Friday, August 31, 2012

George's Baptism

Cannot believe it was two weeks ago everyone was here for George’s baptism.  What a special weekend spent with family and friends.  I was so humbled by all that came in town {from so far} and filled with joy over the community of friends we have established here in Nashville.  I have always thought of myself as an emotional and sentimental person but since becoming a mom, I am such a softie!  I felt like the whole weekend I was tearing up at the tiniest of gestures.  I have a feeling I will be like this for all of G's big moments. :)

 Since family and friends traveled from so far, I knew people would want to get back on the road right after church on Sunday.  So instead of a brunch, we hosted a dinner that Saturday night.
I had everyone write a prayer and blessing for George.  I know this will be something special for him to look back on as he gets older.

My dessert bar was complete with Casa Linda petit fours all the way from Big D!

A delicious spread!


Our dear friends Beth and Justin are G's Godparents.

Everyone in our small group was there to watch George be baptized.  Meant so much having them there and am beyond thankful for this incredible community of friends.

Our wonderful nanny!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Nashville in Napa

Forgive my delay for the post, but we have literally been in constant motion since returning from Napa.  And oh to be back there now…

So we ventured back out to California wine country {for the third year in a row!} for the event Nashville in Napa.  Yes, this technically was a work trip for B but as I quickly learned last year, this is hardly what one would call work.
Just like last year, we immediately stopped at the Oakland In-n-Out for a little lunch. :)
We were feeling good after stuffing ourselves silly, but a slight rental car issue {our friends' car completely dying on the interstate followed by us hanging out in the shadiest of Oakland neighborhoods} put the tiniest damper on the trip.

Fortunately we were back on the road in no time at all.

Totally enjoying our convertible.  Yes, we were those people.
First night there was the Opry at the Opera event at the beautiful Napa Valley Opera House.
Hot new duo Striking Matches were unbelievable!

Headliner Radney Foster.  One of my faves!
Radney, Striking Matches and local Napa artists all jam together.  So makes me wish I was musically inclined.
Our humble abode for the week.
B and I spent the next morning tooling around Sonoma.
Yes, again we were those people loving the convertible.

Lunch at the girl & the fig.

I am a sucker for matchstick frites!

Olive oil and wine tasting at Roche.

Did I mention we loved cruising in the convertible? :)
Dinner that night was at Uva.
Italian Pimm's Cup and Gorgonzola Gnocchi.
We then walked across the street to the Vintner's Collective for an intimate acoustic show by some of the songwriters.
Our absolute favorite, Chris Stapleton.

The songwriters and ASCAP team
Fellow SunTrust Client Advisor, Earle, and his darling wife Mary Katherine

 Let me tell you how happy I was to actually be able to participate in the wine tour this year!
We started off at the O'Brien Estate.
Our host for the morning {his pours were quite generous!}.

The group with the talented winemaker.

Next up was Taylor Family Vineyards.

Loved sitting out on this lovely porch.
Sipping amazing wine and indulging in rich cheeses {brie with truffle paste is my new favorite!}, it doesn't get much better!

Our final stop of the day was Caldwell Vineyard.
This gentleman, John Caldwell, is a hoot!

He had everyone rolling with his smuggling stories!
After six hours of tastings {did I mention the generous pours?} we decided to pick up a pizza and head back to the house!
The next morning we needed to refuel so we hit up the Sunflower Caffe on the Sonoma Square. 
This is next door to the El Dorado Hotel where we stayed two years ago, so I was excited to finally get to try it.
B's South of the Border omelet may have been his favorite from the entire trip!

 After a leisurely morning of cruising, dining and shopping we headed back to the house for some pool time.  I think the highlight of the trip for me {aside from the wine!} was just the chance to relax and be spontaneous.  No schedule!  That is the one thing I do miss since becoming a mom.  Gone are the days where we can just come and go as we please.  Everything and everyday are so structured now.  It was nice to just sit back and truly relax.  And when can I go back?
After sunning for a bit it was time to get gussied up for the main event. 
We arrived at Baldacci Vineyards ready to taste!

Handwritten lyrics by the featured songwriters were auctioned off.

After tasting many wines and sampling some delicious hors d'oeuvres it was time to head into the cave for the first set of music.
First up was Jon Randall, Jessi Alexander and DaveBerg.  Look these folks up!  You will recognize most of their hits.
Next up was the Farm to Table dinner.

Fellow SunTrusters, Cathy and Deena

Forgive me for not photographing everything but I couldn't snap a shot quick enough before devouring everything served.  Best meal ever.
Adorable pastry chef who created the Nashville in Napa Whoopie Pie for dessert.
It was so decadent and rich but so worth every calorie!

After dinner it was time to head back into the cave for the second set of music,
Chris Stapleton, Morgane Hayes and Eric Paslay.  These songwriters blow me away with their talent.
I should mention the whole purpose of the event is to raise money for Notes for Education which aims to keep music education in the elementary public school systems in both Napa and Nashville.
Ticket sales and auction proceeds certainly raised a lot of money, but the new money maker this year was the deck of cards raffle.
52 cards were sold at $100 a piece for the chance to win 100 bottles of wine valued at $5000 total.  B and I passed on purchasing a card because we both have terrible luck and never win anything.  However one of the gals in our group bought a card and won!  Since it is so expensive to ship wine back home, she let each couple pick twelve bottles to take back!
Quite a happy ending to an already incredible trip.
We boxed up our wine {plus the bottles we already purchased...we are stocked!} and headed out early the next morning for an all-day journey home.  As much fun as we had {and are already counting down the days until next year's trip} we were so ready to get home to see this little man.