Photo Bucket: June 2106

Juston on a sunny rooftop in Florence.

Juston on a sunny rooftop in Florence.

There’s nothing like recovering from a whirlwind trip to Italy like running the roads back home. Juston was fully immersed into his summer job in Wilmington only couple days after we arrived back in country. My girl Daphne was happily whining at my return and we were attempting to get back into the (a?) routine.

While I was away, someone turned up the thermostat to seven degrees hotter than the sun here in NC and we were all suffering the scorch of summer. Hard to believe I spent two weeks in cool and breezy Italia only a short bit ago. What a difference an ocean makes.

Orchids in the conservatory at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden.

Orchids in the conservatory at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden.

My 29th birthday was celebrated again. In fact, it was the 17th anniversary of my 29th birthday.  Funny enough, I’ve had as many anniversary celebrations of my 29th birthday as I had anniversaries in my marriage. Right now I’m in-between anniversary milestones but I’m really looking forward to my 25th anniversary (you know, the silver one). By then I expect my head to be capped in silver and that’s better than some pretty silverware that you’ll never use, but still have to polish.

Azure skies frame the Belmont Abbey in Belmont, NC

Azure skies frame the Belmont Abbey in Belmont, NC

I’m not gonna lie, turning 30 was awful and I still haven’t recovered from my Meg Ryan When Harry Met Sally hysterical meltdown draped over the arm of the sofa all those years ago. Strange. Even stranger is that Juston and I share the same birthdate and he’s 21 and now his mama is 29 with a bit of experience, poor kid. Weird how that works, although I’ll admit math was never my sport.

Filet of beef and truffle fries at Webb Custom Kitchen

Filet of beef and truffle fries at Webb Custom Kitchen

The birthday weekend began with a trip to the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden and a tour of Belmont Abbey. My birthday was celebrated noshing on a tender filet and glorious, decadent truffle fries under the glitz of the arched ceiling and warm glow of the amber sconces at Webb Country Kitchen, a glamorous former movie theater in Gastonia.

A glamorous movie theater is now a chic restaurant in Gastonia.

A glamorous movie theater is now a chic restaurant in Gastonia.

The Duke Energy Building

The Duke Energy Building lit up in rainbow colors to show support of the Orlando club shooting victims.

The weekend continued with a moonlight walk around Gastonia and a Food Truck Chow Down in South End, Charlotte. Oh, and I was taken hostage by the Emperor’s Royal Guard, hung out with some Storm Troopers at HeroesCon, and celebrated my release from the Empire with a mimosa at Fahrenheit.

The Tin Kitchen serving up food at the food truck

The Tin Kitchen serving up food at the Food Truck Chow Down in South End, Charlotte.

The Emperor's Guard

The Emperor’s Guard

Taken hostage by the Empire....

Taken hostage by the Empire….

Storm Troopers and Kylo Ren at HeroesCon in Charlotte.

Storm Troopers and Kylo Ren at HeroesCon in Charlotte.

Kicking back and enjoying the city view with a mimosa.

Kicking back and enjoying the city view with a mimosa.

Yes, it was an outstanding weekend-long birthday celebration. Way more gooder than number 30, no doubt. I’m hoping next year will be this good.

Charlotte city view from the rooftop at Fahrenheit.

Charlotte city view from the rooftop at Fahrenheit.