Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

May today be full of TREATS and no TRICKS!

Have a GREAT Halloween!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Seven Bits of Information

I've been tagged by
The Jason Show for a rather creative meme. I'm supposed to share 7 random/interesting pieces of information about me. Hmm... this could be scary!

#1 - I don't like to sit with my back to a door when I'm in a restaurant or at meetings. Must be all those mafia movies and television shows that I've watched! I like to see who's coming and going.

#2 - My biggest fear is FIRE. I’m petrified of it. I think it is the destructive nature of it and how it can completely wipe a slate clean. Very scary.

#3 - I am addicted to television… too much! Love TV, and my guilty pleasure is currently “Dexter” on Showtime and “True Blood” on HBO. Both are AWESOME!

#4 - I was adopted when I was 3 weeks old. We adopted our son when he was 4 weeks old. My husband was adopted by his stepdad… So we are a family of “special” children! (watch it... no special in a short bus kinda way!)

#5 - Regarding my adoption - My given name was.... Lindalu Heidi Fernandez. No offense to my birthparents - but, I am much happier with Cindy Lynn Porter.

#6 - I love PEEPS! But only the yellow Easter Chicks… and they have to be stale! I know weird… you’re either a peep lover or hater – and if you love them you are usually pretty specific on whether or not you want them fresh or stale! (The PEEPS Halloween treats and Christmas treats just aren't the same... gotta be Easter Chicks!) My friends Kathy & Laura like theirs stale too... but Kathy gave me a great suggestion the other night - she freezes hers!

#7 - I've been married three times, but to only two men! My first husband and I were married for a very short time and then we divorced. When Richard and I were planning our wedding on the Queen Mary, we didn't want to wait... so flew to Las Vegas six months before and got married by a Justice of the Peace. No one knew about our secret wedding until years later. Only my dad and my friend Patricia knew about it when it happened. That was kind of a fun secret to keep all those years. Still alot of people don't know about it... Oh Wait! I guess they do now!

And now I'm tagging the following bloggers.
You're supposed to share seven interesting/random pieces of information about yourself, and then tag seven other people to do the same. Jason shared some "TMI" and it was fun, so if you would like to share TMI, feel free. (Do you think my PEEPS story was TMI? I sure had a lot to say about them! ha ha)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Our 21st Anniversary

Today is Richard and Cindy's 21st Wedding Anniversary. And, it has been exactly 24 years since the day they met at Pacific Savings Bank in Hollywood California. Richard was investigating a forgery that had occurred at the bank in which Cindy worked. It was truly love and first sight and we've been together since that day. Call it fate - or kismet - or destiny.... obviously we were "meant to be!"
We celebrated today by going to see the musical "Spring Awakening". Cindy has wanted to see it for several years. She loved it... Thanks to my "men" for going with me!

After the play we ate at our favorite restaurant, PF Changs. We had our usual yummy Chicken Lettuce Wraps, followed by Mongolian Beef and Kung Pao Shrimp. SO TASTY!

After PF Changs we came home to celebrate with some champagne, which we have every year in our wedding glasses that our Matron of Honor, Patricia, bought for us all those years ago. It wouldn't be an anniversary without our toast in these glasses.

John was not too happy about going to the play today... this really isn't his "cup of tea", but he went to make his Mom happy. When asked, "John, how did you enjoy the play?" His response is pretty obvious in the picture below!

It was a fun day! Here's to another 21+ years!

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Goodbye New Orleans

Well, they say that all good things must come to an end... and so must the magical trip to New Orleans. (boo hoo). Our last day was wonderful - filled with great sites, fantastic people, melodious music, and of course - excellent food. Here are a few parting shots of the city that holds my heart!

Below is a picture of the statue of Andrew Jackson. It stands in the middle of Jackson Square, in front of St. Louis Cathedral. (which is the picture above) If a statue shows a man on a horse, and both of the horse's front feet are in the air - that means that the person depicted in the statue died in battle. Andrew Jackson was our seventh U.S. President. He was a hero in the Battle of New Orleans in the War of 1812. This statue was dedicated in 1856.

Yesterday ended with an incredible meal at Bayona on Rue Dauphine. Click HERE for their website. We were very adventurous at this meal. We had two excellent appetizers - Veal Sweetbreads with a Lemony Caper Sauce & Goat Cheese Crouton with Wild Mushrooms in a Madiera Sauce. So TASTY! JJ even tried the Sweetbreads, which really surprised me. He announced that they "weren't bad".

