4th of July Weekend, Breweries, Food & Fitness!

My days are all out of whack cause of the holiday, but I can’t believe it’s Thursday! Woah. This weekend is going to be fun. I had plans to go out of town but scratched them for a relaxing weekend in Charlotte with friends and DIY projects. I’ve been obsessed with getting projects finished around the home. I didn’t get too much done last weekend because my brother came home, and we were all over the place. It was a lot of fun, and I enjoyed seem him. He has a super busy month ahead of him because he’s moving from D.C. to L.A.! I’m sad he’s leaving D.C., but happy I get to visit him in L.A. I’ve never been, so I look forward to exploring. I am planning a trip there late August.ย 
I hope you all had an amazing 4th of July weekend, celebrating America, and enjoying delicious treats! As I said earlier, my weekend was very eventful. I was excited to share this recap with you because it was a lot of fun! I did write a recap post on Monday, just in case you missed it! I know some of you had to work, but some of you were out and about. ๐Ÿ™‚
On Sunday, we decided to explore Charlotte and go on a mini brewery tour.
It was so hot out that we could only handle so much. Our first stop on the list was Heist Brewery in NoDa. I prefer Heist in the fall because of the pumpkin beer. It looked like they had an impressive brunch bar going on.ย 
My momย and Meighan ordered spicy bloody mary’s, and a side of donuts. I was the DD, so I stuck with water. To be honest, unless it’s wine, I prefer water!
ย We stopped at VBGB next, and this was so much fun. I love breweries with activities and games, and this one had them all. We were all pretty hungry, so we ordered some appetizers. We ordered the fried jalapenos with a side of hot cheese and totchos (which I highly recommend.)ย The totchos had fried tater tots topped with homemade beer cheese, fire sauce, roasted red peppers, corn, black beans, jalapenos, and sour cream. These were super spicy and vegetarian-friendly for my brother. I could only eat a couple of bites because my mouth was on fire, but they were really good!
Some of you may have already seen our giant Jengaย game on Instagram story or snap chat, but it was so much fun! Luckily I didn’t lose, and there was no beer harmed in the falling of the Jenga pieces.ย 
I have no idea how to play Chest, so nope.ย 
We played a couple of games of cornhole (bags,) and that was so much fun. My dad and I are actually building some for their yard.ย 
After sweating our faces off, we headed to the next brewery.ย ย 
I was excited about this stopย because KOMBUCHA! My mom and I split a flight.ย 
Our flavors: Lost Rose, Strawberry, Good Ol’ Ginger, Mint Condition, Wake-Up Call, and Blueberry. The blueberry, ginger, and strawberry were my faves.ย 
The little brewery stops were so much fun. ย Meighan is a fit firecracker, but she gave my dad and brother a run for their money when it came to the beer!
Everyone was super hungry, but I needed a pick-me-up ASAP. So did my mom, so we stopped at Central Coffee Company for cappuccinos. I also picked up their famous vegan zucchini bread for everyone in the car. They were just as obsessed as I was. My mom even went back and bought more to take to work with her. If only I could get my hands on that recipe.ย 
We decided to make one more stop before ending the night. We headed to another popular spot in Charlotte, Macs Speed Shop. They have the best smoked meat and bbq! I split wings, sweet potato fries, and salad with my parents. The reason I love their wings because they are grilled and not fried. So much healthier.
ย On Monday morning, T.C. went to my gym with me for a workout. I had one of the best workouts! I was soaked in sweat and so sore the next day. I know it maybe scary or intimidating to workout on the main floor by all the body builders, but you’ll be more motivated to go hard. Just try to step out of your comfort zone and do it! Watch yourself in the mirror and pay attention to proper form.

Heres what I did: 3 Rounds of Cardio & 4 X 3 Rounds of Strength!

