Friday, February 29, 2008

Old Photo Friday: 70's Dodger Girl

In honor of Joe Torre's first win (spring training game) as the Dodger's new skipper, I found this old photo from the 70's.

Date: 1978 (I look to be 8 or 9 years old)
Location: "E" Street, Springfield, OR
Who: Stacy Dare Brady (#1 Dodger Fan)
What: Not sure where I got the hat? My Mom lived in LA for awhile and perhaps I brought it home from my summer trip to LA in the late 70's.



Thursday, February 28, 2008

Recipe Of The Week: Flank Steak


Sandra and I have been grilling Flank Steak about once a week. It’s one of the staples on the Weight Watchers Plan and it’s got great flavor!

I came across the interesting recipe. Evidently, coffee has a remarkable affinity with beef.

Makes 4 servings

3 tablespoons strong brewed coffee

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon brown sugar

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns, crushed

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pound flank steak, trimmed of fat

1. Whisk coffee, vinegar, oil, sugar, garlic, peppercorns and salt in a Ziploc bag. Add steak and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 8 hours.

2. Heat grill to high and remove steak from marinade (discard marinade). Lightly oil grill (I use Pam spray). Place steak on grill and cook for 5 to 6 minutes per side for medium-rare.

3. Transfer steak to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes (tent with foil). Slice thinly across the grain and serve.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


My daffodils are up and days away from opening! Spring is in the air in the northwest.



Monday, February 25, 2008

Home Show Recap

Brian, Sandra and I took in the Portland Home and Garden Show on Saturday for our weekend adventure! We rode Interstate Max up to the Expo Center and spent about 3 hours walking through the entire exhibit.
The best part of the day was being able to take in some rare February sunshine!

We really enjoyed getting lots of great ideas for the home and garden. Brian especially loved this outdoor setting (although the wine is fake).

Sandra and I got a kick out of our new friend, Charles Suniga who entertained the crowd with his wonderfully inspiring piano ballads.

We ended the day at the Goose Hollow Inn for a Ploughman's Lunch (and a bit of spirit)!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Old Photo Friday: G'Day Mate

It dawned on me today as I worked on my passport renewal application that Sandra came to Australia for a visit in February 1995 (13 years ago). A perfect old photo Friday.

Date: February 1995
Location: Circular Quay (pronounced "key")
Who: Sandra and Stacy
What: Enjoying Sydney Harbor


Restaurant Review: Toro Bravo!

Bravo! Spanish "tapas" at Portland's best last night with friends Brian and Maddie as we checked out the newest culinary extravagance, NE Portland's Toro Bravo.

Despite a 90 minute wait at 6:30 on a Thursday night (they do not take reservations) our meal was one of the best I have had at a PDX restaurant in a long time (and yes....we have not been out for a while).

The restaurant is small, intimate and simple with shared tables (which we enjoyed...nice to find out what your neighbor just ordered). Earthy decor with a boisterous feel aided by hip music pulsating in the background.

I found the menu to be inventive and seemed to center around seasonal, local produce. Tapas or “small plates” is the best way to experience more of the menu. We each ordered 2-3 plates and passed them around the table.

This is what we ate:
Toasted Almonds in Sea Salt
Sherry Chicken Live Mousse*
Spicy Octopus & Calamari Stew
Sauteed Hedge Hog Mushrooms on Griddled Bread
Baked Polenta with Roast Beef, Peppers and Onions
Oxtail Croquettes with Spice roasted chili mayo
Griddle Shrimp with Chilies*
Smoked Pork on grilled bread with celery root salad*
Whole Petrale Sole with capers, olives, lemon & Roasted Garlic
Meatballs with tomato-almond sauce and heirloom carrots
House Smoked Coppa Steak with Olive Oil Poached Potatoes
Dessert: Crepes with Lemon curd and Almond Ice Cream with a shot of espresso

Note: The items I put an asterisk next to were my favs!

