I turned 27 yesterday! My day was spent with my family and Ryan having afternoon tea and cake, followed by some downtime and reading my newest book. We wound down the day with dinner at The Floridian, a free birthday pop at The Hyppo, and drinks at The Ice Plant; then, we finished the day by watching Bridget Jones' Diary with some microwave popcorn, my favorite :) It was a lovely way to spend a Sunday and I'm so thankful my little family and how special they all made me feel. I love you all, thank you for making yesterday so wonderful! 

^A few of the lovely gifts I received! Some new plants I've been wanting called string of pearls, the new Floret Farm book from my friend, Katie (it's so beautiful!), a new letter board from my friend, Britni, and an Iris Apfel brooch from my mom (we saw her documentary together at the Tampa Theatre a few years back!) 

Mother's Day

Mother's day was quite some time ago, but that doesn't mean I can't still relive it and celebrate my mom each day :) 

This year, my dad and my brother were at a playoff hockey game for the Tampa Bay Lightning so my mom dropped them off at the arena and headed out to an afternoon of fun. It began with a trip to Sea Critters over in St. Pete for a dockside lunch of our favorite crunchy almond shimp salad. I've posted about Sea Critters on here before, but it truly is my favorite spot to go to when I am back in town. It's a little bit of a drive for anyone that lives in Tampa, but if you are up for some pretty amazing seafood and a trip to the beach or an evening to watch the sunset, make the drive over! And do not leave before ordering the crunchy almond shrimp! 

When I was little, my mom used to surprise my my brother and me by taking us bowling after school. She was always a really great bowler and I for some reason made it up in my head that she used to even be part of a bowling league for the Sheriff's Office...sorry mom, I have no idea where I came up with that, but I definitely told everyone that until about three years ago. She was just that good ;) So this time, I took her bowling and we made a bet: the loser of 3 games must buy the winner the popsicle of her choice at The Hyppo in St. Pete. 

How fun is this bowling alley! I loved the pink exterior and it was just as much fun on the inside with the coordinating color blocked walls and carpets. 

See below for the bowling champion...to be fair I did beat her in the first game! The other two were pretty close as well ;) 

How sweet she is! She even offered to buy ME a popsicle even after I lost; but, alas, a deal is a deal and I held up my end of the bargain. Here she is with her black pepper cantaloupe trophy!  

She is easily the most selfless person I have ever met and I hope that I can one day spread as much kindness as she exudes daily. She really is the greatest for all she does for myself and for our family. I love you mom and I am so thankful to call you my own! 

A Day with Mey Mey

While my friend Sarah was in town around the holidays, we took an afternoon and met over in downtown St. Pete for an afternoon of lunching, catching up, and antiquing. We started off the day with lunch at Casita Taqueria. I had visited for dinner a few weeks prior and I had the most amazing Siracha shrimp taco...sadly it was just a daily special and wasn't on the menu when we went for lunch. We each tried one fish and one shrimp taco, with a side trio of queso, salsa and fresh guacamole, of course. Everything was delicious and with full bellies it was time to hit a few antique stores. 

While I don't have any photos of each one of the antique stores, There was a strip of about 5-6 antique stores all in a row right down from where we ate lunch. Our favorite was the Lion's Paw as they had everything from clothing, decor, and furniture. Sarah was obsessing over their selection of fur coats. She left with a silver champagne bucket and small purse, I left empty handed, however I found treasures at one of the other shops. One store, I cannot remember the name but it was just a few doors down, had some of the most beautiful antique jewelry I have seen in a while. They had a decently sized collection of art deco rings which have always been one of my favorites, it reminds me of my great grandmother's rings. 

While I don't have any photos of each one of the antique stores, There was a strip of about 5-6 antique stores all in a row right down from where we ate lunch. Our favorite was the Lion's Paw as they had everything from clothing, decor, and furniture. Sarah was obsessing over their selection of fur coats. She left with a silver champagne bucket and small purse, I left empty handed, however I found treasures at one of the other shops. One store, I cannot remember the name but it was just a few doors down, had some of the most beautiful antique jewelry I have seen in a while. They had a decently sized collection of art deco rings which have always been one of my favorites, it reminds me of my great grandmother's rings.  

