Orlando Recap

Happy Tuesday readers!

Did y'all have a good weekend?

Mine was by far one of the most relaxing I've had in a long time and was just what I've been needing.

At one point during the weekend I went through pictures on my computer and realized I had never recapped my Orlando trip on the blog.  The beginning of August and dog days of summer seem so long ago now, but it is fun to reminisce.

As many of y'all know, 2014 has been a particularly tough year for me. Now that we are reaching the end of the year, things seem to be looking up.  August was a tough month, though, and I couldn't be more thankful for a friend like Angela.  I was having a particularly hard time and Bryce was leaving for a beach trip. I called Angela on a Friday, needing to escape, and we scheduled a trip for that Monday...just three days later!  It was a whirlwind of a vacay and Angela's kindness meant more to me than she realized.

My flight got in Monday night and our first stop was 407 Cafe. I had seriously been craving their crepes since my last visit and they did not disappoint!

Our first adventure during my trip was to Wekiwa Springs Park.  The park has natural springs for swimming and lounging, as well as places to kayak and canoe.

The water was so clear...simply gorgeous!

We packed magazines and enjoyed laying out and briefly dipping into the frigid water!

After that, we headed home, made some lunch and prepared for a visit to Winter Park. Winter Park is a community in Orlando with lots of cute shops, gourmet restaurants, and beautiful homes!  We started off with shopping along Park Avenue.  My favorite shops were Siegel'sViolet Clover, and of course, the Lilly store!

I swooned over the furniture in Lilly, 
even more than I did the clothes--how fab are those chairs!?

Lilly Loves Selfies

Shopping worked up an appetite, so we stopped at The Wine Room for a snack and beverages.  This place was so cool, y'all!  When you entered, you could prepay on a card that allowed you to sample wines all around the store.  You would swipe your card and then fill your glass according to how much you wanted (a taste, a small glass, or large glass).  The selection was impeccable and they also had a menu with lots of great small plate options. 

After walking around in the heat, 
the Francois Montand Ice Edition sparkling wine really hit the spot! 
We also munched on a pear and brie flatbread to tide us over 
until dinner with Angela's beau!

Our next stop was Hillstone for dinner. We chose to eat outside.  Angela and I both agreed that the menu was a bit limited and also pricey, but that the atmosphere made it worthwhile--this spot is all about the view, as you will see below:

The sunset over the water could not have been more beautiful!

The next day was my last day and we went out with a bang shopping at the Vineland Premium Outlets. You may remember from my first Orlando trip (post here), that Orlando has a Tory Burch outlet! I had restrained myself when we were in Winter Park the night before, because I knew I would want to splurge on some Tory!

I ended up buying a tan Reva Clutch, Leopard Revas (similar here), 
and an orange Simone Cardigan...all at outlet prices, no less!

I also had great luck at the J. Crew & Banana Republic outlets!

After outlet shopping, we had planned on going back into Winter Park for a boat tour, but an afternoon rainstorm changed our plans. We saw a movie instead and then Angela gave me her own tour of some of the fabulous Winter Park homes. Driving around and looking at houses is a favorite hobby of both of ours!

The picture doesn't do it justice, but this was my favorite house!

And, oooooh my, the Spanish moss!  
This scene was even more gorgeous because of the raindrops dancing on the lake!

Finally, we ended, our trip with dinner at Winter Park Fish Co. My one food request for the trip was to have some good seafood!

I was impressed to see that oysters from the James River in Virginia made the menu!

The seafood didn't disappoint, but these parmesan Old Bay mashed potatoes were actually my favorite part of the meal! I plan to try and recreate them at some point and will share the recipe if mine turn out to be as good!

With full bellies we headed home for one last night of girl talk before my early flight home in the morning.

There's nothing quite like best girlfriends, huh?

Finally, as a side note, I'm looking for suggestions.  We are going to be back in Florida next month for a wedding.  We will be staying in the Palm Beach/Jupiter area and are looking for suggestions of places to eat and things to do.  We will have both the rehearsal dinner and wedding, however, will need dinner one additional night and also ideas for brunch/lunch and fun activities.  Any and all recommendations are greatly appreciated!

Have a great day!