Tag Archives: pizza

Thr3e Wise Men Brewing Company

31 May

I love my nieces, I really do. And you know there is a but or a however coming……I am a girl who lives alone with a semi quiet eight pound poohuahua. I’m not used to a lot of noise or constantly around little ones. So when my sister told me she booked a babysitter for Sunday night- I was ecstatic.  We took advantage and went to check out Thr3e Wise Men Brewing Company in Broad Ripple section of Indianapolis. Thr3e Wise Men is relatively new, it opened earlier this year and I am always game to try a new brewery.

Despite it being Race Day, it was hopping for a Sunday night. They have an open seating area inside with regular tables and longer picnic like tables that you share with others along with outdoor seating facing Broad Ripple Ave. They provide popcorn and have a limited menu with goodies such as hot sandwiches, pizza, calzones and traditional appetizers.

They have a sampler that offers 3 – 6 oz. samples  for only $5. I hate commitment and beer commitment is horrible if you don’t know what they have. This was a great way to try their beers.

From left to right :

Two Lucy’s Blackberry Wheat

Snow Bunny Blonde

Black IPA (special of the day)

Our server suggested I drink in order from left to right and that was definitely the way to go. The Blackberry Wheat was my favorite mostly because of the color, duh and it was quite refreshing for a warm evening and not too hoppy. I liked the Snow Bunny Blonde but the taste was strong and think I would only be able to have one or two in an evening. The Black IPA was delicious and ideal for an after dinner drink-hello chocolatey hints!


We started off with an order of fried pickles with horseradish sauce, which was new to me because I always have them with ranch. It was fantastic and I can say with confidence I am finally starting to dig the horseradish. I hated it when I was younger but I guess I have a more refined palate now. I never tried fried pickles before living in Charlotte so I had no clue that they were on menus all over the country. I still fear one of these days I’m going to run into fried pickle spears again—blech! Our dinner came out shortly after downing the pickles. I wanted something with substance but also light so I went with the hummus pizza

MMMMMMMM! A perfect, light meal. The chunks of goat cheese were the winner of this pizza but also the hummus-it was roasted red pepper as opposed to plain hummus. I wasn’t a huge fan of the cucumbers on the pizza though (it reminded me of the seinfeld episode where Kramer wants to open up a make-your-own-pie restaurant place and he gets in an argument with Poppi over putting cucumbers on the pizza) Even so, it was still a terrific meal. The table next to us had their regular pizza and it looks wonderful as well with pleasing sizes.

Since I like to support local businesses, I got a growler of their Blackberry Wheat to go. My very first growler, I felt like a real adult when it was placed in front of me. Awwww.

They told me this will be good for two to three weeks  so it will be perfect for me to take home to Charlotte! Nothing like some ready to go booze when I get home. Right after I got it, I remembered I live alone so the night I drink this will be a fun one!

All in all, a solid brew pub to try if in Indianapolis. I love their selection of beers and I heard they are one of the only places around that you can buy beer (their growlers) on Sundays since I don’t think you can buy beer on Sundays in Indy.

What’s your favorite brewery? Favorite beer? I was a Natty Light girl forever (blame it on going to college in WV) but am starting to develop a palate for trippels and IPA’s. In the summertime, I love fruity beers and Abita Purple Haze and Sweetwater Blue are my two favorites.

Cursing the Swedes

6 Feb

Greetings from Panera!

I’ve currently loafing off their free Wi-Fi they offer here….one of the many reasons I love Panera so.

Blarg-why am I up so early??

 I woke up at 5A this morning for no reason whatsoever. And when you live in Charlotte, that blows because nothing is open and seeing that it’s Sunday, a majority of businesses don’t open until after noon. Seeing that I am not a churchie, this doesn’t fare well for me but god bless Panera for opening at 7A! I got the Breakfast Power Sandwich to start off with. I’ve never had this before and was pleased with it for the most part. It seemed to be a little soggy on the bottom but it comes in at 330 calories so I can deal with that.

I also got a free coffee thanks to MyPanera rewards club. If you haven’t joined–what are you waiting for? Not only have I gotten free coffees, lattes and teas but I’ve always received free pastries and bagels. Sign up now!

Check out the swag I got! You can’t take me anywhere…..

 I’m really stoked to try that mayo. I don’t ever buy mayo since I’m not addicted to it or anything but if I have to use it, I have tons of packets on hand.

Yesterday was interesting day so let’s just start with that. I woke up at 6A on a Saturday-completely meh worthy. I didn’t have any plans for the day and the Y doesn’t open until 7 or 8 so that wasn’t an option. And it was miserable outside. I don’t mind the rain that much but when you had a skiddish dog who dislikes the rain, it can be a bit difficult to deal with. Especially if it’s more than a steady drizzle out there because once we get back in, I have to towel dry him since he doesn’t reek of wet dog.

