Once upon A Time at Garlic Fest…

This story starts with garlic and ends with chicken. And no it’s not a recipe. :)

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A couple of weeks ago the hub and I went to Garlic Fest at Shaker Square. The plan was to go there and then head off to Mentor Headlands beach to try to squeeze  a little more beach time in before Fall took hold. But unfortunately that day was gray… and so we headed to the Garlic Fest and then decided to go to my dad’s house for dinner (We had previously been invited). So we walked through Garlic Fest and sampled garlic jellies, garlic hot sauces, pickled garlic, and fresh garlic (that was surprisingly very spicy.) Then we got an Agave Garlic Popsicle from Chill ( a new Cleveland popsicle vendor)

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I enjoyed it, but I’d probably get another flavor under different circumstances ( when at Garlic Fest…). We also got a little free mini biodegradable pot and free garlic cloves to plant. We are going to plant them soon in the ground. By this time next year  we will have garlic of our own.  One of the last things we did there was buy a raffle ticket. The prize? Two chickens and a brand new chicken coop. I had wanted to raise chickens for a while and thought, why not put in a dollar…. “I probably wont win” I thought…I was right. I didn’t.

Later that night we went to my dad’s house of dinner and we talked about all the things we did at the Garlic Fest that day. My dad insisted that my step mom and he go the next day (he’s a big garlic fan.) That night at 5:00pm my step mom called me. “Kate I won the Chickens!!!” By 7:00pm the brand new coop and two chickens were in my yard.

At first I was thrilled. The next two days I was totally freaked out! What was I thinking?! Chickens?! What if they got loose? What if predators got to them? What if they got sick? What if? What if? What if? It was anxiety central at my house… I talked to my mom and she assured me I was crazy for freaking out. I was still skeptical, but the next day  I checked on the chickens and I saw EGGS!!! It was so cool. I became totally giddy! Since then I have been very excited about having the Chickens in our lives. We are on week two and so far so good.

We named the chickens after the characters in Waiting For Godot, Estragon and Vladimir (what would you expect from an actress & a playwright?) Since Estragon and Vladimir are more masculine names and we nick named them Gogo and Didi (also the nickname of the characters in Waiting For Godot.)

Estragon is a barred rock chicken. She’s very pretty and more than a little feisty. She lays brown eggs.

estragon

Vladimir…I’m not 100% sure what kind she is… I think she is an Ameraucana chicken. She looks like she’d be a handful, but she is very sweet. She gives a light greenish egg. I totally saw her lay and egg and it was totally crazy/amazing/weird.

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This is our coop (pardon my compost pile in the back haha) I feel like it is two small for them to live comfortably/happily. So once my chickens are “legalized” (Cleveland Heights allows chickens, but we have to get a conditional use permit through the city and the next approval meeting is in October) we will be building a run to provide more space for them.

coop

We have a local brewery in town that sets their spent grains out for us crazy suburban chicken raisers. This will save us some $$ on feed! yay!

spent grains

Pretty crazy story huh?  I have to say I am glad the fates took charge and gave me these chickens. I had wanted them, but who knows if I would ever have gotten the balls to go through with it. It’s nice to be reminded that life is an adventure and the best adventures are the ones that are full of surprises!

My newest obsession? Rugby!

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So…Let’s talk Rugby for a minute! The hub and I went to check out a Cleveland Rover’s game this past Saturday and I LOVED it. First of all  the Cleveland Rover games are free and you can bring food, drink, and even your pup! It is super easy to follow which is a big relief. Football is way too complicated for me.  My two favorite parts are the scrum which looks like this:

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I never snapped a picture of the scrum at the game. The one above is from an England vs Scotland game.  A scrum is a way to restart the game after a minor infringement.

My most favorite part is this:

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This occurs during a “line-out.” A line-out happens when the ball goes out of play. Both sides compete for the ball and sometimes they lift a player in the air.

