April 2008


General29 Apr 2008 07:41 pm

Further on the topic of googly eyes, have you checked out a humboldt squid’s eye?

I’m not even gonna get into how crazy it’s beak is. These dudes are frightening; the original giant squid. Smart, fast, nasty and of course, great eyesight.

I became really obsessed with them about the same time the tentacle face dude started appearing in the Pirate of the Caribbean movies, so those movies really scared the crap out of me.  I also once watched this fishing show about catching them and the fisherman said their worst nightmare was to get pulled into frothing water full of these things.

I recommend you wiki them to find out more; they are horrid.

Crafts etc25 Apr 2008 01:03 am

This may be something you don’t know about me, but I love me some googly eyes. They’re just so…googly! Tonight I hit the motherlode of googliness and found a variety of googly eyed posts on the internet.

There is the completely edible googly eyed flying spaghetti monster….

And also the googly eyed ‘nilla wafer.

Also edible. Both are from Evil Mad Scientist.

There is also googlyeyewatch, which may be my favorite blog of the moment (it’s up against some stiff competition, too!)

Or, from the same blog, google eyed salt.

Of course there are also google eyed swizzle sticks from the 60s, a kinda creepy google eyed necklace pendant on Etsy…but perhaps my favorite is this SNL skit with Christopher Walken in it [via Craftzine]

Also, never call them wiggle eyes, okay?

Food and Food: Home Cookin'21 Apr 2008 10:23 pm

For those of you too nervous to click on the roach post, here’s the exact opposite: yummy yummy food.

It’s still snowy horribly here (although as I look out, it seems like maybe the snow has FINALLY stopped) so I made homemade macaroni and cheese the other night. It’s total comfort food, and given the fact that I’m heading back into the gym tomorrow for the first time in almost a year and a half (yikes, how did that happen) I thought it might be nice to have a good last winter fatten me up meal.

The sauce is pretty easy, it’s a classic bechamel, from the Joy of Cooking. I seem to make it slightly differently each time, sometimes using the oven, sometimes two pots, sometimes just one.

Macaroni and Cheese

  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 onion
  • bay leaf
  • 2 cloves
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • lots and lots of grated cheese. Cheddar, parmesan, colby, goat’s…any kind of cheese you want. I like a mix best.

You’ll also need some pasta. I didn’t use macaroni this time, but instead orecchiette, my pasta of the moment. They are disc shaped and I thought they might hold the cheese well. I used about 500g, I think.

Simmer the milk in a small saucepan, studding the onion with the cloves and through the bay leaf. Simmer 10-15 minutes. I usually sprinkle in some cayenne or chili powder for some kick.

In another small saucepan, make a roux of butter and flour. Melt the butter, then add the flour, stirring until smooth and cooking over medium low until the mix starts to frizzle, about 2-3 minutes. Strain the milk mixture in, and stir until smooth and thickened.

At that point…add your cheese.

My pre-grated old cheddar and parm I had to use up.

This turned a kind of horrifying orange, I think aided by the orange casted oven light.

I sprinkled the top with yet more cheese…and voila! Super satisfying home made mac and cheese. Highly recommended. Really good on top: fried onions, broiled bread crumb and butter mixture, bacon etc etc.

Tonight, Mike made a hot dog with THE WORKS. He’d been talking about it for days, and finally made it happen tonight.

He used everything you see in this photo on it:

From bottom left, clockwise:

Sour cream, mac and cheese (yes, I know), mashed potatoes (what), white kidney bean ‘hummus’, homemade saurkraut, cheddar, an egg, pickles, and then in the middle, Vienna weiners, mushrooms and fried onions.

I did not partake.

This is the finished product. He baked most of the layers for 10 minutes in the oven, and added the fried egg and sprouts at the last minute.

And then, maybe the most meta of all photos I’ve taken, a photo of Mike eating a hot dog under a photo of Mike eating a hot dog.

General21 Apr 2008 10:01 pm

Okay, this post might be a little much for some of you, so I’m going to post most of the photos and story past the jump. Be warned, it’s extremely creepy bug heavy. Like, cockroach bug heavy. Yikes. But, consider yourself warned.

Click “Continue reading” to continue….


Continue Reading »

General20 Apr 2008 12:51 pm

My dad’s cousin turned 75 this weekend, and my Mom and I braved the snow to go visit. Snow? Seriously? Yes.

This was the view from Pam’s place (the birthday girl’s daughter). As I write this, it’s been snowing for about 36 hours.

I was pleased to go since I’d get to visit a side of the family I don’t see often, but also I could go and buy flowers from Artworks, one of my favorite stores in town. I picked out some purple and white tulips, freesia and I think what might have been bluebonnets. Under $30, including the glass vase! The place is normally hella busy, but I think the snow kept everyone at bay. Regardless, they really take care to present things well, and so I thought it made a nice gift, considering it was just flowers. (keep this in mind for Mother’s Day, local kids)

After dinner, we played cards, which is a common event at every family gathering I attend. Chase the Ace, followed by Pam and I teaching everyone hold ’em.

