Friday, May 30, 2014

Friday Funnies

Admittedly, several titles came to mind for this photo taken at the F&P last weekend.

Hamming it Up was our choice over Two Hams or A Fork in Pork.

Yes, this is a shameless "selfie" taken by Grenville — he's the ham with the fork. 
Do you have a photo title? If so, please share yours in a comment.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

CWR and Assateague Lighthouse

This past weekend we took a 45-minute drive to Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). The 3.2-mile Wildlife Nature Loop there is closed to vehicle traffic until 3 pm daily. It's a perfect place to walk or bike ride; we did both. And, it's best to go now before hot, humid weather arrives along with MANY mosquitoes and summer tourists.

After bike riding twice around the loop, we walked the short trail to the Assateague Lighthouse.

The Assateague Lighthouse is on the National Register of Historic Places and still an active navigational aid. It is located on the southern end of Assateague Island off the coast of the Virginia Eastern Shore in Chincoteague NWR

Daily operation is overseen by the U.S. Coast Guard. The 142-foot lighthouse replaced a 45-foot lighthouse. That one was built in 1833 as there was no guiding light in a stretch along the Chesapeake Bay and Delaware Bay. As coastal commerce increased so did shipwrecks on shoals along the Delaware and Virginia coastlines. 

Congress allocated $50,000 for a new lighthouse in 1860. Construction began but was delayed by the Civil War and completed in 1867 after the war ended. The taller brick lighthouse was conical and made of red brick. Its alternating bands of red and white were painted in 1968.

The first light was an oil-burning, fixed Fresnel lens visible for up to 18 miles. In 1933, electricity replaced oil and three 100-watt bulbs were placed inside the Fresnel lens. Twin rotating lights flash one after the other from a height of 154 feet above sea level.

In 2013, the lighthouse closed several months for a much needed $1.5 million restoration. This before photo was taken during a June 2007 visit.

It reopened in early fall of 2013. The top of the lighthouse is accessible April through November for visitors to climb to the lens tower by way of a cast iron staircase.

These lighthouse fun shots (double and fractured) were shot straight out of the camera (SOOC) with special effects in my Olympus Tough TG-2, an all-weather point and shoot digital camera.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Friday Funnies

Today it's another double-header just for the fun of it cause sometimes you gotta laugh.

Starting with a really BAD day on the roadway for the fellow carrying this load. We came upon this scene right after the hay bales had fallen off the trailer.

Making the best of recent heavy rainstorms, this robin was splishing and splashing.

Thanks to everyone who commented on our We Took a Trip post. Our destination was Alexandria, VA, less than 4 hours from home. Photos posted were from Old Town, the city's historic district, often called George Washington's adopted hometown. We had a great 2-day get-away; future posts will highlight a few places visited.

Enjoy YOUR weekend. 

This is a holiday weekend in the U.S. which on Monday observes Memorial Day, a federal holiday. This weekend is traditionally seen as the start of the summer season.

Formerly called Decoration Day, Memorial Day commemorates men and women, who have died in military service for the U.S. It originally started as an event to honor Union soldiers killed during the Civil War. After World War I, it was extended to include all men and women who died in any war or military action.

It is traditional to fly the U.S. flag at half mast from dawn until noon. Many volunteers place an American flag on graves in national cemeteries.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

We Took a Trip . . .

This past weekend for a First date anniversary, our 17th such celebration; actual wedding anniversary is in August. Here are some of the sights we saw. 

There were old buildings . . .

Rooftops and steeples . . .

Interesting and colorful towers . . .

We had a great time with (a's you can see) and perfect weather too.

Where did we go?  Here's some landmark buildings in the city we visited (in state). 

BIG HINT it's very close to Washington, DC and was mentioned in an earlier post.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

A 5th of Happiness

If you read the previous blog post, you know that this weekend we celebrated a special anniversary, that of our first date, 17 years ago. 

But, it wasn't the only anniversary celebration in Alexandria, VA, which is where we spent the weekend.

