Friday, August 30, 2013

Friday Five 8/30

To be honest, I didn't even know it was Friday. I guess I am in vacation mode. This week has been great, but we actually haven't done a lot. We have been running errands, shopping, hanging out with friends, and spending time with each other. Jake and I have actually spent a lot of time doing nothing. We have slept in, laid in bed, and watched netflix. Jake never gets to sleep in or lay around all day, so he has enjoyed having a break. I have even been slacking on bikram yoga, unfortunately. But we have been enjoying our time together. Even though we didn't do anything too exciting, I have been able to cross lots of things off of my to-do list, which makes for a successful week in my book. Time before our move is running out, but I feel like we will be prepared as we can be. 

Sorry for my lack of pictures, but as I said, we didn't do much this week that required picture documentation.

ONE I did lay out some this week. Like I needed any sun. but I like the relaxation. I feel like a lizard, sometimes, since I like to warm myself in the sun. I've decided my dog might like to lay our more than me. She even likes to lay on lounge chairs. You think she wouldn't like it, since she has so much fur. Sometimes I have to make her come inside, sometimes after hours of laying out in the sun. Is this normal doggie behavior? 

TWO I haven't been very good at eating clean this week. I am all about enjoying food and having a "cheat" day here and there, but I have had a whole cheat week. I found this recipe for Grilled Zucchini Nachos for Two Peas and Their Pod and I can't wait to try it! You can't go wrong with nachos, so I was so excited to find a healthier option. And let's be honest, if there is avocado in the recipe, I am on board. 

THREE We are learning more about how everything will work once we arrive to Okinawa. We have a place to stay when we arrive and we will soon have a mailbox. We have a sponsor over there who is helping us prepare and will help us get settled on the island. We were informed that housing on base is 100% full. While there are many advantages to living on base, I have kind of wanted to live off base to get the whole experience. I have started to look into places to live off base and I think I can handle it.

These particular places are a bit over our budget, but I have still found some great options. I know it is going to be a huge adjustment, especially now since we will most likely be living in the Japanese population instead of in the on base American population, but I am still beyond excited! The house hunting journey will be extensive and stressful I am sure, but I am so ready to get settled in!

FOUR Football season is here!! I love this time of year. We are definitely football people. We tailgate on Saturdays and watch NFL with snacks and cheering at home on Sundays. You will find us cheering for the UK Wildcats and the Dallas Cowboys. It is going to be a challenge watching any of the games in Okinawa, but I am sure Jake will figure it out somehow. Luckily, we will be in town for one UK game. We may even be good this year with the new coach. A girl can dream, right?

FIVE Speaking of UK, I loved this article about the 41 Signs You Went to the University of Kentucky. Some of them are so true it's ridiculous. I was on campus the day before school started to pick something up and I couldn't believe I won't be going back this year. I loved my time at UK and would go back in a heartbeat! 

Who else is excited for football season?? 

Until Next Time,

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Best Places in Charleston, SC

Y'all are probably sick of me talking about how amazing Charleston is. Sorry, not sorry. It is seriously the most perfect city. It is a perfect blend of beach, southern, history, culture, and adventure. If you ever get a chance to visit, do it! You will NOT be disappointed.

After spending lots of time in Charleston, I have quite a few favorite places and things to do that I figured I would share. 


Mosiac Cafe, Mt. Pleasant- Fresh food and great atmosphere. There are tons of healthy options that do not compromise flavor. It is very affordable as well. I like the MMC Salmon, which is only $10.99. It is hard to find a beautifully cooked piece of salmon for under $15.

Cafe Medley, Sullivan's Island- I usually go here for breakfast. Their veggie sausage breakfast sandwich hits the spot. They serve coffee, salads, sandwiches, pastries, and even wine. It is the cutest little atmosphere and a perfect place to sit with your dog on the patio and eat breakfast. 

Poe's Tavern, Sullivan's Island- This place is always packed. Get the cheese fries. You won't be sorry.

Red's, Shem Creek- This place is best for the atmosphere. The views are great and it's the perfect place to catch the sunset. You can sit and watch as shrimp boats, motor boats, paddle boards, and dolphins come down the creek from the ocean. There is a huge outside bar on the main patio and then an upper level with tables and another bar. The food is just as great as the atmosphere. You have to try the bourbon barbecue bacon wrapped scallops. 

Taco Boy, Downtown and Folly Beach- This place is super cool and has the best tacos. Jake insists on going every time he's in town. 

Verde, Downtown- This is a build your own salad place on King Street. This is a place to go if you want something healthy and fast. You pick your lettuce and then your toppings. It is very well priced as well. I just recently discovered it and am kind of obsessed. 

