I’m Back and a Winner!

Let’s get to the good stuff first!  To celebrate my 600,000 pageviews, I am giving away three magazine subscriptions. 😀  I love how many of you are magazine whores like me!

True Random Number Generator Min: Max: Result: 7

Helen said:

August 12, 2011 at 12:23 pm

My big secret is that I love People. Not real people. The magazine. My mom says I get it from my grandmother who probably single handedly kept the National Enquirer in business!

Have fun on that vacation – we’ll be here when you get back!

Congratulations Helen!  Send me an email at mybizzykitchen@gmail.com and I’ll sign you up for your mags.  😀

I had a wonderful vacation.  I traveled with my Mom and I kinda had to keep reminding her that she was traveling with me – she used to travel a lot for her work, and I think is used to walking super fast to get to the gate.  I had gone through security, was trying to put on my shoes and put my boarding pass back in my purse when I looked up and Mom was already 25 feet ahead of me!

We had great flights, although I am not a huge fan of flying and especially not a huge fan of flying smaller airplanes.  We flew American Eagle and I don’t know about you, but when there is any type of turbulance, even in blue skies I get nervous. 😦

Saturday was a family reunion on my grandpa’s side of the family.  Sadly my grandparents died when I was 11 and 18, so I have been without them for 25 years.  Every time I smell canteloupe or cinnamon bread I think of my grandma, and everytime I see crabs it reminds me of the crab boils they used to have every summer and I have images of my grandpa elbow deep in blue crabs smiling.

It was the first time I’ve seen my Aunt and Uncle’s new kitchen – which I loved.  It used to be really tiny, but they tore down a wall and opened it up.  So much counter space!

While it rained a tiny bit early on, it was nice to hang out on the deck – no mosquitos!

The matriarch of the family is now my Aunt Cele, the sole surviving sibling.  She just turned 81 and was counting down the minutes until 5:00 p.m. so she could have her bourbon and water and declare it “A Brand New Party!”

my Aunt Cele and Mom

And it was a time to meet a new family member!  My cousin Kimberly’s son Jamar – he just turned one and was such a happy baby.  I don’t think I heard him cry once the whole day.

Here is a picture of the whole gang – it was nice catching up with everyone.  It’s funny though, because while the ahem “older” generation communicated through email, one of my younger cousins came up to me and said “in order to keep in touch with the younger generation, I think next year we should do an eVite, facebook event, or twitter to keep us informed.”  😀

Sunday we drove from my Aunt and Uncle’s house from Richmond to Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia.  It’s about a 3 hour drive, and wouldn’t be complete without a stop to Chesterfield Berry Farms for fresh produce.  I wish I didn’t carry on my bag because I would have loved to bring home a couple of their canned goods such as this:

We also stopped by an antique store – it was so big you could literally spend all afternoon there and not see everything.  I really liked this painting:

It rained only once for a short time while we were there.  The water was so clear and warm – nothing like putting on a life jacket and just floating the afternoon away.

My Aunt collects sunflower faces – all different shapes and sizes – I hadn’t seen this one before, but I love the colors.

The lake house is on a hill.  The house is 200 years old and my Aunt and Uncle are only the 5th owners of the house!

I have a confession to make – I ate like a pig and only worked out once the whole time.  And while I enjoyed my mini-vacation, I am looking forward to meal planning and buying lots of fruits and veggies this weekend.

My favorite day was going out on the pontoon boat – it takes about an hour to boat from the house to the marina.  My Uncle Dave was the captain:

They have giant carp there and we always bring popcorn to feed them – love how they open their mouths to try to get the first bite!

The ducks tried to get to the popcorn first though!

Best of all was reconnecting with the women on my grandma’s side of the family.  My Mom and Aunt Martha grew up near their cousins:  Sandra, Linda, Nancy, David and Beverly.  Sandra, Linda and Beverly made the weekend trip – it has been years since I’ve seen this side of the family.

It’s difficult being the “distant” relative.  My parents moved from Virginia to Chicago in 1966 and never went back.  So while everyone else in my family who stayed in Virginia saw each other quite frequently, we only visited every summer.  And obviously, as an adult those trips became fewer and farther between.

One of my mom’s cousins I connected to right away with was Linda.  She’s super funny and a great story teller.

Here are the cousins:

And here are all the women that stayed at the lake:

Then before we knew it, we were back on a plane coming home.

And when I was standing at the copier at work yesterday, all I could think of was that I’d rather be here:

I am looking forward to catching up on all of you over the weekend – hope you guys had a great week!

I am going to WW tomorrow to face the music – my hope is that my weight gain is less than 5 pounds! 😀

Happy Friday – make it a great day!


32 thoughts on “I’m Back and a Winner!

  1. What a fabulous time! It sounds like such fun and the smiles all around are fantastic.

    I can’t believe Aunt Cele is 81 – she looks amazing.

    Glad you are home safe and sound. We missed ya!

  2. Rachel Palmieri

    Welcome back! My mornings were a lot more boring without a Biz blog post! I’m glad you had a fabulous time in VA. Don’t worry about WW tomorrow 🙂

    Your cousin Jamar is ADORABLE and your Uncle Dave looks like he was born to captain a boat (or sing with the Grateful Dead) and your waist looks teeny tiny in the picture of you with Linda in the kitchen.

