This post is sponsored by AVA Grace Vineyards!IMG_0200

So, I’ve always heard that I am super positive and happy.  Don’t get me wrong, I definitely have my moments of darkness, but I typically share those as well as the sunny parts because life is a balance, and it’s hard to juggle it all most days. As someone who lives on the sunnier side of life MOST of the time, I felt like I needed to share a necessary component of life that often gets overlooked: the importance of spontaneity in order to live a happy life! It’s something a lot of people forget about, probably because people typically go about their daily routines doing all the life things – like work, and the dishes, and the laundry (and also Netflix!) But a lot of times people find themselves struggling to be content and don’t understand why.

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Spontaneity gives me new perspective, refreshes my mind, and allows me to give others more grace  It adds spunk and flavor, it can shake things up and make you feel alive again. After I do something new or spontaneous it clears my mind and leaves me feeling fresh! Adding spontaneity always gets me out of a slump, and makes me feel happy- I crave it. I think it’s something that you should seek out in your life often! Here are some actionable things you can do to add spontaneity to your life.

(This means getting out of your comfort zone! It doesn’t have to be anything crazy, you can do something simple!)

  • Try the new restaurant you’ve been dying to try– Actually, call them right now! Make a reservation if you have to! It will give you something to look forward to! Matt and I ALWAYS try the new happening restaurant in our town; side note: we also always rate it as the meal is going on! Ambiance, service, food, and overall! It’s so fun and it just adds a little fun to our day and date! There is just something about trying something new that’s exciting! You get to see a place you’ve never seen and experience it all for the first time. It’s refreshing!Bonus points if you find somewhere that’s BYOB with outdoor seating. Bring your favorite AVA Grace wines for an extra special evening out.
  • Take a spur of the moment road trip- This is probably my favorite ! (I have a travel bug!) Nothing gets the juices flowing like a spur of the moment road trip. Matt and I do this all the time! We will decide the night before and make a day trip to Panama City Beach or 30A and it’s always exactly what our soul needs.Think of somewhere you can go to get out of your town that’s just  a short car ride away. I recommend a 1-3 hour drive at the most, and just go! I recommend grabbing a bottle of AVA Grace  Rosé or Chardonnay on the way out.It’s  perfect for the spur of the moment, moment. Look up places you want to try on the way,and navigate to a picnic spot along your route with a pretty overlook for sipping your wine when you reach your destination. Just go and let the wind blow you where you may! (Matts and I road trips usually involve the sunset and wine at some point)IMG_6351
  • Trying a new wine– Sometimes you don’t have the time off work to go on a trip, or the money to treat yourself to dinner. In these cases I recommend grabbing a new fun bottle of wine and I highly recommend AVA Grace! AVA Grace can be found in your local store and it has the cutest labels – perfect for spicing up an ordinary night. I love the Chardonnay has notes of white peach, apple, lemon and hints of oak and was inspired by the loveliness of the California Vineyards. Grabbing a bottle of wine can give you a little something to look forward to, and gives you an excuse to let your hair down and channel your inner fun!IMG_0108IMG_6198_Facetune_05-03-2019-02-12-06IMG_6220_Facetune_05-03-2019-23-09-17
  • Do a staycation- Staycations are such a good way to take a moment and breathe in a new space. There is no pressure of traveling and allowing time for that, just all the time for FUN! This is something Matt and I do often – we have our go-to spots (Paradise Inn/Margaritaville), and in my opinion, this is the best way to add spontaneity. When I’m traveling I like to cram everything in, so the staycation is just a time to relax and breathe. I like to think about everything and nothing, watch the waves roll in, watch the sunset, and drink Rosé! AVA Grace Rosé is the perfect wine for a staycation- with notes of apricots, honeysuckle and hints of wild roses, it’s really perfect for anything! IMG_6201_Facetune_05-03-2019-02-20-44IMG_6256_Facetune_05-03-2019-21-06-10
  • Look up an event in your town and go- I do this all the time, I am ALWAYS on the lookout for events going on around town, I usually find them on coffee shop bulletin boards or Google. I’m always looking for a new experience that is going to broaden my horizons, open my mind and refresh my soul! I’ve been to local art galleries, live music, Weiner dog races, wine tastings, indie movie premieres, . and I’m never disappointed. At the very least it gets me out of my comfort zone and is the perfect refresher.
  • Make plans with a friend you haven’t seen in awhile- Call your friend right now! You know, the one who’s energy you’ve been missing. See if she can meet you for a quick cup of coffee, a beer, or even hop on a quick phone call. Sometimes you are stuck in your daily routine,  and putting forth energy to call someone just doesn’t sound fun. I promise if you are feeling BLAH, making the effort to call or hang with someone you don’t usually see (but whom you love) can do WONDERS for your soul and add the spontaneity you NEED in your life!IMG_6207_Facetune_05-03-2019-02-31-30
  • Cook a meal you’ve never made before- This pretty much falls under the category of doing things you haven’t done before. Even something this simple as making a meal will be something you remember and learn from, which always breaks up the monotony in life. Don’t forget to grab some AVA Grace wine to enjoy with your meal!

