Saturday, February 28, 2009

Mrs. WYA! and our Pomeranian's antics have recently become fodder for the newspaper- not a real newspaper but via this website that lets you generate your own front page story.

Friday, February 27, 2009

We can't imagine that any of our readers think that we get freebies or perks from restaurants that we post about but, after this recent post on Feed Me/Drink Me, we thought we'd better make that clear so we added a couple of sentences to our profile at the bottom right.

New Neko Case on March 3rd but hear it now

You've gotta love NPR. We can't wait for Neko Case's new CD and are so grateful that NPR has the whole thing available to listen to on their website.

Well, how nice. We just read this week's Nuvo and found at that the Georgetown Cinemas are offering selected free movies for a week starting today. One mentioned in the article is John Wayne's McLintlock! Oh, Mrs. WYA! dearly wishes that her Dad lived in town so she could take him there for that.

M at the IMA

There's a great classic film at The Indianapolis Museum of Art's Tobias Theatre on Saturday. We watch M every year around Halloween. Two of the great things that it has going for it are that it is from director Fritz Lang and that it stars Peter Lorre. It's an eerie tale of a child murderer that is haunting because of the scenes that it shows you, like the mother waiting for her child to come home for lunch, rather than the ones it doesn't, like the actual murder itself.

The IMA is matching this up with a South Korean film also entitled M and calling their double feature "M&M". Aren't they clever? We guess it's a no brainer as to what movie snack to have with them.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Mrs. WYA! would love it if Mr. WYA! would start reading his favorite Marvel comics digitally to reduce the clutter of the paper comic books. There's a subscription fee to get access to thousands of comics online but here's a free one with Captain America, Spider-Man, and Abe Lincoln.
Attention all you fellow Chris Isaak fans: as if it wasn't exciting enough to get a new CD from him this week, he has a talk/music show starting tonight on the Bio Channel.

We watched Ratatouille the other night (that's right, we're grown people without children who still watch cartoons) and felt compelled to pick up a jar of Trader Joe's ratatouille. We just used it on a lazy night when we didn't feel like cooking. It was chock full of tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, onions, garlic and spices. We just warmed it up and put it on a bed of rice- very satisfying in its simplicity (and now we've at least tried what that rat was making).

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Puerh Shop

We have some of the best companies here in Indianapolis. That point was driven home to us again via New York City's Chinatown. Let us explain. Several trips to New York ago, we picked up a box of Goldensail's Pu-erh tea at a great store in New York's Chinatown, New Kam Man. We've been able to keep stocked up from our trips there until recently. We realized that making a trip to NYC just for tea was probably a little silly so we decided to see if we'd have any luck purchasing it online. Lo and behold we found a website called - who knew? We found what looked exactly like the box we had and it was only $2.24 for a box of 20 bags. This all seemed to good to be true so we had to click the "Contact Us" link to make sure it wasn't from somewhere overseas that would have a huge shipping fee. We were happily amazed to see that the address was right here in Indy! We placed our order and had 5 boxes a few days later. We were so happy to give the business to locals who are also Pu-erh fans.

By the way, this is kind of an earthy tasting tea so, if you like mostly mild fruity teas, this might not be up your alley. We, however, were beyond thrilled to find it without making a plane ride.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Thanks to Rebecca, we knew that a new CD from Chris Isaak was released today. We've already downloaded Mr. Lucky from iTunes and love it. We thought it was worth the few dollars more than Best Buy's price because iTunes has bonus tracks.

Another interesting release today is War Child Presents Heroes. This charity to help war-affected children "asked some of the biggest legends in music history to select a classic track from their own songwriting catalog, and nominate an artist from the next generation to create a modern reworking of that classic song". We particularly like TV on the Radio's interpretation of David Bowie's Heroes, The Hold Steady's take on Atlantic City, Beck doing Dylan's Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat, and Franz Ferdinand's Call Me.

