Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Royal Wedding - Wills & Kate

So where were you when Prince Charles and Lady Diana were married? It was thirty years ago folks. Really, it was! It doesn't seem possible that it was that long ago.

I was a freshman in high school. It was an early morning on that day too and the middle of the week no less. It was the talk of the day back then. Of course we know more about their relationship now than we did back then. Diana.....a local girl from an aristocratic family, no college and worked as a nanny. A pure soul with no earthly idea that she was marrying someone who was in love with another. It didn't take long for her to be unhappy and the pictures looking back at their life together portrays the thick air of misery. But what a happy wedding day it was on that day - like something from Cinderella.

Fast forward 30 years......and this time it's a bit different. Prince William and Kate have had years to get to know each other, appreciate each other and grow to respect each other. No one can accuse the guy of rushing things. Yikes! Kate is well educated and does not come from an aristocratic family. Just a normal girl in the world really. Normal changes on Friday for good.

I am really looking forward to catching it on TV. I can you not watch? If you miss it in the morning, it will be rerun all day long and then rerun during prime time that night. This is the next monarch-in-waiting and one day he and she will be King and Queen. What's not to love about the spectacle and the pomp and circumstance? It is a nice distraction to all the other things going on in the world that we are weary of hearing reported. A little good news isn't hard to swallow every now and it?

Monday, April 25, 2011

Prelude to "the wedding"

LONDON - A British guard has been removed from his duties at the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton after calling the bride-to-be a "stuck up cow" on his Facebook page.

Scots Guardsman Cameron Reilly, 18, was axed from the April 29 event after using the social networking website to launch a foul-mouthed rant against Middleton.


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

Happy Easter to those who read my blog!

I believe that it has been raining 40 days and 40 nights here in the Cincinnati tri-state area. It has been quite gloomy - very green but gloomy. Not a particularly good time for an Easter egg hunt. I don't envy the parents who forge ahead with their egg hunt plans despite the weather. It will be a mess.

The whole Easter basket thing has been missed by me as an adult. I can remember getting an Easter basket from Mums and Dadums and then heading over to my grandparents for more Easter basket goodies. Fabulous time for the candy industry - not so fun for the parents who will spend the rest of the day waiting for the sugar rush to end in their otherwise sweet and well-mannered children. Ahhh.....good times.

My favorite "eggs" were chocolate marshmallow. this day, I can easily finish off a box of my favorite brand - Papas & Sons - located in Covington Ky. I wish they had a website because I would direct everyone to their site. The chocolate marshmallow eggs they make are small and simply fabulous. For those of you on Weight Watchers......1 point a piece. That's right. I know that because many moons ago I was on WW and I needed to know this basic fact so I could indulge without guilt. But I digress.....

Papas & Sons make at least a dozen flavors of their eggs. They have peanut butter, opera creams, maple creams, etc etc. There is one to meet every foodies craving and they are available in local stores. My grandmother pinged Papas quite heavily for our baskets. It was she who introduced me to the chocolate marshmallow egg and I found out years later that this was her favorite too. This explained why I never had any of these in the baskets from my parents. Grandma made her baskets herself and the ones I received from my parents included toys and other fun items besides candy. Usually the pre-wrapped cellophane baskets from the local grocers.

Despite the variety of baskets that you indulge in today, let us remember that it is not all about the Easter bunny and all of his tasty treats, there is religious aspect to this day which is the basis of this celebration for all Christians - the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Thursday ramblings

Just a few odd and end ramblings this evening. I simply don't have one topic that I could talk all night about so I will choose a couple.

I found out tonight that my dog Kip, the 92 lb Chesapeake Bay Retriever, likes Brussel Sprouts.....uncooked Brussel Sprouts. While that seems a little odd to me that a dog would like something with such a strong flavor, he has a high food drive and will try just about go figure. His owner likes them cooked by the way. :)

I completed my third day of Couch to 5k. I don't like running and it is more strenuous than my spinner bike. I got through it though and the app said I jogged/walked 1.84 miles and burned 437 calories. Weeeeee!

I have been taking part in a weight challenge at work for the last eight weeks. Tomorrow is not only the signal that Lent is ending.....the weight challenge ends also. I am hoping for a big finish because I have only lost 7.5 lbs in eight weeks and I am very disappointed. According to my clothes however, I have lost some serious inches. I have to keep telling myself that I actually have lost about 12+ lbs since 2/1 so I need to be grateful. However! I want 2.5 lbs more!! Not too much to ask right?

