Friday, December 30, 2011

The End of Another Year

Another year is coming to a close... it seems like time just flies by faster and faster with each passing day!

This has been a great year for us personally, as well as a wonderful year of continued success at Taos Unlimited (and Santa Fe Unlimited).

We send good wishes to our blog readers, clients and friends, for the coming new year. ~Jean and Aimee

Monday, December 26, 2011

Taos A to Z Excerpt: Burro (or Donkey)

A domesticated member of the horse family, the donkey’s wild ancestor is the African Wild Ass. Males are called jacks and females jennies. Offspring have the same names as horses (i.e., foal for either sex under one year, and colt and filly for males and females who are over one year old). Different species within the Equidae, or horse family can interbreed, however, their offspring are almost always sterile. A mule is the offspring of a jack, or male donkey, and a mare, or female horse. Though rarely successful, the offspring of a stallion (male horse) and a jenny (female donkey) is a hinny.

The Spanish brought burros to North America where they quickly became the chosen beast of burden of early prospectors, due to their sure-footedness. While many use the terms donkey and burro interchangeably, others call the smaller Mexican descendants burros, and their larger cousins, imported directly from Europe, donkeys.

Burros which were abandoned or ran away gave rise to feral burros in the Western range lands. Fortunately, these animals are now protected in New Mexico, where they are considered to be a living legacy. During drought conditions, herds are at risk, and are routinely thinned to preserve grazing. Roundups remove a percentage of the feral burros which are then auctioned to the public. Wild burros are clever and curious, making excellent pets when treated well and trained properly. Once trust has been established, they greatly enjoy the company of humans. ~Aimee

Read more about Taos, Santa Fe, and Northern New Mexico on Taos A to Z

Friday, December 23, 2011

Sunday is... Christmas Day

This is one of our favorite times of the year. We enjoy some peace and relaxation; some quiet time and some time to do the things we like to do. We love the music and the decorations, and the contemplation of the meaning of this season.

Whether you are a long-standing client and friend of Taos Unlimited, or you just happened upon our celebration of this part of New Mexico that we call home, my cousin Jean and I want to wish you and yours a Merry Christmas: with peace, joy, love, and the warmth of your family and friends around you. ~Aimee and Jean

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Recipe of the Month: Christmas Chile Jellies

The New Mexico state question is “Red or green?” Chile, that is. And if you want both, you enjoy your tamales “Christmas” style. It is only fitting that Christmas gift chile jelly should be Christmas style as well.


For Green Chile Jelly:
1 tbsp. (medium to hot, to taste) green chiles, chopped
1 cup mild green chilies, diced
1 medium green bell pepper, diced
1-1/4 cup white wine vinegar
5 cups jam sugar
1 ounce liquid pectin

For Red Chile Jelly:
3 red bell peppers, diced
2 cups of jam sugar
6 medium to hot red chilies
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1 ounce liquid pectin


Combine the chiles and pepper with the vinegar in a food processor. Process until pureed (about 3 minutes). Transfer the puree and sugar to a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat, skim the foam from the top and discard, then add the pectin.

Return to the heat and bring again to a hard boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and stir constantly for 5 minutes. As it cools, the jelly will begin to thicken. Pour it into clean, sterilized 8-oz. jars, leaving a 1/4” space at the top. Seal as desired.


Purchase fresh or frozen flame-roasted New Mexico chiles

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Museums of Taos, New Mexico: A Taos Unlimited Blog Series, Part 6

This is the sixth in a series of blog entries about the museums in Taos and the surrounding area.

Taos Art Museum and Fechin House
In 1927, Russian-born, internationally-known artist, Nicolai Fechin joined the growing number of artists moving to Taos. His home, now open to the public as the Taos Art Museum, is a testament to his prolific talent.

Designed and constructed circa 1927-1933, the structure is on the National Register of Historic Places. Considered an architectural masterpiece, it is filled with Fechin’s distinctly Russian, elaborate woodcarvings on doors, windows, furniture and art. Also on display are his drawings and paintings, as well as those by members of the Taos Society of Artists, Taos Moderns, and works by contemporary artists.

To read about the other museums in Taos, New Mexico, visit the Museums section on Taos Unlimited

Monday, December 12, 2011

Taos A to Z Excerpt: Farolito (or Luminaria)

The first luminarias in North America were bonfires of crisscrossed pinon boughs arranged in 3-foot high squares. The Pueblo Indians in New Mexico have long made these small fires outside their homes to light their way to church on Christmas Eve. Later luminarias were small paper lanterns made from colored paper brought to this continent from the Orient. Instead of hanging these delicate lanterns from trees or on wires, they were placed on the ground, on rooftops and along pathways. Today, the word farolito is used in Northern New Mexico, while luminaria is used in Central and Southern New Mexico. Contemporary farolitos are small brown paper bags, filled with an inch of sand that supports a candle. At Christmas time, New Mexico streets and rooftops are lined with these festive lights. ~Aimee

Read more about Taos, Santa Fe, and Northern New Mexico on Taos A to Z

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Big Blizzards Passed Us By

We were forewarned about two big blizzards that were coming our way early this month, but oddly enough, we didn’t get much more that a couple of days and nights of blowing snow (here on the plateau). It’s so cold, though, that the snow is staying on the ground.

That doesn’t mean they didn’t get a lot of snow dropped on the mountains, so rest assured that ski season will be a great success and very happy time for our visiting skiers and other winter sports enthusiasts.

Come visit Taos this winter!

Friday, December 2, 2011

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Around our home we don’t wait long at all to get everything decorated for the Holidays. The day after Thanksgiving, the boxes of Christmas ornaments and decorations come down from out of our closets and the Christmas CDs get their first spins of the season. It is a time that Aimee and I look forward to from the time of the first snow (sometimes as early October, depending).

This year, we each wanted to share a photo of some of our Christmas decorations.

Aimee’s cat, Sadie, nestles among a warm Christmas display in their living room.

The teapot cabinet in Jean’s dining room is all decked out for Christmas.

Happy Holidays! ~Jean and Aimee