Cardio Round #1:
10 Minute-Mile Job on Treadmill

Circuit Round #1
10 Bicep Curls (10 lb weights)
10 Overhead Extensions (15 lb weight)
10 Squat Overhead Presses (10 lb weights)
X3

Circuit Round #2
10 Bent Over rows (10 lb weights)
10 Tricep Kickbacks (10 lb weights)
10 Jump Squats
X3

Cardio Round #2:
10 Minutes High-Intensity Stair Master

Circuit Round #3
50 Jump Ropes
25 Bicycle Crunches
15 Bench Presses (30-70lbs on bar)
X3

Circuit Round #4
10 Chest Fly (10 lb weights)
10 Push Ups
10 Burpees
X3

Cardio Round #3:
10 Minute-Mile Job on Treadmill

As if the workout wasn’t enough, my brother and I headed to the Riverwalk to walk a couple of miles.
We definitely worked up an appetite! My brother is a pescetarian (mainly vegetarian), so I wanted him to try out Luna’s Living Kitchen. I knew he’d LOVE it. It’s one of my favorite spots in Charlotte. We started out with the “Yo La Mango” smoothie. They split it into two cups for us. It had mango, banana, matcha green tea powder, spinach, hemp milk, and I had them add kale as well. So tasty ๐Ÿ™‚ย 
We decided to order two meals to split. We went with my favorite, the Fire & Brimstone Burger, and Living Burrito.
ย The living burrito hadย sunflower seed refried beans, cauliflower rice, sprouts, pico de gallo, guacamole and cashew sour cream wrapped in a collard leaf, served with a side of house hot sauce and a local green salad. So so so tasty as well.ย 
The fire & brimstone burger comes with homemade gluten free quinoa-millet veggie burger spiced with chipotle sunflower hummus, onion, cucumber, guacamole and house hot sauce. It’s amazing.
I was so excited for my brother to try the Waldorf Salad. Theirs is incredible, and I could probably eat it by the bucket. My brother was also impressed. The Waldorf Salad has broccoli, green apple, celery, walnuts, raisins and red onions tossed with house cashew mayonnaise & garnished with sprouts. ย 
My brother was getting practice at food pics.ย 
It wouldn’t be a complete lunch in Charlotte without a stop at Not Just Coffee. Meighan met us at the 7th Public Street market for coffee when she got off of work. I ordered a small cappuccino, and T.C. ordered an espresso caramel macchiato. He loved their coffee, so it was an afternoon win!:) I had so much fun on Monday. I had fun going to the breweries, but the gym and healthy eats are more my style.
On the way back, we stopped at the peach stand in Fort Mill, SC, to check out their hot sauce and pick up some peaches for my mom.

The dogs were ready for a walk when I got back ๐Ÿ™‚ Or ready for a magic carpet ride? They claim carpets. It’s funny.
Before cuddling up on the couch with Kyle to watch a movie, I prepared some egg cups for the week. I added sweet potato slices to the bottom of the pan, poured my egg mixture in, and places a little square of cheese on top. ย I also made homemade banana muffins and a giant fruit pizza for the 4th.ย 
These are perfect for breakfast or a post-workout treat.
On Tuesday (4th of July) I headed to boot camp with Meighan and our friend, Caitlin. I woke up at 6 am to get coffee in, walk the dogs, and then we walked 1.5 miles to the gym. It was so tough because I was sore from my workout the day before, but I powered through. The hardest part was the sprints. We had to sprint for 30 seconds, walk for 30 and repeat that eight times. Sprints are great for burning fat and your abs.ย 
Plank star jacks with gliders…ouch.ย 
I was DRIPPING after that class. It’s funny because I can run ten miles in the heat and maybe sweat a tiny bit, but circuit training has me dripping within ten minutes of class.ย 
After our workout, we headed to Little Spoon Eatery for brunch.ย 
I was all about the coffee, and still too wound up from the workout to have an appetite, so I ate half and took the rest home to Kyle.ย 
Kyle was sending me these snaps while I was at the gym, and they melted my heart. HOW CUTE ARE THEY!!?!? I just had to share.
After getting cleaned up from the workout, I took my book and a bottle of wine over to my parent’s house for the 4th of July. We spent time by the pool, and T.C. was enjoying his tube gymnastics.ย 
My mom made burgers, veggie burgers, beans, shrimp, potato salad, corn, deviled eggs (omg hers are the best) strawberry dessert, and other little appetizers.ย 
I had to take a photo of my dad’s ultimate 4th of July plate.
I had beans, a deviled egg, beans, a veggie burger & beef burger in a lettuce wrap, corn, and potato salad. I wanted to save room for coffee and dessert.
This is the fruit pizza I made the night before! It was so good, and there wasn’t a slice left. Becca came over for coffee and to spend time with my family. We played Fibbage, and it was so fun! She and my Dad won every round.ย 
Leo had his eyes on the prize. ๐Ÿ™‚ I headed home a little later, and fell asleep on the couch. I was SO ZONKED from the weekend and being in the heat. Plus all of the workouts. My energy was shot. No fireworks for me.
Yesterday morning, I finished up some workย and then had breakfast after walking the pups. I had two egg cups and a protein shake before heading out on my bike ride.ย 
My bike ride was going to be my rest day.
I headed to the Riverwalk, and it was so hot out that hardly anyone was on the trail. I felt like I was all alone and I loved flying down the hills. My bike speed read 23 MPH at some points.ย 
Next time, I’ll bring a book and lunch so I can sit here and read. This is my favorite spot on the trail.
I was a sweaty mess. Luckily, I packed sunscreen so I could reapply over and over again. ย 
Riding my bike is one of the best stress relievers. Listening to music (on the trails only), flying down the hills with the wind blowing in your face, and being out in nature is so therapeutic.ย 
I enjoyed every mile ๐Ÿ™‚ย 
After my ride, I stopped for some coffee. I picked up a small cappuccino with skim. I also chugged two bottles of water.ย 
I had an early dinner. I had a turkey wrap, peaches, lettuce with Greek dressing, and potato salad.
And so much for a rest day. Kyle was heading to the gym, and I decided to go with him. I had a second whim of energy and picked myself up for a Tabata class. I’m glad I went because the class was challenging, and it gave me a boost of reassurance. I took this class three weeks ago, and I couldn’t walk for two days afterward, and this time I was speeding through the workouts, and I feel great today. It’s crazy how strong you can get in three weeks if you stick to something.

