Saturday, July 7, 2007

4th of July Salt Lake City!

Fourth of July 2007 began with a wonderful hike to Lake Mary. Mom, Lizzie and Spencer took it easy and enjoyed the scenery, and Dad, in near marathon shape, powered ahead with a "real hike."

Immediately following the hike was the annual Brighton breakfast hosted by the Wasatch 2nd Singles Ward. We each got the 'blue' breakfast, pancakes, eggs, and sausage. The line was long, but the food was good.

Fourth of July evening we rode bikes over to Sugarhouse Park to see the fireworks. It was crazy crowded with lots of interesting people. We even saw a skater dog. (See the skater dog.)

Here's Catherine, Spence and Brinton (with Hillary on the phone).

The fireworks show lasted half an hour and had a wonderful finale. (See the finale.)

All in all, it was a great Independence Day!

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Chocolate Breakfast

I love chocolate. I crave chocolate, a lot. No meal is complete without at least a morsel of cocoa to end on. I'll take milk chocolate in a pinch, but dark chocolate is my favorite. (Semi-sweet chocolate chips are great for chocolate emergencies.) Last winter I found a place, Hatch Family Chocolates, that sells dark hot chocolate. Holy cow, that stuff is good.

I love chocolate fountains. The first time I saw one was at a wedding reception. I couldn't believe it: there was flowing chocolate, just like in Willy Wonka's factory! It was a dream come true. At this reception there were two fountains, one milk, one dark (wonderfully). Strawberries, cinnamon bears, bananas, and other things, were used as mediums to get the chocolate to your mouth. It was heaven.

I eat a lot of cereal. (I'm a bachelor.) Growing up we never ate 'sugar cereals.' Mom didn't think it was good for us. We never had Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Golden Grahams, or Lucky Charms. This was hard as child, with all those 'sugar cereal' ads between the cartoons. Once, I went to Blake's house and saw in their cupboard a bunch of 'sugar cereals.' I was astounded. "Oh, lucky!" I shouted. I was depressed that the next morning I had to settle for Cheerios. Cheerios, Cheerios, Cheerios; I had so many Cheerios growing up, I still have a hard time eating them now. Anyway, when I left home, I thought "I'm going to treat myself right. Bring on the sugar cereals! Mom ain't buying the cereal now, I am, and I'm going to buy sugar cereals!" It was great. I discovered the Malt-O-Meal discount cereals--the same as the name brand, but cheaper, and in bigger quantities. Cinnamon Toasters, Honey Graham Squares, Marshmallow Mateys; it was fantastic.

So I overcame my childhood conditioning that one should not eat sugar cereals. But, there lingered in my mind this idea that one should not eat chocolate for breakfast. I couldn't bring myself to do it. In spite of my declared liberation from 'healthy' cereal breakfasts, I still couldn't bring myself to eat chocolate cereals for breakfast. Yes, I love chocolate, and yes I love sugar cereals, but chocolate for breakfast? Certainly this went against nutritional wisdom.

Until. . . . John left a bag of Cocoa Dyno-Bites (brand named Cocoa Pebbles, i.e., Rice Krispies covered in chocolate) on the counter. I came home from work, looking for a snack. "Hmmm. . ." I thought, looking at the over-sized bag of Malt-O-Meal cereal. "I wonder. . . ." It wasn't breakfast. This was just a snack, right? I would eat Oreo's for a snack. That's chocolate. Why not some Cocoa Dyno-Bites? I poured a bowl (with whole milk) and dug in. It was soo good! I poured a second bowl. I was hooked.

I'm on my sixth or seventh bag (these are big bags, mind you), and I don't feel the least bit bad about it. I eat them for breakfast, second breakfast, lunch, after-work snack, bed-time snack, whenever the heck I want. Nutritious? I'm not worrying about that now: I'm a bachelor, and bachelor's don't have to eat right. I don't have kids, so there's no one to teach about eating right. I can eat whatever I want. Including chocolate sugar cereals.

Cocoa Dyno-Bites, anyone?