Coffee Abroad; Thank you, Mama (mocha’s)!

Drink; Tirraman mocha (heavy caramel and mocha)
Stop; Auburn, Alabama
 
  Hey guys! I’m so sorry that my post for today is late! If you’ve been following on Instagram and Twitter, I’ve been rather sick. I tested the Tarteist Pro Remix palette for my next video (with my updated setup!), but I’ve lost my voice. So… there’s that. 

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       Anyway… let’s get to today’s delayed post! While on my weekend adventure to Auburn, I visited Mama Mochas again. This time I was pleased to see that they had completely rearranged their shop, which changed the aesthetic just a little bit. The lighting was different, I believe, as well! Then again, it could have been an illusion by the seemingly different decor. They changed up their seating arrangement, but despite the changes, it was this still the same old mama mochas. This time I also noticed, that they had a thrift rack. Where you could buy clothing that I assume was donated by the Bristow’s of the establishment. But before I perused the rack, I decided to get my long awaited coffee! Today, I got something new.
 
Mama Mochas tirraman mocha
 
         It honestly took all of my self-control not to get my usual White Russian, since I do gravitate towards the same flavors. I gathered my strength and this time I got the tirraman mocha. It’s their mocha with heavy caramel, and I gotta tell you, it is not the same as my white Russian. So tasting it shocked my taste buds because what I wanted was the white Russian, and it’s what I was expecting. That aside, this is not a bad drink. At first it’s got a very earthy tone underneath the richness of the caramel. There’s a fair bit of bite from the espresso. But once you get used to it you’re able to recognize the sweetness just underneath.This is another one from my trip, that you want to drink and great moderation. Small sips are your friend. Which sucks for me, because I like to drink my coffee fast. I’ll learn one of these days!
 
       Before I left, I perused the aforementioned thrift rack. I found this some super adorable pieces that almost came home with me! I had nearly settled on a super cute Jersey dress, or some really cute shirts that would be perfect for work. But, know I did not get anything I could wear to work. Except, on a casual Friday, maybe. I got an adorable black sweater comet looks like something I would see at the posh peach. With the word Love on the front.  It was only $5, no regrets. 
 
     My final consensus on Mama Mochas for this visit is….
 

Taste; /5

    This one honestly wasn’t for me, I prefer much sweeter flavors than this one delivered. It wasn’t bad by any stretch, so if you enjoy the bite of Espresso, you may really like this!

Instagrameter; /5

A new look means a new score! I wanna say I gave Mama Mochas a similar one last time! I really liked the openness of their new arrangement and found it very welcoming and cozy feeling. You know, despite being a fairly large and open floor. 

       As some real quick final thoughts of post, I want to thank you guys for joining me to check out another selection from Auburn! I sincerely do think that 2019 is going to be a year of content, and travel! Also, I haven’t done a giveaway in a while, so if you guys want in on any future ones that I’m planning, go ahead and sign up for my weekly newsletter! 

    Don’t forget to follow on twitter and instagram! The links are in the sidebar!

 

Boutique Debut; Oh, So Charming (Oaks)

Boutique Debut; Oh, So Charming (Oaks)

        Hey guys! It’s definitely been a long week, especially with all the running from the weekend robbing my poor little feet of sweet relaxation. Though they may ache and complain, I have no regrets! Especially with this first fashion related post from last weekend. This post is dedicated to my favorite outfit that I had to pass on, sadly, due to cost, and the breadth of the shopping I did this weekend. RIP at Charming Oaks toasty knit tank and navy skirt. I’ll never forget you.

     Before we dive into the outfits that I was able to find, let’s take a look at the aesthetic and an honorable mention. Their aesthetic feels like hospitality. It’s got a very welcoming feel in all of the warm colors and even the layout is open and inviting. When you walk in, you see this huge layout of racks and clothes of all kinds of colors. They have this adorable aesthetic lighting in the back that has the shop name, Charming Oaks, which was the only picture I thought I was going to get with all the rain outside.

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      In true JaJ fashion,  I did that thing where I went to a shop and picked at least one outfit to take home with me. I say at least one, because I did choose two items from one particular shop, which I’ll be showing you in an upcoming post! I’m seriously so upset that I could only pick one outfit from Charming Oaks, but I’ll definitely be back once I gather my resources back up! I’m coming for you, Charming Oaks. Be ready. I know I am. 🙂

     I’ll start at item number one that I tried on, just because it’s visible in my other pictures. I found this adorable red polka-dot summery dress on the clearance rack. In fact, all of my finds are from the clearance racks. I’m boujee on a budget, what can I say? This dress was way too cute for 5 dollars, and just my size. The fabric was breathable and light, perfect for the summer. I can’t wait for the warmer weather so I can pair this with some simple wedges and an anklet. Maybe a straw hat?

