Monthly Archives: January 2010

>Restaurant Review – Petra

>Monday night, Meg and I went to Petra, a Lebanese restaurant in Tampa. Meg had been telling me about how wonderful the food was, so we decided to go.

The first thing that you notice when you pull into the little shopping center is that Petra also has it’s only little grocery store. I was filled with glee. When I go to Middle Eastern markets, they always have my tea, Ahmad of London‘s Earl Grey. I LOVE this tea, but the regular grocery stores don’t sell it. The grocery store is full of delicious things that the American grocery stores don’t carry.

Petra is not exceptionally fancy, but they are really clean. There are plenty of tables and the staff is friendly. They do not have a soda fountain, but I don’t drink much soda, so I thought that was alright.

All food is made fresh, so expect to wait about twenty minutes to get your food. It’s well worth the wait. You are served pickled vegetables and pita. The vegetables were delicious. It’s a blend of peppers, cauliflower, and carrots. I was sure I would hate it, because I don’t like pickled anything, but this was amazing.

After you eat your veggies, your meal comes. Meg ordered the Kafta and I ordered a chicken kabob with a salad and hummus.

As you will notice from the photo, I received rice and hummus. The server apologized profusely, but I told her it was not necessary, because I have a speech impediment and she’s not a native speaker, so I understand that these things happen. The hummus was delicious. To be fair, I love hummus and have yet to meet any that I didn’t like. The chicken was tender, juicy, and flavorful. It is served with a cup of garlic sauce. Meg felt that it was too strong, but I thought it was perfectly complimentary.

We both left full and with to go boxes. We are definitely going back soon and I’d encourage you to try it if you have a taste for Middle Eastern food.

Petra is located at 4812 E Busch Blvd, Tampa, FL 33617.


>Weekend Update – Gasparilla Kids Parade

>This weekend seemed to be jam packed. It seemed as if we barely had time for anything. Saturday we were invited to go see the Gasparilla kid’s parade with my nephew. I knew I’d probably rather hang out at home, but I figured Max and Annie would love it. I took Sadia with me and we ended up being in Hyde Park from about 2:00pm until 8:00pm. I had Annie on my shoulders for a portion of the parade. That was pretty painful. In addition to the back and shoulder pain, we got whipped in the face and torso repeatedly with beads. Sadia’s mouth was swollen for a little bit and I felt bad about that.

Apparent Rules of the Gasparilla Kid’s Parade

  • There must be at least one Jack Sparrow on your float.
  • Hawaiian shirts count as “Pirate Gear.”
  • Disgruntled children count as pirates.
  • Sometimes, your cause is good enough to stand on it’s own and the pirate theme can suck it.
  • The boys don’t get to have all the fun. (Just ask the Bonney-Read Pirate Queens below.)
  • You can NEVER have too many pirate ships!
  • The last rule is – Have fun (but watch out for the beads!)

>8th Grade

>In the 8th grade I was terribly in love with a boy. He had no idea. We hung out and played video games. We talked. I never told him how I felt. (I’m not entirely certain he was of aware of the fact that I was a female.) Right around the time that I might have told him myself, my supposed “Best Friend Forever” told him I liked him and “asked him out” for me. I was mortified. He didn’t speak to me again until well after high school. I did not speak to the big mouthed “BFF” after that either.

I saw the “BFF” on Facebook today and all of those memories came flooding back. The anger that I still feel over her betrayal. I recognize it’s silly. He was always the wrong person for me and it never would have worked out anyway. I think I was more upset that she killed the possibility of it happening.

Think of all of the people who buy lottery tickets. They know that the odds are not in their favor, but they also know that someone has to win. My theory is that people buy lottery tickets so that they can enjoy the dream of winning. It doesn’t matter if they win. They just want to believe that it is possible.

>Weekend Update

>Friday morning dawned with big plans for the weekend and the impatience that comes with knowing you have to get through the whole work day before you can have any of it. It’s like being offered a slice of cake, but then having to walk a mile to get it. I went to work as usual. My boss is out of town and I had a list of things to accomplish. I was getting things done and looking forward to my weekend.

I sat down at my desk and was about to start a project, but my phone rang. It was my mother. I asked her how she was doing, but it was just a routine question. She replied that she was in the hospital and that her heart wasn’t pumping enough blood. I told her I would be there as soon as I could and went to speak to my employees. I tried to rally them to finish what needed to be done, though I knew that it might be difficult since I actually have to do the final invoices.

I picked up my brother and we raced to St. Petersburg to see her. When we walked into her room she was covered with oxygen tubes and EKG wires. She had bloodwork done and they planned to do more so they left the vein open. She was this strange gray color and the oxygen tube had pulled her nose slightly to the right. I’ll admit it. I was freaked out. Cam and I stayed calm. She wanted food, but the ER nurse said she couldn’t have any. The hospital decided to admit her and they actually got her in a room pretty quickly. She said she just wanted to sleep and Cameron was getting antsy, so we left and I took Cam home.

Today, they released her saying that the muscles around her heart are strained and she’s experiencing cramping. My mother says that she feels extreme pressure on her chest, but that she feels a little better now.

I found myself thinking about my mother and how awful it would be if she wasn’t around. Yes, she can be a real big pain in the butt, but I can’t tell you how glad I am that she’s here. In that hospital room, I came face to face with the reality that she won’t always be here and I don’t freaking like it.

I took Mom home today and walked her dog. I took the dog down the nature trail and realized how much I miss being surrounded by trees and water and having quiet time. Here’s a photo of the nature trails end. It’s a good place to think.

>Dating’s tough for everyone.

>funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

The dating series, obviously, is on hold. I got to a point that I realized I really wanted to think about it a little more.

Clearly, I am not an expert. I’m more of an adventurer. You try to figure things out as you go along and hope for the best. You learn to trust your instincts. Sometimes, you take a wrong turn, but eventually you get somewhere. It’s not always the place you thought you were headed, but you learn from it and it adds to your experience.

>That’ll do.

>Some days, the little things are enough.

It wasn’t fancy, but it was delicious. 


>I have a project I am working on that is seriously eating my brain right now. I start to write about things that make sense to this blog and I find myself writing random things about the project that won’t make sense to any of you.

I think most of you know I can be a very “in my own head” type of person. Sometimes, I get so far in there that I forget that the rest of you are out there. Not that I believe any of you are holding your breath waiting for my next brilliant and witty post, but I still feel obligated to the few of you who follow me to update semi regularly.

I’ll spout out something clever soon. Promise.

In the mean time, my brother reviewed a book yesterday at one of our other sites. Check it out here.

Also, my Relay for Life team is having a garage sale on January 30th. If you have any items to donate please let me know. I’ll update you on the address shortly.