Tuesday, July 31, 2012

August is tomorrow...

Oh, well, about two thirds of the summer is past and about two thirds of the people I talked to these last few days were like 'wow i'm sad it's almost august...'
Now I'm two thirds sure that August is not a bad month. My brother's birthday is in August but there are no US holidays in August. The first roller derby was held in August in 1935! Japan agreed to an unconditional surrender in August in 1945... OK so it's not a GREAT month, but it shouldn't make people sad, should it?

 Two thirds of me really likes Say it aint so, I will not go, turn the lights off, carry me home...

Go Tigers!!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

What's the most number of pizza boxes you've shoved into the kitchen garbage can?
How often do you add fresh grounds to the old one in the coffee-maker and make a fresh pot?
I finally beat a four-suit Spider solitaire game!
The Tigers have lost a couple in a row here and are just 5 games over .500 again.
Cool breeze coming through the kitchen this evening as I ponder the ratio of tuna to Kroger Classic Whip for my sandwich's tomorrow.

Otis the Quat in half-seated delight remarking on the comfortability of this particular position

Attitude of Gratitude

I am thankful for the broccoli and cheese I just warmed up and the toast I had this afternoon. I am thankful for the coffee I had this morning (first cup of the summer) and for the cold water in a bottle I drank. I thank God for the table I am sitting at and the comfortable chair I am sitting in and the beautiful home that we share with Otis the Quat and Sierra the Malamute here in Whitmore Lake. I am especially thankful for the air conditioners that keep our home cool and the fans that move air around, jobs that allow us to pay the bills, and vehicles that take us to our jobs. I am thankful for the medicines that we have for our illnesses and the toothpaste that we use on our toothes.
Also, I am thankful for family: parents and siblings who show their love for us in myriads of ways, and aunts, uncles, and cousins who we see all too seldom but who hold a special place in our hearts.
Especially I am thankful for the woman God brought to me 18 years ago to be my life-partner and soul-mate, who has been my faithful companion through this pilgrimage. May our LORD continue to bless her greatly.

I’m but a stranger here,
Heaven is my home;
Earth is a desert drear,
Heaven is my home;
Danger and sorrow stand
Round me on every hand;
Heaven is my fatherland,
Heaven is my home.

What though the tempest rage,
Heaven is my home;
Short is my pilgrimage,
Heaven is my home;
And time’s wintry blast
Soon shall be over past;
I shall reach home at last,
Heaven is my home.

Therefore I murmur not,
Heaven is my home;
Whatever my earthly lot,
Heaven is my home;
And I shall surely stand
There at my Lord’s right hand.
Heaven is my fatherland,
Heaven is my home

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Recipe #24601

Hi Folks! Yestreday, I used a rubber mallet to beat down a chuckeye steak and grilled it...wifey loved it so life is good!
I stopped at Meijer with twenty bucks for dinner and here's how it all went down: broccoli bunch for 1.78, huge russet potatoes two for a buck, two-tone corn 8 for two dollars ( i only got two ears), Kingsford briquets for 6 bucks, and a good sized chuckeye steak from the nice meat folks at Meijer. US$20.35 and I was on my way home drooling.
Corn shucked on boiled for about 10 minutes, broccoli steamed.
Potatoes sliced a bit with butter and garlic wrapped in foil then on the grill.
The steak I butterflied (butchered, actually), then pounded it for a couple minutes, then smeared on a paste made from about 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and fresh oregano, garlic and rosemary chopped fine. Add provolone cheese slices, a pinch of sea salt and a couple cranks of black pepper and roll it up into a big log. Tie it well.
Sear for a couple minutes on all four sides then cook indirectly for 30 minutes or so. Check for done-ness with a thermo-meter (140 inside for rare, ...) Rest it for 10 minutes and cut off the butcher string. Slice and distribute with taters, broccoli, corn, and some shred cheese or cream cheese with chive and garlic on top of everything.
I used cheap provolone this time due to my budget but I've used Boar's Head in the past and that tasted much better.
Really, you could add anything to the meat before you roll it: onions, peppers, mushrooms!, ...
And as I remember the original recipe I saw on the Food Network, they used a flank steak.

God bless us, everyone.


Wednesday, July 25, 2012


I am home with Sierra the Malamute and Otis the Quat eating leftover hot dogs and Chinese takeout pondering our recent trip to Cleveland ....

