Keeping You In Stitches

Archive for December 2011

Sedona was beside herself at the front door!  The screen doors were open and an iguana (I think of lizard as little like the ones in FL) was wedged between the glass door and the screen!  This was a pretty good sized one, hence I’ll call it an iguana.

Mark finally was able to poke at the screen and move it enough that the iguana escaped!  However, it was so frantic in getting away that it dove into the pool!  Then it didn’t surface!  So Mark, the bufo killer, was able to use the net to skim the pool and save the iguana!  Ahhhh, Pura Vida!

Feliz Anos Neuvo!

Poor Sofi!  Last night she was so miserable with an ear infection she was actually wimpering!  Poor baby!

Off to see Doctora Sharon we go!  She said to Sofi, “don’t you like to be well?”  Personally, I’m thinking she does it for attention!  LOL

She has another ear infection, and an eye infection!  So drops in the ear, drops in the eye and she needs to be seen in a week. What a way to start the New Year!

Ran a few errands while in town.  And having “needy” Sofi with me is an absolute pain!  Gonna have to get a carrier for her that straps on my back or chest or maybe a baby stroller.  I can’t do anything with her in my arms, because heaven forbid, I put her down!  She raises such a fuss you’d think I’ve left her places a million times.  I should have recorded the ruckus she made when I had her with me at the ATM.  I figured she could be on the floor because there’s a door and she can’t get out. Oh no, she was doing her loud monkey imitation and it echoed something fierce in that little room!

And now that precious little “perro” is sound asleep!  While  I’m the one that’s exhausted! LOL

While in town, I ran into Frank and Delores – driving their new car!  Well, new used car!

Adios for now!


I’ve been mulling this over in my mind for a couple of weeks and this is the week it will happen!  I’m going to have a
“Honey, this is where we’re going today” jar.

Since the construction is done and we’re a little more freer to go and do things, I think this will be a novel idea for us to explore Costa Rica, well, at least the Central Valley where we live.

Of course, since visitors are coming in mid-January (I thought it was the end of January – LOL), I feel like I should have been to some of the places I want them to see.  Mark suggested we go someplace for a night or two while they are here….and I guess that’s what we’ll do.

Having trouble on whether to go spend a day or so at the beach or the volcano.  Therefore, Meg, the slip of paper that will get pulled out of the “Honey, this is where we’re going today” jar, will have visit Tim and Meg!  So what day next week is good for you?  LOL

The things retired people come up with to keep busy!!! LOL

Pura Vida!


Wow!  Can hardly believe we actually live here – and Christmas is almost over.

Since I still don’t have window treatments yet in the bedroom, and the window wall that faces the valley; let’s just say it was way cool to lay in bed and watch the fireworks from the other mountain range we face!  Costa Ricans celebrate Christmas on Dec. 24 and Dec. 25 is just another day to them.

We were invited to Bruce and Frances’ for Christmas dinner; it was unbelievably delish!  Turkey!!!! Dressing, homemade green bean casserole that was way better than the mushroom soup version!  And a host of other food….I don’t think we’ll eat again till….well, maybe sometime late tomorrow.

After dinner we wandered out onto the rancho and as if on cue, there were toucans in the trees.  They are so colorful!  And really interesting to watch as they flew from tree to tree.

As I’m writing this, it’s about 7:15 p.m. and 73 degrees.   Christmas was wonderful – being able to have windows open, priceless!!! $$$$$ saved…..

We had a very nice Christmas with friends and hope everyone else had wonderful Christmases too!!!

For the last time this year….Feliz Navidad!

Pura Vida.

Saw an ophthamologist this morning regarding a checkup on the nevus on my retina.  Very nice Doctor  and his name is Diego.

Said the pressure in my eyes was just perfect!  That’s about the only perfect thing on my body…..

When it came time to put the drops in my eyes, he started to say “Now, please remove your clo”  …..and then he caught himself!  I immediately started laughing and said “remove my clothes”.  Doctora Victoria, the optometrist, was in the room with us and burst out laughing!  We just kept looking at each other – I couldn’t look at Diego because I’m sure his face was red!

Anyway, outcome is they are setting up an appointment for me in San Jose in January to go have pictures taken of my nevus….rest assured, friends, I’ll be posting pictures of it!

Feliz Navidad!



Tomorrow I see the opthamologist.  As I’m reading through the medical papers regarding a nevus on the retina of my left eye, I noticed the diagnosis….immature cataracts!  Anyone that knows me, should know that I’m far from being immature!

Nevus (think large freckle)  on my retina so far has not grown and that’s a very good thing.  If it starts to grow, there are no if’s, and’s or but’s about it, it will be malignant, but can be removed.  I’ve been advised that since I’ve had it for so long (about 7 years), and there’s been no growth, odds are it will stay the same.  Still makes me nervous when it’s time to have it checked out.

Immature cataracts!  Sheesh!  I’ve heard of them having to “ripen” before anything can be done, but to call them immature!

Sure hope this guy understands English or else my translator app will get a good work-out.  But the optometrist in the office speaks great English, so I’m glad Doctora Victoria will be available.

Pura Vida!!!

and had pizza that was cooked in their outdoor brick oven!  It was Pat’s birthday.  John, hubby, built the outdoor brick oven.

Homemade pizza dough…..homemade pizza sauce, and any topping you could imagine.  We each made our own pizza and then put the toppings on that we wanted.  Then into the oven it went….and in minutes, it was done!  Delish!  Really delish!!

And then we had ice cream and cake afterwards and sang Happy Birthday to Pat! LOL

Walls are up on the house they are building; they got cabinet doors installed today; she had a busy and delightful birthday in my opinion.

On another note, Dec. 21, 2011 marks my 6 months living in Costa Rica!  Hoping to get our residency soon!

Feliz Navidad

Pura Vida

and all that jazz!

Last week a friend, Pat, said she was going to Dinia’s to make Tamales, which is “the Christmas food” in Costa Rica.  I immediately said – “oh ask her if I can come too”.  Like the friendly people here, she said “of course”.  It was fun!  That’s all I can say…..and I wished that my friend, Terri, could have been here.  She would have absolutely loved doing it too!

You use a couple of banana leaves, put a hefty spoonful of masa in the middle – then the fun begins!  You add a spoonful of steamed carrots, some rice (arrozo), some stewed pork (cerado); a strip of sweet red pepper; a few peas – it was told to me that different families use different ingredients – ie: onion, olives, etc.

After this is done, you roll up the banana leaves and then fold the ends in to meet in the middle; make another one and then put these 2 together and tie with cotton string.

Then you boil them in a huge pot over an open fire for about an hour.  I cannot tell you how much I thoroughly enjoyed having the opportunity to be able to partake of this!

Dinia spent all day yesterday making the “innards”; her father made the masa (ground corn, Lizano (a salsa like topping), and pork/chicken broth, whichever you want.  Dinia’s mother and sister-in-law were also making tamales; her father was the chef for boiling them and the string man (tied the string on the tamales).  At one point when I was taking pictures of him removing some cooked tamales from the huge pot, he wanted to know if I wanted to remove some.  I did not do that because I could see an emergency run to Doctora Candy!

Today was the culmination of all of yesterday’s work!

I am so enjoying learning new customs and being able to do them.

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Partied 3 nights in a row this week and on Friday night we both crashed!  Can’t decide if we’re too old to party 3 nights in a row or not. LOL

Saturday afternoon we ventured back into town to partake of the Christmas festivities being held in the park.  There were a few booths set up with things to sell….hmmm, maybe I should work on getting stuff made and have my self a little table of goodies for sale next year.

Watched kids from probably 3 years old to maybe 10-12 doing different dances.  The first group was a “dance” telling the story of Jesus’ birth.  When Mary and Joseph wandered into the town, it was hysterical….Mary actually had a little baby bump!  Then when they made their way to the stable, Joseph held up the blanket for the newborn babe, while Mary pulled the baby bump out!  Talk about a great chuckle!  Not everyone could see it, but where we were, it was very obvious.  Watched other kids dancing and it’s just darling!!!

