Travel Tuesday: 10 Reasons to Stay at Homewood Suites by Hilton

I can totally understand why Homewood Suites by Hilton’s tagline is “Be at Home”. I had not stayed in one before (I am not sure why that is), but I was so pleasantly surprised and wowed by the amenities, space and comfort of home during my trip to Charleston last week. I found that many travelers, who need an extended stay, choose Homewood Suites. Not only do they offer great value, a tremendous amount of space and fully equipped kitchens, there’s so much more. I thought I would share 10 reasons to choose Homewood Suites for your next travel stay.

1. Incredible spacious studio, one and two bedroom suites. The bathrooms and showers were huge, and the sheets were SO comfortable. I even asked if I could buy some :).

2. Each suite has fully equipped kitchens with microwave, full-size refrigerator, dishwasher, double burner, toaster, coffee maker and place settings and utensils for four people.

3. Complimentary grocery shopping service. How cool is that? I want to move in!

4. Complimentary daily full hot breakfast and evening dinner with drinks every Monday-Thursday. Healthy and gluten-free options are offered as well.

5. Complimentary high speed internet in all suites. There’s also a lodge and meeting rooms if you need some type of meeting or party space or even a spot to do your favorite workout video.

6. Swimming pool, grills and fitness center that is open 24 hours a day.

7. They have a 24-hour service convenience store and complementary laundry.

8. Great work space with a super comfortable desk chair (I wanted one).

9. The most friendly and passionate staff I have seen in a long time.

10. Because, honestly, you will feel just like you are at home.

Healthy Tailgating Recipe: Panko Roasted Drumsticks

As I mentioned last week, football is just kind of big around here during football season. Each week, we rotate going to friends’ houses to watch the game or head to the games (if we are lucky enough). I have such a great time coming up with creative ways to make tailgating (and game watching) a little healthier, so everyone  doesn’t feel so stuffed (and guilty) when the games are over. These Panko Roasted Drumsticks are definitely one of my new popular crowd pleasers. They appeal to adults as well as kids, and they are so simple to make. Your guests won’t believe that this recipe is a “lightened up” version of one of their favorite party foods.

Need a Getaway? Rosemary Beach, Florida

Last week I went on my first nonworking vacation in a long time. I chose one of my favorite spots to take the kids: Rosemary Beach, Florida. It’s a spectacular community that is great for anyone: families, couples, girls trips, guys trips and retired people. The town is adorable, filled with cool architecture, eclectic shops, galleries and wonderful restaurants. Can you say white sand? It’s breathtaking.

From the shopping to the food, there is something for everyone. I couldn’t include them all,  but I thought I would share a few. Gigi’s is an adorable spot with incredible unique toys and baby clothes.

The restaurants in Rosemary are fantastic and diverse. They really have covered the bases: family-friendly restaurants, casual dining, tapas and chocolate fare to fine dining. One of our child-friendly favorites is Cowgirl Kitchen which serves anything from nachos to healthy salads and great pizza (ideal for kids).

My favorite adult restaurant is Restaurant Paradis which has anything from Oysters Rockefeller to the best Ahi Tuna I have ever had. It’s romantic, fresh and divine all in one.

The kids have plenty to do in Rosemary Beach from pools to awesome beaches and plenty of bike riding. Rosemary even has a well organized kid’s camp to give parents a break. Mine were particularly fond of the very famous Sugar Shack and newer New Orleans Snow Balls where they had so many incredible flavors (even pomegranate).

Leigh enjoyed it just slightly. That smile never lies…

Rosemary’s newest addition happened to be one of our favorites. The Hidden Lantern is an old-time English style book store. The layout and books are amazing. Honestly, you could sit and read all day long.

The book store has children’s events for different ages, and a great spot for other events as well. We bought three books and one card as gifts, and we almost didn’t make it out to the beach the morning we stopped in there.

What I really love about Rosemary is that when you come, you really don’t need to leave very often. With great running paths and trails, tennis courts, pools, great workout facilities, Aveda Spa and more, everything is so close and easy to get to (no car needed). Bike riding is huge, and I love this shot of all the bikes parked one morning right in front of the beach walkway.

I highly recommend a vacation at Rosemary Beach. It was a wonderful getaway.

Rosemary has a lot of great events coming up including Rosemary Uncorked in October, writing festivals, girls getaways and more. For more information see Rosemary, see http://www.rosemarybeach.com/