I hope this post leaves you feeling inspired to get out of the ordinary and do something different!

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Thank you Vist Pensacola and Vacation Artfully for sponsoring this post!

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Pensacola became home for me when my dad and stepmom dropped me off to college, hello UWF, go Argos!!!! At this current point in my life, that was many moons ago; I haven’t left yet, partially because I love it!! The sense of community here cannot only be seen, but felt! Pensacola is special!!! We have CHARM, beauty, and tons of fun things to do!! What I love about this place is the powers at be are always actively looking to bring a new, cool, fun, thing here, and they aren’t scared to give it a try!

There so much history in Pensacola! If you just look around downtown you will find beautiful persevered old houses, a lot that offer guided tours funded by donation only! My boyfriend and I have accidentally stumbled upon a few actually, and it has always been something we have both enjoyed! Speaking of downtown! Pensacola downtown is an actual SPOT! We have an amazing bar/food scene! I love walking into some of the restaurants downtown and feeling like I’m actually in a big city! Palafox is such a BEAUTIFUL street filled with the cutest shops, the yummiest food, theaters, music Venus, food trucks, the coolest bars and breweries we have it all!! Since I LOVE food I’m going to start by taking you through a few of my FAVORITE SPOTS!! Here are a few must do restaurants! (I’m going to keep this short because I could honestly make this a blog post on its own, there are SSSOOO many!)

  • Wine Bar- FOR THE WIN! Always a good go to, you will get great service, cozy intimate atmosphere, great food and good wine!!!
  • Urban Swinery- This is a new restaurant (A global concept) I’ve only eaten here once but I was not disappointed at alllll its beautiful with an upscale coastal vibe, also the food was AMAZING! (The $5 lunch wine is the move, your welcome)
  • Taco Agave- Craft tacos! Pork belly, ahi, jackfruit, a taco for every mood! hahaha, Also the craft margaritas are WOOOWWW so good lol my mouth is wateringgg!!!
  • Union Public House- Talk about a big city feel! Walking in there and having the experience of that menu you would never know you were in a small town! THE OPENED FACE SMOKED BRISKET PATTY MELT ON HOMEMADE CORN BREAD!!! The watermelon salad, THE CRAFT COCKTAILSSSS!!! OMG I’m droolinggg!!!
  •  Carmens!!!!! Carmens is to die for, like most of the restaurants I’ve listed farm to table, but Carmens menu is thoughtful put together with fresh ingredients and love. The dressings and soups are made from scratch! (I CRAVE Carmens on the regular!!!)

OKAY OKAY I’m going to stop myself because I really could go on and on and on. The list of amazing restaurants downtown is really unbelievable, this is just scratching the surface of our artisanal cuisine!!!! As far as bars go, to say we have some standout spots in Pensacola, is an understatement, just listen!

  • The Elbow Room- This is a little off the beaten path, about 10 mins from Palafox, when you walk into this magical place, you feel transported to another time entirely. The whole establishment is lit by red lighting, there is also a real deal juke box that makes all the best noises. To top this gem off there is EVERY BOARD GAME YOU CAN EVER IMAGINE, along with the quirkiest memorabilia! Its very stranger things vibes, you really HAVE to check this place out, it is one of a kind! (They also have great food!!!)
  • The Bridge Bar- aka the best sunset spot in town. This place is a Pensacola GEM! Picture this: You are listening to acoustic guitar, all you can smell is the beach, the cool breeze of the wind is coming off the ocean, gently hitting your skin in just the right way. You have a cold drink in your hand, and you are watching the breath taking sunset, as the sun dips into the water. THAT is the bridge bar, and its magicallllll!!!!
  • Seville- I have said many of times, there really is nowhere like Seville in the world. So many beautiful rooms!! This place is one of a kind, AND ITS HUGE; it has a New Orleans vibe with cobble stone floors, mesmerizing old wood pieces from the bars to the stair cases. Its really something you have to see in person. There are about 9 different bars in seville! The Piano bar is my FAVORITE!! I do also love grabbing a cappuccino during the day time! if you wanted to break it down on the dance floor there is a huge room for that too, and ITS SO PRETTY! They also have a indoor outdoor court yard with super yummy craft beers and a beautiful fountain! They also have a karaoke bar, a pool bar, and a wine shop (WITH THE BEST PRICES!) You could spend all night in this beautifullll place!! Sometimes it feels crazy to be running amuck in such a beautiful historic building, but we are so lucky we get too!
  • O’Rileys Downtown- This place feels like home. Its a true Irish pub, you can chill on the couches and watch whatever sport is in season on all the many TV’s. The bar is a beautiful place, brick and a wrap around bar, it just a great spot to be with friends.
  • Old Hickory :The Whiskey Bar- I LOOOVVVE this place. I give be total Harry Potter Vibes! The decor is very well thought out, and the drink menu is very change and DELICIOUS! They hand make there syrups! This place seems to be doing something cool, like turning into a Christmas bar for half of December. It had a speak easy vibe, with an upscale feel.
  • Perfect Plain: Perfect Plain is literally everything you could want in a brewery

