Business Trip with my Sidekick

Hey guys!!!  It’s Fridayyyy!  The beginning of a nice long weekend (hopefully) for us!  We are relaxing at the lake with our friends and soaking up the warm weather and sunshine.  We always look forward to our lake trips with our friends every summer and this summer we only get this one trip with our friends.  It was a crazy summer and with my hospital stay, we didn’t plan out our summer like usual because we just didn’t know how long I would end up being in there.  It ended up being a LOT longer than expected so it made sense to hold off on our planning. 

But here we are and I don’t want to spend another moment inside so this will be a quick recap so I can go soak up this beautiful day with my hubby and our friends!

I told yall yesterday that I had a quick business trip on Monday to East Tennessee and since I was driving, I brought my momma along for the ride to keep me company. 🙂

We arrived Monday evening and went straight to the store Soft Surroundings.

We don’t have one in Nashville, but my mom gets the catalog and wanted to try a couple things on.  She ended up ordering a couple dresses and a blouse so it was a win!  After shopping we went to dinner at Water into Wine.

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We had some wine to start because what’s a girls night without wine, right? 😉

Then  we shared some stuffed mushrooms (yum!) and a couple salads which were both really good!

We hit the hay after dinner then were up bright and early as I had to be all over town Tuesday morning.  My momma was my driver, which was so nice. We got Starbucks for breakfast… I noticed the pumpkin spice latte is out earlier than ever this year?! crazy!  We hit up Panera for lunch and both got the black bean soup and I got a salad and my momma got a sandwich! I can’t wait for their fall squash soup to be out!  That reminds me that I need to make some butternut squash soup to have at home.  It is my favorite once the fall weather hits!

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My mom wanted you guys to see a picture of her flipflop cookie she got from Panera. Isn’t she so cute?

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After all my work was finished we headed back to Nashville!  A short, but very productive work trip!  I’m off to go enjoy the sunshine!! I hope you all have a nice long weekend too!!

Question:

  1. Do you travel for work?
  2. Any fun plans for the Labor Day weekend?
  3. Favorite type of soup?

Weekend Recap 8.26.18 Full of Date Nights and Music… Better Late Than Never

Hey friends!!  It’s been a crazy couple days around here and I am just now organizing my pictures from last weekend.  We had such a fun (maybe a little too much) weekend and went straight into the week with both my husband and I going away on business trips on Monday. 

Yesterday was actually our Friday and we left after work yesterday for the lake!  We are having a long Labor Day weekend at the lake with a few of our friends and I couldn’t be more excited for some down time.  On Tuesday when I got home from my work trip, I slept for 4 hours, got up for an hour and went right back to bed for 8 more hours.  I was exhausted!

So let’s get right to it before another weekend gets away from me!  My husband and I didn’t have any set plans for Friday night, but we knew Keith Urban was playing at Bridgestone so we were keeping an eye on tickets all day long and finally found some in the lower bowl for a great deal so decided to go!

I’ve been really into watching hair tutorials on youtube lately and trying to recreate them.  This was one of them… not quite as successful as the video I copied, but I’m getting better.

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Jon and I went to Amerigos for a quick dinner before the concert.

A date night with this guy is always a good night in my book!

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My husband had some kind of crab bisque and a salad and I got my favorite salad (with goat cheese!!!) and grilled salmon.  I know you guys, my food choices are just so exciting and unpredictable. 😉

Kelsea Ballarini opened for Keith Urban and she was fantastic.  Keith was really good too!  He brought up his wife, Nicole Kidman, on stage and then Reese Witherspoon got up there too.  Did you guys see them act together in Big Little Lies?  I read the book and am usually disappointed with a series or movie that was a book first, but I really liked the show and thought it was really well done.  Keith Urban brought out a couple more guests, one being Carrie Underwood.  Unfortunately us old people over here were too tired and left early and missed her, but hey, we found an uber quickly and got out of the madness that is downtown Nashville these days. 

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Saturday morning we got up bright and early for a run to Costco and the grocery store to stock up for our lake trip this week.  You may have seen my snapchat stories from Costco, but if not, I will fill you in.  There is a reason I grocery shop alone. I made my husband push the cart while I loaded it up and every time I turned around he was nowhere to be seen.

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He was either off getting samples or shopping for things not on our list!  We literally ended up with twice as much stuff as I had planned to get. 

