Five Gifts for Guys

Here are five Christmas gifts for men.  I never know what to get my guy for Christmas.  These are some he’s already opened and some he will get this Christmas.  When I say guys, I mean men.  It still seems old to call them men.  My 13 year old is almost a man!  Aaaah!

The #5 Gift for Guys is performance shorts that are really casual.  Here are 3 brands my guy has:

This men’s performance flex short has a zip front, flat front performance short for men that is 96% polyester, 4% spandex.  These men’s shorts have two pockets in the back, but one pocket is a zipper pocket.  Then there’s a tech pocket on the right leg that zips as well.  Pockets are breathable mesh, and these Performance Shorts feel like they’re lined with a workout short fabric.  They can look dressed up or they can look like men’s athletic performance shorts.  There are belt loops.  The fabric is so soft, slicky but thick, lightweight material for men’s performance. He can style flexibility based on his day’s activities.

Cargo dress shorts that are actually casual shorts – slicky material that would repel water, but that is not why this guy likes these Gerry Shorts.  Stretch fabrication. These look like cargo shorts, but the fabric is performance style for a rugged lifestyle or for dressing up your guy.  Two zip pockets on the legs and both back pockets are zip closure.  Nice a long for a cargo look.  They have belt loops.  My husband thinks they’re heavy, weighted feeling.  But these are my favorite on him.  They’re not huge, bulky cargo shorts. The flaps are not bulky.  I think they’re a slimming long short that guys like.

BirdDogs Shorts – gym shorts you could wear on a date in New England.  They are expensive though.  #1 reason these shorts are on the list is: They look nice but are slicky lined with boxers.  Don’t restrict movement, boxers don’t get out of place, 4 pockets,

There is no fly or button, but it looks like there is a zipper.  These are very expensive, and my husband has the Extra Large Long, and they’re above his knee.  Great for men below 5’10”.

#4 Gift for Guys is this set of headrest hooks that are for the headrest.  My guy likes his car pretty clean.  They are not shaped like hooks; they don’t protrude down.  These are super sturdy plastic holders for reusable grocery bags, trash bags, and my very own purse.  These hooks help you get organized in your car.  These headrest hooks get the clutter off the back seat.  Gives passengers more leg room by getting back seat clutter off the floor board.

The above video shows how my top five list really work.  There is this thick rubber in the C shape that helps you slide it off with easy elbow grease but keeps the hook on the headrest securely.

A set of two is great because I really just need one from the driver’s perspective.  I would put the other one behind my driver’s head rest so that the passenger could reach behind me to hang the trash bag.

Easily accessible for back seat passengers as well as front seat passenger and driver.

Holds up to 18 pounds but they only recommend 10 pounds.

#3 Gift for Men: Bedside caddy show pic of how many books it really could hold

If your man likes to read a little before bed, this bedside caddy is perfect!  Books or magazines before bedtime, pens, and a notepad can all be kept in this bedside caddy.  The super strong velcro straps hold the caddy with additional weight in its pockets.  It comes in colors, but gray is the one I got. This particular one seems to have too big of a pocket for our needs, but look how much room there really is in this pocket!

#2 Gift for Men:  This is a car seat gap filler.  It blocks all change or coins that fall in-between your console and seat.  Since this cushion is stuffed in-between the seat and console, there is no space for even just one coin to drop in-between there.  I lost my phone down in that gap, and this catch-all would’ve stopped the phone.  There’s a slot that fits around the seat belt base. You squeeze this long piece in-between your middle console and seat cushion  and the front just pushes down further.  I’m comparing these two for $9 to the original Drop Stop for $19.99.  They say if it’s a knock off it’s not the best.  I can attest that there is absolutely no gap.  Comes in cream, brown and black.

#1 Gift for Guys is a periodic table shirt.  We’e been fans of these for years!  They use the letters from minerals and metals? from the periodic table to spell words.  They have Ge N I U S for genius.  There’s Ba C O N for bacon.  Super cute!

Check out my 5 Gifts Under $15 for the Person Who Has Everything video for other Christmas present ideas.

