Watson Wednesday

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Watson has been living the good life this week – being thoroughly spoiled rotten by his Aunt each day with lots of snuggles, Outlander and Stranger Things marathons on the couch and long walks around the neighborhood! Talk about living the sweet life!

HBD to My Fave!

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My little sister – lifelong best friend and partner in crime has been keeping me entertained and amused for twenty-seven years today! She burst onto the scene twenty-seven years ago and because she was so fierce, she and my Mom were released from the hospital in time for turkey day. Lindsey has continued that level of fierce for the past twenty-seven years…especially if it means getting some good food, ha-ha! I’m kidding.

I will be the first to admit that she had to grow on me – I distinctly remember being less than impressed by the screeching, red-faced little creature that my parents presented to me at the hospital and my Mom later found a posted defaced in my six year old scrawl with “Lindsey is an ugly baby…” Oops y’all – my bad. It’s an adjustment going from a solo act to a duo; it takes time and practice!

We’ve been through a lot – boyfriends and bad friends, proms and parties and more family vacations than I could count on both hands. There have been more than a few people I wanted to beat up on her behalf…but then again, she’s always held her own pretty well, so there wasn’t ever much need. One day I realized that the little kid who used to pester and perturb me had somehow grown up…and what’s more, she’d become my best friend.

I can’t think of another person I trust and love more at this point in my life than my sister – she is truly my best friend and having her as a sister makes my life more rich and wonderful than my six year old self would have ever imagined as I stared at that screeching baby twenty-seven years ago. So – I love you Lindsey and I hope you have a wonderful day – and you enjoy the birthday nap that you mentioned you were going to take! Ha-ha!

The Pre-Turkey Weekend

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Well – turkey day is just 72 hours away. Actually…at this point it might be less than 72 hours away, depending on what time you plan on eating your turkey! I don’t know..

What I do know is that it’s getting closer to 5:00 o’clock on Monday and this week is a short week, so I’m that much closer to a four day weekend – always a wonderful thing indeed!

Friday evening was spent laying low – dinner at a local Mexican restaurant with a salsa bar, cruising Aldi for some things to pad the groceries until the big Thanksgiving shopping session and doing a little laundry. After our Mexican feast, I decided that a little time spent on the elliptical would be good and so I even got in some exercise on Friday night!

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My sister’s flight from Vegas arrived at 4:30 in the morning – sheesh. My Dad was the saint that went over the river and through the woods to pick her up and the trip ended up taking longer than expected because Frontier Airlines “lost” 25 bags on a straight flight from Vegas to DC. While she did get her bag by the end of Saturday, Frontier Airlines won’t exactly be getting a ringing endorsement from us any time soon…

We all ate breakfast together and then went shopping – mostly because at this point we weren’t sure when Lindsey would get her bag and she needed actual clothes to wear. I picked up some new things at Loft and Old Navy; already having great sales ahead of Black Friday, I made sure to grab some things in the cream/burgundy family for a family photo shoot on Sunday afternoon. After scooping up some deals, Lindsey changed in the bathroom of Belk (ha-ha) and we headed off to have afternoon tea at one of our favorite places: Coach and Horses Tea Room!

 

The Afternoon Tea started with a delicious mushroom, leek and potato soup – I am NOT a mushroom fan – but this soup was absolutely to die for! So delicious, thick but not too rich and perfectly creamy! Next came peppermint scones with clotted cream and jam; the clotted cream brought out the taste of the peppermint in the scone just perfectly!

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The sweets and savories were too plentiful to list – meat pasties, a fruit tart, a butterscotch dessert – all so lovely and good! And one of my personal favorites – a perfect cucumber sandwich! I was positively stuffed once it was all said and done; but then again, I’m always stuffed when we have afternoon tea and I always walk out with a to-go container.

We spent Saturday night doing some Christmas decorating around the house and Lindsey and I went live in her online Perfectly Posh party to do some giveaways. It was a pretty chill evening and since two of the four people in the family had been up since early hours of the morning, everyone went to bed pretty early. I read for far too long before finally going to sleep…

Sunday morning I started the day with some coffee and the newest episode of Outlander before heading out to church and then some delicious brunch at Regions 117! We started with the Ginger Beignets and then I went with an old favorite in the French Toast smothered with fresh blueberries and cream, along with some peewee potatoes, which are just about one of the most heavenly things I’ve ever eaten!

