My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

ABC Wednesday: G

It's ABC Wednesday once again and Gee, we're at G already?!
Then for your Gratification, may I present:

Garden Goats & Geraniums...

A display window in a store two doors down from our hotel
in wonderful Old Town Ft Collins, CO this June.
That empty chair had held the smallest of the three Goats,
and Gosh he was cute, instantly winning my Capricorn heart.
But he sold before I could even Grab a photo of him!
So G is also for Glum, Grumbling & Greatly disappointed.
(How could someone be so Graspingly Greedy?
Gads, the nerve of some people, Glomming the Goodies I like!)
;-)
A Grotesque...

One of a pair of Grotesques Guarding a home across from our bank.
Perhaps our bank should consider Getting some, too! :-)
(Here's a fun nugget of knowledge for you: 
Gargoyle has a water spout, a Grotesque does not)

Golden Spice Pancakes (or if you prefer, Griddlecakes!)...

Yum! One of our favorite breakfasts,
photographed in the Golden light of sunrise before we made Gluttons of ourselves! :-)
Here's the recipe* so you can Gobble up some yourself!
(*Our changes: we use only whole wheat pastry flour,
2 cups of orange juice + 1/4 cup vanilla soy milk,
and we cook them in a non-stick skillet without oil.
And in this batch we used craisins instead of Golden raisins).

For more G Goodies, take a Gander at this week's

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

BOOYA!


YAY!!!

Makes me wish I were a college freshman again! (Well, almost!) :-)


Friday, August 26, 2011

SkyWatch Friday: Tess :-)

(Tess, our fun-loving rescued Chow-Aussie mix, has commandeered my post for this week's SkyWatch Friday because she thinks these photos of her, cruising oh-so-cooly in her Doggles, showcase the summer sky quite nicely. And since I can't argue, I've agreed to type this for her while she dictates)...
Hi, human peoples, I'm Tess! My favorite cruising song is Adventure Dog, but I reckon it might have limited appeal to you humans, what with your unsophisticated taste in music. So I'm sharing my second favorite cruising song with you instead, along with my photos, so that you may more fully enjoy the Full Cruising Experience. Besides, it's a great song for cruising into the weekend and last week of official summer. Woof! (Translation: Enjoy!)


This is me looking serious and dignified,
and this is me looking attentive and earnest.

Here I am looking deep and thoughtful,

and this is me looking humorous and fun-loving!
Oh yeah, and there's also the sky and trees and stuff.
*yawn*

I also made Mom post this live-action video again because a lot of you haven't seen it yet, and the rest of you who have will probably want to watch it again, because you just can't get enough of me. (Mom says I'm pretty full of myself. But really I'm just full of kibble and joie d'vivre!)

If you'd like to see more pictures of me in my Doggles (and why on earth wouldn't you?), click here! Thanks for stopping by to admire my super-coolness (oh yeah, and to admire the sky too, yadda yadda), and have a great weekend!
And don't forget: "Adopt a stray, neuter and spay!"
The Animal Rescue Site
For more skies (tho probably fewer dogs)
visit

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thursday Challenge: Blue



Though not a Blue Moon, this just-past-full moon I spied early one morning recently was so pretty against the deep blue of the late summer sky that I had to grab my camera. My point-and-shoot has difficulty taking well-focused photos of the moon, but I like this capture nonetheless...


How about a little music to go with it? Here's "Blue" from Leann Rimes' album of the same name...


MusicPlaylist
Music Playlist at MixPod.com

See more of the Blues at this week's Thursday Challenge

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

ABC Wednesday: F on the Fly


It's Fortunate that I'd Finished most of today's ABC Wednesday post last week when I'd had the time or I'd be MIA this round, unless I just posted a photo of real estate For sale signs (selling and trying to Find a new house is giving us Fits!), or a self-portrait of BW and me for Frazzled, Flummoxed, Frustrated, Flustered, Fatigued, Fretful and Fried (and a Famous F word that's even more Fitting but not suitable For a Family-Friendly blog! LOL) But thanks to my Foresight last week, instead of having something Frightful like that Foisted upon you, you can look at these Four Fine scenes instead...

Flying Faerie

Fittingly, she hangs at the bottom of our garden :-)

Four Friends

Swatting Flies!

Fox

"Foxy Lady" by Chuck Weaver

Frosted


For more Fabulous Fun with F, visit...


Friday, August 19, 2011

SkyWatch Friday: Summer Sunrises

For this week's SkyWatch Friday, I give you a month of summer sunrises ~ all taken from our house on the side of a Wyoming mountain ~ along with some inspiring quotes and a perfect song accompaniment to enhance your viewing pleasure. :-)

July 19, 2011

I wake up in the morning torn between the desire
to save the world and to enjoy the world.
This makes it hard to plan the day.
~ E.B. White

August 3

I'll tell you how the sun rose,
a ribbon at a time...
~ Emily Dickinson

August 8

How glorious a greeting the sun gives the mountains!
~ John Muir

August 8

Climb up on some hill at sunrise.
Everybody needs perspective once in a while,
and you'll find it there.
~ Robb Sagendorph

August 12

Each day comes bearing its gifts.
Untie the ribbons.
~ Ann Ruth Schabacker

August 14

The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you.
Don't go back to sleep...
~ Jelaluddin Rumi


And here's an appropriate song for my readers in the southern hemisphere, as your winter gives way to sunny spring...


