Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Our 3rd Valentine's Day

This year made for our 3rd Valentine's Day together, and only our 2nd as husband and wife. Since we've had a lot going on over the last year, we agreed again that a date or two was all we needed to celebrate the day of love.

Adam surprised me a few days before the holiday with some gorgeous roses. It's been so nice to have them sitting in our kitchen to brighten things up a bit during this dreary time of year.

Our Valentine's Day started out with us sleeping in and then cooking breakfast together. We also had gotten each other a card. 

We had decided we'd work on a few odds and ends around the house during the afternoon, but our plans quickly changed when the center diamond on my engagement ring plopped out onto the counter.

After a few tears (mine) and a phone call to the store where he bought it (him), we were in the car heading over there to drop it off for repair. Fortunately, they were able to take care of it right away and all was well.

We got all dressed up and checked out a relatively new Nashville restaurant Noelle for our Valentine dinner. We had a delicious meal and then headed back home to cozy up for the rest of the evening.

The day after Valentine's Day, Adam told me he had planned a surprise date. We got in the car and after a drive across town, we arrive at Arrington Vineyards. He had planned for us to do a special wine, cheese and sweets tasting!

Everything was delicious, and we had a lot of fun trying everything together and chatting with some of the others who were doing the tasting with us. We ended up buying a few bottles to take home to enjoy later.

All in all, it was a really fun Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

My First Stitch Fix - Feedback

I decided to try this whole Stitch Fix thing that everyone keeps talking about, and I was really impressed! I sort of hate shopping, and I really hate trying on item after item that doesn't fit. However, I could use some new items in my wardrobe and thought this might be a good way to make it happen without the hassle of the mall.

I am mostly writing this post so I can pin it to my style board and give even more feedback to my stylist. It's really cool you can link a Pinterest board so that they can see what you like in general, so I thought it'd be useful to show them pictures of me in the items.

I was impressed with how much I liked all 5 items when I took them out of the box. They were all very much my style to have been selected by someone who only had a Pinterest board and my style profile to know me from. It was all pretty spot on, and ultimately I only sent back so much of it because of small details that I'll expound on below.

People say that as you work through the first few fixes, they get even better at picking things you love - so I'm excited to try it again sometime.

Here are photos of me with the five items I received in my first box and my feedback:

These pants. I knew they were going to be too small when I held them up, even though they were marked as my size. They went beyond skinny jeans and felt like they were painted on. It was uncomfortable. They were also too long. Ironically, they were a perfect fit in my waist - which I have a hard time finding in pants.

I liked this sweater a lot, but I have another sweater that is VERY similar. So it was an easy decision to send this one back, too.

This sweater is the only item I kept. It's incredibly cozy, and I liked that it was unique from other more typical sweaters that I already own.

I really loved this top. I loved the colors, the stripes, and the sheerness. What I did not love was how the sleeves had points on them. I don't think they were made to be pointy, but the way the fabric was sewn together caused them to point up. It didn't seem promising that they would soften, and I'm not one to keep something that I have any sort of quirky issue with. I think if it had been sleeveless then I absolutely would have kept it.

Adam and I both liked this dress. Ultimately, it was just a bit pricier than what I want to spend on a casual dress of this type.

If you've never done Stitch Fix and want to try it, I highly recommend. They offer $25 account credits to folks when people sign up via a referral link, so here's mine if you want to check it out -

Happy shopping!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Birthday Shenanigans

This past weekend, we had a terrific time celebrating Connor's 7th birthday!

Adam's mom also has a birthday around this same time, just a few days after Connor's. So on Thursday evening, we took everyone to the Predators game. Sadly, they lost - but we still had a lot of fun!

Friday evening we just hung around the house, and we started Saturday morning with breakfast from Chick-fil-A (a family favorite!) We knew that Connor and Gram both would enjoy an afternoon together for both of their birthdays, so we dropped Connor off and headed to another Preds game for a few hours. This time they won!

After the game, we met up with Gram, Connor and my parents and sister at Rainforest Cafe for little man's special birthday dinner. He loved the restaurant and all of the rainforest decor!

