I don’t even know where to begin. Has it really been a month since I’ve blogged? I do believe it’s time to catch up.

First of all, I’ve tackled one major aspect of my New Years Resolutions–to take full advantage of my health insurance. Met my new Ob/Gyn in January, followed through with an eye exam in February, and rescheduled my dentist appointment three times in March until it finally happened last week. Aside from meeting my health coach, everything is right on track.

The last few weekends were quite eventful. Clint, Casi and Kooch hosted a “small get-together” that somehow rendered over 30 visitors. Smyrna reunion, commence! The Friday before last, Keegan and I met Doug and Sadie at ML Rose for happy hour beverages. And the following morning, Erika and I met for coffee at Starbucks. And by coffee I mean my much preferred Green Tea Frappuccino.

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Our new go-to for brunch: Party Fowl
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Rum Chatta and Whiskey Breakfast Shots–Yum!
Date night at Coco's Italian Market
Date night at Coco’s Italian Market

From gardening with Tika to the plant sale last Saturday, I’ve enjoyed my time well-spent outside. My grandma, aunt and I raided the fairgrounds bright and early for the Herb Society of Nashville’s semi-annual plant sale. I left with over a dozen different herbs. It’s ironic how I originally swore off gardening this summer due to our upcoming Colorado move….only to change my mind considering we won’t have the opportunity to garden in such a warm climate next summer. I’m eager to learn what thrives in the mountains, but for now I plan to take full advantage of our muggy and humid Tennessee weather.

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Long line for the herb sale
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Plants from my secret favorite home garden center
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The end result

Our Saturday continued with an all-day trip to Centennial Park to celebrate Earth Day. We arrived an hour early and the Grilled Cheeserie was setting up shop. Imagine my surprise to be the very first in line! This isn’t just any ole’ food truck–they usually win Best Food Truck in Nashville every year. Last Saturday marked five consecutive years since I started attending the Nashville Earth Day Festival. It is truly one of my favorites besides Miss Martha’s Ice Cream Crankin and Summer Social.

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OH EM GEE

This afternoon our executive director hosted a pizza party and took us on a bus tour to view all 35 properties that Urban Housing Solutions owns and operates across the great city of Nashville. I’m frequently annoyed with Nashville’s persisting gentrification issues, but I’m honored to work for a nonprofit housing agency which promotes the healthy growth of affordable, sustainable housing for those with unique housing needs. It’s nice to be “in the know”. One of my favorite coworkers named Ray was featured in an Al Jazeera article explaining Nashville’s recent housing boom and the effects on our homeless populations. But hey, at least we have the Earth Day Festival, right?

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Aside from our outrageous herb purchases, the back porch is stocked with several promising veggie garden projects. From tomatoes to corn, peppers, squash, and a multitude of flowers, I’m becoming a container-gardening-pro. We plan to build raised beds in Colorado, just as we had several years ago in Murfreesboro. And don’t get me started on the hanging baskets: We have 3 out front to compliment the porch. BRING IT ON SUMMER.

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Beans, corn and squash
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2 of the 4 tomato plants
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The other tomatoes with a random perennial whose name I forgot
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More corn
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Rainbow Swiss Chard

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Check out my nifty spread

One final mention of gardening: I’m leading my very first community gardening project tomorrow morning! I’ve spent the last several days organizing deets to explain to the volunteers tomorrow. I’ll break us up into three groups with a mission to tackle about 9 or 10 areas of our property in about 4 hours. With hard work and dedication, we can surely accomplish everything, including enhancing our curb appeal and developing our first-ever memorial garden to commemorate former residents.

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Look what I did!
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My car was stuffed to the brim with community gardening supplies!

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On an unrelated note, school’s almost over! I took several classes last summer, but not this time. My academic adviser kindly rescheduled my classes to where I can this summer off to focus on the wedding and the move. She’s such a sweetheart! I never dreamed of taking such an extensive break from school (three whopping months) until Dr. Maniss suggested I do so. All that stands between me and this summer is one and a half finals. Freedom looms so closely around the corner, I can literally taste it.

In bracing for summer, I purchased new hiking shoes. I’ve always wanted a nice pair of Chaco’s and managed to save about $40 on these nifty, earth-green sandals. They conform to my feet perfectly. And in an effort to relax more often, I purchased another book called The Opposite of Loneliness. I’m about 30 pages in, despite battling my finals this week.

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Healthy Summer Salad

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That about sums up life besides the continuous wedding planning. Our honeymoon shirts arrived in the mail recently along with our personalized guestbook from Shutterfly!! We ordered our cupcakes after the tasty consultation with the Cupcake Collection (voted Nashville’s Best Cupcake), and Keegan’s mom agreed to foot the bill. Our guests will have access to FIVE different flavors versus the typical, mundane vanilla wedding cake most couples select. The bridesmaids and I meet weekly to touch base and collaborate, plus Casi tagged along for my dress alterations after she cut my hair last week. I love meeting with my stylist/close friend and the free wine they offer at Bombshells helps me unwind after a long days work. Plus Sadie’s enthusiasm to reign as our wedding coordinator has really helped us tie up loose ends. All in all I’m so grateful for everyone’s support. And I’m especially excited for my bff Caitlin to move in with us this summer! We really don’t need the money, but she needs a place to stay. Same with Greg. Keegan’s friend moved in a few weeks ago and plans to move out in the next few months. I am sooo looking forward to this summer and spending as much time with friends as possible before we move!

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Flower crowns for the girls
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Our secret honeymoon spot is listed on the back 🙂
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Love my bridesmaids!

And now, for some lovely music