Tuesday, September 29

Volunteers needed for the WW. Run

As the WW. Thanksgiving Race is shaping up, we need some volunteers to help us with this great local event.

The Date: Saturday November 28th
The Time: 8 a.m / 9.30 a.m
The Location: Rohan Woods School.

We need:

- 8 people to stand at some corner streets to direct the runners for about 1 hour.
- 2 people to work the Water/Food Table at the finish line
- 1 Photographer
- 1 D.J to play music
- 1 person to sing the National Anthem.
- 1 person dressed up as a Turkey -Costume is provided -

Please let me know if you can help!!

Thursday, September 24

Do you go shopping with your Hubby?

Next time I go shopping with Julie, I now know what to do to spice it up a bit...

Monday, September 21

So you think you know WW?

Two signs for the Hood.. Can you guess where I took these pictures?

Dog Day at the Pool - Part 2

Pictures courtesy of Dede Nigh.. Thanks Dede!!

Restaurant Review - FIVE

Let me start by saying that I will use some + and - to sum up the things I liked and disliked...

I + the fact that it is right of 44 in the Hills - really easy from WW.

I - the hassle of a no Valet Parking restaurant - OK maybe I am spoiled but if I go out, I really don't want to have to circle around the block forever to find a spot.

I - the fact when we walked in, the host was on the phone, the restaurant was 3/4 empty - it was only 6.30pm - nevertheless, it took almost 5 minutes for someone else to come and greet us. The host never acknowledged us nor put the customer on hold for a second to welcome us.

I + his wife who came to the rescue was extremely apologetic and tried right away to make us feel better.

The Menu:
I + the Wine List - concise, eclectic and with wines under $60 a bottle. I have been to restaurants where the cheapest wine on the menu was $70... hum hum.
I + the Menu - few strong choices, very informative description, plenty of ingredients coming from local producers (I am a big fan of supporting the local Farms)

The Atmosphere:
I - when I feel cold in a restaurant. Julie was cold part of the night when the AC unit was boosting some air above us. The decor is sober, the art on the wall is fine.

I + when you can hear and talk to each other without raising your voice too much. The size of the room is great for a nice relaxing dinner.

The Service:
I + a smooth slick service. Not overpowering, not intrusive and Five nailed it. Our waiter Josephine was all smile all night with just the right amount of T&L you can expect.
I + the fact when I expressed my love for Lamb, she suggested right away a special off the menu - Lamb Shank - without reading some cheat sheets.

I -, actually I -- when a waiter brings your salad or appetizer and asks you:"Do you want fresh pepper?". Here is my take on this. If I go out and pay for a dining experience, I expect the Executive Chef or the Chef de Cuisine to season my dish to perfection. I haven't had a bite of it and I am asked if I want more pepper? How would I know I haven't tried it yet + isn't that the Chef's job to deliver the right dish from the get-go? I loathe this question!

The Food:
The Sprout Salad was solid

I love Beef Carpaccio but the cheese on top was quite overpowering the dish

Lamb Shank - beautiful piece and amazing dish - Very earthy. It reminded me of eating Game or a piece of Duck Confit. Well done.

I like the idea of a tasting but I like it even more when there is an order to enjoy the dish. The theme was chocolate but one should be guided in how to approach the dish.

Very sober presentation, almost too sober. A dessert dish should be more festive.

I had a very nice dining experience, the place was busy. Would I go to Five again? I don't think so and here is why. Like Simon Cowell says on American Idol, I was missing the Wow Factor. It was good, solid but not great. Chef Anthony Davoti's food is well executed but although I love the Five's concept - to empathize the five senses through a culinary experience - some of the dishes clearly didn't meet the expectation set by the concept itself. Below is an example of a dish I had recently hitting the mark on all my five senses.

What is a Wow Factor?
Two weeks ago I had dinner at a small unpretentious Spanish restaurant in Queens, NY. The owner suggested the following appetizer: a Jamon Iberico - dry cured Spanish Ham - Black iberian Pig range fed and fattened on acorns in cork oak groves along the southern border between Spain and Portugal. The waiter brought the leg on a tray to our table and sliced some pieces in front of us. It was Out of this World.

