Tuesday, April 24

It continues....

The mother bird must be ready to lay her eggs....they made a lot of progress today from last night! Any ideas to keep them from building? I can't let the nest remain there. Or, if I do, how long would the nest need to be there? Maybe I could put a box with some holes in it so they can get in and out and place it underneath the grill.

My mom gave me the following idea which I think might work. The wind will blow the foil and scare them off. I put the nest above under the grill in a plastic crate. We'll see. I doubt they'll use it since I touched it. It's a foil seahorse! haha.

Monday, April 23

They won't give up

A month ago, I took a picture of a nest some birds had built in my grill:

I removed the nest (no eggs were in it, thankfully) and since then have removed parts of a new nest several times. Before using my grill tonight, there was yet more work done on a nest. I removed the materials, and within 30 min of turning the grill off, they were at it again:

I'm worried that one day, I'll open the grill and find a completed nest with eggs. What then? They can't live there all summer! They will also be competing with wasps for use of my grill as a home!

Wednesday, April 18

More, yes, more

Now, I don't plan to post a picture of the nasturtiums every day but liked this one.

No Joke!

Real growth this time, from this to this in two days:

It helps that nasturtiums are probably the easiest flower to grow from seed, and they grow quickly!

Monday, April 16

Mega Growth

Woah! Day 5?

Psych! Remember that word?

Sunday, April 15

Signs of Life in steps

Photo diary of a nasturtium, #1

From this:

To this, in a few days:
(sorry, pics aren't working right now)

Friday, April 13

Oh Dear

"Diner scarred for life after sausage explodes in her face"

I read this headline and thought, Right, scarred for life? Rather, an exaggeration of emotional scarring as a result of embarassment that your sausage dinner exploded. Well, that's not the case. It's a lot worse.

Tuesday, April 10

Call that Number, Folks!

How would you like to meet your mate this way?

Monday, April 9


Cranberry Pot Roast: turned out great, will type/post recipe if requested. I couldn't find fresh cranberries, but a can of whole cranberry sauce was an acceptable substitute. I combined the instructions in the recipe with instructions from America's Test Kitchen and was pleased with the results. In short, the roast was cooked for about 3 3/4 hours at 300 degrees. I was happy to see it got to the stage of being "melty" and easily falling apart when I cut it. It was cooked in beef broth, chicken broth and white wine, among other seasonings, with the liquid coming halfway up the sides (per ATK).
Swirled Cranberry Cheesecake: this didn't happen, unfortunately, since fresh cranberries weren't available. I made
Texas Sheet Cake instead. I hope to make it in the future.
Green Beans with Pine Nuts, Garlic & Basil: didn't happen since I couldn't find fresh basil. Instead, I made Green Beans with Pine Nuts, Garlic and Diced Tomatoes (adapted/made up), and my guests liked it quite well.
Lasagna: didn't happen. I made Macaroni Salad from America's Test Kitchen for the fellowship dinner instead. Main ingredients, besides pasta and mayo, were red onions, dijon mustard, lemon juice, cayenne, celery, salt and pepper. I liked. Friends liked.

I also made Tuscan White Bean & Garlic Soup for myself, from Giada De Laurentiis: easy (especially if you have an immersion blender), high in protein, nice taste. Two out of two friends approved.

Last week, I made some sandwiches called Venetian Panino for Lord's Day lunch, also by Giada. I liked them a lot and would make them again. I'm not a fan of a strong dijon mustard flavor, and the spread for this sandwich was just right.

Thursday, April 5

A bunch of recipes.

Everyone won the photo quiz! Good job.

I made my favorite green bean salad this week two times (once for myself and once for friends).

Finally, today is my Friday! Benshaw is closed tomorrow for Good Friday. I'm having some more friends over for dinner on Saturday and am making Cranberry Pot Roast (Northwest B&B cookbook), Confetti Mashed Potatoes (Three Rivers Pgh cookbook), Green Beans with Pine Nuts, Garlic & Basil, and Swirled Cranberry Cheesecake. The beans and dessert are new recipes. It's too bad it has turned cold again for several days because I really wanted to make some summery food, like hamburgers and this potato salad.

I'll be cooking a lot tomorrow and Saturday because we also have a fellowship dinner for church after our morning Lord's Supper service, so I have a salad and a main dish to prepare. I'm considering a new recipe, Four Cheese Lasagna from the issue of Cook's Illustrated that came in the mail yesterday. It contains fontina, gorgonzola, gruyere and parmesan cheese, plus a fifth cheese, ricotta. Yes, it's still called Four Cheese Lasagna! The recipes featured in Cook's Illustrated also contain a write-up of methods tested for the final, best recipe. If I don't make this dish, I might make the a meat lasagna recipe they've published.

My aunt emailed me this salad recipe which sounds delicious. Browned butter has a wonderful flavor. All of these recipes have a touch of flare that is different than your basic recipe...which I love!