Friday, November 4, 2011

A wonderful Halloween weekend

**************WARNING this is a picture heavy post***************

I had a great time this weekend. I hung out with friends from out-of-town on Sunday.
We went to the Old San Luis Rey mission in Oceanside for a Dia De Los Muertos festival.
I had not been there in more years than I can count.
That day I realized that I am sitting in the midst of a beautiful and culturally diverse community that I have not utilized for many years. Lucky me and yet, stupid me, for not checking things out sooner.
With Madi growing and learning this is not the time to be remiss on this fact, but to pay attention to the treasure amongst my place of habitat.
I am always amazed at  how much more it means to me at my age than when I visited as a child.
This beautiful lady posed with children and adults in 90 degree weather.
The costume was gorgeous and she looked like a painting or drawing come to life.
I loved this and with the Mission behind her it was amazing.
The Dia De los Muertos Festival  was amazing. With food, yay!
I ate pork and cheese pupusas with curtido and salsa roja, from El Salvador. Recipe links in the titles. I did blend the salsa roja with a little water and then cook again adding salt and pepper, when cooler stirring in the cilantro to make it more like the traditional sauces I have had.

A pupusa is a stuffed corn dumpling or flat bread of sorts served with cabbage slaw(curtido) and red sauce(salsa roja). This is my new favorite thing to eat and I found a great recipe online, above links, totally gluten-free. I have my Sandy Camp committee and San Diego Guild  member, Pat, to thank for this wonderful introduction to Pupusas. She is so kind to always look out for me and my choice to eat gluten-free.
I made it with masa harina but now I want to learn how to make fresh masa because the difference in taste is amazing. Still very good with the corn flour(masa harina) but a 100 times better with fresh masa.
 There were also many Spanish and Mexican crafts and vendors, a car show, music, dancing, and beautiful colors everywhere. I want to go back next year and spend the whole there. A couple of hours is in no way enough for all the sights and sounds.

This mission is beautiful and well-kept, I have to go back and take Madi for a tour, there is all kinds of history there.
This is one.
Old adobe bricks.

Commemorative plaque1.
I didn't have time to stop and really read and take pictures and ask questions because we were on the way out to Encinitas to meet others for a coffee at Swami's.
Commemorative plaque2

Commemorative plaque3

Commemorative plaque4

I believe I made the pictures bigger for the plaques so you can click on them to read them.

This was right next to my car when we were leaving.

The Lavanderia (the laundry; the laundromat).
Loved the old adobe archway, it was very inviting, on a schedule, snapped more pics. I am going back to see this.
  Some folks walking down the sloped gradual steps.

I have to go back now, gargoyles??? Really?
I also bought this incredible shirt.
Lucy, oh Lucy!! Way cool art on shirts. Incredible art. I love this one! 
I have to look for the card, they have no website.
See that Key, Kathy Davis made that for me. Thank you Kathy, I adore it!

We then went to Swami's cafe in Encinitas, a juice bar, coffee shop and good food, I mean good for you food that tastes great. You can look at the menu here
Yum, yum, yum!!
I found this on the flower shop next to Swami's and thought it might be a profound rule for life! LOL!!

Then we walked across the street to the gardens at the Self Realization Fellowship Temple there right on the coast. They have a garden off of K Street and we walked over to check it out.
I have lived in this area all of my life and I have never been there. WOW! I loved it. It is not a big place but it jammed packed with beauty. Now I want to go on the Temple grounds too. I bet is gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous.
Beautiful coy ponds (warning, I may say beautiful a lot!)
Glimpses of the pacific ocean (with fog coming in)
Beautiful flowers.
Bird of paradise and views of the pacific ocean.
A living canopy.

Beautiful plants and rocks.
Rock people. I did not put this here.
Rocks and more ponds with fish.
Bubbling up!
Ocean and fog again. The trail wind around and then back to the ocean and every time we came back to the ocean it would be a different feeling.
I cannot even capture in words the beauty in this small space.
If you come here or live near here you should go and visit.

