After a couple days of smooth sailing in the Westy, it was time for Jacqui and I to make our two Southern California stops. First up was Indio to visit our friends Helen, Martin and their new baby Elliot.
However, we were in for a huge surprise when we arrived because Martin's mom Diana was there also. Now a friend's mom's presence may not get everyone excited, but there's something you should know about Diana. Not only is she a sweetheart, she has some serious talent in the kitchen.
All five of us got together to help whip up a gigantic batch of home made tamales! Pounds and pounds of masa, meat, corn husks and hard work yielded 330 of these delicious little monsters. I never would have known they were so labor intensive if I wasn't right there helping out. I also never would have known how many pounds of bacon fat go into these little guys, but that's a fact that you should just blissfully forget next time you scarf one down.
Mass production of Tamales!
Even baby Elliot was in on the tamale making mix... kind of. Jacqui was so excited to hold him she refused to put him down while helping out. Between Jacqui's obsession with wanting to learn salsa dancing and holding babies while making tamales, I don't think Jacqui is going to have any trouble fitting in while we drive through Mexico.
All in all it was a very foodie couple of days. Between the tamales, home made chicken mole AND home made cookies, Jacqui and I may have left Helen and Martin's carrying a few extra pounds around our midsection. After a gratuitous amount of baby play and catching up, our few days in Indio flew by and we were off to our final pre-border visit with Sarah, Geoff and little miss Katie.
The whole tamale building crew, Martin and I having a white-trash moment and Jacqui getting trigger happy on baby pics
Jacqui and I really failed in the picture department while visiting our San Diego family. Unfortunately, a whole mess of unexpected, last minute problems with the Westy left me spending more time in their driveway wrenching, than in the house socializing. With all the hustle and bustle to make our border crossing deadline, the camera spent almost the entire time in it's case.
Using one of the neighbors exotically placed lifts and running around trying to round up the last of the needs for the Westy
Regardless, Jacqui and I would like to give a special thanks to Sarah, Geoff and Katie who have continually opened their house to us, and are constantly some of our favorite people to visit whether we are heading North or South. I'd also like to wish little miss Katie a speedy recovery since she broke her arm shortly before our visit.