Sunday, November 29, 2015

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: 2015 - Week 47

Checking in for the week of November 22 through November 28.

Luther: Biography of a Reformer (Frederick Nohl) - A bit dry at times, but interesting nonetheless. It definitely went into far more detail than I was given during my Lutheran school education felt board presentations. I learned more about the background history, what was going on in the world at the time and what kind of man Luther was. I received it as a gift a while ago and its been sitting on my bookshelf. I'm glad I finally read it and got a mini refresher course in the reformer.
When Will There Be Good News? (Kate Atkinson) - This series has improved as it has progressed, but one this has not changed: It ropes me in quickly, then falls off to a trudge before picking up the pace again.

We had chicken sandwiches, rigatoni with sausage and roasted peppers, and some hot dogs, before traveling to Virginia for Thanksgiving, where we had the traditional holiday feast.

Cinnamon Frosting (BBW)

For $3, I was powerless to resist this wee Christmas cactus. Here's hoping I don't kill it.

Dinner assembly.

Already well on the road by the time the sun started to wake up.

Be still my heart.

Appreciating the last bits of a Virginia sunset.

Autumn hanging on by a thread.


Red, white, and blue.


Saturday, November 28, 2015

This Week on My TV: November 28, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Sleepy Hollow, 3x08 Novus Ordo Seclorum) Wait a second. Why can Crane suddenly read those scribblings Jenny left behind? Didn't they imply, when they first found them, that Crane didn't even know what they meant? -- I'm disappointed the mention of Ben Franklin didn't lead to a good rant from Crane. -- Joe [to Crane]: Ok, I'm still not used to the way you name drop. -- "I'm not sure what any weapon's going to do against a god." THANK YOU, JOE. But you all will still draw your guns on him anyway, won't you. -- "Asset we were cultivating"? Abbie? What was that about? And who was Reynolds on the phone with? -- Wait, did Nevins get away? Sophie sure seems to think so. I thought Pandora POOFed him. -- Abbie: I found this in lockup, belonged to Nevins. It looked old, magical, and now, Crane-ish. -- Abbie: How do you like our odds, Crane? Be honest. Crane: Three mortals facing a woman of legend and an ancient deity. -- LOL: Crane's face when he used the taser on Pandora. Wait...guns don't work, but a taser does?? -- LOL: That is some Once Upon a Time level bad CGI. -- Seriously, Jenny, Joe, and Abbie can't all be dead now, right?

**(Madam Secretary, 2x08 Lights Out) Interesting to see Russell's home life. -- Finally, some Mike B! -- Mike B: You're the one who brought Judas to the White House. Russell: A lecture on loyalty from the Dark Prince of K Street? -- Russell: Traitors are like serial killers. they don't stop at one. -- Elizabeth: You know, I get we're duty and honor bound, committed to lives of service and all that, but this part where we can't talk about the most important things that we do all day...that cannot be healthy for us. Henry: The most important part of my day is this, coming home. Elizabeth: Oh, you're good. -- I totally appreciate that they let Elizabeth's hair be messy at home. It's part of what allows the show to "feel real." Just like I love that they make the characters awkward and unpolished with each other in the office. -- Russell: The way I see it, you can go out the back door wtih your dignity intact or out the front door in handcuffs.


Sunday, November 22, 2015

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: 2015 - Week 46

Checking in for the week of November 15 through November 21.

Sugar Cookie Murder (Joanne Fluke) - Short and sweet (the second half of the page count was dedicated entirely to recipes from the Christmas Potluck), this was a quick, easy read. I liked the different spin they gave the whodunnit outcome. I definitely did not see that coming and thought it was someone else entirely. Enjoying Hannah's adventures, as usual, but I can't really figure out why she's so hung up on Mike. Cute or not, he's a total jerk most of the time. Guess I'll have to keep reading to see when she figures this out for herself.
Luther: Biography of a Reformer (Frederick Nohl) - I try to get some non-fiction into my reading diet from time to time.

Tortellini soup with garlic bread and a salad. Sausage burgers (with roasted red pepper and a slice of provolone, yum!). Romaine-wrapped tilapia with wild rice. Steaks and some au gratin potatoes.

