Saturday, December 27, 2008

Driving home through Iowa...

There had been an ice storm the day before, and it was quite eerie driving on the highway along this scenery. Well, it would have been eerie if we hadn't been listening to Demetri Martin's laugh-your-head-off funny standup comedy CD...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Flammekueche (Alsatian Tart)

Ooh yum. I tried this nice, simple recipe for the traditional Alsatian bacon and onion tart (called "tarte flambée" or "Flammekueche", i.e. "flame tart") for the first time and LOVED it! It's a traditional dish from the Alsace region of France. In Germany you can buy these just like any ol' frozen pizza in the supermarkets but alas, not here.

Ingredients: 200g flour (bit less than 2 cups), 1 tsp salt, 1 Tblsp oil, 110 ml water, 200g sour cream, salt, pepper, nutmeg, 2 onions, 100g bacon (cut into dice or thin strips).

Make a dough out of the flour, oil and water, kneading until the dough isn't sticky any more (otherwise add some more flour). Let rest at least 30 min. Season the sour cream with some salt, pepper, and (freshly grated) nutmeg. Peel onions, cut in halves and then into thin strips. Roll dough on a floured surface into a thin circle and lay on a baking sheet (use parchment paper underneath!). Spread with sour cream, onions, and the bacon. Bake at 400 F for at least 20 minutes. Goes well with a nice glass of white wine (or two, or three...). Enjoy!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Awesome deal

Yeah yeah I know, Walmart is bad, awful, exploitative, blah blah - but would you just LOOK at this? A super warm, super pretty quilted winter jacket in my new favorite color "eggplant"! And it's ONLY THIRTEEN DOLLARS! With one buck shipping! Probably cobbled together by small children in some poor country, okay, but LOOK AT THIS! Quick, buy one, before they're all sold out!

Thursday, December 04, 2008


And I present... the weirdest holiday gift I've seen so far this year: The Star Wars R2-D2 Fish Tank! We saw this yesterday at Petsmart and it was hard to drag the Hubby away from it...

Quote from the blurb: "FINALLY a complete working aquarium in the theme of your favorite Star Wars™ character! R2-D2™'s head moves back and forth and has sound effects when motion sensor is activated! LED light changes tank to red, green, and blue. Telescope rotates 65 degrees for up close view of fish. Feed fish through the secret feeding tray
!" OMIGOSH, AWESOME! (Nah, I think I'll wait for the "Darth Vader" version and fill it with evil guppies... I'm telling you, they're evil!)

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Best Mac & Cheese ever!

So I wanted to bring baked mac & cheese to a family gathering and googled for some recipes. Here's a link to the one I found, maintaining it's "the BEST"! It's basically a white bechamel sauce that you mix a LOT of grated cheese in (I prefer sharp cheddar and swiss), then mix it with cooked noodles, top with a breadcrumb-butter-cheese mix (yay for Panko breadcrumbs!), and broil until golden brown. Perfect! And awesome with baked ham and the usual stuff.

Just don't make the same mistake I made and double the recipe, thinking 6 servings doesn't quite sound enough, unless you have at least 4 large baking dishes and are prepared and happy to eat mac & cheese for the next week or so. Trust me, I know what I'm talking about (we call it "the great mac & cheese flood of '08").

Friday, November 28, 2008

CVS Thanksgiving sale: Score!

CVS drugstores had a big sale on Thanksgiving day, kind of a pre-Black Friday thing. Tons of stuff basically for free (you spend the money, but you get it back as "Extra Care Bucks", little coupons that you can use to buy more stuff at CVS). Thanks to helpful websites like Hotcouponworld and iheartcvs, I had an entire scenario figured out, including the use of additional manufacturer's coupons and CVS coupons, which allowed me to basically make a profit on this:

Happy Thanksgiving! (fortunately, we have a store a mere 5 minutes' drive away. As soon as the turkey was in the oven, we were off! Ooh, I was SO excited, and so happy they actually had everything in stock!).

