Favorite Posts of 2019

While I’ve only been blogging for about 4.5 years, it’s really crazy to look back on when I first started to the present. So much has changed in my life and in my little space on the world wide web. I wanted to do a round-up of some of my favorite posts and memories in 2019. These aren’t based on statistics related to views or anything. Just times I love to look back on that give me a big smile. I hope you enjoy this walk down ole memory lane with me!

(1) Under the Sea: Matt and I visited the Chattanooga Aquarium after dining at Naked Foods Chatt, and it was just a positively amazing weekend!

(2) We’re Off to See the Wizard: Kaci and I had the pleasure of seeing the Wizard of Oz on the big screen, and it truly gave me chills! It was shown in celebration of its 80th anniversary.

(3) Re-energized, Rejuvenated, Recharged: This was just a fun weekend from start to finish! Kaci and I took a succulent class at Stanley’s Greenhouse, and while sadly, they didn’t make it through the winter, I was very proud of my arrangement! We managed to include a lot of great food in this weekend too.

(4) Rain Showers, A Bridal Shower, & a Visit to Biltmore!: I got to attend my friend’s fun bridal shower, and Matt and I were very grateful for another one of my friends for giving us a free day pass to Biltmore. We had only visited the first time on our honeymoon, so it felt special to return!

(5) She Had Magic Legs: 2019 was the first year I participated in the Lucky Kidney Run, and it did feel great to participate in a worthy cause towards bringing awareness to kidney disease. It was a really tough run as I hadn’t been running but instead was doing Barre3. I still think that helped me tremendously.

(6) Amazing Friends, K Brew Expansion, & Barre3 Intuitive + Mindful Eating Workshop: I never imagined Kaci and I would be holding our own workshop at our favorite studio, but we felt so honored to share the message of Intuitive Eating and Mindful Eating! Since then, I’ve had two or three attendees come up to me to tell them how helpful our class was and that they bought the book and began to incorporate the principles into their work with patients. ❤ So fulfilling.

(7) It Was a Treat Yo Self Kind of Weekend: Aside from poor Matt’s rash and sinus infection, this was a fun weekend! Kaci and I attended the Retropolitan Craft Fair, which they hold one in the spring and one during the holidays. Our visits get better each time! We love to support local and get out in our community.

(8) Taking Things to New Heights: After living here for our whole lives, Matt and I finally went up into the Knoxville Sunsphere for the first time!

(9) Thankful for the Brave Who Sacrificed for Our Freedom: This weekend was so epic and filled my heart! Time with one of our best friends and her sweet family at our lake house then a hike on Max Patch with the most gorgeous weather with Kase, D, and Axl.

(10) Here’s to Another Spectacular Year: Our 31st birthday weekend!

(11) Living It Up Nashville Style: For the second year in a row, Matt and I took a weekend trip together to celebrate my birthday, and this past year we visited Nashville. We had such an incredible time! Our AirBnB was awesome, and it turned out to be exactly the trip we needed.

(12) July 4th Weekend Part 1 and Part 2: This was the best July 4th I had enjoyed yet!

(13) Weekend Spent at the Track: Matt performed really well in his race, and we had a wonderful weekend! Well, except for me falling on the metal bleachers. Ha! Klutzy for life. Then we capped it off by getting to visit with one of my best friends and her sweet family as they had just moved to OH!

(14) ‘I Love Lucy’ on the Big Screen!: Another moment in which I watched my favorite show, in amazing color, on the big screen, and it truly gave me chills! I never thought I would get to experience this. I so loved dressing the part too to honor Lucille Ball and her amazing fashion.

(15) Early Third Wedding Anniversary Celebration: When Matt and I enjoyed the Ruby Falls Salad from Naked Foods, I said how I wanted to visit Ruby Falls one day. Well, we finally did! That and See Rock City, and despite it raining, I had such a good time. Then I put together a last-minute scarecrow Halloween costume for Cruze Farm’s Trunk-or-Treat, and what a super fun event! Yes, I’m in my 30’s, but I love getting dressed up and keeping my kid-at-heart mentality alive.

(16) FNCE 2019 Recap 1 and Recap 2: I had only attended FNCE once before in 2015 when I presented my thesis project, and it was in Nashville. This past year it was held in Philadelphia, and I didn’t know anyone personally, but I didn’t let that stop me. I met some incredible RD’s who I consider friends now, and I met several who I knew via social media but now I know in real life. Everyone was just as they are online, and I felt so fortunate to be in their presence!

Even though our holidays are worth mentioning again, I figured I would stop here since they were recent. Suffice it to say, 2019 treated me so well! Yes, there were some rough times, challenges, and not-so-pleasant experiences. But the good far outweighs the bad, and putting together this post further reinforced how much I have to be thankful for. I hope you all have a fantastic Friday and first weekend of 2020!

