Latest Good eats

IMG_1296[1]Fresh eggs from a friend’s chickens.  I am not sure I’ve ever had an egg layed the same day.

IMG_1263[1]Burger night at the League! (Cedar Park, but there is one in Lakeway too)  Buy on get one free on Monday nights.  a LUNA favorite. We’ve had 3 special occasion non-LUNA events there and two meetings and the service has been great.  Can’t wait until it’s warm enough for us to enjoy the outdoor patio after sweaty summer runs!

Bunless american burger, homemade horseradish pickles (AWESOME) and a side of broccoli.  I’ve also done a whole sweet potato or asparagus (their fries aren’t GF).  Their burgers are GOOD (and you know I am a burger snob)!  I heard they have GF buns now, which I will have to try sometime.  I could make a meal out of those pickles.

IMG_1205[1]Seared tuna at Chee Zee.  OMG is was so good.  One of the best I’ve had, mostly because of the sauce.IMG_1140[1]Chicken kabobs from Tarka Indian Grill with veggies and basmati rice.

Things I like Thursday: SXSW time again

Tuesday night Dan and I went to our first showcase of SXSW.  I have never started that early in the week.  This kid doesn’t play late on school nights anymore.  This time of year is an exception.

We hit up the Red11 Showcase at the White Horse.  6 bands, $5 (free if you bought a wristband for SXSW).  We’ve never bought bands, you can get by without one for many shows.

Dinner.  Bomb Tacos food truck at the White Horse.  There are many locations of Bomb Tacos but this one is supposedly the best.  Yes, they were the bomb.  I had chicken fajita, veggie, and pulled pork.  Dan had 2 chicken fajita and beef fajita.  They were indeed good.  They offer flour and corn tortillas.  I got mine on corn, but Dan ate the actual tortillas, because I was pretty sure they weren’t gluten free.  So I guess I really had 3 small taco salads.  I am sure I could have ordered that.  Impressed.  I liked the chicken fajita the best, as did Dan.  The also offer nachos and quesadillas.

The show.  Lincoln Durham, The Crooks, Dirty River Boys, Turnpike Troubadours, American Aquarium, and Jason Eady.  We stayed for the first 5.  I didn’t know it was inside.  I wore a sweater and jeans.  I was SO hot.  I am never hot.  Plus it was SUPER crowded in the bar.  I actually, during the last act, bought a band tshirt to change into.  Of course, when we went to leave, I was cold again and put the sweater back on.  Whatever, I really wanted a Dirty River Boys shirt anyhow.

Apparently there are a ton of tall people in town.  I was close for Dirty River, but I couldn’t see much at all.  Doesn’t help that most of the guys in the band are also short!  I have seen them several times, my first was at SXSW last year.  LOVE them.

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My first time seeing the Crooks.  They had a lot of instruments in their set. 4 different types of guitars, banjo, maracas, tambourine, drums, accordion, trumpet, and some other percussion thing I don’t know the name of.  I LOVE accordions!  They were fun.  I think i’d like them live more than on the radio.

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My 2nd time seeing American Aquarium.  Last year’s SXSW was my first.  Dan LOVES them.   That’s why we were so close, he’s a total man-fan.

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Turnpike Troubadours.  Really like them, but I haven’t seen them much.  Good stuff.

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I got 3 hours of sleep that night, but it was totally worth it 🙂  Now looking ahead to see what, if any, other shows I’ll do this year.  So far, I have been working so much, that I’ve had 0 time to study.  Chronicle is being scoured over now.

Powers of healing

Minus Tuesday, which was a super high stress day at work, I have been feeling GREAT!  Like I stayed out until 3 am on Saturday morning and I didn’t take a nap Saturday OR Sunday (although for my adrenals, that a nap probably would have been wise).  And I have actually slept at night!  Granted, I am still waking up at least twice, but once of those is by alarm to take my early morning dose of thyroid.

What have I been doing other than the new supplements, along with my regular medication?

Yoga.  I did Yoga, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday.  My favorite of course is the class at Lululemon.  I wish they were having them there in February.  I did a small amount of Galloway before yoga on Sunday and it felt fine.  But my issue wasn’t always how I felt, it was what my body reacted to on the inside.  I haven’t done it again since.  Maybe today.

