’08 July

Sherman LandG, Vedanta Temple, Hollyhock House, Rome’s school, Lang Lang, Hiromi, Mariachi! Point Vicente Lighthouse, and various At The Beach.

We had ourselves a…

July 29

We had ourselves a little shaker today…no damage anywhere to speak of…it was a 5.4 out in Chino Hills.

Here’s what I did: 1) cast my eyes upward and took a sturdy striding position…’is this the big one?’ 2) decided that hmmm this isn’t the big one but I should go outside 3) realized I’m standing outside barefoot.

I allowed myself a little chuckle having broken earthquake Rule Number ONE, Put on Your SHOES. It would be mightily embarrassing, me Cal Gal born and bred, to be caught in the middle of the big one with torn and bloody feet having forgotten to put on my Shoes.

Angela invited me to…

July 27

Angela invited me to join her and a few of the Play Group Moms at a Williams-Sonoma demonstration. We learned about choosing and handling some summer fruits and vegetables.

The handling part had a lot to do with extremely specialized and costly tools available, for your shopping convenience, right there at Williams-Sonoma. Twice they passed out tastes of the demonstrations and at the end all the leftovers were available for finishing. Interesting, Yum, Fun, and Free. What an excellent combination.

Oh goodie, a nice…

July 26

Oh goodie, a nice day with Cynthia! We walked from her house down to this cool cafe for an early lunch and then set out to see what we could see.

…the Sherman Library and…

…the Sherman Library and Garden in Corona del Mar.

It was really lovely and the first thing I thought upon entry – this place is one classic wedding venue. Now I see on their website that weddings are a regular enterprise here which makes me think weekend visits could be risky.

That’s Cynthia taking the next two pictures.

It’s quite gorgeous around…

It’s quite gorgeous around the wedding areas which includes sit-down dining options, dancing, etc.

What they say on their website: “While the botanical garden has its technical importance, colorful annuals are emphasized with the seasonal changing of several large flower beds and containers throughout the Gardens. The mild coastal climate is ideal for maintaining an abundant variety of flowering plants all year long.”

There’s an excellent succulent…

There’s an excellent succulent garden too, and a tropical greenhouse as well as a local research library open during the week and a cafe that offers lunch.

First we went into…

First we went into the large and well appointed meditation building. It was pitch black inside there except for the one light over this picture.

It’s a challange to just sit in silent mostlty-darkness and we decided not to try too hard. We moved on.

There were a couple…

There were a couple of temple dogs who rushed to greet us and then stuck pretty close during our time there.

Lastly, we walked some more this time to a yummy Thai dinner and then I came home. Ahhh. Thank you my sweet. See you again very soon!

Windy is home from…

July 25

Windy is home from visiting Travis and Lainee and Cali and Jack Black. Here’s Jack and Cali May fresh from their trip to The Photographer. I snagged these shots off a professional site (hence the stamp across their faces…) because they are tooo good.

Susie and I had…

July 24

Susie and I had another great Day Out. We appreciate our free time! First we went downtown to see the ikebana exhibit at the Japanese American National Museum.

I think it was even more enjoyable than what I was expecting. There were ikebana exhibits – not so many but the ones they had seemed exceptionally wonderful. Included in the same space were sculptures, photographs, paintings, and ‘found object’ pieces to reflect the aesthetic of ikebana.

It’s on two floors so don’t miss going upstairs where, as well as the ikebana, the permanent exhibit of the WWII internment camps is so worth seeing.

Then we went to…

Then we went to Barnsdale Art Park.

Whoo. Can you believe? I can’t remember being here except maybe more than Fifty Years Ago(?). It’s right off Hollywood Blvd near Vermont. That’s the Hollywood sign and the Griffith Observatory out there!

As well as this lawn and view there are outdoor sculptures, a gallery (the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery), a theater, a large Junior Art Center, facilities for making pottery and jewelry, and…

…The Hollyhock House. …

…The Hollyhock House. Built in the 1920s, it is the first Frank Lloyd Wright commission in Los Angeles.

Those are hollyhocks along that wall. You can’t tell from this picture but you can imagine – it’s a Frank Lloyd Wright house after-all and it is fanTastic inside. There’s an excellent tour. My eyes are still all a-sparkle over the leaded windows and the living-room, wow.

