Field Trip to Cincinnati

Ever get that travel bug and you just have do something new like RIGHT NOW? Well B and I felt that rumble last weekend and took a field trip to good ole Cincinnati! Just the two of us, just a two hour car trip, and just for the day. It was spontaneous and new, just how we like it!

We had originally planned to meet our best man out there and make a weekend out of it but he had to cancel last minute but we decided to still go up anyway. I’ve only explored the IKEA on multiple occasions so I was ready to branch out! The few items we had on the agenda were these three things:

  1. Eat at Tom + Chee – an amazing tomato soup and grilled cheese place that I found out about on Shark Tank
  2. Go to Nike – had to exchange a workout top B got for me in Chicago and we don’t have a Nike near us
  3. Jungle Jim’s – all we needed was some exotic beer but I had no idea what this place had in store

Just 3 simple places. How hard could it be? Well, when we decided to look into our trip (the night before) we found that those three places were all over the city and not very close at all. Whatever, we had all day, right? So who cares?

First stop: Downtown Cincy.

After arriving safely to the city, I Yelped the closest Tom + Chee (as they are now a franchise thanks to Shark Tank) and we look for parking. I don’t know what it is but parking can be so stressful. The streets weren’t even that busy but it was a new city for us and we were clueless. We started following these signs around for “$1 Parking” but we couldn’t ever find where the HECK to park for a dolla! Then we pulled into a garage on accident and it was $12 dollars for 4 hours so we drove right back out and parked on the street. No where close to the restaurant. Whatever, we could stretch our legs, no big deal. We walk the couple blocks to the place and guess what? CLOSED! Our whole trip was ruined!

No, just kidding. It was actually fine that this one was closed because we got to go to the original and it was awesome! B and I ordered the same thing: Grilled cheese with a glazed donut for bread, cheddar cheese, and bacon. Suuuuuper healthy. Then a cup of creamy tomato soup. So scrumptious! Then we had to get seconds and opted for the BBQ that had BBQ chips inside, heavenly. And I was tweeting @Tomandchee the whole time we were eating and turns out they are bringing one to Indy, Christmas came early this year!

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Yeah it was mouthwatering. B and I now know the trick to the donut bread so we’ll be making our own until the Indy location opens!

Next stop: Cincinnati Premium Outlets

Going with the flow, we decided to drive up north to the outlet mall and browse around after exchanging my top at Nike. Well… the browsing turned into a full on shopping day and we trekked around those shops for 4 hours! In the summer sweltering heat… it was ridiculous. But we got some great deals because, it’s so weird, but every time we go to an outlet mall, they have awesome sales for ONE DAY ONLY! And we seem to make it each time! We are sooo lucky.

 Final stop: Jungle Jim’s

We finally went to the hallowed Jungle Jim’s International Super Market and holy crap is that place over the top. We went specifically for the beer selection. B had his buddies sent him orders so he could load up which basically made it look like we were raging alcoholics with a cart filled solely with brews… don’t be a hater.

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Jungle Jim’s is like every grocery store across the world smashed into one obnoxious stop. And then sprinkle in a couple of the the old singing characters from Chuck E. Cheese… badda-bing, there you have it, overload central. They literally have the boat from Gilligan’s Island and on top… your favorite General Mills breakfast cereal mascots signing random crap above the fish aisle. Oh, it’s strange.

Then we high-tailed it out of there and made it home by 11pm. An exhausting but super fun day trip where B and I got to be totally spontaneous even amid the struggle of road-tripping 🙂

 

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Flying High, In Style

If I am flying I will definitely include a few extra items in my carry on. I usually fly Southwest (free baggage, whattttt) and can check in the day before pretty quickly so I board in the A group frequently. Because of this I will bring a backpack as my carry on. I throw all my shiz in the pack, walk on the plane, find the first window seat available (usually within the first 5 rows, I call those Southwest first class, because everyone likes the aisle for some reason, and throw my bag under the seat and I’m set. I need easy access to what I have specifically packed:

Don't overpack

  1. Blanket – I’m always cold
  2. Inflatable neck pillow – for neck or lower back
  3. Earplugs – you KNOW I can’t handle people talking around me
  4. Book – not any of that Kindle crap, I want a real book
  5. Granola bar – already hungry, hurry up with the pretzels, this bar’s going fast…
  6. Southwest free drink tickets – yup

Boom, ready to fly. If it’s super early or late, I’ll bust out an eyemask to ensure I get some sleep. My husband usually falls asleep before they even give the safety spiel, so jealous.

