A Lovely Fall Break…

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers” -L.M. Montgomery

The weather this fall has been unseasonably warm even for South Carolina, so we took advantage of the continued summer to plan a beach trip over the long weekend.

Nothing on the schedule except for beach walks and watching some football (for Jody) which meant plenty of time to play and relax.

Dinner on the patio at Bistro 217 was the perfect way to end the day (Eloise is a big fan of their homemade banana ice cream).

We took one more beach walk before heading home. Until next time!


A Lovely Little Apple…

“Autumn seemed to arrive suddenly that year. The morning of the first September was crisp and golden as an apple” -J.K. Rowling

The weather was so beautiful yesterday that we decided to hop in the car and head up to Sky Top Orchard in Flat Rock, NC. Only a two hour ride from Columbia, Sky Top is the perfect destination for a day trip. In addition to acres of varietal apple trees, the orchard features a market of specialty apple products, fresh cider and delicious goodies, including hot apple cider donuts. There is a playground and tables outside where we were able to have a picnic lunch before we started picking.

Eloise was proud to help select the ripe fruit and place in our basket, and we are planning to make some apple crisp together this week. Make sure to add this fun, family activity to your fall list!


A Lovely Little Folly…

Happy Labor Day!

Our family spent the holiday weekend in Folly Beach, SC, visiting with cousins, playing on the beach and cheering on the Gamecocks to their first win of the season!

Eloise was so excited to follow her older cousins around and particularly enjoyed her cheese quesadilla dinner at local favorite, Taco Boy. Mom and Dad were also excited to sneak downtown for brunch at The Grocery and King Street shopping (so many great Labor Day sales).

{These Gamecocks were ready for a win!}{Brunch at The Grocery}{Skinny margarita at Taco Boy 🌮🍹}

Hope you enjoy your day off!


A Lovely Farewell to Summer…

"When summer gathers up her robes of glory and like a dream, glides away" -Susan Whitman

The hazy days of summer are drawing to a close, but before a new routine gets underway, our family was able to squeeze in a final beach trip to Hilton Head Island.
We settled into The Westin for the weekend, which is beautiful and child-friendly boasting four pools and easy beach access.

Eloise and I enjoyed exploring the area during our morning walks, and of course she played hard – swimming and making new friends- until crashing for her afternoon nap.
The highlight of the trip was spending time with our Hilton Head cousins and reliving some childhood memories in Harbour Town where we saw the legendary Gregg Russell perform under the oak tree delighting children and parents just as I remembered (he's currently in his 41st season). Storm clouds rolled in the final afternoon of our stay but cleared off just in time for date night (thanks to our lovely niece for babysitting).

Before heading home, we let Eloise loose on the beach to expend some energy. At 23 months old, she is always in running mode (or flying as she calls it) and doesn't meet a stranger.
Goodbye, beach!


Lovely Little May…

Does the calendar really say June 1? The last month was busy as we celebrated family birthdays, Mother’s Day, the end of Eloise’s first school year and turning 21 months old, a fun beach week, play dates with friends, and Memorial Day weekend to kick off summer. I’m grateful for all of the happy memories we made and excited for the sweet summer ahead!

Beach fun 🏖:
{Special birthday date at our favorite spot, Chive Blossom}

{Mother’s Day tea ☕️}

{Celebrating Nonni’s birthday 🎂}
{Birthday dinner with the sweetest girlfriends at new favorite, 1801 Grille!} 

{Play dates and pool days with good friends 👭}

{21 months old!}

Memorial Day fun 🇺🇸:

Happy summer!


A Lovely Little Lake…

“So lovely was the loneliness of a wild lake” -Edgar Allen Poe

The lovely Lake Oconee was our weekend destination and provided the most peaceful and relaxing setting. It was our first visit to the Ritz Reynolds Plantation, and we quickly embraced its elegant and rustic charm. A luxe lodge nestled on the water about an hour from Augusta, the property is strategically scattered with adirondack chairs, chimeneas, walking paths and twinkle lights to create a restful environment. 

After getting settled into our room, we headed to the lawn to catch the sunset and opening reception for the conference Jody was attending. Dinner on the patio followed where we looked up at the stars while snuggled under fleece blankets, and we ended the evening around the fire pit roasting s’mores.I hit the gym and spa Saturday morning while Jody conferenced, and then we met up to explore the Oconee Trail. By the time we made it back from our walk (six miles later), we were hungry and ready for a lakeside lunch. It was a treat to have an afternoon without any plans, so we meandered from deck chairs to playing ping pong in the “backyard” to a cozy spot in front of the roaring fire in the lobby to read.

​​In fact, cocktail hour lingered a little too long, and we rushed to get ready for dinner and Casino Night. The dealer might have gotten the best of us at the Black Jack table, but I always feel lucky to spend a weekend away with my guy.


A Lovely Little New Year…

“Should old acquaintance be forgot,

and never brought to mind?

Should old acquaintance be forgot,

and old lang syne?” – Auld Lang Syne, Robert Burns, 1778

Did you sing the classic song above when the clock struck midnight on New Year’s Eve? According to history, the tradition began in Scotland where people would gather and sing together bidding adieu to the past and ushering in the new year. 

Since our Little Lovely was so young last year Jody and I stayed in and had a quiet New Year’s Eve, barely making it to the ball drop. So this year we were excited to plan a fun little parents’ getaway to Charleston to ring in the New Year.

We feel lucky to live so close to a city  which is consistently listed as one of the best and beautiful in the country. Each time we visit the downtown corridor we notice more change and development. While we have our favorite go-to hotels and restaurants, this quick trip was the perfect chance to try something new.

Our first stop was checking into The Dewberry, the newly opened hotel on Marion Square located in the renovated and repurposed L. Mendel Rivers Federal Building. I must admit that I have probably driven by this building many times before and never noticed it. It’s been transformed into a stylish, mid-century modern showpiece with immaculate attention to detail. Marble was found to match the building’s marker and lighting and fixtures were chosen to accentuate the 1960s vibe while offering a modern twist.  Our room was well appointed with a nice view of Marion Square, and I was impressed with how quiet it was considering our location. 

Another interesting feature in the lobby is Garden and Gun Magazine’s first Field Shop offering a variety of curated, southern goods for purchase. The perfect spot to browse or grab a souvenir. After an early check-in, we set out for some shopping on King Street and took our time meandering through shops. We made our way to The Thoroughbred Club inside of The Charleston Place for an afternoon cocktail- it was National Champagne Day after all.  A little rest and then time to get ready for our New Year’s Eve dinner at Chez Nous, an intimate and authentic French restaurant nestled in a charming house so you feel as if you are a guest. Charleston’s restaurant scene is booming, and Chez Nous has been on our list for a while to try, however; they just recently began taking reservations. The New Year’s eve menu was Prix Fixe and included some decadent and classic dishes.   The night was still young, so we ventured to The Belmont, a chic watering hole creating innovative and classic cocktails on Upper King, for a drink before returning to our hotel that was hosting a party for guests.   A big band crooned standards as we danced and counted down to midnight, and as a surprising treat, Charleston local, Darius Rucker, took the microphone right before midnight to serenade the crowd.  

 A memorable night to be sure.  Wishing you a healthy and happy new year!