The Blood Moon

24ba6f10942df6cbc89d29692b4b05b2

Wait!

Don’t go to bed yet-please read this quick post first!

I was hoping to get it up earlier, but you know how that goes.

Hopefully you peeps on the East Coast haven’t called it a night yet…

Here’s the deal; set your alarm for 3:oo am (EST) this morning if you’d like to witness the “Blood Moon” that’s going to occur.

They say North America will have a front row seat so time your alarms accordingly.

“The phenomenon in which the moon is completely covered by the earth’s umbral shadow for four eclipses in a row, as opposed to only partial eclipses that fall in the outer penumbra. But rather than succumbing to complete darkness, the moon will glow red as it receives the refracted light that spills over the Earth’s circumference.” (NBC news)

I do believe I witnessed a “Blood Moon” a couple of years ago in Sun Valley, where one can view celestial  shenanigans like nobody’s business. The night skies of Idaho are a stargazer’s dream.

 Actually, Santa Barbara is not too shabby in that department either, especially here in Montecito where there are no street lights and night landscape lighting is frowned upon. :-(

Video explaining the “Blood Moon”

(or a “Tetrad” as those of us in the ‘lunar know’ , er, know)

red moon , slimpaley.com

This is the one I saw in Sun Valley. Not a great shot as I took it with my very old iPhone but you get the idea. It was so cool! I kept trying to get everyone to come out and look at it, but no one was biting. I think there was a good movie on or perhaps a heated ping-pong game.

Plus I had to run back in before I got eaten by a bear.

blood orange  slimpaley.com

Speaking of eating…(how’s that for a segue?) it’s also Blood Orange Season.

blood orange tree , slimpaley.com

Our trees are producing abundantly this year so we’ve been getting pretty creative with these babies.

blood oranges slimpaley.com

Fresh Blood Orange juice by itself, though gorgeous to look at, is much too tart for my liking.

It’s better mixed with regular orange juice or another fruit juice that will give it some natural sweetness. Or vodka.

Or gin.

Tequila in a pinch.

blood orange water  slimpaley.com

I’ve also been squeezing the juice of just one or two blood oranges into my carafe of water every day. It makes me feel like I’m at a spa. I add a splash of Jack Rudy Small Batch Tonic Water-it’s delicious and makes the water swirl like antique glass.

blood oranges slimpaley.com

 

dried blood orange slices slimpaley.com

 I think I mentioned slicing and drying the blood oranges in the dehydrater relatively recently…or was that on Instagram? Do you follow me on Instagram?? It’s fun!

IMG_9876

They’re quite good and no doubt super good for you, but now we’ve discovered that they’re even waaaay better with the rinds cut off. Just little sweet & sour explosions of chewy flavour.

dried blood oranges, slimpaley.com

Eat your heart out Dale Chihuly!!

Chihuly-10 Glass sculpture by Dale Chihuly

dried sliced blood orange slimpaley.com

 Don’t look at my manicure

blood_orange_chicken_b1

Tomorrow night we are trying this recipe- I’ll let you know!

And this link will take you to many other fun ideas;

blood orange recipes

Bubbly Ginger Blood Orange Smoothie (recipe below)

20 Brightly Hued Ways to Eat Blood Oranges

blood orange tree  slimpaley.com

Happy Lunar gazing

xxSP

Post Script; later on tonight…

Blood Moon April 2014

It was very cool indeed!

~

Ice Capades

Perito Moreno Glacier slimpaley.com

The Perito Moreno Glacier, Argentina

PeritoMorenoglacier slimpaley.comSo. It’s bloody freezing everywhere, isn’t it? Honestly, I’m usually loathe to touch on the subject of global warming-not even vaguely my area of expertise (still actively searching for that) but who knew “warming” would translate to the coldest winter ever?!  My older son lives in NY, so I worry. He’s thin. Well, truth be told, my younger son lives in California and I worry. He’s tall. I’m my mother’s daughter-that’s my job.

Meanwhile, I’m finally, semi-partially-settled back into normalcy since returning from our family’s South American holiday. It was a wild ride. From 92 degrees with 110% humidity in Buenos Aires to strapping on crampons and glacier hiking in Patagonia, I felt like a contestant in “The Amazing Race”-without all the histrionics of course.

OK, there was the slight to medium-sized hissy fit I threw when my iPhone slid out of my pocket and down a deep crevasse on the glacier…

the glacier that ate my iPhone

But who could blame me?! It was brand new…wa wa. I hadn’t bought a new phone in a really long time (I’m one of those “but what if a new one comes out right after I buy the new one?”) I didn’t get insurance because I never lose or break things, wa wa.

