Tag Archives: Friends

New York Bound – Day 2

7 Jul

Day 2 of our New York trip was the one I was most looking forward to — wine tasting on Eastern Long Island with my friend Ally! Ally and I went to the same high school AND college but didn’t meet until we were placed in the same apartment while studying abroad in Florence, Italy in 2009.  This is us in front of our favorite bridge in the WORLD the Ponte Vecchio:

Ponte Vecchio!

Ponte Vecchio!

 

and a pic of us in Sicily!

Circa 2009

Circa 2009

Well many years have passed since we traveled Europe together but we finally reunited for the first time in nearly three years for wine tasting on LI! Wes and I also stayed with Ally and her fiance, Chris, at their brand new home – we were their first ever guests! So exciting.

Before meeting up with them at their home, I HAD to take Wes to my favorite deli in the world – the one I ate at literally every single day (my dad jokes that we bought the owner his hummer) called se-port. I am so upset that I did not take a single picture of Wes devouring his first se-port sandwich (no he didn’t get a boone – I ordered him an American hero with mac salad because he wanted something cold).  I was so busy chatting with all the se-port guys I totally forgot to snap some pics – they all remembered me even though I’ve been gone for 4 years! So exciting 🙂

So after our se-port run and a quick drive through my old home – we met up with Ally and Chris and their new puppy Brewster! Then we headed out east to Martha Clara vineyard for a few bottles of wine, some snacks and a little world cup action – Brazil was playing that afternoon and Chris is half Brazilian so we had to keep an eye on the score!

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We tried two different white wines and they were both fabulous. I know everyone raves about wine from the Napa Valley – but Long Island can definitely hold their own in the vinosphere (hahaha get it???)

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Martha Clara also had a little farm and corn hole boards set up! Which we ended up never playing because we were so focused on our fresh guacamole and local wine.

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We had plans to stop by two other vineyards but we ended up loving the atmosphere at Martha Clara  so much we decided to forgo the other two and just enjoy the afternoon there! We also wanted to head back to Port Jefferson before the sun set so we could show Wes the water and get ice cream at my favorite ice cream shop called Snow White and The Seven Flavors — which apparently Ally and I are the only ones that know that’s the actual name of the place

2014!

2014!

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After our Port Jeff rendezvous we met up with my brother for some drinks and food and then headed back to Ally and Chris’ to play with little Brewster! He was only 8 weeks old so we had to head back to our little baby – I can’t believe I don’t have any pics of him either! I’m a terrible blogger

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I am already missing my friend so much – but we are trying to make plans for them to come visit Raleigh for Labor day! So i’m crossing my fingers that I’ll be able to show them all around Raleigh and bring them on the Green Machine Raleigh Brew Tour!

Thanks Ally and Chris for a wonderful Long Island themed night! I love you!!! ❤

Chris and Wes "not posing"

Chris and Wes “not posing”

Panthers vs. Buccaneers – I guess that makes me a football… fan?

5 Dec

So I know its been awhile since my last post but if you want me to be honest with you its kind of hard to stay committed to something when it takes a lot of time but you don’t get paid for it. But since I now know I have at least one person who is a fan of my writing I am going to persevere as best I can to please the masses. With that being said, last weekend Wes and I went to my very first Panthers game in Charlotte! My friend Marissa and her fiance, also Wes (hehehe) came with us! Apparently I was the only one who wasn’t really a follower of football games, I didn’t think Marissa was that into football but when we got in the van she starts naming all these players and dropping stats and totally left me out there in the dark with the rest of the female population who couldn’t really give a rats behind about football. But anywho,  I’m so proud I have a friend who can talk to my boyfriend about football so I don’t have to! Thanks Marissa!

Sold Out Stadium

Sold Out Stadium

So we started the day leaving Raleigh at 8am to get to Charlotte by 11. Of course Marissa and her Wes were totally prepared with breakfast, coffee, 5 bottles of champagne, orange juice and panthers cups to drink our mimosas in. Me and my Wes showed up hungry, thirsty, tired and cold looking like a mess and completely unprepared for anything. Figures! i’ve decided to make my New Years resolutions 1. to be more prepared for fun events and 2. to wake up earlier everyday 3. to not be such a mess. Easy enough, right?

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Looking all cute in her Panthers gear

The one thing we did do right was get to Charlotte a little early so we had time to stop at a bar for some food and drinks.. we ate at a cute little Irish pub, where the two Wesley’s were bribing the waitress to serve us beer before 12. The game started at 1 so after eating we briskly walked to the stadium with plenty of time to spare. Until I was told that my bag was too big to be brought into the stadium. of course I would be the one to not realize they had bag requirements! Luckily darry and the van were only 5 minutes away so I was able to drop my stuff off and run back towards security! After waiting on a ridiculous line we finally made it into the arena and to our seats! We were in the nosebleeds but we got out tickets for $32 — can’t beat that.

