Lemon Lavender Biscotti

I love biscotti…well I just love food…looking through different recipes  I was inspired by a lemon almond biscotti recipe on the  King Arthur Flour site …so I played around with it and made a few changes…and this is what I came up with


Lemon Lavender Orange Blossom Honey Biscotti

preheat oven to 350

2 1/4 cups of flour….I do love King Arthur flour but this time I used Trader Joe’s      ……………………………………unbleached white flour

1.5 t  baking powder

1/4 t baking soda

1/4 t salt

combine the above dry ingredients together and set aside

1 stick of light butter….I used Land o ‘ Lakes…softened

1/3 c sugar

1/3 c orange blossom honey

1 T lemon zest

2 t vanilla

3 T lemon juice

1 egg

2 egg whites

2 T dried lavender


so in a mixing bowl combine the butter and sugar……add the honey and continue mixing for a minute or two

pulverize the lavender to release the oils…I do this in a coffee grinder

add the lavender…the lemon zest…the vanilla …and the lemon juice….mix until well combined in the butter/sugar/honey mixture

add the egg…mix until incorporated and then add egg whites and beat on medium high for 2 more minutes


slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture…..the dough /batter will be on the soft side

line a baking sheet with parchment

with a rubber spatula…help ease the dough out of the bowl onto the parchment…and I then  flour my hands to pat the dough into shape…the dough takes up just about the entire length of the pan…except for maybe 2.5 inches on either end of the baking sheet

I then put it in the oven for 30 minutes after 30 minutes I take them out and let them rest

Lower the oven to 300 degrees…and let the log rest for 20 minutes…after the 20 minutes start slicing the log into 1/2 inch slices…I ended up with 20 cookies…large cookies…take the slices and place them back in the oven for another 20 minutes

take them out and let them cool


so while cooling I make a lavender lemon glaze…I do not measure when Imake a glaze…but I did measure out 1  T dried lavender buds…and again pulverized them in the coffee grinder…I then used roughly 3 T lemon  juice….and added confectioners sugar until I reached a consistency I liked…I then piped the glaze onto the cooled cookies

Biscotti are great by themselves…or for breakfast with a cup of tea or coffee…or a mid day snack with a glass of milk…no matter how you like them…they won’t last long and you may be hearing requests for….more ?


The table  I used to photograph the cookies is just a plain square raw wood table from Ikea . I painted it with chalk paint …I used the folkart chalk paint that you can get at Jo-An fabrics…..I used Java as a base and then painted patina  on top  …I then used a crackle medium on top that crackles clear and gives a crackle like you might see on porcelain…it was made by decoart…I don’t think I will ever use it again…even though I like the end results it produces….there are no warning on the bottle…but while using this …my tongue started to go numb and I started getting heart palpitations…as soon as I got away from this stuff I started feeling better…so after the crackle I started to distress the rest of the paint with just a wet rag…a little sand paper… a little steel wool…and then i finished it off doing a little dry brushing…now i need on figuring out how to seal it .



I Love Winter in Mid April

just a coating of snow this morning that did not last that long…but I enjoyed it enough to walk in the woods out at Boyce Mayview Park…took my little camera with me and got a few images on the forest floor with a bit of snow….if you dont like the cold…at least I hope you can enjoy the images…the cold doesnt bother me ….anyway

Martha’s Run 2018

Saturday the 14th of April…a warm morning upper 60’s at 9 a.m. …it was the start of Martha’s Run which has been going on for about 20 years now in Mt lebanon…also one of the smallest number of participants I can recall in a long time….maybe the Pirates run had something to do with it…but there is something I like about a community run…probably takes me back to my days of running 40 years ago…when there were a lot of races with only about a hundred entrants…those were the days…I actually ran in pittsburgh’s great race and there were under 5,000 entrants…I no longer run as my knees are not quite what they used to be…but that doesnt stop me from enjoying a good community run

This was a nice run…sunny and not too warm…with an unusual finish…Usually you have the overall winner…and the ladies winner…well it so happened that Larissa Park was the first person to cross the finish line…congratulations Larissa…and there was no one close to her at the finish . I wonder if there was a trophy for the first male finisher ?
Anyway people chatted at me or waved at me as they saw me on the side with a camera…they all seemed to be enjoying themselves despite the tough start . The first mile and a quarter are pretty much uphill…the only benefit to that is it is all downhill to the finish for the most part

Here are some images from Martha’s Run 2018

Alex Senior



Highlanders…Iron Maidens… and Celtics…makes for a fun day

Woke up to the grassy areas covered with snow…so that definitely meant it was time for rugby . The sad part was the snow was all melted by gametime…

It was a doubleheader as the Cleveland Iron Maidens took on the local Lady HIghlanders in the opening match .

