Coast to Coast Road Trip – The Grand Canyon

This was the pinnacle of our road trip, ya’ll – The Grand Canyon. One of the 7 natural natural wonders of the world , the name lives up to the hype. If you caught the previous post of days 1&2, you’re up to speed on our drive from Washington to Salt Lake which now brings us to our stop in Flagstaff, AZ! Less than a few hours from the Grand Canyon, Geoff and I got up early to catch the late morning light over this incredible piece of creation.

As we were nearing the park we saw a few helicopters flying over us. I casually commented on how insane it would be to take a tour of the canyon from above! Geoff smirked, quickly glanced in my direction and excitedly said “don’t play around because I will turn this car around right now!” Now, for those of y’all who know me know that I’m a bit of a budget ‘enthusiast’, if you will. (y’all like what I did there) 🙃 So the mere thought of spending more money than we already were on gas and hotel stays alone gives me heart palpitations. However, *said intently* I also have a spontaneous ‘treat yo self’ bone in my body that can sometimes take over. Halla atcha girl! 💃🏼 And wouldn’t you know it, ‘treat yo self’ won! *Geoff cheers loudly in the background.

Next thing I knew, we were taking off to what is now one of the most memorable moments of my life, just short of meeting Geoff and giving birth (seriously). I mean, at one point I even got emotional over the fact that we were physically flying over such a breath-taking piece of God’s creation – there were no words. I’ve never done something so spontaneous in my life, I couldn’t believe we were there, together…and I was beyond grateful for that memory we were given.

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After the tour, we took a drive into the park to see things from yet another perspective. And to be honest, it was just as special in it’s own right. I could’ve stayed there all day, just sitting and looking out to what seemed to be a never-ending panoramic view of some of the most beautiful landscape I’d ever laid eyes on. It was like an out of body experience where I felt even closer to Geoff for just witnessing it together.❤️

If y’all have a running bucket list, I strongly encourage you to check at least one of those items off in 2017. I’m a strong believer in the “you’ll only regret the things you didn’t do” mindset.

Thanks for reading, y’all! Winding down our trip on days 3-6 on the next post here on LtL where we visit the sweetest grandparents around.

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

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Coast to Coast Road Trip

It seems as though our adventures are slowing down for the time being, so hindsight would tell me that driving across the country with G may have been the best way to go out with a BANG! 💥  That’s not to say our adventures won’t continue here in middle Tennessee, but they may just have a little less altitude. 😉

Back in March Geoff and I drove our way through the good ol’ US of A. With every ending comes a beginning and sadly that meant our time in Washington was over but a new chapter just within reach; subchapter #1, driving from Washington to Florida, with our final destination ending in middle Tennessee! I still can’t believe we did it, and don’t think I’ll even be able to get it all in one post! I mean, how am I supposed to condense a life changing time in our lives into one post? Maybe the answer is I don’t and let the rest fall into place. 🙏🏼

Weeks leading up to our final departure Geoff was busy mapping out our drive, which was a nice change from when I planned the road trip out there from Florida back in 2012…more on that here(insert cliche “where has the time gone?!”). Once I got to Washington, we had a few days with dear friends then packed up for our 13 hour drive to Salt Lake City, Utah! I always knew how beautiful of a state WA was but really found a new appreciation for Oregon. We’d only ever gone as far south as Portland so being able to see more of it’s rolling hills and seemingly endless mountain peaks began the appreciation of our road trip on the right foot.

After 173 games of ‘Would you Rather’ and ’20 Questions’ we finally made it to our hotel in Salt Lake. The mountains there are so.huge. we could see the outline of them even in the dark! It was as if they fell from the sky and landed smack dab next to you. I’d seen so many amazing pictures of the breathtaking views Utah can offer, so we decided to take the next morning and do a little exploring downtown. I’d love to go back one day and visit their National Parks. I mean whoa, could you imagine the photo opps there! *heart beats quickly* I’d probably be nerding out behind a lens the whole time while Geoff ‘patiently’ waited with a clenched jaw line. 😁😘 *Love you, G.

