The Journey Back To Hobbiton

December 29, 2010

Part I: From Bald Head To Fayetteville


Our first destination on our way home was Fayetteville to have lunch with the Gipsons! Aunt Becky is Karen’s younger sister, who is married to Uncle Corey. The cousin bunch are Patrick (who is in NYC), Megan and Ryan – plus doggie Sadie!



We joined them for a chili lunch – so great to catch up and exchange gifts. I received these cozy, fuzzy gloves!


It was a perfect cold day for a  big bowl of chili


Complete with cheddar and chips for dip and crunch


I wanted to eat fudge and cookies and more, but I settled on a taste of toffee for dessert


After a round of hugs, we were off on our 5 hour trek to Charlottesville.

Part II: Fayetteville To Richmond

Oh boy oh boy oh boy!!


Four hours of me in the drivers seat and our car drove straight to Whole Foods!! I did a bit of research before we left this morning and realized a trip to the Short Pump Whole Foods right outside of Richmond would be perfect timing for dinner and we could pick up groceries before the last little bit of our trip home. Even more exciting was that this was the biggest and best WF I have ever been in !

THREE HUGE salad / hot bar stations. HUGE selection!!

Romantic dinner for two


Cocktail hour:


You don’t want to know how much two giant jam-packed salads cost, but you DO want to know that they were worth every penny. So many fun things to taste.



Highlights in my box were:

  • 3 kinds of kale (all amazing)
  • 2 kinds of sweet potato (ditto)
  • 3 kinds of tofu
  • Wheatberry + raisin salad


I did manage to fill the bottom part with a bunch of plain, raw veggies too – but they weren’t as memorable ; )


We also picked up a GLORIOUS week’s worth of groceries. They are in our trunk, hopefully enjoying the below-freezing weather. One advantage of winter over summer traveling!

Part III: Short Pump To Charlottesville

It may be dark, but I smell cows! This drive went by so fast with my audio book, Prep. I’m enjoying it very much.


20 miles left to Charlottesville as I type this!

10 days to recuperate.

Then it’s off again – to Dillon, Montana for 2-3 weeks of Great Harvest training.

But those 10 days are going to be jam packed. Tomorrow is Karen’s surgery, so we’ll be on call for the next few days to take care of her while she’s in and hopefully quickly out of the hospital. She is excited for us to cook for her all week, and we have a fantastic meal plan ready to put into motion!

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{ 61 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jessica @ How Sweet It Is December 29, 2010 at 9:26 pm

Wishing Karen good luck and prayers to you and your family for tomorrow!


2 Sana December 29, 2010 at 9:27 pm

I hope everything goes smoothly for Karen tomm!


3 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey December 29, 2010 at 9:27 pm

You’re so smart Kath – I would also reearch something like the Whole Foods for dinner. That looks absolutely delicious!


4 Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) December 29, 2010 at 9:28 pm

Your pics have been incredibly gorgeous throughout this entire trip.

Hoping everyone stays safe and well tomorrow.


5 Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin December 29, 2010 at 9:28 pm

Wow sounds like you planned your trip home the right way! I was trying to explain to my fam at Christmas how amazing the Whole Foods bar is for lunch/dinner and couldn’t even articulate it… you just need to go experience it for yourself!


6 Angie @ Musings of a Violet Monkey December 29, 2010 at 9:30 pm

Jealous of your stop at Whole Foods!!! Charlotte STILL doesn’t have one.
Good luck to Karen tomorrow. I’ll be thinking of her.



7 Stacey December 29, 2010 at 9:33 pm

I can’t seem to make a Whole Foods salad for less than $17. I always feel guilty for spending so much, so I don’t do it very often! When I do though, I definitely get a few meals out of it! Plus it tastes so good it’s hard to feel guilty for long!


8 Lee December 29, 2010 at 9:36 pm

One of my friends and I have an on-going text message about how ridiculous our whole foods salad bar prices are. I’ll just randomly get a text from her saying, “WF – $12!!”

Hope everything goes smoothly with Karen’s surgery.


9 Simply Life December 29, 2010 at 9:41 pm

That dog looks just like our friend’s dog, Sadie!


10 Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday December 29, 2010 at 9:43 pm

Oh what a cute dog! What kind is it?


11 Kevin December 29, 2010 at 9:44 pm

Austin is the home of Whole Foods. The one downtown is ginormous. But living in the burbs I was glad to see a Small Natural Grocer coming soon. :-). Totally jealous of your salad bar box.


12 [email protected] December 29, 2010 at 9:47 pm

Well wishes and prayers for Karen’s surgery! I have only ever visited the two WF in my city, but I look forward to testing out the hot bar at other locations someday!


13 stacey-healthylife December 29, 2010 at 9:52 pm

I love the Whole Foods salad bar. It eat it more often then I should.


