Thursday, December 22, 2011


I can blame it on making eating too many of these..................

I made several batches of my favorite candy to give away for Christmas. These are addictive and dangerous, but hey, once a year, how bad can they be? 


1 can sweetened condensed milk, 2 cups sugar, 1 cup butter, 1/4 tsp. salt and 1 1/2 cups white corn syrup. Combine in heavy pan. Stir constantly over medium heat until it reaches 244 degrees. Remove from heat and add 1 tsp anise flavoring and 1 tsp. black paste food color. Pour into 9 X 13 pan covered in buttered parchment paper. Let cool to set. Cut and wrap. DELICIOUS!
If you don't want a seat belt extender, do more wrapping than eating of caramels! ENJOY!

Sunday, December 11, 2011


I escaped to The fabulous City of San Fran after work on Friday.  Everywhere I went this song was playing. It is now in my head and won't go away (not a bad thing). 

Thursday, December 8, 2011


Seriously, If these pictures don't put a tiny smile on your face there is something wrong!

In the heart of Chinatown, we found a gum machine with "mustaches" and for the bargain price of 25 cents each, they brought temporary but pure happiness!
  • People in the city were stopping to laugh and smile 
  • Street performers paused to congratulate me on the lovely mustaches on the faces of my offspring
  • And proof positive... stone faced TSA agents in SFO and LAS were totally cracking up over the lovely fuzz on the faces of Parker and Chandler, who wore their distinguished look all day long (they didn't even get searched for being suspiscious looking terrorists ) 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


I would venture to guess that I am not the only one that thinks the world has gone crazy. As I watch the news or read the headlines (which I usually feel better when  avoided, but it is in my genes to keep up on the news, thanks dad!) I find it hard to have much hope in the human race. People are unkind, crazy or just plain dumb!  However, after a fun weekend I had some renewed hope in kindness!

For my birthday, Shawn and the kids met me in San Francisco. As you know, I am a breakfast fiend! My favorite meal, anytime. So I had wanted to go to "Dottie's True Blue Cafe", a  famous hole in the wall diner in the tenderloin (a very sketchy, poor and homeless infused neighborhood) We stood in line for an hour, chatting and laughing with others waiting. We were very entertained by a big fat crow that kept throwing garbage down from a fire escape above us. That same crow decided to poo on my sassy Parker. I swear I believe in Karma! It was hilarious! Breakfast was awesome and totally worth the wait!! As we went to pay the bill, the waitress said, "Oh, someone already paid for you" We were shocked! We were excited and I had my hope  in human kindness restored slightly. We thought about this kind gesture all day! It meant so much to us. We felt warm and happy by this simple gesture from strangers. We have done this for others, but had never been on the receiving end. It was a great feeling! 

After breakfast the boys went to catch a trolley and the operator told them not to worry about paying the fare! In San Francisco, 2 random acts of kindness within  the hour? Unreal! So Sweet! Very Refreshing and unexpected. Ahhhh, renewed hope in mankind! It was a good reminder for me to do more random acts of kindness, because life is meant to be enjoyed! What a good kickoff for the Holiday Season!

Monday, November 7, 2011


That is what they called "Growing up Skipper" the "unintentionally perverted doll".  Even now it provides my sister's and I a great laugh! I can't remember who gave  my sister JoLin and I these dolls for Christmas, it was either my Grandma Leona or my mom. Regardless, it was good for hours of entertainment!  And how wise that we each got our own to avoid any fighting over her!
Growing up Skipper was not like any other Barbie or her friends. Skipper was "pre-teen" and with a quick twist of her arm, she would grown taller, get a shapely waist and grow... taaa daaa... BOOBS! Yep, all of that in one rotation of her arm. AMAZING! Of course she was the coveted doll among our Barbie playing friends. She was practically miraculous! If you don't believe that they really made Skipper like this, check her out in action on You Tube. She also sells on ebay for $65 and up.
Dana,  my youngest sister did not get one of these great dolls because she was well known for chewing off Barbies feet and sitting on my "Barbie Dreamhouse" balcony on Christmas morning and crushing it. Believe me, I still remember how devastated I was when she sat her butt on Barbie's balcony. I am surprised I didn't require therapy for that little incident. 