 

Living It Up Nashville Style

I honestly am not even sure where to begin. This past weekend Matt and I stayed in Nashville, TN for a little getaway trip, and it far exceeded my expectations! Our honeymoon aside, this was the best trip I’ve taken and that we’ve taken together. It was unbelievably perfect. I just kept snapping away, so I have a lot of photos. I’ll try to let them do the talking, but my post just won’t do it full justice.

Friday

Thanks to Mackenzie‘s inspiration, I made us a spinach/banana/avocado smoothie for breakfast. I topped my bowl with Kashi Go cereal, Grape Nuts, and peanut butter. It was so refreshing!

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After I got ready and we loaded up the car, we had to take our typical shot out front. ❤

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Once we got to Cookeville, we stopped for lunch at Chick-fil-a. We were starving! I failed to pack snacks well this trip. Whoopsies. Two thumbs up for fooood.

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I went with their deluxe grilled chicken sandwich but forgot to specify my cheese, so I got American. Not what I wanted but still tasty. I snagged a few fries from Matt.

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Love him! We are huge goofballs.

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The glorious Airbnb that we stayed at!!

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Our host, Anna is an interior designer, photo stylist, consultant, and art director. Her home absolutely exudes this as she is tremendously talented!

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Both sides of the fireplace were stunning, and I just adored the wallpaper throughout.

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I love how she layered different rugs together. So funky!

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Matt said the painting of the baby looks like he/she is trying to take a selfie. Ha!

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This was Babaloo, her sweet dog who greeted us when we arrived. She was so cute!

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Our room was a dream.

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I loved these pieces of art.

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Toilet humor, lolol

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Holy relaxation. Claw foot tub, turquoise walls, chandelier. This whole house and bathroom screamed my name.

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I am all for fun photo ops, and Matt sweetly obliges me. 😉

We met Anna as we were leaving to grab a few things from Kroger. She was so sweet and inviting!

It was then time to get ready for dinner.

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We chose to eat at The Wild Cow, and it was a wonderful choice.

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Matt tried this Gypsy gf cider, and I tried a sip. It was really good! Not overly sweet or dry plus gypsy was in the name. 😉

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Buffalo tempeh, hello flavor town.

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Lentil stew over rice. We were both super pleased with this dish!

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Sweet spicy tofu stir fry. I actually loved this entree the most!

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We stopped on the way back to our Airbnb to take advantage of this fun wall mural.

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We decided to go on a walk around the neighborhood. We love to explore by foot.

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We saw a home for sale and tried to guess the price. We said between $400 and $500,000…it was 1,650,000. O_o Then the darkest clouds came over head and the wind picked up big time, so we ran all the way home. I was still in my sandals too, and honestly, it was exhilarating! So fun to get caught in the rain sometimes. It never poured on us, and we made it back in time.

Funny story: Anna accidentally told Matt a container was sugar when it was salt. So he made a second mug of tea and chose from the other container, which was still salt. Hahaha. One of Anna’s friends stayed with her over the weekend, and we loved getting to know them both. We were all cracking up, but Anna’s friend insisted Matt make a third mug. Three times a charm, he finally got a lovely mug of tea. Success!

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Anna has a cat named Amaretto. He was rescued from outside a liquor store, and he was so friendly!

After kitty snuggles, it was finally time to call it a night and get some good sleep.

Saturday

We started with coffee and a light breakfast. We split a package of KIND breakfast bars, and I had cottage cheese. I love this Anthropologie mug!

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I did remember to bring my Polaroid, but this was the only photo I took. Tried to be all arsty. Loved this wallpaper.

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Anna loves owls too!

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Barre3 anywhere! I completed a 30-minute workout and felt so good afterwards.

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I think I need to start a series called, “Kori’s feet and interesting grounds/floors/rugs”. Ha!

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Anna told us about this gf bakery, so we went there first.

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Despite being married to a blogger, Matt almost took a bite before I could get a photo. Lolz. So he personalized the lemon blueberry muffin with his bite mark.

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Anna also suggested we check out the farmers market and nearby church garage sale, both of which turned out to be perfect!

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Juice samples.

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We both loved the “Lemon Drop”, so we bought one bottle.

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The garage sale was a huge success! I found a Threshold mug for $0.25, a pitcher for $3, and a framed owl artwork for only $30!

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One of the main reasons I was so excited to go to Nashville was to visit The Catio Cafe. It was amazing!

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The barista was so sweet and offered to wash my mug so that I could use it for my coffee. A new favorite of mine!

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Catssssss. You can take the cat people out of Knoxville, but you can’t keep them from the cats. Something like that.

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Precious! Matt is the cat whisperer.

Ya girl will always include the outtakes.

I enjoyed one of their vegan hot pockets, and it was full o’ flavor.

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I followed along on Instagram while the cafe came together, and I’m obsessed with the wallpaper and design. Can you tell that I will be including wallpaper in our home one day? The only trouble will be deciding on which one!