After dinner, we headed back to the house for presents! He loved all the fun things that we all picked out for him. 

One of the things that Adam has done for Connor every year is "adopt" an animal for him through World Wildlife Fund. You get a stuffed animal when you do, so he has all of them on his bed. This year we picked out the elephant, and he loved it!

Adam and I also got him a Home Depot work bench two birthdays ago, so this year we got him a toolbox and another set of a bunch of really awesome tools. He is so excited about them!

On Sunday, we had all of his friends from the neighborhood over to have some cake and then play in the back yard since it was a reasonably nice day. He had a blast!

It was such a fun weekend! It's crazy to think he was just a 4-year-old little squirt when I met him, and now he's a little man!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Our Son is Seven!

On January 31st, our son Connor turned seven!

It's hard to believe he's already gone from a little 4-year-old squirt when I first met him to this tall, smart kid! It's crazy how quickly time passes.

This year, he had his birthday day with his mom, so we're doing most of our celebrations when he's home this weekend. However, we did go to school on Friday (the day before his birthday) to have lunch with him and take a few treats to his class. We had so much fun!

On Saturday, we spent some time on the phone with him to wish him happy birthday and to call all the grandparents and my sister so that they could do the same. It was so cute to hear how excited he was about his special day!

January 31st is not just Conno'rs birthday. It's also the day Adam became a daddy! So we spent our afternoon celebrating this fact by checking out some places around Nashville that we've never been to before.  We spent some time first exploring Marathon Village, wandering in and out of the cute shops.

We also toured the Greenbrier Distillery. It was really neat because the distillery was reopened after over 100 years last year. It'll be a few years before they actually have their product ready, but it was cool to tour and try their white whiskey.

We wandered around Centennial Park for a bit to kill some time, and we decided we'll have to come sometime when it's pretty outside and do a picnic in the park and actually go inside The Parthenon.

I don't have any pictures, but we concluded our day with a tour at Black Abbey Brewery. It's a relatively new brewery in Nashville, and we enjoyed our sample.

It made for a pretty fun day, but we can't wait for Connor to get home tomorrow and start a weekend of celebrating him!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Day Trip to the Biltmore

During our weekend in Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains, Adam and I made sort of a last minute decision to drive to Asheville, NC one day and tour the Biltmore Estate.

We were not disappointed! We headed out early, and we were there about an hour and a half later.

I was pretty excited because it was the very last day of Christmas at Biltmore. I had heard the house is gorgeous decorated for Christmas, so I knew I'd love it!

The decorations started from right outside the front door!

I wish I could describe how amazing the inside of the house is to see, and how much more incredible it was to see the Christmas decorations! They won't let you take pictures inside, but if you have no idea what I'm talking about then take a few minutes to Google it.

I had been once before when I was about 7 or 8, but I only remembered a few small pieces. Adam had never been. It was pretty cool wandering through the house and seeing what it was like back in the late 1800s/early 1900s when people lived there!

I splurged and bought the Christmas at Biltmore book that had photos of the rooms with the decorations. It helped that it was on sale half off!

It also helped that it was the off-season while we were there. I read reviews that it can get very crowded during the spring/summer/holidays, but there was hardly anyone there that day. It definitely made it a relaxed and pleasant experience to not feel like we were in crowded rooms.

After touring the house, we went over to Antler Hill Village. It's also on the property, but it's a lot of new stuff like a big Inn up on the hill and the Biltmore Winery.

We spent a decent bit of time at the winery. They offer free tastings, and you're able to taste as many of their wines as you desire! We definitely found a few that we enjoyed enough to buy a bottle and bring home!

We truly spent 7-8 hours hanging out at the various places on the estate before grabbing some dinner and hitting the road back to Asheville. It made for a really lovely day, and it was a fun thing for us to do together!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Winter Weekend in the Mountains

It's only about a 3 hour drive to the Great Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee. Adam and I both love heading that direction from time to time, so we decided to take a weekend earlier in January for a little winter getaway.