Cru, Downtown- This is a cute little place in an old house. This place is great if you want something different and interesting with a Southern flair.

Magnolias, Downtown- I will be honest, I haven't tried very many of the more expensive restaurants downtown. I hear there are some excellent ones, though. I did try Magnolias and it was worth it. It is southern food with a southern atmosphere. 

Of course, there are many other amazing restaurants, these are just some of my favorites. 

Things to do:

A day at the beach on Sullivan's Island- Sullivans is my favorite beach in the area. It is less touristy and very pretty. You can also walk down to main street to some amazing restaurants. Isle of Palms is more touristy and has those typical beach shops. It does have more waves, though, if that's what you are looking for. 

Watch the sunset at Fort Moultrie- Fort Moultrie is at the end of Sullivan's Island, facing Fort Sumter. It is cool to see all of the cannons and you can even go in the fort. This is the best spot to watch the sunset. 

Paddle board or Kayak on Shem Creek- My first kayaking experience here wasn't the best. But it is such a beautiful area that it makes it a good place to do both of these activities. 

Carriage Tour Downtown- Yes, it is a very touristy thing to do. I learned so much about the city that it made it so worth it. You get to see historical homes and sites and hear interesting stories. This is a must when you visit! Go to the Red Barn for your tour.

Roof topping(is that a word) downtown- I love rooftops and downtown Charleston has some great ones. I really like The Rooftop at Vendue Inn. It over looks the city and the water. The Pavilion Bar is right in front of the Customs House and overlooks Market Street. It has a beautiful pool with fountains that make the atmosphere great. 

Visit Market Street- Market Street is, well a street, that has tons of tables set up with people selling their goods. Most likely you will find seagrass baskets, jewelry, paintings, and much more.

Eat lowcountry staples- Have Shrimp and Grits and Lowcountry boil at least one time

Take a walk- walk the bridge, walk the boardwalk at Shem Creek, or walk the fishing pier at Folly Beach

Shop King Street- King Street downtown has some amazing shops. It has all of the upscale places like Louis Vuitton and Kate Spade, all of the midrange stores like J.Crew and Banana Republic, some good bargain stores like Forever 21, and some super cute boutiques. King Street has a little bit for everyone. 

Take part in History- visit Fort Sumter, Boone Hall Plantation, Patriots Point, Edmondston-Aiston House, The Battery, or The Old Exchange. Wander around the cobblestone streets and read the signs of all of the historic significance in the city. 

Until Next Time, 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Work Space Inspiration

Since I have been living a nomadic lifestlye for the past 3 months, I haven't been able to do much designing, decorating, or DIY. I am going NUTS! I can't even buy any house things since our stuff is currently sitting in crates in Japan and we can't take much else over there. This is a big deal since I actually like shopping for house stuff more than I like shopping for clothes! I walk through Homegoods and Tj Maxx and get on pinterest and feel such a need to decorate something and then get sad when I realize I can't. I can't wait until we are settled in again so I can unleash my urge to decorate. 

Until then, I will just pin ideas I have and stay far away from home decor shops. Lately I've been loving cute little home offices. I usually do my work in bed or on the couch, but I think it would be so nice to have a little work space to sit on the computer and to organize papers and junk. I am sure any office space we have in the near future will be small, but I have seen so many inspiring images of small workspaces I know I could make it work. 

You should go look at the rest of this cute apartment. It is GORGEOUS!

I just love how clean and fresh these workspaces are. I love all of the white with pops of color here and there. I think a workspace should be somewhere you enjoy and want to be. It should feel comfortable and organized and reflect who you are. 

When I saw this last little office space, I fell in love with the brass lamp. I have done some research and have found that these little brass things are quite expensive. That doesn't stop me of dreaming of my perfect little work space with my perfect little brass lamp. 

This West Elm one is more doable at $99, but just not as pretty

What kind of work space do you dream of? Do you have one item you drool over? Do you love brass task lamps as much as I do?

Until Next Time,

Gator Wranglin' + Weekend

Wow! What a weekend! Jake and I are officially on vacation for 2 and a half weeks (ok so what if I have basically been on vacation all summer). Friday we said goodbye to Charleston and continued our saying goodbye journey up to Kentucky. Of course we couldn't leave SC without a bang.

Last week I posted about the alligator that has been stalking our backyard. Y'all, I did not exaggerate one bit. My mom called the homeowner's association, who then called the Gator Getters. The Gator Getters came out to do some tests to see if the alligator was a problem. The guy showed up at around 10 in the morning and the gator was of course hanging out right by our backyard. The guy knew right away the this gator was a problem. He should not be hanging out in that particular spot during the day and he should move away when humans get close. The guy knew that this gator was a danger to the neighborhood. He immediately started the process to get him out. Luckily for you, I caught it all on camera. 

