Pura Vida Charleston

Mountains

Colorado Day #3

Road TripMegan WhitsonComment

Hi loves. Can you guys believe that we are over halfway through December?! What the heck is happening … I want to pause time so I can slow down and savor every single moment of this season <3 Also, I have done less than half of my Christmas shopping and haven’t shipped anything back to SC yet. I should probably get on that - like yesterday.

How was your weekend? My little sister and two of our good friends were in town for a few days and it was SO nice. We had a fun few days of hiking, exploring, shopping, eating and drinking our way around SLC and Park City. They also went skiing on Sunday in Park City but I wasn’t able to join for that - it looked super fun though :)

Okay…so this has been the vacation recap that NEVER ends. Sorry guys…tis the season - literally.

Where did we leave off? Ok…last morning in Boulder! Will and I went to breakfast at South Side Walnut Cafe and it did not disappoint. There coffee was excellent and it took me forever to order because everything on the menu looked so delicious. I got the Big Dill Eggs and the Boulder Latte. Our server was super friendly and made an already amazing experience even better.

After breakfast, we headed out to Rattlesnake Gulch Trailhead in Eldorado Canyon State Park. This may have been my favorite hike that we did in Colorado. There were incredible views the entire time (not just at the top). It was the perfect intensity…I loved everything about it and so did Will. I have a feeling this is probably pretty crowded in warmer months but it was perfect for us in early November…the trail was not crowded at all. It was in the low 30’s but we definitely got warm in the sun once we were moving. I’d love to come back to Eldorado Canyon State Park and do some climbing as well - I spotted several sexy routes ;) I think you can do sport climbing and bouldering here.

Gorgeous, right?? The pictures don't even do it justice…it is truly breathtaking. After our hike, we headed up the road to Fort Collins - but of course, we stopped in Longmont to check out a brewery or two ;)

Our first stop was Wibby Brewing (suggested to us by the girl in the gift shop at Avery). Wibby is known for their American-influenced, German-style lagers. This ended up being one of my favorite breweries of the trip - cool vibe, SUPER friendly/personable staff, awesome selection of well done brews AND a shuffle board table…Will and I are big shuffle board fans ;)

Next up was Left Hand Brewing Co which we were super excited about…sadly, while the beer was awesome (which we knew it would be), the ambience of the brewery and the staff left a lot to be desired. Womp womp. The brewery was smaller than I expected and really dark inside - I am a lover the LIGHT so I wasn’t feeling the cave-vibe I got. That combined with some very bored, uninterested in patrons but super interested in their phones staff = we finished our flights and peaced out. Oh well, I still love their beer.

We headed on up the road and got settled into our Airbnb in Fort Collins which was AWESOME. We actually stayed about 15 minutes outside of downtown Fort Collins in Loveland. We rested up and played with our Airbnb owner’s adorable dog for awhile and then headed out to New Belgium. I’ve loved New Belgium’s beer for a long time so I was stoked to check out the brewery and it did not disappoint. It had all my checkmarks for a great brewery: incredible beer (obviously), funky/fun vibe and friendly and knowledgable staff. Sadly we didn’t get to take a tour (apparently they book out like 2 months in advance!).

We finished off our evening by grabbing nachos and wings at a sports pub in downtown Fort Collins to watch the Panthers game - I can’t remember the name but it was a cool little dive bar. Anyway, that wraps up day 3…hiking and breweries … our 2 favorite things ;)

I hope you have had a wonderful start to your week! Only 7 days until Christmas!!!

