I just passed my five year mark as a blogger. This was my first post in March of 2012:
I discovered a great blog recently. Chef Alan Bergo of the Salt Cellar restaurant in St Paul writes as the Forager Chef. He likes to use indigenous Mid-western ingredients and local purveyors. He cooks with dandelions, knotweed, ramps, spruce. burdock root and nettles. He writes about hunting for mushrooms, cooking methods and recipes. The recipes look fabulous – Spruce Brined Poussin with Apple Mustard Sauce and Beef Tartare with Dead Man’s Fingers and Ramp Vinaigrette are a couple that caught my eye.
I don’t remember seeing them on the menu at the Salt Cellar. A friend of mine was raving about the meat so I went there for the first time the other night. There is a large glass window into the kitchen from the main dining room so you can watch the chef in action. The meal started with homemade potato chips and pimento cheese with warm fresh rolls that melted in your mouth.
The beef steaks were tender and flavorful. They came with a small cup of wild mushrooms and a cup of their own special béarnaise sauce with a little tomato added. Our sides were the market vegetable medley which were nicely seasoned and the beef fat pommes frites. I think I ordered the roasted potatoes but the pommes frites were sinfully delicious.
We finished the meal with a chocolate mousse and a Boston cream pie. Our waiter insisted we try the spruce ice cream that was offered as part of the daily ice cream selection. It was unexpectedly delicious. Very fresh and light.
Our waiter’s name was Manu and he had a strong French accent. Usually when I ask people where they are from, they will tell me the country or the continent and I have to ask several times to find out where exactly they are from. He told me he came from Toulouse, France right away and was happy to chat. His mother’s family was from Catalan across the border in Spain and his grandmother had called him Manu, short for Manuel and it stuck.
My dining partner and I had been speculating about how he got here. My friend was sure he followed a woman. I thought he might have come for school. Of course it was a woman. He said he followed a woman here and then fell in love with Minnesota and could not leave. The restaurant was empty on a Friday night and I asked him if it was always like that. The explanation was that the restaurant has no outdoor space and in the summer Minnesotans like to be dining outside if in town but many were probably at their summer cabins. We consoled each other for not having a summer cabin.
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
I have been blogging for two years now. Seems like just yesterday. I started my blog to promote my book, Expat Alien. I didn’t know what I was doing or if anybody would even read it. What I found was a whole new world. There are millions of bloggers out there. I had no idea. People blog about everything. Some blog a lot, some not so much.
To mark the occasion I though I might find one of Julia Child’s cake recipes. It seemed appropriate since she was an expat. However her recipes tend to be three and four pages long and that is a lot of work. So here is my favorite chocolate cake recipe that I have made a million times. It comes from the Joy of Cooking 1975 edition.
And keep on blogging!
Cocoa Devil’s Food Cake
Two 9-inch round pans
Pre heat oven to 375 degrees F
Combine, beat until well blended, and set aside:
1 cup sugar
½ cup cocoa
½ cup buttermilk or yogurt
Beat until soft
½ cup butter
Add gradually and cream until light:
1 cup sifted sugar
Beat in, one at a time:
Beat in cocoa mixture.
Sift before measuring:
2 cups cake flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
Add the flour in 3 parts to the butter mixture, alternately with:
½ cup buttermilk or yogurt
1 tsp vanilla
Beat batter after each addition just until smooth.
Grease the pans and cook for 35 minutes in a 375 degree F oven.
When cooled, spread the cake with your favorite icing.
‘Tis the season.. Have you seen that snow falling across the pages of WordPress? Thought I was imagining things at first. Lovely soft falling snow.
It must be that giving season. I have been given an award not once, not twice, but three times! What fun!
The Very Inspiring Blogger Award was sent my way by WIE SAGT MAN…?, A Hausfrau in Deutschland. An informative blog about two Americans living in Germany.
The Petroleum Wife, TCK and trailing expat spouse, also sent this award my way.
I thank you both. You inspire me as well.
For once, I am going to follow the rules (more or less). Seven things about me:
1. I once had a turtle named Tootsie
2. I like to watch Doc Martin and work on my needlepoint
3. I love art museums
4. I think Roger Daltrey is cute even though he is way too old to go prancing around stage with his shirt off
5. I want to go to Buenos Aires and learn to Tango and then see the end of the world in Ushuaia
6. I am convinced chocolate and red wine will cure anything
7. I love all you nutty bloggers
And the Nominees are:
Mumigrants – An honest look at being a mum and a migrant.
Expat Since Birth – A multicultural family living in the Netherlands
Mirth and Motivation – A TCK who believes in positive kismet/fate
American Tai Tai – In search of beauty in the mundane
Angelinem’s Blog – Traveler, photographer, nurse
My other award comes from Jumble, An American woman living in China. It is the The Super Sweet Blogging Award. Not sure if I got it because I am so sweet or because of my Food Friday. I’m sure it was both! 🙂 Thank you, Ms Jumble!!