Wicked cool tree with low crooked branches.
There is a great spider web here, this picture is bigger if you like to look at spider webs click on it.
Where the Swami swam, and incredible tile work.

More flowers.

More beautiful flowers.
Beautiful ocean view!

There is so much duality in this place, shade and sun, light and dark, shiny and dull. hard and soft, and sharp and smooth.
Benches through out.
Walkways too.

I think this might just be my favorite picture of the whole day. The fog rolling in.

Weird berries?
Gate to the sea?

Beautiful flowers.


Gorgeous flowers.
These leaves are furry and huge.

Cactus mouths! or tentacles.
Spikes and soft.
These do not bloom very often. It is very tall. The plant itself is probably 4 foot in diameter.


Fuzzy fingers.

Huge spikes.

1 foot plus long fish.
And very friendly too. I think they thought we were going to feed them.

Lush growth around this fish pond.

OK, this is my favorite picture. The sun has started its trek towards the western horizon and would peek through the trees sending rays out through the branches and dance off the water and the leaves, playing throughout the whole garden.

Again he peeks through.

And again.

And on the way out.
Thanks for visiting with me and if you come here you should go see this treasure and visit Swami's cafe.
I had a blast.
I live in an amazing place!


  1. What fun, Marie!! You live in a beautiful area too. As for making tortillas from scratch, I made actual masa once..."OY", is all I have to say!! LOL When I was a child, my grandmother's cook always made them from scratch as well as the flour kind...melted in your mouth like butta!! I suppose one reason I'm not much of a flour tortilla fan now is that I've yet to eat anything as wonderful as those from my childhood. However, I love corn and there are many places here in El Paso that make them from their own masa recipes and sell them.

    Have a great weekend.


  2. Oh Marie what a beautiful day you had and your pictures are gorgeous!! I loved the whole thing - thanks for sharing.

  3. Wow, what a great weekend! These are gorgeous photos, and the weather looks like it was just perfect. A Dia De Los Muertos Festival! I wish there was one near me. That looks fabulous! hehehehe, great shirt!

  4. i said to myself, 'oh goodie, i get to take a trip with marie!"

    indeed. i can feel your joy and contentment right through my keyboard. spending a day like this is something not to be sacrified, no matter how many demands try to stop us.

    it is so fun seeing what you saw, marie, and knowing you were squealing with delight.

    the shirt is fantastic! you'll look like a fashion million bucks when you wear it! post picture please! :^)


  5. I do Georgina and so do you.
    I love homemade tortillas corn and flour and you are right, once you have had a homemade tortilla from scratch it is so hard to settle for some thing store bought.
    I used to ride to school in the morning with a Mexican family when I was little and my mom would drop me off in the morning and Mrs. G would have fresh flour tortillas with milk and hot coffee with lots of sugar in it. I could eat 50 of those tortillas. The best I have ever had. Oh such good food memories.
    I am sure there are good homemade around here somewhere, but after making pupusas from scratch I am thinking I can make corn tortillas from scratch too.
    I am going to try.
    Some day I wanna come hangout with you and go eat everywhere in NM. YUM!!

  6. It was a great day Donna and I did have a wonderful time.
    Great times with friends and so much beauty, I mean,how can it get any better than that??

  7. The weather was perfect Bella.
    About 85, but not now, rainy and cold.
    You should check out the Mexican district in LA, I bet they have a great something on down there on Halloween weekend.
    Might not be too far to drive.

  8. Hey kj, I am so glad you enjoyed my daycation. I did cram a lot in to one day.
    It was so nice to get away for a while and just do nothing but gawk, great fun.
    My friend's kids are great people and they went with us. I guess I should call them adults. They are in their 20's.
    But while my friend was visiting with people she knew when she lived here before,I hung out with the kids. A lot of fun with them.I really did enjoy myself a lot and I felt alive and aware.
    I do have the shirt on kj. That is why Lucy looks a little lumpy. LOL!!

  9. Looks like a great day and you did indeed cram a lot in. Fantastic! I think I'll post some photos up of here in Wellington as the sun has been out and it is very picturesque :)


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