Thursday, July 24, 2008

Mexican Handcrafts~Artesanias Mexicana

In old San Pedro we visited an Artesania Fare with many crafts from all over Mexico. We saw a little of everything from handmade guitars, clothing, woven baskets, Jewelry to handmade Sweets. On the whole the day was such a sensory experience! There were fountains gurgling, birds chirping & soft pan flute music. With the tiny paper flags called Picados fluttering everywhere it was a day which should have been painted rather than simply capturing with film. The oppressive heat seemed to lift for a time as we strolled the tented walkways of crafts & foods. We even stopped for fresh fruit Ice Cream. *The only fly in the ointment so to speak was the crowd gathered to watch a body being removed across from the Artesanias Fare... Oh well. I did stop to ponder the fact that I had never seen such a sight while having ice cream!! Life in Mexico~take the good with the bad!

True Artesanias in Mexico are handmade by master of their crafts & traditions handed down in the same families from one generation to the next.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Summertime eats!

When company arrives South of the Border we try new things & dine on local flavors. This week we had an opportunity to try about 8 new taco flavors @ Tresa Arami's house. Her friend & neighbor served us all savory Mexican flavors from her new Catering menu. I believe my daughter was the first one to try each unique taco flavor. We also cooked some simple foods at home which left us time to visit, shop & sight see! Our current favorite is a Spicy Potato Pancake which is an adaptation from an Indian dish.

Spicy Potato Pancakes
3 white potatoes, boiled whole in jackets
3 Tbsp. onion diced
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded & diced
3 Tbsp. Cilantro chopped
Salt & Pepper to taste
Olive Oil 2-3 Tbsp.
Grate up the potatoes, mix in all of the ingredients by hand & form small 2 1/2-3 inch cakes. Chill the potato cakes 30 min. Quickly brown on each side on medium heat in skillet with Olive Oil. Serve immediately.

Summertime Pineapple Salad
1/2 Pineapple, cored & diced
1 med. Cucumber, seeded & diced
1 med. Mango, seeded & diced
1 Lime, juiced
1 Tbsp. Chili flakes
3 Tbsp. loosely chopped Cilantro
Toss together, chill & serve.

**FYI~did you know that when you cut up that next pineapple you can plant the top & eventually have another pineapple? Pineapples are quite simply giving back when you plant that top!

Friday, July 18, 2008

A Daughter visit~

Life is fleeting, years rush past....
and little girls grow up so fast!

Visits with our girls are rather jealously controled for the precious time we have with them here South of the Border. This daughter trip we did the normal touristy things & relaxed as well as visited with a few friends. Jackie found out, yes we do have decent Italian food in Mexico, you can totally avoid strange people you meet on the airplane & if you think it's hot in Texas in July just check the weather in Mexico!!!

Some daughter visits we even get a few projects accomplished & "Off our List"! This trip the Memory Quilt was finished & I can finally say I am rid of that box of Tee-shirts which were cluttering up my linen closet!!! Miracles do happen~

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Rains finally & Recycling here in the Colonia!

Several stormy days have left normally crazy driving a little wilder than normal here South of the Border!

The drought may have decreased in the Monterrey area this week after the 10+ inches of rainfall. *The drought has been so severe in Northern Mexico as to force the shy Mexican Black Bear from the mountains into residential areas of Monterrey. Since Friday we have had almost nonstop rain. Some local totals are more but here in Santiago it has been a welcome relief with the rainfall adding much needed water back into the springs & rivers.

Finally, there will be curbside recycling in our Colonia! Not a new concept back in the states by any means. On our first day of "Reciclaje" I didn't see anyone else with glass, plastics & paper at the curbside but I'm trying to lead the example. (With so much recycled this week our trash output is very small.) There seem to be more pressing issues Mexico has to deal with but with flash floods & rains washing toxins & garbage into local streams, rivers & eventually into the Gulf of Mexico... it's a matter long overdue!

* More on the Black Bear story:,21985,23845731-5005961,00.html

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Thinking of home! Happy 4th, Wherever you are:)

Leaving Texas is always bittersweet. After a recent trip home I am still thinking of family, friends & home. I'm happy to be there & while the time is precious, it ends all too fast. We enjoy every single moment we spend with our family. The only thing that makes returning to Mexico a little easier are the friendships we have established South of the Border. Life in the Ex Patriot community is fraught with moves & goodbyes but when we do establish friendships they have a certain resilience & strength. It's truly the Carpe Diem thought of seizing the moment & living in the present which helps me along.

What's not to miss? We always miss our girls mucho!

I can't imagine life here without friends to share the joys & those little daily aggravations! There are plenty of those but what is life without those grains of sand rubbing us the wrong way now & again? This 4th of July, I'll miss those fireworks & BBQ ~ living somewhere else on Independence day makes me wax poetic & think of home. So, keep those sparklers lit, the beer cold & the BBQ pits stoked! We're thinking of you! Happy 4th of July & God bless Old Glory & long may it wave!

Laughter & Friends!
... I am thankful for laughter, except when milk comes out of my nose. ~Woody Allen