pen rainbow

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Thursday Mini-Post—A Bucket of Sloths

Thnx, Steve!  For Caralee...

From the folks at Aviarios del Caribe Sloth Sanctuary in Costa Rica

I'd post the YouTube, but it seems to be disabled whenever I do, so here's a link to the YouTube:

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Wednesday—Good For You, Good For 60's Bike Safety

Be Alert  •  Obey The Rules  •  Stay Alive

Don't get too attached to these kids

A little like the Hunger Games circa 1961.  Brought to you by the same folks who gave us high school driver's ed during the 1970's.  

I like the last page where they cover all of the other ways that kids could accidentally kill themselves, playing in leaf piles being one of them.  As if 24 pages of frame-by-frame fatal accidents weren't enough to scare the beejezus out of 1960's kids.  Perhaps, THE GUN the kid is waving around would be a greater hazard, but I guess no one got hurt until the truck transporting a gasoline drum, a box of ammo, and a carton of rat poison, backed over one of their heads and decided to spin a brodie.  

How we became a generation of helicopter parents

Pretty much every kid in this fun little safety booklet published by the Clark County Sheriff's Department Police Safety Council, bites it.  That's because all of the accidents portrayed in the cartoon vignettes are taken from actual police Dragnet, which ended two years before the booklet was published, but the message was the same—Don't be a dipshit!  And, the police are your friends!  Wheee!

Ralph Lamb, Sheriff, & Officer Runkie...a "tremendously interesting illustrated manual"

Check out the old-timey Vegas phone number:  SU 6-6620

All of the people in this booklet are either pink or no color.  This isn't the whole booklet, but here are some of the more entertaining pages...

Look out for that large, clearly visible man walking very slowly
across the extremely wide street!

"Another unnecessary death due to carelessness on George's part"—Way to go, George

Mary's luck runs out after she avoids the parked car, the bus & the potential kidnapper,
but gets nailed by the car.  The bike got crunched, but Mary jumped up,
dusted off her skirt, and took the bus home.  Girls rule!

The cyclist in this scenario apparently came back to life
only to be struck again by a second car..."crippled for life."

"...not the 'Hurt' type—it is the 'Killing' type."  

Don't be a smart aleck!

Beware of well-dressed older men lurking behind trees holding bags of candy

Strip Hotel Patrons 
Vintage downtown Vegas

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Tuesday's Cupboard—Coastal Pizza

Coastal because of the fresh salmon_simplified because of the premade cornbread crusts

hot out of the oven!

From Weight Watchers cookbook, Pizza, Pizza ©2003, the original recipe calls for crust made from scratch.  I've saved time & substituted Vicolo All-Natural Cornbread Pizza Crusts available at Whole Foods.  These can be frozen & thawed for 45 minutes before you start making the pizza.  

I used about a pound of fresh, boneless, skinless salmon fillet and simmered it in the marinade in a nonstick pan on the stovetop with the green onions.  You could also marinate the salmon, then grill, braise, or broil it, whichever method you prefer.  Ask the butcher at Safeway to skin the salmon for you if they have only boneless fillets with the skin.  

Meyer lemons have a richer, sweeter taste than regular lemons, and the skins are the color of egg yolks.  They are thought to be a cross between a mandarin and a true lemon and are in season from November through March.  I have a tree, but you can also find them at Whole Foods.  Regular lemons or bottled lemon juice also works!

Fresh-bake method:  Serve this as a fresh salad pizza with no baking at the end.  Instead, bake the pizza crusts as directed (12 - 14 minutes).  While the crusts are still warm, spread the goat cheese evenly between the 2 pizzas; add the dressed salad greens (uncooked); top with cooked salmon.  Serve & enjoy!

Extra toppings:  Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of sunflower seeds, pine nuts, or any kind of toasted nut on top of the cooked salmon.   

The fresh salmon marinated with fresh thyme and lemon juice makes this an exceptionally delicious pizza!

     Adapted from Weight Watchers Pizza, Pizza ©2003

Preheat the oven to 425° F
Prep time:  25 minutes
Cooking time: 10-12 minutes

Makes 2 cornbread pizzas_4 slices in each pizza_2 slices per serving_4 servings

Equipment:  A baking sheet or pizza pan that can fit 2 small size pizza crusts

Fresh ingredients make this super delicious!