After antiquing for a bit, we took a break to grab a juice down at Bodega. I was back and forth between two smoothie flavors, the mango and the lola rico, and the girl behind the counter kindly did a hybrid smoothie for me and did a combination of the two-which was delicious! I really love the juices and smoothies there, it's the perfect stop for a little snack that is healthy yet somewhat filling. Plus, the interior is too cute with that subway tile and neon, "You bet your sweet grass," sign.

The last store we stopped into for the day was China Finders. I had passed by this place several times and was always curious to stop in and see just what they had to offer. With Sarah being a blue and white china and Wedgwood collector, we had to stop in. Little did we realize just. how. much. china. they. had. It was row upon row upon row of every brand and style china you could imagine. I wasn't in the market for any china but it's an amazing place to keep in mind if you own some of your grandparents or even great grandparents china and you may be missing a piece to the set. If China Finders doesn't have the piece to complete your set, they have specialized workers there to track down the piece or pieces that you are looking for. 

Lastly, we absolutely had to stop into Hyppo for a popsicle. I will never be in the neighborhood and not stop in for one! Sarah has never tried it, but has most certainly heard all about it...from guess who? ;) She picked the guava hibiscus pop and I tried the guava tangerine; both were light and refreshing, I would recommend them! 


Thank you Mey for spending the day exploring about town with me! Come back to the Sunshine State ASAP, please! 

Pumpkin Heads

Last weekend I had a day and a half off of work with 0 plans, so it was off to St. Augustine I went. We had lunch at Blue Hen before we ventured into Palatka to check out Sykes and Cooper Farms. They had a large corn maze, farm animals, pumpkins for purchase, hayrides, and a beautiful sunflower field. It wasn't hours of entertainment, but it made for a fun hour and a half walking through the mazes, taking a hayride and picking out pumpkin to decorate later that evening. My favorite might have been the cute piggies eating all of their pumpkin snacks. Another favorite, that massive pig sleeping- Ryan said we could not keep him. Le sigh, maybe next year. 

The next morning we went to Theo's per my request for dippy eggs and toast. Theo's makes THE BEST bread rolls that they use on all of their sandwiches and as toast. When I used to visit Brit and Bobby at Flagler I would always leave with a half dozen to bring back with me to Tallahassee. This trip there was no different, I was eating toast at home for days. Other than their toast, they make massive cinnamon rolls that are the size of your head, quite literally. They sell out of the cinnamon rolls early, so it's an extra incentive to avoid sleeping in. After breakfast we headed back to paint our pumpkins and eat more pumpkin cheesecake pops. I'm still laughing over those pumpkins we painted. Classic pumpkin heads. 

I Brocante Even

A few weekends back, when Ryan was in town, we met up with Whitney and Casey to shop at the monthly vintage market, Brocante. I couldn't help but snap a picture when we all left because our finds were absolutely ridiculous. Casey and his brass horn, Whitney and her alpaca cape and tiny rose enameled tin, me and my yellow bubble lamp, and Ryan with his oil can and time card holder. We spent the rest of the morning having brunch together before Ryan and I went over to The Hyppo and walked around to see of the Shine Festival Murals. You can see a few of our favorite walls below. There are so many more spread out throughout downtown St. Pete that I want to explore a little more next time I am over there. Also on our to-do list in St. Pete, Green Bench Brewing and The St. Pete Shuffleboard Club

Hyppo St. Pete

On Saturday, The Hyppo opened their first Tampa Bay area store over in St. Pete. Attempting to contain my excitement is near impossible; I've been waiting years for this! As if I don't already have my fair share of pops in St. Augustine, I am now just a short 35 minute drive to downtown St. Pete where I can eat all of the pops my little heart desires. I went over Sunday afternoon with my mom. Our pop choices were key lime pie and peanut butter pie, both dipped in chocolate. We decided we each needed a second pop before leaving. She tried the pistachio rosewater and  I picked the black pepper cantaloupe. 

If you're down in the area, run to Hyppo; they are at 627 Central Avenue! 


