Monday, July 6, 2015

Spontaneous Beach Trip

Several months ago, Adam and I decided it was time to go camping with Connor. We picked a state park and reserved a spot for his first weekend of the summer with us. When the time came around, the forecast called for rain. Sadly, we cancelled.

As luck would have it, the forecast changed overnight and we found ourselves on Friday morning with a beautiful weekend and no plans. Around lunchtime, I asked what he thought about a weekend trip to the beach. Within an hour we had booked a hotel room and started packing.

We told Connor as soon as he got home, and he was SO excited!!! He couldn't believe we just decided we would get in the car and go! We drove down to Pensacola, stopping at Steak N Shake for dinner, because obviously.  It was a little late by the time we got there, but we crashed and were up bright and early to hit the beach!

We spent the whole day relaxing and playing on the beach or in the water. It was gorgeous! It was hot, but there was a nice breeze. The water was the perfect temperature.

We ended the afternoon by renting a jet ski and taking little man out on one for his first time. It was fun to do that with him, but they definitely don't let you go far. An hour was plenty of time to putter around.

After that, we headed to the hotel to clean up and relax a bit. I think we were all a little drained from a day in the sun!

We had dinner at Peg Leg Pete's, and it was delicious. All of the seafood was so fresh that I'm pretty sure they caught it off their back porch. It made for a really great way to end our day.

We were up early again on Sunday to get in as much beach time as possible! We spent another 4-5 hours relaxing and playing in the sun!

We had enjoyed Peg Leg Pete's so much the night before that we decided to go again for a late lunch before we hit the road home.

It was a quick trip, but it was so worth it to be able to relax a bit on a beach and enjoy this kind of family time!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

DMB in Hotlanta

Adam and I spent the last weekend in May going to see Dave Matthews Band in Atlanta. We realized as we drove down on Friday that even though it's not far away and we've been through Atlanta umpteen dozen times, we've never really done much in the city. I think other than the DMB show he and I saw there in 2009 and then a few trips to Six Flags, I really haven't spent any time there other than in the airport.

When we got to town, we hit up the Sweetwater Brewery. We took the free tour and enjoyed the free samples (our favorite is Sweetwater Blue), but we felt completely out of place. It's hard to explain. We were too old. We were married. We weren't very preppy. It was sort of an odd feeling.

After the brewery, we headed downtown to The Vortex. Several friends recommended it, and it did not disappoint. Very cool vibe and really delicious burgers.

We decided to be tourists on Saturday and headed to The World of Coca-Cola. We opted for the VIP tour, and it was really neat to learn all sorts of things about coke. Trying the samples of soft drinks around the world was also pretty fun, although some were truly terrible.

Adam wanted to check out the fairly new College Football Hall of Fame, so we headed over there next after grabbing some hot dogs from a street vendor for lunch. 

By this point, it was time to head to the concert. It always feels like summer when it's time to see Dave!

The show was great, and we were seated next to some fun people. That always makes a DMB show even better.  The only negative of our whole trip was leaving the concert. It was clear that they had no concept of how to properly direct traffic to get out of the parking lot, so it took forever. By the time we finally left, we were cranky and hungry since we only had a snack at the show. Never fear - there was a Waffle House near our hotel. We hit it up and had what I think may very well be the very best WaHo experience I've ever had.

We slept in Sunday morning and then made the drive back to Nashville. We won't see DMB again until the end of the summer, but it'll be fun to follow the setlists over the next couple of months and think about what we might get to hear next time!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Oh hi!

May has been an incredibly busy month in our world! It's to the point where it's only May 21st, and I feel like this month has lasted 6 weeks.

It started off with a girls' weekend in Mexico at an all-inclusive resort. Stephanie and I have been BFF's for like 18 years now... which makes me feel old because we didn't meet until freshman year of high school.. Amanda and I met probably 13 years ago, and Jenny and I first met about 9 years ago. We're all connected in sort of random ways, and we all live in a different state. It was so great to meet up in Cancun and just relax on the beach, eat, drink, and catch up.

May is also race month for me... as in, the annual race I plan for my work.That has definitely been keeping me on my toes. I came back from Mexico relaxed, but I had to dive into the craziness of the final weeks of race planning!

I was supposed to have Lasik done early in the month, but unfortunately they had an issue with the laser and had to postpone me until June. It was a bummer, but what can you do?

On May 13, I turned 32. Adam surprised me with some really nice Reidel white wine glasses (and a bottle of much nicer wine than we'd typically pick up) and picked up breakfast for me at Chick-fil-A. Connor was home that night, and we had dinner and dessert with my parents and Adam's mom. It was a pretty low key but nice birthday!