We so loved speaking with the staff and snuggling the babies. After we left, we found a few more murals to take photos of before heading back to our place.

We decided to walk to the cute shop we had seen during our walk on Friday, and I found a really pretty necklace. The shop employee was really sweet and fun to talk with!

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Our owl artwork! Matt spotted this and encouraged me to get it, and I’m so thankful he did. It’s lovely.

We also bought this bouquet of amaranth at the farmers market. I had never seen amaranth blooms, and they are stunning!

I trimmed the stems and fit them inside the pitcher we bought. Again, Matt is to thank for suggesting we look for a vase while at the garage sale. I just love him.

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Anna had hosted a wine tasting party, and one of her guests and neighbors offered to take our photo.

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Amaretto was not a fan of his dog, though. Ha!

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We had enjoyed our leftovers from The Wild cow for a late lunch then finally got ready for dinner as we were getting really hungry. Anna’s friend was super sweet and offered to take our photo and did so in several places for plenty to cherish!

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We were cheesin’ hard because Matt said, “I look stoned” when she showed us a photo she had taken. So then she said it right as she snapped this one. The best!

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She took this, and I love the sunlight!

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The stairs that led up to our room.

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Our prom pose. 😉

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My pretty necklace.

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We chose to dine at Amerigo, and they offered gf pasta, which was so nice.

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The wait was almost an hour, so of course I SnapChatted. I love this!

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Bread and dipping oil, yum.

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They prepared their gf pizza crust as gf bread for Matt to enjoy. Very appreciated!

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I had their Scallops Veneto, which included blackened jumbo scallops, white bean and arugula succotash, pancetta, basil walnut pesto. The scallops were cooked so well! They were not chewy, the succotash was perfect, and I loved the pesto.

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Matt had the Fettuccine Imperial with grilled chicken, pancetta, mushrooms, Parmesan cream sauce. I loved how tender the chicken was, the mushrooms were meaty, and the sauce was smooth. A wonderful combination!

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I always love to leave a note when possible to let the staff know how wonderful they all did in taking care of us.

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We decided to walk around the area and down to the Vanderbilt Medical Center. I had an irregular heart rate that was corrected via a heart ablation in July 2003 at Vandy, so it felt special.

Photo op

Ha!

Apparently Vandy is the place to party if you’re a rabbit.

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The sunset was stunning.

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Matt suggested the Boomerang, and it was a fabulous idea. We didn’t walk over the children’s hospital where I had it done, but this was fun to do.

The restaurant looked so pretty as we walked back to the car.

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We dropped off our leftovers then walked down to none other than Jeni’s Ice Cream! There was a line as always because they are so good. I first tried Jeni’s in March of 2013 during my dietetic internship.

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Wildberry Lavender for Matt and Gooey Butter Cake for moi. I sometimes choke when trying to choose a flavor, but this was the absolute best. I knew I had chosen correctly upon first bite.

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Once we got back, I got into the claw foot tub with soaking salt and just relaxed.

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Sunday

I had a Chobani wild blueberry cup with almonds and a peach for breakfast. The peach wasn’t all that great, unfortunately.

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I completed a 10-minute calm Barre3 flow on the screened in porch. It was wonderful.

Here is our noted in her book. The two dried blooms came from the shop where I bought my necklace. The sweet girl gave them to us!

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As completely sad as it was to do, we packed up and checked out.

Matt found this brunch spot, and not only did the food sound incredibly, but it included an owl!

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My cafe au lait with soy milk.

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Matt ordered their breakfast quinoa bowl with Brussels sprouts, house made kimchi, sprouts, potatoes, egg, and a peanut dressing. He added an egg and a side of bacon. This was unbelievably amazing. We’ll need to recreate it!

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I chose their gf sweet potato biscuit with cheese, fluffy egg, and pecan vegetarian sausage. I dipped it in the peanut sauce, and I highly recommend this combo.

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Once our stomachs were happy, we decided to explore a little before hitting the road. Matt noticed these artistic poles.

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I’ve never been to an Olive and Sinclair store, but unfortunately, they were closed.

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Once again per Anna’s suggestion, we checked out the Shoppes on Fatherland. Super cute district!

I wanted these so bad but had to resist.

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Tried to again be artsy and creative. 😉

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I love him so very much. He certainly made this weekend absolutely perfect.

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Once we got back home and settled, I set up our new arrangement in our room. It adds so much pizazz! Rachel’s eyes became huge when she saw it. Girlfriend wanted to eat them so badly!

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Matt suggested I get a shirt, and it was too perfect not to! An owl, coffee, and turquoise. Me to a t.

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Y’all that finally concludes the most epic on epic weekend trips we’ve taken thus far. I so appreciate you reading and enjoying my recap. Let me know if you have any must-visit places!

 

Here’s to Another Spectacular Year!

