Can you believe it? It’s April already! At last, the weather is finally bringing hope that spring is here… which <cross your fingers> means no more snow. Yay!
Let’s close out March by recapping this past, very busy, weekend.
After a very long day at work for the both of us, my mom and I hopped on the CTA train stop near our work and made way down to Chicago to meet two of her former co-workers for dinner at one of my very favorite places, Japonais.
I grabbed a little pick-me-up for the ride. Starbucks Iced Coffee, first one of the season! :)
We arrived before the others so we both enjoyed a glass of wine in the downstairs lounge/bar.
Once everyone arrived and we were seated, we ordered edamame and ‘The Rock’ appetizer. As the menu describes it, The Rock is “thinly sliced marinated new york strip, cooked on a hot rock presentation.” The rock, on the left, is served screaming hot and the marinated steak, on the right, is served raw. The way it works is to take a single piece of steak and lay it over the hot rock to cook for a few seconds on each side.
Not only is the steak juicy and very flavorful, it’s a fun, hands-on appetizer which makes it even better in my book! Definitely one of my favs! We rounded out our meal with a few yummy sushi rolls.
As planned, I woke up and brought my training run outside to enjoy the beautiful weather. The fresh air definitely beats a stuffy gym and I can’t wait to continue the rest of my training outside!
Breakfast was an old standby: Greek yogurt, bananas, blackberries, a giant scoop of drippy almond butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon. My grandiose plans to cook a hot breakfast of pancakes quickly subsided when I realized I had very little time before I needed to get moving on the day. BUT my yogurt bowl never fails to be quick and absolutely delicious!
Now since I got my run in earlier, it was only fair that Mac also get his exercise for the day.
Quick trip to the dog park to release all that puppy energy stored up overnight. Saturday morning, especially with nice weather, is a popular time as there were upwards of around 30 dogs. Note to self – more dogs = sleepier Mac.
I dropped off Mac with “grandpa” (my dad :) ) and they went on a longgg, walk at the forest preserve – almost 2 hours! – while my mom and I went to a baby shower for my cousin, Brittany. She is happily expecting a baby boy, Lucas, by the end of April. So excited!!
I was not very on top of my game with pictures but I did manage to snap one of this cute ladybug appetizer that Brittany’s friend made.
Zoomed-in grainy IPhone pic to see the details: Ritz crackers topped with a smear of garlic dip for the base, halved grape tomatoes (wings) and half of a black olive with snips of chives (head & antennas). Plus she dyed some extra garlic dip to make black spots on the wings.
Very cute and creative! Love that kind of stuff. :)
Afterwards, I picked up a very worn out Mac to make our way home and get some house cleaning done. Since it was Easter weekend, lots of our friends were back in the suburbs to spend time with family so we had several people over at night to hang out. We enjoyed a few drinks before calling it an early Saturday night around 11pm.
Before heading over to Dave’s parents’ house, we took Mac to the dog park again and I baked some cookies.
Cranberry white chocolate macadamia nut cookies!
I followed this recipe and added the macadamia nuts for good measure. :)
My parents joined us over at Dave’s parents’ and we had a delicious Easter meal of turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, asparagus, and pretzel rolls. Great way to end the weekend!