Our January Part 2: A Weekend with my Mom & Pete & Lotsa Local Eats!

Happy almost weekend!!

Jumping right into Part 2 of January!…Moose just keeps growing and growing.

And so does baby girl- her kicks are powerful as ever. I absolutely cherish every single movement <3

Moose man wasn’t feeling quite himself starting on Sunday, January 23rd. He didn’t have his normal energy, and when he started refusing his food we knew something was up.

I didn’t have any days off until later in the week, and neither did DJ to take him to the vet, so we did the chicken and rice routine for a couple days to see how he’d do. We also didn’t want to take him to the normal dog daycare since there are so many dogs, so we frantically reached out to a dog sitter, Marie, on Rover who we had chatted with before. She is amazing to work  with, knows dogs well and agreed to take Moose for the days we worked that week to make sure he was rested and cared for. We felt extremely relieved knowing he was in good hands and would get the rest he needed.

On January 24th, I woke up to this spectacular sunrise before work.

We had another intense snowfall while I was at work that day. I was worried I wouldn’t be able to drive my car home, so DJ met me at work and sussed out the situation. He said the roads were good enough, so he drove my car in front of me very slowly, while I trailed with his truck. We picked up Moose on the way home, and he was a little better, but still not 100%. We decided to give it one more day to see if he would fully recover since he was seeming more himself.

On Tuesday, the 25th, he was still not himself all the way and was still occasionally refusing food. I didn’t love the idea of not getting him checked out for another couple days and couldn’t gauge how urgent this was, so we called Vet ERs in the area to see if he could come in. We were cited wait times from 2-8 hours, and it was already 9:30 pm. We decided to do a virtual ER vet visit through Vet Triage for a flat rate of $50 just to see if we were ok to wait until Thursday to take him in. It was amazing service. The vet walked us through a step-by-step physical exam of Moose, asked us a bunch of questions and reassured us he was well enough to wait to go to the vet when I had off. He sent a follow up report with OTC meds to help Moose, tips and tricks to stimulate his appetite and warning signs to look for. It was the BEST service, and I highly recommend!!

A little more about Rover, we are so grateful we found this service! Marie sends a “Rover card” after each visit to let us know how everything went along with tons of pictures throughout the day!

Wednesday, January 26th, Moose really turned the corner and even played a bunch with the other dogs there. Here is the Rover card from that day:

On Thursday, January 27th, Moose was back to near 100%. I still took him into the vet to be safe- they didn’t find anything concerning, said his stool looked fine and he should continue to recover. Whew, what a week for our little guy. So so relieved he’s ok!

I spent the rest of the day cleaning the house, getting groceries and knocking out other things on the to-do list before my mom and Pete arrived on Friday! We hadn’t seen them since early August  (before I was even pregnant!), so to say I missed them would be an understatement.

Friday, January 28th, they flew in around noon. I met up with them and my Grandma Violet at Olive Garden for lunch. Nothing like OG’s never ending soup, salad and breadsticks!! I’d been craving this meal, so it really hit the spot.

It was so good to catch up with them all.

I headed back to the house to get some things done for work in the afternoon, and then they joined me after a few hours. They were so excited to finally meet Moose after the countless pictures and videos I have sent them, and I was able to give them a little tour of the townhouse.

In the evening, we went to The Rail near DJ’s work for dinner. I haven’t been here since we moved back, but it’s such a great local spot.

We started with these smoked gouda mac and cheese bites which were to die for and delicious, perfectly crisp brussels.

While they are primarily a burger spot, I have been on a massive salad kick lately and couldn’t resist their mandarin chicken salad. It was oh so yummy.

They also have some of the best shakes. DJ ordered a chocolate one with his burger and fries, so I was happy to steal a few sips.

Pete’s bday was on the 23rd, so for a little belated bday dessert after dinner, we stopped by to get his favorite baked goods in town from Gasoline Alley (which, fun fact, happens to be owned by Rachel’s extended family).

Pete particularly loves their Carrot Cake, Hummingbird Cake and double whipped cheesecake. They were out of the cheesecake, so we had their regular cheesecake which was still very good. My favorite of the three was actually the hummingbird cake – mmmm mmmm!

They also brought the sweetest gifts for baby girl. I teared up reading the words in the picture frame. 

My mom found this book, On the Night you Were Born, and it is so special. I highly recommend it you are looking for a wonderful baby book.

I have been reading various stories to baby girl every day since around 23 weeks. Each night my mom and Pete were here, either I or my mom read to her. My mom even got to feel baby kick over the weekend, which was so awesome <3

On the morning of Saturday, January 29th, my mom and I started the day with a session at Orange Theory.

Before leaving, my mom soaked up some Moose cuddles with her coffee. Can you tell she lives in Texas with the way she is bundled.. indoors? LOL! 
Orange theory was so fun, although I had to do it a bit modified. While pregnant, I can’t push myself like I usually do and have to pay close attention to make sure my heart rate doesn’t get too high, but it was still a great workout. I can’t wait to go back to it regularly eventually!