Last weekend marked St. Augustine's 450th birthday! We kicked off the tail end of the weekend with a walk uptown to Magnolia Avenue. Out of all my years visiting St. Augustine, Magnolia Avenue was something I still hadn't been to and it's just as beautiful as the pictures I've seen. After our walk, we met up with a few friends for a drink before heading home to make dinner. Ryan and I whipped up homemade veggie pizzas and climbed up onto the roof to people watch. I was pretty disappointed that I had missed the big firework show earlier in the weekend and Ryan just so happened to have a recorded version of it for us to watch as well.  We even celebrated the city's birthday with sparkler candles :)


The next morning we had breakfast at The Hyppo Cafe and more excitingly, had one of their amazing cookies for dessert. All of their cookies are delicious, but their chocolate chip is my absolute favorite. Earlier in the year they removed the cookies from their menu and after several months of a cookie hiatus, they decided to bring them back and I couldn't have been happier. One cookie paired with an ice cortadito was the best way to start the morning, in my opinion. 

That afternoon the city was a hosting a cake cutting in the square. It was scheduled to start at noon but was pushed back to later begin at 2pm. We ended up walking home after staying for a while to listen to the band entertain the crowd. 

Tuesday, the 8th, was the final day of celebrations for the city. I walked down to The Mission to see the reenactment of Don Pedro Menendez's landing in St. Augustine. "He" came in by boat and shortly after, all of the actors paraded through the crowd and made their way downtown to the Cathedral Basilica for a ceremonial mass. I followed the parade along downtown and watched as several dozen priests and city leaders led their way into the church. The mass was by invitation only so I made my way back to Ryan's after the parade. I couldn't go back without picking up a Hyppo pop; the 90 degree weather called for 5 Hyppo pops, but I refrained and just picked one. Spumoni with a white chocolate cap was the specialty flavor for the weekend. It was just as delicious as it looks and I picked up several more to bring home with me :)


Lazy Sunday

Sundays, in my opinion, are one of my favorite days of the week. When I'm not working at the store, I love to sleep in and try out new breakfast spots. This past Sunday, I was in St. Augustine and remembered that I had been wanting to try out Big Island Bowls. We headed over to the island and ordered up some delicious acai bowls and ran to eat them in the car, just as it started to pour down rain. Ryan had the acai mixed with apple juice, granola, blueberries, bananas, and pineapple while I had the acai bowl mixed with almond milk, granola, chia seeds, blueberries, strawberries, and coconut flakes. I've been craving another one since then! 

After breakfast we ran several errands around town to pick up some art supplies and groceries to make for dinner that evening. After all of our running around, it was time for lunch. All week we have both been craving Back 40 and when brainstorming ideas for lunch, it was the first place on both of our minds. Ryan stuck with his traditional Cuban sandwich and I tried a new to me salad, the shrimp curry salad with coconut curry buttermilk dressing. I've been thinking about how to whip up my own version at home because I practically licked the bowl clean. The dressing was easily the star of the show, it was that amazing. 

We stopped into The Hyppo, per usual, to see some of our favorite workers and I picked up my own dragon fruit ginger pop. Not pictured* Ryan's lemon plum pop that he ate before I could catch a photo ;) 

We made a fried rice for dinner and went downstairs to pick up Cousteau's for dessert. A Belafonte with vanilla ice cream hit the spot to end the day on a sweet note. In my opinion, lazy Sundays filled with the best food are kind of the greatest. 

Tiny Tourists

The last, and only time, I've ever toured the fort in St. Augustine was when I was 14 years old and in 8th grade. Our class took a trip up to St. Augustine for the day and the only thing I could remember was trying to squeeze as many classmates as possible into those tiny tower out coves for a picture that is probably still kept away somewhere amongst my teenage possessions. It's been a place I've been wanting to revisit, so Ryan and I decided to play tourist and make a morning of it. At that age, I didn't realize how special of a place St. Augustine truly is, and while walking through the fort, I was only reminded just how amazing the city really is. I couldn't begin to imagine what life was like during times when the fort was in use. I found myself shaking my head in disbelief during multiple parts of the tour. Imagine building that entire fort with your barehands, during Florida's excruciatingly hot and humid summers, while probably wearing week old clothes, AND probably without sufficient food and water supply....aka no Hyppo pops to cool them off from a working day. When visiting St. Augustine so often, I get caught up in forgetting to stop and appreciate all of the history the city has to offer. I'm glad we took the time to tour the fort that day, the morning is one of my favorite St. Augustine memories thus far. 

