Thursday, December 30, 2010

Our boys and their Sweet girls!

Our Ranger is home on leave before his next deployment, (which I'm
working very hard to ignore) and he's brought home someone special to
meet us! This evening we had both our sons and their sweet girls out
to dinner. And, that means it's been pretty happy days around here!
William and his Julie... 
 And, Brandon with his Jenna!

Somebody is Very happy!

Now that we're back home, it's been an awesome couple of days for Bing!
Although he's never been boarded at a kennel, and instead gets to stay
at home where our amazing neighbor not only feeds him but also comes in
just to, love on him, as she says, Bing hates it when we go away. And, this last
time was no different! Evidently, it was eleven very lonely days for our Bingee...
We noticed immediately that his little voice was much
deeper... Likely from hours and hours spent calling for us
There was also no ignoring us for a few days as punishment!
Nope! Bing has been all over us since we walked in the door on Tuesday...
Which suits me just fine!
There's still snow on the ground, the Ranger is home on leave and The 100 greatest
One-Hit Wonders of the 80's is on VH-1, which means it's Bing-and-me snuggle time!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Don't miss Tupelo Honey Cafe in Asheville!

You are going to be so angry with me after you take in this post! Angry
because I've withheld this information from you for so long, that is! I
mean, honestly... So far, this dining experience ranks as the best-ever
experience born from a recommendation by a friend wishing to pass
on information about where to eat in Asheville. Not even a second
passed after I announced that we were headed to Asheville for our
anniversary before SpaBoy said, You can't miss Tupelo Honey!  
downtown on College and the new location, which accepts reservations. So we
made one, and then headed for Asheville early on Sunday morning with a plan to
enjoy lunch at THC. Now if you know me you know I've never, ever eaten grits...
But since moving to the South, I have grown quite fond of good fried green tomatoes...
So when we noticed Fried green tomatoes over grits on the menu we decided
to share! Grits for him, and a couple of fried greenies for me was our plan...
Unfortunately for him, these grits were made with creamy goat cheese, and
sprinkled with fresh basil. So in the end... The man I love got very little grits!
All I can tell you is that THC has spoiled me forever with their grits! I will either
discover other grits I love or I will find that the only grits on the planet worthy
are those served at Tupelo Honey in Asheville. Either way, I'm on a grits kick!
 We went a little crazy after the FGT and ordered the Cheesy Grit Cakes. Stuffed
with a blend of cheeses and drizzled with a spicy red chili sauce - yum! And, although
I do realize it's like comparing apples to oranges, I preferred the goat cheese grits
over this fried version. However, I am an absolute sucker for a good salsa, and
you already know my passion for organically grown anything... Therefore,
the Sunshot Farms salsa served with the grit cakes was to die for! 
 You simply must know about Sunshot Organics so stop and click right here!
Pretty amazing, huh!? Speaking of amazing... See that biscuit up there? At THC,
those fluffy babies arrive to your table complimentary! Drizzled with honey and
topped with THC's very own homemade black raspberry preserves... Heaven!
Other heavenly appetizers we ordered, (yes... we sampled almost all the
appetizers/sides on the menu and still ordered a main course!) was the
scratch-made mac and cheese and the candied ginger cornbread muffins
with whipped peach butter. Yes... My eyeballs did roll back into my head!
 After our appetizers we excused ourselves for a quick 3-mile run to make
room for the sandwiches we ordered. Normally he wouldn't order a burger
however, at THC they serve no ordinary burgers! This is one-half pound
of grass-fed, pasture raised, hormone and antibiotic- free beef provided
to THC by, Hickory Nut Gap Farm in Asheville. And it is the best!   
 Served with sweet potato fries! Now, I would normally not order fried-anything...
After all, I've been humming along on the CLEAN program since June 1st, and I
have also thoroughly been enjoying all the benefits that come along with losing
almost ninety pounds... However, this was a very special trip, and I attended
extra Spin classes especially for this occasion! So I ordered the Southern
Fried Chicken BLT. Made with free-range chicken, topped with maple
peppered bacon and served on a hand-crafted artisan bun. No words!  
  Our meal at Tupelo Honey Cafe, along with the service and atmosphere
far, far exceeded our expectations! The fact that they are dedicated to the
support of local farms and suppliers and that they serve creative and
innovative dishes just put the whole experience over the top!

Just in case you're wondering... THC doesn't know I exist. And, I wasn't paid or compensated in any other way for telling you about them. I wrote this review just to
ensure that you don't visit Asheville six times, like we did, before you get to eat the
best food available in that area! Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to the THC on-
line store for some of their goodies to enjoy at home!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


And, just like that... 
 We're not in sunny Monterey California any more!
But we are home...
Back in our own four walls again, and with Bing snuggled up next to us...
Ready to bring in a New and an even better year!
Thanks, Mom and Dad - We love and miss you!

Monday, December 27, 2010

The City by the Bay!

We're in the City by the Bay!
 Because we have a midnight flight home out of San Francisco...
Which means I've left both my hearts in San Francisco!
And, I left my considerable Wish-list on Union Square!
Oh... Make that three hearts!
I believe... Do you?
If not... This is the place to start!
All the favorites live here!
We arrived with one checked bag. And, we're leaving with two checked
bags. Plus two additional carry-on bags we hope USAir won't notice!
Which means there will be no shopping for me at Neiman's!
So after Union Square we wandered through China Town...
And then we hiked up and over to Powell...
And, then back down again!
We saw the Transamerica Pyramid again!
Then we watched the sunset on Union Square
 When you're in San Francisco, there's no mistaking it!
We worked up quite an appetite on our hike so we headed to Fisherman's Wharf
For dinner!
Best sourdough bread, Chowder and sandwiches in San Francisco!
Who knew?
Next time we chat, it'll be on East-coast time. Until then... Sleep tight!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

You shoot, we'll Shop!

While mom and I hit the after-Christmas sales in Carmel
and Monterey, the guys spent a little time on the range
Dad has quite the weapons collection...
Which is just fine with the Ranger!

After they were done at the range we met at San Carlos Cathedral - Our church!
Next to the Carmel Mission, it's my favorite!

There's Renew! See him the last time we visited here
Not too crazy about the Mexican flag being flown... But there it is!