An Apple a Day…

It’s time for another round of ABC Wednesday! Thank you to Mrs. Nesbitt for starting it up and for a wonderful team of people keeping it going!

A is for my apple tree and the apples that I have no inspiration to do anything with at present.

So time will tell if an apple crisp or an apple tart or an apple pie or applesauce is in our future! What would you make with my apples?

Friday’s Fave Five ~ Walks-Relationships-Food

My favorites can always be narrowed down to these three…a nice long walk, peaceful relationships, and good food. A fulfilling walk is one shared with someone who I have a good relationship with or am building a relationship with. Food, sitting around a table, is always better if it’s shared with someone. My past week has been rich with walks, relationships, and good food.

Visit our kind hostess Susanne at Living to Tell the Story to join in with your favorites from this past week…


1. Early Saturday morning Dear and I walked at Emma Wood State Beach and enjoyed the cool crisp air. We usually will stop at our favorite breakfast spot in Ventura after these walks. Allison’s has the best hot out of the oven baked biscuits and fresh raspberry jam. Oh they serve eggs and stuff, too.


2. Saturday evening we met my brother Steve and his wife Kelly at Tam O’ Shanter in Glendale for a birthday dinner. Kelly is celebrating a milestone birthday and we wanted to treat her at our favorite spot for prime rib. The chocolate souffle and C.C. Brown’s hot fudge were pretty good, too. Oh, right about now you are probably wondering how my healthy weight loss program is going, aren’t ya? Well with these habits of mine it’s going slow but I am losing instead of gaining. So far I’ve lost 4 pounds.


3. For Willow and my walk this week we met up at Joy’s Blueberry ranch and then walked through a neighboring ranch or two. Instead of going past rows of blueberries we walked through an avocado grove and past rows and rows of raspberries. Joy told us we could pick some raspberries even though it wasn’t her property. Those ranchers are all like family :0) I still felt guilty for picking and eating…


Here’s the great variety of growing goodness we’ve spotted on our ranch walks…

4. On Tuesday afternoon I drove across town to my parent’s apartment for a meal with four of my nieces, my three sisters, one of my SIL’s, two nephews, my grand nephew and grand niece. Would you believe I didn’t take one photo? It gets a little crazy when we all cram into that little apartment for a meal. It was good to see everyone and to get caught up a little. I was happy to get to spend some time with my folks before I head North for the rest of the year.

5. On Wednesday I decided to go to a regular kind of store instead of a thrift store and I was able to buy 4 shirts and 2 pairs of pants for Dear and 2 tops for myself for $150 with $30.00 cash coupon back to spend next week. I was pleased with the experience and now I won’t have to go back to a regular store for a long time. We aren’t your fashionista/fashionisto.

Bonus!! My #6 is a looking forward to…


spending lots of time with these peeps and my kids over Thanksgiving!!

Blessings everyone! Looking forward to seeing your favorites…

Photobucket is holding all my photos that I stored on their site from 2007-2015 hostage replacing them with ugly grey and black boxes and asking for a large ransom to retrieve them. It is a slow process to go through all my posts deleting the ugly boxes.

Fruit Pizza


I found this simple recipe for Fruit Pizza on Bernideen’s Tea Blog and decided to make it for a get-together we were invited to. I’ll give you the original recipe and also give you some options that I decided to try.


The mix, the sticky dough in the pan, the baked dough and the cool whip with pudding mixed in…


1 pkg. Yellow Cake Mix
1/4 Cup Water
2 eggs
1/4 Cup butter
1/4 Cup brown sugar
1/2 Cup chopped nuts
I large carton of Cool Whip
Assorted Fruit pieces

Mix together cake mix, water, eggs, butter, sugar and nuts until stiff. I think because my cake mix was a variety with pudding in it the dough was sticky and not real stiff but it was still spreadable. Spread into a buttered and floured pan. You can use 2 round pans or I used a large rectangular pan. I also sprayed the pan with the baking spray with flour in it. (lazy) Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes but watch carefully because it might bake faster and you want it to be golden brown not dark brown :0)

Cool completely and then spread with coolwhip and cover with fruit of your choice. I used blueberries, blackberries, and peaches that were frozen and peaches that were fresh.


Instead of using straight cool whip I mixed the cool whip with a box of instant vanilla pudding to make it stiffer. Next time I think I’ll first make the pudding according to the package instructions and fold it into the cool whip or whip cream and see how that works…


You can make this look a lot prettier and arrange the fruit more creatively. Enjoy the possibilities…


Thanks Bernideen for this fun, easy recipe!

I auto posted this for Saturday morning because Dear and I got up bright and early to hit the road from Seattle to Camarillo today. I’ll be brain dead for at least a couple days after we arrive late Saturday night. Hope you all have wonderful summer weekend!

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage on their site and have replaced my photos with black and grey boxes of ugliness. I’m slowly deleting those boxes from my blog and trying to update so many posts, very frustrating.


ABC Wednesday ~ U is for

U is for Underwood Family Farms, U-pick Blueberries, Uitility Poles, and the U.S. Post Office

I sure wish there was someone with me when I was taking this shot so I could have a face to go with one of these animals.

The Underwood Farms sell fresh fruit, produce and flowers at this roadside stand. They are also known for their U-pick Blueberries.


While at the Underwood Stand I looked down the road and noticed all these Utility Poles.

On the way home I passed this U.S. Post Office. All they seem to want to send me these days is lots of USELESS mail and very few meaningful pieces of mail.

For more ABC’s head over to Mrs. Nesbitt.

Photobucket is holding all my photos I stored with them from 2007-2015 hostage. They have blacked out all those photos on my blog posts. OH BOTHER! I’m slowly cleaning up my posts.

Cherry Varenya ~ Russian Tea Sweetener

The Russian immigrants I grew up around would make and enjoy this Cherry Syrup made with whole pie cherries in their hot tea. They used this syrup in place of sugar to sweeten their tea. I called my mother this week to get the following recipe from her to share for The-Sweet-and-Savory-of-Yummy.

This is a very simple recipe for Cherry Varenya. This is a syrup made with Cherries to sweeten hot tea with.

Cherry Varenya

1/2 Cup Water
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Whole Sour Cherries (Pie Cherries)
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice

You would increase the proportions of this recipe according to how many cherries you have on hand that you want to make into Varenya.

Boil the water and sugar to make a clear simple syrup. When the liquid is clear add your cherries and let it boil for 10 to 20 minutes (depending on how hard the cherries were to begin with) At the end of the boiling add 1 Tablespoon of fresh lemon juice to help preserve the brightness of the syrup.

You may want to can it at this point. (I don’t know how to can anything so you are on your own here!) 🙂

You can do this process with sliced lemons, too, to make a Lemon Varenya.

Lemon Varenya

When I was young our family would go to a Cherry Orchard somewhere near Lancaster, California in July when the pie cherries were ready to harvest. It might have been in the Leona Valley. We would pick cherries all day and take home upwards of 40 pounds of cherries. That’s a lot of Varenya. When we picked this much my parents would give about half of the cherries away to other relatives and friends who couldn’t make the trek out to the Cherry Farm. Then it was a full day of preparing the cherries for Varenya. Washing, cooking and canning.