Friday, February 26, 2021

Roasted Vegetable Frittata

Last Friday's blog was about roasting leftover raw vegetables.  If you have leftovers from that, they make an awesome frittata.  Whip up four eggs with a little half-n-half, place the vegetables in a glass pie plate (or any oven-proof casserole dish), pour in the whipped eggs, then twirl to get an even distribution.  Bake at 350 degrees until the eggs are firm, about 15 minutes.

In the frittata shown, Chef Elaine used leftover roasted carrots, red peppers, broccoli, potatoes, and onions to make us a fantastic brunch.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Peyton's Places and Ball State

An episode of season 2 of Peyton's Places on ESPN+ featured Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana, host Peyton Manning and arguably Ball State's most famous alumni, David Letterman.  The majority of the show featured proposed NFL rule changes concocted by David, such as making the football field 1/4-mile long, raising the goal posts five extra feet each quarter, and having the entire offense and defense on the field for one play per game.  After discussing the merits of the proposals, David and Peyton get the Ball State Cardinal football team on the field, where they participate in live demonstrations of each change.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021


The can ceiling lights in the basement needed a 6-inch circular cutout in the ceiling tile and somehow my brain remembered that I owned a protractor, which turned out to be exactly 6 inches wide.  I drew a couple semi-circles in pencil and cut the perfect-sized opening with a razor-blade knife.  Easy and peasy! 

Monday, February 22, 2021

Great American Rail-Trail

Being able to ride, run, or walk for over 3,700 continuous miles, from Washington D.C. to Washington State, is the vision of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.  You can see the envisioned path at the link below and for Ohioans most of that path is already in place.  Locally, the route between Columbus, Ohio to the western edge of Montgomery County includes sections of Ohio to Erie Trail, Creekside Trail, Mad River Trail, Great Miami River Trail, and Wolf Creek Trail, with the only gap being five miles between west Dayton and Trotwood.

Friday, February 19, 2021

Sheet Pan Vegetables

When you have leftover raw vegetables, a little of this, a little of that, cut them into bite-sized pieces, stick them in a plastic bag and add a little oil, salt, pepper, and whatever spices you like.  Place a cookie sheet in the oven, set it to 400 degrees then wait until it finishes preheating.  Take the cookie sheet out of the oven,  dump the vegetables on it and return to the oven, baking them for 20 minutes at the same 400 degrees.  Chef Elaine used red bell pepper, onion, broccoli, carrots, and butternut squash to make the masterpiece shown below.

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Miter Box

I bought this miter box and hand saw combo a forgotten number of years ago but somehow remembered I had it as I needed to cut some casings and wanted to avoid using my table saw that's out in a very cold garage.  It has grooves for cutting at 22.5, 45, and 90 degrees and makes a much smoother cut than a circular saw.  Ignore the shag carpeting on the floor.  It's going to the dump soon.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Medicare Blunder

Assuming that Medicare would cover my annual physical and waiting a year since my last one, I was surprised to see that it wasn't covered, which set me back $279.  The explanation, per the Explanation of Benefits, was ...

"This service was denied. Medicare doesn't cover an Annual Wellness Visit within the first 12 months of your Medicare Part B coverage. Medicare does cover a one-time Welcome to Medicare preventive visit within the first 12 months."

So I should have scheduled the "Welcome to Medicare" visit, not the "Annual Wellness" visit.

While Medicare overall is pretty good, there are a few "gotchas", and this one "gotcha'd me good".

More info at this AARP link.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Magic Mouse 2

I bought my first Magic Mouse (which I truly love) ten years ago and it finally gave up the ghost.  With the snowstorm coming, I rushed over to the Apple Store at The Greene and purchased a new one, which is now in its second version.  The big difference is there are no replaceable AA batteries needed (yeah!), just charge it with the provided cable plugged into a USB port on one side and into the little lightning port shown at the bottom of the picture below.  The only downside is when it's being charged you can't use it.