We lucked out in that the skies were so clear. Maybe on a yucky day it wouldn’t be so impressive… but still, if you’re in the area, it’s very much worth a stop. They are open for tours Wednesday through Sunday.

Rome’s (pre-pre-school) Class! …

July 23

Rome’s (pre-pre-school) Class! I’ve got more – Rome and her teachers, Rome at snack time, Rome in circle – but I’m upset with myself for letting this fabulous opportunity go by without getting something reeeally good.

But then I’ve never been really That opposed to good-enough…

Darryl’s moving his office…

July 22

Darryl’s moving his office into new digs and I watched Rome so Angela could help him with some clean-up chores. Who do you think got the better of that deal?

Rome was in a…

Rome was in a particularly chipper mood today with a lot of dancing around and clapping and exclaiming ‘oh Granny, we are having so much Fun!’

You are so right my sweet! Today we added geraniums to Rome’s flower repertoire and I showed her how to make a shadow-animal with her hand. Oh yes we were having so much Fun!

I went to Steve…

July 21

I went to Steve and Celina’s for lunch today and we ate food from their farm out-back. I’m thinking a garden becomes a farm when the whole neighborhood can’t eat it all.

Here are names of this season’s crop (the planting and harvests come in waves) that I can remember. I’m sure I’ve forgotten much. Squash of many varieties; Cucumbers of many varieties; Tomatoes of many varieties; Carrots; Chives; Radishes; Artichokes; Lettuce of many varieties; Peas; Beans both green and yellow; Eggplant; Beets; Peppers; Zucchini; and What all more.

You go Celina!

Sharon’s off tomorrow for…

July 20

Sharon’s off tomorrow for weeks to visit relatives, so Nancy had us over for a nice bon voyage brunch. These butterflies hang happily from a living room lamp.

Then in the afternoon…

Then in the afternoon Terry and Arlene brought their nephew Mike from Pittsburg, PA, out to the beach.

We walked to Venice, stopped off at Casa del Mar, ate dinner at the end of the pier, and generally had a grand ol’ time.

Here is one hot…

July 17

Here is one hot ticket. And it is totally free in that you don’t even have to pay for parking… really totally free.

The rehearsals at the Hollywood Bowl are open for guests 9am-noon Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. They do funnel everyone into this small section of boxes at the very far end of the stage but nevertheless it is a fantastic treat.

Lill, Brigitte, and Sharon – we are enjoying our intermission picnic. Perfect.

It feels like you…

It feels like you are actually hearing the instruments right there playing in your own back yard, the music is so ‘real’ seemingly without amplification.

We heard Lang Lang and the LA Phil working up Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto #1 and it was spectacular. The two insets of Lang Lang are from the internet. ‘They’ are promoting him like a rock star.

We also heard the ‘Selections from Crouching Tiger Concerto’ that we all enjoyed very much, with a fabulous cello lead and great percussion.

Having had such a…

Having had such a lovely morning we decided we might as well buzz up to the Getty for a couple hours because why not.

I’ve been complaining about this guy ever since he first appeared a while back. Now they’ve got the grasses growing around him, and flowers, and I’ve entirely softened. He looks like he’s at home there now and I welcome him to stay. Funny how that is.

I added him to my Getty Center Favorites.

Marsha’s moving and the…

July 14

Marsha’s moving and the gang gathered to say farewell to this house in which we have had many a lively Monday Night Potluck Feast.

Marsha and Tom will be moved by the end of the month and in August we’ll welcome their new house into the fold.

We had our Peace…

July 13

We had our Peace Corp Bon Voyage for Mindy tonight. You go girl!

Mindy’s post will be somewhere in Zambia. That’s the flag of Zambia, the former Northern Rhodesia. Zimbabwe, the former Southern Rhodesia and well known in the news today, borders Zambia to the south.

My entire personal experience of Africa is 1) my travels in Morocco and 2) Courtney’s volunteer time in Zanzibar (scroll down to Feb 5).

Sandy and I went…

July 12

Sandy and I went to Bergamot Station this evening for a 20th Anniversary party at Hiromi Paper.

Surprisingly to me most…

Surprisingly to me most of the galleries were closed, but not all of them.

