Book Tour: Birmingham & Savannah

by jenna on October 2, 2012

Whew! What a whirlwind of a week and a half it’s been!

Mom and I arrived back to Savannah last Friday evening after covering about 1,300 miles all over the South. And let me tell you, I got my FILL of fast food, sweet iced tea and mumford & sons, that’s for sure. Although I loved traveling, I have to admit that it’s really nice to sleep in my bed and see surroundings other than asphalt for miles on end. I need to remember to post my 200 song road-trip playlist for you guys! It was a good one.

So, hmmmm….where did I leave off? I think I had just left Charleston last time I recapped. Well, from Charleston mom and I made the longest trek west to Birmingham, AL!

Oh.my.BIRMINGHAM!!!!

You have my heart. Y’all showed up big time and I can’t thank you enough! I was completely and utterly blown away by you guys.

I just love this photo of all your beautiful faces. It was so nice to meet each one of you!

This boy right here came because his girlfriend was sick. It was one of the cutest things I’ve ever seen.

These lovely ladies road-tripped all the way from Nashville to attend the event. I was so touched!

And, it get’s even better — they brought treats!! Alexandra made these delicious homemade pumpkin chai kisses, deep dish caramel apple cookies {swoon – those were my fav!} and blondies for our drive the next day.

Seriously. These treats made the six hour drive go by so much faster!

Pretty Bama law school students!

So many new friends! With the cutest outfits, too. People in Alabama are just so stylish…and so nice!

After my event, the lovely team at Barnes and Noble took my mom and I out to dinner at a fantastic restaurant called Gianmarco’s in Homewood {I can’t find a website for the restaurant so I’m just linking to their Yelp reviews}. I’m not just saying this, it was some of the best Italian food I’ve ever had. Everything was absolutely phenomenal and the service was fabulous as well. I ordered seafood risotto and it blew my mind. The portion was enough for five people, but I managed to make a dent.

Thank you so much Birmingham Barnes & Noble! You guys really made it a very special night for mom and I.

Also in Birmingham, we ate at a lovely local establishment called Bottega. It was recommended by some of y’all, actually, and we loved it! I think I mentioned it in my last post but there are two sides of the restaurant — the actual restaurant and the more casual {and more affordable!} cafe. We ate at the cafe and it was perfect.

Slurp.

And then tonight I met you guys in Savannah, Georgia! This one was especially fun because both my parents got to come with.

That’s my dad being the sneaky paparazzi in the back! Thanks, dad!

And thanks, Kay, for the photos! I have no idea what I am doing or saying here…like usual.

By my face, you would assume Channing Tatum is right in front of me, getting his book signed.

I would like to say though that that necklace I am wearing above was the best $2.50 I’ve ever spent from Forever 21.

Hi, Brooke! Brooke went to my same culinary school and now decorates wedding cakes in Savannah. It was so nice to meet her!

I hope we can continue the fun at my book launch party on Thursday and at The Taste of Atlanta this weekend!

In other exciting news, I am adding another signing to the list! I’ll be signing books in Indianapolis at Big Hat Books next Wednesday (10/10) at 6pm. I’ve updated the book tour page with the address. I’ve never been to Indianapolis before, so this is very exciting!

I love you guys!! Like, a lot.

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{ 64 comments… read them below or add one }

Sonal October 2, 2012 at 3:57 am

Jenna, your book tour looks like such a success! Congratulations! :) I’m such a fan of your blog, wishing you all the good things to come!

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Joelle (on a pink typewriter) October 2, 2012 at 4:01 am

Coincidentally, Mumford and Sons started playing on my iPod when I started reading your post haha. Anyways – looks like a great trip so far! And pumpkin chai cookies?? I hope you got the recipe!

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Blog is the New Black October 2, 2012 at 4:21 am

Jenna, you are beautiful! So glad you are enjoying! :)

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Life's a Bowl October 2, 2012 at 4:33 am

You are adorable!!! Sounds like your book tour has been a complete success :) Any plans to come to DC?! It’s one of the best times of the year here!

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katryn@rampantcuisine October 2, 2012 at 5:25 pm

Yes Jenna…please come to DC!