Charming Oaks Red Summer Dress
Pardon my mismatches socks- I think my house doesn’t want my socks to match because they KEEP disappearing.

      My second outfit was my favorite. I loved the little cardigan-thing, and the toasty knit tank that confuses me on what season it would be for. It would be far too hot for the summer, but would be great for the cooler weather if you wanted to just have it peek out of a plunging neck. I paired these items with a high-waisted navy skirt and felt so chic. I feel like would be great with some navy pumps, or shoot, even my tried-and-true hightops that I absolutely swear by. This would have been a great outfit for our trip coming up, too. Cold weather be damned. I do think I’ll return to Charming Oaks for this outfit, or one like it.

Charming oak knit tank and navy skirt

       I had few items that didn’t work out due to sizing issues, and these shorts were very nearly among their number. With an adorable bird patterned romper, and a sweater dress that I almost cried when I found it didn’t fit. This next outfit might be tied with the above, actually. As I look at it, I like it more and more. The loose-fitting olive green, drapey tank and black shorts combo is another one that begs for converse. Or, gold flats, would be a marvelous choice too! At first, I flat-out didn’t like this one. I generally stay away from really loose things, because they tend to make me look boxy. Boxy isn’t sexy, guys. I don’t like boxy. Like, give me a nice silhouette, c’mon.

Charming Oaks black shorts and olive tank

       You can literally see my doubt. I have a whole, “Do I like this?” thing going on. If I had been able to find a pair of black shorts that were just a little more my size,I would have absolutely bought this outfit. 

      My general concensus of Charming Oaks is that I’m thrilled with my experience there. My debit card had issues, but that was no fault at all of the lovely and understanding ladies that manned the counter. I was absolutely obsessed with that Valentines day shrug in the slideshow way up above. I certainly have plans to return for some serious retail therapy! 

     

Coffee Abroad; Auburn, Alabama’s own RossHouse!

            On my Weekend of Content, I took myself on a date to Auburn. I hadn’t been in so long, I hadn’t realized how much there was to do just in a single block! I visited 2 coffee shops and 4 boutiques to gather content for you! Let’s get to the first leg of my trip. Ross House. The weather being as inclement as it was, made my trip have a foreboding air. The rain intermittently drizzled and poured from the sky in torrents. When I walked up to Ross House, it was lightly drizzling but I got soaked to the bone as I left.

       The Ross House doesn’t let you forget that it is, in fact, a house. The aesthetic is altogether cozy and inviting. When you walk in, you’re greeting by a fireplace and chandeliers through the open doorway. There’s a separate room to the left of the entrance with more tables. I didn’t take photos of some of the other rooms for the privacy of the patrons that were set up there. I was honestly a little confused when I walked in, because generally when you walk into a coffee shop, the counter is right in front of you when you enter. 

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       I ordered a Vanilla Gingerbread Iced Latte, thinking I liked Gingerbread because I do like the cookies. That didn’t turn out to be the case, sadly. So, they did offer to make me something more up my alley. I went with a safe bet of Vanilla Caramel, I did find that it was much more bitter and earthy than I had expected.  This is one for people who enjoy the bite of espresso. Luckily for my sweet tooth, after a few sips the earthiness died down. Once I was able to taste the sweetness under the bite, it was smooth and rich. I think next time, I’ll get my drink extra sweet.

      Before we close out this post, I do want to note that the parking is woefully horrible. I had to do a very uncomfortable K-turn to get out. There’s a parking garage next door but it’s not available for anyone other than apartment guests. It was gated off, which I only found out by going into the wrong parking lot. 

 

       My rating for Ross House is below!

Taste; /5

Instagrameter; /5

First to Paris now to Little Italy… Pizza

City: Auburn
Stop: Little Italy Pizza
Cost: Moderate
Food Type: Pizza, Calzones, Stromboli

While on my adventure to Auburn, we stopped by Little Italy Pizza. It’s an affordable little pizza place nestled on a small, but bustling street. The inside was larger than expected from the outside and the moment we stepped inside I was ravenous. It smells fantastic and the various pizzas they were working on behind the counter did nothing to help my appetite.

20180428_1549515916445871474362010.jpgThey had high ceilings and relaxed lighting. The cashier was exceptionally personable and patient with me trying to make up my mind on what to try. I’m afraid my choice wasn’t too exciting because I’m rather boring in my pizza preference. I chose a bacon and pepperoni calzone.

The calzone itself wasn’t very… presentable, and nor was it what I expected. But that aside it tasted great. It was stuffed with ricotta, mozzarella and my choices of meat. I wasted no time digging in.20180428_155705893866602660799669.jpg

While the presentation is obviously lacking, it makes up for that in taste. It was fresh out of the oven and the crispness proved it, it had a very pleasant crunch. To my surprise, given what it was, it wasn’t overly greasy and they used plenty of cheese. The provided marinara sauce, which I didn’t even need. They didn’t drown me in pepperoni, I guess they know the most important part of the calzone is the cheese, so for that, I’m grateful. (get it?)

