Monday, August 30, 2010

Lights, Camera, Action!

It’s time.  I need to learn to use my camera.  Kent bought this camera for me over a year ago. (Real Wifetastic…I just had to ask him what kind of camera I have so I could find an accurate picture of it.)Canon%20450D
This weekend, I sifted through hundreds of photos. No really, HUNDREDS of photos I took that look like this…

(Warning…no need to get your glasses or adjust your screens.)
and this…
this… IMG_2560
who could forget this…Grandpa’s 89th…nice.IMG_2510 
and most recently this… 
and last, but not least…this.
Hard to believe I’m married to a photographer isn’t it?!

These blurry, over exposed, poorly posed, disastrously lit images all reveal one thing that is crystal clear…I don’t have a clue how to use this camera.

I think it might be painful at times for Kent to see me with my camera.  He’s eager to teach me something…anything about photography.  Fine. Ok. Uncle! My pictures stink.  I’ll take lessons.

I’ve requested short and frequent lessons vs. long and infrequent lessons.  You see, my attention span for learning technical things like photography is that of a flea.  This should be interesting. 

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Full Pelotonia 10 Recap

We enjoyed an amazing weekend at Pelotonia that started in Columbus and ended in Athens.  Pelotonia is a non profit organization that has one goal: to end cancer.  It is is a grassroots bicycle tour projected to raise over 8 millions dollars this year.  One hundred percent of donations go directly to The James Hospital at OSU to fund cancer research.

Highlights of the opening ceremony, reported by Morgan and Alex, were Chris Spielman’s speech and the Counting Crows Concert. Check out the opening ceremony video.  Morgan is in the video around the 4:00 minute mark.

As usual we documented the weekend with photos.  Here is Morgan giving Alex some last minute instructions and a banana before the 7am start.  Always good to eat “something” before a 100 mile ride. That is Alex’s “I’m looking at you, but not really listening” face.IMG_2866
Morgan got Goofy tattoos for Alex’s group because our pop was…well a little “goofy”.
The starting gate.  It took over 4000 riders 45 minutes to get out of the gate.
Morgan waiting for Alex at the gate.  Morgan was a Pelotonia intern for the summer and did an amazing job.
Alex coming through the start!
Check out Alex’s bike!  Let me tell you a little about the bike that made his ride even more challenging than it already was. He’s a college student and went to a bike shop and purchased the cheapest road bike in the shop.  A circa 1980 bright yellow Schwwin. It was heavy, had two gears and a bent rim until the day before the ride.  He put $80 bucks into it and got full working gears and a new rim. 

Morgan got him the “I love my bike” bell and a water bottle carrier which he taped to his bike right before the ride started.
082110-514082110-493   Alex reported that several riders commented on his bike…”Man your bike is old.” “I can’t believe you are riding that?.”  Poor guy.  I didn’t realize how old it really was until I saw the other 4046 bikes that were actually produced in the 21st century!  But he made it and is maybe a little more proud of himself and a lot lucky considering the wheels he had.

Alex is cool as a cucumber at mile 43!
Time to refuel with some water, Gatorade, pretzels and turkey wraps.
It is raining by mile 70, but Alex is still going strong!
Alex riding through the finish line shute!
Post race debriefing.  Alex was explaining that he, as well as many others, had to walk their bikes up four huge hills.  He said that was the most difficult part of the ride. Notice how white and prune like Alex’s hand is.  That’s from the rain and gripping the handle bars for almost 8 hours! 
This is my favorite pic of the weekend.  Morgan and Alex share a congratulatory hug after Alex crossed the finish line.  They both worked so hard, in different ways, for one organization…to be a part of finding a cure for cancer. I couldn’t be more proud!  Well done. 

Friday, August 20, 2010

Random Friday

Another one of my knafziger faves.


I’ll be tweeting about Pelotonia and Alex’s progress in the 100 mile ride this weekend.  See tweets on the right side of my blog updates.

Good News.  I recently heard that Joe and Shuey, our favorite cover duo, will be playing at Stella Blue once a month!  Next show is Sept. 25th!

