Weekending in D.C.


Last weekend, RM and I hopped on a quick flight to D.C. It’s been on our “want to visit” list for a while, and when I found a great price on flights (that we could use our JetBlue CC points on!) and a super cool Airbnb, we decided to jump on it. All of the sites I went to said that September through November were the best times to visit D.C., weather-wise, so it worked out perfectly.

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We opted to fly out on a Saturday as it was cheaper than a Friday, and I think I actually liked it better than leaving on a Thursday. We flew into the Ronald Reagan airport, which I would recommend as it was a quick 15 minute Uber into downtown D.C. Plus, JetBlue has flights basically every hour so it’s easy to find something that works for you! We opted for the 8:40am flight out of Boston, allowing us to sleep to a normal hour and still get us to D.C. by 10:30am.

We stayed in a really great Airbnb in Logan Circle, which was the absolute perfect location for us. It was within a 5 minute walk to 14th Street, which is lined with restaurants, bars, cafe’s and stores. It was about 1-2 miles to the major sites, but we would rather be close to restaurants than the sites so it worked out well. Here’s the link if you’re looking for the best place to stay: Affordable Luxury – Locan Circle. Penny was so nice and helpful and the Airbnb had everything we could need or want. We both loved the feeling of “going home” after a long day of touristy things on our feet.

We quickly dropped our things off and headed out for a quick snack (and drink) before making our way to the White House. We ended up at Slipstream, which was totally our style – lots of healthy food options, good coffee and tasty bubbly 😉

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From there, we walked to the White House, Washington Monument (which is HUGE, btw, I couldn’t get over it and kept talking about it all weekend, lol), WWII Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Memorial and more. It was a lot of walking and a lot of site-seeing, but it was a great way to kick off the weekend!

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We walked our way back up to 14th Street and popped in at Churchkey for a drink and a snack. They have a HUGE beer selection, so if craft beers is your thing, I’d suggest checking it out. When we finished up, we stopped in at the Whole Foods to stock up on necessities for our stay: breakfast items, fruit, snacks, beer & wine. Loved having that handy!

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After resting up and showering, we decided to go to Estadio, which was a Spanish tapas restaurant. We found seats at the bar as soon as we got there, which was lucky because the place got so busy throughout the night! Everything about this restaurant was excellent – the bar staff, drinks, food & vibe. Seriously, we were both in foodie and drink heaven! While we sipped our drinks (Tecolate – Tequila & Cava, Rosemary & Grapefruit, for me and Old Raj Gin & Orange Thyme Tonic for RM – the Orange Thyme Tonic was house-made and so good!), we took recommendations from the bar tender. We opted for the following dishes: Bacalao Crudo, Jalapeño, Avocado, Orange & Olive Oil, the Calamari, the Sauteed Shrimp, the Grilled Pork Loin, Crispy Kale & Seared Peaches and then the Brussels Sprouts, Caramelized Onions, Pine Nuts & Currants. We ended with a Pumpkin Bread Pudding which was TO DIE FOR. Seriously, one of the best desserts we’ve had!

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On Sunday, I started the day with a quickie workout and then we made our way to the National Archives Museum to see the Declaration of Independence, Emancipation Proclamation, Constitution and more.  I’ve heard that this museum can have long lines, but we got there early enough to avoid them so it was great. From there, we went to the Capitol Building, Library of Congress, Botanical Gardens, National Air and Space Museum and ended at the Holocaust Museum. It was a long day of tourism things, but everything we saw was incredible, but I have to say I was most moved by the Holocaust Museum. It was a really intensely powerful museum and there were times where I got really emotional. I’m still thinking about it, so even though it was a lot to take in, I would highly suggest visiting if you can.

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Once again, before we went back to our Airbnb, we popped into a bar for a drink. This time we ended up at Pearl Dive Oyster Bar, which was great because they had an outdoor bar and a good scene of people.

For dinner, we opted for a casual dinner at Etto Pizzeria, where we had a delicious meal. We started with some cured meats and a spicy cauliflower dish and then shared a pizza and everything was really good! Plus, sitting outside in October is pretty great 🙂

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On our last day in D.C., we opted for less touristy stuff and decided to head over to Georgetown for shopping and walking around. We stopped by the White House first, though, hoping we might see some action (we didn’t 😦 ).

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Georgetown reminded us both of Newbury/Boylston, but also Beacon Hill. The only difference was that there were more stores and fewer restaurants. It was a really fun way to spend the day end end out the vacation – and we scored some great things!