Cinnamon Frosting (BBW)
Macintosh Spice (YC) - Anything like smells like pie is fine by me.

I'm kind of obsessed with the way the lights in my papier-mâché pumpkins on top of the entertainment cabinet reflect on the ceiling when all the other lights are off.

When you cook with wine and don't want the remains of the bottle to go to waste.

My kryptonite.

Christmas is making its way into WDW!

Decisions, decisions...

When at WDW, don't forget to look up, too!

Main Street USA windows are so much fun to explore. you see what I see??

Royal Christmas decor.

Even the treats get in on the festive fun!

I went with the cookies 'n' cream fudge. ;-)


Saturday, November 21, 2015

This Week on My TV: November 21, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Greys Anatomy, 12x06 The Me Nobody Knows) Mer: You sent a sex tape? Pastor patient: To the entire congregation. Penny: Oh God. Pastor: Can we not talk about Him right now? -- Penny being assigned to Mer's service has to feel like being kicked while you're already down for Mer. Probably for Penny, too, but I have no real sympathy for her at this point. -- Does this doctor April knows from her military medical field trips to the Middle East have some kind of history with Owen? Because that was a weird reaction by Owen. -- Alex seeking out Mer made me feel all fuzzy and warm. He's being her Person! -- April and Jackson are made up characters on a tv show and I'm *still* uncomfortable "being present" for their interactions. Like I'm stuck in a car with a couple that's having an argument. -- Mer: Our shame can choke, kill us, rot us from the inside. Don't let it.

**(Once Upon a Time, 5x07 Nimue) I appreciate the history lesson of how Excalibur came to be, how Merlin became immortal, and how the Dark One's dagger became separated from the sword. It was a well constructed tale. I'm less certain how I feel about the way they cast certain roles away from what might be expected. "Not all wizards have white beards," indeed, Merlin. -- The timeline in this episode (for the history lesson) amused me. We went from the descriptive "thousands of years ago, before the time of Arthur" to regular old "200 years ago" to the oh so vague "years earlier." -- Arthur is just straight up evil. And I don't know how I feel about that bending of legend. -- I totally knew the original Dark One was going to be Nimue. -- Regina: Tell your timbers to stop shivering, pirate. -- I wonder why the other Dark Ones all have that scaly (?) skin but Emma does not? And it seemed to happen almost immediately with Nimue, and I think also with Rumple, if I can remember that far back? Why is Emma "immune" to that then? -- What made Emma turn and embrace the darkness? She clearly hadn't at the point that crazy Arthur summoned Merlin using Excalibur. I'd imagine they have to flashback more and finish the story of what happened.

**(The Good Wife, 7x07 Driven) Louis Canning is such a manipulative little troll. Who is clearly throwing a lot of work Alicia's way. To what end? -- You can tell that Alicia feels dirty voting the way Frank Landau tells her to. -- Crouse unsettles Alicia, which just means every one of their exchanges amuses me. Also amusing: Eli's door banging into his desk every time anyone opens it. -- That was quite the unexpected...bedroom transaction between Alicia and Peter. -- Eli makes the best faces. I just can't decide whether his reacting to finding Peter and Alicia in the bedroom or Jackie's arrival to announce her engagement to Howard was my favorite.

**(The Big Bang Theory, 9x08 The Mystery Date Observation) Penny: Damn, you're sneaky. Bernadette: Yeah, but I'm little so it's cute. -- Leonard: But it's the movie Ben Stiller doesn't want you to see. Penny: It's the movie your wife doesn't want you to see. -- I can't decide which made me laugh more: Bernadette spying on Amy's date. Amy's date being obsessed with Sheldon. Or Sheldon's Craigslist puzzle game to find a new girlfriend actually leading to a pretty cute girl showing up at his door and him shutting the door in her face.

