Tag Archives: salad

Post-classes: Vacation Day Nine (Tallahassee: Edward Ball Wakulla Springs Park)

I decided to take my parents to Wakulla Springs on their last day here, because it was a sunny day and the last time I had attempted to take it in it had started pouring rain as soon as we got on the trail. It turned out to be a great decision because we saw plenty of turtles, alligators, and even got a chance to see manatees in the wild! This is what I’d been hoping to show my parents all along, so I’m glad we all got a chance to experience it together. If you go to Wakulla Springs, I STRONGLY recommend taking the river boat tour. It’s reasonably priced and without it you most likely will have a very difficult time spotting anything. the glass bottom boat tour wasn’t running when we went, because of “dark water” but we still saw plenty. I highly recommend visiting this park. Also, you will get to see the untouched “real” Florida if you take the tour (from the boat), at the end of the stretch of spring where people are allowed to go, and where they only visit a few times a year. The first and third movies in The Creature of the Black Lagoon series were filmed here, as well as Tarzan. If you’re going to take the trail anytime in the spring/summer, wear bug spray! I got many mosquito bites. We did see some lizards though.

main sign

We even got to see a turtle on our way into the park, crossing the street! The car you see in the sign above contained people that also stopped to admire the turtle.

turtleeeee

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beautiful

so nice

There is also a swimming area, a beach-y place to lay about in the sun, and a lodge with a soda shop (for milkshakes, hot dogs, etc.) and a real restaurant where we chose to eat lunch.

lodge

outside

ceiling

picture

Here’s the menu:

menu one

menu two

We got the Chicken Caesar salad, Po Boy shrimp sandwich, and the grilled shrimp salad.

caesar

shrimp salad

sandwich

Everything was great! My parents agreed the shrimp was very fresh and I thought my salad was great too. The lodge also offers lodging (imagine that) and beer/wine. Anyway, highly recommended, and a great way to end my parent’s visit.

lizard!

Post & photos by: Melissa

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Post-classes: Vacation Day Four (Atlanta: Ria’s Bluebird, Atlanta History Center featuring beautiful houses, & Frank’s Family Restaurant)

Today we started out at Ria’s Bluebird, a local breakfast/lunch place for a decidedly more fancy breakfast than yesterday. We decided to try a nearby restaurant.

bluebird

creepy bbird

menu one

menu 2

We had the french toast and the pancakes (french toast w/Nutella cream cheese and pancakes with pecans and caramelized bananas.) Both were great, but the pancakes were the clear winner, despite how much I love Nutella.

French toast

pancakes

We also tried the house-made sausage patty and it was great; it was flavorful without being too spicy and perfectly cooked.

patty

Then we went to the Atlanta History Center, which features some civil war exhibits along with gardens and an olympic exhibit, as well as a historic house (The Swan House) and entry to the Margaret Mitchell house, along with traveling exhibits. This was in a very nice part of town which encompassed many beautiful homes, which I also was interested in and took many pictures of. I would say it’s worth a visit if you’re interested in civil war history, history of the south, or general Atlanta history. Also if you enjoy pretty gardens and historic homes. If you’d just like to see some gorgeous Atlanta homes it’s worth a drive through the neighborhood. It’s also worth taking a tour of the Swan House.

canon

musical

animals

piggy

rooster

quilty

turtle

clothing sign

dress1

dress2

Next, the houses!!

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We also came across a bit of history (see sign)

signpost

description

We stopped at Frank’s Family Restaurant for dinner. It doesn’t look like much and it’s attached to a gas station but it was decent food, considering that.

franks

This was on our way driving south to Tallahassee, not too far from Atlanta. We had the calamari appetizer, salad, sausage and peppers entree and complimentary breadsticks. Overall it was good value for the money and not a bad place to stop in a town that didn’t offer much else.

calamari

salad

bread

pasta/sausage

Post & photos by: Melissa


Cranberry Pecan Spinach Salad

First I thought I’d start this post off by sharing a bit of the lovely spring weather I’ve been lucky enough to experience lately…

lovely lake

And show your our ducks. It’s a Muscovy duck, I believe.

ducky

Anyway, I’ve been really busy lately and haven’t been cooking a lot, so I decided to try eating healthy by re-creating a salad that I had in a hotel restaurant over the summer during my road trip. The restaurant is Kahill’s Steak-Fish Chophouse in South Sioux City, Nebraska. It was the BEST restaurant we visited during the trip and even though if you know anything about me you know I’m not into salad or most raw vegetables, this was the best salad I have ever had. All I had to remind me of the ingredients was an at-best blurry picture of the menu.

tah-dah

So, without further ado, here is my take on this salad. This recipe is for TWO SERVINGS but ingredient amounts can be adjusted according to your preferences. Obviously to make this salad vegetarian-friendly you can just remove the bacon!

Ingredients:

4-6 oz. Baby spinach
1 pear
1/8 cup gorgonzola cheese
2 strips bacon
1/4 cup red onion
4 oz. spiced pecans (RECIPE HERE, or use own recipe, or purchase from store)
1/4 cup crasisins or dried cranberries
Cranberry vinaigrette (to taste. I couldn’t find this so I used raspberry pomegranate vinaigrette but I find that this salad doesn’t even need dressing)

Recipe:

1. Wash and drain spinach.

2. Chop pear into small cubes.

pear cubes

3. Cook bacon and crumble into desired size.

bacon-y

4. Finely chop red onion.

5. Add all ingredients to bowl and toss.

tossed

6. Serve with or without your vinaigrette.

salad complete!

with vinaigrette

7. Enjoy!

Post & photos by: Melissa


Saving money: Why you should sign up for store emails/coupons/etc.

I thought I would give Earth Fare, a (semi) local health food store a chance again today. I normally shop at the chain, Publix, and Earth Fare has a good philosophy of only stocking more natural foods that do not contain high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors, etc. I was pleased to see that they emailed me this coupon:

While this might not actually be the most “Italian” of meals I was really excited and headed there around 4 pm. I found everything and thought I would share this with you, in case your local health food stores offer email coupons. They can be a great way to save money. Dinner for $5 is always a deal in my book.

Another feature Earth Fare offers is a list of printable coupons from their website. You simply select the coupons you’re interested in by clicking on them and then hit “print coupons.” They had some pretty good deals as well, just nothing I was interested in purchasing at this time. As for me, I plan on making a salad and having that spaghetti with some meatballs. Be sure to check out your own local health food stores and good luck!   🙂

Post by: Melissa
Photo courtesy of: Earth Fare