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Then he got a hotdog.  I am never taking him shopping with me again. :I am the type of girl who makes a list and sticks to it, but not when my husband is in tow.  He’s pretty cute though, so I’ll forgive him this time. 🙂

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Saturday evening we had dinner reservations at Stoney River before the Taylor Swift concert.

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I had the ahi tuna and my husband had steak medallions and we both loved our meals. 

My forever date. 🙂

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You guys, I have been to a lot of concerts in my life and this was by far my favorite one yet!  Taylor was freaking awesome.  So entertaining, sweet, and just such an amazing performer. She was flying across the crowd in a gold cage, interacting with the audience, and did quite a few acoustic songs, which are my favorite.  

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She even had surprise guests Faith Hill and Tim McGraw join her for her song “Tim McGraw.”  It was so so so awesome.

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We had a blast and stayed until the very end.  The Ubers were few and far between by the time we left so we just started walking away from downtown to hopefully get lucky and get an uber.  Well… we were not so lucky and ended up walking at least 3 miles… basically almost all the way home!  We got a cab less than a mile from our house because we just could not walk anymore. 🙂 Oh you can kinda see it in this picture, but my husband got me this diamond pendant necklace that I have been wanting for a few years.  It was such a thoughtful gesture to start our date night!

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Even the confetti at the concert was neat!!!

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Sunday was a pool day with my momma, my husband, and his little brother (from Big Brothers Big Sisters). 

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We just lounged and read and grilled out for lunch.  It was a nice relaxing way to end the jam-packed music-filled weekend. 🙂  I went to bed at 7pm because I was so tired!

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That wraps up our fun weekend! Now tell me about yours!

Questions:

  1. What did you do this weekend?
  2. What is the last concert you went to?
  3. Do you grocery shop alone or with a significant other?

 

Friday Favorites!

Hey guys!!!! I am so happy it is Friday!! I am ready for the weekend!!! My husband and I have a fun date night planned and a few other things on the agenda.  

Today I wanted to share some things I am loving lately with you all and would love if you shared some of your favorites with me too! Here we go… 

This tea.  We are obsessed with this in our household.  Jon and I don’t buy a lot of drinks to have at our house so it forces us to drink more water versus sodas or juice, but every now and then we get a little bored with water and need a little change.  We will make a big picture full of this tea to have on hand for the week and it’s such a great little treat that is super refreshing.  

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I just about died laughing when I saw this on instagram the other day.  I sent it to my husband and he totally agreed. 🙂 

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My sweet babies are always on my favorites list.  They are just the sweetest pups ever and so well-behaved (for the most part). 😉

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I am still loving making lettuce wraps/cups for meals lately.  The other night my husband and I wanted mexican so we decided on tacos.  To make mine a little healthier, I opted to use romaine leaves instead of tortillas for my tacos.  We sauteed onions, garlic, red pepper, and through in black beans and corn at the last minute to have a yummy mixture on our tacos.  We seasoned some fish (tuna for me and mahi for my husband) with taco seasoning and that was the best.decision.ever!!! It was sooo flavorful and yummy.  We just added salsa and avocado to the top!  Easy peasy and so delicious!!

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Here’s what one of my lazy dinners look like.  The other night my husband had plans with the boys so I found myself not really wanting to cook anything.  I burnt roasted up some sweet potatoes (extra to add on my salads for lunch) and grilled a kale veggie burger to chop up and throw in some romaine leaves for some lettuce wraps.  I added spicy mustard and avocado and it was such a yummy and filling meal.  When I put ingredients in lettuce wraps as opposed to just eating them, it makes me feel like I’m getting more food which is more satisfying and hey, extra greens are always a good idea.

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I’ve told you guys about my love for the One bars, but usually I just get the birthday cake flavor because I love it.  Well the other day at the store I picked up a couple new flavors and cinnamon roll was one of them.  Oh.my.gosh.  It was so good and reminded me of my childhood when I would wake up to the smell of fresh cinnamon rolls coming out of the oven ready to be drizzled with the sugary glaze.  So so so good.  If you try this flavor, let me know what you think!!

That’s all I’ve got for today!! I hope you guys have an amazing and safe weekend!!! I’ll talk to you all next week!!

Questions:

  1. Favorite pre-packaged bar?
  2. Do you like Mexican food?
  3. Tell me a Friday favorite of yours!

Favorite Finds at Trader Joes!

