Friday, August 22, 2014

SUMMER IN TENNESSEE

So today was my third day back at college for this new Fall 2014 semester, and it’s OK. I’ll give it that. I’m finding the only thing I like about college is the fact that I am able to pick my own classes and when. Like if you’re not a morning person, you could pick an afternoon or even a night class. And if you’re an early bird like me, you could choose a morning class (my first class starts at 7:50am).  Also college means no more going to school your typical Monday-Friday. I go to school Monday, Wednesday, and only my first class on Friday, so that opens up more days to study and whatnot. Other than that, I’m just not a college person, and I’d gladly be anywhere else. Like Tennessee…



This past May and June I was in Tennessee for two reasons: 1) my oldest sister was getting married and 2) to just spend quality time with the family. Starting back college meant being tied to textbooks, revising, and limited freedom. So I guess I’ve just been reminiscing on the good ole times spent in Tennessee – wishing I could trade in my homework for a trip to the south. Thinking about all this, I’ve decided to share some pictures from my trip with you now, even though I should have made this post 3 months ago! And I promise to make it as quick as possible.



So literally after school ended for the summer my family and I headed to the San Diego airport to catch our flight to Knoxville, TN. I just love the view from planes!



 In Tennessee, you can get McDonald's sweet tea by the jug. It's a real bummer you can't get that here in California.

We stayed at my grandmother's house as always and she has the most beautiful house on the lake.





My two favorite restaurants to visit in Tennessee are Cracker Barrel and Shoney's. They bring back childhood memories. Two fast food places I recommend are Cook-Out and Krystal. Cook-Out gives you a lot of good food for a low price and Krystal is like White Castle only tastier.



Pigeon Forge is about an hour and a half from my grandmother's, so of course we had to pay DollyWood a visit! And no, sadly we did not see Dolly Parton.


























After a long day spent in DollyWood, we headed to Gatlinburg for some shopping and treats. For candy we always go to the Old Smoky Candy Kitchen and we discovered a new place called Kilwin's for divine fudge. They also give you endless free samples to make sure you get your perfect box of fudge. The sea salt caramel and the dark chocolate raspberry truffle are my favorite.








Next up is my sisters wedding. Their wedding was held outdoors at The Reserve at Bluebird Hill. The ceremony was followed by a brunch, mini desserts, mimosas, dancing, music, laughter, and a good time. All about good vibes. Photo credits go to photographer Jennifer Crook, who did an amazing job with the following wedding pictures.





















And now we're to the end. I'm sorry for the long post. I really need to stop these lengthy posts. I just had so much fun looking at all the photos. Imagine if I added all 1,000? You know what, let's not even go there.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

HUNTINGTON HARBOR

As I'm sitting here relaxing in my bedroom, a coffee cup size of green tea by my side, for some reason I began thinking of trips I took this summer - one of which was with my family to Huntington Beach. This is my last week of freedom before college starts back with nothing else planned besides reading and watching movies, so reminiscing on past trips taken this summer probably isn't the best thing because I'll be sad wishing I was back there. But I decided to share a little something nonetheless.




Last month in July, my aunt took my siblings and I to Huntington Beach for a day out in the sun paddling kayaks. We rented kayaks through Huntington Harbor Boat Rentals. Providing a selection of kayaks, paddleboards, boat rides, and a stunning location, they did not disappoint. 
The waterways are outlined with gorgeous million dollar houses and private docks for the homeowner's boats. Some boats were little tugboats, some were speed boats, and some were as big as ships but they were all as equally fascinating. 

My sister and I were always behind everyone as we kept stopping to relax and take in the ambiance of this place. I didn't take a lot of pictures for fear of dropping my camera into the water or getting it wet somehow, so sorry for that!

This castle style home is on sale for $4.5 million. Anyone want to buy?





After kayaking for two hours, we lunched at Olive Garden. I ordered the Fettuccine Alfredo and Raspberry Lemonade, and it was already mid-meal until I realized I never took a picture of my food! I never forget to do that! I snapped photos of the desserts though which I find is always better than the main course. We ordered the Amaretto Tiramisu Dolcini, Strawberry & White Chocolate Cream Cake Dolcini, Dark Chocolate Mousse Cake & Caramel Cream Dolcini, and Dark Chocolate Cake to share amongst the six of us. My favorites are the Dark Chocolate Mousse Cake & Caramel Cream Dolcini and Dark Chocolate Cake. I just love the light and creamy textures of the dolcinis.