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Gracious Hostesses - trinalin thinks things through
trinalin
trinalin
Gracious Hostesses
Amy & Rachel have been wonderful hostesses. And excellent slave drivers. :-)

Friday night, their friend Melissa joined us (it was her 33rd birthday) and Rachel drove us to the Craftsman Restaurant. This restaurant focuses on using only local ingredients and then making superb dishes with them. A&R and I had surfed their site looking through their menu (and looking terms up on Google and Wikipedia) and had pretty much decided what we wanted. We met seven other people at the restaurant for our birthday gathering.

I decided to start with an amaretto sour and ordered the pork rillettes with crostini, mustard, and pickles as an appetizer, which I shared with A&R and anyone else interested in trying it. It was very yummy! For my entree, I had picked the confit of rabbit leg with creamy polenta and a sauté of greens garnished with a honey gastrique. It was heavenly. And Amy wanted to marry it. The sautéed greens were kale and very yummy. I tasted Amy's order too, braised beef short ribs with spaghetti squash and braised root vegetable. Also yummy and with the best spaghetti squash I'd had. (Amy suspected it was simply seasoned with salt and pepper.) For dessert, I ordered the chocolate boca negra (which came with creme fresh, which I had to scrape off. Blech.) I also had a bite of one of Rachel's cinnamon beignets.

We were at the restaurant for two and a half hours, enjoying the food and the company. I think Melissa had a very nice birthday indeed. I know I enjoyed her birthday! Heh.

Just as we were heading home, Melissa realized she couldn't find her phone. So Rachel pulled over, Amy called the phone - no ringtone in the car. So Rachel drove back to the restaurant. Melissa checked inside all the while Amy dialed and redialed the number. Then Melissa walked down the sidewalk toward where we'd parked earlier in the evening. Sure enough, when we got to where the car had been, there was her cell phone ringing away on the sidewalk. Crisis averted.

We returned to the house and got ready for bed. I worked a bit on coursework and finally went to sleep on the futon in their "den" on the second floor.

The next morning, I got up when Amy & Rachel were getting ready for Rachel to get to work. (Amy had to drive her there). Meanwhile, I decided to get online to check the weather in order to know what to wear. Unfortunately, the USI modem (really an antenna, receiver, amplifier, router) wasn't working. I tried rebooting it a couple of times, but still no go. I found a weather channel on Amy's TV and saw it was going to be a nice day, so picked out my long-sleeve t-shirt instead of one of my sweat shirts.

After my shower, Amy was back so I told her about the tech troubles. She agreed that I should call tech support, so I did. After awhile on hold, I talked with a really nice tech who listened to what I'd told him and didn't have me do all the stuff I'd already done. During some of the tests that I ran on the modem, we had time to chat, so I mentioned it was Amy's new house we were in. He said he had just bought a new house as well - just a month ago. When he needed to talk to Amy to schedule a time for a tech geek to come by, he congratulated her on her new home. Best of all, he was able to schedule a tech guy to come on Sunday between 4 and 8pm. Hooray!

Amy and I then headed off to Trotters Cafe again, this time for breakfast. I ordered the cornmeal pancake that's one of their specialties and a link of sausage, plus milk to drink. Amy ordered their special scramble which had kale and shrooms and thyme. Breakfast was good - I thought the cornmeal pancake was an interesting flavor and even more fun texture. And they have real maple syrup too. I still had milk left after breafast, so I went back to the counter and picked out one of their chocolate mint cookies. Yummy! Rachel finally got her breakfast break and joined us as Amy had a third cup of coffee and I had a bit more water. But eventually we had to stop procrastinating and head off to A&R's old apartment. Amy and I had some cleanin' to do.

Nearly everything was out of the apartment, but it hadn't been cleaned yet. I packed up the router and DSL modem and then began vacuuming the floors. After Amy finished cleaning the bathroom, I mopped the floor of it. Then I took several recyclables out to the various tubs and threw some trash away. After two hours of working, Amy took me out to lunch to Brit's Pub. It was a pleasant day and the walk there was very nice.

At Brit's, I ordered the fish & chips while Amy ordered a fish sandwich and cole slaw. I shared some of my chips with her (they were very tasty but also very plentiful). We had water to drink. I enjoy having beer batter fish and unfortunately there aren't many places where I live that have it. So yay Brit's Pub!

Back at the apartment, we continued cleaning and were nearly done when Rachel joined us, having already worked the morning and bussed home. She thought it would be a good idea if she rode her bike home and maybe we could fit the other bike in the car. Amy and I were pretty sure we couldn't fit it with all the stuff going in, but I offered to ride Amy's bike home with Rachel leading the way. So we packed up Amy's car and I followed Rachel home on Amy's bike.

It was a 2 mile (or so) ride back to the house, and though I'm not in the greatest shape and probably should have put Amy's sit down a smidgen, I managed the ride and didn't feel sore at all today. There was only one time when Rachel got across an intersection while I got stopped, so she waited until I got a green light and we continued on home. It was a nice day to bike ride (though I'm glad I wore my jacket).

