Roadtrip Pensacola

This weekend is another summer weekend for the books!  Even though it didn't go quite as planned, we ended up having an awesome weekend and spending time with wonderful people! Rob was off on Friday so we woke up early to work out, shower, and hop right in the car, already wearing our swimsuits.  After three hours in the car, we were ready to head straight to the beach!  We grabbed fresh juices from Evermans (the carrot, pineapple, ginger is so refreshing!) and soaked up some sun on Pensacola Beach.  The weather was perfect and it was so nice to just relax all day.
Things to do in Pensacola
We grabbed dinner at Wild Roots before leaving the beach and, as always, it left me wondering why there aren't restaurants like this everywhere?!?  I had a gluten/grain/soy free pizzetta topped with baked apples, dates, bacon, and goat cheese and followed that off with a banana based soft serve with almond butter and raw cacao nibs!  Everything was so delicious and left you feeling satisfied without feeling sick.  If only they would open a Wild Roots style cafe in Meridian!
Healthy food options in Pensacola
Saturday honestly felt like we were back living in Pensacola.  We stuck to our usual Saturday morning routine of Bodacious and the farmer's market and it was comforting to see that not much had changed.  Pensacola really is such a charming little town!  I just love it!  We spent the rest of the afternoon on Barrancas Beach on base and even got in a quick yoga workout on our own private section of the beach.  We had sushi for dinner at Nom and then headed to Flounder's for the wetting down party.
Beach on NAS Pensacola
In the whole time we lived in Pensacola, I never went to Flounder's at night (only during the day or for dinner) but I had heard that it gets crazy.  It definitely did not disappoint -- the place was packed, the throwback band was awesome, and we had a blast.  We ended up spending the entire night hanging out with a bunch of our friends from Meridian, who were all in town for the week.  Typical, right?  ;)  We kept joking that we could have had the exact same night back in Mississippi...but it just wouldn't have been the same!
Wetting Down Party in Pensacola
Wetting Down Party in Pensacola
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Sunday morning we slept in late (thank goodness for hotels that allow late check out) and spent the day shopping.  It's funny how small I used to think that mall was and now I'm convinced it has everything ;)  Our last stop was Joe Patti's to grab some fresh seafood to take home for the week.  Good seafood seems just about impossible to find in Meridian so when you are that close to the most fabulous, Gulf Coast seafood, you have to take advantage.  Joe Patti's will pack your cooler full of ice so that your food safely survives the trip home.  I can't wait for some delicious, fresh dinners this week!
joe pattis pensacola
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Hope your weekend was equally as wonderful!

What I'm Reading And Eating: Bowl + Spoon

Sometimes a hearty bowl of delicious, seasonal flavors is exactly what I crave.  A trip to the farmer's market always lends the perfect ingredients.  Ripe tomatoes, basil, and fresh mozzarella in the summer; savory butternut squash, kale, and smoked sausage in the fall.  The thing I love about bowls is that no recipe is needed.  A little of this, a little of that...the more colors and flavors, the better!  Bowls are the perfect way to make a "pantry clean out" meal feel indulgent.
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It's no secret that bowls are a favorite in our house.  This power bowl was a staple for us all fall and Shakeology/Acai bowls (similar to this books's tropical smoothie bowl!) are a summer morning favorite.  When I saw The Sprouted Kitchen's new cookbook, Bowl + Spoon, I knew that I had to check it out.  First of all, the cookbook is gorgeous.  I am a sucker for beautiful food photography and this book does not disappoint.  While some of the recipes were a little different than our tastes, I loved the emphasis on using excellent ingredients to make uncomplicated, delicious food.  There are so many recipes that I cannot wait to adjust and cater to our tastes.
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The book is broken up into sections : morning bowls, side bowls, sweet bowls and the recipe I am going to share can probably fit into both the morning and sweet bowl category (although it is listed as a morning recipe!)
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Flourless Stone Fruit Breakfast Crumble
Serves 6

I’m tucking this into the breakfast chapter because it’s a pretty virtuous crumble that could also pass as dessert with the right crowd. It’s loads of lightly maple-sweetened fresh fruit and the crumble is gluten- and dairy-free, keeping your whole bowl tasting rather light. As dessert, I top it with coconut sorbet; but for a morning bowl, a hearty dollop of goat’s milk yogurt is a repeat favorite. You can find quinoa flakes online or at health food stores near the oats or whole grains. They are a great wheat-free, high-protein product that can be cooked into a breakfast cereal or adapted into some baked good recipes. If you cannot find them, give quick rolled oats a blitz in the food processor to get a very coarse-ground oat flour that works here as well. I spice this with vanilla, but if you are partial to cardamom, I really like a pinch of that in with the filling as well.