12:30 yestreday: wifey calls from work and ask how long it'd take to drive to Cleveland (cuz the Tigers were playing there at 7:05). Just up from  my nap and quite grumpy, I replied 'i dunno...6 hours or so'. She's like noooooo so I googled it and viola! 3 hours. She's like 'I wonder if we could get tickets' so Statboy to the rescue and ticketmaster.com was quite easy to manuver and by 1:15 I was the proud owner of tickets for seats 1 and 2 of Row T at Progressive Field in section 148 (the bleachers under the huge scoreboard).
We hop in the burnt orange Chevy Alveoli rental with my Handel's Messiah cd and a cooler full of diet Mountain Dew and headed south. Made great time getting down there, found a parking spot right across the street from the park and sought out the coldest ten dollar beverage we could get.

One of the great things we experienced at this away game is the number of people we saw with Detroit gear on. The first group of Tigers fans I saw I'm lake Heyyyyyyy and wanted to slap high fives (and tens) with every one of them but, I soon found out, we were almost not a minority. Tons of Verlander, Cabrera, Fielder, and Kaline jerseys in both the home white and the dull away gray (and even a few with something like INGE on the back?) were everywhere in sight and caused us to feel quite at home away from home.

The biggest difference down there I noticed: Detroit fans are pretty laid back, in general. I've been to Piston, Lion, Tiger, Wing, U-M football, Concordia College football, FSU hockey, Detroit Lutheran High West football and U-D Titan basketball games over many many years of being a sports fan in Detroit. When the Tigers win, for instance, there is the build-up in the last inning of course as the crowd roars approval (along with some expletives if it happens to be Philip Douglas Coke or Big Potato closing it out on the mound) for the home team. When the last strike or catch is made, there is a canned tiger roar, some pyrotechnics, and a round of applause which quickly crescendos and then fades as fans loosely and jovially exit to find their vehicles.
In Cleveland, however, fans are treated to local enterprises who distribute myriads of Indian t-shirts between every inning. So fans are on their feet with outstretched arms calling, wanting, pleading with their whole hearts 'THIS WAY!!!!!!!'. Then, right before the 9th inning starts, you can tell something big is about to happen because the begging cries begin to be overshadowed by a stadium-wide exclamation that approximated what I remember hearing when Rowdy Roddy Piper was introduced at Joe Louis Arena while the bagpipes blared in '91. Entire crowd on their feet, music louder and more obnoxious than the typical between-inning loud, and this hairy person comes running toward the mound from the bullpen...why, it's Chris Sanchez, the Closer!
Everyone on their feet, the guy wearing a Cabrera jersey (who, a couple of innings earlier was quite proudly bowing after Miggy launched one into the center field seats) was now getting pelted with Hard Rock Cafe rocks and the anticipation was almost unbearable. Every strike that inning and indeed every out (and rightly so) drew a louder roar. The final groundout caused an eruption the likes of which have not been heard since Krakatoa blew and unleashed her venom (and gas and very hot molten rock)  into the Indian Ocean in 1883. And the volume decrease I was waiting for never came - it just stayed obnoxiously loud! The music (Cleveland Rocks, of course) left us feeling a bit more discouraged than did the loss in and of itself; the shouts of 'Detroit sucks!' as we left the park (which were so bravely uttered) made me long for Handel's Messiah and our burnt orange Chevy.
The scenic route mistake during our drive home notwithstanding, it was a great road-trip getaway with my sweetie.
God bless our Tigers and their fans all over Tiger Nation!

Miguel Cabrera watches his ball after hitting a two-run home run off Joe Smith in the seventh inning of Tuesday's 3-2 loss to the Indians in Cleveland

Monday, July 23, 2012

A New Day

...AND, I need to remember daily our LORD Jesus, also from Saint Paul:

Have among yourselves the same attitude that is also yours in Christ Jesus, Who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross.

Eternal Father, be our strength, our hope, our love to-day...allow me to see past so much ugly in the natural so that all I know are Your spiritual truths. Reign in our hearts, fill us with your wisdom, let our minds be tainted by Your love, and our decisions pleasing to You. Amen

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Leyland on Cabrera

"Most big guys from years ago muscled the ball out of the ballpark. Willie Horton, Frank Howard, guys like that.
"Cabrera is different than that. He has more elasticity in his swing. He has such a great swing, such a smooth swing, but it's not a muscle swing. He gets muscle results with it, though.
"He looks like a golfer who drives the ball 350 yards without really swinging hard."

Thought this was a poignant synopsis  (-*;

Glory to God!!!

