“It’s not that we spend five days looking forward to just two. It’s that most people do what they enjoy most on those two days. Imagine living a life where everyday are your Saturdays and Sundays. Make everyday your weekend. Make everyday a play-day…”⠀James A. Murphy
Saturday I was able to sleep in. By sleep in I mean I woke up at 8 a.m. It is one of my favourite things to be the first one up on the weekend especially when the sun is out. I started my morning with freshly made coffee and two episodes of the Starz original series The Spanish Princess. It is third in a series based on books by Philipa Gregory. Once everyone slowing followed we made our way out the door for some thrift shopping and car show. Our first stop is usually Value Village. At first glance through those magical doors I found a framed poster of the Café DuMonde in New Orleans. It was a must buy for the kitchen. I was excited to find sterling silver flatware. I have been over the years starting to collect silver flatware finding similar pieces to what my great-grandmother had.
At the car show if felt so much like a neighborhood block party. Old school music played, families out enjoying the sun stopping for flavored shaved ice and the many classic car owners taking the time to talk to the many admirers. There were a few that of course caught our eye. One being this 1964 Chevy Impala with etchings on the mirror to the door handles to around the lights. It was jewelry for the car. There were quite a few Impalas, one that still in its pristine original paint. You can tell the amount of care that goes into everyone. The car show sparked enthusiasm in my not so little I fear we may be in trouble. This may have lead to a new hobby for mi Viejo and our daughter.
We are now into our new week with the last few days of school coming up this weekend was I hope a glimpse to what the summer weather will be. Sunday was perfect bar-b-que weather, Father’s Day where the dads (father and son) showed one another how they grill. My not so little and I took a walk around the neighborhood stumbling on an open house that we brought my mother-in-law and grandmother back to. It was a nice five bedroom home with a pretty decent sized yard. Making our way back to the in-law’s to feast everything was grilled to perfection. Shrimp wrapped in maple brown sugar bacon, honey bbq chicken, corn, potatoes and steak. Lastly, copper river salmon that melted in your mouth. I think we’re going to put this feast on repeat. Looking forward to the summer days ahead for they’re anything like this past weekend.
“When I got to New Mexico that was mine. As soon as I saw it that was my country. I’d never seen anything like it before, but it fitted to me exactly. It’s something that’s in the air–it’s different. The sky is different, the wind is different. I shouldn’t say too much about it because other people may be interested and I don’t want them interested.” ~ Georgia O’Keefe
Wide open spaces capture your attention sinking you into its vastness. One can feel so small but yet so large with life soaking in the fresh air. Not a soul for miles. Just you, the wind whispering the richness of this soil, the fresh hint of rain, gentle kisses from the sun. And in the evening the closeness of stars. I can only agree with her sentiment, New Mexico is different and not like anywhere you’ve seen before and it’s mine.
I fell in love with New Mexico nine years ago when I came with my husband and our daughter to his family’s ranch. Forty miles outside of Taos and a few miles before entering one of the oldest cities in Colorado, a recently paved road leads up toward the mountains to a humbling place called Amalia. His grandparents 14 1/2 acres leading up to a river and expanding toward the mountains is part of a land grant. There is not much to do here as you are forty miles from the nearest stop light and the “corner” store is at least 15 minutes down road. Family and friends stop by on their way to wherever they are going, a short visit turning into lunch then dinner. It is the perfect place to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life. A place to recharge. Not a street lamp in sight, only the stars.
Although with time comes changes this little area remains slightly untouched. There are still viejitas who live down dirt roads with minimal modern “luxuries” and/ or electricity cooking to perfection empanadas and tortillas on wood burning stoves that melt in your mouth you can’t wait to dip them in red or green chili. If you are looking for the best place to hunt antiques ask no one else. My favorite viejita is one of my husband’s cousin. She is a feisty hip-hop loving viejita in her mid 70s never leaving home without her hita (her 38 special) and she’s never to shy to share her opinion. Each visit we are to never leave empty handed.
Our first stop in Taos was Michael’s Kitchen for their red chili. My breakfast of choice was a Christmas style Martin’s Breakfast Burrito made with scrambled eggs, bacon, cheese, diced green chile and hash browns wrapped in a flour tortilla. The Christmas style comes into play in the way of the burrito being covered (or smothered) in both red and green chili sauce. Let me tell you 1. I had to split the burrito and 2. I made sure to get extra red chili. As a Seattlite we are big on our Starbucks coffee but Michael’s had excellent coffee. You can buy it here at their online shop.