Anyhow, happy birthday, Joan. Maybe she’ll read this post soon because her family got her a new laptop!

General15 Apr 2008 09:15 pm

midnight snacking

i can’t help but love cross eyed things

mike at work

me not working

Crafts etc14 Apr 2008 10:24 pm

There have been a lot of announcements in my life lately. I mean, not my own announcements, but those directed at me. Mostly babies and weddings, so I’m glad I found an appropriate ecard site that allows me to express my utter joy and yet my deepest sarcasm and Kelly-ness. A little different than your average Hallmark or Blue Mountain card, here folks. Check them out: someecards.

Perhaps you’ve been on the receiving end of one of these lately, and I hope you find them as incredibly funny as I do.

Here are some of my favorite ones that I’m feeling at work lately.

Fact: I will run to Starbucks for everyone in the newsroom, but refuse to let anyone take my order. My drinks are long and awkward and even I feel sad when I make them.

I’ve created a monster.

Food and Food: Edmonton and General13 Apr 2008 08:56 pm

It seems like summer finally arrived this weekend, with the weather a balmy 23’C today. I saw two Lamborghinis and a few bikers out, so it must be that time of year.

Mike and I returned to a restaurant we hadn’t had the fondest feelings for on previous visits. We were craving diner-like food, me a milkshake and him a burger. We headed over to Delux Burger Bar, which is a trendy sort of burger joint, essentially. We had been with my parents a few times and had been underwhelmed by a few things, namely the dry burgers and nice sounding but surprisingly sad lobster nachos. However, we were both pleasantly surprised and I think he may review it in the coming weeks. It’s been open two years, and it’s nice to see that they’ve settled in well and haven’t slid off the service like many restaurants seem to do in the area.

I had an amazing beet salad, Pinocchio vanilla ice cream milkshake and a side of Stella battered onion rings.

The lighting was pretty crappy since it’s a bar and all, but this is my shake. At $6 it wasn’t cheap, but it was a great milkshake. Far better than Marble Slab which has been my go to place for shakes the past few years.

I’m such a sucker for presentation. I love the minicarts the onion rings and fries come in! Also, the beer batter is a nice touch. It doesn’t flavour the rings, but makes the batter super light and crispy.

Ugh, such a fuzzy photo. At the end of the meal, you get some fresh cotton candy to eat. It’s a cute gesture. I really wish more places in Edmonton were imaginative and put some effort into the dining experience; Delux really does a great job.

Saturday night we celebrated our friend’s brother’s 18th birthday. We went to the Black Dog on Whyte (the patio is open, kids!) and then let the birthday kid decide where he would rather go; the peelers or the casino. He chose the casino, so we drove out to Enoch’s River Cree casino to play some poker.

This only reminds me of what a crappy 18th birthday I had. I had one vodka slime at the Thunderdome with some high school friends, and then went home. Birthdays in December suck. I keep saying this, but I really want to have a summer half birthday. This may be the year!

Tonight the temperature was just right for a walk, so Mike and I went around the neighbourhood. At a tea shop, we saw this really weird teapot. It kind of reminds me of Squidward from Spongbob Square Pants or some old video game I can’t remember the name of right now.

Food and Food: Home Cookin'11 Apr 2008 09:18 am

Two of the things I miss the most when I go traveling and come home again are good Mexican cuisine and bagels. Sweet sweet chewy delicious bagels.

I have yet to find a decent Mexican restaurant in town, so my family and Mike and I often just cook our own – my dad makes a killer flank steak perfect for burritos.

I find the basics are easy to do; steak fajitas, adobo pulled pork, but it’s the extras that make things great. Tomatillo salsa verde is a great addition and doesn’t take much work to make…and tomatillos are even available at Safeway!

However, when I made fajitas last night I didn’t make any salsa verde, instead doing a quick baja cream and pico de gallo to use up some grape tomatoes.

Pico de Gallo

Mince 1 clove of garlic, a quarter of an onion (I used red), and some tomatoes. If you remove the seeds, it will not get as watery. Toss it all together, squeeze in some lime juice and sprinkle with salt. I also added some cilantro, but I don’t know if that’s traditional or not.

Baja Cream

1 tablespoon of sour cream, 1 tablespoon of mayonnaise. Grate some lime peel, toss in some cilantro and squeeze the juice of half a lime in.

These condiments really add to a pretty simple meal of what is essentially grilled peppers, onions and steak, and are good for chips and snacking on, too.

One of my favorite restaurants here in town is the New York Bagel Cafe. The service is leisurely, but the coffees and bagel platters are amazing. (However, you gotta try the hala french toast.) Like many of my favorite places, I don’t get back there often, so I improvise when at home.

