Saturday, June 27, 2009

"RAMBLIN' ROSE" Road Trip to Georgia!

With great anticipation I have set out on a journey. Accompanying my hubby on a big rig we accepted a load from Idaho to Georgia. I have been on many similar trips in the past and each time is a new experience. I am so excited to share some of them with you!

The Lincoln Memorial, Wyoming- 1-80, Summit Rest Area (Exit 323)



This is a nice rest stop to stretch your legs, walk the dog and learn about Wyoming. Located on I-80, 10 miles SE of Laramie the Lincoln Memorial stands at the summit near Sherman Hill, and defines the highest point on I-80. Built by Wyoming's Parks Commission to honor Lincoln's 150th birthday and to commemorate the Lincoln Highway. The prototype transcontinental route was designed for automobile traffic and at the time created a stimulation within our country for highway improvement. It was sculpted by Robert Russin, a University of Wyoming professor and was completed in 1927. It is said that Russin's ashes are housed within the monument. Once you have gazed upon the monument, go inside and grab free publications regarding all that Wyoming has to offer and don't forget to gaze upon the terrain on the observatory deck.


121 East Ivinson Avenue
Laramie, Wyoming 82070
(307) 742-7046
http://jeffreysbistro.com/

Located within the heart of downtown Laramie (8 miles east of the Lincoln Monument off of I-80) is Jeffrey's Bistro. Rouge in rebellion of the red meat fare common in cowboy country is a thoughtful bistro that features fresh ingredients and non-red meat fare that fresh faced, bike riding locals seem to love. I can understand why- it doesn't matter what they don't serve, it's all about what they do. With our hearts set on Macaroni and Cheese, we ordered off of the kid's menu, but in an adult size. For $7.95, a crock of Mac-n-Cheese is served up with a rich sauce that to my taste buds is based in cream cheese. The Pasta is the swirly kind that just dances on your tongue. The plentiful, well seasoned, cheesy sauce can almost compare to a fondue. It's really rich and really good. Especially when dipping the toasted wheat rolls that were provided to our table. The meal is served with a chunky, tangy and fresh applesauce mixture that helped to break up the richness of the entree. We did not have the chance to experience their extensive and eclectic House Beers or House Specialty drinks such as the Martini; which consists of Bacardi Limon, M&R Vermouth and a splash of Cranberry Cocktail. But, if we were not on the job; it would be a possibility. Also, because we had a few miles to put on and did not want to take a nap, we avoided their fantastic Sarah's Desserts. In our fantasy, plus what a local on the street recommended, we would have ordered the special; which on that day featured a tart consisting of a buttery pastry crust, with a lemon creme and topped with blueberries. If you happen to have a dessert, it's so easy to walk it off in the adorable and unexpectedly beat nick old-town of Laramie!

"RAMBLIN ROSE" The Sod House Museum-I-80 (Exit 211)


The Sod House Museum was established in 1988 in Gothenburg, Nebraska. The museum stands next to a full-scale replica of an authentic sod house, and depicts the type of dwelling used by early settlers in the Central Plains Region.

This memorial to the first settlers in the area features a barn, sod house and life-sized barbed wire sculptures. The barn-shaped museum houses memorabilia and photographs of the pioneer era.

Hours for the museum: 8 am - 9 am summer, 9 am - 6 pm May and Sept. (Call to verify)
Phone: 308-537-2076


And right across the street....







Randazzle Cafe

427 Lake Avenue

Gothenburg, NE 69138


With easy truck parking and on the CB radio the rumor is that this restaurant serves home-cooked style food, so we headed on over. Each table had funny, little joke books one could read while waiting for their order. The meal we ordered was not quite what we expected, but being an eternal optimist, I am sure that there are many items on their menu that they do very well and feel that perhaps it was just an off day. Although there may be room for some improvement, I feel that the Randazzle is worth a second shot.