Happy Fat Tuesday

Mr. WYA! surprised Mrs. WYA! with this necklace and bracelet to help her look festive for Fat Tuesday. He actually found it at our local Walmart where he said that they had a good selection of Mardi Gras goodies. You might want to take a look at their selection today (or see if it is on sale tomorrow for a bargain price to enjoy next year).

Monday, February 23, 2009

We love Kiehl's and we love simple perfumes available in small bottles both because the price is lower and because we like to change up our scents a lot. So, we were happy to read this blurb about Kiehl's $25 Essential Oils Roller Ball scents.

Sunday Brunch at the Garrison- Indianapolis

We finally got to Sunday brunch at The Garrison despite the fact that we live right down the road from it and are at the Fort Harrison State Park several times a week. It was a huge spread and pretty much everything that you would expect from a brunch buffet. We got there around 12:30 and the place was bustling. We didn't make reservations (if you go, you might want too since it is so popular) but that just meant we sat in the calmer ancillary dining room just across the hallway from the Blue Heron Ballroom where the food was set up. We actually appreciated being in a different room away from all of the hustle and bustle. There was a salad and fresh fruit area, a long line of the hot foods such as warm biscuits, sausage gravy, bacon, sausage links, macaroni and cheese, cheesy mashed potatoes, green beans, scrambled eggs, rice, ribs, fried chicken, Eggs Benedict, and quite a bit more. There was a carving station in one corner offering ham, beef, and salmon and an omelet station in the other corner. There was also a waffle making station. In the center of the room was an impressive display of desserts. You could come here, only have desserts, and still get your money's worth. Of everything we tried, we really liked the ribs, macaroni and cheese, fried chicken, and chocolate chip cheesecake.

We appreciated the great service from Mary who kept us filled up on beverages and cleared our plates. We also liked the piped in jazz music. Is it a trendy place for a Sunday brunch when you want to see and be seen and try the newest in molecular gastronomy? No. But, when you want as much as you care to eat of the classic brunch foods, The Garrison fits the bill.

($2 off coupons have been running in the Indy Star frequently so keep an eye out for those. Full price for adults is $17.99, children age 4 & under are free, children age 5-11 are .70 per year of age.)

Garrison on Urbanspoon

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Pathways to Joy by Swami Vivekananda

Pathways to Joy came to Mrs. WYA!'s attention through some yoga training but you don't have to be a practicing yogi to enjoy it. She simply found it to be one of the most inspiring and uplifting books that she's read. She is just now discovering Eckhart Tolle and there are a lot of overlapping themes between the two (even though Swami Vivekananda brought his teachings to the West around the turn of the last century).

Friday, February 20, 2009

Oh yeaaaaaaaa, here's a smooth way to transition into the weekend. Courtesy of NPR, you can listen to The Terence Blanchard Quintet at the Village Vanguard. Click the "Listen now" link to make your Friday a little cooler or select the "Free download" option and save it for a sleepy Sunday morning with a mug of steaming coffee, a comfy robe, and a chunky newspaper.
There are a couple of (free!) interesting things going on today and tomorrow. Tonight, the Earth House is offering a meditation with Felix Lopez starting at 5:30PM.

On Saturday, it's Mardi Gras Mambo time. Catch the parade in Noblesville or Mass Ave. or both. Laissez les bon temps rouler.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Indy Flashback... 54th & College

While we are mentioning the site where Fresh Market now stands on College Avenue, here's a flashback to 2003/2004 when Atlas and Cath were there.

