Pittsburgh Botanical Gardens

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A couple of weeks ago I spent the weekend in Pittsburgh catching up with some friends from campus and did a little exploring, it’s funny how when you visit your school / second home in the summer how different it is and feels. I spent a really relaxing weekend soaking up the sun, and exploring new places including this Pittsburgh must see find.

We visited the Pittsburgh Botanical Garden the last weekend of July so unfortunately some of the must-see stops were closed and they were working on the five senses exhibit & the bees were too active to see them too. So, we both agreed we had to come back when they were open in the fall. I had such a fun time looking at all the different flowers, plants and trees and doing a little mini hike through the Pennsylvania woods.

My favorite part was the Japanese Gardens, which had this gorgeous pond with lily pads and these pink and white blooming lilies. I also loved the stepping rocks in the pond, taking in all the sculptures and seeing dragonflies. It was just so peaceful, and I could have sat on the dock near the pond all day snapping away taking photos.

It was kind of hot out but it was such a beautiful Sunday afternoon spent in the gardens and just being one with nature and my surroundings. There weren’t very many people there so it was perfect and I believe it cost $7 dollars to get in. If you are looking for other things to do in Pittsburgh you can check out my travel guide.

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Hope everyone is having a fantastic week and a wonderful Thursday. If there are any fall or going back to school posts you would like to see do not hesitate to leave a comment below.

megan

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A Day at Greenfield Village, Henry Ford

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A day at the village, last weekend was the perfect weather for walking around the historic village that’s apart of the Henry Ford Museum, if you are not from Michigan you might not be familiar with this but it’s something that all Michiganders grow up going to and cherishing as their little piece of history.

If you don’t know Henry Ford the founder of Ford Motor company cherished preserving history and as a little piece of his story he collected houses for his own personal collection in a “small” village out in Dearborn that soon grew to a large size that holds over 84 buildings from multiple decades and homes to many famous inventors and influencers of our time. His own home, along with the farm that Firestone grew up on, the laboratory that Edison invented the lightbulb, the Heinz house, the Wright Brothers bicycle shop and family home, the courthouse Lincoln practiced in before becoming president.

The day was perfect and the weather couldn’t be beaten as we watch some authentic baseball from back in the day, enjoyed a home cooked meal from a tavern in the 1850’s and just walked through time and history for a couple of hours. We visited on a Saturday so many of the farms and houses were being used and meals were prepared. Model T’s zipped down the street as live band music played and the smell of farm animals and steam engines from some of the oldest around wafted through the air.

We stopped at almost all 84 historical monuments in the village while also stopping for a custard and watched the model T’s and omnibus go by. Some of our personal highlights from the trip was of course a meal at the tavern and lodge, watching them cook in the Firestone farm house, and the train round house they used to store and work on all the stream engines. If your lucky you can even push the round about to move a train inside the station.

megan

Detroit Travel Guide

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As I expand and explore the city, the more I realized it was not fair for the Metro – Detroit guide to be shared with Detroit. I have decided to split them up and dedicate an entire page to the gorgeous city that I call home. It’s honestly gorgeous and everything is constantly changing and new things are opening up every day there. Of course like all my other guide this one will be updated regularly with all my new favorite finds.

Things to Do: 

Stay: 

Eats:

Sweet Treats: 

 

 

megan

Wanderlust Travel Bug Bucket List

I have recently gotten the need to travel and I wanna just soak up the sun maybe it’s because of the end of the semester is nearing or the fact that I can taste spring and summer even though it’s still snowing here in the east coast. I just wanna be sitting on the beach with a cold drink in my hand and a cute pair of sunglasses and a swimsuit soaking up the sun with good company.

This post was inspired by Dorothy from Prep in Your Step’s post about her United States post but I wanna take mine a little further since I want to travel the world. I have so many different locations and places pinned on Pinterest that I want to travel too and explore, from a city, a state away, just a neighboring country or the other side of the world I want to do it all and see everything in this lifetime. This is my current inspiration and my dream travel itinerary.

Bora-Bora

Bora Bora Villa tour at the Intercontinental Hotel Thalasso ! Lauren Lindmark is a fashion and travel blogger! See travel photos of the beautiful blue ocean in Bora Bora, French Polynesia on fashion blog daily dose of charm by lauren Lindmark

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I have seen so many vloggers, blogger, YouTubers, and everyone in between recently visit this beautiful island including my blogger friend Lauren from Daily Dose of Charm who was lucky enough to spend the entire week there. The crystal clear waters and over the water huts making it amazing getaway and oasis. Don’t hesitate to check out her blog for more photos along with outfits and guides to traveling.

