Sunday, December 24, 2017

A few festivities

Yanks RV Resort
Greenfield, CA

It's been a festive week!
We started it all visiting Greg & Connie
up in Morgan Hill.
Their daughter Carrie flew in from Palm Springs.
We've gotten to know their family pretty well!
Carrie brought Bella,
who is just the cutest thing!

Friday night there was a party in the Yanks clubhouse.
Happy hour started at 5, with dinner at 6:30.
I took my fudge and 7 layer bars,
and we shared egg nog and brandy :-)
The resort provided ham,
and people brought lots of good food.

We wandered over around 5,
where Jodi (our manager) and her daughter Mandy were spreading
cream cheese on celery.

George sure looked festive!

Norma works in the office,
and I love working with her!
She is the queen of the selfie :-)

The tables were laid out nicely, and lots of people came,
including staff and spouses, and a few from the park.

All of the staff surprised Jodi and Steve with
a gift card to their favorite local restaurant.
Of course the staff's children had to help!

We love Steve & Jodi!

Our wonderful staff!

Of course tonight is our favorite time..
worship the birth of our Lord,
followed by a nice Chinese food meal!

Cheers and Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Merry Christmas!

Yanks RV Resort
Greenfield, CA

Ah, preparations..

We are having a holiday party at the Yanks clubhouse this Friday.
It's open to all the park, and staff and significant others :-)
Norma (the girl I work with) and I created a sign up sheet,
and started thinking of things to have.

Jodi and Steve are providing ham and potatoes,
and other people have signed up for different appetizers & desserts.

I've decided to pull out some traditional Christmas recipes,
fudge and 7 layer bars.
I gathered together everything..

I started with the 7 layer bars which are 7 different sweet things..
margarine, graham cracker crumbs, coconut, chocolate chips,
butterscotch chips, walnuts and sweetened condensed milk.
Not for anyone on a diet!

First the margarine is melted, and sprinkled evenly
with the graham cracker crumbs.

That is topped with the coconut, chocolate chips,
and butterscotch chips.

A can of sweetened condensed milk is poured on top..

..then the walnuts are spread on top and lightly tapped down.

All that is baked for 30 minutes,

Next I made two batches of fudge, one with walnuts, one plain.

This recipe is my Mom's, she learned how to make it 
in her home economics class in high school!
It's over 60 years old!

It starts with sugar, marshmallows, and evaporated milk
in a saucepan until it boils for exactly 6 minutes.


After the 6 minutes it is poured into a bowl that 
has chocolate chips, margarine, and if desired, walnuts. 

It is stirred until the margarine melts.

It is then poured into a pan with waxed paper,
and put in the fridge until hard.

It is very important to use margarine,
as butter would float to the top when cooling.
Do you know how hard it is to find margarine anymore!?

It's funny using this old recipe, as the measurements 
are based on older packaging.
For example it calls for 6 oz. of chocolate chips,
which is what the bag size used to be.
Now I just measure them :-)

Tomorrow we're getting together with friends,
and Christmas Eve we'll have our traditional Chinese food,
after going to Christmas eve service.
We'll spend it with Mom, Adam, and Jennifer.

We hope everyone has a wonderful holiday!

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Catching up

Yanks RV Resort
Greenfield, CA

Well I'll be. Two weeks since last post.
Mostly been working and doing 'normal life' stuff.

The park has had a few groups within,
and they always bring a lively atmosphere.
The place is all decorated for Christmas, and it looks great.
I need to get out and take some pictures!

Yesterday we drove up to Morgan Hill to spend time
with our friends Connie & Greg.
George did some more tinkering on Greg's RV,
and Connie and I sat inside and chatted the day away.
They fixed us a very good pot roast dinner,
then we made our way back home.

Tomorrow night we're going with them
 to an event at Hahn Winery.
Called a Library Tasting,
it will feature some of their limited wines,
and 'foods of the season'.
We're looking forward to going with them.

We've made plans for a our traditional Christmas Eve dinner,
going out for Chinese.
Sometimes we have to look hard for a restaurant that's open,
but we always enjoy it.
Adam and Jennifer will be joining us,
then go over to their place for dessert afterwards.
All that will be missing is my son Austin.
He's saving his vacation for a trip to Italy next spring.
How cool is that!?

We want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas season!

Thursday, November 30, 2017

The butterflies are here!

Yanks RV Resort
Greenfield, CA

Yesterday was a perfect day to get together with
our friends, Connie & Greg.
We met them halfway, in Salinas,
and then drove with them over to Pacific Grove.

Our mission was to go to the butterfly grove,
and see the Monarchs that have migrated here.

We saw them last year, at the tail end of the migration,
so there weren't as many to see.
This is the beginning of the migration,
you can read about it here.

The four of us saw a couple of pretty good clusters.
When they're clinging to the tree and each other,
they look like dead leaves.

They hang there until the temperature gets above 55ยบ,
then they'll fly around looking for nectar.

There was a male warming up in the sun..

Connie took a break on the bench,
and the local cat jumped up for a snuggle :-)

There is a nice trail that winds around the grove of Eucalyptus trees.
Docents are stationed in different places with a telescope
focusing on clusters of the butterflies.
The lens is fed into an Ipad, so that people have an easier time seeing them.

Although the docent said they current count is about 7,000,
later in the winter there will be so much more!

We got some silly shots of Greg & Connie in the butterfly pose..

We opted for the pose on the butterfly bench..

Connie was kind enough to bring some lite munchies,
and we brought some things to add,
so we drove over to see the ocean.

We found a picnic table at Lover's Point,
and attempted a selfie shot :-)

Oh well :-(

The waves were crashing on the rocks,
even though it was a windless day.

 These two guys tried to encroach on our picnic!

After enjoying the sunshine, we headed over to Fisherman's Wharf
to check out more sights.

They were just starting to decorate for Christmas.

From the wharf we could see a pod of dolphins,
but even with my telephoto lens, 
I only got the back fin of one.
You can see it just to the right of the buoy.

This is the first time I've seen so many jellyfish
right off the wharf as well!
I did enhance the colors a bit so as to see them better.

There is never a shortage of sea lions barking away,
or sunning themselves.

These two were just over the railing down below the wharf.
Lazy bums!

I caught this sea otter rolling around,
but he was just out of reach to get a good shot
of his cute face.

We always enjoy the fishing boats sitting,
waiting to go out.

 Herons and pelicans can be found sitting on the rocks as well.

The four of us really enjoyed our day out.
We have future plans as well, can't wait!

After we got back into Salinas, George and I dropped by Mom's
and decorated her apartment for Christmas.
It looks very festive!

Today we're off, I'm doing laundry,
and we put our decorations up as well.

It's going to be a great Christmas!