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Baltimore by the Sea

Saturday, August 22, 2015

A Week on the Coast

Guarding the Crop

Spent this past week down in Monterey County, visiting with Barbara, and her gang. Her 'gang' includes Son Eric, future daughter-in-law Alicia & her ensie daughter Aslyn, Barbara's sister Suzi & very-nearly-official-Brother-in-Law Bob, and Barb's friend, and mine, Dru. It was a busy week as I assisted Eric - I was darned near helpfully too - moving some stuff from storage, and had a fun luncheon at Barb's flat with Dru, my newest 'bud'. Poor Dru was lambasted with my so-called best spooky shite stories and she had quite a few of her own so we're even.

For me, the high point of the week was a shopping trip for a replacement of my recently purloined laptop. Barbara had a coupon that got me 10% off the price - like having the tax paid for me!

The last day, more or less the only bit of the week I've pictures for, Barb and I drove to Carmel Valley. There Suzi, and Bob were treated to breakfast for Suzi's birthday which actually took place in July, but better late than never.

Belated birthday girl Suzi & Barbara
Suzi gave us a tour of the condos she and Bob live, in Carmel Valley. CV has a zip code aspire to. Kind of like everyone wanted the Fair Oaks zip code until one of the two following events happened, (1) Granite Bay rose to the title 'best Sacramento County spot live' (2) Claire moved in.

Right after brunch Bob had Lawn Bowling practice. If you are scoffing at the v. green lawn in drought stricken California, know, the condos are taking out lawns and installing drought tolerant landscaping. The green of the bowling field remains safe and watered, at least for now.
Bob is the far distant gentleman 2nd on the left. in the orange shirt
After our tour of the grounds we retreated to S & B's flat which has the best patio view ever. It hangs over a canyon full of coastal pines with a couple of bird feeders. While chatting with Suzi my eyes were glued to the Chestnut-sided Chickadees, Acorn Woodpeckers, Dark-eyed Juncos and even California Quail that scrambled around at the foot of the trees.
Patio with cool view of piney canyon birds
For a bit I day dreamed of living in Carmel Valley's bit of heaven, where I could get in a week's birding from my couch or watch TV as I treadmill at the complex's work out facility. Unfortunately the reality is that single-income Claire can either live in the complex in a one bed/one bath and never entertain company or afford to travel again, or live someplace more affordable and live in the elegant style to which she has become accustomed. Seems the later must persevere as the winning alternative. Ah, but I always have my dreams.

Oh, and I want to show off Suzi's flower arranging acumen.

Love the tiny eclectic clear glass containers.The flowers are bachelor buttons, bee balm, honeysuckle, a rose, a dahlia and others...

And check out this bathroom bouquet with huge white lily, lark spur, rudbeckia and such. All from Suzi's cutting garden... did I mention that before?

So that was my week at Barb's. We're older now and uncharacteristically we get into mini-battles as we each assert ourselves in our relationship. Being older we both think we know precisely what's best and that the other doesn't, but thankfully ten minutes later we're back to being good buds. Tee hee... sure am happy though that neither of us own a handgun!


  1. Love the flowers arrangements as well.
    So simple, yet they make a bold statment.
    Looks easy to do, but I know, I couldnt do it.

    Love the deck, looks like somewhere up in Oneonta New York.

  2. Yes! Isn't it the truth, flower arranging looks so easy to do, but can be so difficult. These days - since most the flowers in my Gulag Garden are dead - I occasionally treat myself to flowers at the Farmer's Market or Trader Joe's. I arrange them as best I can but I never match the work I've seen Suzi pull off.