5 gifts for a car guy, husband, college student, teenager

These are gifts for men that my husband has used and reviewed.   None of these items for guys  is sponsored; we bought them all with our money.  I’m sharing five gifts for the man in your life-your hubby, dad, boys…

The video above shows you how they all work and look.

5) This gift is for guys who like to look good while living an active lifestyle…or whose wives want them to look good while living. 

My husband appreciates these mens’ performance shorts because of the fabric.  Me personally, I like the way the shorts hang and the thin material.

Three different brands for three different reasons.  My guy only has one of the expensive one, but it’s his favorite.  This short has boxers already in them so your husband doesn’t have to wear boxers!  Caution though because he’s wearing the XL Long, and they come to the top of his knee.  He’s 5’10”.

These shorts look like cargo shorts, but the material is a dry fit kind of fabrication.  Made for an active lifestyle, they move and groove but can be worn with a nice collared shirt.

These shorts are super thin and smooth.  He likes them because they’re not gym shorts, but they feel smooth like them.  And again this type of performance shorts hangs right and can be worn on a date.

How to Master the Half-Tuck Look: 2 Ways

Here I’m showing you how to master the half tuck look.  When I wear t-shirts or blouses, my mind is battling: do I tuck my top half way in or leave it untucked?  Wearing the half tuck look is more flattering in my opinion.

But pulling off the half tuck can be tricky.  How far do you tuck in a shirt? Which shirts can be tucked in?  How do you achieve a half tuck?   How do I tell if I should not tuck in a shirt?

I have stood in front of the bathroom mirror many times at my church trying to get my half tuck just right.  And with my own trial and errors, I can help you practice how to master the half tuck look.

Disclosure:  I am just sharing with you what I have observed on other people.  You are allowed to tweak my instructions in any way to fit your body style.

If you follow my two methods, you will learn how to achieve a half tuck look that is casual and flattering.  You will master the half tuck look so that you can feel confident throughout your day and not have to check the windows of stores that you walk by to see if the half tuck still looks just right.

Two Methods to Mastering the Half Tuck Look:

First Method: Belt Loop Knuckle Method: Place your fingertips on the button and go out to your hand knuckles – the first belt loop.  Draw up the fabric, tuck just that area in.  Pull out the shirt enough so that it can drape.  So you have a diagonal line right there at your tummy.  We’re tricking the eye…just like the bathing suit companies do with diagonal lines.  If a tummy isn’t your problem area, you may need to tuck it farther across from there.

2nd Method: Button Method:  Tuck in your shirt only at your button.  You’ll grab some fabric and tuck it just behind the button and drape it out a little.  Here is this shirt fully tucked in.

I don’t tuck in my shirts all the way hardly ever because it cuts me right at my middle which isn’t flattering for some mathematical reason I’m sure.  I need the top to elongate me.

Fabric Choice:

It’s a thin 100% rayon material plaid from Target-I’ll link it below.  I wanted to wear it with lower cut jeans and wanted the back to cover my booty. This rayon fabric is golden for mastering a half tuck because it’s made of out rayon.  When I half tuck this plaid shirt, rayon disguises my problem area, helping me to feel more confident with it being half tucked in.  This top puddles instead of poking out.

My 100% cotton gingham shirt pokes out when I tuck it in half way.  With this top I use the Button Half Tuck Method; the only thing about 100% cotton is that it pokes out.  Be Goldilocks when choosing your top.  If you are not 100% confident in that fabric, don’t spend money on it.

Know what u want to look like-not dressy, approachable, sporty, classy, preppy, grunge/lady like, boho, or fancy.  I prefer not fancy; if I wear heels of any kind, then I feel like I’m too dressed up.  I used to feel that way about lipstick too.

T-shirt Choices:

This Mossimo Relaxed V-neck T-shirt, is amazing and does not cling,and it is a good one to explain the half tuck method.  Again, it looks okay untucked, but using the belt loop half tuck method makes it a lot more flattering of a look. I tuck the t-shirt in at my belt loop and adjust it down on an angle. Sometimes I have to tuck it in all the way across if that looks better.  But see how it does not cling?  The Mossimo is loose enough and flowy.  My Radiate Love graphic tee looks fine untucked, but when I half tuck it, my curves are more flattering.

