Posted tagged ‘Summer Silliness’

MOSCOW MULE – (Improved)

May 16, 2017

(From time to time  I post a recipe —  not unusual  .  .  .)

There are so many variations of the recipe for a Moscow Mule.    But since I had no experience with any of them,   I think the one Son and I used on Sunday was – the best!

MM glass

We used glasses – that’s already a variation from the copper cups you’re supposed to use.



couple ounces of vodka    (we used rum;  rum improves everything)
three ounces of GOOD ginger Beer    (it’s not beer, but a fizzy, boldly-flavored ginger ale)
juice of half a lime   (or a few tablespoons of  bottled lime juice)
a few sprinkles of sugar – to your taste
a teaspoon or so of maraschino cherry juice

Put ingredients in a shaker.      . . .  “shaken not stirred”   or blended

Shake it up,  . . .     (Please see added instruction in the comment below!   There’s a way you should do this!)  . . .   pour into your drinking vessel,  garnish with a lime wedge,   maybe  sprinkle with  a little powdered sugar

Keep it cold.   Somehow.    (That’s why you use a copper cup;  it holds the cold better.)


Well, maybe that’s a BIG variant from the original recipe,  but it’s summer!                     Hot weather makes you do strange things.

MM copper


Hat tip to my Friday morning Bible study class –  who told me all about this drink.

Hat tip and a thanks to Son who already knew about this –  and made it for me!



June 29, 2014

Okay,  I”m really weary tonight.   Come along to a little museum with me,  but take note of the “Summer Silliness” in the Tag Line.

“Driving for dinosaurs”


Today was my  “tourist” day to search for dinosaurs — and I found them —SAMSUNG

There must be a lot of other dinosaur lovers out here in the West, because there were dinosaurs all over.


I did a double-take when I saw this one welcoming me to the gas pumps!   (Now, I don’t for a second believe that petroleum comes from smushed dinosaurs;  nevertheless,  for some reason,  gasoline is called “fossil fuel.”  I think this guy is safe from our hungry automobiles.)

So, these guys seemed to know where to go to find the REAL dinosaurs:


(I gave up a couple meals today to be able to afford these guys for me and Cooper. . . .)

Here was our destination:


“Wyoming State Museum”

Their dinosaur exhibit — who named this?


R.ex   I.n    P.ieces    ?

SAMSUNGThere were a few nice arrangements to teach children about dinosaurs, in general.     I was used to visiting the huge professional “dinosaur” museums in Montana, last year.   This was more of a small town effort,  but I accepted it for what it was, and enjoyed being reminded of things I like about dinosaurs,  like size comparisons:

SAMSUNG“Man and  dinosaur femur.”

Many of the bones were inexplicably black:

SAMSUNGThere was no one around to ask why.     The museum was quite proud of having this on display.  It’s a complete skull of an Allosaurus . . .   which they named Big Al, of course.

I got in on the comparisons:
SAMSUNGThat’s not quite a dinosaur fossil, but rather the heel bone of a North American mastodon.    Oh, how I would have loved to see these creatures in great herds on our Plains.   I put my (blurry) hand next to the heel and felt very small.

Moving up ahead even further in time,   the museum had very thoughtful displays of the North American Indian tribes.

SAMSUNGThey had many artifacts from the past few centuries, with explanations that were interesting as well as descriptive.   (I know there is quite a skill to writing these little signs that museums display.   I have a friend who writes well, and I admired her even more when I found out that she’s written many of the signs used in our own state museum displays.)

We promote and protect the culture of the North American Indians.    We are also fostering the recovery of many of their skills.    One day out here in Wyoming, some thoughtless teenagers stole a famous ancient artifact called “Turtle Rock.”    It was made about three centuries ago – I think by the Shoshone — and it was visited in situ by many tourists.


Eventually, the rock, that round rock there with the faint painting of a turtle on it,  was recovered.   This time it was placed in the State Museum, in a display that looks just like where it was first made out in the rocky wilderness.

It’s very much worth it to visit museums.    There is much to be proud of – and sometimes we need a little self-congratulations.


WHAT’S IT – # 18

June 20, 2014

A long time ago  (in 2011, exactly)  I wrote a series of fun postings called “What’s It?”       I posted interesting photos that just have no common explanation.  Turns out I have another photo for you, and this is #18.


Now, as I mentioned a few days ago,  I am going to be on the road again soon.    I promise myself this time that I won’t get out of the car and hike for hours through wilderness and desert where there are signs that warn of bear, rattlesnake, or that give instructions about how to fight off a puma!!

