Friday, October 25, 2013

Grilled Cheese and Wisdom

Dad About The Town: Please do not read this. If you do, it will negatively alter our future.

This morning I can’t help but be a little proud of myself. I realized, at the age of 43, I am finally growing up…some. My wisdom is starting to blossom, FINALLY! And it’s all thanks to a grilled cheese sandwich.

Yes. A grilled cheese sandwich.

You see, last night, after work, Dad was headed off to meet with a friend for pizza and guitars. I had the job of staying home with two hungry, loud, cute, kids.

So, there we were, smack dab in the evening routine. Sarah was off to get in a little play time with her bestie next door, Elijah was digging through his toy boxes for Mater,  Dad was switching into his tennis shoes, and I was doing dishes and prepping for dinner. 

After a quick kiss, Dad went out the front door at the same time Sarah came in.

“What’s for dinner?” She says. 

I contemplated tossing cereal in a bowl and calling it good, but thought better of it since that wouldn’t leave enough breakfast for morning be healthy. Then I put the pressure back on my daughter.

“What ingredients do we have that could be made into a meal?”

She wasted not a second before hollering out, “CHEESE AND BREAD! DAD’S GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICH!”

That could be a problem. 

You see, Dad left. 

So it would be MOM’S grilled cheese sandwich and to be honest, I like Dad’s better, too.

There is something magical in the way he makes his sandwiches. They are so good that the thought of them will make me salivate and grin ear to ear. And to actually bite into them, well, I moan. They are THAT good. Just being honest.

In fact, this is the one meal that the kids BEG him to make. I love grilled cheese sandwich nights because, 1) THEY ARE TASTY, and 2) because I get the night off. They are DAD’S grilled cheeses, after all. HE has to make them. I am basically pushed to the wayside to go watch television. 

But tonight, I had to sub. Dad was gone, off eating pizza, and now I was gonna have to just bare down and do my own thing. And so I did.

Mamas, let me tell you, I NAILED IT!!!! My grilled cheese sandwich was perfectly browned, perfectly melted, perfectly buttered and it was AWESOME! I knew as soon as I saw the toasted sourdough that everything was going to be okay. 

I plated the kid’s sandwiches, paired them with some lovely red and green grapes, and poured some cold milk into cups that matched their dinnerware.

Proudly I walked to their little table and set the food down. 

I admit, while I was mostly confidant, a small piece of me was a tad nervous because, again, Dads grilled cheese sandwiches really are spectacular.

They both started in with the grapes. The anticipation was mounting. I was nervous. Part of the goodness of a grilled cheese is to get that first bite in while the cheese was still melty warm. Timing is everything. 

And then… it happened. Elijah nibbled and Sarah went in for the full on big bite. I quietly and surreptitiously watched her chew. Her face gave no indication to what she was thinking. 

UGH! The suspense.

Then, she turned her head and her eyes caught mine and said, “MOM! THIS IS AN AMAZING 'DAD GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICH'!” 

But the thing is – DAD DIDN’T MAKE IT! I DID!!! I MADE IT!! IT WAS MY GRILLED CHEESE AND IT WAS GOOD! SO GOOD IN FACT, I made myself moan.

None of this is demonstrating wisdom, I know this. So far I am only admitting that I am a competitive nutball and a validation junkie. But hang on. Wisdom is coming.

The night continued on. The kids ate, plates were washed, jammies were on, (s)nuggling was had… and eventually both kids were off to bed.

Dad came home.

When he said, “How was your night?”

I WANTED TO SCREAM OUT MY SUCCESS OF MAKING THE BEST GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICHES, EVER, but I didn’t.

“Fine.” I said.

I WANTED TO TELL HIM THAT THE BREAD WAS TOASTY AND BUTTERY AND THAT THE CHEESE WAS PERFECTLY MELTY!

“Usual night.” I said.

I WANTED TO SHOUT OUT THAT SARAH LOVED WHAT I MADE AND THAT IT MAY HAVE BEEN JUST AS GOOD, IF NOT BETTER, THAN HIS MAGICAL SANDWICHES.

“We just ate, watched TV, nuggled, that’s all.” I said.

And you see, Mama’s, THAT is wisdom right there. Capital W to the ISDOM! 

Had I jumped the gun and told Dad that I had made some bad-ass grilled cheese sandwiches that night, had I described the way they look and tasted, had I told him that Sarah LOVED them, that they were, dare I say, magical…

I would no longer have that one meal that only Dad could cook. I would no longer be pushed to the wayside to go watch Extra Extra! The History Channel all to myself. And Mama’s, I treasure those nights that he cooks and giggles with the kids. I was not going to let my competitiveness take that away from me.

WISDOM! Right? I made a wise decision? Or maybe it’s selfish, but I am gonna call it wisdom.