Questions for you!
1. When friends/family visit you, what is one thing you must show them in your city?
2. Do you ever deal with rest day guilt?
3. What did you do for the 4th of July?

Now, I’m off to the craft store! I’ll be around tonight after the gym to reply to blog comments:)

Comments

  • Tammy

    Hahaha you really do look like his twin! Where has Karlee been?

    Reply to Tammy
  • Nicole

    You may have answered this in a past post, but I was wondering what type/make of bike you have? Thank you!

    Reply to Nicole
  • Kathy

    Hi ya Taralynn
    I live on the East coast of the UK and am surrounded by beautiful beaches, so when we have visitors we always go along to do beach walks along the coastal pathways. Our city, Norwich, is fabulous with oozles of old world character and History.
    I’m along distance swimmer, having completed a one way 11 mile lake swim last September and several 6, 7,8 and 9 mile swims in different lakes and rivers across the country. I don’t train daily and have learned that my body needs rest and recovery to progress.
    I’m a Sports Nutritionist and a Vegan myself, so always enjoy your food posts ?
    No 4th of July here ?

    Reply to Kathy
  • Anonymous

    Looks like fun!

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Hay

    Are you and your brother twins?

    Reply to Hay
  • Lena

    Happy 4th!

    Reply to Lena
  • Kacee

    Hi Taralynn,

    I LOVE your blog!! You have the best recipes and you are seriously the prettiest. Thanks for being such a huge healthy living inspiration. I love how close you are with your fam too! You guys are always hanging out and it seems like sooooo much fun!

    Just wanted to say thanks for being YOU! xoxox

    P.S. Your bro is suuuuuch a cutie!! Is he single? ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Reply to Kacee
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Kacee!

      Thank you for the sweet comments :):) Love my family and friends! They are the most important people in my lives!

      Hahahaha he is not ๐Ÿ™‚ He is engaged to Karlee! She’s bee apart of this blog since 2009.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Mary

    Your mom’s deviled eggs look so good!

    Reply to Mary
  • Carly

    I’m so excited to hear you’ll have the chance to visit California this summer! I lived outside of LA for 6 years and love it! If you find the time I suggest Runyon Canyon Hike for some great outdoors near the city!

    I just moved home to Colorado, so now when people visit I feel like I actually know where to go (instead of feeling like a lost puppy in a city I happen to live near). We are in Colorado now so I always take visitors outside! Hiking, biking, stand up paddle boarding whatever my visitors are game for!

    I always feel so lazy on rest days and have to remind myself that you have to recover from exercise!

    It was great to be back in my small home town for Forth of July! Our town has a great little parade and street fair in the morning and then bands and fireworks at a nearby lake at night! 4th of July might be my favorite holiday because its always summery and warm and who doesn’t love fireworks?

