If you are not redirected automatically, follow the link to Gretchen, In-Between Viva La Italia! | Honey, I Shrunk the Gretchen!
Pages Menu
Categories Menu

Posted on Dec 28, 2010 in Dear Diary, Food | 4 comments

Viva La Italia!

Well, despite work itself not being busy at all today (something about other people enjoying their holiday and NOT returning to work right away, maybe?), as soon as I got home I feel like it’s been a whirlwind! Immediately after I got home, Daxter was being super cute (well, let’s be honest — when isn’t he?) so I had to take some practice shots with the new cam’:

After that, I hung around the house and talked camera-shop-talk with the bro, his gal, and my guy. Ben just got a new super schmancy, super exschpensive lens, so he was playing with it, and now that I have a little DSLR buddy of my own, I always want to jump in on the learning experience! There are quite a few cameras and lenses populating the Powell household these days, to say the least!

I’m trying to experiment with actually learning what the different settings and features of my fancy new camera are — aperture, ISO… it’s a lot but I’m trying to soak it in! My newest lesson is trying to put into practice what I’m learning about aperture and that sweet, sweet blurred background thing that makes photos look so pro:

I think it’s the lower the number of the aperture, the more light that is let in, and the blurrier the background is. Or… well… if I’m wrong, someone out there with far more photography experience can correct me. I’m here to learn!

The night’s big event was a bunch of my friends and I set out to surprise our friends Evan & JP with a big birthday gathering orchestrated by their loving girlfriends — dinner at Maggiano’s Little Italy!

Because there were so many of us at dinner, it was a pre-fixed, family-style meal. I didn’t get to choose what I got to eat, but since I knew I was going out to dinner at an Italian restaurant anyway, I had tried to budget my calories from earlier in the day anyway. Besides, it was a celebration! I tried to take little samplings of everything – it was a LOT of food regardless!

My first alcoholic drink in many months... a frozen peach bellini! It was yum-o. 🙂

Calamari for the table! Yum!

My appetizer plate: a piece of bruschetta, some calamari, and salad in the background.

My dinner plate: small servings of lasagna, gnocchi, chicken marsala, and salmon.

Dessert was two options: delicate, delicious tiramisu and creamy, decadent creme brulee.

I had a few little nibblings of each, obvi. 🙂 I did go back for extra bites of some stuff – I kind of gave up on actual counting calories for the meal pretty early on, admittedly. I also had a piece of bread dipped in olive oil at the very beginning — I just couldn’t resist. I was in the Italian mindset! 😛 Anyway, needless to say I was in a super-attractive food coma mode by the end of it:

But it was, of course, totally worth it for delicious food (that I will definitely be trying to work off tomorrow! Squats at my desk, anyone?) and good times with great friends. With that being said, it is officially past my bedtime, peeps. Not leaving a restaurant until 11 PM really puts a cramp in this whole beauty rest thing, huh? Sweet dreams!


  1. hehe i guess “pre-fixed” works but the term is “prix fixe” which means “fixed price” 🙂
    Nice to indulge once in awhile but if you go to the gym this week that will really help with the cruise weight 😛

  2. Your photos are awesome!

  3. Hi there! I just randomly found your blog while doing a google search to see if most people thought the rockin’ rolls at Sweetwater are “Ozzie” rolls or “Aussie” rolls. I’m going with Ozzie. 🙂 My name is also Gretchen, I also live in Northern VA and also just lost 40 lbs. WEIRD. Good luck with your diet!

    • Hahaha, that’s like the trifecta of coincidences! Congrats on your weight loss, too, Gretchen (how weird is that to type? :D) I think that it is indeed “Ozzie”, so my posts on the rolls from waaaay back when are totally wrong, I’ll fully admit!


  1. Sake to me! | Honey, I Shrunk the Gretchen! - [...] Good thing I’ve actually been bringing my lunch to work (fairly) regularly. First there was Maggiano’s, then Red Lobster……

Post a Reply

Your email address will not be published.