14 Stacy @ Every Little Thing December 29, 2010 at 9:56 pm

Oh Whole Foods bars, they make any day better! I have to keep myself away sometimes though, because of the $$.

Glad your trip went well! Well wishes for Karen!


15 Jen December 29, 2010 at 9:57 pm

You should try the Whole Foods in Fairfax, VA (I’ve heard it’s the largest on the east coast). I could stay in that store all day : )


16 Camille December 29, 2010 at 10:00 pm

What an epic dinner spread! I am craving some “Whole Paycheck” now :)


17 Brittany (Delights and Delectables) December 29, 2010 at 10:02 pm

Karen and you and Matt will be in my prayers tomorrow! Keep us posted! I love WF hot bars too.. I need to buy stock in Whole Foods! :)


18 Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) December 29, 2010 at 10:03 pm

Many blessings, prayers, and well wishes for Karen!!

I know the roads, drives, and scenes in between say SC/NC/VA and it’s awesome that you had salads and kombucha b/c there’s plenty of Waffle Houses and Bob Evans which are lovely and all, but I prefer fresh foods like yours :)


19 Candice @ OutdoorChirp December 29, 2010 at 10:11 pm

I absolutely love Short Pump! Whats not to love about it? I huge Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and frozen yogurt within minutes of each other. Heaven


20 Allison @ PickyEatingRD December 29, 2010 at 10:14 pm

Good luck and well wishes to Karen!!! I love whole foods hot and cold bar!


21 J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) December 29, 2010 at 10:19 pm

I love giant Whole Foods stores! Your salad looks fantastic.

Good luck to Karen! May she make a fast and easy recovery, and may they find nothing but good news. 😀


22 Jil @ Big, City, Lil Kitchen December 29, 2010 at 10:20 pm

Good luck to Karen!! She’ll be in my thoughts. Oh, and Sadie is such an adorable dog!


23 Jessi @ Life-Tangent December 29, 2010 at 10:20 pm

Hee hee, I worked at Whole Foods once upon a when. The food bar stations are $7.99/lb.! There was many a scratched head by a customer wondering how their “light” salad came out to be $18…. 😉


24 lynn (The Actors Diet) December 29, 2010 at 10:32 pm

i don’t want to know how much those salads cost! i had a teeny one (that i bulked up at home with tuna and my own spinach) and it cost over $6!!!


25 Allison (Have it Your Weigh) December 29, 2010 at 10:44 pm

Wishing Karen good luck tomorrow!! Hope everything goes well.

Prep is one of my favorite books. I’m sure you’ll enjoy the rest :)


26 Katy (The Singing Runner) December 29, 2010 at 10:56 pm

I hope everything goes well for Karen tomorrow! I’ll be thinking of her!


27 Jen December 29, 2010 at 10:58 pm

Karen is very lucky to have you and Matt by her side…a good support system is so important at times like this. Sending good thoughts for a successful surgery & speedy recovery to Karen tomorrow!


28 Maryann December 29, 2010 at 11:04 pm

WF salad bar is the best! I would eat it more often if it wasnt so pricey.


29 Hannah December 29, 2010 at 11:22 pm

Ohhh, those salads/salad bar kill sme! There is *nothing* like that in Australia. Sob!


30 Cara Craves... December 29, 2010 at 11:29 pm

I always close my eyes when I pay for my whole foods salad bar…
I try to ignore the cost and enjoy the meal…


31 Stephanie December 29, 2010 at 11:50 pm

Wish I had known you were passing through, I’m like 5 minutes from Short Pump Whole Foods (ummm it’s basically my favorite place every and go there wayyy too much haha) and coulda stopped in to say hello!!! 😀


32 Kath December 30, 2010 at 9:09 am

Next time! (There will be one :) )


33 wendy sue December 29, 2010 at 11:55 pm

ooh I love the whole foods( and trader joe’s) at short pump! I tend to plan my stops back to cville around supertargets and trader joe’s!


34 Kim December 30, 2010 at 12:00 am

Thinking of Karen tomorrow. My mom just went through this same exact thing 8 weeks ago. It was very scary, but the surgery went well. She was up and walking that day and home the next night. (we even went to a movie 2 days after surgery)
They will be able to tell if the cancer has spread to the lymph system within a few days.
I’m so sorry you are going through this. It is so hard. Hang in there. Thinking of you all.


35 Kath December 30, 2010 at 9:09 am

Thanks for sharing Kim – best to your mom!


36 Amanda (Eating Up) December 30, 2010 at 12:19 am

Whole Foods hot bar/salad bar can get pretty pricey…I definitely know that from experience. I agree though–such good stuff! The best buffet in all the land!


37 Alaina December 30, 2010 at 12:27 am

Wow, so on-the-go Kath!

