Ya'll I think Vermont is one of the most beautiful places I've ever been to.
Our family had the opportunity to stay at the Holiday Inn Mount Ascutney Resort. It may have been a hop, skip, and a jump from any civilization, but it was well worth it.
One of the number one things I knew I wanted to do when we visited Vermont was checking out the Ben & Jerry's Factory. I have loved this company for so long and all the work that they do to help the world and I was pumped to see how their delicious ice cream is made.
Bless you Ben & Jerrys for having dairy free flavors.
While we were in Waterbury, we stopped by Allium, an adorable little restaurant in the downtown area. The food was sooo delicious (a photo of Kayla's avocado toast because it was a lot prettier than my poutine).
The next day we visited the Quechee Gorge, a beautiful little piece of this earth. Mom, Kayla, and I went down on one of the little trails to get a better look at it.
One thing Vermont is well known for is it's abundance of covered bridges, which my mom was determined to see as many as possible.
One of our last stops on our trip was to Sugarbush Farm, where we got to pet and feed adorable goats, bunnies, and baby cows. Vermont is also well known for their maple syrup and cheese, and this place offered a cheese and maple syrup tasting. Literally the best maple syrup I've ever had in my life.
My family decided to take a little bit of a different summer vacation this year. Rather than going to Florida or another beach, we headed up north for a Vermont mountain getaway. On the way up, we stopped for a quick visit in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Getting comfy in the hotel room. (featuring one of the best games of all time, Quiddler).
After consulting the kind lady at the front desk, she recommended Red Rose Pizzeria as a good dinner spot. Apparently it was one of the only dinner spots in town because this place was packed to the gills. Super yummy pizza and Italian food.
The next morning was all about getting Suessical aka visiting the Dr. Suess Museum. My mom is an elementary school librarian so you could say she's a little obsessed with the guy.
This place was definitely made for kids to play around in. Good thing my sister and I are kids at heart.
Tickets to the Suess Museum also included entry to a few other museums in the area! We checked out the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum and the Michele and Donald D'Amour Museum of Fine Arts as well.
After grabbing lunch at another local spot, it was time to continue our journey to Vermont!
This year for our birthdays, one of my best friends Maria and I wanted to celebrate with an experience rather than material goods. So we packed our bags and headed to Nashville, TN for Memorial Day weekend.
This definitely was one of the most fun weekends I've had in a while. I don't think I've ever laughed so much in my life. Here are a few highlights of our favorite things we did in the city.
Taking pics by one of the I Believe in Nashville murals at Marathon Music Works.
The Nashville What Lifts You Wings by Kelsey Montague Art.
Exploring the Gulch neighborhood area
Went to see the Parthenon, Nashville's little slice of Ancient Greece.
Maria and I had both been wanting another tattoo for a while now and decided that our trip would be the perfect time to get them (no photo proof yet of Maria's tat).
Flash City Tattoo was the bomb.com. Rawn was an incredible artist and dude and really wanted to make sure we loved the tats we were getting.
My tattoo: XXI:XXV = Proverbs 31:25 "Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come."
Maria's tattoo: "Speak Friend and Enter", a quote from Lord of the Rings. Plus some cute little Harry Potter stars on either side.
Saturday evening, Maria and I forced ourselves not to be grandmas and got ready for an evening out on the town.
First, we stopped at the super cool Up Rooftop Lounge that had incredible views of the Nashville Downtown skyline.
Next was Party Fowl, for one of the city's specialities, Nashville Hot Chicken.
After a lot of encouragement (I'm not used to staying up this late lol), the last stop of the night was the Florida Georgia Line House, right in the heart of Broadway. So much cool live music and awesome people (we actually ran into so fellow JMU Dukes!).
It's safe to say we were pretty exhausted after everything we did on Saturday, so Sunday was definitely a lot more relaxed.
We started off the day by going to the Nashville Farmers Market and Market House. So many fresh, and tasty treats as well as cuisine from all around the world!
We completely forgot to take photos, but we also looked around the Hillsboro Village and checked out some local boutiques and shops.
Some of our favorites:
Native + Nomad
Hey Rooster General Store
Maria and I also stopped by the Grand Ole Opry but only stayed for about 10 minutes after realizing it cost over $40 to get in and being overwhelmed by crazy tourists.
That night we stopped by Pinewood Social, a restaurant with a bowling alley, bocce ball, a swimming pool and so many other fun, aesthetically-pleasing features. So fun just hanging out and feeling like a 20-something Nashville native.
Maria and I ended the trip by walking the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge to see this incredible view of the city. A great way to end the trip and ring in our 23rd year.
This weekend was so wonderful. These women have been by my side and been a constant support system for me these past four years. In the past few weeks, I have been sad and frustrated thing towards the transition ahead of me from being a full time student to a full time adult. I have never not known whats next and what my future holds. I am filled with excitement for my future, but I am also terrified of not having a concrete plan. These wonderful sisters reminded me of how loved I am and how much good is coming in my future. I am forever grateful for them and their friendship.
It was a beautiful day up at Storybook. I'm grateful to have cool friends who are always down to let me take pics of them. Here are some of my favs!
One more thing has been checked off the senior bucket list... seeing Reddish Knob at sunrise. On the drive up we were getting nervous because the valley was covered in a thick fog. But once we reached a certain altitude, the fog broke to reveal a beautiful sight: The mountains in eager anticipation for the glorious light about to come.
I wouldn't call myself an early riser but this is something so special about waking up with the world. The stillness as the sun reveals itself and floods the world with warmth. There's nothing like it.
This semester is all about making memories with dear friends. Here's another one in the books.
Going to Canada has always been on my bucket list. The incredible landscapes, the friendly people, and specifically Niagara Falls. Its a place I have seen pictures of hundreds of times and just the thought of seeing that amount of water rushing off a cliff has always excited me. This winter break was one of the last chances I had to do a spontaneous trip with good friends. So we hopped in Maria's station wagon and went!
After a series of slightly unfortunate events I created the motto for our short trip: Not what if, what's next. Instead of wondering what certain outcomes would have been if we had done things differently, we had to refocus ourselves on whatever the next adventure held.
The cutest little air b&b their ever was.
We also got the chance to explore the butterfly conservatory
The cat. The myth. The legend. Chicken (the cat at the air b&b)
the one group picture we took the whole time was this selfie