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For our last dinner, we went to Ghibellina. I had wanted to go to Le Diplomate because it was recommended to us by the Airbnb owner and every website we went to, but it was always super busy. Ghibellina was great, though, and we enjoyed a casual meal at the bar.
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All in all, it was such a wonderful trip! I’m not a huge history person, but I have to say that I really enjoyed all of the history that D.C. has to offer – it was a pretty incredible city! I hope you find this post helpful if you decide to take a trip to D.C.!

Questions for you: Have you ever been to DC? What’s a city that’s been on your “want to visit” list? Do you prefer active vacations or beachy vacations?

 

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Quick Charleston Weekend

Hey guys! How’s everyone doing? Did you have a nice 4th? My blog had a ton of hits earlier this week, mostly relating to 4th of July workouts so I hope you guys found something fun to do! We had a great 1 year anniversary trip back in Jackson, NH. I’ll share more on that later, but today I wanted to share my recap of a recent trip to Charleston, SC  enjoy!

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A few weeks ago, I went to Charleston, SC for a bachelorette party. Charleston is a city that’s been on my “want to visit” list for a long time, so I was thrilled when the bride-to-be picked it as the destination. Not only was I excited to finally get to experience the charm that is always depicted in the pictures I see people share, but I was also excited at the potential possibility of running into someone from Southern Charm 😉 This is my not-so-guilty pleasure show that I absolutely love! Lucky for me, we did get to see Chelsea driving down the street with her mom in a little golf cart. And yes, I did run out of the bar (The Gentry, owned by another cast member on the show, JD) to say hello… I was totally that girl!

Let’s back up, though. Due to my work/teaching schedule, I decided to fly out on a Saturday morning and home on  Monday morning. I scheduled a 6am flight so that I could get there early enough to basically have the whole day.

Unfortunately, as I mentioned in this post, that did not happen as there was a snafu with my luggage (spoiler alert & update: my luggage was found AND returned to me with NOTHING missing. My faith in humanity has been restored!) so by the time I got there, it was nearly 5pm so I had just enough time to chug a vino at the apartment before literally running down King street trying to shop for necessities before the stores closed at 6pm. Woof.

 

That said, my Charleston experience barely brushed the surface of what I was hoping for, but it just means we will need to go back again!

Where We Stayed

The bride-to-be’s cousin and my sister coordinated most of the weekend’s details and found the most amazing AirBnB rental for us to stay at for Saturday & Sunday night. It was on Society Street, which is right off of King street, one of the most popular streets in Charleston, lined with shops & restaurants. I would highly suggest this place if you’re going with a group and need lots of space. It has two big bedrooms and plenty of the space in the living room for an air mattress, 2.5 bathrooms, private garage parking included, a gym in the facility and a HUGE outdoor patio/deck space.

What We Did & Where We Ate

Although I was not there on Friday night, the girls who were there had dinner at 5Church, which they all raved about! They said the decor, atmosphere, food & drinks were all amazing, so it’s definitely a place I would like to check out.

On Saturday, my sister had made lunch reservations at HUSK, which is a very well-known, highly visited restaurant in Charleston. Unfortunately, due to my baggage fiasco, I did not get to Charleston in time for this, which I was REALLY bummed about. The girls said that it was one of the best lunches they’ve ever had!

Once I did get to Charleston, we shopped quickly and then saddled up in a corner window area of The Gentry, which is a bar owned by JD on the show Southern Charm. This place had a cool vibe and the Rose was delicious! We share a few starter plates which were also great.

Since we had plans of going out on Saturday night, we opted to hang out at the apartment and order pizza, which was a great idea as it gave us 7 girls plenty of time to get ready, catch up and have fun.

We ultimately ended up at Republic, which was more of a club atmosphere than I was anticipating. However, we made our way outside to the bar area and it was much quieter and a better scene for chatting and hanging out (although I would’ve loved to have danced all night inside the club!).

Sunday we went out to Folly Beach and had lunch right outside, basically on the water, at Blu, which was awesome! They have a huge deck, great drinks and food and live music! I could’ve spent hours just hanging out and drinking on that deck, but the beach was ultimately calling our name so after lunch we set up shop in the sand.

