Wednesday, July 29, 2009

New Recipe - You Gotta Make This!

Two recipes in two days...trying to make up for the weeks when I forgot to post one. This is another pasta-type recipe, but totally different from my mom's macaroni salad. This one has an Asian flair. Run, don't walk, to your nearest high-end market and get the ingredients. I suppose you could use linguine noodles if you can't find the soba noodles, but I believe soba has more nutrition and they seem to have more body. You won't regret it...this is easy and delicious!

Cold Soba Salad

8 to 12 oz soba noodles (a buckwheat noodle packaged like spaghetti)
2 T. soy sauce
2 T. rice vinegar
2 T. sesame oil
2 T. sesame seeds
dash fresh ground pepper

You can cook a lot of noodles or fewer...just adjust the other ingredients. The package I bought (at Clarks, for those of you in my neighborhood) had three 3-oz packets inside and I used them all. Break noodles in half and cook in about 8 cups of rapidly boiling, salted water for 5 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water. When drained, mix with remaining ingredients, tossing well. Store in airtight container in refrigerator, tossing again before serving. These are so cool and flavorful...I could eat them as the entree! Post a comment if you have a question or want to share your opinion. As always, enjoy!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Summer Survival

It is hot. It is damn hot. If you are like me, you don't want to turn on the oven or slave in the kitchen. So, here is a remedy for the heat: my mother's recipe for Macaroni Salad. Sounds simple, and it is, but it is my absolute favorite. Give it a try, and let me know what you think!

Mom's Macaroni Salad

1 large bag pasta (we like shells)
1 jar sweet pickles
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 larger can sliced olives, drained
about 2/3 cup mayonnaise
about 1/3 cup ranch dressing
1 T. mustard
salt and pepper to taste
dried Italian herbs - I like the "pasta sprinkles" from

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse in cool water and allow to sit. Cut up as many sweet pickles as you want - we use a lot and cut them into chunks. In a large bowl, place drained pasta and diced pickles. Add shredded cheddar (my mom cuts a cheddar brick into small cubed pieces) and drained olives. Stir together. Add mayo, ranch dressing, mustard, salt and pepper, and herbs (a sprinkling of oregano, parsley and basil - if you don't have it, skip it). Stir together and decide if you think it needs more mayonnaise or mustard - it should be wet and held together, but not soupy. Put into airtight container and keep in the refrigerator. Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I Made This!

During the summer I spend much less time thinking about school, and much more time thinking about my hobbies and crafts. I end up trying to do something creative every day. Some days I succeed, some days I don't. Today I did. I decided I wanted to to a bit with cross-hatch shading and color shading, so I decided to draw some trees. Sheila liked it so much she insisted I post it. So, here is my shading exercise for the day...

Friday, July 17, 2009

For Better, For Worse...In Sickness and In Health

Walt bought a plant...a fake plant. It is from Japan. You are supposed to talk to it and nurture it and it responds. The video you are about to see is my fifth attempt to film him talking to this damn plant (the first four video attempts ended in my laughing hysterically). I guess this is what happens when someone stays home every day, and possibly spends too much time outside in the heat. Just remember...those marital vows we took twenty years ago apply to mental health, too, I suppose, and I'm sure Walt could blog all the crazy things I do in my own home (even though nothing I do is as wacky as this video).

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Thanks for commenting (now that we got the commenting glitch fixed). As for those of you who wonder about the polka dot pajamas...they belong to my mom. We brought our Doc Martin's back to the hotel and my parents (all ready for bed) tried them on for a photo opportunity we still giggle at. So those feet, and those pajamas, belong to my parents...the shoes belong to Walt and me!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Favorites from England February 2000

We took my parents to England in February 2000. While it was cold and rainy, it will always believe it was the best decision Walt and I ever made, because my dad really wanted to experience the UK, and he died two months after this trip. I wish we could have done more, perhaps visiting Ireland as well, but we accomplished a lot in a very physical trip. I am eternally glad we went.

Here are the four of us enjoying London and Windsor:

Monday, July 13, 2009

This is only a test...

We have made some adjustments to the way comments are handled. This should hopefully take care of the problems that some people were having. Please feel free to post comments. And please let us know if you continue to have problems.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Just For The Fun Of It!

Just for fun, take a moment and try this...leave your results in my "comments" section.

Grab the book nearest you. Right now.
* Turn to page 56.
* Find the fifth sentence.
* Post that sentence in my comments section. Read other people's sentences, too.
* Don't dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST book....

Friday, July 10, 2009

Favorites From France

Next, here are some of our scanned favorites from earlier trips to France, including World War II sites in Normandy, downtown Paris, Disneyland Paris, and some of our trips on the Eurostar. We travel first class on the Eurostar, which includes really uppity dinners, like foie gras and all-you-can-drink champagne (the last picture was taken on my birthday, and I have enjoyed a bit too much of the free champagne!).

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Favorite Travel Photos

While we are not traveling this summer, we are finding the time to scan older photos we took before the digital camera age. There are a lot of them from many countries, so we will post the shots of Ireland first (including a shot of my mom drinking a beer at the Guinness Gravity Bar!). Actually, I just noticed that most of these photos involve alcohol. Notice the sideways photo of me (sorry about that) when I was doing the required course-work to get my Official Irish Whiskey Taster certificate!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

There's A New Kid In Town

As you know, we had to put two of our beloved kitties to sleep: Renfield on April 30 and Hugh on June 24. We had no desire for a new cat. We were going to say "no" to anyone offering kittens. However, a friend asked if I would take a 13-year old female cat whose owner was diagnosed with COPD. I said "YES"! What made me do that? When I called Walt, he said "yes" too! Somehow it felt completely right. So, without any further ado, I'd like to introduce sweet-as-pie Evey (previously named "Violet" but now named "Evey" after the character in V for Vendetta):