Friday Stuff n’ Things: Road Trip Edition

A highway, somewhere in the middle of Ohio.

You have to love the bright blue sky after I began my last Friday Stuff n’ Things post with a very stormy sky! This week my Chief Culinary Consultant and I packed up and took off for a couple of days to western Ohio. We hit up the National Air Force Museum and then took in a day and a half of tennis at the Western & Southern Open. It was a great trip; I have some photos to share with you below, as well as some other tidbits about what I’ve been up to and random life outside of the kitchen.

Note to self: Homemade trail mix, honey-wheat pretzels, bananas, peaches, water and Diet Coke are great road trip essentials, but next time, don’t forget the chocolate chip cookies. They’re key when it’s after 10pm, you’re still in the car, and you’re craving something sweet!

1. Ohio Road Trip, Part I: National Museum of the United States Air Force. My Chief Culinary Consultant and I have been talking about taking a mini road trip to see this museum for a couple of years now. We finally decided to make the 4+ hour drive west to Dayton and check it out. I’m not really into planes or war history, but I found the museum to be fascinating. We spent the bulk of our time in the WWII section of the museum, where a lot of the planes were adorned with artwork like this:

Along with all of the planes they had on display, there were also artifacts and memorabilia from the war. Below are wood carvings that were made by prisoners of war. The pictures don’t even come close to doing them justice; the detail is just incredible.

There were also quite a number of propaganda and recruitment posters on display (below left). One of my favorite pieces in the museum was a large stained glass painting (below right), whose original location was in the Wheelus Air Force Base chapel. There were so many amazing things to look at and read, you could easily spend two whole days going through the entire museum.

2. Ohio Road Trip, Part II: Western & Southern Open. We decided to combine our trip to the Air Force Museum with some tennis, since there was a tournament being held just outside of Cincinnati, less than an hour from the museum. We lucked out and got to see Roger Federer play a night match, and then an afternoon match the next day, both from great seats. We also saw Na Li, Andy Murray and a few others as we bounced around some side courts. We’ve gone to the Sony-Ericsson Open in Miami the last two years and always have fun checking out these tournaments. Such a great little midweek getaway!

This girl, she was not having a good night. I feel her pain… I usually have the same reaction when something catastrophic happens in the kitchen.

Such a cordial game… niceties all around.

P.S. I recently got a 70-300mm lens and broke it in at the tennis tournament. Absolutely in LOVE with it. I was able to capture some really amazing shots. If you’re looking for a telephoto zoom lens, I highly recommend it!

3. Fall! Nail polish! Fall! I was at the grocery store last week and while walking past the cosmetics section on my way to the checkout, I spied a display of Essie’s new fall colors. I love when the colors come out for the new season, so exciting! I adore all of these, although I’m not sure that I can see myself wearing the green. I guarantee that I buy at least 3 within a week. Write it down.

4. I tried to make mozzarella cheese this week. Remember a couple of weeks ago when I told you I was going to attempt canning and cheese-making? Well, the canning was a success. The mozzarella went about 69% according to plan. In my grade school, that was failing. Which is to say, the cheese was not a success. It came close, but close only counts in horse shoes and hand grenades, right? I’ll be working on take two in the next few days. Fingers crossed!

5. HUGS! Did you drink these little fruit barrels as a kid? We had them occasionally, but I probably haven’t touched one in well over 20 years. A few weeks ago at the grocery store, my Chief Culinary Consultant spotted a display of them and bought a box on a whim. It was still a week after that before I grabbed one, but after my first sip I remembered why they were so good when we were kids. So refreshing! Definitely a blast from the past.

6. Movies! The last time we talked movies, I had just gone to see Ted. Since then, I finally got to the theater to see The Dark Knight in IMAX, which was awesome. Great, great movie, and I of course loved that parts of the movie were filmed in Pittsburgh. It was so much fun to see some of the downtown streets during chase scenes. I think The Campaign and The Bourne Legacy are next up on the list of movies to catch at the theater. Have you seen either?

