A funny weekend recap
Hello, everyone! How was your weekend and final farewell to September 2012? Mine was super! September was a beautiful month, but I am happy to see it go and move on to October! So many awesome things are happening this month!
A few weekend highlights:
A few weeks back, Clayton surprised me with tickets to see Saturday Night Live alum Tim Meadows at our local comedy club, The Comedy Attic. Clay was excited to see one of his SNL favorites and I was excited because, come on, he was in Mean Girls! But only five days before the show, we were notified that Tim Meadows had to cancel at the last minute and Greg Behrendt had graciously offered to take his place. Honestly, I was not impressed with the replacement choice and was casting my vote to just get our money back. I only knew Greg Behrendt at the author of He’s Just Not That Into You and if you ask me, that book didn’t sound like it was very funny (and I hated the movie. Bradley Cooper cheating on Jennifer Connolly STILL upsets me).
But at Clayton’s urging I agreed to go to the show anyway and chose to believe The Comedy Attic’s promise that Behrendt was a pretty decent stand-up comedian.
I AM SO GLAD WE WENT! Greg Behrendt was not only funny, he was hilarious. He even openly discussed how writing his best-selling relationship self-help book almost kept him from his true passion of stand-up comedy, and it’s clear that his calling is to make people laugh rather than give them relationship advice. I was in tears on several occasions and was having such a good time that I didn’t even let the mouth breather crammed into the chair next to me get on my nerves (a stranger, not Clayton).
Before the comedy show, Clayton took me out to dinner at a restaurant neither us had never been to, but heard was delicious. Finch’s is rated one of Bloomington’s best restaurants and we were eager to try something new and different. Though the menu was rather limited, their pizza was out of this world! (They have a brick oven in the middle of the cozy dining area). Many of the dinner entrées were pricey, so we agreed to share a margherita pizza and an order of brick oven macaroni and cheese (You all remember how much I pine for Sweet Grass’s pimento mac n’ cheese. It’s crazy how much I order this dish out nowadays because I’ve always been the kind of girl who disliked anything that didn’t come from a blue box with "Kraft" printed on the front.) The macaroni and cheese’s crumb crust was crunchy and the cheesy interior could only be described as creamy perfection. I was legitimately sad when it was gone.
I also became smitten with perhaps the best wine I’ve ever had in my entire life! I tend to only drink beer and whiskey these days (except for my semi-weekly bottles of champagne I buy to celebrate how much I love champagne), so I oftentimes forget how much I enjoy a glass of wine. I’m a dry wine kind of girl, so I ordered a glass of Presecco Brut Minoette. It’s a slightly carbonated wine that tastes exactly like brut champagne, so of course I liked it! I even mistakenly called the wine champagne when I ordered a glass, but the waiter corrected me and said it was what is called a bubbly wine. Regardless, if one glass wasn’t more expensive than an entire bottle of champagne I normally buy myself at home, I would have had seconds.
Sunday afternoon I participated in yet another trail race (I’m growing quite fond of them!) in McCormick’s Creek State Park, just outside of town. The aptly named Friends of McCormick Creek Trail Run was a 4 mile course that zipped through wooded trails and a grassy cross country course … in a crazy series of elevation changes. Though I’d never say this course was as difficult as the Vines Pines and Inclines’ Hill of Death, the constant uphill/downhill wore me out in a hurry! I finished the race in 34:41 and placed 3rd overall in my age group.
It was during this race that I realized that I transform into a pregnant woman when I do trail runs. The second any race begins, I suddenly have to pee, the constant terrain shifts give me motion sickness, and strong odors make me want to vomit. An older gentleman who spent about 80% of the race running directly in front of me had clearly dove into a pool of Old Spice before the race, and every inhale of breath brought me closer and closer to barfing. I finally had to waste precious energy in order to pass him before I passed out. All I could think of the entire race was how thankful I was that I turned down Clayton’s offer of a hot dog right before we left the house. Blech!
Since I’m in the midst of training for a half marathon, I was scheduled to run many more than 4 miles on Sunday. In order to reach my scheduled distance of 10 miles, I went home immediately after the race to run 6 more. I can’t even believe I was able to do it. My legs were exhausted and my energy stores were completely depleted from running hills and trying not to gag on the smell of old man cologne. Believing in the power of positive affirmations, I kept telling myself, “You’re a beast! You’re a beast! Keep moving!” But with each mile I was feeling less like a beast and more like a wounded Chihuahua. Any yet, I somehow managed to keep my half marathon goal pace.
Then I went home and stuffed my face.
I made shredded bbq chicken in the crockpot and planned on a yummy quinoa side dish that I had found during a random internet recipe search. However, when I went grocery shopping the day before, I failed to realize that Wal-mart doesn’t actually sell quinoa. Scrambling for something to serve with our bbq chicken sandwiches, I improvised and created my very own pasta salad recipe!
I’ve never made pasta salad before (mostly because I hate pasta salad), but I decided to give it a shot because a lot of what I had in the fridge seemed like it would make sense in a salad. That being said, I combined garden spiral pasta noodles, Ramen noodles, halved cherry tomatoes, and sliced avocado together with a light Italian dressing and fresh-squeezed lime juice. And while I totally hate to toot my own horn, it turned out so good! I named my creation Avocado and Tomato Crunch Pasta Salad and I will happily share the recipe with you below!
Sunday night we took Justin and Jamie up on their offer to come over and mooch off of their Showtime subscription for the season premiere of Dexter. (Ah! The season only just started and I can already tell it will be the most intense yet!) Jamie and I demolished a bottle of wine and I stumbled into bed around midnight feeling happy to have gotten both my weekly Dexter fix and some quality time with Jamie. I always love talking to her. :)
Avocado and Tomato Crunch Pasta Salad
1 box garden spiral pasta noodles
1 package Ramen noodles (chicken flavor, but discard flavor packet)
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 avocado, sliced
¼ cup light Italian dressing
1 tablespoon olive oil
Half of a lime
Salt and pepper
Boil pasta in water until soft. Allow pasta to cool (or if you have limited time, rinse pasta in cold water). Combine pasta with avocado, tomatoes, oil, and dressing. Squeeze in lime juice and let ingredients soak together in fridge for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Break apart Ramen noodles and mix into salad. Salt to taste.
How was your weekend?