Saturday, August 1, 2009

Summer Part II (all of July)

Tennessee in July is usually a hot, humid and an overall uncomfortable experience. So when we entered this July with refreshinginly cool air, I was a little freaked out but also VERY thrilled with the breathability! Thanks to the frequent rains, our grass is green and the plants are healthy. Our tomato plant, which was one of my b-day present from Sean, finally decided to spout 3 baby tomatoes! The basil is going crazy, too. Maybe this time next year we'll be looking at squash and peppers, too.

July was full of back-to-back activities, and the entire month flew by like a flash of lightning. We were busy with work, home projects and a little bit of travel. Sean and I took off to Alabama for the 4th of July to visit my mom's cousins. Sean was suffering from a painful sunburn at the time, so we did some night swimming in Cousin Brenda's pool to avoid the sun. Even though a few bats were swooping down over my head, I had a nice and relaxing evening with the extended family. We ate our weight in BBQ ribs and reminisced about old times.

The next couple of weeks were dedicated to one thing only: FLOORS. It was time to give our bottom level a facelift, so we decided to install laminate...ourselves! (Actually, we decided to install hardwood, but our pocketbook decided that we wanted laminate instead.) Besides painting a few rooms, we'd never tackled an actualy DIY project. I'm really pleased with the final product, and I can't believe we did it! I only had one minor incident with the mitre saw, but I got to keep my left thumb, so it's all good.

The new floors were finished just in time to welcome our out-of-town visitors Jordan and Marc. They came down from North Carolina for for a weekend visit. Jordan and I have been friends since 7th grade, and even though she moved away the very next year, we've continued to stay in touch.
We showed our guests around Downtown Franklin, had a big country breakfast at Dotson's and toured the historic Carter House (site of the Civil War's Battle of Franklin).
Marc and Jordan in the Franklin square
(click on the pic to enlarge!)
Enjoying my favorite pizza from Mafioza's

One week later, Sean and I were on our way to Chicago to visit his sister Emily. She had a fun few days planned for us in the Second City. Although, if you ask me, Chicago is way better than NYC...

We spent the weekend tasting local food from Ann Sather (traditional Swedish food) and Tango Sur (Brazilian steaks and killer chimichurri), visiting the Lincoln Park street fair, catching jazz tunes at Green Mill, cheering for the Cubs, and getting dolled up for DJ Corey's White Party event.

As someone who loves good breakfast food, Ann Sather was definitely a highlight of my trip. The 3 of us each got an order of the cinnamon rolls as one of our 2 side items...and they were a big as our faces! I also enjoyed listenting to the scat singer at Green Mill. This 1920's hot spot for gangsters (namely Al Capone) is still cranking out honest-to-God jazz. There was a 3-piece organ trio playing "Girl from Impanema," and this hefty white girl was belting out tunes from all the jazz elders. Sitting there in the haunting red glow of the neon sign and hearing her scat was enough to give me chills.

The White Party was our main event, and it was quite the spectacle! A few hundred people (all wearing white, of course) turned out at Navy Pier to board a chartered cruise boat. Before we left the dock, the DJ played "I'm on a Boat!" from the famous SNL skit, and the crowd went crazy. From there, it was a night full of drinkin' and dancin', and we even got a fireworks show. Watching the sun set over the Chicgao skyline was so picturesque. And if that wasn't enough, there was an after party at the Enclave which is a high-end night club frequented by famous people such as Paris Hilton and The Black Eyed Peas. It was the most posh place I've ever set foot in, and thank goodness we all had on white. It was like a "safety uniform", so no one knew the truth about this unfashionable girl from Tennessee.

Go, Cubs, Go!


Emily and me at the beach...of Lake Michigan...where the water was 68 degrees...

Stacey and Sean at The White Party


No comments: