Tuesday, March 24, 2009

welcome to the jungle

Well, not really. But after a year of living in our little apartment, searching for some greenery to liven up our living room, we found it! At IKEA, believe it or not. I had my first experience there this past weekend - and haven’t been able to stop thinking about it since. I think that when those Swedes came up with the business model for their store, they thought of a person EXACTLY like me and said “Hey, let’s make her a store.”

Anyway, at this beloved store, we found a six-foot Majestic Palm…for $12! It’s nestled in the corner of our living room now, greeting us with open arms. I’d like to say that we got out only spending $12, but there were other plants (and their pots) and a few table lamps and some containers and little kitchen utensils that I passed before we got to the checkout (genius, they are). Oh well, at least we have plants now.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

the charleston travelogue

(warning: lost post ahead!)
How was our anniversary? Absolutely perfect. The weather was wonderful - 75 degrees and sunny the entire time. Our hotel was in a great location, the food was awesome and we packed a TON of activities into three days! I think the best thing about the trip was that we were able to do it without thinking about all the things that have plagued us for the last few weeks. We saved and saved so that we could really enjoy it while we were there. It was so worth it to get away and relax and take a mental vacation!

Day 1:
We left just before 9am on Saturday morning, grabbed lunch on the road and made it into town about 2pm. We made great time. We checked in, put our bags away and then set out to explore. We spent hours wandering around the local neighborhoods, admiring the houses and peeking into the beautiful gardens. We decided to walk back toward the hotel to find somewhere to eat dinner, and ended up at AW Shucks. I got a tshirt to honor the meal where I had the most amazing crab legs I've ever tasted :)

The Vendue Inn

Day 2
Breakfast was included at our hotel, so we got up early Sunday morning (our anniversary!) to eat before the walking tour we had scheduled. I loved the room where we had breakfast - the white tablecloths, yellow walls, daisies and natural light made it such a happy room! And we were able to eat at the window that looked out over the street. We met our tour guide and found out that we were the only two for the tour. It was a great way to see the town. Because it was Sunday and most everyone was checking out, the only people out were the locals on their way to church.

After the tour, we grabbed quick lunch and walked to the waterfront park near our hotel. We spent about an hour on a bench, looking at the boats on the water and people-watching. It was so relaxing to sit in the sun and enjoy the view! We headed back to the hotel in time to watch the Carolina-Duke game (GO HEELS!) and then we got ready for dinner. We had an amazing meal at High Cotton to celebrate a great year, then we spent a few hours walking along the water before we could barely keep our eyes open and decided to turn in for the night!

Our breakfast nook

Scenes from our tour...

On the battery

Day 3
We got up early on Monday, packed up and headed to breakfast. The plan was the check out and leave our bags at the hotel until we were ready to leave town. We spent a little while at the waterfront park and then we walked around some of the neighborhoods in search of a home to tour. We found the Calhoun Mansion (24,000 square feet!) just in time for the next scheduled tour. It was beautiful! It's so amazing how detailed the architecture is of these houses.

After that tour, we had lunch outside at a restaurant that sits on the water. We even saw dolphins! I tried to get a picture, but my camera wasn't fast enough. After resting at lunch, we got the car to pick up our bags and hit the road. We decided to go out of the way a little and try to find an old plantation to tour on the way back to the interstate. We ended up at Drayton Hall, where I quickly became obsessed with the view of the grounds. It was breathtaking. We wandered around there for a few hours and the began to make the trek back to North Carolina.

The fountain at the waterfront park

Calhoun Mansion

Drayton Hall


I still can't believe how much fun we had. What a wonderful anniversary gift! And we hope you enjoyed the pictures - we enjoyed being there to take them :)

Friday, March 6, 2009

what a wonderful year

This time last year, I was enjoying dinner and bowling with my parents and Tyler. That's how I wanted to spend my time with them before things got crazy with manicures and out of town guests and nervous butterflies. I can't believe that Sunday will be a year since we got married!

It was such a perfect day for both of us and for days after the wedding, we kept saying "I can't believe how fun that was." It was completely flawless; we were celebrating something awesome with our favorite family and friends. Everyone we love was in one room enjoying the day with us. I really couldn't have asked for anything different.

I must say, one of my favorite memories is singing the alma mater/fight song in the lobby of the hotel after we watched Carolina beat Duke. The blues match up AGAIN on the 8th, and we're hoping that our getting married on that day will mean good luck for the Tar Heels again this time around!

Happy Anniversary, sweet love. Thanks for an amazing year.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

update: anniversary trip location revealed!

It looks like I spoke too soon about this trip being top secret! When Andrew picked me up from work yesterday, I asked him how was day was. He was busy changing lanes and said, "It was good. I did a lot of research for Charlest---." We both looked at each other with wide eyes and he burst into laughter. After all of that trouble that he put in hiding it, it came out with one little slip of the tongue! Needless to say, we thought it was hilarious. He told me everything he has planned and it sounds perfect. And the weather should be amazing. I can't wait!

Monday, March 2, 2009

a snowy spring start

March arrived this weekend with a wintry mix in our neck of the woods. I was hoping it would be enough to stay home from work so that Andrew and I could have a 24 marathon (our latest addiction), but alas I'm watching the snow fall from my office window. It's hard to believe that it's the first week in March and the ground is covered with snow, when it's supposed to be in the 70s this weekend. Welcome to North Carolina, folks.

Speaking of this weekend - Andrew and I will be celebrating our one year anniversary in a top secret location. It's only top secret because it's a surprise to me. I'm anxious to find out and it looks like the weather in the southeast is going to be perfect this weekend. (Of course, I don't know that we're going to stay in this region of the country, but I do know that it will be warm wherever we go and we can only go so far on our budget.) I'm so excited, I can't hardly stand it! All I know is that I already dug my flip flops out of the back of my closet!

In the meantime, I guess I'll have to settle for these wool-lined boots...
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