Saturday, May 29, 2010

Memorial Day

Folks, just a reminder, this coming Monday (the 31st of May) is Memorial Day.


Raise a flag...

Tip a glass...

Bow a head...

Say a prayer...

...or just take a moment to remember all of those who came before us without whom we would not have the blessings and benefits we have today.

And please, have a safe and happy holiday weekend!

Friday, May 28, 2010

German Pancakes...MMmmmmm!

Who knew that German Pancakes (a.k.a. "Dutch Babies") originated in the Pacific NorthWest!? Apparently, according to Wikipedia, this is true.

German Pancakes have been a staple of the "Flaming Family" diet ever since my sister brought the recipe home from her High School Homec/Cooking class 30-some-odd years ago (back in the day when they "taught" housewife skills in school).


Our Flaming Family "Secret" German Pancake Recipe:

German Pancakes (a.k.a. “Dutch Babies”)

  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup half-n-half
  • ½ cup flour sifted
  • ½ tsp salt

Mixing Instructions:

Mix the above ingredients into a blender, Kitchen Aide with wire whip, or food processor with wire whip. Blend/Mix on high for approximately 3 minutes or so making certain that all of the ingredients get mixed together. If using a blender, make sure not to run the blender much longer than 3 minutes and to remove the container when done blending as the hot motor will make the batter rise – which can be disastrous if you have a full blender.

Add about 1 TBSP of butter in pie plates for 45 – 60 seconds before pouring batter into pie plates. Make sure not to burn the butter. Margarine can be used in place of butter and doesn’t burn as easily. Its recommend to not use lard (such as Crisco) as the Margarine/Butter also adds much needed flavor.

Cooking Instructions:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Add about ¾ Cup to 1¼ Cup of batter per pie plate (depending on size of plate) after butter has melted. Cook for about 10 minutes. Keep an eye on the Pancakes to make sure the top edges are not getting burned. You may need to adjust the time and/or temperature to get them to rise to your liking.


Powdered sugar and fresh squeezed lemons are a standard and excellent. Other fruit can be used such as most any berry (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, etc.), bananas, watermelon, etc. Tart berries such as strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries taste better on German Pancakes when sweetened with a little bit of sugar to bring out the berry juices. Most any fruit will go well with either powdered sugar or whipped cream (or both!). Other toppings such as syrup or jellies, including peanut butter have also been used. I've also tried Fried Apples (made with Cinnamon, Butter, and Brown Sugar) as a topping - which is quite wonderful!

Serving Sizes:

This recipe makes just barely enough for two pancakes. If you want to make enough for four people, quadruple the recipe so there are enough for most everyone to have seconds. We can’t let the fruit go to waste! ☺

Baker's Note:

The recipe will not work with milk. It has been tried and the pancakes do not come out correctly. Also, I like to sneak in a couple of table spoons of powdered sugar into the batter to help them rise when cooking. It also makes the pancakes sweeter and balances out the salt.

It’s a messy job both in and out of the oven - but well worth the effort! ☺

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Using the Force...

After purchasing a new camera for our upcoming Italy trip (the old one, albeit a digital camera, is a bit dated and quite a bit larger), I thought I'd test out the HD video feature of the camera on my brother, David (who, by the way, knows a lot about digital cameras as he builds custom "wild game" cameras with autosensing features to take wildlife pictures - just ask him!).

So I video'ed David while he was putting in my new wine fridge....thinking it would be a cool test. Turns out it was a bit humorous.

Go here for the full sized video of David.

In case you're curious about the camera I purchased, it's a Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS7. So far I'm quite pleased with it's quality...and among it's many features, it even has a built in GPS to see where you took your picture!

Ohh...and Special Effects in the video are courtesy of my Mac. The camera is completely compatible with my Mac and there was absolutely no software I needed to install! I just hooked it up and my Mac grabbed the pictures and video.

Here's a picture from my backyard.

Terrie's Pianese

NOTE: Click on the picture for it's full size. Once the full size image loads, click on the image to zoom in.

Can't wait to post some pictures from travels!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Bejeweled 2 Records

Well, I guess I've not lost my touch on Bejeweled 2 since switching to a Mac!  ☺

Bejeweled 2 on Mac (full size)


Just to rub it in, though, here's my original high score from my old PC.  In case you can't read that huge number, that's 827,168!

Dean's Bejeweled Classic-Twilight High Score (Full Size)


Ever wonder how many hyper-cubes you could get at one time??  My record is seven!