"FOOD REVIEW" Trail's End, Missouri- US HWY 136 (Exit 110)

Walking into the Trail's End Restaurant, one is immediately struck by the beauty of a stained glass window and the early prairie decor. Woodwork and interesting antiques add to the wonderful character. The waitresses are worth their weight in gold and very attentive. Often coming by to refill your coffee mug faster than you can drink it. They have an extensive menu featuring Americana fare and serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. I had the luxury of dining there twice and tried the "Everything Omelet" consisting of three fluffy eggs wrapped around sauteed onions, green peppers, mushrooms, ham, sausage, bacon and oozing with cheddar, white and yellow American cheese. The meal comes with hash browns and toast or a half order of biscuits and country gravy for $7.29. The omelet was just wonderful and perfectly seasoned. So tasty that I finished every bite. The second time, I tried a Hot Roast Beef Sandwich and was very pleased with the thin slices of tender Roast Beef piled high upon a thick slice of bread that resembled Texas Toast. The Beef gravy was wonderful and very silky. The meal came with whipped Mashed Potatoes for $7.29.

From the outside it looks like an everyday truck stop, but inside you will find an array of wind chimes, whimsical collectors items, homemade fudge encased in glass and even a porcelain doll shop.

Trail's End

1303 West US HWY 136

Rockport, MO 64482

Hours: Open 7 days a week 6:00 a.m.- 10:30 p.m.

"FOOD REVIEW" Waffle House- Tennessee

Knowing I was heading through Southern states, I could not wait to get to a Waffle House!


A favorite hangout for the Blue Collar Comedy guys and a staple for anyone who loves quick, home style meals served up with a little sass. These little diners are sprinkled throughout the South and serve good food. What I love is no matter which Waffle House I go to the employees always have character and attitude which is endearing. Sometimes I wonder if it is actually a prerequisite to being hired.


Forget everything else, the Hash Browns are where it's at. The texture is so unique that you can literally taste each individual string of potato. They are crispy on top, while the interior has a bounce to it as you chew, kind of like a noodle. Beware-can cause serious cravings!
http://www.wafflehouse.com/

"FOOD REVIEW" Lotty's Sports Bar & Grill- Evanston, Wyoming


Lotty's Sports Bar & Grill

1925 Harrison Dr.

Evanston Wyoming

307-789-5483

Lotty’s Sports Bar and Grill is right next to The Comfort Inn in Evanston, Wyoming. Complete with at least five flat screen televisions, a full bar, pool table and jukebox, it's pretty obvious this is a great local pub. What's not so obvious is the truly wonderful food that they serve up. They have a full menu from hamburgers, steaks and nachos, although their nightly dinner specials are out of this world. On Monday nights their special is Barbecue Pork Ribs for $6.49. For that price one can get a hamburger, fries and soda through any major chain's drive through. So as I ordered, I wondered about the quality and quantity of the dinner. Boy, was I surprised when a half rack of perfectly cooked Pork Ribs came out along with a big pile of hand cut, fresh french fries and corn on the cob. The ribs were so good! I also absolutely love their Onion Rings. The batter is perfect and the onions are sweet and juicy. Their dinner specials start at 5:00 p.m., so if your in the area, check them out and go early. They have been know to sell out of the ribs by 8:30 p.m. I really want to get back there to try their other specials.

Lotty's Dinner Specials
Monday- BBQ Pork Ribs $6.49
Tuesday-Baked Chicken Dinner $7.99
Wednesday-Veal Parmesan and Spaghetti $7.99
Thursday-Stuffed Pork Chops $9.99
Friday-6 oz. New York Steak and Shrimp $11.99
Saturday-Baked Lasagna $7.99
Sunday-Yankee Pot Roast $7.99

Friday, June 26, 2009

"STORY TIME" Holiday Skating Rink and The King Of Pop

Blue Leather Roller Skates

The place was Holiday Skating Rink. The time was 1980 and the apparel was satin jackets, rainbow shoelaces, big hoop earrings and roller skates. I was just a kid, at my favorite hangout. Leaning against the wall waiting for Fast Skate, which featured races between the best skaters, to be over. I waited with great anticipation because as soon as Fast Skate was over, the rest of us could get back on the rink and skate to our favorite music. With that, the lights soon dimmed and only the colorful illuminations of a disco ball would reflect off the walls and with great disappointment that usually meant a slow song would come on next. This was called the dreaded "couples skate" where many of the older kids would own the rink, holding hands as they skated to the song. All the while, the rest of us younger kids, frozen in place, tortured in the excruciating discomfort of not having a partner to skate with, waited for our turn.
Then, the first notes of the familiar interlude of Michael Jackson's "Rock With You" began to seep through the speakers causing a blessed flush of relief because although the song starts slow, it builds into a wonderful rhythm that seemed to have been written for the sole reason of swaying your shoulders while gliding on roller skates. It was a song that anyone could dance to and didn't necessarily need a partner. So with that- all the youngsters, including myself gave a great push off onto that rink and allowed the music to carry us around in circles without a care in the world. Thanks, Michael!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

