2017-10-08 Five Guys Burgers and Fries.. 2.5

How many guys does it take to make an above average cheeseburger? More than Five Guys apparently. 😛

Of all the burger joints in all the world, how did THIS one become a national chain?

For starters, the atmosphere is “meh” at best, very fast-food-ish which I guess might be what they were going for considering you order at the counter. They get a plus in my book for the peanuts, but it seems really odd and not necessary unless they are expecting people are so starved when they arrive and have to wait in a long line (which we did not thank goodness).

The menu was also meh.. it’s a burger joint, so that’s their main thing but very one-trick-pony in that you order a single or a double and then choose any toppings you want. This philosophy is OK for people who eat a lot and consume a lot of toppings, however, me and my people don’t so having to pay for someone else’s toppings with that outrageous price point was incredibly off-putting.

Case in point.. Z gets a single hamburger, plain (YES I said PLAIN??!) and we pay just as much for that (5+ bucks) as my cheeseburger with onions and pickles and peppers and tomato and mustard and cheese. Just wrong. Same story for C only a touch worse because he did not even get a burger, he ordered a hot dog. What is wrong with my children?!

Anyway, for that price I would expect a really great cheeseburger because that’s the caliber of place this is. It’s a step above fast food and a step below an average dine-in, serve you at the table restaurant. Sadly, the burger fell short of average.

The bun was OK, there was not enough cheese (IMO), and nothing so special about the seasonings or the toppings. I’m writing this 24 hours past my experience and I can’t think of a damn thing noteworthy to say about it. Hence the below average rating.

I’m not quite done with my rant about the price though. The entire meal, which consisted of two “small” burgers, a small fry, two drinks and a hot dog came to 30 dollars. WHAT???!!! How in the Fuck did that happen? I’ve never in my life spent 30 bucks at a fast food place for me and my kids before and quite literally don’t even spend that much when we go to a restaurant normally. I could have had three complete burger meals at Red Robin for that price which would have all included bottomless fries.

Oh, and speaking of the fries, they are terrible. Overly seasoned and not crispy enough at all. I originally wanted to score this a 2.75 but now that I’ve remembered everything, I am going to go with a 2.5.

This is an over-rated franchise,
With prices that make me agonize
Burgers that won’t win any prize
And just down-right terrible Fries.
I’ve given this place one to many tries.
Time to say never again.. to Five Guys.

Never Again!
~Miss SugarCookie

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2017-09-24 Sunday Status Update

Day 5 of being ill, slept like shit last night because of congestion and my throat and cough are worse now. What the hell.

As a result, my stats are taking a serious dive:

Fitbit Steps.. Today – 6K so far.
7 Day Average – Just over 12K (above my official daily goal but below what my new goal has been 15K). 28 day average, about the same. Time to step up my game. 😛

Jazzercise .. Only two classes this week, though I also did one yoga/pilates class and one “group strike” class.

Sleep.. Back down to 6 hours a night. Maybe the E2 is messing with that because it does not seem to record the naps. I’m still not really trying to do the E2 until I feel better (though I’m still only getting like 5 hours the last couple of nights and no naps).

Eating.. I’ve been eating better overall, but have not been able to stay off caffeine or the drink (party last night at my house). I think the small changes are good. I’ve minimized gluten and dairy and so perhaps not going off things completely, but just making better choices overall.

Work.. Still Unemployed. Living the dream one day at a time. 😃

Relationship Status.. Unofficially dating someone?! I hosted a party at my house last night for Jeff and Steph and told him about it and he showed up. He was actually the first one here and the last one gone. Sort of unexpected and I was pleasantly surprised, and also mildly anxious as my ex-husband was also in attendance (being friends with Jeff and Steph too). Yowza. Does this mean we are dating? I’m not one to like putting labels on things, but I’d kind of like to know what to say the status is.

At the present moment I am drinking a concoction consisting of hot water, apple cider vinegar, honey, lemon, ginger, and cinnamon. I googled natural sore throat remedies and then threw everything I had on hand in the kitchen into the same cup. It’s actually quite good. Not sure if it will help, but worth a shot and nice to try and do something.

