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Home sweet [temporary] home

October 24, 2010

Hello from Oklahoma City! My weekend has been BUSY, to say the least. I should take this chance to warn you that my blog-reading and -commenting is likely to be more sporadic while I’m here at 105 Degrees. It’s shaping up to be an eventful couple of months, so I will do what I can, but if you see less of me on your blogs, that’s why! I still love you all. 😀

Before I start talking about OKC, let me first show you what Matt and I did on Friday before leaving: Phantom’s Feaste! It’s a yearly event that happens at the tail end of the Kansas City Renaissance Festival, and it’s sort of an interactive dinner theatre production. Matt took me last year for my first time, and I had a ball, so we went again this year. The theme was “Dracula: A Madman’s Tale,” which I was excited about (gotta love literary allusions!). We whetted our appetites with Merlot.

Matt and I had requested vegetarian dinners in advance. We knew they’d probably be dairy-heavy, and we were right. My tummy didn’t feel so good afterward, but I made do. As Lucy began to fall under Dracula’s spell onstage, we were started off with bread and a creamy roasted red pepper bisque, which was definitely the highlight dish of the evening for me. (Sorry for all these poor photos; they were taken in super-dim light.)

As Renfield ranted and raved, and Dracula began to terrorize Jonathan and Mina, we received our main course of vegetarian lasagna with a side of succotash. The lasagna was too cheesy for me, and the succotash too buttery, but hey, it was better than the roast beef everyone else was eating!

Dessert was what they called “tiger cake,” a layered chocolate and vanilla cake drizzled with white chocolate and raspberry sauces. Not bad! We devoured it as we cheered Professor Van Helsing on in his vampire hunt.

We were led back through Dr. Seward’s sanatorium on our way out of the festival grounds. It was a fun evening! I’m already looking forward to next year’s.

I didn’t actually end up packing till Saturday morning, and Matt and I finally left town (in separate vehicles) a little before 2pm. At 7pm, we arrived at my home for the next two months: Extended Stay America.

It’s really pretty nice, especially for how inexpensive it is.

The best part? The kitchenette, obviously!

Matt and I ate a vegetarian Indian buffet dinner, then wound up driving around Oklahoma City’s downtown in search of a fun-looking bar. We didn’t want to deal with Bricktown (a bar-packed district near downtown that was a veritable zoo), so we headed back north to where the hotel is, and we found a bar right down the street called Electro Lounge. It was a chill little place with a great DJ (Matt especially went crazy for all the old-school goth tunes he was spinning); we had a good time.

Today, after we got up and ready, we shared a Jamba Juice smoothie and bowl of oatmeal, then visited Akin’s Natural Foods market (OKC doesn’t have a Whole Foods yet!) to pick up some fruit. Matt left this afternoon; he flew out of OKC to Boston for a business trip (which is why we drove down separately. He’s flying right back into OKC on Friday night). On a stopover in Dallas, he emailed me this photo of his dinner, a Mediterranean wrap at Au Bon Pain. So here’s an almost vegan boyfriend “leftover”!

After working out, grazing on a few of my snacks, and partaking of some much-needed relaxation time, here I am! I’m BEAT. Bedtime’s going to be early tonight. And tomorrow morning at 8am is…day one of 105 Degrees! EEE!

34 Comments leave one →
  1. October 24, 2010 7:21 pm

    That sounds like fun! October really is the best month, isn’t it?

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:28 pm

      I love October! The weather is beautiful, a lot of great events happen, and then…Halloween!

  2. October 24, 2010 7:28 pm

    Good luck tomorrow!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:28 pm

      Thanks Aimee!

  3. October 24, 2010 7:46 pm

    Aw, Bricktown isn’t that bad :). You should make a point to get there early and hang out for a night….the river walk is great! Restaurant-wise, my veg sister and I recommend Cafe Oasis (if it’s still there) near the Asian market. Their tofu is amazing, and who doesn’t like stir-fry? Also, There is a pizzeria that has cashew cheese….had to look up the name: . Also of note, their hummus is to die for 😉

    Damn. I’m all kinds of jealous. I know where I’m going for at least one meal the next time I’m visiting the family!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:30 pm

      Heh, yeah, if we got to Bricktown earlier, I imagine I’d be more into it. Know of any place to park for free?

      I’m not sure I’ll have the time (or room left in my stomach!) to eat out much, but if I do, your recommendations are some of the first places I’ll go! You had to mention the hummus, didn’t you? 😛

      • October 26, 2010 2:22 am

        Hehe….I know the power of the chickpea ;). For parking, we never had a problem parking in the lot for whatever bar we planned to attend. You should have pretty decent access to public transit, though, I would think.

        • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
          October 26, 2010 7:24 am

          Public transit as in…the bus? Hrm =/ Maybe we’ll give it another try and look a little harder for free parking. We kept seeing $5 and $10 signs everywhere we looked.

  4. October 24, 2010 8:34 pm

    That cake looks great as does all your food from Friday. Matt’s dinner wrap looks appetizing as well. I’m actually hungre now and need to get something in me!