For more sky photos from both hemispheres, visit...
In memory of Klaus Peter,
SkyWatch co-founder and co-host
1960-2011
Vita mutatur, non tollitur
(Life is changed, not taken away)

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thursday Challenge: Friends


This week's Thursday Challenge is

FRIENDS (Gatherings, Parties, Time Together, Sharing,...)

Friends come in all shapes, sizes, colors, creeds, and species! Here are some photos of friends, a couple from my archives and most fresh off my camera...

Some friends really stick their necks out, while others can act a bit snooty at times...

Jane Doe and Willow hang out on our front porch

Other friends are great at teamwork, dutifully staffing their posts and sharing the responsibility of keeping watch. (For what, exactly, only they know)...

Josie, Willow and Tess stand guard among the lupine,
perhaps watching for the Lupine Express!

And when one of them (we won't name names, but her initials are Tess) falls asleep on the job, the others cover for her...

Las Tres Amigas at Whitney Commons

Sometimes one friend inspires the other to stick with their exercise program by running circles around them...

Robyn's granddog Ani leads Willow a merry chase

Some friends work together to figure things out...

When brothers Val & Tino came to live with us in mid-Feb 2008,
they were baffled by the purpose of their exercise wheel!

But working together, they not only figured it out quickly,
they started inventing various games for it,
many of which they still play well into their golden years!

This theme gave me an opportunity to share additional photos that Andrea and Robyn emailed me recently of our fun little Vegan Meetup breakfast picnic...

Now I have proof I was actually there! :-)
Robyn, me and Ken (photo by Andrea)

Me, Andrea, Ken and Buffy (photo by Robyn)

And it also provides an opportunity to share some very recent photos of Mocha (and his pasture buddy "Prairie") in his wonderful new home!

Prairie and Mocha (wearing his fly mask) abandon
grazing along the lovely creek to come get some cookies!

Cookies eaten, the boys bid farewell.

As do I, till next week's challenge!

Visit this week's friendly Thursday Challenge!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

ABC Wednesday: All Ears!


Yep, we're all Ears for another ABC Wednesday! :-)

Another lurker bunny in our yard

Precocious Baby PJ on our patio

A delightful donkey Eager to make friends

Tex
(She's CEO of the ranch where we board Mocha!) ;-)

Ani, my friend Robyn's Engaging grand-dog

Which pair of Endearing, Enchanting Ears did you Enjoy most?



Sunday, August 14, 2011

Hot days, cool eats

As the Dog Days wind down, I realize it's been a dog's age since I did my last food/recipe post. Here's why

1. I'm an uninspired cook in the summer. I'd rather be out in the sunshine, am busy with outdoor projects, and prefer to avoid heating up the joint with stove and/or oven. Autumn will likely find me eagerly poring over my accumulated recipes and cookbooks and hugging my estranged kitchen gadgets to my so-called bosom ("Built for speed," chortles BW, "not for comfort!" lol), but during the hot summer months our food tends to be simple, quick and, preferably, cold. It's all delicious and healthy, but I've usually either blogged about it before or consider it just too simple to be blog-worthy.

2. I've had too many other things to post about instead!

3. After sharing photos and descriptions of all the amazing food we ate in Colorado, I felt a need to put a lot of posts between them and this, hoping it might reduce any likelihood that our relatively simple cuisine be compared unfavorably. ;-)

But we haven't exactly been fasting around here this summer (not by a long shot!), and a few dishes that we've especially been enjoying have inspired some Kodak moments. So these are the recipes I consider worth sharing as we in the northern hemisphere bask in the last sweltering days of August, while you in the southern half of the globe are looking forward to summer nosh. Besides, BW and I are marking our 11th Veganniversary this month, and what better way to celebrate than with yummy food shared with friends? :-)


Black Bean and Corn Salsa...

The McDougalls call this salsa, but we eat it like salad.
Whenever I make it I always make a double batch,
but it still only lasts half as long as we think it should!

Black Bean & Corn Salsa
from McDougall Quick & Easy by John McDougall, MD and Mary McDougall

● 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
● 2 tomatoes, chopped (or 1 can organic fire-roasted tomatoes)
● ¾ cup frozen corn kernels, thawed (I use organic)
● 4 green onions, chopped
● 2 tablespoons chopped & canned green chilis
● 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
● ¼ cup lemon juice (fresh squeezed)
● ½ tsp ground cumin
● several twists of freshly ground pepper
● ½ cup diced avocado (optional)
I also like to add a few some several sliced black olives :-)

Combine all ingredients, except avocado, in a bowl. Mix well. Stir in avocado, if desired, immediately before serving.

