Category Archives: Cattle Ranch Visit

Michael’s Kitchen Coffee Shop and Bakery | Taos, New Mexico

Need a place to eat but have a lot of picky eaters?


One person wants Mexican, one wants a burger and another wants breakfast? Michael’s kitchen is your place.

Want to grab dessert for after dinner tonight? Michael’s kitchen is your place.

Need a mid-morning coffee and pastry? Michael’s Kitchen is your place.

Don’t want to hassle meter parking in the Plaza? Michael’s Kitchen is your place. They have a parking lot right next door.

Want a sopapilla with your honey? Michael’s kitchen is your place.

Friendly, quick service? Michael’s Kitchen is your place.

Will you have to wait to be seated? Quite possibly! Michael’s kitchen has been around for over 30 years and they are known for their wide variety of delicious food. Many of the locals come here.

I have eaten here twice and both times the place was packed.


When you walk into Michael’s, you get a glimpse of the bakery items.


When you go to pay your bill, you get to walk right by the bakery counter, too! Say hi to Michael…that is him behind the counter. I took this picture on the way to the ladies room. I just happened to bring my camera along. I stopped at the bakery counter to take a few pictures when Michael offered me a glazed donut hole. I told him if I engaged in eating it that it might ruin my lunch after all I wasn’t suppose to be here…at the bakery counter….I was suppose to be using the facilities! But how can you tell this man no with that genuine smile and those eyes?! So I said, “Ok, thank you!” Thank you! Yum! Yum! I proceeded back to my table but did not share my encounter with the man behind the counter and the melt in my mouth glazed donut hole.




A selection of breads are made fresh daily. Hello carbs!



They have a full bakery down stairs where I am told they go through a ton of flour a week.


I ordered one chicken enchilada a la carte. It had shredded white meat chicken and onions inside. The red sauce had a little kick to it which was perfectly offset with the lettuce and tomatoes.


Mr. Rancher had biscuits and gravy. (You can see he wanted to dig in, I barely could sneak a picture.)



Whenever you have Mexican food in New Mexico, you get a sopapilla. Oh my!



Quite honestly sopapillas are an excuse to eat honey!



Lots and


lots and


lots of honey!


I shared one bite of my sopapilla with Mr. Rancher…only because I wanted to take a picture of the honey oozing out into the delectable pastry. You see he didn’t get a sopapilla with his meal because he didn’t order Mexican food!

While we were waiting for our lunch to be served, I watched Michael as he stopped to visit with customers, clear dishes and carry buckets of dirty dishes to the back. He smiled at customers and asked how they were doing.

Then the next encounter with Michael happened…

He stopped by our table. The three of us started some small talk. Found out we had all grown up near each other in Los Angeles. He has friends that live close to us in Northern California. We shared about Mr. Rancher’s place in New Mexico and how we had come here once before and were anxious to be back here again.

Michael left and we devoured our food. Michael walked by a few times awhile I was trying to get Mr. Rancher to take the perfect photo of my honey laden sopapilla. He only smiled and continued to his chores of greeting customers and cleaning up dirty dishes. I thought, “What a great manager, not afraid to work. What a great owner, engaging with customers!”


The waitress brought our check…


Oh my…

Michael came over to our table did a little tap on it with his fingers and said, “Wait here, I’ll be back in a minute.”


And this…

This is what he came back with.

He said, “Enjoy! This is on me. This is what I always make for my granddaughter.” OMG it was so good! We enjoyed every bite. We enjoyed every single calorie!



A sneak peak at the kitchen….


Say hi to Michael…What did I tell you about his smile?! And those eyes! The goatee…just enough of ruggedness! I think men with a graying goatee are very attractive!

Woops sorry….Nothing wrong with us middle aged moms looking and admiring though…right?! Men have done if for years! Us women, we just do it without being caught…now you caught me!

Oh…back to Michael’s Kitchen.



I know these pictures don’t do justice since they were taken behind a glass. Thank God for the glass between those pastries and me. They are just too tempting. Don’t you just want to take your finger and swoop through that cream cheese frosting?


Or eat the top part of that donut with maple icing? I love maple icing! I love maple icing! My daddy always brought me home a donut with maple icing on it when I was a little girl!


This is where you pay your bill for all the goodies you ate or are bringing home with you. Did I tell you that you have to walk past the bakery counter on your way to paying your bill?

Michael planned that, didn’t you Michael?!

You planned that we had to walk by all those yummy bakery items when we walked out of your restaurant.

You planned that, didn’t you?

Did you plan for me to meet with my trainer for extra sessions after patronizing your restaurant?

Did you plan for me to eat those cookies we bought for a friend on the way home?

Did you plan for us to tear into those apple fritters in the morning before we could get them to our friend who we bought them for?

Did you Michael?



I almost missed these…



These were in a counter around the corner.



I didn’t see them until after we paid our bill. Guess it gives me an excuse to come back again. Did I tell you how much I love chocolate pie?

I think I will be dreaming of this place tonight!

