A Weekend Away in Tennessee

In my opinion, a weekend away from it all, no matter where you go, is good for the soul. 
A weekend away to one of your favorite places in the world, surrounded by friends & family, is VERY good for the soul. 

A few weeks ago, Patrick and I picked up and headed back to the city where we first met, Knoxville, Tennessee for a long weekend spent at the family lake house.  
{I must warn you, you may want to settle down and grab a cup of coffee, this post is quite the long one!} 
For those that may be new-ish to this blog. Surprise! I’m originally from Tennessee. Born & raised! I’ve lived in Texas for nearly two years now, and I’ve grown to love the Lone Star State *almost* as much as the Volunteer State. Both deep rooted in country music & with a strong love of BBQ, the similarities between Tennessee and Texas has made calling Texas “home” much easier. 
Our weekend at the lake house was spent relaxing, reading, watching old movies, swimming, tubing (I’m still sore!) and just hanging out with the family. 
The best part about the lake: there isn’t any phone service! GASP! 
That being said, I took a much needed break from technology, snapping a few photos here and there from our weekend away. 

Our days were spent sipping on drinks, relaxing under the sun & catching up with family that’s spread out across the country. 
One thing we love about the lake house, is that it’s only about an hour from Knoxville.  Having lived in Knoxville for so many years, Patrick and I had a whole lot of good friends (and restaurants!) we couldn’t wait to visit again.  
If you ever find yourself in Knoxville, Tennessee. I’m telling you, you must stop and grab a beer at Downtown Grill & Brewery. I’m not sure if I love it so much because of their delicious food & craft beers … or if it’s just because of the countless fond memories I have with friends in their upstairs bar. Either way, it’s a can’t miss! 
Naturally as soon as we arrived into town, we headed straight to Downtown Grill, the “local watering hole” with good friends in tow. 🙂 
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Another Knoxville can’t miss: walking along Gay Street and visiting the shops of Market Square. Which we certainly had to do during our one day visit in K-town. 
The city looked the exact same as we remembered, but it had also changed a lot too.  It’s funny how when you go back to a place you used to live, you get so excited about seeing how some random new store or restaurant has opened while you were gone. 
Yes, Alice, time still does moves on in Knoxville even though you’re gone. 

Which is probably a good thing.

Because Sweet P’s BBQ was not there when we used to live there! It also opened only a block away from our old apartment!

Which  …. was probably for the best. I can’t imagine living so close to such tempting and delicious food. 😛

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I HIGHLY recommend the tomato & blues salad! Out of the world! 
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Speaking of only living a block away, here’s our old apartment! It was like the grown up version of a college dormitory, but in a good way. We had best friends living downstairs, across the street, and in the building next door. It definitely was a very fun couple of years that I cherish so much! 
Which brings me to another time I also cherish greatly.  Actual college! 
Patrick and I both went to (and met at) the University of Tennessee, so being back in Knoxville we absolutely had to visit campus again.

Tennessee friends, look at the new pedestrian bridge!!  They are getting all fancy on us with all of the new renovations! 
Being a graduate and all, I had to step on the seal. 🙂 
I took the superstition of not stepping on the seal very literally in college. I always avoided it whenever I would walk this route, which was about 2907352975 times a day. 😉 
Hey, the superstition paid off in the end! 
And in case you fashionista’s were interested in my touristy look: 

Before we left Knoxville, we made the trek up to what Tennessee students call “The Hill.” This is the oldest (and prettiest) part of campus and also happens to be one of my favorite spots in the world!

I say that now, years removed from college life.  Back in the day, I would avoid scheduling classes up there at all cost.  The amount of stairs we would have to climb up to get to The Hill during our 15 minute window between classes was unreal!

“Grown Ups” that we are, it was time to leave campus and head back to Houston. We flew out of Atlanta which happily enabled us to stop in Chattanooga, Tennessee on the way to the airport, for dinner with Sarah, my freshman year roomie/bridesmaid.

I hadn’t been to Chattanooga since I was a little kid and my parents took me to See Rock City.  If you’re from TN, you know exactly what Rock City is.  Basically a massive tourist trap. 
Anyway, Chattanooga is absolutely amazing!!!!! The scenery was gorgeous and people were all out and about strolling around the precious downtown. 
I am definitely going to have to come back for a visit lasting longer than only a few hours. 

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We had dinner at the cutest little Italian restaurant in what Sarah called the “Art District,” with a view of the river to boot. 
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Just the bread and garlic sauce alone impressed! Hello garlic sauce filled with parmesan cheese! Why every Italian restaurant doesn’t do this, I will never know. 
I hadn’t seen this dear friend of mine in almost a year, but chatting on a daily basis made it feel as if I had seen her just the day before.  I do love friendships like these! 

And just one more shout out about how gorgeous Chattanooga is, for good measure. 🙂 
It felt like our weekend away ended much quicker than it should have. They do say that time flies when you’re having fun though! 
Patrick and I came back to Houston with heavy hearts, full bellies, a little bit of sunburn and a whole lot of fun memories. It sure does feel good to be back home again, but we’re planning another trip to Tennessee next summer and I’m counting down the days until we see our sweet friends and Lake Norris again. 
I do love traveling to new places, but there is something so great about going back to the places you love the most.  Do you guys have travel destinations that you like to visit every year, too? If so I’d love to hear! I love hearing from you all …. and I’m always looking for inspiration for future travel. 🙂 
As always, thanks for stopping by the blog! 

  • Such a fantastic post. Seems like you had a great time. Such weekend getaways are so essential. 🙂

  • Wow, its gorgeous, the food looks yummy and you seem to have had so much fun! Thank you for Sharing!!

  • Beautiful photos! Looks like you had a great time!

  • Your campus is beautiful, and what a fun time you both had! The building on The Hill reminds me a lot of Berry College in the town I grew up in; I just adore that type of architecture. I'm such a sucker for Chattanooga, my hometown is a little more than an hour away. I took a field trip to Rock City in elementary school, almost broke down crying of fear on the swing bridge! Ha!

  • Ahhh how fun! I'm so glad you got a breath of fresh air AND the chance to visit with loved ones. 🙂 Your old apartment is so cute!!!!

  • GORGEOUS photos, the food looks incredible, I want to stay at that lake and I really really want a weekend away with my hubby now!!!! Adorable post!!

  • Okay thanks! Now I really must visit Tennessee soon! That BBQ looks amazing. Tennessee and Texas are both on my bucket list to travel too. & soon! Looks like you had a wonderful time 🙂