Let there be LIGHT

The Twin Cities faced some major storms this week. Big rain, big winds, big wreckage, big time power outage. Yup…over 500,000 people without power. I’m going on 3 days now…and I’m not holding my breath. But, I am getting creative with solutions:

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Plus, it could be worse. This could be my car:

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Or I could have been hiding behind this tree:

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So what does one do when there’s no electricity? Well, in my case, I find a boyfriend who has power (thanks, boo). But, more seriously, maximize the daylight! How? Easy: food and fun.

Today, food manifest itself in the Finnish Bistro in the Como neighborhood.

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This adorable bistro is connected to a Dunn Brothers, but it has its own unique menu and bakery display case.

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The menu was chock full of sandwiches, salads, soup, and breakfast dishes. We ordered a caprese sandwich and a yogurt parfait:

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Both were delicious! The sandwich came with ample amounts of pesto, and the yogurt parfait included a generous portion of berries.

With food out of the way…time to move onto fun! This included a bike ride into downtown St Paul ending at the Science Museum.

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During the warmer months, the Science Museum includes an outdoor mini-golf course. After my mini-golfing adventure at the Walker, I’ve been quite keen on the sport. The course at the Science Museum is part of an outdoor garden:

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super.cool.

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Each hole provides visual and written information about how moving water impacts the landscapes it travels through:

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There was even a small garden of strawberries along the course!

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We were there right before closing, so we didn’t look through the actual museum at all, but I am looking forward to going back soon to see the museum’s inside!

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Rustica

Rustica Bakery is a lovely cafe/bakery tucked into Calhoun Village along W Lake Street.

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I first learned about Rustica when I was searching for a source of good challah in the Twin Cities. A quick ‘best-of’ Google search led me there, and the recommendation did not disappoint. Since then, I’ve returned several times for both challah and other types of bread (Bon Appetit named Rustica one of the 10 best bread bakeries in the US!).

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In addition to bread, Rustica features a drink menu of coffee, tea, and espresso drinks as well as a small food menu of starters, salads, soups, and sandwiches.

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Not to mention a beautiful display case of baked goods:

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On this most recent visit, I had an iced green mint tea. The tea was good, but pretty pricey (nearly $3). Besides buying loaves of bread to take home, the only food I’ve ever gotten at Rustica is a bread and jam plate. You can choose any of their bread varieties, and they’ll serve you two slices with homemade jam and fresh Vermont butter.

Overall, I say that Rustica is a great bakery to buy loaves of bread, but it is a bit pricey for a snack or meal. Having never tried their pastries and desserts, I don’t know if they are worth the splurge too. Either way, I would encourage everyone to stop by for a loaf of their favorite bread (or challah on Fridays!).