Dreaming of sugar plums dancing in my head.
California City Slicker aka Pam

California City Slicker Participates in Branding at New Mexico Ranch

If you are going to go to a cattle ranch, you might as well make the best of it and do as the cowboys do!
Cowboys use a branding iron to brand and hold down the calf the old fashion way.

That is what I did! There is a few things I can tell you about cowboys:

  • Cowboys have the best manners
  • Cowboys respect their elders
  • Cowboys are handsome
  • Cowboys are hard workers
  • Cowboys will do anything to help out their fellow cowboys
  • Cowboys look good in their cowboy hats
  • Cowboys are not afraid to get down and get dirty
  • Cowboys are stronger then you think!

Cowboys dressed in chaps, spurs and cowboy hat ready to round up cattle at ranch.

The truck and the horse help the cowboy round up cattle
The rancher in the truck honks the horn and the cows follow! Modern Day Cowboy!

The cattle are all brought into the pins. The rancher driving the truck leads the way awhile she honks the horn. The cattle know when they hear the horn that they will soon be served their
special treat of cake.

mama cows are then seperated from the baby calves
Mama Cows are separated from their calves during branding time.

The mama cows are separated from their calves during branding. It is hard enough to hold down a 250-300 pound calf! If the mamas stayed they would be protecting their babies. Throughout the next few hours the mama cows are right outside of the pins crying for their young ones!

Getting the inoculation gun ready.
I will do this to a cow but please don't ask me to do it to a person!
Cowboy gets calf down by himself!
Yes, you did get him down all by yourself! Yes, you did pick the smallest one!

Before we got started with the branding process, this cowboy showed off his muscle! Of course, he did pick the smallest calf from the herd! hee hee Yes, you will do fine in the Army! (He just enlisted!)

The cowboys brand, cut and inoculate.
The cowboys do their thing...awhile I watch and take pictures.

I observe and take pictures awhile the cowboys do their thing before I decide to turn my camera over and get down and dirty with the cows!

Cowboy ropes the calf from his horse
How does he do that?

Cowboy ropes cattle awhile the mama cows watch in the background.
The mama cows in the background are not happy that they are separated from their babies.

rancher dehorns the steer
Mr. Rancher, I wanted my horns!
Rancher puts tag on heifer calf.
All heifer calves are ear tagged with a number. It is kind of like piercing your ears!

The only thing this rancher did was tag the ears of the heifers. I think he was a little surprised when I got in there and did the holding, inoculations, tagging, and branding. So I handed him my camera!!

cowboy ropes cattle on white and brown horse
You are still a good roper! Check out the Mama cows in the background--they are crying out for their baby calves.
I hold down the cattle for branding.
Who is going to clean my boots? YUK!
City slicker uses branding iron on calf.
Let's just say the smoke doesn't smell very good! Glad the wind is blowing away from me!

Cowboys show City Slicker how to hold down the calf.
You want me to what?

You want me to sit on him? With all my weight? Do you know how much I weigh? And you want me to hold its leg back tight and lose to his body at the same time? Really? Ok, I will do my best!

homemade pies
Can rancher women cook?!!!

After all those burned calories, we head back to the Cattle Rancher’s home for a feast! Oh, and what a feast it was! It ended with these home made pies! Yum!

Chow time!

Rhubarb and Apricot homemade pie! I will take a slice of each, please! I earned it!

Thanks for stopping by….
I hope you are enjoying my stories from the ranch through my eyes as a California City Slicker.Pam

Middle aged mom holding down backside of calf during branding

California City Slicker Video Blog | Yes, She Holds, Brands, Inoculates and Tags!

Yes, I did it!

I participated in branding, inoculating and ear tagging the calves!

No, I didn’t just take pictures!

Does she make the bull calf into a steer?

No, I didn’t make any bull calves into steers!

No, I didn’t get pooped on!

Yes, I have to admit I had fun!

Yes, I got dirty.

Yes, I would do it again!

Thanks to the cowboys in the video that were so patient with me! I actually think they were a little surprised when I said I wanted to participate, after all…I am old enough to be their mother! OUCH!

Want to join me next time? They can always use extra hands out there on the cattle ranch in the middle of no where with no Starbucks, no shopping, no nail salons, no girlfriends, ummmmm WHY was I out there??

Giddy up!

Enjoy the ride!

A California City Slicker aka Middle Aged Mom aka Pam

Hey, Y’all come back! I still have more City Slicker stories to tell!

California City Slicker Discovers an Ant Hill

I know, I know! An ant hill!

I did! I disovered many ant hills. I discovered this one that I recorded when I was out on a hike. I spent a good twenty minutes watching this ant hill as the ant tried to get its food into the hole.

I discovered another ant hill the day before when I was watching the cattle eat hay and I was taking pictures. I discovered it because the ants got in my boot, up my pants and in my socks. I must have kneeled on it when I was trying to take pictures. Woops! You know what? Those little ants bite!

So the moral of the story, if you are going to sit down, kneel down or squat down and you are out in the middle of no where, you need to look what is underneath you!

Life on the ranch…a simple life…some may call boooorrrrrrring. I just enjoy each moment!

Untill we meet again…

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