The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. ~ Psalm 16:6 nasb

Friday, March 31, 2017


March, in pictures and a few brief words...

March 1.

I had to take the opportunity to take a few pictures of Thomas working on Arabelle (my 2000 BMW 528i).  Since he was laid off, we've "hired" him to do work that would otherwise cost us an arm and a leg.

March 5.

Fernando put some time in at home working on a circuit board for his employer.  Meanwhile, I decided I wanted chocolate cake--hence the Skillet Cake you see in the foreground.

March 7.

A random photo of what happens many nights at our house.  We have to figure out who needs to park where in the driveway so that everyone can get out at the appropriate time in the morning.  With five vehicles crowding the space, it gets a little crazy!!

March 8.

One of the guys took this photo of me, on this day that was supposedly called Day Without a Woman.  I had the privilege of working, so I guess the only thing without this particular woman was my home.  In order to support the radical agenda of the liberal women's group that sponsored the day, women were supposed to wear red to show their solidarity.  True to my independent self, I proudly wore all blue.

March 9.

Thomas had an interview, and volunteered for me to take his picture.  Go figure.  I definitely took advantage of this rare opportunity!

That evening, our family attended a rally to re-elect our town's mayor.  Mayor Claar was happy to pose with us when we greeted him!  He is very involved with this community, and very accessible to its residents.

March 12.

I had to pick up Fernando from O'Hare, and I grabbed the first pair of shoes I could find--my leopard print moccasin slippers!

We also went out to eat (not sure this was the same date, though, so I stuck these two pics in here...) at Ted's Montana Grill, and of course we devoured the apple crisp for dessert.  Yum!

March 14.

March 14 is Pi Day, where geeks around the world celebrate by talking about math and baking pie.  It's also my half birthday, so it has always been a good excuse for baking.  I have only three pie plates, so I used a square dish for the lemon buttermilk pie, which tastes fabulous no matter its shape!

It also snowed, so I ran out to my back yard garden to take some pictures of this rare event--practically no snow at all this entire winter!

The rest of March.

I took random food photos the rest of this month, and here they are!

Hawaiian Haystacks.

Stir Fry Veggies and Black Beans.

Apple Crisp.

The promise of spring.

Spring is coming, never fear.  I was able to fit in a quick trip to the Morton Arboretum to see what I could find pushing its way up through the winter ground.  I was not disappointed!

Back to life,

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Friday, March 24, 2017

Signs of Spring

On a beautifully warm late morning, just before I went in to work today, I had the chance to drive up to The Morton Arboretum with my camera and macro lens to find some signs of spring.  I was hoping for some color, and I was not dissapointed.

Blue catmint.

Various trees were budding and almost ready to blossom, and even though I had only a short amount of time, I was able to spot the buds.

It was almost high noon, with bright sun, so it wasn't the best time to take pictures.  However, I did find some good angles, and of course, when I spotted things pushing up through the winter ground, I just had to capture them!!

I love the fuzzy buds on the trees--I think they're magnolias.

This photo of a leaf is one of my favorites, even without any color.  I love how the sun is illuminating the edges and causing the shadows on the inside of the cur.  I love the waves along the edge, too.

Yellow!  It almost hurt the eyes, it was so bright.

The Lenten roses were blooming, too, just in time for Easter in a few weeks' time.  I had to lie down on the ground to capture the little flowers, but it was worth it.

And, finally, daffodils, one of the most iconic signs of spring, just blooming alongside the road, just a small clump, but enough to let us all know that spring is almost here.

Back to life,

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

It Actually Snowed This Year!

March 14.

So, it snowed!  One of the few times this winter, we actually had snow on the ground.  I threw on a coat and headed out to the garden to see what was hiding under the white blanket.  Here's what I found...

I'm so glad spring is coming!

Back to life,

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Wednesday, March 1, 2017


My February, in mobile phone pictures...

February 2.  Dad and Mom took me to Panera for lunch.  I have the best parents, not because they take me to lunch, but because they raised me well, and they call, and talk, and have fun with me.  I treasure our relationship!!

