Good humor makes all things possible.
-Charles Schultz-

With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come.
-Shakespeare-The Merchant of Venice-

Saturday, August 17, 2013

When You're A Jet: the second half

When you're a Jet
you're a Jet all the way
from your first cigarette
to your last dying day.

You didn't think we could still jump this high

No, regrettably, this isn't us, but forty years later, they could be.  There was less dancing and singing this year; we all felt the absence of J and B.   J is in the middle of chemotherapy and can't travel, but he's feeling better so we've no complaints.  We cobbled together a FaceTime visit on the laptop and it was great to be together online, at least, and share in the joy of their beautiful daughter's engagement, but there were definitely two empty chairs all weekend.

Dr L and I have been besties for--unbelievably--half a century.  

J's baby brother and his wife joined us for dinner one night.  
New at the table this year is D, who was the new girl in fifth grade.  Later, she went away to hippie commune boarding school, which was apparently good training for this retreat.

Oh, you kids and your gadgets.
And yes, the refrigerator really was covered with mosaic tile. 

Chai spiced scones--no, I didn't make those, but they were an excellent encore to the previous night's pitcherful of White Linen.  

What, meal time again?  
A heavenly dinner of pork tenderloin began with Caprese salad with nectarines...sublime.

Oh, this house!  A massive log home with every amenity and beautiful views out every window.  
We've already booked it for next year.  I already can't wait!

Some of us are a little better at sitting than leaping.

There are so many days when I don't feel one bit lucky, but I know that I am.
I am lucky to have these priceless friends in my life.

All the really beautiful photos were taken by Dr L.  I took the Samsung phone cam shots.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Make mine a White Linen

Go ahead, guess what this is.   Here's your first clue: it's the first part of August.  Time for the Jenny Creek Cafe annual hog-tie and hopscotch convention!  What you're seeing is me (at home) making a bittersweet chocolate torte, and simultaneously making lemon basil shortbread, because if I'm baking by myself I can do two things at once.  That ratio reduces by the number of people helping me, but nobody was.

Along with talking until our throats are sore, a giant portion (see what I did there?) of what we do on these pilgrimages is eat.  Wonderful food is a big part of the equation.  It might be just as fun with boxed macaroni and cheese or Subway sandwiches, but I sincerely doubt it.  We love to make food for each other, and we relish eating it.

This looks peculiar because it's raw.  I forgot to take a picture after it was baked.  It was beautiful.

This guy is raw too, obviously.  Filleted, marinated and grilled on cedar planks, it was hands down the most delicate and delicious salmon I have ever eaten.

We're halfway through our long weekend retreat, still eating and drinking and talking.  Those with hardier constitutions and better knees have decided to climb this nearby cinder cone, and a slightly less agile contingent has gone to take pictures at nearby Lake Siskiyou.

There's the view from the tippy top of Black Butte cinder cone, which I can see from the window.
 I got up out of my easy chair to wave at them.

I'm here on a peaceful comfy couch in an enormous log home with my first drink of the afternoon (but not likely my last.)

Made with this, the most delightful stuff on earth

Elderberry liqueur is a magical potion that is better than any liquid you have ever tasted.  My new favorite beverage, by a wide margin, is a delight called a White Linen.  It has this St Germain, fresh lemon juice, sugar syrup, sliced cucumbers and good gin.  Last night when I was figuring out the math required to make a pitcher full I completely missed the admonition to top off the glass with club soda so after two or three tumblers full I really needed to pipe down and go to bed.  I didn't, but I should have.  Fortunately tonight I have another opportunity to get things right.

Since all I have is my little Samsung camera phone, decent pictures of this fiesta are a bit farther down the pipeline, but I will come up with Part Two, I promise.  Tonight's dinner is grilled pork tenderloin, caprese salad, grilled vegetables, and the second half of that chocolate jewel I was making at the top of this post.

Having a wonderful time; wish you were here.  Bring club soda.