Uptown Block Party

So the other day, my boyfriend and I went to a local block party at a neighbourhood park with a few friends from our charity league plus a friend of mine from college. And man, they had me at Mediterranean gyros from a food truck. I was sold. Plus, Bob Schneider was playing and if you’re not from Texas & haven’t heard of him, I’m not surprised. He’s a local to Austin and is pure Texan country. But you’re probably wondering about the segway between gyros and country music. It works, promise.

The Uptown Block Party was a blast. They had food trucks (warm gyros covered in feta and lamb, yummmmmm), Peroni the Italian beer sponsored (don’t worry, Mom, we went over this), and there was live music. I was with great friends dancing on the lawn and trying to pet all the dogs I could without making my own jealous when we got home. It was a blast. 

I’m not entirely sure how they got Bob Schneider to headline a freaking block party but they did. And he was super interactive with the small-ish audience. He’s hilarious, plays acoustic guitar, and is a blast live. My boyfriend and I danced together, were probably a little nauseating, but it was worth it.

I guess what I’m trying to say that even though they had food trucks, a great band, and I was with good friends, it was just as much fun to do something free in the neighbourhood, go to a local park, and just have fun. If there’s something like this near you, I highly suggest going. Worst case scenario, you’ll have a story to tell and suggestions for next year’s block party!

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Crooked Tree Coffeehouse

I went to this spot a few weeks ago after running errands with the boyfriend. Luckily, he loves discovering new spots with me, all in the name of research & caffeine. I mean, seriously. Could I have gotten any luckier? Anyway.

This spot is actually located in an old home and is super adorable. They have a plain list to choose from but the coffee is amazing. I got a simple soy vanilla latte and my boyfriend got an americano. The layout is adorable and feels really cozy. Plus, there’s a great but small outdoor area to sit and would be perfect for a fall day.

I could definitely see myself doing work here and getting lost in people watching as well. The seating arrangements are interesting but just contribute overall to the cozy astethic and like you’re actually in a treehouse. Or at least, somewhere surrounded by nature.

If you’re in the uptown area of Dallas and are looking for a coffee shop slightly off the beaten path, check this place out. It’s cute, the baristas are nice, and it’s worth a second trip. Or at the very least, a second cup of caffeine

Drip Coffee

So I’m sitting in this coffee shop that I stumbled up on Yelp because it’s a day where I got  my hair cut and I need to treat myself. Plus, who doesn’t love finding new coffee shops that smell like freshly roasted coffee beans as soon as they walk in? Just me? Okay fine.

It’s a cute local spot down the street from my hair salon and is very non descript on the outside but their vanilla latte is surprisingly good. Not the best I’ve had but better than expected. And its strong too, which is absolutely fantastic and surprisingly hard to find here in Dallas. But they do have free wi-fi which I throughly enjoy.

And they have ample seating too! Where you don’t feel like you’re taking up space if you sit and stay a while to work or catch up with somebody you havent’ seen in a while. It’s a cute spot that I just might come back to if I’m running into Trader Joes or getting my hair cut. Plus the name? Too adorable and I’m surprised somebody else hasn’t picked it up here in Dallas or anywhere else for that matter. Very clever, Drip Coffee, very clever.

Anyway, if you’re in the area and need a quick caffeine fix, I’d recommend it. But not necessarily to seek out solely for the ambiance.

3.5/5 

Method Coffee

Recently, a friend recommended this spot over in East Dallas and I decided to take a chance. Their Yelp page looked fantastic, seemed to have the perfect blend of hipster and modern, and their coffee selection looked fantastic. So this morning, since I’m finally over a gnarly cold that had me waking up coughing (gross, I know), I decided to treat myself to a new coffee shop in a part of town I hadn’t really explored yet. Plus, there was a really cute dog in a planter that greeted me when I walked on the patio to go through the front door. Score!

I ordered a 2% lavender latte, a seemingly new go to order for me, and a cinnamon roll. Not the best for starting a healthier lifestyle, but hey. I’ve been better this week so sometimes you just need to treat yourself, right? Hopefully  your answer’s the same as mine – an enthusiastic yes!

