Taking Back My Twenties

Posts Tagged "Friends"

Vegas

Posted on Mar 17, 2014 | 14 comments

Vegas is intense! I can’t believe how many people were there – I arrived and was like, oh, this is where everybody has been all these years!

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I got to our hotel just as the sun was setting on Friday night! I was the last to arrive and it was glorious to walk into a hotel room of friends! My friend Emily was our host for the weekend and she did an amazing job planning everything and getting us on lists so we could skip the lines and the cover charges! She also works for the Las Vegas Sands, so we got a ridiculously low rate at the Palazzo.

We listened to an epic playlist while getting ready and then headed to the lobby for dinner at SushiSamba. I’m not a sushi person, so I never would have picked this on my own, but it was amazing!

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We had wonderful service, excellent cocktails, and delicious food!

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Highlights included the fried plantains and the sea bass skewers!

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And a complimentary cocktail tower!

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After dinner, we headed across the street to the XS club at the Wynn.

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The club was giant and had an awesome outdoor area.

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I had no idea it was going to happen, but David Guetta appeared as the DJ at 2am!!

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He was awesome, and we made our way to the pit to get a better look!

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Most of us east and central time zone people couldn’t sleep in so we grabbed green juice, hit the gym, and got some lunch at the pool. It was a little too chilly for bathing suits, but I enjoyed a nap under a towel in the wonderful sunshine.

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Saturday evening we got all dolled up for our second night on the town (I definitely could not have handled a third night!).

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Our destination was the Cosmopolitan hotel, where we had drinks in the Chandelier bar. Bourbon for me!

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We had dinner at a fantastic restaurant called Rose.Rabbit.Lie at the Cosmopolitan. The menu was all small plates, so we shared a bunch of dishes, and every single thing I tried was phenomenal. The above brussels sprouts with crispy chicken skin were maybe the best I’ve ever had. The coolest part about dinner though, was that our table was backstage and we dined while a show was happening on the other side of the wall. All the performers would come through the dining room, warm-up with a small act/performance, and then enter the stage door.

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We saw so many interesting things, like this upsidedown man!

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Our main event for the night was the Marquee nightclub. One of Emily’s [INCREDIBLY generous] friends got a table for us! It was wonderful to be able to have drinks (and water!!) right there and be able to sit and relax if we wanted too.

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We spent a large portion of the night debating if the man in the black suit in the left-ish part of the picture was Paul Rudd. If it wasn’t, he was an exact look alike!

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We had [too much] champagne and I loved the girls with sparkers who would bring out the bottles. They even changed outfits each time!

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Needless to say, it was a magical night!

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We ended the trip with brunch at Bouchon Bistro.

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I enjoyed a spiced doughnut and a glorious corned beef hash in honor of St. Patrick’s day. I was super impressed with the food in Las Vegas, and I told matt we are going back just to eat.

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A gigantic thank you to my friend Emily for totally spoiling us and bringing us all together!!!

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Hunter Gatherer and Bday Desserts

Posted on Feb 24, 2014 | 6 comments

The weekend was lovely. I hadn’t really seen Matt in a while because of Key West and his weekend soccer tournament plus weekday travel for work. It was wonderful to go on a date! HG Supply has been on our list for quite some time, so we were both really excited to have dinner there. HG stands for hunter gatherer and the menu is Paleo-inspired; the food is simple and clean, and so was the space! I had a fabulous vanilla cinnamon Manhattan in the lively bar while we waited for our table.

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We started with the bacon wrapped pork shanks with chipotle-cider glaze. These were giant and delicious.

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HG Supply is famous for their bowls of flavorful combinations of meat and vegetables. Matt wanted to try ‘The Hunted’ bowl consisting of duck confit, sweet potato hash, spicy broccoli & bacon. We both loved it.

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We also shared the quinoa burger with olive tapenade and hummus. We will definitely be back to HG supply, not just because we liked the food and atmosphere, but because of the chocolate kettlebell that arrived at the table beside us. It was the size of an actual kettlebell and the server poured hot caramel over it to melt the chocolate and reveal a piece of cheesecake inside. It was insane.

