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Eatful in Seattle

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Eatful.  Is that even a thing?  I don’t think so.  But we were certainly not Eat-less…  So to continue this nonsensical link to some 80s movie, I’m saying eatful IS indeed a thing.

Basically, we spent our weekend in Seattle eating.  (Why, yes.  It has taken me over a week to post this.  Yikes.)

Many of our vacations revolve around food, and where we’re going, and things like breakfast dessert.  Serious.  Most of those happen in Vegas, but apparently Seattle is a favorite foodie location.

Friday

  • Lunch – random pho restaurant.  I don’t even know what town we were in.  I was on the lookout for a Starbucks (not hard to find, by the way) but the hubby wanted something else.  Because it was Friday he either needed fish or vegetarian, so he thought it would be easy to find something at this Vietnamese place.  Wow, was it good!  I had a vermicelli bowl with chicken and fried egg rolls, he had a fish stew pho, and we shared a tofu ban mi.  That sandwich was SO good, y’all!  I dreamt of the bread from that sandwich for days.  Serious.
  • Dinner – Elliott’s Oyster House.  We’ve been here a few times – it’s one of the hubby’s favorite restaurants.  It’s not one of mine.  Both things I’ve had in the past were not good.  This time, though, it redeemed itself.  We started with calimari – lightly fried, you could still taste the perfectly cooked calimari.  Yum.  Hubby had some fantastic Alder smoked salmon, and I ordered the main dish of crab cakes.  In hindsight, I should have gotten the salmon too.  The crab cakes were good, but a bit weird.  They were like a crab salad in the middle – still creamy with mayo.  I really like it when my crab cakes are only crab.  But they were still good.  We skipped dessert.

Saturday

  • Breakfast – Local 360.  (I don’t really know why, but they have a .0rg web address — cool!)  This place is cool.  As much food as possible is sourced from within 360 miles of Seattle.  We started out with breakfast appetizer:

PB & J Bon bons. You're jealous. Just admit it.

I ordered a sensible meal of scrambled eggs with roasted potatoes.  They weren’t anything special, but I wasn’t really expecting much from them — I just really wanted some plain eggs.  (After a breakfast appetizer of fried peanut butter, it’s usually better not to go too crazy).  That said, check out the hubby’s breakfast:

Chicken and Waffles, y'all!

  • We skipped lunch, since brunch was so late, but I stopped and picked up a box of granola bars and an iced decaf coffee at a grocery store between the wedding & the reception.
  • Dinner – Salty’s on Alki for the wedding reception.  Dinner was good – a large buffet.  The best were the shrimp scampi and the clam chowder.   The piece de resistance was not from the  restaurant, but was a marionberry wedding cake.  Mmmm, good stuff.

YAY for wedding cake

Sunday

  • Breakfast – Top Pot Doughnuts.  This is an amazing doughnut shop near our hotel
  • Lunch – Pike Place Chowder.  Shared a bread bowl of clam chowder.  I love this place.  So good.
  • Mid-afternoon outing – Freemont Brewing Company.  This was so odd…  Very odd.  There was a child’s birthday party going on in the bar.  I couldn’t decide at first if it was awesome or crazy.  I decided after watching the very chill parents, with microbrews in their hands, and the very happy kiddos, eating pizza and birthday cake, that this was GENIUS.  We just need to find a brewery that allows this here.  (Oh, and have a kiddo.  Small things…)  On that vein, since I was DD, they gave me (free!) fancy bottled rootbeer and ginger beer (non-acho!) Woot!
  • Dinner – Local 360.  Like I said, this was one of our favorite places.  I had the mussels with a side of fries.  And a side of mac and cheese.  The mussels were huge, and tasty, the fries were a bit over-fried (but the hubby loved them) and the mac and cheese was delish.  I should have just gotten the mac & cheese for myself.  Honestly?  I loved this meal so much that I have NO idea what the hubby got.  Sorry!

Monday

  • Breakfast appetizer – Top Pot Doughnuts.  Mmmmm.
  • Brunch – Dim Sum at Golden Harbor in Chinatown.  We walked all the way here from our hotel, and worked up quite a sweat (and appetite!).  We got a bunch of standard dim-sum dishes – but the best were the steamed shrimp & cilantro dumplings.  These were awesome.  I really wanted another dish of them, but we’d stuffed ourselves with shrimp balls and pork buns and lotus pods and taro dumplings.  I could not stuff another dumpling in.  So sad.
  • Mid-afternoon snack:  Elysian Brewing Company.  I drank some ginger ale, and Matt enjoyed their 2 beer samplers.  We noshed on the hummus, babaganoush, olive, pepper & feta plate.  I think it was called the “Oasis Plate”.  It was an oasis of yumminess.
  • Dinner – Serious Pie:  Salad of mixed greens with radishes and a sausage pizza.  Mmmm, pizza.

