Monday, December 10, 2007

girls weekend

Last weekend I spent walking, eating, shopping and people watching in New York City with my friend Erin. We drove out on Thursday and stayed with my in-laws for the weekend. Here are some highlights...

Noah's Bagel giant breakfast sandwiches
some stroller research at Buy Buy Baby
drooling over bolts of fabric in the Garment District
everything at the Momofuku Noodle Bar
shopping at Pearl River, Pearl Paint, Muji, CB2
shish kebabs, mashed potatoes and good conversation at the Olive Tree Cafe
a red velvet cupcake and cashew bar from Amy's

super cinnamon bagels
Amy Sedaris and the Bust Craftacular show
having Cupcake Cafe cupcakes before lunch, because we were on vacation
Union Square Market
sharing a pastrami and corned beef on rye from Toasties
Rockefeller Center packed during the holiday season
splitting a gyro from the Halal Foods cart kindly suggested to me by Christine
drinking coffee and taking a break in Times Square
eating take out Indian and falling asleep during the explosive Die Hard

being driven home while listening to episodes of This American Life and the Savage Love Podcast
feeling baby kicks
coming home to a huge surprise...a freshly painted nursery!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

should you send it?

This may come in handy for people after the holidays.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Um, yuck!

Found at the Unusual Life...a toilet themed-restaurant! Would you eat there? I am curious about the menu.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Holiday Ornament Swap

I participated in this swap last year and received some really fun things in the mail. Sign-ups end tomorrow - click here to get all the info.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

what's going on?

  • Masumi shows are up at the Akron Art Museum, CSU, MOCA and (next weekend) Spaces.
  • Next Tuesday John Waters is speaking at EJ Thomas Hall.
  • Articles like this in the Plain Dealer are annoying. I know it's the travel section but shouldn't the local paper be urging us to spend money in our city?
  • Alton Brown's meatloaf recipe is good but next time I would cut down on the garlic cloves.
  • Last night I was home alone and realized that I wasn't really "alone" anymore. I have an ultrasound Monday morning...can't wait to see what's going on in there.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Pumpking Carving 2007


Last Saturday night we had our Pumpkin Carving Party - about 40 people came, lots of pumpkins were carved and my little brothers' band performed their first live gig. I was so nervous for them, and proud at the same time. Oh, they were so cute! I think the guests had a good time but what the heck is with people leaving before 11pm? Are we just getting old or boring? I know some had kids to pick up from babysitters and I think some had other places to go. It just bums the hosts out when we put all this work into having a party and there is TONS of beer left over. At least they ate up all the crock pots of chili.



Thursday, October 25, 2007

star struck

I've had a really star studded week so far. Last Sunday night my husband, brother and his girlfriend went to Lolita to have dinner and watch The Next Iron Chef. Michael Symon was there...just walking around, chatting & laughing with people. How hard it must be for him to keep such the secret of who is the winner! We sat at the round table, directly in front of the t.v. and had a really fantastic time.
Last night we went to CCPL's first Writers Center Stage event with Ira Glass and David Rakoff. David performed a piece about his childhood while Ira spun records. Then they were interviewed and the audience asked some questions. A high school freshman asked for some advice on getting into the business. Ira said just keep writing and coming up with ideas. He said that about 50% of the work is coming up with something to write about.

This week's big baby news - Monday I had a doctors appointment and we got to hear our baby's heartbeat! I also have started wearing maternity clothes.

We're having our Pumpkin Carving Party this Saturday so I have been really busy this week getting thing ready for that. I made 3 crock pots full of chili this morning!

