Sunday, February 28, 2010

How I Met My Husband

I have been asked how a couple, both raised in big cities came to live in Bishop, a small town in a remote area of California?
Before I answer that question, I think I should answer another one. How did a Jewish boy from Bronx, New York
marry a protestant girl from West Hollywood California?

Well, my dad was a very hard worker. He would put in a full shift as a printer at the LA Times and then come home and work at the little print shop he had set up in the garage. Eventually he decided he needed more space, room for a more modern printer and other equipment.
They tore down the small garage and built a new one with a large space next to it for Dad's shop. As often happens with such projects they expanded the original idea and put a studio apartment behind the garage/shop. They built it with the help of a carpenter they knew and Mom did the finish work in the little apartment. That is the door to Dad's shop Jules is standing in front of.
A few years later a young man came buy, fresh out of NYU engineering school, looking for a place to live. He looked harmless, he had his elderly aunt with him. My parents decided to rent the apartment to him in spite of their earlier determination to rent only to women since I was 12 and my sister 17.
Mom liked to take in strays and soon the young man was asked to join my dad for his evening dish of ice cream and glass of wine. Then he was invited to Sunday dinner preceded by a game of bridge. I was taught to play so they could have a fourth.
Then he and his aunt were invited for Thanksgiving. Eventually he joined me and my parents on some camping trips.
January 28, 1966

Friday, February 26, 2010

Crisp Shadows, Blue Sky, Green Hills

Shadow Shot Sunday
We had some sunny days this week. Sunshine means shadows and a chance to get back on the bikes.
We managed to get in three rides last week. Nice conditioning rides of about 12 miles. We didn't want to over do it as the two months of cold and fog had gotten us out of biking condition.
Our rides took us beyond the trails in Sun City to a trail past emerald hills where the still naked oaks cast their long winter shadows.

You can see more shadows at Hey Harriet, hosted for us each week by Tracy.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Spring Time Sky Watching

I thought maybe the blossoms of my peach and apricot trees against a blue sky would make a nice shot.
Then I heard it. As distinctive as the bugle of an elk in fall is the cry of a hawk during breeding season. The pair dances in the air, as graceful as skaters on the ice.
They soar higher and higher until they are mere dots in a blue sky. For me, watching them is one of the great joys of spring.

You can see what is happening in other skies around the world at Skywatch Friday, hosted for us by Klaus, Sandy, Wren, Fishing Guy and Sylvia.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Amador Wine Country--My World

I mentioned before that each of the Amador Wineries has its own character. Let me show you what I mean.
I showed you the metal sculpture at Story Winery but I find this wall intriguing as well. The acorn woodpeckers have stored their acorns in the siding.
I think I mentioned that it is a great place to picnic.
Driven is a new winery. It doesn't have the fancy building or gift shop that some do. It does have a wonderful view. I didn't capture it here but if I had moved a bit I could have captured a peek at a Sierra peak.
And of course, there are the cars. I played a little with the HDR on these.
The tasting room at Dobra is cut into the hill like a wine cellar. The winemaker is quite a character and his Jack Russel terriers will chase a ball until they drop.
You can take you tasting or a picnic out into the garden.
Like all of the wineries in Plymouth, Deaver has a lovely setting. We like the wine and the folks who run the tasting room.
I pondered a bit as to whether or not to name the wineries. It is not my intention to be a commercial site. It is my intention to show you places I enjoy, to give you ideas for places you might enjoy visiting.

See more interesting places in the world at My World Tuesday, hosted for us by Klaus, Sandy, Wren, Fishing Guy and Sylvia.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

If It's Yellow Maybe It's Spring

This is not a meme I usually participate in but I didn't know a better place for
these lovely harbingers of spring I found last week in my garden.
Now, I don't want to make you feel bad, those of you still dealing with winter snows. In
fact, here in California the rain clouds have returned.
This Meadow Lark just wants to remind us all that spring is just around the corner.
See more of this sunny color at Mellow Yellow Monday.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Wine Country Sky Shots

Did you think I meant Napa? No, this is
Gold Country/Wine Country.
We had blue skies and a few high clouds this week when we visited.
Several areas in the Sierra foothills have vineyards and wineries and recently
we went to some in Plymouth, Amador County, California.
Whose that peeking at us from behind the tree.
Mama Giraffe and her little one.

