31 July 2011

Can I Get That Truck With a Side of DZANG BOY

Me thinks that looks like a food truck. Well me, you are correct. It is a food truck. One of many that I would experience along with friends at the Fort Lauderdale Food Truck Extravaganza last Wednesday night! The trucks! The food! The joy! Caitlin and I trucked our booties down to the plaza to meet up with some friends and get fat on goodness cooked in confined spaces of happiness.Mel was there, sans husband (but with her son...so we got a 2/3 family showing). She stands in front of The Good Stuff truck, which was mostly a fusion approach to Venezuelan Arepas.Kim and Bubba also made it, always psyched to get their grub on.The Fish Box had a truck. The Fish Box is apparently some extremely popular restaurant in Miami that serves seafood and has a truck for events such as this. It might have been the only official restaurant truck there. I think there were probably about 20 trucks in total with a surprisingly diverse food base.For example - Dr Pepper braised brisket??? Hola crabbits!Caitlin got fish tacos, which she was cravin' something FIERCE. They were extremely tasty and to her liking. One thing we didn't like was our very long wait times at these trucks. I can't entirely blame it on crowds, though it was a full house that night. I was just surprised how unready many of the trucks were for the lines that formed at their windows. If this were a lunch situation, I'd have been pissed.I went to Ms. Cheezious and had me a blue cheese, bacon and green onion grilled cheese sandwich on sour dough bread. MAMA CITA I LOVED IT! I basically almost started crying when I tasted the cheese, bacon and green onions all in one bite. Heaven would have trouble producing a better tasting sandwich.I also got an Indian Curry Arepa, which was pretty good but a poor choice on a 95 degree, 99% humidity evening. It was hot and hefty, and just not as appetizing given the circumstances. On a cold Chicago day I would have slurped that sucka up.Mel, on the other hand, was wise and made it to the shaved ice truck for a Tiger's Blood shaved ice before the crazy crowds appeared. Honestly, that was all anyone needed that day. Great event, and I love that the world of food trucking is blowing up across this great nation.

27 July 2011

Just Loungin'

Time for a Max update. This blog needs those from time to time because I usually focus on me, me and more me. But honestly, the KID is the greatest thing on earth and more time should be devoted to his adoration.

Lately this kid has completely embraced the lifestyle of living in South Florida and spends most of the day just kickin' it, loungin' cold maxin' and relaxin', takin' it easy style. Here is some photographic evidence.Any time he can find a curb or short bench, he has to take a sit. Here we are just chillin on the curb by some "boonyas".
Usually people go to Costco to buy mass quantities of food product and sundries. Max, on the other hand, goes to take a rest from his normal daily activities. Recently he found this gigantic bear and decided it would become his permanent bean bag - giving it kisses and hugs.Food time - one leg up at the dinner table. While it appears that he has no manners, this kid really does. He now says "please" when he wants something and "thank you" when you give it to him. He also says "scuse me" when passing and "help" when he needs something instead of getting upset. Amazing.He loves to spend time in his wagon getting pulled around, preferably in a water park where he can cool off from the heat.Food time is a time to not do much eating, but a lot of ticking us off. Okay, maybe not so much, but he really doesn't eat. This was Caitlin's recent attempt to get him to try, to EAT, anything. Bird shaped pancakes with peanut butter, chicken nuggets, pudding, yogurt, peas and corn, ANYTHING!Finally, walking. While Max is hardcore walkin' all day, sometimes he just needs to take a break and rest of my shoulders. Don't call him lazy - call him lucky.

The kid is blowing our minds these days with cuteness.

