Thursday, July 5, 2012

Quarter of a century

Well, my friends know how to make a girl feel special on her birthday! Turning 25 is kind of a weird in-between age but having all of my friends celebrate with me helped pull me out of any possible funk. I'll split this up into days to make it easier to read!

On Thursday, we met our Charlotte friends at The Liberty. Right before we left, Connor gave me my presents. He couldn't find wrapping paper so Christmas paper worked :)
He got me an iPad! I love it! He also got me a grill for my car (mine fell out) and a 6-month subscription to Counter Culture (YUM). His parents got me the awesome coffee grinder off our registry. I LOVE it!
Here are Meredith & Mary. Love y'all! 
 Our group

Katie & Ben, my friends from High School that moved here just over a year ago
 Bryan & Kristen! Newlyweds!
Connor & Landon. Landon is an oldddd friend from wayyyy back. I've known him as long as I've been with Connor. He used to bartend at Coupe's!


Friday after work, Ryan, Landon, Connor, & I drove to Atlanta to stay with our friends Cameran & Kristina who moved a month ago. They live in Druid Hills and it is SO CLOSE to everything!

When we got in, we picked up Cam & Kristina then headed to Turner Field to watch the Braves play the Nationals. The sunset was incredible! 

 The fam. Wearing jeans was a bad idea. It was 100 degrees!
Awesome field!
We had GREAT tickets. We saw everything!
It was so hot that the only thing we all wanted was from the slushy machine. Love a souvenir cup!
We woke up and got ready to head to the Aquarium on Saturday morning. Saturday was my actual birthday!

The aquarium was AMAZING. I had heard so many great things about it, and it definitely lived up to the hype! It was 106 degrees that day so we were happy to be indoors, along with a million other people!
Lion fish

Freaky-looking sea dragons

Gorgeous jellyfish
THE TANK. Seriously this was incredible.
After we were done with the exhibits, we talked our way into the Dolphin Broadway show. It was silly and we rolled our eyes every time the guy sang, but the dolphins were so fun to watch!
We were famished by the time we left the aquarium, and, luckily, The (original) Varsity was 2 minutes away. My friend Lara came here a few months back and I knew I had to check it out. It was opened in 1928!!
About as many people here as there were at the Aquarium! It's ok, though. The counter was LOOOONG and I had my food within 10 minutes of walking in the door!

There are lots of places to sit, and we picked the old school style seating: Desks!

I ordered the 2 chili slaw dogs. I didn't need the onion rings, and was happy to share with K

Chili cheese fries!
After lunch, we headed back to the house to hang out and relax before dinner. We got ready and then went to Joe's on Juniper for a very special birthday drink.

We walked from Joe's to Empire State South (another recommendation from Lara). This is one of the best meals I have ever had! The restaurant was opened by Hugh Acheson, 4-time James Beard nominee, and he and the Executive Chef, Ryan Smith, have developed an incredible menu utilizing the south's greatest ingredients.
Our first course was house-made charcuterie. Top left was Sorghum Salami, pickled veg, chicken pate with honey gelee, mortadella, pepperoni, house mustards, and another thing I can't remember. This was served with grilled bread. The chicken liver pate was INCREDIBLE
We also ordered the "In Jars" app. These were Boiled Peanut Hummus, mustard deviled ham spread, pimento cheese w/ bacon marmalade, & trout mousse. Everything tasted divine! The picked veggies on both plates helped cut the richness. YUM.
This was my first course: Fresh Farm egg PERFECTLY poached over crispy Farro. Not sure how they did the Farro but it was seriously the BEST thing ordered. Everyone had a bite and wanted more! 
Connor ordered the heirloom tomato & peach salad with yogurt dressing. This was delicious and so fresh!

Not Pictured: My Entree: Pork loin over more farro (didn't realize) with shaved beets & ham, also with fennel fronds. I didn't eat this whole thing but it was SO yummy. 
Connor's entree: Lamb ribs. So rich and hearty!
Also, The DUCK. The duck stole the show.

After dinner, we headed back to the house where they surprised me with DIRT CAKE! Seriously y'all, dirt cake is my very favorite and I was honored that everyone pitched in to make it! I don't have any pictures from it because I was so surprised! Love my friends

We took an awesome cab back out that night, and our cabby had Michael Jackson videos playing! This was a screen shot of Thriller, the most epic one

We got up and headed over to the Flying Biscuit in Buckhead for brunch. One of Landon's friends met us as well.

I ordered the Fried Green Tomato BLT. It was just OK. The potatoes needed some help.

After brunch we made really great time back home (it took us about 3.5 hours with 1 stop for nabs).

I came home to a pile of birthday cards and more presents!

Thank you SO MUCH to everyone who helped me celebrate last weekend. I love you!


1 comment:

MaryHappily said...

Those nabs look delicious!!!! Looks like y'all had a great trip!