Thursday, February 28, 2013

Just like Grandma used to make

One of my favorite foods that my Grandma Jernigan used to make is cheesy potatoes. Grandma wasn't a big one for rigid recipes with specific amounts, so that's kind of how I do these. Sometimes they come out better than others; tonight they came out especially delicious, when the recipe went something like this:

Boil some cut-up and peeled potatoes in salted water until they are soft enough to mash. Drain and mash. Toss in some butter. A half a stick might be enough. Put in more sour cream than you think you need. I'd say at least a cup. Now add grated sharp cheddar cheese by the handful. Stir it all up. Hmmm . . . better add some more cheese. Stir some more. Press it into a casserole dish and bake it. I think I did these at 350 degrees for 30 or 40 minutes:

This goes especially well with ham!

Escape from New York

Annabelle and I took a long weekend in Rochester, where she interviewed on Monday as a finalist for a special program in the university's engineering school. I was leery of traveling to upstate New York in the middle of winter, but it never really occurred to me that we might find ourselves snowed OUT of Kansas rather than snowed IN in Rochester. That's precisely what wound up happening though.

The weekend itself was lovely. We stopped by the campus bookstore Saturday afternoon to buy more URochester swag. When we came out, we noticed several trees and light posts that had been "yarn bombed":

This made Annabelle inordinately happy. As she put it, "I might not knit sweaters for trees . . . but I would definitely be friends with people who would knit sweaters for trees!"

After a wonderful dinner with friends, we returned to the university to watch The Sixth Sense, put on by the Cinema Club. Unfortunately, they had to cancel due to technical problems, but we still enjoyed seeing the campus at night. I got a couple cool pictures of the library:

On Sunday we slept in, went to an Indian restaurant for lunch, and then set about exploring a couple of local malls. We were moseying through Lord & Taylors when I got a call from Delta that our flight home the following evening had been cancelled due to weather that hadn't even happened yet. My stress level went up at that point and stayed up for the rest of the trip, but I tried not to let that interfere with our good time.

I dropped Annabelle at the university late that afternoon for her pre-interview dorm stay. On my way back to the car, I stopped to take a picture of this adorable tank of some sort:

Back at the hotel, I got some very happy texts from Annabelle saying she was having a marvelous time, so I settled in to watch the Academy Awards but fell asleep before the big ones at the end of the evening.

Monday was a whirl of activity at the university--meals and class visits and departmental presentations and, of course, Annabelle's interview, which she felt went quite well. Later that day, we moved out of our hotel and into our friends' house, where we stayed up late tracking the weather in Kansas on our iPads and worrying about whether our flight the next day was really going to make it.

I have to give credit to Delta. I was tracking flights on the Kansas City airport website until late in the evening and starting again Tuesday morning, and it went something like this:


Sure enough, our flights on Tuesday went off without a hitch. I held my breath when we landed, but it was a pretty smooth landing:

Fred was there to meet us and take us home. The onramp to the interstate was rather sloppy, but the rest of the roads were pretty good considering the amount of snow that has hit this area in the past week:

I had Fred slow down on the drive home so I could snap a couple pictures of this place that I always admire:

I especially like their covered bridge:

Even though the trip home was a bit stressful, it was a great weekend, and Annabelle is confident that she has made an excellent choice for college:

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Snow day

Nothing like a snow day for getting your blog up to date! AND we received word a few hours ago that school will be closed again tomorrow, so we've got yet another snow day to look forward to. Some snowy pictures, especially for you Florida folk!

My Sentra this morning:

And after the plow came by this afternoon:

Fred preparing to go out and shovel:

Getting started:

You never know what you might find under the snow!

Me, trying to take credit, even though we all know that there is no way I would ever create a path any wider than a single shovel-width:


"Harlem Shake" videos are popping up all over, which inspired Mike to produce one for the FSU Powerlifting Team:

Those crazy kids! Glad to see that he's having fun though. Plus, the video is up over 8500 views, which is way more than any of my videos has ever gotten.

Way to go, Mike!

Days of wine cats and roses

First crocus of spring

[Have I mentioned lately how much I love having a phone that (a) works as a phone and (b) takes awesome photos?!]

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Give me down to there hair, shoulder length or longer

We've had a fair amount of drama around here in the past couple month, but the good kind of drama. First, back in January we went to see Billy Elliot: The Musical. Such a good show! It was closing night, and as we left the theater, we saw the truck ready to strike the set and move on to the place:

Then today we went to see Hair at the Kaufmann Center:

Fred's not a huge fan of Hair, but he's a good sport to go along, as Annabelle and I both love it. One thing we could all agree on: It was really exciting to get to go see a show at the Kaufmann!

Saturday, February 02, 2013

Meanwhile back in Kansas . . .

. . . Annabelle has been having some fun of her own. Tonight was the Winter Royalty dance at her school!

Sorry I missed helping her get dressed, but I hope she has a great time!


I have been hiding out in DeLand since Thursday. The only people in Kansas who knew of my plans were Fred and Annabelle. I was scared to tell anybody else, lest they might mention it on Facebook ("Have fun in Florida!") and ruin the surprise, the surprise being the party that Jeff and Jenny's friend Kim planned for Jenny's 40th birthday. This afternoon we converged on Dave & Buster's on International Drive and stunned Jenny, who thought she was just going there to play a little air hockey as part of a day of birthday treats that Jeff had arranged.

A birthday girl must accessorize properly:

We had a really great turnout for the party:

Bonnie and Jenny

For her present, I knitted Jenny a pair of wool socks in colors inspired by Van Gogh's "Starry Night." Here she is modelling them (I'm not sure Jenny understand how socks work):

All together now:

"Happy birthday, Jenny!"