But he is pretty damn cute so I guess I can deal with it.

 I remembered a Groupon for Luna’s Living Kitchen I bought a couple of weeks ago. Luna’s is not only a vegetarian/vegan restaurant, they also offer raw options as well. I’ve heard good things about this place and switching it up with something vegan or raw could be an interesting switch up from the normal eggs or oats I have for breakfast on the weekend. Plus cold, rainy, dreary weather is totally an ideal let’s-go-get- hot- breakfast setting. 

I ordered the Bombin Buckwheat Blaster (with fresh kiwi, apple, banana, blueberry and raspberries) and a cup of coffee. About $11 for that…..breakfast for one person. But Groupon was paying $10 for that so only $1 and some change out-of-pocket. If I didn’t have a Groupon, I would definitely not pay that much for a bowl of buckwheat. Free refills on the coffee so at least I had that working to my advantage. 

Isn’t it absolutely gorgeous?  There were so many bright, colors in front of me, I felt like I had to wear sunglasses. It was a big, hearty portion with hints of cinnamon and nutmeg and a  wonderful breakfast to start a cold, rainy morning off on. One of the employees dropped by, asked how everything was and if I’ve been before. They are so dang friendly….and dare I say natural….there, I love it and wish more places employed people like this. I really like how they have fresh fruit sitting out by the window in the front and the staff will walk back and forth from there and the kitchen picking what they are about to use in a dish, that’s just cool seeing what’s going into your food. All in all, a great experience however I will only be going back to Luna’s if I a have coupon (lucky for me, I bought two Groupons) or want to splurge. Their prices are just too high for my budget with eating out but I really love their concept.
I got back home and it was Bob Vila time

Which naturally, I sang to “It’s peanut butter jelly time”. Whatever happened to him by the way?

I wasn’t doing major home renovations or anything, just fixing my bed frame. Which that itself is a huge project since I am really not a home improvement kind of girl. It took me about 15 minutes just to find my hammer and screw drivers so yeah, this was going to be interesting.

Basically, what happened was Ikea sucks.

No, just kidding that’s not what happened but they do kinda suck.

My bed frame broke…..and not because of anything fun. It broke because it was $90 and I had to put it together at home instead of ahem, a professional bed frame put together-er doing it.

So I’ve been ghetto-fab taping it up with duct tape

Classy I know. So naturally, my thought is “Ok, the duct tape and rockiness are ok for me but what if I meet a gentleman caller soon?” Not like I will meet one soon because this is one of the slowest seasons I’ve had and haven’t even been on a date since August-meh! But still what we to happen, things get saucy, then hi-come to my broken Ikea bed because that doesn’t make me look like a whore or anything.

So I lifted up the mattress to see what exactly was going on with this stinky bed frame and found the root of the problem

Hmmmm…..pretty sure that it shouldn’t look like that. I removed the ladder thing from the bed and found that the actually frame was really shaky. So I grabbed my screwdriver to see if I could tighten things up a bit. Then I remembered that Ikea has their own little do-hickeys to use when putting together their furniture so a regular screw driver was going to be of no help to me.

So I started to curse everything Swedish….

Ikea

Meatballs

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My ex boyfriend who was Swedish

I cursed everything Swedish….. except Abba of course

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Dear ABBA: I love you and owe so many mornings to you since your Pandora station is always there to properly wake me up!

Soon enough, I got everything in check. Turns out the middle partician was wobbly so I taped that bad boy up and then taped up the corners as well.

I got the mattress on and it was Lincoln approved!

Afterwards, I made the mistake of turning on WE, then getting sucked into the Joan and Melissa Rivers reality show then Ghost Whisperer. I’ve never seen GH but I actually enjoyed it–besides the fact that I was crying every other minute. Hello emotions–it’s nice to see you come out and play while I try to kick back and watch tv! One of my friends texted me asking me if I wanted to meet her at the Y for a workout so I jumped at the chance since I needed to get away from the couch and crying.

I met up with her at the Y, I’m not used to working out with someone so I wasn’t sure what to expect. We got machines next to each other-she ran, I ellipticalled for 35 minutes (is that even a verb? If not, I’m making it one), then I rowed for 10 minutes. When we were both finished with cardio, we did some leg presses and leg extensions then I did some side bends with a 25 lb weight. And you know what? Had such a good time! Working out with someone made the time fly by and it was fun to catch up, gossip, talk about boys, etc. I can’t wait to meet up with her again for a buddy-workout!