When I think about my troubles and my woes; when I want to invite myself to a pity party...LORD, please let me remember Saint Paul:

...I am still more, with far greater labors, far more imprisonments, far worse beatings, and numerous brushes with death. Five times at the hands of the Jews I received forty lashes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, I passed a night and a day on the deep; 
on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my own race, dangers from Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers at sea, dangers among false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many sleepless nights, through hunger and thirst, through frequent fastings, through cold and exposure.
And apart from these things, there is the daily pressure upon me of my anxiety for all the churches...

Saturday, July 21, 2012

A beautiful Saturday

Otis the Quat is a puzzle.
33 grams of carbohydrate in 12 oz of Mike's Hard, 3.2 in a can of Miller Lite.
Ryan Raburn (.171, 1 homer, 12 RBI) is playing left and batting in the two hole to-day. This one angers my wife greatly.
I am so close to beating a four-suit Spider solitaire game I can taste it.
I am learning tricks that allow me to complete tougher sudoku puzzles.
365 days ago the Tigers moved into first place in the American League Central Division. They kept that spot until October.
Raburn, all by himself, left five guys stranded in his five at bats. His one hit brought his average up to .173. Sad face.
The Tigers, though, are in first place in the American League Central Division. 

Friday, July 20, 2012

A recipe and a prayer...

Potato Salad this afternoon will contain:
about 8 medium potatos, diced and boiled with a clove of garlic and pinch of salt about 20 minutes
about a cup of Kroger Classic Whip Whipped Dressing.
a big tablespoon of Meijer Dijon mustard
several cranks of ground black pepper
a little bit of leftover green pepper diced
one Mt.Olive dill pickle diced
some leftover red onion diced
fresh chives from the garden chopped small
about a quarter cup of Mt. Olive pickle juice
turkey bacon fried and diced up (excellent source of flavor)
Mix it all up and cover with Meijer Clear Plastic Food Wrap (handles like a dream) and throw it in the fridge.

Father in Heaven, thank You for our family, for the love and faith we share, and for so many daily blessings. Thank you for our jobs, homes, vehicles, for the times of action, and for the times of rest. Thank you for the recent success of our Tigers and please bless their efforts in this weekend series against the damnable white sox; may all the glory be Yours! Amen

Monday, July 16, 2012

THIS is the day the LORD has made!!!

8:49 am ~ 74 degrees with 69% humidity. Wifey just left for work; vet's coming to look at the dog this morning...Since I drink coffee every day during the school year, I boycott it in the summer, but sometimes I could really use the pick-me-up it provides...Doing up some french toast with a mix I learned from the fine folks at the Feed Bag Cafe in Fowlerville, MI...
8:58 and 76 the keys are slathered in Mrs. Butterworth's Sugar Free Thick-n-Rich Syrup. There is a front coming, the well-dressed Weather Center lady tells me, but it won't be our way for a couple of days.( Move, cold air molecules, move!! Get down here!!)
9:15 and 78 degrees (68 degree dew point) and 71% humidity. Our Tigers gave JV all the run support he needed yestreday and beat the O's to take another road series. They are home for a while now.
12:09 pm and 87 degrees but the humidity has decreased a bit and the vet is gone and Sierra has been diagnosed and pills have been prescribed.
1:16 and 91 degrees but the humidity is down to 36% (how does that drop so fast?) and I've decided the more I listen to the Young Messiah or even the New Young Messiah, the more I need the 17th Century Old Messiah.
2:26 and 93 degrees in the 48353. Was having trouble finding the full concert on Youtube of Handel's Messiah performed by the ACADEMY OF ST. MARTIN IN THE FIELDS directed by Sir Neville Marriner. DublĂ­n, 1992. Listening to bits and pieces is not satisfactory so I bought the cd for five bucks. smiley
3:24 and 94 with some clouds and a NNW breeze, thankfully. Kiss Dynasty was what caused us to call it 'disco dynasty' in the early 80's.
5:11, 94 degrees, a bit a cloud cover, and Pink Floyd's The Wall is one of my all-time favourite albums.
6:23, 92, and I will light the charcoal.

Around here in the summer, there are three segments of time: before the game, Tigers are on, and after the game.

