Monday, October 11, 2010

When in Doubt, Italian

We finally had a really good meal tonight.  We spent most of the day just knocking around, taking it easy.  This evening we met my brother and his family for supper at a nearby Italian restaurant.  We shared a really nice meal with lots of stories, and laughter.  The food was delicious.

Happy and Full!
Joe likes to make little care packages for the kids when we visit, so today, before we met them for supper, we spent a little while in the infamous "99 cent store."  Joe LOVES that place.  We don't have them in Virginia and the Dollar Tree just does NOT hold a candle to the 99 cent store!  Every trip to California includes at least one trip to the 99 cent store, where Joe has fun trying out all of the toys and looking at all of the interesting things offered for such a small price.

Filling up at the 99 cent store!
Since we will be visiting with friends in Redondo Beach next week, we took the opportunity to pick up some goodies for their son too.  By the time we found our way back to the parked car, Joe was ready to make the little gift packages.
At dinner, after we'd all had our fill and while the coffee drinkers were enjoying their after dinner cuppa, Joe disappeared for a few minutes.  He returned with a box.  Everyone asked what was in the box, and he told them there were puppies in the box ...  Well, these kids, 15 and 13 years old are not that easily fooled, but we all had a good laugh.  Joe then proceeded to produce from the box the four little gift bags he'd made -- one for each of the family... BECAUSE... apparently, Ray and Denise are ALSO "kids!"

We sat and talked a while longer, took pictures of the kids and Joe, all wearing sunglasses from their gift bags, and had the waiter take a couple of all of us.

Gift Bags!
Haley... all grown up!
Joe Clowning Around with the Kids
Making me Laugh!
Haley, Andrew and Joe sporting Sunglasses

When the coffee was finished, we made our way out to the parking lot, where Andrew, my nephew, took the keys his father handed him.  He has his learner's permit and is driving his family around these days.  We said our goodbyes and climbed in our rental to head back to the hotel.  As we followed them out of the parking lot, I thought, it's always the same... when in doubt, choose Italian... somehow, it is ALWAYS good!  And then I watched Andrew as he drove through a yellow light and KNEW that inside that vehicle, my brother and sister-in-law were saying....."slow down, slow down, slow down....OK, just go through!!!"  I have to say, I do NOT miss those days of teaching my kids to drive!

It was really nice getting to see them.  Living on opposite sides of the continent, we don't get to see each other very often, but we always enjoy ourselves when we do get together.


Sharon said...

Glad you got good food, good company and good times!
I'm happy my days of learning permits and kids is OVER! Five kids - maybe the reason I'm so gray?

aswesow said...

You and Joe don't look like folks pre-occupied with food! My son is at that driving stage. My hair is a little grayer. I'm glad we don't have a 99 cent store around wife loves them too!

mixednut555 said...

We don't have 99 cent stores in Hawaii. I really, really miss those stores. The store in our area had fresh fruit and veggies...99 cents for 5 lbs of apples or potatoes! Even fuji apples! Oh well, at least in Hawaii there is lots of free fruit and even fishing is free. But I miss the 99 cent stores.
Today's verification word is biestr.

Judy's Corner said...

Hey Sharon~

Yep, it was a great weekend, and the good food was just the added benefit... And you better believe... I'd be VERY gray had I taught five kids to drive!!!!

Judy's Corner said...

Hahaha aswe!

Joe and I are ALWAYS looking for a good meal!

My best wishes to you and your son ... you will both need it to get through the driving lessons!

Trust me, the 99 cent stores are so far superior to the Dollar Tree, it isn't even a comparison...and it is always an adventure... appeals to the "kid" in us!

Judy's Corner said...


Those prices for fruits and veggies sound awesome! Back in VA I am paying $4.00 for a 5 lb bag of potatoes... crazy!!!(of course, I'm not a potato farmer trying to make a living on growing potatoes either!)

Free fruit and free fishing sounds AWESOME to me!!!