JJ ordered the Hanger Steak that came with perfectly prepared Asparagus, Fingerling Potatoes and a Bordelaise Sauce. Cindy had the Boudin Stuffed Rabbit Roulade and Buttermilk Fried Leg. This was served with the tastiest Creamy Grits and perfectly tart Greens. Richard ordered the Grilled Duck Breast that was served with Pepper Jelly and Wild Rice. We all tasted each others food. JJ thought the Steak was the best (what a surprise!) but Cindy and Richard both thought that the Rabbit was the best.

What better way to end an evening than by visiting with new friends at Cafe Du Monde. (Can't believe we didn't think to take pictures!) Christine and Michael came to visit with us. It was the most excellent ending to our trip. What a fun couple they are. We really enjoyed talking with them, and getting to know them. We hope that we will get to see them again sometime soon - either here in NOLA or in our fair state of Oregon. Thanks for a wonderful evening guys!

And, so the sun sets on our superb adventure in the Crescent City! If you have never visited NOLA - please think about coming! This city relies on tourism in order to thrive. She needs you to come and fall in love, like I have, and then tell all of your friends to come too! If you have visited NOLA and you are afraid that it may still be too soon after Katrina to visit - please put your fears to rest and get on a plane soon! There are indeed some differences, and certainly the ecomony is currently playing a part in the fact that there are fewer tourists right now... but it's time to return and help the Big Easy recover.

Thanks for "joining" us on our adventure. We head back to Oregon in just a few hours. I'm already planning our return trip to N'awlins! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Last Full Day...

...In the "City That Care Forgot"! I am so sad that we will be leaving tomorrow. This is the most perfect city. Perhaps I would feel differently if I lived here? But, I don't think so. As it is, we only visit for a few days at a time. It never seems long enough to do and experience all that I want to do and experience. If JJ didn't have to get back to school I would seriously be thinking about changing our flight and seeing if we could stay a few more days. (Cindy makes a frowy face! Spoiled Princess 'til the end!)Richard and I got up early this morning to go on a Cemetery Tour. We went with the same group that did the Haunted Tour we took on Sunday night. What an experience. We toured the St. Louis Cemetery #1. It is a Catholic Cemetery and we learned about burial practices and heard more history of the city on our walking tour.

We got to see where Ernest Morial is buried. He was the first New Orleans Mayor of color. Right next to him is the grave of Marie Laveau. She was the "Voodoo Queen". She lived from 1801 - 1881, according to our tour guide, Renee.

This row in the cemetery has been restored to look as it did 100's of years ago. The St. Louis #1 Cemetary has been in existence since the late 1700's.
Because this was, and is, a Catholic Cemetery - the Protestant's had to be buried in a different area... Protestants to the back of the bus, as it were. Us Lutheran's aren't too sure how we feel about this! ha ha ha...
Here is a collage of just a few of the sites on our tour. Two of these graves date back to the late 1700's and early 1800's. Amazing that they are so well preserved. There is wonderful society, which our tour guide belongs to, called Save Our Cemeteries. Click HERE to find out more about them.
After our walking tour, we were hungry! John had stayed back at the hotel - so we came back to get him and walked down to Decatur St. to eat at one of our favorite New Orleans restaurants - The Crescent City Brewhouse. Richard and Cindy enjoyed a tall cold glass of Red Stallion beer and we ate probably the most healthy meal we've eaten since arriving in NOLA.
Richard had the SHRIMP SALAD. That was seared jumbo gulf shrimp, tossed with basil cream pesto, served with baby greens, tomatoes, crispy bacon, sweet onions and peanut vinaigrette.
Cindy enjoyed the GRILLED TUNA SALAD. It contained the freshest ahi tuna seared rare, tossed with mixed greens, tomatoes, red onion confit, cucumbers and avocados. Served with a creamy wasabi buttermilk dressing.
John had the BREWHOUSE RIBS which were served with a Ceasar Salad. They were so tender the meat was falling off the bone. (Picture turned out blurry, so it's not included here)

After lunch we walked to St. Louis Cathedral and lit a candle for Cindy's Mom, Sylvia. She died 22 years ago today. Although she never visited New Orleans, we are pretty sure she would have LOVED it here.

On our walk back to the hotel we stopped at the New Orleans Collection on Rue Royal. They have an amazing collection of original New Orleans photographs from the mid 1858 - 1861. Quite breathtaking.

