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Saturday, October 29, 2016

Catalina Island Getaway

The Pavilion Hote

Many Californians, like me, have said, "Some day I want to go to Catalina Island." That some day came for Everett and me this week. We spent three relaxing days and nights at a lush green garden hotel in Avalon on a Sports Leisure tour.

The two story Pavilion Hotel in the heart of Avalon on the bay has rooms scattered through a lush green garden providing privacy and the illusion of having your own private patio. A fire-pit, bay front wine bar, complementary wine and cheese parties and continental breakfast make this a truly tranquil place to let go of worry and cares.

Chewing gum magnate, William Wrigley bought the island in 1919. He brought his baseball team, the Chicago Cubs to the island for spring training. The film industry discovered the island in the 1930's. A herd of bison roam the hills. Fourteen of them were brought to Catalina in 1924 by a film crew which left them to fend for themselves after the film ended. The Wrigleys'  gave more than 42000 acres of the island to the Catalina Conservancy.

On Monday we boarded an old bus which took us on the Inland Island Motor Tour. It was a wild ride on a mostly one-way road to the Conservancy airport at the summit. We had a wonderfully memorable driver named Freddie. He had lived on the island since he was a young boy. He loved it and his enthusiasm was contagious. We saw a bison up close, something Frankie said seldom happens.

The third day we toured the fabulous Casino. The twelve story circular building, built in 1929 has a huge theater and a 20,000 square-foot ballroom. Casino is an Italian word for "gathering place.' No gambling in this casino.

 Later that day we took a ride in an observation submarine where we saw fish large and small in their habitat. On the fourth day we boarded the ferry late in the morning headed home. We got home about 10 o'clock, tired but with many treasured new memories.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Talented Chefs-Part 2

In my last blog I told you about talented chefs we found in unexpected places. It turns out Kalie Glass, the chef at Adobe Resort grew up in Yachats. His father, Jerry Glass was the chef at Adobe Resort for twenty years. He retired in 2009. When Kalie was sixteen, he began working for his father, He started in prep work, then moved on to line cook. Next, he became sous chef for his father. After ten years he became chef. He married a year ago. He and his wife have their first child.

Resort manager, Anthony Muirhead knows how lucky they are to have such a talented young chef. Anthony's background is similar to Kalie's. His father got him into the resort business. He bounced around for ten or eleven years before ending up as general manager at the Adobe Resort. He, too, grew up in Yachats. Two young men who help make Yachats Adobe Resort my favorite getaway.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Talented Chefs in Unexpected Places

Elva and Everett at Lord Bennetts

While traveling, café food can get tiresome. We often find the same unattractive choices: garden salad with wilted lettuce with a few cherry tomatoes on top, soup of the day which can be very salty; chicken or turkey sandwiches or maybe when we are daring, hamburgers.

On our Oregon trip our first big surprise came in Bandon, a little coastal town. We ate dinner at Lord Bennetts, next to the Sunset Motel on Beach Loop Drive. Service was excellent and the food was gourmet. We chose nut encrusted halibut which was beautifully presented and taste-perfect. Everett had green salad with crisp field fresh lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, and even fresh raisins served with house made dressing. The house Chardonnay came from 14 Hands Winery, Columbia Valley, Washington. The chef, Rich Iverson and the server, a young man named Charlie O'Neill did a great job.

Three years ago we stayed at the Adobe Resorts at Yatchats. We liked it so much, we vowed we would return some day when we could stay longer than one night. I didn't remember much about the food and food service. This time we found the restaurant outstanding and affordable. Most of the servers are young people from the area well trained, attentive, and easy to talk to.

We arrived on a Sunday just in time for Sunday brunch. I have been to many Sunday brunches. For a small restaurant this was one of the best. Everything was attractively presented and beautifully prepared. An example: three kinds of deviled eggs on a three tiered serving dish. The scrambled eggs, steaming hot and smoothly blended with cheese made me want to go back for more. The meat carver carved the perfectly cooked ham and prime rib into slices just the right size. It was an impeccable brunch and immediately got my attention.

