29 April 2016

Five on Friday

Anyone else in complete disbelief that it's already the end of April? Where the heck did this month go? How are we only three months away from wedding day?!

Linking up for another Five on Friday with April. 
I took my wedding dress to the alterations shop last week and got to try on the dress again for the first time since purchasing it all the way back in October.

Good news! I still love it every bit as much as I did then, if not more. Between putting on the dress again and receiving proofs for our wedding invitations this week, it's making this whole wedding thing feel like it's beginning to come together. Three months to go!
Columbia friends: you need to check out Twisted Spur Brewery. ASAP.

It's been open for almost two weeks now and I've managed to get over there twice. The food is outstanding {get the chicken fingers, trust me} and their beers are even better. Not a beer fan? That's totally fine. They have a huge selection of wine and liquor {especially bourbon} for you to choose from.

Check back next week for more on Twisted Spur.

Believe it or not, but there's actually an event at Riverbanks Zoo that I've never been to before: the Wine Tasting! Patrick and I are going tonight with my parents and I can't wait. The Wine Tasting is held in the Botanical Gardens which is particularly special to me these days...

I haven't been back to the gardens since the day that Patrick proposed and I'm excited to go back tonight! Just not so excited about the 90+ degree weather we've got in the forecast for today. 

There's a cute furniture shop in Columbia called Carolina Imports. It was previously on Gervais Street {where Twisted Spur is now!} but has since moved out to a new location on North Main Street. Y'all. It has some of the best furniture! I went this past weekend on a mission to find a headboard but instead found some great glass cabinets instead.

I need all of these in my life. Now I just have to have a house to put them in!
Can y'all believe that it's almost officially May?! May is going to be such a big month around here for more reasons that I'm at liberty to share just yet, but trust me, it's going to be a fun one. From weddings to road trips to bridal portraits to beach days to more Fireflies games to summer weather perfect for dining al fresco... bring on May!

{PS - Goose Island Summertime Kolsch = the best summer beer. Ever.}


Happy Friday, y'all! Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!

27 April 2016

#stillnotarunner Seeks Bike Riding, Brewery Loving Friend

 #stillnotarunner Seeks Bike Riding, Brewery Loving Friend.

I am: a pancake-topped-with-powedered-sugar loving twenty-seven year old who adores biking around Kiawah, going to Clemson football games, and exploring new places. I am constantly on the road for something and have a ridiculously difficult time staying put at home for a weekend. I have a wanderlust tendency that my fiancé mostly tolerates but thoroughly enjoys when it involves his favorite football team {South Carolina}, a body of water, or visiting bourbon distilleries. I possess special skills in the art of procrastination but somehow manage to make my bed every single morning right when I get up. I am #stillnotarunner but have run enough races to have lost count of the total number.

You are: definitely a college football fan, preferably not one who cheers "Roll Tide" or whose colors are garnet & black {exceptions have been made, see fiancé*}. When it isn't football season, your favorite thing to do on a Saturday morning is to wake up and hit up a local farmers market, unless you're traveling somewhere new in which case you love to be up & exploring before breakfast. You won't say no to watching an episode of Gilmore Girls for the 87th time and you can easily quote almost every line in the HP movies. You can handle incessant wedding chatter & endless professions of love for Blue Flour Bakery cookies. Your dance skills need not be exceptional but you must be willing to showcase them, regardless of skill level, if at a wedding reception.

Together we'll: travel to awesome football stadiums to see a college football game {or five} while exploring the local college town. Bonus points if there's a stop by a brewery/winery/distillery involved. We'll bike around Kiawah for hours on end from the beach to the bike paths and all the way over to Seabrook. We'll tackle Sephora together because you're probably way less intimidated by that place than I am. Happy hours at the local wine shop after rough days at work are a must.


Any takers?

Either way, hello again to all of my old readers & hey to all of the new faces that have popped up here lately! Hope y'all have enjoyed reading along & that you're super pumped for all things wedding/running/house hunting/Columbia related that you'll see here over the next few months.