I had plans to meet up with some friends at Big Daddy’s for dinner and was stoked to go. I am always down for a burger and fries and Big Daddy’s is one of the best in town. I walked over there because I figured the walking would cancel out maybe a slice of cheese I was going to devour on the burger and every little bit helps right? When I was about a block away, my friend told me they weren’t going to make it since they were fighting. Hooray for less awkwardness come dinner time but boo for cancellation at the last-minute. I wasn’t so gung-ho about it that I had to have a burger so I ended up turning around and going back home. I toyed for a few ideas of places I could carry out from but really didn’t want to spend the money. I would’ve made something  but was feeling too lazy.

Enter in the solution:

Times like these are why I buy frozen pizzas!

Holy cheesy yum! It was difficult to have only three slices and be satisfied, I could’ve downed the whole pizza. Instead while cutting up my slices for dinner, I sliced the rest of the pizza and put in the fridge asap so it wasn’t as accessible to be.

I had the last of my pumpkin ale.

LOVE THIS STUFF! I need to re-stock asap.

A good day all in all……I’m a little less hateful towards the Swedes than I was at the beginning of the day.

Ikea-Love it, hate it or *gasp* never been??

And so I whimper.

22 Jan

Ok, I hurt. Like really, really, really hurt. I haven’t hurt this much in a long ass time and the next day is going to be rough. Don’t worry, it’s not an emotional hurt, it’s all physical, all over.

“Why are you hurting so much?”

The answer involves two words—CrossFit.

Yelp sponsored a Cross Fit/Kettlebell class this morning at the new, swanky Metro Fitness Club. This place opened in September 2010 and I’ve been curious to see what it was about since it looked top-notch from what I’ve seen on their website plus they offer a number of programs such as CrossFit, kettlebell training, athletic conditioning and personal training plus offer the standard machines for cardio and strength training. I RSVP’d for this class at the last-minute last night out of boredom and  was just hoping for a good workout.

And a good workout I got.

I heard many people rave about CrossFit but never knew what it was about. From Metro’s website

   
  CrossFit is the Sport of Training. It’s different, it’s fun and will get you results fast. The camaraderie of our group training builds friendships, self-confidence and character. Our program focuses on varied full body functional movements that will make you stronger, faster, leaner and more powerful. Just come in and get started. You don’t have to get ready for it, that’s where our expertise comes into play! Everything we do can be scaled. If you are deconditioned, have a tweaked back or bad knees, we modify or scale our exercises and work load, so that everyone can participate. Our goal is to insure that you are working towards your potential with maximum effort in a safe environment. That means that everyone has different goals and ways to achieve them. We’ll get you there with great coaching, encouragement and support. See what our clients have to say about Metro CrossFit.

Hmm, still not sure what that meant but guess I had to go to see. When I walked into Metro Fitness, I was overtaken by the aesthetics of the place. It has orange and brown hues with very modern lighting and decor. I went into the locker room to drop off my stuff and while small, the locker room was visually pleasing as well and super clean. I started talking with one lady in there since I was wearing a WVU hat and turns out her ex was from there. I love seeing Mountaineers and repping my school! Turns out she was the General Manager and we would be seeing a lot of her in the next hour and a half. I met up with the rest of the Yelp group until it was time for us to start. We all moved back to the CrossFit area, not really knowing what to expect

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We did some warming up before getting started

 They started to explain what CrossFit was and how it worked.

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We split up into two groups–one for athletic conditioning and the other for CrossFit, I was in the CrossFit group at first and they put 15 minutes on the clock and we did as many intervals as we could within the 15 minutes

*250m rowing

*10 shoulder press and dips

*25 box jumps (I couldn’t do this so I just did step ups)

*5 burpees

And repeat. Doesn’t sound hard right? No. It was difficult doing everything so fast repetitively and my the second round I started to feel it. I had my heart rate monitor on and it was looking quite effective at that point!

Next round was athletic conditioning which I thought would be easier but again-wrong!

We paired up and did intervals at five different stations such as mountain climbers, sprinting with backpedaling, single legged jumps, step ups and hurdling. Of course, all of these aren’t the technical names but the best I could remember them. This absolutely kicked my ass. I kept telling my partner that my knees were burning and could feel my butt jiggling and she laughed and told me then it was working and I just shot her a death look from all her enthusiasm!

Soon after, we did our cool down along with stretching and complimentary smoothie samples (absolutely delicious, the strawberry banana was my favorite).

I was cursing the workout while doing it but shouldn’t have because check out this calorie burn! 

Holy crap!! And my high heart rate was 197–absolutely ridiculous but it was really effective and have no doubt that it brings results. The staff at Metro Fitness was absolutely wonderful, supportive and friendly. I was expecting a bit of a Biggest Loser scenario  and if I heard a phrase like “We got some heroes up in this place!” like Bob always chants, I swore I would’ve gone ape-shit but no go. I definitely recommend this to anyone out there that wants to be challenged!

