Thanksgiving Dinner and a Wedding in Albion- Thurs. Nov. 23, 2017

Every other year Colleen and Deke have spent Thanksgiving with their friend, Toby Malina, and her husband, Jim Heid, who live in Albion, a few miles south of Mendocino on the northern California Coast. This is the 4th year that they have set up a tent in their yard to entertain 40 or 50 guests.

Below Colleen and Wheeler are admiring the setup before dinner began.

This was the table for the 10 of us complete with place cards:

Deke McClelland and Colleen are enjoying the delicious dinner:

There were 5 tables of 10. That is Clark and Brandon at the table on the right:

When dinner was over, Toby announced that there would be a wedding! Colleen and Deke were married by Toby who spoke eloquently about them. This was a surprise to most of the guests, though our family knew about it for several weeks.

Wheeler and Colleen; Deke, Max, and Sam enter the tent after the main dinner.


Colleen’s son Wheeler and Deke’s sons, Max and Sam McClelland, were the attendants.


Toby announced that dessert would be wedding cake.

The wedding cake

Today was Brandon and Lisa’s 15th wedding anniversary, so Toby had a cake for them, too.

Cutting the cake: Congratulations, Colleeen and Deke!!

It was an exciting day!


Dinner in Ft. Bragg on Mendocino Coast – Wed. Nov. 22, 2017

Colleen, Deke, and their boys, and Brandon, Lisa, Beckett, and Clark and I are spending Thanksgiving on the Mendocino Coast. From 1968 to 1978, Erin’s paternal grandparents operated Wheeler’s Delicatessen, a Mom and Pop type deli in Fort Bragg on the coast, about 10 miles north of Mendocino. The deli occupied the space on the left below. A restaurant called Cafe Verona now occupies the space as well as the space on the right.

Tonight we all had dinner at Cafe Verona.

L to R: Brandon, Lisa, Beckett, Deke, Colleen, Deke’s boys Sam and Max, Wheeler, and Clark

Colleen, Wheeler, and Deke in front of the old entrance to the deli.The building used to be white. Now it is painted a red brick color.
Tomorrow we will have Thanksgiving dinner at a friend of Colleen and Deke’s in Albion, a few miles south of Mendocino.


Tommy Trick or Treating – Tues. Oct. 31, 2017

Talking about Tommy trick or treating, Steve said, “He didn’t last long. It was cold. At least the snow stopped as it got later.”
I never thought of worrying about snow today, though it did feel nippy here in Sacramento this afternoon.

The owner of this house really goes all out with all of those carved pumpkins and skull heads.


Tommy was a Race Car Driver for Halloween Party – Tues. Oct. 31, 2017

Tommy’s school had a Halloween parade today. Isn’t that the cutest race car driver you have ever seen? And I am not prejudiced!

Erin and Steve met at a 20-30 club Halloween party. I think that Erin went as a cow! They used to celebrate Halloween rather than their anniversary.


Paco x-Ray; Happy Birthday, Joanne – Wed. Oct. 4, 2107

Steve wrote that Paco had a follow up appointment in Grand Rapids today. All is healing well and the doctor gave Paco the green light for bowling and throwing again… just needs to start slowly.
The surgeon also recommended some exercises with one of those rubber bands to strengthen Paco’s rotator cuff muscles.

We also had a doctor visit here. Clark saw his internist for a general physical. Clark has been in a lot of pain due to the pseudogout in his wrist and elbow. He is wearing a brace on his right wrist. He cannot grasp things. The doctor said there is no remedy for pseudogout which is deposits of calcium compound crystals.

I just checked on line and it says: “True gout (uric acid crystals) is a metabolic problem and can usually be brought under control with dietary measures or specific drugs.
“Pseudogout occurs when calcium pyrophosphate crystals form in the synovial fluid in the joints. Crystals can also deposit in the cartilage, where they can cause damage. Buildup of crystal in the joint fluid results in swollen joints and acute pain.”

After Clark’s appointment, we headed to Lodi and took my friend Joanne Donovan out to lunch for her birthday. We went to Wine and Roses Inn which I had not been to in probably 15 years. The gardens surrounding it have grown very lush. I had a very tasty Tamale Pancake which I had never heard of before- a masa pancake piled high with chicken and avocado salad.

Joanne is shown below admiring her birthday dessert: chocolate torte – that’s a yellow snapdragon decoration on it – accompanied by a little bit of mousse and some ice cream in a chocolate shell.

Happy Birthday, Joanne!!

Tommy on picture day-September 28, 2017

Tommy asked Paco to groom his hair for his school picture which was taken today. I don’t know if the video will show up or not, but Paco put “product” on Tommy’s hair and gently smoothed it through.

Tommy looks so pleased!


Mona Winks; Happy Birthday, Patricia!! – Tues. Sept. 19, 2017

Cindy wasn’t 100% sure of where that photo that I posted yesterday of her, Erin, and Shannon was taken. Today I had the following message from Cindy:

“I googled “famous squares in Venice” and found out that that is St. Mark’s Square.. (I recognize the name and the photos.) I remember all the birds, and you can see some through the wall behind us. Another thing I noticed on looking at the picture again is that Erin is holding a couple guidebooks or a guidebook and a map. That is appropriate as I believe she did most of the trip planning and was often consulting her guide books.. (Shannon may have also done some of the planning. I just followed along!) I know some of Erin’s favorite guidebooks were the Rick Steves series. Venice was one of the most memorable stops during that trip.

You are a good researcher, Cindy! A super sleuth.

Actually the Mona Winks book is on my bookshelf. It is Rick Steves’ guide to the top museums of Europe. I should say that the cover with the front half of the book is on my shelf. As you can see in the photo below, I just have through page 196. The Contents page of the book lists Amsterdam, Venice, Florence, Rome, and Madrid for the 2nd half of the book. I think that Erin tore out that part of the book and gave it to me when my sister Patricia and I went to Italy in 1998.

Happy Birthday, Patricia!! This talk about Italy brings back many happy memories of our month of travel there in Spring of 1998.