Wednesday, November 30, 2016


The Black Buddha is wiser than most.

He knows to sit in a ray of sun on these cool wintery days.

He sat there without twitching while SWMBO took numerous photographs.

Until he came out of his meditation to look at what was disturbing it.

"Oh, there she is with that damned camera again."

Tuesday, November 29, 2016


Yes, today is better with the sunshine back even though the temperature is still a bit crisp out there.

But yesterday was a different day.

Bits of snow and occasionally rain sprinkled my area from these portentous skies.

But nothing stuck and today is a sunny day.


Monday, November 28, 2016


If you peer intently at this photograph you can see a few white spots.

The photograph was taken earlier today and those white spots are snow falling from our Arizona sky.

Keep in mind that we live at just over 5,100 feet so our weather is quite a bit different than that of Phoenix or Tucson or Yuma.

Regardless of that, the temperature was in the low 40's so none of the snow stuck here.

But winter appears to have crashed into us as the high temperature will be in the 40's every day for the foreseeable future.

And to someone accustomed to our normally balmy weather, that's downright chilly.

We're retired so barring the trips to doctor's visits and grocery stores, we can simply hunker down and stay warm in our home.

The BRD and her Beau Jack have another solution.

They're heading for Cabo San Lucas in a few days for a week in the sun.

It's 83 there right now.

Sunday, November 27, 2016


(Catalyst is acting a little weird today)

Saturday, November 26, 2016


. . . . to look a lot like Christmas,

everywhere you go.

This homeowner in our development has a big evergreeen tree in his front yard and he has it decorated for the Yule.

It looks a big odd there, surrounded as it is by the other non-Christmas vegetation around his house.

But it was a nice discovery as we took a drive yesterday.

Friday, November 25, 2016


Oh joy!

It's the hap-hap-happiest day of the week.

It's Friday!

And you know what that means.

No, no, no, stop planning your tours of the shopping meccas for Black Friday.

It's time for the Friday Funnies!

But first, this warning.

I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving and ate too much.

All right, that's enough merriment for awhile.

Until we meet again, please accept my wish that you have a wonderful weekend of Thanksgiving leftovers and always  (you can finish it, can't you?)  remember to keep laughing!

Here, kitty-kitty . . .

(uh-oh, he got there first.)

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Wednesday, November 23, 2016


For "foodies" tomorrow is one of the most important days of the year.

It's supposed to be a day for giving thanks for any and every thing good in your life.

But it has evolved into a day to overeat, usually of turkey and a variety of foods that accompany it.

Dressing (cooked outside of the turkey) and/or stuffing (cooked inside of the turkey), sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, various vegetable dishes, cranberries in a variety of forms, olives, onions, cheese, crackers, bread, rolls, and on and on.

Dessert?  Always pie.  Pumpkin pie is the traditional one.  But sometimes sweet potatoe pie, apple, cherry, blueberry, pecan (in the American south mainly), maybe peach, or whatever.

Or cheesecake.

We're doing our traditional, non-traditional Thanksgiving Day dinner.

We haven't done a full turkey for years, decades maybe.

Since turkey breasts became available in supermarkets, that has been our turkey dinner of choice.

But tomorrow, SWMBO is preparing Spatchcocked (butterflied) Chicken instead of turkey.

We discovered that dish in the past year and we both like it, probably better than turkey.

Alongside the turkey, er, chicken the accompanying dishes will be the same as if we actually had the turkey.

We will be only the two of us.

The BRD has been overwhelmed this year as she and her Beau Jack move into a new home so they will dine separately from us whenever they get the time.

Thanksgiving can be a day fraught with peril, as members of one's extended family get together with all of their disparate views on the news of the day.

Arguments can develop, feelings can be hurt.

Which makes our feasting day this year all the easier.

And it has another value.

SWMBO is making a pumpkin pie today or tomorrow but she made an apple pie yesterday.

And since we are just the two of us, we didn't have to wait for the big day.

We cut it and had the first pieces last night!

Happy Thanksgiving, Gentle Readers.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016


In 1987 we visited our longtime friends, Tom and Lana Cochrun, in Indianapolis a few months before we headed south.

Way south.

I was presented with this homemade birthday card some time later.


While parts of that saga are not true, we did indeed move to Mexico and spent a mostly happy 4-1/2 years in the Guadalajara area.

Monday, November 21, 2016


In spite of the picture of dusty hot dry Arizona you may have from all those old western movies, we do actually get rain here.

Today is one of those days.

Friday, November 18, 2016


Ah Gentle Readers you have come through for the old Catalyst once again, providing him with lots of good content for these weekly shenanigans.

Thank you all but especially this week to my buddy Timmer, who sent a plethora of today's contributions plus more for later.

I just wish when he writes to tell me about his hired leaf gatherer, John, that he wouldn't call me Dear.

Be that as it may, let us proceed.

All right, Gentle Readers, that's enough for this week.

Now listen up.

I want you to go out there and have yourselves a scrumptious weekend and always remember to keep laughing.

Here, kitty-kitty . . .

Thursday, November 17, 2016


As autumn becomes late autumn and heads toward winter, the temperature and the leaves drop.

What was once a beautiful sight . . .

. . . becomes a mess and a chore.

SWMBO and I spent yesterday morning raking and gathering the leaves from our red maple tree.

They are beautiful when freshly fallen.

But all that raking and bagging I could do without.

We filled five large bags and it did make a difference.

But the wind has come up and we know we'll have more work to do before the season ends.

There are other trees of a different variety and they all shed their leaves on their own schedule.

When I was a kid we used to enjoy raking and piling the leaves in the street just off the curb and then burning them.

The smoky fires left a smell in the air that lingers in my mind as a memory of a simpler era.

We're not allowed to burn leaves now so they fill bags which in turn fill dumpsters which in their turn are hauled away by the garbage trucks.

And the wind blows and the leaves fall and the transitions continue.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016


As I promised yesterday, I'm going to show you some of what SWMBO does to make an excellent Beef Bourguignon.

It is basically a beef stew with the meat braised in red wine and beef broth as well as vegetables.

It originated in the Burgundy region of France.

The beginning involves a lot of knifework on beef, carrots, white onions, green onions and garlic.

The mushroom preparation comes later.

The counter next to the stove holds some other ingredients, including a can of beef broth and two cups of red wine.

The afore-mentioned mushrooms have now been cut up and are ready for the saute pan . . .

. . . which is heating a couple of tablespoons of butter.

Butter melted, the mushrooms go in to be wilted down and browned.

In the old days this would all have been done in a big black iron pot but today's crockpots make the cooking a snap.

The dining was delicious and your scribe, in his French personification, expressed his pleasure.

Wait, Frenchy, how good was it?

(I'm looking a bit rough these days as my winter beard is growing.)

Tuesday, November 15, 2016


The intrepid blogger Catalyst did something rare last night.

He ventured outside after dark.

With camera in hand he ventured into the darkness looking for signs of life.

He found only an eerie night at first.

But then.

"What light through yonder window breaks?  It is the east, and Juliet is the sun."

Bet you weren't expecting Shakespeare, were you?

Well, it wasn't the sun, nor Juliet.

It was the Supermoon appearing in the night sky.

It came up a peach colored orb and it truly was an amazing and wonderful sight.

Unfortunately my tiny camera was not up to the job.

This was about the best I could do.

So the Supermoon has come and gone and I scurried back into my abode to Judy's delicious French onion soup.

It must be French week at the Catalyst's home.

Tomorrow I'll show you the preparation of her Beef Bourguignon.

P.S. If you want to see some spectacular shots of the moon, take a look at these from my blogger friend Judy.