "Black Friday" deal at a thrift shop.  I got a pair of shorts for $1.50 and Jim got a couple of great books for two bucks.

 You can choose your food and sauce and they make up a stir fry to order.

 Great selection of sushi rolls.

 Four kinds of soup….miso,  hot and sour,  wonton, and egg drop.

 Beside the beans are stuffed crab on scallop shells…wonderful!

 Excellent sole.

Just an amazing selection of things…this is just a sampling.

Lots of laughs chez Erna and Marvin

We had a great evening and Thanksgiving dinner at our neighbours…thanks so much Erna and Marvin!  A first celebrating American Thanksgiving in the US and hopefully far from our last.

Marvin,  I think you will enjoy these photos since you've had a lot of cool cars.
You do see a lot of neat cars in the dessert and a lot of old classics like this Cadillac.  As I was taking these photos,  a couple got into the car.  They were out for their son's wedding and the car was a wedding gift to their son from the father-in-law….pretty cool gift!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Fern, solution to the geese problem!

In the Desert Sun today there was this article on how golf courses are using rubber snarling coyotes or wolves to scare the geese…it's working!

Happy American Thanksgiving!

The Desert Sun warned us in yesterday's newspaper that today's delivery could be delayed due to the large number of flyers for Black Friday.  This newspaper won't be going under due to lack of advertising…always loads of flyers and about 5 lbs today.

Just the flyers….not the newspaper!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Handyman Joe fixing one of our screens after installing the kitchen hardware and we are done with home stuff!

Yesterday,  Joe got the TV stand together and the TV (50" screen) and the den carpet got installed.  I finished my Mondrian table and the Matisse was ready for pickup.  Got an email that my Mondrian pillow has been shipped.  Putting some varnish on the end tables.  Whew…a lot of work but it is so going to be worth it to be able to enjoy all our efforts for the rest of the time we are here.  Time to put our feet up for a while and begin to play golf!

 New carpet in the den…looks great with the red walls and other furniture.

 New TV and my wonderful table….I am very proud of recyling this into a work of art!

 Can't wait to place my Mondrian cushion in the middle.

What a difference with the new paint on the cupboards and hardware.  Love this kitchen now.  I've always loved the tile counters and now they are really shown off.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Mission Inn Hotel and Spa, Riverside

We've booked this place for Dec 18.  Their "Festival of Lights" for the Christmas season is apparently spectacular (4 million lights!).  And we've booked Duane's Seafood and Steak House…a restaurant in the hotel that gets rave reviews.  A number of times are already booked so glad we started early.  We got a 6:15 seating.  Riverside is about an hour's drive away. 
Info about the hotel:
Occupying an entire city block, the Mission Inn is a destination in and of itself. This remarkable AAA Four Diamond property took more than 30 years to complete and combines design elements from throughout the southwestern United States, particularly the California mission style, as well as several Mediterranean countries. It incorporates the work of various California architects, including Arthur Benton, Myron Hunt, and G. Stanley Wilson.
The Mission Inn defies conventional descriptions and has always held a special meaning for the people of Riverside and it has been recognized as both a National Historic Landmark and a State of California Historic Landmark. It is an oddly integrated assemblage of arcades and gardens, turrets and domes, flying buttresses and spiraling staircases, catacombs and carillon towers. Filled with more than five million dollars in antiques and artifacts, the Mission Inn offers tours of the hotel through the Mission Inn Foundation, which operates the on-site museum.

I see there's a complimentary eucalyptus steam room…should be interesting!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Bill's Pizza…a Monday tradition now.

The most fantastic pizza I have ever tasted (voted "Best in the US" and I can see why)  and $2 wine or pints of craft beer on Mondays…will we ever miss this?  We had an 18 " Heather's Luau…we loved it last Monday.  "Garlic infused olive oil sauce,  roasted garlic, Canadian bacon, tomato, onion (wow…fantastic onion!) mozzarella, four cheese."

It's huge and we took half of it home for lunch tomorrow.  We have lots of new ones to try but this will be a favourite.

Photos of painting

Rather hard to capture the colours but these photos give some idea.

Really pleased with the way this table came up…we've become very attached to this lamp and the yellow table accents the colours nicely.

 Master bath with Silver Cloud

 Cupboards look lighter than in the photo and not yellowish….very bad photo of them actually.  They are the "Gourmet Honey"  that is in the hall and kitchen.

 The hardware is really going to make them look super.

 Guest bath and bedroom the same lightish lavender

Fresh orange juice today!

And from now on…lots of orange trees ready.  I went out my front door to pick these today.  Probably could have started earlier but we've been busy and we just finished off our jug of oj.

Yum….Jim just brought me a glass…heaven!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Painters almost finished!

We will soon have every inch of our home repainted (except the garage).  They've done a great job.  Kitchen cupboards looking great and can't wait to get the new hardware on them.

 Taking a pause with my Mondrian table as the painters had a spray area set up in the garage for the cupboard doors.   It's been a harder project than I originally foresaw.  When I got down to making the design I realized the black lines in-between the coloured squares were very important to get the right look so incorporating that has been fiddly work.  It's looking great and a photo of the finished product soon to come.

Yesterday morning as I was working on the table with the garage door open,  Dee dropped by while walking Bailey, her dog (just the cutest little white poodle like dog) and said she was making chilli for dinner and invited us to join her.  Her neighbours,  Duane and Jeannie, were there too.  Duane is a veterinarian in the Eugene area.  They live on a 278 acre ranch and have lots of head of cattle.  Quite the life being a vet,  a rancher,  and visiting their place in Palm Springs and their place on the Oregon Coast.  Duane does a lot of fishing and hunting in B.C. so knows it well.

I thought this was going to be a simple meal but it was the whole 9 yards….appies,  chilli,  salad, dessert…all accompanied by great conversation.  And we got to see some of Dee's wonderful art….fabulous!

We went to Las Casuelas for lunch to get out of the painters' way and enjoyed listening to our "rockers".   Jim spotted this very cool Studebaker Avanti….very rare.   In wonderful shape.

Jim is getting to be quite the shopper and got a tremendous deal on a 50" "smart TV".  Looking forward to getting that all set up.

Las Casuelas

 Their seasonal special…local sweet corn tamales…I took half of it home.

Way cool car!

Dee had a super Thanksgiving centrepiece.