In mid-May, I went on a field trip with Connor to Lucky Ladd Farms. It was definitely a fun day, and I was so glad to get to join him and his class. He has had a great year in first grade, and we have loved his teacher. It was a blast to get to hang out with them all day, although I'm confident I'd never do well with managing a group of 20 first graders day in and day out.

The look of sheer joy on Connor's face in this photo makes me so happy!

Connor had a couple of really good weeks with his behavior at school, so we got to go see the new Avengers movie. We took him to his very first IMAX, and I think it was pretty much the best day ever. He was so excited!

I really love this photo I snapped after the movie...

Our neighborhood pool opened in early May (It hit the 90s in the first week! But don't be fooled. Tonight the low is 46. Typical Tennessee weather.) In mid-May, we were able to break it in with Connor for the first time this season. I foresee many afternoons at the pool this summer!

I also got to join Connor and his class for their water day and end of year party. It was so much fun to see all the kids playing with the water activities, and I always enjoy chatting with the other moms. I suppose that means I am old, ha!

We've still got 10 more days left this month, but the busyness will end this weekend. My big race is coming up on Saturday, and after that I can rest a bit easier.

Summer officially starts next weekend when Adam and I hit up our first DMB show of the season...

With marriage, parenting, grad school, work, and life in general... there's just been a lot going on this month. It's been crazy and fun and stressful and draining all at the same time. I'm sort of ready for a break, but at the same time it's fulfilling.

All that to say, there's been very little time for blogging... but I'm still here. :)

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Feedback on My Second Stitch Fix

I decided to do a second Stitch Fix this past week as a little treat to myself for my upcoming birthday. I'm also going on a girls' trip soon with my BFFS, and it seemed like a good time to freshen up my wardrobe.

It's really exciting when the box comes in the mail. I love opening it to see what surprises are in store. I was super excited this time about all 5 pieces! I couldn't wait to try them on. My stylist also wrote the nicest note and wished me a happy birthday. If you decide you want to check it out, I'd love it if you'd use my referral link to do so. :)

Let's start with the ones I didn't keep.

I REALLY loved this dress. It's very much my style, and I knew it'd be fun to accessorize with! Unfortunately, the top part of it was just too big. I know it's supposed to be loose, but I could've taken in the straps an inch or two, and the arm holes were so big you could see almost all of my bra. And this almost-32-year-old isn't trendy enough to wear some sort of cute bralette that's ok to show or something like that. Oh well.

This photo in this dress isn't as unflattering as the first one I took. Believe me when I say that when viewing me from the front, this dress made me look wide. It just wasn't flattering, and it felt too big in the top. I think I've decided that I like wrap dresses on other people, but they're just not for me.

Now on to the things I kept! When I did my first fix, I felt like they did a great job of sending things that were my style. It just turned out that some of it didn't quite fit or wasn't quite what I needed in my wardrobe. I'm sort of doing the Stitch Fix thing to try to find some fun, unique things I might not normally find or buy at the mall. (Plus I hate to shop... so this is convenient).

This time around, I was even more impressed with how well a stranger picked out clothes for me! In fact, before I tried anything on, I thought there was a chance I'd keep all five items.

This maxi dress made the cut. I feel like this isn't the best photo ever, but this is actually really flattering on me. I had given up hope of ever finding a maxi dress. I always think other gals look so cute in them, but when I try them on they're either too long or too big in the top (chest/shoulders) or BOTH. So for this one to fit so well? Awesome. Adam really liked it, too. It was a little more than all the ones you se at Gap and Old Navy, but it also was really nice fabric that felt soft to the touch.

This tank top. So stinkin' unique! In the second picture, you can see the back is split. I really love the pattern and colors, and it's just totally different from anything else I have. It also looked really cute with my skinny jeans and with my white skirt and white shorts. It was a no brainer to keep it. Plus, Adam really liked it!

I also kept this tunic. I really loved the colors, and it felt super comfortable. It's way more "flowy" than what I usually wear, but it looked awesome with my skinny jeans. I decided it was unique, and it was a fun item to add to my wardrobe since I don't have anything like it.

So there you have it. My second Stitch Fix. If you're thinking about trying it out, please use my referral link. I had two friends who did after my first one, and it was awesome to save a few dollars on this birthday present to myself. I'd much appreciate anyone who wants to use the link to try it out!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Join Me for the Beyond the Battlefield 5K/10K/Virtual Race

As some of you may know, I work for a non-profit program called Courage Beyond. We provide confidential, no-cost programs and services to service members, veterans, and their loved ones who are impacted by PTSD and other invisible wounds of war.

Our biggest event of the year is the 4th Annual Beyond the Battlefield 5K/10K, and it's coming up Saturday, May 23rd in Brentwood, TN or virtually from wherever you live! There is a way for everyone to get involved at this event during Memorial Day weekend to help us honor fallen soldiers and remember the rest who have returned from war. I'd love it if you'd consider joining us in some way!