2½ pounds assorted stone fruit
(nectarines, peaches, plums, cherries)
2 tablespoons orange juice
3 tablespoons coconut sugar or natural cane sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 vanilla bean, or ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon sea salt

1 cup quinoa flakes or coarse oat flour
1 cup almond meal
½ cup slivered almonds
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon sea salt
⅓ cup maple syrup
⅓ cup coconut oil, just warmed to a liquid
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 375ºF.

Wash, pit, and slice the stone fruit  into 1-inch wedges. Put them in a large mixing bowl, add the orange juice, coconut sugar, cornstarch, vanilla bean seeds, and salt and toss everything to mix.

For the crumble, in a large bowl, combine the quinoa, almond meal, almonds, cinnamon, and salt. Add the maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla and mix again.

Pour the fruit mixture into a 2½ quart baking dish or an 8-inch square pan and spread the crumble evenly on top, tucking some into the pockets. Shake the pan a little just to help everything settle. Bake on the middle rack for 30 minutes until the top is crisp and browned. Set aside to cool for at least 15 minutes and enjoy with yogurt or ice cream, as you wish.

I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review but all opinions are my own!

Blueberry Picking at Johnson's Farm

There is not much that would have me jumping out of bed at 6 o clock on a Thursday morning but blueberry picking is definitely one of them!  A fellow military spouse told us about a wonderful blueberry farm where you could go and pick blueberries.  I was so excited and put it right on our summer bucket list.
blueberry picking in meridian ms
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things to do in meridian ms
The heat and humidity in Mississippi is no joke so I knew we would have to go early if we were going to survive.  Johnson farm is open from 7am to 7:30pm, Tuesday through Saturday, so when Rob's flight schedule came out saying that he was off the following day, we made plans for some early morning picking.

We headed out to the farm when it opened at 7.  It was a pretty drive and the sun wasn't too high in the sky yet.  We were greeted by Joe, the owner of the farm, and given a quick run down of the shadiest spots to pick and the most efficient methods.
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things to do this summer in meridian mississippi
We had almost the entire farm to ourselves and had a blast!  The farm is beautiful -- a hidden little oasis in Meridian.  Even at 7am, the air was thick and humid (as you can tell from my hair in some of these pictures!) but there were lots of shady spots.  We picked for about an hour and a half before bringing our buckets up to the scale to be weighed.
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I cannot believe how cheap the blueberries were!  We picked 11 lbs of blueberries and it only cost is $10.50!  Considering a tiny package of blueberries at the commissary can run almost $4, this is a steal!
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Blueberry muffins, blueberry pie, blueberry pancakes....the recipe ideas are almost as endless as this 11 lbs of fresh blueberries!!! ;)

Blue Wahoos

I would be completely content if every summer weekend looked like this one!  We had a totally spontaneous weekend and while I am usually much more of a planner, it worked out for the best!
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Friday night we went to Harvest Grill for dinner with Kyleigh and Frank.  Saturday morning, we woke up, had breakfast, worked out, and didn't really have any plans.  I started thinking about a conversation I had with my mom earlier in the week about how I was never going to look back at this time and wish that we had traveled less.  The next thing I knew, we were throwing clothes in a bag and jumping in the car for a last minute trip to the beach.  Let's face it, the first officially day of summer calls of sunshine, salty air, and sandy toes!
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On the drive down, we bought tickets to the Blue Wahoos baseball game.  This was our first game of the season and I couldn't wait to see the new changes.  With a gorgeous stadium right on the bay, how could the games get any better?!  NEW FOOD!  This year, in addition to typical ballpark food, the Blue Wahoos stadium incorporated a bunch of local restaurant foods options.  They now serve everything from oysters behind home plate to traditional McGuire's Irish Wakes.  So Pensacola and so wonderful!  We had to split and try a little bit of everything.
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Salad from So Chopped (inside of The Bodacious Olive)
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Angelino from The Bodacious Brew
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Sushi including the most interesting and delicious strawberry sushi roll!
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Sunday morning we woke up early to check out the new Bikram studio in Pensacola.  While I've heard great things about it (and tried other hot yoga classes), this was my first Bikram hot yoga class.  90 minutes, 26 poses, and totally invigorating!  I don't normally sweat much but needless to say I was dripping in sweat the entire class.  I wish we had a studio in Meridian and definitely plan to check out another class when we are back in town.
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From yoga, we grabbed iced coffees and bagel sandwiches before heading straight to the beach.  It was a hot but gorgeous day and I was completely content just soaking up the sunshine all day long.  We made a few quick trips to Target and The Fresh Market before making the drive back to Mississippi.  I would be sad except we already have our hotel room booked in Pensacola for next weekend!  Yup, I think every summer weekend should look like this ;)