Salt Lake City’s downtown was so clean and manicured! I just remember walking around thinking it felt like a movie set.  We walked their streets and visited the main campus for LDS. It was something you’d have to see in person to believe, but it was nothing short of spectacular. The money, time and care they put into their grounds, welcoming visitors, and creating a peaceful ambiance was kind of surreal.

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Oregon panoramic peaks
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Sunset over Idaho
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Salt Lake City LDS campus. One word – HUGE!

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So that completes days 1-3! Y’all know I made a video too of the whole trip but I recently realized I have over 45 minutes of footage so…yeah, it’ll be a minute before I edit and post that on my YouTube channel. 😅 Until our next outing, hope you enjoyed our first few days across the country!

Thanks for reading, ya’ll! Stay tuned for our trip to the Grand Canyon and a surprise view from the air…coming next on LtL!❤️✌🏼

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

 

Grace

 

Not too long ago I went on a women’s retreat through my home church at Southside United Methodist in Jacksonville, FL. The retreat was nearby, but just far enough in distance to give you the mental capacity of a vacation in the quaint historical town of Fernandina Beach. The theme for the weekend was Grace, and I was fully equipped to ball my eyes out like a baby as I soaked in the word of Jesus surrounded by other strong women all looking for the same thing: strength in numbers. Maybe I’m ‘broad brushing’ here on what the other women were searching for during this time of spiritual growth, but I would imagine it was in the ball park of gaining strength. Maybe it was physically, from ailments they or loved ones have experienced; mentally from the day-to-day exhaustion of just plain ‘adulting’, or maybe just a spiritual uplifter to refuel their tanks for the year ahead. Regardless of the specific reasons, I think we can all agree we all need strength from somewhere to counterbalance our weaknesses that are hardwired in us from, well, life.

But how do we release these ‘dead weights’ of guilt, exhaustion, self-analyzing criticisms (the list can go on sometimes, can’t it)? The simple answer: Jesus. The how: through His Grace…at least that’s my working equation. 😉

For me, this retreat was a reminder of just that, my constant need of His grace. Lately I have had to check back in almost daily to remind me of God’s grace. The GRACE, not my efforts, is what saves me. I am not judged by how many ‘good acts’ I’ve done for the day; if the dishes are done, laundry is folded, dinner is prepared, planning done for my small business is further along, nurturing my relationships, or teaching Brooks oh I don’t know how to be a functioning person in society?? I could honestly keep going on the mental check list I keep a subconscious running tab on. The truth is, if I always focused on this list (and the even longer one than can creep in), I’d never feel like I met my own expectations, and…wait for it, His TRUTH is truer than my own FEELINGS any day of the week. 🙌🏼

I have a grand idea in my mind, a goal I’m constantly working towards. And while I love this innate drive to be better, do better…I’m constantly reminded that this is not my sole purpose here on Earth. We can do AMAZING things, God is just looking for willing hearts…and I want to give myself the grace He offers me so in those moments He calls on me, my heart is open and ready.

I’ll be taking a small break from blogging these next few weeks as I head out to WA to meet Geoff and we make our road trip back across the country! I’m giving myself a break from writing and posting while I soak in these last few days in Florida, enjoy the HECK outta our travels across this great country, and make our move as a family up to our new home in Tennessee. It’s crazy how life can come full circle sometimes. This trip we’re about to embark on takes me right back to the days we first started dating and drove from Atlanta to Phoenix watch Auburn in the 2010 National Championship. And how can I not mention the literal full circle of driving back across the country; where the West-bound trip was with my willing-and-able mom exactly 4 1/2 years ago!

I can’t wait to share with you our adventures over 2,000+ miles, and then as we get settled into our new home back in the South, in middle Tennessee!