The food comes at you much so that you become lost in a culinary maze. The fusion of taste is overwhelming so pace yourself. My advice, go back again soon!



Thursday, February 21, 2008

Recipe of the Week: Coconut Milk Crab Cakes with Lime Zest

I made crab cakes for Valentine’s Day last week and I forgot how much I enjoy a good crab cake. There are hundreds of recipes, in fact NW “foodie” and Delaware native, Tom Douglas has a cookbook specifically for various crab cakes.


Coconut Milk Crab Cakes with Lime Zest
From "I Love Crab Cakes! 50 Recipes for an American Classic" by Tom Douglas with Shelley Lance

Makes 8 crab cakes


- 1 can (13.5 ounces) unsweetened coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon grated lime zest
- 1 pound crabmeat, drained, picked clean of shell and lightly squeezed if wet
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced, green and white parts
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 cups panko crumbs, divided
- 2 large egg whites
- Peanut or canola oil for frying
- Sweet chili sauce (see note)
- 4 lime wedges


1. Combine coconut milk and lime zest in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Continue to simmer until the milk is reduced by about one-third, adjusting the heat as necessary. (You should have about ¾ cup reduced coconut milk.) Transfer to a large bowl and refrigerate until cold.
2. When coconut milk is cold, add crab, green onions, cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper, stirring to combine. Stir in 1 cup panko. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip egg whites to soft peaks. Using a rubber spatula, fold whites into crab mixture gently but thoroughly.
3. Divide mixture into 8 portions, then flatten into patties. Pour remaining 2 cups panko into a shallow container. Dredge patties in the panko. If time permits, chill the cakes 30 minutes or more.
4. When ready to fry the cakes, place 2 large nonstick skillets over medium-high heat, and pour in enough oil to coat bottoms of the pans about 1/8-inch deep. When oil is hot, shake off excess panko from the patties, add 4 to each pan, and reduce heat to medium. Fry 3-4 minutes per side, turning once with a spatula, or until golden brown and heated through. Remove crab cakes from pans and drain on paper towels.
5. Transfer crab cakes to plates, serving 2 to each person, accompanied by ramekins of sweet chili sauce and lime wedges.

Note: Sweet chili sauce is a thin, orange-red sauce made from pounded chilies, sugar, salt, oil and vinegar. There are many brands from several Asian countries, but Tom Douglas uses the Mae Ploy brand from Thailand.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Sunny Sunday at the Lake

Brian and I had a wonderful Sunday at Lake Morton visiting with Jenny, Brent and family. It was such a beautiful day and a perfect way to wind up our weekend.

Little Carter is 9 1/2 months and as cute as a button.

We snuck down to the dock while he was sleeping and spent sometime catching up with Jenny and soaking up some rays.

It was our first opportunity to be in the sun in a good 4+ months and gave Brian and I both "spring fever".



Saturday, February 16, 2008

Recipe Of The Week: Nothing Sweeter Than a Repeater

Brian made Vegetarian Sheppard's Pie last weekend and it was so fabulous that I felt it worthy of a repeat!


Friday, February 15, 2008

Old Photo Friday: 60's Snow Day

Date: Mid 1960’s (Brian looks to be about 7)
Location: 109 Tamara Circle (surrounding neighborhood)
Who: The Lee Boys (L-R – Ken, Brian and Kerry)
What: A snow day! The three of them hanging out on their sleds.



Pop's Day Out

My Pop and an old Army buddy of his hooked up after 40+ years this past month. Craig is an 18 wheel long-haul truck driver from the upper mid-west who contacted my Pop after searching for him on the internet.

This week, Craig came back into town and took my Pop on an adventure! They had breakfast in Coburg, OR and picked up a load of lumber out in Jasper, OR.

Pop said the cab of the truck had all sorts of “bells and whistles”. He had a great time!



Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day!

Clouds came floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storms, but to add color to my sunset sky. - Rabindranath Tagore
Happy Valentine's Day to those I love!

