Terra Nomad

Every day is like survival. You're my lover, not my rival.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Damn Good Food

Ever eaten at Hell's Kitchen in Minneapolis or Duluth? The chef and owner Mitch Omer has written a recipe book that comes out on October 1st. My favorite is the Mahnomin Porridge, mmm.

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Monday, January 05, 2009

Did you know

Did you know
Originally uploaded by soelo

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

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Friday, September 26, 2008


Originally uploaded by soelo

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T



Originally uploaded by soelo

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Yo La Tango

Yo La Tango
Originally uploaded by soelo

at barrio
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Originally uploaded by soelo

At Manhattan
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Monday, September 22, 2008

Chocolate Chai Latte

Chocolate Chai Latte
Originally uploaded by soelo

At Espresso Royale
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Friday, September 12, 2008

The Chill-out

The Chill-out
Originally uploaded by soelo

At Flame
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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

101 and 9 things update

9 things in 92 days - June 1 - August 31, 2008
2 Move - this is in process right now - I'll probably post about it when it's over.
4 Pass Calculus 2 - I got an A on the first of 3 tests.
7 Visit Science Museum - planned for tomorrow
8 Eat at Fogo de Chao - done on June 6th - the rolls are so good!

33 books
26. 'Under the Banner of Heaven' - Jon Krakauer

101 things
Make a scrapbook of all my travels - I have started, and I hope to be done with 1992-2001 by the end of the summer. 2002 was the first time I took a digital camera on vacation, so I am only committing to finish the trip from which I already have the physical prints. But, I also joined snapfish to get the digitals printed and am pleased with the results so far.

Make an informative opening page for soelo.com - I was working on a huge list of Web 2.0 sites as well as a nice dashboard for myself. I just put them both together.

Journalize my time from age 18 to 28 - I have been percolating on this quite a bit lately. I am thinking more like a timeline than an actual journal.

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Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Local Openings

Grizzly Coast opens June 7th at the Minnesota Zoo

Several Sonics will be opening in Elk River, Savage in August and on Suburban Ave in St Paul in 5 days!

The Star Wars exhibit runs from June 13th to August 24th at the Science Museum.

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Monday, December 31, 2007

Double O Seven

2007 in review:

January - I packed all of my possessions, got a new apartment thanks to Craigslist, and moved in the last week of January (movers rock). I also got Microsoft certified in Excel 2003.

February - I unpacked most of my stuff and started making dinner at my house once a week, starting with chicken lettuce wraps. I also got to go to a Minnesota Wild Game.

March - I started the month by booking my airfare to Europe in May and applying for my passport. The rest of the month spent I booking hotels and tours.

April - My grandparents moved out of their house and held an auction to get rid of stuff.

May - Europe!! But first, I had to beg and plead for my passport.

June - I turned 30.

July - I reread Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and the Half-Blood Prince and then read the Deathly Hallows. My niece and I hit Borders at midnight for the Deathly Hallows release party. I saw Order of the Phoenix at midnight the day it came out, and 3 more times in the theater.

August - It started with the bridge collapse. It ended with the first meeting of my Writing 2 class.

September - I met a guy online, started dating him and made him my boyfriend, all in 30 short, rainy days. We went to the Renaissance Festival on the 29th.

October - I visited Duluth with the new boyfriend and I transformed myself into Medusa for Halloween. My brother-in-law and I took my sister to see Jim Gaffigan at the Orpheum for her birthday.

November - I finally got to see MIA in concert at First Ave.

December - I stopped biting my nails. I used the method of wearing a rubber band on my wrist. It served as a reminder and on the few times I did bite, I snapped the rubber band. Lastly, I posted to my blog on 27 of the 31 days in December, which was one of my 101 things to do.

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Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Condiment of Evil

I am the one who hates ketchup and mustard.

My friends all know it. BBQ sauce is almost as bad. Mayo is acceptable,but horseradish? Um, no. I find most marinara sauce to be a sad, watery excuse for Italian food, but I hate ketchup and mustard the most. Once I was at McDonald's with my mom and we were grabbing food for a bunch of people. I reached for a straw or a lid and my shirt sleeve got a small bleech of ketchup on it. I was horrified, especially when I looked around the "dining room" to see there were no napkins in sight. I ended up using a small piece that I ripped off one of the bags.

