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Adventures in Massachusetts

by Courtney on March 27, 2011

Well, after yesterday, we’ve got a new state to cross off our list

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Massachusetts!

We headed out mid-afternoon for what we thought was just going to be some outlet shopping.

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Jay and I usually try to hit up the Lee Outlets at least a couple times a year. We realized the last time we went was back in September, so we were due for another trip.

Our first stop was into the Nike Outlet. I hadn’t anticipated buying anything in here, but there were some good deals, and you know I can’t pass up a good deal… Winking smile

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This men’s sweatshirt was on clearance for $11.48…ummm, yes please! I also picked up another pair of warm-weather “cozies” and some new running gear. Before I know it, I’m going to have to start training for my first-ever 15K…the Boilermaker! Surprised smile

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Our next stop was in to Harry & David!

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We actually used to have a Harry & David’s in our mall but it closed a couple years back. We both decided that’s probably a good thing.

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I was psyched to see that they were sampling some limited edition flavored Moose Munch. I gladly helped myself to one three. Winking smile

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The Cherry Vanilla was my favorite. SO GOOD!

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We ended up leaving the store with a few fun goodies…

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YUMM!!

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In order to keep my wallet from completely emptying, I decided to forego a trip into Banana Republic, and since I didn’t really find much anywhere else, we called it a day.

As we were walking back to the car, I happened to make a comment along the lines of “Oh, I wonder how far away Trader Joe’s is from here?”

Expecting an eye roll, Jay told me to plug it in to the GPS and then followed it up with a “Sure, let’s go!”

REALLY?!?!?!

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I think I fell in love all over again after that.

We made sure to stock up on a few goodies that we can only get from TJ’s…clearly, we are healthy. Disappointed smile

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By the time we left TJ’s, it was almost 5:00 and we were starving. We debated on heading back towards home and eating dinner there, but then we figured it would be much more fun to keep the adventure going and find somewhere new!

So we both scrambled on our phones to see what was close and ended up a short drive down the road into Amherst, MA. We were both totally loving how cute of an area it is!

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So many little shops and restaurants…I could definitely live near a place like this. Actually, I want to live near a place like this!

So once in a blue moon, I get a really strong craving for a burger and a beer. These are rare, but when they strike, Jay makes sure to jump on the chance! Luckily, we found somewhere that fit the bill.

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The Amherst Brewing Company is a full-service brewpub located in downtown Amherst. It seemed like a pretty popular spot!

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After scoping out the beer menu, I decided on a Honey Pilsner while Jay wound up with a Corim Irish Red. My Honey Pilsner was crisp and light, with just the slightest hint of honey. It was delicious!

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For dinner, I went with the Valencia Style Bison Burger, which was their bison burger, topped with smoked cheddar cheese and a spicy-sweet apple chutney. Different, right? Oh, and of course, I subbed in the sweet potato fries. Winking smile

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The fries were incredible, but unfortunately the burger was just mediocre. It was a little overcooked and sort of dry. Jay attributes it to being bison because apparently they’re a leaner cut of meat(?).

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Hey whatever, I still dug right in!

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Overall, Jay and I had a BLAST on our mini day-trip! What was supposed to just be a quick trip outlet shopping turned out to be a full-day adventure through Massachusetts.

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I’m such a lucky gal! Open-mouthed smile

Now, since I just finished up a 45 minute treadmill walk, it’s time to go grab a mug of coffee and make some breakfast.

See ya later gators!

Question for the Day:

What was the last spontaneous thing you did?

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{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lauren (Healthy Delicious) March 27, 2011 at 10:27 am

What a fun day – I love the Lee outlets! Manchester, VT has nice ones too (did some major damage there a few weeks ago).

