Preliminary New England Road Trip Itinerary

MAP

https://goo.gl/maps/FQFmSsR3yC7qqjXEA

Day 1: Burlington, VT
Day 2: Stowe, VT
Day 3: Manchester, VT
Day 4: Woodstock, VT
Day 5: White Rock Mountains, NH
Day 6: Maine Coast (Portland, Kennebunkport, York, Portsmouth)
Day 7: Salem & Boston, MA
Day 8: Boston, MA

ITINERARY

  • Burlington, VT
    • Breakfast: The Skinny Pancake
    • Explore Lake Champlain on bike
    • Country Christmas Loft
    • Travel to Stowe via way of Cambridge
    • Gates Farm Covered Bridge (photo op)
    • Smuggler’s Notch (photo op)
    • Dinner/drinks: Idletyme Brewing Company
  • Stowe, VT
    • Breakfast: Butler’s Pantry
    • Take a gondola up to see a scenic view of Stowe (photo op)
      • They are several but Stowe Mountain Resort was recommended
    • Explore the town of Stowe
    • Emily’s Bridge (photo op)
    • Stowe Maple Products
    • Cold Hollow Cider Mill (photo op)
  • Manchester, VT
    • Travel to Manchester via Route 7
    • Champlain Orchards (photo op)
    • Equinox Valley Nursery (photo op)
  • Woodstock, VT
    • Sleepy Hollow Farm (photo op)
    • Billings Farm & Museum
    • Sugarbush Farm
    • Visit the Woodstock Inn (photo op)
    • Middle Covered Bridge (photo op)
    • Dinner: The Prince and the Pauper or Mangalitsa
  • White Rock Mountains, NH
    • Sunrise: Artist’s Bluff (photo op)
    • Flume George (hike)
    • Breakfast/Coffee: Half Baked & Fully Brewed
    • Kancamagus Highway (foliage scenic route)
    • Bear Notch Road (foliage scenic route)
    • Rocky Gorge Scenic Area (hike)
    • Albany Covered Bridge (photo op)
    • Mount Washington Cog Railway (must buy tickets in advance)
    • Dinner: 1865 Wine Cellar
    • Swift River Bridge (photo op)
  • NE Coast
    • Breakfast: The Holy Donut (Portland, ME)
    • Two Lights Lighthouse
    • Explore Kennebunkport
    • Lunch: Lobster Shack (Ogunquit, ME)
    • Nubble Lighthouse
    • Dinner: Black Trumpet (Portsmouth, NH)
    • Breakfast: Stonewall Kitchen (York, ME *we are backtracking for this)
  • Salem/Boston
    • Stop by Mack’s Apples on the way to Salem
    • Salem Heritage Walking Tour
    • Explore Salem
    • Head to Boston
    • Explore Boston/Freedom Trail
    • Dinner: Little Donkey

SOURCES

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DIY Board & Batten Wall

Am I a DIY blogger now y’all?! I can’t believe I am sharing my first ever home project on here! And the crazy part is that I want to do it all over again. The project list is growing and you know I will take y’all along for the ride!

Backstory to all of this is that I bought my first home in October of 2020. It was built in 2013 so it is pretty updated and was very move in ready but I knew there were a few small changes and upgrades that I wanted to make to make it feel more like me. Well it only took me 8 months, several contractor quotes, and dragging my feet to muster up the courage to attempt my first DIY project.

I had seen and saved several board and batten style walls on Instagram and Pinterest over the 8 months that I was dragging my feet. If you are new to board and batten, just a heads up that there are a million and one different ways to achieve the board and batten style. I personally didn’t care for the super symmetrical patterns and chose something that I felt like elongated my already tall ceilings. Here are the two styles that I was originally between and ultimately with with the left style.

BEFORE

Not much to show before but a plain ‘ol wall. It’s such a big wall that I could never figure out what decor to put on it. Everything seemed lost on the wall so when I discovered board and batten, I was SOLD because honestly little to no decor is needed with this!

