Spend the Day in @TheHeartofNC with these Fall/Winter Things To Do in #AsheboroNC #RandolphCounty ft. @NCZoo @SeagrovePotters @MillstoneCreek

On November 19, 2022, I joined others on a Day Trip Media Tour to Asheboro/Randolph County which lies in The Heart of North Carolina. It was a pleasure to learn more as about the destination and to have the opportunity to share the experience with you!

Visit the Heart of North Carolina ❤️ and discover more to LOVE in NC

North Carolina Zoo Tour

The morning started with a guided, two-hour tour at the North Carolina Zoo, which is the world’s largest natural habitat zoo, devoted to saving species and assisting with global efforts. Debbie Foster Fuchs of the North Carolina Zoo PR team was our host/guide providing us with information about NC Zoo which included a behind-the-scenes look. It was great to see how the animals connect with nature and the many ways this zoo is devoted to animal conservation. No wonder the North Carolina Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums. It truly is a unique family-friendly experience that we enjoy coming to. To learn more about the NC Zoo, check out my last blog post (here) about our family visit and plan your next adventure at NCZoo.org!

LUNCH-Downtown Asheboro

With Downtown Asheboro being just five minutes from the zoo, we headed there to check out their selections for lunch. Although there were many nice options all in close proximity, we chose Taco Loco (located at 138 Sunset Ave) because of the recommendation of it’s “fresh, lively interior with fresh-Mex favorites”. My family enjoyed the authentic cuisine and fast/friendly service of the restaurant as well as the charming atmosphere that Downtown Asheboro has to offer.

After lunch, it was time to head to the Handmade Pottery Capital of the USA aka Seagrove, NC. The 15th Annual Celebration of Seagrove Potters Fall Festival show was happening and we took advantage of the opportunity to meet potters, see live demos and do some shopping! The sales event took place at the Thompson Arts and Event Hall at Historic Luck’s Cannery located on NC Pottery Highway. If you would like to get some exclusively Seagrove made pottery, here is a ➡️ media guide link for exploring potter studios, annual events and to do tips for discovering Seagrove, America’s largest community of working potters, any time of the year!

Visit Seagrove NC

SobeSavvy Tip: Please note that almost every day can be a studio tour in Seagrove. You don’t have to wait for an event like the Celebration of Seagrove Potters to stop and visit potters in their working spaces. Some of the potters take January off, so that’s not the BEST time to come, but if you do come in January, the Visitor Center team can guide you to someone who is open….or you can call for appointments. Wed-Sat are the best “potter-hopping” days of the week. Visit DiscoverSeagrove.com for more info!

Millstone Creek Orchards

On the way home to Raleigh,NC from Seagrove, we made a stop along the way at Millstone Creek Orchards. Located in Ramseur, NC , this u-pick family farm offers many varieties of in season produce as well as delicious bakery/ Cannery items for purchase at the Apple Barn Country Store. I highly recommend going for the hot cider and the made fresh to order Apple Cider Donuts! It was the perfect sweet ending to our visit to The Heart of North Carolina.

SobeSavvy Tip: Millstone Orchards Creek has some upcoming holiday events and and activities that you don’t want to miss. Visit https://www.millstonecreekorchards.com/christmas-at-mco for details!

Make plans to visit The Orchard this Christmas!

Whether you are an outdoor enthusiast, a foodie, enjoy pottery or just some good ole family fun, visiting the Heart of North Carolina has something for everyone! Check out their event calendar here: https://www.heartofnorthcarolina.com/calendar/

Thanks for having SobeSavvy.com Visit the Heart of North Carolina ❤️

Diana Krall Thrills All @DPAC | Concert Review

Grammy and Juno award winning jazz star Diana Krall performed at the DPAC last night during her North American Tour. Jazz lovers around the world have been enthralled with her unique delivery of jazz standards and original songs since the late 90’s.

Due to COVID, this is her first tour in almost 3 years. She performed to an almost sold out crowd as a quartet. Many singers these days need all sorts of bells and whistles so her stripped down set reinforced the fact that she is a jazz singer of the highest caliber. Her catalog of songs is so deep there was no way she could sing all of her hits. What she chose was more than satisfying. See Setlist here Diana Krall Average Setlists of year: 2022 | setlist.fm

She mentioned more than once how ecstatic she was to be back on stage and able to perform in front of audiences again. Every band member got a chance to highlight their instrument command to roaring audience approval!

TOUR INFORMATION

Diana Krall is more than a smoky voice and accomplished pianist. She is a force, a vibe and a mood. Below are the next couple of tour dates before she picks it up again on a European leg next spring.