Giving.  I took half a day off on Friday, so I could volunteer for the Rogue 10k/30K packet pick-up.  I may have played hookie 🙂  I got to hang out with my gal Jenn and meet some new people.

Fun.  Dinner at Garrido’s with Dan and our friend Heather on Friday night.

Is it just me, or does Dan’s steak, over potato cakes with giant roasted jalapeno on top look kind of naughty?  Yeah, 90% of their menu is GF, I think he ordered that to keep me paws off of it (the potato cakes aren’t GF).

DanGarridos

I got steak too, sorta.  We didn’t eat dinner until late, so this was actually a 2nd light dinner for me.  There was no way I could wait until 8:30 to eat!mkGarridos

 Drive By Truckers show at the new Emo’s east after dinner.  If it weren’t for drunk college kids, it would have been the perfect evening.  Music heals.  This girl doesn’t do front row for ANYONE anymore.  But no matter what I say or how crazy the crowd is, I ALWAYS end up in the front row for DBT!

That’s my trying to be artistic pic of my Alabama guy, watching our favorite band from Alabama!
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We didn’t get home until 3 am.  WHEW!  Long Friday was SO worth it.  Exactly what we needed.

Saturday and Sunday, I worked on a few projects that were long overdue and did my taxes.  Now I am waiting for Dan to do his, to decide who claims the house (depends who benefits more $ from it).

Besides some stress hiccups from work, I am feeling GOOD!  Praying this lasts!

Unwind

St. Nick came to our house on Wednesday night.  Not sure why I got anything, I haven’t been very good and I was in a bad mood from work when I opened my gifts (mostly because they were reminders of things I can’t currently do right now because of my stupid medical issues).
stnick
We headed downtown after gifts for dinner and a concert.  We had dinner at Mellow Mushroom, because I know Dan loves it.  I tried their gluten free pizza.  Not.a.fan.  The crust was like cardboard.  A $20 piece of cardboard and the toppings were tasteless.  😦  I’d eaten there before I was gluten free and liked  it.  Next time I go there, I am skipping pizza.  At least Dan enjoyed his.

Then it was off to Hole in the Wall on the “drag” which is a main street (Guadalupe) that runs through the UT campus.  We were there to see Mike Cooley play solo.  I LOVE him, he’s my favorite member of the Drive By Truckers.cooley1

What I didn’t love was that I was exhausted.  I literally fell asleep standing up a few times in the bar.  I enjoyed the show, but I was just beat.  I’m happy I went, because it was good, but it would have been more fun had I been able to be more alert.  It’s a good thing the show wasn’t any later, or I would have likely been found propped up against a wall somewhere! cooley3

Speaking of Mike Cooley, he has a new solo album coming out.  Buy it here

Photo stolen from my friend Tricia, because her phone takes better pics 😉

Restaurant reviews: San Diego

George’s Ocean Terrace in  La Jolla.  I’d been to George’s before for dinner (but it was dark).  One of the best views in LaJolla, their rooftop patio is amazing (although it was overcast the day we were there).  Not a whole lot of gluten-free options.  I opted for the 5 spiced chicken salad and made a gf dressing sub.  It was ok, I was hungry 2 hours later.  Dan’s mom and cousin got the fish tacos and loved them, as well as their soup.  Not sure about the other 10 people who were with us.   They had dessert too, which they were raving about.  Views and service were terrific.  Most of our party was really pleased with the food.  I liked mine, it just didn’t stick with me.

Spaghetti Factory in San Marcos.  Rehearsal dinner was here.  The spinach dip was good (I just took a bite on a fork to taste).  They do have a gluten-free menu, although I didn’t find it all that exciting.  I got the baked chicken with gluten-free pasta.  The chicken was ok, the pasta was undercooked (I think it was the Heartland brand) and they forgot to bring the marinara sauce out with the meal.    Dan got one of their meals that had a bunch of different Italian dishes, he wasn’t impressed either.  Eh, it’s a chain restaurant, it wasn’t horrible, but I wouldn’t make a special trip either.   By time we got back to the hotel, I was starving, so Dan took me to Sprouts to get more food!