I am looking forward to my trip to Boston (my favorite place to be!) and the Cape in June. I have bought a book and I am ready to chill out and not worry about anything. Just walk the beach and think about the meanings of life............ahhhhhh!  Oh yeah....and chowdah! Lots of chowdah!

That ends my brief ramblings for the evening. Kip is getting restless and likely wants to go outside for a bit. He's a good boy and my faithful companion. Who like Brussel Sprouts as much as me!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Tuna Steaks

Love them! I have found my most favorite way to have tuna salad. Find a nice tuna steak at your local seafood shop or grocer......I prefer one that has a peppery coating on the sides of the steak....and then throw that baby on the grill! When cooked to perfection, a cooled tuna steak makes homemade tuna salad something spectacular. There really is no better way to enjoy tuna.

I have been purchasing the tuna (usually Albacore) in the foil packets instead of the awful cans. Did you know that the canned tuna actually can contain several different types of tuna? Predominately, Skipjack accounts for most of the canned light tuna and contains less Mercury than yellow fin and albacore. Yep....limit the amount of albacore. It may look great and seem healthier than the gray stuff in a can but its not. Anyway....I am sure that my tuna steak isn't any more safe.

So the next time you want to make some tuna salad, start with a Tuna steak on the grill instead of reaching for the can opener. It is very tasty and you will not be disappointed!

Sunday, April 17, 2011


I'm not a good runner. I never have been. As a child playing soccer and softball, I was never the quickest up and down the field or rounding the bases. Thankfully in softball I didn't need to be quick because I was gifted with a solid bat. Even at my healthiest weight running just wasn't a gift that I was given in life.

As I have said before, I have been shedding the pounds over the last few months. Today I decided to download an iPhone app that seemed to be built just for me - Couch to 5K.  The premise of this app is to get you up and moving in a running/walking interval program over a 9 week period culminating in your ability to run a 5k. Again.......culminating in your ability to run 3.1  miles without stopping.


I downloaded this app with much optimism. My feeling is the old adage "no pain no gain" is one that I need to live with if I want to be successful with my weight loss. And what better than a program that plays to my weakness? Now I don't expect to actually run a 5K after this is all said and done but its nice to think that I would be able to do so.

I tried it out this afternoon and it wasn't fun for me but by the time it was over I was doing better in my run/walk reps. Basically, in the beginning, you perform 8 sets of 30 second runs and 60 second walks. The program is set up for a three times a week workout. At some point the length of the runs will increase and I will be walking less. Oh goody. At the end of my workout, I looked like I had had a good workout and I was glad I did it.

Do I really think I will run a 5k after this? I can't see the light at the end of that tunnel as of yet. However, I will give this program a shot and reap the health benefits from it for now. I'm not ready to ask miracles of myself just yet.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Bookstore Saturday

It's a perfectly gloomy rainy Saturday. An ideal day for hibernating in Barnes and Noble. It's a past time I thoroughly enjoy from time to time. I'm not an avid reader mind you but I do enjoy days at BN perusing books and purchasing the most interesting non-fiction reads.

Today I am purchasing a "beach book" for my upcoming New England vacation in June.I have chosen Furious Love as the perfect book amongst one or two other books.

It is a great day to be here. Did someone say its raining?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Fried Chicken

I've been eating less and exercising more since the beginning of February. Just trying to shed some unwanted pounds accumulated from the stress and strains in my life. Whenever I find myself "back on the wagon", I always come up with one stark raving mad craving.....Fried Chicken.

Now its not like I eat Fried Chicken a lot in my less than healthy diet. I do like it and when I have a chance to eat it I want to eat the best fried chicken available. Crispy, a little juicy with just the right balance of spices. Mmmmmm.....

I am lucky.....well....some may say not so live in the Midwest. Here is the Midwest you are going to find some of the best Fried Chicken around. We know what's good and tasty and I am lucky to live in Indiana where they do succeed at chicken dishes.

