We are definitely fans of breakfast/ brunch spots so when we heard that Maple Street Biscuit Company was opening a second location in Chattanooga we knew we had to check it out. My parents had been to the downtown spot and raved about it but we never made it down there. This new location is right by the mall and all the other little shops we are always going to so it was much more convenient.
Although the name implies delicious biscuits, there is plenty to enjoy on their menu. I’m a major fan of waffles myself (like my girl Leslie Knope lol) so when I saw those on the menu I had to have them. Even better when they come with chicken!
Hubby has become a fan of “The Farmer” which is a biscuit with chicken, bacon cheeses and apple butter. He also grabs the hash brown cake as a favorite side item.
The food was delicious and the service was great too. Everyone was so nice! We’ve been back quite a few times and love to grab a to go order on our lazier days. One of my favorite aspects of the restaurant is the way they call your order. Each time we visit there is a different question posted on a board. Your answer to the question is the name of your order. Questions range from the name of your favorite Disney character to what you’d name your autobiography. It’s funny to hear the responses being yelled out. “Mickey Mouse order up!”
Definitely check them out the next time your in Chattanooga looking for a breakfast bite. You won’t be disappointed!
It’s something new everyday for sure. But it’ awesome. We are constantly amazed at the fact that we have a son and he’s here in front of us instead of wiggling around in my tummy. He’s absolutely adorable.
So what has changed?
–Sleep is nonexistent!
Okay so it exists but it in small fragmented portions. The first 2 weeks he took it easy on us and slept pretty well. Week 3 brought about clusterfeeding and that was a BEAST! He was up almost every hour wanting to eat or just kind of fussy. I know things will level out again but at times its hard to remember that.
–There is no schedule
This little guy determines the plans for the day. Things are planned around his needs for food, sleep, changing, interaction, etc. When hubby was off too it was a little easier but due to the lack of paternity leave that lasted about a week and a half.
For example it’s taken me a few weeks to write this post…#thestruggle
–We have strengthened our relationship as a team
Although there are definitely times when stress is at an all time high and affection is running a little low, we are still a team. Hubby wakes up for the diaper changes throughout the night and asks what I need when I’m being held hostage on the couch by this little milk monster. He takes the little guy off my hands in the evening after work so I can squeeze in a nap or wash my hair. It’s those little things that make me love him even more.
What’s the same?
Nothing is the same! lol just kidding but our life has definitely experienced some major changes.
–The adult-ing don’t stop This might sound like a duh moment. I mean of course we are adults, we’re parents now. But I mean we still have to take care of bills, groceries, car maintenance, etc. all while keeping this lil wiggle worm healthy and entertained.
–We are still Erika and Tracy.
We are often referred to as “mom” or “dad” now by family and friends but we are still individuals. That means we still have needs, interests and thoughts that don’t necessarily include our little bundle of joy and that’s okay.
So in summary…
Parenthood is a beautiful new experience. It’s something that you really need to prepare for the best you can; mentally, financially, spiritually. And even with all that preparation you still won’t be fully ready. It’s exciting, tiring, stressful, and amazing all at the same time. But it is totally worth it 🙂
I don’t know why it took almost a year to write this post but the fact that I still think about this place often says something! We actually found another one on our way to Atlanta for our anniversary weekend and had to stop!
But about our first visit…
We stopped here on our way back home after a fun filled weekend in the Pigeon Forge area back in February. The place itself was very trendy looking. I wish I would have taken more pics of the awesome wood décor and giant ceiling fans but I was much too hungry.
*It breaks my heart to tell you this location (Sevierville) is closed, but there are others! Don’t give up!
Once you step inside you are greeted by delicious smells and a great menu supplemented by local craft beers and wine. The menu included signature burgers or the chance to build your own, hotdogs, fries and onion rings, as well as frozen custards. Hubby got a beer and we got a “locals discount” for having a Tennessee ID. Pretty cool!
The food was beyond delicious and they boast natural products like beef without added hormones or antibiotics. The fries were hand-cut and amazing. The burger buns come “branded” which I thought was a cool touch.
This place was delicious and definitely worth seeking out! Head to their site to find a location near you!
But there are always moments in life that remind you of how great He truly is. Being pregnant is an amazing blessing but knowing the type of person I am, I’m always going to have some nagging worry in the back of my mind.
I have had smooth sailing throughout my pregnancy; no morning sickness, still able to work out, no major food aversions ( I’ve always been picky lol). But when we had our 20 week anatomy scan they gave us a bit of news that had me stressing. The doctor said the baby looked good and his heart rate was fine but they saw a small dark spot on the ultrasound near his chest that they were concerned with. I had to have a follow up appointment with a specialist.