Pete and my mom told us to save up some projects for when they were here, and they helped us big time! While at Orange Theory, Pete worked on getting the crib assembled 💕. He did it so quickly & it makes me so happy every time I peak in the nursery seeing it there! He also measured for the wallpaper in the nursery and fixed our water tank to the guest room. My mom later helped me make some decorating decisions and scour the internet for the perfect pot for our snake plant, so it was a very productive weekend around the house! 

For lunch, I made sure to have the famous Five Star Hotdogs on hand for Pete- they are some of his favorite and they’re local. My mom whipped up the hot dogs in a cast iron pan for the guys, and she and I had some salad and yogurt. I can’t get enough of the greens lately!!! I’ve wanted salads at least once if not twice a day.

(Not pictured- all the hot dog fixin’s!).

After lunch, we went to a matinee of Redeeming Love. Redeeming Love is probably my favorite novel to date. When I saw the movie was coming to theaters while my mom and Pete were here, I knew we had to get it on the schedule! My mom actually recommended the book to me, and it’s one of her favorites as well.

I don’t think I had a dry eye for the whole two hours and 14 minutes. The movie had horrible critic reviews, but I’m telling you- this was so well done, and I loved how closely it mirrored the book. Were there cheesy moments? Sure there were, but it was still very good- I highly recommend. Actually funny note about said cheese- I mentioned later that day that I thought my “cheese-detection-meter” broke when I became pregnant. Everything just makes me emotional, and I tend to lean that something is sweet and moving rather than eye-roll cheesy. My mom said to be prepared that with having a baby it will now stay broken forever, lol!!

After the movie, we came back home, got ready for dinner and then headed out to Butcher and Sprout, a place DJ and I have had our eye on since moving here.

They have such a fun mocktail menu. I had their Lima Libre with La Croix, lime juice and soda water- this was so delicious and refreshing with a citrusy tang I was craving.

We started with an order of their truffle tots with shaved parmesan. They were delish! I do have to say the smoked gouda mac n’cheese bites still took the cake for best appetizer of the weekend, but these were certainly tasty.

Now in usual mom-daughter style, my mom and I chose two dishes to split. Since baby girl calls the shots these days, it’s always entertaining to see what she’ll have a hankerin’ for. And this night, it was a BLT. I don’t know that I have ever ordered a BLT off a menu in my life, but out of everything on the menu, that is what stood out to me!

My mom loves a BLT too, so it worked out. It was so good and exactly what I was hoping for. We also split their upstream burger with wild caught salmon, green cilantro, housemade slaw and sriracha aioli on a ginger butter banh mi bun. Also fantastic!!

The guys took a page out of our book & split their Nashville Hot Chicken Sandwich and surf-and-turf burger, which they raved about.

I had to make sure to grab a pic with everyone before the weekend snuck by!

Sunday morning we were up bright and early to get to the 8:30 AM service at church.

This was our first time going to this specific church, and a new friend I met through blogging welcomed us so warmly to the service. After a great service (that I’m pretty sure baby had hiccups during!), we went to Blue Door Cafe, easily the best brunch spot in town.

We put our name on the wait list, and thankfully only had about a 30 min wait. It can be over two hours if you go during the rush, so we were happy with 30 mins!

Once seated, our stomachs growled while looking over the menu.

Since I have been weirdly obsessed with cottage cheese for the last few months, I couldn’t resist their whipped cottage cheese as a little starter. This was light, sweet and delicious and paired perfectly with their banana bread- which we all agreed was the best banana bread we have ever had.

DJ had their monte criso crepe with imported leoncini rosemary ham, melted comte gruyere, ohio maple syrup, & ohio maple dijon, which did not last long!

I opted for their avocado toast, which was not your average avocado toast. It was served with the most incredible multigrain toast, perfectly cooked eggs and a hearty serving of ripe avocado.

I can’t remember in particular what Pete had, but I know he loved it and ate every bite!

And my mom actually ordered my typical go-to, their egg white croissant with sundried tomato, avocado and egg whites on a croissant like you’ve never tasted before!

After a brunch to remember, we came home with full stomachs and sleepy eyes. I had the usual Sunday to-do list to knock out before the start of the work week. DJ had some work to do as well. While we worked on our respective projects, we had football playing in the background. My mom and Pete kept offering to help, but it made me so happy to see them comfortably relaxing in our living room, so I insisted they take the day to relax. For the countless number of times I have vegged on their couch having a relaxing Sunday afternoon, it made me smile to see them doing the same here.

Later that afternoon, we were all surprised we somehow found our appetites again after such a big brunch. I made a cheese and cracker tray for us to enjoy with the game for a pre-dinner snack.

For dinner, the guys had pizza and my mom and I had salads – real chicken for me while she enjoyed some vegan chicken on hers. And of course, I mixed cottage cheese mixed in. 

Then it was bright and early wake up calls on Monday January 31st– 3:30 AM for my mom and Pete to get to the airport and 4:30 AM for me to get to work. It was such a great and memorable weekend <3.

I, DJ and Moose (and baby girl too!) miss them tons already!!

Question for you:

  • What’s the best brunch spot in your town?



19 thoughts on “Our January Part 2: A Weekend with my Mom & Pete & Lotsa Local Eats!

