Tag: wanderlust

Visit Berkeley Springs, West Virginia

For years we’ve driven through the tiny hamlet of Berkeley Springs, WV on our way to visit family in Pittsburgh. We’ve said repeatedly that “one day” we’ll stop and explore. We finally decided to stop waiting for that one day to come, and put a visit to Berkeley Springs on our itinerary. We’re so glad we did.

Berkeley Springs has an eclectic vibe and is a haven for artists and art-lovers. Pop into most any store and you will find local art of every description for sale. Washington Street/522 is very walkable, and filled with quirky and interesting shops.

I loved this shop. They have great jewelry, clothing and home goods. I’ll take one of everything, please!

If you’re just passing through, we recommend stretching your legs in the heart of the town, Berkeley Springs State Park. During the summer months, the natural spring water pool is open to the public. There are a couple of bathhouses in the park and you can make an appointment for a soak at one of them, have a sauna or book a massage. Before you leave the park, be sure to pay a visit to George Washington’s bathtub. Yes, Berkeley Springs was even a spa destination for the Father of His Country.

We recommend having lunch or dinner at Tari’s Cafe. It’s a just short stroll from the park. Tari’s is a combination restaurant and art gallery. We chose it because they advertise as gluten-free friendly and our server was certainly knowledgeable about the ingredients in their food. The food was amazing and the service was prompt and friendly. Mark ordered the French Dip (hold the baguette) and went crazy for it. Tari’s showcases glass artwork, so the environment is not super kid-friendly. Honestly, I was a little nervous that I would accidentally hit/buy something with my pocketbook on the way past a display shelf. I’m not the most graceful thing.

Instead of stopping for coffee at a franchise, we opted to caffeinate at Fairfax Coffee House. With exposed brick walls and wood shelving, the Fairfax has a cozy, general store feel. It’s full of local art, most of which is for sale. There are pastries (some are gluten free) and frozen treats on offer, as well as the requisite coffee house drinks. When we tried to tip the barista, she said “Oh, no. We’re tip free here.” Even the restroom is graced with unconventional art and signage.

If you’re there on the weekend, take in a show at the Star Theatre. With a 90 year history, it’s pure nostalgia. The concession stand features popcorn prepared in a 1949 Manley Popcorn Machine, topped with real butter.

Berkeley Springs is a two hour drive from Baltimore or D.C. and a popular, weekend tourist destination. The first time we stopped for lunch was on a Wednesday, and I commented to our server at Tari’s that the town seemed deserted. She said “Yeah. We’re a Thursday through Sunday kind of town.” If you need lodging while in the area, try The Country Inn of Berkeley Springs or Cacapon Resort State Park Lodge, which is a ten minute drive from town.

Pro Tips:
Berkeley Springs police have no chill. No, I don’t know this from first hand experience, but we literally have never gone through there without seeing someone pulled over. Fair warning.

Because Berkeley Springs is a tourist destination, weekend parking is in high demand. We’ve had fairly good luck trolling side streets for an open spot. I’d rather walk a few blocks than feed the meter.

Shop owners take a break after the tourists go home each week. Many of the shops are closed on Monday. Some don’t re-open until Thursday. We recently visited on a Tuesday and very few shops were open along Washington/522.

We love this quirky, little town.

To learn more about Berkeley Springs: https://berkeleysprings.com/
This post is not sponsored, I just enjoy sharing good things with my readers.

Disclosure: In addition to occasional sponsored posts, Arthurized Home uses clickable affiliate links. That means that I may receive a small commission from sales at no extra charge to you. As always, my opinion is 100% my own, and I only recommend things that I truly love or use myself. Thank you for patronizing the brands that support Arthurized Home!

Copyright 2019 © Arthurized Home – All Rights Reserved. This post is the original content of Arthurized Home. If you’re reading this on another site, it’s unArthurized.

Beach Week Capsule Wardrobe

Now that school has let out for the summer, it’s time to hit the road for some fun in the sun! Once a year, my family gets together for beach week. Maybe we’re strange, because beach week is spent on the beach; we rarely leave the island. We read, go shelling, run and walk, play in the tide pools, build sand castles, people-watch and doze under the umbrella. The men, nieces and nephews boogie-board for hours on end. We try to solve the Mazematician’s puzzles.

Mazematician throwing us a curveball. No left turn?!

In the evening, we play all sorts of games. Some favorites are Codenames, Telestrations, Exploding Kittens, Apples to Apples and Balderdash. Those with more patience for board games (bored) than I, play Pandemic for hours on end. Our evening Mad Libs sessions on the porch are legendary. Some of our favorite inside jokes and malapropisms are born on the porch during beach week. We plan one evening for the entire 20+ person group to go souvenir shopping at the local gift shop.

Shutting down the beach at sunset.

Beach week is very casual. Tee shirts and shorts are the order of the day. Because we have laundry facilities in the beach house, we can pack lean and throw clothes in the wash as needed.

Mexican Blanket Flower growing on the dunes.

Recently, I’ve started packing capsule wardrobes for travel. They’re amazing because they are like Garanimals™ for grown folks! Grab a top and some pants and they coordinate. No thinking necessary, and it doesn’t matter what’s in the wash at the moment!

Here’s how I plan our capsule wardrobe:

Decide on the number of outfits needed. I’ll pack four tops, three bottoms and we’ll wear one of the capsule outfits on our travel day. (Because nudity is frowned upon during family beach week.) With this small capsule, we have the potential for 12 different looks and won’t have to repeat the same outfit during a week long vacation. In case of cooler weather, I’m adding one jersey and one pair of jeans.

Pick a color scheme. It’s red, white, blue and khaki for us this year. Look at the colors you wear routinely. What do you have on hand? Which colors are most flattering on you? If you are able to dress the whole family in the same color scheme, even casual snapshots will be color-coordinated.

Each top must work with each of the bottom pieces. Outfit coordination is easiest if only the tops or only the bottoms are patterned, not both. Pattern mixing in a capsule wardrobe is expert level. If that’s your jam, go for it!

Pack shoes that will work with each outfit. Neutral colored flip-flops and a pair of kicks are all we need for the week.

If you’re fancier than we are, pack coordinating accessories. I’ll pack one everyday necklace and one set of earrings. Maybe throw in a scarf? Hubby keeps his accessories minimal with a leather wrap bracelet.

These bags contain all of our clothes for the week plus bathing suits, cover-ups, running clothes, lounge wear, pajamas, socks and underwear, We had enough room left over to pack hand towels and washcloths in the tote bag.

So, that’s the sum total of my capsule wardrobe knowledge. This makes packing for any trip so much easier. Now, it’s your turn! Will you give this a try? Are you already a capsule wardrobe expert?

Pro tip for flying to your vacation destination: In each piece of checked luggage, pack at least one complete outfit for every member of your family. If the airline misdirects a piece of luggage, you each still have a fresh change of clothes.

Have a wonderful, relaxing vacation!

Disclosure: In addition to occasional sponsored posts, Arthurized Home uses clickable affiliate links. That means that I may receive a small commission from sales at no extra charge to you. As always, my opinion is 100% my own, and I only recommend things that I truly love or use myself. Thank you for patronizing the brands that support Arthurized Home!

Copyright 2019 © Arthurized Home – All Rights Reserved. This post is the original content of Arthurized Home. If you’re reading this on another site, it’s unArthurized.