Friday, August 31, 2012


"found heart" ~ Bob Jones Trail, Avila Beach
A three-day weekend... all to myself...
{JPE is backpacking w/students in No California}

The past three months, have raced by...

our mornings have a chill to them...
a reminder that our 
{notice, I didn't say season}
of the year is coming!

marks the opening of a new calendar!
{we work in education... so, it's an academic calendar}

See Canyon Apples
weekend walks & bike rides
community events
baking & tea-time

being a "tad" exhausted,
I've adjusted my weekend plans!

think I'd do a little
reorganizing & put out some

gotta stay 
"in the moment"
{instead of letting my mind race...
to the end of the work day}

Thursday, August 30, 2012


Explorama - Rainforest Canopy Walk (Amazon, Peru)

"Without reflection,
we go blindly on our way,

creating more unintended consequences,
and failing to achieve anything useful."
~ Margaret J. Wheatley

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


"Nature never hurries.
Atom by atom,
little by little,
she achieves her work."
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

someone was busy!

from the kitchen window 
@ 6:15am...

Monday, August 27, 2012


that SOMEONE is JPE!!!
He's 60 years young!
{a Virgo! born 8 - 27 - 52 in Cincinnati, OH}

loves travel
{the Peruvian dust has been cleaned off our walking shoes
& we're dreaming of our next trip... Russia? Morocco?}

is a fabulous listener
{people of all ages gravitate to JPE}

finds pleasure in puttering around the garden
{the worms in our compost love him too}

enjoys learning
{spends hours reading & researching}

has a quirky sense of humor
{sometimes causing laughter at inappropriate times}

loves his family
{scattered wide, but close in heart}

is a superior baker
{who makes time for afternoon tea, everyday}

meditates daily
{gets the kinks out by running or doing yoga stretches}

Sharing my life with you
feels like opening BIRTHDApresent every day!

Sunday, August 26, 2012


"Canopy Walk"
Amazon Rainforest, Peru

I missed SCAVENGER HUNT SUNDAY last week
(due to being out of town)
so, here are my photo choices for this week's words:

I'm breaking rule #3 & using previously taken photos (July trip to Peru).

(editing photos is time consuming)

Indiana, Peru (Amazon River)
The Peruvian SCHOOL year was scheduled to end July 25th... Teachers from the public SCHOOL system had been "striking" for 30+ days, so our group dropped by this private SCHOOL... FYI ~ students attend SCHOOL 6 days a week ~ YES, even on Saturday!

At the higher elevations, we saw some incredible cloud formations... although I took this picture in color, I thought it had more visual impact in black & white. I only cropped a sliver off the left side because my photos tend to be shot using a RULE OF THIRDS. HERE'S AN EXPLANATION of what that means, with regards to photo composition.

A SIDE PROFILE of JPE on the "Canopy Walk" in the Amazon Rainforest. Both of us agreed, that the canopy walk was a "highlight" of our Amazon stay... we trekked from sea level to 115 feet high, stopping at fourteen platforms to catch views at different levels of the forest. Here's a LINK to the Explorama Amazon Rainforest...

Walking toward the covered market area in Cuzco, Peru, I saw this little boy licking the crumbs from his fingers... Everywhere we traveled, we saw women carrying SMALL children on their backs... even at his size, this little boy would have been wrapped in a blanket & tied to his mother's (or grandmother's) back. Generally, the women are carrying other bundles in their hands, so transporting children on their backs is necessary. Due to lack of child care, children accompany their mothers everywhere.

This man was transporting his groceries home from the market place. Not a furious, fast peddling MOTION like you'd see in other countries... he moved down the  main street in the Urubamba Valley (the Incan mountain region).... at "Peruvian pace." I'll talk about "Peruvian time" in another post.

As our summer comes to an end, I anticipate more bloggers participating in SCAVENGER HUNT SUNDAY. Hope you'll join us. Check in with Ashley at Rambling & Photos for all the details.

Saturday, August 25, 2012


found on the patio eaves this morning...
I'd change this quote by substituting
with the words,
editing photos... 
sitting on the patio with a cup of tea...

I DID accomplish
 "some" projects...
{just not enough}

wiped out the fridge...
made a grocery list...
wiped out all the kitchen drawers...
tidied the downstairs bathroom cabinet...
I'm washing bedding!