The marinade

•  4 T. fresh lemon juice (2 to 3 Meyer lemons)
•  2 T. fresh thyme, washed & stripped of the barky ends (I use the tender stems & leaves)
•  1/2 tsp. kosher salt  
•  1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
•  1 T. extra-virgin olive oil

Use Meyer lemons if you can find them

•  1/2 to 1 lb. fresh, boneless, skinless salmon fillet (depending on how much salmon you want on each pizza) 
•  2 bunches of green onions, trimmed & chopped into 1" pieces
•  2 c. fresh Spring greens_baby spinach_or chopped kale
•  3/4 c. crumbled or soft goat cheese
•  1 pkg. of Vicolo All-Natural cornbread pizza crusts (2 crusts)

Make It!

Marinate the salmon & dress the greens

1.  Combine the lemon juice, thyme, salt, pepper & oil.  Transfer 2 T. to a small bowl.

2.  Place the salmon fillet into a shallow dish and pour the remaining marinade over the fillet.  Lift the fillet so that the marinade coats the underside of the fillet as well as the top.  Let stand for 15 minutes.

3.  Meanwhile, toss the greens with the remaining marinade & bake the crusts for 5 minutes on 425 degrees.  Set aside.

4.  In a nonstick pan over med-high heat, simmer the salmon & green onions in the marinade, uncovered for 10 minutes until the meat is opaque and flakes apart with a fork.  I like to let the fish cook until the marinade reduces, and the onions are soft.  Remove from the heat.

5.  Divide the goat cheese evenly between the crusts; top evenly with the greens, then the salmon-onion mixture.  Distribute the toppings so that they are level on the crusts.

6.  Bake in a 425 degree oven for 10 to 12 minutes until cheese is heated through.  

7.  Use a pizza cutter to slice each pizza into 4 equal pieces.  Serve immediately!    

Set aside 2 T. of marinade for the greens

Toss the greens in the lemon-thyme marinade

Pre-bake the crusts for 5 minutes on 425°F

Simmer the salmon & green onions in the lemon-thyme reduction

Spread the goat cheese on the crusts...

...add the greens

Top with cooked, flaked salmon-onion mixture
& bake until heated through

Bon appétit!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Monday—The Reading Corner

Chapter One — Princeton Street (continued from February 18)  

Click HERE for the beginning of Chapter 1

Introducing Betty's dog, Cindy...

The Colorado River on the way to Nelson, Nevada

The Meadows

Chapter 1 —Princeton Street

The Boulder Canyon Project was part the federal government’s massive economic recovery plan to create jobs and develop the national infrastructure.  New Deal initiatives focused on large-scale construction mainly in the western and southern states, including the federally-owned Tennessee Valley Authority, the Hoover Dam, the Golden Gate Bridge, the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, Shasta Dam, and the nation’s first freeway in Los Angeles.  

Streets around downtown Las Vegas were named after distinguished U.S. Presidents, like Roosevelt, Hoover, and Jefferson.  They were also given the names of esteemed universities like Stanford, Yale, Harvard and Princeton. These neighborhoods were designed to lift the spirits of depressed Americans and reinforce the notion that hard-working families could restore prosperity to themselves and to the nation.    

Each compact, three-bedroom house on Princeton Street sat on a quarter acre lot with a large yard, two stately elms, and several towering cottonwoods lining the driveway.  The surrounding blocks were laid out in long rectangles with ten houses on each side of the street.  Twenty-seven years after they were built, many of the houses were still painted in their original shades of patio pink, colonial yellow, zenith blue, cypress green, powder white, and mohawk red.     

Troi and Brooke had returned to playing underneath the protective shade of the big elm closest to street.  They were inspecting the transparent husks of Cicadas that were attached to the thick gray bark of the tree.  They examined the delicate papery remains of the mysterious beetles and decided to release the shells from the trunk with small twigs that had fallen from the branches of the elm.  They held their little treasures in their cupped hands and wondered what they could do with them next.  Above their heads, high up in the sturdy branches of the elm, live specimens were singing for their future mates.  Nonstop buzzing cut through the neighborhood at full volume, both comforting and annoying everyone within earshot of the mighty concerto.    

The girls were considering the use of Cicada shells as decorations on top of their mud pies.  Their grandmother’s front yard was an endless source of exploration and adventure.  The long, straight sidewalk was perfect for hopscotch, and the soft, sandy soil was ideal for creating a vast system of miniature dams, rivers, and lakes.  

“Now, go outside and play,” Deanna told them every morning after they’d finished their Cheerios.  