**(Scandal, 5x07 Even the Devil Deserves a Second Chance) Fitz: To Congress. May their heads one day depart from their asses. -- Jake: The woman I love killed the woman I used to love. Or the woman I used to love killed the woman I love. I can't figure it out. -- Grieving or otherwise, Olivia, Jake has called you out on exactly what you are. Screaming at him to get out doesn't change any of it. -- Quinn: She's the President's girlfriend. The White House is always our client. I hate the new normal. -- David: I didn't ask you to sit. I said take a seat, Elizabeth, so take. a damn. *seat*. -- Lizzie: You don't like me, do you? David: I wasn't trying to be subtle. I *don't* like you. -- After all that ranting, Lizzie and David end up getting busy in his office?? While VP Susan is out in his reception area with a four-pack of wine coolers, because she has a crush on him? I said we needed more David on this show, again, but WHAT IS HAPPENING?? -- *Very* striking final scene, Liv telling Fitz what to do while she stands on the Presidential Seal in the middle of the Oval Office.

**(Blue Bloods, 6x08 Unsung Heroes) Frank: Preaching to the choir is for showboats and sissies. -- Quite possibly my favorite moment ever on this show was Frank cracking himself up making punny jokes no one else thinks are funny. -- Two things I am over: the very Law and Order: SVU-ish feel to this serial killer Danny is tracking, and Linda coming off as whiny rather than worried and shaken up.

**(Blindspot, 1x09 Authentic Flirt) Oh good grief. Weller couldn't even shave when he was getting all spiffy for a formal event? Stubbly scruff with a tux is thumbs down. -- Awkward: Weller putting wedding rings on Jane's hand as part of their married-couple cover. Couldn't he have just handed them to her to put on herself? -- Wow. There are apparently a lot of folks using that secret library book code. And they must be up to no good, because now Patterson now has a dead (ex)boyfriend, after he decided to follow the woman using the books to leave a message. The weird thing is that I can't figure out if the guy following him was with the girl or also following the girl. -- That bird drawing toward the end is going to show up as a tattoo at some point, isn't it...

**(Reign, 3x05 In A Clearing) I wonder if this is really the last we're going to see of Nostradamus. If so, then I'm glad they provided some resolution after seeing him ride off, half dead, leaving the viewers wondering. -- Blah. I'm not a fan of this whole Delphine thing, either her romance with Bash or this whole medieval serial killer bit. -- Even despite Mary signing it, I really wonder if Elizabeth would have honored that peace treaty. -- That scene in the clearing was heart wrenching. It was played out so well. -- With Francis dead now (and hopefully no more supernatural shenanigans), I wonder what lies ahead for Mary. With her mother also dead, will she return to Scotland to rule? Is she going to go after Elizabeth? Will this strange affection Catherine has for her keep her in France?

**(The Middle, 7x08 Thanksgiving VII) Brad: I'm going to write you a reality check, payable right now. -- This episode had me all out of sorts, what with Axl crying all over the place and sean still being all hippie instead of clean cut All American Boy Next Door. Also, why wasn't Darrin invited to hang out? -- Brick playing poker was hilarious, especially when he tried to bluff.

**(Modern Family, 7x07 Phil's Sexy, Sexy House) The scenes in the "sexy house" Phil is trying to sell, with everyone sneaking in, not realizing everyone else has the same intention, made this one of the funniest episodes I have seen of this show in ages. -- Haley and Andy! Haley and Andy! I was actually yelling at Andy through the tv (as one does) because I couldn't believe he was letting her walk away with *that* being his "last adventure" before getting married and then Haley runs back to him for that kiss. They *have* to get together now...right??

**(Madam Secretary, 2x07 You Say You Want a Revolution) Elizabeth (to Matt): Someone woke up on the cynical side of the bed this morning. -- I kind of love that Elizabeth and Henry call Alison 'Noodle'. -- I'm over every tv show making the police out to be bad guys. Like really over it. There are bad apples in every subgroup of society. Making all cops out to be over aggressive guys with a power trip is an unfair characterization for all the many, many more to protect and serve. -- Back to things I really love love: Elizabeth and Henry's relationship. They act like people who still love each other, which is a refreshing change of pace in the cheating-spouse heavy storytelling of tv land. -- That scheming between Sterling and Senator Parisi will, hopefully, spell the end of Sterling's presence. I don't care for him. Leave it to that jerk to be the thing that being Elizabeth and Russell together as a team.

