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Painting at OriJENals

This weekend my friend Allyson and I finally tried out a canvas painting class at OriJENals in Nashville. I was a little worried about keeping up with the instructor, but it was actually a very relaxing evening of painting.

For $30 (or $15 if you have a Groupon), you get a 2-hour lesson with step-by-step instructions on how to paint a particular piece of art with all supplies included. It may look hard, but anyone can do it. By the end, I felt like a real artist…

And now for the finished product. Not bad huh?

Thanks to this fun night out with Allyson, I am officially halfway through my 101 List (just finished #53 - paint a large canvass). 584 days to go, and still ahead of schedule!

Til next time,

Lu

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Finally, my first CMAFest

Every June, Nashville is invaded by country fans decked out in their cowboy hats and cowboy boots, and they’re all here for one reason - CMAFest. I’ve watched them trek past my office on their way to concerts, parades and meet and greets for five years now, wishing I could follow them. And this year, I finally did.

Since my parents’ birthdays are both in June, I ended up buying the three of us tickets to Friday night’s show at LP Field. Not a bad birthday present if you ask me.

The lineup that night was amazing: Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum, Dierks Bentley, Reba. Of course my personal favorite was Sugarland - they did some hilarious country covers of Britney Spears’ “Baby One More Time,” Cee Lo’s “Forget You” and Destiny’s Childs’ “Bootylicious.” And to make the night even more exciting, Shania Twain made a quick guest appearance on stage. Kind of hard to beat a concert like that for $30!

After the show, we got to enjoy fireworks on our walk back to the car…a perfect way to end the night.

And now I can mark a couple more things off my 101 List - #49: Go to the CMAFest in Nashville and #83: See someone new in concert (Reba & Lady A).

Of course, that won’t keep me from going back again next year. I can’t let them have all that fun without me, now can I?

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The Nashville Rollergirls

This weekend the boyfriend and I went to see the Nashville Rollergirls in action, our very first roller derby. Definitely not our typical weekend affair, but it’s always good to step out of the box and try something new.

After we figured out the game, it was quite an intense experience. The girls were so hardcore - running into each other, shoving each other, pushing each other down - it was awesome. With names like “Hildabest,” “Olive TurmOyl,” “Killah B. Killed,” “Nix and Bruises” (my favorite player) and “Lady Fury,” what do you expect?

If you’re really brave, you can even sit by the track in what they call the “Suicide Lane” where you’re pretty much guaranteed to end up with a skater on your lap. Tanner and I weren’t quite ready for that. Maybe next time…

We still enjoyed the game from our safe seats in the stands though. The first game was the most intense. We were trailing til the very end when we came back and won the game. The crowd went crazy! We won the second game by a landslide - less intense, but still exciting.

All in all, it was an amazing night. It definitely put me in touch with my inner-punk side. Now all I need is a hardcore name. Maybe “Lu Cifer” or “The Ha Lu Cinator.” I’m still working through my options…

For tickets and more information on the Rollergirls, visit their website.

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"Broadway Rocks" the Nashville Symphony

Until last night, I’d never been to the symphony. But thanks to Rush tickets, Tanner and I scored front row seats to the “Broadway Rocks” show for $15. What a steal. (Time to mark #64 off my 101 List - go to the symphony.)

If you’ve never heard of Rush tickets, apparently they sell the open seats for certain shows at the box office an hour before doors open that evening. (Note: call the box office two hours before to see if they’re being offered). It sounds like it’s mainly a weekday thing and not so much for weekend shows, but still, a great deal nonetheless.

And perfect timing too, since my birthday is coming up next Tuesday. I thought this would make for a perfect outing to celebrate with the boyfriend.

Though I don’t have anything to compare it to, I thought it was amazing! The orchestra played while four Broadway singers performed each musical number. They sang songs from Hairspray, Jersey Boys, Mama Mia, Wicked and my personal favorite, Phantom of the Opera. And I won’t ruin the surprise for you, but there’s an amazing (and hilarious) encore treat at the end that you won’t want to miss.

So if you’re free this weekend, check out the Nashville Symphony's “Broadway Rocks” show. You won't want to miss this one!

Special thanks to the Symphony for helping me celebrate my birthday. I’ll definitely be coming back.

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Elephants parade through Nashville

This morning I woke up thinking nothing eventful was going to happen and decided to leave my camera at home to lighten my load. Bad idea.

After getting to the office, I find out elephants would be parading by our office around lunch. Now that definitely doesn’t happen every day!

Apparently it’s a tradition when the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey come to town. They unload the elephants near Union Station, halt traffic and march the elephants down Broadway to Bridgestone Arena where the circus is held.

While it only lasted a few short minutes, it was still exciting to see in person. And thankfully I was able to get a few pictures for you with a point and shoot camera.

Moral of the story - always bring your camera with you. You never know when a parade of elephants will show up.

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