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Michelle @ Eat Move Balance October 2, 2012 at 4:35 am

You might need to do a hair tutorial as a post on the blog! How do you get those beautiful waves?!?

So glad your tour is going well! :)

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jenna October 2, 2012 at 11:53 am

I’ve been making waves with the curling iron lately, but really have no idea what I’m doing and always end up with these funky crimped ends….I need more practice before ever attempting to make a video! hah!

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Molly @ RDexposed October 2, 2012 at 4:52 am

I need to start doing my hair like yours. Hair post, please. :)

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jenna October 2, 2012 at 11:52 am

I have no idea what I’m doing with my hair…and that’s the absolute truth.

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Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat October 2, 2012 at 4:53 am

Aww Jenna this looks like such a blast!! It’s so obvious that you’re totally in your element and loving every minute. That was SO cute of that girl’s boyfriend to turn up for her since she was sick… boyfriend of the year award right there lol! Enjoy your next stop!

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Courtney October 2, 2012 at 5:32 am

YAY! I was hoping you might sign somewhere in Indy when you were here. You’ll be blown away by the owner of Big Hat Books :) I’ll be there with my already read White Jacket Required – I read it in one night when I got it from Amazon – and I’m a mama of two, so that’s saying something. Big Hat Books is in Broad Ripple where there is lots of good food – if you need any suggestions, let me know! Enjoy :)

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Kim @ The Family Practice October 2, 2012 at 5:42 am

So happy for you! Looks like a great start to the book tour

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Liz October 2, 2012 at 5:57 am

Why no NY? C’mon book publisher…NY is where it’s at :)

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jenna October 2, 2012 at 11:48 am

seriously! If flights weren’t, like, $800 I would totally come.

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Tina October 2, 2012 at 5:58 am

Oh man, I am so picky about italian food but that looks so yummy! It’s only 9 am but I could totally go for that!

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Claire @ Live and Love to Eat October 2, 2012 at 5:59 am

Congrats on all the success! PS, your hair looks incredible!

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Jenna October 2, 2012 at 6:26 am

Glad u got to meet my pretty sister! :) she got me a signed copy! We hope u like the cookbook!

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jenna October 2, 2012 at 6:38 am

I LOVE it and I had the jam this morning on an English muffin – it was divine! Thank you both so much!

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alexandra @ sweet betweens [blog] October 2, 2012 at 6:54 am

I’m just so happy you loved the treats, Jenna! :) I posted the chai-pumpkin spice cookies this morning and will post your favorite [the caramel apple] next. And don’t worry – I won’t forget about the blondie. :)

Annie [Tennessee Sugar] and I loved the journey to + stay in Birmingham and are thrilled we got to meet you + have a little conversation. Mumford on shuffle made it a perfect road trip adventure!

Enjoy the rest of your stay in the South and safe travels back to CA!

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Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit October 2, 2012 at 7:02 am

I’m with you – love traveling, but so nice to be home after a long haul. Glad to see everything went smoothly in the events, gosh… I would be so humbled if all those people showed up for me!

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Laura F October 2, 2012 at 7:15 am

Woo-hoo, you’ll be in Indy! Courtney’s right, there are some great places to eat, especially in the neighborhood of Big Hat Books (we call the area Broad Ripple). Try Brugge Brasserie down the street (savory crepes, pommes frites, craft beer). I also really like Broad Ripple Brew Pub right next door to Big Hat Books…it’s pub food, but there are tons of vegetarian and vegan options. See you on the 10th!

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Heather @ Heather's Dish October 2, 2012 at 7:37 am

1. you are so stinking beautiful,
2. that boy that come for his girlfriend? OMG. AWESOME.
3. SOOOOOOOOO wish you were coming to Little Rock!

