6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver

Happy Monday everybody! After both of our flights were delayed this weekend, we’re finally back from our anniversary trip to Denver! In true after weekend trip hangover fashion, I’m linking up with Biana to tell y’all six things that I leaned while visiting Denver!

The Wandering Weekenders- 6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver

  1. The altitude really can effect you if you’re not used to it- You’d think that this one is kind of a duh because everybody always talks about how the altitude effects people, and it really does! Chris and I aren’t in hardcore shape, but just walking up the incline to get into Red Rocks Amphitheater totally kicked our butts! I also found myself feeling a little bit more dehydrated during this trip, but that might be because of the lack of humidity along with the altitude. So definitely be prepared for not being able to be as athletic as you’re used to in Denver.
    The Wandering Weekenders- 6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver
  2. If there are still tickets left for a concert at Red Rocks buy them immediately because the concert will get sold out- I have to admit that this  trip was not very planned for us at all, which actually turned out to be a blessing since it was an anniversary trip, but that also meant that we didn’t buy any tickets in advance. One of the things that I had heard that we needed to do while we were in Denver was go to a concert at Red Rocks Amphitheater. So when I looked online and saw that there was a concert on Saturday night and there were still tickets on Tuesday, I thought that’d be a great thing thing to try and do Saturday night. So after we were done with all of our other activities on Saturday, we drove out to Red Rocks, parked, and walked up to the entrance in the rain, only to find out that the show was sold out. Whomp whomp! So definitely learn from our mistake and buy your tickets to your concert at Red Rocks because chances are it’ll get sold out!
    The Wandering Weekenders- 6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver
  3. Denver people really like their beer- One of the things that we saw a lot of while we were in Denver was bars but breweries as well. In Houston we have quite a few craft breweries, but I don’t think the numbers compare to what Denver has! We were able to visit one brewery while we were there, but I know that my brother in law and other beer enthusiasts would have a blast visiting the Mile High City, even if it’s just to drink beer!
    The Wandering Weekenders- 6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver
  4. Wine out of a can is actually pretty good- Even though we really didn’t plan our trip out very much, I still did some research on things to do in Denver, and one of the things that I knew that I wanted to do was a tour of the Infinite Monkey Theorem winery. The Infinite Monkey Theorem is an urban winery that produces wine from Colorado grapes in the middle of downtown Denver, and they were one of the first wineries to put wine in cans. Our tour guide was so knowledgeable about wine, but the thing that I really loved was being able to try wine out of a can for the first time! Not only was it delicious, but it was so cool too! You’d better believe that I’m going to try and find some of this at home!
    The Wandering Weekenders- 6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver
  5. It can get hot in the Mile High City- When we originally booked our trip to Colorado I was really excited about maybe getting away from the Texas heat for a weekend, so you can imagine our surprise when we looked at the temperatures before we left and discovered that the highs were going to be in the 90’s while we were there! That’s still cooler than what it was in Houston, plus there wasn’t a ton of humidity, but I was still very happy that we hiked in the morning on Sunday!
    The Wandering Weekenders- 6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver
  6. Besides concerts, apparently Red Rocks Amphitheater is also used as a work out facility- When we missed the concert on Saturday night, we were still determined to go hiking at Red Rocks Sunday morning. We arrived early in the morning and saw that the amphitheater was actually open, so we decided to see what we had missed. Holy Batman, Denver! We were not prepared to see at least 100 people working out in the middle of Red Rock Amphitheater! All of those people were seriously so dedicated and pretty hard core running up and down all of those steps!
    The Wandering Weekenders- 6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver
And there you have it! We still managed to do a lot during our trip to Denver, but we also enjoyed having a much more relaxed and easy going trip for our anniversary! I can’t wait to tell y’all all about the rest of our trip!

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The Wandering Weekenders- 6 Things I Learned While Visiting Denver

Five Things I Learned From Six Years of Marriage

Happy Friday everybody! All weekends are definitely special, but this one is even more so for Chris and I because on Sunday we’re celebrating our six year anniversary. Last year for our anniversary I wrote our story down and talked about how we met, how Chris proposed, and our wedding).

The Wandering Weekenders- Five Things I Learned From Six Years Of Marriage

We’re not going to be celebrating as big as last year when we were in Hawaii because six isn’t as big of a milestone as five, but we are headed to Denver for a quick weekend getaway to celebrate so make sure to follow along on Snapchat @ashleylillis and Instagram @thewanderingweekenders! In honor of our anniversary I thought that I would share some things that I’ve learned from our six years of marriage, and all of the pictures that we’ve taken on our anniversary every year!

