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Newbie Guide to Nashville Tennessee & Nash's Instagram Hot Spots

I went to Nashville for the first time and OMG I want to go back! I'm not even an avid country music fan and was still totally charmed by Music City. I guarantee the unique, friendly and unpretentious atmosphere will enchant you too. Below are highlights on what to see and do in Nashville, Tennessee. 

What to do in Nashville:

Head to the Nashville Visitor Center 

Located inside the Glass Tower @ Bridgestone Arena (501 Broadway, Nashville, TN 37203) Visit Music City has free maps, discounts and they can answer any questions you may have. Plus, I purchased an adorable Nash t-shirt there and took the above photo.

Shop at Draper James

(2608 12th Ave S) Owned by Southern actress Reese Witherspoon this store is darling, both inside and outside. Inside, you can shop the latest fashions and enjoy a complimentary cup of sweet tea (the best I've ever had!).

Outside, be sure and pose in front of its famed blue and white striped walls or this lovely bench. And when you're done, enjoy a walk along the hipster 12th Ave South neighborhood.

Ride the Hop On Hop Off Nashville Trolley

Sure, it's touristy, but also provides a great overview of the history of Nashville. Your pass will allow you to get out of just the immediate downtown area too like out to Centennial Park, a large urban park located approximately two miles west of downtown Nashville, as well as other spots. You can get your tickets on Broadway or at any of their hop on/off locations.

Get a Goo Goo Cluster Bar

The Original Southern Confection. Luscious caramel, smooth creamy marshmallow nougat and fresh roasted peanuts all covered with a thick coating of real milk chocolate. I liked the Pecan version. I made the mistake of eating mine on the plane, once it was too late to go back and get more! Don't be like me, buy as many as you can. It's that good. The retro looking Goo Goo Shop & Dessert Bar also offers cakes, pies, sundaes, milkshakes and floats.

Walk the Pedestrian Bridge 

On my last day before heading to the airport, I accidently discovered the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge, formerly the Shelby Street Pedestrian Bridge, which connects downtown Nashville to the residential suburbs of East Nashville. It was built from 1907-09 and offers great views of the city and waterfront. I was getting last minute souvenirs like the Goo Goo bar when I noticed it on my left and decided to take a detour and am so glad I did.

Drink and Drive a Party Bike

Hop on, pedal, sip! Considering Nashville is a mecca for bachelorette parties, you'll see dozens of party bikes going up and down the street, day and night with music blaring, riders screaming and drinks flowing. While fun to watch, I didn't want to spend the $45 each on this experience. However, if I had a group of friends with me, I'm sure it would be a fun time. Check out Nashville Pedal Tavern or Music City Crawler to book your seat.

Find Your Favorite Honky Tonk

Broadway Street has new and old honky-tonk bars offering live music and drinks all day and night long. It's charming during the day, but at night the neon lights hide the grime and you'll feel like you're in old Vegas even.  At the start of Broadway is Tootsies Orchid Lounge, which is likely the most famous of all the spots with a who's who of past country singers having sung there. Plus, a portion of the Loretta Lynn biopic Coal Miner’s Daughter was filmed inside. However, I thought it was too crowded and expensive.

I prefered Kid Rock's Big Honky Tonk, which has many levels, each offering a different live performance. Head on up to the rooftop for great views, so does Nudies. If you want to avoid the crowds, but still enjoy live music and the electric atmosphere of Broadway, head to Bootleggers Inn, featuring a moonshine of the day and live music throughout the day and night.

During the two nights spent in Nash, I went to probably a dozen Honky Tonks and really, you can't go wrong with any. Just remember, the bands usually play for tips, so don't forget to throw some $$ in their bucket if you're enjoying what you hear.

Take a Vodka Distillery Tour 

Go on a distillery tour of Big Machine Vodka in the heart of downtown Nashville. Tours are offered on the top of the hour Friday-Sunday. $15 for the "Silver" 45 minute walking tour with a tasting flight and mini cocktail or splurge with the "Platinum" tour which includes bottling your own vodka for $69. 

Start Your Night with a Moonshine & Beer Tasting

I've been to Ole Smoky Moonshine's Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge location and was so excited to see they now have a tasting store in downtown Nashville's SoBro neighborhood in the Yee-Haw Brewing Co. building. For $5 you get to sample 13 flavors of moonshine and whiskey. Seriously, you can't beat this deal and it's a really a fun time. Plus, you get the five bucks back toward a purchase if you should choose to purchase some Moonshine or merch.