Look at the length of your t-shirt:  Do you have enough t-shirt fabric to pull out if you have tucked in the shirt?  Enough of the t-shirt hangs below my low waisted waist band so that there is enough fabric to pull out and drape after I’ve tucked in the shirt.

Here is my Turkey Trot just as an example of how the half tuck makes the outfit look more pulled together.  And the half tuck is more flattering than untucked.  I have to add a belt with these jeans if my top is more fitted.  The belt helps pull my tummy in, and holds in that little bit of material if that is all I have.

Size up: Try a size bigger with your tops.  Play around with fabric.  Find a blouse in 100 cotton, one with 100% polyester in it, one with rayon in it.  These plaid ones are 100% polyester, they do not cling.  They puddle when I use the half tuck method.  This navy one is not as flattering as my other ones. Untucked, they’re not quite long enough or short enough to be flattering, so I half tucked them in for a more flattering look.

Mossimo and Turkey Trot are 60% cotton 40% polyester.  Radiate is 55% cotton and 45% polyester.

Jeans or Trousers:  Pick your two favorite pairs of jeans or shorts that you feel really comfortable and confident in.  They do go hand in hand because if you’re not comfortable, it’s not really worth wearing or buying that piece of clothing.  I think every woman should invest in a lower rise pair of jeans or trousers.  They’re perfect for a half tuck.  Some jeans say they’re mid rise and they end up inching down to a low rise fit though.  If you are older and scared of skinny jeans, my mother in law has a pair of Chic Classic Collection Women’s Stretch Elastic Waist Pull-On Pant – elastic waist and tapered I would say; very flattering!  I’ll link it below-you can get them on Amazon.

If you’re self conscious of your leg size, go with straight jeans or boyfriend jeans.  They’re so flattering on full-legged women.  And then wear a loosely fitted top or blouse that is tucked in all the way. You want to focus on bringing the eye up to your waist and upper body by skimming the legs to elongate them up. This burgundy t-shirt is more fitted so I wore a looser legged pair of jeans. Sonoma Everyday Tee Brand is 60% cotton and 40% polyester and they are fitted without being clingy.  Here’s one from Target. See how it’s more fitted than the loose jeans?  My skinny jeans do not look flattering because everything is tight except my problem are my tummy.  But when I pair it with looser jeans, belt and half tuck in, look how much more put together it looks.

We want to be real, authentic women with our friends and our spouse and with ourselves.  Let’s stop trying to be something we’re not.  We know that God created us beautifully unique as we are without clothes.  God also gave us a personality and creativity and I express my creativity and personality through clothing most days.  But I know before I get dressed that I’m beautiful and enough just like I am regardless of the clothes I’m fixing to put on.  So, part of getting dressed is being armored with truth in our minds about who we are and how worthy we are as is.

Now, when you are picking apart an outfit that you’ve put together, you can only critique the outfit, not you as a person.

Now What?

First look at an outfit you.  Investigate what it is that looks good?  Is it that you can see your waist more?  Your legs are more flattered in that outfit?  Your shoulders look really feminine?  Your collar bone looks great?  Your neck?

Look at an outfit that has jeans or pants whichever you wear most often.  Those pants will go with several shirts.  You know if you want to look cute, you can always pair something with these jeans.  Your go-to jeans.  These darker wash jeans are called Miracle Body and are pretty high-you can see that the Radiate Love top looks fine untucked.  But I think this top looks better half tucked into jeans with a lower rise.

I’m a fan of the half tuck on an angle.

Now, in order for a style technique to be practical, you need to know how to pull off a half tuck with your eyes closed.  When you’re at the mall or church in the bathroom style, you don’t want to have to walk out and stand in front of the crowded mirror trying to get that half tuck just right.

So practice your half tuck while you’re at home.  Untuck your shirt, go about for a few minutes.  Go to a different mirror in your house and do the half tuck again.  After probably 10 times, you’ll feel more natural.