For a detailed description of the rules I suggest you head over to Wikipedia. They are WAY more detailed then I have the patience to be. :) If you are in the Cleveland area I suggest you take in a game! If not I suggest you find a local Rugby league and take in one of those games :)

Pittsburgh The Land of Yellow Bridges

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So on August 6th the hub, Lady Linzi and I went to Pittsburgh for the hub’s birthday. The Marlin’s were playing the Pirates and the hub is a Marlin’s fan having grown up in Hialeah Florida. The game was a night game so we had some time to do some other things as well.  We had wanted to go to the Warhol Museum and the Carnegie Musuem of Art, but we only had time for one of them. Since Andy Warhol was also born on 8/6, we decided go to the Warhol Museum. We’ll be back again for sure. Pittsburgh is only 2 1/2 hours away from Cleveland. 

We started the day at Luna Cafe here in Cleveland Heights. It’s a roadie tradition. The hub and I had the herb scrambled egg panini (I added ham and a cafe mocha) and Lady Linzi had the nest egg. 

The ride to Pittsburgh was pretty uneventful. We went directly to the Warhol Museum. We spent several hours there. If you’ve never been there before I highly recommend it. It is the kind of place the really gives you a jolt of inspiration. 

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After the Museum we took some pictures of Pittsburgh’s Yellow Bridges and walked to find some lunch… It was about 4:00pm at this point and a lot of places weren’t open yet. We ended up at Diamon Market bar & Grill. Then we headed over to the stadium..

Unfortunately, The Marlin’s lost, but it fun being at the stadium. I have only ever been to two places to see a baseball game, Cleveland and Miami. I really like Pittsburgh’s stadium.

When we went to get our car we ended up not having to pay for parking because we had parked their all day and at the end of the game they had the barricade up.  Score!

We stayed over night and the next morning we made our way to Dor-Stop for breakfast.  Dor-Stop was featured on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives. I had a VERY large veggie breakfast burrito (with a side of bacon of course). It was very yummy.

It was  quick little trip but we had a great time! Can’t wait to do it again. Thanks for the memories Pittsburgh!

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#NaughtyNauticalAdventures

Welcome Sign

Let’s talk Put-In-Bay for a moment. Put-In-Bay is about an hour and a quick ferry ride from the great city of Cleveland. If I ever had a doubt that Cleveland was the greatest city in the country to live (don’t worry I never have) all doubt was erased after our trip to Put-In-Bay.  Lady Linzi had a goal of going on top of the Perry Victory and International Peace Monument this summer. The hub and I couldn’t let her go alone! I hadn’t been since high school and to be honest I hardly remembered a thing. But  I am up for almost any kind of adventure. So we made the voyage across to the middle of Lake Erie To South Bass Island (Put-In-Bay).

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September marks the Bicentennial of the War of 1812′s Battle of Lake Erie . Everyone and their mother had a Dont Give Up the Ship flag. We bought one for our house. “Dont Give Up The Ship” is my motto for summer 2013.

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The picture below one was taken at Heineman’s Winery. They give tours of their winery and the “Crystal Cave” which is the world largest geode.

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Side note the gift shop had these amazing door pulls on the door.

door pulls

First stop was the Perry Monument.

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The view was awesome!

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We had lunch at “The Keys” which was the “Northern Most Bar” and was Key Westy enough fool me for an hour or two.

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We drove around in the golf cart and explored the island. We went to grave yards, checked out the South Bass Island Lighthouse, checked out the strip, looked at all the boats at the marina and drove by this cute wall/observation area that was painted all fun…

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This is the view of the lake from the light house.

lighthouse view

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My favorite picture of the trip is this one :)

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It was a great day and it really defined the summer for me. I’m glad we did it and I hope it becomes a tradition for us.

