Why You Should Visit Orange Beach, AL

Summer is the best time to take a vacation and relax from all of the stresses caused by every day life. A beach is the perfect place to unwind and forget most of your responsibilities. I recently took a trip to Orange Beach in southern Alabama and  now feel compelled to inform you on why it is where you should spend your next vacation! This wasn’t my first time in OBA (an acronym most people use for Orange Beach). In fact, I’ll go about three times this summer, so I want to share what keeps my family and I coming back!

The Beach

Okay, this is obvious, but the beaches in lower Alabama are absolutely beautiful. The sand is soft, and crab hunting is perfect at night! Orange Beach also has a new campaign, “Leave Only Footprints.” They take pride in keeping their beaches clean, which is something I support.


The Family-Friendly Vibe

Some beaches along the Gulf can get pretty rowdy during the summer months, but Orange Beach is a family oriented community. There are countless mini golf, go cart tracks, and arcades! A massive theme park is being built about 15 minutes away and should be finished by the end of this summer. You’ll get the beach and a fun park in one awesome vacation!

The Food

I’ve been to some amazing restaurants in Orange Beach. If you’re looking for a steak, the best one I’ve ever eaten is the Butterboy at the Shipp’s Harbour Grill! You must go to Lulu’s once, especially if you have kids, and Doc’s is a local favorite! There is something for everyone!

 

Butterboy at Shipp’s Harbour Grill

The Shopping

Shopping is a great way to relax, and Orange Beach offers many options1The Wharf in Orange Beach has many boutique shops to choose from with brands ranging from Salt Life to Lauren James. Even better, there is a Tanger Outlet mall in Foley, AL, 20 minutes from OBA! Tanger is a huge outdoor mall with stores from TJ Maxx to Michael Kors. You’ll definitely get a great shopping experience!

I hope I have helped you choose your next vacation destination. Orange Beach definitely won’t disappoint.

Let me know where you will be vacationing this summer in the comments.

Stay positive.

Beach Bag Essentials

Summer is here, and if you’re like me, the beach is the best place to go. I always love to see what people put in their beach bag, so I thought I’d share what I put in mine! My iPhone and Apple Watch are a given, but this list consists of some out-of-the box recommendations.

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Sunglasses

Not very unique, I know, but they are essential enough to be mentioned! I always take a cute but inexpensive pair to the beach in case they get damaged or lost. I’m obsessed with these from Francesca’s!

Ziploc Bags

My best beach secret! I always put my phone in a Ziploc baggy to protect it from sand/water. The touch screen works through the bag; you don’t even have to take it out!

Pocket Charger

I always take my portable charger for my phone. I never have to worry about not being able to reach someone or playing music. Let’s be honest; the worst thing at the beach is no music! Here’s the one I have on Amazon.

Baseball Hat

My face burns so easily, so I always use a baseball hat for extra coverage! My go to hat this summer is pale pink with a pineapple on the front from Zumiez!

Monogrammed Cup/Beach Cup Holder

I love a cup that will keep my drinks cold all day long, and the one my sister got me is perfect! Avoid a sandy drink and put it in a cup holder that fits right in the sand is the best way to stay hydrated on the beach!

The cup was a gift, but here’s a similar one on Amazon! I love these awesome cup holders!

A Good Read

I always try to read a good book on the beach! This time, I’m reading Grace, Not Perfection: Embracing Simplicity, Celebrating Joy by Emily Ley. It’s a great reminder to unwind and enjoy myself more often than I do.

I hope I’ve given you some interesting ideas! Comment down below and tell me what’s in your bag as well as what beach is your favorite!

Stay positive.

 

Adopt, Don’t Shop

Dallas and I adopted our first fur baby!

I have been wanting to adopt a dog for YEARS. Why not do it right before I leave for college?! I knew having a dog in my new apartment would help me adjust to my new home.

I knew I wanted to adopt. I wanted a small dog that was housetrained and good with kids. I also knew that by adopting, I was saving a life. Here’s a few things I’ve realized since adopting Maddux, and why adoption is so important.

Our first time meeting Maddux

Adoption Is Cheaper

Puppies can cost hundreds of dollars, not to mention the vet costs for shots and getting your pet fixed. Most adoption agencies have already gotten that technical stuff covered, and my rescue actually microchips each animal. Now, if Maddux were to get lost, I could track him down much easier. Adoption prices obviously vary, but I paid Russell Rescue, the agency I went through, $150 for Maddux. He is a small Yorkie and is loved sooooo much.

Puppies=Overrated

Of course, all puppies are adorable, but adult dogs need some love, too! Maddux is approximately six years old, house trained, and already knows tricks. I don’t have to worry about him chewing anything up; he’s got a good understanding of when to play and when to chill out. He’s not too hyper, making him the best cuddle buddy. Adult dogs catch on to new environments better, so you don’t have to struggle with extensive training!

Adoption Saves Lives

Each year, approximately 670,000 dogs are euthanized in shelters across America. Adopting an innocent animal saves its life. Maddux has a home. He is fed and loved; most importantly, he won’t ever have to worry about being put down because no one cared enough to adopt him. You may have many friends, but your dog only has one. To him, you have changed his life-and you get the satisfaction of doing a good deed for a great pup.

If you’re considering getting a pet, I highly recommend adoption. It’s such a satisfying feeling knowing you have saved a life. Help a sweet animal live and give him or her a forever home.

Let me know if you’ve adopted a pet! Or feel free to ask me about the adoption process!

Stay positive.

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My AllState Choral Experience 

This past Fall, I auditioned for the Tennessee Mid-State Choir and was fortunate enough to be chosen to be a member of the Tennessee AllState Choir. I’ve decided to document my experience on this blog!

April 5- Day 1
My chorus teacher, Mrs. Dumser, another boy from my school, Isaiah and myself left school around one o’clock to travel to Nashville, TN. AllState was held at the amazing Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center this year, and I couldn’t be more excited. I’ve come to this hotel many times in my life-it has the prettiest light display at Christmas- but I had never really gotten the chance to spend a few days as a guest.

Rehearsal was from 7pm-9pm that night, so our group went to dinner at the Aquarium restaurant in the Opry Mills Mall. I got a lobster tower which was pretty much a huge salad. It was delicious, but we had to race to rehearsal to avoid being late.

One thing I did not enjoy about AllState was that they were very strict on time. Rehearsal would start at 7pm, but we would have to be in our seats ready for role call at 6:50pm. The Opryland Hotel is massive, and it would take about ten minutes for me to walk from my room to the meeting room. I was on time that night, but other girls weren’t. They were reprimanded and told that if they were late again they would be dismissed.

Rehearsal went by very fast that first night.

April 6- Day 2
I woke up around 6am to go to the gym, which was very tiny. After my unsuccessful workout, I didn’t want to have a large sit down breakfast, so I grabbed a fruit plate at the coffee shop in the hotel. I was at rehearsal by 8:50am and out by 12pm. A two hour lunch break may seem long enough, but with the food lines being miles long, I had barely finished eating before I had to make the long trek back to rehearsal.

That night, I went back to my room and went straight to sleep, exhausted.

April 7- Day 3
Rehearsal was moved up, so I had to be ready for roll call at 8:20am. I was so tired. My director missed the first night of rehearsal, so she was being very hard on us trying to make our concert the best it could be. Our concert had lots of choreography, and the music was very challenging.

Recap
AllState was a great experience that I recommend to everyone. I learned so much from my director and my peers as well. I wish I could experience it again.