Victor’s Kafe in San Bernardo.  Lunch on Friday by myself, I got takeout here after I dropped Dan off at the country club.  It was GREAT!  Yelp rarely lets me down.  I had the Greek Chicken salad, large size, no pita.  It was super tasty and cheap.  Plus the guy working the counter was really nice and fun to talk to.

Azul in La Jolla.  We had brunch here the morning after the wedding.  Nice view of the ocean (although it was overcast again).  Service and view were great, so was the food.  For starters, they bring out fresh fruit and pastries.  To eat I had the sausage and eggs with cajun potatoes (they had to make them gluten-free for me).  Dan and his mom had the croissant french toast.  A few other people at our end of the table had some awesome looking omelettes.  Everyone loved their food.

The Godfather.  Saw this one in a book at our hotel and decided I was taking Dan there as a surprise (he loves mobster and mafia stuff).

It’s in a weird location, but don’t let the exterior fool you!  This is a NICE restaurant   They bring you fried zucchini to start (I can’t eat it, Dan had a little and said it was good).  Then we had caprese for an appetizer (Dan LOVES it).  We each had a dinner salad before the main course. Dan got one of the stuffed veal dishes, I got one of the salmon dishes.  He had so much food, he took a box home to his parents (his came with pasta and 2 huge pieces of veal stuffed with prosciutto,  cheeses, etc).  My food was good, but his was even better.

LOVED it.  Food was good, atmosphere was wonderful, very dim, cozy, and romantic, and the service was stellar.  One of the best displays of customer service I’ve ever seen by all staff that we encountered.  In fact, the guy bussing the tables saw me make a face when I got my salad and rushed over.  He brought me a new salad without croutons (which is how I requested it),  Our glasses were never empty.

Vacation over

Back to reality.  Actually, I was back to reality at midnight on Friday night after being in a car for 14 hours.  Remind me, I don’t like being in a car for 14 hours.

It all started with Zilker Relays on Aug 31.  Course PR for myself. And for once, I started close enough to the front of the pack and didn’t wear myself out bobbing and weaving through crowds.  102 degrees and HOT!

Saturday-San Antonio to Mobile area

Sunday-short run in Mobile area, drive to Foley to go to Lambert’s (everyone’s favorite part of trip), then down to the Florabama, and then eventually to Destin.  We had so much food leftover from lunch, we didn’t have to go out for dinner.

Monday-run.  Watched the fishing boats come in after lunch to decide who we wanted to charter with.  A little shopping and a trip to TCBY for the family.    Our hotel also had ice cream every day at 3.  Nothing I could eat, I had chocolate instead 🙂

Tuesday-gym (lots of serious builders which was interesting). rain.  Sailing cancelled.  Mini golf instead with dinner at the Boathouse.  This was a new place for me.  Total dive, but food was good.  Sister said her crabcakes there were her favorite meal of the trip.  Great views!

Wednesday-cloudy and windy beach time, then rain.  Sailing cancelled again.  Shopped WAY too much instead.  My wallet hurts.  I bought Dan a ton of stuff.  I got a new purse (which is still in the bag, I am not really a Coach girl, not sure I will keep it).  I ran 5 miles to dinner at Kenny D’s, told my parents to meet me there with a dry shirt, lol!  The food was great as usual (another place I found on Yelp last time with Dan)

Thursday-Deep sea fishing with dad during day.  The boat was AWFUL for the first hour (it was super rough) and then it poured, thank God for Dramamine.  Luckily the sun came out and the sea calmed down.  We caught a ton of white and mingo snapper (those aren’t all ours).  I felt like I ran a marathon, my legs were so tired from all of the rough sea and bouncing and my arms were tired from the heavy rod, weights, and fish!

Followed my tradition I usually have with Dan.  Last night’s dinner at the Crab Trap.  Yes, I am wearing a jumper.  Don’t eat or drink anything if you wear a jumper.  How the heck do these girls I see out wear them?  It’s a major undertaking to get that thing off and on.  Ate my weight in tuna steak.