7. A pretzel bread revolution! A few weeks ago Jessica mentioned pretzels baguettes in one of her posts. I asked her where she found them and she replied with her local Giant Eagle. I cried a little when I found out that my local Giant Eagle didn’t carry it. However, after a trip to Whole Foods and a Giant Eagle Market District, I found pretzel buns, pretzel rolls, pretzel sticks, pretzel baguettes, pretty much… pretzel everything! My taste buds have been blown away and I’m already plotting my next trip to buy more.

8. Sunny day… sweepin’ the clouds away… Einstein has been finding that sunny sweet spot for the last week or so and bathing himself in the afternoon warmth. Dogs have great lives, don’t they?

9. Speaking of dogs… I saw this on Facebook and if you have a pet, I guarantee you can relate!

10. TGIF! Weeeeeeeee! Kick back and have a great weekend!



31 Responses to “Friday Stuff n’ Things: Road Trip Edition”

  1. Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes on August 17, 2012 at 2:34 am REPLY

    Ahhh those juice barrels! I used to always cut my lips on the leftover foil pieces haha. Love all those nail polish colors. I see a lot of people talking about Essie lately. Have a great weekend!

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:50 pm

      Hi Ashley, I got hooked on Essie last year. I had always worn OPI but it was chipping really easily and just happened to pick up a bottle of Essie while at Target one day. I fell in love with it and now that’s all I buy! I highly recommend if you’re looking to try a new nail polish!

      Reply

  2. Tanya on August 17, 2012 at 7:05 am REPLY

    Hey hey! You guys were in my neck of the woods!! Isn’t Ohio the most exciting place??? Ok, just a little sarcasm, but you did see pretty cool places! Hope you had fun!

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:48 pm

      Yay! Haha, it’s not so bad! We did have a great time, might do it again next year, and instead of the museum hit up the Columbus Zoo!

      Reply

  3. Claire @ Live and Love to Eat on August 17, 2012 at 8:15 am REPLY

    Love the pig photo!

    Reply

  4. Nomi on August 17, 2012 at 8:21 am REPLY

    I’m pretty sure that the kosher parve bakery at the Squirrel Hill Giant Eagle has pretzel bread. Don’t know where you live in Pittsburgh, but it might be closer for you.

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:48 pm

      Oooh I’m going to have to check it out! Squirrel Hill is about 20-30 minutes from me.

      Reply

  5. Mariel W on August 17, 2012 at 9:09 am REPLY

    We went to the National Airforce Museum this summer too and loved it. I’m also very excited to see about the pretzel bread! My mother in law buys pretzel bagels, I miss them so much!

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:47 pm

      Oh how fun! And, O.M.G. pretzel bagels?! That sounds so crazy good! I have to find them, and if I can’t find them, I must make them!

      Reply

  6. Michele on August 17, 2012 at 9:23 am REPLY

    Ah, I had no idea you were at the CIncinnati tournament! If you happened to see a gaggle of girls who were completely obnoxious the whole time, that was my tennis team ahahah. I wish I got to see you considering you were pretty much my first food blog crush….. <3 Glad you had such a great mid-week vacation (;

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:47 pm

      I saw no such gaggle, but if you ever spot me, definitely say hello! :)

      Reply

  7. Jennifer on August 17, 2012 at 10:47 am REPLY

    Love the pictures! Thanks for sharing :)

    Reply

  8. Danielle on August 17, 2012 at 11:03 am REPLY

    Love the blog! Thanks for sharing! I have tried many of your recipies and loved them all. When I look for something new now, I automatically go to your page.

    Reply

  9. Megan on August 17, 2012 at 11:03 am REPLY

    I LOVE pretzel bread/buns! So good with some turkey, colby cheese, romaine…..Oh, I’m making myself hungry!
    And, yes, my husband and I went to see the Bourne Legacy last weekend – very good movie. I think it is one of the better ‘Bourne’ movies – really like Jeremy Renner – good actor!

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:46 pm

      Okay, the turkey sandwich sounds delicious! I’ve just been eating them plain, from the bag. Should I be hanging my head in shame? ;-) Great to hear you enjoyed the Bourne Legacy; can’t wait to see it!