Friday, October 19, 2007

world series food roundup

Apartment Therapy : The Kitchen linked to some PD articles here in their food roundup this week.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

dr. roizen

Last night Dr. Roizen gave a lecture at Tri-C East Corporate College. It was probably the closest thing I'll ever get to being on an episode of Oprah. The doctor was very charming, a great speaker and was happy to inform the audience that his real age is about 20 years younger than his 62 - he looked great! He talked a little bit about his website -which just informed me that my real age is 3 more than my actual years on Earth!
I found the most interesting part of the evening to be when he listed the ingredients that we should avoid in foods and suggested we throw away anything that has them listed as one of the top 5 ingredients on the label. I went home and looked at my 100% whole wheat bread and saw that the 2nd ingredient listed is sugar! Throw it away? After a few minutes I realized that I could very quickly empty my kitchen of food. I see that I have a lot of reading to do during my next trip to the grocery store.
The book signing went fast - there were probably only about 50 people at the event. I laughed out loud at what he wrote in my copy of "You On a Diet"'s a bit ironic, considering my present state :)
Holly -
May you have the waist you always wanted.
Dr. Roizen

Monday, October 08, 2007

Where has my brain been?

Why have I not blogged in ages (again)?

I've been working a ton? No, that's usually not kept me from blogging in the past.

I've done nothing interesting in the past month? Um, what happened during that weekend in Chicago?

I've discovered something that's consumed a lot - no ALL - of my thoughts? Yes..I've found out that I am pregnant!

Due to morning sickness, lack of energy in the evenings and the late summer temperatures -it's supposed to be 90 degrees today! - I just about stopped cooking completely for the months of August and September. We ate out a lot or resorted to bowls of cereal. I hope to start making dinners in our kitchen again very soon and bringing lunch to work. I can only eat so many cups of soup and saltines from the cafeteria.

And here's the proof...

Thursday, August 30, 2007

One month later...

and not much has been going on. We're going to Chicago this weekend so I'll surely have some good pictures next week.

I could post about beautiful CSA veggies but they would just be my depressing reminders of wastefulness. Poor veggies! I am thinking of not joining next year - it's just too much.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

CSA Weeks 2, 3 & 4


I wasn't able to post anything about weeks 2 & 3 but you can read about the deliveries and some good book revies at The Atomic Librarian Book Review Blog.

Week 4

red potatoes
patty pan squash
flat italian beans
yellow tomato
green pepper

What have I been doing with all of this produce? We've been just snacking on a lot of things - especially the cukes and pickles. The yellow tomato and basil, from the other week, was made into a caprice salad and I used the pecans to make a Pecan Bundt that was devoured in 3 days.

Zucchini, Sausage, and Feta Casserole

Pork Coconut Curry

Saturday, July 14, 2007

librarians @ Ingenuity

From the CPL Fine Arts Blog....

Look for the Roving Reference Librarians working the crowds next weekend at the Ingenuity Festival from 12-6 on Saturday and Sunday. We'll be easy to spot with tablet PCs and bright blue t-shirts emblazoned with the slogan "Ask a Librarian." The Cleveland Public Library table will be in the CSU College of Urban Affairs building as part of the Family Pavilion. More info on Ingenuity here:

Thursday, June 28, 2007

CSA week 1

Due to the hot/dry weather the Covered Bridge Gardens CSA started 2 weeks early! A little newsletter called The Nibbler will accompany our produce each week - it has farm news and recipes in it. And starting next week we will be getting everything in cloth bags.

So what did we get?

Red Butter Head Lettuce
Green Onions
Shelling Peas
Snow Peas
Pecandoarosa Pecans (from their trees in Arizona)

Monday, June 25, 2007

Scallops, Scampi-Style

Since I have been working a lot of evenings, I have also been putting together a lot of late night dinners (that require a very small amount of time, effort and imagination). That being said, I have been totally bored with our food options. Most nights we eat veggie burgers, bowls of pasta, tuna/turkey sandwiches, cereal or something grilled. I don't remember the last time I even used a recipe. Last Friday I had the day off and was totally excited because I had time to go shopping and cook a real dinner which we ate at the dining room table! I even purchased 2 new white dishes for the occasion (food photography tip #1 from AT: The Kitchen).

This recipe is from Good Housekeeping. It claims to be "Healthy in a Hurry" - taking 15 min of prep and 8 min to cook. It took more like 30 min to prep but it still was very simple. I was surprised how nice the squash shavings cooked up in the pan and the lemon juice finished it off perfectly.

