I had the greatest weekend last weekend! I had a long weekend with my college roommate, Courtney, and her family in the burbs of Philadelphia. I arrived late Thursday evening. Friday her kids went to school and we had a girlie day. I never have girlie days so it was a treat to get a pedicure, have lunch and go shopping.
In general (and opposite of all other members of my family) I do not enjoy shopping at all but this was super fun. I found my new favorite store, COS. Do you pronounce it like one word or is it spelled out like C – O – S? If any of you could let me know that would be great. Anywho, found my new favorite store. Then, we picked up the kids from school. Hung out at home. Made a fire. Drank some wine. Ordered pizza. Chatted the night away. It was glorious.
We also had to make some scones. The next day was the royal wedding so we needed to be prepared. With the help of my baking buddy we made scones with just a hint of lemon zest.
We didn’t have time to make jam and clotted cream so we bought mascarpone cheese and mixed berry jam to top our scones. It was fantastic! I highly recommend it.
Saturday we fast forwarded to the highlights of the royal wedding. Loved every part I saw. Then, we headed to the airport where our other superstar friend, Tia, came to Philly for 24 hours. I MEAN SUPERSTAR! She woke up at 2am and drove to the airport. Caught a 6am flight with a 2-hour layover in Chicago then hopped on the flight to Philadelphia, arriving at noon. Our flight home was the next day at noon. SUPERSTAR!
We picked Tia up from the airport and headed straight to the city for my first Philly Cheesesteak experience. Courtney lived in the city for 5 years then in the burbs for 3. She warned us (me) to know what we want and not “be all midwest” and ask a lot of questions or we would get yelled at. She informed us there are two main places people go to get cheesesteaks. Apparently you are either a Pat’s person
or a Geno’s person.
Courtney took us to Geno’s.
The girl at the counter was great. I told her I had never had a cheesesteak before so I wanted the “traditional” one for my first experience. She responded, “Do you trust me?” I said yes, unless there are peppers. I don’t want any peppers. Then she yelled “With with Whiz.” I think that’s what she yelled at least.
Here is my beautiful Philly cheesesteak “with” onions and cheese whiz.
It was great and so fun to have the experience with my college girlfriends. I will admit I was nervous about the “whiz” but it really isn’t like cheese whiz from a jar it is more like an au jus. Honestly, I could have done with some extra whiz on the side for dipping.
After gorging on cheesesteaks (yes I ate the whole thing), Courtney guided us down the street where all the Italian food shops are. Lucky for us it happened to be the Italian market festival that weekend. Oh, I forgot to mention it was raining all day but that didn’t even slow us down. We took in the general splendor, hugged some cheese, celebrated our reunion with limoncello and treated ourselves to a cannoli. All in about 20 minutes. It was great!
Then, we headed to the heart of the city. Walked around, peeked at the Liberty Bell and took a carriage tour.
We went to the Reading Terminal Market which I would highly recommend to everyone. But I have to say my absolute favorite thing we did. The only thing I really wanted to do (which was a distant second to having girl time) was run up the Rocky steps (aka art museum). We LOVE Rocky in my family. LOVE IT! I could write a whole additional blog post on it but I won’t. Anyway, there were some super lame people walking up the steps… not us! Courtney stayed in the car so we wouldn’t get towed and Tia and I lived out one of my dreams!
We have so much left to do that another trip to Philadelphia is definitely in our future. We want to actually go to the art museum, not just run the steps. Go on the bus tour of the city and learn all the historical facts, eat a roast pork sandwich (another sandwich they are famous for) and try water ice… whatever that is.
Thank you so much to Courtney and family for being fabulous hosts! Thank you to Tia for making those 24 hours happen. Thanks Philly for being a great time even in the rain. I can’t wait to do it all again! Sarah, you will definitely be there next time!