In the second installment of my "From The - To The" series, we'll be heading west and north to the Ocean town where our dear Marianne, cook extradinaire and beloved Birthday Poster lives with her darling husband Russ. Another adorable and most hospitable
As mentioned in Part I, DH and I travel to SoCal each year for an extended stay during Spring. And, honestly, it's really the only way to do California. There is so much to see and do. Much like Oregon, within an hour's drive you can be
in the mountains, desert or seaside. I love where Marianne lives. It's probably as close as you can get (temperature wise) to where we live in Oregon. Very mild climate. I don't do extreme cold or hot! Ha, I don't do extreme anything! I think I just qualified myself
as a Sissy! (oh wait! we have extreme rain...well there goes that theory)
When Marianne and I first met, courtesy of Mauigirl's Las Vegas Bash the summer of 2011, we immediately hit it off. I discovered she loves to read. I LOVE to read and belong to a Book Club. As we got to know each other, I learned that
Marianne likes birds. I'm an avid Birder and try to get out a couple times a month with my binocs to bird watch. Marianne has a daughter the same age as my daughter, Christine NICU RN and (don't get mad girls) that has provided us with some topics of conversation.
Marianne has two little grandgals that keep her on her toes as do I. Our common interests beyond the AR bond sealed the deal in the friendship department. I am still just very amazed that after a lifetime of work and raising kids, becoming a Grandma and just
recently a Great-Grandma that many of us have forged new (later-in-life) friendships. Thank You Allrecipes!
We always have such a special time with the Russ and Marianne and below are some photos I hope you'll enjoy. We sure had fun doing the things that made them photo worthy!
Again, I would like to thank my precious AR buddies for allowing us the extreme pleasure of coming to your homes. Our time with you is very special to us and I would not trade it for anything!!
There's the Gang at the now infamous Souza Tequila Party 2013
It makes me smile looking at the friendly faces of my AR Friends!
We had a wonderful time! AR Peeps know how to Party!
And, with hosts like Russ & Marianne and the superb food
brought by everyone, how could we NOT have a good time?
After the Tequila Bash, we stayed on for a few more days of fun and frolicking by the SEA!
Marianne in her awesome kitchen making Swedish Pancakes for our Breakfast!
(you may recall that she is Swedish) It's her Trademark recipe she copied from her Mother.
Well, if that just didn't make us feel special!
And here is Marianne's perfectly made stack of Swedish Pancakes.
Bet you can't eat just one! We couldn't.
But, wait... did you know there is a right way to eat your Swedish Pancakes?
As demonstrated by Russ, Marianne's DH....
First you slather on your favorite topping.
This was jam.
Next, insert the pancake between the bottom and third tine of the fork.
That looks easy, right? He's such a pro!
Then, commence with the ROLL. Twisting your fork around, over and over until......
You now have a perfectly rolled Swedish Pancake you can add another topping to
or just slice through with the edge of your fork for a tidy bite-sized piece of pure heaven!
I must pause here to give Russ kudos for his brilliant Swedish Pancake Roll tutorial.
I had him show me several times for the sake of the photo.
What a good guy!
And, BTW.... I eat my crepes that way now. Oh what a good "learner" I am!
When we were down in SoCal in 2012, Marianne said...
"When you come next year,
we will go Bird Watching on the Bolsa Chica."
And, we did! What a beautiful and wonderful time we had
early one morning while our fellas slept in.
We walked around the entire edges of the park. There are many more
trails to explore, but we ran out of time. Next time Marianne!
Look just above where the land ends. You can see the rain coming down through the clouds.
Another view of it raining off in the distance. It was breathtaking in person!
Just above the placards describing all the
birds you can see at the Bolsa Chica,
is highway 101 and the ocean
I have a fascination photographing trails.
I so wanted to take a detour down this one.
THIS is The Bolsa Chica!
A beautiful wildlife preserve with miles of walking trails, flora and fauna and wildlife.
We had a such good time walking, talking, bird watching and snapping photos.
I loved every second of our time exploring this
nicely maintained Nature Preserve!
Two Bird Watchers having a wonderful time together!
Below is some of the magnificent fowl of the Bolsa Chica.
Mr. Goose was curious about us and when he decided
he'd had enough, as they say.... " He Left The Building!"
Aren't these little sand flowers beautiful?
The amazing Fauna of the Bolsa Chica.
It was a beautiful morning that fed my soul.
Thank you dear Marianne for the chance to do what I love.
Be outdoors enjoying the beauty of God'd Creation
and the joy of your friendship as we walked and talked.