"SWEET RIDES USA"

"Unicorn Mural on a Shiny Big Rig"-Nebraska

"What's Up With The Paint Job Truck"-Nebraska

"Now That's A Sweet Ride"-Missouri
Side Note: Check out more pics of this collector car and other muscle cars at: http://www.clarksvideogroup.com/

"Hardworking Chevy"-Missouri

"Good Ole' Truck"-Idaho

"Way Too Fast Racing Boats!" -Idaho




To Be Continued.....

"Focus on the journey, not the destination. Joy is found not in finishing an activity but in doing it." -Greg Anderson

Monday, June 15, 2009

"STORY TIME" The Traveling Spirit


The day after school let out my youngest son brought out some colorful chalk and decided to create a masterpiece on the driveway. When the picture was completed, we stood together to look at it. I was reminded of a time when I was a child, looking forward to Summer. It was always such an exciting time because I knew that some sort of travel would be involved. I had always loved to go to new places and experience new things. Sometimes I would look at a big map on the wall and think to myself that I could go to anyplace I wanted. As an adult, I found that I still have the spirit to travel. Luckily, I married a truck driver. Over the years, when I get a chance to jump into the truck and experience this beautiful country, I never hesitate.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

"GOOD STUFF" Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce!

When Country Bob's contacted me regarding sampling their product, I was intrigued. Sure enough, I received two bottles of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce and it was perfect timing! Having been on the road for a while, I was a little out of sorts and thought it was Father's Day this weekend. I wanted to make a nice dinner for my hubby.

It was Easy! Marinate a 2-3 lb. Tri-Tip Roast for 4 hours in:

1/2 (13 ounce) bottle of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce

1/3 cup Soy Sauce

1/3 Olive Oil

1 teaspoon Crushed Garlic

A sprinkle of Ginger

A dash of Black Pepper

Fire up the grill to medium-high heat and allow the meat to come to room temperature before placing on the grill. Placed the roast onto the center of the grill and cook for approximately 15-18 minutes on each side, with the lid closed. Remove from heat, brush on a bit more of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce and let it rest, covered, for 10 minutes before slicing.
Obviously, my husband must have thought this was to his benefit and neglected to point out that Father's Day is actually next weekend! All is well that ends well. The meal was simply delicious. The Tri-Tip had a beautiful crust on the outside and was completely moist and tender on the inside. Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce was a hit and we all had a good chuckle!

I think what makes this Steak/Chicken/Hamburger sauce so unique is that it is made with all natural ingredients. One of the ingredients is Tamarind, a tangy fruit that when combined with savory ingredients; provides a taste that goes just perfect with grilling.

They have several products that would make an awesome Father's Day present!

Check them out at:

Country Bob, Inc.

211 South Lincoln Blvd./ P.O. Box 706

Centralia, IL 62801

(618) 533-2375

www.countrybobs.com

Weekly Mailer Guest Food Review (Issue 06/08/09)

When Kentucky Fried Chicken recently unveiled their newest creation, Grilled Chicken to the public, who would have thought it would have achieved such publicity? Of course, anytime Oprah Winfrey gets involved the chances are pretty good. To achieve more advertising, Kentucky Fried Chicken approached Oprah regarding downloadable coupons good for a free, 2-piece chicken meal. In May, Oprah, hoping to give a boost to families affected by the economy, announced it on her show. Nationwide, news stations reported that over 4 million people approached local KFC’s to redeem their coupon and the restaurant chain was caught off guard. Finding the large number of people overwhelming and as many restaurants did not have enough inventory, Kentucky Fried Chicken was unable to honor the free coupons. Instead, they provided rain checks and sweetened the deal with a free beverage. For a moment, it seemed as though there may have been a chicken shortage on KFC’s horizon, but in all actuality was a true marketing gem for the franchise. When hearing talk of juicy, grilled chicken in the news, I became susceptible to both curiosity and cravings. Soon, I found myself in the drive thru. When the employee asked whether I would like Original, Extra Crispy or Grilled, I simply answered “All three, please”.


