My drive up was nice. It was all back roads and I often felt like I was driving back in time as I passed through tiny towns that seem to be living life in the past. I saw some interesting sights like a bison farm. Actually as I got close to Charlottesville there were farms everywhere. Very pretty! Also on my drive I went through a town called Farmville and I saw a sign for a town called Yogaville. Those both made me laugh a little. I would have called and told someone about it but I couldn’t get phone reception in the middle of no where.
I arrived on Saturday afternoon. We stopped by this place called The Garden. It’s a building that hosts several groups including Jared’s church. An old friend, Evan, from my college days runs The Garden. Jared, Evan, and I went out to a local place for lunch. We also shopped around some boutiques next door to where we had lunch. Jared showed me around the area known as the “downtown mall.” It’s a cool area of town with outdoor shops, street vendors, etc.
That evening Jared was working on recording some music for a guy. I got to sit on on the recording session for a couple of hours. It was cool because I had never done that before. Plus I always love to hear my brother play music. They even had me clap and sing on a song. If the album becomes famous I’m sure it will be due to my clapping. If it does not become famous it will probably be due to my singing. Ha!
After the recording session we picked up Jared’s girlfriend, Jenna and the three of us went to dinner at another fabulous place.
That night we went to a benefit for a homeless shelter that was being held at The Garden. They had a variety of artists – musical, creative, visual – all give performances. My brother played a couple of songs with a band as well. It was very cool. In case you haven’t figured it out already Charlottesville is a very artsy, creative type city. It has a cool vibe. Lots and lots of hipster types. All the restaurants had local, organic food and for very reasonable prices. Recycle bins were common around town and most places had those toilets with an economic flush option for #1s.
After the benefit the three of us tried to go to a local tea place to hang out but it was too crowded (a band was playing, surprise surprise). Instead we just hit up the McDonald’s drive-thru and then went back to Jared’s house to play games.
Sunday morning I got to sleep in – YAAAAY! Jared had a meeting at church that morning so I just hung out at his house, took my time getting ready, and read a little. When he got home we headed out to eat at a place called Michie Tavern. Oh.my.word. Delicious! I swear they had a magic fairy garden in the backyard that produced fresh vegetables and chicken every day because the food was amazing. Michie Tavern first opened in 1784 – yes, 1784. The building was very interesting and all the staff wore period clothing. It felt like you stepped back in time. A definite must if you ever visit the area!
After lunch we went up the street to Monticello which was the home of Thomas Jefferson. I can’t describe how much I enjoyed this. Jared and I had great quality time together walking around and having great conversation. Plus learning more about Thomas Jefferson was incredibly inspiring. It is definitely worth the drive to Charlottesville to visit this place!
Unfortunately we didn’t have as much time at Monticello as we would have liked, but we had to run back to town to be at church by 5:00. We went to church at All Souls where we met back up with Jenna. After church the three of us went to yet another awesome restaurant. After we finished dinner everything was closed down for the night so we grabbed some munchies at the grocery store and headed back to Jared’s house to play more games. (Side note: if you are at the grocery store exploring exotic fruits in the produce section be sure to read the names before picking up any fruit unless you want to go through my experience of picking up a “cactus pear” only to be left with cactus prickers stuck all in your fingers. Harris Teeter should really put a warning on those things!)
Monday morning we headed to the downtown mall to The Country Store. It is a really cute little country store where Jenna works. We ate breakfast there and after that I headed back home.
I can’t thank Matt enough for allowing me to get away for a long weekend while he watched our girls (and he did an AMAZING job). I was so very happy to get back home and see my girls though! 🙂