Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Dog Days of Summer are upon us . . . in more ways that one.  Larkin joined our family on Sunday.  It was a long and confusing day for such a little squirt that involved her first ride in the truck, a new house, new food, new toys and a CRATE!  I keep reminding her (and me) that she will come to view that crate as her special refuge.  In the meantime we are all coping as best we can.
For example,
Larkin could go to her crate to escape the dreaded vacuum.  It won't be long before she just won't fit under the ottoman anymore.
Right now we are escaping the heat by spending time out on the patio.  I'm catching up on reading blogs and emails.

And the little critter is napping in the shade of the patio table.  It won't be long before she is completely recharged and we will be having a romp in the yard.  I hope that Daisy is watching over us with an approving wag of her tail.



Monday, August 13, 2012

We spent the weekend trying to beat the heat.  Now I understand that heat is a relative thing and in most places the mercury soared much higher than it did in our neck of the woods.  But we are hot just the same and looking for ways to cool down while expending as little effort as possible.  Enter granita
 or at least my version of it.  I ran all the flesh of a seedless watermelon (no rind) through the juicer.  Poured the resulting juicing into this Pyrex dish that has a lid and put it into the freezer.  A little over an hour later, I pulled it out and scraped the forming ice crystals into little pieces.  Throughout the afternoon, I repeated that  scraping process about every hour or so.  After dinner, I served a generous scoop into a bowl.  *mmmm*  Delicious, cool refreshment.  
Most granita recipes seem to call for the addition of sugar, maybe some water and a squeeze or two of citrus.   Do so if you wish, but my results were just fine with only the watermelon juice.  Enjoy!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

And so, we begin again  . . .
Last weekend I harvested all the tomatoes that had survived the Great Garden Neglect of 2012 before Hubby pulled out the plants for me.  Save for a few that were eaten right away, I blanched them to remove the peels, put them in quart freezer bags to enjoy when the heat of summer is but a distant memory.  I'm not ready to be done with a garden though.  Our climate is mild enough that we can try again.  This Beefsteak beauty holds the promise of vine ripened tomatoes from our backyard when Thanksgiving and Christmas roll around.
Looks like I am going to have a gardening assistant.  A little background - I told Hubby when we lost Daisy that I was done having a doggy.  DONE!  Loving and losing was just too hard.  I instructed him that NO MATTER WHAT I did or said - he was to remind me of my resolve.  Happily, both he and I have failed miserably in trying to keep that resolve.
Larkin Calliope Estelle
will be joining our family next weekend.  She already has a name tag, collar, leash, bed, toys, snacks, food waiting for her.  As well as enrollment in her first puppy kindergarten class the following week.  Call us suckers  . . . . but the daily drear that has gone on here makes for a bleak outlook on life without the pitter patter of puppy paws,
This photo of Daisy telling Santa what she wanted for Christmas arrived in our mailbox today with a card from Santa (and his helpers) at the place where Daisy went to K9 camp each week.  Daisy is missed by everyone there . . . . looks like Larkin has some big paw prints to fill.  I am sure she will do so with grace and lots of snuggles.

Friday, August 03, 2012

Is everyone watching the Olympics?  We sure have been around here, though I'm wondering some about the prime time coverage.  Lots and lots of commercials and retelling the same stories of the marquee players.  If I ran the network, I would far prefer to show competitions, events and medal ceremonies  . . . . as many as I could before people have to go to bed.
So what do you do to help stay awake late at night?  At our house, we have been getting all sugared up.
I am calling these 'Yankee Dodgers,' my take on the British biscuits Jammie Dodgers.  Oh, I could have made individual cookies, but I didn't come up with the idea until mid-afternoon on our hottest day of the week.  So to limit time in the kitchen, I baked the shortbread cookie dough in a 9x13 pan.  Then used a mini heart cutter to make a place for the raspberry jam.*
All of the tv time leaves plenty of time for stitching.  I am working on a memory quilt for Daisy.
I used a quilt that one of The Pals won at June Lake as my starting inspiration.   Everything has come from stash.  I chose mostly pinks and golds, which are the colors of Daisy (she always wore a pink collar and of course, she was golden.)
In the large blank area, I am going to embroider the words to her song.
I started singing this song to her from the very first day whenever she would cry.  On her very last day, I sat on floor petting her and singing over and over to help me to not cry. I plan to quilt it by hand, that way I can add some other special motifs that make me think of Daisy.
In other news, last weekend Hubby and I took a little getaway trip.  We were ready for the break from all the stresses going on of late.  We headed to the central coast and tried to put our feet up for a bit.  There was some walking all around downtown San Luis Obispo, fish and chips in Morro Bay, a ginormous pitcher of margaritas to go with dinner and a yummy, kitschy breakfast at Madonna Inn.  What's not to love about having pink sugar in your morning coffee?
As we made our way home on Sunday, we stopped in Santa Barbara to take in the Art and Craft show.  It has been going on for nearly as long as I can remember.  Of course, we found a little somethin' somethin' to bring home.
A cheese board made from a retired wine barrel.  Yes, the underside is stained red from the wine.   Check out the craftsman's website.  He does a lot of pretty nifty things with those barrels.
Okay, time to get back to some Olympic coverage.  The afternoons are full of all sorts of lesser known sports that are fun to watch.

* yes, the photo is cropped so that you won't be able to see some of my jammie drips when I filled those hearts.  It wasn't pretty, but it tasted just fine.