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Weekend Life in Nashville | Travel Guide

Nashville, Tennessee

Famous songwriting capital of the world and home to some good old honky tonks! It was a no-brainer when we decided Nashville would be a great place to visit especially to ring in my big 3-0! We planned a 4 day weekend and off we went!

You guys should already know by now that when we travel we ALWAYS use Airbnb for our accommodations because it’s just the way to do it (be on the lookout for an Airbnb specific post soon). We ended up scoring an amazing house in such a hipster part of town and the decor was everything! Let’s just put it this way, if I ever moved to Nashville that would be THE house of my dreams.

Breakfast: Pancake Pantry

We flew in early and were able to settle right into our comfy home and hunt down some breakfast. I came prepared with a list of places that were specific to Tennesse that I just HAD to try. So first on my list was the Pancake Pantry. And guys… this place is notorious for having a line and when we arrived, that famous line awaited us. We only ended up waiting about an hour and maybe 10 minutes to get seated. It was no big deal because we ended up making friends with people in the line. Nashville folks are SO nice!! Oh and if you’re wondering if it was worth the wait? Absolutely, 100% yes.

Activities: Centennial Park

With full and happy bellies, we walked around Hillsboro Village some, which is where the Pancake Pantry is located but then quickly decided to visit the Parthenon. Yes… you read that right, as in Nashville has a fully replicated Parthenon like they do in Greece! The art nerd in me jumped for joy when we pulled up into Centennial Park and saw all these amazing statues and all these people picnicking and bike riding like it was no big deal! Talk about being green with envy, heck if I lived close to Centennial Park I’d be doing all of the above too! The park and the replicated Parthenon DID NOT disappoint.

Activities: John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge

Naturally, the park ignited us to do some more touristy activities so, we decided the next stop would be the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge. A lot of my friends said this bridge had beautiful views and made a great backdrop for pictures. But I was actually more excited to visit the bridge because it’s one of the longest pedestrian bridges in the world. When we arrived, I was NOT READY for the steep incline. But once we got to the top, my friends weren’t lying, the views were AMAZING.

We got to walk across the Cumberland River, view the “Batman”  building, overlook the Tennesse Titans stadium, I mean there was so much to take in. It was awesome. 

Activities: Johnny Cash Museum

By the time we got done enjoying the bridge and the views we were feeling HOT, from both the incline and the weather. We needed to find AC stat and right at the bottom of the bridge was the Johnny Cash Museum.  We decided to go and check it out and I’m so glad we did, it felt surreal to be in there. To read about his life and see the things that were once his. His story is beautiful and hard all at the same time and to be able to experience that will always be a treasured memory for me. I especially loved all of the photographs of Johnny and June. #swoon

Activities: Ryman Auditorium

After spending time at the museum, we decided to just stroll down Broadway to see what tickled our fancy. We had no idea that the Ryman Auditorium was just right down the road. I immediately said, “we need to go there now!” We purchased tickets and made it just in time for the last tour of the night. I’m not going to lie, I got pretty teary eyed being there and listening to the rich history of such an extraordinary place. It felt like I was standing in the middle of the heart and soul of Nashville.

Lunch: Puckett’s Grocery Restaurant

After the tour, we were all starving. I took out my list of places to try and I was so excited that Puckett’s Grocery was 2 blocks away. It’s a pretty busy place especially around lunch/dinner time so I’m not ashamed to tell you that I ran to get our names on the list and did I mention it was uphill!? Luck was on my side because we got seated almost immediately. Win! Ok, so hands down this is a MUST try. If you are ever in Nashville, go here. I promise you will love it.

And if you’re trying to figure out what to get, allow me to help you. The Piggy Mac is a yes, the BLT with Fried green tomatoes is a double yes and their skillet pecan cobbler, OH MY GOSH, triple yes. You can thank me later. Overall, day 1 in Nashville was super successful!

Breakfast: Biscuit Love

Before we even got up for the day we had already decided to make it an early morning so we could get first dibs in line at Biscuit Love. Why? Because this place is also notorious for having lines up to 3 hours long!  I’ve only ever waited that long for one place and that’s Franklin’s Barbecue in Austin. We arrived early enough that we only had to wait 20 minutes and it was legit! You place your order at the counter and then find a table and await the goodness. Their biscuits were fluffy and tasted like little miniature cakes! SO delicious. Also, it’s home to the famous NASHVILLE sign that you can find all over Instagram and Pinterest!

