Trying to Get Food and Failing Miserably.

Happy Memorial Day! Are you off from work today? I am and I'm celebrating by wearing man-shorts and Charlie Manson hair. I look good.

Disclaimer: This is a long story, but totally worth it in the end.

Last night around 7:45pm, my sister called and asked if we'd had dinner yet. It was impeccable timing because we were being lazy and had only started to open up some leftover freezer packages to throw together something I like to call "Leftover Cafeteria Special Food Surprise." Actually, I've never called it that, but I should because that's basically what it is. Anyway, my sister and her family, along with my mom, were going to our favorite "gourmet burger" restaurant and asked us to join. Not being ones to pass up good food, we threw all of our freezer odds n' ends into ziplock baggies and jumped in the car. 

When we got to the restaurant, we discovered the worst news of my life. 

It was closed.

Not, like, forever closed. Just closed because it was 8:00pm and apparently that's too late for a restaurant to be open on a holiday weekend.

After a short discussion in the parking lot, we opted to move our caravan over to Fatburger. However, by this point, we'd learned our lesson and Eric called ahead to check their hours. And of course, they closed at 8:30pm, which was about the time that we would be getting there.


Since we didn't want to waste any more precious time traveling to another location, because it was becoming apparent that all notable eateries close down at dusk, we decided to go to a chain restaurant called Buffalo Wild Wings because it was located nearby.

Immediately upon entering, I was punched in the face with the sour smell of buffalo sauce. It was sick. Not wanting to be the one to put us back on a restaurant-hunt, I sucked up my disdain and put our name in at the front desk. The host looked like a stereotypical meathead, prettyboy jock. Mouth-breather, for sure. He was rude and dumb and I'm sure his mother is very proud.

I grabbed a menu and looked through the shitfest to figure out what I could eat. Shock and awe, there was nothing. So, we ended up leaving the place five minutes after we'd gotten there. While standing outside, we decided to caravan our group of 10 over to BJ's Brewery. Eric called ahead and they were definitely open. Things were looking good.

Goodish, anyway.

We got to BJ's and what do you know, there's a 45 minute wait. 

By this point, it's 8:30pm, we have five hungry kids on our hands and we know our options are limited.

There happens to be an In-N-Out in the same shopping center as BJ's, so we settle on that and make our way over. 

As we pull into the parking area, a WHOLE BASEBALL TEAM OF HUNGRY TEENAGE GIRLS  RUNS INTO THE RESTAURANT. No joke, like 20 girls piled into In-N-Out, halfway sticking out of the front doors.

While my sister is standing in line (at the very back, practically in a different time zone), she spots an open booth. And even though it would probably be another two hours before we'd even get our food, we stake our claim. A few minutes later, another booth opens up and we take that one too. By this point, our group is pretty disorganized: Tanya is in line, Eric and I are at a booth, two kids are at the other booth. My mom and brother-in-law, Kenny, walk in and they're both shaking their heads, like "What the fuck are we still doing here when there are 200 amazon teenagers in front of us?" 

It was around this time that Kenny's car alarm goes off. Loudly. He had parked right at the front door, so it was obvious that it was his car. He pressed the alarm button on his keys and it turned off. Some re-evaluations took place and Eric and I decided to bail and just grab fast food. Faster than In-N-Out.

One our way home, I got the following text from my sister:

This conversation still makes me laugh.

Apparently, M. thought it would be a good idea to play a game of "Hide" in the car when everyone else got out. And since we'd been in a hurried frenzy to find a restaurant, it just so happened that nobody noticed he was missing. So while everyone was hanging out inside In-N-Out, M. was trying to make his way out of the minivan. Which also explains why Kenny's car alarm went off not once, but two times. 

Long story short (too late), after six failed dinner options (counting our original menu) and the chance to eat with my family, the three of us ended up eating McDonald's at 9:00pm back in our living room, by ourselves.

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You know those days when you have so much stuff going on and you don't have time to think straight, or wash your hair, or enjoy a good TLC marathon of Four Weddings?

That fragile state of being-on-the-verge-of-homicide is precisely where I am right now.

My brain is like "OH MY GOD I HAVE A TON OF SHIT TO DO I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHERE THE FUCK TO START BECAUSE I DON'T HAVE ANY TIME TO THINK ABOUT IT. It's been 12 years since I posted on my blog (not that anyone's noticed), I haven't uploaded any of the 5,238 photos from our Disneyland trip, Eric's birthday is just around the corner and A1 planning needs to take place, the laundry is practically walking itself to the trash can because, at this point, it's beyond washing, oh, and that new job is totally cramping my sleep-till-noon-and-wear-pajamas-all-day style!!!"