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Jodi goo October 2, 2012 at 7:53 am

I am so happy for you and your success. Reading your blog and the way you write instantly gives me a better outlook on my own life. So I just wante to say thank you for being such an inspiration, just to be happier. <3

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Abby@ Totes Delish Blog October 2, 2012 at 7:59 am

How fun! Wish I still lived in IL, I would come see you in Indy, it’s a wonderful little city : )

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stephanie October 2, 2012 at 8:07 am

Jenna-My sister-n-law repeatedly insisted to get me a gift for my birthday…finally I said, “I really only wanted one thing…a book called White Jacket Required!” I received the book in the mail a few days later and waited about 1 minute before opening it to just read the prologue (thinking my sister-n-law wouldn’t mind me peeking at the book before my actual birthday), however, I just couldn’t put it down…I finished reading your book (my birthday isn’t even until Friday)! I wanted to let you know that I completely loved reading every page of your book and now I am anxious to get in the kitchen to the make the recipes! Thank you for sharing your life and your passion!

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jenna October 2, 2012 at 11:47 am

Thank you, Stephanie!! That is so sweet…and it really means a lot!

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Sharla October 2, 2012 at 8:17 am

Wish you were closer! I loved the book and have made two of the recipes already (home made baked beans adding turkey pepper jack sausage and lemon brown sugar chicken). My husband LOVED the baked beans – it will be a new addition to his favorites list :)

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Caroline L. October 2, 2012 at 8:19 am

It is so fun to go along your adventures with you – thanks for all of the recaps! You look so happy and beautiful, congratulations!

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Andrea @ The Skinny Chronicles October 2, 2012 at 8:52 am

What a blast! Everyone is so dolled up and put together for you. Way to inspire fashion greatness. I am glad all is well on the road! Travel safe.

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Averie @ Averie Cooks October 2, 2012 at 8:53 am

Congrats on your tour going wonderfully and for such a great turnout at all the events. Must be so awesome to connect with readers and old time friends/culinary student buddies and to do it with your family members – and with a cute F21 necklace on :)

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Jennifer October 2, 2012 at 8:56 am

Looks like you are having an awesome tour! You should look at coming to the Annapolis, MD area!

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Olivia October 2, 2012 at 9:24 am

Please come to Chicago if you get a chance!

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Lindsey October 2, 2012 at 9:26 am

I wish soo badly that I had been able to be there!! I am an Auburn student (graduating in May) and have read your blog for four years!! Would have loved to have met you! Hopefully we will make it happen one day. So glad that you’ve made it back to Sweet Home Alabama:) Safe travels throughout the rest of your tour!

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Linda @ My Foodgasm Journal October 2, 2012 at 9:30 am

Woohoo! You’re such a rock star, Jenna. Can’t wait to see you.

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Gianmarcos Menu October 2, 2012 at 10:05 am
Jessie October 2, 2012 at 11:09 am

We all loved meeting you and listening to you, Jenna! For the record, your public speaking is fiiiiiine.

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jenna October 2, 2012 at 11:46 am

Thanks, Jessie!! It was so great to meet you, too!

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erin @WELLinLA October 2, 2012 at 11:31 am

I adore that your parents came with you! One of my life goals is to write a book (on intersection of wellness and design). Reading your posts has been both motivating and encouraging. My mom is retiring in a little less than two years and I would love to have her there as my partner-in-crime on a book tour! Thank you for the inspiration, Jenna!

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Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy October 2, 2012 at 11:52 am

I can’t wait to do a book tour one day. It looks like a lot of hard work – but fun too!

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beth evans October 2, 2012 at 12:06 pm

Yayy!! I’m so excited you are coming to Indy!! I was soo hoping you would! I cannot wait to finally meet you and see you face to face! I will 100% be there next week, hopefully front and center! And as Courtney and Laura said, there are lots of yummy places to eat here!! Brugge Brasserie is for sure a must! They have delicious mussels!! And one of their dessert crepes as NUTELLA in it!!! Ah! A little bit further, more in downtown Indy, is a faaaantastic Thai place called Siam Square. If you have the chance, you should try to make it out there. It’s ridiculously good!! I can’t wait to see you on the 10th!!

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JulieD October 2, 2012 at 12:16 pm

Love love, I wish I could find a way to make it up to Savannah this weekend. What a sweet thing Kay is doing!! xo I know you’ll post pictures of it!

