Tuesday, September 30, 2014

around here | september

as september winds down and we head into the "busy holiday season", i realize that i didn't do a good job of documenting some of the fun stuff that's been going on around here.

i never posted the first day of school photo for these two.  he's in 7th and she's in 3rd and so far the year has been great for both of them.  he's on a block schedule and taking fencing as his elective.  she is working hard and loves her teacher.

the water polo team had their first game in the new pool.  and they won both games!

jord's been playing a lot more and the team is getting better.  he's scored 8 goals this season, a huge improvement from last year.

she started playing softball 3 weeks ago and is loving it.  we knew she would be good at it but we are so happy she is enjoying being on a team.  she's gotten some good hits and has the biggest cheering section.

another fun gig for encore at guitar merchant.  the kids get better every time they perform.

and of course there's football games and halftime shows.  the band is in transition with a new director but they are doing well.  first halftime show featured songs from pirates of the caribbean and indiana jones.  this friday it's avicii.

got over the hot days last week and enjoying the cooler fall weather, just in time for it to heat up again this weekend.

my sister and i took a calligraphy class and we are having fun playing around with our supplies.  i'll be ready to address holiday cards if anyone wants me to.

and then there was movie night at school.  such a great event on our beautiful campus.  there was a family picnic, games, cake walk, dance-a-thon and cloudy with a chance of meatballs 2.  this is the first event for the new pto board and they rocked it.

the band was asked to play at a taping of a reality tv show at notre dame.  the reveal is top secret but i'll share details when the episode airs.

i volunteered during the junior retreat at notre dame when they visited a senior living facility whose residents have alzheimer's and dimenstia.  it was tough to see but inspirational to watch these young kids help out with feeding, singing and talking to these adults.  their slogan for the 3 day retreat is "let's go make a difference." and i think they did.

bobby and i went to the 3rd grade parent social over the weekend.  the host family went all out with a seafood boil.  we had lobster, crab, shrimp, and clams.  there were biscuits, corn, potatoes and sausages.  the decor was perfect and we left with full bellies. 

working on some of these mini 4x4 albums to document our toronto trip.  and the gold one is for a getaway in november that i'm so excited about.

pushing myself to get back to working out.  i've got a good schedule of running and yoga.  now i have to add some strength training and other cardio.  it's hard to get motivated when i'm not training for a race.

looking forward to october.

Monday, September 29, 2014

2014 weekly menu | #40

bread pudding with kahlua sauce that i made for a school social.
lots of evening events this week which always makes dinner planning that much more important.  what i need to work on this week is prepping so that i'm not rushing when i get home to get dinner on the table.

we have 2 evening meetings, band rehearsal, softball practice, a home football game and the first band parade of the season.  so we will likely not have a meal at home with the five us together.  some weeks are just like that.

weekend eats
saturday: seafood boil for our 3rd grade social
sunday: burgers and hot dogs to celebrate family birthdays

making this week
monday: chicken pomodoro paninis, caesar salad
tuesday: bbq salmon, green beans, mashed potatoes
wednesday: carnitas tacos, salad (moved over from last week)
thursday: vietnamese vermicelli bowl with chicken, spring rolls
friday: home football game

i'm trying to step out of our usual meals and looking for inspiration in other cookbooks, cultures and resources.  there is so much good food to try.

have a great week.

Monday, September 22, 2014

2014 weekly menu | week #39

chocolate chip banana bread for our pto meeting last week.
making some this week for us.
we have definitely fallen off the whole30 program after completing the 30 days in august.  we brought it all back; sugar, dairy, gluten, legumes, and an occasional drink or 2.

this week it's all about figuring out the balance in our life.  enjoying the good stuff but being aware of how we that makes us feel; feeling tired vs. being full of energy, restless sleep vs. a good night's sleep, feeling heavy vs. feeling light.  eating right makes a huge difference and all it takes is awareness and some prep work.

weekend eats
saturday: pizza at our school's movie night
sunday: appetizers at a cocktail party

making this week
monday: seared ahi tuna salad
tuesday: bbq chicken, broccoli and cheddar baked potatoes
wednesday: turkey burgers, oven fries
thursday: carnitas tacos, salad
friday: pizza - if we don't make it to the football game

enjoy your week!

