Friday, September 28, 2012

The Baltimore Centennial Homes

In what I kind of think is the circle of life, people buy a home, raise their families there, and then when their kids are grown the kids move out and start the process over again. It is rare to find a home that is passed on from generation to generation. The Baltimore Heritage Foundation however, started a program to try and find families in Baltimore that have lived in the same home for 100 years or more. Cool enough as it is, but even cooler is we knew someone who lived in a Centennial Home!

Barbara is a woman that used to work with me, she has since retired. She is an amazing lady who is very active in the Baltimore community and we could not be more lucky to have met her. She shared our wedding day with us, I have driven her down to the beach, shared a few beers with her and this past Christmas we took her to the Irish Tenors when they were here in Baltimore.

But I digress. I had heard through work that Barbara's home was going to be dedicated this fall, and I made sure that we would be able to be there to share the day. There was a block party on her street in Canton (neighborhood of Baltimore), and many there to help celebrate. Above is the plaque that has been affixed to the front of her house.

Barbara's grandparents bought the house in 1912 when it was first built, her mother remained there when she was married and raised her kids there, and then Barbara has been there ever since! It was such a neat thing to share with the family, and I think it would be very difficult to find people who would be able to say the same thing about their homes! We did learn though, that there are seven other homes in Baltimore that are Centennial Homes! Kind of cool when we think about how when we bought our house, our plan was to only be there for a short period of time!

Thank you to Barbara for letting us share this day with her!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Friday Date Night in the City

Friday nights are usually not a night when we really do anything. Tired from the busy week and tired thinking about our busy weekend ahead. So this was a typical Friday, but we wanted to get out of the house and enjoy the last few days of warm weather. So... we went to a food truck rally in a park in the city.

Food trucks are big in other cities, like NYC, and are just starting to gather steam here in Baltimore. Thanks to some legislation to help them out, we are seeing more and more trucks and events to get people interested in them. Last night we went to a food truck rally in Swann Park in South Baltimore City. The proceeds from the event were going to the MD SPCA, so even more reason to stop by!

This rally had five food trucks, one dessert food truck, and local MD brewery Heavy Seas serving up beer and wine. There was a live band, lots of puppies to play with, beautiful weather and beautiful views of the city and the water. It was perfect!

We got there early and scoped out the trucks to make our decision, Tyler went for Koopers Chowhound and got a cheeseburger and garlic and truffle oil french fries, I decided to grab a grilled cheese from the Grr Che truck. It was on sourdough bread, so I had to!

Our grub! It was fun to eat delicious food out of paper bags and drink great beer out of a plastic cup. Something romantic about sitting on a park bench for dinner, watching the sunset and listening to music

Our view of the city. Under the highway is downtown Baltimore. Behind us was the water and an old train bridge. Couldn't get that picture because the sun was setting that way so it just looked like a big shadow. It was beautiful though, trust me!

The perfect Baltimore date night! Thanks to the SPCA for putting this on, hopefully you raised lots of money for the animals that are still looking for homes! And anyone in Baltimore, make sure to check out the food trucks if you see one. Better than even going to a restaurant! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Chefs Martin

Well I feel like I had to claim this personal victory for myself and Tyler. Now, we enjoy cooking, but don't really cook anything fancy. And if it is something fancy, it doesn't happen that often. And typically on a weeknight it's something quick for dinner before we are running off to lacrosse games, or doing school work or whatever.

Last night however, we must have summoned Julia Childs as we made a souffle as a side dish to our filet mignons. That's right our little inner chefs came out last night to make this beauty:

So let's see... two pans, three bowls, a baking dish and countless utensils later, we have this beautifully puffy souffle. High fives all around! We had watched Alton Brown on the Cooking Network one night talk about the difficulty in making a souffle so we were a little nervous. Didn't want to waste all those eggs. He said that a successful souffle is one that rises. But it only stays risen after baking for 5-10 minutes. Deflation as soon as we cut into it.

This was a broccoli and parmesan souffle, so a perfect compliment to our steak dinner. And even though it doesn't sound like it, this was calorie friendly as well (approximately 120 calories per serving).

Cooking miracles apparently do happen! Definitely going to try a souffle again in the future... maybe next time chocolate though!

Thanks to my co-worker Bart for giving us this baking dish since we didn't have anything that would work for our experiment! 

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Tunnel Run

Well, we did it!! We completed a 5k through Baltimore's Ft. McHenry Tunnel this past weekend. I have no idea how we heard about it, but when we did we decided it would be a lot of fun. I don't have a bucket list, but if I did I would have put this on it. Especially considering how much I drive through the tunnel.

This 5k would be Tyler's first, and my second. I shaved three minutes off of my previous 5k, so I claimed a personal victory on Sunday. It was a blast, and helped to raise money for Maryland Special Olympics which is a great cause!