Fun at the Fresh Market

One thing that helps us get through the second half of winter is spending those holiday gift cards. We had big fun this week at the Fresh Market on College Avenue spending our $25 gift card. We made a point of not getting any of our usual staples and just buying exotic things since they were gifts. We felt like we got a nice little bounty. We're sure that stores hope that, when customers come in to spend gift cards, they go over the gift card amount. We, however, like to see how close we can come to it. We only went .79 over which we though was pretty good. We got a couple of Root candle votives, spinach pancakes, gnocchi, some French bread, a couple of retro sodas (Moxie and Frostie root beer which Mrs. WYA! used to have with her Grandpa back in the day in St. Mary's, Ohio- we didn't know they still made it!), Aux Delices des Bois' Black Truffle Butter which is so decadently delicious it is worth every penny and every fat gram, a jar of Taramosalata which is a Greek style caviar spread that we really liked even though we aren't big caviar fans, and one piece of dark chocolate Lindt candy. We considered it a pretty good haul and a really great gift.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

When there's nothing on the radio but depressing talk and grating music, there's nothing like the sanctuary of 88.7FM- The Diamond.

Cornbread with a sweet touch

Even though we are now more than halfway through February, there are still some chili and some ham and bean eating days ahead of us. Here's the cornbread recipe that we use to go along with those dishes. It's the one Mrs. WYA!'s Mom has used for years but with a sweet little twist. We got the idea to lightly top the cornbread with brown sugar from a restaurant years ago and we've made it that way ever since.

1 cup yellow corn meal
1 cup sifted flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/4 cup shortening, soft
Dark brown sugar (optional)

Sift together dry ingredients into bowl. Add egg, milk, and shortening. Beat with egg beater (or large spoon) until smooth. Pour into greased 8" square pan, sprinkle top with dark brown sugar if desired, and bake at 425 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

This is the time of year when Mrs. WYA! gets excited about seeing the March Spring Fashion issues of magazines. After seeing this blurb about Harper's Bazaar's March issue, she was especially anxious to grab a copy because of the lovely cover with Sarah Jessica Parker on the Brooklyn Bridge. However, when we got to Borders yesterday, the cover looked like the photo we have here. We flipped through the magazine to see if that picture was on the inside but all we found was a minuscule copy of the picture on the Table of Contents page where it lists the credits of who made the clothes for the cover. Evidently, the pretty cover is only on the subscriber copies of the magazine and this cover, which doesn't even look like the cover of a professional magazine, is the newsstand cover. We thought that the magazine publishing business was struggling now; shouldn't they be appreciative that we bought a copy of the magazine at all instead of just checking it out online and give us the same pretty cover?

Bosphorus Restaurant- Indianapolis, IN

We've loved Bosphorus restaurant for a long time and, while we were having another lovely meal there recently, we decided it deserved to be on our W(Y)All of Fame. We are still struck, as we were on our first visit there, by how beautiful it is. We absolutely love how it is painted- the colors and the designs painted on the wood floor. We also love how it feels like were in a friend's home when we are there. Of course, the food is divine too.

We went for a late lunch but got there before the end of the 11A-2P weekday lunch special. We've only been there on the weekends before so we didn't even know about this. For $8.50, we got to have our choice of an appetizer and an entree from their lunch special menu. Mr. WYA! chose the hummus appetizer and Doner entree while Mrs. WYA! chose the dolma appetizer and Veggie Casserole entree. We went in thinking that we'd have to order the big appetizer combo for 2 on their regular menu because we can't go there and not have dolmas and their exceptionally good pita bread. We were pretty happy to have the lunch special option where we could share just a couple of appetizers. Mrs. WYA! was very happy with her light meal of eggplant cubes, peppers, carrots, onions, and other veggies in tomato sauce with a dainty scoop of rice on the side. Mr.WYA! enjoyed the doner special; a perfect amount of tender, marinated beef and lamb stacked on a plate and served with a little salad, some sauteed veggies, and a pile of rice.

Fans of strong coffee will definitely want to finish the meal with Turkish coffee.

Their website has their menu but you can click on the above photo to enlarge the weekday lunch special options.

It's just one of those places where you leave with a happy stomach and a contented heart.

Bosphorus on Urbanspoon

Monday, February 16, 2009

We got caught up on Top Chef over the weekend- go Fabio!!

