I had a really intense and totally necessary conversation this weekend dealing with me being so emo about having had to move back home, on the coast I said I'd never return to, with its crappy weather, to the town I said I would never again live in....and yet came to the realization that...you know what?
......it ain't so bad here!
Jersey/Philly really is my home, where my sports teams are, where my pride is, where there is phenomenal food, where most of my (very close) family is, and even though most of my friends do not live here anymore, a few my closest ones live a heck of a lot closer now than a plane ride away (like they did before). Within just a few driving hours in either direction, we have Delaware, we have New York, we have the beaches, we have DC, we have Baltimore, we have Boston (where I am going for the first time in a few weeks!!).
I'll be going to New Hampshire for the first time ever this Christmas, and after quite a few totally-not-traditional holiday seasons out West, I am definitely going to enjoy the "Christmas-y-ness" of East Coast holidays again (um, and freeze my tuchus off). I am not one to complain about a lack of snow and cold, but during fall and the holidays, I always got a little homesick. Pumpkin picking and white Christmases just feel so right. And who knows, maybe one day I will wrap multi-colored lights around a palm tree again, but until then, I'm going to immerse myself in all of the East Coast "holiday-ness".
This weekend was nearly perfect.
Friday night consisted of an awesome dinner date at Kokopelli, a Southwestern/American fusion type restaurant in the Rittenhouse Square area of Philadelphia.
- Ahi Tuna Crudo on Crisp Tortilla, Roasted Garlic Avocado Crema
- Blue Corn Fried Calamari and Rock Shrimp
- Green Chili Stewed Chicken and (what I think was a Jalapeno) Cornbread Muffin
- Shrimp Tamale in a Garlic Cream Sauce (because they were out of the crab dip we ordered)
- Six house margaritas ;) < They weren't very big! But tastyyy
Forgot I had a camera until we were heading out the door!
I had a Groupon, and it ended up being....get this....free. The waitress got a well-deserved tip, and the manager even stopped by to chat to us about the restaurant and its recent overhaul. After reading a few so-so reviews online, I am glad I didn't let that stop me. Great food, great atmosphere, great service.
We closed out the restaurant, as per usual. We then headed out to Public House, where a friend was bartending....and we ran into some of our Avalon favorites! All in all, an awesome night in the city.
|Oh, and ultimate creeper in the back.|
Saturday night, we went out to a favorite pub by my parents' house in Jersey. Our dates? My BFFs Christine (lovingly referred to as Biggie), Mary, and Mary's fiance were all in town!
|What to do when we are "on our bad sides?"|
Why, turn the opposite way into a "dancer pose," obviously.
|This would be why her calamari was spicy....|
People watching was prime Saturday night. We saw lots of other friends while we were out, and my parents even stopped by for an Oktoberfest beer on the way home from the Flyers game before we headed home (responsibly! My Designated Driver Dad piled us all in).
And as for my perfect Sunday?
Homemade Cinnamon Pumpkin Waffles started off the morning. These seriously tasted like French toast! May have to post the recipe.
A husky walk later and I was on my way back to Philly. I brought Black Bean Dip and some chips, and Coop had bought a six-pack of one of my favorite Oktoberfest beers.
Speaking of, I think we figured out our costumes for Halloween this year. Oh, hellooo....
And as if my Sunday couldn't get any better, I found myself gravitating toward the ice cream isle in the grocery Sunday morning. I should've known I'd find this there, calling my name. We absolutely broke this out during Dexter.
(Best SNL skit ever.)
Also got some drawing done in there. New illustrations posted this week!
When it comes down to it, I still need to get my stuff out of Arizona (sorry, Joe and Kristin!!! Soon!!!), I miss having a place to decorate and call my own, and I totally miss my friends and the weather out West....and the palm trees. But that being said, I've found some pretty great stuff to call my own back here. Looks like I'll be staying for a little while. :)
Maybe things really do happen for a reason.