Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Two Hundred and Thirty Second...

Number Two Hundred and Thirty Two:

Home, Lunch, BLT

The satisfaction from growing your own vegetables, particularly tomatoes, is paid off in a good solid B.L.T. Even more extra awesome is getting bacon from your local Farmer's Market. And although we don't have a huge abundance of vegetables, some beans here, cucumbers there, we managed to do way better this year than last. One of the most incredible things are the tomatoes, the plants that I randomly planted in the yard (even among the hedges in front) seemed to be bigger than the ones in the box garden. By the way, squirrels and birds are thieving bastards and don't even finish the dang vegetables they steal! Curse them! And the good for nothing cat in the picture with me is obviously no help at all!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Two Hundred and Thirty First...

Number Two Hundred and Thirty One:
Home, Lunch, Leftovers

Not much to say except that the first full day of vacation is going well. I need a haircut.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Two Hundred and Thirtieth...

Number Two Hundred and Thirty:
Home, Dinner, Sausage Sandwich & homegrown tomatoes!

I know this might be kind of boring after the camping last week, but now that my other vacation has started, I don't care! Turkey sausage on the grill, watching a bit of Jeeves and Wooster, and enjoying the harvest from our meager gardening efforts; a nice little tomato salad to go with the sandwiches. All of this with a summer thunderstorm rolling through, lovely!

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twenty Ninth...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty Nine:

Home, Dinner, Millionaire Chicken

While Lisa makes this great dish, I am knee-deep in editor mode for Richmond Macabre. We received some really good stories, some not so good stories, and some stuff that didn't even follow the submission guidelines! Grrrr! Anyway, we will definitely have enough for a great collection with some pretty talented writing!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twenty Eighth...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty Eight:

Home, Dinner, Pizza

Arianna's for dinner watching the short-lived series Firefly; which internet geekdom has embraced like a lost relative. I never had the chance to see the series until now, Lisa too, and so far we are really enjoying it. The geekdom is merited!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twenty Seventh...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty Seven:


Baine's Books and Coffee, Ice Latte, Scone

The third day of camping. Lisa and I are usually pretty quick camp breakers. We wake early, cook breakfast and have coffee, then get the tent down. Now, if the Park has more to do that we are looking forward to, Kiptopeke for example has a beach, we would do it. James River State Park has plenty to do, but we were feeling another adventure. We looked at our gazetteer and saw the town of Appomattox. Yes, that Appomattox, where Lee surrendered to Grant and basically ended the Civil War. We weren't necessarily interested in the Civil War aspect (well, I was, but I knew Lisa would not be), but to visit the small town would be nice. We threw the invite to Ceci, who declined; the boys wanted to get home (to Xbox) and she said there was nothing much in Appomattox. I hadn't been in years, but I knew that small towns these days most always had their "Art" communities and Antique stores.

Row of bride & grooms at one of the shops in Appomattox

Well, there really wasn't much in Appomattox. A nice town for sure, and the swell coffee shop / bookstore / hipster joint for my Napstache was fine, but we didn't linger there long. After one antiques mall and a latte, we headed to Farmville, a bigger town, it has a college, and lunch. One thing I am a fan of when coming to a town you don't know much about, is hitting the Visitor's Center and asking the locals where to go. The lady there had a few suggestions, the last being this place called Charley's Waterfront Cafe, which is directly across from the ultimate in old white people furniture shopping: Green Front Furniture. We weren't much for furniture shopping, although they DID have an awesome selection of bizarre outdoor statues, but we were interested in lunch.

We also noticed ANOTHER state park, one that wasn't in our VA State Park Passport Program book checklist, High Bridge Trail State Park. It is a 20 or so mile railroad embankment that they converted to a multi-use trail that sprawls through the town and beyond. After lunch, we walked on it a bit. Very cool and a strange juxtaposition of having a State Park and art gallery main street next to each other.

Art and hiking.

After the walk we were home-bound to empty the car of our camping gear, shower, and rest up before our friend Melissa's 40th Birthday Party! A long, exhilarating day!

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twenty Sixth...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty Six:


James River State Park, Lunch, Ham Sandwich

The next day after breakfast, we went to the Canoe Livery, rented some inner tubes and took to the James on a two mile float. It was extremely relaxing, I hadn't gone tubing in years, the kids loved it and we did too. There weren't a lot of rapids necessarily, but some decent enough ripples to work you up. The halfway point was a giant boulder coming up out of the river, with an island like sandbar on the opposite side. There was already a group of people on the island, so we went for the rock. We found a nice sized snake skin there, then a few of us wanted to try and cross the river to the island after the break. All but two made it after some goofy-ass paddling to get over. The two left were Ceci and one of her boys who meandered around the other side of the bank and apparently came across a big ass snake while doing so. That set Ceci's mojo off a bit.

