Lois Reynolds Mead

Art and a pink monkeyflower in a native plant garden…


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No rest for the weary in Seattle…

Bright and early (well not so bright, afterall it was Seattle) Terry’s brother, Pat, picked us up for our day of sightseeing in Seattle.

A swing through the University of Washington and then down to the Olympic Sculpture Park.

I will only give you a teaser here and dedicate an entire post later to the sculptures. This is Eagle by Alexander Calder. A perfect setting for this soaring piece.

Pat and Terry waited for me to take pictures most of the day They were very patient!

Our next stop was the Pioneer Square section of Seattle where we walked around the historic buildings and found the tasting room for Dry Soda. This is my favorite new drink, but I haven’t found it in California yet. It has flavors like lemongrass, rhubarb, blood orange, cucumber and vanilla bean. Less sweet soda and delicious. They have a tasting room in Seattle, just like in a winery.

At street level is the original second floor of the building because Seattle was rebuilt at a higher level after a fire in 1889 destroyed blocks of the city. Wooden buildings were rebuilt in brick. This created an “underground” portion to the buildings.

Some of the trees and light posts in Pioneer Park had knitted coverings. It made me giggle and think of my “knitting friends” back home.

Really? Still?

And over to:

Pike’s Place Market! The pictures say it all…

This was a very crowded place and I thought if I stopped for pictures of the flowers I would get trampled, so I waited until lunch at Campagne Cafe where it was a little quieter.

Then off to the Washington Park Arboretum (while driving there Pat pointed out this building which is the new library in Seattle.) The building is made of glass and steel and when I make it back to Seattle I will be sure that I see what it is like to look from the inside out instead of only from the backseat of a car through the lens of my iPhone. The iPhone proved again how quickly it can respond to important sights.

The garden has this type of planter (iron with terra cotta). Great design, wish I had some, although the design is a tad formal and massive for my garden. But, a great design idea. Around now we were beginning to realize that for everything we did that day we could have used an entire day’s worth of time to explore. We walked through only a portion of the garden and left wanting more. The plants weren’t labeled so some of the identifications are guesses.

This golden maple was magnificent:

and a honeysuckle

and another lovely flower with freckles and back-light.

Tree trunks in amazing shapes

Then a rollicking evening with Lisa, Pat, Ben, and Jeff at the Italian restaurant Il Terrazzo Carmine. Fantastico!

We will be back! Thanks for the memories! (and pictures)


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August/Sunday…

First to the local Farmer’s Market where there was a new vendor with a really good eye for display.  I, of course, had to compliment him, plug the value of art education to every career, and take a picture!

Then I decided to play with Photoshop Elements since I had not in such a long time.

I combined two views from a recent Morro Bay trip. The tree and the smoke stacks are in close proxcimity, but they do not in reality line up in this fashion. However, I liked the egrets and the green heron in the way they are perching, so they became one with some texture and tinting….The tree is turning into an apartment building for sea birds.


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Have you clafoutied lately?

Recently the content of my kitchen cupboards has been a topic of conversation, what with bundt pans and green glass orange juicers—my cabinets even contain a fondue pot. Today a discussion of another gadget that gets resurrected annually when the farmer’s market gets its cherries. I bought this close to thirty years ago when Joanna was in a baby backpack and we would go to the u-pick cherry orchards near Redlands. I googled it on ebay yesterday and found it is now called “vintage.” Weird how things purchased early in married life are now considered vintage….

This is the two-fisted Westmark Kernomat Doppelentkerner:

With its original box and German, French, Spanish and English description.

Cherries in the shute, two at a time positioned in the guillotine, a plunge that shoots two pits to the side containers and then raises the two now pitted cherries. They slide down the ramps into  a waiting receptacle. Beauty and ease (but cherry juice is hard to get out of the front of your shirt, so wear an apron!) That pile of cherries is pitted in no time and you are set for a clafouti. The definition from Wikipedia. I really can’t imagine making this in the traditional way with all the pits in the cherries. What happens if you hand a dessert to people and they break their teeth? So I will not be going traditional on this one, besides I like an excuse to use my Kernomat.  I plan for a few more weeks of clafouti bliss, long may the cherries last in the market…

When it comes out of the oven it is a puffy, golden brown delight. As it cools it sinks and becomes its comforting self. Then it is cut in wedges and served lukewarm.

right out of the oven

ready to eat

The recipe I use is from Susan Herrmann Loomis’ “Cooking at Home On Rue Tatin”:

Oven preheated to 450°, butter and lightly flour baking dish. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of brown sugar.

Sift together 3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour and 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt. Whisk in 1 cup milk to make smooth batter, then add 3 eggs, one at a time. Whisk in 1/4 cup sugar and 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract. Whisk in 1 more cup milk.

Place cherries in the pan and pour the batter over them. Dot with 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in 6 pieces. Bake until golden and puffed, about 25 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon light brown sugar immediately. Cool to lukewarm.

Terry thinks he got the prize this time because he found the one missed pit in the pan. Didn’t break a tooth, though. That is a pretty good ratio for a pound of sweet, flavorful cherries! Only one missed pit…