Wednesday, October 31, 2007


So I got myself more lamb...and then I marinaded it with bits of apple, garlic cloves, salt and Balsamic vinegar. Then I pan cooked it. It would have been good if it had been the same quality meat as my last lamb...but it wasn't...way too much fat and gristle not enough actual juicy lamb-ness. With a side of pan fried potatoes...with the apple bits too. I may write this up for Chicagoist.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I Look That Bad On Purpose (The Eyes Closed And Everything)

I went to a Halloween Party earlier in the week. I almost didn't go...then I thought of the perfect costume.
I am your mom, after a long night on the streets.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Lunch Sandwich And Condo versus Old School

On Saturday I had a sandwich from Pane's Bread Cafe. It was turkey, ham and bacon with lettuce, tomato and dijon mustard. I also added spicy mayo and muenster cheese to wasn't as amazing as I thought it might was the quality of the meat, I'm a shaved thin kind of sandwich girl (unless the meat is of a superb quality and its thickness is something to marvel at) and this wasn't that. I don't know. I'd give it another shot, the bread was good and the sandwich was hot. The mayo wasn't spicy though. Then I took a walk around. It was a real sunny not quite cold reminded me a bit of high school, sitting on benches. I wish there were more benches for people to sit on and look around. On my little walk around I saw a number of such benches...unfortunately they were all outside senior citizens' homes and nearby them were signs talking about how if you weren't a member of the building you shouldn't be sitting on their benches. Sigh.
New school architecture, everywhere in Chicago but never any less stupid, next to old school halloweenized kind of architecture. I like the old school...even if it's not the absolute example of old school...I think you can still get the idea.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Morning Side

The next day I had breakfast at Three Brothers Restaurant then made a slapdash, directionless drive back to Chicago. Traffic greeted me past O'Hare and it was the opposite of the feelings of the day before.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Dinner in Woodstock, Illinois

After a time of recharging photo batteries and watching the cable television in my hotel room, I went to Woodstock's historic square. I went, specifically, to La Petite Creperie. I had a very lovely meal. It might just be the best meal I have had in a number of months. I had a hard time deciding what I was going to eat. So many things seemed like they would be good. I finally settled on the escargots for an appetizer and their special of the month: veal in a creamy wine sauce with vegetables over rice. The veal was tender, not quite as tender as I expected but I think the last time I had veal was at Tru...and, well, yeah.

For dessert I had their "French Kiss", caramelized apples and cinnamon, flambeed in Calvados with a dollop of Creme Anglais(e?).
They also had a $31, three course prix fixe. It was nice and there was even a true, live French person! Oooh, la la. And it was clear that a lot of the other diners were repeat customers familiar with the waitstaff and menu. I also had a glass of Vouvray with my escargots and a Chablis (recommended for the veal) with the veal. Mmm. Wee bit of a gluttonous meal but well worth it.

A Day Away: The Middle

After the orchard I meandered on back roads to the Chain O Lakes state park.
It was nice being in a car. It was nice to listen to music loud and in CD form. Thanks to M. Lady and my New York friend Jess for a number of good music compilations, one could call them mixes. Oh and to Neutral Milk Hotel for being so awesome to drive to. It wasn't totally country.
I saw at least five, more than that, barns. Many were pretty and had wholesome looking cows and horses nearby. Unfortunately it wasn't quite far enough away from Chicago not to have its pockets of developments or communities named after the things that they replaced (Apple Valley Estates or some such). It reminded me, in its more rural moments, of upstate New York only flatter and browner or tanner? Nice country roads.
Chain O Lakes State Park. I drove down to a boat launch and looked at a lake. It was big and there wasn't a path along it, or there must have been but I didn't say it. I sat and looked at the water and envied the people in their catamaran boat. Not really a catamaran. I was in a catamaran once. There was a man on the catamaran, I was with my parents, we were going from France to England, I was maybe 11, the man was old and British. He talked about fasting and how to cook a turkey and I thought he was really, really, really weird. That has nothing to do with any thing.

There were paddleboats but no one to rent them from. I could have rented a horse and gone on a trail ride...if I was made of pure gold and rubies.

This is the trusty rental car. It did a very good job.

At one of the picnic areas in the park. I stopped at several of these areas and took small steps down different paths or sat on a bench before deciding to return to my car.
It's nice, space and quiet and pretty and all in one place.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

I Am Gearing Up

Just down the hall from me is a has an itsy bitsy drawbridge...when I first saw it I thought it was a room for hotel staff that held heavy things that needed some sort of There is a sign on this room's door. It says:

Sir Lancelot Suite.

Nuff said, I think.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

My First Stop

I've been wanting to get out of the city for a while now. It's a little more difficult since I crashed my car but everything is manageable if you don't mind paying for it. After a long, tortured figuring out of funds, timing and desires (and talking to my mother for an hour on the phone) I got my rental car in the morning and drove on up to northern Illinois for the day/night. I went to Royal Oak Farm/Orchard and picked some apples.

The apples were not abundant seeings as how I should have visited a few weeks back...this apple in particular I wanted...but it was too tall. In fact that was true for a large number of apples. I am five feet five inches and a half and I simply cannot make my arms reach seven foot things. But look how red and shiny! I didn't get it.

