Southern Belle in Training

Affordable Fashion // Attainable Travels // Authentic Living

December 19, 2018

Midweek Ramblings.



{A snapshot from brunch a couple weekends ago. Side note: I can't believe this is the final Midweek Ramblings posts for 2018! Follow me on social media @miss_alk}

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training!




Ramblings:
  • NYFW bound: Whew - has this been a week! Announcing my new job definitely took took the spotlight, so I wanted to make sure to share in today's blog post about the other exciting thing that happened in the last seven days. I'm going to February NYFW!!! Talk about a dream come true for this little blog of mine. The flights are officially booked and the hotel is reserved! The best part is that my partner in crime for the long weekend in the city will be Gentry from Girl Meets Bow (you must follow her if you don't!). I am glad we booked our travel really early so that we can now spend this week and next enjoying the holidays! Full on itinerary planning will resume in January, as NYFW will be here before we know it in mid-February. 😉
  • NYE plans: I was originally planning a five day trip to Charlotte over New Year's and the weekend leading up to it, but with starting my new job the day after Christmas I will have to postpone that. It ended up working out though- as now I have two different fun plans for NYE night! I'm now really excited to be here for my first Virginia New Years!
  • What blog posts I've loved: I thought I'd wrap up today's Ramblings by sharing a few blog posts I've read lately and really enjoyed! I loved this round-up on the best eyeshadow palettes from Cort in Session, a guide to buying designer bags on eBay from Southern Curls and Pearls,  and this holiday outfit from Oh What a Sight To See

Weekend Recaps:
  • Last weekend: Whew- it was a busy one! It kicked off with the Dave Matthews Band concert on Friday night (they're from Charlottesville- very cool to see them in their hometown!). On Saturday, I had work brunch and then went to my friend Kelly's winter orchestra concert! This past Sunday it was my week to teach Sunday School at church, and then that afternoon some girlfriends and I went to lunch at the Melting Pot to celebrate my new job. I love busy and full weekends like this one!
    Next weekend: I'm only able to get home for a few days for Christmas this year, but I plan to make the most of the time! I leave for Maine on Saturday morning. I am really looking forward to seeing my parents and a couple of my close friends up there!

Purchases:
  • This was a total fun buy, but I bought this trivia game this week! I can't wait to play it with friends (and possibly on-air for my new show?). 
  • If you got a reward at Victoria's Secret for shopping there on Black Friday- now is the time to use it! I think it expires soon, or maybe it did this week. Anyways, I used mine this weekend! (Not going to link what I bought there because that might be TMI for a blog- haha! 😂)

Wishlist:
  • I keep looking at these gorgeous heels! I love the colors that they come in, and I think they would be perfect for NYFW. 
  • I seriously never need a winter scarf again (I have SO many), but if I did need one... this one is so cute!
  • I have heard great things about these lip balms- and this holiday set is a great deal on them. 
  • A gorgeous dress coat for holiday festivities. 
  • I've never tried jewelry from Shein... but I do love these earrings. And what an amazing price!

Recipe of the week: Coconut Chocolate Blondies from My Baking Addiction. These were super easy to make, and a perfect weekday treat to snack on!


Song of the week: Got It All by UpsideDown ft. The PropheC. If you follow along with the songs that I pick each week, a lot of times they're international! I love discovering new world music. This week's song is a really fun upbeat pick! (The music video is also hilarious!)


On the blog this week:


    This is the last Midweek Ramblings for 2018- I have my year-end recap blog posts planned for next week!


     God Bless,


     xoxo Annaliese 
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December 18, 2018

Fall/Winter 2018 Q&A.

     I have done a couple fun Q&A's on Instagram Stories lately, and I thought it would be fun to add all of the questions and answers into a blog post! Q&As are some of my favorite types of posts to read on other blogs- I think they are a really fun way to learn more about someone outside of their normal blog posts. The last time I shared a Q&A blog post was actually last winter, so I'm well overdue for a new one!



{Outfit from this blog post}

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training!