I have a goal on this diet...umm...change of eating...phase 1. If I can lose at least 20 pounds by May 7th, I am going out for Fried Chicken at a local establishment called The Old Brick Tavern. It's located about 30 minutes from my house up the highway in Sunman Indiana. It's a little hole in the wall family establishment and they do fried foods right. Their Fried Chicken is outstanding and well worth the drive. You can get a whole chicken for $10. They cut it up just like your mom does at home. Yes.....there is a back piece and a wishbone. What do they do with the wishbone at KFC? can get a whole chicken (among other lovely things on their menu) on a big platter with a pitcher of beer. Mmmmm.....It is a real treat. I suspect that they use half flour and half cornmeal as their breading. Don't know if there is any buttermilk involved but the breading has a lovely flavor and is just crispy enough to be entertaining. Hungry yet?

I am looking forward to taking my friends - who I have stirred into a frenzy about this chicken - with me on my FC excursion. I will be that much better eaten amongst friends. For my blog readers, I will post a picture of the large platter of goodness before it is completely devoured. :)

It doesn't get any better than that.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011



Don't get me wrong - I love the fact that I can communicate with someone immediately. I mean...that's what communications is all about these days right? Instant gratification. Breaking news on TV or the Internet allows no delay in getting a message to all of us.

I may be sentimental, but to me there is nothing like a good handwritten letter. It conveys much more these days to the receiver of the letter. It says that you sat down, took time out of your day to convey a meaningful message to someone. Now before anyone says that emails can be meaningful too......yes they can fit into the meaningful category as well. However, in this day of "instant on", I still think it means more to the receiver to receive a handwritten letter. I will go out on a limb to say it states that the person is important to you - they mean something to you. You value them enough to take a moment to hand write a letter.

I have a copy of a letter sent from my great-grandmother to my grandfather when he was overseas in WWI. Timeless words during a period when getting the mail from the mailman meant everything! It was our only source for good news or bad news from family or friends. I believe that this has all been lost on society today.

How do you feel about letter writing? What does it mean to you?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Riverside Korean

So we went to Riverside Korean after all and I was very impressed by the cuisine. This was my maiden voyage in the Korean cuisine category. I had something called Mae Un Dak Bok Um. Basically it is a chicken stir-fry with cabbage, carrots, peppers, mushrooms, zucchini and green onions in a spicy sauce. Love the spicy sauce! I even managed to eat 95% of the meal with chop sticks! Amazing since it also included rice in a separate bowl. Have you ever tried to eat rice with chop sticks? Not an easy feat my friends.

There were a couple of downsides. I don't usually sit on the floor anymore because my leg has a tendency to fall asleep. It is odd really. My legs can be straight out and my left leg gets all tingly and simply wants to go to nighty night land. So this restaurant gives you the option of sitting in a booth or on the floor. My compadres asked for a floor spot so I went along with the plan goodnaturedly. So even before the meal began.....the left leg decided that this was the absolute best time to go to sleep. I managed to get through the meal ok by shifting around a bit but it was a pain. The other downside is the restaurant is small and doesn't have a bar. Now....they do serve wine....and their selection is nice but it is also nice to have a pre-dinner cocktail of some sort every now and then.

The food is outstanding and I look forward to going back again. The menu is varied and gives you very different items from which to choose. If you are adventurous, you can choose skate fish or baby octopus. I think there is a good selection so even those who are looking for "less adventure" will be happy. If you haven't tried Korean food, it is a bit different from Thai, Szechuan or Cantonese. It has a flavor and personality all its own which will leave you satisfied and happy.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


Yes.....Tiger Woods. I am sitting here watching the Masters and Tiger's aggressive climb up the leader board. Fabulous! Yes....that's what I said.

The guy made a mistake in his marriage and while some of you may think he is despicable because of it...he's human. Get over it and move on. Golf has been a boring game because Tiger has not been at his best. I don't like watching it if Tiger isn't charging the greens, pumping his fists and showing the raw emotion that has made him what he is in the history of golf. I heard what the old timers said about him...."he shows too much emotion, he swears, he throws his clubs...he needs to curb all of this and play the gentleman's game" etc etc. That's bullshit. Jealous old men......all of them. He is on target to be the most successful golfer that ever lived. Of course they would say all that crap. They want to change him and his game - make him weaker.

I say let him do whatever he needs to do to get his game back. The PGA is better because of him. No one wants to see no names winning inconsistently with every tournament. The sport of golf is more exciting and interesting because of Tiger.

Let the guy do whatever he likes. You don't have to like him as a many of us can even say we know the man? I don't know him but I appreciate his prowess on the greens and the historical impact he has had on society. Period.

Saturday, April 09, 2011

No politics today but........