*And cue the freak out!* I was a wreck as soon as I left the appointment. Like hysterical crying and all. I knew it could be nothing, but in my mind it could also be EVERYTHING!
Well my follow up appointment was a week later, which is today. In that time I prayed harder than I had in a while. I always prayed over our lil guy but now I stopped many times throughout the day to thank God for bringing me this far and to cover our baby.
We had our appointment this morning and….they saw nothing! The little spot was gone. They said it may have just been a shadow or something when they did my last ultrasound. They took plenty of pictures and lil guy was just kicking and rolling around. They said our baby looked good and healthy!
I cannot thank God enough for hearing our prayers!
I also feel like this little test was a reminder to us that parenthood can be unpredictable and even scary at times. It will be our job to remain as calm as possible for our little guy and continue to put our faith in God.
And as my devotional today said…
“There are always going to be troubles. These are aspects of life that we need to embrace and realize that with God’s help we are going to get through them.”
Well it’s been a little bit since we’ve blogged but man we’ve been busy. We moved to a new place and that is tiring enough but even more so when you’re 5 months pregnant. Thank goodness my parents and our good friend Chuck came through to help.
We were also without a computer for a while but it decided to come back to life so we are hanging in there!
I admit I’ve been on Summer break as a teacher and thoroughly enjoying it but honey has been working non-stop. And cooking in his free time. We’ve really got to try to get some of his recipes up here to share.
Next up on the agenda is planning an anniversary trip/ baby-moon.
So what makes a relationship worthwhile? We aren’t experts for sure but we are approaching 5 years of being together and 1 year of marriage. And with that experience I can truly say that what matters in the long run is the little things..
Little things like
*Starting the day – Do you rush to make it out the door on time? We had to make the sacrifice of getting up a little earlier because we love having time to just sit together on the couch, breathe, and pray before we start our day. A set of books that really helped us in this practice is Thirty One Prayers for My Husband & Thirty One Prayers for My Wife. Even if you don’t live together, a sincere good morning text or call makes a difference.
*Coming home – Just like when starting the day, when you come back together take time to be present and appreciate each other’s company. Sit the phones down for a few and catch up or watch a favorite TV show. Or start cooking up dinner together. Just enjoy being together.
*Showing you care – Don’t wait until a holiday to show love to your mate. We leave goofy notes for each other anytime one of us goes outta town or has to be away for extended time. Figure out something small and feasible you can do to show and little love.
*Do your part – A romantic relationship, like any other, requires work & compromise. Make sure you are doing your fair share. For example my husband is the chef of the house so I try to stay on top of the dishes. I’m always begging him to drive but always volunteer my car.
Take time to attend to the little things and it can really make the relationship more meaningful.
We looked at Groupon and popular travel sites when planning our honeymoon but we got a better deal with my teaching association (score!). When and where you travel for your honeymoon is definitely going to make a difference in the final cost. We traveled to Mexico in July so that could have been pretty pricey but it pays to shop around!
We made sure to get our passports about 3 months before we planned to travel. My passport had my maiden name since I knew I wouldn’t have my license changed by the time we traveled.
**It doesn’t hurt to mention you’re on your honeymoon when traveling. You never know what kind of perks you can score, like free champagne on the flight 🙂 **
We stayed at a Viva Wyndham Resort. There were onsite restaurants as well as a buffet area, a little club and hang out area, gift shop, pools and direct access to the beach, plus other common amenities like a gym and business center.
The food wasn’t that impressive but I am one of the world’s pickiest eaters. The unlimited drinks definitely made up for the food lol. Plus I packed a few snacks and grabbed some whenever we hit the gift shop. And in all reality we weren’t there for the food. Our agenda mainly included lounging on the beach, parasailing and splashing around in the ocean.
We ventured off the resort a few times to shop and go to a few other restaurants (and find a Starbucks!) There were a few stores and shops within walking distance. Whenever we wanted to travel a little farther we took a taxi cab. Not too expensive.
Overall our honeymoon was amazing! We stayed about 6 days.
Honeymoon Planning Tips
– If you are going out of the country make sure you apply for your passport early
– Consider buying a “dummy” ring for the honeymoon. I knew I would be heartbroken if something happened to my ring so I bought one off Amazon that resembled my ring and left the real one safe at home.
– Have a currency converter on your phone if you are going out of the country.