There were ladybugs.
And giant decaying pumpkins (another post once I get access to verticalizing software).
And stray chickens.
And pretty sad looking goats and sheep.
This was a dirty goose.
I also bought some cider, some windfall apples (unlike my last orchard visit location, this place didn't allow you to pick windfalls yourself at a discount...though you could get 1/2 bushels of their windfalls for 12.95...I did that in addition to picking my peck of Jonafrees) and I would have had lunch in their "country kitchen" but there was a large line of senior citizens, a good number of them in wheelchairs, that made me feel like it just wasn't worth it. No offense, senior citizens.

Straightforward but still Yummy

Mmm, pierogies and brussels sprouts. I ate them for dinner last night. Steamed the sprouts in the microwave. Boiled the pierogies in the water. A little butter, a little salt, a little pepper et woila!

Another Big Bunch

Surf's Up is cute, I like it.
Cynthia Voigt's On Fortune's Wheel is one of those books I read a lot when I was younger and still enjoy picking up about once a year. I read it again last week.
Yesterday I went to the Edgewater library and got some bookies then I read one. Towelhead. It was good though the main character/narrator was a bit more naive than I could completely believe.
I finished watching the latest series of Foyle's War mysteries and they continue to bring mystery to my life and awe at those there Brits with their World War II stamina.
Sarah Polley. I liked her in My Life Without Me...I liked that movie, I should watch it again. Now she's directed this somber, quiet movie about a marriage and alzheimers.
Poor Mary Stuart Masterson, being all tomboy unnoticed. Some Kind of Wonderful is surprising in that you don't exactly know who you're supposed to consider the main character.
OH MY GOD. Watch The Great Happiness Space...or maybe it's just Happiness Space? Okay here's the basic set up: It's a documentary about Japanese gigolo types and their female clients....most of whom are prostitutes...many of whom because prostitutes in order to be able to afford to pay the gigolos to hang out with them. It is crazy time.
Small town movie.

The end. So I am in northern Illinois right now, waiting for the batteries for the camera to recharge so's I can drive around in the country a bit more before going to the restaurant I saw on the internet that is nearby the hotel I'm staying in. I rented a car, you see, and went to an apple orchard...and then went to Chain O Lakes State Park...then meandered back to the hotel...where I have just learned a whole lot about Rachael Ray's rise to fame. Woo.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

I Ate The Food

So I'm waiting for the photos to upload....oh and now they have. The other day I was working from home and had just received a pay check direct deposited into my account. I decided to give another shot to ordering sushi in. This time from Indie Cafe. A place I've been to in the past. And again. I don't learn from my mistakes (obviously). It wasn't bad. I ordered their: white scorpion, spicy salmon and yellowtail with scallion rolls. I can't decide, but I think none of it was great. Of course the reason for the non-greatness is/can be easily blamed on the fact that I had it delivered. But I think the real problem is not only that it was delivered though maybe partially. I think it's that I can't bring myself to go to my favorite neighborhood sushi joint. Forgive me but it's like Dim Sum. Just a bit too reminiscent of the people ( ie person) I usually would partake such yasty tummy treats.I also, for the sake of difference and whatnot, ordered the Tom Yum Rice. It is not Tom Yum soup soaked up by rice...but the shrimp are cooked nicely and every fourth bite of the rice is something quite special. Noted to self: if you want sushi buck yourself up and go in, otherwise you will never think sushi is good again. I'm wondering if sushi and I are done. That a strong food passion was bolstered by a relationship and with the relationship sadly in kaputs perhaps a specific other love dies too? I don't mean to be unrealistic or overly dramatic. It's just that I loooooooved sushi for so long and yet, without the ebf, I have found my ability to do without quite manageable. Just don't ask me about the other things...the things not quite as easily manageable. What? Horses? What? Boa constrictors in the ceiling? What?
What a lame self-serving post.

She Knits! It's Knitting Season!

Yesterday I finished this scarf. Do you know any person (-probably a girl person) who wants it? I usually make scarves with people in mind sometimes I don't. Lately I don't. For example: I made this scarf. It has no specific recipient. It is the beginning of a slew of non-recipient based scarves. Which, very often, translate into being scarves for me all the time. But that's not all that fun. What?

Sunday, October 21, 2007


I hate young teenaged boys who spray silly string on me as I leave the train. I hate them with a fiery passion. I hate the way the silly string makes my sweater smell. I hate that these kids would think that I was the proper target of such an attack. I glared at them long and hard. But then the train moved away and I was left seething in my own silly stringed hair and sweater ness. Hate. Teenaged. Boys. With no manners.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

New Work Clothes

On Thursday I went to Lakeview and bought new clothes at Marshall's and TJMaxx. Yesterday I wore my new pants (which smelled very very much like black and white photo chemicals throughout the day) and new shirt to work. I came home and wanted to take a photograph of me in my new clothes. I asked tonguethrust to help. I thought to myself, I thought, what would be funny to do with a heading like "this is what I wear to work" or something. So I picked up two pots, because it seemed like it would be good. And these photographs were taken. You can't really see the clothing all that well, Tonguethrust did take one photograph with the flash and the clothes (and I) don't look half bad. But these pictures are more fun.