Thanks Metro Fitness and Yelp for sponsoring this challenging, sweaty event!

Afterwards, there was yet another Yelp event to attend-it was the day of Yelp apparently! This one was for lunch (much-needed after a 800 calorie burning workout) to try some pupusas at a local El Salvadorian restaurant-El Pulgarcito de America.

I had no clue what a pupusa was so I had to google it and this is what I found on Wiki:

A pupusa (from Pipil pupusawa) is a traditional Salvadoran dish made of thick, hand-made corn tortilla (made using masa de maíz, a maize flour dough used in Latin American cuisine) that is filled with a blend of the following: cheese (queso) (usually a soft cheese called Quesillo found in all Central America), cooked pork meat ground to a paste consistency (called chicharrón, not to be confused with fried pork rind, which is also known as chicharrón in some other countries), squash (ayote), or (pataste), refried beans (frijoles refritos), or queso con loroco (loroco is a vine flower bud from Central America). Pupusas are typically served with curtido (lightly fermented cabbage slaw with red chilies and vinegar) and a watery tomato salsa.

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Slap me on the butt and call me intrigued b/c I was ready to get my pupusa on!

I ordered two pupusas

Under the hood shot…..

I also ordered a chicken tamale which wasn’t so good. It was too soggy and kept breaking apart

I loved the pupusas! I got mine filled with beans and cheese and they were hearty, tasty and full of queso. I loved it and had to stop myself from scarfing them down. Yay for trying new things! This place was super cheap. It was only $1.50/pupusa so I ordered two and $2 for the chicken tamale since that was the perfect amount of food for lunch. My bill? $6.60 for two pupusas, tamale and a diet coke. I will be coming back here fo sho-if you’re in the Charlotte area and want to take a chance on something new–try out El Pulgarcito de America. It’s in a bit of a sketch area on Central Avenue but worth a visit (during the day time at least)

Afterwards, another Yelper and I decided to check out  Central Coffee in Plaza Midwood. I follow them on Twitter and Facebook and they are a relatively newer company that I have been meaning to try.  We had coffee in house, served in a mismatching saucer set-just my style.  I’m not a saucer kinda girl at all but it was lovely and so was the Central Shorty (how cute of a name for a drink is that??)

 I kept looking for images of Jesus or the Virgin Mary in my coffee but no go.However, I think I saw a heart  which was appropriate because I fell in love with CC today.

It was nice to sit, enjoy a cup of coffee with no rush for time and talk. This is going to be my new go to spot for coffee and free Wi Fi access when I’m in the Plaza area.

When I got back home, Lincoln was super excited to see his momma and I wanted to take him out for a long walk but I was too achey too so we went out for a bit and tried to exhaust as much energy from him as possible. Then, all I wanted to do for the rest of the day was shower, get in comfy clothes and sleep on the couch. It was wonderful. When I woke up, I had plans on making pasta but really didn’t want to stand up or do anything that didn’t involve sitting so I ordered an individual sized pizza from Donato’s and it hit the spot!

Awwww yeah.

The rest of the night will be spent with little man.

 I just want to lounge, cuddle with him and whimper. Not asking for too much right?

And for those who asked about the marinade I used on the fail of a tofu the other night—it’s from Cloister Honey, a local company here in Charlotte.  I believe they deliver so you should check out their website, they also offer an infused vanilla honey.

Have you ever tried CrossFit?

 If so, what are your thoughts on it?

If not, do you have any interest in trying it?

New places, smiling faces

23 Dec

I have water….and it’s it’s not overflowing…woo hoo! Whatever the plumber did last night worked and I got to take a long, hot shower today (after I spent a half hour cleaning it last night), could wash my hands safely and most importantly, use the toilet. I am trying to appreciate every instance where I drink water now since who knows what could happen with my plumbing again.

Needless to say, this morning was rough. I was up until midnight last night cleaning and making sure it was safe to use everything. On top of that, I kept tossing and turning in fear that a disaster would happen while I was sleeping and that I would wake up to stank but thankfully that didn’t happen.

I went to Taste this morning for breakfast. Taste is a cafeteria style restaurant with different stations for sandwiches, soups, salads, etc.  in Founders Hall, where the Bank of America corporate center is located. What makes it interesting is that instead of part or full-time employees, they have Johnson & Wales students there making everything so they can get experience plus earn credits in the meanwhile. I’ve heard mixed things about it but heard they have a wide selection of breakfast items so I wanted to see what it was all about.

I went to the omelet bar and they had an omelet of the day for only $3.69—eggs, feta cheese, red peppers and feta.

