Weekend Fun

Happy Wednesday!  How is the post weekend fun on Wednesday, you ask? Because I’m just getting to the post!! 😂

Hubs and I managed a little get away his past weekend.  This was all planned prior to Hurricane Matthew. Fortunately, the Tampa Bay Area only got some wind and rain- nothing atypical for rainy season.

Hubs did well once again and booked us at the Epicurean Hotel in our SoHo (Historic Hyde Park).  One of our favorite resturants, Haven, is in the area, but we have never stayed the weekend, so this was a treat! 

How cute is room??? Can I have my room like this??? 

Coffee and Spirits bar….

Our favorite…vodka! 

Hubs planning attack…of food and bar! 😂

We decided to go down to Élevage to see what they had to offer.  We sat at the bar for happy hour and snacks..

…and of courseVodka! 

Saturday night we returned to Élevage but for dinner. I had the best tomato soup EVER for an appetizer It was a roasted tomato soup with fregola (a type of pasta from Sardinia) and baby tomatoes.  The bowl was brought to the table and poured hot (over the fregola and tomatoes) from a ceramic container at the table.  And those 3 thingys in the soup?? Grilled cheese soldiers! A nouveau twist on a timeless classic! 

Hubs and I decided in the dinner for two:

Dry aged Porterhouse steak (from Bern’s right across the street) with horseradish potatoes, pork belly creamed spinach and onion rings.  A side of a Cabernet – Rosemary steak sauce completed the meal. Wow…..was a THAT to die for!!! 

As if dinner wasn’t enough, across the plaza within the hotel, is a dessert place Chocolate Pi.Note the symbol for Pi and not the traditional pie! Love it!! Ready to see what kind of trouble we got in here????Clockwise: Wedding cupcake with vanilla bean frosting; cookie dough macaroons; dark chocolate Bon Bons; milk chocolate and peanut butter Bon Bons.


We ended our evening indulgence at the hotel’s roof top bar EdgeI wish my phone could have shown you the night view from the roof! Maybe when I get that iPhone 7… Hint hint!! 

Sunday brought brunch at the same restaurant (guess we liked it,huh?)Bon Jour, Croque Monsieur! Have you had or heard of this dish? It’s ham, brioche and mornay (Béchemel sauce with Gruyère cheese). Oh.em.GEE! Topped with some mixed greens! It was an instant favorite! 

Overall, you can see we had a great weekend together.  If you are in the Tampa Bay Area, make your way to Historic Hyde Park and see these places and more!

We LOVED it!!

Thanks for reading! ❤️

A Different Family Outing….

Having kids sometimes means ENDLESS trips to theme parks (or theme park LIKE places!) I don’t mind them, but sometimes, I just want something else.  My hubby and I, being former band geeks, decided to take them to see the Florida Orchestra.  They perform in many locations in the Tampa Bay Area. We saw them at  The Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg. So, we got dressed up (love THAT!!) and went to get our “culture” ON!

It was a 2 pm show and we had the perfect seats…6  rows away from the orchestra.  I forgot how much I used to LOVE being on stage with our high school Symphonic Band (at Miami Southridge Senior HS…..”Go Spartans!!!”). Little known family band geek facts:

  •  I played the flute, piccolo,oboe, and English horn. I started on the flute in 8th grade and the oboe in 10th grade. I played all the way through HS and loved every second of it.  
  • Hubs was a percussionist- snare drum, tri-toms (3 drums) and quads (4 drums)
  • We both played in our Junior High and Senior High Concert/Symphonic bands AND marching bands.

Back to the orchestra..:the view from our seats was second to none!

Isn’t it nice?? 

What made this performance EXTRA special was they played music from the composer John Williams.  You know…..Star Wars, Super Man, Jaws…?  MOVIE  MUSIC from ALL the biggies! My kids LOVE his music because they listen to one of the CDs of the Boston Pops playing his music!  PLUS….they really enjoy the movies. (They were both born in the WRONG decade, I swear!!!) 

The conductor gave us tidbits of info about John Williams, his music, his accomplishments (nominated over 40 times for an Academy Award and has won 4 times, for example), and future projects (new Star Wars movie score!!! #geek).  

During the intermission, the theme carried through….

EVERYONE gets to take a picture with Chewy and the ultimate villain, Darth Vader, right? 😉

This violinist played the most BEAUTIFUL solo from “Schindler’s List“. (A movie I have yet to see, but definitely still in my list!).  There was also a double solo, clarinet and accordion (believe it or not) called “Viktor’s Tale” from “The Terminal“. AMAZING!!!

My favorite ? (Because I can hear you asking….) “Episode I: The Phantom Menace: IV. Duel of the Fates“.  O.M.G!! That’s all I’m gonna say……..

Oh…the encore piece??? The theme from “Indiana Jones“. How can end the evening any better??? #drjones

The Florida Orchestra plays MANY different shows and their season is chock full of different composers (both classical and contemporary). If you have an opportunity, I highly recommend you see them.

Theses kiddos were happy and it didn’t involve getting on a ride……

Aidan (front) smiles too much and Julian (back) doesn’t smile enough! 


What other activities do you do with your kids that ISN’T a theme park?

What kind of music would you like to hear an orchestra play?

You signed up for WHAT……??????

Not to rip off one of my favorite blogs but that’s exactly what I was thinking when I decided to sign up for another race. Not just any race…I slipped and bumped my head and signed up for a 15k!! WHAT????

Here’s the story….Gasparilla is a race in Tampa Bay that I look forward to every year.

I did race last year because of my shin injury, so not surprisingly, I’d sign up this year. Since I fancy myself a 10k’er now (yeah…right!), I wanted to sign up for another one. I’ve usually done the 5k, but I didn’t want to revisit the distance for a few reasons:

1. I want to keep pushing myself. And if I continue to “just do” 5ks, I’ll never be challenged to do anything else, but that distance. I’m not knocking times out the park, or anything. And I am/was quite comfy in 5k land, but my running shorts weren’t! You get it??? (In case you didn’t….I was in a stand still with the weight! ). So…I continue to challenge myself!

2. At minimum there are usually about 9 BAZILLION 9000 (or more) people that run the 5k in Gasparilla every year. This is NOT a race for people, like me, who want to improve SOME time. There are just too many people. It’s fun…and its a workout…but I think I’m looking for more.
Just an idea…LOOK at this! This is a good depiction of the what the 5k looks like…😁


This leads me to the registration page. I’m looking…I’m scrolling…I don’t see it. I see 5k, 8k, 15k, and Half Marathon. WTF happened to the 10k?? Where did it go?? Well, I missed a year and I FORGOT the race GODS replaced the 10k with an 8k. What’s a girl to do???. Well, I figured that doing the 8k would make me FEEL like I was going backwards. This in reality isn’t true because I only have ONE 10k under my belt…..

I guess I was feeling “all proud” of myself because I pulled the trigger…and signed up for the 15k. 😁
What I am I thinking?? I have no experience…I don’t think I have time to train…I don’t think I can DO IT!
That’s the doubtful part of my brain. The other part thinks about the experience…how GREAT it would be to have added a distance to my running resume….how I would be 4 miles from a HALF MARATHON!! It all makes me feel INVINCIBLE!

So…I WILL do the 15k. I WILL fit in some training (to the best of my ability and schedule). I WILL feel like I can do it!

Ever signed up for something that we were SCARED to do?