More: Labor Day/Boyfriend’s Birthday Weekend

My birthday always falls on Memorial Day weekend, while the boyfriend’s is always on Labor Day, making them perfect for weekend-long celebrations!

We started, of course, opening gifts: the new chess table is perfect for our Midtown porch. Then we had one of our favorite inventions: grilled cheese with chips in the middle. Even more delicious after a run (or walk… I’m still not running…)

The afternoon was spent at Animal Ark, a sanctuary for wild animals that can’t live on their own anymore. It was a hot hot day in the dessert, but the black bears, pumas, cheetahs, jaguars, and several birds were worth seeing. Then off to Reno’s Rib Cook-Off: the french fries with pulled pork from BJ’s are the best!

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Finally, we finished our weekend (which was filled with food, drinks, and friends as seeing on the previous post), with a picnic by the river, watching Slick and Parker play in the water, and a trip to the new luxury theater in Sparks to watch “Guardians of the Galaxy”. I totally recommend the new movie theater: they serve beer, wine, food, and have comfortable reclining chairs for a reasonable price.

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More: The Boyfriend’s 1920’s Themed Birthday Party

The boyfriend and I love to dress up, so on his actual birthday we decided to have a 1920’s/Gatsby themed party. With my flapper headband and the boyfriend with his cane, we first headed to Rapscallion for dinner, one of the best and oldest restaurants in Reno. Besides, delicious seafood, they have great specials on set-menus and drinks too!

Then we met everyone at Death and Taxes, a pretty cool bar in Midtown, perfect for the theme. We had a blast sipping on the super expensive but amazing cocktails. It worked out great, as most of the people who couldn’t make it to his surprise birthday party made it to this event instead. We were not the only people in town that decided to have a themed party though: later that night we mingled with a Greek group as well.

1920's Birthday Party

1920’s Birthday Party

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More: The Boyfriend’s Surprise Birthday Party

Two weeks before the boyfriend’s birthday, I told him I was inviting a couple of MY friends over for a “summer party”, but what was really happening was a surprise birthday party for him. I managed to get the boyfriend’s contacts from his phone, but I was afraid I wouldn’t get a good turn out since a lot of people were out of town camping that weekend.

The day of, I gave the boyfriend an errands’ list for him to do before going to the “summer party” at 5. I had told everyone to show up at 4 pm, and, thank goodness half of them did, because the boyfriend decided to show up at 4:15! We heard him coming in and hid behind the counter. When he came into the house, everybody shouted “Surprise!” It took him a couple of minutes to figure out what was going on: what was everyone doing there early? why had I invited his friends to MY summer party? And then he saw all the birthday decorations and realized the party was for him.

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday!

He actually still had to finish one more errand for the day, so since not everyone was there yet, he left and came back half an hour later once everybody had arrived. We all hid again and shouted “Happy Birthday!”

It was a fun filled birthday with carrot cake and s’mores, but I almost ran out of food since more people than we were expecting showed up. Thank you so much everyone for being a part of this!

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Eating: Peach Cobbler

It’s peach time! The boyfriend’s backyard tree is just bursting with peaches, so this past weekend I picked a few to make a cobbler. I looked up some recipes online and I chose one that had two many complaints about one thing: it’s too sweet! Well, that’s my kind of recipe. It turned out oh so sweet and so wonderful! The texture is more like a cake or bread pudding than a flaky cobbler, but I actually liked that better. If I had time, I would just make dozens of cobblers and freeze them for the year.

I love peaches!

I love peaches!


Peach Cobbler

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 cups of sugar, divided

1 tablespoon of baking powder

Pinch of salt

1 cup of milk

5 cups fresh peaches, peeled, cut in quarters

1 tablespoon lime juice

Ground cinnamon and nutmeg to taste


Melt butter in a 13×9 baking dish. In a bowl, combine dry ingredients (use just one cup of sugar!). Add milk to form a batter. Pour over butter, but do not stir.

Bring the remaining cup of sugar, peaches, and lemon juice to a boil over high heat. Pour over batter, but do not stir. Sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg.

Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes.

Makes 10 servings of 325 calories each.


2014 Summer in Reno: running, eating, and more

I finally spent most of the summer in Reno this year and while I had plans to run everyday, go to the beach in Tahoe, and take short road trips here and there, I spent most of my time relaxing, going to Artown events, and eating. Not that I didn’t want to run: I tried, and one week I even did over 15 miles, but July in Reno is just way too hot, over 90, to be exercising outside. Even at night it was crazy hot, so all I could do was walk around Virginia Lake at 10 pm with the boyfriend. Not that I didn’t want to go to Tahoe either: I took the boys there as soon as I came back from Brazil, and then I had to work at the college for a week. I tried going to the beach after work everyday, but, of course, it rained non-stop that week and after that I just gave up; however, we did spend the day building a raft in Tahoe for our first day back to work.

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Nevertheless, it was a great summer with art shows, plays, and concerts. Every July there is an art festival in Reno called Artown. There are so many events to choose from! The boyfriend and I went to an art show of a Brazilian artist (Marcio Decker), a local performance of the Broadway show “Avenue Q”, and another play called “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare”, which attempted to show the audience a fun and quick version of all of Shakespeare’s comedies and tragedies in less than 2 hours. Artown is not only for people: one day at the park they had the dogs do some paw painting. Slick and Parker are quite talented 😉 Finally, this summer, I went to a Lady Gaga concert at Harvey’s Outdoor Arena. Super fun, although I was expecting more craziness from her fans!

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I shouldn’t even start naming all of the restaurants the boyfriend and I have been to this summer. I think I only cooked twice in the past two months: my Brazilian pancakes for dinner, and American pancakes for breakfast. I think even the boyfriend was at the kitchen more than me, making lasagna and chicken croquettes. It was nice to seat on the porch watching all the Midtown action, or having friends over for some s’mores in my backyard. Speaking of friends, we went to a fun French party at the O.’s: nutella crepes, croissants, and lots of cheese, and another great get-together at T.’s where we watched “The Wizard with Oz” paired with a Pink Floyd soundtrack.

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As for the restaurants I wasn’t going to name, I have to give a shout out to at least a couple. A new favorite breakfast place is Little House on Center Street. For dinner, the Santa Fe Restaurant, a family-style Basque restaurant downtown, cannot be beat. Okay, now I’m hungry also thinking about the food trucks downtown, fish tacos from Bistro 7, sushi from Kei in Carson, and even the burger from Johnny Rockets. Although not a restaurant, the Greek Festival had an amazing baklava as always.

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Then on my last day of summer vacation, the boyfriend and I spent the day relaxing in Genoa. We went for a jog downtown, had a drink at Nevada’s oldest bar, soaked at the hot springs, and had a nice four-course dinner at David Walley’s restaurant. After all, you don’t need to travel the world to have a fun, relaxing, and nice summer vacation.

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