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ahhh.... The three day weekend is fantastic. DaveGrove is making breakfast right now! ...hashbrowns, eggs and sausage. He's the best!

I tried to sleep in yesterday... turned over to see what time it was. Thanks body for waking me up at 8:05. suck! .... I ended up just laying in bed watching TV for awhile. Did a little shopping....nothing major. Dave and I went out to dinner at McGilvery's to sit outside... unfortunately, all the outside tables were taken :( ... Rented Gone with the Wind... and chilled for the night. Dave's back is still about to kill him so we have to take it easy. I'm pretty sure he's out of the mini-marathon. ... I don't see how he'll make it now. We leave for Grandma Groves later today. Always a good time. We'll watch the Butler final four game there...have like 3 of her desserts and play apples to apples. Yes. Dave's Grandma owns apples to apples.
I just wanted to post that I'm still alive. Work, as I've said, is consuming my life. I'm liking it... really, it's just all new to me. I've never managed a staff before so this is very new to me.

We're sending the 'red book' copy of the album off today!!! I'm so excited to get it back. Just wait Lockstep: it happened in the city , is going to be a big hit. The release date is March 27th, that's a Saturday. We're doing an all-ages show and then the MEl in the same night. It'll be a blast, I really can't wait.

Nov. 24th, 2009

Ok ... so there's a delay. I'm moving my stuff today and IS/telcom will come to my offie tomorrow. They have to 'build' my computer b/c I'm getting a laptop! Sweet.

Dave and I went down to Bloomington on Saturday. Not for the IU/Purdue game... even though we did watch it at Bears. Yup ... We haev 2 pitches and then walked over to the MAC for the opera. We saw Die Zauberflote ...and it was awesome. Dave loved it. ... and of course it has one of my all time favorite arias... the one sung by the Queen of the Night. So yeah... beer + opera = fun for the Groves!

Savannah - Saturday and Sunday

Saturday
Sorrell-Weed House (1840) Of all the houses we visited, this one needed the most restoration. It’s still a work in progress really. However, the house was featured on HGTV's "If Walls Could Talk". Prior to and during the Civil War, General Sherman was entertained in the home, as well as General Robert E. Lee who became friends with the owner of the home. The house is reported to be quite haunted and there are actually ghost tours at night in the home. No thanks! The coolest (in my opinion) part of the tour included a letter from General Lee. Apparently he stayed in the home in the last days before the Confederacy made its surrender. The letter, a rough draft of his surrender at Appomattox, was found in a sealed box in the attic of home sometime in the 1980’s. The letter is on display!
Colonial Park Cemetery – served as the city’s burial ground from 1750-1853. It was really interesting to wander and try to read the headstones.
Andrew Low House – built in 1848 for a cotton merchant. It was later the home of Juliette Gordon Low, founder of the girl scouts of America!
Riverhouse - We wanted to have at least one dinner down at riverwalk. This was our opportunity to eat a deep-fried seafood extravaganza! …well Dave did anyway. …some sort of Fried Shrimp, scallop, oyster combo. I just went for ½ fried with scallops and steak. The food was alright… but the table was so cute. It was by the window overlooking the riverwalk. We had decided to dress up tonight for some reason too. I had read about it in a travel guide … I was determined to find a piano bar. We went to this place a little off the beaten path … definitely more of a locals hangout. A DUELING piano bar! (side note: if ever given the opportunity to make a deal with the devil … this is the skill I would want. To be able to play any song on demand and do it for a living!) We stayed for hours and left with our voices quite sore. We requested two songs. Mellencamp of course & one bourbon one scotch and one beer. It was so incredibly raunchy… we loved it. I wish there was something like it up here. It would probably take me 20 years to be able to do what they do.
Sunday –
Fort Pulaski – We went back out to Tybee Island for our last day because it was Confederate Sunday at Fort Pulaski. The fort was occupied and defended by the Condeferates in 1862. The Union Army used this battle as their first opportunity to test the first rifled cannon. This one battle all but rendered mason/brick fortifications obsolete. The Confederates felt very safe inside their forticiation with its 36 cannon guns and flanked by the Savannah River on both sides. Modern cannons would never be able to reach the fort. To their astonishment, the new rifled cannon fired a rifled projectile that could go farther (4–5 miles) than the larger and heavier smoothbore cannonball ( 1/2 mile.) This once thought “invincible” fort fell in just 30 hours. Once the Union took control of the fort, they made a lot of repairs. However, you can still see some of the projectiles still lodged in the walls of the fort. The fort truly was one of the keys to the Union victory. Savannah was not occupied until Sherman came just before Christmas in 1864. They didn’t need to waste the man power. Creating a blockade at the mouth of Savannah River was sufficient enough to cripple the city and the South.
Pirates House –
Ok. We had to do it. Kinda cool and also kinda Hokey. We know, shut up. Historically though.Legends tell that Pirates here would liquor-up unsuspecting sailors, take them under the house through a hidden passageway and on their ships. Before they knew it, they were enslaved to piracy! Suck, huh?
Dave had this Shrimp and Carb Au Gratin that I want to try and experiment with at home. I had Parmesan crusted Grouper with Asparagus and Horseradish mashed potates. I heart asparagus!
We wandered a little more for the evening … had a few drinks and called it a night. Our awesome Savannah vacation was over 

