Thursday, April 28, 2016


It was a littl chilly on Wednesday, but the sun was shining, so it didn't seem to matter.

I had a bunch of little errands to run at lunchtime, so I didn't eat at a restaurant. Instead, I went to the drive-through at Arby's. I wanted to try one of their "limited time only" sandwiches (I wish they would quit doing that). I bought the bourbon bacon brisket meal. I took it back to work and ate at my desk.

The sandwich was very good! Slow roasted brisket, topped with cheddar and bacon on a fancy bun? Yum! The only thing I would have done differently was to ask for some barbeque sauce, since about halfway through eating it, it started to feel a bit dry.

Back home, I went out back and took some photos for people at work. We had been talking about the reflecting pool and the raised bed herb garden. So, long time readers can skip these, LOL!

I noticed the tulip I planted out front last fall are starting to bloom.

I moved three wheelbarrows of sand and then went inside.

I baked more bacon and made a BLT with an heirloom tomato I bought last weekend at Westborn. Delicious!

I watched some TV, but was asleep by 9:30 p.m.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016



It was chilly (54 degrees) and drizzling on Tuesday morning when I took the trash out..

I left for lunch at 11:30 a.m. to go to Sam's Club for coffee (you want to be there before the lunch crowd). It took me longer to find a parking place than to get the coffee!

On the way back, I stopped at the Newburgh Grill and got a coney and some onions rings.

When I walked outside in the afternoon, it had gotten windy and the temperature had noticeably dropped. Wish I'd worn a coat this morning!

Back home after work, I retrieved the trash can. There was no mail, which was weird.

When I looked out back, I noticed one of those birthday balloons floating in my little reflecting pool. Dammit! I had no plans to go outside, but I went and got it out.

Back inside, I started the Wednesday wash a day early. My friend B___ called and we talked for a bit.

I was going to make dinner, but it was getting late. So I just ate leftovers.

I watched a rerun on TV and then went to bed at 9:30 p.m.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

True That!

Monday Moanin'

It was still warm on Monday morning. So I didn't wear a jacket to work and walked outside both times.

I dropped off some of my soup to Michelle and am anxiously waiting for her critique.

I went to Ten Yen for lunch again and then went to Larry's Foodliner and got some sour cream.

Back home after work, it still hadn't rained, so I changed clothes and moved more sand.

Back inside, I started warming up my supper. I cut the sweet corn kernels off of two of the cobs. Then I cut one of the baked potatoes up. I sliced the rest of the steak into small strips and added one half to the plate. While it warmed up in the microwave, I mixed some horseradish with mayonnaise for a dipping sauce.

I got the plate out and added some butter to the sweet corn and potato. I topped the potato with sour cream and seasoned everything. Dinner was delicious!

I was tired, so I went to bed around 9:00 p.m.

I was awakened by the thunderstorm at 1:00 a.m. I watched the light show from the couch for a while and then went back to bed.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Sunday, Food Day

I woke up early again, but managed to fall asleep and slept until 5:30 a.m. I finished the Saturday post and then turned on the news at 6:00 a.m.

It was cold again (38 degrees), so I got a cup of coffee and waited in bed for the furnace to catch up.

When it got to 72 degrees F., I got out of bed. I farted around doing the usual Sunday morning chores. Then I finally shaved, showered and got dressed. Since I missed it yesterday, I figured the first order of business was to make my Irish beer and cheese soup.

So, I turned off the TV and turned the radio onto Acoustic Café on WDET.

Then I started prepping. I chopped a large onion and minced two cloves of garlic. Next I got out the food processor and installed the grating plate for the cheese.

Sidebar: I had a lot of difficulty securing the exact ingredients. The recipe called for two bottles of Harp Irish Style Lager. I couldn’t find that at either Kroger or Westborn, so I settled for Guinness Blonde. And, as far the cheese went, I didn’t even bother with Kroger. I showed my list of possible cheeses to their cheese guru (Dubliner, Irish cheddar or Skellig) at Westborn. 

He said the only one they had was the Dubliner. But, he said, they had an excellent Wisconsin white cheddar that was cheaper and I should try it (he always wants me to taste-test the cheese). So, I did and he was right! It was the best damn white cheddar cheese I think I ever tasted!!!

