Good Friends & Good Food

It's hard to beat a good, long lunch with great girlfriends.

I went to Maggiano's in Nashville today with several Bible study friends. We ordered family style and stretched out the meal for about three hours. I didn't take any pictures of the food, but I can probably describe it well enough for you to see and taste it!

We started with crispy fried zucchini and bruschetta. I cannot go to Maggiano's without having their zucchini. Along with our appetizers, we had Caesar and Spinach salads. We all enjoyed both, but the Spinach salad was the hit of the whole table; tossed with roasted red peppers, sweet roasted onions, apple cider vinigrette and topped with smoked bacon and toasted pine nuts. (We requested the gorgonzola cheese on the side.) We had Eggplant Parmesan, Chicken and Spinach Manicotti, Rigatoni D (chicken, mushrooms and rigatoni in Marsala sauce), and Salmon. I had never tried the manicotti before and it is now one of my favorite dishes. But I don't think I could eat a whole order of it because it is so rich. This will be a shock, but I did not even cast a vote on dessert. (When I told John this, he looked stunned and said, "Why? Because you chose everything else?" Ha! I do have quite a reputation. But I told him that, actually, I made it a point to only offer a few recommendations and let everyone else choose!)

The popular dessert vote was Spumoni and Creme Brulee. I like both and had never tried Maggiano's Spumoni. It was amazing and by far the best Spumoni I have EVER tasted.

The food at Maggiano's was incredible, as always. From appetizers to desserts, everything was delicious and dining family style is just so much fun. But food - like life - is meant to be shared. And without great friends to enjoy it with, even a good meal is just a meal. Friends make it an experience. I've said it before and I'll say it again...I am so thankful for my friends!

This first picture is of Clydell and Alicia.

The next picture is of Judy and Barbara.

And this is Susan and me. (Susan and I look like twins in some of our childhood photographs.)

Since moving to Murfreesboro and marrying John, God has blessed me - and enriched my life - with more friends than I ever dreamed of having in a lifetime.

Clydell and I have been friends since 2004. We met at a women's Bible study - the first one I participated in after John and I were married. We have been dear friends ever since and she invited me to join this group last year. At the time, I was just about to publish my book and they were about to begin Beth Moore's study on Esther. The study of Esther was so timely for me and helped me address so many of my fears concerning the book. Each of the women I met in this study quickly became close friends and I will forever think of them whenever I hear or read the words, "...for such a time as this."


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