Thursday, April 07, 2011

All Hail the Groupon

This July, Eric and I will celebrate 25 years since our marriage. As Eric always appends, "25 WONDERFUL years." He means it, too, bless his heart-it's the one thing he says that's never sarcastic.  It seems strange to say, but it has gone very, very quickly. As in a dream almost. I look back and years compress into moments and moments into memories that seem as fleeting as drops of water running down a window through which I'm viewing my life.

There's a lot about 1986 that I want to remember though, so we've started celebrating already. My knitpal Gwen and I were going to go on a teaching cruise through the Panama canal and our husbands were going to come along and that was going to be the big, over the top celebration for the silver anniversary. But it didn't sell, so we're not going, so I have to come up with another way to mark the occasion.  April especially is important in that year, because it is when I got home from my second year of school to find Eric home from his mission and already pretty much a part of my family. I think if we hadn't gotten married, my dad might have filed adoption papers. He was always hanging out at my house, playing with my siblings, helping out my folks, etc.. At this point there was no romance between us, so it was actually kind of annoying at times. But it was all part of the master plan, and he has been a blessing to my family ever since. Some of my siblings were so young at this point that they can hardly remember life without Eric in it.

Anyway, back to the celebrating. Since more is better, so far I've settled on the idea of going on lots of little trips throughout the year. I decided to kick things off by buying a Groupon for a Baltimore B&B called the 1840's Carrollton Inn and this week we had a fun, 21.5 hour extended, overnight date to Charm City, the City that Reads, the Greatest City in America or as Eric (being from Chicago) calls it, a lousy little shot & beer town (so unfair). I instead chose to Believe, Hon, and we went into Baltimore and had a lovely time.

I actually love the city of Baltimore, in spite of Peter Angelos, its much maligned reputation and stupid slogans over the years. Because I grew up mere yards from the city line, I went there often as a child, grew comfortable and familiar with its roads, thrilled to its rich history and found myself proud to be a Baltimoron. (I mean Baltimorean, of course). I can slip into a local accent fairly easily and am able to translate for outlanders who are puzzled by residents warshing things in wooder and drahvin' downyaishin doring the zummer. (washing things in water and driving down to the ocean during the summer) I like that it has recognizable and unique neighborhoods that work to maintain their uniqueness and local flavor. I don't think there is a Starbucks in Fells Point yet. Long may it be so.

This little gem of a B&B was on the edge of one of those neighborhoods--Little Italy--so we were able to walk through the breezy, quiet streets to have dinner in a great little restaurant called La Tavola. It was amazing food, from the goat cheese and walnut salad all the way to the chocolate mousse. I highly recommend it if you need a night away from the suburbs.  We woke up the next morning at the decadent hour of 8 am and had a fabulous, cooked-to-order breakfast in a cozy dining room resplendent with beautiful fabrics and luscious details.

Our room was great. I chose the Caton Suite since I grew up in Catonsville, and it was fun to read the historical explanation on the plaque outside the room and thumb through the more thorough history in the hotel book on inside the room. Here is proof that we were there:

Eric grins cheesily in the entryway.

The hallway leading to the main part of the suite

Eric is amazed by what a good deal we got-all this for the
price of a night at the Holiday Inn Express. 

The view outside the window-these
blossoms were
up and down Lombard Street
We capped off the day with a quick drive up the Jones Falls Expressway to the Baltimore Museum of Art. I took lots of photos, but on film, so hopefully a few will be printable. We looked at lots of wonderful art, enjoyed the blooming magnolia and cherry trees outside the building itself and then got home before the kids arrived from school.

It was just enough to leave me feeling refreshed, with a bit of time to think about something besides my list of to-do's and focus on my love-my husband who works so hard to make all my dreams come true.

25 Wonderful Years indeed.


  1. Sounds like bliss! Happy 25 years to you both! I need to try that Italian restaurant.

  2. That sounds so wonderful! And causes me to wonder if you have the "Crabs for Christmas" CD. If not, I know what to get you this year ;p Happy Anniversary my friend!

  3. WAHOO!! What a fabulous outing - and a Groupon to boot! 25 years is a wonderful thing!


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