Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Vacation Recap Pt I


We are back home from vacation and I'm already planning out the next one!  I told Simon that I want to start taking quarterly vacations, so we'll see how that pans out.  In the meantime I wanted to share with you all some of the sights that were seen on our vacation to North Redington Beach, Florida.  We've never been to this beach, but our travel agent (more on that later!) was able to find a great hotel at a great price.  We were situated between Clearwater Beach and St. Petersburg, 30 minutes in both directions.  This area of Florida was pretty quiet which is perfect for us.  There were a lot of homes being built on the beach and they were GORGEOUS.  No photos of them, however, so just image huge homes with 3 and 4 car garages.

To start, we left on a Monday morning.  Atlanta traffic isn't too friendly, so although check-in was 4pm and it was an estimated 7.5 hour drive, we left at 6:30am in order to beat rush hour(s) and decided to make the road trip a mini trip in itself.  We stopped for breakfast once we were well outside of the city (in Macon, GA to be exact) and relaxed for about an hour.  We got back on the road, crossed the Florida line a few hours later...

...stopped for lunch at a gorgeous rest stop (that's an oxymoron right?) and ate at one of the pavilions.  The rest stop was so gorgeous I had to snap photos.  One thing that wasn't so cool though was the "Warning Beware of Poisonous Snakes" sign.  Huh??

Maybe they were being funny (or not), but there was an attraction there called the Snake Wall which basically is a bridge that you walk up and the end is an overlook of one of the state parks as well as the interstate.

We even saw caterpillars!  I've never seen this type in person and boy do those suckers move fast.

After about an hour here we finished our trip (even got a little turned around towards the last 15 minutes of the drive thanks to road construction/changes and Google maps not having current info) and arrived at our hotel, the Doubletree.  Here are a few photos of the beach in no particular order.

There were hula dancers on Friday night at the cookout that the hotel had, and on Saturday morning I was surprised to see a beach wedding!

I will be back with part two of our vacation soon!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Road Trip Essentials

Hello there friends!  It's been a while, but all thanks to Katrina from Chic Little House for motivating me over the weekend to get back to blogging!  As you may know, the Haven Conference was this past weekend in Atlanta.  Though I didn't attend, I had the pleasure of finally meeting Katrina after being blog buddies for a few years.  It was one of the best days ever and I'm so happy to have met such a kind, wonderful, genuine person.  Now I have someone to visit on the west coast :)

With that being said, I have some exciting home projects lined up that I'm looking forward to starting (and sharing), but first Simon and I will be going on vacation soon and it will be a road trip.  I wanted to share a few of my road trip essentials...i.e. things that keep me sane in a car for hours at a time.  I'm not a fan of being in a car for more than four hours, so I get a little stir crazy after then.  I'm usually a passenger for the majority of the trip because Simon enjoys driving.  To keep myself calm and entertained, here are a few things that I bring with me-

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1. My phone (obviously)- Yes it's great for talking and texting on the road (and playing Candy Crush), but I have loads of music and can also listen to Pandora or Sirius XM Satellite Radio for a wide variety of music options.

2. Phone Charger- Don't want the battery to die two hours into the trip.

3. Motion sickness pills-  I get an awful headache when I try to read, write or draw in a moving vehicle.  In order for me to do any of these, I take these pills.  They tend to make me drowsy which is fine and leads me to...

4.  My pillow from home- An absolute necessity.  Trying to sleep comfortably in a car in an upright position is nearly impossible without a pillow to take the strain off of my neck.  Also, if for some reason the hotel pillows aren't as comfortable, I have my own pillow to fall back on.

5.  Reading materials- A magazine or book is great after waking up from my motion sickness pill nap.  Simon and I purchased a book of questions a few years back, so I read the questions and we answer them.  It's interesting what you learn about your partner that you may not have known from these kinds of books.

6.  Snacks and drinks- A HUGE must.  We usually pack our cooler with water bottles (of course a few sparkling ones are thrown in there), a flavored beverage whether it's Jones Soda or San Pellegrino Limonata, sandwich ingredients (usually some kind of deli meat from the deli counter and a gourmet cheese to make the sandwiches a little more special) and fruit.  As far as dry snacks, we usually pack Kettle chips, nuts, and some kind of healthier option of a dessert.

7.  Comfortable clothes-  Since we're in the car for hours at a time, I always wear comfortable clothing.  This usually consists of loose shorts, a tank top, flip flops and sunnies.  I still want to look cute since I like taking pictures along the way...

8.  My camera- It's a way to flex my creative muscles in a moving vehicle (a design challenge for sure!).  I also love state welcome signs and try to get a picture of them each time we enter a new state.  I take pictures with my cell phone as well so that I can post to my Instagram for you fine people :)

9.  Gum-  After those naps I want to freshen my breath if we're not near a rest stop.

10.  CDs-  Even though I have music on my phone, there are still a few CDs that we like to listen to along the way (Radiohead, Thom Yorke and Outkast to name a few).

So there it is, the things that keep me sane on a road trip.  What about you all?  What are your road trip necessities?  I would love some more ideas!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Last of Winter

Yesterday the high was 80...the highest temperature this year.  Before these temperatures decide to stay around for a bit I thought I'd share a few photos from "Snowpocalypse 2014" and "Snowmageddon 2014" as Atlantans called it.

You all may have heard about the snow that Georgia received this year.  SNL even did a skit about it.  The first time it happened was when all of Metro Atlanta ended up on the road at the same exact time (1:00 pm) because all businesses and schools closed at the same exact time.  My normal hour long commute home turned into six hours.  I could have driven to Orlando in that amount of time!  The problem in GA is that we aren't used to getting this type of weather, and our snow usually turns into ice...black ice.  Ice is not cute nor is it fun to drive on especially when we aren't used to driving on it.  Many people were stranded on the interstate for 24+ hours or just had to abandon their cars on the side of the road because they either ran out of gas, could not pass certain roads due to the ice or could not drive ahead because 18-wheelers spun out and blocked up the interstate.  A woman even gave birth in her car and a lot of kids had to stay the night at their schools.  Simon didn't come home that night because he would have been sitting in the traffic if he attempted it.  Luckily his brother lives around the corner from where he works so he was able to crash there.

At any rate, a week and a half later after this fiasco we got even more snow with accompanied sleet.  This time people stayed home.  It was like...if school is closing then so are we!  The city was shut down for two days.  During the time off and because I'm a picture fiend, I shot some photos of the snow.  Looking back at the images it's hard to believe that this was only three weeks ago.  I'm not a fan of winter, but I love a good photo op.

Images from the first snowfall-

Can't even tell where the house ends and the sky begins.

Simon had to salt the driveway.

The neighborhood cat got in on the action.


Images from the second snowfall 1.5 weeks later-

Right outside of our front door.

The snow was deep!  About 5-6 inches.
There was ice on top of snow on top of ice.  That's mostly ice on the street behind Simon.

We made a snowman :)
He got a little chilly so Simon lit the fire pit for him.

Enough of this cold business, bring on the spring!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Valentine's Day is almost here!

Hey there!  Just popping in to let you know that I have added Valentine's Day cards to my shop, Color Hug (www.ColorHug.com).  Check them out if you are in to Love day


Monday, January 13, 2014

Guest Room Before and After


Wow...I haven't posted about a home decor update in a while.  I mentioned in this post that I needed to turn my guest room into a real guest room for Simon's parents for Christmas instead of the storage room.  I pulled it off and am happy with where it is as of now.

This is how the "guest room" looked before:

And this is after:

Enjoy your week!