until Ed and I spend the most amazing day on Mt Tam of our lives :)
(fair warning - this post is very wedding filled. I know this is a running blog, and this weekend did include running, which I will talk about soon, but for now, this is just a documentation of a romantic, wonderful weekend :) )
Ed and I were up spending a romantic overnight trip at Mountain Home Inn to take care of some pressing issues.
Who knew taking care of issues could be so relaxing and fun?
After we checked into the inn (a new room - #4, which we had always wanted to try),
we headed upstairs to try the first of what would be many complimentary delights - a glass of wine on the deck.
After enjoying the cooling evening air, we headed back to get fancied up, and then returned for the official start of our tasting.
We were given many, many choices. We had to decide on cocktail hour treats, 2 appetizers, 3 entrees, and wine.
These were some of our favorites:
Cheese board - we knew that this would be a definite. It's displayed on a huge slab of redwood and includes fabulous goat's cheese, local blue cheese, another good one I can't remember, candied pecans, curried walnuts, and grapes (with, of course, bread). Yum!
Our salad choice is this great hazelnut and feta(?) salad with tangerines. Very light and summery. We also picked a fabulous carrot ginger soup that was heavenly.
All the food is seasonal and local, which makes it fabulous.
As far as entrees, I had a very surprising favorite.
Balsamic marinated grilled portobello mushroom with a creamy cheese polenta and asparagus. Now, I have never had a portobello and generally hate mushrooms. But, this was amazing! I might even order this as the wedding - seriously.
In addition, we're also getting grilled salmon with mashed potatoes (not the potato pictured) and a fennel salad that Ed loved.
Finally, we're getting a petite filet with a cabernet sauce, spinach, and fingerling potatoes.
Wine wise, also surprising myself, we're getting chardonnay! It was really lovely. We picked a cab to, of course, go with the filet.
And, even though we're not having one of their desserts, they still brought out molten chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream. Wow.
While we stuffed ourselves, we managed to ask our wedding coordinator everything we could think of, and now feel like everything is totally ready for us to be married :). I'm excited to know that a lot of my ideas about the wedding will actually work, and that all the big decisions seem to have been made.
After trying 4 appetizers, 2 soups, 2 salads, 4 entrees, 4 wines, and dessert, we stumbled downstairs to change and find a flashlight.
We decided the best course of action after all that food was a night hike. I was a bit nervous (of course - mountain lions and I continue to be adversaries), especially because our flashlight wasn't exactly well working.
Still, the night air was beautiful and it was gorgeous watching the night lights brightening far down below and the silhouettes of the mountain and trees above.
We wandered around on firetrails that were near the inn, ending up going by the fire station.
We tried to use the flashlight to little success, and ended up back down at the parking lot across from the inn on a bench, just sitting and watching darkness fall over the valley below.
Finally, we made our way back to the inn.
We had learned during our tasting that the inn actually has board games - including national park scrabble, and decided that that would be a fun way to spend our evening.
As we began playing the manager, Bryson, who was amazing, brought us chocolate infused complimentary port and lit us a fire in the fireplace. Seriously, wonderful service. It is so nice being wined and dined :).
Finally, it was time to turn in, still very full and sleepy from so much delicious drink.
The next morning, we had a lovely relaxing start to our day, reading in the room (and drinking 3 cups of coffee! I never drink coffee) and enjoying the deck.
Around 10, we realized that we finally needed to start our day, so we headed up for our breakfast.
After a hearty meal of french toast (me) and eggs and potatoes (him), we read for a bit and then checked out, right on time for meeting our photographer at 11.
I was really looking forward to this, as we chose this photographer through the internet, and hadn't actually met previously. Ed found the team, and we loved their website, which featured photos from our wedding location. I was still a little nervous, because photographs are so important to me.
Well, our fears were completely put at rest. Vita Hewitt was great! I had made up a list of photos that we wanted, which she really appreciated. As we went through the list, she made notes and asked good questions. We knew it was a good fit when she told us that her husband would probably be taking the camera sometimes because he is just so in love with this mountain and loves to shoot here. We also asked for no silly shots or fisheye shots (there is a special lens for these). She is also not a fan of either silly shots and doesn't even have a fisheye lens because she really dislikes it - perfect match!
After going through the list and making sure she understood it all, we headed up to the point to get a feel for the ceremony pictures. She let us know where she would be during the ceremony, checking with us to make sure that we were okay with her plans. She's even planning to bring a ladder for after the ceremony to get a shot of the whole group.
It was certainly a beautiful day up at the point.
She really was making sure she had a good feel for us as a couple and I think she and her husband will do such a great job.
After the point, we stopped at another place to see if we could find somewhere to take photos in the redwoods. We found one potential spot off of Bootjack, but the redwoods were sparse.
Driving back to the inn, we spotted another grove that we decided to revisit later.
It was a great meeting and I feel so excited about having this important part of the wedding set.
The rest of our day was spent (of course) up on the mountain. But, I'm going to save that story for another post! For now, this will give you an idea of what the day was like: