Saturday, February 02, 2008

In which we watch some whales. And laugh.

Saturday morning. We stumble out of bed, have breakfast,

mess around in the cool glass elevator with the mirrored ceiling,

tease the single cousin about the concierge she was flirting with the night before,

(note the lean against his desk...)

wander around some waterfront shopping,

talk, laugh, surreptitiously or not so surreptitiously watch some firefighters (not fighting fires, just standing around chatting)...

I was playing with my new camera. I figured out that a 2 GB memory card can hold somewhere around 6000 photos with my current settings, so I took photos with abandon.

Anything and everything, and used the 3 frames a second setting for absolutely no good reason...

Except for this series of LuAnn "dancing"...

That was a very good thing to photograph at 3 frames per second.

Then we went whale watching. Gray whale watching. It was a beautiful bright sunny day, if slightly chilly on the upper deck. We saw a bunch of pelicans rather up close...

And sea lions...

The whales are so cool up close. They popped up really very close to the boat.
And because San Diego is a military town, we also saw F16's flying overhead.

We went to a great restaurant Saturday night...

Then we went back to the hotel and laid around in our jammies drinking wine and eating brownies and laughing. Since I have to see all these women in a few months, I am not posting any pictures of that part of the evening. You are welcome, Deb.

The Brownies.

Make a dark chocolate brownie mix as directed, or make your own brownies.

Sprinkle really good dark chocolate chips over the top of the brownies when you take them out of the oven. (I used Nestle's Chocolatier brand. ) Use lots.

Cut up caramels with kitchen shears (into four to six pieces each) and sprinkle those across the brownies too.

When the brownies cool, top with this frosting:

  • Ghiradelli's sweet chocolate powder and cocoa
  • Butter (half a stick, maybe)
  • half and half. (I use fat free. I don't know why I bother)
  • vanilla (a teaspoonish amount)
  • powdered sugar (about the same amount as the cocoa, maybe?)

Melt the butter in a small saucepan over probably rather low heat. Beat in the rest of the stuff. This is the tough part -- you HAVE to taste it to make sure it tastes FABULOUS. I don't measure -- if it's not thick enough I add cocoa and sugar, if I want a thinner glaze I add more half and half.

(For birthday cakes, I bake chocolate cake or cupcakes, put them on a platter, and dump a fairly thin version of this glaze over the top of them. )

For the brownies, once the glaze/frosting is FABULOUS, I just poured it over the pan of brownies, threw them in the back seat and drove to San Diego. Woot.


  1. How cool was THAT first pic of you all!!! All of these were absolutely stunning..what a lovely time :)
    And good grief, that recipe sounds yummy!! I do miss san diego a bit. We moved last year....and now that I'm in 30F degree weather....I REALLY miss it.

  2. I love it!!!! What fun you guys must have had. The pictures are awesome and I'm just the tiniest, no I'm hugely, jealous because it looks like you guys had such fun. The Brownies sounds sinful. I'll have to try them. :)

  3. I wuth gunna thay thumthing about the picthures but I'm drooling and gathping for air for thum brownieth. Pleath thend thum to me for medithinal purpotheth.

  4. Those whale photos! I am very jealous.

    I always love your photos though.

  5. Thanks, everybody!

    Sandy -- it rained on San Diego is not completely fabulous all the time...

    Cut the brownies small, they are very rich! I love recipes like this -- so easy to do, and taste like you slaved. (I just talked to my Mom, and she suggested trying a caramel ice cream time!).

  6. Oh YAY it looked like you had a HOOT!!! thanks for posting the pics.. I am grinning away like an idiot here.. heheheheheh

    cheers kim

  7. Looks like a blast!


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