Anyway, we finished floating down, the trip taking about 2-3 hours after goofing off at the halfway, and then the stoner-like Livery guy came and picked us up to take us back. As he drove us around the park back to the Livery, he told us about the three sets of small graveyards that were around the park. He pointed to two on the way, but said he couldn't remember where the third one was located. They were from the previous owners of the land. We had lunch back at the campsite, Ceci insisting on cooking for the boys while Lisa and I very low keyly made ham sammies. Ceci really wanted the exchange student, Francois, to be involved in a Napstache, so we did the one here. The kid probably had no idea what this whole 365 Project is about, but he certainly understood the humor of putting a napkin on your face to look like a moustache!

The afternoon was spent with the kids continuing to play in the River, while Lisa and I went looking for showers to take. Later in the evening, after dinner, Ceci, Lisa & I went to hike the "money shot" hike that they advertise for the place; the Tye River overlook. It was a nice energetic walk uphill to view. The overlook was very pretty, a place where two rivers meet:

Tye River Overlook

But as you can tell, the time of day was a little off for peak enjoyment. The sun was directly on us, like a magnifying glass to ants, very hot and we didn't linger there long. As we were heading back, nearing the car which was parked near the visitor's center, we found the third graveyard! All of us were curious as to how old the graves were, so we headed up the embankment to check it out. It was the Dixon family plot, with the oldest grave being from the Victorian era, the newest was 2009! We paid our respects among the yucca and shade then headed back to camp. A good solid day at a State Park!

Yucca and Dixon Graves

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twenty Fifth...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty Five:


Okay, I know I am backlogged on Napstaches. They have been done, one a day, I just need to blog them, over today and tomorrow (real day of this post is Saturday), I will catch up the days missed. Here is the first in the camping voyage.

We arrived at JRSP in the early afternoon, in time to set up camp on one of the largest campsites I have ever seen in State Parks. We took two spots in the primitive section on the river, "primitive" meaning we basically shared an executive port-o-let with the rest of the people in the area --yuck. Sweet spot though, beautiful view as Lisa and I ate hot dogs, while our friend Ceci, who brought her two boys and the French foreign exchange student, had the fancier tacos.

After we ate, the boys stayed behind missing their X-Box while we took a nice hike where I did the above stache with the trail map. Then we had this view:

Good first night!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twenty Fourth...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty Four:
Home, Dinner, Leftovers

Another quick one, getting stuff ready! I'm am not going to have internet access starting tomorrow through Saturday, but the 365 WILL continue! I will just back log them when I can get online again! Will be quite interesting ones too I hope!

BTW, Cheez-Its are good!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twenty Third...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty Three:
Mekong, Summer Solstache, Beer

Quick one this evening, Mekong had another terrific beer event for the Summer Solstice, called the Summer Solstache! I look like a crazy person here, but lots of fun and lots of facial hair!

Monday, June 20, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twenty Second...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty Two:

Mexico, Lunch, Lunch Special #8

Parrots! In the Mexico restaurant! Toucans and cocataus too! Plus a basket of extra chips because we all seemed famished at lunch for some reason. And while it is stated on the menu that they charge .99 cents for every extra basket (which is crazy), they have been giving them to us at no extra cost lately. This means that now that I mentioned it, they probably will!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Two Hundred Twenty First:

Number Two Hundred and Twenty One:

Bow-Tie Cinema, Movie, Popcorn

On this Father's Day, Hope had to work, and she wasn't interested in going to see a movie anyway, so Lisa and I went to see Super 8. A kind of E.T. / Goonies / Stand By Me movie by J.J. Abrams. Not bad, a nice matinee flick that isn't a sequel or franchise like so many movies are that are out right now. Hollywood is a barren wasteland, so I have to choose wisely. The previews were atrocious; Transformers - destroying a city a la 9-11, Zookeeper - man-boy tripe, Captain America - looks absolutely dumb (STOP MAKING SUPER HERO MOVIES!), and the last two I would see. Harry Potter, the last one, finally. And then Cowboys and Aliens, which YES, will most certainly fall in the ridiculous schlock category, but like I said, I think I will have chosen wisely. It IS based on a graphic novel, and it DOES look completely ludicrous and over the top! And, it's not a sequel or franchise! (Yet.) Still, when you combine western with sci-fi it should be interesting, well, unless it goes the way of Wild Wild West. Hmmm, maybe I should rethink things....

Anyway, when we came back home, Hope had left me a card that was great! Nice!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twentieth...