Feels like it’s time for a nap again now, I’m just exhausted.
Looking for the Corner,
~Miss SugarCooking

2017-09-21 Bouncing Back

The entire day yesterday was a challenge. Everything from going through our daily routine to trying to get some exercise despite feeling like the gum on the bottom of someone’s shoe. I did manage to find enough energy last night to mow the front yard and stayed up until just past 10 helping Z study Spanish vocabulary. I was ready to go to sleep and my voyage into dreamland was less like drifting and more like crashing.

When my alarm went off at 3AM which is my wake up time according to the new sleep cycle I am trying I thought about it for about a minute and decided that if my body is fighting off something wicked, then it needs sleep to be able to do that successfully. I rolled over and went back to sleep and woke up again at 6:30AM, which is more around my normal time. In hindsight it was a good decision and I’m not going to try to transition to the E2 until I feel like I am well again.

I still don’t know what was wrong, but I feel better today. Perhaps some sneaky virus affecting my entire system. Perhaps just the net result of overdoing..well.. lots of things. Strange that I could be overdoing anything when I am not working and have loads of extra time to do everything. But whatever.

Today I’ve been more productive and have been in better spirits too. My mom came over briefly which is a rare occurrence. She brought me some tomatoes from her garden. I still have more popping, but will take any given to me as I’m really trying to can and preserve as much as possible to use throughout the year. So far I’ve made batches of chili, pasta sauce, and loads and loads of salsa. I’ve also frozen the extra blanched tomatoes that can be used for anything once thawed.

It’s unseasonably hot out this week with temps in the 90s so it hardly feels like fall and the end of the growing season right around the corner. Still, my cucumber and zucchini have completely died away already. I’m not really sad about it, I’m completely sick of cucumber, and the zucchini is something I am still learning how to cook so that I like the taste. I did some roasting but it still seemed quite bland. I think I let the veg get too big and they were not very good. A lesson for next year if I decide to plant them again.

After dinner tonight I am headed over to my friend Amy’s house to give her a wedding shower gift. I’m super excited for her to be getting married and everything in her life seems to be going fantastically. It’s nice to have people in my life I can look to for positive examples. I always enjoy catching up with her and am really looking forward to the wedding. Even more so now that I have a date!!

I’ve got to run now as the oven timer is telling me it’s time to turn the chicken. It’s good to be getting back to my normal self even if I was only really out of it for one day.

Like a Rubber Ball,
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-09-17 Austin: The P.Terry’s Cheeseburger.. 3

Saturday morning we went to the soccer fields to watch Rebecca’s daughter play her very first soccer game ever. It was hot, and muggy, and the sun felt like it was burning our skin. And that was before it was even 11AM. When it was over, we decided to grab a quick bite to eat and the choice was a burger place I had never been to before.. how perfect.

P. Terry’s is apparently a local Austin chain and I’m not sure if it extends anywhere else outside the city limits. We did the drive through so I have no comment on the restaurant itself, but from the looks of it, I would have put it on par with a regular fast-food burger chain. I was pleasantly surprised that it exceeded my expectations.

I had a regular single cheeseburger which normally comes with lettuce, tomato, and special sauce but I elected to skip the lettuce. I was assured that the sauce was good, so I was ok sticking with that. I also added pickles.

When we arrived home, I dig right in and it was gone in about three minutes. I was apparently hungry. So hungry that I hardly took the time to savor it and really give a lot of thought to it, but I would not have devoured it so fast if it was not good.

Rebecca tells me that all the ingredients are fresh and that they cook your food when you order which is rare for a fast food place. If I was comparing it to other “drive-through” places, I would probably rate it higher, but my rating scale is all cheeseburger experiences from a wide variety of places ranging from basic to high-end. With that in mind, I’m giving it a 3. I concur with my friend, the special sauce was really good.

If I lived here, I would go back, but when I compare this cheeseburger to my home town “Runza” Cheeseburger, it was not as good. One of these days I’m going to have to pay Runza a visit again just so I can write about it. Hmmm.. maybe one day this week.

