Sunday, November 1, 2009

Another Year Down...

We've really been doing this for two years already?

Lately here in Okinawa with our ocean views and intermittent bimonthly pseudo typhoon breezing through, I have been missing a proper fall with orange foliage and crisp air. I find myself thinking about our honeymoon often.

We escaped to Napa Valley in November 07 for a quick glorious getaway of pasta and fried olives, wine drinking, bike riding and wine drinking at the same time, and grape stomping of course...

We stayed at a cozy Victorian Inn called La Belle Epoque, the kind of place where none of the in-room appliances work, but you don't care because they turn down the comforter at night and sneak in fresh baked cookies and port for a bedtime snack. (I'm totally stealing that idea and treating house guests to the same, if you ever come to visit)


Each morning, we woke to gourmet breakfasts, which were brought to our room in an antique Chinese wedding basket. I loved opening each layer and feeling surprised, and I am also totally stealing this idea if I ever open my own B&B some day.



In the late afternoons, we were invited to wine tastings in the cellar. We had to stoop to enter the small door, but once inside we sat and talked with the other guests and the owners, a lovely British couple for hours. Sean got along so well with them in fact that they generously presented us with a nice bottle of wine as a wedding present.


In addition to visiting some of our favorite wineries on our own, the highlight of our trip was a dual purpose Bike riding and wine drinking tour, which I highly recommend if you plan on visiting this area. Great fun to ride around and enjoy the scenery, while stopping at vineyards and sampling wines along the way.


I have always wanted to stomp grapes... and for some odd reason, I was the only person. Am I a little strange?

On a side note, they did make me disinfect my feet before plopping myself in. Here I am having fun sloshing around, but I was secretly afraid the whole time I would slip and fall in the vat of purple sludge.
Here I am pretending to drink a glass of wine and drive the tractor... what fun, but they probably didn't appreciate me climbing on their equipment.

Sean with a late afternoon wine grin... this photograph was taken at our third winery and we needed some time to gather ourselves before hopping on the bikes again for the ride back.



Such a nice afternoon and honeymoon. Some days I can't believe that two years have passed since then...

So friends, I want to know from you-- where did you honeymoon? Any special or funny memory to share? If you're not married, what would be your dream honeymoon?

Don't be shy! Jump in...

15 comments:

K and S said...

happy anniversary!!

Chris and Amy said...

Happy Anniversary! You're honeymoon looked wonderful. I, too, am missing fall.

We honeymooned in Ecuador. It was incredible. We were pretty poor - he had just been commissioned, but hadn't received any paychecks yet. The plane ticket was a little pricey, but once we got down there everything was so cheap! We'd pay $6/night for a room (usually a private room including bathroom, in someone's home). The rooms were always fairly basic, but very clean and the price usually included breakfast. It was awesome.
We're both outdoorsy (I've been called a granola eating tree hugger before:) ) so out favorite part was the 4 days/3night rainforest expedition we went on. We saw amazing waterfalls, visited local natives tribes, swung through the forest on vines, and had the best guide ever. I can't believe that was over 6 years ago - time is flying. Thanks for getting me on the path down memory lane.

♥Chymere♥ said...

awww such a lovely vaca...and you remember every detail to share...time flies doesn't it?

AdventureRob said...

Happy Anniversary! Grape stomping looks like fun!

Kirsten said...

Happy Anniversary! Your honeymoon looks fabulous! I would love to go on a bike riding and wine tasting tour.

Reese said...

Hey Mary,

You look absolutely gorgeous in your wedding dress! The wine stomping is a great idea. Your photo reminds me of Lucille Ball. When I was a kid, I used to watch the "I Love Lucy" TV shows and Lucille Ball was so hilarious in one episode where she and Ethel had to stomp on grapes.

Happy Anniversary!!

Shannon OD said...

Happy Anniversary! The wine stomping sounds like a lot of fun! I would have been game too :-) How was the biking around - I did a bike tour around wineries once too and it got distinctly more difficult as the day went on!

Stacie said...

You know what I love about you guys? You are not afraid to really embrace where ever you happen to find yourselves, and you DO stuff in addition to watching others or listening to others. What a combo! Shayne and I went to Seattle and stayed in a Youth Hostel for a week right on the water and directly underneath a brewery. We were able to hobble down the steps to our private hostel room after sampling the various brews...and we walked and walked around downtown Seattle..had a blast! Happy Anniversary!

Tom D said...

Happy anniversary, you two! Man, where does the time go.

Love the trip down memory lane - Rachel and I went to a fantastic private island called Peter Island for the first half of our honeymoon and stayed in a hut ON the beach about 25' from the water. The island had quite a population of feral cats which we dubbed the Caribbean Swimming Cats after a long wine-enhanced discussion about how they got there. Truly an amazing place with only two permanent residents and plenty of private beaches. Each beach had a little intercom installed and you could call the main desk to have them deliver wine, drinks, food, or a ride back to your cabana.

Our next stop was St. Martin where our favorite excursion was the day we rented a jeep to explore the island and found this fantastic little oasis called Lottery Farm. A bunch of locals had purchased an old plantation and turned it into park - the only rainforest remaining on the island. They also had a chef who had been Oprah's personal chef and was serving absolutely amazing meals in an open pavillion. The "staff" was incredibly friendly and told us where the locals go to see the best sunset on the island. We took off to watch the sunset and then came back for dinner. We ended up staying and eating with them at the "staff" table and learning all of the secrets of St. Martin from the locals point of view. I don't remember how many bottles of wine we went through with them as we spent several hours there, but it was probably one of our fondest memories and gave us so many other things to do on the island while we were there.

Fly Girl said...

Happy anniversary! We just celebrated ours 2 weeks ago. No, you're not strange, grape stomping has always sounded like fun to me as well. And I must say that fried olives, wine tasting and bike-riding sound heavenly as well. We went to Cancun for our honeymoon. We stayed in a resort with lots of naked German tourists lolling about so we headed out on boat tours and a visit to Tulum. But my favorite memory is getting my husband over his fear of water. I have a photo of him running through the Atlantic with waves splashing around him that I keep on my desk.

Mary and Sean said...

Fly Girl,
a resort with naked germans... sounds funny and a little scary. How wonderful that you cured your husband of water fears. He took literally the idea of taking the plunge!

Mary and Sean said...

Chris and Amy,
I would love to go to Ecuador and swing on vines in the forest. I'd love to see those honeymoon pics!

Mary and Sean said...

Staci,
How cool to stay in a hostel , enjoy yourselves in a brewery, and then stumble down at night... sounds so fun! interesting how a lot of our honeymoon stories involve alcohol in some way...

Mary and Sean said...

Tom,
what a fun couple you and Rachel are! Do you ever think about going back there? I want to see pictures of those feral cats one day when we're in your area!

Reese said...

You looked beautiful! Where did you have your wedding? I love the background.

I'm still planning the honeymoon for next year and I still haven't decided yet what we will do. But your honeymoon has inspired me.

Reese

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