Thursday Thoughts

Alfredo the Dark
My sister Bec took Bill and me for lunch at our favorite pizza restaurant here in the east valley – Oregano’s. We nearly always order a pizza, but this time Bec and I were in the mood for something besides pizza – namely pasta. So Bill was on his own, and I ordered something they call Alfredo the Dark. It’s basically an alfredo with a bit of a Mexican flare. Poblanos, pasta, and a light cream sauce, with a grilled jalapeno on the side. Man, it was so good. I ordered it with a side of Italian sausage, but I wouldn’t do it again. Despite the fact that it was the lunch version, it was a lot of food. I seem to be doing restaurant reviews as of late. Hmmmm…….

Where are the Wet Wipes?
I’m not the only one who enjoyed my food yesterday. My nephew Erik and his family went out for hot wings last night. My great nephew Carter does love him some wings. Perhaps he shouldn’t eat them if he’s wearing white…….

Messy pastries
Among my very favorite pastry treats are crispies. Or krispies. However you spell it, they are delicious. My dad used to make them at the bakery, and if we were good, Mom would bring some home to eat on a Saturday or Sunday morning. Crispies are flat puff pastry, cinnamon, and big pieces of sugar. At the bakery, they came six to a pack. We wrapped them in stiff cellophane that was sealed by using a heavy and very hot iron that looked something like this…..

Anyhoo, Basha’s makes crispies, and quite good crispies. My brother knows how much I love them, so he will occasionally bring me a package that he has made because he makes the very best crispies – no lie. He sent me a text message the other day with a photo of a crispie attached. His message said If there was a beauty contest for crispies, I introduce the winner……


I had to agree with him. I asked him if he’d made it, and he admitted he had.  And 73 more just like it, he added.

Dumpster Diving
I get a weekly digital newsletter from PERA (my retirement plan), and it’s usually a bit bland, but might have an interesting story or two. But the one I got Tuesday had an item that took me by surprise. The article was about inexpensive things to do for fun in Colorado this summer. Cheap seats at a Rockies game, for example. But one of their ideas seemed a bit odd. They recommend dumpster diving in Cherry Hills, a high-end village in the southern part of the metro area. Grab a few friends and hunt down their dumpsters – we bet you there is GOLD inside. Seriously? They are suggesting we dig through trash dumpsters in someone’s back yards? Sometimes I think I’m just getting old. But that seems intrusive, if not illegal. Really PERA? Seriously, tell me if that lands on you as odd as it did on me.

Homeward Bound

We leave Monday for Denver. Among the many things I’ll miss about AZ are evening skies that look like this…..


Thursday Thoughts

Early Birds
Our gang visiting from Denver left early yesterday morning, and when I say early, I mean EARLY. Their flight took off at 5:30 a.m. They spent the night before in a hotel near the airport, and had the alarm set early enough to catch a 4 o’clock shuttle. They landed safely. The plan, then, was that Dave would catch a different plane to take him to Las Vegas for a (cough) work meeting. The four kids would run home and change clothes and grab lunches and backpacks and go to school. What’s more, Addie has one of the leading roles in her school musical playing last night. I wasn’t a bit concerned that she would be too tired to remember her lines, because I’m confident she will not only remember HER lines, but will also remember EVERYONE ELSE’S lines. I was mostly concerned that her singing voice would be croaky from exhaustion. As of the time I wrote this post, I haven’t heard how she did.

I Can’t Make Up My Mind
One of the places we took our family to eat is Oregano’s, because it’s one of our favorite restaurants.  We had a wonderful time and enjoyed the pizza and other Italian goodies very much. The food server did her duty, and told us about the dessert offerings, which are a variety of what they used to call pazookies, but for some sort of trademark reason, had to change the name to pizza cookies. These are partially unbaked cookies, served warm with ice cream. I began playing a game with Addie, and wasn’t paying attention, and when I looked up, this happened……


Dagny loves all animals, but especially is intrigued and drawn to insects. From the time she was a little girl, she has said she wanted to be an entymologist. She will literally pick up an insect that’s made its way into the house and carry it carefully in her cupped hand to the outdoors and to safety. She was horrified last summer to see me step forcefully on a wasp that had landed on our patio. A wasp. But apparently no one told the bee about Dagny’s love of insects, because at the baseball game on Tuesday, Dagny went to pull her hair back from her face and got in the way of a bee that was flying near her face. The bee stung her, and Dagny’s heart was broken. It hurt, darn it. The nerve……


Bill and I started out our Ash Wednesday (and the entire season of Lent) by attending Mass, which included the distribution of ashes. Catholics love Ash Wednesday. Oh, I don’t know if they particularly like the part about not eating meat and fasting, but they love getting those ashes. So the church was crowded. Afterwards, Bill and I were heading straight to Chandler to visit my sister-in-law who is in the hospital following an accident at work, and had the whole should-we-leave-them-on-or-take-them-off discussion regarding the ashes. Bill is in the remove-the-ashes camp, as the Ash Wednesday gospel clearly tells us not to be like the hypocrites and to pray and fast and do penance quietly. I, on the other hand, always keep my ashes on because, well, the nuns told us to. We landed on the remove-the-ashes side, however, as we didn’t think everyone in the hospital needed to be staring at us. After our visit, we went for lunch where I forgot it was a day of fasting from meat and ordered a meat-laden salad. My penance for yesterday was picking meat out of an antipasto salad.