For $5 you get to sample 13 flavors of moonshine and whiskey. For $5 you get to sample 13 flavors of moonshine and whiskey.

They also have beer flights to try too. After, hang out in the backyard beer garden for live music, corn hole and tacos.

Tour your Favorite Country Star's Museum 

Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash and George Jones all have their own museums that you can tour right near Broadway in Downtown.

Or you can get a taste of every famed country singer at the Country Music Hall of Fame. While I know some classic country from my dad, it's not typically my go-to music of choice. Yet, I was still able to enjoy the modern 3-floor building and its interactive elements.

Pose in Front of a Photo Wall and Nashville's Instagramable Hot Spots

Nashville is an Instagram lovers paradise due to the many murals and street art available to pose in front of.

Here were my favorites:

  • Red Lips Kiss Wall - 1814 21st Avenue South
  • Love Ya'll - 2028C Lindell Ave
  • I Believe in Nashville - Right across from Draper James famed blue and white wall.

Where to Eat in Nashville:

Enjoy classic soul food at Arnold's Country Kitchen Cafeteria (605 8th Ave S). This no-frills lunch spot has country fried steak, yummy pies, and more. Food is made fresh daily from scratch. When you walk in, grab a tray and get in line. Now pick your meat, sides and drink.

Martin’s BBQ joint (410 4th Ave S) The food is so amazing and has a very cool atmosphere in downtown. If the wait for a table is long, you can simply eat at the bar or in their Outdoor Beer Garden

Hattie B's is famous for their mild to very spicy fried chicken, Southern sides & local brews in a casual, counter-service eatery. Expect long lines though. Another popular alternative is Prince's Hot Chicken Shack. If you're staying in Downtown you'll have to Uber or Lyft to these locations.

Nashville's Best Spots for Fried Chicken - Food Network

Newbie Guide to Nashville - What to do, see, eat! Plus, Nashville's Instagramable Hot Spots

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The Developmental Powers of a Playground

This post was sponsored by Landscape Structures as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

Three Oaks Park in Estero, FL designed by Landscape Structures
I can not count the number of playgrounds that we have visited in the last several years with my active twin boys as it's one of their favorite past times by far. They especially love showing off their monkey bar skills to the older kids.

I also can't count the number of gasps from girl moms after seeing my lil tag team waving from the highest points on the play equipment. It was during one of their fearless feats that I decided to just go with it and sign them up for gymnastics, where they could continue to swing, climb and tumble.

My monkeys showing off on the monkey bars

Even now that they are almost seven they never tire of spending an hour at the playground. Fortunately for my boys, we live near two Landscape Structures - Three Oaks Park in Estero, Florida and Lakes Park in Fort Myers, FL. Landscape Structures designs better playgrounds that welcome all ages and abilities. They are the signature gathering spaces for communities and offer the most innovative play experiences.

Giving kids the freedom to play at such fantastic facilities allows children to gain confidence through mastery and self-discovery and can really nurture small psyches and instill lifelong skills.

Plus, it makes me so proud seeing them boldly go up to kids that they don't know and ask, "Do you want to play?" Such innocence and life lessons. I believe it really prepared them for Kindergarten and helped to develop their social skills in general.

The interactive Landscape Structures' dinosaur slide and climbing/discovery equipment at Three Oaks Park

Check out the following Landscape Structures video to learn more about the importance of play:

The Developmental Powers of a Playground

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Where to Eat in Paris

When in Paris, France of course, go see the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre, but let's be real? As a country renowned for its world-famous cuisine, food is one of Paris’ main attractions. The following bites have been tried and tested options that you must eat to believe while in the City of Love.

Where and What to Eat in Paris

When to Eat in Paris

The French enjoy eating small, but delicious snacks and dishes throughout the day. Thus, don’t feel guilty about stopping for a pastry and an hour later for some cheese or macaroon. I didn’t!

Dinner is a slow affair to be enjoyed and while you might like to eat early normally, try you’re best to make a reservation later in the evening to best enjoy the atmosphere and to dine with locals. 8 p.m. or later even.

