We were feelin’ a night out yesterday since we’d been in all day.  Well, that’s not true–I did my usual Saturday morning routine of: eating a huge breakfast, hitting up Wegmans around 8 a.m. (before it gets busy), then swimming at the gym and returning home at 11, and Andrew was at the office from 10-3–but when it was pushing 4 p.m. and both of us were still in sweats, we needed a change!

We headed out for a visit at the in-laws’ before stopping at Taste for coffee (decaf for me), then running some errands at the Verizon store (clear display covers for my phone–post coming soon to show you my new case!) and shovels at Lowe’s.  You know, because we live in Buffalo now and it snows here…a lot.  We’ve gotten by so far this year on a metal dirt shovel and we’ve been lucky to have a mild winter.  (I think God is smiling on us transplants since we don’t have a garage for our cars–NOT fun.)

Anyway, we ended up at Zebb’s, a sport-bar-like place I drive by all the time and that Andrew frequented a bit in high school.

It’s a bar and grill and they’re known for their burgers.  They also have entree’s, wings (of course) and sandwiches.

We asked to sit in the bar area and were seating long before some who had arrived before us.  We also had some of the best service I’ve had in awhile, if not ever.  Colin was awesome.

We both ended up with Blue Moons (the pint for me, the tall for Andrew) and a sample of Sam Adam’s Cherry Wheat because, well, I wouldn’t be ‘me’ if I didn’t have a sample of something.  The cherry wheat was good, but not as good as a Blue Moon.

We got wings as an appetizer.  I swear, since moving here, I’ve eaten more wings in these few months than I ever have before in my life.  This is, of course, both good and bad.  Good for my sense of ‘culture’ and assimilation into my new surroundings; bad for my hips.  And thighs.  And arteries.

I saw the “ZebbOriginalWings” and immediately wanted them, but the bleu cheese turned Andrew off, of course.  Awesome Colin said we could split an order and I eagerly anticipated their arrival.

And yes, they were everything I hoped for, and more.  They had enough “buffalo” flavor to fulfill that ubiquitous ‘wing taste,’ but with a kick of something more.  Not spicy, just really flavorful.  The bleu cheese wasn’t a dominant flavor, and Andrew was brave enough to give it a try.  We just might be ordering those next time…we both ended up saving the sauce to dip our fries!

Andrew had ordered a medium on the spicy-scale when we thought we were sharing, but Colin got the impression Andrew wanted a bit more heat than me, so he went ahead and bumped Andrew’s up to HOT…  Talk about great service!  Andrew enjoyed his wings, but they were no Pasquale’s.

Hockey is KING here, in case you didn’t know, and a tournament was on TV.  Really, all sports are pretty big here–the Bills Stadium is just a mile or so from Zebb’s–and watching football and hockey is very much a part of life here in Buffalo.  Guess I’m going to have to get a t-shirt…

Zebb’s is known for their burgers and topping bar (think Fuddrucker’s), and I’m a junkie for anything a restaurant is “known for,” so I went with the smallest burger and added cheese.  I mean, doesn’t cheese just make it?  A burger without cheese, to me, isn’t worth eating.

Speaking of eating…  I was good and only ate two of my wings in order to save room (and calories!) for my burger and fries.  But the angelic behavior ended there; I DEMOLISHED my burger and fries, with mayo, no less!  I must have been hungry.  And honestly, the burger wasn’t THAT good.  Definitely not good enough to eat it all.  Next time, I’ll stick to wings and fries 🙂

Meanwhile, it was snowing outside:

When we entered, there wasn’t really any snow on the ground.  By the time we left, it was blizzarding enough for us to have to drive slowly and there was about an inch or so on the ground.  It may sound odd, but I love that about living here–I love that you can go see a movie and come out to a completely different scene than when you entered.  (This, I’m sure, will get old after awhile.  But for now, it makes me smile.)

We’re going out, again, tonight to meet friends at Pearl Street (yay!), which might just mean more indulgent food for yours truly…  Good thing I did a tempo run this morning before church!

a hot tub AND a fireplace

We checked into our hotel last night after having dinner with Andrew’s parents.  It’s weird staying at a hotel in East Aurora.  I’ve never had to before.  I probably never will again.  Technically, I suppose we don’t really HAVE to right now, but the company is paying for it.  Sweet.  And it makes this house-hunting trip a little more like a vacation than just a visit to family.

Anyway, we didn’t get a room at the swanky Roycroft Inn since they didn’t have availability for all the nights we needed, but we got something BETTER.  Isn’t it neat when God does that?

There is one other hotel in East Aurora, the Hampton Inn, and we got upgraded.  (I assume because there is NO ONE here.  I mean, come on, it’s East Aurora.  Unless it’s Roycroft Festival weekend or Moog has a giant conference, who comes here?)

Our room is awesome.  Actually, it’s a suite.  Our sitting room with micro-fridge, desk, couch and TV:

The goodies we bought last night at Tops, which is like a (slightly) nicer Kroger.  Definitely more selection at Tops, so I’m excited about that!  Must have a banana pre-run!

Luna bars for my afternoon snack.  Again, Tops had way more flavors than I’d ever seen at the commissary, Trader Joe’s or Kroger.

I splurged (or, rather, our relocation people did) for Chobani.  Love it.  Hate paying more than a DOLLAR for a cup of yogurt.

I also brought goodies from home, like cherries, coffee creamer, hummus, snap peas and grapes.

We have a full-length mirror–must get one for the house.  Had one in our apartment–I have missed it!  Hi self!  (Definitely had fun taking this picture.)

Our giant bathroom!

Hot tub in the bedroom.  Wish I’d known–I would have brought bubble bath!

Andrew found the bed about two seconds after we got in the room.  Yes, he is still in his clothes.