26 April 2016

8 Things to Do in Columbia This Summer

Summer? It's only April! Why in the world am I already talking about summer?
...because the temperatures are in the upper 80s/low 90s around here. And because I stuck my feet in the pool this weekend and the water felt really good, not freezing cold. The pollen has already come and gone. The humidity has rolled in.

Ready or not, Columbia, summertime is here. It's time to get out and enjoy it!

1. Go to a Fireflies baseball game.
Y'all all know my love of the Fireflies. Just go ahead and go see them already, k?

2. Hang out on Lake Murray.
Lake Murray is THE place to be on a gorgeous weekend in the summer! No trip out on the lake is complete either without some boiled peanuts. My favorite? The Dam Boiled Peanuts that you can find at the gas station on the Irmo side of the dam.

3. Visit Riverbanks Zoo.
I know that I'll be there this summer to check out the new sea lion exhibit {ps - word on the street is that the sea lions are already in town!} but there's a few other things going on to check out. There's the Wine Tasting {this Friday}, Rhythm and Blooms during the whole month of May, and the Brew at the Zoo in early August {we loved this event last year}

4. Take a day trip down to the low country {Charleston!}
... ok so technically this one isn't something to do in Columbia but if you live here, you know that no summer is complete without a trip down to Charleston &/or its surrounding beaches {Isle of Palms, Folly, Sullivan's, etc}

5. Float the River.
This has been on my list of things to do every single summer. Have I done it yet? Nope. But I hear fantastic things about it from the people who have done it!

6. Explore the local brewery scene.
You can visit each brewery one by one on your own... or you can hop on the Columbia Brew Bus, see several breweries in one afternoon, and have a special tour/tasting at each brewery.

7. Wander through Soda City Market on a Saturday morning.
Because everyone loves local vendors, delicious food trucks, an excuse to be outside, and truly excellent people watching.

8. Visit the museums.
Apparently, it gets hot in Columbia in the summer. What better way to cool off than to visit some of our award winning museums like the State Museum and the Columbia Museum of Art?


Columbia friends: what else should I have on my list of things to do in Columbia this summer??

24 April 2016

Welcome to Magnolia & Main

Hey, is it just me, or does something look a little different around here today?

Welcome to Magnolia & Main!

Otherwise know as the much needed name change {& actual domain!} that I've been putting off for the last few months. To make a long story short, A Southern Twenty-Five was no longer cutting it around here. It was the perfect blog name {you know, until I turned twenty-six...} but it was time to move on.

So yay! New blog name!
But why Magnolia & Main?

... I just really like the word magnolia. You can blame Chip & JoJo for that as well as Hart of Dixie. It's a word that's stuck with me for awhile and reminds me of all things southern. So for me, it was an easy transition from using the word "southern" in my blog title to using the word "magnolia" instead.

This one has a little more behind it. If you had to ask me where my very favorite place in all of Columbia is, surprisingly, it isn't the zoo. Or River Rat Brewery. It's actually Main Street downtown. I love Main Street. One of my favorite stores {Uptown on Main} is located here and my favorite Saturday morning market {Soda City} takes up several blocks of this street. I've been known to take a lunch time stroll or two over here on weekdays {despite working a 10 min drive away} and I find any reason to come to this street. 

It wasn't always that way. Main Street several years ago was a whole bunch of nothing. It was kind of run down and not worth going to. I've loved watching it grow and watching new businesses and restaurants pop up along it. Uptown, Mass General, Bourbon, Cowboys, Persona, etc. It's such a cool area and I love what's being done to it. It's my little place in Columbia.

... and that's how I ended up with Magnolia & Main. Exciting, right?

You'll still find all of your favorite things here:
Clemson football
Wedding posts
Excessive pictures of alligators
Fireflies baseball
Southern road trips

There's just a new name to put it all together under. It's something that's been a long time coming and I am so glad to finally see it come to life.

Welcome to Magnolia & Main, hope y'all enjoy the new space as much as I do!