Another couple was also celebrating. As we later learned, it was their 5th wedding anniversary. It's not every day we see a bride and groom walking along the street (who does?). Being curious, we watched as they headed to an area called Market Square, found a bench in a secluded area and started taking "selfies."

Of course, being the shy folks we are NOT, we approached and asked if they wanted some help. Grenville volunteered to use their cell phone and while he snapped photos with it, I took some candid photos.
This delightful and very happy young couple told us that they had met at their jobs, married in Washington, DC, and lived in the area. They decided to recreate their special day with a getaway weekend that included their wedding outfits. After telling them about our celebration, we asked IF we could share theirs in a blog post. They said OK and we gave them the F&P blog address and our names.

Congratulations Maggie and Mitch. We wish you both many more years of joy !
We hope that you see this post as we did not exchange email addresses and I will gladly send these photos to you. Please contact Dorothy (Beatrice) at the email address under  "Who Writes This Stuff."

THANKS for sharing your happiness with us and readers of this blog.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Hats Off

To us today (use your imagination)

It's the anniversary of our 1st date on May 16, 1997 — YIKES 17 years ago.
Yes, we celebrate this date as well as our wedding anniversary, which is in August. 
And, we are still having fun. Doesn't it show?
Just as in previous years, we're doing something special to celebrate...details later.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Money & Sex Emails

Like many folks who are online daily, we get a fair amount, LOTS of junk and spam emails. As prolific as spammers are in sending unwanted and potentially dangerous emails, we are very skilled in the Delete function — these recent messages are exactly as received with a deleted link in the second (discretion advised).

This one offered $ . . .

HM Revenue & Customs

After the last annual calculations of your fiscal activity we have determined that you are eligible to receive tax refund of 358.52 GBP. To access your tax refund, please download and fill the Tax Refund Form attached to this email. A refund can be delayed for a variety of reasons. For example :

-invalid records
-applying after the deadline.

HM Revenue & Customs
Tax Credit Office
PO Box 1970
Liverpool L75 1WX

Here's an invite we  ignored. . .

Clothing Optional Party in our Hotel Room
Hey, my friends and I are throwing a clothing optional get together!
So far we have 6 girls and 2 guys coming. We need more guys and girls. You're welcome to just watch if you don't want to participate in the fun. Singles and couples are invited. You must be 21 and over. All guys will be wearing protection, (aka condoms) no exceptions. Go to xxxxxxxxxxx dot org and search for it and you will see it. I posted the address and more info on there. If you have any questions let me know. 

We were advised about a British tax refund although we live in the U.S. and invited to a sex party . . . 

What's in YOUR Email lately ?

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Celebrating Mom

Grenville and I celebrated Mother's Day this past weekend with a road trip to our home state of New Jersey for a visit with my mom. 

This celebration featured dinner at a favorite local restaurant, the Stage House Tavern in Scotch Plains, NJ, where the food presentation looked as good as it tasted. 

Our dinner choices included lamb sausage appetizer, entrees of sea scallops/vegetables and chicken with crabmeat/bĂ©arnaise sauce. One of the dessert choices was peanut butter mousse pie.

The tavern remains in its original location and was once a regular stop for stage lines between New York and Philadelphia. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1982. (It was crowded with celebrants, so photo taking wasn't possible.)

And, many thanks for comments on my earlier Mother's Day post.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day with Feathers

Today is a day to celebrate mothers, including this mom robin who set up home in the red cedar tree of our front yard.

While she raised her family of four young robins (chicks).

Feeding time was always a busy time as both parents feed this always hungry group..

The chicks grew very quickly  — these photos were all taken within one week. 
And soon all were gone, leaving their home neat for perhaps a new family..

Wishing all blog moms a Happy Mother's Day.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Friday Funnies

Southern take on another well known bus line perhaps . . .

Maybe Elvis was on one of these buses, after he left the room?

Happy early Mother's Day to all our fellow bloggers who celebrate this day. 
Relax and enjoy yourself — you deserve all the attention, and gifts are nice too.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Grandson's New "Do"

Grandson was sporting a new hairdo style when we visited at Easter. This was a new look for him. He wasn't sure if he would keep it. 
His sister still has curls and LOTS of those . . . we love this little girl, curls and all.