DIY Board and Batten Wall

*Before we dive into this tutorial I do want to note that I wish I would have taken more pictures. Sadly I video documented the entirety of the project but somehow didn’t think to take photos. So while I hope that my tutorial is helpful I would also suggest checking out the other articles I reference as well as do your own research prior to embarking on your DIY project.*

MATERIALS

  • Primed Pine Wood
  • Caulking
  • Caulking Gun
  • Invisible Nails
  • Brad Nail Gun
  • Electric Sander
  • Box Cuter
  • Putty Knife
  • Hammer
  • Paint
  • Paint Brushes/Rollers
  • Wood Filler Putty

STEP BY STEP

Step 1: Move all of the furniture out of the way and strip down your wall. It is honestly personal preference if you want to remove any sort of base board and crown molding. We chose to keep our baseboard but remove the trim underneath the upper crown molding so that the board and batten would be flush with the walls on either side. I followed this video to remove the trim. You’ll need a box cutter, putty knife and a hammer (use the claw end). They didn’t use the hammer claw in the video but we found it worked MUCH better to pull the trim away from the wall once the box cutter and putty knife were used to loosen the grip on the wall.

Step 2: Depending on how much you removed/scraped off of the wall, you might have some gaps in the wall where the paint and or part of the dry wall has been removed. We personally did not need to do this as we didn’t remove much and knew the boards would cover it but you do want to ensure that you have a smooth canvas before you start laying your wood! So if you have any uneven parts remove, sand, plaster and sand again.

Step 3: Get a pen and paper and measure out your wall. You will need the exact dimensions of the wall to figure out board spacing and no matter how savvy you or your memory is WRITE IT DOWN. Once you have your dimensions, decide how many vertical boards you want. I knew I wanted minimal boards and larger spacing. Again this is personal preference depending on what look you are going for and it really helped me to physically draw this out! My dimensions were 218 inches x 110 inches which was a bit annoying because all of my measurements didn’t end up being pretty whole numbers.

I decided on 6 vertical boards (including the two side boards) so 5 spaces total. To figure out your spacing between each board you will need to do a little math. Since I knew my board width was 3.75″ (Home Depot will say 4″ but we learned that actually means 3.75″ for some insane reason) and I had 6 boards I multiplied 3.75 x 6= 22.5 and subtracted that from my total width 218-22.5= 195.5. Then divide that number by the number of spaces you will have. Since I had 5 spaces I divided 195.5/ 5= 39.1. This will be your spacing between each vertical board which is what you will need to cut your horizontal boards to. Since I had 5 spaces, I needed 5 … boards.

  • Two 12 ft boards (top board and baseboard)
  • Two 8 ft boards cut down to 6.16 ft (top board and baseboard)
    • Our room was just over 18ft and the biggest size pine wood that they make is 12 ft so we had to put two together)
  • Six 12 ft boards cut down to 8.58 ft (vertical boards)
  • Five 3.28 ft boards (horizontal boards – can use the scrap pieces from the above)

Step 4: It’s time for the fun part! It’s time to add the wood framing. Before we get into specifics though I suggest you do your research between MDF and pine. I originally wanted to use MDF as it is a much cheaper option but Home Depot would not cut it down for me and I was not about to attempt to do it myself so I ultimately went with pine. If you are confident enough to cut your own dimensions (MDF comes in a sheet), then I suggest going the MDF route, if you are a DIY newb like me, spend the extra money and buy the pine and have Home Depot or wherever you purchase from cut it down to your exact dimensions. If you choose to go the MDF route, I found this DIY article helpful.

Step 5: Now it’s time to start adding your wood to the wall. Do your baseboard first, top next and sides last. If you have any sort of trim or baseboard on the surrounding walls be sure to trim the existing baseboard/trims so that your pine fits right in place. Use the invisible nails as glue to mount your boards and then come in with the nail gun to hold the board in place. You want to be generous with the nail glue but don’t go overboard and also keep it in the middle of the board so that it doesn’t ooze out whenever you mount it.

After the boards were up, we probably used about 6 nails per board. You don’t need a ton! Obviously it’s best to nail into a stud but if that’s not possible it’s ok to nail into the wall. Between the invisible glue and nails you will be fine. That being said, if you know you aren’t nailing into a stud, angle the nail in so that it grips into the wall better.

Step 6: Adding in your inner pine pieces. Assuming you measured correctly, your Home Depot technician cut those exact measurements, and your wall isn’t too warped this part should be a breeze. I’m laughing as I type this because let’s just say the starts did NOT align for us as the boards were not cut to the exact dimension AND our wall was pretty warped. It took cutting the boards down a bit and then hammering the boards into place. What I mean by hammering is that we almost had to put the board in at a diagonal angle and then hammer it sideways until it was perfectly vertical. If the boards aren’t flush against the wall with the invisible glue, that’s ok. That is where the caulking will come in.