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michelleB October 2, 2012 at 12:46 pm

Congratulations Jenna! I pre-purchased your book in August and had been saving it to read on a trip to Sonoma County, California. Well, I’m back from my trip and the book is GREAT! I LOVE, LOVE all of the recipes and will try the clam linguine tonight! I started following your blog last year while looking for a homemade yellow cake and have been hooked ever since – even going back to the beginning (took me one month to catch up with you!). While on my trip it was so neat to be reading your book while visiting places you have been to and have recommended. Healdsburg was so cute and I snagged some much needed kitchen accessories there! I wanted to go to Tartine’s in SF, but good gracious girl, where do you find a place to park?! Louisiana would LOVE for you to make a stop in our state…hint, hint! Best of luck to you and I’m looking forward to your second book…right?

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brooke @ sweats & sweets October 2, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Oh my goodness I’m on your blog! Thank you so much for speaking with me and it was such a pleasure meeting you! I talked about it all night to my husband, my mom, and then my coworkers today at work.

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bkstrvl October 2, 2012 at 3:51 pm

I do enjoy your blog so much, so I hope you nor your followers will get mad when I gently remind you that it should be “Barnes and Noble took my mom and me” and “for my mom and me” (not “I”). I know you are an English major and this was probably just an oversight.

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Becky Henderson October 2, 2012 at 4:15 pm

Eeeeeee! I can’t wait to meet you in Indy! I’m super excited!

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Meghan F October 2, 2012 at 4:28 pm

I like your blue dress – where did you get it?

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jenna October 2, 2012 at 4:36 pm

I got it from Madewell..but quite a long time ago — I don’t know if they have that exact dress any more.

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Chelsea October 2, 2012 at 5:16 pm

I have that same dress you’re wearing from Madewell and isn’t it amazing? I love it so much. I’d wear it once a week if I weren’t so lazy about getting my drycleaning in. lol.

I love it because it goes with any type of shoe you want to wear-sandal, boots, bootie, heels, anything. Best money I’ve ever spent at that store, which is my crack as it is. hahaha.

It looks good on you, too! ;)

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Aileen October 2, 2012 at 6:11 pm

I’m so glad you had a great time in Bham! I went to college at Samford and loved living there. Gianmarco’s and Bottega are so good! Can’t wait to read about the rest of your tour.

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Sarah October 2, 2012 at 6:46 pm

if you are going to be in indy, you should make the three hour drive east to Columbus and do a reading in the home of the Ohio State Buckeyes! We would love to host you!

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Ashley October 2, 2012 at 6:47 pm

I loveeeeee GianMarcos!!! Such a cozy little establishment and like you said the best food. My boyfriend and I went this weekend. Delish!!

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Andrea October 2, 2012 at 7:34 pm

Did you get the recipe for the pumpkin chai kisses? They sound heavenly!

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jenna October 3, 2012 at 12:15 pm
Kristen October 2, 2012 at 9:03 pm

I’m so proud to know you!

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jenna October 3, 2012 at 12:10 pm

Love you, Kristen! Sure wish we lived closer…

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Monica October 2, 2012 at 9:05 pm

Where did you get your dress, Jenna? So cute! Congratulations on your book and tour- I can’t wait to get my copy! I just made your spaghetti and meat sauce tonight- from your post a week ago. Absolutely SO good!

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Monica October 2, 2012 at 9:06 pm

Oh shoot, just saw your comments to other readers who loved it as much as I did- nevermind! But the congrats stands! :)

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jenna October 3, 2012 at 12:11 pm

It’s from Madewell…but from last year. They have similar ones currently though, I believe.

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Marie October 2, 2012 at 9:23 pm

I know you’re busy with the tour and all, but are you reading anything or have you read anything interesting lately? I need a new book to read!

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jenna October 3, 2012 at 12:10 pm

You’re in luck — I have one scheduled for tomorrow! :)

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Audrey October 2, 2012 at 10:42 pm

I’m sad you aren’t making your way to Oregon. But, on another note, I bought your book today because our local libraries don’t have it yet. I am so excited to read it!

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Stacey I October 3, 2012 at 1:24 pm

I just bought your book – cannot wait to read it!!!

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Diana October 4, 2012 at 8:20 am

Sounds like a really fun time! I am loving these posts from the road.

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Christy October 4, 2012 at 7:13 pm

i hope you can drop by ann arbor too! congrats again!

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