The girls couldn’t wait to go outside.  They would push their bare feet against the chrome legs of the kitchen table, rocket down the narrow hallway, skid into the bathroom, and brush their teeth as fast as they could. Five minutes later, they were dressing themselves in hand-me-down, sleeveless, cotton floral tops and brightly colored cotton shorts.  Shoes were optional during the summer, but if required, they would slide into a pair of well worn, rubber thongs, a footwear staple for all Las Vegas residents.      

After extracting every Cicada shell within their reach and storing them in an old coffee can they’d found in the back yard, the sisters raced up the steps of the front porch, yanked open the screen door, wrestled over the front doorknob, bolted past their great-grandmother who was watching The Today Show in the living room, and bounded into the kitchen to ask for spoons to dig in the dirt.  They were planning to make a river ending in a rather large lake for their mudpies.

As expected, their grandmother, Betty, pulled open a drawer and handed each of them a bent tablespoon.  

“Have fun girls, but don’t bother the raccoons, and leave Cindy alone.  She’s old, and she’ll bite you."  

Cindy was their grandmother’s cantankerous, black and white border collie. 

They had been warned by every adult in the household to avoid the potentially life-threatening hazards in the yard.  Coffee cans full of gasoline, an old refrigerator perched up against the back of the house, rusty nails that protruded from the stack of boards next to the shed, greasy engine parts, a tarp-covered fiberglass boat precariously balanced on blocks, and anything associated with rats.  In addition, there were the usual assortment of desert creatures, including black widows, rabid bats, and rattlesnakes.  Being in close proximity to deadly things made the girls cautious, but also curious and unafraid.  

Their grandmother, Betty, was a endless source of entertainment for them, and they loved her unconditionally.  To them, she was lovable and energetic, funny and patient, and the kindest person they'd ever known.  Days spent at her house were relaxed and full of discovery.  The months they spent playing in the yard on Princeton Street were as joyful and carefree as the girls would ever experience.   

Playing outside was worth the risks.  As they grew older, they would develop a keen sense of observation with razor-sharp attention to details, especially the kind that made the difference between hours of trouble-free play and a trip to the doctor for a tetanus shot.

To be HERE

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Sunday—Fashion Week 2013 Fall RTW

Fashion Week NYC_Trends from the runway_Fashion Week Ready-To-Wear Fall 2013

Current & upcoming Fashion Weeks in Milan (February 20 - 26) & Paris (February 26 - March 6).

Vogue Fashion Week 2013 home page_Click HERE

There were lots of leopard prints on the runway for Fall 2013...


...and fur

Carolina Herrera
...capes_drapes & big collars

Donna Karan
...and wraps

Diane von Furstenberg
...and chic new geometric prints

Marc by Marc Jacobs

...flowing soft wools & silks_To-Die-For shades of blue (my personal favorite, Armani)

Georgio Armani

...updated bold new blocked geometrics

Michael Kors

...and last, but not least_sophisticated nonchalance

Paul Smith
Paul Smith

Saturday, February 23, 2013

The sAtuRdAY sTOrE—troiwear

Vintage Bridge earrings!

Sold to Caralee Nelson ❤

13 cards in each hand

These cool little clip-ons belonged to my grandmother, Pearle, who was an avid Bridge player and a lifelong Nevada resident.  These are hard to find and a fun treasure for the dedicated Bridge player!

They measure about 1-1/2" W x 3/4" H x 1/4" D (see photos)

1-1/2" W x 3/4" H x 1/4" D

Good.  Minor chipping on one earring, but not enough to be noticeable when worn.  Comfortable fit, not too tight and not too loose.

minor chipping on one earring
no chipping on second earring
Costume jewelry, enamel over gold-colored metal.  13 cards in each hand (per earring).  Solid clip-on clasps.

Price:  $20  SOLD 


solid clasps on back

Can be worn flared out or flared in

for good luck!

backs of both earrings

Friday, February 22, 2013

Friday—The App Gallery

A set of Autopainter & Autopainter II pix from BC

I've been playing around with my iPhone this week.  These are a few of my BC pix processed on my iPhone using the Autopainter & Autopainter II mobile apps.  

Scroll your mouse over each photo to see the before & after images.