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Summer Mix 2013 Part 2

Summer mix part 2

Click here to hear the playlist on Spotify

 Shut Up and Smile- Patent Pending

 Let’s Find Some Meaning- This Good Robot

 The Summer- Cococnut Records

 Cough Syrup- Young The Giant

 I Summon You- Spoon

 OMYGOD- Kate Nash

 Grow Up- Cher Lloyd

 I Told you So- Karmin

 Dirty Love- Ke$ha

 One More Summer- No Doubt

 One Of Those Days- Joy Williams

 Giving Up- Ingrid Michaelson

 How Lucky We Are- Meiko

 I Love Your More Than Sunshine- Cathy Heller

 Folding Chair- Regina Spektor

 Movie Loves A Screen- April Smith

 Girls and Boys In Love- The Rumble Strips

 Boom Boom Boom- Brandon & Leah

 Chin Up- Amy Stroup

 Sunday Girl- She & Him

 The Quiz- Hello Saferide

dont give up the shit

Horchata

horchata recipe

Horchata. I had heard about the drink before, but the first time I investigated how to make it was while listening to the Vampire Weekend song by the same title. If you’ve never heard of it, it is basically it is cinnamon rice milk and originates from Mexico. Making it usually is a tedious affair. Making what is essentially watery rice, using the rice juices and milk and sugar and cinnamon… You get the idea. Thanks to Vegans and the food industry discovering alternative milk products we really don’t have to go through all that trouble for rice milk any more. You can actually find it at most grocery stores. My recipe bypasses all the slaving over a hot stoves (well for an extended period of time anyway) and gets you right to the yummy drinking part a lot faster. The best part is that this drink has so many alternatives. You can make it vegan. Or spiked with rum like the kind I made.  Here is what you will need

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 32 oz of unsweetened vanilla Rice Milk. I got mine at Trader Joe’s

 1 cup milk or cream ( You can use almond or soy milk if you wanted to make this vegan)

 2 teaspoons of cinnamon

 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg (optional)

 1/2 cup brown sugar (You could use white sugar, but I like the molasses taste the brown sugar gives this drink)

 black rum (optional)

In a sauce pan heat up rice milk. As it simmers add cinnamon, nutmeg and brown sugar. This part is important because the sugar needs to dissolve . Once it  has dissolved remove the pan from the heat. Pour mixture through cheese cloth or a fine sieve into in a glass pitcher ( or any container that wont melt if you pour hot liquid into it.) Chill cinnamon rice milk for 1-2 hours. Add milk or cream and stir to blend. Pour over ice and add a shot glass full of rum if you are making the alcoholic version.

-bottoms up!

Dark N’ Stormy

Last summer I was looking for a “go to” drink that I could enjoy all summer. That’s when I came a across the “Dark N’ Stormy.” My favorite local pub, Parnell’s, added it to their summer menu. This was pretty surprising seeing as this place is as far from a “cocktail bar” as you can get. I once heard a customer ask the owner, Declan (a cute surly Irish gentleman), what the “specials were that night.” Declan responded with, “We’re open.”

When I saw this on the menu I had to try it. I am a fan of the Moscow Mule which combines ginger beer, lime juice and vodka. So I knew I would love ginger beer, lime juice and black rum! I was right!  Here is what you need
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 Ginger Beer- I use Goya’s Jamaican Style ginger beer. It’s .99 a bottle, easy to find and has a nice spicy kick to it. But there are plenty of other versions and they are pretty easy to find. Liquor stores often have it. Ginger Beer is non-alcoholic and has a more potent ginger flavor then ginger ale.

 Black Rum- I usually use Gosling’s Black Seal, which is delicious and the black rum to use. But this year as I was purchasing my bottle of black rum my summer full of Dark N’ Stormy’s I happened upon The Kracken Black Spiced Rum and I had to buy it. It is also delicious and the bottle is fun…also it’s called The Kracken and has a picture of a Kracken on it. Awesome.

 Lime- You could use bottle lime juice if you are so inclined. If you opt for the lime you can use it as a  garnish  as well in addition to using the juice.

Here is the fun part. Putting it all together. Order is everything in making a good Dark N’ Stormy. In your glass of choice (tumbler, high ball glass etc) add ice, and 1-2 table spoons lime juice. The fill your glass (almost to the top make sure to leave enough room for the rum) with the ginger beer. Then add the black rum. I usually use just 1 shot of the black rum, but how much you use is entirely up to you. The different viscosity of the liquids make the beverage take on the look of a thunder storm. I usually mix it up with my straw before I drink it, but it’s fun to look at when you first make it. Cheers!
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