Remember that we don’t want to make our lives all about “how do I look now,” and five minutes later, “how do i look now?”  We are confident in our beauty on the inside; we’re armored mentally with truths about who we are and whose we are.  We belong to the King of the universe.  We are worth it, even if we wear a paper bag throughout the day.

So, getting dressed isn’t about proving our worth to someone else.  It’s about quick, convenient, smart dressing with clothes we have in our closet or that we can buy…clothes that flatter our body shape and personality style.

Huge Review of Hearth & Hand With Magnolia

Chip and Joanna Gaines launched their new line at Target stores called Hearth & Hand With Magnolia.  I’m very proud of them for bringing HGTV’s Fixer Upper to an end.  Now we can get their vibes by going on a Target run.  I am sharing a huge review of Hearth & Hand With Magnolia.  I’ll show you what I bought online, what I like and what I did not like from their new line.

The video above will take you to the YouTube channel, and you can see all links there.  EEEEK, it’s so great, but I didn’t like everything…

How to Pack With Packing Cubes – I’ve Changed My Method

We want to pack efficiently in our packing cubes, and if you follow this method, you will fit 10 outfits in two packing cubes for your carry-on suitcase.  I normally roll my clothes and raved about it in my last travel video, but I have learned how to pack in packing cubes that will save time and save space in my suitcase.  I didn’t believe it, but this is the best method.

Most people I’ve heard from use packing cubes for organization.  Whether your travel suitcase needs organization, or if you just like to pack in sections, then you should try a set of packing cubes.  I’m traveling in the Fall for a week, so I need layers as well as boots!!!  It’s sweater weather!!!

Cubes come in dimensions for a regular mother lode suitcase amount.  But I only travel with a carry on suitcase.  In my former test and review of rolling vs packing cubes, I used only the biggest one.  And that one is designed if you had a whole other section in a huge suitcase you would check curbside.

I’m packing my gingham shirt with a navy cardigan, but it can also be worn with a burgundy cardigan.  I can wear it out or tucked in.  So I am folding each piece the length of the cube.  The other top that goes with either cardigan is the long sleeve heather gray top.  I prefer to wear these tops with skinny jeans that I wore onto the airplane.

But I have another pair of jeans in a lighter shade for a couple of days.  The jeans will not go in a packing cube; they’re going to drape over the entire suitcase when I’m done.  So I’m folding a graphic tee that will also go with the burgundy cardigan.  This should fit in one cube.  In my former video, I didn’t need to bring boots.  But this time of year and the winter, I need boots.  They really do take up so much room so I had planned on only taking these booties, but since I’ll be walking outside and my ankles need more warmth, I decided to take my boots.  I also have some tennis shoes that I could travel with.

I’m also packing my other plaid shirt.  Love this one for a preppy day and with boots.  But I can also wear it out with the long navy cardigan and be fine.  Have any of you bought Mules this year?  I have some from my junior year of high school (1989) that I can take along in my back pack if it’s hot on the plane.

I’m making a travel outfits video in the future so stay tuned for that.  If y’all have any travel questions, leave me a comment below.

I also pack this b jacket because it will go with the gray t-shirt in the other cube, as well as this olive green top.  Look how this olive top changes when I pair it with a burgundy cardigan.

I’ll pack undies in my shoes or in one of them and my spare, hanging by threads bra.  I so need to get a new one…don’t we all?

Once I have my folded clothes in place, then I stretch each packing cube to fit one shoe in each cube.  I start the zipper, squish, zip some more, squish, and zip some more until I have a misshapen cube.  You can even roll a piece of clothing to squish in there.

Then I try lying them flat or with the handles up.

Then I add my curling iron, shoes, and lay the jeans on top.  A hoodie goes in the outer pocket in case I need to have a blanket or squish it up like a pillow on the flight.

The best travel tip of all when packing is to mix and match.  And to wear your heaviest shoes on the plane so they won’t take up space in your carry on suitcase.  But the best part of packing in packing cubes is for when you arrive at your final destination.

