Sunday Sourdough

Gold Canyon, Arizona

We fixed Sunday brunch for our friends here at the RV Park this morning. This is the same group we had for bagna cauda last fall.

Today’s menu included sourdough pancakes, Canadian bacon, scrambled eggs with pepper jack cheese, and sauteed apples with cardamom.

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Yummy…

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The featured food was the sourdough pancakes. None of our guests had eaten them before.

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I think they are scrumptious and our guests did, too.

The base for sourdough pancakes is a starter that’s mixed with flour and water the night before you’re going to use it. The next morning, you remove some of this mixture to use as starter next time. The remainder  is mixed with the pancake ingredients and cooked.

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To begin a starter, you’ll need to mix flour, water, yeast, and sugar or honey. At least that’s how I started ours. There are as many ways to make a sourdough starter as there are ways to use it.

Our sourdough starter is only four years old. That’s very young compared to Carol’s which is over 30 years old.

We hadn’t used our starter for about a month, so it had a layer of dark liquid on the top.

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The liquid is alcohol from the fermentation process which acts like a preservative.

So while the starter looks hideous, it’s actually a good thing. And it tastes much better than it looks! 🙂

In the Moment

Gold Canyon, Arizona

Many years ago, I “saw” a play at home plate while Melissa was playing softball.

I was sitting in the score keepers’ box entering the game stats throughout the game. There was a play at home base where the runner just beat the tag, so she was safe and scored a run.

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The play unfolded in front of my eyes so that it appeared to be in slow motion. I had never had that happen before, so I exclaimed, “Wow! That was amazing!”

Bob, the referee, asked me what I was talking about. I explained it to him, and Bob calmly said, “You ‘saw’  it.”

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Lebron-Slow-Motion-Dunk (1)Apparently referees see it all the time, or at least they should. If they don’t, they shouldn’t be referees. 🙂

That was about twenty years ago, and I haven’t “seen” anything since.

But the good news is that I’m getting closer.

I’ve been working hard on my “soft game” in pickleball. In the soft game, the ball is hit back and forth slowly and softly (called dinking) until someone makes a mistake that allows the opponent to smash the sh*t out of the ball.

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Dinking is the closest thing I’ve ever experienced to being in the moment since I saw the play at home plate.

More and more, dink play is slowing down for me. I can watch the angles of my opponents’ paddles and determine where the ball is going to go before they hit it. It’s getting easier to calculate angle, arc, and intensity.

It’s an amazing Zen-like feel. And it is awesome!

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TGIF!

Gold Canyon, Arizona

Dear Gentle Blog Reader:

If you are reading this first thing on Friday morning, here’s what I’ll be eating while you are reading…

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A doughnut!

I LOVE doughnuts! They are one of my top five foods. Cheesecake has always been and will always be my favorite food of all. But doughnuts are securely in the top five.

The doughnut pictured above is a bear claw. It’s my second favorite doughnut.

Numero Uno Doughnut? A Cronut!

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 Croissant + Doughnut = Cronut

I actually haven’t had a true Cronut. But I’m guessing that they are as divine as they sound–taking the best of each pastry and perfectly blending them into one delicious delight!

There’s only one place that sells a Cronut: Dominique Ansel Bakery in New York.

Shoppers can buy a maximum of two Cronuts if they are lucky enough to get some before they run out for the day…

Because I’m nowhere near NYC, I’ve only had a Croissant Donut at Dunkin’ Donuts. (It can’t be called a Cronut because that’s trademarked. 🙂 )

1414506799730While I’m sure it’s nowhere near the Cronut in taste, it’s a decent alternative, at least for those of us who can’t fly to get the real thing.

It’s really quite good, but I wish they had a red light at Dunkin’ Donuts like they do at Krispy Kreme to say when the doughnuts are fresh and hot!

For many, many of my working years I rewarded myself every Friday with a doughnut. Seemed like the perfect reward for making it through the week.

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Some weeks, I had two Fridays because the week seemed twice as long.

The Gold Canyon RV Resort offers free doughnuts every Friday. All we have to do is listen to The Buzz–news in and around the park for about ten minutes.

Seems like a small price to pay for a doughnut!

Thank goodness it’s Friday!

$1.8 Million View

Gold Canyon, Arizona

We are sandwiched in between several luxury motor homes, but one stands out above the rest.

It’s made by Newell. All pricing for coaches made by Newell begins at $1.5 million.

As near as I can tell from snooping around, our neighbours’ model retails for $1.8 million.

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So that means we have a nearly $2 million view with just that one motor home.

We haven’t met the owners yet. They haven’t been here much. But I’m hoping to get a tour of the insides.

Here are some photos of random insides of some Newell coaches.