10/16 TANGER CENTER GREENSBORO, NC

10/17 PEACE CENTER Greenvile, SC

As always, the DPAC is one of the best venues ever for seating and acoustics. It was a true pleasure to see a world class artist at a world class venue. To see who is coming to the DPAC next, check out their website at http://www.DPACNC.com

Travel | Savvy Tips for a DC Family Getaway

Read SobeSavvy.com for Savvy Tips for a
DC Family Getaway

My daughter loves the DMV area and for a Elementary School Graduation gift we packed her bags and surprised her with an instant road-trip to DC!

What makes DC an ideal destination for a family trip? With so many free museums and attractions, you can have fun while learning in our nation’s capital!

STAY | Archer Hotel Falls Church

Stay Above The Rest…..Archer Hotel Falls Church

When staying in the DC metro we made our base camp the Archer Hotel Falls Church in the Mosaic District of Fairfax. Located just 10 miles from Washington, DC, Archer Hotel was formerly a Hyatt House but is currently in its final renovation rebranding as The Archer Hotel. They are small boutique chain of hotels with 8 properties in the nation. Chic rooms and suites are the name of the game with thoughtful public spaces and fast WI Fi throughout the property. Our one bedroom had a great design and space with a full kitchen. We also had a great workout in their modern fitness center which also has a Peloton Bike for guest usage. Later this year a bar/lounge called “AKB” is slated to open adjacent to the lobby.

SobeSavvy Tip: Sign up with email & text and get 20% off your next stay plus news and exclusive offers>> http://www.archerhotel.com/falls-church

DISCOVER | The Mosaic District

The Mosaic District is a modern shopping and dining destination all in one compact area in Fairfax where everything is within walking distance of it all! National chains like Target and Sephora are present. Boutique stores, plus over a dozen restaurants are here also. Coffee and ice cream spots are also up and down the street. Lively public park areas and even free outdoor movies are shown every Thursday night in the Summer. The Mosaic area attracts folks from the entire area who want an all-in- one afternoon or evening. We love this area in Fairfax just 10 miles from the DC area.

SobeSavvy Tip: Be sure to check out there events calendar to see what cool things they have in store to enjoy outdoors. We went to the 1st annual Pride Parade during our visit!

EXPLORE | Historic DC Tours

All aboard the Old Town Trolley Tour…

My husband and I have lived in the metro area and are both from Baltimore so we have spent alot of time in DC. That leads unfortunately to takinbg for granted things you pass by every day during the hustle and bustle of life. Old Town Trolley Tours, brought to you by the Historic Tours of America, brings to life monuments, buildings and the political history of Washington DC. Our informative guide/driver managed to weave together facts and humor in a manner guests of all ages seemed to enjoy. Our stop at the Lincoln Memorial was a highlight. We hiked to the very top to get up and close to the most famous statue of our 16th President. It also afforded and breathtaking view of the National Mall. We even managed to get a good pic of the reflection of the Washington Monumnet in the reflecting pool {hence the name!}.

Next stop : Arlington Cemetery …….

With over 400K graves, the Arlington National Cemetery Tour is a solemn reminder of all those who not only gave their life in wars and conflicts, but it is also the resting place of numerous Americans who made a significant contribution to this nation and her history. John F Kennedy may be the most famous. His eternal flame signifies the hope he had for a better nation. We also paid our respects to the final resting place of Thurgood Marshall and Ruth Bader Gingsberg.

SobeSavvy Tip: Make sure you check out the welcome center which goes into the cemetery’s history and origin.

Also, make reservations in advance and save with a package for both tours >> https://www.trolleytours.com/washington-dc/tickets

We had a blast visiting both the VA and DC area and hope you are inspired by these tips. Thanks for reading about our experiences and memories made in the District. Until next time….😘 Be sure to follow @sobesavvy

#HeighPartyof3 Takes DC | photo credit SobeSavvy.com

Girls Trip Travel Guide @WilmingtoNCoast @CarolinaBeachNC

If you have been following me for awhile, you know that I love to travel and am very fond of NC’s coast. Specifically Wilmington NC’s Historic River District & Island Beaches. I have visited and enjoyed many of it’s family friendly options, so I was really excited to plan a Girl’s Trip. After reading my prior blog posts about Wilmington, my friend wanted to experience it together. Here is a look at our 24 hour itinerary that I organized via TripIt app.