So, enjoy a pre-dinner drink at Louise's by the Louve and Mon Coco

Sip the Best Hot Chocolate in Paris

Angelina (Est. 1903) So nice we went twice. This dark liquid is pure chocolate heaven. Unlike our watered down options in the U.S. this is rich melted chocolate. It’s how I imagined the water in Willy Wonka in the Chocolate Factory tasted like.

Warning: There will likely be a line out the door, but don’t let it deter you as it moves quickly and the tea room is adorable. However, on our second visit, we passed the line and went through the take-out area to order our Hot Chocolate to go in an adorable pink cup.

Go to a French Brasserie for Dinner

A brasserie is a type of French restaurant with a relaxed setting, which serves single dishes and other meals. It's that typical French restaurant seen in impressionists painting and postcards, usually with red awnings, bottles of wine in the windows and art deco subway tile on the floor.

The space is usually tight and you might have to pull out a table to squeeze in. Be prepared to rub elbows with locals and tourists alike, quite literally.

I'd recommend having your hotel concierge make the reservation for you as they know the staff at the most popular ones and you don't have to worry about speaking French badly either, lol.

We went to several, but my favorite:

Les Deux Magots  6 Place Saint-Germain des Prés, 75006 Paris, France +33 1 45 48 55 25

Champagne and escargot - oui! 

Shop for a Famed Macaroon Sampler 

Macaroons are on display in many store windows, which will have you gawking at the colorful pastries like you would the latest fashions.

You can't go wrong with any of them, but a popular spot is Ladurée on the famed avenue des Champs Elysées 75008 Paris +33 (0)1 40 75 08 75  This is the shop that created the fame of the macaron and their window displays and mint green facade are adorable and so insta-worthy.

Head to the Latin Quarter for Jazz and Night Life

The cobblestone streets of the Latin Quarter are famous for bars and cabarets and is home to Paradis Latin, one of the oldest cabarets in Paris. Order your show tickets ahead of time Online or have your hotel arrange when you arrive. 

After dinner, find your way to the Caveau de la Huchette. A mythic jazz bar set in a 16th-century building in the Latin Quarter has been attracting music lovers since it first opened in 1949. Find a spot at one of the minuscule tables, buy a carafe of red wine, listen to the sultry jazz music and revel in the sheer Parisian-ness of it all. 

Check out Chez Georges, a tiny basement where dancing on tables can happen over the course of the evening or go to WOS (Wide Open Space) Bar, which is a dive bar with a European twist

Enjoy Fine Dining at the Oldest House in Paris

The Michelin rated Auberge Nicolas Flamel restaurant is located in the oldest house in Paris (1407) and has the absolute best food in town.

Love the house and its history and the atmosphere can't be beaten. Each dish is plated spectacularly too and the desserts are wonderful.

Best Pizza in Paris

A few minutes walk from the Eiffel Tower, just off the Trocadéro Square, Mokus l'Écureuil is the place to eat pizza in Paris. 

Food and Travel Guides for Paris

Where to Eat in Paris - Easy Food & Bar Guide

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Game of Thrones Inspired Baby Names and Pet Names

Are you a fan of the massively popular HBO series Game of Thrones? Then why not name your baby or pet after one of it's uniquely named characters? released a study showing a Sharp Increase in Babies Named After Game of Thrones Characters using the most recent data from the U.S. Social Security Administration. The study compares babies born in 2011, the year the show debuted, against babies born in 2017, the latest data available from the U.S. Social Security Administration. As you'll see, the popularity of the fictional names and GOT nicknames for babies has increased.

13 Game of Thrones characters that have inspired babies named after them: 

Baby Names Inspired by Game of Thrones

Honorable Mentions for Game of Thrones Baby Names

  • Brienne
  • Catelyn 
  • Margaery 
  • Myrcella 
  • Lyanna
  • Bronn
  • Jaime
  • Ramsay
  • Petyr 
  • Eddard
  • Cersei

Game of Thrones Pet Names 

Let's not forget your fur babies too. These fierce and old-fashioned names from GOT would work well for a dog or cat.

  • Drogo
    Game of Thrones Inspired Pet Names
  • Hodor
  • Khal
  • The Hound
  • Rhaegal
  • Snow
  • Ghost
  • Lady
  • Reek
  • Greyjoy
  • Daenerys
  • Drogon

Game of Thrones Baby Names and Inspired Pet Names

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7 Benefits of CBD Dog Treats

We all know that dogs love treats and usually hate all things related to wellness and the vet. But, what if you can combine the joy of a biscuit with health benefits for your dog? That’s where CBD dog biscuits come in.

