Friday, July 8, 2016

My Visit to the Tar Heel State


Hello, dear friends.  A couple of weeks ago I flew to North Carolina to visit my #2 who is attending graduate school at Duke.  I had never had the pleasure of visiting the Tar Heel state before.  For all you North Carolina residents reading this, I have two words for you:  I'm jealous.  Although I have only experienced a small portion of North Carolina, I found it to be picturesque and the residents to be warm and friendly.



After picking me up at Raleigh/Durham's pristine airport, my #2 chose the Carolina Inn in Chapel Hill for brunch.





The food and service at the Carolina Inn were exemplary.




The next day, we walked through the Duke gardens to get to the campus.  







My photos do not give these gorgeous gardens justice.



For years, I have been seeing pictures of the Duke campus.  My Dad is a very proud Blue Devil.  Observing it in real life made me feel like I was on a movie set.  The buildings are breathtaking. 



Duke Chapel 



My girls are very different.  It's like pulling teeth to get my #2 to allow me to take a picture of her.  My #1, on the other hand, has traveled with full photo-ready make up and lighting since she was five years old.










My #2 is excited about attending a wedding in the Fall of one of her buddies from college in this Chapel.  I don't blame her.  Wish I was going.











I think that we were pretty close to visiting every Homegoods in the area.  This is another reason that I am envious of you people in North Carolina.  Look at the amount of stores in your area!

We found that the Homegoods located in the Apex area was the holy grail of Homegoods.


We also spent a lot of time at Southpoint Mall in Durham.  It is a treasure trove of great stores and restaurants.



Before my #2 left for college four years ago, we went to a pottery place to paint mugs for each other.  Before I arrived for the weekend, my #2 looked up a pottery place for us to visit.  Again, we painted coffee cups for each other.  She had such a good time, she even allowed another picture! 



We also went to see Me Before You.  We were two of five people in the theater.  We thought it was delightful and even shed a few tears.

I do have one comment though.  For anyone who saw the movie... were you at all distracted by Louisa's exaggerated facial expressions?  At times I felt her eyebrows took on a life of their own.




Yesterday, my #2's mug arrived in the mail.  This morning, I sipped my bittersweet cup of coffee and reminisced about that wonderful weekend I spent with my girl in the beautiful Tar Heel State.

****





FYI:  I'm taking some time off to refresh my supermodel trophy wife spirit.  It ain't easy, but somebody's gotta do it. 

Stay safe. 


Until next time...






Wednesday, July 6, 2016

A Hodgepodge Dinner Party

Good morning, dear friends.  I hope that your week is going smoothly.  If it's Wednesday, it's time for Hodgepodge.






1.  How did you welcome the month of July, and tell us one fun thing you did to celebrate the 4th. 






We had our friends Annie and Bob over for dinner.  The weather all weekend was nothing less than spectacular.




Attention: Security!
Uninvited guest on patio!
She looks hungry, too!
Meanwhile... Chow went to camp for the evening.





The Mister whipping up his magic.







For starters, we feasted on blackened tuna and strawberry tabouli.



And edamame hummus and pistachio and sumac.




Pesto and lemon chicken with arugula and fennel apple slaw.




Tomato bocconcini and olive leaves with a soy vinaigrette.




Zucchini ribbons with pink peppercorn, mint, parsley, and pinenuts.




And last but not least, grilled asparagus with peas, grilled corn, and cottage bacon.



A fabulous way to kick off the month of July.




2. Right now... what's your favorite red thing? White thing?  Blue thing?


If you don't mind, I'm doing a play on words here, and changing the word red to read.  I told you I was clever.

Anywho, I am knee deep in this delicious novel by Ramona Ausubel.  I haven't finished it yet, but so far so good. 



Collins Interiors
Pretty Pink Tulips

I have spent many hours over the long weekend looking for white bedding.





And it makes me happy to see my blue hydrangeas in my garden.



3. Wave the white flag, raise a red flag, fly your freak flag ... which 'flag' have you flown most recently?  Explain.





How about find the flag?





A certain someone who chooses to remain nameless likes to take the flags out of the planters and hide them.




Rumor has it... an accomplice is involved who has a thing for frisbees and balls.


She'll never find it here!







4. According to Conde Nast Traveler these are the seven best places to visit in July-



a boat safari in Botswanna's Okavango Delta, Riviera Maya Mexico (it's whale shark season and apparently you can swim with them), Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons, Pamploma Spain, St. Petersburg Russia, the Fuji Rock Festival at Mount Naeba Japan, the Salzburg Festival in Salzburg, Austria.


If time and money weren't factors would you want to see any or all of these?  Which would you most like to see and why?




I'd like to see the whale sharks in Mexico.  I'll take a pass on the swimming, though.  This one looks hungry.




5.  Grilled cheese, pimento cheese, or mac and cheese - your favorite from the cheesy treats listed? 




My favorite sandwich in the whole world is grilled cheese, bacon, and tomato. 


I still dream about the one I scarfed down with my BFF, Anne, at  South 5 Main in Cohasset.





6.  What makes you sweat?





Going to the doctor and getting weighed in.  
Why can't I find a doctor with an accurate scale?

I'm scheduled to go next week.



7.  Your favorite movie with a patriotic theme of some sort?




Great movie and it has nothing to do with Richard Gere's good looks.  Okay, it may have a little to do with that.



8.  Insert your own random thought here. 









One of my sweet readers, Susan, recommended Thrillest website to me.  

It describes itself as:


Thrillist is a leading men's digital lifestyle brand, providing all that's new, unknown or under-appreciated in food, drink, entertainment, nightlife, gadgets, and gear ...

I ended up soaking in this site for two hours.  I even signed up to receive daily emails, which I never do.  If you are moving or visiting a new city, I highly recommend this informative, entertaining site.

What are you reading these days ?

Until next time...




Chili:  Mom please tell me that I'm adopted and I am not genetically linked to Chowdah!

Chowdah:  Mom, I told her that we are identical twins!