Last Thursday, I was lucky enough to arrive in Pittsburgh on Erin's real, actual birthday. It's virtually impossible to plan seeing an out-of-town friend on their birthday - but we were rolling through town just on chance! I arrived just in time to get a tasty honeydew margarita with Erin and her fiance (ooohhhh- kissy kissy!) Rob at Mad Mex. I do miss me some Mad Mex.
Onto the scenic drive into Virginia to the wedding at Veritas Vineyards. We were kindly invited to a dinner the night before at Michie Tavern , where we feasted on fried chicken, mashed potatoes, beets, black-eyed peas, peach cobbler and ice cream. It was pretty fascinating to be inside a well-preserved historic tavern, although we did discover some horrific drawings hanging on the wall. Without getting too detailed, the drawings depicted some colonial sexual assault and then betrothment? It was weird.
The wedding itself was stunning. I'm beginning to think there isn't a better backdrop to anything than a vineyard, let alone the tranquility of a wedding ceremony. (Okay, beaches are awesome too.) The food was amazing - it's not often to find a fantastically fresh salad in any banquet situation! Kudos, Diana and Jared! I only wish that bringing our three well-dressed children to a party with family meant that we actually got to spend more time catching up with said family. From attempting to take pictures, to running Jackson into the bathroom every time he announced he had to go (we are faltering at potty training, so we'll run anytime he says he has to use the real bathroom), to feeding Elliot and finding a wandering Ayla - the night sped by too quickly.
|Ayla sat at the grown-up kids table! What a little lady.|
|Heartbreaker. He's wearing the "tie" shirt under that blazer!|
|Passed out by 9 pm. Jackson has a hard time even falling asleep in the car, so this surprised me.|
|A happy bride and groom!|
|Dinner companions - so what if we had the rowdiest table?|
We then returned to Pittsburgh for a graduation celebration for Genevieve. Woo hoo! "Quaker Valley" graduate! I'm sad to say we didn't pull out the camera that night until the unveiling of the cake.... sorry, Genevieve! But congratulations, we can't wait to visit you at college and tease you in front of your new friends! "Guys, stop teasing him!"
|Luscious... and it was MY job to cut this bad boy!|
|"It's so much cake I can't handle it!"|
The timing for our trip was a perfect segway into the somewhat lazy summer days ahead of us. (Lazy for the kids, almost ulcer inducing for me.) I really loved seeing so many of our friends and family back in Pittsburgh, for even a few hours. It was very surreal to be less than a minute's drive from our old house and not be able to stay there. I'm realizing now that it was relatively easy, at least psychologically, to slink away from "home" in the dead of winter, rather than in the beautiful, green, energized power of summer.
Alas, these are the kinds of weekends where you do a fair amount of looking backwards (old gardens, old neighbors, old familiarities) and realizing what the future can be (new marriages, another year of children growing, new jobs and cities).