Savannah - Thursday and Friday

Thursday
Thursday was our day to head out to Tybee Island for a beach day. This was the hottest day of the week and it was totally warm enough to layout on the beach! Jen and Dave is swimsuit attire… uggg? Tybee was totally cute… It use to be a really hot destination spot back in like the 30-40’s … not so much anymore. Still cute though. After laying out we went to the Tybee lighthouse and climbed all the way to the top! 400 and something steps. Then, to top it off there was a wasp nest up on the observation deck. The picture I have from up there is dave hunched over dodging wasps and dealing with his new found vertigo. Dave immediately went back in and slammed the door. They have resident cats too. I thought it was funny how the cats were laying ON the exhibits. We can’t touch… but the cats can lay on whatever they want. Pretty cool.
For dinner we go to this place on Tybee called the Crab Shack – This place was made of awesome. Wood and sand floor with hanging basket lights, so cute! I mean really… any place that has tables with a trash cans built into the middle …you’re gonna have a good meal (expect joe’s crab shack, that place can go to hell) But yeah Dave got ½ lb. crab and ½ lb boiled shrimp. And I had Boiled Shrimp and Deviled Crab. I didn’t really like the deviled crab …but I tried something new. The waitress was sweet and took it off my bill.
Once we were back in Savannah we hit up a few places. Kevin Barry’s which always has live Irish music and this place called The Bar Bar. This place had free pool and $2 pints of this Paulaner Hefeweizen. I’ve just not seen it around here… but I wish I would!

Friday –
We decided on a big lunch instead today. We went to Mrs. Wilkes Boarding house. Everyone that was local kept telling us to skip Paula Deen and go to the boarding house. We are sooooo glad we did. It use to be a traditional boarding house with rooms back in the 1940’s. Now it strictly operates as a restaurant. It is only open Monday – Friday, 11am-2pm. We arrived at 10:30ish because we were told there would be a line. I’m glad we got there then because the line was already down the block! We just (just) missed the first seating. The restaurant and kitchen are in the basement of an old mansion. All the tables seat 8-12 people. There is no ordering as everyone gets the same food. However, the quantity and quality of food is unreal! We swore that more food was sneaking onto the table during dinner. I think I can remember what we had:
Fried Chicken, Beef Stew, BBQ Pork w/ Collard Green, snap beans, butter beans, black-eyed peas, Mac and Cheese, squash casserole, rice and gravy, mashed potatoes, sweet potato soufflé, okra and tomatoes, baked beans, cucumbers with onions and vinegar, creamed corn, turnips, biscuits, cornbread, cornbread dressing. Dessert: bread pudding or peach cobbler. Everyone was served sweet tea too. Man! We were so full we were reaching a food coma. We had to go back to our place to take a nap and digest.

After digestion, we went and did a little wine tasting and gift shopping. We went to a Tapas bar for dinner. ..something little. We tried the local She Crab Soup. Awesome. ... it's like chowder with potatoes and crab. hmmmmm.