In the meantime, here are a few pics to hold you over from probbbbably my favorite adventure with B in Florida…the photos really captured the joy, adventure and beauty in the day we shared. If you want to see more, click HERE! And if you want to follow along on our travels across the US of A, follow me on my Instagram stories! Just click the icon up in the right corner under Social. 😊☝🏼

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Thanks so much for reading! I hope today’s post offered you the grace you’ve been needing and so deserve.

She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

Proverbs 31:25

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

Exploring Jax

One of the main things I wanted to do during my short-term stay here in Jacksonville was explore the more obvious scenic spots that we ‘locals’ become blind to on a day-to-day basis. I’m a firm believer in doing the touristy stuff in every city I live in…I mean there’s a reason why out-of-towners go visit these monuments, hotspots, or viewpoints – because it offers something special to the location. So, I want to capture those special spots throughout my hometown and see it with a fresh perspective, as a ‘visitor’.

Recently my mom, B and I went to the Treaty Oak and Friendship Fountain in downtown Jax. The weather was perfect and these were just the short morning outings we needed to feel accomplished for the day before naptime commenced. 😉

They really are such beautiful spots to visit. They’re the perfect places to escape from your office, take your lunch, or just enjoy the views of the river while watching the Main Street bridge rise to allow boats to pass, and of course, people watch. Not to mention, it’s a great area to let your toddler run free to stretch their little growing legs. B especially loved the fountain! He loved splashing in the puddles and watching the water jump out into the sky. Next time I need to take a little picnic and just camp out for a late morning outing.

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Thanks so much for reading! Our time here is nearing an end in Jax. I’ll be flying out to WA soon to meet Geoff as we hit the road for our cross-country trek back to the South! I can’t wait to document that trip! 🙊 I’m so looking forward to some adventures with my main squeeze! Stay tuned for that! 🚙🗺

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

Washington Oaks Park

This beach y’all…this BEACH! I’m going to be honest here and say that I wish I could just post this outing over and over…and over again. I mean, I took hundreds (yes, hundreds) of pictures and uh, wish I could post them all on this post!

I think it’s safe to say this is hands down one of my favorite days with Brooks. The pictures that captured the joy from the day and the genuinely fun time we had marks this one in the top memories for me. This beach is such a gorgeous hidden gym I have N E V E R heard of until recently. It’s really amazing what you can find in your area with a simple Google search. This particular outing was suggested by a friend from church, but I remember reading about it when searching ‘places to visit/photograph.’ #themoreyouknow 💫

This day was so special to me. It reminded me of my very first solo hike with B and how those moments and memories are just for us. I love sharing these sweet memories with my little nugget. Aside from his *cough* rare toddlering moments 😉, he brings so much joy to my life. I love exploring the world through his innocence and purity, it’s a real gift I pray to be more mindful of everyday.  And the adventures won’t stop! Did y’all catch my recent post of our FUN announcement?? It’s official, we’re movin’ to Nashville!! I am so so exciteddd! I don’t know when…and I don’t know where, but the adventures will be comin’ to LtL. I’m just trying to keep my eyes and heart open to new possibilities our next chapter will bring. 🙏🏼

As for now…I’ll continue soaking in special days like these. For my friends in Florida, y’all have GOT to go here (kids or not). It’s such a beautiful and peaceful place to spend some time.

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Thanks so much for reading y’all! Happy Friday-eve!

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

Black Rock Beach

It’s been really special to have this extra time in my home town, staying with my mom and dad as they’ve opened their home so graciously to B and me for over 3 months (that’s a lot of toddler time folks). 😁 But one of the more meaningful reasons I love this time is for the special things I get to share with each of them on our own time. I’ve done a few fun outings with my mom I’ll be sharing soon on LtL, but today’s post is dedicated to my dad. ❤️ I’ve written a few special ones for my mom in the past and it’s about time I make this one for my ol’ man, because y’all, I may be biased, but he’s a pretty special man.

