Part 2 of the honeymoon!

So it was my intention to update a few times during the honeymoon so that I could properly keep track of everything we did without having to go back and think. Needless to say, that did not happen. Oops! Well, at least I can give a broad overview of what an awesome time we had.

We spent 6 days in Napa and Sonoma (stayed in Santa Rosa). The second day we went to the Petrified Forest where Supercat followed us for the entire walking tour. Also visited the Calistoga Old Faithful and a few really tasty wineries -- Charles Krug, Ehlers Estate (bought a bottle, proceeds go to the cardiovascular institute), Beringer and Flora Springs. The first two were the best, and the others were interesting but I didn't like the wines at all. We had dinner at the Culinary Institute of America's Wine Spectator Graystone Restaurant, which while not being the best meal I've ever eaten, it was a great experience and pretty good food. They sat us in front of the fireplace and we had a bottle of wine -- I had the loin of lamb, and Christen had the flank steak. Both tasty. The best part was the dessert -- some sort of frozen custard with strawberries ... yum! Day three we took Hwy 12 down toward Carneros and hit Chateau St. Jean (fantastic, bought a bottle of reserve Malbec) Ravenswood (also tasty, but did tasting with pretentious wine guy from Chicago who drove us up the wall), Benziger, Sebastiani (the Cherryblock was amazing) and Kenwood (not so much). The best place of the day was Moon Mountain, where we ended up on a private tour of the winery which included the working wine caves (as opposed to historical wine caves like at Beringer) and a barrel tasting of different Cab Franc years (I personally liked the younger one, but I'm not a Cab Franc drinker -- it's too dry for me). It was awesome, and we got a bottle there but I don't remember which one.
We had some time to kill after the last winery, so we decided to drive out to Yountville so I could take pictures of French Laundry for Brad and Jordan (eat there? I don't have that kind of money). We ate at Bouchan which was a block away and was also fabulous.
Day four was rainy and nasty, so we drove down to Fairfield and toured the Jelly Belly factory -- smelled so sugary! After that we went to the Charles Schultz museum (very neat) and ate dinner at a fabulous Indian restaurant in downtown Santa Rosa -- it was likely the best meal of the trip. I had the Lamb Saag and Christen had some Indian venison concoction, and we had a bottle of wine to wash it down. Uh! I wish I was still there!
Day five was still a bit rainy, so we drove north to the Ave of the Giants to see the Giant Redwoods. It was neat, but I can only see so many trees, so I fell asleep while Christen drove out to the coast. How gorgeous! We drove down the coast and stopped on one of the beaches, and I took crazy amounts of pictures!
Day six we left for Yosemite, but first we stopped at Dariouch for a tasting, as I had heard about them from 3WineGuys and I was interested. They were way over the top! Very Persian .... the wine was good, but I think we had better on the Route 12 day, so we headed out to Yosemite.

Our first night in Yosemite we drove through the south part and made it up to the snow -- this is only the second time I've seen snow, and the first time I was able to enjoy it. The only other time was a band trip to Indy in '98 -- how sad is that! We spent 3 nights in Oakhurst, which is right below the south entrance to Yosemite. It was spectacular! We hiked to 3 falls, saw all the Ansel Adams sights, made a snowman (he was 6 inches tall, but still), had snowball fights, saw the Giant Sequoias, and ate fantastically. Sushi two nights, and Ducey's resort restaurant the middle night. We had a cottage at Houndstooth Inn, and it was beautiful -- and huge! Fireplace, Jacuzzi tub, 2-head shower .... I can't say enough about the place. Wine country was wonderful, but that bed and breakfast was amazing.

After Yosemite we headed to Vegas. It was a long drive, but we hit Hoover Dam first, because you have to see Hoover Dam at least once. I've seen it, so I'm good for the next 20 years. :) We stayed at the Stratosphere on the end of the Strip, and they upgraded our room from a regular one to a honeymoon suite for very little more! It was a very nice room, but we hit the rest of the strip for most of the time. I loved all the casinos -- so crazy! We saw Beatles Love by Cirque Du Soliel, which was phenomenal and indescribable ... if you go, spring for the good seats, it definitely made a difference! The second night we saw Spamalot, which was hilarious. In between we saw as much as we could -- Mandalay Bay, Luxor, Excaliber, Paris, the Venetian, NY NY, Belagio, Treasure Island, Wynn, the Mirage, Ceasar's ... I think that's everywhere we went. We actually missed very few on the strip. I didn't get to see anything off the strip, and I have several friends in Vegas that I didn't get to see because I had very limited internet access between Sonoma and the airport, but I guess there's always next time! I had a blast!
Anyhow, I'm sure there's more, and I'll definitely post pictures but for now, ta ta!