Step 7: Time to prep for paint! That means filling in all of the nail holes with spackle, caulking where the boards aren’t flush with the wall, and sanding down the board seems so that once the paint goes on you won’t even see where the boards meet.

For caulking, you will need to go around every seem. We literally caulked around every single board. The point of caulking is to fill in any gaps so that all of the boards are flush with the wall. It’s easiest to do one board or section at a time. Apply the caulking swiftly so that you aren’t getting too much in one area. After you do your caulking line, immediately run your finger all the way down the board to make a smooth line. Make sure to also go over any seems where the boards meet. Basically use the caulking everywhere that there is a gap or seem! Use a wet towel to remove any extra caulking from the wall or boards as you don’t want any added texture once you start painting.

Filling in the nail holes with wood filler putty is pretty self explanatory. If you use this tool it makes things much easier. If not, just use your finger and feel free to be generous as you will go back in with a hand sander after and sand down where you just filled in the holes.

An electric sanding machine is going to be your best friend here. We own this one from Amazon and it works like a charm! You can also rent them from Home Depot but the Amazon one is so cheap it makes more sense to just buy it. Now wherever the boards meet sand them down so that they are totally flush. Feel free to also use the sander anywhere that there is added texture. You want your boards to be as smooth as a baby’s bottom with no seems or texture before you start painting.

Step 8: Tape off the outside perimeter with painter’s tape so that you don’t go outside of the lines!

Step 9: Paint time! We went with Sherwin William’s “Passive” which is a light grey. It pulled blueish tones at first which made me worried but it turned out beautiful! We had off white, almost yellow walls before so I opted for a cooler grey to neutralize.

Sherwin Williams had me buy two different types of paint for some reason (one for wood and one for the wall) but don’t do that. We used the wall paint on everything and it worked just fine! We used roller brushes everywhere and then went back in with a paint brush where the roller brush couldn’t fit. It took two coats and we used almost an entire gallon.

AFTER

Drumroll please….. DUN DUN DUN.

I am beyond happy with how it turned out! All in all it took 3 days. One full day of work to get everything ready to the paint stage and then another 2 days just for the two coats of paint so that was probably only a couple hours each day. Now that I have the hang of it and hopefully wouldn’t have to make 10 Home Depot runs again, I would 100% do it again. If I can do it on my first try, I have faith that you can too!

If I missed anything or you have questions feel free to comment below or reach out to me on Instagram. And if you attempt your own board and batten wall- good luck!

DIY Board and Batten Wall
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Instagram Worthy Nashville Guide

For as many times as I’ve been to Nashville (heck and almost moved there in 2019!) this post is LONG overdue. Nashville is hands down one of my favorite places. I always have an absolute blast every time that I go so I have no doubt you will have the trip of a lifetime. Good food, great partying and a hell of a lot of fun dancing make for the best memories.

WHERE TO EXPLORE

Broadway– where ALL of the bars (and people) are. Many of the bars are owned by famous country singers. Expect live music, big crowds and drunk shenanigans here. I like staying walking distance from Broadway.
Music Row– bars and restaurants. Come here if you want to get away from Broadway but still have several fun bars within walking distance! Also walk over to The Graduate hotel for a coffee or drink- you won’t regret it.
The Gulch– come for the biscuits (Biscuit Love), stay for the shopping and pictures with the giant angel wings. Also another good area to stay if you don’t want to be so close to Broadway.
12 South– fun area with a good mix of restaurants, shopping and wall murals. Want a cute Instagram photo? Come here.

WHERE TO STAY

Noelle- I’ve never actually stayed here but everyone RAVES about it. I’ve stopped into the hotel lobby bar as well as the coffee shop multiple times and always love the vibe! The rooftop bar, Rare Bird, is also supposed to have a great view plus it’s walkable to Broadway!
Thompson Nashville- Located in the Gulch it’s an absolutely beautiful, hotel with modern music touches. My only complaint- no bath tubs 😛 Other than that it’s a great location.
Westin Nashville- Great location (downtown near Broadway) and very upscale for a Westin! If you are looking for a more budget friendly option than some of the others, this is a great choice and the rooftop bar is AMAZING.
Bobby Hotel- I stayed here on my most recent trip to Nashville and the rooms are definitely a little funky when it comes to decor but overall it’s so much fun and all of their food and dining is top notch.

