Nov 23, 2009

Oktoberfest Zinzinnati

Long time no post! I could blame it on being busy, but since my sister has 4 kids and updates her blog daily, I thought it best not to blame it on that. Instead, I'll go for just laziness!

So here are a few pics from the last time I posted. I had a conference with work that sent me to Cincinnati, Ohio. I talked Eric into joining me, he did not enjoy the flight:

But, once we landed, we were off to a fun weekend.

We walked all over downtown.
Buildings Downtown Cincinnati

Saw the Bengals stadium while they were practicing.
Aerial of Downtown Cincinnati - Bengals Stadium

And headed over to Newport, Kentucky - via the "Purple People Bridge".
The Purple People Bridge - Ohio/Kentucky

And, since Eric is part German, we decided to try out a cool German restaurant called Hofbrauhaus. This is our German sampler, featuring fried zucchini, soft pretzels, potato pancakes and sauerkraut balls. I liked the pretzels and zucchini.

German Sampler at Hofbräuhaus - Newport

And, this is Eric dancing with a German woman. I asked him what they talked about and he said he had no idea because she didn't speak English! Apparently she did a lot of "ooooohing."

I had conferences all day but we ventured out to Oktoberfest during my lunch break - the world's second largest Oktoberfest was going on the weekend we were there. 500,000 people in a 7 block area and our hotel opened up to the heart of it all! It was nutty, even at 12pm!

Some sites we saw:
Bratwurst at Oktoberfest Zinzinnati
Oktoberfest Zinzinnati 2009

And, the crowd from above:
Aerial of Downtown Cincinnati - Oktoberfest

I had a blast and I think Eric had fun too, just not so much the airplane part!

Jun 29, 2009

Our Kansas City Adventure

Eric and I took a weekend trip to Kansas City this weekend in search of good food and free fun...mission accomplished! As you know, when we go on vacation food is usually the main attraction so the hunt for the best barbeque began. I did a lot of research before we left and found our top two places to try. I narrowed it down to Oklahoma Joe's and Fiorella's Jack Stack, although Gates was highly recommended, their's is supposed to be more Memphis style so we nixed that one.

First on the agenda was a stop in Kansas City, Kansas at Oklahoma Joe's Barbeque. Anthony Bourdain (No Reservations guy on tv) wrote an article in Men's Health, "13 Places to Eat Before You Die" and OK Joe's came in at #13. He also stated, "It's the best BBQ in Kansas City, which makes it the best BBQ in the world." That said, we had to try it. We waited in line for about an hour, oh, this place was located inside a corner gas station, and the wait was well worth it. The ribs were the best restaurant/gas station ribs I've had to date. This place lived up to the hype. The other bbq place we ate, not so much.

My meal:
Oklahoma Joe's Barbeque Brisket and Pulled Pork

Then is was off to Kansas City, Missouri.

We happened to go on the weekend of an art festival downtown so we checked that out (free).

Then we went on a photo adventure through downtown. Eric in front of the AMC followed by the legendary Drum Room.

Drum Room - Kansas City, Missouri

Then we headed off to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (free). This place was awesome. You could spend hours in this place and not see everything. I'm a big fan of sculptures and oversized art, so I had a blast with the shuttlecocks!

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art - Kansas City, Missouri


We also did some shopping (not free) in the Crown Center and there just happened to be a LEGO exhibit going on so I had to check it out for my nephews (free). There were over 30 sculptures completely made out of LEGOS!

LEGO Brick Art by Nathan Sawaya

Then it was off to try the second barbeque joint, Fiorella's Jack Stack Barbeque. This place was voted Best in 2008 by I thought it was good, not the best. It was a fancy restaurant (nothing like a bbq joint) and had fancy prices to match.

Jack's Best - Fiorella's Jack Stack Barbeque

For our final day, we hit the Crown Plaza shopping district and picked up a new car.

Classic 1960 Corvette

Okay, we didn't get the car but the owner did let me hop in it for a photo op after he saw me through the restuarant window posing by it. (free)

So, if you haven't thought about Kansas City for a weekend getaway, I'd say it's worth the drive.

Jun 3, 2009

Fishing at Flint Creek

Eric and I took advantage of the beautiful weather and headed out to Flint Creek for a day of fishing. We caught crawdads, sunfish and smallmouth bass - it was a blast.

This is where we fished: (see eric in the lower left corner?)

A little sunfish


Me and my fish. I think this picture is funny because it makes my arms look massive, watch out!

And the snake with his prey:

The Snake Won

I wish I would've got a picture of the crawdads, but oh well, maybe next time.

May 21, 2009


In an effort to de-simplify my life (can you feel the sarcasm?), I decided to try to do a "sketch-a-day". I am almost finished with my photography adventure of a photo-a-day, today is day 357, and as I near completion, I decided to challenge myself with a daily sketch.

According to many people that do this, it's supposed to stimulate creativity as well as keep your mind sharp and you may find that you become a better artist after all's said and done. By definition a sketch isn't supposed to take more than 15 minutes so they are supposed to be quick and painless. I've decided to sketch something I come into contact with on that specific day.

Here are some of the first attempts...try not to be too critical, they are merely sketches (some colored sketches!)

Pink Beauty - 356/365

Morel - 349/365

Grow Local - 350/365

TOMS sketch - 351/365

May 12, 2009

You Grow Girl

I came across a really fun gardening site: Not only is it super informative, they also have a store where you can buy...wait for it...

That's right, Garden Hoe t-shirts. I need to set up a wish list on this site.

So, since I'm a girl that grows things, here are some pics from the garden.

Green's From the Garden

Baby Carrots - 335/365

And, totally unrelated, a photo of the Mother's Day Meatfest

Dad's Famous Grilled Ribs - 346/365

May 6, 2009

Spring Garden Salad

Spring Garden Salad - 334/365, originally uploaded by lesleyraez.
I love spring! With spring comes fresh veggies from the garden! Here's a simple salad recipe that's sure to please.

  • bowl of mixed greens (cut into strips)
  • sliced radishes
  • sliced green onion
  • shaved carrots cut into pieces
  • quartered grapes
  • crumbled feta cheese
Top it off with the dressing of your choice, I'm quite fond of White Balsamic dressing.


Apr 17, 2009

From the Garden

It seems all that early planting has paid off! We are now eating fresh salads every night from our backyard! We started all our greens indoors and then transplanted them.

Baby Lettuce & Spinach - 275/365

I never really liked radishes before, but I really like these pink ones.

Pink Beauties - 316/365

Garden Fresh - 321/365

Happy gardening.

Apr 4, 2009

A bowl full of morel mushrooms

A successful day of mushroom hunting. These morel mushrooms were found in Stillwater. Morel mushrooms are really tasty but hard to find. They only appear in Oklahoma for a period of about 2 weeks. They are often used in gourmet dishes in France but are also really good battered and fried.

Mar 29, 2009

Red Petal, Yellow Petal

Red Petal, Yellow Petal, originally uploaded by lesleyraez.

I'm playing with a new template that interacts with Flickr. This is a test post.

I've Been Out Practicing

I haven't updated in a while because I've been out practicing with the camera, and the weather has been much warmer later so I haven't been in the house. Regardless, here are some recent photos post-snapshops.

A Tulip out the Front Door

Red Tulip Capped with Snow - 303/365

From Everett's Birthday

Playing at Woodward after the Snow

Got Any Nuts?

Poppy Tulips

Eric at Woodward

Hope you enjoyed the snow!