What Is CBD for Pets?

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a compound found in cannabis plants. Most people have heard of it for humans for conditions ranging from chronic pain, depression to helping with epilepsy. CBD comes in many forms including oil, creams, and treats.

If you are wondering if CBD is safe for dogs or any pet, the answer is yes. CBD is effective for all mammals because all of us have an endocannabinoid system. This system is responsible for maintaining homeostasis in the body, helping to keep the balance in the cardiovascular system, nervous system, endocrine system and more.

Since your dog has the same system, CBD will work for them as well! Just like for humans, it comes in many forms for your canine, from oils to creams and, to best of all, CBD dog biscuits.

 How Are CBD Dog Treats Made?

CBD dog treats are created by taking CBD oil and infusing it into dog biscuits. CBD comes from hemp plants, but don’t worry about it having any other chemicals in it such as  THC which is a known hallucinogen found in cannabis plants. If you buy from a reputable seller, the dog biscuits you buy for your pet should have no THC.

Always check to make sure that the CBD in your dog’s treats has been tested by an independent lab to verify that they are safe for your dog.

What Are the 7 Benefits of CBD Dog Biscuits?

The great thing about CBD for dogs is that it can also be a healthy snack when bought as a treat. Here are just some of the benefits that can come from CBD treats:

1. Known Painkiller

Dogs, especially as they get older, often have chronic pain, usually associated with arthritis. They may also have had an injury that causes acute or chronic pain. CBD is known to block pain receptors, helping to put an end to chronic pain.

2. Helps with Epilepsy

According to the Kennel Club, epilepsy affects 1 in 130 dogs in the UK alone. It’s hard to watch your dog go through that, but just as CBD has been able to help humans with seizures, it can help your dog as well.

A recent study found that 89% of dogs who took CBD saw a decrease in the number of seizures they were having.

3. Tummy Problems

Sometimes your dog is just a picky eater, and sometimes they have a delicate stomach. Either way, this can sometimes lead to vomiting and problems digesting. CBD has been shown to help reduce the number of times someone vomits, as well as helping to increase their appetite,

4. Reducing Anxiety

When your dog has anxiety, whether it is from separation or loud noises, it’s hard to soothe them. As much as we love our pets, we can’t communicate to them that they will be okay and to reassure them. CBD has been shown to help work with the nervous system and has been shown to reduce anxiety and panic disorders in humans and can have a similar effect on your dog.

5. Anti-Inflammation

Inflammation doesn’t just come in the form of arthritis, but it can also affect the gastrointestinal tract, joints, skin and any part of the body. CBD is a known anti-inflammatory, working with the body to reduce the inflammation that is causing your dog pain.

6. Boosting the Immune System

The best way to treat any condition or sickness is to try and prevent it altogether. Because it is helping balance the body, CBD can work to suppress an overactive immune system while also supporting one that has gotten weaker.

7. Homeostasis

As you can see, CBD is the perfect way to help keep your pooch balanced and healthy. CBD for a dog can act as a supplement to help your dog remain happy and healthy, even if they are already in tip-top shape.

Where Can I Buy CBD Dog Treats?

Many online retailers specialize in selling CBD dog treats and CBD for dogs in general. Again, always make sure to check for that all-important certification that an independent lab has tested the CBD. A reliable seller should have test results on their site.

 Can I Give CBD Treats to Cats and Other Pets?

The endocannabinoid system is found in all mammals, so CBD can also be great for cats and other furry pets. Always make sure to let your vet know that you are incorporating CBD into your pet’s health plan and to introduce CBD into their diet gradually. 

7 Benefits of CBD Dog Treats

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The Ultimate Spring Break Travel Checklist

Spring break season is finally here! Whether you are planning a road trip, hopping on a plane to fly across the country (or around the world), or just spending a weekend with your girlfriends in the next town over, it’s time to dust off your suitcase and start packing.

If you need some incentive...Southern Living has recently reported that taking a trip with your best gal pals can improve your overall mental and physical well-being. It can refresh you when you're burnt out on work, plus give you quality time with the people who you love most. Forbes reports that women who take advantage of vacation time are less tense, depressed or tired, and have even showed to be happier with their spouse.