21 April 2016

2,420 Days

Exchange phone numbers = check
Talk a little bit via text & FB = check
Hang out with him on neutral ground in Columbia = check
Invite him to come to Clemson for a football game = check
... and then promptly go into full on stress about this boy you've just met a couple of weeks ago coming to visit you at Clemson = check
I had only known this boy for like two seconds before I invited him to come up to Clemson for the first football game. I was a nervous wreck about it and distinctly remember threatening a few friends to be extremely nice to this guy because I really liked him. Like really liked him and I wanted him to have a good impression of Clemson {plus my friends}.
I'm not even sure I slept much that Friday night in anticipation of him coming up the next morning for the football game.
Y'all, here's the part of the story that makes me surprised that he came up that day: he had gone out the night before to celebrate a friend's birthday and had gotten home pretty late. He overslept. By the time he woke up, he might have had two dozen missed calls from me.
... no shame in my game y'all, no shame. I just wanted to make sure he woke up and got to Clemson.
He did eventually wake up, see all of the missed calls, and not only did he call me back but still came up to Clemson that day. We went to my friends' tailgate {where there was much peer pressure to play quite a few tailgate games} and then wandered across campus over to my parents' tailgate. I remember kicking off my sandals, running around our tailgate barefoot, and being completely happy that this boy had come to see me.

{PS - please note that 1) Patrick is being completely neutral in the white polo/khaki shorts combination and 2) the other two girls in this picture, Abby & Lindsey are bridesmaids in our wedding... they've known him from almost day one!}

We went into the game and I made sure that I got that gamecock lovin' boy down at the very front of the student section. On the very first play of the game, Clemson's CJ Spiller ran the kickoff back for a touchdown and I went insane. You know. Screaming. Jumping up and down. Out of control.

I remember looking over at him and seeing this look on his face. This look of "holy cow, what have I gotten myself into".

That was 2,420 days ago.
In 99 days, I'm pretty sure that boy is going to have that same look of "holy cow, what have I gotten myself into" as he's standing at the front of the church, waiting for me to walk down the aisle. But by then, we'll have 2,519 days behind us as proof that he clearly knows what he's getting himself into ;)

20 April 2016

The Fireflies Experience

Three games over the course of five days. I don't know how actual baseball players do it with a game almost every single day. It's kind of ridiculous. I am officially worn out.
But it was worth it! I can now say that I was there the night that baseball came back to Columbia and I saw them win their first home game.
Game #1: Fireflies vs the Greenville Drive {4/14/16}
4-1, W

Opening night! That alone was enough to make this game exciting, but by the end of the night, we had ended up on the rooftop of the super swanky first base building {thanks to my friend Ashley & her husband}

It was Thirsty Thursday which meant there were some excellent drink deals that only got better as the night went on. By the 5th inning, all drinks were $2.50. Deal.

The night ended with a win & a lot of {super loud} fireworks.

Game #2: Fireflies vs the Greenville Drive {4/16/16}
5-3, L
We came into game #2 armed with useful tips & tricks from game #1. First of all, anticipate lines. For everything. Second, make sure you eat at some point during the game.

We watched the first three innings of this game in our seats before spending the next three wandering the concourse in search of food, drinks, and different views of the stadium. Our favorite place to sit was at the Homerun Bar back behind centerfield.

& we found this guy!

Game #3: Fireflies vs the Charleston River Dogs {4/18/16}
13-1, W
This game was a celebration game for us: my fiancé was finally free from tax season & we were out to celebrate with some friends. & celebrate we did.

Patrick finally bought his Fireflies hat & I wasn't entirely sure how I felt about us having matching hats. He was pleased.

Our seats for this game were in section 106 and were right behind home plate. We had a great view from here! I'm excited that we have tickets to two other games this season in this section. However, for the next midweek game? We're going to be getting the $5 tickets & sit out in the grass area.

Why? Because they have rocking Adirondack chairs and it's super close to the Homerun Bar. And because you can heckle the outfielders from out there. Poor #15 from the River Dogs was subjected to us during the Fireflies 8 run inning that never ended. He handled it well and turned around to wave a few times.