     What are your favorite books that you read in 2018? The short answer for now is this trilogy! I actually have a whole blog post planned on this topic for January! I've realized I'm not so great at keeping up with monthly book blog posts, so there are a lot of great reads from this year that I've forgotten to review or feature on the blog.

     What is your favorite state you have visited and why? This is a hard one as I love to travel, but I have to go with North Carolina! The first time I visited (for college visits as a senior in high school) I fell in love and immediately couldn't wait to move there. I loved visiting so many places in NC during the years I lived there, but I still feel like I have so much more to see of that state in the future!

      Are there any shows you've been binge watching lately? Fun fact about me: I don't really binge watch stuff! I'm much more into network TV because it's only one new episode a week- much more my speed. 😂But the show that I have been watching on Netflix lately when I have free time is Friends! I've never seen it in full, and I started it on Netflix last year. Since I suck at binge watching, it's been a whole year of watching it and I'm only on season five!

     Do you regularly attend a church? YES! I was so so so lucky to find my amazing church just six weeks after moving to Charlottesville. I am in a women's bible study group, I was in a co-ed bible study this summer, and as of a couple months ago I began to teach Sunday School twice a month! I attend my church every single weekend unless I am out of town.

     What is your favorite winter shoe currently? I love wearing my Tory Burch riding boots each winter season, but this year since I live back South I've still been wearing these booties a lot! Back in Vermont, bootie season ended in mid-October. But living in Virginia now I get to wear my favorite booties almost year around, just as long as there's no snow!

     Do you have any siblings? I am an only child!

     Where did you get your tan OTK boots? This pair of boots can be found here!! (I received my pair for a blog collaboration, but they are pretty affordable and I'd definitely recommend buying them!)

     What is one of your goals for 2019? To date more! I shared a couple months ago on the blog that in 2018 I took a year-long break from dating apps. While I think this was amazing for me emotionally and gave me a lot of newfound confidence as a single woman, I think that in 2019 it's time for me to start making more attempts to date and meet guys. I've had a lot of anxiety about dating in the past (and still do), and I'd like to become more comfortable with it this year!

     What's something you splurge on? Getting my nails done a couple times a month! Last year I got gel manicures, but this year I started doing dip nails (SNS) and I've never looked back! Here's a blog post all about how much I love dip nails.

     What is your weekly workout and cooking routine like? Such a good question! I'm scheduling a blog post on my editorial calendar for this winter to go over my fitness routine. The short story about that is I struggled since graduating college to find a fitness routine that I enjoyed and looked forward to, but I joined a gym this past September and that has helped a lot! I try to workout 4x a week. As far as my cooking schedule... that's something I need to get better about making into a routine for 2019. In Vermont I was much better about meal prepping and sticking to a cooking schedule! I still love to cook and bake and try usually 2-3 recipes a week, but my cooking isn't on any sort of a schedule, and it really should be again. I'll definitely update next year if I get better at that!
 

    If you have any more questions for me, you can always email me or send them on Instagram! 😊 I love writing these posts. Also- thank y'all for the kind words on yesterday's big announcement! Talk to y'all tomorrow for Midweek Ramblings!


     God Bless,


     xoxo Annaliese

 
     
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December 17, 2018

Life Update: I'M A MORNING RADIO CO-HOST!!!!

     Join me today in celebrating some very incredible and unexpected career news! 😊I'm so excited to finally be able to share this big news on my blog!







Photography by Kate Greer

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training!




     Oh my goodness, I don't even know where to begin!! So much excitement to share with y'all today. Let's just get big news out of the way first: December 26th, the day after Christmas, will be the first day that I am an official morning radio co-host for a brand new morning show in Charlottesville! Finally getting to type that out on the blog and share my news with all family and friends feels UNREAL! I'm also switching radio stations, and I'll now be working for a station with a much bigger signal and presence in the area, so this is a big move! (By move, I mean only a move across the hall! My company owns six Charlottesville radio stations, all housed in the same building.) Now here comes the longer version of the story, and a bit about why this promotion is such an unexpected dream come true!


