TRAVEL

The Cotswolds

Will and I had the most magical time exploring the Cotswolds last month. After flying into London, we rented a car to head out to the British countryside. We drove on the opposite side of the road, and on the wrong side of the car- it was quite the adventure! Oh what a journey it was, and I loved every minute. We kicked off our time in The Cotswolds at Blenheim Palace (Will was in heaven). Being in the fields with the sheep was like a literal Thomas Kincaid moment (like those old puzzles and paintings)! The rest of the itinerary is below, and I assure you, if you’re considering an adventure to The Cotswolds, it won’t disappoint!

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Our first stop was at Blenheim Palace. My husband has been reading about Winston Churchill. We are both big fans of history, so this was such an amazing place to explore. While we were there, we were unable to go inside the palace because someone stole a golden toilet the night before! It was quite comical, but we still enjoyed every second of the grounds.

After leaving Blenheim, we went to Stow-on-the-Wold. It was the most quaint town. When you imagine the Cotswolds, this is a picture perfect town! We shopped around here all afternoon and then had a delightful Tea Time.

Lucy’s Tea Room has a tower of delectable treats. The building is just what you would dream up for your afternoon tea setting. We ate and drank entirely too much, but it was part of the fun!!

Cutter Brooks

The Cotwold Cheese Co.

St. Edward’s Church

Our Bed and Breakfast through Airbnb was something special. It was picturesque! The hosts, Ginny and Peter were delightful. We had a great stay and enjoyed every second of our time there.

Huxley’s in Chipping Campden for a warm, cozy, and delicious dinner.

There are lots of great antique stores throughout The Cotswolds. We stopped at a handful, and I cant remember all of their names, but Station Mill Antiques is one of them, off the beaten path.


Paris

Oh Paris… Have you ever been anywhere that made you feel like this place was intended for you? Then once you’ve gone away you have cravings for the sights, flavors, people, and sounds of the city? That is Paris for me. If you told me I could go tomorrow, I would be on the next flight out! There is something so romantic, yet harsh and delicious about Paris. Too many fabulous things to list. Enjoy our snaps and a few highlights from our trip! I can promise you, I will be back in Paris sooner rather than later!

We stayed at Hôtel Eiffel Trocadéro which is on Rue Benjamin Franklin. Fun fact, Benjamin Franklin Lived in Paris off and on for years and this was an area he loved to hangout. I only know this because my husband recently read a book on Ben Franklin. There was a statue of him erected just in front of our hotel. I HIGHLY recommend Hôtel Eiffel Trocadéro! The staff was amazing, especially Dora, she was the daytime concierge. The hotel is very boutique, with cozy quaint rooms, and a marvelous view of the Eiffel Tower. The view from our bed was breathtaking at night! It is a short walk to the metro and a few minutes walk to a variety of cafes and bistros.

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Food:

  • Café de Flore 9, this is a MUST! We ate here for an early lunch one saturday. Great food and an authentic Parisian atmosphere. I met blake Lively nextdoor at the little bookstore. ha!

  • Poilane, Ina Garten’s favorite bakery.

  • Boulangerie Pâtisserie Coudrier Geffroy, this was just down the street from our hotel and was THE BEST croissant I’ve ever had. They had darling angel macarons and eclairs with wings on the ceiling.

  • Café de la Poste, did not try but was recommended for lunch.

  • La Maison Rose, Famous for photos, this is near Moulin Rouge.

  • Laurent Dubois, Buy Cheese and take to picnic at the Eiffel Tower

  • Le Nemours, we ate here after visiting The Louvre area. It was delicious! We ordered croque sandwiches. I got the Monsieur and Will got the Madame. The drinking chocolate was out of this world.

  • Cafe Charlot, Recommended by Julia Engel, but we did not try it due to schedule!

  • Le Bristrot Paul Bert, we were unable to get a reservation here, but will try again next time!

  • Le Bon George’s, This is out of the downtown area, but worth the uber. Definitely order the Shepherd's Pie if they have it! And also ask for a jar of pickles.

  • Le Champs De Mars, this restaurant has a low rating, but it was one of our MOST FAVORITE meals we had during our trip. We stumbled upon it one night and decided to give it a whirl. SO delicious. It is expensive since it is right near the Eiffel Tower, but it was great! We ordered escargot, garlic bread, a salad, the filet with frites and lots of wine! The staff and experience was lovely.

Sweets:

  • Laudree, we went to the location near The Lourve! So iconic and delicious.

  • Popelini

  • Pierre Herme, many Parisians say these are the best macarons.

