Michelle's Front Page

Recap for vicarious living

March 29th, 2010

p1020715Saturday morning’s drive to Louisville was unremarkable except the joy of listening to NPR for 2 1/2 hours without anyone in the back seat (or front seat for that matter – Steve isn’t a fan) complaining.

I was late (shocker – I know) because apparently my brain isn’t smart enough to calculate a 1 hour time change.  I was aware of it.  I mentioned it.  I apparently thought it meant I had an extra hour rather than losing an hour.  I was exactly 1 hour late.

After checking out the restaurants in the hotel and wandering a few blocks only to realize none of the restaurants were serving food at 2:15, we headed to Joe’s Crab Shack.  It might not have been new or different but Joe knows big fruity drinks.  And the food was better than it was the last few times I was there (or maybe it was the drinks – who can say?).  We laughed.  We drank.  We provided a little entertainment for our young waiter.  We ate.  We tried really hard not to boo the waitresses.  If you’ve been to Joe’s, perhaps you’ve seen the wait staff stop during specified songs and dance.  They have little routines and climb up on tables and chairs when one of the songs come on.  In the past, it was quite entertaining and the staff seemed to have fun with it.  YMCA started to play and the waitresses grabbed little signs with the letters on them instead of doing the motions with their arms.  And they were mostly phoning it in – no one was having fun.  Finally a few of the guys started doing it right, including our waiter which earned him drunken praise and an improved tip.

p1020682Self portrait

We stumbled walked back to our hotel and laid in our beds talking about how luxurious it was to be able to lay there in the middle of the day with no children bothering us.  Then we took turns going to the bathroom alone.  No one knocked.  No one barged in.  No one needed anything in the 45 seconds it took each of us to go to the bathroom.  Luxury.  We wanted to nap but decided not to waste this precious child free time unconscious.

p1020681It was after 5 and no shops appeared open so we decided to wander a little south to the Zappos outlet.  You know Zappos?  Yes, that Zappos.  Purse and shoe shopping without children?  I was giddy with excitement.  However, the outlet didn’t live up to my imagination.  Unless you are a hooker or a 75 year old grandmother, there wasn’t much you would want. It was truly the left over dregs…things that no one would buy or returns that had been worn too obviously to resell online.  The only exception was kids shoes – I didn’t buy anything but there were a few  pairs of kids shoes I considered.

p1020693We had a very late dinner around 9:30.  Then a couple of drinks in a bar in hotel.  There was a prom going on – it was fun to see the dresses and overhear the girls in the ladies room.  We managed to stay out until 12:15 and then retired for the night.

The next morning we had reservations for brunch.  It was heavenly.  No one informed me that part of the restaurant revolved…until I realized something was terribly amiss because we were moving but the table next to us was not. Yes, I’m a classy broad.

The food was lovely but the opulence of lingering over a meal and not having to cut up any one else’s food was better than the food itself.  We felt quite pampered.

I’m embracing my new southern home – I tried shrimp and grits.  And I loved them.  We spent 2 hours lingering over brunch.  There was even a chocolate fountain on the dessert table.  And of course I took photos of my food.

Sadly, we headed home.  I was happy to see my girls and Steve but could have stayed another day or two without any trouble. We’ve decided this will be a semi-annual event.  I’m already dreaming of October.

Shrimp and cheesy grits


Waffle w/blueberries, strawberries and whipped cream.  The waffle was amazing.


The dessert table


A sampling of goodies


In the dining room




Proof we drank something other than booze


It certainly wasn’t the wild and crazy weekend it would have been 10 years ago but it was just what this momma needed.  Can’t wait to do it again!

PS Does anyone have a good recipe for cheesy grits?  I looked quickly on allrecipes and the couple I found used Velvetta…I can’t believe that the ones I had this weekend contained processed cheese food.

This entry was posted on Monday, March 29th, 2010 at 2:02 pm and is filed under travel. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

14 Responses to “Recap for vicarious living”

  1. Anne Says:

    Sounds like it was a great weekend, I sooo need one like that!

  2. Lynn Says:

    Oh, I love me some shrimp and grits! I found a recipe years ago that is sinfully easy. Cook 1 cup of instant grits. (according to package directions – except my Mama taught me to always use milk, not water). In greased 2 qt pyrex, put cooked grits, 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar (or more, more is always good!) and a can of cream of chicken soup (I know it sounds weird but it works). Mix it all up. Sprinkle a little more cheese on top for good measure and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Yum!!

