Monday, April 04, 2011

First, An Apology! April 4, 2011

I am so sorry, my dear followers and friends for being remiss in replying to
comments and keeping up to date on your wonderful blogs.  I've been trying to be a
little better at following doctor's orders not to sit more than five hours a day at the
computer, in hopes of reducing my chronic edema to my feet and ankles.  I try
to lie in bed and use my laptop but I find it so difficult to focus that way and,
inevitably, I am back at my desk after about thirty minutes in a recumbent position.

Also, I took some time ( three wonderful days ) to go up to West Sacramento for a
visit with my middle son, Alex, his lovely wife, Laura, and my two granddogs. I
hadn't seen them since Christmas and. with their bizarre work schedules, it's almost 
impossible for them to get down here.  Laura is a paramedic who puts in sixty hours
a week and Alex, in addition to going to school, works about 30 hours on a 4AM to
noon shift in the dairy department at a Safeway, twenty miles from his home.

Wednesday evenng, while Alex was at class, Laura and I met her mom, Christine,
at Sacramento's, Taco the Town, for drinks and appetizers.  We had such fun,
feasting on fried foods.   The owner of the restaurant also owns the Middle Eastern
spot next door and you can order from both menus so we selected two dishes from
each.  Christine and I tried really good dark rum drinks made with muddled lemons
and oranges and sugar which I duplicated the next day at their house.  I added limes
and blood oranges to the mix and used Mt. Gay rum and thought mine were even

My daughter-in-law, Laura, with her mother, Christine ( who is also an R.N. )

The three of us with our drinks - Laura is having a mojito - you can see my
scar, on the side of my nose, from the skin cancer surgery.  It's been
two weeks since I had it removed.

Here's Laura, lounging with Taffy, my first granddog, who is a real
snuggler and slept with me while I was there. 

I can't believe Alex even got me out two days, for a walk in his neighborhood with 
the dogs.  First of all, it was HOT!  The temperature was up to eighty degrees ( 26 C ).
I really felt sad with the news that the northeast was suffering from yet another snow 
storm - especially since the fruit trees in my son's neighborhood were in full bloom as
were many Spring flowers.  Several weeks of rain had left the Sacramento River at
almost flood stage.  The Yolo Causeway, crossing into Sacramento, which is usually
planted with rice part of the year, looked like a huge lake, with trees showing only the
tips of branches above water, no trunks at all visible!

 A long stretch of Jefferson was blooming with these!

We passed these our neighborhood walk.

This is the closest thing to snow I saw during my visit although Laura went
skiing at Lake Tahoe, in the Sierras, on Thursday, two hours north of

Shrubs we passed.  The rosemary was so beautiful.  I took a few
sprigs to use for cooking the next day!

This house is a few blocks from Alex and Laura.  They live in a
new subdivision, close to the Sacramento River, not too far from
the state capitol.

Alex and Laura's first home.  They moved in a year before their
wedding and immediately went to Yolo County shelter to get their
first dog, Taffy.  Two months later, they went back for Bucky.

Another home in this West Sacramento neighborhood.  In this recession,
houses here have become much more reasonable, listing for about
$200,000 for a one story house, less than ten-years-old, averaging
1700 square feet.

As you can tell, Alex does not especially enjoy being
photographed!  Here the dogs wait patiently to be
taken out for a walk. 

Of all my sons, I have seen Alex the least.  He moved away after high school,
initially to attend UC Davis, eighty miles away, and he's not been back since except
for brief visits.  Davis and the Sacramento area have been his home ever since.  I
really should go up more often since, when I do, I realize how much I really do miss
him!  It's almost exactly a hundred miles from my door to his and, at sixty-six, I know
I don't have that many more years left where I will be able to easily drive back and
forth.  I've made a resolution to go up at least every other month!  He's the only one,
thus far, who has married - and what a great choice he made in his terrific wife, Laura.
I so enjoy her and her entire family.  Now, if only Shawn ( I think I might as well give
up on him ) and Jeremy would find an equally lovely woman to share their life, I
could rest easy ( easier )!