STAY | Aloft Wilmington Coastline Center

My Top 3 reasons for choosing ALOFT Wilmington are as follows:

1. It’s new (just opened Nov 2021) and modern

2. It’s convenient to the Riverfront, Downtown Wilmington, so could walk to most places

3. Full service– has gym, restaurant, bar, rooftop bistro and a coffee bar onsite

DINE | Sips & Eats

If you are a seafood lover like me, then you must dine at Seabird in Wilmington, NC

My friend and I are both foodies, so we were looking forward to dining out during our trip. Our number one focus for cuisine was seafood. We knew that being on the coast was going to be our opportunity to eat local and enjoy fresh seafood. But first…. coffee. Casa Blanca Coffee Roasters (in addition to their amazing coffee, we loved the avocado toast) , Aloft Coffee Bar, and Bespoke Coffee and Dry Goods are just a few places where you can enjoy a great cup of coffee and more in Wilmington.

Casa Blanca, Aloft Coffee Bar, Bespoke Coffee

Dinner reservations are a must at Seabird in Downtown Wilmington. We enjoyed wine perfectly paired with NC oysters, fresh seafood dishes created by Chef Dean Neff and great service at this restaurant.

Raw & Baked NC Oysters + SoftShell Crab at Seabird

For after dinner cocktails, we headed to Cloud 9 Rooftop Bar. There was live entertainment in addition to a nice atmosphere. If you want a small bite, they have a bar menu also. We could walk back to our hotel from there, which was a plus.

Chilling on Cloud 9

At Carolina Beach, we enjoyed lunch at Ocean Grill and Tiki Bar. With oceanfront views, a fun bar area and delicious coastal fare, this restaurant combines the best of beach eats.

Eat and Drink Local at Ocean Grill and Tiki Bar

PLAY | Things To Do

From strawberry picking, shopping local and having fun at the beach~ there’s so much fun to be had in Wilmington,NC and Carolina Beach

We arrived on National Strawberry Picking Day, so the first thing on our to do list was to visit a pick-your-own strawberry farm just outside the city limits Lewis Nursery and Farms with homemade strawberry ice cream and a plant shop.

That evening we checked out a comedy show at Dead Crow Comedy Room and the next day got our steps in along the Riverwalk.

Downtown Wilmington~ Dead Crow Comedy Room & Riverwalk

What’s a girls trip without shopping?! We both love to shop local and picked up some artisan goods at the Riverfront Farmers Market on Saturday morning.

Shop jewelry, teas,candles and more at the Riverfront Farmers Market

No trip to the coast is complete without spending some time near the water. As we made our way to the sand, we stopped at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk to take in the sights and have a classic glazed donut from Britts Donuts.

B is for Boardwalk and Britts Donuts

Spending a relaxing day at the beach was just what we needed. No chairs, no problem. Being able to rent an umbrella and chairs from Tony Silvagni Surf Schools was such a convenience for us. They provided great customer service and made our time at the beach very comfortable.

Getting some Vitamin Sea at Carolina Beach

Grateful for the memories made and the opportunity to share this trip guide with you! I hope you are inspired to make your way to Wilmington,NC & Carolina Beach soon. For more ideas be sure to visit https://www.wilmingtonandbeaches.com/

Spring Over To @WilmingtoNCoast and Follow This Family Friendly List Of Things To Do

Spring has sprung in Wilmington,NC and I thought it would be a great idea to hop over during Easter weekend for a chance to explore the many things to do with my Heigh Party of 3 crew. It’s an easy two hour drive from Raleigh,NC, so for us we truly enjoy the chance to visit the Wilmington River District & Island Beaches.

Get your Official Visitors Guide at WilmingtonNCVisitorGuide.com

If you are traveling to Wilmington soon, check out my list of family friendly things to do in the springtime or anytime!

1. Airlie Gardens

These expansive gardens are truly a jewel of this region. Acres upon acres of blooming flowers, ponds and wildlife are all here. Our daughter had fun using her ‘plant app’ to snap photos of flowers/plants and in return it would identify it. Make sure you check out The Bottle Chapel during your visit. It is a one of a kind structure designed with over 4,000 colorful glass bottles!

2. Fish House Grill

Located on the intracoastal, this seafood restaurant doesn’t disappoint. Their food pairs well with the view. Great drinks, mahi tacos and their soft shell crab sandwich was fresh and delicious!

Soft Shell Crab Sandwich at Fish House Grill

3. Practical Magic Store

With the full moon happening on the day of our arrival, I thought it would be cool to get some ritual tools. This store had more than I could ever imagine! From candles, clothing, teas,herbs, all types of gems, books, crystals and more. It is one of the most interesting stores to be found in Wilmington.

Crystals and Gemstones Galore can be found at the Practical Magic Store!

