Todd Family Blog

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Saturday, May 17, 2008

Two Must-Try's

Just had to let all of you Indy residents know about two great little food spots.

One is Tata's, a Cuban restaurant downtown on Market near Capitol. It opened 5 months ago, is very authentic with the owner presiding over everything, and an excellent deal. Share a cuban sandwich (the first one on the menu is the standard and very yummy) and one of the entrees (#12 was great) along with a plate of fried Yuca. Ask for some of their garlic/lime sauce on the side for dipping. Perfection.

The other spot, Delullo's, is located north of Zionsville on 32 at Joliet Rd. It's a tiny pizzaria/pasta joint owned by an Italian brother and sister, Dan and Kay Delullo. It's just a cutely decorated room with maybe six tables. They make their pizza dough and tomato sauce from scratch, the pasta comes fresh from an Italian specialty store, and their Italian cheeses hail from a company in Wisconsin, Grände. So good! Split a pizza (the classic Margherita is great), the amazing lasagna (five layers of paper-thin, fresh pasta with seasoned meat, mushrooms, their homemade tomato sauce, and just a bit of cheese to top it off) and a salad with their homemade herb-balsamic dressing. (The bruschetta looked wonderful at the next table, too.) End with tiramisu - maybe the best I've had, and we had some darn good tiramisu in San Fran. No wine, but bring your own! And expect the owners to introduce themselves. Dan stopped by our table and exclaimed, "I don't know you! Your first time in?" Gotta love that.
Afterwards, if you want to make a night of it, you aren't far from all the shops/movie theater at 31 and 146th.


Saturday, May 10, 2008

This Week in Pictures

So, it turns out I've taken a lot of pictures in the last week and a half! It's been a busy and fun one, so I thought I would let the pics and captions speak for themselves.

I do know that I don't have pictures of two things from this past week that were truly exceptional, and everyone who is reading this in Indy needs to go and enjoy them both. One is Poncho's at 71st and Michigan. Some of the best Mexican I've found, and the best guacamole I've had. (When you order it, the guy at the register yells, "Guacamole!". Then they make it to order.) Poncho's also has some of Brad's favorite, and less mainstream, parts of the cow on the menu for your burrito, as well as my favorite - Pastor (a.k.a. Adobada - think Mexican-style Gyro meat), and one of the best salsa bars I've seen. Loved it!

Also, I couldn't take any pictures at the Decorators' Showcase house, which we toured yesterday. It's such a neat idea and has been an annual Indy tradition for 47 years. One of the mansions north of downtown is volunteered by their owners to get completely redecorated, inside and out. Each room or part of the yard is then decorated by a different Indy area designer. Every room was very unique and there were some fabulous ideas in each one. I'm planning on stealing quite a few!

Here are some more highlights from the week....

A week and a half ago we went to see Ryan and Monique do a set at Birdy's. It was so fun to see them up there. (Actually, as I type this Brad is golfing with Ryan and Brad Stevens. Hope they're having fun and no clubs are bent!) I knew that Ryan has a great voice and plays guitar well, but I'd never heard Monique sing! What a beautiful voice she has! And funny enough, she called my Mom for voice lessons when she was in high school - what a small world.
(Sorry the picture is a bit dark! Feel free to click on any pic for a larger view.)

Polly and Andrew threw a spontaneous Kentucky Derby party at Amanda (a fellow Alpha Phi) and Jason Leet's lovely new home in Zionsville. Polly is from KY and is a Derby fanatic! She gets to go now and then with her family and has so many fun traditions surrounding the race. Andrew made fabulous Mint Juleps, Polly brought Derby Pie bars (yum!), and they were also armed with lyrics to "My Old Kentucky Home" and a system for picking a horse on which to wager $2. (Baby Oliver was the winner!) I was especially impressed with Andrew's knowledge of the Derby. He has obviously been well-trained.

I love this picture of Andrew and Oliver which I secretly snapped right before the Derby started.

