Friday, March 31, 2017

All calm today and surprisingly few ill effects from the storm.

I did hear a bit of sawing today so I guess some limbs were down.

Our terracotta thermometer bit the dust.

By 9am this morning,  our gardeners had cleaned up a lot of debris.

The area beside our house looks almost like it didn't get affected at all.

My dollar store hat didn't blow away and the bougainvella petals are in a nice pile for pick up.

The pool looks great from here but when you get closer you see it collected lots of debris.  I hope most of the pools will be cleaned up by noon.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

I feel like I'm in Victoria....

Unbelievable wind tonight.  We actually lost power for about a half hour.  I'm glad Nicki and Stan could make it....always a bit worried about debris and flying objects.   Since it's been warm lately I thought a cold meal would be best.  I didn't think it would be a good idea because of a power outage.
Lots of fun as usual and we'll miss them since they soon leave for home.  

They brought great wine and lemons and grapefruit and I see Erna and Marvin left some lemons for us....thanks,  guys!

It's going to be hard to pay a buck for a lemon when we return...

Six paintings finished and up on the walls.

I usually take individual photos outside in the sunshine but there is an amazing wind at the moment so decided to put them up since Stan and Nicky are coming for dinner tonight.   The two "Purple Cactus" are completely new inspired by my purple carpets and the others were partially finished.   I got very fed up doing the small realistic cactus and gave up on them but after having great fun with the purple cactus,  they even were fun!

 Purple Cactus #1 (12 x 24),   Agave (12 x 16),  Purple Cactus #2 (12 x 24)     Abstract  (16 x 20_

  Cactus #1 (top...6 x 6)     Cactus #2   (bottom....6 x 6)

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Another happy "happy hour"...laughter is definitely the best medicine!

This time we got into Trilusa...wonderful lamb,  calamari,  and manicotti...Jim is in heaven with the Italian stuff.  We've made reservations for Sunday for dinner.

Well,  as an after thought...Marvin was the only one who looked any good!

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Will this novel make the cut?

We picked up this lovely commemorative edition at the Palm Springs Library Book Nook.  This author is from  Punjab and Jim used a wonderful story of his last year with his Columbia College students who were mainly from this region.  They loved it!  I love having it in this new edition of the orange.  Almost all our orange penguins are pretty old.

I hope I finish this novel as I gave up on Zadie Smith's "Swing Time".  I did enjoy the first 90 pages so that's further than I've got with her others since White Teeth.   I didn't think Richard Russo would disappoint but after about 200 pages of "Everybody's Fool",  it began to seem rather more of the same.  

If this doesn't work out I'll fall back on some Alexander McCall Smith I purchased recently at a book Nook.

Monday, March 27, 2017

If it's Monday, we must be at Bill's...

Baby Z's luau and Chicken Alfredo....2 more meals to go...

First time at Pommes Frites this season

Jim had the steak frites and I had the "fish and frites"....all as per usual and very good.   Everything was crazy busy downtown.  We didn't get our usual sauces with the frites but did get some dijon.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Automatic movie with Majisto on Facebook

I couldn't resist giving this a try.  It seems you can also edit but I just let them take photos from a photo album I had on FB.

It starts off with a photo of me standing at the balcony of our wonderful hotel in Grenada overlooking the city and pretty much next door to the Alhambra.    The Clintons stayed there as well.  It was quite reasonable in 2010 as I remember.  Ah yes....the Alhambra Palace.


Having fun painting yesterday....

I had four partially finished canvases which I thought I'd play around with since what did I have to lose.   It is fun to just muck about and I'm not finished yet.   And the two blank canvases are going to be purple cacti.  I wanted to wait to start these to make sure the base paint has a good grounding as I'm planning on drawing the design in paint and want to be able to erase easily.

May we all live like dogs and appreciate cats...

Elaine sent me this today...I got a real laugh out of it!

Friday, March 24, 2017

A very happy "happy hour"

We had so many laughs last night with Erna and Marvin at Catalan's Happy Hour.  I think part of it was lots of things going wrong and that made it very funny.   We began going to Trilusa first but it was completely full.  It seems you can actually reserve so we have reservations for next Wednesday so a pleasure deferred.  Then we went to Fisherman's in Rancho Mirage which has  a huge number of tables but was completely full too.   Everybody in Palm Springs seemed to be doing happy hour yesterday.

 Catalan was next door and we have dined there a couple of times.  They make a very good paella which is something you don't get that much outside of France or Spain or in my home kitchen.  We were impressed with their happy hour at $3....we had a very nice pinot noir and all appies at $4 and we had all of them between us except the shrimp...salt cod potato fritters,  calamari with lentils,  pork skewer,  duck fat fried potato chips with blue cheese sauce, escargot style mushrooms,  bocconcini and heirloom tomatoes,  and chorizo strips....yum.

Forgot to take photos but snagged these from the Internet.

Doesn't the paella look wonderful!

Mid 80's and sunny yesterday....perfect temperature for me.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

A couple of little things for the garden...

