Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Paulette and Russell's Reception

Saturday evening, I headed to St. Paul to attend the reception of Paulette and Russell.  Paulette teaches at the school at which I work, and is a delightful girl.  I don't know Russell very well, but he seems to be equally wonderful.

The reception was on the 8th floor atrium of the Galtier Plaza, downtown.  The atrium was GORGEOUS!  Glass ceilings, a middle section that was open all the way to the ground floor, an outdoor roof patio/garden...amazing!

Each table was set with a board game, and there were signs to tell you which "game" you were to play.  There was also a "horseshoe" game on the patio, and air hockey and foosball on the floor above.  Very cool!

We had a sit-down dinner of pasta, salad, and bread (I didn't get any cake, now that I think about it!), and then the rest of the evening was spent dancing!  Wow!  I haven't danced like that for AGES (and TOTALLY paid for it the next day when I couldn't WALK without groaning...my calves STILL hurt when I climb stairs!).

Here are some photos of friends from work at the festivities...

Kristin and me getting ready to go!

Barb, Erin, and Jeane

Me with Pat and Joel

Kimmy and me

Pat and Joel


Me and Pat

Paulette and me

Paulette and Pat

Janet and me

Kimmy and Kristin

Jodi and me

Kristin, Jodi, Rachel, Ginny, Kim, and Janet

Kate and Pat

Greg and Janet

Erin and me

Erin and Kristin


Kristin blowing bubbles

Kimmy blowing bubbles

Brittan and Katie

Pat and me

Here's hoping YOU had a chance to "dance your legs off" recently too!

Sunday, September 19, 2010


After jump starting the Riviera today (apparently, the battery dies if you don't start the car every couple of weeks...), Duane went to buy PREMIUM gasoline to fill it (to the tune of $69.00...ulp!), and dropped me off at one of my FAVORITE St. Paul destinations...Gerten's Greenhouse.

Gerten's is a LOVELY, locally-owned greenhouse with an AMAZING selection of plants...even now, when most other greenhouses are wrapping things up for the winter, Gerten's is featuring $20.00 mixed baskets with mums, chiles, grasses, and other fall flowers, and is currently holding their pumpkin and gourd-fest.

I'm "basil-deprived" this year, since my crop was deemed POISONOUS after some wasp spray dripped down onto it while trying to thwart a takeover of my deck in July.  I ended up cutting it all down and replacing it with a mum...WHICH IS JUST NOT GOING TO CUT IT, CULINARILY SPEAKING...

So...I found a DELIGHTFUL basil plant, which won't even get planted...it'll go into the "herb blend" for herb and cheese scones this winter, a BEAUTIFUL rosemary plant (my rosemary probably ALSO got doused with poison, so I've been afraid to use it)...which will ALSO go into the herb blend, the remainder of which will then die a miserable death at my hands indoors this winter, and a heather plant...just because it reminds me of my trip to England and Scotland a few years back.

If you're ever in Inver Grove Heights, you MUST check out Gerten's...or...if you live too far away, you can get a sample of what they're like at http://www.gertens.com/!

Here's hoping YOU had a chance to enjoy some greenery this weekend too!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

St. Paul Farmer's Market

The sun FINALLY came out again this morning, so Duane and I headed to downtown St. Paul to go to the farmer's market.  We usually go to the Minneapolis farmer's market, and this summer, went to the Eagan Marketfest on Wednesday evenings, but the St. Paul market is THE PLACE TO BE in the early fall!

Unlike other markets, they have a "grown locally only" policy, so early summer is a TOTAL bust, but in the fall, when the "crops" are in, it's a GOLD MINE.  We found lovely carrots, anaheim chiles, potatoes, corn, and dill.  Not sure HOW the dill balsamic vinegar we bought today fits that policy, but it is CRAZY TASTY, so we'll overlook it!

Here are some photos of the fun!

This man needs a little more coffee (and possibly another "go" with Weight Watchers...)!!!!!

Rice Park, which we had to cut through to get there!

Edamame in it's "natural state"!

Part of the "bounty" we found!

Here's hoping YOU were able to sample nature's bounty this weekend too!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Further Devastation on the Golf Course!

Well...work CONTINUES to scar and wreak havoc on the formerly beautiful Carriage Hills Golf Course behind our complex.  Here are some "before" and "after" photos to show how the "progress" is...progressing...











Here's hoping YOUR part of the world is still beautiful, and untouched by "progress"!!!!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Taste of Greece

Today Duane and I headed to the uptown area of Minneapolis for the 22nd Annual Taste of Greece Festival at St. Mary's Greek Orthodox Church.  Every year it gets better and better!  This year, it migrated into the parking lot, with food tents and live music, as well as the carnival games and big bouncy buildings for kids.

We haven't made it there the last couple of years, and we usually go on Sunday evening, when the bakery stand has already sold out of baklava, but decided to go when it OPENED this year, and it was GREAT!  Instead of paying cash at the food tent, you now buy tickets to exhange for your meal.  I had the spanikopita and Greek fries, and Duane had the pastitsio...YUM!

After our FABULOUS lunch. we watched a food demonstration on the other side of the building.  The lady doing the demo made...SPANIKOPITA!  After watching her master the triangle wrapping technique, with RAPIDLY drying phyllo dough, we headed inside, watched some Greek dancers, purchased our baklava, looked around the GORGEOUS church complex, and headed out.

It's SO COOL to have such a variety of cultures and opportunities to explore them here in the twin cities!  What a cool place to live! 

Here's hoping YOU were able to enjoy festivities from "another culture" this weekend too!