Monday, February 28, 2011

Craig Williams, DDS

Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery

Sometimes you meet people and you just know. You just know this person is a really really good person. Down to their core! That is what I knew when I was lucky enough to meet Dr Craig Williams. We met when I was working for DirectBuy and became fast friends. Dr Williams is one of those "salt of the earth" people everyone talks about. I helped he and his wife while they were in the Club and always looked forward to our conversations.

My respect for him surpassed all expectations last year when we were told our five year old had to have his two front teeth removed. Immediately I called Dr Williams who got us in right away and called me back, himself! When we did go in for the procedure, he was so caring, considerate, and thoughtful. My five year old loved him and in the end, Dr Williams elected not to pull the teeth. It was his thorough evaluation, caring demeanor, and genuine concern that propelled me to feature his practice on my blog. Very few people care like Dr Williams cares. He is conservative and having been practicing for a very long time, knows what he is doing.

For you Dallas friends looking for an Oral surgeon, this is your man. You would be lucky to have him take care of you or your family. Just like I am lucky to call him my friend.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Should've been Italian

(Sung to the tune of Should've Been A Cowboy)

It's Sunday. It's 6:22am and I am already cooking which means it is going to be a FABULOUS day!!

You remember when we talked about my ethnic identity confusion? Well, back to that. I grew up with one of the BEST spaghetti sauces. My mom, Mimi, is a standout cook and has an Italian (jealous) brother-in-law who is astoundingly divine in the kitchen. Inspired by his cooking here is my mother's spaghetti sauce which takes all day but eats all week. So many recipes follow this sauce, you Happy Housewives will have it easy-peasy with menu planning the week after you make this.

Conjure up your best Godfather energy and ciao bella, you're an Italian Mama!

Mimi's Spaghetti Sauce

  • 1 package Beef Short Ribs
  • 2 packages Beef Neck Bones
  • 3 large cans Crushed Tomatoes
  • 3 large cans Tomato Puree
  • 3 large cans, 1 small can Tomato Paste
  • 1 15oz Tomato Sauce
  • 5 cloves Garlic
  • Olive Oil
  • Dried Basil
  • Salt

In a large stock pot with a good thick bottom, saute crushed garlic in small amount olive oil. Add meat and tomatoes. Add salt and dried basil to taste. Continue to add spices and stir all day on low. Make sure you stir and the heat is not too high as to not scald bottom of batch. When sauce is ready, discard neck bones and slice short rib meat for serving with pasta. The meat is so amazingly tender and full of flavor you won't even believe it!! Serve with your favorite pasta!

So, now you have the beginnings of a wonderful week of Italian food at your house. Friends and family of all ages will delight in your wonderful Sunday Gravy! And just wait to see what you can do with the leftovers....

Thursday, February 24, 2011

(No) Love & (All) War in Texas
Plano, Texas

You go in. You are skeptical. But, the friends meeting you have the utmost confidence in their dining choice for the evening. And then, it all begins to unravel.

First, the seemingly friendly waitress is impossible to find. Momentary relapse of glimmering hope when yummy appetizer arrives. Back to the disarray that is quickly becoming the tone of evening. Second, enough time passes that we begin to decorate our table for Christmas 2011. Third, owner/general manager arrives of his own accord to "introduce" himself and deliver our entrees partnered with our salads. Lovely. Fourth, steak cooked incorrectly, could have predicted that one.

I could go on and number all of the evenings' incidents but you have other things to do. Let's just say the food was marginal, the waitress would never come back to take drink orders, the owner/general manager who seemed so concerned initially had to be asked over again at the end of our meal and we had to ask for him four times. He was enjoying his own beverage in the bar. Awesome. When we did nicely explain that the time was the biggest concern of the evening, the only thing he offered was a free round. Not enough friend. Then he proceeded to take twenty measly dollars off of our $150 bill. Yikes sir, you aren't going to make it, let's just get this out there.