Friday-Drive FOREVER.  Ate at Prejean’s Cajun in La (Dan and I found it a few years back),  SO good.  I got home at midnight.

Saturday-sleep.  laundry.  sleep.  Took mom to see Austin Roller Derby.  We both had a blast.  Late dinner at Zoe’s.  (mom is addicted now).  I was so beat from all of the driving on Friday and the harsh boat ride on Thursday.

Sunday-Brain Power 5K.  Big thanks to Heather and all of my friends who signed up to participate or donated.  I won my age group, 4th overall woman.  2 of the girls who beat me were less than half my age!  It was tear tag timing, which meant I should have started closer to the front, I never learn, haha!

Sunday night I made stew from Paleo Comfort Foods but added mushrooms, zucchini, and cauliflower.  It’s good, but I should have made the portions bigger, it’s not filling enough with how I packaged it for my lunches.  Dan hates stew.  More for me, lol!

Dan came home with the new jeep last night from Arizona.  I lost my garage parking spot.  Dan’s spots=2.  Melissa’s spots=0.  HUMPF!

Looking back at Houston

I’ve been going non-stop still, even though i’ve been back since Sunday night. I can’t even remember half of the last week.

I do remember this, made me laugh.  Yes, the Crowne has a Cougar Room. Yes, I know U of H Cougars is likely the source of the name, but I still think it’s funny.

Friday:  Met up with my new staff in Houston in just enough time for them to head back to Austin.  The rest of the weekend I was flying solo, but i’m a pro at those things.  (there was a pirate of the carribean theme this year).  That’s Texas made out of zinnias.  Unfortunately I didn’t really have time to walk around and look at the other booths since I was solo.  Plus my booth was way off in the corner with the educational booths.

Saturday:  Paid my $5 and ran my long run with Kenyan Way.  Can’t beat that!  $5 for pace group, aide, and a map.  I was between pace groups, but it worked out great.  Got a solid 10.5 miles in, which is the most i’ve done in a while.  I was swimming in sweat when I was done.

Hit Whole Foods on the way back to the hotel.  Salad bar again, but this time I got a smaller container, lol.  I filled it with half post-workout breakfast (eggs, migas, sausage, fruit) and half for lunch (hb eggs, veggies, meat).  So good!

Saturday night I went to dinner with Nicole at Freebird’s and then went to my very first Roller Derby bout.  It was a lot of fun!  I have friends in Austin and DFW that do it too, but i’d never before seen it live.  I will definitely go again!  It was so good to see Miss Nicole, I don’t see her often enough.

Sunday:  Did runner’s yoga from YouTube (if you can’t find the one with the guy in the pink neon spandex, he’s actually pretty good, lol).   Headed to the convention center early for exibitor’s breakfast aka Gluten Fest 2012.  Chicken and waffles, pastries to the sky, and fruit.  Grabbed a plate of fruit and dug into my bag for some nuts.

Show was 10-3 on Sunday.  It was DEAD.  Pouring rain outside.  At noon I went to lunch with my cousin Kristen at Phoenicia, which is kind of like a greek version of Central Market or Whole Foods (another awesome salad bar).  So fun!  I hadn’t seen her since my grandmother’s funeral 3 years ago.  I loved seeing her, wish I would have made more room in my schedule earlier in the week, it really had been too long.  It’s a long story, but we’ve always been friends, even though our mothers (who are sisters) do not speak to each other since we were in elementary school.  I am civil to all of my relatives, despite what my parents feel about anyone.  I need to see her and her siblings more often for sure.

At 3 pm I packed the heck up and got on the road to the office.  Dan picked me up at the office, then we had to head to his office so he could download files he needed for his trip to Brazil on Monday (he’s gone until Saturday afternoon).  I grabbed dinner, met him back at his office and we ate and caught up.  Sounds lame, but it was nice to finally see him and talk to him.  By time we got home, it was time for bed!

Monday:  The heck day.  At least though, Dan’s flight was early, so I got to say goodbye.  The whole day was a bust after that.

Tuesday:  Day was much better. I finally got back into the gym (neither hotel I stayed at had weights, nor did the cities have Gold’s).   I loved seeing my regular gals at the LUNA run after work.  It was overcast and rained a little, which probably scared some away, but my regulars were there and smiling and really enjoying the 85 degrees!

