Monday, December 31, 2018


The Life of B December Challenge

Photo of the Time Square Waterford crystal ball taken in New York City in 2011.

Foto Tunes

Tom the backroads traveller hosts this weekly meme. 

November 2018 - Granada Spain

Lots more wet photos at the Alhambra.

My Fair Lady - The Rain in Spain

Monday Mural

I'm linking up at Monday Mural

December 2018 - Mazatlan Mexico

These murals are in a parking garage in the historic zone. The parking spot is in the shell of a majestic colonial home.

This was done of Giberto Manjarrez whom we've met several times with Bill and Carol.

Click here to see more of Gilberto's work and more here.

Sunday, December 30, 2018


One Word Sunday challenge    30 December: Old

“Laughter is timeless. Imagination has no age. And dreams are forever.” – Walt Disney

I'd like to think that this saying expresses how John and I feel about aging.


The Life of B December Challenge

I've posted Toronto's Old City Hall before.

Installed in 1900 this Gillett and Johnston clock has run nearly continuously since then - keeping time on the clock tower of the Toronto Old City Hall.


Be amazed - Toronto relies on this ancient clock to keep time for the downtown core.


The bells are legendary and are an aural symbol of Toronto. The chiming of the bells punctuate the city, marking each 15 minutes of the day - seven days a week, 24 hours a day.

The clock room houses three bells. The largest bell, all 11,000 pounds of it, is known as Big Ben. There is one small and unofficial inscription just below the coat of arms on the bell and reads "J.K.Oct.18, 1900". Four garnished stone gargoyles grace the upper corners of the clock tower.

inSPIREd Sunday

Sally and Beth host inSPIREd Sunday!  

November 2018 - Toledo Spain

This was simply stunning!

The Synagogue of Santa María la Blanca (literally Synagogue of Saint Mary the White, originally known as the Ibn Shushan Synagogue, or commonly the Congregational Synagogue of Toledo) is a museum and former synagogue in Toledo. Erected in 1180, according to an inscription on a beam, it is disputably considered the oldest synagogue building in Europe still standing. It is now owned and preserved by the Catholic Church.

Its stylistic and cultural classification is unique among surviving buildings as it was constructed under the Christian Kingdom of Castile by Islamic architects for Jewish use. It is considered a symbol of the cooperation that existed among the three cultures that populated the Iberian Peninsula during the Middle Ages.

The synagogue is a Mudéjar construction, created by Moorish architects for non-Islamic purposes. But it can also be considered one of the finest example of Almohad architecture because of its construction elements and style. The plain white interior walls as well as the use of brick and of pillars instead of columns are characteristics of Almohad architecture. There are also nuances in its architectural classification, because although it was constructed as a synagogue, its hypostyle room and the lack of a women's gallery make it closer in character to a mosque. Though it does not have a women's gallery today, an early twentieth century architect suggested that it did at one time have a one

The focal point of the synagogue is the scallop-shell-topped arch at the center of the building. This was the location of the Torah ark. In many synagogues found throughout the Jewish Diaspora and what is now Israel, the scallop shell motif is a marker for the location where a portable ark should be placed. Evidence from Catholic altarpieces depicts the ark as a tall, movable structure that would fit nicely in this particular niche. It is torpedo shaped, much like a traditional Sephardic Torah scroll case.

The synagogue was turned into a church in 1405 or 1411, but without any major renovations. It took at that time the name of Santa María la Blanca (Saint Mary the White) and today it is most commonly known by this name.

The interior features a series of arcades supported on a network of twenty-four octagonal piers and eight engaged piers. These octagonal supports line the central aisle of the synagogue and support the large arcade of horseshoe arches above. The arches rest on intricately detailed capitals with finely carved pinecones and other vegetal imagery. These capitals are Mudéjar in style and are derived from classical, Corinthian antecedents as well as Byzantine concepts.


Friday, December 28, 2018

Feliz Navidad

Plaza Machado Mazatlan

Our weekly recap
December 2018 - Mazatlan Mexico

Six Word Saturday Jack Frost

Lazy morning, slept in, fruit salad and yogurt for breakfast.

I forgot to mention grocery prices. Head of lettuce $1 CDN as opposed to the $5 I paid before we left. Half a cantaloupe $0.82. 2 green peppers $1. $1.71 for a dozen eggs.Bottle of vodka $9.

We strolled out for lunch and decided on Chili Pepper's right on the beach, we hadn't been here before.

Not a bad view.

Good salsa but Pancho's is still leading the pack.

My coconut shrimp with warm mango sauce, really good, we'll definitely be back.

John had garlic shrimp.

Never been in, the expats like to hang out here.

Just a little guy today, not warm enough for him to come out.

A siesta is always good.

There was a wedding at the resort and the band was loud! But good.

We watched a really good 2017 movie with Pierce Bronson The Foreigner.

Inspired Sunday Barcelona Spain
Lens-Artists Photo Challenge REFLECTIONS

A cloudy day so we lounged around, catching up on TV, reading and watching football. Fruit for breakfast and an omelet for lunch.

We had dinner plans with Bill and Carol, but it was going to be a chilly evening to dine outside so we decided to rebook.
John was content with two football games to watch. I  watched the original, original A Star is Born with Gloria Gayner!!

We had chicken, broccoli and potatoes for dinner.

Foto Tunes
Monday Mural

We headed back to Los Osuna this morning but the fermentation process was completed yesterday. No worries, we had a private showing.

Heading to work.

Butterflies are in abundance this year.

Click here to see more of Los Osuna.