Banff, Canada

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I have the travel bug for more than just a beachy warm place but breathtaking scenery with lots of trees and maybe a little hiking. Last year one of my favorite videography couple Brad & Hailey Devine from Somewhere Devine visit the beautiful town of Banff and I was drooling over how amazing the images were. I hope one day that I too can take in the beauty and maybe do a little canoeing and photography.

Italy

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Something about Italy, maybe it’s the culture, the rich history or the fact that I heard you can order pasta and pizza at every meal makes we want to go visit. There is just so much rich architecture and history and I would love to walk the streets.

Greece

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Another historic place I would die to visit too hopefully sometime sooner rather than later. With the colorful and beautiful buildings, cities, beaches, and people. I have always felt it’s one of those places you have to visit at least once in your life just to take in all the culture of the world that is around you.

Mexico

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I can’t get over how beautiful and breathtaking all of Caitlin’s photos over at Southern Curls & Pearls, she goes on the most luxury vacations and always knows how to do it right like staying at this over the water villa resort, called El Dorado Maroma in Mexico. I have seriously been in love this this over the water hut ideal and having your own little oasis that I put it on my travel guide twice.

Old San Juan, Puerto Rico

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If you can’t tell I am in love with photography and the way you can capture an image and boy does Parker & Aspyn do that in every photo and video that they post? They recently traveled to Puerto Rico with another videographer couple that I adore Jaci+Leif. The streets are so pretty here and so colorful along with a ton of fresh fruit and fun foods to try. Everything looks picture perfect there.

I have so many places on my list that I would love to visit and honestly it just keeps growing with every new blogger I follow, and every new video or Pinterest pin that I add to my board. If you don’t already follow me on Pinterest I have constantly been added things almost daily to all my boards with ideas and inspiration. I have just so many goals and dreams that I can’t wait to accomplish and cross off one day and traveling has always been a big part of that list.

Spreding Sprinkles & Sparkles,

xo

megan

San Francisco Travel Guide

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Long time no talk but today I wanted to share a few of my favorite spots from my week-long spring break trip to California and the surrounding areas of San Francisco. I have visit surrounding areas such as Berkeley and Davis along with Emeryville and a couple others. I had a blast and the weather wasn’t too bad either. Warm enough to wear around shorts even though I got a few dirty looks from the locals who thought I was crazy.

Things to Do:

Eat:

See:

  • California Berkeley’s Campus
  • UC Davis Campus
  • Golden Gate Bridge
  • The house from Full House
  • ChinaTown (Largest Chinatown outside of Asia)
  • Lombard Street  
  • Coit Tower  

 

I would love to go back to Cali hopefully sometime soon and visit more areas. If you are new to my blog and haven’t seen my other city travel guides I have posted a couple others and look forward to including more in the future.

 

Spreading Sprinkles & Sparkles,

xo

megan

Ice Skating in Campus Martius Park |Detroit, MI

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This past week-long break was much needed and I am so thankful to be able to spend some quality time at home, catching up with family, friends and meeting some new ones. I even got to do a little exploring in the city that I call home, back in the Mitten. I accomplish almost everything on my must-do break list and some things that got added along the way. Including this perfect Saturday afternoon spent at Campus Martius Park in Downtown Detroit.

It’s was the just perfect afternoon filled with ice skating, hot chocolate, photography, and shopping all the little boutiques. I even got to enjoy watching Michigan get beat by The Buckeyes in the Cadillac Lounge that was all decked out for Christmas. If you ever get the change I definitely recommend walking the street of Detroit and exploring just everything the city has to offer. Including walking one of the oldest building the First National Building built in 1930’s which houses the Roasting Plant, Shake Shack, office building and a few other dining options. I was super impressed on how organized, and beautiful Detroit decorated the city for the holidays cannot wait to move back during Winter Break to explore some more.

Check out the entire Metro-Detroit Travel Guide must-dos for more great places to eat, see and do.

Spreading Sprinkles & Sparkles,

xo

megan

 

Pittsburgh Travel Guide

I have an amazing opportunity to be able to go to a university that is right outside a major city. A city that is known for things like Ketchup, back-to-back Stanley Cup Champs, home of the Steelers, icons like Mr. Rogers and a steel city stronger than most. Being able to go to school just twenty minutes away from Downtown Pittsburgh is amazing because I get to spend the day like today adventuring. Locations like PNC Park (Home of the Pirates), the yellow bridges and the rivers that run throughout the city.

The other day I drove into the city and was able to take some breathtaking photos, that I had to share with Y’all. So what better way than to share my travel guide and must-dos of the city of Pittsburgh.

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Things to Do:

Eat:

Sweet Tooth:

 

p.s. This list is always changing and being updated, check back regularly to see the places I have added and been that I totally recommend anyone that visits the city.

