Saturday, November 27, 2010

This and That on a Saturday

UVA needs to beat Virginia Tech today...not that it'll probably happen, but it would make an excellent ending to their "so so" season.  I mean, you beat Miami, so beat Tech, okay?  I have my UVa hoodie on and everything.

Some parents really need to spend more time in home training their children on proper table etiquette so that when "these parents" take "these children" to upscale dining establishments, they do not act like rabid monsters.

I had my very first Woodchuck Hard Cider last night.  I had the Granny Smith Apple on draft and I paired it with pit cooked, pulled pork barbecue.  It was divine.

This morning I am having a hot raspberry tea.  It is also yummy and warm.  It is not warm outside, although the sun is out.

I am starting to itch for snow.  I can feel it.

The boys and I will be putting up this humongous Christmas tree up in the front living room, which should not be confused with the back living room.  I am thinking about making one of those fabric banners for the fire place that is in this room, which should not be confused with the other two fire places on the first floor.

There will be no use of tinsel this year.  I used enough last year to pay for a small country.  I still relish in the vindictiveness that I ensued from that sparkle event.

I get to have some "Bestie Love" tomorrow.  I love it when I get to spend quality time with my Joyful and my God babies!

I love it when Russia and I have these romantic "walk and talks" through Olde Towne together.  They mean so much to me...especially when they end with hot chocolate and a warm cookie.

I am getting excited for "my other bestie".  Her husband serves in the United States Navy and is returning in December from their first married deployment.  I know the roller coaster of emotions she is on, but I know she is gaining excitement with each and every passing day.  They are going on a two week snow boarding adventure to Oregon upon his return.  She's my physical inspiration.  Myzz runs marathons and is training for triathlons.  She is a beast.

I am really feeling the Christmas spirit.  Are you?

This is Home Girl and I love the twinkling of holiday lights.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Turkey Overload

I hope you all are having a great holiday, long weekend, weekend, just about whatever it is that you might be doing right about now.

I have to go to work today,  I don't mind one bit.  It's a rainy kinda day and I need to go work off a few plates of Thanksgiving goodness serving incredible Italian food to those who are out shopping in the Black Friday Madness.

I had such a wonderful day yesterday.  Russia and I shared the day with his family and it all began here...on the boardwalk in Virginia Beach, Virginia.  This photo is looking North towards the King Neptune Monument.  It was brisk and a little windy, but a lovely day to walk a bit after a huge feast of traditional and non traditional favorites.

Looking South towards the Virginia Beach Pier.  The beach is all decorated for the Holiday Lights Festival where you drive down the boardwalk in your own vehicle looking at the lighted displays.  There was nary a soul out there, but we enjoyed it all just the same.

After feast number 1, we went to Russia's grandmother's home to visit for a bit longer.  She lives in an English Tudor home that was constructed in 1910.  It sits here on the water behind this great big tree on the Elizabeth River.

Feast number 2 was equally as wonderful in Chesapeake, Virginia...just a short car ride away.  We ate until we could not eat any more...I don't think any of us made it to dessert course all day because we were so full.  It was really a fun and love filled day.

After all the feasts, the boys (Russia and Monster), their father, and I went to see Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows...AGAIN.  I am a HP fanatic as is everyone else in the family, so we all agreed it was worth seeing again.  There were only a dozen people in the theater.  We sat in the middle of the balcony all by ourselves.  I might have to admit seeing it again was even better than the first time!!!  After the movie was over, Russia and I strolled the quiet and empty streets of Olde Towne...stopping at The Winter Wonderland at the Courthouse Museum.  This is a very special exhibit featuring some of The Colman Nursery Christmas displays from so many years ago.

I just love this particular photo.  I think it's beautiful.

I feel like the luckiest girl in the world.

This is Home Girl and I don't want turkey for a while.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving to all my wonderful family and friends.  I hope you spend some time today reflecting on what it is that you are thankful for.  I am very grateful for the many blessings in my life.

I am thankful for the ability to make yummy cinnamon rolls which rose so high this high, they overflowed from the pan!  Covered in sweet icing, these pillows of fluffy dough were the perfect beginning to my day...of course, they were accompanied by a French Vanilla Cappuccino.

 I am more than thankful to be back in my homeland of Virginia and for the quaint streets of the Olde Towne Historic District.  I pass by this adorable home everyday on my walk to work...which is approximately 513 steps (not that I have counted or anything).  It is one of my many favorites.  There is a little screened in porch off to the right of the main structure.  I just love little sun porches.

 I am thankful for cobble stoned streets with fall leaves dancing and swishing about.  I love to wear my Uggs while taking a leisurely walk in the evening...I scuff through the leaves making them fly.

It is my greatest hope and prayer that each of you remembers that gratitude is wonderful and that we should all spend a few minutes each day remembering the things that He has blessed us with...not just today, but everyday.

This is Home Girl and I give thanks.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

What a Great Night I Had

Last night,  I went HERE to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1.  We had such a wonderful time.  Russia and I met Monster and their mother at the historic theater in Olde Towne to see this show.  Russia stood in line for 3 hours just to make sure we got reserved dining room seats.  I just love him for doing sweet things like that.  It was just so magical because the Courthouse is all decorated for Winter Wonderland.  There were twinkling lights, music, and the ambiance in OT is right on point for the upcoming holiday season.

The movie was awesome, as expected.  The food was delish.  The time spent with family was priceless.

Today, I am working a 12 hour double.  There is the Grand Illumination Parade in downtown Norfolk, just a short ferry ride from Olde Towne.  I love a good parade and I am a little miffed that I will miss it...but duty calls.