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Homer’s Cousin Palooza

Gold Canyon, Arizona

Homer’s cousin lives just down the street in Gold Canyon RV Resort.

Both are Palazzo (paw-law-zo)  coaches made by Thor, but they are different models. Palazzo is an Italian word for a large, splendid residence or public building, such as a palace or museum.

Thor markets the Palazzo as a “compact diesel pusher.” Diesel pusher means that the engine, which runs on diesel, is in the back. Compact represents the length of the vehicle which is short compared to other Class A motor homes.

Here’s Homer.

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And here’s his bigger and slightly older cousin Palooza (paw-loose-awe).

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Homer is a 33.2 model.

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We have yet to figure out how the numbering system works for motor homes. Homer is 34 feet long. So the 33 is one number smaller than his overall length. I have no idea what the 2 is for.

Palooza is a 36.1 model.

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He is 37 feet long, so that makes sense in that his model number is one number shorter than his overall length. But, again, I have no idea what the 1 is for. See what I mean about the numbering system? It’s almost as weird as pickleball scoring. 🙂

We have met one of Palooza’s owners. (I don’t remember her name, so I’ll call her Cindy for now.) Cindy’s a very nice, albeit slightly odd, woman.  She and her husband travel throughout the year from their home base in Ohio.

Cindy is an AKC certified dog trainer for Good Behavior. I’ve thought about asking her to help with Sophie’s tendency to tackle timid dogs and scare their owners to death. All the toy poodles’ owners would probably chip in for the training costs.

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Anyway…

Cindy hasn’t really given her motor home a name; she just calls it “Palooza”. I think she thinks that’s how Palazzo is pronounced. 😉

Gucking Foogle

Gold Canyon, Arizona

We are back in Internet land, and while I love the Internet there are some ways that Internet accessibility and use are a pain.

Like most people, I use Google to find things. It’s fast, it’s easy, and it’s effective.

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Google’s great!

However, I think Google has changed my expectations for the way I retrieve and process information. And many of those changes aren’t for the better.

  • I expect answers immediately and get frustrated when I can’t find information in a nanosecond.
  • I purposely don’t remember some things because I can readily look them up in the cloud.
  • And, most importantly, I sometimes expect others to be Google-ized and able to provide information on demand.

I realized this big time when Rich and I moved back into unlimited Internet connectivity.

Google’s not the problem. I am.

While I will continue to use and love Google, I’m now on a personal mission to use Google more discriminately and effectively.

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Explanation of “Gucking Foogle”:

I went to Reno High School and our mascot was a husky. A friend of my sister’s also went to RHS and told a story of when she was a cheerleader.  The basketball team was to play crosstown rivals who made a huge sign encouragng the team to “Huck the Fuskies!”

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(Switch the first two letters… 🙂 )

Data, Glorious Data!

Gold Canyon, Arizona

We are back at Gold Canyon RV Resort, and we are back with Dish television and Internet.

It’s hardwired to each spot in the resort.

Color me HAPPY!

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I have loved data all my life.

One of my first jobs was as a data entry clerk entering numbers into columns in bookkeeping ledgers. And don’t even get me started on the thrill of running a 10-key adding machine.

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Later when computers came along, I did data processing: entering data into computers where the computer programs did the calculations.

My first computer was a Commodore 64. It had a whopping 64 kilobytes of RAM (random access memory). I LOVED that machine!

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As computers got more powerful and after graduation from college, I dove into databases: both design and implementation. Their capacity to store and manipulate data was a perfect fit for a data geek like me.

I loved my job as a data analyst and could lose myself for hours writing SQL code to extract data to help organizations solve problems.

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I’m not working with data while I’m on ‘faux retirement’, but I still love data although now it’s in a different form.

I love Internet data!

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I’m so thrilled to be back with full data that I can access through my phone, my computer, and my tablet. Sometimes all at once.

Yeeehaaaawwwww!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go Hawks

El Mirage, Arizona

Yesterday was our last day at Pueblo El Mirage Resort.

And today’s Super Bowl Sunday. For the record, I don’t care who wins. I just hope both teams play well and that it’s a close game.

As Sophie and I took our last long walk around the resort, we passed by dozens of Seahawks fans.

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Many of the parks’ residents are from the Pacific northwest.

And they are very proud to be part of the Legion of 12.

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Young and old, it seems like the northwest crews around here are all rooting, “Go Hawks!”

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Their allegiance runs closely below their patriotism.

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I’ve seen oodles of the Seattle Seahawks balloons floating around the park.

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But surprisingly I haven’t seen two of the same banners or flags.

I did, however, see a Boise State Football flag that made this Idahoan homesick. 🙂

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