I’m off to bake a ridiculous amount of Christmas cookies <3

Big Love & Pura Vida

Weekend Recap

Weekend AdventuresMegan WhitsonComment

Hey, hey. Can you guys believe that it is almost the end of October?! How the heck did that happen? October is my favorite month of the year and I’m a little bummed that it’s almost over…BUT that means that it’s almost time to spend some time out West! Onward and upward :)

I had a fairly low-key weekend up in Greenville with Will and some friends. Will took me on a surprise date to The Trappe Door, a Belgian restaurant in downtown Greenville. It was sooo good and I loved the vibe of the place. It is below street level so you feel like you’re in an old world tavern. Very cool…and by far the best Moscow mule I have ever had in my life! They brew their own ginger beer in house :)

The lighting was not ideal for professional level iPhone photos, obviously ;) Will and I split the Wild Mushroom Vol Au Vont (seasonal wild mushrooms cooked in a white wine and garlic cream sauce served in a puff pastry boat) to start. Then he ordered the steak frites and I had the mariniere moules frites - aka mussels in a white wine broth and fries; it may sound elementary but it was absolutely delicious.

The Trappe Door is now in my Top 10 Greenville restaurant experiences <3

Saturday was spent photo styling, picture taking and editing for my Posh page…that will eventually be included as part of this site…one day haha. We also watched the Tigers CRUSH Florida State which was incredibly satisfying (I remember the days when we lost to them on the reg very well haha). I was on a bit of an emotional rollercoaster all day because of the stress of the upcoming move and because hormones are a real b*tch sometimes…I’m blessed with a very patient fella ;)

We had a fun game night with friends that night, including Settlers of Catan, ping pong and darts. It was a perfect chill evening. PS - if you have never played Settlers of Catan, it is my favorite board game of all time and I highly recommend it :) We’ve been known to play 3-4 games in a row before.

We went up to Hendersonville, NC, on Sunday to go to Grandad’s Apple Orchard. On the way there, we stopped at HenDough Chicken & Donuts for brunch. Will and I split a pumpkin spice donut to start (are you surprised? haha). The food was what brunch dreams are made of and the biscuits lived up the hype. I really loved the upstairs area too…there were lots of windows - I’m a sucker for natural light :) Some of their decorations included coffee bags from Costa Rica too…obviously I was a big fan!

Everyone enjoyed some good ole redneck fun shooting the apple gun at the orchard ;) I also got some cider spice donuts (oh my gosh…heavenly) and apple cider to take to Cat and Dave. After the orchard, Will and our friends headed back to Greenville and I left for Charleston. Another lovely Sunday evening with Catherine and Dave, enjoying the crispness in the air on the back patio with bourbon and apple cider :) We’re also almost done with The Haunting of Hill House - one episode left!

I hope you have a wonderful last few days of October…I’m planning on having at least one more pumpkin spice latte ;)

Questions…

Pumpkin spice lattes…yay or nay?

Yay. Obvi.

Are you dressing up for Halloween? What are you going to be?

No costumes this year unfortunately :(

Any Colorado hiking or brewery recommendations? :)

Mountain Weekend Recap...

Weekend AdventuresMegan WhitsonComment

Hi friends! Happy Monday - I hope you had a wonderful, restful weekend and enjoyed some cooler weather!

I had a perfect mountain weekend up on Bald Mountain near Weaverville, NC - we were about 45 minutes outside of Asheville. The fella and I met one of our favorite “couple friends” at a gorgeous mountain house that our friend Tracy’s family graciously allowed us to enjoy for the weekend :) Matt is one of my good friends from PT school and Tracy is his wife - and significantly better half…just kidding, Matt…mostly ;) Matt and Tracy are who actually first got me interested in triathlons! We share a love of all things active, outdoor adventures and delicious food, wine and craft beer with them…essentially all of their favorite things are our favorite things too :) It makes for a fun weekend.

I’ll let the pictures mostly speak for themselves. If you are looking for a new location for a weekend mountain adventure though, I highly recommend finding a cabin or Airbnb near Weaverville, NC. Their downtown area is adorable with lots of fun, quirky shops, an amazing bakery, two breweries and a pizza shop with some to-die-for thin crust, wood-fired pizzas <3 There is awesome hiking along the AT with spectacular views. AND it is totally still feasible to take a day trip into Asheville! That is a win-win. Hopefully we’ll be back sooner than later!

