May 16, 2012

Memories from Syracuse

Outside of my mother's wedding dress, I wanted to share a few photos from the fun we had over the long weekend in Syracuse.
Mom and I flew up to spend a little quality time with my aunt and were able to help tackle some heavy spring cleaning while we were there. Tim (and Basil, apparently) had the camera back home, so you'll get to see bits of my weekend via instagram. We wined and dined at a couple really quaint places. Mom and I decided adding a fresh coat of paint to the garage stair landing wouldn't be too hard while we were there and it actually gave me a the motivation to think more seriously about picking out some paint colors for our own house already.

It's always more fun and goes quickly when you have someone to tackle a project with.

Aunt Vera is super passionate about cooking and is actually the one that introduced to me to the Food Network about 10 years ago — sparking my own interest. She had shelves upon shelves of amazing cookbooks and even let me bring a few favorites back home to Virginia with me. I chose the following for their vintage quirks and classic nature:

I couldn't pass up these 2 gems of Southern history:

When I lived in Brooklyn, people always teased me about my Southern disposition — you can see where some of it comes from. I'm particularly thrilled to have "Cooking in the Southern Manor" since 3 of the recipes come from family homes and several others from the general area where my mom and aunt grew up.

There were some books I couldn't pass up for their more funny history:

Yes, that's the Microwave Cook Book complete with basic how-to's and 184 recipes (I think the hostess on the cover just pulled an entire turkey dinner spread out from the microwave), Take a Can of Beans, Gravy Goes Creative — oh, and the Aphrodisiac Cookery. That last one didn't make it on the trip back with me, but it was too awesome to pass up snapping a few shots of before leaving.

Aside from cookbooks, there were other vintage goodies that made it back home with me, many I remember coming originally from my grandparents' home:

We've got a little Mickey Mouse push up puppet, one of the sturdiest blenders I've ever seen, an espresso maker and a set of handled soup bowls in a beautiful mustard color. We're looking forward to putting each of these to good use in our own kitchen.

She also opened up all of her older jewelry storage boxes for us to marvel at and ask about the history of each piece:

She had her original baby ID bracelet from back when babies were fitted with actual beaded name bracelets, jewelry from my grandmother & great grandmother, and several pieces from both high-school & college. Maybe it's just me, but I love taking every single piece of jewelry out of a box to go through it before placing it all back. We were lucky enough to leave with a few choice pieces of these too — one pair of blue rhinestone earrings my mom and I both loved so much we had to agree to share them.

As the perfect end to the weekend, Aunt Vera took us out to an area called Skaneateles — a beautiful little village about 40 minutes away from her home near the Finger Lakes. I was able to snag a couple shots of the scenery after dinner before we headed back home:

Maybe our own grapevines will look like these one day... yeah.

We all had a great time. It was one of those weekends filled with lots of chatter and those things mothers, aunts and sisters do when left to their own devices. Definitely a good one for the memory books.

...and almost as soon as I returned home, Tim was whisked away for a work/vacation fishing trip down in Destin, Florida. I told him to catch me a big one and am looking forward to his return later in the week. Anyone that's been to Destin, feel free to send your suggestions for food & fun our way.


  1. Lovely photo of you!

    Loving the microwave cookbook! I recently was given the jewelry collection of one of my great grandmother's. Unfortunately, I left it in NC and will have to wait to visit before I bring it back. I did remember to bring back two hand beaded purses that she used to use...they are gorgeous and I love to imagine her getting dressed up and taking them out on the town with her. ♥

    So glad you had a wonderful weekend!

    1. Thanks Monica — funny how things like jewelry we remember on others can have so much meaning.

  2. If you like Italian, you should definitely check out La Famiglia. For seafood check out Bonefish Grill. There is also a little farmer's market out in Seaside. Seaside also has a fun little record/book shop, Central Square Records, and if you make it out that way you should try the juice at Raw and Juicy.

    1. Ai Seong,

      Thanks so much for your suggestions — so helpful!

  3. I remember going through my mother's jewelry box when I was little, and then when I was an adult. Full of little treasures!

    1. Lisa — isn't it interesting how the jewelry "changes" in your mind from when you were a child to when going through it as an adult? Kind of like walking through the house you grew up in (always seems so much smaller).


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