After dinner we watched Blackfish, a documentary about killer whales in captivity. I really enjoyed watching it, but also felt really sad about the poor whales and trainers. I dreamed of being one of those trainers after my first visit to SeaWorld when I was little and had no idea that so much information had been kept from the public:(

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Saturday, I baked up a storm! A friend was celebrating her 30th birthday, and I volunteered to make the desserts for the party. I attempted a new recipe for brownie surprise cupcakes, and made an old faithful mint whoopie pie recipe.

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I wouldn’t recommend the brownie surprise – freezing the brownie batter was supposed to keep it from cooking all the way through so that it would remain gooey, but it didn’t work at all. The brownies still cooked until they were dry and cakey. They weren’t bad at all, but I’m just not a chocolate cake person and that’s basically what they tasted like on the inside. The peanut butter icing on top, however, was incredible!!!

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And the whoopies were good!

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The party was awesome – they had one of my favorite wines and a wonderful spread of Mexican food from a local restaurant. I could not stop eating the sweet potato chips with salsa verde!!

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Sunday was nice and relaxing. Matt and I took a long walk to the tennis courts, but were sad to find them packed because of the nice weather. We eventually gave up.

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I picked up some cajun turkey burgers for dinner and we sipped on rose to end the weekend.

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And another week begins.

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Weekend of Friends

Posted on Jan 13, 2014 | 3 comments

Yo,
How’s it going out there?
I had a rejuvenating weekend here in Dallas. We had temperatures in the 70′s and I got that feeling that spring is coming! It made me want to clean the house and shop, but then I remembered it was January and I did neither of those things.
I had a girls date night with my friend Liz on Friday and we tried a new-to-me restaurant called La Duni. It’s a Latin cafe and the prices are so reasonable for the quality of the food. We had mojitos and malbec, and then I had this wonderful mahi entree with fried plantains and garlic rice
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We met Matt for beers afterwards and ending up staying up too late talking! It was my favorite kind of night.
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Matt and I did bootcamp at the gym on Saturday morning and then took a stroll to enjoy the weather and look in some stores. I made the mistake of wearing flip flops and got blisters because I haven’t worn them in months:( We stayed in and cooked for friends on Saturday night – they have a one-year-old, so it’s easier to cook at their house and I made apple pork chops, sweet potatoes, and brussels. It was nice to have a low key evening and it didn’t feel like staying in since we weren’t at home.
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Sunday was a funday of sorts because we celebrated our friends’ engagement with brunch at Sangria. We sat on the patio for two hours drinking bloody marys and catching up with the group. I ordered breakfast tacos with egg and chorizo – they were enjoyable enough, but not anything special. I had dish envy for Matt’s spicy hash.
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The weekend ended with bbq salmon and Golden Globe watching with friends who live in our building.
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It was lovely to spend so much time catching up with different friend groups this weekend! I neglected the apartment a bit, so I need to do some cleaning and get myself organized again. Hope yall had a good one.
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A Nantucket Wedding

Posted on Nov 4, 2013 | 8 comments

We had a fabulous weekend in Nantucket! Matt was in the wedding party for one of his very best friends, so we made a long weekend out of the occasion and rented a house with some of the other groomsmen and their significant others. It was so fun being a guest at an island wedding after hosting one of my own.

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We arrived on Thursday to partake in Halloween festivities. The males were pandas, so naturally the females were panda tamers.

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I spent a lot of time with these lovely ladies while the groomsmen did their thing during the day. We enjoyed a stroll around town and lunch at a brew pub before we got dressed up for an incredible rehearsal dinner at Town Restaurant.

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The scallops were out.of.this.world!!!!! I miss fresh seafood from the Atlantic!

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The whole weekend was grey and rainy, but the sun peaked for like a split second right before the wedding. Despite the weather, the trees in Nantucket were beautiful and I found myself really missing the east coast.

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The groom is so excited to lay eyes of his gorgeous bride here:

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She was stunning!!!!

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The reception was held at a waterfront hotel inside a cozy tent. We warmed up with butternut bisque and dark ‘n stormys during cocktail hour.

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There was no wedding cake, but the phenomenal band made up for it. We danced every second of the reception, including between each course:)

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I had a blast this weekend, but after the commute home, I’m quite happy to be back on the ground in Dallas!!