Our fireplace.  Not really sure we’ll use it, but a nice touch.

Went for a run this morning in the village, then had Tiramisu French Toast at Taste, which was just as amazing as it sounds, and now I’m waiting to meet up with our realtor!  Wish me luck on finding a house!

I’m back!

I spent the weekend in East Aurora, NY, visiting Andrew and doing A LOT of house-hunting.  I rode up with Andrew’s mom and sister, Abigail, who were returning from a visit to Carmel, IN, and then flew home today.  Who knew a one-way plane ticket would be cheaper than renting a car?!

Here’s a recap:

Hi Abigail!

Andrew’s mom drove most of the way.  I got to sit and read and talk.

That was a good thing, since I was SO TIRED.  Can’t you tell?  I had stayed up until 1 a.m. the night before to listen to one of our Bible study sessions.  I almost fell asleep multiple times in the car.

As usual, we had Pasquale’s pizza and wings for dinner the first night there.  YUM!  I was never into Buffalo wings (I’m a mild kind of girl) until I met Andrew and was introduced to these wings.  They are the perfect blend of buffalo flavor, hot sauce and a crispy crust.  None of that gooey, slimy, overly spicy stuff here.

This is Andrew’s FAVORITE pepperoni pizza.  He loves how the little pepperoni slices curl up and form “boats” to catch the grease.  Yes, you heard that right.  I have to admit, I usually have at least half a slice with my wings.

Here is the view from the Layer’s kitchen:

I love it.  So scenic and quiet.  They’ve lived on the same street for 20-something years.  The deck is off their kitchen and this is the backyard and creek.  Deer are regular visitors.  Our cats have taken to hanging out here as well…

We went for a run Saturday morning.  It poured Friday evening and the forecast called for rain every day, so I didn’t have high hopes for good running weather.  Boy, was I wrong!  We were blessed with a mild and dry morning to start the run, and then got drizzled-on about halfway through.

Look mom!  I’m skinny now!  Thanks to Abigail for letting me borrow her clothes since what I brought would have been too warm.

Aww!  He loves me 🙂  Andrew was in a very good mood despite me kicking his butt the whole way.  That, and we went AFTER he got to sleep in a little.

Andrew and Odie in their natural states:

Andrew and I scheduled a same-day showing of, apparently, our dream house (LONG story, but it was as if God himself wanted us to see it and designed it just for us).  I’ll disclose more later if it looks like we have a chance to own it ourselves!

We went to Taste for dinner.  It’s a relatively new (five years or less?) cafe with wireless internet on Main Street.  It’s close to the open-air ice skating rink (also relatively new) and draws a crowd whether the weather is warm or cold.  Don’t you love the steam coming up out of the mug??

Here’s the inside.  Very cozy and comfy.

Here’s the breakfast menu–does it not look amazing?!  Oh, and they have s’mores on their menu!  You can get an order for two or four people, and it comes with grahams, marshmallows, chocolate pieces and a little burner to toast your own!  This is, obviously, a hit in the winter.

I splurged and treated myself to a coconut cream pie latte.  YUM!  Since I’ve been watching what I’ve been eating, I’ve really cut back on the “froufy” coffee drinks.  One benefit is that I’ve really lost my taste for the sickly-sweet beverages, and prefer them just slightly sweet.  Sweet enough that they aren’t just plain coffee, but not overloaded with sauce and whip and flavor.  Anyway, this drink was WONDERFUL.  Worth every calorie!

To balance out my calorie-laden beverage, I ordered the “Nutty Albacore Salad.”  Nothing to write home about, but I felt good eating light and getting protein with a hint of sweetness from the raisins.  (Not sure why the picture is so blurry…)

Andrew got a roast beef sandwich on a bagel, no cheese, mayo or horseradish.  That, in my opinion, is sacrilegious.

After dinner and our visit to our dream house, we joined the family for an evening showing of ‘Thor’ at the local theater on Main Street.

Check out the trash cans!  Aside from being full of, well, trash, aren’t they just darling?  I love this place.

Andrew and I went to breakfast Sunday morning.  We’ve been to Charlie’s before and really like sitting on the porch, but the weather wasn’t cooperating, so we settled for a table inside.  It was the worst table ever.  Just not a good location.  Good thing the blueberry pancakes I ordered MORE than made up for it!  Seriously… BEST. BLUEBERRY. PANCAKES. EVER.  Again, because I’ve been watching what I’ve been eating, I haven’t exactly been ordering pancakes or french toast or anything super “carb-y” at restaurants lately.  However, I was having a craving and after staring at the menu for 15 minutes (yes, it’s true–I am the most indecisive person on the face of the Earth), I finally gave in.  Blew Andrew’s french toast out of the water.

Andrew’s family had tickets to see “Wicked,” which was playing downtown, so they did that while we hit up a bunch of open houses.  We didn’t come away loving anything, which was a good thing.  And it wasn’t because we were comparing anything to our dream house, because I honestly wasn’t.  Nothing felt like “us.”  Thankfully, we have plenty of time.

We heard from our realtor last night and our open house here went incredibly well.  To quote her, “it was grand central station,” so that’s a good thing.  She said everyone loved the place and there were lots of babies.  Let’s hope that means some second showings this week!

I flew home Monday morning after seeing Andrew off to work and going on a quick run.  Two one-hour flights later, I was in the car with Heather and on our way to pick Hadrian up from puppy camp.

What a weekend!  Even though Andrew is already in New York, this is still my home until we sell our house.  East Aurora is starting to feel like home, especially when I go on my runs around his parents’ house.  There just something about the back roads, the cute homes, the trees and the fresh air.  And I’ve been going on runs there for the last nine years or so.

I’m looking forward to another jam-packed week of errands, odds-and-ends, working at the library and prepping with Heather for our Saturday yard sale!