Somehow another year has flown by, and Kaci and I are now 31. Whoa. This past year, while certainly challenging at times, was a year of growth, love, fun, and truly one for the books. Had Mason still been with us, it would’ve been near perfect. He’s always in our hearts, though. I will try to keep my words short and again allow the photos to do all the talkin’.

Friday

I started the day with my last everything bagel topped with fresh tomato, scrambled egg and leftover baked wild caught salmon, and plant-based avocado pesto spread; black grapes on the side. It was amazing!

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Sleepy babies!

Outfit on my last Friday at 30.

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K Brew’s latest spritz, the Paloma: grapefruit syrup, signature espresso, and Fevertree tonic. SO. GOOD.

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It was a salad and pizza kinda night! This pizza had a sweet potato crust and chicken sausage. ‘Twas tasty!

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Snackage out of the pb jar while watching Lucifer. Tom Ellis is my celebrity crush. Love this show!

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Saturday

My use of leftover salmon was going strong! Hummus avocado toast with salmon, garlic oil Cholula hot sauce, and grapes.

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Mid-morning fuel after Matt and I completed a quick Kroger trip. Then it was off to the lake house to meet Kaci, Drew, and Axl!

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Had to get our group shot! Axl’s face kills me! Lolol

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Is Kaci not adorable in her new suit? Check out Axl in the lower left corner, ha!

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Our dude!

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D’s classic sideways shot. It’s his signature photo. 😉

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Would ya believe I remembered my Polaroid? Trying to be artsy.

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Snack in the sunshine.

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The boys chattin’ away.

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Paradise.

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SnapChats because why not.

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My main squeeze!!

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Gotta be goofy!

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Hahahahaha

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Fresh fruit with some almond butter.

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Matt spoiled us! He made us two racks of ribs, and we simmered Bush’s maple bourbon grillin’ beans, enjoyed Kroger’s Private Selection southwestern potato salad (all their classic potato salads contained wheat germ, unfortunately), and steamed green beans.

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Loren’s gf chocolate chunk cookies x 2. I went back for another!

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Matt took this before we left. ❤

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Sunday // Father’s Day

I ate a light breakfast because we were meeting Kaci and Drew for brunch at First Watch. Fresh fruit, Grape Nuts, and milk in the almond butter jar.

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My amazing dad has been the most loving, supportive person, and I’m incredibly grateful for him!!

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One of my favorite photos of us! From dancing in the living room to our father-daughter dance at my wedding. ❤

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Matt, the most amazing cat dad ever! He loves our babies so fiercely and takes amazing care of them.

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This filter was so perfect!

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Their fresh crab omelet is so full of flavor! I also just love their toast. So thick and perfect.

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We don’t normally order the same thing so that we can try each other’s, but it was too good to pass up. Unfortunately, they misunderstood he wanted the greens but to add potatoes. Oh well! We aren’t ones to fuss.

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After fueling up we four and our trail guide, Axl headed to Ijam’s Nature Center. It was hot but such a gorgeous day!

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Barre3 anywhere!

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There’s a baby turtle on the end then maybe the mom. They were so cute!

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We hiked about two miles, and I had such a blast.

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While Matt went to dinner with his dad and second oldest brother, I stayed back and meal planned, cleaned, and cooked. Snack plate.

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I highly recommend Alexis’ Vegan Peanut Butter Zucchini Bars! I added walnuts on top, and they are so fudge-y and satisfying.

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I enjoyed the second half of my omelet with green beans, quinoa with marinated artichoke salad, and the last of our potato salad. Hit the spot!

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My evening snack included Greek yogurt, frozen banana, Grape Nuts, and pb.

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I was still hungry later, so I had some nuts and chocolate.

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Monday //  My birthday!

Birthday pancakes topped with thawed fruit, tahini, Greek yogurt, maple, and sunflower seeds.

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Kaci and I switched dresses, and I loved her maxi!

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My step-mom shared this photo, and I love it! Kaci still had longer hair, I had quite the bed-head, and I love our ruffle butts. Ha!

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My dad surprised me with the most colorful, beautiful bouquet!!

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Matchy matchy! We were so grateful that Barre3 gave us each a free class for our birthday.

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They helped us to feel incredibly special and loved! They sang to us, Mila gave us a shout out before class, and then she played happy birthday as we all filed out of class. Several years ago, I never would’ve thought I’d be recognized, much less loved, this much as our Barre3 studio. I just love them so much. Another attendee said, “isn’t it a blessing to move on your birthday? It’s like thanking your body”. AMEN.

Kaci and I then had dinner at Whole Foods! I loved getting to eat with her and chat up a storm.

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Delish cookies for a suh-weet finish.

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And that’s a wrap! I appreciate each and every one who took the time to wish me a happy birthday, and I appreciate everyone who chooses to read my blog. Here’s to another wonderful year!