4. Embassy Suites by Hilton Wilmington Riverfront

Embassy Suites By Hilton Wilmington Riverfront is a great base camp for families when visiting the area. It’s an all suite property with indoor pool and a mini Starbucks in the lobby! Besides great views of the Cape Fear River/ marina, this property provides spacious rooms and a comfortable sofa bed for our kid. For us parents, we enjoyed the manager’s reception,where we each received 2 complimentary cocktails!

Cheers to a wonderful stay at Embassy Suites by Hilton Wilmington Riverfront

5. Wilmington Riverwalk

One of our favorite reasons for staying on the riverfront means that we can enjoy scenic walks along the two- mile Riverwalk. We always take a leisurely morning stroll or jog on the river when we visit. You get a front row seat to history, Battleship North Carolina, leisure boats, bird wildlife and all the shops, restaurants and hotels that line this iconic waterway walk. There are informative markers and seats along the way if you want to take a break and watch the river flow by.

Let’s Stroll along The Wilmington Riverwalk

6. Carolina Candy Company & Gifts

Looking for a sweet local treat? Stop by Carolina Candy company where toffee rules the day. They make small batch toffee on the premise and only use all natural ingredients (no fructose here) Milk Chocolate , Caramel, Dark Chocolate Toffee and more are here to satisfy your sweet toffee tooth. Super friendly service and MAYBE if you ask nicely they may let you sample a few before deciding which one to purchase!

Pair it with wine, cheese or enjoy it on its own

7. The Veggie Wagon

Headed to the Carolina Beach and looking for a quick snack to eat? Make sure you stop by The Veggie Wagon for all sorts of grab n go goodness. Fresh sandwiches, salads and even locally made soaps can be found at The Veggie Wagon. Plus the hand spun milkshakes are a kid pleaser!

8. Fort Fisher State Recreation Park

We drove down to Fort Fisher State Recreation Park as dusk approached. The weather was not the best but the ocean breeze is always a welcome sensation. This beach is enjoyed by locals and visitors alike because it is separate from the busier beach areas. My husband is a history buff and he read all the historical
markers as this area was active during the Civil War. Whether you go for the sea, sand or history, there’s something for everyone at Fort Fisher State Recreation Park.

Get some Vitamin Sea at Fort Fisher State Recreation Park

9. STEAM Restaurant and Bar

Easter Brunch at STEAM, located inside the Embassy Suites )where we stayed), was not only convenient but it was very memorable in a great way. Their bright and airy atmosphere is always inviting and their food is always delicious. NC oysters, fresh local seafood and a juicy burger for our kid, left us all satisfied. But I am so happy we saved room for dessert because the bananas foster bread pudding was soooooo amazing! A sweet ending to a fantastic meal.

10. Cameron Art Museum

Support the Arts at Cameron Art Museum

Cameron Art Museum is another gem of the area. This museum always has some interesting art show/installations and this visit was no different. They have two new exhibits called “20 Years” , which features pieces of work by artists who have all had their work featured at the museum since it’s opening 20 years ago. Make sure you also check out “State Of The Art” which showcases artist either native or living in North Carolina. Watch my Cam Art Museum IG Reel to get a glimpse as to why you should at it to your trip itinerary the next time you and your family visit Wilmington.

All you need to know before you go can be found on this website : https://www.wilmingtonandbeaches.com/

There is so much to see and do, that I am already planning to return for a girls trip in May. Be sure to follow me on IG/Twitter/Facebook @SobeSavvy as I’m always happy to share and inspire your next adventure!

I AM Strong, Loved , Enough ~ This Affirmation Helped Me Get Thru My Miscarriage

This week has been one of the hardest weeks of my life…

At 48 years old, I discovered I was pregnant. I conceived naturally and surprisingly. This is not an Early April Fools joke.. we were indeed shocked at the results of the home pregnancy test that I took on Feb 27th.

Like many first trimester moms to be, we chose to keep info mostly ourselves but I did tell a few family and friends as we began this journey. Although the odds were against me considering my age, I immediately started doing all the things necessary to prepare my body like taking prenatal vitamins. I remained positive and was doing all things to protect my peace while preparing my body,mind,spirit for what was growing inside me. I got ahead of myself and started posing with my imaginative bump when really it’s just bloating /fat that early in the game. I did have the glow already though!

Monday, we had our 8 week ultrasound and although we got to see the little image on the screen, there was no heartbeat. I had started spotting over the weekend and had some concerns. The week before I said to my husband, I don’t feel pregnant anymore, so I was thinking that maybe there was going to be nothing to see. But there it was. Tears flowed as the realization came to fruition that I had a miscarriage at 7 weeks, 3 days. Per the size of what the technician saw, she advised the heart probably stopped around that time.