 

megan

Metro Detroit Travel Guide || Detroit, Michigan

I spent quiet a fun filled summer back in my home state of Michigan, and my goal was to experience a couple new places I have never tried before. If you are new to the area, planning to visit soon or looking for an awesome place to grab a bit to eat, check out a few of these locations. My plan is to constantly update with all the new places I visit and enjoy. If you have any questions don’t be afraid to shoot me an email or leave a comment below.

Royal Oak:

 

Things to Do:

Eats:

 

Ferndale:

Things to Do:

Eats:

Ann Arbor:

Eats:

 

Dearborn:

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Eats:

Southfield:

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If you end up visiting any of these places or have any recommendation, please leave them down below I would love to check it out or hear about your experience.

 

Spreading Sprinkles & Sparkles,

xo

megan

Big Island City Guide | Kona & Kilo, Hawai’i

I recently got back from a trip to Hawaii’s Big Island and spent time in both major cities, Kona & Hilo and wanted to put together a little guide of the best places to see do and eat together. Not only did I do a lot of research but the group I went with had done their fair share of scouting out the best local places to grab a meal, and places, when to be a tourist and when stopping at a local shack, is better. So if you are planning on going on a trip to Hawaii, I hope this helps on part of your decision making on what you plan to do. Leave a comment below if you have any questions, for food I am a vegetarian but most places we went to fit everyone’s needs in my part.

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Eats:

  • Rebel Kitchen – Tons of Veggie Options, grass-fed hamburgers, homemade juices and teas and a great menu. They also have some pretty cool dessert to choose from after your meal. The seating inside isn’t very large but they do have a large outdoor section that if you’re lucky you can pet the dog (but please don’t feed him).
  • Kona Brewery – Delicious food and a wide variety of micro brewed beers. I would totally recommend any of the appetizers and any of the beers on the menu, they freshly squeezed all their juices for the kids. I totally recommend the strawberry pineapple juice. I would recommend the hummus platter, pizza rolls or nachos looked good. They also have been known to have some of the best pizza on the island. I ordered the mac and cheese without bacon and it was pretty good.
  • Scandinavian Shave Ice – Also know as Scandis by the locals, this might be one of the best-shaved ice places on the island and you won’t have to wait an hour for. They have so many flavors to pick from, and tons of put together choices for those who aren’t good at picking (totally recommend Maui Wowie) they also have a great selection of hard ice cream and waffle cones along with fantastic snow cap designs. Feeling adventurous order a Jumbo and split it with a group of friends. –
  • Bianellis Pizza and Pasta – The garlic and Margaretta pizza were delicious, we ordered out and didn’t eat inside the restaurant. The slices were pretty good and the pizza was a mix between a nice flat bread and a New York style. Loved the flavor of the crusts.
  • On The Rocks – Wasn’t super impressed with the vegetarian options but the view was breathtaking for sunsets, had some amazing tacos and slaws. There was also live music the night we went, and there wasn’t a terribly long wait either.
  • Island Lava Java – Delicious breakfast sandwiches, tons of coffee choices, lots of fruit and a huge mouth watering cinnamon roll on the menu.
  • San Francisco Bay Coffee Bar –  Most adorable little coffee bar downtown with such cute pastries. They serve 100% Kona coffee for a real Hawaiian experience and the décor inside was absolutely adorable. It was a mix of a chic white marble and rustic with exposed wood and recycled wood pallets.
  • Da Poke Shack – If you like raw fish and bowls then this is the perfect place, it’s sort of like the Hawaiian version of a Chipotle bowl, where you can pick 2 sides and a choice of meat and it is laid on your choice of rice. When we went in for lunch they were slicing the fish they caught fresh that morning, an awesome experience. If you are vegetarian or vegan they don’t have much meat options, but you can purchase any of their vegan/veggie salads separately by the pound.
  • Ken’s House of Pancake – If you like American diner food and over by Hilo I would totally recommend this place and seriously bring your appetite because the portions here are huge to what you’re paying for. If you love something sweet for breakfast I would recommend any of their pancakes or french toast made on Portuguese sweet bread. Looking for slavery all their omelets and egg dishes are great, I got the veggie breakfast burrito and loved it. You also have to try all their flavored syrups.

