Nederland, Territory Days Colorado Springs, Henri’s, Toast

First things first. Friday we went up to The Nordstrom Rack so I could return a dress and DM could look at shoes. It’s near Littleton so we went over to a yummy place called Toast in downtown historical Littleton. Seems like it used to be a cute place. A Little Town. Now of course it’s a sprawling ugly suburban hell.

I had what else, french toast! And eggs. Yum. The french toast was sort of creamy inside and made with thick bread. Sort of cinnamony too but not too much. I could have lived without the whipped cream, but other than that it was delish. I was also considering the Grilled Chicken and Pear Sandwich, The Roasted Turkey and Avocado Sandwich, or The Apple and Brie Sandwich. I’m going to save this menu and see if I can make some of this stuff myself.

Oddly, given their name, the toast was the least interesting item they had. DM liked his cornbeef hash, tho.

We wanted to go on a hike to see wildflowers. After I reasearched it a little I realized there weren’t going to be any wildflowers yet. That happens in July. Still we wanted to check out the area so we headed up to Eldora/Nederland and walked this little hike. By the time we go there it was chilly (49 degrees!) and sort of late so we only spent about an hour on the trail. It will be a nice place to come back to in summer tho. Eldora is a pretty cute funky place. There’s no town there anymore, just a boarded up general store and some log cabins. The log cabins were cuuuuuuute. Little tiny things with lace curtains in the windows and stuff like that. It would be fun to stay in one sometime.

Yea, there was even still lots of snow on the ground!

One little tiny wildflower!

After the hike we went down into the town of Nederland. It’s not much of a town. Just 5 or 6 blocks. We had dinner and beers made on site at Wild Mountain Smokehouse and Brewery. It was VERY Colorado. I had the Otis Pale Ale- it was cute and had a pig on the tap. DM had some other thing that was a “guest beer” meaning it was from another local brewery not this one. I liked mine better. It was sort of sweet. We shared some sweet potato fries which were really good. As good at the ones at Paradox Lounge here in Colorado Springs.

DM had the brisket with the sampler sauce platter, baked beans and garlic mashed potatoes. I tasted it all and it was really good. One of the sauces was a Thai sauce and it was yummy. The rest of them were your standard bbq sauces. A couple of them were super hot and spicy. I liked them all but aside from the Thai one they weren’t outstanding. Not even close to Missouri Hicks! That’s the best sauce ever. I can’t wait to go back in September on a road trip with the DM. ANYHOW, this was very good. We did great as far as food went on Friday.

I was still pretty full from breakfast so I had a Buffalo pulled chicken salad. It was much smaller than I expected it to be (just a regular dinner salad plate) but even then I didn’t finish it. It was really good, tho! It was a perfect idea. I love Buffalo wings (despite the fact that the first time I ate them like 15 years ago I got major food poisoning from them- hey, that never stops me!) and to have it in a salad makes a lot of sense. The sauce was really hot and the blue cheese dressing and lettuce and carrots and celery were nice and cool and crunchy. I’m gonna for sure make this at home.

There are tons of street fairs almost every weekend here or nearby this summer. Yesterday we went to the first one, The Territory Days in Old Colorado City which is about 5 miles from here in an old historical part of town. It was PACKED. It was ok but not that exciting.

I love lilacs ans they’re everywhere here! I can’t remember them being everywhere in Southern California but maybe they are and I just somehow missed them.

We got hungry but didn’t want to eat $10 turkey legs or $6 funnel cakes so we popped into a little Mexican restaurant called Henri’s. I’d never heard of it or seen a review of it or anything. Yikes! That always scares me. Anyhow we sat at the bar, ordered up some drinks.

Chips and salsa were $2.

This is annoying and LAME! Mexican restaurants should not charge for chips and salsa. But by then I was hungry and getting a little drunk so we went ahead and ordered them anyway. Grrr. The salsa was really good. Hot but not overwhelmingly so. No raw onions in it which I appreciated as you know how fond I am of the raw onions.

I had my fave: posole. It was pretty good. Not as good as the one at Dona Rosa in Pasadena. I KNOW some people really hate that place and honestly I’ve only been a couple times but that posole will live in my memory forever. Anyhow, this one was good and hit the spot with the drinkin.

DM had some kind of enormous burrito. He enjoyed it.

