ON SAVANNAH | on a surprise outdoor date adventure

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ON A SURPRISE LATE AFTERNOON OUTDOOR DATE ADVENTURE

For a sensational surprise outdoor date adventure, cleverly and cunningly arranged by your date (aka, my hubby), enjoy a dolphin boating tour, relax dockside for a meal at one of Tybee's most popular restaurant, and finish off the evening with a leisurely stroll hand in hand on the lush, sandy beach of Tybee Island - Savannah's eastward isle.

Do not pass up this terrific trifecta of an afternoon and well-into-the-evening engagement perfectly designed for two; enjoy the sun’s warmth on your faces, and the salt-water spray on your arms and wafting through your nostrils; allow the silky sand between your toes and the sea-foam and crashing waves at your feet. Come on, let's get started!

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The excitement mounts as you climb onto the touring trawler at Captain Mike's Dolphin Tours , voted best adventure tour nine years straight, and depart Lazaretto Creek Marina heading up the channel and out into the gently breaking open waters towards the Atlantic Ocean. Every heart aboard is pounding with expectation as you pass shrimp boats and docks portraying the charm of an old fishing village hoping to be the first to sight a dolphin. 

Every eye is peeled, even as the Cockspur Lighthouse passes by and anticipating that first glimpse of a school of friendly, bottle-nosed dolphin to happenstance alongside the boat. The Cockspur Lighthouse, built in 1855, withstood a direct line of fire, 30-hour raging battle when the Confederate armies fell to the Union during the Civil War. The tour guide deftly maneuvers the boat by Cockspur Island for a panoramic view of  another historic monument and favored touring site, Fort Pulaski, that fell to the Union during the same 30-hour conflict. Then, approaching the North Beach of Tybee, the tour meets its half-way point with a scenic view of one of America's most intact lighthouses, the Tybee Lighthouse that has been guiding mariners with its nine-foot tall First Order Fresnel lens safely into the Savannah River for 270 years.

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After an hour and a half in open waters your face is toasty warm from the sun and yet, a bit chilled from the cool waters spry, head onto Tybee Island proper to AJ’s Dockside restaurant tucked in off the beaten path, juxtaposed to the island's Back River where avid boaters park – well - dockside, and head along the pier and onto the dock to enjoy AJ’s highly rated seafood fare. First things first: You do not want to miss the simply southern appetizer of blackened shrimp and grits with just a touch of Cajun flare.

Following your leisurely, and truly delightful meal, head down to the beach where Tybee beach is a pay-to-park community accepting cash or credit cards and parking is free after 8 pm. Cross one of the many public wooden boardwalks, passing by the sea grass-laden sand dunes, take a stroll down to the western shore of the Atlantic Ocean hand in hand. Kick off your shoes, and enjoy a peaceful ramble along the gentle seashelled shore with waves lapping against your ankles and watch the final farewell to the day’s sun as you pass under the Tybee pier. Perfect ending to a perfect day. 


date night

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Our date night consisted of dinner and Lowes. Yes, you read that correctly, Lowes. We checked out supplies for the front steps. Now, let's talk Sly's Sliders at Abercorn and 34th street downtown Savannah. A small eatery but on point sliders and fries. We ordered 4 different sliders, two for each person, but we both tried a bite of all 4. I liked the two I ordered and Jeff liked his two. Jeff had The Boardwalk and the Uncle Reuben while I had Li'l Angel and Pain Don't Hurt. Yum! We will definitely be back with plans to try the slider dogs next time.

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We had the opportunity to buy a meal for a homeless man. He asked for cash but after he first said he was hungry. Jeff assured him he'd order him food (which we did) but he wouldn't give him cash. The man didn't want us to disrespect him. Buying him a meal I don't believe is disrespecting him at all.

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This date night album is a 6 x 8 size which I have fallen hard for. Less overwhelming. Perfect for the few photos we normally take during one date night. I used One Little Bird and Paislee Press digital products, two of my go-to designers. 


date night album.

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This story is in two albums, our December Daily 2015 and our date night album but the pages are certainly different. 

Date nights truly are a priority for us. While we generally just make it for dinner and maybe a movie, but mostly just dinner, sometimes one of us (read: Jeff) will have a grand surprise and we'll, yes, have dinner, but, then we'll do something that is just wonderful.

Jeff had heard on the radio that Savannah was having its annual Christmas River of Lights Parade on the Savannah River so after dinner at Vinnie Go Go's we walked the few blocks to River Street to catch the tail end of the parade but were in plenty of time for the display of fireworks that followed shortly afterwards. They held the fireworks to only about ten minutes but it was wonderful to watch. 