I decided to find out more about the chef before we left. In my next blog I will tell you what I found out.

Friday, August 19, 2016


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Update Your Perception about Relationship

Partners in Change

What is your perception about relationship? What are your expectations? These are important questions. When you and your partner understand relationship provides the opportunity to learn, grow and mature, you will see relationship in a new way. You will no longer believe that if your partner would change, you could have the relationship you have always dreamed of having. You will be looking for ways YOU can change and grow. You will look for a partner who is willing to learn and grow as well.

Relationship is difficult for everyone! Everyone has disagreements, misunderstandings, periods of feeling unloved. We are all unique and different from each other. A realistic approach to relationship
includes looking for a partner interested in learning, growing and changing with you as you both mature. You will share what you are learning. You will encourage each other and focus on each other's strengths. You will share growth, appreciation and wonder. That is what makes love grow.


Monday, August 8, 2016

Hitting the Jackpot on the Oregon Coast

The ocean 100 feet outside our bedroom window
If you love the ocean like we do, you can find your perfect getaway place along the Oregon coast. We rediscovered ours this week. Three years ago we drove down the Oregon coast returning from visiting friends who live at Lake Bay, Washington near Gig Harbor. We stayed at Seaside the first night, Yachats the second night and Brookings the third night, all without reservations. I wrote blogs about all three which you can look up by checking "older blogs" at the end of the most recent blogs.

All of those places were wonderful , but our stay at Yachats made me vow to come back when we could stay longer. We selected a week at the end of July, rearranged obligations and appointments and planned our trip. We decided to make reservations, because we were traveling on a weekend. That turned out to be a good decision, because a big country music festival was scheduled on the coast south of Bandon that weekend. Ten thousand people expected to attend.

We decided to spend two nights at Yachats. We had a room on the third floor just one hundred feet from the ocean. The ocean's rthymic beating against the waves growing louder at high tide and getting softer and dimmer at low tide soothed us into deep healing sleep. That first night the Adobe Resort miraculously became our favorite getaway place surpassing our decades long favorite, the Sea Ranch. A big bonus is an affordable restaurant not more than fifty feet from the water with windows all around and gourmet food. After the first night we made arrangements to add another night to our stay. We had to change rooms the third night, but the new room was just as lovely as the first one had been.

A beautiful mile long trail beside the ocean ends at a gorgeous large white sand beach. Several vacation apartments and motels access the trail, The Fireside Motel, Overleaf Lodge and Spa, as well as the Adobe Resort. I can't guarantee good weather, but we have had beautiful weather this year and when we were on the Oregon coast three years ago. We feel like we have hit the jackpot. I wish you the same kind of luck.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Sixty-one Years!

Was This the Best One Yet at Sea Ranch?
We have celebrated many anniversaries at Sea Ranch and every time they have seemed like the best one yet. The sixty-first anniversary visit was no different. We both love the ocean. We can no longer walk the two plus miles to our favorite sit-down log, but we walked to our favorite bay . Just off the trail, we walked to our secret place. It opens to a beautiful hidden view of the ocean framed by heavy green growth. We couldn't climb down to the edge like we used to do, because neither of us trust our sense of balance. We sat on the hard ground at the approach between the trees and enjoyed the sound and narrowed view of the ocean.

Five or six years ago our favorite room at Sea Ranch became unaffordable. Our 56th anniversary was the last anniversary we celebrated there. This year we decided to see if our room was available on lower cost week days. It was. We booked it for two full days and three nights. From start to finish it was everything we fantasized and hoped for.  When we reached the coast south of Bodega Bay a sparkling blue ocean bathed in brilliant sunshine greeted us. Driving curvy Highway One up the cliffs past the little town of Jenner felt wonderfully familiar. We found a bottle of Champaign waiting for us in room ten. The room had been upgraded. Still no television, clocks or telephone, but elegant and uniquely rustic. Instead of telling each other our stories as the sun set each night, we reminisced and talked about stories we now share. Stories about the red fox we had seen one night and the day we saw a rabbit come running out of the woods followed by a coyote. He jumped into the river and swam to the other side evading the coyote. Not long after that a news story reported President Carter had seen a rabbit swimming. When the reporters joked about it, we knew the president was telling the truth.