Wednesday:  Long day of training new staff, going away party at Chuy’s for our interns.  Green Chile Fest is going on!  I had the green chile shrimp salad, which was awesome.  I wound up eating dinner and running afterwards, which is backwards to me.  I was in a funk and didn’t want to run at the park.  Tried Glutino English Muffins for pizzas.  I pan fried them in EVOO before making the pizzas.  They were ok, not sure i’ll buy them again (they are nothing like an english muffin in texture or taste).

Thursday:  Been training new staff all day long.  I’m off tomorrow, since I haven’t had a break from work since the 10th.  Not sure what my plans are, other than putting together some goodie bags for LUNA and hopefully sitting by the pool and finishing my book.  Dan’s not back until Saturday afternoon 😦

Headed West

Fail.  Left the camera at home, so there are almost no photos of a great weekend 😦  All crummy cell phone photos.

Headed on down to New Braunfels for dinner and concert at River Road Icehouse.  I was falling asleep at 4:30 pm, so I am not sure how I survived Friday night. Dirty River Boys and Turnpike Troubadours were on the bill.  Got to see a few people I don’t see often enough, including friends from Houston and an old college classmate.

Last person went to bed at 4 am, after backyard partying after the show. Since I was on the couch, I was up until then.  I woke up at 6:30, got coffee, attempted a sad workout on 2.5 hours sleep.  I just can’t sleep past a certain time, so lying around was pointless.

Coffee with my bff who I adore in Gruene the next morning.  LOVE.  Wasn’t long enough.

Our friends from Pennsylvania were in town for the weekend, on their honeymoon.  They made a cross-country drive to Texas and were going to make an extended trip back down the Gulf Coast starting Sunday afternoon.

Then early lunch at hole in the wall Mexican place that I love.  We’d only eaten breakfast there before.  Lunch was a bit greasy, but I liked my food.  Shrimp, chicken, and beef fajitas, with veggies and guacamole.  Not a fan of their guacamole.

Then we headed to the gun range, our friend Erica, visiting from Vegas, wanted to go shoot with Dan.  I slept for 30 minutes on the way out there.  I swear it was 95 degrees already.  I hid under the pavilion, but it was hot as hell under there too.

Then off Luckenbach for the Fest out West.  It was fun, i’d do it again next year.  In years past, they’d had it in West Texas, the region, not the city.  I think it was too far for many people to drive, so this year they had events in Kerrville and Luckenbach, we only did the Luckenbach day.

I hugged the shade.  It was HOT.  It wasn’t miserable, but it was very warm.  I am glad they let you bring in your own water, but I wish I’d brought more.  We missed Dale Watson and anyone before him, but we did catch Reckless Kelly and Robert Earl Keen.  Both bands bring back good memories, especially from college!

And it rained during the encore 🙂  Rejoice!

We eventually headed indoors to the dancehall, it rained slowly for about an hour before we went to dinner, which was pretty much a bust.  There were only 2 places open in Fredericksburg at 9 pm when we headed into town.  We ended up at the Brewing Company.  I guess you shouldn’t expect much when you arrive somewhere 20 minutes before the kitchen closes.  I heard the beer was good, but out of 10 people, I think only 2 thought their food was ok.  I was not one of those 2.

We then headed to the Hilton.  Hahah, not really.  Over to the Stonewall Motel.  Since I was working on 3 hours of sleep total, I went to bed.  Dan and I got the nice room, and apparently the only room that didn’t have issues.  Dig the nautical/blue rose theme?  

The rest of our crew partied on the deck above the office until they were too tired to go any more.

The next morning I read local papers and had coffee at the cafe until everyone else woke up, then headed to a diner for late breakfast before everyone split to go their separate ways.  Good but exhausting weekend!

Things I like Thursday: Shady Grove

How can you beat KGSR’s free live music every Thursday in the summer at Shady Grove? (what’s up with Dan’s blurry photo?)

It seriously can’t be beat (well maybe if it wasn’t 30 miles from our house).  I find it hard to believe we’ve only been once this year!