The Wandering Weekenders- Five Things I Learned From Six Years Of Marriage

  1. Compromise is key- I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a very headstrong and stubborn person and generally like to get things my way, but obviously if a relationship is a two way street then you have to let the other person in the relationship get their way every now and then. For the big decisions in our life Chris and I always try to compromise if we have different opinions on what we should do. Sometimes Chris gets what he wants, sometimes I get what I want, and sometimes we meet in the middle.
    The Wandering Weekenders- Five Things I Learned From Six Years Of Marriage
  2. Take time for yourself- This seems really counterintuitive to a marriage, especially considering that I just talked about how you have to work as a team, but I really do feel that a relationship will really work if each person keeps their identity. Chris and I have a lot in common but we also have our own interests. There’s no way that I would expect Chris to love reading as much as I do, and he also doesn’t expect me to love shooting as much as him. So we both have our things that we do separate, but we also have our things that we do together and we’re happier because of it!

    The Wandering Weekenders- Five Things I Learned From Six Years Of Marriage
    This is the only picture not taken on our anniversary, but it was taken 10 days before our second year anniversary at our friend’s wedding so I’m counting it!
  3. Break your routine and be spontaneous- I think that as adults in the normal working world, it can be very easy to fall into the normal routine during the week. You wake up, go to work, come home, eat dinner, go to bed, and then wake up and do it all over again. It’s very easy to fall into that trap of the doing same old same old, so Chris and I like to have random week night dates every now and then. They’re just a great way to reconnect and make sure that you don’t fall into the same old boring routine all the time.
    The Wandering Weekenders- Five Things I Learned From Six Years Of Marriage
  4. Find joy in the little things- Like I said earlier, sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in the normalcy of every day life, which can sometimes cause you to feel less excited about some of the things that you do or see on a regular basis. For example, cooking dinner can be a hassle and a pain in the butt after a long day at work, but it can turn into a great way to spend some time with your significant other and learn all about their day if you cook together. It’s the little day to day things that help to hold a marriage together!
    The Wandering Weekenders- Five Things I Learned From Six Years Of Marriage
  5. Don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself- As much as I like to think that I’m a perfect person, I definitely do some idiotic things every once in a while, especially in front of Chris. The best thing to do when that happens is to just laugh at yourself because if you can’t laugh at yourself in front of your significant other, when can you laugh at yourself?
    The Wandering Weekenders- Five Things I Learned From Six Years Of Marriage

And that’s all I’ve learned from six years of marriage. Just kidding! It’s amazing how much you learn about yourself, but also your significant other when you’re married to them. I know that we’re still very early on in our marriage and as the years go on we’ll continue to learn more about ourselves and each other, and I think that might be what I’m looking forward to the most! I’m linking up with The Farmer’s Wife for the Oh Hey, Friday linkup!

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The Wandering Weekenders- Five Things I Learned From Six Years Of Marriage

Would You Rather- Travel Edition

Happy Wednesday everybody! I have to admit that I’m kind of having a little bit of summer-itis going on right now (is there such a thing as summer-itis), and I just can’t get my thoughts straight for the rest of my Portland posts right now. So since it’s been six months since I’ve done one of these posts, I thought that I’d answer some more fun Would You Rather- Travel Edition questions from Shane over at Sea Salt Secrets for this Wanderful Wednesday with Lauren of Lauren on Location, Van of Snow in Tromso, Isabel of The Sunny Side of This and Marcella of What a Wonderful World.

