Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Happy Holidays!

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Festivus, and whatever else you may celebrate. Hope everyone has a festive season, and stays sage out there!!


Monday, December 14, 2009

Why didn't I think of this before???

My good friend, (and a fine Concierge as well), Kirk started a project a few years ago called the Green Bean Challenge. You can read all about it HERE. It's an impressive food drive for a single individual, and even amongst setbacks, he perseveres! I wanted to help, but wasn't sure what I could do, since I'm not as involved in the restaurant side of things as he is.

He told me once at lunch that the Foodbank of Southeastern VA can actually make a complete meal for one person for 29 cents. 29 CENTS! So a dollar donation will make 3 complete meals!

Can you spare one dollar????

If you can spare a dollar, please donate! If you can spare more, please do! I know it's a tough time for all, but even if it's just one dollar, you are feeding 3 people complete meals. Won't it feel good to do that?

Please know, that 100% of the money that is donated on this site will go directly to the Green Bean Challenge.

AND - I will match the contributions up to $500!

Don't delay! The challenge ends this Friday, December 18th.


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Guy Fieri Road Show

I LOVE Food Network. A couple of years ago I didn't think it was possible, but now I'm totally hooked. I can (and do, sometimes) watch it all day. I don't usually cook anything that I see on there, but I certainly enjoy the shows. I even did a post earlier this year about one of my favorite shows HERE featuring Guy Fieri.

Well, he decided to create a roadshow, and came here to our town! We had to go see. What was his show like? Hmm... Well in his own words "It is food, rock n' roll, and everything they won't let me do on TV!" And it was a BLAST! We were allowed to take pictures, as long as we didn't use a flash, so most of them didn't come out very well. But you can get the idea...

This is actually the picture from his website, and ironically, almost exactly how the evening looked!

Here we are ahead of time. We bought these great "Flair Hair" hats that looked like his hair, and wore them to the meet and greet. Everyone else there asked us where we got them, and then started asking Guy's t-shirt vendors if they carried them!

I think this is a pretty good look for me. Don't you think?

At the meet and greet, he signed our books, and then right after this picture, he picked up a silver paint pen, and signed the bills of our hats! He loved them!

We ended up with front row seats (which we didn't know ahead of time), and this was the view! When Guy came out on stage, he saw us in the hats, came over and said "There's my sistas" and gave us a "knuckle-bump"!

The opening act was a flair bartender from Australia. He moved so fast, it was hard to get any pics of him at all. This was the best one.

Of course, the action shots are all blurry, but it didn't diminish the fun!

Guy claims to have ADD. Since he didn't stop or even slow down once, and became easily side-tracked while telling a story, it was easy to confirm his claim.

This was Six. That's how he was introduced, and how he was referred to throughout the evening. He followed along with a camera and projected onto the screen so you could see better!

Guy also did an "American-Idol"-ish thing with members of the audience. Some were good, and some not so good.

But this young man, Jordan, STOLE.THE.SHOW. He was extremely shy when he first got up there, but by the time he was done, Guy had offered him a spot on the TOUR! Such a charasmatic boy!!

He sang and danced! When he was done, Guy was so impressed that he gave him the sunglasses off of his head! They are a big deal to Guy! He doesn't go anywhere with sunglasses!

We also had the pleasure of meeting Brian and his folks. Brian has just gotten back from Afghanistan and is a big cook and Guy fan. When seats got shifted, Brian ended up in the front row as well!

You could tell that Guy whole-heartedly supports our troops, and was thankful for their service. He had given Brian samples of some of the food and drink, and then pulled him up on stage!

Brian's parents were beaming with pride. I'm just sorry my pictures didn't come out better than they did.

I don't really know how to sum up this evening. It was unlike any cooking demonstration I could have imagined. It was pure entertainment for the better part of 3 hours. If you are a Guy fan, then you should definitely try to see this if he comes near you.


Friday, December 4, 2009

Montpelier Hunt Races

The first weekend in November (yes, I'm really behind!), we went to the Montpelier Hunt Races in Orange, VA. We were invited by our good friends R&E. I think the easiest way to tell you all about this weekend is to do it with pictures. Of course, this doesn't even begin to do the weekend justice, and the amount of fun we had, but it will give you a pretty good idea.

We stayed at "The Farm". This is a family-owned farm, although no one lives there year round. It is a working farm, but the owners use it as a vacation spot. And who can blame them?! It's gorgeous and peaceful, and huge!

We took the camper, because although the house is a large farmhouse, it was BOOKED for the weekend. I think there were about 25 people already staying there. So we opted to bring our own housing...

The view was amazing, although on Friday night, it was COLD! Down into the 20's. Even with a space heater, I had trouble staying warm (not that unusual....), but at least Saturday night was a tad warmer!

This is the view from the back of the house. Large, and plenty of parking!

On Sunday morning, we took a walk, and took the camera so we could soak it all in.

I just loved this old barn on the farm. They still use it for shelter for the cows. I just loved it on the top of the hill!

And speaking of cows, we walked out to the pasture where they were. We could hear them "moo-ing" in the morning. So we went out to say hi. They were very curious, and watched the closer we got. So we didn't get too close.

Then is was off to the races!
The races were held at the Montpelier Estate, home of James Madison. I don't know very much about horse racing, but these were Steeplechase races with both flat track and hurdle races. Our tent was one of the ones above, and was on the rail of the hurdle races.

This was our tent! Full of Food, Friends, and FUN!

Here's M have a drink and a laugh!

And what's horse racing, without a fancy new hat? D&V were in the hat store, trying things out...

Here's D and I with the new hats that we bought. I was told on the way home that night (by a very drunk friend) that mine was a "Bob Hope Hat". Whatever... I LOVE my new hat. Bob Hope and all!

R&E held a silent auction for some of the pottery that R has made over the last year at her pottery class. All of the money went to the Carma Lee Lewellyn Scholarship Fund at Mary Washington University.

D with one of the pots she really liked a lot! She wasn't the winning bidder on this one, but did manage to snag two others!

As the sky shows, it was a beautiful day! Snapped this one while waiting for the first hurdle race to start. I didn't know what to expect!

The went by so fast, that this was the best I could do on first shot! Yep, that's just a small piece of a horse's tail, out of the whole pack!

Actually, this one was my first shot, but it's funnier to say that the other one above was. The one above was actually my second shot.

The horses came extremely close! And FAST! I know there is probably not a foot between my camera and these horses!

And here is a better one from the day. You could hear them coming about 20 seconds before they came over the hill. And then they were gone in a flash!

It was an amazing, fun weekend! I'm so thankful to R&E for inviting us! We met some really neat people and got to hang out with some of our other favorite folks as well. Can't wait until next year, and do it all again. Next year, though, I'll be better prepared to know what it's like and what to expect.