Thursday, January 28, 2010

bit of cooking

Had the urge to do a little cooking this week. Both of us enjoy cooking and baking, but with our long work hours lately, food is usually something random and quick. Tuesday night I went outside my comfort zone and tackled steak. Originally I was going to do the prep work and when Zachary got home from work, he was going to grill. Well I got the prep work done and before I knew it, the coals in the grill were hot and ready, and Zachary wasn't due home for another 20 minutes, so I had to take the helm of the grill. Eek! I am not the grill master of the house. I followed an Alton Brown recipe (I know, him again) and made Molasses Coffee Marinated Pork Chops. Instead of pork chops, we used steak. The marinade seems odd, but the flavor was incredible. You could taste all the flavors of the ingredients, and the result was a slightly sweet tangy creation that complemented the grilled steak well.The reduction sauce that is made from the marinade makes a wonderful dipping sauce for the steak and the fries. I actually got the steaks cooked right too, as Zachary likes his medium rare and myself well done.

Wednesday night I attempted baking. I wanted to treat Zachary to a chocolate cake he adores. He has made this before with great success and I wanted a stab at it. This one is called Beatty's Chocolate Cake.
The cake turned out perfect. Sooo moist. Sure beats the boxed variety. I had some problems with the chocolate butter cream frosting. Not sure what happened. It tastes great and it is smooth, but it didn't seem to get as creamy and light as when Zachary made it. My theories are either I rushed the butter and it wasn't soft enough when mixing, or the house was too cool. The frosting wanted to be thick. I tried adding a little hot water while mixing, it seemed to help a bit, but I was too scared to add more and wreck the mix. Any ideas? I don't make frosting very much, so I probably didn't see the warning signs.
Like my uneven frosting job? :-P

I had a piece for breakfast this morning. Nothing like a shot of sweetness to start your day.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

nothing much lately

I always have good intentions with this blog. I am always planning to make posts more often, but either I forget about it for a few days or I think I have nothing too interesting to share. Maybe I'll work on that this year, be more "post-full".
Both Zachary and I have been working a lot this month. Zachary has been putting in extra hours at his job and helping out at other locations. I have been buried with projects at my job and with my freelance gig. In between working, we've continued with our hobby of WoW in our free time. Through the game, we've been able to reconnect with Zachary's old friend Ben, and his wife Amanda. They have been super helpful to us with the game. They even invited us to join their guild. It is fun to know some real people in the game too.
Been itching to get outside and do some sort of outdoor activity together, whether it be a hike or ski, but these last few weeks, our schedules haven't lined up during the daylight. Hopefully soon.
I guess when the crowning achievement of the week is getting the laundry and dishes done, things are pretty vanilla around here. Well, that is okay too sometimes. Vanilla is my favorite flavor of ice cream. :-)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

love has no boundries

After Zachary left for work this morning, I sat down at my computer and started working on my calendar project. I moonlight as a freelance graphic artist for my sister-in-law's promotional products business. I was about a hour into it until I was, interrupted. Time for a photo shoot I guess...
Quee, let me work.
Productive time has officially ended. At this point, she realizes my computer makes a wonderful butt warmer.
Oooo, dangling camera strap.
When she was done toying with me, she perched up on top of the other computer next to me and supervised. Break time is over, back to work.

Monday, January 4, 2010


Saturday we went to our friends, Kate and Jim's, for food and fun. I was looking forward to visiting all week, knowing that Kate would be making her wonderful stuffed mushrooms. They are large portabella caps stuffed with a sausage mix, topped with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. We also had ravioli, garlic bread, and ice cream cake.

After dinner entertainment led to Monopoly. I usually never win at this game and it started bad as usual for me in the beginning. Stuck in jail, not landing on property to buy, etc... But after a while I found myself flush with money, since I wasn't buying much property and I hit free parking a time or two. I had nothing to spend it on. Zachary was definitely the property leader in the group, making an property alliance with Jim. Made a couple trades with Zachary, some swaps and free rent agreements with Kate and suddenly I was back in the game. After Jim folded, Kate hit some of Zachary's properties and then she was out. It was just me and the Z. I offered to call it a draw, but it was agreed I had the upper hand. :-) We are surprised Mickey and Stanley, the cats, didn't run off with the board pieces. They did eye them longingly though.

Speaking of cats... our furry friend on Sunday delayed our errand running on Sunday with mandatory ear scratches. Zachary was lounging on the bed and Queequeg parked on his stomach. As much we wanted to go out in the bitter cold, we let Quee get her fill of scratches.

Friday, January 1, 2010


Okay, I admit it, we are officially WoWers. Late last summer we decided to try the free trial to the World of Warcraft. Zachary is a seasoned gamer and I am not, but we are still able to have fun together. For a gaming rookie like me, I am surprised how much I enjoy the game. (Although being a healer in a dungeon can get quite taxing!)

After months of slowly leveling our Paladin and Druid, we hit level 80 yesterday. I know, ringing in the New Year with Warcraft may sound lame, but we aren't drinkers and party animals. :-)

Don't we make a cute couple?