Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Return to Bentonville, Arkansas

I've traveled to Bentonville, Arkansas on and off since 2012 for work, as it's the home base for retail giant Walmart.  I went back for a few days this year for a work trip, and I tried my best to take photos of some of the highlights!

From a food perspective, my favorite meal was at The Preacher's Son, set in a restored church just off the downtown square in Bentonville.  Their menu changes seasonally, and in hindsight I can't remember exactly what we ordered, but everything, from the cocktails to the appetizer to the food was delicious.  I vaguely remember choosing a cocktail with pisco in it, because it reminded me of my honeymoon in Peru.

Preacher's Son

Preacher's Son

Another night, we went as a group to Doe's Eat Place, which makes me chuckle.  Saying "Eat Place" instead of restaurant reminds me of the time on The Office when Kevin decided to speak in "small talk" and not using complete sentences.  "Why waste time say lot word when few word do trick?"  That said, the tamales and steak were yummy, the portions were huge (I shared my steak with my work bestie) and Peyton Manning has eaten there, so...  #winning.

On our last free night, my coworkers and I visited Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.  It's as beautiful a building as ever, but the collection/organization have changed a ton since my last visit.  It's definitely worth visiting, but it has dropped off my list of favorite museums in place of some others.  But the sculpture trails are worth a visit on a sunny day for sure!

We actually hit up two museums in the same day, visiting The Walmart Museum in downtown Bentonville.  It's another place that I think has expanded/grown since I first visited.  I remember it feeling a lot smaller.  But my favorite bit of the museum is still Sam Walton's preserved office, down to stacks of magazines and things on the floor.

You could pretty much count the 21C hotel as a third museum, if you think about it.  It's full of artwork, including a painting from a French artist that I really loved!  We grabbed beautiful drinks at The Hive (I think mine was the Origami Crane.) and then walked to Tavola for Italian food.  Both The Hive and Tavola were placed I used to visit on trips in the past.

My 2019 trip to Bentonville was a good mix of new and old haunts for me.
Have you ever been to Northwest Arkansas?

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Miramar Beach with a Toddler

I'm working on a few posts about my travels over the last few months, but while it's still warm in Tennessee, I decided to knock this one out since it's beachy!

I mentioned in a past post that we went to Miramar Beach near Destin, but I didn't do a post about it because life got busy.  Well, earlier this month we went back with my parents and sister!  Kenny is definitely a little water baby.  We stayed at a timeshare at Majestic Sun, which was just a short walk to the beach.

I will say this... I'm not a beach person.  A couple of hours of beach time for like two days is enough for me!  I like trips planned around food, sights, nature, museums, culture... and I'm prone to a sunburn if I'm not careful.  So both last year and this year, I wasn't overly excited at the prospect of a sandy baby and the beach... and both times I was ultimately happy that we went.

I think the trick has been to follow Kenny's lead on the beach.  We generally stuck to his feeding times and naptimes (last year, I was still nursing, so we nursed on the beach) and he was a happy camper.  This year, since he's down to one daily nap, we would do the beach in the morning, head to lunch, nap in the afternoon, then decide how we wanted to spend the rest of the day.  The nice thing about Miramar Beach is that the sand is pretty soft, and the water can be pretty warm and gentle.  We've been able to let Kenny play near the water (supervised, of course) and he can get into the wet sand and stay cool.

A few of the spots we ate that were worth visiting... Grimaldi's for pizza, the Surf Hut and Pompano Joe's for seafood, and Fat Clemenza's for Italian!  All of them were kid-friendly, with great service.

Am I converted to a beach bum?  Not quite... I still love a swimming pool over salt water.  But because it makes Dan and Kenny happy, I'm content to go every so often, so long as we can eat good food and see some sights in addition to sand!

Here are a few throwback photos to last year's framily trip to the same beach.  Look how Kenny has grown!  We were in a rental house just down the street from the condo where we stayed this year.

What's your favorite family-friendly beach destination?

Monday, September 23, 2019

2019 DAR State Conference, Continental Congress, and Juniors Retreat

Am I even a blogger anymore?  I'm months and months behind!  But I like to come back here and look at old posts, so I figure I'll still update from time to time!

2019 has been a busy year as usual for the Daughters of the American Revolution!  In April, we had our annual Tennessee State Conference, and for the third and final year, I had the pleasure of serving as a Personal Page to our State Regent Mrs. Reynolds.  This year, my Mom took care of Kenny at our place, and I had a fun weekend with my friends in service!  We also had the pleasure of having Mrs. Van Buren visit our conference, during her time as First Vice President General.  She is now our DAR President General!

2019 Tennessee Pages at State Conference
with Mrs. Van Buren

I was also featured in a local magazine, Franklin Lifestyle, about how the DAR supports veterans.  It was an honor to be able to call attention to the positive works that DAR members make in their communities.

In June, for the first time in a few years, I went back to Washington, D.C. for Continental Congress.  I was one of many pages who attended from Tennessee!  For our Page event, we went on a night tour of monuments.  I was also able to sneak away with a couple of friends to visit the National Portrait Gallery.

2019 Tennessee Pages at Continental Congress

And then this month, we had our annual Tennessee Juniors Retreat.  Earlier this year, we lost an incredible member, Rebekah Lemley.  She was our State Outstanding Junior last year and one of the kindest souls you could meet.  So while we were cleaning up Old Fort Park in Murfreesboro, we also planted a dogwood tree in her memory.  We also attended the Constitution Week Bell Ringing at the State Capitol.

As you can see, it's been a busy year for these Daughters, both in service and in celebration!  If you've found this blog while searching for information on joining the DAR, check out more of my DAR-tagged posts.
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