Weekend Recap

Although Rob had a Saturday night flight, this weekend was a great one.  We stayed in Meridian and spent some quality time with friends and really just appreciated the slow pace of life here.  I didn't take many pictures this weekend but here is a quick weekend recap according to instagram!
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//  Fresh produce from our garden!  Of course, the tomatoes had to be used for a tomato sandwich, which sparked the debate: Hellman's or Duke's?!
//  Surprise belated birthday dinner with the girls at Harvest Grill because we will take an excuse for a girls night!
//  Date night in!  Rob and I put on music, poured some wine, and made The Fish House famous grits a ya ya on Friday night and had a blast!
//  Bonfire + S'mores at Kyleigh and Frank's!
//  No Saturday is complete without a trip to the Farmer's Market (especially the first Saturday of the month since that's the big one in Meridian!)
//  Breakfast in bed is a weekend necessity
//  We caravanned over to Philadelphia and spent all day Sunday at the waterpark with friends.  From gates open to gates closed, we ran from slide to slide like little kids and had a blast!  Thank goodness for season passes!

Hope your weekend was fabulous!

Happily Ever Kerns : My BFF is married!

A bunch of iPhone photos from a shared photo stream can't possibly do Molly's gorgeous wedding justice but this fun weekend deserves a quick recap!  (You can see pics from her shower and bachelorette earlier this year HERE)
destination wedding clearwater beach florida
wedding at the pier 60 hotel
Rob's leave was only approved Friday through Sunday so Thursday I flew down to Clearwater Beach on my own and headed straight to the tiki bar to meet up with Molly, Maggie, and Anna who had already arrived.  We had drinks, lounged in the sun, and it was awesome to have some low key time to catch up before everyone arrived.  Thursday night we had sunset drinks at the rooftop bar of the Pier 60 Hotel and then did dinner at the Brown Boxer.
wedding at the clearwater yacht club
wedding at the clearwater yacht club
Friday morning I went for a quick run, had breakfast at the hotel and headed straight to the pool.  Weddings are so much fun because everyone coming into town is so excited and just ready to celebrate the bride and groom.  Rob got in around 3pm and I headed to the rehearsal with the other bridesmaids.  After the rehearsal, Molly's parents generously hosted a welcome barbecue for everyone at the Clearwater Yacht Club.   The location was gorgeous and I loved seeing and catching up with everyone who was in town.
wedding updo ideas
lilly pulitzer bridesmaid dresses
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I knew Saturday was going to be a packed day for me so I told Rob to make a tee time and go golfing in the morning.  Unfortunately the airlines lost his luggage and while his suitcase made it back to the hotel, his golf clubs never did.  I grabbed an iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts (directly across the street - score!) and then headed up to the bridal suite to get my hair done.  It was a relaxing day of drinking mimosas and doing hair/makeup and reminded me of college days getting ready together in the tridelt house.  When it was time, we took the trolley over to the Carlouel Yacht Club to finish getting ready and take pictures before the ceremony.
lilly pulitzer bridesmaid dresses
lilly pulitzer bridesmaid dresses
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sunset wedding carlouel yacht club
sunset wedding carlouel yacht club
The wedding was absolutely gorgeous and like I said these pictures can't do it justice!  We ate, drank, danced, and celebrated Molly and Shawn until the very end!  Every detail was well thought-out and I loved seeing all of her signature touches.
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hilton clearwater beach review
Luckily, we booked an evening flight home on Sunday so we were able to spend the day on the beach.  A couple of rounds of piña coladas with the newlyweds was the perfect way to end the weekend.  I am so so happy for Molly and Shawn and so honored to have been a part of their special day!

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