My ultimate outfit for airports and flying:

Fool proof Trip outfit

Nobody wants to grudge through security shlepping a bunch of crap so I like to keep super simple. I put all the necessities in my backpack, including purse items. I don’t want to have to worry about my purse and backpack and carry-on so I consolidate. I usually bring my laptop so I like my old college pack since it has a cushion spot just for my computer.

Then as far as my outfit is concerned, I want something comfortable and minimal. But layering is great for coast to coast travel and temperature of the plane. Leggings are my best bet. Downfall being no pockets but that’s what I have my pack for! I like long socks and I’ll want to bring boots on my trip anyway so it saves room in my suitcase if I wear them. Then I pair my leggings with a long top. Gotta cover that butt because leggin’s a’int pants. Period.

Depending on the time of year and where I am traveling, tank top or long sleeve really just depends. I like to know if it gets to warm, I can escape from my sweater to cool down. That brings me to my last piece of clothing, a flowy sweater. I love the lack of restraint, very simple. Then again, depending on how cold it is, I will wear the one heavy coat I want to bring on the trip so I can, again, save room in my luggage for all the crap I won’t wear!

Then last but not least, a nice soft scarf. Gotta have the infinity wrap around, another way to add layers. Then I like to have my watch so I’m not constantly pulling out my phone throughout the terminal.

And voilà, that’s my perfect flying outfit! What are your go to outfits? Keepin’ it simple or dress to impress… TSA?

 

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Trip Preparation

Last minute packing defines my travel prep. I procrastinate like none other and mainly because there is still so much to prepare for in my mind. There is laundry yet to be done, I need to buy some more deodorant, where is that one jacket that keeps me comfortably warm (but not too warm) on the flight? Oh, we’re driving? Then obviously I’m going to pack twice as many things than I need because just ‘what if’ it rains, then I should bring my boots, or an incoming cold front? I will need a heavier coat just to be safe. Throw it all in the backseat and roll out!

It gets pretty ridiculous. And even if when I finally get all of my items together and cram them into a smaller suitcase, I have forgotten something. One time I straight up forgot to pack any pants. ZERO PANTS. We were driving to Chicago after work and I was randomly wearing a nice outfit with dress pants… those are the only pants I had. Luckily my friend who was hosting us is my same size and let me borrow some of hers. Then I had to go and buy pants at the GAP in downtown Chicago… I mean honestly, who forgets all wearable pants?EXPERIENCE IT.

Though that was a very rare case since I usually over pack to an extreme. Hauling all sorts of shoes for separate activities or different options in case the weather drastically changes. Majority of the time I pack my running shoes even though I will 100% not be performing any fitness-centered activity on the trip. None whatsoever. They usually just sit at the bottom, eyeing me every time I unzip the top of my suitcase.

I also take the liberty to include every toiletry imaginable. This is fairly ironic considering how low maintenance I describe myself but every trip, without fail, I have a plethora of creams, gels, pastes, and sprays. This is even more interesting because of the TSA requirements of specific ounces and container sizing and yet, I still manage to carry on all this crap in the designated Ziploc baggie BUT NEVER USE THE ITEMS. EVER. Do you do that? Go through extraordinary lengths to include items on your trip and then forget you even have them because you rarely use them in the first place? Sheesh. The only one I ever use is my hairspray. That’s it.

Here is an example of a well thought out packing list that I should use myself. Let’s say it’s for about 3 days in the winter, so heavy clothing options:

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Another trait that plagues my packing skillz is the utter lack of caring what I look like. I usually procrastinate to a such a point where I have run out of time completely and therefore “Pssh I don’t care what I look like… I’ll just wear the same pair of pants for two days and then hopefully get away with a workout outfit…”. Those thoughts run through my head so often because it’s 1am and I have to be up by 5am. Then I instantly regret those thoughts when I land and realize I have not packed anything that can be worn in normal society. Whateva.

 

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