The past couple of weekends have been really busy in a good way.
Two weekends ago, I went up to Red Hook, New York, for Freedom Fest 3 (for which Eric's friend created a website). It was basically a mini-wedding. They rented this huge, awesome house with a giant in-ground pool and 12-person indoor hot tub. There was a big white tent, a Grateful Dead cover band, and of course a lot of booze and food. Eric was in charge of cooking over 50 pounds of pork. He really hit it out of the park! I was thinking people would be drunk and not care about food, but everyone was raving about it. He made three different sauces (vinegar-based, mustard-based, traditional) and it was so good. My only regret (and boy do I regret this) was not eating more. I literally had three bites of his sandwich. ARGH. Despite drinking TWO red bulls and vodka, I passed out a little earlier than I wanted, and my stomach was like, 'aaa' so I ended up bringing saltines up to my bed and eating a couple and then trying to fall back asleep. Eric, on the other hand, was up until almost 5am. How, I do not know why..
Normally, the best part of a party is the late, drunken part, but I think my experience was the opposite. Unlike most of the guests who came up in a party bus (about a 2 hour ride from NYC), we got to stay the whole weekend. The anticipation, have a chill hang out Friday night, lots of quality romantic time with the boyfriend, the hungover breakfast the next morning--that was the best. And there's something about sneaking off with your boyfriend when you're in a crowd that feels very romantic. I met a lot of his old friends and hearing everyone compliment him and really enjoy his company made me really proud and happy to be his girlfriend.
Also--we woke up in the morning to NO POWER and thus NO WATER. It was hilarious (in retrospect). I walked into the kitchen, all disheveled looking, and said--"So, there's no power and no water?" and everyone was like, 'Yup." Pretty funny. I also lost my new J. Crew bikini which pissed me off--I looked EVERYWHERE for it--I mean that house was a mess, we spent hours cleaning it even though most of the party was outside, and still no swimsuit. On the plus side, I took advantage of the J. Crew take an extra 20% off final sale to buy 8 pieces of bathing suits (only one matches, and that one I don't really like, because as Eric says (in the negative) it makes me look naked and it also doesn't have the most flattering cut, and instead of sunshine yellow it's MUSTARD yellow. I'm most excited about this suit that is white with blue polka dots on the bottom and a really pretty navy top on top. So cute! Each suit piece was just $7.99!! Even at $64 for the eight pieces, I got one great suit and a few other ones I will be happy to mix and match in PANAMA. Woo!!!
This weekend I was really proud of myself for being super-social. I really enjoy hanging out with my friends but sometimes I have to force myself to do it. I don't want to say it's like medicine, but here goes--the whole making plans part is the medecine and everything else is awesome. When I get anti-social it's so self-reinforcing. I'll start to feel blah and then not be in the mood to hang out with anyone, even though seeing a friend would be EXACTLY the thing to perk me up. With Eric around, I rarely feel lonely during the weekday evenings, but if it's a weekend with just us and nothing but errands and cooking as activities, I'm more likely to get in a blah mood. I love Eric's cooking but he has WAY more stamina than me.
My yoga teacher didn't show up so I decided to call Anna for a last-minute coffee, and we ended up with tea at d'Espresso. I hadn't seen her for awhile so that was good--she's on my commute home so I'm hoping I can meet up with her more after work
Friday at Midnight: My cousin hosted a Midnight Soul Brunch. It was one of the things where the only person I knew there was my cousin, so the party itself was a lot more effort, but I'm so glad I got to hang out with him in a "friend" setting and not a "family" setting. He and Eric seem to get along pretty well, which I also appreciate! We bought growlers of beer at Whole Foods and and were the toast of the party for it. It works like this: You buy a $5 jug at the store, then bring it to fill up--the beers we chose were $5.99 and $7.99--and one of them was a truly awesome pumpkin ale. I LOVE craft beer. I've always been against getting growlers when it's just me and Eric, but I may change my tune - 64 oz is 2 and 2/3 beers each. That's tipsy, but not WASTED (and I only like to have a couple beers generally--If I get drunk it usually involves wine or spirits). The next party we host I definitely think we'll fill them up, especially with the bikes we have now (though I ended up having to carry them in my front basket, which made it very difficult to streer. Eric tried to bungee cord the growlers in a soft cooler case that he attached to his back bike rack, but it TIPPED over--I screamed--but thankfully did not fall to the ground. We were racing on our bikes to get to Whole Foods before it closed at 11pm, and it made me realize how much I miss getting out and partying like I did when I was single. The city is so ALIVE at midnight--the early birds are going home, everyone else is getting ready to party until 4. I love it!! I am not through with bars, time for me to try to go out more.
On Saturday I went with Rita to Greenpoint Open Studios, which was another really fun experience. We've gone to Bushwick Open Studios the past three years (is that possible, or was it two??), which involves getting a map and then checking out where artists work. They display their work, maybe have some wine and pretzels or whatever for you to munch on. The best part is you actually get to talk to the artists, find out what makes their work tick. Some of this work is SO good--like I would buy it if I were more wealthy and had some cash to spare--and each person's work is that much more interesting when you hear what inspired them or how they created it. LOVE. Rita got way drunk, we biked home (perhaps dangerously), and Eric made some awesome chicken parmesan. To die for. He also took a cheesecake out of the oven which we ate the next day. This cheesecake is perfect. No cracks. Firm on the outside and fluffy in the middle. Huge (It used FIVE blocks of cream cheese). A little sour cream-y and lemon-y. It's perfect. So perfect.
On Sunday, we were planning on biking up to my friend Johanna's place in Morningside Heights in the West 120's (9 miles) then going to a Medieval festival in Fort Tryon Park. I didn't realize that the park is actually in the west 190's--another few miles. I think I biked 17, 18 miles that day?? (We ended up biking back to Johanna's, then taking the subway the rest of the way home since it was getting cold and dark). The Medieval festival was fun, something I wouldn't normally do. I was shocked at the scope of the thing--over 40,000 people were there, apparently, and there were tons of enthusiastic but often amateurish performers, people were in cosume, and of course Eric and I had a turkey leg and fried dough. I saw lots of cool instruments, including a player of a hurdy gurdy (thought you would like to hear that, Laura!). Back at Johanna's apartment, she had just moved in but it looked fantastic. She had painted one wall in each room, and it was such a good look. I went to the Benjamin Moore store at lunch so I plan on doing the painting that I have been putting off forever at my apartment, simply because it's been ambiguous about our lease and we'll have to paint it back when we leave.
That's all folks!