Saturday, February 28, 2009

Chocolate Raspberry Cake and Granola

raspberrycake01

So, although I've been busy, I haven't been too busy to whip up some delicious baked goods. A couple of weekends ago, I made a mini chocolate cake using a recipe from my small-batch baking book. I knew that the level of chocolate would be sorta bland, so I bought some raspberries to frost it with. There are raspberries between the two layers and, as you can see, on the top. This cake was delicious. And, because it was small, it was eaten (by me and my gentleman friend) way before it could attract mold, ants, or any other pesky critters.

granola01

The second thing I made was granola. I've been wanting to try my hand at a granola for a long time. And then I found this. It's a nice recipe that tells you about mixing and matching the ingredients to get what you want and like. It was super-simple and quick to make. And, let me tell you, it tastes delish mixed into some yogurt. 

Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Outdoorsy Gear:  Kamik Outback Hiking Boots

boot03

Alright, if you don't know, I plan on heading back to Alaska for a little visit this summer. I haven't been back home since I left--3.5 years ago. And, in preparation for this trip which I'm calling Journey to the Homeland, I need to do a few things. This is what I call Operation Alaska. First thing on the list:  acquire bonafide hiking boots. Usually, I just go hiking in tennis shoes, but we all know that rocks are sharper, hills are steeper, and bears are meaner in Alaska, so I need to be ready with the right gear.

These boots were a birthday present from my gentleman friend. (He supplied the gift card, I supplied the desire to buy boots.)

After browsing Sierra Trading Post, I settled on these Kamik Outback Hiking Boots. Now, shopping online is always tricky--you'll receive items that are too this or that just to pay $6 to return the misfitting items. So, I figured in my search for boots I'd have to order and return a few pairs until I found some that worked. 

Nope, not in this case. They fit well with both my lightweight hiking socks and my heavyweight hiking socks. Now, I haven't actually taken a hike in these boots, but I have high, high hopes that they'll be comfortable and raise my outdoorsy status a few notches. (Of course, if they fail me, you'll be the first to know.)


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boot01


Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Week #07

09week07

Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Week #06

09week06

Just catchin' up.

Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Monday, February 23, 2009

Did I Mention My Sister Was in Town?

On my birthday, my dear younger sister, Belita, and her gentleman friend (read boyfriend) had a layover in Cincinnati [sic] so I ran out to the airport to visit with them. The day couldn't have gone smoother. I took off half a day of work, left right at noon, picked up my gentleman friend (read boyfriend) and we headed off to the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky airport. See, Cincinnati's airport is really in Kentucky. Go figure.

We arrived at the airport with about 15 minutes before my sister's plane arrived. Perfect. When they came out of the gate, we had about 2 hours before they needed to head back through security to catch their next flight. After not seeing my sister for 3.5 years, you'd think that 2 hours would fly by, but it didn't. It moved slowly (in a good way, not a "I'm stuck waiting" kind of way), so I was able to catch up with her, meet her gentleman friend, and introduce my gentleman friend.

Because there's not much to do at the airport, we found a little deli and got some sandwiches. The sandwiches were expensive and not that great--typical airport food. And so we sat at the little table chatting and nibbling. Then, we got photographic evidence that yes, we did indeed meet up. 

Observez-vous.

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(I told them to hold something up with pride. Belita chose to hold the chocolate chip, walnut cookies I baked especially for them. A little side note, Belita's shirt is all about evolution vs. creation, although the pro-choice vs. pro-life double-meaning is a nice add.)

visit01
(I'm comforted that the Lower 48 hasn't ruined my Alaskan complexion.)

Although it was entirely too short of a visit, I'm happy that I got to see them and surprised that everything went so well. It won't take another 3.5 years for me to see her because I'm headed back to Alaska on a vacation this year.

Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Why, Yes, I Did Have a Birthday.

Instead of Sunday Letters, I'm going to show you all the birthday greetings I received not too long ago. Thank you for all the birthday wishes and gifts.