Makes 3 cups. Prep time: 10 minutes

Lemony Baked Tofu with Rosemary...

Served with brown jasmine rice and steamed broccoli
(After taking this, I seasoned the broccoli with tamari & nooch!)

Here's a typical, simple meal of the sort we enjoy in hot weather, starring this tofu recipe I found at the wonderful blog, Cadry's Kitchen. We've made many batches of her Lemony Baked Tofu with Rosemary this summer (replacing the oil with an extra ½ tablespoon each of tamari and lemon juice). It can be baked or grilled and is delicious hot or cold. Its lemony, herbed flavor is fresh and light and perfect for summer, while the marinade is quick and simple to prepare. And its aroma while baking is divine!


And finally

Sorbetto!

Since indulging in vegan gelato and sorbetto during our stay in Fort Collins, BW was inspired to whip up several delicious batches of sorbetto at home, all from the superb Nonna's Italian Kitchen by Bryanna Clark Grogan. It contains many sorbetto, granita and gelato recipes (and variations) in several flavors, along with illuminating information on the differences between them, instructions for making alcohol-free versions, and of course lots of other delicious, vegan Italian dessert and non-dessert recipes. So while Bryanna gave me her gracious permission to share the recipe for her chocolate sorbet, I highly recommend you buy her cookbook so you don't miss out on all the other goodies in it!

Strawberry Sorbet
(Sorbetto di Fragole)

Lemon Sorbet
(Sorbetto di Limone)

Chocolate Sorbet
(Sorbetto di Choccolata)

Chocolate Sorbet
Sorbetto di Choccolata (© Bryanna Clark Grogan, 1998)
(soy-free)
Yield: About 3 cups
This dessert tastes so rich and intense that it's hard to believe that it is a water ice! Only for confirmed chocolate-lovers!

Note: Be sure to use only Dutch cocoa.

● 2¼ cups water
● 1 cup unbleached sugar (we use sucanat)
● ½ cup unsweetened Dutch cocoa
● 2 tablespoons coffee, almond, hazelnut, or orange liqueur* (we use Triple Sec)
● optional: 1 tablespoon grated orange zest (preferably organic) (we make a different orange variation; see notes below)

Place the sugar with 1 cup of the water in a medium stainless steel saucepan, and dissolve the sugar, stirring it over high heat. Whisk in the cocoa powder over low heat, and continue to whisk until it is completely smooth and a little cooked. Whisk in the remaining water and other ingredients. Chill the mixture, then freeze according to your machine's directions.
Per ½ cup serving: Calories: 150, Protein: 2 g, Carbohydrate: 33 g, Fat: 1 g.

* The liqueur adds some flavor and keeps the sorbet from freezing rock-hard. If you don't use alcohol, Bryanna's cookbook has instructions for making an alcohol-free version.

The taste and texture of this reminds us of Fudgsicles! Yum. As you can see from my photo, I like to sprinkle mine with a little unsweetened coconut.

We also enjoy our chocolate-mint and chocolate-orange variations. For chocolate-mint, we add ¼ tsp peppermint extract. For chocolate-orange, we substitute 1 cup of the water with 1 cup of organic orange juice and add 1 tsp orange extract. (We've yet to try adding the orange zest because we haven't had any organic on hand).

Update - our latest favorite version of the chocolate sorbetto! - A couple of years ago, BW started making this using 2½ cups of brewed Teeccino Maya Organic ChocolatĂ© herbal coffee instead of water, reduced the amount of sucanat to ¾ cup, and using a well-rounded ½ cup of unsweetened Dutch cocoa powder (the amount of Triple Sec remains the same). It's very rich and dark-chocolately, made even more so with a sprinkling of organic cocoa nibs! :-)
I hope you enjoy some of these easy, healthy, tasty vegan treats before this strange and crazy summer comes to a close. Keep cool, calm and kind, and bon appétit!

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SOME CURRENT & RECENT READING...

SOME CURRENT & RECENT READING...

  • INFERNO ~ Dan Brown
  • MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD & EVIL ~ John Berendt
  • MY NOTORIOUS LIFE: A NOVEL ~ Kate Manning
  • ONE SUMMER: AMERICA, 1927 ~ Bill Bryson
  • QUIET: THE POWER OF INTROVERTS IN A WORLD THAT CAN'T STOP TALKING ~ Susan Cain
  • THE BEAUTIFUL CIGAR GIRL ~ Daniel Stashower
  • THE DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY ~ Erik Larson
  • THE SHADOWS, KITH AND KIN ~ Joe R. Lansdale
  • THE TIPPING POINT ~ Malcolm Gladwell
There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"