We did a quick stop in at the house to do an outfit change and spruce up before going over to the Arboretum to have pictures made. As a Christmas gift for our parents, my younger sister and I decided to get a family friend to do a family picture session for my parents and so we had those done on Sunday afternoon! Of course, while the weather was pretty gorgeous it was also pretty cold and the wind was whipping around at about 20 mph for the entire shoot. No lie – at one point it began to sleet and flurry snow. It only lasted about five minutes but it was the first Winter weather of the season…and here we were without jackets, trying to smile and pretend we weren’t freezing.

Lindsey and I are – as I’ve mentioned on here more than once – big Outlander fans and as we were making the loop drive through the Arboretum on Sunday afternoon, I pointed out the standing stones and we had to get out of the car and take some pictures. And my Dad felt the need to be a part of all the silliness too…

We ended the weekend going to catch a showing of Murder on the Orient Express at the Alamo and well…I was honestly underwhelmed. I loved the book and with such a varied and talented cast, I really had high expectations for this movie – but it fell a little flat to me. Oh well! We made in home just in time for the season three finale of Poldark before crawling into bed.

Oh yeah – a sneak peek at our family pictures below – I can’t wait to see the rest!

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Five on Friday

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This week has been a real…delight. Honestly though – I’ve been trying to write this post for hours now and it’s almost 5:00 and so I’m trying to squeak this one out before I head out to start my weekend!

Five on Friday

One. Little Sister Time – My little sister AKA my best friend in the world is arriving home for almost ten whole days in the very early AM and I cannot wait! We have all kinds of good things planned for the week of Thanksgiving…but honestly; if we had nothing planned but sitting around together watching movies, we’d still have the best time!

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Two. Afternoon Tea – We will be having afternoon tea at one of our very favorite places on Saturday: The Coach and Horses Tea Room! I cannot recommend this little tea room enough – it is truly such a wonderful experience every single time! They have pages and pages of teas to choose from and you can try more than one (or two…or three…) teas and all of the food is homemade and absolutely divine! I’m drooling just thinking about it y’all! The picture below is from the last time I went – way back in January – and it was spectacular!

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Three. Family Pictures – It has been ages and ages since our family had professional pictures made and my Mom bemoans this fact from time to time…so my younger sister and I came up with an idea. We’d give our parents family pictures as a Christmas gift! A good family friend named Brooke takes the most gorgeous pictures and we are meeting up with her on Sunday afternoon at the Virginia State Arboretum to take pictures! Hopefully we won’t all turn blue in the process – the high is 45 and it’s supposed to be windy! Eek!

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Four. Murder on the Orient Express – I “read” this Agatha Christie novel for the first time earlier this year; I listened to it via Audible, read by Dan Stevens and thoroughly enjoyed it. Especially the twist at the end! Now the movie adaptation (not the first) has arrived on the big screen and we are planning to go see it on Sunday evening and I’m so looking forward to it! I hope that it will manage to capture some of the intrigue and suspense of the book…although I must admit, I normally find that the book is always better, ha-ha!

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Five. Thanksgiving Break – It’s less than a week away and I cannot wait! The past few weeks have seemed more hectic and tumultuous than usual and a few days off to spend time with family, eat good food and just relax sound absolutely divine! How is everyone spending their holiday this year? I’m happy to be staying in good ol’ Virginia to celebrate!

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Alright y’all – I’m off to start enjoying my weekend! I’ll be back on Monday!

In Ode to A Crazy Day

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Oh – this day you guys. This day. It has been a doozy and so I just thought I’d share…

I joined my Mom at Hobby Lobby for lunch; we perused the Christmas decorations (everything was 50% off) and with my recent discovery that I have way too many ornaments and way too little tree…well I found a 4.5 foot tree on sale for $29.99! It wasn’t one of those fancy pre-lit trees, but I have a 350 bulb string of lights at home that are begging to be wrapped around some faux branches…so I grabbed the ticket and headed for the check out!

The tree rang up a little over $31 with tax and I popped my card into the reader – and watched in abject horror as it said in big red letters: DECLINED. My worst nightmare…probably anyone’s worst nightmare…I hastily opened my banking app because I knew I should have had more than enough money in my bank account to purchase the little tree. The nightmare got worse – my bank account showed a $0.00 balance.

I hastily explained to the cashier that I was sorry but it appeared someone had made a fraudulent charge on my accounts and I’d have to get the tree another day because they’d wiped out my bank account. After a fevered call, I was able to get my card closed and the incident submitted to the fraud department – and I’d also been rendered broke. Thank goodness I already paid my bills…eek!

