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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Pumpkin Goodness

"My favorite word is 'pumpkin.' You are a pumpkin. Or you are not. I am."

~Harrison E. Salisbury

Pumpkins. I LOVE pumpkins. I love the taste of them. I love the nutrition of them. I love that they make an amazing air freshner! True story... Alan and I purchased a new car back in the mid 1990's. A silver KIA Sephia. It was a great car, and we liked it very much, except for one thing... it smelled! Bad! The odor began a couple days after we purchased it. We took it back to the dealership, and they tried, but never found the source of the terrible odor. It was like the one episode of Seinfeld was written about us! 8 months goes by, and we had tried every cleaner known to man, with no luck in ridding the car of that awful smell. Finally we gave up and resigned ourselves to the fact that our car simply had

 What can you do?

 A couple months later came Autumn, and with it, all those lovely spices, leaves, pumpkins, and apples. It was AUTUMN and we learned to paid no attention to the smell. We go used to it. Then one day, about six months later, we noticed that the odor was, in fact, gone. It had finally run it's course. Yay! Or had it? You see, we found something strange in the trunk of our car, on Easter Sunday no less, buried deep beneath some papers and car cleaning cloths was a pumpkin, which had been long forgotten from last Autumn. Not a big pumpkin, but a pumpkin all the same. It was pretty gross to look at, but a dream to clean up, and it had, apparently, neutralized the offending smell of our beautiful silver KIA,
 in the months since Halloween!
After that, we occasionally bought small pumpkins, cut the top off, cleaned it out, and put it down in a piece of Tupperware, to hold it in tight, and put it under the passenger side seat, to let it do it's thing. We change it about once a month or so. You can also rub cinnamon or any kind of spice into the the inside walls of the pumpkin to have a nice spiced scent.If you want it to last longer, don't cut the pumpkin, just let it age naturally.

Apple Hill Pumpkin Gallery


Leaf Of The Day
Great Pumpkin Resources

All About Pumpkins

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Monday, October 20, 2014

The 17 Mile Drive In October

"The two girls grew up at the edge of the ocean and knew it was paradise,
 and better than Eden, which was only a garden."

~~Eve Babitz, 
Sex And Rage: Advice To Young Ladies Eager For A Good Time: A Novel

It's been a couple years since Alan and I drove down the lovely 17 Mile Drive that borders Pacific Grove/Monterey/Carmel. I know I go on and on about how much I love the San Francisco Bay, and I do, but the beauty of the Monterey Bay is not to be taken lightly. It is amazingly beautiful, in fact... it stuns me! No wonder so many have found great creative inspiration here. I know I do!

17 Mile Drive Gallery

A lovely golden sunset to end a perfect Monterey Day!

Leaf Of The Day
Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Flutterby On An October Day

"A fallen blossom
Returning to the bough, I thought...
But no, a butterfly."

~Arakida Moritake, 
Traditional Japanese Poetry

We visited the Pacific Grove Monarch Sanctuary yesterday, and it was it's usual beautiful, ethereal experience. The Monarch count was way down, in fact the lowest I remember it being, but the ones that were there were quite active. It always makes me feel good to visit there, and just relax and let go of whatever is sitting on my soul. It's an amazing experience! Perfect for the weary soul on vacation.

Monarch Gallery 2014


Leaf Of The Day
Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Trick Or Treat

"The strange thing is, this truly horrifying experience planted a seed deep within my heart that germinated and grew into a desire that, I have to admit, I've never completely overcome."

~Kathi Daley
Halloween Hijinks

I spotted this festive fellow? in Placerville earlier this week. I am guessing that because of the time of year the mattress is in costume. Sure, that's it, it's a mattress masquerading as a creepy guy you meet while speed dating. Or perhaps it's a ghost... you know... a futon phantom! Or... or... maybe it's the ghost of the mattress of that belonged to that one ex-boyfriend I had, whose mother gave us food poisoning (on purpose) to scare off the women her son took a fancy to.

Yep, that's right, she did it on purpose, and she also deliberately gave salmonella to her own son! He had to burn his mattress, for obvious reasons, use your imagination about what a tainted Thanksgiving Turkey dinner, served on a hot June day, is like. Of course it didn't help that she gave him muscle relaxers so he would "feel better."

Like the Stephen King book... Sometimes They Comeback.