My thoughts and prayers will be with Karen tomorrow. I hope that all goes well :-)


38 Leila December 30, 2010 at 1:07 am

Good luck to Karen tomorrow! Hopefully you get a *little* rest before your next adventure :)


39 Justeen @ Blissful Baking December 30, 2010 at 1:20 am

i heart whole foods!
your salad looks delish!


40 Kate (What Kate is Cooking) December 30, 2010 at 2:56 am

I can’t resist the Whole Foods hot bar! Always expensive but so worth it.


41 Maria@ The Fitted Apron December 30, 2010 at 6:49 am

Best of luck to Karen tomorrow.


42 Kris December 30, 2010 at 6:55 am

Well wishes to Karen tomorrow! She’s lucky to have such great care (and food) waiting.


43 Lauren December 30, 2010 at 6:58 am

I’ll be thinking of Karen tomorrow. :) Glad you guys got home safe.


44 Christine December 30, 2010 at 7:38 am

Yeah I definitely did not plan on spending as much as I did at the Whole Foods salad/hot bar as I did on Tuesday. It *was* good though and I felt *great* so I guess it is worth it!!


45 Lauren at KeepItSweet December 30, 2010 at 7:40 am

Good idea stopping for dinner and groceries! Sounds like you have a crazy but exciting month ahead!


46 Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) December 30, 2010 at 8:14 am

I hope everything goes well for Karen tomorrow!!

Your eats look fabulous, by the way. Occasionally, I can definitely justify spending a load of money on such a fun salad too. 😀


47 Elizabeth @ RunWithSneakers December 30, 2010 at 8:18 am

Best wishes to Karen! Hope all goes well.
If you like the Whole Foods at Short Pump, you should visit Austin sometime. Austin = Whole Foods Mother Ship (headquarters.) It’s really dizzying.


48 Amanda December 30, 2010 at 8:28 am

My thoughts are with Karen and you guys through this surgery!


49 Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) December 30, 2010 at 8:28 am

I am glad you guys made it back safely. My thoughts are with Karen today. I hope everything goes well and that she has a speedy recovery.


50 Beth @ DiningAndDishing December 30, 2010 at 8:43 am

I will be thinking of Karen!! I hope everything goes well :).


51 Judy December 30, 2010 at 8:46 am

All the best to Karen for her surgery, I will say a prayer for her for sure… Can’t wait to see what you make for her as she recovers.


52 lindsay December 30, 2010 at 9:17 am

I have those gloves in orange and I LOVE them!! I hope everything goes smoothly tomorrow…


53 Jenna December 30, 2010 at 9:24 am

ohhhhhhh dear…you are going to dillion mt in JANUARY!!!! I hope you have invested in some very warm clothes!!!! my grandfather was saying just a few days ago it was -13!!!!??? hello..i can’t even handle 13 above!! good luck! 😉

I really hope everything goes well with your mils surgery! She seems like the sweetest woman and i’m sure its a scary time for all of you!


54 Sam December 30, 2010 at 9:50 am

Funny that you say that about the Short Pump Whole Foods. I was in Short Pump for a conference about six weeks ago and visited that Whole Foods, my first Whole Foods ever. I had no idea it was a “special” one :) but I was in heaven over the salad bar. Fortunately, lunch was covered by work so I got reimbursed for the $11 it cost to absolutely stuff the heck out of one of those containers. It was so good, though.

Best wishes to Karen today.


55 Bekah December 30, 2010 at 10:15 am

I can’t believe it, but… we had dinner together last night! I was at the same Whole Foods enjoying their hot bars for dinner and have to agree — it’s the biggest and best Whole Foods I’ve ever seen. The ones in LA are miniscule by comparison. Can’t believe we were both there and didn’t bump into each other. Bah!

My thoughts are with Karen this week. Sending lots of healing energy her way.


56 Kath December 30, 2010 at 10:16 am

I THOUGHT someone who reads KERF might be there!


57 Lori December 30, 2010 at 11:13 am

Going to Short Pump for the week-end. Will have to find that Whole Foods before I come home since we don’t have one where I live.
Prayers and healthing thoughts to Karen.


58 Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin December 30, 2010 at 12:37 pm

I hope Karen’s surgery today goes well. I’ll be thinking of her!


59 Shannon December 30, 2010 at 2:20 pm

We spent many a romantic evening in Whole Foods, and I do know how much those salads cost. And I totally agree that they’re worth every penny. Yum!

I have a book suggestion for you. I just finished reading Moloka’i. It was one of the best I’ve read all year, and you and I have similar tastes in books.

Hoping everything goes well for Karen! :)


60 Meagan December 30, 2010 at 10:00 pm

WHOLE FOODS! AH I am such a WFs freeak


61 Eating Bird Food December 31, 2010 at 8:41 am

The Short Pump Whole Foods is the one I go to now! I love it!

I’m quite certain Karen’s surgery is complete now, but I hope everything went well and she recovers quickly and painlessly.


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