Tuesday

  • Brunch – Portage Bay Cafe.  This one was a spot-on recommendation from one of my readers.  Hi Alyssa!  This was quite possibly the best meal that we had the whole trip.  I got to doctor up my own meal

    Challa French toast

with the fantastic toppings bar!  I got the raspberries, blackberries, and cranberries to top 1 slice each, then topped the whole thing with slivered almonds and whipped cream and strawberries on the size.  Holy yum.

The toppings bar was awesome. Awesome, I say!

But really, the best thing I ate all weekend was the hubby’s Migas.  So super good.  He added the chorizo, and it was amazing.  A.maz.ing.  This picture doesn’t look like much, but it is.  Oh, it is.

Seriously, the best thing I ate this weekend.

At the airport on the way home, I wanted to grab the grilled fish tacos, but they were out of the fish, so I ended up with a pizza.  Meh.  Nothing to get too excited about.

But those migas, kids.  Those you should be VERY excited about!

Whew, what a weekend!

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This weekend went SO quickly!  Here’s the lowdown on all the happenings over in TresLaLa Land:

Thursday

I did an hour of shopping at the Ann Taylor Factory Store (everything was 40% off!).  I ended up with a seersucker blazer, 2 short faux-wrap dresses (1 navy & cream stripe and 1 navy & pink design), 1 long black & white stripe maxi dress, plus 3 dresses that I got for a friend’s wedding in Seattle this weekend and a pair of shoes to go with one of those dresses.  But, I’ve since decided to wear my standby wedding attending dress…  It fits well, matches a wrap that I have (Seattle’s going to be COLD!), and best of all, it’s free!  So, returning 2 of the 3 dresses that I got for the wedding, and keeping one for my friend’s baby shower in May.

Then I headed off to Safire Bistro in Camarillo, CA for dinner.  I had a Living Social deal for $60 off dinner.  Woot!  The table of 6 ladies (yay for Girls’ Night Out!) shared an appetizer of sautéed mushrooms with Parmesan and fried olives (holy yum!).  I then had a field greens salad with goat cheese added and a sausage wood-fired pizza.  The salad was good (of course), but the pizza was a bit runny.  The piece de resistance, however, was the shared bananas foster for dessert.  2 bites and I was feeling really good.

Friday:

I bailed on my personal trainer, and went to the grocery store, then home to clean, before we were having 3 friends over to carbo-load for our 10K the next morning.  Yes.  I know.  No need to carbo-load for a race that short.  But OH, was it good!  I got some fresh herb & cheese tortellini as well as some linguine, and mixed up 2 different kinds of sauces – a red sauce and a pesto-alfredo sauce.  Served with salad and my Mom’s famous garlic bread, of course.   None of this (besides the salad, I suppose) is healthy.  But oooh, so good.

Mom’s Famous Garlic Bread

1 loaf French bread, cut in 1″ wide slices — this works best with thick loaves, not the really thin ones
1/2 c Butter (1 stick)
2 tsp Parsley flakes (1 tsp if dried)
1/2 tsp Garlic powder
1/2 tsp Oregano
1/2 tsp Dill weed

Melt the butter & mix in the spices.  Place the loaf on a “bed” of aluminum foil.  Brush the mixture on each slice using a pastry brush; brush some on the top.  Wrap the bread in the foil & bake for 15 minutes at 400*.  Voila!

After dinner, we watched The Adventures of TinTin.  Eh, not my favorite.  I fell asleep a few times…

 Saturday

Up bright and early for the Great Race of Agoura Old Agoura 10K.  I’ve done this race 5 times.  Well, I’ve done the 10K 3 times, and one of the 2 (two!) half-marathons twice.  I’ve since decided that 10K is really the furthest that my body will allow me to go.  So that’s what I stick with now.

