weekend trip: charlotte

earlier this month, g and i took a road trip down to charlotte, nc. it was our first road trip together – and we now know that i have serious driving anxiety and i should always pack a pillow to sit on for long drives. i’m a super fun wife.

the weather in charlotte happened to drop as soon as we arrived – from like 70 degree sunshine to 50 something gloom. but the sun did manage to peek out for the clouds on our last full day of exploring for which we were quite thankful.

friday was spent traveling to charlotte, checking into our hotel which happened to be hosting many nascar fans for the big race that weekend, and showering before lights out.

saturday morning we woke up refreshed and ready to find some good local acai bowls for breakfast to feel like we were truly living the dream. only to find out that every trendy cutesy place i had bookmarked was about 20 minutes in the wrong direction of where we needed to be at 9am. so bob evans it was! this was surprisingly g’s first time eatingĀ at bob evans, yet for me this was a chidlhood favorite. it was delicious and fast.

the whole purpose of being in charlotte for the weekend was for a conference I was attending. you can read all about it in this post. while i learned about all the things, g went exploring the town. he found mcdowell nature perserve and hiked around a bit until the wind just was too cold to bear. on his way back to the hotel he found the billy graham historical library and stopped in for a visit. he came out with a new book and a cute wooden sign for me. he’s so thoughtful and sweet, seriously.

after the conference, we tried to do the cool hip thing and visit the cool hip part of town – but we just weren’t feeling it after walking around and having an hour long wait for a table – or maybe it’s that we just weren’t cool and hip enough? so we ended up a few blocks down at ruru’s tacos & tequila. it was loud yet adorable – we really liked the atmosphere and the food! seemed like it’s definitely a local date night spot for many!

sunday morning was exciting! we had plans to meet up with brittany (longtime childhood friend) at elevation church. it was such a sweet expeiernce to get a behind the scenes look at prep for the service, while meeting some really awesome team members/staff. brittany was such a great host to us and we really enjoyed the experience. elevation is the kinda church you can learn so much from.

the rest of sunday afternoon was spent exploring 7th street market. we had pizza at a local spot and then took the train to southend. g and i discovered were not much of the exploring type – we need a plan, a destination, a purpose. so after walking around aimlessly for a few hours, the hotel was calling our names. lame, we know.

we chilled in the hotel, i probably took a nap, and then we awoke to grumbling stomachs, ready for the next meal. isn’t that just how it goes on vacation? hurrying up to the next time you’ll eat? haha

we stumbled out of the hotel to a beautiful pond with people paddle boating. so cute.

g and i are obsessed with mexican food and even though we had just had it the night before for dinner, we easily said yes to trying out zapata’s. and good glory we are so glad. this was hands down the best mexican food we have ever had. each of our dishes had amazing flavor. we now hold zapata’s at the top of the list, and like i said, we have frequented many a mexican restaurant since our trip, and nothing compares. so delicious.

monday morning, ironically, the weather in charlotte shot right back up to the usual sunny and 70 degrees – but alas we had to hit the road back home around 7AM.

it was fun to get away for the first time since being married. g had really been looking forward to our charlotte trip and would remind me often during the snowy maryland months that we were only xx days away. he’s always so encouraging and hopeful. i love him. would love to return to charlotte for a longer stay with a tad bit more of a purpose – maybe an itinerary created by some of the locals. that’s more my cup of tea. enjoy the pics, y’all!















half marathon #6.

flying out to cali just for a half marathon is crazy. i do agree with most of you.

but wouldn’t you agree that flying out to cali for a half marathon you haven’t trained for is a little bit more crazy?


so that’s what i did.

why didn’t i train?

lazy. just plain lazy. this is half marathon number 6 for me, so the question of whether i could do it or not never crossed my mind.

i knew my body could complete 13.1 miles. would i break any pr’s? nope. but that wasn’t why i signed up for it to begin with.

i’ve always wanted to race in perfect weather with a beautiful, flat route – & that is exactly what i experienced in good ol’ san diego. ((except there were def hills – – but whatever))


my cousins: jillybean, heathbar & haley







IMG_8548IMG_8519did NOT want to mess this one up.


IMG_8345& we are done!

overall, this was one of the most well-organized, well-spectated, well-run races i have ever run.

from parking, to the wave start, to the spectators, to the abundance of porta-potties, to the water stations, to the first aid cyclists, to the beautiful route, to the finish line, i was just amazed.

i took my dear-sweet-untrained-legs time during the run. i stopped to take pictures & videos. it was just so dang beautiful.

the rain held off & stayed overcast the entire race. everyone should run a race along the pacific ocean. i soaked in every moment.


to celebrate #6 being done, i had my first in&out burger. anything tastes good after 13.1 miles, but this had an extra special amount of calories that made my belly smile.




my after-race rituals are pretty standard – no matter where i am. i change outta my running clothes, get a shower & pass out.

after the race, my aunt michelle caught me napping up on the roof of the garage. the sun had finally come out, & rather than sleeping the afternoon away inside, i took an outdoor nap. it was the best.nap.ever.

here’s to #6. i def don’t recommend racing without training. my foot swelled up nasty the next day (it’s better now) although i’m quite certain my lack of training had nothing to do with my foot.

the human body is amazing & the amount of abuse it will endure baffles me.

i promise to train for #7.