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Thursday, September 29, 2022

a night out with the chicks

so while i'm not really much of a fan these days, i did go through a country music phase back in the early 2000s.  kinda weird, right?  anyway, that's when i became a huge fan of the dixie chicks (now known simply as "the chicks") - three badass women who write a lot of their own songs and play an assload of different instruments and have weathered some crazy ass storms, both personal and professional.  i've managed to see them live every time they're in town, but when tickets went on sale for their 2022 tour i thought for sure my streak was over.  the hub had zero interest in going, and i knew no one else who might want to come with me.

i did concoct a plan in my head that i held off on proposing to the hub until their stop at the greek theater in l.a. got a little closer.  i could buy just one ticket, make a reservation for him to visit a swanky local cigar club he'd been wanting to check out for ages, and he could drop me off for the show while he relaxed with a cigar nearby.  it sounded like a perfect plan, and when i finally pitched it he seemed a little taken aback at the idea of me going to a concert alone but didn't shoot the idea down.  

and then when the show was just a couple of days away, he broke down and said "i'm gonna go with you, it'll be fun!"  woo-hoo!  he even took over the process of buying the tickets and securing a parking pass and everything, which meant that we got to park really close to the venue and use the VIP entrance, with practically no line for the security check:

they were serving themed wine at the bars, named after the chicks' newest album.

we ended up grabbing food at one of the kiosks and sharing a table with a nice couple next to the merchandise tent.

i hadn't been to the greek theater since i went with my aunt and a friend to see whitney houston...in the year of our lord 1986.  heh.  and so i was very pleasantly surprised to note that the theater is smaller than the hollywood bowl, which meant that every seat had a great view of the stage.  and the hub had treated us to some really, really good seats.  this was our view, and that's without zooming in:

there were even cup holders at every seat, which came in really handy:

jenny lewis was the opening act.  i'd not heard of her before, but we enjoyed her set anyway.

and not too long after she finished, the chicks took the stage.  i was SO EXCITED.  look how close we were!

during this segment, they brought out a young fan plucked from the audience to roll a huge die that would determine which of these songs they played next (truth #2 won).

natalie's son slade was part of the band for this tour, and so was martie's daughter eva.

and then all too soon, it was over.  unlike the last time we saw them, we didn't have a meet & greet after the show and so this was the last we got to see of the chicks for this tour:

we made one last stop before heading home for the night - at a late-night taco stand.  yum.

yup.  that was one great date night. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

sing us a song, you're the piano man

when i met nanette oh-so-many years ago, i knew instantly that she was the kind of person i'd count as one of my friends forever.  she's cheerful, hilarious, genuinely kind and thoughtful - plus, she's half-filipina so we're probably related in some way down the line somewhere.  it's always a good time when nanette is around, and so when she invited me to join in her birthday celebration for her 45th i was happy to attend.

the invitation mentioned a "virtual piano bar," which was interesting.  i was definitely intrigued, and i had to laugh when i saw it because although i wasn't 100% sure what we were in for, it was just so very nanette - something new and creative, a fun novelty, and definitely bound to be a good time.  plus she mentioned mexican food and sweets...and you just can't go wrong with those.

lilcee and i carpooled down to the party, and of course even though it was the dead of summer it happened to be one of those rare chilly evenings.  this meant that i wasn't going to be able to bust out one of my cute little dresses but instead wore jeans for the first time in months.  oh well.

because of the recent surge in covid cases at the time, she had decided to keep the party outside in her back yard.  it was super cute and cozy back there, and we made ourselves plates of tacos and rice and grabbed a seat at the table to enjoy our food together.  she'd brought in food from local favorite tito's tacos, and i must've been really hungry because i don't have any pictures to share with you - but trust me, they were delish.

she had the tv set up outside and connected to her laptop, and when we'd gotten our fill of those tacos we rearranged our chairs and got ourselves ready for the virtual piano bar.  once justin appeared onscreen, there were lots of whispered jokes about strippers and ripping t-shirts off and schoolgirl giggling, but it was a PG-rated party and all clothing stayed in place.  heh.