Click HERE for a map of the Artscape walking tour in Boulder City

Historic Boulder City Hotel

Afternoon Breeze sculpture by Roy W. Butler_Photo by DSMP

Romance sculpture by Jeannine Young_Photo by DSMP

Las Vegas Strip from the roof of the Rio Hotel

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Thursday Mini-Post—Snowflakes

We think that snowflakes look like this, and it turns out, they kinda do!

my PS snowflakes

Check out these amazing macro pix from of real snow crystals by Russian photographer, Andrew Osokin

Click HERE to see the real thing!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Wednesday—Good For You, Good for Not Getting Shot by Your Appliances

 This coulda happened in Nevada...just sayin'

do not trust this ^^^

I've been tweeting the Boulder City police blotter for a while, but I've yet to see this one make the BC Review.  It's only a matter of time, though.  Technically, no crime was committed, and the oven was not charged.  Click HERE for the full story (thnx to the happy folks at  


Anyhoo, here are 6 handy household tips to avoid being shot by your oven.

Handy Tip #1:

Do not store high-capacity magazines in your oven!  

And, I'm not talking about the latest swimsuit issue of Sports Ilustrated with that nearly naked woman on the front.  To be clear, I mean bullets—the kind that fly out of pistols, rifles, and muzzleloaders.

Handy Tip #2:

Always and without fail check ovens for live ammunition if you live in Florida, especially if you're anywhere near St. Petersburg where, apparently, this kind of thing happens.

Handy Tip #3:

Signage.  Post a warning in or around the vicinity of your oven so that innocent people who are craving waffles won't accidentally get shot.  It's common sense, people!
good signage = good sense!

Handy Tip #4:

Do not trust your appliances and possibly your bathroom fixtures if you live in Florida.

Handy Tip #5:

Buy a bullet-proof apron and a Kevlar toque.

Handy Tip #6:
Just in case...Keep a jar of quarters in the microwave for the bus trip to the hospital.       

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Tuesday's Cupboard—My Best Pea Soup Recipe!

It does not get any simpler than this...peas, veg bouillon, curry powder & soy sauce!  A perfectly elegant Springtime supper

simply delicious & easy!

I've adapted this recipe for the crockpot & used frozen peas instead of garden fresh (which would also be wonderful).  I've added 2 double cubes of veggie bouillon to the mix because I've also doubled the amount of water.  This results in a fuller bodied soup.  I like to top it off with a teaspoon of grated Parmesan, a sprinkle of sunflower seeds (for texture), and some freshly ground black pepper.  

Serve with a simple salad made from cut up beets (found in the produce department), chunky fresh mozzarella, and heirloom tomatoes piled on top of a bed of fresh greens.  Drizzle with your favorite light salad dressing (I suggest Amy's or Paul Newman's) & a generous grinding of black pepper.

beets, heirloom toms, mozzarella & greens

Super yummy & super easy!

Time for prep:  5 minutes
Cooking time in a crockpot:  1-1/2 to 2 hours on high
Degree of difficulty:  EASY


Adapted from Nutrition Nuggets © 1997 by Joy Lasseter, Ph.D.

immersion blender
• large capacity crockpot

water, bouillon, peas, curry powder, soy sauce
frozen or fresh peas will work!

•  2 double veggie bouillon cubes dissolved in 4 cups of hot water
•  1 32 - oz. bag of frozen peas
•  curry powder
•  1 T. soy sauce 
•  grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
•  salted or unsalted sunflower seeds (optional)

Make It!
1.  Empty frozen peas into a large-size crockpot (I use an oval 7-1/2 qt. crockpot).  

2.  Drop the veggie cubes into a 4 c. Pyrex measuring cup & add 4 cups of water.  Zap the water/bouillon cubes in the microwave for 5 minutes until hot.  Stir to dissolve bouillon cubes & pour over peas.

3.  Add 2 T. of curry powder & 1 T. of soy sauce (low-salt or regular is fine).  Stir to break up the peas and combine the bouillon.

4.  Cover & set temp to HIGH.  Cook for 1-1/2 to 2 hours until the peas are soft & tender.  

5.  Blend thoroughly with an immersion blender until smooth.  

6.  Top with grated Parmesan, a few sunflower seeds & freshly ground black pepper.  Serve immediately!
even better the next day!

a salad or a half sandwich is a great accompaniment!

Faster blender method

Don't want to wait for the crockpot?  Here is Dr. Joy's faster, original method for a smaller batch:

Place 2 c. of boiling water in a blender.  Add 4 cups of fresh raw green peas or thawed frozen uncooked green peas.  Purée in the blender until the texture is smooth.  Add 1/4 tsp. curry powder to taste & 1/2 tsp. light soy sauce.  Blend & serve with a salad or a sandwich.