We often remind Dana that the reason she never really got more than a size AA on her chest is because she could never rotate her arm enough to grow them.  Perhaps it was some curse that Skipper put on Dana for chewing off Barbie feet or destroying our "Barbie stuff"

This reminded me of another favorite doll that I had "Flatsy" and you can imagine  how excited I was when I found a "Flatsy" in Chinatown recently. I think I am going to give her to Dana for Christmas!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


It seems everywhere you look this month it is all about the "Pink" you know, "Breast Cancer Awareness Month".  As a mammographer, I just thought I would share a few things that go through my head as I am doing mammograms:

  1. WOW! I have never seen so much hair on a nipple. Next year please wax, pluck or shave because you are freaking me out!
  2. That is a VERY intesting tattoo but no I DO NOT want to know the story behind it, spare me please!
  3. You are killing me! You pierced your nipples but you are whining about a bit of compression that lasts less than 10 minutes for the entire exam? REALLY?
  4. Just because we said no deodorant does NOT mean you couldn't shower...for 4 days!
  5. No, this is not what I have wanted to do ever since I was a little girl (for my Friend Jill who asks her mammographer this question).
  6. Those puppies are waaaaayy to big to be word, REDUCTION!

Sunday, September 18, 2011


Hello! This is me, loving my new specs. But the really great news is that they were  acquired for very little $!

I found an amazing online "sight" for glasses. This place has 1000's of frames for all shapes and sizes, from practical to whimsical. It is Zenni optical click here for the link to amazement!
Much to my delight I found these lovely specs that I am wearing for under $80.00, yes hard to believe but totally true. As you might know I happened to require "progressive lenses" (hear me shudder) I am also blind as a bat and need high index lenses so they aren't as thick as Coke bottles. I also like anti glare and scratch resistant coating. All of these options with shipping still came to under EIGHTY BUCKS!! So check out their store, they have a spot you can virtually try on the specs. Here is a sampling of some of their fun ones on my wish list:

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


I kid you not, this stuff is good and good for you! My new breakfast,  bedtime  or any time snack! High protein, low calorie and delicious! 
Someone pinch me! Thank you "Gracious Pantry"!!
(I must confess I am not a huge fan of maple, so I put brown sugar instead, but just a tiny bit!)

Clean Eating Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal
(Makes 4 servings)
(Note: the egg whites were my addition in order to get more protein. They are optional.)
1 cup dry oats, cooked
1/2 cup pumpkin purée
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice (no sugar added)
4 egg whites (optional)
1/4 cup pecans per serving
Maple syrup to taste
Step 1 – Cook the oats according to package directions.
Step 2 – In the last 5 minutes of cooking (just take a guess, the oats should basically be pretty much done cooking), quickly stir in the eggs, being sure to stir vigorously so they get well-distributed. Then, stir in the pumpkin purée and pumpkin spice.
Step 3 – Put some oats in a bowl and top with pecans and maple syrup.
Eat and Enjoy!
Nutritional Content
1 serving = 1/4 of the recipe
(Figured with 1 tbsp. maple syrup per serving and 5 pecan halves per serving. Also includes the egg whites.)
Calories: 204
Total Fat: 7 gm
Saturated Fats: 1 gm
Trans Fats: 0 gm
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Sodium: 59 mg
Carbohydrates: 31 gm
Dietary fiber: 4 gm
Sugars: 14 gm
Protein: 7 gm
Estimated Glycemic Load: 17

Friday, August 26, 2011


At least on the "stuck here in Davis " part.  Just in case you are wondering, I have not been dancing @ Ket Mo Ree. 

Saturday, August 20, 2011


Need I say more? Trader Joe's knows how to make amazingly good things! These are a new favorite thing, pretzels drenched in dark chocolate...HEAVEN!!
On this, I am not sure which I like best, ,the ipad 2 or the fabulous case that I got for it

Just discovered this and I am in L-O-V-E! Mac pro lipgloss. This stuff is THE BEST, it seriously stays on ALL DAY LONG! Just re-apply this clear gloss a few times throughout the day. Try it, you will be impressed!

I use this application on my phone more than anything,  very useful on so many levels!

Give me a break,  yes more chocolate. This from World Market is so good, my favorite  is the dark chocolate with mango bits.
Dang almost forgot this favorite! This babies are worth their weight in gold.....seriously! I have bought several pair because I have a spouse and even a few children who can't leave mine alone. The ultimate plucking tool, for about $20 they come with free lifetime sharpening. Consistently winning awards, get yourself a pair of these!

Friday, August 12, 2011

This turns me into a big puddle every time I watch it.....

(not the commercial FYI) I think the news should do happy stories like this as part of the news everyday instead of so much doom and gloom! The look on this wife's face just makes me so happy, you can feel the joy!

