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Sunday, January 31, 2016

Saturday Ramblings ~ We Freezed at the Winterfest

It seems like forever since I did one of these posts. It is such a great way of giving you a slice of what is happening in the Jowdry/Decoteau household. Saturday started per usual with our rushed exit out the door to get to dance class. We made it only 5 minutes late and Gabrian was able to jump right in.
You probably can't see it but I took this picture because we were astounded to see a car off the road an in the reeds (I just want to mention I took this picture when I was at a complete stop at a red light). Everyone seemed ok and there were other cars stopped to help them out but that was super scary to see. I didn't think the roads were icy but apparently I was wrong. Hopefully they were able to get out with little damage done to their car.
Gabrian was ready to join me on some errands for the day.


We started our shopping at TJ Maxx. We found caramel apple chips (I was not a fan but Gabrian was a huge fan....what a surprise, the naturally thin person liked a healthy snack), my new wallet (I have been on the hunt for a month now), and some super cheap Power Ranger underpants (for Gabrian, I was bummed that they didn't offer them in my size).We
We stopped at Trader Joe's to start our grocery shopping (your guess is as good as mine why he is saluting me in this picture). I am trying out a new way of grocery shopping this week as well as trying to get back into some healthier eating. You can read about why I have a Pants Problem on my other blog. Basically, I am shopping for our dinner on the day of instead of doing a meal plan on Friday. I find I don't want to eat what I plan on Friday nights and I am wasting lots of food and eating lots of mac and cheese and other bad choices. I am hoping this new plan gets the boys and I eating healthier. After grocery shopping and stopping at a tire store to get a quote on new tires (it will be nice visiting with my tax return when it shows up...stupid adult responsibilities. I want to spend my refund on Kit Kat Candy Bars and Margaritas), we headed to pick up Tenney and Emmett to got to the Winter Festival in South Portland.

The boys humored me with pictures. They were chomping at the bit to get to the sledding hill and I made them wait and take pictures right next to the car.

We walked up just as they were about to start the next wagon ride. We jumped on and got a tour of the parking lot.
We admired Tony and Bob (the horses, not the drivers) from afar at first but later in the day we got permission to go and give them a nose rub.
Next up was the fire pit where we stopped to warm up (remember it was a winter festival? that makes it cold and someone who was slightly foolish thought they would be fine in a just a sweater....ok it was me).
We stopped to look at the ice sculptures. We than had to stop the boys from licking the discarded ice blocks they found on the ground. Seriously boys?? Dirty ice blocks, why not eat some yellow snow while you are at it (scratch that...they don't need any new bad ideas).



We finally reached our destination of the man made hill. It was pretty sweet, they even built steps into the back of the hill. The boys had a blast and it was hard to get them to leave. It was really hard to get pictures of the kids though. Some parents thought it was ok to let their kids climb up the front of the hill instead of walking around to the back like our kids had to (because they have mothers that make them use their basic manners and common sense). None of the parents seem to pick up on my very loud, passive aggressive comments I kept mentioning to Tenney.

These were my two favorite shots I got of the boys. I love the pure joy that is on the boys faces. We finally convinced the boys to go when we happened upon a couple of banks giving out some super amazing swag. I walked away with some gloves and a scarf (apparently they were aware that sweater people like me would show and be frozen to their core). I was never so happy in my life to put on those deliciously warm gloves. Speaking of delicious, we found the buffalo wing warming tent!


Buffalo Wild Wings had a contest and then were handing out samples and we each got to try out their wings. These were awesome!





On the way out, I attempted to do a photo shoot with the boys. It wasn't what I was imagining but there were lots of laughs to be had (until the crying started...I don't know what is with these two, but they fight like brothers and it wouldn't be an afternoon together with our group if there hasn't been several crying sessions).


On the way out, we grabbed another loop around the parking lot and a little horse loving (just a little nose rubbing, nothing past the ears...get your mind out of the gutter). The wings had won us over and we ran out to use the coupon they gave us immediately (why ever hold onto a coupon if you can use it right away?).



Lunch was awesome. Tenney and I were able to chat for a couple of hours because Buffalo Wild Wings are genius and give our kids tablets so we can enjoy a meal as almost grown-ups (they even gave us two because I can't even imagine how horrible it would have been if we had only one at our table).

After lunch, Gabrian and I finished up our grocery shopping and then headed home to immediately get into our pajamas and veg out with a little television (it was Dance Moms...don't you judge me). It was a fantastic Saturday Rambling and I can't wait to see where next Saturday brings us!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Don Churro Cafe Review ~ Chantilly, Virginia

I purchased a Groupon for the trip to Virginia. When I saw that Don Churro Cafe offered South American food, I was sold. We were able to fit in a visit to them after Riley's tour to George Mason University for a tasty lunch.


The restaurant is located in a strip mall along with several other dining options and a really awesome Asian Market (this place was seriously huge!). We arrived for a late lunch and were welcomed in by the waitress. We were allowed to choose any table that was available.
This Pisco Sour was my main reason for wanting to visit the restaurant. I was missing my Pisco's since we had been in Chile and I was so happy to be reunited. This was so delicious and it was a real bargain at the Happy Hour price of $4.50. Looking back, I am not sure why I didn't get a second one. What the heck was I thinking? While sipping this glass of awesomeness, we placed our order and relaxed in the pretty restaurant.




Very pretty decor and it was nice to look around while waiting for our food.


We started off by sharing a Empanada Colombiana ($3.99). This was a corn flour turnover with marinated steak and potatoes. This was fantastic and so interesting since we are more familiar with the Chilean Empanada. The steak was flavorful  and a perfect match to the turnover. Think of a thinner version of cornbread stuffed with delicious beef and potatoes.
I ordered the Churrasco Palta ($9.50) which is a grilled steak sandwich with avocado, lettuce, tomato, and mayo. This is served with french fries. This was a really good sandwich and I enjoyed it. However, it was missing my beloved Chilean bread. It is really hard to replicate that bread so the sandwich didn't quite hit my high expectations.
Riley went with Sánduche de pollo saltado ($7.99) which is a marinated chicken breast strips sandwich sautéed with onions, tomatoes topped with cheese. Riley really enjoyed this sandwich and found the chicken especially delicious on this sandwich.
Gabrian picked the Salchi-papas ($5.95) from the kids menu. He was not a fan but I don't blame the restaurant for that. I think he just wasn't that hungry and just wasn't feeling it. It tasted like a fancy cut hot dog to me and I think if he had been hungry he would have enjoyed it.




The boys and I also split a couple of the desserts. We went with the Churros Rellenos / Churros filled with  Dulce de Leche ($4.50). This to me was the clear winner of the two desserts. It was freshly prepared and the filling was a thick sweet caramel. The other dessert was the Churro con chocolate caliente / Churro sticks served with a cup of our delicious hot chocolate ($5.50). This was not quite as successful. The hot chocolate tasted like it was watered down. The churros were not made recently (which is a shame because you need to eat a churro right out of the fryer).
Overall, we thought Don Churro Cafe had potential and we would definitely give them another try. If you would like to try them out for yourself, they are located at 13905 Metrotech Drive, Chantilly, Virginia.