     Working in radio was my dream since I was just seven years old, but my dream of morning radio began a little more recently. I actually wanted to be a syndicated night show host when I was growing up! I wanted to be just like popular radio host Delilah, whose show is played on AC and light rock station across the country. I loved Delilah so much that I named my cat after her! Anyways, almost two years ago in January 2017, I began a morning radio internship that I needed to graduate from broadcasting school. I interned from January-March 2017 for The MRL Show in Charlotte. Getting to be around morning radio firsthand and watch all of the creative components come together to make a great show was amazing to me. That experience actually changed my mind about my career goal- and my new dream was to be a morning radio co-host! I didn't mind the crazy early mornings... in my mind it seemed worth it to me to be apart of people's morning and wake them up with a smile on their face.

     While I worked in Vermont last year, I had a few opportunities to be a fill-in on the Star 92.9 morning show when one of the co-hosts took vacation (I usually worked for Star on the weekends, and I worked for a different station weekdays). Star was a Hot AC station, AC standing for Adult Contemporary. AC which means that they played a nice variety of pop music, from the 90s, 2000s, and some current pop hits (the fact they did play a lot of current music is why they were called a Hot AC station and not just AC!). Anyways, I loved getting to fill-in a few times on the Star morning show. This was my favorite opportunity that I had while working in Vermont! It just solidified my dream of morning radio even more.

     Being on a morning show is the most competitive job to get in radio. Since I was still pretty fresh out of undergrad and broadcasting school when I was in Vermont, I set a goal for myself to be working on mornings 10 years after I finished broadcasting school, which would be 2027! Ideally, I wanted it to happen before I turned 30, but that was still years away. That's why after being in Virginia for less than a year, and still being less than two years into working full-time in radio, I am in absolute shock that this DREAM HAS COME TRUE!!

    As I wrote above, I will be moving stations for my new job. It's common for companies to own several radio stations in a city, so I'm literally moving across the hall from 92.7 C-Ville Country to Z 95.1! 95.1 is a heritage station, which means that it's a radio station that has been on-air for decades. The two stations that I've previously worked for (both in Vermont and Virginia) were much newer stations, so to move to a heritage radio station is even more exciting with this big news! Z 95.1 is an AC station, similar to Star 92.9 was. I am just thrilled to be working for a station that plays a fair amount of 80s and 90s pop, as y'all know that I adore my throwback music! The best part of all is that I have a wonderful co-host to help share the show responsibilities and make being on-air more fun! My new co-host Marc was already one of my favorite coworkers, and now we get to work very closely together which is just fantastic. I love the whole Z 95.1 team- my new boss and coworkers are just amazing and hardworking people.

    I will also still do one short prerecorded midday show on 92.7, which is the country station I have been working for since I moved here! 92.7 has a new station manager (radio term for manager is Program Director, or PD!) who is great, so I'm happy that I can still be an active force in the radio station that originally brought me to Virginia.


    I shared on the blog in October that at the end of this summer, I thought that work was going to transfer me to other stations that our parent company owns in a more rural part of Virginia. The couple months where that was going on was one of the hardest things I have ever dealt with. Radio is my dream, but I had just started feeling very settled and at-home in Charlottesville, and I couldn't abandon that feeling to potentially move yet again. It was scary, as I didn't know what would happen with my job! Amazingly, everything worked out better than I could have ever imagined. God is so good! I know this new career opportunity is directly from Him.


     If you would like to listen to the new morning show, you can from anywhere that you live thanks to modern technology!! Marc and I will be on-air M-F from 5 am to 10 am EST. Here are a few ways you can listen if you don't live in Charlottesville:

  1. Directly on the Z website: There is a streaming player right on our website- perfect to listen to from your desktop!
  2. Mobile apps: The TuneIn app allows you to stream live radio from anywhere! Just search Z 95.1. 
  3. Amazon Alexa: Ask Alexa to play WQMZ Z 95.1, and she will play the station for you. 


     I can't wait for December 26th, this wonderful news is a better Christmas gift than I could have ever asked for! Thank you for sharing the happiness with me in today's blog post. With the new job and new year approaching, I finally want to start doing more Radio 101 posts again! I'll definitely have lots to write about. 😊(ALSO- I did a pajama themed photoshoot for this announcement since I'll literally be waking people up for my job from now on!! I love the picture that Delilah is in- her little facial expressions crack me up!)






