Tuesday, March 31, 2009


We had some excitement here last night.

A large brush fire kept crews from multiple Dakota County agencies occupied for nearly three hours Monday evening by the river bottoms near Interstate 494 and Minnesota 13 in Eagan. Emergency services received initial calls at 4:15 p.m., according to 911 dispatchers at the Dakota Communications Center. Crews put the blaze out by 7 p.m. No cause was immediately reported.

Here's how it looked from our living room window. As always, click on the picture to see the large size.

At the worst of it, the fires were spread out in a line that was almost parallel to I-494 there in the background. It was impressive, especially when the wind gusted and sent the flames roaring up. But did I get any pictures at that point? Nooo, because I was too busy picking my jaw up off the floor -- and wondering uneasily if maybe I should get a few Important things ready to grab and go -- to even remember that I had a camera. (Perhaps I should cross "photojournalism" off my list of potential careers.)

It was almost out by this point.

Shortly after this shot, it was all over.

Things still smell a bit smoky this morning and I'm sure that the critters that live down there are none too pleased about this, but the affected area is a relatively tiny portion of the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge, and no one was hurt. Whatever the cause*, it could have been a lot worse. That storm they predicted has started in earnest, otherwise I'd be tromping down there this morning to check it out up close. Perhaps tomorrow.

*My money's on some idiot out for a hike who chucked a cigarette butt into the brush.

More fun with flowers in the early morning light

They're all done blooming now (and looking sad and pathetic), but it was fun while it lasted. And my own flowers should be starting to come up soon...I hope...
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Saturday, March 21, 2009

BSG series finale

Mostly, I liked it. I didn't love it, and there was too much deus ex machina for my taste, but overall, it was okay.

Starbuck's ending, though? Without going into spoiler-y details, that was a major fail for me. All this angst and who am I, what am I...for that? Grrr. Argh. Grrr.

If you watch BSG and disagree, tell me why I'm wrong in the comments. Convince me. Make me LOVE this character's ending. I double dog dare you.


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hungry for color

The snow's almost all gone (for the moment; here's hoping that we don't get another winter blast), but everything's brown and dreary.

Fortunately, while I wait for the real thing, I can have a little bit of spring inside.

That'll do.

Friday, March 13, 2009


We've given up meat for Lent, for a variety of reasons. To my surprise -- for while I have strong vegetarian leanings, I also consider myself a happy omnivore -- I don't miss meat at all. And after reading this article about hog farms and the possible link to MRSA, and then watching this clip about a restaurant that serves ginormous portions of steak and chicken fried bacon, I actually feel a little nauseous.

Could giving up meat for Lent have the unintended effect of turning me into a full-time vegetarian?

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Slap in the face

I went for a run this morning. This is not noteworthy. It was -5F. And this would not be noteworthy either, except...

...it's March, and this is not how one should look after a run in March. Gorram it. Snow, snow in March, I expect. But this cold? No. Fie on you, arctic air! Go back to Canada where you belong and stay there.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Random picture

November, 2008. My mother-in-law asked me to take a family portrait.

I don't think this was quite what she had in mind.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Baking, baking, and more baking

We went on a mini baking binge this week.

Wednesday, I made whole wheat apple-nut muffins:

in addition to our usual bread.

(That's a lentil soup in the crockpot for that night's dinner. Soup and fresh-baked bread. Yum.)

This morning, Morgan had a hankering to make something, so she went through my cookbooks and settled on a raisin-spice coffee cake with a powdered sugar icing. She made the whole thing all by herself. As I said in an earlier post, this kid is becoming quite the little baker. It's also a lovely treat to have someone else make breakfast, so I'm doing all that I can do encourage her. =D

She cut into it and served it up so quickly that I didn't have a chance to get a "before" shot, just a remnants shot.

Nom nom nom.

Thanks, Mo! It was delicious!