Activities: Grand Ole Opry

After our delicious breakfast, we decided to visit the Grand Ole Opry which is a good 15 minutes away from downtown. We purchased our tickets and took our spot in line for the tour. I was so blown away by the building and how friendly the staff was. We got to explore the dressing rooms and hang out backstage before they let us actually go up on stage and get our picture taken!

Activities: Madame Tussauds Nashville

The Grand Ole Opry was right across the Opry Mills mall and they had just opened up the Madame Tussauds Nashville inside. To celebrate its grand opening we scored some awesome tickets to go inside. I’m not the biggest fan of wax museums but our group was super excited so I decided to give it a go. I’m so glad we did because I am a huge country music fan and inside was the mecca of country music stars plus a multitude of genres and eras. If you can score coupons, I say go for it, lots of great photo ops!

Lunch: The Pharmacy Burger Parlor & Beer Garden

When lunch time finally hit, we were ready to get our grub on. We had a lot of friends recommend the Pharmacy Burger Parlor & Beer Garden so off we went. We didn’t know what to expect when we got there, we just knew that we had to get on the wait list. There’s an app that we were able to use to skip the long line, so by the time our lyft got there we had a table waiting for us! It was awesome. The place itself is super inviting and homey, and the outside beer garden is top notch. Now the best part hands down are the burgers. OH MY GOSH. I went with build your own, and it was heavenly! I just can’t say enough good things. Everyone at my table agreed it was one hell of a burger, one of the best we’ve ever had!

Dessert: Five Daughters Bakery & Jeni’s Splended Ice Cream

I don’t know about you guys, but I love me some dessert. It’s one of those small things in life that I am very grateful for. I asked the group what they all felt like, and there was a mixture of replies so we found a place that housed two of Nashville favorites, Five Daughters Bakery and Jeni’s Splended Ice cream down in East Nashville. Both get A’s in my book especially the vanilla flavored icecream at Jeni’s, SOOO good. Definitley worth all the hype.

Activities: Nashville Really Entertaining Tours

After our amazing lunch and dessert combo we headed home to rest. We had planned a Bar crawl with Nashville’s Really Entertaining Tours that evening and we knew we needed some rest before we took off for the night. I slept for like 3 solid hours and I’m so glad I did because the bar crawl was EPIC and I needed all the energy I could get!

We met with Ryan our host and guide and he took us to bars that I probably wouldn’t have thought to go into. My favorite was the George Jones Museum Rooftop bar, because the view… gorgeous. On the tour we made our way into a speakeasy jazz bar, karaoke bar and finally made it to the moonshine bar where we stayed the rest of the night. We had a blast with both Ryan and the guests themselves. They all sang happy birthday to me at the end of the night! It was the perfect way to ring in my big 3-0!

Breakfast: 417 Union St.

Sleeping in after my awesome birthday celebration was a must. There was no need to rush, so when we were finally ready, we made our way to 417 Union st. to get our breakfast on. Please do yourself a favor and next time you’re there order the chicken and waffles. YUM!! The biscuits and gravey are a close 2nd! It’s a cute little place with some mean drinks on the menu. You won’t be disappointed!

Activities: Home of the Stars Grayline tour

My siblings had purchased some celebrity home tour tickets for us so after breakfast we hopped on a bus at a local hotel near 407 Untion and sat back and enjoyed the 4 hour tour. We got to visit the homes of Taylor Swift, Reese Witherspoon, Dolly Parton, Hillary Scott, Martina McBride, and many more. We weren’t really able to stop in front of the homes so snapping pictures was a little hard to do. It was enjoyable but definitley a long tour. Bring snacks, although they do stop for a break, it’s better to have them on hand, and don’t sit in the very back, it’s hard to get AC back there. Just an fyi.

Lunch/Dinner: Food Crawl at Martin’s Barbecue, Desano Pizza Bakery & Party Fowl

Since the days were beginning to catch up, we were running out of time to try all the awesome places on my list to eat so we decided to embark on our own food crawl. The premise was that we’d visit each place, get a plate to share so we could try out a variety of places. Our first stop was Martin’s barbecue. Tennessee is famous for their dry rub barbecue and although it was good, I’m just a Texas barbecue with all my sauce kind of girl. The sides were great and I just love the way they style their pancake cornbreads!

Next stop was Desano Pizza Bakery and originally we ordered a small pizza but they accidentally read our order wrong and they gifted us a large! This pizza was awesome, we were all just supposed to have one slice but my husband and brother kept going for it. It was that good! They might have over done it because we spent the next hour trying to walk off our food down music row before we headed off to our final destination to Party Fowl.