**(Grey's Anatomy, 12x07 Something Against You) Mer: Well I thought that I could treat her like any other resident but that was really hard because I wanted to punch her in the face. Like a lot. -- Between Penny and Riggs, there sure are a whole lotta hirings going on that are ticking off other surgeons. I get not running the decision to hire Riggs by Maggie or anyone else, but you'd think Bailey would have to run stuff by Mer since she's on the board. -- Amelia: I fix brains. I give you your soft gooey center, the hard candy shell is your department. -- I was all set to feel badly about the "trivia night" bust with Arizona and Webber, given how enthusiastic he was, until I saw him switch gears and get right down to business as Arizona's wing man.-- Ok, seriously, what is the deal between Owen and Riggs?? They've dragged on the suspense long enough now. -- I do love that Mer is stepping up as Owen's Person, asking "Do we hate him?" about Riggs. It's good to see that dynamic between the surgeons didn't fade away with Cristina's departure. -- Oh, please don't make Riggs turn out to be a new love interest for Mer. Bleh.

**(The Blacklist, 3x08 Kings of the Highway) Apparently Samar's desire to capture Liz and make her face the consequences of her actions now takes a backseat to the loyalty she feels to Red for his involvement in providing her closure with her brother. -- Cash: That girl is nuttier than a bag of cashews. -- Why do the bad guys always ride crotch rockets? -- That doll head Red used to break himself free was straight. up. creepy. -- Oh, Aram. You ratted Samar, Liz, and Red to Ressler out of jealousy? Really? -- The Chairman lady just shot the Attorney General lady!! Holy. Crap. Is Chairman lady part of the Cabal? -- What did Attorney General lady whisper as she was dying? "Tommy Market?" What the heck is that?? -- Crap. Ressler has Liz and Dembe in custody now? And we're supposed to wait til JANUARY 7 to find out what happens next?!

**(Blue Bloods, 6x09 Hold Outs) I can't believe how much Eddie looked like Linda when she was dressed up undercover as an old lady. (Sorry, Linda!) -- At one point that pregnant wife of the new police officer Frank was swearing in said "These days when I sit down I can't get back up." Not to nitpick, but since she was standing up when she said that, it can't be true. -- Oh goodie. The Mayor got re-elected. -- Baby Francis Francisco? LOL

**(Sleepy Hollow, 2x04 Waiting for Taleju) Things that made me snort during this episode: Shardectomy. Mistletoe as a weapon to defeat this week's evil. -- Again with the regular guns. ::facepalm:: --  Crane: Did you call me strange? Oh, good grief. How will I ever endure? -- Ah! This week's historical figure: Daniel Boone! -- I'm not sure how, exactly, that plan *worked* to get the evil creature thugs to kill each other, but...ok. -- Crane: Sometimes, it seems as though the unbeatable enemy is the twenty-first century. -- I did NOT see that coming with Sophie being an undercover agent. -- So, where did Jenny go? And who the crap is that hooky guy??? Pandora's boss?


Sunday, November 15, 2015

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: 2015 - Week 45

Checking in for the week of November 8 through November 14.

Chasing Fireflies (Charles Martin) - It started slowly. Not so slowly that I ever seriously considered putting it down, but slowly enough that I assumed I'd muddle through it, and upon completion, probably never think about it again. I couldn't have been more off base. The story started slowly, but it built, layer upon layer, like all the good stories do, until you feel like you know the characters personally...and kind of wish you did. Parts of this book were harsh and painful to read, but they gave the story a depth that couldn't have been otherwise achieved. There was a smattering of humor and a pinch of mystery, and even though I suspected the "big reveal," it made it no less satisfying. I will even admit that there was more than one part of the book that left tears trailing silently down my cheeks, and books almost never have that effect on me. It wasn't the best book I've ever read, but it was good -- *really* good -- and it's going to stick with me for a long while, would be my guess.
Sugar Cookie Murder (Joanne Fluke) - This one should take long to finish, since half the book is comprised of recipes.

Burgers and tater tots. Pot roast with mashed potatoes and carrots. Spaghetti and meatballs. WDW with friends = Yak and Yeti for lunch, California Grill for dinner.

Frosted Cranberry (BBW)
Ghostly Treats (YC) - Light vanilla and sugar, just like a marshmallow.
Apple Pumpkin (YC) - This was surprisingly delightful. Sometimes I smelled the apple, other times the pumpkin. Never both at the same time though!
Vanilla Caramel (YC) - This was the perfect vanilla blend for autumn.
Cinnamon Frosting (BBW) - Spicy sweet.