Another favorite - Polly holding Oliver in the foreground, behind on the left, Sara holding Harrison and, on the right, Elizabeth holding Drew. Both Sara and Elizabeth are fellow Alpha Phi's. John, Sara's husband and another Butler alum, is sitting on the arm of the couch.

Oliver and Harrison having some play time!

Wichita Grand Opera Audition:
For the second time this year I travelled to Wichita, KS to sing for Wichita Grand Opera. The opera performs in the Century II theater, below, a 3,000 seat hall. It's really fun to actually audition on the stage, something that rarely happens! (Oh - and the audition went pretty well. I got to sing three arias, which almost never happens. That has to be a good thing, I figure!)

There's a cute little revitalized area in downtown Wichita called the Old Town Marketplace. I found some fun shops and had a WONDERFUL lunch at a trendy little cuban restaurant. I wonder if the entire city will be revitalized in a similar way.

All down the main drag of Wichita are a variety of statues, like this little girl playing hopscotch and a cat. Kind of random, but cute.

The view from my hotel room of the Arkasas River. There's a nice river walk and museums just down the way. Like Old Town, another nicely revitalized area.

The Broadview hotel where I've stayed on both trips. Built in 1922, it's a beautiful old hotel, and it's right across the street from the auditorium where I sing. Perfect!

I noticed this sign while eating lunch in the airport. Only one terminal at the Wichita airport, and this sign kind of says it all!

Last night's "Wellie Night":
Doug and Norm in our designated corner of The Wellington in Broad Ripple

Dinner at The Usual Suspects after drinks at the Wellington:
Miriam enjoyed gnawing on the bone from Doug's Osso Buco. Seriously.

Explaining how Grandpa Barr used to swear, "Fat makes your skin glow and your hair shine." Miriam and I have quoted that for over a decade now.

Ellen and Miriam

The fate of the bone, eventually - A doggie bag for an Doug's dog.

More dogs that would have enjoyed that bone....
Yesterday Luke, Cal and Gracie got baths and their inaugural rides in our new truck. Then I attacked them with the "Furminator" today (a heavy-duty undercoat brush). You should have seen the hair that came out of those three. Unbelievable. After all that work I had to take some pictures. They'll at least be clean and shiny for a day!
It is also a BEAUTIFUL day today after two days of rain. I even love the rain now - it's the reason everything is so very green here!

Luke is very, very tall when he jumps for his favorite ball.

Cal in his "I'm ready to chase the ball" pose.

Handsome and happy boys...

Pretty Gracie ready to chase her ball.

Vicious dog

I've titled this picture "A Flying Bacie" (Gracie's nickname, FYI)

And this one is "Gracie the Bear"

Friday, May 2, 2008

Touch of Cleveland?

Just had to share this photo Miriam sent me of a restaurant in the area by her house. I've never seen anything quite like it. Not sure if we'll ever try it, but the photo is pretty great. Note the hooded figures and the misspelling of "restaurant".

All else is going well here. Brad's taken off for the med school graduation party of a good friend in Michigan. Wish I could go, but someone has to stay with the dogs! I'll be taking my own trip Monday and Tuesday for an audition in Wichita, KS.

We had fun on Sunday seeing Oliver Martin Jones, Polly and Andrew's baby boy, being baptized at St. Luke's Methodist. He wore the most beautiful gown which all the children in their family wear for their baptisms. It was really special to be there. There was also quite the commotion since Obama "secretly" (with news trucks in tow and a grand entrance 10 minutes before the service started at one of the biggest churches in Indy - ha! - very convenient) decided to attend service at St. Luke's that day. A bit frustrating since it was difficult to begin church and I look forward to that being my special time every week. (And really, campaigning in a church? No matter what your political views that seems a bit tasteless.) Certainly will be a story for Oliver when he's older!

I'm sure Brad will have a fun entry to post from his time in Michigan. Till then, enjoy A Touch of Cleveland....
(click for a larger view)