Jay is right – bison is very lean! You have to keep it pretty rare in order to not dry it out.
Lauren (Healthy Delicious) recently posted..Thai Chicken Sandwiches with Ginger &amp Sambal Oelek

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2 Alicia March 27, 2011 at 10:32 am

Sounds like fun!! I go to the outlets in Lake George far tooo often. They have a banana republic outlet, gap, JCrew & lots of others!! :)
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3 Carrie (Moves 'N Munchies) March 27, 2011 at 10:32 am

ahh looks like so much fun!! and I LOVE your TJs goodies! oh gosh i havent done anything spontaneous in AGES.. its definitely something to work on!
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4 Melissa @ Chocolate & Kisses March 27, 2011 at 10:38 am

Aww, don’t you just love days that turn into that? Looks like you had a great time! You are a lucky gal! As for the bison burger, I use it in our house when I want the man to eat something a little healthier (but he doesn’t want to eat my turkey burgers!) You definitely have to cook it just right to have it be a little juicier. But it still has good taste. You should try it at home, with your cooking/baking skills….you are sure to make a winner!
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5 Courtney March 27, 2011 at 11:23 am

Good thinking, Melissa. I just may have to do that…thanks! :)

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6 Kate Gifford March 27, 2011 at 10:39 am

I went to college in Amherst, it was such a great place to live! That is where I met my husband. We haven’t been there in a few years, thanks for reminding me what a great day trip it is.
The Pub is another great place to have a burger, they are my favorite!

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7 fsugirl! March 27, 2011 at 10:40 am

Looks like such a fun day! You guys are a beautiful couple! :D

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8 Shayla March 27, 2011 at 10:41 am

I love that you stocked up with more chocolate peanut butter filled pretzels!!! They’re so freakin yummy and addicting – my hubby and I even munched on some last night!! ;)

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9 Courtney March 27, 2011 at 11:22 am

Hahaha, I was totally thinking of you when I bought these! It was actually Jay that put them in the cart, but I would have done it if he hadn’t. I have YOU to blame for this addiction now!!! ;)

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10 Andrea @ CanYouStayForDinner.com March 27, 2011 at 10:42 am

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH! Court, I went to college in Amherst and know the place like the back of my hand. My best memories are in that cute little town and I’m so so happy to see pictures! Oh! And ABC (Amherst Brewing Co.), gosh. I AM BEAMING right now. Miss it so so much.
Andrea @ CanYouStayForDinner.com recently posted..Lemon Garlic Tuna Burgers

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11 Courtney March 27, 2011 at 11:18 am

Awww that’s awesome!! It was definitely an adorable little town…we loved it there! Glad I could make you smile :-D

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12 Jess@atasteofconfidence March 27, 2011 at 10:54 am

Fun day! I ate about a million chocolate covered pb pretzels yesterday. they are amazing!
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13 Courtney March 27, 2011 at 11:21 am

YES, they are dangerous, aren’t they?!?! ;)

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14 Emily March 27, 2011 at 10:56 am

that sounds like the best day ever! Clothes shopping, trader joe’s, and delicious burger with sweet potato fries at a brew pub? umm DEFINITELY BEST DAY EVER haha

I haven’t done anything spontaneous in awhile, but reading this post definitely makes me want to go to the Lee Outlets :)
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15 Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun March 27, 2011 at 11:12 am

That looks like such a fabulous day!!!! Shopping, TJs, eating, and just hanging out. Perfect.

And those are clearly the most important things to stock up on at TJs. Duh! ;)
Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun recently posted..My Ode To Trader Joe’s

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16 Kimberley March 27, 2011 at 11:12 am

I wish I had a Trader Joes where I live :(

Those chocolate covered peanut butter pretzels look delicious ;)

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17 Tara @ The Game of Life March 27, 2011 at 11:14 am

Your Trader Joe’s trip looks alot like mine…

http://taralynnupshaw.blogspot.com/2011/03/my-birthday-festivities-have-already.html

I got the peanut butter choc. pretzels and joe joe’s! Beware the pretzels are very addicting!!!! :)

Oh, and my Granny sends me fruit of the month from Harry and David! I love it, I just got some really good nectarines!!