My nightmare job would be to have to clean up or refill condiment dispensers. Errant globs of ketchup or mustard make me recoil. I rarely eat burgers, so I don't have to worry too much about ketchup, but many places have begun putting mustard on chicken and turkey sandwiches. Arby's is the main offender here, so now I have to ask the cashier what sauce comes on a sandwich. If it's not mayo, please skip it!

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Saturday, May 26, 2007

Italy Trip - Day Eleven

Saturday, May 26

I got a bit early to pack and headed out for breakfast. I sat at a table with some girls from Utah who were attending the cooking school and ate while the Sangiovannis came out and sat around the table. We wandered around Sorrento again, looking out on the Porta again and shopping down the San Ceseare. This time we tried some Limoncello, both regular and creme! We stopped for lunch and I ordered scallops, except I didn't. When my plate came, it was Veal Scallopini, I had ordered wrong, so we asked for some fish for me instead. If it had been just regular beef, I would have eaten it, but I can't stomach veal.

I had to catch the Circumvesuviana back to Naples at 4:39 to make my train back to Rome. So, we headed back to Sant Agnello and went down to the beach. To get there, you head down a beautiful but treacherous stone ramp that goes in and out of the cliff side until you finally are at sea level. There we sat by the bay and drank soda until 4, when we took the elevator up for 30 pence each and they walked me back to the B&B. After hugging them good-bye, I hiked up to the train station and finally understood that I had been getting lost because I was exiting on the north/west, not the south/east side.

On the Circumvesuviana, I was waiting for the Napoli Centrale station, but they announced Napoli Garabaldi and it looked like the right stop, so I hopped off. I was right, but I only had time to hit the bathroom and jump on my train. It was so much easier now after riding it twice before. It was a quick trip into Rome and a short walk to B&B Giovy. I highly recommend this place, as Giovanna is a great hostess, the rooms are spacious and sparkling, and the location can't be beat. It is literally 2 blocks from the Termini. Some places it is listed as Town House Suites Giovy, but be sure you are staying on Principe Amedeo!

Giovanna insisted on carrying my bag upstairs and she brought me water, orange juice, yogurt and fruit without me even asking. I watched Shrek in Italian before bed.

Day Twelve

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Friday, May 25, 2007

Italy Trip - Day Ten

Friday, May 25

I got a very late start today, waking up at 11 and not leaving my room until almost noon. I really started to feel relaxed in Sorrento, partly because it's hard not to chill out there. Everything is beautiful and the pace is pretty slow. I went back to the grocery store, got things for a picnic lunch and ate in A Lauro. I walked towards the coast again and hung out in a little park called Piazza Vittoria overlooking Marina San Francesco. The Via San Cesareo is a road filled with restaurants and souvenir shops, so I strolled through it on the way back to the train station.

It was only a 3 minute train ride back to Sant Agnello, but I got completely lost on the way back to the hotel. I took a shower and went out to sign up for dinner. Mami Camilla has a cooking school attached that offers dinner in the evening for guests. As I walked through the garden to sign up, I saw a very large Corso Mastiff named Spagi and a little Chihuahua named Lola. It was about 4 pm and dinner was not until 8, so I had some snacks and did puzzles in the common area of the hotel and then went for a nap. I slept for almost two hours and woke just in time for dinner.

I sat at a table with seven other people, five of whom were a family from New Jersey travelling together. Dinner started with an octopus antipasti, a ravioli with basil and ricotta and bass with asparagus. Dessert was an apple strudel with pinenuts, which I am allergic to, but I picked them off. The family, the Sangiovannis, invited me to walk down by the cliff with them. They had just arrived in town that day so I told them a bit about what I had seen so far. They started their Italy trip in Lake Como and had been to both Florence and Rome, so we compared notes on what we liked and didn't like. We had coffee and tea at a bar overlooking the bay and hung out on the hotel roof and garden until about 2am.

Day Eleven

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Italy Trip - Day Nine

Thursday, May 24th

After breakfast at my hotel and watching a little bit of Dukes of Hazzard in Italian, I packed everything and headed to the Santa Maria Novella train station. There I bought a map of Naples and a book of short stories by Jennifer Weiner. I got some pizza before getting on the train and realized how much easier it was the second time. Basically, try to get on the right car and listen to the announcements, since they repeat most of them in English. My train was direct to Naples, but stopped at Roma Termini, where it reversed so that I was facing forward and saw quite a few mountains on the east side of the tracks. It started to get very foggy and the sky turned stormy as we neared Naples. When we arrived at Napoli Centrale, I bought my Naples to Rome ticket for Saturday. I bought it for 6:30pm, since it was only an hour and a half back to Rome and I figured I'd want to spend time in Naples before I left.