Scallops, Scampi-Style
serves 4

1 c. whole wheat couscous
1 1/4 lbs. sea scallops (12)
1 lemon
1 clove garlic, crushed with press
4 zucchini or yellow summer squash (8 oz each), or 2 of each
1 Tbs. olive oil

1. Prepare couscous as label directs.
2. Meanwhile, pull off and discard tough crescent-shaped muscle, if any, from each scallop; rinse to remove sand from crevices. Pat scallops dry.
3. From lemon, grate 1 tsp peel and squeeze 2 Tbs juice.
4. In bowl, toss scallops with garlic, 1/2 tsp peel, 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper.
5. With vegetable peeler, slice each squash lengthwise into ribbons until you reach core with seeds; discard core. Set ribbons aside.
6. In nonstick 12-inch skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add scallops and cook 5-6 minutes, until browned and just opaque throughout, turning over once; transfer scallops to plate. Add squash to same skillet. Reduce heat to medium; cover and cook 2 minutes, stirring once. Uncover and cook 1 minute or until tender-crisp. Remove squash from heat; stir in lemon juice and remaining peel.
7. Spoon vegetable mixture onto 4 plates; top with scallops. Serve with couscous.

Thursday, June 14, 2007


My friends Erin & Matt have been especially good friends lately. Why? They have a huge cable tv!!! More importantly they have invited us over the past week to watch the Cavs games and the season premier of Top Chef on it! Hopefully this will be a weekly invitation ;) My favorites are Micah and CJ.

Very much looking forward to tomorrow. I don't have to work so in the afternoon I'm seeing Oceans Thirteen with my Friend T and then we're heading to Lolita. All the food people have been raving about their happy hour specials. That Kobe burger has been calling my name for a while now.

This morning on my way home from kickboxing (roundhouses are difficult!) I stopped at Chuppa's Market Place on Pearl Rd. It's a small market that has a pretty nice selection of produce (some organic), Michael's baked goods, cheese and a deli counter. I bought a bag of cherries - these are the most beautiful, juiciest cherries ever. Really they are! A perfect deep red, no blemishes, firm and not all sticky due to a few leaky/bad ones in the bag.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Brooklyn Centre Garden Party

I just talked to Gloria Ferris and reserved my tickets to the Brooklyn Centre Garden Party—“Magic, Mystery, and Millionaires.” That glass of lemonade sounds really refreshing.

Info from her website....

What do a librarian, a magician and a Broadway playwright have in common? They all lived in Cleveland and they’re all featured in this year’s Brooklyn Centre Garden Party—“Magic, Mystery, and Millionaires.” Come and see famous characters in Cleveland’s past portrayed by costumed narrators. Stroll through the grounds and see who’s who in our history. Enjoy musical entertainment in the Victorian Chapel, and relax in the shade with a glass of lemonade. Find out about Ohio’s native plants, make a mask with local artists, hear the latest about the Ohio and Erie Canal project, visit with our friends from the Zoo, and see what makes Riverside Cemetery one of Cleveland’s must-see places.

Ticket prices are as follows: Advance, $5 senior, $8 adult, $20 family of four; Day of Tour, $7 senior, $10 adult, $25 family of four. Call 216-351-0254 to reserve your tickets or for more information.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Olde Good Things

IMG_2877 IMG_2927

Over Memorial Day weekend we met up with one set of my in-laws in Scranton, Pa. No, not to visit Dunder Mifflin, but to go to an architectural salvage yard called Olde Good Things. This is the warehouse...they also have stores in NY, LA and Chicago. The amount of stuff there was overwhelming - rooms of furniture, doors, windows, hardware and sinks. Outside there were yards full of bathtubs, iron fencing and anchors. It was absolutely filthy and so much fun. Prices were not marked on anything so you had to find an employee and ask how much things were - which they seemed to make up on the spot and did not negotiate. I took many pictures...if you're interested in seeing them all click here.
IMG_2933 IMG_2948

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Fresh Stop

from the Art House website...