^^^ post fort I insisted we stop for pops to cool off from the heat. I had my favorite key lime and Ryan picked out the dragon fruit ginger. I'm telling you, I'm on a mission to try them all ;) 

A Day Exploring Gainesville

While visiting Ryan in St. Augustine, we had a free day with zero plans. We decided to fill up the day with a mini trip to Gainesville. Neither of us have spent much time in Gainesville in the past, and while it's a small town, there were definitely a few places that caught our interest to check out.  We hopped in the car and took our time making the hour and a half drive west. We stopped at Finders, Keepers in Palatka to see if they had any new items since we last visited in March. Parked right out front was the coolest VW bus, elaborately covered in dozens of stickers. Unfortunately, it wasn't for sale :'( it just belonged to another shopper. The only items that we purchased were a couple of letterpresses matchbooks that were hidden in a fishbowl in the back of the store.  

Stopping into Satchel's for lunch was a given, and we were sure glad we did. We braved the heat to once again sit outside in the VW bus. We ordered a small, yes that's a small, Satchel salad and a large cheese pie. We were completely stuffed at the end of our meal, but I made Ryan ask for a dessert menu anyways. They bring it out in the form of a viewfinder....ah-mazing. So then, of course, we ordered chocolate chip and peanut butter chocolate chip cookies to-go as snack for the drive back later that afternoon. 

After lunch, we decided to spend a few hours roaming the Florida Museum of Natural History. Although the Florida museum doesn't compare to the history museum in New York, my personal favorite, it was absolutely worth the trip to visit. The museum always has a permanent exhibit, which is free to the public, and they currently have two featured exhibits that you pay for separately. One exhibit is of Sue the T-Rex and the second is the butterfly garden. In 1990, paleontologist Sue Hendrickson discovered the largest and most complete T-Rex skeleton found to date. The fossil was eventually auctioned off to the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, where the fossil is still kept on display today. The fossil displayed at the Florida Museum of Natural History is just a replica, however the entire exhibit was really interesting and taught Ryan and I some fun facts we didn't previously know. My favorite were the displays that showed how dinosaurs have been depicted throughout pop culture over the last several decades. While scientists have a pretty thorough understanding as to how dinosaurs lived and survived, there's still so much left to speculation. The exhibit itself was educational and truly amazing when you think of all the possibilities and what imagine what life would be like if dinosaurs still roamed the earth today. If I ever had the chance, I would love to see the real fossil in Chicago. 

Ps- they had an entire wall in the exhibit dedicated to post-it notes listing what people thought about Sue. It was thoroughly entertaining to read through them all, especially ones written by children 5 and under. Ryan and I couldn't leave without posting our own jokes, seen below. 

Ryan and I will both agree when we say our favorite part of the museum was the butterfly exhibit. As we wrapped around the museum, from the Florida history section and into the butterfly exhibit, there were several museum employees working delicately to pin a variety of butterflies and beetles into shadow boxes. I've never had the opportunity to watch people pin the different butterfly varieties before, and it was beautiful and slightly gross all at the same time. I'm really not a fan of bugs in general, butterflies included, but they way they were displayed was an art form in and of itself. Some of the bugs were beautiful shades of blues and greens, while others were a bit terrifying and I am glad I've never come across the living versions. The museum had several shadow boxes on display; however, behind the workers in the laboratory were rows and rows of several hundred shadow boxes. If only we had the opportunity to look through them all, I am sure that's where the keep the most rare and delicate species. Following the butterflies and beetles on display, came the best part: the butterfly garden. You enter the garden and walk through a pathway that leads you through beautiful, lush plants and tropical flowers. As soon as you look up, you realize there are hundreds of butterflies, all shapes, colors and sizes, flying above you. Some land right next to you, but as soon as you blink, they are in flight and on to find the next plant to feed from. There were butterflies I had never seen before, neon green, red, and vibrant blues. In one summed up word, it was magical. Every time I looked in a different direction I would point out and exclaim a new butterfly that would flutter by, and how each one was "my favorite." They were all just too beautiful!  They had benches set up throughout the garden so viewers could sit and spend a fair amount of time observing. It was overwhelmingly peaceful in there and I instantly began to plot how to recreate the scene in my backyard. If you go to the museum, pay the extra seven or eight dollars to go into the garden, I promise you it's absolutely worth it. 

