Wednesdays With Walt: ZTA does Disney

Two of my favorite things in one place; my sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha and Disney. Oh be still my heart. I can’t help but do a little happy dance. IMG_0829.JPG

It’s a Way Back Wednesday with Walt- join me as I reminisce on my latest Walt Disney World trip with two of my ZTA Sisters during our National Conference in Orlando this July. IMG_0991.JPG

The three of us girls were like kids in a candy store as we arrived at the Magic Kingdom for the Rope Drop and our day at the Happiest Place On Earth. It had been years for both AM and EB since they had last been to Magic Kingdom. The girls used their favorite Key To The World Travel Planner for their One-Day Base Park Ticket and at our 30 day countdown mark I had our Fast Passes booked for three of the park’s busiest rides: Peter Pan’s Flight, Space Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.

On our todo list? EVERYTHING, but first we were off to get Mickey Ears and meet the main mouse himself! PicTapGo-Image-8.jpg

We rode almost every ride in Magic Kingdom and sampled (almost) every Instagramable snack. Dole Whips, check! Hey, it’s fruit! It makes a for a healthy Disney Breakfast, right? IMG_1031.JPG

A mid-afternoon Frozen Mickey, check! The perfect sweet treat to help you cool off while standing in line at Haunted Mansion. IMG_2364.JPG

It wouldn’t be a TOY STORY LAND Grand Opening celebration without Toy Story Cookie-dough Pops before boarding our rocket ship and taking off with Buzz to fight the evil Emperor Zurg! IMG_0854.JPG

I am sure you know, Orlando is brutally hot in July. To help us break up the day and refresh a bit, since we were “rope dropping and never stopping,” I got us lunch reservations at Jungle Navigation Skipper Canteen. It is a must for a long day at Magic Kingdom and my FAVORITE in the park restaurant. We shared the S.E.A. Shu Mai, Orinoco Ida’s Cachapas, Perkins Thai Noodles (my favorite- they are spicy), and Falls Family Falafel. We also tried, but is not pictured, “Tastes like Chicken” Because it is!

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Before we knew it, our day at the Magic Kingdom was quickly coming to an end. PicTapGo-Image-10.jpg

After lunch we took in a few more rides, danced to the Move-it-Shake-it Parade down Main Street U.S.A. and made sure to see the Happily Ever After Fireworks before making our way back to the Transportation and Ticket Center and head home.

See…even at 32 without kids Disney World can be a magical and I’d love to help you plan your vacation just like I did for AM and EB! Shoot us a message and I’ll be happy to get you on your way to the Happiest Place On Earth!

See You Real Soon!

We hope you’re enjoying your Newly Newlywed or Nearly Newlywed moments as much as we are!

Cheers Y’all!

Adam & Holly, but mostly Holly

PS: Remember, we’re newlyweds, not experts!

Tuesday Travels: Girls Trip!

Sorry @HeliHubby, but you’re not invited on this impromptu Girls Trip!

Two weeks ago I bought a plane ticket, packed my suitcase and decided to set sail with my best girlfriend and Sorority Sister on my first Royal Caribbean Cruise to Key West and Nassau!

Why you ask? Why not? Ann Marie was on Winter Break from school, Adam was on-call and would be working late every night, so the two of us decided to take a little long weekend “Mardi Gras” themed Girls Getaway!

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DIY Surprise: All the staples you’d need on a Cruise for our Mardi Gras themed getaway! 

Samson spent the week at his Tonna and Buddy’s. Adam was wife and puppy free! Don’t let him fool you! He was loving “his” time while I was sailing the seas!

We flew Delta from ATL to FLL and used Uber to get us to the Miami Port. It’s so much cheaper flying into Fort Lauderdale than Miami and the Uber ride was less than $40 each way. We got to port around 10am and only waited about 20 minutes before we could get on our ship, The Empress of the Seas.

When on vacation it’s always cocktail time! We wasted no time finding a spot on the ship  to sit and sip while we waited for our room. IMG_5737.jpeg

Obviously, our room was the cutest on the entire ship! Laissez les bons temps rouler y’all! We were ready to let the good times roll on this girls getaway!

