Monday, July 20, 2009

Sometimes you just deserve it

Last week we got some unexpected bad news - and seriously people, I am FED UP with bad news. Thatfamily doesn't need any more bad news, we're all full up here. Thatmom is submitting the family for sainthood after all we've been through in the past year.

So this past weekend, I headed up to Thatmom's house for a little spoiling, while Thatboy stayed home to play surfbum with a couple friends who came down for a visit.

Friday I began my assignment of finding a food my 17 year old cat would eat. He's decided he doesn't want to eat anymore....well, he doesn't want to eat catfood. Understandably, he still is a huge fan of cheese, butter, and sugar cookies. We had no success Friday night, but Thatmom said he perked up having me around. Thatmom and my next task was to make dinner, one of her favorites of my recipes - shrimp with peapods. Although, somehow her cooking for me turned into me fixing dinner for the two of us, which is never a problem in my book. After dinner we curled up on the couch and watched Law and Order and cracked each other up. We speak a language, Thatmom and I, that no one else understands, and most of the time doesn't require a word to be said.

Saturday we hit up the mall. I was clutching my cell phone in my little hand all morning because I had gotten a text soon after waking that Sweetcakes was about to start pushing out her little Sweetcupcake. Only my friends text from the hospital bed, seriously! I texted Sisterwife who promised to let me know as soon as Sweetcupcake made her arrival. True to her word, I got the message that both mother and baby did exactly what they were supposed to do and everything worked out perfectly. Satisfied that everything had gone so well, I could concentrate on shopping.

Hearing that I was running low on my summer reading, Thatmom picked me up a little something to read this weekend on our first vacation of the summer:

I am so excited!

Then it was back home for lunch and relaxing till Thatbrother came over to go out to dinner with us. Thatmom had been craving a burger since Friday night, and asked Thatbrother if he knew any gastropubs in the area. As a matter of fact, Thatbrother knew of the perfect location, just around the corner from Thatmom's house.

Thatbrother is a frequent attendee at The Crow Bar for drinks, appetizers, meals, etc. So we let him lead the way with ordering. Although, he didn't know about the secret menu, which we only found out about AFTER our meal. Guess we'll have to go back to try that out! There's a huge selection of wines and beers, so everyone found something to imbibe.

How cute are the plates?

We started out with a huge honking bread plate to go with guessed it! Cheese! You KNOW how Thatfamily is about cheese.

The cheese plate here lets you pick which cheeses you'd like, giving a selection of 12 to choose from. We each picked out a favorite - Remember that "Bermuda triangle" goat cheese I raved about earlier this week? Well, it was on the menu, so I couldn't wait to share it with my family who was as enthralled as I was. Thatmom wanted a cheddar and lucky for us, there was a 12 year aged cheddar from Wisconson on the menu. Thatbrother wanted a sheepsmilk cheese, and so we went with the san andres, which was perfectly nutty - an excellent quality in a cheese.

Thatbrother ordered the ahi burger with green bean "fries" which are really just perfectly grilled green beans. He assured himself that someone else would get the sweet potato fries before going with the green beans, because he couldn't choose one over the other.

When I first looked at the menu for The Crow Bar I was SO excited for the duck fat fries. I'd only heard of these delicacies and they're supposed to be a foodie's dream. Thatbrother warned me I'd be disappointed, but we ordered a side for the table anyway. I was thoroughly underwhelmed. They didn't taste any different than regular fries. Bah!

Thatmom got the burger she'd been craving - topped with two kinds of cheese, tallegio and gorgonzola. She loved the tomato marmelade used instead of ketchup.

At the recommendation of both Thatbrother and the waitress, I tried the Cubano. MMMMMMMM. If the duck fat fries underwhelmed me, this sandwich certainly more than made up for them. The cheese was perfectly melty, the pork loin and nueske ham added just the right about of saltiness, and the pickles gave it the perfect zing. The sweet potato fries far surpassed the duck fat ones!

We stopped off for Red Mango on the way home and watched a movie before Thatbrother headed home.

Sunday we met up with Repro, Nissan, Bass, and Mustang for breakfast.

Back when I was in high school, my friend Philly and I used to grab lunch at this tiny little hole in the wall place, Pacific Whey. It was down the street from our school, and had the most amazing sandwiches. Our little sandwich bakery has since expanded with two other locations. The one we went to on Sunday morning still has great food, but this branch has something the other two locations don't - a view!

After breakfast, Thatmom and I headed to the salon for a little mani-pedi pampering. And then came our other big task for the weekend - Thatmom needed a lounge chair and an umbrella for the back yard. So we began a search of Orange County for a store that still carried either. We didn't have much luck, until we came to Lowe's which not only had a lounge chair, but it was even on sale!

Then we went home where I promptly fell fast asleep. When I woke up, Thatbrother was there and everyone was hungry. Thatmom ordered her favorite meal - pizza. When we went to pick it up, I dragged Thatmom into Riteaid where we found TADA - a patio umbrella. For $35! Missions accomplished.

And since I haven't posted any of my Animal, Vegetable, Miracle recipes in a while, I'll give you one which also serves as a preview of our upcoming weekend trip! I will warn you that this dish really needs rice or something underneath - otherwise it's pretty much soup with chicken in it. But look at those colors! Gorgeous, right?

Chicken Recuerdos de Tucson (recipe available at

Local ingredients used:
tomatoes (from Oceanside farmer's market)
corn (From Oceanside farmer's market)
oregano (From Oceanside farmer's market)
basil (From Oceanside farmer's market)


  1. You are indeed a good daughter. Thatmom must love it when you come over.

  2. I am sad that duck fat fries weren't incredible.

  3. I will plan my next holiday around that burger, they know how to make a plate of food look good!!! Thx for sharing your trip!!

  4. Sounds like the petrfect way to spend a day to me:D

  5. YOU totally deserve it!

  6. I agree - no more bad news for you and your family. My brother and I have discussed the same thing. I'd say we're both good to go with the bad news quotient for some time. :(

  7. I feel the same way about bad news. One can only handle so much :(

  8. i am super bummed over those duck fat fries.