Who makes the BEST grilled cheese sandwiches, DAD DOES! He’s the CHAMP!

And that, is fine with me.

Thank you grilled cheese sandwich for showing me that I don’t always have to WIN.




Sunday, October 20, 2013

Shop Locally... Online!


Often times when we think of shopping local we think we need to get dressed, climb in the car and head out and about the streets for the brick and mortar shops.  But you know what, that's not true! You can shop local without even leaving your house or your jammies.

Let's face it, some days we really (really) don't feel like doing much more than rolling out of bed and shuffling to a coffee pot.  On those days, you can still shop local to your heart’s content!

Recently I happened upon a local girl doin’ good, online, via Etsy! Her store is named Something Borrowed and her forte is vintage clothing. It would be more accurate to say gorgeous, eclectic, stylish, classic, and feminine vintage clothing.  Beautiful stuff, really! Not just clothes, either! While she has tons of dresses, skirts, shirts, and caftans, she also has purses, shoes, belts, and jewelry! I like jewelry.

You can sit in your jammies sippin' your coffee and shop on her Etsy site for an outfit from head to toe! Save gas, relax, and enjoy the online shopping experience. She has everything to make you look more stunning than you already are.

The gal behind the store is Amy.  Amy lives in Stockton and runs her business from her home. Her love for vintage clothing came about as a teenager when she would go clothes shopping at thrift stores due to lack of funds. However, her passion for fashion and clothing, vintage clothing specifically, blossomed at those thrift stores! Even as her income grew, her style stayed true to vintage.

She got a job as a clothing buyer, visual merchandiser, and retail manager and found that she was in her element. Loving her work she decided to take it a step further. Now with a decade of experience, degrees in fashion merchandising and retail management, she opened her own store - online store. She has been on Etsy since 2010, but still has her eye on a traditional storefront that will specialize in women's clothing from the 1950s-1990s with a splash of pre-1950s.

If you are a vintage clothing fashionista or even have a slight curiosity for that era of clothing, stop by and check her collection! Amy offers a full service clothing store, too.  If you are unsure of which clothing vintage pieces of clothing pair together nicely, or if you are intimidated by older sizing charts, no worries! Amy offers look-books, tips, tricks and links to be sure you look and feel your best! 
 
Oh, and a side note... not only is Amy a local business, she supports local business – the images showcasing her inventory are made possible by local women models and photographers, such as Staci Takach! Keepin' it local, who doesn't appreciate that?

Go ahead, visit Amy! Check her out on Facebook and tell her Mom About The Town sent you! Even if you don't buy today, take the time and give her page a like, a share and a "hello". A little encouragement and kindness can go a long way!





Where you can find Amy of Something Vintage:


www.somethingborrowedvtg.com
www.somethingborrowedvtg.etsy.com
www.facebook.com/somethingborrowedvtg
www.instagram.com/somethingborrowedvtg
www.pinterest.com/borrowedvintage



Thursday, October 3, 2013

Hello There Mile Wine Company!

I am thrilled to be sharing out the goodness that can be found at the recently opened Mile Wine Company located on the popular Miracle Mile in Stockton! They opened their doors to the public for the first time last Friday, October 27th and in a short span of 5 hours more than 200 people eagerly welcomed the new establishment and their gracious and knowledgeable owners, Paul and Cynthia Marsh.

I was one of the 200 and I had an absolute blast!

The brightly colored, uniquely decorated, jazz music inspired wine bar and cafe is the ideal place to relax, enjoy a glass of wine, and indulge in an exceptionally tasty el cubano panini. Yum! They had me at pork... well... and the gruyere (and ham, Dijon aioli, pickles -- all on fresh, authentic Cuban bread).

I can see already this will be a place I'll enjoy for leisurely lunches with my family and friends. And when I am able to afford sitters and wrestle up the energy, I am sure to also be at Mile Wine Company for a romantic date night with the hubby. It will be one of the perfect places to stop before heading out to a great event at the Bob Hope Theatre! Or maybe just a place to get a little break from screaming, fighting kids.

No matter what gets you to 2113 Pacific Avenue, once you are seated inside or on the patio, you will instantly feel at home. There is a warm, friendly, comfortable, vibe that just hugs you up and welcomes you in. I'm telling you, the place will hook you, I am sure of it!

So will the owners!

If When you visit, don't be shy, ask to speak to Paul and Cynthia Marsh, get to know them. They are amazing people and soon you will find yourself stopping by to visit with them just as much as you will be visiting the wine! 

But enough yappin'... let me SHOW you the place: 




The custom paintings on the wall were completed by local artist Jacqueline Faylor











Learn more about Paul Marsh in an excellent article about the Mile Wine Company
can be found in the Sacramento Bee!