Wednesday, June 28, 2006

finally...a vacation

Tomorrow we're loading up the car and heading towards New Jersey. We'll be visiting family and spending lots of tourist time in the the city.

Thanks to a very good friend (and her generous wedding present) on our way home we'll be stopping for a few nights in Connellsville, PA to have our first B&B experience.

Have a happy and safe 4th of July!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Your Birthdate

Your Birthdate: January 22

You tend to be understated and under appreciated.

You have a hidden force to do amazing things, doing them your own way.

People may see you as strange and shy, but they know little.

Your unconventional ways have more power than they (and even you) know.

Your strength: Standing up for what you know is true

Your weakness: You tend to be picky and rigid

Your power color: Silver

Your power symbol: Square

Your power month: April

Friday, June 23, 2006


I took these a few days ago...before all the rain started.

4 of the 6 tomato plants have babies on them.

The hydrangea bush is just about to explode.

This is a "weed" that's growing in our honeysuckle.
*thank you Gloria for identifying my "weed" as a Sweet Pea!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

first ATC swap

I finally put together my "Fairy Tales and Fables" ATCs and envelope last week. They were even mailed out a few days early! Now, I'm anxiously waiting to see what I get in return :)

Participants were instructed to make any kind of an mailart envelope so I decided to keep up my personal theme of atlas envelopes. I recently aquired quite a lot of old atlases and have been thinking about them a lot and using them for many little projects. It's interesting to match swap recipients up with their respective atlas pages. I get to find out where exactly these swap strangers live.

So here's my first ever attempt at making ATCs and my mailart envelope:
envelope front
envelope back

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Strawberry Cobbler

Lucky me! Someone very sweet gave me a quart of strawberries the other day. They are one of my favorite things about summer. I wanted to make a classic strawberry shortcake but found a cobbler recipe in The Best Light Recipe. Instead of using 2 STICKS of butter, this only called for 3 tablespoons. There's some corn meal in the batter which really gave it a great little crunch and sweetness. A few bites out of the pie pan was my breakfast yesterday morning!
strawberry cobbler

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

My Tuesday night Culinary Adventure

I went to Legacy Village. I don't really like going there; it makes me feel like such a consumer. But when my iPod breaks or I need to look at pretty furniture the need must be met!

Anyways, Tuesday my need was to attend the Michael Ruhlman book signing at Joseph-Beth. We arrived a bit early. It didn't seem like the crowds were pouring in so we got a cup of coffee and I read about celebrity babies. Close to 7pm people started gathering in the signing area and Ruhlman decided since it was such a small crowd we should just go to the bar. Ok!

We pulled chairs together to form a circle and ordered some drinks. At first it was a bit intimidating – sitting there with a group of self proclaimed foodies and a local food author/celebrity.

Then he looks at me and asks – Why did you come tonight? What did you like about my book? Or something similar to that, I can’t really remember because I was totally panicking.

Um, well, I haven’t actually read any of your books. Ha ha ha. I met you at the Chili Cook-Off and read somewhere that you were having this book signing…

I = Loser

He was really nice didn’t give me a hard time about it at all – thank God.

The conversation started off a little slow but by the end of the hour there were about 10 people talking over each other about making corned beef or kielbasa from scratch, how much they hate or admire Rachel Ray and who’s actually eaten at The French Laundry. Yes, he was the only one.

I found it very ironic that as we walked back to our car there were crowds, tons, lots! of people sitting outside, on the restaurant patios, having dinner. They all seemed to be enjoying the weather and their cheesecake or pasta, but they could have been experiencing a genuine culinary event, just a few doors away. I actually felt lucky that not many showed up – that’s what made the whole environment and conversation so intimate and enjoyable.

If you don't have any of his books either you can ready Ruhlman's article from last Sunday's NY Times Magazine - he was delighted that his name was listed on the cover! Also his newest book "The Reach of a Chef," was reviewed in the NY Times Book Review (special food edition) 2 weeks ago.


Photo Documentary on using a ChickCAN Beer Can Chicken Rack.

Product Description: Are you ready for Beer Can Chicken?! Our ChickCAN rack will hold beer and bird steady while your beer can chicken cooks to a moist seasoned perfection. Includes cooking directions. (usefull things like - don't touch the can because the can and the beer are HOT and don't get too wasted and catch something on fire)

Put beer and chicken on rack, and plug with a potato keep her juicy! Hey, she's looking pretty happy here. Wave to the camera!
Grill on indirect heat from 1.5 - 2 hrs
See you in a bit birdie.
OMG! Has it already been 2 hrs? Oh, wait I think it's been more like 3 hrs!
Oh honey, your potato head is burning!
Poor little chicken that literally fell off the can, burned in half. NOT juicy at all :(

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Memorial Day

This week has been really busy at work and I have not had a minute to update this little blog. The weekend has finally arrived and I have a minute to post about last weekend when we celebrated Memorial Day.

Saturday was the Great Lakes Fiber Show.
Lots of alpacas, llamas, bunnies, yarn and fiber to see. I bought 2 skeins of yarn to add to my growing stash - I need to start using the yarn instead of buying more. I think these guys look like they're wearing helmets or something. They have the most beautiful eyelashes!

Sunday we cooked out at our house. I made a summer vegetable pasta salad and my friend made a gorgeous mint julep tray - we drank and played bocce ball (in our tiny backyard) into the wee hours of the night.

Monday we went to my in-law's house for more bbq, bocce and the added bonus of slip-n-sliding with protective sunglass goggles!