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One last Christmas party

December 23, 2015

To start off–I wrote it wrong yesterday–it was the longest NIGHT and shortest DAY yesterday. Thanks to those of you who caught my mistake. It was the beginning of winter, and so far winter weather is not on the horizon. At 2:30 this morning we had some terrific lightning and thunder and then torrential rains this morning, but by noon it was gone. The skies turned blue and the temperature heated back up to 74 degrees. We got slightly over an inch of rain. More rain and thunderstorms are predicted tomorrow night and Christmas day. Mild temperatures continue. I have all the windows open in the house and it is December. Something is wrong with this picture.

This morning I received a surprise package from Pikes Market in Seattle. My good friend Michelle sent me a wonderful assortment of fresh seafood, with salmon, smoked salmon, crab and live mussels and clams. seafood.dec23 (2) Luckily a cookbook came with it to tell me what to do to keep them fresh. I vacuum sealed the salmon and put the mussels and clams over ice in the fridge.seafood.dec23 (1) Tonight we started our feast of these delicacies with cedar planked salmon–the best I have ever eaten, and steamed mussels. Wouldn’t it be nice to have Pikes Market in your backyard!

Tonight I also went to the last Christmas party of the year. The Danderands have been hosting this family party for more years than I have known them, but it started when their children were young and now their daughter has children, so it is a great tradition for folks of all ages. danderands (4)Their house rivals the old Osborne home with lights both front and back. danderands (2)

danderands (7)

danderands (10) Mike has been busy constructing and I got to see the new fire pit and seating area. Their backyard is amazing. danderands (9)

danderands (12) They had loads of food and some that were quite creative. danderands (3)

danderands (5)

danderands (6) but since I had fresh seafood to cook at home, we didn’t eat much.

While people often ask about recycling their poinsettia from year to year, here is one that is reblooming quite nicely. poinsettia revisited.dec.15. Mary moves it outside for the summer and then back in as it cools down. I think a good pruning job in the spring when it is moved outside might improve the shape. She also had flowering kale and cabbage that is already beginning to stretch or elongate prior to bolting–kale bolting.dec15. This usually doesn’t happen until spring–see what the warm weather is doing?!

And to add to your decorating repertoire here is another example sent in from Lucinda on inexpensive but elegant holiday decorating using a few candy canes and cuttings from the yard. canycane

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