Yesterday I had a very shocking food experience. I took my girls downtown to the newly renovated Discovery Place Museum. I could have taken the easy route and packed a lunch for us, but I decided it would be more fun to go out for lunch (if we could in-fact find some real food). I had heard about this place called “Blynk” which is all organic and local and bla bla bla. I called them to inquire about their menu and as it turns out none of their breads or wraps are 100% whole wheat, they couldn’t serve my girls oatmeal (which I know they would eat) past the breakfast hour, and if we ordered one of the egg dishes it might not be as good without the bread that we couldn’t eat. Despite all of this, I thought we could hopefully find something on their menu and make it work. I packed some crackers, nuts, and raisins just in case I needed to supplement.
As we entered the museum to buy our tickets my 3-year-old pointed to the museum cafeteria and said, “They have food here so we don’t need to go to a restaurant.” I replied, “Well, I doubt we can eat anything in a museum cafeteria.” Then I suddenly spotted the tagline under their “Community Café” sign that read, “healthy – local – green.” Hmmm… I added, “Well, maybe we can eat something here after all.” We went in to check out the menu and I got the shock of my life. In the past 2 months we have struggled beyond belief to order real food at restaurants and here at a little museum cafeteria we could actually choose from 2 of the ready-made items off a menu that was so small it only had 5 things to offer in the first place. It was absolutely unbelievable.
I thought for sure my girls would want to share the whole-wheat cheese pizza, but for some reason they said they would rather have the burger. I didn’t really want a burger myself, but I felt like I should order one just because I could. Their burger was prepared with meat from Baucom’s Best 100% grass-fed meat (a local farm I’ve seen at our farmer’s market) and served on a whole-wheat bun. We asked for it to be topped with cheese, but of course had to hold off on the ketchup and sweet potato fries (although they did also offer eggplant fries which were of course deep fried and therefore still against the rules). I divided the burger into thirds and supplemented our meal with some of their other fare, which included fresh fruit, organic applesauce, and organic cheese. All in all, it was an incredibly convenient and tasty meal. I never knew convenience and taste could coexist in a real food world. Thank you Discovery Place for making my day!!
Today I had a very exciting moment when I suddenly decided to make chocolate cupcakes! I had a good excuse because I needed something as a substitute for the birthday cake that was being served at a party this evening. For as long as I can remember I’ve had an extremely big sweet tooth. While the chocolate tortes (shaped into balls) have kept me very happy for the last few weeks, this does happen to be the longest period of time that I’ve ever gone without eating chocolate cake (or any kind of cake for that matter!). So just the thought of making something like this sort of felt like Christmas to me…what can I say. And in case the chocolate cupcakes didn’t turn out that great I also made some carrot cupcakes as a back-up (both pictured without frosting).
Once the first set of cupcakes were done, they looked and smelled just like regular chocolate cupcakes. If I said they tasted like them too I would be lying, but for someone that has gone so long without this sort of thing I have to admit that they totally did the trick for me. And let’s not just focus on what they did for me; my daughters were so excited about having these chocolate cupcakes that I honestly don’t think they even noticed the birthday cake at the party (that we were of course not able to eat). Their response couldn’t have made me more pleased. I do wonder though once the 100 days are over if I will continue to go through this much effort when we leave the house to eat somewhere else. It was so nice that they were happy with my “healthier” cupcakes, but aside from the dessert there was all of the other food I had to bring too. Here you can see a snapshot of everything I had to pack (including the cupcakes, popcorn, hot dogs, hamburgers, whole-wheat buns, fruit, milk drinks, and homemade ketchup) just to ensure we stuck to real food at a party that lasted all of 3 hours! It was definitely a lot of effort and once all of this is over I will have to decide if it will continue to be worth it.