The Absolute Best Birthday Celebration!! // 30 is The New 20

I want to begin by thanking Kaci for organizing and coordinating our very best birthday to date. She did an amazing job! Also, I cannot thank Sara of Sara Miller Photography enough for capturing these photos for us! These are just some of the many she got from our gathering at The Hive, the cutest event space anywhere. Lastly, Kendale Ball, chef and mastermind behind Simpl Food Arts made us the most delicious food that everyone couldn’t get enough of!

I’m  mostly going to just let the photos speak for themselves with some captions here and there. Thank you to all who came out and celebrated with us!!

Kaci made all 48 cupcakes herself using Pillsbury’s natural cupcake and buttercream products. They were outstanding.

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I chose a cherry pie from Old Milly Bread Company, and thanks to Matt, we were able to transfer it to my Pioneer Woman pie dish.

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Caprese skewers with balsamic reduction, jalapeno pimiento cheese with GF crackers, grilled vegetable skewers, and roasted chicken skewers that are not shown below.

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We decided to use gold for Kaci and silver for me to honor each of our unique vibes. 🙂

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When we were born, our mom joked that she got “scared”, so Kaci was nicknamed Boo as she was born first, and I became Boo Boo. We call each other that, so this was my birthday card to her. 🙂

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We both wore our wedding shoes. ❤

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Clearly I’m very expressive with my face, ha!

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When food is life.

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29 and holding!

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I love these next two of Drew!

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Chef Kendale

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This chair felt so royal and fancy!

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If you can’t be goofy, then you just aren’t living life fully enough.

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Group shot!

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Trissa is an absolute angel and the sweetest!! A work obligation caused her to run late, but rather than miss it altogether, she came by and got to spend time with us. It meant the world to see her!

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Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving

Friday

Well, y’all, it happened. Kaci and I officially crossed over and entered our third decade! It is admittedly hard to identify as a 30 year old simply because for ten years I’ve been, “in my 20’s.” So now when I have to acknowledge my age, I think it’ll hit me from time-to-time. With that said, I have not had a better birthday weekend ever! This was one for the books.

On Friday, I wore one of my fav vintage dresses and changed up my accessories. Funny thing is I realized I had worn this last year almost exactly to the day. Consistent!

Breakfast was Garden Lites blueberry zucchini muffin with a GF Ancient Grains waffle warmed over spinach and topped with mashed avocado + white beans and dried spices. Delicious!

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After work, I went by Old Mill Bread Company to pick up my cherry pie for our birthday party on Saturday, and I grabbed one of their energy bars. I ate maybe a third and that calmed my hunger.

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My awesome manager gave me a nail gift certificate, so I got a birthday mani/pedi. Love this salon!

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Kaci also got her nails done, but I had to get started early. We hung out while my nails dried, and she surprised me with not one but two gifts when she said we weren’t exchanging gifts! So I’ll have to get her back when she least expects it [hey, Kase! 😉 ].

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For the first time in a while, I knew exactly what color I wanted before I arrived, and I love how they turned out! The bracelet was one of Kaci’s gifts, and I adore it!

She also got me this purrfect hand towel!

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Matt and I viewed a home with our realtor on Friday evening, and while it is an adorably farm house (!), the people who renovated it cut corners. It was not clean, and there were a number of things that would need to be addressed, especially the roof. I had new three-dimensional shingles, but the underneath side was concerning. Once those things are addressed, I’m sure it’ll be an awesome home, but it’s not quite right for us. The pergola below comes off from the master bedroom. Really nice!

It still has a barn on the property and an old well house. No joke, every house we’ve looked at has had some sort of Painting With a Twist style painting there. Lol! I also loved this neighbor’s truck.

For dinner, we had Italian chicken sausages and risotto heated and enjoyed with a salad.

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Saturday

For breakfast, I made Ancient Grains oatmeal with milk, spices, dried figs, brown sugar, pb, and sunflower seeds. I accidentally made it a tad thick, but it was satisfying.

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Sweet Jax!

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Snuggly Ray.

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My dad surprised me with an ah-mazing Amazon gift card for my birthday, and I ordered a ton of awesome items, including this Modern Table Meals variety pack!

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Jackson loved the box. Ha!

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After getting ready for our par-tay, Matt and I had snack plates of sweet potato chips, carrots, hummus, and Babybel.

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We swung by Kroger for a few things, and I grabbed this water. I had forgotten how much I love Hint flavored waters!

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Kaci is a rock star and planned our 30th birthday gathering at The Hive, an incredible/adorable/precious event space. One of Kaci and Drew’s wedding photographers, Sara, even came and took so many photos for us!!! I’m beyond grateful. She took this of our “30” balloons, gold for Kaci and silver for me. I cannot wait to share some photos soon! Kendale Ball of Simpl Food Arts catered for us, and the food was phenomenal.

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Even though we had asked for our friends and family’s presence over presents, they surprised us with the most thoughtful gifts!

Matt also surprised me with this gorgeous champagne gold photo album that will hold 600 4×6 photos!!

