Monday, February 6, 2012

Design Wall Monday!

Happy Monday!  Hoping you all had a nice weekend.  Hubby, little man, and I enjoyed a weekend full of wonderful friends, awesome wine, and great food!

On Saturday, we hit the Placer Wine trail to try some new-to-us wineries.

We've always been big fans of the Amador and Fair Play wineries, but the last few times we've visited, it has seemed like the area was slowly being infiltrated with more commercialized wineries, and that the tasting rooms were really overcrowded with drunk chicks (who probably turned 21 about five minutes ago) on their bachelorette parties, pretending to enjoy wine, but really just looking for a quick way to get tossed for free.  While I'm by no means a wine snob or sommolier, I do know a little bit about wine and really enjoy getting to know more about each vintner's history and how they like to make their wine.

To avoid the weekender crowds this weekend however, we met up with our best friends and hit the backroads of Placer County.  First stop was Wise Villa Winery ...

Photo courtesy of

...followed by Mt. Vernon ...

Photo courtesy of

and finally Fortezza!

Photo courtesy of

The wines at all three places were very good and we came home with a nice variety of bottles to enjoy after our little guy's bedtime!

The highlight of the day, however, was dinner at La Fornaretta in Newcastle, CA.  Oh my lord, the food was phenomenal!  If you live within a 2 hour radius, you have to try this restaurant!  Believe me, it's worth the drive!!  The restaurant is small and rustic, but is so completely welcoming.  The owner greets all the diners at the door and spends the evening wandering through the dining room making conversation with those that desire to.  He kept coming over to our table to coo at Aiden and tell us what a good baby we had!

Every single person at our table was raving about how good the food was!  I tried the Penne alla Norma, which was eggplant in a superb Sicilian-style tomato sauce over penne and smothered with fresh ricotta.  I couldn't even tell you what the rest of the party had since I was so enthralled with my own plate.  The only thing that looked better than my pasta was the amazing pizzas that kept passing by the table.  We're already planning to go back next weekend to try them!  So fantastic!!

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With all the adventuring this weekend, though, I never even set foot in my sewing room.  I'm hoping to finish up some projects that have been just sitting around for awhile so that I can start fresh with some ideas that have been brewing lately.

First on the list of {planned} finishes for the week is the checkerboard quilt made from the leftover scraps of my niece's birthday dress.

I'm hoping to have the top finished by tomorrow so that I don't have to feel quite as guilty about running out on Wednesday to get a few more coordinating prints for a couple of ideas I've had bouncing around in my head.  

If you're like me and need some inspiration to get moving this morning, pop on over to Patchwork Times to see what's on our fellow quilters' design boards today!

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