Breakfast club, a very real obsession, and our brand new tradition!

Hi friends!

HAPPY FRIDAY everyone! What do you have planned for the weekend? We might possibly take a train into the city to see the tree at Rockefeller and possibly go ice skating while we are there. Our friends have been wanting to go for a while — the plan is still up in the air so we’ll see how the next 48 hours unfold! :)

We’ve been thoroughly enjoying our Christmas tree. It makes such a difference to the room and makes everything feel that much more festive. I didn’t have a tree skirt so I improvised with a white sheet. I like to tell myself that it doesn’t look terrible haha :)

We decided to start a new-to-us tradition of getting a new special ornament every year. We had actually toyed with this idea years ago when we first got married, but never ended up following through (oops) –> but this time we certainly will! I love the look of clear glass ornaments and hopefully will be able to find something lovely for our inaugural year that we’re starting this tradition. I asked my friends to recommend great Christmas stores and they suggested The Pink Sleigh — I’m excited to head over there sometime soon! Please feel free to recommend other good stores to check out!

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Aside from our brand new tradition of getting a special ornament, our other Christmas tradition is to get a new game. We LOVE game nights and over the years we have stocked up on some pretty awesome options. Dutch Blitz and Bang! are two of our favorites. We’ve also been known to enjoy a bit of Pit and Settlers of Catan too! We have no idea what our new game will be this year — if you have a favorite, especially something fun for groups, please let us know! :)

Do you ever get into this food obsession phase where you eat the same thing over and over? My current phase is salads with this absolutely incredible Blush Wine Vinaigrette. I am completely addicted to it! The bottle was brand new just a couple days ago and is already half gone. I can’t stop. I definitely want to dip EVERYTHING into it. Last night I had a taco and must confess that I seriously considered dipping it into this vinaigrette (do you think that would have been yummy or weird?)…

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Even just plain lettuce with this vinaigrette is amazing. Can’t stop won’t stop #addictionisreal

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While we’re on the subject of food, we should discuss a new breakfast spot discovery! I got to have breakfast with a couple friends yesterday before we all went off to work. we all just happened to have later starts to our workdays on that particular day, and decided to make the most of the happy coincidence by having a nice meal together!

We went to Bella’s in New Haven — it was my first time going there! It may not be the easiest to find (I definitely walked past the cafe a couple times in bewilderment because there was no sign) –> …actually there was a sign but it was very small and kinda camouflaged, so my eyes seriously did not see it. It took me a while to figure out where exactly I was supposed to go… but lemmie tell you, this little gem is exactly what I needed!

Bella’s has a very down-to-earth feel, nothing too pretentious or fancy, and it is obvious that it is a staple in the neighborhood. A lot of the patrons and staff knew each other which gave the whole experience a local, homey feel. It was pretty packed too, which was surprising given that it was mid-morning on a weekday. I hear that on weekends the line is waaaay out the door!

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I had a hankering for some hot chocolate and it did not disappoint! I ordered the “peppermint hot chocolate” and it came with a mini candy cane on top – so cute! There was a generous serving of whipped cream on top, which looked very pretty but I gave my whipped cream to one of my friends — never been a huge fan, it is like tasteless foam to me?… but I thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the hot chocolate, especially after I dunked my candy cane into it and let it melt… DELICIOUS!

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I ordered off the regular menu (they also have a holiday menu). I debated getting waffles but the eggs were calling my name. I got 2 eggs with wheat toast, maple sausage, and potatoes. I hardly ever have potatoes and sausage for breakfast at home so it’s nice to have them on the odd breakfast outing. The portion that arrived was enormous – enough for 2 meals (I saved half of it and brought it home for later). The only thing that was “missing” was preserves… it would have been nice to have some strawberry preserves to spread on the toast to add a bit of sweet contrast to the savory/saltyness. But all in all I very much enjoyed the food, and TOTALLY enjoyed the amazing company!!!

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We had such a nice time together that we decided to get breakfast every month! We’ll try different spots each time and get to catch up with each other. I’m very excited about our “Breakfast Club!” :)

I have to say, breakfast at Bella’s very much made up for the terrible breakfast sandwiches we got at Dunkin Donuts on Sunday morning. I had their sausage, egg, and cheese on a croissant and it was kinda gross. The sausage tasted like it had been sitting in a freezer and the cheese tasted artificial. :( Sorry Dunkins, but I will not be eating off your breakfast menu anytime soon. I still love your coffee and donuts (especially your GLAZED DONUTS which are my absolute fave)!

