Monday, May 26, 2014

Week Eighteen - Day Seven: What a week it has been!

This truly has been a crazy week. So crazy, in fact, that I had to look at my calendar to see what I did the first of the week!

Monday started with meeting Susan for breakfast. We ate at a cute little Italian restaurant called Dancing Tomato Caffe. I had an omelet made with provelone cheese and Italian sausage. It was so good!

Tuesday and Wednesday were spent trying to take care of my dad, whose blood pressure has been spiking up, and planning the trip down south for the funeral. Tuesday night I made the decision to leave on Thursday and come home Friday.

Through it all I managed to stay pretty low carb with an occasional bite here and there of "forbidden food!"

Literally, just an occasional bite. Note: See the jerky and nuts on the above graphic? On low carb they are not forbidden. Isn't that awesome?

Thursday arrived and I was ready to go. I met Captain in Elk Grove and had breakfast before hitting the road. My breakfast was sausage and eggs, but they were served over potatoes covered in gravy. Half the sausage and eggs and 90% of the potatoes and gravy went home with him. Yes, I did indulge a bite or two. But you knew that already.

The drive down Highway 99 was uneventful. I did stop in Madera and got a Starbucks as I needed a bit of caffeine.

When I got into the Valley (i.e. San Fernando Valley - this is where real Valley Girls, like me, come from!)...

...I picked up Eric and he took me to dinner. We went to Claim Jumpers. Yes, I absolutely threw caution to the wind and went rogue. Well, not too rogue, but I didn't stick to my low carb.  I had their tri-tip sliders and a bowl of their potato cheddar soup. Thank you for dinner, Eric! It was awesome! (I have a great son. I love him!)

This is a nice Motel 6 - not anything like I stayed in!
I was going to stay with Eric, but circumstances precluded that. He suggested the Motel 6 not too far from him because his dad had stayed there before and it wasn't too bad. Yeah... That was 8 years ago or so. I told the clerk I wanted a very safe room as I was by myself. He said ok, and then proceeded to give me the room at the very front of the motel with the window on the street. Anyone walking along the sidewalk could touch the window! Not only that, it was dark and dirty and smelled like a cat had been using it for a litter box! Refund, please!

I stayed at the Howard Johnson's instead. I got an room inside the courtyard. It was clean, cheery, and had a continental breakfast. Well, their version of a continental breakfast, which consisted of bread for toast, muffins, cereal and coffee. Ugh... No eggs, no fruit. Really? I had to have a bite of something to take my meds with so I opted for a very small muffin.

Now it was time to pick up Eric and head to the funeral. I have to say it was really a beautiful celebration of Lisa's life. It was good to see her siblings and cousins that I haven't seen in 30 years. I cried - a lot - but I am happy she is now out of pain and is looking over all of us. I will miss her so...

Time to come home and traffic leaving the Valley was horrendous!

It took me an hour to go 10 miles. I do not miss the Valley. The only reason to now go back is to visit Eric. How sad that there is almost nothing left for me there. Ten hours and three stops later I was home.

Saturday morning and I am running around like a crazy person because Captain and I have two different events to attend today. But wait! What is that I hear? OMG it's the phone and it's mom. Dad is still having problems with his blood pressure and needs someone to stay with him because she HAS to go to church. I called Captain and told him what was going on and he was okay with it.

An hour and a half later and dad kicked me out of the house. He was feeling better and mom would be home in less than an hour. So off I go!

First stop was Rendez-Vous Winery where they were having the Pick-up Party &  BBQ. Good wines, lovely venue, fabulous food!

After relaxing for an hour or so at Tupelo Coffeehouse we headed up to Mt. Vernon Vineyards for a cave dinner.

This was the menu!

Cave Dinner May 24th, 2014

Course I

Fig Crostini:  Dried Mission Fig garnished with toasted walnut and micro greens gratineed with MT. Tam cheese on sour dough baguette finished with star thistle honey.
Paired with Mt Vernon Barbera
and Butter poached shrimp:  Flavored with Thai basil on a fried crisp with an avocado puree and a Sambal relish.
Paired with Mt Vernon Grenache Blanc

Course II

Salad of Frisee and Baby Spinach:  With toasted hazelnut and goat cheese with a White Balsamic vinaigrette.
Paired with Mt Vernon Cuvee Blanc

Course III

Pan Seared Diver Scallop:  Served on a fava bean puree with Pancetta and a beurre noisette flavored with tarragon.
Paired with Mt Vernon Sangiovese

Course IV

Roasted Duck Breast:  With a fingerling potato mash garnished with braised pearl onion and grilled Swiss Chard, finished with a Bing Cherry glacage.
or Stuffed Savoy Cabbage Leaves:  With Farro, Quinoa, spring onion, pine nuts and asiago cheese on ratatouille flavored with cumin and finished with a vegetable nage.
Paired with Mt Vernon Pinot Noir

Course V

Almond Cake:  Served with a strawberry rhubarb compote, crème anglaise, Chatilly cream and fresh chocolate mint.
Paired with Mt Vernon White Port

An amazing dinner! And as you can see, I did not low carb it!

Six crazy days, and we now come to Sunday. I am home and settled and able to once again get back into my routine.

I have spent the day cleaning out my emails and I did come across a #recipe I want to share with you.  Grain Free Garlic Sandwich Bread!

The #recipe only makes 2 pieces, well actually one long piece that is cut in half, but it is so worth it! I love it!

I mixed up tuna, added mayonnaise and pepperoncini, and made myself two open faced tuna sandwiches, MMMmmm... I did make the garlic version and it went really well with this. Will make it again tonight so I will have one for breakfast tomorrow.

I go back to the doctor on Thursday. I am anxious to see how much more I have lost. When I saw him 10 days ago I still weighed the same. I will take whatever loss I can get!

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