Ironically, I had downloaded an app called Hi Mommy and saved a screenshot that day as it talked about if hot tubs were good during pregnancy. Because of upcoming trips we had planned, I was making a note that we’ll guess i can’t get in the hot tub. Being though I was pregnant over 10 years ago with our daughter, I had forgot all the rules and was taking note of everything!

I am currently going thru miscarriage now. Although there is the option of medicine or a surgical procedure, I opted to try to continue with it naturally. Google said it would feel like a heavy period. Not for me. The pain is like labor and contractions. It all hurts ..physically and emotionally. I went thru feeling guilty like did I take the right amount of prenatal vitamins, did I do enough?! The answer is yes I did everything right. I no longer am blaming myself or anything. I have accepted what has happened and know that I can grow past this because I CHOOSE NOT TO WORRY ABOUT THINGS I CAN’T CONTROL.

My husband has been beyond supportive in all of this. He always says “ ..wanna hear God laugh, make plans ”. Because this was an unplanned pregnancy, Barry was anxious about it all and concerned about my health. My daughter, while I thought she would be elated with the idea of having a sibling was ok with not being a big sister. She shared her thoughts after I told her on Monday that I went to the doctors to confirm pregnancy and I’m not anymore. She said she is fine with being an only child because babies cry too much and things would have been chaotic. She said she enjoys her peace. They both have been taking care of me, allowing me to rest and loving me in their beautiful ways.

Having a miscarriage is often not discussed and it is a hard thing to go thru. If you ever want to know how to support someone during this time, let me just share some of the sweet ways that were shown to me by the strong women friends in my life:

1. Essencie saw all of this in the cards. Her interpretation of the messages meant for me were vital. On the day of my ultrasound she pulled the 5 of cups ,then the 5pm cups in reverse for advise. All the things you said resonated with me and your last message about discernment is my focus

2. Khara prayed with me and for me and reminded me to lean on her as she can offer not only comfort but information. Thru her, I gained a new friend Taylor who was the first to ask do I need anything

3. Ro, whom I never met in person, is a god send friend. I never met a more generous soul who knows how to not only be a listening ear but show support in so many ways. She spoils me to the point where I know if something comes to house addressed to Lovely Leslie, it’s her surprising me. The flowers and balloons put a smile on my face. It reminds me to stop and smell the roses and the beauty of your heart.

4. My sister Toya checked in on me one day out the blue. We decided to take the convo from text to talking and actually was able to confide in one another about having a miscarriage. It is not something women openly discuss. Having someone to talk to is priceless and it is important to check in on the people you care about. You never know what someone is going thru.

5. Dee, thank you for answering all my questions and just being a text away. I was getting anxious about not being able to get a n Ob GyN appt. Having a friend that is a midwife is a blessing. When I started spotting she told me that does not always mean miscarriage that it can be normal for some in first trimester. She has offered to Uber me some food and even called in to her OB Dr friend to let her know to expect me for my upcoming follow up visit in April

6. My ride or die Michelle always comes thru in the clutch. She had no clue about this as I was purposely hiding from talking to her because she was celebrating her birthday in February etc and I wanted to wait until I had definitive info. The moment I shared with her about my miscarriage, she was like what can I send you: food ,snacks, blankets , movies, a night at a hotel. I mean her list had my mind swirling but I said hmm I wish I was laying under your weighted blanket you have at your house. Hour later, instacart delivers a weighted blanket from CVS. It feels like a big ole hug and it’s comfy and cozy. And your husband Jeff, is the best by default as he has chosen you as a wife making us family/friends for life! We love y’all!

7. My cousin Kelli.. I love it when she asks me how do I feel. It forces me to get out of my comfort zone of not talking about my feelings and because I know she loves and cares about me genuinely, she provides a safe space for me to be vulnerable. Plus she and her husband Dev create feel good music and just released The Truth Vol 1. “Victory” and “ I’m Good” are on constant rotation and are providing me with valuable reminders to dance, leave the past behind, move on with your life and remember the blessings from “the one who gives me power”!

8. My Cuzzo Tanya and I have a life path that seems to align itself in mysterious ways. She once called me her guardian angel/fairy god Cuzzo but she has been there for me in times of need. I didn’t know who I could ask about this but was thankful that she shared her experiences with me. She stopped working at an event to call me and offer comforting words. I imagine our lil berries are somewhere together in a field of sunflowers.

