I loved Coralie’s great article about Top 10 Thing’s To Know When Dining Out yesterday! Didn’t you? It answered my #1 question of, “if y’all are so full, why are there empty tables?!” I love when people do exposes of an industry that effects all of us. I like having a new, educated perspective on all things.

It is no secret that Jojo and I love dining out. We are what the kids today are calling “foodies”. We relish (get it) both high-end and low-end food… so long as it is delicious. Schmancy restaurant? Love it. Hole-in-the-wall dive? Love it. Food trucks? We’re so there. We watch Top Chef, Iron Chef, Hell’s Kitchen, No Reservations and have an impressive cookbook collection. We have gads of appliances that allow us to do all sorts of cutting-edge food techniques. We speak the pretentious food language and follow all the blogs. We’ve stalked celebrity chefs and eaten in some really great restaurants. There is just something so awesome about going out- the care, the attention, the specialness. But, let me tell you… there is something so awesome about staying IN.

If you have been following the “moving to Californiasaga that has been going on for over a month now, you will know that Josh and I are about to move into our new apartment after being houseguests at a gracious family friends home. To stay out from underfoot, Josh and I have been going out to eat a lot; like every night (and sometimes 3x on the weekend days.) I have a very distinct memory of being elbows deep in dishwater doing dishes after Josh had cooked some epic meal a few months ago thinking to myself, “if ONLY we could go out to eat every night… THAT would be the life!” It HAS been great- there have been no groceries to buy and no dishes to do. But lemme tell ya… there is just something about home-cooked meals that tastes different. I don’t know if it is the comfort of knowing the breakdown of the ingredients and the preparation of the dish, or if its using your own hand-picked ingredients, or what… but I’m missing home-cooked meals. Maybe it’s the familiarity of the dishes in the regular home-cooked menu rotation. Maybe it’s the routine. I never thought I would miss it, but I do.

I can’t wait to try all the awesome recipes that Coralie has been cranking out for the last month. I can’t wait to try my hand at new techniques I’ve been reading about or seeing on Pinterest. I can’t wait to utilize all the amazing produce for which California is famous for in my own kitchen. That day is coming… and when that day comes, I know it won’t be long until I am yearning to try all the other awesome restaurants Los Angeles and California have to offer; such is life.

Do you know what else I can’t wait to do? Wish Jojo a Happy Birthday! Today is HIS day! So, in honor of my favorite dining companion, here is a picture of him (kind of) with celebrity chef Rick Bayless!


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