    Reply to Carly
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thank you! & I’ll take all the suggestions!!

      I also can’t wait to visit Colorado!

      Yes, that is so true.

      Sounds like you had the perfect 4th!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Ashley

    Hi Taralynn, I will be visiting NC for the first time ever in the beginning of September and I was hoping you might be able to recommend some options for workouts (either running trails or classes)! We will be in Charlotte, Asheville, and Charleston. I always see places on your blog but I thought you might be able give your top few! I am so excited but my boyfriend and I really want to stay on top of our workouts!

    Reply to Ashley
  • Lace

    Charlotte looks fun!

    Reply to Lace
  • Anonymous

    Does Kombucha have fizz?

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Kirsten

    1. When friends/family visit you, what is one thing you must show them in your city?

    In Vancouver – do the Grouse Grind (a mountain trail climb) if they’re up to it, walk the Sea Wall, or bring them to Tower Beach to sit on driftwood with thermos coffee. If they’re here in summer, pack secret beach drinks and watch the intensely orange sunset at English Bay. For food: sushi, Japadog, any vegan restaurant, and the best seafood everrrr.

    2. Do you ever deal with rest day guilt?

    I try to reframe rest day guilt as “it’s great how much I prioritize being active lately, but am I starting to get obsessive in an unhealthy way?” If I’m more antsy to be moving than guilty it’s okay, and if it’s guilt that I’m not ~making gainz~ I try to reflect on why I’m being obsessive.

    3. What did you do for the 4th of July?

    I’m north of the border, but July 1 was a great night of fireworks and hanging out with my coworkers.

    Reply to Kirsten
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Kirsten!

      Ohhhh, I’d love to visit Vancouver one day! All sounds so amazing & I’ll be remembering your list.

      Great way to look at the guilt factor. I’m definitely dealing with that.

      Have a great week!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Taylor

    Were you at Target yesterday? I think I saw you!

    Reply to Taylor
  • Angela Sharbono

    I have been reading your blog for several years now and I really enjoy your posts!! I don’t think I have ever commented, but I have a question ๐Ÿ™‚ At what temp and for how long do you cook your egg cups? Keep being your authentic self, it is inspiring and fun to follow you!

    Reply to Angela Sharbono
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thank you so much, Angela!!

      I just cook them at 350 degrees for about fifteen minutes. All ovens cook differently, so you just have to pay attention. If you feel the middle of the egg cups and it is bouncy, they’re done ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Anonymous

    I will email you with my book recommendations.

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Marissa

    I LOVE rest days! Sometimes I feel guilty taking them but I know I’ll feel so much stronger the next time I’m in the gym. For the 4th of July I went to the beach and then watched fireworks.

    Reply to Marissa
  • Jen

    All the food looks great. I love the addition of adding in what you’re doing for your circuits!

    Reply to Jen
  • Jen

    Oh, that kombucha bar looks amazing! I’m trying to get downtown to Chicago to go to one that looks amazing. Not to mention kombucha is so good for your microbiome and I love when I can have yummy stuff AND feed my healthy bacteria!

    Reply to Jen
  • Anonymous

    You are killing those workouts girl

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Tammy

    Love the blue shirt you’re wearing. Where is it from?

    Reply to Tammy
  • Debb

    I went hiking on my rest day and ended up being sorer than my actual gym day!

    Reply to Debb
    • Taralynn McNitt

      HAHAHA Literally was just saying almost the same thing. I did hot yoga yesterday and I’m SO SORE today!! It was supposed to be a rest day lol

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Cassie

    Sounds like such a fun week! Your food always looks so yummy, you inspire me to eat healthier!
    1. I live in Roanoke and so I always have to take people to the Roanoke Star on Mill Mountain!
    2. I definitely do. I feel like I should be doing something or else I can’t eat as much. But rest days are so important for your body to heal.
    3. Well on the 3rd I spent time at my co-workers lakehouse, which was a blast! And on the 4th I had a little get together at my place since the weather was crummy.

    Glad you had an awesome week, hope you have a fun weekend!

    Cassie’s Big Adventure

    Reply to Cassie
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Cassie!

      SO FUN!! Sounds like a blast ๐Ÿ™‚

      SO IMPORTANT for your body, it’s just connecting that with your mind that is the tough part.