The girls napped some while I worked some more on my coursework. Amy told me what her password was to get on the metro wi-fi so I was able to read the class discussions. I got some stuff done for the classes and eventually the girls were ready for me to treat them to supper. I suggested they pick a place they either haven't been to or they liked but don't usually think to go to. They chose a Malaysian place they'd been to once before and really liked.

Peninsula Malaysian Cuisine is a nice restaurant. We started with golden crab meat balls and chicken satay with peanut sauce. Then we shared three entrees: mango tofu (tofu and mango in a sweet sauce), kari sayur (spicy mixed veggies), and the one the girls were most excited about, a Buddhist yam pot ("crisp fried taro nest filled with shrimp, chicken, mushrooms, snow peas, baby corn, & cashews"). Although I didn't care much for the yam pot of the Buddhist yam pot, I enjoyed the pickings a lot. I also had a mango smoothie with black tapioca pearls. There was even some leftover kari sayur for the girls. And the whole meal for the three of us was only slightly more than my solo supper the night before. Heh.

We headed off to Ikea next so the girls could look at curtains and other items. Although we didn't find what they wanted there, we had fun looking at all the cool stuff. I need to take a trip to the Hamilton Ikea with mom one of these days. We then headed to Target for some essentials (and it turns out curtains) and then to a liquor store for a few more essentials.

Once we were home, Amy attached rabbit ears (bought at Target) to their TV so we could get NBC good enough to walk Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live. The hook up went smoothly and they now receive several channels quite well thanks to the antenna. (Only the ABC channel was worse after the hookup. Go figure.) Then we watched SNL and the girls finally headed off to bed.

I stayed up for another hour or so working more on college stuff. But then I, too, returned to the world of sleep.

This morning, I slept in a bit. Amy and I had bagels for breakfast, along with regular and strawberry creme cheese. Rachel was, once again, working at Trotters. I got a lot more work done on my college stuff after breakfast. Then Amy and I made potato & leek soup for lunch. With the bread that Rachel had brought home from work on Friday, it was a very tasty combo. We then spent the day working in the house getting the kitchen sorted out.

When Rachel returned, she also had some soup and declared it good. She also had some cookies from the restaurant - including the mint chocolate ones. Yay! While finishing mine up, the tech from USI arrived, so Amy and I went with him to the den to see things get fixed.

Jeremy was his name, and he started by trying to reset the old modem. It didn't do anything once again, so he swapped it for a new one. He also tested the antenna and was getting 5 bars from it. Considering there are two nodes on either side of Amy's street, that's no surprise. Once he got their modem installed, he also put Amy's router in place and got that set up for her home network. So now we can all geek at once in Amy's house. Yay!

I've been working on this post for most of the afternoon with many distractions. But now I'm nearly done. Yay! We have ordered pizzas from Jakeeno's Pizza, a pizzaria near here, and they'll be delivering soon. Amy and Rachel are sorting out drawer items for the kitchen and I'm getting the occasional "we don't need this anymore" things. Good thing I had plenty of room in my luggage.

This has been a fun visit. It's always lovely to see Amy & Rachel and little Fruvous. And it's especially nice to see their new home.

Oh, and yay, the pizza's just arrived!

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Current Location: Minneapolis, MN
Current Mood: accomplished accomplished

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Comments
rembrandt13 From: rembrandt13 Date: October 20th, 2008 03:56 am (UTC) (Link)
I was prepared this time, and am cooking dinner in the microwave as I type this, cos I knew I'd be hungry by the time I was done reading this! (Dinner happens to be Spinach Bites™, which I completely love but hardly ever get to have, cos they only sell them at Safeway, which necessitates two long bus rides for me to reach).

Yayz for helpful tech boys and rabbit ears! That's what I'm still using too--at least until next February--and especially as an inveterate channel-flipper (my last serious boyfriend knew better than to try and take the remote from me), I'm always annoyed by having to decide if I want to watch the local ABC or NBC affiliates, cos there's no earthly antenna placement that enables me to tune both of them in.

Apropos of absolutely nothing, but last week I thought of you cos I had dug out my old Olivia Newton-John tape--which is considerably older than many of our pals@SMAS, eeks!--and started to laugh at the line in, "If Not For You" about, "Couldn't hear a robin sing," cos in high school, in my full full flush of love for Eric Idle, that always made me think of his Grail character and go all hella-fangirly. Just like perfectchichi and ravenskyewalker reminding me of the distinctly prurient reason why I liked 'The Two Doctors' so much, these old memories have proven to be quite the grist for the ol' comedic mill, at the very least.

Glad you had a good time, in any case, and hope you got home okay...btw, I'm assuming little Fruvous' first name is Moxy? ;)
trinalin From: trinalin Date: October 20th, 2008 02:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
"I was prepared this time, and am cooking dinner in the microwave as I type this, cos I knew I'd be hungry by the time I was done reading this!"

Heh, it's nice having family and friends who love food. And it's fun being a foodie. :-)

"I'm assuming little Fruvous' first name is Moxy?"

Actually, no, his name is just Fruvous (with an umlaut on the first u). But Amy assures me that he does *have* moxy. L-)
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