We decided to go on a walking ghost tour on Friday night. Our tours had to be altered a little ...again, due to the film crew. We went by and heard the stories of several homes. What amazed me about Savannah as a whole is how much dead there is. Everytime the excavate something it seems like the dig up somebody. However... with so much war and disease ... it jsut happens. The weirdest story ...again about the civil war... as Sherman was advancing toward the city, people were worried about the loved ones buried at the cemetery. Afraid that the union soldiers woudl dig them up. They brought them home and buried them under the house or in the garden. You never know who's you'll find when you renovate or plant your garden.

After dinner we went back to Jinx. Down By Law was playing! How random is that!

Wednesday in Savannah

Wednesday was just another wander the city kinda day.
Mercer-Williams House – This is Jim William’s house in the book “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” …. We took the tour. However, don’t ask. They won’t answer any questions about the “incident” or anything that has to do with the book. We got the complete history and architecture of the house. Which I totally enjoyed! Our guide did mention “this is the room” … but if you weren’t paying attention you didn’t catch it.
Forsythe Park – We finally got down to see Forsythe Park. The fountain you see in famous Savannah pictures is here. It’s actually modeled after Place de le Concorde in Paris (which I’ve also seen in person!). We just sat there for awhile and soaked it in.
The highlight today was our cooking class. I signed us up for a low-country/southern cooking class at 700 Drayton Restaurant Cooking School. I learned so many things I will incorporate into my daily cooking. Chef Darin was the nicest and just most entertaining person. We had a blast. It was a small class with a lot of interaction. Dave and I learned how to clean and cook raw shrimp. Something I’ve always wanted to learn. I’m proudly no longer intimidated by shrimp! The entire menu included :Black Eyed Pea Salad, Cheddar & Chive Biscuits, Shrimp with Red Eye Gravy, Creamy Grits, Fried Green Tomatoes and Pecan Prailine Angel Food Cake. I totally loved the fried green tomatoes and the grits. We are going to be making grits again very soon!
So we head back to our apartment for awhile and just chill and have a few beers. We noticed a punk rock club earlier in the week that had Punk Rock Night Bingo! What a genius idea. Seriously, this was a blast. Bingo and drinking go very well together. Dave won a round too! ….well tied actually. The prize was a beer and a shot so the other girl chose the beer. …leaving Dave with the shot of Wild Turkey. Iggg.

Savannah - Monday and Tuesday

Monday

Up early to the airport, about miss getting our bags on the plane, watch a nun get frisked at security!

Our townhouse was called the Bird-Baldwin, located at 201 W. Liberty Street. We couldn’t have asked for a more perfect location. We were within walking distance of everything we wanted to do. Besides, Savannah is far more charming by foot than by car. The four-poster bed was to die for! I miss the bed …really. It also had beautiful heart pine floors and floor to ceiling windows. The house was built in 1838. The house was used by General Shermans' officers as their headquarters during the Siege of Savannah. That kind of freaked me out a bit but luckily we didn’t encounter an Civil War ghosts!

On our first outing we walked up to Orleans Square and noticed that half of the drive of the square was covered in dirt. It turns out that Robert Redford was filming his new movie! It’s called “The Conspirator” and it’s based on the true of Mary Surrat, the only woman charged as a co-conspirator in the assassination trial of Abraham Lincoln. It’s my understanding that most of the story takes place in Savannah. We kept running into the filming crew everywhere!
We mostly just wander around on our first night. We go down to River Street to see the sights : theTalmadge Bridge over the Savannah River, Paula Deen’s “Lady and Sons” restaurant and City Market. We went to a local brewery called “Moon River” and said “to heck with it, we’ll have the beer sampler!” They had this seasonal beer called the “The Tater Ale” …. An ale brewed with sweet potato and then served with crushed pumpkin seeds, cinnamon and sugar on the rim. De-lish!

We spent too much time wandering and drinking and we had completely forgotten to eat dinner. It was getting late and we just wanting something quick We stopped in at Vinnie Van Go-go’s (near our place) for some serious awesome pizza. I had a few beers and ciders.

Tuesday
We get up and have breakfast and stroll over to city market. We decide on the fly that we must take a horse drawn carriage tour. It was so nice to go an overview of the city at such a slow pace. We went to the Owens-Thomas that day. ...a super cool our house built in 1816. In 1825 the Marquis de Lafayette was a guest here and gave a speech to Savannah from the side balcony. The front entrance has two sets of curving stairs ... yes, it's pretty and creates symetery... however.... it was considered scandalous for men to see women's ankles in those days. So, one staircase was for men and the other for women in order to prevent such mishaps!