      Sounds like you had a wonderful 4th! Always a blast at the lake.

      xo xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Brooklyn

    First off, I’m pretty sure you and your brother are secretly twins haha! I’m so glad he got to visit you all ๐Ÿ™‚

    Also, all of your eats this week look incredible! I now need to go make some deviled eggs because the ones your mom made look so good!

    I want to try kombucha so much! I’m just worried about spending money on it and not liking it.

    http://www.justbeingbrooklyn.com

    Reply to Brooklyn
  • Rose

    Love, love, love black bean burgers! Have you had the one from Pinky’s?!?!?! So good. Do you have a recipe for one or do y’all have a frozen one you prefer?

    Reply to Rose
  • Julie

    I would love details on that egg cup recipe!

    Reply to Julie
  • Anonymous

    I don’t necessarily struggle with rest day guilt from working out, but I’ve noticed it’s super hard to me to sit and relax. If i’m watching tv I always feel like I should lift some weights while watching, do some abs, clean…haha my boyfriend finds it super frustrating because I can’t sit still.

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Hanes

    Awww you and your brother look so much alike.

    I totally get exercise guilt. You should write a post on it!

    Reply to Hanes
  • Rosario – Cherrytomate.com

    Hi Taralynn!

    I’ve been following you for the last 4 years and I love your blog, the recipes and your recap posts, it’s very fun to read and a great work distraction!

    I also have a blog and it’s really hard for me to answer all the comments I get and I’m impressed how you reply all of them!!

    I don’t have much comments in my blog as you do, but still is hard to reply all of them. I don’t have much time, but I also think that the comment system I have in my blog is not that efficient (Disqus for WordPress).

    Do you use a comment plugin? How do you manage to reply all the comments?

    Congrats again on your blog ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply to Rosario - Cherrytomate.com
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi!

      Thank you for the kind words ๐Ÿ˜€

      My blog comes with WordPress comments. I keep ALL comments in moderation so that I can reply as I approve. I spend my coffee time replying to comments or try to get in 5-10 every hour. It’s important to me to reply back, so I make sure to fit that time in and do it daily! I really enjoy commenting and getting to know my readers!:)

      xo & congrats on your blog as well!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Susie

    Wow, your parents made beautiful children for sure! I love seeing grown siblings of the opposite sex hang out as friends. I have two brothers that I’m not close to at all and that makes me a bit sad. Does your brother and Kyle get along well?

    You will have so much to see and do when you visit L.A. I’m going later this month, but being that my two year old will be in tow I doubt you’ll be interested in the spots I’m hitting up, haha!

    1. When friends/family visit you, what is one thing you must show them in your city? I’m from San Francisco and nothing is more symbolic to my city than the Golden Gate Bridge.

    2. Do you ever deal with rest day guilt? No. I earned that right to rest.

    3. What did you do for the 4th of July? BBQ, Six Flags theme park, fireworks show

    Reply to Susie
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Susie!

      I think because my brother and I weren’t extremely close growing up, that we are better friends now. We had our own activities and own groups, so now we are good friends. Those friendships take time, and my brother is still my brother, so he still drives me crazy. We know how to handle ourselves lol He’s a lot of fun! Kyle and my brother get along so well! Kyle is the easiest person to love.

      I can’t wait to visit!!:)

      Love the bridge!!

      Good way to look at it!!

      HOW FUN!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Lace

    I want your dad’s plate right now! So hungry at work lol

    Reply to Lace
  • Tay

    Love Meighan’s lipstick!

    Does Becca still blog?

    Reply to Tay
  • Wit

    Sounds like a fun weekend!

    I live in Ottumwa (your home town) and always tell people about the Canteen!

    Did you know your photo is on the wall of fame at our high school? I’m a freshman this year.

    Reply to Wit
  • Harriet

    Wow what an amazing and busy week! Looked like you had a incredible 4th of July. Kombucha tastings! Going to have to find a place near me that does them!! When friends/family visit one place try to take them is canopy tours (zip lining) through native forests, it is truly incredible. Or if they are afraid of heights I take them to the natural spring hot pools for a night swim. I get rest day guilt all the time, usually end up walking the dogs, but today there was no avoiding rest day as I left for work before sun rise and got home after dark. Fantastic recap! Have a great weekend!