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We spent the day checking out the ship. EOTS is the oldest in the Royal Caribbean fleet. It is a smaller boat, but was nice to get the lay of the sea quickly. The main areas have recently been updated, but the rooms were very outdated.  We waved Bon Voyage to Miami and like the old women we are, went to bed before 8! {Hey now, getting up at 3am for a flight and traveling all day will do that to you! Besides we couldn’t wait to see what towel animal we got!}

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Day 2:

We docked in Key West on schedule. We had breakfast at the main buffet full of all sorts of options- you could be healthy if you want or load up on all the pastries. They had someone making omelets to order and were more than willing to help make my meal as Whole30 Compliant as possible. Afterwards we hopped off the boat and went to do a little site seeing. We visited Mallory Square to see the Kissing Couple and The Southern Most Point in the US. {Everything in Key West is the “Southern Most.” You’ll see it everywhere when you go.} IMG_5768.jpegIMG_5862.JPG

If you’ve not been to Key West before, Duval Street is the main street in town. It’s full of shopping, restaurants, night life, art galleries and touristy gimmicks like coconut water that I just had to have!

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Duval Street reminds me of New York City. It is the Street that doesn’t sleep! When you’re out and about shopping check out The Spice & Tea Exchange. It’s a franchise store, but each location has speciality teas and spices specific to their store. Since I starting getting into loose leaf teas in December, it has become a favorite store! This location has a Creme Brûlée tea you’ve got to try it! Oh-so good!

Everyone loves Kermit’s Key Lime Store. Pop in for a sample or a Key Lime Pie on a Stick! Everything in the store is made with Key Limes. They are proud of their products. There are a ton of touristy gift shops around town that sell similar items at a lower cost, just so you know! If you have time, pop into The Key West Rum Distillery. I was on a #Whole30 and didn’t do any sampling, but we did come home with a few surprises for the boys from here. They offer tours, tastings and all sorts of products. I will say the staff was not the friendliest, so be prepared! Just down from the Distillery is a great Lilly Pulitzer store and we all know how AM and I love our Lilly! Our favorite find {and where I did the most damage} in Key West was Antica Sartoria. Y’all this store is the cutest! We had the best customer service and such fun shopping in the store. They only have 4 locations and some of the most unique pieces. They are on the higher price end, but so worth it! You will not find another person with the same outfit as you! I got the most adorable *camo* top– LOVE! Holly in camo? Who would have thought?

After shopping and being tourists we headed back to the ship to work on our tan before sailing away to Nassau!IMG_5861.JPG

The Crew of Empress of the Seas is phenomenal. Yes or Yes? I know, I really don’t have another Cruise to compare it to, but in general compared to other hotels and experiences, they were great! Hugo, the Cruise Director, was full of life and personality. Always entertaining!

We did the My Time Dining and ended up having Milton and Wimbo as our servers in the main dining room. What a great team! They were so nice- my water glass was never empty and when we couldn’t decide which dessert we wanted to try, they brought them all to us! After supper we went to the nightly show before heading to bed for our big day in the Bahamas!

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Day 3:

We were at sea all day and arrived in Nassau that evening for a surprise overnight. All the crew that we spoke with suggested we stay on board the ship that night as Nassau can be a bit dangerous. If the boys were with us, we might have explored a bit, but since it was just us two we were just fie staying on the boat. Good call!

The nighttime entertainment was fantastic. Vegas Showman, Tony Tillman, is quite an entertainer! He came out in a sparkly suit and y’all the man sings, dances, tells jokes, he does it all! It is a show for all ages- even the kids. I’d go see him again! The second show was an adult comedian. He was hilarious! Definitely for the adult audience, but really funny! Both Adam and David would have liked him. Next time boys…

Day 4:

Nassau did not disappoint! We started the morning heading to the Queen’s Stairs in the Fort Fincastle Historic Complex in Nassau. Sixty-five stairs made of solid limestone rock around 1793 and provided a direct route from Fort Fincastle to Nassau City. It is free to visit the area and is a quick walk from the port. (We walked along side others from the ship and felt relatively safe. You walk through neighborhoods and passed a hospital to get there.) The Fort itself is very small, but has some of the best views of the city you will find. It was about $3/person. The area is surrounded by local vendors and “tour guides” that tell you about the Fort for a donation.

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We walked by the Straw Market, but did not do much shopping there. Everything was the same and haggling with the vendors is just not fun. We headed to the Duty Free shops instead! The main street off the port is full of Duty Free stores like David Yurman, Kate Spade, Gucci, you name it and they probably have it. AM and I took full advantage of our shopping opportunities! We were just saving the boys money!