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Congrats to Oliver and Kinnon!

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Celebrating in New York

Posted on Oct 22, 2013 | 11 comments

Where do I even start? NYC is just so amazing. And the food, oh the food!!

I arrived on Thursday and was able to meet Matt for a quick lunch in Hell’s Kitchen. We dined at a Thai-French fusion cafe called Breeze and scored a little table right on the patio/sidewalk.

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The spicy duck salad and peanut curry shrimp were both tasty and lighter than your typical thai food. Perfect lunch!

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Matt had to get back to work, so I walked the afternoon away. Starting in Hell’s Kitchen, I walked down through Chelsea, and stopped in the market, and then walked through the West Village.

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I eventually made my way to the lower east side and stopped into Babycakes for nourishment. The bakery is gluten free, vegan, and soy-free, so I was really curious to try something. The apple cider donut was absolutely amazing! I took it down in about ten seconds. I saved the cupcake and split it with Matt later that day, but it wasn’t very good (dry, with a weird taste). I want more donuts!

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For dinner, I met a bunch of college friends at Empellon Taqueria in the West Village. The restaurant was dark and intimate, but the loud music made it a bit hard to converse. It was great to catch up though, even if we had to yell:) We enjoyed spicy margaritas, guac, and tacos. My three tacos – chicken verde, wild mushroom, and pastrami were all delish. It’s hard to beat Dallas when it comes to tacos though.

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Friday was my actual birthday, so I slept in and took myself out for a day of exploration. I started with a run along the river and ended up back in the lower east side to pick up a cake.

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I stumbled upon this incredible juice bar and had the best almond milk chai latte of my life. I may move to New York just for this latte.

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I picked up lunch and met Matt in Bryant Park. The weather was 60 and sunny and was just gorgeous birthday weather:)
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We shared a pumpkin sandwich, a quinoa salad, a ginger beer, and a grasshopper cookie from Peacefood Cafe. T’was lovely.
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I spent the afternoon shopping, although everything was too expensive, so it was more like looking. It was just fun to be out and about!

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Once Matt got off work, we kicked off the evening at Gramercy Tavern. We sat at the bar and had the most wonderful service! The bartender comped our first round simply because Matt had to stand up while I was sitting at the bar. Nice! I started with a little bubbly and the moved on to a fall bourbon special.

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Since my favorite restaurants typically involve small plates, I picked ABC Cocina for dinner. It was exactly the vibe I wanted and all the food was fantastic.

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We shared the olives with poblano and mint pesto, which I de-pitted and ate on bread, because that’s how I learned to like them on the honeymoon:)
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Glazed short rib tacos (amazing),
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pepper and potato empanadas,
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maitake mushrooms with fresno pepper vinaigrette, and un-pictured brussels. LOVED this restaurant experience so much!!
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And then, after a 20-block walk home, we got to eat this:
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It’s a carrot cake from Peacefood Cafe, which some reviewers claim is the best carrot cake in the city.
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It.was.so.dense.
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This is definately not your typical carrot cake! There’s pineapple inside! I’m still thinking about it now. We couldn’t even eat a fourth of it on Friday night, but were able to finish off the whole thing by Sunday night.
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Matt got us tickets to see Big Fish! We slept in on Saturday morning, and then went to the matinee show in the afternoon. The costumes and set were wonderful. I loved seeing this because I’m a big fan of the movie.
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Saturday evening was chilly, so I had to layer with random tops! We went to The Ginger Man and warmed up with pumpkin beers after the show.

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And then we had dinner at Craft. The atmosphere was beautiful, although I felt a little out of place at such a nice restaurant. The waitress didn’t help that feeling, as she became annoyed when we only ordered four things. The food was all very unique and perfectly prepared. The portions were really small, although we didn’t care because we knew we had more cake waiting!
Above is the pork with egg and jalapeno and below is the pumpkin ravioli.
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We also had the red snapper in a pepper sauce,
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and more mushrooms (I’m obsessed).
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We declined dessert, but enjoyed mocha marshmallows on the house. The hostess also sent us home with fresh muffins to enjoy the next morning, which was a nice touch.
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I’m sad it’s over, but so, so thankful for a perfect weekend. And so another year begins!
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