Some travelers keep all their clothes in each cube inside hotel room drawers.  Others unpack totally upon arrival.  Where are you going next?  Have you tried cubes yet?

I started with this cheap bundle of packing cubes, and I’m happy with them.  But this will be only my second trip with them.

I seriously never thought I’d change from the rolling method, but now I’m a believer!

Have you been to Fixer Upper’s Magnolia Market Silos?  I made a video about what to do after your visit if you’re interested.  Thanks so much for POPping over!

Let’s be friends on Instagram or Facebook sometime.

Target Run: Review of the New Fall Line

On my recent Target run for candy corn, I spied the new Fall Women’s Clothing line called “A New Day.”  There are some gorgeous styles in this new collection.  Target has new styles while on a budget.  I think that’s why everyone has fun on their Target run.  In the above video are the pieces I kept from the clothing line A New Day.  You will see what made it out of the dressing room and what had to stay.  I’ll also show you what else jumped into my cart.

In the video above, you will find the links to what I did keep and the free shipping code from Oct 22-28.  The video gives you much more detail too about the adorable finds that I am keeping.

target-run-review-check-out-screen
My Checkout Screen hahaha

 

Watch the video above to see what I did keep!!!  They’re so cute, pretty and fun!

I am returning this light pink velour top.  I already have a Burgundy velvet top as well as the navy one I’m keeping.  I think it would look great with a pencil skirt. Details along the neck line and sleeves are high quality. The best part is it’s not see through!!!  Thank you Target!

target-womens-new-day-clothing-line-pink-velour-top
Watch the video above to see what all I DID end up keeping after my Target Run.

I loved this asymmetrical ruffle skirt, but the fit was bad.  It was too small even going up a size.  Gorgeous red though.  I didn’t keep the floral cardigan because I don’t prefer that length on me.

Speaking of length, this gorgeous rust colored poncho was just too long.  And having no sleeves allows glimpses into my love handles; I just prefer sleeves.

womens-poncho-new-day-target-too-long
Too long and no sleeves; if I don’t love something, I should not spend the money.

Y’all, the Target styles from A New Day that I kept can be seen on the video above.  I love them!!

I did buy one of the Women’s A New Day crew neck shirts because of their non-clingy properties.  I cannot wear the Merona tees or Mossimo tees because they cling too much to my tummy area.  This is a medium so I did size up.  Love this color; just not the v-neck. This Target brand shirt feels more like 100% cotton; it has just enough stretch in it without being clingy.

v-neck-womens-new-day-polka-dot
A little too plunging of a v-neck but love love love the colors!

This striped pullover almost jumped ship into my cart, but I just don’t need it here in Houston.  I like illusion of a smaller waist this gives.  I also think the threads are a bit too loose for quality sake.

I should’ve brought home this plaid shirt.  A New Day’s Any Day Plaid hangs perfectly and is well made.  You cannot see through this fabric.  It tucks in with the perfect draping.  But I bought a different one that you can see in the video.  So this one stayed at Target.

target-womens-clothing-new-day-plaid-dressing-room
Love the juxtaposed pattern on the pockets. Perfect draping fabric.

womens-new-day-plaid-shirt-juxtaposed-pattern

Thank you for visiting!  Leave me a comment on my YouTube Channel if you want me to create a video about Tucking in Tops vs Untucked.

I’m just a message away, but you can also find me on Instagram and Facebook.

I occasionally use affiliate links, but all opinions are my very own.

Visit Woodstock, VT: Eat, Sleep, and What to Do

 

Woodstock, Vermont is, I’m convinced, where the term charming came from!  The village of Woodstock, Vermont was a gift from New Hampshire back in 1761.  And it will be a gift to you when you visit Woodstock.  If you visit the old wooden red bridge, the Taftsville Covered Bridge, Taftsville is part of Woodstock.  Viewing and photographing the Taftsville Covered Bridge has room on the side of the street for about five cars to park and jump out to take a pic.