    Glad it’s gone well yesterday and today. Enjoy it all. Soak it up. We are thankful to be able to help get you there!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:32 pm

      I definitely left KC with a full stomach and sated appetite. I’m ready now for all the raw stuff!

  5. October 25, 2010 12:21 am

    Lovely to see you settled in, dear! I stayed at an Extended Stay America in Austin in 2008 and it was amazing… so large and such a fantastic kitchenette. I may not have cooked using the stove/oven, but by golly did I make use of the freezer for vegan ice cream! 😉

    And completely understand that you’ll be busy over the coming months. Don’t you worry about “blog duties”, and focus on having the amazing time you’ve been dreaming of. Oh, but do email me eventually 😉

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:34 pm

      I actually found out I have one of the biggest rooms, and perhaps THE biggest room, in the hotel! 😀

      Thanks for understanding about my busy-ness. Rest assured that even if I don’t comment, I’m still reading! And yes, yes, that email, it will happen…or perhaps a Skype chat instead? 😉

  6. October 25, 2010 7:26 am

    Looks like a fun weekend!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:34 pm


  7. kathleen permalink
    October 25, 2010 9:45 am

    good luck on your first day at 105 degrees!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:34 pm

      Thanks Kathleen!

  8. October 25, 2010 1:49 pm

    I’m SO excited to follow you through your journey at 105 degrees! I WANT WANT WANT so badly to go there! I was a little obsessed last year when they first opened.

    Have a great time with your first day!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:36 pm

      Gah, I have been where you are! I don’t think it’s really sunk in yet that I’m actually HERE. It’s a bit of a mindf*ck!

      I believe you will make it here yourself someday. 🙂

  9. October 25, 2010 3:22 pm

    Phantom’s Feaste sounds like a lot of fun! My husband would totally love that!
    I’m glad you are all settled in. I hope your first day has been great. I’m looking foward to hearing all about it!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:37 pm

      It is! The Feaste is different every year, and it’s such a unique event to begin with. You can’t help but have a ball. 🙂

      I’ll be blogging about day 1 very shortly!

  10. October 25, 2010 5:08 pm

    Yay for 105 degrees! Let the adventures begin 🙂

    Looks like you’re already enjoying some insanely good eats in OKC. Have fun during your first week and keep us posted on what classes are like 🙂

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:37 pm

      YES! It’s a little scary, but I’m ready for these adventures to be underway. You’ll hear all about them! 😀

  11. October 25, 2010 5:21 pm

    No surprise you’re beat – sounds like you packed a tremendous amount in to your last days in Kansas and then to your first hours in OK!

    Glad you have a good, cosy-looking spot to call home for the meantime: I’m sure that’s pretty important for adjusting to something as exciting (but also stressful) as a new course in a new place.

    Going to school is such fun, though – and going to school for something you’re passionate about? Best ever!

    Look forward to hearing any snippets you manage to share!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 5:41 pm

      You’ve got that right! I slept for over 10 hours last night!

      The comfort aspect of my lodgings is big deal to me. I do feel stress over these courses, so having a relaxing, spacious place to come to after class is key for me.

      I was lucky enough to go to school once already to pursue a passion (B.A. in Linguistics, with honors, 2006, University of Kansas :)), so the fact that I’m here now, immersing myself in what I hope will become a long career, makes me feel unendingly fortunate.

  12. Matt permalink
    October 25, 2010 7:38 pm

    Well, I took out the olives from that wrap. But the rest of it was good. Hummas, lettuce, mediterranean sauce of some nature. Overall, good for airport food.

    So proud of my honey for following dreams!


    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 8:31 pm

      Yeah, yeah. But you did eat that Thrive Diet pizza with the olives on it, so it’s only a matter of time… 😉

      So proud of MY honey for finding healthy airport eats! 😛 And so very thankful to have your love and support.

  13. October 25, 2010 7:45 pm

    That sounds like some good creepy fun!

    Oy – those extended stay hotels! The kitchens are nice, but the mister and I have a hard time sleeping on those super hard mattresses. I hope you find them more comfortable! 🙂

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 8:33 pm


      Oh my gawd, tell me about it! That’s my main complaint, too. I had more than a few middle-of-night awakenings thanks to all the tossing and turning I was doing. However, I did manage to net more than enough sleep, luckily. 🙂

  14. October 25, 2010 7:49 pm

    I’m so excited for you, so I can’t imagine how excited you must be! I will be checking in often to read of your un-cooking adventures!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 25, 2010 8:35 pm

      Thank you so much, Michelle! Even if it’s “only” via the internet, the support and encouragement I’ve received from people like you is something I very much take to heart. I will faithfully share my adventures in the raw with you!

  15. October 26, 2010 8:22 pm

    Sounds exciting! Good luck! 🙂

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 26, 2010 8:26 pm

      Thanks! 😀

  16. October 27, 2010 11:59 am

    I’m so jealous that you guys went to the Phantom’s Feaste!! Being from Kansas City myself, my friends always talked about wanting to go to that! Now, I’m almost never in town for the Renaissance Festival… 😦 But at least I got a sneak peek of it through your post!

    Good luck in OKC!!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      October 27, 2010 5:07 pm

      Dude! If you’re ever in the area in late October, don’t miss it! 🙂

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