9. Melani, you are an amazing woman and an awesome friend who no matter the distance or time passes, we pick up where we left off. The love never dies. Your knowledge on healing and herbs are going to be essential in these next phases for me. Thank you for sending yarrow and the biggest bag of raspberry leaves, I have ever seen from Amazon.

Girrrrrlllaahh, I’m gonna be sipping tea, taking womb baths, using as a hair rinse, bath bomb, face spritz.. you name it.. all thanks to you. Plus I can always count on a good Bmore kee kee when we talk and a lol moment of some sort when we talk. Thanks for sending me this meme:

10. Speaking of raspberry.. the fetus got to approximately raspberry size and my Mom started calling it Lil Raz ( sounds like a member of B2K right..smh. Lol) . One day in our texts, which I don’t save because it be too much back n forth, I mention to her how it just smells like death around me. To resolve that she has some aromatherapy coming my way via Etsy. No matter how old you get, you find in the hard times, you still want your Mom. She was one of the first people I told because in the case of an emergency,she would have needed to be here with Ava while B and I were at the hospital. After finding out about the loss , I compared it to feeling like you won a trip and then the trip gets cancelled. She was sad about the loss as well because it reminded her of losing a child to stillbirth about 50 years ago. Nonetheless, my Mom reminds me to celebrate life. Her 68th birthday is Saturday and while originally we were going to MD to celebrate, we will meet halfway in Richmond for lunch. I think we all could use a hug in real life! Here she is kicking off her birthday week looking great at almost 68!

I am grateful to the people who have offered kind words, support, prayers, virtual hugs, wisdom, a listening ear ( my Sis in Law Cynthia is the best) , and want to thank ALL of you who reminded me that I am STRONG. I am LOVED. I am ENOUGH

We will get through this. I will get through this. I know too many strong women like my cousin Tiffany and BFF Teri to know that I can and I will!

See you hopefully on the sunny side of things soon ( Kristen, thanks for being so understanding and I know you will be there when I am ready for our self care dates.. Laing, I know you got me with doing some grounding work after this ) and I can’t wait to get some local hugs from Anna & Loretta ….. until then, I am relaxing and releasing with love. Always! ❤️

STAY Relax -Dine -Play at @HyattCentric SouthPark Charlotte #HyattCentricExplorer

STAY | Hyatt Centric SouthPark Charlotte

Conveniently located in SouthPark’s premier shopping, dining and entertainment district, Hyatt Centric invites you to enjoy a fun, sophisticated stay in the heart of some of the best Charlotte has to offer. Being able to walk to SouthPark mall to go shopping, get pampered at Sassy Nail Bar and being steps away from Steak 48 made staying at this Hyatt Centric location ideal for my weekend getaway.

This 175-room lifestyle hotel features an all natural modern design that reflects Charlotte’s history and beauty. As soon as you walk in the lobby, there is a gorgeous curved centerpiece staircase, a colorful, metallic six-foot-tall peacock statue, and eclectic art such as a mural by local artist, Hillary Siber Edwards that features “100 porcelain gold ceramic mining pans intended to represent the 100 counties in North Carolina and the region’s history as the first documented gold discovery in the United States.”

There are two on-site dining options : MIZU, a rooftop restaurant where you can catch the sunset while enjoying dinner and bar service in a lounge setting …

…..and IRO, the hotel’s lobby restaurant where I enjoyed a tasty breakfast during my stay. Order the omelette your way or any of the other healthy options on the menu.

I also enjoyed the intentional details that went into making the rooms comfy for guests like dedicated reading lights on either side of the bed, USB outlets for device charging, large 55” televisions, rainfall showerheads, and more! Additional hotel amenities include meeting and event spaces, complimentary on-site parking, complimentary Wi-Fi and a rooftop fitness center featuring Peleton bikes.

I would definitely return and recommend for a wonderful place to relax, play, work, dine and stay >> @HyattCentric

For more info and to book your rooms go to hyattcentricsouthparkcharlotte.com

FAMILY TRAVEL | 3 Day STAY•EAT•PLAY Guide to San Francisco, CA

San Francisco Family Travel Fun
By SobeSavvy.com

San Francisco is one of my favorite cities in the USA. There is a song that goes 🎶 I left my heart in San Francisco 🎶 but I now say I found my heart there because I love visiting. Our fondness for San Fran started in 2010 when my husband and I were working there as consultants and discovered we were pregnant! Our daughter is the heart we found and it was with great pleasure to take her for her first time back to the city where she so amusingly says “was stirred in the pot” ! 😅 Our 3 day itinerary took place over the MLK JR. Weekend and we planned an itinerary based on places we have explored before along with some new places to discover. We flew non-stop from RDU to SFO on United Airlines and was ready to roll after getting a rental car from Avis.