We also learned that around this time, getting a portrait done was quite expensive. Artists charged by the arms, hands and legs. You'll see alot of portraits with missing hands or only the bust. .... hence the term "It'll cost you an arm and a leg." ....not sure I quite believe that... but it's charming.

After that we went over to the Telfair Art Museum – The admission was included with our entrance at the Owens-Thomas House. a lot of Dutch art? Meh?

We decided to get spiffy and go our for a swanky dinner. Garibaldi’s Café
Dave had – Crispy Flounder – Diamond scored with apricot shallot sauce, spun pasta and veggie. (This seriously the best fish I’ve ever tasted.
I had – Crispy Duck – mushroom risotto and a sweet ginger soy sauce

This was probably the best meal we had while we were there. After dinner we walked next door to Molly McP . They almost 80 types of Scotch. So we got the sampler! Wa-hoo! Some were good. …. Some were bad. I particularly did not care for the one with the “seaweed” finish.

jen's wedding

We went to Jennifer's wedding this past weekend. It was gorgeous. a looooong day though. Dave and I went up on Friday afternoon. The highlight of the drive came when I saw a St. Bernard in a yard by the road and exclaimed "Is that a pony?" .... then then replied "no dummy, that's a St. Bernard. Haven't you ever seen Beethoven?" ... to which I replied. "Yes. I just thought Charles Grodin was tiny."

We arrived in Versailles to stay at our cute little country inn and then off to Russia (pronounced Ru-She) ....don't ask me why. The rehearsal went quick enough ... oh btw it was a Catholic wedding. so, Score, even though I was in the wedding, I got to sit the entire time!! The priest was very particular about things though. I get to met and walk with Dave down the aisle so that was fun. After the wedding, the entire wedding party... all 20 of us, got on a party bus and went for pictures then to a bar BEFORE the reception. ....I must say, there was ALOT of drinking involved. seriously... I would say that the grooms side drank for at least 12 hours straight if not longer. The reception was good. They served fried chicken and pot roast ....for real, up coming brides... take notes.

The town of Russia is like ..population 550-ish... the weddign reception probably had like 400 + people there. I was nuts! ... to boot, this ENTIRE town knows how to square dance and this aparently is the highlight of all thier social fuctions. So ... Dave and I had a few drinks and then attempted to square dance. I hope there are pictures of this somewhere. It was priceless.

Fun weekend. Now... to our vacation. We leave in 3 days! weeeeeeeee ... and I get to sees all kindas of friends tonight for the Johnny Socko reunion. I've been so sick I haven't even thought about it really. I need to get my excited going!

summer of 10dates wrap up ...

oh right... the 10 dates

1.) Warped Tour
2.) Walking w/ Dinosaurs
3.) Harry Potter
4.) Shakespeare in the Park
5.) Drum Corp Intl.
6.) Indiana Fever game
7.) Indianapolis Indians game
8.) Bonefish extravaganza
9.) Indianapolis Sympohny Orchestra
10.) massage - Dave got this for both of us for our anniversary, we gotta do that soon!

It was awesome and so much fun. Most of the things we did didn't cost very much. ..a few were free! It forced us out of the house more and it was great. We just get lazy sometimes and this was a great motivator. .... now, what to do for summer 2010?

musik!

We are going to see the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra tonight!!! sa-weet! It's opening night: A musical portrait of America.. I think Dave will like it.

Samuel Barber
Overture to The School for Scandal, Op. 5

Hoagy Carmichael
"Prayer and Cathedral Vision" from Johnny Appleseed Suite

John Williams
Air and Simple Gifts

Thomas Canning
Fantasy on a Hymn Tune

Aaron Copland
Lincoln Portrait

Leonard Bernstein
Divertimento for Orchestra

George Gershwin
Rhapsody in Blue

Aaron Copland
"Hoe Down" from Rodeo

I'm leaving work early to get all dolled up and have dinner on the town. This concludes "a summer of 10 dates"

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