Tomorrow, it is a sew till I drop kinda day.  Literally.  I need to sew all day long.

Well, and maybe make a cheesecake, bake some cookies, and make a nice romantic dinner for myself and my love.

I am craving some rare roast beast.

This is Home Girl asking...what are your weekend plans?

Friday, November 19, 2010

I'm Still Here, I Promise

It is so much harder at my advanced age to get re-adjusted to working a physically demanding job such as running a restaurant from the Front of House.  It has been kicking my butt.

I'm not complaining though.  I love it.  My knees still hate it, but they are at least speaking to me again in a civil manner.

I wish there were more hours in the day.  I have so much to get done and so much I want to do.  Do we all feel like that?

Dear Santa, can you bring me some bionic knee braces for Christmas?

This is Home GIrl and I will try to post some more this weekend.  Love you all.

Friday, November 12, 2010

There Once Was A Squirrel...

who ruined my day.  Well, not really "ruined" my day, but made it complicated.

See, said squirrel, who MUST have been a male...climbed into an electrical substation in the business district of Olde Towne...I am guessing to "get a nut"...and he died by electrocution, thus taking out the WHOLE DARN GRID with him.

This mishap occurred at 9:27 am yesterday.  The power did not come back on until 1:30 pm.  It takes approximately one hour to heat a brick pizza oven to the precise temperature needed for amazing pizza.

Lunch service was gone yesterday.  Completely DONZO.

Damn Squirrel.

True Story.  It only happens in Marlene's World.

This is Home Girl and I am praying for a Squirrel Free Day.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Where has My Extra Time Gone?

This is my one of my favorite chandeliers in this grand home.  I think there is something eerie going on in this room, too.  I don't mean eerie in a bad way...just odd.  I know there are spirits all over Olde Towne and most are "good spirits".  The vibe in this room is very feminine and calming.  This is the room where I sew.  I feel welcomed and I like that.

There is also this lovely fireplace right next to where I stitch.  I know....right?  I have plans on sitting here every evening for the next few weeks sewing my little hands off.  I have lots and lots of things planned and I will share them with you as I go.  I can not believe that Christmas is quickly approaching.  It will be upon us before we know it.


Life is good.  I am so happy to be working in a career that I adore.  It's hard work, but I have never been shy of doing what I need to do to make it.  I may not have had the self confidence that I do now, but that's okay.  I have accepted that life is a constant learning process and sometimes it's lessons come quickly and sometimes I must repeat them several times in order to grasp the concept.


I listen to my teachers.  I really do.


This is Home Girl and I am a great student of this thing called life.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

This and That Thursday by Mental Pause Mama

It rained yesterday.  That usually mean a slow day in a restaurant, but not for me.  We were super busy and it would. not. stop.  That's a good thing for money, but not so good when you can not even take a break to go to the bathroom or something.  It does make the day fly by though.  My knees are completely disagreeing with me.

It's going to rain again today.

It will be at least another week before my knees are talking to me again.  They are really not happy that the restaurant's kitchen is upstairs from the dining room.

You read that right...the kitchen is upstairs from the dining room.  Our store is in an old Savings and Loan building.  It is the coolest thing ever.  The original bank vault is still there and operational.

The food is amazing.  I will have some photos to share with you soon.  Neo-classical Italian or Nouveau Italian main fare, but authentic New York / Sicialian Style, hand tossed, pizza cooked in a tiled pizza oven.  The toppings are varied and unusual.   Ever had a duck con fit pizza?  Eggplant Rollitos?  Spinach and Ricotta Empanada's?

The newest Harry Potter movie starts on November 19th.  Can't wait!

Have you ever had a Barbecue Pizza?  I have.  It makes me laugh because it is named a Texas Pizza on the menu, but having been in Texas recently, I "know" barbecue means "beef", not honey glazed, pulled pork tenderloin, which is what ours is.  I think a name change is in order.

I am working my way through the Olde Towne Dessert Menu's.  There are more than 40 restaurants in a 2 mile radius, no franchised stores...I felt it was my personal quest to try them all.  Last night, I had an apple cobbler, baked hot with oatmeal crumbs buttery and crispy on top.  There was this sublime Frangelica and Caramel sauce and cream.  Yes, there was.  I think it will be one of my winter time favorites.

I may even be able to copy cat this dish and present you with a recipe.  It will require more testing.  It would be my honor to do this for you.

This is Home Girl, wishing you a happy Thursday!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Fun Filled Weekend!!

I wanted to quickly post some pictures from this past weekend.   I am exhausted, no doubt...from working full time again and having a jammed packed weekend.  There was working in this amazing restaurant where the food really is top notch,  Ghost Walks with a bestie/blister of mine, there was relaxing with the boys on a Fall evening, there was wine called Playmate by Fetish (such a yummy Moscato), there was Pumpkin Maple Cinnamon Rolls made from scratch, and more than 300 trick or treater's in one night to cap it all off.  I love it!  I remembered some time this morning... that last year, on Halloween, was the day that Hard Working Man and I broke up.  I didn't give it much thought, really...just sort of a remembrance.

I have learned so much in the past year.  Break ups can sometimes be the best thing for a person.  I get that now.

Notice all the Milk Duds are g.o.n.e  

Getting ready for the onslaught.  Olde Towne is the place to be on Halloween!!  

The House Witch...the little rat was "the boys" suggestion.  

Would I do it again? your life on it.

This is Home Girl and those Wahoo's beat some Miami butt!!!