Quick wedding update and part 1 of the honeymoon!


So I'm finally an old married woman. It's weird; I don't feel married. I feel good, but being married makes me feel so old!
The wedding was beautiful. I have a few pictures that were emailed to me that I'm going to put up on my MySpace for now, but I'll put up the real thing when I finally get home … I really wasn't nervous until my flowers didn't show up until 1:30 and I freaked out, but then they finally got there and I was able to get dressed and walk down that aisle! I started shaking when I took Dad's arm, and I kept tripping over my slip but we managed to get through it and it was fantastic! The reception was great -- so much fun, and I got to see everybody and dance … I don't feel it was long enough -- I could have done that all night, if it wasn't for my 4-inch heels! I was in pain by the end of the night, but thankfully Shea and Kyle followed us to the hotel and brought our luggage (although after the hasty exit from the church I was missing several key items, like my bra and razor!)
We left for the airport at 3:30am, but our flight was delayed until after 6am. That put us an hour behind, and we missed our connecting flight in ..:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Charlotte by more than 20 minutes. Thankfully, a manager squeezed us on the 9:20am flight to San Francisco on stand-by, but it was a good thing that nothing happened because they never took our names so we weren't on the manifesto. Alas, our luggage did not follow us.
San Francisco was neat but very cold. It was a high of the early 60s, and all our warm clothing was in my bag, which continued to be lost. Christen's came in the middle of the night Monday, but mine didn't show. We walked through Chinatown and Union Square, and ate dinner at the Stinking Rose -- I totally wanted to order the "Silence of the Lamb Shank with fava beans", especially since we were drinking a bottle of the house Chianti, but I just couldn't fit it in so I stuck with these amazing roasted mussels and a salad. Christen got the garlic meatloaf with garlic mashed potatoes and Swiss chard (I could have eaten all that Swiss chard on top of my meal -- fantastic!)
We stuck around in San Francisco for another day Tuesday waiting for my bag to show up. We hit Haight Ashbury, Coit Tower, Golden Gate Park (ahh, the tulips were gorgeous). Finally after coaxing and a bit of hysteria, my bag was found at the airport and we dropped by to get it before jetting up to Santa Rosa just before dark to check in. Dinner was at Outback because our desk clerk was less than helpful about finding a good place to eat and we didn't know the area, but it was still pretty tasty.
Day one in Santa Rosa was awesome. Just awesome. We started out at the Kendell-Jackson vineyard, but they didn't open until 10, so we found a diner for breakfast and drove around through the mountains and vineyards until open. KJ was great, and the wines were delish -- we had the reserve list, which are very limited and only available through the vineyard. Our wine pourer was very nice and pointed us to a few other vineyards.
Next stop was the Delouch vineyard. The wines there were wonderful (we bought a bottle) and the pourer was also very interesting. We then hit a sushi place called Sake-o in Healdsburg and it was wonderful -- I had a Mt. Fuji roll (smoked salmon, cucumbers and scallops) and a spider roll, and Christen had chicken teriyaki. After sustenance we hit Simi winery where we had a very interesting tour (though neither of us cared much for the wines) and wound our way through the countryside stopping at Robert Strong winery for a taste before hitting Kohl's for some new bras and socks (thank god!) and grabbing a burger at In & Out.
Anywho, off to bed (Christen's been asleep for about 2 hours). Up tomorrow: Old Faithful, more wine and maybe dinner at the Culinary Institute of America's Wine Spectator Graystone Restaurant. More to come!


Pictures soon!! We're sitting in the terminal waiting for our delayed flight. Life is good!!


Gettin' hitched on Sunday!

The last few days have been a little crazy, so I'm just going to say: I probably won't be around at all for the next two weeks. After all, I'm getting married!

Yesterday was the last of the running around like a chicken with my head cut off (excuse the tired cliche, I have no time to think up good ones). There was the tuxes and getting the groomscake and manicures and showing up late to my own rehearsal ... but everything turned out alright, and we had the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner last night, which means today should be a little less stressful. I simply have to finish picking up the house, finish packing, get my pedicure (the girls will be here at 8:30) a print and assemble 80 programs for the wedding. No sweat, right?

So I'll leave you with our engagement photo, and I'll be back mid-honeymoon for a quickie (update, I mean!) Toodles until then!!


A sad day for the literary world

Novelist Kurt Vonnegut dies at 84


Shades of melancholy

So now for a real post. Sort of.

