Sometimes running away for the weekend is a must-do; and when one of your oldest and dearest friends is getting hitched only five hours south, you pack up and go. Ben was reluctant, with the house and all that fun, but agreed that getting away would be good for us since we haven’t been away since my friends wedding in Florida last July. So while he was at work, I packed up a bag so that we would be ready to go when he got home.
It rained from Cincinnati through Kentucky. Not just a little either, it was pouring most of the way. An omen if you ask me. BUT THEN, three hours into our trip we were blessed with not one, not two, but three rainbows! I am not even joking this rainbow arched over my little car for more than a half hour. It was there while it was still raining, it was there when the sun was going down and for a while, even after there was no sun! But wait, Kayla, how is there a rainbow without any sun. That my friend is a question for God.
That rainbow helped dismiss any idea of bad omens for our trip and, without going into too much detail, we really were supposed to be in Nashville that weekend 🙂
If any of you know Nashville you will know that this past weekend was a BIG one down there. Luke Bryant and Brad Paisley were playing shows and graduations galore were gracing the Music City. It was packed! We try to be very cheap travelers so instead of staying inside of the city, where hotels cost ~on average~ $350 a night, we stayed just twenty minutes out at the Hilton Garden Inn Smyrna. Our king sized bed was great because I got to stretch out (I am a bed hog, ask my husband) and we were just close enough to get to whatever sight we wanted to see that day!
Before heading down to Nashville, I had made a list of things we might want to do or see while there. First of all, Nashville is hopping! There is so, SO much to do down there from food to museums and live music. I wanted to do it all! But with a wedding Saturday night and a need to get back not too late on Sunday, we were limited. But goodness if we didn’t want to make it out to see Brad Paisley performing at the Opry! Next time, next time….
On Saturday we kept it light, we had a wedding at 5 and we were getting dolled up. So after a bigger breakfast then we needed we headed out to visit Traveler’s Rest. This plantation was the home of Judge John Overton, a close friend of President Andrew Jackson, and his family; so much history is nestled on this property dating further back the the Civil War including the battle of Nashville. The mansion is amazing, so much deck space, and the property is gorgeous. There are so many different kinds of trees and buildings, I was in awe. Not to mention a crew was setting up for an outdoor wedding right there on the plantation which made me just a bit jealous. If you’re heading down to Nashville I would recommend going to see Traveler’s Rest and BONUS, if you grab one of those “Things to do in Nashville” pamphlets, usually available at any hotel, you get $2 off your tour price.
Before we left I asked Ben if we could live in a house like this one someday, obviously I mean check out that porch? He said yes, the wonderful husband he is 🙂
Now the wedding, goodness. My friend, Kayla funny enough, got married in a very small intimate setting with her and her hubby’s family in the Sheraton Grand Nashville Downtown Skye. As the sun set and we were surrounded by the city lighting up slowly, it was truly magical and I am so beyond happy for the two of them. I had not seen her in two years before her wedding and I cried, and I am not a crier…alright that is a lie. I wasn’t a crier until about two years ago. Details, details.
On Sunday, with only a little bit of time, we headed to Centennial park right but Vanderbilt University. This is a MUST SEE. The park is beautiful and has a very relaxed vibe. Groups of people littered the grounds next to the Parthenon, sitting on blankets or playing Frisbee with dogs. It reminded me a lot of the National Mall in D.C.
Not only did we get to see this awesome structure that I am obsessed with, I have a serious love for Greek Mythology and need to get to Greece here soon, but there was an Art Festival happening just a few yards away. Tents lined the park in two huge circles, food trucks made food that smelled amazing (too bad we had brunch at the Waffle House only an hour before) and there were so many different forms of art being show off and sold.
These are the kinds of things I love to see happening; the life and culture of the city on an everyday basis. Although I am sure many of the people walking through the fair were probably tourists like ourselves, the artists of Nashville and the surrounding area were there. Festivals and fairs like this do happen all the time but I am really happy this one was going on while we were there. Even though we didn’t take home the $1,500 hand carved side table….one day, one day.
If you are heading to Nashville you definitely need to check out Centennial Park and one of the historic plantations. Next time we head down, hopefully soon, we plan on seeing a show at the Grand Ole Opry and touring the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.
Have you been down to Nashville? What were your favorite sights?