Follow the road & follow your dreams!

Hello Kindness Gems babes! I hope you all have been having an amazing summer so far!! What is more fun for the summer than a road trip?! As you guys know, KG went on a fun summer road trip up the Cali coast to kick off summer but today I wanted to give you recommendations and cool places to see if you were to venture on a cross country road trip!! At this exact time last year, my best friend and I packed up her Jeep and left the East Coast on a journey to California!! I’m so excited to tell you all about where we stopped, cool sights we saw, and all the restaurants, cafes, and shops you can’t miss!

While this blog post today primarily serves as travel recommendations, I also want to just touch on the idea of following a dream!! My friend and I graduated college with no plan and nowhere to be, so we went with where our heart was calling us! How special it was to embark on an adventure where everything at the end of the path was unknown – living situation, job, school, friends, etc. All I can say from my experience is follow your heart and go in the direction of your dreams!! You won’t regret it! I am so happy and grateful to be where I am today. The little girl who packed up her clothes & high hopes into a tiny ass Jeep is now living the life of her dreams on the California Coast!

So where did it all begin??

The first stop we hit was Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania!! One absolute must see in Pittsburgh is Randyland. Randyland is a vibrant, eccentric, artistic house in the middle of the city that is filled to the brim with artwork from a man named Randy Gilson. Today, his home is regarded as one of America’s most colorful public art landmarks!! You are welcomed to walk through his entire backyard packed with his unique artwork, which was so special to admire and experience his creativity!! The best part is that Randy himself is often there! We met him, and appropriately, he spoke to us about living your dreams saying, “It’s time to put yourself on the front burner, turn up the heat, and start cooking up your dreams.”

Stop 2: Nashville!! Ofcourse we had to pass through Nashville! SO. MUCH FUN. Broadway St. is super cool – every place has its own amazing food, live music, and high-energy environment to offer! Acme Feed & Seed is right at the top of the street & I fully recommend going here because there is something for everyone!! They have phenomenal live music and it’s a multilevel venue with different food offerings on each level! Plus the cocktails are yummy & fun! After you must stop at Tootsies! It’s a world famous “honky-tonk” lounge where you can find very talented individuals performing! Don’t go to Nashville without stopping at Tootsies for sure!

Next up: New Orleans!! Party time! Bourbon Street is straight out of a movie – so much to see, so much to drink, so many crazy people!! Every bar you stop into is super fun with live music and dancing!! You can even just grab an alcoholic slushie and walk around the streets – so fun! If you are looking for cool spots to grab a drink I’d recommend Razzoo Club and Patio & Fat Catz Music Club. And for food in New Orleans, the Gumbo Shop is 100% worth the wait!! If you show up on a weeknight the line shouldn’t be too long to get in and it is some of the best traditional New Orleans food!

Off to Texas babyyyyy! This state is certainly full with so much to see and do! Austin was one of the coolest cities we visited while here, and in general!! The phrase “Keep Austin weird,” remains true to the city so there is a lot of weird things to experience!! If you want to dive into that concept, there is the Museum of Weird on Sixth Street that will give you a good sense of just how weird the city is!! I definitely recommend just walking around the city to see all the artwork and creativity it brings to the table! In terms of food, Arlo’s makes amazing vegan burgers that will have you coming back regardless of if you are vegan or not! If you have a lot of time to spend in Texas, I also definitely recommend hitting San Antonio & Big Bend National Park!

On to New Mexico & Arizona! New Mexico cities worth visiting are Santa Fe and Taos. Very cute shops, lots of outdoor sports, and cool camping sights are what to expect from New Mexico! Then, please do not skip White Sands National Park!! It’s endless acres of beautiful white sand hills, so breathtaking!! Go at sunset to get beautiful sky views too!! After New Mexico is Arizona, one of my favorite states! Tucson is a cool city with good Mexican food & lots of cool parks to see with HUGE cacti! My absolute favorite city in Arizona is Sedona. It is sooo special, the positive energy this place has is unmatched!! Red rock views for dayzzzzzz. 100% a must visit city! Go for a hike throughout the Red Rock Trail, explore the cool gemstone shops in downtown, and dine at 89 Agave Cantina!! The Mexican food is some of the best I’ve had with one of the best views I’ve ever seen – not a bad dinner if you ask me!!

Then it was straight to California!! Hope you guys enjoyed the suggestions and can use them in your travel in the future! The gemstone I want to recommend this week is Moonstone. It’s a stone of feminine energy, it is super good for growth and new beginnings which is what this road trip meant to me – the start of a new beginning in my life! Remember what Randy said ladies, start cooking up your dreams!!


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