Whether Weather

Yesterday was filled with severe weather warnings. We had thunder and lightning and wind and some rain but no hail and no damage. These storms were caused by a cold front moving in. It has been very windy today and in the 50’s with sunshine. Tonight will dip down into the 30’s but no freeze warning.

These are the stems of our tomato and pepper seedlings. Also marigold and zinnias. All bitten off and eaten inside our basement under grow lights. We’ve searched and found no insect, mouse or lizard. Honestly, we have no idea what did it. Very discouraging.

Today has been so windy I decided to postpone mowing until tomorrow.

Rabbit Tracks

Yesterday afternoon Dennis tilled up the garden spot near the house, where we planted the garlic last fall. We debated whether or not we would need to rabbit fence the small spot. This morning the area was full of rabbit prints.

We put the rabbit fence up before we planted the sweet potatoes and broccoli this evening. I also weeded the garlic.

Our rhubarb is doing great this year. We’ve cut off a lot of bloom buds, but the leaves and stems are beautiful. I made a rhubarb crumble for the church ladies group luncheon on Thursday and got several compliments. I liked it too.

It’s been getting up into the 70’s in the afternoons, so Brenda and I are now walking at 7 am. Not only do we not like to sweat, but we also worry about the dogs’ paws on the pavement.

The pink dogwood is blooming. It’s my favorite tree.

Spring Chores

Looking at the 10 day forecast on Sunday, I made the decision to go forward as if there will be no more freezing nights. All the ferns, begonias, coleus and assorted plants we overwintered in the basement are now outside. They aren’t arranged in their final destination, but are adjusting in the sheltered area off the front porch.

The peas have their climbing fence up and chicken wire around the perimeter to keep out rabbits. We are harvesting and eating asparagus.

The lilacs are blooming, as are the wild native poppies. I’ve seen some leaves from the California poppies picking up, and one lavender has a few green leaves. The yards have been mowed.

While we were in California, my library card “lapsed”! Fortunately it was just a matter of going online to update my information. And by updating, I mean keeping everything the same. No change of address or phone or email. I pride myself on being a boring person.


Time flew by too fast while we were visiting JD and his family. Our trip home was mostly uneventful. Our plane left Riverside on time but we had a delay in Denver. It was snowing, 20*, and our plane had to be de-iced. That made our arrival in Springfield about an hour late.

It was good to see my mom in person and know that she was actually doing as well as my dad reported. She is one tough cookie. That was said with love and admiration.

Dennis spent the past 2 afternoons planting seeds for the garden. As always, he started extra seeds for friends and neighbors. Based on how we ate all the available asparagus from our current “patch”, he started more asparagus seeds. It takes 3 years until you can pick it, but it is a small fraction of the price of buying roots.

Things greened up while we were gone, but nights remain cold. There was a bit of frost on the strawberry leaves this morning. The peas I poked into the mud before we left for California are poking up. Helping Dennis put up the fence for them is on this afternoon’s agenda. I will definitely be mowing before the weekend is over. My dad filled the gas tank, checked the oil and put the charger on the mower battery, so it will be ready to go when I am.

Sprinkled with Cheeto dust

Saturday we went to Temecula to visit Tio Pedro and Tia Beba. As we were going south on I-15, near Elsinore, we saw poppies blooming on the hillsides. It looked like a giant had sprinkled the hills with Cheeto dust.

Saturday was Junior’s abuelita’s birthday. She passed away this past year so it was a hard day for the family. Pedro and Jose grilled meat. Rosie brought a salad that contained cactus. Beba had tortillas, several salsas, beans and rice. Pedro’s son Viktor and his wife Shayla were also there. At the end of the meal we had flan, the mom/grandmother’s favorite cake. A delicious meal and good company.

Today we had breakfast at Tio’s Tacos. It’s a unique eating place. A small counter to order, but plenty of seating areas, most outdoors. The area is full of Mexican folk art made from recycled “junk”. The food was also good. I’m sure the place is crowded most of the time, but we didn’t wait long to order or get our food today—Sunday morning. Their cafecita was delicious. It’s coffee with cinnamon.

My dad has been keeping me up to date on my mom. She’s done remarkably well and got discharged from the hospital this afternoon.

We went to the UC Riverside botanical garden after breakfast. There were a lot of different types of lilacs blooming. Some roses were blooming but most weren’t. Master gardeners were at the butterfly garden to answer questions. There were only a few fritillaries and a painted lady butterflies. We were limited it places we could access due to the stroller. It makes a person aware of handicap accessible limitations.


It’s a Guatemalan dish that Jose served us tonight. It’s like a stuffed, thick tortilla. Inside it are beans, cheese, and zucchini. It is topped with a slaw like mixture. Delicious. I had mine with about 3 drops of hot sauce. Based on the food we’ve had with the Ordonez family, Guatemalan food is very spicy.

Last night we found out my mom had emergency surgery for a twisted small intestine. The surgery was successful and after 2 or 3 days in the hospital she should go home. We were convinced that there was nothing we could do, so we’ll stay until Tuesday, as planned. If the situation changes, we’ll head home immediately.