Since I was little, we’ve always joked that I was the ‘token son he never had’ of my sisters, but God knew he was just the man for the job to raise and love three daughters. His kindness is infinite, his faith in God constant, and his confidence and humility are endless. While his sensitivity is one of his best qualities, he’s also a guy’s guy. I love our memories of throwing the ball, mowing the lawn together (*token son syndrome once my sisters left the house), or tailgating with a *strong cocktail in hand. He’s set an example for me for the type of character I want to find in a husband, and I believe I did just that.

Now, before my mascara (continues to) run or my laptop short circuits from unforeseen mist falling from my eyes…today’s post is for you Dad! H A P P Y  B I R T H D A Y! 🎉

Thanks for all you do, and being up for an adventure! 😄

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Look at that #unremarkable bro fashion.👌🏼😉

Happy Bday, Dad. Thanks for being you, head to toe.

Here’s a special video I made, just for you ❤️

Lemons to LOVE,

Lindsay

Tallahassee Time

“I’ve lived here my whole life and I never did that!” I used to hear that often from people back in the PNW about a place I visited or an adventure we’d just gone on. Well, there’s #nojudgement over here y’all because I grew up in Florida and never went to my own state’s capital. 😯 Maybe that’s less shocking to some, but Tallahassee also houses one of the state’s top ACC school’s, FSU, where some might assume I would’ve visited for that reason alone. But when I was in college application mode there was only one place I wanted to go and one place I applied, Auburn University.#wde But that’s neither here nor there for this blog post *insert SEC football season 2017 is so close I can smell it*. 🙌🏼🏈🐅

My sister and her family moved to Tallahassee no too long ago, so I knew I had to make one of my Florida outings to visit and explore there with her. After a girls’ night away in Fernandina, we headed there together with B in tote, ready to make the most out of the few days we had. I love the energy of someone new to an area, and my sis was just the right candidate. 😊She was all geared up in between her mom duties to hit the parks and ‘cool things to see’ in her newish city of residency.

We explored the gardens at Maclay and visited an old oak in Thomasville, GA. This oak is so old, *how old is it?* well, it’s like 330+ years old, old. I took so many sweet cousin pics mixed with huge mossy oaks struck with late afternoon light…it was hard to only choose a few!

Tallahassee was really beautiful, and here is the highlight reel…

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Haha this picture cracks me up! Poor Hayes…he was such a good sport. All B wanted to do was hang on and wrestle with his cousin. I remember the feeling of thinking all my older siblings and family members were so cool and all I wanted to do was hang with them. ❤Aug 2016 shootAug 2016 shootAug 2016 shootAug 2016 shootAug 2016 shoot

That’s all for now! My adventures are slowing down a bit these last few months. I’ve really just been enjoying the in-between moments with my family and friends here in Florida. I have a few more adventures to share…oh, and how could I forget?! 😉 ONE BIG ADVENTURE ahead!

It’s official! Our family is moving to…Music City itself, Tennessee! We’ll be in one of the charming suburbs just south of Nashville and we really could not be more excited! I can’t wait to share more with y’all! If y’all have anyyyy suggestions of places to visit or things y’all want to see here on LtL, please share below! I love a good adventure bucket list to cross off. 😉

Since my posts aren’t as frequent right now, come find me on Instagram and follow along on our day-to-day adventures in Florida! Click the link to follow and come say Hi!

Wishing everyone a fun weekend of adventures!

