Monday, March 29, 2010

Thirty, Flirty and Thriving

It's official. I am thirty. It's a bit bizarre and I don't really feel like I could possibly be thirty already, but I am :-). To celebrate, we headed up to Carson City / Tahoe the day before my actual birthday. We stayed with Jason's mom Judi which was great! It's so relaxing spending time with her at her home, plus it was so much fun to watch her enjoy her grandson (and grand-dogs of course)!

On my birthday we got a leisurely start. The munchkin slept in, as usual, and then we had a nice breakfast cooked by Jason and then headed off to explore Virginia City, NV.

It was absolutely freezing so we bundled Eli in about 15 layers and strolled up and down the main street of town. We quickly realized that we were too early for the opening of the official "season" so many of the landmarks weren't open to the public yet, but we were able to see a beautiful Methodist church built in the late 1800's.

You wouldn't expect such a beautiful building in this little rough and tumble western town, so it was quite surprising when we walked through the front doors. I'm usually more a fan of Gothic architecture (might be why that was my focus in college!), but this was a wonderful mixture of the ornate and the simple. The interior was all in wood with beautiful carvings and exquisite stained glass. It was just an amazing beautiful and peaceful place to visit. That evening we had a DELICIOUS and relaxing birthday dinner at a little wine bar in Carson City. The food was amazing and the munchkin was wonderfully well behaved and all in all it was the perfect day :-)

We extended our celebration on Saturday, when Judi graciously volunteered to watch Eli (we really had to twist her arm ;-) and we headed off to South Lake Tahoe to have a date night! We had dinner at this wonderfully charming little restaurant, Cafe Fiore, recommended by Sarah. Thank you again Sarah!!

It only has seven tables which gives it an amazingly cozy and intimate feeling. The service was wonderful and the food was sooo good! We started with their homemade garlic bread which was scrumptious! If you like garlic, this is a must!
We each had a delicious pasta meal and shared a wonderful Cabernet, but I must say that the highlight of the meal was dessert! We shared their homemade white chocolate ice cream topped with fresh strawberries and blueberries. It's hard to put into words how delicious this dessert was. It's not super cold like regular ice cream and is much smoother, without that iciness that you often get with ice cream out of the freezer. It's not too sweet either which sometimes tends to happen with things labeled "white chocolate". In all honesty, it seemed like more of a complement to the fresh fruit that the main focus. If nothing else, we would return just to have dessert again, but we've decided that this will be a new regular spot for us when we are in the area.

After dinner we headed off to Apres Wine Bar to enjoy some wine tasting. Apres has enomatic tasting machines which was a new experience for both of us, but lots of fun! You purchase a card that you insert into different enomatic machines and then you can press a button and select which wines you would like to taste. The atmosphere was casual and fun and the bartender was extremely warm and helpful. Another spot we've added to our rotating itnerary!
All in all it was the perfect weekend away: food, wine, shopping and family! The thirties are off to a good start!

Monday, March 22, 2010


We had a great playdate with Katherine, Brian and baby Kaylin a few weeks ago. Kaylin and Elijah are so amazingly cute together. Kaylin always wants to hold his hand. We can't wait to watch these two grow up together!

Elijah and Dada

Kaylin and Elijah holding hands

He likes cute girls :-)

Elijah and Brian

Holding hands...again ;-)



Barrel Tasting

We had a wonderful weekend of Barrel Tasting in the Livermore wine country this past weekend. It was quite fun because we got to taste the wine straight out of the barrel. It's interesting to taste the wines in the process. The weather was absolutely GORGEOUS! Adam and his girlfriend Katy along with several of their friends came out to meet us on Saturday and join us in wine tasting. Our little Eli was quite the hit as well, both with Adam's friends and with everyone we saw at the wineries! He was so calm and well behaved; people kept commenting on how lucky we are to have such a little angel and we agreed with them whole heartedly! We started at Wente which always offers up delicious wines. We then went over to Les Chenes, a somewhat newer winery. The owners were quite friendly, but we weren't very impressed with the wines. After that we moved on to Big White House which had opened three barrels and was offering the rest of their wines out of the bottle. It was packed! The tasting room is very charming and it was interesting being able to talk to the winemaker about his different wines and how they were named. It turns out his sister is an artist and all of the wine labels were originally her paintings. Their 2006 Dolcetto was quite delicious :-) Tasting in Livermore is a lot of fun because all of the wineries are very close together and most are small and family run. We were able to hit about 5 wineries each day. The Barrel Tasting weekend also allowed us to visit wineries such as Wood Family which are not usually open to the public.