Let’s just say it took me several minutes to recover.

Perito Moreno glacier, Patagonia slimpaley.com

But back to Perito Moreno.

The Eolo hotel, El Calafate, Argentina

We stayed at a most charming hotel, “The Eolo” located on a 10,000 acre ranch aprox. 25 minutes outside of the small town of El Calafate. From there, we drove to Los Glaciares National Park and boarded a small ferry to a cove left of the glacier.

Glaciares National Park  Slimpaley.com

There are a few small structures where you may picnic sheltered from the wind and watch ice move…which it does at a rate I’m forgetting, but a lot faster than you’d think. Just in the short space of time we were there, we saw a major caving off the front of the glacier, a mighty cracking noise followed by a tremendous boom and then startling silence.

Perito Moreno Glacier, slimpaley.com

The Perito Moreno Glacier is over 19 miles long and almost a 100 sq. miles in total. The average height above water is 270 ft, with depths reaching 550 ft. Part of an ice field that is the 3rd largest source of the world’s fresh water, it’s also one of only 3 Patagonian glaciers that is actually growing. Experts aren’t quite sure why.

Perito Moreno glacier, slimpaley.com

PeritoMorenoglacier slimpaley.com

Hiking to the glacier is a startling reminder of how even the wreckage of Mother Nature can be starkly beautiful

slimpaley.com

Do you see those tiny black dots on the glacier? It’s the group of hikers ahead of us.

As the photos attest, it wasn’t the most ideal of weather conditions, but we did get lucky in that it wasn’t windy.

PeritoMorenoglacier

This was the last stop, where the guides helped you put on your crampons before climbing onto the glacier. There was also a bin full of soaking wet gloves in case you didn’t bring any. They didn’t mention the gloves were “left” & “right”   Just saying :-(

And off we went…

cramponing glacier slimpaley.com

Our fellow Amazing Race contestants

hiking the glacier slimpaley.com

Some people just know how to pack.

Whatever.

glacier hiking slimpaley.com

It really wasn’t that scary, but once and awhile you had to jump over stuff like this and imagine what it might be like if you slipped.glacier crevasse, slimpaley.com

This is the crevasse I passed through just before “The…INCIDENT” as my family likes to refer to it.

glacier slimpaley.com

As the entire trip had been conceived and planned by my husband, I hadn’t any preconceived notions of what to expect. I just let the entire experience roll over me and I must say it was exhilarating.

Especially when towards the end, we crested this peak and what to my iPhone-less eyes did appear…

Glacier Bar slimpaley.com

A COCKTAIL BAR!!!

Ice Bar , slimpaley.com

Whiskey…with plenty of  very fresh ice

whiskey on the rocks slimpaley.com

Our guides divvying  up our rewards

Whiskey on ice , slimpaley.com

Seriously-I don’t even drink whiskey but Mama was so happy to have her nice brown drink.

I removed my mouldy second left glove, toasted Ernest Shackleton and all the courageous Antarctic explorers who had gone before me…

and thanked my lucky stars I was getting back onto a warm boat and not crawling into a dank seal-skin sleeping bag in a wind torn tent for the next year and a half.

Phone schmone.

And you know…whiskey isn’t really that bad

e74b56806d318858672276dbdbf69abb

Stay warm, cozy and open to adventure.

xx SP

For an icy blast from the past, click here

~

Breaking With Tradition

Christmas tree Park Hyatt, Buenos Aires slimpaley.com

 I think it would be safe to say I’m not that big on change, especially at this time of year.  Our family always follows the same tradition for Christmas. Big, bushy tree, same decades-old ornaments, freshly sliced & dried oranges hanging amidst flickering candle light bulbs and that Angel with Attitude who unfailingly gives me grief with her wonky ways atop the tree (I swear she’s a midnight drinker) We’re blessed to live in a home that lends itself to traditional east coast Christmas decor, despite living in Southern California so it’s something I’ve really come to enjoy. Occasionally my husband or sons request brightly coloured lights (and believe me, in my weaker moments the temptation to string lights that don’t need to be attached individually, burn out every few days or point straight up is tempting) but I just…could…never…do it.

Until this year.

metal and glass Christmas tree

This year was a Big One for my husband and so guess what-

I let him choose what he wanted for Christmas.

I know. What a wife. Speaking of angels :-)

So, here we are in South America!