#HeighPartyof3 has arrived in SFO and we are ready to roll!

STAY | Le Méridien San Francisco

Check In to Le Méridien San Francisco

My husband chose Le Méridien San Francisco hotel not only because he is a Marriott Gold member but because of its central location. It’s located in the Financial District, which is not too touristy or crowded, especially on the weekends. Our one bedroom ‘City By The Bay’ suite offered a spacious, modern room with floor to ceiling windows & balcony views of the Bay Bridge & TransAmerica building, a comfortable sofa bed for our child and a separate king size bedroom for us. We utilized room service and also enjoyed bar bites/ handrafted cocktails from their on-site lounge, Bar 333. We could walk to many shopping and dining options as well as places like Chinatown, SOMA, and the Ferry Building, which is where we started on Day 1 to get something to eat.

EAT | Harborview Restaurant & Bar + more!

Dinner at Harborview Restaurant and Bar was a fantastic choice for delicious Dim Sum, Cocktails and Cantonese Cuisine with a view!

San Francisco is a foodie paradise because of the vast variety of choices. There is truly something for everyone but if you don’t have dim sum while in San Francisco, were you really there? We decided to try a place that we could walk to from our hotel and came highly recommended for its service and authentic Chinese cuisine. Feast your eyes on our wonderful dining experience at Harborview Restaurant & Bar ⤵️

BRUNCH-LUNCH-DINNER-DESSERT

Dungeness Crab, Clam Chowder, inside the Ferry Building, Pork Bun, Boba Tea

San Francisco is a place where you can let your foodie flag fly high and our tastebuds were ready for take off! Since we love seafood, we couldn’t help ourselves to have lots of it during our stay. Here are some of the places we enjoyed during our visit:

  • Ferry Building
  • Imperial Tea Court
  • Hog Island Oyster Co.
  • Good Luck Cafe & Deli
  • Fog Harbor Fish House
  • Biscoff Coffee Corner
  • Ghirardelli Square
  • Brioche Bakery & Cafe
  • Réveille Coffee Co.
  • The Lake Chalet Seafood Bar & Grill ( Oakland )
  • House of NanKing
Dirty Chai Latte, Clam Chowder in a Sourdough Bowl, Sweets in Ghirardelli Square, Sunday Brunch & Bread Pudding

PLAY | California Academy of Sciences & Madame Tussauds + more!

Welcome to the California Academy of Sciences

Adventure awaits at the California Academy of Sciences ! Here is where you and your family can experience 4 exhibits in one place. There’s an Aquarium, Rainforest, Natural History Museum, Planetarium as well as a cool Geology collection and Naturalist Center. No matter where you start, getting ready to learn, explore and leave like our kid did..with this smile!

#HeighPartyof3 at the Morrison Planetarium located in the California Academy of Sciences. We enjoyed this immersive experience!

Madame Tussauds San Francisco, located in Fisherman’s Wharf, is the place to go to see life like icons in wax. It’s remarkable to learn about the process and get information about the figures. My favorite thing to do is sing and dance with the musicians while my husband challenges us to a pose off with the celebrities. Our daughter loves taking selfies there and it’s a fun time for all! There are so many reasons why Madame Tussauds is the #worldsgreatestwaxmuseum, but you can get a glimpse here via my video.

Fun Times at Madame Tussauds San Francisco

Sightseeing Must Do’s

San Francisco is a vibe and a feast for the eyes! So scenic, so artsy, so eclectic and unique. You can get a taste of city and coastal life all in one visit. My husband loves the architecture of the city, while my daughter enjoyed seeing the Pacific Ocean for the first time. We did so much on Day 2 & Day 3 of the trip but here are some of the sights we enjoyed during our visit: 

  • Ferry Building/Bay Bridge
  • Chinatown
  • Yerba Buena Gardens
  • No Ceilings Mural
  • Embarcadero Center #ArtofEC
  • TransAmerica Building
  • Golden Gate Park
  • Pier 39/Sea Lions
  • Fisherman’s Wharf
  • Golden Gate Bridge
  • Visit Sausalito
  • Japantown
  • Lombard St
  • Hayes St
  • Painted Ladies/Alamo Square
  • Visit Oakland
  • Ocean Beach/ Pacific Ocean

We had an amazing time during our 3 day stay. The weather was great and hugging family/friends was a bonus! San Francisco owes us nothing. Fond memories were mad and fun was had by all. Until next time, enjoy this recap video of our trip and I hope you are inspired San Francisco soon!