What a great {even if they were exhausting} few days of baseball! We're taking a little break from baseball but don't worry. We'll be back for sure. Check back on Friday for the top 5 reasons you need to get yourself to a Fireflies game this summer.

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18 April 2016

A Lot of Baseball & a Little Bit of Brunch

I love April 18.
Because tax season is finally over and I get my fiancé the accountant back!
Things will be a little quiet over here for the next few days as I recoup from our weekend that started early last week {on Thursday!} and is still continuing into tonight.
We've basedball'd it up quite a bit. We went to the Fireflies Opening Night last Thursday where we took in a baseball game, played on a rooftop, and got to catch up with my bridesmaid Ashley.

There was a date night at The Villa, another baseball game, a post-church Sunday brunch at DiPrato's {complete with sharp white cheddar pimento cheese & pita chips}, and a Sunday night dinner up at the lake with Patrick's parents.

I'll be back later this week with all things Fireflies baseball related, don't you worry! But until then, we'll be over here celebrating the official end of tax season. Happy April 18th, y'all!

14 April 2016

All About the Breweries

By popular request, I've compiled a list of my favorite breweries that I've been to visit and highly recommend. There's quite a few on my bucket list of breweries to visit but they're kind of spread out all over the place and we haven't made it there yet. Luckily, I've got a fiancé who loves the craft beer scene just as much as I do and who is always on board for a spontaneous trip to visit a new one.

Actually, truth be told, that's how we've ended up at a few of them. Got an extra hour of time to spare? Quick, find a brewery!

Anyway. Here's my five favorite {in no particular order}:

Columbia, SC

Not only is this one located just around the corner from where I work, it's got excellent beer. They are located a short walking distance from Williams Brice {if you wanted to tailgate before a USC game} and have an awesome outdoor area. There are plenty of picnic tables, cornhole boards, and open grassy areas to go around.

My favorite beers here are:
American Kolsh Story
Broad River Red

Patrick's favorites:
Double IPA

See more here & here.

North Charleston, SC

Holy City beers have been some of our favorite for awhile, but we've only recently been to visit their taproom. Don't be discouraged by the sketchy surroundings - it's worth a trip! Plus, the fries? Amazing.

My favorite:
Washout Wheat
{quite delicious in a can, even better on draft}

Patrick's favorite:
Overly Friendly IPA

See more here.

Asheville, NC

Oh, Wicked Weed. Patrick and I stumbled across this one on our first trip to Asheville and we still can't stop talking about it. They have an awesome atmosphere here, really good food, and even better beer. The only problem is that they always have something new on tap and I wind up getting a different beer every time I go here. So I can tell you my favorites, but there's no guarantee that they'll be there if you visit!

My favorites:
Weiss Not?
Lunatic Blonde

Patrick's favorite:
Freak of Nature

See more here & here.

Charlotte, NC

If you want to go to a biergarten, this is the place to go. It was one of the very first breweries that I had ever heard of in Charlotte and I'm pretty sure that it's one of the first ones that I ever visited. You need to check this place out on a warm, sunny day because the biergarten is outstanding.

My favorites:
Hornet's Nest {which is about to be available again starting in May!}
Southside Weiss

See more here {old taproom} and here {new taproom}

Charlotte, NC

|photo by Jessica Roberts|

Of course, I couldn't leave this brewery off of the list. Not only do they have excellent beer but it's where my fiancé and I took our engagement pictures last December. For that reason, it will always be one of our favorites. But now? Now I wish that I still lived in Charlotte because they've relocated Food Truck Friday to Sycamore. A Big Cheesy + Bacon from Papi Queso AND delicious beer from Sycamore? Yes. All the yes.

Sycamore is constantly changing up their beer lineup so I don't have our favorites for you. But you should go anyway because they're bound to have something on tap that you love. Even they admit that it's hard to keep track of what's on tap!

See more here & here.

