Rollbotto, Sprinkles!, Largo Central Park, Girls’ Shopping Extravaganza, BizMoms

December 3, 2012 at 7:41 pm

Warning! I’m catching up from the weekend here, so this post will go on forever.

Saturday morning I had to drive across the county early to do a car shuffle at the Mazda dealership with Chad. We were getting both cars worked on and the logistics were complicated. I was crossing my fingers that everything would go smoothly and that I would be able to make it home in time to register my relay team, 3 Moms Who Tri, for the St. Anthony’s Triathlon. I had been told that the relay division is very popular and always sells out as soon as registration opens. Luckily, I made it! We’re in!

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With that stressful situation behind me, I was able to get ready for a really fun day with my friend Ali. I picked her up around noon and we headed to the Renaissance Vinoy where we were going to be attended a cool holiday event. First though, we walked from the Vinoy to Rollbotto Sushi for lunch.

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I have been wanting to try this place forever!

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I really liked the minimalist, industrial feel of the interior. I don’t think I’ve ever been to a restaurant that had a bike rack INSIDE.

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We chose two of the signature rolls to share…

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but you can also create a custom roll with whatever you like.

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They make the sushi right in front of you.

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The sushi guys were really nice about explaining everything and offering suggestions or substitutions.

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They have a condiment bar where you can load up on soy sauce, wasabi sauce, Sriracha sauce, and sliced ginger if you like.

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We got one Shell Shock roll and one Yellow Submarine roll and we each got a seaweed salad.

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I think the seaweed salad may have been the best seaweed salad I have ever had. It was awesome. The sushi was really good too.

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After lunch we stopped into a little shop nearby called Uniquely Yours.

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This boutique is total eye candy. Everywhere you look there is something interesting to check out.

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From jewelry to clothing to gifts, they have a little bit (or a lot) of everything. I did pick up one gift for a friend while I was there.

Next we walked back down to the waterfront which was packed because Snow Fest was going on.

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It was a gorgeous day and close to 80 degrees, but people came out in droves for some shipped in “snow” and pretend ice-capades. This stuff is called “glice”:

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Soon we were back at the Vinoy…

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which was beautifully decked out for the holidays.

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The event we were attending was called Sprinkles! and it was an interactive cookie-decorating class with the pastry chef of the Vinoy.

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The event benefited the breast center at St. Anthony’s Hospital.

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It was held in the banquet room at the Vinoy that has a beautiful Chihuly chandelier.

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Ali brought her own cute apron.

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Each place was set with a box of already made cookies.

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We had mimosas while we listened to Chef explain how to create the cookies and decorate them.

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The three types of cookies he demonstrated:

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We each got a tray to work with.

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We had a great time hanging out and chatting with the ladies at our table. I love doing creative things like cookie decorating.

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We took over a dozen cookies home, including a few that were unbaked that I baked as soon as I got home. Thanks for going with me Ali! I really enjoyed the event. They are going to do it again next year, and I would highly recommend it. It was $35 for a great cause, a good time, and some yummy stuff to take home. I let the boys and Chad have a few cookies then I wrapped all of the rest up as gifts for both of my next-door neighbors. Awesome.

Sunday morning I took the boys out to Largo Central Park just for the heck of it.

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This park is about 35 minutes from my house on the other side of the county, but it has arguably the nicest park in Pinellas County.

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They renovated the playground a few years ago and it is really amazing.

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I used to take the boys there for Moms Club and other playgroups when they were little. It was packed on Sunday because I didn’t realize that it was “train day”.

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The first Sunday of every month is the day that the public can go the park to ride the mini-trains.

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These are really popular. The other weekends of the month they do mini-train birthday parties and both of my boys had their three-year-old birthday parties there.

While the boys played on the playground with strict instructions, I walked laps around the outside of the park. I had to stop often for train crossings.

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This park also has amazing holiday lights and we usually make a trip out there at night during the holidays to walk through and see the lights. It’s just a gorgeous park.

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They even have an exercise area next to the playground with all kinds of equipment.

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Every time I lapped the playground, I checked on the boys.

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In all I did five laps which was 2.2 miles. I foresee us doing this on Sunday mornings more often now since I don’t plan to make the boys go to the gym like I used to. The childcare room at my Gold’s is heavily geared towards really young kids, so I’m going to try to find other active Sunday morning activities for us to do.

Once we got home I had lunch which involved this new (to us) hummus that Chad found at Publix.

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It is really good. I had a hummus, spinach, and feta sandwich.

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Then I got all showered and ready to head to Bradenton with my girlfriends for our annual Girls’ Shopping Extravaganza at Ellenton Prime Outlets. My friend Kathy drove (thanks Kathy!) and over the Sunshine Skyway we went.

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We shopped ‘til we dropped.

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I may or may not have bought gold jeans. Okay, I did buy gold jeans.

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We had a really great day. I love these ladies. Once we had spent our limit (thank you LOFT Outlet for taking lots of my money as always) Valarie, Bobbi-Jo, and I waited on a bench while Kathy fetched the van to take us back to the retirement village.

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Actually she fetched her Suburban to take us all to Ruby Tuesdays for dinner. Thanks for that also Kathy!

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The Girls’ Shopping Extravaganza is definitely one of my favorite holiday traditions.

Last night Chad and I watched the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead. So so so good.

So that catches me up to today! This morning Chewie and I walked Mack to school.

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Breakfast was bran flakes and blueberries.

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After breakfast I wrote my “Dedicated in December Update #1” post, then got cleaned up to head to Tampa for a BizMoms meeting. My friend Adrianna was the speaker. Among the many hats she wears, she is a blogger at Military Money Chica. She also has a new online magazine in the works for military spouses. It’s launching January 2013, but you can check it at NextGen Milspouse on Facebook. She spoke about new media, which of course is a subject that I love.

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As always, children are welcome at all BizMoms meetings.

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The south Tampa chapter of BizMoms is just getting off the ground and they are a great group of ladies. If you are a mompreneur or your clients are moms or families, then you should check out BizMoms. I love connecting with these enthusiastic, motivated women. They are so welcoming and the relationships I’ve made in the past few months within the group are wonderful.

The rest of the day was spent cleaning house (mom’s coming!), finishing the Christmas decorating (!), doing laundry, and carting children around town from school to home to karate. Luckily, all I had to do for dinner was stick it in the microwave.

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While I was out with my girlfriends last night Chad made ground turkey Shepherd’s Pie for the boys. He ended up with enough ingredients to make two, so we had the second one for dinner tonight. Thanks honey!

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He makes this fairly often and it is so good.

Okay, that’s all I got. Whew. We’re off on the family evening walk.

Cya.