Now that’s a deal I can be down with. However, right as she was almost done making it, I saw they had egg white omelets available. Always a next time for that though! It was such a clean and modern setting, I was quite impressed. They also make breakfast sandwiches and you can build you own plus they have oatmeal with a variety of mix ins. Seeing it was the day before Christmas Eve, there was only one other customer in there so I was in and out within minutes.

After that I stopped by Starbucks and my favorite barista looked at me and told me I looked tired. Thanks man. Not only do I know about the bags under my eyes, I now have people acknowledging them and letting me know that. Which when someone says that, it really means you look like crap. Meh. He asked what was wrong and I didn’t want to get into the whole drama of Toilet Gate ’10 and just told him I was having a not-so-great day. He told me to wait there and brought me this little gem

Free drink at Starbucks? Don’t mind if I do. The last time he gave me one of these puppies, I was crying in line while waiting to order b/c I was having a bad work day. Perhaps I should milk this more??! I won’t but I just love my baristas. It’s so nice walking in and they know me by name and I feel like they are my java buddies.

I tried yet another new place for lunch–Room 112. Which any time I see a sign for this place, I automatically get “Peaches & Cream” in my head–I can’t be the only one right? They are an Asian fusion restaurant and offer asian dishes and sushi lunch specials. I went with the sole purpose of sushi on my mind but when I spoke with my dad last night, he told me we would be going for sushi on Friday night.

A) I love the fact that my dad is addicted to the “sush” as he so affectionately calls it

B) Why pay for sushi when I can get it for free?

My friend and I were perusing their menu and we both decided on the same thing–sesame chicken. She switched up to sesame shrimp at the last-minute but I went through with my order.They give you a generous serving of chicken, a few pieces of freshly steamed broccoli and a spring roll. over brown rice, only $6.95! The chicken was fantastic but the breading was a little thick for my liking. I tried a piece of my friends shrimp and it was a perfect, light batter.

 We were in and out in less than an hour and I loved the modern look to it. I guess all the new places are going modern?  I dig it!

This afternoon came and went, made some phone calls, left a lot of voicemail (since I’m sure people don’t want to answer the phone from the bank around the holiday time) and working December 23rd is just lame. I kept looking outside to see all of these happy people who didn’t have to work, walking around and enjoying the day. It kinda sucked. I made a second Starbucks run of the day. While waiting in line, my co-worker mentioned the peppermint brownie and he asked if I’ve ever had it. I just sat there, mouth agape and when I finally could form a sentence I yelled out “It’s a peppermint chocolate party in your mouth, let’s go splitsies!” and that we did. He bought it but when we got back to the office, he wasn’t hungry for it anymore. Um, I could be at a Chinese buffet for three hours and be in unbuttoned pants status and I would still be in the mood for a brownie. Especially a peppermint brownie……

Beautiful, delicious, rich, moist brownie. It was heavenly.

By the time I got home, I was ready to sit and do nothing. But one of my best friends was coming into town for the wknd since her in-laws live here and we had plans to get together tonight. She lives in the DC area and told me that leaving DC, they only moves 70 miles within 3.5 hours—eek!! They had planned on getting into town around 6 or 7P and I was going to go over there, hang out and watch the Steelers game so I had to shower, get something to eat, etc. But that didn’t happen due to them hitting traffifc, getting in late and both of us were pretty mood.  With last nights shenanigans and a long day that dragged on today, I was beat. I needed something quick for dinner but didn’t want to dry my hair, go out somewhere to find something quick to eat then come back home. Plus I didn’t know what I was in the mood for–I hate that.

And one more time, pizza saves the day!

Dare I say—this was best frozen pizza I’ve  had!!! The goat cheese was the superstar of this show, it was creamy with the perfect tangy, salty taste. I loved it. I had to stop myself from eating the entire thing so I would have some for breakfast before I go to the airport tomorrow. If you haven’t tried this pizza–do me a favor and go out, buy it and try it. You won’t be disappointed!

And now, I need to tackle the little packing I have to do before leaving tomorrow morning. Lincoln is also being very lovey tonight, he definitely knows somethings up and he won’t be spending Xmas with his momma.

What has two thumbs and can barely keep her eyes open?? This Girl!

Be sure to keep an eye out for Frugal Friday tomorrow!

Cupcakes, Chili and Sanchez

6 Dec

Happy Monday (oxy moron if I’ve ever heard one). This is going to be a little weekend recap of a post. I feel like I was on the go all weekend and really didn’t get a chance to relax. I complain about that but I kinda like it that way because then I can relax on the week nights and don’t have to worry about getting anything done. Hope everyone had a great weekend and is staying warm! It’s supposed to be 17 tomorrow night and I am stoked. I am one of the weird ones who digs the cold weather since I can keep layering clothes on until I can’t put down my arms and have an excuse to hunker down on the couch. Before I forget— thanks for everyone for commenting on Lincoln’s post on Saturday. He had a super fabulous birthday and appreciates all the warm wishes!