Again I could really go on foreverrrr about the bar scene in Pensacola, especially down Palafox! I haven’t even gotten to the events/things to do in Pensacola! Im just going to dive in and list them!

  • Wine and Food festival: this is one of my favorite events everrrr picture this, champagne and oysters in a beautiful cobble stone court yard, there is a fountain and greenery, every indoor counter space is filled with wine and food in one of the most beautiful rustic buildings you have ever seen. You can literally try over 100 wines, and then you get to buy them at cost in a room before you leave!IMG_3442_Facetune_07-11-2018-00-19-21
  • FooFooFest: FooFoo Fest is one of the things that makes Pensacola so so SPECIAL! We appreciate Art here of all kinds, and FooFooFest Celebrates Art of every kind, Culinary, Traditional, and Performing. The festival is 14 days long, there are events all over town. I got the opportunity with visit Pensacola and Vacation Artfully to attend some beautiful amazing events, it was SUCH A BLAST!!!! Let me just tell you about a few of my FAVORITE things I did!!
    • The Gulf Coast Arts Festival: This is one of my favorite things in Pensacola! Matt and I have attended for YEARS!! There are booths and booths set up all over from artist of all kinds from just about everywhere you can imagine! They have everything from sculptors, painters, knife makers, woodworks, jewelry makers, artist who work with wool, leather and some of the coolest things you have ever seen! We usually take a full day with beer in hand and weave in and out of all the booths talking about our favorite pieces, I’m smiling just thinking about it! I can’t wait till next year!
    • Women of Fire: This event is held at First City Art Center, ( I could do a post on FCAC alone, they are AWESOME!) The Women of Fire event was so empowering, Matt and I attended the ticketed reception. We got to eat with the artist while being serenade by acoustic guitar, and a beautiful voice! After we got to see the badassory of Women working with fire, drink beer and walk through the gallery. IMG_2398IMG_2369IMG_2384IMG_2396IMG_2323IMG_2316IMG_2379IMG_2359IMG_2408IMG_2402IMG_2399
    • Rumors-Fleetwood Mac Cover band: Some of my Pensacola Blogger friends and I got to attend this performance, it was so cool because not only are the band/songs extraordinary, but they played videos and commentary all throughout the performance, making you feel like you knew them and knew all the feelings behind the songs.IMG_3373.jpgIMG_3387IMG_3380IMG_3381IMG_3377
    • The Happy Art Tour: This is going to make you smile and play like a little kid!! Its a guided art tour that involves all of your senses. Every room is SOO FREAKING cool and very thought out to make you super HAPPY I could not wipe the smile off my face!!! (this is still going on I HIGHLY recommend going!!!)IMG_3445_Facetune_07-11-2018-00-26-32IMG_3447_Facetune_07-11-2018-00-31-40IMG_3448_Facetune_07-11-2018-00-32-56IMG_3450_Facetune_07-11-2018-00-34-33IMG_3449_Facetune_07-11-2018-00-33-44IMG_3454_Facetune_07-11-2018-01-18-15IMG_3451_Facetune_07-11-2018-00-35-18
    • CUBED: This event was so creative, and super fun! There were GIANT white cubes with artistic videos playing. It reminded me of a kid friendly music festival because there was also a large stage!! We walked through watching the cubes listening to music, it was such a fun way to spend an evening!!IMG_3548_Facetune_18-12-2018-15-36-49IMG_3550_Facetune_18-12-2018-15-31-31
    • See The Music Hear The Dance: This was one of my FAVORITE FooFooFest events!! It was at the GORGEOUS Pensacola Little Theater. Berkley Music Professor composed a beautiful orchestra piece highlighting the harp, Performed by Pensacola Symphony while The Pensacola Ballet Danced effortlessly throughout the piece. My favorite Part was that the Composer, the Dance choreographer, and the conductor all got on stage before the performance and talked through the performance on the whys and hows, it was such a memorable special experience!! (Dance Photos by: The Southern Creative) 510IMG_3551_Facetune_18-12-2018-15-29-40
    • Dean Dillion Song Writer Performance: I LOVVVEDD this!!! In Vinyl they had the legendary sing song writer Dean Dillon for an intimate evening of stories and music. Dean took the stage and walked us through his fascinating life story and performed SO MANY songs he wrote that it would blow your mind! Everything from Tennessee Whiskey, She Let Herself Go, I aint here for a good time, it would floor you to know the amount of hits he wrote. He had a story for each song as well, I laughed, cried, and left with my heart all swelled up! Dean Dillon was so effortlessly cool, I feel so lucky I got to listen to him perform and speak, he’s a true song writer.IMG_2708IMG_2710IMG_3554_Facetune_13-11-2018-14-27-49
    • Market Basket: This is the event to get you all in your holiday feels! TONS of booths set up market style with unique gifts and little holiday inspired eats to sample! I appreciate how there was also a courtyard to chill in and drink a beer!IMG_3560_Facetune_18-12-2018-15-27-08IMG_3558_Facetune_13-11-2018-14-22-32
    • GreenEgg Fest: This event was SO SO much fun!! It takes place in the beautiful Blue Wahoos Stadium, people come from all over to put there best food forward. You get to walk about the stadium sampling the YUMMIEST concoctions all made on GreenEgg grills! It was so much fun in such a perfect spot! I left full, happy, and a little bit nappy!! IMG_3561_Facetune_13-11-2018-14-25-46IMG_3562_Facetune_18-12-2018-15-25-36

