One Day in New Orleans

In August, we traveled to New Orleans a few days before Labor Day to kick off a fun-filled weekend trip. The main reason for our trip was to go to the Georgia Southern vs. LSU game in Baton Rouge on Saturday, so we added a stop in NOLA and Biloxi to explore and spend some time with friends.

We flew into Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport Thursday evening and took a Lyft {links with your Delta Skymiles for extra miles, guys!} to our hotel Le Méridien New Orleans. This was a beautiful place to stay in the heart of the Central Business District which is a lot quieter and cleaner than the French Quarter. Literally across the street from Harrah's if that's your thing, and less than a mile walk to the Quarter where you can begin to explore. The hotel has a really fun and eclectic vibe and we greatly enjoyed our stay there.

After dropping off our bags, we began to look for somewhere to go to dinner which proved more challenging at 9 p.m. in New Orleans than I had anticipated. We took off to see what was nearby and ended up at The Halal Guys which, while a chain, was absolutely amazing. I love a good gyro and this one was great--try the ghost pepper sauce, but a drop is a lot! After working all day and traveling that evening, we were tired and headed back to our room right after dinner in preparation for a long day on Friday.

Friday morning started off with the scrumptious breakfast from Bittersweet Confections. Found on picture perfect Magazine Street, we enjoyed a breakfast croissant, prosciutto, ricotta, and honey drizzled toast, a Nutella and white chocolate muffin and iced coffee before catching the free bus to Mardi Gras World. Truly a tourist destination, we were able to see from start to finish how the magnificent Mardi Gras floats are made while learning a little bit more of the history of the festival season. It was absolutely mesmerizing, and a super fun stop for all ages!

Thankfully, MGW has a free shuttle with lots of stops all over the city, so we hopped on the French Quarter shuttle and got to exploring. It ended up being a beautiful and surprisingly cooler August day, so we walked over eight miles throughout the city exploring. We took a lap around Jackson Square, admiring the architecture and the artists, before grabbing our first of many daiquiris at Willie's Chicken Shack. I'd planned on having a muffaletta lunch at Napoleon House but we were still really full from breakfast.

At 1 p.m. we joined the guided tour at the New Orleans Pharmacy Museum. The site of the first retail pharmacy, we were able to see and learn about old instruments, medicines, practices and beliefs from the 1800s. The pharmacist hubs was highly entertained. Once the tour wrapped up, we wandered for a while before heading to Pat O'Brien's for a famous hurricane at the piano bar. Going to a dueling pianos event is always fun, and it was a great place to cool off for an hour or so before a brief trip down Bourbon Street. Never my favorite place {wear closed toed shoes!}, it's still fun to people watch and try a new beverage or two.

After a nap back at the hotel and freshening up, we stood in line at Acme Oyster House for about 30 minutes before snagging two seats at the bar. Of course we had a dozen raw oysters, a po-boy and seafood etouffee--I even tried an oyster shooter. It was all super delicious and worth the wait! I had my heart set on taking a spin around the Carousel Bar with a French 75 in hand, and unfortunately I couldn't get a seat. We did however get a drink at the bar {which is actually a slowly spinning carousel!} and a couple of chairs in a cozy corner and were able to enjoy a fantastic jazz band after dinner! It was a ton of fun.

To top off the day, we of course had to swing by Cafe du Monde for an order of beignets before heading back to our hotel room to rest up before game day. I had hoped to go to the Ruby Slipper Cafe for brunch on Saturday, but we didn't get going early enough and ended up with a "recovery" meal of Raisin' Canes.

What are some of your favorite New Orleans stops?

You can shop my exploring outfit directly from the image below!

Farmhouse Glam Paint Colors | Sherwin Williams

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen a sneak peek or two of the progress of our living room re-do. You may have also seen the utter disaster the rest of our downstairs is as we have been working in this room which literally takes up half of our main floor. So far we've painted the walls, ceiling and half the trim in the living room. We hope to finish the trim and start and finish the dining room this weekend, before tackling the kitchen.

I've found that I really like painting! When I'm working on a section, it's literally all I can think about. It can be a little hard for me to turn my brain off from time to time, but this task allows me to just zone out of everything else and focus on the literal task at hand.

I'm calling our look farmhouse glam for two reasons: 1. Our home has a bit of a farmhouse-y vibe to it. White, front porch, soon to be installed black metal roof, big yard with a fence, etc. But I'm not 100% committed to the Jo Anna Gaines farmhouse look, especially through the whole house. And CJM likes some color throughout as well. 2. I need just a little bit of glam and sparkle in my life, which we're incorporating through the gold metal accents, some soft pink velvet pillows, and faux fur throws/rugs. So #farmhouseglam it is!

I found a color scheme on Pinterest that was under the farmhouse glam kind of category and we both really liked it. Once we decided on the right gray for our home {Repose Gray}, we re-evaluated the suggested colors and decided it was a little too mix-y match-y for us, as well as being a little too warm. We like a bit of a cooler, cleaner color scheme. So we swapped out the navy for the Iron Ore color of our accents {it's not black, but a super dark charcoal color} and the mantle and banisters have just totally popped!

When CJM suggested painting the kitchen pink, I was honestly so surprised. But we have white cabinets that we have no plans to change, and have wanted to update the counter tops and tile to a white/marble-y look for a long time so it just seemed to make sense! We have a long ways to go, but working on these projects have been fun! I'll share more as we progress, but wanted to kind of document the process from start to finish, and this is the suggested paint scheme as of right now.

Be sure to follow me on Instagram to get even more behind the scenes!

Cozumel Photo Shoot with Mik 'n Drik Photography

When we were on our cruise in May, we made a stop in Cozumel, Mexico. We had been there before and it was something that attracted us to the 2019 itinerary. I love exploring the little island that is full of fun and life. I knew I wanted to try and find a photographer at one of our stops to take some professional pictures of us since we haven't had any officially taken since our wedding. I'm so glad that I found Mik 'n Drik Photography in Cozumel! Oleksandr & Nadine were the sweetest couple to work with. They picked us up right outside the cruise ship terminal and drove us all over the island to some beautiful spots that we could have never found ourselves. They were really easy to talk to and answered our many questions about island life and the cruise industry.

We love the photos they took, and I wanted to share a few here! We're saving some for our Christmas card which I've already designed {Christmas in July I guess!}, but here's a little sneak peek! If you're ever in Cozumel and in need of photographers, definitely reach out to this duo: Mik 'n Drik.

My Lilly Pulitzer is an old pattern from a sale a few years ago, but you can shop the short and long version of my sequin dress below!