Support local farmers and local arts at Art House this summer!
Dates: June - October, 2nd & 4th Thursday
Time: 3-7 p.m. Price: FREE Art Workshops
$20- Regular Share Bag (Family & Couples)
$10 Half Share Bag (Single)
($10 for Low Income Regular Share Bag & $5 for Low Income Half Bag)
From June to October, Art House will partner with Councilman Brian Cummins' office and Fresh Stop farmer's market to provide the community with locally grown produce and FREE art workshops twice a month. Please call the Councilman's Office at 216-459-8400 to purchase your Share Bag today!

Monday, May 14, 2007

My five favorites

I am tagging myself on a meme from Hot Coffee Girl.

My Five Favorite Places to Eat Locally - the Cleveland Version...

Nate's Deli (1923 W. 25th St.) We usually go to Nate's at least once a week. Their rolled pita sandwiches are great and they have THE BEST hummus I've ever eaten. What' s nice is if you take someone there who's afraid to eat anything "new". They can order a good deli sandwich and all are happy!

Siam Cafe (3951 St. Clair Ave.) Open till midnight daily. Order the pad thai, vegetable curry, scallops, spring rolls, I could go on and on.

Superior Pho (3030 Superior Ave.) Great weekend lunch spot! The soup comes with a whole plate of stuff that you can add to you liking. Vietnamese sandwiches, cabbage salad and summer rolls are also hard to pass up.

Lolita (900 Literary Rd.) - I went there for my birthday and the meat slicer made me swoon. I must say it was very difficult to make a dinner choice - everything looked good!

Tastebuds (1400 East 30th St.) - Another great lunch spot. My favorites are the roasted, toasted and grilled salad or the hot chicken sandwiches. It's always super busy and really loud - I find it to be a very fun environment to break up my work day.

A few places I would like to try...

Parallax (2179 W. 11th St.)
Lola (2058 E. 4th St.)
Korea House (3700 Superior Ave.)
Chez Francois (Vermillion)
Bubba Q's (Avon)

Friday, May 04, 2007

A post about food

My friend and I are going to split a family share from the Covered Bridge Gardens CSA this summer. Another option, set up by the Lakewood Earth and Food Community (LEAF), is City Fresh. I had a hard time choosing which one to join and now I'm thinking I should have gone with City Fresh. Mainly because they're going to have a "fresh stop" at Art House, which is only minutes from my house. Oh, well. We're still highly anticipating our fresh veggies.

Tri-C is offering Community Cooking Classes this summer. So far I've signed up for the Regional Country Side Dishes. The menu is: Mussels with fennel; Coq au Vin; Mousse au chocolate crème brulee. To balance this I'm also taking a kick-boxing class!

A new Retro Recipe Challenge has been announced. It's called From Retro with Love. Directions: Whip up dish a with international flare, using a recipe first published before 1985. Anyone have a suggestion? Entries are due Sunday, June 3 at 11:59pm

Wednesday, May 02, 2007


Last weekend was spent in Charleston, SC where we attended a beautiful wedding, visited with friends, sat by the pool and enjoyed the sun for a few days.

What am I going to try to do this weekend?

Friday - Twilight Hike in the “Natural Flats” or help someone work on their nursery.

Saturday - art show at Bela Dubby and then the Art Extravaganza!

Sunday - the LAST school open house at my (and my mom's!) gradeschool - they're closing at the end of this year.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

the good

I always remember college as being fun. Yes, I worked a lot and missed my boyfriend but generally I thought it was a great time in my life. After reading an old journal that I kept as an undergrad (unfortunately, I believe it's the only journal I ever kept) I realized that's where I vented a lot of my frustrations. Apparently, I either forgot how hard it was or I was a drama queen with a pen. I know that writing helped me at the time but I was disappointed that I didn't document the positive things that were going on in my life.

The quote below is taken from one of my favorite blogs, Greek Tragedy. It's part of an entry where Stephanie writes about what she would say to her younger self today. I thought it was good advice and wanted to pass it on...

"Try to write about something other than the opposite sex or the fights you have with friends. I wish I knew, when I was younger, to write about the good in my friendships and family, to document the loving moments. Write about your relationship with your cousins, with your grandfather, with your parents. "

Thursday, April 12, 2007

kitty food

I would love to eat this cat food on my next flight!