Low Tide Brewing
Johns Island, SC

This one literally just made the list this weekend. It's a new brewery that's only been open for three weeks but y'all, I absolutely love it. They had lots of great beers on tap and the people who work there are so incredibly knowledgeable and friendly.

My favorites:
Sweet Caroline Kolsch
CharleSun Peel Lager

Patrick's favorites:
TBD! He hasn't been to this one yet :)

See more here.


Here are the honorable mention ones:
Hunter Gather Brewery in Columbia, SC {we go here more for the food than the beer but the beer is good, too!}
Sugar Creek Brewery in Charlotte, NC {part 1 & part 2}
Unknown Brewing in Charlotte, NC
NoDa Brewery in Charlotte, NC
Conquest Brewing in Columbia, SC
And of course, we have a bucket list of breweries that we want to visit:

Goose Island in Chicago, IL

Twisted Spur Brewing in Columbia, SC {coming SOON! like perhaps even this weekend}
New Belgium Brewing in Asheville, NC {coming May 2016}
Sierra Nevada Brewery in Asheville, NC
Westbrook Brewing in Charleston, SC
Brewery 85 in Greenville, SC
Swamp Rabbit Brewery in Travelers Rest, SC
Swamp Cabbage Brewing Company in Columbia, SC {because somehow we still haven't made it there yet}
Southern Sky Brewing in Kennesaw, GA
Foothills Brewery in Winston Salem, NC {side note: I've been here many times pre-beer drinking days and they have great food. Now I just need to go back and sample the beer!}

... and like a million others. Because you know that we would never turn down the option to go visit a brewery somewhere!

12 April 2016

Oh Hey, Low Tide Brewing!

I know you've heard this story before on this blog: was driving down the road, stumbled across a new brewery, and decided that an impromptu detour was necessary.

To be more specific, my friend Camlin and I saw this sign for Low Tide Brewing on our way into Charleston Saturday morning and nearly got whiplash from whipping our heads around to make sure we had seen this sign correctly. A brewery?! On Johns Island?! Within reasonable driving distance of Kiawah?!
It couldn't be. But it was.

I can't tell you how excited I was about this new discovery. On our way back to the island, we popped in for a quick visit to check them out.

The taproom was fairly empty when we got there which I assume was because they had just opened for the day and they had only been open for three weeks {but it was pretty busy by the time we left!} We didn't mind though because it meant we got some one on one time with the two guys working there who gave us all sorts of information about the beers and a couple of free samples to try before we decided on our drink orders.

I tried three: Sweet Caroline Kolsch, Charleston Beer Works Suicide Blonde, and the CharleSun Peel Lager.

& yes, I got the Sweet Caroline Kolsch twice in my flight. Why? Because it was that good.
I looooove me some River Rat Brewery American Kolsch Story but y'all, I think I've got a new favorite kolsch. This one was so light, so delicious, and such a perfect beach/summertime beer. I seriously debated getting a growler full of it before we left. It's a safe bet that I'll be swinging by here on Fridays before a long beach weekend to pick one up though.

CharleSun Peel Lager was also a winner in my books as well as the Suicide Blonde. The blonde beer took me a couple of sips to grow accustomed to it but it was pretty tasty.

Camlin opted for 12oz of the Sweet Caroline Kolsch in addition to the little samples we received of the British Pub Ale and the Coconut Pete's Chai Ale.

Their taproom was pretty nice! Big bar area, nice high top tables, and some picnic tables outside for the nicer days. I am a big fan of their lighting though: old drift wood + rope + bulbs = perfect lighting for a place called Low Tide Brewing.

Lots of logo love, too.

If you go, I highly suggest you getting the flight to sample their beer. It's only $7 and if you get two flights, you get to sample almost all of their beer {all but 1}.

I know that I'll absolutely be back to this brewery. We loved it! & I really love how close it is to Kiawah. There are many breweries in the Charleston area that we'd love to try out but when we're staying on Kiawah, it's quite the drive to them. Low Tide Brewing? Short drive, amazing beer. Win-win!

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