We drove in on Friday evening, and I loved seeing the Christmas lights in Gatlinburg. They leave them up throughout January for Winterfest, and it's really charming.

After checking into our hotel, we wandered around for a bit. I am a total nerd and posed in the sled.

It's ok though because Adam is a total nerd and posed with the Avengers. 

If you don't know anything about Gatlinburg, it's a totally touristy town at the foot of the national park. There are a lot of cheesy attractions among cute shops, and the whole place is sort of like going back in time.

On Saturday, we did some shopping and wine tasting in Pigeon Forge before going up into the park to do some hiking. It was pretty cold, but we bundled up and made our way to Laurel Falls.  Parts of it were frozen solid!

We also decided to be cheesy and do the Ripley's Believe It or Not Odditorium. Here we saw things like a statue of the world's tallest man.

Or a large chair...

Or a screen where you could take photos of your shadows...

We also did the Mirror Maze. It was sort of small and sad, but we made it fun!

We also ate a lot of southern fare during our weekend...

And we checked out the local bar scene when we found the ONLY place in town that had the national championship game on with sound. (Who knew that was going to be so hard?)

It was sort of rainy the last night, and there was pretty much no one out and about... so I took this photo in the middle of the road.

It was a different experience going this time of year. I've usually gone during more of their peak season when the place is crowded!  Regardless, it was fun for Adam and I to get away together and relax a bit. Sometimes it's just nice to get away from the house and not have to worry about chores and such!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Celebrity Sightings in Nashville

Adam and I love going to Predators games here in Nashville, so we opted to get a pack of tickets to a few games throughout the season. Boy are we glad we did as they are having an excellent season!

Our first game in the new year was against the Dallas Stars on January 8th.

I'm a fan of the show Nashville, so I was excited when Charles Esten came out to play with the band after the first period.

In between the second and third period, he played again... but this time, Vince Gill joined him! It was sort of funny because Vince had a guitar strap that said Deacon (the character Esten plays on the show).

Shortly after, the video guys found a few more Nashville cast members sitting in the stands taking in the game - Oliver Hudson and Will Chase. I love that they were all out supporting the Preds!

I have no doubt Carrie Underwood was there as well judging from her Twitter account (she's married to Preds player Mike Fisher), but I get the sense she hangs out somewhere behind the scenes.

You just never know who you're going to see when you go anywhere or do anything around Nashville. Sort of like when Garth Brooks came on stage during the Justin Timberlake concert last month!

The Preds beat the Stars in overtime, and we went home happy about our fun evening out on the town in our favorite city.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Odds and Ends from Christmas Break

Adam and I were both off work from Christmas Eve through January 5th for the holidays. Connor was with us for a full week during his break from school, and it also gave us a few days to get a few projects done around the house (including taking down all the Christmas decorations and some cleaning).

While a lot of our week with Connor was spent celebrating Christmas and New Year's, we also got to do some shopping one day, spend some more time with family and friends, and just hang around the house playing with all the new Christmas gifts.

We let little man try out the new scooter in the house, but then it went to the garage to wait for warmer weather. All the neighborhood kids have one, so he'll love playing out there with it!

This kid loves his new Spy Gear so much that when we got him out of bed one morning we discovered he slept in the watch!

Connor spent a Toys R Us gift card on this table top pool table. He loves it! (And don't worry, the wine belongs to one of the adults!)

He also really enjoyed this Sega game that has 80 games on it! What an awesome gift from Santa!

Before you think it's all fun and games, little man did end up with a chore or two. We have plans to eventually pull out the carpet in the vanity area of his bathroom (that is shared with another bedroom that will hopefully belong to another child someday). I'm not sure why anyone thought it was a good idea to have carpet in there! Nonetheless, I'm not sure what the heck this kid does to get toothpaste all over the place so he's learning how to clean it up!

Before we took Connor back to his other home, we had breakfast together at one of his and Adam's favorite spots - Cracker Barrel. It's not really one of my favorites, but I love these boys lots so we went! It was a nice little treat before ending his break!

We had so much fun during our week with Connor and our week and a half off work! It was definitely refreshing to spend time focusing on family and fun times!