A Week for the Books…

This year we were busy the week of my birthday- we had something planned every other day.

October 30th- Sunday, we had tickets to the Amos Lee Concert, which was amazing! There is something about his music and something even more when it’s live. I am so glad we got tickets.

img_1330 img_1333 a few pictures, we had good seats

October 31st- Halloween

img_1353 Loved our pumpkins this year

November 1st- my birthday Carl took me too a very fancy steak house- Ruth Chris Steak House I had lobster which was amazing and Carl had steak. Carl, got me a pedicure gift certificate, pretty earrings and tickets to A Christmas Carol play! It was a great birthday and very memorable.

img_1411 What a great birthday! Thanks Honey!

November 2nd- I had gotten us tickets to tour US Bank Stadium, that was an awesome tour and well worth it.


The week was packed and it wasn’t over yet, on Friday I had to clean for our 2nd baby shower that was at our house that weekend! Needless to say, I was pooped by Sunday!

I am blessed by the memories that were had during our busy week!




Wedding Season-East Coast

The weekend after our housewarming/surprise birthday party and Carl’s actual birthday, we flew out to North Carolina-Blowing Rock for my sister-in-laws wedding. It was a quick trip there and back but was good to see Carl’s sister get married, all of the family and get out to the east coast.

The wedding was at the Chetola Resort in Blowing Rock, NC. It was about a 2hr drive north of Charolette. The drive up there was pretty cool with the green lush mountains. There was some road construction that made us feel like we were back in the Midwest.

On Friday night, everyone was hungry and needed a drink, so we ventured to town and hung out at the Blowing Rock Brewery. It was a pretty neat place because we sat outside and it was good for people watching.

On Saturday, Carl and I went into town to grab lunch and we stumbled upon this place- Rustique  the food was fantastic. In the picture above I had a Trout Reuben- it was cornmeal crusted with gruyere, sauce, coleslaw and pancetta and Carl had pulled pork! It was so good, Carl tried my trout and said it was pretty good.

The centerpieces are part from my friend Teri’s wedding and Carl’s sister bought some from her so they made the trip from MN to WI all the way to NC.

I love the photos of Carl and I, we don’t always get photos of us so these turned out great. My dress was a coral color and Carl’s tie was a navy color, we coordinated pretty well. And a surprise to Carl’s family- he was dancing and they were surprised. Oh yes! Carl dances and we may have shut down a few wedding dances before! 🙂

It was a good weekend and wedding full of memories, family, love and laughter!

When we woke up on Sunday morning, it was so chilly, we felt like we were back in the Midwest! It was cold!



Carl’s 30th Birthday!

Carl’s birthday was on a Tuesday and I found a cool place to take him too that we haven’t been to before. I heard on the radio about a place in the metro that is replicated after the speakeasy’s. In order to get in, you have to find the “red door”!

The place is called the Volstead House, the atmosphere was really neat, they even dressed from the era as well.


Later that week, we met my friend Teri because it was her birthday over the weekend and we weren’t going to be in town.

I was super excited to see her and was super excited to get mussels!

IMG_0476 I love me some seafood!

It was a busy weekend/week/next weekend! But all fun!

I have some special people who have B-Days!!

Surprise Birthday Dinner…

On Monday October 26th, I got a pleasant surprise to start my birthday week. I was working in a remote location that day so when I got home, it wasn’t more than 10 mins and I already had my pj’s on, I don’t mess around. It was about 6:30pm and Carl asked what I wanted for supper. Do you ever have those nights where you don’t want to think, you don’t want to do dishes and you don’t really want to cook. My answer to his question was I’m fine with mac and cheese, yup at my age I’m cool with gf mac and cheese. Then Carl said lets go out to eat, I was very skeptical because it was a Monday night and normally we stay in. So I reluctantly  got out of my pj’s and back into normal clothes, I did tell Carl this better be worth it because I got out of my pj’s.

Next thing I know, we are driving to the Mall of America, weird, we never go there and especially on a Monday night. Now we are standing in front of the Benihana Restaurant I have never been there and I have always wanted to go. I was shocked and told Carl it isn’t my birthday yet and asked isn’t this place expensive?! I almost texted my two friends who have been there before and told them where I was because they have been telling me I need to go.