Hey friends!!!!  How is your week going so far?  Ours has been pretty normal and non-eventful, which is really nice sometimes. 🙂  We are going to the Taylor Swift concert this weekend (!!!!) and I cannot freaking wait!  Call me crazy, I don’t care.  I love Taylor Swift and I think her music is awesome.  It has definitely changed over the years, but I still really like it!  

Did I ever tell you guys that some of my high school friends and I got to meet her on her tourbus in a Walmart parking lot when we were in high school? This was back before she was super famous.  She was so genuine and really sweet, and SUPER tall.  We had a really fun time chatting with her… she said she loved my name. 😉 

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Anyway, today I am sharing my latest favorite finds at Trader Joes.  I don’t shop at Trader Joes often because I usually can’t get everything I want from there and it’s not in a very convenient location for me to go shopping, but I do love stopping by there every now and then to stock up on some goodies!  I really love all of there snack items and dips!  Let’s get started!!  Here’s what I picked up on my latest trip to Trader Joes!

Broccoli Florets.  You guys, these are so so so good.  They are like freeze-dried pieces of broccoli with yummy seasoning.  Great for an easy snack, but if you are like me, the whole bag is usually gone in one sitting.  Whoops. 🙂

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I love all of their different types of trail mix.  I usually stick to one with raw nuts and maybe some raisins, but they have a ton of unique ones with different types of nuts, seeds and dried fruit.  They also have individual portioned packs of trail mix which I will occasionally buy so I don’t eat 5 servings at once!  This Go Raw Trek Mix is super yummy with walnuts, almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, and raisins. 

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My husband and I are obsessed with pistachios and Trader Joes has such a good price for them.  I think this bag was around $5.  They do have the pre-shelled ones, but for some reason I like the process of taking the shells off myself.  Weird, I know.  🙂

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I just tried these cheese bites for the first time the other day and I am still on the fence about them.  It’s like dried out, crunchy, cheese cracker.  I don’t think I love the by themselves, but I think they would make a really yummy crouton on a salad so I think I will give that a go soon!  They do pack a good punch of protein so that is nice. 

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A little girl I used to babysit way back in the day was obsessed with all kinds of freeze-dried fruit and she got me hooked.  I don’t buy them often because I cannot portion control them for the life of me, but had to pick up a bag of these bananas the other day.  I love all the freeze-dried berries, but the bananas are definitely my favorite.  

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Now you tell me in the comments about your favorite finds!!!

Questions:

  1. Do you have a Trader Joes store near you?
  2. If you have one close to you, how often do you shop there?
  3. What are your favorite items to buy at Trader Joes?

Weekend Recap 8.19.18 Baseball + Dogs, Pool Time, Girls Night and a Movie

Hey Friends!!!! Back to work, back to routine, back to feeling tired. 🙂  But I will say I had a really great weekend with lots of relaxing and fun things thrown in there too!  

I’ll get to the weekend in a minute, but first I have to show you guys what we did last Wednesday night.  We had tickets to the Sounds game (minor league baseball team in Nashville), but it wasn’t just any Sounds game!

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It was Bark in the Park where you could buy a ticket for you and you pup!!! You know I’m not missing this opportunity to take my pups with me.  I’d take them everywhere I go if I could.  My mom, Rachael, and I loaded up the pups and headed to the park.  This picture below was the result of the cameraman saying the word “treat” because Callie wanted no part of this moment.  Riley looks terrified and Callie and Cooper have their tongues just hanging out.  

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There were a LOT of dogs at the stadium.  They had it roped off so you could only go in a few sections with the pups so that’s probably why it felt like there were so many. Riley had to sit on Mimi’s lap.  He was in heaven… probably because she was giving him bites of her hotdog and pretzel…

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I think Riley was a little concerned that Callie would not come out from underneath the seats.  🙂  Her happy place.  We gave her a couple calming tablets, but she did really well.  

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This is what happens when one of us has to pee. 🙂 

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This little monkey could have used the calming tablets on the car ride to the stadium… he was going nuts! lol But he settled down as soon as we got there. 

Love this girl! and Cooper!

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Friday night was pretty low-key as my husband was out of town and I was tired from the week.  I grocery shopped (favorite day to shop so you can avoid all the crazies who brave the store on the weekends), took the dogs on a walk, read my book and called it an early night.