(I could tell the ugly story of the three separate days I waited for the refrigerrator delivery for the front house but…you know how that can be already.)

Today was the funeral…

July 11

Today was the funeral for Bonnie’s mother. Bonnie and her siblings displayed this great collection of photos for the reception.

Then, since I was…

Then, since I was half-way there already, I went downtown to see the free music show at the California Plaza Watercourt on Grand Avenue.

During summer there are shows here most Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. You can click here for the Grand Performances schedule.

…and this is Nati…

…and this is Nati Cano’s Mariachi Los Camperos, a very tight (in so many ways…) ten man Mariachi band that opened to great cheers from the crowd.

It was a nice…

July 10

It was a nice walking day today, after consultations with the gardener to do a few things for the yard clean-up project.

It was all good.

This place is down around 4th and Wilshire. Notice how they keep the facade and build a big ol’ honkin’ building behind it. Very Santa Monica.

Two things sad-sad about…

July 8

Two things sad-sad about today. 1) the book Blindness by Jose Saramago 2) I missed dinner (my birthday dinner!) with Bill and Ken because I Forgot to change my calendar when we changed the date. I still feel sad-sad about standing up my friends (and missing the dinner!).

I’ve gotten over feeling sad about Blindness but I will say that book is one big fat crushing unrelenting downer. It’s one horrible thing after another, on and on, suffering and misery. Page after page, can it get any worse for the inhabitants of this book? Why, yes it can, and it does.

Also the writing lacks all useful punctuation, doesn’t name the characters, repeats and runs on, making you struggle along, suffering and miserable too because it takes so dang long to get through a page. And do you want to do that to yourself? You can decide.

Hi Liz! Awww,…

July 7

Hi Liz! Awww, big fat Bummer Dude!!

Check out that cast from tippy toe to about as high as a thing like that could get. Awww is right. Liz slipped on a wet floor and smashed up her knee. Simple as a slip, and then eight weeks in a cast.

Rome brought the Dora band-aid to the hospital for her Grammy.

Dan and Shelly are…

July 6

Dan and Shelly are in from Maryland, Ben and Bonnie hosted a festive get-together, Carl and Lynn came too, and I had a great time!

And that’s Louie the dog. (And if your brain didn’t just insist ‘Aye-yi-yi-yi, I said Louie Louie, ohhh baby Me gotta go’, well, you’re probably not listening to your brain…)

Holy Cow what is…

July 4

Holy Cow what is this?! When Brigitte was over yesterday we walked around the yard and she gave exact and excellent advice about what to clean up, what to plant, what to move, so I said ok, I’ll do this little patch this week and then think about the next step next week.

But…having got about 5% into the project I tore up the skin on the palm of my hand…


…and my little sister…

…and my little sister the nurse came over (with her boyfriend the corvette guy) and bandaged me up. Thanks Win! In the photo above, my hand has the amazing high-tech dressings on already. Sorry Brigitte…I might be a little late on that clean-up…

Then Sharon had a…

Then Sharon had a lovely holiday dinner (and gave me a pair of gardening gloves. I was gardening without gloves? Of course I tore up my hand.)

We had a fabulous…

We had a fabulous view of the Pacific Palisades fireworks right from this patio! No schlepping, no parking, no agitato. They fly right up over that garage.

Sharon’s neighbors had done their own recent clean-up of their trees so it was the best view of any year since she has lived here. Hurray!

French Onion Soup, pix…

July 3

French Onion Soup, pix from the internet. Dark and rich and chewy and tangy and sweet.

Today I took Brigitte to a restaurant where we both had French Onion Soup. Sadly, it was nothing At All like this but rather it was pale and thin and watery and worst of all was the cheese – a deli slice of processed swiss.

Maybe I can feel an obsession coming on, to find a place to get actual French Onion Soup. Anybody know a place?

Ackk, no Rome picture…

July 2

Ackk, no Rome picture today, for some reason, but here’s a picture of Lill’s refrigerator. It speaks for itself.

How excellent to kick…

July 1

How excellent to kick off this fine summer month at the beach, down south with Susie. We did a full circuit tour of the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

I’ve never been here…

I’ve never been here before and it is quite fabulous. There’s a walking trail leading along the bluffs and just for this it’s well worth the trip.

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