      God Bless,



       xoxo Annaliese

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December 13, 2018

TRAVEL GUIDE: Winter Weekend in Fredericksburg, VA.

     There is something extra fun about traveling somewhere new during the holiday season. I am so intrigued by different local and regional holiday traditions and customs. This year is my first Christmas season as a Virginian, and I knew I wanted to see how this festive season was in more places than just Charlottesville. 

     I was delighted to have the opportunity to visit Fredericksburg, VA a few weekends ago! It was the ideal destination for a holiday weekend getaway, and I'm looking forward to sharing more about that in today's Travel Guide. My friend Caroline came up from Charlotte to accompany me for the weekend, and to help with some of the photography in this blog post! You can probably tell from most of the photos that the weather wasn't the greatest while we were in Fredericksburg. While the cold and rainy temperatures weren't ideal, there are still so many things to do here that it didn't rain on our parade! (Pun intended- as there was a parade while we visited!)



Thank you to Visit Fredericksburg for hosting me for this press trip and providing accommodations and meals. Thank you for supporting the brands and organizations that partner with Southern Belle in Training!



   Travel: 

     Fredericksburg is located at the southern part of Northern Virginia (NoVa), lying between Spotsylvania and Stafford counties. It's 45 miles south of DC, and almost 60 miles north of Richmond, making it easily accessible from both of these major metropolitan areas! It took an hour and thirty minutes to get to our hotel from my apartment in Charlottesville. It was a really nice drive through some beautiful rural areas to get there. If you're visiting from most places in Virginia, Maryland, or the Carolinas, it would be easy to drive to Fredericksburg! If you wanted to have a Northern Virginia adventure but were coming from further away, you'd have your choice of the airports in DC or the Richmond airport. (Route 1 runs right through Fredericksburg- I always get a kick out of other places that have Route 1 passing through, as that comprises the Main Street in my hometown.




     Stay:

     Visit Fredericksburg reserved a room for us at the Marriott Courtyard Fredericksburg Historic Downtown hotel. This hotel was the absolute perfect location for all of hour downtown holiday adventures! The hotel is located on Caroline Street, which is the main street in the downtown area. (I also loved how everything was on Caroline Street, since I was accompanied on this trip by my friend Caroline!) We found the hotel to be very clean and comfortable! Our room had two queen beds, and plenty of space. I must add- this hotel had some of the most comfortable beds that I've slept on in awhile!
      The hotel staff was very helpful, and I have to share this funny story from the trip. We brought leftovers back to our hotel room from our dinner at Orofino, and I figured the boxes of food would be too large to fit into the hotel room ice box. I asked one of the people working at the front desk if they could kindly keep our food overnight in a break room fridge. He said yes without any hesitation! As soon as we got back to our room... I realized I must have been blind. There was a mini fridge in our room that I totally missed!! I'm sure the hotel staff member knew this, but he still was able to store our food without hesitation. 😉 Says a lot about the great service that you'll get if you stay at this hotel!




   Eat:

     I already shared a restaurant guide to Fredericksburg on the blog, but if you didn't get a chance to read that yet, here were my three favorite restaurants:

  1. Foode 
  2. Kybecca
  3. Orofino 



   Play:

   Fredericksburg is a vibrant small city that has a thriving downtown district, as well as many unique historical activities throughout the city itself and its two neighboring counties! Here are the activities that we did during our 48 hour visit:


     *Shop Local: As much as I do love malls, my heart has a soft spot for shopping local. Some of my favorite stores are located in my hometown in Maine, and I adore visiting them each time that I'm home. I also love checking out local stores when I travel, as they're the spots that you can find the most unique souvenirs! Fredericksburg's downtown has a plethora of amazing local shops to visit. Most of them were all decked out for the holidays during the weekend that we were there, so it made shopping an even more fun experience. The four that I recommend stopping by are all conveniently located on Caroline Street:

     Monkee's of Fredericksburg: (Monkee's is a small chain of boutiques across the Southeast! They feature upscale clothing and accessories for women, and carry some of my favorite brands like Tory Burch and Lilly Pulitzer!)