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After getting freshened up, Matt and I went to Elkmont Exchange for dinner. Unfortunately, they’re in the middle of a menu transition they said, so they had few options. We made our way over to Balter Beerworks and dined on their patio.

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Matt was a sweetie and got my sunscreen from the car. We latered it on to sit through dinner.

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I ordered their grilled salmon salad with freshly baked fluffy pita. This hit the spot!

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Matt ordered one of their burgers on a GF bun with coleslaw and broccoli salad. I got a bite, and holy moly it was tasty.

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Looking back across the street as we walked to our car. Love the patio string lights!

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The sunsphere against a pretty evening sky.

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We met Kaci, Drew, and Axl at the food truck park where they ate dinner. After plenty of laughs and conversation, we decided to make our way home to shower and get to bed.

Sunday

Matt and I were up and at ’em to enjoy my free birthday brunch at First Watch! We also had a $2 coupon off his entrée, score!

We both ordered The Traditional, mine with over easy eggs, their amazing toast, mixed greens, and chicken sausage while Matt got a half order of each bacon and pork sausage, Udi’s GF bread, and potatoes. I traded some greens for potatoes, and man oh man did this hit the spot!

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Modeling my ‘June’ t-shirt! “June Born // I have a smart mouth but I’m faithful and honest. I am sarcastic but I’m loving and supportive. I’m stubborn as can be but I’m trustworthy. I’m a little bit of chaos and a whole lot of fun.” 😉

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They gave out mini bags of ground coffee for Father’s Day, so Matt scored big. Hehe

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We loved this! It was Paw-ther’s Day for Matt, and he’s the best cat dad!

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We gathered up some food and our swimsuits and made our way to the lake house. We got to Facetime with my dad while on our way, and it was so fun! I love having this technology, so despite the miles between us, we got to see each other. It was *such* a gorgeous day! Kaci and Drew sanded and repainted this patio furniture, brought it back to life. I’m grateful!

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Once Kaci, Drew, and Axl; Neal, Sara, and the kids; Drew’s parents, David and Susan; Neals’ parents., we broke out the snacks. Simple Mills tomato basil crackers with jalapeno pimiento cheese dip from our party and Sabra dip.

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My sweet man who made my weekend such a blast!

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I’m so glad I get to celebrate my birthdays with a badass, amazing twinklet! Rockin’ our Cupshe swimsuits, and I’m now obsessed with mine. My friend gave it to me, and she is just the sweetest!

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Our signature pose. 😉

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Drew was being goofy and snapped these hilarious “artistic” shots. We were hardcore cheesin’!

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Matt snapped these of me on the deck. 🙂

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Is she not gorgeous! Loved her suit and entire look from her topknot to her purple painted toes. 😉

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Cuties!

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Just bobbin’ along.

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Kaci or “Quiche”  with Piper. That’s the kids’ name for her, and it’s adorable! She’s Aunt Quiche, and they love her so much.

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Sara made the best strawberry mint lemonade! Summer staple from now on.

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Our epic dinner! Baked beans, sauerkraut, corn cucumber salad that was so good, pasta salad with kalamata olives that Sara made (the best!), pickle spear, caprese and grilled vegetable skewers from our party, and cilantro lime cole slaw that I made.

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Matt had a salmon burger and a grilled brat of some kind.

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Drew’s dad made cobbler in the cast iron skillet on the grill. I’m going to let that sink in for a sec. It. Was. Killer. We had very melty vanilla bean ice cream over top, and it was heaven-in-a-bowl!

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Group shot! ❤ Love my family!

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Matt and I saw this sign and had to snap a photo. Of course we would always vote for Mason!

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Monday

This morning I made us fluffy Ancient Grains oatmeal with fresh red pear, cardamom, ginger, cloves, vanilla, brown sugar, and then pistachios for me.

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First Watch coffee in my new mug thanks to Rachele, one of the nicest girls and one I’m thankful to have as a friend!

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When I got to work, one of my coworkers, Lindsey had surprised me with this! You’ll never meet another person with as kind of a soul and genuinely good to the core. Love her!

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I feel so very loved, appreciated, and grateful. This weekend was epic in every way, and I’m thankful for all of the memories that were made!

 

 

 

 

The Need for Speed, Birthday Celebrations, Exploring Savannah

I want to begin by saying this was the very best race weekend and birthday celebration for Matt ever, and I’m beyond grateful!! I came back feeling more calm than I have in a long time, and I can’t say enough how happy it made me to see Matt enjoy himself so much. We went to the same track, Roebling Road Raceway, where he got his racing license February 2016.

I gave him his card on Thursday even though his birthday was on Sunday. I wanted to give it to him before our weekend got under way. Is it not adorable?

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Friday

For breakfast, I had our last muffin with cottage cheese and fresh raspberries. Then I enjoyed an over easy egg over wilted greens with everything bagel seasoning.

Had to get our selfie out front of our place before we hit the road!

