April Photo a Day

Well, as suspected, I did not do as good a job with this month's photoaday challenge.  Such is life :)  However, here are the few that I did remember to do!  I will try and do better in May.


Day 2:  COLOR

Day 3:  MAIL


Day 5:  TINY (hineys)

Day 6:  LUNCH

Day 7:  SHADOW




Olive Stuffed Chicken Thighs

Really?!  Olive stuffed chicken thighs with crispy skin and potatoes.   That is all.

Olive Stuffed Chicken Thighs


6 chicken thighs (de-boned with skin on)
5 oz. green olives
1/2 of a lemon
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
2 tablespoons smoked paprika (make sure you buy smoked paprika)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 lb. potatoes thinly sliced (red or yukon, whichever you prefer)
1 medium yellow onion thinly sliced

  • chop up the olives and add the juice of half of a lemon and the chopped garlic

I mean, how could you NOT love this!

  • in a larger bowl add the olive oil and paprika (and as much salt and pepper as you want, however, remember there are olives in this dish so tread lightly with the salt) and it makes a paste
  • next add the de-boned chicken thighs to the paste and massage and marinate them for as long as you like (I usually do these first few steps in the morning)

  • pre-heat the oven to 375
  • line a baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray and spread out the thinly sliced potatoes and onions, or in our case since Kyle doesn't eat onions I spread them on half of the baking sheet, see below :)
  • take a cooling rack and place on top of the potatoes/onions on the baking sheet, add about 2 tablespoons of the olive mixture and stuff it under the skin of the chicken thighs, and then place the thighs on the cooling rack

  • bake for 60 minutes and then serve!

We serve this dish with a light and almost sweet spinach salad to counter balance the saltiness of the chicken.

Spinach and Strawberry Salad


baby spinach
toasted almonds

For the vinaigrette

1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon chopped shallot
1 teaspoon poppy seeds
1 teaspoon sesame seeds
1 dash/shake of worcestershire sauce
about 1/4 cup or a little less of vegetable oil
salt and pepper to taste

Welcome to Paradise

Racer Boy Ian and I took the short drive over to Paradise Valley for a little mountain bike action.  We hit this place last year and had a blast, with a vow to return.  Today was the day.  

Loaded up the race ready '94 Camry Wagon (envy of the neighborhood...) with bikes and gear and off we went:

The map to it all.  Place isn't all that big, but enough twisty fun singletrack to satisfy.  Met some nice guy in the parking lot, riding a sweet Ritchey 29er in single speed mode, and we all cruised together for awhile.  Why is it that so many cool nice folks, ride mountain bikes?  Must be a DNA thing.  I'll contact the institute for a little grant dough and we'll get to the bottom of this theory.

My trusty 29er rests against sign pole.  Too bad it can't read.  It can ride though and does that pretty damn well.  I've been using this rig for two years now, no complaints.  Felt great on the rooted out, muddy singletrack; which this place has in spades.  There's even a few wooden stunts to attempt, most of 'em pretty tame.  This park is really about XC fun and frolicking.

Ian balances small rocks on the giant, moss covered trail side boulder.  A fun diversion, complete with some Clif Bar chomping.  Another fantastic father/son day out, bicycles being the secret key to it all.

Ian in action, he kicked my ass today.  Was riding smoother and stronger then old bike geek dad, since I was dragging a bit.  Eventually all rides will revolve around keeping him in sight.  He gets older and stronger, while I get older and slower.  That's okay.  At 50+ years old, I ain't doing too bad.  I would guess in the general population of semi-old dudes, only a small percentage of 50 year olds are splashing through puddles on a mountain bike for 2 hours.  I'll take it.  I like not being normal.  Normal is highly overrated.  Trust me.

Fun ride with 2+ hours of cruising around.  We don't know these trails well, so some backtracking and doing a few sections twice (or more).  Wet and muddy, all singletrack, Roots-O-Plenty, tight turns and plenty of smiles.  Ian enjoyed hitting somewhere new for a change.  Me too.

Great place, we'll be back...

Mini Fiesta at School

At the boys school, they have a mini fiesta during Fiesta down here.  We were sent home again with this little note about the floats we were supposed to make for the parade that the 3-4-5 year old classes would be walking in.  Made me chuckle last year and made me laugh this year.

Besides the non-competitve parade of floats, they have games and prizes and nachos for the kids set up in the "gym" of the school.  It's a lot of fun for the kiddos.

His float, as we figured, it was Super Hero themed :)

 Best friend Jackson.

He had a meltdown and wanted to stay outside for about 15 minutes and wouldn't let anyone near him.

Just watchin all the fun from outside.

Coltrane's class next year won't take part in the festivities because he'll be in older two's class.  I'm not sure what Kingston's school will do next year as he'll be in big boy KINDERGARTEN!  We'll be sure to go to the Battle of the Flower's Parade since both boys will be off.  Happy Fiesta!


Fiesta 2012

Fiesta!  This was our first time going downtown with the boys and partaking in the Fiesta events.  Next year we're hoping to attend the Battle of the Flowers Parade (the kids get off school for that) and to go to some NIOSA events!   Here are some pictures.

After much needed naps we cracked cascarones!  Which they both LOVE.