Both grand kids were glad to see Grandpa Grenville

Grandma and grandson had some fun too.

These visits are too short and far between, which is why we hope to relocate closer.
But, there's the minor BIG detail of selling our VA home, The Frog & PenguINN firstWe're making some selling changes which we hope will bring future results. As the song lyrics said (Animals 1965) . . . we gotta get out of this place. These grands are growing up way TOO fast, of course, we're not aging at all.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Lime Marinated Pork

Today, May 5, is celebrated as Cinco de Mayo. It is not, as often assumed, the day of Mexico's independence celebrations, which are held on September 16. It's the anniversary celebrating Mexican forces victory over French forces on May 5, 1862 in the fight for independence at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War. Less than 5,000 Mexican fighters battled 4 hours against 6,000 professional French soldiers. 

While it is a manor holiday in Mexico, it has become a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage in the U.S. where celebrations include parades, performances and food.

Cooking is a favorite activity at the Frog & PenguINN (as many well know). Any celebration with food is OK with us. This lime-garlic pork marinade was perfect for pork chops bought last week. It would probably work well with chicken, but that's another dinner.

The lime zest gives the chops an extra zing. You can adjust the seasonings to your taste buds. Cook the chops in the broiler or on the grill. (The photo below was taken before all the ingredients were gathered— but everything listed below was included.)

Garlic-Lime Marinade  
  • 4 (6 oz. each) boneless pork chops OR 2 larger center cut chops
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp dried cilantro 
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • lime zest
  • 1/2 lime, juice 
  • salt and fresh pepper
Trim pork of excess fat. Season pork with garlic, cumin, coriander, cilantro, chili powder, paprika, salt and pepper. 

Add lime zest and squeeze lime juice on top of chops, then refrigerate and marinate for up to 30 minutes, longer is OK as well.

Line broiler pan with foil as it makes clean SO easy. Place pork chops on broiler pan and broil each side 4-5 minutes or until browned. Time depends on chop thickness.

Serve with rice seasoned with cilantro and/or a salad or other vegetables. We served these with black bean salad and a side salad. Handily, this salad recipe (on a can of Bush's Reduced Sodium Black Beans) used many of the ingredients as for the marinade.

Black Bean Salad

  • 1 can black beans, drained 
  • 1 green bell pepper diced *
  • 1/2 C red onion, diced
  • 1 garlic glove, minced
  • 1 tsp dried cilantro
  • 1/4 C olive oil
  • 4-5 TBSP red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp lime juice

* Substituted 2 stalks of chopped celery as we were out of green pepper, YIKES.

Serve black bean salad on top of the salad greens OR separately as a side dish and expect leftovers. 

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Temporary Tenant

Spring has brought a new tenant to the Frog & PenguINN yard. 

This temporary lodger is nesting in this front yard red cedar tree. It's not the first time that this little tree has hosted a family. In the past few years, several robin families found this an ideal spot.

Only the female robin can brood  the eggs which will hatch 12 to 14 days after incubation Both the male and female robin parents then play an active role in feeding the baby robins (called chicks) and will spend almost every hour searching for food, then returning to the nest every few minutes all day long, sunrise to sunset. 

Th chicks will leave the nest (fledge) about 14 to 16 days after hatching. We expect to see these young robins hopping around the yard until their wings are strong enough for flight. Meanwhile, the adult robins will be hovering close by, feeding and protecting them until they become self-sufficient — just like most parents.

DO you have any recent yard wildlife visitors?

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Wash & Wear with Caution

Not exactly what you'd expect on a clothing label, is it?

BUT this was the cautionary wording on a Lands' End sweater recently bought at a local thrift store; the label stated that was USA made

Here's the care label and the full text of that warning label, with the price solely for the purpose of a post — not costly, as you will see later.
It's certain that I won't be wearing this sweater near a flame/fire — who would anyway?

Maybe that's WHY it was on the sales rack — 49¢ was a very "HOT" bargain.