Activities:

  • Eiffel Tower / Carousel - Saturday

  • Luxembourg Gardens

  • Norte Dame

  • Arc de triumph

  • River Boat Tour

  • Musee de L’orangerie or Musee de Orsay

  • Sacré-Cœur/ Moulin Rouge

  • Take cheeses and a bottle of wine to the lawn of the Eiffel Tower and watch it light up.



Shopping most stores closed on Sunday:

  • Le Bon Marche, Department store in the 6th arrondissement also has a lovely supermarket attached.

  • Rue St. Honore and Avenue Montaigne, where all of the designer stores are located

  • St. Germain area, love this part of town, lots of cute shops.

  • Porte De Vanves, Flea Market- A MUST, LOVED THIS!

  • There are SO MANY cute shops on every corner. Just have fun exploring!

Getting Around:

  • Uber – We used this the most in Paris!

  • Le Metro – After the first day we started to figure out the metro. Much more difficult than London, obviously due to the language barrier.

  • Walking – We did A LOT of walking. Such fun exploring! 

 

 


London

Wow! I still don’t feel totally back in rhythm from our trip, but I have definitely been missing pieces of Europe. I am going to go city by city for my blog posts on our trip, because they all deserve their own feature.

First stop on our trip was London! I had been once before, but that was ten years ago and I did not appreciate the beauty of it, due to my age! We were so lucky to visit our friend Jonathan on this trip. He lives just out of the heart of London, in Earlsfield. It is a quick walk to the tube, (which we became really good at) and then just a ride downtown, or wherever you’re wanting to go! While we were there it became, as they say it, “proper fall’ in London, and it was wonderful. The streets are so lovely, every other building is covered in florals. So rich with history and full of culture. Will and I are both big fans of The Crown (I have always been a royal family lover, but that show made it worse). it was such fun to see some of the locations in real life. London was a day dream! I hope these snaps give you a little taste and be sure to checkout my highlight for London on my instagram page.

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FOOD:

Egg Break- Great trendy breakfast spot.

Beigel Bake - Our friend Jonathan loves this place, get the salt beef bagel with spicy English mustard for a snack one day! it is a Shoreditch novelty on Brick Lane.

Pret A Manger- Great little lunch spot on the days you are exploring. We combined this one with our day we had afternoon tea, because it was light.

Granger and Co.- We stopped in here for lunch our first day in London. it was bustling and has a very modern style. We ate at the Chelsea location and it was delish!

Dalloway Terrace - Inside the bloomsbury Hotel for afternoon tea. THIS WAS AMAZING. I felt like I was in a day dream

The Halfway House Pub- Yummy fish and chips with a modern British flare!

Chuchill Arms- Lovely pub with fabulous floral display, and a good spot for a drink.

Gordon’s Wine Bar - One of my most favorite things we did while in London. This is an underground wine bar that is thought to be the oldest in London. It was established in 1890. They let you select your items for your cheese board like a Buffet and the wine was great. Authentic local spot!

Dishoom- If you like curries or Indian/Pakistani food - need to have one while you're in London. They are everywhere and very good! Remember India was a colony of England’s until late 1947.

The Ivy Chelsea- good cafe, another "picturesque" restaurant.

Pizza East- great vibe, and in an outside part of London called shoreditch. Some of the best pizza I have ever had.



ACTIVITIES:

Alice’s and Portobello Market

Hyde Park

Kensington Palace

Peggy Porschen Cakes

Harrod’s

Primrose Hill- (right near Chalk Farm tube) for one of the best views of the city (it is the tip top of Regents Park), loads of nice cafés along the crescent towards Chalk Farm.

Buckingham Palace, Changing of the guards at 11AM but get there at 10AM to have a good view.

Tower of London

St. Paul’s, Great rooftop bar called Madison, right next great views, is worth a stop.

Trafalgar Square

Churchill War Rooms- If you like WWII history you will LOVE this, but your tickets in advance.

Westminster Abbey- A MUST

Big Ben, (Under Construction) but you can still see a lot of Parliament.

Horse Guards/White Hall

There are a million more things to do in London, but we were only there two days, so this is a High Points list!

Key West and Nassau, Bahamas

We had such a great trip celebrating our 2nd anniversary. We wen't on a cruise to Key West and Nassau, Bahamas. Five days of food, cocktails, and sunshine! I've put together a  list of go-to places from each city. 

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The first thing we did when we arrived in Key West was the Conch Tour. We saw things we wouldn't have seen on our own, and it helped us navigate later in the day!