I'll catch up on everyone's blogs this week and work on responding to all your much
appreciated comments!  


  1. Dear Carmen,
    never apologize for not being able to visit your favorite blogs as frequently as you would like: we all only have a limited amount of time to spend online, isn't it so? I just hope that it is not for health reasons that you cannot do what you'd like to. Best wishes for that!
    Most of the days, I manage to spare the time to put a post up (with midterm exams, etc., I repost a lot), but visiting my blog friends and taking the time to comment is on most days beyond reach.

    So good to read that you are feeling happy about your son's little family.
    All the best to you,

  2. Oh, don't worry about not visiting blogs (although I appreciate how often you come to visit me and I love your comments). Blogs will wait though until you are better and being up and around is much better than sitting at a computer desk.

    What fun you had and what great photos. Wow, I guess the price of houses is more reasonable. What about the property taxes? Are they still terrible?

    Anyway, enjoyed sharing your visit with you and your photos are just the best.

  3. Wonderful family pix and times. I like seeing this kind of post. Glad that you got outside, but 80 degrees in March? Ugh!

  4. I endorse your resolution, of visiting your son/daughter-in-law every other month. I am older (72) and bit farther (India) from my folk in San Ramon CA. And my wife and I try to make it there once in 12 to 18 months.

  5. Hi Carmen
    It looks like you had a wonderful time visiting with your son and daughter-in-law! They make a lovely couple. I'm sure your other two sons will find their special matches one day -- as I remember they are also very handsome.
    I know 100 miles in California is hardly that far and I hope you do get a chance to visit your son and DIl at their lovely home again soon!

  6. Hi Carmen, So glad you got to spend time with Alex and Laura! It sounds like a terrific getaway. I'm happy for you.
    Don't worry about blogging-- Just follow doctor's orders.
    Cheers, jj

  7. Merisi -
    I know that most folks understand time constraints but I feel deprived when I can't visit my favorite blog. They are my connection to the world these days since I've had to retire and, consequently, can no longer travel!

    Mountain Woman -
    San Francisco prices and property taxes are still so outrageous but, if one is willing to relocate out of this area, it's much more reasonable. Of course, I hate the thought of leaving the Bay area. I love all there is to do and the being near the ocean is so important to me...but, financially, it is just so difficult, I am having to give strong consideration to moving elsewhere.

    Sharkbytes (TM) -
    Temperature variations are so great around can cross the bridges and it will be ten to twenty degrees higher or lower than in the San Francisco areas.

    It was nice seeing Alex and Laura, though. I really should go up more often.

    GVK -
    That long journey from India to California is so exhausting...24 hours, isn't it? I've only done it once but, going over, I stopped off overnight in Bangkok, which was nice and, on the return I cruised from Bangkok to Singapore so, again, I didn't have to make the trip all at once. Goodness, if you come to San Ramon again, perhaps I can drive over and say hello.
    I am trying to use my remaining frequent flyer miles for a three month visit to India!

    Joanna Jenkins -
    It was fun visiting with the only other girl in the family! It's hard to believe their first wedding anniversary is just a month away. Alex did a great job in his choice of Laura for a wife!

    Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti -
    Shawn, my oldest, is 40 and says he'll never marry and he doesn't want children - he raised his two brothers - and I doubt I could have managed so well if he hadn't been around. He does have a lovely girlfriend, though.

    Jeremy is 27 now and just moved into a posh downtown San Francisco apartment with a friend
    ( male ) who he has known since 3rd grade. They seem to be entertaining a bevy of young ladies but Jeremy says he isn't even thinking about marriage unil he's at least 30!

  8. Why do bloggers feel compelled for taking time to do other things? It's good for you to be living your life.

  9. Carmen, I'm just glad that you get to enjoy family time with your son, and follow your doctor's order.

    You took great pictures to show us though after a well-deserved break..

  10. I enjoyed my visit to your blog--the poetry and the pictures of your family were very intriguing. I liked your pictures of some of the houses and your info on the housing situation there in California. I have only visited California once long ago--Huntington Beach and San Francisco. I loved it. Don't leave it if you can help it.