Category Archives: Family

When Foodie Pen Pals Meet

During the winter, we made the decision to go to our favorite beach – Folly Beach, South Carolina.  Ideas were thrown around of where we should go on the way there and the way home.  We knew that we did not want to go to Gatlinburg because we have done that twice before so it was time for something new.  I mentioned Charlottesville, VA and Hershey, PA as possible destinations.  Hershey was quickly vetoed because it would take too long to get there and then too long to travel down. So we decided Charlottesville would be our destination.

When I was a teenager, my mom, sister, and I would travel down to Charlottesville via bus.  We would first go to Washington, D.C. and during our lay-over visit different historical sights.  I’m getting sidetracked fromh my story.

There were 3 things on my agenda for our visit to Charlottesville – Monticello, University of Virginia rotunda, and the pedestrian mall.  About a week before our trip, I emailed Jo.  Jo was my November Foodie Pen Pal.  We had exchanged emails about her motorcycle trip to Ohio and how much she loved Cincinnati style chili.  So I sent her a box with ingredients to make chili.

The reason I emailed her was because she lives in Charlottesville and as a foodie I needed the 4-1-1 on good places to eat there.  She offered to meet us at the pedestrian mall if we had time so she could give us a local’s perspective on great foods to eat.  I warned her about the Wee One and the Imaginative One because I don’t know if she wanted to spend a Friday evening with two elementary age children who had been stuck in a car for 7 hours and then walked around Monticello for 3 hours (almost actual times).  They could get a little squirrely.  She was okay with that so we met up.

She helped us find parking and even find Hawaii license plates.  The Wee One loves looking at license plates and yelling out the different states.  His goal was to find Hawaii and Alaska.  In the parking lot we parked in, there were 2 cars with Hawaii license plates.  Supposedly I owe him Legos because he found one of the rare license plates.

It was so much fun talking to her about foodie topics and other random topics such as running, walking to Monticello from her house, and where Dave Matthews had his first gig.  My Hubby even enjoyed talking to her and loved her accent because she is originally from Quebec.  She even showed us the Coke machine (doesn’t work) at Chap’s ice cream.  The boys loved the place they could draw and write their name in chalk.  They were not so happy about walking around but when you are 8 and 10, parents can make you do boring things.

Here are some pictures:

My travel bag

Today we are leaving for our big vacation. We are traveling to Charlottesville, Va for the night. Then we are traveling to Charleston, SC for the week. Then we are on to Atlanta, GA for 2 days and Huntsville, AL for a day before heading home.

I’m notorious for packing way too much food when we travel. I attempted not to have too much. We have the family snacks and then mine.

I’m going to talk about what I packed in my travel bag.


Snacks for me and Hubby (kids won’t touch them):
Trail mix (2 types)
Pistachio, cashew, and almond snack mix

Snacks for only me:
Wheat thins (small bags spicy buffalo and sundried tomato and basil)
Snack mix (walking taco flavored)
Homemade granola (breakfasts for the trip)
2 containers of individual creamers (for beach house – only thing I put in coffee)
Dentyne Ice gum (lots – love it)
2 go picnic – salami with cheese (lunches for this week)
2 go picnics – hummus (lunches for this week)
Freeze dried pineapple
Freeze dried mango
2 containers of random bars and peanut butter/almond butter packets – even though I don’t particularly like peanut butter)
Instant coffee
Fruit punch (1)

Other stuff:
Books (6)
Folders with puzzles and coloring pages for boys
Folder with puzzles for me
Mechanical pencils
My purse
My camera

Vegan Brownies

My husband has a cousin, J., who is a vegan.  We went to his hand fasting (another new experience for us) a year and a half ago.  The reception afterwards featured Indian food (another new experience for us) and vegan cupcakes.  We were pleasantly surprised on how yummy they were. Continue reading Vegan Brownies