Thursday, January 9, 2014

Birthday Explorations in Greenville, SC

This past Saturday (Jan. 4th!) was my birthday. My sweet husband came to me the day before and asked what city I would like to explore for a day trip the next day and suggested Greenville, SC. Not gonna lie, I think he sneaked a peak in my 2014 bucket list because I swear I never told him that I was hoping to go there sometime this year to check it out. We had heard great things about it from many of our friends who had been there and so of course I immediately jumped on board. We googled the city and came up with a list of sights and breweries to hit up while we were in town. 

Once we got there we grabbed a much needed iced coffee at a small place called "Coffee To a Tea." I loved the clever name and their coffee was very good despite the fact that I made the mistake of getting iced coffee when it was 30 degrees outside. Yes, even to us transplanted northerners this is what we consider COLD now! (My northern friends and family are probably shaking their heads in shame right now, hehe.) Then we were off to the Liberty Bridge in what is known as Falls Park that we had heard so highly about. And boy does the name do it justice! The falls were gorgeous and everywhere you looked there was a beautiful view. 

 The bridge itself was pretty amazing too. It is a suspension bridge ( I believe) and has really great lines. It gave me the opportunity to work on my skills with my brand new Canon 50mm f/1.8 lens that Brandon got me for Christmas! It literally is night and day in comparison to using my Canon 18-55mm lens that has always been my go to lens. I love how crisp the images are and how you can really focus on the forefront of the photo and leave the rest blurry in the background if that's what you're going after. 

Gotta have the layers! "Ohh you both have laaayers. Cake has layers! Everybody likes cake!" Name that quote...

...Shrek, anyone?!?

Handsome Hubby.

Brandon and I really love exploring new places and cities. I think over the last four years we have gotten really good at finding the touristy spots as well as the less known wonders in each city we go to. We LOVED Greenville! If you ever get a chance to visit, it is a really clean and pretty city with an artsy edge that I always love in a new place. 

Can you see the focus vs. blurry aspect in this photo?! Isn't it awesome?!
Off to the side of Falls Park is this really amazing tree with an exposed root structure. It was seriously one of my favorite things we saw all day. I know, I'm a nature obsessor, but it was really neat in person! We couldn't resist taking some pictures next to/ on it. (P.S. I didn't see the No Climbing on These Roots sign until after I had already climbed on them. Oops!)

I am still slightly (okay, SERIOUSLY) obsessed with my combat boots. These babies are from Target and they are my favorite Target purchase since before Thanksgiving! They are so comfy and casual and yet they dress an outfit up just enough with an edge to it. All day long Brandon heard, "make sure to get my boots in the picture!" "No really, do a long ways photo so you can see my boots." It must have gotten to his head by this point because he actually got a really great image of them above! AmIRight?! He's getting pretty good with a camera if I do say so myself. Must have a good teacher. ;) 

Next, it was off to lunch at the Brick Street Cafe. Warning, when you walk into this place you are going to want to order a cake entirely for yourself... No joke. It is half bakery, half cafe, and the aroma from the bakery was like 10 times better than those cake batter candles they sell at Yankee Candle. We settled with one piece of the "Best Chocolate Cake You've Ever Had" after lunch. And boy, was this an understatement. It was the most delectable piece of melt in your mouth goodness EVER. As the waiter who brought us chocolate cake in Portugal 3 years ago said, it was "death by chocolate with extra death."

Is your mouth watering yet?!
 Once we were full of food, we could move on to the alcohol part of the day. We walked the Main St. and explored some of the shops where I found these adorable letter books at Anthroplogie. They're $20 each but I'm thinking I might have to find a way to DIM (do it myself) for wayy cheaper. Can you find Waldo, errr... Brandon?? 

We then hit up the Dark Corner Distillery on N. Main St. Now, I am not a liquor person by any means but any time there is a $3 tasting with a free shot glass, I'm in! Surprisingly, I did try (baby portions) of the six samples of Whiskey they had. While my gag reflex got a good workout, I kept it all down and was very proud of myself. However, I will not be a Whiskey girl (like my friend Jes) anytime soon! Beer and wine for me please!! 

The inside of the distillery was well worth the time to go check out though. 

Then it was off to the Breweries on our list. We checked out Quest and Blue Ridge Breweries and had a great time at both. I got a new growler to add to my collection at Quest Brewery and a new t-shirt from Blue Ridge. We also ended up eating dinner at Blue Ridge and I had some amazing ribs. 

All in all, it was a fantastic birthday thanks to my hubby for knowing my love of explorations and adventures! I think 24 in 2014 is going to be a good year! Nothing like a bunch of even numbers to start off the year right. 


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