All in all, Little Italy Pizza in Auburn was a good experience. The food was tasty and affordable, and the workers were all incredibly friendly. I certainly recommend this place if you’re from out of the area and trying to eat on a budget!

Environment;  3 out of 5/5

Presentation; 1.5 out of 5/5

Taste; 3.5 out of 5/5

While the pizza was good, it wasn’t remarkable and was slightly above average. Not too greasy which is a plus!

Coffee Abroad; Just how Mama used to make it!

City: Auburn, Alabama
Shop: Mama Mocha’s
Drink: White Russian

I’ve been wanting to come back here since we found it a few weeks ago, before our trip to Homewood. It has a really mellow lighting that is calming and tranquil when paired with the comfortable seating options it really makes you feel right home. Mama Mocha’s has a wide open floor plan with a somewhat disheveled charm that feels altogether welcoming. And though they have a menu with so many things, it’s not intimidating in the least because the baristas are so knowledgeable and patient. 

This evening when we went, it was busy. Like really busy. It’s near Finals time and there were college students lounged out everywhere (some with blankets!). In order to respect them, I didn’t take pictures of my own but took some from google reviews that have been posted.

Mama Mocha's has quite the extensive menu

The view when you walk up to the counter! Look at all of those choices!
My favorite corner of the seating area- that couch is insanely plush!

When I went to place my order, I was tossed up between the White Russian (toffee and white mocha) or the Drunken Waffle (Maple and Heavy Caramel), I asked the barista what she liked better and ended up opting with her advice; the White Russian. It came out the moment I was done paying, and the service was phenomenal.

The drink itself smells a little like candy, which is to say it’s very sweet smelling. Luckily though, it’s not quite as sweet as it smells with a pleasant bite from the espresso acting as a precursor to the somewhat forceful toffee flavor. It reaches a lovely contrast as the flavor disburses. The espresso is certainly potent because I’m not going to lie, I feel raring to go!

If you don’t like toffee, this drink is definitely not for you because the toffee is definitely noticeable. If you enjoy toffee or toffee flavors, then I urge you to give this drink a try. Full disclosure, this isn’t the first time I’ve tried this, and it certainly won’t be the last.

Mama Mocha's date night

Yum!

Instagrameter; 3.5 out of 5/5

for the artsy layout and the cloth covering that could be seen as an interesting backdrop to photos, I give Mama Mocha’s a 3.5 out of 5.

Taste; 4.5 out of 5/5

Auburn’s City Fest; Modern Woodstock?

Auburn’s City Fest; Modern Woodstock?

City: Auburn, Al
Event: City Fest
Hours: 9am-4pm
Dogs Allowed? Yes!!!! So many dogs there.

Welcome to another review of a city event! This one is on Auburn’s City Fest, and right away I got some serious Woodstock Vibes from the people huddled under the shade of the many trees while on their picnic blankets. My other half would have loved it, had he accompanied me but having run all weekend last week, he opted to stay home.

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I met up with Miss Jeans and her husband and we wandered around the many, many booths for a while. Plenty of art and unique treats to be seen. Including coffee candy that was Phenomenal and ties into my theme. I tried the french vanilla and bought a Pop. The inside of the candy has the bean in it. I’m really excited to eat it later. It was a hard choice on what flavor to try, because they had so many different ones. The same booth also had Coffee Butter Lip Balm and… GUYS. It smells so good and it feels so rich. If I pucker up, I smell coffee. It’s amazing.

Aside from the coffee stuff, they had some crinkle fries that were pretty over-priced that we wanted, but couldn’t justify spending 11 bucks on it. What I could justify was some red-velvet keylime cake. I tasted the velvet portion and it was divine. Unfortunately I did drop it, and while one of the MANY dogs didn’t get to it, it did get a little beat up. It still tastes FANTASTIC.

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I really wanted to try some of the food, but unfortunately, I’m on a budget so I had to make do with cake and lip balm. I did really want some italian ice or some pork skins, which had some flavors that you don’t see in stores like sour cream and onion.

The high-light of my day at the event was the dogs. You couldn’t take two steps without running into a dog. Pit Bulls, Huskies, Labs, and Corgies were everywhere. My favorite dog was one wearing sunglasses that I was invited to take a photo of. He posed for me and just looks so relaxed that I wanted to take him home with me.

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There were so many stalls of different crafts and foods, and the entire park smelled absolutely delicious that I was starving within about 45 minutes. We decided to hit the road before it got close to closing so that we wouldn’t have to fight to escape. I took one lingering look back into the park before we left to carry on with our day.

From this point on, since this event had just so many dogs, I’ll be using puppies for my rating system.

Puppies;4 out of 5/5