A new altar rail at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Nashua, New Hampshire

Since Kathryn and I spend a lot of our weekends away from Phoenix, it’s not uncommon for us to find ourselves visiting another parish for Mass on any given Sunday. It is far less common for us to visit the same parish two Sundays in a row, although that’s exactly what happened the past two … Continue reading A new altar rail at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Nashua, New Hampshire

The last bit of fall foliage colors in Ipswich, Massachusetts

Before leaving for this trip to New England, some of my coworkers asked if I expected to see any fall foliage colors. I told them I thought I’d be too late in the season to see any of the colors. As luck would have it, I was wrong by just a few days. A week … Continue reading The last bit of fall foliage colors in Ipswich, Massachusetts

Sunday brunch at Peddler’s Daughter in Nashua, New Hampshire

For the second Sunday in a row, we traveled to Nashua, New Hampshire, for Mass at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church. By the time Mass was over, we were quite hungry, so we decided to find someplace to eat near the church. There was an Irish pub a couple minutes away called Peddler’s Daughter, and we … Continue reading Sunday brunch at Peddler’s Daughter in Nashua, New Hampshire

A lobster roll with fries at Bob’s Clam Hut in Kittery, Maine

After a few days of rather dreary weather here in New England, yesterday was delightfully sunny with a light breeze and a high around 60 degrees. Kathryn and I used this as an excuse to take a drive up the seacoast. We started in Salisbury, Massachusetts, and made stops in Hampton, North Hampton, and Rye, … Continue reading A lobster roll with fries at Bob’s Clam Hut in Kittery, Maine

Remembering the hot chicken cutlet sub at Salisbury House of Pizza

Kathryn’s sister traveled with us for the first few days of our trip to the East Coast, and this morning we brought her to the airport in Manchester so she could fly back to Phoenix. After the drop-off, Kathryn and I thought it would be fun to visit Salisbury Beach for a walk on the … Continue reading Remembering the hot chicken cutlet sub at Salisbury House of Pizza

Flight to Manchester is boarding and a surprising sight in Charlotte

Our flight to Charlotte arrived early, meaning we didn’t have to rush between gates on different concourses. We also had some time to check out the dining options, and for the first time in the United States, I saw a Brioche Dorée. The Brioche Dorée in Montpellier used to be my go-to for breakfast on … Continue reading Flight to Manchester is boarding and a surprising sight in Charlotte

Getting ready to leave paradise for two weeks

Listening to the radio on my way to work this morning, I heard the weather forecast for the coming weekend in Phoenix: sunny with highs around 80 degrees. Turns out that’s more or less the forecast for the following seven days too. Sounds like paradise. Too bad Kathryn and I won’t be around to enjoy … Continue reading Getting ready to leave paradise for two weeks

Slow cooker Dr. Pepper pork shoulder recipe

A couple years ago, I noticed a bottle of Dr. Pepper in the refrigerator, one that had been sitting there for months. I don’t drink a lot of sugary beverages, and when I do get a hankering, I usually have a Coke or a Jarritos. I think the Dr. Pepper was left there by a … Continue reading Slow cooker Dr. Pepper pork shoulder recipe

It pays to have a backup plan or three when travel plans fall through

Kathryn and I have two weeks of vacation coming up next month. How we’re planning to spend those two weeks has changed three times in the past two months. Plan A: Learning Spanish in Mexico City Our original plan was to return to Mexico City for two weeks of Spanish classes. We had picked out … Continue reading It pays to have a backup plan or three when travel plans fall through

Boy, that escalated quickly. I mean, that really got out of hand fast.

After my last post from about 24 hours ago, it may come as some surprise that this post is being written from the couch in our living room in Phoenix while rain is pouring outside the open front door. Plans escalated quickly throughout the day yesterday. First, our planned trip to Prescott — the city … Continue reading Boy, that escalated quickly. I mean, that really got out of hand fast.