My Dona Pena crepes.

John's chorizo, eggs, beans and chilaquiles.

Carol's chocolate waffles!

In the men's bathroom "The Drunk".

From there we made a stop at Cerritos, where a lot of the small fishing boats come in. There is a market and some seafood restaurants.

He just took these oysters out of the ocean!

Showing John a close up of the oysters.

Some musicians off to work.

Click here to see Carol's post with a video.

Fresh fruit served with chili.

Musicians grabbing a snack of oysters with hot sauce before serenading the people on the beach.

Bill took his drone up.

And this little guy was fascinated.

While this one ran up and down the beach following it.

Tuesday Treasures and Travel Tuesday
Tuesday Photo Challenge Cold and Warm

Christmas Day and we went to Lucky B's for breakfast. There were two cruise ships in town so it is fun to watch them wander around town.

John had an omelet and this is my ranchero eggs.

Bill and Carol left to see the divers and we wandered a little.

Yes, my little tourists, come buy some sillllver!

Took a pulmonia back and relaxed the day away. Steak for dinner.

ABC Wednesday Letter Y

We took the bus into town, the first time this trip. It's always an experience. The cost is 11 pesos or 0.75 Cdn cents.

We got off at the market, found the health food store I had read about, but it didn't carry any gluten free bread. Then walked around a bit before lunch.

The blue building is just a shell and is used as a parking lot.

A new art gallery and will be part of the monthly Art Walk.

A new craft brewery.

New consignment shop this season.

Lunch view.

A Mexican plate for John.

Tequila shrimp for me.

From there we walked back to the market to get the bus.

This guy was napping in Gandarva Art Gallery.

Just another pretty picture of the church.

Waiting for the bus at the market.

Thursday Doors Los Osuna
A Photo A Week NEW

Walking around the dock early in the morning.

My new favourite Oikos yogurt coconut!

A lazy day until we went downtown to meet a couple for dinner. She had been in John's Spanish class in the fall and is here for two weeks on vacation.
We went to Topolo, known for their pork shank, which three of us had. No one took a photo!

I did video the Spanish coffee preparation.

Pull Up a Seat Mazatlan
Weekend Roundup Letter Z
Weekend Reflections Los Osuna
Wit's End Weekly Photo Challenge 2018 Selfies
#TimeSquare LV NV

We were just sitting around in our jammies and drinking coffee when Carol called and said "you've got 15 minutes if you want to go to Malpica and Copala"!


Malpica is a sleepy town outside of Mazatlan, known for its bakery. It is far from the honking horns and crazy drivers currently in Mazatlan for the holidays.

The oven that makes the bread and pastries taste so good.

Mural depicting the town's history.

Just before Concordia, off highway 40, there is a small town with hot springs. The government built a laundry facility over the springs which included washboards.

Kind of a fun, communal activity, doing the laundry together. But then you have to wring those jeans out, and drag it home to hang out and dry.

Bill has a big bag of candy to pass out to the kids.

Carol, then John, testing the water temperature, HOT.

On to Copala, passing by Concordia.

Copala used to be a busy little town, but since they've built the new, faster highway to Durango, this town is fading away.
No stoplights surrounded by the Sierra Madre mountains

During the last part of the 19th century, Copala was the center of the region’s silver mining district. Eventually, the mines closed, and the town became nearly deserted. Today, it's a National Historic Landmark with 650 full-time residents and a part-time community of retired Americans and Canadians devoted to the village’s picturesque solitude.

The black wagon says Copala Butter Company.
For a time, early in the 20th century, the largest mine operator in the region was Charles Butter, who also owned properties in Colombia, Nicaragua, South Africa and Australia. His Copala operation included 11,000 acres of lumber and grazing land, 2,000 acres with mineral deposits, 4 tube mills, a 1,000-horsepower steam boiler, a foundry and machine shop. Among the most productive on Mexico's West coast, the Butter mines processed 3,000 tons of gold and silver ore monthly. The Mexican Revolution took its toll here as elsewhere, though, and the town also suffered a cholera epidemic and a devastating cyclone. What had been a city of almost 10,000 shrank to less than a tenth of that in decades to follow.

Now the bells of the Iglesia San Jose ring out while the square is mostly deserted.

Click here to visit the church in 2014.
Gorgeous church, falling into disrepair.

See the gap at the top?

There it is!

The Christmas creche.

In a craft store.

Time for lunch. This restaurant just opened. Seems there's a scandal/murder associated with the place. Husband came home and found his wife in flagrante with her boyfriend, they ran out naked and the wronged husband shot him.

The sign by the fireplace also says Copala Butter Company, which has nothing to do with the dairy spread. Instead, it’s a small restaurant  400-year-old structure which is said to have previously housed the offices of the Butter Mining Company.

I had the shrimp rancheros.

The others had the chicken fajitas.


Carol hitching a ride.

Heading back.


I'm on a Lynda La Plante kick, catching up on her series. I finished Above Suspicion and started Silent Scream

Also finished The Ever After, started well but then nothing, seriously.
Deadly Beloved, my first foray into this author, obviously loved by many, but it didn't work for me.
A Game For All The Family - don't think I'll bother finishing this!

Final count for 2018 - 86


Beth hosts Weekend Cooking where you can post anything food related.
Saturday Snapshots is hosted by West Metro Mommy.
Sundays in my City
Monday Walks
Monday Morning Blog Club
Through My Lens Monday
Our World Tuesday
Wanderful Wednesday #wanderfulwednesday
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Weekly Postcard Friday