This one comes with questions:
1) Cookie or cake? Chocolate chip cookies, of course!
2) Chocolate or vanilla? Is that a choice? Chocolate all the way.
3) What is your favorite sweet treat? Dark chocolate truffles
4) When do you crave sweet things the most? The holidays!!
5) If you had a sweet nickname what would it be? Dulcinea
And now, drum roll….
This one goes to Maggie at Fly Away Home Book, A New Jersey girl living in Norway. She is very sweet and currently sitting under a ton of snow.
Happy Holidays everybody!!
It is almost Thanksgiving Day in the USA. I think it is the most important holiday we have. It has nothing to do with religion or ethnicity. It is the one day a year this big melting pot comes together on common ground and takes a moment to reflect on all the things they have and should be thankful for. They don’t all eat Turkey, they don’t all watch Football, they don’t all have big families surrounding them, but they all have something to be thankful for, even if it is something small. And this day should remind them of that.
One thing I am thankful for is this blog and all the fellow bloggers I have come in contact with over the past 8 months. I love writing little stories and reading other people’s pieces. I am only sorry I don’t have time to read as much as I would like. There is so much interesting stuff out there!!
Maggie at Fly Away Home was one of my first followers and she has been very supportive all the way through. I have enjoyed reading about her life in Norway and growing up on the New Jersey shore. Her book, Fly Away Home, is great! Check it out.
Maggie has now bestowed the Blog of the Year 2012 Award on me. Thank you, Maggie!
Well, it has been an interesting year.
I started my blog with my new Mantra: “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
I have written 109 posts about growing up TCK, travel, genealogy, my current life, and various other miscellaneous things that popped into my head. I started a Food Friday blog that brought me back to my love of cooking. And, I published my memoir, Expat Alien.
Plus I had my gallbladder removed!! (Thank you all for your comments and best wishes!)
I have a lot to be thankful for.
I am passing this award to:
Wanderlust Gene – because her beautiful photos are other-worldly and transport me to far away places
ExpatLingo – because she makes me laugh
Dounia – because she is a fellow TCK who “gets” it
Moonbeam McQueen– because she persevered and published her book, Peculiar Rhymes and Intimate Observations: A Book of Light Verse
- Select the blogs you think deserve the ‘Blog of the Year 2012 Award’.
- Write a post and tell about the blogs you have chosen and present them with their award.
- Please include a link back to this page Blog of the 2012 Year Award and include these rules (do not alter the rules or the badges).
- Let the blogs you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the rules with them.
- You can now also join our Facebook page – click the link here Blog of the Year 2012 Award and then you can share your blog with an even wider audience.
As a winner of the award please add a link back to the blog that presented you with the award. Proudly display the award on your side bar and start collecting stars.
So, not TOO long ago I was awarded an award…. the Inspiring Blog Award.
This came from Expatially Mexico, a German woman, married to a hotel manager, living on a beach in Mexico. Can you imagine a better life? She has a great sense of humor and appreciates her new surroundings. You should check out her blog for sure.
I like awards for two reasons. One, it brings out a more creative element where pretty much anything goes. And Two, you meet the most interesting people!!
I back-tracked this award to see what “rules” there were and found all kinds of interesting people who don’t follow any rules. Awesome!!
Check them out too…
- Mirth and Motivation
- Scene Stealer
- Angelinem’s Blog
- Another Day in Paradise
- Live simply, travel passionately, and don’t forget to breathe
- Zeebra Designs and Destinations
- Little Grey Box
Inspiring is the word of the this blog…. What inspires me, what inspires you.
I like this definition: to exert a stimulating or beneficial effect upon (a person); animate or invigorate
Animate. What Animates me?
Getting lost in any city
A good joke
And of course, Gertrude Stein, my personal word god. From Patriarchal Poetry:
Let her be to be to be to be let her be to be to be let her to be let her to be let her be to be when it is that they are shy
Very well to try
Let her be that is to be let her be that is to be let her be let her try
Let her try
Let her be let her be let her be let her be to be to be let her be let her try
To be shy
Let her be
Let her try
Cheers to all of you. And here are a few you I will pass the baton to in case they feel inspired:
Ha! That should keep you busy for a while!
About three days ago a fellow
Blogger nominated me for the Awesome Blog
Content award. Her name is Maggie and she loves
Even wrote a book called
Fly Away Home.
Goodness Gracious, I said.
How can this be?
Just then I thought about
Kindred spirits and how easy it is to
Lose sight of
Question how things happen. Does there need to be a
Things or can we enjoy our
Views of the world with
Xanadu can not be far off when we appreciate the
Years we spend together in this
I nominate MoonBeam McQueen for this award because she is cool.