Sunday, August 15, 2010

Friday in Fredericksburg

By the time Phil picked me up on Friday, it was going on 6:00. In Fredericksburg, the shops close down at 5:30 or so. We knew, even before we heard from the mechanic, that this van was going to cost us a bundle, which meant getting money out of an investment account. This is where we became very rational and financially astute (or maybe not : ) ) . My reasoning went like this, "You know, since we only have ONE day to hang out here, I think we should stay an extra night. I mean, if it's going to cost thousands for the van, what's another $100?" Phil thought it was perfectly logical, so I got on the phone & called to find the least expensive without threat of roaches kind of place. We learned that this town's motels are typically booked solid on the weekends from Spring Break through Christmas. Wow. I knew weekends were quite a bit higher priced, but had no idea they were so busy. We ended up choosing Motel 6. No, not romantic, but clean. Sadly, Motel 6 weekend rate was the same price we'd paid for the darling B&B on a week night. I did check to see if our B&B was open the next night, but it was booked. I would have sprung for the extra $$ at that point. At least motels now have a microwave & fridge in room, so we knew we could put our goodies in that we'd picked up along the way.

After eating our amazing breakfast on Friday, we packed up the car and headed down Main Street. There are about 4 blocks of nothing but cute little shops and restaurants. As you can imagine, Phil was over the top excited. (That's sarcasm, in case you wondered). He was so good, though, and kept saying at the stores, "We can go in here if you want to. It's okay. This is your thing, so you pick." Who was this man? ha, ha!

Our first stop was a Christian book store. Now, to this, he asked, "Why? Can't you go to those at home?" I had to explain that not all independent stores are the same. Thankfully, across the street from the book store (which wasn't much to write home about) was the National Museum of the Pacific War. We decided not to do the museums this time, but outside are some displays, so we walked around. Interestingly, EVERY president from Roosevelt to George H.W. Bush was in WWII. I found that pretty amazing based on the years involved in those presidencies. They had a tribute to each of them with a listing of what they did in the war. The museum complex includes the one I mentioned, plus the Admiral Nimitz museum and a War Zone display you can walk through on a guided tour. We decided maybe Phil can go through those last 2 (he went to the first one when it opened last year) while we girls go shopping some day.

Phil enjoyed checking out the war equipment.

Next we parked on the first block of shopping to see what treasures the stores held. We went to an antique store. Now, many ladies love to shop antique stores and gift shops. Since our budget has never allowed such things (and if I go to a gift shop, it's mainly to get ideas of things to make), we aren't really into this stuff. Even so, I thought we'd take a look. It was interesting, but more like a museum trip than shopping. Next stop, "Der Kuchen Laden." My friend, "Miss Iowa" will have to translate that for us. I know for sure it's a Kitchen store! I was in my element. Phil was a tiny bit impressed with the knives. After that he kept trying to turn us towards the front door (so maybe this really was my husband after all), but I would tell him I was going the other way. Here is the funniest part of our trip, I think. Phil uses a kitchen for: A) Getting a glass of tea B) Heating up leftovers and C) well, I think A&B are it. We walked through a section that had cheese slicers & he said, "Let's get a new cheese slicer!" The cheese knife is one thing I never liked from PC. He didn't either. Nor did he like any of the slicers or planers or other knives we've tried. My husband, the non-shopping, non-kitchen, motorcycle riding man picked out our first purchase. IN A KITCHEN SHOP! I got a rosette handle with 2 forms. You'll have to search on google to find out what that is! LOL! Okay, here you go: How to make Rosettes.