It was a hard fought battle with Cleveland coming out the victor . But as my memory serves me when these two play each other both sides play very good defense . And that was the case this time as well . So just a simple breakdown could mean the other team scoring. And that happened . And Cleveland scored twice…maybe 3 times…but I always say the players need to know the rules so they can be a better player…well I learned something new…if a player scores a try and while doing so the opposition is called for a high tackle…there is no attempt at the 2 point conversion and the scoring team is awarded a 7 point try….Anyway the lady Highlanders got better as the game wore on and had some long runs that would be stymied by penalties or being forced into touch

That is something I dont quite understand….running the ball so close to the sidelines…watching the elite teams I always see them cutting back towards the inside to keep play moving along.Just an observation

Second match saw the men take the field as the Highlanders hosted the Toledo Celtic rugby football club…My eyes are aging…and no matter how many times I tried counting the players for Toledo…I always lost track…but I am pretty sure they did not have a full squad…at least one player shy .

This was a hard hitting battle…players lifting opponents off the ground and flipping them…yellow cards awarded….but the Highlanders scored first and while I was there they scored more often than Toledo did . I left with about 20 minutes left in the game so I really do not know who won . But if I was a gambling man…and I am not…I would have put my money on the black and red…they were younger quicker and faster . And they seemed to get along with their teammates better ….seemed to me the Toledo team had some personality conflicts

I had a good time…to me that is what counts…oh…and no serious injuries…that too.

Be well…here are some images from the day

Here are some eyes for you

Home Opener 2018

Pirates42Happy Tuesday ….went down for an afterrnoon stroll and a Pirates home opener was happening…just from walking around i could tell the enthusiasm and the attendance were both down…The pirates only had about 30,100 fans in the seats…yes there was snow on the ground when we woke up…but come game time almost all the snow was gone…a bit disappointing if you ask me…especially when the home opener was happening on spring break and most schools had the day off . I remember going to home openers at 3 rivers stadium…and the snow flurries were whipping about and the Pirates had better attendance then.

Anyway I walked around and snapped a bunch of photos…here are some of what i saw

Had a great weekend….

Happy spring everyone….well it is snowing here and the temperature is dropping…looking at 3 to 7 inches of snow…some are calling for a foot as the nor’easter tells spring that winter is staying around a bit longer

With this wintry mix in tow…I pulled ole Thelma out of the fridge and am feeding her…might even make a little loaf of sourdough in my enamel coated caste iron dutch oven…I have one from the pioneer women’s collection

Anyway I had a busy weekend…even though my back is bothering me…I went to see a splendid performance of Legally Blonde put on by The Bethel Park High School…my favorite songs were Omy God You Guys…and there , right There…which many people calll…Gay or European…politically incorrect but soooooo funny

Back was still an issue in the morning but I put some of those therma wraps on both sides of my lower back…it loosened things up enough for me to go down to the St paddy’s Day Parade…I only stayed for about an hour…and then went to an amateur hockey game…that was plenty…rolled on the foam roller…and in doing that…I kinda reinjured my left knee/leg…but I am walking on a wing and a prayer…whooooa000 I’m halfway there…despite all that I enjoyed myself…wanted to make fishermans pie for St Paddy supper but just not able to do that…made it on Sunday though…yummy

Anyway…hope you are all safe with this storm looming…here are a bunch of images from the weekend


Lamb v Saccone

Drain the swamp…that is what Trump says he wants to do…and we know he always keeps his word….right ?

So why is he supporting Rick Saccone ? Obviously because they both belong to the republicans . Problem is…Saccone has lived in the swamp for the past 19 years…he is a run of the mill career politician…speaks politician speak…so that means he does not answer questions in an honest fashion . Besides that he wants to steal your money…take your social security away…that you paid into…he runs a commercial…where a woman talks about losing her husband…and the middle class tax cut…she says she needs all the help she can get…she scolds Lamb for calling the tax cut …crumb….what she doesnt realize is that Lamb is saying…Saccone is not giving her her fair share…he is only giving her a crumb…and it is true…darn those snake oil salesmen

On the other hand…Conor Lamb speaks in normal speak…he addresses the people’s everyday concerns…he supports social security and health care…he is not tied into special interest groups the way Saccone is…he is not a career politician…he is fresh and refreshing…if trump had half a brain he would support Lamb…he is young and is about the people…not about money money money…and selling his soul to the highest bidder .

If you want someone who truly cares about you as a person…not just a vote…choose Conor Lamb

One more thing…dont listen to the polls…we know how wrong they can be …come Tuesday…get your ass out the door and vote…this time your vote will count…yes…no electoral college sham going on here

Cats defeat Fuel to win championship

alexinprogressWell I missed the first 3 minutes and the first goal of the game as the team from Indianapolis initiated the scoring

The Wildcats would tie the game…the Fuel would race back into the lead…on a power play goal making it 2-1…the NorthPittsburgh team would then level the score at 2 before taking a 3-2 lead into the third period .

That lead was gone just in the first minute of the third period…the Fuel had their legs moving…the wildcats were spectators as they watched their goalie make 5 straight saves before the Fuel potted the puck and tying the game

Two more goals for the Wildcats put them up 5-3…with about 5 minutes left in the third period . And that is when it got interesting…The Wildcats went into defensive mode…and well that gave the Fuel enough chances to get back in the game ….to me it made no sense because for the entire game Pittsburgh dominated time of posession….and like I said it got interesting as the Fuel went 5 hole to make it 5-4 . The Cats continued to play …ice the puck …and were very fortunate to come away with the win and the championship