WHERE TO EAT

@libertycommon- Located near Broadway. We went for a late brunch (HH starts at 2) and thought it was so darn cute. Made for the perfect start to day drink on Broadway!
@thehamptonsocial- Located near Broadway. Although this is a chain it’s still a fun spot especially if you’ve never been! It features the iconic “Rosé all Day” neon sign. Suggest going for a boozy brunch but honestly you can’t go wrong with lunch or dinner either!
@bartacolife- Located in 12S. I go here every single time I hit the ground in Nashville it’s that good! First things first- amazing spicy margs! Also all of the menu and ordering process is virtual so you order everything through an app and it’s delivered to your table in a matter of minutes. Excellent food, decor, and service!
@henrietta_red- Located in Germantown. I keep wanting to try this cute stop but still haven’t made it. I had to include it because it comes highly recommended for their simplistic, chic decor and fresh ingredient dishes!
The Southern- Located in South Broadway. If you are looking for a nice dinner spot, look no further! Amazing steak and oyster options plus it’s a short walk to Broadway if you want to go two step the night away after! And if you go for brunch don’t pass up the ribs. *chef’s kiss*
@pinewoodsocialist-Located in South Broadway. This is a popular instagrammable spot featuring delicious menu items as well as bowling in an industrial-chic atmosphere. Great for large crowds!
@urbangrubtherestaurant12south- Located in the 12S area. The BEST brunch in Nashville by far. You will die when you see the buffet spread is insane (oysters, crab legs, shrimp and grits, plus the regular breakfast fare). Heads up- don’t order the “all you can eat” buffet option (it will set you back $50!)- just get the “one time” buffet option and pile that plate as high as it can go! Scott and I didn’t realize how expensive the unlimited option was and both of us ended up eating only one plate!
@biscuitlovebrunch- Located in the Gulch. You absolutely can’t come to Nashville and not indulge in some biscuits. Lots of places have them but Biscuit Love is arguably the best. They also have good drink specials.

WHERE TO DRINK

@lajacksonbar – rooftop bar in The Gulch. Great vibes and always a good crowd not to mention the view is INSANE.
@fglhouse – Florida Georgia Line’s Bar on Broadway that NEVER disappoints. Love day drinking here.
@acmenashville – located on Broadway. We usually stop and get food here but it’s also a fun bar!
@whiskeyrownashville– one of my favorite bars on Broadway. We always end up here especially later in the evening! The third floor (rooftop) always has a DJ making it a fun spot to dance.
Tootsies– you can’t come to Broadway and not go here. One of the oldest honkey tonk bars!
@zeppelin.nashville – rooftop bar off the beaten path. I forget what the shot is called but you must get the edible flower shot- it makes your whole mouth numb (in a good way lol).

Losers– total dive bar but SO much fun. Seriously I saved the best one for last. They have a bar next door called winners but it’s way more fun to be a Loser;)
@whitelimozeennash – cute rooftop bar. Located at the top of The Graduate hotel. If you can make a reservation for brunch- do it!

Instagram Worthy Nashville Guide
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HUGE 2021 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Try On

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

KISS Tee// fits a little cropped but I went with my true size
Levi Jeans// size down if in between sizes- slight stretch
Converse// size down a .5 size
Leather Mini Skirt// size up if in between sizes
High Top Chunky Converse// size up a half size
Leather Cropped Pants// size down if in between sizes (wearing a 0)
Chunky Boots// true to size

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Oversized Sweater// THE sweater of the sale- size down 1-2 sizes.
Suede Mini Skirt// size down (I wear the 24)
Sleeveless Turtleneck Tunic// size down if in between sizes.
SPANX Faux Leather Leggings// get your true legging size (I wear an XS)
Booties// size up a half size
Knee High Boots// true to size

Free People Henley// stretchy and perfect for leggings as it is slightly lower in the back. Fits oversized but suggest getting your true size. If it’s sold out here is an almost identical one!
SPANX Faux Leather Leggings// get your true legging size (I wear an XS)
Adidas// size down a half size (I prefer these if they are in stock)
Good American Cropped Jean// great for my petite and/or curvy gals! They hug in all of the right places. Size down if in between sizes (I wear a 00)
Booties// size up a half size

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Try On

Military Shacket// this one is great because it’s not super heavy. Size down if in between sizes-runs big (wearing a XS)
Plaid Fleece Lined Shacket// o my heavens this was one of my favorite purchases. Super warm, super cute. Did I mention pockets? (wearing a small)
Corduroy Shacket// great transitional pieces as it’s not too warm. Size down if in between sizes (wearing a XS)
Leather Cropped Pants// size down if in between sizes (wearing a 0)
Distressed Denim// size down- run big (wearing a 24 and they were slightly big)
Chunky Booties// true to size. They don’t have any zippers or laces as they pull on like a sock!