Since this is really just a filler post to make myself feel better (about myself), I'm not going to get all long-winded about anything in particular. But I will say that my new job is killer and they bring in free catered food and I work pretty much autonomously, which I love, and it's rad. Also, they bring in FREE CATERED FOOD.

My chins high-fived each other when they learned the good news.

Things are looking up, my friends.

This is not from my catered job, it's from Food Truck night. Whatever, you get the idea. 
I like food.

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Featured Wedding Venue: Madonna Inn

In our search for THE wedding venue, we decided to check out The Madonna Inn. And by "we," I think once you take a look at the place, it will be obvious that I mean me.

Photo courtesy of The Madonna Inn website

The Madonna Inn is a well-known hotel along California's central coast. It's pretty much famous for looking cuckoo and boasting over-the-top decor that would make even Liberace gasp in horror. 

I totally love it.

The hotel offers 110 bedrooms that each have very unique and defined themes. Some of my favorites include:

Old-Fashioned Honeymoon



Austrian Suite

Jungle Rock

I can't help but think all of the kitschy design and flocked wallpaper and velveteen sofas would make for totally bitchin' wedding photo backdrops. Also, these rooms scream HOTEL ROOM PRE-PARTY!!! 

If you're anything like me, I'm sure you're bonkers in love with this place by now.

So we drove up to The Madonna Inn and checked out three of their rental venue spaces.

The first one we looked at was The Venetian Room. It's located on the lowest level and is decorated like Christmastime at The Olive Garden. It has a maximum capacity of 250 guests.

The next room we looked at was The Garden Room. It's located on the second floor and feels a little like a Swiss chalet. There are murals everywhere and it reminded me of the Griswold's European vacation. 

The room seemed pretty dark, but it's probably different when there's an actual event going on.

The last space we looked at was the stage area. This space is typically where the ceremony business goes down. According to the events coordinator, the staircase is usually a big selling point for brides who want to make a "grand" entrance. The room is decorated in red, pink, and gold and there are cherub statues. Also, this stage area opens up to the hotel's restaurant, so I imagine lookiloos would be watching while the wedded couple says their "I do's".

Along the way to the stage area is a fully-stocked bar and seating area.

The exterior of The Madonna Inn:

Check in and lobby 

The restaurant 

Located alongside the 101 

A statue of Alex Madonna (I think...)

if you're ever in the area, make sure to stop by The Madonna Inn. Also make sure to pick me up first because I've never actually stayed there and I'm dying to throw an impromptu photo shoot in one of those rooms.

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No Dinner, Just Dessert. Thanks.

Last night, Eric and I were trying to decide what to make for dinner. Nothing was really "calling" to either of us and we'd already been to the grocery store earlier in the day, so it wasn't like we didn't have plenty of options to choose from. It was sometime during the dinner discussion when my mouth had a flashback to a peach pie that we bought at Food Truck Night last month. Unfortunately, that particular peach pie store was closed on Sundays and it was at this point that I realized I just wanted pie for dinner.

So we drove back to the grocery store and bought a frozen Claim Jumper Lattice Apple Pie.

If you've never had a Claim Jumper pie, they're the shit. Available in several flavors, I can only attest to the apple and peach.

This giant, deep dish dream come true was just what the doctor ordered. And by "doctor," I mean my chins.

We got home and immediately threw it in the oven.


1. Take the pie out of the plastic wrap and put it in the oven at 425 for 60 minutes.
2. Sprinkle with the brown sugar topping and bake for an additional five minutes.
3. Let it sit for two hours.

As you can see, the second step really gives it a homemade touch.

And the third step is totally optional because we only waited 30 minutes and then ate the shit out of it.

On the back of the box, it states that there are *supposedly* 10 servings. I don't know about all that because, apparently, in our house there are only three servings. Luckily, I didn't get a chance to look at the calories or whatever else it is that you're supposed to look at it before strapping on the feedbag, so we'll just say that the apples contribute to the healthy section of the food pyramid and call it a day.

Mmmm. Go get one tonight.

(I was not compensated in any way for this post, I just really love that pie.)

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A Mini Vlog.

This is what happens when I'm bored and home alone.

I think I just stroked out.

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