     *Riverby Books: This was one of the most charming used bookstores that I have ever visited! The atmosphere is so inviting and bright- I secretly wanted to move into the store and read forever.




    *Sugar + Spruce: I think this was my favorite store I visited. The decor inside is like an Instagram dream!! (I wanted to take pictures of EVERYTHING.) They sell locally handcrafted soaps and skincare items. My mom loves nice soaps, so I picked her up something from here for Christmas!



     *Antique Court of Shoppes: Visiting this store made me wonder why I don't visit antique stores more frequently! I could've spent our entire weekend just browsing this store. They had so many unique things, and a nice mix of old antique pieces and some newer vintage items from the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s. They sell everything from furniture to jewelry... I even found a display of vintage perfume bottles! Now I'm determined to find some fun antique stores in Charlottesville.




 
     *Tour Ferry Farm: George Washington's childhood home is located just about 10 minutes from downtown Fredericksburg! It's right across the river in Stafford County. While his original childhood home isn't still standing anymore, an accurate replica of it was just built within the last few years. The furnishings in the home are all modeled after those from the time period. When we arrived, Caroline and I first did the self-guided tour of the general grounds. We even got to see the garden on the property, which means that if the fable about George Washington and the cherry tree is true, that's where it would have taken place!
    One reason I really enjoyed the self-guided grounds tour at Ferry Farm because your admission includes use of a tour iPad! There are special videos to play at each spot on the property that you visit, and I found it a really unique and fun way to do a self-guided tour. We did have a tour guide lead us through the replica of the Washington home, he was very knowledgable and I learned a lot of new facts about the Washington family!





    Before leaving Ferry Farm, we stopped by a special exhibit inside of the visitor center. Each December, they host a gingerbread house competition! We browsed this year's entries... I have to say they were really good! The concepts behind each were so creative.




     *Visit The Mary Washington House: If you haven't had your fill of George Washington's family after visiting Ferry Farm, you can continue your historical adventures by visiting the Mary Washington House! This located just a few blocks away from downtown Fredericksburg (we were able to walk there easily from our hotel). George Washington purchased this house for his mother in 1772, and she lived there for her remaining 17 years. During the day that we visited there was a living history demonstration happening, so it was fun to see people around in colonial dress!





    *Walk at Government Island: I love going for trail walks- it's such a wonderful way to add a little bit of time in nature to your regular routine. It was suggested on our itinerary to take a walk here, and I really enjoyed visiting. Since I liked discovering the Government Island in the cold, rainy weather, I can only imagine how beautiful it is here in the sunshine! This is located in neighboring Stafford County. Government Island is an 18th century quarry site that is now a 1.5 mile trail and nature preserve. It's perfect for a brisk walk!



    *Enjoy the Fredericksburg Christmas Parade: This is an annual city event, and happened this year on the Saturday evening that we were there. The parade runs straight down Caroline Street and a few side streets. This is a huge event in Fredericksburg! Beginning Saturday morning (!!), we saw people start setting up chairs and benches for parade watching that night.
    Caroline and I had been out and about all day by the time it go to the parade, so instead of watching it outdoors, we opted to watch it from our hotel room, since it was still pretty cold and wet out. That was the first time that I've ever watched a parade from indoors, and it was very cool to do it that way!



    *Other things to do in Fredericksburg:







  • Visit wineries: Fredericksburg area wineries are apart of the Northern Virginia wine region! There are a number of wineries in the area, including Bacchus Winery, Hartwood Winery, and Wildnerness Run Vineyards (which is located very close to the Wildnerness Battlefield site). 
  • Civil War historic sites: Our historical activities for the weekend were focused on George Washington, but if you're a Civil War buff there is lots for you to do around Fredericksburg! We drove by a number of battlefields and historic sites from the Civil War period while exploring the area. 
  • Downtown walking tour: We were able to visit a few of the places on this list, but you could take a full day are walk to your heart's content to see it all! There is so much vibrant history so close to downtown.

