Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Girls Trip to Natchez

This will be my last post this week as I am looking forward to celebrating the remainder of Holy Week with my family.  I want to encourage you to attend Easter services this Sunday with your family or friends.  Even if you do not currently have a church home, find one and celebrate that Christ is Risen! Because He lives, we have eternal hope and I can't begin to tell you how much that hope has been a constant peace and encouragement to me in my own personal walk with Christ.

Y'all!  We had SO MUCH fun in Natchez, Mississippi, this past weekend on our girls trip!!  If you love the antebellum period of history, if you swoon over the big hoop skirts of the Scarlett O'Hara's, if you enjoy stories of pre-Civil War and how the South rose to its prestige, I can think of no other town to visit than Natchez!  Each spring and fall, the city opens its antebellum homes for tours, known as "The Pilgrimage." The homes are staged to resemble the lifestyle and livelihood of Southern plantation life. My favorite time to go is in the spring because the weather is nicer and the dogwoods and azaleas are in bloom.

When I picked Jennifer and Jessica up Friday morning, it was 45 degrees and sunny, but still a little too cool for me. Especially if we were going to be outside and walking for most of the day!  I stayed in a thick North Face jacket until around lunch time when we stopped to eat at Roux 61 just outside of Natchez {In case your wondering, Natchez is about the midpoint between Monroe and Baton Rouge}. Roux is a fairly new restaurant in town and every time we drive by there, the parking lot is packed!  Luckily, we arrived for an early lunch and the food did not disappoint!  It was delicious!  I told Wayne that I would like for us to go back one weekend when we don't have much going on, but we'll definitely have to go hungry!  The food portions are HUGE!

After lunch, we went to the Natchez Visitors Center to pick up our tickets for the pilgrimage tour.  Jennifer chose Rosalie, I chose Monmouth Hall (since we were eating there later that night) and Jessica chose a smaller home, The Burn.  The weather, by that time, was wonderful and I was even able to shuck my blue jean jacket!  Here are a few pics!


The Rosalie - this house is open year round for tours

Monmouth Hall - this home is a very popular venue for weddings



Monmouth's gardens - I think the heavy rains have slowed the Spring foliage, but can you imagine what these pictures would look like in full bloom?  The wisteria over the pergola area alone would be where I would want to get married!



At The Burn - Wayne made fun of me when he saw this pic because I had tennis shoes on.  I brought leopard flats, but never put them on.  We did an awful lot of walking, but Jennifer and Jessica managed to walk in their boots!

After walking and touring, we were rather parched and decided to spend the remainder of the afternoon - until we had to go back to the hotel and get ready for dinner - on Fat Mama's porch sipping margaritas.  Fat Mama's is known in Natchez for their margaritas and tamales.  You can't go to Natchez and not have one or the other!




Later that evening, we had dinner at Restaurant 1818 at Monmouth Hall.  The food was out-of-this-world WONDERFUL!  I would love to go back there and eat again.  I had the Pasta Primavera with vegetables, Jennifer had the steak, and Jessica had the pork tenderloin.  The three of us managed to close the restaurant down.  Ha!  What can I say?  We had a late reservation.


At Restaurant 1818 after dinner - Seeing this just made me realize that I wore blue the entire weekend!  Ha!  I actually brought a red sequined blouse to wear, but decided to wear the blue sequined instead.  Notice I switched the tennis shoes for leopard wedges!

For late night entertainment, we went to listen to a few bands that were playing in the area.  Our first stop was Biscuits and Blues and I was so disappointed for several reasons.  First of all, the look of the place inside did not appeal to me, the band did not appeal to me {blues music}, and the biscuits - for which they are known for - did not appeal to me {yuck!}.  I guess you could say the place was just not what I had in mind for such a catchy name.  We moved up the street to Bowie's Tavern next.  When we first got there, the place was rather empty and we didn't hear any music playing.  Our waitress told us that the band was taking a break.  When they came back and started playing, the first song they played was "Sweet Home Alabama," and I knew I was where I needed to be!!  We had the best time that night with the band playing mostly all 80's music!  We closed Bowie's Tavern down, too!

On Saturday morning, we slept in.  Our first activity of the day was a carriage ride through the historic downtown center of Natchez.  We loved hearing all the old stories of the town and people.  On the ride, I asked where Greg Iles lived. For those of you that don't know, Greg Iles is a Natchez writer, similar to Michael Connelley (who I love!), Harlan Coben, and Tess Gerritsen.  He writes about the town of Natchez and the South and his series character is Penn Cage. Maybe you've heard of Natchez Burning?  I highly suggest the series!  Awesome writing, but Greg's books are not easy, quick reads.  His characters, settings, and themes are highly interwoven and complicated.  Our guide showed us his house where he conducts business and does some writing (but he doesn't live there) and it's right across from the Mississippi River.  A little unusual looking, but here's a pic.  It was a running joke with us all weekend that we were stalking Greg Iles!



Y'all see Hal the horse smiling for the camera?  Our guide was holding a carrot over him to make him smile!


Before leaving town, we had lunch at Pearl Street Pasta, another restaurant that you have to visit when in town! Last and final stop was to see the "Turning Angel" in the Natchez County Cemetary.  You'll have to google it and read all about it, but it's also the title of one of Iles' books in the Penn Cage series.  We had hoped to do a cemetary tour, but it was only on audio and we wanted a real, live person to guide us.  The Turning Angel has a reputation similar to the Mona Lisa - her eyes are suppose to follow you where ever you are in the cemetary.  It's a Natchez landmark.



It was a sad afternoon crossing back over the mighty Mississip to go back home to Louisiana, but we had a great time! We're already planning another trip next year and we're thinking about taking our girls with us.  We'll see.

Happy Easter, everyone!

4 comments:

  1. What a fun trip! I really enjoyed reading about it and seeing your pictures. I've never been to Mississippi before. Have a wonderful and blessed Easter!

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  2. Looks like such a fun weekend! I would have been the same as you in tennis shoes, I do not like having uncomfortable feet when walking around! Sweet Home Alabama is one of my absolute favorite songs!! Have a great Easter with your family!

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  3. That sounds like such a fun trip. I'm getting ready for my own little girls get away. I'm totally with you on wearing comfortable shoes. Happy Easter!

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  4. This looks like such a fun trip! Natchez is definitely on my list to check out before we move from Mississippi! I will have to keep your restaurant suggestions!

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