Nashvillagers

 

30221306_10111451091722270_188651475224424738_n

This past March was my dad’s 70th birthday, and my sisters and I celebrated by taking him to Nashville (similar to the Charleston trip we made with our mom back in October). My father has gotten pretty deep into genealogy research and discovering distant relatives, so he was stoked on heading to Nashville as his ancestors hailed from Tennessee. #TheOnlyTenISee 😉

30226436_10111451090489740_3423548267176655152_n

We started off at the Ryman Auditorium, the ORIGINAL Grand Ole Opry, with a show from the Gatlin Brothers! It was really neat to sit in the original auditorium pews where many others enjoyed their favorite country and western singers from so long ago. We even did a backstage tour and hungout in Johnny Cash’s old room. My dad was so excited!

30222221_10111451093503700_4163321834030639112_nBEYOND cool.

30127866_10111452764554900_71447669290416080_n

The main thing my dad wanted to do was genealogy research, so we headed to the Tennessee state archives for a deep dive into the history of Blount County, on a search for Cindarella Davis. We made memories that I’ll cherish forever ❤ …and if you’ve never been to a state archive, I highly suggest!

29793408_10111452764599810_4298802639117308642_n

 

30412045_10111453743802480_1856716018262726428_n

One thing we weren’t expecting was the absurdly cold weather in April (it snowed one day!) so we opted for a tour of the Belle Meade Plantation to take advantage of being indoors. We learned that they bred horses, including the famous Bonnie Scotland, descendant of the majority of Derby winning horses! (What a crazy horse family tree that would be… 😉 ) Also the Derby used to be in Tennessee and only moved to Kentucky because of a law that outlawed horse betting in TN in the early 1900s. Oh and they made terrible wine and decent spirits, but the wine pourer HATED us…. HA ha ha.

30226283_10111453745329420_1086338342209381367_n

 

30264434_10111456613182220_2676356596180759759_n

I LOVED our AirBnb house in East Nashville! It’s the sort of Bungalow meets Victorian style home of my dreams and I can’t wait to buy something similar someday. Our neighborhood was ADORABLE and we were even in walking distance (3 blocks) to the gayest, diviest bar around Nashville and had a phenomenal karaoke night out at Lipstick Lounge.

30222160_10111456613581420_4782410963631319442_nSisters on a porch swing.

30261749_10111456860815960_8188239268095272485_n

30265233_10111456871614320_8722148852702711736_n

It was so nice to have some quality time with dad as we stuffed ourselves with artisan donuts, southern fried chicken, BEER, and all the fixins! Eating out at The Flipside (must order the bloody mary) and The Mockingbird (cough cough GET THE COCKTAIL IN A BAG – you won’t regret it) were the most memorable and delish!

30264885_10111456270618720_1905284592492374545_n

 

30443476_10111458028959990_264687107353568205_n

Drinking in honkytonks were a BLAST and made me really question whether or not Austin was really the live music capital of the world….I really felt like I saw so many talented singers and groups all over town, on every floor of every available bar. Bachelorette and bachelor parties EVERYWHERE though, heads up.

30412461_10111461121277960_7694919266809033072_n

It was cold but these boots kept me fashionable AND warm 🙂

30443566_10111461121272970_2439971550993175762_n

I had a great time, TN! I hope to come back someday in the WARM WEATHER and swim in some water holes, hike, and also head towards Memphis to Dollywood…. SOME DAY.

TN.JPG

Forever An 80’s Lady

IMG_9687

I am a true child of the 80s. With 3 older sisters who were becoming teenagers in the late 80s, I have a lot of fond pop-culture influences and memories in my life at an early age. I remember having living room sleepovers with my sisters, staying up all night watching John Hughes movies regularly, with The Breakfast Club on repeat. My 2 Dads, Who’s The Boss, or The Facts of Life, anyone?

