Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Phillips Seafood & The Charm'tastic Mile

Inner Harbor, Baltimore, MD, USA
I was excited to be a part of an event last night held in Baltimore's legendary Phillips Seafood Restaurant that celebrated them becoming an addition to The Charm'tastic Mile.

The Charm'tastic Mile, an idea spurred by the Magnificent Mile in Chicago, is the 1.3 mile path connecting Downtown-West, the Inner Harbor and Harbor East (per their business social media account). The Charm'tastic Mile was introduced on April 25, 2016.

Founder of the Charm'tastic Mile Derrick Vaughan along with Phillips Seafood Restaurant were both promoting last night's event,  adding the seafood restaurant, a Baltimore staple in the Inner Harbor since 1980, to the Charm'tastic map. 

The seafood was a-plenty and the drinks were on hand, but one of my favorite special touches of this event was the number 42 baseball cupcakes for Jackie Robinson Day. The anniversary of the 65th year of the Orioles opening day (4/15/1954) was also celebrated at the event with cherished memorabilia. The evening had promised to be a celebration of Baltimore culture and sports, and with seafood and memorabilia certainly delivered, they held to their promise. 

Thank you to Derrick Vaughan and Phillips Seafood for having me! And thank you to my friend Shelby Blondell for attending with me. She brought her product the Sheller to this Baltimore themed event too- and if you haven't checked it out yet, you definitely should right here. 

Have a great Tuesday, Baltimore!

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Let's Getaway!

2010 Madison Rd, Stanardsville, VA 22973, USA

 When the Getaway House invited me to stay at their location closest to D.C. for two nights- I was thrilled. I had been looking for a place just like this and could not figure out exactly what would be best for Ella and I. 

I love traveling with just my dog. So many people have commented on this over the years that they find it strange. 
I've heard many people say this and I can relate- I am always on. Always. 
I feel like when I'm around people or talking in my line of work I'm upbeat, I'm positive, I'm a friend, a daughter, a dog mom...the list goes on. Sometimes, as you may know, a person just needs a break. I'm always online. I joke that I live online. I spend (thanks to my iphone) 8+ hours a day -wait for it- ON AVERAGE each day on my phone. 
Thanks so much Apple, you are truly special for creating this feature. 

I know I don't have to use this feature. I waited to use it actually, fearing the worst, but one day I was just generally curious.
I never turned it off after that.
The other day the average went down to 7 hours and I was proud of myself.


So I searched for a space that would offer solitude, no technology, be dog friendly, and be a close trip. Enter the Getaway House. The website offers several destinations:

  • Washington DC. - this is in Stanardsville, VA
  • Atlanta
  • Boston
  • L.A.
  • New York
Each cabin is named after the staff's grandparents, how cute is that. My cabin was "Connie".

The outdoor seating area- they also provided a lead for Ella so she could hang out outside as well.
Cabins, Location and Cost
I quickly chose D.C., a 2 person cabin (they also have 4), and that my pup would be coming. They charge a $40 deposit for pets, but you get a complimentary BarkBox, which came SO in handy. Ella loved her toys, and it kept her occupied and she also loved the treats. 
Typical prices depending on season and time of the week, can range from $99-$199 a night. Not bad if there are two of you or more! Honestly, not bad for one person either, considering the prices of hotels or other lodging. 
The distance from my house was about 2 hours and 45 minutes, so easily about 2 hours and 15 or 2 hours and 30 minutes from Baltimore City to Stanardsville, VA. Not far at all! I recommend that you go in the middle of the day however (earlier the better) to avoid the 495/66 traffic.

Kitchen with stovetop, sink, mini fridge, cooking utensils, radio and landline for emergencies.

Complimentary s'mores kit.

Ella's Barkbox.

Now What? Activity Book and pencil inside of phone lockbox.

Nice touches during the stay (see above photos):
  • A complimentary s'mores kit! So nice. I ate way too many s'mores, by the way.
  • Books to read (really good books I might add like The Nordic Theory of Everything and How To Stay Alive In The Woods).
  • A guide book on the cabin including nearby hiking and mountain trails.
  • An activity book (and pencil) with ideas, how to make a campfire, how to meditate and more!

Here were my favorite features about the cabin:
  • The technology (cell phone) lockbox for a truly unplugged experience.
  • A USB chargeable lamp that was used at night for reading and outdoors.
  • A stovetop for cooking.
  • Campfire kits for purchase.
  • Food, coffee, tea for purchase, so essentially you don't really need to take much!
  • It was so clean and easy to clean up afterwards.
  • Although tiny, there was a space for every thing (more on this to come in my next blog).
  • There was AC.
  • The water and shower was HOT! I could not get over this. It was awesome.
  • There is a nice walking trail nearby with clear tree markers to guide the way. It was a nice easy walk around the campsite.

The USB lantern, s'mores kit, cell phone lockbox, guide book and for fun book.

Cooking on the stovetop.

Ella snuggled into the pillows.

Dinner over the fire.

My 6984304802 s'more.

Below is a quick tour of the cabin:

Then below is a quick look at the area, especially if you are apprehensive about going alone, this should help:

Helpful Tips:
Before I left I seriously combed through the website to read everything that I could, BUT they also send you emails before you leave that give you information on what is in the cabin, a list of things to bring for your stay, and the day that you are set to arrive, they send you the exact cabin where you will stay along with (bonus) a driving playlist! They really do think of everything. 

Taken on the walking trail nearby.

The campsite area.

FAQ's as listed on the website: https://getaway.house/faq
A journal to help you prepare: https://journal.getaway.house/

Stay tuned for Blog 2 about what I learned, my personal experience and what we did around town, coming soon (including a funny story about my GPS that stopped working).

When you book, this is how it works, from the website:

 I hope that you've found this helpful and that it's answered questions! If you have more please let me know- and don't forget- feel free to use code SARAHBETH25 to get $25 off your booking!

Thank you again to Getaway House for a both unbelievable and unforgettable experience.


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