Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Back to Gardening

This past Saturday I finally devoted some hours to my garden.

I started at 7am (before it got too hot) and wrapped up by 3:30pm. (Granted, I took a lunch break and hit up the nursery during that time). But it was all worth it.

Initially, my garden expansion project was put on hold because we really wanted to install some drain lines and sprinklers. But I just couldn't wait. So I started my morning, manually tilling the soil - dang that was a work out especially since I had some stubborn crab grass growing in and our dirt is more like a clay. Then I mixed in some good soil and kept tilling. (At end of day, I could barely hold my fork during dinner).

But I did plant some sweet new additions to the garden.
  • red onion
  • yellow onion
  • broccoli
  • red cabbage
  • cilantro
  • cauliflower
  • bronze leaf lettuce
  • romaine lettuce
  • strawberries
  • asparagus
I've run out of room believe it or not, but I still need to put in some potatoes (sweet potatoes) and more greens (like green beans) :D I also scored at the nursery some sweet gardening tools, they happen to be in the .99 clearance bin (versus Home Depot $7 each). I will post pictures shortly!

During Christmas break I'm going to build myself a cold frame (http://www.doityourself.com/stry/oldwindowuses). Cold frame offers a comfortable environment for less hardy plants through the colder months. So I'll be able to grow more plants from seed and not have to keep them on my kitchen counter, I can put them outside to maximize the natural sunlight!

I also came across this helpful website: http://www.thebayougardener.com/ he's also on you tube.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I've been having cell phone problems. I'm certain it's time to put my Motorola Razor to rest. The volume controls are killing me, I have difficulty hearing and I never really liked it to begin with. I was a big NOKIA fan before.

I also hate that it's a flip phone and when I connect it with my bluetooth - the volume gets super low. It's a bit annoying.......so before our big trip to Mexico I was set to buy the Blackberry Curve. When I went to the store I was told "you know if you hold out -- the Blackberry Bold is coming out, super fast, more options, better deal"

So I've been keeping an eye out -- AT&T store is a rip off (299) after a $100 mail-in-rebate. I found it on Amazon for (150) after a $100 mail-in-rebate but I come to find out.....it excludes family plans. BASTARDS -- it's for single plans and first time-buyers.

I'm really not sure what I'm going to do. With Thanksgiving around the corner, maybe there will be some "sales".

BTW -- Vicky is still on. Amy didn't vote her off last night. I wonder if she's super smart or super dumb? We'll see -- the groups are getting smaller (in size and numbers).

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Down with Vicky!

I was watching The Biggest Loser yesterday and I just needed to vent. I know it's all a show and the producers probably splice stuff together. But I just can't stand Vicky. She's just evil and appears to think she rules the roost. I can't wait til she gets voted off. At the end of day - she's LAZY and if you look at her kids - her poor daughter is headed in the same direction (very sad).

Two weeks ago, she told Bob that she wasn't loosing as much as she needed too because her husband was keeping her from reaching her goals. What a nut.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Forgot to mention ........

Here are two more -- obviously for a little girl!

Check out my sweet molcajete, my Abuelita broke it in. I'm set to make salsa!

My bounty!

Don't think I've moved away from my usual crafting. Since it's fall - I've gone back to my usual knitting. I've made at least 8 beanies in the past two months. I left some sweet ones in mexico but here are some pictures of my master pieces :D

I am so working on some aprons, more dog coats, and christmas crafts.
You can never underestimate me, I'm all over the place.

Interesting videos

Robot legs walk for you.

Nov. 10: Honda has developed a robot that does the walking for you
Found this video, I understand the concept but it looks strange.


Oh those filipinos......

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Chapter II

We get back to Guadalajara on Sunday and mi Tia Luz has prepared a delicious meal for us Huaraches (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zy6AcBpY1CQ&feature=related) and Tacos al Pastor.

Don't think she fed us "sandals" for dinner - the dish is call huaraches because they shape it like the sole of a traditional mexican sandal, very much like a gigantic sope. Typically it includes: fried beans, queso, chopped up meat, a green sauce, creama, some avocado if you'd like. It's heavenly - needless to say we ate a couple!

The next day - we were back at the Abuelita's house looking for our next adventure. Our Tia Rosa and cousins: Daniel & Caro took us to see the Guachimontones (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guachimontones). The only circular pyramids (in the world -- I believe). We also got to see a couple of high school kids dress up in traditional indigenous attire preparing to film themselves doing a traditional ritual of some sort. It was hard not to stare, they looked odd - the guys had their tidy whities on under the loin clothes and scribbles on their arms with black eyeliner. Definitely a sight to see.

