“To photograph is to hold one’s breath, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.”
~Henri Cartier-Bresson



Saturday, March 13, 2010

Sister Visit


Sis came up for the weekend so I will make this a short post. She didn't come up to see The Prospector and I. She says she came to see us, but we all know what she really came up here to see. So, we will let her pretend she is here to visit us when we know her true intent. She is getting her "Corgi pup" fix and, if I can drag her away from all the puppy love around here, we have plans to do some antique shopping this afternoon.

Why the Bread Pudding? If you have been reading my blog for very long you know it's all about the bread pudding with the two of us.

Do you think the pups are happy? Do you think Carl is adapting? Is this the sweetest photo of them or what?
Posted by Picasa

Friday, March 12, 2010

Oh I Do Love To Bake


Yesterday was our Gourd club meeting. I love to bake something for the meetings when there's a reason, any reason at all. Let's bake a cake for your birthday. Let's bake cookies for someone who has won an award. Let's make pie for no reason at all...
I decided to make cupcakes. I couldn't find my other regular cupcake pan so I did some small ones. This worked out great because some folks like "just a bite" and some want a full portion. This gave everyone choices they could live with.
This was a white (cake mix) cupcake with a buttercreme frosting. Very simple and tasty. The white frosting turned pale yellow with the (what else would I add) orange zest in it. The flecks of orange peel added to the "homemade" look and tasted wonderful.

I had some batter left over so I pulled out a pan that I hadn't use yet. I bought two of them at Ross or T.J.Maxx a while back and they were very inexpensive. They are called Petite Muffin Pans. The heart shape is so cute and my only advice is to not fill them very full. The directions say: Fill each cup 1/2 to 2/3 full. DO NOT OVER FILL. This is really true. I would only fill them 1/2 full. The heart shape bakes nicer if the pan is not too full.

These are the "Petite Muffins" with just a sprinkling of powdered sugar. I kept these just for us. Wait... There are only 9 muffins on this plate. What happen to the other 3. I know I baked 12 of these little guys. Who ate the mini muffins?..."WHERE IS EVERYBODY?" The Prospector was no where to be seen. The dogs were not talking.
"Well, I guess I will take that one in the middle, on the right.", I thought to myself., "It looks a little out of shape. Too much batter in the pan. I'll taste test just one. The rest will be for after dinner.
As I popped it in my mouth Carl barked at me. Who does he think he is..., the kitchen watch dog.
Posted by Picasa

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Cutter; our New Pembroke Welsh Corgi


His eyes are brown and he has more dark color on his face than Carl does. He's 5 months old. He's been to Oregon and back. He is cautious and smart; two Corgi traits. But this little guy is a lover and when he gets in your lap he wants to hunker down and put his head under your arm..., or he leans back and puts his head up and licks your face. He is just a sweet little dog.

When we got Cutter home, he and Carl played on the lawn and ran around the yard together. They wrestled and growled and stared each other down and then wrestled some more. Cutter is going to be so good for Carl. When Carl wanted to play with Maggie she couldn't do it. Now he has met his match. They play hard and then they rest...

...and then they go at it again. All the posturing.verbal exchanges, snorting and heavy breathing starts every time one of them looks at the other. It's hysterical!!
By today they seem to have come to some agreement. They sit together and watch the activities around them, pretending to be fierce watchdogs. I shouldn't say "pretending". That will hurt their feelings. They really are good watch dogs, as long as an intruder doesn't see them first. They can look really mean (upper right photo) in their own Corgi way, but they are the proverbial "bark is worse than their bite" dogs.
Carl is being very good about all of this. He has become the "uncle" and I think he rather likes the title.., until, of course, Cutter takes the BIG WHITE BONE and starts chewing on it. I can see the dilemma in Carl's eyes. Should he let this new friend play with and chew on his favorite bone or attempt to take it away? Some things are sacred. Some things shouldn't be shared. I'm sure that they will work this out. In the meantime we have given Cutter some other toys to play with. He seems to be OK with just about anything.

It's livelier around here. Two young pups keep us hopping and when summer comes it's all about the Rattlesnakes again and we will have to confine the dogs and restrict their movement around the property but, for now, it's OK. We love these little guys and we know we made the right decision to bring Cutter home. Carl is not sure.., yet but I'm sure he'll be fine. He just needs a little time.
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Providence


Yesterday we took a drive down to a valley farm. The Rees Ranch was having babies. They called us and invited us to come down and see all the new colts that were born recently. That baby on the bottom right was born the night before last. Horses are so beautiful! I'm always overwhelmed at how majestic and lovely they are.
We took Carl with us because this is were we got him when he was a pup and we thought it would be nice if he saw all his brothers and sisters again. He had a great time.

