Pura Vida Charleston

NYE

Happy New Year...just a little late

AdventuresMegan WhitsonComment

Happy New Year friends…and happy February! Sorry for being MIA for all of January - life has been wonderful and super busy since starting the new year. I do want to recap my awesome New Years adventures in Denver for you!

I had the absolute best time spending a long weekend over New Years in Denver, CO. I was able to find a really affordable flight from SLC to Denver. I stayed with my friends Kelly and Mike in Northglenn - they were amazing hosts and there was no shortage of amazing food (shout to to Kelly for the BEST charcuterie boards ever) and drinks throughout the long weekend. Kelly and Mike are actually new friends (Mike is my best friend Dana’s cousin) and man, it makes me so happy to meet cool people that I know I will continue to be friend with for a long time. They both exude positive energy and were so welcoming and kind to everyone who came into their home - they cultivate good vibes, which I am all about :)

I’m so thankful to have brought in the new year with new friends and old - there was no shortage of laughter and love. What a beautiful end and beginning <3

I flew in on Friday night and hung out with Kelly and Mike enjoying some local beers and having great conversation. We had a chill Saturday and ran a few errands around Northglenn getting ready for our pre-party for String Cheese Incident. They played a 3 night run (Dec. 28, 29 and 31) at 1STBANK Center right outside of Denver. We didn’t go to the 1st show but we went to the shows on the 29th and 31st … HOLY COW you guys - AH-MAZING. Saturday night’s show made me that much more excited for the true New Years show :)

On Sunday morning, I picked Will up from the airport (he flew in from Charlotte) and then we all went to brunch together at Kachina Southwestern Grill <— HIGHLY recommend. Super cool vibes and the food was absolutely delicious. Will and I split the smoked salmon bagel to start and then I had the Cooky’s Breakfast Bowl with Mexican pork green chile, pica de gallo, breakfast potatoes and over easy eggs. It was so fresh and flavorful … I am a big fan of any and all brunch spots - especially those that have bottomless mimosas ;)

After breakfast, we came back to the house to watch the some Sunday football and then we headed to RiNo (River North Art District of Denver). Other than the shows, I think this was my favorite part of the trip - there were so many cool restaurants, breweries, shops and awesome street art. I could have spent all day wandering around and admiring all of the street art. We went to several breweries and I was pleasantly surprised and stoked to find out that O’Dell’s now had a Denver location :)

O’Dell’s was excellent (as always); we also went to Ratio Beerworks (the art work inside and out was INCREDIBLE) and OMF (Our Mutual Friend). I was really impressed with all of the beers that I had while we were out. Despite it being pretty chilly, the entire RiNo area was beautiful and the people were all really friendly.

We crashed early and hard after our mid-day brewery hopping. On New Years Eve, Will, Dana and I went to Atomic Cowboy for some absolutely BOMB breakfast biscuits - it was frigid and dumping snow out, so we stayed in after that. We had to save up our energy for some major SCI jammin’ that night. The String Cheese NYE show was nothing short of spectacular. The energy in the stadium was amazing and it was awesome ringing in 2019 with thousands of new friends ;) This was the best Cheese show I’ve ever been to - and that is saying something haha. They never disappoint…the light show, floating dolphins, huge bouncing balls and acrobatics were definitely next level.

We all spent New Years Day lounging at Kelly and Mike’s before we all caught late flights back out. Will flew back to SLC with me and Dana headed home to Charlotte. January was jammed pack with adventures and work with finishing up my 3rd clinical rotation. I’ll try to pop in soon to share a few more updates from my January travels (it included a few weekend trips and lots of weekend visitors)!

Thanks for reading. It’s hard to blog consistency right now because of my work schedule, boards studying and residency applications. My goal is to try to still have 1-2 new posts per month during this super busy season of life. As always, much love and Pura Vida <3

Tuesday Things & Sorry for Being MIA

Tuesday ThingsMegan WhitsonComment

Hello! Whew…I took an unintentional week off from blogging when I decided to battle some weird bug for almost all of last week and then spiked a crazy fever on Friday - so I decided to just lay low and recover for the rest of the weekend. I was feeling a lot better by Sunday but still didn’t want to over do it so I mostly stayed inside and did some reading, meal prepping and general relaxing. I’m finally feeling almost back to 100%. THANK GOD. Being sick is the worst…especially when you’re far away from your mama ;) and it’s cold outside!

Anyway, how goes it? Are you guys on the East Coast surviving the winter storm that came through this weekend? It’s so crazy how different parts of the country react to snow…we got 4-5” in SLC last weekend and it didn’t phase anyone a damn bit - that would SHUT DOWN Charleston for a week haha.

