Thursday, January 31, 2008

Mississippi Upstream

01/31/08 - Mississippi Upstream

The main river channel opened sending huge rectagular sheets of ice down river and into the dam at Coon Rapids Dam. This photo was taken standing on the walkway above the dam looking upriver. Champlin is on the left bank, Coon Rapids is on the right bank, Anoka is further upriver around the bend.

01/31/08 - 2

Rectangle Ice slowly flowing down river. This sheet is hung up at the dam. Precision 90 degree angles and straight edges. How is this possible with ice?

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Mill Pond Falls

The Mill Pond above the falls, is fed upstream by Elm Creek. This outlfow flows down to meet the Mississippi River. Above the falls is the West River Road a part of the scenic Great River Road that follows the Mississippi River down to the Gulf of Mexico. For more info:

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Baked Pizza

Pizza Fire
Pizza Cotta Forno

Action shot: My Neapolitan style pizza being baked at Punch Pizza in Eden Prairie!


Siciliana, a fabulous pizza of prosciutto, artichoke, picholine olive, and basil. Compliments of Punch Pizza! Traditional pizza; this is the real deal!

Punch Pizza is as close as we Minnesotans will come to enjoying a traditionally authentic Neapolitan pizza from Napoli. I have never been to Napoli to enjoy an authentic pizza pie, but it is high on my "To Do List".

Besides my many visits to Punch Pizza here in the Twin Cities Metropolitan area, the closest I have come to Neapolitan style pizza was in Roma. And I must say from memory, (when it comes to food, my memory is spot on), pizza from Punch Pizza reminds me of the pizza we enjoyed outside one evening on a street caf'e from Ristorante Grotta Azzurra on Via Cicerone, 62a 00193 in Roma.

The only thing missing is the gelato.

* Please note: Katie in Robbinsdale suggested I mention that Punch Pizza cooks the pizza in the wood fired brick oven at 800 degrees F for 90 seconds! and I will quote Katie, "It's a great fact that makes Punch so unique and cannot be ignored!"

Thanks Katie from Robbinsdale, the blog is more fun when it is more interactive like this. Stop by soon.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Picnic Time

Mississippi River Point Park frozen under a cold blanket of snow. Anybody ready for a picnic?

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Diamond Plate

Sidewalk snow removal; the tire imprint on the snow from the snowblower left cool pattern on the sidewalk. Even more interesting was on the manhole cover.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Old Bass - Great Sound

A bass with character. From a jazz ensamble, Reception Jazz, at my friend's 40th birthday party. This bass was made in Czechslovakia based off a german design.

It's age is uncertain, but approximated to be150 years old. It's current owner has owned this bass for 10 years. It was purchased from a friend's workshop where it was stored for untold years in the attic. This bass was the best of three, well worn, but it still produces great sound.

For more information about this excellent jazz band and to see the bass in action, please see their website.

"The string around it is a temporary repair that I have made to help support a brace that runs along the inside of the bass".

Friday, January 25, 2008

French Boule

Baking artisan breads is my other wintertime hobby besides photography. It allstarted with a bread machine and a converted recipe for bread machine baked Italian Panettone. I modified this recipe to reflect a more authentic Panettone. This proved disasterous for my bread machine.

Off to William Sonoma for a shopping spree, a Kitchenaide stand mixer, Pizza peel, baking stone, and other baking essentials and books. The stand mixer is the only piece of machinery I use, other than the electric oven.

Here is my French Baguette...boule, rather. boules are easier to make, plus this makes great sandwich bread.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

At the Movies

Hand held.
I was amazed how this turned out while handholding my camera and how clear it is at an elevated ISO. This is our town's movie house just across it's parking lot is the 'Bou where we can be seen nearly every weekend morning. Stop by the 'Bou some weekend morning, I'll buy ou a buy the scones. ;-)

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

White Oak

Not literally in the sense of tree type. Honestly, I have no idea what type of tree this is. Only that his makes for an interesting least in my opinion.

We are in the middle of Doris A. Kemp Park, between Highway 169, West River Road, and the Mill Ponds. Here, we have a slightly different view of the bridge I showed you on Monday.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Four Legged Friends

01/22/08 - Cooper
Here is Cooper, my new four legged friend. On a trip to the far northeastern metro with my wife and sister-in-law to the horse stable, I met Cooper. He seemed quite friendly despite the warnings of his alleged cantankerous demeanor. We seemed to get along. Perhaps he realized I was as much of a crumudgeon as he.

I hope to visit Cooper again in the future when he is outdoors in greener pastures. I'll share an apple with him.