But, as I told him, this was for Irish beer cheese soup and I would need to get a pound of the Dubliner…

Anyway, I cut up the Dubliner cheese into manageable pieces and grated them with the food processor. I used the kitchen scale to measure out the 14 ounces I needed. The rest went into a baggie (or my mouth, LOL).

Note: This is not cheddar cheese. It is a really interesting cheese, though.

Then I put my biggest sauce pot on medium heat. I added a tablespoon of butter, the onions, and garlic, and sautéed for 3-5 minutes.  I scooped the softened onions into the food processor and added one cup of chicken stock. I pulsed the onions and stock until they were completely smooth.

I poured the onion mixture back into the sauce pot, and added the rest of the 32 ounces of stock and both bottles of beer. I brought that to a boil.

NOTE: The beer broth will foam up quite a bit when boiling. Make sure to use a large pot, so it doesn't boil over.

I tossed the shredded Irish cheese with two tablespoons of corn starch. Then I added the shredded cheese, 14 ounces of cream cheese (cut into cubes), and 1 ½ tablespoons of Dijon mustard to the broth. I whisked it to melt the cheese and break up the cream cheese cubes until the soup was completely smooth and slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.

I tasted it and decided to forego adding salt. Then I ate a bowl of it for brunch. It was delicious!

Oh, I forgot to tell you, the garnish is crumbled bacon and snipped chives.

I cleaned up the considerable mess and then went outside to move more sand.

I was back inside and ready for a nap by 2:00 p.m.

When I woke up, I went outside and lighted the charcoal starter. While that burned, I went inside and wrapped five small ears of Florida sweet corn in aluminum foil (they don’t have any ears in their husks yet). I seasoned my bone-in rib eye steak with salt and pepper and “baked” four big russet potatoes in the microwave.

When the charcoal was ready, I spread it out and oiled the grate. I grilled the sweet corn first and then the steak. I took everything inside and let it rest.

I oiled the potatoes and then crusted them with Kosher salt. I took them outside and put them directly on top of the coals. I kept turning them until the skin stared to blacken. Then I took them inside as well.

I ate some of the steak and an ear of corn for dinner. Both were excellent.

My daughter Melissa called and we talked for a long time.

I watched a movie, but fell asleep before it was over. When I woke up for a bathroom break, I turned everything off and went to bed for real.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

The Saturday Story

I woke up WAY too early on Saturday (3:00 a.m.). I tried to fall asleep, but every time I was almost there, Caley started choking. Freaked, I would knock her off the bed! I can easily clean up the floor, but the bedspread is a bitch.

She never, ever, did hack up that hairball and I never, ever, got back to sleep.

I finally gave up and got up around 5:00 a.m.

I was hungry (chicken salad sandwiches are delicious, but not that filling...) so I went out on the patio in my robe and snipped some chives. The security light came on, but I didn't give a shit...

Sidebar: It was damn cold out there (38 degrees) in just a bathrobe!

Back inside, I cracked three eggs, adding in a touch of whole milk, the chives, salt and pepper. I whisked that until the butter in my small skillet melted. I scrambled them soft while my sourdough bread was toasting.

Excellent breakfast!

I eventually shaved, showered and got dressed for the morning errands. First came a haircut, then Kroger's, Westborn and finally Home Depot.

I took Schoolcraft (the I-96 service drive) to get back to Inkster. I noticed the Holiday Inn Express hotel they are building on the corner is up to four stories so far. I wonder how tall they are going to make it? I drove around to get a picture for you.

I stopped at the quarter car wash and hosed the truck down. It's supposed to rain on Monday so there's no sense in getting an expensive one, but a bird pooped on my truck Friday.

I left the truck outside so I could unload it. I put the stuff that needed refrigeration away and then grabbed an old towel. I went outside and dried the truck off.

While I was drying the truck, a little old lady walked over from the townhouses. She said, "Papa John, do you remember me?" I said yes. She said, "I hate to ask, but I need a favor. Can you loan me two dollars?" I was getting out my wallet when she said she couldn't pay me back until next Friday. I said, "Are you sure two dollars is enough?" She said yes, all she needed was two dollars. So, I gave it to her.

