nutbox

We’re really good at weekends. For people who take their chillaxation seriously, we always manage to get a lot done.

Friday was the pre-season edition of Friday Night Meats. We figure the season really hasn’t started til Ryan hosts (we’re the alternate location when he’s out of town). But who knows when that will be? We decided to get it started.

I cut up a bunch of fruit, soaked it in rum and allspice, grilled it, then tossed it with some lime juice and ginger. It was fantastic. I also grilled hearts of romaine in homemade Caesar dressing. I wasn’t a huge fan of that; I need to find a recipe for a dressing that’s not so bland. Regardless, dinner was awesome, and I taught everyone to make elotes.

After dinner, Willis and I got a bonfire going in our firepit. After everyone had left, Matt and I hung out by the fire until it started sprinking around 1am. Sigh. So awesome.

Saturday morning, we went over to the Minneapolis Farmers Market to buy more plants. I wanted some flowers for a planter on the patio, more tomatoes, and herbs. We managed to find okra, too, which means I have pretty much all the ingredients for callaloo growing in my garden right now.

We took a culinary tour of Minneapolis, stopping at Coastal Seafoods, United Noodles (where I found tofu jerky!), and Tropic World Foods. We then stopped at Los Ocampo for carry-out, and had lunch on our patio.

I did a lot of planting.

Around 6:30, we headed over to The Joint to meet Orsi for the Gogol Bordello show. Her soccer-fan friends were there, too, and Robin proceeded to tell me he’d be in Chicago next weekend for the US national team game, too. That rules, though we’re a little jealous that they’re going to see Dillinger 4 on Thursday night. We’re not leaving til Friday!

Matt and I discovered that The Joint has a photobooth. With technical problems, but still. It yielded this gem:

Because we were with a very pregnant lady, we were magically able to walk to the front of the very long line at outdoor stage, get our tickets, go back to the Joint for another drink, then prepare for Gogol Bordello to rock. Which they totally did.

After the show, Matt and I set our sights on Triple Rock, but there were punk-rock kids bursting out the doors, so we went over to Grumpy’s instead. The women’s room sink there was clogged from someone puking in it. Besides, that, though, it was awesome.

Sunday, we went to check out the Kingfield Farmers Market, because 1) it’s practically in our neighborhood, and 2) the Chef Shack was there. I managed to find a tomatillo plant there, and also successfully avoided the yarn booth (danger!). Matt had a hot dog, and we shared some fries from the Chef Shack. Beyond the fact that even their simple food is spectacular, I was in love with the condiment selection. As Matt learned camping, Sriracha is awesome on french fries.

We ran errands, including a stop at Dick’s Sporting Goods. I was thrilled that they were selling camp chairs for $7 apiece; we bought four of them. Now I can stop obsessing about how expensive those crappy plastic lawn chairs are. These are way better for yard-based parties; they have drink holders, after all!

Also, we went to an empty lot near the Mall of America so Matt could practice driving my car. I knew he’d pick up driving a manual quickly. Mine is only tricky because you have to shift out of the lower gears so quickly. Orange Derek just wants to go fast.

In the evening, we planted, mowed the lawn, watered the grass, cleaned like crazy, put up decorative lights in the patio (it now looks like there’s a party at our house all the time, which is fairly close to the truth), grilled dinner, and watched the Stanley Cup finals. I’ve felt pretty out of it with sports the last week, though I can’t say I missed watching the Cavs get knocked out.

You’ll get there next year, LeBron, and I will be watching.

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