Tuesday, October 12, 2010

We Heart Savannah

Savannah, Georgia, that is....
Fortunately for our budget, we got a chance to have a little vacation on the cheap. We used our United miles (we got check cards in Colorado that earned rewards- Denver being a United hub--- but you can't get flights out of ATL with United rewards on account of there only being a total of two united gates- because of Delta...bummer) to purchase two nights free in a hotel in downtown Savannah and then used Hotwire to book another two nights for half price! I recommend it because you can get a really nice hotel at half the price (you just don't know the name of the hotel until you purchase, but you know where in town the hotel is located). I had intended this little trip to be for David's b-day since he was off school (and Strayer...his online teaching job) for the week and he wouldn't get another break until Thanksgiving. Also, on his actual birthday he is going to the Ultimate Frisbee championship in Sarasota, FL with his brother Daniel.

Let me just take a moment to tell you how much David LOVES Ultimate. He started an ultimate team at Harding, and now He is trying to start an ultimate league/team/ even a pick up game at school so he carries his frisbee in his backpack, sometimes just stands outside on the quad with it, waiting for someone to come along and just throw the thing. Can you tell he misses it? He has had a long drought from Ultimate and going to Sarasota with Daniel is going to be a real big pick-me-up!

So back to Savannah.....
We stayed for two nights at Thunderbird Inn (super cute remodeled historical motel, which was pretty nice with 50's theme music and served Krispy Kreme Doghnuts every morning for breakfast...another reason why I chose it for David :). The second two nights we stayed at the Hilton.
I didn't get a picture of The Thunderbird, but here was our room at the Hilton....

This was our view from the Hilton room....

Savannah has a very New Orelansy/ European feel. It's also very ecclectic. There are these squares (several in the downtown area every couple blocks or so). Most have some sort of statue in them, like this one....

But surrounding the little park-like squares is a borage of architecture/ period type structures.... homes, churches, really historic big money type mansions...all around the same square! Here is an example of all the builings around one particular square we went by.


....Notting Hill (there was one with a red door although it's not pictured :)/ the Huxstable looking row of town homes.......

....then this really cool building with the pretty blue tiles (see below)....

.....and this New Orleans looking old mansion (this place was HUGE)...

....yes, eclectic! Also, notice the palm trees mixed in with the old south big tree feel...it didn't feel like the ocean was just a couple miles away.

Savannah also has a rich history side. This was The Pirate House...literally where pirates used to come in and eat after a their long months of looting and carousing on ships :) David and I ate in the original room- so technically we ate in the oldest room of the oldest building in Georgia! The food wasn't super awesome though...but if you like fried stuff I bet you would like the food there :)

Also, the place was supposedly "haunted", so here is a waiter showing the kids at his table how to "catch" a ghost on camera (which is pointed at a glass window)....very clever waiter, very clever.
Also, this city was the site of the boating and rowing events of the 1996 Summer Olympics...this statue stands by the river

There are tons of cool churches to visit
This was our favorite church we saw. It's kind of breathtaking!

David below to show you how big this place was

Here is the inside...

I must admit that I was a little uncomfortable inside the church.... not trying to judge- but it felt SUPER weird being in a place that cost a cogillion dollars to make this ornate. I'm just saying- maybe we could have done without one golden column- maybe made it silver and then feed all the homeless in Savannah? Perhaps...but it was quite beautiful. Maybe they felt this was honoring in some way? Again, not judging...just felt weird for me.


This island, for those of you who don't know, is a vacation home for Sandra Bullock, Matthew McConaughey, and the shooting site for The Last Song (with Miley Cirus :).

We found the island quite calm and not too inhabited. We rented bikes and covered the ENTIRE island in one day (actually a couple hours)! Here we are riding our bikes through the streets...

Savannah/ Tybee have great tunnel trees!

We also stopped by the local lighthouse...

David loves showing off his pull-up skills :)

The only pic I got of the ocean...although you can't see it too well...maybe you can imagine!

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Eryn's Birffday (that's how we say it at our house :) August 20-27, 2010

Some of you may be wondering why I put a week long period (August 20-27) for my birthday. Well, in our house we celebrate "birthday weeks" instead of just a birth"day". During David's birthday week he may enjoy a surprise or two like apple crisp, and during mine I MAY get a back massage, but mostly the privileges of birthday week are for not having to get up or do things when you don't want to.

Here is a little sample of one of our birthday week conversations (taking place after we are both comfy and cozy in bed):

David: "Did we lock the door?"
Eryn: "Oh, I don't know, I might have gone to the car and forgotten to lock it back."
David: "Aw man, well do you want to go check it?"
Eryn: "Birthday week?"
David: "(sigh)...Fine, it's your birffday week"

Let me take some time to brag on David. For those of you who don't know, he is a full time student in a pretty competitive chiropractic program, he is usually the one who takes good care of the garden, AND he teaches three classes online (a full time income). And on my birthday week(end) he decided to surprise me with a weekend all about me and things that I like to do.

Thanks to a wonderful couple at North Atlanta Church of Christ, the Eatons, David and I had a great getaway for a weekend in their pool home. David had all my favorite fruits and foods waiting for me when we got there, and he bought groceries for a gourmet meal to make me on Friday. He made Cornish game hen in a white wine sauce, Portabello mushrooms with Gorgonzola and herbs, and sauteed asparagus! When he told me the menu I laughed and said, "No, what are we really having?". It was delicious!

On Saturday, we woke up and swam a bit in the pool.....

Then David took me shopping to spend some of my birthday money. I must give him credit for waiting in Anthropologie for about 2 1/2 hours while I tried on 30 pieces, deliberated, and then decided to frugally go with a necklace on clearance!