I can't believe this is going to be closing down soon. I wonder what it will look like after its refurbishment? In the mean time, trying to capture as many details as I can.

Wanna strike up a conversation with every fifth person you pass? Come dressed like this to WDW while the Patriots are playing.

Accidental selfie! (I swear I'm having fun. It was just way too bright outside for me to be without sunglasses.)


Evening commute.

I have long enough hair now to make a bun. For the first time since 1996.


Stretching is important. And, clearly, so! much! fun!


Test Track after dusk is my favorite.


Chickens! For real, the creative ways they theme decorations on WDW property never fails to amuse me. This was in Harambe, in Animal Kingdom.

Kali River Rapids, from above.

The view from the observation deck outside Top of the World Lounge, in Bay Lake Tower.

There's a tiny Contemporary in my drink!!

Dinner with friends.


Saturday, November 14, 2015

This Week on My TV: November 14, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(The Good Wife, 7x06 Lies) Alicia: Why'd you punch that judge? Jason: I was angry. A: Why were you angry? Jason: Don't you ever get angry? Alicia: Yes, but I don't punch people. Jason: Maybe you should. -- Eli: How is it you can lurk in an office the size of a phone booth? -- Diane: A lot of things that aren't fair are true!

**(Madam Secretary, 2x06 Catch and Release) Dmitri: Half the time, I don't know whether you're helping me or trying to kill me. -- Nadine: Ma'am, you have a three hour dinner next week with Candace Templeton. Elizabeth: Ha. However did you manage to find the time in my schedule, Blake? Blake: It's my super power. -- I knew Ivan was going to take his own life as soon as he "agreed" to see the open minded general

**(The Blacklist, 3x07 Zal Bin Hasaan) Some guy: What are you doing here? Red: Drinking your Bellinis. -- Samar's brother: What do you want? Red: Oh, another spin of the bottle in Melanie Wrightman's basement, but I'll settle for you. -- Red is so sexy. I don't even know what, exactly, it is about him but rawr. -- I completely busted out laughing when Ressler kicked the garden gnome. -- Ohhhkaaaay, Ressler and Samar? Where did *that* come from?


Sunday, November 8, 2015

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: 2015 - Week 44

Checking in for the week of November 1 through November 7.

Chasing Fireflies (Charles Martin) - I'm very curious how the "mystery" aspect of this story is going to tie into the rest.

Comfort food central: tuna casserole; scalloped potatoes and ham; fish sandwiches; grilled cheese.

Pumpkin Cupcake (BBW)
Chocolate Layer Cake (YC) - I almost never like chocolate scented candles. They just smell wrong to me. This one was surprisingly ok though. I don't think I would burn this scent often, but every once in a while would be all right with me.
Lake Sunset (YC) - I prefer this one in limited doses. This is an interesting scent. It is both fresh and lightly perfumed. It reminds me a lot of what a spring early evening smells like, here in Florida, actually, when the air is just starting to get a touch of cool dampness and you can really smell the flowers that bloomed during the day.
Cider Donut (YC) - Oh, heaven. If I prefer the previous two used sparingly, then I want this one all the time. Doooonuuuuuts.
Frosted Cranberry (BBW) - Time to change up the candle in the bedroom. I love how tart and fruity this one is.

T thinks nutcrackers are totally creepy. So, of course, while I am browsing a shop at EPCOT, I feel the need to snap this pic and text it to him. Then, I looked at that Santa nutcracker, kind of in the center, and he's kind of sneering at me and...yikes.

Oh, just appreciating the queue ambiance while waiting for another round of Soarin'.

Hey there, sunshine.

I pinned this idea, like, a million years ago. Finally did it with those cute mini  pumpkins that were my October centerpiece, updating it for November. I *love* it.

November on the calendar.


