Monday, August 29, 2011

Mt. Vernon, Illinois

You may remember last week when I posted this on my facebook wall:
I posted it because Brandon had a vintage base ball game in Mt. Vernon, IL.
The cool thing was that the Jefferson County Historical Village Museum sponsored the game. Mt. Vernon doesn't have an official team yet so this was a chance for those interested to get to play.
The village was right across the street from the ball field.
What you can't see from these pictures is that the field was really too small and not flat. The boys had a hard time because they kept hitting the ball into the cemetery. The Mt. Vernon players caught onto the rules quickly and seemed to have a great time. There was a massive crowd watching. People said they heard about the game in the newspaper and in church bulletins (it's a small town, hehe).

After the game, we were invited inside the museum. It wasn't much...
As you can see, there were some wedding dresses on display... meh... I'll take GW's Mt. Vernon anyday!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Friday Night Lights

On Friday, Brandon and I went to the Murphysboro vs. Carbondale football game.This is the most popular game of the year even though the schools are not in the same division. The game alternates between the schools each year and this year the game was in Murphy. We got there a bit late around 6:45pm and had to park way out on the road leading into the school. Luckily, we met some friends there who saved us seats in the bleachers.

The Red Devils and the Terriers put on a good game. Carbondale dominated the first half. The most excitement was an injury to one of the Carbondale players. He was carted off the field on a stretcher.
The weather was perfect and the crowd was really into it. It was fun to look around and recognize so many people. I guess I've become a townie!
The final score was 14 to 24. Carbondale won ... womp womp.

Going to check out the DuQuoin State Fair tonight. Hope everyone back home made it through the hurricane safe and sound.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

People of Southern Illinois

A man hits his head while trying to steal a TV from Hangar 9 in Carbondale and is caught on camera. Watch the video here:

Carbondale Times

Friday, August 19, 2011


Although Friday is our usual date night (Steak 'n Shake with coupons in tow... we're classy like that), Brandon and I went out on Tuesday to celebrate our anniversary. Five years people!

This is a picture from my first time in Carbondale in October 2006:
Yep, this is the pic I used for my blog header
To celebrate, I chose Cummare's in Murphysboro. It's my favorite restaurant in Murphy (sorry 17th Street). Mom, you would love this place! Homemade Italian food in a classy atmosphere. It's definitely a place to go when you want a 3 course meal. Although, there isn't a Delmonico steak on the menu - sorry Darius.

First of all, check out the cute storefront. If you look closely you will see a "1896" on the top cornerstone. We started with the Toasted Ravioli appetizer. I informed Brandon that toasted ravioli is a regional dish native to St. Louis. He was surprised, having grown up with it all his life.
Next up was salad and garlic bread. Their house dressing - balsamic vinaigrette is delish!

And finally the entrees arrived. Brandon had the Shrimp Alfredo:

And I went with the Tortellini:
Tons of food = lots of leftovers. Unfortunately, we were too full for desert but I'd like to try their tiramisu. And I'm sure we'll be back to try the pizza. Both times I've been here the owner was there working in the kitchen. This time we saw him taking a drink with a customer. Now that's a sweet gig!

PS: Cummare means best friend in Italian

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Spillway & Inspiration Point

The fun with Caitlyn continued on Sunday with a trip to the Lake Kinkaid Spillway (aka the the Crisenberry Dam as I learned on that website). Check it out:  
The weather was really great for climbing to the top where we got to wade in the lake. We tossed a Frisbee around for a bit and then wandered down through the falls. The water in the lake was very low but that made for some great waterfalls to play around in.
After swimming we decided to go to Inspiration Point.

No, we didn't hike all the way up, we drove.Such a cool view of the Mississippi and the Big Muddy bottoms.
That road runs along a levee. I really did not know what a levee was until I moved here!