01/22/08 - Nicki
Meet Nicki. Nicki is more gentle and a bit more shy than Cooper. But he is freindly none the less. Yet I did witness him sport an attitude durring a riding lesson. I am amazed at the differing personalities these horses posess. We too got along fine, altough he seemed to be wary of me.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Frozen Pond Scum

No, not the green colored goo we see on this pond in August; the frozen kind, white. The hard water wintery season causes me troubles with the camera. Under sunny skies, everything is too bright. Drop a few stops, reset the exposure compensation, etc. Do you have any tips you wish to share for bright reflecive winter scenes?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Mr. Krabs

A trip to the south metro for dinner with friends. First was skating on the backyard ice rink and camp fire to warm by. Perfect for building up an apetite. We took turns sliding downhill with the children, (and kids like me of all ages). ;-) Later was this fabulous meal! Poor Mr. Krabs lost his legs. Thanks MK for a great evening!

Saturday, January 19, 2008


Even in winter, the cement must be poured.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Winter Shades of Red

01/18/08 - Burried Hydrant
Burried Hydrant. Burried deep in the snow, someone needs to get a shovel and dig this out.

01/18/08 - Sidewalk Disc
Sidewalk disc- telecommunicaions accessible entry.

01/15/08 - Scaffold

Scaffolding - New townhome construction.

Thursday, January 17, 2008


Go west, young man! On the other side of the pedestrian bridge, crossing westward over highway 169. An explosion of townhomes have sprung up even faster than the new strip mall develpoments.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Kitchen Supplies

One of our favorite shops in Maple Grove, Williams Sonoma. They have everything you need and more. Some items are a bit high priced, other items are priced nicely. So far, Williams Sonoma is the closest retailer for my favorites; Amarena Cherries, Illy coffee, my baking needs, and sometimes, free samples of tastey treats.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Red Brick Church

01/115/08 - St the Baptist Detail
St John the Baptist, standing between the steeples.

The Parish dates back to 1857 in a log cabin. In 1904, this Gothic "Cruciform" in style church was built.

01/15/08 - St john the Baptist St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Dayton, MN on a wintery day. Such a pretty church that can be seen for some distances. The bell tower is 150 feet high with a 13 foot tall cross, the belfry is 96 feet hight with a 7 foot tall cross.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Suburban Trail

The trail that separates the neighborhoods; older neighborhoods on the right beyond the trees, new development on the left. This morning, the trails were empty, too chilly to walk. In summer, these trails are packed with people enjoying the summer evenings.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Under the Balsams

Most people look at trees from a distance. Here, i stood under this balsam for a different wintery view.

Saturday, January 12, 2008


Pracna on Maine Street, built in 1890, the oldest restaurant in Minneapolis.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Leather Tacks

A trip to a horse stable in the far north metro. Fascinating to see all these equestrian reins, or tacks as they are termed by my sister-in-law.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Snowy Scooter

A Schwinn Gladiaator scooter forgotten and left in the snow. Soon it will become burried in a blanket of snow, only to be rediscovered this spring. hopefully earlier. It is actually on top of a frozen pond.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Mill Ruins

Autum flashback to Mill Ruins Park along the Mississippi River.

Mill Ruins Park is an archaeological area filled with artfacts from the flour milling industry. along the riverbanks are foundations of the mills, tunnels, and outflow tailrace waterflow systems as shown here.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Restaurant Glow

01/08/08 - Bostons

Boston's Restaurant & Sports Bar
A bit of Boston in the North Metro. Soft evening lights illuminate Boston's restaurant.

01/08/08 - Buca Glow

Buca di Beppo
Maple Grove's Buca di Beppo illuminates the winter streets at night.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Green Room

Patina details on the solarium at the Swedish Institute on Park Ave. The museum, located within the historic Turnblad mansion, showcases the Institute's collection of Swedish glass, decorative and fine arts, textiles, and items from Sweden. The permanent exhibit "Swedish Life in the Twin Cities" explores the local Swedish-American community through photographs, diaries, vintage recordings and immigrant artifacts.

Saturday, January 5, 2008


Looks more like a lion than a gargoyle to me. Detail above the entrance to the Swedish Institute.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Ronald Mcvisited

McBack in September of last year, the 15th to be exact, I posted a photo about the McDemolition of a certain fast "food" restaurant.

(Please follow this McLink )

The long wait of anticipation is over. Ronald is back in his new kitchen flipping burgers one after another in his fancy new McRestaurant.
And look, it is the same view, the same tree, the same Mcsign. Except we are missing out on their "free small hot coffee".

Now Open!