My YouTube video above gives you much better explanations of what to visit in Woodstock with many pictures that are just beautiful!

taftsville covered bridge red wooden Woodstock Vermont
Taftsville Wooden Covered Bridge

After snapping pics of the Taftsville Covered Bridge, keep going six miles on 4 East to the Quechee Gorge Gifts store, park there and walk to the middle of that bridge to view and take tons of pics of the Quechee Gorge.  You can easily do this with a wheelchair as well.  If you want to hike down the gorge, its entrance is right behind this Quechee Gifts store.  There’s a huge parking lot and it’s maybe a 100 foot walk on a sidewalk to the middle of the Quechee Gorge bridge.  Quick stop and worth it!

There is a Quechee Ski Club near there so it’s not in the middle of no where.

But Woodstock is where I want to stay and live!  We stayed at The Shire Woodstock, a five minute walk to the downtown “oval” of Woodstock.  Think town square tightly cozied up together.  The Shire Woodstock is an inn on the Ottauquechee River so you have a table and wicker chairs from the back deck of your room to view it.  The Shire also has a grassy area near the river if it’s warm enough for you to hang out there.  In the front of each room is a main street view with white rocking chairs.  Almost everyday you have The Shire Woodstock gardener watering his flowers; he will even let you pick his grape tomatoes-he said they’re free.  They’re right in front of the check in office.  We shared a king bed and SIX pillows!  Such a lovely sleep.  However the bathroom does not have a vent fan; but it does have a little window.  Felt kinda humid.  We highly recommend staying at The Shire Woodstock if you are visiting Woodstock.  You are very close to town and right across the street from the little market.

white rocking chairs in front the shire Woodstock
Cozy setting at The Shire Woodstock
the shire Woodstock Vermont
Three minute walk down Main Street in this charming village

I can recommend the Mont Vert Cafe for coffee.  I saw a local Woodstocker who brought her own sliced tomatoes to add to her breakfast sandwich.  We just happened to visit on National Coffee Day to receive our 50 cents off.  They have a lovely downstairs as well as an entire upstairs for seating.  And if weather permits a brick patio right out front.  Pedestrians can easily get around town because of the patient Woodstockers.  Tourism puts bread on their lovely tables so they are gracious.

mont vert cafe coffee shop
Delicious coffee, roomy seating and locals eat here.

Parking in downtown Woodstock is free before 10 am.

We ate breakfast at Mountain Creamery.  They serve breakfast and lunch and downstairs is where you can get ice cream.  My mom and I split a Maple Sausage Apple Cheddar omelet, and look how perfectly melted the cheese was.  I recommend getting your own because it’s so good.  Now the toast had to be homemade!  It was dense and had a sweet wheat taste-not a bland taste.  They bring you a little shot of their strawberry jelly, which I’m sure comes from Sugar Bush Farms.  I wanted to take a bath in this strawberry jam or jelly!  Sweet but not too sweet; not too thick and spreadably smooth!

maple sausage omelet breakfast mountain creamery
Maple sausage, apple, and cheddar cheese omelet

The Middle Covered Bridge is right there in the oval downtown of the village of Woodstock.  Great pics there.  There’s a foot path crossing attached to the bridge-wheel chair friendly.  You can see Adirondack chairs along the creek underneath. Ottauquechee River (babbling creek) runs underneath this and through Woodstock.

middle covered bridge Woodstock Vermont
Middle Covered Bridge – pretty much attached to the town square oval

 

Highly recommend Sugar Bush Cheese and Maple Farm.  Vermont is the highest producer of Maple Syrup in the United States at almost a million gallons per year.  Awesome tasting samples as you come in to the shop formed in small groups.  Very strict ladies ushering you to squeeze in and get samples from approximately 5 different cheeses.  But it’s a very tiny area so squeeze together and obey.   Yummy!  Then you get to taste maple from their actual Maple Trees on the Sugar Bush Farm.  There are new Maple Syrup grades for depth of flavor.  You get to taste all four grades.  They have a tiny shop where you can get the grade you want.  Your shop guide will give you like a score card so you can check with cheese you liked. They would not ship my cheese to Houston Texas until November, so I just will order online.  If you want it shipped from the store, they just would hold off on delivery until mid November.  And shipping from the store seemed like a lot of work for them.  Like I was inconveniencing them.  They’re so busy and shipping is all done by paper work.  I just recommend taking a pic of what you want and ordering them from your laptop.  Oh, the cheese and the maple syrup was so delicious.  They have quite a few tasters in another room – like mustards and tiny oyster crackers for spreadable cheeses.

