Of cool breezes and days off

I took days off, spent hours not working and largely not even thinking about it. Instead, I have enjoyed the cool breezes, sparkling* sun and the company of good friends.

Friday found me at Tarara Winery near Lucketts, Virginia surrounded by friends, several bottles of wine and the picnic we brought with us.

Long Bomb

photo by Scarlet Rose

After years of the biannual trek to Smith & Wollensky, there was a general consensus that we had outgrown the stuffy confines of this particular DC establishment and would rather spend some time outdoors in a more casual setting. Missing were the roving sommeliers eager to refill your glass and the Wine Week regulars in their suits and slacks who would stop by the table to drunkenly chat. In their place, there was a view of the Potomac and a personal tasting with the winery staff.

Conor And Serena

photo by Scarlet Rose

It was a decidedly low key and just what the stress doctor ordered.

The next morning I was up early for a trip to Crafty Bastards in DC with Ravena, Terra and Amanda. I've said I was going to go for years and finally managed to wander the booths.

It was extremely hard to focus when we first walked in because your eyes are immediately assaulted with so many amazing finds. Color. Plush. Paint. Paper. Ack! I walked away with a few treasures of my own, which I will share another day. While I generally failed at taking pictures this weekend, I did manage to snap a couple of photos of lovelies I did not walk away with.

If only all taxidermy were this cute. I fell hard for these Horrible Adorables by Cleveland-based artist Jordan Elise. Being allergic to real pets and animals is excuse enough to purchase one of these, right? If anyone wants to contribute to this adoption fund, give me a buzz.

These book sculptures by local artist Robin Delaloye also blew my mind. I had actually seen these online a few months ago, but nothing compares to examining the detail that goes into curling, shaving and folding thousands of pages in person. As a book lover, part of me wanted to be taken aback. Instead, this just seems another evolution of the book and even better reason why the printed word should still be...printed.

I was pleasantly surprised at how nice people were there. I get so used to folks in DC being brusque or very much caught up in their own world, but people here actually smiled** at you when they passed. It meant something to be able to talk with the artists who actually made these things and form that connection.

*It didn't really sparkle, but it was definitely bright.

**Sometimes I think I'm becoming more and more a Texan every day I don't live there.