Tonight we are eating at Bayona, which is Susan Spicer's restaurant. She is a famous chef here in N'awlins. After that we are meeting our new friend Christine from GumboYaYaBaby at Cafe Du Monde. She and Cindy met through blogging, and she was a great source of information to help us plan a fantastic trip to NOLA.

We saw that blogger is going to be down @ 8pm tonight Pacific Time, so wanted to post this now. If the opportunity presents itself, we will post again later tonight with our dinner and dessert photos!

Let the Good Times Roll!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Monday in the "Crescent City"

We had another great day. We were still full from our late dinner last night. So, we decided to have a "light' breakfast at Cafe Du Monde. I figure, you've already seen two pictures of Beignets and Cafe Au Lait - so I won't bore you with those again.

We walked down to the RiverWalk, which is a huge mall on the opposite end of the French Quarter. It is by the Convention Center. We also wandered through Jax Brewery, which has been turned into a fun indoor mall full of shops and a food court. Unfortunately, we notice that there are a lot of vacancies, and not nearly as many patrons as we are used to. I suppose these are indications that New Orleans is still recovering post Katrina.

Here is a pic of Richard and JJ in the Spanish Plaza outside the entrance to the Riverwalk.
The Southern Food and Beverage Museum has opened in the Riverwalk Mall. It was VERY interesting. A lot of great information on Southern Food. Click HERE to find out more about this unusual collection!
The museum also displays information about dinners at the White House. The collage below is of Thomas Jefferson's place settings.
The Museum of the American Cocktail is also housed here. Very interesting collection of cocktail history! Click HERE to find out more about it.

Here are a couple of displays that we found interesting. Check out the information on the Tantalus and Jamaican Ginger. We had never heard of "jake leg" before! Thank goodness we don't have to drink "bathtub gin" any more!

Original newspapers discussing prohibition and the repeal of the amendment.

Cindy particularly enjoyed the information about Absinthe. Very appropriate collection for New Orleans. Also, we quite liked the "tiki" collection and martini grouping from the '60's!

And, what day in New Orleans with the Mulligan's would be complete without a description of the overwhelmingly fantastic meal we ate?? We dined at Emeril Lagasse's restaurant NOLA in the French Quarter. Emeril has three restaurants in New Orleans. One, Delmonico's, is still closed since Katrina. NOLA and Emeril's in the Warehouse District just reopened in September.

We had the most delicious bottle of Cabernet from the Fog Alley vineyard. (JJ didn't have his ID with him, so he wasn't allowed to enjoy the wine with us. But, he drank his weight in Sprite!)

Cindy started with the daily gumbo special. It contained just the right amount of spice, ham hocks, black eyed peas, and andouille sausage. It was fantastic beyond words.

Richard and Cindy both had the Grilled Rib Eye with German Style Fingerling Potatoes, Apple Wood Smoked Bacon, Coarse Grain Mustard Cream and Roasted Leeks.

JJ had the Filet Mignon with Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Homemade Worcestershire Sauce and Walnut-Blue Cheese Stuffed Portobello Mushroom. Well, he didn't actually eat his Portobello Mushroom - but Cindy thoroughly enjoyed it!

I will end as I began this blog... it was another wonderful day in the Crescent City! Tomorrow will be our last full day here. Cindy is already sad to be thinking about leaving. We have a full day planned - filled more sites to see, fabulous dining, and meeting up with some new friends in the evening. Can't wait!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Day Three in the Big Easy

Another fantastic day in the Big Easy! Today it wasn't so much about the food - although that is not to say we didn't eat and drink well. We got a late start so we "brunched" at Johnny's Po-Boys on St. Louis Street. Cindy had eaten here when she visited New Orleans with her friend Carol in 1994.

John had the Hamburger Steak Po-Boy, which was very much like a meatloaf sandwich. Cindy had a Muffeletta, which is filled with Italian meats, cheeses and delicious olive salad, and Richard had a Gator Po-Boy. The Po-Boys were all "dressed" which means they came with lettuce, tomatoes and mayonnaise. Tasty! The last picture is of our dinner, which we'll talk about later!