Saturday, November 7, 2015

This Week on My TV: November 7, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Madam Secretary, 2x04 Waiting for Taleju) This Stevie and Harrison thing is never going to go away, is it... -- Nadine: There's nothing unsavory. Just thought I'd get rid of the hanging chads, so to speak. Daisy: Oh, I get it. You don't want to be looking at these things at 2am, after a glass of wine and too much Adele. Not that I speak from experience. Nadine: Scotch and Joni Mitchell, for me. -- Henry: Never underestimate the power of gin and denial. -- That was a lot of pressure on the twelve year old who was the kumari from Nepal. -- I totally smirked when Elizabeth asked Henry "Is it wrong that I found it kinda hot?" after he threatened to go Godfather on the guy who leaked photos of Stevie and Harrison to the media. Their interactions are just the best. -- Stevie [to the guy who leaked the photos of her]: I just wanted to get to know you as a person. So I wouldn't reduce you to one stupid thing that you did. See how that works? ... That was particularly mature of Stevie. I was rather impressed.

**(The Good Wife, 7x05 Payback) I took some deep pleasure in watching Crouse mess with that nasty debt collector guy, even though all characters involved were fictitious. I think this has something to do with dealing with pushy, rude, threatening telephone callers regularly at my job. -- Marissa: Mr Neftali is offering you twice as much as you're making now. Eli: How do you know what I make? Marissa: I'm a witch. -- Crouse is much more fun than Kalinda. She was always so dark and twisted. Crouse is unrepentant, incorrigible, a flirt, and witty. -- Alicia: Her $8000? Crouse: Yeah. Alicia: From the scammer? Crouse: Yeah. Alicia: How did you do that? Crouse: I persuaded him. Alicia: How? Crouse: By being presuasive. -- Eli stirring up trouble with Ruth. A scheming Eli is an amusing Eli. -- I may never get over Finn leaving the show but the addition of Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Jason Crouse is absolute brilliance.

**(Last Man Standing, 5x06 Halloween) Mike: Look at that: drugs and guns. I'm definitely a Libertarian. -- Kyle as Ed for Halloween. That was classic. -- Mandy: I don't want you to kiss me when you look like that. I would feel like I was cheating on your with future you. And I don't want future you to be into young chicks. Kyle-as-Ed: Yeah but you know it's just me. Mandy: Yeah, my ears do, but my eyes don't, and I hate it when they get confused. It's like when I see that movie with all the talking toys and I keep thinking I hear my dad's voice. -- It's funny how a Larabee addition to an episode almost guarantees I will love it but one Ryan sighting and I immediately sing a different tune.

**(Madam Secretary, 2x05 The Long Shot) Maybe Daisy isn't hiding a real life pregnancy after all, because she was wearing some rather tight, high-wasted pants. Which leaves me very confused why she's been getting all those upper body camera angles, standing behind large objects, and constantly holding props in front of her midsection. -- I cannot believe that Gorev was assassinated! I did NOT see that coming, at all. -- I am trying to decide who is behind Gorev's murder and the plane hackings:  Maria Ostrov seems too obvious. And even though the Ukraine president had his plane taken over, that could be a coverup to him pulling strings. -- This really is such a smart show. The relationships that are convincingly real. The creativity of the plot lines. The character depth. -- Why was Elizabeth wearing shoes in the house at midnight??

**(Grey's Anatomy, 12x01 Sledgehammer) Jackson: Why do you think everybody thinks they have a right to a front row seat to my marriage? Show's closed. Not selling tickets. -- Maggie's speech about being bullied as a child was wow. I just wanted to hug her. -- I can't remember if we've ever seen Bailey as intimidated by anyone the way she was around Dr McConnell. -- Stephanie [after Arizona forces her to say why no one wants to be Arizona's new roommate]: They say you have two legs and you only pretend that one is amputated...for the parking space. -- Mer: I'm sorry I said you had fleas. Maggie: Meredith! Amelia: What?? Mer: I don't...I don't know how to talk to you! You are a lot...sometimes. I don't totally like you. Amelia: Wow...ok. Mer: But I don't have to. Because you're family, I love you. -- ::head tilt:: Mer, teaching...I'm very intrigued! -- I have one question: Where were Mer's three kids while she and Amelia were tearing down that wall??

**(Blue Bloods, 6x06 Rush to Judgment) Let me sum up this episode succinctly: Ugh Potter. And Guerrero. And what's with Jamie being a whiny brat? I thought that was Nicky's role in the family?