Before going back to St. Augustine we made a special trip over to one of the two Gainesville Hyppo locations. This one is my favorite Hyppo location out of all the shops they currently have. I mean, how could it not be your favorite with that amazing fruit wall?  This trip, I had the guava hibiscus pop and Ryan had the classic papaya pineapple pop. 

Orlando and Winter Park

Recently, Rifle Paper Co. hosted The Hyppo and Mama's Sauce for yet another awesome sidewalk sale. Once I found out Hyppo would be there, I planned a little overnight trip to meet Ryan in the Orlando/Winter Park area before the sale the next day. I ended up finding the cutest tiny modern house that was for rent on Airbnb and I knew it was perfect! We dropped our bags off at the house and headed out for a progressive dinner around town. First stop was The Strand for a beer and an order of the house made pretzels. They came out fresh from the oven with a side of a homemade pimento cheese that was delicious. Following pretzels, we went to Propagation coffee for a cappuccino and iced coffee with tonic water. Next up, we went to Winter Park Fish Co. for a lobster roll...only to find out it had been taken off of the menu! We chose the shrimp tacos and a crab roll instead, which wasn't quite the same, but it was still pretty delicious. Our last stop for dessert was Kelly's homemade ice cream, where Ryan had the Mexican hot chocolate and I had the cake batter with sprinkles. That evening, we were welcomed back to the house by the owners, Alex and Rosa. They were overwhelmingly kind and generous and we couldn't recommend their tiny house enough! 

The next morning, we woke up, packed our bags, and headed straight for Rifle Paper Co. We were greeted with popsicles, the best way to start the morning, and I jumped straight into stocking up on all the stationery and prints my little hands could hold. I was so excited to see she was offering her new planners at the sale as well, so I had to pick one up! 

After Rifle Paper, we were offered the chance to stop over into Mama's Sauce's studio for a little tour. It was so cool to see all of their amazing presses; to say Ryan was in heaven would be an understatement. Thanks Mama's Sauce! 

Lastly, we had lunch at Black Bean Deli. I think Ryan and I would both agree that this was our favorite restaurant of the trip. Not only was the interior beautiful, the atmosphere was bustling with a large lunch crowd, but the food was so much better than I could have hoped for. Ryan had a cuban and I had the vegetarian plate with plantains, a salad, cuban bread, and black beans with rice. It was heaven washed down with a Mexican Coke. 

We seriously had the best time exploring Orlando and Winter Park for twenty four hours. We scratched off a few places on our little adventure list, but with that, added several new places we want to try in the future as well. We will definitely be back to stay in that tiny house, and cannot wait to see when the owners finish their latest project: an airstream Airbnb! 

Summer Bucket List // Week Two Recap

Between starting two new jobs in the past couple of weeks, things have been extra busy these days. I had the day off on Sunday, so Saturday evening after work I drove straight up to St. Augustine. I had to be at work early Monday morning and could only spend a little less than 24 hours in town, but it was so worth it.

Upon my arrival, we jetted into downtown to pick up a to-go order of shrimp tacos from Catch 27. We took them back to Ryan's so we could have a taco picnic in the fort tent he made for us. A few of the pictures may be blurry, but I still love them. Summer bucket list activity number eight: check!  

Sunday morning, we decided to walk over the Bridge of Lions into downtown for coffee and breakfast. We first made a coffee run into The Kookaburra for two iced cortados. Afterwards, we strolled to breakfast at The Blue Hen. One two egg special and chicken biscuits galore. It's been forever since I've picked up a copy of the Sunday funnies. I'll always love the Peanuts strip, and you can't go wrong with the few cheesy jokes at the end of the section. This week's joke was, "Why should you knock before opening the fridge?" Why you ask? "In case there's AnItalian dressing!" So cheesy, so silly, I love it and I hope it makes you laugh as well :)

The Hyppo celebrated it's fifth birthday this weekend! Happy Birthday Hyppo, I'm so glad you were born!! We joined in on the festivities with a cucumber lemon mint pop and a pineapple ginger pop. 

