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HM Road Trip- part one

Tyler and I love traveling.  LOVE traveling.  In fact, if you remember our Save the Date/Christmas cards, you know we took a combined 30 flights in 2011!  This year we aren’t taking to the air quite as much, but we’ve been diligently putting the miles on our cars.

(Speaking of cars, Tyler and I have been throwing around the idea of going down to just one car now that we’re officially joining all our assets. What do you think?? Seems to work for some families.)

February took us to Chicago to meet up with our siblings and get our engagement pictures taken.

March had us heading to Peoria to see Tyler’s family for Easter.

April took us back to his parents’ again for his dad’s retirement celebration.

Finally, after quitting my job  at the end of April, I visited my parents and my sister, opposite directions to first South Carolina and then Michigan.

This catches us up to May, where Tyler and I were swept through the flurry of wedding stress bliss and then on to the HONEYMOON!  We’d decided early on to save as much as possible on this trip, in order to put those savings towards a yet-to-be-announced summer vacation.  This meant a two week road trip down to Miami and back, with a 7 night resort stay in the middle curtesy of Tyler’s generous parents and their Marriott rewards points.

HERE FOLLOWS A RECOUNTING OF THE JOURNEY:

(We’ll just dip our toes in the water in this post, covering solely our first stop in Nashville.  Atlanta and Tampa Bay will be next, and our time in Miami last. I also feel like this is a good time to warn that… our whole trip did revolve around food.  We’re the Murphmans after all, and we like food.)

Day 1 we left late morning from Marion and drove down to Nashville.  We arrived in time to slip into The Wild Cow for dinner.  You can read the whole story on that dinner in Tyler’s review on Yelp.  Yes, he was impressed enough to write a review.  Here’s a compilation of awkward  iphone pictures.

wild cow collage
Day 2 we went for a short hike at a park, and stopped for a little honeysuckle snack along the trail.  In case you haven’t been privileged to enjoy said snack before, here’s a little educational video.

Next we headed to a delicious hot dog stand that we once again found on Yelp.  And not only were they HOT DOGS (just my favorite Tyler-unapproved food ever), but they were served out of a VW bus! An actual. volkswagon. bus. I was in heaven.  And the cherry on top… it is called… I Dream of Weenie. I love the show I Dream of Genie.  (Can you guys see what a match made in heaven this was?! I seriously claimed it as my favorite part of the trip when people asked me on our return. And I don’t even care how lame/weird/concerning that is.)  We followed that up with homemade ice cream– of course– but won’t burden you with the jealousy that would ensue should we post a photo of that.

andjustonemore. because i have to.

IMG_1353

We decided to try and walk off that lunch with a stroll around the neighborhood, looking for our signature souvenir.  (Tyler and I started a collection of bowls last summer when we were in Guatemala, and we’ve been adding to it with every trip since.)  Although we weren’t too optimistic, we hoped there might be a little art shop in the area that sold a ceramic dish or something.  We were in luck!  A few blocks down, we found a collection of small stores, and one of them held the treasure we sought.  Really truly regrettably,  I don’t remember the name of the shop or the country from which the bowl originated.  I do remember that it was a really cool place– selling all fair trade or hand made goods, mostly international– and that we scored a real steal with the hand-carved wood bowl(s?) pictured below… only $18!

Here Tyler posed me with the neighborhood sign, so that we could forever remember the purchasing origin of our find. (Although… since this has three bowls in one, and we didn’t have the time to search for bowls in the next two cities, we decided to let this one symbolically count for Nashville, Atlanta, and Tampa Bay– the three cities on the trip down.)

On our way out of town that afternoon, we swung by Dave Ramsey’s recording studio.  Since he and Tyler are besties (just kidding.. but we did spend an inordinate amount of time listening to him on our honeymoon over the course of our whole relationship) we thought it would be good to see if 1. he was in and we could listen to a live recording, and 2. if we could perhaps become the live recording.  Sadly, he was not in.  Disappointment!! But in leu of giving our debt free scream on air (read more about our journey to becoming debt free here), we decided to do a debt free picture.  And obviously, that weird position I’m in = “zero debt here, people!”

Well, folks– (and that’s pretty literal, as we are only expecting our parents to be reading the blog at this point..)– that’s it for the first installment.  We needed some real R&R after the wedding, and we got off to a great leisurely start!  One last photo to corroborate that : )