Just over a month ago, I got to spend a long weekend away with my blogging girlfriends in Connecticut. Since this was my first time being away from Clara, I was absolutely terrified of leaving. It’s not that I doubt Eric’s parenting skills (please, he’s amazing), it’s just that I was worried about being away from her for that long. Up until this trip, I had spent every day since she was born with her. Of course Clara was fine, and we even got to FaceTime while I was gone. She and Eric had a lovely weekend, and she didn’t seem to mind at all that I had been gone.
This trip had been in the works since February, back when I was surprised to find Annie, Josie and Tara here in Richmond. We knew we had to get together again, this time with Elly, and it just so happened that Tara’s house was the perfect place to do it. She invited us all, plane tickets were bought and plans were made. It’s hard to succinctly describe the weekend because it was almost indescribable. Just like when they visited me earlier this year, it was almost surreal. This is what blogging is truly about – the people met and friendships made. These are some of my best friends, and I hate that we live so far apart. Even though we text and email daily, it’s not the same as being able to cook a meal together or share a laugh at something ridiculous online. I absolutely treasure the time we get to spend together, even if it isn’t as often as we’d like.
We all flew in Thursday night, and I was so excited to be able to wait at the gate for Annie and Josie to arrive because people never get to do that anymore. I curled up in the nearly-empty terminal and finished reading Divergent, which I had only just started when I left Virginia (if you like dystopian novels, you must check this one out!). As soon as I saw them coming off the plane, it was like no time had passed since we last saw each other. Once Elly arrived and we made it to Tara’s house, we stayed up way too late catching up. This is par for the course for us, and thankfully Tara had plenty of coffee for us to drink the next morning. For Friday morning breakfast, Tara took us to one of her favorite local spots, Leo’s, where I tried hollandaise for the first time. I have the hardest time deciding between sweet and savory for breakfast (please tell me I’m not the only one), but thankfully Josie got a waffle topped with pumpkin cannoli filling and shared some with me. It was the perfect start to our day. That night, Tara drove us to the Hudson Valley area of New York, and we had dinner at Taste in Buchanan. We shared a cheese platter that had the most amazing blueberry honey, and I had Stella battered lobster tails as my entrée. After dinner, we went to The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze and got to see thousands of illuminated pumpkins. On our hunt for post-pumpkin blaze dessert, we stumbled across Sleepy Hollow. I love that story, and I love the Johnny Depp film too, so you can guess how excited I was when we randomly found the area. After being touristy and taking a picture with the sign, we continued on our dessert quest until we came across a frozen yogurt/crepe shop. After dessert, we went back to Tara’s and again stayed up way too late chatting (do you see a theme here?).
Saturday, we went to Cupcake Camp New Haven, and had a healthy lunch of pizza and cupcakes. The variety of flavors was insane, and this is coming from someone that worked in a cupcake shop. We taste-tested as many as we could before stopping for lunch. Some were out-of-this-world original, some were simple but flavorful and others were lacking in originality and taste. My favorite was the french toast, and I hope I can recreate it at home soon. I don’t even want to guess how many cupcakes we tasted that day, and I’m glad that we cut each one into five pieces to share. For lunch, we had the most amazing pizza at BAR, where Cupcake Camp was held. Tara recommended the mashed potato pizza, and it was such a unique and delicious combination. After lunch, Tara drove us around Yale, and it’s a gorgeous campus. I’m so glad we got a tour from someone who knows so much about it.
Somehow, even after all the cupcakes, we still needed dinner that night. We spent some time hanging out on Tara’s front porch and planning the menu. We finally decided on chorizo cheese dip, guacamole, and shrimp enchiladas. It was my first time eating homemade tortillas, and I can’t believe I haven’t made them myself. That will most definitely be changing soon. We ate dinner late because we were all talking and photographing while we cooked. If you’re a food blogger, there is seriously nothing better than cooking with your best blogging pals. As sad as I was for the weekend to end, I was glad to get home to Eric and Clara. I’ll spare you the details of my trip home, but it involved me running through the Philadelphia airport carrying my ridiculously heavy bag only to miss my connecting flight. Still, it was all worth it because I had such a fabulous time.