I used to be very against anything fake in terms of plants or flowers but Linda's dollar store display changed my mind!   Also,  I had this idea of lavender for our front area here but when I tried out a small plant a couple of years ago the bees came swarming.    They won't be attracted to this little fake one.  And of course,  I don't really have a suitable place for a birdhouse but could I resist something with sunflowers?

Wednesday, March 22, 2017


I woke up this morning thinking my "Paris area" was a little too crowded and thought my Carqueiranne Port painting would look better beside the Cassis painting and my "abstracts" would be better in the master bedroom with my new wonderful purple carpets.

What I particularly love about this painting is the hill on the left.  To get to Cassis,  you drive down through vineyards and then arrive at this amazing place on the Mediterranean.  I did do a painting of Cassis but could only manage some of the houses and my wonderful pointus boats in a very naive simplistic way.   This drive down to Cassis is so wonderful I wanted to capture that but just didn't work at all so I love seeing what reminds me of this drive in this painting.

And more purple themed paintings to come....

And then after wandering the seafront,  we head to our favourite restaurant "Le Grand Large" which is right on the water's edge and hope to luck into a table at the front (usually did) and order oysters on the half shell and sea urchin (if available).  The first time we tasted sea urchin was in Cassis....absolute heaven.   And washed down with the wonderful white wine of Cassis that you can only really get in the area.

One of the local vineyards.

Yum,  yum,  yum

"Crisp, floral and flinty, the wines of Cassis are justly famous, though you might know them by reputation only, for the little appellation is often not easy to come by outside the immediate area.

Around a million bottles of wine a year come out of Cassis. The keen local market mops up most of this relatively modest supply, though many of the vineyards listed below have limited quantities available for export.
Unusually for Provence, where rosé generally dominates, Cassis specialises in white wine, which makes up 75% of its production.

Note: Cassis wine is not to be confused with crème de cassis, a sweet blackcurrant liqueur that's a speciality of Dijon in Burgundy."

"Kir" which is white wine with a bit of this liqueur is a popular drink in the south of France.  You wouldn't use the wonderful white wine of Cassis this would be a travesty to interfere with its wonderful taste!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Carpets to enjoy!

We're got everything done now that we wanted to and really pleased with the carpets.  I knew the purple would be perfect.  We escaped for most of the time they were doing them....wonderful lunch of catfish at Fisherman's in the sunshine and we dropped into a thrift store we hadn't  been to this time and found this wonderful painting of what looks like Cassis to us....our favourite village in the south of France.  So,  a real find at $70.   It fits better over the fireplace than my Port of Carqueiranne which was always a little small for that  area.  It is now snuggled up with my Paris (and San Francisco)  things.

Some photos of Cassis...well,  only one uploaded.

Mystery and excitement at The Parker

The Parker (hotel next to us where all the stars hang out for the Palm Springs Film Festival) was closed these past 5 days for a private event.  Lots of security and a "rocket" was installed apparently.   No local news as the event seems shrouded in secrecy.  It seems it is the big conference Amazon has to show off all its new products.  They also took over some parts of the PS Air Museum to show off their drones in one of the hangers and this robot that a neighbour managed to get a photo of.

"Amazon had a secret showing of all coming new products that included an approximately 15 to 20 foot robot, hence the picture.  The security was so tight I had to hide to get this picture.  The robot goes on sale for 
8.3 million dollars in the spring of 2020.  All other products were hidden and couldn't be seen.  I was told they had many drones of all sizes flying all around the aircraft hangar where the demonstration took place !!"

We didn't see it but another neighbour at the pool yesterday said Sunday night his wife heard some buzzing noises and they looked out their patio and were treated to a light show of drones flying around...quite spectacular apparently.

I did pick up this bit of news about it on

In a move that put him one step closer to becoming Nixon from Futurama, Amazon CEO, and Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos climbed into the cockpit of a 13-foot-tall mech at this year’s MARS conference in Palm Springs, California and showed off the mighty power of one hell of a big, beautiful robot body. And all we can say is AROOOOOOOO!!!

Monday, March 20, 2017

If it's Monday we must be at Bill's...

Chris,  at the pool,  mentioned he really liked the "Charlie Sheen" so we took a look at the new menu closer and realized there are lots of new ones.   They really should update their website menu.  Four more Mondays before we leave...just about time to try all the rest of the interesting new ones.

The Charlie Sheen is "red sauce, mozzarella, pepperoni,  salami, smoked bacon,  chorizo meat balls,  and topped with an herb that looks like parsley :)  Add Tiger's sauce $1.00 (sorry,  no Tiger's blood:)"

Not quite sure what the Tiger's sauce is....we didn't read the description until afterward.

A close up of the "Charlie Sheen".

Painting again in my new "studio"

I didn't want to paint anymore in the master bedroom since we'll be getting new carpets so have set up in the master bathroom.  It's perfect,  really.   Close to water,  tile floor,  good storage,  lots of light.

I'm not sure if this is finished yet or not...