Saturday morning I headed to a bridal shop to watch my bestie, Rachael, try on wedding dresses!!! Eeeek, it was so exciting!  No pictures yet… can’t spoil the fun!! But she looked flawless!

Afterwards Rach and I headed to lay out at the pool with my mom.  #Saturdaytradition After a few hours we headed home to get ready for a girls night.  Rachael, and our friend, Katelin, and I went to Del Frisco’s Grille.

We  started out with some prosecco and Rachael and I both got the kale salad with salmon and Katelin got a sandwich. It was a really yummy dinner with good company!

After dinner we headed to Bar Sovereign.  We met up with a few of our friends for a drink at this fun bar.  It is kind of a speak easy type bar, which is always fun.

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On Sunday morning I had a date with my bestie, Lissa, to take the pups on a walk in the park.  The pups love Lissa and get really excited to see her. 🙂

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After our walk I got ready to head back to the pool because the weather cleared up!  I spent the afternoon reading and chatting with my momma.

Late Saturday afternoon I had plans with Rachael to see the movie, Slender Man.  Yall, it was scary!!!!  We kept having to cover our eyes. LOL.  It is about this serial killer and we thought it would be more of a documentary-like movie, but instead it was a storyline based of the real serial killer.

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Afterwards I spent the night catching up with my hubby and catching up on a few shows before an early bedtime.  

I hope you all had a fun weekend! I would love to hear all about it!!

Questions:

  1. Best part of your weekend?
  2. Have you seen any good movies lately?
  3. Been to any new/fun restaurants recently?

Easiest Snack Ever – Delicious and Nutritious Protein Balls!

Hi friends!!! How’s it going? Everything is going well over here!  I hope you guys all had a really nice and relaxing weekend!  I will be back tomorrow to share a weekend recap with you guys, but today I have something else to share with yall!  If you’ve been following my blog for a while now you know that I am a huge snacker.  I love having little meals/snacks throughout the day so I never go hungry and I also don’t get stuffed from having a big meal.  I don’t always snack in the afternoon (just depends on what I had for lunch), but a morning snack is almost always a must.  I usually start my day with a big smoothie or a bowl of oatmeal, but I’m usually a little hungry around 10-10:30am for a little something before lunch.  

Today I am sharing a new recipe with you guys that I just made up and tested and it worked out well!  I try a lot of different combinations and they don’t always work out, but luckily this one was a winner so I wanted to share it with all of you so that you can enjoy it to!  I hope yall give it a try and like it as much as I do.

I am going to try to estimate measurements, but yall know I am not good about measuring ingredients.  And if you like more of a certain ingredient, add more of it.  If you don’t like a certain ingredient, omit it or swap it for something you like! 

The base of these protein balls are dates and almond butter, but you could easily swap the almond butter for peanut butter or any type of nut butter (or coconut butter) that you like!  I used pitted dates, creamy almond butter, cinnamon, unsweetened shredded coconut, roasted cocoa nibs, and plant-based vanilla protein powder.  You can definitely leave out the protein powder (or use a different kind or flavor), but I like to add in a little protein when i can to beef up my snacks a bit!

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I started with about 2 cups of dates in the food processor and pulsed until a got a crumbly texture.  Next I added about 3-4 tablespoons of almond butter and pulsed until it was all combined.  The creamy almond butter really helped the mixture incorporate together well.  

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Then I added in a teaspoon or two of cinnamon, a couple tablespoons of cocoa nibs and shredded unsweetened coconut and pulsed a few times until it was all combined.  This did not take long at all.  At the end I added in about 1-2 tablespoons of vanilla protein powder (if you use a protein powder, make sure it is one that is not chalky and that you actually like the taste of because you will be able to taste it).  Note – your mixture will be a little crumbly, but once you start to form the mixture into balls using your hands, the dates are sticky enough to hold it all together.   

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Then I just rolled the mixture into balls to pop into the freezer to set up.  You could absolutely add other nuts, spices, dried fruit, seeds, or extracts depending on your taste preferences.  The sky is the limit.  🙂 

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I just leave these in the freezer and pop a few in a container to take on the go.  Lately I have been enjoying a few crumbled up on top of a green yogurt for my morning snack or just plain if I am in a rush.  They make a really tasty snack filled with lots of nutrients and staying power. 

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It really is as easy as that!  The food processor makes this process super easy and quick, but you could absolutely use a blender if you don’t have one.  I hope you guys give this a try if it’s up your alley!  