I haven’t been able to find a decent place for authentic bagels in the city (the NYBC uses Bon Ton Bakery Bagels, though) so my fall back is Safeway. Pick up some cream cheese, sprouts, smoked salmon…

$12.95 versus approximately $2.50.

Their platters and Cafe Borgia are still amazing though. They have a $99 caviar platter!

General09 Apr 2008 08:44 am

The Office returns tomorrow, and until then, I will be watching two favorite clips. One, a compilation of Creed’s best moments, the other: Harvey the Computer.

Food and Food: Home Cookin'02 Apr 2008 11:38 am

I’ve only had steak once or twice since coming home from Asia, which is really odd because normally I eat red meat once or twice a week. Heart disease ho! In an apartment, it’s kind of a pain in the ass because broiling and frying are pretty much your only options. My dad has an incredibly maintained Weber BBQ I am free to use, but that thing is so immaculate I’m often scared to use it.

One of my favorite ways to eat steak is seared in a cast iron pan with lots of seasoning just on it’s own. I typically feel guilty when this happens so I balance things out by eating a huge salad with the steak. If I have time, I’ll blanch green beans, roast potatoes or do hard boiled eggs. This really turns the excuse to eat steak into a huge dinner.

Steak Salad with mustard vinegarette

  • decent sized steak (depending on budget, can be anything from rib eye to sirloin. I stay away from thin cuts)
  • salad base (usually Safeway’s mixed herb greens, but in the summer, whatever is from the Farmer’s Market, baby arugula or butter lettuce, whatever)
  • tomatoes, avocados, capers, hard boiled eggs, asparagus, green beans, baby potatoes, homemade croutons…anything goes, depending on what’s hanging around and how much time I have

Vinegarette:

  • grainy mustard (1 teaspoon)
  • dijon mustard (1 teaspoon)
  • white wine vinegar (2 tablespoons)
  • olive oil (2 tablespoon)
  • seasonings for the steak

Normally I prep any extras going into the salad first. Boil eggs, steam the veggies, broil potatoes (this can take more than 30 minutes usually so sometimes I just do them for my work salad the next day) Green veggies are the quickest, taking about 10 minutes from starting the water to boil to finish.

I do the vinegarette next, blending the ingredients and seasoning to taste. I add more olive oil to make it smoother normally.

Grease your pan and turn it up high. You want it screaming hot to sear the juices in. Season both sides of the steak liberally with salt and pepper. I have also used chipotle powder and cumin, but am really into Ethiopian berbere right now which combines all my favorite spices.

I have no set time for searing, but I do all the edges, both sides and just pull it off when it feels right. I like them rare, though, so the doneness is not really a care to me. Let it rest while you prep the salad.

Seasoning the steak. The berbere was purchased at Granville market in Vancouver.
Asparagus is in season and the green beans looked crappy.
Just snap the asparagus where they naturally bend and steam them in a basket over boiling water.
Finished product.
General and Travels01 Apr 2008 01:17 pm

like to shop. It’s a known fact. Although I didn’t buy as much as I thought I would in Asia, I still scored some great finds.

Barbarmama mug, $10
Remember the Barbarpapas? They were shapeshifters.
Well this one turned into a mug. Just for me.
She’s so saucy. I love her.

Nintendo DS stylus, $2
There were vending machines in the toystore in Tokyo we visited, Kiddyland.
I thought this was a pen, but it was a DS stylus. I don’t even have a DS … yet.

Squid filled superball, $1
Again, another vending machine wonder. We desperately wanted
the squid, and it came out on the first try!

Delica / RX-7 remote control cars, $6
Mike got the sporty car, and I got the Mom van, because, well, I love Japanese vans.

Rainbow heels, $9
They are one size too small, but I had to get them.
Last trip I bought 12 pairs of shoes. This trip, a scant 3.

MJ shirt, $12
There is a Thai designer, Bhanu Inkawat, who started a fashion house
called Greyhound in 1995. They do some great stuff, including this
Michael Jackson Thriller shirt spliced with some Thai album.
50% off, too.

Rice spoon, $0.50
I don’t eat a lot of rice, but I love rice spoons. They are great for many things.
And this one is pink! A rare find.

Japanese character washcloths, $0.30
I actually got these in Thailand. They love their Japanese
cartoons there. Here, Doraemon and Keroppi.

Kuromi towel, $5
I don’t know why we were so into bathroom towels. Also from Thailand.
Kuromi is a Sanrio character, like Hello Kitty. She’s sort of a punk.

Notepad, $3
Mike and I both got one. Him for his restaurant reviews,
me for my shopping list. A mushroom seemed appropriate.
It was also made by a company named Kaze, which is
very similar to my nickname of KAZ.
Would have been great with my Nintendo pen. 🙁