05 July 2016

Baby, You're a F I R E C R A C K E R !

We had a great July 4th holiday: lots of food, drinks, live music, fun and time with friends and family. You know, all the good stuff that happiness brings.

Friday evening, Michael and I attended the Billy Joel concert at PNC Park and it was nothing short of amazing. Well, allow me to clarify. As it turned out, Kenney Chesney was in town for a concert on Saturday night so at the end of the concert, Billy invited Kenney on stage to sing one of his classics and let me just put it this way – Kenney should stick to country. He completely butchered Billy’s song. At any rate, it was a great concert and as always, Billy Joel rocked it.

Saturday morning, our friends Joe and Mimi flew in from Florida to spend the holiday weekend with us. The weather was absolutely gorgeous; low 70’s, sunny and no humidity. We decided to go to lunch at Bar Louie at Station Square and sat outside with a view of the Ohio River and downtown Pittsburgh. Maddy was able to do one of her favorite things at Station Square - playing in the water fountain - while I was able to snap some cute pictures of her, something I'm not often able to do because, you know, attitude. 

After lunch, we took a ride on the incline and enjoyed the view of downtown Pittsburgh and the surrounding areas. Shortly thereafter, naps were had by all followed by a dinner of pizza, wine and enjoying our fire pit.

Yes, you read that right. Our fire pit…in summer.

Saturday night, the low was in the 50’s so we seized the chance to cozy up to the fire, enjoy a few glasses of wine and some music and had some great conversations. It was a perfect evening.

Sunday found us up and at ‘em early as we had tickets for the Just Ducky Boat Tour around Pittsburgh. Just Ducky is a city tour by land and water and it’s so much fun. The tour guides really get into it by cracking jokes, being smart asses and the history they share of the city is pretty extensive. Since Joe and Mimi have never been to Pittsburgh, we thought this was the best way to show them the city and as always, Just Ducky didn’t disappoint.

Part of their gig is to quack at people around the city and it’s a huge tradition here in Pittsburgh that the locals enjoy. They will actually get offended if you DON’T quack! Needless to say our little duckling was all set with her quacker which meant that by the time our hour-long ride was over, Mama was ready for some beers.

After lunch and naps in the afternoon, the adults set out to enjoy dinner downtown at Il Pizzaiolo. Michael’s brother Pete and his wife Regina met up with us for dinner and we stuffed ourselves silly with carbs and wine. Afterwards, we took a walk down to the point as the sun was setting and then took Joe and Mimi up to the Mount Washington lookout so they could see the entire city at night.

After such a busy weekend, yesterday was all about taking it easy. Maddy and I ran some errands in the morning while Michael, Joe and Mimi went grocery shopping. Here’s a little known fact about Michael: he’s a chef. No, really! He has a culinary degree so, he cooked dinner for all of us last night and when I tell you how freaking A M A Z I N G it was, that doesn’t even begin to accurately describe how delicious our meal was.

We had a scallop appetizer with an apple/leek garnish followed by a stuffed pork loin with glazed butternut squash and cauliflower puree. Dessert was whoopee pies with chocolate chips, powdered sugar and caramel sauce. #nomnomnom

Overall, we had an amazing weekend. And this little firecracker? Well, I loved having an extra day to spend with her even if she did throw out the ‘tude every now and again. I’m pretty certain that fireworks are the only thing that could rival that explosive personality.

How was your holiday weekend?   
Courtney @ Shiraz In My Sippy Cup
Courtney @ Shiraz In My Sippy Cup

Courtney is a published author, mom, taco enthusiast, and a Star Wars and Tennessee Volunteers fanatic. She's never met a piece of sushi she didn’t like and enjoys an amazing glass of wine and a great cut of meat. You can read more of her wine-induced, sleep-deprived adventures on The Huffington Post and Scary Mommy.


  1. Sounds like a lovely weekend! It was unseasonably cool here as well but we also had rain which didn't make feel festive at all. Looked like a fun day in the city. I just had a friend move to the Pittsburgh area so I'll have to check out those tours when I go visit her!

  2. What a fun weekend !!! It was chilly where I live too - interesting for the fourth! :)

  3. You guys had a lot of fun. I had to work over the weekend but yesterday was full of sun and BBQ'S. I love hanging around the fire pit during the summer.