Fitted Flannel// since it is fitted, I suggest sizing up if you want it a little roomy. I’m wearing a small here.
Good American Cropped Jean// great for my petite and/or curvy gals! They hug in all of the right places. Size down if in between sizes (I wear a 00)
Chain Link Mules// size up a half size. Great for work!
Oversized Flannel// it’s a little bit longer in the back which makes it perfect for leggings! Size up if inbetween sizes. Wearing a small.
Platform Converse// size down a half size.

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Try On

Pink/Red Maxi Dress// Whether you are attending a wedding or going wine tasting this maxi would be perfect! Fit is true to size.
Leopard Maxi Dress// It’s hard to make a maxi dress sexy but this one nailed it! It does run a little big so size down if in between sizes.
Black Floral Maxi Dress// From work to church, this maxi is GORG! Size down if in between sizes (I’m wearing an XXS).
Booties// size up a half size

Madewell Button Down// not too fitted, not too boxy. Size down if in between sizes. Wearing an XS.
Sleeveless Turtleneck Tunic// size down if in between sizes.

Madewell Sweater// I suggest sizing up if you don’t want it super fitted. I’m wearing a size medium here.
Madewell Denim// size down if in between sizes. LOTS of stretch.
Madewell Cardigan// fits true to size. SO dang soft.
Padded T Shirt Bodysuit// I grabbed this in multiple colors! Great basic. Fits TTS.
Good American Cropped Jean// great for my petite and/or curvy gals! They hug in all of the right places. Size down if in between sizes (I wear a 00)
Booties// size up a half size

Blue Knotted Dress// perfect for a wedding guest or even the office! Size down if in between sizes (wearing a 0).
Black Fitted Dress// holy moly yall this dress is GOLD. It is form fitting but doesn’t show too much as the material is on the thicker side. You know how every gal needs a LBD? This one’s it. Size down if in between sizes (wearing an XS)

Plaid Fitted Blazer// AMAZING fit. One of my favorite finds that is SO versatile. Fits true to size (wearing an XS)
Long Line Jacket Blazer// fit is true to size. Great to wear over dresses to the office.

BlankNYC Denim Jacket// It is cinched in the back which makes your waistline look smaller. Can be worn like a shirt or open like a jacket. Fits TTS.
Graphic Tee// I sized up to a medium for an oversized fit.
Faux Leather Leopard Biker Shorts// size down. Wearing an XXS.
Levi’s Sweatshirt// I sized up to a small.
Levi Jeans// size down if in between sizes- slight stretch

Nike Sweatshirt// fleece lined, fits oversized. Wearing an XS.
Nike Shorts// fit true to size.
High Shine Leggings// if in between sizes, size down. They do have a drawstring waist. Great for high impact workouts but cute enough to wear whenever!
Adidas// size down a half size.

Adidas Sweatshirt// fits oversized but I suggest getting your true size. I’m wearing an XS.
Adidas Sweatpants// again fit oversized but I think that’s the look. If you are petite I suggest sizing down. I’m in the XS and had to roll them.
Sweaty Betty 7/8 Leggings// size down if in between sizes. I wear the XXS. Great for high impact workouts. They do have a drawstring waistband so they don’t fall down.
High Top Platform Converse// fit true to size. The soles are super squishy and comfy!

Free People Oversized Tank// wearing an XS. Fits very oversized. Great to throw on and go with a sports bra as it’s long enough to cover the bum. Does have pockets.
Free People Biker Shorts// Run a tad big. I am in the XS/S and they were very big/ill fitting on me.
Sweaty Betty Sports Tank// Size up! It does run small. I’m in the S. If you purchase their stamina sports bra, it does fit true to size.


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NSALE Work Wear Essentials

When I think of the NSALE, I automatically think back to my first couple of years shopping the sale. I would take off from my corporate job the first day that I was able to shop the sale and make a whole day out of it! Of course, my main focus back then was shopping work wear which is why I still love incorporating it as much as possible even if my job looks a little different these days. The sale is a great time to stock up on classic work pumps, slacks and blazers! See above and below for some style inspiration.

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