Used to be a ‘new’ Jersey Girl   : now A Colorado Girl

Monday, April 01, 2013

The Weekend that Was

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I think Spring is finally on the way. As I type the little Carolina wren is singing away outside my window. I just adore those little birds and their sweet varied songs. I can see buds about to pop on the maple trees and the day lilies have broken ground. The daffodils have lots of flower buds coming. Soon it will all burst wide open and I'll be glad for that.

Our three-day weekend went pretty well. On Friday we did some errand running around. Some errands were successful (like our trip to DSW for new shoes) and others weren't as successful as I had hoped (Unique Photo for this new lens which was out of stock). As soon as I made the final decision to actually buy it and spend my reserved "Mom" money they run out due to a super new sale price. Next week!

We took the dogs for a walk, Rick took down the old cabana canopy frame in preparation for the new one and gave Mia a much needed bath.

We branched out for dinner and tried cooking skate for the first time and it was amazingly good. 

On Saturday we took Mia out for a spin. It was nice enough to have the top down once the day warmed up. We drove down to Branch Book Park in Bloomfield (a suburb of Newark) to check on the progress of the cherry trees, and also because I wanted to know the route so I could drive myself when the time comes. Last year this time the cherries were just about done, but this year they haven't even started yet. We saw a couple of trees that had popped, but most had not. I plan to spend a lot of time wandering around the park with my camera (and my new lens!) just taking in all the blossoms and getting some much needed cherry therapy or "cherrapy". Here's what they looked like last year.

When we got home Rick experimented with the new cook book I got him the other day. America's Test Kitchen's D.I.Y. cookbook: Can It, Cure It, Churn It, Brew It: 100+ Foolproof kitchen projects for the adventurous home cook. He made ketchup! It was very tasty and much better than the prepared stuff. Healthier too! It made the house smell so good.


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We used it on our homemade onion rings that accompanied our grilled steaks. Here are the rings before frying. Yum!

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Easter was spent doing much not of anything. The weather was cloudy and windy and by afternoon the rain had started in. We bathed Alex, who was sorely in need of a bath, and blew him dry dog-show style in the morning. We just stayed around the house and watched TV, read and I knit some (still working on Rick's slippers, almost done) and cooked our free Easter ham. We also had gratin dauphinois and roasted carrots, parsnips and onions as sides. Delicious! Now we'll be eating on ham for the rest of the week: in quiche, split pea soup and so on. We'll also be having Sloppy Joes this week and using Rick's ketchup in them to see how it works when used in a recipe. 

So that's it folks, the weekend that was. I think I covered most of the highlights. I hope however you spent your holiday weekend was equally as enjoyable as ours.

(Top Photo explanation: I was intrigued by capturing the play of light on the fencing around the pool late in the afternoon as we grilled our steaks. The wrought iron chair on the opposite side of the fence was casting a shadow.)



Saturday, March 30, 2013

Happy Easter Weekend!

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I hope everyone has a great Easter holiday weekend! Our weather here in New Jersey is finally being kind to us and today we can look forward to a spring-like day before another cold front defends on us at the beginning of the week.

Today we plan to finally take down the Christmas lights from our little Alberta spruce trees out in front of  the house. The bottoms of the trees with the power cords for the lights have been under some kind of snow since they were put up. It's time!

We'll also jump in the convertible and go for a ride, hopefully with the top down!

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Happy Easter!


Linked in to Weekly Top Shot

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Amaryllis 3: The Opening

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Friday, March 22, 2013

So Much for Spring

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The first day of spring has come and gone with nothing to show for it. Our ground is still covered in white from our 4-5 inch snowfall on Monday. It's melting, but slower than you would expect it to at this time of year. The thermometer is stuck in the 30's. When I look back on the blog entries from years past at this time it's almost surreal. Last year the forsythia was blooming! This year its buds are closed tight with not even a glimmer of yellow showing. I know, I checked it yesterday. I also know I promised no more white photos, but I couldn't help myself the other day with the late afternoon sun on the melting snow.

It's hard to motivate myself to go out with the camera to find anything of interest so I headed to the local garden shop yesterday since I had noticed that they were flying a big OPEN sign the other day. No flowers yet except for a few potted bulbs inside. And these colorful hummingbird feeders.

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And this cheeky little guy who is much cuter than the pesky squirrels in my yard that have now chewed an even bigger hole in my best bird feeder. Other than that there was nothing to see or buy at the shop.

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The weekend is supposed to be a bit warmer with temperatures in the 40's, but they are saying the wind chills are going to make it feel much colder. And, a little  more snow is expected on Monday. Alex keeps pulling out his snowman toy that was a Christmas present to play with and I think he might be jinxing us. I'm seriously thinking of putting it away until next year.

In other news, the last amaryllis is just about ready to bloom and it looks like it's going to burst forth with three flowers at the same time.

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And on closer inspection, the huge amaryllis that still has one last flower blooming has another flower stalk poking out of the base of the bulb. Wow, I'm thrilled it has the oomph to send up yet another bud stalk!

So how's that for a mish-mash of stuff in one blog post!

Friday, March 15, 2013

The Merry Month of March

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Ah, March. If there ever was a month that couldn't make up its mind, March is it. So far it's given us a few glorious spring-like days, but yesterday it gave us snow flurries and brutally cold cold wind. Downright nasty. Looking back on my blog in past years, entries show up with maple tree buds bursting and neighborly crocus blooming. I think I saw the neighbors' crocus up the other day as I drove past but they were closed up tight due to gray skies. My maple trees show no signs of wanting to bust out all over but I did see about ten robins the other day in my yard. One day they weren't there; the next they were!

March is capricious, that's for sure.

I was surprised and quite pleased by all the visitors brought to my blog by joining in the Rurality Blog Hop this week. My poor little blog hasn't seen that many comments in years. Maybe never! So if you are stopping by again on a return visit, thank you for your kind words the other day.

We are hosting a dinner party tomorrow night for six people plus us. We used to entertain quite a bit but don't so much anymore. Mostly because of the rowdy dogs but quite possibly they were just an excuse. We've done this particular dinner once before and it was a great hit with our guests. We are having cassoulet that we ordered in a "kit" from D'Artagnan in the Hudson Valley who are known for their French goods, most particularly duck products.

Our kit arrived on Wednesday with all the main ingredients that we need: haricot tarbais (large white beans), ventreche (a kind of pancetta), duck leg confit, duck and armagnac sausage, french garlic sausage, duck and veal demi-glace, and of course, duck fat.

Let's just hope that we don't have to change out dining tables like we did the last time. (Last time I was putting the extra leaf in our antique table when the table leg broke. We had to call on our neighbor, who was also coming to our dinner, to help us get our other table up from the basement. What a ta-do!)

Today will be spent grocery shopping and cleaning the house in preparation, so I best get on with it and stop blabbing!


(photo: Shadows at Long Pond when the sky was a strange color: blue!)


Welcome, I'm Lynne. You know me better as a 'new' Jersey Girl. But now I've moved back to my 'home' state and I am living in NoCo (Northern Colorado).This blog will be about my thoughts, good food, and of course, dogs.

© 2006-2018 Lynne Robinson All photography and text on this blog is copyright. For use or reproduction please ask me first.

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