Guest Blogger: A T-Shirt and Pearls

Hi there! I am Sarah from over at A T-Shirt and Pearls. A T-Shirt and Pearls is a collection of my musings on fashion, decorating, cooking, entertaining, and life in general. I have a little something for everyone, so stop on by and check things out. Hopefully you’ll find something you like and stay awhile. You can also link up with me on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest via my blog.

I live with my husband, Britt, in Richmond, VA. We met while attending Randolph-Macon College and decided to stick around. It was an amazing decision and we love our little home and life in the suburbs of Richmond.

While I have you here, I wanted to share an upcoming event that is happening right near my Alma Mater, in the quaint little town of Ashland, VA. The event is called Deck the Halls and is taking place on Sunday, December 2 from 11-4. I am so super excited for this event and have already gathered a group of girlfriends to go with me. I hope some of you will join us there!

Deck the Halls is a fundraiser for Hilliard House. Hilliard House provides housing and supportive services for homeless women and children (up to age 18) for a stay of up to one year. Their mission is to provide support and services to these families in order to build their capacity to go out and live productively in the community (information from So, in a nutshell, this event is for a really good cause. I encourage you to check out their website to learn more about their programs and ways you can volunteer.

Deck the Halls is an outdoor event on a historic farm in Ashland. The cost of your ticket allows you to make as many fresh Christmas decorations as you can carry! {I have had two third floor apartments in my life and I have learned how to carry a lot, like bags from my fingertips to shoulders…two trips are for weaklings. So, I plan to make and carry a lot of good Christmas decorations!} They will provide you with a variety of fresh cut greenery: pine, cedar, hemlock, fraser fir, holly, nandina, boxwood and more and all of the greenery is from local farms! They will also have bows, wreath forms, wire, clippers, gloves, and anything else you need for your wreath making adventures. There will be garden club volunteers there to help you with your creations incase you are not very crafty, which I am not. While you are there you can visit the warm and cozy Big Red Barn for holiday treats, cocoa, and live music. There will also be pre-made greens and other goodies for sale.

The cost for all of this is only $25 (!!!) but get your tickets now because after Thanksgiving the ticket price increases to $30. Still a good deal, but why not save yourself $5?! For all of the details on this event and to purchase your tickets you can click here. You can also visit the Facebook page for Deck the Halls here.

This will be my first time at Deck the Halls and I am excited to fill my home with the smell of fresh greens all while helping a great organization. Make sure to check back on my blog because I will be posting pictures of the event and all of my goodies I create…hopefully they will be worthy of sharing and not a hot mess! See you soon!

Sarah @ A T-Shirt and Pearls

Flames 231 Meet Up Recap

We had a great turn out at the meet up on Saturday! Thank you to everyone that came out, and a special thanks to Flames 231 for accommodating our group! It was so awesome meeting new faces and having such a diverse mix of food, lifestyle, fashion, and fitness bloggers!


Clockwise from left: Kaytee, Ashley & Jeri, Liz, Conor, Jonna, Valerie, Eric, Ellen, Ann, Carrie, Gabby, Sarah, Kate, Shannon, Brian and Sydney!

It was great seeing so many bloggers, and meeting some for the first time!flames 231

The food and the service was great (especially their homemade hummus!) and it was so much fun connecting with local bloggers from around the state. I’d highly recommend the food here, (gluten free pizza crust, vegan cheese, so many options!) and I’ll definitely be going back soon.

For more recaps on the event, check out some of these great bloggers!

Shannon from Thirsty Richmond

Valerie from Pursuit of Sweetness

Jonna from Naturally Glam

Conor from Dogs of Richmond

Kaytee from Kaytee Lauren

Ashley & Jeri from Fashion Junkies United

If I missed any recaps, let me know!

Thank you all for coming, and thanks to Flames 231 and The Firestarter Group for hosting our event!

Virginia LOVE,

Liz @ I Heart Vegetables

5 Tips for New Runners via Neon Blonde Runner

Greetings to my fellow Virginia friends!!  My name is Katherine and I’m a 3 time marathon runner with a personal best time of 3:26.  I’ve had a fast and furious love affair with running and I am super excited to report that I just registered for my first Boston Marathon in spring 2013.  I blog about my running adventures, travels, and life in Richmond Virginia over at Neon Blonde Runner.

The goal of my blog is to inspire others to dream big and shoot for the stars with their goals.  I just ran my first road race in 2010 and at that time I would have never dreamed about qualifying for the Boston Marathon, but you never know what you’re capable of until you try.  So that’s why I want to give each of you 5 simple tips for getting you started with running…so that you can take off, make it your own and discover what you’re capable of too.

You may recognize me from the October 2012 issue of Outside Magazine! My photo was featured in the article that named Richmond the Best River Town in the nation



5 Simple Tips for New Runners

1)  When you’re starting out, don’t focus on speed.  Instead, just run based on time—for example, decide that you’re going to spend 20 minutes jogging and just set out and relax.  Focus on enjoying yourself and getting a “feel” for it.  I didn’t start to pay attention to speed or pace until I’d been casually jogging for almost a year.  This will take the pressure off of it all.  This is your “me” time, your time to clear you head.  You can gradually increase the length of your runs when you feel comfortable with what you’re already doing.

Once you get into it, running can feel as relaxing as a siesta on the beach


2)  Run with a buddy or a group!  You’d be surprised at how much this makes a difference.  If you know that you’re going to meet someone for a jog, it’ll be much easier to head out the door.

