5th Wedding Anniversary Celebration

Last weekend was a very special one for Erik and me–five years ago Saturday, we got hitched!


Erik made our fifth wedding anniversary extra special by planning a “tour de fives.”  Basically it was an entire, jam-packed day based on fives.  For example, we saw the movie The Five Year Engagement ($5 tickets!), made a stop at Five Guys (for the only vegan item on their menu–fries), went to the gorgeous Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, where they have about five miles of hiking trails…and a number of other things.  It was a lot of fun, and it included a lot of yummy food (our fridge was packed with leftovers!)!  Here’s a brief recap of a few of the more vegan-specific items…

After the movie we headed to Noodles & Company for lunch.  Noodles is one of my favorite places to eat for a quick meal.  They sell noodles, sandwiches and salads “from around the world.”  You can add organic tofu to any meal, and their tofu is among the best I’ve had at a restaurant.

Noodles has a number of vegan/veganizable options, but I’ve always stuck to the Japanese Pan Noodles bowl.  I like it so much that I’ve never been able to pass it up–until last weekend, when I opted for the Pasta Fresca from the Mediterranean menu.  It’s a penne dish with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, white wine, roasted garlic, red onion, tomato and spinach (just ask them to hold the parm and feta).  Erik ordered it as well, and its robust flavor may have made it a new favorite!

Noodles & Company - Pasta Fresca

After Noodles, we walked to the adjacent mall and had about 15 minutes to find an unplanned $5 gift.  I loved what Erik got me, a block of vegan Sultana Summer Berries Delight soap from LUSH Cosmetics.  It’s very fragrant and soft.  It kinda looks like ice cream, too–don’t you just want to take a bite!?

LUSH Sultana Summer Berries Delight Soap

I hadn’t heard about LUSH before, but many of their products are vegan.  From what I gather, at least some of their items are sold deli-style, in that you have them cut off however much of any particular product you want, and they then weigh it, wrap it in paper and place a deli-esque label on it–so fun!  I’m looking forward to visiting their store soon.

For dinner we went back to Eden Alley.  We started with the Baby Falafel, served with rice and hummus (it normally comes with non-vegan Tzatziki sauce, which is what pictured below–we took the pic before they replaced it with hummus).  We both adore falafel, and really enjoyed their version.

Eden Alley Baby Falafel

Erik loves his veggie burgers, so that’s what he got (again!).  After much back-and-forth–I even ran to the kitchen immediately after placing my original order to ask for more time to deliberate, at which point I felt obligated to change it–I went with the BBQ Bruschetta.  I’m so glad I did!  Portobello and tempeh stewed with their sweet BBQ sauce made with tomatoes and beets, served over grilled tofu, served over pickles, tomatoes and cashew cheese, served over thick, artisan bread.  Yum!  The portobello and tempeh mixture was very sweet, but when mixed with everything else, it made for a delectable combination.

Eden Alley BBQ Bruschetta

We took our dessert, an apple crumble, to go so that we could enjoy it later.  It was perfectly spiced, and we liked that it was so light.

Eden Alley Apple Crumble

And, of course, it wouldn’t be an anniversary without our customary anniversary pizza.  On Friday night, Erik came home with a pizza from Whole Foods and we made sure to reserve a piece just for Saturday.  It was topped with their spicy sauce, pineapple, mushrooms, seitan sausage, green peppers, poblano peppers, and a smattering of Daiya mozzarella cheese.  Oh. My. Word.  It was fantastic!  It was crispy, but still soft enough that with the big slices you needed two hands to eat it.

Whole Foods Daiya Veggie Pizza

Thanks, Erik, for a wonderful celebration of five wonderful years!

PS. Knowing he had an entire day planned, I wanted to add something in myself, so I got up a little early to make breakfast–recipe coming up next!  :)


  1. Jaymie Russell says

    Happy anniversary! He did well! (: The penna fresca looks so good! I ate at Noodles when traveling once and really liked it. I can’t remember what it was called but it was some type of Indonesian dish and delicious!

  2. Jess says

    Happy anniversary! Sounds like a very fun day, and all the food looks so yummy. And the soap DOES look like ice cream, lol!

  3. says

    Happy anniversary! It looks like you had a wonderful day! We have a Noodles & Co. in our town, but I’ve never had it. I’m impressed with their clear nutritional information and how they have things broken down into allergens. That would make for stress-free ordering! I’m going to give them a try sometime!

  4. Randy says

    What a wonderful anniversary celebration! Congrats, you guys! My wife Cheryl and I recently celebrated our 30th and we also went to Eden Alley (where else?) for dinner. But I love what you said about the tofu at Noodles & Co. I’ve thought the same thing. The only other area mainstream restaurant that I think compares with it is Pei Wei. They also have awesome tofu.

    • says

      Thanks, Randy! Congrats to you and your wife on your 30th anniversary! What a great accomplishment :) After we sat down to dinner, we realized that we went to Eden Alley last year for our anniversary, too. I’ve only eaten at Pei Wei once, and I didn’t have any tofu, but I wasn’t too impressed with my meal. I hear from a lot of people that love the place though, so perhaps I should give it another chance. Any recommendations?

      • Randy says

        Well, I really only get one thing there, but it’s enough to keep me going back. I get the Japanese Teryaki with vegetables and tofu, and I always get it on rice noodles although you can also get it on brown rice. They really pile on LOTS of the veggies and tofu and, like I said before, I really like their tofu. I think they roast it and the texture is quite firm and chewy.

  5. says

    That was an amazing celebration. I love that pizza! I wish you all the love in the world! Can’t wait to read what you prepared for breakfast!

    • says

      That’s so kind, thank you so much! I’m hoping to post the recipe this weekend or early next week–I have to make it again so that I can snap a few pictures…oh, the sacrifices I make ;)

  6. Kristin says

    Found your blog looking for vegan options at Noodles and Co. Read this post a little further and saw you posted about Eden Alley – I live in KC, too! What a surprise. Now I am going to do a search to find your thoughts about FuD! :)


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