Happy Thanksgiving!

>> Friday, November 23, 2007

Joe and I took a mini vacation out to Niagara Falls for our Thanksgiving Holiday. Only a 3 and a half hour drive from Cleveland, 'twas a great get away from the work and school grind.

Hope everyone had a great holiday!



>> Wednesday, October 3, 2007

One of Joe's work buddies scored tickets to this past weekend's 80's glory, Genesis concert, but decided stay true to his Buckeyes and go to the game rather than the show; he graciously passed the tickets to Joe and I. Hearing them play took Joe and I back to our youngin' years. I remember my dad cranking ol' Phil on our family boom-box while my brother and I would dance around the apartment in spaghetti, kool-aide, and paint ridden hand-me-downs.

We got to sit in Quicken's very own suite. Free food and beverages, comfy seats and couches, and plenty of leg room. It was indeed a plush and awesome way to spend a Saturday night.

The dude labeled in the picture above was air-drumming.....the entire concert.

Sadly, everyone's all-time hit didn't make an appearance...


Market Delights

>> Friday, September 28, 2007

Ahhh, the farmer's market. Probably one of my favorite places to go on the weekends. Before fall begins to settle in and certain fruits begin to disappear from the stands, Joe and I decided to take advantage of the abundance of figs. We bought 2 baskets of the plump goodies along with a healthy heaping of different veggies from our favorite farmer.

With a fig newton fiend living amongst me, I decided what better than to make homemade newtons. I found a recipe, which I totally forgot to bookmark, that consisted of a pastry simply consisting of butter, cream cheese, flour, salt, and a little milk. And the fig concoction, just chopped figs, a little sugar and a the juice from half a lemon. That's it. A little work, and you get the best tasting fig newtons ever.

Totally worth the time.

For dinner a couple of days later, we fancied up a farmer's market salad creation, inspired by a salad we ate at the botanical gardens on my birthday. Gently cooked sirloin, slices of sweet plum, crushed walnuts, and blue cheese, on top of a bed of lively mixed greens. Drizzle a little orange ginger dressing, and you've gone to salad heaven.



>> Friday, September 21, 2007

We had our first orchestra concert this past Wednesday. It. Was. Awesome. We played Rossini's Barber of Seville, Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2, and Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra in Severance Hall, home to the Cleveland Orchestra. Completed in 1931, Severance Hall boasts flares of Art Deco, French Noveau, Egyptian Revival and Modernism. The ornate pattern found all across the ceiling of the concert hall is in honor of Mrs. Severance, who passed away just weeks after Mr. Severance's announcement of his $1 million pledge towards the building of the hall. The cream colored swirls and curves are fancied after the lace found on Mrs. Severence's wedding gown.

So here are some snaps I took while at Severence Hall for our Tuesday evening dress rehearsal. I even took a short video. Enjoy!


24 Years Later

>> Monday, September 10, 2007

When my mom turned 24, I was nearly a year old already and my younger brother Kris was in the making. Weird to think about. Here I am; 24, still in school, blissfully married, with lots of life ahead. I'm eager to win a job, settle down a bit and enjoy a life without tests, homework and dang piano exams. But, at the same time, I'm enjoying the process of continually learning and soaking up information I thought I had down...

I had quite an excellent Birthday. It was a day full of good food, (I....love....food....) and a lengthy and well spent day at the Cleveland Botanical Gardens.

Woke up slow, to the smell of bacon and eggs. :-)
Then headed out for some fresh air.

Then, while I ran off to quintet rehearsal Joe worked his magic in the kitchen.
Dinner, was, BON!

Mashed fennel and red potatoes.
Salmon stuffed with lemon, topped with cool cucumber, and drizzled with a green sauce.
Best Birthday cake....ever. Chocolate brownie base, topped with a dark chocolate whipped mouse/tort, dusted with a healthy helping of cocoa powder. *I'm having more tonight...

And thus, on a full belly and a nature inspired day; I went to bed, another year older.


Put me in Coach!

>> Thursday, September 6, 2007

Being at CIM for 10 hours a day can make one become a little insane. So, in order to balance things out I made the plunge and joined Cleveland's women's ice hockey team. It's another commitment to the already heavy duty schedule I somehow get through, but I think it'll be worth it and will prove to make me happier and healthier.

We had our first practice last night, and after not having put on a pair of skates and a helmet in 5 years....I must say I picked it back up rather quickly. Although I will admit, I took a Richter scale worthy fall during one of the drills. My fanny's right hemisphere is a little on the sore side today.

Once games start up in October, perhaps I can get Joe to get behind the lens and capture some action shots. Should be fun.

Plethora of hockey gear in the left corner after last night's practice. If you don't let that stuff air out....it could prove to be deadly the next time you open up your bag in the locker room.