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Matt had forgot to renew his driver’s license, and it was set to expire on his birthday. When he tried to do so online, it wouldn’t process. He went down to the department, and they told him the system was down across the area. Cue a mini panic given he’d be driving the truck and trailer on Sunday and Monday. Thankfully, they called us before we had left town, and he was able to get it renewed. Phew!

While he in their office, I snacked on this yogurt. I loved it!

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I packed us each a Hilary’s vegetable burger with avocado, greens, and Caesar dressing on GF bread for Matt and open-faced for me. The last of our red pepper on the side. I fed him while he drove then enjoyed mine.

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The last truffle plus an apple for dessert.

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This flavor is so good! I had never seen it before. Snag it if you see it in the store!

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I wanted some coffee, so we stopped at a Dunkin Donuts where I ordered a half caf iced latte. I don’t know what I was doing with my arm. Lol! But I thought my shirt was rather appropriate. 😉

After Matt went through tech inspection and together we got our air mattress inflated and made, tent put up over the car, and everything organized, we walked the track. It is just over two miles, and boy did it feel good after a seven hour drive! It was a gorgeous evening too.

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We took photos at this tree in July 2016, so we figured we’d try to recreate them.

Dinner was so simple and tasty! I brought our baked cabbage, steamed green beans, wild rice/cauliflower pearls/brown rice, and Target cooked chicken with the last of our Asian peanut butter sauce to heat in the microwave.

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Dessert for me was Fage plain Greek yogurt with half a banana, half a Nature’s Valley peanut butter filled bar, and sunflower seeds.

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Saturday

We slept well except for our faces freezing during the night. The temperature dropped to the 50’s, and while we were warm under our covers, our faces were definitely not. But breakfast was so good! I finally found these Ore Ida scramble cups to try. We had toast with fruit spread and split a grapefruit on the side. I added cinnamon to my grapefruit.

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Lovely morning selfie for ya.

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All ready for his qualifying session!

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I just love this sport and my husband. Sorry to gush, but I can’t help myself.

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After showering. I felt like a new lady.

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I had a mid-morning snack of Fage, the second half of my Nature’s Valley bar, sunflower seeds, and raspberries. We had these cups from the hotel stay that Matt and his Dad had when they first picked up the trailer in 2016. Love the mustache.

The pine trees produced such huge pinecones at the track!

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Lunch was spinach, a packet of Bumble Bee jalapeno tuna, carrot, and blue corn chips enjoyed in the sunshine.

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I repainted my nails while we were waiting for his race.

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After he completed his race (and did very well!), I enjoyed a banana and half a packet of Justin’s almond butter.

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They always hold a dinner social on Saturday night, but we haven’t eaten due to Matt having Celiac. However, Matt just gave the roll to a friend and was careful to eat what hadn’t been contaminated. While I was at first nervous, I realized he does a great job of being careful. This was so dang delicious! I ate a little beyond my fullness but left the drumstick and roll.

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We again walked the track and enjoyed so. many. laughs. together!

I noshed on half the roll with Fage, honey, and cinnamon. Hit the spot.

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Sunday

Up and at ’em on Sunday! Despite it being chilly, I enjoyed instant oats mixed with Fage, spices, honey, raspberries, and we split a packet of Justin’s vanilla almond butter.

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Birthday photo together! He turned 35 but hardly looks 30 to me. Love my handsome man.

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He ran his qualifying session and then was scheduled to be the first group on the track after lunch hour. We had some of the rice mixture with sweet and spicy tuna and a carrot. I had the last of the crunchy toppings from a salad kit in a bag while Matt had sunflower seeds.

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Matt took second place in his class and fourth overall for his race!!! I was such a proud wife!

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His awesome plaque.

I snacked on a Larabar while we broke down our setup and got packed to leave the track for a night in downtown Savannah, GA.

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Funny story: I confirmed with our hotel that we could park our truck and 26′ long enclosed trailer in their lot. Turns out, they only do valet parking and do not have said lot. They told us to call the visitor center for a parking pass. Welp, they quit issuing them for overnight parking in January. They then directed us to the convention center across the river. We ended up having to park and leave it there before taking the free ferry back across to then walk about half a mile to the hotel…with our luggage. This was after first walking around the center trying to confirm if we could, indeed, leave our vehicle and trailer there. Everyone we spoke to was like, “yea, that’s normal.” We just felt so weird about it!

Ferry selfie. I was so proud of us both for not losing our tempers but instead, we made the most of it! We ended up thinking the ferry was a fun adventure

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Look how huge some of these ships were! I was amazed by the sheer size and power of them all.

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I thought this was a really pretty church as we were walking to the hotel.

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Matt politely explained our ordeal to the gentleman who checked us into our room, and he immediately, without hesitation, gave us each free breakfast vouchers for Monday! I was so appreciative.

After getting ready in record time, we sat out for dinner without a plan. This is so unlike me, but I’m really learning to wing it more. We settled on Belford’s, a steak and seafood restaurant. While the photo isn’t the best quality, I definitely treasure it.