    Reply to Harriet
  • Sharni

    Charlotte looks so so beautiful. I love that trail you ride your bike on! There’s not much like that around here – it’s either complete bush land hikes (snakes included) or walks alongside the ocean (lots of tourists). Whenever I have family visit I always take them to this little cafe in the mountains that is super rustic and we order tea and scones with jam and cream. It’s the cosiest way to spend the afternoon. I usually also take them to the beach for some whale/dolphin/turtle/shark watching!

    Sharni xo
    http://www.agirlandgrey.com

    Reply to Sharni
    • Taralynn McNitt

      I really love CLT!

      EWWWW just baby snakes here lol They scare me! (big ones not the baby ones)

      Ohhhhhhhhhh you just grabbed my heart! little cafe in the mountains?? Can I visit!

      I need to check out your blog!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Addison

    I usually take my friends and family into DC to look at all the museums. I don’t live in DC but live about 30 minutes.

    I never feel bad for taking a rest day as long as it is a planned rest day. Although, sometimes I do take an unplanned rest day because my body needs it and I’m okay with that.

    For the Fourth of July, I stayed on a Lakeboat on Lake Tenkiller in Oklahoma. It was such an awesome time!

    Also, your posts are inspiring me to get out and walk more. I’m stuck in an office all day so it can be hard but I always feel great afterward!

    Reply to Addison
    • Taralynn McNitt

      That is so much fun. I absolutely LOVE DC!

      TRUE. I think I do better with unplanned rest days for sure.

      I bet that was fun!

      I bet walking is so great after a long day at work. Connect with nature and clear the mind ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Jennifer

    That is such a hard question because I’ve lived in MN my whole life… usually it’s me going to visit other people! But, if one was to come to MN, I would definitely take them to MOA as that is a huge attraction, and I would also take them to some of my favorite local spots a ways out of the cities, including my hometown!

    I definitely used to feel horrible taking a rest day (when I was constantly working out that is). I hated resting because I felt like I needed to be doing something!

    My 4th of July was spent at the beach, at home for a while, and then Mark and I went to watch fireworks. It was a great day! The entire weekend was super busy too — went to Valleyfair and it was SO FUN to be a kid again!

    Reply to Jennifer
  • Linda

    I love your fruit pizza recipe!

    Reply to Linda
  • Kels

    Where do you get this energy from?

    Reply to Kels
  • April J.

    When people I know come to Fort Worth, the Stockyards is a favorite place to go. Lots and lots of history here. They have tours and shows, even a little cattle drive demonstration. But I also like to take people to some excellent art museums around here. I’ve heard before that we are the “museum capital of the southwest” and I go to school for art history so it’s very much my kinda thing. There are many different types of museums, too, not just art museums. But if art is your thing, we have great ones plus countless galleries worth checking out. We actually have a pretty great zoo, too. Used to be one of the best in the world, and even still ranked as one of the top zoo’s in the nation.

    NO guilt for rest days! I have many unread books and movies and shows that welcome them. Buuut I also have 3 kids, 2 dogs, a husband, and a (currently pregnant) cat, so I’m always running around anyway.

    This 4th of July, we went to a family friend’s 300 acre ranch that sits on the shore of Eagle Mountain Lake. We rode jet ski’s and boats, swam, fished, rode around on Mules (the ones with wheels lol) and looked at deer, horses and antelope on property during sunset, climbed up on the deck and watched fireworks around the lake, then had our own fireworks show. And there was an owner of an upscale restaurant in the family that made steak and shrimp dinner for everyone! It was probably the best 4th of July I’ve ever had. And probably will EVER have. Haha!

    Reply to April J.
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Wow! SO MUCH to do in Fort Worth! Taking note ๐Ÿ™‚

      You definitely live an active lifestyle with the kiddos and dogs! Which ones are harder?? lol

      Sounds like such a fun and memorable 4th!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
      • April

        Oh, I love, love, love Fort Worth!! I would like to move away or travel everywhere when the kids are grown, but Fort Worth will always be home. People go crazy over Dallas, and Dallas has plenty to offer! But I (along with many Fort Worthians) feel that Fort Worth is more “chill” and easy going, kinda laid back. There is a long time rivalry between Fort Worth and Dallas, though. Haha

        Kids. Kids are WAY harder than dogs. Lol! I have 2 kids that are going into middle school. The hormones are starting to churn…oof! I absolutely adore my children, but it can be trying. My dogs don’t complain about eating the same thing for dinner, taking the same route for walks, they don’t complain about bedtime, and are ALWAYS happy to see me. Hahaha I have great kids, though. They make me cards just to say they love me, cook breakfast sometimes, are (usually) respectful and give the best hugs. Makes it all worth it ๐Ÿ™‚

        Reply to April
  • Lace

    I feel asleep before fireworks too! Your pups are adorable!

