Sunday, November 28, 2010

Day 202 - 11.28.10 - Pasta e Fagioli at Last...

The finished product... garnished with homemade croutons, Parmesan, and olive oil... not to bad for beans, garlic, tomatoes, carrots, sage, and onions...

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Day 201 - 11.27.10 - Pasta e Fagioli

Today, I decided to take a crack at an Italian classic... paste e fagioli soup. I first fell in love with this soup at Olive Garden, but as I grew up and my culinary horizons broadened, I discovered that the pasta e fagioli at Olive Garden is not a pasta e fagioli at all. It is still delicious, but not a pasta e fagioli. This is a run at the classic recipe... mistake number 1, the beans must soak overnight... soup tomorrow...

Friday, November 26, 2010

Day 200 - 11.26.10 - Loving Leftovers

This year, Thanksgiving was held at the Bransen home, and my mom drove in from Elgin for the fantastic meal prepared by Lauren's mom. After the feast, Lauren and I drove out to Elgin to spend the night and spend some time at my childhood home. As the Bransen leftovers made their way to the fridges of various other Bransen family members, my mom, not wanting Lauren and I to miss out on the tradition of leftovers, made turkey, taters, and stuffing, just for Lauren and I to take home. 100% pure leftover gold. Thanks mom.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Day 199 - 11.25.10 - Happy Thanksgiving

The bird is the word. Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Day 198 - 11.24.10 - Lovely LaSalle County

Already planning for a half day in anticipation of the Thanksgiving holiday, I was informed late in the day Tuesday that a Wednesday morning court appearance in LaSalle County would be mine. With travel time and the hearing itself, this was my work day in one simple task. It was a nice drive west along I-80 to Ottawa, Illinois, a quaint little town that appeared to be quietly waiting for Thanksgiving. An agreed order was entered before the Court's call, I snapped a photo, and made my way to Park Ridge to relax. Long weekend, commence...

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Day 197 - 11.23.10 - Jumping The Holiday Gun

Normally, I'm against any sort of Christmas prep before Thanksgiving, but on Tuesday Lauren and I picked up some Advent calendars just to be sure our holiday chocolate supply was complete and pre-rationed. Looking forward to December 1st. I bet the first tasty treat will be a wreath... or a bunny... or a beach ball...

Monday, November 22, 2010

Day 196 - 11.22.10 - Monday Night Ozzie

After a long weekend, Ozzie like to unwind on Monday nights in his favorite windowsill chill spot...

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Day 195 - 11.21.10 - Champaign Party (Part 2 - Post Midnight)

Things became progressively... weirder... as the night went on...

Day 194 - 11.20.10 - Champaign Party

On Saturday, a handful of friends from Chicago made the short trip down I-57 to revisit the University of Illinois for the surprise 30th birthday celebration for our good pal Josh. It was a cold, bleak day, and the campus was dead (most of the students had already traveled home for Thanksgiving Break), but our group breathed some life into the otherwise unpopulated grounds, stimulated the economy, and had a blast celebrating our dear friend. It was a wild 12 hours. Happy Birthday JB.

(Alma Mater group shot taken by Mrs. Sally Sebastian)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Day 193 - 11.19.10 - New Ride

The death of one Jeep creates an opportunity to acquire another... and so it went. Lauren and I purchased our first new automobile last month, a 2011 Jeep to replace our 2002 Jeep that was totaled by a lone St. Louis driver and his Kia. I miss the old Jeep, but I must say, driving a new car (that heats up very quickly as winter arrives) is a pleasure.

Day 192 - 11.18.10 - Games @ Fast Eddie's

On Thursday, I hit up one of my favorite spots in the city, yes, Fast Eddie's car wash on Webster. Sparkling clean new car aside, Fast Eddie's offers the video arcade game classic Galaga. The machine gets 50 cents of my money with each visit. So much fun for so little coinage...

Day 191 - 11.17.10 - Ozzie the Watcher

Any noise out on the street, fearless Ozzie is at the window surveying the scene... Photo credit to talented guest photographer L. Grady.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Day 190 - 11.16.10 - Longman & Eagle

The folks who dole out the much coveted Michelin Stars to restaurants have been visiting Chicago. The recipients of the stars were announced this morning and several Chicago dining establishments earned honors. One such establishment is Longman & Eagle, a tiny whiskey bar in Logan Square. Lauren and I went to see for ourselves tonight... The food was outstanding.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Day 189 - 11.15.10 - Winter Wonderland... Kinda

With the official winter season still about 5 weeks away, my work building has decided to set up this disco Winter Wonderland in the lobby. We all know that the winter in Chicago starts earlier than the official start date of December 21, but still, this feels a little early...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Day 188 - 11.14.10 - Orchid Stuff

After we purchased our home, our real estate agent bought us a nice looking orchid plant. It seems to be enjoying the front window of our condo and the color is a good fit for the fall season...

Day 187 - 11.13.10 - Robyn @ Metro

Swedish dance/pop princess Robyn graced Chicago with her presence and rocked a sold out sweat fest at Metro last night. Robyn was certainly not "dancing on her own" on Saturday night...

Saturday, November 13, 2010


Dearest Readers / Viewers,

My apologies for the three weeks of no updates. An uncharacteristic span of incredibly busy day job activities sapped my creativity, drive, and time to take photos and keep up with the blog. I'm disappointed that I was unable to maintain a continuous stream of photos, but I am going to resume the project and hope to carry it through day 365. I thank you for checking out my photos. I hope you continue to visit the site over the next 6 months.

Truly Yours,