Patagonia, to be precise.

(The silver, glass & marble tree is in the Park Hyatt Hotel in Buenos Aires but more on B.A. in another post)

Now a family excursion to Patagonia must be organized and booked a long time in advance. A year in fact. Believe it or not, in this ever broadening era of globalization, even the last edge of the world before Antarctica is a real hot spot.

Did I ever expect I’d be having shoulder surgery 2 months prior to our departure? Hell no, but canceling was definitely not an option ( I’d canceled once before…not such an angel, truth be told :-(  I was scared to break with tradition!)

And the fact that I literally couldn’t do any Christmas decorating or entertaining ended up working perfectly (and guilt-free) into our original travel plans. The tipsy angel stayed in the attic, the stair bannisters remained nude as can be and we’ve had a pretty wild adventure here with nary a dried orange slice in sight.

blackboard slimpaley.com

The hotel blackboard posting all the daily activities. Patagonia obviously attracts a very outdoorsy type of clientele.

No jokes, please.

Of course my physical abilities were somewhat more limited than usual, but I could certainly hike…

slimpaley.com

Enjoy the views, lift a knife & fork and a glass or two.

Vegetarians should now skip the next couple of photos.

lamb roast slimpaley.com

Christmas Day Lunch was, again, something completely different for us; lamb roasted at a local working ranch in Chile.

Instagram slimpaley.com

FYI-the wines in Argentina and Chile are DELICIOUS (that’s not my husband beside me, just in case you were wondering)

Patagonia , slimpaley.com

The scenery is utterly breathtaking.

I have so many more things to share with you, but I’m calling it a night here, it’s late (it stays light until almost 11pm!) and the day begins bright and early tomorrow.

glacier, Patagonia slimpaley.com

Enjoy these last few days of 2013!!

XXSP

~

PS. can anyone tell me if they are seeing unwanted ads, or any ads for that matter at the bottom of my posts? Thanks!

Oh #$&^*%(#… It’s December!!

Screen Shot 2013-12-08 at 3.20.41 PM

Wait

Does the calendar say December 8th already??

et moi, without a single post up yet for the month?.

I guess that old kidnapping story won’t fly again.

Screen Shot 2013-12-08 at 12.01.26 PM

or  “the dog ate my computer” excuse.

To tell the truth, the days have flown by and I’m as surprised as anyone that Christmas is just a little more than two weeks away.

I’m out of my sling, driving again and continuing physical therapy but, with no offense (my therapist is adorable) the process alternates between being boring, guilt provoking and painful (insert your old relationship’s name here)

The upside is I’ve found I have a ton of company. I’ve joined a ‘Torn Rotator Cuff Society’ where we all give secret “Live Long and Prosper” salutes, albeit with awkwardly hunched-up shoulders.

Christmas will be different in our home this year. I’m not decorating in our traditional fashion, so unfortunately, I won’t have my usual Christmas fare to share. It would be impossible for me to get on a ladder to dress the tree. Let’s get real, I still can’t even tie up my hair.

OK, let’s get really real, did I mention I gained 10 lbs? NO JOKE, therefore not at all funny so stop laughing!

Who would imagine that months of no exercise, a steady diet of comfort food and a newly acquired penchant for red wine would be so deleterious??

But I don’t really like to talk about weight, diets and yucky things so we’ll leave that there.

~

sunset.slimpaley.com

December sunset in Santa Barbara

Changes are afoot for ‘Slim Paley’. Good changes (hopefully)

After 4 years it’s time.

roses.slimpaley.com

Somebody forgot to tell my roses it was December.

I’ll be tinkering with my entire format and design, so please bear with me in the following weeks.  I need to address issues such as my crowding columns and “Category Cloud” disappearance.

Let’s face it-”Slim” needs a lift

I’d like to return to shorter, more frequent posts and possibly include some short videos too.

2014 Baby!!

In the meantime, please do visit my past December posts in the Archives,

as well as The Popular Kids,

and my Travel tab which I’ve been updating slowly but surely.

More new travel coming soon!

~

Keep your cool in the crowds, don’t let the holidays make you crazy, and remember…

Christmasshopping.slimpaley.com

to breathe.

And feel free to comment with any great holiday tips for us :-)

Happy December!!

~

Dog photo via Pinterest

Stag Party

alisa1

A post about horns and long pointy parts of wild animals.

Hopefully nothing offensive.

tumblr_mgsooontq51ridudvo1_1280

People seem to feel quite strongly about this subject, which is fine by me.