Then, a somewhat goofy selfie to text to Fernando, who was in some airport somewhere on a layover, waiting for his connecting flight to fly home to his sweetheart.

And then he came home!

February 4.  His-and-hers Andy's frozen custard.  Because it's amazing, and it was free, and Fernando was home.  Who cares how cold it is outside?  Not me.

February 5, Superbowl Sunday.  The only photo I took was of this maple-bacon brie, in puff pastry.  It was amazing.  I'll have to post a recipe soon, of course...

Oh, I also took this photo during the football game, of Danny with a huge blanket wrapped up on top of his head.  Goofy kid.

February 8.  Thomas spent three entire weekends repairing my Arabelle (BMW), and I felt like taking a picture once I arrived at work today.

February 11.  Free tickets to the Chicago Auto Show!!  Again, I left my big-girl camera at home, determined to simply enjoy the day.  I got to sit in cars I'll never own, and discuss with Fernando the pros and cons of other cars I'll also never own.

The Lego Batmobile!  We probably own enough Legos to recreate this at home...

We entered the drawing to win this Slingshot.  (We didn't win it.)

Our Saturday at the Auto Show ended with a drive to Navy Pier and a meal at Bubba Gump's Shrimp Company.  Fernando and I, and Jake, Thomas, and Bryan (friend of the guys) all had a super fun day together.

February 12.  So, something else broke--our washing machine.  But, Fernando is amazing, figured out what was wrong, and provided a fix.  The washer won't shut off now if we open the lid--lost that safety feature--but it works, so no major expense there.

February 14.  Fernando was out of town for Valentine's Day, so my sister Lori and I spent the afternoon together, culminating in dessert at Le Chocolate in downtown Naperville.  Oh, my goodness!

February 16.  Thomas did some tweaking under the hood of my car.

February 17.  Another tea time with sweet Sarah, at my home this time.  I had Thomas run out to Cali Girl Cakes for some cupcakes and cookies, and Sarah showed up with sweets of her own!  Needless to say, we were stuffed, eating all afternoon, sharing tea, and talking and laughing our heads off!

February 23.  I tend to use my mobile for food pictures--and then I post them on Instagram or Facebook.  I finally made salsa verde (salsa de tomatillo) for Taco Night.  I need to make it more often; it's that awesome.

February 25.  After an incredibly warm week--of which I worked every day, of course--the weather turned c-c-cold, so here's me bundled up for a date with my hubby, home from Korea!  I ended up getting a tummy ache while we were out, so we just came home and lounged around.  So much for a special day together...

February 26.  The second Trader Joe's Dark Chocolate Commendation Bar, a two-kilo chocolate bar.  I don't know what the commendation is for, but the dark Belgian chocolate is amazing so we broke open this beauty and started enjoying it.

February 27.  On the way home from work, it happened again.  I was driving along Lake Tampier, enjoying the sunset and thinking had I had my camera with me I would've stopped and taken a few photos, when I glanced down at the dashboard and saw my temperature gauge pegged out in the red zone.  I pulled over to the only place there is to pull over in any direction--a little parking lot across from the main lake.  I popped open the hood, gave Fernando a call, called Charlie the Streaker (our towing guy, we love him!), watched three guys get in their cars/trucks and drive off without even checking on my well-being, and sat in the car and waited.

Charlie found us, even though this little parking lot isn't on the Garmin/TomTom map, and got us towed.  Fernando and I drove back to my work in the Suburban, since I forgot a package I had there, and then we drove home.

Arabelle sits in my driveway today, under Thomas' care.  Since he was laid off a while ago, he has been so helpful with my car.  I'm glad he's working on it.  The expansion tank for the radiator will be a simple fix, according to Thomas, so I'll be able to drive the car this week.

The other damage--brake issues, which we think was caused the first time the car was towed--was too expensive to get done via the dealership.  So, Thomas will work on that and hopefully he'll get things figured out and fixed.  But that's a post for March.

Back to life,

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