The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Visit Hogwarts or Narnia?
Without a doubt, hands down, I would totally rather visit Hogwarts, and I’ve even been there a couple of times already, or at least the one at Universal Studios. Even though I really loved The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, I never finished off the rest of the series, which is a huge book nerd sin I know. Harry Potter on the other hand, I’ve read them all multiple times, well except for the 7th book, and I’m sure that I’ll read them again later. There’s just something so magical about those books, and I would totally die if I got to visit the real life Hogwarts in the real wizarding world!
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Get dumped and eat the cost of your ex’s trip OR spend an entire 2-week vacation with someone you can’t stand?
I would much rather eat the cost of my ex’s trip. I’m not afraid to admit that I’m the type of person that will let some of the little things get to me, and if I’m with a person that I can’t stand, I would definitely have a miserable time. At least if I got dumped, I could maybe go on an amazing trip and try to make the most of it!
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Live in Africa or in Antarctica for a year?
Both would definitely be pretty interesting, but I think that I’d choose Africa. I’m not the type of person that could handle the cold for extended periods of time, and since I already live in Texas, I’m sure that I’d be ok with the heat for the little bit.
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Be captured by a wild tribe in the jungles or by pirates at sea?
This is a tough one, but I think that I’d probably choose captured by a wild tribe in the jungle. At least if you’re in the jungle you have the chance of running away, but if you’re with pirates at sea, you’d have to jump into potentially shark infested waters to get away. No thank you!
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Live in extreme luxury but with no freedom to do what you want or on the lowest budget travel imaginable, with the freedom to travel anywhere you like?
If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, then you know that I’m very much a Type A personality and love to have everything planned out perfectly for my trips because I want to do what I want to do. That being said, I definitely can’t imagine traveling in super cheap and budget conditions because I’d probably be freaked out about sleeping in gross conditions. So maybe I’d choose the extreme luxury and be happy that I’d be able to travel at all in great conditions.
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Attend the royal wedding or the Olympic games?
With the summer Olympics just around the corner, this one is easy for me, I would totally choose the Olympics games! I don’t think that there’d be anything more exciting than watching the best athletes in the world competing for their country and being able to chant U-S-A when we win gold! I’m getting so excited already just thinking about all the  swimming, beach volleyball, and gymnastics I’ll be watching this summer on my TV! What sports are you looking forward to watching this summer?
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Dine at the hottest new restaurant before it gets big or a hole in the wall ethnic restaurant with amazing food or a familiar classic with grandma’s comfort food?
Another thing that you’ve probably noticed if you’ve been reading this blog for a while is how much I love food. One of my favorite ways to explore new cities is by eating, whether it’s a local favorite or a restaurant owned by a famous chef. Between the two of these options though, I think that I’d probably choose the whole in the wall restaurant. It would probably be the most unique experience, and chances are you could probably dine at that hot new restaurant once the press around it settles down.
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Live one life that lasts 1,000 years or live 10 lives that last 100 years each?
Do we get the same loved ones in these scenarios? If my whole family could live with me for 1,000 years and aging happens equally across the 1,000 years like the 100 years I would totally choose that option. Because it would really suck to be really old for 900 years because you probably wouldn’t be able to do much. If you aged equally across the 1,000 years, it would be really cool to see how the world changes over a millennium. The 10 lives would be interesting, but if you knew that you were living different lives, I feel like you’d probably end up missing your loved ones too much to enjoy your new life.
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Wake up with a regrettable tattoo on your butt or with a random stranger in your bed?
Considering that I’m married, I would definitely choose the regrettable tattoo on my butt. If it was a pretty crazy night, I’m pretty sure that my husband would be the one that would be egging me on to get said tattoo, and he’d be the only one seeing it anyways.

Travel wide or travel deep?
This is such a great question, and I think that it’s one that travel bloggers tend to argue about amongst each other a lot. Do you try and see as much as possible as quickly as possible, or do you try try and see as much as possible over a long period of time, so basically tourist versus traveller. Based on my current travel style and what I can really do today with my job and lifestyle, I think that I’d probably choose to travel wide. There’s so many places that I haven’t seen that I think even getting a glimpse of some of the amazing places around the world would be amazing for me!
The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

So there you have it! Do you agree with my answers or would you choose something different? Thanks again Shane for coming up with some awesome questions to answer!

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The Wandering Weekenders- Would You Rather Travel Edition

Another Weekend of Celebrating

Another Monday means another weekend recap with the amazing Biana! Things were definitely a lot quieter than what they were last weekend which meant there was a lot of binge watching going on at home. But Friday was my sister’s birthday, which meant that there was a lot of celebrating as well! So here we go with another weekend recap, a weekend of celebrating!

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

Friday

My sister officially entered the last of her mid-twenties on Friday, and I spent practically the whole day Friday celebrating with her. At lunch on Friday we headed to Saint Arnold for lunch so that Courtney could get the birthday pint glass that you can only get on your actual birthday. We had the best time just talking and enjoying some amazing food and a beer, or two for the birthday girl. Afterwards I headed back to work for the day.

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

After work, Chris met me downtown, and we headed to happy hour with some coworkers at a fun place called Public Services downtown, that’s a whiskey and wine bar. This sign out front was so adorable, but the inside was even better! It felt like an old speak easy from the 20’s with big couches and comfy chairs that made me want to just relax and hang out with friends. We’ll definitely be heading back there soon!