After the fair we went over to Target for a few things. Then to Cheers liquor store so I could get more margarita fixins. I wanted to spend the day outside on the grass cuz it was so nice out. By this time DM was ready to crash tho. So he napped and watched hockey inside and I laid out in the sun for awhile. I neglected to buy triple sec cuz I bought margarita mix and figured it would have it in it. I dunno, it’s been forever since I’ve made margaritas. I would have made them from scratch but Colorado has the most retarded liquor laws that say you can’t sell food (limes!) in a liquor store. So screw it, I bought the mix. It’s a locally made mix with all natural ingredients and no HFCS so it wasn’t THAT bad. Homemade would have been way better. Anyhow I made the drink with the mix, the tequilla, and some OJ and it was pretty good. I only drank about half of it tho cuz I started to get a headache. I went inside and took a two hour nap but still had a headache so I took a fiorinal and had some coffee and felt better. Sheesh, not a good idea to drink first thing in the morning before eating anything, I guess.

Today we went to Home Depot to scout out flooring and carpet and other things cuz DM needs to do some work on his condo in Phoenix. The place was empty. Sundays in Colorado Springs. Sheesh. It’s good to be a heathen in this town. We also had hot dogs. Home Depot hot dogs are my faves.

Now DM is at work and I’m gonna go outside and sit in the sun for awhile then come back in and do some cooking. I guess I need to lay off the carbs for awhile because not only am I getting fat but I’m super cranky and low enrgy from them, too. I found some veggie recipes, too cuz I have been seriously lacking in them as well. I used to be so much better about food than I am now. I dunno what the deal is. I’ll keep you posted if I find some good ones.

Dallas Day Four

This was a short day cuz it’s the day we left. But we got up early and had breakfast at the hotel again. I wanted the french toast the day before but didn’t have it because I knew I would have felt tired and had a sugar crash a few hours later and had too many things I wanted to do. But this day all we needed to do was get on an airplane so I decided to have it. It was really good, as you might expect…:) It was stuffed with some sort of cream cheese and banana concotion and covered in honey instead of syrup. The honey made it lighter somehow. I was able to pretty much finish it which I usually can’t do.

DM isn’t really a breakfast person so he just had some oatmeal, which also looked pretty good.

Then we went back over to Dealey Plaza since we hadn’t taken any pictures the day before. It was raining so the shots aren’t that great and millions of these pictures have been taken so I’m not even sure why we bothered, but we did so… This is the book depository and the street that the motorcade was on when JFK was shot. That square window on the second from the top floor is where the shooter supposedly stood.

Close up of the 6th floor window (it’s the museum now)

The famous “grassy knoll”!

The stockade fence behind which many witnesses said they saw smoke and heard gunfire. So many that there’s home movie and media footage of a bunch of people running over there after the shots rang out to see what or who was back there.

The bridge where witnesses were standing and under which the motorcade sped on it’s way to the hospital. JFK was shot just on the other side of this bridge.

One of those grackle birds eating a cheeto. He picked it out or the bag which was pretty funny.

That’s our trip to Dallas. I noticed, on this trip specifically, that there are really not many differences between different parts of this country anymore. Even the famed Texas accent was hardly apparent at all. It’s getting harder and harder to pick out things to see and do that are really unique to a place. That’s mainly why I stick to regional food and historical places when I travel. Most of Dallas looked exactly like Southern California. In fact if I ever lived there, aside from the weather, it wouldn’t be any different than when I lived in L.A. Some of the neighborhoods are different looking, the houses and stuff, but those look just like Denver. In fact, since we just went to Denver the week before, I’m already mixing the two cities up in my mind. This seems a shame to me- we have such a vast country- so many places to go and things to experience but it’s becoming more and more the same everywhere. It’s been happening for at least 20 years (I noticed it when I took a road trip around the country in 1990) and in a way it’s better now than it was then because people have come to realize this sameness and have rediscovered some of their own quirks- saving old neighborhoods, opening regional style restaurants. Even the JFK museum wasn’t open until 1989! That building was and is being used for something completely different and unrelated. They only opened the museum because so many people would gather in the area with questions. So anyway, there you have it.

Dallas Day Three

First off we went to try and have breakfast at this place called Spiral but it isn’t open on Mondays. We even tried to go back on Tuesday but they didn’t open till 11:00. I didn’t research it ahead of time, we just drove past and it looked cool but as it turns out, apparently it’s a vegan place. Blech, glad we didn’t go. I’m down with vegetarian places but vegan places use wayyyyyyyyyyyyy too much fakey soy shit. As you know, I am NOT down with soy. ANYHOW, we had breakfast at the hotel restaurant which we wanted to try, too. It was pretty good. I had a veggie scramble with potatoes and biscuits. It was all pretty good. Not like super amazing but good. The tea they had there was super delish, tho.

DM had some kind of cheeseburger and fries. I tried the fries, they were just ok, too.