     Caroline and I really enjoyed our holiday weekend in Fredericksburg! I wish that the weather had been better for us, but since we were still able to have so much fun it shows that Fredericksburg is truly a rain or shine destination. The architecture of Fredericksburg reminded me a lot of New England, where I'm from! During a lot of points in the weekend, I'd forget that I was in Virginia and think I was in a historic town in Massachusetts. If you're also from up north, I'd be curious if you'd see the similarities like I did! 



     Have you visited Fredericksburg or Northern Virginia before?


     God Bless,


      xoxo Annaliese



    

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December 12, 2018

Midweek Ramblings.



{Here's my apartment complex covered in snow on Sunday night! Follow me on social media @miss_alk}



Ramblings: 
  • snOw-MG: Wow y'all- I was not expecting the insane storm that Central Virginia was hit with on Sunday! There were only snow flurries when I got out of church, so I continued on with the rest of my plans. I went to brunch (for a fun Instagram collaboration with a restaurant!), and then afterwards the snow still didn't seem that bad, so I headed to get groceries. After leaving the grocery store, the roads were treacherous! The snow was falling so fast that it was visibility on the road was almost nothing. It took me almost an hour to get across town to near where I live. When I was just about a mile from home, I lost control of my vehicle and unfortunately had a car accident. Thankfully, I am okay and my car is okay (the other vehicle did have damage, but the other driver was fine too). That night after I got home, I took an evening walk around my apartment complex to see the snow. We ended up getting NINE inches!! NINE!!!! I didn't think there was going to be more than an inch. This experience was a huge lesson for me and I'm going to take snow in the South really seriously from now on.
  • Great neighbors: My accident ordeal on Sunday left me very thankful for the fact that I have the most WONDERFUL neighbors here in Virginia!! My neighbor Leslie and her husband picked me up from where the car accident happened (it was snowing too much for me to keep driving my car the rest of the way home), and my friend Amy's husband kindly gave me a ride back to my car the next morning. When I lived in Vermont last year, I didn't know a single neighbor that lived in my apartment complex. All of my friends and coworkers didn't live very close to where I did. Had I ever had an emergency up there, it could've been hard to get ahold of someone that I knew close by to help! 
  • Grammy's 2019: My favorite awards show of the year is the Grammy's! A few days ago the nominations for the 2019 awards were released. Something that I was excited about was to see Kelsea Ballerini nominated in a country category! On the other hand, I was a little bit surprised that Ariana Grande was left out of the major awards categories for this year's show. Either way- it should be an exciting year for the Grammy's. Have you seen the nominations yet

Weekend Recaps:
  • Last weekend: I had a work event on Saturday, and also caught up with a couple friends that evening. Sunday brought the snow storm craziness and was topped off with my fender bender- ugh!!
  •  This weekend: Another miscellaneous weekend of fun! I'm really excited to be going to see the Dave Matthews Band concert on Friday night. The band was founded here in Charlottesville, so to see them perform in their home city should be amazing! My friend Lindsey kindly invited me to that show. Saturday will be a mix of different plans with friends, and I'm teaching Sunday School on Sunday morning. 

Purchases: No purchases for myself this week, but I'm very on track with Christmas! 90% of my Christmas cards have been mailed, and this week I also mailed gifts to out-of-state friends who I won't be seeing in person this season.


Wishlist: 
  • These first two things I'm sharing today aren't fashion wishlist items, but two things I'm thinking of buying. As I'm starting to plan out travel for next year I'm realizing that I would really love a pair of noise cancelling headphones! If you have a favorite pair, leave me a comment letting me know!
  • I'm also desperately in need of a good screen cleaner for my laptop! It's gotten awfully dirty and I know I should use a proper cleaner for it. If you have a good brand of tech cleaner or screen wipes to recommend, let me know in the comments of this post. 
  • Pretty sure I NEED this for decorating for Christmas 2019!
  • I saw this chic bodysuit featured in an Instagram try-on haul last week and I can't get it out of my head! So cute for winter nights out. 
  • You can never have too many pairs of stud earrings, and these would be a great stocking stuffer. 