We parked at a local school, and walked to the starting line, which is in the middle of a subdivision.  There were 2 heats for the 10K – we stayed in the 2nd heat because I wasn’t going to average sub-9 minute miles!  The run was fantastic.  Great volunteers with about 3 water stops.  Cheering sections.  Cops everywhere.  Really well run.  I really wanted one of the volunteer’s T-shirts:  They were bright neon yellow and said “Run Great Race Great”.  How fantastic is that?!?

Overall, I think I did fairly well for not really training.  I’ve been doing a lot of Pilates and working out with my trainer, but not so much cardio.  My chip time was 1:16:18.7 (works out to a 12.25 minute mile — considering the hills, that’s actually pretty good for me).  I beat the hubby by 7 seconds.

The best cheer that I’d heard from a Volunteer?

Charlie Sheen would be SO proud of you… because you’re Winning!

Love!  I definitely cheered after that one!

The after-party was fantastic.  SO.Much.Food!  The race is sponsored by Dole, so they had juices, orange cups, and bananas, but there were  a bunch of other places out there too!  Whole Foods did either pancakes or crepes made to order, Pizza Salad was serving up organic cheese pizza, Bruegger’s Bagels had… bagels, and Great Harvest was slicing up some great bread.  Not to mention the probiotic yogurt drink and the Energy drink that I’ve forgotten the name of (but definitely stocked up on).  Got my picture taken with the Lorax, and if I’d been a kid I would have LOVED the bouncy houses.  There were like 5 of them — super fancy ones too!

All-in-all, this was a fantastic race.  Didn’t help my cause that I’ve been sore all weekend (mostly in my core, which is super weird).  Pictures will be posted on Thursday, so I’ll show you how awesome I look when running.  (And my Lorax picture!)

Saturday evening Matt & I went out for Indian food, then went home and watched Water for Elephants.  Really liked the movie, but the scene with the elephant and August was really hard.  I started crying!

Sunday

Up fairly early, super sore, and made breakfast – scrambled eggs (3 eggs, 3 egg whites) with spinach, tomatoes, and black olives.  Read the paper, then headed off to pick up some friends to go to Ikea.  They were buying some cabinets to make a bar, and I needed a few things.  Unfortunately, the 2 things I really “needed” were both out.  Booo.

Then at 5:30 they came over again, we had some appetizers, then headed off to see The Hunger Games.  It was SO good.  Really good.  They did a really good job with it.  But now I’m peeved that I need to wait >500 days for the 2nd one to come out.  Don’t they realize that I’m obsessed?

Phew.  Jam-packed weekend.  And now I’m ready to tackle the week!  And it’s a short one — we’re headed to Seattle for a wedding on Friday morning!

French Army Knife, Please!

Spent the day with a friend in Santa Monica, after missing my massage appointment.  Yes, you read that correctly.  I’m so upset!  My appointment was for 1 PM, but I was convinced that it was at 2 PM…  So I’m getting ready to leave the house at 1:40, grab my phone and check it, somewhat absent mindedly…  And lo and behold, there’s a message from my Chiropractor’s office, “Hi Lara, Just wondering if you could call us back to reschedule your appointment.”   Aaargh!  That’s the 2nd appointment for something that I’ve missed this week!  Talk about disorganized!

Left my hubby and 10 of his dearest co-workers to DESTROY my kitchen with pizza and beer, while they drafted their Fantasy Football teams.

PS: I was NOT a happy camper when I came home this evening to find my kitchen & living room & patio a mess, hubby up in bed, dogs unfed (and no water!), and spare pizza on the stove (with pizza boxes on the upholstery of the stools at the kitchen counter.  Not a happy camper, indeed.

But, I did have a fantastic time in Santa Monica today!  I picked Tash up & we headed off to the 3rd Street Promenade, where we promenaded to our hearts content, until I realized after leaving The Gap that I hadn’t eaten anything all day.  Despite having 2 iced coffees and running 3 miles.  Totally unlike me!  TOTALLY.  I do not forget to eat!

Amazing what happens when you’re 33 – there IS a first time for everything.

We decided to head over to the mall, Santa Monica Place, and try out a wine bar that she suggested, the Sonoma Wine Garden.

Loved the wooden & cork menus!

I just could not believe that we were in a mall – it was beautiful!

Isn't the chandelier beautiful? I want one!

And I loved the wall art!

Anyone know where I can find one of these? Fleur de lis & all?

We sat on the patio, with a bit of a view of the ocean.  Lovely day, lovely company, lovely wine & lovely food.  Doesn’t get much better than that, does it?

