Comments Off | Posted by Laurie Sanders on October 31, 2008

Here are some photos of the Howl O Ween Doggy costume contest for the Furry Friends Rescue in Fremont last Saturday.
I had the pleasure of being the celebrity judge…some of my favorite photos…
Enjoy!



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Comments Off | Posted by on

         I love going to small, family owned restaurants.  They usually seat less than 30 people, and in most instances, , the food is really good.   Such is the case with a small Thai restaurant  in Marin.  It’s located in the Larkspur landing shopping center.
                  It was opened four years ago by Katkanang "Kate" Sawasdee.   She emigrated from Thailand six years ago.  It was her dream to own her own restaurant that would feature fresh wholesome authentic Thai food.

Kate Sawasdee
Owner-Chef ‘Kate Sawasdee and two friendly servers at Larkspur Landings’ Tha Siam Restaurant.

                        She has succeded. After much searching, she located a site across from the Larkspur Ferry terminal.  It is called "Tha Siam."  Tha means "ferry in Thai.   
                I love the food.  It is "arroi." (Thai for delicious)  My favorite dish is the mango-salmon salad, which I enjoy once a week.      If you’re feeling lazy, they also provide the food to go.
          In the future, I’ll be providing further tips on more great "mom and pop" restaurants. :)      But this week, it’s a strong recommendation for Tha Siam.

Imagery by Kentaro

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Comments Off | Posted by Jack Kulp on

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Friday morning trivia on KOIT:

Q: What percentage of parents admit to sneaking candy from their kids’  trick-or-treat stash?

A: about 90 percent., meaning about 10 percent are liars. I do it every year, but  always tell them that, if they’re missing a  Reese’s, it was me. I bought our candy yesterday – a bag of Reese’s and a bag of "fun size" Snickers. What’s "fun" about a Snickers the size of a sugar cube anyway?

Other Halloween stuff: Candy sales average about 2 billion for Halloween alone – by far the biggest candy purchasing holiday. Even bigger than Christmas, Easter, and Valentine’s Day.

More than 10 percent of pet owners dress their pets up Halloween costumes. Half of all adults dress up.

This is the weekend that we change our clocks…back an hour before you go to bed Saturday night. It seems like every year there are more and more clocks to change, and and at least one gets left behind for a while. So, enjoy the extra hour of sleep, and have a fab weekend.

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Comments Off | Posted by Laurie Sanders on October 30, 2008

I was browsing on the internet, and this story by Eric Forbes popped up and I wanted to share it with you…
If you are a homeowner…something to think about…I know I already have…as soon as I heard it was going to rain I moved firewood, pulled in patio stuff that I didn’t use or want to get wet, believe it or not, cleaned the gutters and replaced the filter in my furnace…
still plenty more to do…

Enjoy the article:

1. Check your heating system including filters, pilot lights and burners. Have the system serviced by a qualified professional. Cleaning and servicing now can save you money later. Learn steps to boost your furnace’s efficiency and how to replace your furnace filter.

2. Clean and vacuum dust from vents, baseboard heaters and cold-air returns. Dust build-up in ducts is a major cause of indoor pollutants and can increase incidences of cold-weather illnesses. Consider hiring a pro to clean hard-to-reach ductwork.

3. Paint interior rooms while it’s still warm enough to leave windows open. Ditto for shampooing or replacing carpets. Give a fresh start to your interiors just in time for fall and winter parties and family gatherings. Learn painting steps to success — how to choose the right paint, how to solve paint problems and more.

4. Caulk exterior joints around windows and doors. Caulking helps keep your house weather-tight and lowers heating and cooling bills. It can also help keep insects and other "critters" out of your house. When you caulk before painting, it eliminates edges where the paint may start to peel.

5. Protect your home from uninvited critters. As urban limits expand, more and more homeowners have to contend with wildlife in their yards and houses. Installing grates, securing trash containers, even humane traps may help.

6. Start to put away tools and equipment left outdoors during the summer such as play equipment, lawn mowers, barbeques, gardening tools and hoses. It may be time to winterize your pool, too.

7. It’s time to think about the condition of your roof. Be proactive and prevent emergency — and expensive –repairs. Find out about common trouble spots and how to locate a leak from inside.

8. Next to checking your roof, insulating your home is one of the most important tasks to accomplish before the onslaught of winter. Insulation goes beyond simple weatherstripping and caulking (see #4) and may be a job for professionals. The money and energy you’ll save will make the job worth it. Learn more about insulation…

9. You insulate and weatherstrip and think that you have your home all sealed up for winter. But there are some inconspicuous spots through which heat can escape. Learn how to seal these gaps too.

10. Inspect and clean your storm windows to get them ready for installation. Storm windows can help you save energy during the cold months and are significantly less expensive than putting in new double- or triple-glazed windows

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Comments Off | Posted by Laurie Sanders on

Well here we are already…Halloween 2008
Here’s a way to be green and save a pumpkin, without the mess!