    Reply to Lace
  • Susie @ Mile High Dreamers

    TOTCHOS?!?! I literally just stared at that picture for a solid minute before moving on haha. I need to recreate those for a fun meal!
    All your food pics just had me in a daze – Luna’s Living Kitchen has so many cool dishes! My mom and I want to come out to Charlotte for a girl’s weekend soon, and I have a feeling all we’ll be doing is eating!

    A must-do when people visit us in Boulder is hiking! There are so many trails here that there’s a good fit for any level.

    I am the worst at rest days. I always feel so guilty, but Ben’s really good at reminding me that rest is JUST as important as working out. And that if you’re not getting enough rest, it doesn’t matter how hard you’re working! And he looks amazing, so I suppose he knows what he’s talking about haha.

    We were recovering from a Red Rocks show on the 4th, so we built a tent/fort in our bedroom and had a movie night with lots of yummy treats! I convinced him to watch the new Beauty and the Beast and he liked it ๐Ÿ™‚ (shhh, don’t tell!).

    Have a great weekend!

    Reply to Susie @ Mile High Dreamers
    • Taralynn McNitt

      YEP. THEY. WERE. AMAZING.

      You must must must go to LUNAS, or at least try those totchos!!!

      Rest days are SO SO BENEFICIAL. I try to do active ones.

      ohhhhh that sounds like so much fun. I still haven’t seen the new B&B!!

      XO

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Rach

    I always have to show my family my favorite coffee shops and Mexican restaurants! I can’t wait to visit Charlotte in the fall!

    Reply to Rach
  • Juliette | Namastay Traveling

    Our holidays were so similar! Spent lots of time with giant jenga and fruit pizza! Have a lovely rest of the week ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply to Juliette | Namastay Traveling
  • Anonymous

    That vegan food looks incredible

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Jessie @ The Acquired Sass

    1. Hmm – we have a place called Mt. Washington, with 2 different inclines that go to the top (or you can drive) and it has a GREAT view of the city of Pittsburgh and the 3 rivers, so that is a must see for sure.
    2. No rest day guilt for me – only guilt when I decide to be lazy and not workout for no reason.

    3. I SPEED walked (13:52 // mile average) a 5K with my friend – I was still dealing with some lingering niggles from a bike accident a few weeks ago, then we headed to breakfast. After that I made a homemade strawberry peach margarita & chilled in our blowup kiddie pool. We grilled out & had a campfire to end the night!

    I would love to make a whole day of a brewery tour // crawl of sorts, I know of a bunch here in Pittsburgh, just have to see if there are enough near each other we could make it work!

    Also adding a giant Jenga sit to the Mr’s honey-do list. He loves when I do that. Haha.

    Reply to Jessie @ The Acquired Sass
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hey, Jessie!!

      Oh, wow! That sounds gorgeous. I’ll have to remember that.

      I hope you’re recovering from that nasty accident! When you posted those Instagram pics, I was shocked! You’re a trooper!

      Your 4th sounded like so much fun!!!

      You should definitely do a Pittsburgh brewery tour!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Katie

    Loved the recap! Your weekend looks like it was so much fun!
    I live in a town of 90 people, so when family and friends come over we normally go to the one little cafe we have in town ๐Ÿ™‚ not much else to show them! haha
    My 4th was spent with my husband (he actually got the day off!) and my family. It was hot and humid, but we had a washers game tournament and lots of drinks were made and drank ๐Ÿ˜‰ and of course we watched some fireworks.
    Can’t wait to see what you picked up at the craft store!

    Reply to Katie
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thanks, Katie!!

      WOW WHAT A SMALL TOWN!!! I bet that is kind of fun sometimes. Awesome your husband had the day off ๐Ÿ™‚ Makes for a long weekend.

      Glad you had a great weekend!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Alaina

    I just have to say that I LOVE the area you live! I have never been to Charlotte, but it’s on my bucket list to go, and I have made it a point to remember and check your posts regarding the area when I do! Plus, your house looks absolutely adorable, as well as your neighborhood, inside and out! Are you near the downtown area? I have a family and should my husband and my occupation allow, we have thoughts of moving to Charlotte, but want to make sure the schools are good. What is your take on this if you have one? Thanks for your input!