Recipe of the week: Chocolate Peppermint Sandwich Cookies from Southern Living. The recipe for these was in the December issue of Southern Living, and I knew I had to try them. They take a little longer to make than a basic sugar cookie, but overall they're still quite easy. And SO good!! 


Song of the week: Bad Boys by Inna. Spotify just gave me my top songs of the year playlist, and this song was my most listened to track of the year. I am a huge fan of Romanian artist Inna, I got to see her in concert in DC this fall which was amazing! 


On the blog this week:

     Lastly, this week is your final chance to enter this amazing giveaway that I'm doing with other bloggers! You get a few entries just for following me on social media. 😊

$1,000 Nordstrom Gift Card Giveaway

To make your holiday shopping a little bit easier, I've teamed up with a group of bloggers to give you
a chance to win a $1,000 Nordstrom Gift Card!
To enter: complete the steps in the rafflecopter below. The more steps you complete,
the more entries you receive, and the better your chance at winning!
This giveaway runs until Monday, December 17th at 12am PST
Winner will be announced here. Good Luck!
*this giveaway is in no way sponsored by Nordstrom.



     God Bless,


     xoxo Annaliese 

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December 10, 2018

Pink + Gray Outfit + Blog Plans for 2019!

     Fun fact: the pictures in today's blog post were taken way back in October! (As you can probably tell from the green grass and green trees behind me.) Fortunately, this dress is an easy one to transition into winter outfits, so I still wanted to share this look with you today. I'm also sharing today about a fun blog series idea that I'll be launching in 2019!







Photography by Kate Greer

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training!


Dress // Jacket {old, similar here} // Shoes // Necklace {old, similar here} // Purse // Bracelet // Lipstick c/o 



     I think this is the first time that I've ever done an entire outfit of gray and pink, but I'm kind of liking the end result! I think this was a really fun color combo to wear for fall- a bit different than the usual earth tone colors that are popular in fall, but pink and gray still totally works together. I bought this dress at LOFT a couple of months ago and I just love it! There is a subtle leopard print in the fabric, but it isn't overwhelming. This is a perfect versatile fall/winter dress. It's actually what I'll be wearing to my work Christmas party later this week! I'm going to pair it with tights, heels, and a sparkly necklace instead of the pops of pink like I did in this outfit. 

    
     Switching gears- I wanted to share one of my ideas for blog content for 2019! The start of a new year is a perfect time to try something new when it comes to what's on the blog. All throughout 2019, I'm planning to do a different monthly series one day a week here on the blog. This is inspired by the moving out-of-state blog post series that I did last spring! I had so much fun writing those posts, and over the past few months I've realized there are a lot more topics that I'd like to go in-depth on with y'all. I decided Tuesday will be the day for these posts, and each month the topic will change! The first Tuesday series for January will be sharing a tour of my Virginia apartment- I'll share a different room each Tuesday during that month. I already have series topics picked for February and March as well! I'm excited really excited about this! Since this is my 6th year blogging, it's so important to me that I keep challenging myself as a blogger and finding ideas for content. 


     One last note not related to today's outfit or future blog content- thanks to everyone who checked in on me and sent such kind messages after I shared on Instagram Stories yesterday that I was in a weather related car accident! I will share the full story of what happened in Wednesday's post, but for now I am just so touched by everyone who reached out! I'm thankful I am okay and that there were no injuries- accidents are always scary. No blog post tomorrow as having that happen this weekend shook up my schedule a bit, but I'll talk to y'all Wednesday!






      God Bless,


      xoxo Annaliese 
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December 6, 2018

TRAVEL GUIDE: Best Eats in Fredericksburg, VA.

     Last weekend, I had the opportunity to visit and explore Fredericksburg, VA for a press trip! Fredericksburg is a quaint city in Northern Virginia that is very rich in history. It's also rich in many other things... good food and drinks being one of them! Today I'm sharing reviews of the restaurants and cafes that I got to dine at, and next week I'll be sharing a full Travel Guide for Fredericksburg. You'll notice that a lot of these restaurants have addresses on Caroline Street- that is the main downtown street in Fredericksburg, and it's full of great eatery options! (Also a fitting name since my friend Caroline accompanied me on this trip to assist with blog photography!)



