Two weeks ago I swore Elder L to secrecy. DO NOT TELL ANYONE IT'S MY BIRTHDAY! PERIOD!
He promised, and then this is what we walked into today. The office elders apparently have too much access to church records, but how sweet are they This are notes and letters from many of the elders and sisters in the Baton Rouge Zone. Needless to say, I have no mascara left. Then Elder L went out and brought back Frank's homemade biscuits and chocolate milk. So we partied our way through the morning, in between the fun phone calls, texts, and emails from family, friends and missionaries. I must admit, it was a great start to the day! Needless to say, it took much longer than usual to accomplish today's tasks.
Need I say how much I love it when sisters drop by? It's so nice to hug them. Sister Lindstrom & Sister Weidmann were on exchanges & on their way to help a less active sister pack for a move. But I'm super sad because Sister W returns to Temple Square next week and by the time we get home she'll be back home in Switzerland. What a delight she's been to get to know.
Sister Bailey & Sister Jewett also stopped by after calling earlier and singing Feliz Cumpleanos en Espanol. Darling girls! They were on bikes today because it's the end of the month and, not only are they low on $$$, they're also low on miles. Money isn't the only thing missionaries have to learn to budget. Both Sisters went to the Mexico City MTC. Sister Bailey has been here since April and Sister Jewett came in March. Adorable!
So after the party came this box from Bath & Body which is almost as good as the goodies inside. The family sent lots of the best hand soaps and sanitizers. Danielle suggested that I share the 15 little hand sanitizers with the sisters. Great idea!
Could the day get any better? Well, actually it did. Marc had made reservations for one of Emeril Lagasse's New Orleans restaurants--Delmonico! It's along the St. Charles streetcar line that runs through the Garden District. According to New Orleans info Delmonico is a legendary, century-old icon in the restaurant industry, serving traditional Creole food since 1895. After an extensive historic renovation, it was reopened by Emeril in 1998 and now serves a modern style Louisiana Creole cuisine.
I ordered from the "Taste of Summer" menu which included 4 courses. Good thing they were small portions. The starter was jumbo lump crab bruschetta with apple smoked bacon and parmesan cheese. Next came the soup of the day which was creamy with corn, sweet potato and jalapeno over a hush puppy. The entree was a hanger steak on saffron rice pilaf, green beans, yuca fries and citrus mojo. Wrapping it up was a warm blackberry cobbler with creole cream cheese ice cream and an oat-walnut tuille.
Marc went for the iceberg and blue salad with apple smoked bacon, grape tomatoes, celery, radish, croutons and point reyes blue cheese dressing. His entree was the aged, 20 oz. rib eye served with 3 sauces. By far the best was the bearnaise. And, of course, he had french fries. But they weren't just any fries. They were really good and crunch. They came with a lemon aioli. I wasn't a fan of the aioli.
After dinner we took a little drive through downtown New Orleans and the French Quarter. Honestly, how can anyone not love NOLA--even with it's bumpy, horribly maintained streets and city smells. It's quaint, historic, unique and lively.