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bday06


bday02


bday03


bday01


bday07
(I'm still waiting for the ticket to Denver. Haha!)

bday05
(The man in green is the kayaker. And now he lives on my animal shelf at work.)

bday04
(My dear younger sister gave me the San Diego Zoo penny while the John Deere one came from Aunt Susan.)

Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Monday, February 16, 2009

Sundays I Try to Write Letters and Sometimes They Get Written on Mondays

Dear Readers,
It's been a little over a week since we've been together. This I know. I've missed my planner scan. I have the picture, I just haven't had the time to blog it. And, it's still a picture, not a scan because I haven't gotten around to reinstalling my printer/scanner because it miraculously uninstalled itself. (Don't worry, this isn't the first time.)

Folks, I was beginning to feel bad about my blog-neglect. But this is what Everyday Adventures and everyday adventures are all about--experiencing the unexpected. I had no idea that each day last week would render me unable to blog. And, I'm not complaining.

With that, I'll leave you a promise:  I will post all 52 planner scans of 2009 and share all of my adventures.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Sundays I Write Letters

RE: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, GENE!
Dear Mom,
You said it.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik



RE: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DADDY!
Dear Mom,
Metaphorically, Daddy is the one in the middle picking his nose.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear KBezzie,
Yes, indeed.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik



RE: HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!
Dear Mom,
Yes, my birthday was a good one. I did get to see Belita and her gentleman friend.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear Aunt Susan,
Yes! I did get the card you sent. Thank you! And, I love the John Deere smooshed penny!

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear KBezzie,
On the contrary, I think you are the nut.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear Toni,
Belated or not, thank you for the birthday wishes!

Sincerely,
T. Budnik



RE: WEEK #05
Dear KBezzie,
Yes, the rain made the snow even worse on the second day. I despise driving in the snow/rain here. I wish I had studded tires.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear Mom,
So, are you starting your car every 8 hours on the hour and never skipping?

Sincerely,
T. Budnik



RE: BOOK REVIEW
Dear KBezzie,
If magic mushrooms and fiddleheads had been mentioned, this book would have gotten a raving review. It did not.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear Mom,
I'm sure you don't want to be cooking what this guy was.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik

Friday, February 06, 2009

Book Review: The Scavenger's Guide to Haute Cuisine by Steven Rinella

scavengersguide

Thank goodness, I've finished another book. Continuing my natural education, this books takes me to an outdoorsy arena I have yet to embark on neither in nature nor in literature: hunting and gathering. Steven Rinella is a self-proclaimed outdoorsman who happens upon an old-school cookbook that requires all kinds of weird ingredients. The book is the story of how he acquires all of these ingredients and then holds a three-day feast.

The stories were interesting enough but I felt like there wasn't too much purpose beyond, "hey, look at this cool thing I did." Which, I'm fine with, but this just didn't knock my socks off. Rinella's voice is like the neighbor kid who calls you over so you can watch him burn some ants with a magnifying glass. Not that he's overly violent or cruel, but that he's up to something.

And, as a side note, Rinella now writes for Glamour, or at least wrote this article.

Okay, so this book was good, but not mind-blowing. Do what you will with it.

Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Week #05



09week05



Enjoy!
T. Budnik
Happy Birthday to Me!

birthday12

birthday11

Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Happy Birthday, Daddy!

DaddyBday

Enjoy!
T. Budnik

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Happy Birthday, Gene!

GeneBday

Enjoy!
T. Budnik
Sundays I Write Letters

RE: WEEK #04
Dear Mom,
I do have a bad case of the spots. Can you suggest a remedy?

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear KBezzie,
Yes, coffee beans.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik



RE: BAKING ADVENTURE
Dear KBezzie,
Where I get my raspberry preserves is none of your business.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear Mom,
Go ahead and make KBezzie some preserves. They won't taste as good as mine.

Sincerely,
T. Budnik


Dear Aunt Susan,
It sounds like you need to plan a trip to Ames to get some books back. (The preserves are probably all gone.)

Sincerely,
T. Budnik