Running with Tappan at the Color Me Rad 5K


3)  Remember that the hardest part of running is getting out the door.  Not many people get super excited before heading out for a jog…but once you get started, the feeling is pretty darn incredible and you won’t regret it.  Schedule a time to go running ahead of time and stick with it—I prefer running before work, otherwise it just will NOT get done.

4)  Go to a running store to get fitted for a pair of shoes.  Running in the right shoes is super important and can help prevent any injuries!  Sources recommend that you replace your shoes ever 200-300 miles.

5)  Track your progress and stick with it for at least a month before you decide to stop running.  Keep a little calendar where you write down how long you ran each day.  Or you can record your progress in an online running diary, such as Daily Mile or the runner’s world training log.  If you stick with it for a month and still don’t enjoy running, then maybe running’s just not your thing…but I doubt that will be the case because you’ll notice such incredible changes in your life, both mentally and physically.

Running is simple, pure, and has added so much joy to my life.  Its benefits will seep into all other parts of your life.

So give it a try!  I am always happy to try to pull new converts along with me!  So if you live in Richmond, let me know and I’ll tell you about some great local running groups.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions:

-e-mail- NeonBlondeRunner @ gmail . com

-twitter- NeonRunnerKat

-Instagram @NeonBlondeRunner

Are you a runner and have some tips to add?  Please let us know in the comments below!


Bests Around The State via My Life, Laughs, & Love

Photo Credit Here (she’s from NOVA!)
Hey fellow Virginia Bloggers (or future residents of VA, or visitors of VA!), I’m Christina and I blog over at My Life, Laughs, & Love.  My blog is a little rambling account of my life and helps me to avoid being an adult from time to time.  I found the VA is for Bloggers through another Stafford, VA blogger & couldn’t have been happier I did – how awesome is it that we have a “base” to refer back to for events & happenings in this beautiful state!? 
So anyhow, let’s get down to the business.
I don’t know about you, but the way to my heart is food. 
So is the way to Nick’s heart (he’s my fiancé).
And the hearts’ of our family members.
And everyone else that I know.
So basically, if you can’t tell this post is going to incorporate lots of info. about food!
When we moved to VA we went through a little break-up with delicious cuisine found in the smaller town Nick grew up in & have since been on the hunt for good food & drink in the area.  Here’s what we’ve found:
Best beer selectionCapital Ale House!  Capital Ale is all throughout VA with locations in Fredericksburg, Richmond, Midlothian, & Harrisonburg & offers an impeccable variety of beers…  They literally have 62 beers on draught and 300 choices in bottled beer.  Can you say beer heaven!?  They also have an ice-lined bar to keep your drink chilled.  Genius.  If this doesn’t get you excited, also know that in Fredericksburg they host Octoberfest in late September & shut down the streets of downtown Fred for drinking, music, & delicious German food.  This year it’ll be held on September 29th & I will certainly be there!
Best ice cream:  Let me just say, I’ve had some good ice cream in my day, but when Nick’s family & I found Wally’s homemade ice cream in downtown Fredericksburg after a day of antiquing we were ecstatic.  I highly recommend the mint chocolate chip (my favorite!), and Nick recommends the death by chocolate.  Both delish!
Best grocery store:  If you have never stepped foot into a Wegmans – get your buns in the car and get to one ASAP!  It is the Mecca of grocery stores.  They have literally everything & anything and it is not only fairly priced, but is always fresh & delicious!  We’ll find ourselves at their restaurant (tip-free might I add!) and/or at their variety of buffets/food bars before grocery shopping (or just as an excuse to not cook dinner).  Love Love Love our Weggies!
Best appetizer/drink specials:  If you’re in the area around mid afternoon/early evening head to Bravo! for amazing food specials.  Y’all, $3.95 bar bites AND $5 drink specials?  Yes.  Please.  Not to mention the food portions at the bar are great and the food itself is yummy!  I wouldn’t recommend eating in the main dining area unless you’re willing to pay up, but this bar deal is unbeatable!  
Best AmericanFirebirds.  Oh my most delicious wood grilled food ever.  I have literally never had anything off of their menu that I didn’t eat every last bite of it’s that good (only after consuming their hot bread & side salad mmm).  Not to mention such a classy ambiance with the openly viewed grill and wine bottle wall!  Love.  We went last year for Nick’s b-day and might have to get back there for this years’!  
Best fun with your food:  If you like to play trivia and enjoy a good deal, get to F.W. Sullivans.  For Real.  Trivia is every Monday at 8pm and food specials are M-F (hello $5 appetizers!).  I recommend the hummus – it comes with a full spread including pita breads, kalamata olives, pepperoncinis, feta cheese, cucumbers, and tomatoes.  For $5 Sullivan’s makes me one happy lady :)  Orrrr you can get there F/S nights for darts & dancing. Take your pick.

Sure there are plenty of other fun things around the area, but if you’re anything like us, your world revolves around your next meal.  Hopefully you’ll take our advice and find yourself stopping off anywhere aforementioned & enjoy it as much as we do!  And be sure to come by my blog to say hi + get to know me just a little more!  

Thanks again for reading
xx, Christina 

Event Annoucement: Charlottesville Meet Up!

Hi friends!

We are having our next Virginia Bloggers meet up in Charlottesville on Sunday September 2nd, at 1:00pm.

We will be meeting at Cafe Cubano, for a late lunch/brunch, so hopefully you can stop by for some food, or even just a cup of coffee! Feel free to bring along a significant other or friend!

(Photo from Cafe Cubano)

We realize this is Labor Day weekend and lots of folks will be out of town, but if you happen to find yourself near Charlottesville, we’d love to see your faces!

Virginia LOVE,
Liz & Sarah

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