After breakfast we went back over to Dealey Plaza and to the Sixth Floor Museum. We’ve all heard all the conspiracy theories and maybe wouldn’t put it past the government or the CIA to kill the president (I know I wouldn’t) but it wasn’t until we saw the museum that we were really into the whole thing. They have a temporary exhibit of a dozen or so (maybe more) home movies of the day. Interestingly, only the one (Zapruder’s) actually shows the assasination. The rest of the people either photographed right up until the event, or somehow turned the camera off or pointed it away or some other suspicious thing so as not to capture the actual moments of impact. The people who took the movies either brought them into investigators or were forced to turn them over so god only knows what really went on. Crazy! We were so intrigued by this museum and the movies exhibit that we actually rented the movie JFK when we got home.

After this we wandered around downtown some more and hit up a couple of overpriced western stores.

Next we went to do some used clothing shopping. First stop House of Dang! I kept calling it House Of Dange. Hee hee. It was closed.

Then onto the Deep Ellum area where we had been the night before and saw lots of cool little shops. Of course, all closed. Why would they be open on a weekday? Sheesh, Dallas. We did find an open bar called The Angry Dog. It has won all sorts of “Best Of” awards so we stopped in for buffalo wings and gin and tonics and beer. DM had never had buffalo wings before! I had only had them a couple times, but from what I can tell, these were really good.

Went over to a couple more overpriced secondhand stores- at least these were open! Then down to the farmers market. We got there really late so it was pretty lame. DM bought an avocado and ate it in the car. This cracked me up so I had to take a picture of it. He also spilled some on the seat and we LOLed at what people would try to guess it was and how they’d never guess it was avocado. Again, guess you had to be there.

I’m sure we did some other things that afternoon but I can’t remember what. I’m sure we also napped. Then we went back across town to Norma’s Cafe cuz we heard it was awesome for pie. It WAS! It also looked awesome for everything else but we were really only hungry for pie, and even then, only slightly. I wanted banana pudding but they were out so I settled for coconut pie. It was not like any coconut pie I’ve ever had- for one, it had meringue on top which I normally hate but this was really good! Also it wasn’t all that creamy like from cream. But it was reeeeeeeeeeealy good.

DM had blackberry cobbler which was also good but not as good as the pie…:)

Later we went to a couple of Uptown bars. One called The Old Monk and this one, called The Libertine. As it turns out, we were really nearby where we were the first day.

I got pretty drunk and wanted to eat something before trying to go to bed and waking up sick so we went to an all night diner called The Pitt Grill.
It was really oldey timey and retro neat. There were only a couple other people in there. They had a great jukebox which I played and they seemed to appreciate. They were really nice and the food was delish.

DM had The Hobo Breakfast, LOL. OINK.

I had a BLT with fries.Of course it was excellent. I wish we had someplace like this in COS.

After sobering up we went out and tried to take nighttime pictures of The Texas Theatre which is where Lee Harvey was apprehended (don’t get me started). But I guess we need to read up on nighttime timed exposures cuz neither of us got any good shots. But across the street from our hotel was this super skeevy hotel with a cool sign so we took pics of that instead.

More on Day Four later!

Dallas Day Two

Sunday was Mike’s birthday! Checked out of the crazy hotel and wanted food! I had read that this place Bubba’s was the best fried chicken in Dallas so we wandered over there. When I saw it was “fast food” I didn’t want to go. Also I kinda wanted breakfast. So we parked the car and walked around but didn’t find anything better. As it turns out, it isn’t really fast food, just set up that way- you order at the counter and take it to your table yourself. But they serve it on real plates and with real flatware and all that. Plus OMG it was GOOD. I dunno about the best in Dallas since it was the only fried chicken we had (unless you count chicken strips which you know I had several of) but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was. We got a seat outside and oinked out. The rolls were the best ever. I don’t usually like dinner rolls but I wanted to take these home they were so good. And the chicken was good and fried but not greasy. The mashed potatoes were whipped perfectly and the green beans were super tasty, too.

Lots of these birds around. We wondered if they were mockingbirds. Anyone know? This one was particularly mean looking so we named him Kenny.

On the way back to the car, I saw this sign and it made me LOL for some unknown reason so DM went over and stood by it, making me LOL even harder. I dunno, guess you had to be there.

What Would Jesus Eat?

After lunch there was more driving and more getting lost, then checking into another cool hotel, The Belmont. This one was really cool, tho. But it was only about 3:00 and the bar didn’t open till 5. There was nothing much in the immediate area so we found a liqour store. Texas liquor laws are almost as absurd as Colorado’s (we have no alcohol sales at all on Sundays) at least in Texas you can buy beer and wine. DM bought me this FANCY wine and some 7-UP to recreate a childhood favorite (har) wine cooler concoction. DM got some beer

And we headed to the pool. We were the only ones out there. I napped for awhile and then went for a swim. It was very relaxing and nice.