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Stay:

  • Kona Coast Resort – Very spacious rooms, kitchen and living room. They had various activities on site, including basketball, volleyball, shuffleboard and tennis courts along with two different gyms. Just a couple miles away from a major shopping center, with a full grocery store, restaurants, and movie theater. The resort had towels and activities on-site available and everything was super clean.
  • Kona Bali Kai Resort – Had an amazing condo with two full baths, two rooms, and a pullout couch, we rented off of Airbnb and were very pleased with all the amenities and the view of the ocean. Take a walk along the lava rocks every morning to find turtles feeding, and awesome restaurants just walking distance away located in the parking lot. This condo was near several major beaches that you could swim at and only a couple miles from town.
  • Hilo Volcano House / Namakanipaio Camper Cabins – Looking to spend the night only miles away from an active volcano? We stayed in the cabins at Hawai’i National Park and I would totally recommend this to anyone hiking to see the lava late at night or early morning. The bathroom facilities are pretty nice for a campground and the cabins have hotel linens and towels along with one light and one outlet. This is seriously a super upscale version of glamping. Looking to go to the Jagger Museum there is a walking trail that doesn’t take long to reach and save you from trying to park. If you’re a more rugged outdoors man they also had tents and campgrounds that you could spend the night in or stay at the volcano hotel.

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Beaches:

  • Two Step – Perfect for snorkeling, be aware there is a lot of sea urchin and many snorkelers did step on them, a family sitting next to our their son step on one and they took him to Urgent Care. They are sometimes hard to spot and easy to step on when getting in and out of the water when climbing on the rocks. Water, for the most part, is super clear and tons of fish, while I was swimming a turtle grazed my leg. If you enter the water on the far right there are two steps created within the rock making it the easiest access point into the water.
  • Magic Sands – Very high waves, and sandy beaches were a lot of boogie boarding was done. Lots of locals hang out here, they have lifeguards on duty and a volleyball court. The waves are extremely high and can be dangerous if not prepared during high tide. It also can make for a fun day for boogie boarding. Be aware that sand burn (rug burn) is very common and lots of people lose hats and sunglasses, coming in and out of the water.
  • Hapuna Beach  – The beach was beautiful, a lot of sand and a clean bathroom and showers for changing. You do have to pay to park here though unless you show a State ID. The water is super clear and blue and the waves are not very big perfect for families with little kids. This public beach does get very crowded with tourists, and you won’t find very many locals here compared to Two Step or Magic Sands. There are also Lifeguards on duty here.
  • Captain Cook’s Cove – Not a great place for snorkeling due to the murky waters, I would be careful if you do choose to swim here. This cove is great for if you want to see a lot of dolphins or turtles. Dolphins are known to swim here for the day and hang around and they will swim right up to you, but due to the murky waters, this area is known for sharks. We did see pods of spinner dolphins swim by at Magic Sands if this is something you interested in seeing and don’t want to deal with sharks.

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Things to Do:

  • Pu’uhonua O Honaunau National Park – Take the tour of the national park, they have a speaker and an awesome display of games and artifacts. All the landmarks are marked with numbers and they have park rangers out to explain and help throughout the park. And hear the story of why this is important to Hawaiian culture.
  • Rainbow Falls – Amazing waterfall, while you can not swim in the falls it is breathtaking to stop and catch. I totally recommend making the hike and climbing the stairs to see the top of the falls.
  • Mauna Kea Summit – Be above the clouds, and see the stars from up close. Most nights they will bring out telescopes. The museum and movie in the gift shop are awesome to watch about the history of the mountain and there are great views. Be aware that many people suffer from sickness due to the altitude height.
  • Hawaii Volcano National Park – The museum is awesome to look through, but walk through some of the trails to find sulfate and cracks within the earth from the nearby volcano. It does get pretty hot so be prepared, the hike isn’t long and it’s awesome to see all the crystals. You can see the steam and the cracks within the earth from where the lava is. Would be careful if you are pregnant or have asthma this can be harmful and the sulfate is very strong.
  • Jagger Museum – The best place to see the cauldron of lava bubble and boil, best viewed while its dark, recommend at either late at night or early morning before dawn. This is quite amazing to go see, and breathtaking. Be careful if you have asthma or pregnant or have a condition. They have a really nice museum inside with volcanic activity, they also have a gift shop and bathrooms on site.  Parking is limited during peak points but we had walked from the campground that we were staying at.
  • Shopping at Kona Inn Shopping Village – Great place to spend the afternoon or place to walk around for dinner. They have tons of fun vendors and a great place to pick up souvenirs to bring home. Lots of ABC Stores for things you might have forgotten to pack, cute little surf, glass and quilt stores along with agents to help plan an excursion. Numerous restaurants along with a few great places to grab a sweet dessert. Lots of vendors and different stores.
  • The Original Donkey Balls Store – Looking for a hilarious gift to bring home for a friend or family member. This is a cute and fun store to go visit for some delicious chocolate balls. As weird as it sounds, you can sample all the types and they actually are quite delicious even though their names can be kind of deceiving. Also, don’t be fooled there are many other places around the island similar to this, but only one location is the original and authentic Donkey Ball Store.

Spreading Sprinkles & Sparkles,

xo

Meg