Sunday, July 31, 2011


And this is basically how it all went down:  I can NEVER surprise him (he is very snoopy and can't stand not being in the know about anything) but for his birthday, I gave him a card with a luggage tag that said something like "put this on your suitcase and get ready for an adventure. You will need to take time off of work and you need to be in Las Vegas at 3:00 pm Friday, you will return Sunday night @ 9:00 pm. More clues to follow closer to your get away" A few days before he was to depart, I sent him a package containing several small gift cards, each with instructions of when to open them.  For example, one said open this as you are leaving St. George and it said "Have fun this weekend and remember that I love your more than Diet Coke" another one said "open when you get to the airport" inside it gave him instructions of what airline to go to and what confirmation # to punch in.  Other various envelopes gave him things like a BART ticket, $ for the shuttle tip and some awesome Far Side comics.  His last clue told him which hotel shuttle to get on and I met him in the lobby wearing only dark glasses, a trench coat and leopard print scarf. 
OK, that last part didn't really happen, I just met him in the lobby dressed normally! (but that sounded good didn't it?!) He was surprised and we and an awesome weekend, it was just too short!

On Saturday, the only thing I told him was that we needed to be somewhere @ 1:30. We went to see the play "Billy Elliot" and as we went to the theatre I had some good friends of ours friends sneak up and surprise him again.

We loved the musical and had a fabulous time catching up with friends and enjoying the city. We went to dinner at one of our favorite places. This place is delicious and honestly, what says "romantic" more than a restaurant that the entire menu is based on garlic? YUM! The dinner that keeps on giving!
This is on Columbus Ave. in the heart of "Little Italy" and is worth going to!

On Sunday we walked around San Francisco until our feet hurt. We ate so much great food, we felt we would pop. Our day ended at the Powell St. BART station, where we each headed the opposite direction within 30 seconds of each other.

It was just like in one of those "Chick Flick" movies, where I am on the platform crying and I felt like my heart would crack into little pieces! It was a perfect weekend, except for the end when we had to say goodbye!

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Besides lots of relaxing, eating and enjoying life, these are some of the projects that we did on my trip home over the July 4th holiday...
Hannah and I repainted patio chairs, I can't get enough of this color!

Then we came inside and washed the teal paint off of our hands and painted our nails using this fun technique.

Chandler and his cousins Meg and Tan could have "Mod Podged" all day. They did these fun pictures for their rooms. They used old records as the base. They turned out so cute and obviously they were thrilled with their creations!

Meg with her adorable creation

Saturday, July 9, 2011



Monday, June 27, 2011


What is a married woman living away from her family to do when boredom sets in? Really, I can only entertain the Frat Boys for so long, and most of them have left for the summer ( J/K Lissi! quit freaking out!) So ....I have rediscovered  the beautiful simplicity of Mod Podge, oh so 70's, and quite entertaining.  Chandler had left a large canvas here. My "dorm room" walls looked mighty boring. I had oodles of magazines and a 40% off coupon from Michaels, so of course the natural solution is to do a collage. I have to say it way really fun and rather addicting. It is just a little collage about ME! LIFE! WHIMSEY and DREAMS!
I hope My buddy Jeff Holland keeps his great sense of humor if he ever finds out that I Mod Podged his face, right in the middle of all of my "stuff" you think that it is sac-religious? (I think or hope) he would laugh.

So one collage was just not enough, so I have moved onto smaller projects. LUGGAGE TAGS! They are sort of a work in progress. I am trying some different things with them. Give me your honest opinion please. Here are some prototypes:

I didn't bother to take a picture of the back, it just has address and a few more pictures. Some of these are actually being sent in the mail for Birthday's and Thank You's.

My artistic boy Chandler started this whole "Mod Podging Craze" by re-doing an old drum set that we bought. He came up with the idea and did the whole thing himself, including tearing the drums apart. Makes a $50 drum set look like a work of art doesn't it?

