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Bridal Shower/Cooking Lesson

Saturday turned out to be a really nice day! I planned on going to the gym but Michael suggested we go for a walk as a family since it was so sunny and kind of warm out. It turned out to be a really lovely walk.

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Not too bad of a calorie burn for a long walk/jog. It was nice to go out as a family, too.

Also over the weekend, it was my cousin Anna’s bridal shower. Her friend Shawna planned a super fun and unique shower for her–a cooking lesson! Her friend Bernadette, who has been a chef in many Portland restaurants and now does some catering on her own, taught a cooking lesson for the shower and it was so much fun!

We were all instructed to bring our favorite recipe for Anna and $10 in one dollar bills…hmmm…what could that be for?? 😉

Turned out there were a few rules for the party. You couldn’t mention the honeymoon, their new house or the fiance by name and if you did you had to put $1 in a jar as a tax. It was a funny idea. The money in the jar was going towards the purchase of a Kitchenaid Mixer for the happy couple. I love that idea!

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There were some snacks out while we mingled. Cheese, fruit, crackers, French bread. Lots of wine, sparkling water and lemon water. It was a big group, too, and my mom drove down and stayed with us overnight so she could go. A bunch of my aunts and cousins were there and it was nice to see everyone.

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We were all told to bring our favorite recipe, too. So we all decorated our recipe cards and put them in a book for Anna. My Grandma sent down her coffee cake recipe (which is the best you’d ever eat) and I put in Michael’s mac n’ cheese recipe in the book.

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The party was at my aunt Sheila’s house and the decorations were adorable.

The cooking instruction started. Dinner was salmon with Asian slaw, zucchini and rice.

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The cooking instruction was really fun and interesting and Bernadette answered questions (some just general cooking questions) and was a good teacher. She walked us through her recipe for the slaw and homemade dressing and recruited Anna to do the mixing:

Then she walked us through making the sauce for the salmon. It was tamari, brown sugar, garlic, red pepper flakes and cornstarch with water.

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We all got to taste the sauce after it thickened up and it was almost like a tangy, tamari caramel sauce. It was SO good!!!

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Here is the finished product:

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The food was absolutely delicious! Shawna is going to email everyone the recipe soon and when I get it I will post it. I definitely want to make that sauce because it was so amazing. I also loved that it was a simple, healthy, low-calorie meal that anyone could make.

After dinner we had dessert. Anna’s mom made a chocolate/whipped cream/walnut dessert and a raspberry cheesecake bar dessert. I had a small piece of both.

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The cooking lesson was a blast and it inspired me to look into some cooking classes in the future. It’s something I’ve done in the past and had fun but never stuck with.

It was such a fun night. I was so glad we all got together and celebrated the upcoming wedding. It’s going to be a blast!

Question: Have you ever had a cooking lesson? What did you learn to cook?

100 Degrees

What a week! Last week was busy. First, we were having a new roof put on our house. So working from home and listening to the banging, clanging, pounding all day and all week was not what I’d call fun. Plus Portland got another heat wave. This time, 100 degrees several days in a row! Ouch. Too hot for me. But at least a few weeks ago we got a new AC, furnace and water heater installed!

Michael’s dad came to visit from Texas and he did not mind the weather. 😉

Thursday after work we went to the Happy Valley food carts for dinner. It was 100 degrees out but we remembered they had an indoor beer garden and we kind of wondered if it would have AC…spoiler alert, it did not have AC. 🙁 It was so so hot! A little too hot for my little guy so we didn’t stay long.

The last (and first) time we were at the Happy Valley food cart station was the weekend before Logan arrived! I was bummed when we arrived this time and the food cart I tried last time was gone. It was SO GOOD and I was planning on getting it again.

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Michael and I both got dinner from the E-San Thai cart. I got the Pad Prik Khing with tofu. It was good and spicy but nothing amazing. I’ve had better dishes at the E-San food cart that is downtown.

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I usually don’t choose tofu but I enjoyed it with the veggies. And of course, my beloved Boneyard IPA:

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I ate about half of my dinner and saved the rest for leftovers. Then we headed home to our air conditioned home! The beer garden was cool and they had a TON of really good beers and ciders on tap. I would have liked to hang around longer and check it out but it was not the day to do that. We’ll go back another time when the weather is a little more pleasant.

Saturday we had planned on going to Hood River for the day but since it was going to be 102 degrees we decided against it. It was just too hot for the baby. So we went out to breakfast to Sckavone’s instead. At 9:30am it was 80 degrees but really pleasant in the shade so we sat outside to enjoy the summer morning.

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I got a DELICIOUS iced coffee that really hit the spot (although I could have used a second one honestly). The three of us ended up getting the same thing for breakfast — the chorizo breakfast bowl. It was black beans, chorizo sausage, scrambled eggs, avocado, pico de gallo, and sour cream.

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It was really tasty and filling. We enjoyed our breakfast outside and then headed home where I went to the gym and the guys watched the Olympics in our air conditioned house.

Saturday we went to an early dinner at Jake’s. It’s a favorite of Michael’s and his dad’s. We went early to avoid the crowds since we were taking Logan with us. First time going to a “real” restaurant (as in, not a kid-friendly restaurant). We figured he’d be ok because most of the time when we take him to restaurants he either sleeps through the whole thing or there’s so much going on around that he’s quiet and just looks around. And he did really well this time, although he was a little more vocal and active this time (of course, right?) but at least he didn’t cry or make noise.

We shared the calamari appetizer (sorry the photo was blurry, I was feeding Logan a bottle while we ate it). And I got a glass of the Malbec. For dinner Michael got the salmon with green beans and potatoes; his dad got the blackened rockfish with zucchini; and here was mine:

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I went “light” and got the house salad with blue cheese and candied walnuts and a cup of the Dungeness Crab bisque (with crab sprinkled on top). It was all very delicious! I’m glad I got the small cup of the bisque, though, because it was VERY rich. I don’t know that I could have eaten more of it.

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Someone was getting a little antsy so I scarfed down the rest of my salad and then took him out of the carseat while the guys finished their dinners.

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He was super fascinated by the paper on the table. We skipped dessert and headed home after that. It was definitely time to get out of there. Overall he did great and didn’t make much noise but it was kind of stressful being at a restaurant that wasn’t fast food with a baby!