But I will be traveling alone.

And I kind of wonder about signs like this.  Anyone know what I ought to be worried about?


 To see previous “What’s It”s   you can use the Search function, bottom, lower right column.    Maybe I’ll attempt to use the “Page” function that WordPress offers.  I always thought that would be a handy way to organize things.  



July 22, 2013

Well,  deadly “fun with geography,” I guess.    

When I went to high school,  fortunately for my brain they had not yet started the “social studies”  nonsense that was imposed on younger American students.      Therefore,  one year one of our interesting textbooks was called Physical Geography. . .

geo text not mine

 . . .and then next year we received a book called Cultural Geography,  which in turn set us up for the following year’s  study of Economics, for which I’m also grateful.

strata   It was a new concept to me (at fourteen and fifteen years old)  that geography was so vast a subject that it was divided into the physical and the cultural categories.  From all that “vastness” of facts and information and research,  I developed a real interest in geology: landforms, what’s under the land that we see,  the development of the continents, what’s in our oceans, what’s in the various layers of our atmosphere.     

I’m curious about everything.  I love maps and I love to travel.   By car.   And when I read the news,  I usually look for “earth changes.”  So I took note today of the large number of very strong earthquakes over the past three days.   Much destruction, many injuries, loss of life  (75 so far in China, this weekend,  and more than 600 missing.) More, stronger earthquakes, with greater frequency in recent years.

The one in New Zealand was described as being accompanied by an unusual number of sinkholes…..and that got me thinking about all the sinkhole photos I had been collecting on my computer’s Desktop. 

Sinkhole Atlanta

 And the photos are getting in my way,  so I’ll dump some of them here

Sinkhole alabama


You’ve probably seen the sinkhole in Florida that swallowed a man’s bedroom – while he was in his bed.   They never found him.   Heartbreaking.   Shocking.    And that sinkhole has now expanded to their neighbor’s home.   Here are some more pictures.

sinkhole road

Sometimes in the middle of a city!   

sinknole guatemala

Sometimes they eat a  car.

sinkhole car

Sometimes more than one car at a time.   (These near my old hometown, near Chicago.)

Sinkhole chicago

One tried to swallow a Lowe’s truck.

Sinkhole Lowes truck

I think they’re looking for someone here:

Sinkhole China

When I was planning all my road trips this year I began to wonder if I should include some “contingencies.”   Here’s one that was determined to be a sinkhole, not a landslide:

sinkhole highway


I’ve heard a very interesting explanation for all these sinkholes happening so frequently in our present time.

sinknhole china farms

I’m inclined to believe that explanation,  but it’s just going to rattle around in my head for a while  until I get more confirmation.   (There is an analogy with making meatballs) . . .

sinkhole portugal

. . . .  And I just don’t have the math nor the sources to verify on my own why these are happening now.

Be careful when you’re golfing.   There are man-sized sinkholes too.   Someone had half fallen in.   But don’t worry.

sinkhole don't golf there

They got him, and then they inspected the hole:

Sinkhole Bye bye

Bicycling isn’t so safe either.   Here is a sinkhole (or “earth subsidence” – maybe a sinkhole in the making )  –

sinkhole not a hole in spain

Getting tired of sinkhole pictures?   I am, too.    I was going to write about sinkholes a couple of months ago, and I easily found about a half dozen recent sinkhole photos.     Then each time, every couple of weeks,  when I thought about sinkholes again,  there were many more examples for me to “collect.” 

Three, four, five new sinkholes every week.      New ones are not hard to find!

They’re probably happening every day somewhere.

Sweet dreams!


(I’ll do the meatballs tomorrow.)



June 19, 2013

“Thithering.”   As in “hither, thither, and yon. ”   A handy phrase from the English dictionary.    I know I just got home from a long Western trip,  but I’m getting ready to go on another one tomorrow.    This time it’s family interests that compel me.

250px-KeweenawPeninsula_svg    Our destination in that white horn that juts out into Lake Superior.    It is the location of the international  FinnFest 2013 event.    A few years ago, this was a very important celebration for Hubbie who was 100% Finn,  and since I am one-half Finn, that means Son is three-fourths Finn;   and so we are going, Son and I,   to honor our Finnishness.

Lake Superior is the Far, Far North.  I’m packing jackets and sweaters — even in June.   I’ve been there before —  in June.

Let’s see…….am I forgetting anything for my suitcase?   Am I overlooking anything?     Like this man who intended to rob the convenience store he was seen walking into:

thiefThe video camera caught him entering the store.   He didn’t forget to put a bag over his head.    He just overlooked the fact that it was a transparent bag!

