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Birthday Weekend Continues in Oldtown

We last left off on Thursday night, when Birthday Weekend was just beginning. Senior year perks include no classes on Fridays, so after a 6 mile run and Sprout’s detour I drove myself to Oldtown Scottsdale to meet some ASU friends and my parents. Honestly, I’ve been craving the Phoenix sunshine as if it were a pint of mint chocolate chip. Sweet, sweet sunshine! We were down by the pool within 20 minutes of my arrival. "Birthday Suit" (

Poolside necessities (

My mom is one of my best friends so I loved getting to sit by the pool and catch up on all the gossip and girl stuff :) The hotel blocked the sun pretty early, so when it became shady we traded in bikinis for boots to head downtown.

Oldtown Scottsdale is SO CUTE. Some of the buildings look like saloons, there are strings of white lights across the streets, the trees are lit up, and the people are so pretty. Probably because they live in this gorgeous sunshine all year long! I’ve been eating extra healthy and working out extra hard for the past month, ready for some birthday treats. First, margaritas at Salty Senorita. We sat on the outdoor patio under colorful umbrellas. I got a cadillac with prickly pear, sans salt.

Prickly Pear margarita at Salty Senorita in Scottsdale ( of my best friends, Chelsea, lives in the area and met up with us for dinner. I’m becoming more and more jealous of her decision to transfer to ASU after our sophomore year together. I can definitely get used to flip flops and sundresses in February!

Chelsea and I in oldtown (

We also witnessed “hangry” Kenzie…..we left for dinner around 6:30pm, walked around looking at restaurants for a while before deciding on Hula Modern Tiki Bar in Oldtown. We put our name in around 7:20 and waited until 9pm for dinner. My hunger affected my mood for a bit…..I’m not very chatty when my stomach is growling! :) All was well once this amazing Jawaiian Jerk Chicken plate came out.

Hula's modern tiki in Scottsdale (

Jawaiian Jerk Chicken Plate at Hula's modern tiki ( funny looking brown things in the front are plantains, and the squares in the back are “Jawaiian Johnny Cakes” which are cornmeal, molasses and more plantains.)

By the time we finished dinner and walked back to the hotel around 10pm, we were too full for birthday dessert. Saturday morning began with one heck of a hike up Camelback Mountain (some kind of unplanned Valentine’s-Day-hike-tradition?) but I’ll save that recap for a bit later because this girl is off to the pool.

I hope you felt some love yesterday! But if not…..V-day candy is on clearance today ;)

Ping Pong Night at (Coach) Jack Daniels’

Last night, the guys and girls cross country teams were invited to the house of legendary Olympic marathon runner and coach Jack Daniel’s home for a British-style Olympic Ping Pong Tournament/ Party! His wife Nancy had attended the London 2012 games, and returned with plenty of loot to give away as prizes and raffles. Everything with London themed, napkins and all.

That night, I learned something. I learned that I SUCK at ping pong. Truly, it was embarrassing and I didn’t make it out of the first bracket but had fun watching my teammates play round after round.

There was plenty of food to go around because everyone brought a dish to share. My friend Kerri and I both live in the dorms, with only a common kitchen to use so we teamed up to bring something together. Our original idea came from somewhere in the blogosphere, a post I thought was pretty easy and cute. It was Apple Cinnamon Treats, like Rice Krispie Treats with Apple Cinnamon Cheerios instead, and apple slivers blended in. Sounds good right?

Don’t get your hopes up.

Sadly, it was a fail. I don’t think we did anything wrong; we followed the recipe exactly but Cheerios aren’t meant to be covered in marshmallow goo and left out. They tasted stale, soggy, and there was no way I was going to bring a pile o’ cheerios to a party. Now that I think about it, I don’t know why it ever sounded like a good idea… Needed a Quick Plan B!

Remember how I said yesterday I was going to bake pumpkin cookies with my friend Chelsea? Well they came out soooo good, I decided to make another batch to bring to the party. Pumpkin Hazelnut Cookies with White Chocolate Chips, anyone?

Who doesn’t like a soft pumpkin cookie on a chilly fall night? (Or would you prefer some sticky cheerios?) They were thoroughly enjoyed by a bunch of hungry ping pong players, along with the tables and tables of dishes everyone else brought. This team can cook! If you’re nice, I’ll share the recipe tomorrow ;)

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