Sunset Picture taken at Rebecca Lane, Summer 2007



Wednesday, February 13, 2008

My Favorite Teacher

Brian had some photos taken this week of him teaching the Series 7 in Renton. They are putting together a mailing along with his bio and a few pictures to get the word out that the Best Securities Teacher in America is back!

Unfortunatley, these photos didn't come out very good so we are going to try again, but at least it will give you an idea of the master at work!



Beagle wins Westminster dog show!

Barking up a storm, Uno lived up to his name Tuesday by becoming the first beagle to win best in show at the Westminster Kennel Club.

I couldn't quite make it until 11:00PM last night when Uno was crowned, but I taped it and watched it this morning before I got out of bed!

The nation’s new top dog was clearly the crowd favorite at Madison Square Garden. He wagged his tail and jumped on his handler, clearly excited about winning the prize!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Gone To The Dogs!

The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show starts tonight! It’s a two-day show that takes place at Madison Square Garden every year. Dog owners from around the world come to show their dogs and it is considered by many to be America's most prestigious dog show.

Last year’s winner was an English Springer Spaniel named Champion Felicity's Diamond Jim (aka:"James" ).

Brian and I would LOVE to have a dog. How about one of these......


MATILDA ("Mattie")


Click on the link to meet Oscar up close and personal!!


Friday, February 8, 2008

Old Photo Friday: March Madness - A History Lesson

Date: Early April 2001
Location: Rebecca Lane
Who: Stacy (AKA Miss Picker)
What: Collecting my winnings after Duke beats Arizona to win the NCAA Basketball Championship

There has been a lot of “trash” talking recently regarding March Madness, which is just around the corner. I think the big Duke/NC showdown on Wednesday night got me to thinking about the last time I won it all (2001 when Duke beat Arizona 82-72 and let’s not forget back to back in 1991 and 1992).



Thursday, February 7, 2008

Recipe of the Week: Salmon with Two Salsas

Sandra and I eat a lot of salmon! I guess that living in the Pacific Northwest makes us kinda spoiled. The benefits of fish in our diet is amazing. Did you know?

Salmon is low in calories and saturated fat, yet high in protein, and a unique type of health-promoting fat, the omega-3 essential fatty acids. As their name implies, essential fatty acids are essential for human health but because they cannot be made by the body, they must be obtained from foods. Fish contain a type of essential fatty acid called the omega-3 fatty acids. Wild-caught cold water fish, like salmon, are higher in omega-3 fatty acids than warm water fish. In addition to being an excellent source of omega-3s, salmon are an excellent source of selenium, a very good source of protein, niacin and vitamin B12, and a good source of phosphorous, magnesium and vitamin B6.

This recipe is wonderful all year round! If you can’t find a mango (or they are a little expensive this time of year, no worries) I’ve attached an alternate salsa that will knock your socks off!


The following is an excerpt from the book "Eat Right for Your Metabolism" by Felicia Drury Kliment.


4 6-ounce portions salmon filet

Mango Cilantro Salsa:

1 ripe mango, peeled and ½-inch diced

¼ cup chopped scallion, green part only

¼ cup diced red bell pepper

1 tablespoon finely diced fresh jalapeno

1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

1 small clove garlic, minced

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice

¼ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 400F and bake salmon on a foil-lined cookie sheet for 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the salmon.

For the Mango Cilantro Salsa

Lightly toss all ingredients in bowl. Chill in refrigerator for at least 1 hour for flavors to meld.

Serve salsa as an accompaniment to salmon. Mango Cilantro Salsa also goes nicely with grilled meat or chicken.
Yield: 4 servings

*Avocado and Black Bean Salsa
I make several variations of this salsa several times a year. It’s great with flank steak, chicken and fish – a wonderful accompaniment to a BBQ or a way to spice us the Winter months.
1 can (15-ounce) black beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1 bunch green onions, sliced

1/4 cup chopped red onion

1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

1 1/2 cups frozen corn or 1 can (11-ounce) corn, drained

1 avocado, diced

1/3 cup chopped red onion

2 tablespoons lime juice 1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground chili powder

1 tablespoon olive oil

salt and pepper

1. In a large bowl, combine black beans, tomatoes, green onions, red onion, garlic, corn, and avocado. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour to meld flavours.

