Nashville Highlights

I have Nashville on the brain. We had an awesome time there with family over New Years, and then when we got back we saw this article in the New York Times, declaring Nashville the new “it” city. And then there’s the fact that I’ve sort of been fueling my new obsession through the show Nashville, which is just too much fun. I would watch it for the music alone, but then there’s Connie Britton. I think we’d all watch her fold laundry because she’s just that good. It’s always been funny to me that I haven’t spent more time in Nashville, since I grew up only three hours away. But I think that’s part of why it feels so much like home to me–a river city in the South, full of music and kind people and good food. I am so glad I have family there now, and I plan on getting back as much as I can. It doesn’t hurt that my amazing brother-in-law had these city guides and local chocolates waiting for us when we arrived! (Let me tell you, I need some more Goo Goo Clusters in my life. Sooo good!)

On our first night in town we hit up the impossibly cute Cafe Coco, which provided a cozy shelter from the pouring rain. Also: completely delicious Greek salad.

After dinner we popped over to the Opryland Hotel, which is really a magical place at Christmas. So many lights! The only time I’d been there before was when I was about 10, and I remember being dazzled. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen such an enormous Christmas tree. It was so big it had actual presents on it, as ornaments. Word.

It was actually pleasantly humid inside, so I had to take off all my layers.

Winter wonderland!

Also: orchids everywhere!

The next day we went to the beautiful Belmont Mansion, and…it snowed all day! It didn’t stick, but it sure was gorgeous. We Southern girls never get over the excitement of snow.

We also got to hear a little bluegrass. Fun!

I’m not gonna lie and tell you that our little trip to Jeni’s in East Nashville wasn’t a highlight. I have never seen more interesting ice cream flavors in one place! If I lived there, I’d be there every day. Especially since they are so nice and do not at all mind you trying, say, nine flavors before you decide.

Brambleberry crisp and honey pistachio!

On our last day in town, we got a tour of Vanderbilt from Eric’s brother, who is an alum. It was cold, but cool to hear about the university from his perspective. Our impromptu tour was put together for a young lady who was visiting on a day when there were no tour guides available. Andrew to the rescue! I loved the sculptures. I named this one the Giant Peppermint.

But some of my favorite memories are from the time we all spent around this table at the house that Eric’s parents rented for all of us. We had a lot of amazing meals and wonderful conversations, and I even got them all to play Scattergories with me! Best in-laws ever. I miss them so much. Thank goodness for (copious!) pictures!

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