Posts Tagged With: coffee


Jim and I paused to reflect yesterday on our fifth anniversary since we met face to face at a restaurant in Tracy, a half way point from where I live to where he was parked near Gilroy. Once we hit the road, I slowly gave up my newspaper and and now get my news on-line.


Mr. Smith went to Washington and gave his millions to create The Smithsonian, our  masterfully reflective Museum and Archive that covers every aspect of American life and beyond. Scientists, psychologists, researchers, and curators seek out what makes us tick and how it affects how we live. I get their magazine at home, but read it on-line as well. The picture above is what once was the “Loneliest” tree on the planet. Three hundred years old, with roots that reached 100 feet to the water table. An acacia that was used on maps in the 1930’s as a directional landmark and for many years before by word of mouth. It was rammed into by a (rumored) drunk driver in 1973 and killed. The trunk sits in the Smithsonian and a metal tree has replaced the famous Acacia.

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Jim and I are tea drinkers, but when I’m home, I drink one cup of coffee in the morning. Neuroscientist Steven Miller tells us that the best time to drink coffee, or any caffeine drink, is when our cortisol begins to dip, for most people about 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. in the morning and after 1:00 in the afternoon and after 6:30 at night.

The United Kingdom’s National Healthy Service claims their measurements were based upon when workers begin to tire and suggest coffee break  at 2:16 p.m. Rather precise, aren’t they? The afternoon drink, with a 15 minute nap,no longer, called the caffeine nap, is beneficial according to  LIFEHACKER. Hey good to know.

Smithsonian gives you Smart News, what is Trending Today, New research and Cool Finds.  Smithsonian is trustworthy, not controlled by any President or Congress. I love it.


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Some mornings you wake up and you are brain-dead. I tried to write my Christmas letter and all I could focus on was the accident and the aftermath. A close friend lost her husband Thursday. And, another friend’s grandson was murdered by his own daughter’s murderer, the husband/father. A serial killer on our road? Hard to believe.

Suddenly, I felt like I had no good cheer to offer this morning.  Gotta get a grip! Plus, it vexes me that I don’t have access to pictures I took and stored with my Motor Home computer, and stuff on this computer is not available from the Motor Home unless I carry a heavy computer back and forth. They were uploaded to Picasa, but I can’t figure out how to get them burned to a disk from Picasa.

I pressed a friend to teach me how to put pictures in a Christmas letter, so maybe I’ll hear from him today.  Yesterday, I put up some of the Christmas lights and have a living room full of boxes to decorate for Christmas. Not a card sent. Maybe today will be more productive and spirited. Put on the carols, have some mulled wine…hey, it is time to get into the spirit of Christmas.

Today, I’ll just post a couple of old pictures I like.

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I love this one of my brother warming his pizza on an iron. He was demonstrating how he did things in his younger bachelor days.

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This painting from the Florence Griswold School intrigues me because it has that I’m taking a picture of you while you are aiming at me, effect.

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And, this pen and ink drawing of a woman who seems just a bit suspicious of the viewers  motives.

Art heals, but I let the wood stove fire go out to remove the ashes and now I’m chilled. Gotta get a cup of coffee.



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The Angels-Murphys Rotary Club holds an all you can eat Shrimp Feed each year as a fund-raiser. I’ve missed the last four years since I’m usually back on the road by now. It was fun to go to the park, listen to the music, visit with friends, eat lots of shrimp and feel like I’m supporting a good cause at the same time.

My son breezed through this morning and asked me a question. “I see Rotary uses that little gear on their literature, so, what does it stand for, Rotary? I basically knew they were a fraternal, charitable organization. But his question stumped me.  I hadn’t given it much thought. I went to Wikipedia and learned that they stand for Service Above Self.  The cogged wheel symbolizes a rotating wheel  because the original founders rotated their meetings at each others houses. Rotary was so popular,  it grew  rapidly and steady meeting places are used by all Rotarians, now.  If you’d like to check out the link and read more:

The park is friendly and summer casual. Not many places can you dance bare foot.

Everyone was having a grand time including the band members:


I have a special spot in my heart for Rotary because they sent my youngest daughter to Egypt on a Scholarship after she graduated High School. Her experience there was life changing, meaningful and rewarding. I am ever thankful to this group,  as is she.

Another highlight for me, is visiting with friends like Ginger La Jeunesse.

Shelly and Gene Cervantes.  You never see this couple without big  smiles.

Cindy, whose daughter I had only met once, yet I’ve known Cindy for twenty years. (I’ve misplaced Cindy’s last name, somehow.)

And Matt, who owns a coffee roasting business, informed me he had given up drinking coffee. He said he doesn’t need a pick-me-up in the morning and he just got bored with drinking it. And, I’ve just started drinking coffee after 38 years without it. I’ve only had four cups of coffee, these past four mornings. I decided to do it after reading in my Medical newsletter how good coffee is for you. In moderation, no more than six cups a day.

And, I chatted for a while with Liz and Steve Milliaire, the winemakers I credit with getting the wine movement really moving in this area. Liz doesn’t make wine but she was chief promoter when they moved here to make wine for Bardon Stevenot in 1979. They produce wonderful wines under their own label as well.  Ahh! Time well spent is its own reward.



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Once in awhile I get a fun email from someone about products we used that kids of today have never seen nor heard of.  They are all in fun and include things like running boards, candy cigarettes, a vaporizer, penny postcards, an egg beater and so on.  What is more surprising is how many branded items we used that are still around from my own parents time such as Vicks Vaporub, Cloverine Salve, Teat Balm, Kelloggs Cereals, Kool Aid,  Henna,  Ivory Soap, Twenty Mule Team Borax to name a few.  And, then there is Arbuckles Coffee. I ran into it at Hubbell’s Trading Post several weeks back.

Up until the close of the Civil War, coffee was sold green. It had to be roasted on a wood stove or in a skillet over a campfire. One burned bean would ruin the whole batch. In 1865 the Arbuckle brothers patented a process for roasting coffee beans and coating them with an egg and sugar glaze to seal in the flavor and aroma.  An instant success, the coffee was shipped all over the country in wooden crates  one hundred, one pound packages,  to a crate. Especially appreciated by Western chuck wagon cooks faced with the task of keeping their hands supplied with plenty of hot coffee out on the range.  The Arbuckles, good marketers that they were, sweetened the deal by supplying coupons in each bag redeemable for razors, scissors,wedding rings and all manner of  desirable notions. And, each package of Arbuckles came with  a stick of peppermint candy.   When the cook would call  “Who wanta candy?”  Some of the toughest hands were known to vie for the opportunity of manning the coffee grinder in exchange for that little  sweet reward. I had never heard of Arbuckles coffee, but it was so popular in the Western United States, many people had no idea there was any other brand.

The docent at Hubble’s said she saw it the very first time in a western movie, Broken Trails.  

To each generation is some memorable product.

My kids remember Ipana Toothpaste because of the catchy tune that went with it. “Brusha, brusha, brusha, New Ipana Toothpaste, it’s better for your teee-eeth.”

And, I remember Super Suds from their radio ad.  A child who couldn’t pronounce his S’s sang the ditty:  “Tooper Tuds, Tooper Tuds, no better tuds than Tooper Tud-uh- uds.

Kinda crazy what we remember.

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