As I headed down to the Circumvesuviana, the train that runs from Naples to outlying cities, I was expecting just one route, but there are actually six different lines! Luckily I knew my train's final destination was Sorrento, even though I was going to Sant'Angello. On the hour-long ride, I got my first tiny glimpses of both Vesuvius and the Mediterranean! I also overheard some guys speaking a language that I thought sounded like French until one of them said the Russian word for good (roughly "hodoshow").

When I got off the train, I headed towards the water and ended up making a large U through Sant'Angello instead of going right to my B&B. I didn't mind though, because as I turned a corner, I saw a breathtaking view of the bay overlooking Sorrento with a huge cruise ship in the port. Mami Camilla, my B&B, gave me a sparkling clean room with a queen bed. The whole Sorrentine peninsula has these sweet smelling flowers and the smell wafted into my room!

After changing clothes and resting a bit, I used the map they gave me to walk into Sorrento, veering left to go along Corso Italia instead of the road along the ocean. I had read about two places in Sorrento,
Standa grocery store and Pizzeria da Franco and they were both on Corso Italia. I found each of them, but I wasn't really hungry yet, so I kept walking through town towards Marina Piccola. There's another great view at the top of the road just before it starts to descend towards the marina. You can see Mount Vesuvius and look back along the coast to see Piano di Sorrento and Sant'Agnello. You also get to watch the hydrofoils that head out to Naples, Capri and Ischia. I walked back into town and past Standa, which was closed now, so I ate at Pizzeria da Franco. I ordered the provolone, walnut and honey appetizer and a pepperoni sandwich. They were both great and of course I had to have some Limoncello, since lemons are such a major part of Sorrento. I got back to the B&B pretty late.

Day Ten

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Monday, March 12, 2007

Did you know...

"If you ask for lemonade in a British pub or restaurant, you'll most likely get a can of 7-UP ... or Sprite"
via Metafilter


"While root beer is so popular in the US & Canada ... it is relatively unknown in the UK"?
via Root Beer in the UK

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Monday, February 26, 2007


On Thursday, I had a ridiculously good turkey burger, which I'd made myself! I'm not a cook, and most of my eating at home involves a box of something frozen or dried that I just heat up. But, three Thursdays ago, I decided to make some lettuce wraps before sitting down to the television marathon that is Thursday night at my house. I pan-fried up some chicken and my niece did the same with tofu. We had some cellophane noodles to crush up in our wraps (a la P.F. Chang's) and some peanut sauce and organic butter lettuce to keep it all together. We decided to make real cooking a weekly thing and made pizzas the next week. My white sauce needed more garlic and some salt (and 5 fewer minutes on the flame), and my dough should have been rolled thinner. However, the cheese and bacon I topped it with were excellent. So, last week I had some fresh ground turkey and threw in salt, garlic and herb mix and 2 crushed cloves of fresh garlic. I baked the patties in the oven for 10 minutes at 400 and then panfried each for 5 minutes on both sides. I put them on wheat buns with a slice of provolone to finish them.


Thursday, January 11, 2007

Barista? I barely know ya!

I was surprised to find out today that the guys on my team did not know what a barista was.
They range in age from about 24-45 and they drink coffee everyday, so how does that work?

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Did you know...

Pistachio nuts are highly flammable when stored in large quantities, and are prone to self heating and spontaneous combustion!?

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Wednesday, October 18, 2006

"Junk food may not only be making us sick, but mad and bad too."

So says this article in The Guardian. It talks about a study that gives aggressive alcoholics omega-3 supplements and has resulted in a measurable decrease in their anger. It also suggests that omega-3 deficiencies can cause or aggravate depression! Omega-6 fatty acids are taking the place of omega-3 fatty acids in many foods.


Wednesday, July 19, 2006


I have recently become a cheese snob. My favorites include Drunken Goat, Myzithra, Colby Jack from Trader Joe's, fresh Mozzerella balls and Cantal. I had a moment of Duh when I was wondering aloud what the green stuff in Sage Derby was and my niece said, "Maybe it's Sage?"

Oh my goodness - Amazon has a Gourmet Cheese section.

I remember Pinky and the Brain singing about cheese.


