Virtuous Virginia (Happy Thanksgiving)

Last week, Jay and I travelled to Charlottesville, Virginia to celebrate Thanksgiving. The holiday started on Monday night with a Friendsgiving in Atlanta! We didn’t take many photos but it was so much fun. I am so thankful for all of my friends who support and love me everyday! Willow Dog had to make it into this blog at some point, she’s the best loaf 🙂

The traveling day started when I got off of work at 1pm the day before Thanksgiving. In typical Michelle style, I procrastinated and waited till the last moment to pack for the trip by starting to decorate for Christmas and watching one of my Thanksgiving tradition movies: Saints and Strangers. More than likely, you have not heard of this film. It was originally a mini-series on National Geographic Channel about 4 years ago. It is a historical fiction telling about the first years in the lives of the Pilgrims and the Native American people whose lives were affected by their migration. It is soooo interesting. I like that they give a voice to both parties, the Native peoples and the pilgrims, it’s not one-sided. Anyway, I rented it on Amazon and enjoyed it instead of packing…oops. 

After I watched the series it was time to throw things into a bag and head to the airport. I thought it was going to be super busy and crazy. I asked Jay to remind me to be patient. Fortunately, there was no need, we had a TON of extra time. Once sitting at the gate, I had to watch my other Thanksgiving tradition movie, A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. 

Once we’d boarded the plane it was time to nap 🙂 We arrived in Charlottesville late and drove to Jay’s aunt’s home and crashed after a bit of visiting. The Thanksgiving crew was me, Jay, Jay’s aunt, mom, dad, sister, and two cousins. The house was full of people and fun all weekend.

Thanksgiving Day started promptly at 9am when the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade started. I couldn’t miss my favorite host from The Ladygang, Keltie Knight, hosting the parade on CBS. I watched the entire parade and dog show before it was time to get off the couch and get dressed for supper. The meal consisted of all the classics: turkey, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, stuffing, and more. It was delicious! Here is a picture of our smaller table since the larger table had been filled to capacity and we didn’t fit. 

After supper it was time for FOOTBALL! The Cowboys pulled off a win against the Redskins (insert fireworks here! 😉 ). Then we all played Scrabble and Clue into the wee hours of the morning. It was the perfect day. I wish I would have been allowed into the kitchen to help but they kept shoo-ing me away, so I helped through words of thanks and encouragement. 

Friday morning was a late start but finally we agreed to go visit The Monticello. Thomas Jefferson build The Monticello to be his home and estate in the 1700s. First, we hiked from the parking lot up The Trail to the visitors’ center. It was a wonderful hike, but it was cold. cold. cold. Once we got to the top, we realized that our large party was not all going to be able to tour the home that day, so we split up after a final hike up the hill. (yes, it’s up high!)

Pro tip: buy your tickets early if you plan on visiting during the holidays.

We saw his grave, the grounds, the existing buildings, and took pictures outside the house. I can be honest and say I don’t know how I felt about it. Thomas Jefferson was an amazing man who did fantastic things, but I felt conflicted. Perhaps I’ve listened to Hamilton one too many times or shed a few too many tears over the stories of the slaves he owned. However, I have the utmost respect for him as a person and I am thankful for all he did for our country. His library is one of the best in the world and I can relate to his scientific mind. Overall, I am very glad I got to experience all that was The Monticello. I encourage anyone visiting the area to go and at least experience it. Make up your own mind and have your own experience. Just make sure you’re ready to hike! (If you want the most thorough experience.)

Wardrobe: Maddie Buffalo Plaid Dress by Roolee. This dress is fully lined and very conservative. It was perfect to wear with leggings and my wool coat for warmth! 

After turning into frozen popsicles, Jay and I took a date night at Three Notch’d Brewery. It was sooooo good: the beer, the food, the atmosphere! All 5 stars! 

Saturday was football day. We watched college football ALL. DAY. I have never watched so much football in my life, but I was nice to just chill with family eating tailgating food and left overs. SMU lost…boo. But I got to watch LSU and Texas A&M go into 7 OTs, crazy!!

On Sunday we went to Starbucks, got my Been There Series mug, ate breakfast and walked the UVA campus. The university was built by Jefferson and it still holds a lot of his influences. It was very cool to visit since my Alma Mater, Southern Methodist University, was based off the same style of architecture. I’ll let you decide if you see the resemblance…

UVA Versus SMU:

After walking, watching Jack Ryan movies, and seeing Atlanta United win (!!!) Jay and I boarded the flight home. Overall, it was a fantastic first visit to Virginia. I cannot wait to go back! Happy Thanksgiving! I am so thankful for each and every one of you reading this, thanks for your support. All of my love. 

Perhaps you hate Thanksgiving? Perhaps you hate dog shows? You do you, boo. 




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