Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Popcorn (and other stuff)

I am obsessing about cooking and entertaining.  And cooking and having friends over. And cooking and baking chocolate chip cookies.  And cooking hosting book club for a brunch.  And.......
....well, it's all still a dream.

Our floor is 'getting there'.  It will  look so nice when it's done, but as of yesterday, it looked like this:

We made grilled cheese sandwiches on the grill last night.  And then we made popcorn on the grill.

Here is the Handyman shaking the popcorn on our bbq grill.  He is wearing a denim jacket, because  God hates spring in Northern Nevada and so it's still winter temps.  Brrrrrr!!!  (it's driving me crazy!!)

My children (three grown boys and a couple of daughter-in-laws) all think this popcorn tastes weird.  They are of the microwave popcorn generation.
It's actually the best popcorn ever!!

Old Fashioned Popcorn

a heavy pot
add some oil.  Just eyeball it.
add some popcorn.  Just eyeball it again
put the pot over the fire/heating element
shake until it pops and begins to push the top off
put in a big bowl
melt REAL butter and pour over the top
add salt to taste.

There you go.  That is my food post for the day.

So......maybe I'll talk about birds now.

Yes, birds.  I just got back from a weekend of bird watching.  Before you go 'uh, big nerd' and close this blog, let me tell you;  you need to expand your horizons.  I did. This was my first birding experience.  I've been a backyard birder for some time, but this year I went with my friends (who are experienced birders ) to the Spring Wings Festival in Fallon,  Nevada, as Mitzi is pointing out below.  And I had so much fun!!

We arrived on Friday at noon, for our 1st tour/class

Friday afternoon:  Stillwater shore birds
Friday night:  Rapture Rapture
Saturday morning:  Wood ducks
Saturday afternoon: Birding Hot spots
Sunday morning:  Carson Lake
Sunday noon:  Release of the Golden Eagle ( a rescue bird)

The Big Year, a birding book (or rather a book about birders) is being made into a movie.  A comedy staring Owen Wilson, Steve Martin and Jack Black.  I can't wait to see it.  But first....I have to read the book.

See?  Birding is fun!  And apparently funny!!  All I know is that I had a good time.   We went out to different areas in tour vans and saw all kinds of birds, had a presentor and there were a few presentations thru-out the day.
I do have to laugh to myself tho, being a brand new birder, these kinds of conversations made me laugh...
"look over there, is it? "
"I think it is."
"Look, look.....awwww, ahhh, ohhhh, there, there,  a long beaked curlew!!"

My birding friends.

Mitzi is the teacher's pet---actually she could lead a class all on her own. She knows all the stuff.   We can be sitting on my patio enjoying a summer evening meal and she will hear a bird and say,  "that's the Red Winged Black Bird."    or she will see a bird in flight and say, "that's a Barn Swallow."
She can identify birds by their song and their flight patterns. She is amazing!

Jolina is the studious note taker. She was writing down everything the tour guide said.  She was marking off every single bird we saw  (this is how I know we saw over 50 species---and I saw every single one of them too) and I am so glad that she was  keeping track!

Maris fed us and let us sleep in her house.  She and her husband were THE BEST HOSTS  ever.

I got to see a Marbled Godwit.  Mitzi said this was very exciting and that I was extremely lucky!

and seriously?  If you are a birder...look at that map...I was in Nevada, where the little yellow part is.  I REALLY WAS LUCKY to see the Marbled Godwit!  He was just migrating thru.

I do feel lucky.  Lucky to be able to have fun wherever I am.  And lucky to have friends who have fun wherever they are too.

So, if you can hang with me....here are some of the birds we saw:

The Avecet and the Black Necked Stilt

A little Barn Owl who had been shoved out his nest.
He was probably scared to death.

The female Wood Duck.
We went with the biologist. They keep stats on Wood Ducks.

We take her out of her box (Wood Ducks are cavity nesters, so they make wooden boxes for the ducks to nest in.  It's easier to study that way)

We check the wing span.

And measure her.

And we weigh them.  By sticking them head first in a plastic pop bottle  (soda, coke, whatever you call it.  I call it pop.)
It's  just for a moment and she won't fly away while they weigh her.

And then you just throw her in the air. Which is what I'm doing  here.  I was nervous to just throw her, but she just took off flying....
....which left the young biologist to check her eggs....

to make sure the babies are alive and developing and to know when they will hatch.

Just FYI--the Wood Duck population is down this year.  They are not sure why.

to be continued.....(at a later date)
(I don't want to bore you to death)
(I'll just drag it out over the next few days instead of getting it over in one shot)


Brenda said...

Your floor is gorgeous, or will be when it's done. I love it! I can imagine what you're going through not being able to cook/bake. I went through withdrawal when I was on my cruise. I started cooking the day I got home. Sick! :o)

bermudaonion said...

You have such fun friends! By the way, I call them soft drinks.

Karen said...

So, popcorn is what a food blogger writes about while her kitchen is torn up, huh? LOL Love the tile - it'll be so nice when it's finished. Seems that the Marbled Godwit is a breeding resident up here. I'll have to keep my eyes open for them around the water. It's nice to be with someone who can identify all these birds. Looks like you had a great time!

~Jess said...

I'm loving the floor!

I'll have to have a talk with your one daughter in law about REAL popcorn....it's soooo much better on the stove than in a microwave.

You got some fantastic bird pictures!

Email me if you would like access to my blog
jess.white05 at gmail dot com

Sadie said...

haha Jess what makes you think that one daughter in law is me??

Okay it is not a fan give me the microwave stuff.

Heather @girlichef said...

Birding sounds pretty cool, actually...and that owl is beautiful. And I think "freshly" popped popcorn is THE best...pure popcorn no greasy microwave oil. ;)

Jolina said...

Thanks Debbie for that wonderful blog about our trip. No words about the "adventure" yet, but I expect it!! It was so much fun and you added so much to the weekend. So glad you went!!

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