we took our first family trip to nashville last week and had the BEST time. it was a short trip but we filled it with as much as we could. we stayed in an adorable air bnb, just outside of town in east nashville. it was the cutest, coziest place we've ever stayed in. the balcony off the kitchen was our favorite part and where we spent both of our mornings there. the home faced east/west so the natural light was out of this world. the whole space just felt warm + inviting. it was a delight to stay in such a beautiful place and elias loved it. we honestly haven't stay in a hotel in so long. we prefer bed + breakfasts and air b+b's over hotels any day. and now that we have elias, it's hands down the best way to travel.
our first night in town was spent getting settled, grabbing some dinner (we went to Hattie B's- YUM!) and making sure dave got to the gregory alan show on time, which was what brought us to nashville in the first place. he got there a little before the doors opened, but still managed to snatch up a front row spot. gregory alan is played daily in our home and is who elias falls asleep to every night. he's an amazing artist + musician, and i'm happy dave was able to see him live. the last time he was in louisville, dave didn't go and has regretted it ever since. knowing he got to see him and had such a great experience, really made me happy. while dave was at the show, elias and i stayed back at the house. we took a bubble bath and then curled up on the couch and watched minions until elias drifted off to sleep.
before booking our trip to nashville, i knew there were two things i wanted to do. i knew i wanted to one, eat at loveless cafe and two, get a manicure at poppy + monroe. i came across poppy + monroe through elsie larson's instagram and immediately fell in love with their mission, concept and style. they're an all natural + indie beauty salon, specializing in waterless mani +pedis. if you've been reading along for a while then you know that my passion for all natural skincare + body products runs deep, so this salon was right up my alley. i knew i had to check it out while in town, so on the ride down, i booked an appointment.
the morning after the show and our first full day in nashville, was when we had breakfast at loveless and when my appointment at poppy + monroe was. all morning i felt anxious, i couldn't stop talking about my nail appointment or elsie larson. (haha) i know that sounds silly, but i found the salon through elsie and knew she lived in nashville, so something in my gut was telling me that she was going to be at the salon. i'm incredibly intuitive and seriously think i'm psychic sometimes. forrealz.
anyway, we had breakfast (which was delicious) and then dave drove me to the salon. when i booked the appointment, i let them know how i had heard of their salon (through elsie) so when i checked in, the owner said, "so are you friends with elsie?" to which i laughed and said, "oh i wish! i just found you all through her." she then went on to tell me that elsie would be in later that day (told you i was psychic!). but i still thought that "later" meant hours after i had left. i went on to meet my salon tech and got started with my nails. i wanted to get one of their unique designs on my nails (something i never do) but they unfortuantely didn't have enough time to do anything like that, so i chose a soft pink for my nails. the entire experience was wonderful. i asked my nail tech questions about waterless mani + pedis, talked to her about my passion of non-toxic, chemical-free products and how brilliant i thought their salon was. i can only hope that louisville will open something similar in the near future.
i was almost finished with my appointment when another nail tech came up to me and said, "i overheard you talking about elsie and just wanted you to know that she'll be here any mintue. feel free to say hi to her." as soon as she said that, the door opened and elsie walked in. i almost died. haha. i hid behind my hail tech (who was cracking up at me) and whispered to her, "i have to say hi! but i'm scared." anyway, to make a long story short, i worked up enough courage to say hi, i told her that i had been following her and her sister's blog for years and was at poppy + monroe because of her. she was so nice. she smiled and talked with me about how much she loved that salon and when she found out i was from louisville, she got excited and told me to send her a list of my favorite spots in town. i felt like a total dork the entire time we chatted, but i was proud of myself for even sparking up conversation. that's totally out of my comfort zone to do such a thing, but i honestly felt like i was MEANT to meet her that day, so i had to say something, ya know? i mean really.. what were the odds of her and i booking appointments on the same day + time?
the rest of our trip was perfect. we took our time wandering around the different parts of the city. we shopped, ate and even found a park for elias to run around in. i think my favorite part of the trip was our short time at the park on our last night. the sun had gone behind the clouds and the trees provided a nice shade and breeze for us, making it the perfect night for a park visit.
as always, elias was such a trooper the entire trip (besides the "hangry" meltdown before dinner on our last night) and we couldn't be more proud of him. i think part of why elias does so seemingly well on trips is because we allow downtime for him and remember that he's just a toddler. we specifically went back to our air bnb when we noticed he needed a break, just so he could rest and run around. we also took our time, didn't cram our day full of activities, and made sure to do something he would enjoy (which was the park). i think it's important to remember that trips with children mean not getting to do every thing that YOU necessarily want to do. we made my nail appointment and dave's concert work by trading elias back and forth between the two of us. this is important. giving each other time to do something we enjoy but also learning to give our children the same. does that make sense?
anyway, here are a few photos (not in any order) from our trip. i wanted to create a little video as well, but i'm not quite up to that level yet. i'll get there. hah.
dave and i will be celebrating 4 years of marriage in early october and plan on taking another family trip around that time. we want to go back to Indianapolis where we went for our honeymoon and take elias to the children's museum. it'll be another short trip, just a weekend stay, but i'm already so excited. these truly are the best days of our lives!
until next time,
r + d + e