Nashville is famous for their Hot Chicken and so many people gave us their recommendations. We finally settled on a smaller hole in the wall restaurant which brought us to Party Fowl! I’m so glad we did because it was the perfect introduction to Nashville Hot Chicken! Our waiter recommended we start out with mild and work our way up. Thank goodness we listened because even the mild was HOT. If you’re looking for Hot Chicken, go there, it’s busy but not long line busy. You’ll get seated, no problem.

Breakfast: Frothy Monkey | Activity: Shopping at Draper James & I believe in Nashville Mural

On our last day in Nashville, we decided to take it easy. It was an easy decision to grab breakfast close by to our Airbnb. Plus I wanted to finally hunt down the famous I believe in Nashville Mural. Our first stop was Frothy Monkey for a wholesome breakfast and can I just say that the coffee is fantastic. Right down the road is Reese Witherspoon’s Draper James store, which of course we had to stop in and check out. I scored the cutest Tennessee pin for my collection, and did you know they serve you FREE delicious sweet tea? Heavenly. The alley next to the shop houses the famous mural and let’s just say it’s everything it’s cracked out to be. I’m so glad I got a photo op there!

Activities: Country Music Hall of Fame

On our way to the airport, we finally made our last stop at the Country Music Hall of Fame. Being able to go through the years and experience the success of so many amazing artists was magical. They showcased many artists and their unique talents, for example, did you know that Brad Paisley likes to paint? The walls were filled with stunning artwork and I even got to play and mess around with their recording studio. It was so much fun, it was a great way to end the weekend.

Thank you, Nashville.

This trip is one for the books, we had a great time! I hope that if you’re planning a trip to Nashville, this guide helps you in some way. Nashville, you’re so wonderful and thank you for all the amazing memories, I believe in you!

 

 

 

 

Looking back: An homage to 2016 (PART 2)

The Last 6 Months

I don’t mean to sound biased, but I’m pretty sure the last 6 months were some of the most fun and exciting months I’ve ever had. I mean we’re talking travel lust, holiday celebrations, personal accomplishments and career highs! Let’s jump into what the last 6 months had in store for me!

July 2016

In July, I had the opportunity to visit Shreveport, Louisana with one of my besties to meet her sisters! I shared the ultimate 24 hours in Shreveport, LA but get this, with NO GAMBLING. We had the best time. The food, the company and the atmosphere were fantastic!

I also shared how I was celebrating my summer with the Birthday Party Project, and I showcased some fun projects I was working on, like my embroidery hoops. Not to mention 4th of July!!! So many fireworks, so much fun! Summer was officially in full swing! Did I mention it was also the month I tried Seafood for the very first time?! True Story. Dani Rae’s in Denton is awesome for Seafood!

August 2016

August arrived and it was the start of my senior year at TWU and although it came too soon, I shared some of my musts haves for the new semester.  And things got real on the blog. It was around the time I shared my keeping it real post and why adulting is pretty awesome.

I opened up the blog to my vulnerability and declared that this place would be about finding my niche, and only sharing things I love instead of trying to be someone I’m not. It was also the beginning of the infamous 30 before 30 list. Which full disclosure, has been a lot of fun but I’m fully aware that some may not be as realistic as I had originally thought. Just keeping it real.

August was also the month I incorporated the WEEKEND LIFE posts which are fun to share because it’s all about the behind the scenes, and memories in between.

September 2016

In September, the hubs and  I fully declared that we would be more adventurous and that we would start to explore more places locally. So it was the first time we visited Bishops Art in Dallas with our sweet little Ella. We hit up so many places, Joy Macarons being one of the top picks that day! SO DELICIOUS!

In September I also took a leap of faith and got an internship I had my heart set on. I shared all about taking chances and going after what you want!

In September, things got real with school, and I shared some of the fun ways I destress with friends and spend my mornings up in Denton, TX. Like how breakfast at Cartwright’s Ranch House and browsing books at the Recycled Book Store is a must!

I also got to showcase one of my most prized embroidery pieces in September, my Friday Kahlo in the red dress. I’ve received so many messages about this piece, and although it’s still not for sale, I do plan on making some more in the future that will be. But thank you for all your love and support with my art!

By the end of September Weekend Life was taking off, and people started to share with me, the fun things they did over the weekends. Some of my favorite Weekend life photos of mine was one of the western days in Lewisville because corny dogs are my fave, and obviously pizza from Pizza Snob off of the Square in Denton, because yum! Seriously, go there now!