Number Two Hundred and Twenty:

Richmond Public Library, Snack, Ice Cream

I honestly don't know why I have such a cranky look in the picture, I think it might have been the sun in my face, so let's go with that. Lisa and I went down to our local library for the Summer Reading Kick Off, which not only had free ice cream, but Barry Fox the Snake Guy doing a program about local snakes, complete with live examples.

Barry holding a recently captured and cranky Black Rat Snake.

It was in the tiny meeting room, and Lisa and I each sat in chairs around the walls with other adults while a host of kids sat on the carpet in the middle. A lady who sat beside me was being very nervous, in a fun way, about seeing live snakes. By the end, she wound up petting one with me. Looks like it was a nice turn out for the event and Lisa and I both know, working for libraries ourselves, how awesome it is to be a small branch and have a great turn out for a program. Support your local library!

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Two Hundred and Nineteenth...

Number Two Hundred and Nineteen:

Home, Dinner, Burger

A hodge-podge dinner of leftover side dishes, stuff from our garden and burgers on the grill. Quick and easy after a lame attempt at sleep last night and a long day. Gearing up for some camping soon too, so the blog will have to wait, though I WILL 'stache everyday. Just sayin'...

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Two Hundred and Eighteenth...

Number Two Hundred and Eighteen:

Jason's Deli, Lunch, Salad

I kind of like the darkened effect here, too bad the background is a parking lot. There was a freshman cheerleader group, each with matching shirt that said something, I dunno "Rah!" I guess, with the mom that clearly used to be a cheerleader in her youth as well. Genetics are weird.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Two Hundred and Seventeenth...

Number Two Hundred and Seventeen:
Chick-fil-A, Office, Lunch

After a few pieces of crappy news while at work, I did manage to have a nice lunch with Matt at the old fried chicken on a bun palace. He got a milkshake with lunch, I got jealous. So I got a small one to have at the office. Gluttony sucks!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Two Hundred and Sixteenth...

Number Two Hundred and Sixteen:

Home, Dinner, Pasta

After I watered the vegetable garden, and the tomatoes are looking FINE, Lisa and I took a nice bike ride around the neighborhood. LOVE our neighborhood and I think that while we were really kind of looking in three sections of town when getting the house, our friends the Goldens and Sebastian / Summerfields really gave us the proper momentum to move to where we have. And we love it! The houses, the people sitting on their porches or fiddling in their gardens --the whole vibe on a Tuesday evening biking along is just what we were looking for!

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Two Hundred and Fifteenth...

Number Two Hundred and Fifteen:
Ruby Tuesday, Lunch, Soup and Salad

Mass army of collared shirted khaki dudes ordering the salad bar and nothing else. Maybe to match the army of light fixtures. Must be gearing up for the beach vacay with the family. The dudes, not the lamps.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Two Hundred and Fourteenth...

Number Two Hundred and Fourteen:
Home, Lunch, Burgers

Lisa's family came over for burgers on the grill, some lawn adventures and cake. This is a P.O.V. napstache I guess, the nephews have no clue what crazy thing I am doing and Lisa looks on cutely. After cake, I showed the kids some Super 8 films. They clamored over each other looking at the small 3 minute reels of Heckle & Jeckle, Bugs Bunny and Dinky Duck, I had to keep telling them they needs to step away so I could set everything up. It was rather amusing when they asked how you're supposed to watch the movie if there was no screen, and I think they meant television.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

The Two Hundred and Thirteenth...

Number Two Hundred and Thirteen:
Michael and Melissa's House, Beer

After Ceci and I had a groovy River City Limits Show on WRIR 97.3 with my band Shoot Fire Yeah! playing live, Lisa and I managed a meal at Avalon, then headed over to our friends Michael and Melissa for beers, chips and great conversation. Ceci and Doyle, Michael and Melissa, and Lisa and I basically hung out on the front porch feeling the cool air brought on by the distant thunder and occasional lightening. What is often best about meeting in small groups is you get a more personal conversation with friends. The laughter is more genuine, the tale spun by the speaker usually more complex and the atmosphere is swell. Anyway, good times on a Saturday night!

I know, I am barely in the picture, but the man faces are clearly more interesting!

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Two Hundred and Twelfth...

Number Two Hundred and Twelve:

Home, Dinner, Gyros

After Lisa picked these from our garden,

we got to use them in our meal tonight!

Another Friday finished. Homemade gyros and Tron Legacy for the evening. I really don't know why I decided that we should watch both Tron movies. The original we saw last week, and was pretty incredible for the time it came out. I hope the new one is at least entertaining...

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Two Hundred and Eleventh...