      Reply

  10. Laura Dembowski on August 17, 2012 at 11:34 am REPLY

    How cool that you went to that tennis tournament. I had no idea it even existed until watching the news this morning. And you could definitely rock green nail polish. I have pretty much every color possible and love them all. There’s something about polish that makes it easy to take a risk when you otherwise wouldn’t. Then again, I’m totally nail polish obsessed :)

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:46 pm

      Hi Laura, Thanks for the encouragement regarding green nail polish. Maybe I’ll give it a try after all :)

      Reply

  11. Katie @ Blonde Ambition on August 17, 2012 at 3:12 pm REPLY

    Hahaha! Those last two photos totally just made my day :) Sounds like a fun trip!

    Reply

  12. Caroline Luisi on August 17, 2012 at 4:15 pm REPLY

    I used to live right across from the AF Museum when my dad was stationed at Wright-Patterson. I’ve been there tons of times and totally believe it’s haunted. If you didn’t hear any stories while on your visit you have to do some searching online. Lots of interesting stories.

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:45 pm

      Hi Caroline! I hope you, Kris and the girls are doing well! I hadn’t seen anything about the museum being haunted before we left, but I’m definitely heading to Google, I’m interested! I could definitely see that being a place with “activity”. Tell Kris I said hello!

      Reply

  13. CJ at Food Stories on August 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm REPLY

    Looks like you guys had a great time … Happy Friday :-)

    Reply

  14. Rachel @ I'm Loving Today on August 17, 2012 at 5:26 pm REPLY

    I was so excited to read this post! Originally hailing from the Dayton-area myself, I think I went to the Air Force Museum probably every year of my elementary-school days (I know it well). I also went to that same tennis tournament every year in high school with my tennis team. I looked forward to that trip every year, and was so excited to get the chance to see Pete Sampras, Federer and Andy Roddick on the center court. I’m glad you had a good trip to Ohio! :)

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:43 pm

      Oh how fun!! We had a great time there, will probably go back again!

      Reply

  15. Elisabeth on August 17, 2012 at 9:21 pm REPLY

    The photos taken at the tennis match are amazing! Great job!
    I showed the dogs sleeping to my sick daughter and she laughed! That’s a sound I haven’t heard for some time! Many Thanks!
    When she’s better, we’re going to make the s’mores ice cream. Can’t wait!

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:42 pm

      Thanks Elisabeth! I hope your daughter feels better soon! The s’mores ice cream might do the trick :)

      Reply

  16. Meaghan on August 17, 2012 at 11:58 pm REPLY

    My husband is from Pittsburgh and we met in our sophomore year at Pitt, so we also enjoyed picking out Pittsburgh landmarks in The Dark Knight. And while the rest of the theater quietly took in the mayhem brought on by Bane, we both couldn’t help laughing out loud as Hines Ward out-ran the imploding field that swallowed up all the other players and managed to score a touchdown.

    Reply

    • Michelle on August 18th, 2012 at 4:41 pm

      Haha! I had the same reaction during that scene as well, trying to see who all got on camera. I was surprised to see Bill Cowher!

      Reply

  17. Anita at Hungry Couple on August 18, 2012 at 12:33 am REPLY

    I like this type of ‘slice of life’ post! Our doggie always finds the patch of sun, too. And yes, we can relate to the sleeping photo. Somehow two grown humans get shoved up against the wall while a 20 lb. King Charles Spaniel stretches out and rests her head on the pillows. What’s wrong with us? :)

    Reply

  18. Tracey on August 18, 2012 at 7:47 pm REPLY

    Your trip sounds so amazing!! i wish Shane was a tennis fan, I would love to go to the US Open one year :) Also, I seriously want every single one of those nail polish colors – gorgeous!

    Reply

  19. Lindsey on August 19, 2012 at 4:53 pm REPLY

    My first 5 try’s at mozzarella were a big flop too don’t feel bad! I can’t get unpasturized whole milk in my area anymore and that’s the only way I like the way it turns out!

    Reply

    • Michelle on September 4th, 2012 at 12:06 pm

      That does make me feel a little better! I can’t find the unpasteurized either, so I’ve been trying with “low processed”, that’s the best I can find.

      Reply

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