After the pool and a nap I took DM to a nice BBQ dinner at Sonny Bryan’s downtown which is supposedly famous for BBQ. It was ok, it wasn’t like super amazing or anything. That area is pretty touristy so I felt lucky that we had a decent meal at a decent price so I was happy.

After dinner we walked around down by Dealey Plaza and got a humorous history lesson from an unofficial tour guide, complete with conspiracy theories and everything. We also gave him money.

Next we went over to a neat bar called Lee Harvey’s– it’s tiny inside but they have a HUGE outdoor area with picnic tables and giant firepits. And also, people brought their dogs! It was a full-on dog bar! Best of all, two gin and tonics was $4.50. Sheesh. Then we wanted to watch the hockey game on tv- Dallas was playing San Jose, so we searched for a bar that was playing it, to no avail. We did hit up one more bar that was sort of cool inside. We were the only people there. Two gin and tonics at this one were $4.00. Then we drove around a little more and went back to the hotel. DM wanted to see what the score of the game was so he turned on the TV to find that the game was STILL ON. It was in its 3rd overtime. It eventually went into 4 overtimes! And Dallas won at about 1:30 am after I had fallen asleep.

Dallas Day One and Kenny Chesney Concert

Dallas Airport: Hey, can you get me a soda, some chips….oh and an iPod? Thanks.

Breakfast at Lucky’s. Regional food! I ordered scrambled eggs, biscuits and grits. Grits are like polenta. Only these were really plain so it seemed like I needed to do something to them. But what? Polenta usually has cheese in it or you can go the other way with sugar and milk and stuff. But they didn’t bring any of that along with them so I figured you eat them plain? So for next time: what do I do with grits?

After breakfast we went to a cool antiques/junk store called Lula B’s in an area that was swarming with 20-somethings on some sort of pub crawl. We would have hung around but we were tired and needed to nap before Kenny. But of course we got lost. Mapquest blows. I stopped using it part way thru the trip and bought a regular map but it was also lame. Streets appeared out of nowhere and stopped abruptly, too. Next time I’ll get a name brand map and not some junky thing from a gas station (altho you’d think they’d have good ones at a gas station).

       Anyhow we finally got to the hotel. It looks soooooo cool from the pictures and it kinda was. But bad design abounds! It’s like they designed it with no concept whatsoever what people would actually use it for. The doors and walls to the BATHROOM didn’t go all the way to the ceiling. WTF? Why bother having a door and walls then? The remotes for the high tech heater and tv were something you needed an advanced degree in engineering to figure out and the music in the bar was louder than the music at the concert. It was a nice bar, too. Lots of fluffy chairs and couches and even some bed type seating. It was dark and lit in oranges and browns. But there was NO WAY to have an actual conversation. WTF again?!

  After our nap we headed over to the show. The people at the hotel said there were a bunch of fast food outlets on the way to the show. But there were none. There WAS however a sort of independent fast food type place where I had a delicious BBQ sandwich and DM had a couple of hotdogs. Yummy.

I finally decided on this outfit for the kenny show. I got it at Target. I thought it was pretty cute. The other stuff I bought will have to go back, tho cuz it turned out not to be cute.

Like my new boots?

We started out in the middle section but thought it would get too crowded up there and also wanted to be right on the stage so we moved. We should have just stayed, we would have had a better view. And since I didn’t get my map signed anyway there was no point to being right on the stage.

Here’s Leann at the main stage.

Here she is on the first tee stage (if we would have stayed here we would have had this view of Kenny the whole time)

Even she has to wear one of those ridiculous “I’m not pregnant but I look pregnant” blouses.

People around us kept commenting that her shirt was see thru. I took a bunch of pictures cuz I couldn’t tell at the time but I guess it does sorta look see thru. Ooooooh, scandalous.

Brooks! (or is it Dunn?)

Dunn! (or is it Brooks?)

Mean Kenny (see why I call him Mean Kenny here )coming up from the elevator thing he hurt his foot on last weekend.

More Mean Kenny.

Mean Kenny about to backhand a fan.

Mean Kenny looking drunk and high.

More Mean Kenny.

After the concert we went back to the hotel and I googled Whataburger to find one nearby. I FINALLY got a Whataburger Honey Chicken Biscuit! I’ve been wanting one for over a year and a half when DM used to live near one of their stores. They only sell them between 11pm and 11am and somehow we never were able to get there between those hours. But in Texas we did. It was soooooooooooooooooo good. OMG I’m glad we don’t have Whataburger here cuz I’d eat them every night. OINK.

More Dallas stuff later!