Friday, June 16, 2006

California Road Trip - Day 2

We had breakfast at Lori's, a 50's themed diner and then went to Macy's to find G some shoes and a hat for A. We then took the #30 out to the Palace of Fine Arts and wandered around taking pictures. We then took a #28 over to some bunkers on some coastal cliffs that overlook the Golden Gate Bridge. You could see a nude beach from up there! We bussed over to Haight-Ashbury and ate at Cha Cha Cha's. I had sangria and cajun fish. As we were wandering away from the restaurant, we passed a tattoo parlor and went inside. G and I spent some time trying to convince A that we should all get tattoos as a way to remember the trip. We almost had him convinced until we found out that it would take the rest the day to get us all done. A headed over to Alamo Square while G and I went to the San Francisco Mall. We didn't do much shopping, but I did get some cannoli at Segafredo's. Then we all took the cable car up to the bay and hung out on the beach.

Day 3

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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Let THEM eat cake, I'll be eating pie in the corner

I am not a fan of cake or it's stepbrother the brownie. Carrot cake is great, as is cheesecake, but the generic bread-with-some-extra-sugar that passes for cake these days is just not worth the fat and calories. Every time I am at a wedding, I am accosted by a pushy person holding a small plate with a slice of evil. If I politely refuse the abomination, I get a sneer or an eye-roll. I am chubby enough without adding to my thighs with something barely palatable. At the very least, there had better be some good frosting that I can nibble on to make the whole thing worthwhile. I know I will still get dirty looks because of the cake left on my plate, but the sweetness of the frosting will help me cope with the social rejection.

My disdain for cake started with the brownie. A brownie is often just a drier version of cake with less yeast and more chocolate frosting. Sometimes people try to improve brownies, making them "special" with the addition of a controversial ingredient. It adds a whole new dimension to an otherwise boring snack food, but it can upset and confuse people if they are not expecting it. So, be sure to warn people if you decide to take the leap and add nuts to your brownie recipe!

Pudding cakes are an attempt to alleviate some of the dryness inherent in cake, but it doesn't add moisture as much as another weird flavor layer. So, why attempt to improve on something that has outlived its usefulness? I say we push cake aside and let pie take its rightful place on the table at birthday parties, weddings and all other occasions that require dessert. Pie is so much more versatile than cake. You want fruit? How about two crusts? Can you handle three inch thick whipped cream? How about some weird chalky, but yummy egg whites made stiff and added to a citrus goo? Pie will give you all that and more. In fact, pudding belongs in pie, not wasted in a cake.


Tuesday, May 02, 2006


City Pages' annual Best of edition has pixel art by Eboy, which I dig.

I found this quote on a coaster at a bar, but I like it anyway:
"We do not remember days. we remember moments." -Cesare Pavese
I also like this one: "If you wish to travel far and fast, travel light. Take off all your envies, jealousies, unforgiveness, selfishness and fears."

Ever been mistaken for an employee while shopping? I have and it is hilarious.

Myspace is not just for 14-21 year olds - it's for me too.

Trader Joe's is "coming soon" to Minnesota, before the end of May hopefully. I was 100% wrong about the location. I forgot all about Excelsior Boulevard. Could they have built any closer to Whole Foods?

Also, the new library downtown opens May 20th, or for $250 (or more!!) you can attend the benefit on the night of the 19th. This includes a progressive dinner, and I really need to attend something like that.

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Thursday, April 13, 2006


One day they will lock me up and ask me what I want for my last meal. I will probably ask for an appetizer of fresh mozzarella balls, scallops in butter and garlic for the main dish and cannoli for dessert. Ever since I tried my first cannoli around the age of 15, I have realized the best dessert in existence does not even contain chocolate. I get my cannoli at Buca di Beppo (who's version is drowned in chocolate) or Lund's deli, which probably horrifies the City Pages food critic. She wrote a whole article in this week's issue about cannoli and didn't mention either one. You get a paragraph of its history, tips on where to get the best local versions and even how to order some on the web.


Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Eat your veggies, and your fish, too!

Because red meat causes cancer. But you already knew that.
"Colette Heimowitz, vice president of education and research at Atkins Nutritionals, says low-carb diets don't have to include a lot of red meat. Many low-carb dieters opt for poultry, fish, nuts and tofu instead of beef. To reduce the risk of cancer, she recommends that dieters choose hormone-free meat that has not been charred."