Monday, February 15, 2021

Backreaction Blog

I really admire people that can take incredibly complex topics and bring them down to my level.  One such blog I recently ran across is Beackreaction, where Sabine Hossenfelder, a theoretical physicist and Research Fellow at the Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies, tackles subjects involving quantum technology, the origin of atoms, the reality of time, and much more.  Her blogs, which you can find at the link below, also include embedded YouTube links, giving you the option of reading or listening.

Shout out to my friend John S. for the tip!

Friday, February 12, 2021

Fullstar Chopper

This is sort of like a Swiss army knife for your kitchen and packs a bunch of different slicers, dicers, spiralers, graters, and even a juicer, into an amazingly small package.  Perhaps the best feature is the cut-resistant glove to help keep the tips of your fingers from becoming a casualty.

Shout out to our friend Grace for finding this first!

Thursday, February 11, 2021


My daughter gifted me StoryWorth for a Christmas present and I couldn't be more thrilled.  Each week I get an email with a question she's selected and I email back with a story from my life.  After 52 weeks, all my responses are compiled into a book like the one shown below.  Every week I get to recall parts of my life I haven't thought about in ages and being a guy that likes to write, it's no bother to sit behind my keyboard and bang out a tale.

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Dishwasher Filter

Until a few weeks ago, I never knew, and never thought to consider, that a dishwasher has a filter in it, in our case, two of them.  If I showed you what ours looked like before I cleaned them, you might never come over for dinner again, it was that obscene.  If you've never cleaned yours, you might want to find your Tums first.

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

A Punt

The indentation at the bottom of a wine bottle is called a punt.  No clue why it's called that, but its shape made sense in the olden days when bottles were hand-fashioned by glassblowers.  But there are some good reasons for keeping the punt, including...

  • A thin-walled bottom could easily break
  • For sparkling wines, the punt increases the strength of the bottle
  • Extra weight at the bottom of the bottle gives the bottle more stability
Personally, I like the other end better, you know, the end where the wine comes out...

Monday, February 8, 2021

New Lug Nuts

Most of the lug nuts on my 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee were nasty looking like the ones in the left picture, and after 17 years I guess that's expected, so an asked-for Christmas gift was the $18 set of new shiny ones seen on the right.  Even though I did find the tire iron (see my 1/18/2021 post for details), removing them turned out to be a problem, and not wanting to cause any damage that could cost a bunch to fix, I had the nice folks at USA Tire (see my 3/26/2019 post) do the installation, which only set me back $20 plus tax.


Friday, February 5, 2021

Juggernaut Pinot Noir

While most of the three-wines-of-the-month we get from Rumbleseat Wine are good, occasionally we get one that we go back for more, in this case, a 2018 Juggernaut Pinot Noir.  The three bottles below were the last they had on the shelf, but if they get more in, I'm sure we'll snag even more.  This is not a wimpy Pinot, but the oomph you might expect from a Cabernet while maintaining that unmistakable Pinot cherry taste.

Thursday, February 4, 2021

Maker's Mark Cards

The annual Christmas gift for Maker's Mark Ambassador members is the deck of cards shown below.  That fact it arrived in February I'm sure is pandemic-related.  Still, it's always nice to have a fresh new deck of cards when friends, eventually, will dare come out and visit.

Wednesday, February 3, 2021


This thoughtful Christmas gift is going to be a hit this summer when it's paired with the included 100" projector screen and a Fire TV stick that uses our Bose Portable Spreaker for awesome sound.  We envision mounting the screen to the outside wall at the south end of our patio and watching Netflix at sunset.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

The Best Of 2011-2020

Over on my Life Experiences blog, I've taken the last ten years of my "Best of the Year" blogs, totaling 100 of the coolest things I've done or experienced, selected the top 10, and compiled them into a "Best Of The Decade".

Monday, February 1, 2021

High School Class Makes Desks

My wife's cousin is that type of guy who sees a problem then sets out to fix it, in this case, kids schooling at home without the benefit of a desk.  His design takes a single 4'x8' sheet of wood, donated by Lowe's, cuts it into the needed surfaces, legs, and supports which are screwed together.  He and his construction technology students constructed fifty desks to start, gave them away for free, and are busy making more.  These kids got the best life lesson I can imagine.

This link includes a 1:43-long video that will warm your heart.