Enjoying Life, One Cheeseburger at a Time,
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-09-17 Austin Day 4: Sunday Wake Up

I woke up at 6AM at the conclusion of a dream I was having about a situation of injustice surrounding a child who did not have a voice of their own to defend what was happening to them. I had been trying tirelessly for hours to plead with the people around him or her to open their eyes and see the truth and to change something about what was happening.

As with most dreams, it was all very vague. Some child, some people, some situation, but no specifics for me to latch onto. It was just a strong frustrating feeling inside that I could lobby and lobby and just be dismissed by the powers that be. In the end, I conceded. I looked sympathetically at the child and allowed my heart to trust that it would all be OK and to let go of my need to fix whatever it was. The emotion I had was one of peace and also relief.

That kind of faith is very hard to come by, but when you achieve it, it can be very powerful. This was just a dream, but the emotions are real and the fact that when I woke it lingered long enough in my brain for me to feel the significance of it must mean something. I can take it for what it was or I can try and think of a deeper meaning as it applies to my life. Either way, it’s already fading away and will be lost in the commotion of the waking world as I rise and begin my day.

Yesterday was another full and fulfilling day indeed. Last night myself and Rebecca and one of her good friends took an Uber to a winery that is next door to an italian restaurant and had a lovely evening. I think the name of the winery was Duchman and I’ve been there once before with Jeremy and Rebecca.

We did a wine tasting first, which is about the right amount of wine for me, and just talked about whatever topics came up. Some were stories of the past and some were things that are happening right now in our lives. This is probably the third or fourth time I’ve chatted with her friend so between the three of us, it was very easy.

After the tasting, we all ordered a glass of our favorite and sat outside on picnic tables as the sun went down. It was a beautiful evening. Not too hot and there was a cool breeze and something about looking out across a field of grapes from under the shade of a big gnarly tree somehow made me feel like I was in Italy even though I have never been. I would like to go someday.

From there we went inside the restaurant and continued our conversations and proceeded to have the best meal. I had three options in mind for my entire and the waiter was not wrong about the choice he helped me settle on. I had the pork chop with the roasted Brussels sprouts and it was so delicious. If I was rating it the way I always rate my cheeseburgers, it would be 4.5, about as high as they get. At times like those, my only regret is that I can’t eat more to enjoy more. I kind of feel that way about my trips here sometimes. They are so short and sweet. I have to enjoy every minute because I know it goes fast.

After dinner we got an Uber back home and I’m not ashamed to be with a crew of ladies that are done with a Saturday evening out by 9. We did sit around the kitchen island talking a bit longer, but I was probably in bed by 10:30. The evening was good, the day was good, and this whole trip has been good.

Today is Sunday and later this afternoon I am traveling back home. It’s been shorter than usual trip but satisfying in so many ways. I may have one more Austin post in me yet, but for now, I’m just going to try and enjoy the time I have left.

Just a Few Bites Left,
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-09-10 Sunday Status Update

I have not done actual stats in a while and since things are taking a turn for the better, it’s a good time for it.

How does this go again?

Exercise…
Step Count: 13K today
Highest Day This Week: 24,118
Lowest Day This Week: 1926 😛

Seven Day Average: 15,595
28 Day Average: 17,693 Maybe I am not doing as good as I thought this week but last Monday <2K probably killed it for me.

Jazzercise This Week: 5 Classes
I was also informed that at the location I frequent the most, I now have 125 classes on the year. 50 More to reach the 175 goal!!
I’m holding steady with 8 pound free weights during class.

I can do three chin-ups on my pull-up bar (touching the ground in between).

I’m also now doing a push-up challenge which is 100 pushups every day. This is a thing that started today and I got a late start on it so I am only up to 30. I can DO IT!

Sleep…
Average This Week: 7hrs 38min
I only hit my target of 8 hours twice, so still lots of room for improvement but worlds better than where I was months ago.
All of this is now also without any sleep aids.