I returned to work after hastily picking up my Rapid Pick-Up from Panera (the last thing I bought with my card…) and the day seemed to just get more hectic as it went on! Around 2:00 our intern mentioned that the day had seemed stressful for everyone and he volunteered to make a Starbucks run for “real” coffee. He ever offered to pay for it, but we assured him going to pick it up was enough and we placed our orders.

He arrived at the Starbucks and noted that my co-worker’s drink was there but mine wasn’t. I called the Starbucks and inquired about the order; I was told if the order sits for too long before being picked up – they will throw it away – but they’ll make a new one at no cost. I explained that it seemed odd that my drink would get tossed but my co-workers wouldn’t – we’d ordered at the same time. I gave her our intern’s name and my order and she said she’d go have them remake the drink.

Then our intern called me to say that they couldn’t make my drink because they were out of peppermint syrup and would I like to order something else at no charge. I waved good-bye to my dreams of a Peppermint Mocha (who runs out of peppermint syrup?!?) and decided on a Toasted White Mocha. Our intern finally returned with our drinks; no surprise, he hit every red light between Starbucks and the office.

This day has been a little bit crazy – here’s hoping the evening is a little more calm! *sigh*

Musings on the Weekend…

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Well – somehow Monday always arrives right on time. I’d muse on that and how it’s likely a good thing since the alternative…well…you know… But sometimes I do wish there was a day in between Sunday and Monday – perhaps it could be called Funday and it would make the weekend just a bit longer? I can dream I suppose…

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My friends and I joke constantly that “Winter is coming”…mostly because we are nerds who watch too much Game of Thrones, but on Friday – Winter definitely came. We got out of work around 4:15 and I raced home to spend some time with my pup before heading to dinner and a movie – and y’all, I also needed to change in to much warmer clothes! The low on Friday night was 17 and by the time I left my house at 5:30 to go to the Alamo, it was brisk…and that’s putting it mildly!

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I joined my friend Jennie and her son Jimmy at the movies to see Thor: Ragnarok – I cannot recommend the movie enough, it was hilarious! It’s become something of a tradition for us to go see all the Marvel movies together; Time Hop reminded me earlier this week that the first week of November a year ago, we were all three watching Dr. Strange – so we kept the tradition alive. The movie was so good; plenty of action and heart, plus a lot more laughter than I was expecting.

After it was over, I went home and snuggled my puppy and watched some Stranger Things before calling it a night.

Saturday was essentially a completely lazy day – I mean; I did do laundry and started decorating for Christmas (no judgement) but beyond that, I really did a whole lot of nothing. I finished the second season of Stranger Things and started watching The Good Place. I felt like I needed to do…something…as the afternoon wore on and I knew that my dog would absolutely love taking a quick trip to the Arboretum!

The Virginia State Arboretum is a quick less than ten minute ride from our house and they have a huge grove of Gingko Biloba trees that turn an absolutely gorgeous gold and I’ve managed to catch them every year…but this year…not quite. However, the ground under the bare trees was carpeted in gold and that alone was pretty impressive in and of itself.

We wandered all over the area and I was amazed by how thick the leaves were. Watson could not believe that there were so many leaves to sniff and paw under and investigate and he was thoroughly intrigued by every minute of our exploration of the field of golden leaves…

The one thing he wasn’t as interested in? Taking pictures with me, ha-ha!

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We also drove over to Long Branch Plantation to check out the trees lining the driveway and noticed a wedding was being held – outside! I should mention; this was at 2:30 in the afternoon and it was only 34, the wedding hadn’t started yet…so I can’t imagine how chilly it might have been once that wedding got underway! Brrr!

We spent our evening taking some brisk strolls around the neighborhood and watching some movies on Netflix and Amazon Prime. It was nice to have a lazy Saturday after six weeks of having something to do and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute!

Sunday was another fairly relaxing day – I discovered that I have way too many Christmas ornaments, ha-ha! I spent most of the morning and early afternoon doing a lot of nothing – I’m still hunting for a church home and I’m not fond of visiting churches on my own.

Later on Sunday afternoon, I went to visit my friend Melissa and meet her new baby girl, Harper!

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I got plenty of wonderful baby snuggles and had such a good time catching up with Melissa. I even managed to coax a smile or two out or Harper before it was all said and done and after a couple hours of conversation and baby cuddles, I headed back home!

I ended my Sunday with a couple Outlander episodes, a burrito bowl for supper and the penultimate episode of Poldark before climbing into bed for the night! How do weekends always pass so quickly?