Happy 93rd Birthday, Great-Grandma H! And a New (to Me) Retail Respite!

Happy Birthday, Great-Grandma H! T loves ya!

We celebrated T’s Great-Grandmother’s 93rd birthday last weekend. Happy Birthday, Great-Grandma H!

Mariachis serenaded Great Grandma H for her 93rd birthday at Frida Mexican Cuisine. It was a lovely afternoon of food, family, and festivities all-around!

The string portion of the mariachi band.

The trumpeter belting out the finale of the Etta James' song "At Last" at Great-Grandma H's request. He brought down the house!

At Grandma H’s request, we needed to go somewhere with a mariachi band; of course, wish granted! Arrangements were made for all of the family to meet up at Frida Mexican Cuisine in Glendale, CA, last Sunday afternoon. Every Sunday Frida’s features a lovely brunch, complete with mariachis. Perfecto!

The clown at Frida Mexican Cuisine. At first we didn't know what to think, but he wound up being pretty great. Gracias!

T made fast friends with the house clown. We thank the house clown for sticking around for as long as he did so we could enjoy our lunch!

T's balloon garb: Sword, holster belt, shield, and Viking hat!

The house clown even made Great Grandma H a nice rose in a vase. As clowns go, he was one of the least creepy and most entertaining, for reals!

And there were clowns for the kiddos, too. While we didn’t know about the clowns ahead of time and were slightly wary of their presence, they wound up being a great additional source entertainment for T, especially since one of the clowns worked his way around the dining room to make balloon art on demand.

Remember Frida Mexican Cuisine for your next event, especially if that event is Sunday brunch!

This is Frida Mexican Cuisine's Taco Sampler lunch plate. I thought I was ordering a few two-bite tacos, but nope. What I got were five full-size tacos stuffed full of meat that I think I offered to the entire table after I got my two-bites from each. Muy delicioso!

It goes without saying that it was a fantastic party and celebration. And RMT’ers please remember, mariachis plus balloon art (mixed in with other folks to hang out with and entertain your kids, of course) gives you a winning chance of being able to sit and enjoy a meal in a restaurant for over an hour. Mix in tasty chips and salsa and a bean-rice-cheese burrito and I believe T thought it was a birthday party for HIM. Sure, T, happy birthday to you, too (whatever it takes, right?), but the real birthday wishes go out to Great-Grandma H! We are so glad we could spend time with you to ring in your new year!

The Americana at Brand in Glendale, CA, is a paradise for residents, workers, and shoppers alike.

This outing also introduced us to the Americana at Brand. Designed and built by the infamous developer (around Los Angeles anyway) Caruso Affiliated, this is the same development company that brought Los Angeles The Grove and now it’s CEO is rumored to be making a concerted bid for the Los Angeles Dodgers. I don’t know Mr. Caruso’s history with professional sports ventures much, but malls I do know, and this mall is a mecca I plan to trek to and worship at again and again.

The dancing fountain show at the Americana at Brand in Glendale, CA.

South Coast Plaza, fair warning! Don’t get me wrong, I love and adore you still, but your special place in my heart as The Cathedral of Malls might be ending, especially given the proximity of the Americana at Brand to the Glendale Galleria, which is literally across the street entrance-to-entrance. Yes, this is a much longer distance away than you, SCP, but it’s definitely a place I can make a day-trip out of, and with T in tow!

The free trolley ride around the shopping town at the Americana at Brand in Glendale, CA.

No, really, I did say that, and I don’t shop much with T in tow either as you well know. But it really is the Holy Land of Shopping, RMT’ers, complete with amenities for the kiddos, including a free trolley ride, outdoor playground, and large green lawn space for the kiddos to run free all while you picnic lunch out in between American Eagle and Anthropologie. Thanks be to retail, and Amen!

C and T walking down one of the "streets" at the Americana at Brand in Glendale, CA. I don't even think C minded too much that we were hanging out in a mall, and that says it all, RMT'ers!

Gratis means FREE just in case you didn't know. But I knew immediately and let my friend know, and after verifying with the counter-clerk at Nordstrom Rack Metro Point at South Coast, she helped herself to a few of the free baubles for her daughter's Crocs!

PS – Attention to those anywhere near Nordstrom Rack Metro Pointe at South Coast… if you have a little girl who loves decorating her Crocs shoes, they have a countertop bin of FREE “Jibbitz” charms for that brand of shoes! The styles left were flowers, cameos, and sea life, and all had pearls or other sparkly adorning the edges. This bin was located at the shoe-pairing window toward the back-right side of the store from the entrances, and this was just yesterday morning that we saw this, so there might be a few left today. Just FYI RMT’ers!

My friend's big, free score of Jibbitz charms for Crocs shoes at the Nordstrom Rack Metro Point at South Coast. Yes, I said all of these were FREE! She picked these up yesterday while we were out shopping around, so this was within the last 24 hours of this blog post. Go get yours ASAP!