Thank you all so much for your kind words about our kitchen! I am definitely excited to start cooking up a storm…now I just need to get the motivation 😉 I appreciate all of your tips in that area, too!
It was another crazy fun weekend with the family. M + P Bender got here with my little bro, Eric, on Friday afternoon. I met up with them after work for dinner at McCormick & Schmick’s with Bobby, which was delicious. The next day, we woke up bright and early and headed north! Our first stop along the way? A breakfast trip to the one and only Walker Bros.
If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know how much I love this place It’s still hard to believe I’m no longer living anywhere near it! We started with some freshly squeezed orange juice.
And in true “Bender” fashion, my mom and I split our usual ginormous entrees. The Mediterranean omelette was up first: a fluffy, Greek-style treat with spinach, feta, onions and tomato.
My mom and I split that in half and it was the perfect portion. Then came the Dutch Baby…
Gotta love American portion sizes, right? By the way, the “Dutch Baby” is the smaller version of the German pancake! As big as it looks, it really does get bigger than that (TWSS). However, you would be surprised at just how light the pancake is because it is essentially all air. The actual “pancake” is pretty thin! We topped our respective halves with bananas and strawberries – I probably ate about 1/4 of it (namely, the crust – I love crust!) and called it a delicious breakfast.
After our breakfast feast, we made the short road trip to Milwaukee to meet the rest of the “Benders” for our reunion. It was Bobby’s first time meeting the extended members of our family on my dad’s side, and he did well! The only issue was the fact that he is a die hard Vikings fan in Packer country. I’ll have him converted one of these days…
The best part of the reunion? If you know me personally, you may recognize the significance of this:
It’s all in the name 😉 But the actual best part of the reunion was the fact that I learned a lot about our family back in Poland. Two of my uncles recently visited our “roots” and took a lot of great pictures. I learned the original spelling of our last name (it’s vastly different!) and saw pictures of Papa Bender back when he was still in a diaper! As I mentioned in my last post, my dad is the oldest of ten kids, so there are always a lot of great stories. Below is a picture of 8 out of 10 siblings, their spouses and their kids (including me on the left in the pink!).
Seriously, that’s just the beginning of the clan I think Bobby was a little overwhelmed, but he impressed them all with his Bobbyness and we had a good time.
After the reunion, we made a stop for dinner at my absolute favorite burger joint: Kopp’s!
This place is pretty well-known and very awesome. They have a huge staff that works in an assembly line to make burgers, malts, shakes and pretty much every other quintessential burger joint food.
I decided to truly enjoy the visit and ordered a blueberry malt. Holy yum!!
It was amazing – real blueberries and frozen custard? I’m sold. Of course, I also had to order a “jumbo burger” – I got mine with pickles, ketchup and mustard. Can’t get more basic than that!
The best part about Kopp’s is the ambiance. If you sit down and stay a while, you can enjoy your delicious burger fare while listening to the gentle waterfall
We got back to Chicago that night and were too tired to do anything else but sleep. The rest of the weekend went by way too fast, and before we knew it, my family was saying goodbye But we did get the chance to see the Harry Potter Exhibit at the Museum of Science and Industry. I highly recommend it if any of you HP lovers are coming to Chicago anytime soon! While we were waiting for our tour slot, we took a walk down to the beach and got a great view of the city.
Haha, that first one is pretty cheesy. We were going for the “engagement photo” look because we have yet to really take one. I don’t think I can pull it off!
I have not been doing too much cooking lately, if you couldn’t tell! I’m looking forward to trying some new recipes soon. Sarah gave me a really great book that I’m going to crack open this week.
In the meantime…I have a request!
CALLING ALL QUESTIONS!
I am so, so excited to have the chance to interview Hungry Girl herself, Lisa Lillien, via Skype tomorrow! We will be recording it and I will post the video on my blog either tomorrow night or Wednesday. But as always, I want to know what YOU want to know about! I have a list of questions in mind, but would love to hear from you. If you have a question, just ask in the comments!
See you soon!