Friday, March 28, 2008

My TRUly amazing husband

Monday night David and I were able to have a night out without Ella before our second child is born--a huge thanks to Jyothi! She came over and stayed with Ella while we took a hospital tour (not so exciting) and then David had made reservations for us to have dessert at TRU. Some of you might remember that this is the world-renowned dining establishment where we dined on our 1st wedding anniversary. For those of you that have had the ultimate food experience of dining at TRU, I need not say more other than my husband is amazing! For those of you that have not had the pleasure, be sure to click on the TRU link and check it out.

Though we were only supposed to have dessert/drinks, etc. I decided I really wanted something else too, so I ordered a soup course, a la carte, out of the three course Prix Fixe dinner you can get. It was this: Lobster Soup, Ground Hominy, Lobster Emulsion, Spoonbread. One thing you need to understand is the "production" that comes with every little thing at TRU. For example, my soup was set in front of me with the Lobster Emulsion (think foam) in the bowl, covering the ground hominy and spoonbread. Then one of our half dozen or so servers came with a beautiful white porcelain vase and poured the actual lobster soup over it. Think service over the top--everything is synchronized i.e. the pouring of two glasses of water, the setting and removal of different dishes, silver , etc. , the small silver bowl of ice cubes that sits next to my glass of water and periodically someone comes and spoons ice into the glass for me.

Of course, the amuse bouche- three to be exact-were nothing less than amazing. One contained caviar and sake so I had to pass :-(, but my favorite and David's too I think was the dessert amuse: Devonshire clotted cream, pomegranate puree, topped with pop-rocks. Yes--pop-rocks! It was great and made me feel like a kid again. Our desserts were wonderful and we ended up with four instead of two. Long story short: service. Even this was a little surprising after the TRU driver drove a box of truffles to our house once due to a mix-up........which by the way I've received as gift's twice from David.

I ordered this:
Vanilla Cream
Lemon Chiffon,
Vanilla Pot de Crème,
Lemon Curd Ice Cream,
Citrus Suprêmes

David ordered this:
Cocoa Nib Macaroon
Bitter Chocolate Ice Cream,
Milk Chocolate-Sour Cream Ganache,
White Chocolate Chiboust

and then we also were given this:

Apple Confit
Pine Nuts,
Spiced Cider Caramel

and this:

Hot Chocolate Soufflé
Cayenne Pistachio Crumbs,
Saigon Cinnamon Ice Cream,
Vanilla Marshmallow,
"5-Alarm" Chocolate Sauce

The other important thing to remember is this. TRU is not stuffy, it's not pretentious, it's not uncomfortable. It's an art gallery containing Warhol's, etc. It's amazing food served in fun and exciting ways. It's very formal and elegant but fun. And yes, there really are blue velvet cushions for the ladies (served to be great for my back this time). There was a family of five with three kids ages probably age 10 to 16 who were dining when we arrived. No, you can't wear jeans. Come on, it's not the OG. But you don't need to feel uncomfortable--just come for the evening of your life! Or second... (and hoping for more!). Even the bathrooms are spectacular--and this time I used it more than the average diner.

David was able to try a great cheese from Bourgogne--just because we asked what it was after seeing it wheeled by in the cheese cart so many times. Unfortunately it was a fresh milk cheese so I couldn't join him. And of course the chocolate cart and then the truffle cart after that had us both on a chocolate high for the evening. Not to be outdone by our "goodie bags" we got on the way out of a delicious pound cake with surprise apple filling...seriously, I could go on and on. But I'll stop now.

I love you David, and not just because you take me to TRU, but because you are a truly wonderful husband in all ways imaginable.

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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Easter: Chicago style

Easter eggs lying in the 7 inches of glistening snow!
First time to fear the Easter Bunny, and of course I'm not
wearing snow pants--nice.
Tulip peeking up through the snow in the courtyard
Ella and Papa at the egg hunt
It's hard to pick-up the egg out of the snow
when you won't take off your mitten......

Dying eggs

Two colors...
Checking out her Easter Basket
All dressed and ready for Easter Sunday

Ready with my new purse

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Friday, March 21, 2008

Big Sister

No, we didn't have the baby yet. But yesterday, Ella had her Big Sister class at the hospital. It was really good--they watched a silly movie all about "siblings", practiced holding newborn size babydoll's that were swaddled in the hospital blankies and wearing the hospital hats, took a tour of a LDR room and a post-partum room, and of course visited the nursery where we luckily saw one baby. Ella got a certificate and a coloring book about big brothers/sisters. In spite of her miserable state of sickness she enjoyed it as best she could.

Ella's sickness is actually on the mend, I think, which is great since she's been sick for over a week now. David and I (particularly me) have been SO careful to not get this from her (read: hands cracked and bleeding from so much antibacterial hand gel)--so let's keep our fingers crossed. More than anything I have ZERO patience left to care for a whiny, feverish (gone now), snotty (won't blow nose), ear infected, coughing, stubborn three year old!! Dear Lord, please bring health to our family quickly.

On another note, in honor of Easter weekend we have a 30 degree snow-filled day today in preparation for the Easter Bunny's visit to the park tomorrow for the egg hunt. We will be putting on our snow boots and going!

Monday night David and I are going on the adults only tour of the hospital and then out for coffee/dessert afterward. Yes--this means Ella will not be with us! Thank you Jyothi! Our pre-baby #2 date night. Hopefully we'll get it in and also my haircut on Wednesday evening before the baby comes. Enjoy the belly shots you've all been craving so much.....

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Monday, March 17, 2008


Oxi-Clean is great on clothes. However, not so great on mirrors. In my overly-pregnant state of mind I attempted to clean our large mirrored closet doors today--"nesting" I guess. Only problem was that it took about 10 minutes of vigorous scrubbing, respraying and bad-mouthing the store brand of glass cleaner--thinking I should have shelled out the extra cash for Windex. Then when I gave up trying to get the "foggy" look off the glass I noticed I was holding the bottle of Oxi-Clean NOT the glass cleaner...What a pregnant mess!

On another note, I made it through my chamber performance tonight. I did opt to play sitting rather than standing--but nonetheless made it through my two Katherine Hoover pieces with success!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

"Mama, don't come in here!"

This evening I was cooking dinner and Ella was in the living room coloring. It was really quiet--which is normal for her when coloring. I asked a couple of times--are you o.k. Ella? "Yes" was the quick reply. Then after a few minutes I realized that I wasn't hearing the actual "coloring" of the marker or crayon on the paper, which I usually can hear. So I walk around the corner, and immediately her hands go behind her back and she starts yelling, "Don't come in here! I didn't want you in here! Please don't come in here!" I quickly realized this was not the usual disappointment over my seeing a "surprise" she was making for me. So I said, "Ella, what are you doing?" "Ella, you're not going to be in trouble but I need you to tell me what you're doing." She then says, "coloring." "On your paper?" "No, on my fingers and hands." O.k., let me see them please. She pulls her hands out and I see she has picked the color BLACK to color the entire tips of all her fingers and decorate her arms. I calmly continue while trying not to laugh, and say "Ella where are we supposed to color?" She of course says "on paper". I then said, you need to promise me you will only color on paper from now on. She agrees and we go to the bathroom to wash it all off, after I take a picture of course! :-)

So here's my question of the day for those of you older than I: "What did you do before the invention of washable markers?????"

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