V is for Vera…

Vera is one of my older sisters. She was recently widowed and has moved into a 55 and over community not far from her old home. While I was visiting she had an open house to share her new home with friends and family.


Her manufactured home is open concept with 9 foot ceilings that give it a spacious feeling.

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There are 3 bedrooms which include a large master suite with a walk in closet and large bathroom with a separate tub and shower. My younger sister Lana lives with Vera part-time when she is in Southern California working. Lana got to decorate her own room. Since Lana was in Washington while I was in California I got to crash in her room. My brother Leonard from Texas was also staying with Vera and he got the bedroom/office and the blow up mattress.

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It was good to see some of our cousins and old friends during the open house. Vera used an old email list for her invites so if she missed you she apologizes.

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It was a nice day and we set up tables and chairs in the carport. I did not get photos of everyone, oops.

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On Sunday Leonard, Vera, and I met some of our family for brunch in Newport Beach at Sol Cocina.

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Leonard and I got to meet our newest grand niece for the first time.

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Ellie with her Baba, my SIL Kelly.


Later in the day some of my family gathered at Vera’s again for more food and fellowship.

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I’ve posted this photo before but I love it enough to post it again, Pop (dzeda) and Ellie. My dear old pop made it out to Vera’s twice and he lasted for several hours which was good for him.

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My pop with 5 of his 8 children.

Leonard and I managed to be with our pop for dinner at Kathy’s on Friday night, open house on Saturday, Dinner at Vera’s on Sunday and then we drove out on Monday morning to go out for breakfast with him and my sister Kathy and to say goodbye to him until we meet again. He got his 2 eggs sunny side up with hash browns, sausage, white toast and coffee and even though it was at Coco’s instead of Denny’s he said it was good. He also insisted on paying. He says he needs to get rid of his money. From breakfast we headed straight to the airport for Leonard’s flight back to Texas. I still had 24 hours left in California.


The fun just kept coming. After I dropped Leonard off I met up with my BFF from my Russian Baptist days and we had lunch and a few hours of catching up. Would you believe from this meet up I headed to the third restaurant of the day, Zov’s, to meet my sisters for dinner?


Kathy and I split our Kebob dinner and we all shared the dessert tray. Kathy, this could have been your late birthday celebration if my brain wasn’t completely fogged up by then! Oye!

When Vera and I returned home Dear’s brother and SIL stopped by for a brief visit since they couldn’t come to the Open House. It was good to see them face to face. BTW, Dear wasn’t with me in Southern California because he was working at a conference in Chicago.

I’m now home after flying first class and that’s a fun story all by itself. This post is way too long already. It’s good to be home and I thank God for watching over me and giving me valuable moments to treasure with my Pop, family and friends.

Since it’s Wednesday and ABC Wednesday is on the letter V this post will be linked up for V is for Vera! Thank you Mrs. Nesbitt and Roger with his team of ABCers.

New Space…

Our son Josh and his two partners have recently acquired new office space and were ready to invite clients and friends to celebrate with an open house. Josh and his partners are branch managers of Capstone Home Loans.

This is our son, Josh.

His new office.

A wonderful spread of good eats.

This was a great cascade of veggies that I’d like to recreate at a future event!

Everyone we spoke to at the open house had such good things to say about Josh and his work ethic. Dear and I were happy to hear these reports and we are so thankful to God for how he has blessed Josh and his work.

While I’m on the subject of Josh and his company I’ll share some photos from a Client Appreciation Event he had at Sounders game the last Sunday of August.

Josh is a huge soccer fan and this was an event he really enjoyed hosting.

Free tickets for the game and a pre-game buffet in the Coach’s Loft with VIP entrance. A fun way to show appreciation. And the cherry on the top was the fact that we beat the Portland Timbers!

Wednesday already and September is half over! Hope your week is going well.

Tablescape Tuesday ~ Open House Buffet

Update: You can find the Pumpkin Praline Trifle recipe here. The Bavarian Apple Torte is here. I’ll be posting the Mount Rainier Chili recipe here.

We had a open house this past Saturday at our little condo in Southern California. There were 16 of us that enjoyed each others company and some food and drink.


I went with an autumn theme for the buffet table which triples as our dining table and my computer table every other day. It’s always funny when I plan events like this because I get a bit confused about what I have here at the condo and what is at my home in Washington. I always have to improvise because the majority of my stuff is in Washington. Mish Mosh works for me in these situations.


These are some of the food and drink we served. Our main course was Mount Rainier Chili that is made with white beans and chicken. We had a salad and lots of yummy bread from the Diamond Jewish Bakery on Fairfax in L.A. My BIL Nick and sister Vera always stop there on the way to our condo and load us up with Rye, Pumpernickle, and Challah. We had a cheese tray with fruit and salami, bruschetta, guacamole. Our desserts were a Pumpkin Praline Trifle and a Bavarian Apple Tart. I’ll be posting the recipes later this week. They are both great desserts. Most of the serving pieces are from thrift stores and target clearance. Instead of a punch bowl I’ve been using this great glass jug that I got at target for $12.95. It has a lid, too.


We were blessed with some great company at the open house. Friends from our past and new friends and family. I didn’t get a photo of everyone. My brother Tim and his wife Letty, my niece Michelle and her husband Ryan, My bloggy walking buddy Willow and her husband the Professor, and our old friends Ken and Heidi. My sister Vera and her husband Nick, my mom and dad, sister Kathy, and grand nephew Jackson didn’t get in any of the photos.

For more Tablescapes you can visit Susan at Between Naps on the Porch on Tuesday.

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage and demanding a ransom for me to access them. I’m slowly cleaning up many of my posts where PB have added ugly black and grey boxes where my photos used to be. So frustrating!