One of many perks about my parents' adorable house is its location. Sob and Boo were kind enough to live in the Florida Keys until just after I got married, and then move to South Carolina, which is where I went to college. And therefore is where some of my best friends live! So the trip to see the 'rents often doubles as a reunion with friends, and this was no exception. My buddy Jess was kind enough to have a wedding shower in February, giving me the perfect excuse to drive to Charleston.
My friends and I went to Columbia College in Columbia, SC, which is smack-dab in the middle of the state. My parents live in the northwest corner, and Charleston is in the southeast, so Columbia is a good stopping point. Lucky for me, another buddy and her family met me there for lunch!That's Boo, the only other one from our little crew whose occupation is hausfrau. Her husband Lionel and son Xavier, or Professor X, just welcomed a baby boy to the family in January. Logan (Wolverine!) slept through the lunch date, and missed the good times.
Sadly, Boo couldn't come along to the shower, so I drove on alone. Now, this was a big occasion for me as well as for the bride and groom. See, Jess and Merrick have been together for years, and thanks to the stupid Army spent the first couple years of their marriage apart. They are renewing their vows and having a big party for friends and family next month, and we are all thrilled. The reason it's a big deal for me is that somehow, thanks to living off-campus, studying in Washington and working too much during college, I had never met Merrick. I was convinced he was a ruse perpetrated by my friends...until last month!
I am here to tell you, he is real. And for some reason his presence makes me goofy.I'm sure it had nothing to do with the chianti I had at dinner.
Speaking of dinner? One of the best I've ever had. Perfectly cooked blackened mahi atop wild mushroom risotto with a whole-grain mustard cream sauce. Holy mackerel.
The next morning Jess took the cat for a walk before we left for the shower. Not kidding.The shower was so much fun. Jess's mom Lorraine was our lovely host, and she rocked. Check it.There were games, I won a prize, and Jess got enough lovely gifts to fill the car! And then some.
Best of all, another one of our friends made the drive and partied with us. We didn't quite have a quorum from the Class of 2004 (plus a couple) crew, but we got to sit around for a couple hours shooting the breeze in Jess and Merrick's screen porch that afternoon. I'm so lucky.