**(Blindspot, 1x06 Cede Your Soul) Ok, so...there are layers upon layers of tattoos on Jane, and potentially this show could just go on...forever? -- Hmmm. I wonder who the Man with the Tree Tattoo is, and how does he fit into Jane's missing past, and why is she dreaming about him? -- I do feel bad for Jane. She is clearly feeling so lonely and isolated.

**(Scandal, 5x05 You Got Served) We're not getting nearly enough David this season -- I can't decide if Liv hiring Leo is a great idea or selling her soul to the Devil. -- Edison had every right to lay into Liv like he did, She was *awful* to him. -- Cy was a little demented, watching all the impeachment investigation fallout surrounded by snacks. -- Patty Snell [to Elizabeth North]: What, did someone give you a list of buzzwords when you took this job? Things to say so that you sound like you know how to help run a country? -- I'm not entirely convinced that Marcus is working *for* Liv and not against her. -- Olivia: I guess that means you have a type. Jake: So do you. Married men. -- I suddenly really like Fitz. It was the absolute disgust for bananas. -- That was quite a negotiation between Fitz and Cyrus. But I do have this question: if someone planted a camera in the Oval Office that caught Liv and Fitz. how is anywhere safe to have a confidential conversation?

**(Grey's Anatomy, 12x02 Walking Tall) I really love who Mer is right now. Her reactions are real but mature. And she is strong and witty and smart. -- LOL: That whole "lady place" conversation. -- I felt really bad for April-in-a-bubble, but Jackson is right. She has been focused entirely on what *she* wants and the ultimatums are being given by her, and really, she went to the opposite end of the unlikable spectrum from where she was when we first met her. -- Amelia: Have you ever had a friend who's, like, a really good friend, but you just wanna make out with him all the time? Callie: Oh yeah. Yeah, I used to do that for years. Amelia: And what happened? Callie: Sophia. -- When Jade was about to collapse on top of Jo, all I could think (and I feel mean just thinking it) was "timber!" -- BEARDED INTERN is setting up to be a character that I like. But DORKY INTERN? Is he crushing on Jo? Does he not know about Alex? -- I pretty much heart-ed Bailey telling Mer "I need a me" and making Mer the new Chief of General Surgery.

**(Blindspot, 1x07 Sent on Tour) Patterson: Everyone that's moved in has moved out in six months. ... How many have moved in with her?? -- This whole thing is *definitely* like some bizarre scavenger hunt. -- Mayfair: What's going on here? Patterson: How did you find me? Mayfair: I'm FBI, that's how. -- If Patterson's boyfriend is that smart that he can decipher these tattoo puzzles they all struggle with, why doesn't the FBI hire *him*??

**(Grey's Anatomy, 12x03 I Choose You) Amelia changing in the car OMG weird and awkward! -- It hurts my heart a little every time I see Mer's ferry boat scrub cap. What a great touch. -- Alex has become a great doctor and a good man. Telling those babies' parents that he chooses which survives, if it comes to that "and the rest you put on me." -- Alex: If one of your kids had to die, which one would you choose and why? Mer: Well, Bailey because he kept me up all night, but ask me again tomorrow and it might be Zola. -- I love the way Bailey encouraged Mer to value herself by lowballing her contract and waiting for Mer to speak up about her worth.

**(Grey's Anatomy, 12x04 Old Time Rock and Roll) LOL: Maggie's "No more talking!" when Amelia and Mer start talking about Maggie's one night stand. That would pretty much have been my reaction too. -- Maggie: He's an intern. Who does that?? Who screws the interns? What kind of person does that? Mer [laughing]: The father of my children. -- I'm having a real love-hate relationship with April right now. She's still sweet and kind...but then not, when it comes to Jackson. --  Who let me watch this episode at work with poor 90 year old Abe dying before he could propose to the second chance love of his life and then poor Gabby waking up from surgery to find out he had died?? ::sob:: -- My heart broke for Mer when she taught the interns how to break the death news to the family. ... Mer: When you walk into a room to tell someone that their loved one has died, it's more than just a list of bullet points you've memorized. Yours is the face they will remember for the rest of their life. They were fine before they met you. They picked up their children from school, they made dinner, and they got a call. The police showed up at their door and brought them here, with those children, to this room, so that *you* can give them the worst news of their entire life. You're changing this person's life forever. You are responsible for this moment. For the instant that person goes from wife to widow is you, all you, nobody but you. So this person isn't an inconvenience, they are not a box on a list to be checked off, you are a part of their life now. Your words, your face, so take that seriously and recognize the importance of your role, and respect the fact that that person's pain is the biggest thing in the room. -- ::insert wide-eyed emoji here:: Maggie and DeLuca. This is going to be...something, isn't it... -- OMG. Callie's new woman is Penny. *Penny* who killed Derek with bad decisions, Penny. OMG.


Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Food and Wine Fest 2015: Round Four

Time to redeem the previous round of Festing.

Right off the bat, going on a Sunday was a much more pleasant experience. It isn't something I can do most weekends, but it worked out this time around. The crowds were a good 50% lighter and the weather was warm but breezy. First stop...


Grilled Sweet and Spicy Bush Berry Shrimp with Pineapple, Pepper, Onion, and Snap Peas. Chateau Tanunda Grand Barossa Dry Riesling.

It's kind of funny to me, but the only time I ever seem to eat shrimp is at one of the EPCOT Fests. This dish wasn't bad, but I was expecting more pineapple and snap peas, considering they went out of their way to mention them in the dish description. There was only lonely piece of pineapple and no snap peas whatsoever. The sauce was a slightly spicy tomato broth with the diced veggies in it, and curiously, there were equal amounts of tomato, pepper, and onion, despite tomatoes getting no billing at all. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't "as advertised" either, so that was a bit disappointing, I guess. But let's talk about that Riesling before we zoom off to another country. Because it does indeed say *dry*. Anyone who's ever had a Rielsing likely thinks immediately of a sweet wine. Some are sweeter than others, but always with the fruity sweetness, right? This was definitely a Riesling, but it had so many citrus flavors to it, that it just couldn't be considered sweet at all. It had a refreshing tartness to it that I really enjoyed and that went well with the shrimp. So while it wasn't the driest wine I've ever sipped, it was, by *far*, the driest Riesling.

Onward to...


Beijing Roasted Duck in a Steamed Bun with Hoisin Sauce.

This is, by far, one of the dishes I've liked best this year. I like that duck is something a bit different from all the other meat options around the Global Marketplaces. It's tender and flavorful, especially with that hoisin sauce. The green onions add a crisp freshness to the meat, and the steamed bun is like eating a cloud. A+ on this one, Food and Wine Fest.

It gets crowded, walking through the mob of people gathered around all the Global Marketplaces located on the front side of the lagoon (they're packed closer together there than anywhere else and some of the walkways get easily congested), so I walked the long way around World Showcase to get to...



Even though I get it every single year, I can never resist getting it again. All those flaky layers of pastry filled with spinach and feta cheese. It's always well done and I never regret getting it. It's a classic. A wonderfully delicious classic.

Moving right along (across the walkway) to...


Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter Sauce.

Here's another dish I've gotten for years now. Usually, it's just a vessel for getting that amazing truffle butter sauce into my mouth. This year, though, I was impressed with the actual meat too. In the past, the cut has been thinner. This year, I don't know if they're cutting the meat thicker, or if I just got lucky with and end piece that was thicker, but that thickness lent itself to being cooked a solid medium-rare (warm pink center, which is my personal preference) rather than the typical medium to medium-well. It was so tender, so juicy, so full of flavor, and topped with that truffle butter sauce that makes me want to lick that paper dish after I've finished eating? ::whimper:: I love when a Fest staple surprises me by being extra tasty.

And now for some dessert in...


France got a new Global Marketplace! I love its new cafe look and welcoming red color.

Creme Brulee Vanille Chocolat.

Just look at that beautiful crust of caramelized sugar!

I found the consistency a bit unexpected. Instead of being the thicker texture of custard to which I am accustomed, this was more like a pudding -- more creamy than jiggly. ::shrugs:: I'm perfectly ok with some chocolate and vanilla pudding with that golden sugar crunch!

Other than my first dish not living up to expectations, this was a very satisfying spin around the world. And light years better than the one before, considering I didn't feel like garbage (always a plus). I was already planning my next go round as I waddled through the parking lot to my car.


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