I like a healthy debate as long as it stays uber civilised…

and doesn’t shut down Congress.

(sorry, couldn’t resist)

bloodandchampagne4522Personally, I like antlers & horns used in interiors, and exteriors, for that matter.

I think they serve as an earthy connection to the great outdoors, as well as a primal link to the past.

I have little doubt that cavemen persons adorned their spaces with impressive, hard-won trophies.

metro-5-lgvia Erin Martin Design

Jacques Grange 4Jacques Grange

They also add a great sense of texture, depth, even humour, when artfully applied.

laughing goat At least he gets me :-)

You’ve probably already guessed over the years that I’m not of the ‘hunting’ persuasion. I don’t eat game and I wouldn’t know a deer from a stag or an elk from a bison if it were two ft. away from me.

I think I might even have pointed out a ‘mantalope’ in one of my finer moments in Africa.

Let’s just say if the nose is bright red, I’m betting reindeer.

That confession out of the way,

I do know that deers/stags and other forresty animals shed their antlers naturally in the wild, so there need not be any hunting involved, though I’m certainly not naive enough to assume this is always or even generally the case.

2c19979186cc183d488066a13783466e

toro-bull-head-jayson-homeA big faux bull from Jayson Home, Chicago.

winters-bone-with-skulls-fabric-upholstery

“Winter’s Bone” linen fabric available through Dering Hall (I love the brown colour-way but it wouldn’t come up)

bloodandchampagne4466Go real or go faux, it’s a human desire to celebrate the beauty of animals.

51386c949140af2909094f6a778add1a

and with so many of the faux antler and horn furnishings available now, it’s very difficult to tell they’re not in fact real.

Wonderful.

049bb80214d6c866880fd2115a404589

Picture

I have the most beautiful carved wood deer head I bought years ago from John Rosselli Antiques. It hangs in a prominent spot in our home in Sun Valley and I love it, and remembering the saga of how I got it from NY to Idaho (Two cars, a very awkward  plane trip and one intensely quiet husband)

Ahhh, the memories…

b9964920ae770d516a9d02141d875d8dBut antlers, horns & such need not be relegated to cabins and mountain homes by any means.

In fact I think the more unexpected the better.

spring3source unknown. Any idea??

b4ba6063f4d0d65335d5171601ed129cParty animal

Disc_Interiors_13_07_05Very cool, by Disc Interiors

Tracie-Ellis-House-Kyneton-Australia-04Tracie Ellis-House, Kyneton, Australia

19328dcf5a25f0b44dbf7f0fe1626675Here you get the effect with none of the dust!

sun valley, slimpaley.comMy bathroom in Sun Valley.

The antlers wear garlands of pine in the winter. They’re part of a Bavarian collection I bought many years ago.

haynes-roberts-10-xlnElle Decor

witt-1-lgErin Martin Design

tumblr_mogf93SpxI1ruxpd8o4_500

tumblr_mrxiqt4IXB1s03x0vo1_500Tumblr

witt-6-lgErin Martin Design

strip1

bloodandchampagne4544

LaurenCaron1002_smlThere’s a veritable stampede on the 4th floor of Bergdorf’s right now, including fabrics & accessories from Alessandra Branca’s new collection. I’ll be popping in to see it next week. Photo via 4thFloorWalkup

 and if you’re utterly, adamantly, vehemently opposed to anything even vaguely resembling the real thing…

IMG_7230But still have a sense of humour about it…

there’s always this blow up trophy deer I saw in The Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art gift shop.

700_bicycle-taxidermy-by-regan-appleton-3

Or, cooler still, bicycle taxidermy for the cyclist in your life, by Regan Appleton via Remodelista HERE

tumblr_mngp8a0PCH1qb4qido1_500

Stag ring,  sorry no credit (via Tumblr)

Screen Shot 2013-10-05 at 7.38.32 PM

Brass Rams Horn table base, a pair, via Erin Martin Design

alisa4

antler hose holderlove this, via Remodelista

182677328605366131_VfQ17CWK_c

Alexander McQueen’s ethereal Stag Queen

~

Feeling just a step closer to Fall yet?!

2400776d83d3f1f6834a8318848423c1

PS. My posts are not updating in other blogger’s blog rolls. Is this happening to anyone else out there using WordPress??

Please say yes. I’m starting to get a complex.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Have a great rest of the weekend!

~

Crown of Horns photo by Paul de Luna for Mojeh magazine. Decorative headpiece by Ashley Lloyd