If you are looking for something to do this weekend check out the Rug Hooking Show at Sauder Village.

Have a wonderful last weekend before school starts!



Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Pretzel Rolls

I’ve been wanting to try making pretzel bread for a long time and finally found a recipe.  I really liked the way these rolls turned out.  The roll in the picture was my favorite.  It was small, perfectly round and had the right size of slits on top.  I experimented with X’s, slits and plain rolls for decorative tops, but this one was the best.IMG_6933-2 


  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons (1 package) instant yeast
  • 22 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 4 1/2 cups
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted (1/2 stick)
  • 10 cups water
  • 2/3 cup baking soda
  • 1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
  • Pretzel salt (optional)


1. Combine the water, sugar, salt, yeast, flour and butter in a large bowl and mix until well incorporated. (I used our bread maker to mix and knead this recipe.)

2. Knead with an electric mixer or by hand until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4 to 5 minutes (by mixer).

3. Transfer the dough to an oiled dough rising bucket or bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour or until the dough has doubled in size.

4. Preheat the oven to 450ºF. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper and set aside.

5. Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in a large stock pot.

6. In the meantime, turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 10-12 equal pieces. Form each piece into a small, circle loaf. Place onto the parchment-lined sheet pan.

7. Place the loaves into the boiling water, topside down, one at a time, for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula. Return them, right side up, to the sheet pan.

8. Brush the top of each pretzel with the beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with the pretzel salt. Slash with a sharp bread knife once or twice. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving.

(recipe adapted from Alton Brown)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


My youngest brother and sister are both involved with Pelotonia and the big event is this weekend.  Pelotonia is a grassroots bike tour with one goal: to end cancer.  Check out the 2009 opening ceremony video.

My little sister, Morgan, has interned at Pelotonia in Columbus all summer.  I posted about it previously here. I had a chance to visit the Pelotonia office a couple of weeks ago and meet some of the people she works with.  I’m super excited to see the 2010 opening ceremony video because Morgan is in it!  Although she isn’t riding, because she’ll be working the event, she has a virtual rider page that you can check out here.

Alex, Morgan’s twin, will be riding! He chose the 100-mile route from Columbus to Athens.  He is working on raising $10,000,000 dollars by Friday.  He’s well on his way and is already up to $225.00.  If you’d like to help him reach his goal you can visit his Pelotonia page here.

I’m a proud big sister and love that they have both put their time and energy into such a great cause and organization this summer.  I can’t say that my college summers were as meaningful or productive, but that’s a whole other post.  Look for a post ride follow up next week!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Food in Jars

pickleheader We picked our first tomatoes from the garden yesterday.  I was inspired to search for some canning blogs and found Food in Jars.  I’ve been freezing more than canning this year, but I hope to get a couple batches of chili canned soon.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Zoe Fest 2010

My whole family spent some time together in Rehoboth Delaware over the weekend.  It was our first ever family vacation together.  We’ve all vacationed, but  never all 6 siblings together.  It was fun and I hope it becomes tradition. We coined our trip Zoe Fest 2010 because my niece Zoe turned one while we were there.  We don’t get to see her enough so I think we are going to need a Zoe Fest every year!
IMG_0489 IMG_6703
My sister made two banana cream cakes for Zoe’s birthday party and they were delicious. 

Friday, August 6, 2010

Random Friday

 snow Last night I stayed at the Potawatami Inn.  I want to come back when I can check out the toboggan sled.

Check out the huge ONLINE SALE at ANN TAYLOR LOFT.

Don’t forget about the First Friday in Defiance tonight! Let me know if you attend because I’m not able to make it.

