Weekend Things & Turning 28

Life gave me an eye twitch for my birthday.  And to that, I say NO THANKS!

But to everything else — an incredible dinner at El Five, a new cookbook that I’ve already dog-eared to death, soba noodles (don’t ask…), birthday breakfast at my favorite place, two bouquets of the prettiest flowers, a family BBQ, nail polish and a succulent terrarium, red velvet cake and so so many loving “Happy Birthday!” messages — I say YES, YES, YES!  I think I have a real good feeling about 28.

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I could say A LOT about dinner at El Five but I think those photos (mostly) speak for themselves.  THE FOOD, THE VIEW, THE EXCEPTIONAL QUALITY OF EVERYTHING.  Joey and I are now in a thruple with that lamb sausage and hummus dish.  It’s maybe too soon to tell, but I think, of all the Edible Beats restaurants, El Five serves the best food.

Definitely not too soon to tell that this guy is my favorite human ♥

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If you have leftover ricotta, you definitely make ricotta pancakes.  These are the rules, okay?  Post-pancake time, we biked to the Farmers’ Market and were disappointed in the offerings again.  Where the shishitos at, friends?!  We DID buy some corn tortillas and tomatoes for Sunday’s taco feast though, so I guess it wasn’t a total wash.

Oh and we had a totally weird run in with a guy who needed to borrow a cell phone on our way there.  Still not sure what was going on, but he was very desperate to use a phone to cuss someone on the other end out?  I don’t even know!

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Rockies had fun and exciting wins on both Friday and Sunday so of course we went to Saturday’s losing game.  WHOA with these super crowded games lately though!  Also, please know we spent the afternoon cleaning our house and completely ran out of grocery energy, so we laid in bed and ordered them online instead.  I feel very very good about that life decision.

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This is what the start of 28 looks like.  Aka waking up to roses, eating an avocado tartine (so less nauseatingly trendy than avocado toast, of course :P) and multiple cups of coffee.  Not mad about it at all!

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After breakfast, we finished cleaning up our house and while Joey was outside mowing and whatever else he happily does in our yard, I was inside making quick pickled veggies, strawberry simple syrup, lunches for the week, pico de gallo and chimichurri for TACO DINNER!  Sometimes, when you have a group of six and every Denver restaurant feels small and loud, you just decide to host your own birthday dinner at home.  Plus we got to use my new grill and relax in the backyard with margaritas, grilled corn salad and homemade red velvet cake to complete the meal.  WAS SO PERFECT!

P.S. We let my sister pull a carrot from our garden and it was highly entertaining!

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SPOILED! ♥♥♥

P.S. I asked Joey if turning 28 means I definitely can’t pass for under 21 anymore and he said no 😦

Weekend Things: When it’s summer in winter

It’s officially the first day of spring, but it was 80° in Colorado this weekend!  We had all the fans on and all the windows open, but it was straight up HOT.  Felt like we completely skipped over spring and went straight to summer.  It’s cooling back down (slightly) this week, but I didn’t mind that little summer vacation one bit.

Last night, as we were putting away the dishes and getting ready for bed, I asked Joey what his favorite part of the weekend was.  He couldn’t pick.  And honestly, neither could I.  If I were to share it with you in word form it would look something like: patio beers at a new-to-us brewery, traditional St. Patrick’s Day corned beef & cabbage (PLUS GREEN VELVET CAKE!) with my family, a kombucha field trip with my sissy, pizza lunch date, LOTS of reading outside in the sun, an evening run, Beauty and the Beast, the most incredible Sunday brunch, exploring the Stanley Marketplace, “Sunday stuff” (aka being an adult), an evening stroll and capping it all off with a perfectly springy salmon dinner.

And in picture form, it would look like this…

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Joey suggested we hit up 4 Noses Brewing after work on Friday and it did not disappoint.  That place is doing everything (from their website to their beer to their taproom atmosphere) right!  

P.S. Remind me to drink more saisons.

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PSA: My mom is the best.  I declare this the best corned beef she’s ever made (so perfectly salty!) plus I mentioned to her earlier in the week that I was dying to try Irish Soda Bread and she surprised me with a loaf.  Red GREEN velvet cake for dessert because, as I said, my mom is the best.

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Our tree babies bloomed!!!!!  I actually squealed in delight when we pulled up to the house on Friday night and I saw the little blossoms.  Joey texted me this picture Saturday morning when he left to pick us up some iced coffee and those little flowers are so perfect.

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I made Joy’s whole grain waffles and they were seedy, but in a good way.  I kind of loved them!

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At noon, my sister and Wayne came over and then we all headed to American Cultures, which is, GET THIS, a kombucha taproom!  I got a taster — ginger peach was the best! — and Joey got a kombucha float so he was just as happy.  I asked Joey to take the picture at an angle that would make me look just as tall as my sister but I see he failed completely.  

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After my sister and Wayne headed back home, Joey and I walked over to Denver Deep Dish where I had a salad + slice lunch and it was so satisfying.  Post lunch, we hung out in the backyard, went on that evening run, watched the animated version of Beauty and the Beast (HOW’S IT SO GOOD, THOUGH??) and then I fell asleep on the couch at the like 10 PM.  

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Sunday morning at the new Stanley Marketplace.  People have been talking it up and I was like “yeah, yeah, but how’s it any better than The Source?” Turns out it’s way bigger, has way more restaurants and shops and is just… uh yeah, better.  

We ate at Annette and I was so totally smitten with the experience.  They do a daily biscuit (apricot & ginger) and it was huge and buttery and I think Joey loved it more than he loves me.  We both ordered the pork shank hash and it was INCREDIBLE.  Those crispy potatoes, that fall-apart tender pork, those perfectly poached eggs and PICKLED mustard seeds.  Help, I’m head over heels.   

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Post-brunch, it was grocery, laundry, lunch salad prep, slow-cooker beef (for burritos this week!), reading, being delighted by Joey finishing a bunch of house projects, I actually cleaned the bathroom (instead of just talking about needing to) and then we went on a little end-of-the-day stroll before dinner.

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I made us this Dijon-Herb Crusted Salmon with Creamy Dill Sauce + Warm Buttered Radish & Edamame Salad and it tasted like straight up spring deliciousness.  Joey was blown away and I take that as the highest of compliments.

I give this weekend an A+ and gosh, I’m so happy it’s spring today!  What did you do this weekend?!