Hello Virginia!

Last Wednesday August 11th, Jake and I packed up all our belonging into a large Penske truck.  You never really realize how much stuff you have until you have to move it.  We have moved before, but we always had a bit of a layover between places, so we could take our time.  Last time we moved, it was right across the street.  Moving from Michigan to Virginia was a little different, to say the least.

We were very fortunate to have the help of my parents who drove a 26-foot Penske truck full of our things and pulled a trailer with Jacob’s truck behind it..  We spent two days driving, stopping to stay the night at a hotel.  It was an especially long trip since we were following my parents in the Penske moving at about 55 MPH, but it was a beautiful drive!  We arrived at our new place near Midnight Thursday August 12th.  We definitely made some necessary starbucks stops!

The first night was spent sleeping on the floor and over the next few days we unpacked.  My parents left us to get things organized on the second day while they explored colonial Williamsburg and Yorktown.

Now, Williamsburg is much different than the small town of Mount Pleasant, Michigan.  For one, there are so many more people, which means more traffic!  Secondly, the organization of the the roads is much different than the basic grid system I’m used to.  There are lots of narrow twisty roads that lead to busier wider twisty roads.  Nothing makes much sense right now but I’m sure we will figure it out.

Since we didn’t have much food around we went out to breakfast at the local Cracker Barrel.  Jake loves it, but it’s not really my kind of food.  At least the breakfast isn’t bad, you can’t go too wrong with eggs and pancakes.  I got mine with blackberries! YUM! Plus, my mom took one of the best pic’s of us that I’ve seen in years!

Jacob and Michelle

Shopping-wise, we wont be disappointed here.  There is a huge outlet mall that, as soon as I get a job, I will be frequenting.  That was actually the nice thing about living in Mount Pleasant as a poor college student, there were no such temptations.

Since our new place is larger than our last apartment, I knew right away we would need to buy a few things, like curtains.  Luckily, we found a Target and a Bed Bath and Beyond not too far away.  Yay for my favorite stores!

I’m not sure I’ve mentioned this before, but the reason we have moved to VA is so that Jake can attend graduate school at William & Mary’s Virginia Institute of Marine Science.  He is pursuing a degree in Oceanography.  We are renting a condo in Williamsburg which is about 25 minutes away from his school and the Chesapeake Bay.  I’m pretty excited about our new place.  It is much nicer than anything we have ever rented before.

However, there is one minor problem.  Okay, it’s a major problem if your a nutritionist foodie with a food blog. Brace yourself…

The refrigerator is broken!

Gasp! Yep, we have had NO refrigerated food for more than a week!

I know, terrible right!  That means no Fage Greek Yogurt, no Soy Milk in my oatmeal, no leftovers, no fresh salsa, no fresh or frozen veggies ready to snack on, and no hummus.

So what have we been doing?  Eating lots of carbs mostly.

I miss cooking.

I’ve also been spending a lot of time at Panera.  Our internet was finally hooked up a few days ago, but until then Panera had become my home away from home.  It was my source of coffee, veggies and internet.  Since it wasn’t too far away, I spent at least three hours there everyday.  The best part, was this new tomato basil salad they have.  It is actually quite similar to my Panzanella Salad.  The whole salad is pretty large, so I ordered half of it with a cup of low fat vegetable soup.

Our landlord is sending someone over Monday to fix the fridge, but I couldn’t wait that long to cook something.  This beautiful kitchen was begging to be used!

So since the weather had been a bit rainy, and you know how rainy weather makes me want to bake, out came the flour, yeast, water and salt.  I mixed them together following another King Arthur Recipe and just in time for dinner yesterday out of the oven came these wonderful baguettes!

I still need to work on my technique, but for a first time baguette I impressed myself! Went perfectly with a freshly sliced tomato and some olive oil!

I will most certainly make this recipe again!  I used All Purpose flour instead of bread flour because it’s what I had.  I would love to attempt making whole grain baguettes some time!

Next time I post, I’m going to tell you all about my new grocery store! I’m pretty excited about it!  And if my fridge is up and running, you should be looking forward to some great food too!  Until then, I want to know, have you ever been to Williamsburg or even Virginia?  How did you like it? And, have you ever had to live without a refrigerator?  What did you eat?

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8 thoughts on “Hello Virginia!

  1. I’m impressed with your writing and baking skills! :)
    Your kitchen looks beautiful!
    The Panera salad looks pretty good! I’ll have to try that the next time I’m there. ;)
    Love,
    ~Aunt Chris

  2. Michelle! So glad you are enjoying your new digs. We already miss you bunches at work, but know you will do great things in this next phase of life. Thank goodness for blogging…its such a great way to keep in touch! :) ~Kati

    • Hi Kati! Thanks! We really are enjoying VA so far! I hope things are going well for you and Jess! I miss volunteering with you two!

      PS. I will let you know if I will be needing a letter of rec very soon.

  3. Hey Michelle!
    I’m so glad you are liking Virginia and getting settled! I can’t say I’ve ever had to live w/out a fridge, but I have been to Virginia before. I have family there. I can’t remember the town we were in, it started with a B, but it was about an hour from D.C., because that’s where my uncle works. We were close to Manassas, if you’re into the Civil War thing. We went to the Manassas National Battlefield Park, it was pretty neat, and there are like 10 different markers in the area outside the park you can drive to then walk around. We went to one spot and took the walk, which was a decent hike through the woods. We were unaware there were ticks until after the fact, so there we stood in the parking lot (thankfully it was empty and surrounded by trees) practically stripped down to our underwear searching for ticks. My brother found one in his belly button several days later! So watch out for ticks if you go hiking! Our family said they are in the area, I think it’s worse when it’s hotter. We also visited another battle field when we were there, called New Market. It was in the Shenandoah Valley, which is a beautiful area. O, and we also visited Luray Cavers (underground cavers) which was really close to New Market. They were awesome! If you get the chance to visit, you definitely should. I’ve never seen anything like it!

    It was super hot when we visited Virginia, but I really liked it out there. There’s so much history, and history is one of my favorite topics. It felt weird to stand on the same ground as the soldiers who we only read about in books.

    Robert and I also drove through Pennsylvania, and it really is very beautiful! Not what you would expect driving east! Anyway, I hope you are having fun!

    Emily

    • Hey Emily! Thanks for sharing! I am so not a history buff, but I wish I was! I hope that living here will give me the chance to re-learn things I should already know ;) We haven’t been to any of the Colonial Williamsburg sites yet, but I’m looking forward to it! I’ll have to look into the places you mentioned too! Thanks for the tip about the ticks! One of the 3 main things I want to accomplish while we live here is to go hiking. I think we will wait until it is not so hot though! I also want to visit DC and Virginia Beach.

      The drive through PA is amazing! I visited once in High School and loved it! I actually applied to an internship there because it is so beautiful.

      So far I really like it here, but, as I’m sure you can relate, it is going to take some getting used to before it feels like home! The job search is really going to get serious starting tomorrow :) Hope you are having fun in NY!

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