IMG_9667

I see you, John Cusack! And I’ve got your $2, right here…

IMG_9688

Can we also talk about how amazing action movies were in the 80s? BADASS action films like Big Trouble in Little China, Red Dawn, and Roadhouse are definitely on rotation in this household.

IMG_9690

Because of my nostalgia for the 80s, I will always be a fan of 80s inspired art, dress, music, and film. I LOVE that shows like Stranger Things are back in style and the fact that I stumbled upon this Rubik’s cube mural in the streets of SF.  I have also been listening to a lot of CCFX lately as well, which is very much influenced by The Cure. Even my Smiths-obsessed brother in law approves!

Emily’s 80s Favorites:

  • John Hughes classics like The Breakfast Club, 16 Candles, Ferris Bueller, and Pretty in Pink
  • New Wave bands Joy Division, New Order, Depeche Mode, The Cure
  • Kooky movies such as Overboard, Mannequin, and Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
  • Sequins, bright colored patterns, pointy toe pumps, and gaudy earrings
  • PATRICK SWAYZE ANYTHING! THE BRAT PACK!
  • Camping movies and TV shows that made camping (or summer camp) look SO cool and fun, like Meatballs, The Great Outdoors, and Summer Rental
  • Other classics such as Adventures in Babysitting, Summer School, The Goonies, Heathers, Back to the Future, Footloose, The Thing, Beetlejuice, AND MANY MOARRRR!

Man, do I love the 80s ❤

A Charleston Good Time

22196280_10110483612982420_3344320873536152119_n

What up people?! A couple weeks ago I met all three of my sisters and my mom in Charleston to celebrate my mother’s 70th birthday. Charleston has always been on my list of places in the US to explore, so I was pretty pleased we decided on this southern destination spot. The ladies all traveled together from Texas while I met them across country on a red eye flight. It had been over a decade since the FOUR of us Coalson girls took a trip together, and we had never done so with our Mom. WHAT WAS GONNA HAPPEN?!

The first thing we did once I got there on Thursday was embark on a beautiful historic carriage ride through downtown Charleston, the Holy City. I had never seen so many places of worship! The old buildings were delightful but it was hot AF! I’m a delicate SF coastal flower now and am not accustomed to extreme heat or humidity anymore. Our horse was very lovely though and it was a cute time together.

22089135_10203747899254247_4482847620575954550_n.jpg

IMG_6738.jpg

Check me out, chillin on our lunch porch at Cru Cafe. God I love Southern porches…

IMG_6811.jpg

We then decided to take a happy hour booze cruise for sunset views of the harbor. I loved this bridge, I even bought a small painting of it later on. BTW – some of the most amazing sunsets I’ve seen were on this cruise…

IMG_6822

This is my sis Bryana, also known as the author behind the blog OurSommLife. She is married to a Sommelier and writes about their travel adventures, wine, being a mom, and most recently keeping track of my parents house through the damage from Hurricane Harvey (I’ll write more on that later).  Isn’t she cute?!

22089181_10203747976736184_2507779346169054345_n

This is a blurry pic of all of us on the boat, and it makes me laugh so hard. Bryana is on the left, then Krista, my mom, me, and my oldest sister Karen. Don’t we look fun?!

22140807_10203747966215921_1996525519063400327_n

I’m glad we did the cruise because I never would have seen Fort Sumter or gotten this glorious shot! It is the birthplace of the Civil War, and anyone who knows me knows that I was a Civil War buff at the ripe age of 13. (My Grandmother gave me Civil War trading cards and my dad used to take me to meet ups at Barnes & Noble…granted I was the only child or young person under the age of 40, but it was a fun thing I shared with my dad. We saw a lot of Civil War era movies together. Let’s just say history was always my favorite subject growing up, and I used to fantasize about being a history teacher at one point in my life). #funfacts

22141029_10110483626270790_9001886964477828570_n.jpgThe Charleston harbor has some spectacular sunsets! This is one of my favorite pics.

