Sunday, April 26, 2015

Our weekend

We celebrated our one and half anniversary this weekend!

We started with breakfast at the Metro Diner and loved sitting at the bar watching the short order cooks! It was Food Network come alive!

Then it was off to the Riverside Avondale Tour of Homes. That area of town is beautiful, upcoming and trendy and we enjoyed getting to see inside some of the lovely homes. 

Truth be told, we actually only liked 3 of the 12!  Some weren't updated and some were gaudy and over-decorated.  But we had so much fun dreaming and sharing the day together. 

One of the of oddest houses practically had a stuffed safari inside...including a REAL giraffe!

Saturday night we met Mom and Dad Brooks for what we had hoped would be a ballgame outing, but the weather and traffic were against us. But we enjoyed our Plan B of dinner and a stroll by the river.

This is a mirror mural under the Main Street Bridge!

Here's Chris with his mom...

Can't believe how fast time is flying...happy fractional anniversary to us (as our clever BIL dubbed it)!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Making take-out at home!

I tried a new Mongolian Beef recipe from Pinterest tonight and we loved it!

The recipe is a copycat of PF Changs but it also reminds me of my favorite spot back home, Mei Wei. I could live on Chinese food and it's so fun to learn to make it at home.

Find the recipe on my "Yummy" Pinterest board, or click here

Friday, April 17, 2015

Celebration Dinner

Michael invited all of us who helped him through tax season to a celebratory dinner at Restaurant Medure in Ponte Vedra last night. It's one of the froo-froo restaurants owned by the chef we do accounting and payroll for.

The restaurant is very modern and the food was delicious. We had a special menu that started with shared appitizers like dates wrapped in bacon, escargot and tuna tacos.

(I just ate the dates, btw!)

I was most excited for the house made pasta bowls that were shared bowls for the pasta course. 

(I'm going to start incorporating pasta courses at every meal!)

Caserecci/country ham/English peas/ spinach cream sauce

Tagliatelle/house made Italian sausage/roasted fennel/sun dried tomatoes/Parmesan sauce

Bucatini/pepperoni ricotta sauce/artichoke hearts/shaved pecorino

For dinner, Chris had Springer Mountin chicken, prosciutto mozzarella gratin and truffle spagehetti squash.

I had slow braised short ribs, Anson Mills grits, confit cipollini onions and glazed baby carrots. 

We are so thankful tax season's over!

(Even more thankful for a kind friend-boss who likes to celebrate!)

Save our Parks

I just heard that the state of Alabama is considering closing several of our state parks, including Joe Wheeler and Guntersville. These parks are too great a resource to lose!

My family spent a fabulous weekend at Joe Wheeler for Moma's birthday in 2012 and it was one of the best vacations we've ever had.

There was a sign at the park that said, "Don't just be proud of your state...get out and enjoy it."

Let's make sure we still can.  Click this link to sign a petition to let your voice be heard:

Saturday, April 11, 2015

One Spark

One Spark is the world's largest crowd-funding festival and it just happens to be in downtown Jacksonville! We went last night...mainly for the 30 food trucks!

So many many many lines...

But Chris decided on a gourmet grilled cheese and enjoyed it.

I adored my Filipino food...rice, chicken-on-a-stick and their version of an egg roll...

The most terrifying part of the night for me was the elevated tram ride back to the car. It was packed with people plus it's an ELEVATED TRAM. That last sentence gives me a panic attack just writing it! I squeezed my eyes shut and several times as it seemed to rock back and forth, prayed we'd live through it. Chris thinks I'm being too dramatic but he must not have seen as many Datelines as I have!

Needless to say, we survived.  At least pur "late-night-for-us" milkshakes at M Shack helped me calm down!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

My Peeps

The Forester-Hayes-Brooks clan converged on Barb's home at Camp Victory for Easter weekend and had a blast together!  I worked at Camp Victory the summers during college and then interned there the year after I graduated.  It just happens to be halfway between Jacksonville and Huntsville so it was a perfect place to spend a weekend together and with our sweet friend, too!

The weather couldn't have been more perfect so we enjoyed all the camp activities!  We felt like big kids!

In keeping with tradition, we dyed Easter eggs and saw a new artistic side of our guys.

Moma loved kickin' it with her peeps!

And of course we played a bunch of board games!  Telestrations is one of our favs!

The guys couldn't wait to paddle boat....aren't they cute?!!?

Then Moma and Abby joined and a brief game of chicken ensued.

So blessed...

On Easter morning we joined the community sunrise service at the lakefront...a beautiful way to celebrate the Resurrection.

Overall our weekend was beautiful and relaxing and a reminder of what a blessing the love of family is.  Sure do love my peeps!