Beach Bits,  Buddies

Gingermog was here!

Gingermog and Bug

Sometimes when I’m bragging about my blog (or more likely defending it) I like to say a little self-righteously, Well, at least I’m big in the UK! as if I had thousands of fans across the pond. It would only be a small misuse of the truth because while I probably only have a few readers in the UK they are a VERY BIG DEAL!

Specifically, I have the most wonderful loyal reader named Lynne in the UK. She doesn’t have a blog (yet) but she does have a pretty cool animation site and she’s promised to help me animate Secret Agent Josephine someday. Wouldn’t that be fun?

Anyway, Lynne has been reading this blog since way back…back in those days when I wrote embarrassing things that I have since taken down. She’s one of those loyals. And I love her dearly. She’s written here before as a guest poster but most of you know her as Gingermog. That’s what we all call her. We even called her that when she showed up at my house and we went to the beach. You should have heard Bug hollering out, “Gingermog!” on the beach. It was pretty funny.

Anyway Gingermog and her husband and her friend Barbara were out for a visit this last weekend. We took them to the beach and got smashed by some small but mighty waves. The beach was hot and packed with tourists but that did not stop us from having a really good time—the FULL California experience, as I like to call it.

There really is something invigorating about sitting in the sun with a passel of people, getting all hot and sweaty until you can’t stand it a minute more and then washing off all the sweat and grime with the most bracing cold salt water. It’s even better if the wave is surprisingly big and knocks you around a bit. You come out of that ocean a whole new person.

I challenge anyone having a bad day to try it.

me and Gingermog

This would explain my horribly styled 80’s side part and eyebrows that are not combed upwards like they are supposed to be. I just got tackled by a wave! But you know what? Who cares! At least we are in our bathing suits (or swimming costumes, as Gingermog calls them) and having fun.

Gingermog at my beach!

I think the best part for me was dinner. I thought we should all go out to eat because I didn’t really have anything planned and I badly needed to go grocery shopping. Toby didn’t agree since (he hates restaurants and) he recently treated everyone for my birthday lunch and he was still sort of recovering from that. He suggested I just make some fresh pasta and reheat some old Chicken Cacciatore sauce I had in the refrigerator. It sounds terrible that I would serve my guests leftovers but they are pretty good leftovers so I reluctantly agreed.

After the beach, we walked to the small market by my house and picked up some lettuce for a salad, some berries for dessert and a can of whipped cream (thanks to Gingermog) and a couple of bottles of red wine (thanks to Barbara). Apparently, that’s all you need for a good dinner with guests.

I’m sure the wine played a large part but we had the best time. We ate on the floor, (on my terribly stained carpet that I fret about entirely too much!!!) gathered around the coffee table and talking. Who needs chairs!? Bug pulled out all the stops, of course, doing cartwheels on the couch and just plain being silly. It was a great night.

gingermog was here

Gingermog gave me this tea towel. I need to take a better photo of it because it has red double-decker buses on it and it is so very British. I love it. I almost don’t want to use it but Gingermog promised to send me another one when this one gets stained. So I’m going to use it everyday and remember the good times!


  • Kuky

    How very fun! Makes me want to visit you right now.

    And have you convinced Gingermog to start a blog? I know I’d subscribe and read. I think I’ve actually told her that before too.

  • bethany actually

    I’m so sad that I had to leave California before Lynne came to visit! I’d have loved to meet her. But I am happy you guys had such a great trip! And I speak from experience, when you’re traveling overseas and eating nothing but restaurant meals, a home-cooked meal in someone’s home is AWESOME. I am sure they will remember that meal fondly and not even think about the carpet. :-)

  • Jora

    I’m sure Gingermog couldn’t have thought up a better day and evening to spend with you and the Bug. :-) And I think you look beautiful in those photos — don’t make any excuses, girlfriend!

  • Ninabi

    What fun! Isn’t it amazing how in this day and age, we can have close friends half a world away?

    Sweaty and sticky here in the desert- the beach sounds like a really, really good idea right now!

  • Andrea

    Hello from another uk lurker. I’ve been an avid reader for a while and have shamelessly stolen / been inpired by several of your creative ideas. Keep ’em coming!! ?

  • Madge

    That looks like such a wonderful time. Did you mention the chicken cacciatore to me before? I was craving it last night before I went to bed and here I’m reading about it as I’m cooking it.

    I love all the pictures.

  • Nicola

    Yay! I’m British too and have read your blog for several years! Love that a fellow Brit came to visit. We’re the best ;)

  • BeachMama

    Oh what a fun adventure. So wonderful to have Gingermog visit you! I would have happily ate pasta with leftover sauce on your stained carpet because it would mean that I was hanging out with you in California after a day at the beach!! Until the next time…

  • Alissa

    Another faithful UK reader here too (you’re right you are big in the UK :) )! I’ve been visiting your site since before Bug was born and think you’re amazingly talented.

  • a chris

    Whoops, I was sort of off the internet for a while there, but since I read this blog from the UK I feel like I have to comment and be counted!

    Looks like a great visit. Gorgeous pictures!

    The side-part comment reminded me of something: I’ve been having eerie high-school deja vu from the 13-year-olds I’m starting to see in skinny jeans and hairsprayed bangs. Also leggings and off-the-shoulder t-shirts, neon pink and turquoise…I think of Cyndi Lauper; maybe I’m supposed to think Madonna? It’s all vague to me now… And the guys in long plaid boxer shorts — like a mix of pyjamas and the OP board shorts from junior high. And yet the low-rise plumber’s-butt (or here’s-my-entire-butt-I-bet-you’d-like-to-know-how-my-pants-stay-up-at-all) jeans persist…I’m clearly an Old Person, even if I haven’t grown up yet.

    The only time I’ve been repeatedly swept off my feet by waves it was on a stony beach and I did not like it very much.