The guy did a great job getting him out and even told us all about alligators. He told us that this gator had lost his fear of humans and that makes him very dangerous. I even got to pet the gator before he was hauled away. It was actually kind of sad to see the alligator go, especially since they had to kill him due to the circumstances. But, as my mom puts it, it was either the dog or the gator and we of course chose the dogs. I just can't believe we saw a gator being wrangled in our own backyard!

The rest of the day we spent getting our stuff together and then headed to the pool. That night we went to dinner and then the Hootie and the Blowfish concert on Daniels Island. Hootie and the Blowfish are from Charleston and do a concert series every year. Tons of people come out and it is a huge event. It was an absolute blast and they put on a great show! The only disappointment was that Darius did not sing Wagon Wheel. 

Saturday morning we loaded up the truck, said a very sad goodbye to my wonderful parents, and road tripped it 8 hours to KY. It was no fun saying goodbye to my parents who had been so gracious and wonderful to let me stay with them and entertain me all summer. We were so excited to get to Lexington, though, to see all of our friends and family. 

As soon as we got to Lexington, Jake's mom had a wonderful cookout prepared for us. That evening, my friend Amber came to town to see me. We headed down to a block party downtown to meet up with some friends. 

Back in Wildcat Country

What a fun night! The next day we went to our favorite breakfast place and then stopped by the Starbucks that we worked at in college. It is so weird to think how much has happened in my life since college but it is always fun to take a trip down memory lane. Later that day we headed up to Louisville for our friend Sam's bridal shower. It was great to see more friends I hadn't seen in awhile. The shower was super cute and the food was great! Unfortunately, it was the last time I will see some of these girls before our big move. 

What a fabulous weekend of fun, friends, and food! We are so excited for our next two weeks in KY and hope we can see as many of our friends as possible!  

Today I also thought I would link up with The Nectar Collective for Weekly Wishes. I have tons of wishes for this week and Melyssa lives in Japan. How cool!

My wishes for the week

To visit a few of my favorite places in town- since we haven't lived in KY since December and are not going to be back for awhile, I want to take advantage of visiting my favorite places. 

To make the most of our time in the USA- we only have a short time left here and I want to make every second count. Since we are on vacation, it will be hard to not lounge around and do nothing. I want to make sure I am out seeing people and things before we are on our way to Japan. 

To finish the last few things we need to do before we leave- I want to finish most of the things on our "to do before we leave" list so that most of the stressful stuff will be taken care of and we can enjoy our time with friends and family. There are so many teeny tiny details that go into a move and so it is so hard to get everything done. 

It is so nice to be able to put my wishes out there so I can make more of an effort that make them happen. This blogging thing gets better and better every day.

Until next time,

Sami's Shenanigans
The Nectar Collective

Friday, August 23, 2013

High Five For Friday 8/23

Friday again! Today I am linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for High Five for Friday. Friday's are always great, but today is very bittersweet. It is my last day in Charleston and tomorrow I have to say goodbye to my parents as we prepare for our move to Okinawa. Here are 5 highlights of my last week in Charleston.

1. Jake graduated from MOS school! He is now official! So proud of you Jake! Sorry for the picture quality. I told Jake to take some pictures and this is what I got. 

Jake and his roommate. See you in Oki Kev!

Jake celebrated by doing some backyard fishing. Yes, the alligator stalked him the entire time. 

2. Jake and I are reunited after 3 months! I was very lucky to be able to see him almost every weekend, but it will be nice to actually live in the same state and same house again. We are so excited to be back together, but it does take some adjustment. We are used to having a whole bed to ourselves. 

3. We had a graduation celebration for Jake and a goodbye Charleston dinner with Lowcountry boil and cheesecake.

4. We went to our favorite place, Taco Boy, downtown for lunch. We drove around downtown for a bit to say goodbye. 

5. We headed to the beach with the dog early this morning for a walk. Lexie loves running at the beach and playing in the water. It was a beautiful morning, even if we did get attacked by an angry mob of mosquitos. We went to Cafe Medley on Sullivan's Island afterwards. 

Today we are finishing packing, laying by the pool, and then going to the Hootie and the Blowfish concert with my parents. Tomorrow morning we will hop in the car and drive 8 hours to Kentucky to spend some time with our friends and family. I have really enjoyed my summer with my parents in Charleston. It will be so hard to say goodbye, but we are so ready to get to Okinawa!

Until next time,

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