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

Local Park Days

Things are starting off simple and steady here as B and I settle into our newish and temporary living arrangements. For those of you who don’t know yet, our family is temporarily split coast to coast for the next few months. While Geoff finishes up his duties with the Army in the state of Washington, Brooks and I are back in my hometown in Florida living with my parents; who have so graciously opened up their home to two new roommates (3 if you count both of B’s toddler personalities). 😉

Being back home in the city I grew up in comes with an array of emotions, but mostly wonderful, sweet, joyful and spirit-filled with a few learning curves thrown in their for good measure…it’s all about those ABLs amiright?? Always Be Learning?…or something like that. 🙃 You can see more about our first few weeks during the holidays here, but as B and I settle into a new routine I’m crossing off a few things on my ‘New Adventures in Old Florida’ list.  It’s been really fun looking at my hometown with a fresh set of eyes and new perspective. I love finding ways to enrich a place where I have so many fond memories with family and my dear friends #squad, and creating a whole new platform of memories in this season of my life; insert wife and mother here.

I have quite a few places to see on my list already and I can’t wait to share them here with y’all! I’ve also got some prettttyy exciting news on where our next stop will be for our family and I can’t wait to share it…but it’ll have to wait a few more weeks, sorry. 😉

In the meantime, you’ll have to settle for a sweet little stop at a local park near my parents’ house. It’s right on the river complete with a dock, people fishing, and boats sailing by. So naturally I had to take B here, he’s such a little water baby! It may not compare to more grand scenes like this or this, but it doesn’t fail me in the memories shared with those I love most. ❤

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*Not pictured: mommy and MiMi who were in their sweaty-best post cardio attire. OR maybe I should speak for myself in the sweaty department, I get that attribute from my dad.😅#TMI

We’ve got some fun plans this weekend as we venture out to the coast lines to an area I’ve never even been to! This weekend is a dad/daughter (+B) outing while my mom is having some qt girl time with her gal pals #squad. 👯

Y’all enjoy your weekend! Any funs plans? Share below, I’d love to hear them, or any suggestions you might have for us? Just comment below! 🙋🏼👇🏼

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

Florida Fun

As we settle into our newish surroundings  I’m continuing to process all that has gone on, is going on, and will go on. Hint: it’s a lot! 🙂 In the last few weeks, we’ve packed up part of our life and split it between Washington and Florida. We decided, as a family, that the best thing for now while Geoff processes out of the Army, would be that Brooks and I would stay in my hometown in Florida with my (very hospitable) parents, AKA The Garner B&B. 😉 The logical plan was to save money and make the travel times fewer rather than going back and forth within only a few months. The emotional side was…I was exciteddd to spend some quality time with my family and friends *cough* finally! The other emotional side that I hadn’t known to anticipate was the intermittent stress and heartache it would cause being a split family for 3 months. Nevertheless, it’s the decision we made and still agree was the right one.

Don’t get me wrong, my heart and head still know this is the right decision…I just didn’t know what I didn’t know, ya know? 😉 I think with all the excitement leading up to my ‘leisure days with Mimi and Pops’ I didn’t factor in the toddler tantrums, change of routine for said toddler, and him missing his bestie, AKA Daddy. With all the hype leading up to coming home, I realized I still had to process the part where I was leaving our home of 4 years. The place we began to raise our first born, left friends, and made memories…*processes through the last sentence one more time. Oh, and did I mention we’ll be moving again in another few months??? A new life, new adventures, new routine, and a new address await us come April…and, side note, we couldn’t be more excited!!!! More on that later. 😉

So as I continue to process, and process some more, my feelings on the ever evolving changes (known as life) and the excitements that lie ahead, I wanted to sit and write. It’s been awhile, or so it feels! I was so used to our weekend adventures in the PNW that now I’m redirecting my blogging efforts into what new adventures lie ahead. I’m not quite sure what that’ll be just yet, but I definitely have plans for some *edit: 18 and counting* new destinations and photo opps that I’m so excited to explore and share with y’all!

Until then, here is a little snippet of what we’ve been up to during our first few weeks in Florida…

A few highlights:

Christmas time, (free childcare) GNO, (free childcare) date night, girl time, family time, and free towel service at The Garner B&B

 

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B’s first trip to beaches on the East coast! #loveatfirstsight
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Florida oranges #duh

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Christmas dinner with the fam…all 33 of us! 😀

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Sunsets on the river…how I’ve missed these!