The most time you will spend at Sugar Bush Farms is a little over an hour.  You can walk around their Maple Tree area-short distance and venture up to their chapel – kid friendly rocking horse inside.  You can also see the tubes where the maple would travel.  There are little facts nailed to trees.  Fascinating process for making Vermont Maple Syrup.  It’s not super wheelchair friendly because it’s outside on the dirt, and the shop is so tiny.  But it can be done.

When you pull out of Sugar Bush Farm, go left and keep going left to meet up with the Taftsville Bridge.  If you don’t have the Google Maps app, download it for free.  You type in the store name if you don’t have directions, and it will lead you there.  For example, as we were leaving the Sugar Bush Farm, I typed in Taftsville Covered Bridge and we found our way there.

Don’t miss this farm.  It’s not just a farm, it’s a gorgeous view with local samples galore.

Ruth’s Table was a farm to table style bistro restaurant.  I had the schnitzel chicken with a caper sauce on top of garlic mashed potatoes.  Sauteed zucchini with it.  Melt in your mouth with just the right amount of tang to it.  My mom got a piece of salmon on top of a risotto that was creamy good.  Loved how quaint but fun its decor was.  Felt like I walked into the Old Yankee Workshop because of all the beautiful wood in Ruth’s Table.  Again, it’s directly on the main street going through town.  Hard to read the words on the door.  Such fabulous, made to order food.  You MUST eat here.

I wanted to go to Soulfully Good Cafe, but they weren’t open for supper.  They have these white wrought iron table and chairs out front.  Adding to the charm of Woodstock Vermont.

Red Rooster at The Woodstock Inn is just as pricey.  It’s a way to see the inside of the inn.  Beautiful grounds but you don’t have the river view.  It’s smack dab in the very middle of the oval downtown, but like The Shire and The Woodstocker B&B, The Charleston House, are all right down there too.  But The Inn is breathtakingly beautiful.

woodstock inn resort vt
Woodstock Inn – beautiful but no river view – in the downtown oval, but most everything is.

I hope these tips help you figure out what to do in the village or shire of Woodstock Vermont.  POP over again soon!

Other videos you may enjoy:

Cruise Tips

Which Packing Method is Better?

4 Things You Must do in Portland, Maine

 

4 Things You Must Do in Portland, Maine

We just visited Portland Maine and I have four things that you must do while touring.  All of the hubbub happens in Old Port.  It’s got a lot of modern, hip tours and lobster rolls to try too.  We even saw the Royal Caribbean Anthem of the Seas cruise ship docking in Portland, Maine.  Do not miss the views in Portland, Maine.  POP into my video and I’ll tell you four gorgeous and delicious things you must do in Portland, Maine.

Lobster Roll

If you ask 20 people in Portland where to get the best Lobster Roll, you will get 20 different answers.  A local Portland friend named Tarilyn recommended Scales in Old Port, Portland – upscale in price not in dress.  Wear what you want-you’re in a fishing port.  But for the most part, it’s business casual at night.  MAKE RESERVATIONS!!!  This place is a local favorite.  My seared scallops and seared bacon chunks in a poblano corn sauce was to die for and was $30ish and came in a big black skillet.  My mom got the whole lobster, which they do all the work to help you dig in easily.  We also got fried cauliflower; it was too thickly battered but still delicious.

Bite Into Maine has 3 locations – Portland Head Light Lighthouse, an airstream by the Allagash Brewing Co and their own brick and mortar store opening soon. Lobster Roll sometimes has mayo lightly mixed into the lobster meat and sometimes it’s not.  We found them by the Portland Head Light Lighthouse.  Food truck right there by the three huge parking lots.