Safe arrival, nice dinner, and an early morning hike in Cottonwood

We arrived at the campground yesterday early enough that the ranger station was still open. That’s quite unusual when we arrive on a workday. Kathryn and I have a rhythm of who does what we we set up our campsite, so we had everything as we wanted it within the hour, well before sunset. After … Continue reading Safe arrival, nice dinner, and an early morning hike in Cottonwood

A very special Cottonwood camping trip starts this afternoon

To celebrate an important milestone in our marriage, Kathryn and I are spending three nights in Cottonwood this weekend, camping at one of our favorite Arizona state parks, Dead Horse Ranch. We’ll leave after work this afternoon. The car is already mostly packed. Only a few last minute items remain. There’s a slight amount of … Continue reading A very special Cottonwood camping trip starts this afternoon

This is most likely the closest I’ll get to Oktoberfest this year

A new German restaurant recently opened in our neighborhood in Phoenix, which is to say a seedy old dive bar is attempting to reinvent itself with ethnic food and a better beer list. I enjoy a good schnitzel as much as the next red-blooded carnivore — and who doesn’t like beer served a whole liter … Continue reading This is most likely the closest I’ll get to Oktoberfest this year

Foreign sources, redux

A couple years ago, I wrote a lengthy blog post challenging my family, friends, and followers to seek out reputable foreign news sources in languages other than English. After yesterday’s circus in Washington, I think it’s more important than ever to repeat my challenge, especially since I haven’t seen any English-language coverage of the spectacle … Continue reading Foreign sources, redux

Blog comments weren’t working correctly because I misconfigured Jetpack

A couple months ago, I added Jetpack to my self-hosted WordPress site. Installing Jetpack took what had previously been a standalone blog and tied it into the greater WordPress community. I’m pleased with how it turned out. This blog has gained some new followers, and at the same time I’ve discovered new blogs as well. … Continue reading Blog comments weren’t working correctly because I misconfigured Jetpack

Just a picture of two Sonoran hot dogs from El Güero Canelo, Phoenix

I’d been waiting until I have an interesting story to post with this photo of two Sonoran hot dogs at El Güero Canelo in Phoenix. However, after four months, I’ve decided to go ahead and post it anyway. It was Sunday, Kathryn and I had just left church, we were hungry, and we hadn’t had … Continue reading Just a picture of two Sonoran hot dogs from El Güero Canelo, Phoenix

Today I learned the word tempura is not Japanese

Today I learned the word tempura is not of Japanese origin. It turns out it’s a loan word from Latin, and it’s connected to a centuries-old Catholic tradition called Ember Days. This morning, I was up and out of the house early enough to get to Mass before work. I went to the traditionalist Catholic … Continue reading Today I learned the word tempura is not Japanese

Sunday morning sunrise hike at Pima Canyon in Phoenix

Kathryn has been petsitting for the past ten days or so at a home in another part of Phoenix, about a thirty-mile drive south from our own home in Phoenix. Last night we spent the night there together and woke up in time for a sunrise hike at nearby Pima Canyon, an area in the … Continue reading Sunday morning sunrise hike at Pima Canyon in Phoenix

A chill evening at Banger Brewing on Fremont Street in Las Vegas

Most of our weekend road trips to Las Vegas end with us heading back to Phoenix after lunch on Sunday. On our last trip, however, we had some business we needed to attend to Monday morning. After our huge lunch at Gordon Ramsay’s Hell’s Kitchen early Sunday afternoon, we weren’t in any mood for a … Continue reading A chill evening at Banger Brewing on Fremont Street in Las Vegas

Teotihuacan, our day trip from Mexico City in photos

Although many of our fellow Mexico City pilgrims had started trickling into town Monday afternoon, Wednesday was officially the first day of our itinerary. The first and only destination for the day was the pyramids at Teotihuacan, but this was a pilgrimage group, so of course we prayed first. And ate.

A beer keg urinal in the men’s room of Virgil’s Real BBQ, Las Vegas

It doesn’t happen often, but on rare occasions beer can open up opportunities that may have otherwise passed us by. For example, if I hadn’t had a second pint of beer at Virgil’s Real BBQ on the Linq Promenade in Las Vegas, I wouldn’t have had to make a visit to the men’s room, and … Continue reading A beer keg urinal in the men’s room of Virgil’s Real BBQ, Las Vegas