I had a Groupon for The Blushing Bakeshop that I’ve been waiting to use. They are located on the side of town and never really make my way down there however when I took Lincoln to get groomed on Saturday, I thought, why not and stop by. I’ve read reviews about them on Yelp, both good and bad and wanted to chime in. And let’s be honest, I just wanted some  cupcakes. There I said it. 

They have little cutesie names for them which I found endearing but at the same time confusing. I like my cupcake names to be straight up: Carrot Cake, Red Velvet Cake, etc. Who knew that Dan meant Boston Crème? I know I didn’t. I got 4 (of course can’t remember the technical names) but they included: birthday cupcake, carrot cake, apple cake and boston crème.

 I tried the carrot cake one which was delectable and everything I hoped it would be along with the birthday one. Their buttercream frosting was out of this world and almost as big as the actual cupcake. I will be going back there for the frosting alone.

Their cupcakes were a bit pricey (I believe $2.75 a pop) but think this would be a special treat kind of place. The size of them reminded me of Georgetown Cupcake  , which is a top-notch cupcake place. I had to place the remaining two in the freezer before I demolished them but my tummy was definitely happy after trying The Blushing Bakeshop!

 Right before I picked up Lincoln, I passed by Lorenzo’s Pizzeria— Another spot I’ve been itching to go to. Any time I think of Lorenzo’s, my mind automatically flashes back to the Van Buren Boys episode on Seinfeld (one of my fave episodes!) Lorenzo’s is also on the other side of town and I knew I wouldn’t be in that area again for awhile. I’ve heard this place is out of this world and has authentic NY Pizza so I stopped in to see what it’s all about. Mind you I’m going to NY this wknd so I won’t need to wait long to have some NY style [pizza (since I didn’t get some this summer) but any excuse for pizza right? I got a slice of their pepperoni to enjoy later but I saw they offered slices of Sicilian pizza which made my heart jump. I never see any places with single slices of Sicilian pizza so this is a good thing this place is 25 mins from where I currently live because that would just be dangerous.

The pizza was terrific just as I expected. I don’t know if it was the cupcakes, the pizza or all the excitement of Lincoln’s birthday but soon after I was in a mini coma and I couldn’t stay awake for the WVU-Rutgers game. Big boooooo to that. It was WVU’s last regular scheduled game of the year and I tried desperately to stay awake but kept falling back into sleep.  But then a few hours later I awoke to the smell of chili. I was competing in a chili cookoff on Sunday and made me chili in the crock ahead of time on Saturday. It was just about finished cooking and I enjoyed a bowl topped with shredded cheese and sour cream.

 I try to go all out when I make my chili and don’t have a set recipe but this time, I just didn’t put any heart into it. I have just been exhausted this past week with doing stuff around the house and trying to get everything done before I leave next weekend, I didn’t plan out what I would put into it and just used the stuff I already had–Morningstar Veggie Crumbles, kidney beans, onions, jalapenos, Tabasco sauce, cumin, chili powder, garlic and black pepper. Next time I want to add more beans like cannellini or black beans instead of the standard kidney beans. I made it extra spicy this time around by adding slices of jalapenos and more Tabasco sauce than normal and you know what? I won 4th place at the chili cookoff  went to on Sunday! Yeah, 4th is nice and everything but  I am making a vow right now that next year I will place higher.

 Getting pinned with my 4th place chili  boutonniere.

Why do I look like a coffee toting mannequin?

There was a pup that’s smaller than Lincoln! Percy was absolutely adorable.

Source

 Sunday night  I went over to my friend’s place so Lincoln and I could get our Christmas pictures taken. We had a mini photo shoot and decided on three pictures for our Christmas cards. Lincoln was loving his Santa Paws shirt and even wore it to bed! It’s so sad though because when I bought the shirt it looked small for him but it ended up being too big. Poor little petite doggie. Here’s a few good photos we had.

 Every year I order them on Walgreens.com and they are ready the next day and can pick up there instead of having to worry about shipping +delivery. If you go to Walgreens.com and enter in the code CREATIVE you can get $10 off any $20 photo gift order through December 11! I picked them up tonight and am super excited—you gotta love a place that can make holiday cards in less than 24 hours!

I know many people out there are talking about the big Jets-Patriots game tonight. I love me some football but really don’t care about either team so when people have asked me who I want to win my response has been “Well, I am going with who I think the hotter quarterback is”

Or

 Verdict? Sanchez all the way baby.