We weren't done. We walked back to Broughton and Whitaker to the Coffee Fox for a cup of coffee and sat outside and watched the eclectic people of Savannah and all its visitors go by. Just a fun evening!


date night album

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I'm building a date night album one page at a time. Honestly, I haven't decided if I will gather all our date photos from past dates or just begin from today. I've already made pages of a ton of dates, regular 12 x 12 size but I've been so inspired by the 6 x 8 size album and I recently picked up a turquoise 6 x 8 leather album with protectors and I hadn't decided what to do with the album. I just knew at some point I'd make a 6 x 8 album.

So, a date night album it is.

This is the album front page cover. I used a stamp set from Ali Edwards' BUILD story kit and turned it into a chipboard set. I love how it turned out!

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I even put together the first two-page 6 x 8 of our most recent date night. 

I absolutely love how it turned out. I'm not creative when it comes to embellishments so I'm pretty much going to keep it pretty clean and simple. 

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Date nights are such an integral part of our life together that it seems only, well, necessary, to document this fun part. We've changed things up over the years from one night a month date night, then twice a month, and now we are dating once a week. It is our time together, even if it's just dinner, to relax, communicate, share a meal, decompress, watch a movie, walk the beach, whatever our hearts desire...and whatever our pocket book can afford.

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We went to the Six Pence Pub on Bull Street, downtown Savannah, the night before Halloween no less, when lots of crazy's were out (in a good way). We had a lot to talk about, shared a great meal at the bar, I drank a Jameson Irish Coffee and watched the people come and go.

 


make a page monday | 11

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Another Make a Page Monday and I must say I absolutely love this page. The old-time rustic feel fits perfectly with the photos and even the restaurant we visited on our day. I wanted to translate that early- mid 1900's feel because the beer parlor we visited opened in 1933 and I could just imagine the scene.

For this page I delved into my stash of templates, this one from Simply Yin that I modified slightly, along with some freebie alpha-letters that look like old newspaper, definitely lending to the old-time feel, a stitched piece of digital paper, along with the black and white, mixed with neutral photos. I don't think the page needs the embellishments but I'll probably leave them on. In all honesty I prefer the clean page without embellishments.

And here is another page for our 2014 album - although I really should create a 'date' album because most of my single pages thus far this year have been from date nights.

Make a Page Monday is the brain-child of Cathy Zielske a superb graphic designer/scrapbooker extraordinaire and I'm enjoying playing along.


make a page monday | 1

Fabulous-Date

I am taking the lead from Cathy Zielske who is, as a designer, making a page each Monday to teach her readers design and more importantly get those memories recorded.

For this first page of Make a Page Monday I actually used a Cathy Zielske template so I know the design is on track. I enlarged one of the photos within the template, changed the color palette of the title, added one tiny embellishment and I love the clean and simple look of the page. Plus, lots of white space. I am not afraid of white space. I don't need to fill it just to fill it. Less is more!

Our date nights are coveted riches. They are necessary to the health of our relationship. We are simple people who enjoy good food, good atmosphere, and being together so we can communicate. This date night was all that and more. So glad I recorded the memories.


visiting the biltmore

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On Sunday, Jeff's company drove in, from five different locations/offices, their employees and spouces/significant other to Ashville, North Carolina. The entire trip was 'on the company' and it was a fantastic thank you for a 25 year anniversary. Jeff and I stayed at the Grove Park Inn (GPI), one of the premier hotel/resorts in Ashville. Half the company stayed at the GPI, and the other half stayed at the world-famous Biltmore. We were not disappointed with our accomadations.

The company purchased breakfasts and lunch from Panera Bread and we drove north in big chartered buses, with snacks and drinks for the 5 hour trip. All the buses met at the GPI and we had a short time to explore before getting onto our assigned buses for our afternoon adventure. Some of the options the company set up were visiting the Biltmore and Winery, Tubbing, Golf, and visiting the various breweries and beer tasting in the area. We chose the Biltomore and Winery tour.

We headed to the famed Biltmore for the afternoon. The company purchased tickets for everyone and the audio ticket as well. The tour of the Biltmore was amazing! It takes you from room to room and the individual audio devices share many treasures about each, all centered around George Vanderbilt. There were no photography allowed inside the Biltmore so our take away photo was the outside view seen above.

