Thursday after work last week we packed up the car, dropped Indie off at the vet for boarding (saddest moments for us as fur-parents but Forest said Indie trotted off with the guy like it was the best day ever and didn’t even look back to see if Forest was following!) and headed off to visit our friend Rachele in Charlottesville, VA for the weekend.
Peyton ate dinner on the road (a puree pouch + puffs), we stopped at 7:30 pm (her normal time to nurse and head to bed) and we got to Rachele’s around 12:30 am. Our plan was to pop open the pack-n-play and transfer a SLEEPING Peyton from the car seat to the pack-n-play. Well we all know what happens when you plan for easy transitions like that! Peyton was wide awake when Forest tried to transfer her and all of my attempts to rock her back to sleep were thwarted until she FINALLY gave in around 3:00 am.
Friday morning we were all up and, after Forest made a yummy waffle breakfast, we headed to a peach orchard/strawberry field to pick strawberries. Fresh strawberries taste much better than grocery store strawberries, by the way. Forest picked up a jar of peach butter for us to bring home.
We followed strawberry picking up with Bold Rock Cider Barn for some hard cider, the best-ever soft pretzels, and an incredible view.
^photo courtesy Rachele
Rachele took us to the popular restaurant Citizen Burger. My mouth is watering just thinking about that burger! Grass-fed and local beef, which is a common theme for most places in Charlottesville – almost everywhere we visited served local food and supporting local businesses was very encouraged. And we walked around the outdoor mall area, down to a free concert, and headed back to Rachele’s place in time for Peyton’s bedtime. We ended the night making strawberry shortcake with some of the strawberries we had picked.
Saturday morning we had NJ bagels for breakfast and headed to a pop-up market – local business set up tents and tables selling goods ranging from greeting cards and jewelry to souvenirs and fruits, veggies, eggs and beef. And there were several food tents as well!
We spent a couple hours there and then headed up to Thomas Jeffereson’s Monticello. We walked around the museum and watched a 20 minute video about him and his home. We didn’t go up to his house because the weather kept calling for rain but on our way to lunch, Rachele took us to an apple orchard on the top of a mountain for beautiful views!
Lunch was at Mellow Mushroom Pizza, across the street from where Rachele works on UVA campus. It was by far my favorite spot we ate. We each picked a different personal pizza and shared with everyone else – buffalo chicken, meat lovers and bbq chicken. So.good.
^photo courtesy Rachele
We made our way back to the car (1/2 a block away) in the rain – Peyton loved my fast-walking – she was cracking up as I tried to keep the rain off of her face – and back to Rachele’s where we took it easy until dinner time. Naps were in order for most of us so we took advantage of a rainy afternoon and did just that!
Dinner was at a cool place where we played Jenga at our table while we waited for, ate, and after we finished our food. Peyton was flirting big time with a guy sitting a few tables over. He was a smiiiiidge too old for her but she flashed her sweet potato grin at him for a while. And then it was back to Rachele’s for Peyton’s bedtime.
After Peyton was asleep, Rachele and I tackled making a homemade cheesecake with strawberry topping. Forest had warned us earlier in the day that we needed to make it sooner rather than later so we wouldn’t be eating it for breakfast. We didn’t listen, obviously, and after the cheesecake baked in the oven for 55 minutes it was already 9:30 and it still had to cool in the fridge for 4 hours. Oops. So the next morning Rachele and I enjoyed piece of cheesecake with fresh strawberry topping for breakfast! Delicious!!! It was the first time making a cheesecake from scratch for both of us and we nailed it!
We left Rachele’s place Sunday after cheesecake breakfast and headed straight for Baltimore for a 1:30 Oriole’s game vs Detroit Tigers. We made it to a parking garage at 1:00, bought tickets at the gate, picked up a ‘My first Oriole’s game’ certificate for Peyton, grabbed a quick lunch (chicken fingers and fries!) and headed to our seats. We actually had really good seats! We were on the lowest level, on the aisle and right next to the stairs so nobody was able to block our view! Peyton loved watching and waving to everyone sitting around us. And she clapped every time she heard cheers! She took a nap in Forest’s lap somewhere around the 5th inning. Dada woke her up when he got excited about a home run but Peyton was back into clapping and waving again!
We left the game after the 7th inning stretch; it was about 4:30. We grabbed Wendy’s for dinner around 6:00, Peyton ate another puree pouch and yogurt and we made it home around 8:30. Peyton had been in the car for a while so we let her crawl around and get some energy out before bedtime, 1.5 hours later than normal!
We had such a fun weekend! It was short and we had a lot packed in there but getting away for a long weekend was really nice! Monday morning came too soon and with it a to-do list a mile long! Unpacking, grocery shopping, laundry, cleaning, mowing the grass, etc. Forest picked up Indie first thing yesterday morning and he said she was looking for me when they got home. Melts my heart! I was SO excited to see her after work! Peyton was excited to see her again too! She even fed Indie from her high chair during dinner. She handed Indie a couple pieces of green beans! Those two… they’re trouble I tell ya!
Thank you, Rachele, for letting us visit and for chauffeuring us around Charlottesville! We had so much fun and can’t wait to see you again soon!
Until next time — Cindy
*All images are original to A View from the Shore