Darwin foraged for succulents, and I cranked up the music. A perfect weekend!

I hope you enjoyed a breathing lighter kind of weekend.

We enjoyed a slower pace and I relished being home for much of the time.

I’m not sure what goes on when I’m away from home, but I’m always surprised at what I discover when I am looking out my kitchen window. I happened  to catch a certain “character” in acts of mischief.

Caught in the act–here was a foraging Darwin munching on my plants again. In winter months his metabolism slows down and I might not see him for two to three days. Then all of a sudden he suddenly appears!


This 50 pound tortoise is also getting a little taller. He can reach up any time he feels like a snack, and before I even know what he’s up to–three big bites and one of my succulents has vanished.


If I catch him in the act I can do something about it.


He has his very own  Aloe supply. I break off big pieces and feed it to him. He’s an African Sulcata, and the Aloe is native to Africa, so somewhere in his memory he is at home with this treat. He devours it in huge quantities!


If succulents aren’t at home in your climate, you might enjoy seeing some of the unusual specimens that thrive in dry and desert climates. Click HERE to see some unique and beautiful cactus and succulents from one of our favorite nurseries, California Cactus Center.

Most succulents are hearty and do very well without a lot of fuss, but they grow slowly so can be expensive. And imagine this! Here I am cultivating a collection simply to feed Darwin! I hope he appreciates the attention he’s getting.

Darwin with succulents

I’ve also enjoyed a weekend of tuning out distractions and listening to music.

was the lucky recipient of a CD, a gift from my Charleston friend and Cootchie Mama, Andra. On Christmas Eve I was the final “contestant” to win one of Andra’s musical prizes and for the past day or so I’ve been enjoying the King of Cool, Dean Martin.

Dean Martin

Listening to the warm, warbling voice of an American classic crooner is a wonderful way to relax.

But there’s more!

Thursday I attended an “After-Christmas Party” complete with white elephant gifts. You know how that works, don’t you? Everyone has a number and chooses a gift according to their number,  but on subsequent turns, each person can open a new present or opt to “steal” another person’s unwrapped gift.

My number was one of the very last so I was poised to make my move…


…and I did! I snatched Beyoncé right out from under someone who least expected me–a senior citizen– to be the thief. But haven’t I always told you my musical tastes are quite eclectic?

Dean Martin and Beyoncé in the same sentence…what can I say? I like all music.

And the musical good times just kept coming. I’ve previously mentioned how much I enjoy The Nitty Gritty Dirt Man, Kevin. 

Kevin and I frequently note how we share similar musical tastes as well as other entertainment favorites.  When I wrote about how much I loved the music in the 1980 movie “Fame,” Kevin quickly responded that “Fame” was at the top of the list of his all-time favorite films. In fact, when the movie first aired on HBO he themed a party around it going all out when he and his friends danced on a car!

Now that sounds like music appreciation–and fun!

Kevin shared the link to the song, “I Sing the Body Electric,” my favorite from the movie, and I thought you might enjoy it, too.  The young soloists at the very beginning include Irene Cara and you may recognize a very young, and at that time unknown, Paul McCrane.

I think it’s time for me to see this move again!

What soundtrack would you like to move to this week? There’s something for every mood, from Dino to Beyoncé to our favorite movies, old and new– and much, much more, of course.

A recipe for breathing lighter? Turn on the music, crank it up!

I guarantee you’ll be breathing lighter in no time!