Dinner was great with 7 buddies before the show.  Although, I have suspected in the past Chuy’s/Shady Grove’s Hatch Green Chile sauce is not gluten free.  Last night pretty much confirmed that.  I am still blown up like an over-inflated balloon and I was itching uncontrollably about an hour after we ate 😦

My chicken cobb salad was divine, although it was not the first meal of the deal i’d had with HB eggs and avocado.  Whatever, it’s good, even better with spice and bacon.  I should have stuck to salsa instead of the green chile sauce, which is ever so heavenly and I always special order.  They brought me about a cup of it and I ate it all.

The show was good, but between the itching and the fact I was cold and it was 90 degrees outside, I was going nuts (stupid thyroid).  It was nice to sit and listen though, I am glad we got there early and got seats, I was too tired to stand.

Got home later than I expected, so I got to bed super late.  4:15 am came way too early.  I hit snooze for an hour and then got dressed and off to work. Needless to say, a long run didn’t happen.  Between not getting enough sleep and still feeling poorly from dinner, I nixed the idea.

I am going to miss the green chile sauce, but man, I won’t miss how it made me feel!

Sunday Funday

Sunday was just awesome, all of the way around.  I felt fabulous mentally and physically!

Hit the gym and probably had the best workout there in a really long time.  I was able to do things I hadn’t done in forever 🙂  It felt so good to be able to knock out a challenging workout and not being completely dead afterwards.

Hit the shower and then off to the Domain for free yoga at Lululemon.  Yes, I showered before yoga, I didn’t want to stink.   No one likes a stinker.  LUNA sponsors the first one every month.  Grabbed some Starbucks and did some people watching while I was waiting for the store to open for Yoga.  Mostly people at some private event at Tiffany’s and others going to get brunch.  The Domain is a large open air upscale shopping area.  Good food, good shopping, and great people watching! I used to live very close when it first opened and would go almost every weekend.

There is all kinds of cool local art throughout too.  This is the children’s area by Starbucks.

Yoga was great, a new place is hosting for July called Wanderlust.  Music + Yoga.  I’m sad I don’t have any more free Sunday mornings to enjoy it.  In fact, I don’t have any more free weekends until like November!  OMG!

After yoga, Dan met me at Zoe’s and we had lunch.  Their salmon kabobs are terrific!  It’s the only one in Austin, I wish they’d build another.  I love their food.  I’ve only had 1 bad experience, which wasn’t enough to stop me from going there.  It’s just not close to work or home at all.

Then off to the movies.  We FINALLY saw Bernie.  We’ve been trying to see it since the day it came out.  For the first 2 months, it was only showing at 1 theater and it was always sold out (drove way down there twice).  It’s currently showing at a few more places.  LOVED IT.  Based on a true story.  Jack Black, Shirley McClaine, and Matthew McConaughey were wonderful.

We never go to the movies, mostly because I am cheap and I think they are expensive.  The tickets are bad enough, but then they rip you off on food too (I don’t eat anything they serve there, but Dan does).  Since we just ate lunch, I figured no additional money would be spent…wrong. I hate spending money on what I consider stupid stuff.  Dan got candy and a giant soda.  *sigh* The same candy is less than a dollar in the same size box at the grocery store!

Then errands and home for chores and PIZZA NIGHT!

Had some fresh mozzarella that needed to be used, so Dan had it on his pizza and he made some caprese skewers.  I hope my basil plant makes it through the summer, we both love basil!  HEB chicken meatballs, all flavors, are awesome.  I love my meat market manager and the fact he always puts them on special sale!

My pizza was on a different crust than Dan’s (his was the pre-made individual crusts).  I used this recipe from Plain Chicken.  I bake it longer and add flax meal to it.  It’s good, not my favorite crust, but it’s gluten-free and I try to avoid pre-packaged gluten-free subs when I can.  Pizza and salad, delish!

Penzey’s salsa salad sprinkles are the bomb.  EVOO plus sprinkles=divine!  I had pepperoni pizza, with lots of veggies.  Forgot mushrooms at the store, which made me super sad.

Before I knew it, it was time for bed!  Good days always seem to fly right by!