Morning commute traffic in the aftermath of Sandy. This is eerie. Also, I see sun!

Morning commute traffic in the aftermath of Sandy. This is eerie. Also, I see sun!

Anniversary Weekend, Part II (because that previous post was getting LONG)

The next day we scrapped our plans to visit the Brownstone Water Park (those pesky lightning storms were not letting up) and ended up at the legend-wait for it-dary Frank Pepe’s in New Haven for a pizza lunch. Yes, you read that correctly, instead of being all skinny in a swimsuit I swapped it for a mouthful of pizza. Shocking I know. A couple things of note at Frank’s:

1) Go early. Like right when it opens. We didn’t plan it, but showed up about 15 minutes after they opened and found a table to sit out (it’s a seat yourself establishment) no problem. Frank Pepe’s is on a tiny residential street with not much parking except for two huge parking lots on either side of the restaurant (for restaurant patrons only). The constant reviews on Yelp discussed hard to find parking and LONG lines seemed a little over-dramatic when we first sat down. But let me tell you, an hour later when we left, there was a huge line out the door and parking attendants manning the parking lots. Crazyiness.

2) There was this tiny, elderly woman sitting alone in a booth across from us. Couldn’t be younger than 80 or more than 90 pounds soaking wet. And she ordered three large pizzas. They filled up her entire table meant to seat 4 people. And she just sat their happily for hours making her way through the different options before finally asking for some take home boxes. I’m telling you, that is my idea of how I want to be in my golden years. Making my way through an entire table of pizza.

As for the pizza. I don’t know… I mean it was really good. Really good as in we ordered two smalls and figured we’d take home half of each pie and left empty handed but full stomached. But I don’t know if it was stand-in- line for hours on end to experience this pizza. But maybe because I’m more of a Chicago deep dish fan. Best thing ever.

So a very happy 6 years and 3 months or 10 years and 7 months or something in between to my lovely husband. Whom still can crack me up at a second’s notice and still feel so warm and cherished even when he’s calling me by my maiden name – that’s the name he uses when I’m pissing him off.

Anniversary Weekend

10 years and 7 months ago – give or take a couple of weeks, Ryan and I became more than friends. Exactly 9 years and 7 months, Ryan and I decided we’d had enough of these are-we-or-aren’t-we just friends and decided that we were officially a couple. Exactly 6 years and 3 months we said I do. And 3 months ago (give or take a day) we celebrated our 6 year anniversary, which I am just getting around to blogging about. Timely I know!

So three months ago, I had big plans. Plans that involved being constantly on the go, hitting up the Brownstone Water Park, a picnic on the beach with the most delicious concoctions made by yours truly from my newest cookbook Bite by Bite. Except after a couple long work weeks and being out every weekend, we were both pretty burned out and definitely used the excuse of there being a ridiculous lightning storm that lasted about 3 days to tone down our activities. Seriously, how have I not learned in 13 years to always check (oh how ironic today as I’ll glued to their Hurricane Sandy Tracker).

In any case, my delicious concoction planning turned into spinach rolls and a sub sandwich. However, this is incredibly important to point out because Ryan ranked my sandwich as #3 in the world after the White House Sub Shop and Amici’s. I’ll take it!

The reason we were going up to Essex was to enjoy a dinner on the Essex Clipper Train, a 1920s restored dinner train. I had read about it in that book 1,001 things to do before you die that was popular several years back and fell in love with the idea of the dinner train and always meant to go. So needless to say, I was incredibly excited for our date, but also pretty nervous, because I had turned it into a big surprise, taking his dinner order in secretive manners, and not telling him any more other than it was north of where we live in Connecticut. Now for those of you who don’t know where Stamford is, it’s here.

My hint was not helpful. So all this led to me thinking I built it up way too much for it to be fun.

But fun it definitely was. It was a little wet. Thank goodness I always carry an umbrella in my car (a defense against never checking the weather reports) because other people got soaked waiting to board the train.

We were seated at a lovely table for two facing the window and a lovely gentleman (the conductor) came by and stamped our (fake) tickets and asked us if we were celebrating anything special. I happily explained we were celebrating our 6 year anniversary. Let this be a forewarning to anyone planning on taking this train ride in the future. Know what you are getting into. I thought that he was just a friendly guy. But before dinner came we were presented with a Happy Anniversary cake. No, not cake slice. Cake. Like one of those cakes that serves 6-8 people. And they placed it in front of us…. Before the dark chocolate cake dessert plate. Amazing gesture…. Huge sugar coma!

Hello blurriness!