After "brunch" we walked... and walked... and walked.... we figured that the route we take through the Quarter is about 3 miles round trip. This is a good thing to help us work off all of the fantastically tasty (and most certainly lo-cal!) meals we have been eating.
Later in the afternoon we went down to the Carousel Bar in the Hotel Monteleone, where we are staying. That was a treat!But, the high point of the day was the Haunted History Tour we took at 6pm. A lot more walking, but filled with fun, ghost stories, and tons of historic tales of New Orleans.
Here are our tour guides, Bill and George. George said that if you believe his Great Grandmother he is descended from General Beauregard! We plan to visit General Beauregard's home later on this week!
Here are a couple of interesting pictures we took through out the day. The second was during our ghost tour. It is the story of Julia! Very interesting! Ask Cindy about it when she returns home, she'll be happy to tell you all about this tragic tale.
We ended the evening with dinner at the Hunt Grill in the Hotel Monteleone. We tried to get into NOLA which is one of Emeril's restaurants in the French Quarter. We ended up making reservations for tomorrow night. Our dinner at the hotel was delectable. Cindy was so excited to taste the meal she forgot to take a picture until we were almost finished. We all had the same thing, Tornadoes of Beef Tenderloin with fois gras. MMMMMM!Posted by Picasa

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Nawlins.... Day Two

Day Two... N'awlins Style! The eating continues! We began the day with a jazz brunch at the Court of Two Sisters. Cindy has ALWAYS wanted to have brunch there. We finally made it - and it was everything that she anticipated.

Cindy is embarassed to say she ate ALL of this food. But, she DID and it was more than DELICIOUS! The Eggs Benedict were fabulous; the hollandaise spectacularly creamy with just the right amount of lemony flavor. None of us had ever had Grillades before. That is a breaded veal in a delicate gravy with vegetables. Quite tasty. JJ wasn't too keen on eating veal - but then he tasted it and went back for a plate of his own. There were some fantastic pasta salads, crawfish, and shrimp to round out the "first course"!
There was delicious Turtle Soup, accompanied with more of the Grillades. And to top it off some very tasty Pecan Pie with homemade whipped cream. Richard had a plate of rich creamy vanilla ice cream topped with a Praline Sauce. And, we had a few mimosa's - just to "fill in the cracks"!

The flags in the picture below are displayed in the entry way to the restaurant.

The buildings that house the Court of Two Sisters are from the early 1700's. Originally known as "Governor's Row", the 600 block of Rue Royale was home to five governors, two state Supreme Court Justices, a future Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, and a future President of the United States. The original resident of this address was Sieur Etienne de Perier, royal governor of colonial Louisiana between 1726 and 1733. Click HERE to access the Court of Two Sisters website to learn more about this historic restaurant.

Walking back our hotel we were all quite taken with "Pete the Cat". Quite a fun and whimsical fellow. We bought a T-Shirt for John!
In the afternoon we went to the D-Day Museum. A very somber and educational experience. If you ever come to New Orleans, we highly recommend that you stop by. We took a guided tour of the Pacific Theater. In addition to information on D-Day they cover the entire war in the Pacific. Our tour guide, Tommy, served in WWII. He was an Army Engineer. He was very informative and quite a lot of fun.
John wanted to go back to Cafe Du Monde for Beignets AGAIN! You don't have to twist Cindy or Richards arms to make that happen. So, here we sat at 5pm for an afternoon snack!

We took a nice long stroll through the Quarter back to our hotel. (had to work off some of the massive quantities of food we ate today!)

Here a couple of the beautiful balconies that we passed, and the famous "Corn Cob Fence" on Rue Royal. Saturday was another perfect day, N'awlins Style! The weather was fantastic - not too hot with a wonderfully refreshing breeze. Now we have to see what Sunday will bring!
Posted by Picasa

Friday, October 10, 2008

Let the Good Times Roll!

Well, the title of this blog should REALLY be - "Let the eating begin!" We have arrived in New Orleans. We are "at home". The air fills my soul and heart. I am so incredibly happy to be here. And, of course, the food fills my belly!

Our first stop was Cafe DuMonde for a plate of beignets, and a delicious cup of Cafe Au Lait. YUM!

We walked around the French Quarter and wandered about the French Market. Upon returning to our hotel we decided to go swimming in the roof top pool. It was quite refreshing!
After the swim we went out to dinner at our FAVORITE restaurant on Bourbon Street - The Cajun Cabin. The food was awesome and the band was great. They are the same group of guys that have been playing there for 15+ years. It was great to see them and hear them again!

We had Alligator Bites for an appetizer. Delish! JJ had the 2 meat plate (brisket & ribs), Richard had an Alligator salad (good thing because JJ and I didn't share too much of the Alligator Bites with him!), and I had a "Fun on the Bayou" plate... Crawfish Pie, Jambalaya, and Seafood Gumbo. We also had the wonderful local beer - Abita. Great evening!

We can't wait to see what tomorrow brings! "Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler". (That means "Let The Good Times Roll"!)
Related Posts with Thumbnails