Autumn Adventures

Here's to freedom,
cheers to art.
Here's to having an excellent adventure
and may the stopping never start.
//Jason Mraz

Now that its officially been over a full month of fall, I have some random fall adventures and activities that I wanted to post about and catch up on. It's often these random and/or smaller adventures that make life interesting and make memories that we can laugh at or look back on fondly. The first weekend in October, our "Uncle Pat" came to visit so my Mom, Aunt and myself went to dinner with him at one of our favorite restaurants, J. Gilbert's. It is a really yummy steak house and we love to go there any chance we get, which is few and far between because it is pretty pricey. Pat sent us Hawaiian bouquets and leis earlier that day as he is Hawaiian and his Aunt owns a flower farm, Paradise Flowers on Maui. They are always so beautiful and fragrant and I was extra excited to get this one because in less than a month I will be heading to Hawaii on vacation! It was really nice of him and definitely got me in the Hawaiian spirit.
At dinner, I got the Steak and Frites with blue cheese butter which was AMAZING. I literally ate every bite. The meat is always cooked exactly to your liking and sweet potato fries are one of my favorites.
Mom had the crab cakes, which she really enjoyed as well!
Here is the whole gang! Thanks for a great dinner Uncle Pat!
After dinner I had to head up to Mass as I had a wedding on the Cape the next day. Before weddings I always like to take the morning to relax and unwind and go for a seaside drive if I can. I grabbed a bagel and a coffee and made a stop by Scituate Lighthouse as it was a beautiful, sunny and warm morning. Here are some crappy iPhone photos from that lovely morning! The lighthouse is so old and beautiful and overlooks all of Scituate Harbor and the coastline.

The Lightkeepers Inn is on the left and is the cutest and most charming little house where the light keeper lives. Dream job anyone?

Later that week Nick and I had a spontaneous fall day and woke up early with no plans. I decided to take him on the Glastonbury-Rocky Hill Ferry across the CT river to get breakfast Sandwiches at this riverside stand. It is really cool as it's just a platform pulled by a tugboat, and is actually the oldest continuously operating ferry in the country, having started way back in 1655 when it was just a raft pushed across using poles. It's just so random that it's funny, and the whole ride only lasts about five minutes but saves you about 15 in drive time.
Pearl's first ferry ride....
We had the whole boat to ourselves both there and back and the attendant was really nice. He even offered to take a few pics of us and surprisingly I didn't even ask him to do so.

The Connecticut River!
So we get across the river and to my surprise, the shack restaurant has a new name. And double surprise, the new owner no longer serves breakfast. Boo! That was the best thing going for them and it was a really fun morning adventure to take the ferry to get breakfast sammies. It is BYOB now which is nice though, so maybe we will have to ride over for lunch someday to try it.

Instead we had to drive about a mile down the road to Mitchell's Diner. I had a really yummy egg BLT on a croissant and Nick had a spinach and bacon omelet.

I take this same picture of Nick holding his mug at every diner we go to. However this one I kind of failed because usually we are supposed to have the menu under his hands but forgot this time... oh well!
After breakfast it was tome to take the ferry back over to G-bury, and finally the rain had cleared up a bit.

We then took a drive to the Old Cider Mill to grab some pumpkins and to see the animals at the petting zoo. I am obsessed with animals, so any chance I get to see them I am sure to take!

I literally LOVE how goats stand on everything. And they didn't disappoint that day as one of them was proudly standing on his log.
That is until he saw us coming with food and bolted for the fence.
The goats are so cute, if I ever own a farm I am definitely having a slew of goats. They are so funny and have so much character.

Lean in, ladies!! They even smiled for the camera.
As with the ferry, this cider mill is the oldest continuously running cider mill in the country! Definitely a historical landmark that you should be sure to check out if you are ever in the area.
We picked out a cute orange and white pumpkin to decorate my stoop at home. Perfectly round!

Aside from apple cider, they serve hot apple fritters on weekends during the fall which are amazing as well! I always make sure to stop and and grab a half dozen for myself the family.

After that, as you saw in THIS POST, Nick and I had a great time making our home made Apple Pie Moonshine! It was such a fun and spontaneous fall day with lots of activities to get us in the spirit. We are both summer people but this day really helped ease us into the fall mode.
That Saturday I had my last October wedding on the Cape and it was definitely one of the best all year! Such a nice and easy going couple, which always makes all the difference. They had some cute Cape/Nautical details and it was a great day for the bride and groom. 

On Sunday we had planned a family day trip to Gouveia Vineyards in Wallingford, CT. Unfortunately Nick couldn't be there because he had work, but it ended up being a really nice day with the family and the weather was perfect.

My brother and his girlfriend Lindsay, they just celebrated their 8 year anniversary! Love these two.

The vineyard sits atop a hill and the foliage was really vibrant and beautiful. We all did some wine tastings and got some bottles to split. It is great to support local small businesses so we totally didn't mind getting five ;-).
My mom and aunt had made some hors d'oeuvres to share and we all a great time snacking and laughing together as a family. The vineyard was so packed and by the time we left there wasn't a single open table or chair! Looks like everyone had the same idea we did.
They have both indoor and outdoor seating, as well as comfy couches and fireplaces inside for those colder winter visits. It is a great winery and really pretty, one of the best in CT for sure!

 The fam!

Cheers to a great a day with the people I love!
The next weekend my Aunt and Uncle were here all the way from Colorado for my cousin's parents weekend at Yale. We hardly get to see them as they live so far away so it was SO nice to have a dinner planned with everyone to catch up and just have a fun time as a family. We all met up at a cool restaurant called Woodbridge Social down in the New Haven area. We had a drink at the bar before sitting down for dinner and it was really nice to finally be able to introduce Nick to my Aunt and Uncle. He had met my cousin Hank a couple times prior and on our trip to maine last year but I was so glad he got to meet them! Nick ordered a beer creation that was half pumpkin beer (Weyerbacher), half Guinness! The bartender was quite enamored with Nick his beer choice, so we make sure to still give him a hard time about it to this day ;-).

So happy to have all of the family in one place! We really missed my other cousin Dwight but he is down in Georgia enjoying his first semester of college so it's understandable why he couldn't make it. Thanks to my Aunt Deb for most of these pics from the night as well!
My Mom and her sisters! Really happy to see them all together as it doesn't happen often.

We had a great time at dinner catching up and telling stories, and the restaurant and food were really good! We definitely want to go back again soon.
We didn't want the fun to stop so we all decided to head across the street to the bowling alley to play a couple rounds!

There was a little wait to get lanes so we hung out in the bar for a bit and played some pool. Linds and I had an embarrassing loss to Hank and Mike, who are pretty much undefeated at anything they play together. One of these days!!

My Aunt Deb! Oh how we wish they lived closer! I really miss not being able to see her often, but it was great to catch up and fill her in on my life lately.

Clearly having a really fun time at bowling! It was even black light bowling, which made it extra fun.

My cousin Hank and his wonderful girlfriend Kat! They make such a nice couple and she is really a great girl. Looking forward to getting to know her more!
 Auntie with her kids! Just missing Dwight...

 Me and my Auntie Izzy!

We also discovered my hidden talent for bowling! I ALMOST was able to beat Hank! Next time... 

My "STRIKE" dance....
SO close! We had so much fun with the family and didn't want the night to end. Hopefully it won't be as long until we are all together again. We love having my cousin here in CT for school, it's been awesome!
The next weekend we decided to make a day trip to Salem, Mass on Sunday to see all of the Halloween decorations and to do some spooky witch events. Mike, Linds, Nick and I headed up around noon and had a really fun day exploring the historic town.
We stopped in at a cool hipster bar called Gulu Gulu Cafe for a nice fall beer and to warm up from the cold air!

 We tried a delicious maple bourbon as well! I don't usually like bourbon but this wasn't half bad!

After a drink we continued to just walk around the town and window shop. We stopped in a bunch of stores and saw a whole bunch of people dressed up and street actors everywhere. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays, as much as I don't like being scared, but I love all of the decor and halloween spirit!
Nick was looking for a peacoat at the army store... sadly the only option was this size 62 Regular that fit both of us! We could have saved money and shared a coat, but he wanted his own so we passed it up.

Ass-less chaps with tye-dye and UGGS.... I have now seen it all folks.
The Salem Witch Museum! I think all of the witch history is really neat. Creepy, but very interesting for sure. One look at my webbed toe and I am sure I would've been hung from the Oaks!

We stopped by an old cemetery after dark. It was really eerie and I did not want to stay for long. Especially after the first photo I took of a grave, the guy died on my birthday! Too much of a coincidence for comfort if you ask me, I was outta there!

Seeing all of the old headstones and reading/wondering how they died was pretty creepy. 

Get me outta here!!

After the cemetary we decided to wait in line for a Haunted house- Count Orlok's Nightmare Gallery. It was decently scary but the line was just SO LONG of a wait and the haunted house itself was no more than literally three minutes! The hour wait didn't justify the short time inside. But I still screamed like a little school girl and was squeezing the life out of Nick's hand.

Monsters scaring me every chance they get! I guess they can just tell I am the most easily scared of the bunch. 
After the haunted house we had to head back as it was getting late and we had a long drive home. We took one last walk through some of the old alley ways and got to see some of the old colonials and houses where the witches surely had lived.

We had a great day and a lot of fun. I want to go back when we have more time to explore and see some of the other witch related sites and events. There is so much to do it's more than you can fit into a day. In terms of blogging I am almost caught up with October! There was so much packed into the month I still have at least two more posts to go. Next up I will be recapping our trip to VT over the last full weekend of October, and then I'll follow up with all of the Halloween weekend festivities after that so definitely stay tuned as I will be trying to get caught up within the next week. Thanks for reading!

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