Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Charleston (March 2015)

Way back in July, Ryan asked me what I wanted for my 40th birthday.  I thought about it and decided I wanted a couples trip in early 2015 after Levi was old enough to leave. We decided to go the week after Ryan turned 40 and just make it a big birthday celebration. I've never been to the Southeast (only as far as Texas and Virginia) and I'd always wanted to see what it was like.  My friend who lived in North Carolina for a few years INSISTED we visit Charleston for our first Southern exposure.  

It was probably the best trip I've ever taken in my life. And this is why:

1. vacationing with your husband of 17 happy years is just so dreamy.  You know each other so well that there's no guessing on what the other's thinking or what they'd like to do.  Basically, I dream of spending all day every day with him and to do it for 6 days was beyond fun.  He loves to be active, he loves to do whatever I want to do, he's learned over the years that spending money is worthwhile on vacations.  And he's so so so cute.

2. No kids.  I love them and my job as their mom so much, but not having to do anything according to a carpool or nap or crabby baby timetable was THE BEST. Plus you can do any activity you want, because you're not times-ing the cost or the effort by 8, just 2! (Thanks to my fabulous mom who loves to watch them, never seems stressed, barely even contacts us when we're gone and entertains and loves them better than I do.  I'm so lucky.)

3. I did tons of research and picked the best places to stay.  Our first 3 nights were in downtown Charleston at this fabulous place I found on AirBnB.  Cute little walkout basement room that was cozy, clean and central.  Plus: TWO CUTE BIKES that we used every day all day. The last two nights we spent in a relaxing resort on Isle of Palms and used the tennis courts and jogged on the beach two mornings in a row.

4. CHARLESTON.  People: It's the best city in the country.  I'm not kidding.  It had everything I could ever want in a vacation: history, walkable/bikeable streets, beauty, great weather, gorgeous buildings everywhere, tons of beaches, the BEST food, friendly people, easy transportation.  I honestly cried the morning we left because I was so sad to leave and go all the way across the country back home.

5. I need to talk about the food a little bit more:  My friend Jessica has a brother and sister in law who live in Charleston. This fabulous girl sent me paragraphs about what to do and what to eat and I read every word over and over.  I basically take picking the right food very seriously when I'm on vacation and she helped so much.  She sent her phone number and was the sweetest about responding to texts when I was trying to decide on restaurants and areas and what to order.  I am seriously indebted to her for her help.  It really made our vacation easier and awesome-er.

(Jeni's ice cream)

(Swig and Swine)

(Magnolia's fried chicken)

(Magnolia's Fried Green Tomatoes...officially the favorite thing I put in my mouth the whole trip)

Shrimp and Grits

We got to spend 36 hours in Atlanta with my brother and his cute family.  I'm having picture issues but I found this one of us with them in the church at which MLKJr preached. They are so far away and I felt so glad we took the time to drive to see them.

I seriously know this is obnoxious to gush and gush, but I just have to record it for my personal history.  It will bring my joy every time I remember it and I wanted to blog it before I forgot.

A rundown of what we did, in case you want to copy my trip...as you should:

Carriage ride through Charleston.  

Walking tour (using some random online app) South of Broad

Edisto beach (also known as Boneyard Beach):

Biking the Ravenal Bridge

Exploring Sullivan's Island

Drayton Hall Plantation:

The gorgeous drive through rural SC on the way to Edisto

Canoeing at Cypress Gardens
 (we saw 6 alligators...one was walking across the path 5 feet in front of us!!)

Happy 40th to US!!


Ashley C said...

The food looks ridiculous. I might have to make a trip there for that reason alone. Now I'm kicking myself for not visiting my parents when they lived there.

Nurse Graham said...

Love this trip re-cap. Dave doesn't think I'm being completely serious when I told him I want to retire in Charleston (well Folley Beach, but close enough). This re-cap of the awesomeness of this area confirms my retirement plans.

Glad you had a wonderful time.

Amy F. said...

Looks like a dreamy trip. I'm so glad you were able to do that and have such a great time together!!

Lauren in GA said...

I loved hearing about all of this and I also loved that you got to enjoy time with Ryan. It makes me so happy when married couples are blissfully in love and that you said that your hubby is, "so so so cute." Happy marriages warm the cockles of my stone cold heart and I am really a lucky girl to be so happily married, too. :)

I love all of the pictures...especially the one of you and he on the beach smiling at the camera. Lovely.

I simply have to visit there. I love that I was able to read this glowing review of a place that I can drive to easily :)