Monday, August 29, 2011


the only evidence of Irene actually AT our house.. the now permanently sideways zinnias

So life is a little busy and chaotic right now with having just got back in town, no power, etc. and trip pics won't be available for a bit longer (AND of course with all these power outages, my office isn't one of them so I'm working ha), but a few other things have been happening that I wanted to document: 

Last week was the East Coast Earthquake, 
a 5.8 with the epicenter right here in Virginia. 
I didn't feel it. 
I was cruising down Main Street, windows rolled down, singing and such, then walked back into work and everyone was freaking out because it had just happened. I missed my first earthquake. Guess the Jeep is a bit of a bumpy ride, huh? Thankfully no damage done locally.

While we were away, Anthony's Great Uncle Meatball passed away. 
He's been sick for some time so it was somewhat expected, but still a devastating loss for the family and we will miss him greatly.

And as you all know, this past weekend Hurricane Irene came through. Ant and I, being 3000 miles away when it hit, didn't really know what to expect when we got home last night, but as far as we can tell, our area seems to have faired quite well (of course, massive power outages, ourselves included, but otherwise fine). We were really missing those cool San Fran breezes last night with no AC in the house! 
So glad our friends and family all seem to have made out alright as well!

Across the street: we're guessing this might be why we don't have power?!?

And finally, tomorrow is my LAST DAY of work at the Record! WOOHOO!!
Being a holiday paper week, it's a busy time so I'll be doing plenty of work tomorrow (and working other job tomorrow night) but you know I'll be celebrating come Wednesday : )

Our trip was so amazing and I can't wait to share more with you when I've had a chance to catch up on some other things, sort pictures, etc.!

Monday, August 22, 2011

the weekend rundown - sushi, shopping & sister

Whew! I have a million things on my mind!

At least I'm not tired though! It was a great relaxing, low key weekend (yea, I know, maybe I wouldn't be overwhelmed had I been doing things instead of relaxing. family time trumped to do list : ) ha)

mom's beautiful zinnias
The weekend started early for me when I decided to talk Friday off, I have lots of vacay days to burn before starting my new job and unfortunately, not many opportunities to use them.

So I spent Friday morning doing some errands, leisurely gym time, etc. before meeting my sister and Ashley Callis at the pool for some sunning. 

We had a great few hours of sunshine before the storms rolled in, at which point I headed to my couch for some reading (I've been on a reading ROLL lately, picking great books, I'll share another time). That evening, Anthony and I laid low with some take out and a movie. 

Saturday morning Anthony hit the road for Lambstock 2011 (no seriously, that's what it's called, he's there now hah) so I packed up to hang out with my family for the weekend.  I spent a fantastic day with my sister in Newport News.  We spent waaaay too much money but it was such a fun day. (and I did get some productive errands done!) We also got to visit our friend Leslie and her brand new baby Anna in the hospital. On the way home that evening, we shared a perfect dinner of some sushi and hibachi (both were DELICIOUS!).

random photo taken on parents' dock

Sunday morning I went to church with the family, then to the movies with Mom, Jess and Donna to see The Help (I read the book this summer and it was awesome). We enjoyed the movie, I never love a movie after I've read the book but it really was pretty good! Sunday evening we feasted at mom and dad's house on crab cakes and steak, and Jess and I lounged after dinner with a rented movie. 
 (see? all I did all weekend was eat and watch movies)

Today I'm taking a half day from work so leaving soon- I have lots to do! (and again, some time off to use so hey, why not?) Errands, Wal-Mart, laundry, PACKING! then I'm working the bar tonight. Hopefully Ant's coming home tonight (if not, tomorrow morning) so I need to get my trip preparations straight so I can help him with his tomorrow night! 

AND it's a happy Monday with fun news again- new family members!! My cousin Jamie and his wife Heather welcomed their twin girls, Audrey & Olivia, to the world this morning, making my Aunt Joan a GRANDMA! We're so happy for them and can't wait to see the girls!

Saturday, August 20, 2011


Anthony's family dog Simba passed away sometime between Thursday night and Friday morning. 

Ant got Simba as a puppy when he was in college (and let 8 year old Caleb name him), but soon enough because of living arrangements, had to hand him over to his parents, who have loved and cared for Simba for most of the 10 years he's been part of the family. 
In recent years, he's also been Jake's roommate from time to time.

It didn't matter how long Anthony had been away. 
When he was at his parents' house, Simba would sneak in the house and run straight upstairs to the room he knew Ant was sleeping in so he could jump and lick on him.

Rest in peace 'nilla face. 

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Good Eats: Heirloom Tomato & Avocado Stack

So, getting back to that lovely dish I mentioned the other day, 

Mom gets the shout out for this one. Well, Mom and Cooking Light.

This has been a family favorite for several years now ever since she discovered this fantastic recipe from Cooking Light. 

 Combining my obsession with avocado with my love for fresh summer tomatoes and cilantro - it's easy to see why this light summer dish makes frequent appearances on our table as an appetizer or side dish

Mom's version is waaaayyyy prettier than mine ever looks
(and Donna gets credit for assisting with the plating)

Recipe here!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Big News!

So the reason for my deliriously happy state yesterday- 

I got a NEW JOB!

I'll be the new Marketing and Public Relations Director for Rappahannock General Hospital. 