As we walked to the table they seated us at, I heard a bunch of people and noise and as I turn around 4 of my closest dear friends come out singing happy birthday and cheering. You need to know, I normally can sniff out surprises and stuff like this because I tend to be very observant and on point. I had no idea this was planned or going on, my friends hid in the bathroom so I wouldn’t see them. Carl had planned this for almost a month, my crazy OCD and planning/scheduling is rubbing off on him. The funny thing is the two friends I was going to text were in the bathroom hiding. I was so surprised, I cried tears of joy because I am so lucky to have great friends and I know how busy we are and what hassle it is for us to make our schedules work. So I appreciate that they came to dinner on a Monday night. It was awesome, I love watching people cook, so it was a dinner and a show.

Here are some photos of that night!


What a great start to my birthday week! We have tried to do birthday dinners around my birthday because it is a reason for us to get together otherwise everyone has birthdays in the Spring. So this is the third dinner that we all have made.

It was worth it to change out of my pj’s! 😉

Thank you so much Carl so much for organizing this! Love you lots!

Thanks Friends!

Food Porn…

If you have been following my blog you know, I love cooking and eating! Have you ever had the one meal that you are like holy crap that is a party in my mouth! Two weeks ago, my sister and I had a conference out of town so when we were traveling back home, I had to take my sister to one of my favorite places. When I get a chance I stop into the The Cheese Cave. I stop! I love this place for a variety of reasons: 1. They know me by name 2. They have made lots of GF recipes and goodness-Jake the cook is awesome and I love to watch him cook  3. They have good wine 4. the cheese is the bomb, its so flavorful and addicting 5. its a nice small town place which I love

So when we stopped  we obviously needed a glass of wine. I got a GF pizza with like 4 different cheeses and with a fresh lemon salad on top! I wouldn’t normally order something like that but it was so delicious, flavorful and fresh tasting. My sister got the loaded potato soup and a grilled cheese. Her soup was awesome.

So enjoy my food porn photos.



Summertime and Sunshine

Here are a handful of photos from our time with friends from this summer.

We went to W.A. Frost and Company for my friends birthday and it was such a great place, we ate outside and the environment was great. Then the following weekend I had bought a groupon deal for a Tacos, Tequila, Sangria event, that was fun. Then we stopped at Stella’s Fish Cafe’ I needed the mussels, I ate the whole dish- sooooo delicious, which was probably not a good idea. But worth it! Then later in June, we traveled to Madison, WI to see our college friends for the weekend, What a fun time we had. We had fabulous gluten free pizza the first night, yum yum…

Enjoy our photos!


Last Saturday night, we met with Jake and David for our monthly get together. It was our turn to go visit them and we decided to try the sushi place by their house that they like. It was good and had a fun atmosphere. When we get together with Jake and David, we always know we will be in for a good night and lots of laughs but when you add great food, it just makes it that much better. Here are a few photos from our sushi night.

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We got an Avocado roll, Philly roll and Rainbow roll and fried rice for a side. It was all so good.

We are definitely finding cool sushi places.


Sushi Virgins, No More…

The time has finally come, Carl and I are no longer sushi virgins! Two of sisters have raved about this sushi place being the best in the Twin Cities. I have wanted to try sushi for a long time but I wanted to do it the right way. Go somewhere where it is really good and then explore from there. We met up with my sister and brother-in-law at Yumi’s Sushi Bar. Check out the menu. We let them order for us and we went with the flow. We tried about about 30-40 rolls and had edamame too.

We had the following rolls:

2-14 / two-fourteen / **
Tuna, Yellowtail, Super white, Salmon, spiced up and shrimp tempura, tobiko, wrapped with soy paper, splash of homemade sauce

Rainbow Roll
Snow crab, Avocado, Cucumbers, topped with 5 kinds of fish/chefs choice

Spicy mayo, cilantro, avocado, jalapeno, sockeye, red snapper, yellowfin tuna, white tuna, salmon, yellowtail, bed of wasabi mayo, finished with ponzu sauce and chili oil

We had one more that was not on the menu. I could only eat the rainbow roll, because we forgot to tell them to make them gluten free. Carl is not a seafood lover as much as me, but I’m so happy he had an open-mind and pallet to trying Sushi.

Here are some photos.

12:6:14 Moon I tried getting a good photo of the moon, it was amazing last night.