We went to see The Switch.... which was surprisingly good. Then we went and got pizza at the place we went on our first date, Mellow Mushroom (apparently it's a chain but we were unaware when we first went there in Nashville and thought we were eating at a cool local joint!).

Here are a couple pics of the wonderful place we got to celebrate at:

Doesn't this look like a catalog or magazine photo?

Jones' Family In Town- August 12-15, 2010

The week after this one, David's sister Sarah had her dissertation defense at Emory. She is now Dr. Nicholson, about to work for the CDC and soon, Africa (well, not work "for" Africa, but work in Kenya, as a post-doctorate studying a disease, I think :)

We went to her defense and it was very impressive! We learned about the eyes of fruit flies and how Sarah's work can impact tumor research (really that is about what I understood from it, but if you want more info-- ask David, because I think he understood about 50% of it, which was more than the rest of us).

The next day David's Brother and SIL, Daniel and Melanie, and Daisy, Isaac, and Colbie Jean (our nieces and nephews) came to stay with us. We had a blast having them over. Friday night everyone came to our house to eat. It was fun hosting so much fam under our own roof.
We had a sort of celebration for Sarah, Isaac (his third b-day was a couple days away), and myself. Here is the cake I made. I deliberated over whether to do a Buzz cake or a Lightning McQueen cake, both hold a special place in Isaac's heart, but I decided to go for Buzz.
Here he is (David wrote the bottom "congrats Pumpkin"- he was very proud, so I am "tagging" his handywork..... I feel so 2010 using FB lingo in my blog post)....

I couldn't get a good pic of both Daisy and Isaac together, but here is the b-day boy all smiles and sweet sister, Daisy

On Saturday we went swimming with the kid's. Well, really the kids and the boys went swimming and most of us girls hung out by the pool. That night Chris arranged for a big Cheesecake Factory celebration for Sarah, in honor of her becoming Dr. Nicholson.
Here we all are at the Cheesecake Factory

Melanie, who is a professional level documenter, has more details of the weekend here.

Monday, October 04, 2010

I Am A Master!

Master of Science in Counseling Psychology, that is. As of August 7, 2010 I am officially Eryn Jones, M.S.!

I must take a moment to mention that as soon as the plane landed in Atlanta from Cancun, after waiting TWO HOURS to go through customs (in our own country!...apparently in the ATL airport you have to RE-CHECK your bags after you go through customs if you are leaving the airport!).....anyways, after all that we drove home, I packed for the wedding, drove to Nashville, crept into my friend Whitney's house (who had just had the baby and was getting precious sleep!), woke up, went to get my hair did, had my final final exam (no, not a typo of the word “final”…hopefully last one ever!... not planning on getting my PhD….. for now :), then drove downtown to Robin's bachelorette party! It was a very eventful 24 hour period to say the least.

The week of graduation was also vacation, and best friend's wedding week! There is no ceremony for August grads, and I didn't want to drive back to Nashville to walk in December. So I got my diploma in the mail a couple weeks later....it seemed a bit anticlimactic, but I was too glad to not be driving back and forth from Nashville to notice.

I'm very proud of this little piece of paper :)

Robin and Nathan's Wedding- August 7, 2010

My dear friend Robin Lee (one of my maids of honor in my wedding) married Nathan Mace on August 7th. It was a fun few days of festivities. Nathan is super awes and we are super happy for Robin! Also looking forward to their visit to Marietta......hint, hint :)

But before we begin.....Enter my new addition: bangs. My friend Whitney's little sister Kingsley (who if you live in the Nashvegas area and need a cut or color- she is the one to call!) was doing my hair before the wedding festivities and I felt like a change. She said, "How bout bangs?", and after asking her several questions about my face being able to pull them off, I agreed ;)

Robin's dad Rick (or Ricardo for short:) prepared us a WONDERFUL 5 star meal for the Bride's maid luncheon.

The bridesmaids: Jenna, me, Whitney, and Miranda

The wedding was at The Hermitage (where Andrew Jackson grew up I think). They were married in this church.......

...and the reception was at a sort of open barn all lit up with twinkle lights:

The Wedding Party

Whitney (other maid of honor in my wedding), who was part of the wedding party, had just given birth to a precious, chill, sweet baby boy about six weeks prior, Cole Huckaby Cantrell:

She had Allison traveling along throughout the wedding day to help "nanny". David took some turns during the reception. Doesn't he look like a natural?

We had a great weekend....stay tuned for what else happened that weekend in my next post :)

Cancun Trip July 30th

Dad and Annette took us all to Cancun for a week. We stayed at the RIU Cancun. It was amazing! We hung out by the pool, went to Tulum and XelHa (literally means "mixed water" where the fresh water from a river mixes with the ocean and Mexico cashed in on the great snorkeling to make it a natural water theme park). We went snorkeling, jumped off cliffs, snorkeled around in a cave, floated down the river in inner tubes, and had a blast. We only took out the waterproof camera for that part of the day, so no pics here...but I did get one shot of these guys haning out at the park:

Below are the ruins from Tulum, a preserved Mayan city.

This one has some tiny red hand prints in it. I asked the guide what they were from and he didn't know. Maybe since they didn't have plates to record a hand-print on for mom to keep, they just had kids record them on the side of their ritual alter buildings.....maybe??

We had GREAT food the whole time. The RUI had a Brazilian, Japanese, and Steakhouse restaurant along with a huge buffet...can you tell we loved to eat on this vacation?

We also went deep sea fishing. I think between David and myself we reeled in four fish.

Here is our sea vessel

And yes.....we took the tradish pic in khakis and white shirts :)

And last but not least.....I must pay homage to my Dad's awesome pineapple colored traveling shirt. Can you pick him out of the crowd :)

Hint: he matches the weird flying corn thing??? What is that?

Thanks so much for the trip Dad! We had a blast.