Dear Summer, please stay – part 1

Well, it’s official. ย Summer is gone and Fall has begun! Although I warmly welcome the crisp autumn air, changing of leaves, and the preppy layers of Fall fashion, I do not (warmly) welcome the dark and rainy days that lie ahead in the Pacific Northwest (wa, wa, waaaa). So to hold on to those bright, sunny days of Summer, I wanted to share with you a recent vacation we took back to the East Coast! Geoff had his Summer leave for two weeks so we soaked up every bit that we could back home with friends and family!

And here are some of our highlights ๐Ÿ™‚

Our first stop, Atlanta, GA! (sigh) the peach state! ย Boy do we miss Atlanta. *tear* We only had a few days to spend there so we spent them all with Geoff’s dear ol’ dad. You may remember him from this postย and all of our fun adventures through WA! It’s alwaysย a good time spent with him. ๐Ÿ™‚ He was quite the southern host you’d expect him to be! Knowing how much we love (and are lacking) a good culinary experience, he took us to one of his favorite spots called Rumi’s Kitchen. It’s a hip little Persian restaurant with a loungy vibe and mid-eastern menu. The next day (and sadly our last there) we went to a place with a fresh twist on burgers called Flip. Now although I’ve been here once before, Geoff had not and he needed to experience it before we continued our way further South.

Rumi’s Kitchen… tasty little app plate with fresh goat cheese and herbs with olives and naan topped off with my entree plate of rice pilaf and (jumbo!) sautรฉed shrimp skewers. Oh, and my ‘dessert’ some delicious martini!

Mmm…my mouth is watering just looking at this again!
Fried pickles and onion rings with their special ‘Srirancha’ sauce, one of their many delicious spins on a burger, and…wait for it…Dunkin’ Donuts milkshake with some dry ice special effects (insert: oooo’s and aaaaa’s)

Our next stop down the East Coast train was sweet lil’ Perry, GA to visit my middle sis and her family. We were immediately hit with this welcome wagon … I mean, seriously. My niece made us an array of art awaiting us in our bedroom, not to mention the ‘self portrait’ of Uncle Geoff. And my nephew, well he just showed up with an array of cuteness.

We enjoyed some good ol’ southern cookin’, drinks by our personal mixologist (aka my bro-in-law), and sweet family time.

I think one was called a Peach Cobbler … gobble gobble down my gullet!

Candy Land is so exciting!

Dance class (self admiration not included).

‘Bye now, y’all come back!’

After a few days in Perry, we hitched a ride further south to my hometown Jacksonville, FL. (wahoo!) We had a wonderful few days there visiting with family and friends, catching up, and relaxing…and soaking in the Florida sunshine (and rain).

Com’on in, the water’s just fine!

Marco! (Polo!)

My mom’s growing garden ๐Ÿ™‚

On beach day it rained…I temporarily ignored it (despite Geoff’s wishes) ๐Ÿ™‚
This trip wouldn’t be complete without a little Florida accoutrement! We stayed down the block from this little store in One Ocean right after our wedding…we had to revisit, naturally.

I made it! (and could finally shut up about it!) ๐Ÿ™‚

The rain eventually won, but not without a fight …
His & Hers drinks helped ease my rainydayitis pains.

Later that night we came back with my parents for another post-wedding favorite, dozen oysters at Sliders (times twelve!).

We took a nice little nightly stroll down to my cousin’s cuteย manly-with-style condo, complete with this sign…how appropriate! Don’t mind if we do!

Taking direction well, we headed down the street to an old stomping ground of mine, the Lemon Bar. (How does life come full-circle and you end up taking your parents to a bar you regularly hung out at?) I never …

Is this post long-winded enough, yet?! No, ok…just a few more highlights to round out our trip in Jax ๐Ÿ˜‰
One afternoon we all made a visit downtown to see the latest work on my dad’s downtown project, the Laura Street Trio, near the Landing! (Small shout out here, because not only am I super proud of what his company is doing to bring new life to the downtown area, but I’m also superย excited to see it all come together and help highlight Jax as a new, hip, hotspot) ๐Ÿ™‚ You can read more about it here.ย 
This is the old (1902!) Barnett Bank building being restored to a chic, high-end restaurant. Other historic buildings like this one are going to be additional restoration projects like hotels, restaurants, roof-top bars, and other projects in the making!

The new clock they recently restored to it’s ‘former’ glory.
A quick thumbs up from Dad and we’re good to go!
Beach-day with (most of) the fam

Clark’s Fish Camp on the St. Johns River

Gatortail, lions, and bears…oh my!

Lunch date with dear friends in Avondale

Dinner and drinks to celebrate birthdays!

Poses at One Ocean for my bro-in-law’s bday…

Followed by photo montage in the bathroom…

Followed by regret… (I’m getting too old for this)

To finish out the week in Jax with a bang we had dinner and drinks for my friend Steph’s bday…

Delicious Thai treats awaiting at Indochine in downtown Jax!

There’s just nothin’ like the girls you grew up with ๐Ÿ™‚

A trip to Florida wouldn’t be complete without a little R&R at the family lake house…
Dear Summer, please stay – part 2, coming soon!

I hope you enjoyed reading part 1 of our summer vacation as much as we enjoyed having it. What are some of your favorite Summer highlights? Please share ๐Ÿ™‚

Lemons to Love,
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