Yumi's Sushi Bar My sister telling us to hurry up to get to Sushi! haha

First Sushi Carl’s first sushi roll

Sushi yum yum yum!

All_Gone All gone! 30-40 sushi rolls down!

Thanks_Sister Thank you sister for opening our pallets to a whole world of amazing! Thanks to my other sister for the gift cards.

No more Sushi Virgins!

Happy Sushi eating!


Friends and Wine… What More Could I Need!

Last weekend we had a fun weekend with one of our favorite couples. David, Jake, Carl and I have been having monthly dinners for approximately a year now. We switch off each month and we normally cook a home cooked meal, drink wine, laugh lots and play games. This past weekend we had hung out in Stillwater, MN and did some wine tasting and then they came back to our house for a large assortment of appetizers, wine, games and a sleepover.

Here are a few photos from the weekend.

Wine_Tasting Carl and I wine tasting at Northern Vineyards in Stillwater, MN. 

Us Carl and I drinking more wine at Luna Rossa Wine Bar.

For appetizers, I made Pioneer Woman’s Spicy Lemon Garlic Shrimp, buffalo wings and had veggies. David and Jake made this fantastic fresh light salad.

We had a fun night hanging out.

Weekend Wrap-up

This weekend we had friends visit for the weekend. We wanted to do something fun while they were in town, we were pretty lucky to have decent weather for Friday and Saturday. Today is a little gloomy but great weather all weekend.

On Friday Morning, Carl and I both had off and ran some errands. I had a general idea of what the weekend was going to be like. Friday night we would eat out, Saturday we go to St. Paul and then Saturday night eat in (I had a fun supper planned) and then Sunday morning was breakfast at the diner.

On Friday afternoon, I threw together my chicken and steak marinades for the kabobs, they were really good.  We had fresh peppers, onions and mushrooms so you could build your own. It was good to let them marinade a day. I used my same Garlic Lemon Chicken Kabobs recipe that I posted in the past. I used a new Steak Marinade that I found on a Facebook page.

Here is the recipe-


1/3 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp garlic powder
3 Tbsp dried basil
1 1/2 Tbsp dried parsley flakes
1 tsp ground white pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp minced garlic (I also added more garlic) 
Per my brother, I added brandy to the marinade and that was really good. 

Combine all ingredients. Pour marinade over meat. Cover, and refrigerate for up to 8 hours. Cook meat as desired.

It was a great marinade.

On Friday night, we made reservations at our favorite place. Rudy’s Red Eye Grill– I always get the shrimp scampi off the gluten free menu, it’s good. When we got home we sat on the patio and enjoyed each other’s company. Arie had so much fun with our friends because he had someone to play with.

On Saturday Morning, Carl and I ran to the Farmer’s Market to get fresh sweet corn for our supper, I also grabbed cucumbers for juicing and Carl got me flowers, Their flowers are so awesome and so reasonably priced.

Fresh Farmer’s Market Flowers


We booked Tours at the Wabasha Street Caves– there we did the Caves Tour and the Gangster Tour (based on John Dillinger’s gang days) They were super interesting tours. I want to go to the ghosts and graveyards tour in October, I will have to talk Carl into that one! 🙂


Picture of the cave. It was a very interesting tour because they talked about all the gangsters and the “behind the scenes” stuff that went on.

There were 3 rules that they had to follow:

1. Don’t commit crime within the city limits of St. Paul.

2. Make your donation.

3. Always check in.


Our tour guide for the caves tour and the gangster tour was “John Dillinger”. He was a good tour guide and kept us engaged the whole time.

After our tours, we had lunch at Bulldog’s in Lowertown. When we were done eating, there was a festival going on across the street from the restaurant. We walked over and it was a guitar festival. I think Carl was in heaven the minute he heard the guitars. We sat and listened to one act play. We also saw the Mayor and I was set on getting a picture with him but he had walked away to the other side of the stage and I didn’t want to appear to be a creeper. 🙂

Lowertown Guitar Festival– It was their first year of this festival and it seemed like a big hit. Carl said he would like to go again if they have a second year.

A few pictures from there-


This was off my cell phone and it was a picture of the outdoor stage.


Carl and I at the festival.

Needless to say, we had a fun busy weekend. Our Saturday night supper turned out great. I also won’t be eating for a while. haha.

Happy Sunday.

– Blondie!