Thursday night: We were invited to go to the Ruiz house for a dinner with Jim's friend Steven and his wife Ashley. They made us an incredible meal of Bangors & Mash, a classic English dish, and we enjoyed chatting the night away. It turns out that we actually share the same wedding anniversary, though a year separated! We also had a great time speaking with Ashley about her hometowns--- Lafayette and New Iberia, Louisiana! Jim knew she was from Louisiana.... but wow! Our parting gift from them was a batch of boudin from the freezer!!!! We'll be saving that for when we are homesick for ol' LA.
Friday night: After a tough day at school (trying to shove too much stuff into a Friday after two snow days and before our benchmark test on Tuesday, with no school for MLK day on Monday... can we say eeeeek?!) I came home to change and grab a snack before heading to Floyd with a friend from school. Jim needed the evening to meet up with a study group, prior to his final round of tests this week, so I hit the town with Alia. This was my first time spending time with her and we had fun! She took me to the quaint and artsy town of Floyd. There are lots of artists and musicians from this town and they host many festivals in the summer. I fell in love with the town! It's beautiful and simple.
We went to an artsy store (name escapes me), a candy shop (ooooh the chocolate options!), an art gallery (awesome!), and a restaurant for beer and pizza (yum!) with some of her friends. Then, the real fun began... we went to the country store for some flat-footing! It was quite the experience. People came out of the hollers and woodwork and all joined each other for a night of bluegrass and dancing! When I talked to Jim on the phone I told him... this may be where we end up! I loved it. The culture seemed so well preserved. So natural. So necessary. So untouched. These people came together to express themselves and enjoy the comfort of familiar music and people. Beautiful.
Saturday: Well, not too much to report. We went to scout out a house for next year and really liked it, but discovered that getting out of our lease would be too sticky. We're happy here, but we would have saved a bit of money. There were pros and cons to both situations. Then we went to Panera for our dinner date and then a few hours of work, grading, and studying. We came back and watched Princess and the Frog- such a good movie. We enjoyed seeing the Disney version of New Orleans and hearing the accent of the lightning bug, Raymond.
Sunday: We had WAY too much coffee at Panera the night before, so our day was a bit wiped by the lack of sleep the night before. Jim studied wildly for his standardized patient (SP) today and practiced with me as his patient with a knee injury.
Monday: Jim had his test and SP and I knocked off many to-dos. He doesn't feel too confident on how he did, but he does feel like he did well on the test.
THEN we headed to the Dog Park with Leif. Wow! We just learned about the park from Alia on Friday and decided to take him. He was NOT interested in playing catch or spending any time with his parents. He WAS interested in playing with every single dog. Some liked him and some didn't, but it was good for him to be put in his place and have the opportunity to be social with dogs other than Zeke. It was quite the experience for us watching how he interacted. It was a bit embarrassing for me as I saw how poorly he listened to me in front of other dogs and people. What he does at home definitely doesn't happen when given a new venue! I suppose we'll have to go back some more! He was a muddy mess, but after a bath and drying in the cold on the porch he is one tired pooch.
That's how we like it :)
After a busy weekend, we're a bit tired too. Jim just baked some delicious brownies, so it's time to indulge and relax. I cannot resist the smell much longer!