Very very scenic. Perfect place to take visitors on a sunny day.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wine & Dine

Caitlyn, our friend from Columbus, OH just became a lawyer. Before starting her first job she decided to come check out Southern Illinois! We had a great time showing her around, starting on Friday with a house party:

We had a delicious meal in Jarrod's garage featuring a watermelon basket:
Carved and balled by me!
On Saturday we hit the wine trail:

We made our first stop at Kite Hill Vineyards for their famous slushie.

We also stopped by Orlandini Vineyards - where we picked up the "Wino Xing" sign - and posed in front of the Blue Sky Vineyards gates. For my third time, we went to Pomona Winery which I have decided is my favorite. All their wines are sweet and go down easy - no grapes here! Plus the hosts are amazingly friendly. If you go ask for Becky. We actually had the owner serving us this time. He was so knowledgeable and gave us recipes to use all the wines in. The owner is going to publish a cookbook soon. Go here!
Pomona Winery

Pomona Natural Bridge
As we were driving through Pomona we I saw a sign for a Natural Bridge and demanded that we go there. It was a bit of a drive through the forest but totally worth it.
Our evening ended at Pinch Penny Pub where Rock U were playing in the beer garden. All in all it was a great day.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Comfy Cow

On our drive back from Williamsburg we knew we would be driving through Louisville again so I decided to find a place for a good pit stop. Ice cream came to mind, so I did a quick google search and found The Comfy Cow. Cute website and yummy flavors - yes please!
Actually Man v. Food Nation was there just a week before. Brandon and I couldn't be more excited to try it. When we pulled off the exit for the shop we could tell that we were in a very nice part of town. The shopping center where it is located is full of specialty shops. The store had all sorts of cute decorations and a five year old was having a birthday party. We noticed quite a few people for 4pm on a Monday. I ordered Dulce de Leche de Salte (Salty Caramel) and Brandon had German Chocolate Cake. Mine had a nice toasty taste while Brandon's was rich and creamy. If you're ever in Louisville it's worth a stop.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Look Ma

I made pie!

I came home last night to find a package from Amazon. Mom sent me a belated housewarming present - a pie plate!
Naturally, I made pie. Immediately! The only fruit we had was frozen rhubarb and red raspberries. Brandon has been wanting rhubarb pie for a while now. He has a good childhood memory of it. I've never tried it but I wanted PIE!
Rhubarb has a really great flavor. The texture though is a little odd - very fibrous, like celery. I used this recipe for the filling. It turned out quite liquidy but I think that was because I used frozen fruit. Tasted delicious and looked darn pretty in the dish. Thanks Mom!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dear Food Network,

Williamsburg has got some good eats! Brandon and I were there this past weekend to attend a friend's wedding. I went to college there and he has been there enough to be considered an expert.

There are two places that are mandatory stops on any trip to Williamsburg, VA. The first is Sno to Go, home of the stuffed sno-ball. That is a sno cone stuffed with vanilla soft serve - delicious! The flavors are endless. We went twice - could've been three but they are closed on Sundays. I ordered Tiger's Blood (red berries and coconut) and Bahama Mama (pineapple, orange, mango and pina colada). Swizzleberry and Beetlejuice are also winners!

Junior Size
The second is The Cheese Shop. This is the best place for a bite in Colonial Williamsburg. The best part is taking your meal outside to eat.

Saturday Lunch Rush
I recommend that you order your favorite sandwich meat and cheese with house dressing. You will not go wrong. My order is turkey and swiss on wheat with house dressing and sprouts.

Other contenders for the best of Williamsburg are: Aroma's, Food for Thought, Blue Talon Bistro, The Trellis and... Uno's (for the fond memories)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Bucket List: Popeye Statue

A few weeks ago Brandon took me to see the Popeye Statue in Chester, IL. We were on our way to St. Louis. Chester is the hometown of E.C. Segar the creator of Popeye. Like every town here in Southern Illinois, Chester has an upcoming town festival called the Popeye Picnic.

The town is right on the Mississippi River. Check out the view:

Anyone else think there should be a Popeye's restaurant in Chester?!