Thursday, August 8, 2013

I{HEART}ART}: Inspiration: Sierra Creatures

I have been here at Tahoe for nearly two weeks. From our deck, the noisy Jay squawks on and on, and occasionally gets brave and hops about the porch. Squirrels and chipmunks bustle about, around the trees. 
I have a confession...I didn’t pack my art supplies. This is not like me, because I feel a little lost without my brushes at hand.  But, life was busy and crazy before we left and feeling the need to pack light, I thought I’d be ok without. Ah, no. The problem is that I am on the west shore of Lake Tahoe...there is not a Blick Art, Aaron Bros., Michael’s, not even a local art supply that I could find. The closest is in Reno or Carson, both an hour away. I’m not doing that. So, I found a few little art supplies in the pharmacy (LOL)- poster board, glue, small paint set, and terribly cheap brushes. I'm sure all of these were designed for elementary school kids. Good enough for a little fun with mixed medium, paint, and collage. So above, i'm just having a little fun...  

JOURNEY: Lake Tahoe

I look forward to this all year...two weeks in the High Sierra, on the west shore of Lake Tahoe. It is so very restful. This is in part because I am at home here. We have rented the same spot on the lake since I was a little girl. The familiarity fills me with ease; the beauty fills me with awe; the fresh pine, lake air is sweet and fragrant. After a few days, my antsy-need-to go-and-do settles down and I feel the freedom to sit and soak it all in. Better yet, is to take it in from the water, on the boat. The lake, mountains, trees, etc. are all wonderful, but the best part is enjoying it with those I love.

Several years ago, James and I restored an Old Town wooden canoe. We love shoreline cruises in the morning and evening when the lake gets calm and glassy. A few days ago, we packed up a couple of cinnamon rolls and thermos of coffee for a picnic in the canoe. So different from the speed boat, the canoe is slow and quiet. It is amazing to gaze down into Tahoe’s exceptionally clear water. The colors are fantastic...shades ranging from emerald, teal, and turquoise, to deep ultra-marine and cobalt. I can’t get enough. This particular morning, we watched a sea plane circle several times to plot out his landing, and quietly spied an exquisite wooden Hacker-Craft speed off from one of the gorgeous estates lining the shore. We sat quietly talking, watching the birds and boats, fingers lightly splashing the cool waters, sipping our coffee and nibbling on decadent cinnamon rolls. A rare and memorable morning indeed.

I love restaurant recommendations from friends when visiting somewhere here are a few of my favorites for future reference:
Sunnyside: quintessential Tahoe, deck on the lake (I had dinner there the night I got engaged 15 years ago, so it is near and dear to my heart).  I really like the more casual, less expensive, bar side menu.
Fire Sign Cafe:  great outdoor deck in a wooded setting, with the best breakfast in the world, seriously.
West Shore Cafe: great deck on the lake, upscale menu items...fantastic!
Garwoods:  beautiful north shore deck, on the lake.  Go for their signature rum punch slushy on Wednesdays when they are 1/2 price.  Then, take a stroll over to the big warehouse of Sierra Boat Co. to see some of the beautiful wooden boats Lake Tahoe is famous for.
The Bridgetender:  on the Truckee River, burgers, brew, and lots of charm.
Christy Hill:  If you want an excellent dinner out with fabulous lake views, this is the spot.
Tahoe House:  Great homemade pastries and coffees.  Worth the wait in line.

For more Tahoe favorites, click here for a previous post:

RECIPE: Cinnamon Rolls, doctored

OK, I’ll be honest...I was skeptical about Pillsbury cinnamon rolls. But then I tasted these rolls, deliciously doctored up, and I’m a fan! This recipe is from our cousin Kathy. My mom made this for all of us on vacation, a little splurge. 
Easy and delicious.

You probably aren't going canoeing with them, but I do recommend packing up a thermos of coffee and cinnamon rolls and having an early morning picnic somewhere- park, trail, beach, etc.

2 refrigerated tubes Pillsbury Grands cinnamon rolls
Arrange in 9x13 pan, 4 down center and 3 on each side
Whisk together 1 cup brown sugar and 1 cup heavy whipping cream
Pour over rolls
Bake 35 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven
Cool 10 minutes in pan, then loosen edges with a knife and turn pan upside down onto a platter.
Serve warm and enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Your ''pharmacy' art is better than I could do with the best set of brushes,canvas & the likes. Love the blue bird! And Tahoe ahh... looks amazing! Thanks for sharing all the beautiful photos. Canoeing in an old restored beauty sipping on hot coffee & melting cinammin rolls... Heaven. I want to join right now. What a special family traction. Looks like your all having the best time! XO Kristin