Little Dove Creations

Friday, February 5, 2016

tahoe weekend: places to eat

On Wednesday’s post I shared all about the great resort we stayed at for my #TahoeBelatedBdayBash (If you’re not following me on Instagram yet, what are you waiting for? All the cool kids are doing it ;) ). Today I wanted to share some of the yummy food we ate while we were there. While it’s true that our room had a full kitchen and we used it to make lots of hot chocolate and breakfast the second morning (and keep my *ahem* milk chilled), one of the best things about this trip was all the delicious food and the fact that I never. had. to. wash. a. dish. Ah, the glamorous life of a mom. :)

We relied on Yelp a lot and it did not disappoint. The first night we went to California Burger Co. for dinner and it was fantastic. Located at Heavenly Village just a block from our resort, even on a Sunday night it was somewhat busy. We called ahead and by the time we walked there we were able to be sat right away. The atmosphere is definitely fun and loud. There was live music outside with plenty of warm fire pits and blankets sitting round, we were almost sad that we didn’t have to wait for our table. Almost. After all, we were really hungry. ;)
Mike ordered the Californian and I ordered the Honorary Texan. Both are served with bottomless sidewinder fries, which were fantastic. The green chili and chipotle mayo on my burger were amazing and Mike loved the avocado and pesto on his. Service was quick and great, and I really loved the attention to detail. When it came time for our check it was brought out to us in a paperback book - such a fun touch! California Burger Co. was more than we would normally spend on burgers, but definitely a nice treat and at least the portions matched the price. 

The following morning we went to Red Hut Café for brunch. There are several different locations and we went to the one on Ski Run and Highway 50. It was about 10:00 on a Monday morning and we were able to be sat right away. We ordered lots of food, all in the name of research, of course. ;) The hubby ordered one of the items off their specials board that included biscuits and gravy, as well as a strawberry waffle. I ordered the green chili and cheese omelet ( hmm… I’m sensing a green chili theme here). Mike loved his biscuits and gravy. Oftentimes places disappoint him with the gravy, but this one was very flavorful with large chunks of sausage in it. The waffle was just okay, maybe due to the fact that it’s not really strawberry season right now. I loved my green chili omelet with pepper jack cheese (you can choose any type of cheese). It’s not the traditional fluffy omelet that I usually think of at restaurants, but I thought the ratio of egg to ingredients was good; Mike thought there was a little bit too much green chili. Service was good and this location (I’m not sure about the other ones) has an ice cream shop and a cute little gift shop area with unique Tahoe souvenirs.
We feel Red Hut Café offers your traditional breakfast foods at comparable prices to other chain breakfast establishments but in a more unique setting.

The last place I’d like to talk about is Scusa Italian Restaurante where we enjoyed my official belated birthday dinner. :) We ate there on a Monday evening and had the place practically to ourselves. I realize it was a Monday evening, but still, considering it’s the high season in Tahoe right now I was surprised there were only a couple other occupied tables. The atmosphere was very cozy and romantic, dim lighting and white tablecloths. Our server was great, very friendly and attentive and rattled off the specials like he’s known them his whole life. The prices were higher than we had expected after reading Yelp reviews, but the portions were generously sized. We also got a free order of garlic bread for checking in on Yelp!
Mike ordered the Pan Seared Chicken in Marsala and I ordered the Spinach Pasta Mediterranean. Mike thought the Marsala was delicious (and that coming from an Italian) and loved that it was a creamy Marsala sauce. One of the sides was asparagus and he was not a fan of how they had prepared and seasoned it, but he just covered it in Parmesan cheese and said it was fine, lol.  My pasta was delicious and a very unique dish. Lots of veggies, which I am a big fan of, and lots of delicious Feta cheese.
When we casually mentioned to our server that we were celebrating my birthday he told us all the desserts they had and I got to pick any one that I wanted! We chose the bread pudding and it was amazing! I took a picture but it didn’t look very appetizing… when will restaurants realize that bloggers need well-lit restaurants?!

What delicious things have you eaten lately? When you go on vacations do you like to eat at unique places, or familiar chains?

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

tahoe weekend: review of 3 peaks resort and beach club

If you follow me on Instagram then you know that I recently went on a little three day trip with my sweet hubby to celebrate my belated birthday. Since I was 9 ½ months pregnant for my 30th birthday last August (I ended up having baby #4 just three days afterwards!) Mike took it upon himself to plan a surprise trip for just the two of us. This was the first time we'd been away together since the summer of 2014, and that was only for one night. He told me he had something planned about a month beforehand so that I could prepare (pump sufficiently and things like that), but didn’t tell me where we were going or what we were doing until the day of!