It's only spooky because it's true.

(Insert Halloween Scream Here)

And Now... 

The Leaf Of The Day

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Friday, October 17, 2014

Natural As Apples...

"Stories should be natural as apples, brief as lust, long as thought."

~Leonard Michaels


Earlier this week, Alan and I made our annual trek to Apple Hill. Nestled just above Sacramento, and slightly north/west of Placerville, Apple Hill consists of 50 independent ranches featuring as many different kind of apples as you can name, and the amazing desserts that can be made from them. Pies, tarts, turnovers, and my personal favorite... Apple Cider donuts!

Especially the ones made at Rainbow Farms!
They are the best donuts on earth.

The good folks at Rainbow Farms make them when ordered, so each new order is always fresh from the deep fryer, and cooked to perfection! Slightly crispy on the outside, sweet apple and spice on the inside, it's autumn goodness melting in your mouth! We look forward to these donuts every year, and now it just wouldn't be autumn without them! If there is a heaven, these donuts will be there!

An Apple A Day Keeps The Doctor Away

If donuts don't happen to be your thing, you can always pay a visit to Denver Dan's Ranch, and partake of the amazing pies,
 tarts and turnovers.


And if dessert really just isn't for you, well then, there are all kinds of wineries and spas where you can relax your cares away
 on a cool autumn day!

Apple Hill is open until just before Christmas, so check each farm for their hours and days of operation. You can also cut your own Christmas trees on many of the ranches as well! Just click the link at the top of this post to be redirected to the official website!

Leaf Of The Day

Mood: Happy
~Me :)

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Highway 50

"The earth has music for those who listens."

~George Santayana

On our visit to Apple Hill earlier this week, we decided to take a ride north, at least half way to Lake Tahoe. Just to take in some autumn color, unfortunately, there was very little color to be found. It seems what the drought hadn't destroyed, the fires had. Still, its a good bet that if we visit again this month, and go a little higher this time, into Nevada, we might be able to see some leaves putting on a show. At least I hope so! The lack of the usual Sierra runoff made me sad too. There are several vistas positioned along HWY 50 where you can pull over, step out for a few minutes and take photos of all that lovely melted snow rushing along the creek bed. I remember years when you could hear the rushing water before your opened your car door. Not the other day. It was quiet. Too quiet.
I miss the music.

We'll see what our next trip brings!

Leaf Of The Day

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

An Apple Hill Bee And A Placerville Leaf

"An apple tree is just like a person. In order to thrive, it needs companionship that's similar to it
 in some ways, but quite different than others."

~Jeffery Stepakoff

Here are the first photos from our trip to Apple Hill. We had an amazing time, but I was a little sad there wasn't more autumn color. The whole area felt... well... a bit sad. I suppose it's understandable, given the situation with the drought and wild fires California has been experiencing. Oh but one thing hasn't changed... the amazing Apple Cider donuts from Rainbow Orchards.

Life affirming delicious!

But I will tell you all about them tomorrow!

Stay Tuned!

The Leaf Of The Day

Placerville, California
October 14th 2014

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Off To The Foothills...

"In the mountains the shortest way is from peak to peak; 
but for that you must have long legs."

~Friedrich Nietzsche

That's not a picture of the Sierra Foothills... is it? Well, see, we visited the beach at Pacifica last week, and it was so gorgeous and serene I thought it would be perfect for this post. Not that the Sierra Foothills isn't amazingly serene... it is... but I thought I would wait to post some new photos of my meanderings, rather than pull one from the archives to show you where I have been in years past and plan to be today. I say plan to be because there have been a lot of fires near where I plan to go, and, well, best laid plans and all that.

So wish me luck.

Okay, off to the foothills. 

Watch my Twitter account tomorrow for real time pics!

Leaf Of The Day

Mood: Happy

~Me :)

Monday, October 13, 2014

24 Years

"To be fully seen by someone, then, and loved anyhow...
 this is a human offering that can border on miraculous."

~Elizabeth Gilbert,
 Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace With Marriage

Today is our 24th Wedding Anniversary!

Strange man... how in the world did you ever put up with me
 for that long?

Well, whatever the reason, I don't need to know, but I thank God for it!

I love you Alan!

Happy Anniversary!

And Now... The Leaf Of The Day...

Mood: Happy

~Me :)