Sunday, October 21, 2007

Feliz Cumpleaños Amita!

October around here is known for two things: harsh winds and Amy's birthday. And today we got a healthy dose of both. (More on the winds later...)

Jon and Tim help Amy celebrate her big day. (10/21/07)
Jon and Tim help Amy celebrate her big day. (10/21/07)

With Jon's recent hospitalization and all the stress Amy has been through these past 10 weeks because of it, we wanted to do something special for her birthday. So we got ten or so friends and family members together for Sunday brunch at Cafe Sevilla, a Spanish restaurant in the heart of downtown Long Beach.

Cafe Sevilla in downtown Long Beach. (10/21/07)
Cafe Sevilla in downtown Long Beach. (10/21/07)

The buffet-style brunch there costs $19.95 per person, and that includes one glass of sangría or champagne. But for $24.95, you can get all-you-can-drink sangría and/or champagne. My favorite response came from DD and her boyfriend Steve, who wrote in their RSVP, "Just put us down for $24.95 because we're getting torqued!" Naturally, Tim and I planned to do the same.

We met at Amy and Jon's house. Jon is still not driving yet, so our designated driver was Amy's sister Ashley, who fortunately for us, is under 21 and had no choice but being designated driver. Thank God for the underaged! :)

James and Ashley enjoy Amy's birthday shindig. (10/21/07)
James and Ashley enjoy Amy's birthday shindig. (10/21/07)

The restaurant was nice, but the only downside was that they gave us a booth (all the other big tables were taken with large groups). It was a big booth, but who puts a group of nine in a booth at a buffet? So we had to time our trips to the buffet very carefully. It was a challenge, but we somehow made it work.

Christy and her Mom smile it up for Amy's birthday. (10/21/07)
Christy and her Mom smile it up for Amy's birthday. (10/21/07)

The food at Cafe Sevilla was good, although I have to admit that we're a little spoiled by brunch at Orange Hill Restaurant, which we feel is a far superior Sunday brunch. I was also a little surprised that the paella wasn't better than it was, since that's one of the dishes the restaurant is known for. But the sangría was off the hook.

Amy, Steve and DD at Cafe Sevilla. (10/21/07)
Amy, Steve and DD at Cafe Sevilla. (10/21/07)

After presents, we had the cake, which DD told me she was taking care of. Knowing DD, I was expecting to see some wild and crazy cake molded into the shape of a body part of some sort. Who would expect that she would bring one of the most amazingly-decorated cakes I've ever seen, which was frosted with a gorgeous sunflower design.

The gorgeous sunflower-themed cake. (10/21/07)
The gorgeous sunflower-themed cake. (10/21/07)

Of course the cake was big enough to feed like 50 people. So after everybody at our table had a piece, DD went around the restaurant finding people to take additional slices (including nearly all the restaurant staff). It was a classic DD moment, and it was fun to watch her in action.

Afterwards we headed back to Amy and Jon's house to help with a few things. Tim had to do some tech support for them. Meanwhile I ended up completely passing out on their oversized chair, only to find out later that Tim took pictures of me while I slept (could have been worse — my mouth could have been open).

James passed out after too much sangría. (10/21/07)
James passed out after too much sangría. (10/21/07)

It was a fun day overall, but we couldn't help being concerned for the severe winds that were plaguing Southern California, including the big fire in Malibu we had heard about all day.

Unfortunately things took a turn for the worse when, on our drive home, we noticed an eerie orange glow in the nighttime sky, just above the Orange hills. It was another fire. It wasn't close enough to to endanger us or our home, but it was still too close for comfort. We knew then that the Southland was in the midst of another dangerous fire storm.

3 comments:

Tom said...

Awesome pics! That cake looks delicious, I could eat like, oh, I don't know, three or four pieces...

And wow, haven't heard you proclaim "Thank God for the underaged!" with such zeal since you worked for Big Brothers/Big Sisters back in SF. Oops...I mean...well, great pics! =)

Sorry we missed it. Happy Birthday, Amy!!

Doris said...

What a beautiful cake. Looks like a great time! Happy Birthday.

Anonymous said...

Too much fruit of the vine?!?! After all its only fermented grape juice!

Probably one of the few times he is so peaceful

Grumpy