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

To end the night, we ate dinner with my sister and her husband at one of the nicest steak houses in Houston, Vic and Anthony’s. Literally every single bite that we had was delicious, and I don’t know what was better the crab cakes we had for an appetizer, the blue cheese butter that was over my steak, the au gratin potatoes and mushrooms we had for sides, or the creme brûlée we had for dessert! I’m getting hungry again just thinking about it!

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

Overall, it was such a fun day, and I’m so glad that I got to spend all day celebrating my wonderful sister!

Saturday

After quite a bit of wine Friday night, Chris and I were excited to sleep in a little bit Saturday morning. After I woke up, I decided to start binge watching a new TV series that I’d heard so much about.

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, then you know that I’m kind of obsessed with reality TV, and recently I’ve become obsessed with the Bachelor and Bachelorette. When somebody from work had mentioned UnREAL, which is a scripted show that takes you behind the scenes of a reality TV show, I knew that it was a show that I wanted to watch. Season 1 is on Hulu, and you’d better believe that I watched all 10 episodes this weekend, and even got my sister to watch the first episode with me on Sunday. For any of y’all that like The Bachelor and Bachelorette, y’all definitely need to check out UnREAL!

We did take a break about midway through the day from UnREAL and headed to the movie theater to see The Secret Life of Pets. As soon as I saw the preview a year ago, I’d been dying to see this movie, and oh my goodness was it worth it! If you’re an animal lover then you’re going to fall in love with this movie and want to watch it over and over again! I just hope that Dart has that much fun when he’s at home while we’re at work!

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

After the movie, we decided to head to the grocery store and get our meal prepping and grocery shopping done a day early. It was very nice because the grocery store was so empty, and we even snagged the brand new Blue Bell flavor at the grocery store. If you’re from Texas, you already know about this new flavor, but basically it combines Cookies & Cream with Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough! It’s absolute heaven! The rest of the night we just relaxed with more UnREAL and maybe a little champs as well!

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

Sunday

We had another morning of sleeping in on Sunday, and then finished off UnREAL before my sister came over for lunch. We were going to head to Torchy’s for lunch, but the line was literally out the door so we headed to Bernie’s for round two!

I ended up getting a different burger than last time and my sister and I tried some new fries as well! I think that my final verdict would have to be that I liked the Fire Drill burger that I had on Sunday better than The Cheerleader from last week, but the Blue Cheese fries were better than the Green Chili Bacon fries from this week. No matter what, though Bernie’s is worth every calorie, and I’l definitely be going back for round three soon!

The Wandering Weekenders- Another Weekend Of Celebrating

Even though I’d done my grocery shopping on Saturday, I went to the grocery store with my sister again before we headed back to the house so I could show her how awesome UnREAL was! After an episode she had to head home, and I spent the rest of the day just relaxing with Chris and Dart and getting caught up on blog stuff.

Overall, it was a fantastic weekend spent with family and just enjoying each other, and probably a little more quiet than last weekend! And now it’s time to take on Monday and tackle another week!

Portland Food Cart Tour with Eat Adventures

Over Memorial Day weekend, Chris and I made our first trip to the PNW with some friends of ours. One of the things that Portland is probably most known for is the fact that it’s a foodie city with a ton of food carts, and food was definitely what we had on our mind when we were planning activities.

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

We arrived in town super late Thursday night, so we thought that the very best thing to kick off our adventures around Portland was with a food tour. When I was doing some research online I stumbled upon Eat Adventures Food Tours which offers a food cart tour around Portland, which I knew would be perfect for us! So Friday morning we slept in a little bit, met up with our tour guide Angie, piled into her 18 passenger van, and started our food cart tour adventure!

Koi Fusion

Our first stop of the day was at a food cart pod located in the Northern Portland neighborhood off of Mississippi Avenue. This food cart pod was a medium size pod with about 8 carts and a few tables set up under an overhang. There was also a brewery right next to the carts which would make for a perfect lunch or dinner in my opinion.

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

Our first food tasting of the day was a fish taco and kimchi from a food cart called Koi Fusion. From the first bite, that taco was so incredibly delicious, and I’m pretty sure that I scarfed it down in a completely unattractive way! This was also my first time trying kimchi, and I don’t know how I hadn’t had it in my life before! I think that what I loved the most was that all of the ingredients tasted so fresh and the kimchi and lime that was on the taco just really sent it over the edge for me.