 Go Jets.

PS–Win some VS snazzy PINK gear at Fashion Meets Food!

Mellow Out

3 Dec

Happy friggin Friday! I am so glad this week is over….mostly because next week will be the last five-day work week of the year for me. Thank God for saving vacation days until December.  Having a two, three and four-day work week for the rest of the year is like the light at the end of the tunnel for me right now. It’s something to look forward to to say the least.

Today was a day of good eats. It started with Chick Fil A. I saw that this month’s coupon was for  free  3 piece order of Chicken Mini’s or a medium order of Waffle Fries and since I had no breakfast in hand, Mini’s it was!

Hello my mini loves, get in my belly.

This morning flew by thanks to some busy work and a meeting that lasted longer then planned which was fine with me. The last thing I want is for Fridays to drag on. I also forgot my lunch and wasn’t in the mood for anything in particular. I was craving Chinese food all week but since I got some yesterday I didn’t want to go into MSG overload. I had a few odds and ends to pick up which brought me to Harris Teeter for lunch. On Fridays all of their foot long subs are only $3.99 so I walked over and got a foot long Chicken Breast Sub with provolone, banana pepper, black olives, tomato and lettuce. I always get this with their chipotle mayo which is out of this world and adds some extra zing to an ordinary sandwich.

Supposedly it’s going to flurry tomorrow night in Charlotte! Can I get a holla? This is very exciting news. I love that it’s actually starting to feel like winter our as opposed to last month when it was fall but still 70 degrees, not cool weather gods. I’m doing my best to stay bundled up but may need to put Lincoln in his sweater sooner than I thought.

Tonight was a blast from the past. Mellow Mushroom opened up a few months ago in Charlotte after closing down their locations a few years ago. The Mellow is one of my favorite pizza places to go to, it’s psychedelic, colorful and they have amazing pies. I haven’t been to one since my visit over Memorial Day wknd so a visit was long overdue.

Look at all the beer they have on tap! Or I guess you could look at the kid….at the bar…..with a beer.

To this day, I love menus with pictures. Eccentric pictures are even better.

After mulling through the menu items, I wanted to try something different, I really did. But the Magical Mystery Tour always calls my name.

And yet again, it didn’t fail me and still have some for leftovers. Job very well done Mellow Mushroom.

On an unrelated note…..

Umm, is anyone else excited for this? I am a sucker for chest hair so I will be most definitely be watching this show.

Stay tuned for an extra special post tomorrow!!!

Fun

6 Nov

So….it’s been an interesting week. The “fun” started on Wednesday when I got a flat tire on the way home from work….in the rain….with no AAA…..with barely any battery left on my cell phone. I frantically called one of my friends who lives near the gas station I was stuck at  and she came right over and dialed AAA for me. While waiting on them, we went to The Melting Pot to get a glass on wine so that made the whole ordeal go a little smoother but in the back on my head I was thinking about the extra expenses such as a new tire or two that I would soon be dealing with. Oh. I didn’t mention how work screwed up my paycheck last week due to me changing jobs did I? Yeah, my official start date was 10/18 but human resources didn’t have it until 11/1 so the check I received on 11/1 was still my old rate and I have to wait for a separate check to come with the difference plus a few days missed pay.That’s supposed to be in my checking account on Monday. We can view our paychecks three days in advance online and it’s not showing up right now so I’m a bit skeptical about it being in there. All I know is I can’ really roll with less than $90 in my checking account for over a week. That being said, I will be living ghetto this next week. I am using any Groupon I have to get some free meals, coupons and will be cooking a bunch. I think I may have a free sub at Harris Teeter as well so that will be two free meals for me. It just sucks feeling like I can’t due anything due to lack of money, I hate that feeling so much. If only I didn’t have the little thing called rent or mortgage getting in my way each month. I would love to be able to live free from that for a year and save it so I can feel like I have a solid savings.

When I got home after the flat tire situation, I wanted pizza. And not homemade or Papa Johns, I wanted the authentic stuff. I’ve heard great things about Luigi’s Pizza, a NY style pizza joint throughout Charlotte. When I was in NYC this summer, I never got a slice of pizza so the time was finally right to try NY style pizza….even if I am in Charlotte. This place is right near me but I’ve never stopped there because any time I drive by it, I can’t see inside and that kinda skeeves me out. Feeling great from the wine, I went over to Luigi’s and ordered a small pepperoni pizza to go.

