Rear View | February

Hi there! It's time for another edition of Rear View, where I recap the previous month's happenings around the blog and elsewhere. Let's jump right in! 

[No long winded introduction, Steve? I KNOW. Miracles do happen sometimes 😉 )

View from the North Carolina - Tennessee border, on our way to Gatlinburg

ON THE BLOG

  • Friday Faves - One of those lazy-listy posts with all the things I've been loving lately.
  • Wish List | Art & Decor Books - Lots of big books with pretty pictures that I've been thinking about adding to the family.
  • What's New | Blog Archive - I finally added an archive page with all the blog posts in one easy to navigate spot. Not a super interesting post, but it might come in handy for 'ya someday ;)

HERE AND THERE
AKA: The stuff that happened that I probably didn't blog about.   

TRIP TO NORTH CAROLINA FOR MY DAD'S RETIREMENT SURPRISE
After talking about it for the last several years, my dad finally retired this month. To celebrate, my brother (who lives in Ohio) and B and I all showed up and surprised him at their home near Charlotte, NC. It had been over a year since we were all together, so we had a wonderful weekend catching up and doing what we do best— laugh and drink beer. We all enjoy sampling craft beer and spent most of Saturday hitting up a few of the local breweries for flights and pints before heading back home on Sunday. 
[For those interested, here are a few links of the places we visited: Granite Falls Brewing Co., American Honor Ale House, and Olde Hickory Tap Room]

TRIP TO GATLINBURG AND PIGEON FORGE, TN
Two weekends after our trip to NC, we loaded up the truck once again this time for a weekend mini-vacay with B's family in Tennessee. We had planned on taking the teenage nephews snow tubing at Ober Gatlinburg, but when we arrived, the tickets were sold out. B had brought his gear to do a bit of snowboarding and managed to convince the boys to try it out and they did great! I'm not a huge fan of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, as it's a bit too crowded and touristy for me, but we always have fun when we're there and I really love the drive up through the Great Smoky Mountain National Park— SO beautiful!  

A rainy, overcast drive through the mountains back to Georgia— This was taken just down the road from the first photo. Isn't it amazing how different things look with just a bit of change in the weather?

ON THE TRAILS AGAIN...
We've had a pretty mild winter around here, so I can't complain about the weather too much, but we've been kinda slacking on our hiking adventures the last few months. The last weekend of February was too beautiful to waste indoors, so B and I decided to visit the State Botanical Garden of Georgia trails and get our hike on. It felt so good to get out in the fresh air and sunshine and get the legs going. I had forgotten how wonderful the gardens are, even when everything is still 50 Shades of Brown. Things were just starting to show signs of life again so I'm looking forward to going back in a week or two when there's a bit more color.  

STUFF I TOTALLY OBSESSED OVER THIS MONTH

  • MUSIC
    Not gonna lie, I am still listening to Made in Heights on repeat. I'm 200% addicted. I did, however, add in some tracks from a playlist created by Oscar-winner Brie Larson for Apple Music (I think I mentioned this on a recent Friday Faves post?). I'm convinced that she probably throws an awesome party and even though I'm a homebody introvert who usually avoids large gatherings like the plague, I would totally show up should she ever be so kind to invite me. Mostly because I just want to see what other gems she has stashed in her music collection.
  • THE YEAR OF THE WORK
    I've followed Kayley since her days on her original blog, Sidewalk Ready, and have always admired her ability to share her heart and inspire others. I was so excited to hear of a new project she started this year called, The Year of the Work, and so far, it has been nothing short of amazing. I was a little late to jump in, but she has created a great little community of women all supporting one another and, as she puts it so wonderfully, "...striving to live lives full of inspiration, purpose, and meaning." You can read more about TYOTW on her current blog, That's Your Gold and Instagram.

So, that has been February! I am very thankful for the mild weather Mother Nature decided to gift us with this year here in Georgia. February is usually the most difficult for me, mentally and physically [cold, wet weather = angry, achy joints, and joint pain = major brain fog], but I'm thrilled to say I made it through the entire winter without a major flare up! And now, we're on to March, one of my favorite months. Spring is coming, my birthday is coming, and there are some new things on the horizon that I am pretty excited [and a bit nervous!] about. 

Have a great weekend, friends!
xo, Steve