 Now, I have to say, the tunnel was not as dirty as I would have expected but it was a little stuffy in there. When we exited the tunnel (oh I should say that it was one tube of the northbound tunnel and you ran south and then came back north to the finish) you could really feel the fresh air. It was weird. 

I highly recommend this to anyone in the Baltimore area next year! Now, we are looking for our next 5k to run. Tyler is on the wait list for the 5k that takes place for the Baltimore Running Festival in the middle of October, and I am already in the marathon relay (four legs between 5-7 miles for each one). But I am thinking I need another race before then... we will see what happens!

Photo Credit: Baltimore Sun

Thursday, September 13, 2012

O Baltimore!

Around this time each year (well since I have been blogging), I have written a post talking about how Tyler and I am enjoying the nice fall weather by taking in an O's game, and the O's are having a horrible season, but it's ok because we love watching them... blah blah blah

And each year I talk about how everyone in town is so excited for the start of Ravens football season so that we can watch a stellar home town team. Well... this year we sure are excited about the Ravens, but the Orioles are giving Baltimorians a reason to cheer again. (Twelve losing seasons, it's about time!)

The excitement in and around our neighborhood in particular has been palpable. Orioles fans took over all weekend, followed by Ravens fans on Monday night, and the O's fans are back now! We made sure to take in a few O's games, when we win the lottery we will be season ticket holders. When we weren't catching a game, we were hanging out at Ravens tailgates, and walking amongst the crowd enjoying the excitement. Now this is why we moved to the city! A party every night!

 Friday night's view when the O's took on the Yanks. The O's ended up losing, but we still split the series with them, so as the Yanks left town, we were one game out of first in the division, and still held a wild card spot. Also, it was an extra added bonus that for the first time in years we could go to the Yard and there were more O's fans than Yankees fans.

 Then on Monday night, the Ravens were back!! It was the season opener for the boys in purple, and while I didn't go to the game, I got to go and tailgate! I just can't do the night games. My bed was calling my name.

I have to say, this is the best tailgate I have ever been to. Beers on tap, more food than you can imagine, a DJ, and just great people to party with!

We also celebrated Art Modell who passed away last week. Art brought NFL football back to Baltimore after 13 years without it. This town loves this man. 

And to complete our Baltimore Pro Sports week, we decided we wanted to go to an O's game this week. We decided on Tuesday night (throwback prices, price of tickets were what they were when Camden Yards opened 20 years ago, so $8 for a pretty good seat). It was a beautiful day on Sunday, so we took the dogs for a walk to the stadium to buy our tickets, and then walked to Pickles for a beer before heading home. The boys loved making new friends and hanging out!

And the view from our seats for Tuesday night's game! And the O's won, putting them back in a tie with the Yanks for first place! The yard was electric, and has not been that way for years! So exciting!

We couldn't be more excited to be in Baltimore right now. As huge sports fans this is what we have been waiting for. Stay on the edge of your seats this October! It's the year of the Bird!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Happy birthday Tyler!

This is super late... but better late than never right?!

This year for Ty's birthday I wanted to do something different and super fun. We usually go out to dinner, I get him some Husky and Under Armour gear, we eat some birthday cake and call it a day. While there is nothing wrong with tradition, I am a big routine kinda person, I wanted to do something different this year. So a surprise party it was!

So with the help of my mom and some friends... a 35th birthday surprise was planned! I picked one of Tyler's favorite places in South Baltimore City, decided on a menu, sent out some very Tyler appropriate invites and let the rest just take it's course.

It was the perfect night with friends and family, a night that we will definitely never forget! Some photos from the party are below. Thank you as always to my fabulous friend Leah for the photos! She's the best if anyone ever needs a photographer for anything... checkout her page here.


The birthday boy headed up the stairs to find there's a party going on!

Time for some cake!

And one of the only pictures of the night of us. We were busy mingling with friends... they came from near and far to share this day with us!

 And Ty opening up some presents! What a great night!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Happy birthday Jackson!

Happiest 6th birthday to our favorite nephew in the whole world... Jackson!! We were sitting drinking our coffee this morning, and and talking about how we can't believe that he is six years old already. We are sad that we have to miss celebrating with him, but know that he will have a great day. Six years ago we got to meet Mr. J and now we are ready to hear stories about kindergarten and first days of school. Hopefully we will get to have some facetime later with the family! (Gotta love technology!)

Can't believe that it was almost six years ago and we first got to meet the little guy! I think it was probably one of the first times that either one of us had held a baby, and he didn't make it easy! But we were definitely in love the minute we met him!

And then five years later (this was our visit to Washington last summer) we are playing light sabers with Jackson on the iPhones. It's amazing how time flies!

Happy birthday J! Uncle Ty and Auntie Molly miss you and love you! See you so soon!