My pre-birthday trip this weekend was absolutely wonderful. We met at my house on Saturday afternoon and piled into my sister's car for the hour-long drive. There were four of us, which turned out to be just the right number of people.
We stopped on the way at a fairly new winery that was headquartered in a tiny, 1950s elementary school building (I'm sure you can picture it). We tasted their selection and each bought several bottles. It's nice to have wine on hand for summer entertaining.
Once we got into Atchison, we had just enough time to stop at Nell Hill's to shop for home decor items for the last half hour they were open. I picked up some lovely, green-handled measuring spoons and a decorative urn with a lid. The urn is for my husband's uncle's ashes, which have been sitting in a cardboard box in the studio for way too long. I figure we can work the plastic bag into the opening of the urn and seal it with Gorilla Glue.
Once we arrived at the B&B, we took the tour, put our stuff in our rooms, and repaired to the front porch to sit on the swing, drink wine and eat cheese and crackers. The proprietor gave us a book of menus from local restaurants and made a reservation for us at 7:15.
We ate dinner at a restaurant overlooking the Missouri River, then took a stroll along the river after dessert. The weather was beautiful and our only regret was that we'd locked our purses in the car before we discovered that there was a pub up the road.
When we returned to the B&B, we got into our pajamas and played Apples to Apples on the huge bed in the room where I was staying. My sister brought out a French silk pie she had in a cooler and me made chocolate martinis.
We didn't stay up particularly late, but we all managed to sleep in until just before our scheduled 9:30 a.m. breakfast. When we got downstairs, we found a table set up for us in the mansion's sun room. Breakfast was German baked eggs (delicious! I got the recipe), spiced bacon, asparagus wrapped in smoked turkey and chive, cinnamon rolls, and parfait glasses filled with fresh strawberries and real whipped cream. It may very well have been the best breakfast I've ever had.
We lingered over the breakfast table until nearly 11, then packed up and headed toward home. On the way, we stopped in Weston, Missouri and shopped for a couple of hours.
You may be wondering: was the house haunted? Well, not that any of us could tell. It was just a beautiful, old house with creaky floors. None of us minded the non-supernatural nature of the weekend.
My actual birthday is this coming Saturday (7/7/07) and I have nothing planned whatsoever. However, I like to celebrate my birthday over several weeks, so I'm sure I'll manage to get in many more parties between now and then.