I just wanted to recommend a website. I have been reading this site for years now and find it to be an entertaining look at the stuff going on in Washington. If you don't like political satire......skip it.

Wonkette - The D.C. Gossip


It's just me and Kip hanging out this morning. I had grand intentions of taking advantage of a beautiful day - cutting my front yard, pulling some weeds and perhaps entertaining the notion of planting some perennials. wasn't meant to be. The morning is cloudy with a bit of chill in the air. I managed to pull some weeds and putter around the house as I waited for the sun to start shining so my yard would be dry enough to cut. After a few hours of puttering, I checked the weather radar and we have severe thunderstorms coming our way today. I got the mower out and managed to cut the side yard of my house before I felt the spritzing of raindrops. Ah least the dog is happy. I am in the house hanging out with him as he naps.

Tonight, Lyn and I are heading out to a Korean Restaurant for dinner with some friends. I have never had Korean food so I am curious about it. I am a huge fan of Asian cuisine anyway so it really isn't a stretch for me to go this route. I checked out Urbanspoon for Riverside Korean to see what kind of feedback it had received and it looks like 89% of the people who have tried it. I also like to check out the local foodie bloggers to get their input. My favorite foodie blogger - Wine Me Dine Me - had not written a review yet so I am placing my faith in others that say this place is pretty good.
 This might just be the luck of my day today. Just heard that we may or may not be able to go for Korean this evening. Other commitments may spill into the early evening and waylay our Korean din din. Bummer. Methinks I need to think of a suitable Plan B if this falls through this evening.
 Oh well.....I have all day to watch it rain and think about it.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Curious thing.........neighbors

My neighbors are a quiet young couple. I place them anywhere between 25 and 30. Anyway....they keep to themselves mostly. We chat from time to time and I can always count on the husband to give me a hand lifting something. They are good people.

This past weekend they planted a fruit tree in their backyard. While this would not normally be a big deal, I live in an area that until about 6 months ago had deer hanging from the trees. While the herd has been cut back, they still thrive here in the wooded areas of "happy valley". So....the idea of planting a fruit tree in an area where deer are always foraging for food seems a bit hilarious to me. Really? Out of all of the perfectly good landscaping trees and shrubs they could have chosen.....they chose a fruit tree?

Perhaps it is a bit of "deer cull" guilt. You see.....he took part in the herd thinning that happened here in the valley. The local POA thought it would be a great idea to give folks bows and arrows and let them run wild through the woods. He killed one or two during the killing season. I actually think he left one in the bed of his truck overnight.

Anyway, I'm not sure what kind of tree it is and I certainly hope that they actually harvest something from that tree. Methinks that it will simply serve as a salad bar for my little deer friends. It's not like the deer could actually get to the tree past Kip (see pic in post below) because he does a fine job as sentry on my deck. It just seems like a funny tree to plant in an area that is known to be a Denny's for the SE Indiana animal population.

Of course......if its a fruit I enjoy......they will never suspect me when fruit is missing.  :)


If I am really really quiet folks won't see me creep into my blog and post something after a year!

The last time I posted I spoke about my new puppy. If you want to know what has had me completely is him. Kip is my 14 month old Chesapeake Bay Retriever.

He is a "buffalo in a china shop" most days. Thankfully he has left most of his chewing days behind him. Most of my furniture is in tact since he liked to chew on me.... a lot! Many nights I cried frustrated tears because of his incessant need to chew on my arms and feet. Lots of chew marks let me tell ya!

Kip is exactly as his breed is described. He has been a faithful companion who bores easily. I had high hopes that I would be able to train him to make me the perfect Bloody Mary on the weekends but training techniques were a disappointment. He has a throaty bark that will scare the bejeezus out of unsuspecting strangers who approach the house. I haven't had anybody come after me to see where his loyalties lie, but I am confident that he would use those big teeth of his and sink them deep into someone's skin if they harmed his "mama".

He loves his little pal Sadie. Who is Sadie? Sadie is Lyn's little companion. She can be full of fire and fury when she wants to be. Oh.....and Lyn hasn't been spared a little bite now and then. I think there is an amusing story about her nose being bitten by the Little Miss. Well......the story was amusing to me anyway. :)

That is my life for the last year. It is now high time that I begin my blogging again for anyone who is willing to read it. Perhaps a little facelift on the site is in order as well. Hmmmm.....maybe.