I have the usual pre-trip jitters.   What am I overlooking?





June 13, 2013

The End of the Journey:   5,100 miles.   !7 days.

I was missed:


Spider webs on my mailbox!!

They better not have taken over the house.



May 27, 2012

Lying low this weekend.    I needed a “retreat.”

Wasn’t being lazy, though:

Learned to love  tools this weekend – anything that’s sharp and strong and cuts and pokes and whiffs things away.

My favorite –

Kept me real busy these last couple of days.   Anything that grows on trees was not safe!    Anything that grows…like twigs and  branches and vines and  leaves … and spider webs and nests…

If it was UP – and I could reach it –  it’s now DOWN.    Brush piles of all sizes, every ten feet.

Good news is  —  Hubbie will be proud that our yard is not being overgrown like some scene out of “Life After People.”     I think I added about a quarter of an acre to our property.

Bad news  is —  I forgot to think about what to do with all those brush piles.


Does this come under the Category of “Gardening”?


April 17, 2012

So,  I posted the rather routine “issues” of traveling in the last post.  I suppose this post goes under the category of Summer Silliness.   It certainly is summer down here in the Deep South.     And I certainly have seen some funny signs lately.


Years ago, Daughter and made this trip to Florida together, and this was one sign we just didn’t get right away.     I think we had to read thirty of them before we finally figured it out.   Seems apparent now, but we don’t word it quite that way in the North.


Well, no.    I think I’d like to keep my headlights in good shape, even if I had to use my windshield wipers.


I thought,  oh-oh.    I know what accident recontructionists do.   They make rope boundaries, take measurements,  spray-paint the pavement, etc., etc.     There’s going to be a pretty awful sight up ahead.

And then there was …  nothing.   Just a wide area on the shoulder of  the road,  like a little turn-out.      No accident.   But if you’re going to have one,  I guess that’s the place for it, because the accident recontructionists will know about that place.


I thought,  are they kidding?     The sun down here in the South is Ferocious!!    And blue eyes don’t do so well in the northern sunlight either.

But it’s because I almost missed this sign:

See the sign on the right?     I just LOVE tunnels!

And so that’s why I needed to take my sunglasses off.   I suppose everything would disappear if you wear sunglasses in there.

We all look for good signs too.   Like “light at the end of the tunnel”?Well, there’s the light at the end…..     Now I need my sunglasses again.   Right quick!

I stopped at a lovely Welcome Center in Georgia and was intrigued by a monument to a “kettle.”    At least, that’s what it looked like:

That’s a genuine kitchen kettle there on the top.   And there’s an interesting explanation –  on a sign, of course:

 So,  hats off to Christopher K.  Jones, Eagle Scout.

But really,  Brunswick Isles area of Georgia?  I always thought Brunswick Stew came from Canada, as in New Brunswick.    Still,  the best Brunswick Stew I ever had was in the South.    Barbecue flavored, of course.

Well, I hope you have some patience with my silliness.   I just drove over 700 miles today…it’s hard to gather up any serious thoughts.

But no matter how tired a person is,  it always pays to Read the Signs!!

(actual sign in the bathroom shower)     You wouldn’t want to miss this one when you’re looking forward to a nice, hot shower after a long drive!


September 9, 2011


These hit me in the face this morning…just about before I fully woke up.   I was reaching into the refrigerator for some orange juice, opened the freezer door instead,  and I was confronted with five vertical feet of fluffy sparkling white palm fronds!

(We have a side-by-side;  it’s easy to mistake the doors in the early morning.)

No packages of frozen meat, frozen vegetables, frozen anything.   The entire opening was covered with a layer of these hairy, frosty branches.    It was creepy and beautiful all at once.

And I did wake up.

Slowly an explanation formed in my mind.   It was all frost.    I must have left the freezer door partly open last night, and all night long the big spiky branches of crystalline frost were forming.   As domestic “surprises” go,  this one is a pretty minor one.  No damage to repair, just a little wiping down with a warm cloth.  I wish I had had the presence of mind to take an actual photo first, but at that point I hadn’t quite reached a state of “imperturbability,”   that detached, objective state of mind that I wrote about a few postings ago.

It seems that as soon as you think of a quality that you lack and one that is possible for you to cultivate,   the Good Lord sends you opportunities to practice it.

As this summer winds down, and the Category called “Summer Silliness’  will go unused until next  year,  it’s good to enter the next season by taking stock, taking inventory of where you’ve come from, how you’ve progressed, what you’ve learned.