These are just the events that I got the chance to attend THERE ARE SO MANY!!! Some even overlap in times! There is something for everyone at FooFoo Fest! I feel so fortunate to live in a city that encourages and welcomes all kind of art and growth. I can’t wait till next year!! FooFoo Fest always starts the first week in November, it would be the PERFECT time to Vacation Artfully in Pensacola!!

  • Blue Wahoo’s Baseball Game: Attending a Game at the wahoos stadium is such a treat because its on the water!! Its so relaxing and fun! Its great for a date night or for the fam!
  • Ice Flyers Hockey game: I had never attended a hockey game until I moved to Pensacola and boy was I missing out! Its fast paced beer drinking crowd cheering kinda fun! Fights are encouraged in hockey, image my shock at the first game I attended I sat wide eyed as the crowd applauded the players going at each other hahaha! Its all in good fun though! At least I think so lol
  • Attend a Show at Vinyl: Vinyl is such a cool venue because not only is it ideal for a musical act but once its done, you can venture out and hit the bars on Palafox!!

Penscola is such a unique town with so much to offer, we have culture here, and appreciate other culture as well. It’s been such an blessing to live in this environment where fun and good times are encouraged and welcomed! Pensacola is definitely a place where you can Vacation ARTFULLY!IMG_3443_Facetune_07-11-2018-00-21-21

Goodbye I love you let me know if you come out here!!!!!!

 

IMG_1300_Facetune_13-08-2018-17-17-51I’m writing this to you now on the other side of darkness, I was a lonely sad adult for a few years. I know this isn’t the case for everyone, but for me, growing up I had a TON of friends, best friends, close friends, surface friends, and everything in between I was really lucky in that department. Currently I have a good amount of healthy deep, and in close proximity, friendships. As someone who associates part of their identity as having a lot of friends, the times I didn’t were humbling, heartbreaking, and not something I would wish on anyone; to feel that kind of lonely.

Where do you even meet people anymore?! Work maybe? What if the median age at your job is 50+ or mostly 18-20 year olds! You are now in the middle of that. Are you supposed to go out by yourself? Or lets say you met someone in passing, how are you supposed to go about asking them to hangout in a non creepy I want to be your friend kind of way, and they probably have there own friends they reserve that time for. How are you supposed to find people to go do things with in places where you didn’t grow up, or lets say your interest have changed or your friends have slowly moved away (this happened to me staying in my college town after college) lets say you did get the number of a new potential friend, there is an extremely HIGH possibility of a cancellation! Your tired, they are tired someone gives the other an out, you take it. Plans cancelled and you guys reschedule only to not follow through with the next date. It happens ALL THE TIME over and over.