God bless us, everyone.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Walmart Tenderloin, part two

Well, I can't get over how mouth-watering juicy full of flavor this cut of pork turned out to be last night. I may adjust the rub somewhat but will positively inject fresh herbs again! With the chive and garlic potatoes, all we needed really would have been some asparagus or broccoli! The Meijer bread was to die for as well. OH - coulda also used a half gallon of Breyers cookies n cream ice cream probably yeah..
Perennial of the day: Iberis Candytuft.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Walmart Pork Tenderloin

Oh baby never grilled a tenderloin on the grill before but I've done my research and am so ready. Here's the rub mixture:
Equal parts of
sea salt
fresh ground black pepper
seasoning salt
onion powder
garlic powder
crushed red pepper
Cover with plastic and back into the fridge for a couple hours. Tigers are on; we'll start the charcoal in the 6th inning.
Cutting slits in the meat on all sides and inserting fresh garlic and herbs from our garden: oregano, rosemary, sage. Sear for about 2 minutes per side over direct heat and then about 40 minutes over indirect heat turning once. Should read 140-150 when done; rests for ten minutes.
I'm also trying another first. I will slice the meat after it has rested about 3/4 through top to bottom and scoop in garlic and chive cream cheese.
We'll see!!!
Served with potatoes cooked on the grill: in foil wrapped with fresh chives, garlic, and butter.

Shaq's Buick commercial is funny.

Friday, July 13, 2012

MS Hearts is not fair

I'm going out on a limb here, but I am finally daring to voice this publicly. During a several month stretch a few years ago, i kept track of the number of hands in which i received the queen of spades in the deal and in which i received it in the trade. Each of those stats, I figured, should be close to roughly 25%, being there are four of us playing and the deal is random. As I remember, it was more near 40-45% for each. Now that I am playing again, I find I am able sometimes to take all the tricks in say 3 out of 4 tries, win that game, and then for the next 3 or 4 games i won't be able to do anything other than get rid of the highest cards in my hand (the 9 of diamonds, right?) and win by just never having any hearts. THEN there are the stretches where i'll have the queen and maybe one or two other spades - meaning i'm going to have to count that queen at the end of the hand - for like 6 or seven hands in a row. These cycles seem to repeat; sometimes I'll get almost an identical hand two deals in a row.
Maybe 'not fair' is not fair. Maybe 'not random' is better.

Thursday, July 12, 2012


We are the proud people of the most interesting cat in the world. He was named Otis by the folks who put a microchip in his neck but he thinks his name is James Bond. He (when he is punched in, after all the naps) chases evil flies, bees, moths, and even moving objects unseen by us with two legs all in the name of Her Majesty's Secret Service. We're not supposed to let him outside (he rarely tries - another oddity) and he is fixed (fixed boycats are THE best pets!!) and he fills his litter box about every other day (thirsty, thirsty boy in this heat). He jumps up onto our laps with the perfunctory 'murrt' and jams his head into every arm and leg he can. He doesn't purr real loud like some quats I've had but he climbs on our heads in bed at 3 in the morning with the best of them! I am thankful for the amusement and cheap entertainment he provides.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Built a planter box to go right next to the patio; put coral bells, dianthus, thyme, sagae hosta,  oriental limelight (artemisia) in there...

the 2012 box
Doing sudoku listening to Souxsie and the Banshees... life is good.

Sunday, July 8, 2012


The hot hot heat has passed thankfully, there are some clouds to-day and temps are low 80s. Tigers have won 5 straight and don't play again until Friday. D Young has homered in the four games since ESPN awarded him the LVP. We got nine racks of perennials yestreday in Hartland. I cooked my bride an omelet this morning with fried potatos. To-day i ate some pretzels, some veggies dipped in ranch, a bratwurst from like days ago, a grilled cheese sammich, and some strawberry shortcake.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Celebrating 'The Fourth'!

James Cagney, John Philip Sousa, loud bangs, hot dogs on the grill and potato salad, red white and blue petunias, and hot, hot, hot!!!

Eternal Father and King of kings, thank You for allowing us to live in this greatest country and thank you for the freedoms that many have fought and died for. Thank You for Your Son, Jesus, and for His redemptive Work on the cross. Keep us safe, especially at this holiday time, and be pleased always with our thoughts, words, and deeds. You are our Strength, our Hope, our Salvation. Amen


Monday, July 2, 2012

anecdote for a hot monday

In my old age, I happened one day to look across the table at a recipe I had written out just hours earlier. Forgetting I had just written this recipe down hours earlier, the penmanship looked not unlike my dear mother's; for just a quick moment I thought, 'Now what has she sent me recently?'. Funnier yet, I, in the milliseconds immediately after this thought, noticed both my brother's spidery handwriting and my sister's comely flowing script in this recipe. (Dad's slanty loud all caps plays no part in to-day's story:-)
The structure of the earth's crust, interpreting dreams, the characteristics of siblings based on birth order, any type of mathematics, and now, graphology all interest me quite so.