Mine has 2 prongs like this, but I bought different forms.
Next we went into a place called "The Candy Bar." Did I mention food was the theme for our weekend? We looked around & opted to come back before the hotel so nothing would melt. We heard about a restaurant with "The best hamburgers in town." Phil had also spotted the Fredericksburg Micro Brewery across the street. Did I mention I hate beer AND it has gluten? I admit, when I could eat gluten I liked beer bread and I have actually bought gf beer to use in my Borracho Beans, but that's it. Mr. German Heritage Weekend decided to let his roots show. We ate at the Brewery & he tried the beer there. I think I mentioned yesterday that he may drink 1 beer a week, if that, so this is not typical for him. Just in case you wondered! LOL! And I drove! Anyway, once I got past the awful smell (did I mention my tummy wasn't feeling good on Wed. & didn't really improve? The smell made me feel worse), it was quite interesting to sit at the front as these huge copper vats are right there where you can see them & see the entire process. At least I felt educated. We found something on the menu I could eat: Nachos! Not the best for a queasy tummy, but it was gf! Phil ate FRIED PICKLES. He won't be eating that in this house, I'm sure. ; )

We wandered down to the Fudge Shop & picked up a bit of that. It was in a little mini-mall which happened to also have a store with the entire line of Vera Bradley bags. Since I also make quilted bags, I wanted to see these. I admit, I was a bit disappointed that none of the ladies said, "Oh, what a cute bag you have! I've never seen that one before!" Then again, it wasn't a VB, but a Loribelle Original. We also saw a full size poodle sleeping on her personalized pillow. She must be a very old dog. She was black with a LOT of gray. She never even moved as we walked by, called her name, and talked to her. I told Phil she was like a giant Bitsy, the poodle I had growing up that we all loved so much. We headed back to the candy store for MORE fudge & some GIANT gummy bears for the girls. I need to take pictures of those. The girls were thrilled when they got them today!

By then it was time to check into the hotel so off we went. We got into the room and found it was extremely clean and even though it was sparse, everything looked new and practical. Practical is good. The lady had thought they had a King size room, but turned out she only had a room with 2 Queen beds. That meant we each got to sleep in our own bed. I think the only time I've done that in the past 21 years is when I went camping with the girls! LOL! No jacuzzi tub. No GF breakfast. No breakfast at all. However, the TV was awfully big & we found some shows to watch.

We later went back downtown to three places: Fromage du Monde (cheese of the world) where we tasted several cheeses & brought home 3 different small pieces; The Peach Basket, a natural food store where I found a chocolate cake mix in a brand I like but had never seen the chocolate variety; then my favorite: CHOCOLAT. I am not sure why, but all of Friday, everywhere we went things smelled weird to me. I don't know if it was the new top I picked up at Wal-Mart the night before (yes, I admit it, I found Wal-Mart in FBG). I don't know if it was the old musty buildings. Maybe it was just that I wasn't feeling super great. This shop, however, was different. I walked in and asked if we could just stay there overnight. My friend Stephanie once said that chocolate is one of my bodily fluids. Yes, it runs through my veins. The smell. Oh, the smell. The rich, decadent, indulgent smell. It filled my entire being. Okay, not really, but doesn't that sound poetic? tee-hee. If you like liqueurs, this place has candy you would like. If you don't like alcohol at all, this place has candy you would like. They have these chocolates that have a tiny bit of a liqueur in the center. Not a cream with the taste, but the actual liquid. They have some with fruit nectar, too, so not all have alcohol in them. You have to put the whole piece in your mouth because the liquid would just run out otherwise. Then, they had truffles & colettes. I'd never heard the term colette and am not sure I'm spelling it right. It's an open chocolate with a piped in filling. I got one with a marscapone cheese & chocolate filling. Phil got one with a peanut butter "philling." Then we got 2 truffles. I don't know what flavors they were, but they were delicious. I SO want to own a chocolate shop now. My dad said, "You'd be the 300 lb. shop owner if you did that!" The girls & I definitely have new ideas to try now.

I forgot, I did go into a quilt shop before we went shopping. It was cute but our stores here have so much more to offer. Very nice ladies in the shop, I must add. We ran by Wal-mart again (I wanted to pick up some tummy medicine & get a bit of fresh produce to add to our leftovers). Then we headed to Motel 6 & called it a night.

Now I am about to take Natalie to bed & call it a night!

1 comment:

BethH said...

Again, such a lovely time you had! It sounds simply delightful from the war museum items to the chocolate and everything in between. I'm w/ you on the chocolate. Doug wonders why a 56 oz bag of M&m's is gone in a week around here! LOL!