22. Go to a New Restaurant Every 3 Months: Monty’s Blue Plate Diner

Happy Friday, everyone! How is summer treating you? Mine has been going well, and going fast! How is it the middle of July already?! I can’t believe that my dance classes start up again in six weeks…I am SO not ready for that! It’s been nice to be home in the evenings, and to spend more time with my friends and my fur babies. For me, this summer has been a lot about progress…slow progress. Progress on my yard and landscaping plans, progress on mini projects in the house, progress on losing the weight I gained after my back injury…those of you who know me well, know that I’m not the most patient person. But, I keep reminding myself that even slow progress is good, because it’s still progress.

Speaking of that, before I get into Monty’s, I wanted to update you on #19, which is to write a book. For those of you who don’t know, I decided I wanted to write a cookbook. To kick start, I’ve started a cooking blog called “Table for One.” I just posted my 20th recipe last night! In a little over three months, I’ve gained 11 blog followers, 88 Facebook followers, have started an Instagram, made a Pinterest board, and have gotten over 600 views on the blog itself! I am so happy and so proud of how far my little blog has come in such a short amount of time. I am hoping that, one day, it will be doing so well that I can make a little income off of it. If you haven’t checked it out yet, please do! I would really appreciate it! You can find the blog here and my Facebook page here. Now, Monty’s.

So, my baby sister, Kaylee, moved to Madison, Wisconsin this past January, after she got hired at Land’s End. Since January through May is a crazy time for me, I hadn’t been able to go visit her. But, once recital was over, Mal and I decided to take a weekend and drive up to see her. 


Road trip! Mal jamming to Bruno Mars, because, why not?!

We got there on Friday night and had a laid back night in. On Saturday, we got up, took some blog photos for Kaylee’s fashion blog (which you can see here), then headed to the mall for a very full and successful day of shopping.

Mal, the photographer, and Kaylee, the model

Mal, the photographer, and Kaylee, the model

...And no one was paying attention to me, so I took my own picture.

…And no one was paying attention to me, so I took my own picture.

Lunch at Potbelly's

Lunch at Potbelly’s

Mmm Teavana...

Mmm Teavana…

After our crazy day, Kaylee suggested we go to Monty’s Blue Plate Diner for dinner. I’d never heard of it, but was excited to try something new. When we got there, there was a 15 minute wait, which I didn’t think was bad at all for a Saturday night. Plus, it gave me time to take some pictures.


Dessert. Need I say more?!

Dessert. Need I say more?!

The view from the front door

The view from the front door

Some guy singing sweet tunes outside...he was really good!

Some guy singing sweet tunes outside…he was really good!


After our short wait (and some lady sitting on Mal’s skirt), we were escorted to a booth in the middle of the restaurant. Now, I’ve gotta say, I’m a sucker for old diners. I love the feel, the decor, the atmosphere…and Monty’s got an A+ in all of those areas.

IMG_1943 IMG_1944 IMG_1945

Our waiter brought us some waters and left us to look at our menus. I’ll admit, I was not impressed with him at first. But, after our initial meeting, he softened up and was actually a really nice guy. So A+ for wait staff too. I opened the menu and was immediately overwhelmed by my choices. I mean, “Meatloaf of the Gods.” Who WOULDN’T want that? A vegetarian…which is why they also have a “Meatless Loaf of the Gods.” (How much are you loving this place?!) I picked out about 12 things that I wanted, before my sisters reminded me that I had to order something I wouldn’t normally…and that something was breakfast.

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before, but I hate breakfast. Seriously. Why would I want to eat soggy oats drenched in milk? Why? Breakfast is just not as fun as lunch and dinner, or dessert. If I go out somewhere, I rarely order off the breakfast menu. But, the list says what it says, and so to the breakfast menu I went. After looking over the omelets, I decided to get the chilaquiles, because, while it sounded good, I knew I would never order that under normal circumstances. 


The food was ready in what seemed like no time at all. My plate arrived and holy shit.


Please, please, look at the top of the photo at the menu. The normal, average sized menu, next to my mammoth of a plate. I mean, what?! How do I even eat this? Where do I start? Shit.


Ok. Ok. Look at my hands. Look at that plate. There’s just too much happening.

Mal's normal sized plate. Just look at that plate!

Mal’s normal sized plate. Just look at that plate!

Kaylee...didn't get food at first. Which was fine, since mine was enough for a small family of four

Kaylee…didn’t get food at first. Which was fine, since mine was enough for a small family of four


Kaylee’s eggs. I mean, really. Is this a joke?


Ok, that’s better. But my food could still eat her food.

The moment of truth. Would my massive breakfast-dinner pass the test? It did! While appearing very intimidating, my chilaquiles were very friendly to my breakfast hating belly. Good flavor, just the right amount of spice, and, the best part, the chips toward the bottom didn’t even get soggy! Magic.


I fought the good fight, but in the end, I could not make it any further.

Everyone loved their meals! We ate until we could eat no more…then ordered a Reese’s shake. Go big or go home! So, the only thing I haven’t mentioned yet was the price. My gigantasaurus plate was $8.99. Yup. It was worth every penny. I will definitely be going back to Monty’s next time I’m in Madison. Although my chilaquiles were fantastic, I think, next time, I’ll be trying some meatloaf. Mmm…

Until next time, xoxo


A Happy Cat


My family’s cat, Baby, is staying with me this week. We’ve had Baby (or Chee…which is the only thing we’ve called her in years) since I was 11. She turned 16 on the 4th of July, which means she’s been around for a lot. For me in particular, she’s seen me through middle school, high school, college, 36 plays and musicals, 16 years of dance, 3 boyfriends, 3 break-ups, getting my license, buying a house…the list goes on. I mean, how amazing is it that one cat, one tiny little calico cat that we picked out at the Humane Society when I was in the 5th grade, has seen so much in life? And that’s just my life! She watched three of us grow up. She’s lived in four different houses (although, five now, if you include mine.) She’s been there when we’ve laughed, cried, and for every bowl of ice cream we’ve set on the floor. And even though she growled at me when I tried to bring her down to the living room tonight, she is loving life and a very happy cat.

So, why am I telling you this? Why is this what I’m starting with after 2 months away from my blog? Because. The past few months have sucked. For lots of reasons, none of which I want to get into. But starting today, I’m living life like Chee. I’m living life like a happy cat. I’m going to enjoy the little things in life. I’m going to eat my food with gusto, and hell, if I wake up at 4am and want to eat some more, I’m going to do it. I’m going to enjoy my naps rather than feel guilty about them. I’m going to play when I want, and stop when I don’t. I’m not going to take shit from anyone, because I am a nice, good person and don’t deserve that. I’m going to take care of me, and love hard, and be happy. Because that’s what Chee would do, and I’m taking my cues from a happy cat.

Welcome to the next stage of my life. The next step of the adventure. Welcome back to my Thirty Things.