Welp, we didn't see George and Amal, but we did see these sweet boats in Varenna and had a great meal in Bellaggio. We stayed in Menaggio in a house that was called the White Villa, yet was a super bright orange color.
Seems that Lake Como is a lot like Hawaii in one regard: it is *everything* that everyone tells you it is. Just a very special place on earth.
Earlier this winter, I wrote about the old Lou Malnati's menu and mentioned that as I was waiting around for my pie to finish up, I spied an old Chicago Tribune article posted on the wall that included the original Lou Malnati's Italian Salad Dressing Recipe. The Tribune reporter called it "prized". We were set to host a little pizza party over the weekend, so I figured I'd give it a shot. Here's the article as seen through my mobile phone's camera. I'm not a wine drinker, so the fact that the recipe called for Burgundy wine didn't strike me as odd. I went shopping at Angelo Caputos in Addison - a really incredible shopping experience - and when I got to the wine section I found Burgundy wine was carried ONLY in those HUGE jugs. And they were dirt cheap. The only issue is that needed just 4 ounces. We ended up with a whole-lotta-wine that Nat won't drink. I've taken the recipe and modified it a bit by eliminating the percentage
Late February and Early March is usually the time when I start to get a little garden-stir-crazy and begin to get back out to examine the winter damage and build up my hopes for the coming growing season. It is when the tree and shrub buds begin to swell and we can start to see what is going to pop. It is also a sloppy, wet and muddy time of year. Or, a frozen-solid, snow-covered time of year. This past week, it was a mix of both. We had some warming temperatures with snow melting and some rains which made the ground soggy and saturated. They say you're supposed to stay out of your garden beds during the wet season of Spring to keep the ground from compacting too much, so I've mostly tooled around the lawn this week. It is a good time to document in the [tree diary] and [garden diary] the state of some of the buds that are beef'ing up and getting ready to put on a show. I'll start where I have typically started before: with our Saucer Magnolia. Below, you can
Trying to put down a marker in the lawn diary that I feed the front yard a couple bags of this new Milorganite competitor from Menards called e-Corganite . It is a 4-3-O 'eco-friendly' product that carries all of the claims that Milorganite does in terms of being heavy in iron, being non-burning and slow release. Right before Memorial Day Weekend, I threw down two full bags of this fertilizer on the front lawn, the parkway and the 'between two driveways' turf. I bought five bags, but when I decided to put down a synthetic weed and feed in the backyard about a week ago , I held off on spreading any of this in the backyard. Here's what the bag looks like: For my record-keeping purposes, this is the third application to the front yard. First, I used a bag of Ironite on the front in mid/late April . Followed up by 1/3rd of the bag of Soil Mastery soil conditioner featuring biochar, humic acid, sea kelp and lime at the end of April . I'm going to do a seco