I swept out the garage and got onto my first project. Now that its getting warmer, I want to move that big drying rack for the cabinet door out of the downstairs room. It's been in the way all winter, but it was the only way I could paint. I rearranged the garage so it would fit. The birdbath I stuck out front.

Then I got to work on the rack itself. This took a long while as I had to unload it, disassemble it, haul it into the garage and put it back together again.

I finished up around 3:30 p.m., parked the truck in the garage and decided to take a nap.

I woke up after 5:00 p.m. and went out back to shovel some sand.

Sidebar: If you remember, when I had my Puerto Rican crew here, installing the landscape timbers, I had them put the leftover sand (and there was a lot of it) in my raised bed vegetable garden. I didn't know where else to put it.

So, I picked out a spot back by the compost pile and am slowly moving it there. I just need most of it out before its time to plant.

I was only filling up the wheelbarrow halfway, so I didn't hurt my back.

I noticed it was getting dark, so I stopped for the night, put everything away and locked the shed.

When I got in, I was surprised to see it was almost 8:00 p.m. So, I gave up making soup today. Instead I microwaved two hot dogs and ate that for my dinner.

I watched some taped DIY shows for inspiration and then went to bed.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Prince, Tom Petty, Steve Winwood, Jeff Lynne and others -- "While My Gui...



Okay, so I admit it. I wasn't a big Prince fan. He came after my generation. My daughter Amy, however, was a HUGE fan.

Sidebar: Melissa, on the other hand, was all about Bruce Springsteen, and I could relate. "Down by the river?" OMG!

With Jeremy, it was the Grateful Dead's clone band, whose name I forgot.

Jacob was all over the place (as usual).

Anyway, Amy posted this on Facebook and two thing struck me. He was a damn excellent guitarist and Dhani looks so much like his father, George Harrison.

I may have to revisit my adoration of Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck...

I looked up the use of hazard flashers by states...

...and this is what I found:

South Carolina

Hazard lights may be used while driving for the purpose of warning the operators of other vehicles of the presence of a vehicular traffic hazard requiring the exercise of unusual care in approaching, overtaking or passing.

Foggy Friday

It was damp, chilly and foggy Friday morning. It stayed mostly overcast the rest of the day (the sun did peak out a few times).

I walked outside both times, although it felt more like London than Livonia.

My old cubicle buddy had asked me if we wanted to go to lunch. Vicky said she was in, so we agreed to meet at Los Tres Amigos. Somehow this spiraled out of control and it ended up a party of eight!

Which would have been fine, I guess. Except I ended up at the opposite end of the two tables pushed together and couldn't even hear a word she said!

Our usually interesting conversation consisted of me saying "Hey, how you doing?" when she hugged me hello and "Bye, take it easy!" when she hugged me goodbye (Michelle's a hugger). The food was good, but it was a very disappointing lunch!

Late in the day they distributed tee shirts to all the employees, celebrating our company's 40th anniversary.

It was a payday so, back home, I worked on the computer while listening to the news. Then I got some glass cleaner and the paper towels and washed the glass surfaces in my room. Cleaning the house, baby-steps style, LOL!

I ate another chicken salad sandwich for dinner. But, I forgot to buy a bag of chips from the machine at work, dammit!

I got two new magazines in the mail, so I read them until bedtime.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Rainy day and Thursdays...

It was drizzling when I went to work on Thursday. I reassured myself that the gardens and my lawn needed it.

So, I walked inside.

I grabbed a quick lunch at Big Boy: the broccoli and ham soup and the half of a turkey sandwich. Then I headed up to Farmington and the eye doctor. They had gotten in a pair of clip on sunglasses for my new specs and wanted me to come in to see if they fit. They didn't, so drove back to work in the rain.

Back home, I decided to use up the leftover chicken breasts. So, I cubed them. I added in a half cup of chopped celery, 1/3 cup of finely chopped onion, 1/2 cup of mayonnaise, salt and pepper, and a teaspoon of Dijon mustard. I stirred that altogether and had chicken salad.

I toasted two slices of sourdough bread, put on some lettuce and topped that with the chicken salad and had an excellent dinner.

I watched the Red Wings lose and eliminate themselves from the playoffs. Dammit!

Then I went to bed.