We’ve Been Distracted

Life, work and a big ol’ move have kept us pretty busy the past few months! We’ll post more, but for now, here is a photo of the living room in our new house. We have a lot of work to do but we just love it!

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Basque Style Cheesecake

This is delightful, decadent and delicious and 100% from King Arthur Baking. We added some fruit as a topping which really knocked it out of the park, but their recipe was spot-on.

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Quiche

Oh man, do we love a gooey, salty and warm ham quiche for Sunday brunch! It’s so simple and feels very upscale. Serve the leftovers with a salad later in the week for an awesome lunch.

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Crusty No-Knead Bread

For carb lovers out there, the Holy Grail of bread is flavorful, toothy, crusty bread. Well, here’s your grail – a very simple and easy bread recipe that will change the way you think about baking. The two keys here are not getting the water too hot (it’ll kill the yeast) and remembering to whip up the dough the night before.

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Chicken Lettuce Wraps

This is a recipe that has so much potential for variation… of ingredients and wine! You’ll notice only the Kick Ass sauce has measurements. Put in more of what you love and less of what you don’t.

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Paul Watches Movies

It’s no mistake that I’ve always been a movie geek. Every Friday in high school we’d head down to the Pickwick Theatre for whatever was showing. When you could rent VHS movies, I became addicted, especially when I lived alone in downtown Chicago – it was my main form of escape. Now, Susan and I look forward to our Sunday matinee in front of our widescreen TV at home.

When done right, a movie is an experience like no other – it can affect you in so many ways, from the plotting to the acting to the writing to the beautiful images and incredible places it takes you.

As a cool little side note, my maternal grandfather started working at Kodak in Rochester, NY in 1910 when he was only 13 years old. He started out as a “sweeper boy” in the Kodak fire department. Everything he learned, he learned on the job and when he retired in the 1970s, he was designing and repairing the big commercial movie developing machines. So I guess movies are in my blood.

The list below reflects about thirty-plus years of serious movie watching, but all the movies aren’t serious – far from it. It doesn’t cover every movie I’ve loved, but rather the ones that have remained burned in my mind’s eye as something truly amazing to see.

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester

Apocalypse Now (1979) *
Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall

Arrival (2016)
Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Forest Whitaker

Baby Driver (2017)
Ansel Elgort, Jon Bernthal, Jon Hamm

The Big Sleep (1946)
Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall

Blade Runner (1982) *
Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young

The Blues Brothers (1980)
John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Cab Calloway

Bridesmaids (2011)
Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Rose Byrne

The Cabin in the Woods (2012)
Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Anna Hutchison

The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (1989)
Richard Bohringer, Michael Gambon, Helen Mirren

District 9 (2009)
Sharlto Copley, David James, Jason Cope

Django Unchained (2012)
Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, Sterling Hayden

Ex Machina (2014)
Alicia Vikander, Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac

Fargo (1996)
William H. Macy, Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi

Gladiator (2000)
Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen

The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Ralph Fiennes, F. Murray Abraham, Mathieu Amalric

The Godfather: Part II (1974)
Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Robert Duvall

Harold and Maude (1971)
Ruth Gordon, Bud Cort, Vivian Pickles

The Iron Giant (1999)
Eli Marienthal, Harry Connick Jr., Jennifer Aniston

Iron Man (2008)
Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Terrence Howard

It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)
James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore

A Knight’s Tale (2001)
Heath Ledger, Mark Addy, Rufus Sewell

Léon: The Professional (1994)
Jean Reno, Gary Oldman, Natalie Portman

The Long Goodbye (1973)
Elliott Gould, Nina van Pallandt, Sterling Hayden

Lost in Translation (2003) *
Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson, Giovanni Ribisi

Mad Max: Fury Road (2015) *
Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult

Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle

My Dinner with Andre (1981)
Wallace Shawn, Andre Gregory

O Lucky Man! (1973) *
Malcolm McDowell, Ralph Richardson, Rachel Roberts

Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)
Ivana Baquero, Ariadna Gil, Sergi López

The Princess Bride (1987)
Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Robin Wright

Pulp Fiction (1994)
John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson

Rogue One (2016)
Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Alan Tudyk

Shaun of the Dead (2004)
Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Kate Ashfield

The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, Bob Gunton

Snowpiercer (2013)
Chris Evans, Jamie Bell, Tilda Swinton

Spider-Man 2 (2004)
Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Alfred Molina

Stop Making Sense (1984)
Talking Heads

Streets of Fire (1984)
Michael Paré, Diane Lane, Rick Moranis

The Thin Man (1934)
William Powell, Myrna Loy, Maureen O’Sullivan

True Stories (1986)
David Byrne, John Goodman

Unforgiven (1992)
Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Morgan Freeman

Whiplash (2014)
Miles Teller, J.K. Simmons, Melissa Benoist

Wonder Woman (2017)
Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright

Young Frankenstein (1974)
Gene Wilder, Madeline Kahn, Marty Feldman

Zombieland (2009)
Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, Woody Harrelson

* – Movies about which I have said “Wow, this is the best movie I’ve ever seen!” at one time.

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