Monday, September 29, 2008
shrimp with bousin, basil, and prosciutto
egg and potato omelet
lemon chicken (visually unappealing but tasted OK)
smoked salmon blinis
prosciutto and manchego/Parmesan wrapped in phyllo dough
baked tomato nests (which sound much better than the name implies...)
blanched almonds (which I forgot to put out...)
Our friends brought wine and homemade nectarine pie and focchia bread. All very good. We ended up sitting at the table and lingering a little longer than anticipated so as to not get a chance to play our newly gifted version of Cranium, but another time.
The kitchen didn't fare too well, but after 2 loads in the dishwasher and many rounds of hand washing, it's finally looking back to normal.
My Aunt would have been proud. I pulled out the Polish dishes (even the Espresso cups) and used these at dinner.
All in all a wonderful night of visiting and enjoying a meal together. Can't wait to do it again - although I'll probably be a little less ambitious on the number of things I try and tackle....
Sunday, September 21, 2008
I took a deep dive and really gave away A LOT of clothes. 4 bags worth. Make that 4 large plastic bags worth. They all went to St. Vincent DePaul so that someone can get a second use out of them. Many of these pieces held lots of memories, which is perhaps why I was holding on to them. There was the rain jacket I wore all through Grad school. Ithaca had it's fair share of rain, but it was starting to look a little ragged and needed to go to the "give pile." I finally gave up (to the dust bin I'm afraid) my favorite pair of black sketcher type shoes. However, the while trim was now a dull brown and the soles were splitting from the rest of the shoes. I always tell myself I'm going to buy 2 pair of my favorite shoes and keep the 2nd in reserve. So far I haven't quite done it. Perhaps now I will.
E did his fair share of thinning out his stuff too. We also tackled the garage a couple of weekends ago. We finished unpacking the last of the boxes. I need to figure out how/what to do with all the childhood mementos, travel trinkets, and other assorted items (ribbons, charms, stamps, etc) that we've each compiled in separate boxes. Each is rather a mismash of things thrown haphazardly into a Rubbermaid bin and stored on the shelf. Perhaps one day when I have some down time I'll start to organize those.
We pulled out items to sell and need to get other items put up and away (hanging the bikes). I found a few more items I hadn't seen in several years, as they were packed up and squirreled away in our old house (less than 1/2 the size of our new place) and hadn't see the light of day since VA.
I've already started moving some of the pictures around the house. I think in our zeal to move in and make it feel like "home," we put things up on the walls perhaps a bit too soon. Now that we've had a bit of time to reflect, we've been playing musical walls. It's just a nice feeling to know that they are our walls. If we put a hole or two in them, it's not like we'll loose our deposit.
What a difference a little piece of paper like a deed makes.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
2 large cans of baked beans (variety of your choosing)
1 lbs of ground beef
dash of onion powder
1-2 tbsp of worshishire (sp?) sauce
1-2 tbsp of BBQ sauce
~12 fresh biscuits (or canned if you're low on time)
2-3 c. of cheddar cheese
Brown the meat. Sprinkle in onion powder and a little salt and pepper to taste. Drain the meat. Pour meat into large casserole dish. Dish in BBQ and worshishire (sp?) sauce. Stir in the 2 cans of beans. Stir in about 1/2 of the cheese. Cover the dish and bake at 350 for about 30 min or so or until the mixture is hot and bubbly. Take out of the oven and place the biscuits on top. Place on half of the remaining half of cheese. Bake until biscuits are browned and cook through (~12-15 min). Take out of the oven and immediately sprinkle on the rest of the cheese.
Pure comfort food heaven.
It was fortunate that I made it on Sunday, as I started feeling crummier as the week went on -- nursing along a cold compounded by allergies. The sagebrush or something equally evil is blooming and taking aim at my head.
We post-poned our anniversary celebration until later this week. Thanks to all for the well wishes. Two years has just flown by!
Monday, September 8, 2008
Two words...I hurt. Yes, as in I am sore. We played tennis, baseball, golf, boxing (we both got a little winded), and even bowling. What fun. It was especially fun playing one another. We had a blast. If only all exercise was this fun.
The Wii fit board lets you enter in fitness goals...I think I'll like the aerobics. Jury is still out on the yoga.
We'll let you know how it goes....
Sunday, September 7, 2008
By the time we returned, we noticed they were still on and most of the water had runoff to the sidewalk. YIPES! I started playing with the system and was completely flummoxed. I started out checking basic things: battery, fuse, and power source. All of which were snake eyes. I then tried playing with the program. I switched from one zone to another zone, but the water in the front would not desist.
Finally, my lovely wife called our lawn care service representative--who incidentally was also heading out for church--and he suggested shutting off the water main to the irrigation system until someone could show up to troubleshoot the problem.
Later that morning, I returned after washing the car and saw a car pull up to our place. Sure enough, the visitor was one of the guys from the company we have caring for our lawn. I described the situation to him and he diagnosed it right away: clogged filters. We went to the side of our house, and he lifted up two plastic covers from the side of the house, scooped out some thick, dusty residue off a water main filter. We then flicked the water back on and VOILA, it worked.
I thanked him for coming out on a Sunday and helping us. He probably thought we were king sized dweebs!
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Hug Point State Park
Hug Point State Park -- another self portrait
Viewpoint along road to Tillamook
Caught in the rain at Haystack Rock
Ecola State Park
We took a drive down south of Cannon Beach (again - but a little farther) past Tillamook to the "Three Capes Scenic Drive." Cape Lookout was by far the prettiest and came complete with a lighthouse tour. I sat that one out and E took the stairs to the top. Cape Mears was also quite pretty, with a long trail out to the ocean. The final cape was crowded and just not very scenic at all. We felt a little cheated out our third cape. Really overdeveloped and not too well preserved.
Cape Lookout State Park
Cannon Beach at Sunset
E in the lighthouse at Cape Lookout State Park
We spent our final full day heading north to Seaside and Astoria. We went to both Fort Clatsop/Lewis and Clark National Park and Fort Stevens. At Fort Stevens, we saw the point where the Columbia River and the Pacific Ocean meet - quite amazing. The Lewis Clark Nat'l Park had the guides in period costume. We saw an interesting talk by one of the docents discussing the last few months of the trek there in Oregon until the final completion of the journey. We explored the park a bit before we headed back.
We slept in until 7:30 our final morning (believe or not a luxury to sleep that late) and wandered down one last time to Haystack Rock. Murphy's Law -- the last day you are somewhere and just about ready to leave -- the weather is amazing. We took a few final shots before we headed back home.
Our final morning in Cannon Beach
Not wanting to say goodbye....
We're already planning our next adventure....