The last adventure I went on was camping with my boyfriend! It was so much fun!!
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18 Courtney March 27, 2011 at 11:24 am

I’ve always wanted to do a fruit of the month club! Lucky you!! :)

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19 Julie March 27, 2011 at 11:15 am

Seeing your adventures in MA is making me anxious for my trip back east in a couple months. I’m a preschool teacher and am counting down the 7 weeks to summer vacation! Amherst is definately a fun little town, I went to college there at UMass. Everything looked so yummy at H & D, I’ll have to make sure I stop there too!

I recently discovered your website and it’s always fun to read, thanks!

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20 Courtney March 27, 2011 at 11:21 am

Awww, thank YOU! :)

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21 kate@ahealthypassion March 27, 2011 at 11:23 am

Ahh LOVE Harry and David their moosemunch coffee is the best!
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22 michelle March 27, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Yum! I love moosemunch; I always get it super cheap at ….TJMaxx! lol

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23 Ally (oatsandspice) March 27, 2011 at 12:36 pm

It looks like you are having a great time on your trip :) And MMMMmmmm I’m obsessed with sweet potato fries – contemplating whether or not to make some for dinner tonight!
Ally (oatsandspice) recently posted..Tennis Days

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24 Courtney @ The Granola Chronicles March 27, 2011 at 12:42 pm

My husband loves Joe Joe’s – he eats them all.the.time!!
Courtney @ The Granola Chronicles recently posted..Lazy Morning

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25 Shari @ Chicago Cuisine Critique March 27, 2011 at 1:07 pm

Sounds like a fun day! That last photo of you two is adorable!
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26 Stephanie March 27, 2011 at 1:15 pm

yay for the BOILERMAKER!!! ive ran it for the past 4 years since its 10min from my house. Its such a fun race. So many spectators and runners its awesome!!

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27 Lauren @ Hungry Dancer March 27, 2011 at 2:24 pm

Looks like a blast!! Love the TJ’s powerberries!! So addicting!!
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28 Emily @ Relishments March 27, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Looks like you hit up all of my favorite places today! The Lee outlets are just about an hour south of me. Next time we’ll have to coordinate and go together :)
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29 Courtney March 27, 2011 at 8:25 pm

YES!! :)

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30 Mary @ Bites and Bliss March 27, 2011 at 5:44 pm

That Harry & David store looks so cute! Definitely somewhere I could spend some time just browsing through and wnating to try absolutley everything.

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31 Beth March 27, 2011 at 6:08 pm

I thought I recognized that TJ’s! It’s the one I go to! Next time you travel through the area, take a left out of TJ’s (opposite direction of Amherst) and head into Northampton…it’s like Amherst, but a bit bigger. They have an awesome brewery and restaurant…the Northampton brewery.

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32 Courtney March 27, 2011 at 8:25 pm

Thanks for the info, Beth! We’ll definitely keep that in mind. :)

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33 Colleen @ The Lunchbox Diaries March 27, 2011 at 6:21 pm

It looks like you guys had so much fun! I love little towns like that one – I hope to get out of the hustle and bustle of Northern VA sooner rather than later :)
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34 Little Miss Runshine March 27, 2011 at 6:55 pm

What a fun time!!!

I might be doing the boilermaker!!! :)

I’m really boring and can’t think of the last spontaneous thing, I think that means I should do something!

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35 Autumn @ Good Eats Girl March 27, 2011 at 6:57 pm

We had almost identical days yesterday! However, I got sucked into Banana Republic and my wallet has a lot less money in it! :)
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36 CaSaundra March 31, 2011 at 10:29 pm

I was actually born in MA and my grandma and brother live in Worcester. Such a great state! You definitely d to see more of it ASAP :-)

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37 Sarah Elizabeth April 1, 2011 at 6:09 pm

It’s so funny to hear you write about somewhere I’m so familiar with! ABC is great for cheap, laid-back, and delicious food and beer (love the Honey Pilsner). Moti across the street is also great, and you can’t beat the pizza from Antonio’s! You should visit Northampton next – another adorable college town!

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