Monday, December 12, 2016

Restaurant Review: Spaghetti Warehouse

When was the last time you ate at The Spaghetti Warehouse?  It's been a good 5-8 years for me.  I dined there (no, not in the Trolley) with a friend in November and this is what I thought.

The atmosphere is so interesting.  I think I like it because it reminds me of going there for Homecoming or when you were a kid.   I'm not sure if I was new to the place, that I would like it.  The tchotchkes and Tiffany style lamps, dark wood and red awnings just make it seem so warm and cozy in there.

I feel the same about the food.  If I was eating there for the first time, maybe it would be rated as "just okay, " but since is a childhood nostalgia effect, I thought it was amazing!!  The bread and butter is so delightful and I always eat it - don't care!  

The salad is very lackluster, featuring iceberg blend basically out of a bag and jarred dressing.  Not my favorite.  I should have ordered the minestrone soup, I love that.

I got the good ol' spaghetti and meatballs with extra sauce.  Incredibly comforting and I had to restrain myself from eating it all.  The meatballs were a perfect size and great consistency.  The sauce has this wonderful rich flavor to which I always add red chili flakes and a bit of parm.  

My friend ordered the pizza bake (!!) which I was not familiar with from years' past.  It was angel hair pasta with sauce and a layer of cheese and pepperoni on the top.  WOWZERS.

I would absolutely go back and it will be fun to take Taylor because she LOVES spaghetti and so do I.  It's good for your soul.  

The...bread.   And more importantly, the BUTTER.

Salad with Italian

Spaghetti and Meatballs! YAY!

Pizza Bake

Friday, December 9, 2016

Target Fail

Shopping at Target is so fun.  I love Target, I love the layout, and you can get almost anything you need there.  Which is dangerous.

What is also dangerous is the sale rack.  Not in the terms that you buy too much negating the idea of saving money, but in the physical sense.

I was rifling through the 50% off rack and all of a sudden CRASH!  The whole rack went down. SERIOUSLY!  There was another shopper in my vicinity and she actually said, "What did you do?"  I wanted to snap back, NOTHING TOMMY BOY!  But I restrained myself.  

I went an found a dressing room attendant to confess my retail crime, and she actually laughed.  Out loud.  Which made me have a compulsion to hug her and then I thought, no, better not....

 We put the rack back together in true teamwork fashion.  She was so funny and gracious.

A+ customer service Target for not making me feel terrible/stupid and have to find a new Target. Target on Monroe is the place for me.   Perhaps I need to shop a bit less vigorously and a tad more gingerly.  

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Christmas Shopping 2016

In efforts to make the holiday less material (think "Keep Christ in Christmas"), I am adopting a new process.  Heard it on the radio and loved it.

4 gifts for each child
Something you want  Tickets to see Daniel Tiger live at the Stranahan (I like this because it is also an experience gift)

Something you need  See, this is my point, we don't truly need anything.  I was going to buy juice pouches and snacks and wrap them all individually so TNT a lot to open.  You gotta eat right?  Plus she's TWO let's not forget.  

Something to wear  Christmas Jammies

Something to read Christmas book

BONUS  A Santa gift - soccer net and cones for the basement

BONUS x 2 I want to do an ornament for St. Nick - it's less candy and then TNT can put it on the tree before Christmas to enjoy!

I realize this is still a lot of gifts, but helps me stay on track when it comes to buying.  Plus, if it works, this might be a great format for the future.

What do you think?

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Friday, November 4, 2016

Monday, October 31, 2016

Pepper Steak

Pepper steak - the perfect fall food!  Well, anytime food really, but I was really thinking about it for the last few days.  I can say I have never actually made this myself, but we ate it ALL THE TIME as a family. 

SO!  I got a hankering yesterday and whipped up a batch up delicious pepper steak.   Dandar family recipe below. 

Pepper Steak for 4

3 # Round steak, cut in strips                         1 garlic clove minced or 1 tsp powder
2 Medium onions, chopped                            2 green or red peppers in strips
1 can beef broth                                              ½ tsp salt
            or 2 bouillon cubes in 16 oz water     
3 TBS soy sauce                                              2 TBS cornstarch                               
2 cups rice                                                       ¼ cup cold water

Brown meat and season with salt and pepper.
Add  8 oz broth, save the other half for later.
Add chopped onion, cook on low heat until tender – about an hour and a half.
Add water as needed, do not let it go dry!

When meat is tender:

Start cooking rice, then

Stir in broth, soy sauce, and garlic.
Simmer 10 minutes or until meat is really tender.
Add water as necessary  - ½ to 1 cup for gravy
Add green pepper, cook 10 minutes or to your desired level of tenderness.

Blend cornstarch and water, stir into mixture and boil until thick (1 minute or so)

Salad, bread, vegetable, fruit, desert

Saturday, October 29, 2016


Here are a few pics from my best costume ever in 2012- Ursula the Seawitch (and Sebastian).  This costume took me about a month to complete.  I bought all materials or used what I had at home, sewed, resewed, and hand stitched.  My dad drilled holes in real seashells for the jewelry, the hair is my own LOL, and the paint!  Oh the paint!  Makeup and body paint took maybe an hour to complete.  Not pictured:  my Flotsam & Jetsam arm sleeves.  I was very proud of this get up and to date has been the most popular of all my weirdo costumes. 


Friday, October 28, 2016

Niagara Falls and Boston: THE FOOD

Seriously, I am THAT person that takes a pic of their plate, sometimes before and sometimes halfway through, but I love to document what we ate.  It's almost as good as actually consuming it!  Danny and I share a zest for good food, bad food, street food, gourmet food, exotic food, vending machine food, and local flavor.  If only there were a word for that?  Foodie?  :) 

Here is a portion of what we enjoyed, I kick myself for not taking a pic of the Arapes or the Jamaican Jerk.

A Canadian staple
Cheeseburger and poutine
Mini Cheeseburger and onion rings

Mama Mia's
Niagara Falls, ON
Calamari - illuminated by classic Italian Restaurant red light
Chicken Parm

Elements on the Falls Fallsview Restaurant
Charcuterie board

Hot Sauce store - giggle for the day

Cheers Boston
 Fish and Chips

Turkey Club at Cheers

Happy Husband at Cheers

My adorable cousins at Orange Leaf in Boston (Wellesley MA)

Luke's Lobster  Boston Backbay
Crab, Shrimp, & Lobster mini rolls

Mike's Pastry Downtown Boston
You cannot imagine the magnitude of pastries in this little store and HOW many people were crammed in there
Best pastry ever.  Honestly

OMG RIGHT??!!?!?!

Awesome car snack I discovered on the way home

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Niagara Falls and Boston - 5 year anniversary trip

To celebrate our 5 year anniversary, we hit the road for adventure.  First stop, Niagara Falls CAN then onto Boston.  Here's our trip in pics and video at the end.

We had to get an actual map in Canada because our phones didn't work.  DUH!

Guinness Book's World's Tallest Man

Tallest Man's chair


Skywheel on Cliffton

Mini golf - Dinosaur theme

Hornblower (formerly Maid of the Mist)

American Falls

Canadian Falls Horseshoe

So close it's scary

Rainbows are ever present when it's sunny

The mist in the early morning

Sunrise over Canada


Boston Duck Boat Tours - this bus turns into a BOAT!  

Just me and a horsey and a quart of beer

Old Capitol building