Exploring + Traveling

What to Do (and Eat!) on a Quick Trip to Austin, Texas

What to Do (and Eat!) on a Quick Trip to Austin, Texas

I recently went back to Austin, Texas for the second time and got to explore a bit more of this weird and wonderful city. Here are my best recs from what we got to see on our short trip!

Our Trip to Vail + Denver

Our Trip to Vail + Denver

We took a trip to visit my brother and found ourselves a winter wonderland full of adventures and amazing food and even cage diving with sharks!

on the coming and the going.

on the coming and the going.

there's something about roots, and something about wings. there's something about adventure, and something about contentment. there's something about there, and still so much about here.

Hiking Crabtree Falls

This Labor Day, my roommate and I decided to take advantage of the weekend's BEAUTIFUL weather and get outside! Here are some snapshots from our Crabtree Falls hike!

On Island Time // My Grand Cayman Vacation

On Island Time // My Grand Cayman Vacation

I've never been much for the beach, but this one changed my ways. Here's a little recap of my trip!

Friends + Art + Tacos

Friends + Art + Tacos

A day in Washington, D.C. spent marveling at incredible art, catching up with a sweet friend, and devouring vegan tacos is a day WELL spent. Here's a quick recap!

A Guide to Richmond Coffee Shops

A Guide to Richmond Coffee Shops

I decided to make the most of all the coffee options in my little city of Richmond, VA, and here's the comprehensive guide to ALL OF MY THOUGHTS.

When You Take a Two-Week Roadtrip...

If you follow me on any form of social media, you've been inundated with pictures from my travels over the last two weeks...and I can't even really apologize for that! Every day, I struggled to choose just a few images to share-- there were SO MANY. 

In just two weeks, my dad and I drove all the way across the country, from VA to CA and then all the way back. It was a whirlwind. It was awesome. I saw a LOT and I learned SO MUCH.

Here's what I learned on our great #RADnDadventure:

  • Good road trip tunes make even the most boring desert drives more exciting and bearable. When you find a North Pole radio station playing only Christmas music when you're in 100+ degree weather, CRANK IT UP and jam. It's the best. Needtobreathe's live album and the Les Miserables soundtrack are also great choices.
  • There is SO much open land in this country. It's refreshing to be reminded of that.
  • Every big city has a street named Broadway.
  • LOTS of road construction happens in the summertime.
  • New Mexico has the prettiest wild sunflowers on the side of their highways.
  • Nap whenever possible. Drink coffee whenever possible. Pee every time you stop.
  • We live in such a vast, diverse, beautiful, wild country. Seeing so much of it in such a short amount of time blew my mind. I'm so grateful for the freedom to travel like that without any restrictions. I'm grateful for how easy it is to cross state lines. I'm grateful for kind, welcoming people almost everywhere we went. I'm thankful for the chance to see so much of this land the Lord has made.
  • There are attractive, bearded, tattooed, hipster men in EVERY city. It's a beautiful thing. There is hope for me yet!
  • Being in the car for so many hours will make you feel crazy. You will get delirious. You will desperately need alone time. Laugh it off. Find time to recharge, even if it's just a few minutes in a quiet room or an evening with no plans to just journal in the hotel room. You need it.
  • You really can't ever go home again. (More on this later.)
  • Moving so much and covering so much ground so quickly is both exciting and exhausting.
  • Family is everything. Make time to see the people you love. Cherish it. These are the people who love you endlessly, support you relentlessly, and care about you deeply, and that makes them the very best of people.
  • Live music is always a good idea. When you're in Nashville, find live country/folk/acoustic music. When you're in New Orleans, find live jazz music. When you're in Flagstaff, go to The State Bar and hope that a singer-songwriter is there playing his music for you to fall in love with.
  • You can go so far when you just decide to do it. My dad said this one point during our trip, and it's so true. We just went for it, and it was awesome. It has made me want to just make plans and make trips happen way more in my life. Find some time, find some money, and just do it.

This was a once in a lifetime trip. It was awesome. I'll remember this adventure forever.

The Adventure Begins!

Earlier this summer, my dad and I randomly started talking about visiting Ventura, CA where my great aunt and uncle live-- it's one of our favorite places! One of my bucket list items for this year was to visit two new states, so I thought it would be awesome if we could take a road trip and knock that off along the way as well.