Once we walked back home we watched a little Netflix and then headed out to adventure on the bikes. We cruised through the neighborhood and out to A1A in search of an afternoon snack. We ended up down the street to test out Nalu's Tropical Take-Out and Miss Mary's shaved ice. Ryan had a baja shrimp taco and I chose the St. Augustine pier right fish taco. They were both absolutely delicious and you could tell the fish and shrimp were freshly caught. I loved my fish taco, but I think Ryan's shrimp taco won for the better of the two. 

 I believe that it is safe to say that we may have found one of our new favorite places in St. Augustine. Miss Mary's shaved ice, I love you. Not only was Miss Mary incredibly entertaining, her snow cones were just as delicious as I could have imagined. With hundreds of different flavor and topping combinations, it was so difficult to choose! I tried the mango and Ryan had a pineapple shaved ice; we each tried the marshmallow fluff on top. Once again, Ryan's was probably the better of the two, but they definitely hit the spot. The start of crossing off summer bucket list activity number six: check! 

And another St. Augustine trip in the books! Here's to many more summer days filled with bike rides, fort tents, tacos, and snow cones a plenty! 

The Weekend // 5.15.15

I had a weekend free of dogsitting and babysitting this past weekend, so I hopped into the car and headed up to St. Augustine for a couple of days. I arrived late Thursday evening, so come Friday morning, Ryan and I woke up early to head out and cross some activities off of our "favorites" list. First up, we drove down U.S. 1 to Out There Antiques and Graybeards Antiques. It took a while to sift through everything, and we ended up leaving with a few treasures. I found a few little antique glass bottles for little bouquets of flowers and a vintage Tampa postcard. Ryan found a variety of items from comic books to letterpress drawers and printing blocks. He ended up purchasing an old safety razor, so we each had a successful trip!

It's been several months since we have eaten at The Floridian. Our go-to is the fried green tomato hoagie...I'm getting hungry just thinking about it now. We've made our own version at home before, which was delicious, but there's just something you can't quite duplicate about The Floridan's. I've tried a few other menu items before, such as the veggie burger, and everything I have had is just as delectable. 

Post hoagies, we learned that it was National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day. I have a bit of a sweet tooth and could easily eat an entire tray, or seven, of chocolate chip cookies. They are my absolute favorites, as are most cookies, and I've kept note of the best ones I've ever had. Note to self- Levain Bakery in NYC still has the best chocolate chip cookie, hands down. One of my top favorites was the cookie that they used to bake and serve at The Hyppo Cafe. They recently did away with them a few months ago (why Hyppo, why?!?!) and St. Augustine will never be the same without them...RIP.  Since The Hyppo no longer makes them, I figured the next best thing would be a cookie dough milkshake from Cousteau's

Later that evening, we stopped by the opening reception for the Flagler Art & Design Alumni Exhibit.  Ryan had a piece of work that was chosen for the exhibit and it was so exciting to see his work on display. I'm proud of you Ryan! Now if only I could draw a decent stick figure...

Saturday was another early morning as we wanted to beat the breakfast crowd at The Blue Hen. Corned beef hash and scrambled eggs for Ryan, two eggs and sweet potato home fries for myself. Let me just stop and make a special note about their biscuits as well. I have no clue what they do to make them so addicting, but I am convinced it's magic. Plus, I need the recipe for their peach butter asap. I find myself craving it in Tampa all. the. time. 

The cute little guy below is one of my favorite houses in St. Augustine. He reminds me of the house from UP. Just add a few thousand balloons and I'll be sailing away to Paradise Falls. I'll send you a postcard when I get there! 