-If you’re heading somewhere with a beach you should definitely hang on the beach at night or catch a nice sunrise. (We did both lol)
– Soak it in!! It won’t last forever
When we got back from the honeymoon our marriage certificate was waiting! It came so quick because our wedding planner made sure to mail off the marriage license ASAP. I quickly changed my name on my license and S.S. card when we were settled back in at home. There are definitely some things I haven’t changed over yet because..life happens. But I’ll get to it eventually. Men are so lucky they don’t have to deal with name changes!
Now we are approaching month 8 of being happily married! Time flies when you’re madly in love ( and working, and adulting!) It has been such a beautiful adventure so far, looking forward to even more fun.
Thanks for reading our wedding series. Questions? Want a list of our vendors? Let us know 🙂
There are many wedding events leading up to the big day. Of course you have your choice of what all you want to participate in.
– An Engagement party
– Bridal Shower
– He had a Bachelor party
– Rehearsal Dinner
So after our rehearsal dinner hubby and I went our separate ways. I stole my mom away from my dad and she hung out with me for the night. We got all emotional and she painted my toes. I finished up my vows and started on my letter to Tracy. Then we went to sleep ( after a lot of tossing and turning!).
Hubby’s bachelor party was the night before the wedding. He had a fun time with the guys then woke up to grab food and make it to the venue.
The next morning I woke up to get my hair done. Then I met my ladies at the venue so we could hang in the bridal suite. We relaxed until make up time. I was so excited I couldn’t eat since the rehearsal dinner but other than that I was good lol. My mom got us Subway for lunch but once again, couldn’t eat.
My wedding planner had everything running like a well oiled machine so I didn’t have to do a thing. We hung out in the bridal suite playing music, scrolling through our phones and taking pics until it was time to start getting dressed. Then we took photos in and outside. Hubs arrived sometime between us taking photos but the guys were in a separate area.
Tracy and I did first touch photos and exchanged sweet letter but did not see each other before the wedding.
After his photos and mine we headed back to our areas and waited until it was time to start. Then one by one my ladies left me until it was just me and my maid of honor. We had a sentimental moment and then she was off too! Next thing you know, my dad was waiting for me :). We had to carry an umbrella because it started to sprinkle but they say rain is good luck right?
Then down the aisle we went. It was all a blur. I saw Dad. I saw my Honey. Everything else was just a blur of love and flowers lol. The ceremony was short and sweet! Then guest headed to a cocktail hour while we took family photos in the ceremony space. We had pizza and Chicago mix popcorn as well as a few drinks available during the cocktail hour.
Then our bridal party entered to the “All That” theme song and hubby and I came into the Lego Movie song “Everything is Awesome”. We had our first dance to “Stay With You” by John Legend. Dad and I danced to “What a Wonderful World” and Hubs and his mom danced to “Mama” by Boys 2 Men.
Then food time :). Our caterers were amazing and after we filled out a survey they provided us with the best menu ever! Standout items include Caesar salad skewers, Burger sliders, Macaroni and Cheese Egg Rolls, and Honey and Porter Glazed Chicken Lollipops. We also had a signature drink for bride and groom.
We did cut the cake but we skipped the garter and bouquet toss. We planned on doing them but we ended up having too much fun to want to stop for those events. Plus to me, having him go under my dress in front of a crowd is just a little odd.
We had a photo booth which was a blast and we got copies of all the photos as well as the guests right on the spot! Our DJ was awesome and we had a donut tower.
We had a sparkler send off before loading up in the limo and rolling out.
We took the limo around the city, (then to our apartment because my handsome new husband forgot to pack an overnight bag), then back to the hotel. We arrived to cheers at the hotel which was pretty nice. They also had wine and chocolate in the room. We ordered some food to the room and crashed! The next morning we had a great family brunch in the hotel.
Then my parents helped us bring home our gifts and wedding accessories. We relaxed for 2.5 seconds then started packing for the honeymoon!
So after we soaked up all the fun and love of being engaged we (mainly I) started planning. He provided input but I was definitely the one more into all things wedding related. Hubs answered my incessant questions pretty well and didn’t complain about me watching every wedding themed show on TLC, Oxygen, etc.
While planning for the event is amazing, make sure you plan for the marriage as well! Marriage counseling was important to us so we attended classes through our church and a great organization called First Things First.
I wasn’t originally thinking of hiring a wedding planner but when my mom and future mom-in-law both suggested it I listened up and started my research. After all I was finishing up grad school. And even though it can be lots of fun, wedding planning can also be a great deal of work. I looked up a couple different people and scheduled meet ups at Starbucks. I think it’s important to meet in person. You will be trusting them with a very important day.