Pro:  several large parking lots.  When you enter the park (free), keep going to the right and you’ll see it in-between the three parking lots.  You can choose several different options in how it’s prepared for you.  You have to watch my video above to see really HOW MUCH lobster is in one roll!

Con: can’t sit inside anywhere if yucky weather

Picnic style is no mayo and on top of mayo based slaw in a folded piece of huge Texas toast. Warm, melted butter drizzled all over it!!!!  My fave style!

Curried mayo

Chipotle mayo

mayo

dollop of mayo with a jalapeño

Lobster Shack – At Two Lights Lighthouse.  Only parking for about 20 cars unless you drive back up the hill two houses and park in the little parking lot that’s there.  The port authority worker told us that this place wins the best lobster roll every year.  I could not find that stat anywhere though.

Portland Lobster Co – where all the other shops and cruise ships park, this is in Old Port, the hubbub of Portland, so while you’re here you might as well check it out.  When we did a drive by, people were standing shoulder to shoulder inside.  They do have a dock.  Just if it’s yucky weather, you may have to wait a while.

Honestly, you’re going to have fresh lobster so it depends on what you want.  Do you want a quiet and beautiful view?  Got to the food truck Bite Into Maine at the Portland Head Light Lighthouse.  If you want views and ability to sit inside, Lobster Shack.  Don’t care and no car?  Portland Lobster Co.

Take a Tour

Y’all this is the most bang for your buck when visiting a town like Portland, Maine.  You will be so glad you tried it.  You pick the tour.  Here’s a list from their site, but check dates because winter time tours are limited.

http://www.mainefoodietours.com/Portland.html

Maine Foodie Tours allow you better choices for your family to tour.  You can even choose the type of tour-just happy hour, art tour, lunchtime lobster crawl tour, culinary tour and many more! We are huge fans of food tours over in Europe.  Maine Foodie Tours, like other food tours, give you the quirky facts of that restaurant, that food, and that area.  Your guide also can give you his/her tips on individual questions concerning touring because he/she is a local. 

Ours was $60 for 3 hours of food!!!  Don’t forget some cash to tip the guide.  You’re going to want to tip him fyi because they end up being lovable and so friendly!  They have a lunchtime lobster crawl tour!  WOW!

For example, I had heard to go to the observation tower up Munjoy Hill.  Asked our guide about it, and Avery gave me an ever better idea.  Plus how to get there most easily if driving.  And the food samples will fill you up!!!

Portland, mainly is the Old Port area.  That is a half a mile MAYBE.  Old Port is a 4 by 20 block rectangle. 

It was 68 degrees, and I still needed a cardigan if just standing still in the shade fyi.  If you’re going to be on an open air truck, dress with warm layers!!!  Chilly at almost 70 degrees!

East Promenade

Take Uber or drive or tour to East Promenade.  You will not be disappointed unless it’s completely fogged in.  And go in the afternoon when the sun will be behind you, making the water seem bright deep blue.  Gorgeous views, plenty of free parking for RVs, cars and bikes.  Take the kids; there’s a playground.  There are several open fields and a little history monument spot.

It’s a great spot to get a quick walk in for some fresh air and jump right back in your car.  It’s also a great spot to just take a nap on a towel.

Go east on Congress, up the steep hill and just keep going.  It’ll dead end into the huge, expansive East Promenade.  You will pass the look out tower, but hardly any parking is there because you can get to it via foot traffic.

Lighthouses

Two Lights Lighthouse: You can see the Two Light Lighthouses, but they’re just okay.  And we only could find one of them; maybe the other one has a light but not in the stereotypical house?

Portland Head Light Lighthouse in Fort Williams Park – ample free parking, quick 15 minute drive from Old Port, great for pictures.  Aaaand they have Bite Into Maine lobster rolls!!!

Con: Port-a-Potties.  Ick!  Yuk!  I was so disappointed!  But the ocean and lighthouse views were one of the most photographed places.

Some travel videos you may like:

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Fixer Upper Magnolia Market Trip Ideas

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I use affiliate links sometimes, but all opinions are my honest ones.