    Glad you had a nice weekend. I am jealous!

  3. Heather Says:

    Um, your weekend sounds wonderful!!! Glad you had a great time!! And your description of the target customer for the Zappos outlet made me laugh out loud! For real!!

  4. Becky Says:


    Here’s Paula Dean’s recipe:
    They are pretty yummy. Paula Dean the queen of southern cooking! I must confess that this northern girl thinks that Shrimp and Grits are pretty tasty! Grits are basically polenta anyway! Enjoy!
    Baked Garlic Cheese Grits

    Recipe courtesy Paula Deen

    Prep Time:
    10 min
    Inactive Prep Time:

    Cook Time:
    50 min


    12 servings


    * 6 cups chicken broth
    * 1 teaspoon salt
    * 1/4 teaspoon pepper
    * 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
    * 2 cups regular grits
    * 16 ounces Cheddar, cubed
    * 1/2 cup milk
    * 4 large eggs, beaten
    * 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
    * 8 ounces grated sharp white Cheddar


    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 4-quart casserole dish.

    Bring the broth, salt, pepper, and garlic powder to a boil in a 2-quart saucepan. Stir in the grits and whisk until completely combined. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the grits are thick, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the cubed Cheddar and milk and stir. Gradually stir in the eggs and butter, stirring until all are combined. Pour the mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle with the white Cheddar and bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until set.


  5. Rachael Says:

    Sounds fabulously unscheduled and relaxing!

    I have a good recipe for cheese grits that I make every Christmas morning for brunch, from Emeril Lagasse. I found it on the Food Network site years ago and have a printed out copy, but I checked for you and it’s still there! It uses Gruyere, which is pricey, but DELISH.


  6. Kim Says:

    Glad you guys had fun. Next time you need to wander down to 4th Street Live for evening entertainment – good comedy club – fun bars. I’ll also think of some better places to eat then Joe’s for your next trip….believe me….Louisville can do MUCH better. :)

  7. Julie P Says:

    So glad you had a good time. Love that you take pictures of food. It makes me feel like I’m not the only not truly crazy person who does that.

  8. Bobbi Says:

    sounds like Heaven!!! I am glad you had fun and got away. You didn’t mention your family you came home to. Did they all survive????

    Hope Sabrina’s ear infection is better. She has fooled you many times!!

    Isn’t it fun to get away? It goes by way too fast!

  9. Ruthie Says:

    The very best cheese grits I had were made with stone ground grits and pimento cheese. They were fabulous! Sorry, no recipe…but how hard could it be? Stone ground grits, cooked. Butter probably. Pimento cheese. Mix! You’re good with recipes…see what you come up with then let us know the best!

  10. Sarah Says:

    Michelle! Glad you had a nice time in the ville!! Sorry I did not let you know ahead of time at how much of a disappointment Zappos was!

    And, I am sorry the only food fare you found was Joe’s! There are so many places that could have represented Louisville so much better with just a small drive or longer walk! For your next visit, I will hook you up with a list!!

  11. Sarah Says:

    OK, WordPress will not let me leave a second comment, so here is a cut and paste… hope it doesn’t show up twice!

    Oh… and here is a fun Louisville Cheesy Grits recipe from the Junior League cookbook!!


    And some other cool Kentucky traditional recipes to serve for your Derby brunch!


    And one more…


    Bon appetit!

  12. Melany Says:

    Your post made me so hungry. And not for the greek yogurt awaiting me in the fridge!

    I love that you and your friend met up for a weekend – just the two of you. I never do that and need to!

  13. Sonia in MO (FTC) Says:

    Good for you for getting a way for a few days! Looks like such a fun weekend! It’s been years since I had one like that with a good friend… I miss those times!

    That waffle picture almost did some serious damage to my diet – yum!!!

    My mom has a great cheese grits recipe she makes every Christmas…. it’s so yummy and I don’t think there’s a drop of Velveeta in it. I’ll have to wrangle it out of her and send it to you.

  14. dana Says:

    I had a great time living vicariously through your trip Michelle! Thanks for the great read. It looks like a yummy, carefree, very enjoyable time. I’m glad you had the chance to have a couple of days for yourself. Kudos to Steve for helping that to happen, good hubby, good daddy!

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