Eating…
Making some modifications and slowly changing bad habits into good. Sugar remains my weakness but this week I cut out both coffee and alcohol to see if it would have a positive affect on my headaches and wonder of wonders, I have not had a headache all week. I’m going to keep rolling with this all this week and see what happens.

Aside from that, I’ve been making fresh juice from fruits and veggies two or three time a week with my new favorite kitten appliance. I August I splurged and got a medium quality masticating juicer (it chews through food and uses pressure to extract juice instead of a centrifugal high powered spinning mechanism). It hasn’t quite become a meal replacement yet, but I’m certain the added vitamins via the fruit and veg are doing me some good.

I’d like to gain a few more pounds of muscle and loose about 5 pounds of fat. The cardio and the diet I think are key in losing the fat, so now I have to figure out what more I can do for getting that muscle. If I hit my weight goal (as far as losing is concerned), I’ve decided to treat myself to a new FitBit.. the one that does the heart rate monitoring. Then I can take the info I got in that physiology testing at UNO and apply it to a training plan.

Dinner meals with the kids are always a challenge and this week was no exception. I can’t even count on one hand the number of times Z said “I’m not eating that”. She’s incredibly picky and not liking the fact that we can’t really afford to be spending money on meals out all the time. I have to cook at home as much as possible and there’s a very small number of things that are acceptable to her.

Relationship Status… Still single but seeing someone now and hopeful about the direction it is going. Pretty soon I’m going to start questioning the various statuses. Like what is the difference between seeing someone, and dating, and being in a relationship? It’s all blurry to me and I’ve tried to NOT think about and NOT focus on it, because it’s still too early.

What started out as stats has turned a little verbose and my attention is now required elsewhere. I’ve already made a list of the things I want to get a jump on this week. It will be a short week of productivity for me since I am going to Austin to visit my dear friend Rebecca. I need to be really organized to get a whole weeks worth of stuff done in just a few days AND fit in some quality time doing things that I love to do. It will be a challenge, but I will rise to it!

Until Tomorrow,
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-09-01 September Strategy

I am rolling into month #3 of not being employed. I’ve checked the numbers and I’m still good with regards to the financial aspect of this little experiment. I took a couple months to spend some extra special quality time with the kids and to work on “me” with the intent of not thinking or worrying about my next place of employment. I would even go so far as to say I haven’t given much thought to “what” I might want to do either. According to the original plan, I would start doing that in month #3… oh, hey, that’s here!

The first thing I have to ask myself is “how am I going to approach thinking about what’s next”? How does one decide what they are going to do when, quite frankly, there are a crap ton of options? Thinking about this logically, I’m positive I am not the first person to be going through this sort of thing so I am sure there are reference materials available.

My friend Kelly suggested going to the community college to take some assessment tests. Josh is convinced I am going to stick with Healthcare IT. I talked briefly with my new friend Simon about it and he eluded to some Venn diagram to find the common ground between the things I like to do, the things I am good at, and the things people will pay for. I’ll probably start with googling how to choose a career and see how far I get.

Hopefully by the end of this month I will have nailed that down and be ready to start on whatever the path is to get me there. I know I originally said I was only going to be off work for three months, but I did factor in that looking for a job could also take several months, depending on what it is and what I have to do to get there. This is all fine and good, but it’s not the only thing I want to accomplish in September.

A few other things on my short list include:
– Dancing Lessons
– Taking a self defense class.
– Going to visit Rebecca in Austin
– Making modifications to my eating behaviors.
– Getting my RX8 Sold

I am sure there are things I am forgetting and I did not include anything that has to do with exercise, because I think I’ve reached my peak and am just going to try and maintain here for a while. I also think if I add too much, I’ll feel bad when I don’t get it all done so I’m trying to be realistic.

Speaking of being realistic.. I’ve been working so hard all day on physical things and am just exhausted now. I can’t expect my body to do anything more today and my mind is pretty shot too so any more strategizing would likely be a wasted effort. I have more to say, but it will have to wait until tomorrow.

Check Baby One Two,
~Miss SugarCookie