While walking to dinner on Sunday night, we decided to pop into a restaurant with a cool looking roofdeck, but unfortunately I can’t remember the name of it 😦 From there, we walked to Craftsmen Kitchen and Tap House for dinner and we were able to sit outside in their little patio area. The weather was perfect for outdoor dining! The food was SO good- we shared some apps and then got a various array of different dinner items and shared those as well. We finished out the night at Vendue for a little more roof deck action. Since it was a Sunday, things were pretty quiet so we went back to the Airbnb after 1 drink.

My flight was at 9am on Monday so I was up and out pretty early. The flight Gods were on my side and our first flight left early and I was able to get on an earlier connection flight back to Boston which was really great, especially after my less than stellar airport/flying experience on the way to Charleston.

Overall, even thought the weekend started our rough and I thought that I was never getting my bag back, it was such a FUN weekend spent with a really great group of girls. Can’t wait for the big day in August!

Questions for you: Have you ever been to Charleston, SC? What was your favorite part? What’s a city on your “want to visit” list?

 

Vegas Recap {Where we stayed, what we did, where we ate}

Hi there! I’m back for a full recap of our Vegas vacation. If you missed my “What I Wore” recap, you can find that here.

For as long as I can remember, RM has always wanted to go to Vegas together. He’s been so many times, and just absolutely loves it there. I went once years ago with my girlfriends and had fun, but also think I was a little young to really appreciate all that Vegas has to offer (besides clubs open all night 😉 ). When we finally found relatively “cheap” flights for the both of us, we booked a last minute long weekend trip out there- totally uncharacteristic of us to be so spontaneous and book this type of trip 1.5 weeks ahead of the travel dates, but it ended up working out great and we had the best time- enjoy the recap!

Where We Stayed

RM did a bunch of research on places to stay, even though his favorite place has always been the Bellagio. We ended up staying at the Wynn, because, surprisingly enough, they had the best rates of all the hotels that we were looking at. While it’s a bit off the main hot spots of the strip (unlike the Bellagio  that’s right in the midst of everything), it was not so far like Mandalay Bay so it didn’t feel totally removed. We were also a super short walk to the Pilazzo and Venetian, which are also very popular hotels for gambling and restaurants.

The Wynn was an absolutely GORGEOUS hotel. The lobby, the employees,  the flowers, the art, the shopping, the food, the pool, the rooms… everything was really top notch. Our room, in particular, really wow’d us- it was incredibly spacious and well equipped with everything we could’ve wanted or needed. Waking up and getting to just press a button to open the curtains for the view of the strip was really cool (and convenient!).

My sister also surprised me with a bottle of bubbly as a late birthday gift, which was SO thoughtful! This made for a great poolside drink 😉

The main thing I was looking forward to on this trip (well, besides hanging with RM nonstop) was  soaking up some serious pool time. Luckily, the Wynn had multiple pools to choose from so this was easy! For the first day and a half we were at the “party” pool, which was wonderful for people watching. That pool was closed on our last day, which actually worked out well since we were looking for a quieter pool experience.

We also took advantage of the hotel’s gym, which was such a nice hotel gym- it had everything you’d want and we were both able to get in some quick sweat sesh’s before sitting by the pool. Fitness doesn’t have to be hard and it doesn’t have to be super time consuming, remember? 20 minutes and we were in and out!

Where/What We Ate

Food is always a big part of our travel. Before trips, we like to think about what types of food we want to eat when we are away: Italian, Steak, Sushi, Mexican, American, etc. Generally when it comes to food, we have a nice breakfast to start the day, we snack on something light for lunch and then go out to a nice dinner. Here were our choices during our trip:

  • Terrace Cafe– This was in the Wynn and we ate there multiple times since it was so good and convenient. Our first day we were starving so we had lunch there- we shared a wrap and the Super Food Salad which was so good that we ordered it another day for lunch, too. It was packed with organic quinoa, farro, baby kale, radishes, tomato, bell peppers, onions and an herb vinaigrette. We definitely plan on re-creating at home, and topping it with grilled chicken! We also had breakfast there every morning, usually consisting of eggs and either yogurt, fruit, pancakes or something similar. We always get one sweet and one savory dish when we go out to breakfast and then share them. They have fantastic eggs benedict options (using a turkey patty as the base or a crab cake as the base) which are worth checking out if that’s your thing.

  • La Cave– On our first night there, we got a bit of a late start (needed a nap!) so we opted to pop into La Cave, also in the Wynn, for a light dinner. We shared another great salad, chicken skewers & a flatbread. It was the perfect amount of food for us.