Matt and I met at his parent’s house on our way up and rode the rest of the way together. Will beat us there by an hour or so and he and Tracy greeted us with a glass of wine :) Can you tell we like wine justttt a little? ;)

We all slept in a little later than initially planned on Saturday morning because we stayed up late catching up the night before. Tracy made us breakfast the next morning: hash browns, sauted greens, scrambled eggs and sliced avocado (Trader Joe’s EBTB seasoning was my contribution…bc I’m obsessed and travel with it everywhere —> super cool kid over here you guys). It was perfect fuel for our morning hike…

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Misty mountain morning views from the deck…

Misty mountain morning views from the deck…

And by hike…I mean, semi-casual 2 mile stroll through the woods. We were all still moving a little slow from staying up so late and from more than a few glasses of wine ;) Totally worth it though. This was a meandering nature trail close to the mountain house in Wolf Laurel. I would definitely like to come back to do some trail running here!

Next up: Weaverville! We decided to venture into Weaverville on Saturday afternoon after our morning hike. We walked around in some SUPER cute shops and I had to remind myself that I am (essentially) living out of my car until May so I do NOT need to buy all the super cute knick-knacks…sigh. I did buy a felt, crafted yellow bird that I’ll hang on our Christmas tree one day and some specialty popcorn - so glorious. I am a sucker for anything that I can turn into a Christmas ornament and coffee mugs when I’m traveling. So then when you are choosing a mug in the morning or when you’re decorating your Christmas tree, every piece has a story and a memory behind it :)

After strolling around and taking in downtown, we popped into the two new-to-us breweries: Zebulon Artisan Ales and Eluvium Brewing Co. They were both innovative, small batch brewing companies and I definitely recommend checking them both out if you are in the area and enjoy craft beer <3

We rounded out our afternoon with a late lunch at Blue Mountain Pizza & Brew Pub. Y’ALL. Yes, we already had a few craft beers so we were primed for some pizza but this pizza 100% delivered - no pun intended ;) Will and I split the caesar salad (romaine, shaved parmesan, herbed croutons, Caesar dressing, diced tomato & candied bacon) and the Pesto Perfection (parmesan crust, pesto sauce, grilled chicken, artichoke hearts, feta). It. was. glorious.

Will, Matt and I all tried their house craft beer as well - we all ended up getting an 8 oz. pour of the Captain Trips Ale, a 9.5% Belgian Tripel…hence, the 8 oz. pour ;) If you are in Weaverville, please check this local spot out - they have nailed the beer AND pizza game.

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Hi beautiful friend :)

Hi beautiful friend :)

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A picture of a lone slice bc I may or may not have already devoured the rest of the pizza before I remembered to take a picture…

A picture of a lone slice bc I may or may not have already devoured the rest of the pizza before I remembered to take a picture…

The rest of Saturday afternoon was devoted to another short 2 mile hike up to Bald Mountain where we burned off approximately 1 slice of pizza and half a beer for our efforts ;) Bald Mountain is part of the Appalachian Trail and we were able to take in 360’ mountain views. There is something about the mountains that just humbles and inspires me - it can make me feel so small yet so connected to this land I get to call home. Beautiful views with beautiful friends…life does not get much sweeter.

That second to last picture of the boys cracks me up…they were making fun of me and Tracy for taking a “holding hands with mountains in the distance” picture ;) Also, I love that Rocky (Tracy and Matt’s dog) joined in for the last boy’s picture.

My favorite part of the day was when we got back to the house. We sat on the back porch overlooking the Blue Ridge and took in a magnificent sunset. As the day faded into night, I was overwhelmed by the love and sweet friendship of these 3 people. We bundled up in our warmest, coziest clothes and stayed up far too late sitting on the porch, drinking yummy pumpkin beers and enjoying wonderful conversation. My heart is so full and I feel so lucky to be able to do life with these guys…and Rocky, of course ;)

This is my FAVORITE pumpkin beer :)

This is my FAVORITE pumpkin beer :)

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Sunday morning was spent in a mild state of sadness as we prepared to leave this beautiful place. I’m so happy for the time that we had though and look forward to even more adventures in the future. Matt and I rode back to his parents and watched the last half of the Panthers/Redskins game - he’s a Redskins fan and I’m a Panthers fan…sad day for me. Then it was time to get on the road back to Beaufort. The weekend was far too short but it sure was sweet.