We pulled up to 3 Peaks Resort & Beach Club around 6:30 on a Sunday evening. Check in was a relatively quick and simple process and we found the front desk staff member to be helpful enough, even offering us pool towels then when we asked about the pool so we wouldn’t have to get them letter. The front desk area is simple and cute, with a television, fireplace, and pool table; although, the pool table costs money to play. In the winter you can also purchase bundles of firewood (if you reserve a room with a fireplace), but the bundles are $10 for a relatively small amount of wood so luckily you can bring your own. Upon check in we found out that they would be putting a $100 hold on our credit card that is still pending on our account over a week later.

We followed the resort map provided to our studio suite that had a king bed, full kitchen, and a fireplace. I was so pleased when I saw the room! The décor is just my style, the perfect blend of modern and rustic touches. Would you check out the damask pattern on some of the walls!!? I don’t know if it’s a thick wallpaper or thin veneer, but I love it and want some in my house! The kitchen in our room was great too. We had a small range, sink, microwave, coffee maker (that we used to boil water for hot chocolate, yum), and refrigerator and freezer.

3 Peaks offers the standard free Wi-Fi, as well as free parking. Since this was winter the pool was closed (which was fine by us!), but the two level hot tub was open and was fabulous after our full day of chilly sight-seeing on Monday.
We never had any issues with rudeness, cleanliness, or noise while we were there. My husband had been concerned since it’s a pet-friendly resort that there would be some problems; however, while we saw a few dogs while there we never heard any and we both feel like the room was one of the cleanest we’ve stayed in (You know how sometimes your feet get black form walking around the carpet? That did not happen here.)The only issue we really had was with our fireplace. Before we settled in for the first night we tried to light a fire but had a really hard time doing so and dealt with lots of smoke billowing into our room. We made sure the flue was open, but still had some problems. My husband seemed a little annoyed since we’d specifically paid extra for a room with a fireplace. We brought it up to the front desk the next morning (very nicely) and by the time we got back at the end of the day it seemed like they had done something (maybe cleaned out the chimney a little bit?) because things went much better with the fire the second night.

The location of 3 Peaks Resort & Beach Club is, in my opinion, perfect. It is located just a block from Heavenly Village and the Heavenly Gondola in South Lake Tahoe and easy walking distance to Stateline, grocery stores, and many restaurants. We were able to walk to a grocery store to purchase a couple things to take advantage of the kitchen in our room. While you’re staying at 3 Peaks you also have access to Lakeside Beach and Marina which according to Yelp is one of the top 10 beaches in South Lake Tahoe; although, it should be noted that the hotel is not located on the beach itself.
All in all, I loved 3 Peaks Resort & Beach Club and I would love to come back the next time we decide to visit South Lake Tahoe. For budget minded-people like us, I feel like it is a great bang for your buck!

(I was not paid or compensated for this review. All opinions are my own.)

Monday, February 1, 2016

"write" stuff valentines

I love Valentine’s Day even more now that I have kids. It is so much fun planning valentines for my little man’s class, but it’s so hard to narrow it down! The Dollar Spot at Target this year had a lot of cute contenders, and for only $3 I could have bought all the valentines I needed for my son’s small class, with plenty left over for next year. A class size of seven is one of the perks of the Charter School hybrid program that he’s in I suppose.

This year I wanted to continue what I started last year and create some candy-free valentines for my little man to pass out. Not that I have anything against candy, of course. Y’all know I LOVE candy! I just know that they get so much sugar with valentines and class party and the like, so I like to be a little more creative with whatever goody he passes out.

Right now my son is all about mazes, so I looked online and discovered this website where you can build your own maze, how fun is that?! Then I created an image in Photoshop. These are the perfect size to print up two on an 8 ½” x 11” sheet of paper. If you didn’t need them large enough to attach pencils to, you could also make them smaller and fit four on a sheet if you wanted to. 

Once they were printed up and trimmed, I just stuck some new pencils on with washi tape and that’s it! My son is really excited to pass his mazes out to his friends. I love that not only were they simple and essentially free (I already had new packages of pencils), but I also love that these valentines incorporate something that my son loves so much!