The very next day - we headed to "el centro" (aka downtown Guadalajara) so that Chuck could see some historical sites. Thankfully, my Abuelita lives pretty close and the bus ride was quick. But we managed to get serenaded by a blind man with a tape recorder and microphone. He sang like no one's business, it was a good time. In the Centro, we went to a couple museums, ate some tortas ahogadas (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torta_ahogada) and enjoyed the other sites. We stopped in to visit with two of dad's Tias. It was nice seeing them again - 10 years makes a big difference, they were smaller and more frail but sweet and kind as always!

That very night we got invited to see LUCHA LIBRE. I was hoping for some midget action but they only had "full-size" wrestlers (remember, a good majority of men in mexico are smaller than me). We went on "college night" so there was a lot of raving and ranting between groups - lots of inappropriate comments flying around -- so I felt right at home :D (i.e. when any girl would stand up to go to the ladies room, the guys would yell: vuelta, vuelta [turn, turn] if she obided they would cheer and say something else, if she didn't they'd boo and move on to the next victim). Chuck took 4 pictures before his camera got confiscated (and returned after the event). You should have seen his face!

The next days we hit up more tourists sites like Tonala (where you buy all artisan crafts and where I got my molcajete [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molcajete]), visited more uncles Tio Cesar & Jose Luis (+ family). Hung out with Tia Ofelia at her house where we feasted on carne en su jugo and frijoles de la hoya. On our last day - our Tia Bertha (+ family) took us to las Fiestas de Octubre (big fair) and we got to see female impersonators of famous mexican stars. They were pretty good, i was very impressed with the moves, make-up, costumes, mannerisms, overall performance.

We got back and dialed into reality - work in a couple of days, tons of laundry, lots of mail to sort, grocery shopping to do, and the need to spend time with our hairy children. I enjoyed this trip tremendously and look forward to visiting with family again (very soon!)

There's too many pictures to post on the blog - check out my flickr page. If you need access just let me know!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

MIA - Galavanting through Mexico

We're back!

October was a hectic month - we started off the month in Atlanta for 5 days, then mid month headed to Guadalajara (Leon, Lagos de Moreno, Guanaguato) for 2 weeks.

It was an exciting trip, we reconnected with lots of family, met new extended family members, visited some tourist sights, ate like hogs, and enjoyed our time off.

Where do I begin..............
Thursday (10/16) we rushed home, picked up the dogs and drove to my parents house. We got a ride to the airport and caught the red eye into Guadalajara. We flew Mexicana (which apparently is the way to fly - they still feed you [regardless of time] but the seats are smaller and I did feel more cramped). Chuck slept most of the way, I couldn't since I was in the middle and the guy by the window didn't seemed to mind. He slept as if he were home, he was farting the whole flight too -- which sucked for me (felt like HELL for those 2 hours 45 minutes)

We arrived in Guadalajara at 5:30 am and found ourselves in the LONGEST line for customs. Apparently 5 planes landed at once, and with little order there were 3 to 4 entrances for the "visitor" line. Can you imagine! We also had 1 customs agent reviewing all the documents -- yes only 1 person. After an 1 hour & 1/2 we finally free to pick up our luggage.

For the following days, we took it easy - stayed with Tios Estrada in their gigantic house. Befriended - Lucas (their cockerspaniel) and hung out with my mom's side of the family. We also got to visit with tios Toño & Marcela. The cousins have gotten so big, I felt small around them.

Tuesday we took a bus to Lagos de Moreno to visit Chuck's side of the family. Can I just say that Mexico has made travel from city to city so much easier by having these wonderful bus lines. Some are more luxurious than others but at the end of day - you get to where you need to get without worrying about directions, gas, tolls, cops with large machine guns, etc..... I was very impressed, in less than 3 hours we were at our destination! We hung out with the Tios and visited the cousins (their kids) and finally saw Abuelito Chema - he turns 96 in a couple of days.

We then headed to Leon - where we feasted on delicious tacos, saw more roaches than you can possibly imagine, got bit by some more mosquito's, and hit up our first BANDA BAR. You heard right, we arrived "LA YUNTA" around midnight (Chuck's cousin gets VIP treatment, they even reserved a table for us). It's a big venue with a large stage (to accommodate the 20+ members in bandas) and the audiance sits in tables/stools - pretty much like sardines. There's no dance floor, but all manage to dance in the tiny areas available. This isn't the band we saw but you get the picture: www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcTVhZg9f7M

We were there til close - got home and headed to Chuck's 3rd Tia. It was a rushed visit but we got to spend some quality time. It was nice to put a face to the name and really connect with all of them. Felt very welcomed and happy to be there!