I’ll keep plugging away at gift guides and finishing up the Colorado recap but for now…Tuesday Things - super random version…

1. One of the “pros” of being cooped up in the house for most of the weekend is that I got to try several awesome new-to-me recipes :) I made these skinny banana bread muffins (I also added in some ripe avocado that I had!) and they are DELICIOUS…you get just the right amount of sweetness. I’m enjoying them with my morning coffee all week <3

GLORIOUS…highly recommend this recipe AND adding in a bit of avocado - which practically makes it a salad :)

GLORIOUS…highly recommend this recipe AND adding in a bit of avocado - which practically makes it a salad :)

2. Brace yourselves…this chili definitely lived up to the blog world hype! :) Crafted by the lovely Taralynn (who writes one of my favorite lifestyle blogs - check her out) - I mostly stuck to the recipe but added in some jalapeños, roasted the sweet potatoes in chili lime seasoning from TJ’s and added in black beans as well. I also sautéed all the veggies and turkey on the stove top and transferred everything to the crockpot to meld into chili-goodness together. If you’re looking for a new chili recipe, please give this one a try — and let me know what you think!

3. Okay…last recipe y’all. Sorry but I found some amazing ones this weekend and I just have to share :) Sara (my PT school friend and current roomie) and I whipped up some super yummy, SUPER easy pumpkin baked oatmeal from Kath at Kerf (another favorite food and lifestyle blog). I’ve been following her blog for 8ish years and I’ve never tried one of her recipes that I didn’t like :) She also recently shared a variation of this baked oatmeal with eggnog spices…I might have to try that one next!

4. I promise no more recipes…but I am going to share one more food find with you. If you are ever in SLC, you must must must try The Pie Pizzeria (they have several SLC locations). I consider myself a bit of a pizza connoisseur/snob ;) … and this pizza blew my mind. It was SO good. It had a medium thickness crust (which I’m not usually a fan of) but they crushed it. Sara and I ordered takeout pizza from here on Sunday night and we will most definitely be back! The service was also great and the employees were really friendly and joked around with us while we were picking up our order.

We split the Holy Shiitake Pie (Basil Pesto Sauce, Oven Roasted Chicken Breast, Fresh Shiitake and Champignon Mushrooms, Sicilian Spiced Tomatoes, Whole Roasted Garlic Cloves, Mozzarella Cheese and finished with a light drizzle of Truffle Oil), the Wise Guy Pie (hand tossed dough layered with a creamy mixture of whipped Cream Cheese, Fresh Spinach leaves, Artichoke Hearts, Chicken Breast, Mozzarella Cheese and a touch of tangy Marinara - Baked and topped with diced Tomatoes, fresh-cut Basil and a drizzle of sweet Balsamic reduction) and a chicken caesar salad. Um this was mouth orgasm worthy y’all. In fact maybe you should visit SLC just for this pizza ;)

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5. And to finish off my recipes and food talk, it’s only appropriate to throw out a beer recommendation (I mean duh. Are you surprised? No? Exactly.) I’ve had a few of Deschutes beers now and they’ve all been homeruns so far. Not sure why I’ve never had them until SLC…maybe they don’t distribute in the Carolina’s. Anyway, their Jubelale is my new favorite winter ale. I only bought one but I will definitely be grabbing a 6-pack the next time I’m at the liquor store … don’t get me started on Utah’s weird beer laws/only selling wine and beer over 4% in liquor stores/etc. *insert eye roll* ^^^See pic above for da cool bottle^^^

6. Let’s talk NYE plans…what are you doing?? I’m headed to Denver for a 3 night show run with my lover (Will) and my best lady (Dana) and I cannot wait! I’ve always wanted to be at a show on NYE and I’ll finally have my chance to be with 2 of my favorite people in one of my favorite cities <3 I’ll be seeing String Cheese Incident on 12/29 and 12/31 and STS9 on 12/30…it is going to be an epic 3 days of music y'all :)

7. I’m thinking of purchasing this cool neck “pillow” for my upcoming travels. The reviews are awesome and I like that it is so much more compact than a regular neck pillow. I’ll let you know if I pull the trigger and purchase it :)

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8. If you haven’t heard about it - please check out the Humane Society’s 13 Days of Giving <— this is the link for Utah but I think they are doing it nationwide. SUCH a cool way to give back this holiday season <3 I’m going to make a Costco run this weekend and then take supplies to our local Humane Society here in SLC…and of course, I’ll spend another hour ogling over all the sweet dogs and cats. I miss having a dog SOOO much. Evidence of cute (but pure hellion) dog below: Daisy is my sister’s pup but I feel like she’s halfway mine too since Kels and I lived together for so long. I miss her so much!

PS - Daisy has excellent taste in both music and brews ;)

9. And my MOST FAVORITE Tuesday Thing is…Daisy’s mama (aka my “baby” sister!) will be here in less than 48 hours!!! I cannot wait for a sister reunion and I can’t wait to show Kels all the reasons that I am already in love with Utah. My sister is truly one of my best friends and living in opposite parts of the country from one another has been a huge adjustment (we lived together for 2.5 years in Charleston). She has had my back through literally everything in life - she is my ride or die, my constant … … … can.not.wait. PS - she is literally the cutest, most gorgeous human being on the planet.

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That’s it friends…super random. Sorry again for ghosting - but I am on the mend and working on content all this week!

QUESTIONS…

What are YOU doing for New Years??

What are your travel must-haves?

What recipe have you tried and loved recently?

Happy Tuesday dears. Big Love & Pura Vida <3