  • Nobu– This sushi restaurant came highly recommended by my cousin, and was also a “must visit again” for RM. Their first location is in the Hard Rock hotel, but they have a newer location at Cesar’s Palace. Unfortunately Cesar’s didn’t have any availability so we had to trek it to the Hard Rock. it was worth it, though- the sushi was absolutely delicious and the service was impeccable!

  • Delmonico Steak House– We both felt like steak on our last night so we went to Delmonico’s as it’s one of RM’s favorite Vegas steak houses. This was another phenomenal meal! We started with a terrific bottle of Barolo wine, oysters & a salad and then shared their signature Ribeye steak, corn puree & potatoes. Oh, and finished with the most delicious pecan pie 😉 Worth every penny!

I also wanted to share a little tip that helped us save money. Vegas is expensive- there’s just no way around it, but I also think our hotel was exceptionally expensive and when I got the bill for 2 margarita’s by the pool the first day ($32!!!), we realized we should try to find a way to cut back there a bit. During our walk down the strip we found a liquor store and grabbed some beers and mini wine’s and filled one of the bathroom sinks with ice and keeping the drinks on ice in our room. We would take a plastic bag with ice & drinks in it down to the pool and they never noticed or cared! At $9-$20 a drink, it saved us A LOT of money! The bubbly from my sister helped, too 😉

What We Did

We had grand plans of going to see a few shows and night clubs, but once we got there, we realized we didn’t want to be tied down to specific plans.  The Chainsmokers were playing at our hotels club/night lounge the night we got there, but the concierge said they wouldn’t actually get on until 2-2:30am… considering that was PST (3 hours behind) and that we had been up since 4am EST, we decided to forgo that idea. Instead, we went to the new(ish) Cosmopolitan hotel and had a drink at their Chandelier bar, gambled a little and went to their lounge bar which was really a fun scene. We spent a lot of time at the pool- having drinks, enjoying the music and some pretty awesome people watching. We walked a good portion of the strip one day which I enjoyed- the sites are so amazing, the hotels so grand, and you just see things there that you wouldn’t see back home. I learned how to play BlackJack and really enjoyed it (while we were winning!), but want to now learn how to play craps because that looked like so much fun.

Bottom line, you can pretty much do anything you want in Vegas: shows, clubs, lounge bars, pools, pool parties, drinking, walking, eating well… limitless possibilities, which is just part of what makes the city so much fun.

Overall, the trip was so great- I was so proud of us for being spontaneous.

But the real question is… Where to next?!

Kicking It At Fenway {& Other Birthday/Long Weekend Celebrations}

When I told people that I got up to go to a 6am workout at Fenway on my birthday, most thought I was a little crazy. Who wakes up extra early on their birthday, and day off, for that matter?! Me, haha But for me, starting out the day/year with one of my favorite things (working out) is exactly what I love doing. And, when you combine that with getting to workout AT Fenway and WITH Eliza & a huge Kick It Crew, it makes for a pretty awesome start to the day and year.

Big thanks to New Balance for inviting me to take part in the workout & DayBreaker event. and providing me with this awesome outfit to wear! I’m totally obsessed with everything!

Unfamiliar with DayBreaker? In short, it’s a really incredible way to start the day- first you workout (yoga or some other fitness class) and then you dance… all before work. Yes, it is as amazing as it sounds! Founders of the idea came up with it as a way to show that you can dance and have fun while being sober, and that doing that before work is a great way to get the brain’s “happy chemicals” going (dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin & endorphins). Another cool part about the event is that you wear headphones to hear the music and instructor, so to onlookers it looks like a silent workout since you can’t hear what’s going on. As I looked back through my Instagram Story, I was laughing at how funny it looked because there was no sound!

I had a blast hanging out with fellow instructors and bloggers!

From there, I came home to the most beautiful, springy bouquet from RM and then went to get my nails done.

For Christmas, my sister had gotten us a night at a hotel, so we opted to cash that in on my birthday up in Portsmouth, NH. Being from Maine, Portsmouth has always been that perfect halfway meeting spot for family and friends, but other than lunches or dinners up there, I haven’t really spent any extended time getting to know the city. That said, RM and I totally fell in love with the city- so many great restaurants, bars, shops, etc.

We stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn, which was a perfect location for everything downtown. The room was big and clean- we would definitely recommend it! Here’s a quick recap:

  • Lunch at Gaslight- food was good, but the service was terrible and so slow!
  • Post lunch drink on the awesome (but small) deck at Old Ferry Landing– we has so much fun there!