    Reply to Alaina
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Oh, I love it as well! ๐Ÿ˜€

      I have my must-see in Charlotte for you to check out when you do come!

      The schools are wonderful here and Fort Mill (right outside of Charlotte) has one of the best in the nation!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Katie

    As usual, I’m drooling over here after reading your post :p Such delicious looking food, girl! You and your brother look so much a like! Seems like a fun time! ๐Ÿ™‚
    -Katie | http://www.meshkomoments.com

    Reply to Katie
  • Lisette

    Looks like you had an amazing weekend! I live in St. Louis, so of COURSE we take family and friends to a CARDINALS game! We are huge fans! Other than that I pretty much stay out of St. Louis because it scares me and I could tell you some STORIES! Which, let’s be honest, after hearing my stories you probably wouldn’t want to venture into St. Louis too much either. lol!

    My husband is a paramedic and works 72+ hours a week. So this year he literally works EVERY holiday. ๐Ÿ™ 4th of July was spent alone with my 1 year old. Pretty lame. I feel like I managed to live vicariously though your holiday weekend! You had so much fun and were so productive! I’m hoping if I read enough of your posts you can motivate me to get my butt off my couch and go for runs and walks and workout and eat better. I’m on of those “I’ll eat healthy tomorrow” people. lol

    I absolutely deal with rest day guilt because pretty much every day is rest day and at night I kick myself for being so damn unproductive. LOL

    Can’t wait for your next post! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply to Lisette
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Lisette!

      hahahaha I do love a good story ๐Ÿ˜€ It’s been a while since I’ve been to St. Louis!

      Lol I know how that goes. I find myself in that slump sometimes as well. LIFE.

      xo xo thanks for reading!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • jordan @ dancing for donuts

    your weekend looked so fun and full of yummy food!! i loooooove giant jenga – it’s way more fun than the tiny version!! also love that off-shoulder top on you ๐Ÿ™‚

    when people come visit me in LA, i always take them up to El Matador in beach in Malibu (if you haven’t been you should go when you visit your brother!!!) and Griffith Park for a hike and the views!

    Reply to jordan @ dancing for donuts
  • Carlee

    I always try to show friends/family something they cannot do in their own city–like Royals baseball games or KC Sporting soccer games. Or big farmers markets! I also love to do the breweries/wineries thing. Most have games or live music that is always fun!

    Rest day guilt is REAL! I think part of it is that working out becomes so ingrained and such a part of my daily routine that when I miss it, my day feels all off. I know I need the rest and recovery, but I do struggle with it. Most rest days become “active recovery” days!!

    Our 4th was rainy! Spent the weekend at baseball and soccer games and then relaxing on the actual holiday!

    Reply to Carlee
    • Linda @ the Fitty

      What do you do on active recovery days? I usually walk ๐Ÿ™‚ or stretch. I can totally relate to workout guilt! Ive done a youtube video on it. I’m so done with it though because guilt is no way to live life ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply to Linda @ the Fitty
      • Carlee

        I usually walk, yoga, or hike and then stretch really well after!

        Reply to Carlee
    • Taralynn McNitt

      I love KC! We used to go there all the time as kids because it wasn’t too far from our home in Iowa. We used to go to the baseball games and camp:)

      I couldn’t have said it better myself. agree 100000%%%%

      Ours got rainy too, but just a bit! Lots of relaxing for us too.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
      • Carlee

        I love KC too, but just here for a few more weeks! We’re making the move to Raleigh (was supposed to be Charlotte, but you know how relocations can go!!!). Any good lifestyle/fitness bloggers you would recommend following?

        Reply to Carlee
  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    What a great, fulfilling weekend! So glad you had fun. The fries from Macs Speed Shop look SO GOOD!! I’m like, drooling!

    I live in Hong Kong and the whole lot of my family – extended etc – live here, and it’s not really big so I never have to show anyone around. Haha!

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

    Reply to Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thanks, Charmaine!

      It was a blast ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m still exhausted!

      I bet there are so many amazing fun things in Hong Kong!! xo xo

      Have a great week/weekend.

      Taralynn

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Sammy

    You and your brother look like twins!

    Reply to Sammy

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