Valley of the Moon Pinot Blanc to share.

They also had wines that you could serve yourself with 1, 3, or 5 oz pours.  Stick a little card in, based on what you’ve pre-paid for, and get your tasters.  Will have to try that next time.  The only problem is that those were all the way over by the bar, and if you’re sitting, enjoying your company, etc., it might be kind of a pain.  Would be a fun place to spend happy hour though.

We shared the truffle fries, a beet & goat cheese salad, and a “Garden pizza”, which was mushrooms, garlic & arugula, with ricotta cheese.  All of it was fantastic, and the service was very good.  I never waited more than 3 minutes for my water-glass to be refilled (I drink a lot of water when out, and it’s a huge pet peeve if it’s not refilled when I need my next big gulp!)

Mixed beet, Goat Cheese & Avocado salad to share.

The last piece of pizza. The crust was so crispy!

After lunch/dinner (it was about 5 by the time we finished), we headed over to Nordstrom’s.  HUGE shoe sale!  But, they didn’t have anything that I was dying for on the sale rack, so I held back.  But, I did get some new gold Havaianas Slim flip-flops.  Hey, I live in California.  Flip flops are worn year-round!  And, I’ve been lusting after them for a while, but could never find my size (I’m a 10/11 in shoes — closer to the 11, so I never like buying shoes online because I can’t guarantee they’ll fit, and I’m not good at returning stuff when I order it).

Source.

Now that the kitchen is clean, it’s off to bed with me.  Wine tasting tomorrow!  (Won’t be blogging until Monday evening, likely…  So much for the PostADay challenge.  Although I did vacuum today, and I also found my retainer!  Winning!

I am a ball of stress…

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I’ve been MIA for a while. Here’s what I’ve been up to:

  • Jury duty. Started last Thursday, and I’ve been sat on a jury, that is STILL going on. They expect to finish providing us with evidence today, then we’re likely off tomorrow, and they give it to the jury next week for deliberations & to come to a verdict. MUST be done by Wednesday night – otherwise I don’t get paid.
  • Final exam for Management Strategy class. It was this past Monday at 6 PM. I am now DONE with classes on my MBA! Graduation is on Saturday!!! Woot!
  • The cleaning people came on Tuesday. Which means usually I’m running around picking everything up the day before. Except, I had an exam Monday, so I was running around on Tuesday morning picking up & clearing stuff from my office (which has been our little “dumping ground”;) so that it could be cleaned. Doing that, then losing my keys, made me late for court. D’oh! Just 5 minutes, but long enough for the judge to notice…
  • My parents are flying in tonight at 5:30 for my graduation. An hour and a half from where I’m at (maybe longer — it is SoCal, afterall). We don’t get out of court until about 4:30. So, I’m gonna be late. I haven’t seen my parents for over a year! Crazy…
  • Friday, we had plans to go wine tasting. But I’m supposed to be in court — but now we might be off tomorrow. I hate not knowing. Drives me nuts.
  • Saturday morning = graduation! Woot!
  • Saturday afternoon = Graduation / Holiday party. So excited about this, but there’s still a lot to prepare. Having a taco cart guy come out to cook, and a margarita machine guy come and deliver a machine for the party. Already bought most of the stuff for the party — would love to make some cupcakes though. Not ordering a cake — cupcakes are easy to make and don’t require forks. (AAAKKKKK, just remembered that I needed to buy plastic utensils). Also really need to call the taco guy to confirm the number of people who are coming…
  • eFeedbacks for everyone who sent them to me & my self-assessment for work (it’s the end of the year review time) are due tomorrow. I’m not a good person to give eFeedback — I usually have a LOT for people to work on next year… I’m not a fluffy person who says you’re awesome, then have nothing “bad” to say. It’s usually the other way around. But, I realize that this affects peoples’ raises and bonuses, and if I haven’t already said something about what they’re doing wrong, it’s probably not the time to raise the issue at that time…
  • Holiday shopping. I need to get gifts for: my dad, my brother in law. Two very difficult people to shop for.

I have not been eating well or exercising. I have LITERALLY eaten Chick-fil-a 4 of the 6 days that I’ve been in jury duty. The other 2 I had potato tacos. I love me some Chick-fil-a, but this is ridiculous. (There’s one close to the courthouse, and I feel like I never get to go, so I’ve been eating it LOTs. WAY TOO MUCH!) This must stop.


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