Congrats to Taylor's Bakery on their pizza cone success. (and don't forget to keep Taylor's in mind for your King Cake- Fat Tuesday is next week)

Big Fun with Cirque Du Soleil at Conseco

We thought that we were way overdue in seeing a Cirque show so we made sure we grabbed tickets for their Saltimbanco show that was in Indy over the weekend. We absolutely loved it. It was exceptionally fortuitous that this show was here in mid- February because, as things outside look like someone turned on the sepia setting, we really needed to see all of the color that the sets and costumes had. Many of you have probably seen one of the many shows of Cirque Du Soleil, here or across the country. Mrs. WYA! has never even been to a traditional circus but she has a feeling that this is more to her taste anyway. The show started with acrobats jumping from pole to pole high in the air and then seemingly defying gravity by holding their bodies horizontally from the pole. Mrs. WYA! feels like she has a long way to go with her handstands because she still needs to do them by a wall while one of the performers here did it on his bicycle's handlebars (after he had gotten the bike up to speed and kept it moving). There were a couple of ladies who moved as one and at points appeared to stay on their trapeze by nothing more than the strength of their toes. Not to be outdone by the ladies, a couple of the gentlemen provided jaw dropping feats of strength including having one do a one armed handstand on the other's head! There was a comedic mime who got the audience involved (we're glad that we were out of his range in the wonderful Club Level). What looked like the most fun to us was the big swing that they brought out after the intermission. Several performers would stand on it and get it swinging really high and then fly in the air off of it. We'd really like to give that a try. We hope that another Cirque show comes back through Indy soon.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

How are you celebrating? We celebrated yesterday since Mr. WYA! works today. We spoke to the owner of Bosphorus and he said he was booked all day and still getting calls for reservations- that was good to hear. Have a great day however you are celebrating it (even if you're not celebrating it at all).

Friday, February 13, 2009

Yoga Today

Prefer to be in the privacy of your own home while you are in Down Dog or just need a lot of variety and scheduling flexibility to do yoga? Mrs. WYA! discovered the website Yoga Today a couple of years ago and can't recommend it enough. There are streaming classes from 3 different instructors. There's a new one everyday and they leave up the classes for a few days. Can you believe it is all free? The classes are really good too and at varying levels of difficulty. You'll learn something from each teacher but Mrs. WYA! is partial to Neesha.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

This is the 10th year of Saveur Magazine's Top 100 list and, this year, they celebrate the home cook. Take a look at their list to find celebrated ingredients, kitchen gadgets, pans, and stores (Jungle Jim's got a nod- we've even been there).

Paranormal Fest

On February 21st, there's a Paranormal Festival in Columbus, IN with an appearance by our favorite, Sammy Terry along with Wanda Lou Willis (the author of Haunted Hoosier Trails), and Sci-Fi Channel host Keith Age, among others.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Conchas at Mi Mexico Supermercado

We discovered conchas, a Mexican sweet bread, a few weeks ago when we were roaming a Mexican grocery in Phoenix. They intrigued us because of their cute shell shape (hence the name concha). We really liked them and were happy to find an equally delicious one close to home. Mi Mexico Supermercado has 3 locations in Indy; we went to the one on Franklin near 42nd Street. The whole strip mall looked new and nice and the grocery was well organized and full of friendly employees. Mr. WYA! found all kinds of goodies there when he was shopping for our Arizona themed Super Bowl dinner. Conchas are not too sweet and perfect for breakfast or a snack. The topper can be different flavors. We like the cinnamon one but this recipe also tells you how to make a chocolate topped one.