Our trip flew by! We had such a good time! We had one last meal in the main dining area with Wimbo and Milton. They save the best for last- Lobster tails were on the menu and were oh-so delicious! The boys took care of us bringing us out an extra…or two and even cut it out of the shell for us! We even got a little Dining entertainment with a dance from the staff.

Just like that we awoke to the Port of Miami. Getting off the boat and going through customs was a breeze. No line. No wait. It was a great experience. Finding the Uber pick-up location was a bit chaotic, but overall not bad. I would do it again!

I am missing the sun and the ocean breeze, aren’t you? Such a great time with a great friend and the most perfect weather for a little weekend getaway! Can not say enough great things about the Ship’s Staff and the cruising experience. Guess it is time to book our next trip! Maybe the boys will be invited this time!

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Are you an avid cruiser? Share your tips and tricks with us! We are foodies and I have to say I was a little disappointed in the food…it was just ok. Tell us your favorite cruise lines and why- we want all the details y’all!

Signing off for now! Time to pack up and get ready for our next trip…DISNEY! Tune in next Tuesday for a little Disney fun!

We hope you’re enjoying your Newly Newlywed or Nearly Newlyed moments as much as we are!

Cheers!

Adam & Holly

PS: Remember, we’re Newlyweds, not experts!

Monday’s Menu: Blue Apron Delivery

“Yay! It’s here!”

I cheered with excitement as Adam and I returned home yesterday from lunch in the city with our friend and my sorority sister, Ann Marie. We both had anxiously been waiting for our Sunday delivery from Blue Apron and it had arrived!

On the Menu this week:

Bhindi Masala

Fresh Basil Fettuccine

Corn & Green Bean Empanadas

Tonight’s choice? Fresh Basil Fettuccine

Ingredients: 

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Recipe:

Wash the veggies. Fill a medium pot with water, season with salt and bring to a boil. Cut off the ends of the zucchini, quarter length wise and thinly cut crosswise. Peel the garlic and mince. (We have an awesome kitchen gadget that minces garlic- stay tuned for our Friday Favorite on that!) The original recipe says to cut the tomatoes in half, however, we quartered them.

In a large pan, heat 2 TSP of Olive Oil. Add the zucchini, garlic and crushed red pepper flakes (to taste) season with salt and pepper. Cook 2-3 minutes until slightly soften. Add tomatoes, season with salt and pepper and cook 3-4 minutes until soften. Remove from heat.

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While the tomatoes cook, add the pasta to the water. Cook 2-3 minutes until al dente. Drain. Reserve 1/2 cup of water.

Add the cook pasta, butter and half of the reserved water to the veggie mixture. Season with salt and pepper and cook on medium-high for 2 minutes. Stir and throughly combine.

Plate. Garnish with cheese and ENJOY!

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This meal was WONDERFUL! It made just enough for Adam and I to both have plenty and be comfortably full. Highly recommend trying to make it at home or order from Blue Apron yourself! We will definitely be making it again!

We hope you’re enjoying your Newly Newlywed or Nearly Newlywed moments as much as we are!

Cheers!

Adam & Holly

PS: Remember, we’re Newlyweds, not experts!

 

 

Our Story: I do….Me too!

Saturday, October 18th was a picture perfect day. There was a slight chill in the air and clear blue skies.

The girls got ready at a family friends house. Cute Anna Dobbs made us look beautiful with her make-up skills. Hair Stylist and family friend, Cherri King did my hair while the girls used some of their favorite local stylists. We hung out, watched football, shared stories with Michelle, a wedding story writer that was there to capture our day, snacked on Chick-fil-A Chicken Biscuits, and sipped on Mimosas.

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While we got ready for the BIG DAY, the guys helped Melissa and crew finish setting up the Hanger and got ready. Adam and I decided not to talk to each other or see each other prior to our ceremony, so I had no idea all that went on, before I walked down the isle. Instead of having a Unity Candle at our Ceremony, Adam and I chose to make a 1 Year Anniversary Box. We each wrote a letter to the other and sealed the box with a special bottle of wine. On our first anniversary we plan to share the wine, read the letters and remember all the memories and emotions we felt on our wedding day. Little did I know, giving Adam the duty to find the box for our ceremony meant sending our entire Bridal Party on a scavenger hunt throughout Peachtree City. Somehow the guys ended their hunt at Taco Mac to take in a little liquid courage before Adam had to say “I Do.”

