Solar Eclipse Road Trip – Day 1

We were lucky enough to be less than 8 hours from viewing a total solar eclipse. I managed to get a couple days off work and the big girls were able to take a day off school. Michael was unable to get a day off so we ended up making it a girls trip. I looked into our options and we decided to view the eclipse from Sweetwater, TN. The only issue was that I only got the day off on a last minute trade and finding a hotel in the vicinity was not going to happen. It was too far to drive the day of the eclipse so I had to find a place closer than where we are. I finally found a place outside of Chattanooga, TN and booked it online.

We packed our overnight bag the night before. We got up early to have a quick, healthy breakfast at home before hitting the road. The goal was to make it as far as possible before having to stop. The little girls did amazing and we didn’t have to stop until lunch time. We found a McDonald’s with a play center. The girls had a chance to get out of the car to play and eat for 45 minutes. After lunch, we stopped at a Walmart and picked up some snacks to get us through the rest of the trip to Chattanooga. I filled up the gas tank before getting back on the road.

One of our snacks for the road!

We made decent time and got to our hotel just before dinner time. We checked in, picked up our key, and found our room before heading to dinner. Remember me saying that hotels were in high demand and I took what I could find. This was not a nice place to stay. It was questionable. It was a non-smoking room but there were burns on the blankets and furniture. There was black hair in the bottom of the bathtub. It did seem safe enough and there were no bugs. Every trip can’t be fancy. I’m not complaining. I’m just stating the truth. Sometimes it’s enough to not have to sleep in the car.

 

 

We drove into downtown Chattanooga and ate at City Café Diner. This is our favorite diner and we were so excited to be able to eat here! This is the cutest little place with amazing food and great service! I would eat there again and again. We stop there every time we drive through Chattanooga or near enough that we can easily detour.

Ivy and I got gyros and fries. The little girls got mac and cheese. We have never had a bad meal here. The dessert really is the star of the show at this place. They have huge cases of cakes, cheesecakes, and other desserts at the front. They all looked amazing! It was hard to decide. We each picked something different.

So many choices! Their dessert menu is really something!

I had the cheesecake in the bottom right photo. It was truly delicious. Their desserts are huge and incredibly well priced. Isabella couldn’t finish her chocolate cake and decided to take it with her. We left the restaurant and went back to our hotel to sleep for the night.

 

Freddy’s Steakburgers

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We recently took the kids to dinner at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers in Amelia, Ohio. The food is made fresh to order. The steakburger patties are thin so they cook very fast. I went with the classic. The beef was well seasoned. The shoestring fries are thin and crispy! They were very good. However, the star of the show is the fry sauce. This creamy sauce is the perfect complement to the crispy fries. Bottomless drink refills and unlimited fry sauce are at a self-service area near the food pick-up window.

The place is perfect for a fun, family dinner. It’s not the healthiest stop but sometimes it’s alright to indulge a little. The kid’s meal is basically slightly smaller portions of the same food. The whole family enjoyed themselves. I cannot comment on the custard they serve for dessert. We were too full from the large meals to want dessert. It is an affordable dining option with meals coming in under $10 per person.

Izzy’s in Florence, KY

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I can’t help it!  I just love a good sandwich! I also adore the pickles at Izzy’s.  They bring this bowl of free pickle goodness to your table and everything is awesome from that moment on.  We devoured our pickle appetizer while waiting on our sandwiches. Izzy’s is known for their pickles, Reubens, and potato pancakes.

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On this particular day, the hubby ordered a Reuben and I got the corn beef and Swiss.  They also make these perfect potato pancakes.  They are perfectly fried heaven.  I could easily go to Izzy’s and only eat them.  You can order them separately.  This restaurant is extremely family friendly.  They do offer kid’s meals that are similar to the adult food but the potatoes are different.  Isabella got the corn beef sandwich.  I could order a potato pancake for Isabella for lunch instead.  They are big and she loved them so much she put a pretty good dent in mine and her Dad’s.

We visited the location on Mall road in Florence, KY. The parking situation at this particular location sucks. It is in the same building as a Starbucks and shares a parking lot with a small strip-mall. If you go here at midday, you may have to circle the lot to find a parking spot.  It is worth the time spent finding parking. Very affordable at under $10 per person.

Come hungry and Enjoy!

Antique Shopping and Louisville’s Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

Crazy Daisy Antiques

We went on a day trip to Louisville, Kentucky for a girl day.  We did a little antique shopping.  We started at Tickled Pink.  It is a cute little shop.  We enjoyed browsing all the little goodies tucked into rooms and the art hanging on the wall including the staircase.  We also visited The Crazy Daisy Antique Mall.  This place was pretty big.  It has different stalls to visit.  The items were extremely varied.  The kids enjoyed seeing the old toys and baby clothing.

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Please & Thank You

We decided that we must try the chocolate chip cookies at Please & Thank You while we were in town.  We had heard so many good things about this place that I wasn’t sure it could live up to the hype but I was wrong. The place definitely has a Hipster vibe. The staff was polite. The iced Thai coffee was amazing. Our oldest daughter, Ivy, really enjoyed their specialty tea assortment. She decided on the Ruby Slipper and loved it.

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So Many Goodies!

We came for cookies but once Isabella looked in the case she decided that she had to try the Bourbon Bar. It was quite delish! Everything looked and smelled amazing. We placed our order and waited for it to be made. It was Sunday afternoon and the place was very busy. We found seats in the back near the record shop area.

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They had a small table for the little kids with crayons & a shelf of old toys.

Ivy and I sat at the end of a large picnic table that was shared by many patrons. It was comfortable and friendly. The chocolate chip cookies were gooey and perfect. I understand why they are the best in Louisville.

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Amazing!!!

We had an amazing day trip!  I’m glad we took the short drive.  It’s always nice going out with the girls for a day.  It is so relaxing being away from everything for a day.  There is so much to do in Louisville and it is such a pretty city that I know that we’ll go back.

Donut Holes & Tower Tree

We lived in Indiana when Ivy was little. Our favorite bakery was Schmidt Bakery in Batesville, Indiana. We were on a road trip and were driving right by Batesville so we decided to take a little detour. We stopped for breakfast. We were so excited to eat our bags full of glazed donut holes! They have these awesome yeasty donuts and donut holes.

While we were enjoying our breakfast, Michael and I were talking about things that we remembered about the area. One of us mentioned that there is a courthouse nearby with a tree growing on top of it. Isabella was very excited by this idea. We decided that it was worth going a couple of minutes out of our way to check this out. The Tower Tree is a small tree growing on top of a tower at the Decatur county courthouse. It’s in Greensburg, IN which is right down the road from Batesville.

Do you see that little tree? Isn’t that cute? It’s been there for a long time. It’s a Mulberry tree. This little tree has even been on “Ripley’s Believe it or Not” and apparently it brings a lot of tourism to the area. The girls really got a kick out of this. It gave us a little break to stretch our legs and was worth getting off the highway.

After this, we got back on the road to finish our trip. These little stop-offs have resulted in us seeing some really neat things over the years. There are so many little things that I would not necessarily go on a trip just to see but as long as we are in the area we will take the time to stop to see them. Have you seen this tree? What is your favorite roadside attraction? I’d love to hear it. Drop me a comment below!