How did things get so out-of-control?

I checked my calendar & discovered...

I've slept in my own bed, 
{since June 15th}

slept elsewhere... 
{Washington DC, Peru, Mom's, Big Bear,
camping & hotels for two work meetings}
...FIFTY-FOUR nights!!!

Well... well... no wonder there are
dirty windows, blinds that need washing,
untidy bathroom cabinets...

Better get moving, eh?

Friday, August 24, 2012

TGIF 8.24.12

"napping fisherman"
Amazon River, Peru (July 2012)
It's great being back at work...
Oh my gosh, the details of getting projects off to a smooth start...
well, it's mental exhausting!!

pic & quote from:
JPE & I started our weekend
by seeing the movie,

the one sentence plot,
"After he becomes a quadriplegic from a paragliding accident, an aristocrat hires a young man from the projects to be his caretaker."

Driss, the caregiver (Omar Sy) is charmingly funny & sensitive while caring for his employer, Phillipe (Fran├žois Cluzet). Exceptionally matched to their role, it's evident these two actors enjoyed working with each other. I wonder how many "film out-takes" occurred during the evolution of this movie? their discussions about music, art, physical attractions to women & living life make this movie a "10 out of 10"... the scene where Driss gives Phillipe a shave... is outrageously hilarious!

There are two challenges to this film... 
  • It's French with English sub-titles, so that proves challenging for sight-impaired viewers (thinking of SLE & MB)! 
  • And, foreign films generally aren't shown in neighborhood theaters... which limits the number of potential viewers. If you don't have an "indie" theater, (like the Palm Theater, San Luis Obispo), from OUR perspective, it's worthy of a 45 minute drive --- you'd have plenty to chat about on the drive home.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


bike path signal
Last week, JPE & Lydia put the bikes on the rack & met me in Avila Beach at the edge of the Bob Jones Trail (more about the Bob Jones Trail HERE)

set to ride

We started our bike ride at Hwy 101 & rode to Avila Beach, stopping for dinner on the way back.

white egret
The bike path meanders along beautiful condos & homes, an apple orchard... along San Luis Creek & the Steelhead Trout habitat... with the bike/walking path paralleling the Avila Bay Golf Course. 

Steelhead Trout habitat
Lydia exploring a tree root
Isn't it great being with kids? Lydia noticed this tree root wedged between two rocks --- we decided the root was growing upward, in an effort to reach the sun... interesting!

Water break!
FYI --- I don't usually dress like this for biking - no clothes to change into after work, so I wore work-casual for our bike ride...

Heading back!
JPE & Lydia riding a head of me! 

FAVE pic of LYDIA!
This is my favorite picture of Lydia... ah! the wonderfully relaxing days of summer. Can't believe she's going to be a 4th grader?!??

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Tuesday August 14 ~ Pismo Beach ~ North Beach Campground
We "found" a treasure... along the bike path!
a REMINDER ~ watch out for thorns!!
After washing the berries, we mixed everything together!
Then, using a rolling pin, we flattened a ball of dough...
and added some berries...
next, we folded the dough ~ forming a half-circle...
& pressed the dough with a fork to seal the juices in!
We sprinkled the tops with coarse sugar...
& baked them in the oven until the dough was crispy...
then, Grandpa added a scoop of
vanilla ice cream...

exclaimed Lydia.
"I think it's the BEST dessert ever!"

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


Lydia spent her LAST full week of summer with us!

LUCKY for us...we got a campsite in Pismo Beach (only 6 minutes from our house). While we waited for the 2pm check-in, we had lunch underneath the eucalyptus trees (where the Monarch butterflies "winter")... then took a walk out to the beach.
FINALLY... we got checked into campsite 31!
setting up the canopy required muscles...
Lydia driving the tent stakes into the ground...
the zipper is stuck on my sleeping bag!
When the campsite was all neat & tidy,
we headed out for an ice cream...
& to check out the ducks along the bridge...
wanting to enjoy every bit of the beach,
we watched the sun slip below the horizon...
while dinner was cooking...
Lydia spent some time on her scooter...
AND, helped JPE get the fire ready for the evening!
Yummy! So'mores...
an early morning run...
more bike riding...
How did my toothpaste get so dirty?

We have to leave today?
A quick camping trip is BETTER than none!


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