Only 3 more weeks in the low country and then I’ll be headed out west to Salt Lake City. Send me your recommendations! Happy Monday loves. I hope you have a wonderful, joy-filled week <3

Currently... (and Happy First Friday)

CurrentlyMegan WhitsonComment

Hi friends! Happy First Friday!

Two semesters ago in PT school, our class schedule worked out to where we didn’t have class on Friday’s so we (my classmates and professors) started calling Thursday our “First Friday” and it stuck! And makes me smile happily bc it reminds me of 62 wonderful, talented friends that are all across the country right now kicking ass on clinicals :)

Pro tip: if you want to see beautiful men with their shirts off on the reg, go to PT school ;)

Pro tip: if you want to see beautiful men with their shirts off on the reg, go to PT school ;)

Anywho…how has your week been? Flying by? Dragging slowly and painfully? Whatever the answer…put a pep in your step bc tomorrow is the REAL Friday! I’m heading up to the mountains with some dear friends and my fella for a few days of hiking, farmer’s marketing, craft beer drinking, board game playing and yummy food eating - cannot wait! I think I am most excited about the 60’ weather YESSS. We are rocking a balmy 81’ today here in Beaufort with 1000% humidity. Needless to say, I am slightly ecstatic for some fall weather - even if only for a weekend.

Alright moving onto today’s post which will be a monthly (maybe weekly, we shall see) topic on what is going on “currently.” I’m borrowing this idea from Tracy at Shutterbean because I think everything she does is absolutely amaze-balls (I know I hate myself for using that word too. I am a closet frat bro apparently). I kind of want to be just like her when I grow up and I love her Currently posts. I actually started using the same format in my journal this year so I’m carrying it on over to the blog-o-sphere (God, sorry. My verbage is truly bro today and I can’t seem to stop it…must be those First Friday vibes).

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Good Vibes Only

Folly Beach, SC

CURRENTLY …

INSPIRED BY: Strong women (check out this podcast episode with Sophia Bush - I want to be her best friend), men who support and respect strong women, my patients who keep fighting against incredibly odds — I am humbled to get to walk alongside them <3

WATCHING: Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown (RIP - still so sad over his loss), Ozark (Anyone else watching?? Jason Bateman is incredible!)

READING: The Throne of Glass series (Holy cow…I just finished this series a few weeks ago. I literally did nothing other than eat, sleep, go to work and READ for about 2 weeks while I flew through this book series. I have not been that obsessed with a series since Harry Potter. HIGHLY RECOMMEND)

THINKING ABOUT: Salt Lake City (where I will be in less than a month for my next rotation!), thinking of and sending prayers for those affected by the hurricanes recently, how to become more disciplined in my yoga practice (I have been soooo slack recently)

LISTENING TO: Podcasts like crazy recently - a few of my current favorites: Unspoken with Sean Brock, Joe Rogan with Morgan Fallon, Dr. Death (seriously terrifying) and Oprah with Pico Iyer (so inspiring); and I’ve had my YOGA playlist on repeat at night recently

DREAM LIFE: Crazy dreams recently - I’ve been taking 5-HTP to help me sleep and it is wonderful but it also gives me some super out there, lucid dreams; I’ll try to remember some of them to share next time ;)

GRATEFUL FOR: the opportunity to start this blog…it has seriously been a dream for a long time and I’m thankful for everyone who takes the time to read and comment. Thanks guys <3

I will be on this porch looking at this view in less than 24 hours &lt;3

I will be on this porch looking at this view in less than 24 hours <3


Questions…

Any Salt Lake City must see/do recommendations? Or recommendations of things to see/places to stop on the way out there?

What are you reading right now? What do you recommend?

What are your weekend plans?!