5.09.2015

Georgia, Check!

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I knew very little about Georgia before our visit, and not too much more after. Then, I visited the Culture of Georgia page on Wikipedia and read up on the state I had just visited. Wikipedia, always saving the day! (It's never too late to learn where Jeff Foxworthy and Julia Roberts are from.)

When we heard our friends were getting married in Athens, we were excited. At that time, I was very pregnant, yet already delighted that our baby's first wedding would be that of Adam and Eleanor. These two...
We later learned babies fly free until they are two. So, we're on a mission to fly as much as possible before we have to spend money on yet another Viggo-related expense. Pricey, pricey kiddo!

Being the planner that I am, I booked our flight and hotels months before the bride and groom, then anxiously waited for them to do the same. (They were still getting married, right? I kept asking to make sure.) But, it was tricky to plan activities with a seven-month-old in tow, and the husband wisely suggested we don't. We arrived in Atlanta with little on the agenda -- zoo? fried chicken? parks?

We ate fried chicken the first day and were extremely proud of that accomplishment. The next day, the weather was really nice and we felt only mildly jet-lag, so we did the zoo. We were on a roll.
This mural stole our hearts.
Roast Beef from the General Muir, where we had a run-in with Guy Fieri
Then things slowed down as we ended up at The Optimist. The plan was to grab a quick bite (oysters) before dinner. But, after feeding Viggo, and having him fall soundly asleep, we decided to extend our stay, and enjoyed course after course of delicious seafood. Three hours later, we were ready to call it a night, hence no park.
The next day, we headed to Helen to meet our friends. Helen is a German-themed town near the Blue Ridge Mountains. Our friend insisted we visit before heading to Athens. We listened to her. Then, as soon as we met up, she apologized. Apparently, Helen was really cool to visit when she was like eight-years-old. Not so much if you're in your 30s. But, we made the best of it, by staying out of Helen, and exploring Unicoi State Park nearby. We hiked to two waterfalls in two days and Viggo was thrilled to be outside, strapped to his dad who did all the hard work for him. I was envious.
 Which way is OUT of Helen???
 Ann Ruby Falls
Dukes Creek Falls

On our last day in Helen, Viggo learned to scream. Scream with no purpose. He made this intense, high-pitched shrieking sound that was reminiscent of a hatching baby dino. Delightful in the wild. Less delightful at the arrival dinner we attended that night. We went to sleep concerned about our little dino embarrassing us at the wedding ceremony. Watch your manners boy! This is the South. Luckily, Viggo didn't misbehave. We ended up sitting in the baby section, where parents were ready to make a run should their kid try anything funny.
Lemony shrimp and grits with arugula. One of my favorite dishes of the trip.
Focus!
Baby relief support system.

The wedding was beautiful. I cried. If you know me, you know that's big. But, the vows, our friends, their families, everything was just so touching, I really couldn't help myself.
Wearing a bow tie, surrounded by ladies. That's the life.

Lots of drinks and plates of food later, Viggo fell asleep. I tried dancing with a sleeping baby strapped on to me, it didn't work so well. But, it was a magical night nevertheless. And I'm glad we were able to be there with all of our friends, and have Viggo experience his first wedding.

On our way back to LA, we had the pleasure of staying with a friend I hadn't seen since my college days and were treated to more of that Southern hospitality, something there's no shortage of in Georgia (along with water.)
Delicious last meal of squid ink pasta with shrimp in Decatur.
 Viggo tries his first strawberry on his last day in Georgia.

Although we enjoyed our travels, after six long days away with a baby, the best part was getting home and having my parents cook us a delicious meal while we gave Viggo a real bath (he was tired of showers!) and put him to sleep in his own bed, where he could do his crazy flips all night long.
You'll appreciate my sense of humor later, little guy.

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