Wandered over to Don Tados and had a bite to eat to waste  time before the Christmas parade!  And what a parade it was! Nothing compared to the parade at Disney World, but for little ole Atenas it was absolutely awesome!  Some floats were really detailed.  Lots of bands – some from Paos, Naranjo and other areas.  When these bands march, it’s not just a march, they’ve got a little jive in their steps, bopping and weaving!  And the drums!  I’m thinking that a “drum store” might be a good business to start up!  They do like to pound their drums!! If you looked around at the crowd, everyone was moving to the beat of the drums; even the little kids!  Some of those 3 years little girls know how to swivel their hips already!

There was a group of kids that specialized in belly dancing!  Brought back some great memories of when “our gang” took belly dancing classes.  They were so cute….and of course, I love their costumes!  Maybe next Christmas, I’ll dress up in my belly dancing outfit, including my coin bra!  Tee Hee!

If was a great evening…..felt like it was a Christmas Fiesta/Celebration.  If you weren’t there, you missed a wonderful time!

Adios, and Feliz Navidad!

Tuesday, December 13th, we hosted our first annual First Day of Christmas get together!  Even tho’ the weather was gloomy, everyone’s attendance certainly brightened it up! And neither of us happened to get pics!

I don’t quite understand, but people were marveling over the fact that I brought Christmas decor with me; my feelings were, December 25th is Christmas and always will be for me.  Yes, I most definitely brought too many “things” with me, but my Christmas decorations, etc. are important, and there was no way those were getting left behind!  Even tho’ I still haven’t found all I brought!

Perhaps two full sized decorated Christmas trees within 6 feet of each other was a tad much; but one is inside and one is outside.

Had 16 new friends attend from all over the U.S.  It was a nice group of people and according to comments, “we had such a nice time.”

Lots of drinks and snacks – and yes, it was all dietary and good for you….well, at least it was good! LOL  I bought some bread-like-cake dessert and made a whiskey sauce to put over it; it reminded me of being in New Orleans and having bread pudding!  It was delish!!!

We were a little nervous about how the dogs would react with so many people wandering around.  They were perfect!!!  No growling, etc.  Of course, Sofi’s feet hardly touched the ground!  But everyone made over Derby and Sedona too.  At one point, Sedona walked into her crate and laid down and began munching on a chew toy.  Her crate was right in the middle of all the hub-bub.  She has her “bitch moments” as we all do, but she sure was good on Tuesday evening!

All of a sudden we started hearing mooing…..yep, the cows got loose!  Guess they felt left out because they weren’t invited!  And there was a horse in the lot next to us wandering around.  I, of course, thought it was hysterical….I’m sure other people were appalled, but come on, this is Costa Rica, Pura Vida, everything that happens is OK!  I love watching the cows wander when they are loose; they are huge and oblivious to their surroundings.

This was the first time a lot of people had been to our house….as they are getting out of their vehicles, the comment heard was “how in the world did you find this place?”  But we had lots of nice comments on our addition.

Yes, I miss my friends in the U.S., but you know what, this is starting to feel like home!  I can’t wait till people start coming down to see what living in Costa Rica is like!  First group  arrives in January!  I’m so excited, I can’t stand it!!!

Weds. we drove to San Jose to pick up a box of dog pill pockets, etc.  Guess it got flagged because the box was from Drs. Foster and Smith, an animal place….pill pockets are unheard of in Costa Rica.  And we had to pay a customs fee of 800 colones (approximately $1.60 in US money).  Got home a little before 5 p.m. and had to hurriedly get ready to go to a wine tasting.  It was fun….lucky for us, we were at a table of 3 young couples; the three men were involved in a school where rich parents send their kids who are “lost”.  Some have had multiple parents, gotten mixed in the wrong crowd, etc.  We were with Pat and John, and the new school they are building is very near them!  One of the couples inquired about this house when it was for sale and were told “it’s been sold.”  Yippie for us!!!

Tonight is another big to-do hosted by our attorney.  Something going on 3 days in a row, is a bit much for us to handle (LOL), but we’re trying our darndest to stay awake for all these things!

Still kind of hard to believe it’s almost Christmas with doors and windows wide open!  We love it!!!!  No a/c bills or heating bills….

Wishing all my readers and friends have a wonderful Holiday Season!

Adios for now and Pura Vida!




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