Have a wonderful day, friends!!

Questions:

  1. Favorite snack?
  2. Do you regularly make any type of snack balls or bars to keep on hand?
  3. What was the best part of your weekend?

Weekend Recap Part 2 San Antonio Trip

Good morning!!! It’s Friday!! yay!!! So happy the weekend is here even though this week was pretty short for me since I was out of town until Tuesday.  My husband had a work trip planned earlier this week so we decided to incorporate a little getaway into it so I tagged along.  We left our house Sunday morning at early oclock for the airport.  Hated leaving this sweet face.  

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Once we arrived in San Antonio and grabbed our rental car, we drove around for a bit before stopping at Cappys for lunch!  It was hidden behind a couple buildings, but we found it and headed right in.  

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There was a little bit of a wait so we decided to grab a drink while we waited.  When on vacation…right? 🙂 

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We realized that it was still brunch when we got there so my husband went with the Weekend Breakfast with steak, eggs, potatoes, fruit and pancakes and I went with the salmon over a kale salad.  We both devoured our meals and left nice and full. 

After lunch we drove around a bit before checking into our hotel.  It was pretty rainy on Sunday so we didn’t get to do any walking around the city that day.  After a little rest, we cleaned up and headed to Down on Grayson for a cocktail before dinner.  We sat outside and it felt so nice.  

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We were planning on walking to another restaurant for dinner, but it started to drizzle so we ended up just popping inside for dinner there.  When I see crispy brussels on the menu, there is no way I am passing those up.

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The picture doesn’t do the brussels justice, but yall, these were humungous and so crispy and delicious.  Hands down the best brussels I’ve ever had.  My husband got the fish tacos for his meal and I got the grouper.  We both loved our meals.  

On Monday morning after a quick workout at the hotel gym (I LOVE working out in new spaces) Jon and I picked up a smoothie on the way to the office.  I may be a little biased, but I think he is sooo cute. 🙂 

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After dropping off my hubby, I headed to a Massage Envy for a 90 minute massage.  I haven’t talked much about my back pain since before my surgery, but it has been really bad lately.  It went away while I was in the hospital and even for a bit after I was home from surgery, but a couple weeks later it came back just as bad as ever unfortunately.  I did recently get another spinal epidural injection so hoping that takes the edge off soon.  I haven’t really been able to figure out if it was the lack of activity in the hospital, the first steroid injection I got, or the fact that my stomach was hurting so badly that made me not notice my back pain while I was sick, but I suppose it doesn’t really matter.  Thankfully the massage therapist I had on Monday morning was fabulous.  Best massage I have had in a LONG time.  It was wonderful.  After my massage I found a nail salon that accepted walk-ins and got my pitiful nails redone.  You can’t see them well in the first picture, but they were horrendous. I usually go with pretty neutral colors, but was feeling a little festive so went with a bright red.  

After my nail appointment I picked up a salad and some snacks at Trader Joe’s before heading back to pick up my husband.  We headed back to the hotel and changed our clothes for a walk/run on the River Walk downtown.  It was so beautiful.  Afterwards we headed to Supper in an area of town known as The Pearl.  We didn’t make reservations, but decided to just grab a drink while we waited about 45 minutes for a table.  

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Date night with my sweet man.  

We got the broccolini appetizer to start and it was soo yummy.  It had pesto, white bean spread, and other goodies on top.  Definitely a yummy way to eat some veggies.  My husband got the gnocchi and I just had a small beet salad (I had leftover grouper at the hotel that I wanted to eat afterwards!).  The portions were definitely small, but the flavor was amazing.  Definitely recommend this restaurant if you are ever in the San Antonio area.   

My bestie, Lissa, watched the pups while we were out of town (we are so lucky to have her because our pups adore her) and she sent us this picture of Riley “helping” her in her classroom on Sunday.  

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We were exhausted on Tuesday night and fell asleep right as our heads hit the pillow.  I caught an early flight back to Nashville on Tuesday (my husband had to work another day down there).  We had a blast exploring San Antonio and really enjoyed the yummy food there too!  

I have a few fun posts coming your way next week!  I hope you all enjoy your weekend!!! xoxoxo

Questions:

  1. Have you ever been to Texas? San Antonio?
  2. What is your favorite cuisine to get if you go out to eat?
  3. Do you work out while you are on vacation?