Friday, April 06, 2007

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Chicago (a little late)

I met up with my friend Tricia in Chicago a few weeks ago - she is currently in Florida but moving to Chicago this summer! We had a really great weekend that included lots of fun stuff - massages, French food (escargot & rabbit), sangria, more drinks, a bit of history & some groovy pictures of Cloud Gate. One toddler was so mesmerized by his reflection in the bean that he ran his head right into it. Poor little guy!

As for my Megabus trip - it was pretty good for $40. We arrived in Chicago an hour late but were only 15 minutes late getting back to Cleveland. I had 2 seats to myself both ways and managed to avoid the bus restroom. The heat wasn't working on the way to Chicago so my feet were freezing. I think it really would have been terrible if you had to share a seat with a stranger for 7 + hours.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Monster by Mail

I just ordered a "hungry" mail monster.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

one month later....

My new niece, Addison Mary, was born Feb 23rd!

The Cleveland International Film Fest started - so far I've seen 4 movies. A Map for Saturday was really great - it's playing two more times this weekend.

St. Patrick's Day was fun. We went to a movie in the morning, the parade, Otto Moser's, Lincoln Park Pub and then came home for a nap. Later we went to dinner (for Mexican!) with some other friends.

I just got back late last night from Chicago. Will write more about my trip tomorrow.

Holly Golightly is playing at the Beachland tonight. I'm heading there straight after work. Tomorrow You Am I will be there - you can read about the Australian band's connection to Cleveland at the Beachland's website.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Retro Recipe Challenge #6 One-Egg Cake

Cupid at Home in the Kitchen, Michigan Stove Company, ca. 1910s, 32 p.
I found a really interesting project at the Duke University's Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library. It's called the Emergence of Advertising in America 1850-1920. It's basically a database of over 9,000 rare & historic advertising images. One part of the collection is called the Nicole Di Bona Peterson Collection of Advertising Cookbooks. This portion alone contains 1360+ images from 82 cookbooks published between 1878 - 1929. As technology advanced and women were cooking with things other than what they grew or made themselves cookbooks became huge forms of advertisements. You can read more about the history of advertising cookbooks here.

Since this is a Retro Valentine's challenge I chose a recipe from a book called Cupid in the Kitchen. It's an advertising cookbook put out by the Michigan Stove Company in the 1910's. The first few pages present a story of how Mrs. Potter (aka Cupid) uses her matchmaking skills with the lovely single Rose Bud and bachelor George Garland!

I made the recipe for a One-Egg Cake (click here for recipe). I chose this recipe for 2 reasons. If I were going to make a Valentine's Day cake I would want something special and a 2 layered cake just says "I took that extra step and used 2 pans to make this so I must really like you". Also I thought it would be fun to try out a recipe that has no directions. I used my best judgement and set the oven at 350 degrees, creamed the sugar and butter together and then alternately added the wet and dry ingredients. The only thing I didn't realize was that even though the recipe said that the cake "makes a good two layer cake" the batter was only enough for one layer. So I ended up with only one layer - but I still really like you! Being it was left in the oven a too long, the bottom and sides turned a dark crispy golden brown. The cake was very dense and almost gummy - it had a huge moist crumb and I thought it was too sweet. It was almost rustic - heavy like corn bread. I wonder if this is what a standard cake tasted like in the 1910s. Not bad, but far from what people expect a cake to taste like today. Check out the RRC #6 round up!

Cookbook images from:
Nicole Di Bona Peterson Collection of Advertising Cookbooks
Emergence of Advertising On-Line Project
John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising & Marketing History
Duke University Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library

Friday, February 09, 2007

This weekend

I have a lot of things planned for this weekend. Probably too many to actually get done, but we shall see.

Tonight : I'm going to see Matthew Barney : No Restraint at CMA. Some of my friends declined my invitation after reading the synopsis. Personally, I don't know how you could not be interested in seeing what Barney actually does with Bjork and 45,000 pounds of petroleum jelly. I viewed most of The Cremaster Cycle a few years back at the Cinematheque - they're movies that I still think about all the time and I'm sure this film will be something to remember as well.