Guys. Joel spent hours leaf-blowing on Sunday… by Tuesday evening there was a big layer of new leaves out there again. He doesn’t mind yard work at all and finds it kinda funny that the trees decided to dump everything in one day. When I looked out the window this morning my eyes definitely bugged out of my head! I sure am glad he enjoys yard work! Days like this make me think how nice it was when we lived in Houston and never had to think about stuff like leaf removal (or snow removal for that matter!!).

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Speaking of snow, I heard a rumor (ok, I saw the weather forecast lol) that we might get some snow flurries over the weekend. Not sure if this will be the first “shovel-able” snow of the season, but I guess we’ll find out!

What is your favorite place to get special ornaments for your tree? Do you do your own leaf/snow removal? 

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22 thoughts on “Breakfast club, a very real obsession, and our brand new tradition!

  1. have you played ticket to ride? we love to play that game. it’s for 5 players. you have to create train paths across countries (we have the USA version). A fun card game that would be good for groups is Wackee 6. this can be played from 2-12 players. it is a simple game, but can get competitive

    1. I haven’t played ticket to ride or wackee — they sound so fun! I love the sound of “simple but competitive”! Thanks for the recommendations! I can’t wait to check them out!! 😁 I hope you have an amazing weekend!

  2. This California boy is the WORST ice skater in the world. I wish I was better at it. I always love your food pics and then I got to the salad pic and was sad, but then the breakfast pic came and you TOTALLY REDEEMED YOURSELF. :)

    1. Hahaha 😂 it’s crazy how much salad I’ve been consuming lately due to the amazingness of that vinaigrette! I’m not great at ice skating either but I can be persuaded to go every once in a while. I hope you have an awesome weekend!

    1. I’m glad I’m not the only one 😆 we are on the same wavelength! I saw these cool basket things at the store, to go at the bottom of the tree — they looked really nice, but were SUPER expensive… an old sheet is definitely the way to go lol!

      1. Totally agree! That sounds like a great plan 👍 I’ll probably do the same at some point!

  3. Hi Dawn! Love reading your posts – try the game Apples to Apples if you haven’t already … Stratego is a wonderful game too if you like planning attacks and defense! 🍎 happy Christmas 🎄 and please don’t hesitate to revisit my lotus4me.blog too! I’d love some comments…

    1. Thank you Shaari!! I appreciate your taking the time to read! Thanks also for your awesome suggestions! I have played Apples to Apples, it’s so fun!! I haven’t tried Stratego but it sounds like it would be right up my alley! I’ll definitely check it out! 😄

    1. I’m so glad you like it too! I have been putting it on salads every single day! It’s a serious obsession over here lol 😁

  4. Do you have any suggestions for good 2 player games? My husband and I rarely have people to play games with unfortunately. We play cards, checkers, Scrabble and Monopoly just the two of us. It seems like most good games are designed for a group and my family isn’t big on games and his lives out of the area.

    1. I know what you mean Tracy, so many games are designed for groups! One of Joel & my favorites to play just the 2 of us is the old classic… chess! Also, when we were kids my sister and i used to play Spit (card game) for hours just the 2 of us! Scrabble is such a good one too, as you already know, same with Battleship and Clue! (I think Clue is technically for 3+ players but we often played with just 2 lol) Have fun playing all the games, I hope you have a lovely weekend!

    1. I love that idea! Is it hard to find ornaments during non-holiday seasons? Sounds like such a cool and meaningful tradition!

  5. My favorite place to get new ornaments is from the Union Square Holiday Market! They always have such cute, funky stuff. If you end up going into the city, I highly recommend it! :)

    1. That sounds amazing! I will definitely put Union Square Holliday Market on the list of places to go! Thanks for the recommendation Rachel! I can’t wait to check it out!!

  6. First time reading your blog! My husband and I are huge board game nerds. One of our favorite party games is “The Resistance.” Its an absolute blast! I love any game where you lie to one another and try to fish out the bad guys! This one is always a hit even with people who don’t really play board games.

    1. Oooh that sounds like such a fun group game! I will look it up for sure. I’m glad we aren’t the only board game fans out there — game nights are such a blast! :) Thanks for the suggestion!!!

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