Sunday, November 02, 2008


One of our many, MANY visits to Ernie Miller State Park this year (probably the last one for this year, though - the hubby is no friend to taking hikes in the cold...)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Wrong side up

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Hermann, Missouri

We went on a mini trip to the historic town of Hermann, picturesquely located among vineyards on the Missouri river. Lots of German immigrant history, museums, wineries, cute bed & breakfasts. I especially liked the Shrine in Starkenburg and its peaceful setting in a beautiful forest. And the wine tasting at Stone Hill Winery (I'm a lush ;*))

Friday, October 17, 2008


Free Lion Brand crochet pattern for Obama and McCain finger puppets - hold your own presidential debate!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Monday, September 29, 2008

Happy Anniversary!

Oooh, chocolate covered strawberries, hmmmmh! (Hubby got a robot. To each their own!)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Friday, September 26, 2008

QA Engineer "Fuzzbutt" at your service!

Kitty doing some quality control on hubby's paper miniatures (for his awesome pen & paper roleplaying game called "Imperium Chronicles", ON SALE NOW!)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Afternoon at Loose Park, KC

The Rose Garden is in full bloom...

People are out enjoying the weather...

... and being chased by massive amounts of geese. Ah, autumn!

KC City Market

Gorgeous day for an outing! And for eating Falafel at Habashi House!

Friday, September 19, 2008

$3 day at the KC Royals

Tickets: $3

Parking: $8

Slightly nauseating fries and huge hot dog with "the works": $10

Coming to the stadium 2 hours early so we could snatch up two free Royals shirts that were given away: priceless (well, actually our knees REALLY hurt after sitting in those tiny seats for 3.5 hours...)

(kinda empty, 2 hours before the game starts...)

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Happy Cat

hasn't run out of happy yet.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Prairie grasses

At Ernie Miller Park, KS

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Water Cube

One of the things I loved most about the Beijing Olympic Games (apart from watching them on our HD TV which made especially the swim events look awesome, and the burning question of what godawful atrocity Michael Phelps' mum was going to wear today) was the "Water Cube", the newly constructed Beijing aquatics center. Blue and beautiful, and I love the organic, round shapes.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Collage had a free offer for 11x14 collage posters made out of your pictures. Free shipping, too! These are all photos I have taken across the Midwest (Kansas, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Illinois, South Dakota) and in Nevada. Love it!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Ernie Miller State Park

What is the DEAL with this weather? With temps in the 80s and low humidity, you can actually go OUTSIDE? In KANSAS? In AUGUST? Craziness!

Friday, August 08, 2008

Britto art exhibit in Leawood

I like pop art, so I was happy to see Romero Britto's sculpture exhibit at the Town Center Plaza! Ooh, shiny, colorful plastic!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Cat in a box

gotcha. almost.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Summer Survival Kit

Here's my favorite summer stuff right now:

John Frieda "Beach Blonde" sun streaks (heat accelerated highlighter) for that just-from-the-beach-look,

Yves Rocher "
Bio Specific" toning water mist (like a bucket of cold water in the face, aaaaah),

Lahaina Noon Hawaiian sunscreen, hibiscus scented (for that Hawaiian feeling),

Sunsilk Summer Spritz (a beach-scented leave-in spray conditioner that for some whacked-out reason isn't manufactured anymore but I managed to snag the last two bottles for a ridiculously, ridiculously cheap price from my Target, so yay!),

Nature's Inventory "
Sleep Aid" wellness oil (for those hot, hot ((or rather, cold, cold thanks to the AC being cranked up)) Kansas summer nights),

and my Clinique "Happy" perfume. I mean, it's called "happy". And they gave out tons of free samples for Valentine's Day. How can you not love this?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

"Gloves In A Bottle" shielding lotion is awesome!

Yay, I got another lotion to test and blog about! This time I received the "Gloves In A Bottle" shielding lotion. Weirdly named, but absolutely on the spot. Right now, I especially use this for my hands before any crafting or knitting projects (yep, yep, there's still stuff going on here although nothing's finished yet) and, of course, before I use any household cleaner.

The cool thing is that it doesn't wash off so quickly, so you don't have to constantly reapply it. The lotion actually bonds with the outer layer of your skin and locks in natural oils and moisture. Sounds somewhat scary, but it doesn't leave any kind of weird residue. And you only need very little, so one bottle (price is around $12.99 at drugstores) lasts forever. This lotion will be a lifesaver, especially in winter when my hands get crazy dry. Thanks, Gloves In A Bottle!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Overland Park Arboretum

The Arboretum is in full summer bloom.. and they added a few new sculptures!