Thank you to Visit Fredericksburg for hosting me and making some of the meals featured complimentary. Thank you for supporting the brands and organizations that partner with Southern Belle in Training!

     Eileen's Bakery and Cafe (1115 Caroline Street): If you know me, you know that I can never resist a trip to a local bakery. Blame it on the fact that my first job in high school was at a bakery in my hometown! Either way, there's just nothing that beats homemade baked goods. Eileen's Bakery and Cafe in Fredericksburg has a real hometown feel to it. The bakery is housed inside of a historic church, which was built in the 1800s! There were a variety of tasty breads and pastries to choose from for breakfast. I ordered a butter croissant with tea, and for something sweet I treated myself to a maple shortbread cookie. Caroline and I really enjoyed this spot for a casual breakfast!





     Benny Vitali's (722 Caroline Street): If you're looking for a tasty and quick bite to eat, be sure to stop by Benny Vitali's! They call themselves the home of the "Virginia Slice". Virginia Slices must translate to meaning the largest sizes of pizza ever. Caroline and I split a slice in half... it was so big that just eating half of it filled each of us up!




     Foode (900 Princess Anne Street): Foode was our favorite restaurant that we ate at in Fredericksburg! This is a farm-to-table restaurant with a pretty diverse menu. We ate there for lunch on Saturday. I loved the setting of the restaurant- it was light and airy inside and decorated with a fun modern flair. The food was also fantastic! I had the shaved steak sandwich, and Caroline ordered a Mediterranean chicken dish, which came with hummus, pita and olives. I really enjoyed my sandwich, but Caroline's dish was fantastic. I may or may not have stolen several bites!






     Kybecca (402 William Street): Kybecca was the fanciest restaurant that we dined at in Fredericksburg! Their website describes the restaurant as being a "rustic-chic eatery and bar." Similar to Foode, I loved the ambiance of the restaurant. They are ranked #10 on TripAdvisor for Fredericksburg area restaurants! They do have a full dinner menu but the prices were a bit on the high end ($20-$30), so Caroline and I opted to go for drinks and dessert instead. She had a glass of wine and I ordered the Autumn Sangria. It was one of the best sangrias that I've ever had! We also split a Local Artisanal Cheese Board, and the S'Mores dessert (Neither of which photographed well, but believe me that they were great!). I have never met a cheese board that I didn't like, and the Kybecca s'mores were a really fun gourmet take on a classic treat!




    Orofino (1006 Caroline Street): If you're craving really authentic Italian food, Orofino is the place you need to visit! This downtown restaurant features cuisine from many regions of Italy, and each month they have a special menu with dishes and drinks from a specific Italian region. The region of the month for December was Piedmont, and the cheese fondue that I ordered (pictured below) was from that special menu! Caroline and I both ordered the Spaghetti Carbonara for our main courses. It was so filling that I didn't even come close to finishing it! Thankfully I brought it back to Charlottesville and it was my lunch/dinner on Monday.





     Goolrick's Pharmacy (901 Caroline Street): I saved the coolest and most unique place for last! One of the coolest fun facts that I learned on this weekend trip was that Fredericksburg is home to the oldest continually operating soda fountain in the country! How cool is that? Goolrick's is an old school main street soda fountain and pharmacy. Grabbing a milkshake there was truly like a step back in time! My favorite type of milkshakes are chocolate malts, and the one at Goolrick's was wonderful. They also have a limited lunch menu with different sandwiches!





    It looked like there were many more great Fredericksburg restaurants in addition to the ones that Caroline and I visited. This is definitely a food town! The Visit Fredericksburg website has a whole section on dining that includes information about the places that I visited, and many others!


     Have you ever been to this part of Virginia? I'm looking forward to sharing my Travel Guide with information about the hotel we stayed at and activities that we did- that'll be on the blog next week.


     God Bless,


     xoxo Annaliese


   
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