Makes About 6 Cups

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Super Bowl Sunday

Happy Super Bowl Sunday. The Rebecca Lane ladies are going with Cousin, Tom and the Patriots to be "perfect". I hope the game is close and the commercials are funny. It's nice to be home with a fire on a relaxing Sunday.

The Taco Soup is on! Here is this year's football cake. The top laces are a bit weird, but it came out really good.


Saturday, February 2, 2008

Chef Brian

Brian cooked a Giada DeLaurentiis recipe last night for the ladies of Rebecca Lane.

Dinner was fantastic. We all really enjoyed the peppers and I think Brian had a great time in the kitchen.

Orzo Stuffed Peppers
Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis
See this recipe on air Sunday Feb. 03 at 7:30 AM ET/PT.

1 (28-ounce) can Italian tomatoes

2 zucchini, grated

1/2 cup chopped fresh mint leaves

1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano, plus more for sprinkling

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

4 cups chicken broth

1 1/2 cups orzo (rice-shaped pasta)

6 sweet bell peppers (red or yellow)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Pour the tomatoes into a large bowl and break apart using a pair of kitchen shears or your finger tips. Add the zucchini, mint, cheese, olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.

Meanwhile, bring the chicken broth to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add the orzo and cook for 4 minutes. The orzo should be only partially cooked. Use a fine mesh sieve to transfer the orzo to the large bowl with the other vegetables. Stir the orzo into the vegetable mix to combine.

Transfer the warm chicken broth to a 3-quart baking dish. Slice the tops off the peppers and remove all ribs and seeds. Cut a very thin slice from the base to help the peppers stand up.

Place the peppers in the baking dish with the warm chicken broth. Spoon the orzo mixture into the peppers. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil, sprinkle the top of each pepper with cheese and continue baking until the cheese is golden, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, carefully transfer the orzo stuffed pepper to a serving plate.

Thanks, Baby! We really enjoyed them



Friday, February 1, 2008

National Wear Red Day

This is a day when Americans nationwide will wear red to show their support for women's heart disease awareness. This observance promotes the Red Dress symbol and provides an opportunity for everyone to unite in this life-saving awareness movement by showing off a favorite red dress, shirt, or tie, or Red Dress Pin.
What is Heart Disease?
Coronary heart disease is the main form of heart disease. It is a disorder of the blood vessels of the heart that can lead to heart attack. A heart attack happens when an artery becomes blocked, preventing oxygen and nutrients from getting to the heart. Often referred to simply as heart disease, it is one of several cardiovascular diseases, which are diseases of the heart and blood vessel system. Other cardiovascular diseases include stroke, high blood pressure, angina (chest pain), and rheumatic heart disease.
Tips for Heart Health
· Don't smoke, and if you do, quit. Women who smoke are two to six times more likely to suffer a heart attack than non-smoking women. Smoking also boosts the risk of stroke and cancer.
· Aim for a healthy weight. It's important for a long, vigorous life. Overweight and obesity cause many preventable deaths.
· Get moving. Make a commitment to be more physically active. Aim for 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity on most, preferably all, days of the week.
· Eat for heart health. Choose a diet low in saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol, and moderate in total fat.
· Know your numbers. Ask your doctor to check your blood pressure, cholesterol (total, HDL, LDL, triglycerides), and blood glucose. Work with your doctor to improve any numbers that are not normal.

Today I wore RED for Heart Disease!

Old Photo Friday: Brian and Al

Date: Early 90’s
Location: Brian’s Aunt Faye’s home
Who: Brian and his Dad, Allen
What: Check out that Stache! Brian, you sure have improved with age. I love the look of adornment from his father.

Priceless photo!