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

While we were eating, Angie explained to us the history of the cart. It’s so interesting because each food cart has it’s own story, and Koi Fusion is actually a food cart that has multiple operations around the Portland area, and even a brick mortar store now. I also loved the fact that it was a family operation too!

Lula’s

Once we had scarfed down our taco, it was time to head to our next stop on our food cart journey! We traveled to the northern Portland neighborhood of Alberta that is known for their love of local, which is why it wasn’t very surprising that the next food cart pod that we visited was a small pod of only 3 or 4 carts.

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

Lula’s food cart is a breakfast food cart, which I thought was very unique, that is known for their locally sourced ingredients, which means that once they’re out they’re out. Lula’s had prepared for us an amazing quiche that all the ingredients tasted amazing, especially the crust! It was awesome! While we were eating, Angie again gave us the history of the food cart, and talked about how Lula’s is very farm to table, and how all of their ingredients are picked specifically by them, which I think is so awesome!

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

Viking Soul Food

We were kind of done with the northern part of Portland at this point in time, so next we traveled southeast to the neighborhood of Belmont. Our third food cart pod was the biggest one that we had visited by far, and there must have been a dozen carts in that area with a huge covered seating area. It was so big that it had it’s own name- The Bite On Belmont. What made this pod unique was the fact that it was in a designated area and it was the first pod that had a designated beer cart that we saw.

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

Alas, beer was not what we were trying, but we did have an amazing lefse wrap from the Viking Soul Food cart. A lefse wrap is a Scandinavian crepe made from a potato that can be filled with anything and everything you can imagine. Ours was a savory and sweet lefse that was filled with goat cheese, nuts, and a preserve as well. It was so rich, but so good!

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

Hapa Ramen

If I thought that the Bite On Belmont was huge, I was so incredibly surprised by how big the next food cart pod was that we visited in the southeast neighborhood of Division. This food cart pod was pretty much the size of a whole block and it not only had beer carts and food carts, but it also had a couple of shopping carts as well. This pod had a huge area for people to sit at, and there were even some fire pits as well! It was so cool to just walk around and experience this huge pod.

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The vibe of this pod was so unique and fun, which is why it was so awesome that we tried ramen from Hapa Ramen at this stop. I’m a huge fan of ramen and we typically try to go out for it on Fridays, even in the middle of the Texas summer, so that should tell you how addicted I am to it.

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

I can’t even imagine how difficult it is to make ramen, which makes me have so much respect for these guys that make ramen in a tiny food cart! Overall I thought that the ramen was very good, the broth wasn’t as creamy as the place that we go to for work, but I’d definitely eat it again!

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

PBJs Grilled

Our last stop of the day was in the famous southeast neighborhood of Hawthorne at another permanent food cart pod. This one had about 8 carts with a great seating area and another fire pit.

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

As soon as Angie mentioned that we would be having some unique PB&Js from PBJs Grilled, I was so freaking excited. I’m a huge fan of PB&Js and I also love trying different flavor profiles, and that’s exactly what we got!

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

We tried the Spicy Basil and the Pumpkin Pie PBJs and oh my goodness were they good! The Spicy Basil combined peanut butter, Sriracha, curry, basil, and orange marmalade, while the Pumpkin Pie combined peanut butter, pumpkin butter, caramel sauce, and pie crust! Both of these sound really weird right, but oh my goodness were they fantastic! I would have thought that the Spicy Basil would have been my favorite because I love spice, but I fell in love the Pumpkin Pie PBJ because of that pie crust! Yum!

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

Final Thoughts

If you’re going to be visiting Portland and want to experience the food cart scene, like most everybody does, then this tour is a must for you! Angie was so incredibly knowledgable, and we learned so much about the different neighborhoods that we visited and the food cart scene in general.

We also ate so much incredible food on our cart tour. If you think that you’re going to be getting a bite at each stop you’re very wrong. Everybody got their own individual serving, so you’d better come very, very hungry!

The cost of the tour was $82/person, and when you consider how much food you get and all of the transportation is included, I don’t think that you’d find a better deal. So if you’re planning a trip to Portland, make sure to add Eat Adventures to your itinerary. I guarantee you’ll learn a lot, eat a lot, and have a great time!

I’m linking up with Lauren of Lauren on Location, Van of Snow in Tromso, Isabel of The Sunny Side of This and Marcella of What a Wonderful World for another Wanderful Wednesday!

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The Wandering Weekenders- Portland Food Cart Tour With Eat Adventures

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