Friday, September 19, 2014

tiff 2014

we had a great time in toronto last week.  it was a whirlwind five days from beginning to end.  we ate well, stayed at a hotel in the center of the city, walked a lot, did some touristy stuff and saw some great movies (and a few celebrity sightings).

it worked out that this trip was the day after our 20th wedding anniversary.  great reason to come along with bobby on his first trip to the film festival. (let's be honest, i wouldn't have missed this for the world.)

we absolutely loved this city.  LOVED! it was clean, and people were nice and we could walk everywhere and it has a subway and lots to do and see and places to eat.  it's funny because in talking with people we know who used to live there we ask, "why did you ever leave?" and the answer was always, "visit in january and you'll know why." ok, maybe too cold for me but we could definitely spend some more warm weather days here.

this was a great moment for bobby in his career. finding a story and producing a movie that made it to the film festival was impressive. and it was so exciting to be a part of something so big.  can i say how proud i am of him?  he worked his way up from an office runner at douglas reuther to becoming a movie producer at furthur films.  it really makes you believe that working hard and being nice to people will pay off.

we only got to see a few movies while we were here.  there were so many movies that we missed.  bobby had an industry pass but he was working most of the weekend.  i had to buy general tickets and those were hard to get or the screenings were not at a convenient time.  but we did manage to see a few.

 boy choir with dustin hoffman.  great film, amazing performance by the lead actor (who we later congratulated when we saw him at our hotel) and written by ben, a screenwriter that is working with bobby on another project.

 whiplash - which was my favorite movie.  the cast and director are pictured above.  it was an intense movie about what it costs to be great. can't wait to take jordan to see it.

this is where i leave you - so funny and screened in this beautiful theater.

 i spent my alone time walking around the festival area and going where the crowds were gathered to see a star step out of the suv.  i caught adam sandler (on video) and jason reitman - pictured above signing autographs.

 people dressed up like movie characters.

the cast of this is where i leave you going into interviews.  we were walking one night and saw stars entering the in style party.  we saw anna kendrick posing for fans and photographers but did not get a good picture of her.

 i scored a seat at the maverick talk with jon stewart while bobby was off coordinating interviews for the film.

he was so funny and genuine talking about his movie rosewater which he wrote and directed.  definitely a highlight to be in the audience for this.  the movie screened after we left toronto.

 but let's face it, the reason we were here and the absolute best moment of the trip was seeing the movie that bobby has worked so hard for on the big screen.  the excitement and nervous energy was palpable.  so many people working to make it a successful event.

michael, jeremy, jb and the tiff interviewer after the screening answering audience questions.

yes, we had reserved seats in the 2,000 seat theater!

sorry no pictures of the intimate after party.  we have to be professional.  but it was fun getting to meet some of the people that bobby spent 3 months with last year.  and i still can't get over talking to michael and him asking me about the kids and school.  he's just a regular guy, right?

i love this picture of bobby watching the director answer questions after a general audience screening.   there were events like this happening all over town.

and here he is with jb after we had drinks at a pub.

in the evening toronto was alive.  people walking everywhere.  great restaurants and atmosphere.  there was rain a downpour one night that had us drenched and running for cover but laughing the entire time.

and there were days that we went back to the hotel in complete exhaustion to skype with the kids and hear about their day. we couldn't wait to get home to them.

of course we went to the top of the cn tower and walked along the glass floor.  not an easy thing to do, especially since i have a serious fear of heights.
the tower was right next to the blue jays' baseball field.  we had hoped to see a game but they didn't play until the night we left.  we also missed going to the hockey museum and taking a tour of the local brewery - although we did have our share of beers.

it was an amazing weekend in an amazing city with an amazing partner.  we are so lucky to have had this opportunity to get away for a few days and celebrate our marriage, to see movies which we love to do and to applaud success which was so worth it.

check out this fun interview for the hollywood reporter.  listen closely at 1:03 when jb mentions bobby's name.

now to wait for the release date...

