Culture · Events · mental health · music · relationships · Travel · Wellness

Life Lately, Bonnaroo 2017, and a Summer Vibes Playlist

 

 

What a sight for sore eyes this screen is. I have missed my blog. I have missed you, dear friends. All of it.

Yet every time I have sat down to post, I have been overwhelmed with anxiety, which is not a feeling I typically associate with this blog. I planned to take a week off for Bonnaroo, only to hop directly back on the blog train to tell you all about my wild adventures and hear about some of yours from while I was away from my little blog community.

Then last week happened.

Last week was just a continuous stream of weird, unfavorable events for my family. Some of these events are laughable, and some are quite serious. There are some major health problems plaguing a couple of family members, which means I’ve been “ON” more constantly, and really trying to help out with my nieces and nephews, since it is summer break for them.

In light of some of the bad things going on, I have enjoyed being around my family so much over the past week and a half. Last night, I spent an awesome few hours with my youngest niece, who is almost three years old. We ate strawberries, tried on sparkly jewelry, and played hide and seek until sundown!

The caveat to this refreshing time spent with family is that when I finally have a few quiet moments to myself at night…I am exhausted and a little disoriented because my routine has been let go with abandon. I’ve not just been absent from [W]IT GIRL, but from social media in general. I’ll sometimes go nine hours without touching my phone because I’ve been so engaged in everything from handling a damaged AC unit (4 days, no AC, 90 degree weather), to prepping for my nephew’s birthday party, to helping care for my sister’s ill pup. In a way, unplugging has been rejuvenating. But also, it has interfered with a blog routine that has been manageable, successful, and fulfilling.

Cue anxiety—you see, normally I pour myself into each post, and it is planned, edited, and ready to go days prior to when it is to be posted. Bonnaroo obviously got in the way of my usual weekend workflow; however, when I would sit down to catch up, I’d find myself exhausted, concerned about giving you less than my best.

[W]IT GIRL started over two years ago as a way to play with concepts I was picking up from my Technical Writing courses during undergrad. Over time I’d held onto it hoping to one day turn it into something valuable. 2017 has been my year to create quality, authentic content, and the notion that perhaps creating content while exhausted would take away from the progress I’ve made over the past half of a year opened the flood gates for waves of anxiety.

After much internal deliberation, I decided that while I should not let exhaustion rob my blog of quality content, exhaustion does not make my writing any less authentic. If anything, it makes it more authentic.

So here I am. I’m not as caffeinated as I’d prefer, but I am showing up, and sometimes that’s the beginning and end of everything.

 

Let’s talk Bonnaroo.

Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival

As I mentioned in my previous post, I first attended Bonnaroo in 2011 and then again in 2012. Those were two of the most magical experiences of my life, and I truly believe seeing Radio Head live and witnessing Thom York’s sweet moves up close impacted who I am today. These glorious memories had me pretty pumped to return to the farm!

Five years later, Bonnaroo is a different crowd. A little younger than I recall. Yes, I am a good bit older than when I first attended; however, I did not see any of the older hippies who hop festivals as a lifestyle. I have vivid memories of such individuals from my first trips to Bonnaroo. This time around, it definitely gave off a more trendy Coachella vibe, but Benny had nothing to compare it to, and I wasn’t about to let the difference throw a wrench my good time, so we just went with it.

We arrived early Thursday afternoon and set up our campsite. Each morning we’d chill at the campsite for a few hours before trekking into Centeroo for the music and activities.

Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival

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There were only a couple of acts Thursday that I recognized, so we really set out to explore and discover awesome artists. We got mighty close for The Orwells. I was so pumped to get Benny in such a good spot for our first set, only to immediately regret this moments into their first song. I failed to realize that The Orwells have a rather rowdy following who “dance” in an aggressive matter with little attention to their surroundings. We immediately backtracked our way to higher ground, safe from the mosh pit.

My sunglasses were the only casualty. We are thankful for their sacrifice. Could have been a limb or a phalange or a face instead. Jesus took the wheel on that one.

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Throughout the course of the weekend, Benny and I had a blast being moved by the incredible talent that swept Bonnaroo stages. A few of my favorite acts were Glass Animals, Tove Lo, Tegan and Sara, Chance the Rapper, and Lorde. And that’s the condensed list.

My freckles came out to play. We gained Chaco tan lines. We walked until our feet were numb. We came back sun-kissed, sleepy, and free-spirited. ‘Twas a good time, most definitely.

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Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival

I’m not sure when I’ll next return to the farm, but I urge you, [W]IT GIRLS, go see some live music this summer. Make it a priority. And when you do, don’t film it all on your phone. Be there. Be enchanted. Be present.

You can shop my adorable off-the-shoulder swimsuit here. I received so many compliments on it!

Last, but certainly not least…..I’m gifting you a Summer Vibes playlist that is Bonnaroo 2017 inspired, since it is OFFICALLY SUMMER!!

Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festivalxx-Lona

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Culture · Events · huntsville · Reviews

Stand Up Live Huntsville’s Grand Opening Weekend

Good morning, friends!

I hope that your weekend was good and that your coffee is strong. This Monday is especially difficult because I had a three day weekend… I have alternating Fridays off now, and my new work schedule is really taking awhile for my body to adjust. 

I had a really fun-packed weekend that made me fall in love for trillionth time with my little family. 

On Friday, Benny and I ran some errands: we got haircuts, made an ulta run, visited Lululemon, and got lunch at Farm Burger (SO good!). That night we celebrated my friend’s birthday at a small, cozy gathering. 

Omg you can see my eyes, and his side burns are no longer atrocious.

We were total bums Saturday. I actually slept in late, which is insane! Saturday night we went to see Gold. It had poor critic reviews, but I found it extremely enjoyable! Perhaps I’m biased because I think Matthew McConaughey can pull off any character outstandingly….orrrr because I have a soft spot for Venezolanos (hellooooo, Edgar Ramirez). 

Also, Edgar plays a geologist. My little inner Earth scientist was freaking out over so many of my favorite things going on at once. Benny did not think I was cute when I leaned over and was like “look at the way he sifts that sediment, hubba hubba.” Anyways, I think it is a film worth watching!

Fave Venezolano. Edgar is v close second.

Now. The juicy stuff: we attended a show at Stand Up Live! It was the comedy club’s grand opening weekend, and we were ecstatic to take part in the celebration! 

Benny and I are comedy lovers. Second City was a must on our Chicago trip last June, we attend Epic Comedy Hour at Lowe Mill almost every month, and we watch and rewatch our favorite stand up comics’ sketches on Netflix. You can imagine our thrill upon driving past Stand Up Live for the first time! We have been anticipating its opening with much discussion!

We would have attended regardless of who was performing; however, it was Steve Byrne, and he made it a hoot! I think he was a great energy to have christen the stage. We were also happy to see Scott Eason’s familiar face as an opener, as we have grown fond of his antics at Epic. 

We arrived fifteen minutes prior to doors opening, and we were the first in line to enter. It is first come first serve seating, and we like to sit in the first row at shows. Benny loves getting picked on, and he tends to be a fave target because he is such a character! 

We were in the front and center seats and enjoyed an awesome dinner as the crowds made their way to their seats. Stand Up Live had a selective menu with some great food, and a quick turn around time for service. We split a spinach artichoke dip and the chicken nachos, which were gigantic and delicious! 


The alcohol selection was good: beers averaging at $5, wines per glass at $7, and cocktails at $10. I couldn’t resist trying the Passion Fruit Batida. It rocked my world!




The show was phenomenal, and my jaw was locking up from laughing so hard! We really enjoyed ourselves, and I believe we will be frequenting this venue! The space is laid out well, not to mention, its geographic location is convenient, as the Lowe Mill and Campus 805 are in close proximity. 

A couple of things are worth mentioning to those interested in attending a show. There are service fees when you purchase tickets online, so we bought ours at their box office the night prior to our show. Each ticket comes with a two item purchase minimum, which means you have to buy two drinks or some food items during your visit. This was no problem for us because we did dinner!

I loved our date out to Stand Up Live, and I definitely encourage Huntsville folks to give it a visit! They’ve got their calendar up, so look up their upcoming comedians to see who makes you laugh, and get tickets to see them! Seriously, so fun! 


What is a favorite weekend spot in your town?
[W]IT GIRL

Culture · Events · music

‘Tis the Season for Festival Lineups

Today’s the DAY. I’m a little giddy.

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You see, today is the day that Bonnaroo announces its 2017 lineup. And I feel old.

I remember being a sophomore in high school begging Donna Momma to let me go to Bonnaroo. She made me wait until after I graduated! They used to always drop the lineup close to Valentine’s Day, and it honestly would make this girl swoon.

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I visited the Farm in 2011 and 2012. I remember feeling like I had walked into a whole other   world my first ‘roo. I think my favorite performance of 2011 was Arcade Fire. Their set was so dynamic, and I love them as artists because they all play several instruments! Crazy talent all on one stage!

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2012 was such a dream come true–I got to see Radiohead! RADIOHEAD. And not to brag, but I was on the rail….I earned that spot though. Six hours of waiting, a bruised rib, and a split open toenail. I wore those injuries like medals though because RADIOHEAD.

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I have wanted to return to the Farm, and it disappoints me that I haven’t been since 2012. It was a tough year to beat though, so maybe things worked out how they are meant to be. I wanted to walk down ‘roo nostalgia lane today because they announce the lineup, and presuming it is a good one (rumor has it, it will be), Benny and I want to attend this year! I am anxious to return, and I really want Benny to have his first festival experience.

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What artists are you looking forward to seeing?

 

[W]IT GIRL