  1. So glad moose is feeling better! Sick doggies are so sad and I can definitely relate. As always your food looks soo yummy and love seeing all you are up to!! Baby girl will be here before you know it. Just so excited for you!!

  2. Poor Moose, but you are right – he is getting big and he’s running or walking down all that dog food and treats for sure. How nice to get together again and your mom was making me smile with her coat in the house. So many nice-looking goodies here – eat away while you have license to do so. 🙂

    1. He really is!! We go through so much dog food it’s crazy 😅 And I guess we go through so much human food now, it’s crazy too, lol!

      Thanks for reading, Linda!! 🤗

      1. Ha ha – Moose is full of energy whenever you do posts about him, especially in the snow and you have a good reason to eat extra portions and indulge right now. 🙂 Take care Mackenzie!

  3. What an incredible visit! All of the food looks mouthwatering and so delicious! I have not been able to tell if Ansley has had the hiccups yet. I know they would be rhythmic taps, but I do not think I’ve felt that. So excited to see her on the ultrasound week after next! She was head-down at both 16 and 19 weeks, so I hope she’s stayed that way. I just love the movements. It’s exciting to share them with family!

    Whenever our furbabies are ill and unable to tell us what is going on, it is so stressful! I’m glad Moose is back to himself. I hope you all have enjoyed a great week so far!

    1. Hi Kori!! I’m so happy to hear you are able to feel her now!! <3 Isn't it the most incredible thing in the world feeling all their little movement, and how they are growing stronger all the time?

      It really is so stressful, and you're right- them not being able to tell us what's up makes it even worse! Very grateful for vets. Though, we are definitely those first time parents that go for every little thing haha.

      Thanks so much for reading and stopping in 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend, friend!! <3

      1. Yes, I am so grateful to feel her! Sadly, I don’t know exactly when, but I believe around 20 weeks I finally knew I was feeling her. Matt then could feel her very shortly there after, and you can majorly see her movements from the outside. Incredible!

        I’m still that parent! I don’t want to take chances, especially with precious Mason’s diagnosis.

        Also, Matt and I chose a gf hummingbird cake for our wedding, and it had cinnamon cream cheese between the layers and a pb buttercream around the outside. It was amazing! I want to have it again to commemorate our day. Have a fantastic Tuesday!

      2. Aww this makes me so happy to hear!! I’m glad Matt got to feel her too! I love the little rolls you can see from outside the stomach, it is just too cool.

        Yes, absolutely. I feel the same, Always good to be safe than sorry when it comes to our pets <3

        OK that sounds like an actual dream cake!! My mouth is watering!!! Might need to write this down if I ever order a cake for something in the future.

        Have a happy weekend, friend!!!

  4. There is so much delicious-looking food in this one! Olive Garden is one of those restaurants I’ll always love, probably just because it’s nostalgic since we often went there after church when I was a kid. It still gets me every time I see meat on your blog 😀 but I’m glad you’re eating what is right for you and baby.

    Moose is so big! That picture of him next to DJ…wow…you have a grown up puppy!!

    1. YESS! Olive Garden breadsticks after church tasted extra good!! LOL- it still cracks me up about the meat too- I find myself casually eating beef and chicken, and I’m like, “who am I?”.

      He really is so big, can you believe he still has about 5 months of growing left too?!

  5. Hi Mackenzie !!! Moose is becoming a big boy for sure ! It is sweet you are loving every kick and movement When she is a bit older you can talk about them ! That was nice to find someone to care for Moose while you were at work. That sunrise is so nice ! I am glad DJ came to the rescue and you were able to drive his truck home. Thanks for recommending Vet triage, We might have to use it for our Tucker someday . Also Rover is an awesome sounding service too , and they go into so much detail about your dog ! Such a good place to meet up with your Mom and Grandma at Olive Garden !!! It was at Olive Garden on new years eve that we were engaged and changed our titles to Fiancés!!! I bet it was exciting showing them your townhouse. That chocolate shake looks yummy, it is one of my guilty pleasures ( I said one of them !!) Awww look at your Mom , I am sure it is a shock to the body being back in Ohio ! Awww I love Baby girl’s crib !! You did good picking out white . I will make a note of redeeming Love . I am such an emotional person I will need boxes of tissues when i see it ! Baby girl sure is calling the food shots ! Such a beautiful photo of you and “Grandma” . Tell your Mom I say hello ! I am happy you found a new church . You will be welcomed into the church family very well . That was an early start for your Mom and Pete ! But it was a memorable time spent with them before the little Lady’s arrival . I have to say i really like Perkins and I do see there is one in Akron ! Take care, Terri xo.

    1. He is growing soo fast and still has some growth left! Yes, Vet Triage was really great- it’s a great service to use especially if you’re ever unsure of the urgency of something with your pup!
      Aww that’s so special about Olive Garden for you all!
      Haha a good shake is certainly hard to resist 😋

      Thank you for the sweet words about the crib!

      I have seen Perkins around here too but haven’t been in ages!!! I’ll have to keep it on my radar!

      Thanks so much for reading, Terri!! Happpppy Friday!

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