Sunday, June 19, 2011


My right shoulder continually hurts. It wakes me up at night. I really notice it if I have been working in MRI all day and use the computer for everything. But I can't help but wonder if this pain it isn't related to my purse and all of its "indispensable" contents.  I have tried to get a smaller purse, but I ALWAYS end up going to a big bag because quite simply, I have too much stuff. It isn't like I have toddlers and have to carry all of their gadgets around. I have no excuse.  I dumped out my purse on the x-ray table (a very boring day with no patients and nothing else to do and a nice surface to purse out my junk on). Obviously I have an abundance of stuff, such as:

  1. 5#'s worth of lipstuff. Because really what if I want pink gloss instead of neutral? What if I want lipstick instead of gloss in red not orange? What if I need flavored Chapstick instead of plain Carmex? What happens if the all day lipstick doesn't really stay put all day? And who doesn't need the oh so yummy "Menthe Lip Tint" for a quick fix?
  2. What about all of the receipts? It is likely that I don't need every receipt from the daily Diet Coke run @ McDonalds. But what if I need to return stuff? What if I need it to compare to my bank statement? I have too many random pieces of paper. Grocery List's, reminders, BART tickets, gas receipts, several "to do" list's(which include cleaning out purse) unwanted business cards and flyers rudely left on my windshield that get thrown into the mix. I could be more diligent about purging all of this, but it is the least of the weight in my purse!
  3. Mints, gum, more mints, Fiber One Bar, just incase I need a snack. Random wrappers from consumed "stuff"
  4. 3#'s of loose change that in a hurry gets thrown to the bottom of the bag.
  5. Miscellaneous stuff such as: toothbrush and toothpaste, floss, wet wipes, hand sanitizer, nail file and sunscreen samples. My work badge, my x-ray markers. ipod, sometimes ipad.  Calculator, several pens, and I must have the little cleaning kit for my glasses (if it is summer add sunglasses and contact case to the list, plus reading glasses so I can read if I need to put contacts in, damn having bi-focals!).  Numerous recipes clipped from magazines torn out from waiting room magazines (they said I could! and yes, someday I do plan to try them all!)
So you can see why I could not possibly be happy with a small purse. What would I do without all of my vital stuff that no doubt and one time or another I will need? And I forgot to list my cute little pill box with meds like Aleve, for when my shoulder really hurts? I am a good one to travel with because I have anything you might need (probably in duplicate). I have no idea how girls with little purses do it!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


And my very favorite way to get to the city is on Amtrak. It is a stress free ride and the trains are always very clean, fast and efficient. I love the sights from the train. It is like a "birds-eye" view of things that you normally would not see driving. Here are some of my favorite sights:

I think the graffiti is so interesting (is it wrong to like graffiti?) I wonder how long it takes these artists to do the many walls you see covered along the rail lines? It is almost like a "free" zone for graffiti artists because they do not paint over the tagging. This one outside of Richmond has been there for several years.

My kids roll their eyes each time they hear me say that I really want to go work at the port of Oakland (seriously, I do). I would love to go learn all about the shipping industry. To me it is fascinating and you get a great view from Amtrak into the port. I think that the coolest job would be the crane operator that loads and unloads the barges (it doesn't hurt that they make over 150K/year). Did you know they can unload, inspect and reload one of these barges in 24 hours? Call me a geek, but I want to go job shadow at the port!

The mothball fleet

I want to know the history of each ship

To me, the "mothball fleet" looks haunted. All of these huge discarded ships, just sitting in the bay wasting away.  They will soon be slowly dismantled and sold for scrap because they are polluting the bay. So many tons of steel sitting there, all with a story. Before they get rid of them I want someone to take me on a personal tour of their graveyard here in the water and tell me their history. (No doubt you won't be surprised to hear that I love watching the Discovery Channel).

The charming home on the left belongs to romance novelist Danielle Steele's ex-husband. Her home (the former Spreckel's Mansion) is just around the corner.  I did not get a picture of it. It happens to be made of Utah Limestone (not a good choice for the SF climate) and as expensive as the massive home must be, her very luxury fleet of cars parked outside were pretty darn impressive. Sadly, she did not invite us in for tea because she spends most of her time in Paris.

My purpose for venturing to the city for Memorial Day was to do a walking tour that I always wanted to do but never could interest anyone else in the family to do it with me, so I jumped at the chance! The San Francisco Library does several different walking tours of the city. Check them out here. This one was the Victorian Mansions of San Francisco. A very pleasant walk (once I reached the top of the hill) It was a beautiful cool but sunny day and away from the tourist crowds of the city. It gave a charming history of the different homes and styles. Several fascinating tidbits about Victorian life were included.  Did you know that in the homes of the era there were always plenty of chairs in the parlor? If the men were in the parlor and the women entered, the men would stand but it would have been totally SCANDALOUS for them to offer a chair to  a woman....because it would be improper for a woman to sit on a chair that a man's bottom had warmed! Times have changed a bit!