Jason, Adam, myself and Eli at Wood Family Vineyards
Wood Family Vineyards

Concannon Barrel Room

Concannon Barrel Room

Eli getting lunch at Big White House

Adam and Katy spent the night with us and after breakfast at a local diner out here, we headed back into wine country. It was another beautiful day. Eli was very happy to be able to ride all day in the back seat with Katy. I think he is in love! On Sunday we were able to go to several wineries that we had never visited before, which was quite a treat. We were particularly impressed with the people at Eckerty Winery. While it is a very, very small winery, the staff were incredibly friendly and helpful. We then headed over to Deer Ridge which had a delicious Moonstruck Reserve Red accompanied by some equally delicious chocolate cookies :-) We got to taste a couple of ports here, which are not usually my favorite, however out of the barrel they were not quite so sweet yet. We ended our weekend at my favorite Livermore winery - Page Mill. I love everything about Page Mill, from the tasting room to their delicious reds. Of course I couldn't leave without buying a bottle :-) All in all, it was a fantastic weekend! Can't wait for next year's barrel tasting weekend!

Mama's Day Out

A few weekends ago I had my first full day away from the baby. It was so nice to have a day to spend with my bestie Sarah and have some girl time. I will admit that I did miss my little man like crazy. It was an absolutely gorgeous day in the city. The sunshine was glorious with just the right amount of breeze to keep it cool. We started the day with tea at our favorite place - Lovejoy's Tea Room. We then headed down to Union Street for some strolling and shopping. Since we are both mamas, it was very nice to be able to have a few hours to just focus on ourselves. We ended the day with some delicious cupcakes from a little place on Union. I even brought some home for Jason! Quite a nice day.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Roly Poly

So we officially have a roller on our hands! Elijah was able to roll from his front to his back at two weeks, but now he is officially able to roll from his back to his front!! Very exciting. We had a preview of this a couple of weeks ago, but this time is for real! I woke up in the middle of the night last week and turned on the video monitor just to check on him and saw that he was laying on his tummy. I freaked out of course because all the experts say that babies should sleep on their backs. I went running into the nursery and flipped him on his back and he immediately flipped himself on his tummy! I couldn't believe it and was very excited, but of course I kept rolling him over until he stayed on his back. Now anytime we lay him down he doesn't stay in one place until he rolls himself up against something. The days of the baby staring where we left him are over! Before we know it, he'll be crawling! Our baby is growing so fast!

P.S. I do have a video of the rolling coming....

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Elijah's Baptism

On Sunday February 28th our little angel was baptized. It was one of the most special days of our lives. It was amazing having our family there to celebrate with us. The service was wonderful. Susan, our music director, allowed me to pick several pieces of music which meant a lot to us. Eli was so well behaved and didn't cry at all even when the water was placed on his head. He wore a beautiful christening gown that his Meme made. It was originally made for Jason, but wasn't finished in time or his christening, so Elijah had the honor of being the first one to wear it. Judi will stitch his initials in it, which we will also do for each child that wears it after him. It will mean so much to have such a lovely family heirloom to pass down the line. We are so very proud of our little man!

Eli and Alexa's first date :-)

Uncle BJ and Grandpa

Yummy cake - too bad little E didn't get to enjoy it!

Meme and Elijah in the beautiful Christening gown she made!


Grandma and Eli

So Blessed

I thank God every day for the blessing that he has put into our lives. I can't believe that this little bundle of magic has been given to us. Courtney recently sent me the link to a blog that reminded me just how incredibly blessed we are. Reading her story is heartbreaking and incredibly inspiring at the same time and just makes me want to kiss and hug my little man even more than I usually do. What really struck me is how she kept wanting to go back to the moment of her baby's birth. It really struck me, because that is the same thought that I often have. I would relive that moment over and over if I could. There are no words for the feeling of pushing that tiny life into the world and holding that little body for the first time. As I watch him grow and change every day it's so exciting to see his advances and the new things that he learns, but at the same time it breaks my heart to watch it go by so fast. I know in the blink of an eye he's going to be grown. I'm making sure to savor every single moment of this gift we've been given :-)

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