Photo Friday | NOLA Getaway

Sometimes, the best vacations don't require traveling out of the country for over a week. This week, I was able to take a short vacation to New Orleans, and had a blast celebrating my birthday while getting a little break.

I enjoyed exploring, visiting new restaurants and businesses, especially ones I follow on social media. The Louisiana summer was in full force, from the unwavering sun to the heat and humidity, to the surprise rain showers that lasted all of 10 minutes. But it didn't stop me from leaving the car parked most of the time and walking where we wanted to go. And then there's the gorgeous summer sunsets that paint the sky pink. When you have those, you find a rooftop bar to hang out at.

Peche Seafood Grill is an award-winning new restaurant in the Warehouse District, and we visited there for my birthday dinner following a recommendation from an Instagram friend. We tried the smoked tuna dip, seafood salad, crab & jalapeno capellini, and smothered catfish. It was one of the best dinners I've ever eaten, and we enjoyed getting to dine with one of my really good friends and her husband. Peche uses fresh, local ingredients, and even share their farm information on their website, so you know where the food comes from.

One one of my morning walks to Willa Jean, I discovered this narrow, partial-brick, tree-lined street, and instantly felt like I was staring down Beacon Street in Boston. It's amazing how no matter how often you visit a city, you can find new gems every time you go. Side note, I'm ready to go back to Boston!

I stopped in to Ellen Macomber Fine Art and Textiles because I love her use of this New Orleans map print, and I was excited to see that she uses organic cotton and eco-friendly inks in her textiles and apparel, plus she recommends washing everything in chemical-free detergent.

Magazine Street is one of my favorite spots to just park the car (not in a freight zone though!) and walk around browsing in different shops. I visited Green Serene and Branch Out, which happen to be across the street from each other. Both shops focus on sustainable and eco-friendly goods. Green Serene had a lot of options by environmentally dedicated and responsible brands, and Branch Out had more of a combination of those brands and vintage goods.

I unfortunately visited Hattie Sparks a few days after my birthday, or I would have treated myself to this eco-friendly confetti. While confetti is festive and beautiful, it's also litter, plain and simple, especially if it's made of mylar or metal instead of paper. These confetti push pops contain bits of seed paper, so if you let it explode in the yard, you'll eventually see flowers grow! I mean. How awesome!! I believe they also suggest reusing the package after to make a real push pop.

Until we meet again, New Orleans.

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