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Wooo-weee. What a whirlwind weekend. It’s amazing how much you can pack into a little more than 24 hours.

David and I did end up going to St. Louis. We made the decision last Wednesday, booked our hotel Friday night, and hit the road Saturday morning. Tired already? Keep up with me.

Friday was busy. (Isn’t it that always the case when you are traveling some place the next day? Or that could just be me…) As I mentioned in a previous post, my deadline to finish looking over the final batch of chapters for a series of review books was this past Friday. I came in early to the office (8:30 a.m., which is early for me) because I knew I had a lot to tackle. Even with coming in and working through lunch, I didn’t leave until 6:45 p.m. But I got it alllll done. Deadline met. Now, I could look forward to my weekend. A quick, fun trip with David. I had earned it.

After hearing Lauren had had such good luck with booking hotels through Priceline, we decided to give it a shot. David was hesitant, though. It’s a bit of a gamble. You don’t get to select a specific hotel — only the area and the number of stars. I convinced him that it was the perfect opportunity to try it out because it was the day before and we were only going to be staying one night. We weighed the pros and cons about staying downtown and staying in an area just outside the heart of St. Louis, like a suburb per say. We went for the latter. We ended up at the Sheraton Clayton Plaza Hotel, (about 15 min from the arch) for $60 for the night!

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Once we got settled, we headed down the street to REI — one of the main reasons we came specifically to St. Louis. It’s an outdoors store that’s set up like the Dick’s Sporting Goods in Overland Park with the two floors, but with Backwoods prices. Too be honest, we were a little disappointed. We were expecting a larger selection of products and for the prices to be a little more comparable to Bass Pro than to Backwoods. We ended up getting hiking boots, though. The same pair even! He got the men’s version with hints of orange and I got the women’s version with hints of purple.

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Don’t they look like glorified tennis shoes? I had envisioned buying the more classic hiking boots that are all leather. I found out those run upward of $280. I wasn’t about to shell out that kind of money. I’m a beginner here. I was even getting a little anxious buying my pair that was $160. The girl I talked to in the shoe department said these would be great for my intended purpose. David and I plan on booking a backpacking trip through REI! We have our sights set on the one that goes through Shenandoah National Park, which is in northern Virginia. It’ll be 4 days long and we’re hoping to travel in September. I hope by announcing this to all of you it holds us accountable and we actually book the trip. :)

Anyways, back to the boots. They are Vasque brand if you’ve ever heard of them (I hadn’t before). We wanted to get our boots with ample time to break them in. It would be a miserable trip if we kept developing blisters!

After making our purchases at REI, we headed next door to The Container Store. Oh. My. Word. Why can’t we have one of these stores in Kansas City? It’s an organizer’s dream. I felt like a kid in a candy shop. They have everything to organize your kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, and office. They had yellow and gray (one of my favorite color combinations) office accessories! Gah. I nearly squealed. I ended up getting just the gray pattern accessories because I couldn’t figure out how I could use the accessories that had yellow in the inside.

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My new office trashcan and pencil holder.

After shopping, we drove around to find dinner. I had one rule: We had to go to a restaurant that we didn’t have in Kansas City. We ended up at Schlafly Bottleworks. Schlafly beer is brewed in St. Louis, so it was a local restaurant, even better.

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David got what I call a very manly dish: sausage and kraut. I would never get this. Ever.

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He loved it and ate every last bit. I opted for the build your own pizza. It had smoked gouda cream sauce, house blend of cheeses (mozzarella, smoked gouda, provolone, jack and swiss), andouille sausage, and onions on it.

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Delicious! He he Don’t mind the bite missing. I forgot to take a picture before I dug in. :)

After that, we headed back to the hotel and I had the opportunity to relax. A luxury I don’t allow myself as often as I should. I read my Self magazine and played on my iPad a bit. What a wonderful trip already — and this is only half of it! Stay tuned for Part 2. I promise there will be pictures of people in the next one. ;) Oh yeah, and that big landmark St. Louis is known for — the arch!

Question for you:
1. Do you have certain rules when you travel to a new city? If so, what are they?

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