Stompin' Grounds

>> Sunday, September 2, 2007

First week down.

I'm thoroughly enjoying my time here at CIM. The atmosphere is very driven and very intense. The practice rooms are packed........all......day. Good luck finding one after 8:00am.

I'm taking theory, piano, orchestra, chamber music, and ear training. Oh, by the way, CIM uses fixed-'do'....try singing a major scale starting on 'fa' after years of only starting on 'do'. Eeeesh.

The people here are great. We're all nerds, and we all know it. We geek out over Shotakovich and practice our instruments until we hurt.

A part of my work study assignment is to play in Lab Orchestra, which is an orchestra put together for the benefit of the Masters and Doctoral Conducting majors. This past week we read through Beethoven's First Symphony without missing a beat. It, was, fantastic. And to think everyone was simply sight reading.

Our first orchestra concert is coming up in a short two weeks. We're hashing out a Rossini Overture, Rachmaninoff's Second Piano Concerto, and Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra in Severance Hall, home of the Cleveland Orchestra. Should be thweet.

Here are a few pics from around the CIM campus. It's a small school, incubating roughly 370 students all eager to learn, practice, and win a job. The main building was built in 1961 and thanks to over $40 million in donations, has expanded with a new classroom, office and practice wing on the eastern side and a new recital hall on the western side that will open this November. So, the school is still in the midst of construction, and is no doubt a little annoying when sitting in class and the dictation exam is a combination of piano melodies and jack hammers...

Turquoise brick that envelops the outside of the of the concert hall. Remnants of the 60's...
You must kneel to get a sip of H2O at CIM.


Where's My Snack Pack?

>> Thursday, August 30, 2007

Started CIM on Monday. Been crazy busy. But lovin' it immensely. Will post pics soon!


Fleece Socks, Tomato Basil Soup, and Grilled Cheese

>> Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Joe and I woke up nice and toasty under the blankets Saturday and Sunday morning amidst a room lingering around 55 degrees. For three days in a row, our high temps didn't break 70 and the evenings cooled down to a chill 53. With windows wide open, we welcomed the cool crisp temps and enjoyed a weekend breaking out sweatpants, long sleeved shirts.....and warm foods.

Joe rolled up his sleeves and was the mastermind behind the homemade tomato basil soup, sprinkled with romano, while I buttered and fried up the grilled cheese. Even a loaf of Irish Bread was made....but we ate it....honey-butter and all.....before I could snap a pic.


Sooooo, grood!

>> Thursday, August 16, 2007

Here's a pic I took sometime last week of the green onion bulbs I planted back in July. These things are probably the easiest things to take care of. No joke. Just water whenever the soil looks or feels dry....that's it. And they grow like weeds.

I've used the onions a couple of times now; in some miso soup, pita wraps, salads....all bueno.

Joe and I had homemade burritos the other night....we're going through Pepe Delgato's withdrawal....and I bought an avocado to dice up and toss into the creation. I read somewhere a while ago, that you can plant an avocado pit, and it'll grow and make a lovely indoor plant, but won't of course, bear any fruit. The pit is in a pot in the windowsill....waitin' for some germination.


Free Fun

>> Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The area we live in, the Cedar/Fairmount District, had their annual summer art/food/fun festival on Sunday. Good times for all. Free pony rides, tasty treats from local vendors, artists showing their impressive creations, and a very confident duo of men singing Beatles tunes. There was even a 'pretty puppy parade' earlier in the day, would have made for some nice pics.

"Mad Greek" shelling out some tasties.
Fresh, kettle-cooked popcorn."Rocket Car" rides.


Bela Anton Leos......Fleck

>> Monday, August 13, 2007

His parents named him after Bela Bartok, Antonin Dvorak, and Leos Janacek. Together with Victor Wooten, Jeff Coffin, and Victor's older brother "Future Man", Saturday night's concert was definitely a highlight amongst all concerts. A few pics from the evening at Cain Park's Evans Amphitheater.


Our Quarters

>> Saturday, August 11, 2007

I've finally gotten around to taking some snaps of our comfy apartment. The padres are much appreciative I know. So, without further ado....

This is the living area, viewed as if you just entered the front door entrance. *The fireplace is fake...Sad, yes.

Here resides the dining/work space/place for unpacked things we couldn't find a place for, room.

Our bowling alley/slip n' slide worthy hallway.


Guest/trumpet infestation room

Joe and I's room. It was laundry day, hence the lack of sheets or blanket on the bed.

All in all, a great apartment. Joe and I love our neighbors, our neighborhood and who would have imagined...even our landlord, a short and mouse-like Jewish man full of advice for anything you may be questioning.

Joe and I are hittin' up a Bela Fleck concert tonight at the local outdoor amphitheater, should be very choice. "No cameras allowed" says the website for tonight's event....we'll see about that.