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We went to lunch at Blue Heaven! Y'all, this place was out of a dream. Get the bloody mary, shrimp melt, and key lime pie. Such a wonderful atmosphere.

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I would love to tell you we had key lime pie once...but sorry, we had it twice in one day. Kermit's Key Lime Shop right near the water go in and grab a slice. We took ours down to the dock!

Bahamas 

Our day in the Bahamas went by way too fast, but we had plenty of fun to tell you about. We did an excursion on Blu Lagoon Island. This spot was picturesque! The boat ride out there was fun in itself. 

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Our boat stopped at a few places on the way back to Nassau. Can you believe this water?

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Spring Break Must-Haves

I have a serious case of Spring Fever. I've never been more ready for white jeans, Easter decor, and the beach as I am right now. We have a trip coming up mid-March that I started online-shopping for this week. I've found some great must-haves if you're headed on vacation in the coming months. I think you'll love these as much as I do... enjoy your shopping!    xo, CB  

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Weekend in Dallas

I took a short trip to Dallas for work last weekend and loved the city! It was my first time to Dallas, so I did a little restaurant scouting beforehand. I was given some wonderful restaurant suggestions that I want to share with y'all. Dallas has so many delicious places it was hard to choose, but enjoy a few snaps from my trip!

Meddlesome Moth  is located in Dallas' Design District. They have at least 40 beers on draft and plenty of delicious cocktails. I went for lunch and got the lamb gyro. Delicious place with a great atmosphere. 

Meddlesome Moth is located in Dallas' Design District. They have at least 40 beers on draft and plenty of delicious cocktails. I went for lunch and got the lamb gyro. Delicious place with a great atmosphere. 

HG Supply Co.  is at the corner of Prospect and Greenville. This is definitely a reservation place. We went on a Sunday night and still needed a reservation. If you go order the Moscow Mule. They have great cocktails but this one is their specialty.

HG Supply Co. is at the corner of Prospect and Greenville. This is definitely a reservation place. We went on a Sunday night and still needed a reservation. If you go order the Moscow Mule. They have great cocktails but this one is their specialty.

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Cheddar Bacon Burger with Avocado

Cheddar Bacon Burger with Avocado

Kale Caesar Salad

Kale Caesar Salad

Joy Macarons  is right across from HG Supply! Such a fun little dessert spot. They have a wide variety of flavors and ice cream sandwich macarons. The lavender honey was my favorite.

Joy Macarons is right across from HG Supply! Such a fun little dessert spot. They have a wide variety of flavors and ice cream sandwich macarons. The lavender honey was my favorite.

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R+D Kitchen  is part of the Hillstone Group. If you are familiar with this chain you know it didn't dissapoint.

R+D Kitchen is part of the Hillstone Group. If you are familiar with this chain you know it didn't dissapoint.

Any place that serves  sushi and french fries  is an instant favorite of mine! Needless to say I've added R+D to the favorite list. 

Any place that serves sushi and french fries is an instant favorite of mine! Needless to say I've added R+D to the favorite list. 

Our last meal in Dallas was Brunch at  Bread Winners . Everyone we talked to raved about this restaurant and the food. It is known to be a favorite of George W. Bush and now I know why. The inside is so quaint. You feel like you've just entered a cafe in Paris.  I ordered the Eggs Benedict with  Jalapeño Bacon  instead of Canadian. All I can say is  YUM.   The interior is historical and the food is even more memorable.

Our last meal in Dallas was Brunch at Bread Winners. Everyone we talked to raved about this restaurant and the food. It is known to be a favorite of George W. Bush and now I know why. The inside is so quaint. You feel like you've just entered a cafe in Paris.  I ordered the Eggs Benedict with Jalapeño Bacon instead of Canadian. All I can say is YUM. The interior is historical and the food is even more memorable.

If you ever head to Dallas I hope you'll try one of these spots! They were all great experiences with delicious eats.  CB 

 

Meddlesome Moth  - HG Supply Co. - Joy Macarons - R+D Kitchen - Bread Winners

GG Jubilee, Charleston SC

We got away to Charleston for the weekend at the beginning of December. Need I say more? This city never ceases to amaze me... The food and the beautiful architecture are enough to satisfy but we also enjoyed a day at Garden & Gun Jubilee! This was our second time attending GG Jubilee and like last year it did not disappoint. From the fabulous eats from Blackberry Farm to the delicious "New Fashion" from Blade and Bow the day was a dream. Tickets go on sale in August, you should go!