First you hear the owner came to tell us the story behind the dish. HEAR
Then you see the tray coming to your table. SEE
You smell the acorn - most intriguing smell for me since the smell of a white truffle tasting I enjoyed years ago. SMELL
You gently grab some small pieces with your hand. FEEL
You are blown away by the taste. TASTE

Here you have it... All fives senses in action in one single dish... WOW!

Sunday, September 20

Hot Air Balloons over WW.

As soon as we spotted the first one, the word on the street was:"The Balloons are landing at St. Genevieve!"

It is 5 p.m, we jumped in the car and headed to the Church.

Wow the traffic was insane! Tons of Balloons Chasers out there - going all over WW.

None of them landed on the field at St.Genevieve, but we had so much fun with the families who came out there. Pictures courtesy of my cell phones.

Saturday, September 19

Going on a date with your spouse...

We all know a healthy relationship starts with a once a week one-on-one date with your spouse. It could be anything... working out together, going to the movie or a nice romantic meal.
A one-on-one is a MUST!! Don't let your spouse go out too often with girlfriends - who knows what is going on where the girls are out?

Or if you have a feeling she is obsessed with working-out... she is trying to tell you something!

Please, spend some time together away from the kids at least once a week...

And as we get ready to go out tonight it gave me the idea of bringing you my bad ass take on the restaurants Julie and I will explore. Most of you know how much of a Foodie I am. Quite easy to please, but with certain expectations regardless of the place or price of the evening.

Everyone can be a food critic these days but I will try to give you a different perspective than the boring ones you find everywhere. So buckle-up and check back tomorrow.

Because tonight we are on our way to FIVE on Dagett Avenue.

Friday, September 18

I know it's not WW but...

...I couldn't help crying watching the clip of freshman Matt Ziesel scoring a touchdown against Maryville. Matt has Down Syndrome. Please read the story below the clip before you watch it.

Below is a little write-up from the Ziesel family for those of you not familiar with Matt: Matt is a special athlete who has Down Syndrome. He loves football and has grown up in an environment surrounded by sports. His father is a coach/ athletic director, and all his siblings play sports. He grew up at athletic events, and has always been a cheerleader. He registered as a freshman at Benton High School -Saint Joseph, MO this year, and told his mother and father he wanted to play football. The team takes good care of looking after Matt, and he is still the cheerleader on the sidelines. He puts his pads and helmet on, stands next to Coach McCamy and waits for his turn to play. Over and over during the course of the game Matt will say, "Coach McCamy, I am ready! I am ready Coach!" On this Monday night coach gave him a chance. The Cardinals were down by a few touchdowns with 15 seconds left - Actually down 46-0. Coach McCamy called a timeout and asked the coach of Maryville High School if they could run their "Matt Play". It could have been a shutout but - He agreed and this is where the video begins. Thanks to Coach McCamy and the freshman coach at Maryville, Matt and his family will cherish his moment forever!

Got Moles?

After a month of truce, the Moles are back. Granted it is the mating season and I am an animal lover, but why in my yard? You know the feeling walking into your backyard in the early morning staring at the sunrise and suddenly tripping on a soft bump that turns out to be a Mole's Tunnel. Before you know you spot a 15 yard underground tunnel going across your yard.. and another one... and another one.

And the peaceful morning turns into hell. The Anti-Mole patrol came once already, charged me a substantial amount of money, caught nothing after 2 weeks of having traps all over the yard. It went quiet for a while and the Moles are back!

What do I do and who do I turn to? A guy like John McClane - remember the Movie "Die Hard"

I know I am not the only one having Moles in WW. How do you deal with theses Mammals?

Here is from Wikepedia:"They are controlled with traps such as mole-catchers, smoke bombs, and poisons such as calcium carbide and strychnine, which is now banned in Britain. Most common method now is Phostoxin or Talunex tablets. They contain aluminium phosphide and are inserted in the mole tunnels and turn to phosphine gas.

Other common defensive measures include cat litter and blood meal, to repel the mole, or flooding or smoking its burrow. There are also devices sold to trap the mole in its burrow, when one sees the "mole hill" moving and therefore knows where the animal is, and then stabbing it. Humane traps which capture the mole alive so that it may be transported elsewhere are also options."