Here are more details on the various ways to get involved:

NEW this Year – Virtual Race: We’ve added a virtual race to this year’s Beyond the Battlefield event!  Anyone can run with us virtually from wherever they are located if they can’t join us in person on race day. Learn more and register on the race website. Our goal is to have all 50 states represented! Virtual runners can sign up for free or pay $25 to receive the race t-shirt.

Register for the 5K or 10K: If you're in the area, join us for the physical race! We welcome every one of all ages to run, walk, skip, juggle, crawl or whatever it takes to get from the start to the finish of either race! Dogs on leashes and strollers are welcome if you don’t mind staying at the back of the pack.  Our course runs through the beautiful Maryland Farms and the early start will help ensure we avoid the heat of the day.  All registrants receive the event t-shirt, and age group awards are given three deep per bracket for both races. Register here today!

Volunteer on Race Day: We need at least 50-60 volunteers to make this event a success! If you're in the area, this is a great way to show your support. Volunteers pass out t-shirts, serve as course monitors/encouragers, work at a water station, oversee food and drinks, and more! Even if you’re already signed up for the race, please share this opportunity with anyone you know who may enjoy serving in this way.  Volunteers will receive the event t-shirt and have a lot of fun!

Fundraise or Make a Donation: In addition to race registrations and business sponsorships, Courage Beyond raises even more money through this event through additional donations and fundraisers. Consider making an additional one-time donation by clicking DONATE on the race website. Additionally, you can create your own personal fundraising page that can be shared with friends and family to ask them to consider making a donation to Courage Beyond. Just click on FUNDRAISE on the race website. The more donations we receive, the closer we come to reaching our fundraising goal for this event!

Promote the Race: Please help us spread the word to everyone you know about this event and encourage others to join us! 

All proceeds from this race will be used to directly provide confidential, no-cost programs and services to our nation’s military members and their loved ones. Learn more at

Let me know if you have any questions!

Friday, April 17, 2015

TR3 at City Winery

If you know me at all (whether in real life or online), you know Adam and I are big Dave Matthews Band fans. If you don't follow DMB, this post may not be as exciting to you.

Tim Reynolds is an amazing guitar player who tours with DMB. He definitely adds something to the music that is just incredible, and we always love seeing him out there with them.

When we caught wind that he was playing a show with his band TR3 at a local Nashville venue (and tickets were only $15) it was a no-brainer to make the last minute decision to go! We hadn't been to City Winery yet, so we were excited to check it.

We managed to get pretty awesome seats at a table right in front of the stage. We went early so we could eat dinner there. It ended up being the kind of meal that was fun to do once, but if we see other shows here we'll eat before we go. We ended up doing a cheese board and a couple of small plates. The food was good, but it was pricey and not THAT good. Nonetheless, it was fun to do it once.

By the time we finished eating, the band took the stage. I'm not kidding when I say we were close. I' not even zoomed in for this photo.

We didn't really know what to expect considering we've only ever seen Tim with DMB, but it turned out to be an incredible show! His bassist and drummer were also awesome, and we got a kick out of the facial expressions as they played.

After the show, we bought their recent album and hung around for a bit. We're glad we did because the band came out to mingle with the handful of us still there. We got to meet all three guys and chat with them a bit. It was awesome! We let Tim know we'd be seeing him again at a few DMB shows this summer.

I'm so glad to be living back in Nashville where we get to easily see these kinds of awesome shows!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

A Second Nashville Snow

During the first week of March, Nashville saw snow. It's crazy because a) it's really late in the winter for getting snow here and b) we just don't get much snow here, and this was the second "winter event" we saw this year!

This time it was mostly snow instead of ice, and I have to admit it was really pretty! Nonetheless, the schools shut down and people stayed home. We enjoyed a few days cozied up in the house, but I did insist we do a little sledding. Adam and I discovered our backyard is pretty fun on a sled one afternoon, so when Connor got home we got up early one morning to take advantage before it started to melt.

The house and yard covered in snow.

I loved discovering some tracks in the snow on our deck. We have a wooded area behind our house and see tons of critters like deer, turkey, squirrels, and rabbits. We've also seen an owl one night and a bunch of bats. I think these are either rabbit or squirrel tracks.

The view from our front door the first morning after the snow.

Connor and me doing some sledding. You can see it was starting to melt by that point, but we still had a blast for a bit!

Adam snapped this of me when I didn't know he was taking one. I actually sort of like it!

My boys in the snow!

In true Tennessee fashion, it was sunny and 60 degrees a few days after it snowed. HA!