I’m leaving today for Zoe Fest 2010! Have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

S Type Creative

IMG_2588I spent some time at S Type Creative a couple of Saturdays ago.  It’s an art gallery in Defiance that hosts the work of 34 different artists.  I’ve been meaning to check it out for months.  I found it on Etsy when I was looking for local artists.
IMG_2592It’s an eclectic store with art created from many mediums with prices that range the spectrum. You’ll find paintings, photography, pottery, jewelry, soaps, cards, spices, candles, lip balm, t-shirts, glass and more. 
IMG_2594IMG_2577  IMG_2583
I met Christi who was working the gallery on Saturday.  She gave me the whole scoop and was very knowledgeable about the history of the gallery, the artists and their work.  Christi also told me about some really cool events Defiance is hosting.   First-Fridays-LogoDid you know Defiance is hosting their third “First Friday” of the summer tomorrow?  I heard there is food, artists demonstrating their creative processes and the businesses stay open later than usual.  Check it out here.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Pizza Margherita

A pizza margherita history lesson according to…

“Pizza Margherita is a pizza prepared according to a recipe of the Italian chef Raffaelle Esposito. The pizza was first made in 1899 when Queen Marghereta visited Napels to escape a cholera epidemic in the north of Italy. The ingredients used to make a Margherita pizza, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and basil, imitate the colors of the Italian flag. Queen Margherata liked the pizza so much that she wrote a thank you letter to Esposito, who decided to name the pizza after the Queen.”

IMG_6435Kent tried and tested many pizza dough recipes until he determined this was the one.  It makes a double dough so we always have one on hand in the freezer.  It’s thin and soft and the best part is the sprinkled cornmeal on the bottom.  Occasionally, we forget the cornmeal and it’s just. not. the. same.

Pizza Dough Recipe

Ingredients: 1 T. Yeast, 1 T. Sugar, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 c. olive oil, 1 c. warm (115 degrees F) water, 2 1/2 c. flour, cornmeal for dusting the pan

1. Preheat oven to  475.
2. Put yeast, sugar, salt, oil and 1 c. of the flour in to a medium mixing bowl and pour in the water.
3. Stir until smooth and the yeast starts to bubble.
4. At this point add the rest of the flour and stir until mixed.
5. When too stiff to stir with spoon, begin kneading.
6. Knead until smooth and no longer sticking to bowl and hands.
7. Allow dough to rise double it's height.
8. While dough is rising grease(we spray with olive oil) pizza pan and dust with cornmeal.
9. When dough has risen enough, punch down and knead for a minute or so then divide in half.  Place half in freezer bag and freeze for later use.
10. Roll out and then stretch to fit pizza pan. 
11. Prebake 9-10 minutes for the margherita pizza. 
12. Brush crust with olive oil and sprinkle salt.  Add tomatoes and mozzarella.
13. Bake for 5 additional minutes.
15. Chiffonade and sprinkle basil on top.

**If making a pizza with sauce and traditional toppings pre-bake for 5 minutes then bake with toppings for 10 minutes.
**Pesto is a good substitution for olive oil on this pizza for a sauce.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Stella Leona Artisan Bars

Do you remember my Stella Leona taste testing post here?  Four of the 13 bars made the cut into production at Stella Leona.  They are perfectly sized with just the right combination of ingredients and flavor.  Although I love them all and prefer to nibble on one of each…my personal fav is the Cherry Almond!
espresso_bar1 cherry_almond_bar1 raspberry_bar1 pb_bar1
Click on pictures for more details.

PS – Thanks to Sara for not leaving me hanging yesterday and admitting she drinks coffee everyday and doesn’t know how to make it either! I feel better because I know Sara is a super intelligent! She can design houses, surely she can make coffee.  It’s just one of those things…and we’re ok with it.

Monday, August 2, 2010


june_cleaver Do you ever do anything and feel really wifetastic?  Last week, I said to Kent, “I know this is totally wifetastic and we’ve lived here for 7 years, but do we have a broom?”  Then I recalled my other real wifetastic moment last week.  Monday morning after Kent went to work I sent him this text…

                              “Need coffee. Please send directions.” 

And you know what…he sent me the directions and I made coffee all by myself and I’m getting really good at it.

I go back to work full time today.  That in itself always brings my wifetasticness to a new level or would it be depth? Anyway…this could become a reoccurring post topic.

PS - Someone, anyone…please comment with something wifetastic you did recently? I mean other people do wifetastic things too…right?