We mapped out three potential routes we could take, and settled on two of them. One took us through several cities where relatives of ours live, so we decided to make that our route coming home, with the route going out to CA taking us through several states new to me!

Once we checked in with family and friends and everyone was free on the right dates (what are the odds of that?!), we finally committed to making the whole trip a go!

Now, the time has come, and we're off on our big adventure tomorrow!

 

Follow along on social media with the hashtag #radndadventure if you want to see what we're up to. I'll be back when we're back-- no guarantees on posts from the road :)

Charlottesville for the 4th

My parents and I decided to take a day trip to Charlottesville this 4th of July, and it was such a great day! There was rain in the forecast, but it thankfully didn't hit us until we were on our way home.

The Charlottesville City Market is a GREAT farmer's market-- we ended up with some black raspberries (we made them into a muddled berry/simple syrup that made for some EXCELLENT vodka tonics), sour cherries (that Mom turned into the most delicious mixed berry cobbler that we topped with ice cream), lettuce (we made Asian shrimp lettuce wraps that I unashamedly devoured), corn on the cob (because it's just necessary on the 4th), and really yummy vegan/gluten-free crackers.

Charlottesville's Downtown Mall has some adorable little shops, too! I love wandering through bookstores and shops full of paper goods...and I showed such good self-control surprisingly!

One of my bucket list items for this year was to go wine tasting at a new vineyard, so we checked out Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyard! It was absolutely BEAUTIFUL. I would love to live in a place like that. It's confirmed now that I love love love dry wines and prefer reds to whites, and it was fun getting to try five of Pippin Hill's wines. If anyone needs a wedding spot, CHECK THIS OUT right now. It would be perfect.

Our trip home was slightly scary at points with the crazy rain and storms, but we stopped at a MASSIVE antique store where I finally found a globe I love (I've been looking for ages!) and a really cool vintage metal tin to store art supplies-- nothing like some antique bargains!

Hope you all had a fabulous Independence Day weekend celebrating our beautiful country, and that WORLD CUP WIN too!

Rethink in Texas

Before I share about my recent Texas journey, let me tell you a little backstory...

At the beginning of 2014, a really cool thing happened. Through friends and connections that were so perfectly orchestrated by a God who writes awesome stories in our lives, I started blogging for Rethink Creative Group. It was the first time I was blogging seriously, and for a site that wasn't just my own, and I absolutely loved it. I loved the other people on the team, and loved being part of how Rethink was growing.

Last August, as Rethink was growing as a business, we made a change to that blog. We launched a whole new site called The Rising blog, and it became my baby. I wasn't just blogging anymore, but also leading a team of incredibly talented writers from all over the country, editing all content, running our social media, and helping bring everyone's words to life in a new space.

This past May (as in last month), I officially came on board part-time with Rethink as the Chief of Story. I wrapped up nannying the two boys I had fallen in love with this year and my work with Rethink became my sole job. IT WAS SO EXCITING. 

Then, last week, I flew out to Texas for a full week with the Rethink guys. The craziest part of all of this? I had never met David and Mark who are the co-founders of Rethink. The two of them plus Blair (who I had hung out with a few times over the last year when he passed through Richmond) and I make up the whole staff team currently. 

Basically, this past week has been one of the all-time best ever. Getting to finally be in the same place with these men that I've known and worked with for over a year was amazing. We traveled all over Texas, worked together, had many long and incredible conversations, laughed harder than I have in a long time, had a complete blast, and grew so much closer in just seven days than we ever could have spread out all across the country.

Coming home to Richmond on Tuesday was bittersweet. I love this work, love these people, and love what we get to create together everyday. It was so much fun to all be together to do that, but I know we are all coming back to our respective cities ready to make more magic happen for our clients.

Here are some snapshots from my week in Texas!

Traveling from DCA-->DFW (and leaving love letters for strangers)

Austin, TX at Adelbert's Brewery (filming a promo video for them) // Dinner out with the team // Relaxing at our AirBnB // Visiting the State Capitol // More video shooting

 

Grapevine, TX at Redefined Coffee House // Best tacos EVER // Hadassah Valentine (Rachel and David's adorable daughter!)


ps-- if you need any marketing/creative work/websites/social media strategy/etc...check out Rethink! We would LOVE to work with you.

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