I got the phone call Monday morning and I don't think I've ever gone through a Monday with such a ridiculously goofy smile on my face. 

I've set my dates for leaving the Record and starting at RGH, I've given my notice and will start my new job after Labor Day!

I'm beyond excited about this, I think it's getting back into the kind of work I want to be doing, and on paper so far, everything about it just seems perfect!

I am one happy girl : )

Thanks for the congrats messages from
those of you who already know!

Monday, August 15, 2011

the weekend rundown - cruising, Calvin & cocktails

Happy Monday everyone!

It really is a happy Monday- I could NOT be happier right now! 
More to come on that later though : ) 

Great weekend full of friends and fun!

Our friends Carter and Rachel came down 
from DC to visit for the weekend. 

Carter has a fabulous new puppy, Calvin.  He's the sweetest, cutest thing and was so well behaved all weekend that it just almost 
(easy Ant- that's a BIG almost : ) ha) made me want one of our own. 

We went for a cocktail cruise on the boat Friday evening with our friends Sarah and Wyatt, then when Carter and Rachel got in town, we went home to grill burgers and hang out. 

Saturday after a trip to the Local where all the patrons fawned over Calvin's cuteness, we hopped on the boat for a day of cruising. 

ROUGH waters prevented us from making it to a friend's house across the river, so we settled for some play time on Sand Island. 

It was Calvin's first boat ride and first run in the sand!

Later that evening we boated over to the Tides Inn- where we ran into Sarah and Wyatt- and the 6 of us enjoyed drinks on the patio. Around 9 we realized it was probably time to find some dinner so we headed to Trick Dog where we were joined by our friend Gwen who is officially moved to Richmond today! Gonna miss my gal pal!

On Sunday we hit Carwash Cafe for some awesome brunch before seeing off our visitors, then later that afternoon we went to my parents' for dinner celebrating Jack heading back to school today!

Look at my Mom's beautiful table setting!

(she paints those glasses herself!)
Wondering about this delicious looking dish? 
More to come on that too! 

Hope everyone's week is off to a great start- I know mine is!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Mid-week oyster date

Nothing like a little Wednesday girl's night out

Anne-Sophie and I enjoyed a cocktail/oyster/photography date at Merroir

Mainly because they have such a good looking bartender 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Hanging with the Babies

Anthony and I got in some play time with his
baby cousins at Cross Tides

We played in the pool, brought them Pizza Hut (hey, we're not above bribes to win them over), then went for ice cream. 

You can see Ant has no trouble connecting with 3 and 5 year olds. 

or using their 20 month old sister as a human shield. 

Ant and Taegan

Beautiful little Ella 

Then on to the ice cream...

Ella and Mike

Macky was loving it

so when hers was gone, she moved on to Anthony's

He's a sucker for these baby girls so of course 
he shared his with Ella too

sweet Lilah Gracie

While getting ice cream, we ran in to our friends Holly and Chris, with their brand new addition, cute little baby Tucker

We love playing with these sweet babies! 

.....then sending them home with their parents : ) 

Macky's huge amazing eyes!

(the rest of the pics can be seen here)

Monday, August 8, 2011

the weekend rundown - shrimp, shower & sushi

It was on on the go kind of weekend that's left us BEAT thanks to a grueling combination of busy/late night work schedules, followed by early morning obligations- I'm not sure we ever really quite caught up! 

my lovely zinnias and my camerabag 1974 effect

Thursday night I worked late at Trick Dog, then Friday night Ant worked late at Merroir.

I spent the whole evening with him at Merroir, and was thankfully joined by Ryan and Peyton when they stopped by and we shared some delicious fresh caught OBX shrimp for dinner.

Saturday morning we were both up and at 'em early, as Ant headed to Virginia Beach for a day of paddle boarding and beaching with his buddy Travis who was in town for the weekend visiting his wife's family. I hit the gym and the farmer's market before heading to Mathews to attend a baby shower for one of my oldest friends. 

Lauren (or Lou as we call her) and her husband Sean are expecting a baby boy, their first, in September. Our friend Kelly and her mom put on a wonderful shower for her with fantastic food, crafty decorations, and of course, great presents for the sweet little boy we just can't wait to meet!

the AWESOME banner Kelly made for baby Aidan!

During the shower I sat next to sweet little Callie who turned TWO yesterday!

After the shower, the girls and I did some swimming/lounging in the pool before I headed back to the Northern Neck, quite tired from the events of the past 2 nights. Ant returned home from the beach equally exhausted, so after a yawn-filled attempt at a night out with some drinks at Thai Pot, we settled on take out and called it a night.

Sunday we were back up EARLY to head to Richmond, where I took a photography class for a few hours in the morning and Ant got to spend time with family (and celebrate Caleb's 18th birthday!! Happy birthday Pookie!). 

My class was pretty good, I knew most of what he talked about but I'm not sorry I did it and definitely picked up some new things. 

Afterwards, we ran some errands then came back to get in a boat ride and spend some time with all the BABIES running around the river, including Ella and some adorable Logan kiddos. 

An hour of babies wore us slam out : ) 

We retreated to the couch with the sushi, edamame, and pad thai salad we picked up in Richmond to savor the last few hours of the weekend.

(obviously I didn't make this food- Whole Foods baby! and if you've never had this beer, you're missing out. It was my fave when Osaka in Richmond used to carry it, Whole Foods is the only place I've seen it since!)