Enjoy the rest of you week….oh, and happy New Year friends! I hope you’ve had a refreshing start to this new year that bring you new perspective and hope for what’s to come! My heart is so full and I can’t wait to see what God has planned for the future.

Don’t forget to check out below for our little video montage I put together ❤

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

Last visit to my Mt Rainier love

I’m going a little backwards today. I know I’ve technically already written my ‘last’ PNW post, but on our last Sunday in Washington Geoff, Brooks and I went to where it all began – Mt Rainier. Mt Rainier was the first outing Geoff and I had, right after we married and before he deployed. We were living in a hotel before Geoff deployed and barely had two pennies to rub together, but we made the best of the time we had and found our happiness in each other and the adventure of being a newlywed. I remember our first drive to Mt. Rainier. I was instantly captivated with the magic the mountain possessed and the fresh snowfall that dusted the mighty evergreens.

Fast forward 5 years later and now we share that same magic with our son Brooks. So it’s only fitting we spend our last #famday Sunday in one of our most cherished places, playing in the winter wonderland that is Mt. Rainier.

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So long winter wonderland…you’ve been so good to us over the years; never disappointing, always giving us your all. ❤

Until next time! Stay tuned to the adventures that await back in the South…

First stop, sunny Florida!

Lemons to Love,

Lindsay

Heybrook Lookout

So the countdown continues on LtL’s #8in8 bucket list as we near the end of our time here in the PNW. In my last post I started our official countdown, which you can read more about here! There is honestly so much I would love to do before I leave in few weeks,  but sadly there isn’t enough time or the season just isn’t right. Nonetheless, y’all know I’m gonna try my best to  go out with a BANG, in true LC style. 😉💥

This week’s #8in8 pick was to Heybrook Lookout, located up in the Central Cascades. There are tons of amazing fire lookouts here in the Pacific Northwest, all with some of the most amazing views, but most (that I’ve seen anyway) require quite the effort in reaching…at least more than I’m willing to put out with a toddler in tow.😉 So we chose this one because of it’s distance and trail ease…but mostly because I saw some pictures that once you reach the top of the tower there are birds that will fly up to you and eat right out of your hand!! 😱🕊 *insert photo opps galore here!*

Sadly, the birds were no where to be found, but our day spent exploring was just as memorable.  We let B out of the Ergo carrier to blaze his own trails, and blaze did he ever! It was sooo cute to see him climb, run, and waddle his way through the trail and up to our destination. *heart melts* It honestly felt pretty cool to see him love something on his own that Geoff and I so equally enjoy doing together. We brought our lunch picnic, and once we reached the tower we let it clear out a little, and sat under some trees to devour our well-deserved sandwich and chips.

Brooks has never met a stranger I don’t think…and his new thing is saying ‘share’ when he wants something someone’s else has. 😏 There was a mother/son duo at the top of the tower enjoying their lunch. B eyed an orange, then quickly gestured that he’d also like to enjoy by holding out his hand and saying ‘share.’ “No, B, that’s not how sharing works…” (although …it is cute, most of the time) 😁 We were on a bit of a time crunch so I could make it to a girls’ night out for martinis (because, balance), so we basically ran the entire way back down the trail. Or at least I tried. The trail was at a pretty steady decline the whole way, so by the end my quads were (quite literally) shaking…needless to say, three days later the soreness finally left the lower half of my body. 😅 #outofshape

2 of 8 – Heybrook Lookout

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“Hoola hooping” 😀
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That’s all for the LtL #8in8 today!! We’ve got some fun things lined up in my last few weeks here I can’t wait to share!!

In the meantime…click that video montage below and enjoy yourself some live footage of B being adorable.📽 🤗👦🏼

Lemons to Love, ❤️

Lindsay