Year 1 Days 104 and 105 Cheesecake!

Yesterday we left our campground at the Del Valle Recreational Area to drive up to Carmichael which is a suburb of Sacramento. One is only allowed to spend 2 week periods at the campground and must wait two days before you are allowed another two week period. Thus, we decided to drive up to Carmichael to visit with our dear friends, Carolyn and Joyce, two sisters who we have known for the last 33 years before returning to Del Valle. Mary Margaret and Carolyn were nurses together at American River Hospital in Sacramento when they first met back in 1984.

We love these ladies very much as they are such warm and generous people. I put people into one of two groups: “givers” and “takers”. They are firmly in the “givers” group because they have a long history of taking care of and looking out for their friends, neighbors and family. They are the epitome of loving generosity. Now do not get me wrong, like all of us, they have number of funny little quirks. But it is those quirks that I love and they are always a hoot to be around.

Two of their quirks is that they are both very feisty and opinionated. Thus, each time we get together, we discuss all kinds of issues and they share their positions with such passion. This is a characteristic that is shared by Mary Margaret and is what I love about all three of them.

Each time we come, we discover that Carolyn has baked a couple of her phenomenally delicious New York styled cheesecakes. One she serves as dessert when we are here, the other, if I behave myself, is presented to us when we leave. Needless to say, I am like a little puppy dog trying to be good whenever we come. I really love her cheesecake!

Today, Mary Margaret and Carolyn spent the day baking away and they will do even more tomorrow. The stacks of various types of Christmas cookies and bread are starting to pile up. They both love cooking and baking such treats is a joy for Mary Margaret. Being of Hungarian decedent, she makes a number of unique cookies that our family loves. Yum!

While the ladies tied up the oven with baking, I fired up our BBQ grill to cook a standing rib roast that Carolyn bought for dinner tonight. I have never grilled a rib roast before but it turned out great and pared very well with the mashed potatoes and gravy (made from the roast drippings) string beans and cauliflower that Carolyn made. Double Yum! Of course, it was all crowned with the yummy cheesecake that I had dreamed off all day. Triple Yum!

Tomorrow, I will be getting together with another fellow who I used to work with back when we lived in the Sacramento area and I worked in the Deukmejian Administration. Mohinder used to be in charge of permitting hazardous waste facilities for one of the state’s Regional Offices back then and my engineers used to provide technical support in this permitting process to him and his staff. It has been at least 15 years since we have last met so I am looking forward to seeing him again.

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