Types of wedding planners (from my experience)
– Full wedding planner: handles practically everything; budget, securing vendors, scheduling meetings, day of planning
– Partial planner: manages vendors after you secure them, budget & handles day of planning
– Day of planner: handles only Wedding day coordination
We went with partial planning to save a little money. I will say from my experience it was ABSOLUTELY worth it to hire a planner.
I purchased a wedding planner binder off Amazon. I used it somewhat to help organize my thoughts and it did have helpful information but there were some sections I didn’t utilize. The Bride to be Book is more of memory book to keep photos and thoughts in. The 5 Love Languages is a good read for anyone but definitely someone in a relationship.
Vendors & Wedding Shows
When it came to finding vendors (caterers, florists, etc.) my wedding planner provided a list of suggestions and I did some research on wedding sites like The Knot and Wedding Wire. Reviews can be crucial and give you some insight about what you could be dealing with. Message boards can be a big help too! Once again it’s important to meet up with these vendors when possible before making decisions about who to go with.
Go to all the wedding shows you can! They are the best place for freebies, ideas and meeting vendors. We met our Photo booth guy at a wedding show.
Stationary & Websites (or Apps)
Many sites will send you free samples of wedding invitations, save the dates, etc! Check out sites like Magnet Street , Minted and Wedding Paper Divas . I got all the freebies I could before making a choice on who to go with. We bought magnet Save the Dates and sent them out 4-5 months out. We sent invites about 2-3 months out.
We made a wedding website and app with AppyCouple. It is a paid site but there are free websites available as well. The app helped me organize guests and was super easy to use. To me it was definitely worth the pay and I found a discount code!
*Speaking of apps there are tons of wedding apps to use while planning and coordinating. My favorites were…
– The Knot Wedding Planner
I found my dress the weekend of our engagement party at the White Room in Lebanon, TN. I went through about 8 dresses before deciding. My mom, aunt, cousin, future mom-in-law & future aunt were there. 🙂 I ordered shoes from Zappos.
My bridesmaids lived in 4 different states so I let them pick dresses from Weddington Way . I picked about 8 dresses in my color choice (after getting a swatch in the mail) and the ladies picked from those. I wasn’t picky about shoes. I ordered jewelry for them and myself from Charming Charlie for a pretty reasonable price.
I ordered my flower girl dress from Etsy. Etsy was the go to on lots of other wedding stuff like her flower girl basket, the broom we jumped, and more.
Hubs had the guys send measurements to a local tux shop. He picked out navy suits and coral accessories and the shop ordered them for us.
Hubs and I are approaching our 7th month of wedded bliss! Since we were so recently married and it’s the month of Love I though it would be the perfect time to share a little of our personal story. I have broken it down into 4 parts and plan to post one a week…plan to lol
Proposal & Engagement
The Big Day
Honeymoon & Beyond
I gave some background in an earlier post but we were together for 4 years when we got engaged. We lived together about 3 of those 4 years. I’m not gonna lie, I was getting antsy about us getting married because we knew that’s what we wanted to do but I had to realize that it wasn’t up to me and my timeline. Plus I knew he had talked to my Dad about it so I tried (keyword “tried”) to calm it down.
I was in grad school and had horrible 4 hour Saturday classes back to back. Luckily one Saturday the afternoon class was cancelled. Tracy had been asking me all week what I wanted to do that weekend but all I could think about was school so I kept putting it off. He made plans for us but wouldn’t tell me what they were. He picked me up from my morning class and took us to get massages 🙂
I didn’t think anything of it, we had gotten a couple’s massage before, but he was acting a little goofy as we filled out forms beforehand. We got great relaxing massages and then they left us alone to get dressed. I was looking for my jewelry in my purse and was getting frustrated that I couldn’t find another ring he had bought me (probably to shut me up some lol). I was even more upset he wasn’t helping! Frazzled and still digging through my purse I said “I can’t find my ring!”. He answered, “That’s not your ring, this is.” I turned around and he was down on one knee!
When we left the room everyone was cheering. He had told them he was proposing when he made the appointment. I was so excited!! We went to dinner and called all our family and a few friends. We purposely waited until the next day to post anything to social media because we wanted to enjoy it privately. It was our celebration after all.
We also took time to enjoy being engaged (about a month) before we started any real wedding planning. Of course I bought all the magazines but that was just for fun 🙂
We had an engagement party in November.
We also took engagement pictures. Totally optional of course but I’m always down for a reason to throw a party or take photos! We were engaged for 10 months total.