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Guys…the Raums are being spontaneous!

Last Thursday, I woke to a text from Jeff (he leaves for work earlier than me) asking if we had any plans this weekend. I answered negatively, and asked him why he was asking…to which he responded by asking if we had any plans the next weekend.  A bit exasperated (keep in mind I had just woken up three minutes earlier), I responded, “?? I don’t know. Why?? Are you going somewhere?”

Then came the big reveal: Jeff had tentatively planned a trip to Universal Studios Orlando to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter the following weekend! He told me he had originally planned to keep the whole trip a total surprise – like, “Pack your bag, we’re going away” style – but thought better of it, not wanting to take the joy of researching things beforehand away from me (what he really meant was, “I know you’re a control freak and completely surprising you could be a disaster,” but to be fair, I do love me some vacation research).

It’s going to be a very quick trip – we’re talking, arrive Friday evening, spend the day at the park Saturday followed by dinner somewhere, go to bed, leave at the crack of dawn Sunday morning. The way he had originally booked things was to fly in AFTER 11 PM on Friday, but we ended up changing the incoming flight to put us there just after 6 (ahem…*control freak*). This way, we can at least spend some time exploring City Walk and our resort, rather than literally arriving and hitting the hay immediately. Ideally, we’d leave a little later on Sunday, but our flight options were limited and we’d need to check out of the hotel by 11 AM anyway (Jeff hates not having a “home base” when we travel). But we’re super excited – neither of us has been to the Harry Potter attraction, and I’ve never been to Universal Studios, period. We’re not really “theme park people” typically, but we both love Harry Potter and Jeff’s been dying to go for a long time (he sneakily had us watch all the movies last weekend during the most recent snow storm). Plus, it’ll get us out of the cold for a couple of days – I think it’ll be the perfect quick getaway.

So, we leave this coming Friday – we’ll be staying at the Cabana Bay Beach Resort (it’s a retro-themed resort with two huge pools and a lazy river – it’ll probably be a bit cool to swim at a high of around 73, but we won’t really have time anyway, so that’s okay), and Jeff purchased park-hopper passes for Saturday, which means we can go between Universal Studios – where Diagon Alley is – and Islands of Adventure, where Hogsmeade is located. The only attraction our tickets don’t include is the water park, but again, it probably won’t be warm enough, and we’d be a little short on time anyway. Jeff’s also excited to check out the Jurassic World exhibit, and I’m pumped for the Simpsons attraction. If anyone’s been and has “must do” recommendations, I’m all ears…we’re also open for dinner recommendations for Saturday evening. We’ll probably grab food at City Walk on Friday, but we’re undecided for Saturday – should we stay within Universal Studios, or venture out? What’s good in Orlando? Any and all recommendations welcome!


Our Vacation in Pictures: New Orleans

Our trip to New Orleans was a work trip for Jeff (he was attending an IRA conference – thrilling!), but I opted to take the entire week off (after debating working remotely from the hotel) and wander on my own during the day…good decision, me! We stayed in the business district, which feels more like a modern city, but we were only a 5 minute walk from the French Quarter – and what an experience that is! It’s pretty much exactly what you picture – people of every age wandering the streets at every hour, drinks in hand, vendors and street performers vying for your attention. The architecture is beautiful – very similar to Savannah, with iron railings, lanterns, and lots of color. We had lots of good food, LOTS of drinks, and a little relaxation – all in all, it was a pretty great week (despite HOT temperatures, a ton of construction, and me getting lost multiple times – half the streets aren’t labeled!!). Bare with me…although I took my “good” camera, I didn’t use it once – all the below pics are from my (pretty old) iPhone.


And we’re off!



Sipping cold brew in the Ace Hotel


Rooftop pooltime


One night we went to eat at John Besh’s Italian restaurant, Domenica, and they gave us a complementary dessert because our food took forever to come out (we couldn’t have cared less). IT. WAS. DELICIOUS.



The night gets a liiiittle blurry after this…


Huge Ass Beers






If you order an acai bowl, you have to photograph it. It’s the law.


Lunch at Cochon Butcher





Jeff stood these on end and declared it “art.”





Our vacation through pictures: Savannah

I finally got around to uploading and editing my photos from Savannah! Despite some shaky weather (it rained almost every day we were there), our trip to Savannah was one of my favorites yet, and it was definitely the best food I’ve ever eaten, anywhere. If you ever have the chance to visit Savannah, don’t pass it up…there’s just something about it that feels different than anywhere else I’ve ever been. The Spanish moss, the squares, the cobblestone streets with real gas lanterns on every building…it’s really a dreamy place. There are ordinances in the city preventing historical buildings from being altered, and any new building needs to match the architecture and design of the older, Antebellum buildings. All of this combined with the quirky local history and countless ghost stories makes Savannah unlike any other city. I’d love to return some day!



As magical as horse-drawn carriages all over the place feels, I actually felt really bad for these horses 😦



The waving girl!



This fragrant garden was designed for blind people!



Love the color of our AirBnB’s door.



We LOVED this place.


Fresh off the plane with a to-go-sa 🙂



The coolest underground cocktail bar – the menu was an actual newspaper, and they make every cocktail you could possibly imagine. Jeff got to bring that glass with the weird guy on it home.



Old, old haunted brewery


Chillin’ out max in our hotel room.


Hold, please!

I’m still playing catchup from vacation, so I haven’t had time to post. I’ll be back soon…until then, here’s a shot of one of the 5 bajillion beautiful houses in Savannah.


