7 things to do in nashville

hey ya’ll! i feel like i can say that now that i’ve been to the south…too much? probably. 🙂

s and i took a trip with friends to nashville earlier this fall and had tons of fun. here are our must-sees from the trip:

first stop: nashville visitor center


one of the first stops we made in the city was the nashville visitor center. pretty important if you haven’t done your research yet and not sure what exactly you want to do. they also have some of the cutest shirts in their gift shop!

country music hall of fame


one of s and my must go stops for the entire trip was the country music hall of fame. admission is charged and you do have the option to get a tour of the studio, but we only had so much time.

the hall of fame has rotating exhibits, so it is pretty neat to know that if were to make a trip back in years, we would be able to see a different things. great idea!

some of my favorite things i saw:

belle meade plantation


we were fortunate to have a friend of ours that planned the trip come along with us…everyone should have one of those!

when she told me the plan, i wasn’t quite sure i was going to enjoy the plantation tour, but everyone was pretty excited about it and i wasn’t about the rain on their parade. it turned out the be pretty cool!

a little history of the land:

  • belle meade in their hayday’s claim to fame was being a leader in thorough bred horses. one of their most important contributions is that all but maybe three of the best racing horses in history have been sired or are from the lineage of their stud horse. this includes american pharaoh and seabiscut – how cool is that to say!
  • they have only had a few owners in history. a few included the jackson and harding families – neither of which are in any relation to the presidents, wanda or michael (we asked).
  • the only damage seen to the mansion from the civil war ended up being a few nics in the pillars on the front of the home. lucky people!

more information and plan your visit here!

jack daniels distillery


let me start this out that i am not a huge whiskey fan. yes, i will drink it from time to time with a sprite or coke, but a place where it is made would not have been on my list of “to do” in nashville.

with that being said, it was a pretty cool thing to see. there are a few different options of tours. one for those who do not want to sample and a few for those who do. keep in mind that if you want to go with your group, you all need to do that same tour even if you aren’t going to sample.

on the tour, you walk through where they make the whiskey (obviously), but you also get to learn how they make the barrels and why their whiskey is different than any other.

interesting fact: the jack daniels distillery is in a dry county! hmm…

they are some how able to sell the alcohol in their gift shop. this was explained to us, but i don’t remember now. guess i wasn’t really paying attention to that part.

cummins falls


another one of those “not sure it’s gonna be my thing” moments came when it was mentioned that we are going to cummins falls. man was i wrong!

so if you’re planning a trip but want to see more of what tennessee has to offer than just country music, be sure to pack your swim suit and some hiking shoes (waterproof or sandal like if possible) and head on over. it’s only about 30 minutes of the city.

the listening room

walking around nashville, you hear music from literally every bar and business down town. stop in for a drink and make sure to tip those artists because that’s how they get paid.

but, if you want to hear some of the best music in town, be sure to stop in to the listening room. there is a $7 cover, but you get to hear some awesome music from the song writers themselves. when we were in town, we were lucky enough to be able to see a classmate of mine. it was so fun! and we got to hear a song that just got recorded by lady antebellum.

#1 favorite spot: the grand ole pry


the place i knew we had to go – the grand ole opry. i wish i lived closer because i would legit go at least once a month. i would be poor, but i would get to see a lot of amazing people!

advice for the opry – don’t wait until you know who is going to perform. just get your tickets as soon as you know what dates you are going to be down there. chances are you will know at least one artist playing that evening, and you’ll get to see some others that you didn’t know but will end up loving! who knows, maybe it will be carrie underwood or little big town (wasn’t for our trip, but a girl can dream!).

so, that was my vacation. oh wait, did i forget to mention food? look for that soon in another post!

if you have any favorites from nashville or some travel tips, share those in the comments below.

but for now…

xo, laura

Sum Sum Summertime! How to deal with the heat when you have MS.


A few weeks ago, my family and I traveled out to Chamberlain, SD to do some fishing. What was the first thing I checked? The weather. No one wants to be out on a boat fishing for 6 hours when it’s raining. Luckily, there was no rain in the forecast. BUT we were going to be out on the river in 90-100 degree heat – for real people, it was HOT!

When you have MS, you never know what the day is going to bring. It couldn’t be more true than during the summer! Many people with MS have their symptoms exacerbated by the heat of summer. Buy how should you deal with it?

  1. If at all possible, do not go outside. But who wants to enjoy the beautiful summer months indoors? So let’s say limit the amount of time you spend outdoors.
  2. Wear light layers. If there is a nice breeze, you want to be able to feel that against your skin. That will help to keep you cool.
  3. Bring water with you. This will be helpful to keep you hydrated or to pour over your skin to cool your core down. Maybe even carry a rag that you can dampen and place on the back of your neck.
  4. Like #3, go somewhere where you can get in the water. I was a lifeguard at a pool the summer I had my first attack and the next 3 summers. It was a great perk to be able to get in and cool off when I was on break.

During your time in the sun and the time after your exposure, you are probably going to feel some fatigue. That is totally normal and ok! It is just your body’s way of telling you “Maybe that was a little much. Let’s take it down next time.” Read this article here to find more information about how ok it is to be tired when you have MS.

Do you have any other ideas on how to deal with the heat when you have MS? Comment! I would love to get some new ideas.

Upping my green thumb game


This weekend, I plan to attend Central Garden’s Annual Plant Sale.

I have heard so many good things about the sale, and am almost ready to start planning my home landscaping. I also have a pot or two to freshen up, and what better way than to speak with some local gardeners and help out a non-profit at the same time?

What is the plant sale?

Hundreds of perennials are donated from local gardeners and from Central Gardens itself that are all very reasonably priced. In addition to being able to buy these plants, attendees can also mingle with many vendors who sell garden-related items, many of which are handcrafted.

There is also a treasure trove of used garden-related items for sale at a very low price. Plus, we have master gardeners available to answer questions, educational information shared by experts in their areas, children’s activities, and free coffee and goodies available. And, all guests can enter their name for a drawing of a piece of pottery.

When is the plant sale?

This year’s plant sale is Saturday May 21, 2016 from 8 am to noon. Admission is free.

I have been told that you want to be there early before all the good ones are gone!

For more information, visit Central Garden’s webpage.

– L