 
 
 

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Comments Off | Posted by on October 28, 2008

                In 1980 in Communist Vietnam, life was very difficult, especially if you had fought on the side of the South.  That included Nien Luong. 
                  Nien, and his brother Chau and their family planned an escape.  But it wasn’t easy.  Eventually, 55 family members and friends gathered at the waters edge to board the small fishing boat that was to take them to freedom.
               After two weeks at sea, things were getting desperate.   The food and water was gone.  They managed to sustain life by boiling seawater, and capturing the steam.    "About three teaspoons a day," remembered Chau.
                Two of the children died, and they had given up hope.  It had been a month at sea.  And then hope:  They were spotted by workers on an American oil rig off the coast of Malaysia. 
             They were taken to a Malaysian refugee camp, where they spent the next year.  "Food was in short supply, and there was no medicine."
                                But some good news.  They had a sister living in America and because  Nien had been a Leutenant in the South Vietnamese army, they had some priority.  They were granted permission to go to the US.
                            The family had a sponsor from New Jersey, and that’s where they settled.  "But it was too cold," said Nien.     It was after visiting his sister in San Rafael in sunny Marin County, that he knew this was the place for him.   Eventually the entire family made the cross country trip to Marin.
                                                  Some of the family members had been mechanics in Vietnam.  They took more auto repair classes   The family  then pooled  all their money, and opened a car repair shop at 43 Tiburon Street  in San Rafael,   I heard about them from  my former mechanic who had  retired: "They are terrific mechanics, and they are honest," he said.   The first time I took my car there, they were listening to KOIT,  That was four years ago, and I have been taking my cars there ever since.
                            Since that harrowing  boat trip almost 30 years ago, a lot has happened to  the Luong family.   Children, and grandchildren, and something of which they are very proud:  They became American citizens.


KOIT listener Chau Leong escaped with brother Nien, Family & Friends from communist Vietnam.
 
Imagery by Kentaro
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Comments Off | Posted by Jack Kulp on October 27, 2008

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Monday morning trivia on KOIT:

Q: On average, how many unspent gift cards do we each carry?

A: Four.  That’s probably about what I have stashed away. The good news is that in California, gift cards can’t expire now. Bank gift cards would be the exception to that rule, though. The bankcards might also have some hidden fees attached.  The California Department of Consumer Affairs has the skinny on gift card info for CA.

Sherry noticed that one-of-a-kind Cabbage Patch Kids in the likeness of both Presidential Candidates and their veeps will be up for auction on eBay starting this Thursday. The dolls wear outfits inspired by what the real candidates wear, including the Sarah Palin, complete with the Palin trademark rimless glasses, red suit, and heels. The auction will last until Election Day, November 4th, and benefit the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation.

This morning’s Chronicle ran an article about the demise of the school bake sale. Kind of sad, really.  Back in ‘05, the State Legislature passed  nutrition guidelines that have all but trashed the traditional school fundraiser, and the effect is being felt all over the Bay Area. And not just baked goods either. In the East Bay for example, Montclair Elementary must now hold their weekly pizza sales 30 minutes AFTER the end of the school day which has greatly reduced their weekly take to the point where parents and school staff now cover the loss to pay for field trips.  During intermissions at ou kid’sschool talent shows I was always good for a couple sugar cookes and a bottle of water for a buck. But  I’d give ‘em a couple bucks more.

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Comments Off | Posted by Laurie Sanders on October 24, 2008

I’m out and about on Saturday to judge a Halloween costume contest in Fremont for the Furry Friends Rescue….
for more information  - 
click here

Here’s one the dogs up for adoption….one of my favorite breeds – Cocker Spaniels!

Isn’t Brian adorable?

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Comments (1) | Posted by on October 22, 2008

                 My girlfriend Joy  has been getting a lot of teasing lately because I have mentioned that she can’t (or doesn’t like}  to cook.   So,  she recently suggested we make a deal.  She said: " Ok, I’ll cook a big dinner, and we’ll invite friends over.    But you have to do all the clean-up, including washing  and drying  the dishes and pansDeal or no deal?"       Hmmmmmm…..I thought it over for at least  ten seconds.  "No deal.  Let’s go out to eat."   Joy is still laughing. :(

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Comments Off | Posted by on October 21, 2008

                            For over three decades the Balboa Cafe has been a popular fixture in San Franciso at the corner  of Lombard and Fillmore.  Despite the lack of parking, people seemed to find a way to get there.  The food is not fancy, but tasty and bountiful, and   boasts one of the best burgers in the Bay Area.  And yes, one of the owners is mayor Gavin Newsom.   
         About a month ago, The Balboa opened a new bar-restaurant on Miller Avenue in toney Mill Valley.
 Joy and I decided to check it out.  Luckily we had made reservations.
     We arrived at 7:45 on Saturday night.  The place was packed.  Not a table or a bar stool was vacant.  We were led to our table by  a friendly smiling hostess, and had a look around.  It was a mostly under 45 casually dressed crowd.   The site was formerly occupied by a Chinese restaurant, and underwent some serious renovations. .  A very cool look.
                   Just two doors down is  DeAngelos, another popular Mill Valley restaurant.   This should really revive the neighborhood.
   Our waiter introduced himself.   "Reynoldo" proved to be a very personable, professional server.  He said that The Balboa has been an instant hit, beginning with the "soft" opening about a month ago.  And yes, San Fransicso’s mayor also has a hand in this restaurant.
              I had salmon and Joy had the chicken.  Both were preceded by a tasty green salad.  Suffice it to say the food was excellent. No complaints, but the noise may be tough for some to handle, but then Joy and I are used to yelling at each other. (joke)   And one small thing.  There were a few guys in the place wearing baseball hats backwards.  Maybe a dress code to deal with that, Balboa?  At least at night?
        And some advice.  The Balboa is enormously popular, so make reservations, and since parking is difficult, think about taking a cab.  All in all, an enjoyable experience.
                    

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