Went to the Cheesecake Factory last night for Mom's birthday. I am continually impressed by the kid's menu there. It's a lot of food (like every other portion), but cooked just right for kids. Miss M got the mac n cheese last night and it was super creamy and had just the right amount of cheese for a little one (and, surprisingly, not greasy at all!). I will try to re-create a vegan copy here at home. The way she ate that food down, you would have thought she had never had anything like it before!! Sadly, they don't have much vegan food on the menu - alright, there is nothing vegan on the menu, unless you special order something. I did find out, after I ordered, that they will substitute a portabello mushroom "steak" for any other protien, but you have to request it, they don't mention it anywhere. Will have to remember that for next time. I already know what I am ordering on my next visit - some Louisiana creole (chicken-less) pasta. My mom and dad got it to split and I tried a little bit of the pasta, so garlicky, so good.
Afterwards, we went to the Mission Inn in Riverside to look at the lights. There are A LOT of lights and A LOT of decorations, but it is all too much and really over the top (unfortunately). Nice that they have an outdoor skating rink open. We didn't skate, but did have fun watching everyone else. About 6:30, Miss M had pretty much had it (she was asleep probably five minutes after I started the car).We tried to stay up last night, however, cracking the champagne at 9 probably wasn't the best idea - LOL. We actually only had a glass each - it wasn't all the good (maybe we've had it too long??). I think SN made it until about 10:30 and I made it to 11:30 - it's really not worth waiting up for if you are alone... Last year, I could only make it to 10:30 and the year before, I think I was in bed at 9:30. hahaha. Based on my track record, for NYE 2010, I should be okay to go to midnight!!!
I'm off to make black eyed peas (if I can find the d**n recipe that I used last year - sigh!), collard greens, rice, and cornbread for dinner tonight. We have been at my Mom and Dad's so much these past few weeks that we really haven't been eating much of the produce from our CSA basket, it almost seemed ridiculous to go to the store for even more food - but, I guess we can start in on big salads and tons (!) of roasted veggies tomorrow.