Sunday, March 4, 2012

What's For Dinner . . .


I've been looking for a good home made mac 'n cheese recipe forever. It seems like whenever I make it at home it always turns out grainy and weird. so I'm hoping this will turn out creamy and delightful.

Other than that, I'm just hanging out here on a lazy Sunday.  We were going to go to a Bazaar on base today but they always just have the same old stuff so I figured we'd seen it all.  The only thing that would have made it worth would have been the wine, cheese and some brats.  So, instead, I'm still in my pajamas while the hubs is off to the store acquiring the ingredients needed for the above mentioned mac 'n cheese.  My goal is to do at least 3 loads of laundry and to clean up my kitchen/dining room area.  Wish me luck!

Hope everyone is enjoying their Sunday!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Best Christmas In A While

The hubs and I decided to spoil each other this last Christmas.  This is one of the things I bought him since he's such a huge Star Wars geek.  I think he looks pretty fly for a white guy. :)

Thursday, March 1, 2012

A Brief Overview of Our Trip to Dublin

 I know this one is a long time in coming but here are some photos of our trip to Dublin over Veteran's Day in November.  I'm a horrible photographer so none of these do the city justice. The city was fantastic.  We had some excellent food at a restaurant called the Elephant & Castle (I ate a dish called Eggs Idaho for brunch!).  I drank hard ciders exclusively because they don't sell them draught over here in Germany unless you go to an actual Irish pub. I found out I actually like Guinness which was a revelation to me.  I also discovered I *really* like Jameson and cranberry juice.  I know, I know! Whiskey lovers all over are groaning and saying you never mix whiskey, but in my defense, they made it for me.  At the end of your tour in the Jameson Distillery you get a free drink and one of the options is Jameson mixed with cranberry juice.  It's lovely. 

I ain't 'fraid of NO GHOSTS

 We did the Hop On/Hop Off city bus tour for the day and it was hilarious listening to the driver's commentary. One driver especially had a lot to say about Molly Malone.  I never realized she was viewed as a loose women, but then again I never really looked into her history. 

Molly Malone - the dish with the fish

 This was Dave finally taking a turn at the camera-ing. I was selected to do a whiskey taste comparison after the official tour was over.  I tasted Jameson, Johnny Walker and Jack Daniels.  I by far prefer the Jameson.  Never been a huge scotch fan but Jameson is getting pretty high on my list.

Whiskey comparison at the Jameson Distillery

Dublin on the river Liffey
We had a fabulous long weekend in the city and I wish we could have stayed longer.  Anyone who knows me could tell you I'd move the UK or Ireland and live there in a heartbeat.  Alas I don't think it will happen but it makes me happy knowing that I've been there and will have those memories.  Especially this one . . .

Amazing photo op at the Disney store

Versailles Is Amazing

We went to Versailles the weekend before Valentine's Day just to get out of the area for a while.  I always feel like a snob when I mention how many times we've been to Paris but it's just so ridiculously easy to get to!  Take a 15 minute car ride to the train station, the train ride itself is only 2.5 hours and it drops you off right in the city.  Easy peasy lemon squeezy. 
Recreation of Marie Antoinette's bedroom

Versailles is on the edge of Paris but is easily accessible by train.  We went on a Sunday when it was cold but fairly sunny. It was so amazing being around that type of history and seeing the weird and lavish way the rooms were decorated.  I'm sure they not have been completely left as they were back in their hey-day but it was really fantastic to see what it could have looked like.  In all honesty it's probably a very historically accurate recreation so it's not hard to get lost in the thought of  "Marie Antoinette stood at that fireplace" or "Louis sat in that chair."

Me and the hubs
Clock above the main entrance and over our heads in the picture above
We spent most of the day just wandering inside the palace.  Unfortunately the gardens behind the palace were closed.  I'm not sure if it was due to the weather or if it was something else but I was really disappointed. I'm hoping we can manage to squeeze in one more trip in the spring or summer before we leave Europe so we can visit the gardens.

Gates of the inner courtyard
We ate lunch at the restaurant inside the palace called "Angelina".  Apparently this restaurant got its start in Paris on the Rue di Rivoli and is known for it's hot chocolate.  Sadly we did not know this at the time and we got tea.  I know . . . it saddens my heart too.  The good thing that came of it though was that I found a green tea with mint in it that I love!! The only problem is they don't sell it here in Germany and it cost 12€ in Paris. Yikes! At the current exchange rate that's roughly $16 for a box of tea.  But it's totally worth it.  I can't seem to make myself stop drinking it so it will last.  But then again I bought to drink so why not drink it, eh? Knowing me it won't be the last time we'll go to Paris so I'll just make sure to include a stop at "Angelina" the next time I'm in town . . . or at the palace.  When I do I'll be sure to comment on their hot chocolate and see if they do it better than the Germans.

Glimpse of the garden from inside the Hall of Mirrors

I don't know what it is about Paris.  I seem to only blog anymore when I'm in  or have just come home from Paris but I love sharing my experiences with everyone. Each trip has been so different and amazing; you really could spend a lifetime there getting to know the city.  For me it just holds a certain appeal.  And it's not the food or the wine or the art but just the city itself.  It's inviting and just a wonderfully easy get away that I love taking advantage of.

As for doing a blog NOT centered around Paris I hope to be doing that very soon.  We have a trip planned to Scotland for our anniversary and if the hubs approves we'll be doing a trip to Lucerne, Switzerland the weekend after his birthday.  Fondue, anyone?