Weekend Recap – Grand Rapids, MI
Good morning! Probably along with the rest of you, I am not too keen on being back to work (or “real life”) today. Chris and I had such a fun, short weekend getaway and were not wanting to come home yesterday afternoon. It is also finally getting so cold in Michigan, which I think just makes it a million times harder to get myself out of the house in the mornings. I am still on my before-work workout kick, which means I try to leave the house by 6:30, and I am so proud of myself for still getting up and going even though I could see my breath when I stepped outside! And I am really not complaining about the cold – I love it. I am not a summer person. But it just comes as a bit of a surprise every year until I get used to it. Which I’m sure will be sooner rather than later….
Friday was such a fun day. I spent the afternoon running a bunch of errands – Target, visiting my friend Hannah who just had a baby, and going to Sephora at the mall for some new skincare products and makeup. Then I met up with two of our good friends and their one year old son at our favorite wine bar! Chris also met us there a little later when he was eventually able to get home from work. We had a great time talking, eating a delicious cheese/pesto plate, and having a few drinks.
THEN Chris and I were so, so excited to get home and start watching the new season of Stranger Things! We discovered that show last year (along with just about everyone else in the world) and watched it in approximately two days. If we hadn’t gone away this weekend, I have full confidence we would have done the same thing with this season. As soon as we got home I made us a new recipe from Chrissy Teigen’s Cravings cookbook – “cacio e pepe spaghetti” – and some balsamic garlic bruschetta to have for dinner. Both recipes turned out super tasty. The spaghetti was super spicy and lemon-y (which we love), and bruschetta is a staple in our house, so I was very happy to find a bunch of extra tomatoes that needed to be used up on Friday evening. We also opened one of our nicer bottles of red wine and settled in to watch three episodes of the show. It is really intriguing so far!
We woke up fairly early on Saturday morning to pack our overnight bags, make a quick pitstop at Starbucks (where we ran into our same friends from the night before!), and get on the road to drive across the state to Grand Rapids! I love the city for multiple reasons, but one of them being that I lived there for a few years during college and really got to know some fun little pockets of the area. So we stopped in one of those for lunch (Eastown) and went to a restaurant that we know we love called The Green Well. The whole area is different and eclectic, and this restaurant definitely fits that mold. I got a “warm kale salad” with a ton of good stuff in it and Chris got their house macaroni and cheese.
We still had a little time to kill before we were able to check into our hotel, so we took a little walk around the shops and restaurants in the area, but soon got way too cold to be doing that anymore, so we made our way into Brewery Vivant. The whole look of this place really could not be cooler. It is inside an old church and was totally decorated for Halloween on the day we were there. We sat at the bar and had a few beers and couldn’t resist ordering some of their garlic fries, too….
After that we checked into our hotel and headed to the college of Grand Valley to meet my parents, aunt and uncle, and Olivia at Sara’s dance team tailgate before the football game. It was pretty cold and rainy and miserable, but we still had a really fun time, both at the tailgate and at the game. I just felt bad for Sara’s dance team and the cheerleaders dancing in that weather! At least we got to be huddled together under blankets and with umbrellas.
We didn’t make it through all of the game once the weather got really bad, so we headed over to a local pub to shoot some pool and wait for our table to be ready for dinner. It was really nice to spend the rest of the evening with my family, but we were also very happy when it was time to go back to the hotel to put our comfy pajamas on and fall asleep almost immediately.
We woke up on Sunday ready to explore the city! Chris had a great idea of heading there early to find a cute, local coffee shop to get something hot to drink and walk around the city so he could take some pictures. He used to be really into photography and is recently getting back into it. So that was what we did! We had a really fun time and weren’t even too cold, because we kept moving as much as we could.
Then it was time to meet my aunt, uncle, and cousin at another delicious Grand Rapids restaurant for brunch called San Chez. They are typically known for their small plates, but their brunch portions were anything but small. We all ordered a bunch of drinks (coffee, hot chocolate, bloody mary’s, mimosas, water….our table was covered) and hung out while waiting for our food. I got a “vegetable hash” which turned out to be a medley of deliciously cooked vegetables (peppers, onions, spinach, tomatoes, avocado) on top of some spicy potatoes, all topped with a ton of cheese. And on the side was some wheat toast and a black bean quinoa cake. It was perfect!
After brunch it was sadly time to head home. We had a beautiful drive back though, with a bunch of sun and all the trees changing colors. And when we got home we immediately got to work on some re-arranging! We want to re-do one of our small bedrooms, so we needed to clear everything out of there (it was a makeshift office) and either find new places to put the pieces or get rid of them. We ended up clearing out the entire room and setting up a new office area in our sitting room, which I just love! I also love getting rid of things and loved seeing the huge pile of stuff out on the curb. 😉
Then we went to my grandpa’s house for dinner and called it a night! It was a really fun, busy weekend.
I hope you have a great day!
What did you do this weekend?