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Monthly Archives: October 2011

We attended the most wonderful seminar at the EpCoT International Food & Wine Festival called ‘Taste, Shake and Indulge Like the French’. Billed as a ‘spirited tasting of the No. 1 French liqueur, Grand Marnier’, the seminar did not disappoint!

Before the seminar, I only thought of Grand Marnier as a mixer for cocktails or as a flavoring in some familair dishes (Crêpes Suzette, Duck a l’orange, etc.). After the seminar, I gained a greater appreciation for the orange-flavored spirit and even, learned how to make a yummy and refreshing cocktail!

“Get Smashed” (Grand Smash Cocktail, Grand Marnier Liqueur) Nikon Coolpix S50c, 6.3mm, F/3.3, 1/30s, ISO 200, ‘Vignette Blur’ Filter

I present to you, the Grand Smash.

1½ oz. Grand Marnier®
4 chunks fresh lemon (½ lemon)
6-8 mint leaves
 
Muddle mint leaves and lemon wedges in a tall mixing glass. Add Grand Marnier® and ice and shake vigorously. Strain over ice in a rocks glass and garnish with a fresh mint sprig.
 
Tasting notes: “Combine Grand Marnier’s richness and complexity with the exciting flavors of lemon and fresh mint and you have a simple formula for an amazing drink. This blend of liquid refreshment tastes delicious no matter what the season.”
 
I couldn’t agree more. 🙂
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So, we’re back from one short trip to Disney World and about to embark on another one! (Lucky us, no? 😉 ) Don’t get too jealous as this is our only real vacation each year and by the time it arrives, we soooooo need it!

“Animated Mickey” (Filmstrip Mickey Sculpture, Animation Courtyard, Disney’s Hollywood Studios) Nikon D300, 40mm, F/14, 1/320s, +0.3EV, ISO 200, Built-in i-TTL Fill Flash w/Gary Fong ‘Puffer’ Diffuser, -0.7EV, ‘Old West’ Toning Action

I didn’t take many photos this trip as I was too busy eating and drinking at the EpCoT Food & Wine Festival. (Hey, it’s a tough job, folks but someone has to do it. 😉 ) And, until the camera manufacturers develop a ‘drunk photographer’mode, I thought it best not to handle complicated equipment. 

After returning home I realized that the only time I carried my Nikon D300 was one morning’s outing to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

I really love the feeling at the studios, especially in Animation Courtyard where the focus is on what made Disney a household name in the first place – animation! Ever since the onset of computers, hand-drawn cels are becoming extremely rare but here at the studios, they keep the tradition alive.

“Celluloid Mickey” (Mickey Sculpture, Animation Courtyard, Disney’s Hollywood Studios) Nikon D300, 90mm, F/11, 1/500s, +0.3EV, ISO 200, Nik Silver Efex Pro ‘Solarized Border’ Filter

This is one of the few places where they are still producing hand-painted cels and during the week, you can watch as actual Disney animators perform their craft right before your eyes. (Hmmm, I wonder how many of us would like to be ‘on display’ while we work?)

In the back right-hand corner of the courtyard stands a sculpture I’ve photographed on several occasions with only so-so results. This time I shot from a low angle, using the sky as the background and therefore, was able to eliminate all the distracting elements that have ruined the image in the past. 

Still not quite sure I’ve achieved what I ultimately want but, these two images are the closest I’ve gotten. No worries. I’m willing to go back and try as many times as it takes. 😉

It may take me longer than most, but even I can no longer pretend that Autumn isn’t upon us. With that thought in mind, I went searchning for an image with which to say good-bye to summer and hello to fall.

“And the Sun Sets on Summer” (Rudbeckia ‘Gloriosa’ aka Black-eyed Susan) Nikon D300, VR 105mm F/2.8G, F/7.1, 1/125s, ISO

Yep, that’ll do it. 🙂

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