I miss my writing. Dear friend Autumn got fantastic news that she will be the new EIC of Inkwell Journal. I've been perusing the photography and poetry of friend Brian and was awestruck by the beauty. I spent the day at work listening to Craig's stylings. And of all this, it hits me that it has been quite awhile since I've written anything of substance. I think often of writing; first lines meander through my mind while I'm cleaning or cooking or driving. I don't have the determination to continue through to the end. Perhaps after the wedding I will pick it back up. I do miss it so.

Woohoo! I'm out of work!


What's with today, today (my favorite movie from which to quote)

Today I've been working as if today was my last day.
That is to say, I'm either working like crazy or not at all. Your choice.

No, really I'm working like crazy because I'm trying to make sure that everything is done, so tomorrow, my real last day, I'm not hyperventilating from the amount of work I haven't done. I'm actually in very good shape, so there shouldn't be an issue. And now that I've said that, all shit shall hit the fan, yes?

But I'm taking a minute to blog, because I really don't know how much time I'll have over the next week to do so.

Friday night I decided to take the night off from worrying about wedding stuff, since things had been so intense throughout the week that I couldn't see straight. I spent an hour at Wilson's purusing books (I bought two: Vanity Fair, because I always like to pick up a book that I feel I should have read but haven't, which is not to say I will, and The Last Madam, about the underground brothels of New Orleans ... looks like a good read). I spent an hour at Theresa's, admiring her belly and talking wedding and baby nonsense while the puppies took turns fighting over my lap and giving me kisses that I semi-successfully fended off. I spent an hour on L's couch while she got ready to go out, admired the ivory fishnets w/ braided seams she was sporting (I could never get away with such things) and then we were off to downtown St. Pete for my last romp as a single woman. We met up with a lovely set of people, dined on Indian cuisine (I had never had before, but it was glorious), and drank at Indy, the Globe (Geri X was fantastic), Indy, Indy and Indy. Did I mention we hung out at Indy? After L and sis took off, Craig and I had a final drink and people-watching moment at The Lobby before he dropped me at my car and I meandered home in the wee hours of the morning.

Saturday we ran final wedding errands which included purchasing $65 of fake grapes and a can of spray adhesive ... not something you buy every day, right? My sister spent the night and we had the requisite few hours of drama before settling in, and subsequently missing sunrise service with the fam. Jamie and I caught up with them after breakfast, went grave hopping and back to Christen's nana's house for lunch and hours and hours of poker. I love poker days. We made a bit of money, though I don't know how much -- about $15-$20 maybe? And when bets are 10 cents to a quarter, that's a good day!


Not soon enough

10 more days to go until I am a happily married woman. I can't wait -- I'm so sick of prep work! This week has been hard, at work and afterward, because I've been working off a list to get everything done for the wedding so I don't have to worry. Work is crazy stressful because everything that comes in has to be worked pronto because Tuesday is my last day of work. Tonight I went over my mom's to get my hair dyed and she wasn't home so I crawled up in my brother's bed and took a nap while he played video games. I should be going to bed early, but I know it's not going to happen. Next week should be better because I'm spending all my time this week getting things together so I shouldn't have too much to do then.

Maybe I'll blog later when I'm not so beat.


How much drink could a woodchuck drink?

What a weekend! This weekend was my bachelorette party, and I had a fabulous time! Stacy, Shea and I met up at the Hyatt downtown where we had a beautiful room, and they adorned it with all sorts of crazy decorations. Then we met up with a bunch of people down at Spain, a tapas restaurant about a block from the hotel. It was amazing! There was flamenco dancing and tons of tapas to be had by all -- their goat cheese was the best I've ever tasted! Afterward we went back to the hotel for drinks and so they could adorn me with silly bachelorette-wear -- a tiara, veil, spinner button, a couple shot glasses and a sash (I disappointed them by cutting down to one shot glass and no sash, but it covered my cleavage! I couldn't have that!) and we headed down to Channelside. Mucho drinks, mucho fun! I drank far too much, but not so much that I was puking, so we were good! I'm certain that there are interesting pictures out there, but I've only seen one of them, which I'll have to post later. Shea, Shelley and I retired to the hotel room to read raunchy romance novels until we fell asleep, and then Sunday morning Shea and I laid out by the pool for a bit before heading home.

The boys had a crazy time too, I'm told, but likely not as fun -- they were nearly still passed out from partying when we got home around noon on Sunday, and Christen slept on and off all day while I helped my sister on a class project and fiddled around with wedding prep. Toodles!