  • Birthday dinner at Black Trumpet– This came highly recommended by Athena and some others so we decided to check it out for dinner. They did not steer us wrong- we had the most unbelievable meal there! It’s a small spot with 2 levels and we grabbed seats at the bar upstairs. We had drinks (the wine on tap was SO good) and then shared the following: Chickpea Socca, Goat Doner Kebab, Warm Octopus Salad,  Archer Angus Chuck Steak and cookies & milk for dessert.

  • My parents met us for lunch the next day and we went to Rudi’s, which was also fantastic! We had a drink at the bar and then enjoyed a great lunch. My parents had just gotten back from a 3 week road trip/vacation so it was fun to catch up with them!

We squeezed in a quickie workout when we got back before having a quite night in.

Easter Sunday started with breakfast and Church followed by a small Easter dinner at RM’s mother’s house and a long walk when we got back.

Before we knew it, Marathon Monday was upon us and we were heading to Solas to hang with the NB crew. This is such a fun day and event- so thankful to get to be a part of it!

All I could think about when I saw this photo was “I’m on a boat!” haha

Overall, it was such a wonderful birthday/holiday/long weekend filled with pretty much all of my favorite things.

What’s been up?

Good morning! Happy Tuesday! I don’t do many “Weekend Recaps” anymore, but considering the past weekend was a really good one filled with lots of different things, I thought I’d share with you 🙂

It had been a long week, so I was more than ready for a vino! We went to Buff’s (surprise, surprise) for dinner after and it was a great way to end the week

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Saturday I had the opportunity to sub TWO classes at EBF Seaport so I ended up getting Dana to sub my YMCA Kickboxing class (thank you!) so I could head to the Seaport. I subbed a BAGSXKICKS and BAGXBEATS and they were both SO fun! I was nervous about the Kicks class since I had never taught it, but I think between having enough BAGS experience and enough kickboxing experience I was able to teach a good class. I also finally got my haircut. My normal hairdresser was not working on Saturday so I had to go back to my old salon, but she did a good job so I was happy with it! After teachin and hair I went to lunch and got my nails done in Southie with my sister and a friend from work and then got home with enough time to relax and finished The Wonder, which was SOOO good- you need to read it if you haven’t! Saturday night, Roberto took me to SRV to celebrate my promotion and Valentine’s Day. This restaurant has been on my list for a while so I’m glad we finally got to try it. It’s a Venetian small plates type of restaurant and everything we tried was great, and I especially loved that they served Aperol Spritz- which is my favorite Italian drink!

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After church on Sunday, Roberto and I headed to the Boston Wine Expo since his friend was gracious enough to give us tickets to. He owns Tre Olive, which I’ve talked about a lot on here! We had a blast at the expo and it was so nice to catch up with the Tre Olive guys- if you are in need of a good foodie gift- check out their site. You can adopt an olive tree for them and they’ll receive tins of olive oil from that tree- it’s very cool! When we got home, I went for a quickie run because the weather was too nice to not get outside, and then I spent the rest of the night cleaning, cooking and watching Cinderella Man with RM.

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Yesterday morning, I headed to EBF #FIDI to take a class “Pre-Opening”  with George as a way to break in the new studio before opening day. It officially opens on Thursday and I couldn’t be more excited to be part of the fun! Catch me on Thursdays (starting this week!) at 6:20pm for BAGSXBEATS- sign up here!

https://www.facebook.com/EverybodyFightsFiDi/

After class, I went up to Maine after the EBF class and had a great time catching up with my parents. My mom and I went snow shoeing/X-Country skiing on the lake and then around the house before settling down in front of the fire to drink bubbly and hang out. Relaxing, again, is so under-rated 😉

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And here we are, another week! As far as teaching, I think I’m just teaching 2 BAGSXBEATS classes this week- tonight at GymIt in Watertown at 6:30pm and Thursday at FIDI at 6:20pm- come join for the fun!

Lastly, I am hosting another MoveWith class, but this time it’s going to be at the New Balance Flagship Store in Brighton, which I’m SO excited about! It’s on March 29th and DJ Sprino will be there and I’ll have after workout treats from Purity Organics and Larabar (and hopefully more) and everyone will get a 20% discount for shopping! You don’t want to miss this, so grab your friends and sign up here!