Weekend Getaway In Review: Orange Beach, AL

Weekend Getaway In Review: Orange Beach, AL

"I can't believe I'm saying this about a seafood restaurant, but their green beans were great!"
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Every college student knows the importance of a weekend getaway, especially when stress levels are beginning to skyrocket. With finals week just around the corner and summer craziness about to commence, my best friend and I decided to make an overnight trip to Orange Beach! Above is a little video I made to remember our fun little excursion! It really highlights all the most memorable parts of our trip.

Orange Beach is about 3 1/2 hours from Troy, but the driving isn't terrible when you have clear roads and your bestie singing Billie Eilish next to you. There's nothing quite like the feeling of driving over Perdido Pass Bridge and seeing the shining blue-green salt water of the Gulf.

Maddie found us the cutest little Airbnb situated right on Perdido Beach Blvd: a cozy guestroom with private beach access! It was easy to find and the comfort was greatly appreciated after the drive.

We decided to take a chance on Shrimp Basket for dinner since it was pretty late when we got there and we didn't feel like braving a high-end restaurant. BEST. DECISION. EVER. The laid-back, outdoor atmosphere was so enjoyable, the service was great, and the food was to die for! Maddie got her Pina Colada fix, and I was fully prepared to marry their hushpuppies.

After dinner, we hit the beach for a late-night walk to find some crabs. Unfortunately, no crabs were found. But, we did collect some pretty neat shells and got to run around in the sand like the crazy kids we are.

It was late, we were full, and sufficiently tired so we conked out pretty early. We woke up feeling refreshed and ready to go the next morning! For breakfast, we had chocolate chip muffins (courtesy of Maddie) coffee. Well, Maddie had coffee. I can't have caffeine so I happily sipped my chocolate milk. (Not as aesthetically pleasing, but just as yummy.)

Around 9:30, we headed for the beach, which was clean, calm and easy to get to! What more could you ask for? The weather was perfect, at a high of 75 and barely a cloud in the sky. There were lots of people out, but they were all personable, respectful, and fun to be around! The water was a little nippy, with lots of wildlife! We saw minnows, jellyfish, stingrays, dolphins, and I even got up close and personal with a crab that took a chunk out of my toe! Maddie really enjoyed feeding the seagulls (or as she calls them, sea rats) parts of her Lunchable. We brought drinks in Maddie's vintage cooler that her grandfather took to Vietnam, which made us look way more hip than we actually are.

After hours of yoga in the sand and splashing around with the sea animals, we grabbed a bite to eat at Live Bait. It's the perfect lunch location if you still have sand in your hair and smell like sunscreen. I can't believe I'm saying this about a seafood restaurant, but their green beans were great!

Driving out of Orange Beach was much harder than driving in because of all the crazies going to the beach to celebrate the end of finals week. We were grateful we left when we did!

All in all, this weekend excursion couldn't have been better. Good friends, good food, good fun! Trips like this remind me that life is about so much more than my daily ins and outs. It's about friendship and laughter and teamwork and the little things that take your breath away. I am learning to seek these moments out and cherish them when they come.

Cover Image Credit: Ella Pitman

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To The Girl Who Hasn't Been Herself Lately

Your spark return, and you will shine like you were meant to.
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Life gets tough. Life gets too much to handle sometimes, and those times make you stronger. However, right now, it seems like you have lost yourself.

It’s difficult when you catch yourself not being you. When you do something or act a certain way and just wonder, “what did I do to deserve this? Why is this happening? When will it get better?” The way you’re feeling is not so much that you’re unhappy, you just feel weird.

Your day will come. I promise you. This is just a phase.

The day you realize how much you have grown from this point in time will be your reward. It is so hard to see now, and I feel your pain.

Your light will return to you. Your pure bliss moments, they are seeking you. Your laughter where your tummy aches is in your reach.

Our moods change far too often for us as humans to understand why, but the encounters you make every day have this effect on us.

You must remember the pure happiness you experienced before your first heartbreak, before the first friend became someone you thought they weren’t, before you lost your innocence. That was a time of true joy as you had not a care in the world for the things that would harm you. Better yet, you didn’t have the option to experience them because you were just a child.

The world can be an ugly place, and your attitude towards life can change every day. One thing is for certain: you did not lose who you are internally. We all put on a face for the world. For the people who we try to impress. For the life we want to live. For the things we want to achieve.

Your definitive personality is still in the works. Believe it or not, it always will be. Times like this change us for the better even though we can’t see it.

Your happiness will return. You will be a better, stronger version of you. In fact, you will be the best version of you yet.

Once this phase is over, you will be okay. This I promise you.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Sutton

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8 Reasons Maryland Deserves a Visit, Hon

Maryland is a small state, but it has a big personality.

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Maryland has so much to do, from the beaches on the East coast to the mountains on the western border. These are just 8 of many reasons our state is worth a visit!

1. It is the best place to eat Maryland Crabs.

I hope you like Old Bay!

2. Ocean City, MD has so much to do!

You can lay on the beach, go swimming, play a game of mini golf, walk on the boardwalk, play carnival games, ride carnival rides, go to clubs (if you are of age), and have the best french fries of your life ('sup Thrashers) all in one place!

3. You can visit Assateague Island off of the coast of Maryland and Virginia.

There are wild horses on an island off of the coast of Maryland and Virginia, 'nough said!

4. Baltimore's Inner Harbor is full of good eats and fun activities.

You can simply walk around the Inner Harbor, ride the paddle boats, tour a submarine, go to the aquarium, or ride the Spirit of Baltimore all in the same general vicinity.

5. You can visit the National Harbor in Prince George's County.

There is so many things to do here. You can ride the huge ferris wheel with enclosed cars, ride a mechanical bull at the Cadillac Ranch, visit the MGM Grand Casino and the big Gaylord Hotel.

6. Sugar Loaf Mountain is a great place to go hiking.

7. Great Falls is also a great location to visit!

You can visit Great Falls on either the Maryland or Virginia side. It's like a mini Niagara Falls.

8. You can root for the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards.

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