We strolled around downtown a bit more stopping into some of the antique shops and galleries at The Lightner Museum. Of course, we had more popsicles at The Hyppo, raspberry and blueberry rose, before heading home to whip up some frozen pierogies we had picked up at Gaufre's and Goods

I had planned to stay until Tuesday morning, but Saturday night I was in a fender bender on the way to pick up dinner. It ended up cutting the trip short, and I had to bring my car back to Tampa Sunday afternoon. My little bug and I are okay; he's at the shop being fixed as we speak. Although the weekend ended abruptly, and not on the best of notes, we made the most of the weekend and the situation at hand! 

Thanks for having me and for more little fun adventures, Ryan! 

Pizza, Pierogies, and Preacher Lawson

I spent a few more days last week cruising around St. Augustine with Ryan. We spent time  stopping into our favorite local spots and adventured out to a few new places as well. On my first day in town, we hopped on Ryan's new (but vintage) bikes and rode up to one of the antique shops, Anastasia Antique Center.  After, we headed into downtown for dinner and dessert before the monthly comedy night at the Corazon Cinema. All of the comedians were really funny and it made for such an entertaining night. My favorite was Preacher Lawson, definitely check out his YouTube videos!  It's been one week since we saw his act and I am still laughing over his jokes. 

On our bike ride home we ran into this little guy. I really have a love for all types of VWs, especially buses...as you can see here

Ryan and I have been attempting to go to Gaufre's and Goods for about a month and a half now. Each time we try and go it's always closed. This trip, we made sure it was on our "must" list and we headed there for lunch one afternoon. They have a variety of Greek and Polish dishes that all looked, and smelled, amazing. We ordered three of each type of pierogi: spinach, potato and cheese, sauerkraut and mushroom, and meat...extra sautéed onions too, of course. Ryan had never tried pierogis before and I think it's now safe to say he loves them almost as much as I do. 

 We ventured up to  the Jacksonville Farmer's Market to pick up a few different fruits and vegetables for dinner that evening. Everything looked amazing and if you know the vendors, they will make you a great deal if you are purchasing a few different items. 

We tried the cocos frios, which I had never had before! 

After drinking all of the coconut water, they split the coconut open and sprinkle chili powder on top to scoop and eat. 

My pineapple before. 

My pineapple after. 

Raspberry lemonade & rosy pear pops from The Hyppo before heading into the studio so Ryan could work on printing business cards all afternoon. 

My last night in town happened to fall on a Thursday, so bingo at the Elk's Lodge was a must. Ryan's friends Nick and Mary Kate joined us. It was both of their first times playing in St. Augustine and Mary Kate was definitely struck with beginners luck; she won the $250 coverall game! Right before Mary Kate won the coverall game, I won one of the $50 games! I couldn't believe we had both won back to back. We all were in shock and couldn't stop laughing. Needless to say, I think they'll come play bingo with us more often! I ended up "donating" the $50 dollars to our "little fun adventure" jar that we just started. Maybe if we play and win enough bingo games, it'll eventually pay for a trip to Europe :) 

St. Augustine Days

I took a few days last week to head back to St. Augustine and wanted to share a few photos of some things Ryan and I were up to. On my first night in town, we drove up to Jacksonville to have dinner at Whataburger. Ryan had been telling me about a secret menu item called the, "brown burger," that replaces a regular burger patty with hash browns. Funny enough, when I ordered so called, "brown burger," the manager looked horrified because had no clue what I was talking about. After explaining it a bit more, he graciously said he would try making it for me anyways. I was beginning to believe this was a trick Ryan had played on me to order an item that has never existed, however, according to the internet (my incredibly valuable resource) the brown burger does exist! The very sweet manager did a wonderful job making it for me and I will definitely be back to order another one next time we drive up there. 

The next day, Ryan and I spent the morning running a few errands before meeting up to hang out with our new friend, Calli. We ate waffles at Cousteau's, popsicles at Hyppo, shopped around Uptown and stopped into Ice Plant for pretzels and cocktails before calling it an early evening. Calli snapped a few photos of Ryan and I at Cousteau's; we're pretty silly. 

We stopped into Jenna Alexander's shop to check out some of her work. I am so in love with her Stripes and Buns collection (on the right) and wanted to take the entire gallery wall home with me. 