he had a list of songs for us to pick from, and there were lots of 90s/2000s hits with some harry styles and elton john and beatles mixed in.  everyone took turns requesting songs, and he would play them and we would sing along and i'm going to go ahead and admit that i wasn't totally sold on it when we started, but by the end of the hour i realized that i'd been thoroughly entertained and had a great time.

we all sang the birthday song to nanette - yes, justin too - and there were cake pops for everyone.

the birthday girl with justin.  i mean, come on...does she LOOK 45?!?  no way!

it was a really fun night spent with old friends and a few new (to us) ones, and i was so glad i was able to go.

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

hanging out at tommy's

i'd come across a facebook post about luau night at dodger stadium where the giveaway was a fun hawaiian shirt.  i talked the hub into getting us tickets so that we could get the shirt for the bean, who loves crazy printed button-down shirts, and then we could go out for dinner after the game.

the shirt was actually really cute and i immediately busted it out and put it on over my dress.

one of the hub's good friends is a longtime dodgers season ticketholder, which means that he has access to tommy's bar, the semi-secret speakeasy tucked away next to the visitors' bullpen.  and he was able to score us a reservation that evening, so we headed over there as soon as we could.  the entrance was just past this display of tommy lasorda gear - not marked, of course, and we were stopped right away by the staff standing just outside the door.  they let us through after checking the list for the hub's name, and then we were in.

it's a cozy little space, with a well-stocked bar along one side with tasteful retro decor throughout and a peek at the visitor's bullpen through the window.

we took a seat at the bar and checked out the food and drink menus.

i decided to try the raspberry chavez - vodka, raspberry, egg white, lemon.  the hub went with the west side citrus, a vodka soda with fresh mint and simple syrup.

we sure do love a good charcuterie board.  and i'm pretty sure the "homemade" potato chips...weren't.  they were still good though, with the french onion dip that also likely came out of a tub.

oh, and fondue with a hot soft pretzel is always a winner with me.

i was a pretty happy camper, sitting there with my cocktail and all the snacks and my dodger hawaiian shirt on.  heh.

it wasn't your typical night out at the ball game...it was even better.  makes for a fun date night, that's for sure.  so if you get the chance to visit tommy's bar, do it!  you won't regret it.

Monday, September 26, 2022

caught in the webb again

like last year, the bean and their BFF registered for a 10-day sleepaway summer camp at the webb schools, a local boarding school.  the day before they were scheduled to check in, we squeezed in a disneyland day together.  well - more like, i took a solo day while the two of them roamed around the parks together.  

knowing that i had a LOT of time to burn it off, i scored myself a spot at the bar at lamplight lounge.  i sat there and enjoyed a leisurely lunch, munching on an order of lobster nachos and indulging in a couple of specialty cocktails.

i was entertained the whole time by the bartenders who bickered and bantered back and forth while making sure my glass was never empty.  and even when i was ready to leave, they mixed one last drink for me and poured it into a plastic to-go cup that i was allowed to take with me as i headed back out into the park.

i took advantage of the single rider lines at all of the rides that offered them - incredicoaster, goofy's sky school, webslingers, even grizzly river run.  that one isn't my favorite for riding solo, though, because the raft holds up to 8 people and joining a group or family is super awkward.  eventually i made my way across the esplanade into disneyland, where i grabbed a seat in the fantasyland theater for the new lion king-themed live show and ran into a friend along the way:

i was supposed to meet up with the kids for fireworks, but they ended up stuck in a long line for a ride through the whole show.  i caught a glimpse of the main street electrical parade by "it's a small world," where i also had a great view of the projection show that played in conjunction with the fireworks.

the next day, the bean and i packed their luggage into the car and drove over to webb, where they took the required covid test and then reunited with BFF in the room they were to share for the duration of camp.

i helped them unpack and get settled, and then we headed down to grab some lunch before saying goodbye.

let the games begin.

squeezing in all the sightseeing

this was our NYC home for a whole week: it was one of only a few hotels that i could find that offered two beds in a room rather than, say, ...