If you are not a Corgi owner it's hard to see the subtle differences in a group of corgis that are related. Carl is, of course, the one with the leash. His grandmother was there; sitting between the Prospector's legs. She was such a sweetie. Old and quiet. She just wanted to have her head rubbed.
When we pulled up the Corgi dogs came from everywhere. It was so cute to watch them run to greet us. We had not been back to see the Rees Farm since we picked up Carl last Spring. All his brothers and sisters were there. His Mom.., the beautiful blond in the bottom right photo acted like he was just another dog in the pack. They were all very friendly.
Mr. E gave us a tour of the farm and told us about the interesting process of artificial insemination. They use this now exclusively. It's the difference between 4 or 5 babies and possibly 15 or more in one breeding season. When your business is horses this is a boon to breeding.
We had a great time and when we left....

"It's OK Carl. He's suppose to be in here. His name is Cutter. He's your nephew and he's going to come and live with us."

Yes, Carl is alone no more and we have a rescue puppy. He came from a broken home in Oregon. He and his dad were brought down here a few weeks ago by the Rees because the family who bought Cutter's dad could not keep him or any of the puppies that they were breeding. We not only came back to the ranch to see the colts but we came to see Cutter too. We just didn't tell Carl that we were coming to see more than horses...

Tomorrow I will give you the details about Cutter and LOTS of photos.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Photos that go with the post below...



Posted by Picasa

City of Angels? Well..,maybe frogs.


Saturday after lunch The Prospector wanted to go across the county line and scout out a stream that he thought might be a good place to use his high banker because this time of the year it has WATER in it and makes it easier to work the sides of the gravel bars along the creek.So at 1:00 p.m. we took off for Calavaras County and the beautiful country south of us. We don't usually leave on day trips this late in the day but it wasn't very far and the weather was perfect for "just a drive".
When we go anywhere near the towns in Calavaras Co., like Mokelumne Hill, San Andreas or Angels Camp, I start seeing new territory for antiquing. I certainly don't need to buy anything else for my home but THAT'S NOT THE POINT. It's a new horizon..., a new venue for "looking" . So part of the deal was that we would go scout creeks for a while and then we would drive into Angels Camp and I could look at a few antique stores while The Prospector took Carl for a walk in the town park. Of course, I happen to have my camera with me. The photo above is Main Street in Angels Camp. Its buildings are so beautiful that they just scream "photo shoot".
This is a collage of the "FROG" mania in this town. Every year they have a celebration. They have a jumping frog contest to see which frog can jump the farthest. It one of the biggest celebrations of FROGS anywhere in the world.., I'm guessing. They have lined the streets with plaques for each of the winners with the year, name of the winners and where they came from, plus the frogs names( some of which are really funny). I also found this chalk drawing of a frog on the sidewalk. Very cute. It's a "frog" obsessed city.

The town is known for this celebration and thousands of folks come here, every year, to join in the festivities. You must get reservations during this gathering because the population explodes and you will not find a place to sleep unless you have a good sleeping bag and tent handy..., or, like a blogging friend of mine, relatives, or friends, that live nearby. It's a beautiful town. Only about an hour from Stockton and probably 2 1/2 to 3 hrs east of San Francisco.

Not only is it a charming gold rush town that's proud of its past but it also has all the modern conveniences. If I can find a clean bathroom and a latte I'm a happy camper.

History
Henry and George Angel were soldiers serving under John C Fremont during the Mexican-American War. When the California Gold Rush started, they tried their hand at prospecting, but decided they didn't like the labor involved, so they set up a trading post, which became a camp, and eventually a town. The placer around their camp were very productive but gave out after a few years and the population began to dwindle until Gold-bearing quartz veins were discovered in the town, which brought people back. Those mines operated for the next few decades, producing over $20 million worth of gold, processed by stamp mills in town. It was said that when the last mill finally ceased operations, the townspeople couldn't sleep, the silence was so loud. The first post office was established in 1851 (and called Carson's Creek). It was renamed along with the town in 1853. The city was incorporated under the name of "Angels" in 1912.
(information is from Wikipedia)

In 1928 Angels Camp paved the main street. To celebrate the occasion they held a frog jump competition. This frog jump competition was modeled after the frog jump in the famous short story, "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County", written by Mark Twain. He spent a great deal of time in Angels Camp and first heard the jumping frog story at the Angels Hotel that still stands today. The event became known as the Jumping Frog Jubilee.

Everyone is telling me that they can't see the photos that I posted with this story on Angels Camp. I'm so sorry. I don't know what's wrong. I was seeing photos and now I'm not. I have worked on this all day. If anyone knows what is wrong with Picassa and is having the same problem please let me know. Thanks.