Each of the wineries has a distinctive character. We like this one for its great views and metal sculptures for sale. We bring a picnic and eat under the oaks while looking out at the hills and vineyards.
It makes a nice outing even if you don't drink wine. Many have nice gift shops and lovely grounds.
If you do like to taste, most of the wineries here don't charge a tasting fee as wineries do in the more popular regions and the wine here is quite good.
You can find more amazing skies at Sky Watch Friday, hosted for us each week by Klaus, Sandy, Wren, Fishing Guy and Sylvia.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Hidden Falls Regional Park

My Watery Wednesday contribution this week is Hidden Falls in Hidden Falls Regional Park near Auburn, California. That's my only watery shot, the rest of the post shows some of the other sights in this park.
Mid winter usually is the end of our fog and low clouds. Unless there is a storm we can expect high clouds and blue skies.
Blogger is being difficult and this shot won't enlarge so you will have to take my word for it, there is a coyote on the hill below the oak which is standing alone on the ridge.
It seemed to have injured its hind leg and was limping.
Bright red berries adorned the native Toyon.
Recent rain and fog cause the moss to swell to a beautiful emerald green.
I love the smooth red bark of the Manzanita.
I'd never seen this bright orange fungus before.
I don't know what caused the interesting pattern on this stump, maybe another fungus. There was quit a variety growing here, the others were not as attractive.
Find more water sites at Watery Wednesday, hosted for us by 2sweetnsaxy

Monday, February 15, 2010

Auburn, California--My World

After a hike in Hidden Falls Regional Park, Hubby and I decided to go to nearby Auburn for lunch. Most of the local shopping has moved away from Old Town Auburn leaving it much as it was in Gold Rush days. A nice place for tourists and even locals to wander and stop for a bite to eat.
We had heard the old Tsuda Grocery had been turned into a Deli and that it was quite good. It had been promoted as a New York style deli but except for the Ruben sandwich it was very California and very good. Hubby had the Ruben and I had the Veggie, Yum!
After lunch we stopped in the co-op gallery in the old livery stable. I like to see what the local artists are doing.
I had to get a shot of the old fire station.
Old Town is anchored by the Court House up on the hill.

In May the Amgen bike Tour of California will make a circuit through Old Town Auburn on its way from Nevada City to Sacramento.
After it leaves Auburn it will go up to the Foresthill Road and cross this bridge, the highest in California and the third highest in the country.

She more views of the world at Show Your World, hosted for us each week by Klaus, Sandy, Wren, Fishing Guy and Sylvia.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Valentine Shadow Shot

The sun came out so I quickly composed a little Valentine shadow. It wasn't quite what I wanted, the sun was in the wrong spot, but I had to take it when I could get it.
A Happy Valentines Day to all my blogging friends.
You can find more shadows at Hey Harriet, hosted for us by Tracey

The Organic LawnMowers are Back

I haven't participated in this meme before as I don't usually have pictures of critters other than birds.
Yesterday while we were having breakfast we saw a man walking behind our yard laying out fencing. We knew we were in for some entertainment. The organic lawn mowers were back.
Each spring they bring in herds of sheep and goats to clear the vegetation in the open areas. Every one enjoys watching the antics of the young ones. If they have grandchildren near by it is certain that they will come visit.
When the kids nurse their little tails go back and forth so fast they become a blur in my shots.

More critter shots can be found here.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Jelly Belly Sky Shot

See more skies at Sky Watch Friday, hosted for us each week by Klaus, Sandy, Wren, Fishing Guy and Sylvia.

Jelly Bellys

Went to San Francisco last weekend to celebrate son Mark's birthday and our anniversary. We saw the "King Tut" exhibit and "Wicked", both great by the way.
The drive takes us through Fairfield, home of the Jelly Belly. Since Mark is a big fan of the candy we stopped to take the tour.
They have a colorful Jelly Belly cafe.

The lobby is decorated with Jelly Belly mosaics and giant Jelly Belly hanging from the ceiling. They have a special fondness for Ronald Reagan since his fondness for the candy gave a big boost to their company.
Inside the factory, photography is not permitted. It's too bad as it is an impressive process. I can understand, though, I'm sure they wouldn't want to make it too easy for their competitors. I was intrigued by the robots, the tumblers (rather like giant tumblers used to polish rocks), and the thousands of trays filled with Jelly Bellys in various stages of the process.

For going through the tour you are rewarded with a little bag of Jelly Bellys.

Lots more colorful sites can be found at Color Carnival.