Places To Visit:


Kentucky Fried Chicken
243 Overland Avenue, Burley
Hours: Mon.-Thurs 11:00 a.m. - 9:30 p.m.,
Fri.-Sat. 11:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m., Sun. 11:00 a.m. -9:00 p.m.
Phone: 678-3311
Website:
www.kfc.com


I did not make things as simple as believed by ordering all three, after all. By visiting the nutrition guide at KFC’s website, I discovered that by caloric comparison the three choices vary greatly. A piece of Original Chicken Breast has 370 calories, Extra Crispy a whopping 490, while the Grilled chicken breast has 180 calories. The kids and I did a taste test and thankfully, the Extra Crispy came in last. Opinions soon divided as the children went “old school” and preferred the Original, while my preference was the Grilled. A ten piece meal with three sides runs $17.99. Speaking of sides, my favorite at KFC is the Mashed Potatoes and Gravy. I think its really yummy and in my book competes with the chicken itself. Never one to let a tiny, little calorie get in the way of flavor- I almost decided ignorance is bliss and did not want to know how many calories it had. Only for the greater good did I look it up and there were a few surprises… Between Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, Macaroni and Cheese or Potato Wedges, which do you think had the most calories? If you chose the Potato Wedges you were right! An individual serving of the wedges has 260 calories, the Mac and Cheese has 180, while the Mashed Potatoes and Gravy had the least at 130. This gives new meaning to “one piece or two piece”, and now the subject matter is not about chicken- I’m talking about bathing suits!

TO ADVERTISE, SUBSCRIBE OR PLACE CLASSIFIED ADS WITHIN MINI-CASSIA'S WEEKLY MAILER OR WEEKLY NEWS JOURNAL:
221 WEST MAIN STREET BURLEY, ID 83336
(208) 678-6643

"STORY TIME" FAMILY


Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in another city.-- George Burns
That's a cute quote, although I do wish the other city that my family resides wasn't so far! Although I stay in touch just about everyday, I look forward to our visit during the Summertime. It's a comfort and blessing to know there is always a place that I will be welcomed with open arms.

"ROSE TIP" Light Rail!

While traveling this summer, check out your destination's transit system ahead of time. It may save a lot of time on parking, time and gas. It's also a fun way to see a city!

"FOOD REVIEW" Amarin Thai Cuisine, Sacramento, CA


Amarin Thai Cuisine
900 12th Street
Sacramento, CA(916) 447-9063
Renown for their delicious Thai food and extensive menu, locals know to head to Amarin's early to beat the weekend rush. The Barbecue Chicken is a beautifully roasted Garlic infused Chicken, with a fantastic Barbecue sauce that is served on the side. The serving is a whole chicken cut into sections and perfect for sharing with your table. The Barbecue sauce is not what one would think of as a traditional sauce and it almost appears as a gel. But once it is spread onto the tender Chicken it adds a smokey flavor that is hard to beat. Paired with the Shrimp Pad Thai, it is just out of this world! The Shrimp are plump and burst in your mouth while the Pad Thai is perfectly cooked and served with several condiments, such as chopped peanuts or red chili upon request.

"RAMBLIN ROSE" California State Capital Museum, Sacramento, CA

If your in your home state, or visiting another, whatever you do, check out the state capital. It's entertaining and picture worthy, not to mention good for brushing up on your history. Best of all it's Free! Just go online for the state your interested in or check your state government listings.
In this case I visited the California State Capital.
Don't forget to look up and check out the dome!
10th and L Streets State Capitol, Room B-27
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 324-0333
website:
http://capitalmuseum.ca.gov


I wonder what the "Govenator" is working on in his office?

Building Hours:
Weekdays: 8 - 5
Weekends: 9 - 5
Admission: Free
Basement Theater Films are shown daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Admission is also Free!