Panthers1Even though watching football on TV isn’t my favorite activity.. I LOVE going to the games. The energy, the crazy fans, the beer, the NACHOS. Its all great! When we got to our seats we realized we were seated right in front of 4 psychotic fans.. they were great don’t get me wrong but apparently we were one of the only people who found them amusing. (Now that I think of it I’m pissed I didn’t get a picture with them!). They all had tattoos and gauges in their ears and were probably mid 30s, large and in charge men. They were drinking and screaming and making fun of every single person in their line of sight. I found them hilarious but the girls next to me didn’t agree.. a few words were exchanged but in the end no one got punched in the face so it was a success! I considered the events double the entertainment value. The Panthers ending up having a great game and beat the buc’s 27 – 6 which brought the Panthers to their 8th consecutive win! Not too shabby if I say so myself.. GO PANTHERS! I think I picked a good year to become a Panthers fan, and I’m pretty sure this is the reason they’ve been winning. You’re welcome Cam.

panthers4All in all we had an amazing day with our friends watching our team win! And it worked out for me in the end because Wes bought me the cutest little Panthers hat with a pom pom on it to celebrate our victory.. woo hoo!!!

 

 

A surprise visit to Toronto, Ontario

24 Oct

This past weekend I was granted the pleasure of surprising one of my friends, Laura Aloise, in Toronto, Ontario (In case you weren’t sure, yes, that’s in Canada). She is currently living there after moving from Florence, Italy where we met!

Little piece of the Toronto skyline

Little piece of the Toronto skyline

Let me do a quick recap of how this all came together. A few weeks ago, Laura’s boyfriend Mikey found me on Facebook and asked me to help him plan a surprise for his beautiful girlfriend. At first, the plan was for him to send Laura down to me in Raleigh so she could have a little getaway, but after some deliberation we decided that it would be nearly impossible to pull that off since she would eventually have to find out where she was going. Example, you can’t just force someone to go through customs at the airport and get on an airplane bound to God knows where with them blindfolded. It just wouldn’t work. So we changed the plan to me flying to Toronto to surprise her! Makes much more sense.

Mikey was suppose to pick me up from the airport, bring me to their apartment, then wait in silence until she arrived totally unsuspecting. But when I landed Mikey surprised me with a giant stretch limo and a driver! Very fancy.

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A few hours later Mikey and I were anxiously waiting with glasses of champagne to hear Laura’s footsteps down the hall. Our plan when she opened the door was to jump out and and attack her like female fight club (Bridesmaids anyone?) but we ditched that plan at the last minute for lots of hugs and champagne toasts!

Champagne Toasts!

Champagne Toasts!

When she opened the door and saw me standing there she screamed like a hyena then became utterly confused and said “wait, I don’t understand, how did you get here??” and I responded, “an airplane and a stretch limo brought me!”

Fresh juice at fresh!

Fresh juice at fresh!

 

We spent the remainder of our weekend basically just stuffing our faces. The food in Toronto is utterly divine. Our favorite restaurant is a vegan/vegetarian place called Fresh that we ate at twice in 2 days. Everything is local, organic, vegan and delicious! Our first trip I had the world’s greatest veggie burger and a fresh juice, (Apple, carrot and coconut water) and the second day I had a vegan breakfast made up of a tofu scramble, toast, baked beans and hash browns. Yummmyyy!!

 

 

 

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My second favorite restaurant was an Italian place called Ciao that had amazing Gnocchi! I had it with a fresh tomato sauce instead of the Gorgonzola and I devoured the entire thing in seconds.

After a weekend of lots of eating, drinking, shopping and talking we woke up to Monday morning when I was scheduled to return back to the States. I had such a great weekend with Laura and her wonderful boyfriend Mikey! I can’t believe its been almost a year and a half since she left me in Florence…

 

As for Toronto, its a beautiful city with amazing restaurants. It reminded me a lot of NYC, which also reminded me that I am definitely not a city person. I love visiting them but I am so happy to be back home in Raleigh, with my car and my fried food! hehehe

 

Dundas Sqaure, Toronto

Dundas Sqaure, Toronto

Just in case anyone plans on visiting Toronto soon the addresses of my too fav restaurants are below:

Fresh: 894 QUEEN STREET WEST

Ciao: 133 Yorkville Ave.

Ending note: Canadian money is plastic and un-rippable… how genius is that??

Did you know Canada shares Queen Elizabeth with England?? She loves being on their money!

Did you know Canada shares Queen Elizabeth with England?? She loves being on their money!