What I really enjoyed about this spot is that it quickly became apparent that it’s a great place to work. Free wi-fi, ample table space, and enough places to sit where you dont feel too bad about comandeering one for a bit one morning. These are definitely some of the perks I look for in a coffee shop when I’m planning on spending at least a couple hours in to work on the blog, do some research, or even get out of the apartment for a bit. But i think my favourite aesthetic part of the coffee shop is the exposed brick wall they have by the barista bar. I’m a sucker for brick walls with wood accents. call me a secret hipster or the next fixer-upper star, I don’t care. But I love it. Feels super rustic, warm, welcoming, and very homey to me. Maybe it reminds me of my childhood or something, I don’t know.

But if you’re in the Dallas area, specifically just north of deep ellum, you should definitely check out this spot. It’s adorable, decent coffee, and an adorable aesthetic. I promise you won’t regret it.

4.5/5 

Mudsmith Coffee

So Saturday morning, my boyfriend and I were running errands before going to a celebratory brunch and we decided to get some coffee. He originally recommended Houndstooth Coffee but since I’d already been there, we decided to try Mudsmith Coffee instead, which happened to be just down the street.

And oh boy. This place is the pure definition of Texan Hipster. The tables are made of reclaimed wood, they have reusable mugs if you’re sticking around, and there’s mounted deer heads on the wall. It’s a little creepy at first but the coffee’s good, the cranberry muffins are delicious, and you don’t want to punch the baristas. Overall, pretty good experience.

I got the KC special, a latte with caramel and vanilla, and my boyfriend got a cappuccino. Since we’re a little nauseating, we also split a cranberry something or other muffin and it was fantastic. We bonded with a few other people there too over whether or not you should leave your laptop exposed for long periods of time.

overall, I’d recommend this place. It’s in super fun part of Dallas that i want to spend more time exploring and they’re dog friendly too. Their coffee also doesn’t wreak havoc on your digestive system, if you catch my drift. It’s a good spot and I can totally imagine myself doing some work there or catching up on a book.

4/5

Houndstooth Coffee

This place is wicked adorable. It’s off the beaten path in a fun part of town and basically next door to a health food store called Sprouts. Score! Anyway, I had some trouble connecting to the wi-fi initially but that’s because I was inputting the wrong password. #blondemoment.

This place is precious. Their vanilla latte with 1% milk is close to perfection and their motto is “The Pattern of Coffee & People”. It’s a little hipstery but that’s the way I like my coffee shops. There’s even a dude with a man bun and hipster glasses standing in line. That’s how you know you’ve made it, I think, in the coffee shop industry. Plus, there’s a pokestop here for any of you PokemonGO players. Fair warning, it’s addictive and a great way to explore your neighbourhood and get outside. Just make sure you’re paying attention to your surroundings and don’t go anywhere you’re not comfortable!

Anyway, the staff is friendly without being too overbearing and seems to be pretty knowledgeable about their beans & tea that’re in stock. It’s got a pretty good vibe too with a mixture of wood, brick, and also chalkboard walls. I’ll definitely be coming back.

Finally, though this place is a little further from my apartment, it’s got a spark about it that doesn’t feel Texan at all. Well, maybe a little Austiny or San Antonio, but definitely not like Dallas. It’s fun, quirky, and has strong coffee. What more could a West Coast girl want in a coffee shop when she’s in the Lone Star state?

4.5/5

Off To Orlando!

So I’m going to Orlando today for a few days for training and I couldn’t be more excited. I’ve been in and out of airports for what feels like my whole life so I feel like I’ve got the whole thing down. And it’s actually pretty relaxing for me. So what exactly do I do when I get to kick it in an airport, waiting for a flight?

  1. Caffeine. I don’t care if it’s green, chamomile, or black. I need some form of tea. Or coffee if it’s early enough.
  2. Food. Could just be a snack or something easy. But that way i feel like I won’t get hangry.
  3. Reading material. I’m that girl who brings three books on a work trip because I know I’ll still have down time and it’s a great time to catch up on books.
  4. Music. Pretty self explanatory, right?

Obviously, this doesn’t account for travel necessities like luggage, but these always make me feel way more relaxed while waiting for a flight. What are some of your tricks?

Now, wish me luck, it’s my first work trip!