Thursday, January 3, 2008


Biaggi's Ristorante Italiano in Maple Grove serves up fabulous food and wine. My recomendations are Rigatoni Alla Toscana (Large tube pasta sautéed with Italian sausage, roasted peppers, onions and tomato sauce. Topped with imported Montchevré herb goat cheese and basil.) and Butternut Squash Ravioli (Roasted butternut squash filled ravioli tossed in a brown-butter-sage sauce with toasted walnuts, diced butternut squash and parmesan cheese.) And a bottle of Valpolicella...or chianti. Delizioso!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008


Whew, it is over! The Thanksgiving - Christmas - New Year's Blitz is over! We are all tired. Dog tired. And so happy it is over! Even our ferocious watchdog is "dog tired".

Here he is, I come home from work to catch him sleeping at the top of the stairs while on "guard duty". Best to let sleeping dogs lie, he's had a busy monh of guarding the house from under the Christmas tree.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Theme Day for January, 'Best of'

Starting off the new year with a bang. Theme Day for January is "the best of." Revisitng my post back on October 24th, Tequila Sunrise.
I thought it apropriate with tonight's celebratory tequila shot(s) and a glorious morning for the new year, (lots of water and aspirin). ;-)
Not the best photo compositionwise, the colors do make it work. I actually have a thing for scenes like this with bare trees in silhouette. Besides, in this time of dull dreary winter days, we can use a touch of color. OK, an explosion of color!
Happy New Year, everyone. Have fun, be safe.
See all the Theme Day participant's links below;
Paris, France - London, England - Hyde, UK - West Sacramento (CA), USA - Grenoble, France - Stockholm, Sweden - Riga, Latvia - Saint Paul (MN), USA - Manila, Philippines - Silver Spring (MD), USA - Weston (FL), USA - Prague, Czech Republic - New Orleans (LA), USA - Wichita (KS), USA - Cleveland (OH), USA - San Francisco (CA), USA - Hobart (Tasmania), Australia - Greenville (SC), USA - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Menton, France - Monte Carlo, Monaco - Mainz, Germany - Melbourne, Australia - Portland (OR), USA - Albuquerque (NM), USA - Wassenaar (ZH), Netherlands - Kyoto, Japan - Tokyo, Japan - Toulouse, France - Naples (FL), USA - Jakarta, Indonesia - Brussels, Belgium - Stayton (OR), USA - Selma (AL), USA - Mexico City, Mexico - Ocean Township (NJ), USA - Minneapolis (MN), USA - Port Angeles (WA), USA - Toruń, Poland - Fort Lauderdale (FL), USA - Budapest, Hungary - Baziège, France - Nashville (TN), USA - Saint Louis (MO), USA - Cottage Grove (MN), USA - Chicago (IL), USA - Prescott (AZ), USA - Bellefonte (PA), USA - Nottingham, UK - Moscow, Russia - Philadelphia (PA), USA - Evry, France - Trujillo, Peru - Arlington (VA), USA - Denpasar, Indonesia - American Fork (UT), USA - Seattle (WA), USA - Chandler (AZ), USA - Coral Gables (FL), USA - Montpellier, France - Joplin (MO), USA - Pilisvörösvár, Hungary - Crystal Lake (IL), USA - Bucaramanga (Santander), Colombia - Boston (MA), USA - Torun, Poland - New York City (NY), USA - Dunedin (FL), USA - Quincy (MA), USA - Stavanger, Norway - Chateaubriant, France - Maple Ridge (BC), Canada - Jackson (MS), USA - Wailea (HI), USA - Port Elizabeth, South Africa - Budapest, Hungary - Austin (TX), USA - Montréal (QC), Canada - Cypress (TX), USA - Bicheno, Australia - Wrocław, Poland - Brookville (OH), USA - Minneapolis (MN), USA - Nelson, New Zealand - Cheltenham, UK - Wellington, New Zealand - Rabaul, Papua New Guinea - Mumbai (Maharashtra), India - London, UK - Haninge, Sweden - Saint-Petersburg, Russian Federation - Arradon, France - Jefferson City (MO), USA - Orlando (FL), USA - Mumbai, India - Terrell (TX), USA - Bogor, Indonesia - Delta (CO), USA - Radonvilliers, France - Saigon, Vietnam - San Diego (CA), USA - Adelaide (SA), Australia - Belgrade, Serbia - Auckland, New Zealand - Seguin (TX), USA - Inverness (IL), USA - Oslo, Norway - Singapore, Singapore - Las Vegas (NV), USA - New York City (NY), USA - Anderson (SC), USA - Torino, Italy - Susanville (CA), USA - San Diego (CA), USA - Sharon (CT), USA - Melbourne, Australia - Port Vila, Vanuatu - Memphis (Tennessee), USA