See the Magic of Broadway and Celebrate the Music, History and Journey of The Temptations @DPAC @AINTTOPROUD musical Now Showing Dec 7th – 12th in Durham NC

Last night, I had a chance to witness the magic of Broadway at DPAC in Durham, NC. AIN’T TOO PROUD – THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THE TEMPTATIONS tells the unforgettable story of the legendary quintet that Billboard Magazine named the greatest R&B group of all time. The audience got to discover what it took for them to get to theat number one spot. It took talent, sacrifice, perseverance, love, some funk and a whole lot of soul!

From the music to the choreography, which won the 2019 Tony Award for Best Choreography, this musical depicts The Temptations’ extraordinary journey. Their brotherhood set the foundation for every musical group that has come after them. The original members may be gone but the music lasts forever. Ain’t Too Proud is a must see production that tells history like you’ve never seen before to an amazing musical score!

I was in awe of the actors as they sang, danced (I lost count of how many splits David Ruffin did) and relived some of the many highlights of The Temptations life and treasured hits, including “My Girl,” “Just My Imagination,” “Get Ready,” “Papa Was a Rolling Stone” and so many more.

Every member of the original group played a role in their success. However, I left with a new found respect for Otis Williams, his ambition and his tenacity to keep the group stronger together. Like Aristotle said “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts“.

The show is here until Dec 12th, so get your tickets now at dpacnc.com

Recap | Atlanta Food & Wine Festival 2021 ~ Bites, Sips & Sights #AFWF2021 @ATLFoodandWine

Atlanta Food and Wine Festival – Saturday Tasting Tents Recap by SobeSavvy.com

Atlanta Food and Wine Festival IS BACK! Sept. 9th-12th and I couldn’t be more happier to indulge and celebrate southern cuisine. The Atlanta Food and Wine Festival featured 250 restaurants, artisans, chefs and producers. Located in Midtown in the Historic Fourth Ward Park, the outdoor festival included unlimited food, cocktails, all-day entertainment and Yelp curators. Saturday/Sunday’s Tasting Tents started with VIP access from 1 – 2 p.m., followed by general admission from 2- 5 p.m. SobeSavvy.com attended Saturday’s event and here are some of my favorite highlights:

Grab your tasting cup and map and let the foodie fun begin!

BITES

There were endless food bite choices throughout the park. Truly a foodie heaven on earth! We tried pork belly, shrimp & grits, and sea scallops just to name a few! Saturday’s Tasting featured the festival’s first ever Barbecue Battle competition, where top chefs competed for the ‘Best Barbecue Bite’. This one was my fave because it had amazing flavor and it was melt in your mouth good!

SIPS

Sip, Sip,, Hooray for Unlimited Wine, Beer and Spirits available for sampling at the Atlanta Food and Wine Festival. My favorite rosé wine by Jean Luc Colombo was on tap and the Aperol Spritz definitely was the most colorful cocktail of the day. It literally was bright orange and also quite refreshing. Coca Cola was also onsite promoting their new zero sugar soda by using it in a few unique cocktails. White and Red Wine were available also by a number of wineries. Stella Artois had a great set up where guests were given a engraved classic beer glass. Black Owned Gladys Wine was on site promoting their delicious white wines from Hungary. Bourbon lovers enjoyed the Makers Mark Stand where they were making a signature cocktail called the “Gold Rush”. I plan to recreate the recipe as seen here at home!

Cocktail Recipe ~ Maker’s Mark Gold Rush. I tried it at the Atlanta Food and Wine Festival and enjoyed it!

SIGHTS

Atlanta being one of the most diverse cities in America, made for great people watching. The Publix Demo Stage doubled as a shady respite from the sun and heat. For the first time in this event’s history, the live demos were included with admission. Guests watched some of their favorite chefs show their expertise and talent on the elevated stage. There were yard games like jenga and cornhole to play as well as selfie / Instagram worthy moments thanks to the beautiful lounge setups and creative backdrops by Boxwood Event Rentals. Check out this shot by yours truly:

In effort to curb hunger and reduce food waste, Atlanta Food & Wine Festival partnered with Second Helpings Atlanta to collect fresh, surplus food from the festival to donate to hunger relief agencies. In addition, they will support Children of Conservation, with proceeds dedicated to the conservation of endangered species through education, habitat preservation and wildlife sanctuary.  

We had a great time and encourage you to mark your calendars for next year’s event happening June 2-5,2022. For more information, go to atlfoodandwinefestival.com