There is something about bargain hunting that brings out joy amongst complete strangers. Frequenting my favorite hunting ground Value Village (where I have indeed been mistaken for an employee on numerous occasions by current employees) I almost always walk out with something that I’ve been thinking about. I guess it’s the saying when you put the thought into the universe you will be rewarded. Although they seem to come in small doses I am very thankful for these amazing ‘happenings.’
Back to what I was saying. The bargain “hunter gatherer” in us finds other bargain “hunter gatherers” and with a rush of excitement cheering them on their find. That very thing happened to me. I went to my favorite Value Village revisiting the same shelves for a new surprise. I was so thrilled to find the rattan serving tray I had been eyeing for a week was still there. Not only that a few day prior I had passed on a set of wicker charges to then be surprised with a few that I liked much more.
At the check out I shared my excitement about the serving tray to which the cashier shared in my joy. Exiting with my arms full a gentleman stopped to ask “did you find any bargains?” To which I replied’ “well I actually grabbed this tray I’d been eyeing for a week!” He in astonishment walked closer to say “you mean to tell me you’d been here for a week and it’s still been here?” “Yes!” I replied, “can you believe it?” He shared in my joy, gave me a side hug with praise at my finds and told me he was happy for my find.
So yes, I indeed walked out with my arms full but my heart was as well. This was not the first time I was met with that bargain enthusiasm and I am sure it will not be my last.
Nestled among homes in South Seattle there is a hidden gem. It is a welcomed surprise, a beautiful 20 acre Japanese Garden known to locals as Kubota Garden.
In 1927 Fujitaro Kubota, a self taught gardener, purchased five acres with a mission to show the beauty of the Northwest in the art of the Japanese garden.
In the garden you can find streams leading to waterfalls, rock formations, beautiful trees and many beautiful spots to have a romantic picnic.
The garden has been a favorite of photographers, weddings, picnic goers, and sunrise chasers. On a visit with my family we got glimpses of young lady getting her Quinceanera photos taken. I wish I’d taken photos of her beautiful white dress that was sparingly covered in pink flowers. But I didn’t want to disturb them. We also stumbled upon a first date among trees near this pond sitting on a green plaid blanket sharing hard cider.
My husband and I have visited a few times and for the first time we discovered the waterfall. Neither of us new it was here and was such a pleasant surprise to discover with our daughter leading the trail of followers we collected on our stroll. It is the perfect escape amongst the urban surroundings. I highly recommend a visit.
We’re in the last few days of vacation slowly preparing to get back into the busy days of school and work. It has been nice to wake up to the sun peaking through the blinds. No alarms, no rush to get ready just easing into the day. Some days grey and rainy but wonderful just the same. It has been nice binge watching new and old television shows, movie and game nights galore. Few early evenings were spent in the kitchen making sweet potato pies and chocolate cookies that rarely made it to the next day. Ending 2018 was spent with ones I love hanging on with heaving eyes trying to make it to midnight. If you’re wondering I did in-fact make it. I could not have asked for better people to spend that time with.
In this morning of 2019 I am excited about the things to come. The positive changes of life as if I am seeing the new year with the optimism of youth. In looking forward to the new and exciting magic of life sometimes we must look backward taking inventory of things that helped shape our present and exhale in serenity that we’ve made it through. I will spare you the exhausting details as there are so much I am still going through and learning to process. I will tell you there has been loss, near loss, injuries, weddings, and births. Life has its way of serving curve balls nearly knocking you off its axis testing your balance. May be that is what I am still needing to find. That “perfect” balance. To help keep me focused I decided this year I would share my 2019 Resolutions to not only put my intentions into the universe as they say (speaking them into existence) but to find them and hold myself to it. I am typically a quiet goal setter, a shy goal setter. As one of my resolutions states it is time to do more of the things I dreamed of, to step out of my comfort zone.
Here are my resolutions in no particular order:
Read more (never stop learning)
Watch less television
Help my daughter navigate the trials of youth
Take weekend trips – explore more of the Pacific Northwest