Posts tagged ‘fun’

December 16, 2010

Birthday Bonanza

Sorry for the lag on blog-posting. I needed a bit of extra time for optimum post-birthday recovery. This could have been the reason why…

A great pick from Trader Joe's wine selection

Since Lauren and I are new to the “real job” scene, as full-time office employees, and skipping responsibilities means more now than just ditching class or procrastinating on a paper, I’d never really thought about working on my birthday! Apparently everyone does it. Its no secret in the workplace. Well, as I shuffled off to work for the day, thinking it would feel like normal, I was in for a treat!

After a great day at work, filled with birthday bagels, lots of homemade goodies, and a definite sugar overload, it was time to start the celebrations. A few co-workers treated me to a glass of wine and delicious appetizers at Donovon’s. They were passing around tender steak sandwiches, which paired wonderfully with my glass of a rustic spicy merlot. We all shared a strawberry-garnished crème brulee, speckled with fresh vanilla bean.

Dinner was next on the festivity schedule.

Choosing the location wasn’t an easy task when there are so many amazing restaurants that San Diego has to offer. I chose Lupi Cucina, which is a cozy little place, situated a few blocks from the ocean on a pretty lit-up La Jolla street. We ordered a bottle of Sangiovese Wine to accompany the following delicious Italian dishes that were favorites at the table:

Chrissy's dish

  • Tortelloni verdi ai porcinispinach pasta stuffed with seasonal vegetables, scamorza cheese, fresh porcini mushroom cream sauce

Lauren's dish

  • Agnolotti alla giudeapasta stuffed with artichoke hearts, cannellini beans, scamorza cheese, roasted tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil

Amanda's Pizza. Each quarter was a different "season" with its own topping!

  • Quattro stagioni (Pizza)artichoke hearts, mushrooms, tomatoes and olives


And then dessert arrived, a perfectly fluffy piece of gourmet Tiramisu…


This decadent Tiramisu, topped with a candle didn’t last very long looking pretty on that plate though; there were plenty of spoons in on the action. Lauren had also picked up some really tasty gourmet mini cupcakes (chocolate sprinkled with sea salt, classic black & white, and chocolate with caramel butter cream) from TJ’s earlier that day and brought them along—it was such a good idea, since ordering desserts can get pricey.

"Divine Nine" Cupcakes from Trader Joe's

All in all, it was a really great birthday, full of fun memories and accompanied by great friends! Thanks everyone!

From the Little Yellow Kitchen


Heidi, Chrissy, Lauren, Amanda, Chelsey, Katie, Shelbi (Left to Right)

The Best Birthday Dessert!

December 8, 2010

Bringin’ it back…Christmas style

What’s better than building a genuine gingerbread house while listening to the Transiberian Orchestra (holiday edition) station on Pandora, to get you in the mood for the Christmas season?! Nothing! It was so much fun, especially the part when I “accidentally” tossed about 200 sprinkles into the air, in a failed attempt to add some color. Needless to say, we made quite a mess but it really brought me back to my younger years. My six cousins, my brother, and I used spend a weekend at grandma and grandpa’s building gingerbread houses at this time of year, now THAT was a mess. This year, I was inspired to kick off the season by a sudden urge to buy Christmas decorations for our little home on my lunch break. Believe it or not, Rite-Aid had some awesome décor for half-off. With the lights, snowman, Santa Clause and wreath in place we set out to construct a gingerbread house.


Chris and Lauren

Confession of Christmaholics: We cheated and bought a neat little kit at Trader Joe’s – FYI, we usually refer to it as TJs, not to be confused with the town an hour south of us, Tijuana. Turns out, their gingerbread doesn’t taste that great but once it’s looking pretty, who wants to eat it anyways? After getting the best tricep workout of my life whipping the egg whites (not having a KitchenAid really forces you to break a sweat), we added the powder sugar the kit provided and a few drops of lemon juice to help with the stick factor. The kit came with little snow people and a tiny dog—adorable. The included candy décor was very limited so we added our usual zest and improvised with some chocolate chips we had on hand. Not the prettiest little house I’ve ever seen but it definitely got the Christmas spirit running through my veins! Next time, we’ll bake our own gingerbread…

Our little Christmas home

From the Little Yellow Kitchen,