MM and I are now empty-nesters; well, at least for the next 4 days. We dropped the kids off at Grandma/Grandpa's place down in Apple Valley this afternoon. My brother from Houston is driving up with his wife and a niece for some vacation time. They're going to pick up our kids tomorrow morning, and then take off with my sister's family and drive up to Duluth. After spending the night in the port city, they're going to Lutsen and stay in a condo on Lake Superior for a few days. We'll miss them of course; but, boldly we'll carry on, enjoying the peace and quiet, and spending some quality time together.
We started our own little holiday by meeting up with some friends at the Mall of America. If you remember, a while back I won a $100 gift card to Tucci Benuch restaurant by sending in a bit to a local radio station. We'd never been to this Italian place; but, after our experience today, we'll probably go back. I had the Old World Lasagna, and it may have been the best I've ever had. I didn't pay attention to the cost of anything we ordered; we had 4 fantastic entrees and salads, plus we all split a couple of desserts, and a few sodas thrown in. When we got the bill, I laughed out loud---the total came to $97.90. I gave our waiter the gift card, and told him to keep the change. No, we did give him a good tip. I'm a good tipper. The guy did a great job.
Afterwards, we strolled around the mall. For those of you who have never been to the Mall of America, it's amazing some of the stores they have in there. Alot of the big names are there, like Macys, Sears, Nordstroms; but they have some unbelievable specialty stores as well. Many of these stores are dedicated to just one thing; for instance, they have one store that only sells socks, another sells caps, another sells just beads. The people watching is fantastic, and it's like being at the United Nations; you see just about every ethnic group in the world there. We also got a kick out of some guy we kept running across, starting in the William Sonoma store. The guy must have been in his 60's, with long, flowing white hair and white beard; and, he was dressed totally in pink---pink shirt, pink pants, and pink tennis shoes.
So, it's been a good day. Being the party animals we are, MM and I finished the night off by driving home, climbing into bed, and turning on Shrek on TBS. She's now sleeping, and I'm blogging. Sounds like the kind of night Paris Hilton would have. (if she wasn't in jail that is, hah)