I Dined Out for the Cure and Then Some

Today was the 5th Annual Dine Out for the Cure in St. Louis sponsored by Susan G. Komen St. Louis.  Being a one-year survivor of breast cancer and a lover of food, this was a no brainer for me.  The difficult part of the day was deciding just where to eat.  Alas, the belly chose Pickles in the Central West End not only for its delectable sandwich options, but because it donated 50% of its proceeds to the fight against breast cancer.

Moist, Mile-High Brownies
The Pickles Club

As we approached the deli, a line was formed outside the door.  Yes!  Thank you to ALL who joined forces in the fight today.  The menu was posted on chalkboards behind the counter, so the squirts and I salivated in anticipation of our ordering.  The wait was well worth it with sandwiches piled high with various meats and cheeses.  After taking our last bites of mile-high, moist brownies, we headed to the World Chess Hall of Fame right around the corner.

Since my squirts and I are chess addicts, we looked forward to this outing.  On the main level, an art exhibit by Bill Smith entitled Beyond the Humanities was our first stop.  The docent was kind enough to turn off the lights for us so that we could experience the full effect of his spherodendron.  From there, we had two more floors in which to explore antique chess sets.

Victorian 4-Player Chess Setl

Upon our return to the first floor with free posters of the art exhibit and chess museum in hand (or rather in MY hand), we perused the Q Boutique, voted Best Gift Shop 2012 by the Riverfront Times.  Here we found some goodies for Dad (okay, for me too) for Father’s Day including Amanda E. Doyle’s Finally, a Locally Produced Guidebook to St. Louis by and for St. Louisans Neighborhood by Neighborhood.  Looking forward to reading through her book and planning a new adventure. . .   

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Create in the Central West End

While reading the April 2013 issue of Midwest Living, I came across an article about a boutique in the Central West End where you can concoct your own scents for perfumes, shower gels, and lotions.  Excited to see a local business featured in the magazine, I decided to give it a try with my two girls.  At five and six years of age, they, too, were excited at the prospect of creating their own perfumes.  Across the river we drove to Cassie’s Fragrance Boutique and Scent Bar . . .

A slew of samples were available to sniff.

After much sampling, finally, they were sold on the “brownie” scent, and I was sold on the “almond” mixed with “french vanilla.”  We didn’t want to leave the big guy in our house out, so we opted to surprise him with the “Egyptian musk”  (yes, men’s scents are available, too).

Scents for Mixing

At work on our roll-on perfumes . . .

After hard work on our personal aromas, we had created quite the appetite.  We stepped out of Cassie’s Boutique and Scent Bar only to walk two doors down to the Sub Zero Vodka Bar on Euclid.  We chose not to pursue a vodka sampling (afraid the girls might be carded), and, instead drooled over their Signature Burger Menu.*  The girls split an order of sliders and fries while I prided myself on the healthier choice of the Fresh Pacific Salmon Burger cooked to specification complete with red onion, capers, and dill cream cheese.  Okay, I did choose the deep-fried zucchini- crisp and tender- as my side, but, hey, it still counts as a veggie.

Knowing our creative juices were still flowing, we rounded the corner and entered FroYo on Maryland.  As you can see above, our tastes ran the spectrum from sprinkles and chocolate chips atop low-fat chocolate/vanilla twist to oreos falling down the sides of low-fat cake batter.  Low-fat = eat more = full bellies.  Is my reasoning ideal, or what?  For a further creative outlet, FroYo is sponsoring a t-shirt contest.  See the link above for details if interested.

Above all else, though, I cherished the quality time I was able to spend with my squirts  while taking part in a new adventure. 

*A create-your-own burger option is also available which includes a lengthy list of unique toppings.  Yummo!