25 July 2011

Taco Truck to Trump All Taco Trucks

If this looks like a food truck - that's cause it is dude. My boy Alex from Mexico purchased this bad boy for what is the most insanely cheap price I have ever heard. Then he worked his butt of and turned it into the most bad crazy mother of a taco truck that this world may ever see. Look inside this thing. Are you blown away by all the chrome like I was blown away? Walking in here was like walking in the kitchen of a five star restaurant. I began to imagine the things he'd be making in here, and I started to salivate so much I had to leave the truck so I wouldn't salivate all over the floor.Steaks are going to get their butts cooked on this thing. Its a mean, green, taco machine. I can't wait until this bad-boy hits the streets.But fortunately for me and a few other guests, we didn't have to wait to sample some of the goodness. Alex invited us over because he wanted some feedback on his veggies and fish tacos. There was no question that his asado, al pastor and other meat tacos would be off the hook, but he hadn't dabbled to much in veggies. He had prepared his delicious salsas that would be available at his truck. Its one of the many secrets to his skills. I LOVE his and Leslie's salsas.
Chef in action. He'll be cooking out of the truck soon, but for now he was just working on recipes. One thing that I loved about Alex's tacos were some of the seasoned taco shells he used. It blew my socks off.Caitlin waited anxiously. This was a night dedicated to veggie tacos - so in a way it was a night dedicated to her dreams.Alex not only has cooking chops - but also baby making chops. He just had a daughter who waited patiently as well for food along with her best buddy Colette.Here the master chef teaches us how to put together the best shrimp taco that man has ever tasted. I will tell you now - no shrimp taco is as good as Alex's. You know what else he does better than anyone else? White onions. I nearly ate a plain onion on its own.
I think Alex's taco truck is going to be mad successful. He's a smart dude with a great business plan and cooking chops to boot. Seriously - a force to be reckoned with in the food truck industry of South Florida - and possibly the world. Thanks for an amazing night dude!
More to come on his truck once it launches.

21 July 2011

Secret Shame?

So a while back I got a great idea. I should start a new blog about my thoughts on the mysterious world that is the public bathroom. I had told Caitlin for years that every time I go to the bathroom, I want to blog about something I observed there. Crazy crap happens in the bathroom that really doesn't get talked about. There are different etiquette rules and people completely change their behavior. Caitlin wasn't super psyched about me putting that stuff on our family blog, so I figured I'd have to start a new one.
BUT, upon searching the internet, turns out there is already one out there and it has only been going for a month or so! Grr! At first I was disappointed, but then I started reading and found that it was taking my idea to a whole new level and included multiple writers and different viewpoints (they even have a woman!). I started laughing at about everything I read. Yes, my secret shame is that I'm hooked into reading a blog about poo. But don't blame me, this stuff is hilarious! So I added them to our side bar and read with regularity.
The blog is He Shat, She Shat (click for link). I think my favorite post is the one where the author (Doogan Howser MD) tries to figure out why people like the smell of their own farts and not others and captures that thought in a ven diagram. Genius! Read it here!

15 July 2011

Secret Pride

Who doesn't like to see their friends succeed? I certainly do. A close friend of mine, Jeffrey Butler, has been working on a dream for many years now. His dream? To create a sock that is founded in both style and unbelievable comfort. When he began sharing with me his plans many years ago, I thought it was a great idea but knew it would take a lot of work. So I was delighted when I saw this posted on his blog a few days ago - Chuck Butler 8768578:And its on! I am extremely pleased with what he has produced. I love that these socks are woven with American history and pride, from the inspiration from his grandfather and WWII veteran to the slingshots and custom made American flags.
I look forward to getting me some, though don't expect them to cost the same as some Gap socks. Luxury socks come with luxury prices.

14 July 2011

The Great Outdoors

Finally after 2 1/2 weeks of not seeing da kid, I was reunited with Max in Boise. I flew in late so the next morning I woke up to Caitlin bringing him in the room. He copped me a cheesy smile and then buried his head in Caitlin's shoulder. I was afraid he was mad at me and would punish me for a while, but then he lifted his head and reached out for me and that was that.

We spent two lovely days with Pam, Dave and Mike in Boise so they could enjoy some Max time. Friday afternoon we packed up and headed up the mountains near Stanley to go camping for Caitlin's family reunion.

I don't have many pictures (you remember my camera is dead), but I got some from Judes and Carley. We had S'mores, talked, reunited, played by the lake, etc. Kristin and kids were there so Max was in heaven with his cousins.

Grandma and Grandpa Jones...in their nineties and still camping. Incredible. We had a big fire program with the 69 family members in attendance.

