Ok, some of that ties back to pretty days and some of it ties into the appearance of fantastic brunch cocktails that are best consumed on patios. Enter my first attempt to make a Bloody Mary from scratch.
It started at the Map Room. One of my favorite bars in Chicago since J introduced me to it 2 1/2 years ago, they do $5 Bloody Mary's every Sunday. Served with a couple olives and a Slim Jim, it's a pretty solid way to spend the day unless it's gorgeous out. The Map Room, for all of it's prettiness on the inside, isn't even a contender for the pageant circuit on the outside.
A couple months ago J's brother and I decided that we were quite adept at being Sunday afternoon drinking buddies. As Jaimeson and I aren't together physically all that often, it's nice to still have a piece of family to kick it with and I'm sure J appreciates the joint calls he gets from us after two hours of laced tomato juice and sidecars. Ok, so J endures the calls and then starts planning how to exact revenge relative to his blog namesake.
(Skewers: Spicy olive, roasted red pepper, banana pepper, cherry tomato, Slim Jim with lime and celery stick on the side and a side car of Three Floyds Alpha King)It was coming upon that time of the year again and D had custody of his little angel, who he shares quite amicably with his ex among others. Penelope is a special needs bulldog who's about 9 months old. She was paralyzed by a vicious vascular virus but has made a massive comeback.
She still needs to wear diapers and forgets to use her backlegs sometimes but she's a sweetheart, playful and we knew she'd benefit greatly from my patch of grass and time to run run scoot run around. So we forgo the $5 Bloody Mary's, make our own, I don't have to change out of my running clothes and there's a puppy coming? In. I based my Bloody Mary recipe on Smitten Kitchen's only a little heavier on the heat/hooch.
Not being a total amateur and having just had a magical brunch the day before, I was also prepared to provide lunch for our Alpha Kings and hoochjuice. I went a little classier than the term "hoochjuice" (which I'm pretty sure I made up/is redundant) with Roasted Shrimp and Arugula salad with avocado and a lemon vinaigrette. We also reprised the baked eggs because I already had everything chopped and they are so easy and delicious and perfect and haven't you made them yet? As spring-->summer lunches go, I'll stand by this one. It was delicious and just filling enough.
Honey wasn't even scared by Pen after awhile. Her boyfriends were but Pen was pretty oblivious. I mean look at her....she sits like a person.
It was another great day in the garden. And my nap afterward was at least as good. Fini :)