On Friday morning we proceeded to check out Boone Hall Plantation just on the outskirts of the city. We all grew up watching the 80’s adaption of North and South (staring THEE super hot Patrick Swayze!!!) and this was his home in the show. Of course we just HAD to check it out! (I might have also played the opening credits theme song on our way in…) ALSO – The Notebook was filmed here.

Screen Shot 2017-10-19 at 2.48.39 PM.png

22045857_10110474135171030_3391824138672601455_n.jpg

22008430_10110474370085260_1774354558632164436_n

Afterwards we made our way over to Isle of the Palms beach to take a gander at the Atlantic ocean. We originally wanted to make a day out of Myrtle Beach because the movie SHAG was a staple in our home growing up. (A coming of age 80’s movie, that takes place in the 60’s, with a shag dancing contest at the end?! SIGN ME UP.) However, Hurricane Jose just missed the coastline prior to our visit and there were horrible mosquitoes everywhere, so we decided to axe the beach day. We opted for a short peek-a-boo visit instead.  🙂

IMG_7419.jpg

22089394_10110476429228720_3166178296728696042_n.jpg

Friday night we pursued our own ghost adventures at the haunted jailhouse downtown! We opted to download a few different “ghost hunting apps” to help us determine if our own Airbnb was haunted and also tried it out in the jail. Honest review, I think the apps are fun-n-games and didn’t really pay too much attention to the words they displayed (most of it was for entertainment but a handful of the words did freak me and Bry out…). But the apps “light up” around spiritual activity and the whole time we were in the jail my app was glowing up constantly (as opposed to other places). I also got a weird spooky picture which super creeped me out…

22050346_10203747897334199_7288879240101827524_n

I love the old southern architecture! While I don’t forsee me living in the south again, I do love a good old southern home. They are just so beautiful to me.

22141117_10110483612438510_8738016369667520052_n

The infamous Rainbow Row!!

22090022_10203747990456527_9183028518204770871_n

Here I am outside of the Old Slave Mart. The exhibit was really well written and in my opinion was the best source of HONEST information on around the slave trade in the area. Slavery is not pretty but it happened and we should all acknowledge it FULLY (and not brush it under the rug) so that we can get an accurate grasp of how it has affected our country and citizens even today.

22154288_10203748007976965_5380566506760577296_n

Alas, our last night out we all surprised my mom for a fancy dinner for her 70th at the lovely Charleston Grill! We even packed her one of her favorite nice outfits as we surprised her. It was fun to dress up together and enjoy a night out on the town. Plus, look at the photo we took in front of this amazing staircase!!

22089965_10110480985922070_1165747611548747439_n.jpg

22046716_10110483444704650_5232545538482765152_n.jpg

As our time ended together, we sported the Charleston rainbow row t-shirts mom got us to the airport, ate a quick breakfast, and huddled in for one last group pic before I went my separate way back to foggy San Francisco. Awww we are so cute.

Honest thoughts here:

  • Charleston has been hyped up a lot in recent years as a top travel destination in the US. I, being the big history buff that I am, have always wanted to visit and was very excited to explore more of the Lowcountry.
  • While it was very historic and the food was delicious, there wasn’t really a “vibe” or a social scene that I thought it would have. I assumed there would be a famous street with a lot tourist foot traffic, shopping boutiques, and interesting bars (similar to 6th street in Austin or any street in the French Quarter) but was a little disappointed that this wasn’t the case. It could have also been the time of year that we chose to visit, as it was nearly October, and perhaps summer time it is more bumpin’? It was basically dead when we were there and the night we went out after ghost hunting felt like 28 days later.
  • I barely saw ANY POC, which I found strange…
  • All in all, it was a beautiful place and I’m happy we visited! But I don’t think I would go out of my way to head back unless it was for a reason. Long story short, it wasn’t my favorite city. But it was one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever seen.
  • I’m glad my mother had a great birthday

22089214_10203748005416901_6788205545322768527_n.jpg

Now I will point you to Bryana’s blog post so you can see what she thought of our experience!

XO

Em