Saturday: Work. Make my entry for the Retro Recipe Challenge #6 and head over the see the Dirty Bottom Boys play at the Beachaland Ballroom.
Sunday: IKEA ROAD TRIP!!! Looking for nightstand lamps and a short bookcase.
Also working on gathering materials for a little plant project. Mighty Girl has posted a set of photos and instructions here. I purchased one large glass jar from Target and don't know if I want to get 3 matching jars or go with an assortment. The idea is to place them on the window seat in our dining room - preventing me from using it as a catch all. Here's one of the photos from her flickr set...

Saturday, February 03, 2007


I made reservations on the Megabus to visit Chicago in March. If you've been on the bus I would love to hear about your experience.

My husband (then boyfriend) lived in Detroit for a year. Since my car was unreliable and I was in love I took the Dog every other weekend to visit him. For as bad as it was, I did come away with some interesting stories.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Braised Short Ribs

The Amateur Gourmet made these and posted the recipe with tons of photos (he attributes it to the Babbo Cookbook). I followed his lead and used a Chianti but made the full recipe that calls for 4 ribs. The only issue for me was the cooking time. After 2 hours in the oven the ribs were done, but they were not all falling off the bone. This may have been because the ribs were not all the same size - 2 were bigger and 2 were smaller. The first night I served the ribs with tomato gnocchi from Ohio City Pasta. The second night I skimmed off a lot of fat and used the leftovers (meat pulled off of the bones and added to pot) as a pasta sauce served over whole wheat bow ties.

Saturday, January 27, 2007


This past week I got emails from both of my blittle brothers, A & K, telling me they're going to be at the Beachland Ballroom tonight to see Uncle Scratch's Gospel Revival. K just called me to ask if we were going to be at the show. I found the communication very brothers don't really talk to me unless we happen to be at my parents' house at the same time. I sometimes think A took a vow of silence and K just has more interesting things to do than hang out with his weird sister...or so I thought!

I was not planning on going tonight but was interested to find out why they were extending the invitation.

h: Who else is going?
K: Me, A, a few other friends. A girl I'm supposedly seeing.
h: What!?! You have a new girlfriend?
K: Yeah, I guess. I'm sure you'll get along real well. You two are cut from the same cloth.
h: What the heck is that supposed to mean? That you're madley in love with her!!! lol

Friday, January 26, 2007

Retro Recipes

Laura Rebecca has her own blog full of recipes and in addition she hosts a Retro Recipe Challenge every month. This is the month for me to take on the challenge!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

I like you, I love Crab Cakes and I can't stop staring at my new dutch oven!

My husband took our friends and I out to a fabulous dinner at Lolita for a birthday last Saturday night (my real b-day was the 22nd). We had oysters with "love" sauce and boards of seafood, cheese and meat for appetizers. A warm spinach salad with a fried egg on top also arrived. Honestly, I had a very difficult time choosing my entree because they all looked so delicious. I happily ended up ordering short ribs with roasted red peppers and polenta. My friend's gnocchi was outstanding....pasta covered in a pulled pork and veal sauce. Creme brulee and a candle ended the feast. I can not rave enough about Lolita's food, staff and service. It's really fantastic.

I was also treated to dinner, cake and ice cream Sunday night at my in-law's house. My mother-in-law made a very interesting salad out of mushrooms, spinach, quinoa and feta. That will be on my list of things to make soon but first I must make use of my birthday presents - a few cook book and this beauty....

Friday, January 12, 2007

it's january?

I see it's been almost a month since I posted anything. The time just flew by. My vacation became an enjoyable break away from computers and work. I still managed to read some blogs over the past few weeks, but there are still many unread posts left on my blog roll.
I was afraid it would be difficult to start posting again. Should I try to do a recap of the last month? Post some pictures from Christmas? Nah, that sounds boring. So what I would like to write is that I spent most of the time going places, lunching, shopping, reading (books!), visiting with friends and family, watching t.v and I even made it to the movies yesterday! It was a blast! But today (sadly) I am at work and and trying to get back into the routine of things. For a while at least.