Thursday, September 18, 2014

food adventures | toronto

there were 3 big reasons for going to toronto: to celebrate our anniversary, to see some movies and to eat.

the first thing i do when i know we're going to a new city is to research places and things to eat.  i got two great lists of restaurants from friends and used yelp to find places when we were out and about.

we ate at a chain restaurant called jack aster's after going to a screening late thursday night.  it was open at 12:30 (which was 9:30pm our time) and it had beer.

we like to go local so i had a canadian and bobby had a steam whistle - which quickly became my go to beer.

they are known for their burgers but we both went with chicken sandwiches instead and a very spicy tomato soup.

for breakfast we typically had coffee and a breakfast sandwich from second cup down the street from our hotel.  nothing special but helped us quickly get on with our day.

the festival street was closed off to traffic so some restaurants offered "festival seating" right on the street with special menus.  we ate at fred's not here on friday afternoon.

i couldn't pass up the lobster and crab soup. i love me some puffed pastry.

and the grilled vegetable flatbread pizza with goat cheese. bobby had the curry shrimp.

and two more local beers. 
lots of meals prior to the screening were spent like this.  he's working and i'm people watching.

based on a recommendation from a friend we went to momfuku. seriously the best name for a restaurant.  it's a noodle bar with a milkbar and it's crazy good.
we ordered pork buns, dan dan mein, 

and the momofuku ramen with pork belly and an egg!

 and for dessert from the milkbar was an order of cereal milk.  it's soft serve ice cream that tastes like the milk you have after you've eaten all your cereal. kind of genius.

 saturday after the screening and after party we had dinner with some friends.  trying to get a table at 9:30 on a saturday night during the film festival was not going to happen.  so we went back to the restaurant where we had the party and politely asked for a table and were told they were completely booked.  so our dear friend allen talked to the manager and reminded her that we just had the after party here and bingo a table was available... complete with complimentary champagne and cocktail.

 the steak and mashed potatoes were incredible.

loved this sign right over our table.

we met up with some friends from school on sunday who were also at tiff with his company.  we are at such a small school yet three of our families were in toronto for the festival.  they have been to the festival before, were staying longer than us to watch a lot more movies, so it was fun to share some of their experiences over chinese food.

 the best meal we had was at jacob's steakhouse on sunday night after the second screening of the movie.  it was a recommendation that we stumbled upon and were not exactly dressed for but no one seemed to mind.

 table side caesar salad was delicious.  we laughed when she asked us if it was ok to put bacon on it.  sister please - bacon is always a yes.

 and you can't go to canada without trying poutine.  their upscale version had potatoes fried in duck fat with foie gras chicken gravy and cheese curds.  unbelievable, but so heavy.

i ordered the fish and bobby ordered a canadian steak.

it came with 3 different types of salt and 3 different sauces. my favorite was the blue cheese spread and bobby was a fan of the soy and ginger sauce.

bobby had spotted the gelato cart outside of another restaurant. so on our walk home we each got a scoop.  nocciola is my favorite.

monday we wanted to get some local coffee so we were directed to little nicky's,  a quaint little shop that sells coffee and house blend espresso drinks and they make their own mini donuts.

best coffee of the trip and the donuts and nutella biscotti were perfect. the kids would have loved this place.

our final toronto meal was at the gabardine in the finical district as we were rushing from one screening to another.  with mismatched plates and cups, a very hipster vibe and some unique menu choices i fell in love with this place.
bobby had the chinese bbq pork sandwich.

and my choice was the fish po'boy with caramelized onions for the win.

it was a lovely spot for lunch and a nice way to bid adieu to toronto.

and now to start the whole30 program all over again.  too much good food!