It used to be so easy in elementary, middle, high school, it got a little more difficult in college, but still you were forced to be part of this mass of people who you saw everyday wether you liked it or not. If they did a tiny little something that bothered you, you weren’t able to screen there phone calls, and write them off, in the way you can as an adult. If you met in your adult life, you don’t really have anything invested, no guilt of them being a part of your formative years, no immense amount of time spent in the relationship. So its sort of easy if a new friend does or says the most insignificant comment you didn’t like, or if you had a little off experience to no not confront them, but just pass on the friendship. I get it you have limited time and energy, your stretched thin, your feet hurt, you’ve been working all day, your pretty sure the amount of dry shampoo in your hair is putting a hole in the ozone layer and honestly it took everything in you to spend your little bit of free time not watching Netflix on the couch.

It seems pretty near impossible, and if you are looking at it through that lens it is. Getting to know someone takes effort, and time, you have to be intentional. If you aren’t its just not going to work. With that being said there have been many of times I have been intentional and followed through to no avail, what you have to realize is thats okay. Just don’t stop trying because you were probably once that same girl who couldn’t find it in herself to put in the effort either. It takes effort and follow through but once you go, you are so glad you did! It is worth it to pull yourself together and meet for coffee, it is worth it to make your tired, feet hurting, got laundry to do, just got off work, self go have a beer. Friendships and human connections are good for your soul and essential for your well being.IMG_1180_Facetune_08-08-2018-23-30-37IMG_1093_Facetune_01-08-2018-02-01-36

You need someone to vent too about your significant other, someone to brunch with, someone to talk about the dumb conspiracy theory you just saw on twitter. I want that for you. I hope this can put friendship into perspective for you. How necessary and complicated it can be. I could literally go on FOREVER about this subject friendship is something I’m passionate about, I’m SURE this wont be my last post on the subject! If you are having trouble in the friend depart please don’t get discouraged, it will take effort and energy, and time, but that connection is priceless.

I love you!

TorriSunshine!imageimage 2

So the title of this blog would be “Summer 2018 trends” but seeing as it is almost September I did not think that would be appropriate lollll whoops! It feels good to be back writing this, I still feel a little unsure of myself, but hopefully by the end of this post I won’t feel that, at least I’m hoping! These are trends you can still wear for a few months, so don’t let my use of the word summer scare you. I have been obsessively wearing these things lately so I NEED to share!

Short Brimmed Hats: The one I have been living in is from believe it or not American Eagle! You wouldn’t think of them when you think hats but I get soooo many compliments when I wear it!!! Also this hat is one sale right now for $18 dollars! Thats crazy cheap for a good hat! click HERE for the hat! What I love about hats is you throw it on and boom looks like you put in tons of effort and thought into your outfit lol! They also just pull things together!

(Also how cute are these Sunnies my BFF Samantha ordered me for my Birthday?!)

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Rompers: Rompers are seriously the coziest, most comfortable life hack of an article of clothing!! The one I’ve been living in the summer is from American Eagle… (Since I am now the store 129’s merchandising manager) That employe discount comes through hard!!! lolllll When I saw this romper come in I was interested but not sold, and then I tried it on!!!!!! ITS SO CUTE!!! Perfect for hot weather! Also through a jean jacket on and boom you’re ready for night time! hahaha I am loving the word boom right now apparently.. that is so weird lolllll Checkout!

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Platform Sandals: I have received more compliments on these than pretty much anything else I have bought recently! They are from target, and they are the cutest most comfy shoes I have ever bought. I was surprised how comfortable they are. Steve Madden makes some that look exactly like this for like $70! But these Target winners are only like $30 bucks!!!!!!! You need these! Go get them! They make them in black and red also! Click HERE for the shoes!

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Kimonos: Kimonos are like the flannels of summer time! You can throw them on over anything and it adds that pop to whatever you’re wearing! I have two that I am currently obsessed with!!! they are the most comfy light, and airy things everrrr! The white/grey is from aerie(click HERE) The other was gifted to me from my BFF Tori but she got it from Urban a long time ago!IMG_1367_Facetune_16-08-2018-12-27-21IMG_1368_Facetune_16-08-2018-12-19-41IMG_1389IMG_1365_Facetune_16-08-2018-12-17-50IMG_1369_Facetune_16-08-2018-12-20-44IMG_0880_Facetune_18-07-2018-01-43-47IMG_0881_Facetune_18-07-2018-01-47-11

Okay thats all I have for now! I’ll be back with my current fav clothes soon because I LOVE clothes and shoes and sunglass and accessorizes!!!! Comment below what your favorite out of all these are?!

I love you!!!!

Love,

TorriSunshine