Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Jeremy's Birthday Bonanza

Jeremy's birthday was yesterday, on the 10th, but we always start our celebrating on the 9th.

On January 9, 1991, my ex-husband and I went out to eat at a Chinese restaurant. Jeremy was a week late, lazing away in warmth and coziness as I was enormous and miserably uncomfortable. But at 3 o'clock in the morning, after going out for our dinner, I started to feel pains. And while he took his sweet time showing up, not appearing 'til 8 p.m. that night after being dragged out with forceps, Jeremy must have decided that he liked Chinese food enough that he wanted more ... at least, that's what his dad always says. And so, every January 9th since, we eat Chinese food.

Jeremy's and my favorite place is the Evergreen Restaurant; the place we'd gone to the night before he was born has closed, so we've at least come up with an excellent substitute!

The lunch specials are an exceptional value: for an average of $7, you get a bowl of soup, a small salad, and a generous plate of your entree served along with rice as well as a spring roll. It's just about the best lunch deal in town!

So, needless to say, the Evergreen is where Jeremy and I ate on Sunday. He took a break from the Atkins diet he and his dad are doing together and indulged in some celebratory Sweet and Sour Chicken (one of his favorite meals ever), along with Wonton Soup. But he doesn't like the ginger salad dressing, so I traded him extra wontons for extra lettuce. I absolutely love the dressing!

I ordered Mongolian Chicken (which is unfortunately not quite as vividly photogenic as Jeremy's meal!), with generous quantities of meat and lots vegetables. It was perfectly cooked, not too spicy. But the portions are always so generous that there was no way that either of us could finish our meals.

And that was just Day 1 of the party. On Day 2, we had cupcakes for breakfast: chocolate and vanilla marbling, per Jeremy's request, with buttercream frosting and a coating of mini M&Ms. What a way to start a morning!

Then Jeremy and I went to lunch at his very favorite restaurant, Conor O'Neill's Traditional Irish Pub. We always order the Galway Bay Mussels in a rich, creamy, luscious, garlicky sauce; and we always order extra bread because the sauce is so amazing that there is never enough served initially to sop it all up. (We had extra sauce once a few years ago, and I mortified Jeremy by asking for a container to take it home in. It was amazing on pasta for dinner the next night!!!) Jeremy actually said that these were so good that they are "conversation stoppers."

Then Jeremy ordered his requisite Reuben, which he orders anywhere that he finds it on a menu. But this one is his favorite, because it may not have the most overwhelming portion of meat but it has the tenderest of any. Jeremy said, "You know how embarrassing it is when you bite into your sandwich and a slab of corned beef pulls out and hangs on your chin 'cause it's too tough to chew???" Well, at Conor's you won't find that, Jeremy assures you!

Believe it or not, I didn't have too much trouble deciding on my own order that day ... some planets must have been in alignment for a brief moment! I chose Conor's Ploughman, a huge vegetable sandwich with melted cheese and pesto mayonnaise, served on whole grain bread. It sounded warm and gooey with a hint of nutrition, and just plain delicious. And it was, when I took one bite! After practically inhaling mussels and bread and rich sauce, I simply couldn't eat the sandwich. But that, in addition to some leftover french fries, would provide a lovely lunch for the next two days at work, wouldn't it??? I was a happy camper ... :)

In closing -- here, in honor of his birthday (which earned him a very generous $10 gift card, too, when I embarrassed Jeremy by asking the waitress if being the birthday boy came with any perks!), is Jeremy in his favorite booth at his favorite restaurant on his own special day ....

8 comments:

Robin said...

You can share this with Jeremy or not... but I have always been a big believer in celebrating the birthday week. That gives lots of leeway on Me-Time. You know as in lots of days being All About Me. Of course, this only applies if this works on YOUR birthday. If no one applies the birthday week to YOU, than all bets are off to extending it to others. Yeah, I am crabby like that. That is what NURTURE is about. Not just nurturing others, but only nurturing those who nurture you. It has to be a 2-way street. And then there is the whole nurturing of self. And you already know you need work there, so I won't get into THAT with you. Hugs and kisses. I would reach through the computer for the delivery on those if I could.

Jenn said...

Now you know how to help celebrate someone's birthday! I'm all about spoiling the birthday people to the fullest! Sounds like he had a fantastic birthday with a fantastic mom!!

Cranberry Morning said...

Such amazing food! And I love it that you established that little tradition of Chinese food on the 9th of each January. :-)

Angela FRS said...

That is such a great tradition. Love the cupcakes, and that veggie sandwich looks divine--I'll bet it made a great lunch!

Dan said...

Happy birthday to your Jeremy!

Jacob's birthday just passed as well, and Meredith made him cupcakes for the party. I have the picture somewhere (I guess i'll need to wait..). They weren't as colourful as yours. I'm assuming those are mini M&Ms? Great idea (that we'll steal for next year).

We also had a cake and icing disaster that was saved by cutting the cake into squares and presenting them in muffin papers as well. I forgot to take pictures of those.

::**::**::**::**Ashley E said...

Monk had his birthday week too! And we ate Panda! I hope he had a great birthday week. Nothing says I Love You like good food and great people!

Great looking sandwiches!

Candace said...

What a great birthday celebration! If I wasn't hungry already, I am definitely hungry now. The cupcakes, the sandwiches, the Chinese food.... ~sigh~ I want to come eat with you sometime, Mary.

Miller Racing Family said...

What a blast. The cake looks wonderful.
Hope all is well with you!

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