In conclusion, stay away from Love & War in Texas. Unless you like slow service, sub par food, and weird surroundings. In that case, I can't help you.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

II Brothers Grill

Preston & Frankford Location

I love eating local. I love eating period. Usually those who love to cook, love to eat. So this all makes sense here. We ate at II Brothers yesterday for lunch. It is so close to home and Mr G had eaten at the original Frisco location and said it was tasty so I took my Mom and her manfriend there for lunch with my 17 month old.

Located on the Northwest corner of Preston and Frankford, the atmosphere is somewhat sportsbar-ish but a little nicer. Not overcrowded with tables, it actually feels a bit warehouse like. The service was OUTSTANDING and while there weren't a million staff members, they made you feel like everyone was keeping an eye on you. Super kid friendly without being ChickFilA, and a great menu. Not just burgers! I started with the wedge salad which was literally half the head of iceberg! They brought out the grilled cheese right away for my son and it was on Texas toast, oozing yummy cheeziness with piping hot homemade fries. I enjoyed the grilled tilapia, huge portion, and my guests had a cheeseburger and one the tilapia as well. They make their own chips which seemed to be a hit.

Not only was everyone friendly but our server, who was new, was wrong about what was on tap so gave us one of our beers for free! I noticed their specials include kids eating FREE on Mondays and on Sundays, half price bottles of wine! Nice! Go on over to II Brothers, it's close, it's local, and it's delish. When you can't finish the large portions they serve, they will wrap it up for you to go with a smile!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Nordstrom Spa Heaven

Spa Nordstrom
Galleria Dallas

Right before Christmas, Mr G surprised me with an ENTIRE day at Spa Nordstrom! Not only did he plan it all himself, he took care of our one year old all day, took and pickup our kindergartner from school, and left me to be spoiled in the lap of luxury! I had to share with you Housewives all of the fabulousness that was bestowed upon me that day!

The day began with a body scrub, body wrap, massage, yummy lunch, facial, and the grand finale was the best mani and pedicure EVER. I was lucky enough to have three different technicians work on me that day and they were all wonderful. So, if you are looking for a splurge gift for a loved one or possibly yourself, look no further than Spa Nordstrom at the Galleria! Their product line is impressive and their staff is friendly, knowledgeable, and top notch at what they do. Make your husband a Happy Husband and you too could end up at Spa Nordstrom for a day of loveliness.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Grandma Zs Meatloaf

Maybe you grew up in a world where meatloaf night was scary. The kind of scary where what your mother put on your plate resembled nothing you'd ever seen before and the smell went right along with that description. Meatloaf to you may mark sacred trips to Furr's or Luby's where you ate your way through it to get to the "select your own dessert" category. But if you grew up in my family, meatloaf means wonderful, delicious, comfort food served piping hot with ketchup and cold the next day for lunch. FANTASTIC!!!

My Grandma Z is, or was since she is cooking very little these days, always making something wonderful. While she worked hard to fill our tummies, she was filling our hearts and souls in turn with love, goodness, and family time. A treasure, an icon, a hero to all who are blessed to know her. Her recipes will be one of MANY legacies she leaves behind when she becomes one of God's angels with real wings which the rest of us have know she has been hiding her entire life. I never anticipated so much emotion with a meatloaf post. Give me a moment...

Anywho, I am passing one of what I consider to be, an essential family recipe from my family to yours. It's hearty, easy to make, and when thrown with some mashed potatoes and green beans, a real family meal! Enjoy, and know you're eating all of the love Grandma Z has for you.

Grandma Zs Meatloaf

  • 2 lbs hamburger (you can substitute ground turkey if you like)
  • 1 package dry onion soup mix
  • 2 eggs
  • garlic salt & pepper
  • 1 cup oatmeal
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup (reserve 1/2 the can for top of meatloaf)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter the heck out of your loaf pan or use the fabulous cooking spray mentioned last week.

Mix all ingredients (works best if you just get in there and mix things up with your hands), saving half of the soup, and place in the loaf pan. Spread remaining soup over top. Bake 90 minutes. *If you have a convection oven, bake at 325 degrees for 55 minutes instead.*