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The wind was wild on our Wedding Day. I didn’t know at the time, but family friends were running to Home Depot to buy bags of sand to hold down our Alter and were tying down decorations. View More: http://tulleandgrace.pass.us/airport

Other than the wind, everything was perfect. We could not have asked for better timing for our ceremony, the Sunset was stunning. Our Bridal Party looked great. Dad and I kept it together as I walked down the isle to, “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri. I was so nervous about crying. The only thing I remember about that 2 minute walk was just watching Adam. He started to cry and I knew, if I looked away from him, saw our family and friends, I too would cry.   {I’m not the most emotional girl, but I’m tearing up as I write our story.}View More: http://tulleandgrace.pass.us/airport

Adam and I both did out best to keep it together and not cry! We did more of the awkward, nervous laugh apparently! I don’t remember a thing from those few short moments, but Pastor, Chris Patton, from North Point Ministries, keep us together and on track. We said traditional vows and with our “I Do’s” we were husband and wife!

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We surprised our guests and arrived at our reception in the same Helicopter Express Helicopter that Adam proposed in. Helicopter

We served Dicky’s BBQ (which is AMAZING by the way. Tasted great and they were the easiest vendor to work with! Call your local location rather than contacting corporate.) We said cheers to toasts from my Dad, Aunt Tina and the Best Man, Darin. Adam and his mom did their Mother/Son Dance and Dad and I followed with a dance to a collection of songs from the Twist to Gingham Style!

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Hailey Monette, from Cherry on Top Delights, designed both our traditional Wedding Cake and Michigan Stadium Groom’s Cake. (Hailey is amazing. Makes the most creative, tastiest treats and delivers!) We danced the night away to tunes from the Band, The Remedies– best choice we could have made. {Yes Adam, I admit it…it was a good idea.} If you are considering getting a band- do it! Our Band is from Nashville and will travel, they are awesome!

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Our TCU Fans said “Riff Ram Bah Zoo” and our Michigan Friends yelled, “Let’s Go BLUE!”

View More: http://tulleandgrace.pass.us/airportFor those that don’t know, I have always wanted a fall wedding. October in Georgia is beautiful, but smack in the middle of College Football Season! We chose our day, October 18th, Michigan Football’s bye week. Although we were in the clear on the football schedule, we share our day with my brother, Joey’s birthday. We had a special cake made for him and had the band sing “Happy Birthday!” Thanks Joey for sharing YOUR day with us!

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My ZTA Sorority sisters sang {a little off pitch} our special ZTA Wedding Song and it was time to say goodnight! Our party ended about Midnight. Adam and I left in the helicopter and headed to Atlanta to officially begin our life as husband and wife!

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Adam and I can not thank our family and friends enough for all they invested into our day. From the planning, set-up, take-down and celebrating, thank you for  making our day so perfect in absolutely every way.

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We hope you are enjoying your Newly or Nearly Newlywed moments!

Cheers Y’all!

Adam & Holly

PS: Remember, we’re newlyweds not experts!

Practically Perfect in Every Way

I {Holly} just got back from a long weekend trip to Orlando with my best friend and her family. It was so different seeing  Disney thru the eyes of her little girl. Even though I visit Disney frequently, there is so much I haven’t done that I was able to experience with a Little Cinderella. We met Mickey, Tinkerbell, did Story Time with Belle and stood a line for an hour to meet THE Princess Anna and Queen Elsa of Arendelle. The line was long, but we just had to “Let It Go.”

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Adam and I are enjoying the Married Bliss. Everything is practically perfect in every way.

Except when…Adam forgets to take the trash out or doesn’t finish one of his “projects” or when I leave the lights on all day or do a little too much planning/organizing.

Needless to say we are learning more about each other by being married. New habits that we didn’t realize the other had before getting married and living together. As frustrated as we {occasionally} get with each other, finding out these new habits is rewarding. I love knowing that as much as I think I know my husband, there is a chance I can learn something new to love about him daily. What a great way to spend the next 60 or so years together. I’m blessed to be apart of his world.

We’re taking each debacle with a spoon full of sugar and enjoying our whole new “married” world!

We hope you are enjoying your newly or nearly newlywed moments as much as we are! Remember, we’re newlyweds not experts.

Cheers y’all,

Holly & Adam