    Oh and that Reuben you ate…OMG….I’ve been detoxing for like 12 days and that picture just about killed me!

  3. You are going to think I’m a TOTAL NUT JOB but when I posted that comment on the magazine giveaway, I saw that I was #7. That’s my lucky number and I fleetingly thought maybe it really would be my lucky number – lol! HURRAY!!!!!

    This was just a great vacation, weight gain be damned. It’s nothing that you can’t undo and I always think vacation weight seems to come off so much quicker if you get right back to regularly scheduled programming.

    Oh, and I’m going to be your Aunt when I’m 81 only I’ll be waiting to drink my martini!

  4. What a lovely time it sounds like you had! eh…get right back on track…that is all you can do, whatever the number is…the important thing is that you had fun and enjoyed yourself! 🙂

  5. What a trip! Looks just GORGEOUS there! And such quality family time- perfect. The food- delicious. Ice cream is always better on vacation. And the carp mouths crack me up. I’ve missed your posts biz!

  6. What a nice trip! So glad you got to reconnect with your mom’s side of your family! And that gooey sandwich looks amazing!!!

    Hope your Friday is going well, and have a great weekend!

  7. So pretty and green. I lived in Virginia/DC area for 5 years. I grew up in Western PA, so green hills and rivers and lakes.

    I am also the “distant” relative, now that I live in California. I have a sister in NC, but the rest of the siblings are in PA still. It’s hard to schedule time when we do go home.

  8. Welcome back!! It looks like you had a fabulous time!

  9. Welcome back, Biz! What a wonderful time you had!!! Loved all the pictures!

    My husband’s theory on vacation weight is that if you catch it fast then it won’t have time to settle. Usually we’re able to get it off within the week of returning. Vacation weight is worth it though! 🙂

  10. What IS it about short mothers who walk like speed demons?!? Mine is the same way – sounds like we should set them up, as they can speedwalk to their heart’s content, lol!

    Woohoo for Helen winning the magazines! I look forward to seeing all the yummy things she’s gonna cook after reading them.

    The vacation looks like it was great. The open-mouthed carp are hilarious! Nice to relax, reconnect, and hello – EAT! (you were on vacation, after all!). Welcome home. 🙂

  11. Yay! You’re back! I missed you. I enjoyed your vacation pics and story. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Welcome home! Glad you had a good trip. Love all the pictures. Good for you for not skipping WW this week, it is always tempting. Best to just get right back on the wagon.

  13. I love this post! Besides my sister, I don’t have any family near me. Just looking at your pictures and reading about your gathering makes me feel so warm and fuzzy inside. It’s looks like a great time was had by all. Welcome back.

  14. Love all the pics! You look amazing, so tiny! The carp pic is sooo funny, didn’t know they did that!
    Screw any weight you gained, you know you will kick ass now! 🙂

  15. Looks like a fanatastic week Biz!

  16. Sounds like you had such a great time! I’d don’t blame you for wanting to be at that picture instead of work. I’d rather be there, too!

  17. Glad to see you back! What a wonderful vacation, I agree that picture of the lake is where I’d like to be right now:)

    Talked about your salsa on my blog today!

  18. Weighting For 50

    Welcome back Vat!!! Glad you had a good holiday! Thanks for sharing the photos. (the carp are ENORMOUS! And Hungry! 🙂 ) Congratulations on your 600,000 views!!! Happy Friday!!!

  19. Welcome back. Thanks for sharing all those wonderful pictures!

  20. Looks like you had a great vacation with the family. Those carp kinda creep me out, and I worked in fisheries. Totally not into freshwater fish I guess. HA!

  21. erintakescontrol

    Sounds like you had a great time! I love catching up with family.

    This “everytime I see crabs” business made me giggle! I need to get my mind out of the gutter!

  22. It sounds weird hearing you use the word “grandma” for Grammy.

    Glad you made it to the lake this year. Too bad we missed each other by six weeks. No fair mama gotta go twice! Did you play Banagrams at all?

    I think your airplane picture is my favorite. It’s like, “Here we are shooting up into the sky at a 45° angle.”

  23. Welcome back! Looks like a great trip! What a blessing to have such a large family.

  24. oh my gosh look at the whole gang! what a wonderful family you have. thank you for sharing the pics and have a great weekend!

  25. What an awesome vacation!!
    I love the picture of the carp 🙂

  26. I’m the distant relative in my family, too. My entire family is like the black sheep simply because we’re not in Wisconsin. It’s hard! But I’m so glad you had a wonderful trip. I’m jealous of the mosquito-free deck…with all the rain this summer, those suckers are TERRIBLE!!! Here’s to a week or fruits, veggies, and exercise! Cheers, Biz…missed you 🙂 A lot!

  27. Just checking to see if I can comment, trying new things.

  28. Welcome back, Biz!

    I don’t know why, but those giant carps really make me shiver! I will probably have bad dreams with giant carps with giant mouths in them…

  29. omg those carps would freak me out! so scary!!

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