Friday, November 14, 2014

Breaking in the Tasting Room

On Veteran’s Day, Dan and I got to help our friends at Cardamon Family Vineyards break in their new tasting room! We are so excited for Chuck and Ana and very blessed to have them in our lives.

Chuck toasting the opening

Walking up to the tasting room, you will find little groups of tables and chairs where you can look out at the tree covered mountains. (or, as we were there in the evening, look up at the brilliant stars)

The new tasting room is warm and welcoming and has lots of natural beauty, which you can see in the colorful wood used in the floor, bar, and ceiling beams. Small, black metal tables and chairs are tucked into the corners of the room, and two leather love seats rest in the center of the room near a big TV that cycles through pictures of the vineyard, as well as Chuck and Ana’s travel adventures.

There were lots of delicious wines being served for the party. I had glasses of Cardamon’s Rkatz and Myshells from the whites, and I got to try Breaux’s Silk and a Spanish Crianza from the reds. Chuck had also saved Dan and I a bottle of his Cuvee Blanc as an anniversary gift. Mmm! Going with the spirit of the evening, we decided to have a glass right then and share some with the others in attendance.

Jax chilling with dad at the bar

Everyone enjoying the new tasting room!

Overall, it was a successful opening, and a very enjoyable evening. When you are out on Harper’s Ferry Road, be sure to stop at the Cardamon’s and relax in the new tasting room with some of their delicious wine. :)

All the wine was finished, but not quite all the milk. LOL

Thursday, November 13, 2014

My Top 5’s of Pregnancy

In case any of my readers have never been pregnant or been around many people who are pregnant, here are a few highlights of my experience.

- Enhanced sense of smell
- Feeling the baby move
- People are more eager to help me (even when I don’t need it)
- Baby shopping
- Seeing my baby on the sonograms

- Decreased energy
- Sore hips
- Calf cramps
- Food aversions (beef and bacon - which are things I normally love)
- Extra Bathroom Trips

Pregnancy Things That Made Me Laugh:
- Forgetting that I can’t fit in smaller spaces
- Feeling the baby have hiccups
- Watching the baby kick the dog or Dan when they would rest their faces on my belly
- Crazy hormones (suddenly being protective, the “oh I love everything” feeling, etc…)
- Random food cravings

Pregnancy Things I didn’t know, that I know now:
- Baby car seats expire, and they have to be replaced after a crash
- It is common to get nose bleeds during pregnancy
- Your skin gets super itchy as it expands
- The majority of women do not have their water break before going to the hospital
- All the aches and pains that come because of pregnancy

What I was looking forward to most post-pregnancy:
- Seeing baby Jax (duh)
- Sleeping without hip pain/calf cramps
- Doing an actual work out again
- No more food aversions
- Being able to travel again (once Jax is up for it)

Things have been great since Jax arrived. I did have crazy days when he would not stop crying, and I did break down in tears in the Kohl’s parking lot because I couldn’t find the PJs I wanted for Jax. However, overall, being a parent has been great.

The hip pain/calf cramps did go away, and I love bacon cheeseburgers again. Mmm! The work outs still haven’t happened yet, but I have learned that breast feeding (if you are able to do it) is a fantastic way to drop your baby weight quickly. :)

I am not someone who wishes they could always be pregnant, but I am glad that I had this experience. I learned a lot, had some laughs along the way, and got a cool little boy in the end.


Jax and I after he was born

Friday, November 7, 2014

A Room for Baby Jax

Way before we were even pregnant, Dan and I knew that we wanted to have a pirate-themed baby room – whether we had a boy or a girl. There were lots of reasons why we wanted this theme, but the most prevalent one was that pirate stuff is just down right cool.

As with most first-time parents, we went a wee bit overboard with decorations – it didn’t help that we are both creative, artistic people.

We started by painting the walls. One wall has a big mural, and the other three are a sprawling pirate map (complete with an “X marks the spot” and a compass). Then, we added furniture, pirate-themed mobile and curtains, and stuffed animals. Luckily, we had some help with the stuffed animals and other wall hangings, as our family is just as excited to buy things for our little munchkin as we are.

Here are some pictures of the final product!

PS: Did you spot the Batman signal? :)

Thursday, November 6, 2014

2014 Election Day

Election Day was always a sort of holiday in my family. We did not decorate or cook anything unique, but if my brother and I were lucky, we would get to go to the polling stations with our parents. I have many memories of getting to push a button or fill in a circle for one of my parents.

Voting day reminds me of the men and women (especially women) who fought for my right to vote. Rather than being a piece of property, I have a say in the administration of the country, state, town that I live in. It is an opportunity that I never want to squander and feel very strongly about.

This year was my first opportunity to include a child of my own in the voting process. Jax did not make it to the actual polling station with me (because I did not have time to pick him up before). However, I did tell him all about it when I got home, and I picked up an “I voted” sticker for him.

Here we are together, rocking our stickers.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Virginia Wine and Cider Under One Roof

Cobbler Mountain Cellars is a growing, family-owned vineyard that has a lot to offer its guests. While it started in the family’s basement, the vineyard now has large tasting room, with space for wine making, and room to keep growing.

Cobbler Mountain is set on the rolling hills of Virginia. It has lots of open fields where fire pits and Adirondack chairs rest in view of the grape vines, and the nearby woods and brook are used for special camping events in the fall.

Enjoying the beautiful grounds

Cobbler Mountain offers white, red, and dessert wines. Dan and I enjoy many of their red wines, especially their award-winning 2011 Meritage and 2010 Cab Sav. You will also experience something new with their dessert wines, which have a maple syrup flavor.

One of the unique things about Cobbler Mountain is that they also make varieties of hard cider. On this most recent trip, Dan and I got to sample the hops, honey, cinnamon, and pumpkin varieties. Our favorite was the cinnamon cider, and we bought bottles of the hops, cinnamon, and pumpkin.

If you are ever on the Route 66 wine trail, be sure to stop by Cobbler Mountain Cellars. :)