Wednesday, October 17, 2012

V to the Izzay

On Columbus Day weekend, Blake and I woke up on Sunday and decided to take an overnight adventure to Richmond.  I'd never been, and the hotel prices were so good, that we quickly booked a place, packed and jumped in the car (with treats in hand).

We listened to a session of General Conference on the way down (2 hour drive, 2 hour session. perfect!).  Thank goodness for iPhones and the ability to stream online content.  It was a grey day, but it was still pretty and we enjoyed the changing leaves while we listened to the session.

I will admit, though, that my favorite part of the trip down was stopping in Fredericksburg at Wegmans for lunch.  Man, I love that place (we also stopped there for lunch on the way back).  I'm like a kid in a candy store in there.  Blake and I both ended up getting two baked treats each for the rest of the drive - yes, yes, we are gluttons, but it was vacation!

I have a major design crush on the folks over at Young House Love, so we followed this list of their favorite "top fives" in Richmond while we were there.  It's a small enough city that we were able to check a lot more off the list than I thought we'd be able to. 

First up after checking into our swanky hotel (Blake's policy is to always ask first-thing for a free upgrade.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.  This time it did. Awesome.) was to head over to the Virginia Museum of Fine Art.  It was free, and a surprisingly amazing museum.  The building has recently been redone - it's huge and beautiful. And, I saw a couple of Monets that I hadn't ever seen before - one of Poppies that I was absolutely in love with, as well as some modern art of dubious merit that made me question the sanity of the curators.  But then again, what do I know?  I'm not an art aficionado by any means.  I either like it or I don't.  And I just couldn't dredge up any appreciation for the gangster painted on red velvet pictured below.

After a jaunt by the Virginia State House and a ridiculously amazing dinner at Crab Louie (seriously, if you're ever in Richmond vicinity you have to eat here!) we lounged at the hotel while Blake watched baseball and I read. 

Monday brought an unexpectedly early wake-up call in the form of a loud metallic scraping noise as a maintenance crew removed the wallpaper in the hallway outside our room.  Not the perfect way to start the morning, but we found it slightly hilarious when we finally looked outside the room and saw that ours was the ONLY portion of the hallway being worked on.  Go figure.  Not to worry, Blake turned the situation into free parking and Starbucks (would you expect anything less?) so we were happy.

Much to Blake's chagrin, we spent the morning going to thrift stores.  They were great thrift stores with lots of furniture, but we left empty handed.  I had to memorialize my favorite with a photo - Love of Jesus Thrift.  Good stuff.

We'd unknowingly saved our favorite stop of Richmond for last - the Decorating Outlet.  It's the outlet store for Shades of Light which is one of my favorite places to browse online for lighting.  We ended up spending about an hour in the store and left with four lights!   Our biggest score being, of course, the long-lusted sconce for our hallway.

We left the city well-rested and will a trunk full of light fixtures.  I'd call that a success.  It was just the sort of trip we needed.  It's nice to be away from home (even if it's close to home) so that I'm not tempted to spend my time cleaning or doing laundry or filling my time with other necessary-but-not-fun things on a holiday.


  1. I loved the fine art museum. And I remember that gangster dude!

  2. It really is an under-publicized gem of a museum, isn't it?

    I totally don't understand the artistic value of Mr. Ganster. Maybe you can explain it to me?

  3. Any chance Blake might ever hop on your blog to do a guest post on negotiating?! Ha ha. I'm dying to know what he says in these situations!

    1. That's a really good idea! I'll ask him if he'd do it. I'm way too chicken to negotiate much, but Blake has saved us SO MUCH MONEY. I feel like we rarely pay full price for anything...haha.