Number Two Hundred and Eleven:

Home, Snack, Brownie

Lisa makes great chocolate chip brownies, the cat makes a good loafing philosopher. It was very hot out today, especially working on the Bookmobile where a/c is scarce to non existent. But we get to wear shorts and casual gear for just the occasion and you gotta have it in your blood to be a Bookmobiler...

Anyway, when I came home from work, the cat was outside in the shade. Smart for a cat to know when to stay out of the sun. She comes inside the house with me, I immediately appreciate the central air, the cat immediately sprawls out in the bit of sunshine coming in from some window.

So, as cat logic goes:
Outside + Hot = Shade
Inside + Cool = Sunshine

Who knew?

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Two Hundred and Tenth...

Number Two Hundred and Ten:
Mekong, Dinner, Spicy Crispy Chicken, Beer

After a Myers & Briggs class in the morning and a Dr.'s appointment in the afternoon, what better place to unwind than Mekong! The plan was to meet Lisa after she got off work early and have dinner, maybe sit at the bar since I wanted to chat with An about the Summer Solstache event. That happened. And it happened well. An told a trilogy of corny deer jokes, we had a few beers and some yummy chicken. And the place was hopping on a Wednesday night. Ah....

Seek and find stache!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Two Hundred and Ninth...

Number Two Hundred and Nine:

The Tavern, Dinner, Nachos

After an appointment, we managed to snag the last booth at The Tavern and were actually served fairly quickly. Tried the nachos for the first time there, loaded, and good. Lisa helped too, she said they had a Not Betty's vibe. Remember any good RVA nachos of places of your past? I can think of two; Buddy's (yeah, I know Frat bar, but only went for the nachos) and the Texas Wisconsin Border had some kick ass thing too.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Two Hundred and Eighth...

Number Two Hundred and Eight:

East end of town is kind of limited in choices, and we at the Bookmobile often get stuck in restaurant ruts. Panera, Padow's, Mexico, Riverbound - are usually the choices on a Monday as such. But today we hit a place that we used to go to pretty often, and is always nice to revisit! Carini does pie well and when I used to live on this side of town, was the go-to pizza joint. Tuesday night large special pizza night explained my 30 pound weight gain! I guess quality beer explains that these days.... heh.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

The Two Hundred and Seventh...

Number Two Hundred and Seven:
Garnett's Cafe, Lunch, German Style Ham Sandwich

Lisa and I met Janet MonkeyDog at the Police Horse Stables at the end (or beginning, depending how you look at it) of Brook Road near Gilpin Court. They were having an open house day, which meant you could see the horses up close. Nicely put together, all the horses were in their stables and some were friendly, some were pushy, and some were shy. Cool.

Afterward, we thought we would try to go to Broad Appetit, but parking completely sucked, so we blew that off in favor of Garnett's, a short walk from Janet's house. Yum!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Two Hundred and Sixth...

Number Two Hundred and Six:

Athens Tavern, Dinner, Athens Chicken

Such a nice night, not too hot, which allowed us a walk around the fan after dinner. The food was great and waitress was quite excellent. She made sure to get our order in before the ten top with the fat smoking guy in flip flops and pink Izod ordered. Love it when the waitstaff is working with you! Afterward, it was to our friend James and Ruthie having a great party at the Red Rooster. Ruthie coming back to RVA after a stint of D.C.. Great atmosphere and fun!

Friday, June 3, 2011

The Two Hundred and Fifth...

Number Two Hundred and Five:
Home, Breakfast, Cereal

Checklist for home breakfast cereal on a Friday, before Breakfast Blending:

--Coffee, coffee good.
--Gotta have my bowl gotta have cereal. (OMG! I can't believe I just wrote that!)
--Magazine, National Geographic is good, Richmond on stand by if needed.
--Did I mention the coffee?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Two Hundred and Fourth...

Number Two Hundred and Four:

Trak's, Lunch, Gyro

Trak's does gyro well, try it. Oh, they also have a lot of cool fake plants, note grapes behind me, all over and I bet in the evening is all lit up funny.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Two Hundred and Third...

Number Two Hundred and Three:
Panera, Lunch, Greek salad

Gina and I on the road today, Panera and salad and TOTALLY nerding hard on some app game called Shadow Cities. Pretty cool, well if you're a nerd. So yeah, it kind of combines your elements of Foursquare and Warcraft or whatever campaign-spell-online tribeness game.

Anyway, we managed a booth there, which is rare, because it's usually filled with mom and kids or dorks getting free wi-fi for their business lunch meetings. There was one particular dude full of office, swimming around the booths for a few laps like a shark. He failed and had to take a table! I was happy about this.