Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Aviator's Wife

Book Review

The Aviator's Wife by Melanie Benjamin.

I picked up this book at the same time as several other books. And I started reading it early on.

But I couldn't keep up the pace. Three weeks flew by, my time was up, and I couldn't renew it.

So, I had to take it back to the library. But not before I made a note of what page I was on.

And then I was able to get again. Rather quickly. And I resumed reading.

And then life happened again, and back it went to the library. But not before I made a note of what page I was on. Again.

And I really was still interested in reading this book. Despite appearances to the contrary.

I was keenly interested. I've always been around discussions of aviation. Old, new, concepts. Historical, contemporary, futuristic. And air shows. And even though I don't know much myself beyond the fact that the NASA astronauts train in T-38s and I can recognize the soft whine of VariEze ultralights in flight, I enjoy these discussions.

So naturally I would be interested in reading about the wife of the most famous aviator ever. Mrs. Charles Lindbergh.

Did you know she was an aviator too? With her own aviation records?

Got the book back again, I did. And finish it, I would!

The Aviator's Wife

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Gluten-Free Salmon Chowder

Need More Soups

I came home with a sore throat. I wanted soup. So we made split pea soup with bacon.

And No Soup Boy ate it. He ate it because there was lots of bacon in it. 

The next day I still wasn't feeling well, so we made chili. 

And the No Soup Boy ate it. He ate it because it was full of meat.

The day after that, I still wasn't feeling well and I wanted soup. Again. 

But what soup could we possibly make now, after these others, that the No Soup Boy would eat?

The choices were getting slim. I couldn't convince anybody to have tomato bisque. Or broccoli cheddar.  Or French onion. Or black bean. Minestrone? 

How about salmon chowder? 

I was not expecting a positive response, but I got one! Overwhelmingly positive! And of course it would be gluten-free.

Gluten-Free Salmon Chowder

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Eating Gluten-Free at Barrio Cafe in the Phoenix Airport

Gluten-Free Airport Eating

It wasn't even the holiday season yet, but I was looking at a layover of undetermined length in the Phoenix airport.

Undetermined because my flight had not (yet) been cancelled for weather reasons. But I can evaluate weather forecasts too.

Regardless of whether I got on my scheduled flight or not, I had enough time for a real meal. And I thought I had better take advantage of that time to get just such a meal, since the rest of my day was still so undetermined.

See, layovers are not all bad. Time for a sit-down, leisurely lunch is good. Time to chew. Time to shallow. Time to absorb. Time to digest.

But it wasn't exactly a relaxed lunch. I still didn't know when I was getting out of that airport. Or how many other airports I would have to endure in the same day. Or if I would make it to my intended destination that same day. Or not.

I'm always on the lookout for a gluten-free meal, especially when traveling. Often the gluten-free compromises are less than satisfying.
Barrio Cafe on Urbanspoon

Barrio Cafe in the Phoenix Airport

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Men and Dogs

Book Review

Men and Dogs, by Katie Crouch.

I was reading classics and well-known older novels for awhile. And then I realized I was kind of missing out on the current releases.

So I started looking for newer novels.

This looked like it could be fun. So I read the back. And more than one snippet of praise claimed that this book is "hilarious."

Hilarious? I'm good with hilarious.

And why not? 

Many of the men I know have or have had dogs. The men in my family. Friends. Acquaintances. Hmm... come to think of it, this title could refer to just about a quarter of the population.

Okay, not really. But really.

Anyways, it sounded like this would be worth a try. So try it, I did.

Men and Dogs

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Giddy Up & Go Granola - Notoriously Nutty

Gluten-Free Granola Challenge

I was back visiting in the House of Granola and needed to buy an appropriate snack. While in the House of Granola, one must have granola at hand.

Gluten-free granola for me, that is.

A previous purchase of gluten-free granola left much to be desired.

So the challenge is on. The challenge is to find a suitable gluten-free granola that truly passes as granola. And is tasty.

So I went shopping. And I found this. 

I should have read the package more carefully. Or maybe it is better that I didn't. If I had, I might have been scared off by the name.  

I don't do "giddy up" anything.

I am not a fan of western talk. Or western wear. Or western ware. Or country/western music. 

Never mind that I am from the west. And proud of it.

And I ride horses. Or I used to, back in the day. For hours at a time across BLM land. Through hills like these.

In western saddles.

I'm just not western. 

I'm not even remotely into "western" anything. Despite desperately missing the west.

Please make a note of the difference; west versus western. I am from the west, but I am most definitely not western

I'm sure glad we cleared that up.

If I had read "giddy up" while still standing in that grocery aisle, I might have put this back.

Giddy Up & Go Granola - Notoriously Nutty

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Gluten-Free Lasagna

Feeding More than a Few

It was New Year's Eve morning. I got a call from our friends taking us up on our offer for dinner that night.

New Year's Eve dinner. Cooked by me.

Yes, they did acknowledge that they weren't giving us any notice. But that's okay. They are friends and we had offered days before.

But now I had to scramble. No, not eggs. Scramble to get more ingredients. The menu was already set, but I didn't have enough of everything to add five people.

Now I was cooking for more than eight. With only enough ingredients for up to eight.

Sometimes even I can do simple math.

I was planning on making lasagna, and one pan usually feeds eight. I might have been able to squeeze enough appropriately-sized servings out of one pan for all of us, but I wasn't about to risk it. Not for dinner at my house. I needed more ingredients.

So, out I went to fetch what I needed.

Gluten-Free Lasagna