Monday, December 28, 2009

A Christmas Weekend in Tampa

Happy Holidays! Christmas Break started early, and on Wednesday evening a few of us went to the Forum downtown to see the Lightning take on the Flyers, was an exciting Hockey Game...with the Flyers up 2-0 in the first period, only for the Lighting to get 2 in the second period, but the Flyers came through for another 2 to win the game. After the game we met up and said hello/goodbye to some friends that were leaving Tampa for the holiday weekend.

Christmas Eve - started early making Italian sauce and a huge Italian feast for my Aunt and Uncle and a few friends - Sausage and Meatballs, Eggplant Parmesan, Four Cheese Lasagna, Broccoli with Garlic/Lemon, Garlic Bread....espresso's and zambuca out in the backyard around the fire pit..dessert of Italian pastries/cookies, and Banana's Foster, and then playing dice games till midnight, when the Cigars came out. Good Times!

Christmas Day - after opening gifts and enjoying the morning, met my Aunt and Uncle at Channelside for some Christmas Thai dinner and Thai Thani - at 330pm, not many people in the restaurant yet, but more and more were coming in as we were eating, the area was very busy with people going to the movies as well. Food and service were good, as usual, we ordered some of the Soups, rich and flavorful, Dumplings - fresh and delicious, and House Fried Rice, and another dish with Shrimp, Chicken and Pork and a very light and flavorful sauce. An excellent Christmas meal. Afterwards we walked it off along the Tampa Riverwalk, starting at Channelside, taking a look at the new Heroes Plaza and Cottanchobee Park. Then it was time to see a movie at Channelside, and Up in the Air was the consensus, great movie!! And a great Christmas Day!!

Saturday a good friend of mine in the Seminole Heights neighborhood was having a few dozen people over for a Cookies and Wine get together, everyone that showed up at to bring two dozen cookies, and at the end of the night, you were able to take home a few dozen cookies...interesting, but had alot of fun.

Sunday, went to downtown St. Pete, and tried Yummy Mama's - Russian Brunch Buffet. I never went to a Russian restaurant, this was very authentic, and had a little market next door, large bar area with live musicians. The Brunch was thoroughly explained in detail of all the variety of foods, everyone that worked there was overly friendly and Russian...Stuffed Cabbage, Chicken Kiev, Goulash, Stroganoff, Russian salads, Russian soups, Perogies...and lots of other foods such as Cheese Blintzes and Crepes, Omelet station, Carving Station, Salad Station, Seafood Station with Crab legs, Oysters and Shrimps. It was good, included Mimosas or Bloody Mary's. I'M not sure I will be running back to the Brunch Buffet, but would love to try the menu for freshly prepared meals...I thin that had there been more people dining and they were able to turn the food over more in the steam tables, the food may have been fresher.
Afterwards it was a walk around the park areas of downtown St. Pete. Sunday night, another good friend of mine had a dinner party at her Wellswood neighborhood home, about a dozen of us on the back porch, with a fire pit, and heaters on, enjoyed company and winding down of a great Holiday weekend.

Short week, and looking forward to New Years!!

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