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We got their Dixie Lemonade, alcoholic for him, virgin for me. I loved it! I tasted his and thought mine was better.

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He then got their mule, though, and I loved it. If I did choose to drink, whiskey would be my liquor of choice. Loved the addition of the berry skewer!

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We split their sautéed calamari appetizer, and man was it full of flavor! They weren’t over cooked or chewy either.

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I went with their shrimp and greens with tomatoes, bacon, cheese, and that grit cake that was so stinkin’ delicious! I was pleasantly full but wanted another. Haha.

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Matt chose one of their specials, halibut with greens, sun-dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, and lentils. It was phenomenal too!

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Our waitress was great and suggested we go to Lulu’s Chocolate Bar for dessert. I got black coffee, which was very lovely.

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Matt got one of their alcoholic hot coffee drinks, and it was so good too!

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They were SO sweet and surprised him with one of their white chocolate covered strawberries after I told them it was his birthday!

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Love!

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Matt enjoyed their chocolate flourless torte with raspberries, and it was decadent and perfect.

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I had to go with their peanut butter chocolate pie. Y’all, the crust, the peanut butter mousse filling. It was so divine! Unfortunately, I left my other half in the hotel mini fridge. Womp womp.

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As we were walking back to the hotel, we saw this sign. I would love to visit the café when it’s open!

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Monday

After a good night’s sleep and a hot shower, we made our way downstairs for breakfast. This was the weekend of selfies together. :*

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I started with scrambled eggs, dollop of cottage cheese, sprinkle of cheddar, taste of grits, and ate this smoked salmon caper cream cheese bagel open-faced. Their coffee was really good in my opinion! The staff were all really friendly too.

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I snagged a bite of Matt’s bacon too. So crispy and tasty.

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I then got oatmeal with brown sugar, cinnamon, raisins, walnuts, pineapple, and grapefruit. Loved this creation!

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Matt got a big grits, eggs, bacon, cheese bowl. The boy has an appetite!

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We got coffees to go, checked out of the hotel, and we made our way over to the ferry dock. Look at this enormous freight liner from China. Matt said to remember that anytime you receive a notification that something is on back order, it probably got held up on one of these ships. Craziness!

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They had a statue and sign discussing the slave history, and I loved these arrangements at the base.

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After dropping off our luggage at the truck, we stopped to take a few photos at this cool wall. I got Matt this t-shirt that he actually saw advertised on his Facebook page.

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I loved the shirt and thought it was really fun. That smile ❤

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We stopped inside the convention center to use the restroom and saw some pretty artwork on display.

Matt was so sweet and offered to take my photo with the palm trees. It was such a perfect day! The weather was lovely, not too hot or cold.

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Strike a pose!

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After getting back over to downtown, we set out to explore. I saw the Olde Pink House that I had discovered in my Google searches for restaurants.

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Check out these cakes on window display!

The City Market is a happening place, and on the corner is Belford’s where we dined at.

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We both got some free cookie samples at this fun store.

I then caught up with my good friend, Marilyn. Ha!

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McD’s is apparently bringing back Snoopy to their Happy Meals.

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Matt was really sweet and let me stop at The Coffee Fox to finally get my first kolache. Kylie has written about them, but I’d never been able to try one. I had half of this cream cheese and fruit nice and warm. So good!

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I also got an iced matcha latte that was perfect and refreshing.

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Matt and I chose to dine at Chive Sea Bar and Lounge for lunch.

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It was so fancy feeling and comfortable!

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SnapChat filters together as we waited on our noms.

We loved the atmosphere!

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Matt ordered a cocktail, and I enjoyed a sip.

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He chose one of their lunch specials of baked snapper risotto. ‘Twas fabulous.

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I enjoyed about half of their mango arugula salad with grapes, strawberries, avocado, and walnuts.

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Then it was time to get back to the truck and on the road.

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This is where we parked. See how it seemed strange? But it worked out well!

I decided to get myself a t-shirt souvenir that I wore home.

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We walked quite a lot every day of the trip! Matt’s app tallied up a lot, and he even spent time in the race car. Our little feet were movin’.

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I succeeded in feeding us this bowl for dinner, which kept perfectly in the cooler. The last of our rice mixture, vegetables, chicken, and avocado ranch dressing. I fed him bite by bite while he drove. Pretty impressive, if I do say so myself! I also served as dj. 😉

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I had my cookie samples from earlier for dessert.

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I saw this on a sign, and it cracked up!

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Once we were home, unpacked, laundry going, and babies fed, I enjoyed herbal tea with honey plus yogurt, pb, and cereal. Kaci took the absolute best care of the babies and our place while we were gone, and even cleaned their bathroom and ran our dishwasher. We are forever grateful!

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I love that it’s now a short week for us. I hope everyone has a fabulous day and week ahead!