"RAMBLIN ROSE" The Aquatic Center- Lake Natomas, Gold River, CA


Sacramento State Aquatic Center

1901 Hazel Avenue

Gold River, California 95670

(916) Aquatic or 278-2842

Fax (916) 278-1105

Email: aquaticcenter@csus.edu

What a blast! Rent sit atop kayaks for $10 per hour. Take your time touring beautiful Lake Natomas, as the current is very light and there is plenty of cool places to dock your kayak. Have a picnic along the way or view the Nature Reserve that houses many a bird species. The Aquatic center does not round up to the nearest hour when you turn in your kayak so if you run an hour and a half, that's all they charge you! The Aquatic Center is in it's 25th year of operation and offers canoe, kayak, hydro bike, and beach cruiser bicycle rentals to the general public. For the pre-qualified individual they also have sailboats, windsurfers, and rowing shells. There is also an awesome beach area with picnic tables, barbeques, docks, classrooms, and convenient parking.

Friday, June 5, 2009

"RAMBLIN ROSE" Carson City, Nevada

Carson City was founded in 1858, by the frontiersman Christopher "Kit" Carson. President Abraham Lincoln signed Nevada into statehood on October 31, 1864.
Carson City celebrates "Carson City Frontier Days", June 4-8th. Hot air baloons, parade, music, car show and fun! If you missed it this year, check it out next year!
St. Charles-Muller's Hotel is located at 302-304 South Carson St. in Carson City.
The historic St. Charles Hotel once housed the occasionally dangerous, dozens of rootless and restless men. Revitalized within the historic district, the hotel and restaurant is a major attraction to this day.
Thai Spice Kitchen
Sushi and Teriyaki
111 East Telegraph Street
Carson City, NV
Phone (775) 841-8999
Within the restaurant, Thai food is located on one side and features a really yummy appetizer called the "Shrimp Roll" which contains deep fried Shrimp wrapped in an Egg roll skin with Bacon, served with Sweet and Sour sauce.
A Sushi Bar is on the other side, which features a made to order- all you can eat Sushi lunch for $15.99. The Sushi Chef is very nice and happy to explain the ingredients as well as make very tasty Sushi to satisfy your appetite. Although, they do impose an hour time limit to the "All You Can Eat" escapade. For almost $16, one feels that they must order quickly to get their money's worth. I prefer to take my time and enjoy the chef's work of art as a slow journey, rather than something that feels rushed.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

"RECIPE" Lime Marinated Flank Steak Kabobs!


This one's a breeze! Fabulous Flank Steak Kabobs Marinated in Lime!

Flank Steak is inexpensive while the Lime tenderizes and packs a punch!
Ingredients:
1 1/2 lbs. Flank Steak
1 Tablespoon Crushed Garlic
1/4 cup Lime Juice
1/4 cup Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Black Pepper
1 tablespoon Kosher Salt
Directions:
Lay out the Flank Steak on a cutting board and cut into long strips, roughly 3 inches wide.
  1. Place steak into a medium sized Tupperware container and add all of the above ingredients and mix well.
  2. Refrigerate overnight.
  3. Prior to cooking, remove the Flank Steak from the fridge and weave the meat lengthwise onto a skewer. Drizzle more Olive Oil onto the meat and let it rest on the counter for 30 minutes. Preheat your grill to high.
  4. Lay kabobs across your grill and allow to cook 3-4 minutes on each side.

"STORY TIME" Happy Anniversary!

Like many, I was married in June. Like many, I had no idea what to get my hubby for our anniversary! Since he had done the job of wooing me with roses for so long, I thought I would return the favor.

His only hint was that it was "One of a kind" and it's true. I gave my idea to a local artist and he made this wonderful garden ornament! Best of all, my hubby is "One of a kind", too!

"GOOD STUFF" From The Heart Production!

For a gift, or for yourself, if your are looking for something unique and wonderful, look no further than From The Heart Production!

Walking along the Farmer's Market at Gossner's it is not hard to miss From The Heart Production's booth. Okay, it's not edible, but what they provide is so stunning, quirky and creative that whether or not it's edible doesn't seem to matter. It feeds more than the ole' bottomless pit (that they call my belly)...what they create feeds the "right" side of my brain- with art!

Mr. and Mrs. Olsen are a tight pair and semi-retired to dedicate the better part of their time creating fun garden and home decor. Mr. Olsen seems to see a vision in his head, from gargoyles to sparkly lady bugs, to dragon flies, and has the mechanical know-how, as well as creativity to put his vision into reality.

They also relish in the challenge of creating the vision that you have into to reality as well!

Don't miss their booth every Saturday from 9:00 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Mini-Cassia Farmer's Market
Gossner's Cheese Factory
1200 7th Street
Heyburn, ID 83336