And I’ll get  to test my new goal of imperturbability  tomorrow – during the Football game.    (heh)


August 31, 2011

I’ve got a GREAT dentist!  

I had to “lie low” for a while, no moving around,  no talking, no eating. . . .

But I think it’s time to come out of my hole.

My mouth actually feels pretty good.

Compared to how I was feeling a day two days three days a week  before this big dentist operation.   Well, I worried about it for a long time.   So glad it’s over.    Just a little more healing to do.

Time to get back into life and hang out with my friends….

And just go do normal stuff. . .


August 4, 2011

When you’re “on the road” for a while, it’s difficult to find enough fruit and vegetables to eat.  Son and I were #1 needing fruit  +  #2 feeling adventurous.

So we shopped the produce department of a grocery store in the Far North and found this –

Looked interesting.   You know,  there’s Star Fruit and Ugly Fruit and…this:  Hedge…   Once we bought it, we forgot what the sign said:     Hedge Ball, Hedge Fruit,  Hedge Apple.    (Hedge Hog Fruit?)

We put it on the table and proceeded to attempt to peel it.  Or slice it.   Or cut it.   Or open it somehow.    Son worked on it for a while.  I had some scissors in my purse and worked on it with that.    Then later Son obtained a thin milky white juice coming out of some of the wounds that we had inflicted.

Of course he tasted it.   He had such a strange look on his face that I dipped my fingertip into some of the juice and tasted it too.

No.   No words to describe the taste.   But the milky substance was very, very sticky.   I poured water over my hands and rubbed.   Now all my fingers were covered with something that felt like Super Glue.   Very sticky.

(A wet washcloth takes it off your tongue.)

So those of you who already know what this is are probably laughing at us.

After we got cleaned up as best we could and had sat and stared that thing down for a while, we turned to the Internet.

Hedge Apple.   Favorite food of the giant tree sloth and mastodons.   A leftover from the Ice Age…..

Now.   Why would they put something like that in the Produce department among the bins of other fruits and vegetables which happen to be:  edible?!



July 29, 2011

Yesterday I wrote to you “from the O of the word Wisconsin” (see yesterday’s map).    Today I was in Wisconsin and then north of the “O”  by about 200 miles.   Far North:

Warnings for moose, warnings for elk;   and deer playing on the highways as though the cars were the intruders.

I visited my cousin who lives at the end of this road:

……..Way, way far away at the end.     I asked her if she can see “lots of stars” at night because it must be so dark out there away from city lights.    She said she barricades herself inside her home when it gets dark.    Counts the bear claw marks in the morning.    Uh-huh.

Lots of critters along that road too.

I do believe people in the Far North have a different relationship with the critters around them:

Travel can be very enlightening.

(Please note gentle humor in  the words I’ve written in this post.)

(Some of the words.)


July 5, 2011

In short,  the “food of July”  is best eaten outdoors . . .

. . . . at night. . . . at poolside . . . .  preferably with beautiful blue underwater lights. . . and under the family fireworks on the Fourth of July weekend.

And also best  when the food is given as a gift to someone else (and their children):

Or best eaten when prepared by good friends:

And sometimes best eaten in the middle of a big picnic crowd:

Anywhere outdoors:

I guess  I’ve been doing some serious summertime eating lately.

Summer food can be so festive.    And how strange that eating outdoors is such a pleasant event.

Grab a picnic tablecloth!

You can do this only in the summer.


June 13, 2011

Remember a few days ago when it was 96 degrees and my air conditioner broke?


Well.     The repairman came today.    I trust him explicitly.   He’s a good friend of Son’s and a professional HVAC man.   He knows what he’s doing.

I know he does good work.

The air conditioner is working now.

And it has to keep on working for the next four hours so that the … capacitor can …. something …. so the fan will have enough …. something … so that it will keep going around when … the thermostat does something.

It’s not 96 degrees anymore.    It’s 60 degrees tonight.   And I need to “dial down” enough so that the air conditioner stays ON for the next FOUR HOURS.

Truly.    The air conditioner is truly fixed now.



June 9, 2011

(…just…see yesterday’s post…..)




June 1, 2011

Home again,  from ground level:

I thought I’d  check how high the grass is today.

I thought I’d prepare the grass for mowing.

I thought….I’d better use a rake, a shovel,  a little axe,  and a wheelbarrow.

Every single square yard….

. . . .filled with sticks.
While I was  enjoying the tornado-tossed wedding reception a couple of days ago,  50 miles northeast where my home is, my trees were also “enjoying” bits and pieces of the thunderstorm-wrapped little tornadoes.       It looks like my trees have had some kind of wild stick party, throwing all sizes of sticks and branches and limbs around and tossing them onto the grass below – which today badly needs mowing.     