Hyper Cube Galore (Full Size)

Anyone care to beat these records?

Saturday, May 15, 2010

My Wife’s Zuma Addiction

I call it her “addiction” because I know of no one else who has hit a score of over 1 million – and she just got a new high score of 2.4 million!

According to her, that was her first "perfect game" - no lost lives.

NOTE:  The score is posted in the upper right corner of the below image.
Zuma High Score

See if you can beat that!!

Ye Old Bag of Nails

No, I’m not speaking of any person here, but rather the place I ate dinner at Thursday night with a co-worker.  The “Old Bag of Nails” was decent food – the Club Sandwich was good and hearty, however I thought my Clam Chowder was lacking (maybe because I’ve had awesome chowder at home in Seattle).  However, the home-made Carrot Cake made up for it.

If you’re ever in the Columbus area, look one of them up (there are multiple locations).  Decent food for not a whole lot.

Breakfast of Champs

I know it's not really breakfast, so-to-speak, but it is a great way to kick start the morning!

Venti Iced Coffee, Four Shots of Espresso, Caramel Syrup, Shaken (not stirred) - times two!!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Gom & Papa are Posting Now!

So, this is Dean, but I’ve finished setting up an account for Mom & Dad to allow them to post here on the Flaming Family Web Site as well – for things like the Travel Updates which Mom & Dad send out (I posted an example here).
Now that their laptop is fixed again (something about being click-happy I think), I look forward to their posting of their Travel adventures!
Where do you think they’ll go next??
(somewhere in the South West is my guess)
Map picture

Just keep your eyes open for this thing in your rear-view mirror!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Computers Hate Me - I Hate Computers (Sometimes)

I think the little Computer Bugs are on the loose.  No sooner did I finally bring my email server up from the 4 failed attempts at moving it to a new Virtual Server Host, then my firewall's intrusion protection system went haywire and knocked me off the Internet until now.

It took me awhile to figure out where the issue was (only about another 8 hours) - and after multiple times rebooting the Comcast router and my firewall, I found it was my firewall not talking to the Comcast router instead of the other way around (usually the case).

Sometimes I just want to pull one of my brother's stunts from our childhood and throw a Rubik's Cube into the wall.

Wouldn't you just love to watch this thing blow up into a million pieces?  :-D

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Email Server Move Cancelled - For Now

Well, apologies for the email system being down for the last 24 hours.  In short, I was hoping to move the flaming email server from one of my hosts to another and the move has been giving me grief.

So, after the fourth failure, I terminated the move and brought everything back online.  Until I figure out why the grief on the move, it'll remain up...and I'll warn everyone next time.

Also, during the down time (about 24 hours), no data was lost and all incoming email was stored so nothing was dropped.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Computer Updates

Well....the mail server move goes slowly....(as my funds and resources are limited, I cannot afford a super fast data center).  It is about 95% through the move right now.  It timed out earlier due to the slow host I'm moving it hopefully it will not do so again (as I can only hit retry).

Dad's computer is looking much better as well.  I was able to import the image backup into a virtual machine, tweak on the settings a bit, and then get the system to load up.  Again, thank goodness I have a MacBook Pro - and VMware Fusion to create a virtual machine and dump the image backup of the system into it so I can tweak on it virtually without messing up the hard drive.

I've been cleaning it up and updating the OS with patches and all the apps with their respective updates.  To do this, I've been using Secunia and CCleaner by Piriform (short for "Crap Cleaner").  Secunia updates all of the non-Microsoft (and MS apps as well) apps in much the same manner as Windows Updates does - but better!

And CCLEANER removes all of the "crap" left over from updates, runs, etc.

I love technology....but I love it even better when it just works!  I guess this is why I have a Mac!

Flaming Computer Work

Well...the Flaming family email server is down for the moment while I move it to another host. I had moved it to a separate host last week while working on some lab stuff but it's poor performance demands I put it back.

So, please be patient while it is moved back to it's original host.  It should be done in a couple of hours.

In the mean time, I'm attempting to repair my Dad's laptop - turns out something hosed up the drive partitions.  Fortunately, I was able to get in and backup all of the data (so it seems).  Right now, I'm attempting to restore the backup of the data to a virtual machine so I can work at repairing it and then image that repaired virtual machine back over to the original hard drive.

All repairs are underway....but just moving slowly.  Thank goodness I run a Mac!  ;-)

Anyways, please be patient while repairs/maintenance is in progress.