Yesterday afternoon we checked out the California Bass Pro near Riverside. It was smaller than the one in Springfield, but we had fun looking around.

This afternoon we checked out Trader Joe’s. I wish Springfield had one! Quite a bit fancier than Aldi. I picked up some of their Charles Shaw Shiraz wine. To see how it compares to Aldi Winking Owl. That will happen tomorrow because I didn’t think about needing a cork screw.

Cielito Lindo

It means pretty sky and the it’s the place where we ate last night. I had the best fish tacos (so far). My first fish tacos were at a food truck at Loomis Basin brewery. They set a high standard that few other places have met.

Earlier in the afternoon, we walked to a local ice cream shop. I had hot chocolate ice cream made with Abuelita chocolate. That’s what they use to make Mexican hot chocolate and it has some cinnamon in it. It was delicious.

Junior went back to work yesterday, since we are here to help Hannah and JD. He’s starting to look around more, between eating and sleeping. He’s also stretching out his legs.

Sunday was Hannah’s birthday. We celebrated by playing 27 holes of mini golf at a place called Glo. Each hole was a different country, all done in glowing paint, under black lights. It was inside and handicapped friendly, so we brought JdD in the stroller. He slept through it.

The weather is a bit chillier that I expected. The sun is warm but there’s a cool breeze and the temperature drops fast when the sun goes down. Tomorrow they predict rain.

Mi Familia

Our trip to Riverside was filled with delays, but we eventually arrived. We were notified that the flight from Springfield to Denver was delayed. Weather prevented the plane from leaving its place of origin. Our flight went from leaving at 8:30 am to 3:30 pm. We arrived at the airport at 1:30. We breezed through TSA and when we got to gate 9, we discovered that there was another delay. it was after 3:30 when the plane arrived, unloaded, did their between flight cleaning, got this flight loaded and finally took off. We were able to rebook a flight from Denver to Riverside because we missed our original connection. In fact, we left Springfield later than our original arrival would have been.

It was about 10 pm when our feet touched California soil. Junior and Hannah met us and JD was along with them. We were all so tired we just went to the hotel and checked in. I’d talked with the hotel manager and our late arrival was accommodated. Junior had picked up beer and they joined us in our room for a beer and a bit of catching up. Then they left us to settle in and try to sleep

Mimi holds Jaraiya for the first time.

Saturday morning Junior, Hannah and JD picked us up and we went to breakfast at the airport restaurant. It was about half a mile from our hotel, so we walked. JD has a deluxe stroller, so he traveled in style.

After breakfast we went to the Ordonez house, where we were welcomed. A lot of aunts and uncles and cousins also came over. Most we met at the wedding, so it was great to see them again. It was the first time many had met JD, so he was the star of the show. Rosie made tamales, so everyone was was excited by that too. It was one big crazy good time. I’m glad to be included as a part of this familia.

No Jacket Needed

Today started out gray but the sun poked out mid morning. Everything was still sloshy from yesterday’s rain. The roofers showed up early and got the east side of my parents roof finished. Rain is expected the next few days, so I’m not sure when they will start on our roof.

Brenda, the dogs and I took a walk about 2. The wind was gusty but the sun was bright. Our thermometer said 73*. I wore a lightweight flannel shirt with my jeans. No jacket needed.

Down to the final pages of _Demon Copperhead _. Damon finally gets a good foster home and plays varsity football his freshman year. Then the beginning of next season, gets a serious knee injury. Didn’t get proper medical care. Addicted to pain meds. Downward spiral. Happy ending seems unlikely. and yet I read on.

With the rain and warmer weather, our yard is greening up. It will need mowing when we get home from California.

Emptying the fridge

The countdown to our trip to meet JD is on. We’ll be gone almost two weeks, so I don’t want any food left to spoil while we’re gone. It will be leftovers, leftovers and leftovers until we leave. It won’t be a hardship since we have both meatloaf and chicken to alternate meals. We also have lots of spring greens for salads. The big tub of strawberry yogurt may be a bit of a challenge. I’m thinking dessert as well as breakfast.

I made it halfway through _Demon Copperhead_ and am still loving it. It’s a long story and not a fast read. 

March Madness. It was sweet watching the Razorbacks beat Kansas. It will be interesting to watch them take on UConn on Thursday.

The roofers showed up mid morning Monday. They got the west half of my parents house done. It rained today but hopefully they’ll get it finished tomorrow.

Last night Matt and family came over for dinner and a visit. Last week was spring break for Springfield schools. They a big adventure in St. Louis. They went up in the arch, went to the Science Center and the City Museum. Things Dennis and I did with our kids. The City Museum didn’t exist for the boys, but Hannah got hooked on it and continued going there through college. It’s a very cool place that just keeps expanding and evolving.

Another chicken was dead in the pen yesterday. None of the other chickens appear sick. There’s no reason to think Avian Flu. The hens are 3 years old, so old age is a more likely involved. In a few months, we’ll get baby chicks and begin a new cycle of life.