Don’t rain on my parade

We’re getting ready to head south tomorrow, and the forecast is looking pretty shaky – rain predicted for both Thursday and Friday, with cloudy days Saturday and Sunday. We won’t let a little rain ruin our good time, though – we’ll just have to get a little creative. Some ideas I’m kicking around:

Check out the SCAD Museum of Artscad-msm-art_540x242

Watch the rain fall from the covered deck of a riverboatriverboat

Shop the downtown design district949724b3732a9bc222a1f7db1a1c0680

Indulge our sweet tooth at Lulu’s Chocolate Bar328998ba9d870d4b224c841352b6f19d

Take a tour of Southbound Brewing CompanySouthbound Brewing Co. Savannah Brewery

Lounge over coffee & pastries at Le Cafe Gourmetls

And of course, some of our already-planned activities are perfect for a rainy day – a covered trolley tour is perfect for sub-par weather, and some drizzle will make our ghost tour all the more spooky! Bring it on, rain – we’re ready for you!


Happy Friday

Happy Friday, friends! We leave for vacation next Thursday, so we’ll probably keep this weekend pretty low-key. Work gifted me some VIP tickets to a local minor-league baseball game for tomorrow night, so we might check that out if the weather’s nice. Other than that, I see a lot of lounging, probably some cleaning, and possibly a pool day in my future. I also downloaded “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” by John Berendt last night – it’s a novel about Savannah, and my mom insists that I read it before arriving. Apparently there are tons of landmarks and even a few people still around the city that she all but guaranteed we’d see at some point. So I’m going to dig in to that as well – possibly poolside! Have a fantastic weekend!



Our honeymoon – Mallorca

After departing Barcelona, we arrived on the tiny island of Mallorca for the second half of our honeymoon. We landed in the capital city, Palma, and drove the 30 or so minutes through lush, mountainous terrain to the Port De Soller, where we spent the remainder of our trip. Port De Soller is a tiny port village, and a top travel destination for…Germany. We actually encountered more German people than Spanish during our stay, and a lot of the restaurants offered kind of a German/Spanish fusion. It was interesting, to say the least!


Not too shabby for an airport


Rugged terrain

Our hotel room had been listed as a “partial ocean view,” but upon arriving to our hotel and stepping onto our balcony, I had to catch my breath – right in front of my eyes was the most crystal-clear, turquoise water I had ever seen, littered with luxury yachts and fishing boats. It was truly incredible. We spent our days wandering the tiny, hilly town, lounging by the pool or on the beach, and sipping on tropical drinks. One day, we took a boat out to an untouched, natural beach (a Unesco World Heritage site, which means it’s protected from being altered), stopping along the way to take a dip in the crystal clear water. Once on the beach, we hiked up a (steep, kind of scary!) cliff to a restaurant overlooking the sea, and dined on Paella and wine. It was one of the most magical afternoons I’ve ever had.


Our “partial ocean view”



My husband, the movie star


Haha…a bit of familiarity, overseas


This hilarious German guy on our boat trip insisted on taking this pic. Thanks, German guy!





I mean…



Casual lunch view



Steep terrain


This view was totally worth it


Toes in the sand…er, pebbles.



Beach pup!



Trolley to Soller



Don’t mind if I do!



Padron peppers with bacon -YUM


Sleepy boo at breakfast



Newlywed lovin’


Funny little bathroom signs



Could not get enough of these views



Fresh orange juice


Every restaurant in this village is outdoors…many of them literally didn’t have indoor seating.


Stray gato!


Dinner views



Last dinner ❤

It really and truly was a week in paradise. Looking at these pictures is making me desperately wish I was back in Spain right now…maybe one day we’ll be lucky enough to return, and maybe explore the rest of the island.

Our honeymoon – Barcelona

With the one-year anniversary of our wedding approaching, I thought I’d share some shots from our dream honeymoon – a five-night stay in Barcelona, Spain, followed by a five-night stay in Mallorca, Spain. Since we’ve owned our home for several years and have most of the of the essentials we need, we decided to forgo the traditional wedding registry in favor of a honeymoon registry through Zola (which we LOVED – so simple to use, and the layout is beautiful). Our friends’ and families’ generous gifts allowed us to go on a honeymoon we thought we’d only dream of, and we can’t begin to say how grateful we are for their generosity.

First up: Barcelona.


We decided on Barcelona for a few reasons: we both agreed that we wanted to go somewhere in Europe, and we were looking for the perfect combination of city/culture and beach/relaxation. We considered MANY options (Greece, Portugal, and Italy being the top contenders) before landing on Spain, but we ended up with zero regrets – Barcelona was everything we were hoping for and more. We spent our five days exploring the breathtaking architecture, wandering the streets and shops, and gorging ourselves on tapas, sangria, and so much ham. I’d love to return someday!


View from our hotel’s rooftop bar


Infinity pool


Our hotel had the most amazing design


Mah boo



Just your average BCN building, NBD


First (and best) churros con chocolate



My favorite meal of the entire trip was at this tiny Italian restaurant



The nightly menu is presented on this slate board…entirely in Italian


This might be the best plate of food I’ve ever tasted


So many bikes and mopeds


Sagrada Familia






Fresh juices at La Boqueria!




A boy and his ham


Cutest little tapas bar



Las Ramblas



Random cool street art…typical

Next up – Mallorca!



Savannah getaway

We’re heading down south for a long weekend to celebrate our one-year wedding anniversary, and I couldn’t be more excited! I created an activity-packed itinerary for this trip to optimize our brief stay, so I’m hoping to soak up as much of this gorgeous little city as possible. Here are just a few of the activities I have planned:


Anniversary dinner at The Olde Pink House


Strolls through Forsyth Park


Hop-on, hop-off trolley tour


Late-night ghost tour


Drinks along River Street

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A dip in the Brice hotel’s pool


Happy hour drinks in our rental’s adorable courtyard