We enjoyed the tour immensely. Such a rich (no pun intended) history regarding the Vanderbilts and their home.

After our tour we had a short visit at the Vanderbilts winery, where we learned of the Vanderbilts travels before heading back to the GPI.

Our rooms were ready for check-in, so we got showers and dressed for the before-dinner cocktail party. Open bar and hor d'oeurves were on tap for the next 1 1/2 hour where we mingled with the rest of the companies employees. I met some new folks that Jeff has mentioned over time, especially the ones he speaks of highly.

Dinner followed in one of the GPI's large banquet rooms with accompanying  anniversary fare and presentations. I thought the meal was a bit disappointing, but dessert was good. Dinner and presentations lasted until 10:30 when we broke for after dinner gatherings, but Jeff and I decided to head up to our room. We were really glad we didn't have to wait for a ride to the Biltmore.

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The GPI was a wonderful place to stay. The room was large and very comfortable. Loved the bed, especially the pillows, the shower was amazing - huge, and loved the sliding wooden barn door on the bathroom - very cool. The large areas for lounging and enjoying the view of the mountains was wonderful too.

In the morning we re-visited the banquet room for a wonderful buffet breakfast, a relaxing lounge on one of the verandas before getting on the bus to return home. The company purchased pizzas for lunch on the return trip.

It was a great trip which turned out even better because Jeff has had some things solidified regarding his work se we were able to go into the trip with comfort and enjoyment.

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date night at the beach.

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Jeff and I had a wonderful date night out at Tybee Island. Our dates are simply full of conversation with narry a lull, as we are constantly catching up from a week apart. While we get in some conversation through the week with me working Mon-Thu, 2 pm - Midnight, usually about our day, it is our date nights where the additional conversation, the deeper talks, the dreams, the plans, the hopes, come out.

While we didn't head out to Tybee really late, getting to AJ's Dockside Restaurant we still had a 1 1/2 hour wait time. No biggy! We found a table out on their tiny patio and Jeff got us some drinks to sip on while we talked. I actually had a beer, and Jeff a coke - of course. Time flew and before we knew it they were taking us out to the dock for a table along the water. So nice!

We enjoyed an appetizer of Blackened Shrimp and Grits - devine! We both got the fried shrimp which was very tasty. More wonderful conversation and then we headed out to the beach for a long walk. My ulterior motive, hidden agenda, was to get most of my 10,000 steps in, on our beach walk, but, wouldn't you know it I hadn't charged my FitBit and around 6pm, as we were heading to the island, it died. But, we walked far - at least a couple of miles. I was dying.

But, oh, what a lovely night. Dates with my husband are just the best!

 


digital scrapbooking | using what works

A-wonderful-date

Recently, I put together this digital page of a recent date night Jeff and I had, using an Ali Edwards template that I uploaded many years ago as a freebie. I even think it was one of Ali's first digital templates and it was a very early template I ever used.

This template is a classic design for a 12 x 12 page with photos + words, few embellishments. Clean and simple. I love the page I made and the template.

Tree hunt 2009 (2)

I think this is the first time I used the template. I put together a Christmas page of our tree hunting tradition. Same template, a bolder background paper, still clean and simple.

Remember-This

I used what works again for a story of Elizabeth and Ella. No embellishments, super clean and simple. And still pretty awesome.

Rudolph-and-Santa-copy

Again, in 2011, I used the template but played around with some embellishments and because I only had one photo of each of my punks for this story I added a second pattern paper. I love that I can reuse digital templates, make them my own, or keep them the same; change up papers, add a couple embellishments - or not.

Using what works is a good thing in scrapbooking. I've learned this over the years and I am comfortable using what works.

 


52 gratitudes 2014 | 17

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A huge fan of Mexican food, Chipotle's is a 'chain' restaurant at various locales around the country and it finally made its way to Savannah. Oh my, excitement mounted when we first saw the restaurant tucked away in a strip mall and immediately made plans to visit soon.

Then, our date night was setting up to be a night of pouring down rain and though I wanted to eat at the Boars Head on downtown River Street, the thought of battling the traffic, the parking dilemma, and the pouring down rain trying to make our way on foot to the restaurant, when Hoosier Man suggested Chipotle's I jumped at the idea.

When we took my first bite, we were hooked. You have to be one of those people who loves cilantro though. If you are you are good to go. You know that cilantro is one of those herbs that you either love or you hate and there is no in between.

So, we fell hard for Chipotle's and we'll surely be back. And it's a cheap meal for a date night too.