We have seen a seal give birth, an osprey catch a fish, a big buck lead his harem of seven does  proudly across the field in front of us. We have more stories together now than we had alone before we met. We both do remember and that is another blessing after sixty-one years! Three days of sunshine and balmy weather while people at home were enduring one hundred plus temperatures. If this anniversary was not the best one yet, it certainly came close!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Return to Wally's Hot Springs

     We left the Sacramento area when the weather man was predicting the first hot week of late spring. We have a timeshare at Wally's Hot Springs near Genoa, Nevada. We never tire of going to this wonderfully rural place where we can watch deer, geese, cows, and other animals birth and grow their young. This week the mild weather dominated conversations.

     Time has passed and our ageing has accelerated. In the past we enjoyed fishing at nearby lakes and streams, hiking on numerous mountain  trails and playing tennis. Now sitting in the hot mineral water pools every morning is high on our to do list. We bring books to read and writing projects. The
Flamingo Casino in nearby Carson City has wonderful champagne brunches on Saturdays and Sundays. People who can get in and out of a casino without wasting money on tight machines can enjoy the brunch.

     A walking path from Wally's leads to Genoa, the first stage coach stop in Nevada. A beautiful little park, located in the center of town features concerts in the summer. The last weekend in September every year, rows of craft vendors line every street, the park, and even fields. This craft fair called, "The Candy Dance Festival" grew from a small money raising project by townspeople to an event that brings thousands of people to Genoa in September. Ladies of the community spend weeks making fudge and divinity to sell. There is still a dance held on Saturday night.

    The tiny community church is one of the delightful places we discovered from local people sharing a hot tub with us one Sunday. The service starts at 10 o'clock Sunday mornings, so we had time to get
ready and go after leaving the spa. We have gone back every Sunday we have visited the area. Each time loving members and visitors fill the pews of the church. Getaways like this become a home away from home and do wonders for relationships.


Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Surprised by Joy

Joy at a daughter's wedding
Joy comes in many forms: feeling free of addiction after months of failed attempts to break the chains, welcoming a dearly loved family member back after a long absence, skin touching skin with a loving spouse, having a purpose, seeing a new grandchild for the first time. In marriage, joy comes off and on, deepening with passing years as each partner learns to let go of fear and a need to change the other.

Greet each day in wonder. Expectations blind us from seeing the beauty of each other. What can I learn today about the amazing complexity of who I am and who my lover is? This is a lifetime challenge.

I have recently finished reading C.S. Lewis's book Surprised by Joy for the second time. I read it the first time many years ago. Interestingly, what I got out of it this time was different. Joy does not come from seeking it. It comes as a surprise when we are able to finally discover the dimension of the spiritual part of ourselves. Letting go of expectations and opening up to beautiful differences between my self and those around me. Soul mates cannot find joy if they lose their own identity. It comes when we recognize and affirm the beauty in each other without comparison, expectations, and fear.

For more: get Elva's book: "Becoming Soul Mates". Order it from Amazon or at

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Who Did You Choose to Love?

Do you really know that person who sits across the dinner table day after day? Expectations make us blind to the gift of the person with whom we have chosen to spend our lives. There is no way life is supposed to be. There is only life.

As years go by, I realize some of my husband's wonderful strengths become lost because I am so focused on what he should do or be. I am reinforcing his own focus on his weaknesses. We all have weaknesses and strengths. If we focus on the strengths we have twice as many as we have alone. Often each of us has the strengths that are our partner's weaknesses. Wow!  If we focus on each other's strengths we have twice as many as we had alone.

Focus on the gift your partner is rather than the one you thought you wanted. Recognize the unimaginable challenge and opportunity to become more and more mature in faith, in love, and in joy. Embrace that opportunity to grow by accepting and learning from each other. Understand that relationship is the therapeutic process that can lead to satisfying maturity.

For more help order "BECOMING SOUL MATES" by Elva Anson at Amazon or .