Monday, June 30, 2014

Carry Me Back to Ol' Virginny

This year’s Cousin Reunion was hosted by cousins who live in the Charlottesville, Virginia area.  It’s quite a journey by car.  But we tacked on two days at my sister and brother-in-law’s near Appomattox.  Other visiting cousins planned to arrive early in C-ville or stay later and take in the many historical sites.  In fact, cousin Jane who works at Jefferson’s Monticello arranged a tour on Friday afternoon just for family members.  I did not take advantage of this tour – would have liked to – but I was still in West Virginia, and I’ve already seen TJ’s home 3 times before.

Friday, June 20
Travel:   12 hours
Supper:  Sticks Kebob Shop, Charlottesville
Motel:    English Inn, Charlottesville

Saturday, June 21
Breakfast:  the motel has a nice buffet
Lunch:       potluck picnic at Mint Springs Valley Park, Albemarle County
Supper:      catered meal at White Hall Ruritan Club building near Crozet
                  fried chicken, roast pork, fresh vegetables, salads, macaroni and cheese, cupcakes

The sacred Newel Post Ceremony

Sunday, June 22
Breakfast:   buffet at motel
Drove to Jane and Rod’s log home in rural Appomattox
Martha, Steve and Dawn arrived
Skipped lunch because I was stuffed from breakfast
Supper:   grilled hamburgers, potato salads, coleslaw and Ramen noodle coleslaw, leftover cupcakes (with Jane’s fist print where she smashed them)

Monday, June 23
Jane and Rod had to work their shifts at Holliday Lake State Park
John and I went to the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford.  We then traveled to the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Lunch:   Peaks of Otter Lodge Restaurant
               me: chicken club wrap with clam chowder soup
               J: pulled pork BBQ sandwich with apple slices
               we shared a blackberry cobbler with ice cream ….. yum
We drove along the BRP stopped a couple time.  We walked across a pedestrian bridge over the James River.  J. went the whole way across and looked at a canal lock.
Supper:   Charley’s Waterfront CafĂ©, Farmville – inside an old warehouse
                me: taco salad (not that good)
                J:  Chicken fingers

Tuesday, June 24
Rod had to work at the state park.  But Jane had the day off.
Breakfast:   cinnamon rolls from WalMart – couldn’t find the Rhodes Cinnamon Rolls that I looked all over for
We took our time getting organized, then we girls – Nancy, Martha, Jane, and Dawn – headed to Lynchburg.  We discussed a variety of restaurants to eat lunch, and settled on Olive Garden-- We had coupons!
me:  Chicken Parmigiana with Zuppa Toscana soup
        I had a taste of Martha’s Chicken Gnocchi soup and liked it so much that I requested my own bowl.
We went to Kohl’s because they were having a good sale.  I found a new purse that was 50% off and ended up costing around $19 after Jane used a coupon and her Kohl’s card.
Went to happy hour at Sonic.  Had a half-price cherry slushy.
Meanwhile, John explored the Appomattox area including "the surrender grounds"
Supper:   Rod grilled vegetable skewers (veggies from his garden) and chicken breasts.
               We also had leftover salads and a chocolate ice cream pie from Kroger.

Wednesday, June 25
J. and I departed around 5 a.m. before anyone else was up.  We struggled through Appomattox, but finally found ourselves over the Blue Ridge Mountains and onto the interstate.  A mere 12.5 hours later we were back home.  Roughly 725 miles one way.  With all of our running around (as well as mix-ups finding our way along unfamiliar territory), we added 1770 miles to the odometer.