Mi Mexico

4240 N. Franklin Rd. Indianapolis, IN 46226 Tel 317.542.0834

7857 Michigan Rd. Indianapolis, IN 46268 317.334.0995

8170 E. 21st St. Indianapolis, IN 46219 317.890.8644

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Siam Square- Indianapolis, IN

We've read nothing but good things about this addition to Indy's Thai restaurant scene and we have to agree with all of the praise. We love that Siam Square gives us an excuse to go to Fountain Square. We love the bright, beautiful interior and we love the food. Breaking out of our typical Thai entree routines, we ordered the Drunken Noodles and Green Curry with tofu. Mrs. WYA! wasn't sure if she had what it takes to handle the medium heat green curry but she loved it. The curry had bamboo, green beans, Thai eggplant, and bell pepper along with generous chunks of tofu (you could also have it with chicken or beef). It's presented in a long bowl with a bowl of white rice. The Drunken Noodles were wide noodles with onion, peppers, basil and green beans. You could choose from the beef, pork or chicken. We chose the chicken. This dish came in mild version, so we chose that (some dishes aren't available with the mild option). This was a comforting and tasty meal that had all of the flavors that make Thai food so good without the challenge of the heat.

We also highly recommend a couple of their beverage options; the sweet and cooling Thai iced tea and the delicious Honey Chrysanthemum hot tea.
Siam Square on Urbanspoon

Monday, February 9, 2009

Zydeco's- Mooresville, IN

When it gets close to Fat Tuesday, our thoughts turn to Zydeco's. Mrs. WYA! got to introduce a gal pal to Zydeco's this past weekend. It was, as it always is, a great experience. You are transported to the French Quarter as you pass through the screen door of this old building on Mooresville's Main Street. The Abita beer signs glow, there are beads and feathers everywhere, and there is a generally festive ambiance, even when you go at an off time like 3 in the afternoon as we did. We happily munched on our French bread with the delicious house dressing/dip that is on the table. We both ordered the Creole- one with chicken and one with crawfish. As you can see, it's a huge bowl punctuated with the bright red tomato base filled with celery, onions, spices, and your choice of meat. It's what Mrs. WYA! always gets here and it never disappoints. Well, the one thing that was disappointing was that it was too filling to order dessert. One note, soup or salad used to come with the meal but now either one is $2 so that they didn't have to raise their prices. We think that is totally fair. We went ahead and got the salad but it is pretty basic; greens, red onion and olives. Basically, it is just an excuse to have something else to pour that house dressing on.

Another great thing about Zydeco's is that you get to leave with souvenirs. The napkins are wrapped with a strand of beads that you can put on and keep and you might choose, as we always do, to buy jar of the house dressing/dip to take home.
Zydeco's 5 on Urbanspoon

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Without question, one of the best gifts we received this past Christmas was a gift certificate for Kiva. We got to look through a list of entrepreneurs from around the world who need a loan and choose who we wanted to loan our gift certificate amount to from that list. We chose a lady from Ghana who sells onions and maize to support her 5 children. Once she repays the loan, we can then turn around and loan the money to someone else. This is our first experience loaning money through Kiva and we're pretty excited about it.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Is it just us or is there something imminently likable about Zooey Deschanel? We look forward to seeing her in 500 Days of Summer in July. The trailer is oddly dull but we do like that they don't give anything away in it. It's kind of a throwback to old trailers before they started telling the whole story in them. Here's a cuter clip.

The Chewy Brownie Cookie

We can't remember where this recipe came from but, when we want to indulge, these cookies always hit the spot. The original recipe called for the chips to be chocolate but we like to use white chocolate chips. Either way, it's hard to go wrong with this one. It's a good thing to make for your Valentine if you want to show some effort and save some $$.

2/3 cup Crisco shortening
1 1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1 tbs water
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups (12 oz pkg) semi-sweet chocolate chips or white chocolate chips

  1. Heat oven to 375
  2. Combine Crisco, light brown sugar, water, and vanilla in large mixing bowl.
  3. Beat at medium speed until well blended. Beat eggs into creamed mixture.
  4. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Mix into creamed mixture at low speed until just blended.
  5. Stir in chocolate chips
  6. Drop rounded tsp of dough 2" apart onto ungreased baking sheet.
  7. Bake one baking sheet at a time at 375 for 7-9 minutes or until cookies are set. Cookies will appear soft and moist- do not over bake.
  8. Cool on baking sheet 2 minutes. Place sheets of foil on counter top. Transfer cookies to foil to cool completely.
yields about 3 dozen