If you are counting down the days until you can ditch the stresses of “real” life, the task of packing for a vacation can seem a bit daunting. Thanks to this ultimate spring break travel checklist, packing your bags doesn’t need to be so difficult. Keep reading to find out exactly what you need!

Beach Bag

Since most spring break vacations involve heading to the beach or, at the very least, spending some time hanging out around the hotel swimming pool, a nice beach bag is a must-have item. Set yourself apart from the crowd with an eye-catching monogrammed beach bag packed with all of the essentials.

A good sunscreen is a must for any vacation. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends going with a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 30. It’s also smart to opt for a product that offers water resistance to ensure that your skin will be protected when you sweat or go for a swim. If you want to go home with a beachy glow, a high-quality self-tanner is great.

You’ll also want to load up your beach bag with your sunglasses, a reusable water bottle (make sure it’s empty when going through airport security!), antibacterial gel, headphones, and a book (Jesse's Girl) or e-reader. Don’t forget to throw in a pair of flip flops, too! While your hotel will have towels, you may also want to pack your own bigger beach towels, if you have the space.


The exact clothing you need depends on where you are going and what you are planning on doing. For most spring break trips, though, swimwear is a must. Browse these affordable favorite swimsuits and cover-ups to ensure that you’re ready for long days spent by the ocean or pool.

You’ll also need outfits that are appropriate for your other daily activities. If you are going somewhere hot, shorts, skirts, and lightweight t-shirts are always good options. You may also want to bring a dressy outfit or dress in case you decide to check out a nice restaurant. You can't go wrong with these chic and affordable sundresses on Amazon. 

For cooler destinations, you can’t go wrong with layers - hoodies and jeans. If you are planning any specific activities like hiking, horseback riding, etc., make sure you have appropriate apparel and footwear. Don’t forget about things like socks, underwear, pajamas, and accessories.

When you’re traveling, it’s generally best to leave your expensive and sentimental jewelry and accessories at home. For example, I have a fake wedding ring that I travel with. So, stick with inexpensive costume jewelry and versatile pieces that work well with multiple outfits.


Figuring out what toiletries to pack and what ones to leave home can be tricky. On one hand, you don’t want to arrive at your destination and not have a product that you need. On the other hand, though, you don’t want to weigh down your bags with your entire medicine cabinet and face problems with the TSA or have to pay overweight baggage fees at the airport.

If you are flying and plan on putting your toiletries in your carry-on bag, remember the TSA’s 3-1-1 rule. All liquids, creams, gels, pastes, and aerosols must be in 3.4-ounce bottles or tubes inside a one-quart-sized clear, zipper bag. You are only allowed one bag per person. If you have products in larger bottles or tubes or need to carry more than you can fit in a single quart-size bag, your toiletries will have to go in your checked luggage.

Your exact needs may vary, but when you are trying to keep it simple, we recommend packing travel-sized shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothpaste, moisturizer, deodorant, and face wash. Lip balm is a must-have, too. Stick to the basics for makeup, and bring things like dry shampoo, hairspray, and feminine hygiene products only if you use them regularly or will need them during your trip.

Bring your hairbrush, some hair ties, toothbrush, and toothpaste. Don’t forget to pack enough prescription medications for the duration of your stay. A basic first aid kit and medicines like Advil and Tylenol never hurt, either.


If you’re spending time at the beach, a waterproof case or pouch for your cell phone is a must. Make sure you have chargers for all of your electronic devices, as well as a fully charged portable charger in case you need to fuel up your phone while you are on the go.

When you make reservations for special activities, look at the FAQ section to find out if there are any items that you need to bring with you or if there are any wardrobe requirements. Taking the time to do this could save you from needing to buy gear after you reach your destination. Bring a zip-lock bag for your wet swimwear and clothing. You may also want to pack a few extra plastic bags. You never know when one might come in handy!

Good luck

Few things are worse than arriving at your destination only to realize that you left something important at home. While many items can likely be purchased at your destination, they tend to cost a lot more in tourist areas. You may also have a hard time finding exactly what you need when traveling internationally. Avoid the hassle and expense by using the list above when packing your bags for spring break.

Fashionable One-Piece Bathing Suits Under $30

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