That is what I’m talking about!! When I opened the box I couldn’t believe that was a small pizza but I was loving what was in front of me. It was huge for just one person so there was guaranteed to last me throughout the week! My only gripe was that it was *eek* $14. I never pay that much for a pizza and don’t remember pizza being that much but I kept repeating to myself that I was supporting a local business and it would last more than one meal so that made me feel better. The pizza was absolutely wonderful cheesy yummy deliciousness. When I took a bite, it melted right in my mouth and the sauce was traditional but with more oregano than anything. It was just the right amount of grease but not swimming it in but visible and I had to fold it in half to eat most of it and that’s exactly what I was looking for. I added some grated parm onto my slices and kept singing “Me So Parmy” to “Me So Horny”. That was Wednesday and that’s still in my head.

The next night I met up with some friends at Loco Lime. I say I could eat Mexican any day of the week but I really was feeling sushi that night so was in a bit of a toss-up. Once the chips and salsa came, everything was right in the world. The $2.50 Dos Equis didn’t hurt either (I didn’t know they had an Amber? I loved it!) One of my friends ordered the guacamole and said it was the best in Charlotte. It was good but not as good as Vida, which was smoother and creamier. Regardless, if it has avocado and sour cream in it, I’m going to eat it. I’m equal opportunity like that. I got the combination plate of barbaqoa tostada and flautas but by the time it rolled around, I was a bit full. I had the tostado and some of the rice and beans and got the rest to go. The tostado was interesting–it was served with a hard boiled egg on top along with avocado slices. It was good, I just wasn’t expecting to see a hard boiled egg. The barbaqoa was delicious and tender and when I tried the flautas they were crispy and tasty as well.

My friend ordered the Tres Leches Cake for dessert and I didn’t want to be rude and not have a bite. It was so cute and so tasty! We somehow got to eating it with our arms intertwined. I remember thinking of the idea but don’t know what brought it about and thought it was the funniest thing in the world….again $2.50 beers.

The leftovers were super the day after

I tried to make chili last night but it was a huge fail. Until this past year, I’ve only made chili in the crockpot but lately by the time I want it, it’s too late to put it in the crock so I’ve just been making on the stovetop. One of my co-workers had a surplus of peppers and gave me a huge bag to take home with me so figured I could use the variety of the peppers in the chili

I was getting excited about the chili with the scent of all the different peppers. But then the evil can opener made an appearance. I will buy a can opener and it’s fine but then it turns racist whenever I want to open a can of black beans and won’t open it. Then from there, it won’t open anything—wtf?? Seeing I wanted to add beans, tomato paste and diced tomatoes, this was no bueno. I kept getting a small opening in the can then repeat about 10 or 11 times then forced open the top with a knife. I was a bit frustrated. I wasn’t even going to eat the chili that night but wanted to use the peppers before they went bad. I bought a new can opener today so let’s cross our fingers and hope it’s all about the love.

I don’t know if I didn’t add enough stock or the setting was high but it was not looking good by the time it was done. I wouldn’t call it so much as chili but as chili dip. I put some of it into small containers for this week but think I will be scooping it up with pita chips or something instead of eating it soup like.

I was up at 6A to go get my tires checked out and was back by 9A. It was around 40 something and it felt super wonderful. I love this season so much but feel like we aren’t really going to get a fall and will have a few nice days then jump right into winter. It was sunny out though which with my Florida mentality, think that whenever it’s sunny, it’s warm which I really need to stop that school of thought. I headed to Freedom Park to go for a run/walk on the greenway. I usually go walk around the lake at Freedom Park but wanted to check out the greenway there. The greenway goes along a little stream next to the hospital and has a gorgeous view of the skyline. I walked but got some running in there also but the thing I loved the most was no one was out. I maybe passed by 5 or 6 people which was a breath of fresh air since the greenway by my old apartment consisted mostly of people with their out of control minions. I will definitely be going back for a run or a nice stroll soon.

Feeling good after my cookie success last week, I picked up a box of Sun Maid Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Mix at the supermarket this morning. It was only $1.50 and I had no plans tonight so why not?

 

Mmmmmmm….chewy and delicious.

Besides that, work has been a killer. And I’m still in training so wtf?? The last four years, I was in a set process with my job and sad to say, really didn’t use my brain too often. I had a set process every day and my work was very redundant so I’m not used to thinking anymore much less using analytical skills. The position I took it going to be a lot more work and they are changing their current process so current and new associates are all learning something new. I am just curious on how we are going to manag the amount of work we are getting. I’ve heard the current team is overwhelmed so we are there to take some of the work off of their hands but our group is supposed to get another 15,000 accounts within the next few months. Multi tasking is one of my biggest strengths so I should be fine with it but still, I get worried. Good news is that I got all the vacation I requested off. I am taking Monday off since I had an extra day to use then time off for my birthday in December (going to NYC!), time around Chrismtas (going to FL) and for New Years Eve.

 Fall back!