Weekend Recap (Aug. 4-6)

It’s been a little while since I’ve done a simple weekend recap on the blog. Last weekend (August 4-6) was so refreshing so I thought I’d share a bit about it.

One of Brendan and my intentions for the month of August is to have a date night at least once a week. We already spend a lot of time together, but we wanted to focus on spending some quality time together outside of our apartment. Friday was the night we planned to have date night.

During the summer Brendan gets off work a little earlier on Fridays, so we were able to head out for dinner around 5:30 p.m. We chose Olive Garden for our dinner destination.

For dinner I ordered whole wheat linguine with traditional marinara sauce, salad (with no dressing or croutons) and, of course, breadsticks. Since going vegan in November last year, I’ve learned different things you can order from chain restaurants that are vegan friendly. I was surprised and happy to find out that the breadsticks at Olive Garden are vegan!


After dinner we decided to walk around downtown for a bit to get some exercise before going for dessert.

A storm ended up rolling in just as we were walking back to our apartment. So we watched and waited it out from our apartment before walking to get dessert.

We had dessert in downtown Roanoke at Altus Chocolate’s newest location. Altus Chocolate is a charming local artisan chocolate shop/cafe that originated in downtown Lynchburg. Their story is so inspiring and I love that the idea for the shop was conceived after the owners watched the movie “Chocolat”.

Altus Chocolate has been around for about five years now, but since I’m not a big chocolate person I never went when I was living in Lynchburg. When I heard that they were opening up a new location in downtown Roanoke, I was delighted and knew that we would have to go check it out.

Brendan and I had a wonderful experience at Altus Chocolate – the employees were very helpful and friendly, the desserts were rich, flavorful, and pure, and the atmosphere was charming (I especially loved the French inspired music).

I ordered the Rich Hot Chocolate and had it made with coconut milk and no whipped cream, and I also got one of their vegan Coconut Cranberry Macaroons. Brendan got a chocolate chip cookie. The chocolates are a bit on the expensive side, but they are handmade by the staff with the highest quality ingredients. I love the fact that they have dairy-free and vegan options for people like me!

Photo by Brendan
Photo by Brendan


I would definitely recommend a trip to Altus Chocolate if you are in the Lynchburg or Roanoke area and are looking for an authentic chocolate treat. I can’t wait to go back and try some of their coffee.

I am currently reading Chocolat by Joanne Harris, so I thought it was very fitting for me to sit a read a chapter while I was at Altus Chocolate.

Nothing too exciting happened on Saturday (August 5). I spent the whole day working, so didn’t feel like doing a whole lot that evening. Brendan and I ended up getting dinner to go and enjoyed a nice cozy evening in our apartment.

Sunday (August 6) was a gorgeous day filled with spontaneous adventures. After church Brendan and I came back to the apartment and went over all of the chores and different things we wanted to get done that day. But the weather was so nice, we both decided that it would be fun to grab some food and then go on a little drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Well, our little drive ended up taking us all the way past the Peaks of Otter and into Lynchburg. And I didn’t mind one bit. I decided to let go and just enjoy wherever the day would take us.

By the time we go to Lynchburg it was about 2:45-3 p.m. and we were in need of a pick-me-up, so we decided to go to Starbucks. And since we had both brought a book along with us we sat outside in the sunshine and read for a little bit before moving on with our adventures.

Next we ended up driving over to Riverside Park near Rivermont. Brendan and I had never been to Riverside Park before. I can’t believe I lived in Lynchburg for 5 years and there are still so many places that I never explored. The trails were nice in this park and we even came along some pieces of Lynchburg history as well.

Brendan was especially excited about this steam engine we found in Riverside Park.

As we were walking down one of the trails, we stumbled upon the big train trestle over the James River. This is the same train trestle that has seen so many lives taken over the years, including the life of Liberty University student Jon Gregoire. I had never seen the trestle in person, only pictures of it. There was such an eerie hush that hung in the air. We paused for a moment there in silence, remembering those who have lost their lives at that spot.


After the park, we headed to Rivermont Pizza for some dinner. Rivermont pizza is one of our favorite places to eat in Lynchburg. The food has been excellent every time we’ve gone.

Before we headed back home to Roanoke, we made a quick stop to see my brother Jon and his new apartment in Lynchburg. He’s in a nice spot in town and I can tell he’s loving it already. Lynchburg really is a great city and I love going back for a visit every chance I get.

We got back home around 9:30 p.m. It was such a fun, rejuvenating day. Sometimes it’s important to leave the dirty dishes in the sink and the laundry unfolded to get out and explore!

 

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Weekend Wanderings

This past weekend was just the right mixture of adventure and relaxation. Between football games, adopting a kitten, and having both of my brothers stay over, the past few weekends have come and gone without much one-on-one time with my husband. So on Saturday we slept in and enjoyed the fact that we didn’t have any set plans or company coming over.

Since it was such a gorgeous autumn day, we decided to get out of Roanoke for awhile and head to Lynchburg for the day. We spent the afternoon wandering around the streets of Downtown Lynchburg and visiting some of my favorite local shops like the Farm Basket.

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This city holds a special place in my heart and continues to grow on me with each passing day. There was a time when I hated living in Lynchburg – I was starting the second semester of my freshman year of college and was tired of being in Lynchburg and just wanted to go back home. But, as time went on I came to know more about the city and I got to know the people that lived there and my heart changed. I also met Brendan in Lynchburg and that’s where our relationship blossomed. So as much as I tried to fight getting “stuck” in the Lynchburg bubble, the truth is I really do miss this beautiful little city.

Sunday was our day of rest. After getting about 5 hours of sleep and then getting up and going to church, we were both pretty tired. When we got home from church, Brendan decided to take a nap while I curled up on the couch so I could finish reading The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. We originally had nothing planned for the evening, but as I was finishing up the book and telling Brendan how I really wanted to see the movie now, he said “Want to to go see it tonight?”. So we did! We ordered pizza for dinner (we had to do some research to make sure I could order something that was vegan friendly at Dominos) and then got dressed and ready to go to the movies.

I thought that The Girl on the Train was brilliant and the movie adaptation did not disappoint! Emily Blunt did an amazing job playing Rachel Watson and I was pleased that the plot, dialogue, and characters stayed true to the book (very rare to see these days). The only problem I had with the movie is that it was placed in New York instead of London, but I was able to look past that detail and enjoy the movie anyway.

After a refreshing weekend, I’m feeling motivated and ready to be productive. First on the to-do list this week is tidy the apartment! Having a 3-month old kitten living with you can be quite messy sometimes.

Have a great Monday!

 

 

 

Autumn Beauty

It’s been awhile since I’ve been on here. School work and my internship kept me from blogging for the past couple months, but now that I’m home for Christmas break it’s time to get back at it! Last month my roommate came to me and asked if I could take some pictures of her. So one Friday afternoon we drove to Downtown Lynchburg for a quick photo shoot. Portraits are not my area of expertise, but I did like the way these pictures turned out. Krista made my job so easy and she made such a gorgeous model! 🙂