Labor Day Weekend Recap

I took this past Friday off so that I could have a nice, long 4 day Labor Day weekend – and also because my Mom was coming up to visit and her train came in first thing Friday morning! I was super excited for us to spend a girl’s weekend together and we had lots of fun adventures planned.

Unfortunately I think I only took 4 pictures the entire weekend. #bloggerfail I’ve never been a natural photographer and it’s really something I need to work on reminding myself to do. There was probably at least 4 times during the weekend that I was half-way through eating a meal before I said: “Oh shoot, I should have taken a picture of that”

I think part of the problem is I’m enjoying living in the moment a little too much to even think about stopping to take a photo. I’ve never understand, and therefore never been, one of those people who spends most of a concert zooming in on my phone trying to take a picture of the band. I just enjoy the experience. I’m starting to realize this tendency is completely at odds with being a blogger. Oops. Looks like I’ll just have to keep trying harder!

First thing on Friday morning after my mom’s train arrived, we stopped at my place for a quick brunch of zucchini pancakes and sliced fruit. Then we headed off to the National Zoo! Even though I’ve lived in the DC area for nearly four and a half years, my mom and I had never made it to the National Zoo (I have been several times with other people). I warned my mom that the National Zoo is kind of a hike, with lots of hills so we both wore comfy shoes and prepared ourselves for a side of workout with our zoo animals. Speaking of which, my mom and I are a little too immature to visit the zoo without making inappropriate comments – but we had a good time. We are also apparently bar flies, as around 2 pm we hallucinated a bar near the Elephants exhibit. Legitimately, we saw this gift shop in the distance and both thought it was a bar. We were making plans to sit down and enjoy a drink when we realized it was a gift shop. #depressing


Seriously – this means we have a problem. And it also would be an awesome idea for the zoo to have a little bar for people to relax in. Take a look at the picture, and the colorful t-shirts in the background were frozen margarita/daiquiri machines in my eyes, my mom thought those neon green stick-souvenirs (rulers?) were celery for Bloody Marys. That innocent looking tourist was the bar-tender. Sadness. None of this was true. We basically hallucinated a bar like a thirsty man would hallucinate an oasis in a desert.

After that experience, we decided it was getting a little too hot outside and we were tired of walking so we headed to Port City Brewery (one of my favorite places!) to relax in the AC and taste the new Oktoberfest beer that they had just tapped that day. I really enjoyed the Oktoberfest, although it was lighter than other Oktoberfest varieties I’ve had. And it’s always nice to relax at a local place!

Friday night we went to another of my favorite local places, CafΓ© Caturra for their awesome happy hour. Most of their appetizers/pizzas and wine/beer are all $5. We gorged ourselves on roasted tomato bruschetta, bread with three dips (hummus, goat cheese, and pimento cheese), a margherita pizza and a dessert trio. It was delicious and we were so starving that I inhaled it all before even considering taking a picture. #foodbloggerfail

On Saturday morning my mom and I had breakfast and lounged around the house until it was an appropriate time to drink – and then we drove to the Paradise Springs Winery for a tasting. I hadn’t been to this winery before – which was exciting because I got to add a pin to my wine map!


The winery was beautiful, had great wines and really wonderful staff. We did a tasting, then sat down to enjoy some bread, salami and cheese on their back porch while we decided what bottles to buy. As my wine collection has gotten a little out of control lately (seriously: someone come drink it with me), I only bought two bottles. But one of them was my all time favorite wine: Cabernet Franc. I can’t pass it up – and the grapes grow so well in Virginia so lots of local wineries offer it!



Saturday afternoon my mom and I went to see The Spectacular Now. It was a pretty good movie – not one of my favorites from this year but with solid performances from two strong young actors: Miles Teller and Shailenne Woodley. Saturday night my Mom and I took advantage of Alexandria’s restaurant week and had dinner at The Wharf in Old Town Alexandria. If there was food worthy of pictures, it was this food. But alas I continued my #foodbloggerfail streak. We had calamari, blue crab fritters, horseradish crusted salmon, bacon wrapped scallops, and white chocolate raspberry and chocolate tart for dessert. It was so delicious, and put me in a total food coma.

On Sunday we took it a little easier since we had such a busy weekend and went to Tysons Corner for some shopping. There were some great Labor Day sales going on, and we both got some great new stuff. Best of all, I discovered the Athleta store at the mall which I previously didn’t know existed and could be seriously bad for my budget. We also got to have lunch of one of my favorite places – Wasabi. Wasabi is a conveyor belt-style sushi place in the middle of the mall and I always have an awesome experience there.


Sunday night I made my mom and I a quick dinner at home after yoga and then took her to catch her train at 7:18! The weekend went by too quickly, and I’m glad I had Sunday to lay around and do basically nothing (which I totally did) before I had to go back to work.

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