Birthday at The Winery

What better way to celebrate my mother’s birthday than at the Williamsburg Winery.

My parents live in Williamsburg, Virginia, a place that many people visit for the shopping.

I visit for family.  And history.  And the food and wine, of course.

We started with a visit to the tasting room where Calvin, the young but knowledgeable wine steward, not only introduced the wines but offered the history behind the labels and names.

This bottle of Acte 12 of 1619 was named after the Act that was passed by the 1619 House of Burgesses requiring all male households in Virginia to grow ten vines of the imported vinifera grapes from Europe.

How’s that for encouraging the growth of the wine industry in the new country?

How fortunate am I to have such incredible parents?

Once done with our tasting, we enjoyed a delicious lunch at the Gabriel Archer Tavern.

Gabriel Archer was one of the first settlers to set foot on land near the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay in late April 1607, moving on to Jamestown in August that same year.

We were having so much fun that I barely pulled out the camera, and the images in this post are a mix of camera and phone.

I wish I’d had more time to shoot the scene,

but really, I was just glad to have been able to spend the day with my parents and celebrate my mother.

Happy Birthday, Mom!

Military Brats Reunite at Jefferson Vineyards

If you lived in the Northern Virginia area in the 1970s, you may very well have been part of a military family.  My father, a 30 year Naval Officer, was stationed at The Pentagon during that time and we lived in a neighborhood that, while not a military base, was full of other Navy, Army, Marine and Air Force families.  Being raised a Military Brat  is like being a part of a unique culture that only those who lived it understand. 

Military families move frequently and friendships, often made quickly, endure.  Many of the friends of my parents were like Aunts and Uncles to me and I remember them as fondly as I do some of my own extended family members.

This past Sunday, two former military families (Navy and Air Force) met for a reunion at Jefferson Vineyards in Charlottesville, Virginia.  The Buchwald and Maddox families became friends in the 1970s and have shared many of life’s good, and challenging, moments.

Virginia boasts over 220 wineries and has become known for wines made from the Viognier and Cabernet Franc grapes.  The Charlottesville area, a central location for most  members of the 2 families, has over 25 wineries.  We chose to meet at Jefferson Vineyards.





Fittingly, our celebration was held one day after Mr. Jefferson’s 270th birthday.


It was a gorgeous spring day and some of the flowers were starting to bloom (at least those that survived the snow storm last week were blooming).



The trees were starting to leaf as well.


We enjoyed a private tasting followed by a picnic lunch.


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I’m confident that it wasn’t just the wine that had us laughing.



And the wine casks (which my sister kept calling caskets) provided excellent seating for group pictures.




It was the perfect place for a reunion!  Check it out if you’re in the area!



And no … I didn’t ride the bike … wine and motorcycles just don’t mix … at least for me!

This last photo is from the Jefferson Vineyards website.