It sounds pretty barbaric... What do you think?

Thursday, September 17

Donut Sunday at Ste. Genevieve

Just a reminder that Donut Sunday is coming up this Sunday -Third Sunday of each month.

The Men's Club will host the event this week-end so be sure to stop by and enjoy some coffee, fresh fruit and donuts with us. Because of his vast donutting experience, Dave Heger is the captain of the Men's Club Donut Team. He will be assisted by Dave Zwart and yours truly.

When you see me on Sunday and ask me to pour you a coffee, simply say coffee please... Don't phrase it like: "Hey, James I will have a Grande Latte Skim Moka Cappuccino Half and Half with no Foam".... I DO NOT SPEAK Starbucks!

Wednesday, September 16

Yogi - Dog Day at the Pool

Thanks Carrie Lewis for emailing me this picture from last sunday..

Let me introduce you to Yogi Lewis, the future Olympic Dog Diver.

A jump from the diving board, no less....

Wait a second, I remember that full extension... Yep, got it. I know why Yogi is so good at diving. Here is Jim Lewis, Yogi's personal trainer, during the Blue and White Meet:

Don't you see the similarity between the two pictures?
Just kidding of course....

Help wanted!

The past 2 weeks have been insane. Same on your side?? That's what I thought. Sorry about the lack of activity.

The kids getting back to school -

Trying to stay in shape as we get into the Fall -

By the way, we are moving forward with a WW Race on October 10th. Fun Run for the Kids and walkers and a 5K for the runners. WE NEED SOME HELP!!

Last night, Ed Crites and myself attended the board of aldermen meeting for the city of Warson Woods. The board unanimously approved the inaugural Warson Woods community run, to take place at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, October 10. With only a few weeks to plan, we have much to do. We will need 10 or so volunteers to help direct the race. We need to publicize the event. Decisions have to be made regarding a name, a fee, prizes, etc. An organizational meeting will be held at 7:00 p.m., Thursday, September 17 at Ed's house. Let me know if you can attend and want to be part of this wonderful WW Event!!

Friday, September 4

Final week-end for the WWSC Pool...

But if you are a dog or a monkey -I have yet to see one in WW - you can come back and swim at your leisure on September 12Th for Dog Day!

I don't know about you but I think this summer turned out to be a great one for all the Pool Members. I was thrilled to see all these new faces meshing so well with the old ones - old in a sense of "I have been a resident in WW for quite a while".

The Swim Team led by John Rawlings, Karen Kruger and Michele Munson did a phenomenal job with our kids. John, I will miss your daily emails this fall & winter!

I am very proud of our lifeguards. They did so well and contributed in a lot of positive ways.

Kudos to the Pool Board Members for the hard work they put in this 2009 season.

And of course a special thank to all of you who joined and supported the Warson Woods Swim Club.

Please feel free to share your thoughts with me as the Pool Board will get right back to work to prepare for the 2010 season.

Although Palm Tree, sand and boats are not an option for next year...Wow, how many lifeguards do you need for the biggest swimming pool in the world? see below...

Thursday, September 3

I know it is not WW but...

... it is the picture everyone is talking about!

(Glamour - September Issue p.194)

Props to Glamour Magazine to come up with a picture of a... a real woman - Lizzie Miller - to illustrate an article about "feeling comfortable in your skin".

Finally a Model who is real, happy, confident and who looks like most women look in their undies. How refreshing!

Not a picture of these airbrushed, zero body fat with washboard abs Models that are a complete turn-off for men. Guys, if you like a six-pack on a woman, I suspect you would secretly like to bat for the other team, if you know what I mean!

To the contrary, this picture is a celebration of life in my opinion.

By the way I just read this on the New York Post:
"GLAMOUR will feature a slew of large, nude models in the November issue. Insiders say Glamour readers responded so well to the photo of plus-size model Lizzie Miller, posing nude, on Page 194 of the September issue, the editors decided to do it again. Miller, along with fellow full-figured femmes Kate Dillon, Jennie Runk, Amy Lemons, Crystal Renn, Ashley Graham and Anansa Sims, were photographed-- in the buff -- by Matthias Vriens Friday at Industria Superstudio on Washington Street."

How do you feel when you look at this picture?