Eating

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It is said that if you want wildlife to visit a garden, just add water, as it attracts more critters than food. I’m not sure about our numbers, but I will say that we get a lot of activity, with this adorable female Lesser Goldfinch enjoying our hospitality on the regular. We are happy to oblige.

Early last Saturday morning, driving for a waterside hike.

I cannot be certain, but I do believe this butterfly flitted in our wake for the whole of the hike.

Mr. Silly helps me find just the right angle. This cast too much shade on his handsome face.

Happiness!

white evening primrose

These currants were beautiful and delicious!

Post hike cinnamon roll at The Pantry. It did not disappoint!

What a treat to rise early, hike for a couple hours, eat a hearty breakfast AND a cinnamon roll, and be home by NOON. The height, peeps, the height!

porch life…

mountain shadows

Saving the best for last. Do you like shrimp and grits but despair at having an even distribution of flavor? I am known to cut shrimp into itty bits so every bite is just so. A hassle, to be sure, but, like most things, worth it in the end. That is until I encountered Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock’s Shrimp Grits. The shrimp is cooked in heaps of butter then whirled into oblivion in a food processor before being mixed into already cooked grits. They “get to know each other” for five minutes or so before everyone at the table does their best to contain ecstatic outbursts at each and every bite. Yes ma’am, exactly. Just try it!

Mt. Maestas

Blanca Peak & Mt. Lindsey

When Greg and I were first together, a woman we knew had a rather curious comic taped on her refrigerator, front and center. It read: “It’s not a vacation if your husband goes with you.” I imagine her snickering while carefully clipping it from the paper. Then, with precision, taping around its border, ensuring it would rest for ages and ages on the freezer door, in the direct gaze of her husband of more than twenty years. How funny it must have been to her. How cruel it always seemed to me.

Our trip to Taos was initially one Juniper and I would take without Greg. His schedule at the time of planning was fluid, unknown. It would be fine, of course. I am an excellent traveler, with or without him, and Juniper is so easy going. But I didn’t really like it. Not because I feel completed by him or “need” him. No, I am my own person, solidly so. Perfectly complemented by him, yes. Two synergistic beings in rotation round the sun. I didn’t like it because I love his company. His wit and wisdom. His kindness. His gentleness and strength. His ability to make me laugh and feel comforted. And, boy howdy, that handsome face. So easy on the eyes.

So when his schedule definitively opened, we jumped on the chance to travel together. And what a marvelous time we had!

The Plaza at Costilla, New Mexico, which lies just over the border from Colorado. My Great-Grandparents (times three), Maria de Jesus (a partial source of my Native ancestry) and Aaron Williams, lived here at the time of the 1860 Census. She kept house, and he was a Wagon Driver (note his horse shoe tie pin!). The Plaza is much as it looked when they lived there, the building dating to the 1850s. I continue to feel awed at each layer of history as revealed to me, that they lived and died more than a century ago, yet I feel incredibly close to them. They are in my dreams and on the air, a pulse in my very veins. A marvel, truly.

Oh gosh, how I wish you could see the vivid emerald flush as it appeared to our eyes. We were treated like never before to green on this trip!

This little guy or gal, a cicada, I think? Long since dead, but still clinging to it’s final resting place. Nature really is a wonder.

The Claret Cup Cactus and Opuntias put on quite a show for us.

ponderosa

We hiked to the bottom of the Rio Grande Gorge (a rift zone, actually), 680 feet, and thankfully not straight down!

Good Juniper. Not so great Colleen.

Not so great Juniper. Good Colleen.

We are none of us models!

Greg hides behind a most delicious post-hike burger at Taos Diner. It was well earned!

Manzanita Market – where I, of course, bought another wonderful selection of Dryland Wilds products. The cottonwood bud hand balm is the scent of my childhood springs (!) and super moisturizing.

Chokola never fails.

My people!

Back with more tomorrow…

 

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Griddle cakes, pancakes, hot cakes, flapjacks: why are there four names for grilled batter and only one word for love?

George Carlin

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My recipe for pancakes (a form of L O V E ) here….

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Welcome to Raleigh part deux one day late! It’s been a busy week. Anyhoo, we spied many a cool mural during our stay, and the BRIGGS is a loving nod to Great Grandpa Howard’s namesake. Sweet!

all broken up

Deco delight located near a fab store of the same name. They got A LOT of my money. I got A LOT of good stuff.

Transfer Co. – another cool food hall!

also my fave Beastie Boys album…

The Station had the best pork belly banh-mi EVER and a the cutest beer (tasty, too!) that reminded us of our sweet Juniper. Just in case you were wondering, she stayed home for our travels, which was a little scary for her, despite being safe at our house in the great care of our friend Bebe. I have never had such a welcome home! She barked and jumped and spun in delight (and relief, prolly) upon my arrival.

Two Roosters – roasted strawberry and honey was my flavor choice – YOWZA!

William Peace University – originally a Women’s College

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper (possibly distantly related to the hubster!) lives here. That roof!

We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie.

David Mamet

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Delicious recipe here

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