Declaration also recently reopened their new space called Declaration & Co: The Market Place. My best friend, Britni, used to intern for them when we were in college. It's been a lot of fun to see just how much they have grown over the past five years. On one side of the shop they sell a variety of home goods, gifts, clothing and their own line of stationery and textiles. On the other side of the shop is Mr. George's Candy Corner which pays homage to the building's original use as a candy and tobacco shop. 

We quickly popped into the Yield shop and studio so Calli could take a look around and see where Ryan keeps his letterpress for M.C. Pressure

More Hyppo pops were consumed...I can't stop and won't stop until I try all 450 flavors. This time, we had pistachio coconut and papaya pineapple. 

Treasure hunting at its finest. 


And of course, no trip to St. Augustine would be complete without an order of shrimp tacos from Catch 27. If given the chance, I'm fairly certain I would eat them every single day. 

See you again soon, St. Augustine! 

Birthday Happenings

A few weeks ago I celebrated my 25th birthday with family, wonderful friends, little adventures, and lots of delicious food. On the morning of my birthday, I packed up the car and headed to meet Ryan in Gainesville to test out Satchel's Pizza. Neither of us had ever been before, but after discovering this eclectic pizza joint via social media, I knew we had to go. We arrived at lunch time and we were seated inside the restaurant's vintage blue VW bus (I think I died and went to Heaven.) We ordered a large cheese and pineapple pizza annnd it was so delicious I think we could have ordered another one!! Post pizza, we made our way downtown to visit one of Gainesville's Hyppo Pop locations. We met up with one of Ryan's friends and enjoyed our pops while walking through the downtown area.

Mid-afternoon, we headed back to St. Augustine and made a pit stop at a little antique store called Finders Keepers in Palatka. They had lots of unique little treasures such as old type writers, sewing machines, and eclectic kitchen accessories. The only thing that I purchased was a tiny binocular brooch that reminded me of Suzy from Moonrise Kingdom. It was a dollar and I would have been silly to not pick it up!

One of the activities on our St. Augustine bucket list has been to go play bingo at the Elks Lodge in town. Since my birthday fell on a Thursday, we decided it was the perfect opportunity to test it out. Little did we know just how intense bingo could actually be! We walked in and were a little overwhelmed at the site we saw: lots of cute elderly people, piles of good luck trinkets and too many bingo cards to even wrap my head around. Each game was color coded and played by a different set of rules. Thankfully, the two ladies next to us were gracious enough to explain all of the bingo terms such as small kite, X, T, four corners, stamps, and so many more. They filled us in on all of the "official and unofficial rules." Unofficial meaning that there were several social rules set in place by avid bingo goers. If you broke those rules, you instantly received dirty looks and silent head shakes of disapproval. Despite bringing my good luck penguin and miniature VW bus, neither of us won, Ryan was pretty close several times though! Although we walked away with empty holes in our pockets, we had the best time and will definitely be back! 

Later that weekend, I headed back to Tampa to partake in a few more festivities with my family. Saturday, Michael and I took our hot air balloon ride that I posted about earlier this week.  Sunday afternoon, my mom and I went to Oxford Exchange for a cup of tea before a matinee movie. Tampa Theatre is currently running a family fun series which plays a different movie each Sunday for the next month and a half. The opener for the family series was Matilda, one of my personal favorites! Tampa Theatre is one of the most special places in town and if you've never been, add it to your list immediately! The theatre is incredibly beautiful and has even been listed as one of the top fifteen most spectacular movie theaters in the world. If you go, make sure you arrive early to experience the pre-show organ concert. Also, if you attend one of the family fun movies, keep your ticket stub and take it to Duckweed Urban Market, post show, for a free Whatever Pop popsicle! That evening, we met up with my grandparents at Cappy's Pizza in Seminole Heights for dinner. In my opinion, they have the best pizza and greek salad in town. Plus, they have the sweetest workers you'll ever come across! 

We headed back to our house after dinner to cap off the weekend with several XL slices of birthday cake. The entire weekend was such a wonderful way to kick off the start of my 25th year. More so than all of the fun activities, I feel incredibly thankful to be surrounded by such magnificent people in my life. It's my family, friends, and the memories that we create together that make the passing of each year that much more special. I am the luckiest.