Now I was told that Caitlin's family does sing, dance or play pretend...but some of those rules were broken when camping. Caitlin and I sang Party in the USA for everyone and I scored some serious man points with her East Idaho male relatives...or not.

On Sunday we drove from Stanley to SLC for a very short visit. I don't have pictures, but we had a party at my cousin Wendy's house with most of the Mulcock side. Finally some of my Utah relatives got to meet Max and they loved him.

We stayed at the Little America With The parents and had a grand old time, including pool party with Carley and kids and Cafe Rio.

Abigale and Lydia are basically the funnest to play with. It was great to be in Utah. I had lunch with relatives, with Mikey and stopped in for a late night visit at Craigy and Kristin's house. I love visiting Utah, even though it has only been about 5 total days in the last 5 years.

From their we drove up to Caitlin's family cabin/house in Victor, Idaho. It is about 20 minutes from Jackson Hole, 30 from Grand Targhee, and a little over an hour to Yellowstone. basically an amazing location.

The kids were all together and so were the grand kids. Max could not have been happier for 5 days straight. He played with the boys Will and Ryan and Ben

Uncle Jeff got to know his new nephew who was cute as a button.

I had to work during the day, but everyone else went on a hike one day to explore the great outdoors.

Ben and Abigale...these two were inseparable during the trip.

Lydia...blowing our socks off with cuteness.

Sisters and their little ones...all grown up.

We also did some bike rides to the town of Victor. A few chains came undone and there were some spills, and someone may have said, "this is the worst bike ride ever!" but it still was awesome.

Downtown we got burgers and sandwiches in the park. I am ready to claim that this burger place had the best bacon I have ever had.

Back home tickling and playing with kids happened almost non stop.

On the 2nd we went to a big party in Driggs because the Winmills wanted to see Glen Beck so bad! Okay, maybe we skipped the Beck and just enjoyed the toys and games and food. I got Pronto Pups...an Idaho staple!

The kids played lots of cool games and rocked the blow up slides. This is where Max discovered an extreme love of slides. We later road large water slides in Jackson and Max kept screaming "again!"

More water fun back home.

One of my favorite moments of the trip was playing duck duck goose with the kids. Max absolutely loved this game and instantly caught on the spirit of the game. He feeds off other people's energy and was ecstatic to see kids running and screaming from each other.

We watched fireworks in Driggs from the car and the kids dug it. The girls cuddled.

While the boys played it cool.

We also went up to Jenny's Lake at the base of the Tetons. We took a boat across the lake because somehow we figured the kids weren't down for the 2 1/2 mile hike.


Super buddies Ben and jeff.

Papa and Abigale in da house!

The Tetons are arguably the most striking mountain range in the United States and I always enjoy hiking around them.

Completely amazing.

We hiked up to a waterfall with the kids and it was great. A beautiful day and all the kids really manned up to take it on.

And it was worth it when we got there...the waterfall was rushing at record speeds and quantity.

The fam. Love us, respect us.

A great view from the cliffs.

On the actual 4th we went to a parade in victor and in classic west coast form the floats were throwing out candy. Candy equals America.

The grandchildren except Baby Ryan.

We spent the morning in the park playing on the toys.

And playing frisbee.

Later Kristin put on an awesome scavenger hunt for the kids with little toys at the end.

Discovering the next clue!

Then we celebrated Kristin and Jeff's upcoming birthdays with none other than the Mulcock classic SURPRISE BALLS! They were filled with tender notes and memories from the family and many tears were shed.

Plus the kids enjoyed the energy of unravelling the balls.

Especially Ben...

Closing out the vacation with tender grandparent pictures. After 700 pictures, we finally get one with all the girls smiling.

Less luck with the boys thanks to Max. Ever since we got back he has been very attached to mom and dad and if he can see us he doesn't want to go to anyone else. I hope leaving him for a week hasn't done too much damage...he hasn't been quite the same. A little more needy, a little more demanding, a little more fussy. But maybe that is cause he is just getting closer to two years old.

Either way, we had an amazing trip and thanks everyone for the killer times all over Idaho and Utah!