I probably haven’t picked the best day for clean-up.  It’s 72,  sunny,  and very windy.   Feels good,  but I don’t seem to be running out of woody debris anytime soon.  

I think the “party” is still going on.      The sticks are still raining down….

. . . Self-Cleaning tree tops.


WHAT’S IT – #15

September 2, 2010

I see I haven’t posted a What’s It for a while.  Here’s one just for fun.

You “solve” it with some simple arithmetic, some higher equations, some knowledge of history (or at least some good timelines),  correlations, patience, and the I Ching.  (I said it was just for fun.)

This chart was  first  devised several decades ago, without the aid of computers.     The author didn’t expect it to “end.”

 Is it still fun  if I tell you the last year at the end of the chart is 2012?

You can look it up, Search term:  Timewave theory.     I’m sure it’s been disproved somewhere.  But if you’d like  to prove or disprove it, you’d need to use some of this:
L(k) =  abs( ((-1)^trunc((k-1) /32))* (h[k-1 Mod64] – h[k-2 Mod64] +h[-k Mod64] – h[1-k Mod64]) 
  + 3*((-1)^trunc((k-3) /96))* (h[trunc(k/3) -1 Mod64] – h[trunc(k/3) -2 Mod64] + h[-trunc(k/3) Mod64] – h[1-trunc(k/3) Mod64]) 
  + 6*((-1)^trunc((k-6) /192))* (h[trunc(k/6) -1 Mod64] – h[trunc(k/6) -2 Mod64] + h[-trunc(k/6) Mod64] – h[1-trunc(k/6) Mod64])  ) 
 + abs( 9-h[-k Mod64] – h[k-1 Mod64] + 3*(9-h[-trunc(k/3) Mod64] – h[trunc(k/3) -1 Mod64]) + 6*(9- h[-trunc(k/6) Mod64] – h[trunc(k/6) -1 Mod64] ) ) . . .


August 26, 2010

Much obliged, Hubbie.   I discovered your Good Deed today.

If “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach…”

Then the way to this feminine heart is through her Little Red Car….all clean and shiny!

The apple pie’s for you.  

The pecan pie is an afterthought –  can’t throw good pie crust away just because there was too much made.

Now we can both enjoy your Good Deed.

It’s what married love is all about;   apple pies and clean Red Cars!


August 26, 2010

 I know some “favored regions of the country”  are graced with beautiful birds like flamingos.    Well, we have turkeys.The Little Red Car and I were driving through our country roads to get to the city, when I noticed these guys.   Apparently it’s not only our yard they like to strut in.

And apparently they didn’t mind when I stopped the car for a closer look:

Eventually, they just strolled on down the driveway:  

So I think I know where all the turkeys are coming from.   I think I know where they live:

Going home…..

Lest we forget:   Benjamin Franklin is said to have wanted the Turkey to be our national bird.       They were quite important to our forefathers.    And delicious.

This has been an odd week, with two “themes,”  turkeys and kings.     I guess there are turkeys and kings and turkeys who are king-of-the-roads and kings who are turkeys,  and one of those is for the next posting:  King Jeroboam II –  the Bible gives him short shrift and not much space.  History books call him “great” and give him a whole chapter of his own.     But  I think I know who the real turkeys are…..


August 20, 2010

Don’t ask me “Mary, Mary, quite contrary, how does your garden grow?”

My name’s not Mary.

And apparently I’m not a gardener.

Potatoes:    The potato plants grew tall and lush for two weeks.   Then, when we came back from our Road Trip,  they had laid themselves flat down on the ground.   Oh, they’re still green and “growing,”  but they’re now about two inches tall.     And they are pinning down the nearby tomato plants, which are now also horizontal. 

Pepper plants.     Can’t find them.   Or can’t identify them anymore.

Tomatoes in the two other garden areas:     Growing…growing tiny little green marbles.  I don’t think they’re going to be edible.    Frequently watering doesn’t make them any bigger.

The little yellow apples on the apple tree…..have all disappeared.    They’re not even lying on the ground, under the tree.

Raspberries:  I think we had….twelve.

BUT WE HAD A BUMPER CROP!     According to several neighbors:

(In my rhubarab patch):

(In one of the garden areas):

And everywhere you look:

According to all our neighbors who have come over at various times, they have identified these enthusiastic leaves as Poison Ivy.  

So……just so you know….because Hubbie and I sure didn’t know.