October 2016

October, oh October, how we love you and hate you (in a totally non violent way) because October, you are by far the busiest month for us EVERY SINGLE YEAR!

Ok, I’m pretty sure that yesterday I claimed that our mini road trip in May was one of my favorites, but you guys, October was the mecca of trips! It was hands down the very best for both my husband and I. In October we got to spend a lot of alone time together to celebrate his 30th birthday and it was so amazing to be able to shower him with gifts! First Gift? A weekend in Austin to see Chris Stapleton at the ACLS! Check out our ACL recap, because it was phenonmenal!

October is also pumpkin patch season because FALL y’all! So off to Halls Pumpkin Patch we went, in DFW, it’s the BEST pumpkin patch ever.  We really wanted to have fun with our little one before we ventured out on our next trip!

Now comes my ultimate favorite part, Denver, Colorado! I surprised my husband during his actual birthday weekend with a trip to Denver and to vist the RMNP! Check out the recaps, Day 1, Day 2, Day 3 & 4!

When I mentioned that October was busy, it truly was. Once we got back from the ultimate Bday weekend, it was time to celebrate our little one’s birthday! What better way than with a Halloween Spookatcular Bash?!

Ella was obviously a ghostbuster because she can watch that movie on repeat with me, it’s the best (Kate and Melissa for life!). Girls rule and she knows it! It was a great way to wrap up the ever busy month! What a blast!

November 2016

November was one of the most inspirational months for me! Career wise it was uplifting because my team and I were part of the TAEA conference in Dallas this past year. It’s a huge conference for our field and to be invited to present was an honor in itself. Make sure to check out the TAEA recap because this experience is one I will always cherish. Plus making memories with my team is super important to me. They truly lift me up.

Of course, November was also the month of the Election and I shared some personal feelings in together we stand. I really focused on being grateful for my freedom and for love. Especially getting the chance to love all those so precious to me in my life. It was a great way to reflect as we headed towards celebrating Thanksgiving.

Which by the way, this year was my first time to host it for my family! Which meant, mom didn’t have to cook and she loved it! The pressure was on, but we had the best time and I shared the details in our Thanksgiving re-cap.

December 2016

December started off with a bang! After all, it was Holiday season! Christmas was coming and I wanted to really embrace the Holidays. So I made a vow to blog for 25 days. It started off pretty well! I shared my art ed classroom gift exchange and I talked about how to host an epic exchange if you ever wanted too!

We took Ella to go see the Nutcracker which was also my first time! And of course, we ended up exploring Ft. Worth a little bit! Check out the re-cap! We hit up Ol’South Pancake house and Sundance Square!

I also shared my famous and super secret (well not anymore) lemon bar recipe, our favorite Christmas movies to binge watch and then… things got quiet around here.

It was at the end of the Fall semester and I had a small dark cloud hang over me . I was stressed with finals and trying to make more time for my family that I decided to just be #perfectlyinthismoment with them. So I took a little, but much needed break from technology, and just lived. That’s not to say I didn’t miss my blog or my social media outlets, but I just really wanted to be in those moments, fully present. It was honestly the perfect way to end 2016. So here’s the final recap of what I did those last few weeks before we hit 2017!

We took Ella to her first Stars game and she loved it! She was cheering them on like a little pro! It was awesome that we won too!

We also spent an entire night cruising around Dallas doing the ultimate light tour and Christmas tree perusing. We stopped by the Farmers Branch Light Tour, and then we visited Bishops Arts for their famous Merry Christmas You Filthy Animals Sign at Enos and then we got to see the Christmas tree at Kylde warren park!

If that wasn’t enough adventure, we also took Ella ice skating for the first time! Thank GOD for amazing friends, because our dear friend Alicia took her out onto the ice because heaven knows I wasn’t going out there! Yes, I’m too scared! HAHA!

During the holidays we also got to spend a lot of time with my nieces and we got to visit Six Flags over Texas for their annual Holiday in the Park. So beautiful, not to mention all the adrenaline rush from the rides!

Christmas was celebrated with loved ones. Memories were made and shared and love was everywhere. I had the BEST holiday season that I’ve ever had in my life. Maybe it comes with getting older and truly cherishing the things that are important in life. It’s about collecting moments rather than things.

I hope you all had an amazing 2016 and I know with all my heart you will have an amazing 2017! Thank you for being a part of my journey! I can’t wait to see how the rest of the story unfolds!

Hugs! Until next time.

 

 

 

 

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